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The GRAPHENE mega thread - because it's technology you need to know about!

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posted on Dec, 31 2011 @ 02:15 PM
So what is graphene?

According to scientists graphene is the strongest material ever measured!

“It would take an elephant, balanced on a pencil to break through a sheet of graphene the thickness of cling film.”
said Columbia University Engineering Professor James Hone; continuing, "Our research establishes graphene as the strongest material ever measured, some 200 times stronger than structural steel."
(emphasis added) Source: Scientific American online

A graphene sheet is only one atom thick, so it takes 3 million sheets on top of each other to be the thickness of one millimeter!
It is so strong because it is made of Carbon atoms double-bonded together in a lattice.

Due to graphene's nature, it can comfortably stretch 20% of it's length/width. It can also conduct electricity better than copper wire! oh ya... and it's invisible! (see through) but scientists are discovering some very weird things about this wonder sheet!

Before we get into the anomalies and serious science let's take a look at...

What is graphene used for?

So we have the strongest material ever measured, 300,000 times thinner than the average human hair, it's see-through, and conducts electricity.... what would you make?

Some things created so far are a transistor and Integrated Circuit, by IBM scientists/Engineers
(discussed in ATS thread: First Graphene-Based Integrated Circuit Is a Major Step Toward Graphene Computer Chips, by JacKatMtn)

A company called Nanotrons has been working with nanotech since 2009 and has created "Conductive nanopaint" that is a spray on ultra-thin conductor of electricity as well as many other applications for graphene:
Applications (from Nanotrons website)
Protective Structural Materials (as Nanofillers and Nanocomposites)
Fuel (Cryogenic) Tanks
EM Shielding
Blast mitigation
Ballistic/fragment protection
Engine and turbine components
Protective Elastomer components
Transparent Conductive Film
Organic Photovoltaic cells
Organic light emitting diodes
Sensors & Catalysts
Liquid Crystal Displays
Conductive films
Energy Storage and Electric Devices
Li-ion batteries
Integrated circuits
Electrochromic devices
Field-effect transistors
E-papers & Conductive inks
Anti-microbial, Chemical, & Thermal
Anti-bacterial paper
Air & water purification
Chemical and explosive detecting sensors
Thermal management and interfacial materials
Microbial detection and diagnosis devices

ACS Material is also working extensively with graphene.
ACS Material's graphene nanoplatelets can be used to increase tensil strength of basic materials, improve "stiffness, corrosion resistance, abrasion resistance and anti-static electricity and lubricant properties."

so companies are already working with this product some of us have never heard of! Graphene alone could be responsible for major changes in the way we live our lives!

Science and Anomalies of Graphene

... now wait a minute... I thought you said it was clear!

This is a picture of "graphene paper" from the University of Sydney - it is carbon grey, yes?
(discussed in ATS thread New Graphene material is Paper-Thin &10 Times Stronger Than Steel (amazing) by Anon72)

Scientists are discovering some VERY WEIRD things about graphene! It seems to be laden with hidden anomalies and characteristics we couldn't have predicted. I can't seem to find the source but I've read that under various electrical fields graphene either reflects light or takes it in... meaning it can be a mirror or an invisible sheet depending on how we treat it.


Graphene seems to just be a sheet of double-bonded carbon atoms and I guess we'd expect it would just be a strong sheet of non-reactive atoms... but it's not.
We've worked with materials made of only carbon atoms before without such anomalies:

In 1947 graphene (not by that name) was postulated but expected to be impossible to create.
in 1985 something called "Bucky balls" (or Buckminsterfullerenes ) were created; they are a sphere of Carbon atoms double-bonded together. (see pic below)
Shortly after we created bucky tubes, or Carbon nanotubes, that were strong enough to hold a satelite in orbit and smaller than a human hair.

In 2004 Andre Geim and Konstantin Novoselov and their teams demonstrated that single layers of graphene could be isolated, resulting in the award of the Nobel Prize for Physics in 2010!


Now that we've been working with graphene across the globe for a few years now we're finding a lot of anomalies, such as this one described in ATS thread Graphene Bubbles have Bizarre magnetic properties, by Gentill Abdulla (source: Science Daily)
The bizarre magnetic affects include rapid vibration of the Carbon atoms that could speculatively be used in many applications such as particle accelerators, scanning devices, and possibly even levitation!

also, one final link and the story that prompted this thread...
Graphene Gives Protection from Intense Laser Pulses

Scientists at the National University of Singapore (NUS) , DSO National Laboratories and University of Cambridge have jointly announced a new world record in broadband non-linear optical absorption behavior using single-sheet graphene dispersions in a variety of heavy-atom solvents and film matrices.

(emphasis added)


Could it be that graphene changes our vary existence!??
Imagine graphene ultra-light floating vehicles...
nano- size computer chips making our Cloud technology worldwide...
Medical devices that see inside you, and change things, at the atomic level...

As with any technology it can be used for good things and more nefarious things but graphene is surely something that will affect our lives in many ways in the very near future!

