Study identifies high-performance alternative to conventional ferroelectrics

Researchers at Rice University and UC Berkeley have identified antiferroelectric lead zirconate (PbZrO3) as a high-performance alternative to conventional piezoelectric materials for electromechanical applications. These thin films exhibit up to five times greater electromechanical response than traditional materials, even when scaled down to nanometer thicknesses. The study found that clamping, usually a performance inhibitor, actually enhances the material’s functionality. This breakthrough could lead to the development of more efficient microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) and nanoelectromechanical systems (NEMS).

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