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2019


High-performance and low-cost macroporous calcium oxide based materials for thermochemical energy storage in concentrated solar power plants


Jimenez, PES; Perejon, A; Guerrero, MB; Valverde, JM; Ortiz, C; Maqueda, LAP
Applied Energy, 235 (2019) 543-552

ABSTRACT

High energy density, cycling stability, low cost and scalability are the main features required for thermochemical energy storage systems to achieve a feasible integration in Concentrating Solar Power plants (CSP). While no system has been found to fully satisfy all these requirements, the reversible CaO/CaCO3 carbonation reaction (CaL) is one of the most promising since CaO natural precursors are affordable and earth-abundant. However, CaO particles progressively deactivate due to sintering-induced morphological changes during repeated carbonation and calcinations cycles. In this work, we have prepared acicular calcium and magnesium acetate precursors using a simple, cost-effective and easily scalable technique that requires just the natural minerals and acetic acid, thereby avoiding expensive reactants and environmentally unfriendly solvents. Upon thermal decomposition, these precursors yield a stable porous structure comprised of well dispersed MgO nanoparticles coating the CaO/CaCO3 grains that is resistant to pore-plugging and sintering while at the same time exhibits high long term effective conversion. Process simulations show that the employment of these materials could significantly improve the overall CSP-CaL efficiency at the industrial level.


Febrero, 2019 | DOI: 10.1016/j.apenergy.2018.10.131

Multicycle CO2 capture activity and fluidizability of Al-based synthesized CaO sorbents


Azimi, B; Tahmasebpoor, M; Sanchez-Jimenez, PE; Perejon, A; Valverde, JM
Chemical Engineering Journal, 358 (2019) 679-690

ABSTRACT

CaO-based materials have been identified as promising sorbents for highly efficient pre-combustion and post-combustion CO2 capture in fluidized beds operated at high temperatures by means of the Calcium Looping (CaL) process. However, Ca-based sorbents suffer from a decline of the capture capacity over multiple sorption/desorption cycles, mainly due to sintering, and from a markedly heterogeneous fluidization behavior due to the strength of interparticle attractive forces as compared to particle weight. The present study is focused on the development of novel synthetic CaO/Al2O3 sorbents for CO2capture with enhanced CaL performance and fluidizability by dry mixing with flow conditioner nanopowders. The influence of initial precursors on the sorbents multicycle activity at realistic CaL conditions has been investigated. The formation of a stable Ca9Al6O18 mixed-phase during the preparation of the sorbents promotes the multicycle capture capacity. The type of Ca and Al precursors, either soluble or insoluble, can significantly affect the dispersion of this stabilizer (Ca9Al6O18) in the sorbent matrix and, consequently, may affect the carbonation activity of the materials. The sorbent prepared from soluble aluminum nitrate and calcium nitrate precursors by sol-gel method exhibits a very stable multicycle capture capacity with a capture capacity around 0.2 g of CO2/g of sorbent after 21 cycles keeping a 72% of its initial capture capacity. The fluidizability of this promising sorbent was also investigated as affected by the addition of three different flow conditioners. Fluidization experiments confirmed the positive effect of using hydrophilic alumina and hydrophobic silica nanoparticles on improving the fluidizability of the synthesized sorbents.


Febrero, 2019 | DOI: 10.1016/j.cej.2018.10.061

Study of the Interface of the Early Stages of Growth under Quasi-Equilibrium Conditions of ZnO on Graphene/Cu and Graphite


Morales, C; Black, A; Urbanos, FJ; Granados, D; Mendez, J; del Campo, A; Yubero, F; Soriano, L
Advanced Materials Interfaces, 6 (2019) art. 1801689

ABSTRACT

The study of the early stages of growth of ZnO on graphene supported on Cu and on highly oriented pyrolytic graphite by means of reactive thermal evaporation of metallic Zn at room temperature is presented. This growth method allows to go in depth in the study of the fundamental interaction between ZnO and graphene at the interface in quasi-equilibrium conditions. Quantitative, chemical, and morphological analysis is performed using photoemission spectroscopy, atomic force, and scanning microscopies as experimental characterization techniques and factor analysis and inelastic peak shape analysis as modeling techniques. The growth of ZnO on a highly oriented pyrolytic graphite substrate is also studied using the same growth method for comparison. The results show that, in spite that the first atomic layer of both substrates is identical, the growth kinetics and morphology of the deposits are completely different. A model for the kinetics of the growth of ZnO on both substrates is proposed.


