Development of porous ZnO thin films for enhancing piezoelectric nanogenerators and force sensors

Ping Che Lee, Yu Liang Hsiao, Jit Dutta, Ruey Chi Wang, Shih Wen Tseng, Chuan Pu Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The applications of piezoelectric nanogenerators (PENGs) as a sustainable power source for portable electronic devices are still limited due to low voltage output ranging from mini- to several volts. In this study, we first develop a porous ZnO structure by annealing (650–950 °C) sputtered ZnO thin film. The porous ZnO thin film enables a significant enhancement in the output voltage of primitive PENG (up to 3 mV), i.e., by 7.5 times than that of pristine ZnO (0.4 mV). Concurrently, the introduction of pores in ZnO thin films leads to a 6.9-fold enhancement in the sensitivity of piezotronic force sensor compared to the pristine one. These excellent performances are further supported by up to two-fold enhancement in the piezoelectric coefficient (2.62 pm/V) than that of pristine ZnO (1.12 pm/V). Herein, we conducted transmission electron microscopy characterizations and found that this phenomenon can be ascribed to the lattice contraction in the c-direction induced by the pores. The diffusion-controlled pore formation mechanism is elucidated.

Original languageEnglish
Article number105702
JournalNano Energy
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Apr

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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