Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Sheet Metal That Never Rattles

02.04.2014

First step towards “programmable materials“

Although the “programmable material” still only works in a one-dimensional model construction, it has already demonstrated it unusual capabilities: The research project entitled Phononic Crystal with Adaptive Connectivity has just been published in the journal Advanced Materials (www.advmat.de). The first step towards mechanical components with freely programmable properties has thus been achieved.

The working model used by the researchers consists of a one-meter by one-centimeter aluminum plate that is one millimeter thick. This sheet-metal strip can vibrate at different frequencies. In order to control the wave propagation, ten small aluminum cylinders (7 mm thick, 1 cm high) are attached to the metal. Between the sheet and the cylinders sit piezo discs, which can be stimulated electronically and change their thickness in a flash. This ultimately enables the team headed by project supervisor Andrea Bergamini to control exactly whether and how waves are allowed to propagate in the sheet-metal strip. The aluminum strip thus turns into a so-called adaptive phononic crystal – a material with adaptable properties.

Adaptation in fractions of a second

The piezo controls can now be set in such a way that waves are able to propagate through the sheet-metal strip “perfectly normally”, i.e. as though no aluminum cylinders were attached to it. Another configuration enables a certain frequency spectrum of the waves to be absorbed. And this muffling is variable as the piezo elements can alter their elastic properties electronically in fractions of a second – from low to high stiffness. Bergamini explains what could develop from the research results: “Imagine you produce a sheet of metal, imprinted with an electronic circuit and small piezo elements at regular intervals. This sheet metal could be programmed electronically to block a certain vibration frequency. The interesting thing is that even if you cut off part of the sheet, the waves in the cropped section would largely spread in the same way as in the initial piece.” This method could be used on three-dimensional components.

Such a “metamaterial” could fundamentally revolutionize mechanical engineering and plant construction. Until now, the vibration properties were already determined in the selection of material and the geometry of the part. In future, the material could react to current vibration readings and adapt its vibration properties at lightning speed.

Further research on “programmable materials“

During the Phononic Crystal with Adaptive Connectivity research project, Empa-researcher Bergamini collaborated with Paolo Ermanni’s group at ETH Zurich and Massimo Ruzzene from Georgia Institute of Technology. In a follow-up project, the programmability of the prototype is to be expanded: “Until now, every piezo element has reacted to vibrations alone, independent of its neighbor,” explains Bergamini. “As the next step, we want to interconnect the elements with each other to be able to control them jointly or in a coordinated fashion.”

Info: Metamaterials (Wikipedia - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metamaterial)
Metamaterials are artificial media structured on a size scale smaller than the wavelength of external stimuli. Materials of interest exhibit properties not found in nature, such as negative index of refraction. They are cellular assemblies of multiple elements fashioned from materials including metals and plastics, arranged in periodic patterns. Metamaterials gain their properties not from their constituents, but from their exactingly-designed structures. Their precise shape, geometry, size, orientation and arrangement can affect light or sound in a manner that is unachievable with conventional materials.

Dr. Andrea Bergamini | newswise
Further information:
http://www.empa.ch

Further reports about: Connectivity Empa Metal Sheet Technology construction geometry materials properties waves

More articles from Materials Sciences:

nachricht A new tool for discovering nanoporous materials
23.05.2017 | Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne

nachricht Did you know that packaging is becoming intelligent through flash systems?
23.05.2017 | Heraeus Noblelight GmbH

All articles from Materials Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: A quantum walk of photons

Physicists from the University of Würzburg are capable of generating identical looking single light particles at the push of a button. Two new studies now demonstrate the potential this method holds.

The quantum computer has fuelled the imagination of scientists for decades: It is based on fundamentally different phenomena than a conventional computer....

Im Focus: Turmoil in sluggish electrons’ existence

An international team of physicists has monitored the scattering behaviour of electrons in a non-conducting material in real-time. Their insights could be beneficial for radiotherapy.

We can refer to electrons in non-conducting materials as ‘sluggish’. Typically, they remain fixed in a location, deep inside an atomic composite. It is hence...

Im Focus: Wafer-thin Magnetic Materials Developed for Future Quantum Technologies

Two-dimensional magnetic structures are regarded as a promising material for new types of data storage, since the magnetic properties of individual molecular building blocks can be investigated and modified. For the first time, researchers have now produced a wafer-thin ferrimagnet, in which molecules with different magnetic centers arrange themselves on a gold surface to form a checkerboard pattern. Scientists at the Swiss Nanoscience Institute at the University of Basel and the Paul Scherrer Institute published their findings in the journal Nature Communications.

Ferrimagnets are composed of two centers which are magnetized at different strengths and point in opposing directions. Two-dimensional, quasi-flat ferrimagnets...

Im Focus: World's thinnest hologram paves path to new 3-D world

Nano-hologram paves way for integration of 3-D holography into everyday electronics

An Australian-Chinese research team has created the world's thinnest hologram, paving the way towards the integration of 3D holography into everyday...

Im Focus: Using graphene to create quantum bits

In the race to produce a quantum computer, a number of projects are seeking a way to create quantum bits -- or qubits -- that are stable, meaning they are not much affected by changes in their environment. This normally needs highly nonlinear non-dissipative elements capable of functioning at very low temperatures.

In pursuit of this goal, researchers at EPFL's Laboratory of Photonics and Quantum Measurements LPQM (STI/SB), have investigated a nonlinear graphene-based...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Marine Conservation: IASS Contributes to UN Ocean Conference in New York on 5-9 June

24.05.2017 | Event News

AWK Aachen Machine Tool Colloquium 2017: Internet of Production for Agile Enterprises

23.05.2017 | Event News

Dortmund MST Conference presents Individualized Healthcare Solutions with micro and nanotechnology

22.05.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Physicists discover mechanism behind granular capillary effect

24.05.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Measured for the first time: Direction of light waves changed by quantum effect

24.05.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Marine Conservation: IASS Contributes to UN Ocean Conference in New York on 5-9 June

24.05.2017 | Event News

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>