In this study, the RRAM devices with the TiN/Ti/HfOx/TiN structure were fabricated, then the electrical characteristics of the devices without annealing and after 400 °C and 500 °C of the furnace annealing (FA) temperature processes were compared. The RRAM devices after the FA’s 400 °C showed the lower forming, set and reset voltages than the other devices without annealing. However, the RRAM devices after the FA’s 500 °C did not show any electrical characteristics because the TiN/Ti/HfOx/TiN device was oxidized, as shown in the XPS analysis. From these results, the RRAM devices after the FA’s 400 °C showed the best electrical characteristics.
Worldwide energy independence is reliant on the ability to leverage locally available resources for fuel production. Recently, syngas produced through gasification of carbonaceous materials provided a gateway to a host of processes for the production of various chemicals including transportation fuels. The basis of the production of gasoline and diesel-like fuels is the Fischer Tropsch Synthesis (FTS) process: A catalyzed chemical reaction that converts a mixture of carbon monoxide (CO) and hydrogen (H2) into long chain hydrocarbons. Until now, it has been argued that only transition metal catalysts (usually Co or Fe) are active toward the CO hydrogenation and subsequent chain growth in the presence of hydrogen. In this paper, we demonstrate that carbon nanotube (CNT) surfaces are also capable of hydro-deoxygenating CO and producing long chain hydrocarbons similar to that obtained through the FTS but with orders of magnitude higher conversion efficiencies than the present state-of-the-art FTS catalysts. We have used advanced experimental tools such as XPS and microscopy techniques to characterize CNTs and identify C-O functional groups as the active sites for the enhanced catalytic activity. Furthermore, we have conducted quantum Density Functional Theory (DFT) calculations to confirm that C-O groups (inherent on CNT surfaces) could indeed be catalytically active towards reduction of CO with H2, and capable of sustaining chain growth. The DFT calculations have shown that the kinetically and thermodynamically feasible route for CO insertion and hydro-deoxygenation are different from that on transition metal catalysts. Experiments on a continuous flow tubular reactor with various nearly metal-free CNTs have been carried out and the products have been analyzed. CNTs functionalized by various methods were evaluated under different conditions. Reactor tests revealed that the hydrogen pre-treatment reduced the activity of the catalysts to negligible levels. Without the pretreatment, the activity for CO conversion as found to be 7 µmol CO/g CNT/s. The O-functionalized samples showed very activities greater than 85 µmol CO/g CNT/s with nearly 100% conversion. Analyses show that CO hydro-deoxygenation occurred at the C-O/O-H functional groups. It was found that while the products were similar to FT products, differences in selectivities were observed which, in turn, was a result of a different catalytic mechanism. These findings now open a new paradigm for CNT-based hydrogenation catalysts and constitute a defining point for obtaining clean, earth abundant, alternative fuels through the use of efficient and renewable catalyst.
The current study aims to investigate the effect of fillers with different geometries and sizes on the interfacial shear properties of PA6 composites with de-sized carbon fiber. The fillers which have been investigated are namely; nano-layer silicates (nanoclay), sub-micro aluminum titanium (ALTi) particles, and multiwall carbon nanotube (MWCNT). By means of X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), epoxide group which defined as a sizing agent, has been removed. Sizing removal can reduce the acid parameter of carbon fibers surface promoting bonding strength at the fiber/matrix interface which is a desirable property for the carbon fiber composites. Microdroplet test showed that the interfacial shear strength (IFSS) has been enhanced with the addition of 10wt% ALTi by about 23% comparing with neat PA6. However, with including other types of fillers into PA6, the results did not show enhancement of IFSS.
