Lead-free piezoelectric materials and composites for high power density energy harvesting

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© 2018 Materials Research Society. In the emerging era of Internet of Things (IoT), power sources for wireless sensor nodes in conjunction with efficient and secure wireless data transfer are required. Energy harvesting technologies are promising solution toward meeting the requirements for sustainable power sources for the IoT. In this review, we focus on approaches for harvesting stray vibrations and magnetic field due to their abundance in the environment. Piezoelectric materials and piezoelectric-magnetostrictive [magnetoelectric (ME)] composites can be used to harvest vibration and magnetic field, respectively. Currently, such harvesters use modified lead zirconate titanate (or lead-based) piezoelectric materials and ME composites. However, environmental concerns and government regulations require the development of a suitable lead-free replacement for lead-based piezoelectric materials. In the past decade, several lead-free piezoelectric compositions have been developed and demonstrated with promising piezoelectric response. This paper reviews the significant results reported on lead-free piezoelectric materials with respect to high-density energy harvesting, covering novel processing techniques for improving the piezoelectric response and temperature stability. The review of the state-of-the-art studies on vibration and magnetic field harvesting is provided and the results are used to discuss various strategies for designing high-performance energy harvesting devices.

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Journal of Materials Research