Gold functionalized graphene oxide (GOAu) nanoparticles were reinforced in acrylonitrilebutadiene rubbers (NBR) via solution and melt mixing methods. The synthesized NBR-GOAu nanocomposites have shown significant improvements in their rate of curing, mechanical strength, thermal stability and electrical properties. The homogeneous dispersion of GOAu nanoparticles in NBR has been considered responsible for the enhanced thermal conductivity, thermal stability, and mechanical properties of NBR nanocomposites. In addition, the NBR-GOAu nanocomposites were able to show a decreasing trend in their dielectric constant (ε´) and electrical resistance on straining within a range of 10–70%. The decreasing trend in ε´ is attributed to the decrease in electrode and interfacial polarization on straining the nanocomposites. The decreasing trend in electrical resistance in the nanocomposites is likely due to the attachment of Au nanoparticles to the surface of GO sheets which act as electrical interconnects. The Au nanoparticles have been proposed to function as ball rollers in-between GO nanosheets to improve their sliding on each other and to improve contacts with neighboring GO nanosheets, especially on straining the nanocomposites. The NBR-GOAu nanocomposites have exhibited piezoelectric gauge factor (GFε´) of ~0.5, and piezo-resistive gauge factor (GFR) of ~0.9 which clearly indicated that GOAu reinforced NBR nanocomposites are potentially useful in fabrication of structural, high temperature responsive, and stretchable strain-sensitive sensors.
Electrochemical properties and performance of composites performed by incorporating metal oxide or metal hydroxide on carbon materials based on graphene and carbon nanotube (CNT) were analyzed. From the surface analysis by field emission scanning electron microscopy and field emission transmission electron microscopy, it was confirmed that graphene, CNT and metal materials are well dispersed in the ternary composites. In addition, structural and elemental analyses of the composite were conducted. The electrochemical characteristics of the ternary composites were analyzed by cyclic voltammetry, galvanostatic charge-discharge tests, and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy in 6 M KOH, or 1 M Na2SO4 electrolyte solution. The highest specific capacitance was 1622 F g–1 obtained for NiCo-containing graphene with NiCo ratio of 2 to 1 (GNiCo 2:1) and the GNS/single-walled carbon nanotubes/Ni(OH)2 (20 wt%) composite had the maximum specific capacitance of 1149 F g–1. The specific capacitance and rate-capability of the CNT/MnO2/reduced graphene oxide (RGO) composites were improved as compared to the MnO2/RGO composites without CNTs. The MnO2/RGO composite containing 20 wt% CNT with reference to RGO exhibited the best specific capacitance of 208.9 F g–1 at a current density of 0.5 A g–1 and 77.2% capacitance retention at a current density of 10 A g–1.
In this study, a thermal-gradient chemical vapor infiltration (TG-CVI) process was numerically studied in order to enhance the deposition uniformity within the preform. The computational fluid dynamics technique was used to solve the governing equations for heat transfer and gas flow during the TG-CVI process for two- and three-dimensional (2-D and 3-D) models. The temperature profiles in the 2-D and 3-D models showed good agreement with each other and with the experimental results. The densification process was investigated in a 2-D axisymmetric model. Computation results showed the distribution of the SiC deposition rate within the preform. The results also showed that using two-zone heater gave better deposition uniformity.
Activated carbon (AC) was modified by ammonium persulphate or nitric acid, respectively. AC and the modified materials were used as catalyst supports. The oxygen groups were introduced in the supports during the modifications. All the supports were characterized by N2-physisorption, Raman, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and thermogravimetric analysis. Methanol synthesis catalysts were prepared through wet impregnation of copper nitrate and zinc nitrate on the supports followed by thermal decomposition. These catalysts were measured by the means of N2-physisorption, X-ray diffraction, XPS, temperature programmed reduction and TEM tests. The catalytic performances of the prepared catalysts were compared with a commercial catalyst (CZA) in this work. The results showed that the methanol production rate of AC-CZ (23 mmol- CH3OH/(g-Cu·h)) was higher, on Cu loading basis, than that of CZA (9 mmol-CH3OH/ (g-Cu·h)). We also found that the modification methods produced strong metal-support interactions leading to poor catalytic performance. AC without any modification can prompt the catalytic performance of the resulted catalyst.
