Materials2015, 8(3), 899-913; doi:10.3390/ma8030899 (registering DOI) - published 3 March 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: A full-scale experimental program was used in this study to investigate the structural behavior of novel insulated concrete sandwich wall panels (SWPs) reinforced with grid-type glass-fiber-reinforced polymer (GFRP) shear connectors. Two kinds of insulation-expanded polystyrene (EPS) and extruded polystyrene (XPS) with 100 mm thickness were incased between the two concrete wythes to meet the increasing demand for the insulation performance of building envelope. One to four GFRP shear grids were used to examine the degree of composite action of the two concrete wythes. Ten specimens of SWPs were tested under displacement control subjected to four-point concentrated loads. The test results showed that the SWPs reinforced with GFRP grids as shear connectors developed a high degree of composite action resulting in high flexural strength. The specimens with EPS foam exhibited an enhanced load-displacement behavior compared with the specimens with XPS because of the relatively stronger bond between insulation and concrete. In addition, the ultimate strength of the test results was compared to the analytical prediction with the mechanical properties of only GRFP grids. The specimens with EPS insulation presented higher strength-based composite action than the ones with XPS insulation.
Materials2015, 8(3), 884-898; doi:10.3390/ma8030884 - published 2 March 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: 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.
Materials2015, 8(3), 867-883; doi:10.3390/ma8030867 - published 2 March 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Titanium (Ti) and its alloys are amongst the most commonly-used biomaterials in orthopedic and dental applications. The Ti-aluminum-vanadium alloy (Ti6Al4V) is widely used as a biomaterial for these applications by virtue of its favorable properties, such as high tensile strength, good biocompatibility and excellent corrosion resistance. TiO2 nanotube (NTs) layers formed by anodization on Ti6Al4V alloy have been shown to improve osteoblast adhesion and function when compared to non-anodized material. In his study, NTs were grown on a Ti6Al4V alloy by anodic oxidation for 5 min using a super-oxidative aqueous solution, and their in vitro biocompatibility was investigated in pig periosteal osteoblasts and cartilage chondrocytes. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM), energy dispersion X-ray analysis (EDX) and atomic force microscopy (AFM) were used to characterize the materials. Cell morphology was analyzed by SEM and AFM. Cell viability was examined by fluorescence microscopy. Cell adhesion was evaluated by nuclei staining and cell number quantification by fluorescence microscopy. The average diameter of the NTs was 80 nm. The results demonstrate improved cell adhesion and viability at Day 1 and Day 3 of cell growth on the nanostructured material as compared to the non-anodized alloy. In conclusion, this study evidences the suitability of NTs grown on Ti6Al4V alloy using a super-oxidative water and a short anodization process to enhance the adhesion and viability of osteoblasts and chondrocytes. The results warrant further investigation for its use as medical implant materials.
Materials2015, 8(3), 850-866; doi:10.3390/ma8030850 - published 2 March 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: This in vitro study was conducted to evaluate the shear bond strength of “non-self-adhesive” resin to dental zirconia etched with hydrofluoric acid (HF) at room temperature and to compare it to that of air-abraded zirconia. Sintered zirconia plates were air-abraded (control) or etched with 10%, 20%, or 30% HF for either 5 or 30 min. After cleaning, the surfaces were characterized using various analytical techniques. Three resin cylinders (Duo-Link) were bonded to each treated plate. All bonded specimens were stored in water at 37 °C for 24 h, and then half of them were additionally thermocycled 5000 times prior to the shear bond-strength tests (n = 12). The formation of micro- and nano-porosities on the etched surfaces increased with increasing concentration and application time of the HF solution. The surface wettability of zirconia also increased with increasing surface roughness. Higher concentrations and longer application times of the HF solution produced higher bond-strength values. Infiltration of the resin into the micro- and nano-porosities was observed by scanning electron microscopy. This in vitro study suggests that HF slowly etches zirconia ceramic surfaces at room temperature, thereby improving the resin–zirconia bond strength by the formation of retentive sites.
Materials2015, 8(3), 832-849; doi:10.3390/ma8030832 - published 27 February 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: In the present study, Eudragit S100 coated Citrus Pectin Nanoparticles (E-CPNs) were prepared for the colon targeting of 5-Fluorouracil (5-FU). Citrus pectin also acts as a ligand for galectin-3 receptors that are over expressed on colorectal cancer cells. Nanoparticles (CPNs and E-CPNs) were characterized for various physical parameters such as particle size, size distribution, and shape etc. In vitro drug release studies revealed selective drug release in the colonic region in the case of E-CPNs of more than 70% after 24 h. In vitro cytoxicity assay (Sulphorhodamine B assay) was performed against HT-29 cancer cells and exhibited 1.5 fold greater cytotoxicity potential of nanoparticles compared to 5-FU solution. In vivo data clearly depicted that Eudragit S100 successfully guarded nanoparticles to reach the colonic region wherein nanoparticles were taken up and showed drug release for an extended period of time. Therefore, a multifaceted strategy is introduced here in terms of receptor mediated uptake and pH-dependent release using E-CPNs for effective chemotherapy of colorectal cancer with uncompromised safety and efficacy.
Materials2015, 8(2), 829-831; doi:10.3390/ma8020829 - published 17 February 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Materials has established an annual award for the best article and for the best review published in Materials in order to acknowledge the outstanding contributions of our authors in the area of materials science and engineering.[...]