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Polymers, Volume 15, Issue 15 (August-1 2023) – 179 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Chemical mechanical planarization (CMP) is a wafer-surface-polishing planarization technique based on a wet procedure that combines chemical and mechanical forces to fully flatten materials on a wafer surface. Achieving few defects and good wafer yields is essential for IC chip manufacturers. We systematically studied polymer-type nanoparticles the applied in CMP in terms of the size, shape, solid content, and different types of copolymer nanoparticle, and compared traditional inorganic and polymer nanoparticles in terms of polishing performance. View this pager
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35 pages, 20432 KiB  
Article
Leucine-Based Pseudo-Proteins (LPPs) as Promising Biomaterials: A Study of Cell-Supporting Properties
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3328; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153328 - 07 Aug 2023
Viewed by 976
Abstract
Scaffold-based systems have become essential in biomedical research, providing the possibility of building in vitro models that can better mimic tissue/organic physiology. A relatively new family of biomimetics—pseudo-proteins (PPs)—can therefore be considered especially promising in this context. Three different artificial leucine-based LPP films [...] Read more.
Scaffold-based systems have become essential in biomedical research, providing the possibility of building in vitro models that can better mimic tissue/organic physiology. A relatively new family of biomimetics—pseudo-proteins (PPs)—can therefore be considered especially promising in this context. Three different artificial leucine-based LPP films were tested in vitro as potential scaffolding materials. In vitro experiments were performed using two types of cells: primary mouse skin fibroblasts and a murine monocyte/macrophages cell line, RAW264.7. Cell adhesion and cell spreading were evaluated according to morphological parameters via scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and they were assessed according to actin cytoskeleton distribution, which was studied via confocal laser microscopy. Cell proliferation was evaluated via an MTT assay. Cell migration was studied using time-lapse microscopy. SEM images for both types of cells demonstrated prominent adhesion and perfect cell spreading on all three LPPs. Analyses of actin cytoskeleton organization revealed a high number of focal adhesions and prominent motility-associated structures. A certain stimulation of cell proliferation was detected in the cases of all three LPPs, and two of them promoted macrophage migration. Overall, our data suggest that the LPPs used in the study can be considered potential cell-friendly scaffolding materials. Full article
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19 pages, 27800 KiB  
Article
Shear Performance of Epoxy Joints in a Precast Bridge Deck Considering Constraint Effects
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3327; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153327 - 07 Aug 2023
Viewed by 631
Abstract
The joint form plays a vital role in the rapid assembly of precast bridge decks for steel–concrete composite bridges. Existing research primarily focuses on studying the shear performance of joints through direct shear tests, which is insufficient to fully reflect the mechanical behavior [...] Read more.
The joint form plays a vital role in the rapid assembly of precast bridge decks for steel–concrete composite bridges. Existing research primarily focuses on studying the shear performance of joints through direct shear tests, which is insufficient to fully reflect the mechanical behavior of joints under the constraint of prefabricated bridge deck panels during actual vehicular traffic. Considering situations such as vehicle loads and external forces acting on precast bridge decks, this study investigates the shear performance of epoxy joints under constraint through an improved shear test. The influence of constraint force, shear key details and interface defects on the shear performance of epoxy joints is investigated. The results reveal that the shear test method employed in this study can realistically reflect the shear performance of epoxy joints in precast bridge decks. Both active and passive constrained epoxy joint specimens exhibited no interface cracks, and their failure modes were identified as shear failure between mid-span supports. Compared with passive constraint, the shear-bearing capacity of epoxy joint specimens under active constraint was increased by 86.1~130.6%. Among the epoxy joint specimens with depth–height ratios of 15/110, 25/110, 35/110 and 45/110, the joint with a depth of 35 mm demonstrated the highest shear strength. Furthermore, the shear performance of epoxy joints significantly deteriorated when the interface defects exceeded 30%, resulting in the failure mode transforming from shear failure to interface failure. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Polymer Applications)
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20 pages, 3512 KiB  
Review
Interpolymer Complexes Based on Cellulose Ethers: Application
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3326; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153326 - 07 Aug 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1094
Abstract
Interpolymer complexes based on cellulose ethers have gained significant interest in recent years due to their versatile applications. These complexes are formed by combining different polymers through non-covalent interactions, resulting in stable structures. This article provides an overview of the various fields where [...] Read more.
Interpolymer complexes based on cellulose ethers have gained significant interest in recent years due to their versatile applications. These complexes are formed by combining different polymers through non-covalent interactions, resulting in stable structures. This article provides an overview of the various fields where IPCs based on cellulose ethers find application. IPCs based on cellulose ethers show great potential in drug delivery systems. These complexes can encapsulate drugs and enable controlled release, making them suitable for sustained drug delivery. They offer advantages in terms of precise dosage and enhanced therapeutic efficacy. Coatings and adhesives also benefit from IPCs based on cellulose ethers. These complexes can form films with excellent mechanical strength and enhanced water resistance, providing durability and protection. They have applications in various industries where coatings and adhesives play a crucial role. In food packaging, IPCs based on cellulose ethers are highly relevant. These complexes can form films with effective barrier properties against oxygen and water vapor, making them ideal for packaging perishable foods. They help extend to shelf life of food products by minimizing moisture and oxygen transfer. Various methods, such as solvent casting, coacervation, and electrostatic complexation, are employed to synthesize IPCs based on cellulose ethers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Polymer Applications)
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13 pages, 3994 KiB  
Article
Synthesis, Characterization, and Potential Application of Cyclodextrin-Based Polyrotaxanes for Reinforced Atelocollagen Threads
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3325; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153325 - 07 Aug 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 892
Abstract
Preparing strong and flexible atelocollagen-based materials for biomedical applications is still a challenging task. To address this challenge, this study describes the synthesis and characterization of water-soluble polyrotaxanes (PRs) with different coverage ratios and molecular weights of axle polymers, and their potential applications [...] Read more.
