According to a paper published on June 5, researchers are in the midst of developing a way to more efficiently cool electronic devices using graphene-based film. Developing an efficient method to cool electronics can help to prolong the lifespan of a device, as well as reduce the energy they use considerably.
Professor Johan Liu of Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden is leading the research on graphene-based film being used as a way to cool electronic devices. The findings of the research have been published in the journal of Advanced Materials.
Graphene is best known for its amazing strength, but it also has the ability to cool down silicon-based electronics. Roughly half of the energy computer systems require is used for the purposes of cooling the device, an issue that graphene could potentially solve.
The research compiled by Liu and his team report significant progress in reducing heat in electronic circuits. With graphene coating, the researchers were able to achieve 1600W/mK thermal conductivity levels. Liu states in the research paper, “We have solved this problem by creating strong covalent bonds between the graphene film and the surface, which is an electronic component made of silicon.”
Liu and his team experimented with several different materials and found that treating graphene with triethoxysilane molecules and a heating hydrolysis was the best way to create sticky silane bonds between electronics and graphene film.
This type of bonding is capable of doubling the thermal conductivity of the graphene, which could lead to a variety of new applications. “One example is the integration of graphene-based film into micro-electronic devices and systems,” Liu explains.
To be more specific, LED, laser, and radio frequency devices could all benefit from graphene for cooling purposes. Wearing electronic devices may benefit the most, as they heat up faster and can create discomfort for the user. Ultimately, the ability of graphene to cool electronics could lead to electronics that are faster, smaller, more energy efficient, and more powerful.