Commenced in January 2007
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Edition: International
Paper Count: 20

Search results for: Kohei Sasaki

20 Introduction of Para-Sasaki-Like Riemannian Manifolds and Construction of New Einstein Metrics

Authors: Mancho Manev

Abstract:

The concept of almost paracontact Riemannian manifolds (abbr., apcR manifolds) was introduced by I. Sato in 1976 as an analogue of almost contact Riemannian manifolds. The notion of an apcR manifold of type (p,q) was defined by S. Sasaki in 1980, where p and q are respectively the numbers of the multiplicity of the structure eigenvalues 1 and -1. It also has a simple eigenvalue of 0. In our work, we consider (2n+1)-dimensional apcR manifolds of type (n,n), i.e., the paracontact distribution of the studied manifold can be considered as a 2n-dimensional almost paracomplex Riemannian distribution with almost paracomplex structure and structure group O(n) × O(n). The aim of the present study is to introduce a new class of apcR manifolds. Such a manifold is obtained using the construction of a certain Riemannian cone over it, and the resulting manifold is a paraholomorphic paracomplex Riemannian manifold (abbr., phpcR manifold). We call it a para-Sasaki-like Riemannian manifold (abbr., pSlR manifold) and give some explicit examples. We study the structure of pSlR spaces and find that the paracontact form η is closed and each pSlR manifold locally can be considered as a certain product of the real line with a phpcR manifold, which is locally a Riemannian product of two equidimensional Riemannian spaces. We also obtain that the curvature of the pSlR manifolds is completely determined by the curvature of the underlying local phpcR manifold. Moreover, the ξ-directed Ricci curvature is equal to -2n, while in the Sasaki case, it is 2n. Accordingly, the pSlR manifolds can be interpreted as the counterpart of the Sasaki manifolds; the skew-symmetric part of ∇η vanishes, while in the Sasaki case, the symmetric part vanishes. We define a hyperbolic extension of a (complete) phpcR manifold that resembles a certain warped product, and we indicate that it is a (complete) pSlR manifold. In addition, we consider the hyperbolic extension of a phpcR manifold and prove that if the initial manifold is a complete Einstein manifold with negative scalar curvature, then the resulting manifold is a complete Einstein pSlR manifold with negative scalar curvature. In this way, we produce new examples of a complete Einstein Riemannian manifold with negative scalar curvature. Finally, we define and study para contact conformal/homothetic deformations by deriving a subclass that preserves the para-Sasaki-like condition. We then find that if we apply a paracontact homothetic deformation of a pSlR space, we obtain that the Ricci tensor is invariant.

Keywords: almost paracontact Riemannian manifolds, Einstein manifolds, holomorphic product manifold, warped product manifold

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19 Preparation of CuAlO2 Thin Films on Si or Sapphire Substrate by Sol-Gel Method Using Metal Acetate or Nitrate

Authors: Takashi Ehara, Takayoshi Nakanishi, Kohei Sasaki, Marina Abe, Hiroshi Abe, Kiyoaki Abe, Ryo Iizaka, Takuya Sato

Abstract:

CuAlO2 thin films are prepared on Si or sapphire substrate by sol-gel method using two kinds of sols. One is combination of Cu acetate and Al acetate basic, and the other is Cu nitrate and Al nitrate. In the case of acetate sol, XRD peaks of CuAlO2 observed at annealing temperature of 800-950 ºC on both Si and sapphire substrates. In contrast, in the case of the films prepared using nitrate on Si substrate, XRD peaks of CuAlO2 have been observed only at the annealing temperature of 800-850 ºC. At annealing temperature of 850ºC, peaks of other species have been observed beside the CuAlO2 peaks, then, the CuAlO2 peaks disappeared at annealing temperature of 900 °C with increasing in intensity of the other peaks. Intensity of the other peaks decreased at annealing temperature of 950 ºC with appearance of broad SiO2 peak. In the present, we ascribe these peaks as metal silicide.

Keywords: CuAlO2, silicide, thin Films, transparent conducting oxide

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18 Knowledge Required for Avoiding Lexical Errors at Machine Translation

Authors: Yukiko Sasaki Alam

Abstract:

This research aims at finding out the causes that led to wrong lexical selections in machine translation (MT) rather than categorizing lexical errors, which has been a main practice in error analysis. By manually examining and analyzing lexical errors outputted by a MT system, it suggests what knowledge would help the system reduce lexical errors.

Keywords: machine translation, error analysis, lexical errors, evaluation

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17 Binarized-Weight Bilateral Filter for Low Computational Cost Image Smoothing

Authors: Yu Zhang, Kohei Inoue, Kiichi Urahama

Abstract:

We propose a simplified bilateral filter with binarized coefficients for accelerating it. Its computational cost is further decreased by sampling pixels. This computationally low cost filter is useful for smoothing or denoising images by using mobile devices with limited computational power.

Keywords: bilateral filter, binarized-weight bilateral filter, image smoothing, image denoising, pixel sampling

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16 Integral Image-Based Differential Filters

Authors: Kohei Inoue, Kenji Hara, Kiichi Urahama

Abstract:

We describe a relationship between integral images and differential images. First, we derive a simple difference filter from conventional integral image. In the derivation, we show that an integral image and the corresponding differential image are related to each other by simultaneous linear equations, where the numbers of unknowns and equations are the same, and therefore, we can execute the integration and differentiation by solving the simultaneous equations. We applied the relationship to an image fusion problem, and experimentally verified the effectiveness of the proposed method.

Keywords: integral images, differential images, differential filters, image fusion

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15 Study of Syntactic Errors for Deep Parsing at Machine Translation

Authors: Yukiko Sasaki Alam, Shahid Alam

Abstract:

Syntactic parsing is vital for semantic treatment by many applications related to natural language processing (NLP), because form and content coincide in many cases. However, it has not yet reached the levels of reliable performance. By manually examining and analyzing individual machine translation output errors that involve syntax as well as semantics, this study attempts to discover what is required for improving syntactic and semantic parsing.

Keywords: syntactic parsing, error analysis, machine translation, deep parsing

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14 Dark and Bright Envelopes for Dehazing Images

Authors: Zihan Yu, Kohei Inoue, Kiichi Urahama

Abstract:

We present a method for de-hazing images. A dark envelope image is derived with the bilateral minimum filter and a bright envelope is derived with the bilateral maximum filter. The ambient light and transmission of the scene are estimated from these two envelope images. An image without haze is reconstructed from the estimated ambient light and transmission.

Keywords: image dehazing, bilateral minimum filter, bilateral maximum filter, local contrast

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13 Exciting Voltage Control for Efficiency Maximization for 2-D Omni-Directional Wireless Power Transfer Systems

Authors: Masato Sasaki, Masayoshi Yamamoto

Abstract:

The majority of wireless power transfer (WPT) systems transfer power in a directional manner. This paper describes a discrete exciting voltage control technique for WPT via magnetic resonant coupling with two orthogonal transmitter coils (2D omni-directional WPT system) which can maximize the power transfer efficiency in response to the change of coupling status. The theory allows the equations of the efficiency of the system to be determined at all the rate of the mutual inductance. The calculated results are included to confirm the advantage to one directional WPT system and the validity of the theory and the equations.

Keywords: wireless power transfer, omni-directional, orthogonal, efficiency

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12 Direct Transient Stability Assessment of Stressed Power Systems

Authors: E. Popov, N. Yorino, Y. Zoka, Y. Sasaki, H. Sugihara

Abstract:

This paper discusses the performance of critical trajectory method (CTrj) for power system transient stability analysis under various loading settings and heavy fault condition. The method obtains Controlling Unstable Equilibrium Point (CUEP) which is essential for estimation of power system stability margins. The CUEP is computed by applying the CTrjto the boundary controlling unstable equilibrium point (BCU) method. The Proposed method computes a trajectory on the stability boundary that starts from the exit point and reaches CUEP under certain assumptions. The robustness and effectiveness of the method are demonstrated via six power system models and five loading conditions. As benchmark is used conventional simulation method whereas the performance is compared with and BCU Shadowing method.