This paper reports the effects of laser energy on the characteristics of bubbles generated in the weld zone and the formation of new chemical bonds at the Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET)/Ti joint interface in laser joining of PET to Ti. The samples were produced by using different laser energies ranging from 1.5 J – 6 J in steps of 1.5 J, while all other joining parameters remained unchanged. The types of chemical bonding at the joint interface were analysed by the x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) depth-profiling method. The results show that the characteristics of the bubbles and the thickness of the chemically bonded interface, which contains the laser generated bonds of Ti–C and Ti–O, increase markedly with increasing laser energy input. The tensile failure load of the joint depends on the combined effect of the amount and distribution of the bubbles formed and the chemical bonding intensity of the joint interface.
In the work presented here, nitrogen-doped graphene materials were synthesized and used as metal-free electrocatalysts for oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) under alkaline conditions. Paraphenylenediamine was used as N precursor. The N-doped graphene was synthesized under hydrothermal treatment at 200°C. All the materials have been characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and X-ray photo-electron spectroscopy (XPS). Moreover, for electrochemical evaluation of samples, Rotating Disk electrode (RDE) and Cyclic Voltammetry techniques (CV) were employed. The resulting material exhibits an outstanding catalytic activity for the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) as well as excellent resistance towards methanol crossover effects, indicating their promising potential as ORR electrocatalysts for alkaline fuel cells.
Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) represent a promising technology for simultaneous bioelectricity generation and wastewater treatment. Catalysts are significant portions of the cost of microbial fuel cell cathodes. Many materials have been tested as aqueous cathodes, but air-cathodes are needed to avoid energy demands for water aeration. The sluggish oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) rate at air cathode necessitates efficient electrocatalyst such as carbon supported platinum catalyst (Pt/C) which is very costly. Manganese oxide (MnO2) was a representative metal oxide which has been studied as a promising alternative electrocatalyst for ORR and has been tested in air-cathode MFCs. However the single MnO2 has poor electric conductivity and low stability. In the present work, the MnO2 catalyst has been modified by doping Pt nanoparticle. The goal of the work was to improve the performance of the MFC with minimum Pt loading. MnO2 and Pt nanoparticles were prepared by hydrothermal and sol gel methods, respectively. Wet impregnation method was used to synthesize Pt/MnO2 catalyst. The catalysts were further used as cathode catalysts in air-cathode cubic MFCs, in which anaerobic sludge was inoculated as biocatalysts and palm oil mill effluent (POME) was used as the substrate in the anode chamber. The asprepared Pt/MnO2 was characterized comprehensively through field emission scanning electron microscope (FESEM), X-Ray diffraction (XRD), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), and cyclic voltammetry (CV) where its surface morphology, crystallinity, oxidation state and electrochemical activity were examined, respectively. XPS revealed Mn (IV) oxidation state and Pt (0) nanoparticle metal, indicating the presence of MnO2 and Pt. Morphology of Pt/MnO2 observed from FESEM shows that the doping of Pt did not cause change in needle-like shape of MnO2 which provides large contacting surface area. The electrochemical active area of the Pt/MnO2 catalysts has been increased from 276 to 617 m2/g with the increase in Pt loading from 0.2 to 0.8 wt%. The CV results in O2 saturated neutral Na2SO4 solution showed that MnO2 and Pt/MnO2 catalysts could catalyze ORR with different catalytic activities. MFC with Pt/MnO2 (0.4 wt% Pt) as air cathode catalyst generates a maximum power density of 165 mW/m3, which is higher than that of MFC with MnO2 catalyst (95 mW/m3). The open circuit voltage (OCV) of the MFC operated with MnO2 cathode gradually decreased during 14 days of operation, whereas the MFC with Pt/MnO2 cathode remained almost constant throughout the operation suggesting the higher stability of the Pt/MnO2 catalyst. Therefore, Pt/MnO2 with 0.4 wt% Pt successfully demonstrated as an efficient and low cost electrocatalyst for ORR in air cathode MFC with higher electrochemical activity, stability and hence enhanced performance.
