Graphene oxide (GO) film was evaporated onto graphite and used as an electrode to produce electrochemically reduced graphene oxide (ERGO) films by electrochemical reduction in 6 M KOH solution through voltammetric cycling. Fourier transformed infrared and Raman spectroscopy confirmed the presence of ERGO. Electrochemical impedance spectroscopy characterization of ERGO and GO films in ferrocyanide/ferricyanide redox couple with 0.1 M KCl supporting electrolyte gave results that are in accordance with previous reports. Based on the EIS results, ERGO shows higher capacitance and lower charge transfer resistance compared to GO.
In this study, titanium thin films were deposited on alumina substrates by radio frequency (RF) magnetron sputtering. The mechanical properties of the Ti coatings were evaluated in terms of adhesion strength at various RF powers, temperatures, and substrate bias voltages. The coating conditions of 400W of RF power, 250°C, and a 75V substrate bias voltage produced the strongest coating adhesion, as obtained by the Taguchi optimisation method. TiO2 nanotube arrays were grown as a second layer on the Ti substrates using electrochemical anodisation at a constant potential of 20V and anodisation times of 15min, 45min, and 75min in a NH4F electrolyte solution (75 ethylene glycol: 25 water). The anodised titanium was annealed at 450°C and 650°C in a N2 gas furnace to obtain different phases of titania, anatase and rutile, respectively. The mechanical properties of the anodised layer were investigated by nanoindentation. The results indicate that Young's modulus and hardness increased with annealing temperature to 650°C.
The effect of the addition of an ionic dopant to calcium phosphates for biomedical applications requires specific research due to the essential roles played in such processes. In the present study, the mechanical and biological properties of Ni-doped hydroxyapatite (HA) and Ni-doped HA mixed with graphene nanoplatelets (GNPs) were evaluated. Ni (3wt.% and 6wt.%)-doped HA was synthesized using a continuous precipitation method and calcined at 900°C for 1h. The GNP (0.5-2wt.%)-reinforced 6% Ni-doped HA (Ni6) composite was prepared using rotary ball milling for 15h. The sintering process was performed using hot isostatic pressing at processing conditions of 1150°C and 160MPa with a 1-h holding time. The results indicated that the phase compositions and structural features of the products were noticeably affected by the Ni and GNPs. The mechanical properties of Ni6 and 1.5Ni6 were increased by 55% and 75% in hardness, 59% and 163% in fracture toughness and 120% and 85% in elastic modulus compared with monolithic HA, respectively. The in-vitro biological behavior was investigated using h-FOB osteoblast cells in 1, 3 and 5days of culture. Based on the osteoblast results, the cytotoxicity of the products was indeed affected by the Ni doping. In addition, the effect of GNPs on the growth and proliferation of osteoblast cells was investigated in Ni6 composites containing different ratios of GNPs, where 1.5wt.% was the optimum value.
Calcium silicate hydrate (CSH) consisting of nanosheets has been successfully synthesized assisted by a tip ultrasonic irradiation (UI) method using calcium nitrate (Ca(NO3)·4H2O), sodium silicate (Na2SiO3·9H2O) and sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) in water. Systematic studies found that reaction time of ultrasonic irradiation and concentrations of surfactant (SDS) in the system were important factors to control the crystallite size and morphologies. The products were characterized by X-ray power diffraction (XRD), field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM) and Fourier transform infrared spectrometry (FTIR). The size-strain plot (SSP) method was used to study the individual contributions of crystallite sizes and lattice strain on the peak broadening of the CSH. These characterization techniques revealed the successful formation of a crystalline phase with an average crystallite size of about 13 nm and nanosheet morphology at a reaction time of 10 min UI with 0.2 g SDS in solvent which were found to be optimum time and concentrations of SDS for the synthesis of CSH powders.
An experimental as well as numerical investigation was conducted on the melting/solidification processes of a stationary phase change material (PCM) in a shell around a finned-tube heat exchanger system. The PCM was stored in the horizontal annular space between a shell and finned-tube where distilled water was employed as the heat transfer fluid (HTF). The focus of this study was on the behavior of PCM for storage (charging or melting) and removal (discharging or solidification), as well as the effect of flow rate on the charged and discharged solar thermal energy. The impact of the Reynolds number was determined and the results were compared with each other to reveal the changes in amount of stored thermal energy with the variation of heat transfer fluid flow rates. The results showed that, by increasing the Reynolds number from 1000 to 2000, the total melting time decreases by 58%. The process of solidification also will speed up with increasing Reynolds number in the discharging process. The results also indicated that the fluctuation of gradient temperature decreased and became smooth with increasing Reynolds number. As a result, by increasing the Reynolds number in the charging process, the theoretical efficiency rises.
An intercomparison exercise (IC) on whole body dosemeters to determine the quantity personal dose equivalent Hp (10) in photon radiation fields was jointly organised and conducted by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA) for individual monitoring services (IMS) in Asia and the Pacific region. This was arranged to help the IMS in the region to achieve a more accurate dosimetry service and to improve their performance. Twenty-four IMS participated in this IC. Four sets of dosemeters were irradiated using X-ray and gamma radiation qualities at 0° and 20° angle of incidence, respectively. All the IMS provided results that were within the acceptable limits defined by the IAEA. However, only a minority of participants reported confidence intervals that included the reference dose, for each exposure scenario. For few systems, the overall performance could be significantly improved by reviewing calibration procedures.
