Europhysics Letters

Three-dimensional dye distribution in photo-oriented liquid-crystal alignment layers


The three-dimensional optical anisotropy of photo-buffed dye-doped polymer films and the resulting orientation imparted to a liquid crystal in contact are probed using total internal reflection. Although the linearly polarized writing light generates a uniaxial distribution of dye molecules, the polymer films are biaxial, a result of symmetry breaking by the film surface.