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Materials | Materials Journals, Academic Books & Online Media | Springer

Sapphire Prize Winner Announced

Eli A. Sutter and Peter W. Sutter win prize for their outstanding paper on giant carbon solubility

WINNING PAPER! November: Giant carbon solubility in Au nanoparticles 

Eli A. Sutter and Peter W. Sutter

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From the issue entitled "Special Section: Size Dependent Effects; Guest Editor: Radostina Stoyanova"
...Using the assembly of ordered graphene shells on the surface of individual nanoparticles at elevated temperatures—and the high pressures induced by such shells—as an experimental tool to study the origins of this swelling, we find that the volume increase is associated with the uptake of carbon to concentrations exceeding the bulk solubility by more than four orders of magnitude...

2ND PRIZE! January: Connecting the macro- and microstrain responses in technical porous ceramics: modeling and experimental validations  

Giovanni Bruno, Alexander M. Efremov, Andreyi N. Levandovskyi and Bjorn Clausen

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The relation between the macroscopic and the microscopic (lattice) strain response to external uniaxial stress has been investigated for porous ceramics...

2ND PRIZE! July: A1-L12 interfacial free energies from data on coarsening in five binary Ni alloys, informed by thermodynamic phase diagram assessments  

Alan J. Ardell

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The data on coarsening of γ′-type precipitates (Ni3X, with the L12 crystal structure) in Ni–Al, Ni–Ga, Ni–Ge, Ni–Si, and Ni–Ti alloys are re-evaluated in the context of recent (TIDC) and classical (LSW) theories of coarsening, with the objective of ascertaining the best values possible of interfacial free energies, σ, of the γ/γ′ interfaces in these five alloy systems. The re-evaluations include fitting of the particle size distributions, reanalyzing all the available data on the kinetics of particle growth and kinetics of solute depletion, and using thermodynamic assessments of the binary alloy phase diagrams to calculate curvatures of the Gibbs free energies of mixing...

2ND PRIZE! September: Grain boundary energy anisotropy: A review 

Gregory S. Rohrer

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This paper reviews findings on the anisotropy of the grain boundary energies. After introducing the basic concepts, there is a discussion of fundamental models used to understand and predict grain boundary energy anisotropy. Experimental methods for measuring the grain boundary energy anisotropy, all of which involve application of the Herring equation, are then briefly described...

December: The effect of carbon nanotubes on the fracture toughness and fatigue performance of a thermosetting epoxy polymer  

T. H. Hsieh, A. J. Kinloch, A. C. Taylor and I. A. Kinloch

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Multi-walled carbon nanotubes, with a typical length of 140 μm and a diameter of 120 nm, have been used to modify an anhydride-cured epoxy polymer... The fracture energy of the nanotube-modified epoxies was predicted, by considering the contributions of the toughening mechanisms of nanotube debonding, nanotube pull-out and plastic void growth of the epoxy. This indicated that debonding and pull-out contribute to the toughening effect, but the contribution of void growth is not significant. There was excellent agreement between the predictions and the experimental results.

October: Growth of graphene and graphite nanocrystals from a molten phase  

Shaahin Amini, Haamun Kalaantari, Javier Garay, Alexander A. Balandin and Reza Abbaschian

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From the issue entitled "Special Section: Abbaschian Festschrift"
We report on the development of a new technique for the growth of graphene and graphite nanocrystals from a metal–carbon melt.

August: Overview of transient liquid phase and partial transient liquid phase bonding  

Grant O. Cook and Carl D. Sorensen

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This article reviews important aspects of transient liquid phase (TLP) bonding, such as kinetics of the process, experimental details (bonding time, interlayer thickness and format, and optimal bonding temperature), and advantages and disadvantages of the process. A wide range of materials that TLP bonding has been applied to is also presented. Partial transient liquid phase (PTLP) bonding is a variant of TLP bonding that is typically used to join ceramics. PTLP bonding requires an interlayer composed of multiple layers; the most common bond setup consists of a thick refractory core sandwiched by thin, lower-melting layers on each side. This article explains how the experimental details and bonding kinetics of PTLP bonding differ from TLP bonding. Also, a range of materials that have been joined by PTLP bonding is presented.

June: Nanofibre fabrication in a temperature and humidity controlled environment for improved fibre consistency  

Oliver Hardick, Bob Stevens and Daniel G. Bracewell

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...In this study, the effect of controlled atmospheric conditions on electrospun cellulose acetate (CA) nanofibres was evaluated for temperatures ranging 17.5–32.5 °C and relative humidity ranging 20–70%. CA solution (0.2 g/mL) in a solvent mixture of acetone/dimethylformamide/ethanol (2:2:1) was electrospun into nonwoven fibre mesh with the fibre diameter ranging from 150 nm to 1 μm...

May: Puncturing of soft gels with multi-tip needles 

Susmita Das and Animangsu Ghatak

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...These experiments show that in contrast to a rigid, flat bottom punch and a punch with sharp tip, for these needles, puncturing of the gel does not occur continuously but intermittently with the fracture progressing alternately in the wedge opening and the shear fracture modes...

April: Recent developments in the preparation, characterization and applications of glass- and glass–ceramic-to-metal seals and coatings  

I. W. Donald, P. M. Mallinson, B. L. Metcalfe, L. A. Gerrard and J. A. Fernie

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...In this review, the factors learnt from past experience that influence the formation and lifetime behaviour of glass and glass–ceramic/metal systems are briefly introduced, and their relevance to the newer applications including solid oxide fuel cell sealants and coatings on titanium for biomedical applications is discussed.

March: Influence of the size-controlled TiO2 nanotubes fabricated by low-temperature chemical synthesis on the dye-sensitized solar cell properties  

Jang-Yul Kim, Tohru Sekino and Shun-Ichiro Tanaka

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Titanium dioxide nanotubes (TiO2 NTs) with various sizes have been prepared by low-temperature chemical synthesis using commercial anatase TiO2 particles with different crystallite size in NaOH solution and used as a photoelectrode in a dye-sensitized solar cell (DSSC)...

February: Review of the anatase to rutile phase transformation  

Dorian A. H. Hanaor and Charles C. Sorrell

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Titanium dioxide, TiO2, is an important photocatalytic material that exists as two main polymorphs, anatase and rutile...

The Sapphire Prize: Finalists 

Each month in 2011, we selected one outstanding paper as that month's Finalist for The Sapphire Prize. These papers are OpenAccess.
Congratulations to all the finalists!