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Materials, Volume 11, Issue 12 (December 2018)

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Cover Story (view full-size image) In the search for new, better tools to fight cancer we have developed a new hybrid nanoparticulate [...] Read more.
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Open AccessArticle Flexural and Shear Strain Characteristics of Carbon Fiber Reinforced Polymer Composite Adhered to a Concrete Surface
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2596; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122596
Received: 9 November 2018 / Revised: 13 December 2018 / Accepted: 16 December 2018 / Published: 19 December 2018
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Abstract
The use of Fiber Reinforced Polymer (FRP) composites for strengthening concrete structures has gained a lot of popularity in the past couple of decades. The major issue in the retrofitting of concrete structures with FRP is the accurate evaluation of flexural and shear [...] Read more.
The use of Fiber Reinforced Polymer (FRP) composites for strengthening concrete structures has gained a lot of popularity in the past couple of decades. The major issue in the retrofitting of concrete structures with FRP is the accurate evaluation of flexural and shear strains of polymer composites at the bonding interface of epoxy and concrete. To address it, a comprehensive experimental study was planned and carbon fiber reinforced polymer (CFRP) composite was applied on the concrete surface with the help of adhesives. CFRP was used as an external mounted flexural and shear reinforcement to strengthen the beams. Flexural load tests were performed on a group of eight reinforced concrete beams. These beams were strengthened in flexural and shear by different reinforcement ratios of CFRP. The strain gauges were applied on the surface of concrete and CFRP strips to assess the strain of both CFRP and concrete under flexural and shear stresses. The resulting test data is presented in the form of load–deformation and strain values. It was found that the values of strains transferred to the FRP through the concrete are highly dependent on the surface tensile properties of concrete and debonding strength of the adhesive. The test results clearly indicated that the strength increment in flexural members is highly dependent on strain values of the CFRP. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Polymer Composites and Interfaces)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Fabrication of Functional Carbon/Magnetic Nanocomposites as A Promising Model of Utilization of Used Crosslinked Polymers
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2595; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122595
Received: 29 October 2018 / Revised: 7 December 2018 / Accepted: 17 December 2018 / Published: 19 December 2018
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Abstract
The utilization of used crosslinked functional polymers (CFP) applied as sorbents or ion-exchangers is a great challenge arising from the need to protect the environment. In this paper we report a very promising way of obtaining carbon/magnetic composites based on metal (Co2+ [...] Read more.
The utilization of used crosslinked functional polymers (CFP) applied as sorbents or ion-exchangers is a great challenge arising from the need to protect the environment. In this paper we report a very promising way of obtaining carbon/magnetic composites based on metal (Co2+; Ni2+; Fe3+) derivatives of butadiene rubber-based phosphorus-containing polymer, which were treated as the model used CFP. We proposed a facile one-step thermal degradation approach to transform used CFP into carbon/magnetic composites (CMC). The obtained CMCs contained a mixture of metal phosphates and metal phosphides that exhibited strong magnetic properties due to the presence of nanosized metal derivatives with diameters of 100–140 nm. Structural and morphological changes of CFP and CMC after thermal degradation were investigated by the FTIR technique, X-ray Diffraction analysis, Scanning Electron Microscope, and Atomic Force Microscope–Magnetic Force Microscope. Moreover, thermal degradation kinetics parameters were determined to optimize the efficiency of the process. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Multi-Functional Materials and Nanocomposites)
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Open AccessArticle Hydrophobicity and Photocatalytic Activity of a Wood Surface Coated with a Fe3+-Doped SiO2/TiO2 Film
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2594; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122594
Received: 6 December 2018 / Revised: 16 December 2018 / Accepted: 17 December 2018 / Published: 19 December 2018
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Abstract
A Fe3+-doped SiO2/TiO2 composite film (Fe3+-doped STCF) was prepared on a wood surface via a sol–gel method to improve its photocatalytic activity and hydrophobicity. The structure of the composite film was analyzed by Fourier Transform infrared [...] Read more.
A Fe3+-doped SiO2/TiO2 composite film (Fe3+-doped STCF) was prepared on a wood surface via a sol–gel method to improve its photocatalytic activity and hydrophobicity. The structure of the composite film was analyzed by Fourier Transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), X-ray diffraction (XRD), and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). The photocatalytic activity toward degradation of methyl orange and its hydrophobic nature were investigated. The results showed that the composite film was anatase TiO2 crystal form, and the addition of Fe3+ ions and SiO2 enhanced the diffraction peaks for the anatase crystal form. The photocatalytic activity of the wood coated with the composite film was enhanced. The highest degradation percentage was at 1 wt % Fe3+ (40.37%), and the degradation ability of the wood towards methyl orange solution was further improved under acidic conditions. In addition, the composite film was hydrophobic, and the hydrophobic property was enhanced as the immersion time in the sol increased. The wood surface coated with Fe3+-doped STCF exhibited strong hydrophobicity and photocatalytic activity, which could effectively prevent moisture from adhering to the surface and degrade organic pollutants; thus, the modified wood surface had good self-cleaning function. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Self-Cleaning Surfaces)
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Open AccessArticle Metal Oxide Thin-Film Heterojunctions for Photovoltaic Applications
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2593; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122593
Received: 9 November 2018 / Revised: 4 December 2018 / Accepted: 6 December 2018 / Published: 19 December 2018
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Abstract
Silicon-based tandem solar cells incorporating low-cost, abundant, and non-toxic metal oxide materials can increase the conversion efficiency of silicon solar cells beyond their conventional limitations with obvious economic and environmental benefits. In this work, the electrical characteristics of a metal oxide thin-film heterojunction [...] Read more.
