Lightweight, Handheld X-Ray Devices Based on Graphene

Lightweight, Handheld X-Ray Devices Based on Graphene - Featured Graphene Medical research
New X-ray technology assisted by could lead to light-weight, tissue targeted machines.

A breakthrough between MIT and Singapore Institute of Manufacturing researchers may pave the way for handheld X-ray devices.

The team used graphene to replace the traditional bulky X-ray tubes you find in doctor’s offices, which scatter the high-frequency electromagnetic waves in all directions. This approach can be inefficient and sometimes raises radiation safety concerns. reports graphene, in this , is used to ‘support plasmons, collections of electronic oscillations that can be used to confine and manipulate electromagnetic radiation on the ten-nanometre scale.’”

Because of the 1-atom thick nature of pure graphene, the new technology could lead to light-weight, X-ray sources. says: ‘X-ray tube sources ‘cannot be tuned for particular applications where a very specific frequency might benefit a particular analysis. Currently, different devices are needed for each frequency that a radiographer or researcher will need.’ Graphene assisted X-ray machines, on the other hand ‘could be built as a bench-top or even handheld device for a wide range of applications.’”

A tuneable, pointable X-ray source would reduce costs and be useful in targeting cancerous tumors without damaging surrounding healthy tissue.

“As quoted in, SIMTech’s Liang Jie Wong explains: ‘Although there is a long way to go to actual realization, this is a very exciting research direction. Developing an intense X-ray source that can fit on a table or be held in one’s hand would potentially revolutionize many areas of science and technology.’”