Harnessing the chemistry of graphene oxide
Our understanding of the fundamental structure and bonding of graphene oxide (GO) as well as the scope of its utility have grown tremendously over the past decade. As a result, the pace of research efforts directed toward this carbon material continues to increase. Contemporary application now intersects a variety of disciplines and includes heterogeneous catalysis, flow reactor technologies, biomedicine and biotechnology, polymer composites, energy storage, and chemical sensors. Advances in these areas have been buoyed by improvements in the methods used to synthesize and characterize GO, as well as functionalized derivatives thereof. While the diverse uses of GO have been reviewed previously, herein we provide an overview of some of the most recent and significant developments in the field. A brief overview of GO's synthesis and characterization is also provided as well as several recently proposed structural models. The inherent reactivity of GO is described in the context of catalysis, and the utilization of GO's reactive oxygen groups and carbon framework to prepare functionalized derivatives is also discussed. Finally, we provide an outlook of potential areas where GO, its derivatives, and related materials may be expected to find utility or opportunity for further growth and study.