One: Graphene is only one atom thick! This makes it mathematically two dimensional and one of the thinnest materials imaginable. It’s made of carbon, and, at a molecular level, its hexagon lattice structure looks just like chicken wire.
Two. It’s made of a carbon structure called graphite—the very same ‘lead’ that’s was in your grade school pencil. Professor Andre Geim and Dr. Kostya Novoselov from the University of Manchester discovered it back in 2004 while checking out graphite’s potential as a transistor. They went on to win a Nobel Prize in 2010 for their exciting discovery!
Three. Professor Geim and Dr. Novoselov used sticky tape to pull a single layer of graphite free—a technique known as mechanical exfoliation—and discovered Graphene. They utilized an acetone bath, silicon, and an optical microscope to prove their discovery.
Four. Due to this new discovery, it has been very expensive to manufacture. Now enter Graphene America - who's proprietary high volume production has brought Graphene affordable for small and large customers.
Five. Graphene stretches up to 25% of its length!—and extraordinarily stiff. In fact, it’s the most ridged, or hardest, a material is known to us: it’s even harder than diamonds!
Six. It might be the thinnest material ever discovered at just one atom thick, it’s still visible, says Professor James Tour of Rice University, Texas. Lay a sheet of graphene against a sheet of white paper and you’ll see it. That means that you can see a single layer of atoms with your bare eyes—how’s that for a Super Material?
Seven. It’s fantastically good at electricity—graphene’s current density is a million times greater than copper’s, and its intrinsic mobility is a hundred times greater than that of silicon. Electrons move through graphene with pretty much no resistance and apparently without mass. This means that graphene can carry electricity more efficiently, precisely, and faster than any other material. It might be possible to use it to make batteries that have ten times as much electrical retention capacity as anything else we’ve got.
Eight. Graphene also conducts heat better than any other known material, beating diamond (again!) in thermal conductivity. And, speaking of heat and cold: graphene shrinks when it is warmed and it expands when it is cooled. Weird. This makes it the only known example of what scientists call an electrically conductive membrane.
Nine. It’s the most impermeable material yet to be discovered. Helium atoms can’t even get through graphene. This means it’s great as a gas detector. It’s also got potential as a rather nifty desalination tool, according to MIT researchers; and Science magazine reports that some inventive researchers have even used it to distill vodka at room temperature. This means that it could be very handy for biofuel production—and for party tricks…
Ten. Graphene will make high-speed quantum physics that the scientists at CERN can’t imagine.
Graphene’s so amazing in so many different ways it’s almost as if it’s been beamed from the future. We’re super excited about the possibilities.
If you are just as excited and are looking to learn more, please contact us today.