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New Graphene Film Brings Fast, Low-Cost Communications

MELBOURNE, Australia, May 12, 2014 — A new type of graphene is showing potential for ultrafast telecommunications.

The new high-quality continuous graphene oxide thin film could lead to ultrafast telecommunications. Courtesy of Swinburne University of Technology.

A team from Swinburne University of Technology has developed the micrometer-thin continuous graphene oxide film, which demonstrates optical nonlinearity suitable for high-performance integrated photonic devices used in communications, biomedicine and computing.

Researchers created the thin film by spinning a coated graphene oxide solution onto a glass surface. Through a laser-induced reduction process, they created microstructures on the graphene oxide film, which allowed them to tune the nonlinearity of the material.

A schematic of the laser-reduced reduction process used to create the new graphene oxide thin film. Courtesy of Advanced Materials.

Existing techniques for optical and telecommunications require the fabrication of individual components, which then must be integrated together. The new method simplifies the process and reduces costs, as less lab time and materials are needed.

The researchers are also working to develop a functional device in which the new graphene material can be applied.

The work was funded by the Australian Research Council’s Discovery Early Career Researcher Award. The research is published in Advanced Materials (doi: 10.1002/adma.201304681). 

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