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J. Compos. Sci., Volume 7, Issue 2 (February 2023) – 47 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Global demand for electricity is growing faster than renewable energy sources. Electricity production from renewable sources (i.e., biomass energy, geothermal energy, hydro energy, solar energy, tidal energy, wind energy) is on its way to strong growth around the world over the next dozen years. This article aims to provide a comprehensive overview of the research into the application of composite materials in mainstream power generation. The main energy generation technologies, i.e., photovoltaic panels, wind turbines, fuel cells, and biogas generators, are analysed and discussed. The review presented in this article also covers the latest achievements and prospects for the use of composite materials in energy generation devices. View this paper
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23 pages, 4426 KiB  
Article
Characterization of UV Light Curable Piezoelectric 0-0-3 Composites Filled with Lead-Free Ceramics and Conductive Nanoparticles
by Rytis Mitkus, Lena Piechowiak and Michael Sinapius
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 89; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020089 - 20 Feb 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1720
Abstract
Lead-free piezoelectric materials are essential for our healthy future but offer lower performance than lead-based materials. Different material combinations are explored to improve the performance of lead-free materials. By filling the UV light curable photopolymer resin with 30 vol.% lead-free piezoelectric ceramics and [...] Read more.
Lead-free piezoelectric materials are essential for our healthy future but offer lower performance than lead-based materials. Different material combinations are explored to improve the performance of lead-free materials. By filling the UV light curable photopolymer resin with 30 vol.% lead-free piezoelectric ceramics and with up to 0.4 wt.% conductive nanofillers, thin and flexible piezoelectric 0-0-3 composites are formed. Two particle sizes of Potassium Sodium Niobate (KNN) and Barium Titanate (BTO) ceramics were used with four conductive nanofillers: Graphene Nanoplatelets (GNPs), Multi-Walled Carbon Nanotubes (MWCNTs), and two types of Graphene Oxide (GO). Resulting high viscosity suspensions are tape-cast in a mold as thin layers and subsequently exposing them to UV light, piezoelectric composite sensors are formed in 80 s. Even low nanofiller concentrations increase relative permittivities, however, they strongly reduce curing depth and increase undesirable dielectric losses. Non-homogeneous dispersion of nanofillers is observed. In total, 36 different compositions were mixed and characterized. Only six selected material compositions were investigated further by measuring mechanical, dielectric, and piezoelectric properties. Results show KNN composite performance as piezoelectric sensors is almost six times higher than BTO composite performance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Characterization and Modelling of Composites, Volume III)
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13 pages, 6400 KiB  
Article
The Effect of Pulse Current on Electrolytically Plating Nickel as a Catalyst for Grafting Carbon Nanotubes onto Carbon Fibers via the Chemical Vapor Deposition Method
by Kazuto Tanaka and Shuhei Kyoyama
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 88; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020088 - 19 Feb 2023
Viewed by 1199
Abstract
Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) can be directly grafted onto the surface of carbon fibers using the chemical vapor deposition method, in which nanometer-order nickel (Ni) particles, serving as catalysts, are plated onto the surface of carbon fibers via electrolytic plating. In our previous studies, [...] Read more.
Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) can be directly grafted onto the surface of carbon fibers using the chemical vapor deposition method, in which nanometer-order nickel (Ni) particles, serving as catalysts, are plated onto the surface of carbon fibers via electrolytic plating. In our previous studies, in which a direct current (DC) was used to electrolytically plate Ni onto carbon fibers as a catalyst, the site densities and diameters of Ni particles increased simultaneously with the plating time, making it difficult to independently control the site densities and diameters of the particles. On the other hand, pulse current (PC) plating is attracting attention as a plating technique that can control the deposition morphology of nuclei. In this study, we clarify the effect of the parameters of the PC on the particle number per unit area (site density) and the particle diameters of Ni particles plated onto the surface of carbon fibers, using the PC to electrolytically plate Ni. Electrolytically plating Ni onto carbon fibers (via PC) after the removal of the sizing agent enable Ni particles with sparser site densities and larger diameters to be plated than those plated via DC. Using Ni particles with sparse site densities, it is shown that CNTs with sparse site densities can be grafted. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Carbon Fiber Composites, Volume II)
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17 pages, 2335 KiB  
Article
Static and Dynamic Analysis of Linear Piezoelectric Structures Using Higher Order Shear Deformation Theories
by Konstantinos I. Ntaflos, Konstantinos G. Beltsios and Evangelos P. Hadjigeorgiou
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 87; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020087 - 17 Feb 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1405
Abstract
This paper explores the effects of shear deformation on piezoelectric materials and structures that often serve as substrate layers of multilayer composite sensors and actuators. Based on higher-order shear elastic deformation and electric potential distribution theories, a general mathematical model is derived. Governing [...] Read more.
This paper explores the effects of shear deformation on piezoelectric materials and structures that often serve as substrate layers of multilayer composite sensors and actuators. Based on higher-order shear elastic deformation and electric potential distribution theories, a general mathematical model is derived. Governing equations and the associated boundary conditions for a piezoelectric beam are developed using a generalized Hamilton’s principle. The static and dynamic behavior of the piezoelectric structure is investigated. A bending problem in static analysis and a free vibration problem in dynamic analysis are solved. The obtained results are in very good agreement with the results of the exact two dimensional solution available in the literature. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers in Journal of Composites Science in 2022)
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17 pages, 3124 KiB  
Review
Biomedical Applications of Blow-Spun Coatings, Mats, and Scaffolds—A Mini-Review
by Mohammadmahdi Mobaraki, Meichen Liu, Abdul-Razak Masoud and David K. Mills
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 86; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020086 - 17 Feb 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1624
Abstract
Human tissues and disease models require well-defined biomimetic microenvironments. During the past decade, innovative developments in materials science, microfabrication, and polymer science have provided us with the ability to manipulate cellular microenvironments for regenerative medicine and tissue engineering applications. Solution blow spinning is [...] Read more.
Human tissues and disease models require well-defined biomimetic microenvironments. During the past decade, innovative developments in materials science, microfabrication, and polymer science have provided us with the ability to manipulate cellular microenvironments for regenerative medicine and tissue engineering applications. Solution blow spinning is a facile fiber fabricating method that requires a simple apparatus, a concentrated polymer solution within a volatile solvent, and a high-pressure gas source. Commercially available airbrushes, typically used for painting and cosmetic makeup, have successfully generated a range of nanofibers and films. Applications under investigation are similar to electrospinning and include enzyme immobilization, drug delivery, filtration, infection protection, tissue engineering, and wound healing. This review will discuss fiber fabrication methods before a more detailed discussion of the potential of blow-spinning in biomedical applications. Full article
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12 pages, 1809 KiB  
Article
Preparation and Properties of Flame-Retardant Polyurethane Pressure Sensitive Adhesive and Its Application
by Lijuan Zeng, Liu Yang, Junbang Liu, Shangkai Lu, Lianghui Ai, Yang Dong, Zhibin Ye and Ping Liu
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 85; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020085 - 16 Feb 2023
Viewed by 1466
Abstract
Using 10-(2,5-dihydroxyphenyl)-10-hydrogen-9-oxo-10-phosphine-10-oxide (DOPO-H Q), N,N-diethyl-bis(hydroxyethyl) aminomethylene phosphate diethyl (FRC-6), and (6-oxo- 6H-dibenzo[c,e][1,2]oxphosphine-6-yl) hydroxylmethyl-thiophene (DOPO-SF) as reactive flame retardants, the flame-retardant polyurethane pressure sensitive adhesive (FRPU-PSA) were prepared. The fourier transform infrared (FTIR), thermogravimetric analysis (TG), limiting oxygen index (LOI), vertical combustion (UL 94), [...] Read more.
