Open Science Research Excellence

Open Science Index

Commenced in January 2007 Frequency: Monthly Edition: International Paper Count: 869

Exergy Analysis of Reverse Osmosis for Potable Water and Land Irrigation

A thermodynamic study is performed on the Reverse Osmosis (RO) desalination process for brackish water. The detailed RO model of thermodynamics properties with and without an energy recovery device was built in Simulink/MATLAB and validated against reported measurement data. The efficiency of desalination plants can be estimated by both the first and second laws of thermodynamics. While the first law focuses on the quantity of energy, the second law analysis (i.e. exergy analysis) introduces quality. This paper used the Main Outfall Drain in Iraq as a case study to conduct energy and exergy analysis of RO process. The result shows that it is feasible to use energy recovery method for reverse osmosis with salinity less than 15000 ppm as the exergy efficiency increases twice. Moreover, this analysis shows that the highest exergy destruction occurs in the rejected water and lowest occurs in the permeate flow rate accounting 37% for 4.3% respectively.

Proposal of Blue and Green Infrastructure for the Jaguaré Stream Watershed, São Paulo, Brazil

The blue-green infrastructure in recent years has been pointed out as a possibility to increase the environmental quality of watersheds. The regulation ecosystem services brought by these areas are many, such as the improvement of the air quality of the air, water, soil, microclimate, besides helping to control the peak flows and to promote the quality of life of the population. This study proposes a blue-green infrastructure scenario for the Jaguaré watershed, located in the western zone of the São Paulo city in Brazil. Based on the proposed scenario, it was verified the impact of the adoption of the blue and green infrastructure in the control of the peak flow of the basin, the benefits for the avifauna that are also reflected in the flora and finally, the quantification of the regulation ecosystem services brought by the adoption of the scenario proposed. A survey of existing green areas and potential areas for expansion and connection of these areas to form a network in the watershed was carried out. Based on this proposed new network of green areas, the peak flow for the proposed scenario was calculated with the help of software, ABC6. Finally, a survey of the ecosystem services contemplated in the proposed scenario was made. It was possible to conclude that the blue and green infrastructure would provide several regulation ecosystem services for the watershed, such as the control of the peak flow, the connection frame between the forest fragments that promoted the environmental enrichment of these fragments, improvement of the microclimate and the provision of leisure areas for the population.

Self-Healing Phenomenon Evaluation in Cementitious Matrix with Different Water/Cement Ratios and Crack Opening Age

Concrete elements are subject to cracking, which can be an access point for deleterious agents that can trigger pathological manifestations reducing the service life of these structures. Finding ways to minimize or eliminate the effects of this aggressive agents’ penetration, such as the sealing of these cracks, is a manner of contributing to the durability of these structures. The cementitious self-healing phenomenon can be classified in two different processes. The autogenous self-healing that can be defined as a natural process in which the sealing of this cracks occurs without the stimulation of external agents, meaning, without different materials being added to the mixture, while on the other hand, the autonomous seal-healing phenomenon depends on the insertion of a specific engineered material added to the cement matrix in order to promote its recovery. This work aims to evaluate the autogenous self-healing of concretes produced with different water/cement ratios and exposed to wet/dry cycles, considering two ages of crack openings, 3 days and 28 days. The self-healing phenomenon was evaluated using two techniques: crack healing measurement using ultrasonic waves and image analysis performed with an optical microscope. It is possible to observe that by both methods, it possible to observe the self-healing phenomenon of the cracks. For young ages of crack openings and lower water/cement ratios, the self-healing capacity is higher when compared to advanced ages of crack openings and higher water/cement ratios. Regardless of the crack opening age, these concretes were found to stabilize the self-healing processes after 80 days or 90 days.

Effective Wind-Induced Natural Ventilation in a Residential Apartment Typology

In India, cooling loads in residential sector is a major contributor to its total energy consumption. Due to the increasing cooling need, the market penetration of air-conditioners is further expected to rise. Natural Ventilation (NV), however, possesses great potential to save significant energy consumption especially for residential buildings in moderate climates. As multifamily residential apartment buildings are designed by repetitive use of prototype designs, deriving individual NV based design prototype solutions for a combination of different wind incidence angles and orientations would provide significant opportunity to address the rise in cooling loads by residential sector. This paper presents the results of NV performance of a selected prototype apartment design with a cluster of four units in Pune, India, and an attempt to improve the NV performance through design modifications. The water table apparatus, a physical modelling tool, is used to study the flow patterns and simulate wind-induced NV performance. Quantification of NV performance is done by post processing images captured from video recordings in terms of percentage of area with good and poor access to ventilation. NV performance of the existing design for eight wind incidence angles showed that of the cluster of four units, the windward units showed good access to ventilation for all rooms, and the leeward units had lower access to ventilation with the bedrooms in the leeward units having the least access. The results showed improved performance in all the units for all wind incidence angles to more than 80% good access to ventilation. Some units showed an additional improvement to more than 90% good access to ventilation. This process of design and performance evaluation improved some individual units from 0% to 100% for good access to ventilation. The results demonstrate the ease of use and the power of the water table apparatus for performance-based design to simulate wind induced NV.  

