Bendable, rollable, scrunchable - touch screen technology is on the move, and the scope for flexibility is just one of the possibilities that has emerged. With its many exciting properties, graphene is anticipated as a game changer for this shift. An EU-funded network is training a group of experts keen to harness this potential.
© #40662224 | Author: Mihai Simonia, 2018 fotolia.com
Thin, strong, flexible, transparent and a better conductor even than copper, graphene is inspiring research on possible applications in areas as varied as energy and medicine. In the EU-funded Enabling Excellence project, launched in April 2015, 13 early-stage researchers are honing their skills for research and innovation in the very specific field of graphene-based nanomaterials for tomorrows touch screens.
Activity in the project encompasses three main areas. In addition to advancing the understanding of graphene as a nano-object and the ways in which it can used for touch-sensitive displays, Enabling Excellence is highlighting ways of taking market-ready innovation forward.
The project is also helping its fledgling experts to refine their communication skills, which will stand them in good stead throughout their careers. This particular part of their training will enable them to engage more effectively not only with fellow scientists, but also with potential investors, clients and other stakeholders interested in their work.
In short, the project rests on three pillars: comprehension and control, commerce, and communication. As of March 2017, it had already led to the filing of three patents, with at least two more applications under consideration.
Enabling Excellence is a four-year endeavour backed by Horizon 2020s Marie Skłodowska-Curie actions programme. It is led by the French National Center for Scientific Research and also involves academic and private-sector partners in Greece, Spain and the United Kingdom.