High thermal conductivity of high-quality monolayer boron nitride and its thermal expansion

Journal: Science Advances

Published: 2019-06-01

DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aav0129

Affiliations: 3

Authors: 10

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Research Highlight

An atom-thick heat diffuser for devices

© ROBERT BROOK/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY/Getty

© ROBERT BROOK/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY/Getty

Single-atom-thick sheets of boron nitride are both highly electrically insulating and good conductors of heat, making them ideal for getting rid of unwanted heat in small electronic devices.

The increasing miniaturization of devices has made it more important than ever to control the build-up of heat in them. This requires using materials that conduct heat away efficiently but are also electrical insulators. However, such materials are notoriously difficult to find because good thermal conductors tend to be good electrical conductors.

A team led by researchers at Deakin University in Australia has found that a single-atom-thick sheet of hexagonal boron nitride — a highly electrically insulating material — has the second largest thermal conductivity of all semiconductors and insulators.

Coupled with its other favourable properties that include outstanding strength, good flexibility and high chemical stability, this makes atomically thin boron nitride promising for dissipating unwanted heat in many applications, particularly the next generation of flexible electronic devices.

Supported content

  1. Science Advances 5, eaav0129 (2019). doi: 10.1126/sciadv.aav0129
Institutions Share
Institute for Frontier Materials (IFM), Deakin University, Australia 0.60
School of Mathematics and Physics, QUB, United Kingdom (UK) 0.20
Research Center for Functional Materials (RCFM), NIMS, Japan 0.20

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