Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 21

Search results for: Rashad Al-Hindi

21 Synthesis of New 2-(Methylthio) Benzo[g]-[1,2,4] Triazolo [1,5a] Quinazolines

Authors: Rashad A. Al-Salahi, Mohamed S. Marzouk

Abstract:

Aiming to the synthesis of bioactive triazoloquinazolines, a new series of 2-(methylthio)benzo [g]-[1,2,4] triazolo [1,5-a] quinazolin-5(4H)-ones was synthesized from 2-(methylthio)benzo [g]-[1,2,4] triazolo [1,5-a] quinazolin-5(4H)-one. All synthesized derivatives based on N-alkylation and chlorination of the parent compound and its salfonyl derivative. The success of the reactions was proved by NMR, IR, and HREI-MS analyses for all products.

Keywords: triazoloquinazoline, alkylation, thionation, quinazolin

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20 Ankh Key Broadband Array Antenna for 5G Applications

Authors: Noha M. Rashad, W. Swelam, M. H. Abd ElAzeem

Abstract:

A simple design of array antenna is presented in this paper, supporting millimeter wave applications which can be used in short range wireless communications such as 5G applications. This design enhances the use of V-band, according to IEEE standards, as the antenna works in the 70 GHz band with bandwidth more than 11 GHz and peak gain more than 13 dBi. The design is simulated using different numerical techniques achieving a very good agreement.

Keywords: 5G technology, array antenna, microstrip, millimeter wave

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19 Effects of Flexible Flat Feet on Electromyographic Activity of Erector Spinae and Multifidus

Authors: Abdallah Mohamed Kamel Mohamed Ali, Samah Saad Zahran, Mohamed Hamed Rashad

Abstract:

Background: Flexible flatfoot (FFF) has been considered as a risk factor for several lower limb injuries and mechanical low back pain. This was attributed to the dysfunction of the lumbopelvic-hip complex musculature. Objective: To investigate the influence of FFF on electromyographic activities of erector spinae and multifidus. Methods: A cross-section study was held between an FFF group (20 subjects) and a normal foot group (20 subjects). A surface electromyography was used to assess the electromyographic activity of erector spinae and multifidus. Group differences were assessed by the T-test. Results: There was a significant increase in EMG activities of erector spinae and multifidus in the FFF group compared with the normal group. Conclusion: There is an increase in EMG activities in erector spinae and multifidus in FFF subjects compared with normal subjects.

Keywords: electromyography, flatfoot, low back pain, paraspinal muscles

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18 Physicochemical Studies and Screening of Aflatoxins and Pesticide Residues in Some 'Honey Pastes' Marketed in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia

Authors: Rashad Al-Hindi

Abstract:

The study aimed at investigating and screening of some contaminants in some honey-based products. Sixty-nine 'honey paste' samples marketed in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, were subjected to physicochemical studies and screening of aflatoxins and pesticide residues. The physicochemical parameters studied were mainly: moisture content, total sugars, total ash, total nitrogen, fibres, total acidity as citric acid and pH. These parameters were investigated using standard methods of analysis. Mycotoxins (aflatoxins) and pesticide residues were by an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) according to official methods. Results revealed that mean values of the examined criteria were: 15.44±0.36%; 74±4.30%; 0.40±0.062%; 0.22±0.05%; 6.93±1.30%; 2.53±0.161 mmol/kg; 4.10±0.158, respectively. Overall results proved that all tested honey pastes samples were free from mycotoxins (aflatoxins) and pesticide residues. Therefore, we conclude that 'honey pastes' marketed in Jeddah city, Saudi Arabia were safe for human consumption.

