A Self-powered Triboelectric Coral-Like Sensor Integrated Buoy for Irregular and Ultra-Low Frequency Ocean Wave Monitoring

Xinyu Wang, Jianhua Liu, Siyuan Wang, Jiaxi Zheng, Tangzhen Guan, Xiangyu Liu, Tingyu Wang, Tianyu Chen, Hao Wang, Guangming Xie, Peng Xu, Jin Tao, Minyi Xu; Advanced Materials Technologies, 2101098.


The design of efficient ocean wave sensors for monitoring the marine environment and revealing dynamic changes has been a major challenge. In this study, a self-powered bionic coral wave sensor (BCWS) based on a triboelectric nanogenerator is proposed. The BCWS captures wave data, which are useful for marine engineering construction, marine resource development, and marine disaster warning. It is mainly composed of triboelectric perceiving units (60 mm in length, 10 mm in width, and 1.5 mm in thickness) encapsulated in coral tentacles, a fixation mechanism, a buoyancy tray, and a counterweight mechanism. With the help of its bio-inspired structural design, the BCWS effectively improves the signal response time and sensitivity in the 3D perception of wave information. In particular, the coral tentacles stimulated by a load cause contact-separation between fluorinated ethylene propylene and conductive ink electrodes, thereby generating electric signals. This analysis of the experimental data reveals that the BCWS perceives wave height, wave frequency, wave period, and wave direction with millimeter accuracy. To demonstrate the applicability and stability of the BCWS, several of its potential functions are illustrated, including controlling light emitting diodes, perceiving wave information in the ocean, and assisting overboard rescue. The results show that the BCWS provides an intelligent solution for modern marine monitoring.