Triboelectric nanogenerators (TENGs) are used as self-power sources for various types of devices by converting external waves, wind, or other mechanical energies into electric power. However, obtaining a high-output performance is still of major concern for many applications. In this study, to enhance the output performance of polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS)-based TENGs, highly dielectric TiO2-x nanoparticles (NPs) were embedded as a function of weight ratio. TiO2-x NPs embedded in PDMS at 5% showed the highest output voltage and current. The improved output performance at 5% is strongly related to the change of oxygen vacancies on the PDMS surface, as well as the increased dielectric constant. Specifically, oxygen vacancies in the oxide nanoparticles are electrically positive charges, which is an important factor that can contribute to the exchange and trapping of electrons when driving a TENG. However, in TiO2-x NPs containing over 5%, the output performance was significantly degraded because of the increased leakage characteristics of the PDMS layer due to TiO2-x NPs aggregation, which formed an electron path.
Keywords: TiO2−x nanoparticle; high dielectric constant; oxygen vacancy; triboelectric nanogenerators.