Abstract

The angular distribution of forward-scattered light in transient-scattering-mode (TSM) and extended-scattering-mode (ESM) ferroelectric liquid-crystal (FLC) devices was evaluated by use of circularly polarized incident light. For both modes the intensity and the distribution of forward-scattered light depended primarily on the FLC birefringence, spontaneous polarization, and the cell path length. In the FLC materials examined, the forward-scattering intensity under ESM drive conditions increased with longer FLC pitch lengths, whereas under TSM conditions stronger forward scattering was observed with increasing FLC spontaneous polarization. Although both TSM and ESM drive conditions displayed a similar angular distribution for forward-scattered light, the intensity of ESM scattering over a 0°–6° range was considerably smaller than that observed in earlier experiments with linearly polarized incident light.

© 1999 Optical Society of America

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