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Research Article
Effect of chromium interlayer thickness on interfacial thermal conductance across copper/diamond interface
Xiaoyan Liu, Fangyuan Sun, Luhua Wang, Zhanxun Che, Guangzhu Bai, Xitao Wang, Jinguo Wang, Moon J. Kim, and Hailong Zhang
Available online 29 July 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2336-9
[Abstract](6) [PDF 1745KB](3)

The thermal conductivity of diamond particles reinforced copper matrix  composite as an attractive thermal management material is significantly lowered by the non-wetting heterointerface. The paper investigates the heat transport behavior between a 200 nm Cu layer and a single-crystalline diamond substrate inserted by a chromium (Cr) interlayer having a series of thicknesses from 150 nm down to 5 nm. The purpose is to detect the impact of the modifying interlayer thickness on the interfacial thermal conductance (h) between Cu and diamond. The time-domain thermoreflectance measurements suggest that the introduction of Cr interlayer dramatically improves the h between Cu and diamond owing to the enhanced interfacial adhesion and bridged dissimilar phonon states between Cu and diamond. The h value exhibits a decreasing trend as the Cr interlayer becomes thicker because of the increase in thermal resistance of Cr interlayer. The high h values are observed for the Cr interlayer thicknesses below 21 nm since phononic transport channel dominates the thermal conduction in the ultrathin Cr layer. The findings provide a way to tune the thermal conduction across the metal/nonmetal heterogeneous interface, which plays a pivotal role in designing materials and devices for thermal management applications.

Invited Review
Review on silicon-based alloys for lithium ion battery anode
Zhiyuan Feng, Wenjie Peng, Zhixing Wang, Huajun Guo, Xinhai Li, Guochun Yan, and Jiexi Wang
Available online 24 July 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2335-x
[Abstract](36) [PDF 1417KB](17)

Silicon is the most attractive candidate for anodes in the next-generation high-energy lithium-ion batteries (LIBs) because it has high theoretical gravimetric lithium storage capacity and proper lithiation voltage as well as abundant resources on the earth. Consequently, massive efforts have been made to deeply dig out its potential for better electrochemical performance. Yet, some severe challenges still remain to be solved, such as the large volume change, low intrinsic electronic conductivity and poor rate capacity. Massive efforts have been spared on solving these problems by making nano-sized silicon materials. However, few reviews have been made to summarize the work on Si-based alloys. Herein, the recent processes relative to Si-based alloy anode active materials are reviewed. This review starts from the problems of Si anode and corresponding strategies. Then it focuses on Si-based alloys by dividing them into Si/Li active and in-active systems. Other special systems are also mentioned. Finally, further perspectives for enabling the application of Si-alloy anodes in commercial LIBs are provided.

Research Article
Effect of chemical composition on the micromorphology, phase composition, and calcification roasting process of vanadium slag
Tangxia Yu, Tao Jiang, Jing Wen, Hongyan Sun, Ming Li, and Yi Peng
Available online 24 July 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2334-y
[Abstract](20) [PDF 1739KB](2)

The chemical composition of vanadium slag significantly affects its element distribution and phase composition, which affect the subsequent calcification roasting process and vanadium recovery. In this work, seven kinds of vanadium slags derived from different regions in China were used as the raw materials to study the effects of different components on the vanadium slag’s micromorphology, phase composition, calcification roasting, and leaching rate of major elements using SEM, XRD, and ICP-AES. The results showed that the spinel phase was wrapped with silicate phase in all vanadium slag samples. The main elements in the spinel phase were Cr, V, and Ti from the interior to the exterior. The size of spinel phase in low chromium vanadium slag was larger than other vanadium slags with higher chromium contents. The spinel phase of high-calcium and high-phosphorus vanadium slag was more dispersed. The strongest diffraction peak of vanadium spinel phase in vanadium slag migrated to a higher diffraction angle, and (Fe0.6Cr0.4)2O3 was formed after calcification roasting as the chromium content increased. A large amount of Ca2SiO4 was produced because excess Ca reacted with Si in high-calcium and high-phosphorus vanadium slag. The vanadium leaching rates reached 88% in some vanadium slags. The chromium leaching rates were less than 5% in all vanadium slags. The silicon leaching rate in high-calcium and high-phosphorus vanadium slag was much higher than other slags. The leaching rates of manganese were higher than 10%, and the leaching rate of iron and titanium were negligible.

Research Article
The effects of shape and particle size on the photocatalytic kinetics and mechanism of nano-CeO2
Zixiang Cui, Lu Zhang, Yongqiang Xue, Yanan Feng, Mengying Wang, Jiaojiao Chen, Boteng Ji, Chenyu Wang, and Yidi Xue
Available online 20 July 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2332-0
[Abstract](27) [PDF 889KB](3)

Nanomaterials have been widely applied to many fields because of their excellent photocatalytic performance. The performance is closely related to the catalytic kinetics, but it is not completely clear that the influencing regularities of shape and particle size on the photocatalytic kinetics of nanomaterials and the photocatalytic kinetic mechanism. In this paper, nano-CeO2 with different shapes and particle sizes were prepared, the kinetic parameters of adsorption and photocatalytic degradation were determined, and the effects of shape and particle size on the kinetics of adsorption and photocatalysis and photocatalytic mechanism were discussed. The results show that the shape and particle size have significant influences. With the decreases of diameter, the performances of adsorption and photocatalysis of nano-CeO2 are improved; and these performances of spherical nano-CeO2 are greater than those of linear nano-CeO2. The shape and particle size have no effects on the kinetic order and mechanism of the whole photocatalytic process. Then a generalized mechanism of photocatalytic kinetics of nanomaterials was proposed and the mechanism rate equation was derived. Finally, the conclusion can be drawn: the desorption of photodegradation products is the control step of photocatalytic kinetics, and the kinetic order of photocatalytic degradation reaction is 1. The mechanism is universal and all nanomaterials have the same photocatalytic kinetic mechanism and order.

Invited Review
Research progress on selective laser melting processing for nickel-based superalloy
Maohang Zhang, Baicheng Zhang, Yaojie Wen, and Xuanhui Qu
Available online 19 July 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2331-1
[Abstract](25) [PDF 2638KB](4)

Selective laser melting (SLM), an additive manufacturing (AM) process mostly applied in metal material field, can fabricate complex shaped metal objects with high precision. Nickel-based superalloy possesses excellent mechanical property at elevated temperature and plays an important role in aviation industry. This paper emphasizes the researches of SLM processed Inconel 718, Inconel 625, CM247LC and Hastelloy X which are typical alloys with different strengthening mechanism and operating temperature. The strengthening mechanism and phase change evolution of different Nickel-based superalloy under laser irradiation are discussed. The influence of laser parameter and heat-treatment process on mechanical properties of SLM Nickel-based superalloy are systematically introduced. Moreover, the attractive industrial applications of SLM Nickel-based superalloy and printed components are presented. At last, the development of Nickel-based superalloy materials for SLM technology is prospected.

Research Article
Preparation and oxidation characteristics of ZrC-ZrB2 composite powders with different proportions
Yu Wang, Guohua Zhang, and Kuochih Chou
Available online 13 July 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2330-2
[Abstract](34) [PDF 1203KB](9)

ZrC and ZrB2 are both typical ultra-high temperature ceramics, which can be used in hyperthermal environment. In this study, a method for preparing ultrafine ZrC-ZrB2 composite powder is provided, by using the raw materials of nano ZrO2, carbon black, B4C, and metallic Ca. It is worth pointing out that ZrC-ZrB2 composite powder with any proportion of ZrC to ZrB2 could be synthesized by this method. Firstly, a mixture of ZrC and C is prepared by carbothermal reduction of ZrO2. By adjusting the addition amount of B4C, ZrC is boronized by B4C to generate ZrC-ZrB2 composite powder with different compositions. Using this method, five composition powders with different molar ratios (100ZrC, 75ZrC-25ZrB2, 50ZrC-50ZrB2, 25ZrC-75ZrB2, and 100ZrB2) are prepared. When the temperature of boronization and decarburization process is 1473 K, the particle size of product is only tens of nanometres. Finally, the oxidation characteristics of different composite powders are investigated through oxidation experiments. The oxidation resistance of ZrC-ZrB2 composite powder continues to increase as the content of ZrB2 increased.

Research Article
Effects of Zr content on electrochemical performance of Ti/Sn-Ru-Co-ZrOx electrodes
Linhui Chang, Sheng Chen, Xionghui Xie, Buming Chen, Haihong Qiao, Hui Huang, Zhong-cheng Guo, Yapeng He, and Ruidong Xu
Available online 7 July 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2326-y
[Abstract](78) [PDF 891KB](32)

The low cell voltage during electrolytic Mn from the MnCl2 system can effectively reduce the power consumption. In this work, the Ti/ Sn-Ru-Co-Zr modified anodes were obtained by using thermal decomposition oxidation. The physical parameters of coatings were observed by SEM. Based on the electrochemical performance and SEM/XRD of the coatings, the influences of Zr on electrode performance were studied and analyzed. When the mole ratio of Sn-Ru-Co-Zr = 6:1:0.8:0.3, the cracks on the surface of coatings were the smallest, and the compactness was the best due to the excellent filling effect of ZrO2 nanoparticles. Moreover, the electrode prepared under this condition had the lowest mass transfer resistance and high chloride evolution activity in the 1M NH4Cl + 1.5M HCl system. The service life of 3102 h was achieved according to the empirical formula of accelerated-life-test of the new type anode.

Research Article
The effect of strain induced melt activation treatment (SIMA) on the microstructure and electrochemical behavior of Zn sacrificial anodes
Behrooz Shayegh Boroujeny, Payam Raiesi Goojani, and Ehsan Akbari
Available online 7 July 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2328-9
[Abstract](34) [PDF 2237KB](3)

Microstructural properties and electrochemical performance of Zn sacrificial anodes during strain induced melt activation (SIMA) process were investigated in the present study. The samples were subjected to the compressive ratio of 20-50% at various temperatures (425-435 °C) and times (5-30 min). Short-term electrochemical tests (anode tests) according to DNV RP 401 and potentiodynamic polarization (PDP) tests were performed in 3.5 wt.% NaCl solution to evaluate the electrochemical efficiency and the corrosion behavior of the samples, respectively. The electrochemical test results for the optimum sample confirmed that the corrosion current density declined by 90%, and the anode efficiency slightly decreased compared with the raw sample. Energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), metallographic images, and microhardness profiles showed the accumulation of alloying elements on the boundary and the conversion of uniform corrosion into localized corrosion and hence the decrease of Zn sacrificial anode efficiency after the SIMA process.

Research Article
Effect of additives on iron recovery and dephosphorization by reduction roasting-magnetic separation of refractory high-phosphorus iron ore
Shichao Wu, Zhengyao Li, Tichang Sun, Jue Kou, and Xiaohui Li
Available online 7 July 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2329-8
[Abstract](68) [PDF 916KB](8)

The effect of CaCO3, Na2CO3 and CaF2 on the reduction roasting-magnetic separation of high-phosphorus iron ore containing phosphorus as Fe3PO7 and apatite was investigated. The result shows that Na2CO3 had the best effect on iron recovery and dephosphorization, followed by CaCO3, while CaF2 had almost no influence. The mechanism of CaCO3, Na2CO3 and CaF2 was studied by XRD and SEM-EDS. It turns out that Fe3PO7 was reduced to elemental phosphorus and formed iron phosphorus alloy with metallic iron without additives. The addition of CaCO3 reacted with Fe3PO7 to generate massive Ca3(PO4)2 and promoted the reduction of iron oxides, however, the growth of iron particles was inhibited. After adding Na2CO3, the phosphorus in Fe3PO7 was transferred to nepheline and Na2CO3 improved the reduction of iron oxides and the growth of iron particles, therefore, the recovery of iron and the separation of iron and phosphorus achieved the best. CaF2 reacted with Fe3PO7 to form fine Ca3(PO4)2 particles scattered around the iron particles, which made the separation of iron and phosphorus difficult.

Research Article
Effect of trace yttrium on the microstructure, mechanical property, and corrosion behavior of homogenized Mg-2Zn-0.1Mn-0.3Ca-xY biological magnesium alloy
Liangyu Wei, Mingfan Qi, Yuzhao Xu, Jingyuan Li, Jin Wang, Aisen Liu, and Jicheng Wang
Available online 7 July 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2327-x
[Abstract](22) [PDF 1933KB](1)

The effects of trace yttrium (Y) element on the microstructure, mechanical properties, and corrosion resistance of Mg-2Zn-0.3Ca-0.1Mn-xY (x=0, 0.1, 0.2, 0.3) biological magnesium alloys are investigated. Results show that grain size decreases from 310μm to 144μm when the Y content increases from 0 wt.% to 0.3 wt.%. At the same time, the volume fraction of the second phase increases from 0.4% to 6.0%, the yield strength of the alloy continues to increase, and the ultimate tensile strength and elongation decrease initially and then increase. When the Y content element increases to 0.3 wt.%, Mg3Zn6Y phase begins to precipitate in the alloy; thus, the alloy exhibits the most excellent mechanical property. At this time, its ultimate tensile strength, yield strength, and elongation are 119MPa, 69MPa, and 9.1%, respectively. In addition, when the Y content is 0.3 wt.%, the alloy shows the best corrosion resistance in the simulated body fluid (SBF). This investigation has revealed that the improvement of mechanical properties and corrosion resistance is mainly attributed to the grain refinement and the precipitated Mg3Zn6Y phase.

Research Article
Effects of BN content on the mechanical properties of nanocrystalline 3Y-TZP/Al2O3/BN dental ceramics
Lei Zhou, Yanfang Zhang, Pan Yi, Ying Wen, Chaofang Dong, Limin Meng, and Sefei Yang
Available online 30 June 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2324-0
[Abstract](42) [PDF 675KB](2)

3Y-TZP/3wt% alumina (Al2O3) powder was coated with varying amounts of boron nitride (BN) using the urea and borate reaction sintering method, and then multiphase ceramics were prepared by hot pressing sintering. The material properties of the synthesized ceramics, including micro-topography, compositional analysis, Vickers hardness, fracture toughness, and flexural strength, were compared according to the BN content. These properties were measured using techniques such as scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy and X-ray diffraction as well as a mechanical tester. The results showed that the BN content directly affected the material properties and machinability of the synthesized multiphase ceramics. The ceramic with a BN content of 12wt% showed the best processability, but had diminished mechanical properties (such as fracture toughness and bending strength), making it unsuitable for use in a fixed bridge of more than three units. The ceramic with a BN content of 9wt% showed better processability than those with 3 and 6wt% BN. However, the fracture toughness was affected by the addition of 9wt% BN, making this ceramic only usable as a base material for a three-unit fixed bridge. In contrast, the ceramics with a BN content of 3 or 6wt% fulfilled the criteria for use in multi-unit restoration, but their low processability made them unsuitable for milling after sintering.

Invited Review
A review on the recent progress of efficient utilization of titanium-bearing blast furnace slag
Yongfeng Cai, Ningning Song, Yunfei Yang, Lingmin Sun, Peng Hu, and Jinshu Wang
Available online 30 June 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2323-1
[Abstract](49) [PDF 808KB](7)

Considering the valuable compositions and potential environmental hazardousness of titanium-bearing blast furnace slag (BFS), developing efficient and green approaches to utilization of BFS is highly desired for resource economization and environmental protection. In the past decades, many attempts have been adopted to efficiently reuse BFS, and significant advances in understanding the fundamental features and the development of efficient approaches have been made. In this review, we have provided a comprehensive overview of the latest progress on efficient utilization BFS, and discussed the mechanism and characteristics of various approaches, along with their application prospects. In particular, the approaches of extraction and enrichment of titanium-bearing phases from BFS are highlighted due to their high availability of titanium resources. This systemic and comprehensive review may benefit to design new and green utilization route with high efficiency and low cost.

Research Article
Oxidation resistance of PM Ti-45Al-10Nb alloy at high temperature
Xuchen Jin, Peihao Ye, Hongrui Ji, Zhuanxia Suo, Boxin Wei, Xuewen Li, and Wenbin Fang
Available online 24 June 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2320-4
[Abstract](25) [PDF 1068KB](1)

TiAl alloy with high Nb content, nominally Ti-45Al-10Nb, was prepared by powder metallurgy, and the oxidation resistance at 850, 900, and 950℃ was investigated. The high-temperature oxidation-resistance mechanism and oxidation dynamics were discussed following the oxide skin morphology and microstructural evolution analysis. The oxide skin structures were similar for 850 and 900℃, with TiO2+Al2O3 mixture covering TiO2 with dispersed Nb2O5. At 950℃, the oxide skin was divided into four sublayers, from the outside to the parent metal: loose TiO2+Al2O3, dense Al2O3, dense TiO2+Nb2O5, and TiO2 matrix with dispersed Nb2O5. The Nb layer suppressed the outward diffusion of Ti atoms, hindering the growth of TiO2, and simultaneously promote the formation of a continuous Al2O3 protective layer, providing the alloy with long-term high-temperature oxidation resistance.

Research Article
Utilization of DTAB as a collector for reverse flotation separation of quartz from fluorapatite
Wenbiao Liu, Wenxuan Huang, Feng Rao, Zhanglei Zhu, Yongming Zheng, and Shuming Wen
Available online 24 June 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2321-3
[Abstract](68) [PDF 481KB](3)

Reverse flotation desilication has been an indispensable step for obtaining high-grade fluorapatite. In this work, Dodecyl Trimethyl Ammonium Bromide (DTAB) was recommended as an efficient collector for the reverse flotation separation of quartz from fluorapatite. Its collectivity for quartz and selectivity for fluorapatite were also compared with the figures corresponding to the conventional collector dodecylamine hydrochloride (DAC) via micro-flotation experiments. The adsorption behaviors of both DTAB and DAC on minerals were systematically investigated with surface chemical analyses such as contact angle determination, zeta potential detection, and adsorption density measurement. It was revealed that compared to DAC, DTAB displayed similar and strong collectivity for quartz, while it showed a better selectivity (or worse collectivity) for fluorapatite, resulting in a high-efficiency for the separation of the two minerals. Surface chemical analyses showed that the adsorption ability of DTAB on quartz surface was as strong as DAC, while the adsorption amount of DTAB on fluorapatite surface was much lower than that of DAC, which associated to the flotation performance well. During the floatation separation of the actual ore, 8% fluorapatite with higher grade can be obtained by using DTAB in contrast to DAC. Therefore, DTAB is a promising collector to the high-efficiency purification and sustainable utilization of the valuable fluorapatite recourses.

Research Article
Influences of multiple laser shock peening impacts on microstructure and mechanical properties of Ti-6Al-4V alloy fabricated by electron beam melting
Liang Lan, Ruyi Xin, Xinyuan Jin, Shuang Gao, and Bo He
Available online 24 June 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2322-2
[Abstract](92) [PDF 1248KB](8)

Laser shock peening (LSP) is an attractive post-processing method to tailor surface microstructure and enhance mechanical performances of additive manufactured (AM) components. The effects of multiple LSP impacts on the microstructure and mechanical properties of Ti-6Al-4V part produced by electron beam melting (EBM), as a mature AM process, were studied in this work. Microstructure, surface topography, residual stress and tensile performance of EBM-manufactured Ti-6Al-4V specimens were systematically analyzed subjected to different LSP impacts. The distribution of porosities in EBM sample was assessed via X-ray computed tomography. The results show that EBM samples with two LSP impacts possess a lower porosity value of 0.05% compared to the value of 0.08% for untreated samples. The strength of EBM samples with two LSP impacts is remarkably raised by 12% as compared with the as-built samples. The grains of α phase is refined in near-surface layer and a dramatic increase in the depth and magnitude of compressive residual stress (CRS) is achieved in EBM sample with multiple LSP treatments. The grain refinement of α phase and CRS with larger depth are responsible for the strength enhancement of EBM samples with two LSP impacts.

Research Article
High performance lithium-sulfur battery based on porous N-rich g-C3N4 nanotubes through a self-template method
Mengrong Wu, Mingyue Gao, Shuya Zhang, Ru Yang, Yongming Chen, Shangqing Sun, Jinfeng Xie, Xingmei Guo, Fu Cao, and Junhao Zhang
Available online 19 June 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2319-x
[Abstract](67) [PDF 915KB](14)

Due to the shuttle effect of lithium polysulfides (LPSs) and the non-conductivity of sulfur, the commercial development of lithium-sulfur batteries (Li-S) is severely limited. Herein, porous g-C3N4 nanotubes (PCNNTs) are synthesized by a self-template method as efficient sulfur host materials. The one-dimensional PCNNTs have a high specific surface area (143.47 m2/g) and abundance macro-/mesopores, which is used as the carrier with a high sulfur loading of 74.7 wt%. The Li-S battery with PCNNTs/S composite as cathode displays a low-capacity decay of 0.021% per cycle over 800 cycles at 0.5 C with an initial capacity of 704.8 mAh g-1. PCNNTs with tubular structure significantly alleviate the volume expansion caused by sulfur and lithium sulfide during charge/discharge cycling. Besides, the increased content of N greatly enhanced the chemical adsorption of lithium polysulfides. These synergistic effects make PCNNTs/S composite electrode presents excellent cycling stability and rate performance.

Research Article
Evolution behavior of γ″ phase of IN718 superalloy in temperature/stress coupled field
Hanzhong Deng, Lei Wang, Yang Liu, Xiu Song, Fanqiang Meng, and Shuo Huang
Available online 18 June 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2317-z
[Abstract](69) [PDF 994KB](9)

The evolution behavior of the γ″ phase of IN718 superalloy in a temperature/stress coupled field is investigated. Results showed that the coarsening rate of the γ′′ phase was significantly accelerated in the temperature/stress coupled field. Based on the detail microstructural and crystal defect analysis, it was found that with applied stress, the coarsening rate of the γ′′ phase was significantly higher than that without stress. The main reasons for the increase in the coarsening rate of the γ′′ phase were as follows: the vacancy formation energy was decreased by the applied stress, which led to an increase in the vacancy concentration; in the temperature/stress coupled field, the Nb atoms easily combined with vacancies to form complexes and diffused with the complexes, resulting in a significant increase in the Nb atom diffusion coefficient, because Nb atom diffusion is the key control factor.

Research Article
A high thermal conductivity and high strength magnesium alloy for high pressure die cast ultrathin-walled component
Jian Rong, Wenlong Xiao, Xinqing Zhao, Chaoli Ma, Haimiao Liao, Donglei He, Ming Chen, Meng Huang, and Chen Huang
Available online 18 June 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2318-y
[Abstract](61) [PDF 1361KB](6)

With 3C industries developing rapidly, the demand for high-thermal-conductivity magnesium alloy with high mechanical performance is increasing rapidly. However, the thermal conductivities of most common Mg foundry alloys (such as Mg-9wt.%-1wt%Zn) are still relativity low. In the present study, we developed a high-thermal-conductivity Mg-4Al-4Zn-4RE-1Ca (wt.%, AZEX4441) alloy with good mechanical properties for ultrathin-walled cellphone components via high pressure die casting (HPDC). The HPDC AZEX4441 alloy exhibited a fine homogeneous microstructure (the average grain size is 2.8 μm) with granular Al11RE3, fibrous Al2REZn2, and networked Ca6Mg2Zn3 phases distributed at the grain boundaries. The room-temperature thermal conductivity of the HPDC AZEX4441 alloy was 94.4 W/(m·K), which was much higher than 53.7 W/(m·K) of the HPDC AZ91D alloy. The Al and Zn elements of the AZEX4441 alloy were largely consumed by the formation of Al11RE3 and Al2REZn2 as well as Ca2Mg6Zn3 phases due to the addition of RE and Ca. Therefore, the lattice distortion induced by solute atoms of the AZEX4441 alloy (0.171%) was much lower than that of AZ91D alloy (0.441%), which was responsible for the high thermal conductivity of the AZEX4441 alloy. Furthermore, the AZEX4441 alloy exhibited a high yield strength (YS) of ~185 MPa, ultimate tensile strength (UTS) of ~233 MPa, and elongation of ~4.2%, indicating comparable tensile properties to AZ91D alloy. The results will contribute to developing high-performance Mg alloys with a combination of high thermal conductivity, high strength, and good castability.