Preparing strong and flexible atelocollagen-based materials for biomedical applications is still a challenging task. To address this challenge, this study describes the synthesis and characterization of water-soluble polyrotaxanes (PRs) with different coverage ratios and molecular weights of axle polymers, and their potential applications for PR-reinforced atelocollagen threads (PRATs). A novel method was established for the syntheses of PRs with relatively low coverage ratio at the sub-gram scale, in which the aldehyde groups were employed as crosslinking sites for preparing the PRATs via reductive amination. The aldehyde groups were successfully quantified by 1H nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy using 1,1-dimethylhydrazine as an aldehyde marker. Fourier-transform infrared and thermogravimetric analysis measurements supported the characterization of the PRs. Interestingly, tensile testing demonstrated that coverage ratio affected the mechanical properties of the PRATs more strongly than molecular weight. The insights obtained in this study would facilitate the development of soft materials based on atelocollagens and PRs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Polymers Synthesis and Characterization II)
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14 pages, 5021 KiB  
Article
Recycling of Nanocellulose from Polyester–Cotton Textile Waste for Modification of Film Composites
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3324; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153324 - 07 Aug 2023
Viewed by 1403
Abstract
Textile waste has emerged as a critical global challenge, with improper disposal practices leading to adverse environmental consequences. In response to this pressing issue, there is growing interest in recycling textile waste containing cellulose as an alternative approach to reducing the impact of [...] Read more.
Textile waste has emerged as a critical global challenge, with improper disposal practices leading to adverse environmental consequences. In response to this pressing issue, there is growing interest in recycling textile waste containing cellulose as an alternative approach to reducing the impact of industrial waste on the environment. The objective of this research is to investigate the extraction and characterization of nanocellulose from polyester–cotton textile waste as a potential solution to address the growing concerns of waste management in the textile industry. To obtain nanocellulose, a comprehensive process involving alkaline sodium hydroxide (NaOH) treatment of the polyester–cotton textile (35% PET and 65% cotton) was employed, resulting in average yield percentages ranging from 62.14% to 71.21%. To achieve the complete hydrolysis of PET polyester in the blends, second hydrolysis was employed, and the optimized condition yield cotton fiber was 65.06 wt%, relatively close to the theoretical yield. Subsequently, the obtained cellulosic material underwent an acid hydrolysis process using 70 percent (v/v) sulfuric acid (H2SO4) solution at 45 °C for 90 min, resulting in nanocellulose. Centrifugation at 15,000 rpm for 15 min facilitated the separation of nanocellulose from the acid solution and yielded 56.26 wt% at optimized conditions. The characterization of the nanocellulose was carried out utilizing a comprehensive array of techniques, including absorption, transmission, and reflection spectra, and Fourier transform infrared. The characterization results provide valuable insights into the unique properties of nanocellulose extracted from textile waste. In this research, the obtained nanocellulose was mixed with PVA and silver nanoparticle to form biodegradable film composites as the reinforcement. In comparison, biodegradable film of PVA:nanocellulose 9.5:0.5 with silver nanoparticle 0.3 wt% and glycerol as a plasticizer exhibits better tensile strength (2.37 MPa) and elongation (214.26%) than the PVA film with normal cellulose. The prepared biodegradable film was homogeneous and had a smooth surface without the internal defect confirmed by the CT scan. This result opens avenues for enhancing the quantities of eco-friendly film composites, potentially replacing conventional plastic films in the future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Polymer Fibers)
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15 pages, 5441 KiB  
Article
Properties of Resorbable Conduits Based on Poly(L-Lactide) Nanofibers and Chitosan Fibers for Peripheral Nerve Regeneration
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3323; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153323 - 07 Aug 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 780
Abstract
New tubular conduits have been developed for the regeneration of peripheral nerves and the repair of defects that are larger than 3 cm. The conduits consist of a combination of poly(L-lactide) nanofibers and chitosan composite fibers with chitin nanofibrils. In vitro studies were [...] Read more.
New tubular conduits have been developed for the regeneration of peripheral nerves and the repair of defects that are larger than 3 cm. The conduits consist of a combination of poly(L-lactide) nanofibers and chitosan composite fibers with chitin nanofibrils. In vitro studies were conducted to assess the biocompatibility of the conduits using human embryonic bone marrow stromal cells (FetMSCs). The studies revealed good adhesion and differentiation of the cells on the conduits just one day after cultivation. Furthermore, an in vivo study was carried out to evaluate motor-coordination disorders using the sciatic nerve functional index (SFI) assessment. The presence of chitosan monofibers and chitosan composite fibers with chitin nanofibrils in the conduit design increased the regeneration rate of the sciatic nerve, with an SFI value ranging from 76 to 83. The degree of recovery of nerve conduction was measured by the amplitude of M-response, which showed a 46% improvement. The conduit design imitates the oriented architecture of the nerve, facilitates electrical communication between the damaged nerve’s ends, and promotes the direction of nerve growth, thereby increasing the regeneration rate. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biopolymer-Based Biomimetic Scaffolds)
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14 pages, 2985 KiB  
Article
Predicting High-Density Polyethylene Melt Rheology Using a Multimode Tube Model Derived Using Non-Equilibrium Thermodynamics
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3322; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153322 - 07 Aug 2023
Viewed by 770
Abstract
Based on the Generalized bracket, or Beris–Edwards, formalism of non-equilibrium thermodynamics, we recently proposed a new differential constitutive model for the rheological study of entangled polymer melts and solutions. It amended the shortcomings of a previous model that was too strict regarding the [...] Read more.
Based on the Generalized bracket, or Beris–Edwards, formalism of non-equilibrium thermodynamics, we recently proposed a new differential constitutive model for the rheological study of entangled polymer melts and solutions. It amended the shortcomings of a previous model that was too strict regarding the values of the convective constraint release parameter for the model not to violate the second law of thermodynamics, and it has been shown capable of predicting a transient stress undershoot (following the overshoot) at high shear rates. In this study, we wish to further examine this model’s capability to predict the rheological response of industrial polymer systems by extending it to its multiple-mode version. The comparison with industrial rheological data (High-Density Polyethylene resins), which was based on comparison with experimental data available in (a) Small Amplitude Oscillatory shear, (b) start-up shear, and (c) start-up uniaxial elongation, was noted to be good. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Rheological Properties of Polymers and Polymer Composites)
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13 pages, 1778 KiB  
Article
Behaviour of the Peri-Implant Soft Tissue with Different Rehabilitation Materials on Implants
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3321; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153321 - 07 Aug 2023
Viewed by 890
Abstract
(1) Background: Mucointegration seems to gain interest when talking about success in the maintenance of dental implants. As we well know, collagen fibres cannot be inserted due to the lack of root structure on the implant surface, so the structural integration of peri-implant [...] Read more.
