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Advanced Materials and Materials Genome

Guest Editors-in-Chief
Tu, Hailing, General Research Institute for Nonferrous Metals, China
Konstantin, Solntsev, Russian Academy of Sciences, Russia
Chen, Liquan, Institute of Physics Chinese Academy of Sciences, China
Kiriakidis, George, University of Crete,E-MRS, IESL, Greece

Alexander, Morgan, The University of Nottingham, UK
Bardin, Billy B., The Dow Chemical Company, USA
Ceder, Gerbrand, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA
Cho, Kyeongjae, University of Texas at Dallas, USA
Ginley, David, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, USA
Kim, Moon J., The University of Texas at Dallas, USA
Mao, Samul S., University of California Berkeley, USA
Potyrailo, Radislav A., General Electric Company, USA
Siffert, Paul M., European Materials Research Society, France
Tsukihashi, Fumitaka, The University of Tokyo, Japan
Wang, Hong, China Building Materials Academy, China
Weber, Eicke R., Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE, Germany
Weng, Yuqing, China Iron & Steel Research Institute Group, China
Wu, Ling, China Solid State Lighting Alliance, China
Wu, Yicheng, Technical Institute of Physics and Chemistry, CAS, China
Xu, Huibing, Beihang University, China
Zhang, Xingdong, Sichuang University, China
Zhou, Shaoxiong, China Iron & Steel Research Institute Group, China

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Recent Developments in Functional Crystals in China
Jiyang Wang, Haohai Yu, Yicheng Wu, Robert Boughton
Engineering    2015, 1 (2): 192-210.   DOI: 10.15302/J-ENG-2015053
Abstract   HTML   PDF (18413KB)

Functional crystals are the basic materials for the development of modern science and technology and are playing key roles in the modern information era. In this paper, we review functional crystals in China, including research history, significant achievements, and important applications by highlighting the most recent progress in research. Challenges for the development of functional materials are discussed and possible directions for development are proposed by focusing on potential strengths of these materials.

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Research and Development of Heat-Resistant Materials for Advanced USC Power Plants with Steam Temperatures of 700 °C and Above
Fujio Abe
Engineering    2015, 1 (2): 211-224.   DOI: 10.15302/J-ENG-2015031
Abstract   HTML   PDF (1966KB)

Materials-development projects for advanced ultra-supercritical (A-USC) power plants with steam temperatures of 700 °C and above have been performed in order to achieve high efficiency and low CO2 emissions in Europe, the US, Japan, and recently in China and India as well. These projects involve the replacement of martensitic 9%−12% Cr steels with nickel (Ni)-base alloys for the highest temperature boiler and turbine components in order to provide sufficient creep strength at 700°C and above. To minimize the require­ment for expensive Ni-base alloys, martensitic 9%−12% Cr steels can be applied to the next highest temperature components of an A-USC power plant, up to a maximum of 650°C. This paper comprehensively describes the research and development of Ni-base alloys and martensitic 9%−12% Cr steels for thick section boiler and turbine components of A-USC power plants, mainly focusing on the long-term creep-rupture strength of base metal and welded joints, strength loss in welded joints, creep-fatigue properties, and microstructure evolution during exposure at elevated temperatures.

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Individualized Pixel Synthesis and Characterization of Combinatorial Materials Chips
Xiao-Dong Xiang, Gang Wang, Xiaokun Zhang, Yong Xiang, Hong Wang
Engineering    2015, 1 (2): 225-233.   DOI: 10.15302/J-ENG-2015041
Abstract   HTML   PDF (2547KB)

Conventionally, an experimentally determined phase diagram requires studies of phase formation at a range of temperatures for each composition, which takes years of effort from multiple research groups. Combinatorial materials chip technology, featuring high-throughput synthesis and characterization, is able to determine the phase diagram of an entire composition spread of a binary or ternary system at a single temperature on one materials library, which, though significantly increasing efficiency, still requires many libraries processed at a series of temperatures in order to complete a phase diagram. In this paper, we propose a “one-chip method” to construct a complete phase diagram by individually synthesizing each pixel step by step with a progressive pulse of energy to heat at different temperatures while monitoring the phase evolution on the pixel in situ in real time. Repeating this process pixel by pixel throughout the whole chip allows the entire binary or ternary phase diagram to be mapped on one chip in a single experiment. The feasibility of this methodology is demonstrated in a study of a Ge-Sb-Te ternary alloy system, on which the amorphous-crystalline phase boundary is determined.

