This paper investigates the effect of driving voltage on the attachment force of an electroadhesion actuator, as the existing literature on the saturation of the adhesive force at a higher electric field is incomplete. A new type of electroadhesion actuator using normally available materials, such as aluminum foil, PVC tape and a silicone rubber sheet used for keyboard protection, has been developed with a simple layered structure that is capable of developing adhesive force consistently. The developed actuator is subjected to the experiment for the evaluation of various test surfaces; aluminum, brick, ceramic, concrete and glass. The driving high voltage is varied in steps to determine the characteristics of the output holding force. Results show a quadratic relation between F (adhesion force) and V (driving voltage) within the 2 kV range. After this range, the F-V responses consistently show a saturation trend at high electric fields. Next, the concept of the leakage current that can occur in the dielectric material and the corona discharge through air has been introduced. Results show that the voltage level, which corresponds to the beginning of the supply current, matches well with the beginning of the force saturation. With the confirmation of this hypothesis, a working model for electroadhesion actuation is proposed. Based on the experimental results, it is proposed that such a kind of actuator can be driven within a range of optimum high voltage to remain electrically efficient. This practice is recommended for the future design, development and characterization of electroadhesion actuators for robotic applications.
The effect of carbon black on the mechanical properties of elastomers is of great interest, because the filler is one of principal ingredients for the manufacturing of rubber products. While fillers can be used to enhance the properties of elastomers, including stress-free swelling resistance in solvent, it is widely known that the introduction of fillers yields significant inelastic responses of elastomers under cyclic mechanical loading, such as stress-softening, hysteresis and permanent set. When a filled elastomer is under mechanical deformation, the filler acts as a strain amplifier in the rubber matrix. Since the matrix local strain has a profound effect on the material's ability to absorb solvent, the study of the effect of carbon black content on the swelling characteristics of elastomeric components exposed to solvent in the presence of mechanical deformation is a prerequisite for durability analysis. The aim of this study is to investigate the effect of carbon black content on the swelling of elastomers in solvent in the presence of static mechanical strains: simple extension and simple torsion. Three different types of elastomers are considered: unfilled, filled with 33 phr (parts per hundred) and 66 phr of carbon black. The peculiar role of carbon black on the swelling characteristics of elastomers in solvent in the presence of mechanical strain is explored.
A new design and analysis of a wide-band double-negative metamaterial, considering a frequency range of 0.5 to 7 GHz, is presented in this paper. Four different unit cells with varying design parameters are analyzed to evaluate the effects of the unit-cell size on the resonance frequencies of the metamaterial. Moreover, open and interconnected 2 × 2 array structures of unit cells are analyzed. The finite-difference time-domain (FDTD) method, based on the Computer Simulation Technology (CST) Microwave Studio, is utilized in the majority of this investigation. The experimental portion of the study was performed in a semi-anechoic chamber. Good agreement is observed between the simulated and measured S parameters of the developed unit cell and array. The designed unit cell exhibits negative permittivity and permeability simultaneously at S-band (2.95 GHz to 4.00 GHz) microwave frequencies. In addition, the designed unit cell can also operate as a double-negative medium throughout the C band (4.00 GHz to 4.95 GHz and 5.00 GHz to 5.57 GHz). At a number of other frequencies, it exhibits a single negative value. The two array configurations cause a slight shift in the resonance frequencies of the metamaterial and hence lead to a slight shift of the single- and double-negative frequency ranges of the metamaterial.
A controllable electrochemical synthesis to convert reduced graphene oxide (rGO) from graphite flakes was introduced and investigated in detail. Electrochemical reduction was used to prepare rGO because of its cost effectiveness, environmental friendliness, and ability to produce rGO thin films in industrial scale. This study aimed to determine the optimum applied potential for the electrochemical reduction. An applied voltage of 15 V successfully formed a uniformly coated rGO thin film, which significantly promoted effective electron transfer within dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs). Thus, DSSC performance improved. However, rGO thin films formed in voltages below or exceeding 15 V resulted in poor DSSC performance. This behavior was due to poor electron transfer within the rGO thin films caused by poor uniformity. These results revealed that DSSC constructed using 15 V rGO thin film exhibited high efficiency (η = 1.5211%) attributed to its higher surface uniformity than other samples. The addition of natural lemon juice (pH ~ 2.3) to the electrolyte accelerated the deposition and strengthened the adhesion of rGO thin film onto fluorine-doped tin oxide (FTO) glasses.
