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Scaleup for the production of graphene oxides

By Tetsuo Satoh |

Graphene-oxide-based materials are lamellar carbon compounds that are approximately 1-nm thick, and are expected to show excellent properties for various functional materials, such as innovative battery materials, lubricants, water-treatment membranes and catalysts. However, because these materials have been synthesized by the oxidation of graphite under severe conditions (requiring a strong oxidizing reagent and an acidic solvent), the mass production of these materials has been held back by major challenges. Now, Nippon Shokubai Co. (Osaka and Tokyo, Japan; www.shokubai.co.jp) has resolved various problems associated with the oxidation reaction, making it possible to scale up production “several dozens of times” more than laboratory scale. The achievement, performed in collaboration with Okayama University and support from the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO; Kawasaki City, Japan; www.nedo.go.jp), enabled the company to prepare materials in quantities sufficient for application development. Three types of materials are available: hydrophilic graphene oxide as a water dispersion, with surface areas of 420 m2/g; hydrophobic reduced graphene oxide as a solvent dispersion and powder, with conductivity…
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