Febrero, 2019 | DOI: 10.1002/admi.201801689

Environmentally Tight TiO2-SiO2 Porous 1D-Photonic Structures


Garcia-Valenzuela, A; Lopez-Santos, C; Rico, V; Alvarez, R; Palmero, A; Gonzalez-Elipe, AR
Advanced Materials Interfaces, 6 (2019) art. 1801212

ABSTRACT

Although thin film porosity is the basis of many optical sensors, it can be deleterious for a stable optical behavior of passive optical elements due to the condensation of water and other vapors in their pores. This paper proposes a new strategy for the magnetron sputtering (MS) fabrication of environmentally tight SiO2-TiO2 porous multilayers. Thin films of these two oxides deposited in an oblique angle configuration (MS-OAD) present a nanocolumnar and highly porous nanostructure and, as a consequence, experience significant changes in their optical properties when exposed to water vapor. Similarly, the optical properties of Bragg reflectors and Bragg microcavities made of the stacking of porous and compact SiO2 and TiO2 thin films experience reversible changes when these 1D-photonic structures are exposed to water pressure. A key finding of this work is that a very thin capping layer of SiO2 deposited on the surface of porous SiO2 films in the stack, at the interlayer between the two oxides, efficiently seals the pores making the photonic structures environmentally tight. This capping layer approach is a useful strategy to incorporate porosity as an additional parameter to design the optical behavior of planar photonic structures while preserving optical and environmental stability.


Febrero, 2019 | DOI: 10.1002/admi.201801212

Tailoring the Band Gap in the ZnS/ZnSe System: Solid Solutions by a Mechanically Induced Self-Sustaining Reaction


Aviles, MA; Cordoba, JM; Sayagues, MJ; Gotor, FJ
Inorganic Chemistry, 58 (2019) 2565-2575

ABSTRACT

The complete ZnSxSe1-x solid solution was successfully obtained by the mechanochemical process denoted as a mechanically induced self-sustaining reaction. Excellent control of the chemical stoichiometry of the solid solution was possible by adjusting the atomic ratio of the starting Zn/S/Se elemental mixture subjected to milling. A mixture of both wurtzite-2H (hexagonal) and zinc blende (cubic) structures was always obtained, although for a similar milling time the proportion of the zinc blende structure increased with the Se content in the solid solution. However, wurtzite was the major phase for S-rich compositions when milling was stopped just after ignition. It was demonstrated that milling induces the wurtzite-to-zinc blende phase transition. The 8H hexagonal polytype was also observed in samples subjected to long milling times. Variation of the lattice parameters for both structures with the x value in the solid solution presented an excellent linearity, confirming the validity of Vegard's law. However, variation of the band-gap energy (E-g) with x was not perfectly linear, and a small bowing parameter of 0.34 was obtained. It was possible to tune the E-g value between those of the end members of the solid solution in a continuous manner by adjusting the stoichiometry of the solid solution. The morphology and crystalline domain size can also be controlled by adjusting, in this case, the postignition milling time of the mechanochemical process.


Febrero, 2019 | DOI: 10.1021/acs.inorgchem.8b03183

Photodegradation of 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid over TiO2(B)/anatase nanobelts and Au-TiO2(B)/anatase nanobelts


Chenchana, A.; Nemamcha, A.; Moumeni, H.; Doña Rodríguez, J.M.; Araña, J.; Navío, J.A.; González Díaz, O.; Pulido Melián, E.
Applied Surface Science, 467-468 (2019) 1076-1087

ABSTRACT

In this work, novel TiO2-based nanobelts with various phases were synthesized: biphasic TiO2(B)/anatase, pure TiO2(B) and pure anatase. These catalysts were obtained via hydrothermal reaction using two nanoparticulated TiO2 photocatalysts as precursors: Aeroxide TiO2 P25 (P25) and TiO2 synthesized via a sol-gel process (SG). In addition, the surface of the photocatalysts was modified with gold using a photodeposition method. A characterization study of the different photocatalysts was performed with X-ray diffraction analysis (XRD), UV–Vis diffuse reflectance spectra (DRS), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), X-ray photoelectron spectrum analysis (XPS) and Brunauer-Emmett-Teller measurements (BET). The photocatalytic reaction of the herbicide 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D) was investigated under UVA irradiation. A toxicity analysis was performed with the marine bioluminescent bacteria Vibrio fischeri. The highest 2,4-D removal efficiency of 99.2% was obtained with the biphasic Au-TiO2(TiO2(B)/anatase) nanobelts with anatase as predominant phase. Toxicity was mainly due to the intermediate 2,4-dichlorophenol (2,4-DCP) which was eliminated in 4 h. The TiO2 nanobelt phase structure is shown to have a significant effect on photocatalytic activity.


