Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 357

Search results for: X-ray

357 Analysis of Structural and Photocatalytical Properties of Anatase, Rutile and Mixed Phase TiO2 Films Deposited by Pulsed-Direct Current and Radio Frequency Magnetron Co-Sputtering

Authors: S. Varnagiris, M. Urbonavicius, S. Tuckute, M. Lelis, K. Bockute

Abstract:

Amongst many water purification techniques, TiO2 photocatalysis is recognized as one of the most promising sustainable methods. It is known that for photocatalytical applications anatase is the most suitable TiO2 phase, however heterojunction of anatase/rutile phases could improve the photocatalytical activity of TiO2 even further. Despite the relative simplicity of TiO2 different synthesis methods lead to the highly dispersed crystal phases and photocatalytic activity of the corresponding samples. Accordingly, suggestions and investigations of various innovative methods of TiO2 synthesis are still needed. In this work structural and photocatalytical properties of TiO2 films deposited by the unconventional method of simultaneous co-sputtering from two magnetrons powered by pulsed-Direct Current (pDC) and Radio Frequency (RF) power sources with negative bias voltage have been studied. More specifically, TiO2 film thickness, microstructure, surface roughness, crystal structure, optical transmittance and photocatalytical properties were investigated by profilometer, scanning electron microscope, atomic force microscope, X-ray diffractometer and UV-Vis spectrophotometer respectively. The proposed unconventional two magnetron co-sputtering based TiO2 film formation method showed very promising results for crystalline TiO2 film formation while keeping process temperatures below 100 °C. XRD analysis revealed that by using proper combination of power source type and bias voltage various TiO2 phases (amorphous, anatase, rutile or their mixture) can be synthesized selectively. Moreover, strong dependency between power source type and surface roughness, as well as between the bias voltage and band gap value of TiO2 films was observed. Interestingly, TiO2 films deposited by two magnetron co-sputtering without bias voltage had one of the highest band gap values between the investigated films but its photocatalytic activity was superior compared to all other samples. It is suggested that this is due to the dominating nanocrystalline anatase phase with various exposed surfaces including photocatalytically the most active {001}.

Keywords: Films, magnetron co-sputtering, photocatalysis, TiO2.

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356 Association of Smoking with Chest Radiographic and Lung Function Findings in Retired Bauxite Mining Workers

Authors: L. R. Ferreira, R. C. G. Bianchi, L. C.R. Ferreira, C. M. Galhardi, E. P. Baciuk, L. H. Oliveira

Abstract:

Inhalation hazards are associated with potentially injurious exposure and increased risk for lung diseases, within the bauxite mining industry, especially for the smelter workers. Smoking is related to decreased lung function and leads to chronic lung diseases. This study had the objective to evaluate whether smoking is related to functional and radiographic respiratory changes in retired bauxite mining workers. Methods: This was a retrospective and cross-sectional study involving the analysis of database information of 140 retired bauxite mining workers from Poços de Caldas-MG evaluated at Worker’s Health Reference Center and at the Social Security Brazilian National Institute, from July 1st, 2015 until June 30th, 2016. The workers were divided into three groups: non-smokers (n = 47), ex-smokers (n = 46), and smokers (n = 47). The data included: age, gender, spirometry results, and the presence or not of pulmonary pleural and/or parenchymal changes in chest radiographs. Chi-Squared test was used (p < 0,05). Results: In the smokers’ group, 83% of spirometry tests and 64% of chest x-rays were altered. In the non-smokers’ group, 19% of spirometry tests and 13% of chest x-rays were altered. In the ex-smokers’ group, 35% of spirometry tests and 30% of chest x-rays were altered. Most of the results were statistically significant. Results demonstrated a significant difference between smokers’ and non-smokers’ groups in regard to spirometric and radiographic pulmonary alterations. Ex-smokers’ and non-smokers’ group demonstrated better results when compared to the smokers’ group in relation to altered spirometry and radiograph findings. These data may contribute to planning strategies to enhance smoking cessation programs within the bauxite mining industry.

Keywords: Bauxite mining, spirometry, chest radiography, smoking.

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355 Corrosion Analysis and Interfacial Characterization of Al – Steel Metal Inert Gas Weld - Braze Dissimilar Joints by Micro Area X-Ray Diffraction Technique

Authors: S. S. Sravanthi, Swati Ghosh Acharyya

Abstract:

Automotive light weighting is of major prominence in the current times due to its contribution in improved fuel economy and reduced environmental pollution. Various arc welding technologies are being employed in the production of automobile components with reduced weight. The present study is of practical importance since it involves preferential substitution of Zinc coated mild steel with a light weight alloy such as 6061 Aluminium by means of Gas Metal Arc Welding (GMAW) – Brazing technique at different processing parameters. However, the fabricated joints have shown the generation of Al – Fe layer at the interfacial regions which was confirmed by the Scanning Electron Microscope and Energy Dispersion Spectroscopy. These Al-Fe compounds not only affect the mechanical strength, but also predominantly deteriorate the corrosion resistance of the joints. Hence, it is essential to understand the phases formed in this layer and their crystal structure. Micro area X - ray diffraction technique has been exclusively used for this study. Moreover, the crevice corrosion analysis at the joint interfaces was done by exposing the joints to 5 wt.% FeCl3 solution at regular time intervals as per ASTM G 48-03. The joints have shown a decreased crevice corrosion resistance with increased heat intensity. Inner surfaces of welds have shown severe oxide cracking and a remarkable weight loss when exposed to concentrated FeCl3. The weight loss was enhanced with decreased filler wire feed rate and increased heat intensity. 

Keywords: Automobiles, welding, corrosion, lap joints, Micro XRD.

