Resonant manifestation of intrinsic nonlinearity within electroelastic micropower generators
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This letter investigates the nonlinear response of a bimorph energy harvester comprised of lead zirconate titanate (PZT-5A) laminates. For near resonant excitations, we demonstrate significant intrinsic nonlinear behavior despite geometrically linear motion. Fourth order elastic and electroelastic tensor values for PZT-5A are identified following methods recently published concerning a PZT-5H bimorph. A response trend indicative of a nonlinear dissipative mechanism is discussed as well as the inadequacy of linear modeling. The PZT-5A bimorph exhibits an increased softening frequency response in comparison to PZT-5H. The results contained herein are also applicable to electroelastic sensor and actuator technologies. © 2010 American Institute of Physics.