Keywords: aflatoxins, honey mixtures, pesticide residues, physicochemical

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17 Potential Probiotic Bacteria Isolated from Dairy Products of Saudi Arabia

Authors: Rashad Al-Hindi

Abstract:

The aims of the study were to isolate and identify potential probiotic lactic acid bacteria due to their therapeutic and food preservation importance. Sixty-three suspected lactic acid bacteria (LAB) strains were isolated from thirteen different raw milk and fermented milk product samples of various animal origins manufactured indigenously in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia using de Man, Rogosa and Sharpe (MRS) agar medium and various incubation conditions. The identification of forty-six selected LAB strains was performed using molecular methods (16S rDNA gene sequencing). The LAB counts in certain samples were higher under microaerobic incubation conditions than under anaerobic conditions. The identified LAB belonged to the following genera: Enterococcus (16 strains), Lactobacillus (9 strains), Weissella (10 strains), Streptococcus (8 strains) and Lactococcus (3 strains), constituting 34.78%, 19.57%, 21.74%, 17.39% and 6.52% of the suspected isolates, respectively. This study noted that the raw milk and traditional fermented milk products of Saudi Arabia, especially stirred yogurt (Laban) made from camel milk, could be rich in LAB. The obtained LAB strains in this study will be tested for their probiotic potentials in another ongoing study.

Keywords: dairy, LAB, probiotic, Saudi Arabia

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16 Biodiversity of Pathogenic and Toxigenic Fungi Associated with Maize Grains Sampled across Egypt

Authors: Yasser Shabana, Khaled Ghoneem, Nehal Arafat, Younes Rashad, Dalia Aseel, Bruce Fitt, Aiming Qi, Benjamine Richard

Abstract:

Providing food for more than 100 million people is one of Egypt's main challenges facing development. The overall goal is to formulate strategies to enhance food security in light of population growth. Two hundred samples of maize grains from 25 governates were collected. For the detection of seed-borne fungi, the deep-freezing blotter method (DFB) and washing method (ISTA 1999) were used. A total of 41 fungal species was recovered from maize seed samples. Weather data from 30 stations scattered all over Egypt and covering the major maize growing areas were obtained. Canonical correspondence analysis of data for the obtained fungal genera with temperature, relative humidity, precipitation, wind speed, or solar radiation revealed that relative humidity, temperature and wind speed were the most influential weather variables.

Keywords: biodiversity, climate change, maize, seed-borne fungi

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15 Clinical and Molecular Characterization of Mycoplasmosis in Sheep in Egypt

Authors: Walid Mousa, Mohamed Nayel, Ahmed Zaghawa, Akram Salama, Ahmed El-Sify, Hesham Rashad, Dina El-Shafey

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Mycoplasmosis in small ruminants constitutes a serious contagious problem in smallholders causing severe economic losses worldwide. This study was conducted to determine the clinical, Minimum Inhibitory Concentration (MIC) and molecular characterization of Mycoplasma species associated in sheep breeding herds in Menoufiya governorate, Egypt. Out of the examination of 400 sheep, 104 (26%) showed respiratory manifestations, nasal discharges, cough and conjunctivitis with systemic body reaction. Meanwhile, out of these examined sheep, only 56 (14%) were positive for mycoplasma isolation onto PPLO(Pleuropneumonia-like organisms) specific medium. The MIC for evaluating the efficacy of sensitivity of Mycoplasma isolates against different antibiotics groups revealed that both the Linospectin and Tylosin with 2ug, 0.25ug/ml concentration were the most effective antibiotics for Mycoplasma isolates. The application of PCR was the rapid, specific and sensitive molecular approach for detection of M. ovipneumoniae, and M. arginine at 390 and 326 bp, respectively, in all tested isolates. In conclusion, the diagnosis of Mycoplsamosis in sheep is important to achieve effective control measures and minimizing the disease dissemination among sheep herds.

Keywords: MIC, mycoplasmosis, PCR, sheep

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14 Sustainability of Carbon Nanotube-Reinforced Concrete

Authors: Rashad Al Araj, Adil K. Tamimi

Abstract:

