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Low-Cost, Environmentally Friendly, and High-Performance Triboelectric Nanogenerator Based on a Common Waste Material

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journal contribution
posted on 24.06.2021, 14:09 authored by Yanhong Li, Zhihao Zhao, Yikui Gao, Shaoxin Li, Linglin Zhou, Jie Wang, Zhong Lin Wang
With the great progress in human activities and production technologies, the waste inevitably produced causes not only environmental pollution but also resource waste; meanwhile, the mobile and portable electronic devices urgently need a distributed and sustainable energy source to ensure their stable operation. Here, the waste pollutants (milk cartons) generated from daily life, commonly associated with environmental concerns, are instead identified as an available resource for preparing an emerging energy harvester (triboelectric nanogenerator, TENG), which can convert ubiquitous mechanical energy into electric power. Consequently, based on the waste material, the initial charge density of the TENG is as low as 0.035 mC m–2, which can be tremendously improved to 1.00 mC m–2 through combining a charge excitation circuit, achieving efficient energy harvesting. In addition, compared to the common dielectric film, the waste material can reduce the cost and simplify the process of the preparation of TENG. This work provides not only an innovative approach to simultaneously realize environmental protection and energy harvesting but also more material choice for the preparation of a low-cost and high-performance TENG.