The upgrade recycling of cast-iron scrap chips towards β-FeSi₂ thermoelectric materials is proposed as an eco-friendly and cost-effective production process. By using scrap waste from the machining process of cast-iron components, the material cost to fabricate β-FeSi₂ is reduced and the industrial waste is recycled. In this study, β-FeSi₂ specimens obtained from cast iron scrap chips were prepared both in the undoped form and doped with Al and Co elements. The maximum figure of merit (ZT) indicated a thermoelectric performance of approximately 70% in p-type samples and nearly 90% in n-type samples compared to β-FeSi₂ prepared from pure Fe and other published studies. The use of cast iron scrap chips to produce β-FeSi₂ shows promise as an eco-friendly and cost-effective production process for thermoelectric materials.
A synthesis of acrylonitrile (AN)/butyl acrylate (BA)/fumaronitrile (FN) and AN/EHA (ethyl hexyl acrylate)/FN terpolymers was carried out by redox polymerization using sodium bisulfite (SBS) and potassium persulphate (KPS) as initiator at 40 °C. The effect of comonomers, BA and EHA and termonomer, FN on the glass transition temperature (Tg) and stabilization temperature was studied using Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC). The degradation behavior and char yield were obtained by Thermogravimetric Analysis. The conversions of AN, comonomers (BA and EHA) and FN were 55%-71%, 85%-91% and 76%-79%, respectively. It was found that with the same comonomer feed (10%), the Tg of AN/EHA copolymer was lower at 63 °C compared to AN/BA copolymer (70 °C). AN/EHA/FN terpolymer also exhibited a lower Tg at 63 °C when compared to that of the AN/BA/FN terpolymer (67 °C). By incorporating BA and EHA into a PAN system, the char yield was reduced to ~38.0% compared to that of AN (~47.7%). It was found that FN reduced the initial cyclization temperature of AN/BA/FN and AN/EHA/FN terpolymers to 228 and 221 °C, respectively, in comparison to that of AN/BA and AN/EHA copolymers (~260 °C). In addition, FN reduced the heat liberation per unit time during the stabilization process that consequently reduced the emission of volatile group during this process. As a result, the char yields of AN/BA/FN and AN/EHA/FN terpolymers are higher at ~45.1% and ~43.9%, respectively, as compared to those of AN/BA copolymer (37.1%) and AN/EHA copolymer (38.0%).
The performance of advance photocatalytic degradation of 4-chlorophenoxyacetic acid (4-CPA) strongly depends on photocatalyst dosage, initial concentration and initial pH. In the present study, a simple response surface methodology (RSM) was applied to investigate the interaction between these three independent factors. Thus, the photocatalytic degradation of 4-CPA in aqueous medium assisted by ultraviolet-active ZnO photocatalyst was systematically investigated. This study aims to determine the optimum processing parameters to maximize 4-CPA degradation. Based on the results obtained, it was found that a maximum of 91% of 4-CPA was successfully degraded under optimal conditions (0.02 g ZnO dosage, 20.00 mg/L of 4-CPA and pH 7.71). All the experimental data showed good agreement with the predicted results obtained from statistical analysis.
