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Number of results: 20
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Abstract

Secretory ducts and cavities of roots and rhizomes are typical features of the Cardueae tribe in the Asteraceae family. We used light microscopy to analyze the anatomy of the subterranean organs of 21 species of 13 genera of the Cardueae, with particular attention to the secretory system, interpreted in taxonomic terms. The anatomy of secretory ducts varied greatly. A new measurement quotient, C1 [length of epithelial cells (longitudinal section)] and C2 [length of adjacent cells (longitudinal section)] was established. Different types of ducts are described based on type of development and the size ratios among epithelial cells. Detailed anatomical descriptions of the ducts are given, together with their occurrence in particular taxa. The simultaneous presence of various secretory ducts within a single species and their spatial position relative to other prominent anatomical features provide valuable characters for discriminating the studied Cardueae species. These analyses are of particular interest for identification of herbal drugs as, besides chemical analytical techniques such as chromatographic fingerprinting, light microscopy is a common method for purity controls and thus required in official pharmacopeias.
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Abstract

Evolution of many high technologies such as microelectronics, microsystem technology and nanotechnology involves design, application and testing of technical structures, whose size is being decreased continuously. Scanning probe microscopes (SPM) are therefore increasingly used as diagnostic and measurement instruments. Consequently the demand for standardized calibration routines for this kind of equipment rises. Up to now, there has been no in generally accepted guideline on how to perform SPM calibration procedure. In this article we discuss calibration scheme and focus on several critical aspects of SPM characterization e.g. the determination of the static and dynamic physical properties of the cantilever, the influence factors which need to be considered when plotting a scheme for the calibration of the force and displacement sensitivity.
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Abstract

Mg60Zn35Ca5 amorphous powder alloys were synthesized by mechanical alloying (MA) technique. The results of the influence of high-energy ball-milling time on amorphization of the Mg60Zn35Ca5 elemental blend (intended for biomedical application) were presented in the study. The amorphization process was investigated by X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), transmission electron microscopy (TEM). Initial elemental powders were mechanically alloyed in a Spex 8000 high-energy ball mill at different milling times (from 3 to 24 h). Observation of the powder morphology after various stages of milling leads to the conclusion that with the increase of the milling time the size of the powder particles as well as the degree of aggregation change. The partially amorphous powders were obtained in the Mg60Zn35Ca5 alloy after milling for 13-18h. The results indicate that this technique is a powerful process for preparing Mg60Zn35Ca5 alloys with amorphous and nanocrystalline structure.
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Abstract

The knowledge whether and how chemical species react with tissues is important because of protection against harmful factors, diagnose of dermatological diseases, validation of dermatological procedures as well as effectiveness of topical therapies. In presented work the effects of chemical agents on plates of human fingernails were studied using Atomic Force Microscopy and Scanning Electron Microscopy. Apart from that, mapping of the elastic properties of the nails was also carried out. To obtain reliable measures of spatial evolution of the surface variations, recorded images were analyzed in terms of scaling invariance brought by fractal geometry, instead of common though not unique statistical measures.
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Abstract

In the article we described the evolution of optical technology from lens-type microscopes working in far-field to SNOM (Scanning Near-Field Optical Microscopy) constructions. We considered two systems elaborated in our laboratory, namely PSTM system (Photon Scanning Tunelling Microscope) and SNOM system. In both systems we obtained subwavelength resolution. Some details about optical point probe technology in both systems are given and experimental results presented.
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Abstract

Molecular motors are nature’s nanomachines, and are the essential agents of movement that are an integral part of many living organisms. The supramolecular machine, called the nuclear pore complex (NPC), controls the transport of all cellular material between the cytoplasm and the nucleus that occurs naturally in all biological cells. In the presence of appropriate chemical stimuli, the NPC opens or closes, like a gating mechanism, and permits the flow of material into and out of the nucleus. As a first step in understanding the design characteristics of the NPC, nanoscale studies were conducted to understand the transport characteristics of an idealized NPC model using CFD analysis, discrete element transport and coupled fluid-solid analysis. Results of pressure and velocity profiles obtained from the models indicate that the fluid density, flexibility of walls and the geometry of the flow passage are important in the design of NPC based nano- and micro-motors.
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Abstract

