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Nature-inspired PDMS cumulonimbus micro-energy-harvesting cloud

Publication Type : Journal Article

Publisher : Applied Nanoscience, Springer

Source : Applied Nanoscience, SCI (Impact factor 3.19), Springer, Volume 11, Issue 127–137 (2020)

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Keywords : Cloud, Energy harvesting, Lightning, Mobile charging, Polydimethyl siloxane PDMS

Campus : Amritapuri

School : School for Sustainable Futures, School of Engineering

Department : Mechanical Engineering, Electronics and Communication

Year : 2020

Abstract : Here in this work, nanoenergy-generating films mimicked from cumulonimbus cloud were prepared using deionised water (DI) in polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS). Various characterisation methods have been adopted to verify the content of water as well as the resemblance of the morphological structure of the water-entrapped polymer films with clouds which include scanning electron microscopy and optical reflectance imaging techniques. The water content entrapment in the polymer is verified using the ATR-IR spectroscopy by finding absorbance peaks at 3266 and 1634 cm−1. Polyethylene terephthalate (PET) sheets with a copper coating (Cu-PET) were used as contact electrodes, and the device was fabricated by the simple sandwiching process. Dielectric studies of the device under an applied electric field were used to illustrate the presence of interfacial hopping as well as orientational polarisation in the device. The device fabricated shows an enhancement of 218% and 562% with an increase in water content from 4:1 to 1:1 and a decrease of 26% and 36.5% with a further increase in water for the generated voltage and current measured, respectively. The optimum concentration of polymer to water is selected as 1:1 and the decrease in current and voltage may be due to the condensation of water molecules leading to fewer contact sites between the water and polymer molecules. The devices showed an increment of voltage and current of 171.1 V and 29.16 nA, respectively, with an increase in the force of 1–5 N by using an automated input system. The device was tested under various mechanical inputs, and the generated energy used as sensors in the knock sensor, home doorbell system and seabed vibration detector and as a secondary powering source for charging mobile phones and lighting LED.

Cite this Research Publication : Sreenidhi P. R., V. John, N., Sabarinath S., Ashfak, A., Subash, C. Karimuthil, and Varghese, S., “Nature-inspired PDMS cumulonimbus micro-energy-harvesting cloud”, Applied Nanoscience, SCI (Impact factor 3.19), vol. 11, no. 127–137, 2020. (Scopus Q2)

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