Science.gov

Sample records for sustainable micro products

  1. Sustainable hydrogen production

    SciTech Connect

    Block, D.L.; Linkous, C.; Muradov, N.

    1996-01-01

    This report describes the Sustainable Hydrogen Production research conducted at the Florida Solar Energy Center (FSEC) for the past year. The report presents the work done on the following four tasks: Task 1--production of hydrogen by photovoltaic-powered electrolysis; Task 2--solar photocatalytic hydrogen production from water using a dual-bed photosystem; Task 3--development of solid electrolytes for water electrolysis at intermediate temperatures; and Task 4--production of hydrogen by thermocatalytic cracking of natural gas. For each task, this report presents a summary, introduction/description of project, and results.

  2. Holistic sustainable development: Floor-layers and micro-enterprises.

    PubMed

    Lortie, Monique; Nadeau, Sylvie; Vezeau, Steve

    2016-11-01

    Attracting and retaining workers is important to ensuring the sustainability of floor laying businesses, which are for the most part micro-enterprises (MiE). The aim of this paper is to shed light on the challenges MiE face in OHS implementation in the context of sustainable development. Participative ergonomics and user-centred design approaches were used. The material collected was reviewed to better understand the floor layers' viewpoints on sustainability. The solutions that were retained and the challenges encountered to make material handling and physical work easier and to develop training and a website are presented. The importance of OHS as a sustainability factor, its structuring effect, what distinguishes MiE from small businesses and possible strategies for workings with them are also discussed. PMID:26860740

  3. Holistic sustainable development: Floor-layers and micro-enterprises.

    PubMed

    Lortie, Monique; Nadeau, Sylvie; Vezeau, Steve

    2016-11-01

    Attracting and retaining workers is important to ensuring the sustainability of floor laying businesses, which are for the most part micro-enterprises (MiE). The aim of this paper is to shed light on the challenges MiE face in OHS implementation in the context of sustainable development. Participative ergonomics and user-centred design approaches were used. The material collected was reviewed to better understand the floor layers' viewpoints on sustainability. The solutions that were retained and the challenges encountered to make material handling and physical work easier and to develop training and a website are presented. The importance of OHS as a sustainability factor, its structuring effect, what distinguishes MiE from small businesses and possible strategies for workings with them are also discussed.

  4. Developing micro-level urban ecosystem indicators for sustainability assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Dizdaroglu, Didem

    2015-09-15

    Sustainability assessment is increasingly being viewed as an important tool to aid in the shift towards sustainable urban ecosystems. An urban ecosystem is a dynamic system and requires regular monitoring and assessment through a set of relevant indicators. An indicator is a parameter which provides information about the state of the environment by producing a quantitative value. Indicator-based sustainability assessment needs to be considered on all spatial scales to provide efficient information of urban ecosystem sustainability. The detailed data is necessary to assess environmental change in urban ecosystems at local scale and easily transfer this information to the national and global scales. This paper proposes a set of key micro-level urban ecosystem indicators for monitoring the sustainability of residential developments. The proposed indicator framework measures the sustainability performance of urban ecosystem in 3 main categories including: natural environment, built environment, and socio-economic environment which are made up of 9 sub-categories, consisting of 23 indicators. This paper also describes theoretical foundations for the selection of each indicator with reference to the literature [Turkish] Highlights: • As the impacts of environmental problems have multi-scale characteristics, sustainability assessment needs to be considered on all scales. • The detailed data is necessary to assess local environmental change in urban ecosystems to provide insights into the national and global scales. • This paper proposes a set of key micro-level urban ecosystem indicators for monitoring the sustainability of residential developments. • This paper also describes theoretical foundations for the selection of each indicator with reference to the literature.

  5. Sustainable food consumption. Product choice or curtailment?

    PubMed

    Verain, Muriel C D; Dagevos, Hans; Antonides, Gerrit

    2015-08-01

    Food consumption is an important factor in shaping the sustainability of our food supply. The present paper empirically explores different types of sustainable food behaviors. A distinction between sustainable product choices and curtailment behavior has been investigated empirically and predictors of the two types of behavior have been identified. Respondents were classified into four segments based on their sustainable food behaviors: unsustainers, curtailers, product-oriented consumers, and sustainers. Significant differences between the segments were found with regard to food choice motives, personal and social norms, food involvement, subjective knowledge on sustainable food, ability to judge how sustainably a product has been produced and socio-demographics. It is concluded that distinguishing between behavioral strategies toward sustainable food consumption is important as consumer segments can be identified that differ both in their level of sustainable food consumption and in the type of behavior they employ.

  6. Sustainable food consumption. Product choice or curtailment?

    PubMed

    Verain, Muriel C D; Dagevos, Hans; Antonides, Gerrit

    2015-08-01

    Food consumption is an important factor in shaping the sustainability of our food supply. The present paper empirically explores different types of sustainable food behaviors. A distinction between sustainable product choices and curtailment behavior has been investigated empirically and predictors of the two types of behavior have been identified. Respondents were classified into four segments based on their sustainable food behaviors: unsustainers, curtailers, product-oriented consumers, and sustainers. Significant differences between the segments were found with regard to food choice motives, personal and social norms, food involvement, subjective knowledge on sustainable food, ability to judge how sustainably a product has been produced and socio-demographics. It is concluded that distinguishing between behavioral strategies toward sustainable food consumption is important as consumer segments can be identified that differ both in their level of sustainable food consumption and in the type of behavior they employ. PMID:25913683

  7. Replicated micro-optics for multimedia products

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salt, Martin; Rossi, Markus

    2006-04-01

    Advances in design, materials and production technology for micro-optical components have led to strong growth in their use in today's consumer products. In particular, micro-optical components produced by replication technologies such as UV embossing can now withstand the severe processing and environmental requirements of the consumer electronics industry, including lead-free IR reflow and thermal shock. With their small size and low weight, as well as the possibility of optical function not achievable by conventional optics, micro-optical components and systems are finding applications in a wide variety of products. In the field of multimedia, novel designs and new production techniques are enabling applications in key areas such as illumination and display. The extreme compactness of micro-optical components, with typical thickness under 1 mm and footprints of only some millimeters square, makes them a natural candidate for consumer products such as mobile phones, pocket projectors and displays. Advances in UV embossing technology, enabling micro-optics to be mounted over various light sources in a variety of different ways, also allow extremely compact opto-electronic modules to be realized at highly competitive prices. In this paper we summarize recent technology developments and describe a number of multimedia applications utilizing state-of-the-art micro-optics.

  8. MicroResearch--Finding sustainable solutions to local health challenges in East Africa.

    PubMed

    Kollmann, Tobias R; Bortolussi, Robert; MacDonald, Noni E

    2015-06-01

    The urgent need in Africa for research capacity building has been recognized by African leaders and governments for many years. However, lack of large research funding opportunities has been seen as a major obstacle to improving research capacity in precisely those countries that need it the most. Microfinance has shown that a small infusion of capital can "prime the pump" to creative local economic productivity. In a similar way, MicroResearch has proven effective in promoting a similar bottom-up strategy to find sustainable solutions to local health challenges through local community focused research. Specifically, MicroResearch through hands-on didactic courses, mentoring and small-scale research funding promotes small research projects that improve research skills across the entire health-care provider spectrum to unleash a culture of inquiry. This in turn stimulates health care providers to identify the locally most relevant obstacles that need to be overcome and implement locally feasible and sustainable solutions. MicroResearch is a bottom-up strategy proven effective at finding sustainable solutions to local health challenges.

  9. Sustainability Analysis for Products and Processes

    EPA Science Inventory

    Sustainability Analysis for Products and Processes Subhas K. Sikdar National Risk Management Research Laboratory United States Environmental protection Agency 26 W. M.L. King Dr. Cincinnati, OH 45237 Sikdar.subhas@epa.gov ABSTRACT Claims of both sustainable and unsu...

  10. Product Lifecycle Management and Sustainable Space Exploration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Caruso, Pamela W.; Dumbacher, Daniel L.; Grieves, Michael

    2011-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews the use of product lifecycle management (PLM) in the general aerospace industry, its use and development at NASA and at Marshall Space Flight Center, and how the use of PLM can lead to sustainable space exploration.

  11. A thermally self-sustained micro-power plant with integrated micro-solid oxide fuel cells, micro-reformer and functional micro-fluidic carrier

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scherrer, Barbara; Evans, Anna; Santis-Alvarez, Alejandro J.; Jiang, Bo; Martynczuk, Julia; Galinski, Henning; Nabavi, Majid; Prestat, Michel; Tölke, René; Bieberle-Hütter, Anja; Poulikakos, Dimos; Muralt, Paul; Niedermann, Philippe; Dommann, Alex; Maeder, Thomas; Heeb, Peter; Straessle, Valentin; Muller, Claude; Gauckler, Ludwig J.

    2014-07-01

    Low temperature micro-solid oxide fuel cell (micro-SOFC) systems are an attractive alternative power source for small-size portable electronic devices due to their high energy efficiency and density. Here, we report on a thermally self-sustainable reformer-micro-SOFC assembly. The device consists of a micro-reformer bonded to a silicon chip containing 30 micro-SOFC membranes and a functional glass carrier with gas channels and screen-printed heaters for start-up. Thermal independence of the device from the externally powered heater is achieved by exothermic reforming reactions above 470 °C. The reforming reaction and the fuel gas flow rate of the n-butane/air gas mixture controls the operation temperature and gas composition on the micro-SOFC membrane. In the temperature range between 505 °C and 570 °C, the gas composition after the micro-reformer consists of 12 vol.% to 28 vol.% H2. An open-circuit voltage of 1.0 V and maximum power density of 47 mW cm-2 at 565 °C is achieved with the on-chip produced hydrogen at the micro-SOFC membranes.

  12. Evaluation Product : Micro-ARSCL

    SciTech Connect

    Michael Jensen

    2014-07-31

    Microscale data product based on the increased temporal resolution of the MMCRs which includes information about the local maxima in each Doppler spectrum, uncertainty estimates for the Doppler moments of the primary peak, Doppler moment shape parameters (e.g., skewness and kurtosis), and more accurate identification of radar clutter.

  13. Towards Sustainable Production of Biofuels from Microalgae

    PubMed Central

    Patil, Vishwanath; Tran, Khanh-Quang; Giselrød, Hans Ragnar

    2008-01-01

    Renewable and carbon neutral biofuels are necessary for environmental and economic sustainability. The viability of the first generation biofuels production is however questionable because of the conflict with food supply. Microalgal biofuels are a viable alternative. The oil productivity of many microalgae exceeds the best producing oil crops. This paper aims to analyze and promote integration approaches for sustainable microalgal biofuel production to meet the energy and environmental needs of the society. The emphasis is on hydrothermal liquefaction technology for direct conversion of algal biomass to liquid fuel. PMID:19325798

  14. Sustainable approach toward synthesis of green functional carbonaceous 3-D micro/nanostructures from biomass

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    This study proposes a novel technique to synthesize functional carbonaceous three-dimensional (3-D) micro/nanocompounds from agricultural by-products using femtosecond laser irradiation. Biowastes of rice husk and wheat straw are value-engineered to carbonaceous structures in a single-step process under ambient conditions. Our results demonstrate that by controlling the laser fluence, structures with a variety of different morphologies from nanostructures to microstructures can be achieved. Also, the results indicate that altering the laser processing parameters influences the chemical composition of the synthesized structures. This sustainable approach presents an important step towards synthesizing 3-D micro/nanofibrous compounds from biowaste materials. These structures, as-synthesized or as nanocomposite fillers, can have practical uses in electronic, sensing, biological, and environmental applications. PMID:23924310

  15. Sustainable approach toward synthesis of green functional carbonaceous 3-D micro/nanostructures from biomass.

    PubMed

    Tavangar, Amirhossein; Tan, Bo; Venkatakrishnan, Krishnan

    2013-01-01

    This study proposes a novel technique to synthesize functional carbonaceous three-dimensional (3-D) micro/nanocompounds from agricultural by-products using femtosecond laser irradiation. Biowastes of rice husk and wheat straw are value-engineered to carbonaceous structures in a single-step process under ambient conditions. Our results demonstrate that by controlling the laser fluence, structures with a variety of different morphologies from nanostructures to microstructures can be achieved. Also, the results indicate that altering the laser processing parameters influences the chemical composition of the synthesized structures. This sustainable approach presents an important step towards synthesizing 3-D micro/nanofibrous compounds from biowaste materials. These structures, as-synthesized or as nanocomposite fillers, can have practical uses in electronic, sensing, biological, and environmental applications. PMID:23924310

  16. Sustainable approach toward synthesis of green functional carbonaceous 3-D micro/nanostructures from biomass

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tavangar, Amirhossein; Tan, Bo; Venkatakrishnan, Krishnan

    2013-08-01

    This study proposes a novel technique to synthesize functional carbonaceous three-dimensional (3-D) micro/nanocompounds from agricultural by-products using femtosecond laser irradiation. Biowastes of rice husk and wheat straw are value-engineered to carbonaceous structures in a single-step process under ambient conditions. Our results demonstrate that by controlling the laser fluence, structures with a variety of different morphologies from nanostructures to microstructures can be achieved. Also, the results indicate that altering the laser processing parameters influences the chemical composition of the synthesized structures. This sustainable approach presents an important step towards synthesizing 3-D micro/nanofibrous compounds from biowaste materials. These structures, as-synthesized or as nanocomposite fillers, can have practical uses in electronic, sensing, biological, and environmental applications.

  17. Sustainable Multi-Product Seafood Production Planning Under Uncertainty

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simanjuntak, Ruth; Sembiring, Monalisa; Sinaga, Rani; Pakpahan, Endang J.; Mawengkang, Herman

    2013-04-01

    A multi-product fish production planning produces simultaneously multi fish products from several classes of raw resources. The goal in sustainable production planning is to meet customer demand over a fixed time horizon divided into planning periods by optimizing the tradeoff between economic objectives such as production cost, waste processed cost, and customer satisfaction level. The major decisions are production and inventory levels for each product and the number of workforce in each planning period. In this paper we consider the management of small scale traditional business at North Sumatera Province which performs processing fish into several local seafood products. The inherent uncertainty of data (e.g. demand, fish availability), together with the sequential evolution of data over time leads the sustainable production planning problem to a nonlinear mixed-integer stochastic programming model. We use scenario generation based approach and feasible neighborhood search for solving the model.

  18. Sustainability of three apple production systems.

    PubMed

    Reganold, J P; Glover, J D; Andrews, P K; Hinman, H R

    2001-04-19

    Escalating production costs, heavy reliance on non-renewable resources, reduced biodiversity, water contamination, chemical residues in food, soil degradation and health risks to farm workers handling pesticides all bring into question the sustainability of conventional farming systems. It has been claimed, however, that organic farming systems are less efficient, pose greater health risks and produce half the yields of conventional farming systems. Nevertheless, organic farming became one of the fastest growing segments of US and European agriculture during the 1990s. Integrated farming, using a combination of organic and conventional techniques, has been successfully adopted on a wide scale in Europe. Here we report the sustainability of organic, conventional and integrated apple production systems in Washington State from 1994 to 1999. All three systems gave similar apple yields. The organic and integrated systems had higher soil quality and potentially lower negative environmental impact than the conventional system. When compared with the conventional and integrated systems, the organic system produced sweeter and less tart apples, higher profitability and greater energy efficiency. Our data indicate that the organic system ranked first in environmental and economic sustainability, the integrated system second and the conventional system last. PMID:11309616

  19. Climate change and sustainable food production.

    PubMed

    Smith, Pete; Gregory, Peter J

    2013-02-01

    One of the greatest challenges we face in the twenty-first century is to sustainably feed nine to ten billion people by 2050 while at the same time reducing environmental impact (e.g. greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, biodiversity loss, land use change and loss of ecosystem services). To this end, food security must be delivered. According to the United Nations definition, 'food security exists when all people, at all times, have physical and economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food to meet their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life'. At the same time as delivering food security, we must also reduce the environmental impact of food production. Future climate change will make an impact upon food production. On the other hand, agriculture contributes up to about 30% of the anthropogenic GHG emissions that drive climate change. The aim of this review is to outline some of the likely impacts of climate change on agriculture, the mitigation measures available within agriculture to reduce GHG emissions and outlines the very significant challenge of feeding nine to ten billion people sustainably under a future climate, with reduced emissions of GHG. Each challenge is in itself enormous, requiring solutions that co-deliver on all aspects. We conclude that the status quo is not an option, and tinkering with the current production systems is unlikely to deliver the food and ecosystems services we need in the future; radical changes in production and consumption are likely to be required over the coming decades.

  20. 75 FR 56528 - EPA's Role in Advancing Sustainable Products

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-09-16

    ... in the ``green'' or sustainable products movement. The Agency will consider the information gathered... regarding the Agency's role in the ``green'' or sustainable products movement. The Agency will consider the..., or industrial products that may be considered as ``green,'' ``sustainable,'' or...

  1. Identification of microprocessor-dependent cancer cells allows screening for growth-sustaining micro-RNAs.

    PubMed

    Peric, D; Chvalova, K; Rousselet, G

    2012-04-19

    Micro-RNAs are deregulated in cancer cells, and some are either tumor suppressive or oncogenic. In addition, a link has been established between decreased expression of micro-RNAs and transformation, and several proteins of the RNA interference pathway have been shown to be haploinsufficient tumor suppressors. Oncogenic micro-RNAs (oncomiRs) could represent new therapeutic targets, and their identification is therefore crucial. However, structural and functional redundancy between micro-RNAs hampers approaches relying on individual micro-RNA inhibition. We reasoned that in cancer cells that depend on oncomiRs, impairing the micro-RNA pathway could lead to growth perturbation rather than increased tumorigenesis. Identifying such cells could allow functional analyses of individual micro-RNAs by complementation of the phenotypes observed upon global micro-RNA inhibition. Therefore, we developed episomal vectors coding for small hairpin RNAs targeting either Drosha or DGCR8, the two components of the microprocessor, the nuclear micro-RNA maturation complex. We identified cancer cell lines in which both vectors induced colony growth arrest. We then screened for individual micro-RNAs complementing this growth arrest, and identified miR-19a, miR-19b, miR-20a and miR-27b as major growth-sustaining micro-RNAs. However, the effect of miR-19a and miR-19b was only transient. In addition, embryonic stem cell-derived micro-RNAs with miR-20a seeds were much less efficient than miR-20a in sustaining cancer cell growth, a finding that contrasted with results obtained in stem cells. Finally, we showed that the tumor suppressor phosphatase and tensin homologue deleted on chromosome 10, a shared target of miR-19 and miR-20, was functionally involved in the growth arrest induced by microprocessor inhibition. We conclude that our approach allowed to identify microprocessor-dependent cancer cells, which could be used to screen for growth-sustaining micro-RNAs. This complementation screen

  2. Hydrazine Catalyst Production: Sustaining S-405 Technology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wucherer, E. J.; Cook, Timothy; Stiefel, Mark; Humphries, Randy, Jr.; Parker, Janet

    2003-01-01

    The development of the iridium-based Shell 405 catalyst for spontaneous decomposition of hydrazine was one of the key enabling technologies for today's spacecraft and launch vehicles. To ensure that this crucial technology was not lost when Shell elected to exit the business, Aerojet, supported by NASA, has developed a dedicated catalyst production facility that will supply catalyst for future spacecraft and launch vehicle requirements. We have undertaken a program to transfer catalyst production from Shell Chemical USA (Houston, TX) to Aerojet's Redmond, WA location. This technology transition was aided by Aerojet's 30 years of catalyst manufacturing experience and NASA diligence and support in sustaining essential technologies. The facility has produced and tested S-405 catalyst to existing Shell 405 specifications and standards. Our presentation will describe the technology transition effort including development of the manufacturing facility, capture of the manufacturing process, test equipment validation, initial batch build and final testing.

  3. Micro moulding: the route to a successful product.

    PubMed

    Whiteside, B; Manser, P

    2009-01-01

    This account of a company's struggle to take its product from concept to market reality details how micro moulding techniques can help meet difficult design requirements and create successful products with increased output.

  4. [Experimental investigation on micro-hollow cathode sustained discharge].

    PubMed

    Xia, Guang-Qing; Sadeghi, Nader

    2011-01-01

    Based on micro-hollow cathode discharge (MHCD) as a plasma cathode, a second anode was added to the device for obtaining large volume and uniform plasma at high pressure. The discharge producing condition of MCSD was investigated in the experiments. And the rotational structures of the N2 first positive bands were analyzed with traces of nitrogen added in argon for the measurements of the gas temperature in the MCSD plume. The experimental results show that when the current of the plasma cathode exceeds the threshold, the large volume stable plasma is generated. The gas temperature in the plume is increased a little with increasing the current (0.5-4 mA) and is about 500 K at the pressure of 50 Torr.

  5. Sustainable and efficient biohydrogen production via electrohydrogenesis

    SciTech Connect

    Cheng, S.; Logan, B.E.

    2007-11-20

    Hydrogen gas has tremendous potential as an environmentally acceptable energy carrier for vehicles, but most hydrogen is generated from nonrenewable fossil fuels such as natural gas. Here, the authors show that efficient and sustainable hydrogen production is possible from any type of biodegradable organic matter by electrohydrogenesis. In this process, protons and electrons released by exoelectrogenic bateria in specially designed reactors (based on modifying microbial fuel cells) are catalyzed to form hydrogen gas through the addition of a small voltage to the circuit. By improving the materials and reactor architecture, hydrogen gas was produced at yields of 2.01-3.95 mol/mol (50-99% of the theoretical maximum) at applied voltages of 0.2 to 0.8 V using acetic acid, a typical dead-end product of glucose or cellulose fermentation. At an applied voltage of 0.6 V, the overall energy efficiency of the process was 288% based solely on electricity applied, and 82% when the heat of combusion of acetic acid was included in the energy balance, at a gas production rate of 1.1 m{sup 3} of H{sub 2} per cubic meter of reactor per day. Direct high-yield hydrogen gas production was further demonstrated by using glucose, several volatile acids (acetic, butyric, lactic, propionic, and valeric), and cellulose at maximum stoichiometric yields of 54-91% and overall energy efficiencies of 64-82%. This electrohydrogenic process thus provides a highly efficient route for producting hydrogen gas from renewable and carbon-neutral biomass resources.

  6. Globally sustainable manganese metal production and use.

    PubMed

    Hagelstein, Karen

    2009-09-01

    The "cradle to grave" concept of managing chemicals and wastes has been a descriptive analogy of proper environmental stewardship since the 1970s. The concept incorporates environmentally sustainable product choices-such as metal alloys utilized steel products which civilization is dependent upon. Manganese consumption is related to the increasing production of raw steel and upgrading ferroalloys. Nonferrous applications of manganese include production of dry-cell batteries, plant fertilizer components, animal feed and colorant for bricks. The manganese ore (high grade 35% manganese) production world wide is about 6 million ton/year and electrolytic manganese metal demand is about 0.7 million ton/year. The total manganese demand is consumed globally by industries including construction (23%), machinery (14%), and transportation (11%). Manganese is recycled within scrap of iron and steel, a small amount is recycled within aluminum used beverage cans. Recycling rate is 37% and efficiency is estimated as 53% [Roskill Metals and Minerals Reports, January 13, 2005. Manganese Report: rapid rise in output caused by Chinese crude steel production. Available from: http://www.roskill.com/reports/manganese.]. Environmentally sustainable management choices include identifying raw material chemistry, utilizing clean production processes, minimizing waste generation, recycling materials, controlling occupational exposures, and collecting representative environmental data. This paper will discuss two electrolytically produced manganese metals, the metal production differences, and environmental impacts cited to date. The two electrolytic manganese processes differ due to the addition of sulfur dioxide or selenium dioxide. Adverse environmental impacts due to use of selenium dioxide methodology include increased water consumption and order of magnitude greater solid waste generation per ton of metal processed. The use of high grade manganese ores in the electrolytic process also

  7. Globally sustainable manganese metal production and use.

    PubMed

    Hagelstein, Karen

    2009-09-01

    The "cradle to grave" concept of managing chemicals and wastes has been a descriptive analogy of proper environmental stewardship since the 1970s. The concept incorporates environmentally sustainable product choices-such as metal alloys utilized steel products which civilization is dependent upon. Manganese consumption is related to the increasing production of raw steel and upgrading ferroalloys. Nonferrous applications of manganese include production of dry-cell batteries, plant fertilizer components, animal feed and colorant for bricks. The manganese ore (high grade 35% manganese) production world wide is about 6 million ton/year and electrolytic manganese metal demand is about 0.7 million ton/year. The total manganese demand is consumed globally by industries including construction (23%), machinery (14%), and transportation (11%). Manganese is recycled within scrap of iron and steel, a small amount is recycled within aluminum used beverage cans. Recycling rate is 37% and efficiency is estimated as 53% [Roskill Metals and Minerals Reports, January 13, 2005. Manganese Report: rapid rise in output caused by Chinese crude steel production. Available from: http://www.roskill.com/reports/manganese.]. Environmentally sustainable management choices include identifying raw material chemistry, utilizing clean production processes, minimizing waste generation, recycling materials, controlling occupational exposures, and collecting representative environmental data. This paper will discuss two electrolytically produced manganese metals, the metal production differences, and environmental impacts cited to date. The two electrolytic manganese processes differ due to the addition of sulfur dioxide or selenium dioxide. Adverse environmental impacts due to use of selenium dioxide methodology include increased water consumption and order of magnitude greater solid waste generation per ton of metal processed. The use of high grade manganese ores in the electrolytic process also

  8. Sustainable and efficient biohydrogen production via electrohydrogenesis.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Shaoan; Logan, Bruce E

    2007-11-20

    Hydrogen gas has tremendous potential as an environmentally acceptable energy carrier for vehicles, but most hydrogen is generated from nonrenewable fossil fuels such as natural gas. Here, we show that efficient and sustainable hydrogen production is possible from any type of biodegradable organic matter by electrohydrogenesis. In this process, protons and electrons released by exoelectrogenic bacteria in specially designed reactors (based on modifying microbial fuel cells) are catalyzed to form hydrogen gas through the addition of a small voltage to the circuit. By improving the materials and reactor architecture, hydrogen gas was produced at yields of 2.01-3.95 mol/mol (50-99% of the theoretical maximum) at applied voltages of 0.2 to 0.8 V using acetic acid, a typical dead-end product of glucose or cellulose fermentation. At an applied voltage of 0.6 V, the overall energy efficiency of the process was 288% based solely on electricity applied, and 82% when the heat of combustion of acetic acid was included in the energy balance, at a gas production rate of 1.1 m(3) of H(2) per cubic meter of reactor per day. Direct high-yield hydrogen gas production was further demonstrated by using glucose, several volatile acids (acetic, butyric, lactic, propionic, and valeric), and cellulose at maximum stoichiometric yields of 54-91% and overall energy efficiencies of 64-82%. This electrohydrogenic process thus provides a highly efficient route for producing hydrogen gas from renewable and carbon-neutral biomass resources.

  9. Sustainable and efficient biohydrogen production via electrohydrogenesis.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Shaoan; Logan, Bruce E

    2007-11-20

    Hydrogen gas has tremendous potential as an environmentally acceptable energy carrier for vehicles, but most hydrogen is generated from nonrenewable fossil fuels such as natural gas. Here, we show that efficient and sustainable hydrogen production is possible from any type of biodegradable organic matter by electrohydrogenesis. In this process, protons and electrons released by exoelectrogenic bacteria in specially designed reactors (based on modifying microbial fuel cells) are catalyzed to form hydrogen gas through the addition of a small voltage to the circuit. By improving the materials and reactor architecture, hydrogen gas was produced at yields of 2.01-3.95 mol/mol (50-99% of the theoretical maximum) at applied voltages of 0.2 to 0.8 V using acetic acid, a typical dead-end product of glucose or cellulose fermentation. At an applied voltage of 0.6 V, the overall energy efficiency of the process was 288% based solely on electricity applied, and 82% when the heat of combustion of acetic acid was included in the energy balance, at a gas production rate of 1.1 m(3) of H(2) per cubic meter of reactor per day. Direct high-yield hydrogen gas production was further demonstrated by using glucose, several volatile acids (acetic, butyric, lactic, propionic, and valeric), and cellulose at maximum stoichiometric yields of 54-91% and overall energy efficiencies of 64-82%. This electrohydrogenic process thus provides a highly efficient route for producing hydrogen gas from renewable and carbon-neutral biomass resources. PMID:18000052

  10. Study of the transition between MicroHollow Cathode Discharge and MicroCathode Sustained Discharge in a 3-electrode system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pitchford, L. C.; Makasheva, K.; Callegari, Th.; Boeuf, J. P.; Santos Sousa, J.; Puech, V.

