Zenyatta to collaborate with German Aerospace Center on graphene composites

Zenyatta Ventures has announced that it will be commencing a new research collaboration with the University of British Columbia (UBC)-Okanagan Campus and the Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt (“DLR”, the German Aerospace Center) to investigate the potential use of Albany Graphite for graphene and graphene oxide in new composite materials.

Dr. Lukas Bichler, who will be leading the composite development project, said: “UBC researchers have established a partnership with DLR, which seeks to provide unique educational and research opportunities for future engineers. Also, the partners bring together Canadian and European industry partners and allow effective technology transfer and rapid innovation”.

Graphene Flagship team shows the potential of graphene-enhanced photonics

Researchers affiliated with the Graphene Flagship have shown that integrated graphene-based photonic devices offer a unique solution for the next generation of optical communications. Researchers in the initiative have demonstrated how properties of graphene enable ultra-wide bandwidth communications coupled with low power consumption to radically change the way data is transmitted across the optical communications systems. This could make graphene-integrated devices the key ingredient in the evolution of 5G, the Internet-of-Things (IoT), and Industry 4.0.

Process flow of a SLG photonics integrated device image

"As conventional semiconductor technologies are approaching their physical limitations we need to explore entirely new technologies to realize our most ambitious visions of a future networked global society," explains Wolfgang Templ, Department Head of Transceiver Research at Nokia Bell Labs in Germany, which is a Graphene Flagship partner. "Graphene promises a significant step in performance of key components for optical and radio communications beyond the performance limits of today's conventional semiconductor-based component technologies." Paola Galli, Nokia IP and Optical networks Member of Technical Staff, agrees: "Graphene photonics offer a combination of advantages to become the game changer. We need to explore new materials to go beyond the limits of current technologies and meet the capacity needs of future networks."

Haydale receives funding to develop graphene-enhanced composite tooling and automotive body panels

Haydale has announced that it has been awarded a research and development grant from the Niche Vehicle Network to develop graphene-enhanced composite tooling and graphene-enhanced automotive body panels. Haydale is looking to reduce cycle times compared to existing tooling methods, as well as reduce weight and increase performance of component material.

A grant of £249,600, of which Haydale will receive £120,000, has been awarded to the consortium that Haydale leads, joined by Briggs Automotive Company (BAC) and Pentaxia. BAC is a British manufacturer of the Mono, the world's only road-legal, single seat super car. Pentaxia is a specialist in tooling design, machining (jigs & fixtures), and composite production.

Chinese materials company opens new graphene plant in Heilongjiang

Chinese coke company Baotailong New Materials has completed construction of a USD$9.6 million graphene production project in the north of the country and has launched trial-stage operations.

Baotailong completed all work on the facility located in its hometown of Qitaihe in northern Heilongjiang province at the end of last month, the firm said in a statement. The plant boasts an annual graphene output of 50 tons.

Researchers develop a technique to fabricate large squares of graphene riddled with controlled holes

Researchers at MIT have found a way to directly “pinprick” microscopic holes into graphene as the material is grown in the lab. Using this technique, they have fabricated relatively large sheets of graphene (roughly the size of a postage stamp), with pores that could make filtering certain molecules out of solutions vastly more efficient.

Holes would typically be considered unwanted defects, but the MIT team has found that certain defects in graphene can be an advantage in fields such as dialysis. Typically, much thicker polymer membranes are used in laboratories to filter out specific molecules from solution, such as proteins, amino acids, chemicals, and salts. If it could be tailored with selectively-sized pores that let through certain molecules but not others, graphene could substantially improve separation membrane technology.

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Ford to release graphene-enhanced cars by the end of 2018

Automotive giant Ford has announced that it will become the first automaker to use graphene parts in its vehicles, starting with the Mustang and F-150 by the end of 2018.

Ford F-150 image

Ford acknowledges the difficulties of graphene manufacturing and use, but in partnership with Eagle Industries and XG Sciences, it has determined a way to make use of graphene reinforcement in certain components to strengthen and lighten them, as well as reduce noise. Since 2014, Ford and its partners have tested graphene-reinforced foam covers for noisy components such as the fuel rail, pumps, and belt-driven pulleys or chain-driven gears on the front of engines. The graphene is mixed with foam constituents, and the resulting parts are said to be 17% quieter, 20% stronger, and 30% more heat-resistant.