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What will happen when sound wave hits the metals with very high frequency can it make the electrons to exited state. If it happens then what will be the state of that metal

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2 Answers 2

The speed of sound in a metal is dictated by the nuclear lattice, and vibrations thereof, which are referred to as phonons. The energy of the highest energy phonons is still at least an order of magnitude below the typical electron energy, but it is possible through electron phonon coupling that a phonon could excite an electron in a narrow region of energies around the Fermi energy.

As for the state of the metal - in this case I've discussed above, the metal is still a metal, and solid.

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Why the down vote? –  Jen May 26 '11 at 20:31
    
I didn't down vote, but one should note that sound waves in water can reach temperatures high enough to produce visible light. See sonoluminescence: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sonoluminescence 20,000 degrees Kelvin or 18 eV. –  Carl Brannen Jun 26 '11 at 5:45

Your question is very general, so I will give a general answer: Yes, sound waves at very high frequency can excite metals. It's called, "sonic welding," and I've personally seen machines which do it.

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As far as I know, sonic welding heats metals, but does not excite atomic transitions. –  Colin K May 25 '11 at 16:28
    
You're no doubt right that atomic transitions aren't excited, but it does move electrons (conduction electrons, to be specific) into higher-energy states than they were in before. (That's pretty much what it means to heat a metal!) Personally, I'd call that putting electrons into an excited state. –  Ted Bunn May 25 '11 at 18:17
    
Agreed, Ted. In addition, if the metal is hot enough to feel heat or visible light coming off of it (I suspect so, but have not been allowed to observe THAT closely), then you have radiation. The only mechanism I can think of which would do that in this instance is electrons popping out of and back into their stable energy states. –  Vintage May 26 '11 at 17:33

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