Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 10

Search results for: Nobuyuki Kawahara

10 Chemical Kinetics and Computational Fluid-Dynamics Analysis of H2/CO/CO2/CH4 Syngas Combustion and NOx Formation in a Micro-Pilot-Ignited Supercharged Dual Fuel Engine

Authors: Ulugbek Azimov, Nearchos Stylianidis, Nobuyuki Kawahara, Eiji Tomita

Abstract:

A chemical kinetics and computational fluid-dynamics (CFD) analysis was performed to evaluate the combustion of syngas derived from biomass and coke-oven solid feedstock in a micro-pilot ignited supercharged dual-fuel engine under lean conditions. For this analysis, a new reduced syngas chemical kinetics mechanism was constructed and validated by comparing the ignition delay and laminar flame speed data with those obtained from experiments and other detail chemical kinetics mechanisms available in the literature. The reaction sensitivity analysis was conducted for ignition delay at elevated pressures in order to identify important chemical reactions that govern the combustion process. The chemical kinetics of NOx formation was analyzed for H2/CO/CO2/CH4 syngas mixtures by using counter flow burner and premixed laminar flame speed reactor models. The new mechanism showed a very good agreement with experimental measurements and accurately reproduced the effect of pressure, temperature and equivalence ratio on NOx formation. In order to identify the species important for NOx formation, a sensitivity analysis was conducted for pressures 4 bar, 10 bar and 16 bar and preheat temperature 300 K. The results show that the NOx formation is driven mostly by hydrogen based species while other species, such as N2, CO2 and CH4, have also important effects on combustion. Finally, the new mechanism was used in a multidimensional CFD simulation to predict the combustion of syngas in a micro-pilot-ignited supercharged dual-fuel engine and results were compared with experiments. The mechanism showed the closest prediction of the in-cylinder pressure and the rate of heat release (ROHR).

Keywords: syngas, chemical kinetics mechanism, internal combustion engine, NOx formation

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9 Hydrodynamics and Heat Transfer Characteristics of a Solar Thermochemical Fluidized Bed Reactor

Authors: Selvan Bellan, Koji Matsubara, Nobuyuki Gokon, Tatsuya Kodama, Hyun Seok-Cho

Abstract:

In concentrated solar thermal industry, fluidized-bed technology has been used to produce hydrogen by thermochemical two step water splitting cycles, and synthetic gas by gasification of coal coke. Recently, couple of fluidized bed reactors have been developed and tested at Niigata University, Japan, for two-step thermochemical water splitting cycles and coal coke gasification using Xe light, solar simulator. The hydrodynamic behavior of the gas-solid flow plays a vital role in the aforementioned fluidized bed reactors. Thus, in order to study the dynamics of dense gas-solid flow, a CFD-DEM model has been developed; in which the contact forces between the particles have been calculated by the spring-dashpot model, based on the soft-sphere method. Heat transfer and hydrodynamics of a solar thermochemical fluidized bed reactor filled with ceria particles have been studied numerically and experimentally for beam-down solar concentrating system. An experimental visualization of particles circulation pattern and mixing of two-tower fluidized bed system has been presented. Simulation results have been compared with experimental data to validate the CFD-DEM model. Results indicate that the model can predict the particle-fluid flow of the two-tower fluidized bed reactor. Using this model, the key operating parameters can be optimized.

