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Comment: EPL style; 7 pages, 5 figures
Mechanical losses of crystalline silicon and calcium fluoride have been analyzed in the temperature range from 5 to 300 K by our novel mechanical spectroscopy method, cryogenic resonant acoustic spectroscopy of bulk materials (CRA spectrocopy). The focus lies on the interpretation of the measured data according to phonon-phonon interactions and defect induced losses in consideration of the excited mode shape.
Fundamental mechanical loss mechanisms exist even in very pure materials, for instance, due to the interactions of excited acoustic waves with thermal phonons. A reduction of these losses in a certain frequency range is desired in high precision instruments like gravitational wave detectors. Systematic analyses of the mechanical losses in those low loss materials are essential for this aim, performed in a highly sensitive experimental set-up. Our novel method of mechanical spectroscopy, cryogenic resonant acoustic spectroscopy of bulk materials (CRA spectroscopy), is well suited to systematically determine losses at the resonant frequencies of the samples of less than 10-9 in the wide temperature range from 5 to 300 K. A high precision set-up in a specially built cryostat allows contactless excitation and readout of the osci...
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