Graphene progress

Monday 29th August 2016
Nanotube images: courtesy Google search

And making hay with good graphene and other nano-materials environment Hayvale is to acquire EPL (EPL Composite Solution), a specialist in the design, development and commercialisation of advanced composite polymer materials both in the UK and overseas. The acquisition will maximise EPL’s access to the nano-enhanced composites market and expected to significantly boost Haydale’s sales potential. Between material and technology providers, world-class universities and government-backed laboratories with innovation centres operating between the two regions.

Haydale and EPL already collaborate on a number of projects, and the acquisition of EPL is a significant step towards monetising Haydale’s proprietary technology for incorporating graphene and other nano-enhancing fillers into composites. The introduction of nano-fillers to EPL’s product range will produce the added benefits of impermeable barriers, conductivity and reduced weight with improved strength and stiffness. These benefits are set to have a great impact on the development of future composite structures, with significant potential for the aerospace and automotive industries.

The strategic Asian buy of Innophene includes a range of  graphene-enhanced transparent conductive inks and a newly developed PLA (Poly-Lactic Acid) resin for 3D printing Innophene can also add colour to 3D printing and the acquisition of Innophene is crucial in its expansion in Asia.

Ray Gibbs, (right) Haydale’s CEO, said the deal was a strategic move to ensure it had rapid response and application engineering support in the Far East. Haydale has already started trialling Innophene’s products, which include a range of graphene-enhanced transparent conductive inks and a newly developed PLA (Poly-Lactic Acid) resin for 3D printing that allows the addition of colour.

It is launching its own 3D printing material next month. Innophene’s graphene inks can be printed on a range of materials and will enable Haydale to target high value applications for the carbon-based organic and printed electronic market.

Innophene  (left) was set up in 2011 in conjunction with the Thailand National Science & Technology Development Agency.  Its acquisition some £311,000, is to be met by new shares issued to Innophene’s owners. "We have been working with the Innophene team for over nine months, where they have carried out a number of projects for us,” said Gibbs. “The analytical and application development facilities that they have access to on the Thailand Science Park is substantial and we have been impressed with the quality and speed of their response. “

Computer hardware and the smartphone sector are all awaiting  the nano super material carbon nanotubes which it is believed will replace the silicon chips it is only a matter of time CNT (carbon nanotubes)  will replace the silicon chips in computers and smartphones. Carbon nanotubes,  molecular structures found  in 1991 are renown for exceptional electrical and mechanical properties, CNTs carbon atoms are arranged in a helix of hexagonal arrays and acquire a unique electronic character for the nanotubes.  Industry experts expect the commercial implementation of carbon nanotubes to be just a decade away. A wide range of applications from CNT ranging from supercomputers to ultra-efficient smartphones is on the way.

Canadian research makes progress on CNT

Despite the huge potential, the super material carbon nanotubes have  posed technical difficulties in manufacture and commercialisation. Chemical researchers at Canada’s McMaster University have been able to resolve a major stumbling block in the use of CNTs. Developing a cost-effective way to purify carbon nanotubes, they claim to have paved way for the accelerated use of super material carbon nanotubes in electronic devices.

The researchers were able to untangle the semiconducting and metallic nanotubes produced simultaneously, reports Electronics 360. Carbon nanotubes will be the future chips to replace  silicon.   Subhasish Mitra, (left) professor of Electrical engineering at Stanford. He said: “Carbon nanotubes are  excellent candidates to complement silicon.”

Mitra and his Stanford colleague HS Philip Wong are working with IBM to develop a new generation computer that can have processors made of carbon nanotubes. “If you replace silicon transistors with carbon transistors, the margin of energy efficiency improvement could go up to 1000X,” Mitra said.

Alongside computers, far-reaching changes are happening on Smartphones too. When bestowed with massive computer capability the new generation smartphone could turn 30 times faster than currently, claims new research.

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