DEC 28, 2017 09:00 AM PST

Your Next Holiday Gift List Could Include Graphene-Based Wearables

Graphene, the one-atom-thick carbon structures, are without a doubt the most buzzed-about material in the world of science today. The 2010 Nobel Prize was awarded to the physicists Kostya Novoselov and André Geim, the pioneers in creating and characterizing this miraculous matter.

Laboratory-scale process unit. Illustration: Daniel Wand. Credit: Karim et al./2017 ACS Nano

Right now, research teams all over the world are competing to turn knowledge into applications. The rapid development of wearable technology has received another boost from a new development using graphene for printed electronic devices.

Having all ideal characteristics, graphene is considered the most promising material in wearable e-textiles. However, there is a significant bottleneck during the translation from laboratory to mass market: there is no good way to manufacture graphene-based e-textiles on an industrial scale.

In a recent publication in the journal ACS Nano, a team of researchers from the University of Manchester announced that they had developed a scalable method to produce graphene-based wearable e-textiles at a rate as fast as 150 meters (almost 500 feet) per minute, a factory-ready efficiency.

According to Nazmul Karim, the first author of the report, their cost-effective and straightforward way of producing multifunctional graphene textiles is a “is a significant breakthrough for the rapidly growing wearables market". The easily scalable method can be utilized in many real-life applications, such as sportswear, military gear, and medical clothing.

Traditionally, the graphene-based textiles are first coated with graphene oxide, and then the graphene oxide is reduced to its functional form of reduced graphene oxide. Instead, the Manchester team has reversed the previous process: they first reduced the graphene oxide in solution and then coated the textiles with the reduced form.

"Our future research plan is to look into other 2D materials and utilize their benefits for wearable e-textiles applications," Karim said. "We are also looking to commercialize these technologies in collaboration with industrial partners."

How flexible is graphene? Credit: University of Manchester

Source: phys.org

About the Author
  • With years of experience in biomedical R & D, Daniel is also very into writing. He is constantly fascinated by what's happening in the world of science. He hopes to capture the public's interest and promote scientific literacy with his trending news articles.
You May Also Like
NOV 12, 2018
Plants & Animals
NOV 12, 2018
Steaks Aren't the Only Things We Get From Cows
It’s no secret that cows are routinely slaughtered for beef, but what if we told you that only about 60% of the cow gets harvested for food? Fret not...
NOV 25, 2018
Technology
NOV 25, 2018
Ion Drive Propulsion, Initially Designed for Space, Proves Viable for Aircraft
If you’re familiar with advancements in spacecraft engine development, then you’ve undoubtedly heard of something known as the ion drive engine...
DEC 02, 2018
Space & Astronomy
DEC 02, 2018
Here's Why Harvard Scientists Believe Oumuamua Could Have Been an Alien Spacecraft
  When an interstellar object came sailing through our solar system last year, it astonished astronomers because they couldn’t quite categorize...
DEC 19, 2018
Chemistry & Physics
DEC 19, 2018
Novel Imaging Technique Enables Real-time Monitoring of Drug-induced Protein-protein Interaction
Protein-protein interactions (PPIs) are a common cellular phenomenon in which two or more protein molecules have close, specific physical contact that's driven by the electrostatic forces. PI...
FEB 04, 2019
Chemistry & Physics
FEB 04, 2019
The Science Behind Achieving Hypersonic Flight Speeds
Some specialized aircraft can travel at Mach 1, or more colloquially known as supersonic speed, but engineers have been trying to achieve stable Mach 5 or...
FEB 20, 2019
Chemistry & Physics
FEB 20, 2019
Here's How Pilots Land Massive Airplanes in Windy Conditions
No matter how large an aircraft is, it can be susceptible to crosswinds as it approaches the runway. Airplane pilots know this, and they’re trained t...
Loading Comments...