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The P-878 Dura Act Power piezo patch transducer from PI Ceramic uses an operating voltage of only -20V to +120V. As with all previous Dura Act transducers, the P-878 can be used as piezo actuator, sensor or energy harvester.

The active layer of the patch transducer consists of a multilayer piezo element that is embedded in a fibre-reinforced plastic with a patented method. For displacement, the Dura Act Power uses the d33 effect.

The composites are manufactured using a bubble-free injection method. Their polymer coating simultaneously serves as electrical insulation and as mechanical preload, which makes the P-878 bendable.

Previous all-ceramic transducers require high driving voltages of 250–1,000V. They use lateral contraction of the piezo element when applying the electrical voltage — the so-called transversal or d31 effect.

In contrast, Dura Act Power multilayer patch transducers use the longitudinal or d33 effect, which describes an elongation parallel to the electric field E and the polarisation direction of the piezo actuator. The d33 piezoelectric deformation coefficients for the longitudinal effect are higher than the d31 coefficients for the transversal effect;consequently, the attainable displacement is higher too.

Key features and specifications

  • Operating voltage is -20V to +120V
  • The device can be used as piezo actuator, sensor or energy harvester
  • It is manufactured using a bubble-free injection method
  • It uses the longitudinal or d33 effect

Physik Instrumente

PI is a global manufacturer of high precision positioning systems and products based on piezo technology. Used in markets as diverse as biotechnology, semiconductor, defence and astronomy, PI’s products work to improve the speed and precision of many cutting edge processes. Actuators, sensors and positioning systems with either sub-micron or nanometre level precision; many customised for the end user, are included in the product range.

With manufacturing and subsidiary offices around the world and a workforce of more than 500 PI provides direct local support where it is needed. Products range from component level piezo ceramic assemblies to six axis hexapod positioning robots. PI manufactures its own piezo ceramic material including multilayer devices that incorporate its patented ceramic insulation technology. Lead free ceramic technology is now also included in the company’s product range. With the flexibility and continuity of supply offered by having control of piezo ceramic production comes security and speed of delivery for customers who rely on or are looking to move into this area of technology. PI’s piezo ultrasonic and step drive motor technologies offer unique performance including self-locking capability, high force or high speed and non-magnetic and vacuum compatibility.

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