Using 10-(2,5-dihydroxyphenyl)-10-hydrogen-9-oxo-10-phosphine-10-oxide (DOPO-H Q), N,N-diethyl-bis(hydroxyethyl) aminomethylene phosphate diethyl (FRC-6), and (6-oxo- 6H-dibenzo[c,e][1,2]oxphosphine-6-yl) hydroxylmethyl-thiophene (DOPO-SF) as reactive flame retardants, the flame-retardant polyurethane pressure sensitive adhesive (FRPU-PSA) were prepared. The fourier transform infrared (FTIR), thermogravimetric analysis (TG), limiting oxygen index (LOI), vertical combustion (UL 94), 180° peeling, and inclined ball rolling were used to characterize and investigate the properties of FRPU-PSA. It was found that the LOI of PU/50mol%DOPO-HQ, PU/50mol%FRC-6, and PU/20wt%DOPO-SF were 30.7%, 29.3%, and 25.0%, respectively, the peel strength of PU/50mol%DOPO-HQ and PU/50mol%FRC-6 were 3.88N/25 mm and 3.42N/25 mm, respectively. FRPU-PSA not only had good bond strength, but also had good flame retardant performance. Full article
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15 pages, 611 KiB  
Review
Heavy Metal Removal from Aqueous Solutions Using Biomaterials and/or Functional Composites: Recent Advances and the Way Forward in Wastewater Treatment Using Digitalization
by Tonni Agustiono Kurniawan, Wai-Hung Lo, Xue Liang, Hui Hwang Goh, Mohd Hafiz Dzarfan Othman, Kok-Keong Chong, Ayesha Mohyuddin, Axel Olaf Kern and Kit Wayne Chew
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 84; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020084 - 16 Feb 2023
Cited by 29 | Viewed by 2947
Abstract
Due to its low cost, over the past decades, biosorption technology has been extensively carried out to treat heavy metal-laden wastewater using biosorbents. Recent studies on heavy metal biosorption mechanisms and the simulation of mathematical modeling on the biosorption process have enhanced scientific [...] Read more.
Due to its low cost, over the past decades, biosorption technology has been extensively carried out to treat heavy metal-laden wastewater using biosorbents. Recent studies on heavy metal biosorption mechanisms and the simulation of mathematical modeling on the biosorption process have enhanced scientific understanding about the binding between target metal cations and the functional group on different surfaces of biomasses as a biosorbent. However, so far, none have provided an overview of mechanistic studies on heavy metal removal from aqueous solutions using inexpensive biosorbents. To close this knowledge gap, this article discusses the applicability of the surface complexation (SC) model for biosorption of a target pollutant. Insightful ideas and directions of future research in wastewater treatment using digital technologies are also presented. It was conclusive from a literature survey of 115 articles (1987–2023) that Aspergillus niger, Penicillium chrysogenum, and Rhizopus nigricans represent biomaterials that have substantial adsorption capacities, up to 200 mg of Au(I)/g, 142 mg of Th/g, and 166 mg of Pb(II)/g, respectively. The metal-binding mechanisms involved include ion exchange, surface complexation, and micro-precipitation. Ion exchange is the only mechanisms that play key roles in sequestering heavy metal using fungal cells with chitin and chitosan. X-ray energy dispersion (XED) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) analysis were used to evaluate biosorption mechanisms of the inorganic pollutants using physico-chemical characterization on the cell surfaces of the biomass. As metal removal by the biosorbent is affected by its surface properties, surface complexation also occurs. The affinity of the surface complexation depends on the type of functional groups such as phosphate, carboxyl, and amine. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composite Materials for Environmental Applications)
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12 pages, 3847 KiB  
Article
Investigation on Layer Hybridization of Glass/Carbon Fibre Woven Reinforced Composites Subjected to Low-Speed Impact
by Raluca Maier and Andrei-Cristian Mandoc
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 83; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020083 - 16 Feb 2023
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1367
Abstract
The present investigation was conducted on the low-speed impact response of quasi-isotropic [±45/0/90°]xs hybrid composite through laboratory level experimental tests. The purpose was to understand the behaviour that the different stacking sequences of hybrid glass/carbon fibre composites has on the ability of [...] Read more.
The present investigation was conducted on the low-speed impact response of quasi-isotropic [±45/0/90°]xs hybrid composite through laboratory level experimental tests. The purpose was to understand the behaviour that the different stacking sequences of hybrid glass/carbon fibre composites has on the ability of the material to sustain loads during low-speed impact events without developing critical structural failure in the material and improving the impact energy absorption properties, which is a relevant matter in aerospace and automotive industries. Drop-weight impact tests were carried out on two different laminates, with different stacking sequences, each of which were 16 symmetric inter-ply hybrid laminates named GC [+45G/−45C/0G/90C]4s and, respectively, G-C [+45G/−45G/0G/90G/+45C/−45C/0C/90C]2s, where G stands for glass fibre and C for carbon fibre. Both were comprised of epoxy matrix reinforced carbon/E-glass fibre woven fabric composites. The outcome of changing the hybrid stacking sequence, on the impact performances, was discussed. The damage morphologies and local failure mechanisms were analysed using visual inspection and a high-resolution laser scanner. Under 33 J impact energy, both tested hybrid composites exhibited approximately 10 kN peak load. Nevertheless, one key parameter, the time to peak load, significantly changed; the damage initiation threshold for GC samples occurred immediately before 6 kN, whereas for G-C samples this threshold appeared much earlier. This type of behaviour was partly connected to the delay in the propagation of delamination and fibre breakage, which was influenced by the high elastic energy absorption of the carbon fibres when compared with the glass fibres. The absorbed energy was higher for GC configuration, whereas a higher DI was observed for samples G-C indicating that a high percentage of the total energy was dissipated through the propagation of in-plane and out-of-plane fibre/matrix cracks. No perforation was observed on either configuration; nevertheless, the damage area significantly changed both in size and appearance from one configuration to another. Full article
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15 pages, 3525 KiB  
Review
Cool-Clave—An Energy Efficient Autoclave
by Indraneel R. Chowdhury and John Summerscales
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 82; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020082 - 16 Feb 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 4232
Abstract
Out-of-autoclave (OOA) manufacturing techniques for composites result in lower fibre volume fractions than for fully compressed laminates. The lower fibre volume fraction produces a higher resin volume fraction, which becomes resin-rich volumes (RRV). Textile reinforcements with clustered fibres and consequent RRV generally have [...] Read more.
