UTS Scientists have reported remarkable results in developing a composite material based on graphite that is a thin as paper and ten times stronger than steel.
In work recently published in the Journal of Applied Physics, a UTS research team supervised by Professor Guoxiu Wang has developed reproducible test results and nanostructural samples of graphene paper, a material with the potential to revolutionise the automotive, aviation, electrical and optical industries.
Graphene paper (GP) is a material that can be processed, reshaped and reformed from its original raw material state – graphite. Researchers at UTS have successfully milled the raw graphite by purifying and filtering it with chemicals to reshape and reform it into nano-structured configurations which are then processed into sheets as thin as paper.
These graphene nanosheet stacks consist of monolayer hexagonal carbon lattices and are placed in perfectly arranged laminar structures which give them exceptional thermal, electrical and mechanical properties.
Using a synthesised method and heat treatment, the UTS research team has produced material with extraordinary bending, rigidity and hardness mechanical properties. Compared to steel, the prepared GP is six times lighter, five to six times lower density, two times harder with 10 times higher tensile strength and 13 times higher bending rigidity.
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