Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 6

Characterisation Related Abstracts

6 Weathering of a Calcarenite Stone in the Archaeological Site of Volubilis – Morocco

Authors: Issam Aalil, Kevin Beck, Khalid Cherkaoui, Xavier Brunetaud, Ali Chaaba, Muzahim Al-Mukhtar


Volubilis is the most important archaeological site in Morocco. It was founded in the 3rd century B.C about thirty kilometres north of Meknes and has been registered on the UNESCO World Heritage list since 1997. The site is located in a region where reigns the semi-arid continental climate, characterized by strong thermal amplitudes. A beige-yellowish calcarenite limestone is the most largely used on Volubilis site, representing about 60% of the total volume of building stones. This limestone is mainly affected by scaling and sanding according to field observations. In order to preserve monuments of this site, characterization of calcarenite weathering is essential. This work aims at investigating the nature of the dominant weathering. For this goal, mineralogical compositions of deteriorated and fresh samples are compared. Besides, the risk of damage by thermal stresses is estimated. The results of this study show that there is no major difference observed between the mineralogy of the fresh and weathered calcarenite samples. Otherwise, thermal stresses may have an important role in the weathering of calcarenite limestone by fatigue.

Keywords: Characterisation, Stone, Weathering, thermal stresses, Volubilis

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5 Beijerinckia indica Extracellular Extract Mediated Green Synthesis of Silver Nanoparticles with Antioxidant and Antibacterial Activities against Clinical Pathogens

Authors: Gopalu Karunakaran, Matheswaran Jagathambal, Nguyen Van Minh, Evgeny Kolesnikov, Denis Kuznetsov


This work investigated the use of Beijerinckia indica extracellular extract for the synthesis of silver nanoparticles using AgNO3. The formation of nanoparticles was confirmed by different methods, such as UV-Vis absorption spectroscopy, XRD, FTIR, EDX, and TEM analysis. The formation of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) was confirmed by the change in color from light yellow to dark brown. The absorbance peak obtained at 430 nm confirmed the presence of silver nanoparticles. The XRD analysis showed the cubic crystalline phase of the synthesized nanoparticles. FTIR revealed the presence of groups that acts as stabilizing and reducing agents for silver nanoparticles formation. The synthesized silver nanoparticles were generally found to be spherical in shape with size ranging from 5 to 20 nm, as evident by TEM analysis. These nanoparticles were found to inhibit pathogenic bacterial strains. This work proved that the bacterial extract is a potential eco-friendly candidate for the synthesis of silver nanoparticles with promising antibacterial and antioxidant properties. 

Keywords: Characterisation, Antimicrobial activity, Silver Nanoparticles, antioxidant activity, Beijerinckia indica, extracellular extracts

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4 Household Solid Waste Generation per Capita and Management Behaviour in Mthatha City, South Africa

Authors: Vuyayo Tsheleza, Simbarashe Ndhleve, Christopher Mpundu Musampa


Mismanagement of waste is continuously emerging as a rising malpractice in most developing countries, especially in fast growing cities. Household solid waste in Mthatha has been reported to be one of the problems facing the city and is overwhelming local authorities, as it is beyond the environment and management capacity of the existing waste management system. This study estimates per capita waste generation, quantity of different waste types generated by inhabitants of formal and informal settlements in Mthatha as well as waste management practices in the aforementioned socio-economic stratums. A total of 206 households were systematically selected for the study using stratified random sampling categorized into formal and informal settlements. Data on household waste generation rate, composition, awareness, and household waste management behaviour and practices was gathered through mixed methods. Sampled households from both formal and informal settlements with a total of 684 people generated 1949kg per week. This translates to 2.84kg per capita per week. On average, the rate of solid waste generation per capita was 0.40 kg per day for a person living in informal settlement and 0.56 kg per day person living in formal settlement. When recorded in descending order, the proportion food waste accounted for the most generated waste at approximately 23.7%, followed by disposable nappies at 15%, papers and cardboards 13.34%, glass 13.03%, metals at 11.99%, plastics at 11.58%, residue at 5.17, textiles 3.93%, with leather and rubber at 2.28% as the least generated waste type. Different waste management practices were reported in both formal and informal settlements with formal settlements proving to be more concerned about environmental management as compared to their counterparts, informal settlement. Understanding attitudes and perceptions on waste management, waste types and per capita solid waste generation rate can help evolve appropriate waste management strategies based on the principle of reduce, re-use, recycle, environmental sound disposal and also assist in projecting future waste generation rate. These results can be utilized as input when designing growing cities’ waste management plans.

