Graphene-based device generates electricity from human motion

Researchers from Vanderbilt University have developed an ultra-thin, graphene-based device that can be placed in fabrics of clothing to generate electricity from human motion.

Being 1/5000th the thickness of a human hair, the device can sense even the slightest human movement. The research team commented that “compared to the other approaches designed to harvest energy from human motion, our method has two fundamental advantages. The materials are atomically thin and small enough to be impregnated into textiles without affecting the fabric's look or feel and it can extract energy from movements that are slower than 10 Hertz – 10 cycles per second – over the whole low-frequency window of movements corresponding to human motion.”

Manchester University team designs method to characterize nanoparticle dispersion in graphene-based nanocomposites

University of Manchester researchers, from the i-composite lab, have devised a method to characterize the dispersion of nanoparticles in polymer nanocomposites using non-contact infrared thermography mapping that measures the thermal diffusivity (α) of the graphene nanocomposite and relates α to a dispersion index.

Manchester U designs method to characterize dispersion of particles in composites image

The main advantage of the proposed method is its ability to evaluate dispersion over a large area at reduced effort and cost, in addition to measuring the thermal properties of the system. The actual resolution of this thermal mapping reaches 200μm per pixel, giving an accurate picture of graphene nanoplatelets (GNP) dispersion.

Archer Exploration joins Australian graphene research hub

Archer Exploration, an Australia-based company focused on developing the company's advanced graphite, magnesite and cobalt projects in South Australia, recently entered into an agreement with the Australian Research Council (ARC) to collaborate on the ARC Graphene Research Hub. The aim of the ARC Graphene Research Hub is to provide leading knowledge, innovative research and development for the commercialization of graphene research.

The main aim of Archer’s work is the development of scalable graphene production processes for the company’s numerous graphite deposits. The ARC Graphene Research Hub is funded by the Australian Government, through the Australian Research Council’s Industrial Transformation Research Hubs scheme. Under the agreement between Archer and the other ARC Graphene Research Hub participants, Archer will participate in many projects including: Development of a series of graphene based products to establish lab/pilot scale graphene production, development of processes for the scalable production of high quality graphene and the optimization of production rate, yield, quality, purity, environmental impact, cost and sustainability and more.

CrayoNano orders Veeco's MOCVD system for nanowire on graphene growth

Veeco Instruments, a U.S-based process equipment maker, recently announced that CrayoNano, a research company for ultraviolet short wavelength light emitting diodes (UV-C LEDs), has ordered the Propel Power Gallium Nitride (GaN) Metal Organic Chemical Vapor Deposition (MOCVD) System. CrayoNano will use the system to grow semiconductor nanowires on graphene for water disinfection, air purification, food processing and life science applications.

CrayoNano buys Veeco's equipment image

CrayoNano is a nanotechnology company specializing in developing optoelectronic devices based on semiconductor nanowires on graphene substrates. The Company originates from several years of research at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) in Trondheim. The Company aims to transform the UV LED marketwith a technology based on a unique method of growing nanowires on graphene.

Dotz Nano raises $1.5 million to commercialize graphene quantum dots

Dotz Nano, the Israel-based company established to commercialize a graphene quantum dot production process developed at Rice University's Tour Labs, has received firm commitments to raise $1.5 million via a placement of shares.

The placement was conducted to take advantage of cost sharing grant funding to access up to circa $2 million in grants over the next 12-18 months. The initial grant was awarded to Dotz by the U.S.-Israel Binational Research and Development (BIRD) Foundation. Additional grant funding is directed from the Office of the Chief Scientist of Israel and from the Ministry of Economy.

Zenyatta Ventures collaborates with Alliance Rubber to develop graphene-rubber applications

Zenyatta logoWe recently reported that U.S-based Alliance Rubber signed an agreement with University of Sussex to study how graphene could be used in rubber products. Now, Zenyatta Ventures and said Alliance Rubber and the University of Sussex have announced a collaboration program to develop enhanced rubber products.

Alliance manufactures 2,200 products and markets them in 55 countries. It is funding research at Sussex to develop enhanced new rubber products using graphene, focusing on rubber sensor products that will hold credit and debit cards to prevent hacking of information stored on the chip. The Alliance program will also focus on a rubber sensor product attached to food produce that changes color when the produce item reaches a set temperature or after a certain amount of time passes since harvest. This product can also act as a bar code on produce in grocery stores.

Graphene enables color changing electronic skin

Researchers from Tsinghua University in China have developed a graphene-based user-interactive electronic skin, capable of changing color. The team made use of flexible electronics made from graphene, in the form of a highly-sensitive resistive strain sensor, combined with a stretchable organic electrochromic device.

To obtain good performance with a simple process and reduced cost, they designed a structure to use graphene as both the highly sensitive strain-sensing element and the insensitive stretchable electrode of the electric current density (ECD) layer.

Researchers produce robust graphene-based catalyst to split water into hydrogen and oxygen

Scientists at Rice University and the University of Houston have developed a catalyst that can simplify the splitting of water into hydrogen and oxygen to produce clean energy. The electrolytic film is a three-layer structure of nickel, graphene and a compound of iron, manganese and phosphorus. The foamy nickel gives the film a large surface, the conductive graphene protects the nickel from degrading and the metal phosphide carries out the reaction.

Rice  team produces robust catalyst to split water into hydrogen, and oxygen image

The film was developed to overcome barriers that usually make a catalyst good for producing either oxygen or hydrogen, but not both simultaneously - as is often the case with regular metals. The team explained that normally, a hydrogen evolution reaction is done in acid and an oxygen evolution reaction is done in base. This work produced one material that is stable whether it's in an acidic or basic solution. In addition, the team used rather common materials in lieu of the usually-required platinum and other costly materials.

Zenyatta Ventures establishes European subsidiary ZEN-tech to handle graphene business

Zenyatta logoZenyatta Ventures, a Canadian graphite explorer, has formed a wholly owned European subsidiary company named ZEN-tech Materials to focus on the development and commercialization activities of graphene applications and the allocation of any associated intellectual property and worldwide licensing.

Zenyatta stated that the formation of ZEN-tech is a strategic move that will provide it with a way to capture value and advance graphene application development separate from the mineral development business. Zenyatta will continue to focus on advancing the Albany graphite deposit towards production and will supply highly crystalline, purified graphite to ZEN-tech, academics and end users.

Researchers demonstrate a chemical pathway to using graphene in electronics

Researchers from Utrecht University, TU Delft and the Aalto University in Finland have shown that electronic components can be incorporated in single graphene wires (nanoribbons) with atomic precision. The result is a working electronic device that could be used in graphene-based electronic switches with extremely fast operational speeds.

Chemical route to graphene electronics image

The researchers state that their solution to using graphene in electronics is atomically precise; By selecting certain precursor substances (molecules), the team can code the structure of the electrical circuit with extreme accuracy. The switch is based on the principle of graphene nanoribbons. Previous research has shown that the ribbon’s electronic characteristics are dependent on its atomic width. A ribbon that is five atoms wide is an ordinary electric wire with extremely good conduction characteristics, but adding two atoms makes the ribbon a semiconductor. “We are now able to seamlessly integrate a five-atom wide ribbon together with one that is seven atoms wide. That gives you a metal-semiconductor junction, which works as a diode”, according to the team.