Febrero, 2019 | DOI: 10.1016/j.apsusc.2018.10.175

Fluorinated and Platinized Titania as Effective Materials in the Photocatalytic Treatment of Dyestuffs and Stained Wastewater Coming from Handicrafts Factories


Murcia, J.J.; Cely, A.C.; Rojas, H.A.; Hidalgo, M.C.; Navío, J.A.
Catalysts, 9 (2019) 179

ABSTRACT

In this study, commercial and lab-prepared TiO2 were modified by fluorination and platinum photodeposition; and the effect of these modifications over the physicochemical and photocatalytic properties of TiO2 was evaluated. It was found that F and Pt addition leads to the modification of the optical and textural properties of TiO2. The materials prepared were tested in the photocatalytic degradation of different organic dyestuffs such as methylene blue (MB) and methyl orange (MO); the degradation of commercial anilines employed in the staining of natural fibers was also evaluated. Photocatalysis was also studied in this work as an eco-friendly treatment of wastewater coming from handicrafts factories. In general it was observed that the effectiveness of the photocatalytic treatment strongly depends on the substrate to be degraded, thus, fluorinated and platinized commercial Titania (Pt-F-P25) showed the best photocatalytic performance in the MB and MO photodegradation and in contrast, in the case of the anilines the highest degradation was obtained over commercial TiO2 fluorinated (F-P25). These results can be explained by differences observed in the structure and in the adsorption of these dyestuffs over the photocatalysts surfaces. F-P25 photocatalyst also demonstrated to be the best material for the treatment of real wastewater coming from handicrafts factories.


Febrero, 2019 | DOI: 10.3390/catal9020179

Synthesis of a cubic Ti(BCN) advanced ceramic by a solid-gas mechanochemical reaction


Chicardi, E; Garcia-Garrido, C; Beltran, AM; Sayagues, MJ; Gotor, FJ
Ceramics International, 45 (2019) 3878-3885

ABSTRACT

In this work, a titanium boron carbonitride advanced ceramic was successfully synthesised by a solid-gas mechanochemical reaction in a planetary ball mill from a mixture of elemental Ti, B, and C under nitrogen atmosphere. This material, with a general formula of Ti(BCN), exhibits a face-centred cubic structure (NaCl type) that is analogous to Ti(CN). This phase was gradually formed with sufficient milling time as a result of diffusional processes, which were permitted by the reduction of the energy in the system caused by the decrease in the spinning rate of the planetary ball mill. In contrast, under more energetic milling conditions, a mechanically induced self-sustaining reaction (MSR) took place, leading to the formation of a TiB2-Ti(CN) ceramic composite. The microstructural characterisation revealed that Ti(BCN) was composed of ceramic particles constituted of misoriented nanocrystalline domains. B, C and N were optimally distributed in the Ti(BCN) phase. The TiB2-Ti (CN) ceramic composite was composed of micrometric and nanometric particles homogeneously distributed. Additionally, the nitrogen content obtained for Ti(BCN) was higher than for the Ti(CN) phase in the composite material.


Febrero, 2019 | DOI: 10.1016/j.ceramint.2018.11.060

Insight into the BiFeO3 flash sintering process by in-situ energy dispersive X-ray diffraction (ED-XRD)


Perez-Maqueda, LA; Gil-Gonzalez, E; Wassel, MA; Jha, SK; Perejon, A; Charalambous, H; Okasinski, J; Sanchez-Jimenez, PE; Tsakalakos, T
Ceramics International, 45 (2019) 2828-2834

