Piezoceramics for high-prequency (20 to 100 MHz) single-element imaging transducers

Michael J. Zipparo, K. Kirk Shung, Thomas R. Shrout

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

89 Scopus citations


The performance of transducers operating at high frequencies is greatly influenced by the properties of the piezoelectric materials used in their fabrication. Selection of an appropriate material for a transducer is based on many factors, including material properties, transducer area, and operating frequency. The properties of a number of piezoceramic materials have been experimentally determined by measuring the electrical impedance of air-loaded resonators whose thickness corresponds to resonance frequencies from 10 to 100 MHz. Materials measured include commercially available compositions of lead zirconate titanate (PZT) with relatively high dielectric constants and a modified lead titanate (PT) composition with a much lower dielectric constant. In addition, materials which have been designed or modified to result in improved properties at high frequencies are studied. Conclusions concerning the influence of the microstructure and composition on the frequency dependence of the material properties are made from the calculated properties and microstructural analysis of each material. Issues which affect transducer performance are discussed in relation to the properties. For transducers larger than about 1 mm in diameter, the use of a lower dielectric constant material is shown to result in a better electrical match between the transducer and a standard 50 Ω termination. For transducers whose impedance is close to that of the connecting cables and electrical termination, equivalent circuit model simulations show improved performance without the need for electrical matching networks. Measurements of fabricated transducers show close agreement with the simulations, validating the measurements and showing the performance benefits of electrically matched transducers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1038-1048
Number of pages11
JournalIEEE transactions on ultrasonics, ferroelectrics, and frequency control
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1997

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Instrumentation
  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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