Minimizing the elastic free energy of a thin sheet of nematic polymer network among smooth isometric immersions is the strategy purported by the mainstream theory. In this paper, we broaden the class of admissible spontaneous deformations: we consider ridged isometric immersions, which can cause a sharp ridge in the immersed surfaces. We propose a model to compute the extra energy distributed along such ridges. This energy comes from bending; it is shown under what circumstances it scales quadratically with the sheet’s thickness, falling just in between stretching and bending energies. We put our theory to the test by studying the spontaneous deformation of a disk on which a radial hedgehog was imprinted at the time of crosslinking. We predict the number of folds that develop in terms of the degree of order induced in the material by external agents (such as heat and illumination).

Ridge energy for thin nematic polymer networks

Pedrini, Andrea;Virga, Epifanio G.
2021

Abstract

Minimizing the elastic free energy of a thin sheet of nematic polymer network among smooth isometric immersions is the strategy purported by the mainstream theory. In this paper, we broaden the class of admissible spontaneous deformations: we consider ridged isometric immersions, which can cause a sharp ridge in the immersed surfaces. We propose a model to compute the extra energy distributed along such ridges. This energy comes from bending; it is shown under what circumstances it scales quadratically with the sheet’s thickness, falling just in between stretching and bending energies. We put our theory to the test by studying the spontaneous deformation of a disk on which a radial hedgehog was imprinted at the time of crosslinking. We predict the number of folds that develop in terms of the degree of order induced in the material by external agents (such as heat and illumination).
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11571/1392876
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