Date Awarded


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)


Applied Science


Joseph S Heyman


Three types of acoustic nonlinearity parameters for solids are discussed. The results of measurements of these parameters for three polymers--polymethyl methacrylate, Polystyrene, and polysulfone--are presented.;The author has developed a new technique, using piezoelectric transducers directly bonded to the specimens, which allows the measurements of fundamental and second harmonics generated in the solids, and thereby the determination of nonlinearity parameter {dollar}\beta\sb3{dollar}, which is the ratio of a linear combination of second- and third-order elastic coefficients to the second-order elastic coefficient.;The second nonlinearity parameter, B/A can be determined from the temperature and pressure derivatives of the sound velocity. We derive its exact relationship for the case of solids. The results from the two techniques are shown to be consistent.;The pressure derivative of the sound velocity is also related to the Gruneisen parameter, which can be used to describe the anharmonicity of interactions in polymer molecules, especially of interchain vibrations. The interchain specific heat for these polymers is then calculated from the Gruneisen parameters; and the characterization of polymers by using these thermoacoustic parameters is discussed.



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