Numerical Modeling of Piezoelectric Transducers Using Physical Parameters

H. Cappon, K.J. Keesman

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    10 Citations (Scopus)


    Design of ultrasonic equipment is frequently facilitated with numerical models. These numerical models, however, need a calibration step, because usually not all characteristics of the materials used are known. Characterization of material properties combined with numerical simulations and experimental data can be used to acquire valid estimates of the material parameters. In our design application, a finite element (FE) model of an ultrasonic particle separator, driven by an ultrasonic transducer in thickness mode, is required. A limited set of material parameters for the piezoelectric transducer were obtained from the manufacturer, thus preserving prior physical knowledge to a large extent. The remaining unknown parameters were estimated from impedance analysis with a simple experimental setup combined with a numerical optimization routine using 2-D and 3-D FE models. Thus, a full set of physically interpretable material parameters was obtained for our specific purpose. The approach provides adequate accuracy of the estimates of the material parameters, near 1%. These parameter estimates will subsequently be applied in future design simulations, without the need to go through an entire series of characterization experiments. Finally, a sensitivity study showed that small variations of 1% in the main parameters caused changes near 1% in the eigenfrequency, but changes up to 7% in the admittance peak, thus influencing the efficiency of the system. Temperature will already cause these small variations in response; thus, a frequency control unit is required when actually manufacturing an efficient ultrasonic separation system.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1023-1032
    JournalIEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - 2012


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