Membrane-based acoustic metamaterials have been reported to achieve 100% absorption, the acoustic analogue of photonic black-hole. However, the bandwidth is usually very narrow around some local resonance frequency, which limits its practical use. To address this limitation and achieve a broadband absorption, this paper first establishes a theoretical framework for unit cells of air-backed diaphragms, modeled as an equivalent mass-spring-dashpot system. Based on the impedance match principle, three different approaches are numerically investigated by tuning the cavity length, the static pressure in the cavity, and the effective damping of perforated plates. A prototype with polyimide diaphragm and 3D printed substrate is then fabricated and characterized using an acoustic impedance tube. Preliminary experiments show the feasibility to achieve an absorption bandwidth of ∼200 Hz at center frequency of 1.45 kHz. This work pays the way for developing a sub-wavelength light weight broadband acoustic absorber for a variety of applications in noise control.

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