Materials2014, 7(9), 6194-6206; doi:10.3390/ma7096194 - published 29 August 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: In order to investigate the relationship between phase/microstructure and various properties of Ti–xAg alloys, a series of Ti–xAg alloys with Ag contents ranging from 5 to 20 wt% were prepared. The microstructures were characterized using X-ray diffractometry (XRD), optical microscopy (OM), scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). All of the Ti–xAg alloys showed a massive transformation from the β-Ti to αm phase, which has a different crystal structure from that of the matrix phase, but it has the same composition as the matrix α-Ti phase. As a result of solid-solution strengthening of α-Ti and massive transformation phase, the Ti–xAg showed better mechanical properties than the commercially pure titanium (cp-Ti). Electrochemical results showed that the Ti–xAg alloys exhibited improved corrosion resistance and oxidation resistance than cp-Ti.
Materials2014, 7(9), 6184-6193; doi:10.3390/ma7096184 - published 29 August 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Indigo is one of the most important dyes in the textile industry. The control of the indigo concentration in dyeing liquors and effluents is an important tool to ensure the reproducibility of the dyed fabrics and also to establish the efficiency of the wastewater treatment. In this work, three analytical methods were studied and validated with the aim to select a reliable, fast and automated method for the indigo dye determination. The first method is based on the extraction of the dye, with chloroform, in its oxidized form. The organic solution is measured by Ultraviolet (UV)-visible spectrophotometry at 604 nm. The second method determines the concentration of indigo in its leuco form in aqueous medium by UV-visible spectrophotometry at 407 nm. Finally, in the last method, the concentration of indigo is determined by redox titration with potassium hexacyanoferrate (K3(Fe(CN)6)). The results indicated that the three methods that we studied met the established acceptance criteria regarding accuracy and precision. However, the third method was considered the most adequate for application on an industrial scale due to its wider work range, which provides a significant advantage over the others.
Materials2014, 7(9), 6169-6183; doi:10.3390/ma7096169 - published 29 August 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: A polycarboxylate superplasticizer (PCE) was synthesized in a non-solvent system with bulk polymerization and then was pulverized into powdered form to achieve a rapid transportation and convenient preparation. PCE synthesized by using isopentenyl polyethylene glycol (TPEG) or isobutenyl polyethylene glycol (IPEG) as a macromonomer exhibited the best fluidities and retaining properties at 80 °C and 75 °C, respectively. Besides, azobisisobutyronitrile (AIBN) was suitable as an initiator, and the fumaric acid was suitable as the third monomer. The test results of 1H nuclear magnetic resonance (1H NMR) confirmed the occurrences of polymerization, and the measurement results of molecular weight and distribution showed that PCE molecular weight characteristics were in accordance with their fluidity properties in cement paste. The application performances in cement showed that PCEs with the best paste fluidity retentions had the longest final setting time and the shortest setting time interval, and the PCEs with good fluidity properties can obviously delay the hydration process and lower the hydration heat. Accordingly, this is a novel, energy-saving and economical method to prepare powdered PCE in the field of concrete admixtures.
Materials2014, 7(9), 6158-6168; doi:10.3390/ma7096158 - published 28 August 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Here, we monitor the dissolution of several natural protein fibres such as wool, human hair and silk, in various ionic liquids (ILs). The dissolution of protein-based materials using ILs is an emerging area exploring the production of new materials from waste products. Wool is a keratin fibre, which is extensively used in the textiles industry and as a result has considerable amounts of waste produced each year. Wool, along with human hair, has a unique morphology whereby the outer layer, the cuticle, is heavily cross linked with disulphide bonds, whereas silk does not have this outer layer. Here we show how ILs dissolve natural protein fibres and how the mechanism of dissolution is directly related to the structure and morphology of the wool fibre.
Materials2014, 7(9), 6144-6157; doi:10.3390/ma7096144 - published 27 August 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: The corrosion behavior of pure Fe under a Na2SO4 deposit in an atmosphere of O2 + H2O was investigated at 500 °C by thermo gravimetric, and electrochemical measurements, viz. potentiodynamic polarization, electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS), and surface characterization methods viz. X-ray diffraction (XRD), and scanning electron microscope (SEM)/energy dispersive spectroscopy(EDS). The results showed that a synergistic effect occurred between Na2SO4 and O2 + H2O, which significantly accelerated the corrosion rate of the pure Fe. Briefly, NaFeO2 was formed in addition to the customary Fe oxides; at the same time, H2SO4 gas was produced by introduction of water vapor. Subsequently, an electrochemical corrosion reaction occurred due to the existence of Na2SO4, NaFeO2, and H2O. When this coupled to the chemical corrosion reaction, the progress of the chemical corrosion reaction was promoted and eventually resulted in the acceleration of the corrosion of the pure Fe.
Materials2014, 7(9), 6130-6143; doi:10.3390/ma7096130 - published 26 August 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Bituminous materials are playing a vital role in pavement design and the roofing industry because of outstanding properties. Unfortunately, bituminous materials will release volatile organic compounds (VOC), making them non-environmentally friendly. Therefore, technologies that can be used to decrease the VOC emission are urgently required. In this research, the VOC emission and material behaviors were analyzed and compared to investigate the possibility of adding styrene butadiene styrene (SBS) and active carbon filler into bituminous materials to develop environmentally-friendly materials. Thermal gravimetric analysis-mass spectrometry (TG-MS) and ultraviolet-visible spectroscopy testing (UV-Vis) were employed to characterize the VOC emission process. Temperature sweep testing and frequency sweep testing were conducted to evaluate the rheological properties of bituminous materials. Research results indicated that the combined introduction of 4 wt% styrene butadiene styrene (SBS) and 4 wt% active carbon filler cannot only significantly lower the VOC emission speed and amount, but also improve the deformation resistance behavior at a higher temperature. SBS and active carbon filler can be used to reduce the VOC emission form bituminous materials.