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Lockdown and the Graphite Industry

Is there a correlation between lockdown and changes in the graphite industry?

It seems strange to assume that there would be any relationship between lockdown and the graphite industry specifically. Especially to suggest that this affect could be a positive one, given how badly some industries have been affected.

But if we put the question another way, more of a connection is clear:

How do new attitudes surrounding working from home affect the world of graphite?

Whilst the rest of the world slowly grinds back towards ‘normalcy’, whatever that might mean…

Big companies including the likes of Amazon and Just Eat are moving massive numbers of employees into more permanent remote positions.

For some, this will mean splitting their time between their home office and a headquarters. For others this will mean permanently working at home.

Either way, the need for home-office equipment has risen dramatically.

Even those who aren’t working from home are spending far more time there. As well as taking up activities like walking, running and seeing a huge rise in demand for home-gym equipment, people are investing in other tech for their homes.

With people treating themselves to gaming consoles, laptops, smartphones & smartwatches, effects are taking place in areas you might not expect.

There are the obvious ones – for takeaway companies, business is booming. For video game companies, likewise.

How does this affect the graphite industry?

For the graphite industry the connection is a little less obvious, but it is there.

Technology being bought for WFH offices and entertainment is often produced with graphite as a crucial element in the manufacturing process.

Semiconductors

Semiconductors are used in the manufacturing of electronic devices.

Isotropic graphite is used when manufacturing these semiconductors.

Some of these processes include liquid crystal panel manufacturing, silicon ingot manufacturing, and ion implantation.

Semiconductors partially hold a current between

Continuous Casting

A more specific example of this would be tiny graphite parts called continuous casting dies, which are used in the manufacturing of copper used in connectors and terminals for devices like smartphones, tablets and laptops.

Graphite is the ideal material for continuous casting dies, as it cannot easily be wetted by metal in liquid form. Because of this, it can be used in continuous casting with a range of metals such as copper alloys, aluminium alloys, precious metals or cast iron.

Jigs

Sealing jigs are also used in the manufacture of electronics.

Graphite is an ideal material for sealing jigs, given it’s resistance to high temperatures and it’s low coefficient of thermal expansion. It is also easily machinable into the form these sealing jigs take, with extremely tiny holes throughout.

WHY Graphite?

As ever, this ‘miracle material’ is ideal for this application as a result of its resistance to high temperatures, machinability and low cost.

If you have any questions about our isotropic grades or a specific application, don’t hesitate to Contact Us.

Olmec Advanced Materials Ltd - The UK’s biggest Supplier of Carbon and Graphite