Commenced in January 2007
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Edition: International
Paper Count: 12

Search results for: Kanika Gounder

12 Impact of Urban Densification on Travel Behaviour: Case of Surat and Udaipur, India

Authors: Darshini Mahadevia, Kanika Gounder, Saumya Lathia


Cities, an outcome of natural growth and migration, are ever-expanding due to urban sprawl. In the Global South, urban areas are experiencing a switch from public transport to private vehicles, coupled with intensified urban agglomeration, leading to frequent longer commutes by automobiles. This increase in travel distance and motorized vehicle kilometres lead to unsustainable cities. To achieve the nationally pledged GHG emission mitigation goal, the government is prioritizing a modal shift to low-carbon transport modes like mass transit and paratransit. Mixed land-use and urban densification are crucial for the economic viability of these projects. Informed by desktop assessment of mobility plans and in-person primary surveys, the paper explores the challenges around urban densification and travel patterns in two Indian cities of contrasting nature- Surat, a metropolitan industrial city with a 5.9 million population and a very compact urban form, and Udaipur, a heritage city attracting large international tourists’ footfall, with limited scope for further densification. Dense, mixed-use urban areas often improve access to basic services and economic opportunities by reducing distances and enabling people who don't own personal vehicles to reach them on foot/ cycle. But residents travelling on different modes end up contributing to similar trip lengths, highlighting the non-uniform distribution of land-uses and lack of planned transport infrastructure in the city and the urban-peri urban networks. Additionally, it is imperative to manage these densities to reduce negative externalities like congestion, air/noise pollution, lack of public spaces, loss of livelihood, etc. The study presents a comparison of the relationship between transport systems with the built form in both cities. The paper concludes with recommendations for managing densities in urban areas along with promoting low-carbon transport choices like improved non-motorized transport and public transport infrastructure and minimizing personal vehicle usage in the Global South.

Keywords: India, low-carbon transport, travel behaviour, trip length, urban densification

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11 Efficient Utilization of Biomass for Bioenergy in Environmental Control

Authors: Subir Kundu, Sukhendra Singh, Sumedha Ojha, Kanika Kundu


The continuous decline of petroleum and natural gas reserves and non linear rise of oil price has brought about a realisation of the need for a change in our perpetual dependence on the fossil fuel. A day to day increased consumption of crude and petroleum products has made a considerable impact on our foreign exchange reserves. Hence, an alternate resource for the conversion of energy (both liquid and gas) is essential for the substitution of conventional fuels. Biomass is the alternate solution for the present scenario. Biomass can be converted into both liquid as well as gaseous fuels and other feedstocks for the industries.

Keywords: bioenergy, biomass conversion, biorefining, efficient utilisation of night soil

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10 Synthesis and Thermoluminescence Study of Nanocrystalline Radiation Dosimeter CaSO₄:Ce/Sm/Dy

Authors: Anant Pandey, Kanika Sharma, Vibha Chopra, Shaila Bahl, Pratik Kumar, S. P. Lochab, Birendra Singh


This paper reports the thermoluminescence (TL) properties of nanocrystalline CaSO₄ activated by Ce, Sm, and Dy. TL properties are investigated by chiefly changing the dopant element and also by varying the concentration of the dopant elements (from 0.05 mol % to 0.5 mol %) so as to establish the optimized dopant concentration for each of the activators. The method of salt preparation used is the typical chemical co-precipitation method and the technique used for characterization of the prepared samples is the X-Ray Diffraction (XRD) technique. Further, the phosphors are irradiated with gamma radiation from Co-60 (1.25 MeV) source (dose range- 30 Gy to 500 Gy). The optimized concentration (vis-a-vis TL peak intensity) of activator for CaSO₄:Ce is found to be 0.2 mol %, for CaSO₄:Sm it is 0.1 mol % and for CaSO₄:Dy it is 0.2 mol %. Further, the primary study of the TL response curves for all the three phosphors confirms linearity in the studied dose range (i.e., 30 Gy to 500 Gy). Finally, CaSO₄:Dy was also studied for its energy dependence property which plays an important role in defining the utility of a phosphor for dosimetric applications. The range of doses used for the energy dependence study was from 30 Gy to 500 Gy from Cs-137 (0.662 MeV). The nano-phosphors showed potential to be used as radiation dosimeter in the studied range of gamma radiation and thus must be studied for a wider range of doses.

