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Graphene heals itself, powers our dreams and nightmares

Graphene heals itself, powers our dreams and nightmares
Terrence O'Brien
Terrence O'Brien|@TerrenceOBrien|July 10, 2012 10:22 PM

Slowly, but surely graphene is pushing our technological hopes, dreams and, yes, nightmares towards reality. The stuff is capable of extending battery life, generating electricity, powering high-speed data connections and super computer-worthy CPUs. It's water proof, stretchy, bendy and apparently self healing. (This space reserved for T-1000 reference.) Researchers at the University of Manchester discovered that, if you put a hole in a sheet of graphene, it simply stitches itself back together. This is thanks to carbon's tendency to latch on to other atoms, including its own, which can make the futuristic material difficult to work with, but gives it this highly unique quality. Thankfully, we're no where near self-healing robots. But, the discovery could lead to a simple method for molding it into almost any shape. Once pierced, the form of the mend is determined by the type of molecules introduced -- pure carbon simply regrows the perfect honeycomb structure, while a few foreign atoms can lead to "defects." Of course, if they're intentional and predictable, defects merely become "features." For more check out the source link.

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