Removing carbon dioxide from natural gas to reduce emissions, creating biosensors to detect molecules and enhancing night vision goggles – the potential applications of graphene seem endless.
But what are the biggest challenges in getting the one-atom-thick material out of the lab and onto the factory floor?
This September, Horizon talks to scientists who are turning graphene into membranes that can strip impurities from water, and we find out how one of the big hurdles is working out how to grade graphene.
And we hear from the scientific director of graphene-maker Graphenea, who believes that the graphene market could be extremely attractive for companies once applications start to come online.
In 2013, the EU launched the EUR 1 billion Graphene Flagship - its biggest-ever research initiative - with the goal of developing applications for graphene within a decade by bringing together researchers from academia and business.
For more information http://graphene-flagship.eu/
Graphene production could become a very attractive market for small- and medium-sized enterprises, according to Dr Amaia Zurutuza, scientific director of the graphene production company Graphenea, but it might take a while.
Pure graphene is impenetrable to even the smallest atoms but with a few adjustments it is giving rise to a new generation of permeable membranes, with possible applications from water filtration to reducing power station emissions.
The world looks very different from this time last year. The coronavirus pandemic has highlighted the centrality of science, research and innovation, accelerated some changes already in the works, but also exposed our weaknesses. In September, Horizon looks at how the pandemic is reshaping Europe in areas including health research, work, tech, transport and food – and how research can contribute to Europe’s recovery over the coming years. We will also be covering the European Research & Innovation Days at the end of the month, which will bring together scientists, policymakers, entrepreneurs and citizens to debate how research and innovation can ensure that the transition to a post-coronavirus society is sustainable, inclusive and resilient.
In August, Horizon looks at one of the features that makes Earth unique and habitable: plate tectonics. We explore what we know – and still don’t know – about how the shifting plates beneath our feet shape our planet. We speak to researcher Dr Kate Rychert, who wants to understand what makes a plate plate-like, and delve into one of the outstanding mysteries in the subject – how and why plate tectonics began. We find out about the link between mountain formation, erosion and climate change, and we look at what moonquakes and marsquakes can reveal about tectonic activity elsewhere.
European governments need to provide investment on a ‘wartime footing’ to stimulate a post-coronavirus economic recovery, but also need to redefine economic success to incorporate climate and social goals, the European Research and Innovation Days conference has heard.
The Covid-19 crisis provides an opportunity to reshape Europe’s economy, conference heard.
'Frontier research' scientists share how they are fighting Covid-19.
Dr Kate Rychert studies ocean plate structures.