Keywords: gamma radiation, nanocrystalline, radiation dosimetry, thermoluminescence

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9 Seasonal Variability of Aerosol Optical Properties and Their Radiative Effects over Indo-Gangetic Plain in India

Authors: Kanika Taneja, V. K. Soni, S. D. Attri, Kafeel Ahmad, Shamshad Ahmad


Aerosols represent an important component of earth-atmosphere system and have a profound impact on the global and regional climate. With the growing population and urbanization, the aerosol load in the atmosphere over the Indian region is found to be increasing. Several studies have reported that the aerosol optical depth over the northern part of India is higher as compared to the southern part. The northern India along the Indo-Gangetic plain is often influenced with dust transported from the Thar Desert in northwestern India and from Arabian Peninsula during the pre-monsoon season. Seasonal variations in aerosol optical and radiative properties were examined using data retrieved from ground based multi-wavelength Prede Sun/sky radiometer (POM-02) over Delhi, Rohtak, Jodhpur and Varanasi for the period April 2011-April 2013. These stations are part of the Skynet-India network of India Meteorological Department. The Sun/sky radiometer (POM-02) has advantage over other instruments that it can be calibrated on-site. These aerosol optical properties retrieved from skyradiometer observations are further used to analyze the Direct Aerosol Radiative Forcing (DARF) over the study locations.

Keywords: aerosol optical properties, indo- gangetic plain, radiative forcing, sky radiometer

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8 Investigating Nanocrystalline CaF2:Tm for Carbon Beam and Gamma Radiation Dosimetry

Authors: Kanika Sharma, Shaila Bahl, Birendra Singh, Pratik Kumar, S. P. Lochab, A. Pandey


In the present investigation, initially nano-particles of CaF2 were prepared by the chemical co-precipitation method and later the prepared salt was activated by thulium (0.1 mol%) using the combustion technique. The final product was characterized and confirmed by X-Ray diffraction (XRD) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). Further, the thermoluminescence (TL) properties of the nanophosphor were studied by irradiating it with 1.25 MeV of gamma radiation and 65 MeV of carbon (C6+) ion beam. For gamma rays, two prominent TL peaks were observed with a low temperature peak at around 1070C and a high temperature peak at around 1570C. Furthermore, the nanophosphor maintained a linear TL response for the entire range of studied doses i.e. 10 Gy to 2000 Gy for both the temperature peaks. Moreover, when the nanophosphor was irradiated with 65 MeV of C6+ ion beam the shape and structure of the glow curves remained spectacularly similar and the nanophosphor displayed a linear TL response for the full range of studied fluences i.e. 5*1010 ions/cm2 to 1 *1012 ions/ cm2. Finally, various tests like reproducibility test and batch homogeneity were also carried out to define the final product. Thus, co-precipitation method followed by combustion technique was successful in effectively producing dosimetric grade CaF2:Tm for dosimetry of gamma as well as carbon (C6+) beam.

Keywords: gamma radiation, ion beam, nanocrystalline, radiation dosimetry

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7 Effect of Biostimulants on Downstream Processing of Endophytic Fungi Hosted in Aromatic Plant, Ocimum basicilium

