Ambiguous Definitions Of The Piezoelectric Coupling Factor
When a piezoelectric material is subjected to a quasi-static electric (or mechanical) load, part of the input energy is converted to the mechanical (or electric) domain. The piezoelectric coupling factor k2 is defined as the ratio between the converted energy and the supplied energy. This factor is often considered as a measure of the transduction efficiency of the material. Another definition of the coupling factor is a non-dimensional ratio of material coefficients. To examine the compatibility between these two different definitions, we consider several quasi-static loading cycles of a simple one-dimensional problem. We show that in some specific cases, the two definitions are equivalent, but that in other cases they are incompatible. In addition, we show that in specific quasi-static loading cycles, the converted energy may be increased by a slight modification of the unloading part of the cycle.