Cotton, as a strategic crop, plays an important role in providing human food and clothing need, because of its oil, protein, and fiber. Iran has been one of the largest cotton producers in the world in the past, but unfortunately, for economic reasons, its production is reduced now. One of the ways to reduce the cost of cotton production is to expand the mechanization of cotton harvesting. Iranian farmers do not accept the function of cotton harvesters. One reason for this lack of acceptance of cotton harvesting machines is the number of field losses on these machines. So, the majority of cotton fields are harvested by hand. Although the correct setting of the harvesting machine is very important in the cotton losses, the morphological properties of the cotton plant also affect the performance of cotton harvesters. In this study, the effect of some cotton morphological properties such as the height of the cotton plant, number, and length of sympodial and monopodial branches, boll dimensions, boll weight, number of carpels and bracts angle were evaluated on the performance of cotton picker. In this research, the efficiency of John Deere 9920 spindle Cotton picker is investigated on five different Iranian cotton cultivars. The results indicate that there was a significant difference between the five cultivars in terms of machine harvest efficiency. Golestan cultivar showed the best cotton harvester performance with an average of 87.6% of total harvestable seed cotton and Khorshid cultivar had the least cotton harvester performance. The principal component analysis showed that, at 50.76% probability, the cotton picker efficiency is affected by the bracts angle positively and by boll dimensions, the number of carpels and the height of cotton plants negatively. The seed cotton remains (in the plant and on the ground) after harvester in PCA scatter plot were in the same zone with boll dimensions and several carpels.
The work on indigenous binders in this paper focused on the following indigenous raw materials: red clay, red lava and pumice (as primary aluminosilicate precursors), wood ash and gypsum (as supplementary minerals), and sodium sulfate and lime (as alkali activators). The experimental methods used for evaluation of these indigenous raw materials included laser granulometry, x-ray fluorescence (XRF) spectroscopy, and chemical reactivity. Formulations were devised for transforming these raw materials into alkali aluminosilicate-based hydraulic cements. These formulations were processed into hydraulic cements via simple heating and milling actions to render thermal activation, mechanochemical and size reduction effects. The resulting hydraulic cements were subjected to laser granulometry, heat of hydration and reactivity tests. These cements were also used to prepare mortar mixtures, which were evaluated via performance of compressive strength tests. The measured values of strength were correlated with the reactivity, size distribution and microstructural features of raw materials. Some of the indigenous hydraulic cements produced in this reporting period yielded viable levels of compressive strength. The correlation trends established in this work are being evaluated for development of simple and thorough methods of qualifying indigenous raw materials for use in production of indigenous hydraulic cements.
To the author’s best knowledge, there are no published reports of effective methods for teaching fescue toxicosis and grass endophyte technology in the USA. To address this need, a group of university scientists, industry representatives, government agents, and livestock producers formed an organization called the Alliance for Grassland Renewal. One goal of the Alliance was to develop a teaching method that could be employed across all regions in the USA and all sectors of the agricultural community. The first step in developing this method was identification of experts who were familiar with the science and management of fescue toxicosis. The second step was curriculum development. Experts wrote a curriculum that addressed all aspects of toxicosis and management, including toxicology, animal nutrition, pasture management, economics, and mycology. The curriculum was created for presentation in lectures, laboratories, and in the field. The curriculum was in that it could be delivered across state lines, regardless of peculiar, in-state recommendations. The curriculum was also unique as it was unanimously supported by private companies otherwise in competition with each other. The final step in developing this teaching method was formulating a delivery plan. All experts, including university, industry, government, and production, volunteered to travel from any state in the USA, converge in one location, teach a 1-day workshop, then travel to the next location. The results of this teaching method indicate widespread success. Since 2012, experts across the entire USA have converged to teach Alliance workshops in Kansas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Kentucky, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, and Virginia, with ongoing workshops in Arkansas and Tennessee. Data from post-workshop surveys indicate that instruction has been effective, as at least 50% of the participants stated their intention to adopt the endophyte technology presented in these workshops. The teaching method developed by the Alliance for Grassland Renewal has proved to be effective, and the Alliance continues to expand across the USA.
