Green paper-based piezoelectronics for sensors and actuators
We report a novel biodegradable piezoelectric composite fabricated from paper and the piezoelectric salt, sodium potassium tartrate tetrahydrate (Rochelle salt, which we term PiezoSalt). The piezoelectric composite is non-toxic and is fabricated free of environmentally harmful solvents by impregnating PiezoSalt into a paper matrix through the crystallization of a concentrated PiezoSalt brine solution. The composite exhibits an effective piezoelectric constant between 3 and 25 pC N-1, dielectric constant of 7, mass density of 625 kg m(-3), and a Young's modulus between 7 and 8 GPa. When directly actuated, cm-scale cantilevers consisting of PiezoSalt paper produced clearly audible sound waves, illustrating one potential application. PiezoSalt paper composite provides a scalable, high throughput approach for biodegradable sensors and transducers with unsurpassed environmentally friendly processing. (C) 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.