The effect of gamma ray irradiation on morphology and optical properties of ZnO/Mesoporous silica (MPS) nanocomposite was studied. The ZnO/MPS nanocomposite was irradiated with gamma rays of doses 30, 60, and 90 kGy and dose-rate of irradiation was 0.15 kGy/hour. Irradiated samples are characterized with FE-SEM, FT-IR, UV-vis, and Photoluminescence (PL) spectrometers. SEM pictures showed that morphology changed from spherical to flake like morphology. UV-vis analysis showed that the band gap increased with increase of gamma ray irradiation dose. This enhancement of the band gap is assigned to the depletion of oxygen vacancies with irradiation. The intensity of PL peak decreased gradually with increase of gamma ray irradiation dose. The decrease in PL intensity is attributed to the decrease of oxygen vacancies at the interface due to poor interface and improper passivation between ZnO/MPS.
This study aimed to investigate the effect of aggressive environment on the flexural properties of halloysite nanotubes-polyester nanocomposites. Results showed that the addition of halloysite nanotubes into polyester matrix was found to improve flexural properties of the nanocomposites in dry condition and after water-methanol exposure. Significant increase in surface roughness was also observed and measured by Alicona Infinite Focus optical microscope.
Exposure to ionizing radiation has been found to induce changes in poly(vinylidene fluoride) (PVDF) homopolymers. The high dose gamma irradiation process induces the formation of C=C and C=O bonds in its [CH2-CF2]n main chain. The irradiation also provokes crosslinking and chain scission. All these radio-induced defects lead to changes in the PVDF crystalline structure. As a consequence, it is common to observe a decrease in the melting temperature (TM) and melting latent heat (LM) and some changes in its ferroelectric features. We have investigated the possibility of preparing nanocomposites of PVDF with graphene oxide (GO) through the radio-induction of molecular bonds. In this work, we discuss how the gamma radiation interacts with the nanocomposite crystalline structure.
In recent years, polymer/clay nanocomposites have generated great interest in the polymer industry as a new type of composite material because of their superior properties, which includes high heat deflection temperature, gas barrier performance, dimensional stability, enhanced mechanical properties, optical clarity and flame retardancy when compared with the pure polymer or conventional composites. The investigation of change of the tensile properties of organoclay/linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE) nanocomposites with the use of Dioctyl terephthalate (DOTP) (as plasticizer) and calcite (as filler) has been aimed. The composites and organoclay synthesized were characterized using the techniques such as XRD, HRTEM and FTIR techniques. The spectroscopic results indicate that platelets of organoclay were well dispersed within the polymeric matrix. The tensile properties of the composites were compared considering the stress-strain curve drawn for each composite and pure polymer. It was observed that the composites prepared by adding the plasticizer at different ratios and a certain amount of calcite exhibited different tensile behaviors compared to pure polymer.
Superabsorbent polymers (SAPs) or hydrogels with three-dimensional hydrophilic network structure are high-performance water absorbent and retention materials. The in situ synthesis of metal nanoparticles within polymeric network as antibacterial agents for bio-applications is an approach that takes advantage of the existing free-space into networks, which not only acts as a template for nucleation of nanoparticles, but also provides long term stability and reduces their toxicity by delaying their oxidation and release. In this work, SAP/nanosilver nanocomposites were successfully developed by a unique green process at room temperature, which involves in situ formation of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) within hydrogels as a template. The aim of this study is to investigate whether these AgNPs-loaded hydrogels are potential candidates for antimicrobial applications. Firstly, the superabsorbents were prepared through radical copolymerization via grafting and crosslinking of acrylamide (AAm) onto chitosan backbone (Cs) using potassium persulfate as initiator and N,N’-methylenebisacrylamide as the crosslinker. Then, they were hydrolyzed to achieve superabsorbents with ampholytic properties and uppermost swelling capacity. Lastly, the AgNPs were biosynthesized and entrapped into hydrogels through a simple, eco-friendly and cost-effective method using aqueous silver nitrate as a silver precursor and curcuma longa tuber-powder extracts as both reducing and stabilizing agent. The formed superabsorbents nanocomposites (Cs-g-PAAm)/AgNPs were characterized by X-ray Diffraction (XRD), UV-visible Spectroscopy, Attenuated Total reﬂectance Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR), Inductively Coupled Plasma (ICP), and Thermogravimetric Analysis (TGA). Microscopic surface structure analyzed by Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM) has showed spherical shapes of AgNPs with size in the range of 3-15 nm. The extent of nanosilver loading was decreased by increasing Cs content into network. The silver-loaded hydrogel was thermally more stable than the unloaded dry hydrogel counterpart. The swelling equilibrium degree (Q) and centrifuge retention capacity (CRC) in deionized water were affected by both contents of Cs and the entrapped AgNPs. The nanosilver-embedded hydrogels exhibited antibacterial activity against Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus bacteria. These comprehensive results suggest that the elaborated AgNPs-loaded nanomaterials could be used to produce valuable wound dressing.
