International Science Index

224
10007796
Enhanced Performance of an All-Vanadium Redox Flow Battery Employing Graphene Modified Carbon Paper Electrodes
Abstract:
Fuel cell grade gas-diffusion layer carbon paper (CP) electrodes are subjected to electrophoresis in N,N’-dimethylformamide (DMF) consisting of reduced graphene oxide (rGO). The rGO modified electrodes are compared with CP in a single asymmetric all-vanadium redox battery system (employing a double serpentine flow channel for each half-cell). Peak power densities improved by 4% when the rGO deposits were facing the ion-exchange membrane (cell performance was poorer when the rGO was facing the flow field). Cycling of the cells showed least degradation of the CP electrodes that were coated with rGO in comparison to pristine samples.
Paper Detail
9
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223
10007624
The Effect of Ultrasound on Permeation Flux and Changes in Blocking Mechanisms during Dead-End Microfiltration of Carrot Juice
Abstract:

Carrot juice is one of the most nutritious foods that are consumed around the world. Large particles in carrot juice causing turbid appearance make some problems in the concentration process such as off-flavor due to the large particles burnt on the walls of evaporators. Microfiltration (MF) is a pressure driven membrane separation method that can clarify fruit juices without enzymatic treatment. Fouling is the main problem in the membrane process causing reduction of permeate flux. Ultrasound as a cleaning technique was applied at 20 kHz to reduce fouling in membrane clarification of carrot juice using dead-end MF system with polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) membrane. Results showed that application of ultrasound waves reduce diphasic characteristic of carrot juice and permeate flux increased. Evaluation of different membrane fouling mechanisms showed that application of ultrasound waves changed creation time of each fouling mechanism. Also, its behavior was changed with varying transmembrane pressure.

Paper Detail
36
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222
10007701
Separation Characteristics of Dissolved Gases from Water Concurrently Variable Mixed with Exhalations for the Hollow Fiber Membrane
Authors:
Abstract:

Water contains dissolved oxygen that a fish needs to breathe. It is important to increase the amounts of separation of dissolved oxygen from water for diverse applications using the separation system. In this paper, a separation system of dissolved gases from water concurrently variable mixed with the exhalations using a compressor is proposed. This system takes use of exhalations to increase the amounts of separation of dissolved oxygen from water. A compressor with variable off-time and on-time is used to control the exhalations mixed with inlet water. Exhalations contain some portion of carbon dioxide, oxygen, and nitrogen. Separation of dissolved gases containing dissolved oxygen is enhanced by using exhalations. The amounts of separation and the compositions of carbon dioxide and oxygen are measured. Higher amounts of separation can make the size of the separation device smaller, and then, application areas are diversified.

Paper Detail
34
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221
10007344
Solid-Liquid-Polymer Mixed Matrix Membrane Using Liquid Additive Adsorbed on Activated Carbon Dispersed in Polymeric Membrane for CO2/CH4 Separation
Abstract:
Gas separation by selective transport through polymeric membranes is one of the rapid growing branches of membrane technology. However, the tradeoff between the permeability and selectivity is one of the critical challenges encountered by pure polymer membranes, which in turn limits their large-scale application. To enhance gas separation performances, mixed matrix membranes (MMMs) have been developed. In this study, MMMs were prepared by a solution-coating method and tested for CO2/CH4 separation through permeability and selectivity using a membrane testing unit at room temperature and a pressure of 100 psig. The fabricated MMMs were composed of silicone rubber dispersed with the activated carbon individually absorbed with polyethylene glycol (PEG) as a liquid additive. PEG emulsified silicone rubber MMMs showed superior gas separation on cellulose acetate membrane with both high permeability and selectivity compared with silicone rubber membrane and alone support membrane. However, the MMMs performed limited stability resulting from the undesirable PEG leakage. To stabilize the MMMs, PEG was then incorporated into activated carbon by adsorption. It was found that the incorporation of solid and liquid was effective to improve the separation performance of MMMs.
Paper Detail
98
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220
10007455
Structure and Properties of Meltblown Polyetherimide as High Temperature Filter Media
Abstract:

Polyetherimide (PEI), an engineering plastic with very high glass transition temperature and excellent chemical and thermal stability, has been processed into a controlled porosity filter media of varying pore size, performance, and surface characteristics. A special grade of the PEI was processed by melt blowing to produce microfiber nonwovens suitable as filter media. The resulting microfiber webs were characterized to evaluate their structure and properties. The fiber webs were further modified by hot pressing, a post processing technique, which reduces the pore size in order to improve the barrier properties of the resulting membranes. This ongoing research has shown that PEI can be a good candidate for filter media requiring high temperature and chemical resistance with good mechanical properties. Also, by selecting the appropriate processing conditions, it is possible to achieve desired filtration performance from this engineering plastic.

