Excellence in Research and Innovation for Humanity

International Science Index

Commenced in January 1999 Frequency: Monthly Edition: International Paper Count: 19

Environmental, Chemical, Ecological, Geological and Geophysical Engineering

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  • 19
    Modeling Decentralized Source-Separation Systems for Urban Waste Management

    Decentralized eco-sanitation system is a promising and sustainable mode comparing to the century-old centralized conventional sanitation system. The decentralized concept relies on an environmentally and economically sound management of water, nutrient and energy fluxes. Source-separation systems for urban waste management collect different solid waste and wastewater streams separately to facilitate the recovery of valuable resources from wastewater (energy, nutrients). A resource recovery centre constituted for 20,000 people will act as the functional unit for the treatment of urban waste of a high-density population community, like Singapore. The decentralized system includes urine treatment, faeces and food waste co-digestion, and horticultural waste and organic fraction of municipal solid waste treatment in composting plants. A design model is developed to estimate the input and output in terms of materials and energy. The inputs of urine (yellow water, YW) and faeces (brown water, BW) are calculated by considering the daily mean production of urine and faeces by humans and the water consumption of no-mix vacuum toilet (0.2 and 1 L flushing water for urine and faeces, respectively). The food waste (FW) production is estimated to be 150 g wet weight/person/day. The YW is collected and discharged by gravity into tank. It was found that two days are required for urine hydrolysis and struvite precipitation. The maximum nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) recovery are 150-266 kg/day and 20-70 kg/day, respectively. In contrast, BW and FW are mixed for co-digestion in a thermophilic acidification tank and later a decentralized/centralized methanogenic reactor is used for biogas production. It is determined that 6.16-15.67 m3/h methane is produced which is equivalent to 0.07-0.19 kWh/ca/day. The digestion residues are treated with horticultural waste and organic fraction of municipal waste in co-composting plants.

    Biodiesel from Coconut Oil: A Renewable Alternative Fuel for Diesel Engine
    With the growth of modern civilization and industrialization in worldwide, the demand for energy is increasing day by day. Majority of the world-s energy needs are met through fossil fuels and natural gas. As a result the amount of fossil fuels is on diminishing from year to year. Since the fossil fuel is nonrenewable, so fuel price is gouging as a consequence of spiraling demand and diminishing supply. At present the power generation of our country is mainly depends on imported fossil fuels. To reduce the dependency on imported fuel, the use of renewable sources has become more popular. In Bangladesh coconut is widely growing tree. Especially in the southern part of the country a large area will be found where coconut tree is considered as natural asset. So, our endeavor was to use the coconut oil as a renewable and alternative fuel. This article shows the prospect of coconut oil as a renewable and alternative fuel of diesel fuel. Since diesel engine has a versatile uses including small electricity generation, an experimental set up is then made to study the performance of a small diesel engine using different blends of bio diesel converted from coconut oil. It is found that bio diesel has slightly different properties than diesel. With biodiesel the engine is capable of running without difficulty. Different blends of bio diesel (i.e. B80, B60, and B 50 etc.) have been used to avoid complicated modification of the engine or the fuel supply system. Finally, a comparison of engine performance for different blends of biodiesel has been carried out to determine the optimum blend for different operating conditions.
    Health Risk Assessment of Heavy Metals Adsorbed in Particulates

    The progress of concentrations of particular heavy metals was assessed in chosen localities in region Moravia, the Czech Republic, from 2007 to 2009. Particular metals were observed in localities with various types and characterization of zone. Pb, Ni, As and Cd were emphasized as a result of their toxicity and potential adverse health effect to the exposed population. The progress of metal concentrations and their health effects in the most polluted localities were examined. According to the results, the air pollution limit values were not exceeded. Based on the health risk assessment, the probability of developing tumorous diseases is acceptable, except for the increased probability of cancer risk from long-term exposure to As.

