Unlocking the secrets of piezoelectric-thin-film deformation

Categorie(s) : News, Research

Published : 1 April 2014

That an electrical field induces deformation in piezoelectric materials is well known—and the opposite is also true. However, the mechanisms underlying this deformation remain unexplained. Researchers at Leti have just characterized the mechanism for lead zirconate titanate (PZT) thin films. They took in operando measurements using the Nanocharacterization Platform’s X-ray diffraction equipment, which is suitable for the environment in which the systems are habitually used.
The measurements revealed that the main thin-layer PZT deformation mechanism is phase change, which increases the average volume of the atomic stacks—and not a change in crystal texture as previously believed.
The findings, surprising for thin-film materials, should open up a number of new possibilities for improving the materials’ manufacturing processes and the resulting piezoelectric properties.


Contacts: emmanuel.defay@cea.fr and patrice.gergaud@cea.fr



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