The aim of this study was to prepare β-wollastonite using a green synthesis method (autoclaving technique) without organic solvents and to study its bioactivity. To prepare β-wollastonite, the precursor ratio of CaO:SiO₂ was set at 55:45. This mixture was autoclaved for 8 h and later sintered at 950 °C for 2 h. The chemical composition of the precursors was studied using X-ray fluorescence (XRF), in which rice husk ash consists of 89.5 wt % of SiO₂ in a cristobalite phase and calcined limestone contains 97.2 wt % of CaO. The X-ray diffraction (XRD) patterns after sintering showed that only β-wollastonite was detected as the single phase. To study its bioactivity and degradation properties, β-wollastonite samples were immersed in simulated body fluid (SBF) for various periods of time. Throughout the soaking period, the molar ratio of Ca/P obtained was in the range of 1.19 to 2.24, and the phase detected was amorphous calcium phosphate, which was confirmed by scanning electron microscope with energy dispersive X-ray analysis (SEM/EDX) and XRD. Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) analysis indicated that the peaks of the calcium and phosphate ions increased when an amorphous calcium phosphate layer was formed on the surface of the β-wollastonite sample. A cell viability and proliferation assay test was performed on the rice husk ash, calcined limestone, and β-wollastonite samples by scanning electron microscope. For heavy metal element evaluation, a metal panel that included As, Cd, Pb, and Hg was selected, and both precursor and β-wollastonite fulfilled the requirement of an American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM F1538-03) standard specification. Apart from that, a degradation test showed that the loss of mass increased incrementally as a function of soaking period. These results showed that the β-wollastonite materials produced from rice husk ash and limestone possessed good bioactivity, offering potential for biomedical applications.
Ceramic nanofibers (NFs) have recently been developed for advanced applications due to their unique properties. In this article, we review developments in electrospun ceramic NFs with regard to their fabrication process, properties, and applications. We find that surface activity of electrospun ceramic NFs is improved by post pyrolysis, hydrothermal, and carbothermal processes. Also, when combined with another surface modification methods, electrospun ceramic NFs result in the advancement of properties and widening of the application domains. With the decrease in diameter and length of a fiber, many properties of fibrous materials are modified; characteristics of such ceramic NFs are different from their wide and long (bulk) counterparts. In this article, electrospun ceramic NFs are reviewed with an emphasis on their applications as catalysts, membranes, sensors, biomaterials, fuel cells, batteries, supercapacitors, energy harvesting systems, electric and magnetic parts, conductive wires, and wearable electronic textiles. Furthermore, properties of ceramic nanofibers, which enable the above applications, and techniques to characterize them are briefly outlined.
A study has been presented on the effects of intrinsic mechanical parameters, such as surface stress, surface elastic modulus, surface porosity, permeability and grain size on the corrosion failure of nanocomposite coatings. A set of mechano-electrochemical equations was developed by combining the popular Butler-Volmer and Duhem expressions to analyze the direct influence of mechanical parameters on the electrochemical reactions in nanocomposite coatings. Nanocomposite coatings of Ni with Al₂O₃, SiC, ZrO₂ and Graphene nanoparticles were studied as examples. The predictions showed that the corrosion rate of the nanocoatings increased with increasing grain size due to increase in surface stress, surface porosity and permeability of nanocoatings. A detailed experimental study was performed in which the nanocomposite coatings were subjected to an accelerated corrosion testing. The experimental results helped to develop and validate the equations by qualitative comparison between the experimental and predicted results showing good agreement between the two.
The effect of milling time on the morphology, microstructure, physical and mechanical properties of pure Al-5 wt % Al₂O₃ (Al-5Al₂O₃) has been investigated. Al-5Al₂O₃ nanocomposites were fabricated using ball milling in a powder metallurgy route. The increase in the milling time resulted in the homogenous dispersion of 5 wt % Al₂O₃ nanoparticles, the reduction of particle clustering, and the reduction of distances between the composite particles. The significant grain refining during milling was revealed which showed as a reduction of particle size resulting from longer milling time. X-Ray diffraction (XRD) analysis of the nanocomposite powders also showed that designated ball milling contributes to the crystalline refining and accumulation of internal stress due to induced severe plastic deformation of the particles. It can be argued that these morphological and microstructural variations of nanocomposite powders induced by designated ball milling time was found to contribute to an improvement in the density, densification, micro-hardness (HV), nano-hardness (HN), and Young's modulus (E) of Al-5Al₂O₃ nanocomposites. HV, HN, and E values of nanocomposites were increased by ~48%, 46%, and 40%, after 12 h of milling, respectively.
