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DFG CRC/Transregio 39 PT-PIESA
SP A03

Thin layer technology for methal based piezoelectric modules

S. Peter, V. Wittstock
  1. Aims
  2. Results
  3. Methods
  4. Publications
  5. Contact


High-volume compatible production technologies for manufacturing microstructured piezoceramic fiber-sensor-actuator-modules

  • Module variants for specific structural functions (sensor, actuator, generator)
  • Simplification and reduction of the process sequence

  • Minimizing of requirements of the dimensional, position and form tolerances

  • Increasing of process reliability and reproducibility of fabrication

  • Improve the reliability after integration into the sheet metal part


Magnetron sputtering of electrode layers

  • On piezoceramic fiber composites (“PFC”, TP A1), polished lead zirconate titanate (“PZT”) and ceramic collecting electrodes
  • Copper alloy CuCr1Zr (2.1293) among other with regard to conductivity, solderability, availability, modulus of elasticity and costs to be suitable

SEM-images of surfaces of piezoelectric fiber-composites (left) and polished PZT (right) with sputtered CuCr1Zr electrodes

  • Specific resistance of CuCr1Zr on rougher PFC significantly higher than on polished PZT ↔ production technology

  • Still insufficient adhesive strength of layers on PZT and alumina ceramic (collecting electrodes) during laser beam welding and areal soldering with Nanofoil® of nanoscale Al- and Ni-layers (TP A2)
Electrical resistivity of magnetron sputtered electrode layers out of CuCr1Zr depending on their thickness by deposition on PFK, PZT and glass

Micromechanical investigations of piezoelectric-elements

  • Micromechanical bending test with Nanoindenter during high-accuracy measurement of bending beams
  • Objective: quantitatively assess electromechanical parameters individual piezoceramic fibers or rather whole PSV after successive production steps or loads

Increasing the modulus of elasticity of piezoelectric fibers (5 x 0,23 x 12 mm3) by polarity followed by applying an electrical voltage

Plasma CVD of insulating layers

a03 a03
  • hard a-C:H layers (at three pressures in medium-frequency discharge out C2H2 precipitated) retain their mechanical relevant parameters up to 500°C and above
a03 a03
  • Upon conversion of sp3 bound carbon matrix in sp2 bound cluster is primarily (particularly) H2 be released and the thickness grows up until 14 %

Construction of adhesive strength measuring system (pull-test)


Sputtered CuCr1Zr layers on PZT substrates of different pretreatment:

  • Pull-off forces are larger for untreated and lapped (from TP A2) PZT- substrate: Influence of the surface topography
  • Chemical-mechanical polishing (CMP) of PZT (from TP A2): Median of adhesive strength is comparable to untreated PZT; low spread of individual values


Process chain modeling

  • Statistical tolerance model
  • Parameter identification by investigations in A02, A03, A04, A06






Geometric model parameters with the PSV integration

Deposition of thin layers

  • Electrode layers: Vacuum arc evaporation
  • Insulator layers: Gradient layers (a-SiCN:H, a-C:H)


Cross section of a-SiN: H insulation layer

Micromachining and micro assembly

  • Machining: Lapping, precision grinding, CMP, Cut-off grinding
  • Assembly: Gluing, stacking with spacers, laser soldering (A04)

Cut-off grinding of stacked piezo plates into PSV

Characterization of Properties

  • Layers: Pull- test, EDX, FTIR, ERDA

  • PSV: Profilometry, light microscopy, AFM, REM, micro testing instrument


CuCr1Zr electrode of polished PZT-ceramic

In-Process measurement

  • Electromechanics: Impedance spectroscopy, frequency response
  • Geometry: Image processing, confocal chromatic scanning
Frequency response changed by prestress