Graphene oxide (GO) was deposited on the surface of a MnO2 air cathode by thermal evaporation at 50°C from a GO colloidal suspension. Fourier transformed infrared spectroscopy and field emission scanning electron microscopy confirmed the presence of GO on the MnO2 air cathode (GO-MnO2). Voltammetry and chrono-amperometry showed increased currents for the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) in 6 M KOH solution for GO-MnO2 compared to the MnO2 cathode. The GO-MnO2 was used as an air cathode in an alkaline tin-air cell and produced a maximum power density of 13 mW cm(-2), in contrast to MnO2, which produced a maximum power density of 9.2 mW cm(-2). The electrochemical impedance spectroscopy results suggest that the chemical step for the ORR is the rate determining step, as proposed earlier by different researchers. It is suggested that the presence of GO and electrochemically reduced graphene oxide (ERGO) on the MnO2 surface are responsible for the increased rate of this step, whereby GO and ERGO accelerate the process of electron donation to the MnO2 and to adsorbed oxygen atoms.
Calcium silicate (CaSiO3, CS) ceramic composites reinforced with graphene nanoplatelets (GNP) were prepared using hot isostatic pressing (HIP) at 1150°C. Quantitative microstructural analysis suggests that GNP play a role in grain size and is responsible for the improved densification. Raman spectroscopy and scanning electron microscopy showed that GNP survived the harsh processing conditions of the selected HIP processing parameters. The uniform distribution of 1 wt.% GNP in the CS matrix, high densification and fine CS grain size help to improve the fracture toughness by ∼130%, hardness by ∼30% and brittleness index by ∼40% as compared to the CS matrix without GNP. The toughening mechanisms, such as crack bridging, pull-out, branching and deflection induced by GNP are observed and discussed. The GNP/CS composites exhibit good apatite-forming ability in the simulated body fluid (SBF). Our results indicate that the addition of GNP decreased pH value in SBF. Effect of addition of GNP on early adhesion and proliferation of human osteoblast cells (hFOB) was measured in vitro. The GNP/CS composites showed good biocompatibility and promoted cell viability and cell proliferation. The results indicated that the cell viability and proliferation are affected by time and concentration of GNP in the CS matrix.
Calcium silicate (CaSiO3, CS) ceramics are promising bioactive materials for bone tissue engineering, particularly for bone repair. However, the low toughness of CS limits its application in load-bearing conditions. Recent findings indicating the promising biocompatibility of graphene imply that graphene can be used as an additive to improve the mechanical properties of composites. Here, we report a simple method for the synthesis of calcium silicate/reduced graphene oxide (CS/rGO) composites using a hydrothermal approach followed by hot isostatic pressing (HIP). Adding rGO to pure CS increased the hardness of the material by ∼40%, the elastic modulus by ∼52%, and the fracture toughness by ∼123%. Different toughening mechanisms were observed including crack bridging, crack branching, crack deflection, and rGO pull-out, thus increasing the resistance to crack propagation and leading to a considerable improvement in the fracture toughness of the composites. The formation of bone-like apatite on a range of CS/rGO composites with rGO weight percentages ranging from 0 to 1.5 has been investigated in simulated body fluid (SBF). The presence of a bone-like apatite layer on the composite surface after soaking in SBF was demonstrated by X-ray diffraction (XRD) and field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM). The biocompatibility of the CS/rGO composites was characterized using methyl thiazole tetrazolium (MTT) assays in vitro. The cell adhesion results showed that human osteoblast cells (hFOB) can adhere to and develop on the CS/rGO composites. In addition, the proliferation rate and alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity of cells on the CS/rGO composites were improved compared with the pure CS ceramics. These results suggest that calcium silicate/reduced graphene oxide composites are promising materials for biomedical applications.
The current COVID-19 pandemic outbreak poses a serious threat to public health, demonstrating the critical need for the development of effective and reproducible detection tests. Since the RT-qPCR primers are highly specific and can only be designed based on the known sequence, mutation sensitivity is its limitation. Moreover, the mutations in the severe acute respiratory syndrome β-coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) genome led to new highly transmissible variants such as Delta and Omicron variants. In the case of mutation, RT-qPCR primers cannot recognize and attach to the target sequence. This research presents an accurate dual-platform DNA biosensor based on the colorimetric assay of gold nanoparticles and the surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) technique. It simultaneously targets four different regions of the viral genome for detection of SARS-CoV-2 and its new variants prior to any sequencing. Hence, in the case of mutation in one of the target sequences, the other three probes could detect the SARS-CoV-2 genome. The method is based on visible biosensor color shift and a locally enhanced electromagnetic field and significantly amplified SERS signal due to the proximity of Sulfo-Cyanine 3 (Cy3) and AuNPs intensity peak at 1468 cm-1. The dual-platform DNA/GO/AuNP biosensor exhibits high sensitivity toward the viral genome with a LOD of 0.16 ng/µL. This is a safe point-of-care, naked-eye, equipment-free, and rapid (10 min) detection biosensor for diagnosing COVID-19 cases at home using a nasopharyngeal sample.
This paper presents the results of the evaluation of the uncertainty in measurement of the personal dose equivalent, Hp(10), at nine individual monitoring services (IMSs) in Asia and the Pacific region. Different types of passive dosemeters were type-tested according to the International Electrotechnical Commission 62387 requirements. The uncertainty in measurement was calculated using the Guide to the Expression of Uncertainty in Measurement approach. Expanded uncertainties ranged between 24 and 86% (average = 38%) for Hp(10) values around 1 mSv and between 14 and 40% (average = 27%) for doses around the annual dose limit, Hp(10) = 20 mSv. The expanded uncertainties were lower than the 1.5 factor in either direction proposed by the International Commission on Radiological Protection for doses near the relevant dose limits. This indicates an acceptable level of uncertainty for all participating IMSs. Uncertainty evaluation will help the IMSs to acknowledge the accuracy of their measurements.