A series of CuO/CeO2 catalysts were successfully synthesized via solution combustion method (SCS) using different fuels and tested for CO oxidation. The catalysts were characterized by energy-dispersive X-ray analysis (EDXA), X-ray diffraction (XRD), Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), scanning electron microscope (SEM), N2 adsorption-desorption isotherms and H2 temperature-programmed reduction (H2-TPR). It was found that the used fuels strongly affected the characterization and the low-temperature reduction behavior of CuO/CeO2 catalysts. The CuO/CeO2-urea catalyst exhibited higher catalytic activity toward CO oxidation (t50=120∘C, t100=159∘C) than the 5 other synthesized catalysts. In addition, the CuO/CeO2-urea catalyst displayed high stability for CO oxidation during five cycles and water resistance. The enhanced catalytic CO oxidation of the synthesized samples can be attributed by a combination of factors, such as smaller crystallite size, higher specific surface area, larger amount of amorphous copper(II) oxide, more mesoporous and uniform spherical-like structure. These findings are worth considering in order to continue the study of the CuO/CeO2 catalyst with low-temperature CO oxidation.
Disadvantages in the use of polylactic acid (PLA) as a base material for Tissue Engineering applications include the low osteoconductivity of this biomaterial, its acidic degradation and the deficient cellular adhesion on its surface. In order to counteract these drawbacks, calcium carbonate (CaCO3) and β-tricalcium phosphate (Ca3(PO4)2, β-TCP) were proposed in this work as additives of PLA-based support structures. Composite scaffolds (PLA:CaCO3: β-TCP 95:2.5:2.5) manufactured by fused deposition modeling (FDM) were tested under enzymatic degradation using proteinase K enzymes to assess the modification of their properties in comparison with neat PLA scaffolds. The samples were characterized before and after the degradation test by optical microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, compression testing and thermogravimetric and calorimetric analysis. According to the results, the combination of the PLA matrix with the proposed additives increases the degradation rate of the 3D printed scaffolds, which is an advantage for the application of the composite scaffold in the field of Tissue Engineering. The higher degradation rate of the composite scaffolds could be explained by the release of the additive particles and the statistically higher microporosity of these samples compared to the neat PLA ones.
Studies on the adsorption of Pb(II) on plantain peels biochar (PPB) was conducted. The carbonized and activated, biochar was characterized using Braunauer-Emmett-Teller (BET) surface area and x-ray diffraction crystallography (XRD). BET analysis of the PPB indicated that the pore size (cc/g) and pore surface area (m2/g) was 8.79 and 16.69 respectively. Result of the XRD evaluated through Debye-Scherrer equation, showed a nanostructure with crystallite size of 14.56 nm. Effects of initial metal ion concentration, pH, and contact time were studied in a batch reaction process. Results showed that the adsorption of lead from aqueous solution increased with an increase in pH and initial concentration. Equilibrium modeling studies suggested that the data fitted mainly to the Langmuir isotherm. Adsorption kinetic data tested using various kinetic models fitted the Weber and Morris intraparticle diffusion model implicating pore diffusion as the main rate limiting step. The sorption studies indicated the potential of plantain peel biochar as an effective, efficient and low cost adsorbent for remediating lead (II) ions contaminated environment.