Electromechanical Behavior of Relaxor Ferroelectric Crystals
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Relaxor ferroelectric PZN-xPT and PMN-xPT single crystals exhibit extraordinary electromechanical properties. They are under development for applications in sensors, actuators and transducers. The polarization switching and phase transition behavior of PZN-4.5%PT and PMN-32%PT single crystals under external loading has been investigated. Experimental investigation elucidates the polarization switching and phase transition behavior of relaxor ferroelectric crystals at different orientation cuts under combined temperature, electric field and stress loading. These crystals exhibit strong orientation dependence of electromechanical properties, and the applied fields all affect the poling and phase states of the crystals. Based on experimental investigation, crystal variant modeling was developed to compute the piezoelectric properties of multi-domain crystals at different orientation cuts from a set of properties for the single domain. Thermodynamics and work-energy analysis of field induced phase transitions in these single crystals sheds light on the phase transition mechanism of ferroelectric crystals. Fracture behavior of relaxor single crystals under non-uniform electric fields at a partial electrode edge has also been measured and analyzed.