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Micro & Nano Letters, IET

Issue 1 • Date January 2012

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Displaying Results 1 - 25 of 26
  • Biomimetic synthesis of selenium nanoparticles using cell-free extract of microbacterium sp. ARB05

    Page(s): 1 - 4
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (262 KB)  

    This Letter is a novel approach to synthesise a bio-functionalised selenium nanoparticles using cell-free extract of selenium-resistant bacterial isolate. Phylogenetic analysis of isolate suggested its close similarity with Microbacterium luteolum (Y17235.1) and Microbacterium oxydans str. TPL09 (EU373379.1) while it was distantly related to Microbacterium dextranolyticum (Y17230.1). Selenium colloidal solution exhibited an absorption maximum at 300 nm and gave emission maximum at 590 nm. Transmission electron microscopy followed by selected area electron diffraction pattern analysis indicated the formation of spherical, polydispersed, crystalline, Se nanoparticles of diameter ranging from 30 to 150 nm. X-ray diffraction results showed 111, 200 and 220 planes of face-centred cubic selenium. Energy dispersive analysis of X-rays confirmed the presence of selenium in nanosphere. Selenium nanoparticles synthesised in this manner can be studied for chemo-prevention as well as its fluorescent property can be utilised for molecular diagnostics in cancer research. View full abstract»

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  • Synthesis and anomalous magnetic behaviour of NiO nanotubes and nanoparticles

    Page(s): 5 - 8
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (270 KB)  

    NiO nanotubes and nanoparticles were synthesised via a sol-gel technique followed by heat treatment process. The morphologies of the samples are investigated by transmission electron and field emission scanning electron microscope. X-ray diffraction and selected area electron diffraction patterns imply that the crystal structure of the samples is the cubic polycrystalline. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy results indicate that the element of Ni is bivalent in the samples. The observation of ferromagnetism at room temperature for the samples has been established with the obvious hysteresis and the coercive field in magnetic hysteresis loops. The zero-field-cooled and field-cooled magnetisation curves prove that there is no contamination of ferromagnetic clusters in the samples. The anomalous magnetic behaviour in antiferromagnetic NiO nanotubes and nanoparticles may arise from the surface spins. View full abstract»

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  • New Al0.25Ga0.75N/GaN HEMTs structure with the partial silicon doping

    Page(s): 9 - 11
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (239 KB)  

    By applying the theory of two-dimensional electron gas (2DEG) formed in the AlGaN/GaN high electron mobility transistors, two 2DEG concentration regions are realised by doping partial silicon into the AlGaN layer for the first time. A new electric field peak is introduced in the surface electric field by the electric field modulation effect due to the partial silicon positive charge. The high electric fields near the gate and drain electrodes are decreased effectively, and the surface electric field is uniform. The proposed structure with the partial silicon doping is better than the conventional structures with the electric field plate near the drain, which is due to the absence of the adding capacitance. The breakdown voltage is improved from 308 V for the conventional structure to 400 V for the proposed one resulting from the uniform surface electric field. View full abstract»

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  • Transparent ATO/epoxy nanocomposite coating with excellent thermal insulation property

    Page(s): 12 - 14
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (282 KB)  

    Transparent antimony-doped tin oxide (ATO)/epoxy nanocomposites, as glass thermal insulation coating, were prepared by incorporating ATO nanoparticles into a transparent epoxy matrix. The effect of ATO content on the optical and thermal insulation property of ATO/epoxy coating was studied. The results show that the ATO/epoxy coating with 1 wt ATO has excellent optical properties, that is, visible light transmittance above 50 and shading coefficient of 0.54 are simultaneously achieved. In addition, the large temperature difference between the chambers coated respectively with the ATO/epoxy glass sheet and the common glass sheet indicates that the prepared ATO/epoxy nanocomposite coating has excellent thermal insulation property. View full abstract»

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  • Effects of geometrical dimensions on the response of resonating microcantilevers in the vicinity of a surface

    Page(s): 15 - 19
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (329 KB)  

    Application of atomic force microscopy (AFM) in liquid is necessary for imaging and manipulation of biological specimens. Frequency response of an AFM cantilever immersed in liquid near a surface depends on liquid and cantilever mechanical properties, cantilever geometrical dimensions and also the distance between cantilever and surface. The formulas of wet quality factor and wet resonance frequency and resonance amplitude are extracted based on the modal method with the first mode and by simulation of the oscillatory motion of microcantilevers. The effects of cantilever geometrical dimensions on the amount of the microcantilever resonance frequency, the amplitude of the peak and the quality factor of the vibration are observed. This knowledge can help in choosing appropriate parameters for AFM cantilevers in liquid environment. View full abstract»