Silicon-based tandem solar cells incorporating low-cost, abundant, and non-toxic metal oxide materials can increase the conversion efficiency of silicon solar cells beyond their conventional limitations with obvious economic and environmental benefits. In this work, the electrical characteristics of a metal oxide thin-film heterojunction solar cell based on a cuprous oxide (Cu2O) absorber layer were investigated. Highly Al-doped n-type ZnO (AZO) and undoped p-type Cu2O thin films were prepared on quartz substrates by magnetron sputter deposition. The electrical and optical properties of these thin films were determined from Hall effect measurements and spectroscopic ellipsometry. After annealing the Cu2O film at 900 °C, the majority carrier (hole) mobility and the resistivity were measured at 50 cm2/V·s and 200 Ω·cm, respectively. Numerical modeling was carried out to investigate the effect of band alignment and interface defects on the electrical characteristics of the AZO/Cu2O heterojunction. The analysis suggests that the incorporation of a buffer layer can enhance the performance of the heterojunction solar cell as a result of reduced conduction band offset. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Nanostructures for Photonics and Photovoltaics)
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Open AccessReview Progress on the Synthesis and Application of CuSCN Inorganic Hole Transport Material in Perovskite Solar Cells
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2592; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122592
Received: 24 October 2018 / Revised: 13 November 2018 / Accepted: 17 November 2018 / Published: 19 December 2018
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Abstract
P-type wide bandgap semiconductor materials such as CuI, NiO, Cu2O and CuSCN are currently undergoing intense research as viable alternative hole transport materials (HTMs) to the spiro-OMeTAD in perovskite solar cells (PSCs). Despite 23.3% efficiency of PSCs, there are still [...] Read more.
P-type wide bandgap semiconductor materials such as CuI, NiO, Cu2O and CuSCN are currently undergoing intense research as viable alternative hole transport materials (HTMs) to the spiro-OMeTAD in perovskite solar cells (PSCs). Despite 23.3% efficiency of PSCs, there are still a number of issues in addition to the toxicology of Pb such as instability and high-cost of the current HTM that needs to be urgently addressed. To that end, copper thiocyanate (CuSCN) HTMs in addition to robustness have high stability, high hole mobility, and suitable energy levels as compared to spiro-OMeTAD HTM. CuSCN HTM layer use affordable materials, require short synthesis routes, require simple synthetic techniques such as spin-coating and doctor-blading, thus offer a viable way of developing cost-effective PSCs. HTMs play a vital role in PSCs as they can enhance the performance of a device by reducing charge recombination processes. In this review paper, we report on the current progress of CuSCN HTMs that have been reported to date in PSCs. CuSCN HTMs have shown enhanced stability when exposed to weather elements as the solar devices retained their initial efficiency by a greater percentage. The efficiency reported to date is greater than 20% and has a potential of increasing, as well as maintaining thermal stability. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Effects of the Mg/Si Ratio on Microstructure, Mechanical Properties, and Precipitation Behavior of Al–Mg–Si–1.0 wt %-Zn Alloys
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2591; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122591
Received: 10 November 2018 / Revised: 13 December 2018 / Accepted: 14 December 2018 / Published: 19 December 2018
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Abstract
Aluminum alloys are widely used as first-choice materials for lightweight automotive applications. It is important that an alloy have a balance between strength and formability. In this study, the alloys were melted, cast, hot rolled, and cold rolled into 1 mm-thick sheets. The [...] Read more.
Aluminum alloys are widely used as first-choice materials for lightweight automotive applications. It is important that an alloy have a balance between strength and formability. In this study, the alloys were melted, cast, hot rolled, and cold rolled into 1 mm-thick sheets. The microstructure, mechanical properties, and precipitation behavior of Al–Mg–Si–1.0 wt %-Zn alloys with Mg/Si ratios of 0.5, 1, and 2 after solution treatment were studied using optical and electron microscopy, a tensile test, the Vickers hardness test, and differential scanning calorimetry. The results showed that a high density and number of Al–Fe–Si particles were observed in the matrix, thus causing the formation of more homogeneous and smaller recrystallized grains after treatment with the solution. In addition, a higher volume fraction of cubeND and P-types texture components formed during solution treatment. Also, a high r value and excellent deep drawability were achieved in the medium-Mg/Si-ratio alloy. The formation of denser strengthening precipitates led to a better paint-bake hardening effect in comparison with the other two alloys. Furthermore, the precipitation kinetics were enhanced by the addition of Si, and the addition of Zn did not alter the precipitation sequence of the Al–Mg–Si alloy. The dual-phase strengthening effect was not achieved in the studied alloys during paint-bake treatment at 175 °C. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Alloy and Process Development of Light Metals)
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Open AccessArticle An Ultra-Wideband THz/IR Metamaterial Absorber Based on Doped Silicon
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2590; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122590
Received: 4 November 2018 / Revised: 14 December 2018 / Accepted: 18 December 2018 / Published: 19 December 2018
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Abstract
Metamaterial-based absorbers have been extensively investigated in the terahertz (THz) range with ever increasing performances. In this paper, we propose an all-dielectric THz absorber based on doped silicon. The unit cell consists of a silicon cross resonator with an internal cross-shaped air cavity. [...] Read more.
Metamaterial-based absorbers have been extensively investigated in the terahertz (THz) range with ever increasing performances. In this paper, we propose an all-dielectric THz absorber based on doped silicon. The unit cell consists of a silicon cross resonator with an internal cross-shaped air cavity. Numerical results suggest that the proposed absorber can operate from THz to far-infrared regimes, having an average power absorption of ∼95% between 0.6 and 10 THz. Experimental results using THz time-domain spectroscopy show a good agreement with simulations. The underlying mechanisms for broadband absorption are attributed to the combined effects of multiple cavities modes formed by silicon resonators and bulk absorption in the doped silicon substrate, as confirmed by simulated field patterns and calculated diffraction efficiency. This ultra-wideband absorption is polarization insensitive and can operate across a wide range of the incident angle. The proposed absorber can be readily integrated into silicon-based photonic platforms and used for sensing, imaging, energy harvesting and wireless communications applications in the THz/IR range. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Materials for Sources and Detectors in the GIGA-TERA-MIR Range)
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Open AccessArticle Towards Porous Silicon Oxycarbide Materials: Effects of Solvents on Microstructural Features of Poly(methylhydrosiloxane)/Divynilbenzene Aerogels
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2589; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122589
Received: 15 November 2018 / Revised: 7 December 2018 / Accepted: 14 December 2018 / Published: 19 December 2018
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Abstract
We investigate the impact of solvents on the microstructure of poly(methylhydrosiloxane)/divinylbenzene (PMHS/DVB) aerogels. The gels are obtained in highly diluted conditions via hydrosilylation reaction of PMHS bearing Si-H groups and cross-linking it with C=C groups of DVB. Polymer aerogels are obtained after solvent [...] Read more.
