Why graphene hasn’t taken over the world…yet

– [Cory] It may not look like it, but I’m creating one of the strongest and most versatile materials
on Earth, graphene. You’ve probably heard buzz about it. Graphene made big waves back in 2004, and it’s knocked around
science news ever since. – A global race for graphene. – You know, it’s not just
limited to one little thing. – One of the greatest
discoveries of the 21st century. – [Man] Graphene could be the key to a lot of mind blowing technology. – But that was almost 15 years ago. Where are all of the graphene
wonders that we were promised? The bulletproof armor,
the graphene circuitry, the ultra light airplanes,
the graphene medicine, a space elevator? – [Female Voiceover] So the
next time man walks on the moon, maybe he’ll take the
elevator to get there. – Clearly, a lot of the
buzz never went anywhere. But graphene does exist. Engineers have gone to
making one fleck at a time, to producing it by the barrelful. – Do you want to try to pick it up? – Sure. – [Cory] So the graphene
revolution we were promised may already be in motion. – You can stretch and pull on it, and in fact, a good way to visualize it, is that if you had a big
enough sheet of pure graphene, you could hold up a soccer
ball on just one atomic layer, and that’s insane. – [Cory] Joseph Meany is
an analytical chemist, who coauthored a book about
the promise of graphene. He explained to us that
graphene is just carbon, like coal, or graphite, or diamond. The difference is in how the carbon atoms are bonded together, and in the unique shape
the material takes. – [Joseph] So it’s just
a single atom sheet, there’s no z dimension
to speak of in graphene. And these atoms of carbon
are arranged in interlocking or tessellated hexagons,
kind of like a chicken wire. The bonds between the carbon atoms are actually extremely strong. – Back in 2004, researchers
in the UK discovered that they could produce graphene with some shockingly simple tools. A hunk of a particular type if graphite, and some standard issue tape. – [Joseph] Yeah, it was
just a very large hunk that you could hold in your
hand, and they took the tape and put it down onto the
surface of the graphite, and just lifted it off. – From there, they used chemicals
to dissolve away the tape, and they were left with
tiny flakes of graphene with remarkable properties. It’s impossibly light,
yet incredibly strong. It’s flexible, and it’s a
highly efficient conductor of electricity. The researchers won a Nobel Prize in 2010, and today in 2018, literally
everything around us is built or enhanced with graphene. Okay, not quite. – [Phillip] Yeah, I think
it’s very easy for the media and for the press to seize on any new scientific or technological development as something that’s
going to be be transformative, you know, scientists come with
these amazing new materials and then everything changes, and of course it never
really happens that way. – [Cory] Phillip Ball is a
reporter who’s written a bunch about the graphene hype machine. And I asked him to throw
some cold water on the story. – [Phillip] Hello? – Hi, is this Phillip Ball? – [Phillip] It is, yes. – Hi, how are you doing? This is Cory calling from the Verge, – [Phillip] Hi, hello, Cory. Of course with any new technology, the reality is it generally
takes years to develop it. It would be unreasonable
to expect graphene to transform our lives overnight. – The uphill battle for any new material is that it can’t just be better
than existing technology, it has to be much better. Phillip says that’s
the issue with graphene replacing silicon in electronics. – [Phillip] Certainly there are companies who are exploring its use as a conductive electronic material. But of course we already
have such materials, and graphene has really
got to have big advantages over what we have already
if it’s going to displace what is already well
established, mature, technology. – But that’s not to say that
graphene hasn’t gone anywhere in 15 years. We found some engineers
who are making materials with graphene today,
materials that could one day even end up in space ships. The company is Vorbeck Materials, and their president, John Lettow, showed me how far they’ve come
with graphene mass production and he gave us a free sample. Literally it’s like floating in the vial. – And so if you open that up, you can take out, this is a
bag of about 1.5 kilograms of graphene fits in a 30 gallon container. So it’s very light,
sort of very voluminous, in it’s sort of raw state. – [Cory] Vorbeck is introducing its manufactured graphene powder to all sorts of industrial
and consumer products, like RFID tags, clothing, and even rubber. So you take the graphene,
you blend it into rubber, and the rubber they use,
sort of big blenders almost, that beat the rubber around,
mix the graphene into it, and what you get by mixing
the graphene with the rubber is very high temperature capabilities, and also very high strength. – Thinking about an application for this, you talked about space ships right? – Right. – You’re going through
extremely high temperature to extremely cold
temperature in out er space, you don’t want rubber that
would expand and contract and lose its strength over time. – Exactly. – This material won’t do that? – That’s exactly right. – [Cory] And on the electronics front, Vorbeck has created graphene based inks that can be printed en mass
on standard printing presses. When printed on water proof
fabrics, they can be washed, heated, ironed, wrinkled, and twisted, without damaging the circuits. This is extremely promising for the future of graphene based wearable electronics, which John says we should be
on the lookout for in 2019. – What we really hope is
that we can walk into a room, five years from now, and
most people in that room will have an article of clothing that has graphene wearable
electronics in it. – So there are big things
happening with graphene, we just have to be patient, and we can’t believe
everything we read about it. And for what it’s worth,
we’ve been here before. – [Phillip] It’s this sort
of long standing notion of a wonder material. I think it does go back to
the dawn of the plastic age in the 1920s and 1930s. You know, you saw all the
same kinds of promises made for them, that they were going to
be these wonder materials that would do everything. – I just want to say one
word to you, just one word. – Yes sir? – Are you listening? – Yes sir, I am. – Plastics. – [Phillip] Plastics, you know, they clearly had a huge impact and they do all kinds of useful things, but they have their limitations too. I guess it was really a sort of reference to this sort of longstanding
idea of wonder materials that were you know, going to
solve every problem. – Graphene might not be a wonder material any more than plastic is,
but the way John sees it, if graphene works well on its own merits, the hype won’t matter at all. – We really don’t want
our customers to care whether it’s graphene or not. What we want them to
know is that this thing, this device that you’re
using, works better, for longer, than anything
else you can get. And whether it has graphene in it, whether they advertise
it and use that hype as part of the marketing or not, is sort of completely irrelevant. It just is better. – Hey everyone, thanks for watching. If you have any ideas for a material you’d like us to check
out, please let us know in the comments below and
don’t forget to subscribe to our new Verge science YouTube channel, where we’re putting
out a video every week. Thanks!

