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Piezoelectric Property Enhancement of PZT Thick Film via Pulsed Flash Poling during Sintering

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journal contribution
posted on 11.12.2018, 00:00 by Jing Ouyang, Denis Cormier, David A. Borkholder
Lead zirconate titanate (PZT) is a widely used piezoelectric material due to its high piezoelectric response. High-temperature thermal sintering and poling are two important steps to obtain a high piezoelectric property PZT film by densifying the film and reorienting the dipoles along the desired direction, respectively. However, these two steps are processed separately, which increases the duration and complexity of the process. Moreover, a high-temperature process limits the selection of electrode and substrate material to those materials with very high melting points. This paper experimentally demonstrates the feasibility of  sintering and poling simultaneously, providing a novel approach to prepare PZT film. Moreover, this paper investigates the effect of cyclic temperature excursions above and below the Curie temperature on the piezoelectric properties of PZT thick film. Photonic sintering with high-intensity, short-duration pulsed flashes was used to fuse and merge PZT particles. Simultaneously, an electrical poling field (20 kV/cm) was applied through the PZT film to reorient the PZT dipoles. The entire processing duration was less than 5 min. The resultant piezoelectric property of the PZT film was analyzed, yielding high g33 (22.6 × 10–3 Vm/N), d33 (626 × 10–12 m/V), and permittivity (3130) values, indicating good sensing and actuating capabilities. This enhanced piezoelectric performance is superior to the groups of PZT films prepared using traditional processes. This approach has potential applications for obtaining high-performance piezoelectric devices, such as piezoelectric energy harvesters, memory storage devices, or bulk acoustic wave resonators.