Non-Newtonian Topological Mechanical Metamaterials Using Feedback Control

Lea Sirota*, Roni Ilan, Yair Shokef, Yoav Lahini

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We introduce a method to design topological mechanical metamaterials that are not constrained by Newtonian dynamics. The unit cells in a mechanical lattice are subjected to active feedback forces that are processed through autonomous controllers preprogrammed to generate the desired local response in real time. As an example, we focus on the quantum Haldane model, which is a two-band system with nonreciprocal coupling terms, the implementation of which in mechanical systems requires violating Newton's third law. We demonstrate that the required topological phase characterized by chiral edge modes can be achieved in an analogous mechanical system only with closed-loop control. We then show that our approach enables us to realize, a modified version of the Haldane model in a mechanical metamaterial. Here, the complex-valued couplings are polarized in a way that modes on opposite edges of a lattice propagate in the same direction, and are balanced by counterpropagating bulk modes. The proposed method is general and flexible, and could be used to realize arbitrary lattice parameters, such as nonlocal or nonlinear couplings, time-dependent potentials, non-Hermitian dynamics, and more, on a single platform.

Original languageEnglish
Article number256802
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Issue number25
StatePublished - 18 Dec 2020


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