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Title: A flexible and wearable joint motion sensor using triboelectric nanogenerators for hand gesture monitoring

Authors: Charanya Sukumaran; Pramila Viswanathan; Prabavathi Munirathinam; Arunkumar Chandrasekhar

Addresses: Nanosensors and Nanoenergy Lab, Department of Sensor and Biomedical Technology, School of Electronics Engineering, Vellore Institute of Technology, Vellore 632014, Tamil Nadu, India ' Nanosensors and Nanoenergy Lab, Department of Sensor and Biomedical Technology, School of Electronics Engineering, Vellore Institute of Technology, Vellore 632014, Tamil Nadu, India ' Nanosensors and Nanoenergy Lab, Department of Sensor and Biomedical Technology, School of Electronics Engineering, Vellore Institute of Technology, Vellore 632014, Tamil Nadu, India ' Nanosensors and Nanoenergy Lab, Department of Sensor and Biomedical Technology, School of Electronics Engineering, Vellore Institute of Technology, Vellore 632014, Tamil Nadu, India

Abstract: The rapid advancement in electronic devices and miniaturisation leads to the development of portable and wearable electronic devices for various day-to-day activities. Wearable technology has been rapidly expanding all over the globe due to its flexibility, sensitivity, durability, and multifunctionality as its desirable features. Most of the devices have a higher-end application such as robotics and gesture recognition integrated with artificial intelligence. In this work we propose a Flexion based Triboelectric nanogenerator (F-TENG), which scavenges the mechanical motion of the human finger joints and converts into an electrical signal that can be further programmed using a microcontroller to actuate robotic devices, giving a deeper insight towards self-powered robotic and gesture monitoring applications. The TENG device consists of silicone elastomer as the sensing layer onto which an aluminium electrode is embedded, which enhances the flow of charges between the skin and elastomer and works on the principle of single electrode mode contact electrification. This mode of designing a finger motion sensor is a cost-effective approach, with simple and easy fabrication. The device generates a maximum voltage of ~75 V and ~9 μA current with high power density. The performance analysis proves that F-TENG can serve as a potential candidate for acquiring the joint signals leading to a world of automation.

Keywords: wearable; triboelectric nanogenerator; robotics; artificial intelligence; Flexion; contact electrification; self-powered; cost-effective.

DOI: 10.1504/IJNT.2021.116183

International Journal of Nanotechnology, 2021 Vol.18 No.5/6/7/8, pp.697 - 704

Received: 08 May 2021
Accepted: 12 May 2021

Published online: 21 Jun 2021 *

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