Graphene is a new material, based on carbon, that exhibits surprising electrical, optical and mechanical properties, due to its two-dimensional structure. Its discovery gave a Nobel Prize in 2010 to two European scientists, Profs. Andre Geim and Konstantin Novoselov. The number of publications and patents on graphene has been sharply increasing in the last years, and significant R&D investments are being made in Europe, USA and especially Asia. The coordinator of this proposal and his associates have been collaborated closely with the Nobel Laureates for a number of years on the mechanical properties of graphene and have produced a number of seminal publications.
In this proposal, we involve a number of Greek groups with renown international expertise in various fields of science and technology of carbonaceous materials in order to
- make lead ways in the preparation of large graphene sheets using CVD and other pertinent methods,
- investigate further single and multilayer graphenes under axial tension and identify- for the first time- their mode of failure,
- measure and model the compressive failure of single and multilayer graphenes as a function of layer thickness and lateral support,
- fabricate and test novel conductive graphene-based composites with thermoplastic/thermosetting matrices,
- examine the stress transfer problem in the graphene/ polymer nanocomposites using the technique of laser Raman microscopy developed in the lab of the coordinator, and
- fabricate devices (field emitters and solar cells) based on graphene with optimized opto-electronic properties.
In all this endeavour, the group will collaborate closely with Prof. Novoselov who has also accepted to be "external researcher" in the project and to spend three months in the lab of the coordinator. This is a truly multidisciplinary proposal that involves chemical and mechanical engineers, physicists and organic chemists with a proven track record in high calibre research.