Out-of-autoclave (OOA) manufacturing techniques for composites result in lower fibre volume fractions than for fully compressed laminates. The lower fibre volume fraction produces a higher resin volume fraction, which becomes resin-rich volumes (RRV). Textile reinforcements with clustered fibres and consequent RRV generally have low strength but high in-plane process permeability, whereas the opposite is true for uniformly distributed fibres. The inevitable increase in resin volume fraction of OOA composites often compromises composite performance and leads to relatively higher weight and fuel consumption in transport applications. The retention of autoclave processing is recommended for highest performance when compression press moulding is not appropriate (for example, for complex 3D components). The traditional autoclave processing of composites heats not only the component to be cured but also parasitic air and the vessel insulation. Subject to minor modifications of the pressure vessel, electrically heated tooling could be implemented. This approach would need to balance insulation of the heated tool surface (and any heater blanket on the counter-face) against the quenching effect during the introduction of the pressurised cool air. This process optimisation would significantly reduce energy consumption. Additionally, the laminate on the heated tool could be taken to the end of the dwell period before loading the autoclave, leading to significant reductions in cure cycle times. Components could be cured simultaneously at different temperatures provided that there are sufficient power and control circuits in the autoclave. While autoclave processing has usually involved vacuum-bagged pre-impregnated reinforcements, implementation of the cool-clave technique could also provide a scope for using the pressure vessel to cure vacuum-infused composites. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Manufacturing of Fibrous Composites for Engineering Applications)
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14 pages, 6346 KiB  
Article
Organomorphic Silicon Carbide Reinforcing Preform Formation Mechanism
by Evgeny Bogachev
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 81; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020081 - 15 Feb 2023
Viewed by 1054
Abstract
Development of the organomorphic ceramic-matrix composites (CMCs), where the reinforcing preform is built using polymer fibers subject essentially to hot pressing, was motivated by a desire to obtain much higher structural uniformity as well as to reduce the number of the process steps [...] Read more.
Development of the organomorphic ceramic-matrix composites (CMCs), where the reinforcing preform is built using polymer fibers subject essentially to hot pressing, was motivated by a desire to obtain much higher structural uniformity as well as to reduce the number of the process steps involved in the production of CMCs. This paper addresses the peculiarities of the organomorphic silicon carbide preform formation process. Using X-ray phase analysis, tomography, mass and IR spectroscopy, and thermomechanical and X-ray microanalysis, both the properties of the initial fibers of polycarbosilane (PCS)—the silicon carbide fiber precursor—and their transformation in the preform while heated to 1250 °C under constant pressing at 10–100 kPa were studied. Analysis of the data obtained showed the organomorphic SiC preform relative density at a level of 0.3–0.4 to be ensured by self-bonding of the silicon carbide preform, resulting from the fact that during the low-temperature part of pyrolysis, easily polymerizing substances are released leaving a high coke residue, thus cementing the preform. Another possible factor of SiC framework self-bonding is the destruction of the polymer fibers during pyrolysis of various PCS preforms differing in their methylsilane composition (for example, dimethylsilane), where deposition of silicon carbide on the contacting fibers starts as early as at 450–500 °C. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Manufacturing of Fibrous Composites for Engineering Applications)
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24 pages, 2149 KiB  
Review
3D Printing of Dental Prostheses: Current and Emerging Applications
by Fereshte Rezaie, Masoud Farshbaf, Mohammad Dahri, Moein Masjedi, Reza Maleki, Fatemeh Amini, Jonathan Wirth, Keyvan Moharamzadeh, Franz E. Weber and Lobat Tayebi
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 80; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020080 - 15 Feb 2023
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 8288
Abstract
Revolutionary fabrication technologies such as three-dimensional (3D) printing to develop dental structures are expected to replace traditional methods due to their ability to establish constructs with the required mechanical properties and detailed structures. Three-dimensional printing, as an additive manufacturing approach, has the potential [...] Read more.
Revolutionary fabrication technologies such as three-dimensional (3D) printing to develop dental structures are expected to replace traditional methods due to their ability to establish constructs with the required mechanical properties and detailed structures. Three-dimensional printing, as an additive manufacturing approach, has the potential to rapidly fabricate complex dental prostheses by employing a bottom-up strategy in a layer-by-layer fashion. This new technology allows dentists to extend their degree of freedom in selecting, creating, and performing the required treatments. Three-dimensional printing has been narrowly employed in the fabrication of various kinds of prostheses and implants. There is still an on-demand production procedure that offers a reasonable method with superior efficiency to engineer multifaceted dental constructs. This review article aims to cover the most recent applications of 3D printing techniques in the manufacturing of dental prosthetics. More specifically, after describing various 3D printing techniques and their advantages/disadvantages, the applications of 3D printing in dental prostheses are elaborated in various examples in the literature. Different 3D printing techniques have the capability to use different materials, including thermoplastic polymers, ceramics, and metals with distinctive suitability for dental applications, which are discussed in this article. The relevant limitations and challenges that currently limit the efficacy of 3D printing in this field are also reviewed. This review article has employed five major scientific databases, including Google Scholar, PubMed, ScienceDirect, Web of Science, and Scopus, with appropriate keywords to find the most relevant literature in the subject of dental prostheses 3D printing. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Composites: Biomaterials in Dental Fields, Volume II)
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10 pages, 2656 KiB  
Article
The Importance of Water for Purification of Longer Carbon Nanotubes for Nanocomposite Applications
by Vladimir Z. Mordkovich, Maxim A. Khaskov, Veronika A. Naumova, Victor V. De, Boris A. Kulnitskiy and Aida R. Karaeva
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 79; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020079 - 15 Feb 2023
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1542
Abstract
Ultralong carbon nanotubes (UCNTs) are in high demand for nanocomposites applications due to their magnificent physical and chemical properties. UCNTs are synthesized by the catalytic chemical vapor deposition (CCVD) method and, before use as fillers in nanocomposites, should be purified of residual catalyst [...] Read more.
Ultralong carbon nanotubes (UCNTs) are in high demand for nanocomposites applications due to their magnificent physical and chemical properties. UCNTs are synthesized by the catalytic chemical vapor deposition (CCVD) method and, before use as fillers in nanocomposites, should be purified of residual catalyst and non-CNT particles without significant destruction or scissoring of the UCNT. This study investigates the role of water vapor for purification of UCNTs from iron catalyst particles and the importance of water assistance in this process is confirmed. It was shown that wet air treatment of products of UCNTs CCVD synthesis under mild conditions can be used to sufficiently decrease residual iron catalyst content without significant carbon losses in comparison to the results obtained with dry air, while the residual iron content was shown to significantly influence the subsequent oxidation of different forms of carbons, including UCNTs. The increasing of D/G ratio of Raman spectra after wet air treatment of products of UCNTs CCVD synthesis makes it possible to conclude that iron catalyst particles transform into iron oxides and hydroxides that caused inner structural strains and destruction of carbon shells, improving removal of the catalyst particles by subsequent acid treatment. UCNTs purification with water assistance can be used to develop economically and ecologically friendly methods for obtaining fillers for nanocomposites of different applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Nanocomposites)
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10 pages, 2939 KiB  
Article
Tension and Impact Analysis of Tungsten Inert Gas Welded Al6061-SiC Composite
by P. K. Jayashree, Sathyashankara Sharma, Sourabh Kumar, Bhagyalaxmi, Mithesh Bangera and Ritesh Bhat
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 78; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020078 - 14 Feb 2023
Viewed by 1477
Abstract
An aluminum 6061 (Al6061) metal matrix composite (MMC) reinforced with silicon carbide was prepared by stir casting. Specimens of the required dimensions were welded using the tungsten inert gas (TIG) method. ER5356 (Al-5%Mg) was chosen as the appropriate filler material for TIG welding. [...] Read more.
