Metamaterials are artificial, structured materials that interact with waves in unusual ways, beyond the common properties of natural materials. They are typically realized with small meta-inclusions, which act much in the same way as the molecules of a natural material, to mold the wave interaction as a collective, cumulative effect. They can change the way we typically interact with radio-waves, THz radiation, infrared and light waves, as well as sound, mechanical and many other wave phenomena.
At Silicon Audio, metamaterial concepts inspired the realization of the on-chip radio-wave and acoustic circulators, and are at the basis of many other exciting developments in several fields of technology.
Inspired by research on metamaterials, the time modulation in the on-chip circulator mimics the magnetic bias on a ferromagnetic molecule and is realized via a resonant circuit.
The mechanical motion of the medium in the acoustic circulator mimics the magnetic bias on a ferromagnetic molecule, but is applied on a suitably designed meta-molecule represented by the acoustic cavity.