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Preparation of ceramic nanofibers of iron vanadate using electrospinning method

Abstract

Because of special characteristics of vanadate compound, such as its sustainability, magneticity, high selectivity in reactions and catalytic character, this study aimed to preparation and analyzing novel ceramic iron vanadate (FeVO4) nanofibers. The ceramic nanofibers of iron vanadate were made by the combination of sol-gel and electrospinning methods. First, polyvinyl alcohol (PVA), as a matrix polymer, was mixed separately with ammonium metavanadate (NH4VO3) and iron (III) nitrate (Fe(NO3)3). As a result, the spinnable polymeric gel was obtained from the controlled mixture of these two precursors of ceramic material. Electrospinning of PVA/iron (III) nitrate/ammonium vanadate solution was done using an Electroris setup that enabled preparation of polymeric template nanofiber. Finally, iron vanadate nanofiber was obtained by calcination of polymer nanofiber at controlled temperature. The products were characterized with scanning electron microscope (SEM), energy dispersive X-ray spectroscope (EDX), X-ray diffraction (XRD), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR), vibrating sample magnetometer (VSM) and Brunauer-Emmett-Teller (BET) surface area analysis.

Open access
Facile chemical strategy to synthesize Ag@polypyrrole microarrays and investigating its anisotropic effect on polymer conductivity

Abstract

A facile chemical approach was developed to fabricate microarrays (MAs) of Ag@polypyrrole nanocables (NCs). The strategy involved crosslinking the NCs by tetraethoxy silane (TEOS) under continuous pulse sonication without using a substrate. The material was characterized by scanning electron microscope (SEM) coupled with EDX, which revealed the longitudinal interconnections within the nanocables and creating unidirectional alignment in the form of MAs. FT-IR and Raman spectroscopy was employed to characterize the encapsulating polymer as polypyrrole (ppy) around Ag nanowires (NWs). The microarrays produced red shift in surface plasmon resonance (SPR) of Ag NWs, and drastically improved the thermal stability and conductivity of encasing ppy. It has imparted anisotropic conductivity effect on ppy which resulted in sharp decrease in resistivity from 8.35 × 1010 Ω to 2.449 Ω, when NCs were isolated and crosslinked into MAs form, respectively. The drastic decrease in resistivity of ppy was due to the anisotropic effect produced by the MAs format of NWs.

Open access
Optical and thermal properties of TeO2–B2O3–Gd2O3 glass systems

Abstract

New glass samples with composition (1 – x)[(TeO2)70(B2O3)30] – x(Gd2O3) with x = 0.2, 0.4, 0.6, 0.8 and 1.0 in mol% have been synthesized by conventional melt-quenching techniques. X-ray diffraction (XRD) studies were performed in order to confirm the amorphous nature of the samples. The density of the samples has been found to vary with the Gd2O3 content, whereas an opposite trend has been observed in the molar volume. The analysis of Fourier Transform Infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy of the samples showed that the glass network is mainly built of TeO3, TeO4, BO3 and BO4 units. The addition of Gd2O3 changed the refractive index, optical band gap and Urbach energy of the glass samples. The thermal properties of the studied glasses were investigated by measuring the thermal diffusivity of the samples by using photoflash method at room temperature.

Open access
Study of crystallographic, optical and sensing properties of Na2WO4 films deposited by thermal evaporation with several thickness

Abstract

Na2WO4 films have been grown at 400 °C using thermal evaporation technique. Their structural properties were characterized by XRD, while their chemical composition was verified by both EDX and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). The evolution of crystallinity was studied as a function of film thickness that ranged from 500 nm to 3000 nm. The grain size increased with increasing film thickness. The surface morphology of the prepared films was studied using scanning electron microscope (SEM) and atomic force microscopy (AFM). It has been observed that the average transmittance of samples in the visible and near infrared range has varied from 90 % to 78 % with the film thickness. The optical band gap of the Na2WO4 films varied from 3.8 eV to 4.1 eV. The crystalline size increased with increasing thickness and showed better sensing response to gases. Thus, this study confirmed the possibility of using Na2WO4 thick films as a sensor element for detection of ethanol (C2H5OH), acetone (C3H6O) methanol (CH3OH) and ammonia hydroxide (NH4OH) vapor at room temperature, where thicker films exhibited sensing properties with a maximum sensitivity at 25 °C in air, especially for NH4OH.

Open access
A High-Altitude Balloon Platform for Space Life Sciences Education

Abstract

High-altitude balloons (HABs) present a valuable and cost-effective tool for educators and students to access the conditions that are analogous to space and extraterrestrial environments in the Earth’s upper atmosphere. Historically, HABs have been used for meteorological measurements, observation, sampling of aerosols, and exposure of samples to upper atmosphere environments. The Earth’s stratosphere allows researchers access to a unique combination of wideband solar radiation, extreme cold, rarefied air, low humidity, and acute ionizing radiation—conditions that are relevant to space biology research. Here, we describe a reproducible payload for a HAB mission that can be constructed, launched, and retrieved for about $3,000. This general standard operating procedure can be used by educators, community scientists, and research teams working with limited resources.

