Open Science Research Excellence

Open Science Index

Commenced in January 2007 Frequency: Monthly Edition: International Paper Count: 981

Materials and Metallurgical Engineering

Mechanical Properties of Organic Polymer and Exfoliated Graphite Reinforced Bacteria Cellulose Paper

Bacterial Cellulose (BC) is a structural organic compound produced in the anaerobic process. This material can be a useful eco-friendly substitute for commercial textiles that are used in industries today. BC is easily and sustainably produced and has the capabilities to be used as a replacement in textiles. However, BC is extremely fragile when it completely dries. This research was conducted to improve the mechanical properties of the BC by reinforcing with an organic polymer and exfoliated graphite (EG). The BC films were grown over a period of weeks in a green tea and kombucha solution at 30 °C, then cleaned and added to an enhancing solution. The enhancing solutions were a mixture of 2.5 wt% polymer and 2.5 wt% latex solution, a 5 wt% polymer solution, a 0.20 wt% graphite solution and were each allowed to sit in a furnace for 48 h at 50 °C. Tensile test samples were prepared and tested until fracture at a strain rate of 8 mm/min. From the research with the addition of a 5 wt% polymer solution, the flexibility of the BC has significantly improved with the maximum strain significantly larger than that of the base sample. The addition of EG has also increased the modulus of elasticity of the BC by about 25%.

Application of Synthetic Monomers Grafted Xanthan Gum for Rhodamine B Removal in Aqueous Solution

The rapid industrialisation and population growth have led to a steady fall in freshwater supplies worldwide. As a result, water systems are affected by modern methods upon use due to secondary contamination. The application of novel adsorbents derived from natural polymer holds a great promise in addressing challenges in water treatment. In this study, the UV irradiation technique was used to prepare acrylamide (AAm) monomer, and acrylic acid (AA) monomer grafted xanthan gum (XG) copolymer. Furthermore, the factors affecting rhodamine B (RhB) adsorption from aqueous media, such as pH, dosage, concentration, and time were also investigated. The FTIR results confirmed the formation of graft copolymer by the strong vibrational bands at 1709 cm-1 and 1612 cm-1 for AA and AAm, respectively. Additionally, more irregular, porous and wrinkled surface observed from SEM of XG-g-AAm/AA indicated copolymerization interaction of monomers. The optimum conditions for removing RhB dye with a maximum adsorption capacity of 313 mg/g at 25 0C from aqueous solution were pH approximately 5, initial dye concentration = 200 ppm, adsorbent dose = 30 mg. Also, the detailed investigation of the isothermal and adsorption kinetics of RhB from aqueous solution showed that the adsorption of the dye followed a Freundlich model (R2 = 0.96333) and pseudo-second-order kinetics. The results further indicated that this absorbent based on XG had the universality to remove dye through the mechanism of chemical adsorption. The outstanding adsorption potential of the grafted copolymer could be used to remove cationic dyes from aqueous solution as a low-cost product.

Laser Welding of Titanium Alloy Ti64 to Polyamide 6.6: Effects of Welding Parameters on Temperature Profile Evolution

Composite metal–polymer materials, in particular titanium alloy (Ti-6Al-4V) to polyamide (PA6.6), fabricated by laser joining, have gained cogent interest among industries and researchers concerned with aerospace and biomedical applications. This work adopts infrared (IR) thermography technique to investigate effects of laser parameters used in the welding process on the three-dimensional temperature profile at the rear-side of titanium, at the region to be welded with polyamide. Cross sectional analysis of welded joints showed correlations between the morphology of titanium and polyamide at the weld zone with the corresponding temperature profile. In particular, spatial temperature profile was found to be correlated with the laser beam energy density, titanium molten pool width and depth, and polyamide heat affected zone depth.

The Design of a Die for the Processing of Aluminum through Equal Channel Angular Pressing

The processing of metals through Equal Channel Angular Pressing (ECAP) leads to their remarkable strengthening. The ECAP dies control the amount of strain imposed on the material through its geometry, especially through the angle between the die channels, and thus the microstructural and mechanical properties evolution of the material. The present study describes the design of an ECAP die whose utilization and maintenance are facilitated, and that also controls the eventual undesired flow of the material during processing. The proposed design was validated through numerical simulations procedures using commercial software. The die was manufactured according to the present design and tested. Tests using aluminum alloys also indicated to be suitable for the processing of higher strength alloys.

