MULTICERALis a joint effort of eight European research institutions/universities from six countries (UK, Germany, France, Portugal, Slovenia, Lithuania) aimed at the development, detailed characterization, and evaluation of novel multifunctional thin-film materials based on ferroelectrics [Pb(Zr,Ti)O3, BaTiO3, SrBi2Ta2O9], magnetics and shape memory alloys (SMA) (Ni2MnGa, BiFeO3), and relaxors [PbMg1/3Nb2/3O3, Ba(Ti,Zr)O3] assembled in complex geometries. These include planar films and multi-layers, hybrid sol-gel composites, and vertically assembled tube and nanowire arrays. We expect that such geometries will greatly enhance the cross coupling between magnetic, electric, and elastic T-dependent properties and give rise to unrivaled multi-functionalities unavailable so far. For example, the microactuator based on ferromagnetic shape memory alloy/piezoelectric bilayer will respond to electric/magnetic/stress fields while exhibiting two-way shape memory effect. Another example is magnetically tuned capacitor wit h giant magneto-dielectric coupling based on magnetic/piezoelectric multi-layers. At least two prototype devices based on the high cross-coupling effects will be fabricated/tested in this project proving the proposed concepts.
The variety of the available de position techniques combined with using advanced characterization tools will ensure that the desired thin film geometries will be assembled with minimum cross-contamination, non-stoichiometry and defect formation. These efforts will be supported by the extensive modelling activities aimed at the elucidation of the nature of magneto-electroelastic coupling in thin films, calculation of the effect of curved geometries on cross-coupling effects, and influence of disorder and long-range interactions on the properties of multi-layers and magnetic/ferroelectric domain patterns. Finite element calculations will be performed once the physical mechanism of the relevant coupling effect is clarified.
- FP6-NMP - Nanotechnologies and nanosciences, knowledge-based multifunctional materials and new production processes and devices: thematic priority 3 under the 'Focusing and integrating community research' of the 'Integrating and strengthening the European Research Area' specific programme 2002-2006.
Call for proposal
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