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Materials, Volume 13, Issue 22 (November-2 2020) – 252 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Infection remains a major cause for revision total joint replacement surgery, and the number of infections is rising. The treatment options still face challenges due to the lack of bone void fillers for providing both bone growth support as well as simultaneous controlled drug release at the implantation site. In the reported study, a biodegradable polymer–ceramic hybrid bone void filler was developed and endowed with a polymer controlled, antibiotic release strategy. The resulting putty-like composition not only provided antibiotic release for six weeks at therapeutic concentration but also supported bone regrowth when tested in a rat osteomyelitic model. View this paper
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Article
Mechanical and Tribological Behavior of Mechanically Alloyed Ni-TiC Composites Processed via Spark Plasma Sintering
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5306; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225306 - 23 Nov 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 732
Abstract
Titanium carbide (TiC) reinforced nickel (Ni) matrix composites were processed via mechanical alloying (MA) followed by spark plasma sintering (SPS) process. Mechanical alloying has gained special attention as a powerful non-equilibrium process for fabricating amorphous and nanocrystalline materials, whereas spark plasma sintering (SPS) [...] Read more.
Titanium carbide (TiC) reinforced nickel (Ni) matrix composites were processed via mechanical alloying (MA) followed by spark plasma sintering (SPS) process. Mechanical alloying has gained special attention as a powerful non-equilibrium process for fabricating amorphous and nanocrystalline materials, whereas spark plasma sintering (SPS) is a unique technique for processing dense and near net shape bulk alloys with homogenous microstructure. TiC reinforcement varied from 5 to 50 wt.% into nickel matrix to investigate its effect on the microstructure and mechanical behavior of Ni-TiC composites. All Ni-TiC composites powder was mechanically alloyed using planetary high energy ball mill with 400 rpm and ball to powder ratio (BPR) 15:1 for 24 h. Bulk Ni-TiC composites were then sintered via SPS process at 50 MPa pressure and 900–1200 °C temperature. All Ni-TiC composites exhibited higher microhardness and compressive strength than pure nickel due to the presence of homogeneously distributed TiC particles within the nickel matrix, matrix grain refinement, and excellent interfacial bonding between nickel and TiC reinforcement. There is an increase in Ni-TiC composites microhardness with an increase in TiC reinforcement from 5 to 50 wt.%, and it reaches the maximum value of 900 HV for Ni-50TiC composites. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Tribology: Friction and Wear of Engineering Materials)
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Article
The Removal of Platinum Group Metals, Cs, Se, and Te from Nuclear Waste Glass Using Liquid Sb Extraction and Phase Separation Methods
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5305; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225305 - 23 Nov 2020
Viewed by 531
Abstract
Recovery of platinum group metals (PGMs: Pd, Ru, Rh), Cs, Se, and Te from molten borosilicate glass containing simulated high level radwaste through the combination of liquid metal extraction and phase separation method under reductive heat-treatment was studied. In this process, the PGMs [...] Read more.
Recovery of platinum group metals (PGMs: Pd, Ru, Rh), Cs, Se, and Te from molten borosilicate glass containing simulated high level radwaste through the combination of liquid metal extraction and phase separation method under reductive heat-treatment was studied. In this process, the PGMs were extracted in recovered liquid metal phase, where Sb and Bi metals were used as the collecting metals. Meanwhile, Cs, Se, and Te were enriched in the phase separated potassium-rich materials on glass surface, which were extracted by water. The type of liquid metals had profound influence on the extraction behaviors of PGMs and other fission products from the glass melt. As a result, except the near extraction efficiency of Pd, Sb showed higher affinity for Ru and Rh than Bi metal. The higher phase separation efficiency of potassium-rich materials led to the higher extraction efficiencies of Cs, Se, and Te in liquid Sb extraction than Bi. Among the examined conditions, using liquid Sb extraction, the Pd, Ru, and Rh extraction efficiencies were 78.6%, 62.1% and 100% in liquid Sb metal phase, and 93.76% of Cs, 60.4% of Se, and 23.65% of Te in leachate were obtained. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Materials Physics)
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Article
Facile Synthesis of g-C3N4/TiO2/Hectorite Z-Scheme Composite and Its Visible Photocatalytic Degradation of Rhodamine B
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5304; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225304 - 23 Nov 2020
Viewed by 619
Abstract
A novel g-C3N4/TiO2/hectorite Z-scheme composites with oxygen vacancy (Vo) defects and Ti3+ were synthesized by so-gel method and high temperature solid phase reaction. This composite exhibited high visible photo-catalytic degradation of rhodamine B (RhB). The apparent [...] Read more.
A novel g-C3N4/TiO2/hectorite Z-scheme composites with oxygen vacancy (Vo) defects and Ti3+ were synthesized by so-gel method and high temperature solid phase reaction. This composite exhibited high visible photo-catalytic degradation of rhodamine B (RhB). The apparent rate constant of g-C3N4/TiO2/hectorite was 0.01705 min−1, which is approximately 5.38 and 4.88 times that of P25 and g-C3N4, respectively. The enhancement of photo-catalytic efficiency of the composites can be attributed to the great light harvesting ability, high specific surface area and effective separation of electrons(e) and holes(h+). The F element from Hectorite causes the formation of Vo and Ti3+ in TiO2, making it responsive to visible light. The effective separation of e and h+ mainly results from Z-scheme transfer of photo-produced electrons in g-C3N4/TiO2 interface. The composites can be easily recycled and the degradation rate of the RhB still reached 84% after five cycles, indicating its good reusability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Photocatalytic Materials for Water Treatment)
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Review
Advanced Biomaterials and Techniques for Oral Tissue Engineering and Regeneration—A Review
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5303; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225303 - 23 Nov 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1291
Abstract
The reconstruction or repair of oral and maxillofacial functionalities and aesthetics is a priority for patients affected by tooth loss, congenital defects, trauma deformities, or various dental diseases. Therefore, in dental medicine, tissue reconstruction represents a major interest in oral and maxillofacial surgery, [...] Read more.
