Perspective: Acoustic metamaterials in transition: Acoustic metamaterials in transition

Ying Wu, Min Yang, Ping Sheng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations

Abstract

Acoustic metamaterials derive their novel characteristics from the interaction between acoustic waves with designed structures. Since its inception seventeen years ago, the field has been driven by fundamental geometric and physical principles that guide the structure design rules as well as provide the basis for wave functionalities. Recent examples include resonance-based acoustic metasurfaces that offer flexible control of acoustic wave propagation such as focusing and re-direction; parity-time (PT)-symmetric acoustics that utilizes the general concept of pairing loss and gain to achieve perfect absorption at a single frequency; and topological phononics that can provide one-way edge state propagation. However, such novel functionalities are not without constraints. Metasurface elements rely on resonances to enhance their coupling to the incident wave; hence, its functionality is limited to a narrow frequency band. Topological phononics is the result of the special lattice symmetry that must be fixed at the fabrication stage. Overcoming such constraints naturally forms the basis for further developments. We identify two emergent directions: Integration of acoustic metamaterial elements for achieving broadband characteristics as well as acoustic wave manipulation tasks more complex than the single demonstrative functionality; and active acoustic metamaterials that can adapt to environment as well as to go beyond the constraints on the passive acoustic metamaterials. Examples of a successful recent integration of multi-resonators in achieving broadband sound absorption can be found in optimal sound-absorbing structures, which utilize causality constraint as a design tool in realizing the target-set absorption spectrum with a minimal sample thickness. Active acoustic metamaterials have also demonstrated the capability to tune bandgaps as well as to alter property of resonances in real time through stiffening of the spring constants, in addition to the PT symmetric acoustics that can achieve unprecedented functionalities. These emergent directions portend the transitioning of the field from the stage of novelty demonstrations to imminent applications of some acoustic metamaterials to select real-world problems, supported by an active research endeavor that continues to push the boundary of possibilities.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number090901
Pages (from-to)090901
JournalJournal of Applied Physics
Volume123
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 15 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)

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