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A burning interest in graphene surface coatings

Industry News, News | April 30, 2015 | By:

Hohenstein Institute research explores how carbon may lead to next advance in personal protective equipment.

The Hohenstein Institute is exploring how a single layer of carbon just one atom thick may lead to the next advance in personal protective equipment.

Graphene, made of carbon linked in a hexagon honeycomb lattice, conducts heat and electricity and has higher tensile strength than steel, yet remains flexible, abrasion-resistant and impermeable to gases. The Hohenstein team will study “to what extent the surface of textiles can be changed using graphene modifications, in particular with a view to later applying the process to heat-protective clothing,” says Dr. Roshan Paul, project manager for the research.

Transforming graphene modifications into stable aqueous coatings is the key to using it for textiles. The aim of the Hohenstein research team is to develop stable techniques for applying aqueous graphene dispersions, so that they can be used as a permanent coating on different textile surfaces. A range of graphene modifications are being considered since they each have different properties. The newly developed surface modifications for the various textiles will then be analyzed for their suitability for heat protective equipment. As a fire-resistant material, graphene acts as a physical barrier that prevents diffusion of heat, gases and the byproducts of thermal decomposition. In addition, its resistance to abrasion and rupture is about 200 times higher than that of steel.

Source: Hohenstein Institute

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