Concrete, despite being one of the most produced materials in the world, still has weaknesses and drawbacks. Significant concern of the cementitious materials in structural applications is their quasi-brittle behavior, which causes the material to crack and lose its durability. One of the very recently proposed mitigations for this problem is the implementation of nanotechnology in the concrete mix by adding carbon nanotubes (CNTs) to it. CNTs can enhance the critical mechanical properties of concrete as a structural material. Thus, this paper demonstrates a state-of-the-art review of reinforcing concrete with CNTs, emphasizing on the structural performance. It also goes over the properties of CNTs alone, the present methods and costs associated with producing them, the possible special applications of concretes reinforced with CNTs, the key challenges and drawbacks that this new technology still encounters, and the most reliable practices and methodologies to produce CNT-reinforced concrete in the lab. This work has shown that the addition of CNTs to the concrete mix in percentages as low as 0.25% weight of cement could increase the flexural strength and toughness of concrete by more than 45% and 25%, respectively, and enhance other durability-related properties, given that an effective dispersion of CNTs in the cementitious mix is achieved. Since nano reinforcement for cementitious materials is a new technology, many challenges have to be tackled before it becomes practiced at the mass level.

Keywords: sustainability, carbon nano tube, microsilica, concrete

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13 Effect of Preparation Temperature on Producing Graphene Oxide by Chemical Oxidation Approach

Authors: Rashad Al-Gaashani, Muataz A. Atieh

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In this study, the effect of preparation temperature, namely room temperature (RT), 40, 60, and 85°C, on producing of high-quality graphene oxide (GO) has been investigated. GO samples have been prepared by chemical oxidation of graphite via a safe improved chemical technique using a blend of two deferent acids: sulphuric acid (H₂SO₄) and phosphoric acid (H₃PO₄) with volume ratio 4:1, respectively. potassium permanganate (KMnO₄) and hydrogen peroxide (H₂O₂) were applied as oxidizing agents. In this work, sodium nitrate (NaNO₃) was excluded, so the emission of hazardous explosive gases such as NO₂ and N₂O₂ was shunned. Ice and oil baths were used to carefully control the temperature. Several characterization instruments including X-Ray diffraction, transmission electron microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, electron dispersive spectroscopy, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, and UV-vis spectroscopy were used to study and compare the synthesized samples. The results indicated that GO can be prepared at RT with graphite oxide, and the purity of GO increased with rising of the solvent temperature. Optical properties of GO samples were studied using UV-vis absorption spectra.

Keywords: chemical method, graphite, graphene oxide, optical properties

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12 Biochar as a Strong Adsorbent for Multiple-Metal Removal from Contaminated Water

Authors: Eman H. El-Gamal, Mai E. Khedr, Randa Ghonim, Mohamed Rashad

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In the past few years, biochar - a highly carbon-rich material produced from agro-wastes by pyrolysis process - was used as an effective adsorbent for heavy metals removal from polluted water. In this study, different types of biochar (rice straw 'RSB', corn cob 'CCB', and Jatropha shell 'JSB' were used to evaluate the adsorption capacity of heavy metals removal from multiple-metal solutions (Cu, Mn, Zn, and Cd). Kinetics modeling has been examined to illustrate potential adsorption mechanisms. The results showed that the potential removal of metal is dependent on the metal and biochar types. The adsorption capacity of the biochars followed the order: RSB > JSB > CCB. In general, RSB and JSB biochars presented high potential removal of heavy metals from polluted water, which was higher than 90 and 80% after 2 hrs of contact time for all metals, respectively. According to the kinetics data, the pseudo-second-order model was agreed strongly with Cu, Mn, Zn, and Cd adsorption onto the biochars (R2 ≥ 0.97), indicating the dominance of specific adsorption process, i.e., chemisorption. In conclusion, this study revealed that RSB and JSB biochar have the potential to be a strong adsorbent for multiple-metal removal from wastewater.

Keywords: adsorption, biochar, chemisorption, polluted water

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11 Potentiostatic Electrodeposition of Cu₂O Films as P-Type Electrode at Room Temperature

Authors: M. M. Moharam, E. M. Elsayed, M. M. Rashad

Abstract:

Single phase Cu₂O films have been prepared via an electrodeposition technique onto ITO glass substrates at room temperature. Likewise, Cu₂O films were deposited using a potentiostatic process from an alkaline electrolyte containing copper (II) nitrate and 1M sodium citrate. Single phase Cu₂O films were electrodeposited at a cathodic deposition potential of 500mV for a reaction period of 90 min, and pH of 12 to yield a film thickness of 0.49 µm. The mechanism for nucleation of Cu₂O films was found to vary with deposition potential. Applying the Scharifker and Hills model at -500 and -600 mV to describe the mechanism of nucleation for the electrochemical reaction, the nucleation mechanism consisted of a mix between instantaneous and progressive growth mechanisms at -500 mV, while above -600 mV the growth mechanism was instantaneous. Using deposition times from 30 to 90 min at -500 mV deposition potential, pure Cu2O films with different microstructures were electrodeposited. Changing the deposition time from 30 to 90 min varied the microstructure from cubic to more complex polyhedra. The transmittance of electrodeposited Cu₂O films ranged from 20-70% in visible range, and samples exhibited a 2.4 eV band gap. The electrical resistivity for electrodeposited Cu₂O films was found to decrease with increasing deposition time from 0.854 x 105 Ω-cm at 30 min to 0.221 x 105 Ω-cm at 90 min without any thermal treatment following the electrodeposition process.

Keywords: Cu₂O, electrodeposition, film thickness, characterization, optical properties

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10 4G LTE Dynamic Pricing: The Drivers, Benefits, and Challenges

Authors: Ahmed Rashad Harb Riad Ismail

Abstract:

The purpose of this research is to study the potential of Dynamic Pricing if deployed by mobile operators and analyse its effects from both operators and consumers side. Furthermore, to conclude, throughout the research study, the recommended conditions for successful Dynamic Pricing deployment, recommended factors identifying the type of markets where Dynamic Pricing can be effective, and proposal for a Dynamic Pricing stakeholders’ framework were presented. Currently, the mobile telecommunications industry is witnessing a dramatic growth rate in the data consumption, being fostered mainly by higher data speed technology as the 4G LTE and by the smart devices penetration rates. However, operators’ revenue from data services lags behind and is decupled from this data consumption growth. Pricing strategy is a key factor affecting this ecosystem. Since the introduction of the 4G LTE technology will increase the pace of data growth in multiples, consequently, if pricing strategies remain constant, then the revenue and usage gap will grow wider, risking the sustainability of the ecosystem. Therefore, this research study is focused on Dynamic Pricing for 4G LTE data services, researching the drivers, benefits and challenges of 4G LTE Dynamic Pricing and the feasibility of its deployment in practice from different perspectives including operators, regulators, consumers, and telecommunications equipment manufacturers point of views.

Keywords: LTE, dynamic pricing, EPC, research

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9 Electrical Properties of Cement-Based Piezoelectric Nanoparticles

Authors: Moustafa Shawkey, Ahmed G. El-Deen, H. M. Mahmoud, M. M. Rashad

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Piezoelectric based cement nanocomposite is a promising technology for generating an electric charge upon mechanical stress of concrete structure. Moreover, piezoelectric nanomaterials play a vital role for providing accurate system of structural health monitoring (SHM) of the concrete structure. In light of increasing awareness of environmental protection and energy crises, generating renewable and green energy form cement based on piezoelectric nanomaterials attracts the attention of the researchers. Herein, we introduce a facial synthesis for bismuth ferrite nanoparticles (BiFeO3 NPs) as piezoelectric nanomaterial via sol gel strategy. The fabricated piezoelectric nanoparticles are uniformly distributed to cement-based nanomaterials with different ratios. The morphological shape was characterized by field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM) and high-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HR-TEM) as well as the crystal structure has been confirmed using X-ray diffraction (XRD). The ferroelectric and magnetic behaviours of BiFeO3 NPs have been investigated. Then, dielectric constant for the prepared cement samples nanocomposites (εr) is calculated. Intercalating BiFeO3 NPs into cement materials achieved remarkable results as piezoelectric cement materials, distinct enhancement in ferroelectric and magnetic properties. Overall, this present study introduces an effective approach to improve the electrical properties based cement applications.

