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Microstructural Evolution of Crystalline-Oriented (K0.5Na0.5)NbO3 Piezoelectric Ceramics with a Sintering Aid of CuO

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The microstructural development of crystalline-oriented (K0.5Na0.5)NbO3 (KNN)-based piezoelectric ceramics during sintering was investigated. The addition of CuO as a sintering aid was found to be effective for fabricating highly oriented and dense KNN ceramics. KNN specimens containing 0.5–1.0 mol% CuO sintered at 1100°C for 1 h were found to have relative densities and pseudo-cubic {100} orientation degrees of 95% or higher. In the early stages of sintering, KNN is formed in the reaction between complementary reactants NaNbO3 and KNbO3, after which oriented grain growth proceeds at a relative density of more than 90%. In addition, the results of transmission electron microscopy observation showed that textured KNN ceramics have a unique pectinate-like domain structure with domain walls consisting of {101} planes.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Toyota Central R&D Labs Inc., Nagakute 480-1192, Japan

Publication date: June 1, 2006

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