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Polariton-based band gap and generation of surface acoustic waves in acoustic superlattice lithium niobate

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We report the presence of surface acoustic wave (SAW) band gap on acoustic superlattice (ASL) in a single-crystal lithium niobate structure. The band gap behavior is determined by calculating the SAW band structure and also by simulating the transmission of an acoustic wave through a finite length section of ASL using finite element analysis. The calculated band gap appears at a frequency twice the value expected from purely acoustic Bragg scattering. We have identified the band gap as originating from a polariton-based mechanism due to the coupling between the electromagnetic wave and the surface vibrations. We have examined the influence of the band gap on SAW generation with the ASL and have shown that the calculated frequency resonance of the SAW lies in the vicinity of the upper stop-band edges. This results in the localization of the SAW in the ASL. Experimental confirmation is achieved through direct measurement of the SAW displacement by laser vibrometry on an actual ASL SAW transducer. The localization of generated SAW to the ASL transducer is observed confirming the prediction of the existence of a band gap. © 2013 AIP Publishing LLC.

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