Additional resources:
Doc Brown's Nanochemistry; From fullerenes & bucky balls to carbon nanotubes

Wikipedia: Graphene

Wikipedia: Allotropes of Carbon

edit on 31-12-2011 by Thermo Klein because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 31 2011 @ 02:17 PM
Potential applications, from Wikipedia / Graphene / Potential applications

Single-molecule gas detection

Graphene nanoribbons

Graphene transistors

Graphene optical modulators

Integrated circuits

Electrochromic devices

Transparent conducting electrodes

Reference material for characterizing electroconductive and transparent materials

Solar cells


Graphene biodevices


Tons more info on Wikipedia! This really is an exciting, and Nobel-worthy, discovery!

edit on 31-12-2011 by Thermo Klein because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 31 2011 @ 02:42 PM
I remember hearing of this a few years back, most likely as you stated with graphene edging technology to processors. They were saying that in running tests they believed they would be able to jump from our average 3.6ghz processor in computers now to anywhere around 500ghz even to 1000ghz. Supposedly that was getting pretty close to replicating an artificial brain power in a processor. After that I never heard of it again and was kinda disappointed. But as will all things and technology if the government isnt using it, the technology will be wiped from the face of the earth, and if it's actually released, then the military is done using it and has moved onto more updated materials.

posted on Dec, 31 2011 @ 02:43 PM
reply to post by Thermo Klein

Sounds like some revolutionary material, but I thought it has been around for a few years. I figured it was another innovation that would genuinely change the game, but because it steps on the toes of competing industries, it would be shelved with all the other wonderful innovations that could take us forward.
This stuff could make for lighter Haz Mat, firemen and astronaut uniforms too maybe, although most descriptions seem to describe it as stiff, couldn't it be flexible too?
I wonder how this material would fare in space? Seems impervious to everything, and conductive too. I also wonder what a sq foot would cost?

It has been predicted that graphene nanoplatelets can be produced at $5 per pound. If such costs could be achieved it will provide major disruption in the nanocomposites marketplace.

Although 3,000 related research papers and over 400 patent applications related to the technology were filed in 2010, mass commercialization of graphene may still be years away due to a number of product and process obstacles.

1) cost of development, which will likely decrease as process innovations reduce variability in production and as throughput rises.
2) technological complication that pertains to the high electrical conductivity of the material. Scientists must identify a way to contain the charge in graphene sheets so that digital signals can be processed properly.
3) Difficulties relating to the health and safety of nanotechnology in general, though graphene retains some safety advantages over its close cousin, carbon nanotubes.


ETA: some more info:

From Dec 2011

edit on 31-12-2011 by speculativeoptimist because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 31 2011 @ 03:15 PM
reply to post by speculativeoptimist

good point about competing industries... would be interesting to see who's behind some of these nano- production compaines.

I came across the two I listed in the thread but I imagine there are more - might just be a nice investment opportunity! Follow the Bilderberg money

posted on Dec, 31 2011 @ 03:22 PM
reply to post by Thermo Klein

Seems this co owns the bulk of it, but I could not find any info about it's leading investors.
Now what could one do with a few grams of graphene nano-powder on a personal level, since it is now available for just 99.00?

Some more interesting stuff about Graphene, much of what is covered in your OP.
10 Strangest Facts About Graphene
edit on 31-12-2011 by speculativeoptimist because: cuzican

posted on Dec, 31 2011 @ 05:30 PM
In keeping with this thread:

UK invests in graphene technology

posted on Dec, 31 2011 @ 06:01 PM
Graphene printed by ink-jet printer ups mobility!

Wow.... imagine if anyone with a few hundred dollars USD can make invisible sheets of material like this!

EE Times

posted on Dec, 31 2011 @ 06:11 PM
This stuff very easy, simple and cheap to make

Dr Narayan Hosmane from Northern Illinois University will tell us how he almost by accident produced high-yields of graphene instead of the expected single-wall carbon nanotubes by using the Dry-Ice Method. Synthetic methodologies for producing graphene on large quantities will be the topic of his presentation.

posted on Dec, 31 2011 @ 06:28 PM
... Introducing Graphene Conference 2012!

For a nice who's who in the research community

Graphene Conference 2012

I recognize I'm adding a lot to this thread without response but it is a "mega thread" after all. There are A LOT of groups, companies, RnD bids, Universities, etc working on this right now! I had no idea, before researching for this thread, that graphene use was so widespread

posted on Dec, 31 2011 @ 06:38 PM
This company is working with research students at a small university creating graphene from Carbon Dioxide!

If this stuff is so easy to make WHY did it take from 1985 (Buckminsterfullerene) until after 2000 to make it??

North Bay Business Journal

SAN RAFAEL — Dominican University in San Rafael has joined forces with a Marin company producing graphene from carbon dioxide, allowing students to conduct research commonly reserved for large universities and bolstering the company’s efforts to refine manufacturing of the promising material.

The partnership with the company, Graphene Technologies, represents an increasing trend among universities, enhancing the real-world experience of students without adding expenses like hiring additional instructors, said Dr. Sibdas Ghosh, chair of the department of Natural Science and Mathematics at Dominican.

“Other universities will see this as a viable model,” Dr. Ghosh, chair since 2001, said. “They (Graphene Technologies) have the technology — we have the space and the students.”