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354 Investigating the Formation of Nano-Hydroxyapatite on a Biocompatible and Antibacterial Cu/Mg-Substituted Bioglass

Authors: Elhamalsadat Ghaffari, Moghan Amirhosseinian, Amir Khaleghipour

Abstract:

Multifunctional bioactive glasses (BGs) are designed with a focus on the provision of bactericidal and biological properties desired for angiogenesis, osteogenesis, and ultimately potential applications in bone tissue engineering. To achieve these, six sol-gel copper/magnesium substituted derivatives of 58S-BG, i.e. a mol% series of 60SiO2-4P2O5-5CuO-(31-x) CaO/xMgO (where x=0, 1, 3, 5, 8, and 10), were synthesized. Afterwards, the effect of MgO/CaO substitution on the in vitro formation of nano-hydroxyapatite (HA), osteoblast-like cell responses and BGs antibacterial performance were studied. During the BGs synthesis, the elimination of nitrates was achieved at 700 °C that prevented the BGs crystallization and stabilized the obtained dried gels. The structural and morphological evaluations were performed with X-ray diffraction (XRD), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). These characterizations revealed that Cu-substituted 58S-BG consisting of 5 mol% MgO (BG-5/5) slightly had retarded the formation of HA. In addition, Cu-substituted 58S-BGs consisting 8 mol% and 10 mol% MgO (BG-5/8 and BG-5/10) displayed lower bioactivity probably due to the lower ion release rate of Ca–Si into the simulated body fluid (SBF). The determination of 3-(4, 5 dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2, 5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) and alkaline phosphate (ALP) activities proved that the highest values of both differentiation and proliferation of MC3T3-E1 cells can be obtained from a 5 mol% MgO substituted BG, while the over addition of MgO (8 mol% and 10 mol%) decreased the bioactivity. Furthermore, these novel Cu/Mg-substituted 58S-BGs displayed antibacterial effect against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus bacteria. Taken together, the results suggest the equally-substituted BG-5/5 (i.e. the one consists of 5 mol% of both CuO and MgO) as a promising candidate for bone tissue engineering, among all newly designed BGs in this work, owing to its desirable cell proliferation, ALP activity and antibacterial properties.

Keywords: Apatite, bioactivity, biomedical applications sol-gel processes.

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353 Comparative Study of Calcium Content on in vitro Biological and Antibacterial Properties of Silicon-Based Bioglass

Authors: Morteza Elsa, Amirhossein Moghanian

Abstract:

The major aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of CaO content on in vitro hydroxyapatite formation, MC3T3 cells cytotoxicity and proliferation as well as antibacterial efficiency of sol-gel derived SiO2–CaO–P2O5 ternary system. For this purpose, first two grades of bioactive glass (BG); BG-58s (mol%: 60%SiO2–36%CaO–4%P2O5) and BG-68s (mol%: 70%SiO2–26%CaO–4%P2O5)) were synthesized by sol-gel method. Second, the effect of CaO content in their composition on in vitro bioactivity was investigated by soaking the BG-58s and BG-68s powders in simulated body fluid (SBF) for time periods up to 14 days and followed by characterization inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectrometry (ICP-AES), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), X-ray diffraction (XRD), and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) techniques. Additionally, live/dead staining, 3-(4,5dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT), and alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity assays were conducted respectively, as qualitatively and quantitatively assess for cell viability, proliferation and differentiations of MC3T3 cells in presence of 58s and 68s BGs. Results showed that BG-58s with higher CaO content showed higher in vitro bioactivity with respect to BG-68s. Moreover, the dissolution rate was inversely proportional to oxygen density of the BG. Live/dead assay revealed that both 58s and 68s increased the mean number live cells which were in good accordance with MTT assay. Furthermore, BG-58s showed more potential antibacterial activity against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) bacteria. Taken together, BG-58s with enhanced MC3T3 cells proliferation and ALP activity, acceptable bioactivity and significant high antibacterial effect against MRSA bacteria is suggested as a suitable candidate in order to further functionalizing for delivery of therapeutic ions and growth factors in bone tissue engineering.

Keywords: Antibacterial, bioactive glass, hydroxyapatite, proliferation, sol-gel processes.

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352 Synthesis and in vitro Characterization of a Gel-Derived SiO2-CaO-P2O5-SrO-Li2O Bioactive Glass

Authors: Mehrnaz Aminitabar, Moghan Amirhosseinian, Morteza Elsa

Abstract:

Bioactive glasses (BGs) are a group of surface-reactive biomaterials used in clinical applications as implants or filler materials in the human body to repair and replace diseased or damaged bone. Sol-gel technique was employed to prepare a SiO2-CaO-P2O5 glass with nominal composition of 58S BG with the addition of Sr and Li modifiers which imparts special properties to the BG. The effect of simultaneous addition of Sr and Li on bioactivity and biocompatibility, proliferation, alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity of osteoblast cell line MC3T3-E1 and antibacterial property against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) bacteria were examined. BGs were characterized by X-ray diffraction, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, scanning electron microscopy before and after soaking the samples in the simulated body fluid (SBF) for different time intervals to characterize the formation of hydroxyapatite (HA) formed on the surface of BGs. Structural characterization indicated that the simultaneous presence of 5% Sr and 5% Li in 58S-BG composition not only did not retard HA formation because of opposite effect of Sr and Li of the dissolution of BG in the SBF but also, stimulated the differentiation and proliferation of MC3T3-E1s. Moreover, the presence of Sr and Li on dissolution of the ions resulted in an increase in the mean number of DAPI-labeled nuclei which was in good agreement with live/dead assay. The result of antibacterial tests revealed that Sr and Li-substituted 58S BG exhibited a potential antibacterial effect against MRSA bacteria. Because of optimal proliferation and ALP activity of MC3T3-E1cells, proper bioactivity and high antibacterial potential against MRSA, BG-5/5 is suggested as a multifunctional candidate for bone tissue engineering.

