Super-Skinny Material That Could Transform Electronics

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A case study from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) archives which looks at how sheets of carbon just a single atom thick could herald a new generation of electronics devices thanks to research supported by EPSRC.

Graphene is incredibly thin and flexible, yet it is also the strongest material ever tested and conducts electricity and heat exceptionally well. It is being used to create a new generation of transistors that are a fraction of the size of current devices, miniaturising microelectronics and speeding up computers and other devices.

Graphene could also help plug the "terahertz gap" between microwaves and infrared. This could pave the way for satellite to aircraft communication and new non-invasive medical imaging.

Professor Andre Geim and colleagues at the University of Manchester invented graphene in 2004 despite theory telling them that materials just one atom thick could not be made. EPSRC funding is now supporting research to develop real-life applications for graphene.

EPSRC is a part of the Research Councils UK (RCUK) partnership of research councils.

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