Keywords: piezoelectric nanomaterials, cement technology, bismuth ferrite nanoparticles, dielectric

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8 Evaluation of Postural Stability in Patients with Flat Feet: A Controlled Trial

Authors: Ghada Mohamed Rashad, Doaa Ayoub Elimy, Mohamed Hussein Elgendy, Ahmed Mohamed Fathi Elshiwi, Mahmoud Ghazy

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Background: Flat feet cause changes in foot mobility, foot posture, and load distribution under the foot which influences dynamic balance, that is essential in activities of daily living and for optimal performance in sports activity. Purpose: To investigate the effect of flat feet on dynamic balance including overall stability index (OAI), anteroposterior stability index (APSI) and mediolateral stability index (MLSI). Study Design: The design of the study was an experimental design. Subjects: Forty subjects from both sexes were selected from the Faculty of Physical Therapy, Cairo University, their mean age (23.55 ± 1.74 ) years, divided into two groups, group A (8 males and 12 females) with flat feet, and group B (9 males and 11 females) with normal feet. Methods: The Navicular Drop Test was used to determine if the feet were pronated and Biodex Balance System was used to assess dynamic balance at level 8 and level 4 for both groups. Results: There was no significant difference in dynamic balance including (OSI, APSI and MLSI) of the Biodex at stability level (8) (most stable) (p = 0.56). While there was a significant difference between both groups in all dependent variables at stability level (4) (less stable level) (p = 0.0001). Conclusion: It may be concluded that flat feet have an effect on dynamic balance and there is balance affection in subjects with flat feet.

Keywords: flat feet, dynamic balance, postural stability, types of flat feet, eversion strength

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7 Effect of Nitrogen-Based Cryotherapy on the Calf Muscle Spasticity in Stroke Patients

Authors: Engi E. I. Sarhan, Usama M. Rashad, Ibrahim M. I. Hamoda, Mohammed K. Mohamed

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Background: This study aimed to know the effect of nitrogen-based cryotherapy on the spasticity of calf muscle in stroke patients. Patients were selected from the outpatient clinic of Neurology, Al-Mansoura general hospital, Al-Mansoura University. Subjects and methods: Thirty Stroke Patients of both sexes ranged from 45 to 60 years old were divided randomly into two equal groups, a study group (A) received a nitrogen-based cryotherapy, a selective physical therapy program and ankle foot orthosis (AFO), while as patients in control group (B) received the same program and AFO only. The treatment duration was three times per week for four weeks for both groups. We assessed spasticity of calf muscle before and after treatment subjectively using modified Ashworth scale (MAS) and objectively via measuring H / M ratio on electromyography machine. We also assessed ankle dorsiflexion ROM objectively using two dimensions motion analysis (2D). Results: After treatment, there was a highly significant improvement in the study group compared to the control group regarding the score of MAS, no significant difference in the study group compared to the control group regarding the readings of H / M ratio, highly significant improvement in the study group compared to the control group regarding the 2D motion analysis findings. Conclusion: This modality considers effective in reducing spasticity in the calf muscle and improving ankle dorsiflexion of the affected limb.

Keywords: ankle foot orthosis, nitrogen-based cryotherapy, stroke, spasticity

Procedia PDF Downloads 117
6 Assessment of Lactic Acid Bacteria of Probiotic Potentials in Dairy Produce in Saudi Arabia

Authors: Rashad R. Al-Hindi

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The aim of this study was to isolate and identify lactic acid bacteria and evaluate their therapeutic and food preservation importance. Ninety-three suspected lactic acid bacteria (LAB) were isolated from thirteen different raw and fermented milk of indigenous sources in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The identification of forty-six selected LAB strains and genetic relatedness were performed based on 16S rDNA gene sequence comparison. The LAB counts in certain samples were higher under microaerobic than anaerobic conditions. The identified LAB belonged to genera Enterococcus (16 strains), Lactobacillus (9 strains), Weissella (10 strains), Streptococcus (8 strains) and Lactococcus (3 strains). Phylogenetic tree generated from the full-length (~1.6 kb) sequences confirmed previous findings. Utilization of shorter 16S rDNA sequences (~1.0 kb) also discriminated among strains of which V2 region was the most effective. None of the strains exhibited resistance to clinically relevant antibiotics or undesirable hemolytic activity, while they differed in other probiotic characteristics, e.g., tolerance to acidic pH, resistance to bile salt, and antibacterial activity. In conclusion, the isolates Lactobacillus casei MSJ1, Lactobacillus casei Dwan5, Lactobacillus plantarum EyLan2 and Enterococcus faecium Gail-BawZir8 are likely the best probiotic LAB and we speculate that studying the synergistic effects of bacterial combinations might result in the occurrence of more effective probiotic potential. We argue that the raw and fermented milk of animals hosted in Saudi Arabia, especially stirred yogurt (Laban) made from camel milk, are rich in LAB with promising probiotics potential.

