Graphene nanoplatelets (GNPs) were used as multifunctional nanofiller to enhance thermal and mechanical properties as well as electrical conductivity of two different biodegradable thermoplastics: poly lactide (PLA) and poly (butylene adipate-co-terephthalate) (PBAT). Morphological investigations showed different levels of GNP dispersion in the two matrices, and consequently physical properties of the two systems exhibited dissimilar behaviours with GNP incorporation. Crystallinity of PLA, determined from differential scanning calorimetry, was observed to increase markedly with addition of GNPs in contrast to the decrease in crystallinity of PBAT. Isothermal and non-isothermal thermogravimetric analyses also revealed a more significant delay in thermal decomposition of PLA upon addition of GNPs compared to that of PBAT. Furthermore, results showed that increasing GNP content of PLA and PBAT nanocomposites influenced their Young’s modulus and electrical conductivity in different ways. Modulus of PBAT increased continuously with increasing GNP loading while that of PLA reached a maximum at 9 wt% GNPs and then decreased. Moreover, despite the higher conductivity of pure PBAT compared to pure PLA, conductivity of PLA/GNP nanocomposites overtook that of PBAT/GNP nanocomposites above a certain GNP concentration. This demonstrated the determining effect of nanoplatelets dispersion state on the matrices properties.
The sandwich-like structure of reduced graphene oxide/polyaniline (RGO/PANI) hybrid electrode was prepared by electrochemical deposition. Both the voltage windows and electrolytes for electrochemical deposition of PANI and RGO were optimized. In the composites, PANI nanofibers were anchored on the surface of the RGO sheets, which avoids the re-stacking of neighboring sheets. The RGO/PANI composite electrode shows a high specific capacitance of 466 F/g at 2 mA/cm2 than that of previously reported RGO/PANI composites. Asymmetric flexible supercapacitors applying RGO/PANI as positive electrode and carbon fiber cloth as negative electrode can be cycled reversibly in the high-voltage region of 0-1.6 V and displays intriguing performance with a maximum specific capacitance of 35.5 mF cm-2. Also, it delivers a high energy density of 45.5 mW h cm-2 at power density of 1250 mW cm-2. Furthermore, the asymmetric device exhibits an excellent long cycle life with 97.6% initial capacitance retention after 5000 cycles. Such composite electrode has a great potential for applications in flexible electronics, roll-up display, and wearable devices.
Graphene oxide (GO) membranes play an important role in various nanofiltration applications including desalination, water purification, gas separation, and pervaporation. However, it is still very challenging to achieve both high separation efficiency and good water permeance at the same time. Here, we synthesized two kinds of GO-based composite membranes i.e. reduced GO (rGO)@MoO2 and rGO@WO3 by in-situ growth of metal nanoparticles on the surface of GO sheets. They show a high separation efficiency of ～100% for various organic dyes such as rhodamine B, methylene blue and evans blue, along with a water permeance over 125 L m-2 h-1 bar-1. The high water permeance and rejection efficiency open up the possibility for the real applications of our GO composite membranes in water purification and wastewater treatment. Furthermore, this composite strategy can be readily extended to the fabrication of other ultrathin molecular sieving membranes for a wide range of molecular separation applications.
Structural, electronic and mechanical properties of ZnO/Graphene (ZnO/G) nanolaminates fabricated by low temperature atomic layer deposition (ALD) and chemical vapor deposition (CVD) were investigated. We performed scanning and transmission electron microscopy (SEM/TEM), X-ray diffraction (XRD), electron energy loss spectroscopy (EELS), Raman spectroscopy, X-Ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and nanoindentation to characterize the ZnO/G nanolaminates. The main structural and mechanical parameters of ZnO/G nanolaminates were calculated. The obtained results were analyzed and interpreted taking into account mechanical interaction and charge effects occurring at the G-ZnO interface. The influence of graphene sublayers number on the mechanical behavior of the ZnO/G nanolaminates was studied. By reducing the bilayer thickness, the mechanical parameters of the films can be tuned (Young’s modulus 100-200 GPa, hardness 3-9 GPa). The softer response of the multilayers as compared to the single layers of ZnO and graphene was attributed to the structural changes in the ZnO layer and the interfaces. This study shows the mechanical behavior of ZnO/G nanolaminates and their influence on the development of novel electro-optical devices based on these structures.
A new method to directly grow graphene on quartz glass substrate by atmospheric-pressure chemical vapor deposition (CVD) without using any catalyst was developed. The prime feature of this method is to build a vertical-glass model in the quartz tube to significantly increase the collision probability of the carbon precursors and reactive fragments between each other with the glass surface. The growth rate of high-quality graphene on glass remarkably increases compared with the conventional gas flow CVD technique. The optical transmittance and sheet resistance of the graphene glass can be readily adjusted by regulating growth time. When growth time is 35 min, the graphene glass presents an intriguing sheet resistance of about 1.48 kΩ sq-1 at a transmittance of 93.08% and exhibits an excellent hydrophobic performance. The method is simple and scalable, and might stimulate various potential applications of transparent and conductive graphene glass in practical fields.
