Mathematical modelling of phononic nanoplate and its size-dependent dispersion and topological properties

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journal

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  • Weijian Zhou
  • Yingjie Chen
  • Weiqiu Chen
  • J.N. Reddy


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)774-790
Journal / PublicationApplied Mathematical Modelling
Online published6 Aug 2020
Publication statusOnline published - 6 Aug 2020


A new model with analysis for the propagation of flexural waves in a phononic plate at nanoscale is developed. The Gurtin-Murdoch theory for surface elasticity is adopted to model the surface heterogeneity. The Mindlin (or first-order) plate theory is further generalized to establish the governing equations for flexural waves in a phononic plate with surface effect, for which the plane wave expansion method is applied to derive the dispersion relation. A numerical model is developed using the finite element method and very good consistency between theory and numerical solution is observed. It is found that the surface density and the surface residual stress play the main role that affects the band structures. The surface effect can be approximately regarded as the competition between frequency decrease due to surface density and frequency increase caused by surface residual stress, which effectively increases the low-frequency bands but decreases the high-frequency bands. The quantum spin Hall effect is observed in the phononic plate at nanoscale, and the surface effect is studied numerically. By applying the k.p perturbation method, a theoretical framework is established to calculate the spin Chern number, which is an important topological invariant that determines the quantum spin Hall effect. Based on the topological analysis, an efficient waveguide with a zig-zag path is designed, in which a topologically protected wave in the interface state can robustly propagate along the path against disorders. The theory and numerical study developed in this paper will help better understand the size-dependent quantum spin Hall effect in nanostructures and it may also provide guidance for the design of topological wave devices at nanoscale.

Research Area(s)

  • Interface state, Nanoscale, Phononic crystal, Quantum spin Hall effect, Surface effect