Keywords: solar reactor, CFD-DEM modeling, fluidized bed, beam-down solar concentrating system

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8 Robot Navigation and Localization Based on the Rat’s Brain Signals

Authors: Endri Rama, Genci Capi, Shigenori Kawahara

Abstract:

The mobile robot ability to navigate autonomously in its environment is very important. Even though the advances in technology, robot self-localization and goal directed navigation in complex environments are still challenging tasks. In this article, we propose a novel method for robot navigation based on rat’s brain signals (Local Field Potentials). It has been well known that rats accurately and rapidly navigate in a complex space by localizing themselves in reference to the surrounding environmental cues. As the first step to incorporate the rat’s navigation strategy into the robot control, we analyzed the rats’ strategies while it navigates in a multiple Y-maze, and recorded Local Field Potentials (LFPs) simultaneously from three brain regions. Next, we processed the LFPs, and the extracted features were used as an input in the artificial neural network to predict the rat’s next location, especially in the decision-making moment, in Y-junctions. We developed an algorithm by which the robot learned to imitate the rat’s decision-making by mapping the rat’s brain signals into its own actions. Finally, the robot learned to integrate the internal states as well as external sensors in order to localize and navigate in the complex environment.

Keywords: brain-machine interface, decision-making, mobile robot, neural network

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7 Analysis of Aerodynamic Forces Acting on a Train Passing Through a Tornado

Authors: Masahiro Suzuki, Nobuyuki Okura

Abstract:

The crosswind effect on ground transportations has been extensively investigated for decades. The effect of tornado, however, has been hardly studied in spite of the fact that even heavy ground vehicles, namely, trains were overturned by tornadoes with casualties in the past. Therefore, aerodynamic effects of the tornado on the train were studied by several approaches in this study. First, an experimental facility was developed to clarify aerodynamic forces acting on a vehicle running through a tornado. Our experimental set-up consists of two apparatus. One is a tornado simulator, and the other is a moving model rig. PIV measurements showed that the tornado simulator can generate a swirling-flow field similar to those of the natural tornadoes. The flow field has the maximum tangential velocity of 7.4 m/s and the vortex core radius of 96 mm. The moving model rig makes a 1/40 scale model train of single-car/three-car unit run thorough the swirling flow with the maximum speed of 4.3 m/s. The model car has 72 pressure ports on its surface to estimate the aerodynamic forces. The experimental results show that the aerodynamic forces vary its magnitude and direction depends on the location of the vehicle in the flow field. Second, the aerodynamic forces on the train were estimated by using Rankin vortex model. The Rankin vortex model is a simple tornado model which widely used in the field of civil engineering. The estimated aerodynamic forces on the middle car were fairly good agreement with the experimental results. Effects of the vortex core radius and the path of the train on the aerodynamic forces were investigated using the Rankin vortex model. The results shows that the side and lift forces increases as the vortex core radius increases, while the yawing moment is maximum when the core radius is 0.3875 times of the car length. Third, a computational simulation was conducted to clarify the flow field around the train. The simulated results qualitatively agreed with the experimental ones.

Keywords: aerodynamic force, experimental method, tornado, train

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6 Comparison of the Indocyanine Green Dye Method versus the Combined Method of Indigo Carmine Blue Dye with Indocyanine Green Fluorescence Imaging for Sentinel Lymph Node Biopsy in Breast Conservative Therapy for Early Breast Cancer

Authors: Nobuyuki Takemoto, Ai Koyanagi, Masanori Yasuda, Hiroshi Yamamoto

Abstract:

