I well remember an experiment I did in physics A-level at school. Knowing the length and width one dimension of the cross-sectional area it was a simple calculation to measure the thickness of the pencil mark.
Surely some of this carbon must be in the form of few or single layers of graphene. The confusion arose when large-scale graphite deposits were discovered and people believed it was lead or lead ore.
The only large deposit of pure graphite is to be found in Cumbria in England, where there is now a pencil museum. The material, also used to line cannonball moulds, was unavailable in France during the Napoleonic wars. The method is still used today to produce the implements everyone around the world learns to write with. Site powered by Webvision Cloud. Skip to main content Skip to navigation Create your free account You'll be able to read more articles, watch more videos and listen to more podcasts.
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Subscribe to this podcast series. No comments. Pondering the chemistry of the humble pencil. Neil Withers Features editor, Chemistry World. Related articles.
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