Hubei University began scientific research activities on ferroelectric materials and components in the 1970s. In 1990, it undertook the National High-tech R&D Program (863 Program). In 1993, the Institute of Piezoelectric Ceramics was established and began to work on ferroelectric materials. In 2004, the Hubei Provincial Key Laboratory of Ferroelectric Materials and Devices got the establishment approval from the Hubei Provincial Department of Education and the Hubei Provincial Department of Science and Technology. In 2007 it passed the acceptance. In 2016 it was evaluated as an excellent laboratory. The construction of the laboratory is based on and serves the local economic construction in Hubei Province. With the original basic research and applied basic research in the field of advanced electronic materials technology, the laboratory focuses on the study of functional ferroelectric, piezoelectric, new energy, ferromagnetic and photoelectric materials which have great application significance. It aims at the research of piezoelectric ceramic devices, micro-nano sensors, new energy and optoelectronic information devices. By revealing the intrinsic relationship among the processing, microstructure, properties and performance of the materials and devices, it explores the development and application of new materials and devices. The laboratory has made remarkable achievements in its basic research of piezoelectric ceramic materials and devices, ferroelectric thin films, integrated ferroelectric devices, nano-information materials and optoelectronic technology. It developed high-power piezoelectric ceramic transformers, piezoelectric ultrasonic motors, piezoelectric ceramic coupled solid-state relays, military radar power supplies as well as other products, making significant contributions to China's defense industry. After more than a decade’s development, the laboratory has formed three stable research fields: ferroelectric materials and devices, energy conversion and storage devices, sensing materials and sensors.
The first director of the laboratory was Professor Gu Haoshuang, Vice President of Hubei University. The director of the Academic Committee was chaired by Professor Nan Cewen from Tsinghua University who is an Academician of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. The present director is Professor Hu Yongming, the vice dean of the School of Physics and Electronic Science. With the support of the School of Physics and Electronic Science of Hubei University, the laboratory has established Hubei provincial characteristics discipline of Electronic Science and Technology, Hubei provincial key (nurture) discipline of Physics, disciplines of Microelectronics and Solid Electronics, Physical Electronics, Condensed Matter Physics, Circuits and System with posts for Chutian Scholars. It offers doctoral program of second-level disciplines in Nanometer Materials and Devices, Master's Degree Programs in Electronics Science and Technology and Physics, Master's Degree in Engineering in Electronics and Communication Engineering, and Master's Degree of Education in Teaching Methodology ( Physics ). The laboratory has a high-level research team of 50 members. Among them, 37 have associate senior or senior titles, accounting for 74% of the faculty while 88% of the whole faculty has got a doctoral degree. The laboratory has 5 distinguished professors from “Chutian Scholars” project of Hubei Province, 3 talents from the project of Hubei Provincial High-level New Century Talents, 3 Youth Experts with Outstanding Contributions in Hubei Province, and 2 talents enjoying special allowances from the State Council. Over the past five years, The laboratory has initiated more than 100 vertical and 45 horizontal projects, including the National High-tech R&D Program (863 Program), National Key Basic Research Development Plan (973 Plan), projects funded by National Natural Science Foundation and projects funded by Doctoral Foundation of the Ministry of Education. The research fund has totaled 28 million yuan. It has won 5 second prizes of Natural Science Fund of Hubei Province, authorized more than 30 patents for invention, and achieved 2 transformation of science and technology achievements. More than 500 papers have been published in internationally renowned journals such asChem. Rev., Adv. Mater., ACS Nano, Angew. Chem., Chem. Mater., J. Mater. Chem., Appl. Phys. Lett., 300 of which has been sorted out by SCI. The laboratory has an area of 3,100m2for scientific research, 40 advanced large-scale instruments and equipments with a total value of more than 30 million yuan for material synthesis and processing, performance testing and organizational structure analysis, data calculation and simulation.
Following the principle of openness, cooperation and mobility put forth by Hubei provincial government for key laboratories, the laboratory takes full advantage of its equipments and technical strength to set up open projects for scholars from home and abroad. At the same time, it holds international academic conferences to invite well-known professors home and abroad to give lectures and sends its researchers abroad to participate in international conferences or pay academic visits, thus strengthening its national and international academic exchanges. It has established good relationships with Pennsylvania State University of the USA, National University of Singapore, The Royal Institute of Technology of Sweden, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University of the USA, University of Wollongong of Australia, the Chinese University of Hong Kong, the Polytechnic University of Hong Kong, Tsinghua University, Institute of Semiconductors of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Soochou Institute of Nanoscience and other universities and research institutions. The laboratory also attaches great importance to its cooperation with domestic enterprises, providing technical services and consultant work in material synthesis, performance testing, inspection and analysis for domestic enterprises. It undertakes the school-enterprise cooperation program of Hubei Province to build a research and development center for intelligent terminal automation testing with Wuhan Yisida Technology Co., Ltd. It has also set up an industry-university-research cooperation base with Wuhan Tianma Microelectronics, Hubei Jiutongfang Company, Dayu Hanguang Company, Kaile Technology Company, etc..
The laboratory also undertakes the task of cultivating senior technical service talents. In the past five years, it has cultivated more than 300 students with a master degree, 12 students with a doctor degree and 3 doctoral thesis are included in the excellent ones in Hubei Province. The employment rate of graduate students has been 100%. We sincerely welcome postdoctors, visiting scholars and engineering and technical talents home and abroad to carry out scientific research in the laboratory, and welcome promising young talents with master or doctor degrees to further their study in the laboratory.