T. C. Ho

Lamar University, Beaumont, Texas, United States

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Publications (76)154.75 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Transparent anhydride-bisphenol-A epoxy systems filled with pristine nanosilica were prepared and compared with the counterparts with the nanosilica coated with surface initiated polymerization (SIP) prepared phosphoric acid (H3PO4) doped polyaniline (PANI). The rheological investigation on the bisphenol-A epoxy nanosuspensions demonstrated that the surface coating increased the interaction between nanosilica and the resin matrix. The tensile strength of anhydride-epoxy (83.79 MPa) was increased to 87.00 and 88.78 MPa for the epoxy with the as-received and functionalized nanosilica. The real permittivity of the nanocomposites increased with functionalized nanosilica. The H3PO4 doped PANI decreased the heat release rate of epoxy from 563.0 to 508. 3 W g-1, confirming the fire retadancy behavior of the PANI coating. The obtained cured anhydride-epoxy nanocomposites filled with nanosilica are highly transparent in visible light, which have potential applications in the optical field.
    06/2015; DOI:10.1039/C5TC01392E
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    ABSTRACT: Polyimide (PI) nanocomposite reinforced with Fe3O4 nanoparticles (NPs) at various NPs loadings levels of 5.0, 10.0, 15.0, and 20.0 wt% were prepared. The chemical interactions of the Fe3O4 NPs/PI nanocomposites were characterized using Fourier Transform Infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy. X-ray Diffraction (XRD) results revealed that the addition of NPs had a significant effect on the crystallization of PI. Scanning electron microscope (SEM) and the atomic force microscope (AFM) were used to characterize the dispersion and surface morphology of the Fe3O4 NPs and the PI nanocomposites. The obtained optical band gap of the nanocomposites characterized using Ultraviolet-Visible Diffuse Reflectance Spectroscopy (UV-Vis DRS) was decreased with increasing the Fe3O4 loading. Differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) results showed a continuous increase of Tg with increasing the Fe3O4 NPs loading. Some differences were observed in the onset decomposition temperature between the pure PI and nanocomposites since the NPs and the PI matrix were physically entangled together to form the nanocomposites. The contact angle of pure PI was larger than that of Fe3O4/PI nanocomposites films, and increased with increasing the loading of Fe3O4. The degree of swelling was increased with increasing the Fe3O4 loading and the swelling time. The dielectric properties of the nanocomposite were strongly related to the Fe3O4 loading levels. The Fe3O4/PI magnetic property also had been improved with increasing the loading of the magnetic nanoparticles.
    Superlattices and Microstructures 03/2015; 85. DOI:10.1016/j.spmi.2015.03.008 · 1.98 Impact Factor
  • 14 AIChE Annual Meeting; 11/2014
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    ABSTRACT: Abstracts: * Abstract for Posterof Different carbon filler-PU.docx (18.7KB) - Uploading Abstracts
    14 AIChE Annual Meeting; 11/2014
  • Ziyuan Wang · Qiang Xu · Thomas C. Ho
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    ABSTRACT: To conduct a well-planned plant shutdown, so as to reduce flare emissions for the sake of plant profitability and local environmental sustainability, one of the primary tasks is to perform comprehensive and precise accountings for flare emissions. Since the literature is still lacking systematic and quantitative studies, plant-wide dynamic simulations are employed to simulate an ethylene plant shutdown and characterize its flare emission sources through which dynamic emission profiles of various emission species changing with respect to time are obtained. Plant shutdown emission inventories are enriched with details for point emission sources, and possible technical supports are provided to both industry and environmental agencies on evaluating and developing cost-effective flare minimization strategies in the future.
    Chemical Engineering & Technology 07/2014; 37(7). DOI:10.1002/ceat.201300849 · 2.18 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Hexavalent chromium (Cr(VI)) contamination is increasingly serious in surface water and groundwater, therefore, its removal attracts increasing attention due to its highly toxic to human health. The cost effective and sustainable adsorbents are urgently needed for the remediation of Cr(VI) pollution. Polyanline (PANI), a conductive polymer, has demonstrated a great performance on Cr(VI) removal. But the recycling is the challenge for its application due to its small size. The PANI coating with various substrates is an effective approach to solve this problem. The synthesis methods and applications of the PANI coated magnetic Fe3O4, carbon fabric and cellulose composites for the Cr(VI) removal were reviewed. Finally, this review analyzed the Cr(VI) removal mechanisms by the PANI composites considering the substrate and the PANI coating.
