Background: From its appearance in the scientific literature, graphene has received much interest,
first from the scientific community and then, after the scale-up of the methods suitable for its production,
from the industrial world. Nowadays, this nanofiller has to be considered as one of the most
promising and performing materials ever discovered: in fact, it is deserving application in different fields,
including nanoelectronics, quantum physics, catalysis, energy research and engineering of nanocomposites
and biomaterials. The remarkable growth in science, graphene underwent during the last 15 years, is
strictly connected to its peculiarities, such as high Young’s modulus, high fracture strength, remarkable
thermal and electrical conductivity, large specific surface area, high charge carrier mobility and also biocompatibility.
At present, one of the application fields where graphene is gaining a lot of success refers to
the fabrication of polymer composites on a commercial scale and low/affordable cost, including both
thermoplastic and thermosetting host matrices. These composites do exploit the homogeneous dispersion
level of the nanofiller within the polymer matrix, mainly for enhancing the electrical and thermal conductivity
of this latter, as well as its mechanical properties, in a remarkable way, even in the presence of very
low graphene loadings. In addition, the obtained nanocomposites usually show higher thermal stability
with respect to the unfilled polymer matrix. At present, there are about six main areas related to emerging
applications for this nanofiller, including displays/screens, biomedical devices, memory chips, fuel
cells/batteries, inks, coatings and, from an overall point of view, new smart materials.
Objective: This paper aims at reviewing the current state-of-the- art about the use of graphene as a nanofiller
in both thermoplastics and thermosets, highlighting the current limitations and providing an overall
point of view on its possible applications/further developments in the next future.