Keywords: Antibacterial activity, bioactive glass, sol-gel, strontium.

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351 Fabrication and Characterization of Al2O3 Based Electrical Insulation Coatings Around SiC Fibers

Authors: S. Palaniyappan, P. K. Chennam, M. Trautmann, H. Ahmad, T. Mehner, T. Lampke, G. Wagner

Abstract:

In structural-health monitoring of fiber reinforced plastics (FRPs), every single inorganic fiber sensor that are integrated into the bulk material requires an electrical insulation around itself, when the surrounding reinforcing fibers are electrically conductive. This results in a more accurate data acquisition only from the sensor fiber without any electrical interventions. For this purpose, thin nano-films of aluminium oxide (Al2O3)-based electrical-insulation coatings have been fabricated around the Silicon Carbide (SiC) single fiber sensors through reactive DC magnetron sputtering technique. The sputtered coatings were amorphous in nature and the thickness of the coatings increased with an increase in the sputter time. Microstructural characterization of the coated fibers performed using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) confirmed a homogeneous circumferential coating with no detectable defects or cracks on the surface. X-ray diffraction (XRD) analyses of the as-sputtered and 2 hours annealed coatings (825 & 1125 ˚C) revealed the amorphous and crystalline phases of Al2O3 respectively. Raman spectroscopic analyses produced no characteristic bands of Al2O3, as the thickness of the films was in the nanometer (nm) range, which is too small to overcome the actual penetration depth of the laser used. In addition, the influence of the insulation coatings on the mechanical properties of the SiC sensor fibers has been analyzed.

Keywords: Al2O3 insulation coating, reactive sputtering, SiC single fiber sensor, single fiber tensile test.

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350 Effect of Zinc Oxide on Characteristics of Active Flux TIG Welds of 1050 Aluminum Plates

Authors: H. Fazlinejad, A. Halvaee

Abstract:

In this study, characteristics of ATIG welds using ZnO flux on aluminum was investigated and compared with TIG welds. Autogenously AC-ATIG bead on plate welding was applied on Al1050 plate with a coating of ZnO as the flux. Different levels of welding current and flux layer thickness was considered to study the effect of heat input and flux quantity on ATIG welds and was compared with those of TIG welds. Geometrical investigation of the weld cross sections revealed that penetration depth of the ATIG welds with ZnO flux, was increased up to 2 times in some samples compared to the TIG welds. Optical metallographic and Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) observations revealed similar microstructures in TIG and ATIG welds. Composition of the ATIG welds slag was also analyzed using X-ray diffraction. In both TIG and ATIG samples, the lowest values of microhardness were observed in the HAZ.

Keywords: ATIG, active flux, weld penetration, Al 1050, ZnO.

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349 Analysis of Image Segmentation Techniques for Diagnosis of Dental Caries in X-ray Images

Authors: V. Geetha, K. S. Aprameya

Abstract:

Early diagnosis of dental caries is essential for maintaining dental health. In this paper, method for diagnosis of dental caries is proposed using Laplacian filter, adaptive thresholding, texture analysis and Support Vector Machine (SVM) classifier. Analysis of the proposed method is compared with Otsu thresholding, watershed segmentation and active contouring method. Adaptive thresholding has comparatively better performance with 96.9% accuracy and 96.1% precision. The results are validated using statistical method, two-way ANOVA, at significant level of 5%, that shows the interaction of proposed method on performance parameter measures are significant. Hence the proposed technique could be used for detection of dental caries in automated computer assisted diagnosis system.

Keywords: Computer assisted diagnosis, dental caries, dental radiography, image segmentation.

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348 A Comparative Study of Single- and Multi-Walled Carbon Nanotube Incorporation to Indium Tin Oxide Electrodes for Solar Cells

Authors: G. Gokceli, O. Eksik, E. Ozkan Zayim, N. Karatepe

Abstract:

Alternative electrode materials for optoelectronic devices have been widely investigated in recent years. Since indium tin oxide (ITO) is the most preferred transparent conductive electrode, producing ITO films by simple and cost-effective solution-based techniques with enhanced optical and electrical properties has great importance. In this study, single- and multi-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNT and MWCNT) incorporated into the ITO structure to increase electrical conductivity, mechanical strength, and chemical stability. Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) were firstly functionalized by acid treatment (HNO3:H2SO4), and the thermal resistance of CNTs after functionalization was determined by thermogravimetric analysis (TGA). Thin films were then prepared by spin coating technique and characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), X-ray diffraction (XRD), four-point probe measurement system and UV-Vis spectrophotometer. The effects of process parameters were compared for ITO, MWCNT-ITO, and SWCNT-ITO films. Two factors including CNT concentration and annealing temperature were considered. The UV-Vis measurements demonstrated that the transmittance of ITO films was 83.58% at 550 nm, which was decreased depending on the concentration of CNT dopant. On the other hand, both CNT dopants provided an enhancement in the crystalline structure and electrical conductivity. Due to compatible diameter and better dispersibility of SWCNTs in the ITO solution, the best result in terms of electrical conductivity was obtained by SWCNT-ITO films with the 0.1 g/L SWCNT dopant concentration and heat-treatment at 550 °C for 1 hour.

Keywords: CNT incorporation, ITO electrode, spin coating, thin film.

