Cambridge University spin-out Paragraf has begun producing high-quality graphene on a commercial scale.
According to Paragraf, the graphene produced measures up to eight inches (20 cm) in diameter, and is large enough for commercial electronic devices.
These graphene wafers could be used in transistors, where graphene-based chips could deliver speeds more than ten times faster than silicon chips.
It could also be used in chemical and electrical sensors, where graphene could increase sensitivity by a factor of more than 30.
The university reports that the company’s first graphene-based electronic device will be available in the next few months or so.
Graphene usage has so far been stymied by difficulties associated with producing the wonder material in high quality and at high volumes.
Conventional methods utilizes copper as a catalyst to make large-area graphene. The element however has a habit of contaminating the material, making it unsuitable for electronic applications.
Cambridge professor Sir Colin Humphreys along with his former postdoctoral researchers Dr Simon Thomas and Dr Ivor Guiney, developed a new way to make large-area graphene in 2015.
Using the group’s methods, Paragraf successfully formed high-quality graphene wafers up to eight inches in diameter.
The process not only helped them beat other university research groups worldwide, but also companies like IBM, Intel and Samsung.
Humphreys and his team spun out Paragraf in early 2018. Thomas is currently its CEO and Guiney its Chief Technology Officer.
Humphreys, who has recently moved to Queen Mary University of London, continues to serves as the company’s Chairman.
Image and content: Paragraf/University of Cambridge