Tunable Work Function of Mg x Zn 1-x O as a Viable Friction Material for a Triboelectric Nanogenerator

Qi Zhen Guo, Liang Ciao Yang, Ruey Chi Wang, Chuan Pu Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Since the invention of triboelectric nanogenerators (TENGs), their output performance has been improved through various approaches such as material surface modification, device structure optimization, and so on, but rarely through the development of new friction materials. In this work, a magnetron sputtered Mg x Zn 1-x O film is developed as a viable friction material that rubs against polydimethylsiloxane in a TENG. The work function, measured by Kelvin probe microscopy, of the Mg x Zn 1-x O films can be effectively tuned by varying Mg composition, x, and exposed surface facets, which are shown to dominate the charge-transfer behavior. In addition, film thickness also plays an important role, affecting the output performance. The output voltage and total charge of a TENG with a Mg x Zn 1-x O film are demonstrated to be tremendously enhanced by 55 and 90 times, respectively, compared to that of a TENG with a ZnO film. Even more intriguingly, the tribo-output polarity can be reversed by adjusting the relative work function through varying the preferred growth orientation of the Mg x Zn 1-x O film, for a given value of Mg content.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1420-1425
Number of pages6
JournalACS Applied Materials and Interfaces
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Jan 9

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Materials Science(all)

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Tunable Work Function of Mg <sub>x</sub> Zn <sub>1-x</sub> O as a Viable Friction Material for a Triboelectric Nanogenerator'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this