    2007-10-01

    MicroHollow Cathode Discharges (MHCDs) are known to be good sources for production of DC non-thermal plasmas at high gas pressure. Using them as a cathode in a system with third positivly biased electrode, placed at distance of about 1 cm from the MHCD, allows the ignition of a stable, larger volume plasma in the MicroCathode Sustained Discharge (MCSD). The aim of our study is to investigate the electrical properties of the discharge when it is sustained in different gases (He, Ne, Ar or O2). The voltage-current (V-I) characteristics of the MCSD were measured for gas pressures in the range p = 50 -- 200 Torr, varying gas flow Q = 50 --500 sccm and gas composition. The MHCD is a sandwich type, consisting of 100 μm thick molybdenum electrodes glued on each side of 500 μm thick Al2O3 plate, with a 800 μm diameter hole. The transition between the MHCD and MCSD, defined as the point where the third electrode collects all the electron current, is rather abrupt and depends on the operating conditions. Results from model calculations will also be presented to help clarify the phenomena occuring during the transition.

  11. Developing a Decision Model of Sustainable Product Design and Development from Product Servicizing in Taiwan

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Huang, Yu-Chen; Tu, Jui-Che; Hung, So-Jeng

    2016-01-01

    In response to the global trend of low carbon and the concept of sustainable development, enterprises need to develop R&D for the manufacturing of energy-saving and sustainable products and low carbon products. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to construct a decision model for sustainable product design and development from product…

  12. Comprehensive Analysis Competence and Innovative Approaches for Sustainable Chemical Production.

    PubMed

    Appel, Joerg; Colombo, Corrado; Dätwyler, Urs; Chen, Yun; Kerimoglu, Nimet

    2016-01-01

    Humanity currently sees itself facing enormous economic, ecological, and social challenges. Sustainable products and production in specialty chemistry are an important strategic element to address these megatrends. In addition to that, digitalization and global connectivity will create new opportunities for the industry. One aspect is examined in this paper, which shows the development of comprehensive analysis of production networks for a more sustainable production in which the need for innovative solutions arises. Examples from data analysis, advanced process control and automated performance monitoring are shown. These efforts have significant impact on improved yields, reduced energy and water consumption, and better product performance in the application of the products.

  13. Comprehensive Analysis Competence and Innovative Approaches for Sustainable Chemical Production.

    PubMed

    Appel, Joerg; Colombo, Corrado; Dätwyler, Urs; Chen, Yun; Kerimoglu, Nimet

    2016-01-01

    Humanity currently sees itself facing enormous economic, ecological, and social challenges. Sustainable products and production in specialty chemistry are an important strategic element to address these megatrends. In addition to that, digitalization and global connectivity will create new opportunities for the industry. One aspect is examined in this paper, which shows the development of comprehensive analysis of production networks for a more sustainable production in which the need for innovative solutions arises. Examples from data analysis, advanced process control and automated performance monitoring are shown. These efforts have significant impact on improved yields, reduced energy and water consumption, and better product performance in the application of the products. PMID:27646543

  14. Wood Energy Production, Sustainable Farming Livelihood and Multifunctionality in Finland

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Huttunen, Suvi

    2012-01-01

    Climate change and the projected depletion of fossil energy resources pose multiple global challenges. Innovative technologies offer interesting possibilities to achieve more sustainable outcomes in the energy production sector. Local, decentralized alternatives have the potential to sustain livelihoods in rural areas. One example of such a…

  15. Sustainable Production of Chemicals--An Educational Perspective

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Eissen, Marco

    2012-01-01

    "Sustainability" is a very general term and the question arises how to specify it within daily laboratory work. In this regard, appropriate metrics could support a socially acceptable, ecological and economic product development. The application of metrics for sustainability should be strengthened in education, because they do not belong to…

  16. How "Sustainability" is Changing How We Make and Choose Products

    SciTech Connect

    Cheryl O'Brien

    2006-07-01

    What does Sustainability mean, and why should people in the thermophysical properties business care? This paper will describe sustainability in the context of product development, which is where much of the buzz is currently being generated. Once described, it will discuss how expectations for Sustainability are changing product lines, and then discuss the controversial issues now emerging from trying to measure Sustainability. One of the most organized efforts in the U.S. is the U.S. Green Building Council revolutionizing how the built environment is conceptualized, designed, built, used, and disposed of - and born again. The appeal of the US Green Building Council is that it has managed to checklist how to "do" Sustainability. By following this checklist, better described as a rating system, a more Sustainable product should be achieved. That is, a product that uses less energy, less water, is less noxious to the user, and consumes fewer resources. We care because these Sustainable products are viewed as preferable by a growing number of consumers and, consequently, are more valuable. One of the most interesting aspects of the Sustainability movement is a quantitative assessment of how sustainable a product is. Life Cycle Assessment techniques (not to be confused with life cycle economic costs) developed since the early 1990s are gaining ground as a less biased method to measure the ultimate "bad" consequences of creating a product (depletion of natural resources, nutrification, acid rain, air borne particulates, solid waste, etc.). For example, one assertion is that these studies have shown that recycling can sometimes do more environmental harm than good.

  17. Activity-Based Micro-pricing: Realizing Sustainable Behavior Changes through Economic Incentives

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamabe, Tetsuo; Lehdonvirta, Vili; Ito, Hitoshi; Soma, Hayuru; Kimura, Hiroaki; Nakajima, Tatsuo

    In this paper, we further develop the idea of combining pervasive computing techniques with electronic payment systems to create activity-based micro-incentives. Economic incentives are an effective way to influence consumer behavior, and are used in e.g. marketing and resource coordination. Our approach allows marketers and regulators to induce consumers to perform particular actions in new application domains by attaching micro-prices to a wider range of behaviors. A key challenge is designing incentive mechanisms that result in desired behavior changes. We examine two basic incentive models. Based on the results of preliminary experiments, we discuss how economic incentives can affect consumer attitudes and lead to sustainable behavior changes.

  18. Modeling Sustainability in Product Development and Commercialization

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carlson, Robert C.; Rafinejad, Dariush

    2008-01-01

    In this article, the authors present the framework of a model that integrates strategic product development decisions with the product's impact on future conditions of resources and the environment. The impact of a product on stocks of nonrenewable sources and sinks is linked in a feedback loop to the cost of manufacturing and using the product…

  19. Assessing the sustainability of egg production systems in The Netherlands.

    PubMed

    van Asselt, E D; van Bussel, L G J; van Horne, P; van der Voet, H; van der Heijden, G W A M; van der Fels-Klerx, H J

    2015-08-01

    Housing systems for laying hens have changed over the years due to increased public concern regarding animal welfare. In terms of sustainability, animal welfare is just one aspect that needs to be considered. Social aspects as well as environmental and economic factors need to be included as well. In this study, we assessed the sustainability of enriched cage, barn, free-range, and organic egg production systems following a predefined protocol. Indicators were selected within the social, environmental, and economic dimensions, after which parameter values and sustainability limits were set for the core indicators in order to quantify sustainability. Uncertainty in the parameter values as well as assigned weights and compensabilities of the indicators influenced the outcome of the sustainability assessment. Using equal weights for the indicators showed that, for the Dutch situation, enriched cage egg production was most sustainable, having the highest score on the environmental dimension, whereas free-range egg production gave the highest score in the social dimension (covering food safety, animal welfare, and human welfare). In the economic dimension both enriched cage egg and organic egg production had the highest sustainability score. When weights were attributed according to stakeholder outputs, individual differences were seen, but the overall scores were comparable to the sustainability scores based on equal weights. The provided method enabled a quantification of sustainability using input from stakeholders to include societal preferences in the overall assessment. Allowing for different weights and compensabilities helps policymakers in communicating with stakeholders involved and provides a weighted decision regarding future housing systems for laying hens. PMID:26049800

  20. Assessing the sustainability of egg production systems in The Netherlands.

    PubMed

    van Asselt, E D; van Bussel, L G J; van Horne, P; van der Voet, H; van der Heijden, G W A M; van der Fels-Klerx, H J

    2015-08-01

    Housing systems for laying hens have changed over the years due to increased public concern regarding animal welfare. In terms of sustainability, animal welfare is just one aspect that needs to be considered. Social aspects as well as environmental and economic factors need to be included as well. In this study, we assessed the sustainability of enriched cage, barn, free-range, and organic egg production systems following a predefined protocol. Indicators were selected within the social, environmental, and economic dimensions, after which parameter values and sustainability limits were set for the core indicators in order to quantify sustainability. Uncertainty in the parameter values as well as assigned weights and compensabilities of the indicators influenced the outcome of the sustainability assessment. Using equal weights for the indicators showed that, for the Dutch situation, enriched cage egg production was most sustainable, having the highest score on the environmental dimension, whereas free-range egg production gave the highest score in the social dimension (covering food safety, animal welfare, and human welfare). In the economic dimension both enriched cage egg and organic egg production had the highest sustainability score. When weights were attributed according to stakeholder outputs, individual differences were seen, but the overall scores were comparable to the sustainability scores based on equal weights. The provided method enabled a quantification of sustainability using input from stakeholders to include societal preferences in the overall assessment. Allowing for different weights and compensabilities helps policymakers in communicating with stakeholders involved and provides a weighted decision regarding future housing systems for laying hens.

  1. Assessing the sustainability of beef production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    As a major food source, beef production provides an important service to our economy. Production of cattle and the associated feed crops also impact our environment, and this impact is not well understood. Although several studies have assessed the carbon footprint of beef, there are other environme...

  2. Food production & availability - Essential prerequisites for sustainable food security

    PubMed Central

    Swaminathan, M.S.; Bhavani, R.V.

    2013-01-01

    Food and nutrition security are intimately interconnected, since only a food based approach can help in overcoming malnutrition in an economically and socially sustainable manner. Food production provides the base for food security as it is a key determinant of food availability. This paper deals with different aspects of ensuring high productivity and production without associated ecological harm for ensuring adequate food availability. By mainstreaming ecological considerations in technology development and dissemination, we can enter an era of evergreen revolution and sustainable food and nutrition security. Public policy support is crucial for enabling this. PMID:24135188

  3. Food production & availability--essential prerequisites for sustainable food security.

    PubMed

    Swaminathan, M S; Bhavani, R V

    2013-09-01

    Food and nutrition security are intimately interconnected, since only a food based approach can help in overcoming malnutrition in an economically and socially sustainable manner. Food production provides the base for food security as it is a key determinant of food availability. This paper deals with different aspects of ensuring high productivity and production without associated ecological harm for ensuring adequate food availability. By mainstreaming ecological considerations in technology development and dissemination, we can enter an era of evergreen revolution and sustainable food and nutrition security. Public policy support is crucial for enabling this.

  4. Bioeconomic Sustainability of Cellulosic Biofuel Production on Marginal Lands

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gutierrez, Andrew Paul; Ponti, Luigi

    2009-01-01

    The use of marginal land (ML) for lignocellulosic biofuel production is examined for system stability, resilience, and eco-social sustainability. A North American prairie grass system and its industrialization for maximum biomass production using biotechnology and agro-technical inputs is the focus of the analysis. Demographic models of ML biomass…

  5. Environmental impacts and sustainability of egg production systems

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    As part of a systemic assessment toward social sustainability of egg production, we have reviewed current knowledge about the environmental impacts of egg production systems and identified topics requiring further research. Currently, we know that 1) high-rise cage houses generally have poorer air q...

  6. High Yields for Enhanced Sustainable Feedstock Production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Globally, humankind is in the midst of one of the greatest technological, environmental, and social transitions since the industrial revolution as we strive to replace fossil energy with renewable sources. The Billion Ton Report established a target for U.S. bioenergy feedstock production and throug...

  7. Definition of animal breeding goals for sustainable production systems.

    PubMed

    Olesen, I; Groen, A F; Gjerde, B

    2000-03-01

    What we do is determined by the way we "view" a complex issue and what sample of issues or events we choose to deal with. In this paper, a model based on a communal, cultural, or people-centered worldview, informed by a subjective epistemology and a holistic ontology, is considered. Definitions and interpretations of sustainable agriculture are reviewed. Common elements in published definitions of sustainable agriculture and animal production among those who seek long-term and equitable solutions for food production are resource efficiency, profitability, productivity, environmental soundness, biodiversity, social viability, and ethical aspects. Possible characteristics of future sustainable production systems and further development are presented. The impact of these characteristics on animal breeding goals is reviewed. The need for long-term biologically, ecologically, and sociologically sound breeding goals is emphasized, because animal breeding determined only by short-term market forces leads to unwanted side effects. Hence, a procedure for defining animal breeding goals with ethical priorities and weighing of market and non-market values is suggested. Implementation of non-market as well as market economic trait values in the aggregate genotype, as suggested, may allow for breeding programs that contribute to sustainable production systems. Examples of breeding goals in salmon, cattle, and pigs are given, and the resulting genetic responses are evaluated with respect to economic profit (or costs) and other criteria of sustainability. Important prerequisites for breeding programs for sustainable production are appropriate governmental policies, awareness of our way of thinking, and a more communal worldview informed by a subjective epistemology and a holistic ontology.

  8. A micro-sized bio-solar cell for self-sustaining power generation.

    PubMed

    Lee, Hankeun; Choi, Seokheun

    2015-01-21

    Self-sustainable energy sources are essential for a wide array of wireless applications deployed in remote field locations. Due to their self-assembling and self-repairing properties, "biological solar (bio-solar) cells" are recently gaining attention for those applications. The bio-solar cell can continuously generate electricity from microbial photosynthetic and respiratory activities under day-night cycles. Despite the vast potential and promise of bio-solar cells, they, however, have not yet successfully been translated into commercial applications, as they possess persistent performance limitations and scale-up bottlenecks. Here, we report an entirely self-sustainable and scalable microliter-sized bio-solar cell with significant power enhancement by maximizing solar energy capture, bacterial attachment, and air bubble volume in well-controlled microchambers. The bio-solar cell has a ~300 μL single chamber defined by laser-machined poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) substrates and it uses an air cathode to allow freely available oxygen to act as an electron acceptor. We generated a maximum power density of 0.9 mW m(-2) through photosynthetic reactions of cyanobacteria, Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803, which is the highest power density among all micro-sized bio-solar cells. PMID:25367739

  9. A micro-sized bio-solar cell for self-sustaining power generation.

    PubMed

    Lee, Hankeun; Choi, Seokheun

    2015-01-21

    Self-sustainable energy sources are essential for a wide array of wireless applications deployed in remote field locations. Due to their self-assembling and self-repairing properties, "biological solar (bio-solar) cells" are recently gaining attention for those applications. The bio-solar cell can continuously generate electricity from microbial photosynthetic and respiratory activities under day-night cycles. Despite the vast potential and promise of bio-solar cells, they, however, have not yet successfully been translated into commercial applications, as they possess persistent performance limitations and scale-up bottlenecks. Here, we report an entirely self-sustainable and scalable microliter-sized bio-solar cell with significant power enhancement by maximizing solar energy capture, bacterial attachment, and air bubble volume in well-controlled microchambers. The bio-solar cell has a ~300 μL single chamber defined by laser-machined poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) substrates and it uses an air cathode to allow freely available oxygen to act as an electron acceptor. We generated a maximum power density of 0.9 mW m(-2) through photosynthetic reactions of cyanobacteria, Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803, which is the highest power density among all micro-sized bio-solar cells.

  10. 36 CFR 223.219 - Sustainable harvest of special forest products.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... scale, and scientific data available prior to making their sustainability determination and establishing... on the sustainability of special forest products. Such monitoring may include, but is not limited...

  11. 36 CFR 223.219 - Sustainable harvest of special forest products.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... scale, and scientific data available prior to making their sustainability determination and establishing... on the sustainability of special forest products. Such monitoring may include, but is not limited...

  12. 36 CFR 223.219 - Sustainable harvest of special forest products.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... scale, and scientific data available prior to making their sustainability determination and establishing... on the sustainability of special forest products. Such monitoring may include, but is not limited...

  13. 36 CFR 223.219 - Sustainable harvest of special forest products.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... scale, and scientific data available prior to making their sustainability determination and establishing... on the sustainability of special forest products. Such monitoring may include, but is not limited...

  14. Sustainability.

    PubMed

    Chang, Chein-Chi; DiGiovanni, Kimberly; Mei, Ying; Wei, Li

    2016-10-01

    This review on Sustainability covers selected 2015 publications on the focus of Sustainability. It is divided into the following sections : • Sustainable water and wastewater utilities • Sustainable water resources management • Stormwater and green infrastructure • Sustainability in wastewater treatment • Life cycle assessment (LCA) applications • Sustainability and energy in wastewater industry, • Sustainability and asset management.

  15. Sustainability.

    PubMed

    Chang, Chein-Chi; DiGiovanni, Kimberly; Mei, Ying; Wei, Li

    2016-10-01

    This review on Sustainability covers selected 2015 publications on the focus of Sustainability. It is divided into the following sections : • Sustainable water and wastewater utilities • Sustainable water resources management • Stormwater and green infrastructure • Sustainability in wastewater treatment • Life cycle assessment (LCA) applications • Sustainability and energy in wastewater industry, • Sustainability and asset management. PMID:27620092

  16. The Power of Micro Urban Structures, Theory of EEPGC - the Micro Urban Energy Distribution Model as a Planning Tool for Sustainable City Development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tkáč, Štefan

    2015-11-01

    To achieve the smart growth and equitable development in the region, urban planners should consider also lateral energies represented by the energy urban models like further proposed EEPGC focused on energy distribution via connections among micro-urban structures, their onsite renewable resources and the perception of micro-urban structures as decentralized energy carriers based on pre industrialized era. These structures are still variously bound when part of greater patterns. After the industrial revolution the main traded goods became energy in its various forms. The EEPGC is focused on sustainable energy transportation distances between the villages and the city, described by the virtual "energy circles". This more human scale urbanization, boost the economy in micro-urban areas, rising along with clean energy available in situ that surely gives a different perspective to human quality of life in contrast to overcrowded multicultural mega-urban structures facing generations of problems and struggling to survive as a whole.

  17. Vegetation Health and Productivity Indicators for Sustained National Climate Assessments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jones, M. O.; Running, S. W.

    2014-12-01

    The National Climate Assessment process is developing a system of physical, ecological, and societal indicators that communicate key aspects of the physical climate, climate impacts, vulnerabilities, and preparedness for the purpose of informing both decision makers and the public. Implementing a 14 year record of Gross and Net Primary Productivity (GPP/NPP) derived from the NASA EOS MODIS satellite sensor we demonstrate how these products can serve as Ecosystem Productivity and Vegetation Health National Climate Indicators for implementation in sustained National Climate Assessments. The NPP product combines MODIS vegetation data with daily global meteorology to calculate annual growth of all plant material at 1 sq. km resolution. NPP anomalies identify regions with above or below average plant growth that may result from climate fluctuations and can inform carbon source/sink dynamics, agricultural and forestry yield measures, and response to wildfire or drought conditions. The GPP product provides a high temporal resolution (8-day) metric of vegetation growth which can be used to monitor short-term vegetation response to extreme events and implemented to derive vegetation phenology metrics; growing season start, end, and length, which can elucidate land cover and regionally specific vegetation responses to a changing climate. The high spatial resolution GPP and NPP indicators can also inform and clarify responses seen from other proposed Pilot Indicators such as forest growth/productivity, land cover, crop production, and phenology. The GPP and NPP data are in continuous production and will be sustained into the future with the next generation satellite missions. The long-term Ecosystem Productivity and Vegetation Health Indicators are ideal for use in sustained National Climate Assessments, providing regionally specific responses to a changing climate and complete coverage at the national scale.

  18. Sustainable production of biologically active molecules of marine based origin.

    PubMed

    Murray, Patrick M; Moane, Siobhan; Collins, Catherine; Beletskaya, Tanya; Thomas, Olivier P; Duarte, Alysson W F; Nobre, Fernando S; Owoyemi, Ifeloju O; Pagnocca, Fernando C; Sette, L D; McHugh, Edward; Causse, Eric; Pérez-López, Paula; Feijoo, Gumersindo; Moreira, Ma T; Rubiolo, Juan; Leirós, Marta; Botana, Luis M; Pinteus, Susete; Alves, Celso; Horta, André; Pedrosa, Rui; Jeffryes, Clayton; Agathos, Spiros N; Allewaert, Celine; Verween, Annick; Vyverman, Wim; Laptev, Ivan; Sineoky, Sergei; Bisio, Angela; Manconi, Renata; Ledda, Fabio; Marchi, Mario; Pronzato, Roberto; Walsh, Daniel J

    2013-09-25

    The marine environment offers both economic and scientific potential which are relatively untapped from a biotechnological point of view. These environments whilst harsh are ironically fragile and dependent on a harmonious life form balance. Exploitation of natural resources by exhaustive wild harvesting has obvious negative environmental consequences. From a European industry perspective marine organisms are a largely underutilised resource. This is not due to lack of interest but due to a lack of choice the industry faces for cost competitive, sustainable and environmentally conscientious product alternatives. Knowledge of the biotechnological potential of marine organisms together with the development of sustainable systems for their cultivation, processing and utilisation are essential. In 2010, the European Commission recognised this need and funded a collaborative RTD/SME project under the Framework 7-Knowledge Based Bio-Economy (KBBE) Theme 2 Programme 'Sustainable culture of marine microorganisms, algae and/or invertebrates for high value added products'. The scope of that project entitled 'Sustainable Production of Biologically Active Molecules of Marine Based Origin' (BAMMBO) is outlined. Although the Union is a global leader in many technologies, it faces increasing competition from traditional rivals and emerging economies alike and must therefore improve its innovation performance. For this reason innovation is placed at the heart of a European Horizon 2020 Strategy wherein the challenge is to connect economic performance to eco performance. This article provides a synopsis of the research activities of the BAMMBO project as they fit within the wider scope of sustainable environmentally conscientious marine resource exploitation for high-value biomolecules.

  19. SOIL ECOLOGY AS KEY TO SUSTAINABLE CROP PRODUCTION.

    PubMed

    De Deyn, G B

    2015-01-01

    Sustainable production of food, feed and fiberwarrants sustainable soil management and crop protection. The tools available to achieve this are both in the realm of the plants and of the soil, with a key role for plant-soil interactions. At the plant level we have vast knowledge of variation within plant species with respect to pests and diseases, based on which we can breed for resistance. However, given that systems evolve this resistance is bound to be temporarily, hence also other strategies are needed. Here I plea for an integrative approach for sustainable production using ecological principles. Ecology, the study of how organisms interact with their environment, teaches us that diversity promotes productivity and yield stability. These effects are thought to be governed through resource use complementarity and reduced build-up of pests and diseases both above- and belowground. In recent years especially the role of soil biotic interactions has revealed new insights in how plant diversity and productivity are related to soil biodiversity and the functions soil biota govern. In our grassland biodiversity studies we found that root feeders can promote plant diversity and succession without reducing plant community productivity, this illustrates the role of diversity to maintain productivity. Also diversity within species offers scope for sustainable production, for example through awareness of differences between plant genotypes in chemical defense compounds that can attract natural enemies of pests aboveground- and belowground thereby providing plant protection. Plant breeding can also benefit from using complementarity between plant species in the selection for new varieties, as our work demonstrated that when growing in species mixtures plant species adapt to each other over time such that their resource acquisition traits become more complementing. Finally, in a recent meta-analysis we show that earthworms can stimulate crop yield with on average 25%, but

  20. SOIL ECOLOGY AS KEY TO SUSTAINABLE CROP PRODUCTION.

    PubMed

    De Deyn, G B

    2015-01-01

    Sustainable production of food, feed and fiberwarrants sustainable soil management and crop protection. The tools available to achieve this are both in the realm of the plants and of the soil, with a key role for plant-soil interactions. At the plant level we have vast knowledge of variation within plant species with respect to pests and diseases, based on which we can breed for resistance. However, given that systems evolve this resistance is bound to be temporarily, hence also other strategies are needed. Here I plea for an integrative approach for sustainable production using ecological principles. Ecology, the study of how organisms interact with their environment, teaches us that diversity promotes productivity and yield stability. These effects are thought to be governed through resource use complementarity and reduced build-up of pests and diseases both above- and belowground. In recent years especially the role of soil biotic interactions has revealed new insights in how plant diversity and productivity are related to soil biodiversity and the functions soil biota govern. In our grassland biodiversity studies we found that root feeders can promote plant diversity and succession without reducing plant community productivity, this illustrates the role of diversity to maintain productivity. Also diversity within species offers scope for sustainable production, for example through awareness of differences between plant genotypes in chemical defense compounds that can attract natural enemies of pests aboveground- and belowground thereby providing plant protection. Plant breeding can also benefit from using complementarity between plant species in the selection for new varieties, as our work demonstrated that when growing in species mixtures plant species adapt to each other over time such that their resource acquisition traits become more complementing. Finally, in a recent meta-analysis we show that earthworms can stimulate crop yield with on average 25%, but

  1. Ergonomics and sustainability in the design of everyday use products.

    PubMed

    Tosi, Francesca

    2012-01-01

    The relationship between Ergonomics and Design is a key element in the sustainability project, as well as in many other areas of experimental design. In the Design for Sustainability field, Ergonomics is a strategic factor for design culture innovation, providing designers with the necessary knowledge and skills regarding human characteristics and capabilities, as well as user needs and desires during use and interaction with products in work activities and everyday life. Ergonomics is also a strategic innovative factor in design development and manufacturing processes. In fact, ergonomics provides a methodological approach in user-product interaction evaluation processes through the use of participatory design and survey methods, user trials, direct observation, savings and resource conservation, etc.On the other hand, design offers solutions able to interpret user needs and expectations, at the same time suggesting new behaviors and lifestyles.In Design for Sustainability, the ergonomic and user-centered approach contributes greatly to lifestyles and innovative use of products--making it possible to understand and interpret real people needs and expectations in their everyday actions and behavior.New consumption patterns, new awareness of lifestyles, energy source consumption, purchasing methods and consumption style etc. can be supported by design innovation, responding to expressed and unexpressed user needs. With this in mind, the ergonomic approach represents the starting point for design choices and at the same time, a tool for assessing their appropriateness and effectiveness. PMID:22317314

  2. Multi-scale modeling for sustainable chemical production.

    PubMed

    Zhuang, Kai; Bakshi, Bhavik R; Herrgård, Markus J

    2013-09-01

    With recent advances in metabolic engineering, it is now technically possible to produce a wide portfolio of existing petrochemical products from biomass feedstock. In recent years, a number of modeling approaches have been developed to support the engineering and decision-making processes associated with the development and implementation of a sustainable biochemical industry. The temporal and spatial scales of modeling approaches for sustainable chemical production vary greatly, ranging from metabolic models that aid the design of fermentative microbial strains to material and monetary flow models that explore the ecological impacts of all economic activities. Research efforts that attempt to connect the models at different scales have been limited. Here, we review a number of existing modeling approaches and their applications at the scales of metabolism, bioreactor, overall process, chemical industry, economy, and ecosystem. In addition, we propose a multi-scale approach for integrating the existing models into a cohesive framework. The major benefit of this proposed framework is that the design and decision-making at each scale can be informed, guided, and constrained by simulations and predictions at every other scale. In addition, the development of this multi-scale framework would promote cohesive collaborations across multiple traditionally disconnected modeling disciplines to achieve sustainable chemical production.

  3. Links between livestock production, the environment and sustainable development.

    PubMed

    Pradbre, J-P

    2014-12-01

    This study examines the prospects for strong growth in the supply and demand for animal products worldwide, especially in developing countries, where 80% of the world's population lives. Based on scientific publications, statistics and field observations, it reviews greenhouse gas emission levels from livestock, the ability of ruminant livestock systems to sequester carbon and the capacity of the livestock industry to meet the challenge of sustainable development and to share its benefits while minimising impacts to climate change. Special attention is paid to the situation of the 800 million livestock farmers in the world living at the extreme end of poverty. The study underlines the importance of improving livestock productivity and the interdependence of the economic, environmental and social components of sustainable development. It highlights how, in the least developed countries and most lower-middle-income countries, the pressure exerted by animal diseases hampers efforts to improve livestock productivity. Poor livestock farmers have not sufficiently benefited from development policies and need support to adopt technological advances to meet the challenges of sustainable development and poverty reduction.

  4. Environmental indicators for sustainable production of algal biofuels

    SciTech Connect

    Efroymson, Rebecca A.; Dale, Virginia H.

    2014-10-01

    For analyzing sustainability of algal biofuels, we identify 16 environmental indicators that fall into six categories: soil quality, water quality and quantity, air quality, greenhouse gas emissions, biodiversity, and productivity. Indicators are selected to be practical, widely applicable, predictable in response, anticipatory of future changes, independent of scale, and responsive to management. Major differences between algae and terrestrial plant feedstocks, as well as their supply chains for biofuel, are highlighted, for they influence the choice of appropriate sustainability indicators. Algae strain selection characteristics do not generally affect which indicators are selected. The use of water instead of soil as the growth medium for algae determines the higher priority of water- over soil-related indicators. The proposed set of environmental indicators provides an initial checklist for measures of biofuel sustainability but may need to be modified for particular contexts depending on data availability, goals of the stakeholders, and financial constraints. Ultimately, use of these indicators entails defining sustainability goals and targets in relation to stakeholder values in a particular context and can lead to improved management practices.

