Imagine Intelligent Materials Pty Ltd, Sydney, (Imagine IM) opened Australia's first commercial graphene plant in Geelong. The pilot plant will produce up to 10 tons of graphene per year. Imagine IM says it has developed a graphene coating technology that enables the production of a world-first conductive geotextile that will be manufactured and launched into the Australian marketplace by Victorian-based Geofabrics Australasia later in 2016.
"Graphene is a material that is critical to the future of advanced manufacturing globally. Imagine IM's focus is on developing applications that utilize the amazing properties of graphene to enable the manufacture of transformative smart textiles, fibers and membranes. The challenge is to enable integration into manufacturing and to deliver product at scale. Our initial pilot plant will serve the needs of Geofabrics over the next two years and will provide sufficient graphene for other products that are currently in R&D. The commissioning of this plant positions Imagine IM as one of the few graphene companies anywhere in the world with a path to market. Geelong can now consider itself the Graphene capital of Australia,” said Chris Gilbey, CEO of Imagine IM.
Interest in commercial applications for graphene is growing rapidly. BCC Research estimates the global market for graphene products will reach US$1.3 billion by 2023, and Reports and Reports forecasts that in 2018, US$100 million of graphene will be sold for use in RFIDs, smart packaging, super capacitors, composites, ITO replacement, sensors, and memory.
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