Background: Fluorescence imaging (FI) is one of the methods to identify sentinel lymph nodes (SLNs). However, the procedure is technically complicated and requires procedural skills, as SLN biopsy must be conducted in dim light conditions. As an improved version of this method, we introduced a combined method (Combined mixed dye and fluorescence; CMF) consisting of indigo carmine blue dye and FI. The direct visualization of SLNs under shadowless surgical light conditions is facilitated by the addition of the blue dye. We compared the SLN detection rates of CMF with that of the indocyanine green (ICG) dye method (ICG-D). Methods: A total of 202 patients with stage ≤ IIA breast cancer who underwent breast conservative therapy with separate incision from January 2004 to February 2017 were reviewed. Details of the two methods are as follows: (1) ICG-D: 2ml of ICG (10mg) was used and the green-stained SLNs were resected via a 3-4cm axillary incision; (2) CMF: A combination of 1ml of ICG (5mg) and 1-3ml of indigo carmine (4-12mg) was used. Using Photodynamic Eye (PDE), a 1.5-2 cm incision was made near the point of disappearance of the fluorescence and SLNs with intermediate color of blue and green were resected. Results: There were 92 ICG-D and 110 CMF cases. CMF resulted in a significantly higher detection rate than ICG-D (96.4% vs. 83.7%; p=0.003). This difference was particularly notable in those aged ≥ 60 years (98.3% vs. 74.3%) and individuals with BMI ≥ 25kg/m2 (90.3% vs. 58.3%). Conclusion: CMF is an effective method to identify SLNs which is safe, efficient, and cost-effective. Furthermore, radiation exposure can be avoided, and it can be performed in institutes without nuclear medicine facilities. CMF achieves a high SLN identification rate, and most of this procedure is feasible under shadowless surgical light conditions. CMF can reliably perform SLN biopsy even in those aged ≥ 60 years and individuals with BMI ≥ 25 kg/m2.

Keywords: sentinel lymph node biopsy, identification rate, indocyanine green (ICG), indigocarmine, fluorescence

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5 Inhibitory Action of Fatty Acid Salts against Cladosporium cladosporioides and Dermatophagoides farinae

Authors: Yui Okuno, Mariko Era, Takayoshi Kawahara, Takahide Kanyama, Hiroshi Morita

Abstract:

Introduction: Fungus and mite are known as allergens that cause an allergic disease for example asthma bronchiale and allergic rhinitis. Cladosporium cladosporioides is one of the most often detected fungi in the indoor environment and causes pollution and deterioration. Dermatophagoides farinae is major mite allergens indoors. Therefore, the creation of antifungal agents with high safety and the antifungal effect is required. Fatty acid salts are known that have antibacterial activities. This report describes the effects of fatty acid salts against Cladosporium cladosporioides NBRC 30314 and Dermatophagoides farinae. Methods: Potassium salts of 9 fatty acids (C4:0, C6:0, C8:0, C10:0, C12:0, C14:0, C18:1, C18:2, C18:3) were prepared by mixing the fatty acid with the appropriate amount of KOH solution to a concentration of 175 mM and pH 10.5. The antifungal method, the spore suspension (3.0×104 spores/mL) was mixed with a sample of fatty acid potassium (final concentration of 175 mM). Samples were counted at 0, 10, 60, 180 min by plating (100 µL) on PDA. Fungal colonies were counted after incubation for 3 days at 30 °C. The MIC (minimum inhibitory concentration) against the fungi was determined by the two-fold dilution method. Each fatty acid salts were inoculated separately with 400 µL of C. cladosporioides at 3.0 × 104 spores/mL. The mixtures were incubated at the respective temperature for each organism for 10 min. The tubes were then contacted with the fungi incubated at 30 °C for 7 days and examined for growth of spores on PDA. The acaricidal method, twenty D. farinae adult females were used and each adult was covered completely with 2 µL fatty acid potassium for 1 min. The adults were then dried with filter paper. The filter paper was folded and fixed by two clips and kept at 25 °C and 64 % RH. Mortalities were determained 48 h after treatment under the microscope. D. farina was considered to be dead if appendages did not move when prodded with a pin. Results and Conclusions: The results show that C8K, C10K, C12K, C14K was effective to decrease survival rate (4 log unit) of the fatty acids potassium incubated time for 10 min against C. cladosporioides. C18:3K was effective to decrease 4 log unit of the fatty acids potassium incubated time for 60 min. Especially, C12K was the highest antifungal activity and the MIC of C12K was 0.7 mM. On the other hand, the fatty acids potassium showed no acaricidal effects against D. farinae. The activity of D. farinae was not adversely affected after 48 hours. These results indicate that C12K has high antifungal activity against C. cladosporioides and suggest the fatty acid potassium will be used as an antifungal agent.

