A Better, Faster, and Safer Graphene Production Method

Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU) along with the University Of Western Australia (UWA), has developed a new method of producing graphene. This production process may further enhance graphene’s viability for energy storage.

Compared to current manufacturing processes, this new production method has been described as being able to synthesize higher quality graphene in a much faster time frame. Even more astounding is the claim that this method is scalable to a commercial level.

One of the benefits of this new production technology is there is a decreased need for the use of toxic chemicals in the production process.

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3D White Graphene Will Cool Electronics Better

White Graphene Electronics CoolingTwo Rice University researchers, Rouzbeh Shahsavari and Navid Sakhavand have submitted initial theoretical data on how 3D boron nitride (white graphene) can be utilized to regulate heat flow in small electronics.

The ultimate goal of their research is to improve cooling and airflow of heat in smaller electronic devises.

Shahsavari states, “Typically in all electronics, it is highly desired to get heat out of the system as quickly and efficiently as possible,” he further elaborated on why an improvement on current and old cooling methods is required, “when you have layered materials on a substrate … heat moves very quickly in one direction, along a conductive plane, but not so good from layer to layer.” 

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Can Graphene Make the World’s Water Clean?

Graphene water filter

In the 2015 World Economic Forum’s Global Risks Report survey participants ranked Water Crises as the biggest of all risks, higher than Weapons of Mass Destruction, Interstate Conflict and the Spread of Infectious Diseases (pandemics). Our dependence on the availability of fresh water is well documented, and the United Nations World Water Development Report 2015 highlights a 40% global shortfall between forecast water demand and available supply within the next fifteen years. Agriculture accounts for much of the demand, up to 90% in most of the world’s least-developed countries, and there is a clear relationship between water availability, health, food production and the potential for civil unrest or interstate conflict.

The looming crisis is not limited to water for drinking or agriculture. Heavy metals from urban pollution are finding their way into the aquatic ecosystem, as are drug residues and nitrates from fertilizer use that can result in massive algal blooms. To date, there has been little to stop this accretion of pollutants and in closed systems such as lakes these pollutants are being concentrated with unknown long term effects.

While current solutions such as reverse osmosis exist, and are widely used in the water desalination of seawater, the water they produce is expensive. This is because high pressures are required to force the waster through a membrane and maintaining this pressure requires around 2kWh for every cubic meter of water. While this is less of an issue for countries with cheap energy, it puts the technology beyond the reach of most of the world’s population.

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Large- Scale Graphene Production vs. Useful Production

A research team at Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) claim to have created continuous sheets of graphene (1 layer thick) using the CVD process. They also claim to have been able to produce graphene fibers. You can read the research article here.

Though this type of production of graphene is actually not as rare as one might think. The real breakthroughs that graphene investors need to pay attention to is when useful graphene is created in a cost effective manner.

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Startup Graphene and Nano Tech Company – Xefro Graphene Based Heat

U.K. startup graphene company Xefro has developed a graphene-based heating system that could potentially cut down on your energy costs by almost 70%, according to IEEE Spectrum. Xefro claims that the gRAD product is the only graphene based heating element in the industry. The benefits of this gRAD heating element are its ability to switch on and off faster than conventional elements, along with is targeted infrared heating, which limits dangerous heat and wasted energy.

The gRAD graphene heating element appears to be a wall mounted sheet of carbon fiber with a graphene printed infrared element and vertical tube array. Finishes come in carbon fiber or gloss. The graphene heating element projects directed infrared heat into the room.

Xefro Graphene Company Snapshot

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