Piezoelectric materials for electro-mechanic applications

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The Research unit holds a remarkable experience in the development of materials and components both for fundamental as well as applied research. Materials are produced in the systems

  • PZT - Lead Zirconate-Titanate solid solution) with several dopants.
  • PLZT - Lead Lanthanum Zirconate-Titanate solid solution,
  • BNT - Bismuth Sodium Titanate,
  • BNBT - solid solution of BNT with barium titanate
  • BST - Barium Strontium Titanate
  • multiferroic composites (ferroelectric and magnetic)

from the powder synthesis the ceramic process, for the production of components too, and the functional characterization. Components can be fabricated for specific applications such as piezoelectric bulk actuators, simple multilayer actuators, transformer, miniaturized sensors. The powders are synthesized by solid state reaction or by chemical methods, mainly gel combustion. Piezoelectric materials with controlled, graded porosity and low acoustic impedance were developed for devices for underwater acoustics. The gel combustion technique was applied to the synthesis of PZT and BNBT nanosized powders. The materials are currently shaped by die or isostatic pressing, colloidal processing of the suspensions of the powders, tape casting or starch consolidation and extrusion, screen printing and electrophoretic deposition. Recently R&D on the development of multiferroic composites was started.




F. CORDERO, F. CRACIUN, F. TREQUATTRINI, E. MERCADELLI and C. GALASSI Phase transitions and phase diagram of the ferroelectric perovskite (Na0.5Bi0.5)1−x BaxTiO3 by anelastic and dielectric measurements Physical Review B vol 81 [14] 144124 (2010)

C. E. CIOMAGA, I. DUMITRU, L. MITOSERIU, C. GALASSI, A. R. IORDAN, M. AIRIMIOAEI, and M. N. PALAMARU Magnetoelectric ceramic composites with double-resonant permittivity and permeability in GHz range: a route towards isotropic metamaterials Scripta Materialia 62 610–612 (2010)

E. MERCADELLI, A. SANSON , P. PINASCO, E. RONCARI , C. GALASSI Tape cast porosity-graded piezoelectric ceramics J Eur. Ceram. Soc. 30 1461–1467 (2010)

F. Cordero, F. Craciun, and C. Galassi Low-temperature phase transformations of PbZr1−x TixO3 in the morphotropic phase-boundary region Physical Review Letters PRL 98, 255701 (2007),

C. Galassi Processing of porous ceramics: Piezoelectric materials Journal of the European Ceramic Society 26 2951–2958, (2006)


Processing technologies

  • Powder synthesis by solid state reaction or chemical methods, mainly gel combustion
  • Shaping techniques like die and isostatic pressing, slip casting, tape casting, extrusion, screen printing, electrophoretic deposition
  • Conventional sintering
  • Cutting and finishing
  • Electroding
  • Poling

Functional characterization

  • Elasto-piezo- dielectric characterization
  • Ferroelectric hysteresis, Curie temperature, FORC (First Order Reversal Curves) analysis


Associated partner of the Piezo Institute, Partner of the COST Action MP0904 SIMUFER;

Strong collaboration with CNR-ISC (Rome), with the Facoltà di Chimica Industriale, Bologna, with University "Al. I. Cuza" Facolty of Phyisics, Romania, National Institute of Materials Physics, Bucharest, Romania, Faculty of Applied Chemistry and Materials Science, Polytechnics University of Bucharest. In 2010 the collaboration with the Department of Mathematics of the Case Western Riserve University Cleveland.

ISTEC is affiliated to the PIEZOINSTITUTE.

As a fall out of the tutoring of students and young researchers a spin-off action was carried on and a new Company, IPECC (http://www.ipecc.it) was generated on 2005 that develops the complementary activity to support the companies to apply the piezoelectric technology to their processes.