Physicists show unlimited heat conduction in graphene.

Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research in Mainz and the National University of Singapore have discovered that the thermal conductivity of graphene is unlimited. This discovery challenges the fundamental laws of heat conduction for extended materials; their results have now been presented in the scientific journal Nature Communications.

The French physicist Joseph Fourier had postulated the laws of heat propagation in solids that thermal conductivity is an intrinsic material property that is normally independent of size or shape. In graphene, a two-dimensional layer of carbon atoms, it is not the case, as experiments and computer simulations show; they found that the thermal conductivity logarithmically increases as a function of the size of the graphene samples. i.e., the longer the graphene samples, the more heat can be transferred per unit length.

This is yet another unique property of this wonder material that is also chemically stable, flexible, a hundred times more tear-resistant than steel and very light too.

In the micro- and nano-electronics, heat is the limiting factor for smaller and more efficient components. Therefore, materials with virtually unlimited thermal conductivity hold an enormous potential for these kinds of applications. Materials with outstanding electronic properties that are self-cooling too, as graphene might be, are the dream of every electronics engineer.

Stay Curious –¬† C.Costigan

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