Big news was made recently in the scientific world that has pretty large implications for the firearms industry as well. Graphene is a material first produced in 2004 which is basically very thin sheets of pure carbon (its only one atom thick) which are 100 times stronger than steel.
Up until recently it was very costly and very difficult to make even small samples of Graphene. However, Scientists have now figured out a method of fabricating high quality sheets of Graphene that is so laughably simple that it only requires a household blender and some dish soap.
Essentially, researchers have managed to create high-quality graphene in small amounts, or lower-quality graphene in larger amounts, but not large amounts of high-quality material.
“The commercial development of graphene and related two-dimensional materials is at present restrained by the lack of production techniques ready for industrial scale-up,” James Tour of Rice University in Houston wrote in a commentary on the study.
A team of scientists led out of Trinity College Dublin in Ireland came up with a way to take graphite powder, dump it in a laboratory blender with a surfactant mixture and create pure sheets of graphene at far larger quantities than previous methods, the scientists said. In the future, with scaled-up processes, the production rate could easily be hundreds of times higher than many current outfits.
Graphene has obvious implications in the aerospace industry because of its extremely light weight and stronger than steel strength. It is also being touted as a great leap forward in the electronics world because of its ability to conduct electricity better than copper.
As we all know, however, what plays well in the aerospace industry can also carry over to the firearms industry. I have no doubt that major manufacturers of both firearms and accessories will latch onto this new technology in only a few short years down the road, and it will go a long way to help make firearms/accessories lighter and stronger.
One of the biggest things that really stands out to me is the near immediate implications when it comes to 3D printing. You see, Graphene can also be used in its liquid form and dispensed from inkjet cartridges. I am not completely sure of the particulars of it all and if you can 100% completely 3D print with Graphene, but you should at the very least be able to incorporate measured amounts of Graphene into 3D printed items to increase their strength up to and probably surpassing the strength of steel.
Get ready… 3D printed guns are about to take another major leap forward.