100 comments on “Why graphene hasn’t taken over the world…yet”

  1. Verge Science says:

    Which graphene-based technology are you most excited for?

  2. John Morgan says:

    This guy thinks space is extremely cold… Maybe not the best person to turn to for reliable facts.

  3. Neike Vl says:

    What is graphene anyway🤔🤔🤔🤔🤔🤔🤔🤔

  4. Veli Karppinen says:

    Making it is difficult.

  5. channel name says:

    Graphene is the technology of the future and it always will be.

  6. Jack Campbell says:

    Dude can someone make some graphene charging cables

  7. Ty Johnson says:

    I thought this was a new drug ! Who else disappointed?

  8. Bernie R says:

    Is this the next mass problem in landfills or in our ocean all around the world … or is this Mother Nature friendly

  9. B P says:

    It's obvious the military is not ready to release it to the public they're using it for their needs

  10. MikeMcChiken says:

    "It doesn't expand or contract in hot or cold conditions" . Thats what makes the lipo last . I believe its 3x longer than a standard lipo . I use the Turnigy Graphene in race wings . Love them

  11. 74alex74 says:

    Nah this is Vibranium

  12. Jezreel Santos says:

    and in time they gonna use it in a war.. tsk tsk, I hope is not..

  13. Angel _ says:

    What the heck how did I get this video double recommended a year later

  14. Caio Rocha says:

    Bolsonaro curtiu o vídeo

  15. michael khaler says:

    The other material to check out it ALON. Supposed to be much better than glass for balastics and clearer than anything else out there.

  16. adam Hamilton says:

    According to Playboy genius tony stark its tensile strength is off the chart.

  17. gumikebbap says:

    7:15 mr. vorbeck stutters right there. It seems like he doesn't believe what he's saying hehe

  18. Xeno says:

    I just want John Wick's suit to be made from graphene

  19. DaReal90s says:

    7:00 – 7:10 is the motto every elite is going by
    Example; we don't care if it's real chicken or not , as long as it taste better

  20. Gary Z says:

    It seems to me that if you had a large enough sheet of graphene, you could cut a person in half with ease and if particles of graphene are floating around in a room, it would be dangerous to breath them in. how do graphene production companies control graphene from getting into the air?

  21. Austin Leonard says:

    I've done some research recently into material science and came upon this wonder. There's another development a lot like it I'd want to see a video for called buckypaper. I think it would be a good addition to your videos

  22. Elis J Alicea Figueroa says:

    Hype is irrelevant… This material is better.
    I love how that sounds.

  23. Fromunda Deez says:

    We'll see it once it's sold to China, mass produced and over used by slave type labor and shipped to US addresses for free in just 43 days 😂

  24. Bradley P says:

    Mr Smith is now running a graphene company?!

  25. 09 PandaGaming says:


  26. Elliott J says:

    Why the triangle ? Is this the narrative push ?

