A nearly $1.7 million grant will advance the study of what engineers are calling “the next graphene,” which could play a pivotal role in optoelectronics and other devices. A prototype device with a 2-D channel, which will be used in this project. Courtesy of University of California, Riverside. A team from the University of California, Riverside, received the National Science Foundation grant to create and analyze a new class of 2-D films called van der Waals, as well as heterostructures incorporating such materials. The researchers expect to produce new techniques and practical applications using van der Waals materials including optical detectors, electronic switches and energy conversion. For more information, visit www.ucr.edu.