The reconstruction or repair of oral and maxillofacial functionalities and aesthetics is a priority for patients affected by tooth loss, congenital defects, trauma deformities, or various dental diseases. Therefore, in dental medicine, tissue reconstruction represents a major interest in oral and maxillofacial surgery, periodontics, orthodontics, endodontics, and even daily clinical practice. The current clinical approaches involve a vast array of techniques ranging from the traditional use of tissue grafts to the most innovative regenerative procedures, such as tissue engineering. In recent decades, a wide range of both artificial and natural biomaterials and scaffolds, genes, stem cells isolated from the mouth area (dental follicle, deciduous teeth, periodontal ligament, dental pulp, salivary glands, and adipose tissue), and various growth factors have been tested in tissue engineering approaches in dentistry, with many being proven successful. However, to fully eliminate the problems of traditional bone and tissue reconstruction in dentistry, continuous research is needed. Based on a recent literature review, this paper creates a picture of current innovative strategies applying dental stem cells for tissue regeneration in different dental fields and maxillofacial surgery, and offers detailed information regarding the available scientific data and practical applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Materials for Oral Application)
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Review
Dynamic Mechanical Analysis Investigations of PLA-Based Renewable Materials: How Are They Useful?
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5302; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225302 - 23 Nov 2020
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 714
Abstract
Interest in renewable polymers increased exponentially in the last decade and in this context poly(lactic acid) (PLA) became the leader mainly for practical reasons. Nevertheless, it is outstanding also from a scientific point of view, because its thermal and morphological properties are offering [...] Read more.
Interest in renewable polymers increased exponentially in the last decade and in this context poly(lactic acid) (PLA) became the leader mainly for practical reasons. Nevertheless, it is outstanding also from a scientific point of view, because its thermal and morphological properties are offering challenging new insights. With regard to dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA), PLA does not have the classical behavior of a thermoplastic polymer. Often, overlapping events (enthalpic relaxation, glass transition and crystallization) that occur as the temperature increases make the DMA result of a PLA look inexplicable even for polymer scientists. This review offers a perspective of the main phenomena that can be revealed in a DMA experiment and systematizes the information that can be obtained for every region (glassy, glass transition, rubbery, cold-crystallization and melting). Also, some unusual patterns registered in some cases will be commented upon. The review intends to offer indices that one should pay attention to in the interpretation of a DMA experiment, even if the investigator has only basic skills with DMA investigations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Polymer Materials from Renewable Resources)
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Article
The Influence of Curing Regimes in Self-Healing of Nano-Modified Cement Pastes
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5301; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225301 - 23 Nov 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 514
Abstract
The present study proposes nano-calcium oxide (NC) and nano-silica (NS) particles as healing agents in cement pastes, taking into account the curing conditions. Two series of specimens were treated in water and under wetting-drying cycles. The addition of NC (1.5%wt of binder) triggered [...] Read more.
The present study proposes nano-calcium oxide (NC) and nano-silica (NS) particles as healing agents in cement pastes, taking into account the curing conditions. Two series of specimens were treated in water and under wetting-drying cycles. The addition of NC (1.5%wt of binder) triggered early healing since cracks were healed within 14 days in underwater immersion and before 28 days at wetting-drying cycles. Attenuated Total Reflectance (ATR) spectroscopy and SEM analysis revealed that the healing products were mainly aragonite and calcite in water conditions and more amorphous carbonates under wetting-drying cycles. The combination of NS and NC (3.0%wt in total) offered healing under both curing conditions before 28 days. The presence of NS assisted toward porosity refinement and NC increased the carbonates’ content. The newly formed material was dense, and its elemental analysis by SEM revealed the C-S-H compounds that were also verified by ATR. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Research and Development of Modified Building Materials)
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Article
Automatic Multi-Stage Cold Forging of an SUS304 Ball-Stud with a Hexagonal Hole at One End
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5300; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225300 - 23 Nov 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 600
Abstract
SUS304 stainless steel is characterized by combined tensile and compression testing, with an emphasis on flow stress at higher strain and temperature. The plastic deformation behavior of SUS304 from room temperature to 400 °C is examined and a general approach is used to [...] Read more.
SUS304 stainless steel is characterized by combined tensile and compression testing, with an emphasis on flow stress at higher strain and temperature. The plastic deformation behavior of SUS304 from room temperature to 400 °C is examined and a general approach is used to express flow stress as a closed-form function of strain, strain rate, and temperature; this is optimal when the strain is high, especially during automatic multi-stage cold forging. The fitted flow stress is subjected to elastothermoviscoplastic finite element analysis (FEA) of an automatic multi-stage cold forging process for an SUS304 ball-stud. The importance of the thermal effect during cold forging, in terms of high material strength and good strain-hardening, is revealed by comparing the forming load, die wear and die stress predictions of non-isothermal and isothermal FEAs. The experiments have shown that the predictions of isothermal FEA are not feasible because of the high predicted effective stress on the weakest part of the die. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metal Forming: Processes and Analyses)
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Correction
Correction: Saeed, S., et al. Enhancement of Photorefraction in Vanadium-Doped Lithium Niobate through Iron and Zirconium Co-Doping. Materials 2019, Vol. 12, 3143
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5299; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225299 - 23 Nov 2020
Viewed by 377
Abstract
The authors wish to make the following corrections to this paper [...] Full article
Article
Polarization-Selective Bidirectional Absorption Based on a Bilayer Plasmonic Metasurface
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5298; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225298 - 23 Nov 2020
Viewed by 579
Abstract
We propose an alignment-free and polarization-selective bidirectional absorber composed of a one-dimensional bilayer Au grating array buried in a silicon nitride spacer. The absorptivity of the designed structure is more than 95% (77%) under normal forward (backward) TM-polarized light incidence, and is more [...] Read more.
