Biodegradable triboelectric nanogenerator as a life-time designed implantable power source

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Science Advances  04 Mar 2016:
Vol. 2, no. 3, e1501478
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.1501478

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Transient electronics built with degradable organic and inorganic materials is an emerging area and has shown great potential for in vivo sensors and therapeutic devices. However, most of these devices require external power sources to function, which may limit their applications for in vivo cases. We report a biodegradable triboelectric nanogenerator (BD-TENG) for in vivo biomechanical energy harvesting, which can be degraded and resorbed in an animal body after completing its work cycle without any adverse long-term effects. Tunable electrical output capabilities and degradation features were achieved by fabricated BD-TENG using different materials. When applying BD-TENG to power two complementary micrograting electrodes, a DC-pulsed electrical field was generated, and the nerve cell growth was successfully orientated, showing its feasibility for neuron-repairing process. Our work demonstrates the potential of BD-TENG as a power source for transient medical devices.

  • biodegradable
  • triboelectric nanogenerator
  • implantable medical devices
  • transient electronics
  • power source

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