This case study is based on an article published by the World Intellectual Property Organization. The original article can be found here.
WHO: Graphenel JSC, led by Tuan Le, CEO and Jat Le, Chief Project Officer
Graphene is a valuable and useful nanomaterial, exhibiting significant strength, electrical conductivity and transparency – all while being the thinnest two-dimensional material in the world. The material has a wide range of applications – particularly within smartphones, solar cells, light-emitting diodes and even greener building materials. For example, Graphenel is exploring the use of graphene in cement production to increase the strength and longevity of buildings.
Le and Le originally formed the business NanoLife, focused broadly on nanomaterials. After realizing the potential for graphene-related innovation, the two decided to rebrand as Graphanel JSC. Their research and development work spanning seven years delivered a novel process to manufacture graphene.
Essentially, the innovators take animal fat to produce graphene cost effectively. One kilogram of refined animal fat creates one gram of graphene. A single production cycle, producing 6 kilograms of graphene, takes only about two days.
The leaders at Graphenel JSC anticipate launching their first products later this year. By collaborating with research institutes, universities, and private companies, Graphenel JSC was ale to commercialize products and accelerate their journey to market.
This innovation and collaboration would not be possible without the support and incentives facilitated by intellectual property (IP). Graphenel JSC sees IP as being “pivotal” to securing funding to develop their work; by filing a patent with the Intellectual Property Office of Vietnam, Graphenel JSC demonstrated the validity and potential impact of their technology. IP also enables them to share their invention with collaborators – with agreements in place that let Le and Le know their work would be protected.
“Intellectual property is super important to us and has been pivotal in enabling us to secure funding” – Jane Phung, Graphenel JSC