Research Article
Effects of the incorporation amount of CdS and Cd(SCN2H4)2Cl2 on the performance of perovskite solar cells
Jihong Zheng, Liangxin Zhu, Zhitao Shen, Fumin Li, Lanyu Ling, Huilin Li, and Chong Chen
Available online 12 June 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2316-0
[Abstract](69) [PDF 1100KB](7)

An excellent organolead halide perovskite film plays an important role for good-performance perovskite solar cells (PSCs), while there are many defects at perovskite crystals, which is bad for both the photovoltaic properties and the stability of solar cells. Therefore, a strategy of incorporating a complex of CdS and Cd(SCN2H4)2Cl2 into CH3NH3PbI3 active layer is proposed to solve this problem. This study systematically analyzes the effect of different doping concentration of CdS and Cd(SCN2H4)2Cl2 on the performance and stability of PSCs. Our results find that an appropriate incorporation concentration of CdS and Cd(SCN2H4)2Cl2 doped in CH3NH3PbI3 can improve the performance of the prepared solar cells, which is mainly due to that the CdS and Cd(SCN2H4)2Cl2 can effectively passivate the defects at perovskite crystals, thereby suppressing the charge recombination in PSCs and promoting the charge extraction at TiO2/perovskite interface. Furthermore, the stability of PSCs is also significantly improved due to the reduced perovskite crystal defects and enhanced compactness of the C:C:CH3NH3PbI3 composite film. 

Research Article
Preparation of CoO/SnO2@NC/S composite as high-stability cathode material for lithium-sulfur batteries
Mengting Duan, Mengrong Wu, Kai Xue, Zhengxu Bian, Jing Shi, Xingmei Guo, Fu Cao, Junhao Zhang, Qinghong Kong, and Feng Zhang
Available online 12 June 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2315-1
[Abstract](57) [PDF 1042KB](11)

To improve the sulfur loading capacity of lithium-sulfur batteries (Li-S batteries) cathode and avoid the inevitable “shuttle effect”, hollow N doped carbon coated CoO/SnO2 (CoO/SnO2@NC) composite has been designed and prepared by a hydrothermal-calcination method. The specific surface area of CoO/SnO2@NC composite is 85.464 m2 g-1, and the pore volume is 0.1189 cm3 g-1. The hollow core/shell structure as a carrier has a sulfur loading amount of 66.10%. The initial specific capacity of the assembled Li-S batteries is 395.7 mAh g-1 at 0.2 C, which maintains 302.7 mAh g-1 after 400 cycles. When the rate increases to 2.5 C, the specific capacity still has 221.2 mAh g-1. The excellent lithium storage performance is attributed to the core-shell structure with high specific surface area and porosity. This structure effectively increases the sulfur loading, enhances the chemical adsorption of lithium polysulfides, and reduces direct contact between CoO/SnO2 and the electrolyte.

Research Article
Mechanism of calcium lignosulfonate in apatite and dolomite flotation system
Bo Feng, Liangzhu Zhang, Wenpu Zhang, Huihui Wang, and Zhiyong Gao
Available online 11 June 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2313-3
[Abstract](66) [PDF 571KB](8)

Since the physical and chemical properties of apatite and dolomite can be similar, the separation of these two minerals is difficult. Therefore, when performing this separation using the flotation method, it is necessary to search for selective depressants. An experimental research was performed on the separation behavior of apatite and dolomite using calcium lignosulfonate as a depressant, and the mechanism by which this occurs was analyzed. The results show that calcium lignosulfonate has a depressant effect on both apatite and dolomite, but the depressant effect on dolomite is stronger at the same dosage. Mechanism analysis shows that the adsorptive capacity of calcium lignosulfonate on dolomite is higher than that of apatite, which is due to the strong reaction between calcium lignosulfonate and the Ca sites on dolomite. In addition, there is a hydrogen bond between calcium lignosulfonate and dolomite, which further prevents the adsorption of sodium oleate to dolomite, thus greatly inhibiting the flotation of dolomite.

Research Article
Isothermal oxidation behavior of Nb-bearing austenitic cast steels at 950°C
Hailong Zhao, Longfei Li, and Qiang Feng
Available online 11 June 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2314-2
[Abstract](160) [PDF 1694KB](4)

The oxidation behaviors of three austenitic cast steels with different morphology of primary carbides at 950°C in air was investigated using SEM, EDS, XRD and FIB/TEM. It was found that their oxidation kinetics followed a logarithmic law and the oxidation rate could be significantly decreased as long as a continuous silica layer formed at the scale/substrate interface. When the local Si concentration was inadequate, the internal oxidation beneath the oxide scale occurred. The spallation of oxides during cooling could be inhibited with the formation of internal oxidation, owing to the reduced mismatch stress between the oxide scale and the substrate. The "Chinese-script" primary Nb(C,N) was superior to the dispersed primary Nb(C,N) in suppressing the oxidation penetration in the interdendritic region by supplying a high density of Cr quick-diffusion channels. In addition, the innermost and the outermost oxidation layers were both found to be enriched with Cr, while the Cr evaporation in the outermost layer was significant when the water-vapor concentration in the environment was high enough. These findings further the understanding regarding the oxidation behavior of austenitic cast steels and will promote the alloy development for exhaust components.

Research Article
Layered barium vanadate nanobelts for high-performance aqueous zinc-ion batteries
Xinghua Qin, Yehong Du, Pengchao Zhang, Xinyu Wang, Qiongqiong Lu, Aikai Yang, and Juncai Sun
Available online 5 June 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2312-4
[Abstract](193) [PDF 1917KB](6)

Aqueous zinc-ion batteries (ZIBs) are deemed as the idea option for large-scale energy storage systems owing to many alluring merits including low manufacture cost, environmental friendliness, and high operations safety. However, to develop high-performance cathode is still significance for practical application of ZIBs. Herein, Ba0.23V2O5·1.1H2O (BaVO) nanobelts were fabricated as cathode materials of ZIBs by a typical hydrothermal synthesis method. Benefiting from the increased interlayer distance of 13.1 Å by Ba2+ and H2O pre-intercalated, the obtained BaVO nanobelts showed an excellent initial discharge capacity of 378 mA·h·g-1 at 0.1 A·g-1, a great rate performance (e.g., 172 mA·h·g-1 at 5 A·g-1), and a superior capacity retention (93% after 2000 cycles at 5 A·g-1).

Research Article
Characterization and ultraviolet–visible shielding property of samariumcerium compounds containing Sm2O2S prepared by Co-precipitation method
Yanping Li, Xue Bian, Xun Jin, Peng Cen, Wenyuan Wu, and Gaofeng Fu
Available online 1 June 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2309-z
[Abstract](60) [PDF 1452KB](4)

Since ultraviolet (UV) light, as well as blue light, which was part of visible light, was harmful to skin, samarium-cerium compounds containing Sm2O2S were synthesized by co-precipitation method. This kind of compounds blocks not only UV light, but also blue light that is part of visible light. The minimum values of average transmittance (360–450 nm) and band gap of samarium-cerium compounds were 8.90% and 2.30 eV, respectively, which were less than 13.96% and 2.63 eV of CeO2. Elemental analysis (EA), X-ray diffraction (XRD), Fourier transformation infrared (FT-IR), and Raman spectra determined that the samples contained Ce4O7, Sm2O2S, Sm2O3, and Sm2O2SO4. The micro-structure of samples was analyzed by scanning and transmission electron microscopy (SEM, TEM). X-ray photoelectron spectrum (XPS) showed cerium had Ce3+ and Ce4+ valence states, and oxygen was divided into lattice oxygen and oxygen vacancy that was direct cause of the decrease of average transmittance and band gap.

Research Article
Kinetic analysis and modeling of maize straw hydrochar combustion using multi-Gaussian-distributed activation energy model
Chunmei Yu, Shan Ren, Guangwei Wang, Junjun Xu, Haipeng Teng, Tao Li, Chunchao Huang, and Chuan Wang
Available online 18 May 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2305-3
[Abstract](77) [PDF 694KB](5)

This study investigates hydrochar combustion kinetics using a multi-Gaussian-distributed activation energy model (DAEM) to expand knowledge on combustion mechanisms. The results demonstrate that the kinetic parameters calculated by the multi-Gaussian-DAEM accurately represented the experimental conversion rate curves. Overall, the feedstock combustion could be divided into four stages: the decomposition of hemicellulose, cellulose, lignin, and char combustion. The hydrochar combustion could in turn be divided into three stages: the combustion of cellulose, lignin, and char. The mean activation energy ranges obtained for the cellulose, lignin, and char of the hydrochar were 273.7–292.8, 301.6–334.5, and 355.2–365.1 kJ/mol, respectively, with standard deviations of 2.1–23.1, 9.5–27.4, and 12.1–22.9 kJ/mol, respectively. The cellulose and lignin contents first increased and then decreased with increasing hydrothermal carbonization (HTC) temperature, while the mass fraction of char gradually increased.

Research Article
Incorporation of nano/micron-SiC particles in Ni-based composite coatings towards enhanced mechanical and anti-corrosion properties
Bowei Zhang, Qiao Zhang, Zhan Zhang, Kui Xiao, Qiong Yao, Guojia Ma, Gang Sun, and Junsheng Wu
Available online 18 May 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2307-1
[Abstract](49) [PDF 943KB](5)

Ni-based composite coatings incorporated with nano/micron SiC particles were fabricated via electrochemical co-deposition in Watts bath, followed by the evaluation of their mechanical and anti-corrosion properties. The micrographic observations suggest that the SiC particles with various sizes can be well incorporated to the Ni substrate. X-ray diffraction (XRD) patterns indicate that SiC particles with smaller sizes could weaken the preferential growth of Ni along (2 0 0) facet. In addition, it is found that the incorporated SiC particles with medium micron sizes (8 μm and 1.5 μm) could significantly enhance the micro-hardness of the Ni composite coatings. Nevertheless, electrochemical measurements demonstrate that micron-sized SiC particles would weaken the corrosion resistance of Ni composite coatings ascribed to the structure defects induced. In contrast, the combined incorporation of nanosized (50 nm) SiC particles with medium micron (1.5 μm) ones is capable of promoting the compactness of the composite coatings, which is beneficial to the long-term corrosion resistance with negligible micro-hardness loss.

Research Article
Effect of Al2O3 content on the viscosity and structure of CaO–SiO2–Cr2O3–Al2O3 slags
Fang Yuan, Zheng Zhao, Yanling Zhang, and Tuo Wu
Available online 18 May 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2306-2
[Abstract](90) [PDF 1282KB](12)

The effect of Al2O3 on the viscosity and structure of CaO–SiO2–Cr2O3–Al2O3 slags is investigated to facilitate recycling of Cr in steelmaking slags. The slags exhibit good Newtonian behavior at high temperature. The viscosity of acidic slag first increases from 0.825 to 1.141 Pa·s as the Al2O3 content increases from 0 to 10wt% and then decreases to 1.071 Pa·s as the Al2O3 content increases further to 15wt%. The viscosity of basic slag first increases from 0.084 to 0.158 Pa·s as the Al2O3 content increases from 0 to 15wt% and then decreases to 0.135 Pa·s as the Al2O3 content increases further to 20wt%. Furthermore, Cr2O3-containing slag requires less Al2O3 to reach the maximum viscosity than Cr2O3-free slag; the Al2O3 contents at which the behavior changes are 10wt% and 15wt% for acidic and basic slags, respectively. The activation energy of the slags is consistent with the viscosity results. Raman spectra demonstrate that [AlO4] tetrahedra appear initially and are replaced by [AlO6] octahedra with further addition of Al2O3. The dissolved organic phosphorus content of the slag first increases and then decreases with increasing Al2O3 content, which is consistent with the viscosity and Raman results.

Research Article
Significantly improved hydrogen storage behaviors of MgH2 with Nb nanocatalyst
Farai Michael Nyahuma, Liuting Zhang, Mengchen Song, Xiong Lu, Beibei Xiao, Jiaguang Zheng, and Fuying Wu
Available online 13 May 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2303-5
[Abstract](79) [PDF 1697KB](3)

The study explores the excellent modification effect of Nb nanocatalyst prepared via surfactant assisted ball milling technique (SABM) on the hydrogen storage properties of MgH2. Optimal catalyst doping concentration was determined by comparing onset decomposition temperature, released hydrogen capacity and reaction rate for different MgH2+ywt% Nb (y = 0, 3, 5, 7, 9) composites. The MgH2+5wt% Nb composite started releasing hydrogen at 186.7℃ and a total of 7.0wt% hydrogen was released in the dehydrogenation process. In addition, 5wt% Nb doped MgH2 also managed to release 4.2wt% H2 within 14 minutes at 250℃ and had the ability to absorb 4.0wt% hydrogen in 30 minutes at 100℃. Cycling tests revealed that MgH2+5wt% Nb could retain 6.3 wt% H2 capacity (89.2%) after 20 cycles. Dehydrogenation and hydrogenation activation energy values were decreased from 140.51±4.74 kJ·mol-1 and 70.67±2.07 kJ·mol-1 to 90.04±2.83 kJ·mol-1 and 53.46±3.33 kJ·mol-1 after doping MgH2 with Nb, respectively. Microstructure analysis proved that homogeneously distributed NbH acted as active catalytic unit for improving the hydrogen storage performance of MgH2. These results indicate SABM can be considered as an option to develop other nanocatalysts for energy related areas.

Research Article
Various CVD growth behaviors of graphene
Jie Wang, Tengfei Fan, Jianchen Lu, Xiaoming Cai, Lei Gao, and Jinming Cai
Available online 9 May 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2302-6
[Abstract](48) [PDF 1058KB](3)

Optimizing growth parameters, graphene with different morphologies, such as dendrites, rectangle and hexagon have been obtained by low-pressure chemical vapor deposition (CVD) on polycrystalline copper substrates. Meanwhile the evolution of fractal graphene which grew on polycrystalline copper substrate has also been observed. When the equilibrium growth state of graphene is destroyed, its intrinsic hexagonal symmetry structure will be changed to other non-hexagonal symmetry shape. Then we presented a systematic and comprehensive study of the evolution of graphene morphologies grown on solid copper as a function of the hydrogen to methane ratio in a controllable way. In addition, the phenomenon of stitching the snow-like graphene together and stacking graphene with different angles were also observed.

Research Article
The wetting behavior of CaO-Al2O3-based mold flux with various BaO and MgO contents on steel substrate
Lejun Zhou, Hao Luo, Wanlin Wang, Houfa Wu, Erzhuo Gao, You Zhou, and Daoyuan Huang
Available online 8 May 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2300-8
[Abstract](70) [PDF 747KB](8)

The interfacial phenomena in mold have great impact on the smooth operation and the quality of the casting product. In this paper, the wetting behavior of CaO-Al2O3-based mold flux with different BaO and MgO contents was studied. The results show that the contact angle between molten flux and IF steel substrate increased from 62.4o to 74.5o with the increase of BaO content from 3wt% to 7wt%, while it decreased from 62.4o to 51.3o with the increase of MgO content from 3wt% to 7wt%. The interfacial tension also increased from 1630.3 to 1740.8 mN/m when the BaO content increased, but it reduced from 1630.3 to 1539.7 mN/m with the addition of MgO. The changes of contact angle and interfacial tension were mainly due to the fact that the bridging oxygen (O0) at the interface was broken into non-bridging oxygen (O-) and free oxygen (O2-) by MgO. However, more O- and O2- connected into O0 when BaO was added, since the charge compensation effect of BaO was so stronger that it offset the effect of providing O2−.

Research Article
Pyrolysis behaviour and combustion kinetics of waste printed circuit boards
kang Yan, Chongwei Liu, Liping Liu, Min Xiong, Zhongtang Zhang, Shuiping Zhong, Zhifeng Xu, and Jindi Huang
Available online 30 April 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2299-x
[Abstract](62) [PDF 1158KB](2)

The effective recycling of waste printed circuit boards (WPCBs) can conserve resources and reduce environmental pollution. This study explores the pyrolysis and combustion characteristics of WPCBs in various atmospheres through thermogravimetric and Gaussian fitting analyses. Furthermore, this study analyses the pyrolysis products and combustion processes of WPCBs through thermogravimetric–Fourier transform infrared and thermogravimetric–mass spectrometry analytical techniques. Results show that the pyrolysis and combustion processes of WPCBs do not constitute a single reaction, but rather, they constitute an overlap of multiple reactions. The pyrolysis and combustion process of WPCBs is divided into multiple reactions by Gaussian peak fitting, and the kinetic parameters of each reaction are obtained by the Coats-Redfern method. In an argon atmosphere, pyrolysis consists of the overlap of the preliminary pyrolysis of epoxy resin, pyrolysis of small organic molecules, and pyrolysis of brominated flame retardants. The reaction mechanism functions are G(α)= (1-α)-1-1, G(α) = (1-α)-1-1 and G(α)= [-(1-α)]4 (α is the conversion rate of the reaction,  G(α) is the mechanism function of the reaction). The combustion of WPCB in oxygen consists of the overlap of the epoxy resin and brominated flame retardant combustion reactions; the reaction mechanism functions are G(α)= ((1-α)-1/3-1)2 and G(α)= ((1-α)-1/3-1)2. This study provided the theoretical basis for pollution control, process optimization and reactor design of WPCBs pyrolysis.

Research Article
Effect of Al content on the reaction between Fe-10Mn-xAl (x=0.035, 0.5, 1, 2 wt%) steel and CaO-SiO2-Al2O3-MgO slag
Hui-xiang Yu, De-xin Yang, Jia-ming Zhang, Guang-yuan Qiu, and Ni Zhang
Available online 28 April 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2298-y
[Abstract](82) [PDF 612KB](16)

The effect of Al content (0.035, 0.5, 1 and 2 wt%) on the composition change of steel and slag, as well as inclusion transformation of high manganese steel after equilibrated with CaO-SiO2-Al2O3-MgO slag was studied by method of slag/steel reaction. The experimental results show that, as the initial content of Al increased from 0.035% to 2%, Al gradually replaced Mn to react with SiO2 in slag to avoid the loss of Mn due to the reaction, which caused both Al2O3 in slag and Si in steel to increase, while SiO2 and MnO in slag to reduce. In addition, the type of inclusions also evolved as the initial Al content increased. The evolution route of inclusions was MnO→MnO-Al2O3-MgO→MgO→MnO-CaO-Al2O3-MgO and MnO-CaO-MgO. The shape of inclusions evolved from spherical to irregular, faceted, and finally transformed to spherical. The average size of inclusions presented a trend that was increasing first and then decreasing. The transformation mechanism of inclusions was explored. As the initial content of Al increased, Mg and Ca were reduced from top slag into molten steel in sequence, which consequently caused the transformation of inclusions.

Research Article
Interfacial microstructure evolution of 12Cr1MoV/TP347H dissimilar steel welded joints during aging
Yuan Li, Yan-ping Zeng, and Zhi-chun Wang
Available online 23 April 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2295-1
[Abstract](73) [PDF 2212KB](7)

The interfacial microstructure evolution of 12Cr1MoV/TP347H dissimilar steel welded joints with a nickel-based filler metal during aging was studied in detail to elucidate the mechanism of premature failures of this kind of joints. The results showed that not only a band of granular Cr23C6 carbides were formed along the fusion boundary in the ferritic steel during aging, but also a large number of granular or plate-like Cr23C6 carbides, which have a cube-cube orientation relationship with the matrix, were also precipitated on the weld metal side of the fusion boundary, making this zone be etched more easily than the other zone and become a dark etched band. Stacking faults were found in some Cr23C6 carbides. In the as-welded state, deformation twins were observed in the weld metal with a fully austenitic structure. The peak microhardness was shifted from the ferritic steel side to the weld metal side of the fusion boundary after aging and the peak value increased significantly. Based on the experimental results, a mechanism of premature failures of the joints was proposed.

Research Article
Effect of particle micro-structure on the electrochemical properties of LiNi0.8Co0.1Mn0.1O2 cathode material
Ze-xun Tang, Hong-qi Ye, Xin Ma, and Kai Han
Available online 23 April 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2296-0
[Abstract](74) [PDF 1375KB](8)

Ni-rich layered material is a kind of high-capacity cathode to meet the requirement of electric vehicles. As for the typical LiNi0.8Co0.1Mn0.1O2 material, the particle formation is significant for electrochemical properties of the cathode. In this work, the structure, morphology and electrochemical performance of LiNi0.8Co0.1Mn0.1O2 secondary particles and single crystals are systematically studied. A lower Ni2+/Ni3+ ratio of 0.66 and a lower residual alkali content of 2280 ppm were achieved on the surface of single crystals. In addition, the single crystals showed a discharge capacity of 191.6 mAh/g at 0.2 C (~12 mAh/g lower than that of the secondary particles) and enhanced electrochemical stability, especially when cycled at 50 °C and in a wider electrochemical window (between 3.0 and 4.4 V vs. Li+/Li). The LiNi0.8Co0.1Mn0.1O2 secondary particles were suitable for applications requiring high specific capacity, whereas single crystals exhibited better stability, indicating that they are more suitable for use in long life requested devices.

Research Article
Simultaneously improving mechanical properties and corrosion resistance of as-cast AZ91 Mg alloy by ultrasonic surface rolling
Jing Han, Cong Wang, Yuan-ming Song, Zhi-yuan Liu, Jia-peng Sun, and Ji-yun Zhao
Available online 23 April 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2294-2
[Abstract](92) [PDF 1659KB](22)

Mg alloy casting parts commonly suffer from drawbacks of low surface properties, high susceptibility to corrosion, unsatisfactory absolute strength, and poor ductility, which seriously limit their wide application. Here, a surface nanocrystallization technique, i.e., ultrasonic surface rolling (USR), was applied on an as-cast AZ91 Mg alloy sheet to improve its corrosion resistance and mechanical properties. The USR produces double smooth surfaces with Ra=0.026 μm and gradient nanostructured surface layers on the sheet. Due to this special microstructure modification, the USR sheet exhibits 51% and 50% improvements in tensile yield strength and ultimate strength without visibly sacrificed ductility comparable to its untreated counterpart, as well as a 24% improvement in surface hardness. The USR sheet also shows good corrosion resistance in 3.5% NaCl aqueous solution. The corrosion current density of the USR sheet reduces by 63% after immersion for 1 h, and 25% after immersion for 24 h compared to that of the untreated counterpart. The enhanced strength and hardness are mainly related to the gradient nanostructure. The improved corrosion resistance is mainly ascribed to the decreased surface roughness, nanostructured surface, and residual compressive stress. The present results state that USR is an effective and attractive method to improve multiple properties of Mg alloy casting parts, and thus can be used as an additional and last working procedure to achieve high-performance Mg alloy casting parts.

Research Article
Quantitative micro-electrochemical study of duplex stainless steel 2205 in 3.5wt% NaCl solution
Shuang-yu Cai, Ke-ke Lu, Xin-nan Li, Lei Wen, Fei-fei Huang, and Ying Jin
Available online 20 April 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2291-5
[Abstract](152) [PDF 849KB](28)

Duplex stainless steels (DSSs) are suffering from various localized corrosion attacks such as pitting, selective dissolution, crevice corrosion during their service period. It is of great value to quantitatively analyze and grasp the micro-electrochemical corrosion behavior and related mechanism for DSSs on the micrometer or even smaller scales. In this work, scanning Kelvin probe force microscopy (SKPFM) and energy dispersive spectroscopy (EDS) measurements were performed to reveal the difference between the austenite phase and ferrite phase in microregion of DSS 2205. Then traditional electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) and potentiodynamic polarization (PDP) tests were employed for micro-electrochemical characterization of DSS 2205 with different proportion phases in Φ40 μm and Φ10 μm micro holes. Both of them can only be utilized for qualitative or semi-quantitative micro-electrochemical characterization of DSS 2205. Coulostatic perturbation method was employed for quantitative micro-electrochemical characterization of DSS 2205. What is more, the applicable conditions of coulostatic perturbation were analyzed in depth by establishing a detailed electrochemical interface circuit. A series of microregion coulostatic perturbations for DSS 2205 with different proportion phases in Φ10 μm micro holes showed that as the austenite proportion increases, the corresponding polarization resistance of microregion increases linearly.

Research Article
Recover titanium, aluminum, magnesium and separate silicon from titanium-bearing blast furnace slag by sulfuric acid curing-leaching
Long Wang, Liang Chen, Wei-zao Liu, Guo-quan Zhang, Sheng-wei Tang, Hai-rong Yue, Bin Liang, and Dong-mei Luo
Available online 20 April 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2293-3
[Abstract](72) [PDF 1339KB](11)

An energy-efficient route was adopted to treat titanium-bearing blast furnace slag (TBBFS) in this study. Titanium, aluminum and magnesium were simultaneously extracted and silicon was separated by sulfuric acid curing in low temperature and low concentration sulfuric acid leaching. The process parameters of sulfuric acid curing TBBFS were systematically studied. Under the optimal conditions, the recovery of titanium, aluminum and magnesium reached 85.96%, 81.17% and 93.82%, respectively. The rapid leaching model was used to limit the dissolution and polymerization of silicon, and the dissolution of silicon was only 3.18%. The mechanism of sulfuric acid curing-leaching was investigated. During the curing process, the reaction occurred rapidly and released heat massively. Under the attack of hydrogen ions, the structure of TBBFS was destroyed, silicate was depolymerized to form filterable silica, and titanium, magnesium, aluminum, and calcium ions were replaced to form sulfates and enriched on the surface of silica particles. Titanium, aluminum, and magnesium were recovered in the leaching solution, and calcium sulfate and silica were enriched in the residue after leaching. This method could effectively avoid the formation of silica sol during the leaching process and accelerate the solid-liquid separation.