Res2ValHUM project involves institutions from the Spanish Autonomous Region of Galicia and the north of Portugal (districts of Porto and Braga) and has as overall objectives of promotion of composting as an process for the correct managing of organic waste, valorization of compost in different fields or applications for the constitution of products with high added value, reducing of raw materials losses, and reduction of the amount of waste throw in landfills. Three main actions were designed to achieve the objectives: development of a management tool to improve collection and residue channeling for composting, sensibilization of the population for composting and characterization of the chemical and biological properties of compost and humic and fulvic substances to envisage high-value applications of compost. Here we present the cooperative activity of Galician and northern Portuguese institutions to valorize organic waste in both regions with common socio-economic characteristics and residue management problems. Results from the creation of the resource manage tool proved the existence of a large number of agricultural wastes that could be valorized. In the North of Portugal, the wastes from maize, oats, potato, apple, grape pomace, rye, and olive pomace can be highlighted. In the Autonomous Region of Galicia the wastes from maize, wheat, potato, apple, and chestnuts can be emphasized. Regarding the isolation and identification of microbial consortia from compost samples, results proved microorganisms belong mainly to the genus Bacillus spp. Among all the species identified in compost samples, Bacillus licheniformis can be highlighted in the production of humic and fulvic acids.
White grub (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae) is a major destructive pest in western Himalayan region of Uttarakhand. Beetles feed on apple, apricot, plum, walnut etc. during night while, second and third instar grubs feed on live roots of cultivated as well as non-cultivated crops. Collection and identification of scarab beetles through light trap was carried out at Crop Research Centre, Govind Ballab Pant University Pantnagar, Udham Singh Nagar (Uttarakhand) during 2018. Field trials were also conducted in 2018 to evaluate pre and post sown application of different insecticides against the white grub infesting soybean. The insecticides like Carbofuran 3 Granule (G) (750 g a.i./ha), Clothianidin 50 Water Dispersal Granule (WG) (120 g a.i./ha), Fipronil 0.3 G (50 g a.i./ha), Thiamethoxam 25 WG (80 g a.i./ha), Imidacloprid 70 WG (300 g a.i./ha), Chlorantraniliprole 0.4% G(100 g a.i./ha) and mixture of Fipronil 40% and Imidacloprid 40% WG (300 g a.i./ha) were applied at the time of sowing in pre sown experiment while same dosage of insecticides were applied in standing soybean crop during (first fortnight of July). Commutative plant mortality data were recorded after 20, 40, 60 days intervals and compared with untreated control. Total 23 species of white grub beetles recorded on the light trap and Holotrichia serrata Fabricious (Coleoptera: Melolonthinae) was found to be predominant species by recording 20.6% relative abundance out of the total light trap catch (i.e. 1316 beetles) followed by Phyllognathus sp. (14.6% relative abundance). H. rosettae and Heteronychus lioderus occupied third and fourth rank with 11.85% and 9.65% relative abundance, respectively. The emergence of beetles of predominant species started from 15th March, 2018. In April, average light trap catch was 382 white grub beetles, however, peak emergence of most of the white grub species was observed from June to July, 2018 i.e. 336 beetles in June followed by 303 beetles in the July. On the basis of the emergence pattern of white grub beetles, it may be concluded that the Peak Emergence Period (PEP) for the beetles of H. serrata was second fortnight of April for the total period of 15 days. In May, June and July relatively low population of H. serrata was observed. A decreasing trend in light trap catch was observed and went on till September during the study. No single beetle of H. serrata was observed on light trap from September onwards. The cumulative plant mortality data in both the experiments revealed that all the insecticidal treatments were significantly superior in protection-wise (6.49-16.82% cumulative plant mortality) over untreated control where highest plant mortality was 17.28 to 39.65% during study. The mixture of Fipronil 40% and Imidacloprid 40% WG applied at the rate of 300 g a.i. per ha proved to be most effective having lowest plant mortality i.e. 9.29 and 10.94% in pre and post sown crop, followed by Clothianidin 50 WG (120 g a.i. per ha) where the plant mortality was 10.57 and 11.93% in pre and post sown treatments, respectively. Both treatments were found significantly at par among each other. Production-wise, all the insecticidal treatments were found statistically superior (15.00-24.66 q per ha grain yields) over untreated control where the grain yield was 8.25 & 9.13 q per ha. Treatment Fipronil 40% + Imidacloprid 40% WG applied at the rate of 300 g a.i. per ha proved to be most effective and significantly superior over Imidacloprid 70WG applied at the rate of 300 g a.i. per ha.
Hydroponic greenhouses systems (production of the artificial substrate without soil) are becoming popular in the world. Mostly the system is used to grow vegetables and berries. Different countries are taking action to participate in the development of hydroponic technology and solutions such as EU members, Turkey, Australia, New Zealand, Israel, Scandinavian countries, etc. Many vegetables and berries are grown by hydroponics in Europe. As a result of our research, we have obtained material containing manganese and nitrogen. It became possible to produce this fertilizer by means of one-stage thermal processing, using industrial waste containing manganese (ores and sludges) and mineral substance (ammonium nitrate) that exist in Georgia. The received material is usable as a micro-fertilizer with economic efficiency. It became possible to turn practically water-insoluble manganese dioxide substance into the soluble condition from industrial waste in an indirect way. The ability to use the material as a fertilizer is predetermined by its chemical and phase composition, as the amount of the active component of the material in relation to manganese is 30%. At the same time, the active component elements presented non-ballast sustained action compounds. The studies implemented in Poland and in Georgia by us have shown that the manganese-containing micro-fertilizer- Mn(NO3)2 can provide the plant with nitrate nitrogen, which is a form that can be used for plants, providing the economy and simplicity of the application of fertilizers. Given the fact that the application of the manganese-containing micro-fertilizers significantly increases the productivity and improves the quality of the big number of agricultural products, it is necessary to mention that it is recommended to introduce the manganese containing fertilizers into the following cultures: sugar beet, corn, potato, vegetables, vine grape, fruit, berries, and other cultures. Also, as a result of the study, it was established that the material obtained is the predominant fertilizer for vegetable cultures in the soil. Based on the positive results of the research, we consider it expedient to conduct research in hydroponic systems, which will enable us to provide plants the required amount of manganese; we also introduce nitrogen in solution and regulate the solution of pH, which is one of the main problems in hydroponic production. The findings of our research will be used in hydroponic greenhouse farms to increase the fertility of vegetable crops and, consequently, to get bountiful and high-quality harvests, which will promote the development of hydroponic greenhouses in Georgia as well as abroad.
Anaerobic batch experiments were conducted to investigate the effect of magnetite-supplementation (7 mM) on methane production from digested sludge undergoing two different microbial growth phases, namely fresh sludge (exponential growth phase) and degassed sludge (endogenous decay phase). Three different particle sizes were assessed: small (50 - 150 nm), medium (168 – 490 nm) and large (800 nm - 4.5 µm) particles. Results show that, in the case of the fresh sludge, magnetite significantly enhanced the methane production rate (up to 32%) and reduced the lag phase (by 15% - 41%) as compared to the control, regardless of the particle size used. However, the cumulative methane produced at the end of the incubation was comparable in all treatment and control bottles. In the case of the degassed sludge, only the medium-sized magnetite particles increased significantly the methane production rate (12% higher) as compared to the control. Small and large particles had little effect on the methane production rate but did result in an extended lag phase which led to significantly lower cumulative methane production at the end of the incubation period. These results suggest that magnetite produces a clear and positive effect on methane production only when an active and balanced microbial community is present in the anaerobic digester. It is concluded that, (i) the effect of magnetite particle size on increasing the methane production rate and reducing lag phase duration is strongly influenced by the initial metabolic state of the microbial consortium, and (ii) the particle size would positively affect the methane production if it is provided within the nanometer size range.
In recent years, solar energy has established itself as one of the main sources of renewable energy, gaining a large space in electricity generation around the world. However, due to the low performance of photovoltaic panels, technologies need to be sought to maximize the production of electricity. In this regard, the present study aims to develop a prototype of solar tracker for didactics applications, controlled with the Arduino® platform, that enables the movement of photovoltaic plates in relation to the sun positions throughout the day through an electromechanical system, optimizing, thus, the efficiency of solar photovoltaic generation and improvements for the photovoltaic effect. The solar tracking technology developed in this work was presented of the shape oral and practical in two middle schools in the municipality of Mossoró/RN, being one of the public network and other of the private network, always keeping the average age of the students, in the case, around 16 years, contemplating an average of 60 students in each of the visits. Thus, it is concluded that the present study contributed substantially to the dissemination of knowledge concerning the photovoltaic solar generation, as well as the study of solar trackers, thus arousing the interest and curiosity of the students regarding the thematic approached.