  27. Louis Wright says:

    MIT research scientists have already developed a method of continuous upscaleable mass production . It's just a matter of time and macro economics.

  28. Megacon says:

    I need some graphene
    I need to make my portable Oxygenater

  29. MaxGunter92 says:

    Use Chernobyls Graphite better…

  30. JLEmmanuel Antiporda says:

    Bullet proof clothes?

  31. Devansh Kheria says:

    Well… it's 2019… WHERE IS MY GRAPHENE TECH?!?!

  32. Ant Rami says:

    I thought that graphene was was what’s in my pencil

  33. Pepsi Propaganda Ministry says:

    Graphene doesn't exist cos it wasn't there

  34. //PRO NOOB\ says:

    2019 BOYS

  35. Morocco Killer says:

    But is it stronger than bedrock?
    Probably not

  36. Kunal Kulkarni says:

    Everyone is ignoring that graphene is basically made of lead, and hes thonking of making it wearable.

  37. Dom Gia says:

    Where do I invest?

  38. Guardian Beast says:

    It's hard to invest money in research on a new tech like Graphine, even if it is better, as you also have to convince the market it's good enough to switch to. The joys of capitalism is that it's hard to do R&D if you cannot guarantee a sizeable profit in a short amount of time. We could really use more investment, be it a government grant or via crowd sourced funding.

  39. jzay1899 says:

    Graphine + aerogel = graphogel?

  40. Pancho Panteras says:

    thnax for this, i got it

  41. afcomser says:

    why haven't solar cars taken over the world yet?

  42. DARK LORD says:

    Bedrock: am I joke to u

  43. Isabelle Macé says:

    HI! What is graphene behavior towards sound waves and music efficiency or performance ? Thank You.

  44. Usama Saneel says:

    I don’t know whether there is any connection between graphene and graphite. It reminds me about Chernobyl HBO miniseries.

  45. Israel Benítez Jiménez says:


    In this video they are using the same preview as you, and the title is the same, just in Spanish

  46. Clay .T says:

    The most be a huuuge amount of duck tape they use many miles 😂

  47. m bora says:

    Best info I ever have. Thanks Man.

  48. Akash Bansode says:

    I know Graphene from 1st year of Engineering since 2015 😊

  49. Rise73 G says:

    It's 2019.where's the graphene.

  50. GameIsLife says:

    Anyone know anything about graphene solar panels? pls tell me

  51. Terrance Barkan says:

    At The Graphene Council, we serve the global community of more than 25,000 materials scientists working with graphene. It is rapidly being adopted for commercial applications. Here is a short summary of where we are commercially today with graphene: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D94USUyH2nQ&t=36s

  52. Roland Abela says:

    just like fiber optic

  53. darshan mourya says:

    Graphene may be vibranium

  54. Mashiro Shiina says:

    Gold is still the shit

  55. Wolvercraft says:

    What about earth reinforced with graphine

  56. Pomato Totato says:

    No one landed on the damn moon, wake up people…

  57. Smit Patel says:


  58. Aierek says:

    So graphene is basically vibranium

  59. nikola tesla bear says:

    graphene technology is being suppressed. it can be made simply using plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition of methane gas onto a copper or silicon substrate.

  60. 1,000 subscribers with no videos says:

    Just wait until school kids start taking out the graphite on their pencils for a new kind of mafia

  61. Shuya Starwind says:

    And nothing happened

  62. Alec Nguyen says:

    Shout out samsung about to put out the graphene battery in a few years

  63. Guillermo Navarro says:

    Samsung is now looking at Graphene based battery, might take over soon enough.

  64. MegasXLX says:

    i came here because of Samsung making batteries with this material lol…. the world is changing xD

  65. Xxikron says:

    Graphene + Graphene = Diamond… u know… astroneer

  66. michael yanes says:

    If graphene can easily produce or easily can obtain then it will not make much profit, and many mining business for other raw materials around the world will effected heavily by this new element. In our world we live today no profit = no implementation. Like tesla's discovery about electricity. They rather destroy the earth to make profit rather than innovate to preserve it.

  67. nasar112 says:

    Samsung will start using it in 2021 for the phone batteries

  68. Hacked Games says:

    Oh girl it will, When samsung releases that graphene battery.