Research Article
Anion-immobilized solid composite electrolytes based on metal-organic frameworks and superacid ZrO2 fillers for high-performance all solid-state lithium metal batteries
Tao Wei, Zao-hong Zhang, Qi Zhang, Jia-hao Lu, Qi-ming Xiong, Feng-yue Wang, Xin-ping Zhou, Wen-jia Zhao, and Xiang-yun Qiu
Available online 13 April 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2289-z
[Abstract](218) [PDF 1452KB](16)
Anion-immobilized solid composite electrolytes (SCEs) are important to restrain the propagation of lithium dendrites for all solid-state lithium metal batteries (ASSLMBs). Herein, a novel SCEs based on metal-organic frameworks (MOFs, UiO-66-NH2) and superacid ZrO2 (S-ZrO2) fillers are proposed, and the samples were characterized by XRD, SEM, EDS, TGA and some other electrochemical measurements. The -NH2 groups of UiO-66-NH2 combines with F atoms of PVDF-HFP chains by hydrogen bonds, leading to a high electrochemical stability window of 5 V. Owing to the incorporation of UiO-66-NH2 and S-ZrO2 in PVDF-HFP polymer, the open metal sites of MOFs and acid surfaces of S-ZrO2 can immobilize anions by strong Lewis acid-base interaction, which enhances the effect of immobilization anions, achieving a high Li-ion transference number (t(+)) of 0.72, and acquiring a high ionic conductivity of 1.05×10-4 S cm-1 at 60℃. The symmetrical Li/Li cells with the anion-immobilized SCEs may steadily operate for over 600 h at 0.05 mA cm-2 without the short-circuit occurring. Besides, the solid composite Li/LiFePO4 (LFP) cell with the anion-immobilized SCEs shows a superior discharge specific capacity of 158 mAh g-1 at 0.2 C. The results illustrate that the anion-immobilized SCEs are one of the most promising choices to optimize the performances of ASSLMBs.
Research Article
Influence of process parameters and aging treatment on the microstructure and mechanical properties of AlSi8Mg3 alloy fabricated by selective laser melting
Yao-xiang Geng, Hao Tang, Jun-hua Xu, Yu Hou, Yu-xin Wang, Zhen He, Zhi-jie Zhang, Hong-bo Ju, and Li-hua Yu
Available online 31 March 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2287-1
[Abstract](91) [PDF 1808KB](7)
Many studies have investigated the selective laser melting (SLM) of AlSi10Mg and AlSi7Mg alloys, but there is still a lack of researches focused on Al-Si-Mg alloys specifically tailored for SLM. In this work, a novel high Mg-content AlSi8Mg3 alloy was specifically designed for SLM. The results showed that this new alloy exhibited excellent SLM processability with the lowest porosity of 0.07%. Massive lattice distortion led to a high Vickers hardness in samples fabricated at a high laser scanning speed due to the precipitation of Mg2Si nanoparticles from the α-Al matrix induced by high-intensity intrinsic heat treatment during SLM. The maximum microhardness and compressive yield strength of the alloy reached 211±4 HV and 526±12 MPa, respectively. After aging treatment at 150 ℃, the maximum microhardness and compressive yield strength of the samples were further improved to 221±4 HV and 577±5 MPa, respectively. These values are higher than those of most known aluminum alloys fabricated by SLM. This paper provides a new idea for optimizing the mechanical properties of Al-Si-Mg alloys fabricated using SLM.
Research Article
Ultrafine nano-scale Cu2Sb alloy confined in three-dimension porous carbon as anode for sodium-ion and potassium-ion batteries
Dan Wang, Qun Ma, Kang-hui Tian, Chan-qin Duan, Zhi-yuan Wang, and Yan-guo Liu
Available online 27 March 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2286-2
[Abstract](168) [PDF 1210KB](15)
Ultrafine nano-scale Cu2Sb alloy confined in three-dimension porous carbon is synthesized through NaCl template-assisted vacuum freeze-drying followed by high temperature sintering process and is evaluated as anode for sodium-ion batteries (SIBs) and potassium-ion batteries (PIBs). It exerts excellent cycling durability (the capacity can be maintained at 328.3 mAh g-1 after 100 cycles for SIBs and 260 mAh g-1 for PIBs) and rate capability (199 mAh g−1 at 5 A g−1 for SIBs and 148 mAh g−1 at 5 A g−1 for PIBs) due to smooth electron transport path and fast Na/K ion diffusion rate as well as restricted volume changes owning to the synergistic effect of three-dimensional porous carbon networks and ultrafine bimetallic nanoalloy. This study provides an ingenious design route and simple preparation method towards exploring high-property electrode for K-ion and Na-ion batteries, and it also opens up broad application prospects in other electrochemical applications.
Research Article
Effects of Mg and La on the evolution of inclusions and microstructure in Ca–Ti treated steel
Lei Wang, Bo Song, Zhan-bing Yang, Xiao-kang Cui, Zhen Liu, Wen-sen Cheng, and Jing-hong Mao
Available online 26 March 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2285-3
[Abstract](90) [PDF 1481KB](11)
The evolution of inclusions and the formation of acicular ferrite (AF) in Ca–Ti treated steel were systematically investigated after Mg and La addition. The inclusions in molten steel were Ca–Al–O, Ca–Al–Mg–O and La–Mg–Ca–Al–O after Ca, Mg and La addition, respectively. The type of oxide inclusions in final quenched samples was the same as that in molten steel. However, unlike these in molten steel, inclusions were Ca–Al–Ti–O + MnS, Ca–Mg–Al–Ti–O + MnS and La–Ca–Mg–Al–Ti–O + MnS in Mg-free, Mg-containing and La-containing samples, respectively. The inclusions distributed dispersedly in the La-containing sample. In addition, the average size of the inclusions in the La-containing sample was the smallest while the number density of inclusions was the highest. The size of effective inclusions (nucleus of AF formation) was mainly in the range of 1  to 3 μm. And the content of ferrite side plates (FSP) decreased, while the percentage of acicular ferrite (AF) increased by 16.2% due to the increase in the number of effective inclusions in the La-containing sample in this study.
Research Article
Flotation kinetics performance of different coal size fractions with nanobubbles
Hua Han, An Liu, Cai-li Wang, Run-quan Yang, Shuai Li, and Huai-fa Wang
Available online 6 March 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2280-8
[Abstract](270) [PDF 957KB](26)
The flotation kinetics of different size fractions of conventional and nanobubbles (NBs) flotation were compared to investigate the effect of NBs on flotation performance of various coal particle size. Six flotation kinetics models were selected to fit the flotation data and NBs were observed on the hydrophobic surface under hydrodynamic cavitation by atomic force microscope (AFM) scanning. The flotation results indicate that the best flotation performance of size fraction at -0.125+0.074 mm can be obtained either in conventional or NBs flotation, NBs increase the combustible recovery of almost all of the size fractions, but increase the product ash content of -0.25-0.074 mm and reduce the product ash content of -0.045 mm at the same time. The first-order models can both be used to fit the flotation data in conventional and NBs flotation, the classical first-order model is the most suitable one. NBs have an obvious enhancement of flotation rate on coarse size fraction (-0.5+0.25 mm) but decrease the flotation rate of the medium size (-0.25+0.074 mm), the improvement of flotation speed on fine coal particles (-0.074 mm) is probably the reason of the better flotation performance of raw sample flotation.
Research Article
Surface nanobubbles on hydrophobic surface and its implication to flotation
Chen-wei Li, Dan-long Li, Xin Li, Ming Xu, and Hai-jun Zhang
Available online 5 March 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2279-1
[Abstract](277) [PDF 1804KB](24)
Nanobubbles play a potential role in the application of fine particles flotation. In this work, the identification of nanoentities was identified with contact mode atomic force microscope (AFM). Meanwhile, the influence of setpoint ratio and amplitude of cantilever and the responses of the formed surface nanobubbles to the fluctuations of pH, salt concentrations, and surfactant concentrations in the slurry, were studied respectively. Nanobubbles were found on highly oriented pyrolytic graphite (HOPG) surface as HOPG was immersed in deionized water in the ambient temperature. The coalescence of nanobubbles occurred under contact mode, which provides strong evidence supporting the gaseous nature of these nanostructures on HOPG. The measuring height of surface nanobubbles decreased with the setpoint ratio (Asetpoint/Afree). The change in concentrations of pH and MIBC shows a negligible influence on lateral size and height of the preexisting surface nanobubbles. The addition of LiCl results in a negligible change in lateral size but an obvious change in height of surface nanobubbles. The present results are expected to provide a valuable reference to understand the properties of surface nanobubbles and design nanobubbles-assisted flotation processes.
Invited Review
Solid electrolyte-electrode interface based on buffer therapy in solid-state lithium batteries
Lei-ying Wang, Li-fan Wang, Rui Wang, Rui Xu, Chun Zhan, Woochul Yang, and Gui-cheng Liu
Available online 4 March 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2278-2
[Abstract](294) [PDF 1365KB](20)
In the past few years, the all-solid lithium battery has attracted worldwide attentions, the ionic conductivity of some all-solid lithium-ion batteries has reached 10-3~10-2 S/cm, indicating that the transport of lithium ions in solid electrolytes is no longer a major problem. However, some interface issues become research hotspots. Examples of these interfacial issues include the electrochemical decomposition reaction at the electrode-electrolyte interface; the low effective contact area between the solid electrolyte and the electrode etc. In order to solve the issues, researchers have pursued many different approaches. The addition of a buffer layer between the electrode and the solid electrolyte has been at the center of this endeavor. In this review paper, we provide a systematic summarization of the problems on the electrode-solid electrolyte interface and detailed reflection on the latest works of buffer-based therapies, and the review will end with a personal perspective on the improvement of buffer-based therapies.
Research Article
Hot compressive deformation of eutectic Al-17at% Cu alloy on the interface of the Cu-Al composite plate produced by horizontal continuous casting
Jun Wang, Fan Zhao, Guo-liang Xie, Jia-xuan Xu, and Xin-hua Liu
Available online 3 March 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2276-4
[Abstract](140) [PDF 2138KB](9)
On the interface of the Cu-Al composite plate from horizontal continuous casting, the eutectic tissue layer thickness accounts for more than 90% of the total interface thickness, and the deformation in rolling forming plays an important role in the quality of the composite plate. The eutectic tissue material on the interface of the Cu-Al composite plate was prepared by changing the cooling rate of ingot solidification and the deformation in hot compression was investigated. The results show that deformation temperature is over 300 ℃, the softening effect of dynamic recrystallization of α-Al is greater than the hardening effect, and uniform plastic deformation of eutectic tissue is caused. The constitutive equation of flow stress in the eutectic tissue layer was established by Arrhenius hyperbolic-sine mathematics model, providing a reliable theoretical basis for the deformation of the Cu-Al composite plate.
Research Article
Effect of an external magnetic field on improved electroslag remelting cladding process
Zhi-wen Hou, Yan-wu Dong, Zhou-hua Jiang, Zhi-hao Hu, Li-meng Liu, and Kun-jie Tian
Available online 3 March 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2277-3
[Abstract](137) [PDF 1357KB](8)
Obtaining a uniform interface temperature field plays a crucial role in the interface bonding quality of bimetal compound rolls. Therefore, in this study, an improved electroslag remelting cladding (ESRC) process using external magnetic field is proposed to improve the uniformity of the interface temperature of compound rolls. The improved ESRC comprises a conventional ESRC circuit and an external coil circuit. A comprehensive 3D model, including multi-physics fields is solved to study the effect of external magnetic field on the multi-physics fields and interface temperature uniformity. The simulated results demonstrate that the non-uniform Joule heat and flow fields cause a non-uniform interface temperature in the conventional ESRC. As for the improved ESRC, the magnetic flux density (Bcoil) along the z-axis is produced by an anticlockwise current of the external coil. The rotating Lorentz force is generated from the interaction between the radial current and axial Bcoil. Therefore, the slag pool flows clockwise, which enhances circumferential effective thermal conductivity. As a result, the uniformity of the temperature field and interface temperature improve. In addition, the magnetic flux density and rotational speed of the simulated results are in good agreement with those of the experimental results, which verifies the accuracy of the improved ESRC model. Therefore, an improved ESRC is efficient for industrial production of the compound roll with a uniform interface bonding quality.
Research Article
MnO2/carbon nanocomposite based on silkworm excrement for high-performance supercapacitors
Pian Zhang, Yun-hao Wu, Hao-ran Sun, Jia-qi Zhao, Zhi-ming Cheng, and Xiao-hong Kang
Available online 27 February 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2272-8
[Abstract](251) [PDF 1354KB](14)
MnO2/biomass carbon nanocomposite was synthesized by a facile hydrothermal reaction. Silkworm excrement acted as a carbon precursor, which was activated by ZnCl2 and FeCl3 combining chemical agents under Ar atmosphere. The thin and flower-like MnO2 nanowires were in situ anchored on the surface of biomass carbon, in which biomass carbon not only offered the high conductivity and good structural stability but also relieved the large volume expansion during the charge/discharge process. The obtained MnO2/biomass carbon nanocomposite electrode exhibited a high specific capacitance (238 F g-1 at 0.5 A g-1) and a superior cycling stability with only 7% degradation after 2000 cycles. The good electrochemical performance is accredited to the high specific surface area, multi-level hierarchical structure, and good conductivity. This study proposes a promising method to make use of biological waste and broadens MnO2 based electrode materials application for next-generation energy storage and conversion devices.
Research Article
Experimental and numerical study on immobilization and leaching characteristics of fluoride from phosphogypsum based cemented paste backfill
Qiu-song Chen, Shi-yuan Sun, Yi-kai Liu, Chong-chong Qi, Hui-bo Zhou, and Qin-li Zhang
Available online 27 February 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2274-6
[Abstract](881) [PDF 1732KB](59)
Phosphogypsum (PG) is the typical by-product of phosphoric acid and phosphate fertilizers by acid digestion. The application of cemented paste backfill was feasibly investigated for the remediation of PG. The present study evaluated the fluorine immobilization mechanisms and attempted to construct a related thermodynamic and geochemical modeling to describe the stabilization performance. Physico-chemical and mineralogical analyses were performed on PG and hardened PCPB. The correlated macro and microstructural properties were obtained from analyzing the combination of unconfined compressive strength and SEM-EDS imaging. Acid/base dependent leaching tests were performed to ascertain the fluoride leachability. Additionally, GEMS and Phreeqc were applied in this study as tools to characterize the PCPB hydration and deduce its geochemical characteristics. The results proved that multiple factors are involved in fluorine stabilization, among which the C-S-H gel was found to be associated with retention. Besides, the concentration of acid/base highlights in regulating the leaching behavior. Although the quantitative comparison with the experimental data shows further modification should be introduced into the simulation before being used as a predictive implement to determine PG management options, the modeling enabled the identification of the impurity phases controlling the stability and leachability.
Research Article
Effect of extrusion process on microstructure and mechanical and corrosion properties of biodegradable Mg-5Zn-1.5Y magnesium alloy
Hassan Jafari, Amir Houshang Mojiri Tehrani, and Mahsa Heydari
Available online 27 February 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2275-5
[Abstract](272) [PDF 1743KB](18)
The effect of extrusion temperature and ratio on microstructure, hardness, compression, and corrosion behavior of Mg-5Zn-1.5Y alloy were analyzed. The microstructural observations revealed that the cast alloy consists of α-Mg grains, and Mg3Zn6Y and Mg3Zn3Y2 intermetallic compounds, mostly located on the α-Mg grain boundaries. Extruded alloy at higher temperatures showed coarser grain microstructures, whereas those extruded at higher ratios contained finer ones, although more DRXed grains with lower intermetallics were measured at both conditions. Combined conditions of the lower temperature (340°C) and higher ratio (1:11.5) provided higher compressive strengths. However, no significant hardness improvement was achieved. The extrusion process could decrease the corrosion rate of the cast alloy in simulated body fluid for over 80% due to primarily the refined microstructure. The extrusion temperature showed a more pronounced effect on corrosion resistance compared to the extrusion ratio, and the higher the extrusion temperature, the higher the corrosion resistance.
Research Article
Enhanced electrochemical performance of Si/C electrode through surface modification using SrF2 particle
Jun Yang, Yuan-hua Lin, Bing-shu Guo, Ming-shan Wang, Jun-chen Chen, Zhi-yuan Ma, Yun Huang, and Xing Li
Available online 25 February 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2270-x
[Abstract](224) [PDF 1226KB](14)
The silicon-based materials have a high theoretical specific capacity and is one of the best anode for the next generation of advanced lithium-ion batteries (LIBs). However, it is difficult for the silicon-based anode to form a stable solid-state interphase (SEI) during Li alloy/de-alloy process due to the large volume change (up to 300%) between silicon and Li4.4Si, which seriously limits the cycle life of the LIBs. Herein, we use strontium fluoride (SrF2) particle to coat the silicon-carbon (Si/C) electrode (SrF2@Si/C) to help forming a stable and high mechanical strength SEI by spontaneously embedding the SrF2 particle into SEI. Meanwhile the SEI can inhibit the volume expansion of the silicon-carbon anode during the cycle. The electrochemical test results show that the cycle performance and the ionic conductivity of the SrF2@Si/C anode has been significantly improved. The X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) analysis reveals that there are fewer electrolyte decomposition products formed on the surface of the SrF2@Si/C anode. This study provides a facile approach to overcome the problems of Si/C electrode during the electrochemical cycling, which will be beneficial to the industrial application of silicon-based anode materials.
Research Article
Role of trace additions of Ca and Sn in improving the corrosion resistance of Mg-3Al-1Zn alloy
Pan-pan Wang, Hai-tao Jiang, Yu-jiao Wang, Yun Zhang, Shi-wei Tian, Ye-fei Zhang, and Zhi-ming Cao
Available online 18 February 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2268-4
[Abstract](215) [PDF 1276KB](10)
The limited wide applicability of commercial Mg alloys is mainly attributed to the poor corrosion resistance. Addition of alloying elements is the simplest and effective method to improve the corrosion properties. Based on the low-cost alloy composition design, the corrosion behavior of commercial Mg-3Al-Zn (AZ31) alloy bearing minor Ca or Sn element was characterized by scanning Kelvin probe force microscopy, hydrogen evolution, electrochemical measurements and corrosion morphology analysis. Results revealed that the potential difference of Al2Ca/α-Mg and Mg2Sn/α-Mg was ∼230±19 mV and ∼80±6 mV, much lower than that of Al8Mn5/α-Mg (∼430±31 mV) in AZ31 alloy, which illustrated that AZ31-0.2Sn alloy performed the best corrosion resistance, followed by AZ31-0.2Ca, while AZ31 alloy exihited the worst corrosion resistance. Moreover, Sn dissolved into matrix obviously increased the potential of α-Mg and participated in the formation of dense SnO2 film at the interface of matrix, while Ca element was enriched in the corrosion product layer, resulting in the corrosion product layer of AZ31-0.2Ca/Sn alloys more compact, stable and protective than AZ31 alloy. Therefore, AZ31 alloy bearing 0.2wt% Ca or Sn element exhibited excellent balanced properties, which is potential to be applied in commercial more comprehensively.
Research Article
A chain-like compound of Si@CNTs nanostructure and MOF-derived porous carbon as anode for Li-ion batteries
Ying-jun Qiao, Huan Zhang, Yu-xin Hu, Wan-peng Li, Wen-jing Liu, Hui-ming Shang, Mei-zhen Qu, Gong-chang Peng, and Zheng-wei Xie
Available online 6 February 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2266-6
[Abstract](281) [PDF 1589KB](17)
Silicon anodes are considered to have great prospects, but many of their defects still need to be improved. To prepare hybrid materials based on porous carbon is one of the effective ways to alleviate the adverse impact resulting from the volume change and the inferior electronic conductivity of silicon electrode. Herein, a chain-like carbon cluster structure is prepared, in which MOF-derived porous carbon acts as a shell structure to integrally encapsulate Si nanoparticles, and CNTs play a role in connecting carbon shells. Based on the exclusive structure, the carbon shell can cushion the volume expansion more effectively and CNTs can improve overall stability and conductivity. The resulted composite reveals excellent rate capacity and enhanced cycling stability, which in particular achieve a capacity of 732 mAh g-1 at 2 A g-1 and shows a reservation rate of 72.3% after cycling 100 times at 1 A g-1.
Research Article
Novel confinement combustion method to nanosized WC/C for efficient electrocatalytic oxygen reduction
Peng-qi Chen, Huan Wu, Yun-xiao Tai, Yu-fei Gao, Jia-yu Chen, and Ji-gui Cheng
Available online 4 February 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2265-7
[Abstract](258) [PDF 993KB](9)
Nanosized WC/C catalyst was synthesized via a novel ultra-rapid confinement combustion synthesis method. Result showed that the amount of activated carbon (AC) played an important role in the morphology and structure controlling of both the precursor and the final powder. Due to the confinement of the pore structure and large specific surface area of AC, the WC particles synthesized inside the pores of AC had the size of 10-20 nm. When applied to oxygen reduction performance, the half-wave potential was -0.24 V and the electron transfer number was 3.45, which meant that the main reaction process is the transfer of four electrons. The detailed electrocatalytic performance and the underlying mechanism were investigated in this work. Our study provides a novel approach for the design of new composition and structure catalysts which has a certain significance for promoting the commercialization of fuel cells.
Research Article
The modulation of discharge plateau of benzoquinone for sodium-ion batteries
Feng-hua Chen, Yi-wen Wu, Huan-hong Zhang, Zhan-tu Long, Xiao-xin Lin, Ming-zhe Chen, Qing Chen, Yi-fan Luo, Shu-Lei Chou, and Rong-hua Zeng
Available online 2 February 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2261-y
[Abstract](370) [PDF 1246KB](25)
P-Benzoquinone (BQ) is a promising candidate for next generation sodium ion batteries (SIBs) owing to its high theoretical specific capacity, good reaction reversibility and high resource availability. However, BQ face many challenges in practical application, such as low discharge plateau (~2.7 V) as cathode material or high discharge plateau as anode material compared with inorganic materials for SIBs, and high solubility in organic electrolytes, resulting in low power density and energy density. Here, tetrahydroxybenzoquinone tetrasodium salt (Na4C6O6) is synthesized through a simple neutralization reaction at low temperature. The four -ONa electron donating groups introduced on structure of BQ lower greatly the discharge plateau from ~2.70 V to ~1.26 V with the decrease value of over 1.4 V, which can make BQ change from cathode to anode material for SIBs. At the same time, the addition of four -ONa hydrophilic groups inhibit effectively the dissolution of BQ in the organic electrolyte a certain extent. As a result, Na4C6O6 as anode displays a moderate discharge capacity and cycling performance at an average work voltage of ~1.26 V versus Na/Na+. When evaluated as a Na-ion full cell (NIFC), a Na3V2(PO4)3 || Na4C6O6 NIFC reveals a moderate discharge capacity and an average discharge plateau of ~1.4 V. This research offers a new molecular structure design strategy to reduce the discharge plateau and restrain the dissolution of organic electrode materials simultaneously.
Research Article
Effects of Nd on microstructure and mechanical properties of as-cast Mg-12Gd-2Zn-xNd-0.4Zr alloys with stacking faults
Li-xin Hong, Rong-xiang Wang, and Xiao-bo Zhang
Available online 2 February 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2264-8
[Abstract](223) [PDF 1451KB](5)
In order to study the effects of Nd addition on microstructure and mechanical properties of Mg-Gd-Zn-Zr alloys, the microstructure and mechanical properties of the as-cast Mg-12Gd-2Zn-xNd-0.4Zr (x = 0, 0.5, and 1 wt%) alloys were investigated by using optical microscope, scanning electron microscope, X-ray diffractometer, nano indentation tester, microhardness tester, and tensile testing machine. The results show that the microstructures mainly consist of α-Mg matrix, eutectic phase and stacking faults. The addition of Nd plays a significant role in grain refinement and uniform microstructure. The tensile yield strength and microhardness increase but the compression yield strength decreases with increasing Nd addition, leading to weakening tension-compression yield asymmetry in reverse of the Mg-12Gd-2Zn-xNd-0.4Zr alloys. The highest ultimate tensile strength (194 MPa) and ultimate compression strength (397 MPa) are obtained with 1 wt% Nd addition of the alloy.
Research Article
Blast furnace ironmaking process with super high TiO2 in the slag: Density and surface tension of the slag
Zheng-de Pang, Yu-yang Jiang, Jia-wei Ling, Xue-wei Lv, and Zhi-ming Yan
Available online 2 February 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2262-x
[Abstract](261) [PDF 886KB](23)
Considering high novelty and potential on ultra–high (>80%) or full V–Ti–Magnetite ore under blast furnace smelting, we are conducting a series of works on physics character of high TiO2 bearing blast furnace slag (BFS) for slag optimization. This work discussed the density and surface tension of high TiO2 bearing BFS using the Archimedean principle and the maximum bubble pressure method, respectively. The influence of TiO2 content and MgO/CaO (mass ratio) on the density and surface tension of CaO–SiO2–TiO2–MgO–Al2O3 slags were investigated. Results indicated that the density of slags decreased as increasing TiO2 content from 20 to 30 wt%, but it increased slightly as increasing MgO/CaO from 0.32 to 0.73. In view of silicate network structure, the density and the degree of polymerization (DOP) of network structure have a consistent trend. The addition of TiO2 reduces (Q3)2/(Q2) ratio, decreases DOP, which leads to the decrease of slag density. The surface tension of CaO–SiO2–TiO2–MgO–Al2O3 slags decreased dramatically as increasing TiO2 content from 20 to 30 wt%. Conversely, it increased as increasing MgO/CaO from 0.32 to 0.73. Furthermore, the iso–surface tension lines were obtained under 1723K using the Tanaka developed model in view of Butler formula. It may be useful for slag optimization of ultra–high proportion (>80%) or even full V–Ti–Magnetite ore under BF smelting.
Research Article
Experimental investigation on the intermetallic growth behavior during post deformation annealing in multilayer Ti/Al/Nb composite interfaces
Roya Jafari and Beitallah Eghbali
Available online 2 February 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2263-9
[Abstract](256) [PDF 1498KB](3)
In the present research, the tri-metal Ti-Al-Nb composites were processed through three procedures: hot pressing, rolling, and hot pressing, followed by subsequent rolling. The fabricated composites were then subjected to annealing at 600, 625, and 650 ºC temperatures at different times. Microstructure observation at the interfaces reveals that the increase in plastic deformation strain significantly affects TiAl3 intermetallic layers’ evolution and accelerates the layers’ growth. On the contrary, the amount of applied strain does not significantly affect the evolution of the NbAl3 intermetallic layer thickness. It was also found that Al and Ti atoms’ diffusion has occurred throughout the TiAl3 layer, but only Al atoms diffuse through the NbAl3 layer. The slow growth rate of the NbAl3 intermetallic layer is due to the lack of diffusion of Nb atoms and the high activation energy of Al atoms’ reaction with Nb atoms.
Research Article
Discharge properties of Mg-Sn-Y alloys as anodes for Mg-air batteries
Hua-bao Yang, Liang Wu, Bin Jiang, Bin Lei, Ming Yuan, Hong-mei Xie, Andrej Atrens, Jiang-feng Song, Guang-sheng Huang, and Fu-sheng Pan
Available online 26 January 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2258-6
[Abstract](398) [PDF 1766KB](14)
Mg-Sn-Y alloys with different Sn contents (wt%) were assessed as anode candidates for Mg-air batteries. The relationship between microstructure (including the second phase, grain size, and texture) and discharge properties of the Mg-Sn-Y alloys was examined using microstructure observation, electrochemical measurements, and galvanostatic discharge tests. The Mg-0.7Sn-1.4Y alloy had a high steady discharge voltage of 1.5225 V and a high anodic efficiency of 46.6% at 2.5 mA·cm-2. These good properties were related to its microstructure: small grain size of 3.8 μm, uniform distribution of small second phase particles of 0.6 μm, and a high content (vol%) of (11-20)/(10-10) orientated grains. The Scanning Kelvin Probe Force Microscopy (SKPFM) indicated that the Sn3Y5 and MgSnY phases were effective cathodes causing micro-galvanic corrosion which promoted the dissolution of Mg matrix during the discharge process.
Invited Review
A review of the synthesis and application of zeolites from coal-based solid wastes
Xiao-yu Zhang, Chun-quan Li, Shui-lin Zheng, Yong-hao Di, and Zhi-ming Sun
Available online 22 January 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2256-8
[Abstract](354) [PDF 870KB](15)
Zeolite derived from coal-based solid wastes (coal gangue and coal fly ash) not only can cope with the environmental problems caused by coal-based solid wastes but also achieve their valuable utilization. In this paper, the physicochemical properties of coal gangue and coal fly ash were introduced. Then the mechanism and application characteristics of the pretreatment processes for zeolite synthesis from coal-based solid wastes were introduced as well. After that, the synthesis processes of coal-based solid waste zeolite and their merits and demerits were summarized in detail. Furthermore, the application characteristics of various coal-based solid waste zeolites and their common application fields were also illustrated. By the end of this review, we propose that alkaline fusion-assisted supercritical hydrothermal crystallization may be an efficient method for synthesizing coal-based solid waste zeolites. Besides, more attention should be paid to the recycling of alkaline waste liquid and the application of coal-based solid waste zeolites in the field of volatile organic compounds adsorption removal.
Research Article
Analysis of local microstructure and strengthening mechanisms in adjustable-gap bobbin tool friction stir welds of Al-Mg
Dong Wu, Wen-ya Li, Qiang Chu, Yang-fan Zou, Xi-chang Liu, and Yan-jun Gao
Available online 22 January 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2254-x
[Abstract](310) [PDF 1218KB](10)
The bobbin tool friction stir welding process was used to join 6 mm thick 5A06 aluminum alloy plates. Optical microscope was used to characterize the microstructure. The electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD) identified the effect of non-homogeneous microstructure on the tensile properties. It was observed that the grain size in the top of the stir zone (SZ) is smaller than that in the centre region. The lowest ratio of recrystallization and density of the geometrically-necessary dislocations (GNDs) in the SZ was found in the middle near the thermo-mechanically affected zone (TMAZ) being 22% and 1.15×10-13 m-2, respectively. The texture strength of the heat-affected zone (HAZ) is the largest, followed by that in the SZ, with the lowest being in the TMAZ. There were additional interfaces developed which contributed to the strengthening mechanism, and their effect on tensile strength was analysed. The tensile tests identified the weakest part in the joint at the interfaces, and the specific reduction value is about 93MPa.
Research Article
Effects of heat treatments on microstructures of TiAl alloys
Wen Yu, Jian-xin Zhou, Ya-jun Yin, Zhi-xin Tu, Xin Feng, Hai Nan, Jun-pin Lin, and Xian-fei Ding