This study suggests the novel thermoplastic toughening agent, which can be applied in the monomer forms without increasing the viscosity of the epoxy resin and polymerized during the resin curing. The diazide (p-BAB) and dialkyne (SPB) compounds are synthesized and mixed with the epoxy resin and the carbon fiber reinforced epoxy composites are prepared using vacuum infusion process (VIP). Then, flexural and drop weight tests are performed to evaluate the improvement in the toughness of the prepared composites to investigate the potential of the novel toughening agent. When 10 phr of p-BAB and SPB is added, the flexural properties are improved, maintaining the modulus as well as the toughness is improved. Even with a small amount of polytriazolesulfone polymerized, due to the filtering effect of the solid SPB by the layered carbon fabrics during the VIP, the toughening and strengthening effect were observed from the novel toughening agent, which could be added in monomer forms, p-BAB and SPB. This suggests that the novel toughening agent has a potential to be used for the composites prepared from viscosity sensitive process, such as resin transfer molding and VIP.
Large-size graphene samples are successfully prepared by combining ultrosonic assisted liquid phase exfoliation process with oxidation-deoxidation method. Different from previous works, we used an ultrasound-treated expanded graphite as the raw material and prepared the graphene via a facile oxidation-reduction reaction. Results of X-ray diffraction and Raman spectroscopy confirm the crystal structure of the as-prepared graphene. Scanning electron microscopy images show that this kind of graphene has a large size (with a diameter over 100 μm), larger than the graphene from graphite powder and flake graphite prepared through single oxidation-deoxidation method. Transmission electron microscopy results also reveal the thin layers of the prepared graphene (number of layers ≤3). Furthermore, the importance of preprocessing the raw materials is also proven. Therefore, this method is an attractive way for preparing graphene with large size.
Carbon chain inserted carbon nanotubes (CNTs) have been experimentally proven having undergone pronounced property change in terms of electrical conductivity compared with pure CNTs. This paper simulates the geometry of carbon chain inserted CNTs and analyzes the mechanism for conductivity change after insertion of carbon chain. The geometric simulation of Pt doped CNT was also implemented for comparison with the inserted one. The results indicate that both modification by Pt atom on the surface of CNT and addition of carbon chain in the channel of the tube are effective methods for transforming the electrical properties of the CNT, leading to the redistribution of electron and thereby causing the conductivity change in obtained configurations. All the calculations were obtained based on density functional theory method.
In the present work, capability of thymolphthalein-grafted graphene oxide, which was successfully synthesized in this study, in stabilization of polypropylene against thermal oxidation were investigated and compared with that of SONGNOX 1010, a commercially used phenolic antioxidant for the polymer. The modified graphene oxide were incorporated into polypropylene via melt mixing. State of distribution of the nanoplatelets in the polymer matrix was examined using scanning electron microscopy and was shown to be homogeneous. Measurements of oxidation onset temperature and oxidative induction time revealed that thymolphthalein-grafted graphene oxide modifies thermo-oxidative stability of the polymer in the melt state remarkably. However, the efficiency of the nanoplatelets in stabilization of polypropylene against thermal oxidation in melt state was shown to be inferior to that of SONGNOX 1010. Furthermore, oven ageing experiments followed by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy showed that the modified graphene oxide improves thermo-oxidative stability of the polymer strongly in the solid state, so that its stabilization efficiency is comparable to that of SONGNOX 1010.
Soybean straw (SS)-based activated carbon was employed as a precursor to prepare carbon molecular sieves (CMSs) via chemical vapor deposition (CVD) technique using methane as carbon source. Prior to the CVD process, SS was activated by 0.5 wt% ZnCl2, followed by a carbonization at 500°C for 1 h in N2 atmosphere. N2 (77 K) adsorption-desorption and CO2 (273 K) adsorption tests were carried out to analyze the pore structure of the prepared CMSs. The results show that increasing the deposition temperature, time or methane flow rate leads the decrease in N2 adsorption capacity, micropore volume and average pore diameter of CMSs. The adsorption selectivity coefficient of CO2/CH4 achieves as high as 20.8 over CMSs obtained under the methane flow rate of 30 mL min–1 at 800°C for 70 min. The study demonstrates the prepared CMSs are a candidate adsorbent for CO2/CH4 separation.
Pyrolyzed fuel oil (PFO) and coal tar was blended in the feedstock to produce pitch via thermal reaction. The blended feedstock and produced pitch were characterized to investigate the effect of the blending ratio. In the feedstock analysis, coal tar exhibited a distinct distribution in its boiling point related to the number of aromatic rings and showed higher Conradson carbon residue and aromaticity values of 26.6% and 0.67%, respectively, compared with PFO. The pitch yield changed with the blending ratio, while the softening point of the produced pitch was determined by the PFO ratio in the blends. On the other hand, the carbon yield increased with increasing coal tar ratio in the blends. This phenomenon indicated that the formation of aliphatic bridges in PFO may occur during the thermal reaction, resulting in an increased softening point. In addition, it was confirmed that the molecular weight distribution of the produced pitch was associated with the predominant feedstock in the blend.