Increasing demands of contemporary applications for high strength and lightweight materials prompted the development of metal-matrix composites (MMCs). After the discovery of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) in 1991 (revealing an excellent set of mechanical properties) became one of the most promising strengthening materials for MMC applications. Additionally, the relatively low density of the nanotubes imparted high specific strengths, making them perfect strengthening material to reinforce MMCs. In the present study, aluminum-multiwalled carbon nanotubes (Al-MWCNTs) composite was prepared in an air induction furnace. The dispersion of the nanotubes in molten aluminum was assisted by inherent string action of induction heating at 790°C. During the fabrication process, multifunctional fluxes were used to avoid oxidation of the nanotubes and molten aluminum. Subsequently, the melt was cast in to a copper mold and cold rolled to 0.5 mm thickness. During metallographic examination using a scanning electron microscope, it was observed that the nanotubes were effectively dispersed in the matrix. The mechanical properties of the composite were significantly increased as compared to pure aluminum specimen i.e. the yield strength from 65 to 115 MPa, the tensile strength from 82 to 125 MPa and hardness from 27 to 30 HV for pure aluminum and Al-CNTs composite, respectively. To recognize the associated strengthening mechanisms in the nanocomposites, three foremost strengthening models i.e. shear lag model, Orowan looping and Hall-Petch have been critically analyzed; experimental data were found to be closely satisfying the shear lag model.
Particle reinforced Metal Matrix Composite (MMC) succeeds in synergizing the metallic matrix with ceramic particle reinforcements to result in improved strength, particularly at elevated temperatures, but adversely it affects the ductility of the matrix because of agglomeration and porosity. The present study investigates the outcome of tensile properties in a cast and hot forged composite reinforced simultaneously with coarse and fine particles. Nano-sized alumina particles have been generated by milling mixture of aluminum and manganese dioxide powders. Milled particles after drying are added to molten metal and the resulting slurry is cast. The microstructure of the composites shows good distribution of both the size categories of particles without significant clustering. The presence of nanoparticles along with coarser particles in a composite improves both strength and ductility considerably. Delay in debonding of coarser particles to higher stress is due to reduced mismatch in extension caused by increased strain hardening in presence of the nanoparticles. However, higher addition of powder mix beyond a limit results in deterioration of mechanical properties, possibly due to clustering of nanoparticles. The porosity in cast composite generally increases with the increasing addition of powder mix as observed during process and on forging it has got reduced. The base alloy and nanocomposites show improvement in flow stress which could be attributed to lowering of porosity and grain refinement as a consequence of forging.