The technique of electrospinning was employed to fabricate uniform one-dimensional inorganic-organic composite nanofibers at room temperature from a solution containing equal volumes of aluminum 2, 4-pentanedionate in acetone and polyvinylpyrrolidone in ethanol. Upon firing and sintering under carefully pre-selected time-temperature profiles (heating rate, temperature and soak time), high-purity and crystalline alumina nanofibers retaining the original morphological features present in the as-spun composite (cermer) fibers were obtained. Tools such as laser Raman spectroscopy, scanning and transmission electron microscopy together with energy dispersive spectroscopy and selected area electron diffraction were employed to follow the systematic evolution of the ceramic phase and its morphological features in the as-spun and the fired fibers. X-ray diffraction was used to identify the crystalline fate of the final product.
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Abstract

The paper presents the microscopic and mechanoacoustic study of degradation processes of the porcelain material C 130 type. This kind of material is used in the production of the most durable and reliable electrotechnical elements. Raw material composition of the studied porcelain was modified. This had an impact on the inner properties, cohesion and – in consequence – on operational properties of the material. Using mechanical-acoustic and microscopic methods of testing of small-size samples that were subjected to compression, it was possible to distinguish successive stages of degradation of the porcelain structure. These stages were generally typical of the porcelain materials. In the authors’ opinion, they are connected to the ageing process happening over many years of work under operating conditions. Optimization of composition and technological properties – important during technological processes – resulted in a slight decrease in inner cohesion of the porcelain. When compared to the reference material – typical domestic C 130 material, mechanical strength was somewhat lower. Carried out investigations proved that resistance of the investigated material to the ageing degradation process – during long term operation – also decreased. The improvement of technological parameters and the reduction in the number of defective elements occurred simultaneously with some decrease in the operational parameters of the material. To restore their initial high level, further work is needed to optimize the raw material composition of the porcelain.
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Abstract

The paper presents results of a research on simulation of magnetic tip-surface interaction as a function of the lift height in the magnetic force microscopy. As expected, magnetic signal monotonically decays with increasing lift height, but the question arises, whether or not optimal lift height eventually exists. To estimate such a lift height simple procedure is proposed in the paper based on the minimization of the fractal dimension of the averaged profile of the MFM signal. In this case, the fractal dimension serves as a measure of distortion of a pure tip-surface magnetic coupling by various side effects, e.g. thermal noise and contribution of topographic features. Obtained simulation results apparently agree with experimental data.
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Abstract

An equiatomic multi-component alloy Ni20Ti20Ta20Co20Cu20 (at. %) was obtained using vacuum arc melting. In order to characterize such an alloy, microstructure analysis has been performed using Scanning and Transmission Electron Microscopy, Electron Backscattered Diffraction, X-ray Diffraction and Energy Dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy techniques. Microstructure analysis revealed the presence of one rhombohedral and two cubic phases. Energy Dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy measurements revealed that both observed phases include five chemical elements in the structure. Using Rietveld refinement approach the lattice parameters were refined for the observed phases.
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Abstract

A new NiTi-based multi-component Ni35Ti35Ta10Co10Cu10 (at.%) alloy was obtained by vacuum arc melting. The microstructure of the alloy has been studied using scanning and transmission electron microscopy, backscatter electron diffraction and X-ray diffraction techniques. The performed measurements showed presence of two cubic and one tetragonal phases. Energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy analysis confirmed that all the observed phases contained all five principal elements.
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Abstract

It is assumed that close to the margins of ice-sheets, glacial, fluvial and aeolian processes overlap, and combined with weathering processes, produce numerous sediments, in which quartz is a common mineral. Quartz grains, if available, may serve as a powerful tool in determining the depositional history, transportation mode and postdepositional processes. However, quartz grain studies in some modern glacial areas are still sparse. In this study, we examine for the first time quartz grains sampled from the modern glacial and proglacial environments of the Russell Glacier, southwest Greenland in binocular microscope and scanning electron microscope, to analyze their shape, character of surface and microtextures. We debate whether the investigated quartz grains reveal glacial characteristics and to what extent they carry a signal of another transportation and sedimentary processes. Although glacial fracturing and abrasion occur in grain suites, most mechanical origin features are not of a high frequency or freshness, potentially suggesting a reduced shear stress in the glacier from its limited thickness and influence of the pressurized water at the ice-bed. In contrast, the signal that originates from the fluvial environment is much stronger derived by numerous aqueous-induced features present on quartz grain surfaces. Aeolian-induced microtextures on grain surfaces increase among the samples the closest to the ice margin, which may be due to enhanced aeolian activity, but are practically absent in sediments taken from the small scale aeolian landforms. In contrast, aeolian grains have been found in the bigger-size (1.0-2.0 mm) investigated fraction. These grains gained the strongest aeolian abrasion, possibly due to changes in transportation mode.
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Abstract