Solar Seawater Desalination Still with Seawater Preheater Using Efficient Heat Transfer Oil: Numerical Investigation and Data Verification
The feasibility of improving the performance of the proposed solar still unit which operated in very hot climate is investigated numerically and verified with experimental data. This solar desalination unit with proposed auxiliary device as seawater preheating system using petrol based textherm oil was used to produce pure fresh water from seawater. The effective evaporation area of basin is about 1 m2. The unit was tested in two main operation modes which are normal and with seawater preheating system. The results showed that, there is good agreement between the theoretical data and the experimental data; this means that the numerical model can be accurately dependable for predicting the proposed solar still performance and design parameters. The results also showed that the fresh water productivity of the solar still in the modified preheating case which is higher than normal case, leads to an increase in productivity of 42%.
Greywater Treatment Using Activated Biochar Produced from Agricultural Waste

The increase in urbanisation in South Africa has led to an increase in water demand and a decline in freshwater supply. Despite this, poor water usage is still a major challenge in South Africa, for instance, freshwater is still used for non-drinking applications. The freshwater shortage can be alleviated by using other sources of water for non-portable purposes such as greywater treated with activated biochar produced from agricultural waste. The success of activated biochar produced from agricultural waste to treat greywater can be both economically and environmentally beneficial. Greywater treated with activated biochar produced from agricultural waste is considered a cost-effective wastewater treatment.  This work was aimed at determining the ability of activated biochar to remove Total Suspended Solids (TSS), Ammonium (NH4-N), Nitrate (NO3-N), and Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD) from greywater. The experiments were carried out in 800 ml laboratory plastic cylinders used as filter columns. 2.5 cm layer of gravel was used at the bottom and top of the column to sandwich the activated biochar material. Activated biochar (200 g and 400 g) was loaded in a column and used as a filter medium for greywater. Samples were collected after a week and sent for analysis. Four types of greywater were treated: Kitchen, floor cleaning water, shower and laundry water. The findings showed: 95% removal of TSS, 76% of NO3-N and 63% of COD on kitchen greywater and 85% removal of NH4-N on bathroom greywater, as highest removal of efficiency of the studied pollutants. The results showed that activated biochar produced from agricultural waste reduces a certain amount of pollutants from greywater. The results also indicated the ability of activated biochar to treat greywater for onsite non-potable reuse purposes.

Flood Modeling in Urban Area Using a Well-Balanced Discontinuous Galerkin Scheme on Unstructured Triangular Grids
Urban flooding resulting from a sudden release of water due to dam-break or excessive rainfall is a serious threatening environment hazard, which causes loss of human life and large economic losses. Anticipating floods before they occur could minimize human and economic losses through the implementation of appropriate protection, provision, and rescue plans. This work reports on the numerical modelling of flash flood propagation in urban areas after an excessive rainfall event or dam-break. A two-dimensional (2D) depth-averaged shallow water model is used with a refined unstructured grid of triangles for representing the urban area topography. The 2D shallow water equations are solved using a second-order well-balanced discontinuous Galerkin scheme. Theoretical test case and three flood events are described to demonstrate the potential benefits of the scheme: (i) wetting and drying in a parabolic basin (ii) flash flood over a physical model of the urbanized Toce River valley in Italy; (iii) wave propagation on the Reyran river valley in consequence of the Malpasset dam-break in 1959 (France); and (iv) dam-break flood in October 1982 at the town of Sumacarcel (Spain). The capability of the scheme is also verified against alternative models. Computational results compare well with recorded data and show that the scheme is at least as efficient as comparable second-order finite volume schemes, with notable efficiency speedup due to parallelization.
Water Resources Crisis in Saudi Arabia, Challenges and Possible Management Options: An Analytic Review
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) is heading towards a severe and rapidly expanding water crisis, which can have negative impacts on the country’s environment and economy. Of the total water consumption in KSA, the agricultural sector accounts for nearly 87% of the total water use and, therefore, any attempt that overlooks this sector will not help in improving the sustainability of the country’s water resources. KSA Vision 2030 gives priority of water use in the agriculture sector for the regions that have natural renewable water resources. It means that there is little concern for making reuse of municipal wastewater for irrigation purposes in any region in general and in water-scarce regions in particular. The use of treated wastewater is very limited in Saudi Arabia, but it has very considerable potential for future expansion due its numerous beneficial uses. This study reviews the current situation of water resources in Saudi Arabia, providing more highlights on agriculture and wastewater reuse. The reviewed study is proposing some corrective measures for development and better management of water resources in the Kingdom. Suggestions also include consideration of treated water as an alternative source for irrigation in some regions of the country. The study concluded that a sustainable solution for the water crisis in KSA requires implementation of multiple measures in an integrated manner. The integrated solution plan should focus on two main directions: first, improving the current management practices of the existing water resources; second, developing new water supplies from both conventional and non-conventional sources.
Determination of Soil Loss by Erosion in Different Land Covers Categories and Slope Classes in Bovilla Watershed, Tirana, Albania

