What is graphene?

Graphene is a material made of carbon atoms that are bonded together in a repeating pattern of hexagons. Graphene is so thin that it is considered two dimensional. Graphene's flat honeycomb pattern gives it many extraordinary characteristics, such as being the strongest material in the world, as well as one of the lightest, most conductive and transparent. Graphene has endless potential applications, in almost every industry (like electronics, medicine, aviation and much more).

An ideal graphene sheet image

The single layers of carbon atoms provide the basis for many other materials. Graphite, like the substance found in pencil lead, is formed by stacked graphene. Carbon nanotubes are made of rolled graphene and are used in many emerging applications from sports gear to biomedicine.

What is graphene oxide?

As graphene is expensive and relatively hard to produce, great efforts are made to find effective yet inexpensive ways to make and use graphene derivatives or related materials. Graphene oxide (GO) is one of those materials - it is a single-atomic layered material, made by the powerful oxidation of graphite, which is cheap and abundant. Graphene oxide is an oxidized form of graphene, laced with oxygen-containing groups. It is considered easy to process since it is dispersible in water (and other solvents), and it can even be used to make graphene. Graphene oxide is not a good conductor, but processes exist to augment its properties. It is commonly sold in powder form, dispersed, or as a coating on substrates.

Graphene Oxide structure

Graphene oxide is synthesized using four basic methods: Staudenmaier, Hofmann, Brodie and Hummers. Many variations of these methods exist, with improvements constantly being explored to achieve better results and cheaper processes. The effectiveness of an oxidation process is often evaluated by the carbon/oxygen ratios of the graphene oxide.

Graphene oxide uses

Graphene Oxide films can be deposited on essentially any substrate, and later converted into a conductor. This is why GO is especially fit for use in the production of transparent conductive films, like the ones used for flexible electronics, solar cells, chemical sensors and more. GO is even studied as a tin-oxide (ITO) replacement in batteries and touch screens.

Graphene Oxide has a high surface area, and so it can be fit for use as electrode material for batteries, capacitors and solar cells. Graphene Oxide is cheaper and easier to manufacture than graphene, and so may enter mass production and use sooner.

GO can easily be mixed with different polymers and other materials, and enhance properties of composite materials like tensile strength, elasticity, conductivity and more. In solid form, Graphene Oxide flakes attach one to another to form thin and stable flat structures that can be folded, wrinkled, and stretched. Such Graphene Oxide structures can be used for applications like hydrogen storage, ion conductors and nanofiltration membranes.

Graphene oxide is fluorescent, which makes it especially appropriate for various medical applications. bio-sensing and disease detection, drug-carriers and antibacterial materials are just some of the possibilities GO holds for the biomedical field.

Buy Graphene Oxide

Graphene oxide is relatively affordable and easy to find, with many companies that sell it. It does, however, get confusing since different companies offer products that vary in quality, price, form and more - making the choice of a specific product challenging. If you are interested in buying GO, contact Graphene-Info for advisement on the right GO for your exact needs!

Further reading

Latest Graphene Batteries news

Manchester team creates graphene oxide membranes that can filter organic solvents

Nov 15, 2017

Researchers at the National Graphene Institute and School of Chemical Engineering and Analytical Science at The University of Manchester have developed an ultra-thin membrane using graphene-oxide sheets, that were assembled in a way that they were able to completely remove various organic dyes, dissolved in methanol, which were as small as a nanometre. This is exciting as GO membranes were once thought to be permeable only to aqueous solutions, but the researchers developed a new form of graphene oxide membrane that can filter organic solvents.

Manchetser and NGI team created unique GO membranes image

In the newly developed ultrathin membranes, graphene-oxide sheets are assembled in such a way that pinholes formed during the assembly are interconnected by graphene nanochannels, which produces an atomic-scale sieve allowing the large flow of solvents through the membrane. When used to filter Cognac and whisky, the membrane permitted alcohol to pass through but trapped the larger molecules that gives the whisky its color. Professor Nair, which led the group, said that "the clear whisky smells similar to the original whisky but we are not allowed to drink it in the lab, however it was a funny Friday night experiment!”

Zenyatta Ventures to collaborate with Western University in a graphene-enhanced plastics project

Nov 10, 2017

Zenyatta Ventures has announced the commencement of a collaborative research project with Dr. Takashi Kuboki at Western University to develop an advanced plastic (polymer composite) using Zenyatta graphene (or graphene-oxide) derived from Albany high-purity graphite deposit.

Zenyatta sees a potential for such enhanced polymer composite materials to be attractive to the automotive, aerospace and construction industries that seek lightweight materials with added strength, electrical and thermal properties. This new project may expand Zenyatta's business opportunities as a graphene nanomaterial supplier for the polymer composite markets.

The Graphene Handbook

ERDC team develops a GO-based water treatment system

Oct 29, 2017

Researchers at the U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center (ERDC) are developing a water treatment system based on a mix of graphene oxide and a byproduct made from shrimp shells.

ERDC develops GO membranes for water treatment image

The ERDC team’s breakthrough was the ability to scale the membranes from the inch and a half diameter membranes other labs throughout the world are working on, to sheets stretching up to two feet long with the potential of making them as big as needed.

Graphene to increase efficiency of perovskite solar cells

Oct 19, 2017

Researchers from Italy’s University of Florence have found that graphene oxide could significantly improve the efficiency of perovskite solar cells. The researchers have shown how the introduction of graphene and graphene oxide doped with lithium atoms (GO-Li) into a perovskite-based cell may increase its conversion efficiency, as both the carrier recombination dynamics and the defect density of the perovskite are considerably improved.

The scientists used graphene doped mesoporous TiO2 (G+mTiO2) with the addition of a lithium-neutralized graphene oxide (GO-Li) interlayer as ETL. They found that the carrier collection efficiency is increased by about a factor two with respect to standard mTiO2.

CCGG announces pilot scale production of high quality graphene

Oct 12, 2017

China Carbon Graphite Group logoChina Carbon Graphite Group, a producer engaging in the research and development, production and sales of graphene and graphene oxide, recently announced a pilot scale production of high quality graphene and GO in a collaboration with Hunan University.

CCGG has collaborated with Hunan University on graphene research since 2012, and was able to previously produce graphene oxide in a multiple-step process. Now the Company can reportedly integrate multiple steps into a single process in a less than medium pilot scale.

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