Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 38

Search results for: Nur Adilah Md Zain

38 Core Tourism Products and Destination Image: Case Study of Sabah, Malaysia

Authors: Nur Adilah Md Zain, Mohd Salehuddin Mohd Zahari, Mohd Hafiz Hanafiah, Muhammad Izzat Zulkifly

Abstract:

This paper empirically investigates the relationship between Sabah state core tourism products and its destination image. Through a descriptive design using a quantitative method with a self-reported and self-administered questionnaire, this research surveyed the individual international tourists who had visited Sabah and experienced the state’s core tourism products. The research findings clearly indicate that Sabah, one of the states in Malaysia has a lot of valuable resources in the eyes of the international tourists. Interestingly, it was found that Sabah’s core tourism products namely unique marine resources, various nature attractions and cultural diversities have undoubtedly contributed to the state’s tourism image. Good feedbacks and the promising insights from the international tourists’ point of view offer varying consequences, repercussion, and implication to the state government and the relevant authorities. Collaboration and cooperation between all responsible authorities are therefore crucial in strengthening the “total tourism experience” among the international tourists in this state.

Keywords: Tourism core products, marine, cultural, nature, destination image, Sabah.

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37 Rubber Wood as a Potential Biomass Feedstock for Biochar via Slow Pyrolysis

Authors: Adilah Shariff, Radin Hakim, Nurhayati Abdullah

Abstract:

Utilisation of biomass feedstock for biochar has received increasing attention because of their potential for carbon sequestration and soil amendment. The aim of this study is to investigate the characteristics of rubber wood as a biomass feedstock for biochar via slow pyrolysis process. This was achieved by using proximate, ultimate, and thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) as well as heating value, pH and lignocellulosic determination. Rubber wood contains 4.13 mf wt.% moisture, 86.30 mf wt.% volatile matter, 0.60 mf wt.% ash content, and 13.10 mf wt.% fixed carbon. The ultimate analysis shows that rubber wood consists of 44.33 mf wt.% carbon, 6.26 mf wt.% hydrogen, 19.31 mf wt.% nitrogen, 0.31 mf wt.% sulphur, and 29.79 mf wt.% oxygen. The higher heating value of rubber wood is 22.5 MJ/kg, and its lower heating value is 21.2 MJ/kg. At 27 °C, the pH value of rubber wood is 6.83 which is acidic. The lignocellulosic analysis revealed that rubber wood composition consists of 2.63 mf wt.% lignin, 20.13 mf wt.% cellulose, and 65.04 mf wt.% hemicellulose. The volatile matter to fixed carbon ratio is 6.58. This led to a biochar yield of 25.14 wt.% at 500 °C. Rubber wood is an environmental friendly feedstock due to its low sulphur content. Rubber wood therefore is a suitable and a potential feedstock for biochar production via slow pyrolysis.

Keywords: Biochar, biomass, rubber wood, slow pyrolysis.

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36 Low Voltage Ride through Capability Techniques for DFIG-Based Wind Turbines

Authors: Sherif O. Zain Elabideen, Ahmed A. Helal, Ibrahim F. El-Arabawy

Abstract:

Due to the drastic increase of the wind turbines installed capacity; the grid codes are increasing the restrictions aiming to treat the wind turbines like other conventional sources sooner. In this paper, an intensive review has been presented for different techniques used to add low voltage ride through capability to Doubly Fed Induction Generator (DFIG) wind turbine. A system model with 1.5 MW DFIG wind turbine is constructed and simulated using MATLAB/SIMULINK to explore the effectiveness of the reviewed techniques.

Keywords: DFIG, grid side converters, low voltage ride through, wind turbine.

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35 Understanding Socioscientific Issues in a Low Literate Society for the Achievement of the Millennium Development Goals

Authors: Jamil Mikhail Yahaya, Ahmad Nurulazam Md Zain, Mageswary Karpudewan

Abstract:

This paper highlights the controversial socioscientific issues and their misconceptions in Nigeria as well as in some other low literate societies around the world. It states the relevance of the issues or problems in Nigeria, which might be neutral or absent in other countries. The need to understand the issues and how such an understanding can contribute to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) is also being discussed. The paper concludes by suggesting the responsibilities of science teachers to remove the misconceptions surrounding the socioscientific issues.

Keywords: Sosioscientific issues, Millennium development goals, Science teachers.