Keywords: fermented foods, lactic acid bacteria, probiotics, Saudi Arabia

Procedia PDF Downloads 105
5 Environmental Controls on the Distribution of Intertidal Foraminifers in Sabkha Al-Kharrar, Saudi Arabia: Implications for Sea-Level Changes

Authors: Talha A. Al-Dubai, Rashad A. Bantan, Ramadan H. Abu-Zied, Brian G. Jones, Aaid G. Al-Zubieri

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Contemporary foraminiferal samples sediments were collected from the intertidal sabkha of Al-Kharrar Lagoon, Saudi Arabia, to study the vertical distribution of Foraminifera and, based on a modern training set, their potential to develop a predictor of former sea-level changes in the area. Based on hierarchical cluster analysis, the intertidal sabkha is divided into three vertical zones (A, B & C) represented by three foraminiferal assemblages, where agglutinated species occupied Zone A and calcareous species occupied the other two zones. In Zone A (high intertidal), Agglutinella compressa, Clavulina angularis and C. multicamerata are dominant species with a minor presence of Peneroplis planatus, Coscinospira hemprichii, Sorites orbiculus, Quinqueloculina lamarckiana, Q. seminula, Ammonia convexa and A. tepida. In contrast, in Zone B (middle intertidal) the most abundant species are P. planatus, C. hemprichii, S. orbiculus, Q. lamarckiana, Q. seminula and Q. laevigata, while Zone C (low intertidal) is characterised by C. hemprichii, Q. costata, S. orbiculus, P. planatus, A. convexa, A. tepida, Spiroloculina communis and S. costigera. A transfer function for sea-level reconstruction was developed using a modern dataset of 75 contemporary sediment samples and 99 species collected from several transects across the sabkha. The model provided an error of 0.12m, suggesting that intertidal foraminifers are able to predict the past sea-level changes with high precision in Al-Kharrar Lagoon, and thus the future prediction of those changes in the area.

Keywords: Lagoonal foraminifers, intertidal sabkha, vertical zonation, transfer function, sea level

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4 Inhibitory Attributes of Saudi Honey Against Hospital Acquired Methicillin Resistant Staph. aureus (MRSA) and Acinetobacter baumannii

Authors: Al-Hindi Rashad, Alotibi Ibrahim

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The aim of this study was to examine the antibacterial activity of the peroxide components of some locally produced honeys: Toran, Zaitoon (Olive), Shaflah, Saha, Jizan, Rabea Aja, Fakhira, Sedr Aljanoob, Tenhat, Karath and Bareq against two of the drug resistant bacteria; i.e., methicillin resistant Staph. aureus (MRSA, ATCC 43330) and Acinetobacter baumannii. Measurement of the antibacterial activity of honey samples by using the agar well diffusion method was adopted as follows: by using turbidity standard McFaraland 0.5, suspensions of bacterial strains MRSA ATCC 43330 and Acinetobacter baumannii were prepared. By the spreading plate method, 100 µl of the suspension was inoculated onto Muller-Hinton agar medium. On the inoculated agar medium, five wells were made using a sterile cork borer (diameter 5 mm).100 µl of honey dilutions (10%, 30%, 50%, 70% and 100%) were used. The study indicated that the highly effective activity was in some local honey samples such as Toran honey against MRSA, and Shafalah honey against MRSA and Acinetobacter baumannii which showed bactericidal effects at concentrations 70 % to 100 % as well. The majority of local honey samples recorded bacteriostatic effects on MRSA and Acinetobacter baumannii at consternations 50 % and above. In conclusion this investigation indicated that in regard to the majority inhibitory effect on microorganisms, the existing of H2O2 in honey samples together with phenolic content greatly provide a strong antibacterial activities among different types of honey, because in some previous studies the H2O2 content of honey interacts with phenolic content and showed better inhibitory effect than in absent of H2O2.

