Finding a new material "better" than graphene, promises to bring a revolution to battery technology.

   Scientists have discovered a series of new materials that are "superior" to graphene. It is predicted to create a revolution for the battery manufacturing field.


   According to Slash Gear, the researchers predicted a new carbon "lattice", similar to graphene but with a much more complex microstructure. The discovery could lead to better electric vehicle batteries. Graphene - the most exotic form of carbon - is considered a substance that could bring about changes in li-ion battery technology. However, the newly discovered material has the potential to create battery cells with higher energy density.


   Graphene is essentially a lattice of carbon atoms, small hexagons created when each hexagon binds to three of its neighbors (it creates a honeycomb-like structure). However, scientists have hypothesized that carbon atoms can also bond together to create structures other than the simple honeycomb form of Graphene.Once again the scientists mined the carbon atoms but in a new direction. They created a so-called "Biphenylene lattice" – this is the result made up of square and octagonal bonds in a lattice more complex than that of graphene. This new structure has different electronic properties and has many advantages over graphene.For example, while graphene is prized for its ability to act as a semiconductor, the new carbon lattice behaves more like a metal. In fact, with a width of only 21 atoms, the stripes of the Biphenylene lattice can act as conductors for electronic devices. While on a similar scale, graphene still acts as a semiconductor.

Larger than the storage capacity of current graphene-based materials.


   The anode of a Lithium-ion battery usually consists of graphite arranged on a copper foil. It is highly conductive and that makes for an efficient and long-lasting battery.


   However, a smaller, more efficient alternative based on this new carbon lattice could make cells more dense. That could allow electric vehicles and other devices to use smaller and lighter li-ion batteries.
Compared to graphene, figuring out how to produce this new version on a large scale is the next challenge. The current binding method is based on an ultrafine gold surface, on which the carbon-containing molecules are initially formed into hexagonal chains linked together. A reaction then links these chains into squares and octagons to create a structure different from graphene.

 "The new idea is to use fine-tuned molecular precursors to make biphenylene instead of graphene," explains Linghao Yan, of Aalto University. The goal is now to produce larger sheets of the material to understand its properties before considering practical applications.