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RS Mines plans to go public, updates on graphene projects

Nov 24, 2015

RS Mines logoIn June 2014, we reported that Bora Bora Resources agreed to acquire up to 40% in Sri Lanka's RS Mines - a graphite miner and graphene oxide producer. Today RS Mines told us that that agreement was terminated (by RS Mines).

RS Mines plans to list on the Australian Stock Exchange directly (via a new company called Global Graphene Technologies). The listing will facilitate the development of the graphite resource (the Queen's Mine) in Sri Lanka - and also to initiate several graphene and graphite-related subsidiaries - mainly in the fields of energy storage devices and GO production.

Origami-inspired GO sheets move in response to light and heat

Nov 11, 2015

Scientists at Donghua University in China have found a way to cause tiny (0.8 to 6 centimeter) graphene oxide-based objects to move in specific ways using heat and infrared light. The work was inspired by origami, an art form based on folding paper.

In this work, traditional paper was replaced with two types of graphene sheets infused with hydrogen and oxygen compounds, resulting in graphene oxide and graphene oxide-polydopamine. The former does not react to water but the second does. To create origami type structures, the team infused the latter with water molecules than bonded the two types of sheets together—when heat or light was applied to the second type, it would cause the water molecules to be released, making the paper shrink slightly, which in turn would exert a force that would pull against the second type of sheet. This allowed for the creation of hinges or joints which could be employed on command, which made the objects programmable in a sense.

A GO-enhanced sensor can detect NO2 level in the atmosphere

Nov 02, 2015

A team of researchers from the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) has developed a graphene oxides-based sensor that can detect nitrogen dioxide (NO2) in the atmosphere. The sensor can detect as little as a single NO2 molecule among millions of other molecules and it works even at room temperatures, unlike other common nitrogen sensors that are known to be high temperature devices. 

For the development of this sensor, the team used fibre bragg grating, an optical fibre similar to the ones used for communication purposes. However, it can reflect one particular wavelength of light and transmit others. The IISc team covered the fibre bragg grating with an ultra thin layer of reduced graphene oxide and developed the sensor. by modifying the optical fibre, the scientists were able to use it in different applications like gas sensing and bio-sensing.

Graphene oxide can be used to remove polluting drugs from wastewater

Oct 31, 2015

A team of scientists from the Aristotle University, Greece, have shown that graphene can be used to remove drugs that current wastewater treatment techniques cannot seem to handle. Various pharmaceuticals find its way into wastewater and even reach drinking water, and can potentially have negative affects on people, wildlife and the environment.

Using graphene oxide (GO) as an adsorbent material the researchers were able to show that two common drugs (atenolol and propranolol, betablockers that have been established as hard to remove) could be removed effectively. The GO could also be recycled and re-used, to keep costs down. 

Cobalt and rGO combine to create a promising anode for lithium-ion batteries

Oct 29, 2015

A team of researchers at the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research presents a promising anode material for lithium-ion batteries, by incorporating unique 3D cobalt oxide microstructures into a reduced graphene oxide composite

Cobalt and graphene for battery electrodes image

Metal oxides present a potential alternative to conventional graphite anodes and Li alloys. Cobalt oxide (CoO) has particularly promising properties, namely a high specific capacity and excellent cycling stability against lithium. However, particle aggregation and volume expansion have thus far restricted its candidacy as an appropriate anode material. Merging CoO into a graphene hydrogel, which acts as a mechanically stable 3D support, the researchers eliminate the problem of volume expansion. Furthermore, the completely interconnected hybrid material presents improved conductivity.

An innovative process enables unprecedented control over graphene oxide's electrical properties

Oct 15, 2015

Researchers at Binghamton University have demonstrated an eco-friendly process that enables unprecedented spatial control over the electrical properties of graphene oxide, which is said to have the potential to revolutionize flexible electronics, solar cells and biomedical instruments.

By using the probe of an atomic force microscope to trigger a local chemical reaction, the scientists showed that electrically conductive features as small as 4 nanometers can be patterned into individual graphene oxide sheets. This approach makes it possible to draw nanoscale electrically-conductive features in atomically-thin insulating sheets with the highest spatial control reported so far, and unlike standard methods for manipulating the properties of graphene oxide, the process can be implemented under ambient conditions and is environmentally-benign, making it a promising step towards the practical integration of graphene oxide into future technologies.

Graphene oxide lens to revolutionize various next-gen devices

Sep 23, 2015

Researchers at Swinburne University of Technology, collaborating with Monash University, have developed an ultrathin, flat, lightweight graphene oxide optical lens with extraordinary flexibility, that enables potential applications in on-chip nanophotonics and improves the conversion process of solar cells. It might also open up new possibilities in areas like non-invasive 3D biomedical imaging, aerospace photonics, micromachines and more. 

Graphene oxide lens for next-gen devices image

Recent developments in nano-optics and on-chip photonic systems have increased the demand for ultrathin flat lenses with 3D subwavelength focusing capability (the ability to see details of an object smaller than 200 nanometres). A number of ultrathin flat lens concepts have been developed, but their real-life application is limited due to their complex design, narrow operational bandwidth and time consuming manufacturing processes. This lens, however, has a 3D subwavelength capability that is 30 times more efficient, able to tightly focus broadband light from the visible to the near infrared, and offers a simple and low-cost manufacturing method.