Issue 5, 2021

Self-powered liquid chemical sensors based on solid–liquid contact electrification

Abstract

Triboelectric nanogenerators (TENGs) have attracted many research endeavors as self-powered sensors for force, velocity, and gas detection based on solid–solid or solid–air interactions. Recently, triboelectrification at liquid–solid interfaces also showed intriguing capability in converting physical contacts into electricity. Here, we report a self-powered triboelectric sensor for liquid chemical sensing based on liquid–solid electrification. As a liquid droplet passed across the tribo-negative sensor surface, the induced surface charge balanced with the electrical double layer charge in the liquid droplet. The competition between the double layer charge and surface charge generated characteristic positive and negative voltage spikes, which may serve as a “binary feature” to identify the chemical compound. The sensor showed distinct sensitivity to three amino acids including glycine, lysine and phenylalanine as a function of their concentration. The versatile sensing ability was further demonstrated on several other inorganic and organic chemical compounds dissolved in DI water. This work demonstrated a promising sensing application based on the triboelectrification principle for biofluid sensor development.

Graphical abstract: Self-powered liquid chemical sensors based on solid–liquid contact electrification

Supplementary files

Article information

Article type
Paper
Submitted
27 Oct 2020
Accepted
17 Jan 2021
First published
18 Jan 2021

Analyst, 2021,146, 1656-1662

Self-powered liquid chemical sensors based on solid–liquid contact electrification

Z. Ying, Y. Long, F. Yang, Y. Dong, J. Li, Z. Zhang and X. Wang, Analyst, 2021, 146, 1656 DOI: 10.1039/D0AN02126A

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