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34 Modeling and Analysis of SVPWM Based Dynamic Voltage Restorer

Authors: Ahmed Helal, Sherif Zain Elabideen, Ahmed Lotfy

Abstract:

In this paper the modeling and analysis of Space Vector Pulse Width Modulation (SVPWM) based Dynamic Voltage Restorer (DVR) using PSCAD/EMTDC software will be presented in details. The simulation includes full modeling of the SVPWM technique used to control the DVR inverter. A test power system composed of three phase voltage source, sag generator, DVR and three phase resistive load is used to demonstrate restoration capability of the DVR. The simulation results of the presented DVR proved excellent voltage sag mitigation to protect sensitive loads.

Keywords: Dynamic voltage restorer, power quality, simulationand modeling, voltage sag.

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33 Strengthening the HCI Approaches in the Software Development Process

Authors: Rogayah A. Majid, Nor Laila Md. Noor, Wan Adilah Wan Adnan

Abstract:

User-Centered Design (UCD), Usability Engineering (UE) and Participatory Design (PD) are the common Human- Computer Interaction (HCI) approaches that are practiced in the software development process, focusing towards issues and matters concerning user involvement. It overlooks the organizational perspective of HCI integration within the software development organization. The Management Information Systems (MIS) perspective of HCI takes a managerial and organizational context to view the effectiveness of integrating HCI in the software development process. The Human-Centered Design (HCD) which encompasses all of the human aspects including aesthetic and ergonomic, is claimed as to provide a better approach in strengthening the HCI approaches to strengthen the software development process. In determining the effectiveness of HCD in the software development process, this paper presents the findings of a content analysis of HCI approaches by viewing those approaches as a technology which integrates user requirements, ranging from the top management to other stake holder in the software development process. The findings obtained show that HCD approach is a technology that emphasizes on human, tools and knowledge in strengthening the HCI approaches to strengthen the software development process in the quest to produce a sustainable, usable and useful software product.

Keywords: Human-Centered Design (HCD), Management Information Systems (MIS), Participatory Design (PD), User- Centered Design (UCD), Usability Engineering (UE)

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32 Reversible Medical Image Watermarking For Tamper Detection And Recovery With Run Length Encoding Compression

Authors: Siau-Chuin Liew, Siau-Way Liew, Jasni Mohd Zain

Abstract:

Digital watermarking in medical images can ensure the authenticity and integrity of the image. This design paper reviews some existing watermarking schemes and proposes a reversible tamper detection and recovery watermarking scheme. Watermark data from ROI (Region Of Interest) are stored in RONI (Region Of Non Interest). The embedded watermark allows tampering detection and tampered image recovery. The watermark is also reversible and data compression technique was used to allow higher embedding capacity.

Keywords: data compression, medical image, reversible, tamperdetection and recovery, watermark.

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31 Vehicle Velocity Estimation for Traffic Surveillance System

Authors: H. A. Rahim, U. U. Sheikh, R. B. Ahmad, A. S. M. Zain

Abstract:

This paper describes an algorithm to estimate realtime vehicle velocity using image processing technique from the known camera calibration parameters. The presented algorithm involves several main steps. First, the moving object is extracted by utilizing frame differencing technique. Second, the object tracking method is applied and the speed is estimated based on the displacement of the object-s centroid. Several assumptions are listed to simplify the transformation of 2D images from 3D real-world images. The results obtained from the experiment have been compared to the estimated ground truth. From this experiment, it exhibits that the proposed algorithm has achieved the velocity accuracy estimation of about ± 1.7 km/h.

Keywords: camera calibration, object tracking, velocity estimation, video image processing

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30 Development of a Simulator for Explaining Organic Chemical Reactions Based on Qualitative Process Theory

Authors: Alicia Y. C. Tang, Rukaini Hj. Abdullah, Sharifuddin M. Zain

Abstract:

This paper discusses the development of a qualitative simulator (abbreviated QRiOM) for predicting the behaviour of organic chemical reactions. The simulation technique is based on the qualitative process theory (QPT) ontology. The modelling constructs of QPT embody notions of causality which can be used to explain the behaviour of a chemical system. The major theme of this work is that, in a qualitative simulation environment, students are able to articulate his/her knowledge through the inspection of explanations generated by software. The implementation languages are Java and Prolog. The software produces explanation in various forms that stresses on the causal theories in the chemical system which can be effectively used to support learning.

