Tuesday, August 7, 2012

1208.1041 (Yakov Itin et al.)

The constitutive tensor of linear elasticity: its decompositions, Cauchy
relations, null Lagrangians, and wave propagation

Yakov Itin, Friedrich W. Hehl
In linear anisotropic elasticity, the elastic properties of a medium are described by the fourth rank elasticity tensor C. The decomposition of C into a partially symmetric tensor M and a partially antisymmetric tensors N is often used in the literature. An alternative, less well-known decomposition, into the completely symmetric part S of C plus the reminder A, turns out to be irreducible under the 3-dimensional general linear group. We show that the SA-decomposition is unique, irreducible, and preserves the symmetries of the elasticity tensor. The MN-decomposition fails to have these desirable properties and is such inferior from a physical point of view. Various applications of the SA-decomposition are discussed: the Cauchy relations (vanishing of A), the non-existence of elastic null Lagrangians, the decomposition of the elastic energy and of the acoustic wave propagation. The acoustic or Christoffel tensor is split in a Cauchy and a non-Cauchy part. The Cauchy part governs the longitudinal wave propagation. We provide explicit examples of the effectiveness of the SA-decomposition. A complete class of anisotropic media is proposed that allows pure polarizations in arbitrary directions, similarly as in an isotropic medium.
View original: http://arxiv.org/abs/1208.1041

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