(1) Background: Mucointegration seems to gain interest when talking about success in the maintenance of dental implants. As we well know, collagen fibres cannot be inserted due to the lack of root structure on the implant surface, so the structural integration of peri-implant tissues that provide a firm seal around implants seems to be of interest when it comes to ensuring the survival of dental implants. To achieve a good epithelial barrier, the physicochemical characteristics of the surfaces of the restorative materials are of vital importance; therefore, the objective of this study is to analyse the histological behaviour of the peri-implant soft tissues in three different restorative materials. (2) Methods: Histological analysis of biopsied peri-implant keratinised mucosa, inflammatory epithelium and connective tissue in contact with a reinforced composite (BRILLIANT Crios), a cross-linked polymethylmethacrylate (TELIO CAD), and a hybrid ceramic (Vita Enamic), restored on a customised Atlantis-type abutment (Dentsply Sirona) between 60 and 180 days after restoration. (3) Results: A greater number of cells per mm2 of keratinised epithelium is observed in the reinforced composite, which could indicate greater surface roughness with greater inflammatory response. In this way, the greater number of lymphocytes and the lateral cellular composition of the inflammatory cells confirm the greater inflammatory activity towards that material. The best material to rehabilitate was hybrid ceramic, as it shows a better cellular response. (4) Conclusions: Knowing the limitations of the proposed study, despite the fact that greater inflammation is observed in the reinforced composite relative to the other materials studied, no statistically significant differences were found. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Polymeric Dental Materials)
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38 pages, 5302 KiB  
Review
Utilizing Polyethylene Terephthalate PET in Concrete: A Review
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3320; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153320 - 07 Aug 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 5063
Abstract
In general, plastic waste has been growing remarkably. Numerous waste plastic products are generated by manufacturing processes, service industries, and municipal solid waste (MSW). The increase in plastic waste increases concern about the environment and how to dispose of the generated waste. Thus, [...] Read more.
In general, plastic waste has been growing remarkably. Numerous waste plastic products are generated by manufacturing processes, service industries, and municipal solid waste (MSW). The increase in plastic waste increases concern about the environment and how to dispose of the generated waste. Thus, recycling plastic waste becomes an alternative technique to the disposal of plastic waste in a limited landfill. One of the solutions is to use plastic waste as recycled material in concrete construction to produce what is called green concrete. This research illustrates a summary of studies that utilized polyethylene terephthalate (PET) in concrete as a volume ratio or concrete aggregate replacement. It presents data with regard to mixing design and concrete behavior when PET is used. Moreover, using PET in concrete industries may reduce environmental pollution such as the emission of carbon dioxide and plastic waste disposal problems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Fiber-Reinforced Polymer Concrete)
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14 pages, 16906 KiB  
Article
Oxidation and Ablation Behavior of Particle-Filled SiCN Precursor Coatings for Thin-Film Sensors
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3319; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153319 - 07 Aug 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 959
Abstract
Polymer-derived ceramic (PDC) thin-film sensors have a very high potential for extreme environments. However, the erosion caused by high-temperature airflow at the hot-end poses a significant challenge to the stability of PDC thin-film sensors. Here, we fabricate a thin-film coating by PDC/TiB2 [...] Read more.
Polymer-derived ceramic (PDC) thin-film sensors have a very high potential for extreme environments. However, the erosion caused by high-temperature airflow at the hot-end poses a significant challenge to the stability of PDC thin-film sensors. Here, we fabricate a thin-film coating by PDC/TiB2/B composite ceramic material, which can be used to enhance the oxidation resistance and ablation resistance of the sensors. Due to the formation of a dense oxide layer on the surface of the thin-film coating in a high-temperature air environment, it effectively prevents the ingress of oxygen as a pivotal barrier. The coating exhibits an exceptionally thin oxide layer thickness of merely 8 μm, while its oxidation resistance was rigorously assessed under air exposure at 800 °C, proving its enduring protection for a minimum duration of 10 h. Additionally, during ablation testing using a flame gun that can generate temperatures of up to 1000 °C, the linear ablation rate of thin-film coating is merely 1.04 μm/min. Our analysis reveals that the volatilization of B2O3 occurs while new SiO2 is formed on the thin-film coating surface. This phenomenon leads to the absorption of heat, thereby enhancing the ablative resistance performance of the thin-film sensor. The results indicate that the thin-film sensor exhibits exceptional resistance to oxidation and ablation when protected by the coating, which has great potential for aerospace applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Smart and Functional Polymers)
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15 pages, 4112 KiB  
Article
Joint Durability of Steam-Treated Beech Wood
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3318; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153318 - 06 Aug 2023
Viewed by 766
Abstract
Steaming beech wood is one of the most commonly used eco-based processes for wood color equilibration. In addition to color equalization, steaming has also been noticed to stabilize the final product (solid wood panels). The beech wood samples used in this study were [...] Read more.
Steaming beech wood is one of the most commonly used eco-based processes for wood color equilibration. In addition to color equalization, steaming has also been noticed to stabilize the final product (solid wood panels). The beech wood samples used in this study were steamed for two different periods. PVAc and polyurethane (PU) adhesives were used to analyze bonding strength and durability. The bonding strength was measured according to the EN 13354 standard. The samples were treated before testing according to the first part of the standard, i.e., immersion in water. The durability of the bonded joint was tested according to the ISO 9142 standard. The samples were treated before testing with two methods. The results of the bonding strength show the influence of the steaming process on the bonded joint. Short exposure to steam decreased bonding strength, and prolonged exposure increased bonding strength. From the results given and the statistical analysis, it can be concluded that a prolonged steaming period increases the stability of the beech wood and thus the durability of the bonded joints. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Application of Wood-Based Composites)
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19 pages, 6031 KiB  
Article
Effect of Sterilization on the Dimensional and Mechanical Behavior of Polylactic Acid Pieces Produced by Fused Deposition Modeling
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3317; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153317 - 06 Aug 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 802
Abstract
To successfully implement additive manufacturing (AM) techniques for custom medical device (MD) production with low-cost resources, it is imperative to understand the effect of common and affordable sterilization processes, such as formaldehyde or steam sterilization, on pieces manufactured by AM. In this way, [...] Read more.