Leaching of Flotation Concentrate of Oxide Copper Ore from Sepon Mine, Lao PDR
Acid leaching of flotation concentrate of oxide copper ore containing mainly of malachite was performed in a standard agitation tank with various parameters. The effects of solid to liquid ratio, sulfuric acid concentration, agitation speed, leaching temperature and time were examined to get proper conditions. The best conditions are 1:8 solid to liquid ratio, 10% concentration by weight, 250 rev/min, 30 oC and 5-min leaching time in respect. About 20% Cu grade assayed by atomic absorption technique with 98% copper recovery was obtained from these combined optimum conditions. Dissolution kinetics of the concentrate was approximated as a logarithmic function. As a result, the first-order reaction rate is suggested from this leaching study.
Evaluation of As-Cast U-Mo Alloys Processed in Graphite Crucible Coated with Boron Nitride

This paper reports the production of uranium-molybdenum alloys, which have been considered promising fuel for test and research nuclear reactors. U-Mo alloys were produced in three molybdenum contents: 5 wt.%, 7 wt.%, and 10 wt.%, using an electric vacuum induction furnace. A boron nitride-coated graphite crucible was employed in the production of the alloys and, after melting, the material was immediately poured into a boron nitride-coated graphite mold. The incorporation of carbon was observed, but it happened in a lower intensity than in the case of the non-coated crucible/mold. It is observed that the carbon incorporation increased and alloys density decreased with Mo addition. It was also noticed that the increase in the carbon or molybdenum content did not seem to change the as-cast structure in terms of granulation. The three alloys presented body-centered cubic crystal structure (g phase), after solidification, besides a seeming negative microsegregation of molybdenum, from the center to the periphery of the grains. There were signs of macrosegregation, from the base to the top of the ingots.

Comparative Dielectric Properties of 1,2-Dichloroethane with n-Methylformamide and n,n-Dimethylformamide Using Time Domain Reflectometry Technique in Microwave Frequency

The study of dielectric relaxation properties of polar liquids in the binary mixture has been carried out at 10, 15, 20 and 25 ºC temperatures for 11 different concentrations using time domain reflectometry technique. The dielectric properties of a solute-solvent mixture of polar liquids in the frequency range of 10 MHz to 30 GHz gives the information regarding formation of monomers and multimers and also an interaction between the molecules of the liquid mixture under study. The dielectric parameters have been obtained by the least squares fit method using the Debye equation characterized by a single relaxation time without relaxation time distribution.

Corrosion Evaluation of Zinc Coating Prepared by Two Types of Electric Currents

In this research, zinc coatings were fabricated by electroplating process in a sulfate solution under direct and pulse current conditions. In direct and pulse current conditions, effect of maximum current was investigated on the coating properties. Also a comparison was made between the obtained coatings under direct and pulse current. Morphology of the coatings was investigated by scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Corrosion behavior of the coatings was investigated by potentiodynamic polarization test. In pulse current conditions, the effect of pulse frequency and duty cycle was also studied. The effect of these conditions and parameters were also investigated on morphology and corrosion behavior. All of DC plated coatings are showing a distinct passivation area in -1 to -0.4 V range. Pulsed current coatings possessed a higher corrosion resistance. The results showed that current density is the most important factor regarding the fabrication process. Furthermore, a rise in duty cycle deteriorated corrosion resistance of coatings. Pulsed plated coatings performed almost 10 times better than DC plated coatings.

Impact of Welding Wire Nickel Plating Process Parameters on Ni Layer Thickness

The article presents part of research on the development of nickel plated welding wire production technology, whose application will enable the elimination of the flaws of currently manufactured welding wires. The nickel plated welding wire will be distinguished by high quality, because the Ni layer which is deposited electrochemically onto it from acid baths is characterized by very good adhesion to the steel wire surface, while the ductile nickel well deforms plastically in the drawing process and the adhesion of the Ni layer increases in the drawing process due to the occurring process of diffusion between the Ni and the steel. The Ni layer obtained in the proposed technology, despite a smaller thickness than when the wire is coated with copper, is continuous and tight, thus ensuring high corrosion resistance, as well as unsusceptible to scaling, which should provide a product that meets requirements imposed by the market. The product will also reduce, to some extent, the amount of copper brought in to steel through recycling, while the wire coating nickel introduced to the weld in the welding process is expected, to a degree, to favorably influence its mechanical properties. The paper describes the tests of the process of nickel plating of f1.96 mm-diameter wires using various nickel plating baths with different process parameters.