Alkylated silicon nanocrystals (C11-SiNCs) were prepared successfully by galvanostatic etching of p-Si(100) wafers followed by a thermal hydrosilation reaction of 1-undecene in refluxing toluene in order to extract C11-SiNCs from porous silicon. Erbium trichloride was added to alkylated SiNCs using a simple mixing chemical route. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first investigation on mixing SiNCs with erbium ions (III) by this chemical method. The chemical characterization of C11-SiNCs and their mixtures with Er3+(Er/C11-SiNCs) were carried out using X-ray photoemission spectroscopy (XPS). The optical properties of C11- SiNCs and their mixtures with Er3+ were investigated using Raman spectroscopy and photoluminescence (PL). The erbium mixed alkylated SiNCs shows an orange PL emission peak at around 595 nm that originates from radiative recombination of Si. Er/C11-SiNCs mixture also exhibits a weak PL emission peak at 1536 nm that originates from the intra-4f transition in erbium ions (Er3+). The PL peak of Si in Er/C11-SiNCs mixture is increased in the intensity up to three times as compared to pure C11-SiNCs. The collected data suggest that this chemical mixing route leads instead to a transfer of energy from erbium ions to alkylated SiNCs.
To develop AZ91D magnesium alloys with improved properties, we have applied TiN and VN/TiN multilayer coatings using DC magnetron sputter technique. Coating structure, surface morphology, chemical bonding and corrosion resistance of coatings were analyzed by x-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscope (SEM), x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), and tafel extrapolation method, respectively. XPS analysis reveal that VN overlayer reacts with oxygen at the VN/TiN interface and forms more stable TiN layer. Morphological investigations and the corrosion results show that VN/TiN multilayer thin film coatings are quite effective to optimize the corrosion resistance of Mg alloys.
Hydrogenated amorphous carbon (a-C:H) films have been synthesized by a radio frequency plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (rf-PECVD) technique with different bias voltage from 0.0 to -0.5 kV. The Raman spectra displayed the polymer-like hydrogenated amorphous carbon (PLCH) film with 0.0 to -0.1 and a-C:H films with -0.2 to -0.5 kV of bias voltages. The surface chemical information of all films were studied by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) technique, presented to C-C (sp2 and sp3) and C-O bonds, and relative carbon (C) and oxygen (O) atomics contents. The O contamination had affected on structure and optical properties. The true density of PLCH and a-C:H films were characterized by X-ray refractivity (XRR) method, showed the result as in the range of 1.16-1.73 g/cm3 that depending on an increasing of bias voltage. The hardness was proportional to the true density of films. In addition, the optical properties i.e. refractive index (n) and extinction coefficient (k) of these films were determined by a spectroscopic ellipsometry (SE) method that give formation to in 1.62-2.10 (n) and 0.04-0.15 (k) respectively. These results indicated that the optical properties confirmed the Raman results as presenting the structure changed with applied bias voltage increased.
Metal-enhanced Luminescence of silicon nanocrystals (SiNCs) was determined using two different particle sizes of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs). SiNCs have been characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), high resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). It is found that the SiNCs are crystalline with an average diameter of 65 nm and FCC lattice. AgNPs were synthesized using photochemical reduction of AgNO3 with sodium dodecyl sulphate (SDS). The enhanced luminescence of SiNCs by AgNPs was evaluated by confocal Raman microspectroscopy. Enhancement up to x9 and x3 times were observed for SiNCs that mixed with AgNPs which have an average particle size of 100 nm and 30 nm, respectively. Silver NPs-enhanced luminescence of SiNCs occurs as a result of the coupling between the excitation laser light and the plasmon bands of AgNPs; thus this intense field at AgNPs surface couples strongly to SiNCs.
Catalytic cracking of butene to propylene was carried out in a continuous-flow fixed-bed reactor over HZSM-5 catalysts modified by nickel and phosphorus. The structure and acidity of catalysts were measured by N2 adsorption, NH3-TPD and XPS. The results revealed that surface area and strong acid sites both decreased with increasing phosphorus loadings. The increment of phosphorus loadings reduced the butene conversion but enhanced the propylene selectivity and catalyst stability.