An aluminum 6061 (Al6061) metal matrix composite (MMC) reinforced with silicon carbide was prepared by stir casting. Specimens of the required dimensions were welded using the tungsten inert gas (TIG) method. ER5356 (Al-5%Mg) was chosen as the appropriate filler material for TIG welding. The input current parameter was varied (150, 170 and 200nA) while maintaining the other welding parameters at constant values. An assessment of the mechanical (tensile and impact strength) and microstructure properties of the TIG-welded Al6061 MMC with 6 wt. % silicon carbide particles was accomplished. An 8.27% improvement was observed in ultimate tensile strength (UTS) for the 150 A TIG-welded sample. UTS and elasticity decreased linearly with an increase in welding current but exhibited higher values than in non-welded specimens. The microstructural analysis of the welded MMCs showed a mixed mode of failure, with equiaxial dimples being dominant in lower-weld-current specimens. Compared to non-welded specimens, a 40% increase in impact strength was observed for the 150 A TIG-welded specimens, which decreased with an increase in the welding current value. SEM analysis revealed ductile striations and continuous river patterns, resulting in mixed failure. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Polymeric Composites and Hybrid Materials)
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23 pages, 5609 KiB  
Review
Progressive Review of Functional Nanomaterials-Based Polymer Nanocomposites for Efficient EMI Shielding
by Prashanth Kallambadi Sadashivappa, Revathi Venkatachalam, Ramyakrishna Pothu, Rajender Boddula, Prasun Banerjee, Ramachandra Naik, Ahmed Bahgat Radwan and Noora Al-Qahtani
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 77; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020077 - 13 Feb 2023
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2385
Abstract
Nanomaterials have assumed an imperative part in the advancement of human evolution and are more intertwined in our thinking and application. Contrary to the conventional micron-filled composites, the unique nanofillers often modify the properties of the polymer matrix at the same time, bestowing [...] Read more.
Nanomaterials have assumed an imperative part in the advancement of human evolution and are more intertwined in our thinking and application. Contrary to the conventional micron-filled composites, the unique nanofillers often modify the properties of the polymer matrix at the same time, bestowing new functionality because of their chemical composition and their nano dimensions. The unprecedented technological revolution is driving people to adapt to miniaturized electronic gadgets. The sources of electromagnetic fields are ubiquitous in a tech-driven society. The COVID-19 pandemic has escalated the proliferation of electromagnetic interference as the world embraced remote working and content delivery over mobile communication devices. While EMI shielding is performed using the combination of reflection, absorption, and electrical and magnetic properties, under certain considerations, the dominant nature of any one of the properties may be required. The miniaturization of electronic gadgets coupled with wireless technologies is driving us to search for alternate lightweight EMI shielding materials with improved functionalities relative to conventional metals. Polymer nanocomposites have emerged as functional materials with versatile properties for EMI shielding. This paper reviews nanomaterials-based polymer nanocomposites for EMI shielding applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electromagnetic Interference (EMI) Shielding Composites)
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19 pages, 4682 KiB  
Article
Improved Fly Ash Based Structural Foam Concrete with Polypropylene Fiber
by Alexey N. Beskopylny, Evgenii M. Shcherban’, Sergey A. Stel’makh, Levon R. Mailyan, Besarion Meskhi, Valery Varavka, Andrei Chernil’nik and Anastasia Pogrebnyak
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 76; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020076 - 12 Feb 2023
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1741
Abstract
The direction of construction science that is associated with the development of the theory and practice of creating a new generation of foam concrete is particularly interesting and relevant. The development of improved structural foam concrete using polypropylene fiber and industrial waste, namely [...] Read more.
The direction of construction science that is associated with the development of the theory and practice of creating a new generation of foam concrete is particularly interesting and relevant. The development of improved structural foam concrete using polypropylene fiber and industrial waste, namely fly ash (FA), is prompted by the existing environmental threat posed by FA; this threat is a result of the operation of the fuel energy industry, as well as the possibility of using foam concrete not only as thermal insulation, but as the main material for load-bearing structures that have a certain level of responsibility. The aim of this work was to create and optimize the recipe technological parameters to produce non-autoclaved fiber foam concrete (FFC) using FA as a component. The study used standardized methods for assessing the properties of FFC, and the method of optical microscopy to analyze the structural characteristics of the material. It has been revealed that the replacement of cement with FA in an amount of 10% to 40% helps to reduce the dry density (DD) of FFC. The lowest DD was recorded for samples with 40% FA. The best results for the compressive strength (CS) and flexural strength (FS) were recorded for FFC samples with 10% FA instead of cement. The increase in CS was 12%, and the increase in FS was 23%. The best thermal insulation properties of FFC, and in terms of resistance to freezing and thawing, were recorded in samples with a 10% replacement of cement with FA. The maximum decrease in thermal conductivity was 14%. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Polymer Composites and Fibers)
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20 pages, 19575 KiB  
Article
Characterisation of Composite Materials for Wind Turbines Using Frequency Modulated Continuous Wave Sensing
by Wenshuo Tang, Jamie Blanche, Daniel Mitchell, Samuel Harper and David Flynn
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 75; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020075 - 10 Feb 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2039
Abstract
Wind turbine blades (WTBs) are critical sub-systems consisting of composite multi-layer material structures. WTB inspection is a complex and labour intensive process, and failure of it can lead to substantial energy and economic losses to asset owners. In this paper, we proposed a [...] Read more.
Wind turbine blades (WTBs) are critical sub-systems consisting of composite multi-layer material structures. WTB inspection is a complex and labour intensive process, and failure of it can lead to substantial energy and economic losses to asset owners. In this paper, we proposed a novel non-destructive evaluation method for blade composite materials, which employs Frequency Modulated Continuous Wave (FMCW) radar, robotics and machine learning (ML) analytics. We show that using FMCW raster scan data, our ML algorithms (SVM, BP, Decision Tree and Naïve Bayes) can distinguish different types of composite materials with accuracy of over 97.5%. The best performance is achieved by SVM algorithms, with 94.3% accuracy. Furthermore, the proposed method can also achieve solid results for detecting surface defect: interlaminar porosity with 80% accuracy overall. In particular, the SVM classifier shows highest accuracy of 92.5% to 98.9%. We also show the ability to detect air voids of 1mm differences within the composite material WT structure with 94.1% accuracy performance using SVM, and 84.5% using Naïve Bayes. Lastly, we create a digital twin of the physical composite sample to support the integration and qualitative analysis of the FMCW data with respect to composite sample characteristics. The proposed method explores a new sensing modality for non-contact surface and subsurface for composite materials, and offer insights for developing alternative, more cost-effective inspection and maintenance regimes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Machine Learning in Composites)
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12 pages, 4138 KiB  
Article
Inductive Thermal Effect on Thermoplastic Nanocomposites with Magnetic Nanoparticles for Induced-Healing, Bonding and Debonding On-Demand Applications
by Maria Kanidi, Niki Loura, Anna Frengkou, Tatjana Kosanovic Milickovic, Aikaterini-Flora Trompeta and Costas Charitidis
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 74; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020074 - 09 Feb 2023
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1858
Abstract
In this study, the heating capacity of nanocomposite materials enhanced with magnetic nanoparticles was investigated through induction heating. Thermoplastic (TP) matrices of polypropylene (PP), thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU), polyamide (PA12), and polyetherketoneketone (PEKK) were compounded with 2.5–10 wt.% iron oxide-based magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs) using [...] Read more.
