The complexity found in the structure and operation of piezoelectric devices continues to increase, and, at the same time, designers are placing a greater emphasis on a more global approach to the design of such devices. In this paper we present and summarize the methodology for a more global approach to the design of piezoelectric devices that was developed at Magsoft Corporation and Cedrat Recherche.
Because it can accurately solve coupled-field problems, the finite element method (FEM) is the most suited numerical method available to produce efficient models of induced strain structures. Other parts of the piezoelectric devices, such as their drive electronics and control loops, must also be modeled. A computer aided electrical network analyzer is undoubtedly much more suited for this purpose. Therefore, we have combined these two computer aided techniques (FEM and electrical networks), and in this paper we show that it is possible to perform accurate simulations of complex mechatronic devices.
In this paper we also describe some applications and explain how they are currently being studied at Magsoft Corporation and Cedrat Recherche. This is illustrated with examples taken from the fields of: piezoelectric actuating and sensing, precise positioning, active damping of vibrations, and piezoelectric motors design. The results obtained from the design of these applications are encouraging and prove that our design methodology, more global and using the combination of different computer aided modeling tools, is valid.