One of graphene’s key properties that is often underappreciated is its ability to block all kinds of gasses and liquids. A pristine sheet of graphene is, in fact, impermeable to even the smallest of molecules, hydrogen and helium. This shielding property of graphene may have significant impact on many aspects of our daily lives.
As an example, take the metals that make up our cars, planes, and boats, support our bridges, and build our homes and offices. Many of these metals corrode or rust due to the constant bombardment of water vapor and oxygen from the surrounding air. Graphene resists this bombardment and can prevent or greatly reduce the degradation of the underlying materials. Furthermore, due to its nano-scale nature, graphene will actually create a maze-like effect where each oxygen molecule must travel great distance to ever reach the metal.
This barrier nature of graphene materials can be expanded beyond metals to more everyday items. Food packaging, for instance, is an area of huge significance. Every year, billions of dollars of food goes to waste because of insufficient packaging. By incorporating graphene materials into the plastic packaging, food manufacturers can extend the shelf life of the materials; saving both money and food.
And moving in a completely different direction, the barrier properties of graphene can be put to use in a range of chemical and gas detectors. These detection devices “sense” a change when a molecule interacts with the sensor material. The fact that molecules cannot squeeze through the graphene sheet means that every molecule that interacts with the graphene is a molecule that is detected; leading to extremely accurate and sensitive sensors.
Angstron Materials believes that this barrier property of graphene must be overlooked no longer. By incorporating our advanced graphene materials into a range of coatings and composites, Angstron can take advantage of the shielding effect of graphene.
Contact Us to learn more about our how graphene can be used as a barrier material in your application!