Deal could bring graphene production method to market

A UK company working on a more environmentally friendly graphene manufacturing method has announced a deal to bring the technology to market.

South Wales-based Haydale has partnered with German company Diener electronic to market its machines that use plasma rather than acid to break graphite down into single sheets known as graphene, which is expected to revolutionise electronics.

‘The plasma treatment removes any impurities within the graphite and any amorphous carbon,’ said Ray Gibbs, Haydale’s group commercial director. ‘It then does what acid does: it intercalates into the layers and starts to strip them off.’

Each system uses Diener’s plasma reactors and Haydale’s spilt-plasma technology for breaking down the carbon and surface engineering the resultant graphene. This can also be used to produce other nanomaterials such as carbon nanotubes.

Haydale is already offering small batches of graphene for research use and plans to increase production to a scale of tonnes per annum using larger machines from the summer.

The company is now hoping to discuss licensing the technology to larger manufacturers for mass production.