As a sediment production mechanism, soil erosion is the main environmental threat to the Bovilla watershed, including the decline of water quality of the Bovilla reservoir that provides drinking water to Tirana city (the capital of Albania). Therefore, an experiment with 25 erosion plots for soil erosion monitoring has been set up since June 2017. The aim was to determine the soil loss on plot and watershed scale in Bovilla watershed (Tirana region) for implementation of soil and water protection measures or payments for ecosystem services (PES) programs. The results of erosion monitoring for the period June 2017 - May 2018 showed that the highest values of surface runoff were noted in bare land of 38829.91 liters on slope of 74% and the lowest values in forest land of 12840.6 liters on slope of 64% while the highest values of soil loss were found in bare land of 595.15 t/ha on slope of 62% and lowest values in forest land of 18.99 t/ha on slope of 64%. These values are much higher than the average rate of soil loss in the European Union (2.46 ton/ha/year). In the same sloping class, the soil loss was reduced from orchard or bare land to the forest land, and in the same category of land use, the soil loss increased with increasing land slope. It is necessary to conduct chemical analyses of sediments to determine the amount of chemical elements leached out of the soil and end up in the reservoir of Bovilla. It is concluded that PES programs should be implemented for rehabilitation of sub-watersheds Ranxe, Vilez and Zall-Bastar of the Bovilla watershed with valuable conservation practices.

Design and Fabrication of a Parabolic Trough Collector and Experimental Investigation of Wind Impact on Direct Steam Production in Tehran

The present paper aims to the techno-economic feasibility of enhancing low-cost parabolic trough collectors in the light of developing the use of solar energy in under-developed regions where expensive high-tech solar devices cannot be afforded. Moreover, the collector is aimed to produce steam so that its performance is based on heat which can be discovered. In this regard, the manufacturing process and the detailed design models in Solidworks software are elaborated. Furthermore, the colletor’s material is chosen in a way to minimize the costs. Finally, to assess the performance of the built collector, it is installed in the site of Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran, and the values of the effective peripheral parameters, such as temperature, wind speed, and most importantly, solar irradiance, are recorded simultaneously in June. According to the results obtained, the manufactured collector with the aperture area of 2 m2 (1×2 m) is capable of producing 350 ml.h-1 steam. Also, the wind influence is comprehensively investigated in this paper. As a case in point, it was measured that as the wind speed maximized to 9.77 km/h, the amount of steam outlet is minimized to 580 ml.

Using GIS and Map Data for the Analysis of the Relationship between Soil and Groundwater Quality at Saline Soil Area of Kham Sakaesaeng District, Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand
The study area is Kham Sakaesaeng District in Nakhon Ratchasima Province, the south section of Northeastern Thailand, located in the Lower Khorat-Ubol Basin. This region is the one of saline soil area, located in a dry plateau and regularly experience standing with periods of floods and alternating with periods of drought. Especially, the drought in the summer season causes the major saline soil and saline water problems of this region. The general cause of dry land salting resulted from salting on irrigated land, and an excess of water leading to the rising water table in the aquifer. The purpose of this study is to determine the relationship of physical and chemical properties between the soil and groundwater. The soil and groundwater samples were collected in both rainy and summer seasons. The content of pH, electrical conductivity (EC), total dissolved solids (TDS), chloride and salinity were investigated. The experimental result of soil and groundwater samples show the slightly pH less than 7, EC (186 to 8,156 us/cm and 960 to 10,712 us/cm), TDS (93 to 3,940 ppm and 480 to 5,356 ppm), chloride content (45.58 to 4,177,015 mg/l and 227.90 to 9,216,736 mg/l), and salinity (0.07 to 4.82 ppt and 0.24 to 14.46 ppt) in the rainy and summer seasons, respectively. The distribution of chloride content and salinity content were interpolated and displayed as a map by using ArcMap 10.3 program, according to the season. The result of saline soil and brined groundwater in the study area were related to the low-lying topography, drought area, and salt-source exposure. Especially, the Rock Salt Member of Maha Sarakham Formation was exposed or lies near the ground surface in this study area. During the rainy season, salt was eroded or weathered from the salt-source rock formation and transported by surface flow or leached into the groundwater. In the dry season, the ground surface is dry enough resulting salt precipitates from the brined surface water or rises from the brined groundwater influencing the increasing content of chloride and salinity in the ground surface and groundwater.
Closed Greenhouse Production Systems for Smart Plant Production in Urban Areas