Corrosion Protection of Structural Steel by Surfactant Containing Reagents

The anti-corrosion performance of fatty acid coated mild steel samples is studied. Samples of structural steel coated with collector reagents deposited from surfactant in ethanol solution and overcoated with an epoxy barrier paint. A quantitative corrosion rate was determined by linear polarization resistance method using biopotentiostat/galvanostat 400. Coating morphology was determined by scanning electronic microscopy. A test for hydrophobic surface of steel by surfactant was done. From the samples, the main component or high content iron was determined by chemical method and other metal contents were determined by Inductively Coupled Plasma-Optical Emission Spectrometry (ICP-OES) method. Prior to measuring the corrosion rate, mechanical and chemical treatments were performed to prepare the test specimens. Overcoating the metal samples with epoxy barrier paint after exposing them with surfactant the corrosion rate can be inhibited by 34-35 µm/year.

Sustainable Hydrogel Nanocomposites Based on Grafted Chitosan and Clay for Effective Adsorption of Cationic Dye

Contamination of water, due to the discharge of untreated industrial wastewaters into the ecosystem, has become a serious problem for many countries. In this study, bioadsorbents based on chitosan-g-poly(acrylamide) and montmorillonite (MMt) clay (CTS-g-PAAm/MMt) hydrogel nanocomposites were prepared via free‐radical grafting copolymerization and crosslinking of acrylamide monomer (AAm) onto natural polysaccharide chitosan (CTS) as backbone, in presence of various contents of MMt clay as nanofiller. Then, they were hydrolyzed to obtain highly functionalized pH‐sensitive nanomaterials with uppermost swelling properties. Their structure characterization was conducted by X-Ray Diffraction (XRD) and Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) analyses. The adsorption performances of the developed nanohybrids were examined for removal of methylene blue (MB) cationic dye from aqueous solutions. The factors affecting the removal of MB, such as clay content, pH medium, adsorbent dose, initial dye concentration and temperature were explored. The adsorption process was found to be highly pH dependent. From adsorption kinetic results, the prepared adsorbents showed remarkable adsorption capacity and fast adsorption rate, mainly more than 88% of MB removal efficiency was reached after 50 min in 200 mg L-1 of dye solution. In addition, the incorporating of various content of clay has enhanced adsorption capacity of CTS-g-PAAm matrix from 1685 to a highest value of 1749 mg g-1 for the optimized nanocomposite containing 2 wt.% of MMt. The experimental kinetic data were well described by the pseudo-second-order model, while the equilibrium data were represented perfectly by Langmuir isotherm model. The maximum Langmuir equilibrium adsorption capacity (qm) was found to increase from 2173 mg g−1 until 2221 mg g−1 by adding 2 wt.% of clay nanofiller. Thermodynamic parameters revealed the spontaneous and endothermic nature of the process. In addition, the reusability study revealed that these bioadsorbents could be well regenerated with desorption efficiency overhead 87% and without any obvious decrease of removal efficiency as compared to starting ones even after four consecutive adsorption/desorption cycles, which exceeded 64%. These results suggest that the optimized nanocomposites are promising as low cost bioadsorbents.

A Study of the Alumina Distribution in the Lab-Scale Cell during Aluminum Electrolysis

The aluminum electrolysis process in the conventional cryolite-alumina electrolyte with cryolite ratio of 2.7 was carried out at an initial temperature of 970 °C and the anode current density of 0.5 A/cm2 in a 15A lab-scale cell in order to study the formation of the side ledge during electrolysis and the alumina distribution between electrolyte and side ledge. The alumina contained 35.97% α-phase and 64.03% γ-phase with the particles size in the range of 10-120 μm. The cryolite ratio and the alumina concentration were determined in molten electrolyte during electrolysis and in frozen bath after electrolysis. The side ledge in the electrolysis cell was formed only by the 13th hour of electrolysis. With a slight temperature decrease a significant increase in the side ledge thickness was observed. The basic components of the side ledge obtained by the XRD phase analysis were Na3AlF6, Na5Al3F14, Al2O3, and NaF.5CaF2.AlF3. As in the industrial cell, the increased alumina concentration in the side ledge formed on the cell walls and at the ledge-electrolyte-aluminum three-phase boundary during aluminum electrolysis in the lab cell was found (FTP No 05.604.21.0239, IN RFMEFI60419X0239).

