Abstract: In this study, an electroactive polymer (EAP), poly(2,5-bis(N-methyl-N- hexylamino)phenylene vinylene) (BAM-PPV), was tested as an alternative to current hexavalent chromium (Cr(VI))-based Army wash primers. BAM-PPV was tested in both laboratory and field studies to determine its adhesive and corrosion-inhibiting properties when applied to steel and aluminum alloys. The Army Research Laboratory (ARL) tests showed that BAM-PPV combined with an epoxy primer and the Army chemical agent-resistant coating (CARC) topcoat met Army performance requirements for military coatings. After successful laboratory testing, the BAM-PPV was then field tested for one year at the Aberdeen Test Center (ATC). This field testing showed that BAM-PPV incorporated into the Army military coating survived with no delamination of the coating and only minor corrosion on the chip sites.
Abstract: In damp environments, indoor building materials are among the main proliferation substrates for microorganisms. Photocatalytic coatings, including nanoparticles of TiO2, could be a way to prevent microbial proliferation or, at least, to significantly reduce the amount of microorganisms that grow on indoor building materials. Previous works involving TiO2 have already shown the inactivation of bacteria by the photocatalysis process. This paper studies the inactivation of Escherichia coli bacteria by photocatalysis involving TiO2 nanoparticles alone or in transparent coatings (varnishes) and investigates different parameters that significantly influence the antibacterial activity. The antibacterial activity of TiO2 was evaluated through two types of experiments under UV irradiation: (I) in slurry with physiological water (stirred suspension); and (II) in a drop deposited on a glass plate. The results confirmed the difference in antibacterial activity between simple drop-deposited inoculum and inoculum spread under a plastic film, which increased the probability of contact between TiO2 and bacteria (forced contact). In addition, the major effect of the nature of the suspension on the photocatalytic disinfection ability was highlighted. Experiments were also carried out at the surface of transparent coatings formulated using nanoparticles of TiO2. The results showed significant antibacterial activities after 2 h and 4 h and suggested that improving the formulation would increase efficiency.
Abstract: The photocatalytic activity and stability of thin, polycrystalline ZnO films was studied. The oxidative degradation of organic compounds at the ZnO surface results from the ultraviolet (UV) photo-induced creation of highly oxidizing holes and reducing electrons, which combine with surface water to form hydroxyl radicals and reactive oxygen species. Therefore, the efficiency of the electron-hole pair formation is of critical importance for self-cleaning and antimicrobial applications with these metal-oxide catalyst systems. In this study, ZnO thin films were fabricated on sapphire substrates via direct current sputter deposition of Zn-metal films followed by thermal oxidation at several annealing temperatures (300–1200 °C). Due to the ease with which they can be recovered, stabilized films are preferable to nanoparticles or colloidal suspensions for some applications. Characterization of the resulting ZnO thin films through atomic force microscopy and photoluminescence indicated that decreasing annealing temperature leads to smaller crystal grain size and increased UV excitonic emission. The photocatalytic activities were characterized by UV-visible absorption measurements of Rhodamine B dye concentrations. The films oxidized at lower annealing temperatures exhibited higher photocatalytic activity, which is attributed to the increased optical quality. Photocatalytic activity was also found to depend on film thickness, with lower activity observed for thinner films. Decreasing activity with use was found to be the result of decreasing film thickness due to surface etching.
Abstract: Suspension plasma spraying (SPS) has become an interesting method for the production of thermal barrier coatings for gas turbine components. The development of the SPS process has led to structures with segmented vertical cracks or column-like structures that can imitate strain-tolerant air plasma spraying (APS) or electron beam physical vapor deposition (EB-PVD) coatings. Additionally, SPS coatings can have lower thermal conductivity than EB-PVD coatings, while also being easier to produce. The combination of similar or improved properties with a potential for lower production costs makes SPS of great interest to the gas turbine industry. This study compares a number of SPS thermal barrier coatings (TBCs) with vertical cracks or column-like structures with the reference of segmented APS coatings. The primary focus has been on lifetime testing of these new coating systems. Samples were tested in thermo-cyclic fatigue at temperatures of 1100 °C for 1 h cycles. Additional testing was performed to assess thermal shock performance and erosion resistance. Thermal conductivity was also assessed for samples in their as-sprayed state, and the microstructures were investigated using SEM.
Abstract: Surfaces are often coated with paint for improved aesthetics and protection; however, additional functionalities that impart continuous self-decontaminating and self-cleaning properties would be extremely advantageous. In this report, photochemical additives based on C60 fullerene were incorporated into polyurethane coatings to investigate their coating compatibility and ability to impart chemical decontaminating capability to the coating surface. C60 exhibits unique photophysical properties, including the capability to generate singlet oxygen upon exposure to visible light; however, C60 fullerene exhibits poor solubility in solvents commonly employed in coating applications. A modified C60 containing a hydrophilic moiety was synthesized to improve polyurethane compatibility and facilitate segregation to the polymer–air interface. Bulk properties of the polyurethane films were analyzed to investigate additive–coating compatibility. Coatings containing photoactive additives were subjected to self-decontamination challenges against representative chemical contaminants and the effects of additive loading concentration, light exposure, and time on chemical decontamination are reported. Covalent attachment of an ethylene glycol tail to C60 improved its solubility and dispersion in a hydrophobic polyurethane matrix. Decomposition products resulting from oxidation were observed in addition to a direct correlation between additive loading concentration and decomposition of surface-residing contaminants. The degradation pathways deduced from contaminant challenge byproduct analyses are detailed.
Abstract: Nowadays, cold technology for asphalt pavement in the field of road construction is considered as an alternative solution to conventional procedures from both an economic and environmental point of view. Among these techniques, bituminous slurry surfacing is obtaining an important role due to the properties of the obtained wearing course. The functional performance of this type of surfaces is directly related to its rough texture. Nevertheless, this parameter has a significant influence on the tire/road noise generation. To reduce this undesirable effect on the sound performance, new designs of elastic bituminous slurries have been developed. Within the FENIX project, this work presents the acoustical characterization of an experimental bituminous slurry with crumb rubber from wasted automobile tires incorporated by the dry process. The obtained results show that, under controlled operational parameters, the close proximity sound levels associated to the experimental slurry are considerably lower than those emitted by a conventional slurry wearing course. However, after one year of supporting traffic loads and different weather conditions, the evaluated bituminous slurry, although it conserves the original noise reduction properties in relation to the conventional one, noticeably increases the generated sound emission. Therefore, it is required to continue improving the design of experimental surfaces in order to enhance its long-term performance.