Dr Maclennan's research interests center on determining the structure and electro-optic properties of ferroelectric liquid crystals, including bent-core and de Vries type materials, and on understanding the textures and phase transitions of freely-suspended liquid crystal films, including the ordering behavior of islands and liquid droplets. Self-assembled monolayers and topographically patterned surfaces are being studied as novel liquid crystal alignment surfaces. He has developed extensive computer code for modeling the optical response of liquid crystals in applied fields and the reorientation dynamics of azo-SAMs.
condensed matter physics and materials science, liquid crystals, ferroelectrics, optoelectronics, thin films
PHYS 1230 - Light and Color for Nonscientists
Fall 2019 / Fall 2021 / Fall 2023
Discusses light, color, vision, and perception. Covers reflection, refraction, lenses, and applications to photography and other methods of light sensing. Other topics include lasers and holography. Course is geared toward nonscience majors. Department enforced prereq., high school algebra or equivalent. Should not be taken by students with a math MAPS deficiency.