Synthesis, Structure and Properties of NZP/NASICON Structured Materials

The purpose of this work was to synthesize and investigate phase formation, structure and thermophysical properties of the phosphates M0.5+xM'xZr2–x(PO4)3 (M – Cd, Sr, Pb; M' – Mg, Co, Mn). The compounds were synthesized by sol-gel method. The results showed formation of limited solid solutions of NZP/NASICON type. The crystal structures of triple phosphates of the compositions MMg0.5Zr1.5(PO4)3 were refined by the Rietveld method using XRD data. Heat capacity (8–660 K) of the phosphates Pb0.5+xMgxZr2-x(PO4)3 (x = 0, 0.5) was measured, and reversible polymorphic transitions were found at temperatures, close to the room temperature. The results of Rietveld structure refinement showed the polymorphism caused by disordering of lead cations in the cavities of NZP/NASICON structure. Thermal expansion (298−1073 K) of the phosphates MMg0.5Zr1.5(PO4)3 was studied by XRD method, and the compounds were found to belong to middle and low-expanding materials. Thermal diffusivity (298–573 K) of the ceramic samples of phosphates slightly decreased with temperature increasing. As was demonstrated, the studied phosphates are characterized by the better thermophysical characteristics than widespread fire-resistant materials, such as zirconia and etc.

Mechanical Properties of Powder Metallurgy Processed Biodegradable Zn-Based Alloy for Biomedical Application

Zinc is a non-ferrous metal with potential application in orthopaedic implant materials. However, its poor mechanical properties were major challenge to its application. Therefore, this paper studies the mechanical properties of biodegradable Zn-based alloy for biomedical application. Pure zinc powder with varying (0, 1, 2, 3 & 6) wt% of magnesium powders were ball milled using ball-to-powder ratio (B:P) of 10:1 at 350 rpm for 4 hours. The resulting milled powders were compacted and sintered at 300 MPa and 350 °C respectively. Microstructural, phase and mechanical properties analyses were performed following American standard of testing and measurement. The results show that magnesium has influence on the mechanical properties of zinc. The compressive strength, hardness and elastic modulus of 210 ± 8.878 MPa, 76 ± 5.707 HV and 45 ± 11.616 GPa respectively as obtained in Zn-2Mg alloy were optimum and meet the minimum requirement of biodegradable metal for orthopaedics application. These results indicate an increase of 111, 93 and 93% in compressive strength, hardness and elastic modulus respectively as compared to pure zinc. The increase in mechanical properties was adduced to effectiveness of compaction pressure and intermetallic phase formation within the matrix resulting in high dislocation density for improving strength. The study concluded that, Zn-2Mg alloy with optimum mechanical properties can therefore be considered a potential candidate for orthopaedic application.

HPTLC Fingerprint Profiling of Protorhus longifolia Methanolic Leaf Extract and Qualitative Analysis of Common Biomarkers

Protorhus longifolia is known as a medicinal plant that has been used traditionally to treat various ailments such as hemiplegic paralysis, blood clotting related diseases, diarrhoea, heartburn, etc. The study reports a High-Performance Thin Layer Chromatography (HPTLC) fingerprint profile of Protorhus longifolia methanolic extract and its qualitative analysis of gallic acid, rutin, and quercetin. HPTLC analysis was achieved using CAMAG HPTLC system equipped with CAMAG automatic TLC sampler 4, CAMAG Automatic Developing Chamber 2 (ADC2), CAMAG visualizer 2, CAMAG Thin Layer Chromatography (TLC) scanner and visionCATS CAMAG HPTLC software. Mobile phase comprising toluene, ethyl acetate, formic acid (21:15:3) was used for qualitative analysis of gallic acid and revealed eight peaks while the mobile phase containing ethyl acetate, water, glacial acetic acid, formic acid (100:26:11:11) for qualitative analysis of rutin and quercetin revealed six peaks. HPTLC sillica gel 60 F254 glass plates (10 × 10) were used as the stationary phase. Gallic acid was detected at the Rf = 0.35; while rutin and quercetin were not evident in the extract. Further studies will be performed to quantify gallic acid in Protorhus longifolia leaves and also identify other biomarkers.