In this study, the heating capacity of nanocomposite materials enhanced with magnetic nanoparticles was investigated through induction heating. Thermoplastic (TP) matrices of polypropylene (PP), thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU), polyamide (PA12), and polyetherketoneketone (PEKK) were compounded with 2.5–10 wt.% iron oxide-based magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs) using a twin-screw extrusion system. Disk-shape specimens were prepared by 3D printing and injection molding. The heating capacity was examined as a function of exposure time, frequency, and power using a radio frequency (RF) generator with a solenoid inductor coil. All nanocomposite materials presented a temperature increase proportional to the MNPs’ concentration as a function of the exposure time in the magnetic field. The nanocomposites with a higher concentration of MNPs presented a rapid increase in temperature, resulting in polymer matrix melting in most of the trials. The operational parameters of the RF generator, such as the input power and the frequency, significantly affect the heating capacity of the specimens, higher input power, and higher frequencies and promote the rapid increase in temperature for all assessed nanocomposites, enabling induced-healing and bonding/debonding on-demand applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Multifunctional Composite Structures)
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20 pages, 6990 KiB  
Article
Impact Resistance Enhancement of Sustainable Geopolymer Composites Using High Volume Tile Ceramic Wastes
by Ghasan Fahim Huseien, Ziyad Kubba, Akram M. Mhaya, Noshaba Hassan Malik and Jahangir Mirza
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 73; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020073 - 09 Feb 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1468
Abstract
The need for sustainable concrete with low carbon dioxide emissions and exceptional performance has recently increased in the building industry. Many distinct types of industrial byproducts and ecologically safe wastes have shown promise as ingredients for this kind of concrete. Meanwhile, as industrialization [...] Read more.
The need for sustainable concrete with low carbon dioxide emissions and exceptional performance has recently increased in the building industry. Many distinct types of industrial byproducts and ecologically safe wastes have shown promise as ingredients for this kind of concrete. Meanwhile, as industrialization and lifestyle modernization continue to rise, ceramic waste becomes an increasingly serious threat to the natural environment. It is well known that free cement binder that incorporates tile ceramic wastes (TCWs) can significantly improve the material’s sustainability. We used this information to create a variety of geopolymer mortars by mixing TCWs with varied proportions of ground blast furnace slag (GBFS) and fly ash (FA). Analytical techniques were used to evaluate the mechanical properties and impact resistance (IR) of each designed mixture. TCWs were substituted for binders at percentages between 50 and 70 percent, and the resultant mixes were strong enough for real-world usage. Evidence suggests that the IR and ductility of the proposed mortars might be greatly improved by the addition of TCWs to a geopolymer matrix. It was found that there is a trend for both initial and failure impact energy to increase with increasing TCWs and FA content in the matrix. The results show that the raising of TCWs from 0% to 50, 60 and 70% significantly led to an increase in the failure impact energy from 397.3 J to 456.8, 496.6 and 595.9 J, respectively. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Progress in Polymer Composites, Volume II)
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15 pages, 3111 KiB  
Review
Influence of Natural Fiber Content on the Frictional Material of Brake Pads—A Review
by Zeina Ammar, Hamdy Ibrahim, Mahmoud Adly, Ioannis Sarris and Sherif Mehanny
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 72; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020072 - 09 Feb 2023
Cited by 18 | Viewed by 2676
Abstract
Research into the use of eco-friendly materials, such as natural fibers, in brake pads has gained momentum in the last few decades. This can be attributed to the potential of natural fibers to replace traditional materials in tribological applications such as braking pads. [...] Read more.
Research into the use of eco-friendly materials, such as natural fibers, in brake pads has gained momentum in the last few decades. This can be attributed to the potential of natural fibers to replace traditional materials in tribological applications such as braking pads. The harmful impact of the commonly-used brake pad materials, such as metal and mineral fibers, on human health and the environment necessitates the development of eco-friendly alternatives. Natural fibers, such as banana peels, palm kernels, and palm slag, have been shown to be a viable replacement for traditional brake pad materials. This article reviews the literature on the use of different natural fibers in brake pads and their impact on the physical, mechanical, and tribological properties. Trends for density, porosity, hardness, coefficient of friction (COF), and wear rate are observed. The recommended formulations to yield the optimum properties, according to the perspective of several studies, are showcased. In addition, the effect of asbestos material and natural fibers on life-cycle assessment and CO2 emission is highlighted. This article is an attempt to provide a foundation for future researchers in the field of natural fiber-reinforced composites for brake pad applications. Full article
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14 pages, 7726 KiB  
Article
Formation of Composite Coatings during Detonation Spraying of Cr3C2
by Igor S. Batraev, Vladimir Yu. Ulianitsky, Alexandr A. Shtertser, Dina V. Dudina and Arina V. Ukhina
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 71; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020071 - 08 Feb 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1119
Abstract
In the current practice of applying carbide-based coatings by thermal spraying, the starting material usually contains a metal binder. However, it is important to study the possibility of spraying binder-free carbides, since the metal components usually reduce the operating temperature and corrosion resistance [...] Read more.
In the current practice of applying carbide-based coatings by thermal spraying, the starting material usually contains a metal binder. However, it is important to study the possibility of spraying binder-free carbides, since the metal components usually reduce the operating temperature and corrosion resistance of cermet coatings. In this work, a powder of chromium carbide, Cr3C2, was sprayed using a CCDS2000 detonation gun. Acetylene–oxygen mixtures C2H2 + kO2 with k varying from 0.8 to 3.0 were used as an energetic material. Due to chemical reactions between Cr3C2 and the detonation products, the coatings were of composite nature (multi-phase materials) with a composition depending on k. At k values in the range from 0.8 to 1.1, along with Cr3C2, the coatings contained chromium carbonitride Cr3N0.4C1.6. In the k range from 1.3 to 2.0, Cr7C3 and Cr were the main components of the coatings. As k was increased to 3.0, along with Cr7C3 and Cr, the CrO and Cr2O3 oxides formed in the coatings. The mechanical properties and wear resistance of the coatings were found to depend on their phase compositions. Coatings produced by detonation spraying of Cr3C2 powder may be useful for increasing the corrosion resistance of machine parts to mineral acids and high-temperature oxidation resistance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Composites Manufacturing and Processing)
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19 pages, 2622 KiB  
Article
The Effect of Metals of the 2nd and 12th Groups on the Productivity and Selectivity of Cumene Oxidation—The First Stage of the Technological Chain for the Production of Polymer Composites
by Nikolai V. Ulitin, Daria A. Shiyan, Yana L. Lyulinskaya, Nikolay A. Novikov, Konstantin A. Tereshchenko, Natalia M. Nurullina, Marina N. Denisova, Kharlampii E. Kharlampidi and Yaroslav O. Mezhuev
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 70; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020070 - 08 Feb 2023
Viewed by 1362
Abstract
The effect of the process temperature and the initial concentration of Mg, Ca, Sr, Ba, Zn, Cd, and Hg 2-ethylhexanoates as catalysts on the productivity and selectivity of the oxidation stage of cumene is studied in the technological chain for the production of [...] Read more.
