A cerebral cortex-like structured metallized elastomer for high-performance triboelectric nanogenerator

Moon Kyu Park, Seokmin Lee, Yongmin Ko, Jinhan Cho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The advancement of wearable electronics, particularly triboelectric nanogenerators (TENGs), relies on the development of flexible, stretchable, and compressible electrodes that possess a large active surface area, high electrical conductivity, and excellent mechanical stability and deformability. However, existing elastomeric electrodes face challenges in meeting all of these requirements. Herein, we present a novel approach to address these limitations and create electrodes with elastomeric properties, stable metal-like electrical conductivity, and an expanded active surface area. For this goal, we perform an assembly of metal nanoparticles (NPs) in toluene and amine-functionalized organic linkers in alcohol onto the thiol-functionalized, embossed-structured elastomer. Particularly, the assembly process involves ligand exchange reaction-mediated metal NPs and subjecting them to solvent-swelling/deswelling of the embossed PDMS. This process induces the formation of cerebral cortex-like structured elastomer electrode, which is subsequently electroplated with Ni. The resulting electrodes exhibit metal-like electrical conductivity, elastomer-like flexibility, and cerebral cortex-like structure with substantially large surface area and high stress relieving properties. When combined with an intaglio-structured dielectric PDMS electrode, the device exhibits impressive TENG performance, surpassing the performance of conventional TENGs. This approach provides a basis for developing and designing a variety of high-performance flexible electronics, including TENGs.

Original languageEnglish
Article number108828
JournalNano Energy
Publication statusPublished - 2023 Nov

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korean government (Ministry of Science and ICT) (NRF- 2021R1A2C3004151 ) and the KU-KIST School Program .

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 The Authors


  • Cerebral cortex-like structure
  • Deformable electrode
  • Triboelectric nanogenerator

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • General Materials Science
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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