We propose an alignment-free and polarization-selective bidirectional absorber composed of a one-dimensional bilayer Au grating array buried in a silicon nitride spacer. The absorptivity of the designed structure is more than 95% (77%) under normal forward (backward) TM-polarized light incidence, and is more than 80% (70%) within a forward (backward) incident angle up to 30°. The great bidirectional absorption performance is illustrated by the resonance coupling of the surface plasmon polaritons (SPPs) resonance, the propagating surface plasmon (PSP) resonance and the localized surface plasmon (LSP) resonance under TM-polarized wave illumination. Moreover, the excitation of the Fano-like resonance mode of the proposed metasurface can produce two significantly different peaks in the absorption spectrum under the oblique TM-polarized incidence, which is beneficial for the plasmon-sensing application. Therefore, the proposed bidirectional metasurface absorber can be a candidate in the application of optical camouflage, thermal radiation, solar cells and optical sensing. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Materials for Optical Applications and Devices)
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Article
Preparation and Study of Sulfonated Co-Polynaphthoyleneimide Proton-Exchange Membrane for a H2/Air Fuel Cell
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5297; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225297 - 23 Nov 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 569
Abstract
The sulfonated polynaphthoyleneimide polymer (co-PNIS70/30) was prepared by copolymerization of 4,4′-diaminodiphenyl ether-2,2′-disulfonic acid (ODAS) and 4,4’-methylenebisanthranilic acid (MDAC) with ODAS/MDAC molar ratio 0.7/0.3. High molecular weight co-PNIS70/30 polymers were synthesized either in phenol or in DMSO by catalytic polyheterocyclization in the presence [...] Read more.
The sulfonated polynaphthoyleneimide polymer (co-PNIS70/30) was prepared by copolymerization of 4,4′-diaminodiphenyl ether-2,2′-disulfonic acid (ODAS) and 4,4’-methylenebisanthranilic acid (MDAC) with ODAS/MDAC molar ratio 0.7/0.3. High molecular weight co-PNIS70/30 polymers were synthesized either in phenol or in DMSO by catalytic polyheterocyclization in the presence of benzoic acid and triethylamine. The titration reveals the ion-exchange capacity of the polymer equal to 2.13 meq/g. The membrane films were prepared by casting polymer solution. Conductivities of the polymer films were determined using both in- and through-plane geometries and reached ~96 and ~60 mS/cm, respectively. The anisotropy of the conductivity is ascribed to high hydration of the surface layer compared to the bulk. SFG NMR diffusometry shows that, in the temperature range from 213 to 353 K, the 1H self-diffusion coefficient of the co-PNIS70/30 membrane is about one third of the diffusion coefficient of Nafion® at the same humidity. However, temperature dependences of proton conductivities of Nafion® and of co-PNIS70/30 membranes are nearly identical. Membrane–electrode assemblies (MEAs) based on co-PNIS70/30 were fabricated by different procedures. The optimal MEAs with co-PNIS70/30 membranes are characterized by maximum output power of ~370 mW/cm2 at 80 °C. It allows considering sulfonated co-PNIS70/30 polynaphthoyleneimides membrane attractive for practical applications. Full article
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Article
Large-Scale and Localized Laser Crystallization of Optically Thick Amorphous Silicon Films by Near-IR Femtosecond Pulses
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5296; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225296 - 23 Nov 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 622
Abstract
Amorphous silicon (α-Si) film present an inexpensive and promising material for optoelectronic and nanophotonic applications. Its basic optical and optoelectronic properties are known to be improved via phase transition from amorphous to polycrystalline phase. Infrared femtosecond laser radiation can be considered to be a promising nondestructive and facile way to drive uniform in-depth and lateral crystallization of α-Si films that are typically opaque in UV-visible spectral range. However, so far only a few studies reported on use of near-IR radiation for laser-induced crystallization of α-Si providing less information regarding optical properties of the resultant polycrystalline Si films demonstrating rather high surface roughness. The present work demonstrates efficient and gentle single-pass crystallization of α-Si films induced by their direct irradiation with near-IR femtosecond laser pulses coming at sub-MHz repetition rate. Comprehensive analysis of morphology and composition of laser-annealed films by atomic-force microscopy, optical, micro-Raman and energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, as well as numerical modeling of optical spectra, confirmed efficient crystallization of α-Si and high-quality of the obtained films. Moreover, we highlight localized laser-induced crystallization of α-Si as a promising way for optical information encryption, anti-counterfeiting and fabrication of micro-optical elements. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Insight into Design and Properties of Nanomaterials)
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Article
Improving the Mechanical Response of Al–Mg–Si 6082 Structural Alloys during High-Temperature Exposure through Dispersoid Strengthening
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5295; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225295 - 23 Nov 2020
Viewed by 411
Abstract
The feasibility and efficacy of improving the mechanical response of Al–Mg–Si 6082 structural alloys during high temperature exposure through the incorporation of a high number of α-dispersoids in the aluminum matrix were investigated. The mechanical response of the alloys was characterized based on [...] Read more.