The effect of the process temperature and the initial concentration of Mg, Ca, Sr, Ba, Zn, Cd, and Hg 2-ethylhexanoates as catalysts on the productivity and selectivity of the oxidation stage of cumene is studied in the technological chain for the production of polymer composites from cumene; “production of phenol by cumene method (stage 1 is cumene oxidation to cumene hydroperoxide, stage 2 is decomposition of cumene hydroperoxide into phenol and acetone) → production of precursors from phenol → production of polymers from precursors → production of composites from polymers”. A criterion has been introduced that reflects the productivity of cumene oxidation at the moment of reaching the maximum concentration of cumene hydroperoxide, which takes into account the cumene conversion and selectivity achieved in this case in the shortest possible time using the selectivity comparable with the selectivity of a non-catalytic process. It has been shown that the achievement of the maximum value of this criterion, among all the considered catalysts, is ensured by Mg 2-ethylhexanoate at its relatively low initial concentration (1 mmol/L) under conditions of moderately-high process temperatures (393–413 K). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Progress in Polymer Composites, Volume II)
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19 pages, 14424 KiB  
Article
Cyclic Thermal Shock Response of Zirconia/304 Stainless Steel Functionally Graded Materials Fabricated by Centrifugal Slurry Methods
by Hideaki Tsukamoto
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 69; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020069 - 07 Feb 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 945
Abstract
Functionally graded materials (FGMs) are multi-phase composites with gradual spatial variations of constituents. The compositional transitions in the FGMs are classified into two manners such as continuous gradient manners and stepwise manners. In this study, zirconia (ZrO2)/ 304 stainless steel (SUS304) [...] Read more.
Functionally graded materials (FGMs) are multi-phase composites with gradual spatial variations of constituents. The compositional transitions in the FGMs are classified into two manners such as continuous gradient manners and stepwise manners. In this study, zirconia (ZrO2)/ 304 stainless steel (SUS304) FGMs with continuous gradient manners were fabricated by a combination of centrifugal slurry methods and spark plasma sintering (SPS). A variety of continuous gradient patterns were achieved by controlling the amount of dispersant such as ammonium polycarboxylic acid (PCA) in the slurry. With an increase in the amount of PCA, the gradient patterns in the FGMs changed from ceramic (ZrO2)-rich to metal (SUS304)-rich ones. According to Stokes sedimentation velocity simulations, the sedimentation velocity of SUS304 particles is higher than that of ZrO2 particles. With an increasing amount of PCA, the sedimentation velocity of the particles decreases. Cyclic thermal shock test results demonstrated that FGMs with metal (SUS304)-rich continuous gradient patterns showed the highest resistance among the samples of FGMs, 5-layered materials and ZrO2 single materials. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Composites Manufacturing and Processing)
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15 pages, 5479 KiB  
Article
Effect of Fiber Side-Feeding on Various Properties of Nickel-Coated Carbon-Fiber-Reinforced Polyamide 6 Composites Prepared by a Twin-Screw Extrusion Process
by Naeun Jeong and Donghwan Cho
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 68; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020068 - 07 Feb 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1026
Abstract
In the present study, how side-feeding of NiCF during twin-screw extrusion processing influences the fiber aspect ratio and thermal, mechanical, electrical, and electromagnetic properties of nickel-coated carbon fiber (NiCF)-reinforced polyamide 6 (PA6) composites was explored. For this, the fiber length distribution, thermal stability, [...] Read more.
In the present study, how side-feeding of NiCF during twin-screw extrusion processing influences the fiber aspect ratio and thermal, mechanical, electrical, and electromagnetic properties of nickel-coated carbon fiber (NiCF)-reinforced polyamide 6 (PA6) composites was explored. For this, the fiber length distribution, thermal stability, heat deflection temperature, dynamic mechanical property, tensile, flexural, electrical resistivity, and electromagnetic interference shielding effectiveness (EMI SE) properties of NiCF/PA6 composites were extensively investigated. Chopped NiCF was regularly fed via either a main feeder or a side feeder and NiCF/PA6 pellets with different fiber-feeding pathways were prepared. The side-feeding effect of NiCF on the fiber length distribution and the composite properties was studied. The thermal stability, heat deflection temperature, storage modulus, tensile, flexural, and surface resistivity, and EMI SE properties of the NiCF/PA6 composites strongly depended not only on the NiCF content but also on the feeding method (main-feeding or side-feeding) upon extrusion processing, indicating that the fiber length distribution relevant to the fiber aspect ratio was critically important to enhance the composites’ properties. As a result, the NiCF/PA6 composites produced via side-feeding of NiCF exhibited an NiCF distribution longer than that produced via main-feeding, leading to enhancement of the thermal stability, heat deflection temperature, storage modulus, tensile, flexural, and EMI SE properties, strongly depending on the NiCF content. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Advanced Carbon Fiber Reinforced Composite Materials)
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22 pages, 3408 KiB  
Review
A Review on Concrete Composites Modified with Nanoparticles
by Ghasan Fahim Huseien
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 67; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020067 - 07 Feb 2023
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 4226
Abstract
Recently, various nanomaterials have extensively been used to achieve sustainability goals in the construction sector. Thus, this paper presents a state-of-the-art review involving the uses of different nanomaterials for production of high-performance cementitious, geopolymer, and alkali-activated concrete composites. The effects of nanomaterials on [...] Read more.
Recently, various nanomaterials have extensively been used to achieve sustainability goals in the construction sector. Thus, this paper presents a state-of-the-art review involving the uses of different nanomaterials for production of high-performance cementitious, geopolymer, and alkali-activated concrete composites. The effects of nanomaterials on the fresh properties, mechanical properties, and durability of diverse nanoparticle-modified concrete composites are analyzed. The past developments, recent trends, environmental impact, sustainability, notable benefits, and demerits of various nanomaterial-based concrete production are emphasized. It is demonstrated that nanomaterials including SiO2, Al2O3, TiO2, and Fe2O3, etc., can be used effectively to enhance the microstructures and mechanical characteristics (such as compressive strength, flexural, and splitting tensile strengths) of the modified concrete composites, thus improving their anti-erosion, anti-chloride penetration, and other durability traits. In short, this communication may provide deep insight into the role of diverse nanoparticle inclusion in concrete composites to improve their overall attributes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Nanocomposites)
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13 pages, 19409 KiB  
Article
Micro-Scale Model of rCF/PA6 Spun Yarn Composite
by Tobias Georg Lang, Mir Mohammad Badrul Hasan, Anwar Abdkader, Chokri Cherif and Thomas Gereke
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 66; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020066 - 06 Feb 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1298
Abstract
Recycling carbon fibers (rCF) for reuse is one approach to improve the sustainability of CFRP. However, until now, recycled carbon fiber plastics (rCFRP) had limited composite properties due to the microgeometry of the fibers, which made it difficult to use in load-bearing components. [...] Read more.