This paper reports the production of uranium-molybdenum alloys, which have been considered promising fuel for test and research nuclear reactors. U-Mo alloys were produced in three molybdenum contents: 5 wt.%, 7 wt.%, and 10 wt.%, using an electric vacuum induction furnace. A boron nitride-coated graphite crucible was employed in the production of the alloys and, after melting, the material was immediately poured into a boron nitride-coated graphite mold. The incorporation of carbon was observed, but it happened in a lower intensity than in the case of the non-coated crucible/mold. It is observed that the carbon incorporation increased and alloys density decreased with Mo addition. It was also noticed that the increase in the carbon or molybdenum content did not seem to change the as-cast structure in terms of granulation. The three alloys presented body-centered cubic crystal structure (g phase), after solidification, besides a seeming negative microsegregation of molybdenum, from the center to the periphery of the grains. There were signs of macrosegregation, from the base to the top of the ingots.
High Voltage Substations (HVS) are the intermediate step between production of power and successfully transmitting it to clients, making them one of the most important checkpoints in power grids. Nowadays - renewable resources and consequently distributed generation are growing fast, the construction of HVS is of high importance both in terms of quality and time completion so that new energy producers can quickly and safely intergrade in power grids. The resources needed, such as machines and workers, should be carefully allocated so that the construction of a HVS is completed on time, with the lowest possible cost (e.g. not spending additional cost that were not taken into consideration, because of project delays), but in the highest quality. In addition, there are milestones and several checkpoints to be precisely achieved during construction to ensure the cost and timeline control and to ensure that the percentage of governmental funding will be granted. The management of such a demanding project is a NP-hard problem that consists of prerequisite constraints and resource limits for each task of the project. In this work, a hybrid meta-heuristic method is implemented to solve this problem. Meta-heuristics have been proven to be quite useful when dealing with high-dimensional constraint optimization problems. Hybridization of them results in boost of their performance.
This study presents a small-scale water pumping system utilizing a fuzzy logic inference system attached to a renewable energy source. The fuzzy logic controller was designed and simulated in MATLAB fuzzy logic toolbox to examine the properties and characteristics of the input and output variables. The result of the simulation was implemented in a microcontroller, together with sensors, modules, and photovoltaic cells. The study used a grand rapid variety of lettuce, organic substrates, and foliar for observation of the capability of the device to irrigate crops. Two plant boxes intended for manual and automated irrigation were prepared with each box having 48 heads of lettuce. The observation of the system took 22-31 days, which is one harvest period of the crop. Results showed a 22.55% increase in agricultural productivity compared to manual irrigation. Aside from reducing human effort, and time, the smart irrigation system could help lessen some of the shortcomings of manual irrigations. It could facilitate the economical utilization of water, reducing consumption by 25%. The use of renewable energy could also help farmers reduce the cost of production by minimizing the use of diesel and gasoline.
Nowadays, sustainable development issues have a key role in the planning of the man-made environment. Ensuring this development means limiting the impact of human activity on nature. It is essential to secure healthy places and good living conditions. For these reasons, indoor air quality and building materials play a fundamental role in sustainable architectural projects. These factors significantly affect human health: they can radically change the quality of the internal environment and energy consumption. The use of natural materials such as earth has many beneficial aspects in comfort and indoor air quality. As well as advantages in the environmental impact of the construction, they ensure a low energy consumption. Since they are already present in nature, their production and use do not require a high-energy consumption. Furthermore, they have a high thermo-hygrometric capacity, being able to absorb moisture, contributing positively to indoor conditions. Indoor air quality is closely related to relative humidity. For these reasons, it can be affirmed that the use of earth materials guarantees a sustainable development and at the same time improves the health of the building users. This paper summarizes several researches that demonstrate the importance of indoor air quality for human health and how it strictly depends on the building materials used. Eco-efficient plasters are also considered: earth and ash mortar. The bibliography consulted has the objective of supporting future experimental and laboratory analyzes. It is necessary to carry on with research by the use of simulations and testing to confirm the hygrothermal properties of eco-efficient plasters and therefore their ability to improve indoor air quality.
