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Nanotechnology. 2014 May 2;25(17):175401. doi: 10.1088/0957-4484/25/17/175401. Epub 2014 Apr 10.

Piezoelectric monolayers as nonlinear energy harvesters.

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Departament d'Enginyeria Electrònica; Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona; E-08193 Bellaterra, Barcelona, Spain.


We study the dynamics of h-BN monolayers by first performing ab-initio calculations of the deformation potential energy and then solving numerically a Langevine-type equation to explore their use in nonlinear vibration energy harvesting devices. An applied compressive strain is used to drive the system into a nonlinear bistable regime, where quasi-harmonic vibrations are combined with low-frequency swings between the minima of a double-well potential. Due to its intrinsic piezoelectric response, the nonlinear mechanical harvester naturally provides an electrical power that is readily available or can be stored by simply contacting the monolayer at its ends. Engineering the induced nonlinearity, a 20 nm2 device is predicted to harvest an electrical power of up to 0.18 pW for a noisy vibration of 5 pN.

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