The liquid crystal orientation on a poly(vinyl cinnamate) or poly(vinyl 4-methoxy-cinnamate) coated solid substrate exposed to linearly polarized UV light has been studied. The angular distribution of the polymer side chains and the photoreaction products was derived as a function of exposure time using a simple assumption about the probability for crosslinking of two side chains. The liquid crystal was assumed to be weakly anchored to the surface but have a degree of order and orientation determined from those of the polymer side chains. The polar and the azimuthal surface coefficients were estimated as a function of exposure time using the Landau–de Gennes theory and the behavior of a twist cell with polymer plates was studied for the values of the calculated surface coefficients.
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