Doped ceria is known for decades as an excellent ionic conductor used ubiquitously in fuel cells and other devices. Recent discovery of a giant electrostriction effect has brought world-wide interest to this class of materials for actuation applications in micromechanical systems. From this aspect, the electromechanical response has to be studied as a function of external parameters, such as frequency, temperature, and electrode material. In this work, we fabricated circular membranes based on Gd-doped ceria (CGO) with Ti electrodes and studied their electromechanical response using a sensitive interferometric technique. The self-supported membranes are flat at room temperature and reversibly buckle upon heating, indicating that the membranes are under in-plane tensile strain. We have found that the electromechanical response is strongly frequency dependent. Significant hysteresis is observed in the displacement-vs.-voltage curves, which is deleterious for micromechanical applications but can be eliminated by tuning the phase of the excitation voltage. The electromechanical response of the system increases with temperature. Finite Element Modeling is applied to evaluate the electrostriction coefficient of the CGO material. At low frequencies, the M12 electrostriction coefficient is about 5 × 10−18 m2/V2, which is in line with the previous reports.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)