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.
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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