Tensile Properties of Aluminum Silicon Nickel Iron Vanadium High Entropy Alloys

Pure metals are not used in most cases for structural applications because of their limited properties. Presently, high entropy alloys (HEAs) are emerging by mixing comparative proportions of metals with the aim of maximizing the entropy leading to enhancement in structural and mechanical properties. Aluminum Silicon Nickel Iron Vanadium (AlSiNiFeV) alloy was developed using stir cast technique and analysed. Results obtained show that the alloy grade G0 contains 44 percentage by weight (wt%) Al, 32 wt% Si, 9 wt% Ni, 4 wt% Fe, 3 wt% V and 8 wt% for minor elements with tensile strength and elongation of 106 Nmm-2 and 2.68%, respectively. X-ray diffraction confirmed intermetallic compounds having hexagonal closed packed (HCP), orthorhombic and cubic structures in cubic dendritic matrix. This affirmed transformation from the cubic structures of elemental constituents of the HEAs to the precipitated structures of the intermetallic compounds. A maximum tensile strength of 188 Nmm-2 with 4% elongation was noticed at 10wt% of silica addition to the G0. An increase in tensile strength with an increment in silica content could be attributed to different phases and crystal geometries characterizing each HEA.

Investigation of the Properties of Epoxy Modified Binders Based on Epoxy Oligomer with Improved Deformation and Strength Properties
The process of modification of ed-20 epoxy resin synthesized by vinyl-containing compounds is considered. It is shown that the introduction of vinyl-containing compounds into the composition based on epoxy resin ED-20 allows adjusting the technological and operational characteristics of the binder. For improvement of the properties of epoxy resin, following modifiers were selected: polyvinylformalethyl, polyvinyl butyral and composition of linear and aromatic amines (Аramine) as a hardener. Now the big range of hardeners of epoxy resins exists that allows varying technological properties of compositions, and also thermophysical and strength indicators. The nature of the aramin type hardener has a significant impact on the spatial parameters of the mesh, glass transition temperature, and strength characteristics. Epoxy composite materials based on ED-20 modified with polyvinyl butyral were obtained and investigated. It is shown that the composition of resins based on derivatives of polyvinyl butyral and ED-20 allows obtaining composite materials with a higher complex of deformation-strength, adhesion and thermal properties, better water resistance, frost resistance, chemical resistance, and impact strength. The magnitude of the effect depends on the chemical structure, temperature and curing time. In the area of concentrations, where the effect of composite synergy is appearing, the values of strength and stiffness significantly exceed the similar parameters of the individual components of the mixture. The polymer-polymer compositions form their class of materials with diverse specific properties that ensure their competitive application. Coatings with high performance under cyclic loading have been obtained based on epoxy oligomers modified with vinyl-containing compounds.
Electrochemical Response Transductions of Graphenated-Polyaniline Nanosensor for Environmental Anthracene
A graphenated–polyaniline (GR-PANI) nanocomposite sensor was constructed and used for the determination of anthracene. The direct electro-oxidation behavior of anthracene on the GR-PANI modified glassy carbon electrode (GCE) was used as the sensing principle. The results indicate thatthe response profile of the oxidation of anthracene on GR-PANI-modified GCE provides for the construction of sensor systems based onamperometric and potentiometric signal transductions. A dynamic linear range of 0.12- 100 µM anthracene and a detection limit of 0.044 µM anthracene were established for the sensor system.
Carbothermic Reduction of Phosphoric Acid Extracted from Dephosphorization Slags to Produce Yellow Phosphorus

