Euclidean Frustrated Ribbons

Emmanuel Siéfert*, Ido Levin, Eran Sharon

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Geometrical frustration in thin sheets is ubiquitous across scales in biology and becomes increasingly relevant in technology. Previous research identified the origin of the frustration as the violation of Gauss's Theorema Egregium. Such "Gauss frustration"exhibits rich phenomenology; it may lead to mechanical instabilities, anomalous mechanics, and shape-morphing abilities that can be harnessed in engineering systems. Here we report a new type of geometrical frustration, one that is as general as Gauss frustration. We show that its origin is the violation of Mainardi-Codazzi-Peterson compatibility equations and that it appears in Euclidean sheets. Combining experiments, simulations, and theory, we study the specific case of a Euclidean ribbon with radial and geodesic curvatures. Experiments, conducted using different materials and techniques, reveal shape transitions, symmetry breaking, and spontaneous stress focusing. These observations are quantitatively rationalized using analytic solutions and geometrical arguments. We expect this frustration to play a significant role in natural and engineering systems, specifically in slender 3D printed sheets.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number011062
JournalPhysical Review X
Issue number1
StatePublished - 29 Mar 2021

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