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  • Carbon nanotube field effect transistor-based content addressable memory architectures

    Page(s): 20 - 23
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (318 KB)  

    The authors investigate the use of carbon nanotube-based field effect transistors for the design of content addressable memory (CAM). An alternate design of a ternary content addressable memory (3CAM) using three-valued circuit structures is presented and it has been shown that the new design can lead to a 25% savings in area with no loss in search speed. View full abstract»

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  • Design and simulation of broadband nanoantennae at optical frequencies

    Page(s): 24 - 28
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (518 KB)  

    The authors investigate the spectral, polarisation and emission properties of a dual-arm spiral nanoantenna and its complementary structure in optical frequency range numerically using finite integration technique. The nanoantenna can enhance the intensity of incident light by orders of magnitude and maintain its emission properties over wide frequency range. They can receive waves of any linear polarisation. The emitted radiation from the antennae is bidirectional and circularly polarised. The distinctive spectral and polarisation properties of the spiral nanoantenna might achieve new landmarks in the field of nanophotonics. To the author's knowledge this is the first theoretical investigation of a broadband nanoantenna in optical frequency range. View full abstract»

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  • Hydrothermal synthesis of urchin-like ZnO and ZnO/ZnS heterogeneous architectures

    Page(s): 29 - 32
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (254 KB)  

    Urchin-like ZnO and ZnO/ZnS heterogeneous architectures were synthesised by a facile, inexpensive and improved hydrothermal process without any surfactants or templates at 150°C for 16°h. The morphology and qualitative analysis of the products were characterised by X-ray powder diffraction, transmission electron microscopy, field-emitting scanning electron microscopy and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. The results indicate that the products are urchin-like and well crystallised. The red shift of the Zn°O vibrations in the ZnO/ZnS heterogeneous architectures is ca. 23°cm-1 compared to that of the pure ZnO products. The growth mechanisms of ZnO and ZnO/ZnS heterogeneous architectures were discussed in detail. View full abstract»

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  • Facile hydrothermal synthesis and electrochemical properties of flowerlike α-FeOOH

    Page(s): 33 - 36
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (358 KB)  

    Flowerlike α-FeOOH products were successfully prepared through hydrothermal treatment of ammonium iron (II) sulphate solution without extra template or surfactant. The as-prepared products were characterised by X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, high-resolution transmission electron microscopy and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. It was found that the reaction temperature and time were critical for the formation of flowerlike α-FeOOH products. The results revealed that the flowerlike α-FeOOH was single-crystal structure in nature. Furthermore, the electrochemical properties of flowerlike α-FeOOH were investigated by cyclic voltammetry and galvanostatic charge-discharge measurements. A pair of electrochemical redox peaks presenting on each cyclic voltammogram indicated the existence of Faradic process, which was a signature of pseudocapacitance. The shape of charge-discharge curve displayed typical characteristics of Faradic deposition. Flowerlike α-FeOOH showed a good electrochemical performance, which may be a promising candidate as electrode material for supercapacitors. View full abstract»

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  • Influence of heat treatment temperature on the electro-catalytic behaviour of nanostructure RuO2-TiO2 coating for the chlorine evolution reaction

    Page(s): 37 - 40
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (233 KB)  

    60RuO2-40TiO2 coating was deposited on titanium substrate by the thermal decomposition of chloride solution. The mixed oxide thin film was prepared in different heat treatment temperatures. The effect of heat treatment temperature on the electro-catalytic performance of the mixed oxide coating during chlorine evolution was evaluated. Coated anodes were studied by field emission scanning electron microscopy and X-ray diffraction. Chlorine evolution was studied in 5 M NaCl solution by potentiodynamic current potential curves. Heat treatment temperature has the most significant effect on electro-catalytic activity of the coating. High heat treatment temperature deteriorates electro-catalytic performance of coating for chlorine evolution reaction. Low ratio of the active 101 crystallographic faces observed in high temperature can reduce the current density for gas evolution. View full abstract»

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  • Synthesis of WO3 materials with interwoven network structures for high-performance sensors

    Page(s): 41 - 44
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (358 KB)  

