Graphitic carbon, with its diverse structures and unique properties, is everywhere at Earth's surface. Strategically located at the interface between the lithosphere, biosphere, hydrosphere, and atmosphere, graphitic carbon constitutes a major terrestrial carbon reservoir. Natural and synthetic graphitic carbon is also used in a broad range of applications, and graphitic carbon, so widely varied in its physical properties, has proven to be adaptable to many uses in society. Graphitic carbon has played an important role in human history (for example, coal mining) and is now a building block of nanotechnology, but this remarkable material is also an active player in geological processes.

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