Piezoelectric Materials

Piezo Materials Based on Lead Zirconate Titanate (PZT)

PI Ceramic provides a wide selection of piezoelectric ceramic materials based on modified lead zirconate titanate (PZT) and barium titanate. The designations of "soft" and "hard" piezo ceramics refer to the mobility of the dipoles or domains and hence also to the polarization and depolarization behavior. For actuator applications, ferroelectrically soft piezoceramics with low polarity reversal field strengths are used. Ferroelectrically hard PZT materials are primarily used in high-power acoustic applications. In addition, PI Ceramic offers lead-free piezo ceramics, currently used especially as ultrasonic transducers, and a crystalline actuator material.

For application-specific properties, actuators and transducers can be manufactured from special materials, although the technical implementation has to be checked individually.

The material properties are classified according to the EN 50324 European Standard.

Soft Piezoelectric Materials

Ideal for Piezo Actuators and Sensors

Ferroelectrically soft piezo ceramic materials can be polarized fairly easily even at relatively low field strengths. This is due to the comparably high domain mobility typical for them. The advantages of soft PZT materials are their large piezoelectric charge coefficient, moderate permittivities and high coupling factors.

 

Applications

Important fields of application for soft piezo ceramics are: Actuators for micropositioning and nanopositioning, sensors, such as conventional vibration detectors, ultrasonic transmitters and receivers, e.g., for flow or level measurement, object identification or monitoring, as well as for electro-acoustic applications as sound transducers and microphones, and also as sound pickups on musical instruments.

Material Properties and Classification



PIC151Standard material for actuators of the PICA Stack/Thru and Piezo Tubes series
MaterialModified lead zirconate titanate
Characteristics                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 High permittivity, large coupling factor, high piezoelectric charge coefficient, relatively high Curie temperature      
Suitable for                                                                                                                                                 Actuators, low-power ultrasonic transducers, low-frequency sound transducers
Classification in accordance with EN 50324-1600
MIL-Standard DOD-STD-1376AII

PIC255Standard material for PICA Power, DuraAct, PICA Shear, and Piezo Tubes series
MaterialModified lead zirconate titanate
Characteristics                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Very high Curie temperature, moderate permittivity, high coupling factor, high charge coefficient, low mechanical quality factor, low temperature coefficient, relatively high polarity reversal field strength (>1 kV/mm)       
Suitable for                                                                                                                                                 Actuator applications for dynamic operating conditions and high ambient temperatures, low-power ultrasonic transducers, nonresonant broadband systems, force and acoustic pickup sensors
Classification in accordance with EN 50324-1200
MIL-Standard DOD-STD-1376AII

PIC252Standard material for PICMA® Stack/Chip, PICMA® Bender and DuraAct Power series
MaterialModified lead zirconate titanate
Characteristics                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Very high Curie temperature, moderate permittivity, high coupling factor, high deformation or charge coefficient, low mechanical quality factor, low temperature coefficient, relatively high polarity reversal field strength (>1 kV/mm), low sintering temperature for use in the multilayer tape process         
Suitable for                                                                                                                                                 Actuator applications for dynamic operating conditions and high ambient temperatures, low-power ultrasonic transducers, nonresonant broadband systems, force and acoustic pickup sensors
Classification in accordance with EN 50324-1200
MIL-Standard DOD-STD-1376AII
PIC155
MaterialModified lead zirconate titanate
Characteristics                                                                                                                                                          Very high Curie temperature, moderate permittivity, low mechanical quality factor, low temperature coefficient, high sensitivity (g coefficients)                                                                                         
Suitable forApplications which require a high g coefficient (piezoelectric voltage coefficient), e.g., for microphones and vibration pickups with preamplifier, vibration measurements at low frequencies
Classification in accordance with EN 50324-1200
MIL-Standard DOD-STD-1376AII

PIC153Material for special actuators of the PICA Stack/Thru series and for glued bending actuators
MaterialModified lead zirconate titanate
Characteristics                                                                            Extremely high permittivity and coupling factors, high charge coefficient, Curie temperature around 185 °C       
Suitable forHydrophones, transducers in medical diagnostics and PZT translators
Classification in accordance with EN 50324-1600
MIL-Standard DOD-STD-1376AVI

PIC152                                     
MaterialModified lead zirconate titanate
CharacteristicsPermittivity with extremely low temperature coefficient                                                      
Suitable forForce and acceleration transducers                              
Classification in accordance with EN 50324-1200
MIL-Standard DOD-STD-1376AII

Hard Piezoelectric Materials

High-Performance Material for Ultrasonic Transducers

Ferroelectrically hard PZT materials can be subjected to high electrical and mechanical stresses. Their properties hardly change under these conditions. 