Graphene reinforced copper matrix composites (Gr/Cu) were fabricated by electrostatic self-assembly and powder metallurgy. The morphology and structure of graphene oxide, graphene oxide-Cu powders and Gr/Cu composites were characterized by scanning electronic microscopy, transmission electronic microscopy, X-ray diffraction and Raman spectroscopy, respectively. The effects of graphene contents, applied loads and sliding speeds on the tribological behavior of the composites were investigated. The results indicate that the coefficient of friction of the composites decreases first and then increases with increasing the graphene content. The lowest friction coefficient is achieved in 0.3 wt% Gr/Cu composite, which decreases by 65% compared to that of pure copper. The coefficient of friction of the composite does not have significant change with increasing the applied load, however, it increases with increasing the sliding speed. The tribological mechanisms of the composite under different conditions were also investigated.
A novel graphene reinforced BNi-2 composite filler was developed for brazing GH99 superalloy. The interfacial microstructure of brazed joints was analyzed by field emission scanning electron microscope and a transmission electron microscope. The effects of graphene addition on the microstructure evolution and mechanical properties of brazed joints were investigated, and the strengthening mechanism of graphene was analyzed. The results revealed that due to the addition of graphene, M23(C,B)6 compounds were synthesized in the γ solid solution and brittle boride precipitates near the brazing seam decreased. Graphene was effective in retarding solute atoms diffusion thus impeding the precipitation of borides. Furthermore, the low coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE) of graphene was conducive to relieve stress concentration of the brazed joints during the cooling process. The shear strengths of brazed joints were significantly improved by exerting the strengthening effect of graphene. The maximum shear strengths of the brazed joints were 410.4 MPa and 329.7 MPa at room temperature and 800 °C, respectively.
Nanostructures of silicon are gradually becoming hot candidate due to outstanding capability for trapping light and improving conversion efficiency of solar cell. In this paper, silicon nanowires (SiNWs) and silicon inverted pyramid arrays (SiIPs) were introduced on surface of Gr-Si solar cell through silver and copper-catalyzed chemical etching, respectively. The effects of SiNWs and SiIPs on carrier lifetime, optical properties and efficiency of Gr-SiNWs and Gr-SiIPs solar cells were systematically analyzed. The results show that the inverted pyramid arrays have more excellent ability for balancing antireflectance loss and surface area enlargement. The power conversion efficiency (PCE) and carrier lifetime of Gr-SiIPs devices respectively increase by 62% and 34% by comparing with that of Gr-SiNWs solar cells. Finally, the Gr-SiIPs cell with PCE of 5.63% was successfully achieved through nitric acid doping. This work proposes a new strategy to introduce the inverted pyramid arrays for improving the performance of Gr-Si solar cells.
In this work, graphene oxide (GO) nanosheets with surface modification by Tannic and Fe coordination complexes (TA-Fe) were incorporated into poly(vinylidene fluoride) (PVDF) to prepare high constant but low loss polymer nanocomposites, and the effect of TA-Fe interlayer on dielectric properties of the GO@TA-Fe/PVDF nanocomposites was investigated. The results indicate that the dosage, mixing ratio, and reaction time of TA-Fe complexes have obvious influences on the dielectric properties of the nanocomposites. Furthermore, the TA-Fe interlayer significantly influences the electrical properties of GO@TA-Fe nanoparticles and their PVDF composites, and the GO@TA-Fe/PVDF composites exhibit superior dielectric properties compared with raw GO/PVDF. Dielectric losses of the GO@TA-Fe/PVDF are significantly suppressed to a rather low level owing to the presence of TA-Fe layer, which serves as an interlayer between the GO sheets, thus preventing them from direct contacting with each other. Additionally, the dynamic dielectric relaxation of the GO/PVDF and GO@TA-Fe/PVDF nanocomposites was investigated in terms of temperature.
Poly(amidoamine) dendrimers-modified reduced graphene oxide nanosheets (PAMAM/rGO) composite was selected as a carrier of heterogeneous Ag0.3Co0.7 nanoparticles in order to obtain an excellent catalyst for ammonia borane (AB) hydrolysis. During the synthetic processes, GO could easily assembled with PAMAM by the electrostatic and hydrogen-bonding interactions. Structural characterization revealed that Ag0.3Co0.7 bimetallic nanoparticles with uniform size distribution of 5 nm are well dispersed on PAMAM/rGO composite architecture. Ag0.3Co0.7@PAMAM/rGO was found to be a highly active and reusable catalyst in hydrogen generation from the hydrolysis of AB with a turnover frequency value (TOF) of 19.79 molH2 min-1 molM-1 at 25.0 ± 0.1 °C and retained 75.4% of their initial activity with a complete release of hydrogen in five runs. The relatively high TOF value and low apparent activation energy (34.21 kJ mol-1) make these Ag0.3Co0.7@PAMAM/rGO NPs as a high-efficient catalyst for catalytic dehydrogenation of AB facilitating the development of practically applicable energy storage materials.