Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 23

Search results for: electrokinetic

23 Electrokinetic Remediation of Uranium Contaminated Soil by Ion Exchange Membranes

Authors: Z. H. Shi, T. J. Dou, H. Zhang, H. X. Huang, N. Zeng


The contamination of significant quantities of soils and sediments with uranium and other actinide elements as a result of nuclear activity poses many environmental risks. The electrokinetic process is one of the most promising remediation techniques for sludge, sediment, and saturated or unsaturated soils contaminated with heavy metals and radionuclides. However, secondary waste is a major concern for soil contaminated with nuclides. To minimize the generation of secondary wastes, this study used the anion and cation exchange membranes to improve the performance of the experimental apparatus. Remediation experiments of uranium-contaminated soil were performed with different agents. The results show that using acetic acid and EDTA as chelating agents clearly enhances the migration ability of the uranium. The ion exchange membranes (IEMs) used in the experiments not only reduce secondary wastes, but also, keep the soil pH stable.

Keywords: electrokinetic remediation, ion exchange membranes, soil, uranium

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22 Electrokinetics and Stability of Solder Powders in Aqueous Media

Authors: Terence Lucero F. Menor, Manolo G. Mena, Herman D. Mendoza


Solder pastes are widely used in creating mechanical, thermal and electrical connection between electronic components. Continued miniaturization of consumer electronics drives manufacturers to achieve smaller, lighter, and faster electronic packages at low cost. This faces them to the difficult challenge of dispensing solder pastes in extremely precise and repeatable manner. The most common problem in solder paste dispensing is the clogging of dispensers which results from agglomeration and settling of solder powders leading to increase on the effective particle size and uneven distribution of particles in the mixture. In this work, microelectrophoresis was employed to investigate the effect of pH and KNO₃ concentration on the electrokinetic behavior and stability of SAC305, PbSn5Ag2.5 and Sn powders in aqueous media. Results revealed that the electrokinetic behavior of the three types of solder powders are similar, which was attributed to high SnO₂ content on the surface of the particles. Electrokinetic measurements showed that the zeta potentials of the solder powders are highly dependent on pH and KNO₃ concentration with isoelectric points ranging from 3.5 to 5.5. Results were verified using stability tests.

Keywords: electrokinetic behavior, isoelectric point, solder powder, stability, surface analysis

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21 Electrokinetic Remediation of Nickel Contaminated Clayey Soils

Authors: Waddah S. Abdullah, Saleh M. Al-Sarem


Electrokinetic remediation of contaminated soils has undoubtedly proven to be one of the most efficient techniques used to clean up soils contaminated with polar contaminants (such as heavy metals) and nonpolar organic contaminants. It can efficiently be used to clean up low permeability mud, wastewater, electroplating wastes, sludge, and marine dredging. EK processes have proved to be superior to other conventional methods, such as the pump and treat, and soil washing, since these methods are ineffective in such cases. This paper describes the use of electrokinetic remediation to clean up soils contaminated with nickel. Open cells, as well as advanced cylindrical cells, were used to perform electrokinetic experiments. Azraq green clay (low permeability soil, taken from the east part of Jordan) was used for the experiments. The clayey soil was spiked with 500 ppm of nickel. The EK experiments were conducted under direct current of 80 mA and 50 mA. Chelating agents (NaEDTA), disodium ethylene diamine-tetra-ascetic acid was used to enhance the electroremediation processes. The effect of carbonates presence in soils was, also, investigated by use of sodium carbonate. pH changes in the anode and the cathode compartments were controlled by using buffer solutions. The results showed that the average removal efficiency was 64%, for the Nickel spiked saturated clayey soil.Experiment results have shown that carbonates retarded the remediation process of nickel contaminated soils. Na-EDTA effectively enhanced the decontamination process, with removal efficiency increased from 64% without using the NaEDTA to over 90% after using Na-EDTA.

Keywords: buffer solution, contaminated soils, EDTA enhancement, electrokinetic processes, Nickel contaminated soil, soil remediation

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20 Modeling of Electrokinetic Mixing in Lab on Chip Microfluidic Devices

Authors: Virendra J. Majarikar, Harikrishnan N. Unni


This paper sets to demonstrate a modeling of electrokinetic mixing employing electroosmotic stationary and time-dependent microchannel using alternate zeta patches on the lower surface of the micromixer in a lab on chip microfluidic device. Electroosmotic flow is amplified using different 2D and 3D model designs with alternate and geometric zeta potential values such as 25, 50, and 100 mV, respectively, to achieve high concentration mixing in the electrokinetically-driven microfluidic system. The enhancement of electrokinetic mixing is studied using Finite Element Modeling, and simulation workflow is accomplished with defined integral steps. It can be observed that the presence of alternate zeta patches can help inducing microvortex flows inside the channel, which in turn can improve mixing efficiency. Fluid flow and concentration fields are simulated by solving Navier-Stokes equation (implying Helmholtz-Smoluchowski slip velocity boundary condition) and Convection-Diffusion equation. The effect of the magnitude of zeta potential, the number of alternate zeta patches, etc. are analysed thoroughly. 2D simulation reveals that there is a cumulative increase in concentration mixing, whereas 3D simulation differs slightly with low zeta potential as that of the 2D model within the T-shaped micromixer for concentration 1 mol/m3 and 0 mol/m3, respectively. Moreover, 2D model results were compared with those of 3D to indicate the importance of the 3D model in a microfluidic design process.

Keywords: COMSOL Multiphysics®, electrokinetic, electroosmotic, microfluidics, zeta potential

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19 Use of Electrokinetic Technology to Enhance Chemical and Biological Remediation of Contaminated Sands and Soils

Authors: Brian Wartell, Michel Boufadel


Contaminants such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are compounds present in crude and petroleum oils and are known to be toxic and often carcinogenic. Therefore, a major effort is placed on tracking their subsurface soil concentrations following an oil spill. The PAHs can persist for years in the subsurface especially if there is a lack of oxygen. Both aerobic and anaerobic biodegradation of PAHs encounter the difficulties of both nutrient transport and bioavailability (proximal access) to the organisms of the contaminants. A technology, known as electrokinetics (EK or EK-BIO for ‘electrokinetic bioremediation’) has been found to transport efficiently nutrients or other chemicals in the subsurface. Experiments were conducted to demonstrate migration patterns in both sands and clay for both ionic and nonionic compounds and aerobic biodegradation studies were conducted with soil spiked with Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons yielding interesting results. In one set of experiment, Self-designed electrokinetic setups were constructed to examine the differences in electromigration and electroosmotic rates. Anionic and non-ionic dyes were used to visualize these phenomena, respectively. In another experiment, a silt-clay soil was spiked with three low-molecular-weight compounds (fluorene, phenanthrene, fluoranthene) and placed within self-designed electrokinetic setups and monitored for aerobic degradation. Plans for additional studies are in progress including the transport of peroxide through anaerobic sands.

Keywords: bioavailability, bioremediation, electrokinetics, subsurface transport

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18 Electrokinetic Application for the Improvement of Soft Clays

Authors: Abiola Ayopo Abiodun, Zalihe Nalbantoglu


The electrokinetic application (EKA), a relatively modern chemical treatment has a potential for in-situ ground improvement in an open field or under existing structures. It utilizes a low electrical gradient to transport electrolytic chemical ions between bespoke electrodes inserted in the fine-grained, low permeable soft soils. The paper investigates the efficacy of the EKA as a mitigation technique for the soft clay beds. The laboratory model of the EKA comprises of rectangular plexiglass test tank, electrolytes compartments, geosynthetic electrodes and direct electric current supply. Within this setup, the EK effects resulted from the exchange of ions between anolyte (anodic) and catholyte (cathodic) ends through the tested soil were examined by basic experimental laboratory testing methods. As such, the treated soft soil properties were investigated as a function of the anode-to-cathode distances and curing periods. The test results showed that there have been some changes in the physical and engineering properties of the treated soft soils. The significant changes in the physicochemical and electrical properties suggested that their corresponding changes can be utilized as a monitoring technique to evaluate the improvement in the engineering properties EK treated soft clay soils.

Keywords: electrokinetic, electrolytes, exchange ions, geosynthetic electrodes, soft soils

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17 Removal of Mixed Heavy Metals from Contaminated Clay Soils Using Pulsed Electrokinetic Process

Authors: Nuhu Dalhat Mu’azu, Abdullahi Usman, A. Bukhari, Muhammad Hussain Essa, Salihu Lukman


Electrokinetic remediation process was employed for the removal of four (4) heavy metals (Cr, Cu, Hg and Pb) from contaminated clay and bentonite soils under pulsed current supply mode. The effects of voltage gradient, pulse duty cycle and bentonite/clay ratio on the simultaneous removal efficiencies of the heavy metals were investigated. A total of thirteen experiments were designed and conducted according to factorial design with each experiment allowed to continuously ran for 3 weeks. Results obtained showed that increase in bentonite ratio decreased the removal efficiency of the heavy metals with no significant effect on the energy consumption. Conversely, increase in both voltage gradient and pulse duty cycle increased the heavy metals removal efficiencies with increased in energy consumption. Additionally, increase in voltage gradient increased the electrical conductivity and the soil pH due to due to continuous refill and replacement of process fluids as they decomposed under the induced voltage gradient. Under different operating conditions, the maximum removal efficiencies obtained for Cr, Cu, Hg, and Pb were 21.87, 83.2, 62.4, 78.06 and 16.65% respectively.

Keywords: clay, bentonite, soil remediation, mixed contaminants, heavy metals, and electrokinetic-adsorption

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16 Preparation of Chromium Nanoparticles on Carbon Substrate from Tannery Waste Solution by Chemical Method Compared to Electrokinetic Process

Authors: Mahmoud A. Rabah, Said El Sheikh


This work shows the preparation of chromium nanoparticles from tannery waste solution on glassy carbon by chemical method compared to electrokinetic process. The waste solution contains free and soluble fats, calcium, iron, magnesium and high sodium in addition to the chromium ions. Filtration helps removal of insoluble matters. Diethyl ether successfully extracted soluble fats. The method started by removing calcium as insoluble oxalate salts at hot conditions in a faint acidic medium. The filtrate contains iron, magnesium, chromium ions and sodium chloride in excess. Chromium was separated selectively as insoluble hydroxide sol-gel at pH 6.5, filtered and washed with distilled water. Part of the gel reacted with sulfuric acid to produce chromium sulfate solution having 15-25 g/L concentration. Electrokinetic deposition of chromium nanoparticles on a carbon cathode was carried out using platinum anode under different galvanostatic conditions. The chemical method involved impregnating the carbon specimens with chromium hydroxide gel followed by reduction using hydrazine hydrate or by thermal reduction using hydrogen gas at 1250°C. Chromium grain size was characterized by TEM, FT-IR and SEM. Properties of the Cr grains were correlated to the conditions of the preparation process. Electrodeposition was found to control chromium particles to be more identical in size and shape as compared to the chemical method.

Keywords: chromium, electrodeposition, nanoparticles, tannery waste solution

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15 Electrode Engineering for On-Chip Liquid Driving by Using Electrokinetic Effect

Authors: Reza Hadjiaghaie Vafaie, Aysan Madanpasandi, Behrooz Zare Desari, Seyedmohammad Mousavi


High lamination in microchannel is one of the main challenges in on-chip components like micro total analyzer systems and lab-on-a-chips. Electro-osmotic force is highly effective in chip-scale. This research proposes a microfluidic-based micropump for low ionic strength solutions. Narrow microchannels are designed to generate an efficient electroosmotic flow near the walls. Microelectrodes are embedded in the lateral sides and actuated by low electric potential to generate pumping effect inside the channel. Based on the simulation study, the fluid velocity increases by increasing the electric potential amplitude. We achieve a net flow velocity of 100 µm/s, by applying +/- 2 V to the electrode structures. Our proposed low voltage design is of interest in conventional lab-on-a-chip applications.

Keywords: integration, electrokinetic, on-chip, fluid pumping, microfluidic

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14 Simulation and Characterization of Stretching and Folding in Microchannel Electrokinetic Flows

Authors: Justo Rodriguez, Daming Chen, Amador M. Guzman


The detection, treatment, and control of rapidly propagating, deadly viruses such as COVID-19, require the development of inexpensive, fast, and accurate devices to address the urgent needs of the population. Microfluidics-based sensors are amongst the different methods and techniques for detection that are easy to use. A micro analyzer is defined as a microfluidics-based sensor, composed of a network of microchannels with varying functions. Given their size, portability, and accuracy, they are proving to be more effective and convenient than other solutions. A micro analyzer based on the concept of “Lab on a Chip” presents advantages concerning other non-micro devices due to its smaller size, and it is having a better ratio between useful area and volume. The integration of multiple processes in a single microdevice reduces both the number of necessary samples and the analysis time, leading the next generation of analyzers for the health-sciences. In some applications, the flow of solution within the microchannels is originated by a pressure gradient, which can produce adverse effects on biological samples. A more efficient and less dangerous way of controlling the flow in a microchannel-based analyzer is applying an electric field to induce the fluid motion and either enhance or suppress the mixing process. Electrokinetic flows are characterized by no less than two non-dimensional parameters: the electric Rayleigh number and its geometrical aspect ratio. In this research, stable and unstable flows have been studied numerically (and when possible, will be experimental) in a T-shaped microchannel. Additionally, unstable electrokinetic flows for Rayleigh numbers higher than critical have been characterized. The flow mixing enhancement was quantified in relation to the stretching and folding that fluid particles undergo when they are subjected to supercritical electrokinetic flows. Computational simulations were carried out using a finite element-based program while working with the flow mixing concepts developed by Gollub and collaborators. Hundreds of seeded massless particles were tracked along the microchannel from the entrance to exit for both stable and unstable flows. After post-processing, their trajectories, the folding and stretching values for the different flows were found. Numerical results show that for supercritical electrokinetic flows, the enhancement effects of the folding and stretching processes become more apparent. Consequently, there is an improvement in the mixing process, ultimately leading to a more homogenous mixture.

Keywords: microchannel, stretching and folding, electro kinetic flow mixing, micro-analyzer

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13 Technology of Electrokinetic Disintegration of Virginia Fanpetals (Sida hermaphrodita) Biomass in a Biogas Production System

Authors: Mirosław Krzemieniewski, Marcin Zieliński, Marcin Dębowski


Electrokinetic disintegration is one of the high-voltage electric methods. The design of systems is exceptionally simple. Biomass flows through a system of pipes with alongside mounted electrodes that generate an electric field. Discharges in the electric field deform cell walls and lead to their successive perforation, thereby making their contents easily available to bacteria. The spark-over occurs between electrode surface and pipe jacket which is the second pole and closes the circuit. The value of voltage ranges from 10 to 100kV. Electrodes are supplied by normal “power grid” monophase electric current (230V, 50Hz). Next, the electric current changes into direct current of 24V in modules serving for particular electrodes, and this current directly feeds the electrodes. The installation is completely safe because the value of generated current does not exceed 250mA and because conductors are grounded. Therefore, there is no risk of electric shock posed to the personnel, even in the case of failure or incorrect connection. Low values of the electric current mean small energy consumption by the electrode which is extremely low – only 35W per electrode – compared to other methods of disintegration. Pipes with electrodes with diameter of DN150 are made of acid-proof steel and connected from both sides with 90º elbows ended with flanges. The available S and U types of pipes enable very convenient fitting with system construction in the existing installations and rooms or facilitate space management in new applications. The system of pipes for electrokinetic disintegration may be installed horizontally, vertically, askew, on special stands or also directly on the wall of a room. The number of pipes and electrodes is determined by operating conditions as well as the quantity of substrate, type of biomass, content of dry matter, method of disintegration (single or circulatory), mounting site etc. The most effective method involves pre-treatment of substrate that may be pumped through the disintegration system on the way to the fermentation tank or recirculated in a buffered intermediate tank (substrate mixing tank). Biomass structure destruction in the process of electrokinetic disintegration causes shortening of substrate retention time in the tank and acceleration of biogas production. A significant intensification of the fermentation process was observed in the systems operating in the technical scale, with the greatest increase in biogas production reaching 18%. The secondary, but highly significant for the energetic balance, effect is a tangible decrease of energy input by agitators in tanks. It is due to reduced viscosity of the biomass after disintegration, and may result in energy savings reaching even 20-30% of the earlier noted consumption. Other observed phenomena include reduction in the layer of surface scum, reduced sewage capability for foaming and successive decrease in the quantity of bottom sludge banks. Considering the above, the system for electrokinetic disintegration seems a very interesting and valuable solutions meeting the offer of specialist equipment for the processing of plant biomass, including Virginia fanpetals, before the process of methane fermentation.

Keywords: electrokinetic disintegration, biomass, biogas production, fermentation, Virginia fanpetals

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12 Electroremediation of Saturated and Unsaturated Nickel-Contaminated Soils

Authors: Waddah Abdullah, Saleh Al-Sarem


Electrokinetic remediation was undoubtedly proven to be one of the most efficient techniques used to clean up soils contaminated with polar charged contaminants (such as heavy metals) and non-polar organic contaminants. It can be efficiently used to clean up low permeability mud, wastewater, electroplating wastes, sludge, and marine dredging. This study presented and discussed the results of electrokinetic remediation processes to clean up soils contaminated with nickel. Two types of electrokinetics cells were used: an open cell and an advanced cylindrical cell. Two types of soils were used for this investigation; the Azraq green clay which has very low permeability taken from the eastern part of Jordan (city of Azraq) and a sandy soil having, relatively, very high permeability. The clayey soil was spiked with 500 ppm of nickel, and the sandy soil was spiked with 1500 ppm of nickel. Fully saturated and partially saturated clayey soils were used for the clean-up process. Clayey soils were tested under a direct current of 80 mA and 50 mA to study the effect of the electrical current on the remediation process. Chelating agent (Na-EDTA), disodium ethylene diamine tetraacetatic acid, was used in both types of soils to enhance the electroremediation process. The effect of carbonates presence in the contaminated soils, also, was investigated by use of sodium carbonate and calcium carbonate. pH changes in the anode and the cathode compartments were controlled by use of buffer solutions. The results of the investigation showed that for the fully saturated clayey soil spiked with nickel had an average removal efficiency of 64%, and the average removal efficiency was 46% for the unsaturated clayey soil. For the sandy soil, the average removal efficiency of Nickel was 90%. Test results showed that presence of carbonates in the remediated soils retarded the clean-up process of nickel-contaminated soils (removal efficiency was reduced from 90% to 60%). EDTA enhanced decontamination of nickel contaminated clayey and sandy soils with carbonates was studied. The average removal efficiency increased from 60% (prior to using EDTA) to more than 90% after using EDTA.

Keywords: buffer solution, EDTA, electroremediation, nickel removal efficiency

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11 Electrical Tortuosity across Electrokinetically Remediated Soils

Authors: Waddah S. Abdullah, Khaled F. Al-Omari


Electrokinetic remediation is one of the most influential and effective methods to decontaminate contaminated soils. Electroosmosis and electromigration are the processes of electrochemical extraction of contaminants from soils. The driving force that causes removing contaminants from soils (electroosmosis process or electromigration process) is voltage gradient. Therefore, the electric field distribution throughout the soil domain is extremely important to investigate and to determine the factors that help to establish a uniform electric field distribution in order to make the clean-up process work properly and efficiently. In this study, small-sized passive electrodes (made of graphite) were placed at predetermined locations within the soil specimen, and the voltage drop between these passive electrodes was measured in order to observe the electrical distribution throughout the tested soil specimens. The electrokinetic test was conducted on two types of soils; a sandy soil and a clayey soil. The electrical distribution throughout the soil domain was conducted with different tests properties; and the electrical field distribution was observed in three-dimensional pattern in order to establish the electrical distribution within the soil domain. The effects of density, applied voltages, and degree of saturation on the electrical distribution within the remediated soil were investigated. The distribution of the moisture content, concentration of the sodium ions, and the concentration of the calcium ions were determined and established in three-dimensional scheme. The study has shown that the electrical conductivity within soil domain depends on the moisture content and concentration of electrolytes present in the pore fluid. The distribution of the electrical field in the saturated soil was found not be affected by its density. The study has also shown that high voltage gradient leads to non-uniform electric field distribution within the electroremediated soil. Very importantly, it was found that even when the electric field distribution is uniform globally (i.e. between the passive electrodes), local non-uniformity could be established within the remediated soil mass. Cracks or air gaps formed due to temperature rise (because of electric flow in low conductivity regions) promotes electrical tortuosity. Thus, fracturing or cracking formed in the remediated soil mass causes disconnection of electric current and hence, no removal of contaminant occur within these areas.

Keywords: contaminant removal, electrical tortuousity, electromigration, electroosmosis, voltage distribution

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10 Enhancement of Mass Transport and Separations of Species in a Electroosmotic Flow by Distinct Oscillatory Signals

Authors: Carlos Teodoro, Oscar Bautista


In this work, we analyze theoretically the mass transport in a time-periodic electroosmotic flow through a parallel flat plate microchannel under different periodic functions of the applied external electric field. The microchannel connects two reservoirs having different constant concentrations of an electro-neutral solute, and the zeta potential of the microchannel walls are assumed to be uniform. The governing equations that allow determining the mass transport in the microchannel are given by the Poisson-Boltzmann equation, the modified Navier-Stokes equations, where the Debye-Hückel approximation is considered (the zeta potential is less than 25 mV), and the species conservation. These equations are nondimensionalized and four dimensionless parameters appear which control the mass transport phenomenon. In this sense, these parameters are an angular Reynolds, the Schmidt and the Péclet numbers, and an electrokinetic parameter representing the ratio of the half-height of the microchannel to the Debye length. To solve the mathematical model, first, the electric potential is determined from the Poisson-Boltzmann equation, which allows determining the electric force for various periodic functions of the external electric field expressed as Fourier series. In particular, three different excitation wave forms of the external electric field are assumed, a) sawteeth, b) step, and c) a periodic irregular functions. The periodic electric forces are substituted in the modified Navier-Stokes equations, and the hydrodynamic field is derived for each case of the electric force. From the obtained velocity fields, the species conservation equation is solved and the concentration fields are found. Numerical calculations were done by considering several binary systems where two dilute species are transported in the presence of a carrier. It is observed that there are different angular frequencies of the imposed external electric signal where the total mass transport of each species is the same, independently of the molecular diffusion coefficient. These frequencies are called crossover frequencies and are obtained graphically at the intersection when the total mass transport is plotted against the imposed frequency. The crossover frequencies are different depending on the Schmidt number, the electrokinetic parameter, the angular Reynolds number, and on the type of signal of the external electric field. It is demonstrated that the mass transport through the microchannel is strongly dependent on the modulation frequency of the applied particular alternating electric field. Possible extensions of the analysis to more complicated pulsation profiles are also outlined.

Keywords: electroosmotic flow, mass transport, oscillatory flow, species separation

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9 Oscillatory Electroosmotic Flow in a Microchannel with Slippage at the Walls and Asymmetric Wall Zeta Potentials

Authors: Oscar Bautista, Jose Arcos


In this work, we conduct a theoretical analysis of an oscillatory electroosmotic flow in a parallel-plate microchannel taking into account slippage at the microchannel walls. The governing equations given by the Poisson-Boltzmann (with the Debye-Huckel approximation) and momentum equations are nondimensionalized from which four dimensionless parameters appear; a Reynolds angular number, the ratio between the zeta potentials of the microchannel walls, the electrokinetic parameter and the dimensionless slip length which measures the competition between the Navier slip length and the half height microchannel. The principal results indicate that the slippage has a strong influence on the magnitude of the oscillatory electroosmotic flow increasing the velocity magnitude up to 50% for the numerical values used in this work.

Keywords: electroosmotic flows, oscillatory flow, slippage, microchannel

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8 Studies on Modified Zinc Oxide Nanoparticles as Potential Drug Carrier

Authors: Jolanta Pulit-Prociak, Olga Dlugosz, Marcin Banach


The toxicity of bare zinc oxide nanoparticles used as drug carriers may be the result of releasing zinc ions. Thus, zinc oxide nanoparticles modified with galactose were obtained. The process of their formation was conducted in the microwave field. The physicochemical properties of the obtained products were studied. The size and electrokinetic potential were defined by using dynamic light scattering technique. The crystalline properties were assessed by X-ray diffractometry. In order to confirm the formation of the desired products, Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy was used. The releasing of zinc ions from the prepared products when comparing to the bare oxide was analyzed. It was found out that modification of zinc oxide nanoparticles with galactose limits the releasing of zinc ions which are responsible for the toxic effect of the whole carrier-drug conjugate.

Keywords: nanomaterials, zinc oxide, drug delivery system, toxicity

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7 Chemical and Biomolecular Detection at a Polarizable Electrical Interface

Authors: Nicholas Mavrogiannis, Francesca Crivellari, Zachary Gagnon


Development of low-cost, rapid, sensitive and portable biosensing systems are important for the detection and prevention of disease in developing countries, biowarfare/antiterrorism applications, environmental monitoring, point-of-care diagnostic testing and for basic biological research. Currently, the most established commercially available and widespread assays for portable point of care detection and disease testing are paper-based dipstick and lateral flow test strips. These paper-based devices are often small, cheap and simple to operate. The last three decades in particular have seen an emergence in these assays in diagnostic settings for detection of pregnancy, HIV/AIDS, blood glucose, Influenza, urinary protein, cardiovascular disease, respiratory infections and blood chemistries. Such assays are widely available largely because they are inexpensive, lightweight, and portable, are simple to operate, and a few platforms are capable of multiplexed detection for a small number of sample targets. However, there is a critical need for sensitive, quantitative and multiplexed detection capabilities for point-of-care diagnostics and for the detection and prevention of disease in the developing world that cannot be satisfied by current state-of-the-art paper-based assays. For example, applications including the detection of cardiac and cancer biomarkers and biothreat applications require sensitive multiplexed detection of analytes in the nM and pM range, and cannot currently be satisfied with current inexpensive portable platforms due to their lack of sensitivity, quantitative capabilities and often unreliable performance. In this talk, inexpensive label-free biomolecular detection at liquid interfaces using a newly discovered electrokinetic phenomenon known as fluidic dielectrophoresis (fDEP) is demonstrated. The electrokinetic approach involves exploiting the electrical mismatches between two aqueous liquid streams forced to flow side-by-side in a microfluidic T-channel. In this system, one fluid stream is engineered to have a higher conductivity relative to its neighbor which has a higher permittivity. When a “low” frequency (< 1 MHz) alternating current (AC) electrical field is applied normal to this fluidic electrical interface the fluid stream with high conductivity displaces into the low conductive stream. Conversely, when a “high” frequency (20MHz) AC electric field is applied, the high permittivity stream deflects across the microfluidic channel. There is, however, a critical frequency sensitive to the electrical differences between each fluid phase – the fDEP crossover frequency – between these two events where no fluid deflection is observed, and the interface remains fixed when exposed to an external field. To perform biomolecular detection, two streams flow side-by-side in a microfluidic T-channel: one fluid stream with an analyte of choice and an adjacent stream with a specific receptor to the chosen target. The two fluid streams merge and the fDEP crossover frequency is measured at different axial positions down the resulting liquid

Keywords: biodetection, fluidic dielectrophoresis, interfacial polarization, liquid interface

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6 Electrokinetic Transport of Power Law Fluid through Hydrophobic Micro-Slits

Authors: Ainul Haque, Ameeye Kumar Nayak


Flow enhancement and species transport in a slit hydrophobic microchannel is studied for non-Newtonian fluids with the externally imposed electric field and pressure gradient. The incompressible Poisson-Nernst-Plank equations and the Navier-Stokes equations are approximated by lubrication theory to quantify the flow structure due to hydrophobic and hydrophilic surfaces. The analytical quantification of velocity and pressure of electroosmotic flow (EOF) is made with the numerical results due to the staggered grid based finite volume method for flow governing equations. The resistance force due to fluid friction and shear force along the surface are decreased by the hydrophobicity, enables the faster movement of fluid particles. The resulting flow enhancement factor Ef is increased with the low viscous fluid and provides maximum species transport. Also, the analytical comparison of EOF with pressure driven EOF justifies the flow enhancement due to hydrophobicity and shear impact on flow variation.

