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Special Issue "Aerogels: Synthesis, Characterization and Application"

A special issue of Materials (ISSN 1996-1944).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 October 2018

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Dr. Barbara Milow

Institute of Materials Research, German Aerospace Center, Cologne, Germany
Website | E-Mail
Interests: aerogels and aerogel based composites development for applications, defined open porous nanostructured materials, multi-functionality and properties adjustment

Special Issue Information

tDear Colleagues and Friends,

The Special Issue, “Aerogels – Synthesis, Characterization and Application”, will focus on the specific development of aerogels and aerogel based composites for advanced applications. Due to the outstanding combination of properties an awesome variety of applications using aerogels and aerogel based composites is possible. Applications requiring materials for thermal super insulation, light weight construction, electrochemical topics, acoustic damping, adsorption agents, medical issues, as well as cosmetics and personal care products to mention some are under development. All of them are dealing with special combinations of properties which are meanly defined by the open porous nanostructured network and the great variety of chemical origin of the aerogels. The requirements can be matched by a careful setting up, starting with lab-scale experiments followed by a smooth scaling-up and leading to industrial scale production in the near future. The idea of the special issue is to collect the knowledge of the correlation between the necessities of taking care on chemical precursors and reaction conditions during synthesis and suitable drying methods as well as further functionalization to meet the required combination of properties. In this context we would like to invite you to contribute to this special issue. Both original papers and reviews dealing with synthesis, characterization and prospective applications as well as numerical simulations on the design and functionality of aerogels and aerogel based composites are welcome.

Dr. Barbara Milow
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Materials is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Aerogel
  • Aerogel composite
  • sol-gel process
  • pre- or post-functionalization
  • thermal conductivity
  • mechanical strength
  • process parameter
  • porosity
  • specific surface, particle diameter, pore size, pore volume
  • open porous nanostructured network
  • adsorption
  • light weight
  • supercritical drying
  • numerical simulation
  • applications
  • safety
  • health care
  • fire resistance
  • process technology (including measurement and control equipment)
  • upscaling
  • social / future challenges

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle Correlating Synthesis Parameters to Morphological Entities: Predictive Modeling of Biopolymer Aerogels
Materials 2018, 11(9), 1670; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11091670
Received: 6 August 2018 / Revised: 28 August 2018 / Accepted: 3 September 2018 / Published: 9 September 2018
PDF Full-text (15784 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
In the past decade, biopolymer aerogels have gained significant research attention due to their typical properties, such as low density and thermal insulation, which are reinforced with excellent biocompatibility, biodegradability, and ease of functionalization. Mechanical properties of these aerogels play an important role
[...] Read more.
In the past decade, biopolymer aerogels have gained significant research attention due to their typical properties, such as low density and thermal insulation, which are reinforced with excellent biocompatibility, biodegradability, and ease of functionalization. Mechanical properties of these aerogels play an important role in several applications and should be evaluated based on synthesis parameters. To this end, preparation and characterization of polysaccharide-based aerogels, such as pectin, cellulose and k-carrageenan, is first discussed. An interrelationship between their synthesis parameters and morphological entities is established. Such aerogels are usually characterized by a cellular morphology, and under compression undergo large deformations. Therefore, a nonlinear constitutive model is proposed based on large deflections in microcell walls of the aerogel network. Different sizes of the microcells within the network are identified via nitrogen desorption isotherms. Damage is initiated upon pore collapse, which is shown to result from the failure of the microcell wall fibrils. Finally, the model predictions are validated against experimental data of pectin, cellulose, and k-carrageenan aerogels. Given the micromechanical nature of the model, a clear correlation—qualitative and quantitative—between synthesis parameters and the model parameters is also substantiated. The proposed model is shown to be useful in tailoring the mechanical properties of biopolymer aerogels subject to changes in synthesis parameters. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aerogels: Synthesis, Characterization and Application)
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Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Polysaccharide-Based Aerogel Bead Production via Jet Cutting Method
Materials 2018, 11(8), 1287; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11081287
Received: 29 June 2018 / Revised: 23 July 2018 / Accepted: 23 July 2018 / Published: 25 July 2018
PDF Full-text (26145 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The aim of this work is to develop a method to produce spherical biopolymer-based aerogel particles, which is capable for scale-up in the future. Therefore, the jet cutting method is suggested. Amidated pectin, sodium alginate, and chitosan are used as a precursor (a
[...] Read more.
The aim of this work is to develop a method to produce spherical biopolymer-based aerogel particles, which is capable for scale-up in the future. Therefore, the jet cutting method is suggested. Amidated pectin, sodium alginate, and chitosan are used as a precursor (a 1–3 wt. % solution) for particle production via jet cutting. Gelation is realized via two methods: the internal setting method (using calcium carbonate particles as cross-linkers and citric and acidic acid for pH adjustment) and the diffusion method (in calcium chloride solutions). Gel particles are subjected to solvent exchange to ethanol and consequent supercritical drying with CO2. Spherical aerogel particles with narrow particle size distributions in the range of 400 to 1500 µm and a specific surface area of around 500 m2/g are produced. Overall, it can be concluded that the jet cutting method is suitable for aerogel particle production, although the shape of the particles is not perfectly spherical in all cases. However, parameter adjustment might lead to even better shaped particles in further work. Moreover, the biopolymer-based aerogel particles synthesized in this study are tested as humidity absorbers in drying units for home appliances, particularly for dishwashers. It has been shown that for several cycles of absorption and desorption of humidity, aerogel particles are stable with an absorption capacity of around 20 wt. %. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aerogels: Synthesis, Characterization and Application)
Figures

Graphical abstract

Open AccessArticle Poly(Amide-imide) Aerogel Materials Produced via an Ice Templating Process
Materials 2018, 11(2), 233; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11020233
Received: 8 January 2018 / Revised: 26 January 2018 / Accepted: 1 February 2018 / Published: 3 February 2018
PDF Full-text (4554 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Low density composites of sodium montmorillonite and poly(amide-imide) polymers have been created using an ice templating method, which serves as an alternative to the often-difficult foaming of high temperature/high performance polymers. The starting polymer was received in the poly(amic acid) form which can
[...] Read more.
Low density composites of sodium montmorillonite and poly(amide-imide) polymers have been created using an ice templating method, which serves as an alternative to the often-difficult foaming of high temperature/high performance polymers. The starting polymer was received in the poly(amic acid) form which can be cured using heat, into a water insoluble amide-imide copolymer. The resulting materials have densities in the 0.05 g/cm3 range and have excellent mechanical properties. Using a tertiary amine as a processing aid provides for lower viscosity and allows more concentrated polymer solutions to be used. The concentration of the amine relative to the acid groups on the polymer backbone has been found to cause significant difference in the mechanical properties of the dried materials. The synthesis and characterization of low density versions of two poly(amide-imide) polymers and their composites with sodium montmorillonite clay are discussed in the present work. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aerogels: Synthesis, Characterization and Application)
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Graphical abstract

Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

Properties of an SiO2 aerogel-based rendering and its application on buildings

 

Some hygro-thermal properties of a commercially available aerogel-based rendering and its main ingredient have been investigated with respect to water respectively moisture uptake under different conditions in laboratory and on-site of different buildings. It was shown that water does not enter the aerogel granules but rather concentrates in the porous phase surrounding the granules. An application to a historic building without reinforcement mesh and structured finish, showed the versatile character of the render. Some infrared pictures show also the thermal influence of the aerogel-based rendering compared to the uninsulated façade.

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