Metamaterials, man-made composites that are scaled smaller than the wavelength, have demonstrated a huge potential for application in acoustics, allowing the production of sub-wavelength acoustic absorbers, acoustic invisibility, perfect acoustic mirrors and acoustic lenses for hyper focusing, and acoustic illusions and enabling new degrees of freedom in the control of the acoustic field. The zero, or even negative, refractive sound index of metamaterials offers possibilities for the control of acoustic patterns and sound at sub-wavelength scales. Despite the tremendous growth in research on acoustic metamaterials during the last decade, the potential of metamaterial-based technologies in aeronautics has still not been fully explored, and its utilization is still in its infancy. Thus, the principal concepts mentioned above could very well provide a means to develop devices that allow the mitigation of the impact of civil aviation noise on the community. This paper gives a review of the most relevant works on acoustic metamaterials, analyzing them for their potential applicability in aeronautics, and, in this process, identifying possible implementation areas and interesting metabehaviors. It also identifies some technical challenges and possible future directions for research with the goal of unveiling the potential of metamaterials technology in aeronautics.
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