The feasibility and efficacy of improving the mechanical response of Al–Mg–Si 6082 structural alloys during high temperature exposure through the incorporation of a high number of α-dispersoids in the aluminum matrix were investigated. The mechanical response of the alloys was characterized based on the instantaneous high-temperature and residual room-temperature strengths during and after isothermal exposure at various temperatures and durations. When exposed to 200 °C, the yield strength (YS) of the alloys was largely governed by β” precipitates. At 300 °C, β” transformed into coarse β’, thereby leading to the degradation of the instantaneous and residual YSs of the alloys. The strength improvement by the fine and dense dispersoids became evident owing to their complementary strengthening effect. At higher exposure temperatures (350–450 °C), the further improvement of the mechanical response became much more pronounced for the alloy containing fine and dense dispersoids. Its instantaneous YS was improved by 150–180% relative to the base alloy free of dispersoids, and the residual YS was raised by 140% after being exposed to 400–450 °C for 2 h. The results demonstrate that introducing thermally stable dispersoids is a cost-effective and promising approach for improving the mechanical response of aluminum structures during high temperature exposure. Full article
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Article
Finite Element Simulation and Multi-Factor Stress Prediction Model for Cement Concrete Pavement Considering Void under Slab
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5294; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225294 - 23 Nov 2020
Viewed by 420
Abstract
Uneven support as result of voids beneath concrete slabs can lead to high tensile stresses at the corner of the slab and eventually cause many forms of damage, such as cracking or faulting. Three-dimensional (3D) finite element models of the concrete pavement with [...] Read more.
Uneven support as result of voids beneath concrete slabs can lead to high tensile stresses at the corner of the slab and eventually cause many forms of damage, such as cracking or faulting. Three-dimensional (3D) finite element models of the concrete pavement with void are presented. Mesh convergence analysis was used to determine the element type and mesh size in the model. The accuracy of the model is verified by comparing with the calculation results of the code design standards in China. The reliability of the model is verified by field measurement. The analysis shows that the stresses are more affected at the corner of the slab than at the edge. Impact of void size and void depth at the slab corner on the slab stress are similar, which result in the change of the position of the maximum tensile stress. The maximum tensile stresses do not increase with the increase in the void size for relatively small void size. The maximum tensile stress increases rapidly with the enlargement in the void size when the size is ≥0.4 m. The increments of maximum tensile stress can reach 183.7% when the void size is 1.0 m. The increase in slab thickness can effectively reduce maximum tensile stress. A function is established to calculate the maximum tensile stress of the concrete slab. The function takes into account the void size, the slab thickness and the vehicle load. The reliability of the function was verified by comparing the error between the calculated and simulated results. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Construction and Building Materials)
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Article
Structural Ceramics Modified by Water Treatment Plant Sludge
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5293; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225293 - 23 Nov 2020
Viewed by 702
Abstract
Water treatment plant (WTP) sludge is actively used in building materials production. The object of this research was modifying additives for ceramic bricks from WTP aluminium-containing sludge. The research aim of this study was to determine the suitability of a million-plus population city’s [...] Read more.
Water treatment plant (WTP) sludge is actively used in building materials production. The object of this research was modifying additives for ceramic bricks from WTP aluminium-containing sludge. The research aim of this study was to determine the suitability of a million-plus population city’s WTP sludge as a burning-out additive in the production of structural ceramics and to establish the optimal conditions for obtaining products with the best characteristics. The raw water belongs to water belongs to the hydrocarbonate class, the calcium group, and it is of low turbidity (1.5–40 mg/L kaolin). Sludge, sourced from WTP sedimentation tanks, was dewatered by adding lime or by using the freezing-thawing method. The spray-dried WTP sludge is introduced into the clay in amounts of 5% to 20% by weight. The addition of 20% reduces the sensitivity of the clay to drying, reduces the density of ceramic by 20% and simultaneously increases its compressive strength from 7.0 to 10.2 MPa. The use of WTP sludge as a modifying additive, pretreated by the freezing-thawing method, makes it possible to obtain ceramic bricks with improved properties. The results can be used for WTP sludge containing aluminium obtained by treating water of medium turbidity and medium colour. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Construction and Building Materials)
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Article
Mechanical and Durability Performance Improvement of Natural Hydraulic Lime-Based Mortars by Lithium Silicate Solution
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5292; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225292 - 23 Nov 2020
Viewed by 460
Abstract
Natural hydraulic lime (NHL) as a building material has been widely used to restore the historic structure. However, the slow growth rate of strength and durability limits its engineering application. In this work, the NHL-based mortars were pretreated by lithium silicate (LS) solution [...] Read more.
Natural hydraulic lime (NHL) as a building material has been widely used to restore the historic structure. However, the slow growth rate of strength and durability limits its engineering application. In this work, the NHL-based mortars were pretreated by lithium silicate (LS) solution impregnation and surface spraying. The results show that the compressive strength, surface hardness, and freeze-thaw cycle (FTC) resistance of NHL-based mortar were greatly improved after LS pretreatment. Specifically, the compressive strengths of the sample increased by about 32.7–52.0%. LS was sprayed on the sample’s surface (about 0.2 kg/m2) and the surface hardness increased by up to 10 grades. Compared with the control samples, the weight loss of treated samples decreased by about 31.6–43.8%. A rehydration process to generate the hydrated calcium silicate gel (C-S-H) was observed between calcium hydroxide (CH) and LS, which can decrease the sample’s porosity and form a silicate coating on the surface. With an increase in the concentration of LS, the macropores (50–10,000 nm) content decreased, while the mesopores (10–50 nm) and nanopores (less than 10 nm) increased. This work reveals that the LS pretreatment provides a potential route to improve NHL-based mortar’s mechanical properties and durability. Full article
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Article
Properties and Performance of Novel Mg(OH)2-Based Coatings for Corrosion Mitigation in Concrete Sewer Pipes
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5291; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225291 - 23 Nov 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 524
Abstract
The biological activity occurring in urban sewerage systems usually leads to the (biogenic) corrosion of pipe infrastructure. Anti-corrosion coating technology was developed in an effort to protect sewer pipes from degradation. This study evaluates a new class of relatively low-cost magnesium hydroxide-based coatings, [...] Read more.