Phosphorous is an important element for agriculture and industry and is a non-renewable resource. Especially, yellow phosphorus is an essential material in advanced industrial technology, but phosphorus resources were not produced in Japan at all, and all depend on imports. It has been suggested, however, that the remaining accessible reserves of phosphate ore will be depleted within 50 years. Therefore, alternative resources for phosphate ore must be found. In this research, we have developed a process that enables the production of high-purity yellow phosphorus from domestic unused phosphorus resources such as steelmaking slags. The process consists of two parts: (1) the production of crude phosphoric acid from wastes such as steelmaking slag; (2) producing high-purity yellow phosphorus by low-temperature carbothermic reduction of phosphoric acid (H3PO4). The details of the carbothermic reduction of phosphoric acid are presented in this paper. Yellow phosphorus is commercially produced by carbothermic reduction of phosphate ore in an electric arc furnace at more than 1673K. In the newly developed system, gaseous P4O10 evaporated from H3PO4 is successfully reduced to yellow phosphorus by using carbon packed bed at less than 1273K. To meet the depletion of phosphate ore, the proposed process in this study to produce yellow phosphorus by carbothermic reduction of H3PO4 that are extracted from dephosphorization slags will be one of the effective and economical solutions.

Comparing the Durability of Saudi Silica Sands for Use in Foundry Processing

This paper was developed to investigate two types of sands from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) for potential use in the global metal casting industry. Four types of sands were selected for study, two of the sand systems investigated are natural sands from the KSA. The third sand sample is a heat processed synthetic sand and the last sample is commercially available US silica sand that is used as a control in the study. The purpose of this study is to define the durability of the four sand systems selected for foundry usage. Additionally, chemical analysis of the sand systems is presented before and after elevated temperature exposure. Results show that Saudi silica sands are durable and can be used in foundry processing.

Development of a Real Time Axial Force Measurement System and IoT-Based Monitoring for Smart Bearing

The purpose of this research is to develop a real time axial force measurement system for a smart bearing through the use of strain-gauges, whereby the data acquisition is performed by an Arduino microcontroller due to its easy manipulation and low-cost. The measured signal is acquired and then discretized using a Wheatstone Bridge and an Analog-Digital Converter (ADC) respectively. For bearing monitoring, a real time monitoring system based on Internet of things (IoT) and Bluetooth were developed. Experimental tests were performed on a bearing within a force range up to 600 kN. The experimental results show that there is a proportional linear relationship between the applied force and the output voltage, and the error R squared is within 0.9878 based on the regression analysis.

Analysis of Structural and Photocatalytical Properties of Anatase, Rutile and Mixed Phase TiO2 Films Deposited by Pulsed-Direct Current and Radio Frequency Magnetron Co-Sputtering

Amongst many water purification techniques, TiO2 photocatalysis is recognized as one of the most promising sustainable methods. It is known that for photocatalytical applications anatase is the most suitable TiO2 phase, however heterojunction of anatase/rutile phases could improve the photocatalytical activity of TiO2 even further. Despite the relative simplicity of TiO2 different synthesis methods lead to the highly dispersed crystal phases and photocatalytic activity of the corresponding samples. Accordingly, suggestions and investigations of various innovative methods of TiO2 synthesis are still needed. In this work structural and photocatalytical properties of TiO2 films deposited by the unconventional method of simultaneous co-sputtering from two magnetrons powered by pulsed-Direct Current (pDC) and Radio Frequency (RF) power sources with negative bias voltage have been studied. More specifically, TiO2 film thickness, microstructure, surface roughness, crystal structure, optical transmittance and photocatalytical properties were investigated by profilometer, scanning electron microscope, atomic force microscope, X-ray diffractometer and UV-Vis spectrophotometer respectively. The proposed unconventional two magnetron co-sputtering based TiO2 film formation method showed very promising results for crystalline TiO2 film formation while keeping process temperatures below 100 °C. XRD analysis revealed that by using proper combination of power source type and bias voltage various TiO2 phases (amorphous, anatase, rutile or their mixture) can be synthesized selectively. Moreover, strong dependency between power source type and surface roughness, as well as between the bias voltage and band gap value of TiO2 films was observed. Interestingly, TiO2 films deposited by two magnetron co-sputtering without bias voltage had one of the highest band gap values between the investigated films but its photocatalytic activity was superior compared to all other samples. It is suggested that this is due to the dominating nanocrystalline anatase phase with various exposed surfaces including photocatalytically the most active {001}.

Effect of Particle Size on Alkali-Activation of Slag

In this study grinding experiments were performed in a laboratory ball mill using Polish ferronickel slag in order to study the effect of the particle size on alkali activation and the properties of the produced alkali activated materials (AAMs). In this regard, the particle size distribution and the specific surface area of the grinding products in relation to grinding time were assessed. The experimental results show that products with high compressive strength, e.g. higher than 60 MPa, can be produced when the slag median size decreased from 39.9 μm to 11.9 μm. Also, finer fractions are characterized by higher reactivity and result in the production of AAMs with lower porosity and better mechanical properties.

