Title

A wind-powered one-way bistable medium with parity effects

Publication Date

2-2017

Document Type

Article

Volume

27

Issue

2

Abstract

We describe the design, construction, and dynamics of low-cost mechanical arrays of 3D-printed bistable elements whose shapes interact with wind to couple them one-way. Unlike earlier hydromechanical unidirectional arrays, our aeromechanical one-way arrays are simpler, easier to study, and exhibit a broader range of phenomena. Solitary wavesor solitons propagate in one direction at speeds proportional to wind speeds. Periodic boundaries enable solitons to annihilate in pairs in arrays with an even number of elements. Solitons propagate indefinitely in odd arrays that frustrate pairing. Large noise spontaneously creates soliton-antisoliton pairs. Soliton annihilation times increase quadratically with initial separations, as expected for random-walk models of soliton collisions.

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