With the discovery of an easier way to produce graphene material a few years ago, the world of electronics promised to never be the same. The material is incredibly versatile and has uses for both its incredible strength and its ability to conduct electricity and heat. Additionally, the fact that it is capable of being transparent could allow for incredibly advanced touchscreens on future consumer products. And in the world of 3D printing, creating graphene-based filaments and printing materials is seen as a precursor to the ability to 3D print highly complex electronics. The promise of graphene 3D printing materials was so great that one of the primary resellers and researchers of the material, Graphene Laboratories, even spun off a new company, Graphene 3D Lab, which grew so quickly that they eventually purchased their original parent company.
In a recent shareholder update, Graphene 3D Lab Co-CEO Elena Polyakova discusses the future of the company, what the acquisition of Graphene Laboratories means for them and most notably the intention to open a new Industrial Materials Division.
In addition to the production and selling of graphene materials via the Graphene Supermarket, which came with the purchase of Graphene Laboratories, and the continued development of advanced graphene 3D printing materials with Graphene 3D Lab, the company will now have a third line of business. The Industrial Materials Division will be devoted to developing high volume graphene-infused polymers for applications in the automotive, robotics, drone, aerospace and military industries.
The first step of launching the new Industrial Materials Division was the development of a state of the art twin-screw extruder that was manufactured for them by science and research tech developer Thermo Fisher. Graphene 3D Lab has completed the installation and testing of the new extruder and is now ready to put it to work quickly producing new, highly accurate and advanced composite materials. The extruder is an important step in the manufacture and production of industrial-grade materials that have been infused with graphene. These new materials are being leveraged as lighter, stronger, and more flexible alternatives to existing products currently used in these industries.
The past year was a busy one for Graphene 3D Lab, and the new Industrial Materials Division is only the first of several newly-planned product lines and business opportunities that have been in the works. With the development of the new extruder technology, Graphene 3D Lab is able to produce these advanced polymer composites quickly, which will allow them to keep up with the rapidly growing demand for graphene-related materials. The past year was also spent expanding their ability to produce graphene materials, securing graphene-related intellectual property and integrating Graphene Labs into the 3D Lab business. The company sees itself in an ideal position to use their growing knowledge base to innovate and commercialize new graphene-related products.
“In 2015, we invested heavily in production equipment establishing our fully operational production line. Our first filament product, a 3D printable graphene conductor, is now established in the market. Our recent release of new magnetic and nylon filaments demonstrates our capacity to manufacture many specialized filament products. We expect to put out several more filaments with innovative properties in the upcoming months as we continue to increase our customer base. Our upgraded extrusion lines and increased production capacity will improve the profit margins on 3D printing products. In house production gives 3D Lab significant advantages in the specialty filament market. We can produce on demand, control quality and, where warranted, accept custom orders. Maintaining our own production capacity allows us to make proprietary filaments without exposing our IP or trade secrets,” said Polyakova.
The acquisition of Graphene Laboratories by Graphene 3D Lab was a sound financial move for the 3D printing startup and good news for their new Industrial Materials Division. Not only did Graphene Laboratories bring in $1,000,000 in revenue from the sale of graphene and other nanomaterials, but it gave Graphene 3D Lab access to their huge list of clients. The 10,000 name list includes notable tech companies and research universities like NASA, HP, Ford, GE, Apple, Xerox, Samsung, Harvard, IBM, MIT, Yale, and Stanford. Not only will this make it easier to sell their newly developed advanced materials to many of the world’s top scientists and technologists, but it offers them greater insight into where the materials industry will be heading and how they can keep up with it. Discuss this further in the Graphene 3D Lab forum over at 3DPB.com.