A new metasurface superstrate structure (MSS)-loaded dual band microstrip line-fed small patch antenna is presented in this paper. The proposed antenna was designed on a ceramic-filled bioplastic sandwich substrate with a high dielectric constant. The proposed 7 × 6 element, square-shaped, single-sided MSS significantly improved the bandwidth and gain of the proposed antenna. The proposed MSS incorporated a slotted patch antenna that effectively increased the measured operating bandwidth from 13.3% to 18.8% and from 14.8% to 23.2% in the lower and upper bands, respectively. Moreover, the average gain of the proposed MSS-based antenna was enhanced from 2.12 dBi to 3.02 dBi in the lower band and from 4.10 dBi to 5.28 dBi in the upper band compared to the patch antenna alone. In addition to the bandwidth and gain improvements, more directive radiation characteristics were also observed from the MSS antenna compared to the patch itself. The effects of the MSS elements and the ground plane length on the reflection coefficient of the antenna were analyzed and optimized. The overall performance makes the proposed antenna appropriate for RFID and WLAN applications.
e effects of biological pretreatment on the rubberwood (Hevea brasiliensis), was evaluated after cultivation of white rot fungi Ceriporiopsis subvermispora, Trametes versicolor, and a mixed culture of C. subvermispora and T. versicolor. The analysis of chemical compositions indicated that C. subvermispora had greater selectivity for lignin degradation with the highest lignin and hemicellulose loss at 45.06% and 42.08%, respectively, and lowest cellulose loss (9.50%) after 90 days among the tested samples. X-ray analysis showed that pretreated samples had a higher crystallinity than untreated samples. The sample pretreated by C. subvermispora presented the highest crystallinity of all the samples which might be caused by the selective degradation of amorphous components. Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy demonstrated that the content of lignin and hemicellulose decreased during the biological pretreatment process. A study on hydrolysis of rubberwood treated with C. subvermispora, T. versicolor, and mixed culture for 90 days resulted in an increased sugar yield of about 27.67%, 16.23%, and 14.20%, respectively, as compared with untreated rubberwood (2.88%). The results obtained demonstrate that rubberwood is a potential raw material for industrial applications and white rot fungus C. subevermispora provides an effective method for improving the enzymatic hydrolysis of rubberwood.
Microencapsulated paraffin wax/polyaniline was prepared using a simple in situ polymerization technique, and its performance characteristics were investigated. Weight losses of samples were determined by Thermal Gravimetry Analysis (TGA). The microencapsulated samples with 23% and 49% paraffin showed less decomposition after 330 °C than with higher percentage of paraffin. These samples were then subjected to a thermal cycling test. Thermal properties of microencapsulated paraffin wax were evaluated by Differential Scanning Calorimeter (DSC). Structure stability and compatibility of core and coating materials were also tested by Fourier transform infrared spectrophotometer (FTIR), and the surface morphology of the samples are shown by Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscopy (FESEM). It has been found that the microencapsulated paraffin waxes show little change in the latent heat of fusion and melting temperature after one thousand thermal recycles. Besides, the chemical characteristics and structural profile remained constant after one thousand thermal cycling tests. Therefore, microencapsulated paraffin wax/polyaniline is a stable material that can be used for thermal energy storage systems.
In this work, untreated bovine cortical bones (BCBs) were exposed to a range of heat treatments in order to determine at which temperature the apatite develops an optimum morphology comprising porous nano hydroxyapatite (nanoHAp) crystals. Rectangular specimens (10 mm × 10 mm × 3-5 mm) of BCB were prepared, being excised in normal to longitudinal and transverse directions. Specimens were sintered at up to 900 °C under ambient pressure in order to produce apatites by two steps sintering. The samples were characterized by thermogravimetric analysis, X-ray diffraction (XRD), and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) attached to an energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy detector. For the first time, morphology of the HAp particles was predicted by XRD, and it was verified by SEM. The results show that an equiaxed polycrystalline HAp particle with uniform porosity was produced at 900 °C. It indicates that a porous nanoHAp achieved by sintering at 900 °C can be an ideal candidate as an in situ scaffold for load-bearing tissue applications.
