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Abstract

Studies on the adsorption of Pb(II) on plantain peels biochar (PPB) was conducted. The carbonized and activated, biochar was characterized using Braunauer-Emmett-Teller (BET) surface area and x-ray diffraction crystallography (XRD). BET analysis of the PPB indicated that the pore size (cc/g) and pore surface area (m2/g) was 8.79 and 16.69 respectively. Result of the XRD evaluated through Debye-Scherrer equation, showed a nanostructure with crystallite size of 14.56 nm. Effects of initial metal ion concentration, pH, and contact time were studied in a batch reaction process. Results showed that the adsorption of lead from aqueous solution increased with an increase in pH and initial concentration. Equilibrium modeling studies suggested that the data fitted mainly to the Langmuir isotherm. Adsorption kinetic data tested using various kinetic models fitted the Weber and Morris intraparticle diffusion model implicating pore diffusion as the main rate limiting step. The sorption studies indicated the potential of plantain peel biochar as an effective, efficient and low cost adsorbent for remediating lead (II) ions contaminated environment.

Abstract

Momordica cochinchinensis, or Gac fruit belongs to Cucurbitaceae family. Although this species is considered to be native in Southeast Asia especially in Vietnam, Thailand and Laos, it is still contemplated as a rare and new fruit species in Malaysia. Availability of this species is very limited in Malaysia hence, the raw material for researches is also in short supply. Currently, Gac fruit is utilized as traditional food, health supplements, food colouring and juices. Gac fruit was discovered to have high value pharmaceutically and economically as it had been recognized as a rich source of bioactive compounds. On that account, this study aimed to generate preliminary data on the morphological characterisation and phytochemical composition which focused on β-carotene and lycopene content of Gac fruit aril. This data could be useful for further researches particularly on breeding improvement of Gac fruit. The morphological characterisation was mainly based on both vegetative and reproductive parts of the plant. Both β-carotene and lycopene content of aril was analysed and estimated using UV-Vis Spectroscopy technique. The aril was extracted using mixed solvent of n-hexane 95%, ethanol 99.9% and acetone 99% with ratio of 2:1:1 v/v/v. Furthermore, morphological data of root, stem, leaf, flower, fruit and seeds were also successfully recorded. Besides that, the β-carotene and lycopene content obtained were 0.117 ± 0.011 mg/g FW and 0.021 ± 0.002 mg/g FW, respectively. Discrepancy in the results might be due to numerous factors like collection sites, level of maturity at harvest, storage and processing conditions, analysis techniques and type of solvent extractors used that might have affected the quality and contents of the carotenoid. Several suggestions for extension of this study had been propounded so that the benefits of this species could be exploited in the best possible ways.

Abstract

This research conducted with the fully fresh, ripe and sound tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.) was collected then washed, peeled, seeds removed and transferred to the juice extractor. Sugar, preservatives were added to the extracted filtrated juice. Then the juice was heated, cooled and bottled for preservation. Tomato juice was prepared with three different treatments. Among the three treatments T1, T2 and T3 sample were prepared with no preservative, Na-benzoate preservative and potassium meta-bisulphite (KMS) preservative respectively. The organoleptic observation of this tomato juice was studied for 60 days storage period. Chemical analysis and sensory tests were carried out during the 30 days at an interval of 15 days to assess the effect of chemical additives on the shelf life of tomato juice. Negligible Change in chemical constituents except vitamin C was observed in the prepared juice throughout the 30 days storage period. Color was gradually faded and slightly off flavor develops at the end of the storage periods. The treatment T2 secured highest score for color, flavor, taste and overall acceptability and ranked as “Like very much” by a taste testing panel. Tomato juice prepared with no preservative (T1) spoiled after 45 days storage and juice prepared with KMS preservative (T3) spoiled after 60 days storage. Total number of viable bacteria was highest in tomato juice treated with no preservative (T1) and KMS preservative (T3). Tomato juice with Na-benzoate preservative (T2) contained least viable bacteria which was better than T1 and T3 sample. Considering all the parameters, Na-benzoate tends to be better additives than potassium meta-bisulphite (KMS) for preservation of tomato juice.

Abstract

An experiment was carried out to study the effect of post-harvest dipping and various packaging materials on quality traits of mandarin at the laboratory of Project Implementation Unit (Citrus zone) Udayapur, Katari from January to February 2019. The parameters observed were physiological loss in weight, juice content, titrable acidity, total soluble solids, TSS/TA ratio and shelf life. The packaging materials include individual newspaper wrapping, perforated polyethene and corrugated box. Gibberellic acid with a concentration of 100 ppm was used as a dipping material. The experiment was laid out in Completely Randomized Design (CRD) with 8 treatment replicated 3 times. The result showed that among eight treatments combination, fruits treated with GA3 in combination with perforated polyethene recorded minimum physiological loss in weight (1.99%) and control (19.08%). High retention of juice content (40.30%), total soluble solids(12.83 brix) and titrable acidity (0.60%) was recorded in fruits treated with GA3 in combination with perforated polyethene in 24 days of storage. Fruits treated with GA3 in combination with perforated polyethene attained shelf life of 48 days followed by perforated polyethene with a shelf life of 44 days. Finding of the experiment may prove to be helpful in rural area to store mandarin with minimum loss as markets are far from the village.