To successfully implement additive manufacturing (AM) techniques for custom medical device (MD) production with low-cost resources, it is imperative to understand the effect of common and affordable sterilization processes, such as formaldehyde or steam sterilization, on pieces manufactured by AM. In this way, the performance of low-risk MDs, such as biomodels and surgical guides, could be assessed for complying with safety, precision, and MD delivery requirements. In this context, the aim of the present work was to evaluate the effect of formaldehyde and steam sterilization on the dimensional and mechanical stability of standard polylactic acid (PLA) test pieces produced by fused deposition modeling (FDM). To achieve this, PLA samples were sterilized according to the sterilization protocol of a public hospital in the city of Bucaramanga, Colombia. Significant changes regarding mechanical and dimensional properties were found as a function of manufacturing parameters. This research attempts to contribute to the development of affordable approaches for the fabrication of functional and customized medical devices through AM technologies, an issue of particular interest for low- and middle-income countries. Full article
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14 pages, 2684 KiB  
Article
Effect of Preheating Whey Protein Concentrate on the Stability of Purple Sweet Potato Anthocyanins
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3315; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153315 - 06 Aug 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 872
Abstract
Anthocyanins (ANs) have strong antioxidant activities and can inhibit chronic diseases, but the instability of ANs limits their applications. The conservation of preheating whey protein concentrate (WPC) on the stability of purple sweet potato ANs was investigated. The retention of ANs in WPC-ANs [...] Read more.
Anthocyanins (ANs) have strong antioxidant activities and can inhibit chronic diseases, but the instability of ANs limits their applications. The conservation of preheating whey protein concentrate (WPC) on the stability of purple sweet potato ANs was investigated. The retention of ANs in WPC-ANs was 85.88% after storage at 25 °C for 5 h. WPC-ANs had higher retention of ANs in heating treatment. The retention rates of ANs in WPC-ANs exposed to light and UV lamps for 6 h were 78.72% and 85.76%, respectively. When the concentration of H2O2 was 0.50%, the retention rate of ANs in the complexes was 62.04%. WPC-ANs’ stability and antioxidant activity were improved in simulated digestive juice. The WPC-ANs connection was static quenching, and the binding force between them was a hydrophobic interaction at one binding site, according to the fluorescence quenching spectroscopy. UV-visible absorption spectroscopy and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) analysis further indicated that the secondary structure and microenvironment of amino acid residues in WPC can be impacted by the preheating temperature and preheating times of WPC. In conclusion, preheating WPC can successfully preserve the stability of purple sweet potato ANs by binding to them through a non-covalent interaction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biopolymers: Structure-Function Relationship and Application II)
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10 pages, 1581 KiB  
Article
Polyethylene Glycol-Mediated Directional Conjugation of Biological Molecules for Enhanced Immunoassays at the Point-of-Care
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3316; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153316 - 05 Aug 2023
Viewed by 1215
Abstract
Rapid and reliable point-of-care (POC) diagnostic tests can have a significant impact on global health. One of the most common approaches for developing POC systems is the use of target-specific biomolecules. However, the conjugation of biomolecules can result in decreased activity, which may [...] Read more.
Rapid and reliable point-of-care (POC) diagnostic tests can have a significant impact on global health. One of the most common approaches for developing POC systems is the use of target-specific biomolecules. However, the conjugation of biomolecules can result in decreased activity, which may compromise the analytical performance and accuracy of the developed systems. To overcome this challenge, we present a polymer-based cross-linking protocol for controlled and directed conjugation of biological molecules. Our protocol utilizes a bifunctional thiol-polyethylene glycol (PEG)-hydrazide polymer to enable site-directed conjugation of IgG antibodies to the surface of screen-printed metal electrodes. The metal surface of the electrodes is first modified with thiolated PEG molecules, leaving the hydrazide groups available to react with the aldehyde group in the Fc fragments of the oxidized IgG antibodies. Using anti-Klebsiella pneumoniae carbapenemase-2 (KPC-2) antibody as a model antibody used for antimicrobial resistance (AMR) testing, our results demonstrate a ~10-fold increase in antibody coupling compared with the standard N-hydroxysuccinimide (NHS)-based conjugation chemistry and effective capture (>94%) of the target KPC-2 enzyme antigen on the surface of modified electrodes. This straightforward and easy-to-perform strategy of site-directed antibody conjugation can be engineered for coupling other protein- and non-protein-based biological molecules commonly used in POC testing and development, thus enhancing the potential for improved diagnostic accuracy and performance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Polymeric Materials for Pharmaceutical Applications IV)
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12 pages, 4760 KiB  
Article
Effective Detergency Determination for Single Polymeric Fibers Using Confocal Microscopy
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3314; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153314 - 05 Aug 2023
Viewed by 762
Abstract
Detergency determination for single polymeric fibers is of significant importance to screening effective detergents for laundry, but remains challenging. Herein, we demonstrate a novel and effective method to quantify the detergency for single polymeric fibers using a confocal laser scanning microscope (CLSM). It [...] Read more.