The integration of agricultural production systems into urban areas is a challenge for the coming decades. Because of increasing greenhouse gas emission and rising resource consumption as well as costs in animal husbandry, the dietary habits of people in the 21st century have to focus on herbal foods. Intensive plant cultivation systems in large cities and megacities require a smart coupling of information, material and energy flow with the urban infrastructure in terms of Horticulture 4.0. In recent years, many puzzle pieces have been developed for these closed processes at the Humboldt University. To compile these for an urban plant production, it has to be optimized and networked with urban infrastructure systems. In the field of heat energy production, it was shown that with closed greenhouse technology and patented heat exchange and storage technology energy can be provided for heating and domestic hot water supply in the city. Closed water circuits can be drastically reducing the water requirements of plant production in urban areas. Ion sensitive sensors and new disinfection methods can help keep circulating nutrient solutions in the system for a longer time in urban plant production greenhouses.

Variations in Water Supply and Quality in Selected Groundwater Sources in a Part of Southwest Nigeria

The study mapped selected wells in Inisa town, Osun state, in the guinea savanna region of southwest Nigeria, and determined the water quality considering certain elements. It also assessed the variation in the elevation of the water table surface to depth of the wells in the months of August and November. This is with a view to determine the level of contamination of the water with respect to land use and anthropogenic activities, and also to determine the variation that occurs in the quantity of well water in the rainy season and the start of the dry season. Results show a random pattern of the distribution of the mapped wells and shows that there is a shallow water table in the study area. The temporal changes in the elevation show that there are no significant variations in the depth of the water table surface over the period of study implying that there is a sufficient amount of water available to the town all year round. It also shows a high concentration of sodium in the water sample analyzed compared to other elements that were considered, which include iron, copper, calcium, and lead. This is attributed majorly to anthropogenic activities through the disposal of waste in landfill sites. There is a low concentration of lead which is a good indication of a reduced level of pollution.

An Investigation into the Impact of the Relocation of Tannery Industry on Water Quality Parameters of Urban River Buriganga

The study deals with an investigation into the impact of the relocation of tannery industry on water quality parameters of Buriganga. For this purpose, previous records have been collected from authentic data resources and for the attainment of present values, several samples were collected from three major locations of the Buriganga River during summer and winter seasons in 2018 to determine the distribution and variation of water quality parameters. Samples were collected six ft below the river water surface. Analysis indicates slightly acidic to slightly alkaline (6.8-7.49) in nature. Bio-Chemical Oxygen Demand, Total Dissolved Solids, Total Solids (TS) & Total Suspended Solids (TSS) have been found greater in summer. On the other hand, Dissolved Oxygen is found greater in rainy seasons. Relocation shows improvement in water quality parameters. Though the improvement related to relocation of tannery industry is not adequate to turn the water body to be an inhabitable place for aquatic lives.

Modeling of Water Erosion in the M'Goun Watershed Using OpenGIS Software

Water erosion is the major cause of the erosion that shapes the earth's surface. Modeling water erosion requires the use of software and GIS programs, commercial or closed source. The very high prices for commercial GIS licenses, motivates users and researchers to find open source software as relevant and applicable as the proprietary GIS. The objective of this study is the modeling of water erosion and the hydrogeological and morphophysical characterization of the Oued M'Goun watershed (southern flank of the Central High Atlas) developed by free programs of GIS. The very pertinent results are obtained by executing tasks and algorithms in a simple and easy way. Thus, the various geoscientific and geostatistical analyzes of a digital elevation model (SRTM 30 m resolution) and their combination with the treatments and interpretation of satellite imagery information allowed us to characterize the region studied and to map the area most vulnerable to water erosion.

