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materials with unique properties and performance. Nanoceramics is a term used to refer to ceramic materials fabricated from ultrafine particles, i.e., less than 100 nm in diameter. In this field, a great deal of research has been accomplished in the last 20 years and has resulted in significant outcomes that are of great impact academically as well as industrially. Nanoceramics
"NANO" is a buzz word for a reason. By the close of the 20th Century, large-scale industrial operations were run by computers and robots, far exceeding imaginations of 19th Century science fiction writers. This century will see the miniaturization and increased capacity of many things made with materials. Material scientists are challenged to control and build nanostructures to test, discover, and utilize the potential we know exists.
Some of the areas with promise in the early stages of nanotechnology development include:
Controlled Nanostructures for Structural Applications Continuous coatings for corrosive environments Precision blade edges Nozzles and filters Strengthening and toughening of lightweight ceramics
Electronic and Optical Applications Precision thin layer multilayer capacitors Continuous smooth nanocrystalline thin films for sensors and electrochromic materials Size reduction and control of electro-mechanical devices Nanotube arrays
Quantum dot structures Optical filters
Energy Storage and Savings Fuel cells with controlled composition and reproducible behavior Inexpensive solar cells Efficient micro-batteries
Biomedical and Bioactive Applications Biomaterials such as valves for artificial hearts Internal drug release devices DESCRIPTION Nano-ceramics are ceramic materials that utilize nano-technology to ensure that all grains and boundaries enjoy maximum strength and super-plasticity. Nano-ceramics have enhanced dynamic, electrical, calorific, magnetic and optical properties.
MANUFACTURE PROCESS Nano-ceramics are manufactured using the latest advances in the preparation of nano-powders, molding and fritting.
ADVANTAGE Nano-ceramic worktops are especially effective in low-temperature applications where rigidity and fractural strength are key requirements. Surface Coatings in Egyptian Art Characterized Through Spectroscopy
For objects dating back dozens of centuries, very few records of their construction and composition remain. Yet it is extremely important to have accurate information regarding the surface chemistry of art objects when preservation or restorative techniques are applied. Furthermore, it is essential that the object be not
substantially consumed during characterization. To this end, the Cleveland Museum of Art has partnered with the micro spectroscopy laboratory at the NASA Glenn Research Center at Lewis Field to characterize the surface coating of their prized Egyptian antiquities.
Samples from the micro relief of the Nome Gods Bearing Offerings, coffin lids, the bust of Amenhotep III Wearing the Blue Crown (see "Collection / Egyptian highlights tour" for art objects), and other art objects were characterized by Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FT -IR) to determine the composition and, if possible, identify products deterioration associated with aging or centuries. The characterization is complex because the artisans applied selectively in various varnishes multiple locations of a given object. The different surface coatings appear to have been chosen on the basis of aesthetics, such as color and gloss, rather than protection. The process of identifying the original surface composition is further complicated by the treatments used by early Restorers, such as impregnation or painted with beeswax or paraffin materials, materials also used by the original artisans.
FT-IR Clearly distinguishes wax resin from plant materials, but it is not possible at this time to determining if the wax is from an original application or a restorative measure. There are many applications of various plant resins in the construction of art objects. In the case of the bust of Amenhotep III, several sections of carved stone were glued together. The nose sustained damage and was restored with putty. The bust was finished by the application of various colored pigments and varnish. Plant applications include resin putty for restoration artisan or disguise flaws, binder for the various pigments of paint, and varnish to hold the paint in place or provide a glossy appearance. It is difficult to identify the exact plant providing various resins, however, in many cases it is possible with the use of FT-IR, in combination with optical microscopy and fluorescence to differentiate between different resins applied to an object. Finally, materials such as animal hides were used to formulate glues and other liquids that were used in art objects. Animal materials are distinguishable from waxes and resins, but, at this time, we have not identified any in the Egyptian art works that we are examining.
The spectra obtained from coatings on the Nome gods relief, a portrait Nefertiti, and three dummy jars are virtually identical, suggesting that the coatings were of similar material. The quality of the spectra obtained from the bust of Amenhotep are distorted because of contamination or degradation age, but several key peaks in the spectra indicate that this coating is a varnish similar to that on other objects. Aside from the academic value of accurately identifying the methods of
construction, this information is crucial when attempts are made to Reconstruct the original appearance of an object with poorly preserved decorative layers.