Authors: Kanika Chowdhary, Satyawati Sharma


Endophytic microbes are hosted inside plants in a symbiotic and hugely benefitting relationship. Exploring agriculturally beneficial endophytes is quite a prospective field of research. In the present work fungal endophytes associated with aromatic plant Ocimum basicilium L. were investigated for biocontrol potential. The anti-plant pathogenic activity of fungal endophytes was tested against causal agent of stem rot Sclerotinia sclerotiorum. 75 endophytic fungi were recovered through culture-dependent approach. Fungal identification was performed both microscopically and by rDNA ITS sequencing. Curvuaria lunata (Sb-6) and Colletotrichum lindemuthianum (Sb-8) inhibited 86% and 72% mycelia growth of S. sclerotinia on Sabouraud dextrose agar medium at 7.4 pH. Small-scale fermentation was carried out on sterilised oatmeal grain medium. In another set of experiment, fungi were grown in oatmeal grain medium amended with certain biostimulants such as aqueous seaweed extract (10% v/w); methanolic seaweed extract (5% v/w); cow urine (20% v/w); biochar (10% w/w) in triplicate along with control of each to ascertain the degree of metabolic difference and anti-plant pathogenic activity induced. Phytochemically extracts of both the fungal isolates showed the presence of flavanoids, phenols, tannins, alkaloids and terpenoids. Ethylacetate extract of C. lunata and C. lindemuthianum suppressed S. sclerotinia conidial germination at IC50 values of 0.514± 0.02 and 0.913± 0.04 mg/ml. Therefore, fungal endophytes of O. basicilium are highly promising bio-resource agent, which can be developed further for sustainable agriculture.

Keywords: endophytic fungi, ocimum basicilium, sclerotinia sclerotiorum, biostimulants

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6 Thermoluminescence Characteristic of Nanocrystalline BaSO4 Doped with Europium

Authors: Kanika S. Raheja, A. Pandey, Shaila Bahl, Pratik Kumar, S. P. Lochab


The subject of undertaking for this paper is the study of BaSO4 nanophosphor doped with Europium in which mainly the concentration of the rare earth impurity Eu (0.05, 0.1, 0.2, 0.5, and 1 mol %) has been varied. A comparative study of the thermoluminescence(TL) properties of the given nanophosphor has also been done using a well-known standard dosimetry material i.e. TLD-100.Firstly, a number of samples were prepared successfully by the chemical co-precipitation method. The whole lot was then compared to a well established standard material (TLD-100) for its TL sensitivity property. BaSO4:Eu ( 0.2 mol%) showed the highest sensitivity out of the lot. It was also found that when compared to the standard TLD-100, BaSo4:Eu (0.2mol%) showed surprisingly high sensitivity for a large range of doses. The TL response curve for all prepared samples has also been studied over a wide range of doses i.e 10Gy to 2kGy for gamma radiation. Almost all the samples of BaSO4:Eu showed a remarkable linearity for a broad range of doses, which is a characteristic feature of a fine TL dosimeter. The graph remained linear even beyond 1kGy for gamma radiation. Thus, the given nanophosphor has been successfully optimised for the concentration of the dopant material to achieve its highest TL sensitivity. Further, the comparative study with the standard material revealed that the current optimised sample shows an astonishingly better TL sensitivity and a phenomenal linear response curve for an incredibly wide range of doses for gamma radiation (Co-60) as compared to the standard TLD-100, which makes the current optimised BaSo4:Eu quite promising as an efficient gamma radiation dosimeter. Lastly, the present phosphor has been optimised for its annealing temperature to acquire the best results while also studying its fading and reusability properties.

Keywords: gamma radiation, nanoparticles, radiation dosimetry, thermoluminescence

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5 Impact of Unusual Dust Event on Regional Climate in India

Authors: Kanika Taneja, V. K. Soni, Kafeel Ahmad, Shamshad Ahmad


A severe dust storm generated from a western disturbance over north Pakistan and adjoining Afghanistan affected the north-west region of India between May 28 and 31, 2014, resulting in significant reductions in air quality and visibility. The air quality of the affected region degraded drastically. PM10 concentration peaked at a very high value of around 1018 μgm-3 during dust storm hours of May 30, 2014 at New Delhi. The present study depicts aerosol optical properties monitored during the dust days using ground based multi-wavelength Sky radiometer over the National Capital Region of India. High Aerosol Optical Depth (AOD) at 500 nm was observed as 1.356 ± 0.19 at New Delhi while Angstrom exponent (Alpha) dropped to 0.287 on May 30, 2014. The variation in the Single Scattering Albedo (SSA) and real n(λ) and imaginary k(λ) parts of the refractive index indicated that the dust event influences the optical state to be more absorbing. The single scattering albedo, refractive index, volume size distribution and asymmetry parameter (ASY) values suggested that dust aerosols were predominant over the anthropogenic aerosols in the urban environment of New Delhi. The large reduction in the radiative flux at the surface level caused significant cooling at the surface. Direct Aerosol Radiative Forcing (DARF) was calculated using a radiative transfer model during the dust period. A consistent increase in surface cooling was evident, ranging from -31 Wm-2 to -82 Wm-2 and an increase in heating of the atmosphere from 15 Wm-2 to 92 Wm-2 and -2 Wm-2 to 10 Wm-2 at top of the atmosphere.