Keywords: electroosmotic flow, hydrophobic surface, power-law fluid, shear effect

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5 Surface Sunctionalization Strategies for the Design of Thermoplastic Microfluidic Devices for New Analytical Diagnostics

Authors: Camille Perréard, Yoann Ladner, Fanny D'Orlyé, Stéphanie Descroix, Vélan Taniga, Anne Varenne, Cédric Guyon, Michael. Tatoulian, Frédéric Kanoufi, Cyrine Slim, Sophie Griveau, Fethi Bedioui


The development of micro total analysis systems is of major interest for contaminant and biomarker analysis. As a lab-on-chip integrates all steps of an analysis procedure in a single device, analysis can be performed in an automated format with reduced time and cost, while maintaining performances comparable to those of conventional chromatographic systems. Moreover, these miniaturized systems are either compatible with field work or glovebox manipulations. This work is aimed at developing an analytical microsystem for trace and ultra trace quantitation in complex matrices. The strategy consists in the integration of a sample pretreatment step within the lab-on-chip by a confinement zone where selective ligands are immobilized for target extraction and preconcentration. Aptamers were chosen as selective ligands, because of their high affinity for all types of targets (from small ions to viruses and cells) and their ease of synthesis and functionalization. This integrated target extraction and concentration step will be followed in the microdevice by an electrokinetic separation step and an on-line detection. Polymers consisting of cyclic olefin copolymer (COC) or fluoropolymer (Dyneon THV) were selected as they are easy to mold, transparent in UV-visible and have high resistance towards solvents and extreme pH conditions. However, because of their low chemical reactivity, surface treatments are necessary. For the design of this miniaturized diagnostics, we aimed at modifying the microfluidic system at two scales : (1) on the entire surface of the microsystem to control the surface hydrophobicity (so as to avoid any sample wall adsorption) and the fluid flows during electrokinetic separation, or (2) locally so as to immobilize selective ligands (aptamers) on restricted areas for target extraction and preconcentration. We developed different novel strategies for the surface functionalization of COC and Dyneon, based on plasma, chemical and /or electrochemical approaches. In a first approach, a plasma-induced immobilization of brominated derivatives was performed on the entire surface. Further substitution of the bromine by an azide functional group led to covalent immobilization of ligands through “click” chemistry reaction between azides and terminal alkynes. COC and Dyneon materials were characterized at each step of the surface functionalization procedure by various complementary techniques to evaluate the quality and homogeneity of the functionalization (contact angle, XPS, ATR). With the objective of local (micrometric scale) aptamer immobilization, we developed an original electrochemical strategy on engraved Dyneon THV microchannel. Through local electrochemical carbonization followed by adsorption of azide-bearing diazonium moieties and covalent linkage of alkyne-bearing aptamers through click chemistry reaction, typical dimensions of immobilization zones reached the 50 µm range. Other functionalization strategies, such as sol-gel encapsulation of aptamers, are currently investigated and may also be suitable for the development of the analytical microdevice. The development of these functionalization strategies is the first crucial step in the design of the entire microdevice. These strategies allow the grafting of a large number of molecules for the development of new analytical tools in various domains like environment or healthcare.

Keywords: alkyne-azide click chemistry (CuAAC), electrochemical modification, microsystem, plasma bromination, surface functionalization, thermoplastic polymers

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4 Application of Stabilized Polyaniline Microparticles for Better Protective Ability of Zinc Coatings

Authors: N. Boshkova, K. Kamburova, N. Tabakova, N. Boshkov, Ts. Radeva


Coatings based on polyaniline (PANI) can improve the resistance of steel against corrosion. In this work, the preparation of stable suspensions of colloidal PANI-SiO2 particles, suitable for obtaining of composite anticorrosive coating on steel, is described. Electrokinetic data as a function of pH are presented, showing that the zeta potentials of the PANI-SiO2 particles are governed primarily by the charged groups at the silica oxide surface. Electrosteric stabilization of the PANI-SiO2 particles’ suspension against aggregation is realized at pH>5.5 (EB form of PANI) by adsorption of positively charged polyelectrolyte molecules onto negatively charged PANI-SiO2 particles. The PANI-SiO2 particles are incorporated by electrodeposition into the metal matrix of zinc in order to obtain composite (hybrid) coatings. The latter are aimed to ensure sacrificial protection of steel mainly in aggressive media leading to local corrosion damages. The surface morphology of the composite zinc coatings is investigated with SEM. The influence of PANI-SiO2 particles on the cathodic and anodic processes occurring in the starting electrolyte for obtaining of the coatings is followed with cyclic voltammetry. The electrochemical and corrosion behavior is evaluated with potentiodynamic polarization curves and polarization resistance measurements. The beneficial effect of the stabilized PANI-SiO2 particles for the increased protective ability of the composites is commented and discussed.

Keywords: corrosion, polyaniline-silica particles, zinc, protective ability

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3 Oscillatory Electroosmotic Flow of Power-Law Fluids in a Microchannel

Authors: Rubén Bãnos, José Arcos, Oscar Bautista, Federico Méndez


The Oscillatory electroosmotic flow (OEOF) in power law fluids through a microchannel is studied numerically. A time-dependent external electric field (AC) is suddenly imposed at the ends of the microchannel which induces the fluid motion. The continuity and momentum equations in the x and y direction for the flow field were simplified in the limit of the lubrication approximation theory (LAT), and then solved using a numerical scheme. The solution of the electric potential is based on the Debye-H¨uckel approximation which suggest that the surface potential is small,say, smaller than 0.025V and for a symmetric (z : z) electrolyte. Our results suggest that the velocity profiles across the channel-width are controlled by the following dimensionless parameters: the angular Reynolds number, Reω, the electrokinetic parameter, ¯κ, defined as the ratio of the characteristic length scale to the Debye length, the parameter λ which represents the ratio of the Helmholtz-Smoluchowski velocity to the characteristic length scale and the flow behavior index, n. Also, the results reveal that the velocity profiles become more and more non-uniform across the channel-width as the Reω and ¯κ are increased, so oscillatory OEOF can be really useful in micro-fluidic devices such as micro-mixers.