At present, an important research area is the search for materials that are compatible with CMOS technology and achieve a satisfactory response rate and modulation efficiency. A strong local field of graphene surface plasmon polariton (SPP) can increase the interaction between light and graphene, reduce device size, and facilitate the integration of materials with CMOS. In this study, we design a new modulator of SPP-based cycle branch graphene waveguide. The structure comprises a primary waveguide of graphene–LiNbO3–graphene, and a secondary cycle branch waveguide is etched on the surface of LiNbO3. Part of the incident light in the primary waveguide enters the secondary waveguide, thus leading to a phase difference with the primary waveguide as reflected at the end of the branch and interaction coupling to enhance output light intensity. Through feature analysis, we discover that the area of the secondary waveguide shows significant localized fields and SPPs. Moreover, the cycle branch graphene waveguide can realize gain compensation, reduce transmission loss, and increase transmission distance. Numerical simulations show that the minimum effective mode field area is about 0.0130l2, the gain coefficient is about 700 cm–1, and the quality factor can reach 150. The structure can realize the mode field limits of deep subwavelength and achieve a good comprehensive performance.
In this study, we tried to prepare an isotropic spinnable pitch which can be useful to prepare the general purpose carbon fiber through the co-carbonization of biomass tar with ethylene bottom oil under two different preparation methods (atmospheric distillation, pressurized distillation). The results showed that the ethylene bottom oil added co-carbonization was very effective to decrease of the oxygen contents for obtaining a stable spinnable pitch. The pressurized distillation was more effective to reduce the oxygen functional groups of pitches than atmospheric distillation. The obtained spinnable pitch by the pressurized distillation showed higher pitch yield of 42% and lower oxygen content of 9.12% than the spinnable pitch by the atmospheric distillation. The carbon fiber derived from the pressurized distillation spinnable pitch by carbonization at 800ºC for 5 min showed that the higher tensile strength of carbon fiber was increased up to 800 MPa.
We examined the pressure effects on petroleum pitch synthesis by using open and closed reaction systems. The pressure effects that occur during the pitch synthesis were investigated in three pressure systems: a closed system of high pressure and two open systems under either an atmosphere or vacuum. A thermal reaction in the closed system led to the high product yield of a pitch by suppressing the release of light components in pyrolysis fuel oil. Atmospheric treatment mainly enhanced the polymerization degree of the pitch via condensation and a polymerization reaction. Vacuum treatment results in a softening point increase due to the removal of components with low molecular weights. To utilize such characteristic effects of system pressure during pitch preparations, we proposed a method for synthesizing cost-competitive pitch precursors for carbon materials. The first step is to increase product yield by using a closed system; the second step is to increase the degree of polymerization toward the desired molecular distribution, followed by the use of vacuum treatment to adjust softening points. Thus, we obtained an experimental quinoline insolubles-free pitch of product yield over 45% with softening points of approximately 130°C. The proposed method shows the possibility to prepare cost-competitive pitch precursors for carbon materials by enhancing product yield and other properties.
Hierarchically porous, chemically activated carbon materials are readily derived from biomass using hydrothermal carbonization (HTC) and chemical activation processes. In this study, empty fruit bunches (EFB) were chosen as the carbon source due to their sustainability, high lignin-content, abundance, and low cost. The lignin content in the EFB was condensed and carbonized into a bulk non-porous solid via the HTC process, and then transformed into a hierarchical porous structure consisting of macro- and micropores by chemical activation. As confirmed by various characterization results, the optimum activation temperature for supercapacitor applications was determined to be 700°C. The enhanced capacitive performance is attributed to the textural property of the extremely high specific surface area of 2861.4 m2 g–1. The prepared material exhibited hierarchical porosity and surface features with oxygen functionalities, such as carboxyl and hydroxyl groups, suitable for pseudocapacitance. Finally, the as-optimized nanoporous carbons exhibited remarkable capacitive performance, with a specific capacitance of 402.3 F g–1 at 0.5 A g–1, a good rate capability of 79.8% at current densities from 0.5 A g–1 to 10 A g–1, and excellent life cycle behavior of 10,000 cycles with 96.5% capacitance retention at 20 A g–1.