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347 Characterization of Electrospun Carbon Nanofiber Doped Polymer Composites

Authors: Atilla Evcin, Bahri Ersoy, Süleyman Akpınar, I. Sinan Atlı

Abstract:

Ceramic, polymer and composite nanofibers are nowadays begun to be utilized in many fields of nanotechnology. By the means of dimensions, these fibers are as small as nano scale but because of having large surface area and microstructural characteristics, they provide unique mechanic, optical, magnetic, electronic and chemical properties. In terms of nanofiber production, electrospinning has been the most widely used technique in recent years. In this study, carbon nanofibers have been synthesized from solutions of Polyacrylonitrile (PAN)/ N,N-dimethylformamide (DMF) by electrospinning method. The carbon nanofibers have been stabilized by oxidation at 250 °C for 2 h in air and carbonized at 750 °C for 1 h in H2/N2. Images of carbon nanofibers have been taken with scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The images have been analyzed to study the fiber morphology and to determine the distribution of the fiber diameter using FibraQuant 1.3 software. Then polymer composites have been produced from mixture of carbon nanofibers and silicone polymer. The final polymer composites have been characterized by X-ray diffraction method and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) energy dispersive X-ray (EDX) measurements. These results have been reported and discussed. At result, homogeneous carbon nanofibers with 100-167 nm of diameter were obtained with optimized electrospinning conditions.

Keywords: Electrospinning, characterization, composites, nanofiber.

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346 Influence of Sr(BO2)2 Doping on Superconducting Properties of (Bi,Pb)-2223 Phase

Authors: N. G. Margiani, I. G. Kvartskhava, G. A. Mumladze, Z. A. Adamia

Abstract:

Chemical doping with different elements and compounds at various amounts represents the most suitable approach to improve the superconducting properties of bismuth-based superconductors for technological applications. In this paper, the influence of partial substitution of Sr(BO2)2 for SrO on the phase formation kinetics and transport properties of (Bi,Pb)-2223 HTS has been studied for the first time. Samples with nominal composition Bi1.7Pb0.3Sr2-xCa2Cu3Oy[Sr(BO2)2]x, x=0, 0.0375, 0.075, 0.15, 0.25, were prepared by the standard solid state processing. The appropriate mixtures were calcined at 845 oC for 40 h. The resulting materials were pressed into pellets and annealed at 837 oC for 30 h in air. Superconducting properties of undoped (reference) and Sr(BO2)2-doped (Bi,Pb)-2223 compounds were investigated through X-ray diffraction (XRD), resistivity (ρ) and transport critical current density (Jc) measurements. The surface morphology changes in the prepared samples were examined by scanning electron microscope (SEM). XRD and Jc studies have shown that the low level Sr(BO2)2 doping (x=0.0375-0.075) to the Sr-site promotes the formation of high-Tc phase and leads to the enhancement of current carrying capacity in (Bi,Pb)-2223 HTS. The doped sample with x=0.0375 has the best performance compared to other prepared samples. The estimated volume fraction of (Bi,Pb)-2223 phase increases from ~25 % for reference specimen to ~70 % for x=0.0375. Moreover, strong increase in the self-field Jc value was observed for this dopant amount (Jc=340 A/cm2), compared to an undoped sample (Jc=110 A/cm2). Pronounced enhancement of superconducting properties of (Bi,Pb)-2223 superconductor can be attributed to the acceleration of high-Tc phase formation as well as the improvement of inter-grain connectivity by small amounts of Sr(BO2)2 dopant.

Keywords: Bismuth-based superconductor, critical current density, phase formation, Sr(BO2)2 doping.

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345 Characterization of Aluminium Alloy 6063 Hybrid Metal Matrix Composite by Using Stir Casting Method

Authors: Balwinder Singh

Abstract:

The present research is a paper on the characterization of aluminum alloy-6063 hybrid metal matrix composites using three different reinforcement materials (SiC, red mud, and fly ash) through stir casting method. The red mud was used in solid form, and particle size range varies between 103-150 µm. During this investigation, fly ash is received from Guru Nanak Dev Thermal Plant (GNDTP), Bathinda. The study has been done by using Taguchi’s L9 orthogonal array by taking fraction wt.% (SiC 5%, 7.5%, and 10% and Red Mud and Fly Ash 2%, 4%, and 6%) as input parameters with their respective levels. The study of the mechanical properties (tensile strength, impact strength, and microhardness) has been done by using Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) with the help of MINITAB 17 software. It is revealed that silicon carbide is the most significant parameter followed by red mud and fly ash affecting the mechanical properties, respectively. The fractured surface morphology of the composites using Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscope (FESEM) shows that there is a good mixing of reinforcement particles in the matrix. Energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS) was performed to know the presence of the phases of the reinforced material.

Keywords: Reinforcement, silicon carbide, fly ash, red mud.

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344 Development of a Biomaterial from Naturally Occurring Chloroapatite Mineral for Biomedical Applications

Authors: H. K. G. K. D. K. Hapuhinna, R. D. Gunaratne, H. M. J. C. Pitawala

Abstract:

Hydroxyapatite is a bioceramic which can be used for applications in orthopedics and dentistry due to its structural similarity with the mineral phase of mammalian bones and teeth. In this study, it was synthesized, chemically changing natural Eppawala chloroapatite mineral as a value-added product. Sol-gel approach and solid state sintering were used to synthesize products using diluted nitric acid, ethanol and calcium hydroxide under different conditions. Synthesized Eppawala hydroxyapatite powder was characterized using X-ray Fluorescence (XRF), X-ray Powder Diffraction (XRD), Fourier-transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR), Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), Thermogravimetric Analysis (TGA) and Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC) in order to find out its composition, crystallinity, presence of functional groups, bonding type, surface morphology, microstructural features, and thermal dependence and stability, respectively. The XRD results reflected the formation of a hexagonal crystal structure of hydroxyapatite. Elementary composition and microstructural features of products were discussed based on the XRF and SEM results of the synthesized hydroxyapatite powder. TGA and DSC results of synthesized products showed high thermal stability and good material stability in nature. Also, FTIR spectroscopy results confirmed the formation of hydroxyapatite from apatite via the presence of hydroxyl groups. Those results coincided with the FTIR results of mammalian bones including human bones. The study concludes that there is a possibility of producing hydroxyapatite using commercially available Eppawala chloroapatite in Sri Lanka.

Keywords: Dentistry, eppawala chloroapatite, hydroxyapatite, orthopedics.

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343 Investigation of Microstructure of Differently Sub-Zero Treated Vanadis 6 Steel

Authors: J. Ptačinová, J. Ďurica, P. Jurči, M Kusý

Abstract:

Ledeburitic tool steel Vanadis 6 has been subjected to sub-zero treatment (SZT) at -140 °C and -196 °C, for different durations up to 48 h. The microstructure and hardness have been examined with reference to the same material after room temperature quenching, by using the light microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction, and Vickers hardness testing method. The microstructure of the material consists of the martensitic matrix with certain amount of retained austenite, and of several types of carbides – eutectic carbides, secondary carbides, and small globular carbides. SZT reduces the retained austenite amount – this is more effective at -196 °C than at -140 °C. Alternatively, the amount of small globular carbides increases more rapidly after SZT at -140 °C than after the treatment at -140 °C. The hardness of sub-zero treated material is higher than that of conventionally treated steel when tempered at low temperature. Compressive hydrostatic stresses are developed in the retained austenite due to the application of SZT, as a result of more complete martensitic transformation. This is also why the population density of small globular carbides is substantially increased due to the SZT. In contrast, the hardness of sub-zero treated samples decreases more rapidly compared to that of conventionally treated steel, and in addition, sub-zero treated material induces a loss the secondary hardening peak.

Keywords: Microstructure, Vanadis 6 tool steel, sub-zero treatment, carbides.

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342 X-Ray Fluorescence Molecular Imaging with Improved Sensitivity for Biomedical Applications

Authors: Guohua Cao, Xu Dong

Abstract:

X-ray Fluorescence Molecular Imaging (XFMI) holds great promise as a low-cost molecular imaging modality for biomedical applications with high chemical sensitivity. However, for in vivo biomedical applications, a key technical bottleneck is the relatively low chemical sensitivity of XFMI, especially at a reasonably low radiation dose. In laboratory x-ray source based XFMI, one of the main factors that limits the chemical sensitivity of XFMI is the scattered x-rays. We will present our latest findings on improving the chemical sensitivity of XFMI using excitation beam spectrum optimization. XFMI imaging experiments on two mouse-sized phantoms were conducted at three different excitation beam spectra. Our results show that the minimum detectable concentration (MDC) of iodine can be readily increased by five times via excitation spectrum optimization. Findings from this investigation could find use for in vivo pre-clinical small-animal XFMI in the future.

Keywords: Molecular imaging, X-ray fluorescence, chemical sensitivity, X-ray scattering.

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341 Synthesis and Characterization of Nickel and Sulphur Sensitized Zinc Oxide Structures

Authors: Ella C. Linganiso, Bonex W. Mwakikunga, Trilock Singh, Sanjay Mathur, Odireleng M. Ntwaeaborwa

Abstract:

The use of nanostructured semiconducting material to catalyze degradation of environmental pollutants still receives much attention to date. One of the desired characteristics for pollutant degradation under ultra-violet visible light is the materials with extended carrier charge separation that allows for electronic transfer between the catalyst and the pollutants. In this work, zinc oxide n-type semiconductor vertically aligned structures were fabricated on silicon (100) substrates using the chemical bath deposition method. The as-synthesized structures were treated with nickel and sulphur. X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy were used to characterize the phase purity, structural dimensions and elemental composition of the obtained structures respectively. Photoluminescence emission measurements showed a decrease in both the near band edge emission as well as the defect band emission upon addition of nickel and sulphur with different concentrations. This was attributed to increased charger-carrier-separation due to the presence of Ni-S material on ZnO surface, which is linked to improved charge transfer during photocatalytic reactions.

Keywords: Carrier-charge-separation, nickel, sulphur, zinc oxide, photoluminescence.

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340 Associations between Metabolic Syndrome and Bone Mineral Density and Trabecular Bone Score in Postmenopausal Women with Non-Vertebral Fractures

Authors: Vladyslav Povoroznyuk, Larysa Martynyuk, Iryna Syzonenko, Liliya Martynyuk

Abstract:

Medical, social, and economic relevance of osteoporosis is caused by reducing quality of life, increasing disability and mortality of the patients as a result of fractures due to the low-energy trauma. This study is aimed to examine the associations of metabolic syndrome components, bone mineral density (BMD) and trabecular bone score (TBS) in menopausal women with non-vertebral fractures. 1161 menopausal women aged 50-79 year-old were examined and divided into three groups: A included 419 women with increased body weight (BMI - 25.0-29.9 kg/m2), B – 442 females with obesity (BMI >29.9 kg/m2)i and C – 300 women with metabolic syndrome (diagnosis according to IDF criteria, 2005). BMD of lumbar spine (L1-L4), femoral neck, total body and forearm was investigated with usage of dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry. The bone quality indexes were measured according to Med-Imaps installation. All analyses were performed using Statistical Package 6.0. BMD of lumbar spine (L1-L4), femoral neck, total body, and ultradistal radius was significant higher in women with obesity and metabolic syndrome compared to the pre-obese ones (p<0.001). TBS was significantly higher in women with increased body weight compared to obese and metabolic syndrome patients. Analysis showed significant positive correlation between waist circumference, triglycerides level and BMD of lumbar spine and femur. Significant negative association between serum HDL level and BMD of investigated sites was established. The TBS (L1-L4) indexes positively correlated with HDL (high-density lipoprotein) level. Despite the fact that BMD indexes were better in women with metabolic syndrome, the frequency of non-vertebral fractures was significantly higher in this group of patients.

