Graphene? Diamond? The most resistant material is called Carbyne.


Carbon is the chemical element which is surprising us every time. It is one of the most resistant materials in the world. Carbyne is often a general term for any compound whose molecular structure includes an electrically neutral carbon atom with three non-bonded electrons, connected to another atom by a single bond. It is about two times stronger than graphene and carbon nanotubes, which until now were the strongest materials by some margin. Furthermore, it is even more than 40 times more resistant than diamond.

Carbyne has a long list of unusual and highly desirable properties that make it an interesting material for a wide range of applications, from nanoelectronic/spintronic devices to hydrogen storage to higher-density batteries.

It consists in an indefinitely long chain of carbon atoms that are joined together by sequential double bonds or alternating single and triple bonds.


Its origin is not determinate; astronomers believe that they’ve detected carbyne in meteorites. Nowadays, the small quantity that we have of it, it is only in labs.

Carbyne cannot be stretched; it can be bent into an arc or circle. This property could lead to some interesting uses in microelectromechanical systems.


Just like graphene, carbyne is just one atom thick. This means that, for a given mass of carbyne, its surface area is relatively massive. This could be very important in areas such as energy storage (batteries, supercapacitors), where the surface area of the electrode is directly proportional to the energy density of the device.

Moving forward, then, carbyne appears to have lots of desirable properties that warrant further investigation. So, are we in the substitution of graphene? Is carbine,a familiar of graphene, the worst competitor of it?


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