Wednesday, September 7, 2011

What is a Phonon?

A phonon is the amount of energy found within a vibration. When an object vibrates, phonon is formed in that object. Similar to "photon", phonon is also a quantum particle within a light wave. This word was coined from a Greek word, "phone" which means sound or voice.
Structure of Phonon

This was first theorized by Igor Tamm. His ideas were integrated to Quantum Mechanics after the introduction of this concept.  Phonon is a phenomenon. We can't specifically extract this phenomenon as a physical object.

They behave as individual particles, but they show interaction within. These interaction forms many chains. Energy is transferred from one phonon from time to time. 

Phonon's uses
Creating very efficient conducting and insulating materials is easy with the better understanding of phonon's structure. Fields of computer science and power storage, requires the use of insulation much. A closer look at phonon's operation and interaction helps us to build useful materials in the future.
Frequency and Energy

Researchers at Massachusetts Institute of Technology created a sample in the year 2010. They combined several layers of cyrstal materials. This was done is a particular pattern that was efficient in reflecting phonon.