Reviewed Publications

[Pet17] Peter S, Speck F, Lindner M, Seyller T (2017) Analysis of a-SiCN:H films by X-Ray photoelectron spectroscopy. Vacuum 138 (2017) S. 191-198, DOI 10.1016/j.vacuum.2016.09.016
[Pet14] Peter S, Günther M, Gordan O, Berg S, Zahn D R T, Seyller Th (2014) Experimental analysis of the thermal annealing of hard a-C:H films Diamond and Related Materials 45 (2014), 43-57.
DOI: 10.1016/j.diamond.2014.03.005
[Pet13a] Peter S, Bernütz S, Berg S, Richter F (2013) FTIR analysis of a-SiCN:H films deposited by PECVD Vacuum 98 (2013) 81-87. DOI: 10.1016/j.vacuum.2013.04.014
[Pet13b] Peter S, Bernütz S, Berg S, Richter F (2013) FTIR analysis of a-SiCN:H films deposited by PECVD. Vacuum 98:81-87
[Pet13c] Peter S, Günther M, Berg S, Clausner A, Richter F (2013) Mid-frequency PECVD of a SiCN:H films and their structural mechanical and electrical properties. Vacuum 90:155-159
[Sch13d] Schubert A, Wittstock V, Koriath H-J, Jahn SF, Peter S, Müller B, Müller M (2013) Smart metal sheets by direct functional integration of piezoceramic fibers. Microsys Technol
[Pet12a] Peter S, Günther M, Richter F (2012) A comparative analysis of a-C:H films deposited from five hydrocarbons by thermal desorption spectroscopy. Vacuum 86:667-671
[Neu10] Neugebauer R, Pagel K, Bucht A, Wittstock V, Pappe A (2010) Control concept for piezo-based actuator-sensor-units for uniaxial vibration damping in machine tools. Prod Eng 4(4):413-419
[Pet10a] Peter S, Günther M, Hauschild D, Richter F (2010) Low temperature PECVD of thin films combining mechanical stiffness, electrical insulation and homogeneity in microcavities. J Appl Phys 108(4):043303.
[Pet10b] Peter S, Günther M, Hauschild D, Grambole D, Richter F (2010) Mid-frequency deposition of a- C:H films using five different precursors. Vacuum 84:958–961
[Dro08] Drossel W-G, Wittstock V, Neugebauer R (2008) Adaptive spindle support for improving machining operations. CIRP Annals Manuf Technol 57(1):395-398
[Pet07] Peter S, Graupner K, Grambole D, Richter F (2007) Comparative experimental analysis of the a- C:H deposition processes using CH4 and C2H2 as precursors. J Appl Physl 102(5):053304 Peter, Wittstock Teilprojekt A03

Other publications

[Pet17] Peter S, Vasin Y, Speck F, Mammadov S, Seyller T (2017) "ECR Plasma deposited a-SiCN:H as insulating layer in piezoceramic modules" European Congress and Exhibition on Advanced Materials and Processes Euromat 2017, Oral Presentation C1-O-WEDPM1, Thessaloniki, Greece, 17-22 September, 2017
[Mue13b] Flössel M, Gebhardt S, Schönecker A, Michaelis A (2010) Novel Packaged LTCC/PZT Modules for Actuator and Sensor Applications. In: Proc ACTUATOR 10. Bremen, Germany, pp 586-589
[Flö12] Müller M, Read S, Matope S, Van der Merwe A, Wittstock V, Neugebauer R (2013) Handling robots for high-volume microassembly - an economic and technological comparison of different kinematic principles. Proc Int Conf Compet Manuf. pp 257-262
[Pet12b] Peter S, Günther M, Gordan O, Berg S, Zahn DRT, Richter, F (2012) Experimental analysis of the thermal annealing of hard a-C:H fims. In: Int Conf Diam and Carbon Mater, Vortrag O100, Granada, Spain, 2012-09-05


Project Manager:

Dr. rer. nat. Siegfried Peter
Technische Universität Chemnitz
Fakultät für Naturwissenschaften
Institut für Physik
Professur Technische Physik
09107 Chemnitz

Phone: +49 371 531-38258


Dr.-Ing. Volker Wittstock
Technische Universität Chemnitz
Fakultät für Maschinenbau
Institut für Werkzeugmaschinen und Produktionsprozesse
Professur für Werkzeugmaschinen und Umformtechnik
09107 Chemnitz

Phone: +49 371 531-37822


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