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Development and Characterisation of Novel Polymeric Materials and Composites

A special issue of International Journal of Molecular Sciences (ISSN 1422-0067). This special issue belongs to the section "Macromolecules".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 September 2023) | Viewed by 10892

Special Issue Editors

Key Laboratory of Sensors Technology, Beijing Information Science & Technology University, Beijing 100192, China
Interests: smart materials; surface and interface science; composites; self-assembly; sensors; pulsed electric field technique; electromagnetic functional material
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues, 

Molecular are the fundamental units of materials. Molecular sciences are unraveling the wide variety of phenomena relevant to materials. Based on the foundation of molecular science, the intersection between molecular science and materials, and life science, as well as the promotion of molecular science to sustainable development, frontier research in molecular science includes precise synthesis and preparation of molecular systems, controllable assembly of molecules, construction and application of molecular functional systems, etc. In particular, with advances in nanoscience and nanotechnology, different varieties of novel polymeric materials and composites are being developed with unique acoustic, electric, magnetic, optical, catalytic, thermal and mechanical properties. These are instrumental in achieving progress in the areas of Energy, Materials, Life, Environment, etc. Therefore, this is a fitting time to present a summary of the progress made in the field of novel polymeric materials and composites. We welcome submissions either in the form of reviews on a particular topic or recent original research results. Potential topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Novel polymeric materials and composites Functional nanoparticles;
  • Nanocoatings and nanocomposites;
  • Surface and Interface Science;
  • Self-Assembly;
  • Energy storage material;
  • Catalytic materials;
  • Adverse effects of nanomaterials;
  • Future perspectives for novel polymeric materials and composites;
  • Role of nanomaterials in medicine.

Dr. Qingwei Liao
Dr. Kunn Hadinoto Ong
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Molecular Sciences is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

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Keywords

  • composites
  • nanocoatings
  • surface and interface
  • self-assembly
  • nanomaterials
  • nanoengneerings

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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19 pages, 9030 KiB  
Article
Iridescent Features Correlating with Periodic Assemblies in Custom-Crystallized Arylate Polyesters
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2023, 24(21), 15538; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms242115538 - 24 Oct 2023
Viewed by 675
Abstract
In this study, five different aryl polyesters, i.e., poly(ethylene terephthalate) (PET), poly(trimethylene terephthalate) (PTT), poly(octamethylene terephthalate) (POT), poly(nonamethylene terephthalate) (PNT), and poly(decamethylene terephthalate) (PDT), upon crystallization at a suitable temperature range, all exhibit ring-banded spherulites with universal characteristics. Previous research has revealed some [...] Read more.
In this study, five different aryl polyesters, i.e., poly(ethylene terephthalate) (PET), poly(trimethylene terephthalate) (PTT), poly(octamethylene terephthalate) (POT), poly(nonamethylene terephthalate) (PNT), and poly(decamethylene terephthalate) (PDT), upon crystallization at a suitable temperature range, all exhibit ring-banded spherulites with universal characteristics. Previous research has revealed some fundamental mechanisms underlying the formation of periodic hierarchical structures. Additionally, this study further explored correlations among micro/nanocrystal assemblies in the top surface and internal grating architectures and the structural iridescent properties. The interior lamellar assembly of arylate polyesters’ banded spherulites is shown to exhibit periodic birefringence patterns that are highly reminiscent of those found in a variety of biological structures, with the capacity for iridescence from light interference. A laser diffraction analysis was also used to support confirmation of this condition, which could result in an arc diffraction pattern indicative of the presence of ringed spherulites. Among the five arylate polyesters, only PET is incapable of regularly producing ring-banded morphology, and thus cannot produce any iridescent color. Full article
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13 pages, 6326 KiB  
Article
In Situ Silver Nanonets for Flexible Stretchable Electrodes
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2023, 24(11), 9319; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms24119319 - 26 May 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1007
Abstract
Shape-controlled synthesis is an effective method for controlling the physicochemical properties of nanomaterials, especially single-crystal nanomaterials, but it is difficult to control the morphology of single-crystal metallic nanomaterials. Silver nanowires (AgNWs) are regarded as key materials for the new generation of human–computer interaction, [...] Read more.
Shape-controlled synthesis is an effective method for controlling the physicochemical properties of nanomaterials, especially single-crystal nanomaterials, but it is difficult to control the morphology of single-crystal metallic nanomaterials. Silver nanowires (AgNWs) are regarded as key materials for the new generation of human–computer interaction, which can be applied in large-scale flexible and foldable devices, large-size touch screens, transparent LED films, photovoltaic cells, etc. When used on a large scale, the junction resistance will be generated at the overlap between AgNWs and the conductivity will decrease. When stretched, the overlap of AgNWs will be easily disconnected, which will lead to a decrease in electrical conductivity or even system failure. We propose that in situ silver nanonets (AgNNs) can solve the above two problems. The AgNNs exhibited excellent electrical conductivity (0.15 Ω∙sq−1, which was 0.2 Ω∙sq−1 lower than the 0.35 Ω∙sq−1 square resistance of AgNWs) and extensibility (the theoretical tensile rate was 53%). In addition to applications in flexible stretchable sensing and display industries, they also have the potential to be used as plasmonic materials in molecular recognition, catalysis, biomedicine and other fields. Full article
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13 pages, 2691 KiB  
Article
N-Doped Carbon/CeO2 Composite as a Biomimetic Catalyst for Antibacterial Application
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2023, 24(3), 2445; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms24032445 - 26 Jan 2023
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1087
Abstract
Exploring new and high efficiency mimic enzymes is a vital and novel strategy for antibacterial application. Haloperoxidase-like enzymes have attracted wide attention thanks to their amazing catalytic property for hypohalous acid generation from hydrogen peroxide and halides. However, few materials have displayed halogenating [...] Read more.
Exploring new and high efficiency mimic enzymes is a vital and novel strategy for antibacterial application. Haloperoxidase-like enzymes have attracted wide attention thanks to their amazing catalytic property for hypohalous acid generation from hydrogen peroxide and halides. However, few materials have displayed halogenating catalytic performance until now. Herein, we synthesized N-doped C/CeO2 (N-C/CeO2) composite materials by a combination of the liquid and solid-state method. N-C/CeO2 can possess haloperoxidase-like catalytic activity by catalyzing the bromination of organic signaling compounds (phenol red) with H2O2 at a wide range of temperatures (20 °C to 55 °C), with a solution color changing from yellow to blue. Meanwhile, it exhibits high catalytic stability/recyclability in the catalytic reaction. The synthesized N-C/CeO2 composite can effectively catalyze the oxidation of Br with H2O2 to produce HBrO without the presence of phenol red. The produced HBrO can resist typical marine bacteria like Pseudomonas aeruginosa. This study provides an efficient biomimetic haloperoxidase and a novel sustainable method for antibacterial application. Full article
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Review

