An international group of researchers, composed of Anastasia Krushinskaya Bosia Federico (University of Turin), Marco Miniaci (Le Havre University) and Nicola Punja (University of Trento), with the support of the London University of Queen Maria and the Space Agency of Italy established that the geometry of the web can be used to reduce noise pollution.
Since low frequency sounds are characterized by a wavelength, the protection they require thick walls, which considerably increase the weight of engineering structures. An alternative approach is to use the new metamaterials.
If the traditional soundproofing based on the thickness of the material, metamaterials resist the sound of their complex sub-wavelength structure. The result is a thin partition can be as effective as a massive wall.
In the new study, the researchers relied on they have developed a concept called “labyrinth of metamaterials” or “coil”. The idea is that materials consist of layers of folded and zig-zag channels are located relative to each other as in a maze.
The authors showed that this geometry effectively reduces the force of the elastic waves. Scientists have optimized the structure of the maze, giving the channels of square section. The result is a design resembling a spider web, the air cavity which can even be used to change the width of network channels.
According to scientists, the “spider maze” can be made of aluminum, which allows to use these structures in various fields. One of the priorities is protection from the damaging noise pollution, which is a major problem of modern cities.