Synthesis-Structure-Property Relationships in Lead-Free Piezoelectric Materials

dc.contributor.authorMaurya, Deepamen
dc.contributor.committeechairPriya, Shashanken
dc.contributor.committeememberSuchicital, Carlos T. A.en
dc.contributor.committeememberAning, Alexander O.en
dc.contributor.committeememberHeremans, Jean J.en
dc.contributor.committeememberViehland, Dwight D.en
dc.contributor.departmentMaterials Science and Engineeringen
dc.description.abstractPiezoelectric materials find applications in multitude of devices such as sensors, actuators and energy harvesters. However, most of these piezoelectric materials utilize lead-based systems which are becoming serious problem owing to the restrictions imposed by regulatory agencies across the globe. In the functional ceramics community, currently there is no problem more important than to find a replacement for lead-based piezoelectrics used for actuators. The electromechanical properties required for actuators (high piezoelectric constant, high coupling factor, low loss, and high transition temperatures) for known lead-free compositions are, however, far inferior to those of lead-based systems. There are three lines of research for addressing this fundamental problem "C (i) search for new systems through a combination of theory-based prediction followed by experimental effort (doping, solid solutions having a morphotropic (M) or polymorphic (P) phase boundary (PB), (iii) stabilization of metastable phases or finding the high temperature triclinic systems, and (iii) improving the properties of known compositions through microstructure optimization, domain engineering and multilayering. All these approaches are challenging and require innovation to make a significant impact on the current state-of-the-art. In this thesis, the later line of research was focused which is promising for near future applications, as it builds upon the known material systems with high depoling temperatures that have demonstrated the potential to be practical. In the first chapter, a novel method for the synthesis of lead-free (1-x)(Na0.5Bi0.5)TiO₃ "C xBaTiO3 piezoelectric ceramics was investigated. Initially, multiple compositions around morphotrpic phase boundary (MPB) were synthesized to identify the optimum composition 0.93Na0.5Bi0.5TiO3-0.07BaTiO3 (NBT-BT) for electromechanical effect. The new synthesis method starts with the synthesis of Na2Ti6O13 (NTO) whiskers which are then transformed into lead-free NBT-BT ceramics. Synthesis of NTO whiskers was performed using molten salt synthesis (MSS) method. Tape casting method was used to align the whiskers in base matrix powder and subjected to various processing temperatures to elucidate the microstructure and texture evolution. For this, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), high resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM), atomic force microscopy (AFM) and energy dispersive spectroscopy (EDS) analysis were used as principal tools. The sintering process can be understood by dividing it into three stages, namely (i) transformation of monoclinic whiskers in to NBT-BT perovskite phase through topochemical reaction (<800°C), (ii) localized sintering confined on single whisker (800-1050°C), and (iii) liquid phase sintering as densification and grain growth occurs in the whole matrix (>1050°C). The concentric growth ledges observed on grain surfaces were found to be preferably confined on the corners of cubical grains indicating <111> growth direction. The Lotgering factor (f100) for the sintered matrix was found to decrease with increase in sintering temperature. The longitudinal piezoelectric constant (d33) of samples sintered for 20h at 1175°C, 1200°C and 1225°C was measured to be ~153 pC/N, ~216 pC/N and ~180 pC/N, respectively. Next, a novel method was developed for the synthesis of nanostructured lead-free ferroelectric NBT-BT whiskers with high aspect ratio using NTO as a host structure. High energy x-ray diffraction coupled with atomic pair distribution function (PDF) and Raman scattering analyses were used to confirm the average structure of lead-free NBT-BT whiskers as rhombohedral, i.e. a ferroelectricity enabling type. The HRTEM analysis revealed local monoclinic-type structural distortions indicating a modulated structure at the nanoscale in the MPB composition of lead-free NBT-BT whiskers. The structural rearrangement during the synthesis of lead-free NBT-BT whiskers was found to occur via translation of edge shared octahedra of NTO into a corner sharing coordination. The high temperature morphological changes depicting disintegration of isolated whiskers into individual grains due to higher grain boundary energy have been found to occur in a close analogy with Rayleigh-type instability. In lead-based ABO3 compounds, with B-site disorder, the origin of enhancement of piezoelectric properties near MPB has been associated with the presence of an intermediate monoclinic/orthorhombic state that bridges the adjacent ferroelectric rhombohedral and tetragonal phases. However, the origin of high piezoelectric response in lead-free ABO3 compounds with A-site disorder has not been conclusively established. In this thesis, a microscopic model derived from comparative analyses of HR-TEM and neutron diffraction was developed that explains the origin of high piezoelectric response in lead "C free MPB compositions of NBT-BT. Direct observation of nanotwins with monoclinic symmetry confirmed the presence of an intermediate bridging phase that facilitates a pathway for polarization reorientation. Monoclinic distortions of an average rhombohedral phase were attributed to localized displacements of atoms along the non-polar directions. These results provide new insight towards design of high performance lead "C free piezoelectric materials. Microstructure and domain structure play dominant role towards controlling the magnitude of piezoelectric coefficient and hysteretic losses in perovskites. Brick-wall like microstructure with large grain size and small domain size can provide significant enhancement in the magnitude of piezoelectric coefficient. A synthesis technique for lead-free piezoelectric NBT-BT system that can provide [001]pc/[012]Rh grain oriented ceramics with large grain size and an electrical poling technique that results in