- ADVANCED MATERIALS Journal
- November 2011
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- Graphene constitutes a two dimensional sp2 hybridized carbon material with outstanding electrical and mechanical properties. To date, novel methods for producing large quantities of graphene and its derivatives (doped or functionalized graphenes, nanoribbons and nanoplatelets) are emerging, and research dedicated to the fabrication of polymer nanocomposites using graphenes has started. In this Research News, we summarize the synthesis and properties of graphene and its derivatives, and provide an overview of the latest research dedicated to the fabrication of polymer composites for different applications, including mechanical, electrical, optical and thermal. Some of the recently fabricated composites exhibit outstanding properties, however, it is vital to understand the chemistry and physics of the interphases established between the polymer and the graphene surfaces. The challenges in the fabrication of super robust and highly conducting composites using graphenes are also discussed. It is believed that graphene-based polymer composites will result in commercial products if their interphases and reactivity are carefully controlled.