The work presented in this thesis is concerned with the propagation of acoustic waves through phononic crystal systems and their ability to attenuate sound in the low frequency regime. The plane wave expansion method and finite element method are utilised to investigate the properties of conventional phononic crystal systems. The acoustic band structure and transmission measurements of such systems are computed and verified experimentally. Good agreement between band gap locations for the investigative methods detailed is found. The well known link between the frequency range a phononic crystal can attenuate sound over and its lattice parameter is confirmed. This leads to a reduction in its usefulness as a viable noise barrier technology, due to the necessary increase in overall crystal size. To overcome this restriction the concept of an acoustically resonant phononic crystal system is proposed, which utilises acoustic resonances, similar to Helmholtz resonance, to form additional band gaps that are decoupled from the lattice periodicity of the phononic crystal system. An acoustically resonant phononic crystal system is constructed and experimental transmission measurements carried out to verify the existence of separate attenuation mechanisms. Experimental attenuation levels achieved by Bragg formation and resonance reach 25dB. The two separate attenuation mechanisms present in the acoustically resonant phononic crystal, increase the efficiency of its performance in the low frequency regime, whilst maintaining a reduced crystal size for viable noise barrier technology. Methods to optimise acoustically resonant phononic crystal systems and to increase their performance in the lower frequency regime are discussed, namely by introducing the Matryoshka acoustically resonant phononic crystal system, where each scattering unit is composed of multiple concentric C-shape inclusions.
A Doctoral Thesis. Submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the award of Doctor of Philosophy of Loughborough University.