This paper presents a fibered-epitaxial lead zirconate titanate (PZT) thin film with intermediate features between the monocrystalline and polycrystalline thin films for piezoelectric micromachined ultrasound transducer (pMUT). The grain boundaries confirmed by scanning electron microscopy, but it still maintained the in-plane epitaxial relationship found by X-ray diffraction analyses. The dielectric constant (εr33 = 500) was relatively high compared to those of the monocrystalline thin films, but was lower than those of conventional polycrystalline thin films near the morphotropic phase boundary composition. The fundamental characterizations were evaluated through the operation tests of the prototyped pMUT with the fibered-epitaxial thin film. As a result, its piezoelectric coefficient without poling treatment was estimated to be e31,f = -10--11 C/m2, and thus reasonably high compared to polycrystalline thin films. An appropriate poling treatment increased e31,f and decreased εr33. In addition, this unique film was demonstrated to be mechanically tougher than the monocrystalline thin film. It has the potential ability to become a well-balanced piezoelectric film with both high signal-to-noise ratio and mechanical toughness for pMUT.
- Epitaxial thin film
- Micromachined ultrasound transducer (pMUT)
- Piezoelectric materials