  5. Environmental indicators for sustainable production of algal biofuels

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Efroymson, Rebecca A.; Dale, Virginia H.

    2014-10-01

    For analyzing sustainability of algal biofuels, we identify 16 environmental indicators that fall into six categories: soil quality, water quality and quantity, air quality, greenhouse gas emissions, biodiversity, and productivity. Indicators are selected to be practical, widely applicable, predictable in response, anticipatory of future changes, independent of scale, and responsive to management. Major differences between algae and terrestrial plant feedstocks, as well as their supply chains for biofuel, are highlighted, for they influence the choice of appropriate sustainability indicators. Algae strain selection characteristics do not generally affect which indicators are selected. The use of water instead of soil as themore » growth medium for algae determines the higher priority of water- over soil-related indicators. The proposed set of environmental indicators provides an initial checklist for measures of biofuel sustainability but may need to be modified for particular contexts depending on data availability, goals of the stakeholders, and financial constraints. Ultimately, use of these indicators entails defining sustainability goals and targets in relation to stakeholder values in a particular context and can lead to improved management practices.« less

  6. Water footprints of cities - indicators for sustainable consumption and production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoff, H.; Döll, P.; Fader, M.; Gerten, D.; Hauser, S.; Siebert, S.

    2014-01-01

    Water footprints have been proposed as sustainability indicators, relating the consumption of goods like food to the amount of water necessary for their production and the impacts of that water use in the source regions. We further developed the existing water footprint methodology, by globally resolving virtual water flows from production to consumption regions for major food crops at 5 arcmin spatial resolution. We distinguished domestic and international flows, and assessed local impacts of export production. Applying this method to three exemplary cities, Berlin, Delhi and Lagos, we find major differences in amounts, composition, and origin of green and blue virtual water imports, due to differences in diets, trade integration and crop water productivities in the source regions. While almost all of Delhi's and Lagos' virtual water imports are of domestic origin, Berlin on average imports from more than 4000 km distance, in particular soy (livestock feed), coffee and cocoa. While 42% of Delhi's virtual water imports are blue water based, the fractions for Berlin and Lagos are 2 and 0.5%, respectively, roughly equal to the water volumes abstracted in these two cities for domestic water use. Some of the external source regions of Berlin's virtual water imports appear to be critically water scarce and/or food insecure. However, for deriving recommendations on sustainable consumption and trade, further analysis of context-specific costs and benefits associated with export production will be required.

  7. Sustainability of organic food production: challenges and innovations.

    PubMed

    Niggli, Urs

    2015-02-01

    The greatest challenge for agriculture is to reduce the trade-offs between productivity and long-term sustainability. Therefore, it is interesting to analyse organic agriculture which is a given set of farm practices that emphasise ecological sustainability. Organic agriculture can be characterised as being less driven by off-farm inputs and being better embedded in ecosystem functions. The literature on public goods and non-commodity outputs of organic farms is overwhelming. Most publications address the positive effects of organic farming on soil fertility, biodiversity maintenance and protection of the natural resources of soil, water and air. As a consequence of focusing on public goods, organic agriculture is less productive. Meta-analyses show that organic agriculture yields range between 0·75 and 0·8 of conventional agriculture. Best practice examples from disadvantaged sites and climate conditions show equal or, in the case of subsistence farming in Sub-Saharan Africa, higher productivity of organic agriculture. Hence, organic agriculture is likely to be a good model for productive and sustainable food production. Underfunding in R&D addressing specific bottlenecks of organic agriculture are the main cause for both crop and livestock yield gaps. Therefore, the potential for improving the performance of organic agriculture through agricultural research is huge. Although organic farming is a niche in most countries, it is at the verge of becoming mainstream in leading European countries. Consumer demand has grown over the past two decades and does not seem to be a limiting factor for the future development of organic agriculture. PMID:25221987

  8. Sustainability of organic food production: challenges and innovations.

    PubMed

    Niggli, Urs

    2015-02-01

    The greatest challenge for agriculture is to reduce the trade-offs between productivity and long-term sustainability. Therefore, it is interesting to analyse organic agriculture which is a given set of farm practices that emphasise ecological sustainability. Organic agriculture can be characterised as being less driven by off-farm inputs and being better embedded in ecosystem functions. The literature on public goods and non-commodity outputs of organic farms is overwhelming. Most publications address the positive effects of organic farming on soil fertility, biodiversity maintenance and protection of the natural resources of soil, water and air. As a consequence of focusing on public goods, organic agriculture is less productive. Meta-analyses show that organic agriculture yields range between 0·75 and 0·8 of conventional agriculture. Best practice examples from disadvantaged sites and climate conditions show equal or, in the case of subsistence farming in Sub-Saharan Africa, higher productivity of organic agriculture. Hence, organic agriculture is likely to be a good model for productive and sustainable food production. Underfunding in R&D addressing specific bottlenecks of organic agriculture are the main cause for both crop and livestock yield gaps. Therefore, the potential for improving the performance of organic agriculture through agricultural research is huge. Although organic farming is a niche in most countries, it is at the verge of becoming mainstream in leading European countries. Consumer demand has grown over the past two decades and does not seem to be a limiting factor for the future development of organic agriculture.

  9. Artificial photosynthesis for sustainable fuel and chemical production.

    PubMed

    Kim, Dohyung; Sakimoto, Kelsey K; Hong, Dachao; Yang, Peidong

    2015-03-01

    The apparent incongruity between the increasing consumption of fuels and chemicals and the finite amount of resources has led us to seek means to maintain the sustainability of our society. Artificial photosynthesis, which utilizes sunlight to create high-value chemicals from abundant resources, is considered as the most promising and viable method. This Minireview describes the progress and challenges in the field of artificial photosynthesis in terms of its key components: developments in photoelectrochemical water splitting and recent progress in electrochemical CO2 reduction. Advances in catalysis, concerning the use of renewable hydrogen as a feedstock for major chemical production, are outlined to shed light on the ultimate role of artificial photosynthesis in achieving sustainable chemistry.

  10. Wayanad widows: A study of sustainable rural economic development using renewable energy technology for micro enterprise in Kerala, India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Voorhees, Maire Claire

    This thesis examines the situation of the farmer widows of Wayanad, Kerala through exploration of the underlying agricultural and economic issues leading to farmers' suicides, the current state of the environment in the Wayanad District of Kerala, India, and an economic model of micro-entrepreneurship to address economic and social issues of the surviving widows. Quantitative and qualitative research methods were performed through the assessment and document analysis of archive, newspaper, and published reports to gain a macro perspective. The Environmental Vulnerability Index was used as a tool to evaluate and organize findings of the current environmental conditions in the region. This thesis supports the sustainability concept of considering the economic, ecological, and social impacts when identifying economic development pathways. The goal was to explore the appropriateness of small household solar systems as vehicle in the micro-enterprise model to be a sustainable alternative economic pathway to agriculture for the farmer widows of Wayanad.

  11. Water footprints of cities - indicators for sustainable consumption and production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoff, H.; Döll, P.; Fader, M.; Gerten, D.; Hauser, S.; Siebert, S.

    2013-02-01

    Water footprints have been proposed as sustainability indicators, relating the consumption of goods like food to the amount of water necessary for their production and the impacts of that water use in the source regions. We have further developed the existing water footprint methodology by globally resolving virtual water flows and import and source regions at 5 arc minutes spatial resolution, and by assessing local impacts of export production. Applying this method to three exemplary cities, Berlin, Delhi and Lagos, we find major differences in amounts, composition, and origin of green and blue virtual water imports, due to differences in diets, trade integration and crop water productivities in the source regions. While almost all of Delhi's and Lagos' virtual water imports are of domestic origin, Berlin on average imports from more than 4000 km distance, in particular soy (livestock feed), coffee and cocoa. While 42% of Delhi's virtual water imports are blue water based, the fractions for Berlin and Lagos are 2% and 0.5%, respectively, roughly equal to local drinking water abstractions of these cities. Some of the external source regions of Berlin's virtual water imports appear to be critically water scarce and/or food insecure. However for deriving recommendations on sustainable consumption and trade, further analysis of context-specific costs and benefits associated with export production will be required.

  12. College Students' View of Biotechnology Products and Practices in Sustainable Agriculture Systems

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Anderson, William A.

    2008-01-01

    Sustainable agriculture implies the use of products and practices that sustain production, protect the environment, ensure economic viability, and maintain rural community viability. Disagreement exists as to whether or not the products and practices of modern biotechnological support agricultural sustainability. The purpose of this study was to…

  13. Cooperation Is Not Enough Exploring Social-Ecological Micro-Foundations for Sustainable Common-Pool Resource Use.

    PubMed

    Schill, Caroline; Wijermans, Nanda; Schlüter, Maja; Lindahl, Therese

    2016-01-01

    Cooperation amongst resource users holds the key to overcoming the social dilemma that characterizes community-based common-pool resource management. But is cooperation alone enough to achieve sustainable resource use? The short answer is no. Developing management strategies in a complex social-ecological environment also requires ecological knowledge and approaches to deal with perceived environmental uncertainty. Recent behavioral experimental research indicates variation in the degree to which a group of users can identify a sustainable exploitation level. In this paper, we identify social-ecological micro-foundations that facilitate cooperative sustainable common-pool resource use. We do so by using an agent-based model (ABM) that is informed by behavioral common-pool resource experiments. In these experiments, groups that cooperate do not necessarily manage the resource sustainably, but also over- or underexploit. By reproducing the patterns of the behavioral experiments in a qualitative way, the ABM represents a social-ecological explanation for the experimental observations. We find that the ecological knowledge of each group member cannot sufficiently explain the relationship between cooperation and sustainable resource use. Instead, the development of a sustainable exploitation level depends on the distribution of ecological knowledge among the group members, their influence on each other's knowledge, and the environmental uncertainty the individuals perceive. The study provides insights about critical social-ecological micro-foundations underpinning collective action and sustainable resource management. These insights may inform policy-making, but also point to future research needs regarding the mechanisms of social learning, the development of shared management strategies and the interplay of social and ecological uncertainty. PMID:27556175

  14. Cooperation Is Not Enough—Exploring Social-Ecological Micro-Foundations for Sustainable Common-Pool Resource Use

    PubMed Central

    Wijermans, Nanda; Schlüter, Maja; Lindahl, Therese

    2016-01-01

    Cooperation amongst resource users holds the key to overcoming the social dilemma that characterizes community-based common-pool resource management. But is cooperation alone enough to achieve sustainable resource use? The short answer is no. Developing management strategies in a complex social-ecological environment also requires ecological knowledge and approaches to deal with perceived environmental uncertainty. Recent behavioral experimental research indicates variation in the degree to which a group of users can identify a sustainable exploitation level. In this paper, we identify social-ecological micro-foundations that facilitate cooperative sustainable common-pool resource use. We do so by using an agent-based model (ABM) that is informed by behavioral common-pool resource experiments. In these experiments, groups that cooperate do not necessarily manage the resource sustainably, but also over- or underexploit. By reproducing the patterns of the behavioral experiments in a qualitative way, the ABM represents a social-ecological explanation for the experimental observations. We find that the ecological knowledge of each group member cannot sufficiently explain the relationship between cooperation and sustainable resource use. Instead, the development of a sustainable exploitation level depends on the distribution of ecological knowledge among the group members, their influence on each other’s knowledge, and the environmental uncertainty the individuals perceive. The study provides insights about critical social-ecological micro-foundations underpinning collective action and sustainable resource management. These insights may inform policy-making, but also point to future research needs regarding the mechanisms of social learning, the development of shared management strategies and the interplay of social and ecological uncertainty. PMID:27556175

  15. Cooperation Is Not Enough Exploring Social-Ecological Micro-Foundations for Sustainable Common-Pool Resource Use.

    PubMed

    Schill, Caroline; Wijermans, Nanda; Schlüter, Maja; Lindahl, Therese

    2016-01-01

    Cooperation amongst resource users holds the key to overcoming the social dilemma that characterizes community-based common-pool resource management. But is cooperation alone enough to achieve sustainable resource use? The short answer is no. Developing management strategies in a complex social-ecological environment also requires ecological knowledge and approaches to deal with perceived environmental uncertainty. Recent behavioral experimental research indicates variation in the degree to which a group of users can identify a sustainable exploitation level. In this paper, we identify social-ecological micro-foundations that facilitate cooperative sustainable common-pool resource use. We do so by using an agent-based model (ABM) that is informed by behavioral common-pool resource experiments. In these experiments, groups that cooperate do not necessarily manage the resource sustainably, but also over- or underexploit. By reproducing the patterns of the behavioral experiments in a qualitative way, the ABM represents a social-ecological explanation for the experimental observations. We find that the ecological knowledge of each group member cannot sufficiently explain the relationship between cooperation and sustainable resource use. Instead, the development of a sustainable exploitation level depends on the distribution of ecological knowledge among the group members, their influence on each other's knowledge, and the environmental uncertainty the individuals perceive. The study provides insights about critical social-ecological micro-foundations underpinning collective action and sustainable resource management. These insights may inform policy-making, but also point to future research needs regarding the mechanisms of social learning, the development of shared management strategies and the interplay of social and ecological uncertainty.

  16. Sustainability of pasta production under future climate in Central Italy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dalla Marta, Anna; Baldi, Ada; Orlandini, Simone; Calanca, Pierluigi; Altobelli, Filiberto

    2016-04-01

    In this paper, the impact of future climate on pasta green water footprint (WF) was assessed. The model DSSAT CERES-Wheat was applied to simulate the production of rainfed winter durum wheat in Val d'Orcia (Central Italy), which provides the raw material for making traditional Italian pasta. The model was calibrated and validated for a 15-years period and used to estimate wheat yield and grain green WF. Further, the processing of grain for pasta making was analysed and taken into account for the calculation of the WF of final product. Then, the model was applied on future climate scenarios created with the stochastic generator LARS-WG, starting from a set of ENSEMBLES scenarios. The trend of wheat WF was analysed and the sustainability of the production of pasta in Central Italy was investigated and discussed.

  17. Values and public acceptability dimensions of sustainable egg production.

    PubMed

    Thompson, P B; Appleby, M; Busch, L; Kalof, L; Miele, M; Norwood, B F; Pajor, E

    2011-09-01

    The attributes of egg production that elicit values-based responses include the price and availability of eggs, environmental impacts, food safety or health concerns, and animal welfare. Different social groups have distinct interests regarding the sustainability of egg production that reflect these diverse values. Current scientifically based knowledge about how values and attitudes in these groups can be characterized is uneven and must be derived from studies conducted at varying times and using incomplete study methods. In general, some producer and consumer interests are translated through markets and are mediated by market mechanisms, whereas others are poorly reflected by economic behavior. An array of survey and focus group research has been performed to elicit consumer and activist beliefs about performance goals they would expect from an egg production system. These studies provide evidence that consumers' market behavior may be at odds with their ethical and political beliefs about performance goals. PMID:21844278

  18. Sustainability, productivity, and profitability of agroecosystems under variable rainfall

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vico, G.; Porporato, A. M.

    2010-12-01

    Agriculture is by far the most important user of freshwater and the role of irrigation is projected to increase in face of climate change and increased food requirements. Hence, it is becoming imperative to sustainably manage the available water resources, while simultaneously meeting yield and profitability targets. Simple, widely applicable models of irrigation provide the key irrigation quantities (volumes, frequencies, etc.) for different irrigation schemes as a function of the main soil, crop, and climatic features, including rainfall unpredictability and are necessary for short- and long-term water resource management. We consider often-employed irrigation methods (e.g., surface and sprinkler irrigation systems, as well as modern micro-irrigation techniques) and describe them under a unified conceptual and theoretical framework that includes rainfed agriculture and stress-avoidance irrigation as extreme cases. Mostly analytical solutions for the stochastic steady state of soil moisture probability density function with random rainfall timing and amount are employed to compute water requirements, yields, and net economic gain as a function of climate, crop, and soil parameters. These results provide the necessary starting point to quantify the risks that a certain target yield or profit is not met for given irrigation strategies, with clear implications on food security

  19. Production and properties of micro-cellulose reinforced thermoplastic starch

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kmetty, Á.; Karger-Kocsis, J.; Czigány, T.

    2015-02-01

    Thermoplastic starch (TPS)/micro-fibrillated cellulose (MFC) composites were prepared from maize starch with different amount of distilled water, glycerol and cellulose reinforcement. The components were homogenized by kneader and twin roll technique. The produced TPS and TPS-based polymer composites were qualified by static and dynamic mechanical tests and their morphology was analysed by microscopic techniques. The results showed that the amount of water and the order of the production steps control the properties of both the TPS and its MFC reinforced version. With increasing content of MFC the stiffness and strength of the TPS matrix increased, as expected. Microscopic inspection revealed that the TPS has a homogenous structure and the MFC is well dispersed therein when suitable preparation conditions were selected.

  20. Microalgae as sustainable renewable energy feedstock for biofuel production.

    PubMed

    Medipally, Srikanth Reddy; Yusoff, Fatimah Md; Banerjee, Sanjoy; Shariff, M

    2015-01-01

    The world energy crisis and increased greenhouse gas emissions have driven the search for alternative and environmentally friendly renewable energy sources. According to life cycle analysis, microalgae biofuel is identified as one of the major renewable energy sources for sustainable development, with potential to replace the fossil-based fuels. Microalgae biofuel was devoid of the major drawbacks associated with oil crops and lignocelluloses-based biofuels. Algae-based biofuels are technically and economically viable and cost competitive, require no additional lands, require minimal water use, and mitigate atmospheric CO2. However, commercial production of microalgae biodiesel is still not feasible due to the low biomass concentration and costly downstream processes. The viability of microalgae biodiesel production can be achieved by designing advanced photobioreactors, developing low cost technologies for biomass harvesting, drying, and oil extraction. Commercial production can also be accomplished by improving the genetic engineering strategies to control environmental stress conditions and by engineering metabolic pathways for high lipid production. In addition, new emerging technologies such as algal-bacterial interactions for enhancement of microalgae growth and lipid production are also explored. This review focuses mainly on the problems encountered in the commercial production of microalgae biofuels and the possible techniques to overcome these difficulties.

  1. Microalgae as Sustainable Renewable Energy Feedstock for Biofuel Production

    PubMed Central

    Yusoff, Fatimah Md.; Shariff, M.

    2015-01-01

    The world energy crisis and increased greenhouse gas emissions have driven the search for alternative and environmentally friendly renewable energy sources. According to life cycle analysis, microalgae biofuel is identified as one of the major renewable energy sources for sustainable development, with potential to replace the fossil-based fuels. Microalgae biofuel was devoid of the major drawbacks associated with oil crops and lignocelluloses-based biofuels. Algae-based biofuels are technically and economically viable and cost competitive, require no additional lands, require minimal water use, and mitigate atmospheric CO2. However, commercial production of microalgae biodiesel is still not feasible due to the low biomass concentration and costly downstream processes. The viability of microalgae biodiesel production can be achieved by designing advanced photobioreactors, developing low cost technologies for biomass harvesting, drying, and oil extraction. Commercial production can also be accomplished by improving the genetic engineering strategies to control environmental stress conditions and by engineering metabolic pathways for high lipid production. In addition, new emerging technologies such as algal-bacterial interactions for enhancement of microalgae growth and lipid production are also explored. This review focuses mainly on the problems encountered in the commercial production of microalgae biofuels and the possible techniques to overcome these difficulties. PMID:25874216

  2. Microalgae as sustainable renewable energy feedstock for biofuel production.

    PubMed

    Medipally, Srikanth Reddy; Yusoff, Fatimah Md; Banerjee, Sanjoy; Shariff, M

    2015-01-01

    The world energy crisis and increased greenhouse gas emissions have driven the search for alternative and environmentally friendly renewable energy sources. According to life cycle analysis, microalgae biofuel is identified as one of the major renewable energy sources for sustainable development, with potential to replace the fossil-based fuels. Microalgae biofuel was devoid of the major drawbacks associated with oil crops and lignocelluloses-based biofuels. Algae-based biofuels are technically and economically viable and cost competitive, require no additional lands, require minimal water use, and mitigate atmospheric CO2. However, commercial production of microalgae biodiesel is still not feasible due to the low biomass concentration and costly downstream processes. The viability of microalgae biodiesel production can be achieved by designing advanced photobioreactors, developing low cost technologies for biomass harvesting, drying, and oil extraction. Commercial production can also be accomplished by improving the genetic engineering strategies to control environmental stress conditions and by engineering metabolic pathways for high lipid production. In addition, new emerging technologies such as algal-bacterial interactions for enhancement of microalgae growth and lipid production are also explored. This review focuses mainly on the problems encountered in the commercial production of microalgae biofuels and the possible techniques to overcome these difficulties. PMID:25874216

  3. Modeling Sustainable Bioenergy Feedstock Production in the Alps

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kraxner, Florian; Leduc, Sylvain; Kindermann, Georg; Fuss, Sabine; Pietsch, Stephan; Lakyda, Ivan; Serrano Leon, Hernan; Shchepashchenko, Dmitry; Shvidenko, Anatoly

    2016-04-01

    Sustainability of bioenergy is often indicated by the neutrality of emissions at the conversion site while the feedstock production site is assumed to be carbon neutral. Recent research shows that sustainability of bioenergy systems starts with feedstock management. Even if sustainable forest management is applied, different management types can impact ecosystem services substantially. This study examines different sustainable forest management systems together with an optimal planning of green-field bioenergy plants in the Alps. Two models - the biophysical global forest model (G4M) and a techno-economic engineering model for optimizing renewable energy systems (BeWhere) are implemented. G4M is applied in a forward looking manner in order to provide information on the forest under different management scenarios: (1) managing the forest for maximizing the carbon sequestration; or (2) managing the forest for maximizing the harvestable wood amount for bioenergy production. The results from the forest modelling are then picked up by the engineering model BeWhere, which optimizes the bioenergy production in terms of energy demand (power and heat demand by population) and supply (wood harvesting potentials), feedstock harvesting and transport costs, the location and capacity of the bioenergy plant as well as the energy distribution logistics with respect to heat and electricity (e.g. considering existing grids for electricity or district heating etc.). First results highlight the importance of considering ecosystem services under different scenarios and in a geographically explicit manner. While aiming at producing the same amount of bioenergy under both forest management scenarios, it turns out that in scenario (1) a substantially larger area (distributed across the Alps) will need to be used for producing (and harvesting) the necessary amount of feedstock than under scenario (2). This result clearly shows that scenario (2) has to be seen as an "intensification

  4. Sustainability of biofuels and renewable chemicals production from biomass.

    PubMed

    Kircher, Manfred

    2015-12-01

    In the sectors of biofuel and renewable chemicals the big feedstock demand asks, first, to expand the spectrum of carbon sources beyond primary biomass, second, to establish circular processing chains and, third, to prioritize product sectors exclusively depending on carbon: chemicals and heavy-duty fuels. Large-volume production lines will reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emission significantly but also low-volume chemicals are indispensable in building 'low-carbon' industries. The foreseeable feedstock change initiates innovation, securing societal wealth in the industrialized world and creating employment in regions producing biomass. When raising the investments in rerouting to sustainable biofuel and chemicals today competitiveness with fossil-based fuel and chemicals is a strong issue. Many countries adopted comprehensive bioeconomy strategies to tackle this challenge. These public actions are mostly biased to biofuel but should give well-balanced attention to renewable chemicals as well.

  5. Quality and safety requirements for sustainable phage therapy products.

    PubMed

    Pirnay, Jean-Paul; Blasdel, Bob G; Bretaudeau, Laurent; Buckling, Angus; Chanishvili, Nina; Clark, Jason R; Corte-Real, Sofia; Debarbieux, Laurent; Dublanchet, Alain; De Vos, Daniel; Gabard, Jérôme; Garcia, Miguel; Goderdzishvili, Marina; Górski, Andrzej; Hardcastle, John; Huys, Isabelle; Kutter, Elizabeth; Lavigne, Rob; Merabishvili, Maia; Olchawa, Ewa; Parikka, Kaarle J; Patey, Olivier; Pouilot, Flavie; Resch, Gregory; Rohde, Christine; Scheres, Jacques; Skurnik, Mikael; Vaneechoutte, Mario; Van Parys, Luc; Verbeken, Gilbert; Zizi, Martin; Van den Eede, Guy

    2015-07-01

    The worldwide antibiotic crisis has led to a renewed interest in phage therapy. Since time immemorial phages control bacterial populations on Earth. Potent lytic phages against bacterial pathogens can be isolated from the environment or selected from a collection in a matter of days. In addition, phages have the capacity to rapidly overcome bacterial resistances, which will inevitably emerge. To maximally exploit these advantage phages have over conventional drugs such as antibiotics, it is important that sustainable phage products are not submitted to the conventional long medicinal product development and licensing pathway. There is a need for an adapted framework, including realistic production and quality and safety requirements, that allows a timely supplying of phage therapy products for 'personalized therapy' or for public health or medical emergencies. This paper enumerates all phage therapy product related quality and safety risks known to the authors, as well as the tests that can be performed to minimize these risks, only to the extent needed to protect the patients and to allow and advance responsible phage therapy and research.

  6. Feeding nine billion: the challenge to sustainable crop production.

    PubMed

    Gregory, Peter J; George, Timothy S

    2011-11-01

    In the recent past there was a widespread working assumption in many countries that problems of food production had been solved, and that food security was largely a matter of distribution and access to be achieved principally by open markets. The events of 2008 challenged these assumptions, and made public a much wider debate about the costs of current food production practices to the environment and whether these could be sustained. As in the past 50 years, it is anticipated that future increases in crop production will be achieved largely by increasing yields per unit area rather than by increasing the area of cropped land. However, as yields have increased, so the ratio of photosynthetic energy captured to energy expended in crop production has decreased. This poses a considerable challenge: how to increase yield while simultaneously reducing energy consumption (allied to greenhouse gas emissions) and utilizing resources such as water and phosphate more efficiently. Given the timeframe in which the increased production has to be realized, most of the increase will need to come from crop genotypes that are being bred now, together with known agronomic and management practices that are currently under-developed.

  7. Toward cropping systems that enhance productivity and sustainability

    PubMed Central

    Cook, R. James

    2006-01-01

    The defining features of any cropping system are (i) the crop rotation and (ii) the kind or intensity of tillage. The trend worldwide starting in the late 20th century has been (i) to specialize competitively in the production of two, three, a single, or closely related crops such as different market classes of wheat and barley, and (ii) to use direct seeding, also known as no-till, to cut costs and save soil, time, and fuel. The availability of glyphosate- and insect-resistant varieties of soybeans, corn, cotton, and canola has helped greatly to address weed and insect pest pressures favored by direct seeding these crops. However, little has been done through genetics and breeding to address diseases caused by residue- and soil-inhabiting pathogens that remain major obstacles to wider adoption of these potentially more productive and sustainable systems. Instead, the gains have been due largely to innovations in management, including enhancement of root defense by antibiotic-producing rhizosphere-inhabiting bacteria inhibitory to root pathogens. Historically, new varieties have facilitated wider adoption of new management, and changes in management have facilitated wider adoption of new varieties. Although actual yields may be lower in direct-seed compared with conventional cropping systems, largely due to diseases, the yield potential is higher because of more available water and increases in soil organic matter. Achieving the full production potential of these more-sustainable cropping systems must now await the development of varieties adapted to or resistant to the hazards shown to account for the yield depressions associated with direct seeding. PMID:17130454

  8. How can we improve the environmental sustainability of poultry production?

    PubMed

    Leinonen, Ilkka; Kyriazakis, Ilias

    2016-08-01

    The review presents results of recent life cycle assessment studies aiming to quantify and improve the environmental performance of UK poultry production systems, including broiler meat, egg and turkey meat production. Although poultry production has been found to be relatively environmentally friendly compared with the production of other livestock commodities, it still contributes to environmental impacts, such as global warming, eutrophication and acidification. Amongst different sub-processes, feed production and transport contributes about 70 % to the global warming potential of poultry systems, whereas manure management contributes about 40-60 % to their eutrophication potential and acidification potential, respectively. All these impacts can be reduced by improving the feed efficiency, either by changing the birds through genetic selection or by making the feed more digestible (e.g. by using additives such as enzymes). However, although genetic selection has the potential to reduce the resources needed for broiler production (including feed consumption), the changing need of certain feed ingredients, most notably protein sources as a result of changes in bird requirements may limit the benefits of this strategy. The use of alternative feed ingredients, such as locally grown protein crops and agricultural by-products, as a replacement of South American grown soya, can potentially also lead to improvements in several environmental impact categories, as long as such feeding strategies have no negative effect on bird performance. Other management options, such as improving poultry housing and new strategies for manure management have also the potential to further improve the environmental sustainability of the poultry industries in Europe.

