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Chitosan-Reinforced MFC/NFC Aerogel and Antibacterial Property
MFC/NFC aerogel has water sensitivity, and it should be improved in strength in water before application. Chitosan was investigated as a MFC/NFC aerogel reinforcing agent in this paper. The reinforced aerogel showed slightly tighter structure and very good water stability and mechanical strength. FTIR disclosed the chemical bonds formed between chitosan and cellulose. Nanoparticles of silver (Ag-NPs) were loaded using the reinforced aerogel. The excellent Ag-NP monodistribution on the aerogel was expressed by TEM. Both chitosan-reinforced Ag-NPs loaded MFC aerogel and NFC aerogel and expressed great antibacterial activity, though reinforced MFC aerogel exhibited better properties, like higher BET, lighter density, more Ag-NP loading, and better distribution, than NFC aerogel in this research. Chitosan-reinforced MFC aerogel is a good potential substrate for nanoparticle loading and biocomposite making.
Nonisothermal Kinetic Analysis and AC Conductivity for Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC)/Zinc Oxide (ZnO) Nanocomposite
The behavior of polyvinyl chlorine (PVC)/zinc oxide (ZnO) nanoparticles was investigated. To improve the dispersion and distribution of zinc nanoparticles within the host polymer (PVC), they were treated with water before being added to the polymer. The nanocomposite samples were prepared by casting method using different weight ratios of ZnO nanoparticles. The prepared nanocomposite samples were characterized by thermogravimetric analysis (TGA). Both thermal stability and kinetic analysis of the prepared samples were investigated. The ZnO nanoparticles lower the activation energy and decrease the thermal stability of PVC. Kissinger, Flynn-Wall-Ozawa, and Kissinger-Akahira-Sunose models were used in the nonisothermal kinetic analysis of PVC/ZnO nanocomposite samples. The thermal stability behavior due to the addition of zinc oxide nanoparticles was explained and correlated with the behavior of the kinetic parameters of the samples. The AC conductivity as function of frequency and temperature was also investigated. The addition of ZnO nanoparticle increases the AC conductivity, and the temperature-independent region decreased by increasing temperature. Both and coefficients were predicted using the Jonscher power law and OriginLab software. The trends of and coefficients were discussed based on the glass transition of the host polymer.
3D Network Structural Poly (Aryl Ether Ketone)-Polybenzimidazole Polymer for High-Temperature Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cells
Poor mechanical property is a critical problem for phosphoric acid-doped high-temperature proton exchange membranes (HT-PEMs). In order to address this concern, in this work, a 3D network structural poly (aryl ether ketone)-polybenzimidazole (PAEK-cr-PBI) polymer electrolyte membrane was successfully synthesized through crosslinking reaction between poly (aryl ether ketone) with the pendant carboxyl group (PAEK-COOH) and amino-terminated polybenzimidazole (PBI-4NH2). PAEK-COOH with a poly (aryl ether ketone) backbone endows superior thermal, mechanical, and chemical stability, while PBI-4NH2 serves as both a proton conductor and a crosslinker with basic imidazole groups to absorb phosphoric acid. Moreover, the composite membrane of PAEK-cr-PBI blended with linear PBI (PAEK-cr-PBI@PBI) was also prepared. Both membranes with a proper phosphoric acid (PA) uptake exhibit an excellent proton conductivity of around 50 mS cm-1 at 170°C, which is comparable to that of the well-documented PA-doped PBI membrane. Furthermore, the PA-doped PAEK-cr-PBI membrane shows superior mechanical properties of 17 MPa compared with common PA-doped PBI. Based upon these encouraging results, the as-synthesized PAEK-cr-PBI gives a highly practical promise for its application in high-temperature proton exchange membrane fuel cells (HT-PEMFCs).
Evaluation of the Potential Use of Levan Polysaccharide in Paper Conservation
Conservation of paper-based materials, namely, manuscripts, includes repair of tears, gap filling, consolidation, and fixation, which requires the use of adhesives. The adhesive in use for these purposes should be compatible with the chemical and physical properties of paper and should present good aging characteristics. In this study, we conducted a set of experiments with paper samples on which fructan-based biopolymer Halomonas levan (Hlevan) was applied for the first time and compared with glucan-based adhesive starch. Adhesive-applied samples were initially prepared by the application of different historical recipes of sizing and ink. Then, they underwent accelerated thermal aging. Chemical and physical changes of paper samples (crystallinity, pH, and color) were analyzed. Finally, Principal Component Analysis was performed to identify dominating factors affecting sample behavior with applied adhesives. This study demonstrates the aging characteristics of Hlevan on cellulose-based materials. The results showed that there is a color shift from blue to yellow for all samples after aging, but it is more pronounced for some samples with Hlevan. In addition, Hlevan is slightly less acidic than starch in all cases and acted as a plasticizer for a specific kind of sizing material. The methodology of this research is also efficacious in terms of understanding the interaction of paper media with the adhesives and their effects on aging.
3D In Vitro Human Organ Mimicry Devices for Drug Discovery, Development, and Assessment
The past few decades have shown significant advancement as complex in vitro humanized systems have substituted animal trials and 2D in vitro studies. 3D humanized platforms mimic the organs of interest with their stimulations (physical, electrical, chemical, and mechanical). Organ-on-chip devices, including in vitro modelling of 3D organoids, 3D microfabrication, and 3D bioprinted platforms, play an essential role in drug discovery, testing, and assessment. In this article, a thorough review is provided of the latest advancements in the area of organ-on-chip devices targeting liver, kidney, lung, gut, heart, skin, and brain mimicry devices for drug discovery, development, and/or assessment. The current strategies, fabrication methods, and the specific application of each device, as well as the advantages and disadvantages, are presented for each reported platform. This comprehensive review also provides some insights on the challenges and future perspectives for the further advancement of each organ-on-chip device.
3-Bromopyridine-Heterogenized Phosphotungstic Acid for Efficient Trimerization of Biomass-Derived 5-Hydroxymethylfurfural with 2-Methylfuran to C21 Fuel Precursor
The production of long-chain carbon compounds (C9-C21) from biomass derivatives to alternate traditional fossil diesel is sustainable, eco-friendly, and potentially economic for modern industry. In this work, phosphotungstic acid heterogenized by 3-bromopyridine was achieved using a solvothermal method, which was demonstrated to be efficient for trimerization of biomass-derived 5-hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF) with 2-methylfuran (2-MF) to C21 fuel precursor (57.1% yield) under mild reaction conditions. The heterogeneous acidic catalyst could be reused for four consecutive cycles without obvious loss of activity, and different characterization techniques (e.g., XRD (X-ray diffraction), TG (thermogravimetric analysis), SEM (scanning electron microscope), FT-IR (Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy), and BET (Brunauer-Emmet-Teller)) were utilized to investigate the performance of the catalyst. In addition, a plausible reaction pathway was postulated, on the basis of results obtained by NMR (nuclear magnetic resonance) and GC-MS (gas chromatography-mass spectrometer). This strategy provides a facile and efficient approach to prepare a recyclable acidic catalyst for the production of diesel fuel precursor from biomass via controllable polymerization.