Keywords: Chemical reactions, explanation, qualitative processtheory, simulation

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29 Particle Swarm Optimization Approach on Flexible Structure at Wiper Blade System

Authors: A. Zolfagharian, M.Z. Md. Zain, A. R. AbuBakar, M. Hussein

Abstract:

Application of flexible structures has been significantly, increased in industry and aerospace missions due to their contributions and unique advantages over the rigid counterparts. In this paper, vibration analysis of a flexible structure i.e., automobile wiper blade is investigated and controlled. The wiper generates unwanted noise and vibration during the wiping the rain and other particles on windshield which may cause annoying noise in different ranges of frequency. A two dimensional analytical modeled wiper blade whose model accuracy is verified by numerical studies in literature is considered in this study. Particle swarm optimization (PSO) is employed in alliance with input shaping (IS) technique in order to control or to attenuate the amplitude level of unwanted noise/vibration of the wiper blade.

Keywords: Input shaping, noise reduction, particle swarmoptimization, wiper blade

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28 Dynamic Economic Dispatch Constrained by Wind Power Weibull Distribution: A Here-and-Now Strategy

Authors: Mostafa A. Elshahed, Magdy M. Elmarsfawy, Hussain M. Zain Eldain

Abstract:

In this paper, a Dynamic Economic Dispatch (DED) model is developed for the system consisting of both thermal generators and wind turbines. The inclusion of a significant amount of wind energy into power systems has resulted in additional constraints on DED to accommodate the intermittent nature of the output. The probability of stochastic wind power based on the Weibull probability density function is included in the model as a constraint; A Here-and-Now Approach. The Environmental Protection Agency-s hourly emission target, which gives the maximum emission during the day, is used as a constraint to reduce the atmospheric pollution. A 69-bus test system with non-smooth cost function is used to illustrate the effectiveness of the proposed model compared with static economic dispatch model with including the wind power.

Keywords: Dynamic Economic Dispatch, StochasticOptimization, Weibull Distribution, Wind Power

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27 Mathematical Model for Progressive Phase Distribution of Ku-band Reflectarray Antennas

Authors: M. Y. Ismail, M. Inam, A. F. M. Zain, N. Misran

Abstract:

Progressive phase distribution is an important consideration in reflectarray antenna design which is required to form a planar wave in front of the reflectarray aperture. This paper presents a detailed mathematical model in order to determine the required reflection phase values from individual element of a reflectarray designed in Ku-band frequency range. The proposed technique of obtaining reflection phase can be applied for any geometrical design of elements and is independent of number of array elements. Moreover the model also deals with the solution of reflectarray antenna design with both centre and off-set feed configurations. The theoretical modeling has also been implemented for reflectarrays constructed on 0.508mm thickness of different dielectric substrates. The results show an increase in the slope of the phase curve from 4.61°/mm to 22.35°/mm by varying the material properties.

Keywords: Mathematical modeling, Progressive phase distribution, Reflectarray antenna, Reflection phase.

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26 Robustness of Hybrid Learning Acceleration Feedback Control Scheme in Flexible Manipulators

Authors: M. Z Md Zain, M. O. Tokhi, M. S. Alam

Abstract:

This paper describes a practical approach to design and develop a hybrid learning with acceleration feedback control (HLC) scheme for input tracking and end-point vibration suppression of flexible manipulator systems. Initially, a collocated proportionalderivative (PD) control scheme using hub-angle and hub-velocity feedback is developed for control of rigid-body motion of the system. This is then extended to incorporate a further hybrid control scheme of the collocated PD control and iterative learning control with acceleration feedback using genetic algorithms (GAs) to optimize the learning parameters. Experimental results of the response of the manipulator with the control schemes are presented in the time and frequency domains. The performance of the HLC is assessed in terms of input tracking, level of vibration reduction at resonance modes and robustness with various payloads.

Keywords: Flexible manipulator, iterative learning control, vibration suppression.

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25 Kinematic Analysis of an Assistive Robotic Leg for Hemiplegic and Hemiparetic Patients

Authors: M.R. Safizadeh, M. Hussein, K. F. Samat, M.S. Che Kob, M.S. Yaacob, M.Z. Md Zain

Abstract:

The aim of this paper is to present the kinematic analysis and mechanism design of an assistive robotic leg for hemiplegic and hemiparetic patients. In this work, the priority is to design and develop the lightweight, effective and single driver mechanism on the basis of experimental hip and knee angles- data for walking speed of 1 km/h. A mechanism of cam-follower with three links is suggested for this purpose. The kinematic analysis is carried out and analysed using commercialized MATLAB software based on the prototype-s links sizes and kinematic relationships. In order to verify the kinematic analysis of the prototype, kinematic analysis data are compared with the experimental data. A good agreement between them proves that the anthropomorphic design of the lower extremity exoskeleton follows the human walking gait.