    Applied Surface Science 07/2014; 334. DOI:10.1016/j.apsusc.2014.07.039 · 2.54 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A small external magnetic field of 0.072 T was reported to significantly influence the specific capacitances of the supercapacitor with magnetic carbon - metal (iron, cobalt or nickel) oxides microtubular nanocomposite fabrics as flexible electrodes. The decorated metal oxide species and annealing method (microwave-assisted vs. conventional tubular annealing) were discovered to play important roles in the increase or decrease of the capacitance. All the electrodes demonstrated excellent cycling retention performances, for example, upto similar to 350% for nickel oxide doped carbon nanocomposite electrodes. The corresponding mechanism for the magnetic field influence on the capacitance has been interpreted in term of a synergistic effect of three internal resistances, solution resistance in electrolyte solution, charge transfer resistance at electrode/electrolyte interface and leakage resistance in electric double layer region. The applied magnetic field is able to change the solution resistance due to the magnetohydrodynamic phenomena as well as the electrode resistance (directly corresponds to charge transfer resistance) by the magnetoresistance (MR) behavior.
    Nano Energy 05/2014; 6. DOI:10.1016/j.nanoen.2014.04.002 · 10.21 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We have demonstrated that magnetic carbon nanocomposite fabrics prepared by microwave assisted heating are advanced adsorbents in the removal of Cr(VI) with a much higher removal capacity of 3.74 mg g−1 compared to 0.32 mg g−1 for cotton fabrics and 0.46 mg g−1 for carbon fabrics. The enhanced Cr(VI) removal is attributed to the highly porous structure of the nanocomposites. The adsorption kinetics follow the pseudo-second-order model, which reveals a very large adsorption capacity and high adsorption rate. The removal process takes only 10 min, which is much faster than conventional adsorbents such as activated carbon and biomass that often requires hours of operation. The significantly reduced treatment time and the large adsorption capacity make these nanocomposite fabrics promising for the highly efficient removal of heavy metals from polluted water.
    01/2014; 2(7). DOI:10.1039/C3TA13957C
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    ABSTRACT: This letter describes a facile high temperature microwave assisted process to form the magnetic core-shell carbon nanostructure from polyaniline (PANI)-magnetite (Fe3O4) nanocomposites. The amorphous combined with graphitized carbon shell is observed by the transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The crystalline metallic iron, cementite, Fe3O4 and iron oxide (Fe2O3) are observed in the magnetic core in the M̈ossbauer spectrum measurements. The increased magnetic properties are observed in the formed core-shell carbon nanostructure after microwave annealing. The formed solid carbon nanostructure can protect the material from the acid dissolution and magnetic core favors the recycling of material.
    09/2013; 2(12):M65-M68. DOI:10.1149/2.001312ssl
  • Tianxing Cai · Sujing Wang · Qiang Xu · Thomas C. Ho
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    ABSTRACT: Chemical facilities, where large amounts of chemicals and fuels are processed, manufactured, and housed, are at high risk to originate air emission events, including intensive flaring and toxic gas release caused by various uncertainties such as equipment failure, false operation, natural disaster, or terrorist attack. Based on an available air-quality-monitoring network, to detect the possible emission sources (chemical plants) for an observed emission event, so as to support diagnostic and prognostic decisions in a timely and effective manner, a systematic method for abnormal emission identifications should be employed. In this article, a systematic methodology for such applications has been developed. It includes two stages of modeling and optimization work: (1) the determination of background normal emission rates from multiple emission sources and (2) multiobjective optimization for emission-source identification and quantification. This method not only can determine emission source location, starting time, and time duration responsible for an observed emission event, but can also estimate in reverse the dynamic emission rate and total emission amount from an accidental emission source. It provides valuable information for investigations of accidents and root-cause analysis for emission events; meanwhile, it helps evaluate the regional air-quality impact caused by such emission events as well. Case studies including the detection of a real SO2 emission event are employed to demonstrate the efficacy of the developed methodology.
    Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research 06/2013; 52(26):9189–9202. DOI:10.1021/ie400568c · 2.24 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: This article provides an overview of current research activities on the synthesis and applications of magnetic nanocomposites, especially highlights their potential environmental remediations such as heavy metal (Cr, As, Pd, Hg) removal. After a brief introduction of the emergency situation of heavy metal pollution all over the world and current techniques designed to deal with these situations, different synthetic methods to fabricate various types of magnetic nanocomposites will be reviewed. The focus is to reveal the advantages of magnetic nanocomposites as an efficient adsorbent which is able to reduce the heavy metal concentrations well below the EPA requirement. At the same time, the conventional process can be redesigned to be an economic and energetic one without using extra energy to recycle the adsorbent, which is desired for future. This review mainly deals with the heavy metal removal using magnetic nanocomposites, the adsorption behaviors of heavy metal ions on the surface of novel adsorbents are well investigated including the concentration effect of both contaminants and adsorbents, adsorption kinetics, solution pH effect with regards to real application. © 2013 The Society of Powder Technology Japan. Published by Elsevier B.V. and The Society of Powder Technology Japan. All rights reserved.
    Advanced Powder Technology 03/2013; 24(2):459-467. DOI:10.1016/j.apt.2012.10.012 · 1.64 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Contrary to the helical carbon structure from pure cotton fabrics under microwave heating and radical oxidized ignition of nanoparticles from conventional heating, magnetic carbon tubular nanocomposite fabrics decorated with uniformly dispersed Co-Co(3)O(4) nanoparticles were successfully synthesized via a microwave heating process using cotton fabric and inorganic salt as precursors, which have shown better anti-corrosive performance and demonstrated great potential as novel electrochemical pseudocapacitor electrode.
    Nanoscale 02/2013; 5(5). DOI:10.1039/c2nr33464j · 7.39 Impact Factor
  • Journal of Water Resource and Protection 01/2013; 05(08):792-800. DOI:10.4236/jwarp.2013.58080
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    ABSTRACT: Magnetic carbon nanostructures from microwave assisted- and conventional-pyrolysis processes are compared. Unlike graphitized carbon shells from conventional heating, different carbon shell morphologies including nanotubes, nanoflakes and amorphous carbon were observed. Crystalline iron and cementite were observed in the magnetic core, different from a single cementite phase from the conventional process.
    Chemical Communications 11/2012; 49(3). DOI:10.1039/c2cc36810b · 6.83 Impact Factor
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    Paul Chiou · Weiwen Miao · T.C. Ho
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    ABSTRACT: Structural engineers use the extreme or fastest values of wind speed with return periods such as 25 years for structures having no human occupants or where there is a negligible risk to human life, 50 years for most permanent structures, and 100 years for structures with an unusually high degree of hazard of life and property in case of failure. The data of 41 annual maximum 10-minute average wind speeds at Pisa Airport in Italy from 1951 to 1991 were analyzed and modeled. Three extreme value models for the data were considered and compared. Subsequently, the required design value with a given return period of exceedance was obtained.
    06/2012; 3(3):258-262. DOI:10.7763/IJESD.2012.V3.227
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    ABSTRACT: A waste-free process to recycle Fe@Fe2O3/polypropylene (PP) polymer nanocomposites (PNCs) is introduced to synthesize magnetic carbon nanocomposites (MCNCs) and simultaneously produce useful chemical species which can be utilized as a feedstock in petrochemical industry. The magnetic nanoparticles (NPs) are found to have an effective catalytic activity on the pyrolysis of PP. The PNCs (with a NP loading of 20.0 wt%) undergo a complete degradation with 2 h pyrolysis at 500 °C in a H2/Ar atmosphere and the degradation components exhibit a distribution of species with different numbers of carbon, while only 40% of pure PP is decomposed after applying the same pyrolytic conditions. The coked solid waste from the conventional process has been utilized as a carbon source to form a protective carbon shell surrounding the magnetic NPs. The magnetic carbon nanocomposites (MCNCs) pyrolyzed from PNCs containing 20.0 wt% NPs demonstrate extremely fast Cr(VI) removal from wastewater with the almost complete removal of Cr(VI) within 10 min. The pH effect on the Cr(VI) removal efficiency is investigated with a preferable value of 1–3. The adsorbent exhibits much higher adsorption capacity in acidic solutions than that in alkali solutions. The large saturation magnetization (32.5 emu g−1) of these novel magnetic carbon nanocomposites allows fast recycling of both the adsorbents and the adsorbed Cr(VI) from the liquid suspension in a more energetically and economically sustainable way by simply applying a permanent magnet. The significantly reduced treatment time required to remove the Cr(VI) makes these MCNCs promising for the efficient removal of the heavy metals from wastewater. Kinetic investigation reveals the pseudo-second-order adsorption of Cr(VI) on these novel magnetic carbon nanocomposite adsorbents.
