Sound Absorption Improvement in Porous Ferroelectret Polyethylene with Effective Piezoelectric Mechanism

Polymers (Basel). 2022 Nov 10;14(22):4843. doi: 10.3390/polym14224843.


Airborne sound absorption in porous materials involves complex mechanisms of converting mechanical acoustic energy into heat. In this work, the effective piezoelectric properties of polyethylene ferroelectret foams on sound absorption were investigated by comparable samples with and without the piezoelectric response. Corona poling and thermal annealing treatments were applied to the samples in order to enable and remove the piezoelectric property, respectively, while the microstructure and the mechanical properties remained substantially unchanged. The effective piezoelectric properties and airborne sound absorption coefficients of the polyethylene foam samples before and after material treatments were measured and analyzed. Our experimental results and theoretical analysis showed that the open-cell ferroelectret polymer foam with an effective piezoelectric property provides an additional electromechanical energy conversion mechanism to enhance the airborne acoustic absorption performance.

Keywords: acoustic absorbers; ferroelectret; foam; noise mitigation; piezoelectric; polyethylene.