  9. How can we improve the environmental sustainability of poultry production?

    PubMed

    Leinonen, Ilkka; Kyriazakis, Ilias

    2016-08-01

    The review presents results of recent life cycle assessment studies aiming to quantify and improve the environmental performance of UK poultry production systems, including broiler meat, egg and turkey meat production. Although poultry production has been found to be relatively environmentally friendly compared with the production of other livestock commodities, it still contributes to environmental impacts, such as global warming, eutrophication and acidification. Amongst different sub-processes, feed production and transport contributes about 70 % to the global warming potential of poultry systems, whereas manure management contributes about 40-60 % to their eutrophication potential and acidification potential, respectively. All these impacts can be reduced by improving the feed efficiency, either by changing the birds through genetic selection or by making the feed more digestible (e.g. by using additives such as enzymes). However, although genetic selection has the potential to reduce the resources needed for broiler production (including feed consumption), the changing need of certain feed ingredients, most notably protein sources as a result of changes in bird requirements may limit the benefits of this strategy. The use of alternative feed ingredients, such as locally grown protein crops and agricultural by-products, as a replacement of South American grown soya, can potentially also lead to improvements in several environmental impact categories, as long as such feeding strategies have no negative effect on bird performance. Other management options, such as improving poultry housing and new strategies for manure management have also the potential to further improve the environmental sustainability of the poultry industries in Europe. PMID:26935025

  10. Animal welfare towards sustainability in pork meat production.

    PubMed

    Velarde, Antonio; Fàbrega, Emma; Blanco-Penedo, Isabel; Dalmau, Antoni

    2015-11-01

    Animal welfare is an important pillar of sustainability in meat production and is associated with other aspects of this concept, such as animal health, productivity, food safety, food quality and efficiency from a cost of production perspective. These interactions are present at all stages of the production cycle, from the beginning of the animals' farm life until their slaughter. On farm, some of the main welfare issues are related to neonatal mortality and low level of sensory input, which are likely to engender stereotypes and injurious behaviours, such as tail-biting. Pre-slaughter handling refers to the interaction between humans and animals prior to and during transport and at slaughter. Strategies to reduce pre-slaughter stress will benefit carcass and meat quality, being the training of stockpeople one of the most cost-effective policies to improve animal welfare. These strategies include also the implementation of standard monitoring procedures to detect signs of consciousness after stunning, before sticking and during bleeding until death occurs. PMID:26013042

  11. Improved sustainability of feedstock production with sludge and interacting mycorrhiza.

    PubMed

    Seleiman, Mahmoud F; Santanen, Arja; Kleemola, Jouko; Stoddard, Frederick L; Mäkelä, Pirjo S A

    2013-05-01

    Recycling nutrients saves energy and improves agricultural sustainability. Sewage sludge contains 2.6% P and 3.1% N, so the availability of these nutrients was investigated using four crops grown in either soil or sand. Further attention was paid to the role of mycorrhiza in improvement of nutrient availability. The content of heavy metals and metalloids in the feedstock was analyzed. Sewage sludge application resulted in greater biomass accumulation in ryegrass than comparable single applications of either synthetic fertilizer or digested sludge. Sewage sludge application resulted in more numerous mycorrhizal spores in soil and increased root colonization in comparison to synthetic fertilizer. All plants studied had mycorrhizal colonized roots, with the highest colonization rate in maize, followed by hemp. Sewage sludge application resulted in the highest P uptake in all soil-grown plants. In conclusion, sewage sludge application increased feedstock yield, provided beneficial use for organic wastes, and contributed to the sustainability of bioenergy feedstock production systems. It also improves the soil conditions and plant nutrition through colonization by mycorrhizal fungi as well as reducing leaching and need of synthetic fertilizers.

  12. Contributions of roots and rootstocks to sustainable, intensified crop production.

    PubMed

    Gregory, Peter J; Atkinson, Christopher J; Bengough, A Glyn; Else, Mark A; Fernández-Fernández, Felicidad; Harrison, Richard J; Schmidt, Sonja

    2013-03-01

    Sustainable intensification is seen as the main route for meeting the world's increasing demands for food and fibre. As demands mount for greater efficiency in the use of resources to achieve this goal, so the focus on roots and rootstocks and their role in acquiring water and nutrients, and overcoming pests and pathogens, is increasing. The purpose of this review is to explore some of the ways in which understanding root systems and their interactions with soils could contribute to the development of more sustainable systems of intensive production. Physical interactions with soil particles limit root growth if soils are dense, but root-soil contact is essential for optimal growth and uptake of water and nutrients. X-ray microtomography demonstrated that maize roots elongated more rapidly with increasing root-soil contact, as long as mechanical impedance was not limiting root elongation, while lupin was less sensitive to changes in root-soil contact. In addition to selecting for root architecture and rhizosphere properties, the growth of many plants in cultivated systems is profoundly affected by selection of an appropriate rootstock. Several mechanisms for scion control by rootstocks have been suggested, but the causal signals are still uncertain and may differ between crop species. Linkage map locations for quantitative trait loci for disease resistance and other traits of interest in rootstock breeding are becoming available. Designing root systems and rootstocks for specific environments is becoming a feasible target.

  13. Genomics for food safety and sustainable animal production.

    PubMed

    Harlizius, Barbara; van Wijk, Rik; Merks, Jan W M

    2004-09-30

    There is a growing concern in society about the safety of animal-derived food, the health and welfare of farm animals and the sustainability of current animal production systems. Along farm animal, breeding genomics may contribute to a solution for these concerns. The use of genomic analysis tools, to achieve genetic progress in typical out-bred populations of farm animals, seems to be more difficult compared to 'model' organisms or plants. However, identification of positional candidate genes may be accelerated by linkage disequilibrium (LD) mapping. Recording of sustainable traits requires a large financial and logistic input and the economic advantages for the market are not as clear as for traditional selection traits. Examples show that the major genes causing variability for similar traits in different species are rarely the same. Therefore, for breeding purposes genomic analysis of the species of interest is needed. The fundamental knowledge obtained on the genetic architecture of complex traits will open new perspectives for the use of DNA tests in selection schemes. For food safety and traceability, DNA-based techniques evolve for monitoring and early warning systems.

  14. Towards sustainable sources for omega-3 fatty acids production.

    PubMed

    Adarme-Vega, T Catalina; Thomas-Hall, Skye R; Schenk, Peer M

    2014-04-01

    Omega-3 fatty acids eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docohexaenoic acid (DHA), provide significant health benefits for brain function/development and cardiovascular conditions. However, most EPA and DHA for human consumption is sourced from small fatty fish caught in coastal waters and, with depleting global fish stocks, recent research has been directed towards more sustainable sources. These include aquaculture with plant-based feeds, krill, marine microalgae, microalgae-like protists and genetically-modified plants. To meet the increasing demand for EPA and DHA, further developments are needed towards land-based sources. In particular large-scale cultivation of microalgae and plants is likely to become a reality with expected reductions in production costs, yield increasese and the adequate addressing of genetically modified food acceptance issues. PMID:24607804

  15. Towards sustainable sources for omega-3 fatty acids production.

    PubMed

    Adarme-Vega, T Catalina; Thomas-Hall, Skye R; Schenk, Peer M

    2014-04-01

    Omega-3 fatty acids eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docohexaenoic acid (DHA), provide significant health benefits for brain function/development and cardiovascular conditions. However, most EPA and DHA for human consumption is sourced from small fatty fish caught in coastal waters and, with depleting global fish stocks, recent research has been directed towards more sustainable sources. These include aquaculture with plant-based feeds, krill, marine microalgae, microalgae-like protists and genetically-modified plants. To meet the increasing demand for EPA and DHA, further developments are needed towards land-based sources. In particular large-scale cultivation of microalgae and plants is likely to become a reality with expected reductions in production costs, yield increasese and the adequate addressing of genetically modified food acceptance issues.

  16. Perspectives on achieving sustainable energy production and use

    EPA Science Inventory

    The traditional definition of sustainability calls for polices and strategies that meet society's present needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. Achieving operational sustainability requires three critical elements: advances in scien...

  17. Assessing multimetric aspects of sustainability: Application to a bioenergy crop production system in East Tennessee

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Parish, Esther S.; Dale, Virginia H.; English, Burton C.; Jackson, Samuel W.; Tyler, Donald D.

    2016-02-26

    This paper connects the science of sustainability theory with applied aspects of sustainability deployment. A suite of 35 sustainability indicators spanning six environmental, three economic, and three social categories has been proposed for comparing the sustainability of bioenergy production systems across different feedstock types and locations. A recent demonstration-scale switchgrass-to-ethanol production system located in East Tennessee is used to assess the availability of sustainability indicator data and associated measurements for the feedstock production and logistics portions of the biofuel supply chain. Knowledge pertaining to the available indicators is distributed within a hierarchical decision tree framework to generate an assessment ofmore » the overall sustainability of this no-till switchgrass production system relative to two alternative business-as-usual scenarios of unmanaged pasture and tilled corn production. The relative contributions of the social, economic and environmental information are determined for the overall trajectory of this bioenergy system s sustainability under each scenario. Within this East Tennessee context, switchgrass production shows potential for improving environmental and social sustainability trajectories without adverse economic impacts, thereby leading to potential for overall enhancement in sustainability within this local agricultural system. Given the early stages of cellulosic ethanol production, it is currently difficult to determine quantitative values for all 35 sustainability indicators across the entire biofuel supply chain. This case study demonstrates that integration of qualitative sustainability indicator ratings may increase holistic understanding of a bioenergy system in the absence of complete information.« less

  18. Metabolic Engineering toward Sustainable Production of Nylon-6.

    PubMed

    Turk, Stefan C H J; Kloosterman, Wigard P; Ninaber, Dennis K; Kolen, Karin P A M; Knutova, Julia; Suir, Erwin; Schürmann, Martin; Raemakers-Franken, Petronella C; Müller, Monika; de Wildeman, Stefaan M A; Raamsdonk, Leonie M; van der Pol, Ruud; Wu, Liang; Temudo, Margarida F; van der Hoeven, Rob A M; Akeroyd, Michiel; van der Stoel, Roland E; Noorman, Henk J; Bovenberg, Roel A L; Trefzer, Axel C

    2016-01-15

    Nylon-6 is a bulk polymer used for many applications. It consists of the non-natural building block 6-aminocaproic acid, the linear form of caprolactam. Via a retro-synthetic approach, two synthetic pathways were identified for the fermentative production of 6-aminocaproic acid. Both pathways require yet unreported novel biocatalytic steps. We demonstrated proof of these bioconversions by in vitro enzyme assays with a set of selected candidate proteins expressed in Escherichia coli. One of the biosynthetic pathways starts with 2-oxoglutarate and contains bioconversions of the ketoacid elongation pathway known from methanogenic archaea. This pathway was selected for implementation in E. coli and yielded 6-aminocaproic acid at levels up to 160 mg/L in lab-scale batch fermentations. The total amount of 6-aminocaproic acid and related intermediates generated by this pathway exceeded 2 g/L in lab-scale fed-batch fermentations, indicating its potential for further optimization toward large-scale sustainable production of nylon-6.

  19. Exploiting microRNA Specificity and Selectivity: Paving a Sustainable Path Towards Precision Medicine.

    PubMed

    Santulli, Gaetano

    2015-01-01

    In his State of the Union address before both chambers of the US Congress, President Barack Obama called for increased investment in US infrastructure and research and announced the launch of a new Precision Medicine Initiative, aiming to accelerate biomedical discovery. Due to their well-established selectivity and specificity, microRNAs can represent a useful tool, both in diagnosis and therapy, in forging the path towards the achievement of precision medicine. This introductory chapter represents a guide for the Reader in examining the functional roles of microRNAs in the most diverse aspects of clinical practice, which will be explored in this third volume of the microRNA trilogy. PMID:26663175

  20. Exploiting microRNA Specificity and Selectivity: Paving a Sustainable Path Towards Precision Medicine

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    In his State of the Union address before both chambers of the US Congress, President Barack Obama called for increased investment in US infrastructure and research and announced the launch of a new Precision Medicine Initiative, aiming to accelerate biomedical discovery. Due to their well-established selectivity and specificity, microRNAs can represent a useful tool, both in diagnosis and therapy, in forging the path towards the achievement of precision medicine. This introductory chapter represents a guide for the Reader in examining the functional roles of microRNAs in the most diverse aspects of clinical practice, which will be explored in this third volume of the microRNA trilogy. PMID:26663175

  1. Environmental impacts and sustainability of egg production systems.

    PubMed

    Xin, H; Gates, R S; Green, A R; Mitloehner, F M; Moore, P A; Wathes, C M

    2011-01-01

    As part of a systemic assessment toward social sustainability of egg production, we have reviewed current knowledge about the environmental impacts of egg production systems and identified topics requiring further research. Currently, we know that 1) high-rise cage houses generally have poorer air quality and emit more ammonia than manure belt (MB) cage houses; 2) manure removal frequency in MB houses greatly affects ammonia emissions; 3) emissions from manure storage are largely affected by storage conditions, including ventilation rate, manure moisture content, air temperature, and stacking profile; 4) more baseline data on air emissions from high-rise and MB houses are being collected in the United States to complement earlier measurements; 5) noncage houses generally have poorer air quality (ammonia and dust levels) than cage houses; 6) noncage houses tend to be colder during cold weather due to a lower stocking density than caged houses, leading to greater feed and fuel energy use; 7) hens in noncage houses are less efficient in resource (feed, energy, and land) utilization, leading to a greater carbon footprint; 8) excessive application of hen manure to cropland can lead to nutrient runoff to water bodies; 9) hen manure on open (free) range may be subject to runoff during rainfall, although quantitative data are lacking; 10) mitigation technologies exist to reduce generation and emission of noxious gases and dust; however, work is needed to evaluate their economic feasibility and optimize design; and 11) dietary modification shows promise for mitigating emissions. Further research is needed on 1) indoor air quality, barn emissions, thermal conditions, and energy use in alternative hen housing systems (1-story floor, aviary, and enriched cage systems), along with conventional housing systems under different production conditions; 2) environmental footprint for different US egg production systems through life cycle assessment; 3) practical means to mitigate air

  2. GM crops, the environment and sustainable food production.

    PubMed

    Raven, Peter H

    2014-12-01

    Today, over 7.1 billion people rely on the earth's resources for sustenance, and nearly a billion people are malnourished, their minds and bodies unable to develop properly. Globally, population is expected to rise to more than 9 billion by 2050. Given the combined pressures of human population growth, the rapidly growing desire for increased levels of consumption, and the continued use of inappropriate technologies, it is not surprising that humans are driving organisms to extinction at an unprecedented rate. Many aspects of the sustainable functioning of the natural world are breaking down in the face of human-induced pressures including our individual and collective levels of consumption and our widespread and stubborn use of destructive technologies. Clearly, agriculture must undergo a redesign and be better and more effectively managed so as to contribute as well as possible to feeding people, while at the same time we strive to lessen the tragic loss of biodiversity and damage to all of its productive systems that the world is experiencing. For GM crops to be part of the solution, biosafety assessments should not be overly politically-driven or a burdensome impedance to delivering this technology broadly. Biosafety scientists and policy makers need to recognize the undeniable truth that inappropriate actions resulting in indecision also have negative consequences. It is no longer acceptable to delay the use of any strategy that is safe and will help us achieve the ability to feed the world's people.

  3. Sustainable Energy Production from Jatropha Bio-Diesel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yadav, Amit Kumar; Krishna, Vijai

    2012-10-01

    The demand for petroleum has risen rapidly due to increasing industrialization and modernization of the world. This economic development has led to a huge demand for energy, where the major part of that energy is derived from fossil sources such as petroleum, coal and natural gas. Continued use of petroleum sourced fuels is now widely recognized as unsustainable because of depleting supplies. There is a growing interest in using Jatropha curcas L. oil as the feedstock for biodiesel production because it is non-edible and thus does not compromise the edible oils, which are mainly used for food consumption. Further, J. curcas L. seed has a high content of free fatty acids that is converted in to biodiesel by trans esterification with alcohol in the presence of a catalyst. The biodiesel produced has similar properties to that of petroleum-based diesel. Biodiesel fuel has better properties than petro diesel fuel; it is renewable, biodegradable, non-toxic, and essentially free of sulfur and aromatics. Biodiesel seems to be a realistic fuel for future. Biodiesel has the potential to economically, socially, and environmentally benefit communities as well as countries, and to contribute toward their sustainable development.

  4. Computational study of plasma sustainability in radio frequency micro-discharges

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, Y.; Jiang, W.; Zhang, Q. Z.; Bogaerts, A.

    2014-05-21

    We apply an implicit particle-in-cell Monte-Carlo (PIC-MC) method to study a radio-frequency argon microdischarge at steady state in the glow discharge limit, in which the microdischarge is sustained by secondary electron emission from the electrodes. The plasma density, electron energy distribution function (EEDF), and electron temperature are calculated in a wide range of operating conditions, including driving voltage, microdischarge gap, and pressure. Also, the effect of gap size scaling (in the range of 50-1000 μm) on the plasma sustaining voltage and peak electron density at atmospheric pressure is examined, which has not been explored before. In our simulations, three different EEDFs, i.e., a so-called three temperature hybrid mode, a two temperature α mode, and a two temperature γ mode distribution, are identified at different gaps and voltages. The maximum sustaining voltage to avoid a transition from the glow mode to an arc is predicted, as well as the minimum sustaining voltage for a steady glow discharge. Our calculations elucidate that secondary electrons play an essential role in sustaining the discharge, and as a result the relationship between breakdown voltage and gap spacing is far away from the Paschen law at atmospheric pressure.

  5. The Role of Sustained Attention in the Production of Conjoined Noun Phrases: An Individual Differences Study

    PubMed Central

    Jongman, Suzanne R.; Meyer, Antje S.; Roelofs, Ardi

    2015-01-01

    It has previously been shown that language production, performed simultaneously with a nonlinguistic task, involves sustained attention. Sustained attention concerns the ability to maintain alertness over time. Here, we aimed to replicate the previous finding by showing that individuals call upon sustained attention when they plan single noun phrases (e.g., "the carrot") and perform a manual arrow categorization task. In addition, we investigated whether speakers also recruit sustained attention when they produce conjoined noun phrases (e.g., "the carrot and the bucket") describing two pictures, that is, when both the first and second task are linguistic. We found that sustained attention correlated with the proportion of abnormally slow phrase-production responses. Individuals with poor sustained attention displayed a greater number of very slow responses than individuals with better sustained attention. Importantly, this relationship was obtained both for the production of single phrases while performing a nonlinguistic manual task, and the production of noun phrase conjunctions in referring to two spatially separated objects. Inhibition and updating abilities were also measured. These scores did not correlate with our measure of sustained attention, suggesting that sustained attention and executive control are distinct. Overall, the results suggest that planning conjoined noun phrases involves sustained attention, and that language production happens less automatically than has often been assumed. PMID:26335441

  6. A low-temperature co-fired ceramic micro-reactor system for high-efficiency on-site hydrogen production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiang, Bo; Maeder, Thomas; Santis-Alvarez, Alejandro J.; Poulikakos, Dimos; Muralt, Paul

    2015-01-01

    A ceramic-based, meso-scale fuel processor for on-board production of syngas fuel was demonstrated for applications in micro-scale solid-oxide fuel cells (μ-SOFCs). The processor had a total dimension of 12 mm × 40 mm × 2 mm, the gas reforming micro reactor occupying the hot end of a cantilever had outer dimensions of 12 × 18 mm. The device was fabricated through a novel progressive lamination process in low-temperature co-fired ceramic (LTCC) technology. Both, heating function and desired fluidic structures were integrated monolithically into the processor. Using catalytic partial oxidation of a hydrocarbon fuel (propane) as a reaction model, a thermally self-sustaining hydrogen production was achieved. The output flow is sufficiently high to drive an optimized single membrane μSOFC cell of about the same footprint as the micro reactor. Microsystem design, fabrication, catalyst integration as well as the chemical characterization are discussed in detail.

  7. Sustainable bioenergy production from marginal lands in the US Midwest.

    PubMed

    Gelfand, Ilya; Sahajpal, Ritvik; Zhang, Xuesong; Izaurralde, R César; Gross, Katherine L; Robertson, G Philip

    2013-01-24

    Legislation on biofuels production in the USA and Europe is directing food crops towards the production of grain-based ethanol, which can have detrimental consequences for soil carbon sequestration, nitrous oxide emissions, nitrate pollution, biodiversity and human health. An alternative is to grow lignocellulosic (cellulosic) crops on 'marginal' lands. Cellulosic feedstocks can have positive environmental outcomes and could make up a substantial proportion of future energy portfolios. However, the availability of marginal lands for cellulosic feedstock production, and the resulting greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, remains uncertain. Here we evaluate the potential for marginal lands in ten Midwestern US states to produce sizeable amounts of biomass and concurrently mitigate GHG emissions. In a comparative assessment of six alternative cropping systems over 20 years, we found that successional herbaceous vegetation, once well established, has a direct GHG emissions mitigation capacity that rivals that of purpose-grown crops (-851 ± 46 grams of CO(2) equivalent emissions per square metre per year (gCO(2)e m(-2) yr(-1))). If fertilized, these communities have the capacity to produce about 63 ± 5 gigajoules of ethanol energy per hectare per year. By contrast, an adjacent, no-till corn-soybean-wheat rotation produces on average 41 ± 1 gigajoules of biofuel energy per hectare per year and has a net direct mitigation capacity of -397 ± 32 gCO(2)e m(-2) yr(-1); a continuous corn rotation would probably produce about 62 ± 7 gigajoules of biofuel energy per hectare per year, with 13% less mitigation. We also perform quantitative modelling of successional vegetation on marginal lands in the region at a resolution of 0.4 hectares, constrained by the requirement that each modelled location be within 80 kilometres of a potential biorefinery. Our results suggest that such vegetation could produce about 21 gigalitres of ethanol per year from

  8. Sustainable bioenergy production from marginal lands in the US Midwest.

    PubMed

    Gelfand, Ilya; Sahajpal, Ritvik; Zhang, Xuesong; Izaurralde, R César; Gross, Katherine L; Robertson, G Philip

    2013-01-24

    Legislation on biofuels production in the USA and Europe is directing food crops towards the production of grain-based ethanol, which can have detrimental consequences for soil carbon sequestration, nitrous oxide emissions, nitrate pollution, biodiversity and human health. An alternative is to grow lignocellulosic (cellulosic) crops on 'marginal' lands. Cellulosic feedstocks can have positive environmental outcomes and could make up a substantial proportion of future energy portfolios. However, the availability of marginal lands for cellulosic feedstock production, and the resulting greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, remains uncertain. Here we evaluate the potential for marginal lands in ten Midwestern US states to produce sizeable amounts of biomass and concurrently mitigate GHG emissions. In a comparative assessment of six alternative cropping systems over 20 years, we found that successional herbaceous vegetation, once well established, has a direct GHG emissions mitigation capacity that rivals that of purpose-grown crops (-851 ± 46 grams of CO(2) equivalent emissions per square metre per year (gCO(2)e m(-2) yr(-1))). If fertilized, these communities have the capacity to produce about 63 ± 5 gigajoules of ethanol energy per hectare per year. By contrast, an adjacent, no-till corn-soybean-wheat rotation produces on average 41 ± 1 gigajoules of biofuel energy per hectare per year and has a net direct mitigation capacity of -397 ± 32 gCO(2)e m(-2) yr(-1); a continuous corn rotation would probably produce about 62 ± 7 gigajoules of biofuel energy per hectare per year, with 13% less mitigation. We also perform quantitative modelling of successional vegetation on marginal lands in the region at a resolution of 0.4 hectares, constrained by the requirement that each modelled location be within 80 kilometres of a potential biorefinery. Our results suggest that such vegetation could produce about 21 gigalitres of ethanol per year from

  9. Double- and relay-cropping oilseed and biomass crops for sustainable energy production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Economically and environmentally sustainable bioenergy production requires strategic integration of biofuel crops into modern cropping systems. Double- and relay-cropping can offer a means of increasing production efficiency to boost profits and provide environmental benefits through crop diversific...

  10. Atomic oxygen and O2(a^1δg) density measurements in a Micro-Cathode Sustained Discharge in oxygen and rare gases/oxygen mixtures.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Magne, L.; Bauville, G.; Jeanney, P.; Lacour, B.; Puech, V.

    2006-10-01

    This work presents first experimental investigations of atomic oxygen density and O2(a^1δg) production in a Micro-Cathode Sustained Discharge (MCSD) in pure O2 and in argon (or helium)/O2 mixtures for a total pressure up to 130 Torr. A micro-hollow cathode discharge (MHCD), 200 micron in diameter, is used as plasma cathode for a discharge between the MHCD and a third electrode placed 8 mm away. In pure oxygen, the absolute atom density was measured by Two-photon Absorption Laser Induced Fluorescence (TALIF). It will be shown that, for a current of 1 mA and a pressure of 50 Torr, an atomic density of 3 10^15 cm-3 is obtained near the micro-hollow cathode, and it decreases to 5 10^14 cm-3 near the third electrode. If the MCSD is switched off while the MHCD is still on, the atom density decreases by an order of magnitude. 2D cartography of the atom distributions will be presented for different operating conditions. The density of the O2(a^1δg) metastable state was evaluated from the intensity of the 1.27 μm transition measured with a calibrated InGaAs detector. It will be shown that O2(a^1δg) densities up to 10^16 cm-3 have been obtained for 10% O2 in an argon/oxygen mixture at 50 Torr. Work is in progress to determine conditions for generating higher O2(a^1δg) densities.

  11. The Future of Pork Production in the World: Towards Sustainable, Welfare-Positive Systems

    PubMed Central

    McGlone, John J.

    2013-01-01

    Simple Summary More pork is eaten in the world than any other meat. Making production systems and practices more sustainable will benefit the animals, the planet and people. A system is presented by which production practices are evaluated using a sustainability matrix. The matrix shows why some practices are more common in some countries and regions and the impediments to more sustainable systems. This method can be used to assess the sustainability of production practices in the future where objective, science-based information is presented alongside ethical and economic information to make the most informed decisions. Finally, this paper points to current pork production practices that are more and less sustainable. Abstract Among land animals, more pork is eaten in the world than any other meat. The earth holds about one billion pigs who deliver over 100 mmt of pork to people for consumption. Systems of pork production changed from a forest-based to pasture-based to dirt lots and finally into specially-designed buildings. The world pork industry is variable and complex not just in production methods but in economics and cultural value. A systematic analysis of pork industry sustainability was performed. Sustainable production methods are considered at three levels using three examples in this paper: production system, penning system and for a production practice. A sustainability matrix was provided for each example. In a comparison of indoor vs. outdoor systems, the food safety/zoonoses concerns make current outdoor systems unsustainable. The choice of keeping pregnant sows in group pens or individual crates is complex in that the outcome of a sustainability assessment leads to the conclusion that group penning is more sustainable in the EU and certain USA states, but the individual crate is currently more sustainable in other USA states, Asia and Latin America. A comparison of conventional physical castration with immunological castration shows that the less

  12. Applying fuel cell experience to sustainable power products

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    King, Joseph M.; O'Day, Michael J.