Detergency determination for single polymeric fibers is of significant importance to screening effective detergents for laundry, but remains challenging. Herein, we demonstrate a novel and effective method to quantify the detergency for single polymeric fibers using a confocal laser scanning microscope (CLSM). It was applied to visualize the oil-removing process of single polymeric fibers and thus assess the detergency of various detergents. Four typical surfactants were selected for comparison, and a compounded detergent containing multiple components (e.g., anionic and nonionic surfactants, enzymes) was demonstrated to be the most effective and powerful soil-removing detergent because more than 50% of oil on the cotton fiber could be easily removed. Moreover, the oil removal process of three kinds of fibers (i.e., cotton, viscose, and polyester) was imaged and monitored by confocal microscopy. It was found that the percentage of the detergency of a single polyester fiber exceeded 70%, which is much higher than that of cotton and viscose fibers (~50%), which may be due to its relatively smooth surface. Compared to traditional methods, the CLSM imaging method is more feasible and effective to determine the detergency of detergents for single polymeric fibers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Analytical Methods for Applied Polymeric Science)
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12 pages, 12649 KiB  
Article
Effect of Two Different Ageing Exposures on the Colour Stability of Transparent Polyurethane Finishing
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3313; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153313 - 05 Aug 2023
Viewed by 640
Abstract
This paper deals with the influence of dark and light exposure on the colour change of a transparent two-component polyurethane surface finish. The surface finish with polyacrylic and aldehyde resin was applied to the surfaces of untreated and hydrothermally treated European beech, alder, [...] Read more.
This paper deals with the influence of dark and light exposure on the colour change of a transparent two-component polyurethane surface finish. The surface finish with polyacrylic and aldehyde resin was applied to the surfaces of untreated and hydrothermally treated European beech, alder, Norway maple, and Paper birch wood. The test specimens were deposited indoors for 60 days. The colour values (lightness L*, redness + a*, yellowness + b*, chroma C*, hue angle h°) were expressed in the CIELAB system. The results showed that the colour difference of the finish surfaces of all hydrothermally treated wood species was 27–50% lower after the dark than when exposed to light. In the case of finished untreated wood, the colour difference was 51–73% lower after the dark than light exposure. Only the finished untreated and hydrothermally treated Norway maple wood surfaces showed similar and significant changes after both dark and light exposure. The lower value of the colour difference of the finished hydrothermally treated wood was due to the fact that steaming wood with saturated water steam has a positive effect on the overall colour stability of the finish and partial resistance to the initiation of photolytic reactions caused by light. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in Polyurethane Materials)
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14 pages, 9906 KiB  
Article
Enhancing Char Formation and Flame Retardancy of Ethylene-Vinyl Acetate Copolymer (EVA)/Aluminum Hydroxide (ATH) Composites by Grafting Ladder Phenyl/Vinyl Polysilsesquioxane (PhVPOSS)
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3312; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153312 - 05 Aug 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 963
Abstract
The ladder phenyl/vinyl polysilsesquioxane (PhVPOSS) was used to improve the flame-retardancy performances of ethylene-vinyl acetate copolymer (EVA)/aluminum hydroxide (ATH) composites due to the reactivity of its vinyl groups. FTIR, XPS, 1H NMR, and SEM-EDS data demonstrated the PhVPOSS grafting onto EVA molecular [...] Read more.
The ladder phenyl/vinyl polysilsesquioxane (PhVPOSS) was used to improve the flame-retardancy performances of ethylene-vinyl acetate copolymer (EVA)/aluminum hydroxide (ATH) composites due to the reactivity of its vinyl groups. FTIR, XPS, 1H NMR, and SEM-EDS data demonstrated the PhVPOSS grafting onto EVA molecular chains. The PhVPOSS improved the thermal stability of EVA/ATH composites, as shown by the thermogravimetric analysis (TGA). Furthermore, with the cone calorimeter (CONE) experiments, EVA/ATH/PhVPOSS showed better fire safety than the EVA/ATH composites, with the PHRR, PSPR, and PCOP reduced by 7.89%, 57.4%, and 90.9%, respectively. The mechanism investigations of flame retardancy revealed that the charring behaviors of the EVA/ATH/PhVPOSS composites were improved by the formation of Si-C bonds and Si-O bonds, and a more compact and denser char layer can contribute more to the barrier effect. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Polymer Composites and Nanocomposites)
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14 pages, 5584 KiB  
Article
Effects of Pulsed Electric Field on the Physicochemical and Structural Properties of Micellar Casein
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3311; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153311 - 04 Aug 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 839
Abstract
Pulsed electric field (PEF) as a green processing technology is drawing greater attention due to its eco-friendliness and potential to promote sustainable development goals. In this study, the effects of different electric field strengths (EFS, 0–30 kV/cm) on the structure and physicochemical features [...] Read more.
Pulsed electric field (PEF) as a green processing technology is drawing greater attention due to its eco-friendliness and potential to promote sustainable development goals. In this study, the effects of different electric field strengths (EFS, 0–30 kV/cm) on the structure and physicochemical features of casein micelles (CSMs) were investigated. It was found that the particle sizes of CSMs increased at low EFS (10 kV/cm) but decreased at high EFS (30 kV/cm). The absolute ζ-potential at 30 kV/cm increased from −26.6 (native CSMs) to −29.5 mV. Moreover, it was noticed that PEF treatment leads to changes in the surface hydrophobicity; it slightly increased at low EFS (10 kV/cm) but decreased at EFS > 10 kV/cm. PEF enhanced the protein solubility from 84.9 (native CSMs) to 87.1% (at 10 kV/cm). PEF at low EFS (10 kV/cm) intensified the emission fluorescence spectrum of CSMs, while higher EFS reduced the fluorescence intensity compared to native CSMs. Moreover, the analysis of the Amide Ι region showed that PEF-treated CSMs reduced the α-helix and increased the β-sheet content. Raman spectra confirmed that PEF treatment > 10 kV/cm buried tyrosine (Tyr) residues in a hydrophobic environment. It was also found that PEF treatment mainly induced changes in the disulfide linkages. In conclusion, PEF technology can be employed as an eco-friendly technology to change the structure and physiochemical properties of CSMs; this could improve their techno-functional properties. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physical Properties of Foods Based on Milk Protein/Plant Protein)
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17 pages, 5279 KiB  
Article
Improved Optimization of a Coextrusion Die with a Complex Geometry Using the Coupling Inverse Design Method
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3310; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153310 - 04 Aug 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 934
Abstract
The main challenge in a polymer coextrusion process is to have a good die design prior to the process, which can minimize the geometric errors that are caused by extrusion swell and interface motion. For this purpose, a coupling method of optimization and [...] Read more.
