First measurement of its kind could provide stepping stone to practical quantum computing.
Everyone’s favorite wonder-material has moved beyond the boundaries of gravity in its latest round of testing. The material was brought aboard a parabolic flight, where a plane alternated climbing and diving in a regular rhythm to simulate micro-gravity for brief intervals of about 23 seconds at a time. These flights are often affectionately referred to as the “vomit comet,” as they tend to inspire some queasiness in humans. The graphene aboard, however, endured the environment and performed well.
Physicists at the University of Arkansas have invented a nano-scale power generatorthat could potentially use the movement of graphene to produce clean, unlimited energy. Called a Vibration Energy Harvester, this development provides evidence for the theory that two-dimensional materials could be a source of usable energy.
You may have heard of graphene, a sheet of pure carbon, one atom thick, that’s all the rage in materials-science circles, and getting plenty of media hype as well. Reports have trumpeted graphene as an ultra-thin, super-strong, super-conductive, super-flexible material. You could be excused for thinking it might even save all of humanity from certain doom.