Last December Graphene 3D Lab announced that they had signed a research, development and royalty agreement with a Fortune 500 listed manufacturer. The agreement was to develop “multi-phased deliverables” within the following twelve months. The company involved in the deal has remained unnamed due to confidentiality agreements for what they are saying are competitive reasons. In addition to having absolutely no idea who Graphene 3D Lab had went into business with, they also declined to release any details of the specific research objectives that they are perfusing. The entire deal was all very mysterious, however not totally unprecedented in the tech and materials industries.
Graphene 3D Lab did disclose that when the research phase was completed, the results would need to receive the approval of the US Food & Drug Administration, and that any developed materials would be used to manufacture a consumer retail product. Unfortunately that doesn’t really shed much light on what exactly they’re doing. Given the company’s history, it is pretty likely that it will be a 3D printing material of some sort, but the exact nature of it is really anyone’s guess. The FDA actually regulates a lot of different types of products, and given the incredibly wide range of applications that are being explored for graphene, they legitimately could be developing anything.
“Graphene is a complex and amazingly functional material with properties that provide unique advantages in a wide variety of manufacturing situations. We expect graphene to become a common ingredient in large-scale manufacturing, and the agreement announced today will likely be a common first-step for traditional manufactures. Manufacturers want the benefits of graphene, but it is a highly-specialized material. We are helping partners develop solutions and processes to incorporate graphene into their existing manufacture processes,” co-CEO of Graphene 3D Lab Elena Polyakova said in their December 2015 press release.
Well, without giving away any more information than the initial press release, Graphene 3D Lab has indicated that whatever the research that they were conducting has apparently been fruitful. This week the New York-based company has announced that they have completed the first phase of their agreement with their mysterious partner. They also said that their partner has given them approval to move to the next phase of development and research. There was no other real information about exactly what they are doing, but considering that this is their second press release about the deal, they seem pretty excited about it.
“We are fortunate to have a world leading R&D team in the graphene and nanomaterial field. Meeting or exceeding all of a client’s performance criteria is another example of how we are ideally suited to work with existing manufacturers to assist them with incorporating graphene into their products,” said Polyakova.
The only other information disclosed was the fact that the agreement states that all research, development costs and any royalty obligations related to it will be paid by Graphene 3D Lab’s secret partner. Additionally, their partner will have a first-right-of-refusal for any of the graphene related materials that may be developed in the future using any intellectual property that was developed under the agreement. The rights to any resulting intellectual properties will be held jointing by Graphene 3D Lab and their partner, whom they describe as being included on the Fortune 500 list for more than fifteen years. Looks like we’re just going to have to wait until the end of the year to find out exactly what this is all about. Discuss in the Graphene 3D Project forum over at 3DPB.com.