Tunable unidirectional sound propagation through a sonic-crystal-based acoustic diode

Phys Rev Lett. 2011 Feb 25;106(8):084301. doi: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.106.084301. Epub 2011 Feb 23.


Nonreciprocal wave propagation typically requires strong nonlinear materials to break time reversal symmetry. Here, we utilized a sonic-crystal-based acoustic diode that had broken spatial inversion symmetry and experimentally realized sound unidirectional transmission in this acoustic diode. These novel phenomena are attributed to different mode transitions as well as their associated different energy conversion efficiencies among different diffraction orders at two sides of the diode. This nonreciprocal sound transmission could be systematically controlled by simply mechanically rotating the square rods of the sonic crystal. Different from nonreciprocity due to the nonlinear acoustic effect and broken time reversal symmetry, this new model leads to a one-way effect with higher efficiency, broader bandwidth, and much less power consumption, showing promising applications in various sound devices.