smaller domain size will have significant impact on the electromechanical response. In this research, a synthesis technique was developed and the processing variables that play deterministic role in achieving the large grain brick-wall like microstructure were explained. Interfaces in the microstructure were found to be coherent at the atomic scale facilitating the domain wall motion with applied electric field. The piezoelectric response was found to increase monotonously with the incease in the degree of texturing and optimized microstructure was found to provide 200% enhancement in the magnitude of piezoelectric coefficient as compared to its random form. In order to understand the mechanism of enhanced piezoelectric response in textured NBT-BT, in-situ neutron diffraction experiments revealed that characteristically different structural responses are induced in textured and randomly-oriented NBT-BT ceramics upon application of electric fields (E), which are likely related to the varying coherence lengths of polar nano regions and internal stresses induced by domain switching. In conjunction to focus on NBT-BT, new lead-free piezoelectric materials with enhanced piezoelectric response were synthesized. This study provides fundamental understanding of the enhanced piezoelectric instability in lead-free piezoelectric (1-x) BaTiO₃-xA(Cu1/3Nb2/3)O3₃ (A: Sr, Ba and Ca and x = 0.0-0.03) solid solutions. These compositions were found to exhibit large d33 of ~330 pC/N and electromechanical planar coupling constant (kp)~ 46% at room temperature. The piezoelectric instability in these compositions was found to increase with x despite monotonous decrease in the long range polar ordering. High energy X-ray diffraction coupled with PDFs indicated increase in local polarization. Raman scattering analysis revealed that substitutions on A and B-site both substantially perturbed the local octahedral dynamics and resulted in localized nano polar regions with lower symmetry. These localized polar distortions were found to persist much above the Curie temperature (Tc). Polarization "C electric field (P-E) hysteresis loop analysis indicated presence of the internal bias that was found to be correlated with the formation of polar defects. This defect structure was found to modulate the domain structure resulting in nano domains and broad domain walls with higher mobility as revealed through analysis from HR-TEM and piezoresponse force microscopy (PFM). The presence of nano domains and local structural distortions smears the Curie peak resulting in diffuse order-disorder type phase transitions. The electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) investigations revealed that substitution of Cu²⁺ takes place on octahedral sites that are distorted due to Jahn-Teller effect. The A-sites were distorted by substitution of Sr and Ca on Ba-site possessing different ionic radii and electronegativity. The effect of these distortions on the variations in physical property was modeled and analyzed within the context of nanodomains and phase transitions. As an application, the solid solution with nominal composition of (1-x)BaTiO₃-xBa(Cu1/3Nb2/3)O₃ (BCN) (x = 0, 0.025) was synthesized by conventional mixed oxide route, followed by compositional modification with varying concentration of Sn, as given by the formulation: 0.975 BaTi1-ySnyO₃ "C 0.025 Ba(Cu1/3Nb2/3)O₃ (y = 0.05, 0.06, 0.075, 0.1). Room temperature XRD patterns showed decrease in tetragonality of BT after modifying with BCN (BT-BCN). Modifications with Sn lead to further decrement in tetragonality and the room temperature structure became cubic at 6.0 at% doping level. The decrement in tetragonality was accompanied by lowering of Tc.  BT-BCN doped with 6 and 7.5 at% Sn were found to exhibit diffuse phase transition accompanied by high dielectric constant "Ý 7000, low loss tangent "Ü 1% and grain size in the submicron regime ("Ü 1 "Ìm). These compositions were found to be promising for Y5V type multilayer ceramic capacitors (MLCCs). Lastly, the dielectric and ferroelectric responses of compositionally graded bilayer and trilayer composites consisting of BT and 0.975BaTiO₃-0.025Ba(Cu1/3Nb2/3)O₃ (BT-BCN) were investigated. Two types of graded bilayer samples were synthesized, one with same thickness of BT and BT-BCN while other with different layer thicknesses. The graded trilayer sample consisted of BT layer sandwiched between two BT-BCN layers of equal thickness. SEM and TEM images showed a sharp interface with needle-shape domains across the interface. The domain size on BT-side was found to be larger than that on BT-BCN-side. The temperature dependence of dielectric response for all composite systems was found to exhibit shifting of characteristic Curie peak compared to constituent material which was associated to coupling between layers. Moreover, the differences in grain size, tetragonality, domain mobility of each layer was found to perturb the electrical response of composite. The polarization mismatch between uncoupled BT and BT-BCN established internal electric field in composite specimen and defined new polarization states in each layer by perturbing free energy functional of the composite specimen. Dynamic hysteresis behaviors and power-law scaling relations of all specimens were determined from P"CE field hysteresis loop measurements as a function of frequency. All systems were found to exhibit similar dynamic scaling relationships. Hysteresis area, Pr and EC decreased with increasing frequency due to delayed response, but increased with increasing applied electric field due to enhancement of driving force. Trilayer system was found to exhibit strong internal-bias field and double hysteresis behavior. The coupling effect resulting due to polarization mismatch between layers had substantial influence on the dynamic hysteresis behavior and power-law scaling relations.en
dc.description.degreePh. D.en
dc.publisherVirginia Techen
dc.rightsIn Copyrighten
dc.subjecttransmission electron microscopyen
dc.subjectneutron diffractionen
dc.subjectX-ray diffractionen
dc.titleSynthesis-Structure-Property Relationships in Lead-Free Piezoelectric Materialsen
dc.typeDissertationen Science and Engineeringen Polytechnic Institute and State Universityen D.en


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