By Cameron Chai
Alexander Balandin, an electrical engineering professor at the UC Riverside Bourns College of Engineering and a research team from the University of Texas at Austin and China-based Xiamen University have demonstrated that the thermal characteristics of graphene that has been isotopically engineered is far better than that of natural graphene.
According to a researcher, Balandin it was found that the optical, electrical and other physical characteristics of isotopically pure graphene are not modified but the thermal conduction characteristics are substantially improved. Hence, isotopically pure graphene can be used for several practical applications while ensuring that material cost is kept low. In order to develop a precise thermal conductivity theory in graphene as well as other two-dimensional crystals, data obtained from heat conduction experiments on isotopically engineered graphene is very essential.
The optothermal Raman technique was used to measure the thermal conductivity. The current research is significant as there is a practical requirement for materials having superior thermal conductivity. In order to design advanced ICs and three-dimensional electronics, materials with high thermal conductivity are required. First it will be used in specific applications like thermal interface materials for packaging of chips or flexible displays or transparent electrodes in photovoltaic solar cells.
Within a few years, it will find applications in computer chips such a heat spreader or interconnect wiring for example as interconnect wiring or heat spreaders. Other electronic applications such as analog high-frequency transistors that are used in radar, wireless communications, imaging and security systems also benefit.