Materials Science & Engineering Research Works

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Now showing 1 - 5 of 26
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    Molecular Theory of Detonation Initiation: Insight from First Principles Modeling of the Decomposition Mechanisms of Organic Nitro Energetic Materials
    (MDPI, 2016-02-19) Tsyshevsky, Roman V.; Sharia, Onise; Kuklja, Maija M.
    This review presents a concept, which assumes that thermal decomposition processes play a major role in defining the sensitivity of organic energetic materials to detonation initiation. As a science and engineering community we are still far away from having a comprehensive molecular detonation initiation theory in a widely agreed upon form. However, recent advances in experimental and theoretical methods allow for a constructive and rigorous approach to design and test the theory or at least some of its fundamental building blocks. In this review, we analyzed a set of select experimental and theoretical articles, which were augmented by our own first principles modeling and simulations, to reveal new trends in energetic materials and to refine known existing correlations between their structures, properties, and functions. Our consideration is intentionally limited to the processes of thermally stimulated chemical reactions at the earliest stage of decomposition of molecules and materials containing defects.
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    Photochemistry of the α-Al2O3-PETN Interface
    (MDPI, 2016-02-29) Tsyshevsky, Roman V.; Zverev, Anton; Mitrofanov, Anatoly; Rashkeev, Sergey N.; Kuklja, Maija M.
    Optical absorption measurements are combined with electronic structure calculations to explore photochemistry of an α-Al2O3-PETN interface formed by a nitroester (pentaerythritol tetranitrate, PETN, C5H8N4O12) and a wide band gap aluminum oxide (α-Al2O3) substrate. The first principles modeling is used to deconstruct and interpret the α-Al2O3-PETN absorption spectrum that has distinct peaks attributed to surface F0-centers and surface—PETN transitions. We predict the low energy α-Al2O3 F0-center—PETN transition, producing the excited triplet state, and α-Al2O3 F0-center—PETN charge transfer, generating the PETN anion radical. This implies that irradiation by commonly used lasers can easily initiate photodecomposition of both excited and charged PETN at the interface. The feasible mechanism of the photodecomposition is proposed.
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    A Review of Metastable Beta Titanium Alloys
    (MDPI, 2018-06-30) Kolli, R. Prakash; Devaraj, Arun
    In this article, we provide a broad and extensive review of beta titanium alloys. Beta titanium alloys are an important class of alloys that have found use in demanding applications such as aircraft structures and engines, and orthopedic and orthodontic implants. Their high strength, good corrosion resistance, excellent biocompatibility, and ease of fabrication provide significant advantages compared to other high performance alloys. The body-centered cubic (bcc) β-phase is metastable at temperatures below the beta transus temperature, providing these alloys with a wide range of microstructures and mechanical properties through processing and heat treatment. One attribute important for biomedical applications is the ability to adjust the modulus of elasticity through alloying and altering phase volume fractions. Furthermore, since these alloys are metastable, they experience stress-induced transformations in response to deformation. The attributes of these alloys make them the subject of many recent studies. In addition, researchers are pursuing development of new metastable and near-beta Ti alloys for advanced applications. In this article, we review several important topics of these alloys including phase stability, development history, thermo-mechanical processing and heat treatment, and stress-induced transformations. In addition, we address recent developments in new alloys, phase stability, superelasticity, and additive manufacturing.
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    Effect of Irradiation and Detection of Long-Lived Polyenyl Radicals in Highly Crystalline Ultra-High Molar Mass Polyethylene (UHMMPE) Fibers
    (MDPI, 2019-05-27) Forster, Amanda L.; Tsinas, Zois; Al-Sheikhly, Mohamad
    To improve properties such as thermal conductivity, low temperature thermal strain, and creep resistance of ultra-high molar mass polyethylene (UHMMPE) fibers, several researchers have previously undertaken efforts to crosslink these fibers using radiation. Ionizing radiation is commonly used to crosslink bulk UHMMPE in other applications, such as artificial joints. However, UHMMPE fibers differ from bulk UHMMPE in that they have a higher crystallinity (approximately 85% to 90%) and are very highly oriented during manufacturing in which the fibers are stretched 50 to 100 times their original length. Thus, the amorphous fraction of the UHMMPE fibers is also highly ordered. Several experiments were conducted to crosslink the UHMMPE fibers using both low dose rate (gamma) and high dose rate (electron beam) irradiation, all in the absence of oxygen. In all cases, the tensile strength of the fiber was greatly reduced by the irradiation. The oxidation index was also measured for the irradiated samples, and oxidation was not found to play a major role in the reduction of tensile strength in the fibers after irradiation. While this work did not achieve the desired result of improving the mechanical properties of the UHMMPE fiber, a significant result was found. The electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectrum of the UHMMPE fibers was measured shortly after irradiation, and a mixture of allyl and alkyl radicals were detected. The irradiated samples were stored in dark ambient conditions for at least six years, then reexamined using EPR for free radical characterization. Surprisingly, the gamma-irradiated samples showed clear evidence of long-lived polyenyl radicals present in the material. Free radicals are very reactive species that will typically migrate to the surface of the crystalline domain and decay in a relatively short time through various reactions in the amorphous regions. It is hypothesized herein that due to the high crystallinity and large anisotropy of the highly drawn UHMMPE fiber, the polyenyl radicals were trapped in the crystal phase and were unable to migrate and decay. An experiment was performed to test this hypothesis, by which samples of the irradiated fibers were heated to temperatures above first the alpha relaxation and then melting point of polyethylene, and EPR measurements were taken. Results showed that the polyenyl radical signal persisted below the Tm, but was rapidly eliminated upon melting of the crystals. These experiments support the hypothesis that the long-lived polyenyl radicals are trapped in the crystalline region of the polyethylene fibers.
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    Cellulose Nanocomposites of Cellulose Nanofibers and Molecular Coils
    (MDPI, 2021-07-30) Henderson, Doug; Zhang, Xin; Mao, Yimin; Hu, Liangbing; Briber, Robert M.; Wang, Howard
    All-cellulose nanocomposites have been produced from cellulose nanofiber (CNF) suspensions and molecular coil solutions. Morphology and small-angle neutron scattering studies show the exfoliation and dispersion of CNFs in aqueous suspensions. Cellulose solutions in mixtures of ionic liquid and organic solvents were homogeneously mixed with CNF suspensions and subsequently dried to yield cellulose composites comprising CNF and amorphous cellulose over the entire composition range. Tensile tests show that stiffness and strength quantities of cellulose nanocomposites are the highest value at ca. 20% amorphous cellulose, while their fracture strain and toughness are the lowest. The inclusion of amorphous cellulose in cellulose nanocomposites alters their water uptake capacity, as measured in the ratio of the absorbed water to the cellulose mass, reducing from 37 for the neat CNF to less than 1 for a composite containing 35% or more amorphous cellulose. This study offers new insights into the design and production of all-cellulose nanocomposites.