Keywords: Bone mineral density, trabecular bone score, metabolic syndrome, fracture.

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339 Mechanical, Thermal and Biodegradable Properties of Bioplast-Spruce Green Wood Polymer Composites

Authors: A. Atli, K. Candelier, J. Alteyrac

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Environmental and sustainability concerns push the industries to manufacture alternative materials having less environmental impact. The Wood Plastic Composites (WPCs) produced by blending the biopolymers and natural fillers permit not only to tailor the desired properties of materials but also are the solution to meet the environmental and sustainability requirements. This work presents the elaboration and characterization of the fully green WPCs prepared by blending a biopolymer, BIOPLAST® GS 2189 and spruce sawdust used as filler with different amounts. Since both components are bio-based, the resulting material is entirely environmentally friendly. The mechanical, thermal, structural properties of these WPCs were characterized by different analytical methods like tensile, flexural and impact tests, Thermogravimetric Analysis (TGA), Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC) and X-ray Diffraction (XRD). Their water absorption properties and resistance to the termite and fungal attacks were determined in relation with different wood filler content. The tensile and flexural moduli of WPCs increased with increasing amount of wood fillers into the biopolymer, but WPCs became more brittle compared to the neat polymer. Incorporation of spruce sawdust modified the thermal properties of polymer: The degradation, cold crystallization, and melting temperatures shifted to higher temperatures when spruce sawdust was added into polymer. The termite, fungal and water absorption resistance of WPCs decreased with increasing wood amount in WPCs, but remained in durability class 1 (durable) concerning fungal resistance and quoted 1 (attempted attack) in visual rating regarding to the termites resistance except that the WPC with the highest wood content (30 wt%) rated 2 (slight attack) indicating a long term durability. All the results showed the possibility to elaborate the easy injectable composite materials with adjustable properties by incorporation of BIOPLAST® GS 2189 and spruce sawdust. Therefore, lightweight WPCs allow both to recycle wood industry byproducts and to produce a full ecologic material.

Keywords: Biodegradability, durability, mechanical properties, melt flow index, spectrophotometry, structural properties, thermal properties, wood-plastic composites.

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338 The Role of Initiator in the Synthesis of Poly(Methyl Methacrylate)-Layered Silicate Nanocomposites through Bulk Polymerization

Authors: Tsung-Yen Tsai, Naveen Bunekar, Ming Hsuan Chang, Wen-Kuang Wang, Satoshi Onda

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The structure-property relationship and initiator effect on bulk polymerized poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA)–oragnomodified layered silicate nanocomposites was investigated. In this study, we used 2, 2'-azobis (4-methoxy-2,4-dimethyl valeronitrile and benzoyl peroxide initiators for bulk polymerization. The bulk polymerized nanocomposites’ morphology was investigated by X-ray diffraction and transmission electron microscopy. The type of initiator strongly influences the physiochemical properties of the polymer nanocomposite. The thermal degradation of PMMA in the presence of nanofiller was studied. 5 wt% weight loss temperature (T5d) increased as compared to pure PMMA. The peak degradation temperature increased for the nanocomposites. Differential scanning calorimetry and dynamic mechanical analysis were performed to investigate the glass transition temperature and the nature of the constrained region as the reinforcement mechanism respectively. Furthermore, the optical properties such as UV-Vis and Total Luminous Transmission of nanocomposites are examined.

Keywords: Initiator, bulk polymerization, layered silicates, methyl methacrylate.

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337 Texture Observation of Bending by XRD and EBSD Method

Authors: Takashi Sakai, Yuri Shimomura

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The crystal orientation is a factor that affects the microscopic material properties. Crystal orientation determines the anisotropy of the polycrystalline material. And it is closely related to the mechanical properties of the material. In this paper, for pure copper polycrystalline material, two different methods; X-Ray Diffraction (XRD) and Electron Backscatter Diffraction (EBSD); and the crystal orientation were analyzed. In the latter method, it is possible that the X-ray beam diameter is thicker as compared to the former, to measure the crystal orientation macroscopically relatively. By measurement of the above, we investigated the change in crystal orientation and internal tissues of pure copper.

Keywords: Bending, electron backscatter diffraction, X-ray diffraction, microstructure, IPF map, orientation distribution function.

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336 Design and Modeling of Human Middle Ear for Harmonic Response Analysis

Authors: Shende Suraj Balu, A. B. Deoghare, K. M. Pandey

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The human middle ear (ME) is a delicate and vital organ. It has a complex structure that performs various functions such as receiving sound pressure and producing vibrations of eardrum and propagating it to inner ear. It consists of Tympanic Membrane (TM), three auditory ossicles, various ligament structures and muscles. Incidents such as traumata, infections, ossification of ossicular structures and other pathologies may damage the ME organs. The conditions can be surgically treated by employing prosthesis. However, the suitability of the prosthesis needs to be examined in advance prior to the surgery. Few decades ago, this issue was addressed and analyzed by developing an equivalent representation either in the form of spring mass system, electrical system using R-L-C circuit or developing an approximated CAD model. But, nowadays a three-dimensional ME model can be constructed using micro X-Ray Computed Tomography (μCT) scan data. Moreover, the concern about patient specific integrity pertaining to the disease can be examined well in advance. The current research work emphasizes to develop the ME model from the stacks of μCT images which are used as input file to MIMICS Research 19.0 (Materialise Interactive Medical Image Control System) software. A stack of CT images is converted into geometrical surface model to build accurate morphology of ME. The work is further extended to understand the dynamic behaviour of Harmonic response of the stapes footplate and umbo for different sound pressure levels applied at lateral side of eardrum using finite element approach. The pathological condition Cholesteatoma of ME is investigated to obtain peak to peak displacement of stapes footplate and umbo. Apart from this condition, other pathologies, mainly, changes in the stiffness of stapedial ligament, TM thickness and ossicular chain separation and fixation are also explored. The developed model of ME for pathologies is validated by comparing the results available in the literatures and also with the results of a normal ME to calculate the percentage loss in hearing capability.

