Symmetry-Breaking-Induced Frequency Combs in Graphene Resonators

Ata Keşkekler*, Hadi Arjmandi-Tash, Peter G. Steeneken, Farbod Alijani*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
33 Downloads (Pure)


Nonlinearities are inherent to the dynamics of two-dimensional materials. Phenomena-like intermodal coupling already arise at amplitudes of only a few nanometers, and a range of unexplored effects still awaits to be harnessed. Here, we demonstrate a route for generating mechanical frequency combs in graphene resonators undergoing symmetry-breaking forces. We use electrostatic force to break the membrane's out-of-plane symmetry and tune its resonance frequency toward a one-to-two internal resonance, thus achieving strong coupling between two of its mechanical modes. When increasing the drive level, we observe splitting of the fundamental resonance peak, followed by the emergence of a frequency comb regime. We attribute the observed physics to a nonsymmetric restoring potential and show that the frequency comb regime is mediated by Neimark bifurcation of the periodic solution. These results demonstrate that mechanical frequency combs and chaotic dynamics in 2D material resonators can emerge near internal resonances due to symmetry-breaking.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6048-6054
JournalNano Letters
Issue number15
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • frequency combs
  • graphene
  • internal resonance
  • Nanoelectromechanical systems (NEMS)
  • nonlinear dynamics

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