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Piezoelectric PVDF Materials Performance and Operation Limits in Space Environments

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 February 2011

Mathew C. Celina
Affiliation:
Organic Materials Dept. 1811, Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, NM, 87185–1411, U.S.A.
Tim R. Dargaville
Affiliation:
Organic Materials Dept. 1811, Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, NM, 87185–1411, U.S.A.
Pavel M. Chaplya
Affiliation:
Organic Materials Dept. 1811, Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, NM, 87185–1411, U.S.A.
Roger L. Clough
Affiliation:
Organic Materials Dept. 1811, Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, NM, 87185–1411, U.S.A.
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Abstract

Piezoelectric polymers based on polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) are of interest for large aperture space-based telescopes. Dimensional adjustments of adaptive polymer films are achieved via charge deposition and require a detailed understanding of the piezoelectric material responses which are expected to suffer due to strong vacuum UV, λ-, X-ray, energetic particles and atomic oxygen under low earth orbit exposure conditions. The degradation of PVDF and its copolymers under various stress environments has been investigated. Initial radiation aging studies using λ- and e-beam irradiation have shown complex material changes with significant crosslinking, lowered melting and Curie points (where observable), effects on crystallinity, but little influence on overall piezoelectric properties. Surprisingly, complex aging processes have also been observed in elevated temperature environments with annealing phenomena and cyclic stresses resulting in thermal depoling of domains. Overall materials performance appears to be governed by a combination of chemical and physical degradation processes. Molecular changes are primarily induced via radiative damage, and physical damage from temperature and AO exposure is evident as depoling and surface erosion. Major differences between individual copolymers have been observed providing feedback on material selection strategies.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © Materials Research Society 2005

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