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High-Throughput Screening Using Fourier-Transform Infrared Imaging
Erdem Sasmaz, Kathleen Mingle, Jochen Lauterbach
Engineering    2015, 1 (2): 234-242.   DOI: 10.15302/J-ENG-2015040
Abstract   HTML   PDF (1065KB)

Efficient parallel screening of combinatorial libraries is one of the most challenging aspects of the high-throughput (HT) heterogeneous catalysis workflow. Today, a number of methods have been used in HT catalyst studies, including various optical, mass-spectrometry, and gas-chromatography techniques. Of these, rapid-scanning Fourier-transform infrared (FTIR) imaging is one of the fastest and most versatile screening techniques. Here, the new design of the 16-channel HT reactor is presented and test results for its accuracy and reproducibility are shown. The performance of the system was evaluated through the oxidation of CO over commercial Pd/Al2O3 and cobalt oxide nanoparticles synthesized with different reducer-reductant molar ratios, surfactant types, metal and surfactant concentrations, synthesis temperatures, and ramp rates.

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First-Principles Study of Lithium and Sodium Atoms Intercalation in Fluorinated Graphite
Fengya Rao, Zhiqiang Wang, Bo Xu, Liquan Chen, Chuying Ouyang
Engineering    2015, 1 (2): 243-246.   DOI: 10.15302/J-ENG-2015039
Abstract   HTML   PDF (989KB)

The structure evolution of fluorinated graphite (CFx) upon the Li/Na intercalation has been studied by first-principles calculations. The Li/Na adsorption on single CF layer and intercalated into bulk CF have been calculated. The better cycling performance of Na intercalation into the CF cathode, comparing to that of Li intercalation, is attributed to the different strength and characteristics of the Li-F and Na-F interactions. The interactions between Li and F are stronger and more localized than those between Na and F. The strong and localized Coulomb attraction between Li and F atoms breaks the C−F bonds and pulls the F atoms away, and graphene sheets are formed upon Li intercalation.

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Bulk Glassy Alloys: Historical Development and Current Research
Akihisa Inoue
Engineering    2015, 1 (2): 185-191.   DOI: 10.15302/J-ENG-2015038
Abstract   HTML   PDF (317KB)

This paper reviews the development of current research in bulk glassy alloys by focusing on the trigger point for the synthesis of the first bulk glassy alloys by the conventional mold casting method. This review covers the background, discovery, characteristics, and applications of bulk glassy alloys, as well as recent topics regarding them. Applications of bulk glassy alloys have been expanding, particularly for Fe-based bulk glassy alloys, due to their unique properties, high glass-forming ability, and low cost. In the near future, the engineering importance of bulk glassy alloys is expected to increase steadily, and continuous interest in these novel metallic materials for basic science research is anticipated.

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Metamaterials: Reshape and Rethink
Ruopeng Liu, Chunlin Ji, Zhiya Zhao, Tian Zhou
Engineering    2015, 1 (2): 179-184.   DOI: 10.15302/J-ENG-2015036
Abstract   HTML   PDF (1318KB)

Metamaterials are composite materials whose material properties (acoustic, electrical, magnetic, or optical, etc.) are determined by their constitutive structural materials, especially the unit cells. The development of metamaterials continues to redefine the boundaries of materials science. In the field of electromagnetic research and beyond, these materials offer excellent design flexibility with their customized properties and their tunability under external stimuli. In this paper, we first provide a literature review of metamaterials with a focus on the technology and its evolution. We then discuss steps in the industrialization process and share our own experience.

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Progress in Understanding Color Maintenance in Solid-State Lighting Systems
Maryam Yazdan Mehr, Willem Dirk van Driel, G. Q. (Kouchi) Zhang
Engineering    2015, 1 (2): 170-178.   DOI: 10.15302/J-ENG-2015035
Abstract   HTML   PDF (2444KB)

In this paper, progresses of color maintenance, also known as color shift, in solid-state lighting (SSL) systems are thoroughly reviewed. First, color shift is introduced and a few examples are given from different real-life industrial conditions. Different degradation mechanisms in different parts of the system are also explained. Different materials used as lenses/encapsulants in light-emitting diode (LED)-based products are introduced and their contributions to color shift are discussed. Efforts put into standardization, characterizing, and predicting lumen maintenance are also briefly reviewed in this paper.

