Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Graphene gets a Teflon makeover

Date:
November 9, 2010
Source:
University of Manchester
Summary:
Scientists have created a new material which could replace or compete with Teflon in thousands of everyday applications. The researchers believe that fluorographene -- a flat, crystal version of Teflon and is mechanically as strong as graphene -- could be used as a thinner, lighter version of Teflon, and also find applications in electronics, such as for new types of LED devices.

Graphane crystal. This novel two-dimensional material is obtained from graphene (a monolayer of carbon atoms) by attaching hydrogen atoms (red) to each carbon atoms (blue) in the crystal.
Credit: Mesoscopic Physics Group, Prof. Geim - University of Manchester

University of Manchester scientists are among the first* to make a new material which could replace or compete with Teflon in thousands of everyday applications.

Related Articles


Professor Andre Geim, who along with his colleague Professor Kostya Novoselov won the 2010 Nobel Prize for graphene -- the world's thinnest material, has now modified it to make fluorographene -- a one-molecule-thick material chemically similar to Teflon.

Fluorographene is fully-fluorinated graphene and is basically a two-dimensional version of Teflon, showing similar properties including chemical inertness and thermal stability.

The results are reported in the advanced online issue of the journal Small. The work is a large international effort and involved research groups from China, the Netherlands, Poland and Russia.

The team hope that fluorographene -- a flat, crystal version of Teflon and is mechanically as strong as graphene -- could be used as a thinner, lighter version of Teflon, and also find applications in electronics, such as for new types of LED devices.

Graphene, a one-atom-thick material that demonstrates a huge range of unusual and unique properties, has been at the centre of attention since groundbreaking research carried out at The University of Manchester six years ago.

Its potential is almost endless -- from ultrafast transistors just one atom thick to sensors that can detect just a single molecule of a toxic gas and even to replace carbon fibres in high performance materials that are used to build aircraft.

Professor Geim and his team have exploited a new perspective on graphene by considering it as a gigantic molecule that, like any other molecule, can be modified in chemical reactions.

Teflon is a fully-fluorinated chain of carbon atoms. These long molecules bound together make the polymer material that is used in a variety of applications including non-sticky cooking pans.

The Manchester team managed to attach fluorine to each carbon atom of graphene..

To get fluorographene, the Manchester researchers first obtained graphene as individual crystals and then fluorinated it by using atomic fluorine.

To demonstrate that it is possible to obtain fluorographene in industrial quantities, the researchers also fluorinated graphene powder and obtained fluorographene paper.

Fluorographene turned out to be a high-quality insulator which does not react with other chemicals and can sustain high temperatures even in air.

One of the most intense directions in graphene research has been to open a gap in graphene's electronic spectrum, that is, to make a semiconductor out of metallic graphene. This should allow many applications in electronics. Fluorographene is found to be a wide gap semiconductor and is optically transparent for visible light, unlike graphene that is a semimetal.

Professor Geim said: "Electronic quality of fluorographene has to be improved before speaking about applications in electronics but other applications are there up for grabs."

Rahul Nair, who led this research for the last two years and is a PhD student working with Professor Geim, added: "Properties of fluorographene are remarkably similar to those of Teflon but this is not a plastic.

"It is essentially a perfect one-molecule-thick crystal and, similar to its parent, fluorographene is also mechanically strong. This makes a big difference for possible applications.

"We plan to use fluorographene an ultra-thin tunnel barrier for development of light-emitting devices and diodes.

"More mundane uses can be everywhere Teflon is currently used, as an ultra-thin protective coating, or as a filler for composite materials if one needs to retain the mechanical strength of graphene but avoid any electrical conductivity or optical opacity of a composite."

Industrial scale production of fluorographene is not seen as a problem as it would involve following the same steps as mass production of graphene.

The Manchester researchers believe that the next important step is to make proof-of-concept devices and demonstrate various applications of fluorographene.

Professor Geim added: "There is no point in using it just as a substitute for Teflon. The mix of the incredible properties of graphene and Teflon is so inviting that you do not need to stretch your imagination to think of applications for the two-dimensional Teflon. The challenge is to exploit this uniqueness."

*See citation below for closely related work published earlier in NanoLetters.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Manchester. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal References:

  1. Rahul R. Nair, Wencai Ren, Rashid Jalil, Ibtsam Riaz, Vasyl G. Kravets, Liam Britnell, Peter Blake, Fredrik Schedin, Alexander S. Mayorov, Shengjun Yuan, Mikhail I. Katsnelson, Hui-Ming Cheng, Wlodek Strupinski, Lyubov G. Bulusheva, Alexander V. Okotrub, Irina V. Grigorieva, Alexander N. Grigorenko, Kostya S. Novoselov, Andre K. Geim. Fluorographene: A Two-Dimensional Counterpart of Teflon. Small, 2010; DOI: 10.1002/smll.201001555
  2. Jeremy T. Robinson, James S. Burgess, Chad E. Junkermeier, Stefan C. Badescu, Thomas L. Reinecke, F. Keith Perkins, Maxim K. Zalalutdniov, Jeffrey W. Baldwin, James C. Culbertson, Paul E. Sheehan, Eric S. Snow. Properties of Fluorinated Graphene Films. Nano Letters, 2010; 10 (8): 3001 DOI: 10.1021/nl101437p

Cite This Page:

University of Manchester. "Graphene gets a Teflon makeover." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 November 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101108140530.htm>.
University of Manchester. (2010, November 9). Graphene gets a Teflon makeover. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101108140530.htm
University of Manchester. "Graphene gets a Teflon makeover." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101108140530.htm (accessed November 29, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Matter & Energy News

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Magnetic Motors, Not Cables, Power This Elevator

Magnetic Motors, Not Cables, Power This Elevator

Newsy (Nov. 28, 2014) Imagine an elevator without cables. ThyssenKrupp has drafted an elevator concept that would cruise on linear magnetic motors. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
NASA's First 3-D Printer In Space Creates Its First Object

NASA's First 3-D Printer In Space Creates Its First Object

Newsy (Nov. 26, 2014) The International Space Station is now using a proof-of-concept 3D printer to test additive printing in a weightless, isolated environment. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Bolivian Recycling Initiative Turns Plastic Waste Into School Furniture

Bolivian Recycling Initiative Turns Plastic Waste Into School Furniture

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Nov. 26, 2014) Innovative recycling project in La Paz separates city waste and converts plastic garbage into school furniture made from 'plastiwood'. Tara Cleary reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Blu-Ray Discs Getting Second Run As Solar Panels

Blu-Ray Discs Getting Second Run As Solar Panels

Newsy (Nov. 26, 2014) Researchers at Northwestern University are repurposing Blu-ray movies for better solar panel technology thanks to the discs' internal structures. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins