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A sample structure and method for superlateral-growth (SLG) enhancement in excimer-laser crystallization has been implemented and realized. The proposed sample structure is a Si film/buffer film/light-absorptive (LA) film/glass-stacked structure, with the irradiation of laser light from underneath a substrate. The influence of the absorption coefficient α of the LA film has been found to be critical in this structure. By increasing α from 0 to 12,000 cm−1, diameter of SLG grain has increased from 0.8 to 10 μm, with the solidification term increased from 75 to 1050 ns, respectively. The radius of SLG grain was shown to be proportional to the solidification term with a slope of 5 m/s. This result suggests the average SLG growth rate is constant at 5 m/s, irrespective of the solidification term of Si film. The applicability of present method to both sequential lateral solidification method and micromelt seeding method was demonstrated. Overcoming of Si agglomeration has been shown to be important for applying the present method to the sequential lateral solidification (SLS) method.
The authors have devised a novel organic light-emitting transistor (OLET) with a PN-heteroboundary combined with hole and electron transport materials (in other words, p-type and n-type organic semiconductors) along carrier channels. In this device, a clear modulation of the current and luminance with the gate voltage was observed. A luminance of 100 cd/m2 or more has been observed at the source–source voltage of 15 V with the turn-on voltage of 10 V or less, which is lower than that of OLETs based on a single organic material. The horizontal PN-heteroboundary structure has been implemented for the first time by using the photolithographic patterning of organic semiconductor thin films. This patterning technique can be applied to the fabrication of not only the OLETs reported in this work, but also to organic integrated circuits or organic displays.
High performance Fe-cladded MgB2 taps were prepared by the in situ powder-in-tube method utilizing very cheap stearic acid (C18H36O2) as dopants. The amount of stearic acid was varied from 0 to 30 wt%. We found that a significant enhancement of Jc, Hirr, and Hc2 in comparison with undoped samples was easily achieved. At 4.2 K, the transport Jc for the best doped tapes (10 wt%) reached 2 × 104 A/cm2 at 10 T and 3.7 × 103 A/cm2 at 14 T, respectively, an order of magnitude higher than for the pure tapes. In particular, at 20 K, the irreversibility field of the 10 wt% doped tape was around 10 T, which is comparable to the upper critical field of the commercial NbTi at 4.2 K. The results demonstrate great potential of MgB2 tapes for superconducting magnets.
Detailed cyclic indentation experiments of crystalline silicon in this study show interesting behavior depending on the end phase from the previous cycle. To enable the behavior of these phases to be studied on reloading, the cyclic indentation response of the material is examined under conditions where the pressure-induced Si-II phase transforms either to amorphous (a-Si) or high pressure Si-XII/Si-III phases on unloading. For an amorphous end phase the subsequent reloading is hysteretic, and for high pressure crystalline end phases it is elastic. This indicates that, whereas a-Si re-transforms readily to Si-II upon reloading, Si-XII/Si-III does not retransform to Si-II even at the maximum indentation load. Based on the concept of the effective indenter shape and stresses induced in the material, we show that Si-XII/Si-III has a greater critical hydrostatic pressure for retransformation to Si-II than that of the diamond cubic Si-I.
The evolution of the structural and magnetic properties of metal-ceramic, cermet, nanocomposite powders, consisting of Co and α–Al2O3 in different proportions, prepared by ball milling has been investigated. The overall microstructure of the system, after long-term milling, is found to be very sensitive to the amount of α–Al2O3, yielding a less refined and faulted hexagonal-close-packed (hcp)-Co structure for the sample with larger α–Al2O3 percentage. The increased presence of the ceramic counterpart also causes a delay of the face-centered-cubic (fcc) to hcp-Co stress-induced transformation during ball milling. The results seem to indicate an evolution of the role of α–Al2O3, from increasing locally the strain rate of the mechanical work for small amounts of ceramic to absorbing milling energy for large amounts of α–Al2O3. The magnetic properties correlate with the obtained microstructure, where the amount of hcp-Co and stacking faults and the isolation of the Co particles by the α–Al2O3 control the coercivity.
Hexagonal cerium oxide nanoflakes have been synthesized by using a surfactant-free route. Transmission electcron microscopy (TEM), x-ray diffraction (XRD), infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), thermogravimetric and differential thermal analysis (TG-DTA), Brunauer–Emmett–Teller adsorption isotherm (BET), photoluminescence (PL), and ultraviolet–visible (UV–VIS) were used to characterize the sample. The mean size of the nanoflakes is about 30 nm and the specific surface is about 70.08 m2·g−1 when annealed at 400 °C. The acidity and superfluous NH4NO3 play a key role on the formation of nanoflakes in which there exists Ce (IV) and very little Ce (III). The nanoflakes exhibit a wide PL emission peak among 350–400 nm, strong absorption ranged from 200–450 nm, and strong reflection in the visible region. As the sizes of as-prepared samples decrease, a clear blue shift in the absorbing edge is observed. The linear relationship between ΔEg and D is shown in a log–log plot. The as-prepared cerium oxide nanoflakes can be widely used as UV absorbent and polishing materials.
Much has been learned from electrochemical properties of boron-doped diamond (BDD) thin films synthesized using microwave plasma-assisted chemical vapor deposition about the factors influencing electrochemical activity, but some characteristics are still not entirely understood, such as its electrical conductivity in relation with microscale structure. Therefore, to effectively utilize these materials, understanding both the microscopic structure and physical (electrical, in particular) properties becomes indispensable. In addition to topography using atomic force microscopy, electrostatic force microscopy (EFM) in phase mode measuring the long-range electrostatic force gradients, helps to map the electrical conductivity heterogeneity of boron-doped micro-/nanocrystalline diamond surfaces. The mapping of electrical conductivity on boron doping and bias voltage is investigated. Experimental results showed that the BDD films’ surfaces were partially rougher with contrast of conductive regions (areas much less than 1 μm2 in diameter), which were uniformly distributed. Usually, the EFM signal is a convolution of topography and electrostatic force, and the phase contrast was increased with boron doping. At the highest boron doping level, the conductive regions exhibited quasi-metallic electrical properties. Moreover, the presence of a “positive–negative–positive” phase shift along the line section indicates the presence of “insulating–conducting–insulating” phases, although qualitative. Furthermore, the electrical properties, such as capacitance and dielectric constants at operating frequency, were quantitatively evaluated through modeling the bias-dependent phase measurements using simple and approximate geometries. It was found that decreasing grain size (or increasing the boron concentration) lowers the dielectric constant, which is attributed to the change in the crystal field caused by surface bond contraction of the nanosized crystallites. These findings are complemented and validated with scanning electron microscopy, x-ray diffraction, and “visible” Raman spectroscopy revealing their morphology, structure, and carbon-bonding configuration (sp3 versus sp2), respectively. These results are significant in the development of electrochemical nano-/microelectrodes and diamond-based electronics.
The self assembly of C60-N, N′-dimethylpyrrolidinium iodide (C60-DMePyI) in binary liquid mixtures has been investigated. C60-DMePyI self-organized into nanosheets in a mixture of toluene and iodomethane, and aggregated to form nanofibers in toluene. The dimensions of the nanosheets were several micrometers in length and about 100 nm in thickness. Scanning electron microscope observations indicated that a large number of nanorods having a diameter of about 20-nm formed matted nanosheets. When iodomethane alone was used as a solvent, supramolecular structures such as nanofibers and nanosheets were not produced. Structural analyses of the C60-DMePyI aggregates were carried out by laser Raman spectroscopy and x-ray diffraction (XRD). The Raman spectroscopic results suggested that an ordered chain of successive polyiodine units was formed in all the supramolecular aggregates. The XRD studies showed that the crystal systems of the nanosheets and nanofibers were monoclinic, though with different unit cells.
Nitrogen was doped into titanium dioxide film to alter its surface electrostatic properties, and subsequently modulate the interaction force between MS2 virus and semiconductor films for control of the adsorption behavior of MS2 on semiconductor surfaces. By combining atomic force microscopy (AFM) height profile and phase profile, adsorptions of MS2 virus on TiO2-based semiconductor surfaces were observed in solutions over a range of pH values. The adsorption behavior was shown to agree with the theoretical analysis of colloidal interactions.