The biological activity occurring in urban sewerage systems usually leads to the (biogenic) corrosion of pipe infrastructure. Anti-corrosion coating technology was developed in an effort to protect sewer pipes from degradation. This study evaluates a new class of relatively low-cost magnesium hydroxide-based coatings, regarding their ability to adhere efficiently onto the concrete surface, and offer efficient corrosion protection. Six magnesium hydroxide-based coatings were prepared with the addition of two different types of cellulose, used as adhesion additives, and these were applied on concrete specimens. Pull-off measurements showed that the addition of higher amounts of cellulose could improve the coating adhesion onto the concrete surface. An accelerated sulfuric acid spraying test was used to evaluate the consumption time of the applied coatings and their efficiency in maintaining over time slightly alkaline pH values (above 8) on the coated/protected surfaces. At the end of spraying test, a mineralogical analysis of surface samples was performed, indicating that the formation of corrosion by-products (mainly gypsum) was increased when the added amount of cellulose was lower. Hardness and roughness measurements were also conducted on the concrete surfaces, revealing that the coatings helped the concrete surface to preserve its initial surface properties, in comparison to the uncoated specimens. A SEM/microstructure analysis showed that aggregates were formed (possibly consisting of Mg(OH)2), affecting the reactivity of the protected surface against sulfuric acid attack. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Findings of Portland Cementitious Materials)
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Article
Mechanical Properties of Different Nanopatterned TiO2 Substrates and Their Effect on Hydrothermally Synthesized Bioactive Hydroxyapatite Coatings
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5290; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225290 - 23 Nov 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 533
Abstract
Nanotechnology is a very attractive tool for tailoring the surface of an orthopedic implant to optimize its interaction with the biological environment. Nanostructured interfaces are promising, especially for orthopedic applications. They can not only improve osseointegration between the implant and the living bone [...] Read more.
Nanotechnology is a very attractive tool for tailoring the surface of an orthopedic implant to optimize its interaction with the biological environment. Nanostructured interfaces are promising, especially for orthopedic applications. They can not only improve osseointegration between the implant and the living bone but also may be used as drug delivery platforms. The nanoporous structure can be used as a drug carrier to the surrounding tissue, with the intention to accelerate tissue–implant integration as well as to reduce and treat bacterial infections occurring after implantation. Titanium oxide nanotubes are promising for such applications; however, their brittle nature could be a significantly limiting factor. In this work, we modified the topography of commercially used titanium foil by the anodization process and hydrothermal treatment. As a result, we obtained a crystalline nanoporous u-shaped structure (US) of anodized titanium oxide with improved resistance to scratch compared to TiO2 nanotubes. The US titanium substrate was successfully modified with hydroxyapatite coating and investigated for bioactivity. Results showed high bioactivity in simulated body fluid (SBF) after two weeks of incubation. Full article
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Article
Experiments and Numerical Simulations of the Annealing Temperature Influence on the Residual Stresses Level in S700MC Steel Welded Elements
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5289; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225289 - 22 Nov 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 568
Abstract
The article presents the results of research on the influence of temperature and time changes of the annealing process on the values and distribution of stresses in the simulated heat-affected zone of S700MC steel welded joints. For this purpose, tests were carried out [...] Read more.
The article presents the results of research on the influence of temperature and time changes of the annealing process on the values and distribution of stresses in the simulated heat-affected zone of S700MC steel welded joints. For this purpose, tests were carried out on a thermal cycle simulator, as well as heating the prepared samples in accordance with the recorded welding thermal cycles, and then annealing at temperatures from 200 to 550 °C. The stresses values in the tested samples before and after the annealing process were measured by using X-ray diffraction (XRD). The performed tests were verified with the results of numerical analyses using the finite element method (FEM) performed in the VisualWeld (SYSWELD) environment as, on the one hand, the verification of the obtained results, and, on the other hand, the source of data for the development of a methodology for conducting analyses of heat treatment processes of S700MC steel welded structures. Also presented are three examples of numerical analyses for Gas Metal Arc (GMAW), laser and hybrid welding and then the annealing process of the obtained joints at selected temperatures. The main purpose of the work was to broaden the knowledge on the influence of annealing parameters on the values and distribution of stresses in welded joints, but also to signal the possibility of using modern software in engineering practice. Full article
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Article
Evaluation of Preosteoblast MC3T3-E1 Cells Cultured on a Microporous Titanium Membrane Fabricated Using a Precise Mechanical Punching Process
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5288; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225288 - 22 Nov 2020
Viewed by 557
Abstract
The surface topography of Titanium (Ti) combined toughness and biocompatibility affects the attachment and migration of cells. Limited information of morphological characteristics, formed by precise machining in micron order, is currently available on the Ti that could promote osteoconduction. In the present study, [...] Read more.
