Bacteria produced- graphene could make your computer 1000 times faster

Graphene is undoubtedly a wonderful nanomaterial for which inventors of it were rewarded with noble prize. Graphene produced chemically is risky and possess hazard to nervous system. Hence researchers employed bacteria in this process. Bacterially produced graphene is environmentally friendly paving the way for future products and applications.


Bacteria produced graphene  


Researcher have found a novel technique  to increase computer speed 1000 times all credits to Bacteria produced- graphene.

Researcher are always at the upfront in creating a new and more efficient computers, medical devices and other high speed electronic gadgets. Hence to provide this the researcher are digging at nanomaterials- materials at the nanoscale of atoms or molecules that showcase unique properties.

One such material is Graphene—a flake of carbon as thin as a single layer of atoms which is proving to be a revolutionary nanomaterial due to its potential in easily conducting electricity as well as its extraordinary mechanical strength and flexibility. However, a major hinderance is producing it at a bulk level. To produce graphene in large quantities requires lots of energy and involves exposure to toxic chemicals, such as hydrazine, which damages the nervous system.

Researchers from the University of Rochester and the Netherlands’ Delft University of Technology are working to change this procedure and replace it with novel technique. Hence the bacteria comes into play. To mass produce graphene scientists have mixed oxidized graphite with bacteria. Their method is cost-efficient, time-efficient, and it does not require to deal with harsh chemicals.

Current method to produce Graphene 

Graphene is extracted from graphite, which can be seen in  an ordinary pencil.  Graphene is the thinnest — yet strongest — two-dimensional material at one atom thick. In 2010,  Scientists from the University of Manchester in the United Kingdom were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics for their discovery of graphene.

Initially their method was using sticky tape to yield graphene but it resulted in just  small amounts.

Currently it is done by chemical vapor deposition, or by shredding graphite into graphene oxide then chemically reducing it. Since both these methods require to deal with harsh chemicals scientists are finding an alternate to these methods.



“For real applications you need large amounts, producing these bulk amounts is challenging and typically results in graphene that is thicker and less pure. This is where our work came in.”


-Anne S. Meyer, an associate professor of biology at the University of Rochester

Bacteria produced – graphene Method


The scientists hired  Shewanella oneidensis bacteria, which has a natural inbuilt mechanism to remove oxygen-based molecules from chemicals such as metal oxides. In order to produce large amount of graphene, meyer and her colleagues started with a vial of graphite. later exfoliated the graphite to get graphene oxide. The team fed these bacteria with graphene oxide and kept the  precursor materials sit overnight, during which time the bacteria reduced the Graphene oxide to a graphene material.


 Advantages of baceria produced-graphene
Bacteria produced -Graphene which is produced in Meyer’s lab is conductive, thinner and is more stable when compared to chemically produced graphene. The storage time period of bacteria produced graphene is longer which makes it capable for variety of application. One such application of graphene is in field-effect transistor (FET) biosensors. These are devices that detect biological molecules and could be used to perform, real-time glucose monitoring for diabetic patients.

The reduced material Graphene oxide is very ideal material because of its lightweight and very conductive nature, but it basically retains a small number of oxygen groups that can be used to bind to the molecules of interest.


“When biological molecules bind to the device, they change the conductance of the surface, sending a signal that the molecule is present, to make a good FET biosensor you want a material that is highly conductive but can also be modified to bind to specific molecules.” 

-Anne S. Meyer, an associate professor of biology at the University of Rochester


Another major application of bacteria produced-graphene material could be as a conductive inks, which could enhance the speed and efficiency of computer keyboards, circuit boards, or small wires such as those used to defrost car windshields. Using conductive inks is an “easier, more economical way to produce electrical circuits, compared to traditional techniques,” Meyer says. 

“Our bacterially produced graphene material will lead to far better suitability for product development. We were even able to develop a technique of ‘bacterial lithography’ to create graphene materials that were only conductive on one side, which can lead to the development of new, advanced nanocomposite materials.”

-Anne S. Meyer, an associate professor of biology at the University of Rochester

Point of view

Bacterial produced – Graphene looks more promising to me than the current chemical methods which involves handling harsh chemicals, which also possess a serious threat to human nervous system. As this is the first approach to produce graphene with the help of bacteria plenty more of research has to be done to make it practical at large scale.

We hope our next generation laptops have a taste of bacterial DNA too.




1. Benjamin A. E. Lehner Vera A. E. C. Janssen Dr. Ewa M. Spiesz Dominik Benz Dr. Stan J. J. Brouns Dr. Anne S. Meyer Prof. Dr. Herre S. J. van der Zant. Creation of Conductive Graphene Materials by Bacterial Reduction Using Shewanella Oneidensis. journal-chemistry open

Drafted by Nagama Nadaf
 A technophile who is crazy about technology and passionate about blogging. 
I care by sharing recent advancements in technology and try to reach out to the minds of people

Nagama Nadaf

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