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Molecules/Matter & Energy

Sticky graphene, dried-up coffee, a panda pregnancy test and more in this week's news

11:05am, July 24, 2011

Graphene glue
Graphene, a sheet of carbon only one atom thick, is unusually sticky. The energy required to peel it from a surface is 10,000 times that of a typical micromechanical structure, a new study finds. Steven Koenig and colleagues at the University of Colorado Boulder calculated carbon’s ability to adhere by covering holes in a piece of silicon oxide with graphene patches, using gas to increase the pressure inside the holes and measuring the shape of the patches blistering outward. The stickiness may be due to graphene’s remarkable flexibility, which allows it to behave much like a liquid coating a surface, the researchers report in an upcoming Nature Nanotechnology. —Devin Powell

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