We investigate the impact of solvents on the microstructure of poly(methylhydrosiloxane)/divinylbenzene (PMHS/DVB) aerogels. The gels are obtained in highly diluted conditions via hydrosilylation reaction of PMHS bearing Si-H groups and cross-linking it with C=C groups of DVB. Polymer aerogels are obtained after solvent exchange with liquid CO2 and subsequent supercritical drying. Samples are characterized using microscopy and porosimetry. Common pore-formation concepts do not provide a solid rationale for the observed data. We postulate that solubility and swelling of the cross-linked polymer in various solvents are major factors governing pore formation of these PMHS/DVB polymer aerogels. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Novel Metal Carbide/Carbonitride Materials)
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Open AccessArticle PLA- and PLA/PLGA-Emulsion Composite Biomaterial Sheets for the Controllable Sustained Release of Hydrophilic Compounds
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2588; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122588
Received: 26 November 2018 / Revised: 14 December 2018 / Accepted: 17 December 2018 / Published: 19 December 2018
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Abstract
In the present study, by spin-coating a solution containing w/o (water-in-oil) emulsions and hydrophobic polymers, we obtained sheets possessing uniformly dispersed w/o emulsions. We performed release experiments for more than 100 days and clarified the effects of the number of layers, the sheet-forming [...] Read more.
In the present study, by spin-coating a solution containing w/o (water-in-oil) emulsions and hydrophobic polymers, we obtained sheets possessing uniformly dispersed w/o emulsions. We performed release experiments for more than 100 days and clarified the effects of the number of layers, the sheet-forming polymers (polylactide (PLA), poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid (PLGA)), the ratio of organic solvent to water, and the composition of block copolymers on the release properties of the sheets. For a variety of sheets, we successfully achieved the sustained release of compounds from the sheets for 100–150 days. The sustained-release of compounds occurred because the compounds had to diffuse into polymer networks after their release from the emulsions. Interestingly, we observed an inflection point in the release profiles at around 50 days; that is, the sheet exhibited a “two-step” release behavior. The results obtained in the present study provide strong evidence for the future possibility of the time-programmed release of multiple compounds from sheets. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biomaterials)
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Open AccessArticle Green Fabrication of Supported Platinum Nanoparticles by Supercritical CO2 Deposition
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2587; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122587
Received: 30 November 2018 / Revised: 14 December 2018 / Accepted: 16 December 2018 / Published: 18 December 2018
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Abstract
Pt nanoparticles were successfully deposited on uncatalyzed carbon paper by the supercritical CO2 deposition (SCD) method using platinum (II) acetylacetonate as a precursor followed by thermal conversion. A full 24 factorial design (four factors, each with two levels) was used to [...] Read more.
Pt nanoparticles were successfully deposited on uncatalyzed carbon paper by the supercritical CO2 deposition (SCD) method using platinum (II) acetylacetonate as a precursor followed by thermal conversion. A full 24 factorial design (four factors, each with two levels) was used to investigate the main effect of four factors (deposition temperature, deposition time, reduction temperature, and reduction time) and the interaction effects between them. The morphological structures and surface properties of the Pt/carbon paper composite were analyzed by X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscope (SEM)/energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy analyzer (EDS), and high-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HR-TEM). The results of the 24 factorial design showed that Pt loading on the substrate correlated significantly with deposition time, while Pt aggregation slightly increased with the thermal reduction temperature. Data obtained from both XRD and HR-TEM were in good agreement and showed that Pt nanoparticles were homogeneously dispersed on the substrate with diameters of 7.2–8.7 nm. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from IEEE ICKII 2018)
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Open AccessArticle Rapid Processing of Wafer-Scale Anti-Reflecting 3D Hierarchical Structures on Silicon and Its Templation
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2586; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122586
Received: 30 November 2018 / Revised: 11 December 2018 / Accepted: 15 December 2018 / Published: 18 December 2018
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Abstract
Hierarchically structured silicon (Si) surfaces with a combination of micro/nano-structures are highly explored for their unique surface and optical properties. In this context, we propose a rapid and facile electroless method to realize hierarchical structures on an entire Si wafer of 3″ diameter. [...] Read more.
Hierarchically structured silicon (Si) surfaces with a combination of micro/nano-structures are highly explored for their unique surface and optical properties. In this context, we propose a rapid and facile electroless method to realize hierarchical structures on an entire Si wafer of 3″ diameter. The overall process takes only 65 s to complete, unlike any conventional wet chemical approach that often combines a wet anisotropic etching of (100) Si followed by a metal nanoparticle catalyst etching. Hierarchical surface texturing on Si demonstrates a broadband highly reduced reflectance with average R% ~ 2.7% within 300–1400 nm wavelength. The as-fabricated hierarchical structured Si was also templated on a thin transparent layer of Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) that further demonstrated prospects for improved solar encapsulation with high optical clarity and low reflectance (90% and 2.8%). Full article
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Open AccessArticle Manganese Phosphatizing Coatings: The Effects of Preparation Conditions on Surface Properties
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2585; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122585
Received: 19 August 2018 / Revised: 12 December 2018 / Accepted: 13 December 2018 / Published: 18 December 2018
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Abstract
Manganese phosphate coating could be used to protect the surface of steel products. However, it is essential to determine the effects which process parameters, as well as the types of additives used, have on the efficiency of coating deposition. Thus, we present here [...] Read more.