    Fuel cell power plants have demonstrated high efficiency, environmental friendliness, excellent transient response, and superior reliability and durability in spacecraft and stationary applications. Broader application of fuel cell technology promises significant contribution to sustainable global economic growth, but requires improvement to size, cost, fuel flexibility and operating flexibility. International Fuel Cells (IFC) is applying lessons learned from delivery of more than 425 fuel cell power plants and 3 million h of operation to the development of product technology which captures that promise. Key findings at the fuel cell power plant level include: (1) ancillary components account for more than 40% of the weight and nearly all unscheduled outages of hydrocarbon-fuelled power plants; a higher level of integration and simplification is required to achieve reasonable characteristics, (2) hydrocarbon fuel cell power plant components are highly interactive; the fuel processing approach and power plant operating pressure are major determinants of overall efficiency, and (3) achieving the durability required for heavy duty vehicles and stationary applications requires simultaneous satisfaction of electrochemical, materials and mechanical considerations in the design of the cell stack and other power plant components. Practical designs must minimize application specific equipment. Related lessons for stationary fuel cell power plants include: (1) within fuel specification limits, natural gas varies widely in heating value, minor constituents such as oxygen and nitrogen content and trace compounds such as the odorant; (2) city water quality varies widely; recovery of product water for process use avoids costly, complicated and site-specific water treatment systems, but water treatment is required to eliminate impurities and (3) the embedded protection functions for reliable operation of fuel cell power conditioners meet or exceed those required for connection to

  13. The Future of Pork Production in the World: Towards Sustainable, Welfare-Positive Systems.

    PubMed

    McGlone, John J

    2013-01-01

    Among land animals, more pork is eaten in the world than any other meat. The earth holds about one billion pigs who deliver over 100 mmt of pork to people for consumption. Systems of pork production changed from a forest-based to pasture-based to dirt lots and finally into specially-designed buildings. The world pork industry is variable and complex not just in production methods but in economics and cultural value. A systematic analysis of pork industry sustainability was performed. Sustainable production methods are considered at three levels using three examples in this paper: production system, penning system and for a production practice. A sustainability matrix was provided for each example. In a comparison of indoor vs. outdoor systems, the food safety/zoonoses concerns make current outdoor systems unsustainable. The choice of keeping pregnant sows in group pens or individual crates is complex in that the outcome of a sustainability assessment leads to the conclusion that group penning is more sustainable in the EU and certain USA states, but the individual crate is currently more sustainable in other USA states, Asia and Latin America. A comparison of conventional physical castration with immunological castration shows that the less-common immunological castration method is more sustainable (for a number of reasons). This paper provides a method to assess the sustainability of production systems and practices that take into account the best available science, human perception and culture, animal welfare, the environment, food safety, worker health and safety, and economics (including the cost of production and solving world hunger). This tool can be used in countries and regions where the table values of a sustainability matrix change based on local conditions. The sustainability matrix can be used to assess current systems and predict improved systems of the future. PMID:26487410

  14. The Future of Pork Production in the World: Towards Sustainable, Welfare-Positive Systems.

    PubMed

    McGlone, John J

    2013-05-15

    Among land animals, more pork is eaten in the world than any other meat. The earth holds about one billion pigs who deliver over 100 mmt of pork to people for consumption. Systems of pork production changed from a forest-based to pasture-based to dirt lots and finally into specially-designed buildings. The world pork industry is variable and complex not just in production methods but in economics and cultural value. A systematic analysis of pork industry sustainability was performed. Sustainable production methods are considered at three levels using three examples in this paper: production system, penning system and for a production practice. A sustainability matrix was provided for each example. In a comparison of indoor vs. outdoor systems, the food safety/zoonoses concerns make current outdoor systems unsustainable. The choice of keeping pregnant sows in group pens or individual crates is complex in that the outcome of a sustainability assessment leads to the conclusion that group penning is more sustainable in the EU and certain USA states, but the individual crate is currently more sustainable in other USA states, Asia and Latin America. A comparison of conventional physical castration with immunological castration shows that the less-common immunological castration method is more sustainable (for a number of reasons). This paper provides a method to assess the sustainability of production systems and practices that take into account the best available science, human perception and culture, animal welfare, the environment, food safety, worker health and safety, and economics (including the cost of production and solving world hunger). This tool can be used in countries and regions where the table values of a sustainability matrix change based on local conditions. The sustainability matrix can be used to assess current systems and predict improved systems of the future.

  15. Comprehensive national assessment of the sustainability of beef production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A national assessment is being conducted by the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, a contractor to the beef checkoff, to develop better scientific understanding of the sustainability of beef. This includes a life cycle assessment (LCA) of greenhouse gas emissions along with other environmental, ...

  16. High-Efficiency Food Production in a Renewable Energy Based Micro-Grid Power System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bubenheim, David; Meiners, Dennis

    2016-01-01

    Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA) systems can be used to produce high-quality, desirable food year round, and the fresh produce can positively contribute to the health and well being of residents in communities with difficult supply logistics. While CEA has many positive outcomes for a remote community, the associated high electric demands have prohibited widespread implementation in what is typically already a fully subscribed power generation and distribution system. Recent advances in CEA technologies as well as renewable power generation, storage, and micro-grid management are increasing system efficiency and expanding the possibilities for enhancing community supporting infrastructure without increasing demands for outside supplied fuels. We will present examples of how new lighting, nutrient delivery, and energy management and control systems can enable significant increases in food production efficiency while maintaining high yields in CEA. Examples from Alaskan communities where initial incorporation of renewable power generation, energy storage and grid management techniques have already reduced diesel fuel consumption for electric generation by more than 40% and expanded grid capacity will be presented. We will discuss how renewable power generation, efficient grid management to extract maximum community service per kW, and novel energy storage approaches can expand the food production, water supply, waste treatment, sanitation and other community support services without traditional increases of consumable fuels supplied from outside the community. These capabilities offer communities with a range of choices to enhance their communities. The examples represent a synergy of technology advancement efforts to develop sustainable community support systems for future space-based human habitats and practical implementation of infrastructure components to increase efficiency and enhance health and well being in remote communities today and tomorrow.

  17. Estimating Green Net National Product for Puerto Rico: An Economic Measure of Sustainability (Journal article)

    EPA Science Inventory

    This paper presents the data sources and methodology used to estimate Green Net National Product (GNNP), an economic metric of sustainability, for Puerto Rico. Using the change in GNNP as a one-sided test of weak sustainability (i.e., positive growth in GNNP is not enough to show...

  18. The sustainability of organic dairy production in the U.S.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Both organic and conventional dairy farming practices in the U.S. have unique challenges for maintaining sustainable production. Economic sustainability may be most important because milk will not be produced in our economy unless there is profit for the producer. The demand for organic milk has cre...

  19. An integrative modeling framework to evaluate the productivity and sustainability of biofuel crop production systems

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, X; Izaurralde, R. C.; Manowitz, D.; West, T. O.; Thomson, A. M.; Post, Wilfred M; Bandaru, Vara Prasad; Nichols, Jeff; Williams, J.

    2010-10-01

    The potential expansion of biofuel production raises food, energy, and environmental challenges that require careful assessment of the impact of biofuel production on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, soil erosion, nutrient loading, and water quality. In this study, we describe a spatially explicit integrative modeling framework (SEIMF) to understand and quantify the environmental impacts of different biomass cropping systems. This SEIMF consists of three major components: (1) a geographic information system (GIS)-based data analysis system to define spatial modeling units with resolution of 56 m to address spatial variability, (2) the biophysical and biogeochemical model Environmental Policy Integrated Climate (EPIC) applied in a spatially-explicit way to predict biomass yield, GHG emissions, and other environmental impacts of different biofuel crops production systems, and (3) an evolutionary multiobjective optimization algorithm for exploring the trade-offs between biofuel energy production and unintended ecosystem-service responses. Simple examples illustrate the major functions of the SEIMF when applied to a nine-county Regional Intensive Modeling Area (RIMA) in SW Michigan to (1) simulate biofuel crop production, (2) compare impacts of management practices and local ecosystem settings, and (3) optimize the spatial configuration of different biofuel production systems by balancing energy production and other ecosystem-service variables. Potential applications of the SEIMF to support life cycle analysis and provide information on biodiversity evaluation and marginal-land identification are also discussed. The SEIMF developed in this study is expected to provide a useful tool for scientists and decision makers to understand sustainability issues associated with the production of biofuels at local, regional, and national scales.

  20. An Integrative Modeling Framework to Evaluate the Productivity and Sustainability of Biofuel Crop Production Systems

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, Xuesong; Izaurralde, Roberto C.; Manowitz, David H.; West, T. O.; Post, W. M.; Thomson, Allison M.; Bandaru, V. P.; Nichols, J.; Williams, J.R.

    2010-09-08

    The potential expansion of biofuel production raises food, energy, and environmental challenges that require careful assessment of the impact of biofuel production on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, soil erosion, nutrient loading, and water quality. In this study, we describe a spatially-explicit integrative modeling framework (SEIMF) to understand and quantify the environmental impacts of different biomass cropping systems. This SEIMF consists of three major components: 1) a geographic information system (GIS)-based data analysis system to define spatial modeling units with resolution of 56 m to address spatial variability, 2) the biophysical and biogeochemical model EPIC (Environmental Policy Integrated Climate) applied in a spatially-explicit way to predict biomass yield, GHG emissions, and other environmental impacts of different biofuel crops production systems, and 3) an evolutionary multi-objective optimization algorithm for exploring the trade-offs between biofuel energy production and unintended ecosystem-service responses. Simple examples illustrate the major functions of the SEIMF when applied to a 9-county Regional Intensive Modeling Area (RIMA) in SW Michigan to 1) simulate biofuel crop production, 2) compare impacts of management practices and local ecosystem settings, and 3) optimize the spatial configuration of different biofuel production systems by balancing energy production and other ecosystem-service variables. Potential applications of the SEIMF to support life cycle analysis and provide information on biodiversity evaluation and marginal-land identification are also discussed. The SEIMF developed in this study is expected to provide a useful tool for scientists and decision makers to understand sustainability issues associated with the production of biofuels at local, regional, and national scales.

  1. Sustainable Harvest and marketing of rain forest products

    SciTech Connect

    Plotkin, M.J.; Famolare, L.M.

    1992-01-01

    The economics of nontimber rainforest products often make a strong case for forest protection and prevention of deforestation. This book contains 33 diverse papers falling into three catagories: tropical rainforests are underutilized sources of new plant products; increased use of tropical forest products should benefit human inhabitants of the rainforest; nontimber forest products many not be the panacea that some suggest.

  2. Singlet oxygen production in a microcathode sustained discharge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bauville, G.; Lacour, B.; Magne, L.; Puech, V.; Boeuf, J. P.; Munoz-Serrano, E.; Pitchford, L. C.

    2007-01-01

    The authors report experimental results showing that high yields of singlet oxygen O2(aΔg1) can be generated in a three-electrode microcathode sustained discharge (MCSD) configuration. This configuration consists of a microhollow cathode discharge (MHCD) acting as a plasma cathode to sustain a stable glow discharge between the MHCD and a third, planar electrode placed at a distance of 8mm. Experiments were performed in pure oxygen and in mixtures of oxygen with rare gases (He or Ar) at pressures up to 130Torr. O2(aΔg1) relative yields of 7.6% were measured 23cm downstream in the afterglow of the MCSD discharge.

  3. Product Lifecycle Management and the Quest for Sustainable Space Transportation Solutions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Caruso, Pamela W.

    2009-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation reviews NASA Marshall's effort to sustain space transportation solutions through product lines that include: 1) Propulsion and Transportation Systems; 2) Life Support Systems; and 3) and Earth and Space Science Spacecraft Systems, and Operations.

  4. Integration: valuing stakeholder input in setting priorities for socially sustainable egg production.

    PubMed

    Swanson, J C; Lee, Y; Thompson, P B; Bawden, R; Mench, J A

    2011-09-01

    Setting directions and goals for animal production systems requires the integration of information achieved through internal and external processes. The importance of stakeholder input in setting goals for sustainable animal production systems should not be overlooked by the agricultural animal industries. Stakeholders play an integral role in setting the course for many aspects of animal production, from influencing consumer preferences to setting public policy. The Socially Sustainable Egg Production Project (SSEP) involved the development of white papers on various aspects of egg production, followed by a stakeholder workshop to help frame the issues for the future of sustainable egg production. Representatives from the environmental, food safety, food retail, consumer, animal welfare, and the general farm and egg production sectors participated with members of the SSEP coordination team in a 1.5-d workshop to explore socially sustainable egg production. This paper reviews the published literature on values integration methodologies and the lessons learned from animal welfare assessment models. The integration method used for the SSEP stakeholder workshop and its outcome are then summarized. The method used for the SSEP stakeholder workshop can be used to obtain stakeholder input on sustainable production in other farm animal industries.

  5. Microhollow cathode sustained discharges: comparative studies in micro- and equivalent macro-cell geometries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Callegari, Th.; Aubert, X.; Rousseau, A.; Boeuf, J. P.; Pitchford, L. C.

    2010-12-01

    We present an experimental study of discharge initiation in a three-electrode configuration consisting of a microhollow cathode discharge (MHCD) and a third planar electrode, biased positively and placed some distance away. This work is based on the microcathode sustained (MCS) configuration where the MHCD acts as a plasma cathode and enables the generation of a stable, non-equilibrium plasma at high pressure in the volume between the MHCD and the third electrode. Our experiments were carried out in two different set-ups, one using a MHCD as a cathode and another in an "equivalent" macrocell geometry, easier to implement and operating at lower pressure in which the same phenomena are observed. Consistent with previous modeling results, we find that the plasma column in the volume between the MHCD and the third electrode is characterized by a low reduced electric field, with values similar to those expected for a positive column. The ignition voltage of the plasma column depends on the voltage difference between the MHCD and the third electrode, the MHCD current, and the gas pressure and gap spacing.

  6. Expanding lean thinking to the product and process design and development within the framework of sustainability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sorli, M.; Sopelana, A.; Salgado, M.; Pelaez, G.; Ares, E.

    2012-04-01

    Companies require tools to change towards a new way of developing and producing innovative products to be manufactured considering the economic, social and environmental impact along the product life cycle. Based on translating Lean principles in Product Development (PD) from the design stage and, along the entire product life cycle, it is aimed to address both sustainability and environmental issues. The drivers of sustainable culture within a lean PD have been identified and a baseline for future research on the development of appropriate tools and techniques has been provided. This research provide industry with a framework which balance environmental and sustainable factors with lean principles to be considered and incorporated from the beginning of product design and development covering the entire product lifecycle.

  7. Can the co-cultivation of rice and fish help sustain rice production?

    PubMed

    Hu, Liangliang; Zhang, Jian; Ren, Weizheng; Guo, Liang; Cheng, Yongxu; Li, Jiayao; Li, Kexin; Zhu, Zewen; Zhang, Jiaen; Luo, Shiming; Cheng, Lei; Tang, Jianjun; Chen, Xin

    2016-01-01

    Because rice feeds half of the world's population, a secure global food supply depends on sustainable rice production. Here we test whether the co-cultivation of rice and fish into one "rice-fish system" (RFS; fish refers to aquatic animals in this article) could help sustain rice production. We examined intensive and traditional RFSs that have been widely practiced in China. We found that rice yields did not decrease when fish yield was below a threshold value in each intensive RFS. Below the thresholds, moreover, fish yields in intensive RFSs can be substantially higher than those in traditional RFS without reducing rice yield. Relative to rice monoculture, the use of fertilizer-nitrogen and pesticides decreased, and the farmers' net income increased in RFSs. The results suggest that RFSs can help sustain rice production, and suggest that development of co-culture technologies (i.e. proper field configuration for fish and rice) is necessary to achieve the sustainability. PMID:27349875

  8. A microBio reactor for hydrogen production.

    SciTech Connect

    Volponi, Joanne V.; Walker, Andrew William

    2003-12-01

    The purpose of this work was to explore the potential of developing a microfluidic reactor capable of enzymatically converting glucose and other carbohydrates to hydrogen. This aggressive project was motivated by work in enzymatic hydrogen production done by Woodward et al. at OWL. The work reported here demonstrated that hydrogen could be produced from the enzymatic oxidation of glucose. Attempts at immobilizing the enzymes resulted in reduced hydrogen production rates, probably due to buffer compatibility issues. A novel in-line sensor was also developed to monitor hydrogen production in real time at levels below 1 ppm. Finally, a theoretical design for the microfluidic reactor was developed but never produced due to the low production rates of hydrogen from the immobilized enzymes. However, this work demonstrated the potential of mimicking biological systems to create energy on the microscale.

  9. Sustain

    SciTech Connect

    2013-08-20

    Current building energy simulation technology requires excessive labor, time and expertise to create building energy models, excessive computational time for accurate simulations and difficulties with the interpretation of the results. These deficiencies can be ameliorated using modern graphical user interfaces and algorithms which take advantage of modern computer architectures and display capabilities. To prove this hypothesis, we developed an experimental test bed for building energy simulation. This novel test bed environment offers an easy-to-use interactive graphical interface, provides access to innovative simulation modules that run at accelerated computational speeds, and presents new graphics visualization methods to interpret simulation results. Our system offers the promise of dramatic ease of use in comparison with currently available building energy simulation tools. Its modular structure makes it suitable for early stage building design, as a research platform for the investigation of new simulation methods, and as a tool for teaching concepts of sustainable design. Improvements in the accuracy and execution speed of many of the simulation modules are based on the modification of advanced computer graphics rendering algorithms. Significant performance improvements are demonstrated in several computationally expensive energy simulation modules. The incorporation of these modern graphical techniques should advance the state of the art in the domain of whole building energy analysis and building performance simulation, particularly at the conceptual design stage when decisions have the greatest impact. More importantly, these better simulation tools will enable the transition from prescriptive to performative energy codes, resulting in better, more efficient designs for our future built environment.

  10. Life Cycle Assessment Software for Product and Process Sustainability Analysis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vervaeke, Marina

    2012-01-01

    In recent years, life cycle assessment (LCA), a methodology for assessment of environmental impacts of products and services, has become increasingly important. This methodology is applied by decision makers in industry and policy, product developers, environmental managers, and other non-LCA specialists working on environmental issues in a wide…

  11. Sustain

    2013-08-20

    Current building energy simulation technology requires excessive labor, time and expertise to create building energy models, excessive computational time for accurate simulations and difficulties with the interpretation of the results. These deficiencies can be ameliorated using modern graphical user interfaces and algorithms which take advantage of modern computer architectures and display capabilities. To prove this hypothesis, we developed an experimental test bed for building energy simulation. This novel test bed environment offers an easy-to-use interactivemore » graphical interface, provides access to innovative simulation modules that run at accelerated computational speeds, and presents new graphics visualization methods to interpret simulation results. Our system offers the promise of dramatic ease of use in comparison with currently available building energy simulation tools. Its modular structure makes it suitable for early stage building design, as a research platform for the investigation of new simulation methods, and as a tool for teaching concepts of sustainable design. Improvements in the accuracy and execution speed of many of the simulation modules are based on the modification of advanced computer graphics rendering algorithms. Significant performance improvements are demonstrated in several computationally expensive energy simulation modules. The incorporation of these modern graphical techniques should advance the state of the art in the domain of whole building energy analysis and building performance simulation, particularly at the conceptual design stage when decisions have the greatest impact. More importantly, these better simulation tools will enable the transition from prescriptive to performative energy codes, resulting in better, more efficient designs for our future built environment.« less

  12. Integrated Metrics for Improving the Life Cycle Approach to Assessing Product System Sustainability

    EPA Science Inventory

    Life cycle approaches are critical for identifying and managing to reduce burdens in the sustainability of product systems. While these methods can indicate potential environmental impacts of a product, current Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) methods fail to integrate the multiple im...

  13. Biogeochemical research priorities for sustainable biofuel and bioenergy feedstock production in the Americas

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rapid expansion in biomass production for biofuels and bioenergy in the Americas is increasing demands on the ecosystem resources required to sustain soil and site productivity. We review the current state of knowledge and highlight gaps in research on biogeochemical processes and ecosystem sustaina...

  14. 77 FR 10939 - Driving Innovation and Creating Jobs in Rural America Through Biobased and Sustainable Product...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-02-24

    ... memorandum in the Federal Register. (Presidential Sig.) THE WHITE HOUSE, Washington, February 21, 2012 [FR... Creating Jobs in Rural America Through Biobased and Sustainable Product Procurement Memorandum for the... procurement of biobased products to promote rural economic development, create new jobs, and provide...

  15. The Role of Diverse Strategies in Sustainable Knowledge Production.

    PubMed

    Wu, Lingfei; Baggio, Jacopo A; Janssen, Marco A

    2016-01-01

    Online communities are becoming increasingly important as platforms for large-scale human cooperation. These communities allow users seeking and sharing professional skills to solve problems collaboratively. To investigate how users cooperate to complete a large number of knowledge-producing tasks, we analyze Stack Exchange, one of the largest question and answer systems in the world. We construct attention networks to model the growth of 110 communities in the Stack Exchange system and quantify individual answering strategies using the linking dynamics on attention networks. We identify two answering strategies. Strategy A aims at performing maintenance by doing simple tasks, whereas strategy B aims at investing time in doing challenging tasks. Both strategies are important: empirical evidence shows that strategy A decreases the median waiting time for answers and strategy B increases the acceptance rate of answers. In investigating the strategic persistence of users, we find that users tends to stick on the same strategy over time in a community, but switch from one strategy to the other across communities. This finding reveals the different sets of knowledge and skills between users. A balance between the population of users taking A and B strategies that approximates 2:1, is found to be optimal to the sustainable growth of communities. PMID:26934733

  16. The Role of Diverse Strategies in Sustainable Knowledge Production.

    PubMed

    Wu, Lingfei; Baggio, Jacopo A; Janssen, Marco A

    2016-01-01

    Online communities are becoming increasingly important as platforms for large-scale human cooperation. These communities allow users seeking and sharing professional skills to solve problems collaboratively. To investigate how users cooperate to complete a large number of knowledge-producing tasks, we analyze Stack Exchange, one of the largest question and answer systems in the world. We construct attention networks to model the growth of 110 communities in the Stack Exchange system and quantify individual answering strategies using the linking dynamics on attention networks. We identify two answering strategies. Strategy A aims at performing maintenance by doing simple tasks, whereas strategy B aims at investing time in doing challenging tasks. Both strategies are important: empirical evidence shows that strategy A decreases the median waiting time for answers and strategy B increases the acceptance rate of answers. In investigating the strategic persistence of users, we find that users tends to stick on the same strategy over time in a community, but switch from one strategy to the other across communities. This finding reveals the different sets of knowledge and skills between users. A balance between the population of users taking A and B strategies that approximates 2:1, is found to be optimal to the sustainable growth of communities.

  17. The Role of Diverse Strategies in Sustainable Knowledge Production

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Lingfei; Baggio, Jacopo A.; Janssen, Marco A.

    2016-01-01

    Online communities are becoming increasingly important as platforms for large-scale human cooperation. These communities allow users seeking and sharing professional skills to solve problems collaboratively. To investigate how users cooperate to complete a large number of knowledge-producing tasks, we analyze Stack Exchange, one of the largest question and answer systems in the world. We construct attention networks to model the growth of 110 communities in the Stack Exchange system and quantify individual answering strategies using the linking dynamics on attention networks. We identify two answering strategies. Strategy A aims at performing maintenance by doing simple tasks, whereas strategy B aims at investing time in doing challenging tasks. Both strategies are important: empirical evidence shows that strategy A decreases the median waiting time for answers and strategy B increases the acceptance rate of answers. In investigating the strategic persistence of users, we find that users tends to stick on the same strategy over time in a community, but switch from one strategy to the other across communities. This finding reveals the different sets of knowledge and skills between users. A balance between the population of users taking A and B strategies that approximates 2:1, is found to be optimal to the sustainable growth of communities. PMID:26934733

  18. A testpart for interdisciplinary analyses in micro production engineering

    SciTech Connect

    Möhring, H. -C.; Kersting, P.; Carmignato, S.; Yagüe-Fabra, J. A.; Maestro, M.; Jiménez, R.; Ferraris, E.; Tunc, L. T.; Bleicher, F.; Wits, W. W.; Walczak, K.; Hedlind, M.

    2015-04-26

    In 2011, a round robin test was initiated within the group of CIRP Research Affiliates. The aim was to establish a platform for linking interdisciplinary research in order to share the expertise and experiences of participants all over the world. This paper introduces a testpart which has been designed to allow an analysis of different manufacturing technologies, simulation methods, machinery and metrology as well as process and production planning aspects. Current investigations are presented focusing on the machining and additive processes to produce the geometry, simulation approaches, machine analysis, and a comparison of measuring technologies. Challenges and limitations regarding the manufacturing and evaluation of the testpart features by the applied methods are discussed.

  19. Sustainable bioenergy production from marginal lands in the US Midwest

    SciTech Connect

    Gelfand, Ilya; Sahajpal, Ritvik; Zhang, Xuesong; Izaurralde, Roberto C.; Gross, Katherine L.; Robertson, G. P.

    2013-01-24

    Long-term measurements of global warming impact coupled with spatially explicit modeling suggests that both climate benefits and the production potential of cellulosic crops grown on marginal lands of the US North Central region are substantial but will be insufficient to meet long-term biofuel needs.

  20. Sustainable Harvests Through Increased Utilization of Salmon By-Products

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The growing demand for fish meals and oils has produced a steady rise in the market price garnered by these commodities. However, the practice of discarding fish-processing wastes is still widespread. Alaska’s fishing industry generates over one million metric tons of fish by-products each year, muc...

  1. Developing sustainable management practices for organic rice production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Demand for organically produced rice has been increasing with up to 50,000 acres now produced in the USA. Although acreage of conventional rice production has decreased in Texas by 36% during the last 15 years, it is now home to some 15,000 acres of organic rice, which has brought new vitality to ot...

  2. Sustaining Motivation and Productivity during Significant Organizational Change.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pellak, Mary T.

    2001-01-01

    Discussion of organizational change and possible negative effects which can impact organizational performance focuses on ways a manager can identify problems with employee motivation and productivity and address them in a supportive manner. Topics include clear expectations, open communication, and recognizing employee efforts. (Author/LRW)

  3. Productivity ranges of sustainable biomass potentials from non-agricultural land

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schueler, Vivian; Fuss, Sabine; Steckel, Jan Christoph; Weddige, Ulf; Beringer, Tim

    2016-07-01

    Land is under pressure from a number of demands, including the need for increased supplies of bioenergy. While bioenergy is an important ingredient in many pathways compatible with reaching the 2 °C target, areas where cultivation of the biomass feedstock would be most productive appear to co-host other important ecosystems services. We categorize global geo-data on land availability into productivity deciles, and provide a geographically explicit assessment of potentials that are concurrent with EU sustainability criteria. The deciles unambiguously classify the global productivity range of potential land currently not in agricultural production for biomass cultivation. Results show that 53 exajoule (EJ) sustainable biomass potential are available from 167 million hectares (Mha) with a productivity above 10 tons of dry matter per hectare and year (tD Mha-1 a-1), while additional 33 EJ are available on 264 Mha with yields between 4 and 10 tD M ha-1 a-1: some regions lose less of their highly productive potentials to sustainability concerns than others and regional contributions to bioenergy potentials shift when less productive land is considered. Challenges to limit developments to the exploitation of sustainable potentials arise in Latin America, Africa and Developing Asia, while new opportunities emerge for Transition Economies and OECD countries to cultivate marginal land.

  4. Productivity ranges of sustainable biomass potentials from non-agricultural land

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schueler, Vivian; Fuss, Sabine; Steckel, Jan Christoph; Weddige, Ulf; Beringer, Tim

    2016-07-01

    Land is under pressure from a number of demands, including the need for increased supplies of bioenergy. While bioenergy is an important ingredient in many pathways compatible with reaching the 2 °C target, areas where cultivation of the biomass feedstock would be most productive appear to co-host other important ecosystems services. We categorize global geo-data on land availability into productivity deciles, and provide a geographically explicit assessment of potentials that are concurrent with EU sustainability criteria. The deciles unambiguously classify the global productivity range of potential land currently not in agricultural production for biomass cultivation. Results show that 53 exajoule (EJ) sustainable biomass potential are available from 167 million hectares (Mha) with a productivity above 10 tons of dry matter per hectare and year (tD Mha‑1 a‑1), while additional 33 EJ are available on 264 Mha with yields between 4 and 10 tD M ha‑1 a‑1: some regions lose less of their highly productive potentials to sustainability concerns than others and regional contributions to bioenergy potentials shift when less productive land is considered. Challenges to limit developments to the exploitation of sustainable potentials arise in Latin America, Africa and Developing Asia, while new opportunities emerge for Transition Economies and OECD countries to cultivate marginal land.

  5. Micro-algae come of age as a platform for recombinant protein production

    PubMed Central

    Specht, Elizabeth; Miyake-Stoner, Shigeki

    2010-01-01

    A complete set of genetic tools is still being developed for the micro-alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. Yet even with this incomplete set, this photosynthetic single-celled plant has demonstrated significant promise as a platform for recombinant protein expression. In recent years, techniques have been developed that allow for robust expression of genes from both the nuclear and plastid genome. With these advances, many research groups have examined the pliability of this and other micro-algae as biological machines capable of producing recombinant peptides and proteins. This review describes recent successes in recombinant protein production in Chlamydomonas, including production of complex mammalian therapeutic proteins and monoclonal antibodies at levels sufficient for production at economic parity with existing production platforms. These advances have also shed light on the details of algal protein production at the molecular level, and provide insight into the next steps for optimizing micro-algae as a useful platform for the production of therapeutic and industrially relevant recombinant proteins. PMID:20556634

  6. A testpart for interdisciplinary analyses in micro production engineering

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Möhring, H. -C.; Kersting, P.; Carmignato, S.; Yagüe-Fabra, J. A.; Maestro, M.; Jiménez, R.; Ferraris, E.; Tunc, L. T.; Bleicher, F.; Wits, W. W.; et al

    2015-04-26

    In 2011, a round robin test was initiated within the group of CIRP Research Affiliates. The aim was to establish a platform for linking interdisciplinary research in order to share the expertise and experiences of participants all over the world. This paper introduces a testpart which has been designed to allow an analysis of different manufacturing technologies, simulation methods, machinery and metrology as well as process and production planning aspects. Current investigations are presented focusing on the machining and additive processes to produce the geometry, simulation approaches, machine analysis, and a comparison of measuring technologies. Challenges and limitations regarding themore » manufacturing and evaluation of the testpart features by the applied methods are discussed.« less

  7. Product Lifecycle Management and the Quest for Sustainable Space Explorations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Caruso, Pamela W.; Dumbacher, Daniel L.

