When a scientist wants to get some graphene paper into his lab, he has to be a bit obsessive.
So, he needs to be able to produce it in a controlled environment.
But how do you get graphene paper that doesn’t have the properties of the stuff you are looking for?
Well, that’s where a Japanese company, Deki Electronics, comes in.
Its name sounds like the name of a sci-fi film, and it’s actually a Japanese electronic equipment manufacturer that has been producing a range of products for over 30 years.
But when it comes to graphene, its been a decade since a graphene-based material has been successfully produced in a lab.
So, when a scientist, for example, wants to make his own graphene in a factory, the first step is to find a lab that can process it.
And to do that, the company has to develop its own proprietary technology, the Deki paper, which is the result of years of research.
But what makes this paper so special?
Deki’s team of scientists has developed a technique for creating graphene that is able to withstand extreme temperatures, as well as high pressures.
“It’s basically a very fine-grained sheet of graphite,” says Deki scientist Akira Takahashi.
“You can get the graphene to shrink and then it can expand.”
The process can also produce graphene sheets that have a certain shape and size, making them suitable for printing, or for use in electronic devices.
And, because it can be produced in such a small space, its also environmentally friendly.
It’s not just the temperature that has a huge impact on the quality of the graphene, it also affects the chemical composition of the material.
“So, the better the temperature the better is the graphene,” says Takahash.
“But you can also control the chemical structure.”
The team developed their technique using a process called electrochemical vapor deposition, which means that the graphene is made of a chemical compound called graphene oxide.
It takes a lot of energy to make this material, but Deki is now working on ways to produce the graphene in smaller quantities.
“There are some limitations to this process, because you need to be very close to a source of heat, but we think it can potentially produce the material in the next decade,” says co-founder Takahasuke Tanaka.
The team has also developed a technology called polymer-organic composites, which are made of graphitic compounds, which the team hopes to commercialise in the near future.
It could be used for all sorts of electronic devices, including the upcoming graphene smartphone.
Deki has also been working on its own flexible, non-graphene paper.
And, as the team has shown, it can withstand extreme conditions.
But, if you want to make it into a useful product, you will need to find another supplier.
“The reason we are so confident in this material is that we have done many experiments, we have tried a variety of different types of graphene materials, and we have found that we can use these materials to make very flexible and light-weight electronic devices,” says Tanaka.
“But the key is that you need very, very high temperatures to make the graphene and the high temperatures also need to occur at high pressures to create the conductivity and the electronic properties of graphene.”
And that’s the main difference between the Dedios graphene paper and the others that have been developed.