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Will Laser Induced Graphene Make Batteries Obsolete?


If you are like me and not up to date in the technology world then you have probably never heard of graphene. Well graphene is a thin layer of pure carbon matter. It is a single, tightly packed layer of carbon atoms that are actually bonded together in a hexagonal pattern. This type of organic material can be produced with low costs, is 207 times stronger than steel, and one of the thinnest compounds known. It is also one of the best electrical conductors around, which is why scientists have been researching how graphene might eventually replace the battery.


Scientists compare graphene with lithium-ion batteries

Scientists have been working with graphene to see how it can be used in technology. They have found that batteries might be replaced with laser- induced graphene made supercapacitors, used for storing power. In fact, researchers at Rice University in Houston, Texas have been working on ways to make micro superconductors out of laser-induced graphene. Unlike the usual lithographic process, LIG-produced supercapacitors take only minutes to make, and the only materials needed are a polyimide plastic sheet and a computer operated laser. Researchers discovered that the computer operated laser would burn everything on the polyimide, except the carbon from the top layer, where graphene remains. An official statement from lead researcher, James Tour, was given during a press release. Tour stated that, “It’s a pain in the neck to build micro supercapacitors now. They require a lot of lithographic steps. But these we can make in minutes: We burn the patterns, add electrolyte and cover them.”

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