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GrapheneCA casts a spotlight on usefulness of graphene

Snapshot

As its name indicates, graphene is extracted from graphite, the material used in pencils

graphene
  • GrapheneCA's first production of natural graphene started back in July of 2017

  • Based in Brooklyn, New York, GrapheneCA controls all of its research and development as well as the intellectual property for its graphene products. The company bills itself as the only green graphene producer in the world.

  • The potential electronic applications of graphene include ultra-small transistors, touchscreens and wearable electronics.


What is GrapheneCA?

GrapheneCA is a producer of natural graphene and graphene materials that is striving to become the Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) of the graphene business.

The privately-held company first began producing graphene flakes in July of 2017 from its production facility in Brooklyn, New York.

Its technology has been patented and GrapheneCA is preparing for mass production to advance a number of industrial and commercial applications for its graphene supply.

As its name indicates, graphene is extracted from graphite, the material used in pencils. Like graphite, graphene is entirely composed of carbon atoms and 1 millimeter of graphite contains some 3 million layers of graphene. Whereas graphite is a three-dimensional crystalline arrangement, graphene is a two-dimensional crystal only an atom thick.

Wide range of uses

Graphite has a wide range of industrial uses including being used in steel-making, brake-pads and dry lubricants. It's also used in fuel cells, which power hybrid and electric vehicles and in lithium-ion batteries used in portable consumer devices, like laptops and smartphones.

Indeed, its utility is incredibly varied. Filters composed of graphene are small enough to block unwanted particles but wide enough to allow for the passage of clean water, for example. And a graphene-based aircraft wing, meanwhile, could drastically decrease a plane’s weight while increasing its fuel efficiency and range.

It is thought that more than 90% of the world’s supply of graphene is impure and what is commonly called graphene is actually graphene oxide.

What GrapheneCA makes in Brooklyn, however, is highly-pure graphene. Thanks to the removal of impurities, its graphite’s carbon content nears 99.99%.

Growing demand

To meet expected demand, GrapheneCA is cracking on with the business of manufacturing graphene in the US, with next year’s production set to reach 1,200 tons.

The market size for graphene is expected to climb to $1 billion by 2023 from $85 million in 2017.

Demand from the electronics industry as well as the development of graphene-based parts for battery-less vehicles and as replacements in silicon chips number among the factors that will boost the market’s growth.

How is it doing?

At the moment, the company is working with companies who are looking to use graphene in cement, composites, coatings, inks, lubricants and sensors.

GrapheneCA has sales partners around the globe. Its public debut on the Toronto Venture Exchange is also expected in the coming months.

The market’s growth going forward will be driven by graphene-based products that are in various stages of research and commercialization. These include supercapacitors, which provide an alternative to rechargeable batteries; transparent conductive paints for displays and solar cells; medical implants; stronger wind turbines; improved sports equipment; and advanced touchscreens.

Management has big ambitions

Despite only being in business since 2017, GrapheneCA’s ambitions are sweeping.

"We want to be the Apple of the graphene and carbon world with smart products and awesome design,” says David Robles, GrapheneCA’s head of business development.  

Contact Ellen Kelleher at [email protected]

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