Evaluation of the Performance of ACTIFLO® Clarifier in the Treatment of Mining Wastewaters: Case Study of Costerfield Mining Operations, Victoria, Australia

A pre-treatment stage prior to reverse osmosis (RO) is very important to ensure the long-term performance of the RO membranes in any wastewater treatment using RO. This study aims to evaluate the application of the Actiflo® clarifier as part of a pre-treatment unit in mining operations. It involves performing analytical testing on RO feed water before and after installation of Actiflo® unit. Water samples prior to RO plant stage were obtained on different dates from Costerfield mining operations in Victoria, Australia. Tests were conducted in an independent laboratory to determine the concentration of various compounds in RO feed water before and after installation of Actiflo® unit during the entire evaluated period from December 2015 to June 2018. Water quality analysis shows that the quality of RO feed water has remarkably improved since installation of Actiflo® clarifier. Suspended solids (SS) and turbidity removal efficiencies has been improved by 91 and 85 percent respectively in pre-treatment system since the installation of Actiflo®. The Actiflo® clarifier proved to be a valuable part of pre-treatment system prior to RO. It has the potential to conveniently condition the mining wastewater prior to RO unit, and reduce the risk of RO physical failure and irreversible fouling. Consequently, reliable and durable operation of RO unit with minimum requirement for RO membrane replacement is expected with Actiflo® in use.