The article presents part of research on the development of nickel plated welding wire production technology, whose application will enable the elimination of the flaws of currently manufactured welding wires. The nickel plated welding wire will be distinguished by high quality, because the Ni layer which is deposited electrochemically onto it from acid baths is characterized by very good adhesion to the steel wire surface, while the ductile nickel well deforms plastically in the drawing process and the adhesion of the Ni layer increases in the drawing process due to the occurring process of diffusion between the Ni and the steel. The Ni layer obtained in the proposed technology, despite a smaller thickness than when the wire is coated with copper, is continuous and tight, thus ensuring high corrosion resistance, as well as unsusceptible to scaling, which should provide a product that meets requirements imposed by the market. The product will also reduce, to some extent, the amount of copper brought in to steel through recycling, while the wire coating nickel introduced to the weld in the welding process is expected, to a degree, to favorably influence its mechanical properties. The paper describes the tests of the process of nickel plating of f1.96 mm-diameter wires using various nickel plating baths with different process parameters.
There have been many reports of the destructive effects of cement on the environment in recent years. In the present research, it has been attempted to reduce the destructive effects of cement by replacing silica fume as adhesive materials instead of cement. The present study has attempted to improve the mechanical properties of cement slurry by using waste material from a glass production factory, located in Qazvin city of Iran, in which accumulation volume has become an environmental threat. The chemical analysis of the waste material indicates that this material contains about 94% of SiO2 and AL2O3 and has a close structure to silica fume. Also, the particle grain size test was performed on the mentioned waste. Then, the unconfined compressive strength test of the slurry was performed by preparing a mixture of water and adhesives with different percentages of cement and silica fume. The water to an adhesive ratio of this mixture is 1:3, and the curing process last 28 days. It was found that the sample had an unconfined compressive strength of about 300 kg/cm2 in a mixture with equal proportions of cement and silica fume. Besides, the sample had a brittle fracture in the slurry sample made of pure cement, however, the fracture in cement-silica fume slurry mixture is flexible and the structure of the specimen remains coherent after fracture. Therefore, considering the flexibility that is achieved by replacing this waste, it can be used to stabilize soils with cracking potential.
We have discovered an important technical solution that could make new approaches in the processing of wet silicon etching, especially in the production of photovoltaic cells. During its inferior light-trapping and structural properties, the inverted pyramid structure outperforms the conventional pyramid textures and black silicone. The traditional pyramid textures and black silicon can only be accomplished with more advanced lithography, laser processing, etc. Importantly, our data demonstrate the feasibility of an inverted pyramidal structure of silicon via one-step Cu-catalyzed chemical etching (CCCE) in Cu (NO3)2/HF/H2O2/H2O solutions. The effects of etching time and reaction temperature on surface geometry and light trapping were systematically investigated. The conclusion shows that the inverted pyramid structure has ultra-low reflectivity of ~4.2% in the wavelength of 300~1000 nm; introduce of Cu particles can significantly accelerate the dissolution of the silicon wafer. The etching and the inverted pyramid structure formation mechanism are discussed. Inverted pyramid structure with outstanding anti-reflectivity includes useful applications throughout the manufacture of semi-conductive industry-compatible solar cells, and can have significant impacts on industry colleagues and populations.
In order to face current compelling environmental problems affecting the planet, the construction industry needs to adapt. It is widely acknowledged that there is a need for durable, high-performance, low-greenhouse gas emission binders that can be used as an alternative to Portland cement (PC) to lower the environmental impact of construction. Alkali activated materials (AAMs) are considered a more sustainable alternative to PC materials. The binders of AAMs result from the reaction of an alkali metal source and a silicate powder or precursor which can be a calcium silicate or an aluminosilicate-rich material. This paper evaluates the particle size, specific surface area, chemical and mineral composition and amorphousness of silicate materials (most industrial waste locally produced in Ireland and Saudi Arabia) to develop alkali-activated binders that can replace PC resources in specific applications. These include recycled ceramic brick, bauxite, illitic clay, fly ash and metallurgical slag. According to the results, the wastes are reactive and comply with building standards requirements. The study also evidenced that the reactivity of the Saudi bauxite (with significant kaolinite) can be enhanced on thermal activation; and high calcium in the slag will promote reaction; which should be possible with low alkalinity activators. The wastes evidenced variable water demands that will be taken into account for mixing with the activators. Finally, further research is proposed to further determine the reactive fraction of the clay-based precursors.