ABSTRACT

The sintering mechanism of BiFeO3 has been investigated in-situ by energy dispersive X-ray diffraction (ED-XRD) using a high-energy white collimated X-ray beam from the Advanced Photon Source (Argonne National Laboratories). Such radiation is very penetrating thereby allowing measurements of the sample even when placed inside the flash sintering set up. Additionally, the fast ED-XRD measurements permit monitoring the flash sintering process by providing information about phase composition and sample temperature in real time. Moreover, profile scans, obtained by moving the stage vertically while recording the ED-XRD spectra, permit investigating the homogeneity of the flash for the entire length of the sample. All experiments have been complemented by ex-situ studies. It has been concluded that flash sintering of BiFeO3 is a homogeneous process without any directionality effects. Furthermore, flash sintering takes place at quite low temperatures (below the Tc ≈ 830 °C), which may be related to the high quality of the samples, as pure, highly insulating ceramics without evidence of secondary phases with a homogenous nanostructured grain size distribution are obtained by this technique. Moreover, it is also evidenced that the rapid heating of the sample does not seem to justify, at least by itself, the densification process. Therefore, it appears that the electric current should play a role in the enhanced mobility during the sintering process.


Febrero, 2019 | DOI: 10.1016/j.ceramint.2018.07.293

Urban wastewater treatment by using Ag/ZnO and Pt/TiO2 photocatalysts


J.J. Murcia, L.G. Arias Bolivar, H.A. Rojas Sarmiento, E.G. Ávila Martínez, C. Jaramillo Páez, M.A. Lara, J.A. Navío Santos, M.C. Hidalgo López
Environmental Science and Pollution Research (2018) 1-9

ABSTRACT

In this study, the treatment of wastewater coming from a river highly polluted with domestic and industrial effluents was evaluated. For this purpose, series of photocatalysts obtained by ZnO and TiO2 modification were evaluated. The effect of metal addition and Ti precursor (in the case of the titania series) over the physicochemical and photocatalytic properties of the materials obtained was also analyzed. The evaluation of the photocatalytic activity showed that semiconductor modification and precursor used in the materials synthesis are important factors influencing the physicochemical and therefore the photocatalytic properties of the materials obtained. The water samples analyzed in the present work were taken from a highly polluted river, and it was found that the effectiveness of the photocatalytic treatment increases when the reaction time increases and for both, wastewater samples and isolated Escherichia coli strain follow the next order Pt/TiO2 << ZnO. It was also observed that biochemical and chemical demand oxygen and turbidity significantly decrease after treatment, thus indicating that photocatalysis is a non-selective technology, which can lead to recover wastewater containing different pollutants.


Febrero, 2019 | DOI: 10.1007/s11356-018-1592-3

Holmium doped fiber thermal sensing based on an optofluidic Fabry-Perot microresonator


Lahoz, F; Martin, IR; Soler-Carracedo, K; Caceres, JM; Gil-Rostra, J; Yubero, F
Journal of Luminescence, 206 (2019) 492-497

ABSTRACT

An optical temperature sensor suitable for label free liquid sensing has been designed and characterized. The sensor combines the photochemical stability of rare earth doped glasses and the high sensitivity of interferometric resonators. It is formed by a planar Eabry-Perot (FP) microcavity filled with the liquid to be monitored. A Ho3+ doped tapered optical fiber has been placed inside the microcavity surrounded by the fluid medium. An external laser is focused on the optical fiber inside the cavity to induce the luminescence of the Ho3+ ions, which couples to the FP optical resonances. The spectral position of the FP resonances is highly sensitive to the refractive index of the cavity medium. A second laser is co-aligned with the first one to locally heat the liquid medium around the optical fiber. An average blue shift of the FP resonances around 32 pm/degrees C is measured. The limit of detection of the laser induced heating of the liquid medium is about 0.3 degrees C in the biological temperature range. Alternatively, a hot-plate is used to heat the system. Interestingly, a red shift of the FP modes is observed with 75 pm/degrees C dependence and 0.12 degrees C limit of detection features.