The main challenge in a polymer coextrusion process is to have a good die design prior to the process, which can minimize the geometric errors that are caused by extrusion swell and interface motion. For this purpose, a coupling method of optimization and inverse design for a coextrusion die was studied for a medical striped catheter. In the study, the main material was thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU), and the auxiliary material was TPU filled with 30 wt% barium sulfate. An overall optimization design method was used to optimize the geometry of the extrusion die channel for the striped catheter, which had a complex geometry. In the global optimization process, the local inverse design method was used to design the inlet of the auxiliary material. The non-linear programming by quadratic Lagrangian (NLPQL) algorithm was used to obtain the optimal geometric solution of the coextrusion die runner. The experimental verification results showed that the coupling method for coextrusion die design improved the design efficiency of the coextrusion die remarkably. The value of the objective function, which was used to measure the geometric error of the product, was reduced by 72.3% compared with the initial die design. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Extrusion of Polymer Blends and Composites)
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10 pages, 2847 KiB  
Article
Nanofiltration Performance of Poly(p-xylylene) Nanofilms with Imidazole Side Chains
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3309; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153309 - 04 Aug 2023
Viewed by 862
Abstract
Herein, we report the nanofiltration performance of poly(p-xylylene) thin films with imidazole side chains that were deposited onto commercial polyethersulfone ultrafiltration membranes using a chemical vapor deposition process. The resulting thin films with a few tens of nanometers exhibited water permeation [...] Read more.
Herein, we report the nanofiltration performance of poly(p-xylylene) thin films with imidazole side chains that were deposited onto commercial polyethersulfone ultrafiltration membranes using a chemical vapor deposition process. The resulting thin films with a few tens of nanometers exhibited water permeation under a pressure difference of 0.5 MPa and selectively rejected water-soluble organic dyes based on their molecular sizes. Additionally, thin flaky ZIF-L crystals (Zn(mim)2·(Hmim)1/2·(H2O)3/2) (Hmim = 2-methylimidazole) formed on the surface of imidazole-containing poly(p-xylylene) films, and the composite films demonstrated the ability to adsorb methylene blue molecules within the cavities of ZIF-L. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Polymer Membranes for Adsorption and Separation Applications)
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13 pages, 3489 KiB  
Article
Single, Double and ETL-Sandwiched PVPy Interlayer Effect on Charge Injection Balance and Performance of Inverted Quantum Dot Light-Emitting Diodes
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3308; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153308 - 04 Aug 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1039
Abstract
A desire to achieve optimal electron transport from the electron transport layer (ETL) towards the emissive layer (EML) is an important research factor for the realization of high performance quantum dot light-emitting diodes (QD-LEDs). In this paper, we study the effect of a [...] Read more.
A desire to achieve optimal electron transport from the electron transport layer (ETL) towards the emissive layer (EML) is an important research factor for the realization of high performance quantum dot light-emitting diodes (QD-LEDs). In this paper, we study the effect of a single, double, and electron transport layer sandwiched Poly(4-vinylpyridine) (PVPy here on) on the charge injection balance and on the overall device performance of InP-based red quantum dot light emitting diodes (red QD-LEDs). The results showed general improvement of device characteristic performance metrics such as operational life with incorporation of a PVPy interlayer. The best performance was observed at a lower concentration of PVPy (@ 0.1 mg/mL) in interlayer with continual worsening in performance as PVPy concentration in the interlayer increased in other fabricated devices. The AFM images obtained for the different materials reported improved surface morphology and overall improved surface properties, but decreased overall device performance as PVPy concentration in interlayer was increased. Furthermore, we fabricated two special devices: in the first special device, a single 0.1 mg/mL PVPy sandwiched between two ZnO ETL layers, and in the second special device, two 0.1 mg/mL PVPy interlayers were inter-sandwiched between two ZnO ETL layers. Particular emphasis was placed on monitoring the maximum obtained EQE and the maximum obtained luminance of all the devices. The first special device showed better all-round improved performance than the second special device compared to the reference device (without PVPy) and the device with a single 0.1 mg/mL PVPy interlayer stacked between ZnO ETL and the emissive layer. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Application of Polymer Materials in Optoelectronic Devices)
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15 pages, 5730 KiB  
Article
Design and Analysis of a New Multi-Part Composite Frangible Cover
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3307; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153307 - 04 Aug 2023
Viewed by 831
Abstract
In this paper, a new multi-part composite frangible cover (MCFC) was designed and fabricated. The frangible cover, manufactured with a traditional manual lay-up method, is designed to conduct a simulated missile launch test using a specially developed test device. A weak zone structure [...] Read more.
In this paper, a new multi-part composite frangible cover (MCFC) was designed and fabricated. The frangible cover, manufactured with a traditional manual lay-up method, is designed to conduct a simulated missile launch test using a specially developed test device. A weak zone structure of the composite multi-part frangible cover was designed, and the separation process of the cover was studied by numerical simulation. Based on the strength envelope of the weak zone and the equal-strength design principle, a design method for the weak zone structure of the composite multi-part frangible cover was proposed. A finite element model of the composite multi-part frangible cover was established, and the separation process was numerically simulated and analyzed. Afterward, the verification experiments were carried out. Close agreements between the numerical and experimental results are observed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Challenges and Trends in Polymer Composites)
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32 pages, 11245 KiB  
Article
Durability of GFRP and CFRP Bars in the Pore Solution of Calcium Sulfoaluminate Cement Concrete Made with Fresh or Seawater
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3306; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153306 - 04 Aug 2023
Viewed by 847
Abstract
Calcium sulfoaluminate cement concrete (CSAC) reinforced by fiber-reinforced polymer (FRP) bars, termed bars for brevity, is a good alternative to steel-reinforced concrete in marine environments due to the corrosion resistance of FRP and the lower pH of CSAC. For the first time, multi-mechanical [...] Read more.