Today, many local and national governments are developing urban agriculture as an effective tool in responding to challenges such as food security, poverty and environmental problems. In fact, urban agriculture plays an important role in food system, which can provide citizens' income and become one of the components of economic, social and environmental systems. The purpose of this paper is to analyze the urban agriculture and urban food systems in order to understand the impact of urban foods production on environmental planning in non-western city region context. To achieve such objective, we carry out a case study in Mashhad city of Iran by using qualitative approaches. A survey on documentary studies and planning tools integrate with face to face interview with experts which explain the role of food system in environmental planning process. The paper extends the use of food in the environmental planning, specifically to examine this role to create agricultural garden as a mean to improve agricultural system in non-western country. The paper is concluded with a set of recommendations for researchers and policymakers who seek to create spaces in order to implement urban agriculture in cities for food justice.
Dairy by-products are a fairly good environment for microorganisms due to their composition for their growth. Microbial populations have a significant impact in the production of cheese, butter, yogurt, etc. in terms of their organoleptic quality and at the same time some also cause their breakdown. In this paper, the microbiological contamination of soft cheese, butter and yogurt produced in the country (domestic) and imported is assessed, as an indicator of hygiene with impact on public health. The study was extended during September 2018-June 2019 and was divided into three periods, September-December, January-March, and April-June. During this study, a total of 120 samples were analyzed, of which 60 samples of cheese and butter locally produced, and 60 samples of imported soft cheese and butter productions. The microbial indicators analyzed are Staphylococcus aureus and E. coli. Analyzes have been conducted at the Food Safety Laboratory (FSIV) in Tirana in accordance with EU Regulation 2073/2005. Sampling was performed according to the specific international standards for these products (ISO 6887 and ISO 8261). Sampling and transport of samples were done under sterile conditions. Also, coding of samples was done to preserve the anonymity of subjects. After the analysis, the country's soft cheese products compared to imports were more contaminated with S. aureus and E. coli. Meanwhile, the imported butter samples that were analyzed, resulted within norms compared to domestic ones. Based on the results, it was concluded that the microbial quality of samples of cheese, butter and yogurt analyzed remains a real problem for hygiene in Albania. The study will also serve business operators in Albania to improve their work to ensure good hygiene on the basis of the HACCP plan and to provide a guarantee of consumer health.
Phosphorous is an important element for agriculture and industry and is a non-renewable resource. Especially, yellow phosphorus is an essential material in advanced industrial technology, but phosphorus resources were not produced in Japan at all, and all depend on imports. It has been suggested, however, that the remaining accessible reserves of phosphate ore will be depleted within 50 years. Therefore, alternative resources for phosphate ore must be found. In this research, we have developed a process that enables the production of high-purity yellow phosphorus from domestic unused phosphorus resources such as steelmaking slags. The process consists of two parts: (1) the production of crude phosphoric acid from wastes such as steelmaking slag; (2) producing high-purity yellow phosphorus by low-temperature carbothermic reduction of phosphoric acid (H3PO4). The details of the carbothermic reduction of phosphoric acid are presented in this paper. Yellow phosphorus is commercially produced by carbothermic reduction of phosphate ore in an electric arc furnace at more than 1673K. In the newly developed system, gaseous P4O10 evaporated from H3PO4 is successfully reduced to yellow phosphorus by using carbon packed bed at less than 1273K. To meet the depletion of phosphate ore, the proposed process in this study to produce yellow phosphorus by carbothermic reduction of H3PO4 that are extracted from dephosphorization slags will be one of the effective and economical solutions.
