Excellence in Research and Innovation for Humanity

International Science Index

Commenced in January 1999 Frequency: Monthly Edition: International Paper Count: 15

Environmental, Chemical, Ecological, Geological and Geophysical Engineering

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  • 15
    Statistical Assessment of Models for Determination of Soil – Water Characteristic Curves of Sand Soils

    Characterization of the engineering behavior of unsaturated soil is dependent on the soil-water characteristic curve (SWCC), a graphical representation of the relationship between water content or degree of saturation and soil suction. A reasonable description of the SWCC is thus important for the accurate prediction of unsaturated soil parameters. The measurement procedures for determining the SWCC, however, are difficult, expensive, and timeconsuming. During the past few decades, researchers have laid a major focus on developing empirical equations for predicting the SWCC, with a large number of empirical models suggested. One of the most crucial questions is how precisely existing equations can represent the SWCC. As different models have different ranges of capability, it is essential to evaluate the precision of the SWCC models used for each particular soil type for better SWCC estimation. It is expected that better estimation of SWCC would be achieved via a thorough statistical analysis of its distribution within a particular soil class. With this in view, a statistical analysis was conducted in order to evaluate the reliability of the SWCC prediction models against laboratory measurement. Optimization techniques were used to obtain the best-fit of the model parameters in four forms of SWCC equation, using laboratory data for relatively coarse-textured (i.e., sandy) soil. The four most prominent SWCCs were evaluated and computed for each sample. The result shows that the Brooks and Corey model is the most consistent in describing the SWCC for sand soil type. The Brooks and Corey model prediction also exhibit compatibility with samples ranging from low to high soil water content in which subjected to the samples that evaluated in this study.

    Maintenance Dredging at Port of Townsville

    The Port of Townsville conducts regular annual maintenance dredging to maintain depths of its harbor basin and approach channels for the navigational safety of the vessels against the natural accumulation of marine sediments. In addition to the regular maintenance dredging, the port undertakes emergency dredging in cases where large quantities of sediments are mobilized and deposited in port waters by cyclone or major flood events. The maintenance dredging material derived from the port may be disposed at sea or on land in accordance with relevant state and commonwealth regulations. For the land disposal, the dredged mud slurry is hydraulically placed into containment ponds and left to undergo sedimentation and self-weight consolidation to form fill material for land reclamation. This paper provides an overview of the maintenance dredging at the Port of Townsville and emphasis on maintenance dredging requirements, sediment quality, bathymetry, dredging methods used, and dredged material disposal options.

    GCM Based Fuzzy Clustering to Identify Homogeneous Climatic Regions of North-East India

    The North-eastern part of India, which receives heavier rainfall than other parts of the subcontinent, is of great concern now-a-days with regard to climate change. High intensity rainfall for short duration and longer dry spell, occurring due to impact of climate change, affects river morphology too. In the present study, an attempt is made to delineate the North-eastern region of India into some homogeneous clusters based on the Fuzzy Clustering concept and to compare the resulting clusters obtained by using conventional methods and nonconventional methods of clustering. The concept of clustering is adapted in view of the fact that, impact of climate change can be studied in a homogeneous region without much variation, which can be helpful in studies related to water resources planning and management. 10 IMD (Indian Meteorological Department) stations, situated in various regions of the North-east, have been selected for making the clusters. The results of the Fuzzy C-Means (FCM) analysis show different clustering patterns for different conditions. From the analysis and comparison it can be concluded that nonconventional method of using GCM data is somehow giving better results than the others. However, further analysis can be done by taking daily data instead of monthly means to reduce the effect of standardization.

