WET-SPINNING OF HIGHLY CONDUCTIVE AND MECHANICALLY ROBUST GRAPHITE OXIDE FIBERS
Winn Huynh, Jee Youn Hwang, Jaime Torres, Richard Kaner.
University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA.
Graphene’s extraordinary electronic, thermal, and mechanical properties have generated interest in engineering and materials science because of its potential applications in devices such as nanoelectronics and biosensors. However, challenges remain in translating the microscale properties of graphene to the macroscale, including but not limited to large-scale synthesis and fabrication. We have discovered that liquid crystalline dispersions of graphite oxide can be wet-spun into fibers and reduced into graphene either by chemical reduction or laser scribing. Because of this, graphene is convertable into functional materials such as batteries and other electronics, allowing its favorable properties to find their way into everyday devices. In this study, we determine whether graphite oxide can be used as a surfactant to aid in the dispersion and subsequent wet-spinning of graphene composites. We have synthesized various composite materials of graphite oxide with carbon nanotubes (CNTs) and poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene) polystyrene sulfonate (PEDOT-PSS), a conducting polymer. We will soon measure their conductivity and mechanical properties to determine if graphene composites can outperform graphene alone in all metrics. These composites will provide the framework for next-generation fibers for the microelectronics and aerospace industries.