|Letter from the Editor - 2014 July|
Maturation is inevitable
This latest publication of the Graphene Council Newsletter marks our second edition—an anniversary of sorts. This year also marks the tenth anniversary of the publication in the journal Science of Andre Geim and Kostya Novoselov describing their successful extraction of single-atom-thick crystallites from bulk graphite.
With anniversaries often comes maturation. We hope this is true with our newsletter, but it is most assuredly true in the development of graphene.
This latest edition of the our newsletter reflects that maturation in graphene’s development with its coverage of the trend in graphene research towards finding manufacturing avenues instead of merely characterizing its properties. Increasingly research is attempting to find ways to make grapehene available for broad commercial use through better manufacturing techniques. In this edition, we cover five research developments that have occurred in the last few months that promise new ways to produce high-quality graphene in bulk quantities.
Whenever an emerging technology begins to mature it moves from initial hype to the inevitable backlash. In the last couple of months this backlash has been fueled somewhat by research indicating that graphene does present some risks if not properly handled. We spoke to one of the preeminent experts in the world on the risks and opportunities presented by nanomaterials, Dr. Andrew Maynard, who is the National Science Foundation’s International Chair of Environmental Health Sciences as well as the Director for the University of Michigan’s Risk Science Center, to sort out whether we should be concerned about graphene’s risks to our health and environment.
Also, with maturation comes the greater number of competitors you must face. This is definitely true for graphene, which is facing a veritable landslide of alternative two-dimensional (2-D) materials that promise to push graphene off the top of the mountain. Not only do we catalogue the key 2-D materials that are making a splash, but analyze some of the most recent research developments in the field.
Finally, with maturation comes knowing your limitations—and hopefully your advantages. In this edition, we look at the recent developments in applying graphene to optoelectronics, which is a field that plays to graphene’s strengths and avoids it weaknesses.
We hope you enjoy this latest edition of the Graphene Council Newsletter and recognize some maturation in us as well.