Linear-grating triboelectric generator based on sliding electrification

Guang Zhu, Jun Chen, Ying Liu, Peng Bai, Yu Sheng Zhou, Qingshen Jing, Caofeng Pan, Zhong Lin Wang

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

408 Citations (Scopus)


The triboelectric effect is known for many centuries and it is the cause of many charging phenomena. However, it has not been utilized for energy harvesting until very recently.(1-5) Here we developed a new principle of triboelectric generator (TEG) based on a fully contacted, sliding electrification process, which lays a fundamentally new mechanism for designing universal, high-performance TEGs to harvest diverse forms of mechanical energy in our daily life. Relative displacement between two sliding surfaces of opposite triboelectric polarities generates uncompensated surface triboelectric charges; the corresponding polarization created a voltage drop that results in a flow of induced electrons between electrodes. Grating of linear rows on the sliding surfaces enables substantial enhancements of total charges, output current, and current frequency. The TEG was demonstrated to be an efficient power source for simultaneously driving a number of small electronics. The principle established in this work can be applied to TEGs of different configurations that accommodate the needs of harvesting energy and/or sensing from diverse mechanical motions, such as contacted sliding, lateral translation, and rotation/rolling.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2282-2289
Number of pages8
JournalNano Letters
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 8 May 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Electrification
  • energy harvesting
  • sliding
  • triboelectric generator

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Chemistry (all)
  • Materials Science (all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanical Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'Linear-grating triboelectric generator based on sliding electrification'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this