Nanocomp Technologies, Inc., a developer of next-generation performance materials, announced on Feb. 19 it has successfully produced 3-foot by 6-foot sheets of carbon nanotube material.
At the core of Nanocomp's process is a technology for continuous, high-volume output of millimeter-long, highly pure carbon nanotubes that efficiently conduct both heat and electricity. By bringing this technology to practice using proven, scalable industrial processes, Nanocomp can now produce sheets of material at contiguous sizes of tens of square feet.
Nanocomp's materials possess a unique combination of high strength-to-weight ratio, electrical and thermal conductivity, as well as flame resistance that exceeds those of many other advanced materials by orders of magnitude. The resulting material can be a valuable addition to such applications such as electromagnetic interference (EMI) shielding, electrical conductors, thermal dissipation solutions, lightning protection and advanced structural composites.
In contrast to Nanocomp's millimeter-long nanotubes, other carbon nanotubes are short -- tens of microns long -- and are usually delivered in powder form. Short nanotubes have limited industrial use because they are difficult to incorporate into existing manufacturing processes and do not possess the high performance properties of long carbon nanotubes.
"The goal of our manufacturing scale-up has been to product ultra-pure material in increasing quantities, with consistency and reliability utilizing a fully automated process that doesn't require a Ph.D. to operate. We're confident that we're going to be in a position to offer the volume, material formats and quality that players across many industrial markets needs," said Mark Banash, Nanocomp's vice president of engineering.