Development of AA2024 Matrix Composites Reinforced with Micro Yttrium through Cold Compaction with Superior Mechanical Properties

In this present work, five different composite samples with AA2024 as matrix and varying amounts of yttrium (0.1-0.5 wt.%) as reinforcement are developed through cold compaction. The microstructures of the developed composite samples revealed that the yttrium reinforcement caused grain refinement up to 0.3 wt.% and beyond which the refinement is not effective. The microstructure revealed Al2Cu precipitation which strengthened the composite up to 0.3 wt.% yttrium reinforcement. Upon further increase in yttrium reinforcement, the intermetallics and the precipitation coarsen and their corresponding strengthening effect decreases. The mechanical characterization revealed that the composite sample reinforced with 0.3 wt.% yttrium showed highest mechanical properties like 82 HV of hardness, 276 MPa Ultimate Tensile Strength (UTS), 229 MPa Yield Strength (YS) and an elongation (EL) of 18.9% respectively. However, the relative density of the developed composites decreased with the increase in yttrium reinforcement.

Investigation of Chip Formation Characteristics during Surface Finishing of HDPE Samples

Chip formation characteristics are investigated during surface finishing of high density polyethylene (HDPE) samples using a shaper machine. Both the cutting speed and depth of cut are varied continually to enable observations under various machining conditions. The generated chips are analyzed in terms of their shape, size, and deformation. Their physical appearances are also observed using digital camera and optical microscope. The investigation shows that continuous chips are obtained for all the cutting conditions. It is observed that cutting speed is more influential than depth of cut to cause dimensional changes of chips. Chips curl radius is also found to increase gradually with the increase of cutting speed. The length of continuous chips remains always smaller than the job length, and the corresponding discrepancies are found to be more prominent at lower cutting speed. Microstructures of the chips reveal that cracks are formed at higher cutting speeds and depth of cuts, which is not that significant at low depth of cut.

Machinability Analysis in Drilling Flax Fiber-Reinforced Polylactic Acid Bio-Composite Laminates

Interest in natural fiber-reinforced composites (NFRC) is progressively growing both in terms of academia research and industrial applications thanks to their abundant advantages such as low cost, biodegradability, eco-friendly nature and relatively good mechanical properties. However, their widespread use is still presumed as challenging because of the specificity of their non-homogeneous structure, limited knowledge on their machinability characteristics and parameter settings, to avoid defects associated with the machining process. The present work is aimed to investigate the effect of the cutting tool geometry and material on the drilling-induced delamination, thrust force and hole quality produced when drilling a fully biodegradable flax/poly (lactic acid) composite laminate. Three drills with different geometries and material were used at different drilling conditions to evaluate the machinability of the fabricated composites. The experimental results indicated that the choice of cutting tool, in terms of material and geometry, has a noticeable influence on the cutting thrust force and subsequently drilling-induced damages. The lower value of thrust force and better hole quality was observed using high-speed steel (HSS) drill, whereas Carbide drill (with point angle of 130o) resulted in the highest value of thrust force. Carbide drill presented higher wear resistance and stability in variation of thrust force with a number of holes drilled, while HSS drill showed the lower value of thrust force during the drilling process. Finally, within the selected cutting range, the delamination damage increased noticeably with feed rate and moderately with spindle speed.

Peculiarities of Internal Friction and Shear Modulus in 60Co γ-Rays Irradiated Monocrystalline SiGe Alloys

