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1-3 Random Fibre Composites

1-3 Random Fiber Composites

Smart Material manufactures 1-3 composites using piezo ceramic fibres as active rods, randomly distributed over the composite active area. 1-3 fiber composites are prepared by epoxy infiltration of fiber bundles and bundles and dicing of the cube-shaped blocks perpendicular to the direction of the fibers. This patented method is also called Arrange & Fill. A random distribution of the fibers allows for excellent suppression of lateral frequency modes.

1-3 Random Fiber A&F Composite specifications:

  •   Frequencies 80kHz to 8MHz
  •   PZT Navy type II
  •   Fill Factors 35%,65%,80%
  •   Maximun dimensions 8cm by 8cm, larger and curved on request
  •   Various epoxy and polyurethane interstitial materials available.
  •   Operational temperatures up to 135℃
  •   Available with Gold, Copper-Tin electrodes

1-3 Random Fiber A & F Composites specifications

Smart Material manufactures 1-3 composites using piezo ceramic fibers as active rods. PZT fiber composites are a cost-effective alternative compared to the Dice & Fill method. 1-3 fiber piezo composites are prepared by epoxy infiltration of fiber bundles and dicing of the cube-shaped blocks perpendicular to the direction of the fibers. This patented method is also called Arrange & Fill.

Using piezo ceramic fibers with 105µm, 250µm and 800µm diameters will yield fill factors of approx. 35%, 65% and 80% in a random distributed cross-section.

The random fiber composite material shows superior properties for ultrasound transduction, which is due to reduced acoustic impedance and high coupling factor. Additionally, 1-3 fiber composites with random element distribution yield an increased spurious mode suppression due to the random spacing.

1-3 Random Fiber Composite product specifications and selections

Resonance Frequencies 80kHZ up to 8MHz                  
 Frequency   Fiber Diameter (Pixel) Fill Factor Dimensions mm²  Availability
80kHz - 1MHz 105µm,250µm, 800µm 35%,65%,80% max. 100 x 100 Request
1MHz - 5MHz 105µm, 250µm 35%, 65% max. 100 x 100 Request
5MHz - 8MHz 105µm 35% max. 100 x 100 Request
Frequency Tolerances
± 10% typical
± 5% on request
Fill Factor 35%, 65%, 80%                  
Fill Factor Fiber Diameter (Pixel)  Frequency   Availability
35% 105µm 80kHz to 8MHz Request
65% 250µm 80kHz to 5MHz Request
80% 800µm 80kHz to 1MHz Request
PZT Materials PZT Navy Type II
PZT Material Di-electric Constant  Frequency   Availability
PZT Navy Type II, 5A 1850 80kHz to 100MHz Request
Acoustic Impedance 12 MRayl to 27 MRayl
Typical Fill Factors  Acoustic Impedance MRayl          
35% 12 MRayl
65% 22 MRayl
80% 27 MRayl
Available Electrodes CuSn (Copper with Tin flash layer) Au (Gold)
Electrode Material Frequency
CuSn 80kHz to 1MHz
CuSn, Au 1MHz to 8MHz
Dimensions Max. 100mm by 100mm, various round diameters
Maximum Dimensions Frequency Availability
100mm by 100mm 80kHz to 5MHz Request
65mm by 65mm 5MHz to 8MHz Request
Mechanical Tolerances:
< 6mm ± 0.1mm
< 6mm ± 0.2mm
> 30mm ± 0.3mm
Available Diameters mm Available Diameters inch Available Diameters mm Available Diameters inch
3.18mm 0.125" 12.70mm 0.500"
5.12mm 0.202" 14.20mm 0.559"
5.18mm 0.204" 15.90mm 0.626"
5.68mm 0.224" 17.50mm 0.689"
6.00mm 0.236" 18.00mm 0.709"
6.50mm 0.256" 19.05mm 0.750"
8.20mm 0.323" 20.00mm 0.787"
9.00mm 0.354" 24.00mm 0.945"
9.50mm 0.374" 25.40mm 1"
10.00mm 0.394" 30.00mm 1.181"
10.20mm 0.402" 35.00mm 1.378"
12.00mm 0.472" 37.7mm 1.48"
Coupling Coefficient kt 0.61 to 0.68, fiber diameter - max. frequency aspect ratio rules apply
Fiber Diameter Max. Frequency for the best kt            
105µm 8MHz
250µm 4MHz
800µm 1MHz
Operational Temperatures Typical 95°C, 135°C on request
Interstitial Materials Various Epoxy systems

Typical Ultrasound Applications for 1-3 Random Fiber Composites

  •   NDT,Non-Destructive Testing
  •   SONAR, single element transducer
  •   Air Ultrasound Transducer
  •   Flow Control and Measurement

Due to the Arrange & Fill production method the raw 1-3 fiber composite material are typically blocks of up to 10cm length and the lateral dimensions of the targeted element.

The A&F method also allows to machine 1-3 composites into various shapes and forms, in addition to slicing elements with the desired resonance frequency of the raw fiber block.

Plano-Concave This includes precise concave or convex contours for superior broadband ultrasound receiver applications.
The Arrange & Fill production method is easily scalable for volume quantities which also allows for short lead time, a major advantage over the commonly used Dice & Fill method.

Smart Material offers various standard Epoxy and Polyurethane systems as the interstitial material for its random fiber composites, often called filler. The different, available filler materials allow for operational temperatures between 95°C and 135°C.