From IPOs to ICOs: The graphene companies raising capital with cryptocurrency

The amount of money that blockchain related start-ups are raising through initial coin offerings (ICOs) has surpassed funding raised from traditional venture capital, with over $3.5 billion generated last year alone from this new investment model (1) (2). A wide range of industries including finance, healthcare, entertainment and real estate has been experimenting with incorporating blockchain technologies and now it seems that even graphene companies are claiming to have applications. But what is the use-case for blockchain in the world of graphene and should investors be wary?

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Graphene: A matter of quality

Last year saw the world's first ISO standard for graphene being published which defines the terminology used to describe the material. Soon after, there were good practice guidelines for characterisation also released by the NGI and NPL. As a result, the industry is now able to achieve more robust testing and validation of graphene products. It is therefore perhaps worth considering what impact these tools for quality assessment will have on the rate of commercial adoption for graphene. As I will aim to outline in this essay, defining quality is harder than it appears and there are other critical components besides which must not be overlooked.

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Is China still leading the graphene race?

Much attention has been given to the number of patent applications filed around the world for graphene technology as an indicator of progress being made in the field by different countries. It has been reported that China holds the largest number of patents on graphene. Now the latest research from Fullerex which reveals the number of active graphene producers in each country, also puts China on top.

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Nanotechnology: Doing more with less (Part 2)

Rising global consumption is widely acknowledged by major government and academic institutions to pose a severe threat to the security of the world's natural resources and environment. Is human civilization on a collision course with collapse, driven by overconsumption, resource depletion and irreversible damage to the ecosystem or are production technologies changing and improving so rapidly that resource productivity and sustainability will increase sufficiently to avoid such a disaster?

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Nanotechnology: Doing more with less (Part 1)

Rising global consumption is widely acknowledged by major government and academic institutions to pose a severe threat to the security of the world's natural resources and environment. Is human civilization on a collision course with collapse, driven by overconsumption, resource depletion and irreversible damage to the ecosystem or are production technologies changing and improving so rapidly that resource productivity and sustainability will increase sufficiently to avoid such a disaster?

Read more...