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Phys Rev Lett. 2008 May 16;100(19):194301. Epub 2008 May 13.

Simultaneous occurrence of structure-directed and particle-resonance-induced phononic gaps in colloidal films.

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Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research, Mainz, Germany.


We report on the observation of two hypersonic phononic gaps of different nature in three-dimensional colloidal films of nanospheres using Brillouin light scattering. One is a Bragg gap occurring at the edge of the first Brillouin zone along a high-symmetry crystal direction. The other is a hybridization gap in crystalline and amorphous films, originating from the interaction of the band of quadrupole particle eigenmodes with the acoustic effective-medium band, and its frequency position compares well with the computed lowest eigenfrequency. Structural disorder eliminates the Bragg gap, while the hybridization gap is robust.

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