Keywords: power system, transient stability, critical trajectory method, energy function method

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11 CO2 Gas Solubility and Foam Generation

Authors: Chanmoly Or, Kyuro Sasaki, Yuichi Sugai, Masanori Nakano, Motonao Imai

Abstract:

Cold drainage mechanism of oil production is a complicated process which involves with solubility and foaming processes. Laboratory experiments were carried out to investigate the CO2 gas solubility in hexadecane (as light oil) and the effect of depressurization processes on microbubble generation. The experimental study of sensitivity parameters of temperature and pressure on CO2 gas solubility in hexadecane was conducted at temperature of 20 °C and 50 °C and pressure ranged 2.0–7.0 MPa by using PVT (RUSKA Model 2370) apparatus. The experiments of foamy hexadecane were also prepared by depressurizing from saturated pressure of 6.4 MPa and temperature of 50 °C. The experimental results show the CO2 gas solubility in hexadecane linearly increases with increasing pressure. At pressure 4.5 MPa, CO2 gas dissolved in hexadecane 2.5 mmol.g-1 for temperature of 50 °C and 3.5 mmol.g-1 for temperature of 20 °C. The bubbles of foamy hexadecane were observed that most of large bubbles were coalesced shortly whereas the small one keeps presence. The experimental result of foamy hexadecane indicated large depressurization step (∆P) produces high quality of foam with high microbubble distribution.

Keywords: CO2 gas solubility, depressurization process, foamy hexadecane, microbubble distribution

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10 Carbothermic Reduction of Phosphoric Acid Extracted from Dephosphorization Slags to Produce Yellow Phosphorus

Authors: Ryoko Yoshida, Jyunpei Yoshida, Hua Fang Yu, Yasushi Sasaki, Tetsuya Nagasaka

Abstract:

Phosphorous is an important element for agriculture and industry and is a non-renewable resource. Especially, yellow phosphorus is an essential material in advanced industrial technology, but phosphorus resources were not produced in Japan at all, and all depend on imports. It has been suggested, however, that the remaining accessible reserves of phosphate ore will be depleted within 50 years. Therefore, alternative resources for phosphate ore must be found. In this research, we have developed a process that enables the production of high-purity yellow phosphorus from domestic unused phosphorus resources such as steelmaking slags. The process consists of two parts: (1) the production of crude phosphoric acid from wastes such as steelmaking slag; (2) producing high-purity yellow phosphorus by low-temperature carbothermic reduction of phosphoric acid (H3PO4). The details of the carbothermic reduction of phosphoric acid are presented in this paper. Yellow phosphorus is commercially produced by carbothermic reduction of phosphate ore in an electric arc furnace at more than 1673K. In the newly developed system, gaseous P4O10 evaporated from H3PO4 is successfully reduced to yellow phosphorus by using carbon packed bed at less than 1273K. To meet the depletion of phosphate ore, the proposed process in this study to produce yellow phosphorus by carbothermic reduction of H3PO4 that are extracted from dephosphorization slags will be one of the effective and economical solutions.

Keywords: carbothermic reduction, phosphoric acid, dephosphorization slags, yellow phosphorus

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9 Site-Specific Delivery of Hybrid Upconversion Nanoparticles for Photo-Activated Multimodal Therapies of Glioblastoma

Authors: Yuan-Chung Tsai, Masao Kamimura, Kohei Soga, Hsin-Cheng Chiu

Abstract:

In order to enhance the photodynamic/photothermal therapeutic efficacy on glioblastoma, the functionized upconversion nanoparticles with the capability of converting the deep tissue penetrating near-infrared light into visible wavelength for activating photochemical reaction were developed. The drug-loaded nanoparticles (NPs) were obtained from the self-assembly of oleic acid-coated upconversion nanoparticles along with maleimide-conjugated poly(ethylene glycol)-cholesterol (Mal-PEG-Chol), as the NP stabilizer, and hydrophobic photosensitizers, IR-780 (for photothermal therapy, PTT) and mTHPC (for photodynamic therapy, PDT), in aqueous phase. Both the IR-780 and mTHPC were loaded into the hydrophobic domains within NPs via hydrophobic association. The peptide targeting ligand, angiopep-2, was further conjugated with the maleimide groups at the end of PEG adducts on the NP surfaces, enabling the affinity coupling with the low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein-1 of tumor endothelial cells and malignant astrocytes. The drug-loaded NPs with the size of ca 80 nm in diameter exhibit a good colloidal stability in physiological conditions. The in vitro data demonstrate the successful targeting delivery of drug-loaded NPs toward the ALTS1C1 cells (murine astrocytoma cells) and the pronounced cytotoxicity elicited by combinational effect of PDT and PTT. The in vivo results show the promising brain orthotopic tumor targeting of drug-loaded NPs and sound efficacy for brain tumor dual-modality treatment. This work shows great potential for improving photodynamic/photothermal therapeutic efficacy of brain cancer.

Keywords: drug delivery, orthotopic brain tumor, photodynamic/photothermal therapies, upconversion nanoparticles

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8 Finite Element Approach to Evaluate Time Dependent Shear Behavior of Connections in Hybrid Steel-PC Girder under Sustained Loading

Authors: Mohammad Najmol Haque, Takeshi Maki, Jun Sasaki

Abstract:

Headed stud shear connections are widely used in the junction or embedded zone of hybrid girder to achieve whole composite action with continuity that can sustain steel-concrete interfacial tensile and shear forces. In Japan, Japan Road Association (JRA) specifications are used for hybrid girder design that utilizes very low level of stud capacity than those of American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC) specifications, Japan Society of Civil Engineers (JSCE) specifications and EURO code. As low design shear strength is considered in design of connections, the time dependent shear behavior due to sustained external loading is not considered, even not fully studied. In this study, a finite element approach was used to evaluate the time dependent shear behavior for headed studs used as connections at the junction. This study clarified, how the sustained loading distinctively impacted on changing the interfacial shear of connections with time which was sensitive to lodging history, positions of flanges, neighboring studs, position of prestress bar and reinforcing bar, concrete strength, etc. and also identified a shear influence area. Stud strength was also confirmed through pushout tests. The outcome obtained from the study may provide an important basis and reference data in designing connections of hybrid girders with enhanced stud capacity with due consideration of their long-term shear behavior.

Keywords: finite element, hybrid girder, shear connections, sustained loading, time dependent behavior

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7 Application of Recycled Tungsten Carbide Powder for Fabrication of Iron Based Powder Metallurgy Alloy

Authors: Yukinori Taniguchi, Kazuyoshi Kurita, Kohei Mizuta, Keigo Nishitani, Ryuichi Fukuda

Abstract:

Tungsten carbide is widely used as a tool material in metal manufacturing process. Since tungsten is typical rare metal, establishment of recycle process of tungsten carbide tools and restore into cemented carbide material bring great impact to metal manufacturing industry. Recently, recycle process of tungsten carbide has been developed and established gradually. However, the demands for quality of cemented carbide tool are quite severe because hardness, toughness, anti-wear ability, heat resistance, fatigue strength and so on should be guaranteed for precision machining and tool life. Currently, it is hard to restore the recycled tungsten carbide powder entirely as raw material for new processed cemented carbide tool. In this study, to suggest positive use of recycled tungsten carbide powder, we have tried to fabricate a carbon based sintered steel which shows reinforced mechanical properties with recycled tungsten carbide powder. We have made set of newly designed sintered steels. Compression test of sintered specimen in density ratio of 0.85 (which means 15% porosity inside) has been conducted. As results, at least 1.7 times higher in nominal strength in the amount of 7.0 wt.% was shown in recycled WC powder. The strength reached to over 600 MPa for the Fe-WC-Co-Cu sintered alloy. Wear test has been conducted by using ball-on-disk type friction tester using 5 mm diameter ball with normal force of 2 N in the dry conditions. Wear amount after 1,000 m running distance shows that about 1.5 times longer life was shown in designed sintered alloy. Since results of tensile test showed that same tendency in previous testing, it is concluded that designed sintered alloy can be used for several mechanical parts with special strength and anti-wear ability in relatively low cost due to recycled tungsten carbide powder.

Keywords: tungsten carbide, recycle process, compression test, powder metallurgy, anti-wear ability

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6 Field Study on Thermal Performance of a Green Office in Bangkok, Thailand: A Possibility of Increasing Temperature Set-Points

Authors: T. Sikram, M. Ichinose, R. Sasaki

Abstract:

In the tropics, indoor thermal environment is usually provided by a cooling mode to maintain comfort all year. Indoor thermal environment performance is sometimes different from the standard or from the first design process because of operation, maintenance, and utilization. The field study of thermal environment in the green building is still limited in this region, while the green building continues to increase. This study aims to clarify thermal performance and subjective perception in the green building by testing the temperature set-points. A Thai green office was investigated twice in October 2018 and in May 2019. Indoor environment variables (temperature, relative humidity, and wind velocity) were collected continuously. The temperature set-point was normally set as 23 °C, and it was changed into 24 °C and 25 °C. The study found that this gap of temperature set-point produced average room temperature from 22.7 to 24.6 °C and average relative humidity from 55% to 62%. Thermal environments slight shifted out of the ASHRAE comfort zone when the set-point was increased. Based on the thermal sensation vote, the feeling-colder vote decreased by 30% and 18% when changing +1 °C and +2 °C, respectively. Predicted mean vote (PMV) shows that most of the calculated median values were negative. The values went close to the optimal neutral value (0) when the set-point was set at 25 °C. The neutral temperature was slightly decreased when changing warmer temperature set-points. Building-related symptom reports were found in this study that the number of votes reduced continuously when the temperature was warmer. The symptoms that occurred by a cooler condition had the number of votes more than ones that occurred by a warmer condition. In sum, for this green office, there is a possibility to adjust a higher temperature set-point to +1 °C (24 °C) in terms of reducing cold sensitivity, discomfort, and symptoms. All results could support the policy of changing a warmer temperature of this office to become “a better green building”.

Keywords: thermal environment, green office, temperature set-point, comfort

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5 Designing Mobile Application to Motivate Young People to Visit Cultural Heritage Sites

Authors: Yuko Hiramatsu, Fumihiro Sato, Atsushi Ito, Hiroyuki Hatano, Mie Sato, Yu Watanabe, Akira Sasaki

Abstract:

This paper presents a mobile phone application developed for sightseeing in Nikko, one of the cultural world heritages in Japan, using the BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy) beacon. Based on our pre-research, we decided to design our application for young people who walk around the area actively, but know little about the tradition and culture of Nikko. One solution is to construct many information boards to explain; however, it is difficult to construct new guide plates in cultural world heritage sites. The smartphone is a good solution to send such information to such visitors. This application was designed using a combination of the smartphone and beacons, set in the area, so that when a tourist passes near a beacon, the application displays information about the area including a map, historical or cultural information about the temples and shrines, and local shops nearby as well as a bus timetable. It is useful for foreigners, too. In addition, we developed quizzes relating to the culture and tradition of Nikko to provide information based on the Zeigarnik effect, a psychological effect. According to the results of our trials, tourists positively evaluated the basic information and young people who used the quiz function were able to learn the historical and cultural points. This application helped young visitors at Nikko to understand the cultural elements of the site. In addition, this application has a function to send notifications. This function is designed to provide information about the local community such as shops, local transportation companies and information office. The application hopes to also encourage people living in the area, and such cooperation from the local people will make this application vivid and inspire young visitors to feel that the cultural heritage site is still alive today. This is a gateway for young people to learn about a traditional place and understand the gravity of preserving such areas.

Keywords: BLE beacon, smartphone application, Zeigarnik effect, world heritage site, school trip

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4 Proposed Design of an Optimized Transient Cavity Picosecond Ultraviolet Laser

Authors: Marilou Cadatal-Raduban, Minh Hong Pham, Duong Van Pham, Tu Nguyen Xuan, Mui Viet Luong, Kohei Yamanoi, Toshihiko Shimizu, Nobuhiko Sarukura, Hung Dai Nguyen

Abstract:

There is a great deal of interest in developing all-solid-state tunable ultrashort pulsed lasers emitting in the ultraviolet (UV) region for applications such as micromachining, investigation of charge carrier relaxation in conductors, and probing of ultrafast chemical processes. However, direct short-pulse generation is not as straight forward in solid-state gain media as it is for near-IR tunable solid-state lasers such as Ti:sapphire due to the difficulty of obtaining continuous wave laser operation, which is required for Kerr lens mode-locking schemes utilizing spatial or temporal Kerr type nonlinearity. In this work, the transient cavity method, which was reported to generate ultrashort laser pulses in dye lasers, is extended to a solid-state gain medium. Ce:LiCAF was chosen among the rare-earth-doped fluoride laser crystals emitting in the UV region because of its broad tunability (from 280 to 325 nm) and enough bandwidth to generate 3-fs pulses, sufficiently large effective gain cross section (6.0 x10⁻¹⁸ cm²) favorable for oscillators, and a high saturation fluence (115 mJ/cm²). Numerical simulations are performed to investigate the spectro-temporal evolution of the broadband UV laser emission from Ce:LiCAF, represented as a system of two homogeneous broadened singlet states, by solving the rate equations extended to multiple wavelengths. The goal is to find the appropriate cavity length and Q-factor to achieve the optimal photon cavity decay time and pumping energy for resonator transients that will lead to ps UV laser emission from a Ce:LiCAF crystal pumped by the fourth harmonics (266nm) of a Nd:YAG laser. Results show that a single ps pulse can be generated from a 1-mm, 1 mol% Ce³⁺-doped LiCAF crystal using an output coupler with 10% reflectivity (low-Q) and an oscillator cavity that is 2-mm long (short cavity). This technique can be extended to other fluoride-based solid-state laser gain media.

Keywords: rare-earth-doped fluoride gain medium, transient cavity, ultrashort laser, ultraviolet laser

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3 Powder Assisted Sheet Forming to Fabricate Ti Capsule Magnetic Hyperthermia Implant

Authors: Keigo Nishitani, Kohei Mizuta Mizuta, Kazuyoshi Kurita, Yukinori Taniguchi

Abstract:

To establish mass production process of Ti capsule which has Fe powder inside as magnetic hyperthermia implant, we assumed that Ti thin sheet can be drawn into a φ1.0 mm die hole through the medium of Fe Powder and becomes outer shell of capsule. This study discusses mechanism of powder assisted deep drawing process by both of numerical simulation and experiment. Ti thin sheet blank was placed on die, and was covered by Fe powder layer without pressurizing. Then upper punch was indented on the Fe powder layer, and the blank can be drawn into die cavity as pressurized powder particles were extruded into die cavity from behind of the drawn blank. Distinct Element Method (DEM) has been used to demonstrate the process. To identify bonding parameters on Fe particles which are cohesion, tensile bond stress and inter particle friction angle, axial and diametrical compression failure test of Fe powder compact was conducted. Several density ratios of powder compacts in range of 0.70 - 0.85 were investigated and relationship between mean stress and equivalent stress was calculated with consideration of critical state line which rules failure criterion in consolidation of Fe powder. Since variation of bonding parameters with density ratio has been experimentally identified, and good agreement has been recognized between several failure tests and its simulation, demonstration of powder assisted sheet forming by using DEM becomes applicable. Results of simulation indicated that indent/drawing length of Ti thin sheet is promoted by smaller Fe particle size, larger indent punch diameter, lower friction coefficient between die surface and Ti sheet and certain degrees of die inlet taper angle. In the deep drawing test, we have made die-set with φ2.4 mm punch and φ1.0 mm die bore diameter. Pure Ti sheet with 100 μm thickness, annealed at 650 deg. C has been tested. After indentation, indented/drawn capsule has been observed by microscope, and its length was measured to discuss the feasibility of this capsulation process. Longer drawing length exists on progressive loading pass comparing with the case of single stroke loading. It is expected that progressive loading has an advantage of which extrusion of powder particle into die cavity with Ti sheet is promoted since powder particle layer can be rebuilt while the punch is withdrawn from the layer in each loading steps. This capsulation phenomenon is qualitatively demonstrated by DEM simulation. Finally, we have fabricated Ti capsule which has Fe powder inside for magnetic hyperthermia cancer care treatment. It is concluded that suggested method is possible to use the manufacturing of Ti capsule implant for magnetic hyperthermia cancer care.

Keywords: metal powder compaction, metal forming, distinct element method, cancer care, magnetic hyperthermia

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2 Study on Electromagnetic Plasma Acceleration Using Rotating Magnetic Field Scheme

Authors: Takeru Furuawa, Kohei Takizawa, Daisuke Kuwahara, Shunjiro Shinohara

Abstract:

