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A novel approach for assuring and following inoculum activity during kefir grains growth studies : application of dynamic pH profiles
Marko Tramšek, Andreja Goršek, 2007, original scientific article

Abstract: The profiles of kefir grains growth curves strongly depend on bioprocess conditions and inoculum viability. Therefore, accurate growth curve studies require the use of optimally active kefir grains as inoculum. Accordingly, the main objective of our study was experimental optimization of classic kefir grains activation procedure and afterwards, comparison among growth curves of differently activated kefir grains. For this purpose some experiments were initially performed in computer-controlled RC1 reactor provided data of dynamic pH profiles during batch propagation of differently activated grains. Experimental data were mathematically analyzed and using the special methodology of minimizing the absolute deviation of pH(t) profiles the minimal time for grains activation was determined. We established that optimal inoculum activity could be ensured only by the kefir grains, which were previously activated at least over eleven successive days. In the second part of research the growth curve of optimally activated kefir grains was constructed using experimental measurements and fitted with Gompertz model. The present results were compared with the results obtained by our previous study, where classically activated grains were used. We established that, inspite of equal daily kefir grain mass increase, considerable difference in growth curves of differently activated kefir grains exist.
Keywords: chemical processing, kefir grains, growth curve, minimal activation time, dynamic pH profiles, Gompertz model
Published: 31.05.2012; Views: 1142; Downloads: 48
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Factors impacting on the activation and approach times of helicopter emergency medical services in four Alpine countries
Iztok Tomazin, Miljana Vegnuti, John Ellerton, Oliver Reisten, Guenther Sumann, Janko Kersnik, 2012, original scientific article

Abstract: Background: The outcome of severely injured or ill patients can be time dependent. Short activation and approach times for emergency medical service (EMS) units are widely recognized to be important quality indicators. The use of a helicopter emergency medical service (HEMS) can significantly shorten rescue missions especially in mountainous areas. We aimed to analyze the HEMS characteristics that influence the activation and approach times. Methods: In a multi-centre retrospective study, we analyzed 6121 rescue missions from nineHEMS bases situated in mountainous regions of four European countries. Results: We found large differences in mean activation and approach times among HEMS bases. The shortest mean activation time was 2.9 minutes; the longest 17.0 minutes. The shortest mean approach time was 10.4 minutes; the longest 45.0 minutes. Short times are linked (p < 0.001) to the following conditions: helicopter operator is not state owned; HEMS is integrated in EMS; all crew members are at the same location; doctors come from state or private health institutions; organization performing HEMS is privately owned; helicopters are only for HEMS; operation area is around 10.000 km2; HEMS activation is by a dispatching centre of regional government who is in charge of making decisions; there is only one intermediator in the emergency call; helicopter is equipped with hoist or fixed line; HEMS has more than one base with helicopters, and one team per base; closest neighboring base is 90 km away; HEMS is about 20 years old and has more than 650 missions per year; and modern helicopters are used. Conclusions: An improvement in HEMS activation and approach times is possible. We found 17 factors associated with shorter times.
Keywords: emergency medical services, air ambulances, emergency helicopters, quality of health care, activation and approach time
Published: 29.06.2017; Views: 597; Downloads: 182
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Zeolitization characteristics of fly ashes from wet- and dry- disposal systems
Bhagwanjee Jha, D. N. Singh, 2012, original scientific article

Abstract: The fly ash disposal at thermal power plants is either through wet- or dry-disposal systems. As these disposal practices result in different characteristics for the fly ashes, their interaction with alkalis, and hence the zeolitization potential, will be different. In order to demonstrate this, investigations were conducted to study the physical, chemical, mineralogical and morphological characteristics of the residues of the fly ashes collected from the lagoons and hoppers of the same thermal power plant, after their hydrothermal treatment. Field-emission-gun scanning electron microscopy and X-ray diffraction analysis of these residues demonstrated that the hopper ash attains an exceptionally high cation-exchange capacity and $SiO_2/Al_2O_3$ ratios (SAR), which correspond to the formation of major fly ash zeolites as compared to its counterpart. In other words, the study presented here helps to establish the superiority of hopper ash over lagoon ash for synthesizing fly ash zeolites and their enhanced quantity and quality.
Keywords: alkali activation, lagoon ash, hopper ash, fly ash zeolites
Published: 13.06.2018; Views: 268; Downloads: 52
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Formation of meso- and micro-pores in fly-ash zeolites using a three-step activation
Bhagwanjee Jha, D. N. Singh, 2014, original scientific article

Abstract: Researchers have comprehensively characterized alkali- activated fly-ash (the residue) and ascertained its highly zeolitic nature. In order to evaluate its potential for application as an adsorbent for the decontamination of waste water, the decisive parameters have mostly been the cation-exchange capacity, the mineralogy and the morphology of the residue. However, a study of the pore characteristics (e.g., the size and volume) of such residues is still warranted to anticipate their contaminant transport and the diffusion phenomena as a type of geotechnical engineering material. In this situation, the present study demonstrates the evolution of pores in the fly-ash after alkali activation up to three steps, and simultaneously, its effects` on other characteristics (e.g., the specific gravity, specific surface area and the cation-exchange capacity) of three types of similarly synthesized residues (the first, produced by using a NaOH aqueous solution and the other two residues, the result of alkali activation using a NaOH spent solution, the filtrates). Based on N2 gas absorption isotherms and infrared transmittance spectra, residues obtained from the second and third steps, each involving 24 hours of treatment using filtrates of 1.5-M NaOH, are established to be significantly enriched in the finer meso- and micro-pores, respectively, in comparison with a pure and macro-porous zeolite 4A.
Keywords: fly-ash, hydrothermal treatment, three-step activation, pore characteristics
Published: 14.06.2018; Views: 205; Downloads: 38
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