    Tungsten oxide with interwoven network structure was prepared by a simple soakage procedure associated with subsequent sintered treatment, using natural eggshell membranes as the template. The synthesis conditions were further investigated by controlling the concentration of the precursor and gas-sensing properties were surveyed by using H2S as target gas. The results show that the interwoven network structure helps to improve the gas-sensing properties effectively. More interestingly, the response to H2S decreased with the increase of the concentration of tungstate precursor. Furthermore, the impact of operating temperature to recovery time was also studied and some plausible mechanisms were proposed. View full abstract»

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  • Characterisation of electroplated NiMn films for wafer probing

    Page(s): 45 - 48
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (394 KB)  

    Reliability in wafer test is critical for sort yield and the probe life is key to sort the floor performance. Probes made of Ni-alloys are becoming common as increasing parallelism and fine pitch requirements in test transform probe cards into microelectromechanical system products. NiMn probes, with a composition of 0.25 wt Mn and good spring properties, were developed for high-cycle wafer probe applications. Mechanical properties of electroplated layers were investigated as a function of annealing conditions. A film release process was developed without the use of a sacrificial layer. Microstructural evolution on the film release interface was examined for two different substrates. View full abstract»

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  • Characterisation of electroplated NiMn films for wafer probing

    Page(s): 45 - 48
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (399 KB)  

    Reliability in wafer test is critical for sort yield and the probe life is key to sort the floor performance. Probes made of Ni-alloys are becoming common as increasing parallelism and fine pitch requirements in test transform probe cards into microelectromechanical system products. NiMn probes, with a composition of 0.25 wt% Mn and good spring properties, were developed for high-cycle wafer probe applications. Mechanical properties of electroplated layers were investigated as a function of annealing conditions. A film release process was developed without the use of a sacrificial layer. Microstructural evolution on the film release interface was examined for two different substrates. View full abstract»

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  • Effect of reaction time in direct nitridation of Si powders

    Page(s): 49 - 51
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (219 KB)  

    Si3N4 nanomaterials have been synthesised via direct nitridation of Si powders at 1300°C for different reaction time. The purified Si3N4 samples were characterised by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction and transmission electron microscopy. The results showed that the samples obtained for different reaction time are mixtures of α- and α-Si3N4 phases. The percentage of β-Si3N4 in the Si3N4 samples has obviously increased with the reaction time. The Si3N4 samples are mainly composed of nanobelts with different width. View full abstract»

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  • Visible-light-induced degradation of methylene blue by mesoporous Bi2WO6 plates with worm-like structure

    Page(s): 52 - 55
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (240 KB)  

    Mesoporous Bi2WO6 plates with worm-like structure have been successfully synthesised by hydrothermal process. The obtained Bi2WO6 plates were characterised by X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, Brunauer-Emmett-Teller and UV-vis diffuse reflectance spectrum. The photocatalytic activity of as-synthesised Bi2WO6 plates was determined by degradation of methylene blue (MB) under visible light irradiation. The results showed that the high specific surface area, the existence of accessible mesopores channels and the quantum size effect could remarkably improve the photocatalytic activity of mesoporous Bi2WO6 plates. View full abstract»

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  • Synthesis of a novel NiO tube with porous surface constructed by nanoworms

    Page(s): 56 - 59
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (317 KB)  

    Nickel oxide (NiO) tubes were prepared by template method and characterised by scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, electron energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, X-ray diffractometer and Raman spectrum. The products exhibited tubular structure and the diameter of the tubes was dependent on the size of the fibre template. When controlling the preparation conditions, NiO tubes with porous surface could be obtained, and the tube walls were composed of a large amount of NiO nanoworms, forming porous structure. The NiO tubes with porous surface may exhibit improved performance in some applications such as catalysis and supercapacitors. View full abstract»

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  • Electrodeposition method synthesise gold nanoparticles-Prussian blue-graphene nanocomposite and its application in electrochemical sensor for H2O2

    Page(s): 60 - 63
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (399 KB)  