At present, a number of modern semiconductor devices based on SiGe alloys have been created in which the latest achievements of high technologies are used. These devices might cause significant changes to networking, computing, and space technology. In the nearest future new materials based on SiGe will be able to restrict the A3B5 and Si technologies and firmly establish themselves in medium frequency electronics. Effective realization of these prospects requires the solution of prediction and controlling of structural state and dynamical physical –mechanical properties of new SiGe materials. Based on these circumstances, a complex investigation of structural defects and structural-sensitive dynamic mechanical characteristics of SiGe alloys under different external impacts (deformation, radiation, thermal cycling) acquires great importance. Internal friction (IF) and shear modulus temperature and amplitude dependences of the monocrystalline boron-doped Si1-xGex(x≤0.05) alloys grown by Czochralski technique is studied in initial and 60Co gamma-irradiated states. In the initial samples, a set of dislocation origin relaxation processes and accompanying modulus defects are revealed in a temperature interval of 400-800 ⁰C. It is shown that after gamma-irradiation intensity of relaxation internal friction in the vicinity of 280 ⁰C increases and simultaneously activation parameters of high temperature relaxation processes reveal clear rising. It is proposed that these changes of dynamical mechanical characteristics might be caused by a decrease of the dislocation mobility in the Cottrell atmosphere enriched by the radiation defects.

Triple Intercell Bar for Electrometallurgical Processes: A Design to Increase PV Energy Utilization

PV energy prices are declining rapidly. To take advantage of the benefits of those prices and lower the carbon footprint, operational practices must be modified. Undoubtedly, it challenges the electrowinning practice to operate at constant current throughout the day. This work presents a technology that contributes in providing modulation capacity to the electrode current distribution system. This is to raise the day time dc current and lower it at night. The system is a triple intercell bar that operates in current-source mode. The design is a capping board free dogbone type of bar that ensures an operation free of short circuits, hot swapability repairs and improved current balance. This current-source system eliminates the resetting currents circulating in equipotential bars. Twin auxiliary connectors are added to the main connectors providing secure current paths to bypass faulty or impaired contacts. All system conductive elements are positioned over a baseboard offering a large heat sink area to the ventilation of a facility. The system works with lower temperature than a conventional busbar. Of these attributes, the cathode current balance property stands out and is paramount for day/night modulation and the use of photovoltaic energy. A design based on a 3D finite element method model predicting electric and thermal performance under various industrial scenarios is presented. Preliminary results obtained in an electrowinning facility with industrial prototypes are included.

Producing and Mechanical Testing of Urea-Formaldehyde Resin Foams Reinforced by Waste Phosphogypsum

Many of thermosetting resins have application only in filled state, reinforced with different mineral fillers. The co-filling of polymers with mineral filler and gases creates a possibility for production of polymer composites materials with low density. This processing leads to forming of new materials – gas-filled plastics (polymer foams). The properties of these materials are determined mainly by the shape and size of internal structural elements (pores). The interactions on the phase boundaries have influence on the materials properties too. In the present work, the gas-filled urea-formaldehyde resins were reinforced by waste phosphogypsum. The waste phosphogypsum (CaSO4.2H2O) is a solid by-product in wet phosphoric acid production processes. The values of the interactions polymer-filler were increased by using two modifying agents: polyvinyl acetate for polymer matrix and sodium metasilicate for filler. Technological methods for gas-filling and recipes of urea-formaldehyde based materials with apparent density 20-120 kg/m3 were developed. The heat conductivity of the samples is between 0.024 and 0.029 W/moK. Tensile analyses were carried out at 10 and 50% deformation and show values 0.01-0.14 MPa and 0.01-0.09 MPa, respectively. The apparent density of obtained materials is between 20 and 92 kg/m3. The changes in the tensile properties and density of these materials according to sodium metasilicate content were studied too. The mechanism of phosphogypsum adsorption modification was studied using methods of FT-IR spectroscopy. The structure of the gas-filled urea-formaldehyde resins was described by results of electron scanning microscopy at three different magnification ratios – x50, x150 and x 500. The aim of present work is to study the possibility of the usage of phosphogypsum as mineral filler for urea-formaldehyde resins and development of a technology for the production of gas-filled reinforced polymer composite materials. The structure and the properties of obtained composite materials are suitable for thermal and sound insulation applications.

Study of Structural and Electronic Properties of Ternary PdMnGe Half-Heusler Alloy

This study deals with the structural and electronic properties of ternary PdMnGe Half-Heusler alloy using the full potential linearized augmented plane wave (FP-LAPW) method based on the density functional theory (DFT) as implemented in the WIEN2k package, within the framework of generalized gradient approximation (GGA). Structural parameters, total and partial densities of states were also analyzed. The obtained result shows that the studied material is metallic in GGA treatment. The elastic constants (Cij) show that our compound is ductile, stiff and anisotropic.

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