    2010-01-01

    Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) is an outcome of lean thinking to eliminate waste and increase productivity. PLM is inextricably tied to the systems engineering business philosophy, coupled with a methodology by which personnel, processes and practices, and information technology combine to form an architecture platform for product design, development, manufacturing, operations, and decommissioning. In this model, which is being implemented by the Engineering Directorate at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA's) Marshall Space Flight Center, total lifecycle costs are important variables for critical decision-making. With the ultimate goal to deliver quality products that meet or exceed requirements on time and within budget, PLM is a powerful concept to shape everything from engineering trade studies and testing goals, to integrated vehicle operations and retirement scenarios. This paper will demonstrate how the Engineering Directorate is implementing PLM as part of an overall strategy to deliver safe, reliable, and affordable space exploration solutions. It has been 30 years since the United States fielded the Space Shuttle. The next generation space transportation system requires a paradigm shift such that digital tools and knowledge management, which are central elements of PLM, are used consistently to maximum effect. The outcome is a better use of scarce resources, along with more focus on stakeholder and customer requirements, as a new portfolio of enabling tools becomes second nature to the workforce. This paper will use the design and manufacturing processes, which have transitioned to digital-based activities, to show how PLM supports the comprehensive systems engineering and integration function. It also will go through a launch countdown scenario where an anomaly is detected to show how the virtual vehicle created from paperless processes will help solve technical challenges and improve the likelihood of launching on schedule

  8. Fuel cell systems for a sustainable energy production

    SciTech Connect

    Kivisaari, T.

    1996-12-31

    When talking about fuel cell systems for stationary applications, two of the advantages are claimed to be a high inherent efficiency and environmentally favourable characteristics. It should, however, be obvious to everybody that in order to call an energy production route environmentally benign, it is not enough that just the energy production step itself has a low negative environmental impact, but that all steps involved (e.g. fuel pre-treatment, fuel processing etc.) should be subjected to the same constraints if the overall production process is to be considered environmentally friendly. In order to evaluate the technical possibilities of a biomass fuelled MCFC unit for stationary applications a system study of a 40 MWe biomass-fired MCFC system is currently carried out at The Royal Institute of Technology, as part of the international co-operation within the IEA Advanced Fuel Cell Programme Annex 1, Balance of Plant of MCFC Systems. In addition to the present work, other recent studies involving biomass and fuel cells can be found in literature.

  9. Biogeochemical Research Priorities for Sustainable Biofuel and Bioenergy Feedstock Production in the Americas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gollany, Hero T.; Titus, Brian D.; Scott, D. Andrew; Asbjornsen, Heidi; Resh, Sigrid C.; Chimner, Rodney A.; Kaczmarek, Donald J.; Leite, Luiz F. C.; Ferreira, Ana C. C.; Rod, Kenton A.; Hilbert, Jorge; Galdos, Marcelo V.; Cisz, Michelle E.

    2015-12-01

    Rapid expansion in biomass production for biofuels and bioenergy in the Americas is increasing demand on the ecosystem resources required to sustain soil and site productivity. We review the current state of knowledge and highlight gaps in research on biogeochemical processes and ecosystem sustainability related to biomass production. Biomass production systems incrementally remove greater quantities of organic matter, which in turn affects soil organic matter and associated carbon and nutrient storage (and hence long-term soil productivity) and off-site impacts. While these consequences have been extensively studied for some crops and sites, the ongoing and impending impacts of biomass removal require management strategies for ensuring that soil properties and functions are sustained for all combinations of crops, soils, sites, climates, and management systems, and that impacts of biomass management (including off-site impacts) are environmentally acceptable. In a changing global environment, knowledge of cumulative impacts will also become increasingly important. Long-term experiments are essential for key crops, soils, and management systems because short-term results do not necessarily reflect long-term impacts, although improved modeling capability may help to predict these impacts. Identification and validation of soil sustainability indicators for both site prescriptions and spatial applications would better inform commercial and policy decisions. In an increasingly inter-related but constrained global context, researchers should engage across inter-disciplinary, inter-agency, and international lines to better ensure the long-term soil productivity across a range of scales, from site to landscape.

  10. Biogeochemical Research Priorities for Sustainable Biofuel and Bioenergy Feedstock Production in the Americas.

    PubMed

    Gollany, Hero T; Titus, Brian D; Scott, D Andrew; Asbjornsen, Heidi; Resh, Sigrid C; Chimner, Rodney A; Kaczmarek, Donald J; Leite, Luiz F C; Ferreira, Ana C C; Rod, Kenton A; Hilbert, Jorge; Galdos, Marcelo V; Cisz, Michelle E

    2015-12-01

    Rapid expansion in biomass production for biofuels and bioenergy in the Americas is increasing demand on the ecosystem resources required to sustain soil and site productivity. We review the current state of knowledge and highlight gaps in research on biogeochemical processes and ecosystem sustainability related to biomass production. Biomass production systems incrementally remove greater quantities of organic matter, which in turn affects soil organic matter and associated carbon and nutrient storage (and hence long-term soil productivity) and off-site impacts. While these consequences have been extensively studied for some crops and sites, the ongoing and impending impacts of biomass removal require management strategies for ensuring that soil properties and functions are sustained for all combinations of crops, soils, sites, climates, and management systems, and that impacts of biomass management (including off-site impacts) are environmentally acceptable. In a changing global environment, knowledge of cumulative impacts will also become increasingly important. Long-term experiments are essential for key crops, soils, and management systems because short-term results do not necessarily reflect long-term impacts, although improved modeling capability may help to predict these impacts. Identification and validation of soil sustainability indicators for both site prescriptions and spatial applications would better inform commercial and policy decisions. In an increasingly inter-related but constrained global context, researchers should engage across inter-disciplinary, inter-agency, and international lines to better ensure the long-term soil productivity across a range of scales, from site to landscape.

  11. Biogeochemical Research Priorities for Sustainable Biofuel and Bioenergy Feedstock Production in the Americas.

    PubMed

    Gollany, Hero T; Titus, Brian D; Scott, D Andrew; Asbjornsen, Heidi; Resh, Sigrid C; Chimner, Rodney A; Kaczmarek, Donald J; Leite, Luiz F C; Ferreira, Ana C C; Rod, Kenton A; Hilbert, Jorge; Galdos, Marcelo V; Cisz, Michelle E

    2015-12-01

    Rapid expansion in biomass production for biofuels and bioenergy in the Americas is increasing demand on the ecosystem resources required to sustain soil and site productivity. We review the current state of knowledge and highlight gaps in research on biogeochemical processes and ecosystem sustainability related to biomass production. Biomass production systems incrementally remove greater quantities of organic matter, which in turn affects soil organic matter and associated carbon and nutrient storage (and hence long-term soil productivity) and off-site impacts. While these consequences have been extensively studied for some crops and sites, the ongoing and impending impacts of biomass removal require management strategies for ensuring that soil properties and functions are sustained for all combinations of crops, soils, sites, climates, and management systems, and that impacts of biomass management (including off-site impacts) are environmentally acceptable. In a changing global environment, knowledge of cumulative impacts will also become increasingly important. Long-term experiments are essential for key crops, soils, and management systems because short-term results do not necessarily reflect long-term impacts, although improved modeling capability may help to predict these impacts. Identification and validation of soil sustainability indicators for both site prescriptions and spatial applications would better inform commercial and policy decisions. In an increasingly inter-related but constrained global context, researchers should engage across inter-disciplinary, inter-agency, and international lines to better ensure the long-term soil productivity across a range of scales, from site to landscape. PMID:26006220

  12. [Sustainable production of bulk chemicals by application of "white biotechnology"].

    PubMed

    Patel, M K; Dornburg, V; Hermann, B G; Shen, Li; van Overbeek, Leo

    2008-12-01

    Practically all organic chemicals and plastics are nowadays produced from crude oil and natural gas. However, it is possible to produce a wide range of bulk chemicals from renewable resources by application of biotechnology. This paper focuses on White Biotechnology, which makes use of bacteria (or yeasts) or enzymes for the conversion of the fermentable sugar to the target product. It is shown that White Biotechnology offers substantial savings of non-renewable energy use and greenhouse gas emissions for nearly all of the products studied. Under favorable boundary conditions up to two thirds (67%) of the current non-renewable energy use for the production of the selected chemicals can be saved by 2050 if substantial technological progress is made and if the use of lignocellulosic feedstocks is successfully developed. The analysis for Europe (E.U. 25 countries) shows that land requirements related to White Biotechnology chemicals are not likely to become a critical issue in the next few decades, especially considering the large unused and underutilized resources in Eastern Europe. Substantial macroeconomic savings can be achieved under favourable boundary conditions. In principle, natural bacteria and enzymes can be used for White Biotechnology but, according to many experts in the fields, Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) will be necessary in order to achieve the high yields, concentrations and productivities that are required to reach economic viability. Safe containment and inactivation of GMOs after release is very important because not all possible implications caused by the interaction of recombinant genes with other populations can be foreseen. If adequate precautionary measures are taken, the risks related to the use of genetically modified organisms in White Biotechnology are manageable. We conclude that the core requirements to be fulfilled in order to make clear steps towards a bio-based chemical industry are substantial technological progress in the

  13. [Sustainable production of bulk chemicals by application of "white biotechnology"].

    PubMed

    Patel, M K; Dornburg, V; Hermann, B G; Shen, Li; van Overbeek, Leo

    2008-12-01

    Practically all organic chemicals and plastics are nowadays produced from crude oil and natural gas. However, it is possible to produce a wide range of bulk chemicals from renewable resources by application of biotechnology. This paper focuses on White Biotechnology, which makes use of bacteria (or yeasts) or enzymes for the conversion of the fermentable sugar to the target product. It is shown that White Biotechnology offers substantial savings of non-renewable energy use and greenhouse gas emissions for nearly all of the products studied. Under favorable boundary conditions up to two thirds (67%) of the current non-renewable energy use for the production of the selected chemicals can be saved by 2050 if substantial technological progress is made and if the use of lignocellulosic feedstocks is successfully developed. The analysis for Europe (E.U. 25 countries) shows that land requirements related to White Biotechnology chemicals are not likely to become a critical issue in the next few decades, especially considering the large unused and underutilized resources in Eastern Europe. Substantial macroeconomic savings can be achieved under favourable boundary conditions. In principle, natural bacteria and enzymes can be used for White Biotechnology but, according to many experts in the fields, Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) will be necessary in order to achieve the high yields, concentrations and productivities that are required to reach economic viability. Safe containment and inactivation of GMOs after release is very important because not all possible implications caused by the interaction of recombinant genes with other populations can be foreseen. If adequate precautionary measures are taken, the risks related to the use of genetically modified organisms in White Biotechnology are manageable. We conclude that the core requirements to be fulfilled in order to make clear steps towards a bio-based chemical industry are substantial technological progress in the

  14. Novel transparent electrodes allow sustainable production of electronic devices

    SciTech Connect

    Constant, Kristen

    2010-12-27

    A novel technique for fabricating inexpensive, transparent electrodes from common metals has been developed by engineers and scientists at Iowa State University and Ames Laboratory. They exhibit very high transparency and are very good electrical conductors. This is a combination of properties that is difficult to achieve with common materials. The most frequently used transparent electrode in today's high-technology devices (such as LCD screens) is indium tin oxide (ITO). While ITO performs well in these applications, the supply of indium is very limited. In addition, it is rapidly decreasing as consumer demand for flat-panel electronics is skyrocketing. According to a 2004 US Geological Survey report, as little as 14 years exploitation of known indium reserves remains. In addition to increasing prices, the dwindling supply of indium suggests its use is not sustainable for future generations of electronics enthusiasts. Solar cells represent another application where transparent electrodes are used. To make solar-energy collection economically feasible, all parts of solar photovoltaics must be made more efficient and cost-effective. Our novel transparent electrodes have the potential to do both. In addition, there is much interest in developing more efficient, cost-effective, and environmentally friendly lighting. Incandescent light bulbs are very inefficient, because most of their energy consumption is wasted as heat. Fluorescent lighting is much more efficient but still uses mercury, an environmental toxin. An attractive alternative is offered by LEDs, which have very high efficiencies and long lifetimes, and do not contain mercury. If made bright enough, LED use for general lighting could provide a viable alternative. We have fabricated electrodes from more commonly available materials, using a technique that is cost effective and environmentally friendly. Most of today's electronic devices are made in specialized facilities equipped with low

  15. Tailoring lignin biosynthesis for efficient and sustainable biofuel production.

    PubMed

    Liu, Chang-Jun; Cai, Yuanheng; Zhang, Xuebin; Gou, Mingyue; Yang, Huijun

    2014-12-01

    Increased global interest in a bio-based economy has reinvigorated the research on the cell wall structure and composition in plants. In particular, the study of plant lignification has become a central focus, with respect to its intractability and negative impact on the utilization of the cell wall biomass for producing biofuels and bio-based chemicals. Striking progress has been achieved in the last few years both on our fundamental understanding of lignin biosynthesis, deposition and assembly, and on the interplay of lignin synthesis with the plant growth and development. With the knowledge gleaned from basic studies, researchers are now able to invent and develop elegant biotechnological strategies to sophisticatedly manipulate the quantity and structure of lignin and thus to create economically viable bioenergy feedstocks. These concerted efforts open an avenue for the commercial production of cost-competitive biofuel to meet our energy needs.

  16. Denitrification 'Woodchip' Bioreactors for Productive and Sustainable Agricultural Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Christianson, L. E.; Summerfelt, S.; Sharrer, K.; Lepine, C.; Helmers, M. J.

    2014-12-01

    Growing alarm about negative cascading effects of reactive nitrogen in the environment has led to multifaceted efforts to address elevated nitrate-nitrogen levels in water bodies worldwide. The best way to mitigate N-related impacts, such as hypoxic zones and human health concerns, is to convert nitrate to stable, non-reactive dinitrogen gas through the natural process of denitrification. This means denitrification technologies need to be one of our major strategies for tackling the grand challenge of managing human-induced changes to our global nitrogen cycle. While denitrification technologies have historically been focused on wastewater treatment, there is great interest in new lower-tech options for treating effluent and drainage water from one of our largest reactive nitrogen emitters -- agriculture. Denitrification 'woodchip' bioreactors are able to enhance this natural N-conversion via addition of a solid carbon source (e.g., woodchips) and through designs that facilitate development of anoxic conditions required for denitrification. Wood-based denitrification technologies such as woodchip bioreactors and 'sawdust' walls for groundwater have been shown to be effective at reducing nitrate loads in agricultural settings around the world. Designing these systems to be low-maintenance and to avoid removing land from agricultural production has been a primary focus of this "farmer-friendly" technology. This presentation provides a background on woodchip bioreactors including design considerations, N-removal performance, and current research worldwide. Woodchip bioreactors for the agricultural sector are an accessible new option to address society's interest in improving water quality while simultaneously allowing highly productive agricultural systems to continue to provide food in the face of increasing demand, changing global diets, and fluctuating weather.

  17. Micro-scale energy valorization of grape marcs in winery production plants.

    PubMed

    Fabbri, Andrea; Bonifazi, Giuseppe; Serranti, Silvia

    2015-02-01

    The Biochemical Methane Potential (BMP) of winery organic waste, with reference to two Italian red and white grapes (i.e. Nero Buono and Greco) by-products was investigated. The study was carried out to verify the possibility to reduce the production impact in a green-waste-management-chain-perspective. The possibility to efficiently utilize wine-related-by-products for energy production at a micro-scale (i.e. small-medium scale winery production plant) was also verified. Results showed as a good correlation can be established between the percentage of COD removal and the biogas production, as the winery can produce, from its waste methanization, about 7800 kW h year(-1) electrical and 8900 kW h year(-1) thermal. A critical evaluation was performed about the possibility to utilize the proposed approach to realize an optimal biomass waste management and an energetic valorization in a local-energy-production-perspective. PMID:25529134

  18. Micro-scale Plasma Arc Gasification for Waste Treatment and Energy Production Project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Caraccio, Anne

    2015-01-01

    As NASA continues to develop technology for spaceflight beyond low earth orbit, we must develop the right systems for sustaining human life on a long duration or planetary mission. Plasma arc gasification (PAG) is an energy efficient mechanism of waste management for power generation and synthetic gas(syngas) production.

  19. Sustainability evaluation of Sicily's lemon and orange production: an energy, economic and environmental analysis.

    PubMed

    Pergola, M; D'Amico, M; Celano, G; Palese, A M; Scuderi, A; Di Vita, G; Pappalardo, G; Inglese, P

    2013-10-15

    The island of Sicily has a long standing tradition in citrus growing. We evaluated the sustainability of orange and lemon orchards, under organic and conventional farming, using an energy, environmental and economic analysis of the whole production cycle by using a life cycle assessment approach. These orchard systems differ only in terms of a few of the inputs used and the duration of the various agricultural operations. The quantity of energy consumption in the production cycle was calculated by multiplying the quantity of inputs used by the energy conversion factors drawn from the literature. The production costs were calculated considering all internal costs, including equipment, materials, wages, and costs of working capital. The performance of the two systems (organic and conventional), was compared over a period of fifty years. The results, based on unit surface area (ha) production, prove the stronger sustainability of the organic over the conventional system, both in terms of energy consumption and environmental impact, especially for lemons. The sustainability of organic systems is mainly due to the use of environmentally friendly crop inputs (fertilizers, not use of synthetic products, etc.). In terms of production costs, the conventional management systems were more expensive, and both systems were heavily influenced by wages. In terms of kg of final product, the organic production system showed better environmental and energy performances. PMID:23850762

  20. Sustainability evaluation of Sicily's lemon and orange production: an energy, economic and environmental analysis.

    PubMed

    Pergola, M; D'Amico, M; Celano, G; Palese, A M; Scuderi, A; Di Vita, G; Pappalardo, G; Inglese, P

    2013-10-15

    The island of Sicily has a long standing tradition in citrus growing. We evaluated the sustainability of orange and lemon orchards, under organic and conventional farming, using an energy, environmental and economic analysis of the whole production cycle by using a life cycle assessment approach. These orchard systems differ only in terms of a few of the inputs used and the duration of the various agricultural operations. The quantity of energy consumption in the production cycle was calculated by multiplying the quantity of inputs used by the energy conversion factors drawn from the literature. The production costs were calculated considering all internal costs, including equipment, materials, wages, and costs of working capital. The performance of the two systems (organic and conventional), was compared over a period of fifty years. The results, based on unit surface area (ha) production, prove the stronger sustainability of the organic over the conventional system, both in terms of energy consumption and environmental impact, especially for lemons. The sustainability of organic systems is mainly due to the use of environmentally friendly crop inputs (fertilizers, not use of synthetic products, etc.). In terms of production costs, the conventional management systems were more expensive, and both systems were heavily influenced by wages. In terms of kg of final product, the organic production system showed better environmental and energy performances.

  1. Paths Forward: Current International and US Initiatives to Support More Sustainable Options for Uranium Production

    SciTech Connect

    Rehmann, M.; Rood, C.; Keefe, M.

    2008-07-01

    With the nuclear renaissance, the uranium mining industry has undergone a dramatic renaissance, as well. This has been evidenced in the past 2 years with forums such as those organized by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and in the United States (US) the National Mining Association/Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NMA/NRC) workshops drawing record attendance by established and junior uranium mining firms. In addition, IAEA meetings, as well as meetings of the NMA, industry, and agencies have begun to focus, not on only on site closure - but on the growing industry and plans for permitting new uranium recovery facilities. Finally, the International Forum on Sustainable Options for Uranium Production (IFSOUP) has emerged to carry forward many recent cooperative dialogs and concepts developed in sustainability initiatives, bringing together industry, agencies and NGOs - with the view to developing more sustainable, socially-acceptable uranium recovery practices. In this context, this paper will present current international and US initiatives which are intended to support more sustainable options for uranium production. First, we will describe a new initiative for international cooperative dialogues, to build industry, agency and NGO cooperation for enhancing global sustainability in uranium production operations, and avoid the legacy issues found in past operations: the inaugural meeting of the International Forum on Sustainable Options for Uranium Production, or IFSOUP. IFSOUP will carry forward discussions of recent and present initiatives including the Global Mining Initiative; the Mining, Minerals, and Sustainable Development Initiative (MMSD); the International Council on Mining and Metals; and the sustainable development initiatives of the US National Mining Association. Consistent with the process of ensuring development of a sustainable uranium recovery industry, while factoring in stakeholder concerns, an initiative to promote strong regulation in

  2. Development Of Sustainable Biobased Products And Bioenergy In Cooperation With The Midwest Consortium For Sustainable Biobased Products And Energy

    SciTech Connect

    Michael Ladisch; Randy Woodson

    2009-03-18

    Collaborative efforts of Midwest Consortium have been put forth to add value to distiller's grains by further processing them into fermentable sugars, ethanol, and a protein rich co-product consistent with a pathway to a biorenewables industry (Schell et al, 2008). These studies were recently published in the enclosed special edition (Volume 99, Issue 12) of Bioresource Technology journal. Part of them have demonstrated the utilization of distillers grains as additional feedstock for increased ethanol production in the current dry grind process (Kim et al., 2008a, b; Dien et al.,2008, Ladisch et al., 2008a, b). Results showed that both liquid hot water (LHW) pretreatment and ammonia fiber expansion (AFEX) were effective for enhancing digestibility of distiller's grains. Enzymatic digestion of distiller's grains resulted in more than 90% glucose yield under standard assay conditions, although the yield tends to drop as the concentration of dry solids increases. Simulated process mass balances estimated that hydrolysis and fermentation of distillers grains can increase the ethanol yield by 14% in the current dry milling process (Kim et al., 2008c). Resulting co-products from the modified process are richer in protein and oil contents than conventional distiller's grains, as determined both experimentally and computationally. Other research topics in the special edition include water solubilization of DDGS by transesterification reaction with phosphite esters (Oshel el al., 2008) to improve reactivity of the DDGS to enzymes, hydrolysis of soluble oligomers derived from DDGS using functionalized mesoporous solid catalysts (Bootsma et al., 2008), and ABE (acetone, butanol, ethanol) production from DDGS by solventogenic Clostridia (Ezeji and Blaschek, 2008). Economic analysis of a modified dry milling process, where the fiber and residual starch is extracted and fermented to produce more ethanol from the distillers grains while producing highly concentrated protein co-product

  3. Biodelignification of lignocellulose substrates: An intrinsic and sustainable pretreatment strategy for clean energy production.

    PubMed

    Chandel, Anuj K; Gonçalves, Bruna C M; Strap, Janice L; da Silva, Silvio S

    2015-01-01

    Lignocellulosic biomass (LB) is a promising sugar feedstock for biofuels and other high-value chemical commodities. The recalcitrance of LB, however, impedes carbohydrate accessibility and its conversion into commercially significant products. Two important factors for the overall economization of biofuel production is LB pretreatment to liberate fermentable sugars followed by conversion into ethanol. Sustainable biofuel production must overcome issues such as minimizing water and energy usage, reducing chemical usage and process intensification. Amongst available pretreatment methods, microorganism-mediated pretreatments are the safest, green, and sustainable. Native biodelignifying agents such as Phanerochaete chrysosporium, Pycnoporous cinnabarinus, Ceriporiopsis subvermispora and Cyathus stercoreus can remove lignin, making the remaining substrates amenable for saccharification. The development of a robust, integrated bioprocessing (IBP) approach for economic ethanol production would incorporate all essential steps including pretreatment, cellulase production, enzyme hydrolysis and fermentation of the released sugars into ethanol. IBP represents an inexpensive, environmentally friendly, low energy and low capital approach for second-generation ethanol production. This paper reviews the advancements in microbial-assisted pretreatment for the delignification of lignocellulosic substrates, system metabolic engineering for biorefineries and highlights the possibilities of process integration for sustainable and economic ethanol production. PMID:24156399

  4. Biodelignification of lignocellulose substrates: An intrinsic and sustainable pretreatment strategy for clean energy production.

    PubMed

    Chandel, Anuj K; Gonçalves, Bruna C M; Strap, Janice L; da Silva, Silvio S

    2015-01-01

    Lignocellulosic biomass (LB) is a promising sugar feedstock for biofuels and other high-value chemical commodities. The recalcitrance of LB, however, impedes carbohydrate accessibility and its conversion into commercially significant products. Two important factors for the overall economization of biofuel production is LB pretreatment to liberate fermentable sugars followed by conversion into ethanol. Sustainable biofuel production must overcome issues such as minimizing water and energy usage, reducing chemical usage and process intensification. Amongst available pretreatment methods, microorganism-mediated pretreatments are the safest, green, and sustainable. Native biodelignifying agents such as Phanerochaete chrysosporium, Pycnoporous cinnabarinus, Ceriporiopsis subvermispora and Cyathus stercoreus can remove lignin, making the remaining substrates amenable for saccharification. The development of a robust, integrated bioprocessing (IBP) approach for economic ethanol production would incorporate all essential steps including pretreatment, cellulase production, enzyme hydrolysis and fermentation of the released sugars into ethanol. IBP represents an inexpensive, environmentally friendly, low energy and low capital approach for second-generation ethanol production. This paper reviews the advancements in microbial-assisted pretreatment for the delignification of lignocellulosic substrates, system metabolic engineering for biorefineries and highlights the possibilities of process integration for sustainable and economic ethanol production.

  5. Grain production versus resource and environmental costs: towards increasing sustainability of nutrient use in China.

    PubMed

    Jiao, Xiaoqiang; Lyu, Yang; Wu, Xiaobin; Li, Haigang; Cheng, Lingyun; Zhang, Chaochun; Yuan, Lixing; Jiang, Rongfeng; Jiang, Baiwen; Rengel, Zed; Zhang, Fusuo; Davies, William J; Shen, Jianbo

    2016-09-01

    Over the past five decades, Chinese grain production has increased 4-fold, from 110 Mt in 1961 to 557 Mt in 2014, with less than 9% of the world's arable land feeding 22% of the world's population, indicating a substantial contribution to global food security. However, compared with developed economies, such as the USA and the European Union, more than half of the increased crop production in China can be attributed to a rapid increase in the consumption of chemicals, particularly fertilizers. Excessive fertilization has caused low nutrient use efficiency and high environmental costs in grain production. We analysed the key requirements underpinning increased sustainability of crop production in China, as follows: (i) enhance nutrient use efficiency and reduce nutrient losses by fertilizing roots not soil to maximize root/rhizosphere efficiency with innovative root zone nutrient management; (ii) improve crop productivity and resource use efficiency by matching the best agronomic management practices with crop improvement; and (iii) promote technology transfer of the root zone nutrient management to achieve the target of high yields and high efficiency with low environmental risks on a broad scale. Coordinating grain production and environmental protection by increasing the sustainability of nutrient use will be a key step in achieving sustainable crop production in Chinese agriculture. PMID:27489235

  6. Micro-scale energy valorization of grape marcs in winery production plants

    SciTech Connect

    Fabbri, Andrea; Bonifazi, Giuseppe; Serranti, Silvia

    2015-02-15

    Highlights: • BioMethane Potential of grape marcs was investigated. • Grape marcs were characterized to realize a micro-scale energy recovery. • Comparative BMP batch-tests utilizing lab-scale reactors were performed. • Biogas valorization by grape marcs anaerobic digestion at small scale is evaluated. - Abstract: The BiochemicalMethanePotential (BMP) of winery organic waste, with reference to two Italian red and white grapes (i.e. Nero Buono and Greco) by-products was investigated. The study was carried out to verify the possibility to reduce the production impact in a green-waste-management-chain-perspective. The possibility to efficiently utilize wine-related-by-products for energy production at a micro-scale (i.e. small-medium scale winery production plant) was also verified. Results showed as a good correlation can be established between the percentage of COD removal and the biogas production, as the winery can produce, from its waste methanization, about 7800 kW h year{sup −1} electrical and 8900 kW h year{sup −1} thermal. A critical evaluation was performed about the possibility to utilize the proposed approach to realize an optimal biomass waste management and an energetic valorization in a local-energy-production-perspective.

  7. DO BIO-BASED PRODUCTS MOVE US TOWARD SUSTAINABILITY? A LOOK AT THREE USEPA CASE STUDIES

    EPA Science Inventory


    Do Bio-Based Products Move Us Toward Sustainability? A Look at Three Case Studies within the US EPA
    Mary Am Curran
    US Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Research & Development, Cincinnati, OH 45268; curran.maryann@epagov
    Abstract The movement to buy "...

  8. Sustainable semiarid dryland production in relation to tillage effects on Hydrology: 1983-2013

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Semiarid dryland crop yields with no-till, NT, residue management are often greater than stubble-mulch tillage, SM, as a result of improved soil conditions or water conservation, but knowledge of long-term tillage effects on the comprehensive field hydrology and sustained crop production is needed. ...

  9. Influence of School Climate on Students' Achievement and Teachers' Productivity for Sustainable Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Adeogun, A. A.; Olisaemeka, Blessing U.

