Graphene could help reduce the energy cost of producing heavy water and decontamination in nuclear power plants by over one hundred times compared with current technologies, University of Manchester research indicates.
If you've ever drawn with a pencil, you've probably made graphene. The world's thinnest material is set to revolutionise almost every part of everyday life.
Fascination with this material stems from its remarkable physical properties and the potential applications these properties offer for the future. Although scientists knew one atom thick, two-dimensional crystal graphene existed, no-one had worked out how to extract it from graphite.
That was until it was isolated in 2004 by two researchers at The University of Manchester, Prof Andre Geim and Prof Kostya Novoselov. This is the story of how that stunning scientific feat came about and why Andre and Kostya won the Nobel Prize in Physics for their pioneering work.