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These on-chip integrated acoustic components could be used in unidirectional waveguides and compact delay lines for high-frequency signal-processing applications.
Information processing in device applications (e.g. cell phones) relies on the low-loss transfer of acoustic waves. Current technologies have limited functionalities that cap communication bandwidth.
The research team led by Chiara Daraio, professor of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Physics, has demonstrated new on-chip integrated acoustic components that advance communications technology via "topological nanoelectromechanical metamaterials (NEMMs), consisting of two-dimensional arrays of free-standing silicon nitride nanomembranes, that operate at high frequencies (10–20 megahertz)." When arranged in a grid at varying patterns, these phononic devices can act as tunable filters for different frequency signals or one-way gates for high-frequency waves.
Jinwoong Cha, Kun Woo Kim, and Chiara Daraio have authored two papers on their findings: "Electrical tuning of elastic wave propagation in nanomechanical lattices at MHz frequencies" in Nature Nanotechnology, and "Experimental realization of on-chip topological nanoelectromechanical metamaterials" in Nature.
Their research was performed in part in the Kavli Nanoscience Institute's nanofabrication facilities.
Read more about their work here.