Paper Detail
77
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219
10007554
Improving Gas Separation Performance of Poly(Vinylidene Fluoride) Based Membranes Containing Ionic Liquid
Abstract:

Polymer based membranes are one of the low-cost technologies available for the gas separation. Three major elements required for a commercial gas separating membrane are high permeability, high selectivity, and good mechanical strength. Poly(vinylidene fluoride) (PVDF) is a commercially available fluoropolymer and a widely used membrane material in gas separation devices since it possesses remarkable thermal, chemical stability, and excellent mechanical strength. The PVDF membrane was chemically modified by soaking in different ionic liquids and dried. The thermal behavior of modified membranes was investigated by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), and thermogravimetry (TGA), and the results clearly show the best affinity between the ionic liquid and the polymer support. The porous structure of the PVDF membranes was clearly seen in the scanning electron microscopy (SEM) images. The CO₂ permeability of blended membranes was explored in comparison with the unmodified matrix. The ionic liquid immobilized in the hydrophobic PVDF support exhibited good performance for separations of CO₂/N₂. The improved permeability of modified membrane (PVDF-IL) is attributed to the high concentration of nitrogen rich imidazolium moieties.

Paper Detail
41
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218
10006893
Molecular Characterization of Echinococcus granulosus through Amplification of 12S rRNA Gene and Cox1 Gene Fragments from Cattle in Chittagong, Bangladesh
Abstract:

The dog tapeworms Echinococcus granulosus develop hydatid cysts in various organs in human and domestic animals worldwide including Bangladesh. The aim of this study was to identify and characterize the genotype of E. granulosus isolated from cattle using 12S rRNA and Cytochrome oxidase 1 (COX 1) genes. A total of 43 hydatid cyst samples were collected from 390 examined cattle samples derived from slaughterhouses. Among them, three cysts were fertile. Genomic DNA was extracted from germinal membrane and/or protoscoleces followed by PCR amplification of mitochondrial 12S rRNA and Cytochrome oxidase 1 gene fragments. The sequence data revealed existence of G1 (64.28%) and possible G3 (21.43%) genotypes for the first time in Bangladesh. The study indicates that common sheep strain G1 is the dominant subtype of E. granulosus in Chittagong region of Bangladesh. This will increase our understanding of the epidemiology of hydatidosis in the southern part of the country and will be useful to plan suitable control measures in the long run.

Paper Detail
144
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217
10007782
Ellagic Acid Enhanced Apoptotic Radiosensitivity via G1 Cell Cycle Arrest and γ-H2AX Foci Formation in HeLa Cells in vitro
Abstract:
Radiation therapy is an effective vital strategy used globally in the treatment of cervical cancer. However, radiation efficacy principally depends on the radiosensitivity of the tumor, and not all patient exhibit significant response to irradiation. A radiosensitive tumor is easier to cure than a radioresistant tumor which later advances to local recurrence and metastasis. Herbal polyphenols are gaining attention for exhibiting radiosensitization through various signaling. Current work focuses to study the radiosensitization effect of ellagic acid (EA), on HeLa cells. EA intermediated radiosensitization of HeLa cells was due to the induction γ-H2AX foci formation, G1 phase cell cycle arrest, and loss of reproductive potential, growth inhibition, drop in the mitochondrial membrane potential and protein expression studies that eventually induced apoptosis. Irradiation of HeLa in presence of EA (10 μM) to doses of 2 and 4 Gy γ-radiation produced marked tumor cytotoxicity. EA also demonstrated radio-protective effect on normal cell, NIH3T3 and aided recovery from the radiation damage. Our results advocate EA to be an effective adjuvant for improving cancer radiotherapy as it displays striking tumor cytotoxicity and reduced normal cell damage instigated by irradiation.
Paper Detail
8
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216
10006503
Microbial Fuel Cells and Their Applications in Electricity Generating and Wastewater Treatment
Authors:
Abstract:

This research is an experimental research which was done about microbial fuel cells in order to study them for electricity generating and wastewater treatment. These days, it is very important to find new, clean and sustainable ways for energy supplying. Because of this reason there are many researchers around the world who are studying about new and sustainable energies. There are different ways to produce these kind of energies like: solar cells, wind turbines, geothermal energy, fuel cells and many other ways. Fuel cells have different types one of these types is microbial fuel cell. In this research, an MFC was built in order to study how it can be used for electricity generating and wastewater treatment. The microbial fuel cell which was used in this research is a reactor that has two tanks with a catalyst solution. The chemical reaction in microbial fuel cells is a redox reaction. The microbial fuel cell in this research is a two chamber MFC. Anode chamber is an anaerobic one (ABR reactor) and the other chamber is a cathode chamber. Anode chamber consists of stabilized sludge which is the source of microorganisms that do redox reaction. The main microorganisms here are: Propionibacterium and Clostridium. The electrodes of anode chamber are graphite pages. Cathode chamber consists of graphite page electrodes and catalysts like: O2, KMnO4 and C6N6FeK4. The membrane which separates the chambers is Nafion117. The reason of choosing this membrane is explained in the complete paper. The main goal of this research is to generate electricity and treating wastewater. It was found that when you use electron receptor compounds like: O2, MnO4, C6N6FeK4 the velocity of electron receiving speeds up and in a less time more current will be achieved. It was found that the best compounds for this purpose are compounds which have iron in their chemical formula. It is also important to pay attention to the amount of nutrients which enters to bacteria chamber. By adding extra nutrients in some cases the result will be reverse.  By using ABR the amount of chemical oxidation demand reduces per day till it arrives to a stable amount.

Paper Detail
204
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215
10006359
Application of Liquid Emulsion Membrane Technique for the Removal of Cadmium(II) from Aqueous Solutions Using Aliquat 336 as a Carrier
Abstract:
In the present work, emulsion liquid membrane (ELM) technique was applied for the extraction of cadmium(II) present in aqueous samples. Aliquat 336 (Chloride tri-N-octylmethylammonium) was used as carrier to extract cadmium(II). The main objective of this work is to investigate the influence of various parameters affected the ELM formation and its stability and testing the performance of the prepared ELM on removal of cadmium by using synthetic solution with different concentrations. Experiments were conducted to optimize pH of the feed solution and it was found that cadmium(II) can be extracted at pH 6.5. The influence of the carrier concentration and treat ratio on the extraction process was investigated. The obtained results showed that the optimal values are respectively 3% (Aliquat 336) and a ratio (feed: emulsion) equal to 1:1.
Paper Detail
292
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214
10006534
Performance Study of Neodymium Extraction by Carbon Nanotubes Assisted Emulsion Liquid Membrane Using Response Surface Methodology
Abstract:
The high purity rare earth elements (REEs) have been vastly used in the field of chemical engineering, metallurgy, nuclear energy, optical, magnetic, luminescence and laser materials, superconductors, ceramics, alloys, catalysts, and etc. Neodymium is one of the most abundant rare earths. By development of a neodymium–iron–boron (Nd–Fe–B) permanent magnet, the importance of neodymium has dramatically increased. Solvent extraction processes have many operational limitations such as large inventory of extractants, loss of solvent due to the organic solubility in aqueous solutions, volatilization of diluents, etc. One of the promising methods of liquid membrane processes is emulsion liquid membrane (ELM) which offers an alternative method to the solvent extraction processes. In this work, a study on Nd extraction through multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) assisted ELM using response surface methodology (RSM) has been performed. The ELM composed of diisooctylphosphinic acid (CYANEX 272) as carrier, MWCNTs as nanoparticles, Span-85 (sorbitan triooleate) as surfactant, kerosene as organic diluent and nitric acid as internal phase. The effects of important operating variables namely, surfactant concentration, MWCNTs concentration, and treatment ratio were investigated. Results were optimized using a central composite design (CCD) and a regression model for extraction percentage was developed. The 3D response surfaces of Nd(III) extraction efficiency were achieved and significance of three important variables and their interactions on the Nd extraction efficiency were found out. Results indicated that introducing the MWCNTs to the ELM process led to increasing the Nd extraction due to higher stability of membrane and mass transfer enhancement. MWCNTs concentration of 407 ppm, Span-85 concentration of 2.1 (%v/v) and treatment ratio of 10 were achieved as the optimum conditions. At the optimum condition, the extraction of Nd(III) reached the maximum of 99.03%.
Paper Detail
172
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213
10006535
Optimization of Samarium Extraction via Nanofluid-Based Emulsion Liquid Membrane Using Cyanex 272 as Mobile Carrier
Abstract:

Samarium as a rare-earth element is playing a growing important role in high technology. Traditional methods for extraction of rare earth metals such as ion exchange and solvent extraction have disadvantages of high investment and high energy consumption. Emulsion liquid membrane (ELM) as an improved solvent extraction technique is an effective transport method for separation of various compounds from aqueous solutions. In this work, the extraction of samarium from aqueous solutions by ELM was investigated using response surface methodology (RSM). The organic membrane phase of the ELM was a nanofluid consisted of multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWCNT), Span80 as surfactant, Cyanex 272 as mobile carrier, and kerosene as base fluid. 1 M nitric acid solution was used as internal aqueous phase. The effects of the important process parameters on samarium extraction were investigated, and the values of these parameters were optimized using the Central Composition Design (CCD) of RSM. These parameters were the concentration of MWCNT in nanofluid, the carrier concentration, and the volume ratio of organic membrane phase to internal phase (Roi). The three-dimensional (3D) response surfaces of samarium extraction efficiency were obtained to visualize the individual and interactive effects of the process variables. A regression model for % extraction was developed, and its adequacy was evaluated. The result shows that % extraction improves by using MWCNT nanofluid in organic membrane phase and extraction efficiency of 98.92% can be achieved under the optimum conditions. In addition, demulsification was successfully performed and the recycled membrane phase was proved to be effective in the optimum condition.

