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Water and its Treatment
Series: De Gruyter STEM

Abstract

Over the last decade, nickel nanoparticles (NiNPs) have been investigated for various potential applications due to their superior ferromagnetic properties such as magneto-crystalline anisotropy, high coercive forces, and chemical stability. Therefore, there has been a tremendous enhancement in the synthesis techniques, proposed reaction mechanisms, and applications of NiNPs. This paper presents a recent overview of the synthesis, reaction mechanisms, and applications of NiNPs. NiNPs in the size range of 1–100 nm are synthesized by various methods for research and commercial applications. The synthesis techniques are classified into three main types, namely, top-down, bottom-up, and hybrids of top-down and bottom-up protocols including solvothermal, physical, and chemical approaches. The detailed reaction mechanisms in the formation of NiNPs, especially for biosynthesis techniques, are extensively described. Trends in NiNP applications in fields such as biomedical, catalysis, supercapacitors, and dye-sensitized solar cells are explored. The basic advantages and role of NiNPs as a catalyst for various reactions are illustrated here.

Abstract

Recently, photocatalysis technology has been widely considered as an effective method for solving environmental pollution issues and addressing the energy crisis. Hybrids of layered double hydroxide (LDH) exhibit excellent photocatalytic properties for use in the field of wastewater treatment due to the large interlayer spaces, chemical stability, and low cost. However, pristine LDH suffers from numerous limitations, such as insufficient visible light utilization and a high recombination rate of electron–hole pairs, resulting in degradation of photocatalytic performance. Recent advancements have demonstrated that LDH-based hybrids are suitable nanocomposites for photocatalytic applications when combining LDH with other semiconductors. This article summarizes the progress in the field of LDH-based ternary composites with emphasis on the removal of organic pollutants and heavy metal ions from aqueous media. Moreover, the applications and synthesis of LDH-based ternary composites, including corresponding examples, are discussed. In addition, the interaction mechanisms between photocatalysts and contaminants in water are comprehensively explained. Finally, the review provides insights into the challenges and prospects for the advancement of LDH-based photocatalysts.

Abstract

Functionally graded carbon nanotube-reinforced composite (FG-CNTRC) is a novel nanomaterial; the mechanical behavior of FG-CNRC has become a hot topic in the Materials Science and Engineering Science recently, thanks to its excellent mechanical and electrical properties after its fusion with matrix. In this paper, the review efforts for research progress on the modeling and analysis of FG-CNTRC structures are carried out. Firstly, the development background of FG-CNRC is presented, as well as some basic theories and main equations for mechanical analysis of FG-CNTRC structure. Then, the mechanical behaviors of FG-CNTRC beams, plates, and shells under loading conditions are comprehensively reviewed, with the emphasis on discussing the bending, buckling, and vibration behaviors of the structures. Finally, the future research orientation of the field is considered and prospected.

Abstract

In the recent decades, traditional concrete poses a great challenge to the modernization of the construction industry because of low tensile strength, poor toughness, and weak resistance to cracking. To overcome these problems, ultra-high performance concrete (UHPC) with superior mechanical properties and durability is developed for broad application prospect in the future engineering construction. However, UHPC is less eco-friendly because it consumes more cement compared with the traditional concrete. The manufacturing of cement produces large amounts of carbon dioxide and therefore leads to the greenhouse effect. Nanomaterials consist of microstructural features that range from 0.1 to 100 nm in size, which exhibit the novel properties different from their bulk counterparts, including filling effect, surface activity, and environmental sustainability. This paper reviews the effect of various nanomaterials used in UHPC to partially replace the cement or as an additive on the microstructures, mechanical properties, and other properties of UHPC. In addition, the limitations and shortcomings of the current research are analyzed and summarized, and development directions are provided for future research on the application of nanomaterials in UHPC.

Abstract

The internal curing technology has been widely applied to high-strength concrete, for it can make the high-strength concrete marked by low shrinkage and durable frost resistance. The key to its extension and application lies in the reasonable mixing amount of internal curing materials. To address this problem, scholars have proposed a method for determining the water demand in internal curing; however, the water release of internal curing materials is difficult to obtain by measurement due to the mixing method. Therefore, this paper proposed a calculation model for the mixing amount of internal curing materials based on the modified MULTIMOORA method (Multi-Objective Optimization on the basis of Ratio Analysis plus full multiplicative form). First, different internal curing materials (super absorbent polymer (SAP), lightweight aggregate (LWA)) and pretreatment methods were selected to calculate their compressive strength, self-shrinkage and frost durability according to a proposed test scheme on the mixing amount of internal curing materials, and in such case, the comprehensive performance evaluation of the above indexes was turned into a multi-attribute decision-making problem. Second, the ordered weighted averaging (OWA) method and the entropy weight method were used to determine the subjective and objective weights of the indexes respectively, to eliminate the impact of outliers in the subjective evaluation values. Finally, the comprehensive performance of each test group was sorted using MULTIMOORA, and based on the sorting results and the calculation model, the mixing amount of internal curing materials was determined. The numerical example application results showed that the mixing amount of SAP curing material calculated based on the model herein was 1.276 kg/m3, and the mixing method adopted the pre-water absorption method with the total water-binder ratio unchanged. The numerical example evaluation results were in good agreement with the test results. The internal curing effect of SAP was better than that of LWA, and reached the best when the mixing amount was calculated at 25 times the water release rate and the requirement for the maximum total water diversion was met. The study may provide new ideas for extension and application of the internal curing technology.

Abstract

Superparamagnetic nanoparticles, exposed to an external variable magnetic field, undergo rapid excitation/relaxation. So-called soft magnets, typically iron-based, rapidly and completely relax when the magnetic field returns to zero. Instead, cobalt-based (CoB) hard magnets retain residual magnetization, a characteristic related with the procedure for nanoparticles (NPs) production. Many researchers are still attracted by the potential of CoB NPs for theranostics as multifaced signal probes for imaging, microrobots, enhanced thermo/radiation therapy, and drug release. Since iron oxide NPs are the only magnetic NPs approved for human use, they are of reference for analyzing the potential of the disregarded CoB NPs. In vitro observed toxicity of CoB NPs, largely attributable to cobalt ions and other chemical species released by dissolution, excluded them from further investigations in humans. Nevertheless, experimental evidences documenting the in vivo toxicity of engineered CoB NPs remain very few. The surface functionalization adds newer properties and could improve the biocompatibility of NPs, critical for the clinical exploitation. In our opinion, it would be worth to further exploit the potential of finely tunable properties of CoB NPs in in vivo systems in order to establish a systematic database of properties and effects suitable for human application.