Manganese phosphate coating could be used to protect the surface of steel products. However, it is essential to determine the effects which process parameters, as well as the types of additives used, have on the efficiency of coating deposition. Thus, we present here a process of phosphatization of low-alloy steel (for 15 min at 95 °C) in manganese/nickel baths followed by a passivation process with the use of a silicon and zircon compounds. The microstructure and morphology of the surface were analyzed by SEM EDX and XRD methods. The obtained results showed that the manganese phosphate could be effectively formed at 95 °C in the solution containing nickel and guanidine derivatives. Anodic polarization of manganese coating was investigated in 0.5 M KCl by the analysis of polarization resistance. The effects of the activation process on corrosion properties of the coating have been examined. It was observed that an increased concentration of activating substances in the activation bath results in the enhancement of corrosion resistance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Corrosion and Materials Degradation)
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Open AccessArticle Analysis and Prediction of Corrosion of Refractory Materials by Potassium during Biomass Combustion-Thermodynamic Study
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2584; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122584
Received: 9 November 2018 / Revised: 4 December 2018 / Accepted: 15 December 2018 / Published: 18 December 2018
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Abstract
As a kind of renewable resource, biomass has been used more and more widely, but the potassium contained in biomass can cause corrosion of the refractory. For a better understanding of corrosion thermodynamic mechanisms, the five components of common refractory materials (magnesium chrome [...] Read more.
As a kind of renewable resource, biomass has been used more and more widely, but the potassium contained in biomass can cause corrosion of the refractory. For a better understanding of corrosion thermodynamic mechanisms, the five components of common refractory materials (magnesium chrome spinel MgO·Cr2O3, magnesium aluminum spinel MgO·Al2O3, Al2O3, MgO, and Cr2O3) with potassium salts (K2CO3, K2SO4, and KCl) under high-temperature were studied by using the FactSageTM 7.0 software. Thermodynamic calculation results indicate that MgO is the best corrosion resistance of the five components of refractory materials. Based on the obtained results, the corrosion experiments in the laboratory were carried out (muffle furnace or high-temperature tube furnace) for corrosion reaction of KCl and MgO. The chemical compositions of the corroded samples were analyzed by X-ray diffraction (XRD). Under laboratory conditions (600–1200 °C), no corrosion products have been observed in the high-temperature corrosion experiments. The result indicates that to prevent the corrosion processes, refractories should contain as much MgO as possible. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Corrosion and Materials Degradation)
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Open AccessReview Latest Developments in Industrial Hybrid Machine Tools that Combine Additive and Subtractive Operations
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2583; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122583
Received: 13 November 2018 / Revised: 9 December 2018 / Accepted: 12 December 2018 / Published: 18 December 2018
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Abstract
Hybrid machine tools combining additive and subtractive processes have arisen as a solution to increasing manufacture requirements, boosting the potentials of both technologies, while compensating and minimizing their limitations. Nevertheless, the idea of hybrid machines is relatively new and there is a notable [...] Read more.
Hybrid machine tools combining additive and subtractive processes have arisen as a solution to increasing manufacture requirements, boosting the potentials of both technologies, while compensating and minimizing their limitations. Nevertheless, the idea of hybrid machines is relatively new and there is a notable lack of knowledge about the implications arisen from their in-practice use. Therefore, the main goal of the present paper is to fill the existing gap, giving an insight into the current advancements and pending tasks of hybrid machines both from an academic and industrial perspective. To that end, the technical-economical potentials and challenges emerging from their use are identified and critically discussed. In addition, the current situation and future perspectives of hybrid machines from the point of view of process planning, monitoring, and inspection are analyzed. On the one hand, it is found that hybrid machines enable a more efficient use of the resources available, as well as the production of previously unattainable complex parts. On the other hand, it is concluded that there are still some technological challenges derived from the interaction of additive and subtractive processes to be overcome (e.g., process planning, decision planning, use of cutting fluids, and need for a post-processing) before a full implantation of hybrid machines is fulfilled. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Investigation of the Compressibility and Compactibility of Titanate Nanotube-API Composites
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2582; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122582
Received: 28 November 2018 / Revised: 12 December 2018 / Accepted: 12 December 2018 / Published: 18 December 2018
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The present work aims to reveal the pharma-industrial benefits of the use of hydrothermally synthesised titanate nanotube (TNT) carriers in the manufacturing of nano-sized active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs). Based on this purpose, the compressibility and compactibility of various APIs (diltiazem hydrochloride, diclofenac sodium, [...] Read more.
The present work aims to reveal the pharma-industrial benefits of the use of hydrothermally synthesised titanate nanotube (TNT) carriers in the manufacturing of nano-sized active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs). Based on this purpose, the compressibility and compactibility of various APIs (diltiazem hydrochloride, diclofenac sodium, atenolol and hydrochlorothiazide) and their 1:1 composites formed with TNTs were investigated in a comparative study, using a Lloyd 6000R uniaxial press instrumented with a force gauge and a linear variable differential transformer extensometer. The tablet compression was performed without the use of any excipients, thus providing the precise energetic characterisation of the materials’ behaviour under pressure. In addition to the powder functionality test, the post-compressional properties of the tablets were also determined and evaluated. The results of the energetic analysis demonstrated that the use of TNTs as drug carriers is beneficial in every step of the tabletting process: besides providing better flowability and more favourable particle rearrangement, it highly decreases the elastic recovery of the APIs and results in ideal plastic deformation. Moreover, the post-compressional properties of the TNT–API composites were found to be exceptional (e.g., great tablet hardness and tensile strength), affirming the above results and proving the potential in the use of TNT carriers for drug manufacturing. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Experimental and FEM Studies on Secondary Co-Curing Reinforcement of Laminates
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2581; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122581
Received: 10 November 2018 / Revised: 14 December 2018 / Accepted: 14 December 2018 / Published: 18 December 2018
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In this study, a static tensile test of secondary co-cure reinforcement (SCR) of laminates revealed the damage and fracture locations in the respective structure. Test results indicated that adhesive debonding was the primary cause of structural failure. Finite element modeling (FEM) performed on [...] Read more.
