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Coupled Structural/Acoustic/Piezoelectric Transducer Analysis

A preliminary design of a piezoelectric transducer was developed by our client based on existing design methodologies and experience. However, the transducer application and operating environment were unique, resulting in less than optimal performance of the device. In an effort to better understand the transducer's behavior and assess its sensitivity to design and environmental parameters, a finite element harmonic response analysis of the transducer was performed by CAE Associates.

The analysis involved coupling of structural, acoustic, and voltage degrees of freedom in order to characterize the physics of the system. The transducer's natural frequencies, mode shapes, and sound pressure levels closely matched experimental data when the unit was tested in open air. Analysis in its true operating environment, which was a small container filled with liquid, showed potential causes for the excessive power loss that had been observed.

Having demonstrated the feasibility of an analytical solution to the problem, CAE Associates provided the model and analysis methodology to the client. Design modifications and sensitivity studies were perfomed by the customer using this model, resulting in an improved transducer design.