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Effects of Vapor Pressure and Super-Hydrophobic Nanocomposite Coating on Microelectronics Reliability
Xuejun Fan, Liangbiao Chen, C. P. Wong, Hsing-Wei Chu, G. Q. Zhang
Engineering    2015, 1 (3): 384-390.   DOI: 10.15302/J-ENG-2015034
Abstract   HTML   PDF (1651KB)

Modeling vapor pressure is crucial for studying the moisture reliability of microelectronics, as high vapor pressure can cause device failures in environments with high temperature and humidity. To minimize the impact of vapor pressure, a super-hydrophobic (SH) coating can be applied on the exterior surface of devices in order to prevent moisture penetration. The underlying mechanism of SH coating for enhancing device reliability, however, is still not fully understood. In this paper, we present several existing theories for predicting vapor pressure within microelectronic materials. In addition, we discuss the mechanism and effectiveness of SH coating in preventing water vapor from entering a device, based on experimental results. Two theoretical models, a micro-mechanics-based whole-field vapor pressure model and a convection-diffusion model, are described for predicting vapor pressure. Both methods have been successfully used to explain experimental results on uncoated samples. However, when a device was coated with an SH nanocomposite, weight gain was still observed, likely due to vapor penetration through the SH surface. This phenomenon may cast doubt on the effectiveness of SH coatings in microelectronic devices. Based on current theories and the available experimental results, we conclude that it is necessary to develop a new theory to understand how water vapor penetrates through SH coatings and impacts the materials underneath. Such a theory could greatly improve microelectronics reliability.

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Materials Design on the Origin of Gap States in a High-κ/GaAs Interface
Weichao Wang, Cheng Gong, Ka Xiong, Santosh K.C., Robert M. Wallace, Kyeongjae Cho
Engineering    2015, 1 (3): 372-377.   DOI: 10.15302/J-ENG-2015052
Abstract   HTML   PDF (1922KB)

Given the demand for constantly scaling microelectronic devices to ever smaller dimensions, a SiO2 gate dielectric was substituted with a higher dielectric-constant material, Hf(Zr)O2, in order to minimize current leakage through dielectric thin film. However, upon interfacing with high dielectric constant (high-κ) dielectrics, the electron mobility in the conventional Si channel degrades due to Coulomb scattering, surface-roughness scattering, remote-phonon scattering, and dielectric-charge trapping. III-V and Ge are two promising candidates with superior mobility over Si. Nevertheless, Hf(Zr)O2/III-V(Ge) has much more complicated interface bonding than Si-based interfaces. Successful fabrication of a high-quality device critically depends on understanding and engineering the bonding configurations at Hf(Zr)O2/III-V(Ge) interfaces for the optimal design of device interfaces. Thus, an accurate atomic insight into the interface bonding and mechanism of interface gap states formation becomes essential. Here, we utilize first-principle calculations to investigate the interface between HfO2 and GaAs. Our study shows that As−As dimer bonding, Ga partial oxidation (between 3+ and 1+) and Ga− dangling bonds constitute the major contributions to gap states. These findings provide insightful guidance for optimum interface passivation.

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Single-Seed Casting Large-Size Monocrystalline Silicon for High-Efficiency and Low-Cost Solar Cells
Bing Gao, Satoshi Nakano, Hirofumi Harada, Yoshiji Miyamura, Takashi Sekiguchi, Koichi Kakimoto
Engineering    2015, 1 (3): 378-383.   DOI: 10.15302/J-ENG-2015032
Abstract   HTML   PDF (2945KB)

To grow high-quality and large-size monocrystal-line silicon at low cost, we proposed a single-seed casting technique. To realize this technique, two challenges—polycrystalline nucleation on the crucible wall and dislocation multiplication inside the crystal—needed to be addressed. Numerical analysis was used to develop solutions for these challenges. Based on an optimized furnace structure and operating conditions from numerical analysis, experiments were performed to grow monocrystalline silicon using the single-seed casting technique. The results revealed that this technique is highly superior to the popular high-performance multicrystalline and multiseed casting mono-like techniques.

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High-Throughput Multi-Plume Pulsed-Laser Deposition for Materials Exploration and Optimization
Samuel S. Mao, Xiaojun Zhang
Engineering    2015, 1 (3): 367-371.   DOI: 10.15302/J-ENG-2015065
Abstract   HTML   PDF (4674KB)

A high-throughput multi-plume pulsed-laser deposition (MPPLD) system has been demonstrated and compared to previous techniques. Whereas most combinatorial pulsed-laser deposition (PLD) systems have focused on achieving thickness uniformity using sequential multilayer deposition and masking followed by post-deposition annealing, MPPLD directly deposits a compositionally varied library of compounds using the directionality of PLD plumes and the resulting spatial variations of deposition rate. This system is more suitable for high-throughput compound thin-film fabrication.

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