In this study, a static tensile test of secondary co-cure reinforcement (SCR) of laminates revealed the damage and fracture locations in the respective structure. Test results indicated that adhesive debonding was the primary cause of structural failure. Finite element modeling (FEM) performed on the large opening laminate and strengthening structure consisted of simulations of the axial tension experiment, damage assessment, and the final load estimate. It was observed that the tensile strength of SCR was increased by 10.81% in comparison with the unrepaired structure. The results of FEM indicated that the initiation and propagation of damage, and final failure, were located in the layer of reinforcing section which was bonded to the adhesive layer, proving that the performance of the adhesive layer was the dominating factor with regard to the reinforced structure and that the thickness of the reinforcing section could be reduced to lessen the weight. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Chlorophyll Fluorescence Imaging Analysis for Elucidating the Mechanism of Photosystem II Acclimation to Cadmium Exposure in the Hyperaccumulating Plant Noccaea caerulescens
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2580; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122580
Received: 11 November 2018 / Revised: 12 December 2018 / Accepted: 13 December 2018 / Published: 18 December 2018
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Abstract
We provide new data on the mechanism of Noccaea caerulescens acclimation to Cd exposure by elucidating the process of photosystem II (PSII) acclimation by chlorophyll fluorescence imaging analysis. Seeds from the metallophyte N. caerulescens were grown in hydroponic culture for 12 weeks before [...] Read more.
We provide new data on the mechanism of Noccaea caerulescens acclimation to Cd exposure by elucidating the process of photosystem II (PSII) acclimation by chlorophyll fluorescence imaging analysis. Seeds from the metallophyte N. caerulescens were grown in hydroponic culture for 12 weeks before exposure to 40 and 120 μM Cd for 3 and 4 days. At the beginning of exposure to 40 μM Cd, we observed a spatial leaf heterogeneity of decreased PSII photochemistry, that later recovered completely. This acclimation was achieved possibly through the reduced plastoquinone (PQ) pool signaling. Exposure to 120 μM Cd under the growth light did not affect PSII photochemistry, while under high light due to a photoprotective mechanism (regulated heat dissipation for protection) that down-regulated PSII quantum yield, the quantum yield of non-regulated energy loss in PSII (ΦNO) decreased even more than control values. Thus, N. caerulescens plants exposed to 120 μM Cd for 4 days exhibited lower reactive oxygen species (ROS) production as singlet oxygen (1O2). The response of N. caerulescens to Cd exposure fits the ‘Threshold for Tolerance Model’, with a lag time of 4 d and a threshold concentration of 40 μM Cd required for the induction of the acclimation mechanism. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Role of Metal Ions in Biology, Biochemistry and Medicine)
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Open AccessReview Natural Dyes and Their Derivatives Integrated into Organic Solar Cells
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2579; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122579
Received: 26 November 2018 / Revised: 10 December 2018 / Accepted: 14 December 2018 / Published: 18 December 2018
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Abstract
Natural photosynthetic systems contain several dyes such as carotenoids or chlorophylls which are adequately arranged to produce efficient photoinduced charge separation and electron transfer. Several research groups have attempted integrating these natural dyes and photosynthetic systems into functional organic solar cells (OSCs) producing [...] Read more.
Natural photosynthetic systems contain several dyes such as carotenoids or chlorophylls which are adequately arranged to produce efficient photoinduced charge separation and electron transfer. Several research groups have attempted integrating these natural dyes and photosynthetic systems into functional organic solar cells (OSCs) producing power conversion efficiencies (PCEs) up to 0.99%. The studies presented in this short review emphasize that functionalization of natural dyes can considerably improve their PCEs. For instance, chlorophyll derivatives can yield PCEs up to 2.1%, and copolymers produced with isoindigo as an electron-deficient unit generate high PCEs up to 8%, respectively, when combined with fullerene C70 based electron acceptors in the OSC active layers. An alternative approach for natural dye integration into OSC architectures is to place these light-harvesting antennas at the interface between the active layer and the charge collection layers in these low-cost photovoltaic devices. This strategy produces large PCE increases up to 35% with respect to OSCs prepared without the interlayer. When light-harvesting systems are combined with silver nanoprisms as interlayers, additional localized surface plasmon resonance effects result in high-performance OSCs that integrate natural photosynthetic systems and demonstrate a PCE over the milestone value of 10%. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Organic and Perovskite Solar Cells)
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Open AccessArticle Mechanical Behavior of Natural Fiber-Based Bi-Directional Corrugated Lattice Sandwich Structure
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2578; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122578
Received: 15 November 2018 / Revised: 2 December 2018 / Accepted: 4 December 2018 / Published: 18 December 2018
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Abstract
In this study, 11 kinds of composite material were prepared, and the compression behavior of a bi-directional corrugated lattice sandwich structure prepared using jute fiber and epoxy resin was explored. The factors affecting the mechanical behavior of single and double-layer structures were studied [...] Read more.
In this study, 11 kinds of composite material were prepared, and the compression behavior of a bi-directional corrugated lattice sandwich structure prepared using jute fiber and epoxy resin was explored. The factors affecting the mechanical behavior of single and double-layer structures were studied separately. The results shows that the fiber angle, length-to-diameter ratio of the struts, and the type of fiber cloth have the most significant influence on the mechanical behavior of the single-layer lattice structure when preparing the core layer. When the fiber angle of the core layer jute/epoxy prepreg is (90/90) the compressive strength and Young’s modulus are 83.3% and 60.0% higher than the fiber angle of (45/45). The configuration of the core and the presence of the intermediate support plate of the double-layer structure have a large influence on the compression performance of the two-layer structure. After the configuration was optimized, the compressive strength and Young’s modulus were increased by 40.0% and 28.9%, respectively. The presence of the intermediate support plate increases the compressive strength, and Young’s modulus of the double-layer structure by 75.0% and 26.6%, respectively. The experimental failure is dominated by the buckling, fracture, and delamination of the core struts. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Gleeble-Simulated and Semi-Industrial Studies on the Microstructure Evolution of Fe-Co-Cr-Mo-W-V-C Alloy during Hot Deformation
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2577; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122577
Received: 27 November 2018 / Revised: 15 December 2018 / Accepted: 16 December 2018 / Published: 18 December 2018
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Abstract
Fe-Co-Cr-Mo-W-V-C alloy is one of the most important materials for manufacturing drills, dies, and other cutting tools owing to its excellent hardness. However, it is prone to cracking due to its poor hot ductility during continuous hot working processes. In this investigation, the [...] Read more.
