Transition Mechanisms and Phases of Hexane Physisorbed on Graphite
C.L. Pint, M.W. Roth and C. Wexler
University of Northern Iowa, US
We study the transition mechanisms in submonolayer, monolayer, and supermonolayer hexane adsorbed onto graphite, and find that the driving mechanism for the nematic (liquid crystal) phase observed is out-of-plane tilting caused by molecular in-plane rolling, and that the mechanism for the nematic-to-fluid phase transition is a combition of primarily a ''tilt-lock'' mechanism accompanied by a small amount of intramolecular gauche defects. We find that in-plane room for this system is paramount to understanding these phases, and believe that our understanding of the effects of in-plane room can be applied to other nanoscale systems.
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Nanotech 2005 Conference Program Abstract