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Acoustic Waves - From Microdevices to Helioseismology
The concept of acoustic wave is a pervasive one, which emerges in any type of medium, from solids to plasmas, at length and time scales ranging from sub-micrometric layers in microdevices to seismic waves in the Sun's interior. This book presents several aspects of the active research ongoing in this field. Theoretical efforts are leading to a deeper understanding of phenomena, also in complicated environments like the solar surface boundary. Acoustic waves are a flexible probe to investigate the properties of very different systems, from thin inorganic layers to ripening cheese to biological systems. Acoustic waves are also a tool to manipulate matter, from the delicate evaporation of biomolecules to be analysed, to the phase transitions induced by intense shock waves. And a whole class of widespread microdevices, including filters and sensors, is based on the behaviour of acoustic waves propagating in thin layers. The search for better performances is driving to new materials for these devices, and to more refined tools for their analysis.