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While carbon already offers a wide range of applications in the form of graphite and diamond, the two-dimensionally structured modification “graphene” extends the portfolio of extremely stable carbon materials even further. Single-layer carbon films were first discovered by the English chemist Benjamin Collins Brodie in the mid-19th century, but the great potential of graphene was only truly uncovered by the Russia physicists Konstantin Novoselov and Andre Geim – winning them the 2010 Nobel Prize in the process.
Graphene involves carbon atoms being grouped in hexagonal rings to form a mechanically stable network. Viewed from a distance, the carbon honeycombs of graphene form a slightly corrugated surface. Graphene is as hard as diamond, yet as elastic as a film – making it the thinnest and one of the most promising materials in the world. Its electrical hyper-conductivity makes graphene particularly attractive for use in microelectronics and computer technology. The GK Group has been producing graphene by the kilo for years.