Selecting a proper support in the catalyst system plays an important role in hydrogen production via ethanol steam reforming. In this study, sol gel made alumina supports prepared for nickel (Ni) catalysts were calcined at different temperatures. A series of (Ni/AlS.G.) catalysts were synthesized by an impregnation procedure. The influence of varying the calcination temperature of the sol gel made supports on catalyst activity was tested in ethanol reforming reaction. The characteristics of the sol gel alumina supports and Ni catalysts were affected by the calcination temperature of the supports. The structure of the sol gel made alumina supports was transformed in the order of γ → (γ + θ) → θ-alumina as the calcination temperature of the supports increased from 600 °C to 1000 °C. Both hydrogen yield and ethanol conversion presented a volcano-shaped behavior with maximum values of 4.3 mol/mol ethanol fed and 99.5%, respectively. The optimum values were exhibited over Ni/AlS.G800 (Ni catalyst supported on sol gel made alumina calcined at 800 °C). The high performance of the Ni/AlS.G800 catalyst may be attributed to the strong interaction of Ni species and sol gel made alumina which lead to high nickel dispersion and small particle size.
2-(1-methyl-4-((E)-(2-methylbenzylidene)amino)-2-phenyl-1H-pyrazol-3(2H)-ylidene)-hydrazineecarbothioamide (HCB) was synthesized as a corrosion inhibitor from the reaction of 4-aminoantipyrine, thiosemicarbazide and 2-methylbenzaldehyde. The corrosion inhibitory effects of HCB on mild steel in 1.0 M HCl were investigated using potentiodynamic polarization (PDP) and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS). The results showed that HCB inhibited mild steel corrosion in acidic solution and inhibition efficiency increased with an increase in the concentration of the inhibitor. The inhibition efficiency was up to 96.5% at 5.0 mM. Changes in the impedance parameters suggested that HCB adsorbed on the surface of mild steel, leading to the formation of a protective film. The novel corrosion inhibitor synthesized in the present study was characterized using Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectral data.
An ionic liquid, 1-n-butyl-3-methylimidazolium chloride (BmimCl) was blended with urea at 1:1 mole ratio to create a BmimCl/Urea mixture. The agarose/talc composite films containing the BmimCl/Urea mixture were then acquired through a gelation method. The weight ratio of agarose and talc was fixed at 4:1, while the content of BmimCl/Urea was varied from 0 to 10 wt % relative to the overall weight of the composite films. The tensile stress and modulus results showed the optimum BmimCl/Urea content in the composite film lies at 8 wt %. The talc particles are embedded in the agarose matrix and there are no pullouts for the composite films containing BmimCl/Urea as demonstrated by SEM micrographs. The addition of BmimCl/Urea increased the glass transition temperature of the composite films, however, the thermal decomposition temperature decreased drastically. FTIR and FT-Raman spectra indicated the existence of interaction between agarose and talc, which improves their interfacial adhesion. As a conclusion, a BmimCl/Urea mixture can be utilized as a coupling agent for agarose/talc composite films.
A compact planar meander-bridge high impedance electromagnetic structure (MBHIES) was designed and its bandgap characteristics, mutual coupling reduction abilities were studied and compared in detail. Several parametric analyses were performed to obtain optimized design values and the transmission responses were calculated through the suspended microstrip line and waveguide simulation methods. The achieved bandgap is 2.3 GHz (2.55-4.85 GHz) with -61 dB minimum transmission coefficient level at the center frequency of 3.6 GHz. To see the effectiveness, the proposed design was inserted between a microstrip patch antenna array which operates at 3.8 GHz and whose operating bandwidth falls within the MBHIES bandgap. The surface wave suppression phenomenon was analyzed and simulated results are verified by measuring the fabricated prototypes, both are in good agreement. The configuration reduced the mutual coupling by 20.69 dB in simulation and 19.18 dB in measurement, without affecting the radiation characteristics of the array but increasing the gain slightly.
Porous silicon (PSi) layers were formed on a p-type Si wafer. Six samples were anodised electrically with a 30 mA/cm² fixed current density for different etching times. The samples were coated with a 50-60 nm gold layer and annealed at different temperatures under Ar flow. The morphology of the layers, before and after annealing, formed by this method was investigated by scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Photoacoustic spectroscopy (PAS) measurements were carried out to measure the thermal diffusivity (TD) of the PSi and Au/PSi samples. For the Au/PSi samples, the thermal diffusivity was measured before and after annealing to study the effect of annealing. Also to study the aging effect, a comparison was made between freshly annealed samples and samples 30 days after annealing.