Origins of Electromechanical Strain Ascertained from in situ X-ray and Neutron Diffraction

author: Jacob L. Jones, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, North Carolina State University
published: Feb. 3, 2015,   recorded: January 2015,   views: 3013


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Dielectric and piezoelectric materials are used to store and convert electrical and mechanical energy, making them essential to a broad range of applications and devices including impact and displacement sensors, actuators, capacitors, microelectromechanical systems, diesel fuel injectors, sonar, and ultrasound. In these applications, the dielectric and piezoelectric coefficients define the performance and the limits of device operation. However, the true origin of the material response, and thus the property coefficients, are not well understood because of the numerous and complex microstructural and crystallographic contributions to these properties (e.g., ionic and dipolar polarizability, ferroelastic domain wall motion, interphase boundary motion, the intrinsic piezoelectric effect, etc.). This talk will demonstrate our use of advanced in situ X-ray and neutron scattering methods to discern the underlying mechanics and physics at play in these electro-active materials, ultimately revealing the contribution of these various mechanisms to the property coefficients. In all cases, direct measurements of the contribution from lattice deformation (e.g., piezoelectric) and the motion of intragranular interfaces (e.g., domain walls, interphase boundaries) are quantitatively related to the property coefficients using micromechanics-based formulations.

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