    Gold nanoparticles-Prussian blue-graphene (GNPs-PB-Gr) nanocomposites were successfully synthesised by a simple one-step electrodeposition method. Using those GNPs-PB-Gr nanocomposites, a simple H2O2 amperometric sensor has been fabricated (GNPs-PB-Gr/glassy carbon electrode (GCE)) and evaluated by electrochemical impedance spectroscopy, cyclic voltammetry and typical amperometric method. When applied to detect H2O2 by amperometric method, GNPs-PB-Gr/GCE produced an ultrahigh sensitivity of 33.86--A/mM with a low detection limit of 1.5--M (signal-to-noise ratio (SNR)-3). What is more, interference from common co-existing species, such as uric acid and ascorbic acid, can be avoided at the sensor. The results obtained in this Letter imply that GNPs-PB-Gr nanocomposites are promising nanomaterials for the determination of H2O2. View full abstract»

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  • Plasma separation PMMA device driven by capillary force controlling surface wettability

    Page(s): 64 - 67
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (221 KB)  

    In this Letter, a microdevice driven by capillary action is developed for the high-throughput on-chip separation of plasma from a drop of blood. The microfluidic device consists of an array of polymethyl methacrylate channels 2 m deep and 2 m wide. It is fabricated by hot embossing and thermal bonding from a Si master mold. Then, it is modified using oxygen plasma and poly-l-lysine to obtain a hydrophilic surface. After the injection of a blood sample, the plasma flows rapidly and arrives at the outlet within 3 min, demonstrating a red blood cell separation ratio greater than 99 . Moreover, no haemolysis was observed. Since the proposed device is driven solely by capillary action, its passive mode of operation requires no microfluidic pumps or any other additional power supply. It can therefore be miniaturised for incorporation in a diagnostic system. View full abstract»

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  • Developing passive piezoelectric MEMS sensor applicable to two-wire DC appliances with current switching

    Page(s): 68 - 71
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (204 KB)  

    A passive, non-contact piezoelectric microelectromechanical system sensor, aimed to perform monitoring of electricity consumption in DC electrical appliances with current switching, was proposed and demonstrated. A micro-magnet was integrated into the proposed sensor and an appropriate position for locating the micro-magnet was theoretically determined. A prototype piezoelectric sensor was fabricated, and an impulse piezoelectric voltage output was detected from a two-wire electrical appliance cord without using cord separator and driving power when switching a DC electric current on or off. A linear relationship between the measured peak value of the impulse output voltage and the applied DC electric current was obtained. The difference between the measured value and the calculated one was further theoretically considered from the view point of impedance effect. View full abstract»

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  • Preparation of sodium tantalate powder via a combustion method

    Page(s): 72 - 75
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (362 KB)  

    Sodium tantalate (NaTaO3) powder with high crystallinity has been successfully synthesised through a combustion reaction. The energy supplied in this way speeds up the chemical reaction of raw powder (which dramatically reduces the reaction time) and also decreases the reaction temperature (~600°C). Among several groups of proposed experiments, urea has been found to be the best organic compound (among the four auxiliary agents: urea, methenamine, citric acid, oxalic acid) in this synthetic process. The oxalate ion also plays an important role during the formation of NaTaO3 powder. Powder X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy and transmission electron microscope are used to characterise various properties of the obtained NaTaO3 powder. It was observed that the pure NaTaO3 powder is well crystallised with a uniform morphology. View full abstract»

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  • N-carboxyethylchitosan/nanohydroxyapatite composites scaffold for tracheal cartilage tissue-engineering applications

    Page(s): 76 - 79
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (346 KB)  

    The aim of this Letter is to investigate the feasibility of isolated tracheal chondrocytes on a novel-type nanocomposite scaffold for application to cartilage regeneration. The scaffold was based on biocompatible N-carboxyethylchitosan containing hydroxyapatite nanoparticles (NCECS/nHA). NCECS/nHA nanocomposite scaffold was fabricated by vacuum freeze-drying. Tracheal cartilage segments from a 8-week-old New Zealand white rabbit were chopped into small 1 × 1 × 1 × mm3 blocks. Following type II collagenase digestion, chondrocytes at passage 3 were seeded onto three-dimensional porous NCECS/nHA scaffolds. These cell-scaffold constructs were precultured in the incubator for 5 days and then subcutaneously implanted into nude mice for in vivo culture. After 8 weeks, explanted constructs were harvested and dedicated for histomorphologic and biochemical assays. The pore size of NCECS/nHA nanocomposite scaffold ranged from 200 to 500 m. The porosity was 85 . The chondrocytes cultured in this scaffold produced cartilaginous matrices. Immunohistochemical staining for type II collagen revealed that chondrocytes exhibited dark brown cytoplasm. After 8-week in vivo culture, the neonatal cartilage-like tissue exhibited histomorphological and biochemical characteristics similar to that of mature hyaline cartilage. These results demonstrated that NCECS/nHA facilitated the adhesion and viability of chondrocytes, and therefore allowed the authors to make further improvement by applying tissue-engineering methods to regenerate tracheas for clinical use. View full abstract»

