INVISIBLE to the human eye, thinner than a human hair and 200 times tougher than steel, the wonder material graphene features in a new Manchester exhibition.
Initially created in Manchester, graphene is a new material and the Museum of Science and Industry has held an exhibition to showcase its ground-breaking qualities.
The exhibition communicates to local and international visitors the history of graphene and its relationship with scientists and artists. This unique material has a potential to reshape the way we think, contribute to the next generation and manufacture in a host of areas – from technology to medical science.
Graphene is made from a single atom layer of carbon and was isolated at the University of Manchester by scientists in 2004.
Sarah Baines, the curator of the exhibition, said: “People knew about it in theory but they didn’t know if one atom layer of carbon would be stable. That’s why we used the terminology isolated rather than discovered. People already knew about it.”
Graphene has spread excitement throughout multiple industries. Its atoms are very familiar to humans. For instance, If you put loads of layers of graphene together you’ve got graphite like the one you find in a pencil.
Its innovative qualities have also secured it a place in nano-science .
Baines added: “It is strong, flexible and conductive all at the same time and that’s the really amazing thing about graphene.”
The exhibition shares a lot of information about graphene and demonstrates its history and qualities through a combination of materials.
Baines stated: “We’ve got a real combination of objects. We’ve got some historic objects and some art content which is really nice. We also include some science and historical science content. It is lovely to be able to include artistic material as well, because it is really important that artists and scientists can work together and inspire each other.”
The exhibition will take an international course. After it has been in Manchester will move to the Science museum in London and other venues internationally, including Hong Kong.
According to Baines the exhibition was created to teach about Graphene, but also, inspire people and showcase how science is about curiosity, thinking outside the box and doing something different.
If you are interested in science, art and new materials make sure you visit the Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester until 25 June 2017.