Dopant Concentration Controls Quasi-Static Electrostrictive Strain Response of Ceria Ceramics

Maxim Varenik, Juan Claudio Nino, Ellen Wachtel, Sangtae Kim, Ori Yeheskel, Nimrod Yavo, Igor Lubomirsky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Electromechanically active ceramic materials, piezoelectrics and electrostrictors, provide the backbone of a variety of consumer technologies. Gd- and Sm-doped ceria are ion conducting ceramics, finding application in fuel cells, oxygen sensors, and, potentially, as memristor materials. While optimal design of ceria-based devices requires a thorough understanding of their mechanical and electromechanical properties, reports of systematic study of the effect of dopant concentration on the electromechanical behavior of ceria-based ceramics are lacking. Here we report the longitudinal electrostriction strain coefficient (M33) of dense RExCe1-xO2-x/2 (x ≤ 0.25) ceramic pellets, where RE = Gd or Sm, measured under ambient conditions as a function of dopant concentration within the frequency range f = 0.15-350 Hz and electric field amplitude E ≤ 0.5 MV/m. For >100 Hz, all ceramic pellets tested, independent of dopant concentration, exhibit longitudinal electrostriction strain coefficient with magnitude on the order of 10-18 m2/V2. The quasi-static (f < 1 Hz) electrostriction strain coefficient for undoped ceria is comparable in magnitude, while introducing 5 mol % Gd or 5 mol % Sm produces an increase in M33 by up to 2 orders of magnitude. For x ≤ 0.1 (Gd)-0.15 (Sm), the Debye-type relaxation time constant (τ) is in the range 60-300 ms. The inverse relationship between dopant concentration and quasi-static electrostrictive strain parallels the anelasticity and ionic conductivity of Gd- and Sm-doped ceria ceramics, indicating that electrostriction is partially governed by ordering of vacancies and changes in local symmetry.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39381-39387
Number of pages7
JournalACS applied materials & interfaces
Issue number35
StatePublished - 2 Sep 2020
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 American Chemical Society.


This work was supported in part by the BioWings project, which has received funding from the European Union Horizon 2020 under the Future and Emerging Technologies (FET) program with Grant Agreement No. 801267 and by the U.S.–Israel Binational Science Foundation (2016006). This work was made possible in part by the historic generosity of the Harold L. Perlman Family Foundation.

FundersFunder number
Harold L. Perlman Family Foundation
Horizon 2020 Framework Programme
H2020 Future and Emerging Technologies801267
United States-Israel Binational Science Foundation2016006
Horizon 2020


    • anelasticity
    • doped ceria
    • elastic moduli
    • electrostriction
    • nanoindentation
    • point defects
    • primary creep
    • ultrasonic time of flight


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