Open Access Original Research Article

Evaluation of the Number of Load Cycles to Determine Some Wood Stiffness Properties

Elen Aparecida Martines Morales, Diego Henrique de Almeida, André Luis Christoforo, Tulio Hallak Panzera, Francisco Antonio Rocco Lahr

Current Journal of Applied Science and Technology, Page 1-7
DOI: 10.9734/CJAST/2018/43486

For fiber accommodation in tests to obtain wood strength and stiffness properties, some standards codes provide two or more load cycles, such as the Brazilian Standard ABNT NBR 7190, which establishes a number of three cycles (two previous and the final load cycle). However, reducing the number of load cycles provides savings in energy and manpower in the operation and maintenance of the testing machines, which motivates the development of research on this topic. This study aimed to investigate, according to Brazilian Standard Code and analysis of variance (ANOVA), the influence of the number of load cycles (1, 2, 3) to determine the modulus of elasticity in compression (Ec0) and tension (Et0) in parallel direction to the grain, in normal compression (Ec90) and in static bending (Em) for the native Brazilian species Cambará Rosa, Cupiúba, Envira, Angico and Champagne woods, allowing, with the use of wood evenly distributed on strength classes, the results to be extended to other wood species. Results of the Tukey test show that only the first load cycle presented different stiffness values, with the second and third load cycles giving equivalent results of modulus of elasticity. This implies that the third load cycle can be disregarded, and stiffness properties can be obtained after only with the second load cycle.

Open Access Original Research Article

Laboratory Study of a Lignocellulosic Biomass as an Alternative Base Material for Brake Pads

Tiamiyu Ishola Mohammed, Olatunji Oladimeji Ojo, Olaitan Ezekiel Olufemi

Current Journal of Applied Science and Technology, Page 1-14
DOI: 10.9734/CJAST/2018/43332

This research work assesses the possibility of using sawdust as a base material for the production of light load brake pad by studying the physical, mechanical and microstructural properties of the developed sawdust-based pads. Different proportions of Afara/Terminalia superba sawdust, slag waste dust, silicon carbide, epoxy resin, and graphite were used to form the polymeric matrix composites as eco-friendly brake pads. Compressive strength, hardness, wear, flame resistance, porosity, density and water absorption of the brake pads were investigated. Clustered particulates of sawdust were formed in the brake pad as the weight percentage of sawdust exceeded 40 owing to the low molecular weight and the particle-to-particle cohesive ability of wood dust. The increase in the particle size of sawdust has an inverse relationship with the hardness value and the wear rate of the developed brake pad. Silicon carbide directly improves the hardness value, the wear rate and the strength of the brake pad. The compressive strength of the brake pad is impeded as the weight percentage of sawdust is increased. An optimum strength of about 126 kPa was achieved with the particle size of 100 μm. The total ash content of the brake pad has a direct correlation with the weight percentage of sawdust. It can be concluded that a lignocellulosic biomass (like wood dust) is a suitable base material for the development of light load brake pads owing to the vulnerability of the pads to generate high ash content.

Open Access Original Research Article

A Psychological Evaluation of a Competition-based Learning Environment

Tianzhen Wang, Zhichao Li, Yongchao Ding, Xiaopai Duan, Christophe Claramunt

Current Journal of Applied Science and Technology, Page 1-13
DOI: 10.9734/CJAST/2018/43622

This paper introduces a psychological analysis of the behavior of a group-based project. This approach is based on an experimental study of a car lab competition. Several cognitive and physical criteria have been self-evaluated by the student members of the competition teams, and recorded on a daily basis prior to the competition. The results reveal a series of significant patterns that outline some noteworthy relationships between the final competition outcome and some cognitive states such as expectation, investment, stress and fitness. The novelty of the approach lies in the development of an observation framework at a low level of abstraction, and that provides a complementary psychological and physical monitoring system for the full benefits of both students and teachers. Another important outcome is that clearly this kind of project learning and proactive environment favor the development of hands-on and collaboration skills.

Open Access Original Research Article

Effect of Integrated Natural Mineral Compound and Farm-yard Manure Soil Fertilizer on Wheat Crop Yield versus Chemical Fertilizer

A. A. El-Metwally, M. A. Abdel-Rahman, Y. M. Ibrahim

Current Journal of Applied Science and Technology, Page 1-11
DOI: 10.9734/CJAST/2018/43215

Aims: The great challenge is how to create and secure natural component derived from natural elements that can be used as mineral fertilizer sources and have a superior "residual effect" compared with the chemical fertilizers in agricultural systems. Also, to attain high productivity with lower costs relative to chemical (control) treatment, to upgrade and maintain the soil productivity and to improve the nutrient reserve in soil.

Methods: The production of the natural mineral soil fertilizer is fundamentally depending on the special mixture. It includes phosphate, feldspars, dolomite, gypsum, sulphur and ores of manganese, copper and iron, pyrite, sphalerite, magnetite and rare earth elements bearing minerals, as well as some clay minerals and other micronutrients. The experiment was done at clay-loamy soil on two treatments; 1- chemical fertilizer (Control), and 2- integrated farmyard nutrient (FYN) with Natural Minerals Compound (NMC) for growing wheat crop. Measurements was done on two steps during two seasons of wheat cultivation

Results: The growth parameters after ten weeks of sowing show greater results under treatment with the integrated farmyard manure and Natural Mineral Compound related to the control one. The growth parameters include: plant height, number of branches, number of leaves, leaf and total leaves area, crown diameter, stem diameter, internode length and root (length and width). At harvest time, the results indicate an increase of 32% of wheat grain yield compared to the control treatment.