Keywords: Computed tomography, human middle ear, harmonic response, pathologies, tympanic membrane.

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335 ZnS and Graphene Quantum Dots Nanocomposite as Potential Electron Acceptor for Photovoltaics

Authors: S. M. Giripunje, Shikha Jindal

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Zinc sulphide (ZnS) quantum dots (QDs) were synthesized successfully via simple sonochemical method. X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and high resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM) analysis revealed the average size of QDs of the order of 3.7 nm. The band gap of the QDs was tuned to 5.2 eV by optimizing the synthesis parameters. UV-Vis absorption spectra of ZnS QD confirm the quantum confinement effect. Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) analysis confirmed the formation of single phase ZnS QDs. To fabricate the diode, blend of ZnS QDs and P3HT was prepared and the heterojunction of PEDOT:PSS and the blend was formed by spin coating on indium tin oxide (ITO) coated glass substrate. The diode behaviour of the heterojunction was analysed, wherein the ideality factor was found to be 2.53 with turn on voltage 0.75 V and the barrier height was found to be 1.429 eV. ZnS-Graphene QDs nanocomposite was characterised for the surface morphological study. It was found that the synthesized ZnS QDs appear as quasi spherical particles on the graphene sheets. The average particle size of ZnS-graphene nanocomposite QDs was found to be 8.4 nm. From voltage-current characteristics of ZnS-graphene nanocomposites, it is observed that the conductivity of the composite increases by 104 times the conductivity of ZnS QDs. Thus the addition of graphene QDs in ZnS QDs enhances the mobility of the charge carriers in the composite material. Thus, the graphene QDs, with high specific area for a large interface, high mobility and tunable band gap, show a great potential as an electron-acceptors in photovoltaic devices.

Keywords: Graphene, mobility, nanocomposites, photovoltaics, quantum dots, zinc sulphide.

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334 Corrosion Behaviour of Hypereutectic Al-Si Automotive Alloy in Different pH Environment

Authors: M. Al Nur, M. S. Kaiser

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Corrosion behaviour of hypereutectic Al-19Si automotive alloy in different pH=1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, and 13 environments was carried out using conventional gravimetric measurements and was complemented by resistivity, optical micrograph, scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and X-ray analyzer (EDX) investigations. Gravimetric analysis confirmed that the highest corrosion rate is shown at pH 13 followed by pH 1. Minimum corrosion occurs in the pH range of 3.0 to 11 due to establishment of passive layer on the surface. The highest corrosion rate at pH 13 is due to the presence of sodium hydroxide in the solution which dissolves the surface oxide film at a steady rate. At pH 1, it can be attributed that the presence of aggressive chloride ions serves to pick up the damage of the passive films at localized regions. With varying exposure periods by both, the environment complies with the normal corrosion rate profile that is an initial steep rise followed by a nearly constant value of corrosion rate. Resistivity increases in case of pH 1 solution for the higher pit formation and decreases at pH 13 due to formation of thin film. The SEM image of corroded samples immersed in pH 1 solution clearly shows pores on the surface and in pH 13 solution, and the corrosion layer seems more compact and homogenous and not porous.

Keywords: Al-Si alloy, corrosion, pH, resistivity, SEM.

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333 Reduction of Content of Lead and Zinc from Wastewater by Using of Metallurgical Waste

Authors: L. Rozumová, J. Seidlerová

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The aim of this paper was to study the sorption properties of a blast furnace sludge used as the sorbent. The sorbent was utilized for reduction of content of lead and zinc ions. Sorbent utilized in this work was obtained from metallurgical industry from process of wet gas treatment in iron production. The blast furnace sludge was characterized by X-Ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, and XRFS spectroscopy. Sorption experiments were conducted in batch mode. The sorption of metal ions in the sludge was determined by correlation of adsorption isotherm models. The adsorption of lead and zinc ions was best fitted with Langmuir adsorption isotherms. The adsorption capacity of lead and zinc ions was 53.8 mg.g-1 and 10.7 mg.g-1, respectively. The results indicated that blast furnace sludge could be effectively used as secondary material and could be also employed as a low-cost alternative for the removal of heavy metals ions from wastewater.

Keywords: Blast furnace sludge, lead, zinc, sorption.

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332 Treatment of Low-Grade Iron Ore Using Two Stage Wet High-Intensity Magnetic Separation Technique

Authors: Moses C. Siame, Kazutoshi Haga, Atsushi Shibayama

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This study investigates the removal of silica, alumina and phosphorus as impurities from Sanje iron ore using wet high-intensity magnetic separation (WHIMS). Sanje iron ore contains low-grade hematite ore found in Nampundwe area of Zambia from which iron is to be used as the feed in the steelmaking process. The chemical composition analysis using X-ray Florence spectrometer showed that Sanje low-grade ore contains 48.90 mass% of hematite (Fe2O3) with 34.18 mass% as an iron grade. The ore also contains silica (SiO2) and alumina (Al2O3) of 31.10 mass% and 7.65 mass% respectively. The mineralogical analysis using X-ray diffraction spectrometer showed hematite and silica as the major mineral components of the ore while magnetite and alumina exist as minor mineral components. Mineral particle distribution analysis was done using scanning electron microscope with an X-ray energy dispersion spectrometry (SEM-EDS) and images showed that the average mineral size distribution of alumina-silicate gangue particles is in order of 100 μm and exists as iron-bearing interlocked particles. Magnetic separation was done using series L model 4 Magnetic Separator. The effect of various magnetic separation parameters such as magnetic flux density, particle size, and pulp density of the feed was studied during magnetic separation experiments. The ore with average particle size of 25 µm and pulp density of 2.5% was concentrated using pulp flow of 7 L/min. The results showed that 10 T was optimal magnetic flux density which enhanced the recovery of 93.08% of iron with 53.22 mass% grade. The gangue mineral particles containing 12 mass% silica and 3.94 mass% alumna remained in the concentrate, therefore the concentrate was further treated in the second stage WHIMS using the same parameters from the first stage. The second stage process recovered 83.41% of iron with 67.07 mass% grade. Silica was reduced to 2.14 mass% and alumina to 1.30 mass%. Accordingly, phosphorus was also reduced to 0.02 mass%. Therefore, the two stage magnetic separation process was established using these results.

