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Southern Manufacturing

Nanotek Patents New Nano Graphene Materials

12 February 2010

Nanotek Instruments has been granted a patent for its new high-performing class of meso-porous nanocomposites, which will be produced by Angstron.

The technology is based on the company’s breakthrough discovery of nano graphene platelets (NGPs).

NGPs offer improved performance properties, which include a combination of very high Young’s modulus, strength and surface area, superior thermal and electrical conductivity, lower density and less weight. Nanotek say that NGPs are also resistant to gas permeation. As a result of these properties, Angstron could help to develop products ranging from fuel cells to structural composite applications.

Scientists report that the newly developed nanocomposite provides a superior supercapacitor electrode material for uses that include hybrid electric vehicles, transportation and energy storage.

The NGP-based nanocomposite is said to exhibit high levels of capacitance and electrical conductivity as well as demonstrating chemical stability and low mass density. According to Nanotek, both NGPs and NGP-based nanocomposites can be mass produced cost-effectively when compared to carbon nano-tubes and fibers. Supercapacitors containing this advanced material offer the potential to supplement a battery used in an electric car to provide bursts of power needed for rapid acceleration, which has been a significant technical hurdle for the commercial viability of battery-powered cars up to present.

In addition, supercapacitors must also be able to store sufficient energy to provide an acceptable driving range. The new NGP-based material makes it possible for a supercapacitor to meet weight and cost targets while combining adequate energy and power with a long cycle life.

Angstron will provide the meso-porous NGP nanocomposites in two forms: NGPs coated with a thin layer of conducting polymer or surface functional groups and NGPs bonded by a conductive binder, coating, or matrix material such as a polymeric carbon. The platelets in these products are comprised of a sheet of graphite plane or multiple sheets of graphite plane with a thickness less than 10 nm and an average length, width, or diameter smaller than 500 nm. The binder or matrix material bonded to the platelets to form the nanocomposite material create a surface area greater than 500 m.sup.2/gm.

In addition to providing sample materials and scale-up, Angstron partners with customers to help manufacturers identify optimal designs to help manufacturers harness the advantages of nano compositions and manufacturing processes.





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