AISI 52100 bearing steels are commonly used in applications requiring high hardness and abrasion resistance. The bearing steels are working under dynamic loads in service conditions and their toughness properties become important. In order to provide the desired mechanical properties, various heat treatments (austenizing, quenching and tempering) are usually applied. In this study, AISI 52100 bearing steel samples were austenized at 900°C for ½ h and water quenched to room temperature. Then tempering was carried out at 795°C, 400°C and 200°C for ½ h. In order to investigate the effect of heat treatment conditions on wear behavior, dry friction tests were performed according to ASTM G99-05 Standard with a ‘ball-on-disk’ type tribometer. The samples were tested against steel and ceramic counterparts using the parameters of 100 m distance and 30 N load and 0.063 m/s rotational speed. After wear test, the surface characterization was carried out using microscopy. Wear loss values were calculated using a novel optical method on both flat and counterpart specimens.
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Abstract

In this paper the authors propose a decision support system for automatic blood smear analysis based on microscopic images. The images are pre-processed in order to remove irrelevant elements and to enhance the most important ones – the healthy blood cells (erythrocytes) and the pathologic ones (echinocytes). The separated blood cells are analysed in terms of their most important features by the eigenfaces method. The features are the basis for designing the neural network classifier, learned to distinguish between erythrocytes and echinocytes. As the result, the proposed system is able to analyse the smear blood images in a fully automatic way and to deliver information on the number and statistics of the red blood cells, both healthy and pathologic. The system was examined in two case studies, involving the canine and human blood, and then consulted with the experienced medicine specialists. The accuracy of classification of red blood cells into erythrocytes and echinocytes reaches 96%.
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Abstract

The objective of the investigation was to identify surface roughness after turning with wedges of coated sintered carbide. The investigation included predicting the average surface roughness in the dry machining of Duplex Stainless Steel (DSS) and the determination of load curves together with roughness profiles for various cutting conditions. The load curves and roughness profiles for various cutting wedges and variable cutting parameters were compared. It has been shown that dry cutting leads to a decrease in friction for lubricated surfaces, providing a small initial contact area where the surface is contacted. The study has been performed within a production facility during the production of electric motor parts and deep-well pumps.
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Abstract

Spatial light modulators (SLM) are devices used to modulate amplitude, phase or polarization of a light wave in space and time. Current SLMs are based either on MEMS (micro-electro-mechanical system) or LCD (liquid crystal display) technology. Here we report on the parameters, trends in development and applications of phase SLMs based on liquid crystal on silicon (LCoS) technology. LCoS technology was developed for front and rear projection systems competing with AMLCD (active matrix LCD) and DMD (Digital Mirror Device) SLM. The reflective arrangement due to silicon backplane allows to put a high number of pixels in a small panel, keeping the fill-factor ratio high even for micron-sized pixels. For coherent photonics applications the most important type of LCoS SLM is a phase modulator. In the paper at first we describe the typical parameters of this device and the methods for its calibration. Later we present a review of applications of phase LCoS SLMs in imaging, metrology and beam manipulation, developed by the authors as well as known from the literature. These include active and adaptive interferometers, a smart holographic camera and holographic display, microscopy modified in illuminating and imaging paths and active sensors.
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Abstract

In this work, vacuum hot pressed Ni-Mn-Sn-In Heusler alloys with different concentration of In (0, 2 and 4 at.%), were investigated. The magneto-structural behaviour and microstructure dependencies on chemical composition and on heat treatment were examined. It was found that the martensite start transformation temperature increases with growing In content and to a lesser extent with increasing temperature of heat treatment. The high energy X-ray synchrotron radiation results, demonstrated that both chemical composition as well as temperature of heat treatment slightly modified the crystal structures of the studied alloys. Microstructural investigation performed by transmission electron microscopy confirmed chemical composition and crystal structure changes in the alloys.
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Abstract

The aim of this work was to investigate the possibility of obtaining an amorphous/crystalline composite starting from Ni-Si- B-based powder grade 1559-40 and silver powder. The alloy was produced using arc melting of 95% wt. Ni-Si-B-based powder (1559-40) and 5% wt. Ag powder. Ingot was re-melted on a copper plate and observed while cooling using a mid-wave infra-red camera. The alloy was then melt-spun in a helium atmosphere. The microstructure of the ingot as well as the melt-spun ribbon was studied using light microscopy and scanning electron microscopy with energy dispersive spectrometry. Phase identification was performed by means of X-ray diffraction. The observations confirmed an amorphous/crystalline microstructure of the ribbon where the predominant constituent of the microstructure was an amorphous phase enriched with Ni, Si, and B, while the minor constituent was an Ag-rich crystalline phase distributed in a film along the melt-spinning direction.
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