The modern energy-efficient houses are often founded on a thermal insulation (TI) layer placed under the building’s RC foundation slab.The purpose of the paper is to identify the potential problems of the buildings founded on TI layer from the seismic point of view. The two main goals of the study were to assess the seismic behavior of such buildings, and to search for the critical structural parameters affecting the response of the superstructure as well as of the extruded polystyrene (XPS) layer. As a test building a multi-storeyed RC frame structure with and without the XPS layer under the foundation slab has been investigated utilizing nonlinear dynamic (time-history) and static (pushover) analyses. The structural response has been investigated with reference to the following performance parameters: i) Building’s lateral roof displacements, ii) Edge compressive and shear strains of the XPS, iii) Horizontal accelerations of the superstructure, iv) Plastic hinge patterns of the superstructure, v) Part of the foundation in compression, and vi) Deformations of the underlying soil and vertical displacements of the foundation slab (i.e. identifying the potential uplift). The results have shown that in the case of higher and stiff structures lying on firm soil the use of XPS under the foundation slab might induce amplified structural peak responses compared to the building models without XPS under the foundation slab. The analysis has revealed that the superstructure as well as the XPS response is substantially affected by the stiffness of the foundation slab.
Recently, an increasing trend of passive and low-energy buildings transferring form non earthquake-prone to earthquake-prone regions has thrown out the question about the seismic safety of such buildings. The paper describes the most commonly used thermal insulating materials and the special details, which could be critical from the point of view of earthquake resistance. The most critical appeared to be the cases of buildings founded on the RC foundation slab lying on a thermal insulation (TI) layer made of extruded polystyrene (XPS). It was pointed out that in such cases the seismic response of such buildings might differ to response of their fixed based counterparts. The main parameters that need special designers’ attention are: the building’s lateral top displacement, the ductility demand of the superstructure, the foundation friction coefficient demand, the maximum compressive stress in the TI layer and the percentage of the uplifted foundation. The analyses have shown that the potentially negative influences of inserting the TI under the foundation slab could be expected only for slender high-rise buildings subjected to severe earthquakes. Oppositely it was demonstrated for the foundation friction coefficient demand which could exceed the capacity value yet in the case of low-rise buildings subjected to moderate earthquakes. Some suggestions to prevent the horizontal shifts are also given.
A variety of routing techniques are available to develop surface runoff hydrographs from rainfall. The selection of runoff routing method is very vital as it is directly related to the type of watershed and the required degree of accuracy. There are different modelling softwares available to explore the rainfall-runoff process in urban areas. XPSTORM, a link-node based, integrated stormwater modelling software, has been used in this study for developing surface runoff hydrograph for a Golf course area located in Rockhampton in Central Queensland in Australia. Four commonly used methods, namely SWMM runoff, Kinematic wave, Laurenson, and Time-Area are employed to generate runoff hydrograph for design storm of this study area. In runoff mode of XPSTORM, the rainfall, infiltration, evaporation and depression storage for subcatchments were simulated and the runoff from the subcatchment to collection node was calculated. The simulation results are presented, discussed and compared. The total surface runoff generated by SWMM runoff, Kinematic wave and Time-Area methods are found to be reasonably close, which indicates any of these methods can be used for developing runoff hydrograph of the study area. Laurenson method produces a comparatively less amount of surface runoff, however, it creates highest peak of surface runoff among all which may be suitable for hilly region. Although the Laurenson hydrograph technique is widely acceptable surface runoff routing technique in Queensland (Australia), extensive investigation is recommended with detailed topographic and hydrologic data in order to assess its suitability for use in the case study area.
