Steelmaker Enters Graphene Business

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Steelmaker Enters Graphene Business
3d Illustration of graphene molecular structure. © rost9

Gerdau, Brazil’s largest steel producer, has launched a new company, Gerdau Graphene, to develop products, including lubricants, based on graphene applications, the company announced last week. Gerdau Graphene will operate independently from Gerdau’s steel business divisions.

“The new business unit is positioned as a major producer of graphene in the Americas,” Sao Paulo-based Gerdau said in a press release April 28. “The company plans to offer more technology to the construction, industrial and automotive lubricants, rubber, thermoplastics, paints and sensors industries in Brazil and countries across North America.”

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Graphene is a two-dimensional material consisting of a single layer of atoms, impermeable to liquids and gases and helpful to reducing friction and wear. “Recent research indicates additional benefits in terms of combustion, which increase the potential for fuel efficiency while reducing greenhouse gas emissions,” Gerdau Graphene says on its website.

“Gerdau Graphene’s market entry is unique, thanks to its proposition of making graphene production on a large scale commercially viable,” said Alexandre de Toledo Correa, head of Gerdau Graphene. “Our unique value proposition is to supply the market with graphene additives, boosters and plug-and-play solutions for our customers’ industrial processes. In other words, we will market both the product and the service and know-how in graphene, for which we have entered into strategic alliances with domestic and global partners.”

The parent company will be the new company’s first customer, enabling Gerdau Graphene to “develop and test new products and solutions quickly and with the intimacy of application.” Gerdau Graphene already has deals with major graphene developers in the Brazilian market, the press release said.

The mission of Gerdau Graphene is to become “the benchmark in marketing products based on graphene applications on an industrial scale in Brazil and with the focus on reaching global markets,” the parent company said.

Gerdau said it has been researching graphene for four years and partnered with the Graphene Engineering Innovation Centre at the University of Manchester in the United Kingdom to conduct additional research on the material in 2019.

The new company will be headquartered in Sao Paulo with an office in the United States. Gerdau mainly operates in the steel industry, but launched a new business division, Gerdau Next, last year to expand into new market segments.

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Brazil    Finished Lubricants    Market Topics    Region    South America