Polymer-particle interactions can be effectively utilized to produce composites that possess physicochemical properties superior to that of neat polymer. The incorporation of fillers with dimensions comparable to polymer chain size produces composites with extra-ordinary properties owing to very high surface to volume ratio. The dispersion of nanoparticles is achieved by inducing steric repulsion realized by grafting particles with polymeric chains. A comprehensive understanding of the interparticle interaction between these functionalized nanoparticles plays an important role in the synthesis of a stable polymer nanocomposite. With the focus on incorporation of clay sheets in a polymer matrix, we theoretically construct the polymer mediated interparticle potential for two nanosheets grafted with polymeric chains. The self-consistent field theory (SCFT) is employed to obtain the inhomogeneous composition field under equilibrium. Unlike the continuum models, SCFT is built from the microscopic description taking in to account the molecular interactions contributed by both intra- and inter-chain potentials. We present the results of SCFT calculations of the interaction potential curve for two grafted nanosheets immersed in the matrix of polymeric chains of dissimilar chemistry to that of the grafted chains. The interaction potential is repulsive at short separation and shows depletion attraction for moderate separations induced by high grafting density. It is found that the strength of attraction well can be tuned by altering the compatibility between the grafted and the mobile chains. Further, we construct the interaction potential between two nanosheets grafted with diblock copolymers with one of the blocks being chemically identical to the free polymeric chains. The interplay between the enthalpic interaction between the dissimilar species and the entropy of the free chains gives rise to a rich behavior in interaction potential curve obtained for two separate cases of free chains being chemically similar to either the grafted block or the free block of the grafted diblock chains.
In the field of civil engineering, Structural Health Monitoring is a topic of growing interest. Effective monitoring instruments permit the control of the working conditions of structures and infrastructures, through the identification of behavioral anomalies due to incipient damages, especially in areas of high environmental hazards as earthquakes. While traditional sensors can be applied only in a limited number of points, providing a partial information for a structural diagnosis, novel transducers may allow a diffuse sensing. Thanks to the new tools and materials provided by nanotechnology, new types of multifunctional sensors are developing in the scientific panorama. In particular, cement-matrix composite materials capable of diagnosing their own state of strain and tension, could be originated by the addition of specific conductive nanofillers. Because of the nature of the material they are made of, these new cementitious nano-modified transducers can be inserted within the concrete elements, transforming the same structures in sets of widespread sensors. This paper is aimed at presenting the results of a research about a new self-sensing nanocomposite and about the implementation of smart sensors for Structural Health Monitoring. The developed nanocomposite has been obtained by inserting multi walled carbon nanotubes within a cementitious matrix. The insertion of such conductive carbon nanofillers provides the base material with piezoresistive characteristics and peculiar sensitivity to mechanical modifications. The self-sensing ability is achieved by correlating the variation of the external stress or strain with the variation of some electrical properties, such as the electrical resistance or conductivity. Through the measurement of such electrical characteristics, the performance and the working conditions of an element or a structure can be monitored. Among conductive carbon nanofillers, carbon nanotubes seem to be particularly promising for the realization of self-sensing cement-matrix materials. Some issues related to the nanofiller dispersion or to the influence of the nano-inclusions amount in the cement matrix need to be carefully investigated: the strain sensitivity of the resulting sensors is influenced by such factors. This work analyzes the dispersion of the carbon nanofillers, the physical properties of the fresh dough, the electrical properties of the hardened composites and the sensing properties of the realized sensors. The experimental campaign focuses specifically on their dynamic characterization and their applicability to the monitoring of full-scale elements. The results of the electromechanical tests with both slow varying and dynamic loads show that the developed nanocomposite sensors can be effectively used for the health monitoring of structures.
In situ modified cyclohexanone-formaldehyde resins were prepared by addition of alendronic acid during resin preparation. Clay nanocomposites in ketonic resins were achieved by adding clay into the flask at the beginning of the resin preparation. The prepared resins were used for the synthesis of fire resistant polyurethanes foam. Both phosphorous containing modifier compound alendronic acid and nanoclay increases fire resistance of the cyclohexanone-formaldehyde resin thus polyurethane produced from these resins. The effect of the concentrations of alendronic acid and clay on the fire resistance and physical properties of polyurethanes was studied.
