Mechanical & Materials Engineering, Department of


Date of this Version



arXiv:2207.01728v1 [nlin.CD] 4 Jul 2022


We study the dynamics of solitary waves traveling in a one-dimensional chain of bistable elements in the presence of a local inhomogeneity (`defect'). Numerical simulations reveal that depending upon its initial speed, an incoming solitary wave can get transmitted, captured or reflected upon interaction with the defect. The dynamics are dominated by energy exchange between the wave and a breather mode localized at the defect. We derive a reduced-order two degree of freedom Hamiltonian model for wave-breather interaction, and analyze it using dynamical systems techniques. Lobe dynamics analysis reveals the fine structure of phase space that leads to the complicated dynamics in this system. This work is a step towards developing a rational approach to defect engineering for manipulating nonlinear waves in mechanical metamaterials.