Abstract

The peculiarities of the linearly polarized light beam reflection at the interface within the bulk of a nematic liquid crystal (NLC) cell with different orientations of the director are analyzed. Two methods to create the interface are considered. Combination of the planar and homeotropic orientations of the NLC director is realized by means of a spatially structured electrode under the applied voltage. In-plane patterned azimuthal alignment of the NLC director is created by the patterned rubbing alignment technique. All possible orthogonal orientations of the LC director are considered; the configurations for realization of total internal reflection are determined. The revealed relationship between the propagation of optical beams in a liquid crystal material and polarization of laser radiation has enabled realization of the spatial separation for the orthogonally polarized light beams at the interface between two regions of NLC with different director orientations (domains). Owing to variations in the applied voltage and, hence, in the refractive index gradient, the light beam propagation directions may be controlled electrically.

© 2015 Optical Society of America

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