    An Energy Consumption Study for a Malaysian University
    The increase in energy demand has raised concerns over adverse impacts on the environment from energy generation. It is important to understand the status of energy consumption for institutions such as Curtin Sarawak to ensure the sustainability of energy usage, and also to reduce its costs. In this study, a preliminary audit framework was developed and was conducted around the Malaysian campus to obtain information such as the number and specifications of electrical appliances, built-up area and ambient temperature to understand the relationship of these factors with energy consumption. It was found that the number and types of electrical appliances, population and activities in the campus impacted the energy consumption of Curtin Sarawak directly. However, the built-up area and ambient temperature showed no clear correlation with energy consumption. An investigation of the diurnal and seasonal energy consumption of the campus was also carried out. From the data, recommendations were made to improve the energy efficiency of the campus.
    Health Effects of Trihalomethanes as Chlorinated Disinfection by Products: A Review Article
    Trihalomethanes (THMs) were among the first disinfection byproducts to be discovered in chlorinated water. The substances form during a reaction between chlorine and organic matter in the water. Trihalomethanes are suspected to have negative effects on birth such as, low birth weight, intrauterine growth retardation in term births, as well as gestational age and preterm delivery. There are also some evidences showing these by-products to be mutagenic and carcinogenic, the greatest amount of evidence being related to the bladder cancer. However, there exist inconsistencies regarding such effects of THMs as different studies have provided different results in this regard. The aim of the present study is to provide a review of the related researches about the above mentioned health effects of THMs.
    Determination of Volatile Organic Compounds in Human Breath by Optical Fiber Sensing
    This work proposes an optical fiber system (OF) for sensing various volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in human breath for the diagnosis of some metabolic disorders as a non-invasive methodology. The analyzed VOCs are alkanes (i.e., ethane, pentane, heptane, octane, and decane), and aromatic compounds (i.e., benzene, toluene, and styrene). The OF displays high analytical performance since it provides near real-time responses, rapid analysis, and low instrumentation costs, as well as it exhibits useful linear range and detection limits; the developed OF sensor is also comparable to a reference methodology (gas chromatography-mass spectrometry) for the eight tested VOCs.
    Reducing Greenhouse Gasses Emissions by Recyclable Material Bank Project in Universities of Thailand

    This research studied recycled wastes by Recyclable Material Bank project of 17 universities of Thailand for evaluation of reducing greenhouse gasses emission compared with landfilling activity during January 2011 to December 2011. The results showed that the projects collected total amount of recyclable wastes about 1,626.917 metric ton. The office paper has the largest amount among these recycled wastes (55.61 % of total recycled wastes). Groups of recycled waste can be prioritized from high to low according to their amount as paper, plastic, glass, mixed recyclables and metal, respectively. The project reduced greenhouse gasses emission equivalent to about 5,263.481 metric ton of carbon dioxide. The most significant recycled waste that affects the reduction of greenhouse gasses emission is office paper which is 73.45% of total reduced greenhouse gasses emission. According to amount of reduced greenhouse gasses emission, groups of recycled waste can be prioritized from high to low significances as paper, plastic, metal, mixed recyclables and glass, respectively.

