Researchers develop a novel graphene-vanadium flexible hybrid battery/supercapacitor

Researchers at the Graphene Integrated Functional Technologies (GIFT) Research Cluster at Queen’s University in Canada have developed a novel graphene-based flexible hybrid batterysupercapacitor device.

Structure of the hybrid battery/supercapacitor image

The device consists of high specific surface area electrodes paired with an electrolyte, which contains a redox species that can exist in more than two oxidation states. The two initially equal half-cells of the device consist of a reduced graphene oxide hydrogel which encapsulates vanadium ions, synthesized with a single-step method.

Graphene-enhanced color-changing flexible photonic crystals could be the key to next-gen smart sensors

An international team of scientists, led by the Universities of Surrey and Sussex, has developed graphene-enhanced color-changing, flexible photonic crystals that could be used to develop sensors that warn when an earthquake might strike next.

Optical images and internal microstructure of graphene-enhanced colloidal crystals imageOptical images and internal microstructure of colloidal crystals enhanced with graphene. Image from Advanced Functional Materials

The wearable, robust and low-cost sensors can respond sensitively to light, temperature, strain or other physical and chemical stimuli making them an extremely promising option for cost-effective smart visual sensing applications in a range of sectors including healthcare and food safety.

Nanotech Energy concludes $27.5 Million funding round and announces non-flammable battery ready for commercialization

Los Angeles-based NanotNanotech Energy logo imageech Energy has announced the official close of its Series C round of funding. This round was expected to close at $25 million, yet included an option to allow for an additional $2.5 million for a total of $27.5 million invested.

“This round of funding – with such high-level and committed investors – validates the need the international market has for our proprietary battery technology,” said Dr. Jack Kavanaugh, chairman and CEO of Nanotech Energy Inc. “We are confident that we have a one-of-a-kind, industry-changing product that will impact the technologies and bottom lines of multiple end-user markets. This round of funding allows us to dramatically expand our production of graphene batteries, as well as our production of conductive epoxies, conductive inks and electromagnetic interference shielding spray paints and films. This will also facilitate our efforts to further increase our large-scale manufacturing of high-quality graphene that we provide for use in downstream applications.”

KRICT team develops improved graphene production method

A state-run research body in South Korea opened the way for the mass-production of high-quality industrial graphene in powder form without treating graphite with a strong acid. A domestic company will seek commercial production within this year.

The Korea Research Institute of Chemical Technology (KRICT) said its research team has developed an electrochemical stripping process that can send electricity to graphite electrodes to peel graphene into very thin layers. The peeled graphene is extracted in powder form through a filter. The process can reportedly produce 60 grams of high-quality graphene per hour.

Graphene-enhanced carbon fiber could lead to affordable, stronger aerospace and automotive materials

A research team, which includes researchers from Penn State, the University of Virginia and Oak Ridge National Laboratory, in collaboration with industry partners Solvay and Oshkosh, has found that adding small amounts of graphene to the production process of carbon fibers - which are typically expensive to make - both reduces the production cost and strengthens the fibers and so could one day lead to using these lightweight, high-strength materials to improve safety and reduce the cost of producing planes and cars.

For decades, carbon fibers have been a mainstay of airplane production. If created in the right way, these long strands of carbon-based atoms are lightweight, stiff and strong. "Even though carbon fibers have really nice features, they would make a car far more expensive" with the way carbon fibers are manufactured now, said Adri van Duin, professor of mechanical and chemical engineering, Penn State. "If you can get these properties easier to manufacture then you can make cars significantly lighter, lower the cost of them and make them safer."

Graphene/perovskite nanosensor detects nitrogen dioxide with 300% improved sensitivity

A research team led by Juan Casanova and Eduard Llobet from the Departamento de Ingeniería Electrónica, Eléctrica y Automática at the Universitat Politècnica de València (URV), used graphene and perovskites to create a nanosensor that detects nitrogen dioxide with 300% improved sensitivity.

The team used graphene that is hydrophobic (water and moisture-resistant) and sensitive in gas detection, but with some limitations: it is not very selective and its sensitivity declines over time. In addition, the researchers used perovskites, a crystalline-structure material commonly used in the field of solar cells. However, they quickly deteriorate when they are exposed to the atmosphere. That's the reason why the team decided to combine perovskites with a hydrophobic material able to repel water molecules - in order to prove they can prevent or slow down their deterioration.

KIST researchers develop stretchable graphene-based lithium-ion battery

A research team from the Korea Institute of Science and Technology (KIST) recently developed a graphene-based lithium-ion battery that is flexible enough to be stretched.

Schematic diagram of stretchable battery manufacturing process image

Dr. Jeong Gon Son's research team at the Photo-Electronic Hybrids Research Center at the Korea Institute of Science and Technology (KIST) developed the high-capacity, stretchable lithium-ion battery. The battery was developed by fabricating a structurally stretchable electrode consisting solely of electrode materials and then assembling it with stretchable gel electrolyte and stretchable packaging.

First Graphene and Foster Plastics Industries to commence testing on EVA products

First Graphene logo imageFirst Graphene (FGR) has reported that Foster Plastics Industries, an Australian extrusion company, is collaborating with FGR to develop PureGRAPH-enhanced ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA) materials for use in Foster’s range of solar tubes and plastic extrusion systems.

The PureGRAPH 10 EVA masterbatch loaded with 30% graphene will be drawn down to the desired ultimate concentration of 0.25% to 1% within Foster’s proprietary black nitrile/PVC compound.

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