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Find out what graphite is composed of and what it is used for

Graphite is one of the natural forms in which carbon occurs in nature, it is considered an almost pure carbon mineral. It is important that we talk about what graphite is composed of, an indispensable material for industry.

Find out what graphite is composed of and what it is used for

Graphite is one of the natural forms in which carbon occurs in nature, it is considered an almost pure carbon mineral. It is important to talk about what graphite is composed of, an indispensable material for industry.

The atoms that make up graphite are organized in hexagonal structures which in turn form networks or basal planes that are held together by strong covalent bonds. In turn, these layers are arranged in parallel and are joined by weaker forces, so the hardness of this material is not very high.

Graphite can be obtained in a natural way, it is made up of between 80 and 90% of pure carbon and presents some other materials such as silica, alumina, ferric oxide, etc. that are eliminated later. China is currently the largest producer of natural graphite in the world, followed by South Korea and India.

On the other hand, we have synthetic graphite, which is obtained from an organic precursor of coal or oil, which is carbonized and then graphitized at over 2,500 degrees Celsius.

Properties of graphite by composition Properties of graphite by composition

Graphite is a good conductor of electricity and the reason for this lies in the bonds between its atoms. In general, the electrical properties of graphite are modified depending on the direction of the planes: when the direction is parallel, it is an excellent conductor of electricity, but if it is perpendicular, we obtain an insulator.

Precisely because of this property, graphite is widely used in mobile power batteries for phones or devices. It is present in alkaline and rechargeable lithium-ion batteries in which it works with conductive additive at the cathode and active at the anode, respectively.

In addition, graphite is the main component of the vast majority of brushes for electric motors, which perform the function of making the electrical connection between the rotor of an electric motor (the rotating part) and the fixed part.

It is an extremely refractory material, it is a good conductor of heat when the direction is parallel to the basal planes. When it is not so and is perpendicular, graphite behaves as a thermal insulator.

Also, it is a material resistant to almost all corrosive agents, acids and bases, so it is widely used in packaging with exposure to chemical agents.

Due to its resistance to thermal shock, it is used in the glass industry obtaining pieces, in furnaces and production line handling, that withstand high temperatures and allow the sliding of hot glass on its surface.

In ESGRAF we are allied to optimize the efforts in the industries offering all types of graphite presentations. Request information in this link or check our website to know the best applications of graphite in the industry.