A new University of Manchester spin-off is to develop and commercialise a range of industrial and consumer products based on graphene.
The new company, Graphene Enabled Systems, has said that it will demonstrate its first products – such as stronger and lighter composite materials, super-tough abrasion resistant coatings, special filters and high-performance electronic components – within its first 12 months of operation.
University of Manchester academics Sir Kostya Novoselov and Sir Andre Geim were awarded the Nobel Prize in 2010 for their work on isolating graphene. Graphene Enabled Systems, which is wholly owned by the university, plans to create a number of stand-alone ‘spin-out’ businesses which will licence the university’s IP for use in specific, well defined applications and markets. The company expects that these spin-out businesses will develop products, components and systems for industrial and consumer applications.
Initially, the main areas of activity will be focused on applications that would benefit from:
- Graphene’s ability to enhance the mechanical performance of composites
- The application of graphene and other 2D materials onto components using inkjet printing systems
- Production of membranes from graphene or other 2D materials which allow the selective filtration of ions and molecules
- Using graphene’s ability to carry and store electrical charge
- Development of corrosion and protection systems
Graphene Enabled Systems will deliver the first product demonstrators within 12 months of its formation and, according to the company, possibly even sooner. It will work in close collaboration with the university’s research teams, innovation and IP groups (UMI3 and UMIP), the National Graphene Institute (NGI) and, in 2017 and beyond, the new Graphene Engineering Innovation Centre (GEIC) and the Sir Henry Royce Institute for Advanced Materials, both of which will be based in Manchester.
‘The University of Manchester has been at the forefront of this scientific breakthrough and, based on this, we are now in a unique position to harness the full potential of graphene,’ said Andrew Wilkinson, CEO of Graphene Enabled. ‘In the coming year, we are looking forward to presenting our product demonstrators to industrial customers. We want to show them the commercial benefits that graphene enabled materials can bring to their markets. Graphene Enabled is also an excellent gateway for investors and entrepreneurs who wish become involved in this new materials revolution.’