Table of Contents Table of Contents
Previous Page  20 / 280 Next Page
Information
Show Menu
Previous Page 20 / 280 Next Page
Page Background

this nanomaterial, before detailing some of the

recent progress in the field of graphene and

related layered materials.

“Graphene was known for decades before the

groundbreaking physics experiments in

Manchester in 2004.What happened there ten

years ago is that fundamental physics

experiments in graphene exfoliated from bulk

graphite were performed, and proof was given

that charge carriers live in a two-dimensional

world in this material. This led to the 2010

Nobel Prize in Physics.

“Before 2004-2005, the graphene field was

niche. It then suddenly took the limelight,

especially in the field of fundamental physics.

Many physicists saw this material as a

playground that they could use without going

to CERN to carry out their experiments.

“The interest in graphene has exploded, though

it was only in 2008-2009 that researchers

really began to realise that the material can be

useful in many applications. During the last ten

years, many advances have happened in lab

experiments – almost every day, every week we

have seen major new advances in physics, in

devices, and in the understanding of the

fundamental properties of this material and the

over 500 related two-dimensional materials.”

Key investment

In January 2013, the then European

commissioner for the Digital Agenda, Neelie

Kroes, announced that ‘Graphene’ had been

selected as one of the two winning FET

Flagship projects. The Graphene Flagship would

receive €1bn of funding over ten years, half

drawn from the European Commission, whilst

the remainder was at the “regional, national or

transnational level”.

T

he Graphene Flagship is part of the EU’s Future and

Emerging Technologies (FET) scheme, which, according to

the European Commission, seeks to “turn Europe’s

excellent science base into a competitive advantage by uncovering

radically new technological possibilities”. Specifically part of the

FET Flagships, the graphene project aims to develop “a new class

of material beyond the era of silicon” and was announced as a

winner of a competitive process in 2013.

In April, Portal travelled to Manchester, UK, to attend the Commercial

Graphene Show 2015. On the sidelines of the event, Professor Andrea

Ferrari, chairman of the executive board of the flagship, detailed to Portal

the significant steps the EU had taken in funding graphene, the

importance of attracting more industrial players to participate in the

project, and its latest developments. In an interview following his keynote

address, Ferrari began by outlining a short history of the development of

I S S U E S E V E N

H O R I Z O N 2 0 2 0 P R O J E C T S : P O R TA L

www.horizon2020projects.com

20

S P E C I A L F E AT U R E : M AT E R I A L S

Growing graphene

The Graphene Flagship is the largest EU research project ever undertaken.

With a €1bn budget over ten years, it places the continent at the pioneering

edge of nanomaterial research

Ferrari told Portal that

the EU’s commitment

to the Graphene

Flagship is crucial to

the future of

the nanomaterial

© European Union, 2015

Professor Andrea

Ferrari