The surface topography of Titanium (Ti) combined toughness and biocompatibility affects the attachment and migration of cells. Limited information of morphological characteristics, formed by precise machining in micron order, is currently available on the Ti that could promote osteoconduction. In the present study, a pure Ti membrane was pierced with precise 25 μm square holes at 75 μm intervals and appear burrs at the edge of aperture. We defined the surface without burrs as the “Head side” and that with burrs as the “Tail side”. The effects of the machining microtopography on the proliferation and differentiation of the preosteoblasts (MC3T3-E1 cells) were investigated. The cells were more likely to migrate to, and accumulate in, the aperture of holes on the head side, but grew uniformly regardless of holes on the tail side. The topography on the both surfaces increased osteopontin gene expression levels. Osteocalcin expression levels were higher on the head side than one on the blank scaffold and tail side (p < 0.05). The osteocalcin protein expression levels were higher on the tail side than on the head side after 21 days of cultivation, and were comparable to the proportion of the calcified area (p < 0.05). These results demonstrate the capacity of a novel microporous Ti membrane fabricated using a precise mechanical punching process to promote cell proliferation and activity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dental Materials and Devices)
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Article
Novel Aggregation-Induced Emission Materials/Cadmium Sulfide Composite Photocatalyst for Efficient Hydrogen Evolution in Absence of Sacrificial Reagent
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5287; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225287 - 22 Nov 2020
Viewed by 530
Abstract
This work focuses on the development of a novel organic–inorganic photoactive material composited by aggregation-induced emission luminogens (AIE) and CdS. Tetraphenylethene-based AIE (TPE-Ca) is synthesized on CdS to form CdS/TPE-Ca electrode, due to its suitable band structure and potential capability of renewable energy [...] Read more.
This work focuses on the development of a novel organic–inorganic photoactive material composited by aggregation-induced emission luminogens (AIE) and CdS. Tetraphenylethene-based AIE (TPE-Ca) is synthesized on CdS to form CdS/TPE-Ca electrode, due to its suitable band structure and potential capability of renewable energy production. The CdS/TPE-Ca electrode presents over three-fold improved photocurrent density and dramatically reduced interfacial resistance, compared with the pure CdS electrode. In addition, the engineering of the band alignment allows the holes to accumulate on the valance band of TPE-Ca, which would partially prevent the CdS from photo-corrosion, thus improving the stability of the sacrificial-free electrolyte photoelectrochemical cell. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Photonic Materials and Devices)
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Article
Immittance Studies of Bi6Fe2Ti3O18 Ceramics
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5286; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225286 - 22 Nov 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 435
Abstract
Results of studies focusing on the electric behavior of Bi6Fe2Ti3O18 (BFTO) ceramics are reported. BFTO ceramics were fabricated by solid state reaction methods. The simple oxides Bi2O3, TiO2, and Fe [...] Read more.
Results of studies focusing on the electric behavior of Bi6Fe2Ti3O18 (BFTO) ceramics are reported. BFTO ceramics were fabricated by solid state reaction methods. The simple oxides Bi2O3, TiO2, and Fe2O3 were used as starting materials. Immittance spectroscopy was chosen as a method to characterize electric and dielectric properties of polycrystalline ceramics. The experimental data were measured in the frequency range Δν = (10−1–107) Hz and the temperature range ΔT = (−120–200) °C. Analysis of immittance data was performed in terms of complex impedance, electric modulus function, and conductivity. The activation energy corresponding to a non-Debye type of relaxation was found to be EA = 0.573 eV, whereas the activation energy of conductivity relaxation frequency was found to be EA = 0.570 eV. An assumption of a hopping conductivity mechanism for BFTO ceramics was studied by ‘universal’ Jonscher’s law. A value of the exponents was found to be within the “Jonscher’s range” (0.54 ≤ n ≤ 0.72). The dc-conductivity was extracted from the measurements. Activation energy for dc-conductivity was calculated to be EDC = 0.78 eV, whereas the dc hopping activation energy was found to be EH = 0.63 eV. The obtained results were discussed in terms of the jump relaxation model. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electroceramic Materials)
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Article
Hybrid Approaches for Selective Laser Sintering by Building on Dissimilar Materials
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5285; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225285 - 22 Nov 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 493
Abstract
We introduced a new approach in selective laser sintering for hybrid multicomponent systems by fabricating the sintered polyamide 12 (PA12) part directly onto a similar (PA12) or dissimilar (polyamide 6 (PA6) and tool steel 1.2709) joining partner. Thus, the need for adhesive substances [...] Read more.
We introduced a new approach in selective laser sintering for hybrid multicomponent systems by fabricating the sintered polyamide 12 (PA12) part directly onto a similar (PA12) or dissimilar (polyamide 6 (PA6) and tool steel 1.2709) joining partner. Thus, the need for adhesive substances or joining pressure was completely circumvented, leading to the possibility of pure hybrid lightweight bi-polymer or metal–polymer systems. By taking advantage of the heating capabilities of the sinter laser regarding the substrate surface, different exposure strategies circumvented the lack of overlapping melting temperatures of dissimilar polymers. Therefore, even sintering on non-PA12 polymers was made possible. Finally, the transfer on metallic substrates—made up by selective laser melting (SLM)—was successfully performed, closing the gap between two powder-based additive processes, selective laser sintering (SLS) and SLM. Full article
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Article
Effect of Elevated Deformation Temperatures on Microstructural and Tensile Behavior of Si-Al Alloyed TRIP-Aided Steel
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5284; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225284 - 22 Nov 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 438
Abstract
The influence of elevated deformation temperatures on the relationships between the microstructure and mechanical properties in a hot-rolled Si-Al-alloyed transformation-induced plasticity (TRIP)-aided steel was studied in a static tensile test. The morphological features of specimens deformed at the different temperatures were characterized by [...] Read more.