Fe-Co-Cr-Mo-W-V-C alloy is one of the most important materials for manufacturing drills, dies, and other cutting tools owing to its excellent hardness. However, it is prone to cracking due to its poor hot ductility during continuous hot working processes. In this investigation, the microstructure characteristics and carbide transformations of the alloy in as-cast and wrought states are studied, respectively. Microstructural observation and first-principles calculation were conducted on the research of types and mechanical properties of carbides. The results reveal that carbides in as-cast Fe-Co-Cr-Mo-W-V-C alloy are mainly Mo2C, VC, and Cr-rich carbides (Cr7C3 and Cr23C6). The carbides in wrought Fe-Co-Cr-Mo-W-V-C alloy consist of Fe2Mo4C, VC, Cr7C3, and a small amount of retained Mo2C. For these carbides, Cr7C3 presents the maximum bulk modulus and B/G values of 316.6 GPa and 2.48, indicating Cr7C3 has the strongest ability to resist the external force and crack initiation. VC presents the maximum shear modulus and Yong’s modulus values of 187.3 GPa and 465.3 GPa, which means VC can be considered as a potential hard material. Hot isothermal compression tests were performed using a Gleeble-3500 device to simulate the flow behavior of the alloy during hot deformation. As-cast specimens were uniaxially compressed to a 70% height reduction over the temperature range of 1323–1423 K and strain rates of 0.05–1 s−1. A constitutive equation was established to characterize the relationship of peak true stress, strain rate, and deformation temperature of the alloy. The calculated results were in a good agreement with the experimental data. In order to study the texture evolution, the microstructures of the deformed specimens were observed, and an optimal deformation temperature was selected. Using the laboratorial optimal temperature (1373 K) in forging of an industrial billet resulted in uniform grains, with the largest size of 17 µm, surrounded by homogenous spherical carbides. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Rheological Behavior and Microstructure Characteristics of SCC Incorporating Metakaolin and Silica Fume
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2576; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122576
Received: 20 November 2018 / Revised: 7 December 2018 / Accepted: 10 December 2018 / Published: 18 December 2018
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Abstract
This study explores the effects of metakaolin (MK) and silica fume (SF) on rheological behaviors and microstructure of self-compacting concrete (SCC). The rheology, slump flow, V-funnel, segregation degree (SA), and compressive strength of SCC are investigated. Microstructure characteristics, including hydration product and pore [...] Read more.
This study explores the effects of metakaolin (MK) and silica fume (SF) on rheological behaviors and microstructure of self-compacting concrete (SCC). The rheology, slump flow, V-funnel, segregation degree (SA), and compressive strength of SCC are investigated. Microstructure characteristics, including hydration product and pore structure, are also studied. The results show that adding MK and SF instead of 4%, 6% and 8% fly ash (FA) reduces flowability of SCC; this is due to the fact that the specific surface area of MK and SF is larger than FA, and the total water demand increases as a result. However, the flowability increases when replacement ratio is 2%, as the small MK and SF particles will fill in the interstitial space of mixture and more free water is released. The fluidity, slump flow, and SA decrease linearly with the increase of yield stress. The total amount of SF and MK should be no more than 6% to meet the requirement of self-compacting. Adding MK or SF to SCC results in more hydration products, less Ca(OH)2 and refinement of pore structure, leading to obvious strength and durability improvements. When the total dosage of MK and SF admixture is 6%, these beneficial effects on workability, mechanical performance, and microstructure are more significant when SF and MK are applied together. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environment-Friendly Construction Materials)
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Open AccessArticle Specific Cutting Forces of Isotropic and Orthotropic Engineered Wood Products by Round Shape Machining
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2575; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122575
Received: 12 November 2018 / Revised: 5 December 2018 / Accepted: 14 December 2018 / Published: 18 December 2018
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Abstract
The set-up of machining parameters for non-ferric materials such as wood and wood-based materials is not yet defined on a scientific basis. In this paper, a new rapid experimental method to assess the specific cutting coefficients when routing isotropic and orthotropic wood-based materials [...] Read more.
The set-up of machining parameters for non-ferric materials such as wood and wood-based materials is not yet defined on a scientific basis. In this paper, a new rapid experimental method to assess the specific cutting coefficients when routing isotropic and orthotropic wood-based materials is presented. The method consists of routing, with different depths of cut, a given material previously machined to a round shape after having it fixed on a dynamometric platform able to measure the cutting forces. The execution of subsequent cuts using different depths of cut allows the calculation of the specific cutting coefficients. With the measurement being done during real routing operations, a method to remove machine vibrations was also developed. The specific cutting coefficients were computed for the whole set of grain orientations for orthotropic materials and as an average for isotropic ones. The aim of this paper is to present and validate the whole method by machining selected materials such as Polytetrafluoroethylene—PTFE (isotropic), Medium Density Fiberboard—MDF (isotropic), beech Laminate Veneer Lumber—LVL (orthotropic) and poplar LVL (orthotropic). The method and the proposed analysis have been shown to work very effectively and could be used for optimization and comparison between materials and processes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Manufacturing Processes and Systems)
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Open AccessArticle Fabrication of Silver Nanoparticles Using a Gas Phase Nanocluster Device and Preliminary Biological Uses
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2574; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122574
Received: 8 October 2018 / Revised: 1 December 2018 / Accepted: 4 December 2018 / Published: 18 December 2018
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Abstract
Nanoparticles can be used in a large variety of applications, including magnetic sensing, biological, superconductivity, tissue engineering, and other fields. In this study, we explore the fabrication of gas phase silver nanoparticles using a sputtering evaporation source. This setup composed of a dual [...] Read more.
