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Sundsvall 2020-03-10


"GRAPHENE CAN INCREASE PERFORMANCE SIGNIFICANTLY"



Hello Britta, and welcome to 2D fab! Could you tell us about your background?

– I moved to Sundsvall from Germany just over ten years ago to work at Akzo Nobel. In 2010 I met 2D fab’s CEO Sven at the Mid Sweden University, where I studied to get a master’s degree in chemical engineering. Sven was my mentor, and we did a great lot of research on graphene together. I got my PhD in Engineering Physics in 2017 and now, when I am not working for 2D fab, I am doing research on supercapacitors at the University. Oh, and also, I am a mother. I have two girls, two and four years old – adorable but a handful at times!


What does your work at 2D fab entail?

– I work on characterizing graphene, for example by measuring particle size and surface area. I am also researching how we can use graphene in lithium-ion batteries. We know graphene can increase performance significantly if we manage to find a good way to implement it in batteries. It is challenging but fun, I really enjoy working at 2D fab!


What do you think are the most fascinating qualities of graphene?

– I have to say the strength. Graphene in unbelievably strong, even though it is so thin. I am also fascinated by the fact that it is a nano material – which as a group are so hard to specify – with such a large amount of possible application areas.


In what applications do you believe we will find graphene in the future?

– It is hard to predict, but I come from the energy research community and I really believe graphene has a future in energy storage and harvesting. Not only batteries, but solar cells and nanogenerators as well. I also believe in graphene-enhanced polymers. Graphene is such an incredible material, and we, as a community, have not been able to test everything yet. There are so many exciting applications yet to be discovered, tested and developed!


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"When the price is coming down, the potential markets are huge"
Graphene offers large potential for future batteries
Meet the 2D fab team


Sundsvall 2020-01-20


"WHEN THE PRICE IS COMING DOWN, THE POTENTIAL MARKETS ARE HUGE"



Hello Kajsa, and welcome to 2D fab! Tell us about your background and experiences.

– I hold a M.Sc. in Chemical Engineering and have spent the last nineteen years working as production engineer and in different managerial roles. Prior to joining 2D fab, I worked as production manager for Expancel at Nouryon (formerly AkzoNobel). As a person I am curious. I love to learn and in teams optimize productions to achieve the best results possible. That is also what I look forward to the most at 2D fab, we don't just manage products, we also develop them!


What are your responsibilities at 2D fab?

– As Production Manager I will keep developing our manufacturing process, together with Roland and the rest of the team of course. I have only been working here for a week, so what my exact duties are, remain to be seen. Right now, I spend most of my time overseeing the final assembly of our new production plant.


In your view, what are the greatest challenges and possibilities in graphene commercialization?

– The greatest challenge right now is the price. Graphene is too expensive. This makes potential customers and partner less eager to buy graphene and develop new products. But the price is coming down, and when it does the potential markets are huge. I especially believe in graphene in batteries and composites. Graphene can for example be used in cars, making them lighter and more energy efficient.


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Graphene offers large potential for future batteries
3 advantages in graphene enhanced plastic composites
Pilot runs at 2D fab's new premises show great result


Sundsvall 2019-12-19

3 ADVANTAGES OF GRAPHENE ENHANCED PLASTIC COMPOSITES


The history of plastics is long, but it would take until 1907 before the first fully synthetic plastic material was patented. Ever since, plastics has developed and found its way into an infinite range of products.

Today it is possible to mix plastic composites with graphene, giving the material new and better properties. We have listed three advantages of plastic composites containing graphene.


1. New applications

When graphene is mixed with other materials its properties are transferred, creating a unique cocktail within material technology. For example, graphene has very good thermal and electrical conductivity. Transferring these properties to plastic composites pave the way for many new applications.


2. Improving properties

By adding graphene in plastic composites, you can improve the properties the material already has. For example, graphene can increase a material’s strength and improve resistance to supersonic impacts, the latter being important in ballistic applications, such as body armor systems and shields.


3. Good processability

The production is compatible with existing manufacturing processes, so there is no need to make major changes to current production line e.g. injection molding or extrusion of thermoplastics. The process also increases productivity and cause less tool wear, due to graphene contributing to better thermal conductivity and being a very gentle additive compared to others commonly used, e.g. fiber glass.


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2D fab and SAAB has developed new components for the aviation industry
2D fab in collaboration to develop next generation of composites for bulletproof products
Pilot runs at 2D fab’s new premises show great result


Sundsvall 2019-12-12

GRAPHENE OFFERS LARGE POTENTIAL FOR FUTURE BATTERIES


SIO Graphene recently cohosted “Graphene Battery Workshop” where research and industry within the graphene and battery sectors met to discuss what impact graphene can have on next generation batteries. One of the invited speakers was 2D fab's CEO Sven Forsberg.

The demand for energy production and storage increases as the global population grows. In order to reach the goal of a fossil-free society batteries and supercapacitors need to become more sustainable. Researches from around the world participated at “Graphene Battery Workshop” – arranged by SIO Graphene, Uppsala University and Battery 2030+ – to discuss graphene’s role in sustainable future batteries.

Matching graphene and silicon
There are a number of ways to apply graphene in batteries. For example, researchers at Chalmers are working with lithium-sulphur batteries, using a catholyte with the help of a graphene sponge. 2D fab’s approach on the other hand is to use graphene as a means to change the energy carries from graphite to silicon as anode material in lithium-ion batteries. This allows greater energy capacity possibilities since silicon can store more energy than graphite can.

– Silicon offers very low electrical conductivity. This, however, is not a problem since graphene has very high electrical conductivity, compensating for silicon’s deficiencies in this area, Sven Forsberg explained at Graphene Battery Workshop.

Another known problem with silicon in batteries is that silicon undergoes major volume changes during charging and discharging. Graphene is likely to be the solution to this as well, since its strong structures minimizes the effects of silicon’s expansion.


Cost-efficiency – a key aspect
2D fab's method to produce silicon-graphene anodes is cost-efficient and compatible with commercial fabrication methods.

– We have a number of ways to manufacture the silicon nanoparticles needed in this type of anode materia, keeping the costs down. Graphene also enables a more energy-efficient and cheap production of the anodes themselves, based on paper manufacturing technology, which is a key aspect for practically all industrial production processes, explained Sven Forsberg.

One of the main goals with Graphene Battery Workshop was to get actors from industry and research to interact. In order to get graphene into batteries and out on the market collaborations are required. Sven summed up his speech at the workshop on a hopeful note.

– We have a value chain with a number of knowledgeable industrial partners, with whom we will make graphene in batteries a reality.


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