Keywords: Kinematic analysis, assistive robotic leg, lower extremity exoskeleton, cam-follower mechanism.

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24 Appreciating, Interpreting and Understanding Posters via Levels of Visual Literacy

Authors: Mona Masood, Zakiah Zain

Abstract:

This study was conducted in Malaysia to discover how meaning and appreciation were construed among 35 Form Five students. Panofsky-s theory was employed to discover the levels of reasoning among students when various types of posters were displayed. The independent variables used were posters that carried explicit and implicit meanings; the moderating variable was students- visual literacy levels while the dependent variable was the implicit interpretation level. One-way ANOVA was applied for the data analysis. The data showed that before students were exposed to Panofsky-s theory, there were differences in thinking between boys, who did not think abstractly or implicit in comparison to girls. The study showed that students- visual literacy in posters depended on the use of visual texts and illustration. This paper discuss further on posters with text only have a tendency to be too abstract as opposed to posters with visuals plus text.

Keywords: explicit visual, implicit visual, visual interpretation, visual literacy

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23 Antibacterial Effect of Silver Nanoparticles on Multi Drug Resistant Pseudomonas Aeruginosa

Authors: Athirah Nur Amirulhusni, Navindra Kumari Palanisamy, Zaini Mohd-Zain, Liew Jian Ping, R.Durairaj

Abstract:

Multidrug resistant organisms have been taunting the medical world for the last few decades. Even with new antibiotics developed, resistant strains have emerged soon after. With the advancement of nanotechnology, we investigated colloidal silver nanoparticles for its antimicrobial activity against Pseudomonas aeruginosa. This organism is a multidrug resistant which contributes to the high morbidity and mortality in immunocompromised patients. Five multidrug resistant strains were used in this study. The antimicrobial effect was studied using the disc diffusion and broth dilution techniques. An inhibition zone of 11 mm was observed with 10 μg dose of the nanoparticles. The nanoparticles exhibited MIC of 50 μg/ml when added at the lag phase and the subinhibitory concentration was measured as 100 μg/ml. The MIC50 value showed to be 15 μg/ml. This study suggests that silver nanoparticles can be further developed as an antimicrobial agent, hence decreasing the burden of the multidrug resistance phenomena.

Keywords: Antimirobial activity, Multidrug resistance, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Silver nanoparticles

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22 Effects of Mobile Phone Generated High Frequency Electromagnetic Field on the Viability and Biofilm Formation of Staphylococcus aureus

Authors: Zaini Mohd-Zain, Mohd-Saufee A.F. Mohd-Ismail, Norlida Buniyamin

Abstract:

Staphylococcus aureus, one of the microflora in a human external auditory canal (EAC) is frequently exposed to highfrequency electromagnetic field (HF-EMF) generated by mobile phones. It is normally non-pathogenic but in certain circumstances, it can cause infections. This study investigates the changes in the physiology of S. aureus when exposed to HF-EMF of a mobile phone. Exponentially grown S. aureus were exposed to two conditions of EMF irradiation (standby-mode and on-call mode) at four durations; 15, 30, 45 and 60 min. Changes in the viability and biofilm production of the S. aureus were compared between the two conditions of exposure. EMF from the standby-mode has enhanced the growth of S. aureus but during on-call, the growth was suppressed. No significant difference in the amount of biofilm produced in both modes of exposure was observed. Thus, HF-EMF of mobile phone affects the viability of S. aureus but not its ability to produce biofilm.

Keywords: Electromagnetic field, mobile phone, biofilm, Staphylococcus aureus

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21 Deriving Causal Explanation from Qualitative Model Reasoning

Authors: Alicia Y. C. Tang, Sharifuddin M. Zain, Noorsaadah A. Rahman, Rukaini Abdullah

Abstract:

This paper discusses a qualitative simulator QRiOM that uses Qualitative Reasoning (QR) technique, and a process-based ontology to model, simulate and explain the behaviour of selected organic reactions. Learning organic reactions requires the application of domain knowledge at intuitive level, which is difficult to be programmed using traditional approach. The main objective of QRiOM is to help learners gain a better understanding of the fundamental organic reaction concepts, and to improve their conceptual comprehension on the subject by analyzing the multiple forms of explanation generated by the software. This paper focuses on the generation of explanation based on causal theories to explicate various phenomena in the chemistry subject. QRiOM has been tested with three classes problems related to organic chemistry, with encouraging results. This paper also presents the results of preliminary evaluation of QRiOM that reveal its explanation capability and usefulness.

