Use cases ·

Impact and applications of graphite

The structure of graphite is made up of layers of hexagons with 6 atoms each, figures that are linked together by covalent double bonds and, in turn, form overlapping sheets with weak bonds that make it a soft material and easily peeled off in sheets.

Impact and applications of graphite

One of the main differences between graphite and diamond, if both are allotropic forms of carbon, is the hardness of graphite. While diamond is one of the hardest materials in the world, graphite is brittle and wears easily in its natural state.

The structure of graphite is made up of layers of hexagons with 6 atoms each, figures that are linked together by covalent double bonds and, in turn, form overlapping sheets with weak bonds that make it a soft material and easily peeled off in sheets.

Before talking about the hardness of graphite, it is important to mention that this quality refers to the extent to which a material suffers alterations by external processes such as cutting, scratching, penetration, abrasion, etc.

In this sense, Mohs scale, among other methods, is used to determine how hard a material is. To do this, a ratio of 10 minerals is taken into account, which are ordered in a table from lowest to highest depending on how easily it scratches and that a harder substance can scratch the whiter ones, without being able to happen the other way around.

The least hard material according to this scale is talc, which can be easily scratched with the fingernail, and the hardest is diamond, which can only be scratched by another diamond. Graphite, on the Mohs scale, has a hardness between 1 and 2, i.e. a comparison between the hardness of talc and gypsum.

Applications of graphite

Graphite is widely used in pencil lead and, because of its high temperature resistance and self-lubrication, it is used in engineering parts such as bearings, seals, pistons, etc. It is also one of the main components of the vast majority of electric motor brushes and batteries (alkaline, lithium-ion) due to its electrically conductive properties. It is a good thermal conductor when the direction is parallel to the basal planes. When perpendicular, graphite behaves as a thermal insulator.

Some of the main advantages of graphite are that it is resistant to thermal shock, it is relatively easy to obtain from nature, although it can also be created synthetically, and it does not melt under normal conditions, but is converted directly to gas, thus avoiding wear.

In addition, it has a much lower density than copper, so much lighter electrodes are obtained, it is a self-lubricating material and it is not very hard so it is easy to process.

In ESGRAF we commercialize and manufacture different graphite products and handle different presentations for multiple uses in the industry in general.

Request information in this link or check our website to know the best applications of graphite in the industry.