A simple and direct method has been proposed, which may be used for quantitatively distinguishing the mechanisms of domain reorientation processes in polycrystalline materials. Using this method, the 90‡ domain reorientation in the Pb(ZrxTi1-x)O3 ceramic under an electric field was examined through the X-ray diffraction analysis. It was found that polarization switching in the PZT ceramic with a composition near the morphotropic phase boundary, is predominantly controlled by the two successive 90‡ domain processes rather than only the 180‡ domain reversal process. Experimental results also indicate that the coercive field of ferroelectric ceramics is related to the cooperative deformation associated with each grain. This cooperative deformation arises from the 90‡ domain-reversal process.
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