Febrero, 2019 | DOI: 10.1016/j.jlumin.2018.10.103

Growth of nanocolumnar thin films on patterned substrates at oblique angles


Garcia-Valenzuela, A; Munoz-Pina, S; Alcala, G; Alvarez, R; Lacroix, B; Santos, AJ; Cuevas-Maraver, J; Rico, V; Gago, R; Vazquez, L; Cotrino, J; Gonzalez-Elipe, AR; Palmero, A
Plasma Processes and Polymers, 16 (2019) e1800135

ABSTRACT

The influence of one dimensional substrate patterns on the nanocolumnar growth of thin films deposited by magnetron sputtering at oblique angles is theoretically and experimentally studied. A well-established growth model has been used to study the interplay between the substrate topography and the thin film morphology. A critical thickness has been defined, below which the columnar growth is modulated by the substrate topography, while for thicknesses above, the impact of substrate features is progressively lost in two stages; first columns grown on taller features take over neighboring ones, and later the film morphology evolves independently of substrate features. These results have been experimentally tested by analyzing the nanocolumnar growth of SiO2 thin films on ion-induced patterned substrates.


Febrero, 2019 | DOI: 10.1002/ppap.201800135

Mechanochemical combustion synthesis of vanadium carbide (VC), niobium carbide (NbC) and tantalum carbide (TaC) nanoparticles


Jalaly, M; Gotor, FJ; Sayagues, MJ
International Journal of Refractory Metals & Hard Materials, 79 (2019) 177-184

ABSTRACT

The nanoparticles of vanadium, niobium, and tantalum carbides were synthesized by a mechanically induced magnesiothermic combustion in the separate Mg/V2O5/C, Mg/Nb2O5/C, and Mg/Ta2O5/C systems. Initial materials in these systems ignited after short milling times of 10, 10, and 23 min, respectively. X-ray diffraction (XRD), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS), high-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM) and elemental mapping techniques were employed to characterize the combustion products. In this process, magnesium reduces initial oxides to generate elemental V/Nb/Ta to react with carbon, forming the carbide phases.


Febrero, 2019 | DOI: 10.1016/j.ijrmhm.2018.12.011

Production of Ag-ZnO powders by hot mechanochemical processing


Guzman, D; Aguilar, C; Rojas, P; Criado, JM; Dianez, MJ; Espinoza, R; Guzman, A; Martinez, C
Transactions of nonferrous metals society of China, 29 (2019) 365-373

ABSTRACT

Ag-CdO composites are still one of the most commonly used electrical contact materials in low-voltage applications owing to their excellent electrical and mechanical properties. Nevertheless, considering the restriction on using Cd due to its toxicity, it is necessary to find alternative materials that can replace these composites. In this study, the synthesis of Ag-ZnO alloys from Ag-Zn solid solutions was investigated by hot mechanochemical processing. The hot mechanochemical processing was conducted in a modified attritor mill at 138 degrees C under flowing O-2 at 1200 cm(3)/min for 3.0 h. The microstructure and phase evolution were investigated using X-ray diffractometry, field emission gun scanning electron microscopy and transmission electron microscopy. The results suggest that it is possible to complete the oxidation of Ag-Zn solid solution by hot mechanochemical processing at a low temperature and short time. This novel synthesis route can produce Ag-ZnO composites with a homogeneous distribution of nanoscale ZnO precipitates, which is impossible to achieve using the conventional material processing methods. Considering the fact that the fundamental approach to improving electric contact material performance resides in obtaining uniform dispersion of the second-phase in the Ag matrix, this new processing route could open the possibility for Ag-ZnO composites to replace non-environmentally friendly Ag-CdO.


Febrero, 2019 | DOI: 10.1016/S1003-6326(19)64946-0

Mesoporous pyrophyllite–titania nanocomposites: synthesis and activity in phenol photocatalytic degradation


A. El Gaidoumi; J.M. Doña-Rodríguez; E. Pulido Melián; O.M. González-Díaz; B. El Bali; J.A. Navío; A. Kherbeche
Research on Chemical Intermediates, 45 (2019) 333-353

ABSTRACT

Pyrophyllite–TiO2 nanocomposite PTi750 was successfully synthesized using a sol–gel method at ambient temperature based on exfoliation of the pyrophyllite layered clay by incorporation of the TiO2 precursor titanium(IV) t-butoxide. PTi750 exhibited higher photocatalytic activity in phenol degradation compared with commercial TiO2 Aeroxide P25. Ag-photodeposited PTi750 was more photoactive than PTi750, exhibiting detoxification, total degradation, and good mineralization of polluted solution and excellent stability after five reuses at optimal conditions in terms of the parameters pH, H2O2 concentration, and photocatalyst amount. The nanocomposites were investigated using several techniques, viz. diffuse-reflectance ultraviolet–visible (UV–Vis) spectrophotometry, scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction analysis, X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy, Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy, and Brunauer–Emmett–Teller (BET) specific surface area measurements.