Calcium sulfoaluminate cement concrete (CSAC) reinforced by fiber-reinforced polymer (FRP) bars, termed bars for brevity, is a good alternative to steel-reinforced concrete in marine environments due to the corrosion resistance of FRP and the lower pH of CSAC. For the first time, multi-mechanical tests are conducted to compare the durability of glass FRP (GFRP) to that of carbon FRP (CFRP) after exposure to CSAC pore solution. The bars were immersed in a simulated pore solution of CSAC made with either fresh water and river sand or with seawater and sea sand. Solution temperature was held constant at 30 °C, 45 °C or 60 °C for 30, 60, 90 and 180 days of immersion. Tensile, horizontal and transverse shear tests, as well as detailed microstructural analyses, were conducted to determine the level and mechanisms of degradation for each type of bar. Sea salt increases the degradation of both bars, but it degrades GFRP more than CFRP. The bars’ retained tensile strength is a reliable indicator of their durability, while their post-exposure horizontal and transverse shear strengths are found inconsistent and counter intuitive. In the GFRP, the fiber, the epoxy matrix and their interface suffered damage, but in the CFRP, the carbon fiber was not damaged. Under the test conditions in this study, the maximum reduction in the tensile strength of the GFRP was 56.9% while that of CFRP was 15.1%. Based on the relevant ASTM standard, the CFRP bar satisfies the alkaline resistance requirement of the standard in the CSAC pore solution with and without salt, whereas the GFRP bar does not meet the same requirement in the above pore solution with salt. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Polymer Composites and Nanocomposites)
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24 pages, 4630 KiB  
Review
Recent Advances of Natural-Polymer-Based Hydrogels for Wound Antibacterial Therapeutics
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3305; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153305 - 04 Aug 2023
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1596
Abstract
Hydrogels have a three-dimensional network structure and high-water content, are similar in structure to the extracellular matrix, and are often used as wound dressings. Natural polymers have excellent biocompatibility and biodegradability and are commonly utilized to prepare hydrogels. Natural-polymer-based hydrogels can have excellent [...] Read more.
Hydrogels have a three-dimensional network structure and high-water content, are similar in structure to the extracellular matrix, and are often used as wound dressings. Natural polymers have excellent biocompatibility and biodegradability and are commonly utilized to prepare hydrogels. Natural-polymer-based hydrogels can have excellent antibacterial and bioactive properties by loading antibacterial agents or being combined with therapeutics such as phototherapy, which has great advantages in the field of treatment of microbial infections. In the published reviews of hydrogels used in the treatment of infectious wounds, the common classification criteria of hydrogels include function, source of antibacterial properties, type of antibacterial agent, etc. However, there are few reviews on the classification of hydrogels based on raw materials, and the description of natural-polymer-based hydrogels is not comprehensive and detailed. In this paper, based on the principle of material classification, the characteristics of seven types of natural polymers that can be used to prepare hydrogels are discussed, respectively, and the application of natural-polymer-based hydrogels in the treatment of infectious wounds is described in detail. Finally, the research status, limitations, and prospects of natural-polymer-based hydrogels are briefly discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bioactive Polymer Materials with Antibacterial Properties)
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11 pages, 2325 KiB  
Article
Dual-Cure Adhesives Using a Newly Synthesized Itaconic Acid-Based Epoxy Acrylate Oligomer
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3304; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153304 - 04 Aug 2023
Viewed by 884
Abstract
Herein, a novel biomass-derived itaconic acid (IA)-based epoxy acrylate oligomer (EAO) is synthesized by means of the esterification reaction of the epoxy group of bisphenol A diglycidyl ether (BADGE) with the carboxylic group of IA. The detailed chemical structure of the as-prepared bisphenol [...] Read more.
Herein, a novel biomass-derived itaconic acid (IA)-based epoxy acrylate oligomer (EAO) is synthesized by means of the esterification reaction of the epoxy group of bisphenol A diglycidyl ether (BADGE) with the carboxylic group of IA. The detailed chemical structure of the as-prepared bisphenol A diglycidyl ether diitaconate (BI) is characterized via the KOH value, FT-IR spectrum, and 1H-NMR spectrum. Further, a dual-cure adhesive system is formulated using BADGE, acrylic acid, and trimethylolpropane triacrylate with various BI contents, and the adhesive performance is investigated by measuring the thermal stability, adhesive properties, pencil hardness, and surface energy properties. Thus, the dual-cure adhesive with a BI content of 0.3 mol is shown to provide excellent thermal stability, along with an adhesive strength of 10.7 MPa, a pencil hardness of 2H, and a similar surface energy to that of a typical polycarbonate film. In addition, the properties of the BI-based dual-cure adhesive are compared with those of the dual-cure adhesives based on bisphenol A glycerolate diacrylate or bisphenol A glycerolate dimethacrylate. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Preparation and Application of Biomass-Based Materials)
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36 pages, 7391 KiB  
Article
Fabrication, Characterization, and Microbial Biodegradation of Transparent Nanodehydrated Bioplastic (NDB) Membranes Using Novel Casting, Dehydration, and Peeling Techniques
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3303; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153303 - 04 Aug 2023
Viewed by 1105
Abstract
NDBs were fabricated from gum Arabic (GA) and polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) in different ratios using novel techniques (casting, dehydration, and peeling). The GA/PVA blends were cast with a novel vibration-free horizontal flow (VFHF) technique, producing membranes free of air bubble defects with a [...] Read more.
