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By Kohki Takatoh

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Here, we will introduce the characteristics of the rubbing process, and the materials used in the alignment process for LCDs. 1 shows a photograph of a typical rubbing machine. The metal cylinder covered by cloth rotates 100^800 times a minute, and moves up and down relative to the substrate stage. The rubbing pressure is adjusted by changing the gap between the cylinder and the substrate. The glass substrates are fixed to the stage by air suction. The rubbing direction on the substrate can be controlled by rotating the angle of the substrate on the stage.

Pidduck et al. have estimated a local temperature increase of up to 180  C. The Tg of polyimide is 300  C, and thus locally the polyimide would experience a temperature comparable to Tg , facilitating flow and chain realignment [48]. Mada et al. suggested a model where the rubbing effect is local and not uniform, and the temperature of the hot spots caused by textile buffing was estimated to be 230  C and its radius r was estimated at 2 mm [25]. The temperature at the hot spot exceeds the Tg of the polyimide, and it melts and reorients in the rubbing direction at the hot spot.

0 (c) Fig. 28 Alignment models of nematic LC on rubbed polyimide surface. Reproduction by permission from [33]. The relationship between the surface tension of the alignment layer and the pretilt angle of the LC does not always hold. The relationship holds only in the case of certain materials and certain conditions. The surface tension depends on the surface roughness. Rubbing increases the surface polarity because of merging of the side chains into the bulk and also increases the surface roughness in the case of strong rubbing.

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Categories: Solid State Physics