Graphene-Info interviews Ari Pinkas, co-founder of Ora Graphene Audio

Graphene has many potential applications in the audio industry, and many companies have recently released graphene-enhanced audio devices (including headphones, earphones and interconnects). Ari Pinkas, the co-founder of Ora Graphene Audio, was kind enough to answer a few questions we had for him regarding the audio industry, graphene adoption, and the company's own graphene oxide based driver technology.

Q: Hello Ari, thank you for the interview. How long has Ora been involved in graphene research?

While Ora’s graphene technology is based on 2013 research done at McGill University in Montreal, Canada, our scientists have been working with the ‘wonder material’ for over a decade. Before founding the company, Ora’s technical team worked with General Motors on applying graphene oxide to battery anodes for electric vehicles at McGill. Earlier in his career, Ora’s VP Technology, Sergii Tutashkonko, was in Nagoya, Japan, hard at work applying CVD graphene to solar cells.

Pipes laminated with graphene could reduce corrosion in the oil and gas industry

Researchers at The University of Manchester and TWI have discovered ways of using graphene to prolong the lifetime of pipes used in the oil and gas industry. The team has designed a way of incorporating graphene into a polymer liner used in pipes that transport crude oil and gas from the sea floor. This technology has the potential to extend the life of the underwater pipework and therefore reduce the time between repairs.

Such pipes are generally made of internal layers of polymer or composite and external strengthening steel. Within these pipes, fluids may be at very high pressure and elevated temperature. In situations where carbon dioxide (CO2), hydrogen sulfide (H2S) and water permeate through the protective barrier layer of the pipe, the steel may corrode causing the pipe to lose strength over time, leading to a risk of catastrophic failure.

Meet the Graphene-Info team at Graphene Week 2018

Organised by the Graphene Flagship, Graphene Week is the annual gathering for graphene technology leaders. The Graphene Flagship is organizing an ambitious program this year that includes invited talks and keynote speakers, as well as a growing industrial exhibition.

Graphene Week 2018 banner

The Graphene-Info team will attend this exciting event, which takes place on September 10-14, in San Sebastian, Spain. If you want to meet us during the event, let us know!

New EU consortium launched to handle REACH graphene registrations

A new consortium (called the Graphene REACH registration consortium) was launched in 2017 to handle REACH graphene registration in the EU. The consortium members, The Sixth Element Material Technology, NanoXplore and Applied Graphene Materials announced that the joint registration dossiers for graphene and graphene oxide have been submitted to the ECHA.

EU REACH flag

The consortium is also preparing a JRD for reduced graphene oxide, and hopes to submit it before the end of 2018. The consortium issues a callout for companies (whether graphene producers or importers) to join the consortium or buy a letter of access to the new registrations.

Verditek secures funds to back graphene JV with Paragraf

Verditek, a clean technology company, is raising GBP2 million (USD $2.57 million), pre-expenses, for its new solar factory in Italy and a graphene project. The London-based cleantech company said that a UK institutional investor and a European-based family office took part in the placing, without revealing their names.

The funding will support the ramp up of the solar factory in Lainate, Italy and its working capital requirement. At the plant the company will make light-weight solar panels. In addition, Verditek said the proceeds give it additional financial flexibility to pursue the “very promising work” with Cambridge-based technology firm Paragraf as part of their graphene joint venture. The partners said in December 2017 they would work to develop graphene-based solar cells and modules.

A*STAR team uses graphene oxide to create a cathode for improved li-ion batteries

A*STAR researchers have found that incorporating organic materials into lithium ion batteries could lower their cost and make them more environmentally friendly. The team has developed an organic-based battery cathode that has significantly improved electrochemical performance compared to previous organic cathode materials. The new material is also robust, remaining stable over thousands of battery charge/discharge cycles.

An electron-deficient, rigid organic molecule called hexaazatrinaphthalene (HATN) was previously investigated as an organic cathode material for lithium ion batteries. However, its promising initial performance declined rapidly during use, because the molecule began to dissolve into the battery’s liquid electrolyte. A new cathode material, in which HATN was combined with graphene oxide in an attempt to prevent the organic material from dissolving, has now been developed by Yugen Zhang and his colleagues from the A*STAR Institute of Bioengineering and Nanotechnology.

Graphene Flagship partners design graphene-based phase modulators for faster mobile technology

Graphene Flagship Partners at the National Inter-University Consortium for Telecommunications (CNIT) in Italy, IMEC in Belgium and University of Cambridge in UK have designed and tested a graphene-based phase modulator that reportedly outperforms existing silicon-based ones.

Modern optical data and telecommunications employ phase modulators to increase the amount of data relayed and data rate efficiency, i.e. the speed at which information is relayed. Phase modulators traditionally work by grouping several bits of information into fewer symbols, or packets, reducing the overall size, or spectral width. The smaller the spectral width, the higher the data rate efficiency. However, this efficiency is reaching a maximum with silicon based devices, and so a novel solution is needed to bridge the gap between the increase in demand for data and the efficiency in transmitting it.

Versarien enters agreement with AXIA Materials on smart building and EV applications

Versarien LogoVersarien, the advanced materials engineering group, has announced that it has entered into a collaboration agreement with AXIA Materials to develop graphene-enhanced composite materials and smart graphene devices using both Versarien's proprietary Nanene graphene nano platelets and proprietary Graphinks graphene inks.

AXIA, based in South Korea, develops advanced thermoplastic composite material solutions under its LiteTex brand for the automotive, sports, electronics and building sectors, and produces pre-fabricated buildings under its Pixel Haus brand.

Talga and BillerudKorsnäs to develop graphene-enhanced packaging applications

Talga Resources logo 2017Australia-based advanced materials technology company, Talga Resources, has advised that it has signed a Letter of Intent (“LOI”) with BillerudKorsnäs, a Sweden-based multinational packaging company.

Under the LOI, Talga and BillerudKorsnäs will jointly explore the potential benefits of incorporating a Talga graphene (Talphene) product into a BillerudKorsnäs packaging application.

Graphene and MoS2 used to create novel artificial retina

Researchers at the University of Texas at Austin and Seoul National University have successfully developed and tested an ultrathin artificial retina, based on graphene and molybdenum disulfide, that could reportedly improve on existing implantable visualization technology for the blind. The flexible device could someday restore sight to the millions of people with retinal diseases. And with a few modifications, the device could be used to track heart and brain activity.

"This is the first demonstration that you can use few-layer graphene and molybdenum disulfide to successfully fabricate an artificial retina," Nanshu Lu, Ph.D., says. "Although this research is still in its infancy, it is a very exciting starting point for the use of these materials to restore vision," she says, adding that this device could also be implanted elsewhere in the body to monitor heart and brain activities.