Composites made from epoxy resin containing graphene could be used to shield electronic devices from electromagnetic radiation and dissipate excess heat in these devices at the same time. This is the new finding from researchers at the University of California, Riverside (UCR) who have tested composites containing different thicknesses of few-layer graphene fillers. The best materials boast a thermal conductivity, K, of around 8 W/m/K (which is 35 times larger than the matrix material on its own) while providing a total electromagnetic interference shielding, SEtot, of 45 dB in the important X-band frequency range (of between 8.2 GHz to 12.4 GHz).


“Heat and electromagnetic radiation are inevitably produced in electronic devices, especially those operating at high frequencies,” explains research team leader Alexander Balandin, who is in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at UCR. “As electronic devices become ever smaller and operate at higher and higher frequencies, they generate even more heat and electromagnetic waves. These not only degrade the devices themselves (EM waves also produce heat), but they can adversely affect neighbouring electronics systems. EM radiation might also be dangerous for human and animal health and the environment.”

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