The influence of elevated deformation temperatures on the relationships between the microstructure and mechanical properties in a hot-rolled Si-Al-alloyed transformation-induced plasticity (TRIP)-aided steel was studied in a static tensile test. The morphological features of specimens deformed at the different temperatures were characterized by different microstructural techniques: optical microscopy (OM), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), X-ray diffraction (XRD), and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). An increase in the deformation temperature from 20 to 200 °C resulted in the reduced effectiveness of the TRIP effect, due to the increasing mechanical stability of the γ phase. The gradual transformation of retained austenite into martensite expressed by a progressive increase in the work hardening exponent (n) led to a beneficial balance of strength, uniform elongation and total elongation. The best product of UTS × TEl = 17,805 MPa% showed the sample deformed at 20 °C with a peak n value amounting to 0.3. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Effects of Temperature and Strain Rate on Steel Strengthening)
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Article
Recycling of Spent Pot Lining First Cut from Aluminum Smelters by Utilizing the Two-Step Decomposition Characteristics of Dolomite
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5283; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225283 - 22 Nov 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 527
Abstract
Spent Pot Lining First Cut (shortened to SPL-1cut) is a solid waste discharged from a primary aluminum electrolytic production process. SPL-1cut is classified as hazardous waste in China because it contains large amounts of soluble sodium fluoride and a tiny amount of cyanide. [...] Read more.
Spent Pot Lining First Cut (shortened to SPL-1cut) is a solid waste discharged from a primary aluminum electrolytic production process. SPL-1cut is classified as hazardous waste in China because it contains large amounts of soluble sodium fluoride and a tiny amount of cyanide. Most of SPL-1cut is carbon—about 65%—and its calorific value is 22.587 MJ∙kg−1. There is a high level of sodium fluoride in SPL-1cut—about 15%—and sodium fluoride is randomly distributed in the carbon granule. The recycling of SPL-1cut using dolomite as a reactant, based on the characteristics of the two-step decomposition of dolomite at a high temperature, is discussed. The recycling of SPL-1cut was performed under the following heating conditions: the heating temperature was 850 °C, the holding time was 120 min, and 40% of the dolomite was added to the SPL-1cut. It was found that the cyanides are completely oxidized and decomposed, and dolomite is decomposed into MgO and active CaCO3. At the same time, NaF reacts with active CaCO3 and converts into CaF2. The results provide references for using SPL-1cut as an alternative fuel in the dolomite calcination process of the Pidgeon Process. Full article
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Article
Low-Power pH Sensor Based on Narrow Channel Open-Gated Al0.25Ga0.75N/GaN HEMT and Package Integrated Polydimethylsiloxane Microchannels
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5282; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225282 - 22 Nov 2020
Viewed by 566
Abstract
pH sensors with low-power and strong anti-interference are extremely important for industrial online real-time detection. Herein, a narrow channel pH sensor based on Al0.25Ga0.75N/GaN high electron mobility transistor (HEMT) with package integrated Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) microchannels is proposed. The fabricated [...] Read more.
pH sensors with low-power and strong anti-interference are extremely important for industrial online real-time detection. Herein, a narrow channel pH sensor based on Al0.25Ga0.75N/GaN high electron mobility transistor (HEMT) with package integrated Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) microchannels is proposed. The fabricated device has shown potential advantages in improving stability and reducing power consumption in response to pH changes of the solution. The performance of the pH sensor was demonstrated where the preliminary results showed an ultra-low power (<5.0 μW) at VDS = 1.0 V. Meanwhile, the sensitivity was 0.06 μA/V·pH in the range of pH = 2 to pH = 10, and the resolution of the sensor was 0.1 pH. The improvement in performance of the proposed sensor can be related to the narrow channel and microchannel, which can be attributed to better surface GaxOy in a microchannel with larger H+ and HO concentration on the sensing surface during the detection process. The low-power sensor with excellent stability can be widely used in various unattended or harsh environments, and it is more conducive to integration and intelligence, which lays the foundation for online monitoring in vivo. Full article
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Article
Assessment of the Piezoelectric Response of an Epoxy Resin/SbSINanowires Composite Filling FDM Printed Grid
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5281; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225281 - 22 Nov 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 562
Abstract
This paper shows a piezoelectric response from an innovative sensor obtained by casting epoxy-SbSI (antimony sulfoiodide) nanowires nanocomposite to a grid structure printed using a fuse deposition modeling (FDM) method. The grid is shown to be a support structure for the nanocomposite. The [...] Read more.
This paper shows a piezoelectric response from an innovative sensor obtained by casting epoxy-SbSI (antimony sulfoiodide) nanowires nanocomposite to a grid structure printed using a fuse deposition modeling (FDM) method. The grid is shown to be a support structure for the nanocomposite. The applied design approach prospectively enables the formation of sensors with a wide spectrum of shapes and a wide applicability. The voltage signal obtained as a result of the piezoelectric effect reached 1.5V and 0.5V under a maximum static stress of 8.5 MPa and under a maximum dynamic stress of 22.3 kPa, respectively. These values are sufficient for potential application in sensor systems. The effect of a systematic increase in the voltage signal with subsequent cycles was also observed, which similarly allows the use of these sensors in monitoring systems for structures exposed to unfavorable cyclical loads. The obtained results also show that the piezoelectric signal improves with increase in strain rate. Full article
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Article
Anatase Forming Treatment without Surface Morphological Alteration of Dental Implant
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5280; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225280 - 22 Nov 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 599
Abstract
The osseointegration of titanium implants is allowed by the TiO2 layer that covers the implants. Titania can exist in amorphous form or in three different crystalline conformations: anatase, rutile and brookite. Few studies have characterized TiO2 covering the surface of dental [...] Read more.
