Acoustic axes in elasticity

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24 Scopus citations


New results are presented for the degeneracy condition of elastic waves in anisotropic materials. The condition for the existence of acoustic axes involves a traceless symmetric third order tensor that must vanish identically. It is shown that all previous representations of the degeneracy condition follow from this acoustic axis tensor . The conditions for existence of acoustic axes in elastic crystals of orthorhombic, tetragonal, hexagonal and cubic (RTHC) symmetry are reinterpreted using the geometrical methods developed here. Application to weakly anisotropic solids is discussed, and it is shown that the satisfaction of the acoustic axes conditions to first order in anisotropy does not in general coincide with true acoustic axes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)315-328
Number of pages14
JournalWave Motion
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2004

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)
  • Computational Mathematics
  • Applied Mathematics


  • Acoustic axes
  • Anisotropic elasticity
  • Degeneracy
  • Elastic waves


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