XG Sciences and Graphene Nanoplatelets
In previous articles, we highlighted the current investment potential of graphene and looked at companies such as Applied Graphene Materials (LON:AGM) which has risen 90% since their November 2013 IPO. Another privately held company involved in graphene production with impressive partnerships and a broad customer base is XG Sciences.
About XG Sciences
Founded in 2006, Michigan based XG Sciences claims to be a world leader and first-to-market with their production of low cost, high volume graphene nanoplatelets. Investors in XG Sciences include Hanwha Chemical, POSCO, and most recently Samsung Ventures. Cabot Corporation is also a non-exclusive licensee of their production processes and a development partner. XG Sciences was spun-off from Michigan State University from which XGS has licensed a portfolio of existing intellectual property. With 30 employees, the company has a 10,000 square foot R&D facility and a 20,000 square foot manufacturing facility. This $8 million manufacturing facility can produce 80 tons per year of graphene nanoplatelets at a cost of $40 – $50 kg for tonnage quantities. XG Sciences has 550+ customers in 32 different countries which include the likes of Boeing, Lockheed, Honda, 3M, and General Motors.
What are Graphene Nanoplatelets?
Graphene nanoplatelets are particles consisting of multiple layers of graphene. They represent a new class of carbon nanoparticles with multifunctional properties. xGnP® brand graphene nanoplatelets have a very thin but wide aspect ratio as seen below:
This unique size and shape makes these particles especially effective at providing barrier properties, while their pure graphite composition makes them excellent electrical and thermal conductors. The applications for these particles are many, and include composites, EMI shielding, inks, coatings, and electrodes. In April of last year, XG Sciences announced the launch of a new generation of anode materials for lithium-ion batteries with four times the capacity of conventional anodes. As a vote of confidence, late last year XG Sciences was awarded $1 million in funding from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) for continued development of its XG SiG™ high-energy lithium-ion battery materials. XG Sciences has a notable customer base, strong partnerships, production capacity, and is, more importantly, demonstrating viable commercial applications for their new graphene nanomaterial. Low cost, high volume production will help accelerate the commercial adoption of graphene nanoplatelets and XG Sciences is a company to watch closely as the graphene story unfolds.
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