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The synthesis and characterisation of lead-free piezoelectric ceramics

Roberts, William Michael (2012)
M.Res. thesis, University of Birmingham.

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With a growing awareness of the environmental and health hazards of lead, there has been renewed interest in developing lead-free alternatives to lead zirconate titanate (PZT), which currently dominates the market for piezoelectric materials. Some of the most promising lead-free piezoelectric materials are those based on potassium sodium niobate (KNN). This project involved the fabrication and characterisation of lithium-doped KNN ceramic, which has been reported to show excellent piezoelectric properties. Samples containing 0-9 mol% Li were synthesised by a conventional mixed oxide method, before their key functional properties were analysed. The addition of lithium was found to promote grain growth within the microstructure, resulting in a denser ceramic. A phase transformation from the orthorhombic to tetragonal crystal structure was also identified. Optimum piezoelectric properties were observed in KNN samples containing 7 mol% Li (k\(_p\)=0.33, k\(_t\)=0.37, d\(_{33}\)=126 pC/N). Further optimisation of the fabrication route and continued investigation into the most effective dopants could potentially bring KNN on a par with many commercial lead-based ceramics.

Type of Work:M.Res. thesis.
Supervisor(s):Button, Tim W
School/Faculty:Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Engineering & Physical Sciences
Department:Department of Metallurgy and Materials, School of Engineering
Subjects:TN Mining engineering. Metallurgy
TP Chemical technology
TS Manufactures
Institution:University of Birmingham
ID Code:3442
This unpublished thesis/dissertation is copyright of the author and/or third parties. The intellectual property rights of the author or third parties in respect of this work are as defined by The Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 or as modified by any successor legislation. Any use made of information contained in this thesis/dissertation must be in accordance with that legislation and must be properly acknowledged. Further distribution or reproduction in any format is prohibited without the permission of the copyright holder.
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