In the field of a space propulsion, an electric propulsion system has been developed because its fuel efficiency is much higher than a conventional chemical one. However, the practical electric propulsion systems, e.g., an ion engine, have a problem of short lifetime due to a damage of generation and acceleration electrodes of the plasma. A helicon plasma thruster is proposed as a long-lifetime electric thruster which has non-direct contact electrodes. In this system, both generation and acceleration methods of a dense plasma are executed by antennas from the outside of a discharge tube. Development of the helicon plasma thruster has been conducting under the Helicon Electrodeless Advanced Thruster (HEAT) project. Our helicon plasma thruster has two important processes. First, we generate a dense source plasma using a helicon wave with an excitation frequency between an ion and an electron cyclotron frequencies, fci and fce, respectively, applied from the outside of a discharge using a radio frequency (RF) antenna. The helicon plasma source can provide a high-density (~1019 m-3), a high-ionization ratio (up to several tens of percent), and a high particle generation efficiency. Second, in order to achieve high thrust and specific impulse, we accelerate the dense plasma by the axial Lorentz force fz using the product of the induced azimuthal current jθ and the static radial magnetic field Br, shown as fz = jθ × Br. The HEAT project has proposed several kinds of electrodeless acceleration schemes, and in our particular case, a Rotating Magnetic Field (RMF) method has been extensively studied. The RMF scheme was originally developed as a concept to maintain the Field Reversed Configuration (FRC) in a magnetically confined fusion research. Here, RMF coils are expected to generate jθ due to a nonlinear effect shown below. First, the rotating magnetic field Bω is generated by two pairs of RMF coils with AC currents, which have a phase difference of 90 degrees between the pairs. Due to the Faraday’s law, an axial electric field is induced. Second, an axial current is generated by the effects of an electron-ion and an electron-neutral collisions through the Ohm’s law. Third, the azimuthal electric field is generated by the nonlinear term, and the retarding torque generated by the collision effects again. Then, azimuthal current jθ is generated as jθ = - nₑ er ∙ 2π fRMF. Finally, the axial Lorentz force fz for plasma acceleration is generated. Here, jθ is proportional to nₑ and frequency of RMF coil current fRMF, when Bω is fully penetrated into the plasma. Our previous study has achieved 19 % increase of ion velocity using the 5 MHz and 50 A of the RMF coil power supply. In this presentation, we will show the improvement of the ion velocity using the lower frequency and higher current supplied by RMF power supply. In conclusion, helicon high-density plasma production and electromagnetic acceleration by the RMF scheme with a concept of electrodeless condition have been successfully executed.

Keywords: electric propulsion, electrodeless thruster, helicon plasma, rotating magnetic field

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1 Carbon-Foam Supported Electrocatalysts for Polymer Electrolyte Membrane Fuel Cells

Authors: Albert Mufundirwa, Satoru Yoshioka, K. Ogi, Takeharu Sugiyama, George F. Harrington, Bretislav Smid, Benjamin Cunning, Kazunari Sasaki, Akari Hayashi, Stephen M. Lyth

Abstract:

Polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs) are electrochemical energy conversion devices used for portable, residential and vehicular applications due to their low emissions, high efficiency, and quick start-up characteristics. However, PEMFCs generally use expensive, Pt-based electrocatalysts as electrode catalysts. Due to the high cost and limited availability of platinum, research and development to either drastically reduce platinum loading, or replace platinum with alternative catalysts is of paramount importance. A combination of high surface area supports and nano-structured active sites is essential for effective operation of catalysts. We synthesize carbon foam supports by thermal decomposition of sodium ethoxide, using a template-free, gram scale, cheap, and scalable pyrolysis method. This carbon foam has a high surface area, highly porous, three-dimensional framework which is ideal for electrochemical applications. These carbon foams can have surface area larger than 2500 m²/g, and electron microscopy reveals that they have micron-scale cells, separated by few-layer graphene-like carbon walls. We applied this carbon foam as a platinum catalyst support, resulting in the improved electrochemical surface area and mass activity for the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR), compared to carbon black. Similarly, silver-decorated carbon foams showed higher activity and efficiency for electrochemical carbon dioxide conversion than silver-decorated carbon black. A promising alternative to Pt-catalysts for the ORR is iron-impregnated nitrogen-doped carbon catalysts (Fe-N-C). Doping carbon with nitrogen alters the chemical structure and modulates the electronic properties, allowing a degree of control over the catalytic properties. We have adapted our synthesis method to produce nitrogen-doped carbon foams with large surface area, using triethanolamine as a nitrogen feedstock, in a novel bottom-up protocol. These foams are then infiltrated with iron acetate (FeAc) and pyrolysed to form Fe-N-C foams. The resulting Fe-N-C foam catalysts have high initial activity (half-wave potential of 0.68 VRHE), comparable to that of commercially available Pt-free catalysts (e.g., NPC-2000, Pajarito Powder) in acid solution. In alkaline solution, the Fe-N-C carbon foam catalysts have a half-wave potential of 0.89 VRHE, which is higher than that of NPC-2000 by almost 10 mVRHE, and far out-performing platinum. However, the durability is still a problem at present. The lessons learned from X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), and electrochemical measurements will be used to carefully design Fe-N-C catalysts for higher performance PEMFCs.

Keywords: carbon-foam, polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells, platinum, Pt-free, Fe-N-C, ORR

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