The Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI) and the National Graphene Institute (NGI) at The University of Manchester have published a joint paper on the potential of graphene in aerospace.
In consultation with a range of stakeholders, the ATI and NGI have brought together a sector perspective of the benefits of working with graphene and the potential market opportunities available to UK aerospace companies.
Graphene was first isolated in 2004 and subsequently the Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded to two Manchester scientists in 2010. The two-dimensional material has the potential to positively impact aircraft performance, cost and fuel efficiency.
The safety and performance properties of aircraft could be significantly improved by incorporating atomically-thin graphene into existing materials used to build planes, while the reduced weight of the material could have a positive impact on the fuel efficiency of the aircraft and, as result, the environment.
In an exclusive introduction to the INSIGHT paper, Sir Richard Branson said: “The potential for graphene to solve enduring challenges within the aerospace sector presents real opportunities for the material to become disruptive, and a key enabler in future aircraft technology. We need to accelerate the opportunity for the UK to realise the benefits from graphene by creating a portfolio of graphene-related research and technology projects which if undertaken would lead to real impact in our aerospace industry.”