The number of investors considering graphene is ever increasing because graphene has more than proved its invaluable versatility in the modern world. It is a carbon based super material consisting of a single, one atom-thick layer of carbon atoms based in a hexagonal arrangement. It is flexible, durable and has proven conductivity to transparency and biocompatibility.
Graphene has the distinction of being the thinnest material know to man, being just one atom thick, as mentioned above. It is one million times thinner than paper, so thin, that it is actually considered as two dimensional. Despite its size it is one of the strongest materials, about 200 times stronger than steel.
Thanks to it being an excellent conductor for both heat and electricity, while also being able to absorb light, graphene has proved itself has a material that is changing the world, as we unlock more and more of its seemingly unlimited potential. It has become an integral property for most modern industries.
Producing high quality graphene provides its own challenges, with graphene companies around the world producing different grades and types of graphene. Graphene simply put is a single layer of graphite and can be found as high quality single-layer graphene or as graphene flakes.
The Global Graphene Market is expected to witness a significant growth of USD 811.40 million by 2023 with CAGR of 43.0% between 2016 and 2023. This growth is mainly owing to the increasing demand in the electronics industries and the growing pharmaceutical, energy, coatings, electronics on account of developing commercial markets particularly in North America and Asia-Pacific.
High end graphene sheets are used mainly in R&D activities or for applications such as sensors. Graphene flakes are lower in price and produced mostly in large volumes are used in numerous applications for sports equipment, to consumer electronics and the automotive industry to name a few.
It is in the field of electronics that graphene really shines as it conducts electricity remarkably, carrying electricity even better than good conductors like copper and it even works at room temperature, unlike some superconductors that need to be cooled in low temperatures. Basically, graphene is a material that is relatively inexpensive that can conduct electricity while greatly reducing energy losses. This is why it is revolutionary for power plants and portable gadgets such as mobiles, providing them with longer battery life.
The computer industry too has understood the value of graphene in making the thinnest transistors up to date and made more powerful as well by speeding the flow of electrons.
There is a shift towards lithium-ion batteries being replaced in electric cars by a new variety made from graphene. It is believed that it will allow a battery to be recharged more rapidly than is currently possible, as graphene is faster to recharge than lithium-ion. It is also more resistant and less subject to wear and so it should experience a longer lifespan requiring fewer battery changes. Graphene based batteries are also considered as safer than lithium-ion batteries.
It is owing to the same properties that graphene is slowly becoming the preferred choice in many biomedical applications. Thanks to graphene’s honeycomb like planar structure, it provides a higher surface area which increases its suitability for applications such as sensing applications, gene vector and drug delivery.
One of the main areas that graphene is making its mark is in energy. Solar cells work by transferring energy from light particles to the calm electrons which become excited and more to the free-flowing layer and thereby creating more electricity. When it comes to graphene, its layers of electrons overlap, which means less light energy is needed to get the electrons to jump between the layers. This will give rise to very efficient solar cells in the future, while also allowing the manufacture of cells that are thinner and lighter than silicon ones.
Graphene batteries allow for increased electrode density, faster cycle times and an improved battery lifespan owing to its ability to hold a charge for longer.
All these traits have made it a much-in-demand component for modern technology, especially as shown, in the fields of biomedical equipment, solar batteries, mobile technology and other areas of importance in today’s world. This ever increasing demand for graphene is likely to keep increasing its value, which is why it is garnering the interest of investors across the globe.