Nanotechnology Now







Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


DHgate

Home > Press > Graphene nanoribbons an ice-melting coat for radar: Rice University discovery is cheaper, lighter and more effective than current deicers

A new compound created by Rice University and Lockheed Martin provides a thin, robust ice-melting coat for marine, airborne and other uses. The active element consists of carbon nanotubes “unzipped” into ribbons.Credit: Tour Group/Rice University
A new compound created by Rice University and Lockheed Martin provides a thin, robust ice-melting coat for marine, airborne and other uses. The active element consists of carbon nanotubes “unzipped” into ribbons.

Credit: Tour Group/Rice University

Abstract:
Ribbons of ultrathin graphene combined with polyurethane paint meant for cars is just right for deicing sensitive military radar domes, according to scientists at Rice University.

Graphene nanoribbons an ice-melting coat for radar: Rice University discovery is cheaper, lighter and more effective than current deicers

Houston, TX | Posted on December 16th, 2013

The Rice lab of chemist James Tour, in collaboration with Lockheed Martin, developed the compound to protect marine and airborne radars with a robust coating that is also transparent to radio frequencies.

The research was published this week in the American Chemical Society journal Applied Materials and Interfaces.

Bulky radar domes (known as "radomes") like those seen on military ships keep ice and freezing rain from forming directly on antennas. But the domes themselves must also be kept clear of ice that could damage them or make them unstable. This task is usually accomplished with a metal framework that supports and heats ceramic alumina (aluminum oxide), Tour said. But these materials are heavy, and metallic elements must be installed far from the source of radio signals to keep from interfering.

"It's very hard to deice these alumina domes," Tour said. "It takes a lot of power to heat them when they're coated with ice because they're very poor conductors."

Enter graphene, the single-atom-thick sheet of carbon that both conducts electricity and, because it's so thin, allows radio frequencies to pass unhindered. Spray-on deicing material that incorporates graphene nanoribbons would be lighter, cheaper and more effective than current methods, Tour said.

"This started when (Lockheed Martin engineer) Vladimir Volman saw a presentation by Yu Zhu, a postdoc in my lab at the time," he said. "Volman had calculated that one could pass a current through a graphene film less than 100 nanometers thick and get resistive heating that would be great for deicing. Zhu was presenting his technique for spraying nanoribbons films and Volman recognized the potential."

Pristine graphene transmits electricity ballistically and would not produce enough heat to melt ice or keep it from forming, but graphene nanoribbons (GNRs) unzipped from multiwalled carbon nanotubes in a chemical process invented by the Tour group in 2009 do the job nicely, he said. When evenly dispersed on a solid object, the ribbons overlap and electrons pass from one to the next with just enough resistance to produce heat as a byproduct. The effect can be tuned based on the thickness of the coating, Tour said.

In initial experiments, the team led by Volman and Zhu spray-coated a surface with soluble GNRs. "They said it works great, but it comes off on our fingers when we touch it," Tour said.

He found the solution in a Houston auto parts store. "I bought some polyurethane car paint, which is extremely robust. On a car, it lasts for years. So when we combined the paint and GNRs and coated our samples, it had all the properties we needed."

Lab samples up to two square feet were assembled using a flexible polymer substrate, polyimide, which was spray-coated with polyurethane paint and allowed to dry. The coated substrate was then put on a hotplate to soften the paint, and a thin GNR coat was airbrushed on. When dried, the embedded ribbons became impossible to remove. Tour said the researchers have also tried putting GNRs under the polyurethane paint with good results.

The 100-nanometer layer of GNRs — thousands of times thinner than a human hair — was hooked to platinum electrodes. Using voltage common to shipboard systems, the compound was sufficient to deice lab samples cooled to -4 degrees Fahrenheit within minutes. Further experiments found them to be nearly invisible to radio frequencies.

Tour said the availability of nanoribbons is no longer an issue now that they're being produced in industrial quantities.

"Now we're going to the next level," he said, noting that GNR films made into transparent films might be useful for deicing car windshields, a project the lab intends to pursue.

Volman suggested the material would make a compelling competitor to recently touted nanotube-based aerogels for deicing airplanes in the winter. "We have the technology; we have the material," he said. "It's very durable and can be sprayed on to heat any kind of surface."

Co-authors of the paper include Rice graduate students Abdul-Rahman Raji and Changsheng Xiang; Wei Lu and Carter Kittrell, research scientists at Rice's Richard E. Smalley Institute for Nanoscale Science and Technology; and Bostjan Genorio, a former postdoctoral researcher at Rice, now a visiting scientist at Argonne National Laboratory. Tour is the T.T. and W.F. Chao Chair in Chemistry as well as a professor of mechanical engineering and materials science and of computer science.

The Lockheed Martin Corp. through the LANCER IV program, the Air Force Office of Scientific Research and the Office of Naval Research supported the research.

