Nanomaterials - Diamonds Aren't The Only Thing That's Valuable.

Pure nanomaterials have become available today.

Graphite is a fascinating example. 

  • Graphite is a kind of elementary carbon that is commonly used to produce pencil leads. It's just a stack of carbon layers, each one the thickness of a single carbon atom. 
  • Each layer is made up of graphene, a two-dimensional carbon molecule lattice regulated by quantum physics. 
  • For many years, scientists have been researching these ultra-thin carbon layers theoretically. 
  • Their quantum-physical calculations and simulations revealed that graphene must have incredible properties: 200 times the strength of steel, outstanding electrical and thermal conductivity, and transparency to visible light. 
  • They merely needed verification that their theoretical calculations were true in practice. 
  • Andre Geim and Konstantin Novoselov then succeeded in isolating pure graphene in 2004. Their plan was to use a graphite-based adhesive tape to remove it. 
  • In 2010, Geim and Novoselov were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics for their work. Has a Nobel Prize in Physics ever been granted for anything so simple? 

Graphene is the world's thinnest substance, with thicknesses on the order of one nanometer. 

  • At the same time, its atoms are held together by densely packed “covalent” chemical bonds, which bind them all. 
  • There are no flaws in this material, no areas where it may break, in a sense. 
  • Because each carbon atom in this composite may participate in chemical processes on both sides, it exhibits exceptional chemical, electrical, magnetic, optical, and biological capabilities. 

Graphene might be used in the following ways: 

• Clean drinking water production: graphene membranes may be utilized to construct extremely efficient desalination facilities. 

• Energy storage: Graphene may be utilized to store electrical energy more effectively and long-term than other materials, allowing for the creation of long-lasting and lightweight batteries. 

• Medicine: graphene-based prosthetic retinas are being studied by experts (see below). 

• Electronics: graphene is the world's tiniest transistor. 

• Special materials: graphene might potentially be utilized as a coating to create flexible touchscreens, allowing mobile phones to be worn like bracelets. 

The EU believes graphene-based technologies have such promising futures that it designated research in this subject as one of two initiatives in the Future and Emerging Technologies Flagship Initiative, each with a one-billion-euro budget. 

The Human Brain Project is the other sponsored project, but a third has emerged in the meantime: the flagship project on quantum technologies. 

Graphene, a nanomaterial, is thought to be a future wonder material.

~ Jai Krishna Ponnappan

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