Urban Waste Water Governance in South Africa: A Case Study of Stellenbosch
Due to climate change, population growth and rapid urbanization, the demand for water in South Africa is inevitably surpassing supply. To address similar challenges globally, there has been a paradigm shift from conventional urban waste water management “government” to a “governance” paradigm. From the governance paradigm, Integrated Urban Water Management (IUWM) principle emerged. This principle emphasizes efficient urban waste water treatment and production of high-quality recyclable effluent. In so doing mimicking natural water systems, in their processes of recycling water efficiently, and averting depletion of natural water resources.  The objective of this study was to investigate drivers of shifting the current urban waste water management approach from a “government” paradigm towards “governance”. The study was conducted through Interactive Management soft systems research methodology which follows a qualitative research design. A case study methodology was employed, guided by realism research philosophy. Qualitative data gathered were analyzed through interpretative structural modelling using Concept Star for Professionals Decision-Making tools (CSPDM) version 3.64.  The constructed model deduced that the main drivers in shifting the Stellenbosch municipal urban waste water management towards IUWM “governance” principles are mainly social elements characterized by overambitious expectations of the public on municipal water service delivery, mis-interpretation of the constitution on access to adequate clean water and sanitation as a human right and perceptions on recycling water by different communities. Inadequate public participation also emerged as a strong driver. However, disruptive events such as draught may play a positive role in raising an awareness on the value of water, resulting in a shift on the perceptions on recycled water. Once the social elements are addressed, the alignment of governance and administration elements towards IUWM are achievable. Hence, the point of departure for the desired paradigm shift is the change of water service authorities and serviced communities’ perceptions and behaviors towards shifting urban waste water management approaches from “government” to “governance” paradigm.
A Finite Element/Finite Volume Method for Dam-Break Flows over Deformable Beds
A coupled two-layer finite volume/finite element method was proposed for solving dam-break flow problem over deformable beds. The governing equations consist of the well-balanced two-layer shallow water equations for the water flow and a linear elastic model for the bed deformations. Deformations in the topography can be caused by a brutal localized force or simply by a class of sliding displacements on the bathymetry. This deformation in the bed is a source of perturbations, on the water surface generating water waves which propagate with different amplitudes and frequencies. Coupling conditions at the interface are also investigated in the current study and two mesh procedure is proposed for the transfer of information through the interface. In the present work a new procedure is implemented at the soil-water interface using the finite element and two-layer finite volume meshes with a conservative distribution of the forces at their intersections. The finite element method employs quadratic elements in an unstructured triangular mesh and the finite volume method uses the Rusanove to reconstruct the numerical fluxes. The numerical coupled method is highly efficient, accurate, well balanced, and it can handle complex geometries as well as rapidly varying flows. Numerical results are presented for several test examples of dam-break flows over deformable beds. Mesh convergence study is performed for both methods, the overall model provides new insight into the problems at minimal computational cost.
A Constitutional Approach to the Rights to Water and Energy
The present paper focuses on human rights to the water and to the energy and has a scope to promote the legal status on sustainable construction. The right to water constitutes a typical example of 3G fundamental rights, like the right to enjoyment of energy, particularly of electricity, whilst the right to energy efficiency is a right of fourth generation. Both rights to water and energy are examined through their consecration in the framework of the above-mentioned generations. It results that not only decision-makers but also citizens should fight for the further consecration and adequate use of these crucial rights, having to do with the urgent problem of climate change and the sustainable development. The time for the principle of water and energy “rule of law” has come.
Quantitative Changes in Biofilms of a Seawater Tubular Heat Exchanger Subjected to Electromagnetic Fields Treatment
Biofilms adhesion is one of the more important cost of industries plants on wide world, which use to water for cooling heat exchangers or are in contact with water. This study evaluated the effect of Electromagnetic Fields on biofilms in tubular heat exchangers using seawater cooling. The results showed an up to 40% reduction of the biofilm thickness compared to the untreated control tubes. The presence of organic matter was reduced by 75%, the inorganic mater was reduced by 87%, and 53% of the dissolved solids were eliminated. The biofilm thermal conductivity in the treated tube was reduced by 53% as compared to the control tube. The hardness in the effluent during the experimental period was decreased by 18% in the treated tubes compared with control tubes. Our results show that the electromagnetic fields treatment has a great potential in the process of removing biofilms in heat exchanger.
Carcass Characteristics and Qualities of Philippine White Mallard (Anas boschas L.) and Pekin (Anas platyrhynchos L.) Duck
The Philippine White Mallard duck was compared with Pekin duck for potential meat production. A total of 50 ducklings were randomly assigned to five (5) pens per treatment after one month of brooding. Each pen containing five (5) ducks was considered as a replicate. The ducks were raised until 12 weeks of age and slaughtered at the end of the growing period. Meat from both breeds was analyzed. The data were subjected to the Independent-Sample T-test at 5% level of confidence. Results showed that post-mortem pH (0, 20 minutes, 50 minutes, 1 hour and 20 minutes, 1 hour and 50 minutes, and 24 hours ) did not differ significantly (P>0.05) between breeds. However, Pekin ducks (89.84±0.71) had a significantly higher water-holding capacity than Philippine White Mallard ducks (87.93±0.63) (P<0.05). Also, meat color (CIE L, a, b) revealed that no significant differences among the lightness, redness, and yellowness of the skin (breast) in both breeds (P>0.05) except for the yellowness of the lean muscles of the Pekin duck breast. Pekin duck meat (1.15±0.04) had significantly higher crude fat content than Philippine White Mallard (0.47±0.58). The study clearly showed that breed is a factor and provided some pronounced effects among the parameters. However, these results are considered as preliminary information on the meat quality of Philippine White Mallard duck. Hence, further studies are needed to understand and fully utilize it for meat production and develop different meat products from this breed.
Segmentation of Gray Scale Images of Dropwise Condensation on Textured Surfaces
In the present work we developed an image processing algorithm to measure water droplets characteristics during dropwise condensation on pillared surfaces. The main problem in this process is the similarity between shape and size of water droplets and the pillars. The developed method divides droplets into four main groups based on their size and applies the corresponding algorithm to segment each group. These algorithms generate binary images of droplets based on both their geometrical and intensity properties. The information related to droplets evolution during time including mean radius and drops number per unit area are then extracted from the binary images. The developed image processing algorithm is verified using manual detection and applied to two different sets of images corresponding to two kinds of pillared surfaces.
Comparative Exergy Analysis of Ammonia-Water Rankine Cycles and Kalina Cycle
This paper presents a comparative exergy analysis of ammonia-water Rankine cycles with and without regeneration and Kalina cycle for recovery of low-temperature heat source. Special attention is paid to the effect of system parameters such as ammonia mass fraction and turbine inlet pressure on the exergetical performance of the systems. Results show that maximum exergy efficiency can be obtained in the regenerative Rankine cycle for high turbine inlet pressures. However, Kalina cycle shows better exergy efficiency for low turbine inlet pressures, and the optimum ammonia mass fractions of Kalina cycle are lower than Rankine cycles.
Functionality and Application of Rice Bran Protein Hydrolysates in Oil in Water Emulsions: Their Stabilities to Environmental Stresses

Rice bran protein hydrolysates (RBPH) were prepared from defatted rice bran of two different Thai rice cultivars (Plai-Ngahm-Prachinburi; PNP and Khao Dok Mali 105; KDM105) using an enzymatic method. This research aimed to optimize enzyme-assisted protein extraction. In addition, the functional properties of RBPH and their stabilities to environmental stresses including pH (3 to 8), ionic strength (0 mM to 500 mM) and the thermal treatment (30 °C to 90 °C) were investigated. Results showed that enzymatic process for protein extraction of defatted rice bran was as follows: enzyme concentration 0.075 g/ 5 g of protein, extraction temperature 50 °C and extraction time 4 h. The obtained protein hydrolysate powders had a degree of hydrolysis (%) of 21.05% in PNP and 19.92% in KDM105. The solubility of protein hydrolysates at pH 4-6 was ranged from 27.28-38.57% and 27.60-43.00% in PNP and KDM105, respectively. In general, antioxidant activities indicated by total phenolic content, FRAP, ferrous ion-chelating (FIC), and 2,2’-azino-bis-3-ethylbenzthiazoline-6-sulphonic acid (ABTS) of KDM105 had higher than PNP. In terms of functional properties, the emulsifying activity index (EAI) was was 8.78 m²/g protein in KDM105, whereas PNP was 5.05 m²/g protein. The foaming capacity at 5 minutes (%) was 47.33 and 52.98 in PNP and KDM105, respectively. Glutamine, Alanine, Valine, and Leucine are the major amino acid in protein hydrolysates where the total amino acid of KDM105 gave higher than PNP. Furthermore, we investigated environmental stresses on the stability of 5% oil in water emulsion (5% oil, 10 mM citrate buffer) stabilized by RBPH (3.5%). The droplet diameter of emulsion stabilized by KDM105 was smaller (d < 250 nm) than produced by PNP. For environmental stresses, RBPH stabilized emulsions were stable at pH around 3 and 5-6, at high salt (< 400 mM, pH 7) and at temperatures range between 30-50°C.

Sunflower Irrigation with Two Different Types of Soil Moisture Sensors

Irrigation is one of the most important cultivation practices for each crop, especially in areas where rainfall is enough to cover the crop water needs. In such areas, the farmers must irrigate in order to achieve high economical results. The precise irrigation scheduling contributes to irrigation water saving and thus a valuable natural resource is protected. Under this point of view, in the experimental field of the Laboratory of Agricultural Hydraulics of the University of Thessaly, a research was conducted during the growing season of 2012 in order to evaluate the growth, seed and oil production of sunflower as well as the water saving, by applying different methods of irrigation scheduling. Three treatments in four replications were organized. These were: a) surface drip irrigation where the irrigation scheduling based on the Penman-Monteith (PM) method (control); b) surface drip irrigation where the irrigation scheduling based on a soil moisture sensor (SMS); and c) surface drip irrigation, where the irrigation scheduling based on a soil potential sensor (WM).

Participation in IAEA Proficiency Test to Analyse Cobalt, Strontium and Caesium in Seawater Using Direct Counting and Radiochemical Techniques

Radiation monitoring in the environment and foodstuffs is one of the main responsibilities of Office of Atoms for Peace (OAP) as the nuclear regulatory body of Thailand. The main goal of the OAP is to assure the safety of the Thai people and environment from any radiological incidents. Various radioanalytical methods have been developed to monitor radiation and radionuclides in the environmental and foodstuff samples. To validate our analytical performance, several proficiency test exercises from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) have been performed. Here, the results of a proficiency test exercise referred to as the Proficiency Test for Tritium, Cobalt, Strontium and Caesium Isotopes in Seawater 2017 (IAEA-RML-2017-01) are presented. All radionuclides excepting ³H were analysed using various radioanalytical methods, i.e. direct gamma-ray counting for determining ⁶⁰Co, ¹³⁴Cs and ¹³⁷Cs and developed radiochemical techniques for analysing ¹³⁴Cs, ¹³⁷Cs using AMP pre-concentration technique and 90Sr using di-(2-ethylhexyl) phosphoric acid (HDEHP) liquid extraction technique. The analysis results were submitted to IAEA. All results passed IAEA criteria, i.e. accuracy, precision and trueness and obtained ‘Accepted’ statuses. These confirm the data quality from the OAP environmental radiation laboratory to monitor radiation in the environment.

Experimental Analysis of the Influence of Water Mass Flow Rate on the Performance of a CO2 Direct-Expansion Solar Assisted Heat Pump