Available online 16 January 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2252-z
[Abstract](386) [PDF 1841KB](21)
This study aims to investigate the effects of heat treatments on microstructures of γ-TiAl alloys. Two Ti-47Al-2Cr-2Nb alloy ingots were manufactured by casting method and then heat treated in two types of heat treatments. Their microstructures were studied by both optical and scanning electron microscopies. The chemical compositions of two ingots were determined. The ingot with lower Al content only obtains lamellar structures while the one higher in Al content obtains nearly lamellar and duplex structures after heat treatment within 1270°C to 1185°C. A small amount of B2 phase is found to be precipitated in both as-cast and heat-treated microstructures. They are distributed at grain boundaries when holding at a higher temperature, such as 1260°C. However, B2 phase is precipitated at grain boundaries and in colony interiors simultaneously after heat treatments happened at 1185°C. Furthermore, the effects of heat treatments on grain refinement and other microstructural parameters are discussed.
Research Article
Combining the 8-hydroxyquinoline intercalated layered double hydroxide film and sol-gel coating for active corrosion protection of the magnesium alloy
Yahya Jafari Tarzanagh, Davod Seifzadeh, and Roghaye Samadianfard
Available online 16 January 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2251-0
[Abstract](318) [PDF 1853KB](8)
The 8-Hydroxyquinoline (8-HQ) intercalated Layered Double Hydroxides (LDH) film as underlayer and sol-gel layer was combined for active corrosion protection of the AM60B magnesium alloy. The LDH, LDH/sol-gel, and LDH@HQ/sol-gel coatings were analyzed using the SEM, FESEM, EDX, XRD, AFM, and EIS methods. The SEM images showed that the surface was entirely coated by the LDH film composed of vertically-grown nanosheets. The same morphology was observed for the LDH/sol-gel and LDH@HQ/sol-gel coatings. Also, almost the same topography was observed for both composite coatings except that the LDH@HQ/sol-gel coating had relatively higher surface roughness. Although the LDH film had the same impedance behavior as the alloy sample in 3.5 wt. % NaCl solution, its corrosion resistance was much higher, which could be due to its barrier properties as well as to the trapping of the chloride ions. Similar to the LDH film, the corrosion resistance of the LDH/sol-gel composite diminished with increasing the exposure time. However, its values were much higher than that of the LDH film, which was mainly related to the sealing of the solution pathways. The LDH@HQ/sol-gel composite showed much better anti-corrosion properties than the LDH/sol-gel coating due to the adsorption of the 8-HQ on the damaged areas through the complexation.
Research Article
Three-dimensional antimony sulfide anode with carbon nanotube interphase modified for lithium-ion batteries
Qi Wang, Yue-yong Du, Yan-qing Lai, Fang-yang Liu, Liang-xing Jiang, and Ming Jia
Available online 13 January 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2249-7
[Abstract](429) [PDF 841KB](24)
Antimony sulfide (Sb2S3) is a promising anode for lithium-ion batteries due to its high capacity and vast reserves. However, the low electronic conductivity and severe volume change during cycling hinder its commercialization. Herein our work, a 3D Sb2S3 thin film anode was fabricated via a simple vapor transport deposition system by using natural stibnite as raw material and stainless steel fiber-foil (SSF) as 3D current collector, and a carbon nanotube interphase was introduced onto the film surface (3D Sb2S3@CNT) by a simple dropping-heating process to promote the electrochemical performances. This 3D structure can greatly improve the initial coulombic efficiency to a record of 86.6% and high reversible rate capacity of 760.8 mAh g-1 at 10C. With CNT interphase modified, the Sb2S3 anode cycled extremely stable with high capacity retention of 94.7% after 160 cycles. This work sheds light on the economical preparation and performance optimization of Sb2S3-based anodes.
Research Article
Evolution laws of microstructures and mechanical properties during heat treatments for near-α high temperature titanium alloys
Xiao-zhao Ma, Zhi-lei Xiang, Tao Li, Yi-lan Chen, Ying-ying Liu, Zi-yong Chen, and Qun Shu
Available online 6 January 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2248-8
[Abstract](318) [PDF 1799KB](6)
Evolution laws of microstructures, mechanical properties and fractographs after different solution temperatures were investigated through various analyses methods. With the increasing solution temperatures, contents of primary α phase decreased, and contents of transformed β structures increased. Lamellar α grains dominated the characteristics of transformed β structures, and widths of secondary α lamellas increased monotonously. For as-forged alloy, large silicides with equiaxed and rod-like morphologies, and nano-scale silicides were found. Silicides with large sizes might be (Ti, Zr, Nb)5Si3 and (Ti, Zr, Nb)6Si3. Rod-like silicides with small sizes precipitated in retained β phase, exhibiting near 45° angles with α/β grain boundaries. Retained β phases in as-heat treated alloys were incontinuous. 980STA exhibited excellent combinations of room temperature (RT) and 650℃ mechanical properties. Characteristics of fracture surfaces largely depended on the evolutions of microstructures. Meanwhile, silicides promoted the formation of mico-voids.
Research Article
Carbon dots modified silicon nanoparticle for lithium ion batteries
Qiao-kun Du, Qing-xia Wu, Hong-xun Wang, Xiang-juan Meng, Ze-kai Ji, Shu Zhao, Wei-wei Zhu, Chuang Liu, Min Ling, and Cheng-du Liang
Available online 1 January 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2247-1
[Abstract](525) [PDF 1112KB](32)
A new idea is proposed to enhance the interaction between the silicon (Si) particles and binders by using carbon dots (CDs) to functionalize Si particles. Firstly, CDs rich in polar groups were synthesized by a simple hydrothermal method. Then, CDs were loaded on the surface of Si particles by impregnation method to obtain the functionalized Si particles (Si/CDs). Fourier transform infrared reflection (FTIR), X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and High-resolution transmission electron microscope (HRTEM) were used to study the phases and microstructures of Si/CDs. Si/CDs were used as the active material of anode for electrochemical performance experiments. Cyclic voltammetry (CV), electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS), and constant current charge and discharge experiment were used to study the electrochemical performance of Si/CDs electrodes. The electrodes prepared by Si/CDs have good mechanical structure stability and electrochemical performance. After 150 cycles at 0.2 C, the capacity retention rate of Si/CDs electrode is 64.0%, which is twice as much as the pure Si electrode at the same test conditions.
Research Article
Synthesis of amino functionalized diatomite by glycine and amino silane for high-efficient removal of indoor formaldehyde
Yong-hao Di, Fang Yuan, Xiao-tian Ning, Hong-wei Jia, Yang-yu Liu, Xiang-wei Zhang, Chun-quan Li, Shui-lin Zheng, and Zhi-ming Sun
Available online 29 December 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2245-3
[Abstract](378) [PDF 1105KB](18)
In order to remove indoor formaldehyde (HCHO) efficiently and cheaply, two kinds of novel amino functionalized diatomite (DE) modified by 3-aminopropyltriethoxysilane (APTS) and glycine (GLY) (i.e. APTS/DE and GLY/DE) were successfully synthesized by wetting chemical method. First, the optimal preparation conditions of the two kinds of amino modified diatomite were determined, and then their microstructure and morphologies were characterized and analyzed. For comparation, a series of batch HCHO adsorption experiments of the two kinds of amino modified diatomite were conducted. According to the experimental results, the pseudo-second-order kinetic model and the Langmuir isotherm model could well describe the adsorption processes, and the maximum adsorption capacity of APTS/DE and GLY/DE prepared under the optimized conditions at 20 ℃ were 5.83 and 1.14 mg·g-1, respectively. In addition, the thermodynamic parameters indicated that the adsorption process is a spontaneous and exothermic process. Overall, the abundant amine groups grafting on the surface of diatomite was derived from Schiff base reaction, which is essential for high-efficient adsorption performance toward HCHO.
Research Article
Mechanical properties of Al-15Mg2Si composites prepared under different solidification cooling rates
Elahe Safary, Reza Taghiabadi, and Mohammad Hosein Ghoncheh
Available online 29 December 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2244-4
[Abstract](395) [PDF 1571KB](17)
The effect of different cooling rates (2.7, 5.5, 17.1, and 57.5 °C/s) on the solidification parameters, microstructure, and mechanical properties of Al-15Mg2Si composites was studied. The results showed that, high cooling rate refined the Mg2Si particles and changed their morphology to the more compacted forms with less microcracking tendency The average radius and fraction of primary Mg2Si particles decreased from 20 µm and 13.5% to about 10 µm and 7.3%, respectively, as the cooling rate increased from 2.7 °C/s to 57.5 °C/s. Increasing the cooling rate also improved the distribution of microconstituents, decreased the size of grains, and reduced the volume fraction of micropores. The mechanical properties results revealed that augmenting the cooling rate from 2.7 °C/s to about 57.5 °C/s increased the hardness and quality index by 25% and 245%, respectively. High cooling rate also changed the fracture mechanism from brittle dominated to a high-energy ductile mode comprising of extensive dimpled zones.
Research Article
Reciprocating sliding wear properties of sintered Al-B4C composites
Mahmut Can ŞENEL, Yusuf Kanca, and Mevlüt Gürbüz
Available online 29 December 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2243-5
[Abstract](360) [PDF 1698KB](21)
Pure aluminum and boron carbide reinforced aluminum matrix composites with various content (1, 6, 15, 30 wt.%B4C) were fabricated using the powder metallurgy technique. The influence of boron carbide amount on the mechanical and tribological behavior of sintered Al-B4C was examined. The highest density (~2.54 g/cm3), lowest porosity (4%), maximum Vickers hardness (~75 HV), as well as, lowest weight loss (0.4 mg), and lowest specific wear rate (0.00042 mm3/Nm) under a 7 N load were obtained with Al-30B4C composites. Enhancement of 167% in hardness, a decrease of 75.8% in weight loss, and a decrease of 76.7% in specific wear rate under an applied load of 7 N were determined when compared with pure aluminum. Similarly, the SEM images of the worn surface revealed that the narrowest wear grove (0.85 mm) at a load of 7 N was detected at Al-B4C composite and the main wear mechanism was observed as an abrasive wear mechanism. According to the friction analysis, the coefficient of friction between surfaces increased with increasing boron carbide content and decreasing the applied load. In conclusion, boron carbide is an effective reinforcement material in terms of tribological and mechanical performance of Al-B4C composites.
Research Article
Mechanical properties and energy evolution of jointed rock specimens containing an opening under uniaxial loading
Peng Li, Mei-feng Cai, Pei-tao Wang, Qi-feng Guo, Sheng-jun Miao, and Fen-hua Ren
Available online 12 December 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2237-3
[Abstract](393) [PDF 866KB](5)
For investigating the impact of an opening and joints with different inclination angles on the mechanical response behavior, the energy evolution characteristics and distribution law of granite specimens, uniaxial loading tests were performed on the parallel jointed rock samples with an opening. The results indicate that there is a trend of first decreasing and then increasing of the strength and deformation parameters with the increase of inclination angle, reaching the minimum values when the inclination angle was 45°. The evolution curves of the elastic strain energy and dissipated energy with strain of the samples show the characteristics of step-like gradual mutation. The peak total energy, elastic strain energy, dissipated energy, and total input energy during the failure of the samples showed significant nonlinear characteristics with increasing inclination angle. The opening and joints as well as the change of the inclination angle had significant influences on the proportion of the elastic strain energy of the samples prior to the peak, resulting in the difference of the distribution law of input energy. Moreover, the energy mechanism of the sample failure was discussed, and the energy release was the internal cause of the sudden destruction of the entire rock mass.
Invited Review
Practical development and challenges of garnet-structured Li7La3Zr2O12 electrolytes for all solid-state lithium-ion battery—A review
Zao-hong Zhang, Tao Wei, Jia-hao Lu, Qi-ming Xiong, Yue-han Ji, Zong-yuan Zhu, and Liu-ting Zhang
Available online 12 December 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2239-1
[Abstract](995) [PDF 1371KB](56)
In order to achieve higher safety and higher energy density lithium-ion batteries, all solid-state lithium-ion batteries (ASSLIBs) have been widely studied. Recently, some review and experimental papers have focused on how to improve the ionic conductivity, stabilize the electrochemical performance and enhance the interface compatibility between the electrodes and the solid-state electrolytes (SSEs), including oxides, sulfides, composite electrolytes, gel electrolytes and so on. Among these SSEs, the garnet-structured Li7La3Zr2O12 (LLZO) is regarded as one of the most expected candidates for SSEs. However, numbers of challenges also exist for garnet-structured LLZO-based electrolytes, such as low ionic conductivity, indefinite cubic phase, poor interfacial compatibility with anodes/cathodes and so on, which urges us to explore effective solutions. Herein, we will review recent developments on garnet-structured LLZO and provide comprehensive insights to guide the development of garnet-structured LLZO electrolytes in this work. We will not only systematically and comprehensively discuss the following content, including preparation, element doping, the structure, stability, polymer-ceramic composite electrolytes (PCCEs) and interface improvement of LLZO, but also give a forward-looking perspective. We hope that it would provide meaningful guidance for the advanced solid garnet-electrolytes, and we think that the commercialization of ASSLIBs will be achieved in the near future.
Research Article
Interfacial bonding characteristics and mechanical properties of H68/AZ31B clad plate
Ting-ting Zhang, Wen-xian Wang, Jie Zhang, and Zhi-feng Yan
Available online 12 December 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2240-8
[Abstract](321) [PDF 2205KB](1)
Interfacial bonding, microstructures and mechanical properties of an explosively-welded H68/AZ31B clad plate were systematically studied. It was found that the bonding interface demonstrated a “like-wavy” structure containing three typical zones/layers: 1) diffusion layer adjacent to the H68 brass plate; 2) solidification layer of melted metals at the interface; and 3) a layer at the side of AZ31B alloy which experienced severe deformation. Mixed copper, CuZn2 and α-Mg phases were observed in the melted-solidification layer. Regular polygonal grains with twins were found at the H68 alloy side while fine equiaxed grains due to the recrystallization were found at the AZ31B alloy side near the interface. Nanoindentation results revealed the formation of brittle intermetallic CuZn2 phases at the bonding interface. The interface was bonded well through metallurgical reactions owing to the diffusion of Cu, Zn and Mg atoms across the interface and the metallurgic reaction of partially melted H68 and AZ31B alloys.
Invited Review
Review and prospect of bioleaching in the Chinese mining industry
Sheng-hua Yin, Wei Chen, Xing-le Fan, Jia-ming Liu, and Li-bo Wu
Available online 28 November 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2233-7
[Abstract](598) [PDF 855KB](18)
As the second largest economy with a rapid economic growth, China has a huge demand for metals and energies. Production and consumption of several metals in China including copper, gold and rare earth elements (REEs) take the first place in the world in recent years. Bioleaching, an approach for low grade and refractory ores has been applied in industrial production, which makes great contributions to the development of Chinese mining industry. The exploration and application of bioleaching in China is reviewed in this study. Production and consumption of several metals in the past decade in China are introduced. Technological processes and main bioleaching operations in China, such as Zijinshan Copper Mine and Mianhuakeng Uranium Mine are presented. Current challenges of bioleaching operations in China are also introduced. Prospects including efficiency improvement and environmental protection are proposed as well according to current situation in the Chinese bioleaching industry.
Research Article
Graphene oxide wrapped magnetic nanoparticles composites induced by SiO2 coating with excellent regenerability
Zhong-liang Hu, Hou-quan Cui, Yan-huai Ding, Jing-ying Li, Yi-rong Zhu, and Zhao-hui Li
Available online 26 November 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2229-3
[Abstract](440) [PDF 824KB](6)
Graphene oxide (GO) wrapped Fe3O4 nanoparticles were prepared by coating the Fe3O4 nanoparticles (NPs) with SiO2 layer, and then modifying by amino groups, which interact with the GO nanosheets to form covalent bonding. The SiO2 coating layer plays a key role in integrating the magnetic nanoparticles with the GO nanosheets. Effect of the amount of SiO2 on the morphology, structure, adsorption and regenerability of the composites was studied in detail. Results suggest that an appropriate SiO2 layer can effectively induce the GO nanosheets to completely wrap the Fe3O4 NPs, forming a core-shell Fe3O4@SiO2@GO composites where Fe3O4@SiO2 NPs were firmly encapsulated by GO nanosheets. As an adsorbent to remove Pb(II) cations from waste water, the optimized Fe3O4@SiO2@GO sample exhibits a high saturated adsorption capacity of 253 mg•g-1, and the adsorption process is well fitted by Langmuir adsorption model. Notably, it displays an excellent regeneration, maintaining ~90% adsorption capacity for 5 cycles, while other samples decrease their adsorption capacity rapidly. This work could provide a theoretical guidance to improve the regeneration of the GO based adsorbents.
Research Article
Microstructure and mechanical properties of friction pull plug welding for 2219-T87 aluminum alloy with the tungsten inert gas weld
Zhen Shao, Lei Cui, Li-jun Yang, Peng Lu, Hui-miao Wang, Zhuan-ping Sun, and Jian-ling Song
Available online 11 November 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2222-x
[Abstract](508) [PDF 1595KB](5)
Friction pull plug welding (FPPW) of 2219-T87 Tungsten Inert Gas (TIG) welded joint was studied. The microstructures, precipitate evolution, mechanical properties, and fracture morphologies of the joint were analyzed and discussed. Defect-free joints were obtained by using 7,000 r/min rotational speed, 12 mm axial feeding displacement and 20–22 kN axial force. It was found that, within the welding parameters as mentioned above, metallurgical bonding between the plug and plate can be achieved by the formation of recrystallized grains. According to the different microstructural features, the FPPW joint can be divided into different regions, including such as heat-affected zone (HAZ), thermo-mechanically affected zone (TMAZ), recrystallization zone, heat-affected zone in TIG weld (TIG-HAZ), and thermo-mechanically affected zone in TIG weld (TIG-TMAZ). In TIG-TMAZ, the grains were highly deformed and elongated owing to the shear and extrusion form the plug during FPPW process. The hardness distribution showed that TIG-TMAZ was the area with the lowest strength. The main reason of softening in TMAZ was identified as the dissolution of θ' and the coarsening of θ precipitate particles. In tensile test, the FPPW joint welded with 22 kN axial force showed the highest ultimate tensile strength of 237 MPa. The location of crack and facture was found in TIG-TMAZ. The fracture morphology of the tensile sample showed good plasticity and toughness.
Research Article
Wear behavior of the Zn-38Al-3.5Cu-1.2Mg/SiCp composite with different stabilization treatments
Sheng Liu, Qing Yuan, Yu-tong Sima, Chen-xi Liu, Fang Han, and Wen-wei Qiao
Available online 4 November 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2217-7
[Abstract](509) [PDF 2041KB](6)
Zn-38Al-3.5Cu-1.2Mg composite reinforced by nano SiCp was fabricated by stirring assisted ultrasonic vibration. In order to improve the abrasive resistance of the Zn-38Al-3.5Cu-1.2Mg/SiCp composite, several stabilization treatments with distinct solid solutions and aging temperatures were designed. The results indicate that the optimal stabilization treatment for the 38Al-3.5Cu-1.2Mg/SiCp composite involves a solution treatment at 380 °C for 6 h and aging at 170 °C for 48 h. The stabilization treatment leads to the formation of dispersive and homogeneous nano SiCp. During the friction wear condition, the nano SiCp limits the microstructure evolution from the hard α(Al, Zn) phase to the soft β(Al, Zn) phase. Besides, the increased amount of nano SiCp improves the grain dimension and contributes to abrasive resistance. Furthermore, the initiation and propagation of crack produced in the friction wear process are suppressed by the stabilization treatment, thereby improving the abrasive resistance of the Zn-38Al-3.5Cu-1.2Mg/SiCp composite.
Research Article
Phase evolution and properties of glass ceramic foams prepared by bottom ash, fly ash and pickling sludge
Jun-jie Zhang, Xiao-yan Zhang, Bo Liu, Christian Ekberg, Shi-zhen Zhao, and Shen-gen Zhang
Available online 4 November 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2219-5
[Abstract](605) [PDF 1348KB](8)
Municipal solid waste incineration bottom ash (BA), fly ash (FA) and pickling sludge (PS), causing severe environmental pollution, were transformed into glass ceramic foams with the aid of CaCO3 as the pore-foaming agent by sintering in this paper. The effect of BA/FA ratio on the phase composition, pore morphology, pore size distribution, physical properties, glass structure unit of the samples was investigated, with results showing that with the increase of BA/FA ratio, the content of glass phase, Si-O-Si and Q3Si units decrease gradually. The glass transmission temperature of the mixture has also been reduced. These leads to the decrease of the glass viscosity, further causing bubble coalescence and uneven pore distribution. Glass ceramic foams with uniform spherical pores (average pore size of 106 μm) would be fabricated, when the content of BA, FA and PS were 35wt%, 45wt% and 20wt% respectively, contributing to the glass ceramic foams of high performance with bulk density of 1.76 g/cm3, porosity of 56.01% and compressive strength exceeding 16.23 MPa. This versatile and low-cost approach brings new insight of synergistically recycling solid wastes.
Research Article
Enhanced detection of ppb-level NO2 by uniform Pt-doped ZnSnO3 nanocubes
Yao-yu Yin, Yan-bai Shen, Si-kai Zhao, Ang Li, Rui Lu, Cong Han, Bao-yu Cui, and De-zhou Wei
Available online 21 October 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2215-9
[Abstract](768) [PDF 913KB](17)
ZnSnO3 nanocubes (ZSNCs) with various Pt concentrations (1at%, 2at%, and 5at%) were synthesized by the high-yield and facile one-pot hydrothermal method. The microstructures of the obtained products were characterized by XRD, FESEM, TEM, EDS and XPS. The results showed that the ZSNCs with perovskite structure are approximately 600 nm in side length, and this size was reduced to 400 nm after Pt doping. PtOx (PtO and PtO2) nanoparticle with the diameter of about 5 nm were uniformly coated on the surface of ZSNCs. NO2 sensing properties showed that 1% Pt-ZSNCs exhibited the highest response to NO2 than pure ZSNCs and Pt-ZSNCs with other Pt concentrations. The maximum response of 1 at% Pt-ZSNCs to 500 ppb NO2 was 16.0 at the optimal operating temperature of 125 °C, which was over 11 times higher than that of pure ZSNCs. The enhanced NO2 sensing mechanisms of Pt-ZSNCs were discussed in consideration of catalytic activities and chemical sensitization of Pt doping.
Research Article
Numerical simulation of flash reduction process in a drop tube reactor with variable temperature
Yi-ru Yang, Qi-peng Bao, Lei Guo, Zhe Wang, and Zhan-cheng Guo
Available online 20 October 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2210-1
[Abstract](765) [PDF 926KB](42)
A computational fluid dynamics (CFD) model was developed to accurately predicate the flash reduction process, which is considered to be an efficient alternative ironmaking process. Laboratory-scale experiments were conducted in drop tube reactors (DTRs) to verify the accuracy of the CFD model. The reduction degree of ore particles was selected as a critical indicator of model prediction, and the simulated and experimental results were in good agreement. The influencing factors, including the particle size (20–110 μm), peak temperature (1250–1550 °C), and reductive atmosphere (H2/CO), were also investigated. The height variation lines indicated that smaller particles (50 μm) had a longer residence time (3.6 s). CO provided a longer residence time (~1.29 s) compared with H2 (~1.09 s). However, both the experimental and analytical results show that the reduction degree of particles in CO atmosphere only reached 60%, significantly lower than that in H2 atmosphere, even at the highest temperature (1550 °C). The optimum experimental particle size and peak temperature for the preparation of high-quality reduced iron were found to be 50 μm and 1350 °C in H2 atmosphere and 40 μm and 1550 °C in CO atmosphere, respectively.
Research Article
Two refractory high-entropy alloys CrHfNbTaTi and CrHfMoTaTi: Phase, microstructure and compressive properties
Jiao-jiao Yi, Fu-yang Cao, Ming-qin Xu, Lin Yang, Lu Wang, and Long Zeng
Available online 20 October 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2214-x
[Abstract](798) [PDF 689KB](33)
Two new refractory high-entropy alloys, CrHfNbTaTi and CrHfMoTaTi, deriving from the well-known HfNbTaTiZr alloy by principal element substitutions, were prepared by vacuum arc-melting. Their phase components, microstructures, and compressive properties in the as-cast state were investigated intensively. The results showed that both alloys are mainly composed of a BCC and cubic laves phase. In terms of the mechanical properties, the yield strength increased remarkably from 926 MPa of HfNbTaTiZr to 1258 MPa of CrHfNbTaTi, meanwhile a promising ductility of around 24.3 % elongation was retained. The morphology and composition of the network-shape interdendritic regions were closely related to the improvement in mechanical properties deduced by elemental substitution. Whereas, dendritic surrounded by the incompact interdendritic shell at the case of the incorporation of Mo deteriorates the yield strength, and results in a typical brittle feature.
Research Article
Enhanced microstructural and mechanical properties of Stellite/WC nanocomposite on Inconel 718 deposited through vibration-assisted laser cladding
Hossein Hosseini-Tayeb and Seyed Mahdi Rafiaei
Available online 20 October 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2211-0
[Abstract](786) [PDF 1803KB](10)
Stellite-21/WC nanopowders were deposited on Inconel using vibration-assisted laser cladding through different laser parameters. To study about the microstructural and mechanical behaviors, optical and scanning electron microscopes, hardness measurements, and wear characterizations were employed. The results showed that the variation of cooling rate resulted in remarkable effects on the microstructure of the as-cladded composites. Moreover, increasing the laser power from 150 W to 250 W increased the heat input and the dilutions. Also, in the higher power of the laser (i.e. 250 W), dilution was affected by two factors that were scanning rate and powder feeding rate. Through the addition of WC nanoparticles as the reinforcement, the dilution magnitude intensified while the hardness value surprisingly increased from 350 to 700 HV. The wear characterizations indicated that the composites containing 3 wt% WC nanoparticles possessed the highest wear resistance.
Research Article
Effects of mechanical vibration on physical, metallurgical and mechanical properties of cast-A308 (LM21) aluminum alloy
Siddharth Yadav, S.P. Tewari, J.K. Singh, and S.C. Ram
Available online 14 October 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2209-7
[Abstract](819) [PDF 1556KB](19)
The present investigation deals with the improvement in microstructure, physical, and mechanical properties of die-cast A308 alloy subjected to mechanical vibration during solidification. The different frequencies (0, 20, 30, 40, and 50 Hz) at constant amplitude (31 μm) were employed using a power amplifier as the power input device. X-ray diffractometer, optical microscopy, and scanning electron microscopy were used to examine the morphological changes in the cast samples under stationary and vibratory conditions. Metallurgical features of castings were evaluated by ImageJ analysis software. The average values of metallurgical features, i.e., primary α-Al grain size, dendrite arm spacing (DAS), avg. area of eutectic silicon, aspect ratio, and percentage porosity were reduced by 34, 59, 56, 22, and 62% respectively at 30 Hz frequency compared to stationary casting. The mechanical tests of cast samples showed that yield strength, ultimate tensile strength, elongation, and microhardness were increased by 8, 13, 17, and 16%, respectively, at 30 Hz frequency compared to stationary casting. The fractured surface of tensile specimens exhibited mixed-mode fracture behavior due to the appearance of brittle facets, cleavage facets, ductile tearing, and dimple morphologies. The presence of small dimples showed some plastic deformation occurred before fracture.
Research Article
Influence of polymer solution on the morphology and local structure of NH4ZnPO4 powders synthesized by a simple precipitation method at room temperature
Santi Phumying, Thongsuk Sichumsaeng, Pinit Kidkhunthod, Narong Chanlek, Jessada Khajonrit, Somchai Sonsupap, and Santi Maensiri
Available online 13 October 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2208-8
[Abstract](724) [PDF 1416KB](18)
In this work, NH4ZnPO4 powders were synthesized by a simple precipitation method at room temperature. The effect of PVP, PVA, sucrose and CTAB solution on the morphology and structure of the prepared samples was investigated. The phase composition and morphology of the prepared samples were characterized by using X-ray diffraction and scanning electron microscopy, respectively. Depending on the polymer sources, the hexagonal structure prepared by using non-surfactant of water completely changed to monoclinic structure when CTAB was added into the process. X-ray absorption near edge structure (XANES) and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) was used to study the local structure and surface electronic structure of the prepared samples confirming that the oxidation states of P and Zn ions are 5+ and 2+, respectively. By using ICP-OES technique, our NH4ZnPO4 powders can be classified as a slow-release fertilizer where less than 15% of the ions was released in 24 h. This study shows that a simple precipitation method using water, PVP, PVA, sucrose and CTAB as a template can be used to synthesize NH4ZnPO4 powders. In addition, this method may be extended for the preparation of other oxide materials.
Research Article
Microstructure analysis and mechanical properties of reaction-bonded B4C-SiC composites
Rong-zhen Liu, Wen-wei Gu, Yu Yang, Yuan Lu, Hong-bin Tan, and Jian-feng Yang
Available online 7 October 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2207-9
[Abstract](717) [PDF 1038KB](14)
Reaction-bonded B4C-SiC composites are highly promising materials for many advanced technological applications. However, their microstructure evolution mechanism remains unclear. Herein, B4C-SiC composites were fabricated by the Si melt infiltration process. The influence of sintering time and B4C content on the mechanical properties, microstructure, and phase evolution were investigated. X-ray diffraction results showed the presence of SiC, boron silicon, boron silicon carbide, and boron carbide. Scanning electron microscopy results showed that with the increasing of boron carbide addition, the amount of Si content decreased and the amount of unreacted B4C increased. Unreacted B4C diminished with increasing sintering time and temperature. The further microstructure analysis showed a transition area between B4C and Si, with a C concentration marginally higher in the transition area than in the Si area. It indicates that after the silicon infiltration,diffusion mechanism is the primary sintering mechanism of the composites. As the diffusion process progresses, the hardness increases. The maximum values of the Vickers hardness, flexural strength, and fracture toughness of the reaction bonded B4C/SiC ceramic composite with 12wt% B4C content sintered at 1600℃ for 0.5 h are 2600 HV, 330 MPa, and 5.2 MPa·m0.5, respectively.
Research Article

