Polyuréthanes électrostrictifs et nanocomposites : caractérisation et analyse des mécanismes de couplages électromécaniques

Abstract : Piezoelectric ceramics are commonly used for actuation applications. However, they suffer from several drawbacks particularly such low electric field-induced strains and difficult implementation inside microelectromechanical systems (MEMS). Recently, electroactive polymers (EAPs) have attracted considerable interest, especially following the publication of elevated electric field-induced strain values. The results have rendered EAPs very attractive for replacing the lead-based ceramics. Three mechanisms are responsible for the electromechanical coupling in electronic EAPs: (i) The piezoelectricity that appears in some crystalline phases, (ii) The "Maxwell" forces when applying an electric field through a capacitor which consists of a flexible polymer film placed between two electrodes, and (iii) The electrostriction, an intrinsic phenomenon related to polar materials, which is still poorly understood. The last two mechanisms result in a quadratic dependence of the deformation with the applied electric field. Among the electrostrictive EAPs, some polyurethanes (PU) have been often cited, and have therefore guided the choice of the materials for this work. The first part was to analyze the electrostrictive behavior of three PUs, made of two partially miscible types of repeating units: the high polar hard segments and the low polar soft segments. The phase separation occurred during the elaboration process of these PU films seems favorable to the emergence of electrostrictive behavior. A model predicted recently an almost 1000 factor between the electrostriction and the Maxwell stress (here negligible). This is clearly related to the competition between the electrostatic strains (polar phases dipoles in a field gradient) and the mechanical stresses. The thickness of films was found to have a strong influence on electromechanical activity: thin films present a lower strain for a given electric field compared to thick films. Depending on the solvent evaporation during the film elaboration, the films exhibit a thickness gradient in the microstructure: Fast evaporation on the surface inhibits the phase separation, whereas it is more favored in the core. This is consistent with the modeling based on the gradient of dielectric constant in PU. In the last part, we aimed to further increase the electrostriction of PU by filling with nanoscale conductive particles (carbon black or carbon nanotubes). This normally results three effects, one corresponding to the increase of the dielectric constant in the vicinity of the percolation threshold, a second effect relates to an increase in local attractive forces which behave as internal constraints. In contrast, the third effect counteracts the electrostatic forces since it results from the increased stiffness due to the hard particles. Again, the competition between electrostatic and mechanical stress leads to an optimum induced-deformation associated to a fraction of reinforcing particles.
Document type :
Theses
Other. INSA de Lyon, 2011. French. <NNT : 2011ISAL0152>


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Komkrisd Wongtimnoi. Polyuréthanes électrostrictifs et nanocomposites : caractérisation et analyse des mécanismes de couplages électromécaniques. Other. INSA de Lyon, 2011. French. <NNT : 2011ISAL0152>. <tel-00708574>

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