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Published on February 17th, 2014 | by James Ayre


Artificial Graphene — Material Similar To Graphene Created From Nanometer-Thick Semiconductor Crystals

February 17th, 2014 by  

A potentially revolutionary new material, described as a sort of “artificial graphene,” has been created by researchers at the University of Luxembourg.

The material — which is essentially the same thing as graphene, except that instead of carbon molecules, nanometer-thick semiconductor crystals are used — should lead to improvements to a wide variety of different technologies, across a broad spectrum of traits, according to the researchers. Of particular note to our readers are the potential applications in photovoltaic cells, LEDs, and communication technologies.

Artificial graphene Image Credit: Université du Luxembourg

Artificial graphene
Image Credit: Université du Luxembourg

The University of Luxembourg provides more info:

Graphene (derived from graphite) is a one atom thick honeycomb lattice of carbon atoms. This strong, flexible, conducting and transparent material has huge scientific and technological potential. Only discovered in 2004, there is a major global push to understand its potential uses. Artificial graphene has the same honeycomb structure, but in this case, instead of carbon atoms, nanometer-thick semiconductor crystals are used. Changing the size, shape and chemical nature of the nano-crystals, makes it possible to tailor the material to each specific task.

Researcher Dr Efterpi Kalesaki, of the University of Luxembourg, stated: “These self‐assembled semi-conducting nano-crystals with a honeycomb structure are emerging as a new class of systems with great potential.”

Researcher Prof Ludger Wirtz, head of the Theoretical Solid-State Physics group at the University of Luxembourg, added: “artificial graphene opens the door to a wide variety of materials with variable nano‐geometry and ‘tunable’ properties.”

The new findings were just published in the journal Physical Review X.

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About the Author

's background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy. You can follow his work on Google+.

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