Conclusion: The integrated NMC and FYN are more economically attractive; they have reasonable price and can reduce the costs of wheat production by 25% compared to the control treatment. This application will give safe products for users, increase benefits (e.g. higher productivity, lower production cost) and reduce the impacts on the environment.

Open Access Original Research Article

Development and Performance Evaluation of Manually Operated Seedling Planter for Horticultural Crops

Korla Harshavardhan, Atul Kumar Shrivastava

Current Journal of Applied Science and Technology, Page 1-8
DOI: 10.9734/CJAST/2018/43833

A low cost manually operated single row vegetable seedling planter was developed for transplanting of plug and pot type vegetable seedlings on ridges and mulch beds. It consisted of jaw assembly, delivery pipe, lever, handle and spacing marker. Operating principle of the developed transplanter involves the raising the transplanter up to one feet height and allow to free fall in the soil, dropping the seedling in the seedling delivery tube, pressing the lever in upward direction which enable the jaw to open the soil and seedling was placed in the soil by gravity and lifting the transplanter with open jaw and close the after raising the transplanter by one feet height. It was evaluated for inter and intra-row spacings of 45×45 cm. Manual transplanting on plastic mulch beds (MPMB) was compared with developed transplanter on plastic mulch beds (TPMB). The transplanting rate using single labour was found to be 5 and 12 seedlings /min for MPMB and TPMB respectively. The field capacity was calculated as 0.0031 and 0.0166 for MPMB and TPMB. Similarly, field efficiency was 21-28% and 42-57%. Moreover, cost of operation (Rs/ha) in was found to be 9218 and 1753Rs/ha. The time saving over manual transplanting is 80.96% by using seedling planter. The weight of developed transplanter is 2.4 kg and cost is Rs. 500. It is completely made up of stainless steel Developed vegetable transplanter found more suitable for vegetable transplanting as compare to traditional method of manual transplanting. The aim of this study is to reduce the human effort, to increase the field efficiency, to reduce the cost of operation and to increase the field capacity while planting horticultural crops.

Open Access Original Research Article

Dimensioning of a Water Pumping System by the Systematic Scanning Method

Guy Clarence Semassou, Vincent Prodjinonto, Victorin Chegnimonhan, Emile Sanya, Antoine Vianou

Current Journal of Applied Science and Technology, Page 1-15
DOI: 10.9734/CJAST/2018/43842

This paper presents the design of a wind pumping system coupled to a reservoir of water storage. The objective functions used in the design process are the loss of power probability (LPSP) concept for the reliability, the life cycle cost (LCC) for the economic evaluation and the CO2 emissions of life cycle regarding the processing of the various components of the system. The presented model, allows an optimised design of wind pumping system taking into account technical, economic and environmental criteria while ensuring the needs of the consumer without interruption. The optimisation is based on a systematic scanning approach that makes it possible to generate without restriction all the candidate solutions. The design variables considered are the wind turbines number (NW), the type of wind (TW), the tank number (Ntank), the type of tank (Ttank), type mast (Ttower) and the total head (Thead), that is to say, the type of well. A case study is conducted to analyse one wind turbine pumping project. The system is designed to supply drinking water in a rural community located at Sèmè-Kpodji, Benin (6°22’N, 2°37’E, 7m). The ten best solutions are presented and the one with the greatest desirability is a set of 11 wind turbines and 4 storage tanks (a 36.4% ratio) of type (1), with an initial investment cost of 27368 US dollars and a water shedding rate (LPSP) of 9.55%.

Open Access Review Article

Nutrient Management in High Density Apple Orchards – A Review

Shabnam Ahad, Mohd. Maqbool Mir, Shahida Ashraf, Sumaya Mumtaz, Mehnigaar Hamid

Current Journal of Applied Science and Technology, Page 1-16
DOI: 10.9734/CJAST/2018/42568

All plants require a sufficient supply of essential nutrients to reach their potential, and deficiency of any single nutrient is enough to limit yield. Supply of adequate quantities of nutrients is essential for sustainable high yield and good quality fruits over a long period. The nutritional requirements are different during the vegetative and reproductive growth stages, thus these requirements must be met as per their needs. Nutritional requirements are ascertained through soil chemical analysis, leaf analysis and loss of nutrients through crop production. Due to the effective role of macro and micronutrients in orchard productivity, nutrient management has become as important as other cultural practices in high density orchards. Nutrient management is simply based on 4R's concept i.e right source, right rate, right time and right method. The phenological period and frequency of uptake determine the application time and the quantity of nutrient to be applied. Different methods of fertilization are used in fruit production, including fertilization with mineral fertilizers (conventional type), fertigation, foliar nutrition and a range of other methods. Due to various reasons, in high density orchards priority is given to fertigation and foliar nutrition. The high effectiveness of fertigation results from the possibility of applying optimal concentrations of fertilizing solutions and a higher root density in the wetted soil volume. Plant nutrient availability and their uptake rely upon various factors like soil texture, pH, temperature and moisture, maintaining all these factors is an important goal of orchard nutrient management programme. A better understanding of nutrient interactions is essential in understanding the importance of balanced supply of nutrients. Nutrient use efficiency in orchards can be improved by making the use of controlled release fertilizers (CRF’s), biofertilizers and enhancing the use of organic matter.