Keywords: Artificial intelligence, explanation, ontology, organicreactions, qualitative reasoning, QPT.

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20 The Energy Impacts of Using Top-Light Daylighting Systems for Academic Buildings in Tropical Climate

Authors: M. S. Alrubaih, M. F. M. Zain, N. L. N. Ibrahim, M.A. Alghoul, K. I. Ben Sauod

Abstract:

Careful design and selection of daylighting systems can greatly help in reducing not only artificial lighting use, but also decrease cooling energy consumption and, therefore, potential for downsizing air-conditioning systems. This paper aims to evaluate the energy performance of two types of top-light daylighting systems due to the integration of daylight together with artificial lighting in an existing examinaton hall in University Kebangsaan Malaysia, based on a hot and humid climate. Computer simulation models have been created for building case study (base case) and the two types of toplight daylighting designs for building energy performance evaluation using the VisualDOE 4.0 building energy simulation program. The finding revealed that daylighting through top-light systems is a very beneficial design strategy in reducing annual lighting energy consumption and the overall total annual energy consumption.

Keywords: Academic buildings, Daylighting, Top-lighting, Energy savings, Tropical Climate

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19 The Effect of Feedstock Type and Slow Pyrolysis Temperature on Biochar Yield from Coconut Wastes

Authors: Adilah Shariff, Nur Syairah Mohamad Aziz, Norsyahidah Md Saleh, Nur Syuhada Izzati Ruzali

Abstract:

The first objective of this study is to investigate the suitability of coconut frond (CF) and coconut husk (CH) as feedstocks using a laboratory-scale slow pyrolysis experimental setup. The second objective is to investigate the effect of pyrolysis temperature on the biochar yield. The properties of CF and CH feedstocks were compared. The properties of the CF and CH feedstocks were investigated using proximate and elemental analysis, lignocellulosic determination, and also thermogravimetric analysis (TGA). The CF and CH feedstocks were pyrolysed at 300, 400, 500, 600 and 700 °C for 2 hours at 10 °C/min heating rate. The proximate analysis showed that CF feedstock has 89.96 mf wt% volatile matter, 4.67 mf wt% ash content and 5.37 mf wt% fixed carbon. The lignocelluloses analysis showed that CF feedstock contained 21.46% lignin, 39.05% cellulose and 22.49% hemicelluloses. The CH feedstock contained 84.13 mf wt% volatile matter, 0.33 mf wt% ash content, 15.54 mf wt% fixed carbon, 28.22% lignin, 33.61% cellulose and 22.03% hemicelluloses. Carbon and oxygen are the major component of the CF and CH feedstock compositions. Both of CF and CH feedstocks contained very low percentage of sulfur, 0.77% and 0.33%, respectively. TGA analysis indicated that coconut wastes are easily degraded. It may be due to their high volatile content. Between the temperature ranges of 300 and 800 °C, the TGA curves showed that the weight percentage of CF feedstock is lower than CH feedstock by 0.62%-5.88%. From the D TGA curves, most of the weight loss occurred between 210 and 400 °C for both feedstocks. The maximum weight loss for both CF and CH are 0.0074 wt%/min and 0.0061 wt%/min, respectively, which occurred at 324.5 °C. The yield percentage of both CF and CH biochars decreased significantly as the pyrolysis temperature was increased. For CF biochar, the yield decreased from 49.40 wt% to 28.12 wt% as the temperature increased from 300 to 700 °C. The yield for CH biochars also decreased from 52.18 wt% to 28.72 wt%. The findings of this study indicated that both CF and CH are suitable feedstock for slow pyrolysis of biochar.

Keywords: Biochar, biomass, coconut wastes, slow pyrolysis.