Paper Detail
154
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212
10006445
Thermodynamic Analyses of Information Dissipation along the Passive Dendritic Trees and Active Action Potential
Abstract:

Brain information transmission in the neuronal network occurs in the form of electrical signals. Neural work transmits information between the neurons or neurons and target cells by moving charged particles in a voltage field; a fraction of the energy utilized in this process is dissipated via entropy generation. Exergy loss and entropy generation models demonstrate the inefficiencies of the communication along the dendritic trees. In this study, neurons of 4 different animals were analyzed with one dimensional cable model with N=6 identical dendritic trees and M=3 order of symmetrical branching. Each branch symmetrically bifurcates in accordance with the 3/2 power law in an infinitely long cylinder with the usual core conductor assumptions, where membrane potential is conserved in the core conductor at all branching points. In the model, exergy loss and entropy generation rates are calculated for each branch of equivalent cylinders of electrotonic length (L) ranging from 0.1 to 1.5 for four different dendritic branches, input branch (BI), and sister branch (BS) and two cousin branches (BC-1 & BC-2). Thermodynamic analysis with the data coming from two different cat motoneuron studies show that in both experiments nearly the same amount of exergy is lost while generating nearly the same amount of entropy. Guinea pig vagal motoneuron loses twofold more exergy compared to the cat models and the squid exergy loss and entropy generation were nearly tenfold compared to the guinea pig vagal motoneuron model. Thermodynamic analysis show that the dissipated energy in the dendritic tress is directly proportional with the electrotonic length, exergy loss and entropy generation. Entropy generation and exergy loss show variability not only between the vertebrate and invertebrates but also within the same class. Concurrently, single action potential Na+ ion load, metabolic energy utilization and its thermodynamic aspect contributed for squid giant axon and mammalian motoneuron model. Energy demand is supplied to the neurons in the form of Adenosine triphosphate (ATP). Exergy destruction and entropy generation upon ATP hydrolysis are calculated. ATP utilization, exergy destruction and entropy generation showed differences in each model depending on the variations in the ion transport along the channels.

Paper Detail
117
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211
10005822
Micropower Composite Nanomaterials Based on Porous Silicon for Renewable Energy Sources
Abstract:
The original controlled technology for power active nanocomposite membrane-electrode assembly engineering on the basis of porous silicon is presented. The functional nanocomposites were studied by electron microscopy and cyclic voltammetry methods. The application possibility of the obtained nanocomposites as high performance renewable energy sources for micro-power electronic devices is demonstrated.
Paper Detail
272
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210
10005848
Hydrogen Permeability of BSCY Proton-Conducting Perovskite Membrane
Abstract:

Perovskite-type membrane Ba0.5Sr0.5Ce0.9Y0.1O3-δ (BSCY) was successfully synthesized by liquid citrate method. The hydrogen permeation and stability of BSCY perovskite-type membranes were studied at high temperatures. The phase structure of the powder was characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD). Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) was used to characterize microstructures of the membrane sintered under various conditions. SEM results showed that increasing in sintering temperature, formed dense membrane with clear grains. XRD results for BSCY membrane that sintered in 1150 °C indicated single phase perovskite structure with orthorhombic configuration, and SEM results showed dense structure with clear grain size which is suitable for permeation tests. Partial substitution of Sr with Ba in SCY structure improved the hydrogen permeation flux through the membrane due to the larger ionic radius of Ba2+. BSCY membrane shows high hydrogen permeation flux of 1.6 ml/min.cm2 at 900 °C and partial pressure of 0.6.

Paper Detail
207
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209
10005849
H2 Permeation Properties of a Catalytic Membrane Reactor in Methane Steam Reforming Reaction
Abstract:
Cylindrical alumina microfiltration membrane (GMITM Corporation, inside diameter=9 mm, outside diameter=13 mm, length= 50 mm) with an average pore size of 0.5 micrometer and porosity of about 0.35 was used as the support for membrane reactor. This support was soaked in boehmite sols, and the mean particle size was adjusted in the range of 50 to 500 nm by carefully controlling hydrolysis time, and calcined at 650 °C for two hours. This process was repeated with different boehmite solutions in order to achieve an intermediate layer with an average pore size of about 50 nm. The resulting substrate was then coated with a thin and dense layer of silica by counter current chemical vapour deposition (CVD) method. A boehmite sol with 10 wt.% of nickel which was prepared by a standard procedure was used to make the catalytic layer. BET, SEM, and XRD analysis were used to characterize this layer. The catalytic membrane reactor was placed in an experimental setup to evaluate the permeation and hydrogen separation performance for a steam reforming reaction. The setup consisted of a tubular module in which the membrane was fixed, and the reforming reaction occurred at the inner side of the membrane. Methane stream, diluted with nitrogen, and deionized water with a steam to carbon (S/C) ratio of 3.0 entered the reactor after the reactor was heated up to 500 °C with a specified rate of 2 °C/ min and the catalytic layer was reduced at presence of hydrogen for 2.5 hours. Nitrogen flow was used as sweep gas through the outer side of the reactor. Any liquid produced was trapped and separated at reactor exit by a cold trap, and the produced gases were analyzed by an on-line gas chromatograph (Agilent 7890A) to measure total CH4 conversion and H2 permeation. BET analysis indicated uniform size distribution for catalyst with average pore size of 280 nm and average surface area of 275 m2.g-1. Single-component permeation tests were carried out for hydrogen, methane, and carbon dioxide at temperature range of 500-800 °C, and the results showed almost the same permeance and hydrogen selectivity values for hydrogen as the composite membrane without catalytic layer. Performance of the catalytic membrane was evaluated by applying membranes as a membrane reactor for methane steam reforming reaction at gas hourly space velocity (GHSV) of 10,000 h−1 and 2 bar. CH4 conversion increased from 50% to 85% with increasing reaction temperature from 600 °C to 750 °C, which is sufficiently above equilibrium curve at reaction conditions, but slightly lower than membrane reactor with packed nickel catalytic bed because of its higher surface area compared to the catalytic layer.
Paper Detail
186
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208
10005852
Production and Purification of Monosaccharides by Hydrolysis of Sugar Cane Bagasse in an Ionic Liquid Medium
Abstract:

The conversion of lignocellulosic waste materials, such as sugar cane bagasse, to biofuels such as ethanol has attracted significant interest as a potential element for transforming transport fuel supplies to totally renewable sources. However, the refractory nature of the cellulosic structure of lignocellulosic materials has impeded progress on developing an economic process, whereby the cellulose component may be effectively broken down to glucose monosaccharides and then purified to allow downstream fermentation. Ionic liquid (IL) treatment of lignocellulosic biomass has been shown to disrupt the crystalline structure of cellulose thus potentially enabling the cellulose to be more readily hydrolysed to monosaccharides. Furthermore, conventional hydrolysis of lignocellulosic materials yields byproducts that are inhibitors for efficient fermentation of the monosaccharides. However, selective extraction of monosaccharides from an aqueous/IL phase into an organic phase utilizing a combination of boronic acids and quaternary amines has shown promise as a purification process. Hydrolysis of sugar cane bagasse immersed in an aqueous solution with IL (1-ethyl-3-methylimidazolium acetate) was conducted at different pH and temperature below 100 ºC. It was found that the use of a high concentration of hydrochloric acid to acidify the solution inhibited the hydrolysis of bagasse. At high pH (i.e. basic conditions), using sodium hydroxide, catalyst yields were reduced for total reducing sugars (TRS) due to the rapid degradation of the sugars formed. For purification trials, a supported liquid membrane (SLM) apparatus was constructed, whereby a synthetic solution containing xylose and glucose in an aqueous IL phase was transported across a membrane impregnated with phenyl boronic acid/Aliquat 336 to an aqueous phase. The transport rate of xylose was generally higher than that of glucose indicating that a SLM scheme may not only be useful for purifying sugars from undesirable toxic compounds, but also for fractionating sugars to improve fermentation efficiency.

Paper Detail
279
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207
10006030
Apoptotic Induction Ability of Harmalol and Its Binding: Biochemical and Biophysical Perspectives
Authors:
Abstract:

Harmalol administration caused remarkable reduction in proliferation of HepG2 cells with GI50 of 14.2 mM, without showing much cytotoxicity in embryonic liver cell line, WRL-68. Data from circular dichroism and differential scanning calorimetric analysis of harmalol-CT DNA complex shows conformational changes with prominent CD perturbation and stabilization of CT DNA by 8 oC. Binding constant and stoichiometry was also calculated using the above biophysical techniques. Further, dose dependent apoptotic induction ability of harmalol was studied in HepG2 cells using different biochemical assays. Generation of ROS, DNA damage, changes in cellular external and ultramorphology, alteration of membrane, formation of comet tail, decreased mitochondrial membrane potential and a significant increase in Sub Go/G1 population made the cancer cell, HepG2, prone to apoptosis. Up regulation of p53 and caspase 3 further indicated the apoptotic role of harmalol.