    2011-01-01

    The study covers ten secondary schools in Lagos State of Nigeria. The purpose is to ascertain the relationship between school climate and student achievements and teachers' productivity for sustainable development. A total sample of 150 respondents was taken. Ten principals, seven teachers and seven students were randomly picked per school. This…

  10. Butanol production from food waste: a novel process for producing sustainable energy and reducing environmental pollution

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Efficient utilization of food waste for fuel and chemical production can positively influence both the energy and environmental sustainability. In these studies we investigated use of food waste to produce butanol by Clostridium beijerinckii P260. In control fermentation, 40.5 g/L of glucose (initia...

  11. Evaluating Consumer Product Life Cycle Sustainability with Integrated Metrics: A Paper Towel Case Study

    EPA Science Inventory

    Integrated sustainability metrics provide an enriched set of information to inform decision-making. However, such approaches are rarely used to assess product supply chains. In this work, four integrated metrics—presented in terms of land, resources, value added, and stability—ar...

  12. [Macroscopic analysis on production and marketing of medicinal material resources for sustainable development].

    PubMed

    Xiao, Peigen; Zhao, Runhuai; Long, Xingehao; Guo, Baolin

    2009-09-01

    In this paper, the production and marketing of medicinal materials of plant origin are sorted and analyzed. The total annual yield and total output value are presented. The resources sustainable development is discussed by three aspects, i.e., the yield Top 60 items, rare and endangered species and several wild drugs should be deeply concerned. Relevant measures and implementation are recommended respectively.

  13. Workshop on the Design of Sustainable Product Systems and Supply Chains; Final Report,

    EPA Science Inventory

    ABOUT THE WORKSHOP The Workshop on the Design of Sustainable Product Systems and Supply Chains was held September 12–13, 2011 at the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) offices in Arlington, Virginia. The Workshop was co-sponsored by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (...

  14. Moving toward energy security and sustainability in 2050 by reconfiguring biofuel production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    To achieve energy security and sustainability by 2050 requires reconfiguring biofuel production both by building on current infrastructure and existing technology and also by making substantial improvements and changes in the feedstocks used, the process technologies applied, and the fuels produced....

  15. Can the co-cultivation of rice and fish help sustain rice production?

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Liangliang; Zhang, Jian; Ren, Weizheng; Guo, Liang; Cheng, Yongxu; Li, Jiayao; Li, Kexin; Zhu, Zewen; Zhang, Jiaen; Luo, Shiming; Cheng, Lei; Tang, Jianjun; Chen, Xin

    2016-01-01

    Because rice feeds half of the world’s population, a secure global food supply depends on sustainable rice production. Here we test whether the co-cultivation of rice and fish into one “rice-fish system” (RFS; fish refers to aquatic animals in this article) could help sustain rice production. We examined intensive and traditional RFSs that have been widely practiced in China. We found that rice yields did not decrease when fish yield was below a threshold value in each intensive RFS. Below the thresholds, moreover, fish yields in intensive RFSs can be substantially higher than those in traditional RFS without reducing rice yield. Relative to rice monoculture, the use of fertilizer-nitrogen and pesticides decreased, and the farmers’ net income increased in RFSs. The results suggest that RFSs can help sustain rice production, and suggest that development of co-culture technologies (i.e. proper field configuration for fish and rice) is necessary to achieve the sustainability. PMID:27349875

  16. Production of collagen micro- and nanofibers for potential drug-carrier systems.

    PubMed

    Aras, Onur; Kazanci, Murat

    2015-12-01

    Two different nano- and micro-collagen fiber production methods are introduced and discussed. First one is the electrospinning method, that is very common technique to produce nanofibers from different polymeric solutions and recently collagen solutions are employed to produce nanofibers for different biomedical applications. This technique is extremely versatile method to produce nanofibers in a relatively short time, easy to control the fiber diameter and orientation with small pore sizes and a high surface area. The second method is self-assembly of collagen micro-fibers by co-extrusion method. The collagen fibers are obtained without any cross-linker, by using mainly ionic interactions. We demonstrated that self-assembled collagen fibers have well preserved their native structure (0.90 PP-II fraction), when compared with electrospun collagen fibers (0.38 PP-II fraction). However, it was only possible to produce collagen fibers with nanodimensions by using electrospinning method.

  17. Estimating Green Net National Product for Puerto Rico: An Economic Measure of Sustainability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Shanshan; Heberling, Matthew T.

    2016-04-01

    This paper presents the data sources and methodology used to estimate Green Net National Product (GNNP), an economic metric of sustainability, for Puerto Rico. Using the change in GNNP as a one-sided test of weak sustainability (i.e., positive growth in GNNP is not enough to show the economy is sustainable), we measure the movement away from sustainability by examining the change in GNNP from 1993 to 2009. In order to calculate GNNP, we require both economic and natural capital data, but limited data for Puerto Rico require a number of simplifying assumptions. Based on the environmental challenges faced by Puerto Rico, we include damages from air emissions and solid waste, the storm protection value of mangroves and the value of extracting crushed stone as components in the depreciation of natural capital. Our estimate of GNNP also includes the value of time, which captures the effects of technological progress. The results show that GNNP had an increasing trend over the 17 years studied with two periods of negative growth (2004-2006 and 2007-2008). Our additional analysis suggests that the negative growth in 2004-2006 was possibly due to a temporary economic downturn. However, the negative growth in 2007-2008 was likely from the decline in the value of time, suggesting the island of Puerto Rico was moving away from sustainability during this time.

  18. The usability of a product can be an ally of sustainability.

    PubMed

    Anjos, Thaiana P; Matias, Márcio; Gontijo, Leila A

    2012-01-01

    Few steps like turning off the tap while brushing your teeth, turn off the lights when leaving a room, recycle waste or using recycling bags are considered sustainable attitudes. Sustainable development is one that meets the needs of the present generation without compromising the future generations and it doesn't deplete resources for the future. Consume with conscious is a sustainable habit and usability of products contributes to this. The goal of this paper is to prove that the usability of software contributes positivity or negativity for sustainability. By calculating the amount of electrical power dissipated by an electronic device, you can discover the amount of energy lost by it, and consequently, to relate this quantity with the amount charged by the concessionaire for each kWh of energy used. It was concluded that a software with low usability cause users to lose a lot of time interacting with it and thus spend more energy and money that goes against the concept of sustainability. PMID:22317029

  19. Estimating Green Net National Product for Puerto Rico: An Economic Measure of Sustainability.

    PubMed

    Wu, Shanshan; Heberling, Matthew T

    2016-04-01

    This paper presents the data sources and methodology used to estimate Green Net National Product (GNNP), an economic metric of sustainability, for Puerto Rico. Using the change in GNNP as a one-sided test of weak sustainability (i.e., positive growth in GNNP is not enough to show the economy is sustainable), we measure the movement away from sustainability by examining the change in GNNP from 1993 to 2009. In order to calculate GNNP, we require both economic and natural capital data, but limited data for Puerto Rico require a number of simplifying assumptions. Based on the environmental challenges faced by Puerto Rico, we include damages from air emissions and solid waste, the storm protection value of mangroves and the value of extracting crushed stone as components in the depreciation of natural capital. Our estimate of GNNP also includes the value of time, which captures the effects of technological progress. The results show that GNNP had an increasing trend over the 17 years studied with two periods of negative growth (2004-2006 and 2007-2008). Our additional analysis suggests that the negative growth in 2004-2006 was possibly due to a temporary economic downturn. However, the negative growth in 2007-2008 was likely from the decline in the value of time, suggesting the island of Puerto Rico was moving away from sustainability during this time. PMID:26721472

  20. Estimating Green Net National Product for Puerto Rico: An Economic Measure of Sustainability.

    PubMed

    Wu, Shanshan; Heberling, Matthew T

    2016-04-01

    This paper presents the data sources and methodology used to estimate Green Net National Product (GNNP), an economic metric of sustainability, for Puerto Rico. Using the change in GNNP as a one-sided test of weak sustainability (i.e., positive growth in GNNP is not enough to show the economy is sustainable), we measure the movement away from sustainability by examining the change in GNNP from 1993 to 2009. In order to calculate GNNP, we require both economic and natural capital data, but limited data for Puerto Rico require a number of simplifying assumptions. Based on the environmental challenges faced by Puerto Rico, we include damages from air emissions and solid waste, the storm protection value of mangroves and the value of extracting crushed stone as components in the depreciation of natural capital. Our estimate of GNNP also includes the value of time, which captures the effects of technological progress. The results show that GNNP had an increasing trend over the 17 years studied with two periods of negative growth (2004-2006 and 2007-2008). Our additional analysis suggests that the negative growth in 2004-2006 was possibly due to a temporary economic downturn. However, the negative growth in 2007-2008 was likely from the decline in the value of time, suggesting the island of Puerto Rico was moving away from sustainability during this time.

  1. Silicification-induced cell aggregation for the sustainable production of H2 under aerobic conditions.

    PubMed

    Xiong, Wei; Zhao, Xiaohong; Zhu, Genxing; Shao, Changyu; Li, Yaling; Ma, Weimin; Xu, Xurong; Tang, Ruikang

    2015-10-01

    Photobiological hydrogen production is of great importance because of its promise for generating clean renewable energy. In nature, green algae cannot produce hydrogen as a result of the extreme sensitivity of hydrogenase to oxygen. However, we find that silicification-induced green algae aggregates can achieve sustainable photobiological hydrogen production even under natural aerobic conditions. The core-shell structure of the green algae aggregates creates a balance between photosynthetic electron generation and hydrogenase activity, thus allowing the production of hydrogen. This finding provides a viable pathway for the solar-driven splitting of water into hydrogen and oxygen to develop green energy alternatives by using rationally designed cell-material complexes.

  2. Sustainability evaluation of pasteurized milk production with a life cycle assessment approach: An Iranian case study.

    PubMed

    Rafiee, Shahin; Khoshnevisan, Benyamin; Mohammadi, Issa; Aghbashlo, Mortaza; Mousazadeh, Hossein; Clark, Sean

    2016-08-15

    Agro-food systems play a significant role in the economies of all nations due to energy use and the resulting environmental consequences. The sustainability of these systems is determined by a multitude of interacting economic, social and environmental factors. Dairy production presents a relevant example of the sustainability trade-offs that occur within such systems. On the one hand, dairy production constitutes an important part of the human diet, but it is also responsible for significant emissions of potent greenhouse gases and other pollutants. In this study, the environmental aspects of pasteurized milk production in Iran were investigated using a life-cycle approach. Three sub-systems, namely feed production, dairy farm and dairy factory, were taken into account to determine how and where Iranian pasteurized milk production might be made more environmentally friendly and energy efficient. The results clearly demonstrate that the feed production stage was the hot spot in pasteurized milk production in terms of energy consumption, environmental burdens and economic costs. The largest share of the total production costs belonged to animal feeds (43%), which were part of the feed production stage. The largest consumers of energy in the production of raw milk were alfalfa (30.3%), concentrate (24%), straw (17.8%) and maize (10.9%) for cows, followed by diesel fuel (6.6%) and electricity (5.6%). The global warming potential for the production of 1000kg of raw milk at the dairy-farm gate was estimated at 457kg CO2,eq. Thus, more than 69% of the total impact at the milk-processing gate resulted from the previous two sub-systems (feed production and dairy farm), with the feed-production stage accounting for the largest fractions of the environmental burdens. PMID:27110976

  3. Sustainability evaluation of pasteurized milk production with a life cycle assessment approach: An Iranian case study.

    PubMed

    Rafiee, Shahin; Khoshnevisan, Benyamin; Mohammadi, Issa; Aghbashlo, Mortaza; Mousazadeh, Hossein; Clark, Sean

    2016-08-15

    Agro-food systems play a significant role in the economies of all nations due to energy use and the resulting environmental consequences. The sustainability of these systems is determined by a multitude of interacting economic, social and environmental factors. Dairy production presents a relevant example of the sustainability trade-offs that occur within such systems. On the one hand, dairy production constitutes an important part of the human diet, but it is also responsible for significant emissions of potent greenhouse gases and other pollutants. In this study, the environmental aspects of pasteurized milk production in Iran were investigated using a life-cycle approach. Three sub-systems, namely feed production, dairy farm and dairy factory, were taken into account to determine how and where Iranian pasteurized milk production might be made more environmentally friendly and energy efficient. The results clearly demonstrate that the feed production stage was the hot spot in pasteurized milk production in terms of energy consumption, environmental burdens and economic costs. The largest share of the total production costs belonged to animal feeds (43%), which were part of the feed production stage. The largest consumers of energy in the production of raw milk were alfalfa (30.3%), concentrate (24%), straw (17.8%) and maize (10.9%) for cows, followed by diesel fuel (6.6%) and electricity (5.6%). The global warming potential for the production of 1000kg of raw milk at the dairy-farm gate was estimated at 457kg CO2,eq. Thus, more than 69% of the total impact at the milk-processing gate resulted from the previous two sub-systems (feed production and dairy farm), with the feed-production stage accounting for the largest fractions of the environmental burdens.

  4. Catalytic oxidation of biorefinery lignin to value-added chemicals to support sustainable biofuel production.

    PubMed

    Ma, Ruoshui; Xu, Yan; Zhang, Xiao

    2015-01-01

    Transforming plant biomass to biofuel is one of the few solutions that can truly sustain mankind's long-term needs for liquid transportation fuel with minimized environmental impact. However, despite decades of effort, commercial development of biomass-to-biofuel conversion processes is still not an economically viable proposition. Identifying value-added co-products along with the production of biofuel provides a key solution to overcoming this economic barrier. Lignin is the second most abundant component next to cellulose in almost all plant biomass; the emerging biomass refinery industry will inevitably generate an enormous amount of lignin. Development of selective biorefinery lignin-to-bioproducts conversion processes will play a pivotal role in significantly improving the economic feasibility and sustainability of biofuel production from renewable biomass. The urgency and importance of this endeavor has been increasingly recognized in the last few years. This paper reviews state-of-the-art oxidative lignin depolymerization chemistries employed in the papermaking process and oxidative catalysts that can be applied to biorefinery lignin to produce platform chemicals including phenolic compounds, dicarboxylic acids, and quinones in high selectivity and yield. The potential synergies of integrating new catalysts with commercial delignification chemistries are discussed. We hope the information will build on the existing body of knowledge to provide new insights towards developing practical and commercially viable lignin conversion technologies, enabling sustainable biofuel production from lignocellulosic biomass to be competitive with fossil fuel.

  5. Sustainable, efficient livestock production with high biodiversity and good welfare for animals.

    PubMed

    Broom, D M; Galindo, F A; Murgueitio, E

    2013-11-22

    What is the future for livestock agriculture in the world? Consumers have concerns about sustainability but many widely used livestock production methods do not satisfy consumers' requirements for a sustainable system. However, production can be sustainable, occurring in environments that: supply the needs of the animals resulting in good welfare, allow coexistence with a wide diversity of organisms native to the area, minimize carbon footprint and provide a fair lifestyle for the people working there. Conservation need not just involve tiny islands of natural vegetation in a barren world of agriculture, as there can be great increases in biodiversity in farmed areas. Herbivores, especially ruminants that consume materials inedible by humans, are important for human food in the future. However, their diet should not be just ground-level plants. Silvopastoral systems, pastures with shrubs and trees as well as herbage, are described which are normally more productive than pasture alone. When compared with widely used livestock production systems, silvopastoral systems can provide efficient feed conversion, higher biodiversity, enhanced connectivity between habitat patches and better animal welfare, so they can replace existing systems in many parts of the world and should be further developed.

  6. Catalytic oxidation of biorefinery lignin to value-added chemicals to support sustainable biofuel production.

    PubMed

    Ma, Ruoshui; Xu, Yan; Zhang, Xiao

    2015-01-01

    Transforming plant biomass to biofuel is one of the few solutions that can truly sustain mankind's long-term needs for liquid transportation fuel with minimized environmental impact. However, despite decades of effort, commercial development of biomass-to-biofuel conversion processes is still not an economically viable proposition. Identifying value-added co-products along with the production of biofuel provides a key solution to overcoming this economic barrier. Lignin is the second most abundant component next to cellulose in almost all plant biomass; the emerging biomass refinery industry will inevitably generate an enormous amount of lignin. Development of selective biorefinery lignin-to-bioproducts conversion processes will play a pivotal role in significantly improving the economic feasibility and sustainability of biofuel production from renewable biomass. The urgency and importance of this endeavor has been increasingly recognized in the last few years. This paper reviews state-of-the-art oxidative lignin depolymerization chemistries employed in the papermaking process and oxidative catalysts that can be applied to biorefinery lignin to produce platform chemicals including phenolic compounds, dicarboxylic acids, and quinones in high selectivity and yield. The potential synergies of integrating new catalysts with commercial delignification chemistries are discussed. We hope the information will build on the existing body of knowledge to provide new insights towards developing practical and commercially viable lignin conversion technologies, enabling sustainable biofuel production from lignocellulosic biomass to be competitive with fossil fuel. PMID:25272962

  7. Sustainable, efficient livestock production with high biodiversity and good welfare for animals

    PubMed Central

    Broom, D. M.; Galindo, F. A.; Murgueitio, E.

    2013-01-01

    What is the future for livestock agriculture in the world? Consumers have concerns about sustainability but many widely used livestock production methods do not satisfy consumers' requirements for a sustainable system. However, production can be sustainable, occurring in environments that: supply the needs of the animals resulting in good welfare, allow coexistence with a wide diversity of organisms native to the area, minimize carbon footprint and provide a fair lifestyle for the people working there. Conservation need not just involve tiny islands of natural vegetation in a barren world of agriculture, as there can be great increases in biodiversity in farmed areas. Herbivores, especially ruminants that consume materials inedible by humans, are important for human food in the future. However, their diet should not be just ground-level plants. Silvopastoral systems, pastures with shrubs and trees as well as herbage, are described which are normally more productive than pasture alone. When compared with widely used livestock production systems, silvopastoral systems can provide efficient feed conversion, higher biodiversity, enhanced connectivity between habitat patches and better animal welfare, so they can replace existing systems in many parts of the world and should be further developed. PMID:24068362

  8. Sustainable, efficient livestock production with high biodiversity and good welfare for animals.

    PubMed

    Broom, D M; Galindo, F A; Murgueitio, E

    2013-11-22

    What is the future for livestock agriculture in the world? Consumers have concerns about sustainability but many widely used livestock production methods do not satisfy consumers' requirements for a sustainable system. However, production can be sustainable, occurring in environments that: supply the needs of the animals resulting in good welfare, allow coexistence with a wide diversity of organisms native to the area, minimize carbon footprint and provide a fair lifestyle for the people working there. Conservation need not just involve tiny islands of natural vegetation in a barren world of agriculture, as there can be great increases in biodiversity in farmed areas. Herbivores, especially ruminants that consume materials inedible by humans, are important for human food in the future. However, their diet should not be just ground-level plants. Silvopastoral systems, pastures with shrubs and trees as well as herbage, are described which are normally more productive than pasture alone. When compared with widely used livestock production systems, silvopastoral systems can provide efficient feed conversion, higher biodiversity, enhanced connectivity between habitat patches and better animal welfare, so they can replace existing systems in many parts of the world and should be further developed. PMID:24068362

  9. “Omics” of Maize Stress Response for Sustainable Food Production: Opportunities and Challenges

    PubMed Central

    Gong, Fangping; Yang, Le; Tai, Fuju; Hu, Xiuli

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Maize originated in the highlands of Mexico approximately 8700 years ago and is one of the most commonly grown cereal crops worldwide, followed by wheat and rice. Abiotic stresses (primarily drought, salinity, and high and low temperatures), together with biotic stresses (primarily fungi, viruses, and pests), negatively affect maize growth, development, and eventually production. To understand the response of maize to abiotic and biotic stresses and its mechanism of stress tolerance, high-throughput omics approaches have been used in maize stress studies. Integrated omics approaches are crucial for dissecting the temporal and spatial system-level changes that occur in maize under various stresses. In this comprehensive analysis, we review the primary types of stresses that threaten sustainable maize production; underscore the recent advances in maize stress omics, especially proteomics; and discuss the opportunities, challenges, and future directions of maize stress omics, with a view to sustainable food production. The knowledge gained from studying maize stress omics is instrumental for improving maize to cope with various stresses and to meet the food demands of the exponentially growing global population. Omics systems science offers actionable potential solutions for sustainable food production, and we present maize as a notable case study. PMID:25401749

  10. "Omics" of maize stress response for sustainable food production: opportunities and challenges.

    PubMed

    Gong, Fangping; Yang, Le; Tai, Fuju; Hu, Xiuli; Wang, Wei

    2014-12-01

    Maize originated in the highlands of Mexico approximately 8700 years ago and is one of the most commonly grown cereal crops worldwide, followed by wheat and rice. Abiotic stresses (primarily drought, salinity, and high and low temperatures), together with biotic stresses (primarily fungi, viruses, and pests), negatively affect maize growth, development, and eventually production. To understand the response of maize to abiotic and biotic stresses and its mechanism of stress tolerance, high-throughput omics approaches have been used in maize stress studies. Integrated omics approaches are crucial for dissecting the temporal and spatial system-level changes that occur in maize under various stresses. In this comprehensive analysis, we review the primary types of stresses that threaten sustainable maize production; underscore the recent advances in maize stress omics, especially proteomics; and discuss the opportunities, challenges, and future directions of maize stress omics, with a view to sustainable food production. The knowledge gained from studying maize stress omics is instrumental for improving maize to cope with various stresses and to meet the food demands of the exponentially growing global population. Omics systems science offers actionable potential solutions for sustainable food production, and we present maize as a notable case study.

  11. Micro-concentration Lipopolysaccharide as a Novel Stimulator of Megakaryocytopoiesis that Synergizes with IL-6 for Platelet Production

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Di; Xie, Jun; Wang, Xuejun; Zou, Bingcheng; Yu, Yin; Jing, Tao; Zhang, Songmei; Zhang, Qing

    2015-01-01

    Lipopolysaccharide (LPS) induces platelet activation and enhances platelet sensitivity to aggregation, which might alter platelet counts. We found that serial doses of micro-concentration LPS significantly increased the platelet count in mice treated with kanamycin, along with increased expression of IL-6 compared with IL-3 and TPO in megakaryocytes obtained from the mouse bone morrow following LPS administration. Furthermore, LPS at lower levels ranging plus IL-6 effectively stimulated CFU-MK formation and increased CD41 expression and megakaryocyte polyploidization. Meanwhile, there was a sustained rise in the percentage of reticulated platelets in the whole blood in response to low-dosage LPS combined with IL-6. In vivo experiments also demonstrated that the administration of LPS combined with IL-6 substantially enhanced the number of circulating platelets in normal and thrombocytopenic mice. Notably, the optimal LPS concentration in combination with IL-6 might be a novel stimulator of TLR4 and IL-6R expression in Dami cell lines, which initially occurs through TLR4-IL-6R crosstalk and then involves the activation of NF-κB and phosphorylation of p38 MAPK. These data suggest a new paradigm for the regulation of megakaryocytopoiesis and platelet production via a synergistic effect of LPS and IL-6, which has the potential to be used for the design of new therapies. PMID:26330186

  12. Transgenic Hybrid Poplar for Sustainable and Scalable Production of the Commodity/Specialty Chemical, 2-Phenylethanol

    PubMed Central

    Costa, Michael A.; Marques, Joaquim V.; Dalisay, Doralyn S.; Herman, Barrington; Bedgar, Diana L.; Davin, Laurence B.; Lewis, Norman G.

    2013-01-01

    Fast growing hybrid poplar offers the means for sustainable production of specialty and commodity chemicals, in addition to rapid biomass production for lignocellulosic deconstruction. Herein we describe transformation of fast-growing transgenic hybrid poplar lines to produce 2-phenylethanol, this being an important fragrance, flavor, aroma, and commodity chemical. It is also readily converted into styrene or ethyl benzene, the latter being an important commodity aviation fuel component. Introducing this biochemical pathway into hybrid poplars marks the beginnings of developing a platform for a sustainable chemical delivery system to afford this and other valuable specialty/commodity chemicals at the scale and cost needed. These modified plant lines mainly sequester 2-phenylethanol via carbohydrate and other covalently linked derivatives, thereby providing an additional advantage of effective storage until needed. The future potential of this technology is discussed. MALDI metabolite tissue imaging also established localization of these metabolites in the leaf vasculature. PMID:24386157

  13. Transgenic hybrid poplar for sustainable and scalable production of the commodity/specialty chemical, 2-phenylethanol.

    PubMed

    Costa, Michael A; Marques, Joaquim V; Dalisay, Doralyn S; Herman, Barrington; Bedgar, Diana L; Davin, Laurence B; Lewis, Norman G

    2013-01-01

    Fast growing hybrid poplar offers the means for sustainable production of specialty and commodity chemicals, in addition to rapid biomass production for lignocellulosic deconstruction. Herein we describe transformation of fast-growing transgenic hybrid poplar lines to produce 2-phenylethanol, this being an important fragrance, flavor, aroma, and commodity chemical. It is also readily converted into styrene or ethyl benzene, the latter being an important commodity aviation fuel component. Introducing this biochemical pathway into hybrid poplars marks the beginnings of developing a platform for a sustainable chemical delivery system to afford this and other valuable specialty/commodity chemicals at the scale and cost needed. These modified plant lines mainly sequester 2-phenylethanol via carbohydrate and other covalently linked derivatives, thereby providing an additional advantage of effective storage until needed. The future potential of this technology is discussed. MALDI metabolite tissue imaging also established localization of these metabolites in the leaf vasculature. PMID:24386157

  14. Sustained H2 Production Driven by Photosynthetic Water Splitting in a Unicellular Cyanobacterium

    PubMed Central

    Melnicki, Matthew R.; Pinchuk, Grigoriy E.; Hill, Eric A.; Kucek, Leo A.; Fredrickson, Jim K.; Konopka, Allan; Beliaev, Alexander S.

    2012-01-01

    ABSTRACT The relationship between dinitrogenase-driven H2 production and oxygenic photosynthesis was investigated in a unicellular cyanobacterium, Cyanothece sp. ATCC 51142, using a novel custom-built photobioreactor equipped with advanced process control. Continuously illuminated nitrogen-deprived cells evolved H2 at rates up to 400 µmol ⋅ mg Chl−1 ⋅ h−1 in parallel with uninterrupted photosynthetic O2 production. Notably, sustained coproduction of H2 and O2 occurred over 100 h in the presence of CO2, with both gases displaying inverse oscillations which eventually dampened toward stable rates of 125 and 90 µmol ⋅ mg Chl−1 ⋅ h−1, respectively. Oscillations were not observed when CO2 was omitted, and instead H2 and O2 evolution rates were positively correlated. The sustainability of the process was further supported by stable chlorophyll content, maintenance of baseline protein and carbohydrate levels, and an enhanced capacity for linear electron transport as measured by chlorophyll fluorescence throughout the experiment. In situ light saturation analyses of H2 production displayed a strong dose dependence and lack of O2 inhibition. Inactivation of photosystem II had substantial long-term effects but did not affect short-term H2 production, indicating that the process is also supported by photosystem I activity and oxidation of endogenous glycogen. However, mass balance calculations suggest that carbohydrate consumption in the light may, at best, account for no more than 50% of the reductant required for the corresponding H2 production over that period. Collectively, our results demonstrate that uninterrupted H2 production in unicellular cyanobacteria can be fueled by water photolysis without the detrimental effects of O2 and have important implications for sustainable production of biofuels. PMID:22872781

  15. Sustained H2 Production Driven by Photosynthetic Water Splitting in a Unicellular Cyanobacterium

    SciTech Connect

    Melnicki, Matthew R.; Pinchuk, Grigoriy E.; Hill, Eric A.; Kucek, Leo A.; Fredrickson, Jim K.; Konopka, Allan; Beliaev, Alex S.

    2012-08-07

    Continuously illuminated nitrogen-deprived Cyanothece sp. ATCC 51142 evolved H2 via dinitrogenase at rates up to 400 μmol•mg Chl-1•h-1 in parallel with photosynthetic O2 production. Notably, sustained co-production of H2 and O2 occurred over 100 h in the presence of CO2, with both gases displaying inverse oscillations which eventually dampened to stable rates. Oscillations were not observed when CO2 was omitted, while H2 and O2 evolution rates were positively correlated. In situ light saturation analyses of H2 production displayed dose-dependence and lack of O2 inhibition. Inactivation of photosystem II had substantial long-term effects but did not affect the short-term H2 production indicating that the process is also supported by photosystem I activity and oxidation of endogenous glycogen. Collectively, our results demonstrate that uninterrupted H2 production in unicellular diazotrophic cyanobacteria can be fueled by water photolysis without the detrimental effects of O2 and have important implications for sustainable production of biofuels.

  16. Concept for Sustained Plant Production on ISS Using VEGGIE Capillary Mat Rooting System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stutte, Gary W.; Newsham, Gerard; Morrow, Robert M.; Wheeler, Raymond M.

