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Unexpected adhesion properties of graphene may lead to new nanotechnology devices
Date:8/23/2011

Graphene, considered the most exciting new material under study in the world of nanotechnology, just got even more interesting, according to a new study by a group of researchers at the University of Colorado Boulder.

The new findings -- that graphene has surprisingly powerful adhesion qualities -- are expected to help guide the development of graphene manufacturing and of graphene-based mechanical devices such as resonators and gas separation membranes, according to the CU-Boulder team. The experimentsshowed that the extreme flexibility of graphene allows it to conform to the topography of even the smoothest substrates.

Graphene consists of a single layer of carbon atoms chemically bonded in a hexagonal chicken wire lattice. Its unique atomic structure could some day replace silicon as the basis of electronic devices and integrated circuits because of its remarkable electrical, mechanical and thermal properties, said Assistant Professor Scott Bunch of the CU-Boulder mechanical engineering department and lead study author.

A paper on the subject was published online in the Aug. 14 issue of Nature Nanotechnology. Co-authors on the study included CU-Boulder graduate students Steven Koenig and NarasimhaBoddeti and Professor Martin Dunn of the mechanical engineering department.

"The real excitement for me is the possibility of creating new applications that exploit the remarkable flexibility and adhesive characteristics of graphene and devising unique experiments that can teach us more about the nanoscale properties of this amazing material," Bunch said.

Not only does graphene have the highest electrical and thermal conductivity among all materials known, but this "wonder material" has been shown to be the thinnest, stiffest and strongest material in the world, as well as being impermeable to all standard gases. It's newly discovered adhesion properties can now be added to the list of the material's see
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Contact: Scott Bunch
joseph.bunch@colorado.edu
303-492-6802
University of Colorado at Boulder
Source:Eurekalert  

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