Keywords: fatty acid salts, antifungal effects, acaricidal effects, Cladosporium cladosporioides, Dermatophagoides farinae

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4 Anti-Acanthamoeba Activities of Fatty Acid Salts and Fatty Acids

Authors: Manami Masuda, Mariko Era, Takayoshi Kawahara, Takahide Kanyama, Hiroshi Morita

Abstract:

Objectives: Fatty acid salts are a type of anionic surfactant and are produced from fatty acids and alkali. Moreover, fatty acid salts are known to have potent antibacterial activities. Acanthamoeba is ubiquitously distributed in the environment including sea water, fresh water, soil and even from the air. Although generally free-living, Acanthamoeba can be an opportunistic pathogen, which could cause a potentially blinding corneal infection known as Acanthamoeba keratitis. So, in this study, we evaluated the anti-amoeba activity of fatty acid salts and fatty acids to Acanthamoeba castellanii ATCC 30010. Materials and Methods: The antibacterial activity of 9 fatty acid salts (potassium butyrate (C4K), caproate (C6K), caprylate (C8K), caprate (C10K), laurate (C12K), myristate (C14K), oleate (C18:1K), linoleate (C18:2K), linolenate (C18:3K)) tested on cells of Acanthamoeba castellanii ATCC 30010. Fatty acid salts (concentration of 175 mM and pH 10.5) were prepared by mixing the fatty acid with the appropriate amount of KOH. The amoeba suspension mixed with KOH with a pH adjusted solution was used as the control. Fatty acids (concentration of 175 mM) were prepared by mixing the fatty acid with Tween 80 (20 %). The amoeba suspension mixed with Tween 80 (20 %) was used as the control. The anti-amoeba method, the amoeba suspension (3.0 × 104 cells/ml trophozoites) was mixed with the sample of fatty acid potassium (final concentration of 175 mM). Samples were incubated at 30°C, for 10 min, 60 min, and 180 min and then the viability of A. castellanii was evaluated using plankton counting chamber and trypan blue stainings. The minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) against Acanthamoeba was determined using the two-fold dilution method. The MIC was defined as the minimal anti-amoeba concentration that inhibited visible amoeba growth following incubation (180 min). Results: C8K, C10K, and C12K were the anti-amoeba effect of 4 log-unit (99.99 % growth suppression of A. castellanii) incubated time for 180 min against A. castellanii at 175mM. After the amoeba, the suspension was mixed with C10K or C12K, destroying the cell membrane had been observed. Whereas, the pH adjusted control solution did not exhibit any effect even after 180 min of incubation with A. castellanii. Moreover, C6, C8, and C18:3 were the anti-amoeba effect of 4 log-unit incubated time for 60 min. C4 and C18:2 exhibited a 4-log reduction after 180 min incubation. Furthermore, the minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) was determined. The MIC of C10K, C12K and C4 were 2.7 mM. These results indicate that C10K, C12K and C4 have high anti-amoeba activity against A. castellanii and suggest C10K, C12K and C4 have great potential for antimi-amoeba agents.

Keywords: Fatty acid salts, anti-amoeba activities, Acanthamoeba, fatty acids

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3 Effects of Fatty Acid Salts and Spices on Dermatophagoides farinae

Authors: Yumeho Obata, Mariko Era, Takayoshi Kawahara, Takahide Kanyama, Hiroshi Morita

Abstract:

Dermatophagoides farinae is major mite allergens in indoors. D. farinae is often swarm over powder products (e.g. wheat flour), because it feeds on starch or protein that are included in them. Eating powder products which are mixed D.farinae causes various allergic symptoms. Therefore, the creation of food additive agents with high safety and control of mite effect is required. Fatty acid salts and spices are known that have pesticidal activities. This study describes the effects of fatty acid salts and spices against Dermatophagoides farinae. Materials and Methods: Potassium salts of 9 fatty acids (C4:0, C6:0, C8:0, C10:0, C12:0, C14:0, C18:1, C18:2, C18:3) were prepared by mixing the fatty acid with the appropriate amount of KOH solution to a concentration of 175 mM and pH 10.5. C12Cu and C12Zn were selected as other fatty acid salts. Cayenne pepper, habanero, Japanese pepper, mustard, jalapeno pepper, curry aroma and cinnamon were selected as spices. D. farina, have been cultured in laboratory. To rear the mites, double-soled dishes containing of sterilized food were put on the big plastic container (30.0 × 20.0 × 20.0cm) which had 100% ammonium nitrate solution in the bottom. Plastic container was placed on incubator at 25 °C and 64 % relative humidity (RH) under dark condition. Sterilized food composed of dried bonito flakes and dried yeast (Ebios), 1:1 by weight. The antiproliferative method, sample and medium culture were mixed in double-soled dish and kept at 25 °C and 64 % RH. Decrease rates were determined 1 week and 4 week after treatment under microscope. D. farina was considered to be dead if appendages did not move when prodded with a pin. Results and Conclusions: The results show that the fatty acids potassium showed no antiproliferative effects against D. farinae. On the other hand, Japanese pepper, mustard, curry aroma and cinnamon were effective to decrease propagative rate (over 80 %) after treatment for 1 week against D. farina. Japanese pepper, curry aroma and cinnamon were effective to decrease propagative rate (approximately 100 %) after treatment for 4 weeks against D. farina. Especially, Japanese pepper and cinnamon showed the fasted and the most consecutive antiproliferative effects. These results indicate that Japanese pepper and cinnamon have high antiproliferative effects against D. farina and suggest spices will be used as a food additive agent.

Keywords: fatty acid salts, spices, antiproliferative effects, dermatophagoides farinae

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2 Application of Fatty Acid Salts for Antimicrobial Agents in Koji-Muro

Authors: Aya Tanaka, Mariko Era, Shiho Sakai, Takayoshi Kawahara, Takahide Kanyama, Hiroshi Morita

Abstract:

Objectives: Aspergillus niger and Aspergillus oryzae are used as koji fungi in the spot of the brewing. Since koji-muro (room for making koji) was a low level of airtightness, microbial contamination has long been a concern to the alcoholic beverage production. Therefore, we focused on the fatty acid salt which is the main component of soap. Fatty acid salts have been reported to show some antibacterial and antifungal activity. So this study examined antimicrobial activities against Aspergillus and Bacillus spp. This study aimed to find the effectiveness of the fatty acid salt in koji-muro as antimicrobial agents. Materials & Methods: A. niger NBRC 31628, A. oryzae NBRC 5238, A. oryzae (Akita Konno store) and Bacillus subtilis NBRC 3335 were chosen as tested. Nine fatty acid salts including potassium butyrate (C4K), caproate (C6K), caprylate (C8K), caprate (C10K), laurate (C12K), myristate (C14K), oleate (C18:1K), linoleate (C18:2K) and linolenate (C18:3K) at 350 mM and pH 10.5 were used as antimicrobial activity. FASs and spore suspension were prepared in plastic tubes. The spore suspension of each fungus (3.0×104 spores/mL) or the bacterial suspension (3.0×105 CFU/mL) was mixed with each of the fatty acid salts (final concentration of 175 mM). The mixtures were incubated at 25 ℃. Samples were counted at 0, 10, 60, and 180 min by plating (100 µL) on potato dextrose agar. Fungal and bacterial colonies were counted after incubation for 1 or 2 days at 30 ℃. The MIC (minimum inhibitory concentration) is defined as the lowest concentration of drug sufficient for inhibiting visible growth of spore after 10 min of incubation. MICs against fungi and bacteria were determined using the two-fold dilution method. Each fatty acid salt was separately inoculated with 400 µL of Aspergillus spp. or B. subtilis NBRC 3335 at 3.0 × 104 spores/mL or 3.0 × 105 CFU/mL. Results: No obvious change was observed in tested fatty acid salts against A. niger and A. oryzae. However, C12K was the antibacterial effect of 5 log-unit incubated time for 10 min against B. subtilis. Thus, C12K suppressed 99.999 % of bacterial growth. Besides, C10K was the antibacterial effect of 5 log-unit incubated time for 180 min against B. subtilis. C18:1K, C18:2K and C18:3K was the antibacterial effect of 5 log-unit incubated time for 10 min against B. subtilis. However, compared to saturated fatty acid salts to unsaturated fatty acid salts, saturated fatty acid salts are lower cost. These results suggest C12K has potential in the field of koji-muro. It is necessary to evaluate the antimicrobial activity against other fungi and bacteria, in the future.