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20 pages, 4024 KiB  
Review
Toughening Thermoelectric Materials: From Mechanisms to Applications
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2023, 24(7), 6325; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms24076325 - 28 Mar 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2022
Abstract
With the tendency of thermoelectric semiconductor devices towards miniaturization, integration, and flexibility, there is an urgent need to develop high-performance thermoelectric materials. Compared with the continuously enhanced thermoelectric properties of thermoelectric materials, the understanding of toughening mechanisms lags behind. Recent advances in thermoelectric [...] Read more.
With the tendency of thermoelectric semiconductor devices towards miniaturization, integration, and flexibility, there is an urgent need to develop high-performance thermoelectric materials. Compared with the continuously enhanced thermoelectric properties of thermoelectric materials, the understanding of toughening mechanisms lags behind. Recent advances in thermoelectric materials with novel crystal structures show intrinsic ductility. In addition, some promising toughening strategies provide new opportunities for further improving the mechanical strength and ductility of thermoelectric materials. The synergistic mechanisms between microstructure-mechanical performances are expected to show a large set of potential applications in flexible thermoelectric devices. This review explores enlightening research into recent intrinsically ductile thermoelectric materials and promising toughening strategies of thermoelectric materials to elucidate their applications in the field of flexible thermoelectric devices. Full article
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30 pages, 7015 KiB  
Review
Silver-Based Surface Plasmon Sensors: Fabrication and Applications
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2023, 24(4), 4142; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms24044142 - 18 Feb 2023
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2533
Abstract
A series of novel phenomena such as optical nonlinear enhancement effect, transmission enhancement, orientation effect, high sensitivity to refractive index, negative refraction and dynamic regulation of low threshold can be generated by the control of surface plasmon (SP) with metal micro-nano structure and [...] Read more.
A series of novel phenomena such as optical nonlinear enhancement effect, transmission enhancement, orientation effect, high sensitivity to refractive index, negative refraction and dynamic regulation of low threshold can be generated by the control of surface plasmon (SP) with metal micro-nano structure and metal/material composite structure. The application of SP in nano-photonics, super-resolution imaging, energy, sensor detection, life science, and other fields shows an important prospect. Silver nanoparticles are one of the commonly used metal materials for SP because of their high sensitivity to refractive index change, convenient synthesis, and high controllable degree of shape and size. In this review, the basic concept, fabrication, and applications of silver-based surface plasmon sensors are summarized. Full article
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24 pages, 4425 KiB  
Review
A Recent Progress in the Leachate Pretreatment Methods Coupled with Anaerobic Digestion for Enhanced Biogas Production: Feasibility, Trends, and Techno-Economic Evaluation
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2023, 24(1), 763; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms24010763 - 01 Jan 2023
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2694
Abstract
Landfill leachate (LFL) treatment is a severe challenge due to its highly viscous nature and various complex pollutants. Leachate comprises various toxic pollutants, including inorganic macro/nano components, xenobiotics, dissolved organic matter, heavy metals, and microorganisms responsible for severe environmental pollution. Various treatment procedures [...] Read more.
Landfill leachate (LFL) treatment is a severe challenge due to its highly viscous nature and various complex pollutants. Leachate comprises various toxic pollutants, including inorganic macro/nano components, xenobiotics, dissolved organic matter, heavy metals, and microorganisms responsible for severe environmental pollution. Various treatment procedures are available to achieve better effluent quality levels; however, most of these treatments are nondestructive, so pollutants are merely transported from one phase to another, resulting in secondary contamination. Anaerobic digestion is a promising bioconversion technology for treating leachate while producing renewable, cleaner energy. Because of its high toxicity and low biodegradability, biological approaches necessitate employing other techniques to complement and support the primary process. In this regard, pretreatment technologies have recently attracted researchers’ interest in addressing leachate treatment concerns through anaerobic digestion. This review summarizes various LFL pretreatment methods, such as electrochemical, ultrasonic, alkaline, coagulation, nanofiltration, air stripping, adsorption, and photocatalysis, before the anaerobic digestion of leachate. The pretreatment could assist in converting biogas (carbon dioxide to methane) and residual volatile fatty acids to valuable chemicals and fuels and even straight to power generation. However, the selection of pretreatment is a vital step. The techno-economic analysis also suggested the high economic feasibility of integrated-anaerobic digestion. Therefore, with the incorporation of pretreatment and anaerobic digestion, the process could have high economic viability attributed to bioenergy production and cost savings through sustainable leachate management options. Full article
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