Graphene is a two-dimensional network carbon nanomaterial. All carbon atoms inside the graphene form a unique two-dimensional hexagonal honeycomb lattice structure by sp2 hybridization. This monatomic layer structure makes graphene the thinnest and strongest material in the world. Graphene also has excellent physical and chemical properties, such as mechanical properties, thermal properties, electrical properties, and optical properties. That is why, graphene has prospects for practical application and a wider value. The graphene is also compared with other members of the carbon nanomaterials family, namely one-dimensional carbon nanotubes and zero-dimensional fullerenes.
Recently, graphene is often combined with ceramic, polymer and metal materials to prepare graphene-reinforced composites. And this situation is not only making the composite materials’ physical and chemical properties greatly improved, but also expanding the application of graphene in the field of biosensors, optoelectronic materials, and catalysts. In some applications graphene water dispersion is needed to use and gives better properties to the materials.
Dispersions of graphene are beneficial for the use of graphene in various industrial applications, such as: use as component or additive of elastomeric compositions for tires. If graphene level is 1–1.5% in the dispersion many superior properties can be achieved like an improved gas barrier effect, with consequent increase of impermeability, causing the tire to deflate more slowly; improvement of the mechanical dynamic properties, in particular rolling resistance; increase of thermal conductivity, useful for heat dissipation; increase of electrical conductivity, useful for the dissipation of electrostatic energy.
If graphene water dispersions are used as additive or component of silicon and paints compositions, increase of electrical conductivity, increase of thermal conductivity for heat dissipation can be obtained to reach conductive compounds; to give anticorrosion and antifouling properties, gas and liquid barrier effect with consequent increase of impermeability.
In textiles if graphene levels reach 40% in water dispersion good electrical conductivity for producing intelligent textiles, good thermal conductivity, liquid barrier effect, flame retardant properties and IR shielding can be obtained.