We consider a system of anisotropic plates in the three-dimensional continuum, interacting via purely hard core interactions. We assume that the particles have a finite number of allowed orientations. In a suitable range of densities, we prove the existence of a uni-axial nematic phase, characterized by long range orientational order (the minor axes are aligned parallel to each other, while the major axes are not) and no translational order. The proof is based on a coarse graining procedure, which allows us to map the plate model into a contour model, and in a rigorous control of the resulting contour theory, via Pirogov-Sinai methods.
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