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Graphite & Carbon uses in the Electronic Industry

How graphite is used for photovoltaics, semiconductors and optical fibres

Why graphite is the ideal material

TYPE OF PRODUCT

APPLICATION

Slicing beams

Slicing beams are used to cut silicon ingots into thin discs known as wafers. These wafers are then used to make photovoltaic (PV) cells for solar panels.

Applications: Cutting monocrystalline and polycrystalline silicon

Why graphite? Prevents the silicon from breaking away during the slicing process

Crucibles

Boats

Moulds

Components used in the process of creating monocrystalline silicon ingots for solar panel production.

The silicon is purified, put into a crucible with other elements then melted at a very high temperature. A silicon rod is placed on the surface of the molten silicon in the crucible, and then pulled and rotated to form a monocrystalline ingot.

Applications: Monocrystalline silicon pulling (known as the Czochralski technique, and sometimes called CZ pulling)

Why graphite? Resistant to high temperatures, resistance to thermal shock, high melting point, high purity

Susceptors

Heating elements

Heat shields

Components used in the process of creating monocrystalline silicon ingots for semiconductors, which demand a higher level of purity than products used to manufacture solar panels.

In ion implantation, the ion beam collisions expose metal components to high amounts of wear. Graphite shields are used to protect such components.

Applications: Monocrystalline silicon pulling (known as the Czochralski technique, and sometimes called CZ pulling), epitaxy, ion implantation

Why graphite? Resistant to high temperatures, resistance to thermal shock, high melting point, high purity

Insulation

Heating equipment

Fibre-optic cable has to be manufactured to withstand stress in harsh environments (e.g. high temperatures, high risk of damage etc.). To achieve this, the cable is insulated or given a protective coating made of graphite.

Extremely pure graphite is also used to produce heating equipment for processing glass rods into the thin, light-conducting optical fibres.

Applications: Optical fibres

Why graphite? Resistant to high temperatures, resistance to thermal shock, high melting point, high purity

Sealing jigs

In glass-to-metal sealing, a conductor (whether electricity, light or gas) is passed from one airtight environment to another. The glass used provides the airtight seal, along with other components made of graphite, such as sealing jigs.

Applications: Glass-to-metal sealing

Why graphite? Resistant to oxidation, resistant to high temperatures, low abrasion, easy to machine

Anodes

Cathodes

Felts

Most lithium-ion batteries have anodes made of graphite powder coated on copper foil. The benefit of graphite here is that it can reversibly place lithium-ions between its many layers.

Battery felts made of graphite allow an efficient charge between the electrolyte and bipolar plate when the battery is charged.

Applications: Energy storage (batteries)

Why graphite? Highly conductive, resistant to corrosion, high purity

Plates for fuel cells

A fuel cell is a device that combines hydrogen with oxygen to generate electricity, with water and heat as its by-product.

Inside the cell, graphite plates are attached to the electrode backings on either side. These plates conduct the energy from the electrodes and guide the flow of hydrogen and oxygen.

Applications: Fuel cells

Why graphite? Highly conductive, resistant to corrosion, high purity, low porosity

Graphite uses in the aerospace and defence industry

Aerospace Industry
Because graphite is light and strong and can withstand extreme temperatures, it is widely used in the manufacturing of complex components for space shuttles and military aerospace vehicles. Learn More

Graphite uses in aluminium

Aluminium Industry
Graphite’s excellent resistance to chemicals and extreme heat make it ideal for use in the complex processes of creating and purifying aluminium. Learn More

Graphite uses in chemicals and petrochemicals

Many processes in the chemical and petrochemical industries involve the pumping, stirring and transportation of corrosive, toxic or explosive products. Graphite’s resistance to corrosion and wear mean it is ideal for these applications Learn More

Graphite uses in the glass and fibreglass industry

Glass & Ceramics Industry
Applications in the glass and fibreglass industry demand products with high electrical conductivity, mechanical strength and excellent performance at extreme temperatures. Graphite passes the test. Learn More