Graphene Discovery Could Lead To New Barrier Coating

Way back in 2004, graphene was initially isolated. Since then, research has continued concerning graphene and its possible uses. Studies have been done on its use in water purification and filtration. It is also being considered for coating and composite utilization involving oil and gas applications.

Graphene’s Inception

Graphene was isolated when, in order to polish a large graphite block, a roll of Scotch tape was used at the University of Manchester. Thin flakes ended up being picked up by the tape. The creation of graphene resulted when those flake s were eventually turned down. The Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded for this discovery and credited to Konstantin Novoselov and Andre Geim.

Graphene Coating And Composite

A polymer chemistry expert recently delivered a talk regarding polymer-graphene composites being used in the gas and oil industry. The reason that polymer-graphene is being investigated for its possible use as a barrier is because of the composite’s improved performance.

A study is being done on the use of polyamide/graphene laminates for supercritical H2S and CO2 barrier protection. The study compares GNP (graphene nanoplatelet) paper placed between a couple of discs of PA11 (polyamide 11). This includes layered structures utilizing GNP/PA11 composites that are melt processed, as well as the transfer of CVD (chemical vapor deposition) onto PA11. This selection of materials was resultingly tested as a barrier for a CO2 (carbon dioxide) feed mixture with 1.48% H2S (hydrogen sulfide), under pressures up to 400 bar, at 60°C.

The Result of the Study

Compared to other tested graphene and GNP containing barrier materials, the PA11/GNP laminates created a barrier performance of a superior level. By more than an order of magnitude, apparent CO2 permeability was reduced by the GNP laminate. Additionally, H2S permeability was reduced to levels that were undetectable for all pressures up to 40MPa.

The effects of GNP papers of thicknesses that are varied will be the focus of further work (the undertaking of which is already set for exploration). The processing of GNP’s into barrier films, and methods of doing so, are also set to be investigated.

Published study results (such as those named above) have already begun to surface.

Graphene Water Filtration

So, what about graphene makes it perfect for use in water purification and filtration? Studies were initiated regarding this development as a result of continuing research on graphene being done at the University of Manchester. This research included an examination of how the substance’s hexagonal atomic bonds made it impermeable for almost every liquid or gas. The one exception was water molecules. And that led to more purification and water filtration studies using graphene.

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