Program Highlights

Giant Electrostriction of Halide Perovskites Discovered

Jinsong Huang
University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill

Alexei Gruverman and Stephen Ducharme
Nebraska MRSEC

Halide perovskites are promising materials for efficient conversion of solar energy to electricity. They also exhibit other functional properties, which make them useful as radiation detectors and light-emitting diodes. However, the electromechanical properties of these materials so far have remained largely unexplored.
Nebraska MRSEC researchers have discovered a giant electrostriction effect in methylammonium lead triiodide (MAPbI3) – one the well known halide perovskites. They observed that when an electric field is applied to a MAPbI3 crystal, it becomes compressed along the field direction. This property is a signature of electrostriction, which refers to the strain in a material under applied electric field irrespective of the field sign. The researchers found that the electrostriction energy of halide perovskites is highest among all existing electrostrictive materials, and comparable to that of human muscles. This discovery may lead to new potential applications of halide perovskites as actuators, sonar and micro-electromechanical systems.
B. Chen, T. Li, Q. Dong, E. Mosconi, J. Song, Z. Chen, Y. Deng, Y. Liu, S. Ducharme, A. Gruverman, F. De Angeles, and J. Huang, “Large electrostrictive response in lead halide perovskites,” Nature Materials 17, 1020 (2018).

This research is supported by the National Science Foundation, Division of Materials Research, Materials Research Science and Engineering Program, Grant DMR-1420645.


119 highlight 2019

Electrostriction of halide perovskite MAPbI3. An electric bias produces an electric field which contracts the MAPbI3 single crystal along the field direction and expands it in the direction perpendicular to the field.

Highlight Info

Date: April 2019
Research Area:
IRG2: Polarization-enabled Electronic Phenomena