For Graphene Technologies, which moved much of its analysis and processing of the material to Dominican in June, the help of intern researchers has already resulted in discoveries that have significantly improved the manufacturing process. The goal, said company CEO and co-founder Jon Myers, is to be able to produce one ton of the material per year by the end of 2012.

Graphene Technologies

Also mentioned in the article - right now it would take a few days to make 50 grams... people are asking for 5 tons!

edit on 31-12-2011 by Thermo Klein because: added company link

posted on Dec, 31 2011 @ 06:50 PM
This stuff is awesome, I've never heard of it! Apparently it's not new, but this:

The hexagonal lattice has the longest "mean free path" of any known material — of the order of microns. This is the distance an electron can travel freely without bumping into anything, or having its path disrupted by scattering; the things that induce resistance. When the mean free path is longer than the dimensions of the material, you get ballistic transport. In graphene, the mean free path is of the order of 65 microns — long enough that electronic components could be made that would operate at ambient temperatures with virtually no resistance. This is similar to superconductivity, but at room temperature.

4, 5 & 6. Best at electricity And in case that doesn't impress you, Manchester University's Dr Leonid Ponomarenko points out that graphene also has "the highest current density (a million times that of copper) at room temperature; the highest intrinsic mobility (100 times more than in silicon); and conducts electricity in the limit of no electrons". Which means it can carry more electricity more efficiency, faster and with more precision than any other material.

This seems to say that the stuff is a room temperature superconductor. This is paradigm shattering, and opens the door to free energy and maybe even anti gravity. But for six years so far no one has touched this aspect of it? or am I confused here? This is all new to me.

posted on Dec, 31 2011 @ 07:15 PM
reply to post by CaptChaos

I imagine things like you mention are being explored somewhere. I felt that the highly vibrational aspect of the carbon atoms could lead to super-conduction or levitation, but I didn't find anything on it.

posted on Dec, 31 2011 @ 07:20 PM
reply to post by Thermo Klein

It is really fascinating, but in the dark corners of my mind, a scene from the movie "The Cube" keeps on milling in my mind, in which a trap made from some very thin strands, but very strong, cuts the victims into little pieces .....

If I can only shake that image from my mind, I'll be able to start speculating on all the possibilities.

posted on Dec, 31 2011 @ 07:21 PM
I'm really excited to see this being explored in so many ways by so many diverse groups! There is no way The Powers That Be, oil cartels, ect could shut down every university and start-up working on this!

Check out this one!

Student uses graphene to come up with a way to store Hydrogen for vehicle use.

Helping Hydrogen: Student Inventor Tackles Challenge of Hydrogen Storage

Determined to play a key role in solving global dependency on fossil fuels, Javad Rafiee, a doctoral student in the Department of Mechanical, Aerospace, and Nuclear Engineering at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, has developed a new method for storing hydrogen at room temperature.

Rafiee has created a novel form of engineered graphene that exhibits hydrogen storing capacity far exceeding any other known material. For this innovation, which brings the world a step closer to realizing the widespread adoption of clean, abundant hydrogen as a fuel for transportation vehicles, Rafiee is the winner of the 2010 $30,000 Lemelson-MIT Rensselaer Student Prize. He is among the four 2010 $30,000 Lemelson-MIT Collegiate Student Prize winners announced today.


posted on Dec, 31 2011 @ 07:26 PM
Alright, this is my last one

Time to celebrate New Year's!!

but first...

from NextBigFuture: Graphene SME Commercialization Strategies: A Cross-Country Comparison (28 pages, April 2011)

Although 3,000 related research papers and over 400 patent applications related to the technology were filed in 2010, mass commercialization of graphene may still be years away due to a number of product and process obstacles.

1) cost of development, which will likely decrease as process innovations reduce variability in production and as throughput rises.
2) technological complication that pertains to the high electrical conductivity of the material. Scientists must identify a way to contain the charge in graphene sheets so that digital signals can be processed properly.
3) Difficulties relating to the health and safety of nanotechnology in general, though graphene retains some safety advantages over its close cousin, carbon nanotubes.

A number of multinationals are active in graphene research and development (e.g. Intel and IBM in computing, Dow Chemicals and BASF as suppliers of basic graphene material, and Samsung in consumer electronics).

posted on Dec, 31 2011 @ 08:58 PM
Will it stop a bullet

posted on Dec, 31 2011 @ 09:02 PM
I am excited about Graphene for batteries and super capacitors, it may make electric cars as practical as gas powered cars. Long range and fast charging.

posted on Dec, 31 2011 @ 09:18 PM
Incredible thread Thermo Klein. Really so incredible it cannot be expressed in one post; the successive post of yours make this an even better gem & one of the most important threads on ATS imo.

Potentially another turning point in human history.

posted on Dec, 31 2011 @ 10:15 PM
This material should have a lot of practical applications, what I'm looking forward to most is use for cables in a space elevator or even use is railguns for cargo launch to LEO.

Also a little shout of to the University of Manchester where the two Noble Lauretes work, I live work and continue to study in Manchester and at the University, these guys are a great boon to the city and university, hope they make many more advances with Graphene.

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