    Anaerobic Treatment of Petroleum Refinery Wastewater
    Anaerobic treatment has many advantages over other biological method particularly when used to treat complex wastewater such as petroleum refinery wastewater. In this study two Up-flow Anaerobic Sludge Blanket (UASB) reactors were operated in parallel to treat six volumetric organic loads (0.58, 1.21, 0.89, 2.34, 1.47 and 4.14 kg COD/m3·d) to evaluate the chemical oxygen demand (COD) removal efficiency. The reactors were continuously adapting to the changing of operation condition with increase in the removal efficiency or slight decrease until the last load which was more than two times the load, at which the reactor stressed and the removal efficiency decreased to 75% with effluent concentration of 1746 mg COD/L. Other parameters were also monitored such as pH, alkalinity, volatile fatty acid and gas production rate. The UASB reactor was suitable to treat petroleum refinery wastewater and the highest COD removal rate was 83% at 1215 kg/m3·d with COD concentration about 356 mg/L in the effluent.
    Effect of Domestic Treated Wastewater use on Three Varieties of Quinoa (Chenopodium quinoa) under Semi Arid Conditions
    The purpose of this work was to study the effect of the irrigation using waste water with various electric conductivities (T(0,92ds/m), EC3 (3ds/m) and EC6 (6ds/m) on three varieties of quinoa cultivated in a field south of Morocco. The follow up of the evolution of the chemical and agronomic parameters throughout the culture made it possible to determine the responses to the saline stress in arid conditions. Results showed that the salinity caused the depression of plant-s height, and reduced the fresh and dry weight in the different parts of the three varieties plants. The increase of the irrigation water EC didn-t affect the yield for the varieties. Thus, quinoa resisted to salinity and proved a behavior of a facultative halophyte crop. In fact, the cultivation of this using treated wastewater is feasible especially in arid areas for a sustainable use of water resources.
    An Evaluation of Land Use Control in Hokkaido, Japan
    This study focuses on an evaluation of Hokkaido which is the northernmost and largest prefecture by surface area in Japan and particularly on two points: the rivalry between all kinds of land use such as urban land and agricultural and forestry land in various cities and their surrounding areas and the possibilities for forestry biomass in areas other than those mentioned above and grasps which areas require examination of the nature of land use control and guidance through conducting land use analysis at the district level using GIS (Geographic Information Systems). The results of analysis in this study demonstrated that it is essential to divide the whole of Hokkaido into two areas: those within delineated city planning areas and those outside of delineated city planning areas and to conduct an evaluation of each land use control. In delineated urban areas, particularly urban areas, it is essential to re-examine land use from the point of view of compact cities or smart cities along with conducting an evaluation of land use control that focuses on issues of rivalry between all kinds of land use such as urban land and agricultural and forestry land. In areas outside of delineated urban areas, it is desirable to aim to build a specific community recycling range based on forest biomass utilization by conducting an evaluation of land use control concerning the possibilities for forest biomass focusing particularly on forests within and outside of city planning areas.
    Visualization of Sediment Thickness Variation for Sea Bed Logging using Spline Interpolation
    This paper discusses on the use of Spline Interpolation and Mean Square Error (MSE) as tools to process data acquired from the developed simulator that shall replicate sea bed logging environment. Sea bed logging (SBL) is a new technique that uses marine controlled source electromagnetic (CSEM) sounding technique and is proven to be very successful in detecting and characterizing hydrocarbon reservoirs in deep water area by using resistivity contrasts. It uses very low frequency of 0.1Hz to 10 Hz to obtain greater wavelength. In this work the in house built simulator was used and was provided with predefined parameters and the transmitted frequency was varied for sediment thickness of 1000m to 4000m for environment with and without hydrocarbon. From series of simulations, synthetics data were generated. These data were interpolated using Spline interpolation technique (degree of three) and mean square error (MSE) were calculated between original data and interpolated data. Comparisons were made by studying the trends and relationship between frequency and sediment thickness based on the MSE calculated. It was found that the MSE was on increasing trends in the set up that has the presence of hydrocarbon in the setting than the one without. The MSE was also on decreasing trends as sediment thickness was increased and with higher transmitted frequency.
    Gauteng-s Waste Outlook: A Reflection

    Gauteng, as the province with the greatest industrial and population density, the economic hub of South Africa also generates the greatest amount of waste, both general and hazardous. Therefore the province has a significant need to develop and apply appropriate integrated waste management policies that ensure that waste is recognised as a serious problem and is managed in an effective integrated manner to preserve both the present and future human health and environment. This paper reflects on Gauteng-s waste outlook in particular the province-s General Waste Minimisation Plan and its Integrated Waste Management Policy. The paper also looks at general waste generation, recyclable waste streams as well as recycling and separation at source initiatives in the province. Both the quantity and nature of solid waste differs considerably across the socio-economic spectrum. People in informal settlements generate an average of 0.16 kg per person per day whereas 2 kg per day is not unusual in affluent areas. For example the amount of waste generated in Johannesburg is approximately 1.2 kg per person per day.

    Incidence of Trihalogenmethanes in Drinking Water

    Trihalogenmethanes are the most significant byproducts of the reaction of disinfection agent with organic precursors naturally present in ground and surface waters.Their incidence negatively affects the quality of drinking water in relation to their nephrotoxic, hepatotoxic and genotoxic effects on human health. Taking into consideration the considerable volatility of monitored contaminants it could be assumed that their incidence in drinking water would depend on the distance of sampling from the area of disinfection. Based on the concentration of trihalogenmethanes determined with the help of gas chromatography with mass detector and the analysis of variance (ANOVA) such dependence has been proved as statistically significant. The acquired outcomes will be used for assessing the non-carcinogenic and genotoxic risks to consumers.

    Generation of Artificial Earthquake Accelerogram Compatible with Spectrum using the Wavelet Packet Transform and Nero-Fuzzy Networks

    The principal purpose of this article is to present a new method based on Adaptive Neural Network Fuzzy Inference System (ANFIS) to generate additional artificial earthquake accelerograms from presented data, which are compatible with specified response spectra. The proposed method uses the learning abilities of ANFIS to develop the knowledge of the inverse mapping from response spectrum to earthquake records. In addition, wavelet packet transform is used to decompose specified earthquake records and then ANFISs are trained to relate the response spectrum of records to their wavelet packet coefficients. Finally, an interpretive example is presented which uses an ensemble of recorded accelerograms to demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed method.

