A remarkable experiment conducted at Binghamton University has enabled researchers with unprecedented environment-friendly spatial control over the electrical properties of the ‘wonder material’ Graphene. With the new tweaked electrical properties, Graphene Oxide could revolutionize flexible electronics, solar cells and biomedical instruments.
For the study, researchers Jeffrey Mativetsky and Austin Faucett from Binghamton University triggered a local reaction with the help of an atomic force microscope. This enabled researchers to pattern electrically conductive features that are four nanometer small. It is highest spatial control yet while drawing a nanoscale electrically-conductive features in atomically-thin insulating sheets. It is to be noticed that one nanometer is nearly one hundred thousand times the width of a human hair.
“There is significant interest in defining regions with different functionalities, and writing circuitry into two-dimensional materials. Our approach provides a way to directly pattern electrically-conductive and insulating regions into graphene oxide with high spatial resolution,” said Mativetsky.
Graphene that was first discovered in 2003 has kept researchers to constantly experiment with it due to its interesting properties. It is nearly 207 times stronger than the steel by weight. Thus, it is widely used in bulletproof jackets for soldiers. Apart from being transparent it is also a good conductor of heat and electricity.
Graphene also know as wonder material is made of an atomically thin 2D carbon lattice structure. While Graphene Oxide is a deriveative of Graphene and deviates on some properties. In addition, graphene founder Andre Geim and Konstantin Novoselov were also awarded Nobel prize in 2010 for the revolutionary discovery.Moreover, the new process is environment-friendly as researchers did not use any chemicals to gain spatial control.
The study has given new insights in exploiting the properties of wonder material graphene. Researchers believe that with new spatial control the material could revolutionize the flexible electronics, solar cells and biomedical instruments.
The study appeared in the journal Carbon.