Graphene is a made up of a single flat, honeycomb layer of carbon – just one atom thick. While the bonds between layers of carbon in a normal piece of graphite can be easily broken, the single layer (or graphene) is tightly bonded and therefore incredibly strong.
Because of its remarkable properties it could create an impact of the scale last seen with the Industrial Revolution.
● Graphene is the world’s first 2D material and is one million times thinner than the diameter of a single human hair.
● Graphene is the strongest material discovered to date. It is 10x lighter and over 100x stronger than steel.
● Graphene can be stretched by an amazing 25% percent without breaking.
● Graphene is transparent.
● Graphene is better at carrying heat than many metals — including silver and copper.
● Graphene conducts electricity more efficiently than copper. In fact, it is almost as good as some superconductors. Importantly, unlike superconductors, which need to be cooled to low temperatures, graphene’s exceptional conductivity works even at room temperature.
Scientists are still dreaming up uses for this strong, light, transparent and relatively inexpensive material that can conduct electricity. It is currently being heavily researched in a number of fields including transport, electronics, energy, defence, desalination and medicine. Some of the most exciting breakthroughs so far are in the development of incredibly light and tough composite materials, flexible sensors, and screens, as well as the world’s smallest transistor which could hold the key to smaller and faster electronics.
Imagine a smartphone that can be charged in seconds and rolled up like a newspaper, lightweight wearable sensors that can be used to monitor patients in hospitals, stronger, rust-free materials that are used to make cars and planes, or packaging that can keep food and water cleaner for longer.
Graphene may be the key a huge range of future technologies.
iTech’s Campoona Graphite Project is a defined resource with a Historical Mineral Resource of 8.55 million tonnes at 9.0% TGC (total graphite content) on the Eyre Peninsula in South Australia, a first world mining jurisdiction. In 2019, Archer Materials demonstrated that small-scale mechanical mill processing of Campoona’s flake graphite could readily produce spherical graphite for the battery markets with a 95–99%+ conversion rate. Samples of graphite concentrate from Campoona Project have also been used to produce graphene.