Stronger than steel? No, it’s not a superhero, but new graphene light bulbs may light up your home more cheaply and effectively than others.
Graphene Lighting, a Canadian-financed company, has developed a new bulb using the ultra-strong carbon graphene, which was first discovered in 2004 by two scientists who later won the Nobel Prize in physics. Since graphene’s discovery, groups the world over have begun studying its properties and potential. Graphene is a single layer of carbon atoms arranged like a honeycomb, which makes it stronger than steel yet still thinner than human hair. Some of its other properties include its fire resistance, flexibility, and conductivity.
Following a standard incandescent bulb design, the new “miracle” light’s filament is coated with graphene. Projected to cost less and last 10 percent longer than traditional LEDs, according to The BBC, the next-generation bulb is surely set to jolt its competition when it hits the market in a few months.
One of the manufacturer’s directors, Professor Colin Bailey, is also deputy vice chancellor at The University of Manchester in England, which houses The National Graphene Institute. Because of its many potential consumer and commercial uses, the British government has already invested millions of dollars into this research, as has the European Regional Development Fund. Over 35 companies worldwide have already partnered with the university to develop graphene-related projects, according to the BBC.
“The graphene light bulb will use less energy. We expect it to last longer. The manufacturing costs are lower and it uses more and more sustainable components,” Professor Bailey told the BBC.
With a bright future, the super-material could one day propel more-efficient forms of transportation and equip thinner, lighter, faster, and tougher smart devices, though right now it’s still difficult to manufacture in large quantities.