Febrero, 2019 | DOI: 10.1007/s11164-018-3605-8

Catalytic Efficiency of Cu-Supported Pyrophyllite in Heterogeneous Catalytic Oxidation of Phenol


El Gaidoumi, A.; Doña-Rodríguez, J.M.; Pulido Melián, E.; González-Díaz, O.M.; Navío, J.A.; El Bali, B.; Kherbeche, A.
Arabian Journal for Science and Engineering, (2019) 1-13

ABSTRACT

The copper-impregnated pyrophyllite (Cu/RC) was prepared and used as catalyst in catalytic wet peroxide oxidation (CWPO) of phenol. The catalyst was prepared by impregnation of copper (2.5 wt%) into pyrophyllite-type clay and characterized by X-ray diffraction, X-ray fluorescence, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, and transmission electron microscopy. The optimum operation conditions for CWPO of phenol over Cu/RC were determined by investigating the effects of pH, temperature, catalyst amount, and hydrogen peroxide concentration. Stability of the Cu/RC catalyst and toxicity of treated solution were studied, by measuring the copper concentration leached out from the catalyst and the inhibition of Vibrio fischeri bacteria bioluminescence, respectively. The probable degradation mechanism of phenol over Cu/RC was considered by HPLC analysis. The obtained results showed that Cu/RC achieved highest activity (total phenol degradation and 80% TOC reduction) and detoxification with remarkable low copper leaching concentration (0.006 mg\,L−1)mg\,L−1) at optimized conditions (pH == 3, T=50∘T=50∘C, 2 g\,L−1g\,L−1 catalyst amount, 50 mg L−1L−1phenol concentration and 7.45 mmol\,L−1mmol\,L−1 hydrogen peroxide concentration during 4 h). Meanwhile, few intermediates with low concentration were observed by the HPLC analysis for the CWPO of phenol. The Cu/RC catalyst showed a good activity after five successive runs (88% of degradation and 73% mineralization) at optimized conditions.


Febrero, 2019 | DOI: 10.1007/s13369-019-03757-2

Highly Efficient Transparent Nanophosphor Films for Tunable White-Light-Emitting Layered Coatings


Geng, DL; Lozano, G; Miguez, H
ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces, 11 (4) (2019) 4219-4225

ABSTRACT

Bright luminescence in rare-earth (RE) nanocrystals, the so-called nanophosphors, is generally achieved by choosing a host that enables an effective excitation of the RE activator through charge or energy transfer. Although tungstate, molybdate, or vanadate compounds provide the aforementioned transfer, a comparative analysis of the efficiency of such emitters remains elusive. Herein, we perform a combined structural and optical analysis, which reveals that the tetragonal GdVO4 matrix gives rise to the highest efficiency among the different transparent nanophosphor films compared. Then, we demonstrate that by a sequential stacking of optical quality layers made of Eu3+- and Dy3+-doped nanocrystals, it is possible to attain highly transparent white-light-emitting coatings of tunable shade with photoluminescence quantum yields above 35%. Layering provides a precise dynamic tuning of the chromaticity based on the photoexcitation wavelength dependence of the emission of the nanophosphor ensemble without altering the chemical composition of the emitters or degrading their efficiency. The total extinction of the incoming radiation along with the high quantum yields achieved makes these thin-layered phosphors one of the most efficient transparent white converter coatings ever developed.


Enero, 2019 | DOI: 10.1021/acsami.8b17368

Influence of Al and Y content on the oxidation resistance of CrAlYN protective coatings for high temperature applications: New insights about the Y role


Rojas, TC; Dominguez-Meister, S; Brizuela, M; Sanchez-Lopez, JC
Journal of Alloys and Compounds, 777 (2019) 1172-1181