NDBs were fabricated from gum Arabic (GA) and polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) in different ratios using novel techniques (casting, dehydration, and peeling). The GA/PVA blends were cast with a novel vibration-free horizontal flow (VFHF) technique, producing membranes free of air bubble defects with a homogenous texture, smooth surface, and constant thickness. The casting process was achieved on a self-electrostatic template (SET) made of poly-(methyl methacrylate), which made peeling the final product membranes easy due to its non-stick behavior. After settling the casting of the membranous, while blind, the sheets were dried using nanometric dehydration under a mild vacuum stream using a novel stratified nano-dehydrator (SND) loaded with P2O5. After drying the NDB, the dry, smooth membranes were peeled easily without scratching defects. The physicochemical properties of the NDBs were investigated using FTIR, XRD, TGA, DTA, and AFM to ensure that the novel techniques did not distort the product quality. The NDBs retained their virgin characteristics, namely, their chemical functional groups (FTIR results), crystallinity index (XRD data), thermal stability (TGA and DTA), and ultrastructural features (surface roughness and permeability), as well as their microbial biodegradation ability. Adding PVA enhanced the membrane’s properties except for mass loss, whereby increasing the GA allocation in the NDB blend reduces its mass loss at elevated temperatures. The produced bioplastic membranes showed suitable mechanical properties for food packaging applications and in the pharmaceutical industry for the controlled release of drugs. In comparison to control samples, the separated bacteria and fungi destroyed the bioplastic membranes. Pseudomonas spp. and Bacillus spp. were the two main strains of isolated bacteria, and Rhizobus spp. was the main fungus. The nano-dehydration method gave the best solution for the prompt drying of water-based biopolymers free of manufacturing defects, with simple and easily acquired machinery required for the casting and peeling tasks, in addition to its wonderful biodegradation behavior when buried in wet soil. Full article
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18 pages, 3413 KiB  
Article
Terahertz Humidity Sensing Based on Surface-Modified Polymer Mesh Membranes with Photografting PEGMA Brush
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3302; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153302 - 04 Aug 2023
Viewed by 696
Abstract
A simple and compact intensity-interrogated terahertz (THz) relative humidity (RH) sensing platform is successfully demonstrated in experiments on the basis of combining a porous polymer sensing membrane and a continuous THz electronic system. The RH-sensing membrane is fabricated by surface modification of a [...] Read more.
A simple and compact intensity-interrogated terahertz (THz) relative humidity (RH) sensing platform is successfully demonstrated in experiments on the basis of combining a porous polymer sensing membrane and a continuous THz electronic system. The RH-sensing membrane is fabricated by surface modification of a porous polymer substrate with hydrophilic and photosensitive copolymer brushes via a UV-induced graft-polymerization process. The intensity interrogation sensing scheme indicated that the power reduction of the 0.4 THz wave is dependent on the grafting density of the copolymer brushes and proportional to the RH percent levels in the humidity-controlled air-sealed chamber. This finding was verified by the water contact angle measurement. Based on the slope of the proportional relation, the best sensitivity of the hydrophilic surface-modified sensing membrane was demonstrated at 0.0423 mV/% RH at the copolymer brush density of 1.57 mg/mm3 grafted on the single side of the sensing membrane. The sensitivity corresponds to a detection limit of approximately 1% RH. The THz RH sensing membrane was proven to exhibit the advantages of low loss, low cost, flexibility, high sensitivity, high RH resolution, and a wide RH working range of 25–99%. Thus, it is a good candidate for novel applications of wearable electronics, water- or moisture-related industrial and bio-sensing. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Modification of Natural Polymers)
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7 pages, 2212 KiB  
Communication
Fabrication of Highly Sensitive Capacitive Pressure Sensors Using a Bubble-Popping PDMS
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3301; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153301 - 04 Aug 2023
Viewed by 732
Abstract
Attempts have been made to introduce microstructures or wrinkles into the elastomer surface to increase the sensitivity of the elastomer. However, the disadvantage of this method is that when a force is applied to the pressure sensor, the contact area with the electrode [...] Read more.
Attempts have been made to introduce microstructures or wrinkles into the elastomer surface to increase the sensitivity of the elastomer. However, the disadvantage of this method is that when a force is applied to the pressure sensor, the contact area with the electrode is changed and the linear response characteristic of the pressure sensor is reduced. The biggest advantage of the capacitive pressure sensor using an elastomer is that it is a characteristic that changes linearly according to the change in pressure, so it is not suitable to introduce microstructures or wrinkles into the elastomer surface. A method of increasing the sensitivity of the capacitive pressure sensor while maintaining the linearity according to the pressure change is proposed. We proposed a bubble-popping PDMS by creating pores inside the elastomer. The sensitivity of the pressure sensor made of the bubble-popping PDMS was approximately 4.6 times better than that of the pressure sensor without pores, and the pressure sensor made of the bubble-popping PDMS showed a high linear response characteristic to the external pressure change. These results show that our pressure sensor can be used to detect applied pressures or contact forces of e-skins. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Polymer-Based Sensor)
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6 pages, 209 KiB  
Editorial
“Polymers from Renewable Resources”: Key Findings from This Topic Special Issue
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3300; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153300 - 04 Aug 2023
Viewed by 2062
Abstract
The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has estimated that about one-third of the food produced for human consumption is currently lost or wasted, resulted in an estimated approximately USD 750 billion of direct costs for food producers every year [...] Read more.
The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has estimated that about one-third of the food produced for human consumption is currently lost or wasted, resulted in an estimated approximately USD 750 billion of direct costs for food producers every year [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Polymers from Renewable Resources)
13 pages, 2607 KiB  
Article
Ladder Polyphenylsilsesquioxanes and Their Niobium–Siloxane Composite as Coating Materials: Spectroscopy and Atomic Oxygen Resistance Study
Polymers 2023, 15(15), 3299; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym15153299 - 04 Aug 2023
Viewed by 764
Abstract
In order to expand the range of materials that can be used in outer space and in development of small spacecraft, ladder polyphenylsilsesquioxanes with different molar weights and the Nb-siloxane composites based on them were studied. The properties of the polymer films were [...] Read more.
In order to expand the range of materials that can be used in outer space and in development of small spacecraft, ladder polyphenylsilsesquioxanes with different molar weights and the Nb-siloxane composites based on them were studied. The properties of the polymer films were studied, including tests in an oxygen plasma flow. Both initial and filled ladder polymers feature extremely low erosion coefficients in the region of 10–26 cm3/atom O at a high fluence of atomic oxygen of 1.0 × 1021 atom O/cm2. Ladder polyphenylsilsesquioxane films irradiated with atomic oxygen (AO) retain their integrity, do not crack, and exhibit good optical properties, in particular, a high transmittance. The latter slightly decreases during AO exposure. The Nb-siloxane filling retains the AO resistance and slight decrease in optical transmission due to diffuse scattering on the formed Nb-[(SiO)x] nanoparticles. Ladder polyphenylsilsesquioxanes demonstrate their suitability for creating protective, optically transparent coatings for small spacecraft that are resistant to the erosive effects of incoming oxygen plasma. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Polymer-Containing Nanomaterials: Synthesis, Properties, Applications)
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