Part of the BOSTON STUDIES IN PHILOSOPHY OF SCIENCE book series (BSPS, volume 246)


Voigt’s general theory reawakened an interest in piezoelectricity. The number of publications on the subject increased from three papers in 1890, to five in 1891 and seven in each of the following two years. More papers on piezoelectricity were published at the beginning of the 1890s than at the beginning of the 1880s, when the phenomena was discovered by the Curies.1 Still, this was a small field. While the contributions to the study of piezoelectricity during the 1880s were mainly experimental, only a small share of the contributions following Voigt’s theory included experimental work. Accordingly, the subject attracted either theoreticians or theoretically inclined professors of experimental physics, like Thomson and Riecke.2 The experimental work on piezoelectricity focused on the confirmation of the theory, the determination of its coefficients and its relationship to the kin phenomena of pyroelectricity and electrooptics. This work will be the subject of the next chapter. In the theoretical study, I differentiate between the theoretical speculations about the source of piezoelectricity, and elaborations of the phenomenological accounts. The former were the subject of the previous chapter; the latter are the subject of this one.


Thermodynamic Potential Piezoelectric Effect Thermodynamic Theory Thermodynamic Formulation Converse Effect 
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© Springer 2006

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