Keywords: Sanje iron ore, magnetic separation, silica, alumina, recovery.

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331 Mineralogical Characterization and Petrographic Classification of the Soil of Casablanca City

Authors: I. Fahi, T. Remmal, F. El Kamel, B. Ayoub

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The treatment of the geotechnical database of the region of Casablanca was difficult to achieve due to the heterogeneity of the nomenclature of the lithological formations composing its soil. It appears necessary to harmonize the nomenclature of the facies and to produce cartographic documents useful for construction projects and studies before any investment program. To achieve this, more than 600 surveys made by the Public Laboratory for Testing and Studies (LPEE) in the agglomeration of Casablanca, were studied. Moreover, some local observations were made in different places of the metropolis. Each survey was the subject of a sheet containing lithological succession, macro and microscopic description of petrographic facies with photographic illustration, as well as measurements of geomechanical tests. In addition, an X-ray diffraction analysis was made in order to characterize the surficial formations of the region.

Keywords: Casablanca, guidebook, petrography, soil.

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330 Microscopic Analysis of Interfacial Transition Zone of Cementitious Composites Prepared by Various Mixing Procedures

Authors: Josef Fládr, Jiří Němeček, Veronika Koudelková, Petr Bílý

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Mechanical parameters of cementitious composites differ quite significantly based on the composition of cement matrix. They are also influenced by mixing times and procedure. The research presented in this paper was aimed at identification of differences in microstructure of normal strength (NSC) and differently mixed high strength (HSC) cementitious composites. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) investigation together with energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX) phase analysis of NSC and HSC samples was conducted. Evaluation of interfacial transition zone (ITZ) between the aggregate and cement matrix was performed. Volume share, thickness, porosity and composition of ITZ were studied. In case of HSC, samples obtained by several different mixing procedures were compared in order to find the most suitable procedure. In case of NSC, ITZ was identified around 40-50% of aggregate grains and its thickness typically ranged between 10 and 40 µm. Higher porosity and lower share of clinker was observed in this area as a result of increased water-to-cement ratio (w/c) and the lack of fine particles improving the grading curve of the aggregate. Typical ITZ with lower content of Ca was observed only in one HSC sample, where it was developed around less than 15% of aggregate grains. The typical thickness of ITZ in this sample was similar to ITZ in NSC (between 5 and 40 µm). In the remaining four HSC samples, no ITZ was observed. In general, the share of ITZ in HSC samples was found to be significantly smaller than in NSC samples. As ITZ is the weakest part of the material, this result explains to large extent the improved mechanical properties of HSC compared to NSC. Based on the comparison of characteristics of ITZ in HSC samples prepared by different mixing procedures, the most suitable mixing procedure from the point of view of properties of ITZ was identified.

Keywords: Energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, high strength concrete, interfacial transition zone, mixing procedure, normal strength concrete, scanning electron microscopy.

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329 Uranium Adsorption Using a Composite Material Based on Platelet SBA-15 Supported Tin Salt Tungstomolybdophosphoric Acid

Authors: H. Aghayan, F. A. Hashemi, R. Yavari, S. Zolghadri

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In this work, a new composite adsorbent based on a mesoporous silica SBA-15 with platelet morphology and tin salt of tungstomolybdophosphoric (TWMP) acid was synthesized and applied for uranium adsorption from aqueous solution. The sample was characterized by X-ray diffraction, Fourier transfer infra-red, and N2 adsorption-desorption analysis, and then, effect of various parameters such as concentration of metal ions and contact time on adsorption behavior was examined. The experimental result showed that the adsorption process was explained by the Langmuir isotherm model very well, and predominant reaction mechanism is physisorption. Kinetic data of adsorption suggest that the adsorption process can be described by the pseudo second-order reaction rate model.

Keywords: Platelet SBA-15, tungstomolybdophosphoric acid, adsorption, uranium ion.

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328 Comparison of Physical and Chemical Properties of Micro-Silica and Locally Produced Metakaolin and Effect on the Properties of Concrete

Authors: S. U. Khan, T. Ayub, N. Shafiq

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The properties of locally produced metakaolin (MK) as cement replacing material and the comparison of reactivity with commercially available micro-silica have been investigated. Compressive strength, splitting tensile strength, and load-deflection behaviour under bending are the properties that have been studied. The amorphous phase of MK with micro-silica was compared through X-ray diffraction (XRD) pattern. Further, interfacial transition zone of concrete with micro-silica and MK was observed through Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscopy (FESEM). Three mixes of concrete were prepared. One of the mix is without cement replacement as control mix, and the remaining two mixes are 10% cement replacement with micro-silica and MK. It has been found that MK, due to its irregular structure and amorphous phase, has high reactivity with portlandite in concrete. The compressive strength at early age is higher with MK as compared to micro-silica. MK concrete showed higher splitting tensile strength and higher load carrying capacity as compared to control and micro-silica concrete at all ages respectively.

Keywords: Metakaolin, compressive strength, splitting tensile strength, load deflection, interfacial transition zone.

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