The present investigation deals with bioleaching of spent petroleum catalyst using At. ferrooxidans and At. thiooxidans. The spent catalyst used in the present study was pretreated with acetone to remove the oily hydrocarbons. FESEM and XPS analysis indicated the presence of metals in sulfide and oxide forms in spent catalyst. Both At. ferrooxidans and At. thiooxidans were found to be highly effective in producing the acid. Bioleaching with At. ferrooxidans and At. thiooxidans led to higher recovery of metals compare to control. During bioleaching similar recoveries of metals were obtained using At. ferrooxidans and At. thiooxidans. This might be due to the presence of metals as soluble oxides and sulphides in the spent catalyst. At the end of bioleaching, about 87-90% Ni, 34% Al, 65-73% Mo and 92-97% V were leached using above bacteria. It is elucidated that bioleaching with At. thiooxidans is comparatively more advantageous due to lower cost of sulphur.
High purity hydrogen and the valuable by-product of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) can be produced by the methane catalytic decomposition. The methane conversion and the performance of CNTs were determined by the choices of catalysts and the condition of decomposition reaction. In this paper, Ni/MgO and Ni/O-D (oxidized diamond) catalysts were prepared by wetness impregnation method. The effects of reaction temperature and space velocity of methane on the methane conversion were investigated in a fixed-bed. The surface area, structure and micrography were characterized with BET, XPS, SEM, EDS technology. The results showed that the conversion of methane was above 8% within 150 min (T=500) for 33Ni/O-D catalyst and higher than 25% within 120 min (T=650) for 41Ni/MgO catalyst. The initial conversion increased with the increasing temperature of the decomposition reaction, but their catalytic activities decreased rapidly while at too higher temperature. To decrease the space velocity of methane was propitious to promote the methane conversion, but not favor of the hydrogen yields. The appearance of carbon resulted from the methane decomposition lied on the support type and the condition of catalytic reaction. It presented as fiber shape on the surface of Ni/O-D at the relatively lower temperature such as 500 and 550, but as grain shape stacked on and overlayed on the surface of the metal nickel while at 650. The carbon fiber can form on the Ni/MgO surface at 650 and the diameter of the carbon fiber increased with the decreasing space velocity.
The physical methods for RNA secondary structure prediction are time consuming and expensive, thus methods for computational prediction will be a proper alternative. Various algorithms have been used for RNA structure prediction including dynamic programming and metaheuristic algorithms. Musician's behaviorinspired harmony search is a recently developed metaheuristic algorithm which has been successful in a wide variety of complex optimization problems. This paper proposes a harmony search algorithm (HSRNAFold) to find RNA secondary structure with minimum free energy and similar to the native structure. HSRNAFold is compared with dynamic programming benchmark mfold and metaheuristic algorithms (RnaPredict, SetPSO and HelixPSO). The results showed that HSRNAFold is comparable to mfold and better than metaheuristics in finding the minimum free energies and the number of correct base pairs.
Residual dye contents in textile dyeing wastewater have complex aromatic structures that are resistant to degrade in biological wastewater treatment. The objectives of this study were to determine the effectiveness of nanoscale zerovalent iron (NZVI) to decolorize Reactive Black 5 (RB5) and Reactive Red 198 (RR198) in synthesized wastewater and to investigate the effects of the iron particle size, iron dosage and solution pHs on the destruction of RB5 and RR198. Synthesized NZVI was confirmed by transmission electron microscopy (TEM), X-ray diffraction (XRD), and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). The removal kinetic rates (kobs) of RB5 (0.0109 min-1) and RR198 (0.0111 min-1) by 0.5% NZVI were many times higher than those of microscale zerovalent iron (ZVI) (0.0007 min-1 and 0.0008 min-1, respectively). The iron dosage increment exponentially increased the removal efficiencies of both RB5 and RR198. Additionally, lowering pH from 9 to 5 increased the decolorization kinetic rates of both RB5 and RR198 by NZVI. The destruction of azo bond (N=N) in the chromophore of both reactive dyes led to decolorization of dye solutions.