####

About Rice University
Located on a 300-acre forested campus in Houston, Rice University is consistently ranked among the nation’s top 20 universities by U.S. News & World Report. Rice has highly respected schools of Architecture, Business, Continuing Studies, Engineering, Humanities, Music, Natural Sciences and Social Sciences and is home to the Baker Institute for Public Policy. With 3,708 undergraduates and 2,374 graduate students, Rice’s undergraduate student-to-faculty ratio is 6-to-1. Its residential college system builds close-knit communities and lifelong friendships, just one reason why Rice has been ranked No. 1 for best quality of life multiple times by the Princeton Review and No. 2 for “best value” among private universities by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance. To read “What they’re saying about Rice,” go to tinyurl.com/AboutRiceU.

Follow Rice News and Media Relations via Twitter @RiceUNews.

For more information, please click here

Copyright © Rice University

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related Links

Read the abstract at:

Tour Group:

Smalley Institute for Nanoscale Science and Technology:

Related News Press

Graphene

Fullerex launches 2015 edition of the Bulk Graphene Pricing Report January 26th, 2015

News and information

Nanoparticles Increase Durability of Concrete Decorations in Cold Areas January 26th, 2015

Iranian Researchers Boost Solar Cells Efficiency Using Anti-Aggregates January 26th, 2015

Detection of Heavy Metals in Samples with Naked Eye January 26th, 2015

Engineering self-assembling amyloid fibers January 26th, 2015

Videos/Movies

OCSiAl supports NanoART Imagery Contest January 23rd, 2015

Laser-generated surface structures create extremely water-repellent metals: Super-hydrophobic properties could lead to applications in solar panels, sanitation and as rust-free metals January 20th, 2015

Hydrogels deliver on blood-vessel growth: Rice researchers introduce improved injectable scaffold to promote healing January 20th, 2015

Going with the flow January 16th, 2015

DNA Origami Could Lead to Nano “Transformers” for Biomedical Applications: Tiny hinges and pistons hint at possible complexity of future nano-robots January 5th, 2015

Aerogels

Aspen Aerogels, Inc. to Present at the Needham Growth Conference January 8th, 2015

Aspen Aerogels, Inc. to Present at the Baird 2014 Industrial Conference November 4th, 2014

Obtaining Optimum Formulation in Soundproof, Thermal Insulators November 3rd, 2014

Govt.-Legislation/Regulation/Funding/Policy

Nanoshuttle wear and tear: It's the mileage, not the age January 26th, 2015

Visualizing interacting electrons in a molecule: Scientists at Aalto University and the University of Zurich have succeeded in directly imaging how electrons interact within a single molecule January 26th, 2015

The latest fashion: Graphene edges can be tailor-made: Rice University theory shows it should be possible to tune material's properties January 24th, 2015

Scientists 'bend' elastic waves with new metamaterials that could have commercial applications: Materials could benefit imaging and military enhancements such as elastic cloaking January 23rd, 2015

Discoveries

Visualizing interacting electrons in a molecule: Scientists at Aalto University and the University of Zurich have succeeded in directly imaging how electrons interact within a single molecule January 26th, 2015

Electronic circuits with reconfigurable pathways closer to reality January 26th, 2015

Nanoparticles Increase Durability of Concrete Decorations in Cold Areas January 26th, 2015

Iranian Researchers Boost Solar Cells Efficiency Using Anti-Aggregates January 26th, 2015

Announcements

Nanoparticles Increase Durability of Concrete Decorations in Cold Areas January 26th, 2015

Iranian Researchers Boost Solar Cells Efficiency Using Anti-Aggregates January 26th, 2015

Detection of Heavy Metals in Samples with Naked Eye January 26th, 2015

Engineering self-assembling amyloid fibers January 26th, 2015

Interviews/Book Reviews/Essays/Reports/Podcasts/Journals/White papers

Visualizing interacting electrons in a molecule: Scientists at Aalto University and the University of Zurich have succeeded in directly imaging how electrons interact within a single molecule January 26th, 2015

Electronic circuits with reconfigurable pathways closer to reality January 26th, 2015

Fullerex launches 2015 edition of the Bulk Graphene Pricing Report January 26th, 2015

Nanoparticles Increase Durability of Concrete Decorations in Cold Areas January 26th, 2015

Military

Detection of Heavy Metals in Samples with Naked Eye January 26th, 2015

The latest fashion: Graphene edges can be tailor-made: Rice University theory shows it should be possible to tune material's properties January 24th, 2015

Scientists 'bend' elastic waves with new metamaterials that could have commercial applications: Materials could benefit imaging and military enhancements such as elastic cloaking January 23rd, 2015

Laser-generated surface structures create extremely water-repellent metals: Super-hydrophobic properties could lead to applications in solar panels, sanitation and as rust-free metals January 20th, 2015

Aerospace/Space

Scientists 'bend' elastic waves with new metamaterials that could have commercial applications: Materials could benefit imaging and military enhancements such as elastic cloaking January 23rd, 2015

Teijin to Participate in Nano Tech 2015 January 22nd, 2015

Production of Special Nanocomposite in Iran with Application in Railways December 23rd, 2014

Lifeboat Foundation gives 2014 Guardian Award to Elon Musk December 16th, 2014

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE



  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More










ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project







© Copyright 1999-2015 7th Wave, Inc. All Rights Reserved PRIVACY POLICY :: CONTACT US :: STATS :: SITE MAP :: ADVERTISE