Graphene Enters High-volume Applications... And This Is Just The Start
Oct 09, 2019 Dr Richard Collins
As is the case for many advanced materials, the expectation accelerates and fades long before a notable order appears on any manufacturers' book. Graphene, the "wonder material" of the 21st century, finally slips away from the (sometimes misleading) media spotlight just as the material steps off the testing bench and high-volume orders begin to roll in.
The 14th Graphene & 2D Materials show, Nov 20-21, Santa Clara, is a B2B conference dedicated to graphene commercialization, with over 35 notable graphene speakers, seven other co-located conferences in related application verticals, and a 270+ exhibitor tradeshow. This article highlights some of the graphene themes addressed.
What applications are there?
The large orders are diverse including thermal spreaders in smartphones and cars, battery electrode additives, anti-corrosion paints, and additives for polymeric pipelines.
Lots of potential applications are also on the horizon from water filtration, thermal interface materials, lubricants, lightweight composite structures, conductive ink, and so many more. You will be able to hear from many of the key manufacturers addressing these markets with specific use-cases and world-first announcements.
Is the manufacturing process and capacity established?
The chicken and egg cycle of "no-scaling without orders and no-orders without demonstrated scale" is broken. Many players now have suitable capacity, and more are rapidly ramping up their capability.
Despite this, the manufacturing process is still not a closed book. New players continue to enter the field and propose more efficient or alternative routes. This includes electrochemical exfoliation, "unzipping" CNTs, efficient shearing processes, and others.
Both established players scaling up their process and new entrants will present at the event. Speakers and their presentations can be seen on the conference agenda. A keynote presentation will be given by NanoXplore, a company undergoing rapid expansion to their 10,000 tpa plant, alongside one of their notable investors and partners Martinrea International (a multi-billion dollar automotive tier 1 company).
What about other types of graphene and 2D materials?
The previous applications and processes are predominantly for the nanoplatelets and powders, but this is not the only positive approach for graphene. Continued innovations in CVD or "bottom-up" graphene, epitaxial growth, and other 2D materials are all on the rise.
CVD graphene is the most advanced of these and dedicated sessions to both manufacture and applications will be on display at the show. This includes LG Electronics showcasing their vertical R2R process and Graphenea operating on the wafer-scale.
Top Image: IDTechEx
Is there still a role for academia?
Despite the approaching inflection point and consequent period of rapid revenue growth, there is still plenty of fundamental innovation in graphene and other 2D materials. The IDTechEx Show! is dedicated to the commercialization of emerging technology, one session within the conference track is dedicated to academic reviews for commercial advantages.
This session includes speakers from leading institutions and looks at printed electronics, silicon integration, sensing, composites, and energy storage.
IDTechEx Show! USA 2019
Conference attendees get complete access to all the conference tracks and exhibition floor. The tracks are all led by IDTechEx analysts to bring you an excellent blend of technical and commercial understanding.
Each conference is opened with a market overview of the topic, but for more detailed information on the market and technology, masterclasses are held on the day prior and proceeding the event. For more information on the masterclasses available see: www.IDTechEx.com/USA19/Masterclasses