A better way to control crystal vibrations

The vibrational motion of an atom in a crystal propagates to neighboring atoms, which leads to wavelike propagation of the vibrations throughout the crystal. The way in which these natural vibrations travel through the crystalline structure determine fundamental properties of the material. Now, researchers have shown that by swapping out just a small fraction of a material’s atoms with atoms of a different element, they can control the speed and frequencies of these vibrations

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