A squash ball almost doesn't bounce; a Superball bounces first left then right, seeming to have a mind of its own. Remarkable and complex elastic behavior isn't confined to sports equipment and toys. Indeed, it can be found in some surprising places. When the elastic behavior of a rock is probed, for instance, it shows extreme nonlinearity hysteresis and discrete memory (the Flint‐stones could have had a computer that used a sandstone for random‐access memory). Rocks are an example of a class of unusual elastic materials that includes sand. soil, cement, concrete, ceramics and, it turns out, damaged materials, Many members of this class are the blue‐collar materials of daily life: They are in the bridges we cross on the way to work, the roofs over our heads and the ground beneath our cities—such as the Los Angeles basin (home to many earthquakes). The elastic behavior of these materials is of more than academic interest.
Nonlinear Mesoscopic Elasticity: Evidence for a New Class of Materials
Robert A. Guyer, Paul A. Johnson; Nonlinear Mesoscopic Elasticity: Evidence for a New Class of Materials. Physics Today 1 April 1999; 52 (4): 30–36. https://doi.org/10.1063/1.882648
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