2024 journal article

Unprecedented electrical performance of friction-extruded copper-graphene composites


By: B. Gwalani n, X. Li*, A. Nittala*, W. Choi*, M. Reza-E-Rabby*, J. Atehortua, A. Bhattacharjee*, M. Pole* ...

author keywords: Copper; Graphene; Temperature coefficient of resistance; Electrical conductivity; Defect density; Shear processing; Friction extrusion
Source: Web Of Science
Added: January 22, 2024

Copper-graphene composites show remarkable electrical performance surpassing traditional copper conductors albeit at a micron scale; there are several challenges in demonstrating similar performance at the bulk scale. In this study, we used shear assisted processing and extrusion (ShAPE) to synthesize macro-scale copper-graphene composites with a simultaneously lower temperature coefficient of resistance (TCR) and improved electrical conductivity over copper-only samples. We showed that the addition of 18 ppm of graphene decreased the TCR of C11000 alloy by nearly 11 %. A suite of characterization tools involving scanning and transmission electron microscopy along with atom probe tomography were used to characterize the grain size, crystallographic orientation, structure, and composition of copper grains and graphene additives in the feedstock and processed samples. We posit that the shear extrusion process may have transformed some of the feedstock graphene additives into higher defect-density agglomerates while retaining the structure of others as mono-to-trilete flakes with lower defect density. The combination of these additives with heterogeneous structures may have been responsible for the simultaneous decrease in TCR and enhanced electrical conductivity of the copper-graphene ShAPE composites.