Recycling carbon fibers (rCF) for reuse is one approach to improve the sustainability of CFRP. However, until now, recycled carbon fiber plastics (rCFRP) had limited composite properties due to the microgeometry of the fibers, which made it difficult to use in load-bearing components. The production of hybrid yarns from rCF and PA6 fibers allows the fibers to be aligned. The geometric properties of the yarn and the individual fibers influence the mechanical properties of the composite. An approach for the modeling and simulation of hybrid yarns consisting of recycled carbon fibers and thermoplastic fibers is presented. The yarn unit cell geometry is modeled in the form of a stochastic fiber network. The fiber trajectory is modeled in form of helical curves using the idealized yarn model of Hearle et al. The variability in the fiber geometry (e.g., length) is included in form of statistical distributions. An additional compaction step ensures a realistic composite geometry. The created model is validated geometrically and by comparison with tensile tests of manufactured composites. With the validated model, multiple parameter studies investigating the influence of fiber and yarn geometry are carried out. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Characterization and Modelling of Composites, Volume III)
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20 pages, 6829 KiB  
Article
Manufacture and Characterization of Cola Lépidota Reinforcements for Composite Applications
by Rémy Legrand Ndoumou, Damien Soulat, Ahmad Rashed Labanieh, Manuela Ferreira, Lucien Meva’a and Jean Atangana Ateba
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 65; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020065 - 06 Feb 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 984
Abstract
This study represents the first works on the manufacture of reinforcements for composite applications such as yarns and fabrics using a tropical fiber extracted from the bast of the Cola Lepidota (CL) plant. Different types of products were produced, including twisted and untwisted [...] Read more.
This study represents the first works on the manufacture of reinforcements for composite applications such as yarns and fabrics using a tropical fiber extracted from the bast of the Cola Lepidota (CL) plant. Different types of products were produced, including twisted and untwisted yarns and woven and quasi-unidirectional fabrics to manufacture composite samples. At each scale, experimental characterizations of textile and mechanical properties were carried out; these properties are compared to those given in the literature concerning natural fiber materials. The results show that the tenacity of twisted and untwisted CL yarns is higher than that of similar products based on flax fibers, which is an important result for the weaveability of these rovings. At the fabric scale, the quasi-unidirectional architecture reduces waviness and shows promising tensile properties compared to woven fabrics. On the scale of composites, these developments made it possible to achieve properties in tensile comparable, particularly in stiffness, to those achieved by composites based on natural fibers. The objectives of this paper are to highlight the advantages and drawbacks of different types of reinforcements, and to present the first characterization of the properties of products based on CL fibers. Full article
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25 pages, 5018 KiB  
Review
Recent Developments in Noble Metal-Free Catalysts for a Photocatalytic Water Splitting Process—A Review
by Ama Dahanayake, Chamila A. Gunathilake, Achala Pallegedara and Piumal Jayasinghe
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 64; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020064 - 06 Feb 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2012
Abstract
Sustainable hydrogen production is an essential prerequisite of a future hydrogen economy. Compared to other processes such as renewable energy-driven water electrolysis and photoelectrochemical water splitting, direct solar to hydrogen conversion through photocatalytic water splitting gives the simplest system for sustainable hydrogen production. [...] Read more.
Sustainable hydrogen production is an essential prerequisite of a future hydrogen economy. Compared to other processes such as renewable energy-driven water electrolysis and photoelectrochemical water splitting, direct solar to hydrogen conversion through photocatalytic water splitting gives the simplest system for sustainable hydrogen production. Among the many factors to be considered such as the availability of solar radiation, gas collection mechanism and other infrastructure, a highly active noble metal-free photocatalyst is essential to make the water splitting process more energy efficient and economical. This review highlights the mechanism and factors hindering the efficiency of catalysts in photocatalytic water splitting, while discussing recent research efforts towards the development of highly efficient, noble metal-free photocatalysts, especially at the nanoscale, and their catalytic properties for water splitting. Mainly, catalysts consisting of TiO2, Z-schemed catalytic systems and naval computational approaches are discussed here. Moreover, techniques to enhance their catalytic activities and the developments required for the implementation of these photocatalytic systems at a commercial scale are further emphasized in the discussion section. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers in Journal of Composites Science in 2023)
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13 pages, 3853 KiB  
Article
Self-Sensing Eco-Earth Composite with Carbon Microfibers for Sustainable Smart Buildings
by Hasan Borke Birgin, Antonella D’Alessandro, Andrea Meoni and Filippo Ubertini
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 63; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020063 - 06 Feb 2023
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1712
Abstract
This paper proposes a new sustainable earth–cement building composite with multifunctional sensing features and investigates its properties through an experimental campaign. Earth and cement are proportioned as 2/7 in volume, while carbon microfibers are added in various amounts to achieve piezoresistivity, ranging from [...] Read more.
This paper proposes a new sustainable earth–cement building composite with multifunctional sensing features and investigates its properties through an experimental campaign. Earth and cement are proportioned as 2/7 in volume, while carbon microfibers are added in various amounts to achieve piezoresistivity, ranging from 0 to 1% with respect to the weight of the binder (i.e., earth + cement). The proposed material couples the construction performance with self-sensing properties in order to monitor the structural performance during the servile life of the building. The use of earth in the partial replacement of cement reduces the environmental footprint of the material while keeping sufficient mechanical properties, at least for applications that do not require a large load-bearing capacity (e.g., for plasters or for low-rise constructions). This paper analyzes the electrical and sensing behavior of cubic and beam samples through electrical and electromechanical tests. The results show that the samples with a filler percentage near the percolation zone, ranged between 0.025 and 0.25%, exhibit the best performance. From the cyclical compressive tests and linear developed models, it could be deduced that the filler content of 0.05% of carbon fibers, with respect to the binder weight, represents the best-performing smart composite for further investigation at higher scales. As demonstrated, the selected mix generated clear strain-sensing electrical signals, reaching gauge factors over 100. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Carbon Fiber Composites, Volume II)
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16 pages, 3372 KiB  
Article
Taguchi Method Optimization of Water Absorption Behavior by Wheat Straw-Basalt Hybrid Brake Pad Composite
by Worku Mamuye Yilma, Balkeshwar Singh, Getinet Asrat and Nazia Hossain
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 62; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020062 - 06 Feb 2023
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1676
Abstract
The application of biomass-derived composite material is in high demand worldwide in various commercial sectors, including automotive, due to its durable, cost-effective, and environment-friendly characteristics. However, one of the limiting factors of biomass-based composites is its higher water absorption capacity compared to commercial [...] Read more.