    RSC Advances 05/2012; 2(11):4844-4856. DOI:10.1039/C2RA01150F · 3.84 Impact Factor
  • Jie Fu · Chuanyu Zhao · Qiang Xu · Thomas C. Ho
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    ABSTRACT: Multistage material-handling (MSMH) processes are broadly possessed by industries for manufacturing massive amounts of workpieces (jobs), where hoists are usually employed by following certain movement schedules based on the job-processing recipes. In this paper, we consider a common situation that an existing MSMH production line has reached its maximum productivity; in order to debottleneck the production and increase its productivity, some units will be retrofitted to increase their job-processing capacity under a fixed budget. Under this situation, which units need to be retrofitted and how many additional capacities will be added to those retrofitted units have to be optimally determined. Correspondingly, since process design has changed, the hoist schedule also needs to be adjusted. Apparently, the best way to deal with such an MSMH debottleneck problem requires the consideration of both the process retrofit and hoist rescheduling at the same time. In this paper, an MILP (mixed integer linear programming) based model is developed to simultaneously identify the best retrofit design and hoist schedule to obtain the maximum productivity under a fixed retrofit budget. On the basis of this development, different retrofit and hoist-scheduling scenarios under different budgets can also be examined, so that the Pareto frontier balancing both retrofit investment and productivity can be identified, which will provide the comprehensive decision support for an MSMH debottleneck problem. The efficacy of the proposed methodology has been demonstrated by case studies.
    Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research 04/2012; 52(1):123–133. DOI:10.1021/ie300550a · 2.24 Impact Factor
  • Jiahua Zhu · Suying Wei · Thomas C. Ho · Zhanhu Guo
    5th Asian Particle Technology Symposium; 01/2012
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    ABSTRACT: The Upper Rio Grande River extends from the Texas-New Mexico state line downstream to the International Amistad Dam, a length of 650 miles (1,045 km). With increasing population and urbanization, the water in this segment is becoming high in salts and bacteria. The water quality problem compounded with the concern over water shortage is a serious issue for this Rio Grande River Basin. Airborne pollutants such as SO42- and NO3- can reach earth surface via wet deposition or dry deposition, which can pollute the earth’s valuable water resources. The objectives of this study were to collect and analyze data to understand the effect of airborne particulate pollution on the water quality in the Rio Grande Basin and to simulate the acidity of the water in the Amistad Reservoir using the CE-QUAL-W2 under different flow and precipitation conditions. An analysis of the collected data on wet deposition has indicated that the pH values and the concentration of ions in the rainwater vary with the amount of rainfall in each rain event. A higher concentration of SO42- and NO3- increases the acidity of the rain water in the ranges between pH=4.9 and pH=5.4 while a higher concentration of Ca2+ and Na+ decreases the acidity of the rainwater in the ranges between pH=5.5 and pH=5.8. A higher amount of rainfall in each rain event tends to decrease the concentration of ions which may increase or decrease the pH of the rainwater depending on the dominating ion species, i.e., SO42-/NO3- or Ca2+/Na+. An analysis of the collected river water data show that the pH in the Rio Grande River water is much higher than the rainwater pH and is in the ranges between pH=7.8 and pH=8.3 due to the buffering effect of Ca2+ in the river water. The pH in the river water has been observed to vary with the water temperature, which decreases with an increase in water temperature. In addition, the pH decreases when the river flow rate increases due to rainfall, which mainly is because of the decrease in Ca2+ concentration due to the rainwater dilution and the delayed dissolution of CaCO3 into Ca2+ in the river water. The results from pH simulations of the Amistad Reservoir water in 2004 based on the two-dimensional water quality and hydrodynamics model, CE-QUAL-W2, have indicated that the precipitation decreases the pH by about 0.1 to 0.15 as compared to the no rain condition. The water pH in the reservoir is observed to vary inversely with water temperature. However, the pH variation is insignificant when the rates of river flow are significantly reduced from the original flow rates.
    2011 AIChE Annual Meeting; 10/2011
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    01/2011; DOI:10.7763/IJESD.2011.V2.152