Keywords: low zeta potentials, non-newtonian, oscillatory electroosmotic flow, power-law model

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2 Formation of Stable Aqueous Dispersions of Polyaniline-Silica Particles for Application in Anticorrosive Coatings on Steel

Authors: K. Kamburova, N. Boshkova, N. Boshkov, T. Radeva


Coatings based on polyaniline (PANI) can improve the resistance of steel against corrosion. Two forms of PANI are generally accepted to have effective protection of steel: the conducting emeraldine salt (ES) and the non-conducting emeraldine base (EB). The ability to intercept electrons at the metal surface and to transport them is typically attributed to ES, while the success of EB as an anticorrosive additive in the coating is attributed to its ability to oxidize and reduce in a reversible way. This electrochemical mechanism is probably combined with barrier effect against corrosion species. In this work, we describe the preparation of stable suspensions of colloidal PANI-SiO₂ particles, suitable for obtaining of composite anticorrosive coating on steel. Electrokinetic data as a function of pH are presented, showing that the zeta potentials of the PANI-SiO₂ particles are governed primarily by the charged groups at the silica oxide surface. Electrosteric stabilization of the PANI-SiO₂ particles’ suspension against aggregation is realized at pH > 5.5 (EB form of PANI) by adsorption of positively charged polyelectrolyte molecules onto negatively charged PANI-SiO₂ particles. We anticipate that incorporation of the small particles will provide a more homogeneous distribution in the coating matrix and will decrease the negative effect on barrier properties of the composite coating.

Keywords: particles, stable dispersion, composite coatings, corrosion protection

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1 Laboratory Assessment of Electrical Vertical Drains in Composite Soils Using Kaolin and Bentonite Clays

Authors: Maher Z. Mohammed, Barry G. Clarke


As an alternative to stone column in fine grained soils, it is possible to create stiffened columns of soils using electroosmosis (electroosmotic piles). This program of this research is to establish the effectiveness and efficiency of the process in different soils. The aim of this study is to assess the capability of electroosmosis treatment in a range of composite soils. The combined electroosmotic and preloading equipment developed by Nizar and Clarke (2013) was used with an octagonal array of anodes surrounding a single cathode in a nominal 250mm diameter 300mm deep cylinder of soil and 80mm anode to cathode distance. Copper coiled springs were used as electrodes to allow the soil to consolidate either due to an external vertical applied load or electroosmosis. The equipment was modified to allow the temperature to be monitored during the test. Electroosmotic tests were performed on China Clay Grade E kaolin and calcium bentonite (Bentonex CB) mixed with sand fraction C (BS 1881 part 131) at different ratios by weight; (0, 23, 33, 50 and 67%) subjected to applied voltages (5, 10, 15 and 20). The soil slurry was prepared by mixing the dry soil with water to 1.5 times the liquid limit of the soil mixture. The mineralogical and geotechnical properties of the tested soils were measured before the electroosmosis treatment began. In the electroosmosis cell tests, the settlement, expelled water, variation of electrical current and applied voltage, and the generated heat was monitored during the test time for 24 osmotic tests. Water content was measured at the end of each test. The electroosmotic tests are divided into three phases. In Phase 1, 15 kPa was applied to simulate a working platform and produce a uniform soil which had been deposited as a slurry. 50 kPa was used in Phase 3 to simulate a surcharge load. The electroosmotic treatment was only performed during Phase 2 where a constant voltage was applied through the electrodes in addition to the 15 kPa pressure. This phase was stopped when no further water was expelled from the cell, indicating the electroosmotic process had stopped due to either the degradation of the anode or the flow due to the hydraulic gradient exactly balanced the electroosmotic flow resulting in no flow. Control tests for each soil mixture were carried out to assess the behaviour of the soil samples subjected to only an increase of vertical pressure, which is 15kPa in Phase 1 and 50kPa in Phase 3. Analysis of the experimental results from this study showed a significant dewatering effect on the soil slurries. The water discharged by the electroosmotic treatment process decreased as the sand content increased. Soil temperature increased significantly when electrical power was applied and drops when applied DC power turned off or when the electrode degraded. The highest increase in temperature was found in pure clays at higher applied voltage after about 8 hours of electroosmosis test.

Keywords: electrokinetic treatment, electrical conductivity, electroosmotic consolidation, electroosmosis permeability ratio

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