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Graphene, a Material 200x Stronger than Steel, Can Now be Made from Soybean Oil

Graphene, which is made of a layer of tightly-packed carbon, is light, 200 times stronger than steel and more conductive than copper.

With its super qualities, it has the potential to be used in everything from electronics, to solar cells, to medicine.

But it is very difficult and costly to make beyond the lab.

Many production techniques involve the use of intense heat in a vacuum, and expensive ingredients like high-purity metals and explosive compressed gases.

Now a team of Australian scientists has detailed how they turned cheap everyday ingredients into graphene under normal air conditions.

They said the research, published today in the journal Nature Communications, may open up a new avenue for the low-cost synthesis of the highly sought-after material.


  • MANHATTAN — Forget chemicals, catalysts and expensive machinery — a Kansas State University team of physicists has discovered a way to mass-produce graphene with three ingredients: hydrocarbon gas, oxygen and a spark plug.

    Their method is simple: Fill a chamber with acetylene or ethylene gas and oxygen. Use a vehicle spark plug to create a contained detonation. Collect the graphene that forms afterward.

    Chris Sorensen, Cortelyou-Rust university distinguished professor of physics, is the lead inventor of the recently issued patent, "Process for high-yield production of graphene via detonation of carbon-containing material." Other Kansas State University researchers involved include Arjun Nepal, postdoctoral researcher and instructor of physics, and Gajendra Prasad Singh, former visiting scientist.

  • GrumpyGuyGrumpyGuy Member
    edited January 2017
    Looks like two unique methods to produce this super-material.  Its potential applications are numerous and interesting!
  • Matt_ADMIN_Matt_ADMIN_ Administrator
    Anything that diverts soybean production away from natto is fine in my books!
    "...Say, 'GOD is sufficient for me.' In Him the trusters shall trust." (Quran 39:38)
  • Anything that diverts soybean production away from natto is fine in my books!
    *Prime Minister Abe frowns towards your house*
  • Matt_ADMIN_Matt_ADMIN_ Administrator
    He probably needs to eat a lot of natto each day to work up the courage to put forth the ideas that he does
    "...Say, 'GOD is sufficient for me.' In Him the trusters shall trust." (Quran 39:38)
  • I bet he hates natto, but because it's a traditional Japanese food he forces himself to eat it every morning - hence his constant grumpy demeanor.
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