EDITOR: | April 23rd, 2018 | 1 Comment

Gratomic announces graphene tire collaboration deal with Perpetuus

| April 23, 2018 | 1 Comment
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Gratomic Inc. (TSXV: GRAT) announced that it has signed a letter of collaboration (“Agreement”) with Perpetuus Carbon Technologies Limited (“Perpetuus”) pursuant to which the two companies will develop and market graphenes and graphene hybrids for tire elastomers, whilst also exploring options to exploit polymer composites, energy capture and storage applications markets.

Pursuant to the Agreement, and as part of a phase 1 initiative, Gratomic will purchase and retain ownership of three specialised process tooling chambers at an aggregate cost of 300,000 British Pounds (418 K USD). These specialized tooling chambers will be housed in Perpetuus’ existing facility in the United Kingdom.

Perpetuus will also contribute its intellectual property, designed and engineered by Perpetuus and operate the specialized tooling chambers.

According to the agreement Gratomic will supply Graphite from the Aukam Graphite mine in Namibia. Gratomic and Perpetuus will share equally all proceeds of sales after deductions of operating costs and product purchasing costs.

Gratomic Inc. is an advanced materials company focused on mine to market commercialization of graphite products most notably high-value graphene-based components for a range of mass market products. Gratomic is collaborating with, Perpetuus Advanced Materials, a leading European manufacturer of graphene to use graphite from its Aukam project to manufacture graphene products for commercialization on an industrial scale.

This marks the commercialization of Perpetuus’ plasma-based reactor process for producing industrial scale, cost-effective, surface engineered Advanced Materials, commencing with graphene.

Test results of tires using graphene derived from plasma technology show:

  • Higher grip braking reduced by 2 meters at 50 kph, which is a significant safety feature;
  • Improved rolling resistance, which means longer free wheel & increased fuel economy. This is particularly important to fleet managers whose bottom line is highly dependent on fuel economy;
  • Comparison of graphene tires to a premium brand tire showed that the graphene tires outlasted the premium non-graphene tires by approximately 5,000 kilometers in real world road conditions; and,
  • Cost-effective as compared to carbon black.

Graphene is used as a substitute to carbon black, one of the 4 components of tires: rubber, nylon, steel and carbon black. Carbon black is mainly used as a reinforcing filler in rubber products.

The black color of tires comes from carbon black, a readily-available material with a superior surface to volume ratio that provides greatly improved wear characteristics and heat-dissipation capabilities when added to rubber compounds. Natural rubber is off-white in color, and in fact the first rubber tires were white. (Source: Wikipedia)

But graphene has a greater surface to volume ratio, which makes it more suitable as a filler in tires. Graphite is composed of many graphene sheets held together by Van der Waals forces to form rigid platelets several hundreds of nanometers thick. Because most of the graphene sheets in graphite which is formed of graphene stacks, are unable to interact with the polymeric matrix, its performance is limited unless they have been dispersed and functionalized, which means adding sticky molecules or atoms to its surface.

The dispersion of graphene from Perpetuus’ plasma technology permits to increase the functional role of graphene as a superior substitute for carbon black. Elastomer blends are prepared for realizing the maximum surface area along with empathetic matrix selective functionalization – facilitating the efficient mixing of graphene stacks into the tires elastomeric targeted matrix. Dispersion routes include high shear mixing melt intercalation & in situ polymerization.

The Agreement between the companies addresses the first Phase of the Project, with the other phases to be described in a joint venture agreement to be entered into between Gratomic and Perpetuus.


Dr. Luc Duchesne

Editor:

Dr. Luc C. Duchesne is a Speaker and Author with a PhD in Biochemistry. With three decades of scientific and business experience, he has published ... <Read more about Dr. Luc Duchesne>


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Comments

  • DanPro

    Great article.. really well written with plain English descriptions!! This is the future of tires!!

    April 25, 2018 - 12:27 PM

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