Just when we thought it couldn’t get any better than graphene, researchers at Rice University have published findings that describe the properties of carbyne, a “supermaterial” that is stronger than any other material chemists have analyzed. While graphene is 100 times stronger than steel of the same thickness, carbyne is stronger still.
I’m starting to think graphene may very well be the greatest thing ever to emerge from a laboratory. The latest in a long line of advancements: researchers at Nanyang Technological University have developed a graphene image sensor that can detect broad spectrum light and allow cameras to take clear photos even in low light.
More evidence that playing with graphene makes everything a little bit more awesome: Researchers looking into how diamond and graphene would interact at high temperatures wound up etching the diamond by trapping water heated to its supercritical phase next to the diamond’s surface.
To paraphrase a certain movie, let me say just one word: Graphene. This material has been embraced by scientists around the world who have been finding more and more potential uses for it. For those not in the know, graphene is basically made from ultra-thin slices of graphite. The material is stronger than steel and is a thermal and electric conductor.
Graphene does not just have one application. It is not even one material. It is a huge range of materials. A good comparison would be to how plastics are used. –Professor Andre Geim, co-holder of the Nobel Prize in physics for his work with graphene at Manchester University.
The particular usage of graphene we’re looking at today is to create flexible and highly conductive electrochemical capacitors. A team comprised of researchers from the University of California, Los Angeles and Cairo University have published a method of using laser-engraved graphene to create the capacitors in Science. Continue reading
Chalk this one up as yet another cool thing you can do with graphene: you can distill alcohol with it.
We already knew that the strong, transparent material could conduct electricity and heat; you can add “superpermeable with respect to water” to the list, as well.
A research team at Manchester University has created a membrane made of graphene oxide that allows water to evaporate through it, while blocking other molecules. The researchers (including Andrei Geim, who shared the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2010 for discovering graphene) sealed a metal container with the film, which blocked air or other gases from escaping. Continue reading