Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 3

Soft Materials Related Abstracts

3 Low Dose In-Line Electron Holography for 3D Atomic Resolution Tomography of Soft Materials

Authors: F. R. Chen, C. Kisielowski, D. Van Dyck

Abstract:

In principle, the latest generation aberration-corrected transmission electron microscopes (TEMs) could achieve sub-Å resolution, but there is bottleneck that hinders the final step towards revealing 3D structure. Firstly, in order to achieve a resolution around 1 Å with single atom sensitivity, the electron dose rate needs to be sufficiently large (10⁴-10⁵eÅ⁻² s⁻¹). With such large dose rate, the electron beam can induce surfaces alterations or even bulk modifications, in particular, for electron beam sensitive (soft) materials such as nm size particles, organic materials, proteins or macro-molecules. We will demonstrate methodology of low dose electron holography for observing 3D structure for soft materials such as single Oleic acid molecules at atomic resolution. The main improvement of this new type of electron holography is based on two concepts. Firstly, the total electron dose is distributed over many images obtained at different defocus values from which the electron hologram is then reconstructed. Secondly, in contrast to the current tomographic methods that require projections from several directions, the 3D structural information of the nano-object is then extracted from this one hologram obtained from only one viewing direction.

Keywords: Soft Materials, low dose electron microscopy, in-line electron holography, atomic resolution tomography

Procedia PDF Downloads 35
2 Rheolaser: Light Scattering Characterization of Viscoelastic Properties of Hair Cosmetics That Are Related to Performance and Stability of the Respective Colloidal Soft Materials

Authors: Heitor Oliveira, Gabriele De-Waal, Juergen Schmenger, Lynsey Godfrey, Tibor Kovacs

Abstract:

Rheolaser MASTER™ makes use of multiple scattering of light, caused by scattering objects in a continuous medium (such as droplets and particles in colloids), to characterize the viscoelasticity of soft materials. It offers an alternative to conventional rheometers to characterize viscoelasticity of products such as hair cosmetics. Up to six simultaneous measurements at controlled temperature can be carried out simultaneously (10-15 min), and the method requires only minor sample preparation work. Conversely to conventional rheometer based methods, no mechanical stress is applied to the material during the measurements. Therefore, the properties of the exact same sample can be monitored over time, like in aging and stability studies. We determined the elastic index (EI) of water/emulsion mixtures (1 ≤ fat alcohols (FA) ≤ 5 wt%) and emulsion/gel-network mixtures (8 ≤ FA ≤ 17 wt%) and compared with the elastic/sorage mudulus (G’) for the respective samples using a TA conventional rheometer with flat plates geometry. As expected, it was found that log(EI) vs log(G’) presents a linear behavior. Moreover, log(EI) increased in a linear fashion with solids level in the entire range of compositions (1 ≤ FA ≤ 17 wt%), while rheometer measurements were limited to samples down to 4 wt% solids level. Alternatively, a concentric cilinder geometry would be required for more diluted samples (FA > 4 wt%) and rheometer results from different sample holder geometries are not comparable. The plot of the rheolaser output parameters solid-liquid balance (SLB) vs EI were suitable to monitor product aging processes. These data could quantitatively describe some observations such as formation of lumps over aging time. Moreover, this method allowed to identify that the different specifications of a key raw material (RM < 0.4 wt%) in the respective gel-network (GN) product has minor impact on product viscoelastic properties and it is not consumer perceivable after a short aging time. Broadening of a RM spec range typically has a positive impact on cost savings. Last but not least, the photon path length (λ*)—proportional to droplet size and inversely proportional to volume fraction of scattering objects, accordingly to the Mie theory—and the EI were suitable to characterize product destabilization processes (e.g., coalescence and creaming) and to predict product stability about eight times faster than our standard methods. Using these parameters we could successfully identify formulation and process parameters that resulted in unstable products. In conclusion, Rheolaser allows quick and reliable characterization of viscoelastic properties of hair cosmetics that are related to their performance and stability. It operates in a broad range of product compositions and has applications spanning from the formulation of our hair cosmetics to fast release criteria in our production sites. Last but not least, this powerful tool has positive impact on R&D development time—faster delivery of new products to the market—and consequently on cost savings.

Keywords: Colloids, Soft Materials, light scattering, viscoelastic properties, hair cosmetics, performance and stability

Procedia PDF Downloads 31
1 Functionalized Ultra-Soft Rubber for Soft Robotics Application

Authors: Amit Das, Shib Shankar Banerjeea, Andreas Ferya, Gert Heinricha

Abstract:

Recently, the growing need for the development of soft robots consisting of highly deformable and compliance materials emerge from the serious limitations of conventional service robots. However, one of the main challenges of soft robotics is to develop such compliance materials, which facilitates the design of soft robotic structures and, simultaneously, controls the soft-body systems, like soft artificial muscles. Generally, silicone or acrylic-based elastomer composites are used for soft robotics. However, mechanical performance and long-term reliabilities of the functional parts (sensors, actuators, main body) of the robot made from these composite materials are inferior. This work will present the development and characterization of robust super-soft programmable elastomeric materials from crosslinked natural rubber that can serve as touch and strain sensors for soft robotic arms with very high elastic properties and strain, while the modulus is altered in the kilopascal range. Our results suggest that such soft natural programmable elastomers can be promising materials and can replace conventional silicone-based elastomer for soft robotics applications.

Keywords: Sensors, Soft Materials, Elastomers, natural rubber

Procedia PDF Downloads 1