Negative stiffness-induced extreme viscoelastic mechanical properties: Stability and dynamics

Yun Che Wang, Roderic Lakes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)


Use of negative stiffness inclusions allows one to exceed the classic bounds upon overall mechanical properties of composite materials. We here analyse discrete viscoelastic 'spring' systems with negative stiffness elements to demonstrate the origin of extreme properties, and analyse the stability and dynamics of the systems. Two different models are analysed: one requires geometrical nonlinear analysis with pre-load as a negative stiffness source and the other is a linearized model with a direct application of negative stiffness. Material linearity is assumed for both models. The metastability is controlled by a viscous element. In the stable regime, extreme high mechanical damping tan δ can be obtained at low frequency. In the metastable regime, singular resonance-like responses occur in tan δ. The pre-stressed viscoelastic system is stable at the equilibrium point with maximal overall compliance and is metastable when tuned for maximal overall stiffness. A reversal in the relationship between the magnitude of complex modulus and frequency is also observed. The experimental observability of the singularities in tan δ is discussed in the context of designed composites and poly-crystalline solids with metastable grain boundaries.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3785-3801
Number of pages17
JournalPhilosophical Magazine
Issue number35
Publication statusPublished - 2004 Dec 11

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Condensed Matter Physics

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