Energy use is one of the main indicators for the economic and social development of a country, reflecting directly in the quality of life of the population. The expansion of energy use together with the depletion of fossil resources and the poor efficiency of energy systems have led many countries in recent years to invest in renewable energy sources. In this context, solar-assisted heat pump has become very important in energy industry, since it can transfer heat energy from the sun to water or another absorbing source. The direct-expansion solar assisted heat pump (DX-SAHP) water heater system operates by receiving solar energy incident in a solar collector, which serves as an evaporator in a refrigeration cycle, and the energy reject by the condenser is used for water heating. In this paper, a DX-SAHP using carbon dioxide as refrigerant (R744) was assembled, and the influence of the variation of the water mass flow rate in the system was analyzed. The parameters such as high pressure, water outlet temperature, gas cooler outlet temperature, evaporator temperature, and the coefficient of performance were studied. The mainly components used to assemble the heat pump were a reciprocating compressor, a gas cooler which is a countercurrent concentric tube heat exchanger, a needle-valve, and an evaporator that is a copper bare flat plate solar collector designed to capture direct and diffuse radiation. Routines were developed in the LabVIEW and CoolProp through MATLAB software’s, respectively, to collect data and calculate the thermodynamics properties. The range of coefficient of performance measured was from 3.2 to 5.34. It was noticed that, with the higher water mass flow rate, the water outlet temperature decreased, and consequently, the coefficient of performance of the system increases since the heat transfer in the gas cooler is higher. In addition, the high pressure of the system and the CO2 gas cooler outlet temperature decreased. The heat pump using carbon dioxide as a refrigerant, especially operating with solar radiation has been proven to be a renewable source in an efficient system for heating residential water compared to electrical heaters reaching temperatures between 40 °C and 80 °C.

Development of Numerical Model to Compute Water Hammer Transients in Pipe Flow

Water hammer is a hydraulic transient problem which is commonly encountered in the penstocks of hydropower plants. The numerical model was developed to estimate the transient behavior of pressure waves in pipe systems. The computational algorithm was proposed to model the water hammer phenomenon in a pipe system with pump shutdown at midstream and sudden valve closure at downstream. To predict the pressure head and flow velocity as a function of time as a result of rapidly closing a valve and pump shutdown, two boundary conditions at the ends considering pump operation and valve control can be implemented as specified equations of the pressure head and flow velocity based on the characteristics method. It was shown that the effects of transient flow make it determine the needs for protection devices, such as surge tanks, surge relief valves, or air valves, at various points in the system against overpressure and low pressure. It produced reasonably good performance with the results of the proposed transient model for pipeline systems. The proposed numerical model can be used as an efficient tool for the safety assessment of hydropower plants due to water hammer.

A Hybrid Artificial Intelligence and Two Dimensional Depth Averaged Numerical Model for Solving Shallow Water and Exner Equations Simultaneously

Modeling sediment transport processes by means of numerical approach often poses severe challenges. In this way, a number of techniques have been suggested to solve flow and sediment equations in decoupled, semi-coupled or fully coupled forms. Furthermore, in order to capture flow discontinuities, a number of techniques, like artificial viscosity and shock fitting, have been proposed for solving these equations which are mostly required careful calibration processes. In this research, a numerical scheme for solving shallow water and Exner equations in fully coupled form is presented. First-Order Centered scheme is applied for producing required numerical fluxes and the reconstruction process is carried out toward using Monotonic Upstream Scheme for Conservation Laws to achieve a high order scheme.  In order to satisfy C-property of the scheme in presence of bed topography, Surface Gradient Method is proposed. Combining the presented scheme with fourth order Runge-Kutta algorithm for time integration yields a competent numerical scheme. In addition, to handle non-prismatic channels problems, Cartesian Cut Cell Method is employed. A trained Multi-Layer Perceptron Artificial Neural Network which is of Feed Forward Back Propagation (FFBP) type estimates sediment flow discharge in the model rather than usual empirical formulas. Hydrodynamic part of the model is tested for showing its capability in simulation of flow discontinuities, transcritical flows, wetting/drying conditions and non-prismatic channel flows. In this end, dam-break flow onto a locally non-prismatic converging-diverging channel with initially dry bed conditions is modeled. The morphodynamic part of the model is verified simulating dam break on a dry movable bed and bed level variations in an alluvial junction. The results show that the model is capable in capturing the flow discontinuities, solving wetting/drying problems even in non-prismatic channels and presenting proper results for movable bed situations. It can also be deducted that applying Artificial Neural Network, instead of common empirical formulas for estimating sediment flow discharge, leads to more accurate results.

Ultrasound Assisted Extraction and Microwave Assisted Extraction of Carotenoids from Melon Shells
Cantaloupes (muskmelon and watermelon) contain biologically active molecules such as carotenoids which are natural pigments used as food colorants and afford health benefits. ß-carotene is the major source of carotenoids present in muskmelon and watermelon shell. Carotenoids were extracted using Microwave assisted extraction (MAE) and Ultrasound assisted extraction (UAE) utilising organic lipophilic solvents such as acetone, methanol, and hexane. Extraction conditions feed-solvent ratio, microwave power, ultrasound frequency, temperature and particle size were varied and optimized. It was found that the yield of carotenoids was higher using UAE than MAE, and muskmelon had the highest yield of carotenoids when was ethanol used as a solvent for 0.5 mm particle size.
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