Oxidation behavior of a high Hf nickel-based superalloy in air at 900, 1000 and 1100°C

Jiu-han Xiao, Dong Wang, Li Wang, Xiang-wei Jiang, Kai-wen Li, Jia-sheng Dong, and Lang-hong Lou
Available online 1 October 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2204-z
[Abstract](1302) [PDF 1256KB](21)
In order to investigate the oxidation behavior of a nickel-based superalloy containing high hafnium content (1.34 wt%), isothermal oxidation tests were performed at 900, 1000 and 1100°C for up to 200 h. The X-ray diffraction (XRD) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) equipped with energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS) were applied to study the oxidation behavior. Weight gain of the experimental superalloy exhibits a parabola-like curve and no spallation of the oxide scale was observed in the oxidation tests. The alloy presents excellent oxidation resistance and no HfO2 is observed in the oxide scale at 900°C. Elevating the oxidation temperature up to 1000°C, HfO2 particles form in the spinel phases of the scale, and “pegs” HfO2 is observed within and beneath the inner layer of Al2O3 after 200 hours. As the oxidation temperature elevated to 1100°C, “pegs” HfO2 is observed at the early stage of oxidation test (within 25 hours). Formation mechanism of HfO2 and the impact on oxidation resistance are investigated based on the analysis of oxidation tests results at different temperatures.
Research Article
The activity coefficient of nickel oxide in SiO2 saturated MnO-SiO2 slag and Al2O3 saturated MnO-SiO2-Al2O3 slag at 1623K
Guo-xing Ren, Song-wen Xiao, Cai-bin Liao, and Zhi-hong Liu
Available online 1 October 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2205-y
[Abstract](1202) [PDF 620KB](37)
As a part of the fundamental study related to the reduction smelting of both spent lithium-ion batteries and polymetallic sea nodules based on MnO-SiO2-based slags, the activity coefficient of nickel oxide in SiO2 saturated MnO-SiO2 slag and Al2O3 saturated MnO-SiO2-Al2O3 slag at 1623 K was investigated with controlled oxygen partial pressure of 10-7, 10-6, and 10-5 Pa. The results show that the solubility of nickel oxide in the slags increased with increasing the oxygen partial pressure. The nickel in both MnO-SiO2 slag and MnO-SiO2-Al2O3 slag existed as NiO under experimental conditions. The addition of Al2O3 in the MnO-SiO2 slag decreased the dissolution of Ni in the slag, and increased the activity coefficient of NiO. Furthermore, the activity coefficient of NiO, referred to solid NiO, can be calculated as: γNiO=8.58(wt% NiO in slag) + 3.18 (SiO2 saturated MnO-SiO2 slag, 1623K);γNiO=11.06(wt% NiO in slag) + 4.07 (Al2O3 saturated MnO-SiO2-Al2O3 slag, 1623K).
Research Article
Parametric study of spark plasma sintering of Al20Cr20Fe25Ni25Mn10 high entropy alloy with improved microhardness and corrosion
Andries Mthisi, Nicholus Malatji, A. Patricia I. Popoola, and L. Rudolf Kanyane
Available online 25 September 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2200-3
[Abstract](1160) [PDF 1157KB](20)
Multicomponent Al20Cr20Fe25Ni25Mn10 alloys were synthesized using spark plasma sintering at temperatures (800 °C, 900 °C and 1000 °C) and holding times (4, 8 and 12 minutes), with aim to develop a high entropy alloy (HEA). The characteristics of spark plasma synthesized (SPSed) alloys were experimental explored through investigation of microstructures, microhardness and corrosion using scanning electron microscope coupled with energy dispersive spectroscopy, Vickers microhardness tester and potentiodynamic polarization respectively. Also, X-ray diffractometry characterization was employed to identify the phases formed on the alloys developed. The EDS results revealed that the alloys consist of elements selected in this work irrespective of varying the sintering parameters. Also, the XRD, EDS and SEM collectively provided evidence that the fabricated alloys are characterized by globular microstructures exhibiting FCC phase formed on a basis of solid solution mechanism; this implies that SPSed alloy shows features of HEAs. The alloy produced at 1000 °C and holding time 12 minutes portrayed an optimal microhardness of 447.97 HV, however, this microhardness decreased to 329.47 HV after heat treatment. The same alloy showed outstanding corrosion resistance performance. Increase in temperature resulted in Al20Cr20Fe25Ni25Mn10 alloy with superior density, microhardness and corrosion resistance over other alloys developed at different parameters.
Research Article
Effect of cermet substrates characteristics on the microstructure and properties of TiAlN coating
Qian-bing You, Ji Xiong, Tian-en Yang, Tao Hua, Yun-liang Huo, and Jun-bo Liu
Available online 25 September 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2198-6
[Abstract](1168) [PDF 2398KB](31)
The composition and structure of substrate material have an important influence on the coating performances, especially the bonding strength and coating hardness,which determines whether the coating can be used. In the paper, the TiAlN coating was deposited on the TC with 0-20wt.% WC by arc ion plating. The influence of cermet substrates characteristics on the structure and properties of TiAlN coating was researched. The results show that TiAlN coating deposited on TC substrates has columnar grain structure. With the increasing of WC, the strength ratio of I(111)/I(200) of TiAlN and the adhesion gradually increases. When there is no WC in the substrate, the preferred orientation of TiAlN coating is (200). As the contents of WC go up, the preferred orientation of TiAlN coating becomes (111) and (200). The biggest difference between the adhesion strength of coating and substrate is the microstructure and composition of the substrate. Scratching results show that the adhesion of TiAlN coating gradually increases from A1 to A5 respectively 53N, 52 N, 56 N, 65 N, 58 N. The coating on the TC substrate with 15wt.% WC has the highest H/E and H3/E2, which indicating the best wear resistance. The failure mechanisms of coated tools are coating peeling, adhesive wear, and abrasive wear. As the cutting speed increases, the amount ofthe flank wear increases, and the durability decreases accordingly. Accompanied by the increasing of WC, the flank wear of coated cermet insert decreases first and then increases. 
Research Article
Effect of graphene-oxide on corrosion, mechanical and biological properties of Mg-based nanocomposite
Saeid Jabbarzare, Hamid Reza Bakhsheshi-Rad, Amir Abbas Nourbakhsh, Tahmineh Ahmadi, and Filippo Berto
Available online 25 September 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2201-2
[Abstract](1273) [PDF 2126KB](25)
The purpose of this paper is to investigate the role of graphene oxide (GO) on mechanical and corrosion behaviors, antibacterial performance, and cell response of Mg-Zn-Mn (MZM) composite. MZM/GO nanocomposites were made with various amounts of GO (0.5, 1.0, and 1.5 wt.%) by the semi powder metallurgy method. The GO influence on the MZM composite was analyzed by hardness, compressive and corrosion tests, and antibacterial and cytotoxicity tests. According to the experimental results, increasing the GO amount increased hardness values, compressive value, and antibacterial performance of the MZM composite, while cell viability and osteogenesis level presented reversed trends. It was shown, based on the electrochemical examination, which the corrosion behavior of the MZM alloy was significantly enhanced after encapsulation of 0.5 wt.% GO. Taken together, the antibacterial and mechanically MZM nanocomposites reinforced with GO to be used for implant applications.
Research Article
Effect of cathodic potential on stress corrosion cracking behavior of 21Cr2NiMo steel in simulated seawater
Meng-hao Liu, Zhi-yong Liu, Cui-wei Du, Xiao-qin Zhan, Chun-duo Dai, Yue Pan, and Xiao-gang Li
Available online 25 September 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2199-5
[Abstract](1144) [PDF 2930KB](3)
This study aims at providing systematically insights into the impact of cathodic polarization on the stress corrosion cracking (SCC) behavior of 21Cr2NiMo steel. Slow stress tensile test demonstrated that 21Cr2NiMo steel is highly sensitive to hydrogen embrittlement at strong cathodic polarization. The lowest SCC susceptibility is presented at -775 mVSCE whereas the SCC susceptibility increased remarkably below -950 mVSCE. SEM and EBSD revealed that cathodic potential decline causes a transition in fracture path from transgranular mode to intergranular mode. The intergranular mode transforms from bainite boundaries separation to prior austenitic grain boundaries separation when more cathodically polarized. Furthermore, corrosion pits promoted the nucleation of SCC cracks. In conclusion, the SCC mechanism transforms from the coexistence of hydrogen embrittlement mechanism and anodic dissolution mechanism to typical hydrogen embrittlement mechanism with applied potential decreases.
Research Article
Microstructure and tribological behavior of the nickel-coated-graphite reinforced Babbitt metal composite fabricated by selective laser melting
Xing-ke Zhao and Xu-sheng Hai
Available online 19 September 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2195-9
[Abstract](1194) [PDF 1740KB](5)
For purpose of improving the properties of Babbitt alloys, Ni-coated-graphite reinforced Babbitt metal composite specimens were prepared by selective laser melting (SLM) process, and their microstructures, mechanical and tribological properties were studied using scanning electron microscope (SEM), shear test and dry-sliding wear test, respectively. The results show that most of NCGr particles distribute at boundaries of laser beads in the cross-section of the SLM composite specimens. Microcracks or microvoids form at boundaries of laser beads where NCGr particle accumulating. Both shearing strength and the friction coefficient of the SLM composite specimens decrease with increasing NCGr content. The shearing strength and the friction coefficient of the SLM composite sample with 6% NCGr decrease by around 20% and 33% compared with the NCGr-free sample. Friction mechanism changes from plastic shaping furrow to brittle cutting with increasing NCGr content. A practical Babbitt material with a lower friction coefficient and proper strength could be expected if the dispersion of the NCGr particles is controlled by choosing NCGr particles with thicker Ni layer and precisely controlling laser energy input during SLM process.
Research Article
Experimental study on flow zone distribution and mixing time in a Peirce-Smith copper converter
Hong-liang Zhao, Jing-qi Wang, Feng-qin Liu, and Hong Yong Sohn
Available online 19 September 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2196-8
[Abstract](1190) [PDF 623KB](39)
Peirce-Smith copper converting involved complex multiphase flow and mixing. In this work, the flow zone distribution and the mixing time in a copper PSC were investigated in a 1:5 scaled cold model. Flow field distribution including dead, splashing and strong-loop zones were measured and a dimensionless equation was developed to correlate the effects of stirring and mixing energy with an error less than 5%. Four positions in the bath including injection, splashing, strong-loop and dead zones were selected to add the hollow salt powders tracer and measure the mixing time. The injection of the quartz flux through the tuyeres or into the backflow point of the splashing wave through a chute is recommended, instead of adding it through a crane hopper from the top of the furnace, to improve the slag-making reaction.
Research Article
The stress corrosion cracking behavior of high-strength mooring chain steel in SO2-polluted coastal atmosphere
Meng-hao Liu, Zhi-yong Liu, Cui-wei Du, Xiao-qin Zhan, Xiao-jia Yang, and Xiao-gang Li
Available online 12 September 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2192-z
[Abstract](1337) [PDF 2645KB](4)
21Cr2NiMo steel is widely used to stabilize offshore oil platforms, however, it suffers from stress corrosion cracking (SCC). Herein, we studied the SCC behavior of 21Cr2NiMo steel in SO2-polluted coastal atmospheres. Electrochemical tests revealed that the addition of SO2 increases the corrosion current. Rust characterization showed that the SO2 addition densities the corrosion products and promotes pitting. Furthermore, the slow strain rate tests demonstrated high susceptibility to SCC at high SO2 contents. Fracture morphologies revealed that the stress-corrosion cracks initiated at corrosion pits and the crack propagation showed transgranular and intergranular cracking modes. In conclusion, the SCC is mix-controlled by anodic dissolution and hydrogen embrittlement mechanisms.
Research Article
Synthesis, characterization and magnetic properties of KFeO2 nanoparticles prepared by a simple egg-white solution route
Thongsuk Sichumsaeng, Nutthakritta Phromviyo, Supree Pinitsoontorn, Pinit Kidkhunthod, Narong Chanlek, and Santi Maensiri
Available online 12 September 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2194-x
[Abstract](1350) [PDF 2541KB](17)
In this work, nanoparticles of potassium ferrite (KFeO2) were synthesized by a simple egg-white solution method upon calcination in air at different temperatures of 500, 600, and 700ºC for 2 h. The effects of calcination temperature on structural and magnetic properties of the synthesized KFeO2 nanoparticles were investigated. By varying the calcination temperature, X-ray diffraction (XRD) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) results indicated the changes of crystallinity and morphology including particle size, respectively. Significantly, the reduction of particle size of the synthesized KFeO2 was found to have a great influence on the magnetic properties. At room temperature, the synthesized KFeO2 nanoparticles prepared at 600ºC exhibited the highest saturation magnetization (MS) of 26.24 emu•g-1. In addition, the coercivity (HC) increased from 3.51 to 16.89 kA•m-1 with increasing calcination temperature up to 700ºC. The zero-field-cooled (ZFC) results showed that the blocking temperatures (TB) of about 125 and 85 K were observed in the samples calcined at 500 and 600ºC, respectively. Therefore, this work shows that the egg-white solution method is a simple, cost effective, and environmental-friendly for the preparation of KFeO2 nanoparticles.
Research Article
Kinetically controlled synthesis of atomically precise silver nanocluster for catalytic reduction of 4-nitrophenol
Xian-hu Liu, Fei-hong Wang, Cong-ying Shao, Gang-feng Du, and Bing-qing Yao
Available online 5 September 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2186-x
[Abstract](1406) [PDF 1082KB](31)
It is challenging to synthesize atom-precise silver nanoclusters (NCs), which is essential for the development of NCs. In this study, we report the synthesis of atom-precise silver NCs in high purity by a kinetically controlled strategy. The silver NCs were prepared using a mild reducing agent via a one-pot method. The as-prepared silver NCs were confirmed to be Ag49(D-pen)24 (D-pen: D-penicillamine) based on the discussion of matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS) and thermogravimetry (TG) characterizations. Interface structures of the silver NCs were illustrated by both 1H-NMR and FTIR spectroscopy. The silver NCs were supported on the active carbon (AC) to form the Ag NCs/AC which displayed excellent activity for the catalytic reduction of 4-nitrophenol with the kinetic reaction rate constant k of 0.21 min−1, outperforming several catalysts reported previously. Besides, the catalytic activity of Ag NCs/AC kept almost constant after six times of recycle, suggesting its good stability.
Research Article
Multi-objective collaborative optimization of metallurgical properties of iron carbon agglomerates using response surface methodology
Ji-wei Bao, Man-sheng Chu, Zheng-gen Liu, Dong Han, Lai-geng Cao, Jun Guo, and Zi-chuan Zhao
Available online 5 September 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2188-8
[Abstract](1301) [PDF 1301KB](19)
Iron carbon agglomerates (ICA) is considered to be an innovative charge to realize low carbon blast furnace (BF) ironmaking. In this study, the central composite Design (CCD) based on response surface methodology (RSM) was used to synergistically optimize the compressive strength, reactivity and post-reaction strength of ICA. The results show that the iron ore ratio has the most significant influence on compressive strength, reactivity and post-reaction strength. There are significant interactions on the compressive strength and reactivity between the iron ore ratio and carbonization temperature or the iron ore ratio and carbonization time, while the three variables do not interact with each other on the post-reaction strength. In addition, the optimal process parameters are iron ore ratio of 15.30%, carbonization temperature of 1000℃ and carbonization time of 4.27 h, and the model prediction results of compressive strength, reactivity and post-reaction strength are 4026 N, 55.03% and 38.24% respectively, which are close to the experimental results and further verifies the accuracy and reliability of the models.
Research Article
Effect of graphene addition on physico-mechanical and tribological properties of Cu-nanocomposites
Adnan I. Khdair and A. F. Ibrahim
Available online 5 September 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2183-0
[Abstract](1327) [PDF 731KB](30)
This paper presents experimental investigation of the mechanical and tribological properties of Cu-GNs nanocomposites. We employed electroless coating process to coat GNs with Ag particles to avoid their reaction with Cu and formation of intermetallic phases. We studied the effect of GNs content on structural, mechanical and tribological properties of the produced nanocomposites. The results showed that the coating process is an efficient technique to avoid reaction between Cu and C and the formation intermetallic phases. The addition of GNs should be done wisely since the mechanical and tribological properties improved with increasing GNs up to a certain threshold values. The optimum GNs proved is 0.5%, at which hardness, wear rate and coefficient of friction are improved by 13%, 81.9% and 49.8%, respectively, compared to Cu- nanocomposite. These improved properties are due to the reduced crystallite size, presence of GNs and homogenous distribution of constituents.
Research Article
Fabrication of green one-part geopolymer from silica-rich vanadium tailing via thermal activation and modification
Shen-xu Bao, Yong-peng Luo, and Yi-min Zhang
Available online 3 September 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2182-1
[Abstract](1488) [PDF 1405KB](25)
The aim of this investigation is to prepare geopolymeric precursor using vanadium tailing (VT) by thermal activation and modification. The homogeneous blend of VT and sodium hydroxide is calcinated at elevated temperature for activation and then was modified with metakaolin to assemble geopolymeric precursor. During the thermal activation, the VT is corroded by sodium hydroxide, and then forms sodium silicate on the particles surface. After water is added, the sodium silicate coating is dissolved to release silicon species and create alkaline solution environment, and then the metakaolin dissolved in the alkaline environment to provide aluminum species, followed by geopolymerization. Meanwhile, the VT particles are connected together by gel produced from geopolymerization, resulted in geopolymer with excellent mechanical performance. This investigation not only improves the feasibility of geopolymer technology in large-scale and in-situ applications, but also benefits the utilization of VT and other silica-rich solid wastes.
Research Article
3D graphitic carbon sphere foams as sorbents for cleaning oil spills
Sai-sai Li, Hai-jun Zhang, Long-hao Dong, Hai-peng Liu, Quan-li Jia, and Dong Xu
Available online 3 September 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2180-3
[Abstract](1343) [PDF 737KB](12)
Frequent offshore oil spill accidents, industrial oily sewage and the indiscriminate disposal of urban oily sewage have caused serious impacts on human living environment and health. The traditional oil-water separation methods not only cause easily environmental secondary pollution, but also waste of limited resources. Therefore, in this work, 3D graphitic carbon sphere foams (3D-foams) possessed three-dimensional porous structure with pore size distribution of 25~200 μm, and high porosity of 62% were prepared for oil adsorption via foam-gel casting method using graphitic carbon spheres as starting materials. The resulted indicated that the water contact angle of as-prepared 3D-foams was 130°. The contents of graphitic carbon spheres (GCS) greatly influenced the hydrophobicity, water contact angle (WCA) and microstructure of the as-prepared samples. The adsorption capacities of as-prepared 3D-foams for paraffin oil, vegetable oil and vacuum pump oil were about 12~15 g/g, which were 10 times of that graphitic carbon spheres powder.
Research Article
Process-structure-property relationship for plasma sprayed iron based amorphous-crystalline composite coatings
Abhishek Pathak, Biswajyoti Mukherjee, Krishna Kant Pandey, Aminul Islam, Pavan Bijalwan, Monojit Dutta, Atanu Banerjee, and Anup Kumar Keshri
Available online 27 August 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2171-4
[Abstract](1592) [PDF 1233KB](52)
The present study explores the fabrication of Fe-based amorphous coating by air plasma spraying and its dependency on the coating parameters (plasma power, primary gas flow rate, stand-off distance and powder feed rate). XRD of the coatings deposited at optimized spray parameters showed the presence of amorphous-crystalline phase. Coatings deposited at lower plasma power and moderate gas flow rate exhibited better density, hardness and wear resistance. All coatings demonstrated equally good resistance against corrosive environment (NaCl). Mechanical, wear and tribological studies indicate that a single process parameter optimization cannot provide good coating performance but instead, all process parameters are having their unique role in defining better properties to the coating by controlling the in-flight particle temperature and velocity profile followed by the cooling pattern of molten droplet before impingement on the substrate.
Research Article
Interface behavior of chalcopyrite during flotation from cyanide tailings
Xue-min Qiu, Hong-ying Yang, Guo-bao Chen, Lin-lin Tong, Zhe-nan Jin, and Qin Zhang
Available online 27 August 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2170-5
[Abstract](1372) [PDF 1042KB](16)
Interface characteristics of cyanide tailings are very different compared with those of raw ore. Valuable elements could not be comprehensively recovered via flotation from cyanide tailings originating from Shandong province, China. Herein, the interface and floatability of these tailings were investigated. The chalcopyrite in the cyanide tailings investigated herein was fine with a porous surface. The floatability of 68% chalcopyrite was similar to galena in the presence of a collector. This part of chalcopyrite was compactly wrapped in a layer of fine galena particles. The recovery of chalcopyrite sharply decreased as the nonpolar oil residue in cyanide tailings was removed through alcohol extraction; however, this removal had no effect on galena. The other chalcopyrite in the flotation tailings was covered with an oxidation layer consisting of O, Fe, S, Pb, Cu, Zn, and Si.
Research Article
Carbothermic reduction of vanadium titanomagnetite with the assistance of sodium carbonate
Lu-ming Chen, Yu-lan Zhen, Guo-hua Zhang, De-sheng Chen, Li-na Wang, Hong-xin Zhao, Fan-cheng Meng, and Tao Qi
Available online 10 August 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2160-7
[Abstract](1404) [PDF 2054KB](32)
In the present study, the carbothermic reduction of vanadium titanomagnetite concentrates (VTC) with the assistance of Na2CO3 was carried out in argon atmosphere between 1073 K and 1473 K. X-ray diffraction (XRD) and scanning electron microscope (SEM) were used to investigate the phase transformations during the reaction process. By investigating the reaction between VTC and Na2CO3, it was concluded that molten Na2CO3 could break the structure of titanomagnetite by combining with the acidic oxides (Fe2O3, TiO2, Al2O3, and SiO2) to form the Na-rich melt, and release FeO and MgO. Therefore, Na2CO3 could accelerate the reduction rate. In addition, the addition of Na2CO3 was also beneficial for the agglomeration of iron particles and the slag-metal separation by decreasing the viscosity of slag. Thus, the Na2CO3 assisted carbothermic reduction will be a promising method to treat VTC at low temperatures.
Research Article
New insights into the flotation response of brucite and serpentine of different conditioning time: Surface dissolution behavior
Ya-feng Fu, Wan-zhong Yin, Chuan-yao Sun, Bin Yang, Jin Yao, Hong-liang Li, Chuang Li, and Hyunjung Kim
Available online 10 August 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2158-1
[Abstract](1655) [PDF 721KB](29)
