Researchers from Incheon National University, South Korea Developed Cement-Based Composites that Generate and Store Electricity by Contact Electrification

November 29 2021

The concept of a smart city, which involves energy-efficient ecosystems that can reduce carbon emissions, save energy, and provide better lives, are no longer a thing of the distant future. In a recent study published in Nano Energy, researchers from Incheon National University (INU), including Prof. Seung-Jung Lee, along with researchers from Kyung Hee University and Korea University, are developing an all-new structural material that can make construction more eco-friendly. The team developed a cement-based conductive composite (CBC) with carbon fibers that can also act as a triboelectric nanogenerator (TENG)— a type of mechanical energy harvester. This paper was available online on 3rd August 2021 and was published in Volume 89, Part A of the journal Nano Energy in November 2021.
Incheon National University researchers have developed a novel cement-based composite that can generate and store energy induced via contact between materials. This material could be used to build buildings that can harvest energy from human motion in their floors and wind and raindrops hitting them.

The team designed a lab-scale NZES and a CBC-based capacitor using the developed material to test its energy harvesting and storage abilities. The results indicated that at a 1% volume of conductive carbon fibers in a cement mixture, the CBC mixture exhibits optimal electrical properties while retaining the superior mechanical properties of cement. The researchers’ electrical measurements confirmed that CBC-TENG could be safely used as a building material as the current generated by it was much lower than the maximum allowable current for the human body.

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