An improved thermodynamic cycle is validated in ferroelectric single crystals, where the cooling effect of an electrocaloric refrigerant is enhanced by applying a reversed electric field. In contrast to the conventional adiabatic heating or cooling by on-off cycles of the external electric field, applying a reversed field is significantly improving the cooling efficiency, since the variation in configurational entropy is increased. By comparing results from computer simulations using Monte Carlo algorithms and experiments using direct electrocaloric measurements, we show that the electrocaloric cooling efficiency can be enhanced by more than 20% in standard ferroelectrics and also relaxor ferroelectrics, like Pb(Mg1/3/Nb2/3)0.71Ti0.29O3.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Condensed Matter Physics