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18 Thermal Regeneration of CO2 Spent Palm Shell-Polyetheretherketone Activated Carbon Sorbents

Authors: Usman D. Hamza, Noor S. Nasri, Mohammed Jibril, Husna Mohd Zain

Abstract:

Activated carbons (M4P0, M4P2, and M5P2) used in this research were produced from palm shell and polyetherether ketone (PEEK) via carbonization, impregnation and microwave activation. The adsorption/desorption process was carried out using static volumetric adsorption. Regeneration is important in the overall economy of the process and waste minimization. This work focuses on the thermal regeneration of the CO2 exhausted microwave activated carbons. The regeneration strategy adopted was thermal with nitrogen purge desorption with N2 feed flow rate of 20 ml/min for 1 h at atmospheric pressure followed by drying at 150oC.Seven successive adsorption/regeneration processes were carried out on the material. It was found that after seven adsorption regeneration cycles; the regeneration efficiency (RE) for CO2 activated carbon from palm shell only (M4P0) was more than 90% while that of hybrid palm shell-PEEK (M4P2, M5P2) was above 95%. The cyclic adsorption and regeneration shows the stability of the adsorbent materials.

Keywords: Activated carbon, Palm shell-PEEK, Regeneration, thermal.

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17 Generating Qualitative Causal Graph using Modeling Constructs of Qualitative Process Theory for Explaining Organic Chemistry Reactions

Authors: Alicia Y. C. Tang, Rukaini Abdullah, Sharifuddin M. Zain, Noorsaadah A. Rahman

Abstract:

This paper discusses the causal explanation capability of QRIOM, a tool aimed at supporting learning of organic chemistry reactions. The development of the tool is based on the hybrid use of Qualitative Reasoning (QR) technique and Qualitative Process Theory (QPT) ontology. Our simulation combines symbolic, qualitative description of relations with quantity analysis to generate causal graphs. The pedagogy embedded in the simulator is to both simulate and explain organic reactions. Qualitative reasoning through a causal chain will be presented to explain the overall changes made on the substrate; from initial substrate until the production of final outputs. Several uses of the QPT modeling constructs in supporting behavioral and causal explanation during run-time will also be demonstrated. Explaining organic reactions through causal graph trace can help improve the reasoning ability of learners in that their conceptual understanding of the subject is nurtured.

Keywords: Qualitative reasoning, causal graph, organicreactions, explanation, QPT, modeling constructs.

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16 Response of King Abdulla Canal Water to the Upgrade of As Samra WWTP

Authors: Abbas S. Al-Omari, Zain M. Al-Houri

Abstract:

The response of King Abdulla Canal (KAC) water to the upgrade of As Samra Wastewater Treatment Plant which discharges its effluent to the Zarqa River is investigated. Time series quality data that extends between October 2005 and December 2009 obtained by a state of the art telemetric monitoring system were analyzed for COD, EC, TP and TN at two monitoring stations located upstream and downstream of the confluence of the Zarqa River with KAC. The samples- means and the t-test showed that there has been significant improvement in the quality of the KAC water for COD, and TP. However, the improvement in the TN was found statistically insignificant, whereas the EC of the KAC was unaffected by the upgrade. Comparing the selected parameters with the standards and guidelines for using treated wastewater in irrigation showed that the KAC water has improved towards meeting the required standards and guidelines for treated wastewater reuse in irrigation.

Keywords: As Samra wastewater treatment plant, Telemetric monitoring system, Treated wastewater, Water quality monitoring, Zarqa River watershed.

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15 Development of a Brain Glutamate Microbiosensor

Authors: Kartika S. Hamdan, Zainiharyati M. Zain, Mohamed I. A. Halim, Jafri M. Abdullah, Robert D. O'Neill

Abstract:

This work attempts to improve the permselectivity of poly-ortho-phenylenediamine (PPD) coating for glutamate biosensor applications on Pt microelectrode, using constant potential amperometry and cyclic voltammetry. Percentage permeability of the modified PPD microelectrode was carried out towards hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) and ascorbic acid (AA) whereas permselectivity represents the percentage interference by AA in H2O2 detection. The 50-μm diameter Pt disk microelectrode showed a good permeability value toward H2O2 (95%) and selectivity against AA (0.01%) compared to other sizes of electrode studied here. The electrode was further modified with glutamate oxidase (GluOx) that was immobilized and cross linked with glutaraldehyde (GA, 0.125%), resulting in Pt/PPD/GluOx-GA electrode design. The maximum current density Jmax and apparent Michaelis constant, KM, obtained on Pt/PPD/GluOx-GA electrodes were 48 μA cm-2 and 50 μM, respectively. The linear region slope (LRS) was 0.96 μA cm-2 mM-1. The detection limit (LOD) for glutamate was 3.0 ± 0.6 μM. This study shows a promising glutamate microbiosensor for brain glutamate detection. 

