Nanogenerator-Based Self-Charging Energy Storage Devices
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The progress of nanogenerator-based self-charging energy storage devices is summarized.
The fabrication technologies of nanomaterials, device designs, working principles, self-charging performances, and the potential application fields of self-charging storage devices are presented and discussed.
Some perspectives and problems that need to be solved are described.
KeywordsNanomaterial Nanogenerator Energy storage device Self-charging
With the rapid development of economy and society, microelectronic devices are playing an increasingly important role in our daily lives. Usually, these devices can be powered using lithium-ion batteries or supercapacitors, which require external power sources to periodically charge them due to their limited capacities [1, 2, 3]. Moreover, it will cost a significant quantity of manpower, financial resources, and time, especially in remote areas. For power supply, scientists are researching new methods of scavenging clean energies from the surrounding environment [6, 7, 8, 9, 10]. Based on this background, the piezoelectric and triboelectric nanogenerators were invented by Wang et al. in 2006 and 2012, respectively [4, 5], which can effectively convert small mechanical energy into electrical energy in the ambient environment, such as wind energy [6, 7], wave energy , droplet energy , and other mechanical energies . They are clean or wasted energies in our surrounding environment. Nanogenerators not only can effectively scavenge mechanical energies mentioned above, but also have several advantages such as simple, small, light, low cost, no auxiliaries, and convenient. They can be applied to wireless sensors and microelectronics devices. Currently, research and development of self-powered electronic devices have become a hot topic among scientists [11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28]. In particular, remarkable progress has been made in the field of self-charging power textile for wearable electronics [29, 30, 31, 32, 33]. Thus, it is important to investigate self-charging energy storage devices that can effectively integrate energy harvesting and storage units in one device for powering some small electronic devices with sustainable energy supply.
This review focuses on the progress of nanogenerator-based self-charging energy storage devices in recent years. The fabrication technologies of nanomaterials, device designs, working principles, self-charging performances, and the potential application fields of self-charging storage devices are presented and discussed here. Moreover, some perspectives and problems that need to be solved are also described, which can pave the path for practical applications.
Due to the large specific surface area and excellent energy storage characteristics, nanomaterials demonstrate a reversible capacity higher than that of the commercial products. New nanomaterials have fundamental advancements regarding energy storage and conversion devices, both of which are important to satisfy the challenges of the finite nature of fossil fuels and environmental problems. Over these years, scientists have conducted a wide range of research and achieved a series of experimental progresses.
3 Li-ion Batteries and Supercapacitors
4 Self-Charging Principles
Pu et al. reported a method to solve the problem of the impedance match between the TENG and a battery with appropriate design of transformers . It provides an effective method to solve the problem of impedance match between TENGs and energy storage devices.
5 Self-Charging Performances
7 Summary and Outlook
This review is focused on the recent progress of nanogenerator-based self-charging energy storage devices. The major achievements in this field can be summarized as follows: (1) Various self-charging devices have been developed to scavenge the mechanical energy and store it in themselves, which can be used to power some small electronic devices. (2) Self-charging principles of the energy storage devices have been investigated in details, where piezoelectric and triboelectric effects have been used to explain the working mechanisms of these devices. (3) Substantial practical applications of self-charging energy storage devices have been demonstrated, ranging from wearable electronics, sports monitoring, wireless sensors, to daily electronics.
Although significant improvements have been achieved, some problems regarding the investigations of nanogenerator-based self-charging energy storage devices are needed to be addressed: (1) Device life is a very critical matter in practical application. More attention needs to be focused on the device life to realize long-life devices. It may be necessary to start with material selection, structure design, etc. (2) LIBs or supercapacitors can be used for self-charging energy storage devices; the capacities and impedances of them should match the output of the energy-harvesting systems for higher conversion efficiency. Moreover, cost, safety, and easiness to integrate these devices are also one of the prior concerns. (3) The development of self-charging energy storage devices in future should follow the trend of miniaturization, diversification, integration, and portability.
In summary, developing nanogenerator-based self-charging devices is one of the effective methods to solve issues of continuous energy supply of the next-generation microelectronic devices. A series of research results regarding scavenging and storing the mechanical energy has been obtained, but there are still several problems to be solved such as other energy scavenging and storage systems, device life. Owing to the unremitting efforts by a large number of researchers around the world, we believe that the self-charging storage devices will be extensively applied in our daily life in the near future, especially for wearable electronic devices and self-powered systems.
The authors acknowledge the support from the National Key R&D Program of China (No. 2016YFA0202701), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 51472055), External Cooperation Program of BIC, Chinese Academy of Sciences (No. 121411KYS820150028), the 2015 Annual Beijing Talents Fund (No. 2015000021223ZK32), the University of Chinese Academy of Sciences (No. Y8540XX2D2), Qingdao National Laboratory for Marine Science and Technology (No. 2017ASKJ01), the Shenzhen Peacock Plan (No. KQTD2015071616442225), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 51504133), the Natural Science Foundation of Liaoning Province (No. 20170540465), and the “thousands talents” program for the pioneer researcher and his innovation team, China.
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