The application of biomass-derived composite material is in high demand worldwide in various commercial sectors, including automotive, due to its durable, cost-effective, and environment-friendly characteristics. However, one of the limiting factors of biomass-based composites is its higher water absorption capacity compared to commercial synthetic composites. Therefore, this study aimed to optimize the water absorption capacity of biomass-based, wheat straw fiber-basalt hybrid composite brake pad using the Taguchi method by considering the particle size and volume % of the composite compositions. The composite synthesized in this study carried two variations of particle sizes of basalt, wheat straw, steel, river sand, and graphite, as well as two-volume percentages of epoxy resin for optimization. All composites were molded using a compression molding process at compressive pressure of 6 MPa for 2 h curing in a forced convection oven at 100 °C. Water absorption capacity has been determined according to ASTM D570. The wheat straw fiber has been chemically treated with 5 wt.% of sodium hydroxide (NaOH) to remove the impurities, lignin, and hemicellulose and increase the surface area of the fiber, resulting in a larger area of contact between the fiber and the matrix. Elemental analysis, crystallinity, morphology, and mechanical strength of wheat straw fiber-based composites have been determined by XRD, SEM, and compression tests, respectively. The statistical method, analysis of variance (ANOVA), was implemented for Taguchi optimization of the composite compositions. The maximum compressive strength and minimum and maximum water absorption capacity of composites were obtained as 77 MPa, 3.55%, and 26.86%, respectively. From the optimum setting of the confirmation experiment, the optimal water absorption value of 5.718% has been obtained. The optimum particle size of the composite compositions was 1 mm basalt particle, 0.5 mm wheat straw fiber, 1 mm steel particle, 1 mm river sand, 0.5 mm graphite dust particle, and 30 vol% epoxy resin by Taguchi method. The parameter impact of Taguchi ranking on water absorption capacity presented the maximum improvement of water absorption, 10.47%, with river sand particle size. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biocomposites)
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19 pages, 5790 KiB  
Article
Tailoring Variations in the Microstructures, Linear/Nonlinear Optical, and Mechanical Properties of Dysprosium-Oxide-Reinforced Borate Glasses
by Ahmed M. Henaish, Osama M. Hemeda, Enas A. Arrasheed, Rizk M. Shalaby, Ahmed R. Ghazy, Ilya A. Weinstein, Moustafa A. Darwish, Ekaterina L. Trukhanova, Alex V. Trukhanov, Sergei V. Trukhanov, Ahmed F. Al-Hossainy and Nermin A. Abdelhakim
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 61; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020061 - 06 Feb 2023
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1450
Abstract
Hybrid dysprosium-doped borate glassy samples [B-Gly/Dy]HDG (Borate Glass/Dysprosium)Hybrid Doped Glass were prepared in this study via the melt-quenching method. Its linear/nonlinear optical, photoluminescence, hardness indentation, and micro-creep properties were analyzed. The amorphous structure for all the prepared samples was confirmed from [...] Read more.
Hybrid dysprosium-doped borate glassy samples [B-Gly/Dy]HDG (Borate Glass/Dysprosium)Hybrid Doped Glass were prepared in this study via the melt-quenching method. Its linear/nonlinear optical, photoluminescence, hardness indentation, and micro-creep properties were analyzed. The amorphous structure for all the prepared samples was confirmed from the XRD patterns. In addition, density functional theory (DFT), optimized by TD-DFT and Crystal Sleuth, was used to study the structure and crystallinity of the [B-Gly/Dy]HDG as isolated molecules and agreed with the peaks of experimental XRD patterns. Additionally, theoretical lattice types were studied using Polymorph, a content studio software, and orthorhombic Pc21b (29) and triclinic P-1 (2) structures were provided. Both mechanical and optical properties were responses to different concentrations of Dy2O3 in the glassy borate system. It was found that the length of indentation increases by increasing the load time, and the hardness decreases by increasing the load time. The stress exponent value also increased from 4.1 to 6.3. The indentation strain increases by increasing the load time. The direct optical band gap was evaluated using the Davis–Mott relation. Urbach energy and its connection to the disorder degree in materials were studied depending on the Dy2O3 concentration. The acquired optical parameters were also analyzed to determine the nonlinear refractive index as well as the linear and third-order nonlinear optical susceptibility of the investigated glass samples. The photoluminescence emission spectra were recorded, and their attributed transitions were studied. The mechanical studies showed that the hardness values increased by increasing Dy2O3 concentrations from 4160.54 to 5631.58 Mpa. The stress exponent value also increased from 4.1 to 6.3. Therefore, the higher value of stress exponent (S) is more resistant to indentation creep. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Composites Modelling and Characterization)
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17 pages, 1700 KiB  
Article
The Effect of Ca, Sr, and Ba Chloride Complexes with Dibenzo-18-Crown-6 Ether as Catalysts on the Process Criteria for the Efficiency of Cumene Oxidation (the First Stage in the Chain of Polymer Composite Production)
by Nikolai V. Ulitin, Nikolay A. Novikov, Yana L. Lyulinskaya, Daria A. Shiyan, Konstantin A. Tereshchenko, Natalia M. Nurullina, Marina N. Denisova, Yaroslav O. Mezhuev and Kharlampii E. Kharlampidi
J. Compos. Sci. 2023, 7(2), 60; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcs7020060 - 06 Feb 2023
Viewed by 1242
Abstract
A study was made on the effect of Ca, Sr, and Ba chloride complexes with dibenzo-18-crown-6 ether as catalysts on the process criteria of the efficiency of industrial cumene oxidation using kinetic modeling. It is the first stage in the process chain of [...] Read more.
A study was made on the effect of Ca, Sr, and Ba chloride complexes with dibenzo-18-crown-6 ether as catalysts on the process criteria of the efficiency of industrial cumene oxidation using kinetic modeling. It is the first stage in the process chain of polymer composite production. The kinetic scheme of the process is made of classical reactions of the radical chain mechanism (reactions of initiation, chain propagation, and chain termination), molecular reactions, reactions of formation of intermediate adducts “component of the reaction mixture—catalyst” and their decomposition, as well as reactions that take into account the specifics of the catalyst used: (1) formation of planar catalyst complexes with various substances; (2) formation of acetophenone along the catalytic path; (3) hydration of the intermediate adduct “α-methylstyrene—catalyst” to the required alcohol. It is shown that the kinetic model fully reproduces the experimental time dependencies of the cumene hydroperoxide concentration in the cumene oxidation and cumene hydroperoxide decomposition. Using the kinetic model, computational experiments were carried out, as a result of which the following conclusions were made: (1) among the considered catalysts, the complex of Sr chloride with dibenzo-18-crown-6 ether should be recognized as the best, provided that it is used at temperatures of 393–413 K and an initial concentration < 2 mmol/L; (2) to ensure selectivity comparable to the selectivity of a non-catalytic process, it is necessary to conduct the catalytic process at a lowest possible initial concentration of any of the considered catalysts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Progress in Polymer Composites, Volume II)
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