Open access
Influence of Humidity on the Energy of Specific Strain in the Process of Loading Sedimentary Rocks

Abstract

This article presents the results of tests on the energy properties of sedimentary rocks in the Upper Silesian Coal Basin. The rocks were tested both in an air-dry state and in a water saturation state. Samples of sedimentary rocks were collected from boreholes drilled in the underground workings of coal mines located within the area of the city of Jastrzębie, in the areas of the Chwałowice Trough and Rybnik Trough (south-western part of the Upper Silesian Coal Basin) and in the Main Trough. Influence of saturation condition on the values of the tested energy parameters was observed. The values of elastic energy and dissipated energy obtained for the samples tested in water saturation were lower compared to the values obtained for samples tested in air-dry state. As observed, an increase in the values of the given types of specific energy corresponds to an increase in the uniaxial compression strength in air-dry state and in water saturation state. Results of the tests are original and they can be applied while analysing the possibility of the occurrence of some dynamic phenomena and hazards in mine workings in Carboniferous rock mass in the Upper Silesian Coal Basin, caused by mining operations.

Open access
Setup of axial bearing capacity of open ended tubular steel piles driven in sand

Abstract

This paper focuses on the setup of axial bearing capacity of open ended tubular steel piles that are used for offshore foundation systems such as those of wind turbines. A comparative evaluation of the most commonly used models for setup prediction shows an upper estimate bound and a lower estimate bound, which correspond approximately to a setup rate of 60% increase per log cycle of time and 20% increase per log cycle of time, respectively. This finding is validated with the results of case histories reported in literature, which show that the setup values of most case histories considered lie in the best estimate zone between the upper estimate zone and the lower estimate zone. The analysis results show a minimum setup factor of approximately 1.5 for 100 days following end of driving of open-ended tubular steel pile driven in sand.

Highlights

  1. Detailed presentation of setup phenomenon in granular sand and contributing mechanisms
  2. Detailed presentation of setup prediction models in granular sand
  3. Demonstration of lower bound, best estimate bound and upper bound for setup prediction
  4. Compilation of case histories of setup for driven open ended pile in granular soil and validation of lower estimate, best estimate and upper estimate zone

Open access
Synthesis, morphology, electrical conductivity and electrochemical properties of α-Ni(OH)2 and its composites with carbon

Abstract

A simple and effective hydrothermal synthesis of spherical α-Ni(OH)2 particles and α-Ni(OH)2/carbon composites was proposed. The mechanism of ultrafine α-Ni(OH)2 phase forming and correlations between synthesis conditions, morphology, electrical conductivity were analyzed. It was found that carbon nanoparticles form an electric conductive cover on nickel hydroxide microparticles during synthesis which increases overall electronic conductivity of the composite material. α-Ni(OH)2 and α-Ni(OH)2/C samples were tested as electrodes for hybrid supercapacitors. It was found that carbon coverings stabilize α-Ni(OH)2 phase in the alkaline medium. The comparison of the influence of laser irradiation and ultrasonic treatment on the electrochemical performance of the obtained materials was made.

Open access
Thin film characterization of Ce and Sn co-doped CdZnS by chemical bath deposition

Abstract

Cerium and tin co-doped cadmium zinc sulfide nanoparticles (CdZnS:Ce)Sn were synthesized by chemical bath deposition method with a fixed concentration of Ce (3.84 mol%) and three different concentrations of Sn (2 mol % and 4 mol% and 6 mol%). They showed broad photoluminescence spectra in the visible region under the ultraviolet excitation with a wavelength of 325 nm. The photoluminescence emission peaks were obtained at 540 nm, 560 nm and 570 nm for CdZnS, CdZnS:Ce and (CdZnS:Ce)Sn thin films, respectively having different concentrations of Sn. It has been observed that the photoluminescence emission peak shifted to higher wavelength region with an increase in intensity by Ce doping and Ce–Sn co-doping. Further enhancement in luminescence peak intensity has been observed by increasing concentration of Sn in (CdZnS:Ce)Sn films. Average crystallite size, measured from XRD data, was found to be increased with increasing concentration of Sn. An increase in the concentration of Sn shifted the UV-Vis absorption edge toward the higher wavelength side. Energy band gap for undoped CdZnS and Ce–Sn co-doped CdZnS varied from 2.608 eV to 2.405 eV. The SEM micrographs of CdZnS and (CdZnS:Ce)Sn films showed the leafy-like and ball-like structures. The presence of Sn and Ce was confirmed by EDAX analysis.

Open access
Hydraulic Characterization of a Self-Weight Compacted Coal

Abstract

Water infiltration through coal stocks exposed to weather elements represents a key issue for many old mining sites and coal-fired power plants from the environmental point of view, considering the negative impact on human health of the deriving groundwater, soil and air pollution. Within this context, the paper investigates the hydraulic behaviour of a self-weight compacted unsaturated coal mass and its impact on the numerical prediction of infiltration induced by rainfall events. In particular, the work focuses on the experimental investigation carried out at different representative scales, from the grain scale to physical modelling. The material, when starting from uncompacted conditions, seems to be characterized by metastable structure, which tends to collapse under imbibition. In addition, direct numerical predictions of the seepage regime through a partially saturated coal mass have been performed. As the compaction of the coal stock induced by dozers has not been taken into account, the numerical simulations represent a conservative approach for the assessment of chemical pollution hazard associated to water infiltration into a real stockpile under operational conditions.

Open access