Keywords: Characterisation, Quantification, awareness, per capita

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3 Production, Characterisation and Assessment of Biomixture Fuels for Compression Ignition Engine Application

Authors: K. Masera, A. K. Hossain


Hardly any neat biodiesel satisfies the European EN14214 standard for compression ignition engine application. To satisfy the EN14214 standard, various additives are doped into biodiesel; however, biodiesel additives might cause other problems such as increase in the particular emission and increased specific fuel consumption. In addition, the additives could be expensive. Considering the increasing level of greenhouse gas GHG emissions and fossil fuel depletion, it is forecasted that the use of biodiesel will be higher in the near future. Hence, the negative aspects of the biodiesel additives will likely to gain much more importance and need to be replaced with better solutions. This study aims to satisfy the European standard EN14214 by blending the biodiesels derived from sustainable feedstocks. Waste Cooking Oil (WCO) and Animal Fat Oil (AFO) are two sustainable feedstocks in the EU (including the UK) for producing biodiesels. In the first stage of the study, these oils were transesterified separately and neat biodiesels (W100 & A100) were produced. Secondly, the biodiesels were blended together in various ratios: 80% WCO biodiesel and 20% AFO biodiesel (W80A20), 60% WCO biodiesel and 40% AFO biodiesel (W60A40), 50% WCO biodiesel and 50% AFO biodiesel (W50A50), 30% WCO biodiesel and 70% AFO biodiesel (W30A70), 10% WCO biodiesel and 90% AFO biodiesel (W10A90). The prepared samples were analysed using Thermo Scientific Trace 1300 Gas Chromatograph and ISQ LT Mass Spectrometer (GC-MS). The GS-MS analysis gave Fatty Acid Methyl Ester (FAME) breakdowns of the fuel samples. It was found that total saturation degree of the samples was linearly increasing (from 15% for W100 to 54% for A100) as the percentage of the AFO biodiesel was increased. Furthermore, it was found that WCO biodiesel was mainly (82%) composed of polyunsaturated FAMEs. Cetane numbers, iodine numbers, calorific values, lower heating values and the densities (at 15 oC) of the samples were estimated by using the mass percentages data of the FAMEs. Besides, kinematic viscosities (at 40 °C and 20 °C), densities (at 15 °C), heating values and flash point temperatures of the biomixture samples were measured in the lab. It was found that estimated and measured characterisation results were comparable. The current study concluded that biomixture fuel samples W60A40 and W50A50 were perfectly satisfying the European EN 14214 norms without any need of additives. Investigation on engine performance, exhaust emission and combustion characteristics will be conducted to assess the full feasibility of the proposed biomixture fuels.

Keywords: Characterisation, Biodiesel, CI engine, blending

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2 Characterisation, Extraction of Secondary Metabolite from Perilla frutescens for Therapeutic Additives: A Phytogenic Approach