Paper Detail
367
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206
10006134
Implicit Eulerian Fluid-Structure Interaction Method for the Modeling of Highly Deformable Elastic Membranes
Abstract:
This paper is concerned with the development of a fully implicit and purely Eulerian fluid-structure interaction method tailored for the modeling of the large deformations of elastic membranes in a surrounding Newtonian fluid. We consider a simplified model for the mechanical properties of the membrane, in which the surface strain energy depends on the membrane stretching. The fully Eulerian description is based on the advection of a modified surface tension tensor, and the deformations of the membrane are tracked using a level set strategy. The resulting nonlinear problem is solved by a Newton-Raphson method, featuring a quadratic convergence behavior. A monolithic solver is implemented, and we report several numerical experiments aimed at model validation and illustrating the accuracy of the presented method. We show that stability is maintained for significantly larger time steps.
Paper Detail
413
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205
10006162
Wastewater Treatment and Bio-Electricity Generation via Microbial Fuel Cell Technology Operating with Starch Proton Exchange Membrane
Abstract:

Biotechnology in recent times has tried to develop a mechanism whereby sustainable electricity can be generated by the activity of microorganisms on waste and renewable biomass (often regarded as “negative value”) in a device called microbial fuel cell, MFC. In this paper, we established how the biocatalytic activities of bacteria on organic matter (substrates) produced some electrons with the associated removal of some water pollution parameters; Biochemical oxygen demand (BOD), chemical oxygen demand (COD) to the tune of 77.2% and 88.3% respectively from a petrochemical sanitary wastewater. The electricity generation was possible by conditioning the bacteria to operate anaerobically in one chamber referred to as the anode while the electrons are transferred to the fully aerated counter chamber containing the cathode. Power densities ranging from 12.83 mW/m2 to 966.66 mW/m2 were achieved using a dual-chamber starch membrane MFC experimental set-up. The maximum power density obtained in this research shows an improvement in the use of low cost MFC set up to achieve power production. Also, the level of organic matter removal from the sanitary waste water by the operation of this device clearly demonstrates its potential benefit in achieving an improved benign environment. The beauty of the MFCs is their potential utility in areas lacking electrical infrastructures like in most developing countries.

Paper Detail
187
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204
10006185
An Implicit Methodology for the Numerical Modeling of Locally Inextensible Membranes
Abstract:
We present in this paper a fully implicit finite element method tailored for the numerical modeling of inextensible fluidic membranes in a surrounding Newtonian fluid. We consider a highly simplified version of the Canham-Helfrich model for phospholipid membranes, in which the bending force and spontaneous curvature are disregarded. The coupled problem is formulated in a fully Eulerian framework and the membrane motion is tracked using the level set method. The resulting nonlinear problem is solved by a Newton-Raphson strategy, featuring a quadratic convergence behavior. A monolithic solver is implemented, and we report several numerical experiments aimed at model validation and illustrating the accuracy of the proposed method. We show that stability is maintained for significantly larger time steps with respect to an explicit decoupling method.
Paper Detail
402
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203
10005703
Miniaturized PVC Sensors for Determination of Fe2+, Mn2+ and Zn2+ in Buffalo-Cows’ Cervical Mucus Samples
Abstract:

Three polyvinyl chloride membrane sensors were developed for the electrochemical evaluation of ferrous, manganese and zinc ions. The sensors were used for assaying metal ions in cervical mucus (CM) of Egyptian river buffalo-cows (Bubalus bubalis) as their levels vary dependent on cyclical hormone variation during different phases of estrus cycle. The presented sensors are based on using ionophores, β-cyclodextrin (β-CD), hydroxypropyl β-cyclodextrin (HP-β-CD) and sulfocalix-4-arene (SCAL) for sensors 1, 2 and 3 for Fe2+, Mn2+ and Zn2+, respectively. Dioctyl phthalate (DOP) was used as the plasticizer in a polymeric matrix of polyvinylchloride (PVC). For increasing the selectivity and sensitivity of the sensors, each sensor was enriched with a suitable complexing agent, which enhanced the sensor’s response. For sensor 1, β-CD was mixed with bathophenanthroline; for sensor 2, porphyrin was incorporated with HP-β-CD; while for sensor 3, oxine was the used complexing agent with SCAL. Linear responses of 10-7-10-2 M with cationic slopes of 53.46, 45.01 and 50.96 over pH range 4-8 were obtained using coated graphite sensors for ferrous, manganese and zinc ionic solutions, respectively. The three sensors were validated, according to the IUPAC guidelines. The obtained results by the presented potentiometric procedures were statistically analyzed and compared with those obtained by atomic absorption spectrophotometric method (AAS). No significant differences for either accuracy or precision were observed between the two techniques. Successful application for the determination of the three studied cations in CM, for the purpose to determine the proper time for artificial insemination (AI) was achieved. The results were compared with those obtained upon analyzing the samples by AAS. Proper detection of estrus and correct time of AI was necessary to maximize the production of buffaloes. In this experiment, 30 multi-parous buffalo-cows were in second to third lactation and weighting 415-530 kg, and were synchronized with OVSynch protocol. Samples were taken in three times around ovulation, on day 8 of OVSynch protocol, on day 9 (20 h before AI) and on day 10 (1 h before AI). Beside analysis of trace elements (Fe2+, Mn2+ and Zn2+) in CM using the three sensors, the samples were analyzed for the three cations and also Cu2+ by AAS in the CM samples and blood samples. The results obtained were correlated with hormonal analysis of serum samples and ultrasonography for the purpose of determining of the optimum time of AI. The results showed significant differences and powerful correlation with Zn2+ composition of CM during heat phase and the ovulation time, indicating that the parameter could be used as a tool to decide optimal time of AI in buffalo-cows.

