Just got back from Shanghai. Many thanks to Johan Liu, for inviting me to the 2nd Sino-Swedish Graphene Innovation High Tech Forum.
It was a great meeting focused on the topic of thermal management which is actually one of the areas I see graphene adding quite bit of value especially in electronics & semicon industry. We saw an intriguing presentation from Lenova but unfortunately it was in Chinese and made me wonder once again why I am not learning Mandarin. ( The graphics seemed quite compelling though)
During the visit of the Supercarbon Gaphene Center, we discussed the business model of graphene industry parks in China funded by either the central government or by private investors. China’s rapid pace in graphene commercialization is quite astounding and government support is plentiful in the form of multi year tax exempt status, reduced or waived rent on the land on which these industry parks are built, infrastructure etc.
That being said, with the massive incentives and funding available, many companies with little potential get put on life support and live much longer than they should. That is perhaps a problem we see more clearly in China ….MANY MANY graphene contenders, companies, startups but difficult to weed out the ones with true potential from the ones artificially sustained by constant infusion of cash. The bubble will most likely burst at some point.
China is rapidly becoming a force to be reckoned with in Graphene. It is important for us to gain full understanding of the Chinese graphene landscape. Furthermore, as I often say.. Graphene is a Global Material, its full potential is not going to be realized without closeknit international collaborations and partnerships.
I very much look forward to my next trip to China.
With support from the governor’s office and invaluable help from Texas Workforce Commission, we will make Global Graphene Expo the centerpoint for graphene innovation in the US. Texas has a great concentration of semiconductor, oil & gas, energy and advanced manufacturing industries. Many of my target meetings revolve around getting these industries involved in assessment of graphene.
Had a quick chat with State senator Royce West in the hallways about graphene and he started looking it up as we spoke. It sure got his attention… Spreading the word about graphene one member at a time.
Met with Robert Allen, the President of Texas Economic Development Corporation, Go Big In Texas (Certainly applies to the number of awards TEDC has won over the years!) discussed graphene and its impact on native Texas industries. One of the questions I am asked often in these meetings is: “what material is graphene going to replace?” Is it steel, is it silicon? Is it silver? Just to put it out there…it certainly is NOT silicon.
Coffee with Michael Swisher from SmartStripe which is a Lighted HyperData Platform that is built to replace existing road strips. Quite interesting innovation, Smartstripe is looking into graphene for the next step in the development. Michael will be showcasing smartstripe at the Global Graphene Expo in Oct.
It was great to see Deji Akinwande at his office in the EER building at The University of Texas at Austin. (One of the most architecturally impressive academic building I have seen! ) We discussed where UT Austin and other Texas institutions stand regarding graphene research, number of patents and spin off companies.
I am quite excited about hosting the Global Graphene Expo in Austin this October. After this trip I am assured that this was the right move. The innovative and fast paced energy oft he city is a good match for graphene.
Many thanks to Larry Temple and Aaron Demerson for opening strategic doors for us and making us feel so welcome in Austin. It is not everyday that you get a personal tour of the Texas State Capitol!
Small graphene spikes can slice open and kill bacteria. This creates a protective surface against infection.
I have seen conflicting results about anti bacterial properties of graphene so I personally find it satisfying that the group at Chalmers University of Technology discovered what kills the bacteria is not graphene itself but the vertical orientation of the flakes that act as tiny knives.
These small vertical flakes can damage and slice open the bacteria but because human cells are so much larger ( 25 micrometer vs 1 um) it doesn’t damage the human cells. Another cool thing is that they used PECVD (Plasma-Enhanced Chemical Vapor Deposition) to create these flakes which makes the layer of carbon grows vertically instead of horizontally.
Great visit to the University of Mississippi and its Center for Manufacturing Excellence. Spent the day with new NGA corporate partner, Curadite, Inc. from California, along with some NanoTek folks. We all had a blast in Oxford with unrivaled Southern hospitality and lots of wonderful Southern food!
Most conversations revolved around incorporating graphene in Curadite design…challenges, next steps, potential partners.
Curadite is focused on disposable, sensor-enabled drug packaging to manage the opioid crisis in the US.
“The Curadite platform transforms the simple plastic pill bottle into a cellular enabled blister pack that tracks patient engagement in real-time. Compliance is supported with personalized text/call reminders using 4G cellular technology. ”
We discussed the integration of graphene, 2D printing and nanosilver to elevate the design, bring substantial advantages and also reduce the cost.
A good point brought up by CEO Dennis McNanny was that when we are prescribed opioids for a certain medical condition for a short amount of time it is considered a medication; after that period has elapsed, however, the same medication is then classified as a “drug.” Many addictions start with teens stealing pills from a family member.
The Curadite cloud-based design allows for warnings to be sent to the person after a blister pack is opened, so every pill is accounted for. Graphene can enable more secure and more sensitive packaging options, and I personally look forward to the outcome of this collaboration!
The existence of G+ in these tires reduces rolling resistance and increasing grip (G+ is Directa Plus‘s brand of Graphene Nano Platelets).
The result is a tire that is both faster in motion and safer in turning under braking or in extreme weather conditions.
Good for those of us who like to drive!
“The benefits of incorporating G+ into tyres have been demonstrated by the Company’s longstanding relationship with Vittoria group, a leading manufacturer of bicycle tyres. Vittoria has launched multiple award-winning G+ bicycle tyres for on-road and off-road use. The Company is also conducting ongoing tests with other automotive and potential industrial partners of its G+ elastomeric composition for tyres.”
We saw a great talk on this by Deji Akinwande at the Graphene Innovation Summit in October in Nashville.
“The graphene tattoo is a dry physiological sensor which, because of its thinness, forms an ultra-conformal contact to skin, resulting in increased signal fidelity,” said co-author of the work Shideh Kabiri Ameri. “Conformability results in less susceptibility to motion artifacts, which is one the biggest drawbacks of conventional dry sensors and electrodes for physiological measurements.”
Last week, I asked Shideh on Linkedin, “How is the progress? Can you share any updates on the project?”
“Dear Zina, Thank you for asking. We recently lowered the thickness of the second version of the graphene electronic tattoo sensors by 25%, down to 350 nanometer. Our latest manuscript is under review and will be published soon.”
This should be interesting…looking forward to hearing more on the work.
A part of this study focuses on use of honey as an organic exfoliating agent to produce graphene and Graphene Nano Platelets.
Here’s Adrian’s comment that I received earlier today:
“Hi Zina Jarrahi Cinker,
Yes you have quite rightly focused in on the role of honey as the exfoliating agent. The team in China thought that there were two reasons honey was so good. i) It had a similar surface energy to graphene ii) It had the right viscosity to help the nanoplates slide apart in the roll mill. I’m more inclined to think the viscosity is the key factor here, but if you know better I’ll defer to your expert opinion. Good to hear from you, hope all that travelling around DC pays off.
A bio-inspired material that combines a soft, self-healing polymer with a tough layer of graphene oxide could be the basis of new, ultra-tough scratch resistant coatings.
“The material features a soft self-healing layer, a mixture of tannic acid and polyvinylalcohol (PVA) which form a dynamic hydrogen-bonded network. But this is reinforced by an outer PVA layer containing nanosheets of graphene oxide – a tough material that gives greater scratch resistance. This is similar, Yang says, to the structure of the skin epidermis, where hardened outer cells protect the soft, living tissue beneath, which can repair damage.”