There is a need in the steel industry to constantly develop new and more sophisticated products to overcome various challenges. Protecting steel coatings is of importance for a number of target markets, such as energy storage, anti corrosion and shielding components such as sensors that need to operate in extreme environments. Graphene is an attractive solution for the steel industry due to its high electrical conductivity and anti-corrosion properties.
New graphene product
Indian multi-national Tata Steel has recently launched a graphene-coated stirrups product, Tiscon Superlinks+. Superlink+ offers enhanced corrosion resistance and better bonding strength than other stirrups in the market.
As well as excellent anti-corrosion properties, graphene is an excellent conductor for heat and electricity and can withstand high pressures. Single-layer graphene films and films consisting of a few layers of graphene also have good transparency. Therefore, thin graphene coatings, for example having up to 4 layers of graphene, do not significantly affect the optical properties of the underlying metal.
Target markets for graphene protective coatings include mining (ore processing, surface and underground mining, and drilling), utilities (seals, accessories, and bearings), defence, agriculture (tillage and planting), construction (drill bits, grinder hammer tips, and other hardware), shipping, energy (wind power at sea) and transportation (brakes, valve trains, bearings, and gears).