Self-powered eye motion sensor based on triboelectric interaction and near-field electrostatic induction for wearable assistive technologies

David Vera Anaya, Tianyiyi He, Chengkuo Lee, Mehmet R. Yuce

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

94 Citations (Scopus)


Triboelectric nanogenerators show great potential as flexible motion transducers for wearable human-machine interfaces (HMI). The present research explores a new configuration named Non-Attached Electrode-Dielectric Triboelectric Sensor (NEDTS) and its application in specialized HMI to support people with disabilities in daily life. In this topology, the conductive electrodes are not bonded to the dielectric materials by any coating or sputtering process. Instead, due to the triboelectric interaction between the two elements in motion, voltage is generated in a separate conductor by non-contact electrostatic induction. This allows a near field remote sensing using triboelectric/electrostatic coupling. By applying the mentioned sensing technique, an Orbicularis Oculi muscle motion sensor has been developed to monitor voluntary and involuntary eye blinks. The new transducer is integrated into a portable HMI for hands-free computer cursor control to assist people with mobility impairment. The conceived device was also tested in other applications as hands-free remote car and drone control, and for monitoring driving behaviour. Additionally, a PDMS-based eyelid motion sensor has been tested to feature other virtues of the NEDTS when sensing unconventional motion dynamics.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104675
Number of pages12
JournalNano Energy
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2020


  • Disabled-people aid
  • Eye motion
  • Hands-free computer control
  • Triboelectric sensor
  • Wearable HMI

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