Nanoparticles can be used in a large variety of applications, including magnetic sensing, biological, superconductivity, tissue engineering, and other fields. In this study, we explore the fabrication of gas phase silver nanoparticles using a sputtering evaporation source. This setup composed of a dual magnetron cluster source holds several advantages over other techniques. The system has independent control over the cluster concentration and a wide range of cluster size and materials that can be used for the clusters and for the matrix where it can be embedded. Characterization of these silver nanoparticles was done using transmission electron microscopy (TEM). We obtain a lateral width of 10.6 nm with a dispersion of 0.24 nm. With atomic force microscopy (AFM) a Gaussian fit of this distribution yields and average height of 6.3 nm with a standard deviation of 1.4 nm. We confirm that the deposited silver nanoparticles have a homogenous area distribution, that they have a defined shape and size distribution, and that they are single standing nanoparticles. Given that the scientific literature is not precise regarding the toxic concentration of the nanoparticles, devices such as ours can help clarify these questions. In order to explore further biological applications, we have done preliminary experiments of cell spreading (myoblast adhesion), obtaining interesting morphological changes correlated with the silver concentration on the surface. With a deposited silver concentration ranging from 100–620 ng/cm2, the cells showed morphological changes in a short time of 2 h. We conclude that this high precision nanoparticle fabrication technique is adequate for further biological research. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Enhanced Thermoelectric Properties of Ca3−xAgxCo4O9 by the Sol–Gel Method with Spontaneous Combustion and Cold Isostatic Pressing
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2573; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122573
Received: 27 November 2018 / Revised: 7 December 2018 / Accepted: 14 December 2018 / Published: 17 December 2018
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Abstract
In this study, Ca3−xAgxCo4O9 ceramics were synthesized by the sol–gel method combined with spontaneous combustion and cold isostatic pressing. The Ca3−xAgxCo4O9 ceramics were characterized via X-ray diffraction and scanning [...] Read more.
In this study, Ca3−xAgxCo4O9 ceramics were synthesized by the sol–gel method combined with spontaneous combustion and cold isostatic pressing. The Ca3−xAgxCo4O9 ceramics were characterized via X-ray diffraction and scanning electron microscopy. Thermoelectric properties of the ceramics were measured from 323 to 673 K. The results indicated that Ag doping significantly affected the microstructure and thermoelectric properties. With the increase in Ag content and gradual increase in electrical conductivity, the Seebeck coefficient first increased and then decreased, whereas the thermal conductivity exhibited the opposite case. The figure of merit, ZT, was 0.17 at 673 K for the Ca2.8Ag0.2Co4O9 sample. These results indicated that the thermoelectric properties could be optimized remarkably with the substitution of Ag. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Thermoelectric Materials)
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Open AccessArticle Characterization of Iron Core–Gold Shell Nanoparticles for Anti-Cancer Treatments: Chemical and Structural Transformations During Storage and Use
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2572; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122572
Received: 16 November 2018 / Revised: 10 December 2018 / Accepted: 12 December 2018 / Published: 17 December 2018
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Abstract
Finding a cancer-selective drug that avoids damaging healthy cells and organs is a holy grail in medical research. In our previous studies, gold-coated iron ([email protected]) nanoparticles showed cancer selective anti-cancer properties in vitro and in vivo but were found to gradually lose that [...] Read more.
Finding a cancer-selective drug that avoids damaging healthy cells and organs is a holy grail in medical research. In our previous studies, gold-coated iron ([email protected]) nanoparticles showed cancer selective anti-cancer properties in vitro and in vivo but were found to gradually lose that activity with storage or “ageing”. To determine the reasons for this diminished anti-cancer activity, we examined [email protected] nanoparticles at different preparation and storage stages by means of transmission electron microscopy combined with and energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, along with X-ray diffraction analysis and cell viability tests. We found that dried and reconstituted [email protected] nanoparticles, or [email protected] nanoparticles within cells, decompose into irregular fragments of γ-F2O3 and agglomerated gold clumps. These changes cause the loss of the particles’ anti-cancer effects. However, we identified that the anti-cancer properties of [email protected] nanoparticles can be well preserved under argon or, better still, liquid nitrogen storage for six months and at least one year, respectively. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Cancer Nanotechnology)
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Open AccessArticle Effects of Molar Ratio and pH on the Condensed Structures of Melamine-Formaldehyde Polymers
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2571; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122571
Received: 2 December 2018 / Revised: 13 December 2018 / Accepted: 14 December 2018 / Published: 17 December 2018
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Abstract
The base-catalyzed melamine-formaldehyde (MF) reactions were studied in both diluted and concentrated solutions. The influences of F/M molar ratio and pH on the polymer structures were investigated based on the quantitative 13C-NMR analysis. The results show that both F/M molar ratio and [...] Read more.
The base-catalyzed melamine-formaldehyde (MF) reactions were studied in both diluted and concentrated solutions. The influences of F/M molar ratio and pH on the polymer structures were investigated based on the quantitative 13C-NMR analysis. The results show that both F/M molar ratio and pH influence the competitive formation of ether and methylene bridges. For the cases of F/M = 2.0, and 3.0, methylene bridge formation is minor in contrast to ether bridges either at pH = 9.3–9.8 or at 7.3–7.8. When the molar ratio was lowered to 1.0, methylene bridges became competitive with ether bridges at pH = 9.3–9.8, but the latter is still more favorable. When the lower molar ratio overlaps with the lower pH, significant changes were found. The content of methlylene bridges was over three times that of ether bridges with M/F = 1.0 and at pH = 7.3–7.8. The results in this study were compared with those previously obtained for base-catalyzed urea-formaldehyde reactions. It was found that molar ratio and pH influence the structures of the MF and UF polymers in similar ways. The different synthesis conditions of UF and MF resin were also addressed by comparing the structures of UF polymers with MF polymers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Structure Analysis and Characterization)
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Open AccessArticle Light Management Enhancement for Four-Terminal Perovskite-Silicon Tandem Solar Cells: The Impact of the Optical Properties and Thickness of the Spacer Layer between Sub-Cells
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2570; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122570
Received: 10 November 2018 / Revised: 12 December 2018 / Accepted: 13 December 2018 / Published: 17 December 2018
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Abstract
Mechanical stacking of a thin film perovskite-based solar cell on top of crystalline Si (cSi) solar cell has recently attracted a lot of attention as it is considered a viable route to overcome the limitations of cSi single junction power conversion efficiency. Effective [...] Read more.
