Graphene – the strongest material known to science – is used to create everything from condoms to night-vision contact lenses. Now, thanks to the ingenuity of The Graphene Company, paint containing the world’s “thinnest, strongest and most conductive” substance is hitting shelves in the UK. The new lime-based paint is incredibly thin, beneficial for the environment and capable of making your home, or any building, more efficient.
Because Graphenstone is composed of a lime-base with a hexagonal lattice of carbon atoms one atom thick thanks to the inclusion of graphene, the lime-based paint has superconductivity, which means it can improve the thermal regulation of buildings. As Dezeen reports, this means the invention lowers the necessity for heating and air conditioning.
According to The Graphene Company director, Patrick Folkes, ”When used on interior wall surfaces, rather than heat being radiated through the walls, the graphene within the paint captures the heat. It then conducts the heat through the paint, and across the whole Graphenstone-painted surface of interior walls. This enhances the insulation measures used in buildings by slowing heat conduction through walls and out of buildings.”
Because graphene is one atom thick in the paint, less is required to achieve a durable finish that is resistant to corrosion. One liter of paint would cover two eight-meter-square coats, says The Graphene Company.
An additional benefit is that the paint is extremely eco-friendly. With a base made from 98 percent pure lime, the paint purifies the surrounding air as it absorbs carbon dioxide. For this reason, the company boasts it is “the most sustainable and eco-friendly paint in the world”.
“Sustainability is becoming more and more important as people realise the damage that acrylics do to the environment throughout the manufacturing process and its use on walls,” said Folkes. “Graphene’s inclusion in paints, coatings and other building materials exponentially enhances hardness, durability, compression, tensile strength, elasticity, and coverage.”
After the paint is applied, a hard shell forms as the lime hardens up in the carbonization process. According to Folkes, the initial consistency is a “little bit watery.” Over a period of 10 days, however, hard coverage is provided. The best part? No fumes are released in the process.
Already, the product has been used to coat the walls of hospitals, hotels, and schools. As demand for the graphene paint increases, it will likely be sold elsewhere in the world.
Images via The Graphene Company