Mechanisms of microstructure evolution during annealing after cold working were studied in an Fe-15%Cr ferritic stainless steel, which was processed by bar rolling/swaging to various total strains ranging from 1.0 to 7.3 at ambient temperature. Two types of recrystallization behavior were observed depending on the cold strain. An ordinary primary (discontinuous) recrystallization developed in the samples processed to conventional strains of 1.0–2.0. On the other hand, rapid recovery at early annealing resulted in ultrafine-grained microstructures in the larger strained samples that continuously coarsened on further annealing. Such annealing behavior was considered as continuous recrystallization.
Copper oxynitride thin films with a minor oxygen content were prepared on silicon wafers at 100 °C by reactive magnetron sputtering using a gas mixture of nitrogen and oxygen. Addition of oxygen immediately improves the compactness of the deposits, which otherwise comprise ragged Cu3N nanocrystallites. With an oxygen content <10.0 at.%, the deposits reveal some sporadic Cu2O nanocrystals under transmission electron microscopy, but their x-ray diffraction (XRD) patterns exhibit reflections only from the Cu3N phase. The decomposition temperature, at which the sample after prolonged annealing shows Cu reflections on its XRD pattern, can be raised from 300 °C for stoichiometric Cu3N to 360 °C. The decomposition product after annealing at 450 °C is pure copper having an electrical resistivity of 8.94 × 10−8 Ω·m at room temperature, which can be taken as a good conductor and stands in strong contrast with the oxynitride matrix with an electrical resistivity of 6.87 × 10−2 Ω·m. These results constitute progress in the search of directly writable copper nitride-based materials.
Layered stacking characteristics of ternary Zr–Al–C carbides were investigated using scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM). Three previously unknown compounds, i.e., Zr4Al3C6, Zr5Al6C9, and Zr7Al6C11 were identified. The present study extends the structural information of ternary Zr–Al–C ceramics. The influence of the thickness of the NaCl-type Zr-C slab on the elastic properties of ternary Zr–Al–C ceramics is discussed based on first-principles calculations. In addition, direct atomic-resolution observations illustrate the process for forming the unique layered crystal structures of ternary Zr–Al–C ceramics. These results also provide insights into the formation mechanism of layered ternary Zr–Al–C carbides.
Compressive deformation was experimentally investigated for Ti41.5Cu42.5Zr2.5Hf5Ni7.5Si1 bulk metallic glass (BMG) fabricated at different cooling rates. It was found that the ductility of the BMG alloy increased with increasing of the cooling rate in solidification. The alloy with a monolithic amorphous structure exhibited a large ductility, up to 12%. The effect of cooling rate on the ductility of the BMG alloy is interpreted in terms of the variation in amorphous nature and free volume of the as-cast materials.
The nature of the elastic unloading after an elastic-plastic contact with a conical or Berkovich indenter is studied. Three representative specimens having different mechanical properties were tested. Finite-element results for the pressure distribution beneath the indenter during unloading suggest that the effective indenter is in fact very closely approximated by a sphere in the case of fused silica (a material with a relatively low value of E/H) and a more uniform pressure distribution in the case of silicon and sapphire (materials with higher values of E/H). The proposed reason for these observations is the extent and influence of an elastic enclave directly beneath the indenter as revealed by finite-element analysis. The results also show that the pressure distribution retains its form during the entire unloading. The work seeks to provide a physical reason for the value of the fitting exponent m as used in popular nanoindentation data analysis procedures.
Unlike the dislocation-based plasticity in crystalline metals, which can be readily explained by their crystal structure and the presence of defects, the nature of the plasticity in amorphous alloys is not completely understood. Experiments have shown that the plasticity in amorphous alloys is strongly dependent on their atomic packing density. This study, based on the combination of experimental and computational techniques, examines the origin of the plasticity in amorphous alloys considering characteristics of the inherent atomic-scale structure as defined by short-range ordered (SRO) clusters. The role of various SRO atomic clusters in creating free volume during shear deformation is discussed. We report that the plasticity exhibited by amorphous alloys is very sensitive to the characteristics of the atomic packing state, which can be described by various SRO atomic structures and quantified by the effective activation energy for crystallization.