ABSTRACT

CrAlYN hard coatings with two different average Al contents: similar to 16 at.% and similar to 25 at.%, and Y concentration varying between 1.2 and 5.7 at.% were deposited by direct current reactive magnetron co-sputtering of mixed Cr-Al and Y targets on commercial M2 steel substrates. The samples were heated to 1000 degrees C in air during 2 h to study their oxidation resistance and thermal stability. The Y content is critical and the coatings present different behaviour depending on the Al content. The best oxidation resistance and thermal stability are obtained for the coating with similar to 16 at.% Al and 3.4 at.% Y. The initial film microstructure and the cubic phase (fcc-CrAlN) were retained, and a thin (Cr,Al)(2)O-3 oxide protective scale was formed. At lower Y content (1.2 at.%) iron, from the substrate crosses the coating, while a higher content (4.6 at.%) avoided the iron diffusion at the expense of a thicker oxide scale with new oxide phases. The coatings with higher Al content (similar to 25 at. %) were not thermally stable at 1000 degrees C. A good oxidation resistance was obtained for 2.6 at.% of Y although new phases (hcp-AlN and Cr-Fe) were formed. Higher amount of yttrium (similar to 5.7 at. %) led to the complete oxidation of the coating. 


Enero, 2019 | DOI: 10.1016/j.jallcom.2018.09.280

Isotope Labelling for Reaction Mechanism Analysis in DBD Plasma Processes


Navascues, P; Obrero-Perez, JM; Cotrino, J; Gonzalez-Elipe, AR; Gomez-Ramirez, A
Catalysts, 9(1) (2019) 45

ABSTRACT

Dielectric barrier discharge (DBD) plasmas and plasma catalysis are becoming an alternative procedure to activate various gas phase reactions. A low-temperature and normal operating pressure are the main advantages of these processes, but a limited energy efficiency and little selectivity control hinder their practical implementation. In this work, we propose the use of isotope labelling to retrieve information about the intermediate reactions that may intervene during the DBD processes contributing to a decrease in their energy efficiency. The results are shown for the wet reforming reaction of methane, using D2O instead of H2O as reactant, and for the ammonia synthesis, using NH3/D-2/N-2 mixtures. In the two cases, it was found that a significant amount of outlet gas molecules, either reactants or products, have deuterium in their structure (e.g., HD for hydrogen, CDxHy for methane, or NDxHy for ammonia). From the analysis of the evolution of the labelled molecules as a function of power, useful information has been obtained about the exchange events of H by D atoms (or vice versa) between the plasma intermediate species. An evaluation of the number of these events revealed a significant progression with the plasma power, a tendency that is recognized to be detrimental for the energy efficiency of reactant to product transformation. The labelling technique is proposed as a useful approach for the analysis of plasma reaction mechanisms.


Enero, 2019 | DOI: 10.3390/catal9010045

Coupling of Ag2CO3 to an optimized ZnO photocatalyst: Advantages vs. disadvantages


P. Sánchez-Cid; C. Jaramillo-Páez; J.A. Navío; A.N. Martín-Gómez; M.C. Hidalgo
Journal of Photochemistry and Photobiology A: Chemistry, 369 (2019) 119-132

ABSTRACT

With the aim of improving the photocatalytic properties of a previously optimized zinc oxide photocatalyst, the effect of the incorporation of different amounts of Ag2CO3 on the aforementioned ZnO has been studied. For this purpose we report the synthesis, by means of simple precipitation procedures, of bare ZnO and Ag2CO3 samples as well as the coupled materials ZnO/Ag2CO3 (X) (where X = 1%, 2%, 4% and 5% in molar percentages). Both, single and coupled materials have been characterized by different techniques (XRD, XRF, N2-absorption, SEM, TEM, UV–vis/DRS and XPS). To assess the advantages or disadvantages that Ag2CO3 addition could have over the optimized ZnO, the photocatalytic properties have been established by following the photo-degradation of selected toxic molecules, both in the UV and in the visible, as well as using complementary techniques of liquid medium analyses (TOC and Atomic Emission Spectrometry with plasma ICP). Three selected substrates were chosen: Rhodamine B (RhB) as a dye, and phenol and caffeine as colourless recalcitrant toxic molecules.
Our results suggest that although the use of Ag2CO3 could be beneficial to implement the optical absorption towards the visible region, however, other effects have to be bore in mind, such as the photo-corrosion of Ag2CO3 and the chemical structure of the chosen substrate, to elucidate whether the addition of Ag2CO3 has beneficial or detrimental effects on the photocatalytic properties of the coupled ZnO/Ag2CO3 materials.


Enero, 2019 | DOI: 10.1016/j.jphotochem.2018.10.024

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