Keywords: antibacterial activity, honey, hospital acquired, Saudi Arabia

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3 Influence of Environment-Friendly Organic Wastes on the Properties of Sandy Soil under Growing Zea mays L. in Arid Regions

Authors: Mohamed Rashad, Mohamed Hafez, Mohamed Emran, Emad Aboukila, Ibrahim Nassar

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Environment-friendly organic wastes of Brewers' spent grain, a byproduct of the brewing process, have recently used as soil amendment to improve soil fertility and plant production. In this work, treatments of 1% (T1) and 2% (T2) of spent grains, 1% (C1) and 2% (C2) of compost and mix of both sources (C1T1) were used and compared to the control for growing Zea mays L. on sandy soil under arid Mediterranean climate. Soils were previously incubated at 65% saturation capacity for a month. The most relevant soil physical and chemical parameters were analysed. Water holding capacity and soil organic matter (OM) increased significantly along the treatments with the highest values in T2. Soil pH decreased along the treatments and the lowest pH was in C1T1. Bicarbonate decreased by 69% in C1T1 comparing to control. Total nitrogen (TN) and available P varied significantly among all treatments and T2, C1T1 and C2 treatments increased 25, 17 and 11 folds in TN and 1.2, 0.6 and 0.3 folds in P, respectively related to control. Available K showed the highest values in C1T1. Soil micronutrients increased significantly along all treatments with the highest values in T2. After corn germination, significant variation was observed in the velocity of germination coefficients (VGC) among all treatments in the order of C1T1>T2>T1>C2>C1>control. The highest records of final germination and germination index were in C1T1 and T2. The spent grains may compensate deficiencies of macro and micronutrients in newly reclaimed sandy soils without adverse effects to sustain crop production with a rider that excessive or continuous use need to be circumvented.

Keywords: corn and squash germination, environmentally friendly organic wastes, soil carbon sequestration, spent grains as soil amendment, water holding capacity

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2 Influence of Applied Inorganic and Organic Nitrogen Fertilizers on Nitrogen Forms in Biochar-Treated Soil

Authors: Eman H. El-Gamal, Maher E. Saleh, Mohamed Rashad, Ibrahim Elsokkary, Mona M. Abd El-Latif

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Biochar application to calcareous soils could potentially influence the nitrogen dynamics that affect the bioavailability of plants. This study was carried out to investigate the effect of incubation periods on the changes of nitrogen levels (total nitrogen TN and exchangeable ammonium NH₄⁺ and nitrate NO₃⁻) in biochar-treated calcareous soil. The incubation course was extended to 144 days at 30 ± 3 ℃ and at 50% of soil water holding capacity (WHC). Two types of biochars were obtained by pyrolysis at 500 ℃ from rice husk (RHB) and sugarcane bagasse (SCBB). The experiment was planned in a factorial experimental design with three factors (6 periods '24 days for each period' × 3 biochar types 'un-amended, RHB and SCBB' × 3 nitrogen fertilizers 'control, ammonium nitrate; AN and animal manure; AM') in a completely randomized design. The results obtained showed that the highest level of TN was found in the first 24 days of the incubation period in all treatments. However, the amount of TN was decreased with proceeding incubation period up to 144 days and reached to the lowest level at the end of incubation with values of change rate was 17.5, 16.6, and 14.6 g kg⁻¹ day⁻¹ for the un-amended, RHB and SCBB treated soil, respectively. The values of change rate in biochar-soils treated with nitrogen fertilizers were decreased gradually through the whole incubation time from 127.22 to 12.45 g kg⁻¹ day⁻¹ and from 65.00 to 13.43 g kg⁻¹ day⁻¹ for AN and AM respectively, in the case of RHB-soil. While in SCBB-soil, these values were decreased from 70.83 to 12.13 g kg⁻¹ day⁻¹ and from 59.17 to 11.48 g kg⁻¹ day⁻¹ for AN and AM treatments, respectively. The lowest concentration of exchangeable NH₄⁺ was generally found through the period from 24-48 days of incubation. However, the addition of nitrogen fertilizers, enhanced NH₄⁺ production through incubation periods. In the case of RHB-soil, the value of change rate in NH₄⁺ level in the first 24 days of incubation was 0.43 mg kg⁻¹ day⁻¹ and with the addition of AN and AM this value increased to 1.54 and 4.38 mg kg⁻¹ day⁻¹, respectively. In the case of SCBB-soil, the value of change rate in NH₄⁺ level was 0.29 mg kg⁻¹ day⁻¹ which increased to 1.04 mg kg⁻¹ day⁻¹ at the end of incubation, and due to the addition of AN and AM this value increased to 2.78 and 1.90 mg kg⁻¹ day⁻¹ in the first 24 days of incubation period, respectively. However, as compared to the control treatment, the lowest rate of change in NH₄⁺ level was found at the end of incubation. On the other hand, incubation of all biochars-amended soil and treated with AN and AM decreased the concentration levels of NO₃⁻, especially through the first 24-72 days of incubation period. As a result, the values of change rate in NO₃⁻ concentrations in all treatments were almost negative.

