Scientists at Rice University have created a new process that can convert trash, waste food, plastic and other materials into graphene, hopefully facilitating a “massive reduction of the environmental impact of concrete and other building materials.” A new process introduced by the Rice University lab of chemist James Tour can turn bulk quantities of just about any carbon source into valuable graphene flakes. The “flash graphene” process is quick and cheap and can convert a turn of waste for a fraction of the cost used by other bulk graphene-producing methods.
“This is a big deal,” Tour said. “The world throws out 30% to 40% of all food, because it goes bad, and plastic waste is of worldwide concern. We’ve already proven that any solid carbon-based matter, including mixed plastic waste and rubber tires, can be turned into graphene.”
“By strengthening concrete with graphene, we could use less concrete for building, and it would cost less to manufacture and less to transport,” he said. “Essentially, we’re trapping greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide and methane that waste food would have emitted in landfills. We are converting those carbons into graphene and adding that graphene to concrete, thereby lowering the amount of carbon dioxide generated in concrete manufacture. It’s a win-win environmental scenario using graphene.”
“Scientists at Rice University are using high-energy pulses of electricity to turn any source of carbon into turbostratic graphene in an instant. The process promises environmental benefits by turning waste into valuable graphene that can then strengthen concrete and other composite materials.”
For more details on the flash graphene process jump over to the official Rice University website by following the link below
Source : Rice Uni
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