    Expert Based System Design for Integrated Waste Management

    Recently, an increasing number of researchers have been focusing on working out realistic solutions to sustainability problems. As sustainability issues gain higher importance for organisations, the management of such decisions becomes critical. Knowledge representation is a fundamental issue of complex knowledge based systems. Many types of sustainability problems would benefit from models based on experts’ knowledge. Cognitive maps have been used for analyzing and aiding decision making. A cognitive map can be made of almost any system or problem. A fuzzy cognitive map (FCM) can successfully represent knowledge and human experience, introducing concepts to represent the essential elements and the cause and effect relationships among the concepts to model the behaviour of any system. Integrated waste management systems (IWMS) are complex systems that can be decomposed to non-related and related subsystems and elements, where many factors have to be taken into consideration that may be complementary, contradictory, and competitive; these factors influence each other and determine the overall decision process of the system. The goal of the present paper is to construct an efficient IWMS which considers various factors. The authors’ intention is to propose an expert based system design approach for implementing expert decision support in the area of IWMSs and introduces an appropriate methodology for the development and analysis of group FCM. A framework for such a methodology consisting of the development and application phases is presented.

    Trends in Extreme Rainfall Events in Tasmania, Australia

    Climate change will affect various aspects of hydrological cycle such as rainfall. A change in rainfall will affect flood magnitude and frequency in future which will affect the design and operation of hydraulic structures. In this paper, trends in subhourly, sub-daily, and daily extreme rainfall events from 18 rainfall stations located in Tasmania, Australia are examined. Two nonparametric tests (Mann-Kendall and Spearman’s Rho) are applied to detect trends at 10%, 5%, and 1% significance levels. Sub-hourly (6, 12, 18, and 30 minutes) annual maximum rainfall events have been found to experience statistically significant upward trends at 10% level of significance. However, sub-daily durations (1 hour, 3 and 12 hours) exhibit decreasing trends and no trends exists for longer duration rainfall events (e.g. 24 and 72 hours). Some of the durations (e.g. 6 minutes and 6 hours) show similar results (with upward trends) for both the tests. For 12, 18, 60 minutes and 3 hours durations both the tests show similar downward trends. This finding has important implication for Tasmania in the design of urban infrastructure where shorter duration rainfall events are more relevant for smaller urban catchments such as parking lots, roof catchments and smaller sub-divisions.

    Earthquake Classification in Molluca Collision Zone Using Conventional Statistical Methods

    Molluca Collision Zone is located at the junction of the Eurasian, Australian, Pacific and the Philippines plates. Between the Sangihe arc, west of the collision zone, and to the east of Halmahera arc is active collision and convex toward the Molluca Sea. This research will analyze the behavior of earthquake occurrence in Molluca Collision Zone related to the distributions of an earthquake in each partition regions, determining the type of distribution of a occurrence earthquake of partition regions, and the mean occurence of earthquakes each partition regions, and the correlation between the partitions region. We calculate number of earthquakes using partition method and its behavioral using conventional statistical methods. In this research, we used data of shallow earthquakes type and its magnitudes ≥4 SR (period 1964-2013). From the results, we can classify partitioned regions based on the correlation into two classes: strong and very strong. This classification can be used for early warning system in disaster management.

    Trend Analysis for Extreme Rainfall Events in New South Wales, Australia

    Climate change will affect the hydrological cycle in many different ways such as increase in evaporation and rainfalls. There have been growing interests among researchers to identify the nature of trends in historical rainfall data in many different parts of the world. This paper examines the trends in annual maximum rainfall data from 30 stations in New South Wales, Australia by using two non-parametric tests, Mann-Kendall (MK) and Spearman’s Rho (SR). Rainfall data were analyzed for fifteen different durations ranging from 6 min to 3 days. It is found that the sub-hourly durations (6, 12, 18, 24, 30 and 48 minutes) show statistically significant positive (upward) trends whereas longer duration (subdaily and daily) events generally show a statistically significant negative (downward) trend. It is also found that the MK test and SR test provide notably different results for some rainfall event durations considered in this study. Since shorter duration sub-hourly rainfall events show positive trends at many stations, the design rainfall data based on stationary frequency analysis for these durations need to be adjusted to account for the impact of climate change. These shorter durations are more relevant to many urban development projects based on smaller catchments having a much shorter response time.

