A new project was recently launched under the name of GraphCAT, an initiative to create an ecosystem of research centers focused in the study of graphene. The project received funding from the Government of Catalonia and the European Union.

The ultimate vision of the GraphCAT Community is to establish Catalonia as an international hub for graphene research, development and innovation, with multiple local industries deriving strong competitive advantage in the global marketplace through the integration of proprietary graphene technologies into their products and services.

GraphCAT will set out to achieve this by cultivating a strong community of international graphene researchers, practitioners and businesses, bringing their combined expertise to the development of cutting-edge graphene technologies for and by Catalan industry. It will also provide support for the transfer of technology to industry, as well as the creation of spin-off companies.

Specifically, it will do so through GraphCAT projects, led by Community members and co-funded through the Catalan regional research and innovation strategy for smart specialization, RIS3CAT.

The Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB) will take part in two of these projects: Graph-SIM, under the direction of Department of Electronic Engineering lecturer David Jiménez, and NeuroGraph, which will include the participation of lecturer Xavier Navarro from the Department of Cell Biology, Physiology and Immunology, and researcher at the Institute for Neuroscience (INc-UAB).

GRAPH-SIM will be focused on creating a simulation environment for hybrid graphene-silicon CMOS integrated circuits, that will allow calculating the electrical behavior of the circuits (including DC, AC response, transient analysis, and noise analysis) with a result consistent with experimental measurements. Given that such an environment already exists for silicon, the idea is to take advantage of this advance and add the ability to simulate the circuits made on the graphene platform, including the hybrid simulation of the circuits on both platforms.

The project is led by the UAB (experts in compact models of graphene devices), and has the collaboration of ICN2 (with extensive experience in the manufacture of graphene devices and circuits) and Keysight Technologies (a company recognized worldwide for offering simulation environments in various technologies).

NeuroGraph is all about the monitoring of cortical depolarization in neurointensive care using graphene microtransistors. The main objective of the project is advance in the translation of gSGFET technology to the clinical practice, by carrying out for first time a clinical assay in patients with traumatic brain injuries.

This activity is co-funded by the European Regional Development Funds (ERDF) allocated to the Programa operatiu FEDER de Catalunya 2014-2020, with the support of the Secretaria d’Universitats i Recerca of the Departament d’Empresa i Coneixement of the Generalitat de Catalunya for emerging technology clusters devoted to the valorization and transfer of research results (GraphCAT 001-P-001702).