The surface nanodeformation of a discontinuously reinforced Ti–6Al–4V composite during tensile loading was investigated by in situ atomic force microscope (AFM) observation. The material used was a TiB whisker and TiC particle reinforced Ti–6Al–4V composite. The evolution of surface roughness and slip band spacing was quantified as a function of applied strain. The microstructural damage during tensile loading was also studied. The formation of slip bands within a grain of the Ti–6Al–4V matrix was clearly observed when the applied strain above was 1.3%. The amount of slip bands and surface roughness increase with increasing applied strain. The rupture of TiC particle and multiple cracking of TiB whiskers were also observed at the applied strain above 1.3%. The interaction of slip bands with the reinforcements and mechanisms of deformation and fracture of the composite were elucidated.
In this work, we performed nanoindentation studies on polymers with different moduli in the range of several millipascals up to several gigapascals. The focus was on the initial contact identification during indentation testing. Surface-detection methods using quasi-static loading as well as methods employing the dynamic forces associated with the continuous stiffness measurement technique were compared regarding their practicability and accuracy for the testing of polymeric materials. For the most compliant material with a modulus of 1 MPa, where contact identification is most critical, we used load-displacement curves obtained from finite element modeling analysis as a reference for the evaluation of experimental techniques. The results show how crucial the precise surface detection is for achieving accurate indentation results, especially for compliant materials. Further, we found that surface detection by means of dynamic testing provides mechanical-property values of higher accuracy for all polymers used in this study. This was due to smaller errors in surface detection, thus avoiding a significant underestimation of the contact area.
We studied the effects of anisotropic pores and fiber texture on the fatigue strength and fracture surface of lotus-type porous magnesium fabricated through unidirectional solidification in pressurized hydrogen and argon atmospheres. The fatigue strength in the direction parallel to the longitudinal axis of pores is higher than that in the perpendicular direction. Not only anisotropic pores but also fiber texture grown along the pore direction contributes to the anisotropy in the fatigue strength. The fatigue strength at finite life of lotus magnesium is closely related to the ultimate tensile strength; the fatigue strength is proportional to the ultimate tensile strength for both loadings parallel and perpendicular to the pore direction. The fracture surface of lotus magnesium is not flat, which originates from porous structure. For parallel loading, fiber texture in lotus magnesium also contributes to the irregular surface, i.e., a combination of texture and pore structure affects fracture surfaces.
Sm-Fe-N powders were successfully consolidated at 873 K and below by the spark plasma sintering (SPS) method. Although the decomposition temperature of the hard magnetic Sm2Fe17N3 phase has been reported to be 873 K, partial decomposition of the Sm2Fe17N3 phase was noted in the bulk materials obtained by sintering at below that temperature. The resultant bulk materials showed a coercivity of around 0.24 MAm−1, significantly lower than that of the original Sm-Fe-N powder. It was found that decomposition of the Sm2Fe17N3 phase in the SPS method was significantly lowered by the addition of a small amount of Zn powder to the Sm-Fe-N powder. The bulk material obtained by sintering a mixture of Sm-Fe-N and Zn powder (10%Zn) at 723 K exhibited high coercivity, comparable with that of the original Sm-Fe-N powder.
Photocatalytic titanium dioxide coatings prepared via various processes have been developed for antimicrobial purposes. Among them is arc ion plating, which may provide more advantages than other processes such as high growth rate, strong film adhesion, as well as the ability to obtain anatase phase at a low deposition temperature. This research involves an arc ion plating method to produce TiO2 film on stainless steel. Antimicrobial efficacy is examined as a function of coating parameters. The experimental results show that the deposited film mainly consists of a rutile phase at an initial growth stage, followed by the growth of an anatase phase at a later stage. By increasing oxygen partial pressure, an increased volume of anatase phase is obtained. The volume of anatase phase is found to strongly and positively affect antimicrobial efficiency. Such an arc ion plated TiO2 coating can be potentially served for antimicrobial treatment of medical equipment.