Abstract

Hormonal changes in humans and animals can be attributed to endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs). Studies have found that excessive exposure to natural and artificial environmental chemicals and toxins can have adverse effects on the endocrine system and reproductive health. The endocrine system creates and releases hormones that regulate the development of organs and how they function. Any disruption to hormones affects the development and functioning of the reproductive system, the brain and the neurological system. Research and reports on the subject have been published by international experts and organizations including the World Health Organization (WHO), United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), International Labour Organization (ILO) and Endocrine Society. To fully comprehend the effect of EDCs on humans and wildlife, it is essential to understand epigenetics and its transgenerational effects on hormone development. Here, we extensively explore and review the research on the sources of EDCs, their effects and why exposure to EDCs is of concern, and treatments for EDC exposure.

Abstract

Single cell supercapacitors with electrodes of varying amounts of graphene and carbon black, formed via the electrospinning process with a carbon-based Polyacrylonitrile (PAN), were tested in 1M H2SO4. From the tested samples, the overall data indicates no correlation between impedance and capacitance energy values. However, the breakdown of the various samples showed mixed results of; good correlations between lower impedance resulting in higher and lower capacitance; while other samples showed higher impedance correlating to both higher and lower capacitance. No correlation was observed between the Impedance value and the thickness of the samples. Furthermore, carbon mole content was not a major factor in determining impedance; therefore, structure is not a major contributor to impedance. Whereas, carbon mole content is a major contributor to capacitance energy; Hence, impedance provides an alternative control point to increasing energy (2-10X times), that can be retrofitted to existing systems, or to increase the energy storage beyond current levels by adjusting/controlling impedance in new designs. The data is indicating impedance is not constant and is varying. The mechanism of varying impedance is unclear and requires further research. However, it is thought to mimic the energy level and stability of matter (atoms). Therefore, impedance varies or oscillates accordingly to achieve an impedance level stability, and hence the term “Orbital Impedance Stability”. Thoughts into Impedance being an Energy Field, to be provided in next publication (In-sha’-ALLAH). This research is concluding that our conventional understanding of impedance is limited in scope. New approaches and further research is needed to better understand impedance behavior. A better understanding of impedance is essential to a breakthrough in energy storage devices from capacitors and batteries, to electric generation and distribution of energy, to magnetic levitation, medical drugs and other energy improvements.

Abstract

This investigation deals with the chemical composition and microstructural analysis of the iron object, a spear excavated from Sanur, Tamil Nadu- a megalithic site dated 300 B.C. to 50 A.D. Phase analysis and microstructural examination were carried using XRD, optical and variable pressure scanning electron microscope (VP-SEM). Optical micrograph shows the equiaxed grain structure along with the Newman bands. Formation of Newman bands suggests that the original artifact was forged at high temperature followed by cooling, although not so rapid to produce the marked hardening. The absence of carbides at the grain boundary, within the grains and lower value of micro-hardness indicates that the iron spear was not subjected to the carburizing treatment. Results of corrosion characterization revealed that deterioration of excavated iron artifact is associated with the presence of chlorine in corrosion products. However, compact nature of the outer rust (goethite) was helpful in protecting the object. The formation of goethite [ ∝-FeOOH] layer may prevent the iron matrix suffering from attacks by other environmental factors due to its good continuity. In addition, less aerated environment of storage and no history of any cleaning of object were also helpful in preventing the iron spear from further deterioration.

Abstract

This study was carried out to investigate the distribution and contents of sixteen priority polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in water from Amassoma axis of the Nun River, Bayelsa State, Nigeria. The PAH contaminations in the river water samples was performed using GC-MS method. The results were similar for all of the three sampling stations. Six LMW PAHs: naphthalene, acenaphthylene, acenaphthene, fluorene, phenanthrene, anthracene and five HMW PAHs: fluoranthene, pyrene benzo (a)anthracene, chrysene and benzo(a)pyrene were found. The ∑ PAHs concentration ranged from 0.111mg/L to 0.26mg/L. In this study, PAH fingerprint ratios for determining both petrogenic and pyrogenic (pyrolytic) PAH accumulation in the environment and Toxic equivalency factor (TEF) used to estimate relative toxicity of a PAH compared to that of BaP was employed. The Ph/An ratio for water samples were 0.00, 0.33 and 0.00 in three stations, while associated figures for Fl/Py ratio values were 0.67, 0.83 and 0.50 respectively. Pearson correlation matrice analysis reveals a positive correlation between the PAHs; this could indicate a common source for some of the PAHs, however, some were negatively correlated with each other. This behavior could indicate non-point source. A comparative analysis of PAHs concentrations in the water samples with WHO standards revealed that the results obtained in this study were within the permissible levels, however, carcinogen PAHs present in the water of the Amassoma axis, Nun River may pose a threats to human health.

Abstract

Plant-mediated synthesis of silver nanoparticles through green chemistry approach has evolved into a new era of research; however, the heterogeneous size and dispersity of silver nanoparticles have limited its applications, such as surface-enhanced Raman scattering, plasmon resonance, and more specifically in the medical field of target drug delivery and therapeutic activity. Here-we investigated the effect of purification and separation modes on the dispersity, size, and morphology of silver nanoparticles, synthesized by plant extract (Nyctanthes arbor-tristis). Transmission electron microscopy revealed silver nanoparticles with an average diameter of 13.0 nm when synthesized through ethanol precipitation, which is advantageously smaller. This result suggests that the silver nanoparticles size can be fine-tuned by changing the separation mode during purification from plant extract. Due to uniformity, our obtained nanoparticles can be expected to show higher catalytic activity towards photochemical reactions, drug delivery and antibacterial activity due to the absence of inactive coating layer (capping agent).