Keywords: aerosol optical properties, dust storm, radiative transfer model, sky radiometer

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4 Study of Radiation Response in Lactobacillus Species

Authors: Kanika Arora, Madhu Bala


The small intestine epithelium is highly sensitive and major targets of ionizing radiation. Radiation causes gastrointestinal toxicity either by direct deposition of energy or indirectly (inflammation or bystander effects) generating free radicals and reactive oxygen species. Oxidative stress generated as a result of radiation causes active inflammation within the intestinal mucosa leading to structural and functional impairment of gut epithelial barrier. As a result, there is a loss of tolerance to normal dietary antigens and commensal flora together with exaggerated response to pathogens. Dysbiosis may therefore thought to play a role in radiation enteropathy and can contribute towards radiation induced bowel toxicity. Lactobacilli residing in the gut shares a long conjoined evolutionary history with their hosts and by doing so these organisms have developed an intimate and complex symbiotic relationships. The objective behind this study was to look for the strains with varying resistance to ionizing radiation and to see whether the niche of the bacteria is playing any role in radiation resistance property of bacteria. In this study, we have isolated the Lactobacillus spp. from probiotic preparation and murine gastrointestinal tract, both of which were supposed to be the important source for its isolation. Biochemical characterization did not show a significant difference in the properties, while a significant preference was observed in carbohydrate utilization capacity by the isolates. Effect of ionizing radiations induced by Co60 gamma radiation (10 Gy) on lactobacilli cells was investigated. A cellular survival curve versus absorbed doses was determined. Radiation resistance studies showed that the response of isolates towards cobalt-60 gamma radiation differs from each other and significant decrease in survival was observed in a dose-dependent manner. Thus the present study revealed that the property of radioresistance in Lactobacillus depends upon the source from where they have been isolated.

Keywords: dysbiosis, lactobacillus, mitigation, radiation

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3 A Correlational Study between Sexual Awareness, Behaviour and Sources of Sexual Knowledge among Youth in Context of Bihar

Authors: Kanika Naresh Singh, Uday Shankar


Background: Human behaviours are influenced by drives. Sexual drive is one of them. Education regarding sexual behaviour plays a great role in shaping one’s attitude towards it. These days after attaining the age of puberty, adolescents are confused and feel shy to talk about it. In order to get information, they refer to various types of sources and these sources play a greater role in spreading awareness in the mass adolescent population. Sometimes it also leads to the building of myths and misconceptions. Due to increasing incidences of HIV/AIDS, RTIs/STIs and teenage pregnancies, there is a rising need to impart sex education. Aim: The aim of this research was to study the level of sexual awareness among the youth of Bihar and also study their sexual behaviour and sources of influence. It also aims to study the correlation between sexual awareness, behaviour and sources of sexual knowledge among youth in Bihar. Methods: The sample size for the project was 50 youth consisting of both boys and girls, in between the age group of 18 to 23 years from urban and semi-urban areas. The purposive sampling method was used in the research. The tools used were the Sexual Awareness Questionnaire and Sexual Behavior and Sources of Influence (SBSI) scale. The sexual Awareness Questionnaire was developed by Snell, having 35 items. A socio-demographic data sheet was also used. Results: The youth had poor sexual awareness. Internet and Friends were found to be the major source for gathering information. The youth of Bihar were less inclined towards resolving their doubts with their parents. There was a positive correlation between sexual awareness, behaviour and sources of knowledge. Conclusion: The youth of Bihar has poor sexual knowledge. Internet and Friends are major sources of information. Sex Education should be promoted as suggested by various institutions like World Health Organization United Nations. Psychiatrists and psychologists have a key leadership role in introducing these potentially emotionally challenging issues to the youth with consideration of psychosocial and cultural factors.

