- a quantum of sound or vibratory elastic energy, being the analogue of a photon of electromagnetic energy.
Origin of phonon
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
- physics a quantum of vibrational energy in the acoustic vibrations of a crystal lattice
C20: from phono- + -on
- The quantum of acoustic or vibrational energy. Phonons, like all quanta in quantum mechanics, have wavelike and particlelike properties. Phonons propagate through the vibrating material at the speed of sound in that material. Phonons are especially useful in mathematical models for calculating thermal and vibrational properties of solids.
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