Keywords: Aspergillus, antimicrobial, fatty acid salts, koji-muro

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1 Antimicrobial Activity of Fatty Acid Salts against Microbes for Food Safety

Authors: Aya Tanaka, Mariko Era, Manami Masuda, Yui Okuno, Takayoshi Kawahara, Takahide Kanyama, Hiroshi Morita

Abstract:

Objectives— Fungi and bacteria are present in a wide range of natural environments. They are breed in the foods such as vegetables and fruit, causing corruption and deterioration of these foods in some cases. Furthermore, some species of fungi and bacteria are known to cause food intoxication or allergic reactions in some individuals. To prevent fungal and bacterial contamination, various fungicides and bactericidal have been developed that inhibit fungal and bacterial growth. Fungicides and bactericides must show high antifungal and antibacterial activity, sustainable activity, and a high degree of safety. Therefore, we focused on the fatty acid salt which is the main component of soap. We focused on especially C10K and C12K. This study aimed to find the effectiveness of the fatty acid salt as antimicrobial agents for food safety. Materials and Methods— Cladosporium cladosporioides NBRC 30314, Penicillium pinophilum NBRC 6345, Aspergillus oryzae (Akita Konno store), Rhizopus oryzae NBRC 4716, Fusarium oxysporum NBRC 31631, Escherichia coli NBRC 3972, Bacillus subtilis NBRC 3335, Staphylococcus aureus NBRC 12732, Pseudomonas aenuginosa NBRC 13275 and Serratia marcescens NBRC 102204 were chosen as tested fungi and bacteria. Hartmannella vermiformis NBRC 50599 and Acanthamoeba castellanii NBRC 30010 were chosen as tested amoeba. Nine fatty acid salts including potassium caprate (C10K) and laurate (C12K) at 350 mM and pH 10.5 were used as antifungal activity. The spore suspension of each fungus (3.0×10⁴ spores/mL) or the bacterial suspension (3.0×10⁵ or 3.0×10⁶ or 3.0×10⁷ CFU/mL) was mixed with each of the fatty acid salts (final concentration of 175 mM). Samples were counted at 0, 10, 60, and 180 min by plating (100 µL) on potato dextrose agar or nutrient agar. Fungal and bacterial colonies were counted after incubation for 1 or 2 days at 30 °C. Results— C10K was antifungal activity of 4 log-unit incubated time for 10 min against fungi other than A. oryzae. C12K was antifungal activity of 4 log-unit incubated time for 10 min against fungi other than P. pinophilum and A. oryzae. C10K and C12K did not show high anti-yeast activity. C10K was antibacterial activity of 6 or 7 log-unit incubated time for 10 min against bacteria other than B. subtilis. C12K was antibacterial activity of 5 to 7 log-unit incubated time for 10 min against bacteria other than S. marcescens. C12K was anti-amoeba activity of 4 log-unit incubated time for 10 min against H. vermiformis. These results suggest C10K and C12K have potential in the field of food safety.

Keywords: food safety, microbes, antimicrobial, fatty acid salts

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