Keywords: sexual awareness, sexual behavior, sources of influence, youths, Bihar, India

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2 Cross-Sectional Analysis of Sustainability Activities in the Pharmaceutical Companies

Authors: Kanika Saxena, Sunita Balani


Purpose - The aim of the study is to compare the reported sustainability activities in areas of emission, water management and gender equality, currently undertaken by the seven major pharmaceutical companies. Methodology: The published corporate sustainability activity reports for the year 2017 for seven pharmaceutical companies have been studied. The two main criteria for the inclusion of pharmaceutical companies in this study are that they are globally recognized and active in the field of sustainability reporting. Company’s actions and initiatives have been grouped under three categories: (i) Emissions (ii) Water management (iii) Gender Equality in terms of employee workforce. Findings: Based on the sustainability reports, quantification and grading of the companies showed interesting results. Johnson & Johnson and Bayer are leading their activities under emissions and water management categories. The number of activities under emission and water management in case of Eli Lily, Roche, Sanofi, Pfizer and GlaxoSmithKline were 19, 16, 16, 11 and 6 respectively. Johnson & Johnson and Eli Lily are leading in taking the initiatives to curb the problem of emissions as compared with other 5 companies. Under the category of gender equality in terms of employee workforce, Eli Lily is leading the group of sampled companies with 47% of women employee workforce globally followed by Sanofi with 46.2% (42.2% of managers) female employees. It has also been observed that in some of the reports, gender diversification in the workforce has not been mentioned though the total number of employees were mentioned. Conclusion: This study could serve as the informative material for future in-depth industry-specific studies in order to find out the participation of the pharmaceutical companies in the reporting of the sustainability activities especially in reference to emission, water management and gender equality in the workforce. In addition to it, this can be helpful as a reference point for other companies in the pharmaceutical sector who are yet to explore the field of sustainability initiatives and reporting. Due to the limited scope of this study, only seven major players of the pharmaceutical sector who are active in the field of sustainability have been considered.

Keywords: emission, gender equality workforce, pharmaceutical, sustainability, water management

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1 Biofilm Text Classifiers Developed Using Natural Language Processing and Unsupervised Learning Approach

Authors: Kanika Gupta, Ashok Kumar


Biofilms are dense, highly hydrated cell clusters that are irreversibly attached to a substratum, to an interface or to each other, and are embedded in a self-produced gelatinous matrix composed of extracellular polymeric substances. Research in biofilm field has become very significant, as biofilm has shown high mechanical resilience and resistance to antibiotic treatment and constituted as a significant problem in both healthcare and other industry related to microorganisms. The massive information both stated and hidden in the biofilm literature are growing exponentially therefore it is not possible for researchers and practitioners to automatically extract and relate information from different written resources. So, the current work proposes and discusses the use of text mining techniques for the extraction of information from biofilm literature corpora containing 34306 documents. It is very difficult and expensive to obtain annotated material for biomedical literature as the literature is unstructured i.e. free-text. Therefore, we considered unsupervised approach, where no annotated training is necessary and using this approach we developed a system that will classify the text on the basis of growth and development, drug effects, radiation effects, classification and physiology of biofilms. For this, a two-step structure was used where the first step is to extract keywords from the biofilm literature using a metathesaurus and standard natural language processing tools like Rapid Miner_v5.3 and the second step is to discover relations between the genes extracted from the whole set of biofilm literature using pubmed.mineR_v1.0.11. We used unsupervised approach, which is the machine learning task of inferring a function to describe hidden structure from 'unlabeled' data, in the above-extracted datasets to develop classifiers using WinPython-64 bit_v3.5.4.0Qt5 and R studio_v0.99.467 packages which will automatically classify the text by using the mentioned sets. The developed classifiers were tested on a large data set of biofilm literature which showed that the unsupervised approach proposed is promising as well as suited for a semi-automatic labeling of the extracted relations. The entire information was stored in the relational database which was hosted locally on the server. The generated biofilm vocabulary and genes relations will be significant for researchers dealing with biofilm research, making their search easy and efficient as the keywords and genes could be directly mapped with the documents used for database development.

Keywords: biofilms literature, classifiers development, text mining, unsupervised learning approach, unstructured data, relational database

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