Why Is Graphite So Strong?

The delocalised electrons are free to move through the structure, so graphite can conduct electricity.

The layers in graphite can slide over each other because the forces between them are weak.

This makes graphite slippery, so it is useful as a lubricant .

Why is graphite so much weaker?

In diamond, each carbon atom forms 4 covalent bonds in a tetrahedral structure. The sheets of carbon become bonded by weaker intermolecular forces. It is because of these weak intermolecular forces that the layersof graphite can slide over eachother, making the overall substance a lot weaker than diamond.

How strong is graphite?

These layers are 3.4 Angstroms apart. It is the fact that the layers are held together by weak Van der Waals forces that make graphite soft. Note each layer of graphite itself is quite strong – in fact graphene is nothing but one of these layers (i.e. one carbon atom thick layer).

Why is graphene so strong?

What makes Graphene so strong is its electrostatic forces resulting from delocalized electrons flowing through positively charged carbon atoms. This diffrence in charge creates a strong electrostatic attraction that holds Graphene together.

Why is graphite softer than diamond GCSE?

Graphite is soft because the bonding between its layers of carbon atoms is weak; thus, the layers detach easily from one another whereas in a diamond every carbon electron bonds with all the electrons from its adjacent carbon atom. A diamond crystal has a tetrahedral arrangement of carbon atoms.