Graphene Ink

What is ink?

Ink is a mixture of ingredients formulated to create a substance containing pigments or dyes that is used to color a surface. Inks usually come in liquid or paste form, and can be divided into four general classes of aqueous, liquid, paste and powder.

Most inks contain four basic components: colorants (that grant color and opacity), binders (mostly resins that serve to hold together other components), additives (like wax or chalk, used to grant specific traits) and carrier substances (like oils, which allow the ink to flow, spread and transfer). The ink industry is valued at over $10 billion as ink is somewhat ubiquitous and found in writing paraphernalia and print (including newspapers and books).

What are the common types of ink?

Inks are roughly divided into printing inks and writing inks. Writing inks, like the ones found in pens, started out using water-based dye systems and evolved into paste oil-based dyes that improve ink flow, and are generally more non smearing and quicker to dry than water-based systems.

Printing inks are categorized in two groups: inks for conventional printing (using a mechanical plate that transfers an image to the printed object) and inks for non-impact printing like ink-jet and electrophotographic technologies.

Conductive inks

Conductive inks contain components that provide the function of conductivity. Such components may be comprised of silver, carbon, graphite, or other precious metal coated base material. Common conductive inks can be classified into three categories: noble metals, conductive polymers, and carbon nanomaterials. Conductive inks can be used in various ways, including screen printing, flexographic or rotogravure, spray, dip, and more. A selection of conductive inks are offered on the market, to meet the demands of many applications: electronics, sensors, antennae, touch screens, printed heaters and more.

What is graphene?

Graphene is the thinnest and strongest material known to man. It is also an excellent electrical and heat conductor that has unique optical properties. Graphene is a 2D material made of carbon atoms, arranged in a honeycomb lattice. Its myriad qualities make graphene worthy of the title “wonder material”, with endless potential for all sorts of applications from membranes to electronics.

Graphene inks

Carbon nanomaterials offer many possibilities for printed and flexible electronics. The electrical properties of carbon nanotubes and graphene are particularly promising, and have been exploited in a number of applications from thin-film transistors (TFTs) and electrochemical sensors to supercapacitors and photovoltaics. Due to its high charge carrier mobility, superlative thermal and chemical stability and intrinsic flexibility, graphene has been demonstrated for a number of applications in printed electronics including chemical and thermal sensors, supercapacitors and more.

Graphene inks expand the possibilities for applications such as printed electronics, packaging and electronics, but often need to be specially formulated or adjusted for specific uses, like unique substrates or processing/printing methods (rotogravure, flexo, or screen printing processes etc.) as demands vary for the different uses. Screen printing, for example, usually requires optimal coverage capability while flexographic printing warrants rapid drying.

The graphene inks market

The graphene market can be a confusing one. While there are some companies that sell graphene inks, like Haydale and Vorbeck Materials, many other companies are involved in different aspects of the market. For example, Angstron Materials do not sell graphene inks but offer graphene nanoplatelets (GNPs) that can be dispersed in solvent to create graphene ink of sorts. Other companies are in various stages of developing graphene inks and accessory products. Graphene 3D printing can be done by using a liquid similar to ink, yet it is different than the inks that are used for other applications.

If you’re interested in graphene inks and wish to find the one suitable for your needs, contact Graphene-info - the graphene experts. We use our unique market familiarity and understanding to assist you in finding exactly what you are looking for.

Further reading

 

 

Latest Graphene Ink news

GrapheneUP launches next-gen graphene-enhanced formulations for textile industry

This is a sponsored post by GrapheneUP

Population growth and improved living standards require solutions for textiles with new functions to meet changing needs. Wherever they are used, graphene-based smart textiles provide added value in terms of improved performance or comfort. GrapheneUP®, a leading graphene company with the largest production of few-layer graphene in Europe, has developed and introduced into the market new graphene-based products for textile industry: INKGUP® Fabric and PRINTGUP®.

INKGUP® Fabric is graphene-based coating formulation for textile industry produced with few-layer graphene GUP®, designed to provide superior finishing properties. This formulation has been certified antiviral (ISO 18184:2019) also for SARS-CoV-2, antistatic and with excellent abrasion resistance and thermal regulation properties.

Several properties of textiles are improved using the formulations developed with GrapheneUP®, in particular the thermal regulation, abrasion resistance, EMI shielding, UV protection, excellent electrical conductivity, antibacterial and antiviral properties.

Read the full story Posted: Aug 24,2022

HydroGraph launches new graphene ink

HydroGraph Clean Power has launched its patented graphene ink. The Company sees this development as a significant step toward the production of inexpensive, foldable, and wearable electronics.

This is a significant milestone in renewable technology production. From touch screen displays, biosensors, radio frequency identification tags, electric vehicle batteries, and more, the technology’s applications are vast, said Stuart Jara, HydroGraph chief executive officer.