    Identification of Outliers in Flood Frequency Analysis: Comparison of Original and Multiple Grubbs-Beck Test

    At-site flood frequency analysis is used to estimate flood quantiles when at-site record length is reasonably long. In Australia, FLIKE software has been introduced for at-site flood frequency analysis. The advantage of FLIKE is that, for a given application, the user can compare a number of most commonly adopted probability distributions and parameter estimation methods relatively quickly using a windows interface. The new version of FLIKE has been incorporated with the multiple Grubbs and Beck test which can identify multiple numbers of potentially influential low flows. This paper presents a case study considering six catchments in eastern Australia which compares two outlier identification tests (original Grubbs and Beck test and multiple Grubbs and Beck test) and two commonly applied probability distributions (Generalized Extreme Value (GEV) and Log Pearson type 3 (LP3)) using FLIKE software. It has been found that the multiple Grubbs and Beck test when used with LP3 distribution provides more accurate flood quantile estimates than when LP3 distribution is used with the original Grubbs and Beck test. Between these two methods, the differences in flood quantile estimates have been found to be up to 61% for the six study catchments. It has also been found that GEV distribution (with L moments) and LP3 distribution with the multiple Grubbs and Beck test provide quite similar results in most of the cases; however, a difference up to 38% has been noted for flood quantiles for annual exceedance probability (AEP) of 1 in 100 for one catchment. This finding needs to be confirmed with a greater number of stations across other Australian states.

    Laboratory Testing Regime for Quantifying Soil Collapsibility

    Collapsible soils go through radical rearrangement of their particles when triggered by water, stress or/and vibration, causing loss of volume. This loss of volume in soil as seen in foundation failures has caused millions of dollars’ worth of damages to public facilities and infrastructure and so has an adverse effect on the society and people. Despite these consequences and the several studies that are available, more research is still required in the study of soil collapsibility. Discerning the pedogenesis (formation) of soils and investigating the combined effects of the different geological soil properties is key to elucidating and quantifying soils collapsibility. This study presents a novel laboratory testing regime that would be undertaken on soil samples where the effects of soil type, compactive variables (moisture content, density, void ratio, degree of saturation) and loading are analyzed. It is anticipated that results obtained would be useful in mapping the trend of the combined effect thus the basis for evaluating soil collapsibility or collapse potentials encountered in construction with volume loss problems attributed to collapse.

    Interannual Variations in Snowfall and Continuous Snow Cover Duration in Pelso, Central Finland, Linked to Teleconnection Patterns, 1944-2010

    Climate warming would increase rainfall by shifting precipitation falling form from snow to rain, and would accelerate snow cover disappearing by increasing snowpack. Using temperature and precipitation data in the temperature-index snowmelt model, we evaluated variability of snowfall and continuous snow cover duration (CSCD) during 1944-2010 over Pelso, central Finland. Mann- Kendall non-parametric test determined that annual precipitation increased by 2.69 (mm/year, p<0.05) during the study period, but no clear trend in annual temperature. Both annual rainfall and snowfall increased by 1.67 and 0.78 (mm/year, p<0.05), respectively. CSCD was generally about 205 days from 14 October to 6 May. No clear trend was found in CSCD over Pelso. Spearman’s rank correlation showed most significant relationships of annual snowfall with the East Atlantic (EA) pattern, and CSCD with the East Atlantic/West Russia (EA/WR) pattern. Increased precipitation with no warming temperature caused the rainfall and snowfall to increase, while no effects on CSCD.

    Sustainability and Promotion of Inland Waterway Transportation Projects in Colombia: Case of the Magdalena River

    Inland Waterway Transportation (IWT) is playing an important role in national transport systems, water transportation is considered to be safe, energy efficient and environmentally friendly mode of transport, all benefits of IWT cause national awareness increase, for instance the Colombian government is planning to restore the navigability of the most important river of the country, the Magdalena’s River navigability, embrace waterway transportation in Colombia could strength competitiveness while reduce most of the transport externalities. However, the current situation of the Magdalena is deplorable, the most important river of Colombia has been abandoned for decades and the solution is beyond of a single administrative entity. This paper analyzes the outcomes of the Navigation And Inland Waterway Action and Development in Europe program (NAIADES) as a prospective to develop a similar program in Colombia with similar objectives and guidelines, considering sustainability, guarantying the long-term future results and adaptability of the program. Identifying stakeholders and policy experts, a set of individual interviews were carried out; findings support the idea of lack of integration within governmental institutions and lack of importance in marketing promotion as possible drawbacks on the implementation of IWT projects.

