Observation of Chirality-Induced Roton-Like Dispersion in a 3D Micropolar Elastic Metamaterial

  • Author:

    Y. Chen, J.L.G. Schneider, M.F. Groß, K. Wang, S. Kalt, P. Scott, M. Kadic, and M. Wegener

  • Source:

    Adv. Funct. Mater. 2302699 (2023)

  • Date: 6.06.2023
  • Abstract:

    A theoretical paper based on chiral micropolar effective-medium theory suggested the possibility of unusual roton-like acoustical-phonon dispersion relations in 3D elastic materials. Here, as a first novelty, the corresponding inverse problem is solved, that is, a specific 3D chiral elastic metamaterial structure is designed, the behavior of which follows this effective-medium description. The metamaterial structure is based on a simple-cubic lattice of cubes, each of which not only has three translational but also three rotational degrees of freedom. The additional rotational degrees of freedom are crucial within micropolar elasticity. The cubes and their degrees of freedom are coupled by a chiral network of slender rods. As a second novelty, this complex metamaterial is manufactured in polymer form by 3D laser printing and its behavior is characterized experimentally by phonon-band-structure measurements. The results of these measurements, microstructure finite-element calculations, and solutions of micropolar effective-medium theory are in good agreement. The roton-like dispersion behavior of the lowest phonon branch results from two aspects. First, chirality splits the transverse acoustical branches as well as the transverse optical branches. Second, chirality leads to an ultrastrong coupling and hybridization of chiral acoustical and optical phonons at finite wavevectors.