Keywords: Brain, Glutamate, Microbiosensor.

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14 The Potential of Roof Top Rain Water Harvesting as a Water Resource in Jordan: Featuring Two Application Case Studies

Authors: Zain M. Al-Houri, Oday K. Abu-Hadba, Khaled A. Hamdan

Abstract:

Roof top rainwater harvesting (RWH) has been carried out worldwide to provide an inexpensive source of water for many people. This research aims at evaluating the potential of roof top rain water harvesting as a resource in Jordan. For the purpose of this work, two case studies at Al-Jubiha and Shafa-Badran districts in Amman city were selected. All existing rooftops in both districts were identified by digitizing 2012 satellite images of the two districts using Google earth and ArcGIS tools. Rational method was used to estimate the potential volume of rainwater that can be harvested from the digitized rooftops. Results indicated that 1.17 and 0.526 MCM/yr can be harvested in Al-Jubiha and Shafa-Badran districts, respectively. This study should increase the attention to the importance of implementing RWH technique in Jordanian residences as a viable alternative for ensuring a continued source of non-potable water.

Keywords: Amman districts, ArcGIS, Rational method, Roof top rain water harvesting.

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13 A Comparative Study on Biochar from Slow Pyrolysis of Corn Cob and Cassava Wastes

Authors: Adilah Shariff, Nurhidayah Mohamed Noor, Alexander Lau, Muhammad Azwan Mohd Ali

Abstract:

Biomass such as corn and cassava wastes if left to decay will release significant quantities of greenhouse gases (GHG) including carbon dioxide and methane. The biomass wastes can be converted into biochar via thermochemical process such as slow pyrolysis. This approach can reduce the biomass wastes as well as preserve its carbon content. Biochar has the potential to be used as a carbon sequester and soil amendment. The aim of this study is to investigate the characteristics of the corn cob, cassava stem, and cassava rhizome in order to identify their potential as pyrolysis feedstocks for biochar production. This was achieved by using the proximate and elemental analyses as well as calorific value and lignocellulosic determination. The second objective is to investigate the effect of pyrolysis temperature on the biochar produced. A fixed bed slow pyrolysis reactor was used to pyrolyze the corn cob, cassava stem, and cassava rhizome. The pyrolysis temperatures were varied between 400 °C and 600 °C, while the heating rate and the holding time were fixed at 5 °C/min and 1 hour, respectively. Corn cob, cassava stem, and cassava rhizome were found to be suitable feedstocks for pyrolysis process because they contained a high percentage of volatile matter more than 80 mf wt.%. All the three feedstocks contained low nitrogen and sulphur content less than 1 mf wt.%. Therefore, during the pyrolysis process, the feedstocks give off very low rate of GHG such as nitrogen oxides and sulphur oxides. Independent of the types of biomass, the percentage of biochar yield is inversely proportional to the pyrolysis temperature. The highest biochar yield for each studied temperature is from slow pyrolysis of cassava rhizome as the feedstock contained the highest percentage of ash compared to the other two feedstocks. The percentage of fixed carbon in all the biochars increased as the pyrolysis temperature increased. The increment of pyrolysis temperature from 400 °C to 600 °C increased the fixed carbon of corn cob biochar, cassava stem biochar and cassava rhizome biochar by 26.35%, 10.98%, and 6.20% respectively. Irrespective of the pyrolysis temperature, all the biochars produced were found to contain more than 60 mf wt.% fixed carbon content, much higher than its feedstocks.

Keywords: Biochar, biomass, cassava wastes, corn cob, pyrolysis.