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  • New method of producing aligned electrospun poly(2-acrylamido-2- methylpropanesulphonic acid)/poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) nanofibres

    Page(s): 80 - 82
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (320 KB)  

    The authors developed a modified collector that formed well-aligned poly(2-acrylamido-2-methylpropanesulphonic acid) (PAMPS)/poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) (PNIPAAm) nanofibres with no bead defects. Fibre morphologies on the aluminium plate collector and glass sheet collector were given by scanning electron microscope. The effects of electrospinning time on the ordered degree and the diameter of nanofibres were investigated. Results showed that the ordered degree of nanofibres was not obviously affected by the electrospinning time. Nanofibres' average diameter decreased from 282.92 to 103.56'nm with decrease of weight ratio of N, N-dimethylformamide (DMF) in electrospun solution. The range of diameter distribution narrowed as DMF concentration in electrospun solution decreased. View full abstract»

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  • Tunable monodispersed Fe3O4 nanoparticles prepared by controlled two-step heating method using diesel oil as solvent

    Page(s): 83 - 85
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (402 KB)  

    Monodispersed magnetite nanoparticles were prepared by two-step heating method, using cost-effective diesel oil as solvent. Monodispersed magnetite nanoparticles with variable sizes from 3 to 20 nm in diameter could be synthesised by selecting distilled fractions of diesel oil with different reflux temperatures. The small nanoparticles are hexagon, whereas the 20 nm nanoparticles are square or triangle. The particle size could be further enlarged by once or twice seed-mediated growth method, using the previous prepared magnetite nanoparticles as the seeds. This is meaningful to the mass production of the monodispersed magnetite nanoparticles, as well as other metal oxide, in a cost-effective way. View full abstract»

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  • Frequency analysis of carbon-nanotube-based mass sensor using non-local Timoshenko beam theory

    Page(s): 86 - 89
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (244 KB)  

    The characteristic equation of carbon-nanotube-based cantilever sensor with an attached mass is derived analytically using non-local Timoshenko beam theory. The relationship between the resonant frequency of the sensor and the attached mass can be obtained from the equation. The result shows that the effects of shear deformation and rotary inertia on the frequency of the sensor obviously increase when the mode number increases and the attached mass is small relative to the sensor. When the value of aspect ratio of the sensor is small, the effects of shear deformation and rotary inertia on the frequency are large particularly at high-order modes. In addition, the variation of frequency shift with the attached mass on the sensor is compared with the previous studies when the non-local effect is not taken into account. View full abstract»

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  • Effect of heat treatment on the properties of electroless Ni-P-carbon nanotube composite coatings

    Page(s): 90 - 94
    Save to Project icon | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (196 KB)  

    Electroless Ni-P-carbon nanotube composite coatings were deposited on API-5L X65 steel substrates. The coatings were vacuum heat treated at temperatures of 200-C for 2-h, 400-C for 1-h and 600-C for 15-min. Microhardness measurement, X-ray diffraction (XRD) technique, scanning electron microscopy, potentiodynamic polarisation and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) were used to study the effect of heat treatment on the properties of the coatings. XRD results indicated that the as-plated coating had either nanocrystalline or a mixture of amorphous and nanocrystalline structure. Heat treatment of the coatings above 400-C produced a mixture of polycrystalline phases. The highest microhardness was achieved for the samples heat treated at 600-C for 15-min because of the precipitation of NixPy phases and formation of an inter-diffusional layer at the substrate/coating interface. The lowest corrosion current density value was obtained for the coatings heat treated at 400/C for 1/h. EIS experiments confirmed the results. View full abstract»

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Aims & Scope

Micro & Nano Letters offers express publication of short research papers presenting research conducted at the forefront of micro- and nanoscale science, engineering and technology, with at least one dimension ranging from a few tens of micrometres to a few nanometres.

Full Aims & Scope

Meet Our Editors

Editors-in-Chief
Professor Gwo-Bin Vincent Lee
National Tsing-Hua University, Taiwan

Professor Peter Dobson
University of Oxford, UK