Mechanical stacking of a thin film perovskite-based solar cell on top of crystalline Si (cSi) solar cell has recently attracted a lot of attention as it is considered a viable route to overcome the limitations of cSi single junction power conversion efficiency. Effective light management is however crucial to minimize reflection or parasitic absorption losses in either the top cell or in the light in-coupling of the transmitted light to the bottom sub-cell. The study here is focused on calculating an optimum performance of a four-terminal mechanically stacked tandem structure by varying the optical property and thickness of the spacer between top and bottom sub-cells. The impact of the nature of the spacer material, with its refractive index and absorption coefficient, as well as the thickness of that layer is used as variables in the optical simulation. The optical simulation is done by using the transfer matrix-method (TMM) on a stack of a semi-transparent perovskite solar cell (top cell) mounted on top of a cSi interdigitated back contact (IBC) solar cell (bottom cell). Two types of perovskite absorber material are considered, with very similar optical properties. The total internal and external short circuit current (Jsc) losses for the semitransparent perovskite top cell as a function of the different optical spacers (material and thickness) are calculated. While selecting the optical spacer materials, Jsc for both silicon (bottom cell) and perovskite (top cell) were considered with the aim to optimize the stack for maximum overall short circuit current. From these simulations, it was found that this optimum in our four-terminal tandem occurred at a thickness of the optical spacer of 160 nm for a material with refractive index n = 1.25. At this optimum, with a combination of selected semi-transparent perovskite top cell, the simulated maximum overall short circuit current (Jsc-combined, max) equals to 34.31 mA/cm2. As a result, the four-terminal perovskite/cSi multi-junction solar cell exhibits a power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 25.26%, as the sum of the perovskite top cell PCE = 16.50% and the bottom IBC cSi cell PCE = 8.75%. This accounts for an improvement of more than 2% absolute when compared to the stand-alone IBC cSi solar cell with 23.2% efficiency. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Organic and Perovskite Solar Cells)
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Open AccessArticle Modification of a Shockley-Type Surface State on Pt(111) upon Deposition of Gold Thin Layers
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2569; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122569
Received: 26 November 2018 / Revised: 12 December 2018 / Accepted: 13 December 2018 / Published: 17 December 2018
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Abstract
We present a first-principles fully-relativistic study of surface and interface states in the n one monolayer (ML) Au/Pt(111) heterostructures. The modification of an unoccupied sp-type surface state existing on a Pt(111) surface at the surface Brillouin zone center upon deposition [...] Read more.
We present a first-principles fully-relativistic study of surface and interface states in the n one monolayer (ML) Au/Pt(111) heterostructures. The modification of an unoccupied s p -type surface state existing on a Pt(111) surface at the surface Brillouin zone center upon deposition of a few atomic Au layers is investigated. In particular, we find that the transformation process of such a surface state upon variation of the Au adlayer thickness crucially depends on the nature of the relevant quantum state in the adsorbate. When the Au adlayer consists of one or two monolayers and this relevant state has energy above the Pt(111) surface state position, the latter shifts downward upon approaching the Au adlayer. As a result, in the 1 ML Au/Pt(111) and 2 ML Au/Pt(111) heterostructures at the equilibrium adlayer position, the Pt-derived surface state experiences strong hybridization with the bulk electronic states and becomes a strong occupied resonance. In contrast, when the number n of atomic layers in the Au films increases to three or more, the Pt(111) surface state shifts upward upon reduction of the distance between the Pt(111) surface and the Au adlayer. At equilibrium, the Pt-derived surface state transforms into an unoccupied quantum-well state of the Au adlayer. This change is explained by the fact that the relevant electronic state in free-standing Au films with n 3 has lower energy in comparison to the Pt(111) surface state. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Ultrasonic Vibration Facilitates the Micro-Formability of a Zr-Based Metallic Glass
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2568; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122568
Received: 31 October 2018 / Revised: 5 December 2018 / Accepted: 12 December 2018 / Published: 17 December 2018
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Abstract
Thermoplastic microforming not only breaks through the bottleneck in the manufacture of metallic glasses, but also offers alluring prospects in microengineering applications. The microformability of metallic glasses decreases with a reduction in the mold size owing to the interfacial size effect, which seriously [...] Read more.
Thermoplastic microforming not only breaks through the bottleneck in the manufacture of metallic glasses, but also offers alluring prospects in microengineering applications. The microformability of metallic glasses decreases with a reduction in the mold size owing to the interfacial size effect, which seriously hinders their large-scale applications. Here, ultrasonic vibration was introduced as an effective method to improve the microformability of metallic glasses, owing to its capabilities of improving the material flow and reducing the interfacial friction. The results reveal that the microformability of supercooled Zr35Ti30Cu8.25Be26.75 metallic glasses is conspicuously enhanced by comparison with those under quasi-static loading. The more intriguing finding is that the microformability of the Zr-based metallic glasses can be further improved by tuning the amplitude of the ultrasonic vibration. The physical origin of the above scenario is understood, in depth, on the basis of ultrasonic vibration-assisted material flow, as demonstrated by the finite element method. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Micromanufacturing of Metallic Materials)
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Open AccessReview Polymer Electrode Materials for Sodium-ion Batteries
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2567; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122567
Received: 25 November 2018 / Revised: 11 December 2018 / Accepted: 12 December 2018 / Published: 17 December 2018
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Abstract
Sodium-ion batteries are promising alternative electrochemical energy storage devices due to the abundance of sodium resources. One of the challenges currently hindering the development of the sodium-ion battery technology is the lack of electrode materials suitable for reversibly storing/releasing sodium ions for a [...] Read more.
Sodium-ion batteries are promising alternative electrochemical energy storage devices due to the abundance of sodium resources. One of the challenges currently hindering the development of the sodium-ion battery technology is the lack of electrode materials suitable for reversibly storing/releasing sodium ions for a sufficiently long lifetime. Redox-active polymers provide opportunities for developing advanced electrode materials for sodium-ion batteries because of their structural diversity and flexibility, surface functionalities and tenability, and low cost. This review provides a short yet concise summary of recent developments in polymer electrode materials for sodium-ion batteries. Challenges facing polymer electrode materials for sodium-ion batteries are identified and analyzed. Strategies for improving polymer electrochemical performance are discussed. Future research perspectives in this important field are projected. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electrode Materials for High Performance Sodium-ion Batteries)
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