The osseointegration of titanium implants is allowed by the TiO2 layer that covers the implants. Titania can exist in amorphous form or in three different crystalline conformations: anatase, rutile and brookite. Few studies have characterized TiO2 covering the surface of dental implants from the crystalline point of view. The aim of the present study was to characterize the evolution of the TiO2 layer following different surface treatments from a crystallographic point of view. Commercially pure titanium and Ti-6Al-4V implants subjected to different surface treatments were analyzed by Raman spectroscopy to evaluate the crystalline conformation of titania. The surface treatments evaluated were: machining, sandblasting, sandblasting and etching and sandblasting, etching and anodization. The anodizing treatment evaluated in this study allowed to obtain anatase on commercially pure titanium implants without altering the morphological characteristics of the surface. Full article
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Article
Challenges in a Hybrid Fabrication Process to Generate Metallic Polarization Elements with Sub-Wavelength Dimensions
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5279; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225279 - 22 Nov 2020
Viewed by 556
Abstract
We report on the challenges in a hybrid sub-micrometer fabrication process while using three dimensional femtosecond direct laser writing and electroplating. With this hybrid subtractive and additive fabrication process, it is possible to generate metallic polarization elements with sub-wavelength dimensions of less than [...] Read more.
We report on the challenges in a hybrid sub-micrometer fabrication process while using three dimensional femtosecond direct laser writing and electroplating. With this hybrid subtractive and additive fabrication process, it is possible to generate metallic polarization elements with sub-wavelength dimensions of less than 400 nm in the cladding area. We show approaches for improving the adhesion of freestanding photoresist pillars as well as of the metallic cladding area, and we also demonstrate the avoidance of an inhibition layer and sticking of the freestanding pillars. Three-dimensional direct laser writing in a positive tone photoresist is used as a subtractive process to fabricate free-standing non-metallic photoresist pillars with an area of about 850 nm × 1400 nm, a height of 3000 nm, and a distance between the pillars of less than 400 nm. In a subsequent additive fabrication process, these channels are filled with gold by electrochemical deposition up to a final height of 2200 nm. Finally, the polarization elements are characterized by measuring the degree of polarization in order to show their behavior as quarter- and half-wave plates. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Photonic Materials and Devices)
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Article
Experimental Investigation and Optimization of the Semisolid Multicavity Squeeze Casting Process for Wrought Aluminum Alloy Scroll
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5278; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225278 - 21 Nov 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 670
Abstract
Scroll compressors are popularly applied in air-conditioning systems. The conventional fabrication process causes gas and shrinkage porosity in the scroll. In this paper, the electromagnetic stirring (EMS)-based semisolid multicavity squeeze casting (SMSC) process is proposed for effectively manufacturing wrought aluminum alloy scrolls. Insulation [...] Read more.
Scroll compressors are popularly applied in air-conditioning systems. The conventional fabrication process causes gas and shrinkage porosity in the scroll. In this paper, the electromagnetic stirring (EMS)-based semisolid multicavity squeeze casting (SMSC) process is proposed for effectively manufacturing wrought aluminum alloy scrolls. Insulation temperature, squeeze pressure, and the treatment of the micromorphology and mechanical properties of the scroll were investigated experimentally. It was found that reducing the insulation temperature can decrease the grain size, increase the shape factor, and improve mechanical properties. The minimum grain size was found as 111 ± 3 μm at the insulation temperature of 595 °C. The maximum tensile strength, yield strength, and hardness were observed as 386 ± 8 MPa, 228 ± 5 MPa, and 117 ± 5 HV, respectively, at the squeeze pressure of 100 MPa. The tensile strength and hardness of the scroll could be improved, and the elongation was reduced by the T6 heat treatment. The optimal process parameters are recommended at an insulation temperature in the range of 595–600 °C and a squeeze pressure of 100 MPa. Under the optimal process parameters, scroll casting was completely filled, and there was no obvious shrinkage defect observed inside. Its microstructure is composed of fine and spherical grains. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances and Trends in Metal Forming)
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Article
A Self-Healing Hierarchical Fiber Hydrogel That Mimics ECM Structure
Materials 2020, 13(22), 5277; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13225277 - 21 Nov 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 694
Abstract
Although there have been many studies on using hydrogels as substitutes for natural extracellular matrices (ECMs), hydrogels that mimic the structure and properties of ECM remain a contentious topic in current research. Herein, a hierarchical biomimetic fiber hydrogel was prepared using a simple [...] Read more.
Although there have been many studies on using hydrogels as substitutes for natural extracellular matrices (ECMs), hydrogels that mimic the structure and properties of ECM remain a contentious topic in current research. Herein, a hierarchical biomimetic fiber hydrogel was prepared using a simple strategy, with a structure highly similar to that of the ECM. Cell viability experiments showed that the hydrogel not only has good biocompatibility but also promotes cell proliferation and growth. It was also observed that cells adhere to the fibers in the hydrogel, mimicking the state of cells in the ECM. Lastly, through a rat skin wound repair experiment, we demonstrated that this hydrogel has a good effect on promoting rat skin healing. Its high structural similarity to the ECM and good biocompatibility make this hydrogel a good candidate for prospective applications in the field of tissue engineering. Full article
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