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Capabilities

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Explore our capabilities

CPI has developed capability and expertise in the safe handling, functionalisation and dispersion of graphene and other 2D nano particles into various materials including resins and polymers. With facilities and expertise in producing test pieces, we enable companies to understand how their graphene enhanced material will perform in application.

  • Safety, Health, Environment and Quality Handling

    The Graphene Application Centre is fully SHEQ optimised with unique nano powder handling capability. Using our systems, contact between Graphene dust and powder, and the operator are minimised through the use of an enclosed glovebox extraction system which minimises any potential risk for staff and customers.

    Our operators are fully trained in safe handling techniques and current best practise. We are working to generate industry standard practise around the safe handling of nano materials and graphene and through AssuredNano™, a recognised best practise guide and audit system for the safe handling of nano materials, we are developing methods for the improvement of safe working practises. Companies can utilise our facilities to handle graphene materials in safety without capital expenditure on safe handling equipment and can draw on our expertise to develop systems for safe handling in their own facilities.

    • Fire suppression systems for containment and safe powder handling
    • Solvent extraction systems
    • Easy change and empty systems
  • Nano Dispersion

    We have a comprehensive range of mixing techniques to cover a range of dispersion requirements from low to high viscosity at scales ranging from 10ml up to 60 litres.

    Nano particles can be dispersed under a range of shear conditions, from very low shear to provide efficient but gentle mixing without damage to particle morphology, to high shear for breaking down aggregates and distributing them quickly and efficiently. Expertise in surface engineering allows us to optimise dispersion through the use of surface active chemicals and ensure that products remain stable. At-line and in-line characterisation, which are unique to our dispersion techniques can be used to assess the level of dispersion throughout a substrate. Our equipment is ATEX rated for the processing of flammable liquids.

  • Functionalisation

    Via functionalisation, we can optimise the stability of dispersions and create nano-structures to achieve conductivity (thermal and electrical), flexural strength, and impact toughness for lightweighting.

    CPI has capability in low temperature plasma functionalisation of graphene and other nano-particles. Our expertise allows us to select the correct functionalisation for the particle and substrate.

    Through the addition of compatible chemical groups we can optimise the dispersion of nano-particles into various matrices, such as increasing wettability for optimum dispersion into polar solvents.

  • Nanostructuring

    The creation of nano-scale structures for incorporation into coatings and polymer matrices has the potential to deliver specific properties such as enhanced bulk conductivity or strength.

    Through a combination of expertise in colloid chemistry, surface science and mechanical structuring, CPI enables companies to develop nano-structures to achieve desirable properties in their graphene enabled products. Depending upon the properties desired, such structures may be co-flocculates of metallic and non-metallic nano-particles or co-flocculates of particles with different morphologies.

    Nanostructuring may also be achieved through the encapsulation of nano-particles to enhance compatibility and dispersion of the nano-particulates within a given resin binder system.

  • Characterisation

    CPI has a wide range of techniques and expertise useful in the characterisation of graphene and graphene enabled products. Characterisation is vital for manufacturers of graphene in order to understand the nature of the graphene being produced and its potential applications.

    We can characterise graphene through the use of Raman Spectroscopy and Scanning Electron Microscope to assess morphology and test for chemical properties, and electrical properties such as volume resistivity, powder thermal conductivity and surface energy.

    Through characterisation, we enable companies to produce a specification of graphene which will achieve the desired effects and properties in a final product, allowing them to ensure quality of their end product and repeatability of their manufacturing process.

  • Testing

    To measure whether the properties expected of a graphene-enabled product have been achieved, CPI has the capability to build test-pieces such as thermoplastic thin film, composite plaques, and printing on various substrates.

    Test pieces can be subjected to various destructive and non-destructive test methods for mechanical properties, as well as measuring surface charge, conductivity, surface roughness and surface tension.

    Companies can work with CPI to test products which are currently in the new product development process, as well as products currently on the market which may require improvement or adaptation to a new set of environmental or mechanical conditions.

Explore our capabilities