    Research on Regional Energy Saving Potential Based on Nonparametric Radial Adjustment and Slack Adjustment
    Taking the provincial capital, labor and energy as inputs, regional GDP as output from 1995 to 2007, the paper quantifies the vertical and lateral energy saving potential by introducing the radial adjustment and slack adjustment of DEA. The results show that by the vertical, the achievement of energy saving in 2007 is better than their respective historical performances. By horizontal, in 2007 it can be found that Tianjin, Liaoning, Shanghai and Yunnan do better in energy saving than other provinces. In national wide, the higher of energy efficiency, the larger of per capita GDP and the proportion of the tertiary industry in the national economy, the more open to the outside, the lower the energy saving potential demonstrates, while the energy endowment has negative effect on energy saving potential.
    Comparison of Stochastic Point Process Models of Rainfall in Singapore

    Extensive rainfall disaggregation approaches have been developed and applied in climate change impact studies such as flood risk assessment and urban storm water management.In this study, five rainfall models that were capable ofdisaggregating daily rainfall data into hourly one were investigated for the rainfall record in theChangi Airport, Singapore. The objectives of this study were (i) to study the temporal characteristics of hourly rainfall in Singapore, and (ii) to evaluate the performance of variousdisaggregation models. The used models included: (i) Rectangular pulse Poisson model (RPPM), (ii) Bartlett-Lewis Rectangular pulse model (BLRPM), (iii) Bartlett-Lewis model with 2 cell types (BL2C), (iv) Bartlett-Lewis Rectangular with cell depth distribution dependent on duration (BLRD), and (v) Neyman-Scott Rectangular pulse model (NSRPM). All of these models werefitted using hourly rainfall data ranging from 1980 to 2005 (which was obtained from Changimeteorological station).The study results indicated that the weight scheme of inversely proportional variance could deliver more accurateoutputs for fitting rainfall patterns in tropical areas, and BLRPM performedrelatively better than other disaggregation models.

    A Study of Water Consumption in Two Malaysian Resorts
    In the effort to reduce water consumption for resorts, more water conservation practices need to be implemented. Hence water audits need to be performed to obtain a baseline of water consumption, before planning water conservation practices. In this study, a water audit framework specifically for resorts was created, and the audit was performed on two resorts: Resort A in Langkawi, Malaysia; and Resort B in Miri, Malaysia. From the audit, the total daily water consumption for Resorts A and B were estimated to be 180m3 and 330 m3 respectively, while the actual water consumption (based on water meter readings) were 175 m3 and 325 m3. This suggests that the audit framework is reasonably accurate and may be used to account for most of the water consumption sources in a resort. The daily water consumption per guest is about 500 litres. The water consumption of both resorts is poorly rated compared with established benchmarks. Water conservation measures were suggested for both resorts.
    Waste Management, Strategies and Situation in South Africa: An Overview

    This paper highlights some interesting facts on South African-s waste situation and management strategies, in particular the Integrated Waste Management. South Africa supports a waste hierarchy by promoting cleaner production, waste minimisation, reuse, recycling and waste treatment with disposal and remediation as the last preferred options in waste management. The drivers for waste management techniques are identified as increased demand for waste service provision; increased demand for waste minimisation; recycling and recovery; land use, physical and environmental limitations; and socio-economic and demographic factors. The South African government recognizes the importance of scientific research as outlined on the white paper on Integrated Pollution and Waste Management (IP and WM) (DEAT, 2000).

    Management and Control of Industrial Effluents Discharged to Public Sewers: A Case Study
    An overview of the important aspects of managing and controlling industrial effluent discharges to public sewers namely sampling, characterization, quantification and legislative controls has been presented. The findings have been validated by means of a case study covering three industrial sectors namely, tanning, textile finishing and food processing industries. Industrial effluents discharges were found to be best monitored by systematic and automatic sampling and quantified using water meter readings corrected for evaporative and consumptive losses. Based on the treatment processes employed in the public owned treatment works and the chemical oxygen demand and biochemical oxygen demand levels obtained, the effluent from all the three industrial sectors studied were found to lie in the toxic zone. Thus, physico-chemical treatment of these effluents is required to bring them into the biodegradable zone. KL values (quoted to base e) were greater than 0.50 day-1 compared to 0.39 day-1 for typical municipality wastewater.