Gangue minerals inadvertently dissolution frequently plays a detrimental role on the flotation of valuable minerals. In this paper, the effect of conditioning time on the flotation separation of brucite and serpentine was investigated. By analyzing the Mg2+ concentration, the relative content of elements, and pulp viscosity, the effect of mineral dissolution on the brucite flotation was studied. The artificial mixed mineral flotation results (with -10 μm serpentine) showed that, with the conditioning time extended from 60 s to 360 s, a large amount of Mg2+ on the mineral surface gradually dissolved into the pulp, resulting in a decrease of brucite recovery (from 83.83% to 76.79%), whereas the recovery of serpentine increased from 52.12% to 64.03%. Moreover, the SEM observation was applied to analyze the agglomeration behavior of brucite and serpentine, which clearly demonstrated the difference of adhesion behavior under various conditioning time. Finally, the total interaction energy that carried out by extended DLVO (E-DLVO) theory also supports the conclusion that the gravitational force between brucite and serpentine increases significantly with the increase of conditioning time.
Research Article
Process and kinetics of the selective extraction of cobalt from high-silicon low-grade cobalt ore by ammonia leaching
Lei Tian, Ao Gong, Xuan-gao Wu, Xiao-qiang Yu, Zhi-feng Xu, and Li-jie Chen
Available online 10 August 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2161-6
[Abstract](1377) [PDF 1527KB](5)
In this study, an ammonia-based system was used to selectively leach Co from an African high-silicon low-grade Co ore. In this process, other elemental impurities were prevented from leaching; hence, the subsequent process was simple and environmentally friendly. The results revealed that the leaching ratio of Co can reach 95.61% using (NH4)2SO4 as a leaching agent under experimental conditions, which involved a (NH4)2SO4 concentration, reductant dosage, leaching temperature, reaction time, and liquid–solid ratio of 300 g/L, 0.7 g, 353 K, 4 h, and 6:1, respectively. The leaching kinetics of Co showed that the apparent activation energy of Co leaching was 72.97 kJ/mol (i.e., in the range of 40–300 kJ/mol). This indicated that the leaching of Co from the Co ore was controlled using an interfacial chemical reaction. The reaction orders of the particle size and (NH4)2SO4 concentration during leaching were 0.21 and 1.5, respectively. The leaching kinetics model of the Co developed in this study can be expressed as 1-(1-α)1/3 = 28.01 × 103×r0-1 × [(NH4)2SO4]1.5 × exp(-72970/8.314T).
Research Article
Effect of ‎2-Mercaptobenzothiazole concentration on the sour corrosion behavior of API X60 pipeline steel: Electrochemical parameters and adsorption mechanism
Masoud Sabzi, Amir Hayati Jozani, Farzad Zeidvandi, Majid Sadeghi, and Saeid Mersagh Dezfuli
Available online 30 July 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2156-3
[Abstract](1403) [PDF 1304KB](11)
The effect of 2-Mercaptobenzothiazole concentration on the sour corrosion behavior of API X60 pipeline steel in an environment containing H2S at 25 °C and at the presence of 0, 2.5, 5, 7.5 and 10 g/L of 2-Mercaptobenzothiazole inhibitor was investigated. In order to examine the sour corrosion behavior of API X60 pipeline steel, Open Circuit Potential (OCP), potentiodynamic polarization and Electrochemical Impedance Spectroscopy (EIS) tests were used. The Energy Dispersive Spectroscopy (EDS) and Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) were also used to analyze corrosion products. The results of OCP and potentiodynamic polarization both showed that 2-Mercaptobenzothiazole reduces the speed of both anodic and cathodic reactions. Assessment of  the Gibbs free energy of the inhibitor showed that it has a value of more than –20 kJ.mol−1and less than –40 kJ.mol−1. Therefore, the adsorption of 2-Mercaptobenzothiazole on the surface of the API X60 pipeline steel was occurred both physically and chemically. The latter was particularly intended to be adsorbed. Also, as the Gibbs free energy of the inhibitor took a negative value, it was concluded that the adsorption of 2-Mercaptobenzothiazole on the surface of the pipeline steel occurs spontaneously. The results of the EIS indicated that with increase of 2-Mercaptobenzothiazole inhibitor concentration, the corrosion resistance of API X60 steel is increased.An analysis of the corrosion products revealed that iron sulfide compounds are formed on the surface. In sum, the results showed that the increase of the inhibitor concentration results in a decrease in the corrosion rate and an increase ininhibitory efficiency (%IE). Additionally, it was found that 2-Mercaptobenzothiazole adsorption process on the API X 60 steel surfaces in a H2S-containing environment follows the Langmuir adsorption isotherm.And the adsorption process is carried out spontaneously. 
Research Article
Insights into U(VI) adsorption behavior onto polypyrrole coated 3R-MoS2 nanosheets prepared with the molten salt electrolysis method
Yu-hui Liu, Meng Tang, Shuang Zhang, Yu-ling Lin, Ying-cai Wang, You-qun Wang, Ying Dai, Xiao-hong Cao, Zhi-bin Zhang, and Yun-hai Liu
Available online 30 July 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2154-5
[Abstract](1682) [PDF 1326KB](53)
To improve the separation capacity of uranium in aqueous solutions, 3R-MoS2 nanosheets were prepared with molten salt electrolysis and further modified with polypyrrole (PPy) to synthesize a hybrid nanoadsorbent (PPy/3R-MoS2). The preparation conditions of PPy/3R-MoS2 were investigated and the obtained nanosheets were characterized with SEM, HRTEM, XRD, FTIR, and XPS. The results show that PPy/3R-MoS2 exhibited enhanced adsorption capacity towards U(VI) compared to pure 3R-MoS2 and PPy; the maximum adsorption was 200.4 mg/g. The adsorption mechanism was elucidated with XPS and FTIR: 1) negatively charged PPy/3R-MoS2 nanosheets attracted UO22+ by electrostatic attraction; 2) exposed C, N, Mo, and S atoms complexed with U(VI) through coordination; 3) Mo in the complex partly reduced the adsorbed U(VI) to U(IV), which further regenerated the adsorption point and continuously adsorbed U(VI). The design of the PPy/3R-MoS2 composite with high adsorption capacity and chemical stability provides a new direction for the removal of radionuclide.
Research Article
Effect of calcination temperature on the pozzolanic activity of maize straw stem ash treated with portlandite solution
Ting-ye Qi, Hao-chen Wang, Guo-rui Feng, Yu-jiang Zhang, Jin-wen Bai, and Yan-na Han
Available online 24 July 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2148-3
[Abstract](1441) [PDF 1117KB](15)
The effect of calcination temperature on the pozzolanic activity of maize straw stem ash (MSSA) was evaluated. The MSSA samples calcined at temperature values of 500, 700, and 850 °C were dissolved in portlandite solution for 6 h, and the residual samples were obtained. The MSSA and MSSA residual samples were analyzed using FT-IR, XRD, SEM, and XPS to determine the vibration bonds, minerals, microstructure, and Si 2p transformation behavior. The conductivity, pH value, loss of conductivity with dissolving time of the MSSA-portlandite mixed solution were determined. The main oxide composition of MSSA were silica and potassium oxide. The dissolution of Si4+ content of MSSA at 500 °C were high compared to those of the other calcination temperatures. The conductivity and loss of conductivity of MSSA at 700 °C were high compared to those of the other calcination temperatures at a particular dissolving time due to the higher KCl content in MSSA at 700 °C. C-S-H was easily identified in MSSA samples using XRD, and small cubic and nearly spherical particles of C-S-H were found in the MSSA residual samples. In conclusion, the optimum calcination temperature of MSSA having the best pozzolanic activity is 500 °C but avoid excessive agglomeration.
Research Article
The influence of gamma irradiation on the electrical, thermal, and electrochemical properties of reduced graphene oxide
M.M. Atta, H.A. Ashry, G.M. Nasr, and H.A.Abd EI-Rehim
Available online 17 July 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2146-5
[Abstract](1591) [PDF 1014KB](52)
In this paper, the properties of γ-ray reduced graphene oxide (GRGOs) samples are compared to hydrazine reduced graphene oxide (HRGO) sample. Characterization techniques FTIR, XRD, Raman spectra, Brunauer-Emmett-Teller (BET) surface area analysis, TGA, electrometer, and cyclicvoltemety were used for the verification of the reduction process, structural changes & defects, and measure the thermal, electrical, and electrochemical properties of samples. It was concluded that γ- Irradiation distorts the structure of GRGOs with massive defects owing to the greater formation of new smaller sp2 - hybridized domains compared to HRGO. The thermal stability of GRGOs was higher than HRGO indicating the more efficient removal of thermally-labile oxygen species by γ-ray. Furthermore, RRGOs showed a pseudocapacitive behavior compared to the electrical double layer behavior of HRGO. The most interesting obtained results are the enhanced specific capacitance of GRGOs to nearly three times in comparison to HRGO which indicates the preference for radiation reduction method in energy storage applications.
Research Article
A new electrochemical process on the recovery metallic Mn from waste LiMn2O4 based Li-ion batteries in NaCl-CaCl2 melts
Jing-long Liang, Dong-bin Wang, Le Wang, Hui Li, Wei-gang Cao, and Hong-yan Yan
Available online 16 July 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2144-7
[Abstract](1537) [PDF 798KB](23)
A new method for the recovery of Mn is proposed via direct electrochemical reduction of LiMn2O4 from the waste lithium-ion batteries in NaCl-CaCl2 melts at 750℃. The results show the reduction process of LiMn2O4 by electrochemical methods on the coated electrode surface are in three steps, Mn(IV) → Mn(III) → Mn(II) → Mn. The products of electro-deoxidation are CaMn2O4, MnO, (MnO)x(CaO)1-x and Mn. Metal Mn appears when the electrolytic voltage increased to 2.6 V. Increasing the voltage could promote the deoxidation reaction process. With the advancement of the three-phase interline(3PI), the electric deoxygenation gradually proceeds from the outward to core. With the high voltage, the kinetic process of the reduction reaction is accelerated, and double 3PI in different stages are generated.
Research Article
Microstructure and phase elemental distribution in high-boron multi-component cast irons
Yuliia G. Chabak, K. Shimizu, Vasily G. Efremenko, Michail A. Golinskyi, Kenta Kusumoto, Vadim I. Zurnadzhy, and Alexey V. Efremenko
Available online 9 July 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2135-8
[Abstract](2240) [PDF 3538KB](11)
The novel cast irons of nominal chemical composition (wt.%) 0.7C-5W-5Mo-5V-10Cr-2.5Ti were fabricated with the additions of 1.6 wt.% B and 2.7 wt.% B. The aim of this work was a study of the boron’s effect on the alloys’ structural state and phase elemental distribution with respect to the formation of wear-resistant structure constituents. It was found that the alloy containing 1.6 % B was composed of three different eutectics: (a) “M2(C,B)5+ferrite” having a “Chinese Script” morphology (89.8 vol. %), (b) “M7(C,B)3+Austenite” having a “Rosette” morphology, and (c) “M3C+Austenite” having a “Ledeburite”-shaped morphology (2.7 vol. %). With a boron content of 2.7 wt.%, the bulk hardness increased from 31 HRC to 38.5 HRC. The primary carboborides M2(C,B)5 with average microhardness of 2797 HV appeared in the structure with a volume fraction of 17.6 vol.%. The volume fraction of eutectics (a) and (b, c) decreased to 71.2 vol.% and 3.9 vol. %, respectively. The matrix was “ferrite/austenite” for 1.6 wt.% B and “ferrite/pearlite” for 2.7 wt.% B. Both cast irons contained compact precipitates of carbide (Ti,M)C and carboboride (Ti,M)(C,В) with a volume fraction of 7.3-7.5 vol. %. The elemental phase distributions, discussed based on EDX-analysis and the appropriate phase formulae, are presented.
Research Article
Solid state reaction of CaO-V2O5 mixture: A fundamental study for the vanadium extraction process
Jun-yi Xiang, Xin Wang, Gui-shang Pei, Qing-yun Huang, and Xue-wei Lv
Available online 9 July 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2136-7
[Abstract](1590) [PDF 745KB](20)
The aim of this study was to investigate the phase transformation and kinetics of the solid-state reaction of CaO-V2O5, which is the predominant binary mixture involved in the vanadium recovery process. Thermal analysis, X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscope and energy dispersive spectrometry were used to characterize the solid-state reaction of the samples. The extent of the solid reaction was derived using the preliminary quantitative phase analysis of the X-ray diffractograms. The results indicate that the solid reaction of CaO-V2O5 mixture is significantly influenced by the reaction temperature and CaO/V2O5 mole ratio. The transformation of calcium vanadates goes through a step-by-step reaction of CaO-V2O5, CaO-CaV2O6, and CaO-Ca2V2O7 depending on the CaO/V2O5 mole ratio. The kinetic data of the solid reaction of CaO-V2O5 (1:1) mixture was found to follow second order reaction model. The activation energy (Eα) and the pre-exponential factor (A) were determined to be 145.38 kJ/mol, and 3.67×108 min-1, respectively.
Research Article
Recovery and regeneration of LiFePO4 from spent lithium ion batteries via a novel pretreating process
Cheng Yang, Jia-liang Zhang, Qian-kun Jing, Yu-bo Liu, Yong-qiang Chen, and Cheng-yan Wang
Available online 9 July 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2137-6
[Abstract](1747) [PDF 1311KB](38)
Recently, the recycling of spent LiFePO4 batteries has received extensive attention due to their environmental impact and economic benefit. In the pretreating process of spent LiFePO4 batteries, the separation of the active materials and the current collectors determines the difficulty of recovery process and the quality of product. In this work, a facile and efficient pretreating process is first proposed. After only freezing the electrode pieces and immersing it in boiling water, LiFePO4 materials have been basically peeled from Al foil. Then, after roasting in an inert atmosphere and sieving, all of the cathode and anode active materials were separated from Al and Cu foils easily and efficiently. The active materials were subjected to acid leaching and the leaching solution further prepared FePO4 and Li2CO3. Finally, the battery-grade FePO4·and Li2CO3 were used to re-synthesize LiFePO4/C via the carbon thermal reduction method. Re-synthesized LiFePO4/C cathode exhibits good electrochemical performance, which satisfies the requirement for middle-end LiFePO4 batteries. The whole process is found to be environmental and have great potential for industrial-scale recycling of spent lithium-ion batteries.
Research Article
Extraction of copper from copper bearing biotite by ultrasonic-assisted leaching
Bao-qiang Yu, Jue Kou, Chun-bao Sun, and Yi Xing
Available online 5 July 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2132-y
[Abstract](1492) [PDF 467KB](15)
Copper bearing biotite is a typical refractory copper mineral on the surface of Zambian copper belt. Aiming to treat this kind of copper oxide ore with a more effective method, ultrasonic-assisted acid leaching was conducted in this paper. Compared with regular acid leaching, ultrasound could reduce leaching time from 120 min to 40 min, and sulfuric acid concentration could be reduced from 0.5 mol•L-1 to 0.3 mol•L-1. Besides, leaching temperature could be reduced from 75℃ to 45℃ at same copper leaching rate of 78%. Mechanism analysis indicates that ultrasonic wave can cause delamination of copper bearing biotite and increase the specific surface area from 0.55 m2•g-1 to 1.67 m2•g-1. The results indicate that copper extraction from copper bearing biotite by ultrasonic-assisted acid leaching is more effective than regular acid leaching. This study proposes a promising method for recycling valuable metals from phyllosilicate minerals.
Research Article
Fine Structure Characterization of Explosively Welded GH3535/316H Bimetallic Plate Interface
Jia Xiao, Ming Li, Li Jiang, De-jun Wang, Xiang-Xi Ye, Jian-ping Liang, Ze-zhong Chen, Na-xiu Wang, and Zhi-jun Li
Available online 26 June 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2128-7
[Abstract](1209) [PDF 2033KB](49)
To provide one more cost-effective structural materials for the ultra-high temperature molten salt thermal storage systems, the explosion-welded technology was induced to manufacture the GH3535/316H bimetallic plates in the present work. The microstructures of the bonding interfaces have been extensively investigated by scanning electron microscope, energy dispersive spectrometer, and electron probe micro-analyzer. It was discovered that the bonding interfaces possess the periodic wavy morphology and are adorned by peninsula- or island-like transition zones. At higher magnification, matrix recrystallization region, fine grain region, columnar grain region, equiaxed grain region, and shrinkage porosity can be observed in the transition zones and the surrounding area. The analysis of electron backscattered diffraction demonstrated that the strain in the recrystallization region of the GH3535 matrix and transition zone is lower than the substrate. Strain concentration occurred at the interface and the solidification defects in the transition zone. The dislocation substructure in 316H near the interface was characterized by the electron channeling contrast imaging. The results showed that a lot of dislocations network was formed in the grains of 316H. Microhardness tests showed that the micro-hardness decreased as the distance from the welding interface increased, and the lowest hardness value was inside the transition zone.
Research Article
Synthesis and characterization of ceria nanoparticles by complex-precipitation route
Yan-ping Li, Xue Bian, Yang Liu, Wen-yuan Wu, and Gao-feng Fu
Available online 24 June 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2126-9
[Abstract](1507) [PDF 1331KB](6)
Ceria (CeO2) nanoparticles have been successfully synthesized via a simple complex-precipitation route, which employs cerium chloride as cerium source and citric acid as precipitant. The elemental analysis results of carbon, hydrogen, oxygen and cerium in the precursors were calculated, and the results revealed that the precursors were composed of Ce (OH)3, [Ce(H2Cit)3] or [CeCit]. X-ray diffraction (XRD) analysis showed all ceria nanoparticles prepared to be face centered cubic structure. As n value was 0.25 and pH value was 5.5, the specific surface area of the sample reached the maximum value of 83.17 m2/g. Ceria nanoparticles were observed by scanning electron microscope (SEM). Selected electron diffraction patterns of some samples were obtained by transmission electron microscope (TEM), and the crystal plane spacing of each low-exponential crystal plane was calculated. The UV-vis transmittance curve shows that it has the ability to absorb ultraviolet light and pass through visible light. Among all samples, the minimum of the average transmittance of UVA (TUVA) is 4.42%, and the minimum of the average transmittance of UVB (TUVB) is 1.56%.
Research Article
Electrochemically functionalized graphene as an anti-corrosion reinforcement in Cu matrix composite thin films
Akhya kumar Behera, Amlan Das, Sanjeev Das, and Archana Mallik
Available online 24 June 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2124-y
[Abstract](1675) [PDF 1414KB](22)
In this article, Cu-Gr composite thin films are prepared by electrodeposition route using in-house synthesized graphene sheets. Graphene sheets are synthesized by the electrochemical exfoliation route using 1M HClO4 acid as electrolyte. Graphene sheets have been confirmed by XRD, FTIR, FESEM and TEM microscopy. The (002) plane of graphene sheets are observed at 2θ of 25.66⁰. The (002) plane confirms the crystal structure of carbon peaks. The stretching vibration of C=C bond at a wavelength of 1577 cm-1 and other functional groups of carboxyl and epoxide groups have been observed from FTIR. TEM microscopy confirms the transparent structure of graphene sheets. The prepared graphene sheets were used as reinforcement in concentration of 0.1 g/L and 0.3 g/L with a copper matrix to synthesize Cu-Gr composite. The prepared composite thin films have been characterized by XRD, SEM and EDS for morphological and analytical study. The presence of graphene sheets in Cu-Gr composite was confirmed by EDS analysis. The prepared Cu-Gr nanocomposite thin film shows higher corrosion resistance as compared to pure copper thin films in 3.5% NaCl as confirmed by Tafel plots. EIS also compliments the above results, which shows that 0.3 g/L composite film has highest film resistance.
Research Article
Effects of forced aeration on community dynamics of free and attached bacteria in copper sulphide ore bioleaching
Sheng-hua Yin, Wei Chen, and I.M.S.K. Ilankoon
Available online 24 June 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2125-x
[Abstract](1494) [PDF 1535KB](18)
In order to obtain better bioleaching efficiency, bacterial community dynamics and copper leaching with applying forced aeration were investigated during low-grade copper sulphide bioleaching. Results illustrated appropriate aeration yielded improved bacteria concentrations and enhanced leaching efficiencies. The highest bacteria concentration and Cu2+ concentration after 14-day leaching were 7.61×107 cells•mL-1 and 704.9 mg•L-1, respectively, when aeration duration was 4 h•d-1. The attached bacteria played a significant role during bioleaching from day 1 to day 7. However, free bacteria dominated the bioleaching processes from day 8 to day 14. This is mainly caused by the formation of passivation layer through Fe3+ hydrolysis along with bioleaching, which inhibited the contact between attached bacteria and ore. Meanwhile, 16S rDNA analysis verified the effect of Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans and Acidithiobacillus thiooxidanson on bioleaching process. The results demonstrate the importance of free and attached bacteria in bioleaching.
Research Article
Microstructure evolution and mechanical properties of Mg-9Al-1Si-1SiC composites processed by multi-pass equal-channel angular pressing at various temperatures
Xiang-peng Zhang, Hong-xia Wang, Li-ping Bian, Shao-xiong Zhang, Yong-peng Zhuang, Wei-li Cheng, and Wei Liang
Available online 21 June 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2123-z
[Abstract](1554) [PDF 1275KB](22)
In this study, Mg-9Al-1Si-1SiC (wt%) composites were processed by multi-pass equal-channel angular pressing (ECAP) at various temperatures, and the microstructure evolution and strengthening mechanism were explored. The results indicate that the as-cast microstructure was composed of an α-Mg matrix, discontinuous Mg17Al12 phase, and Chinese script-shaped Mg2Si phase. After solution treatment, almost all of the Mg17Al12 phases are dissolved into the matrix, while the Mg2Si phases are not. The subsequent multi-pass ECAP at different temperatures results in more complete dynamic recrystallization and uniform distribution of Mg17Al12 precipitates when compared with the multi-pass ECAP at a constant temperature. A large number of precipitates can effectively improve the nucleation ratio of recrystallization through a particle-stimulated nucleation mechanism. In addition, the nano-scale SiC particles are mainly distributed at grain boundaries, which can effectively prevent dislocation movement. The excellent comprehensive mechanical properties are mainly attributed to grain boundary strengthening and Orowan strengthening.
Research Article
Hydrothermal synthesis of Zn-Mg based layered double hydroxide coating over copper for its corrosion prevention in both chloride and hydroxide media
Nikhil, Gopal Ji, and Rajiv Prakash
Available online 21 June 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2122-0
[Abstract](1641) [PDF 1066KB](16)
Layered double hydroxides (LDHs) can be very interesting materials in corrosion inhibition applications as LDHs stops the corrosive elements by its ability of double layer formation and locking them between its layers. In this work, Zn-Mg based LDHs are grown over copper substrate by hydrothermal method. Two types of Zn-Mg based LDHs have been prepared based on hydrothermal reaction time. Both LDHs have been characterized by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, Raman spectroscopy, high resolution scanning electron microscopy, energy dispersive X-ray analysis, atomic force microscopy and X-ray diffraction patterns. The results show that LDHs are successfully grown on copper; however, they are found different in terms of thickness and structural configuration. Corrosion testing of LDHs has been executed both in 0.1 M NaCl and 0.1 M NaOH by ac impedance measurements and Tafel polarization curves. The results show that L48 gives more than 90% protection to copper, which is higher than protection provided by L24. However, it is evident that both LDH (L24 and L48) is more effective in NaCl, in terms of reduction of corrosion. This information indicates that LDH is more efficient to exchange Cl- ions than OH- ions.
Research Article
Rapid Removal of the Copper Impurity from Bismuth-Copper Alloy Melts via Super-Gravity Separation
Xiao-chun Wen, Lei Guo, Qi-peng Bao, and Zhan-cheng Guo
Available online 17 June 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2118-9
