Tech: Graphene, the revolution in telecommunications

Graphene has been around for more than 50 years, but the single-layer of graphite discovered in 1962 keeps getting into the headlines.

Lately, its applications in technology and its meaning for the Economics have become more and more important.

New research is now showing one new, revolutionary propriety of graphene, one that wasn’t even envisaged before. The sheet can light up in a rainbow of light that can be lit and regulated with electricity.

The study, published by Nature Nanotechnology magazine, combined the forces of Politecnico di Milano, IIT in Genoa and Cambridge University. The umbrella is that of European Graphene project, financed with one billion euros in ten years.

This new discovery means a revolution in telecommunications. New graphene optical switches could also harness new optical frequencies to transmit data along optical cables, increasing the amount of data that can be transmitted. This means the possibility of creating new devices for ultra-broad bandwidth applications.

“Our work shows that the third harmonic generation efficiency in graphene can be increased by over 10 times by tuning an applied electric field,” explained Giancarlo Soavi, lead author of the paper and researcher at the Cambridge Graphene Centre in the UK.