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New ceramic plates enable advancement of SONAR

09 July 2009

Morgan Technical Ceramics has developed a new processing technique for manufacturing the ceramic plates used in piezoelectric composite transducers for SONAR equipment. The result of the new process is a component with consistent material density distribution, which gives reliable operating performance, critical for medical, commercial and defence applications. The new plates enable customers to improve electromechanical coupling and acoustic impedance characteristics of the transducers, leading to a higher resolution of the SONAR equipment. As a result the plates can enable the advancement of SONAR technologies, such as the new high-resolution 4-D ultrasound scanning technology used in medical imaging.

“Key drivers from our customers are for very consistent properties throughout the plate, and many manufacturers have struggled to deliver this,” says Dr Ashley Darby, Business Manager, Morgan Technical Ceramics. “We have successfully refined our manufacturing processes at our site in Ruabon, UK and have worked closely with our customers to develop a cost-effective component that meets their needs.”

The company now has the capability to manufacture ceramic plates up to 30mm thickness, with an even density distribution throughout the plate. These are diced into pillars of widths as small as two millimetres and embedded in a resin mix which are then used by customers to make 1-3 composites. In addition to a more cost effective component the new process also significantly reduces lead time. Ceramic plates can now be manufactured and delivered within 30 days of ordering.

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