FEB 08, 2017 10:37 AM PST

Is Graphene Finally Easy Enough to Make?

WRITTEN BY: Anthony Bouchard

There's a super special multi-use and versatile material out there known as graphene, and manufactures have been looking for cost-efficient a way to mass-produce the stuff since it was originally discovered back in 2004.

It's stronger than steel, and yet lighter than plastic. It's a very special material that could make unbreakable smartphone screens, could help us build more durable building and/or bridges, and much more. Additionally, it's biodegradable and it works well with organic matter.

Unfortunately, no way of making graphene is in any way, shape, or form, easy. But a new method described in the journal Nature Communications that involves super-heating soybean oil to approximately 800º Celsius atop of a sheet of nickel foil.

The process is good enough to create credit card-sized sheets, but even at this production speed, it's still very difficult to produce. Nevertheless, it's a much easier method, as it doesn't require a laboratory or a vacuum chamber.

It would seem that high amounts of heat are the key to producing the stuff, and it's even possible to produce the material in chunks, but there's a lot of confusion about how to create it in the shapes and sizes that we need in vast quantity. Production is also super expensive.

This is a problem we aim to solve in the near future, as graphene could one day change the way we build our world.

About the Author
Fascinated by scientific discoveries and media, Anthony found his way here at LabRoots, where he would be able to dabble in the two. Anthony is a technology junkie that has vast experience in computer systems and automobile mechanics, as opposite as those sound.
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