Coupled Triboelectric Nanogenerator Networks for Efficient Water Wave Energy Harvesting

Water wave energy is a promising clean energy source, which is abundant but hard to scavenge economically. Triboelectric nanogenerator (TENG) networks provide an effective approach toward massive harvesting of water wave energy in oceans. In this work, a coupling design in TENG networks for such purposes is reported. The charge output of the rationally linked units is over 10 times of that without linkage. TENG networks of three different connecting methods are fabricated and show better performance for the ones with flexible connections. The network is based on an optimized ball-shell structured TENG unit with high responsivity to small agitations. The dynamic behavior of single and multiple TENG units is also investigated comprehensively to fully understand their performance in water. The study shows that a rational design on the linkage among the units could be an effective strategy for TENG clusters to operate collaboratively for reaching a higher performance.