[Abstract](1630) [PDF 1673KB](20)
To rapidly remove the copper impurity from bismuth-copper alloy melts, a green method of super-gravity separation was investigated, which has the characteristics of enhancing the filtration process of bismuth and copper phases. In this study, the influence of super-gravity on the removal of copper impurity from bismuth-copper alloy melts was discussed. After super-gravity separation, the liquid bismuth-rich phases were mainly filtered into the lower crucible, while most of the fine copper phases were remained in the opposite direction. With optimized conditions of T = 280℃, G = 450, and t = 200 s, the purity of the filtered bismuth phase exceeded 99.7wt%, and the mass proportion of the separated bismuth of Bi-2wt%Cu and Bi-10wt%Cu alloys reached 96.27wt% and 85.71wt% respectively, which indicated the little loss of bismuth in the residual. Simultaneously, the removal rate of copper impurity went to 88.0% and 97.8%, respectively. Furthermore, the separation process could be completed rapidly, environmentally friendly and efficiently.
Research Article
Microstructure evolution and thermal conductivity of the diamond/Al composite during thermal cycling
Ping-ping Wang, Guo-qin Chen, Wen-jun Li, Hui Li, Bo-yu Ju, Murid Hussain, Wen-shu Yang, and Gao-hui Wu
Available online 10 June 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2114-0
[Abstract](1883) [PDF 864KB](41)
The microstructure evolution and performance of Diamond/Al composites during thermal cycling, which is important for their wide application, has been rarely investigated. In the present work, the thermal stability of Diamond/Al composite during thermal cycling up to 200 cycles has been explored: thermal conductivity of the composites was measured, and SEM observation of the marked-out area of the same sample was carried out to achieve quasi-in-situ observation. The interface between (100) plane of diamond and Al matrix was well bonded with zigzag morphology and extensive needle-like Al4C3 phases. However, the interfacial bonding between (111) plane of diamond and Al matrix was rather weak, which was debonded during thermal cycling. The debonding length was initially increased rapidly within the initial 100 cycles, which was then increased slowly in the following 100 cycles. The thermal conductivity of the Diamond/Al composite was primarily decreased very abruptly within initial 20 cycles, increased afterward, and then further decreased monotonously with the increase of thermal cycles. The decreased thermal conductivity of the Al matrix and corresponding thermal stress concentration at the interface caused by the thermal mismatch stress is suggested as the main factor especially in the initial period rather than the interfacial debonding.
Research Article
Characterization of MCrAlY/nano-Al2O3 nanocomposite powder produced by high-energy mechanical-milling as feedstock for HVOF spraying deposition
Farzin Ghadami, A. Sabour Rouh Aghdam, and Soheil Ghadami
Available online 3 June 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2113-1
[Abstract](1745) [PDF 2466KB](34)
In this study, Al2O3 nanoparticles, as well as MCrAlY/nano-Al2O3 nanocomposite powder were produced using a high-energy ball-milling process. In addition, the MCrAlY/nano-Al2O3 coating was deposited by selecting an optimum nanocomposite powder as feedstock using high-velocity oxy-fuel (HVOF) thermal spraying technique. The morphological and microstructural examinations of Al2O3 nanoparticles, as well as the commercial MCrAlY and MCrAlY/nano-Al2O3 nanocomposite powders, were investigated using X-ray diffraction (XRD) analysis, field emission scanning electron microscope (FESEM) equipped with electron dispersed spectroscopy (EDS) analysis and transmission electron microscope (TEM). The structural investigations and Williamson-Hall results demonstrated that the ball-milled Al2O3 powder after 48 h has the smallest crystallite size and the highest amount of lattice strain compared to all other as-received and ball-milled Al2O3 owing to its optimal nanocrystalline structure. Besides, in the case of developing MCrAlY/nano-Al2O3 nanocomposite powder, with increasing mechanical-milling duration, the particle size of the nanocomposite powders was decreased.
Research Article
Effect of Co substitution on the structural, dielectric and optical properties of KBiFe2O5
K. Chandrakanta, Rasmita Jena, Pikesh Pal, Md. Faruck Abdullah, Somdatta D. Kaushik, and Anil K. Singh
Available online 31 May 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2110-4
[Abstract](1602) [PDF 1117KB](26)
Cobalt modified brownmillerite KBiFe2O5 [KBiFe2(1-x)Co2xO5 (x= 0, 0.05)] polycrystalline is synthesized following solid-state reaction route. Rietveld refinement of X-ray diffraction (XRD) data reveals the phase purity of KBiFe2O5 (KBFO) and KBiFe1.9Co0.1O5 (KBFCO). The optical band gap energy (Eg) of KBFO is observed to be decrease from 1.59 eV to 1.51 eV by Co substitution. The decrease in band gap attributes to the tilting in the Fe-O tetrahedral structure of KBFCO. The observed room temperature Raman peaks of KBFCO are shifted by 3 cm-1 towards lower wavenumber in comparison with KBFO Raman peaks. The shifting of Raman active modes can be attributed to the change in the bond angles and bond lengths of Fe-O tetrahedral and modification in oxygen deficiency in KBFO due to Co doping. The frequency-dependent dielectric constant and loss of KBFCO also decrease with respect to KBFO at room temperature, which is a consequence of the reduction in oxygen migration and modification in vibrational modes present in the sample.
Research Article
Kinetics and mechanism of oxidation for nickel-containing pyrrhotite tailings
Alexander M. Klyushnikov, Rosa I. Gulyaeva, Evgeniy N. Selivanov, and Sergey M. Pikalov
Available online 27 May 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2109-x
[Abstract](1930) [PDF 796KB](19)
Abstract: X-ray powder diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, energy dispersive spectroscopy, thermogravimetry, differential scanning calorimetry and mass spectrometry have been used to study the products of nickel-containing pyrrhotite tailings oxidation by the oxygen in the air. The kinetic triplets of oxidation, such as activation energy (Ea), pre-exponential factor (A) and reaction model (f(α)) being a function of the conversion degree (α), were adjusted by the regression analysis. In case of a two-stage process representation, the first step proceeds under autocatalysis control and ends at α = 0.42. The kinetic triplet of the first step can be presented as Ea = 262.2 kJ/mol, lgA = 14.53 s-1, f(α) = (1 – α)4.11(1 + 1.51·10–4α). For the second step, the process is controlled by the two-dimensional diffusion of the reactants in the layer of oxidation products. The kinetic triplet of the second step: Еa = 215.0 kJ/mol, lgA = 10.28 s-1, f(α) = (–ln(1 – α))–1. The obtained empirical formulae for the rate of pyrrhotite tailings oxidation reliably describe the macro-mechanism of the process and can be used to design automatization systems for roasting these materials.
Research Article
Effect of microwave pretreatment on grinding and flotation kinetics of copper complex ore
Hamed Gholami, Bahram Rezai, Ahmad Hassanzadeh, Akbar Mehdilo, and Mohammadreza Yarahmadi
Available online 24 May 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2106-0
[Abstract](2005) [PDF 692KB](46)
The present work initially studies the kinetics of microwave-assisted grinding and flotation in a porphyry copper deposit. The kinetics tests were carried out on the untreated and microwave irradiated samples by varying the exposure time from 15-150 sec. Optical microscopy, energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy and scanning electron microscopy were used for determining the mineral liberation, particle surface properties and mineralogical analyses. Results disclosed that the ore’s breakage rate constant monotonically increased by increasing the exposure time particularly for the coarsest fraction size (400 µm) owing to the creation of thermal stress fractures alongside grain boundaries. Exceeded irradiation time (>60 sec) led to the creation of oxidized and porous surfaces along with a dramatic change of particle morphologies resulting in a substantial reduction of both chalcopyrite and pyrite’s flotation rate constants and ultimate recoveries. We concluded that MW-pretreated copper ore was ground faster than untreated one but their floatabilities were somewhat similar.
Research Article
Reduction of NOx emission based on optimizing the proportions of mill scale and coke breeze during sintering process
Zhi-gang Que, Xian-bin Ai, and Sheng-li Wu
Available online 21 May 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2103-3
[Abstract](1605) [PDF 551KB](47)
How to cost-effectively reduce NOx emission of iron ore sintering process is a new challenge for iron and steel industry at present. The effects of proportion of mill scale and coke breeze on the NOx emission, strength of sinter and sinter indexes were studied by combustion tests and sinter pot tests. Results showed that the fuel-N’s conversion rate decreased with increasing of the proportions of mill scale. Because NO was reduced to N2 by Fe3O4, FeO and Fe in mill scale. The strength of sinter reached a highest value at 8.0 wt% mill scale due to the formation of low melting point minerals. Meanwhile, the fuel-N’s conversion rate slightly increased and total NOx emission significantly decreased with the proportions of coke breeze increased. Because CO formation and contents of N element in sintered mixture decreased. However, the strength of sinter was also decreased since the decreasing of the melting minerals. In addition, results of sinter pot tests indicated that NOx emission obviousely decreased and sinter indexes have good performances when the proportions of mill scale and coke breeze were 8.0 wt% and 3.70 wt% in sintered mixture.
Research Article
Adsorption properties of V(IV) on the resin-activated carbon composite electrodes in capacitive deionization
Xiao-man Tian, Shen-xu Bao, and Yi-min Zhang
Available online 17 May 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2100-6
[Abstract](1612) [PDF 928KB](18)
The composite electrodes prepared by cation exchange resins and activated carbon (AC) were used to adsorb V(IV) in capacitive deionization (CDI). The electrode made of middle resin size (D860/AC M) has the largest specific surface area and mesoporous content than other two composite electrodes. Electrochemical analysis showed that D860/AC M presents higher specific capacitance and electrical double layer capacitor, and significantly lower internal diffusion impedance, thus it exhibits the highest adsorption capacity and rate for V(IV) among three electrodes. The intra-particle diffusion model fits well the initial adsorption stage, while the liquid film diffusion model is more suitable for the fitting at the later stage. The pseudo-second-order kinetic model is fit for the entire adsorption process. The adsorption of V(IV) on the composite electrode follows the Freundlich isotherm, and thermodynamic analysis indicates that this is an exothermic process with entropy reduction and the electric field force plays a dominant role in the CDI process. This work is conducive to peep at the ions adsorption behaviors and mechanisms on the composite electrodes in CDI.
Research Article
Study on the shape of slab solidification end and its influence on the central-line segregation
Jie Li, Yan-hui Sun, Hang-hang An, and Pei-yuan Ni
Available online 9 May 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2089-x
[Abstract](1657) [PDF 1059KB](21)
A solidification model of a continuous casting slab with non-uniform cooling condition was established with the ProCAST software. The model was verified by the results of the nail shooting tests and the infrared temperature measurement equipment. It was found that the final solidification position was 220 to 440 mm away from the edge of the slab width for 200 mm × 2300 mm section based on the simulation results. In addition, four characteristic parameters were defined to evaluate the uniformity of the shape of slab solidification end. Then the effects of casting speed, superheat and secondary cooling strength on these four parameters were discussed. Moreover, the central-line segregation of slab produced with and without the soft reduction process were investigated. The results show that, the transverse flow of molten steel with low solid fraction had an important effect on the central-line segregation morphology under the soft reduction.
Research Article
Effect of multi-pass friction stir processing and Mg addition on microstructure and tensile properties of Al-1050 alloy
Shahin Arshadi Rastabi and Masoud Mosallaee
Available online 24 April 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2074-4
[Abstract](1675) [PDF 3910KB](36)
The effect of multiple passes of friction stir processing (FSP) and the addition of Mg powder on different parts of the microstrcuture processed including the stir zone (SZ), the heat-affected zone (HAZ), and the thermo-mechanically affected zone (TMAZ) were investigated. The results of the microstructural observations revealed that although the grain size of the SZ decreased in both the non-composite and composite samples, the grain size increased in the TMAZ and the HAZ of the non-composit sample with increasing the numer of FSP passes. Besides, the addition of Mg powder resulted in much more significant grain refinement. Moreover, increasing the number of the FSP passes resulted in a more uniform distribution of Al-Mg intermetallic compounds in the in-situ composite sample. The results of the tensile testing showed that the four- passes FSPed non-composite sample exhibited a higher elongation percentage with a ductile fracture compared with those of the base metal and the four-pass composite sample while lattermost sample exhibited a brittle fracture and a higher tensile strength value than the base metal and the four-pass FSPed non-composite sample. The fabrication of composite samples resulted in noticeable enhancement of hardness compared with the base metal and the non-composite FSPed samples.
Research Article
Fabrication and properties of silver-based composites reinforced with carbon-coated Ti3AlC2
Yong-fa Zhu, Wu-bian Tian, Dan-dan Wang, Heng Zhang, Jian-xiang Ding, Pei-gen Zhang, and Zheng-ming Sun
Available online 12 April 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2064-6
[Abstract](1684) [PDF 1558KB](9)
Ti3AlC2 reinforced Ag-based composites are used as sliding current collectors, electrical contacts and electrode materials, which shows remarkable performance. However, the interfacial reactions between Ag and Ti3AlC2 significantly deteriorate the electrical and thermal properties of the composite. To alleviate the interfacial reactions, carbon-coated Ti3AlC2 particles (C@Ti3AlC2) were fabricated as reinforcement. Ag-10wt.% C@Ti3AlC2 composites with carbon layer thickness of 50-200 nm were prepared. Compared with the uncoated Ag-Ti3AlC2 composite, Ag-C@Ti3AlC2 exhibits a better distribution of Ti3AlC2 particles. With the increase of carbon layer thickness, the Vickers hardness and relative density of Ag-C@Ti3AlC2 decline gradually. The lowest resistivity of Ag-C@Ti3AlC2 reaches 29.4×10-9 Ω·m with the carbon layer thickness of 150 nm, half of the Ag-Ti3AlC2 (66.7×10-9 Ω·m). The thermal conductivity of Ag-C@Ti3AlC2 reaches a maximum value of 135.5 W·m-1·K-1 with a 200-nm carbon coating (~1.8 times over that of the Ag-Ti3AlC2). These results indicate that carbon coating method is a feasible strategy to improve the performance of Ag-C@Ti3AlC2 composites.
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Editorial for special issue on metallurgical process engineering and intelligent manufacturing
An-jun Xu and Yan-ping Bao
  Available online 27 July 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2333-z
[FullText HTML](8) [PDF 416KB](1) SpringerLink
Research Article
Intelligent logistics system of steel bar warehouse based on ubiquitous information
Hai-nan He, Xiao-chen Wang, Gong-zhuang Peng, Dong Xu, Yang Liu, Min Jiang, Ze-dong Wu, Da Zhang, and He Yan
  Available online 7 July 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2325-z
[FullText HTML](30) [PDF 1423KB](4) SpringerLink
Internet of Things and artificial intelligence technology are the key elements of the intelligent construction of iron and steel production warehouse. This paper puts forward a whole set of intelligent scheme for bar warehouse crane for the guidance of metallurgical process engineering, including cluster rapid self-awareness technology of the smart crane, precise self-executing technique of crane with rigid-flexible hybrid structure, multi-body system kinematics model of the smart crane sling and the swing characteristics model at different azimuth, anti-swing control technology based on the optimization objective function, the vehicle model recognition system based on lidar, and the clustering crane dynamic scheduling method based on multi-agent reinforcement learning. The complete intelligent logistics system of the bar warehouse has changed the original operation mode of the warehouse area and realized the unmanned operation and intelligent scheduling of the crane, which is of great significance for improving the production efficiency, reducing the production cost, and improving the product quality.
Research Article
Mn evaporation and denitrification behaviors of molten Mn steel in the vacuum refining with slag process
Jian-hua Chu and Yan-ping Bao
  Available online 5 June 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2311-5
[FullText HTML](80) [PDF 1875KB](14) SpringerLink
Considering the precise composition control on the vacuum refining of high-Mn steel, the behaviors of both Mn evaporation and nitrogen removal from molten Mn steel were investigated via vacuum slag refining in a vacuum induction furnace. It was found that the reaction interfaces of denitrification and Mn evaporation tend to migrate from the surface of slag layer to the surface of molten steel with the gradual exposure of molten steel during the vacuum slag refining process. Significantly, compared with the experimental group without slag addition, the addition of slag into steel can result in a lower Mn evaporation rate constant of 0.0192 cm·min−1 at 370 Pa, while the denitrification rate is almost not affected. Besides, the slag has a stronger inhibitory effect on Mn evaporation than the reduced vacuum pressure. Moreover, the inhibitory effect of the slag layer on Mn evaporation can be weakened with the increase of the initial Mn content in molten steel. The slag layer can work as an inhibitory layer to reduce the Mn evaporation from molten steel, the evaporation reaction of Mn mainly proceeds on the surface of the molten steel. This may be attributed to the Mn mass transfer coefficient for one of reaction at steel/slag interface, mass transfer in molten slag, and evaporation reaction at slag/gas interface is lower than that of evaporation reaction at steel/gas interface. The introduction of slag is proposed for both denitrification and manganese control during the vacuum refining process of Mn steels.
Research Article
Multiproduct and multistage integrated production planning model and algorithm based on an available production capacity network
Zhi-min Lü, Tian-ru Jiang, and Zai-wei Li
  Available online 1 June 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2310-6
[FullText HTML](58) [PDF 1362KB](8) SpringerLink
This research attempts to devise a multistage and multiproduct short-term integrative production plan that can dynamically change based on the order priority and virtual occupancy for application in steel plants. Considering factors such as the delivery time, varietal compatibility between different products, production capacity of variety per hour, minimum or maximum batch size, and transfer time, we propose an available production capacity network with varietal compatibility and virtual occupancy for enhancing production plan implementation and quick adjustment in the case of dynamic production changes. Here available means the remaining production capacity after virtual occupancy. To quickly build an available production capacity network and increase the speed of algorithm solving, constraint selection and cutting methods with order priority were used for model solving. Finally, the genetic algorithm improved with local search was used to optimize the proposed production plan and significantly reduce the order delay rate. The validity of the proposed model and algorithm was numerically verified by simulating actual production practices. The simulation results demonstrate that the model and improved algorithm result in an effective production plan.
Research Article
Dynamic mass variation and multiphase interaction among steel, slag, lining refractory and nonmetallic inclusions: Laboratory experiments and mathematical prediction
Ju-jin Wang, Li-feng Zhang, Gong Cheng, Qiang Ren, and Ying Ren
  Available online 13 May 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2304-4
[FullText HTML](100) [PDF 2022KB](25) SpringerLink
The mass transfer among the multiphase interactions among the steel, slag, lining refractory, and nonmetallic inclusions during the refining process of a bearing steel was studied using laboratory experiments and numerical kinetic prediction. Experiments on the system with and without the slag phase were carried out to evaluate the influence of the refractory and the slag on the mass transfer. A mathematical model coupled the ion and molecule coexistence theory, coupled-reaction model, and the surface renewal theory was established to predict the dynamic mass transfer and composition transformation of the steel, the slag, and nonmetallic inclusions in the steel. During the refining process, Al2O3 inclusions transformed into MgO inclusions owing to the mass transfer of [Mg] at the steel/refractory interface and (MgO) at the slag/refractory interface. Most of the aluminum involved in the transport entered the slag and a small part of the aluminum transferred to lining refractory, forming the Al2O3 or MgO·Al2O3. The slag had a significant acceleration effect on the mass transfer. The mass transfer rate (or the reaction rate) of the system with the slag was approximately 5 times larger than that of the system without the slag. In the first 20 min of the refining, rates of magnesium mass transfer at the steel/inclusion interface, steel/refractory interface, and steel/slag interface were x, 1.1x, and 2.2x, respectively. The composition transformation of inclusions and the mass transfer of magnesium and aluminum in the steel were predicted with an acceptable accuracy using the established kinetic model.
Research Article
Multi-objective quality control method for cold-rolled products oriented to customized requirements
Yi-fan Yan and Zhi-min Lü
  Available online 20 April 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2292-4
[FullText HTML](112) [PDF 1290KB](13) SpringerLink
To deal with the increasing demand for low-volume customization of the mechanical properties of cold-rolled products, a two-way control method based on mechanical property prediction and process parameter optimization (PPO) has become an effective solution. Aiming at the multi-objective quality control problem of a company’s cold-rolled products, based on industrial production data, we proposed a process parameter design and optimization method that combined multi-objective quality prediction and PPO. This method used the multi-output support vector regression (MSVR) method to simultaneously predict multiple quality indices. The MSVR prediction model was used as the effect verification model of the PPO results. It performed multi-process parameter collaborative design and realized the optimization of production process parameters for customized multi-objective quality requirements. The experimental results showed that, compared with the traditional single-objective quality prediction model based on support vector regression (SVR), the multi-objective prediction model could better take into account the coupling effect between process parameters and quality index, the MSVR model prediction accuracy was higher than that of the SVR, and the optimized process parameters were more capable and reflected the influence of metallurgical mechanism on the quality index, which were more in line with actual production process requirements.
Research Article
Visualization and simulation of steel metallurgy processes
Te Xu, Guang Song, Yang Yang, Pei-xin Ge, and Li-xin Tang
  Available online 24 March 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2283-5
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Steel production involves the transfer and transformation of material and energy at different levels, structures, and scales, and this process incurs substantial information in the material and energy dimensions. Given the black-box feature of iron and steel production processes, process visualization plays an important role and inevitably benefits parameter correction, technical support decision-making, personnel training, and other aspects of the steel metallurgy industry. The technological characteristics of the entire process in the steel industry were analyzed in this study, a visualization technology route based on virtual reality (VR) was built, and the important components of visual simulation system for steel industry and the important technical points needed to realize the system were proposed. On the foundation, a visual simulation model for the process scheduling of the iron and steel enterprise raw materials’ field, slab, and hot rolling processes was built, and a visualization simulation platform of the iron and steel metallurgy plant-wide process, including ironmaking, steelmaking, hot rolling, and cold rolling, was developed. Lastly, the effectiveness of platform was illustrated by practical application.