    Application of RS and GIS Technique for Identifying Groundwater Potential Zone in Gomukhi Nadhi Sub Basin, South India

    India holds 17.5% of the world’s population but has only 2% of the total geographical area of the world where 27.35% of the area is categorized as wasteland due to lack of or less groundwater. So there is a demand for excessive groundwater for agricultural and non agricultural activities to balance its growth rate. With this in mind, an attempt is made to find the groundwater potential zone in Gomukhi Nadhi sub basin of Vellar River basin, TamilNadu, India covering an area of 1146.6 Sq.Km consists of 9 blocks from Peddanaickanpalayam to Virudhachalam in the sub basin. The thematic maps such as Geology, Geomorphology, Lineament, Landuse and Landcover and Drainage are prepared for the study area using IRS P6 data. The collateral data includes rainfall, water level, soil map are collected for analysis and inference. The digital elevation model (DEM) is generated using Shuttle Radar Topographic Mission (SRTM) and the slope of the study area is obtained. ArcGIS 10.1 acts as a powerful spatial analysis tool to find out the ground water potential zones in the study area by means of weighted overlay analysis. Each individual parameter of the thematic maps are ranked and weighted in accordance with their influence to increase the water level in the ground. The potential zones in the study area are classified viz., Very Good, Good, Moderate, Poor with its aerial extent of 15.67, 381.06, 575.38, 174.49 Sq.Km respectively.

    Intelligent Earthquake Prediction System Based On Neural Network

    Predicting earthquakes is an important issue in the study of geography. Accurate prediction of earthquakes can help people to take effective measures to minimize the loss of personal and economic damage, such as large casualties, destruction of buildings and broken of traffic, occurred within a few seconds. United States Geological Survey (USGS) science organization provides reliable scientific information about Earthquake Existed throughout history & the Preliminary database from the National Center Earthquake Information (NEIC) show some useful factors to predict an earthquake in a seismic area like Aleutian Arc in the U.S. state of Alaska. The main advantage of this prediction method that it does not require any assumption, it makes prediction according to the future evolution of the object's time series. The article compares between simulation data result from trained BP and RBF neural network versus actual output result from the system calculations. Therefore, this article focuses on analysis of data relating to real earthquakes. Evaluation results show better accuracy and higher speed by using radial basis functions (RBF) neural network.

    The Effect of Raindrop Kinetic Energy on Soil Erodibility

    Soil erosion is a very complex phenomenon, resulting from detachment and transport of soil particles by erosion agents. The kinetic energy of raindrop is the energy available for detachment and transport by splashing rain. The soil erodibility is defined as the ability of soil to resist to erosion. For this purpose, an experimental study was conducted in the laboratory using rainfall simulator to study the effect of the kinetic energy of rain (Ec) on the soil erodibility (K). The soil used was a sandy agricultural soil of 62.08% coarse sand, 19.14% fine sand, 6.39% fine silt, 5.18% coarse silt and 7.21% clay. The obtained results show that the kinetic energy of raindrops evolves as a power law with soil erodibility.

    The Design and Construction of the PV-Wind Autonomous System for Greenhouse Plantations in Central Thailand

    The objective of this research is to design and construct the PV-Wind hybrid autonomous system for the greenhouse plantation, and analyze the technical performance of the PV-Wind energy system. This design depends on the water consumption in the greenhouse by using 24 of the fogging mist each with the capability of 24 liter/min. The operating time is 4 times per day, each round for 15 min. The fogging system is being driven by water pump with AC motor rating 0.5 hp. The load energy consumed is around 1.125 kWh/d. The designing results of the PV-Wind hybrid energy system is that sufficient energy could be generated by this system. The results of this study can be applied as a technical data reference for other areas in the central part of Thailand.