Read the full story Posted: Jul 14,2022

Versarien's tech to be used in new Umbro training kit

Versarien has announced that its Graphene-Wear technology will be incorporated in Umbro's top-of-the-range Pro-Training Kit for the Spring/Summer collection 2023. Umbro and Versarien have been working on several projects since 2018, and this is the first one that will reach the market.

Versarien and Umbro say that the Graphene-Wear formula will enable wearers to experience enhanced thermal transmittance, increased moisture management and drying rate of the garments. The garments will have Versarien's Graphene-Wear™ trademark applied.

Read the full story Posted: May 10,2022

Haydale secures Innovate UK grant to develop smart composite tooling

Haydale has announced that it has been awarded funding of £186,403 by Innovate UK, the UK's innovation agency, to develop smart composite tooling for the aerospace industry using functionalized nanomaterials.

The ESENSE project (Out-of-autoclave self-heated tooling enabling temperature homogeneity and embedded graphene sensors) aims to enhance out-of-autoclave (OOA) manufacturing processes with monitoring and through-life sensing capabilities using Haydale's patented HDPlas functionalization process to develop high temperature inks and pressure sensors. The project is due to start in April 2022 and is expected to run for 24 months.

Read the full story Posted: Apr 11,2022

AMD announces further contract extension with U.S Army

In December 2020, Advanced Material Development (AMD) announced that it secured its first contract under the Defense Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL) Weapons Sector Research Framework (WSRF), worth £125,000 (around USD$166,700). Since then, AMD received a further award for its ongoing collaborative camouflage work with the United States Army.

Now, AMD announced that it has received further funding from the Office of the Secretary of Defense for its proprietary ChamEM signature management program collaboration with the US Army.

Read the full story Posted: Mar 24,2022

Researchers 3D print graphene-oxide soft robots

Researchers from China’s Harbin Institute of Technology have 3D printed a soft robot from graphene-oxide that is capable of moving backward and forwards when exposed to moisture.

3D Printing Graphene Oxide Soft Robotics image

The scientists combined Direct Ink Writing (DIW) 3D printing and constrained drying techniques to fabricate the soft robot, and were able to overcome the porosity, shrinkage and structure uniformity challenges previously observed when 3D printing graphene-oxide objects.

Read the full story Posted: Feb 24,2022

Haydale to collaborate with Cadent Gas and EIC on graphene ink-based heaters

Haydale has announced it will be collaborating with Cadent Gas and the Energy Innovation Centre to develop graphene ink-based heaters for low-power hot water. The £135,000 three-stage project will run for an initial 15 months.

The graphene solution has the potential to offer a low-power way to heat water when there is an interruption to the gas supply. Currently, the provision of fan heaters and hot plates to vulnerable customers without a gas supply can be expensive and challenging, particularly for elderly or disabled customers.

Read the full story Posted: Feb 17,2022

Haydale secures SMARTCymru funding for anti-counterfeiting technology

Haydale has announced that it has been awarded a SMARTCymru grant from The Welsh Government that will enable the Company to progress with the development of its anti-counterfeiting ink technology, PATit.

The Project has a total cost of £169,000 and is expected to take six months to complete. The SMARTCymru grant, which is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund, will cover about 50% of the anticipated project costs.

Read the full story Posted: Jan 12,2022

Versarien reports its financial results for H1 2021, is scaling up its production facilities

Versarien announced its interim financial results for the six months ended 30 September, 2021. Revenues were £3.82 million (up 41% from £2.71 million in H1 2020), while reported net loss was reduced to £3.11 million (down from £4.34 million in H1 2020). At the end of the period, Versarien had £3.46 million in cash and equivalents.

Versarien uses graphene-enhanced concrete in a residential setting image

The company is now focused on two main application areas, textiles and concrete - for which it sees excellent opportunities in the near future. Versarien is increasing its production capacity. It has recently acquired graphene manufacturing assets in Spain, which will provide an additional 100 annual ton capacity, it has ordered equipment that will enable it to increase graphene ink production capacity by 12,000 liters per year and it has signed a lease on a new dedicated graphene production facility in Gloucestershire.

Read the full story Posted: Dec 07,2021

Nanotech Energy to build new campus to expand manufacturing capabilities of graphene batteries

U.S-based graphene batteries developer Nanotech Energy is reportedly planning to expand its facilities and develop a 517-acre campus within the Tahoe Reno Industrial Center. The first building is slated to open in Q4 2022.

The high-volume facility will significantly increase Nanotech Energy’s manufacturing capacity to produce and scale its patented, non-flammable Graphene-Organolyte™ batteries and other graphene-powered products, including EMI (electromagnetic interference) shielding, transparent conducting electrodes, conductive inks, conductive adhesives and silver nanowires.

Read the full story Posted: Nov 11,2021