High-performance piezoelectric nanogenerators based on chemically-reinforced composites†
High-performance flexible piezoelectric nanogenerators (PNGs) based on composite thin films comprising amine-functionalized lead zirconate titanate (PZT) nanoparticles (PZT-NH2 NPs) and a thermoplastic triblock copolymer grafted with maleic anhydride are fabricated. The chemically reinforced composite contains a stable dispersion of PZT NPs within the polymer matrix with enhanced stress applied to the PZT NPs. Without additional dispersants, the uniform distribution of PZT-NH2 NPs in the polymer composite improves the piezoelectric power generation compared to that of a PNG device using pristine PZT NPs. This unique composite behavior allows the PZT-NH2 NP-based flexible PNG to exhibit a high output voltage of 65 V and current of 1.6 μA without time-dependent degradation. This alternating energy from the PNG can be used to charge a capacitor and operate light-emitting diodes through a full bridge rectifier. Furthermore, the proposed PNG is demonstrated as a promising energy harvester for potential applications in self-powered systems.