Elastomeric microwell-based triboelectric nanogenerators by in situ simultaneous transfer-printing†
Self-powered tactile module-based electronic skins incorporating triboelectric nanogenerator (TENG) appears to be a worthwhile alternative for smart monitoring devices in terms of sustainable energy harvesting. On top of it, ultra-stretchability and detection sensitivity are imperative to mimic human skin. We report, for the first time, a metal-free single electrode TENG-based self-powered tactile module comprising of microwells (diameters 2 μm and 200 nm, respectively) on fluoroelastomer (FKM) and laser induced graphene (LIG) electrodes by in situ simultaneous transfer printing method. Direct imprinting of both the active surface and LIG electrode on a tribonegative FKM has not been attempted before. The resulting triboelectric module exhibits impressive maximum power density of 715 mW m−2, open circuit voltage and maximum output current of 148 V and 9.6 μA respectively for a matching load of 10 MΩ. Moreover, the TENG unit is very robust and sustained high electrical output even at 200% elongation. A dielectric-to-dielectric TENG-based tactile sensor is also constructed using FKM (negative tribolayer) and TiO2 deposited micropatterned PDMS. Resulting tribo-sensor demonstrates remarkable motion and force sensitivity. It can also distinguish subtle human contact force that can simulate skin with high sensitivity and therefore, can be utilized for potential e-skin/bionic skin applications in health and human-machine interfaces.
- This article is part of the themed collection: Recent Open Access Articles