The University of Newcastle, Australia

Low-temperature fabrication of graphene as a high-performance electronic material

As a material with high potential for revolutionising defence capabilities in the next decade, graphene fabrication is of interest in the military domain. We have developed a mechanism for the formation of high-quality graphene at less than half the temperature typically required (400°C vs 1000°C) using a range of liquid carbon sources trapped in a polymer matrix.

Competitive advantage

  • Pathway to easier and cheaper production of graphene. supporting the development of:
  • Detection-avoidance coatings on military vehicles. planes. submarines and combat ensembles
  • New lightweight ballistic armour
  • Improved battery storage and faster battery recharging
  • Surface coatings for discharging electric shocks and reducing static

Successful applications of research

  • Demonstration of low-temperature graphene for transparent electrodes in organic solar cells

Partners

  • US Air Force Asian Office of Aerospace Research and Development

Impact

  • Lighter armour material enables greater troop mobility and increased range for the same level of protection
  • Increased battery power supports advanced deployment of electronics
  • Alternatively, equal battery performance at a lighter weight supports greater range of troops and enhances overall military capability
  • Detection-avoidance and anti-static properties help to maximise survivability

Capabilities and facilities

  • Plasma-enhanced chemical vapour deposition facilities are available and are maintained as part of the Australian National Fabrication Facility capability within the centre; this equipment enablesrapidprototypingof various types of graphene and is particularly suited to the low­ temperature growth developed within the centre
  • Wet-lab facilities. with fumehoods and a suiteof the required materials, are available for preparation and post-processing of graphene samples
  • Critical expertise in the fabrication, characterisation and processing of low-temperaturegraphene as an electronic material

Further reading on: Material Sciences and Manufacturing