Recent rapid progress in ICT (Information and Communication Technology) has advanced the penetration of sensor networks (SNs) and their attractive applications. Agriculture is one of the fields well able to benefit from ICT. Plant factories control several parameters related to plant growth in closed areas such as air temperature, humidity, water, culture medium concentration, and artificial lighting by using computers and AI (Artificial Intelligence) is being researched in order to obtain stable and safe production of vegetables and medicinal plants all year anywhere, and attain self-sufficiency in food. By providing isolation from the natural environment, a plant factory can achieve higher productivity and safe products. However, the biggest issue with plant factories is the return on investment. Profits are tenuous because of the large initial investments and running costs, i.e. electric power, incurred. At present, LED (Light Emitting Diode) lights are being adopted because they are more energy-efficient and encourage photosynthesis better than the fluorescent lamps used in the past. However, further cost reduction is essential. This paper introduces experiments that reveal which color of LED lighting best enhances the growth of cultured radish sprouts. Radish sprouts were cultivated in the experimental environment formed by a hydroponics kit with three cultivation shelves (28 samples per shelf) each with an artificial lighting rack. Seven LED arrays of different color (white, blue, yellow green, green, yellow, orange, and red) were compared with a fluorescent lamp as the control. Lighting duration was set to 12 hours a day. Normal water with no fertilizer was circulated. Seven days after germination, the length, weight and area of leaf of each sample were measured. Electrical power consumption for all lighting arrangements was also measured. Results and discussions: As to average sample length, no clear difference was observed in terms of color. As regards weight, orange LED was less effective and the difference was significant (p < 0.05). As to leaf area, blue, yellow and orange LEDs were significantly less effective. However, all LEDs offered higher productivity per W consumed than the fluorescent lamp. Of the LEDs, the blue LED array attained the best results in terms of length, weight and area of leaf per W consumed. Conclusion and future works: An experiment on radish sprout cultivation under 7 different color LED arrays showed no clear difference in terms of sample size. However, if electrical power consumption is considered, LEDs offered about twice the growth rate of the fluorescent lamp. Among them, blue LEDs showed the best performance. Further cost reduction e.g. low power lighting remains a big issue for actual system deployment. An automatic plant monitoring system with sensors is another study target.
Electrical energy demand in the World and particularly in India, is increasing drastically more than its production over a period of time. In order to reduce the demand-supply gap, conserving energy becomes mandatory. Induction motors are the main driving force in the industries and contributes to about half of the total plant energy consumption. By effective monitoring and control of induction motors, huge electricity can be saved. This paper deals about the design and development of such a system, which employs iLON Smart Server and motor performance monitoring nodes. These nodes will monitor the performance of induction motors on-line, on-site and in-situ in the industries. The node monitors the performance of motors by simply measuring the electrical power input and motor shaft speed; coupled to genetic algorithm to estimate motor efficiency. The nodes are connected to the iLON Server through RS485 network. The web server collects the motor performance data from nodes, displays online, logs periodically, analyzes, alerts, and generates reports. The system could be effectively used to operate the motor around its Best Operating Point (BOP) as well as to perform the Life Cycle Assessment of Induction motors used in the industries in continuous operation.
This paper uses the analytic hierarchy process to study the execution effect of the minimum purchase price of grain in different regions and various grain crops. Firstly, for different regions, five indicators including grain yield, grain sown area, gross agricultural production, grain consumption price index, and disposable income of rural residents were selected to construct an evaluation index system. We collect data of six provinces including Hebei Province, Heilongjiang Province and Shandong Province from 2006 to 2017. Then, the judgment matrix is constructed, and the hierarchical single ordering and consistency test are carried out to determine the scoring standard for the minimum purchase price of grain. The ranking of the execution effect from high to low is: Heilongjiang Province, Shandong Province, Hebei Province, Guizhou Province, Shaanxi Province, and Guangdong Province. Secondly, taking Shandong Province as an example, we collect the relevant data of sown area and yield of cereals, beans, potatoes and other crops from 2006 to 2017. The weight of area and yield index is determined by expert scoring method. And the average sown area and yield of cereals, beans and potatoes in 2006-2017 were calculated, respectively. On this basis, according to the sum of products of weights and mean values, the execution effects of different grain crops are determined. It turns out that among the cereals, the minimum purchase price had the best execution effect on paddy, followed by wheat and finally maize. Moreover, among major categories of crops, cereals perform best, followed by beans and finally potatoes. Lastly, countermeasures are proposed for different regions, various categories of crops, and different crops of the same category.
