Tuesday, October 5, 2010
Can somebody with more condensed matter background explain to me why the 2004 discovery of graphene is worth the Nobel? It was less than 10 years ago, and although everybody is predicting lots of practical applications, so far there have been none. I presume that it's being used by a lot of people to test lots of theories about 2D electron transport and quantum behavior, but to me that makes it more of a tool for testing interesting theories than an interesting discovery in its own right. Of course, people do win Nobel prizes for tools (laser cooling, for example) but I don't see graphene as being in the same category of importance. Anybody want to tell me what I'm missing?