Authors: B. M. Vishal, Monamie Basu, Gopinath M., Rose Havilah Pulla


Though there are several methods of synthesizing silver nano particles, Green synthesis always has its own dignity. Ranging from the cost-effectiveness to the ease of synthesis, the process is simplified in the best possible way and is one of the most explored topics. This study of extracting secondary metabolites from Perilla frutescens and using them for therapeutic additives has its own significance. Unlike the other researches that have been done so far, this study aims to synthesize Silver nano particles from Perilla frutescens using three available forms of the plant: leaves, seed, and commercial leaf extract powder. Perilla frutescens, commonly known as 'Beefsteak Plant', is a perennial plant and belongs to the mint family. The plant has two varieties classed within itself. They are frutescens crispa and frutescens frutescens. The species, frutescens crispa (commonly known as 'Shisho' in Japanese), is generally used for edible purposes. Its leaves occur in two forms, varying on the colors. It is found in two different colors of red with purple streaks and green with crinkly pattern on it. This species is aromatic due to the presence of two major compounds: polyphenols and perillaldehyde. The red (purple streak) variety of this plant is due to the presence of a pigment, Perilla anthocyanin. The species, frutescens frutescens (commonly known as 'Egoma' in Japanese), is the main source for perilla oil. This species is also aromatic, but in this case, the major compound which gives the aroma is Perilla ketone or egoma ketone. Shisho grows short as compared with Wild Sesame and both produce seeds. The seeds of Wild Sesame are large and soft whereas that of Shisho is small and hard. The seeds have a large proportion of lipids, ranging about 38-45 percent. Excluding those, the seeds have a large quantity of Omega-3 fatty acids, linoleic acid, and an Omega-6 fatty acid. Other than these, Perilla leaf extract has gold and silver nano particles in it. The yield comparison in all the cases have been done, and the process’ optimal conditions were modified, keeping in mind the efficiencies. The characterization of secondary metabolites includes GC-MS and FTIR which can be used to identify the components of purpose that actually helps in synthesizing silver nano particles. The analysis of silver was done through a series of characterization tests that include XRD, UV-Vis, EDAX, and SEM. After the synthesis, for being used as therapeutic additives, the toxin analysis was done, and the results were tabulated. The synthesis of silver nano particles was done in a series of multiple cycles of extraction from leaves, seeds and commercially purchased leaf extract. The yield and efficiency comparison were done to bring out the best and the cheapest possible way of synthesizing silver nano particles using Perilla frutescens. The synthesized nano particles can be used in therapeutic drugs, which has a wide range of application from burn treatment to cancer treatment. This will, in turn, replace the traditional processes of synthesizing nano particles, as this method will prove effective in terms of cost and the environmental implications.

Keywords: Nanoparticles, Characterisation, Green Synthesis, Toxin Analysis, Perilla frutescens

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1 Isolation, Purification and Characterisation of Non-Digestible Oligosaccharides Derived from Extracellular Polysaccharide of Antarctic Fungus Thelebolus Sp. IITKGP-BT12

Authors: Abinaya Balasubramanian, Satyabrata Ghosh, Satyahari Dey


Non-Digestible Oligosaccharides(NDOs) are low molecular weight carbohydrates with degree of polymerization (DP) 3-20, that are delivered intact to the large intestine. NDOs are gaining attention as effective prebiotic molecules that facilitate prevention and treatment of several chronic diseases. Recently, NDOs are being obtained by cleaving complex polysaccharides as it results in high yield and also as the former tend to display greater bioactivity. Thelebolus sp. IITKGP BT-12, a recently identified psychrophilic, Ascomycetes fungus has been reported to produce a bioactive extracellular polysaccharide(EPS). The EPS has been proved to possess strong prebiotic activity and anti- proliferative effects. The current study is an attempt to identify and optimise the most suitable method for hydrolysis of the above mentioned novel EPS into NDOs, and further purify and characterise the same. Among physical, chemical and enzymatic methods, enzymatic hydrolysis was identified as the best method and the optimum hydrolysis conditions obtained using response surface methodology were: reaction time of 24h, β-(1,3) endo-glucanase concentration of 0.53U and substrate concentration of 10 mg/ml. The NDOs were purified using gel filtration chromatography and their molecular weights were determined using MALDI-TOF. The major fraction was found to have a DP of 7,8. The monomeric units of the NDOs were confirmed to be glucose using TLC and GCMS-MS analysis. The obtained oligosaccharides proved to be non-digestible when subjected to gastric acidity, salivary and pancreatic amylases and hence could serve as efficient prebiotics.

Keywords: Characterisation, Enzymatic Hydrolysis, response surface methodology, non-digestible oligosaccharides

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