Keywords: ammonium nitrate, animal manure, biochar, rice husk, sugarcane bagasse

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1 Effect of Land Use and Abandonment on Soil Carbon and Nitrogen Depletion by Runoff in Shallow Soils under Semi-Arid Mediterranean Climate

Authors: Mohamed Emran, Giovanni Pardini, Maria Gispert, Mohamed Rashad

Abstract:

Land use and abandonment in semi-arid degraded ecosystems may cause regressive dynamics in vegetation cover affecting organic matter contents, soil nutrients and structural stability, thus reducing soil resistance to erosion. Mediterranean areas are generally subjected to climatic fluctuations, which modify soil conditions and hydrological processes, such as runoff and water infiltration within the upper soil horizons. Low erosion rates occur in very fragile and shallow soils with minor clay content progressively decrease organic carbon C and nitrogen N pools in the upper soil horizons. Seven soils were selected representing variant context of land use and abandonment at the Cap de Creus Peninsula, Catalonia, NE Spain, from recent cultivated vines and olive groves, mid abandoned forests standing under cork and pine trees, pasture to late abandoned Cistus and Erica scrubs. The aim of this work was to study the effect of changes in land use and abandonment on the depletion of soil organic carbon and nitrogen transported by runoff water in shallow soils after natural rainfall events during two years with different rainfall patterns (1st year with low rainfall and 2nd year with high rainfall) by i) monitoring the most significant soil erosion parameters at recorded rainfall events, ii) studying the most relevant soil physical and chemical characteristics on seasonal basis and iii) analysing the seasonal trends of depleted carbon and nitrogen and their interaction with soil surface compaction parameters. Significant seasonal variability was observed in the relevant soil physical and chemical parameters and soil erosion parameters in all soils to establish their evolution under land use and abandonment during two years of different rainfall patterns (214 and 487 mm per year), giving important indications on soil response to rainfall impacts. Erosion rates decreased significantly with the increasing of soil C and N under low and high rainfall. In cultivated soils, C and N depletion increased by 144% and 115%, respectively by 13% increase in erosion rates during the 1st year with respect to the 2nd year. Depleted C and N were proportionally higher in soils under vines and olive with vulnerable soil structure and low soil resilience leading to degradation, altering nutrients cycles and causing adverse impact on environmental quality. Statistical analysis underlined that, during the 1st year, soil surface was less effective in preserving stocks of organic resources leading to higher susceptibility to erosion with consequent C and N depletion. During the 2nd year, higher organic reserve and water storage occurred despite the increasing of C and N loss with an effective contribution from soil surface compaction parameters. The overall estimation during the two years indicated clear differences among soils under vines, olive, cork and pines, suggesting on the one hand, that current cultivation practices are inappropriate and that reforestation with pines may delay the achievement of better soil conditions. On the other hand, the natural succession of vegetation under Cistus, pasture and Erica suggests the recovery of good soil conditions.

Keywords: land abandonment, land use, nutrient's depletion, soil erosion

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