The advantages of these materials are their moderate permittivity, large piezoelectric coupling factors, high mechanical qualities, and very good stability under high mechanical loads and operating field strengths. Low dielectric losses facilitate their continuous use in resonance mode with only low intrinsic heating of the component.

 

Applications

Especially high-power acoustic applications benefit from the properties of hard piezo materials. Examples of their fields of application include ultrasonic cleaning (typically in the kHz frequency range), the machining of materials (ultrasonic welding, bonding, drilling, etc.), ultrasonic processors (e.g., to disperse liquid media), the medical sector (ultrasonic tartar removal, surgical instruments, etc.) and sonar technology.

Material Properties and Classification

 

PIC181                                     
MaterialModified lead zirconate titanate
Characteristics                                                                                        Extremely high mechanical quality factor, good temperature, and time stability of its dielectric and elasticity constants          
Suitable forHigh-power acoustic applications, resonance-mode ultrasonic applications
Classification in accordance with EN 50324-1100
MIL-Standard DOD-STD-1376AI

PIC184                                     
MaterialModified lead zirconate titanate
Characteristics                                                                                        Large electromechanical coupling factor, moderately high quality factor, excellent mechanical and electrical stability             
Suitable forHigh-power ultrasound applications, hydroacoustics, sonar technology
Classification in accordance with EN 50324-1100
MIL-Standard DOD-STD-1376AI

PIC144                                     
MaterialModified lead zirconate titanate
Characteristics                                                                                    Large electromechanical coupling factor, high quality factor, excellent mechanical and electrical stability, high compressive resistance
Suitable for                                                                                                       High-power ultrasound applications, hydroacoustics, sonar technology
Classification in accordance with EN 50324-1100
MIL-Standard DOD-STD-1376AI

PIC241                                     
MaterialModified lead zirconate titanate
Characteristics                                                                                        High mechanical quality factor, higher permittivity than PIC181                                                                                                        
Suitable forHigh-power acoustic applications, piezomotor drives                                                                            
Classification in accordance with EN 50324-1100
MIL-Standard DOD-STD-1376AI

PIC300                                     
MaterialModified lead zirconate titanate
Characteristics                                                                                        Very high Curie temperature                                                                                                                                                                
Suitable forUse at temperatures up to 250 °C (briefly up to 300 °C)                                                           
Classification in accordance with EN 50324-1100
MIL-Standard DOD-STD-1376AI

Lead-Free Piezoelectric Materials

First Steps Towards the Industrial Use of Lead-Free Piezo Materials

With the PIC700 material from laboratory production, PI Ceramic offers the first lead-free piezoceramic material on the market. PIC700 is based on bismuth sodium titanate (BNT) and has very similar characteristics to barium titanate materials. PIC700 is suitable for ultrasonic transducers in the MHz range and for sonar and hydrophone applications.

PIC700
MaterialModified bismuth sodium titanate
Characteristics                                                                                                                                                                     Max. operation temperature 200 °C, low density, high coupling factor of the thickness oscillation, low permittivity, and piezoelectric coupling factors compared with conventional PZT materials
Suitable forUltrasonic transducers >1 MHz

Material Data

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PI Material Data

Specific parameters of the standard materials
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Temperature Dependence of the Coefficients

Temperature curve of the capacitance C

Temperature curve of the resonant frequency of the longitudinal oscillation fs

Temperature curve of the coupling factor of the transverse oscillation k31

Temperature curve of the piezoelectric charge coefficient d31

Specific Characteristics

Thermal Properties Using PZT Ceramic PIC255 as Example

The thermal strain exhibits different behavior in the polarization direction and perpendicularly to it.

Nonpolarized piezoceramic elements are isotropic. The coefficient of expansion is approximately linear at a temperature coefficient of approx 2 × 10-6 / K.

The preferred orientation of the domains in a polarized PZT body leads to anisotropy, which is the cause of the varying thermal expansion behavior.

The effect of successive temperature changes must be taken into account in the application. Large changes in the curve can occur particularly in the first temperature cycle.

Depending on the material, it is possible that the curves deviate strongly from those illustrated.

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Catalog: Piezoelectric Actuators

Components, Technologies, Operation
CAT128 R2
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Catalog: PI Piezoelectric Ceramic Products

Fundamentals, Characteristics and Applications
CAT125
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PI Ceramic REACH Regulation

Customer Information in Accordance with Article 33 (1) of the REACH Regulation
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PI Ceramic RoHS Statement

Restriction of the use of certain hazardous substances in electrical and electronic equipment – RoHS 2011 / 65 / EU
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