Modelling Piezoelectric Devices

Webinar presented by Paul Wilson, Knowledge Transfer Associate, Queen’s University Belfast and Richard Chippendale, Technical Manager, COMSOL

This webinar is sponsored by: COMSOL

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27th June 2018 2pm BST


In this webinar, learn about a multiphysics approach for modelling piezoelectric devices with couplings between electrostatics, acoustics and structural mechanics. Incorporating such models within the design process enables a better understanding of the interactions between structural materials, piezoelectric ceramics and fluid damping, which can reduce development time and prototyping costs.

Piezoelectric transducers can be used, for example, in ultrasonic cleaning, sonochemistry and cell disruption or homogenisation. For such applications it is important to accurately design the ultrasonic horns (or sonotrodes) to increase the amplitude of piezoelectric vibrations and transfer energy to liquids through the production and disintegration of microscopic bubbles.

In this presentation, Paul Wilson from Queen’s University Belfast will discuss how to design such a horn to maximise power transfer to a liquid. An existing transducer will be modelled and the tuning of material parameters to match experimental results will be discussed. Parametric sweeps are then used to investigate the design space of the horn and predict the electrical and mechanical properties of the model. These results can then inform experimental procedure, where the simulated response shows strong agreement with laboratory measurements.

The webinar will include a live demonstration in the COMSOL Multiphysics® software and conclude with a Q&A session.


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Paul Wilson, Queen’s University Belfast

Paul Wilson is a knowledge transfer associate at Queen’s University Belfast, where he is investigating novel methods for liquid contaminant monitoring in partnership with Camlin Technologies Ltd.  Paul graduated with a BA in physics from the University of Oxford in 1999, before obtaining an MSc in artificial intelligence at the University of Edinburgh the following year. In 2004 he received a PhD in electrical and electronic engineering at Queen’s University Belfast, for work on clinical data analysis carried out in conjunction with Randox Laboratories Ltd. For the next 12 years Paul taught physics in a leading Northern Ireland grammar school before returning to full-time research in September 2017.




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Richard Chippendale, COMSOL

Richard Chippendale is a technical manager at COMSOL, specialising in electromagnetic simulations. He graduated from the University of Southampton in 2009 with a master’s degree in physics (Mphys), and continued at the same institution to complete a PhD investigating the interaction of lightning strikes with carbon-fibre composites using numerical simulations. He then spent four years as a research fellow at the University of Southampton, focusing on high-voltage cable simulations for both the onshore and offshore sector.

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