In the past, we could increase profit by increasing product prices. But in the new decade, a competitive market does not let us to increase profit with increase prices. Therefore, the only way to increase profit will be reduce costs. A significant percentage of production costs are the maintenance costs, and analysis of these costs could achieve more profit. Most maintenance strategies such as RCM (Reliability-Center-Maintenance), TPM (Total Productivity Maintenance), PM (Preventive Maintenance) etc., are trying to reduce maintenance costs. In this paper, decreasing the maintenance costs of Concentration Plant of Golgohar Company (GEG) was examined by using of MTBF (Mean Time between Failures) and MTTR (Mean Time to Repair) analyses. These analyses showed that instead of buying new machines and increasing costs in order to promote capacity, the improving of MTBF and MTTR indexes would solve capacity problems in the best way and decrease costs.
Surface Mount Technology (SMT) is widely used in the area of the electronic assembly in which the electronic components are mounted to the surface of the printed circuit board (PCB). Most of the defects in the SMT process are mainly related to the quality of solder paste printing. These defects lead to considerable manufacturing costs in the electronics assembly industry. Therefore, the solder paste inspection (SPI) machine for controlling and monitoring the amount of solder paste printing has become an important part of the production process. So far, the setting of the SPI threshold is based on statistical analysis and experts’ experiences to determine the appropriate threshold settings. Because the production data are not normal distribution and there are various variations in the production processes, defects related to solder paste printing still occur. In order to solve this problem, this paper proposes an online machine learning algorithm, called the automatic threshold adjustment (ATA) algorithm, and closed-loop architecture in the SMT process to determine the best threshold settings. Simulation experiments prove that our proposed threshold settings improve the accuracy from 99.85% to 100%.
The aim of this study was to evaluate the dose- and time-dependent in vitro effects of berberine (BER), a natural alkaloid with numerous biological properties on bovine spermatozoa during three time periods (0 h, 2 h, 24 h). Bovine semen samples were diluted and cultivated in physiological saline solution containing 0.5% DMSO together with 200, 100, 50, 10, 5, and 1 μmol/L BER. Spermatozoa motility was assessed using the computer assisted semen analyzer. The viability of spermatozoa was assessed by the metabolic (MTT) assay, production of superoxide radicals was quantified using the nitroblue tetrazolium (NBT) test, and chemiluminescence was used to evaluate the generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS). Cell lysates were prepared and the extent of lipid peroxidation (LPO) was evaluated using the TBARS assay. The results of the movement activity showed a significant increase in the motility during long term cultivation in case of concentrations ranging between 1 and 10 μmol/L BER (P < 0.01; P < 0.001; 24 h). At the same time, supplementation of 1, 5 and 10 μmol/L BER led to a significant preservation of the cell viability (P < 0.001; 24 h). BER addition at a range of 1-50 μmol/L also provided a significantly higher protection against superoxide (P < 0.05) and ROS (P < 0.001; P < 0.01) overgeneration as well as LPO (P < 0.01; P<0.05) after a 24 h cultivation. We may suggest that supplementation of BER to bovine spermatozoa, particularly at concentrations ranging between 1 and 50 μmol/L, may offer protection to the motility, viability and oxidative status of the spermatozoa, particularly notable at 24 h.
The production of number forms in English tends to be problematic for Iraqi learners of English as a foreign language (EFL), even at the undergraduate level. To help better understand and consequently address this problem, it is important to identify its sources. This study aims at: (1) statistically analysing Iraqi EFL undergraduates' performance in the production of number forms in English; (2) classifying learners' errors in terms of their possible major causes; and (3) outlining some pedagogical recommendations relevant to the teaching of number forms in English. It is hypothesized in this study that (1) Iraqi EFL undergraduates still face problems in the production of number forms in English and (2) errors pertaining to the context of learning are more numerous than those attributable to the other possible causes. After reviewing the literature available on the topic, a written test comprising 50 items has been constructed and administered to a randomly chosen sample of 50 second-year college students from the Department of English, College of Education, Wasit University. The findings of the study showed that Iraqi EFL undergraduates still face problems in the production of number forms in English and that the possible major sources of learners’ errors can be arranged hierarchically in terms of the percentages of errors to which they can be ascribed as follows: (1) context of learning (50%), (2) intralingual transfer (37%), and (3) interlingual transfer (13%). It is hoped that the implications of the study findings will be beneficial to researchers, syllabus designers, as well as teachers of English as a foreign/second language.