Paper Detail
399
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202
10005502
Optimization of Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cell Parameters Based on Modified Particle Swarm Algorithms
Abstract:
In recent years, increasing usage of electrical energy provides a widespread field for investigating new methods to produce clean electricity with high reliability and cost management. Fuel cells are new clean generations to make electricity and thermal energy together with high performance and no environmental pollution. According to the expansion of fuel cell usage in different industrial networks, the identification and optimization of its parameters is really significant. This paper presents optimization of a proton exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) parameters based on modified particle swarm optimization with real valued mutation (RVM) and clonal algorithms. Mathematical equations of this type of fuel cell are presented as the main model structure in the optimization process. Optimized parameters based on clonal and RVM algorithms are compared with the desired values in the presence and absence of measurement noise. This paper shows that these methods can improve the performance of traditional optimization methods. Simulation results are employed to analyze and compare the performance of these methodologies in order to optimize the proton exchange membrane fuel cell parameters.
Paper Detail
418
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201
10005682
Paper-Based Colorimetric Sensor Utilizing Peroxidase-Mimicking Magnetic Nanoparticles Conjugated with Aptamers
Abstract:

We developed a paper-based colorimetric sensor utilizing magnetic nanoparticles conjugated with aptamers (MNP-Apts) against E. coli O157:H7. The MNP-Apts were applied to a test sample solution containing the target cells, and the solution was simply dropped onto PVDF (polyvinylidene difluoride) membrane. The membrane moves the sample radially to form the sample spots of different compounds as concentric rings, thus the MNP-Apts on the membrane enabled specific recognition of the target cells through a color ring generation by MNP-promoted colorimetric reaction of TMB (3,3',5,5'-tetramethylbenzidine) and H2O2. This method could be applied to rapidly and visually detect various bacterial pathogens in less than 1 h without cell culturing.

Paper Detail
375
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200
10005286
Electrokinetic Remediation of Uranium Contaminated Soil by Ion Exchange Membranes
Abstract:
The contamination of significant quantities of soils and sediments with uranium and other actinide elements as a result of nuclear activity poses many environmental risks. The electrokinetic process is one of the most promising remediation techniques for sludge, sediment, and saturated or unsaturated soils contaminated with heavy metals and radionuclides. However, secondary waste is a major concern for soil contaminated with nuclides. To minimize the generation of secondary wastes, this study used the anion and cation exchange membranes to improve the performance of the experimental apparatus. Remediation experiments of uranium-contaminated soil were performed with different agents. The results show that using acetic acid and EDTA as chelating agents clearly enhances the migration ability of the uranium. The ion exchange membranes (IEMs) used in the experiments not only reduce secondary wastes, but also, keep the soil pH stable.
Paper Detail
560
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199
10005209
Microbiological Analysis, Cytotoxic and Genotoxic Effects from Material Captured in PM2.5 and PM10 Filters Used in the Aburrá Valley Air Quality Monitoring Network (Colombia)
Abstract:
This study aims to evaluate the diversity of microorganisms in filters PM2.5 and PM10; and determine the genotoxic and cytotoxic activity of the complex mixture present in PM2.5 filters used in the Aburrá Valley Air Quality Monitoring Network (Colombia). The research results indicate that particulate matter PM2.5 of different monitoring stations are bacteria; however, this study of detection of bacteria and their phylogenetic relationship is not complete evidence to connect the microorganisms with pathogenic or degrading activities of compounds present in the air. Additionally, it was demonstrated the damage induced by the particulate material in the cell membrane, lysosomal and endosomal membrane and in the mitochondrial metabolism; this damage was independent of the PM2.5 concentrations in almost all the cases.
Paper Detail
1460
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198
10005002
Effects of Duct Geometry, Thickness and Types of Liners on Transmission Loss for Absorptive Silencers
Abstract:
Sound attenuation in absorptive silencers has been analyzed in this paper. The structure of such devices is as follows. When the rigid duct of an expansion chamber has been lined by a packed absorptive material under a perforated membrane, incident sound waves will be dissipated by the absorptive liners. This kind of silencer, usually are applicable for medium to high frequency ranges. Several conditions for different absorptive materials, variety in their thicknesses, and different shapes of the expansion chambers have been studied in this paper. Also, graphs of sound attenuation have been compared between empty expansion chamber and duct of silencer with applying liner. Plane waves have been assumed in inlet and outlet regions of the silencer. Presented results that have been achieved by applying finite element method (FEM), have shown the dependence of the sound attenuation spectrum to flow resistivity and the thicknesses of the absorptive materials, and geometries of the cross section (configuration of the silencer). As flow resistivity and thickness of absorptive materials increase, sound attenuation improves. In this paper, diagrams of the transmission loss (TL) for absorptive silencers in five different cross sections (rectangle, circle, ellipse, square, and rounded rectangle as the main geometry) have been presented. Also, TL graphs for silencers using different absorptive material (glass wool, wood fiber, and kind of spongy materials) as liner with three different thicknesses of 5 mm, 15 mm, and 30 mm for glass wool liner have been exhibited. At first, the effect of substances of the absorptive materials with the specific flow resistivity and densities on the TL spectrum, then the effect of the thicknesses of the glass wool, and at last the efficacy of the shape of the cross section of the silencer have been investigated.
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10004804
Identification of the Antimicrobial Effect of Liquorice Extracts on Gram-Positive Bacteria: Determination of Minimum Inhibitory Concentration and Mechanism of Action Using a luxABCDE Reporter Strain
Abstract:

Natural preservatives have been used as alternatives to traditional chemical preservatives; however, a limited number have been commercially developed and many remain to be investigated as sources of safer and effective antimicrobials. In this study, we have been investigating the antimicrobial activity of an extract of Glycyrrhiza glabra (liquorice) that was provided as a waste material from the production of liquorice flavourings for the food industry, and to investigate if this retained the expected antimicrobial activity so it could be used as a natural preservative. Antibacterial activity of liquorice extract was screened for evidence of growth inhibition against eight species of Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria, including Listeria monocytogenes, Listeria innocua, Staphylococcus aureus, Enterococcus faecalis and Bacillus subtilis. The Gram-negative bacteria tested include Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Escherichia coli and Salmonella typhimurium but none of these were affected by the extract. In contrast, for all of the Gram-positive bacteria tested, growth was inhibited as monitored using optical density. However parallel studies using viable count indicated that the cells were not killed meaning that the extract was bacteriostatic rather than bacteriocidal. The Minimum Inhibitory Concentration [MIC] and Minimum Bactericidal Concentration [MBC] of the extract was also determined and a concentration of 50 µg ml-1 was found to have a strong bacteriostatic effect on Gram-positive bacteria. Microscopic analysis indicated that there were changes in cell shape suggesting the cell wall was affected. In addition, the use of a reporter strain of Listeria transformed with the bioluminescence genes luxABCDE indicated that cell energy levels were reduced when treated with either 12.5 or 50 µg ml-1 of the extract, with the reduction in light output being proportional to the concentration of the extract used. Together these results suggest that the extract is inhibiting the growth of Gram-positive bacteria only by damaging the cell wall and/or membrane.

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617
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10005614
Resveratrol Incorporated Liposomes Prepared from Pegylated Phospholipids and Cholesterol
Abstract:

Liposomes and pegylated liposomes were widely used as drug delivery system in pharmaceutical field since a long time. However, in the former time, polyethylene glycol (PEG) was connected into phospholipid after the liposomes were already prepared. In this paper, we intend to study the possibility of applying phospholipids which already connected with PEG and then they were used to prepare liposomes. The model drug resveratrol was used because it can be applied against different diseases. Cholesterol was applied to stabilize the membrane of liposomes. The thin film technique in a laboratory scale was a preparation method. The liposomes were then characterized by nanoparticle tracking analysis (NTA), photon correlation spectroscopy (PCS) and light microscopic techniques. The stable liposomes can be produced and the particle sizes after filtration were in nanometers. The 2- and 3-chains-PEG-phospholipid (PL) caused in smaller particle size than the 4-chains-PEG-PL. Liposomes from PL 90G and cholesterol were stable during storage at 8 °C of 56 days because the particle sizes measured by PCS were almost not changed. There was almost no leakage of resveratrol from liposomes PL 90G with cholesterol after diffusion test in dialysis tube for 28 days. All liposomes showed the sustained release during measuring time of 270 min. The maximum release amount of 16-20% was detected with liposomes from 2- and 3-chains-PEG-PL. The other liposomes gave max. release amount of resveratrol only of 10%. The release kinetic can be explained by Korsmeyer-Peppas equation. 

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263
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10005680
Cold Plasma Surface Modified Electrospun Microtube Array Membrane for Chitosan Immobilization and Their Properties
Abstract:

Electrospun microtube array membranes (MTAMs) made of PLLA (poly-L-lactic acid) have wide potential applications in tissue engineering. However, their surface hydrophobicity and poor biocompatability have limited their further usage. In this study, the surface of PLLA MTAMs were made hydrophilic by introducing extra functional groups, such as peroxide, via an acetic acid plasma (AAP). UV-graft polymerization of acrylic acid (G-AAc) was then used to produce carboxyl group on MTAMs surface, which bonded covalently with chitosan through EDC / NHS crosslinking agents. To evaluate the effects of the surface modification on PLLA MTAMs, water contact angle (WCA) measurement and cell compatibility tests were carried out. We found that AAP treated electrospun PLLA MTAMs grafted with AAc and, finally, with chitosan immobilized via crosslinking agent, exhibited improved hydrophilic and cell compatibility.

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