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12 Identification of Anaerobic Microorganisms for Converting Kitchen Waste to Biogas

Authors: A. Malakahmad, S.M. Zain, N.E. Ahmad Basri, S. R. Mohamed Kutty, M. H. Isa

Abstract:

Anaerobic digestion process is one of the alternative methods to convert organic waste into methane gas which is a fuel and energy source. Activities of various kinds of microorganisms are the main factor for anaerobic digestion which produces methane gas. Therefore, in this study a modified Anaerobic Baffled Reactor (ABR) with working volume of 50 liters was designed to identify the microorganisms through biogas production. The mixture of 75% kitchen waste and 25% sewage sludge was used as substrate. Observations on microorganisms in the ABR showed that there exists a small amount of protozoa (5%) and fungi (2%) in the system, but almost 93% of the microorganism population consists of bacteria. It is definitely clear that bacteria are responsible for anaerobic biodegradation of kitchen waste. Results show that in the acidification zone of the ABR (front compartments of reactor) fast growing bacteria capable of growth at high substrate levels and reduced pH was dominant. A shift to slower growing scavenging bacteria that grow better at higher pH was occurring towards the end of the reactor. Due to the ability of activity in acetate environment the percentages of Methanococcus, Methanosarcina and Methanotrix were higher than other kinds of methane former in the system.

Keywords: Anaerobic microorganism identification, Kitchenwaste, Biogas.

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11 Evaluation of Drainage Conditions along Selected Roadways in Amman

Authors: Zain M. Al-Houri, Abbas S. Al-Omari

Abstract:

Roadways in Amman city face many problems consequent upon poor drainage systems. Evaluation tools are necessary to identify those roads needing improvement in their drainage system, and those needing regular maintenance. This work aims at evaluating drainage conditions in selected roadways in Amman city with the intent of identifying the problems encountered in their drainage systems. Three sites in the vicinity of Amman city have been selected and then inspected via several field visits to determine the state of their existing drainage systems and define the major problems encountered in these systems. The evaluation tool used in this study is based on visual inspection supported by photographs that depicted the defined problems. Following the field assessment, the drainage system in each road was rated as excellent, fair, good, or poor. The study reveals that more than 60% of the roadways in the selected sites were in poor drainage conditions, which lead to tremendous environmental problems. This assessment serves as a guide for local decision makers to help plan for the maintenance of Amman city roadways drainage systems, and propose ways of managing the associated problems.

Keywords: Amman Stormwater, Drainage systems, Environmental problems, Roadways drainage.

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10 The Social and Environmental Roles of Verandah in Tropical Houses

Authors: M. H. M. Zin, N. L. N. Ibrahim, M. F. M. Zain, M. Jamil

Abstract:

Located within the tropical belt region, there are certain rules which should implemented in creating a passive sustainable housing design in Malaysia. Traditional Malay house possess a strong character with certain special spaces to create a sustainable house which suit to the tropical climate in Malaysia. One of the special space known as verandah or serambi gantung, create various advantages in solving various issues. However, this special space is not extremely being applied currently which produce major issues in term of social and environmental aspects. Hence, this phenomena create a negative impact to the occupant while Malaysia already has a best housing design previously. Therefore, this paper aims to explore both of the main issues mentioned above and reveal the advantages of implementing verandah into passive sustainable housing design in Malaysia. A systematic literature review is the main methodology in this research to identify the various advantages about verandah.. The study reveals that verandah is the best solution in term of social and environmental issues and should be implemented in current housing design in Malaysia.

Keywords: Tropical climate, traditional Malay house, verandah, passive sustainable housing design

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9 Properties of Fly Ash Brick Prepared in Local Environment of Bangladesh

Authors: Robiul Islam, Monjurul Hasan, Rezaul Karim, M. F. M. Zain

Abstract:

Coal fly ash, an industrial by product of coal combustion thermal power plants is considered as a hazardous material and its improper disposal has become an environmental issue. On the other hand, manufacturing conventional clay bricks involves on consumption of large amount of clay and leads substantial depletion of topsoil. This paper unveils the possibility of using fly ash as a partial replacement of clay for brick manufacturing considering the local technology practiced in Bangladesh. The effect of fly ash with different replacing ratio (0%, 20%, 30%, 40%, and 50% by volume) of clay on properties of bricks was studied. Bricks were made in the field parallel to ordinary bricks marked with specific number for different percentage to identify them at time of testing. No physical distortion is observed in fly ash brick after burning in the kiln. Results from laboratory test show that compressive strength of brick is decreased with the increase of fly ash and maximum compressive strength is found to be 19.6 MPa at 20% of fly ash. In addition, water absorption of fly ash brick is increased with the increase of fly ash. The abrasion value and Specific gravity of coarse aggregate prepared from brick with fly ash also studied and the results of this study suggests that 20% fly ash can be considered as the optimum fly ash content for producing good quality bricks utilizing present practiced technology.

Keywords: Bangladesh brick, fly ash, clay brick, physical properties, compressive strength.

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