Development of novel piezoelectric ceramics and composites for transducer applications

Ahmad Safari, Stephen C. Danforth

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


Over the last decade, several methods were utilized to develop novel piezoelectric ceramic / polymer composites for transducer applications. Solid freeform fabrication (SFF) is one of the methods that have been emphasized recently. SFF techniques have been used to fabricate polymer, metal or ceramic structures on a fixtureless platform, directly from a computer aided design (CAD) file. During design verification or the product development stage, SFF techniques offer great flexibility to manufacture prototypes with various shapes, sizes and functionality. Several SFF techniques, Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM™), Fused Deposition of Ceramics (FDC), and Sanders Prototyping (SP) were used to fabricate a variety of novel piezoelectric ceramic and ceramic/polymer composite transducers at Rutgers University. The composites were processed either by a direct, indirect or soft tooling route. A variety of novel composite structures, including annular ring, hexagonal pattern with octagonal rods, and oriented fibers, have been made using the flexibility provided by the above processes. Volume fraction gradients have been incorporated into some of these designs with the ceramic volume fraction decreasing from the center towards the edges, following either a linear, exponential or gaussian distribution. Novel radial composites have also been made with 1-3, 2-2 and 3-3 connectivity in the radial direction. Some other techniques for making PZT composites being pursued in our labs, including fabrication of fine scale, large area, flexible PZT composites using thin PZT fibers, and the preparation of a new PNN-PZ-PT composition for ultrasonic transducer applications. The design, fabrication and electromechanical properties of these structures are also discussed in this paper.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)184-195
Number of pages12
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - 1998
EventMedical Imaging 1998: Ultrasonic Transducer Engineering - San Diego, CA, United States
Duration: Feb 25 1998Feb 26 1998

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


  • Composites
  • Lost mold
  • Piezoelectric
  • Solid freeform fabrication
  • Transducers


Dive into the research topics of 'Development of novel piezoelectric ceramics and composites for transducer applications'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this