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Proceedings Paper

Microstructural modeling of ferroic switching and phase transitions in PZT
Author(s): Joshua Robbins; Tariq A. Khraishi; Pavel M. Chaplya
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Paper Abstract

Niobium doped Lead Zirconate Titanate (PZT) with a Zr/Ti ratio of 95/5 (i.e., PZT 95/5-2Nb) is a ferroelectric with a rhombohedral structure at room temperature. A crystal (or a subdomain within a crystal) exhibits a spontaneous polarization in any one of eight crystallographically equivalent directions. Such a material becomes polarized when subjected to a large electric field. When the electric field is removed, a remanent polarization remains and a bound charge is stored. A displacive phase transition from a rhombohedral ferroelectric phase to an orthorhombic anti-ferroelectric phase can be induced with the application of a mechanical load. When this occurs, the material becomes depoled and the bound charge is released. The polycrystalline character of PZT 95/5-2Nb leads to highly non-uniform fields at the grain scale. These local fields lead to very complex material behavior during mechanical depoling that has important implications to device design and performance. This paper presents a microstructurally based numerical model that describes the 3D non-linear behavior of ferroelectric ceramics. The model resolves the structure of polycrystals directly in the topology of the problem domain and uses the extended finite element method (X-FEM) to solve the governing equations of electromechanics. The material response is computed from anisotropic single crystal constants and the volume fractions of the various polarization variants (i.e., three variants for rhombohedral anti-ferroelectric and eight for rhomobohedral ferroelectric ceramic). Evolution of the variant volume fractions is governed by the minimization of internally stored energy and accounts for ferroelectric and ferroelastic domain switching and phase transitions in response to the applied loads. The developed model is used to examine hydrostatic depoling in PZT 95/5-2Nb.

Paper Details

Date Published: 6 April 2007
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 6526, Behavior and Mechanics of Multifunctional and Composite Materials 2007, 652607 (6 April 2007); doi: 10.1117/12.715159
Show Author Affiliations
Joshua Robbins, Sandia National Labs. (United States)
Tariq A. Khraishi, Univ. of New Mexico (United States)
Pavel M. Chaplya, Sandia National Labs. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6526:
Behavior and Mechanics of Multifunctional and Composite Materials 2007
Marcelo J. Dapino, Editor(s)

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