  69. Red Dead Ultimate says:

    We only have so much Lithium Ion in this world Graphene Batteries is gonna happen one day, just make sure the price is cheap when it does sell

  70. CowyC says:

    Combine this with nokia 3310 and it will be a revolutionary weapon

  71. Oratio G says:

    PLEASE hide the graphene IP away from you know who . 😑😑😑😑

  72. Exzotic c says:

    Wheres my 5 pound jet

  73. Asker bey says:

    There is a real material better than graphene and it is called "borophene" made of boron. The reason you haven’t heard it very much because lots of firm made huge investments in graphene. If you are interested in just google the "borophene" or just Click it https://www.technologyreview.com/s/613267/borophene-the-new-2d-material-taking-chemistry-by-storm/

  74. John Smitherson says:

    Can you say ultra thin phone and computer monitor?

  75. ST Ideas Football says:

    Samsung going to release smartphone with graphene batteries next year or in 2021 which could 45% increase in capacity and 5 times faster charging

  76. George Hwang says:

    Such a wonderful material, some day it will replace all the plastic material for our everyday use, but will it become an environmental hazard? we need to think ahead before it becomes an issue like the plastic.

  77. Eternal Zoom says:

    Verge Science: Graphene is almost here.
    Underground Scientists (A): "What you been working on the last 7 years."
    Underground Scientists (B): "Just a few things: Graphene-Boron Fiber, Super Steel, Aluminum-Steel, Aluminum-Titanium, Bucky Paper, Zylon-Carbon Fiber, Aerogel, Fullerene, Boron-Nitride, Lonsdaleite, Dyneema, Carbyne, Aerographite, Ultem. Can't wait till 2020's it's gonna be 10 times more new matterials."

  78. Junaid Ahmed says:

    https://youtu.be/1tbZkECybus batteries for satellites

  79. Parita Patel says:

    Excellent important innovation Technology information Really Appreciate Your YouTube video, Excellent info,

  80. GMT says:

    People complaining about no graphene tech when Samsung literally made a graphene battery 1-2 years ago.

  81. Gio2.0 says:

    Yoohoo Samsung finally anounced graphene batteries

  82. David Patel says:

    The UK researchers who first discovered it were in my home town Manchester, England. At the uni. Legends. We made the first computer too. Big up Manchester

  83. Floati says:

    thumbnail is sick

  84. Ahmed Abdala says:

    I am proud to see Vorbevk using the process I invented to make graphene for different emerging applications. I am also happy that I am pay me royalties for using my parents.

  85. Tague Relyea says:

    I have yet to see even a string of graphine

  86. Steve Wilcox says:

    For economy of scale manufacturing they have not figured it out yet. Besides if it is cheaper better faster you can bet the worlds corporate governments will never let it exist as cheaper better faster energy storage.

  87. David k says:

    Samsung graphene batterys, but you mentioned Plastics as if it was not revolutionary as if it promised more than what it is just wanted to mention it everything in our lifes is revolved around Plastics.

  88. Afiq Sallehi says:

    waiting for new upcoming smartphone with graphene Battery

  89. Michael Moewes says:

    The Spanish company Grabat is already producing graphene batteries. The latest is a car battery that has a range of 800km and recharges in 8 minutes.

  90. Mukesh Kumar says:

    1:11 SONDS like a SUCKER ball

  91. Marcus Gunter says:

    Cia is using it right now. We will have shirtpods in 20 years.

  92. urizon41 says:

    What?? Graphene is carbon? BAN IT!!!!!!

  93. Andi Muh Nur Ichsan says:

    samsung with graphine batteries

  94. Hunter Makoy says:

    You think graphene matches up to plastics? You fucking glue sniffer.

  95. James Dunsmore says:

    Make me a super hero suit


    Some discoveries and inventions are banned because our owners don't want us to reach some level of technology .
    I'm talking about people who were called Elohims , Gods in ancient times .
    Why , after the first mission on the moon we had other missions yes but were just quick , scoop some minerals off the surface and leave ?
    Ever wondered what's on the far side of the Moon ?
    We are just a genetic experiment going on and we are not allowed to go too far.

  97. Jeff Brown says:

    I have graphene infused, or however they are made, gravel tires for my bike. They are pretty awesome. They flex around corners until a certain point where they immediately stiffen and give amazing grip on the road. They also seem to be far more reliable against the nasty thorns we get all over the place in Phoenix. In comparison to my rear tire, a Kenda Small Block 8 – which is a highly rated and pretty expensive tire I have had less than one thorn get through my front graphene tire and dozens have gotten through the Kenda. I will be getting the graphene tires from now on they are pretty amazing and in this case $20 cheaper than the Kenda as well.

  98. Sandor Clegane says:

    Surprise surprise now we get another chapter in NCERT!

  99. kingsley anim says:

    Meanwhile Africa is comfortably sleeping waiting for development to fall from the sky

  100. watchulla says:

    15 yrs is a long time. This kills my enthusiasm for graphene. lol

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