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The radiative picture

The acoustic bubble is an apparently very simple object, yet with very rich physics: it is made from two media with utterly different acoustic properties (light and soft air, heavy and hard water), separated by a clear boundary. The first study of the dynamics of the bubble was proposed by Marcel Minnaert in 1933, assuming neither water compressibility nor outer excitation. Nevertheless, in compressible water, the bubble interacts with sound well beyond the air-water boundary, which makes it a non-localized scatterer. A thorough theoretical study of this interaction shows deep analogies with electrodynamics (radiation, renormalization). When a whole bubble cloud is incorporated into the water, the sound dispersion relation is deeply modified. Drawing one’s inspiration from the electrodynamics paradigm, one can build a radiation formalism which turns out to be very efficient, leads to an exhaustive description of the problem and reveals significant differences with the other known models (Foldy). This picture can be extended to the study of other questions, such as the polariton problem in solid state physics.


- M. Devaud, T. Hocquet, J.-C. Bacri, and V. Leroy, "The Minnaert bubble: an acoustic approach", Eur. J. Phys. 29 1263 (2008)

- M. Devaud, T. Hocquet, and V. Leroy, "Sound propagation in a monodisperse bubble cloud: From the crystal to the glass", Eur. Phys. J. E 32 13 (2010)

Contact : Published on / Publié le 5 November 2010