Researchers from Purdue University, the University of Michigan and the Huazhong University of Science and Technology have used a technique called "laser shock imprinting" to permanently stress graphene into having a band gap, which could mean it would be possible to use it in various electronic components.
The researchers used a laser to create shock wave impulses that penetrated an underlying sheet of graphene. The laser shock stretches the graphene onto a permanent, trench-like mold. This caused the widening of band gap in graphene to a record 2.1 electronvolts. Previously, scientists achieved 0.5 electronvolts, barely reaching the benchmark to make graphene a semiconductor like silicon.