Research Article
Multi-energy synergistic optimization in steelmaking process based on energy hub concept
Shuai Liu, Sheng Xie, and Qi Zhang
  Available online 23 March 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2281-7
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The production process of iron and steel is accompanied by a large amount of energy production and consumption. Optimal scheduling and utilization of these energies within energy systems are crucial to realize a reduction in the cost, energy use, and CO2 emissions. However, it is difficult to model and schedule energy usage within steel works because different types of energy and devices are involved. The energy hub (EH), as a universal modeling frame, is widely used in multi-energy systems to improve its efficiency, flexibility, and reliability. This paper proposed an efficient multi-layer model based on the EH concept, which is designed to systematically model the energy system and schedule energy within steelworks to meet the energy demand. Besides, to simulate the actual working conditions of the energy devices, the method of fitting the curve is used to describe the efficiency of the energy devices. Moreover, to evaluate the applicability of the proposed model, a case study is conducted to minimize both the economic operation cost and CO2 emissions. The optimal results demonstrated that the model is suitable for energy systems within steel works. Further, the economic operation cost decreased by 3.41%, and CO2 emissions decreased by approximately 3.67%.
Invited review
Operation optimization of the steel manufacturing process: A brief review
Zhao-jun Xu, Zhong Zheng, and Xiao-qiang Gao
  Available online 27 February 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2273-7
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Against the realistic background of excess production capacity, product structure imbalance, and high material and energy consumption in steel enterprises, the implementation of operation optimization for the steel manufacturing process is essential to reduce the production cost, increase the production or energy efficiency, and improve production management. In this study, the operation optimization problem of the steel manufacturing process, which needed to go through a complex production organization from customers' orders to workshop production, was analyzed. The existing research on the operation optimization techniques, including process simulation, production planning, production scheduling, interface scheduling, and scheduling of auxiliary equipment, was reviewed. The literature review reveals that, although considerable research has been conducted to optimize the operation of steel production, these techniques are usually independent and unsystematic. Therefore, the future work related to operation optimization of the steel manufacturing process based on the integration of multi technologies and the intersection of multi disciplines were summarized.
Research Article
Synthesis, characterization and radioluminescence properties of erbium-doped yttria phosphors
Fatma Unal, Faruk Kaya, and Kursat Kazmanli
  Available online 22 February 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-021-2269-3
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Radioluminescence (RL) behaviour of erbium-doped yttria nanoparticles (Y2O3:Er3+ NPs) which were produced by sol–gel method was reported for future scintillator applications. NPs with dopant rates of 1at%, 5at%, 10at% and 20at% Er were produced and calcined at 800°C, and effect of increased calcination temperature (1100°C) on the RL behaviour was also reported. X-ray diffraction (XRD) results showed that all phosphors had the cubic Y2O3 bixbyite-type structure. The lattice parameters, crystallite sizes (CS), and lattice strain values were calculated by Cohen-Wagner (C-W) and Williamson-Hall (W-H) methods, respectively. Additionally, the optimum solubility value of the Er3+ dopant ion in the Y2O3 host lattice was calculated to be approximately 4at% according to Vegard’s law, which was experimentally obtained from the 5at% Er3+ ion containing solution. Both peak shifts in XRD patterns and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) analyses confirmed that Er3+ dopant ions were successfully incorporated into the Y2O3 host structure. High-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM) results verified the average CS values and agglomerated NPs morphologies were revealed. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) results showed the neck formation between the particles due to increased calcination temperature. As a result of the RL measurements under a Cu Kα X-ray radiation (wavelength, λ = 0.154 nm) source with 50 kV and 10 mA beam current, it was determined that the highest RL emission belonged to 5at% Er doped sample. In the RL emission spectrum, the emission peaks were observed in the wavelength ranges of 510–575 nm (2H11/2, 4S3/24I15/2; green emission) and 645–690 nm (4F9/24I15/2; red emission). The emission peaks at 581, 583, 587, 593, 601, 611 and 632 nm wavelengths were also detected. It was found that both dopant rate and calcination temperature affected the RL emission intensity. The color shifted from red to green with increasing calcination temperature which was attributed to the increased crystallinity and reduced crystal defects.
Invited Review
Consideration of green intelligent steel processes and narrow window stability control technology on steel quality
Lu Lin and Jia-qing Zeng
  Available online 1 January 2021, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2246-2
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In order to promote the intelligent transformation and upgrading of the steel industry, intelligent technology features based on the current situation and challenges of the steel industry are discussed in this paper. Based on both domestic and global research, functional analysis, reasonable positioning, and process optimization of each aspect of steel making are expounded. The current state of molten steel quality and implementation under narrow window control is analyzed. A method for maintaining stability in the narrow window control technology of steel quality is proposed, controlled by factors including composition, temperature, time, cleanliness, and consumption (raw material). Important guidance is provided for the future development of a green and intelligent steel manufacturing process.
Invited Review
Review of electrochemical degradation of phenolic compounds
You Xue, Xi Hu, Qian Sun, Hong-yang Wang, Hai-long Wang, and Xin-mei Hou
  Available online 16 December 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2241-7
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Phenolic compounds are widely present in domestic and industrial sewage and have serious environmental hazards. Electrochemical oxidation (EO) is one of the most promising methods for sewage degradation because of its high efficiency, environmental compatibility, and safety. In this work, we present an in-depth overview of the mechanism and factors affecting the degradation of phenolic compounds by EO. In particular, the effects of treatment of phenolic compounds with different anode materials are discussed in detail. The non-active anode shows higher degradation efficiency, less intermediate accumulation, and lower energy consumption than the active anode. EO combined with other treatment methods (biological, photo, and Fenton) presents advantages, such as low energy consumption and high degradation rate. Meanwhile, the remaining drawbacks of the EO process in the phenolic compound treatment system have been discussed. Furthermore, future research directions are put forward to improve the feasibility of the practical application of EO technology.
Research Article
Development of an improved CBR model for predicting steel temperature in ladle furnace refining
Fei Yuan, An-jun Xu, and Mao-qiang Gu
  Available online 8 December 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2234-6
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In the prediction of the end-point molten steel temperature of the ladle furnace, the influence of some factors is nonlinear. The prediction accuracy will be affected by directly inputting these nonlinear factors into the data-driven model. To solve this problem, an improved case-based reasoning model based on heat transfer calculation (CBR-HTC) was established through the nonlinear processing of these factors with software Ansys. The results showed that the CBR-HTC model improves the prediction accuracy of end-point molten steel temperature by 5.33% and 7.00% compared with the original CBR model and 6.66% and 5.33% compared with the back propagation neural network (BPNN) model in the ranges of [−3, 3] and [−7, 7], respectively. It was found that the mean absolute error (MAE) and root-mean-square error (RMSE) values of the CBR-HTC model are also lower. It was verified that the prediction accuracy of the data-driven model can be improved by combining the mechanism model with the data-driven model.
Research Article
Tuning Li3PO4 modification on the electrochemical performance of nickel-rich LiNi0.6Co0.2Mn0.2O2
Zhi-kun Zhao, Hui-lin Xie, Zi-yue Wen, Ling Liu, Bo-rong Wu, Shi Chen, Dao-bin Mu, and Chao-xiang Xie
  Available online 28 November 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2232-8
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Surface deterioration occurs more easily in nickel-rich cathode materials with the increase of nickel content. To simultaneously prevent deterioration of active cathode materials and improve the electrochemical performance of the nickel-rich cathode material, the surface of nickel-rich LiNi0.6Co0.2Mn0.2O2 cathode material is decorated with the stable structure and conductive Li3PO4 by a facile method. The LiNi0.6Co0.2Mn0.2O2–1wt%, 2wt%, 3wt%Li3PO4 samples deliver a high-capacity retention of more than 85% after 100 cycles at 1 C under a high voltage of 4.5 V. The effect of different coating amounts (0–5wt%) for the LiNi0.6Co0.2Mn0.2O2 cathode is analyzed in detail. Results show that 2wt% coating of Li3PO4 gives better performance compared to other coating concentrations. Detailed analysis of the structure of the samples during the charge–discharge process is performed by in-situ X-ray diffraction. It is indicated that the modification for LiNi0.6Co0.2Mn0.2O2 cathode could protect the well-layered structure under high voltages. In consequence, the electrochemical performance of modified samples is greatly improved.
Research Article
Quantitative evaluation of multi-process collaborative operation in steelmaking–continuous casting sections
Jian-ping Yang, Qing Liu, Wei-da Guo, and Jun-guo Zhang
  Available online 26 November 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2227-5
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The quantitative evaluation of multi-process collaborative operation is of great significance for the improvement of production planning and scheduling in steelmaking–continuous casting sections (SCCSs). However, this evaluation is difficult since it relies on an in-depth understanding of the operating mechanism of SCCSs, and few existing methods can be used to conduct the evaluation, due to the lack of full-scale consideration of the multiple factors related to the production operation. In this study, three quantitative models were developed, and the multi-process collaborative operation level was evaluated through the laminar-flow operation degree, the process matching degree, and the scheduling strategy availability degree. Based on the evaluation models for the laminar-flow operation and process matching levels, this study investigated the production status of two steelmaking plants, plants A and B, based on actual production data. The average laminar-flow operation (process matching) degrees of SCCSs were obtained as 0.638 (0.610) and 1.000 (0.759) for plants A and B, respectively, for the period of April to July 2019. Then, a scheduling strategy based on the optimization of the furnace-caster coordinating mode was suggested for plant A. Simulation experiments showed higher availability than the greedy-based and manual strategies. After the proposed scheduling strategy was applied, the average process matching degree of the SCCS of plant A increased by 4.6% for the period of September to November 2019. The multi-process collaborative operation level was improved with fewer adjustments and interruptions in casting.
Invited Review
Review on the study of metallurgical process engineering
Rui-yu Yin
  Available online 8 November 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2220-z
[FullText HTML](722) [PDF 1924KB](28) SpringerLink
After nearly one hundred years of research, metallurgy (metallurgical science and engineering) has gradually become a system with three levels of knowledge: (1) micro metallurgy at the atomic/molecular scale, (2) process metallurgy at the procedure/device, and (3) macro-dynamic metallurgy at the full process/process group. Macro-dynamic metallurgy development must eliminate the concept of an “isolated system” and establish concepts of “flow,” “process network,” and “operating program” to study the “structure–function–efficiency” in the macro-dynamic operation of metallurgical manufacturing processes. It means considering “flow” as the ontology and observing dynamic change by “flow” to solve the green and intelligent potential of metallurgical enterprises. Metallurgical process engineering is integrated metallurgy, top-level designed metallurgy, macro-dynamic operated metallurgy, and engineering science level metallurgy. Metallurgical process engineering is a cross-level, comprehensive, and integrated study of the macro-dynamic operation of manufacturing processes. Metallurgical process engineering studies the physical nature and constitutive characteristics of the dynamic operation of steel manufacturing process, as well as the analysis-optimization of the set of procedure functions, coordination-optimization of the set of procedures’ relations, and reconstruction-optimization of the set of procedures in the manufacturing process. The study establishes rules for the macro operation of the manufacturing process, as well as dynamic and precise objectives of engineering design and production operation.
Research Article
Reduction of residual stress in porous Ti6Al4V by in situ double scanning during laser additive manufacturing
Yi-wa Luo, Ming-yong Wang, Ji-guo Tu, Yu Jiang, and Shu-qiang Jiao
  Available online 20 October 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2212-z
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Selective laser melting (SLM) technology plays an important role in the preparation of porous titanium (Ti) implants with complex structures and precise sizes. Unfortunately, the processing characteristics of this technology, which include rapid melting and solidification, lead to products with high residual stress. Herein, an in situ method was developed to restrain the residual stress and improve the mechanical strength of porous Ti alloys during laser additive manufacturing. In brief, porous Ti6Al4V was prepared by an SLM three-dimensional (3D) printer equipped with a double laser system that could rescan each layer immediately after solidification of the molten powder, thus reducing the temperature gradient and avoiding rapid melting and cooling. Results indicated that double scanning can provide stronger bonding conditions for the honeycomb structure and improve the yield strength and elastic modulus of the alloy. Rescanning with an energy density of 75% resulted in 33.5%–38.0% reductions in residual stress. The porosities of double-scanned specimens were 2%–4% lower than those of single-scanned specimens, and the differences noted increased with increasing sheet thickness. The rescanning laser power should be reduced during the preparation of porous Ti with thick cell walls to ensure dimensional accuracy.
Research Article
Effects of Si/Al, Na/Al, and H2O/Na2O molar ratios on formaldehyde barrier properties of inorganic aluminosilicate coatings
Shan-xia Xiong, Jian-lei Kuang, Qian-fang Zheng, Ting Xiao, Wen-xiu Liu, Qi Wang, Peng Jiang, and Wen-bin Cao
  Available online 19 September 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2197-7
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Wood-based panels containing urea-formaldehyde resin result in the long-term release of formaldehyde and threaten human health. In this study, inorganic aluminosilicate coatings prepared by combining metakaolin, silica fume, NaOH, and H2O were applied to the surfaces of wood-based panels to obstruct formaldehyde release. The Si/Al, Na/Al, and H2O/Na2O molar ratios of the coatings were regulated to investigate their effects on the structure and formaldehyde-resistant barrier properties of coatings. Results showed that the cracks in the coatings gradually disappeared and the formaldehyde resistance rates of the barrier increased as the Si/Al molar ratio was increased from 1.6 to 2.2. This value also increased as the Na/Al molar ratio was increased from 0.9 to 1.2 because of the improvement of the degree of polymerization. As the H2O/Na2O molar ratio was increased from 12 to 15, the thickness of the dry film decreased gradually and led to the reduction in the formaldehyde resistance rate. When the Si/Al, Na/Al, and H2O/Na2O molar ratios were 2.2, 1.2, and 12, respectively, the inorganic aluminosilicate coating showed good performance as a formaldehyde-resistant barrier and its formaldehyde resistance rate could reach up to 83.2%.
Research Article
Fractal and microscopic quantitative characterization of unclassified tailings flocs
Di Zheng, Wei-dong Song, Yu-ye Tan, Shuai Cao, Zi-long Yang, and Li-juan Sun
  Available online 3 September 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2181-2
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A series of laboratory investigations are conducted to analyze the effect of flocculant type on the spatial morphology and microstructural characteristics of flocs during the flocculation and settling of tailings. Four flocculant types (i.e., ZYZ, JYC-2, ZYD, and JYC-1) are considered in this study. The fractal characteristics and internal structures of tailings flocs with different flocculant types and settlement heights are analyzed by conducting scanning electron microscopy and X-ray micro-computed tomography scanning experiments based on the fractal theory. Results show that unclassified tailings flocs are irregular clusters with fractal characteristics, and the flocculation effect of the four flocculant types has the following trend: ZYZ > JYC-2 > ZYD > JYC-1. The size and average grayscale value of tailings flocs decrease with the increase in settlement height. The average grayscale values at the top and bottom are 144 and 103, respectively. The settlement height remarkably affects the pore distribution pattern, as reflected in the constructed three-dimensional pore model of tailings flocs. The top part of flocs has relatively good penetration, whereas the bottom part of flocs has mostly dispersed pores. The number of pores increases exponentially with the increase in settlement height. By contrast, the size of pores initially increases and subsequently decreases with the increase in settlement height.
Research Article
Separation of tungsten and molybdenum with solvent extraction using functionalized ionic liquid tricaprylmethylammonium bis(2,4,4-trimethylpentyl)phosphinate
Fei Cao, Wei Wang, De-zhou Wei, and Wen-gang Liu
  Available online 27 August 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2172-3
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Functionalized ionic liquids (FILs) as extractants were employed for the separation of tungsten and molybdenum from a sulfate solution for the first time. The effects of initial pH, extractant concentration, metal concentrations in the feed were comprehensively investigated. The results showed that tricaprylmethylammonium bis(2,4,4-trimethylpentyl)phosphinate ([A336][Cyanex272]) could selectively extract W over Mo at an initial pH value of 5.5; the best separation factor βW/Mo of 25.61 was obtained for a solution with low metal concentrations (WO3: 2.49 g/L, Mo: 1.04 g/L). The [A336][Cyanex272] system performed effectively for solutions of different W/Mo molar ratios and different metal ion concentrations in the feed. The chemical reaction between [A336][Cyanex272] and W followed the ion association mechanism, which was further proved by the Fourier-transform infrared (FTIR) spectra of loaded [A336][Cyanex272] and the free extractant. The stripping experiments indicated that 95.48% W and 100.00% Mo were stripped using a 0.20 mol/L sodium hydroxide solution. Finally, the selective extractions of W and Mo from two synthetic solutions of different high metal concentrations were obtained; the separation factor βW/Mo reached 23.24 and 17.59 for the first and second solutions, respectively. The results suggest the feasibility of [A336][Cyanex272] as an extractant for the separation of tungsten and molybdenum.
Research Article
Prediction of the Charpy V-notch impact energy of low carbon steel using a shallow neural network and deep learning
Si-wei Wu, Jian Yang, and Guang-ming Cao
  Available online 14 August 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2168-z
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The impact energy prediction model of low carbon steel was investigated based on industrial data. A three-layer neural network, extreme learning machine, and deep neural network were compared with different activation functions, structure parameters, and training functions. Bayesian optimization was used to determine the optimal hyper-parameters of the deep neural network. The model with the best performance was applied to investigate the importance of process parameter variables on the impact energy of low carbon steel. The results show that the deep neural network obtains better prediction results than those of a shallow neural network because of the multiple hidden layers improving the learning ability of the model. Among the models, the Bayesian optimization deep neural network achieves the highest correlation coefficient of 0.9536, the lowest mean absolute relative error of 0.0843, and the lowest root mean square error of 17.34 J for predicting the impact energy of low carbon steel. Among the variables, the main factors affecting the impact energy of low carbon steel with a final thickness of 7.5 mm are the thickness of the original slab, the thickness of intermediate slab, and the rough rolling exit temperature from the specific hot rolling production line.
Research Article
Strain hardening behavior, strain rate sensitivity and hot deformation maps of AISI 321 austenitic stainless steel
Mehdi Shaban Ghazani and Beitallah Eghbali
  Available online 10 August 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2163-4
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Hot compression tests were performed on AISI 321 austenitic stainless steel in the deformation temperature range of 800–1200°C and constant strain rates of 0.001, 0.01, 0.1, and 1 s−1. Hot flow curves were used to determine the strain hardening exponent and the strain rate sensitivity exponent, and to construct the processing maps. Variations of the strain hardening exponent with strain were used to predict the microstructural evolutions during the hot deformation. Four variations were distinguished reflecting the different microstructural changes. Based on the analysis of the strain hardening exponent versus strain curves, the microstructural evolutions were dynamic recovery, single and multiple peak dynamic recrystallization, and interactions between dynamic recrystallization and precipitation. The strain rate sensitivity variations at an applied strain of 0.8 and strain rate of 0.1 s−1 were compared with the microstructural evolutions. The results demonstrate the existence of a reliable correlation between the strain rate sensitivity values and evolved microstructures. Additionally, the power dissipation map at the applied strain of 0.8 was compared with the resultant microstructures at predetermined deformation conditions. The microstructural evolutions strongly correlated to the power dissipation ratio, and dynamic recrystallization occurred completely at lower power dissipation ratios.
Research Article
Gold-leaching performance and mechanism of sodium dicyanamide
Gen-zhuang Li, Jue Kou, Yi Xing, Yang Hu, Wei Han, Zi-yuan Liu, and Chun-bao Sun
  Available online 26 July 2020, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12613-020-2153-6
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