Morgan Technical Ceramics has launched a new range of piezoceramic composite materials which dramatically improve the performance of ultrasound and sonar transducers used in medical, biometric, military and industrial applications. As a result of using the transducers, image resolutions are higher and significant advances can be made to 4-D ultrasound.
The company also designs and manufactures complete transducers, working closely with electrical engineers and original equipment manufacturers to design high performance systems.
The new piezoceramic is used to make 1-3 transducer and 2-2 transducer plates which give high performance in frequencies ranging from 200KHz to 4MHz. Finely pitched composite configurations act with lower acoustic impedance than traditional monolithic components, providing better imaging resolution.
The piezoceramic material is arranged in pillars with a polymer matrix filler. By combining the materials in this way, the overall density of the composite structure better matches the medium of the material the sounds waves travels through. The lower acoustic impedance allows a higher energy transfer through body tissue or water, resulting in a lower reverberation level on the front face of the acoustic device.
Piezocomposite materials benefit from a damping effect of the polymer which reduces lateral vibration modes, cross coupling and spurious activity, resulting in improved transducer bandwidth. The piezoceramic composite eliminates interference that a conventional monolithic transducer would exhibit, thus improving transmission efficiency and reception sensitivity.
"With industry demanding increased imaging resolution, we work closely with customers to develop cost-effective components that meets their needs," says Ewan Campbell, transducer design engineer, Morgan Technical Ceramics. "Our design engineers can adjust the architecture, manufacturing process, material properties and proportional content of ceramic versus polymer to optimise performance for each application."
Morgan Technical Ceramics offers piezoceramic custom composites in 1-3 and 2-2 architectures, in sizes up to 40mm square and in many shapes, including cylindrical, spherical and curved.
In addition, the company offers complete transducers based on piezoceramic composite technology. Morgan Technical Ceramics has in-house underwater acoustic test tanks and pressure testing facilities which are used to validate the performance of different designs. This integration of all process steps enables the company's specialists to develop custom solutions with short lead times.
Transducers can be designed with appropriate matching layers, encapsulation and cables, suitable for the harsh conditions found in marine environments, and manufactured in volume for many medical and industrial applications.