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12 June 2000 High-performance piezoelectric thin fibers and sheets as functional components for smart materials
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Piezoceramic thin fibers and sheets of the same nominal chemical composition represent the active materials basis applied in the industrial research project 'Adaptronik' in Germany. Research activities and latest results concerning these Piezoceramic materials are discussed in the paper. Especially, progress has been attained in the PZT fiber technology. Fibers of complex chemical compositions have been prepared by a sol-gel process with diameters smaller than 20 micrometers showing a porefree microstructure with grains of 2-4 micrometers in diameter. The piezoelectric charge constant d33 was nearly doubled in comparison to the undoped PZT fibers. Ceramic sheets have been supplied by CeramTec AG. The integration of PZT-fibers and -sheets into light weight structures made of glass or carbon fiber reinforced composites, may be realized via functional modules, which are tailored as robust sensing, actuating or damping components. The effective properties of these modules are deduced to provide a reliable database in view of the design and the operation of adaptive structures. Additionally, the preparation of 1-3 composites consisting of PZT-fibers and epoxy polymer was successful. This step opens new potentials for the design of advanced ultrasonic transducers. An aspect ration of 30 of the PZT phase in the transducers represents one of the outstanding features.
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Andreas Schoenecker, Dieter Sporn, Winifred Watzka, Lutz Seffner, Kord Pannkoke, and Peter Wierach "High-performance piezoelectric thin fibers and sheets as functional components for smart materials", Proc. SPIE 3991, Smart Structures and Materials 2000: Industrial and Commercial Applications of Smart Structures Technologies, (12 June 2000); doi: 10.1117/12.388155;

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