Replacement of plastics used in the food industry seems to be a serious issue to overcome mainly the environmental problems in recent years. This study investigates the hydrophilicity and permeability properties of starch biopolymer which ethylene vinyl alcohol (EVOH) (0-10%) and nanocrystalline cellulose (NCC) (1-15%) were used to enhance its properties. Starch -EVOH nanocomposites were prepared by casting method in different formulations. NCC production by acid hydrolysis was confirmed by scanning electron microscopy. Solubility, water vapor permeability, water vapor transmission rate and moisture absorbance were measured on each of the nanocomposites. The results were analyzed by SAS software. The lowest moisture absorbance was measured in pure starch nanocomposite containing 8% NCC. The lowest permeability to water vapor belongs to starch nanocomposite containing 8% NCC and the sample containing 7.8% EVOH and 13% NCC. Also the lowest solubility was observed in the composite contains the highest amount of EVOH. Applied Process resulted in production of bio films which have good resistance to water vapor permeability and solubility in water. The use of NCC and EVOH leads to reduced moisture absorbance property of the biofilms.
Water contamination by toxic compound is one of the serious environmental problems today. These toxic compounds mostly originated from industrial effluents, agriculture, natural sources and human waste. These studies focus on modification of multiwalled carbon nanotube (MWCNTs) with nanoparticle of calixarene and explore the possibility of using this modification for the remediation of cadmium in water. The nanocomposites were prepared by dissolving calixarene in chloroform solution as solvent, followed by additional multiwalled carbon nanotube (MWCNTs) then sonication process for 3 hour and fabricated the nanocomposites on substrate by spin coating method. Finally, the nanocomposites were tested on cadmium ion (10 mg/ml). The morphology of nanocomposites was investigated by FESEM showing the formation of calixarene on the outer walls of carbon nanotube and cadmium ion also clearly seen from the micrograph. This formation was supported by using energy dispersive x-ray (EDX). The presence of cadmium ions in the films, leads to some changes in the surface potential and Fourier Transform Infrared spectroscopy (FTIR).The nanocomposites MWCNTs-calixarene have potential for development of sensor for pollutant monitoring and nanoelectronics devices applications.
Polysulfone (PSU) is a specialty engineering polymer having various industrial applications. PSU is especially used in waste water treatment membranes due to its good mechanical properties, structural and chemical stability. But it is a hydrophobic material and therefore its surface aim to pollute easily. In order to resolve this problem and extend the properties of membrane, PSU surface is rendered hydrophilic by addition of the sepiolite nanofibers. Sepiolite is one of the natural clays, which is a hydrate magnesium silicate fiber, also one of the well known layered clays of the montmorillonites where has several unique channels and pores within. It has also moisture durability, strength and low price. Sepiolite channels give great capacity of absorption and good surface properties. In this study, nanocomposites of commercial PSU and Sepiolite were prepared by solvent mixing method. Different organic solvents and their mixtures were used. Rheological characteristics of PSU-Sepiolite solvent mixtures were analyzed, the solubility of nanocomposite content in those mixtures were studied.
In this work, we report, a systematic study on the structural and optical properties of Pr-doped ZnO nanostructures and PVA:Zn98Pr2O polymer matrix nanocomposites free standing films. These particles are synthesized through simple wet chemical route and solution casting technique at room temperature, respectively. Structural studies carried out by X-ray diffraction method confirm that the prepared pure ZnO and Pr doped ZnO nanostructures are in hexagonal wurtzite structure and the microstrain is increased upon doping. TEM analysis reveals that the prepared materials are in sheet like nature. Absorption spectra show free excitonic absorption band at 370 nm and red shift for the Pr doped ZnO nanostructures. The PVA:Zn98Pr2O composite film exhibits both free excitonic and PVA absorption bands at 282 nm. Fourier transform infrared spectral studies confirm the presence of A1 (TO) and E1 (TO) modes of Zn-O bond vibration and the formation of polymer composite materials.