In October 2013, Europe launched its ambitions $1 billion 10-year Graphene Flagship research initiative. Back then the project's consortium included 75 partners from 17 countries. Today it was announced that 66 new partners are joining the program, which will also bring the number of participating countries to 19.
These new partners joined following a €9 million competitive call, which is part of the €54 million ramp-up phase in 2014-2015. The project received 218 proposals from 738 organizations and 37 countries. 21 proposals out of those 218 were selected for funding. The project coordinator, theoretical physicist Jari Kinaret at Chalmers University, said that the response for the competitive call was "overwhelming" - a strong indicator of the recognition for and trust in the flagship effort throughout Europe.
The countries with the highest number of partners are Germany and Italy (23 partners each), Spain (18), UK (17) and France (13).
One of the new partners is Belgian research institute Imec. Imec intends to show that graphene can form the basis of practical optoelectronic devices. The types of components where Imec will investigate using graphene include high speed modulators and detectors for use in low power optical interconnects.