India-based lab gets a major grant to develop a graphene-based material that rapidly stops bleeding

Researchers from the CIIRC in India have reportedly received a large sum of money (Rs 30 crore - about $4.6 million) from Sringeri mutt for developing a graphene-based product that can stop bleeding in less than 90 seconds. The product could help soldiers in the field, as well as other applications.

The product is a carboxyl-linked graphene sponge (DAPGS), and is said to make use of amino acids and a biocompatible protein that have been extracted from a tree (bongamia tree) to also help prevent infection. But the unique feature of DAPGS, the team says, is not only that it inherits the remarkable liquid absorbability from the cross-linked graphene sponge, but also enhances the interfacial stimulating ability to blood cells. It can, in addition to absorbing plasma rapidly, stimulate erythrocytes and platelets to change their regular form and structure at the interface, which largely affects the bio-functioning of the cell, thus promoting blood coagulation.

Sir Richard Branson excited about graphene's future in aerospace

In a recent speech, Virgin Atlantic president Sir Richard Branson raised the prospect of planes being made entirely from graphene within 10 years. Counting on graphene's mechanical strength and light nature, he hopes the aerospace industry could welcome light, durable planes that will cut fuel expenses, among other advantages.

He was quoted saying "hopefully graphene can be the planes of the future. 10 years down the line. They would be massively lighter than the current planes, which again would make a difference on fuel burn." Branson likened the push for graphene planes to urging Airbus and Boeing to make planes from carbon fibre, a battle he won. Boeing's latest 787 Dreamliner planes are made from 50% carbon fibre and other composite materials, as opposed to the traditional 100% aluminium. They use 30% less fuel than their standard alternatives.

University of Manchester and Masdar's collaborative graphene-based water desalination project gets a $500,000 boost

The University of Manchester and The UAE-based Masdar Institute of Science and Technology have announced a $500,000 (AED1.8 million) funding from the UK, for a recently declared collaborative research program. It seems that this funding is directly aimed at a project that uses graphene to improve water desalination techniques.

Global resource management leader Veolia, UK-based membrane processes technologies leader Modern Water and leading mineral project developer Neometals, will participate in this collaborative research project as industrial partners and potential end-users.

Talga enters agreement with Chemetall to develop graphene-based coatings

Talga Resources has announced the signing of a joint development agreement with Chemetall, a global business unit of BASF Coatings Division, to co-develop and commercialize graphene-enhanced metal surface coatings.

Under the terms of the Agreement, Talga and Chemetall will cooperate to develop Talga value-added graphene products for use in Chemetall surface treatment products. The joint development program aims to set new industry standards for eco-friendly, high performance, corrosion resistant surface treatments.

The Graphene Flagship develops graphene-based neural probes

Researchers from the Graphene Flagship have developed a new graphene-based device able to record brain activity in high resolution while maintaining excellent signal to noise ratio (SNR). Based on graphene field-effect transistors, the flexible devices have to potential to open up new possibilities for the development of functional implants and interfaces.

Graphene-enabled neural probes by the Graphene Flagship image

Neural activity is detected through the electric fields generated when neurons fire. These fields are highly localized, so having ultra-small measuring devices that can be densely packed is important for accurate brain readings. The graphene-based probes are reportedly competitive with state-of-the-art platinum electrode arrays and have the benefits of intrinsic signal amplification and a better signal-to-noise performance when scaled down to very small sizes. This will allow for more densely packed and higher resolution probes, vital for precision mapping of brain activity. The inherent amplification property of the transistor also removes the need for a pre-amplification close to the probe – a requirement for metal electrodes.

Graphene & 2D Materials Europe - Accelerating The Commercialisation Process For Graphene

This is a sponsored post by IDTechEx

“The Graphene and 2D Materials Europe event will be the 10th business-focused IDTechEx exhibition and conference. This event is squarely focused on addressing the critical challenge facing the industry: accelerating the commercialisation process.

This is why our event brings together the graphene community together with end users industries such as printed electronics, 3D printing, energy storage, supercapacitors, wearable technology and e-textiles, structural electronics and electric vehicles.

“This creates a unique environment in which our attendees can learn the latest innovation in the world of graphene, can hear real voice of customers from end users industries, and can benchmark graphene against rival technologies all in one place. “, says Dr Khasha Ghaffarzadeh, Research Director at IDTechEx.

Rice U researchers pave the way towards using graphene to repair spinal cord injuries

Researchers from Rice University, led by the renowned Prof. James M. Tour, are attempting to repair spinal cord injuries with the help of TexasPEG, a water soluble graphene nanoribbon dispersion. In rodents, the method has been able to restore a completely paralyzed rat to a motility score of 19 out of 21, where 21 is a perfect score. If successful in humans as well, it may be applicable to new injuries, and potentially old injuries up to 30 years in the past - restoring function and sensation in both paraplegics and quadriplegics.

The team's novel approach acts as a directional scaffold for the neurons to grow along. It uses highly conductive graphene nanoribbons (GNR), which are long and thin. These graphene nanoribbons have been chemically modified to be water soluble (PEG-GNR), so they can disperse well between the existing neurons. Neurons then attach to these GNRs, and grow axons and dendrites along them until they re-connect with another neuron. These PEG-GNR are dissolved in PEG600 to form a solution that is topically administered to cuts in the spinal cord. This solution has been named TexasPEG by researchers in the field.

3D printed bacteria could be used to reduce graphene oxide

Researchers at Delft University have shown that placing certain types of bacteria on flat sheets of graphene oxide can turn it into a reduced version of the compound (rGO) by pulling oxygen atoms off the material as they metabolize. This turns the popular process of GO reduction, normally done with chemicals or high heat, into a much cheaper, more environmentally friendly process.

While the traditional method of reducing graphene with heat or chemicals is still more effective, the bacterial method could be very useful in the production of precise, small-scale graphene structures – such as those produced with a 3D printer. In this work, the researchers document how they modified a $300 CoLiDo 3D printer by replacing the extruder with a pipet tip and tubing system. “This alteration allows the liquid biological ink (‘bioink’) to be transported under ambient temperatures that are amenable to microbes, rather than the elevated temperatures that are applied to melt plastic filament,” the team explains.

Manchester U team shows the influence of pre- and post-dispersion on the properties of GNP-enhanced epoxy

Researchers from The University of Manchester have conducted a study that presents a review of the three steps of manufacturing graphene/epoxy nano-composites. The possible pre-treatments of nanoparticles before dispersion are introduced, and their influence on the final nanocomposite properties discussed.

SEM images of fracture surface of aligned GNP based epoxy compositeSEM images of fracture surface of aligned GNP based epoxy composite

The study stresses interesting results, among which are improvements in various characteristics via the use of GNPs. For instance, an improvement of the thermal diffusivity of 220% was seen when compared to a non-oriented GNP epoxy sample. The work demonstrates how the addition of functionalized graphene platelets to an epoxy resin will allow it to act as electrical and thermal conductor rather than as insulator. The mechanical properties of functionalized GNP/epoxy composites show improvement of the interfacial bond.