    2011-01-01

    Plant growth in microgravity presents unique challenges associated with maintaining appropriate conditions for seed germination, seedling establishment, maturation and harvest. They include maintaining appropriate soil moisture content, nutrient balance, atmospheric mixing and containment. Sustained production imposes additional challenges of harvesting, replanting, and safety. The VEGGIE is a deployable (collapsible) plant growth chamber developed as part of a NASA SBIR Phase II by Orbitec, Madison, WI. The intent of VEGGIE is to provide a low-resource system to produce fresh vegetables for the crew on long duration missions. The VEGGIE uses and LED array for lighting, an expandable bellows for containment, and a capillary matting system for nutrient and water delivery. The project evaluated a number of approaches to achieve sustained production, and repeated plantings, using the capillary rooting system. A number of different root media, seed containment, and nutrient delivery systems were evaluated and effects on seed germination and growth were evaluated. A number of issues limiting sustained production, such as accumulation of nutrients, uniform water, elevated vapor pressure deficit, and media containment were identified. A concept using pre-planted rooting packs shown to effectively address a number of those issues and is a promising approach for future development as a planting system for microgravity conditions.

  17. Development of a regionally sensitive water-productivity indicator to identify sustainable practices for sugarcane growers.

    PubMed

    Brauman, Kate A; Viart, Nicolas

    2016-10-01

    Standards that credibly and effectively certify sustainable commodity production are important to both producers and consumers. Agriculture is the dominant user of water worldwide, so water sustainability in agriculture is an area of particular interest. In conjunction with Bonsucro, a sustainability standard setting body for the sugarcane sector, an indicator was developed to ensure that water consumed in sugarcane cultivation is used productively (i.e., that producers achieve high "crop per drop"). To be easily measurable, sugarcane water productivity was adapted so that yield could be compared within a climate zone in which water demand is assumed to be uniform. The indicator identifies efficient performers, defined as those exceeding median historical yield in each climate zone, with rainfed and irrigated systems evaluated separately. Both the expert-driven and stakeholder-driven aspects of standard development are discussed. We address the advantages and the limitations of this new indicator, its potential application to other crops, and the possibility of improvement to include further criteria. Integr Environ Assess Manag 2016;12:811-820. © 2015 SETAC.

  18. Towards sustainable parasite control practices in livestock production with emphasis in Latin America.

    PubMed

    Henrioud, A Nari

    2011-08-01

    Endo and ectoparasites of domestic ruminants directly or indirectly contribute to reduce sustainability affecting food security in subsistence or small scale farming systems, food safety (food borne diseases and pesticide residues), environment (pesticides, pollution and ecotoxicity) and farmer's equity (limited or uneven access to relevant technical information/training). This is especially true for some regions of Latin America where there still are huge areas of natural grazing land for cattle, sheep and goats. Sustainable parasite control is not an absolute concept given the different regions and productive systems of the world and therefore, could have different levels of adoption and impact on farmers. This article develops a conceptual framework to better understand where each region or country is situated in terms of attaining a reasonable increase in animal production while preserving sustainability. Within this context the capacity to prioritize the target parasite species for control according to local epidemiology and production systems, the early diagnosis and monitoring of parasite resistance as well as the availability of well trained field professionals acquire a major role, creating an enabling environment for present and future decision support system approaches. Until new and different means of controlling parasites become available; the challenge is to utilize Good Animal Husbandry Practices and Integrated Parasite Management (IPM) principles in a pragmatic way allowing the rational use of pesticides.

  19. Bioprocess intensification of antibiotic production by Streptomyces coelicolor A3(2) in micro-porous culture.

    PubMed

    Ndlovu, T M; Ward, A C; Glassey, J; Eskildsen, J; Akay, G

    2015-04-01

    A novel functionalized micro-porous matrix was developed with well-controlled physicochemical proprieties such as pore size and surface chemistry. The matrix was used as a solid support in the growth of "Streptomyces coelicolor" A3(2) to enhance the production of antibiotics. The results shown support a higher production of prodigiosin and actinorhodin with overall production increase of 2-5 and 6-17, respectively, compared to conventional submerged liquid culture, offering a potential improvement in volumetric productivity. Scanning Electron Microscopy was used to evaluate pore size as well as bacterial adhesion, penetration, proliferation and migration within the micro-porous matrix.

  20. Sustainable biomass products development and evaluation, Hamakua project. Final draft report

    SciTech Connect

    1998-05-01

    The PICHTR Sustainable Biomass Energy Program was developed to evaluate the potential to cultivate crops for energy production as an alternative use of lands made available by the closing of large sugar plantations. In particular, the closing of the Hamakua Sugar Company on the island of Hawaii brought a great deal of attention to the future of agriculture in this region and in the state. Many options were proposed. Several promising alternatives had been proposed for cane lands. These included dedicated feedstock supply systems (DFSS) for electrical energy production, cultivation of sugarcane to produce ethanol and related by-products, and the production of feed and crops to support animal agriculture. Implementation of some of the options might require preservation of large tracts of land and maintenance of the sugar mills and sugar infrastructure. An analysis of the technical, financial, and other issues necessary to reach conclusions regarding the optimal use of these lands was required. At the request of the Office of State Planning and Senator Akaka`s office, the Pacific International Center for High Technology Research (PICHTR) established and coordinated a working group composed of state, county, federal, and private sector representatives to identify sustainable energy options for the use of idle sugar lands on the island of Hawaii. The Sustainable Biomass Energy Program`s Hamakua Project was established to complete a comprehensive evaluation of the most viable alternatives and assess the options to grow crops as a source of raw materials for the production of transportation fuel and/or electricity on the island of Hawaii. The motivation for evaluating biomass to energy conversion embraced the considerations that Hawaii`s energy security would be improved by diversifying the fuels used for transportation and reducing dependency on imported fossil fuels. The use of waste products as feedstocks could divert wastes from landfills.

  1. Emergent Patterns of Forest Biomass Production from Across and within a Micro-Network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pederson, N.; Martin Benito, D.; Bishop, D. A.; Dawson, A.; Dietze, M.; Druckenbrod, D.; Dye, A.; Gonzalez, A. C.; Hessl, A. E.; Martin Fernandez, J.; McLachlan, J. S.; Paciorek, C. J.; Poulter, B.; Williams, J. W.

    2014-12-01

    Many factors drive short- and long-term trends in forest biomass production. Replication at multiple scales, from within individual trees up to continental scales, is necessary to determine factors of growth and at what scale they are most important. Here we report on patterns of biomass production from within and across a micro-network of three forests in the northeastern US. Each forest has different histories and species composition, but each is within a similar climatological setting, which gives insight on important factors of short- and long-term patterns of forest production. One emergent pattern is that two forests are showing a large uptick in production over the last decade. Coincident to this uptick, late-season biomass production is showing a significant increase, even among 150-200+ year old trees. The third forest experienced a severe ice storm in the early-Aughts that paused a three-decade trend of increasing production. In the least diverse forest, the most dominant species drives most of the annual to decadal trend in production. In the most diverse forest, no one species appears to be driving landscape-level production, yet the emergent pattern of production reflects not only drought and pluvial events, but the impact of invasive species and the ice storm. Variation in annual biomass production for most species is strongly related to annual variations in soil moisture. Interestingly at the species level, coherency of growth among yellow birch is lower in the oldest forest in which is it is common versus the youngest forest. Differences in coherency suggest different drivers operating at different scales. Growth of red maple is also driven by moisture, but competition appears to be driving a long-term decline of individuals below the canopy. The decline begins soon after a severe defoliation event. In this same forest, however, significant wetting and warming over the last two decades appears to have reduced some of the climatic constraints on red

  2. Sustainable Utilization of Traditional Chinese Medicine Resources: Systematic Evaluation on Different Production Modes

    PubMed Central

    Li, Xiwen; Chen, Yuning; Yang, Qing; Wang, Yitao

    2015-01-01

    The usage amount of medicinal plant rapidly increased along with the development of traditional Chinese medicine industry. The higher market demand and the shortage of wild herbal resources enforce us to carry out large-scale introduction and cultivation. Herbal cultivation can ease current contradiction between medicinal resources supply and demand while they bring new problems such as pesticide residues and plant disease and pests. Researchers have recently placed high hopes on the application of natural fostering, a new method incorporated herbal production and diversity protecting practically, which can solve the problems brought by artificial cultivation. However no modes can solve all problems existing in current herbal production. This study evaluated different production modes including cultivation, natural fostering, and wild collection to guide the traditional Chinese medicine production for sustainable utilization of herbal resources. PMID:26074987

  3. Self-sustainable production of hydrogen, chemicals, and energy from renewable alcohols by electrocatalysis.

    PubMed

    Bambagioni, Valentina; Bevilacqua, Manuela; Bianchini, Claudio; Filippi, Jonathan; Lavacchi, Alessandro; Marchionni, Andrea; Vizza, Francesco; Shen, Pei Kang

    2010-07-19

    The selective and simultaneous production of hydrogen and chemicals from renewable alcohols, such as ethanol, glycerol, and ethylene glycol, can be accomplished by means of electrolyzers in which the anode electrocatalyst is appropriately designed to promote the partial and selective oxidation of the alcohol. In the electrolyzers described herein, the production of 1 kg of hydrogen from aqueous ethanol occurs with one-third the amount of energy required by a traditional H(2)/O(2) electrolyzer, by virtue of the much lower oxidation potential of ethanol to acetate vs. water to oxygen in alkaline media (E(0)=0.10 V vs. 1.23 V). The self-sustainability of H(2) production is ensured by the simultaneous production of 25 kg of potassium acetate for every kg of H(2), if the promoting co-electrolyte is KOH.

  4. Production and supply of high-quality food protein for human consumption: sustainability, challenges, and innovations.

    PubMed

    Wu, Guoyao; Fanzo, Jessica; Miller, Dennis D; Pingali, Prabhu; Post, Mark; Steiner, Jean L; Thalacker-Mercer, Anna E

    2014-08-01

    The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations estimates that 843 million people worldwide are hungry and a greater number suffer from nutrient deficiencies. Approximately one billion people have inadequate protein intake. The challenge of preventing hunger and malnutrition will become even greater as the global population grows from the current 7.2 billion people to 9.6 billion by 2050. With increases in income, population, and demand for more nutrient-dense foods, global meat production is projected to increase by 206 million tons per year during the next 35 years. These changes in population and dietary practices have led to a tremendous rise in the demand for food protein, especially animal-source protein. Consuming the required amounts of protein is fundamental to human growth and health. Protein needs can be met through intakes of animal and plant-source foods. Increased consumption of food proteins is associated with increased greenhouse gas emissions and overutilization of water. Consequently, concerns exist regarding impacts of agricultural production, processing and distribution of food protein on the environment, ecosystem, and sustainability. To address these challenging issues, the New York Academy of Sciences organized the conference "Frontiers in Agricultural Sustainability: Studying the Protein Supply Chain to Improve Dietary Quality" to explore sustainable innovations in food science and programming aimed at producing the required quality and quantity of protein through improved supply chains worldwide. This report provides an extensive discussion of these issues and summaries of the presentations from the conference. PMID:25123207

  5. Production and supply of high-quality food protein for human consumption: sustainability, challenges, and innovations.

    PubMed

    Wu, Guoyao; Fanzo, Jessica; Miller, Dennis D; Pingali, Prabhu; Post, Mark; Steiner, Jean L; Thalacker-Mercer, Anna E

    2014-08-01

    The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations estimates that 843 million people worldwide are hungry and a greater number suffer from nutrient deficiencies. Approximately one billion people have inadequate protein intake. The challenge of preventing hunger and malnutrition will become even greater as the global population grows from the current 7.2 billion people to 9.6 billion by 2050. With increases in income, population, and demand for more nutrient-dense foods, global meat production is projected to increase by 206 million tons per year during the next 35 years. These changes in population and dietary practices have led to a tremendous rise in the demand for food protein, especially animal-source protein. Consuming the required amounts of protein is fundamental to human growth and health. Protein needs can be met through intakes of animal and plant-source foods. Increased consumption of food proteins is associated with increased greenhouse gas emissions and overutilization of water. Consequently, concerns exist regarding impacts of agricultural production, processing and distribution of food protein on the environment, ecosystem, and sustainability. To address these challenging issues, the New York Academy of Sciences organized the conference "Frontiers in Agricultural Sustainability: Studying the Protein Supply Chain to Improve Dietary Quality" to explore sustainable innovations in food science and programming aimed at producing the required quality and quantity of protein through improved supply chains worldwide. This report provides an extensive discussion of these issues and summaries of the presentations from the conference.

  6. Banana production systems: identification of alternative systems for more sustainable production.

    PubMed

    Bellamy, Angelina Sanderson

    2013-04-01

    Large-scale, monoculture production systems dependent on synthetic fertilizers and pesticides, increase yields, but are costly and have deleterious impacts on human health and the environment. This research investigates variations in banana production practices in Costa Rica, to identify alternative systems that combine high productivity and profitability, with reduced reliance on agrochemicals. Farm workers were observed during daily production activities; 39 banana producers and 8 extension workers/researchers were interviewed; and a review of field experiments conducted by the National Banana Corporation between 1997 and 2002 was made. Correspondence analysis showed that there is no structured variation in large-scale banana producers' practices, but two other banana production systems were identified: a small-scale organic system and a small-scale conventional coffee-banana intercropped system. Field-scale research may reveal ways that these practices can be scaled up to achieve a productive and profitable system producing high-quality export bananas with fewer or no pesticides.

  7. Overexpression of microRNAs enhances recombinant protein production in Chinese hamster ovary cells.

    PubMed

    Loh, Wan Ping; Loo, Bernard; Zhou, Lihan; Zhang, Peiqing; Lee, Dong-Yup; Yang, Yuansheng; Lam, Kong Peng

    2014-09-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are short, non-coding RNAs that can negatively regulate expression of multiple genes at post-transcriptional levels. Using miRNAs to target multiple genes and pathways is a promising cell-engineering strategy to increase recombinant protein production in mammalian cells. Here, we identified miRs-17, -19b, -20a, and -92a to be differentially expressed between high- and low- monoclonal antibody-producing Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cell clones using next-generation sequencing and quantitative real-time PCR. These miRNAs were stably overexpressed individually and in combination in a high-producing clone to assess their effects on CHO cell growth, recombinant protein productivity and product quality. Stably transfected pools demonstrated 24-34% increases in specific productivity (qP) and 21-31% increases in titer relative to the parental clone, without significant alterations in proliferation rates. The highest protein-producing clones isolated from these pools exhibited 130-140% increases in qP and titer compared to the parental clone, without major changes in product aggregation and N-glycosylation profile. From our clonal data, correlations between enhanced qP/titer and increased levels of miRs-17, -19b, and -92a were observed. Our results demonstrate the potential of miRs-17, -19b, and -92a as cell-engineering targets to increase recombinant protein production in mammalian cells. PMID:24819042

  8. Effects of social sustainability signaling on neural valuation signals and taste-experience of food products.

    PubMed

    Enax, Laura; Krapp, Vanessa; Piehl, Alexandra; Weber, Bernd

    2015-01-01

    Value-based decision making occurs when individuals choose between different alternatives and place a value on each alternative and its attributes. Marketing actions frequently manipulate product attributes, by adding, e.g., health claims on the packaging. A previous imaging study found that an emblem for organic products increased willingness to pay (WTP) and activity in the ventral striatum (VS). The current study investigated neural and behavioral processes underlying the influence of Fair Trade (FT) labeling on food valuation and choice. Sustainability is an important product attribute for many consumers, with FT signals being one way to highlight ethically sustainable production. Forty participants valuated products in combination with an FT emblem or no emblem and stated their WTP in a bidding task while in an MRI scanner. After that, participants tasted-objectively identical-chocolates, presented either as "FT" or as "conventionally produced". In the fMRI task, WTP was significantly higher for FT products. FT labeling increased activity in regions important for reward-processing and salience, that is, in the VS, anterior and posterior cingulate, as well as superior frontal gyrus. Subjective value, that is, WTP was correlated with activity in the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC). We find that the anterior cingulate, VS and superior frontal gyrus exhibit task-related increases in functional connectivity to the vmPFC when an FT product was evaluated. Effective connectivity analyses revealed a highly probable directed modulation of the vmPFC by those three regions, suggesting a network which alters valuation processes. We also found a significant taste-placebo effect, with higher experienced taste pleasantness and intensity for FT labeled chocolates. Our results reveal a possible neural mechanism underlying valuation processes of certified food products. The results are important in light of understanding current marketing trends as well as designing

  9. Effects of social sustainability signaling on neural valuation signals and taste-experience of food products.

    PubMed

    Enax, Laura; Krapp, Vanessa; Piehl, Alexandra; Weber, Bernd

    2015-01-01

    Value-based decision making occurs when individuals choose between different alternatives and place a value on each alternative and its attributes. Marketing actions frequently manipulate product attributes, by adding, e.g., health claims on the packaging. A previous imaging study found that an emblem for organic products increased willingness to pay (WTP) and activity in the ventral striatum (VS). The current study investigated neural and behavioral processes underlying the influence of Fair Trade (FT) labeling on food valuation and choice. Sustainability is an important product attribute for many consumers, with FT signals being one way to highlight ethically sustainable production. Forty participants valuated products in combination with an FT emblem or no emblem and stated their WTP in a bidding task while in an MRI scanner. After that, participants tasted-objectively identical-chocolates, presented either as "FT" or as "conventionally produced". In the fMRI task, WTP was significantly higher for FT products. FT labeling increased activity in regions important for reward-processing and salience, that is, in the VS, anterior and posterior cingulate, as well as superior frontal gyrus. Subjective value, that is, WTP was correlated with activity in the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC). We find that the anterior cingulate, VS and superior frontal gyrus exhibit task-related increases in functional connectivity to the vmPFC when an FT product was evaluated. Effective connectivity analyses revealed a highly probable directed modulation of the vmPFC by those three regions, suggesting a network which alters valuation processes. We also found a significant taste-placebo effect, with higher experienced taste pleasantness and intensity for FT labeled chocolates. Our results reveal a possible neural mechanism underlying valuation processes of certified food products. The results are important in light of understanding current marketing trends as well as designing

  10. Effects of social sustainability signaling on neural valuation signals and taste-experience of food products

    PubMed Central

    Enax, Laura; Krapp, Vanessa; Piehl, Alexandra; Weber, Bernd

    2015-01-01

    Value-based decision making occurs when individuals choose between different alternatives and place a value on each alternative and its attributes. Marketing actions frequently manipulate product attributes, by adding, e.g., health claims on the packaging. A previous imaging study found that an emblem for organic products increased willingness to pay (WTP) and activity in the ventral striatum (VS). The current study investigated neural and behavioral processes underlying the influence of Fair Trade (FT) labeling on food valuation and choice. Sustainability is an important product attribute for many consumers, with FT signals being one way to highlight ethically sustainable production. Forty participants valuated products in combination with an FT emblem or no emblem and stated their WTP in a bidding task while in an MRI scanner. After that, participants tasted—objectively identical—chocolates, presented either as “FT” or as “conventionally produced”. In the fMRI task, WTP was significantly higher for FT products. FT labeling increased activity in regions important for reward-processing and salience, that is, in the VS, anterior and posterior cingulate, as well as superior frontal gyrus. Subjective value, that is, WTP was correlated with activity in the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC). We find that the anterior cingulate, VS and superior frontal gyrus exhibit task-related increases in functional connectivity to the vmPFC when an FT product was evaluated. Effective connectivity analyses revealed a highly probable directed modulation of the vmPFC by those three regions, suggesting a network which alters valuation processes. We also found a significant taste-placebo effect, with higher experienced taste pleasantness and intensity for FT labeled chocolates. Our results reveal a possible neural mechanism underlying valuation processes of certified food products. The results are important in light of understanding current marketing trends as well as

  11. SALSA: a simulation tool to assess ecological sustainability of agricultural production.

    PubMed

    Eriksson, Ingrid Strid; Elmquist, Helena; Nybrant, Thomas

    2005-06-01

    In order to assess the ecological sustainability of agricultural production systems, there is a need for effective tools. We describe an environmental systems analysis tool called SALSA (Systems Ana/ysis for Sustainable Agriculture). It consists of substance/material flow models in which the simulation results are interpreted with life-cycle assessment methodology. The application of SALSA is demonstrated in a case study in which three different ways of producing pigs are compared with respect to energy input and the environmental impacts of global warming, eutrophication, and acidification. The scenario that combined a low-protein diet without soy meal with an improved manure-management technique with low nitrogen losses was the best for all impact categories studied. The strength of the SALSA models was their capacity to capture consequences of management options that had an influence on several processes on a farm, which enabled the type of complex studies we describe. PMID:16092274

  12. SALSA: a simulation tool to assess ecological sustainability of agricultural production.

    PubMed

    Eriksson, Ingrid Strid; Elmquist, Helena; Nybrant, Thomas

    2005-06-01

    In order to assess the ecological sustainability of agricultural production systems, there is a need for effective tools. We describe an environmental systems analysis tool called SALSA (Systems Ana/ysis for Sustainable Agriculture). It consists of substance/material flow models in which the simulation results are interpreted with life-cycle assessment methodology. The application of SALSA is demonstrated in a case study in which three different ways of producing pigs are compared with respect to energy input and the environmental impacts of global warming, eutrophication, and acidification. The scenario that combined a low-protein diet without soy meal with an improved manure-management technique with low nitrogen losses was the best for all impact categories studied. The strength of the SALSA models was their capacity to capture consequences of management options that had an influence on several processes on a farm, which enabled the type of complex studies we describe.

  13. Functional significance of dinitrogen fixation in sustaining coral productivity under oligotrophic conditions.

    PubMed

    Cardini, Ulisse; Bednarz, Vanessa N; Naumann, Malik S; van Hoytema, Nanne; Rix, Laura; Foster, Rachel A; Al-Rshaidat, Mamoon M D; Wild, Christian

    2015-11-01

    Functional traits define species by their ecological role in the ecosystem. Animals themselves are host-microbe ecosystems (holobionts), and the application of ecophysiological approaches can help to understand their functioning. In hard coral holobionts, communities of dinitrogen (N2)-fixing prokaryotes (diazotrophs) may contribute a functional trait by providing bioavailable nitrogen (N) that could sustain coral productivity under oligotrophic conditions. This study quantified N2 fixation by diazotrophs associated with four genera of hermatypic corals on a northern Red Sea fringing reef exposed to high seasonality. We found N2 fixation activity to be 5- to 10-fold higher in summer, when inorganic nutrient concentrations were lowest and water temperature and light availability highest. Concurrently, coral gross primary productivity remained stable despite lower Symbiodinium densities and tissue chlorophyll a contents. In contrast, chlorophyll a content per Symbiodinium cell increased from spring to summer, suggesting that algal cells overcame limitation of N, an essential element for chlorophyll synthesis. In fact, N2 fixation was positively correlated with coral productivity in summer, when its contribution was estimated to meet 11% of the Symbiodinium N requirements. These results provide evidence of an important functional role of diazotrophs in sustaining coral productivity when alternative external N sources are scarce. PMID:26511052

  14. Functional significance of dinitrogen fixation in sustaining coral productivity under oligotrophic conditions.

    PubMed

    Cardini, Ulisse; Bednarz, Vanessa N; Naumann, Malik S; van Hoytema, Nanne; Rix, Laura; Foster, Rachel A; Al-Rshaidat, Mamoon M D; Wild, Christian

    2015-11-01

    Functional traits define species by their ecological role in the ecosystem. Animals themselves are host-microbe ecosystems (holobionts), and the application of ecophysiological approaches can help to understand their functioning. In hard coral holobionts, communities of dinitrogen (N2)-fixing prokaryotes (diazotrophs) may contribute a functional trait by providing bioavailable nitrogen (N) that could sustain coral productivity under oligotrophic conditions. This study quantified N2 fixation by diazotrophs associated with four genera of hermatypic corals on a northern Red Sea fringing reef exposed to high seasonality. We found N2 fixation activity to be 5- to 10-fold higher in summer, when inorganic nutrient concentrations were lowest and water temperature and light availability highest. Concurrently, coral gross primary productivity remained stable despite lower Symbiodinium densities and tissue chlorophyll a contents. In contrast, chlorophyll a content per Symbiodinium cell increased from spring to summer, suggesting that algal cells overcame limitation of N, an essential element for chlorophyll synthesis. In fact, N2 fixation was positively correlated with coral productivity in summer, when its contribution was estimated to meet 11% of the Symbiodinium N requirements. These results provide evidence of an important functional role of diazotrophs in sustaining coral productivity when alternative external N sources are scarce.

  15. Expansion of Sugarcane area for Ethanol production in Brazil: a Threat to Food Production and Environmental Sustainability?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Monteiro, J. M.; Coutinho, H. L.; Veiga, L. B.

    2012-12-01

    The raise in fossil fuels prices and the increase in Greenhouse Gas emissions is leading nations to adopt non-fossil fuels based energy sources. Sugarcane crops for biofuel production are expanding fast in Brazil, mainly through land use change (LUC) processes, in substitution of pasturelands and grain crops plantations. Would these changes affect negatively sustainability assessments of bioethanol production in the future? We estimate the extent of sugarcane cropland needed to produce sufficient ethanol to attend to market demands. This work presents a baseline scenario for sugarcane cropping area in Brazil in 2017, taking into account market forces (supply and demand). We also comment on a policy instrument targetting sustainable sugarcane production in Brazil. The expansion scenarios took into account the demand for ethanol from 2008-2017, produced by the Energy Research Corporation, of Brazil. In order to develop the expansion scenario, we estimated the amount of sugarcane needed to attend the ethanol demand. We then calculated the area needed to generate that amount of sugarcane. The analytical parameters were: 1) one tonne of sugarcane produces an average 81.6 liters of ethanol; 2) the average sugarcane crop productivity varied linearly from 81.4 tons/hectare in 2008 to 86.2 tons/hectare in 2017. We also assumed that sugarcane productivity in 2017 as the current average productivity of sugarcane in the State of São Paulo. The results show that the requirement for 3.5 million ha in 2007 will increase to 9 million ha in 2017. The Sugarcane Agroecologic Zoning (ZAECANA), published by Embrapa (2009), is a tool that not only informs the territory occupation and use policies, but also classifies land as qualified, restricted or non-qualified for the plantation of sugarcane crops. The ZAECANA is based on soil and climate suitability assessments, and is presented in a spatially-explicit format. Adopting the precautionary principle, a national policy was established

  16. Nuclear Energy - Hydrogen Production - Fuel Cell: A Road Towards Future China's Sustainable Energy Strategy

    SciTech Connect

    Zhiwei Zhou

    2006-07-01

    Sustainable development of Chinese economy in 21. century will mainly rely on self-supply of clean energy with indigenous natural resources. The burden of current coal-dominant energy mix and the environmental stress due to energy consumptions has led nuclear power to be an indispensable choice for further expanding electricity generation capacity in China and for reducing greenhouse effect gases emission. The application of nuclear energy in producing substitutive fuels for road transportation vehicles will also be of importance in future China's sustainable energy strategy. This paper illustrates the current status of China's energy supply and the energy demand required for establishing a harmonic and prosperous society in China. In fact China's energy market faces following three major challenges, namely (1) gaps between energy supply and demand; (2) low efficiency in energy utilization, and (3) severe environmental pollution. This study emphasizes that China should implement sustainable energy development policy and pay great attention to the construction of energy saving recycle economy. Based on current forecast, the nuclear energy development in China will encounter a high-speed track. The demand for crude oil will reach 400-450 million tons in 2020 in which Chinese indigenous production will remain 180 million tons. The increase of the expected crude oil will be about 150 million tons on the basis of 117 million tons of imported oil in 2004 with the time span of 15 years. This demand increase of crude oil certainly will influence China's energy supply security and to find the substitution will be a big challenge to Chinese energy industry. This study illustrates an analysis of the market demands to future hydrogen economy of China. Based on current status of technology development of HTGR in China, this study describes a road of hydrogen production with nuclear energy. The possible technology choices in relation to a number of types of nuclear reactors are

  17. Banana production systems: identification of alternative systems for more sustainable production.

    PubMed

    Bellamy, Angelina Sanderson

    2013-04-01

    Large-scale, monoculture production systems dependent on synthetic fertilizers and pesticides, increase yields, but are costly and have deleterious impacts on human health and the environment. This research investigates variations in banana production practices in Costa Rica, to identify alternative systems that combine high productivity and profitability, with reduced reliance on agrochemicals. Farm workers were observed during daily production activities; 39 banana producers and 8 extension workers/researchers were interviewed; and a review of field experiments conducted by the National Banana Corporation between 1997 and 2002 was made. Correspondence analysis showed that there is no structured variation in large-scale banana producers' practices, but two other banana production systems were identified: a small-scale organic system and a small-scale conventional coffee-banana intercropped system. Field-scale research may reveal ways that these practices can be scaled up to achieve a productive and profitable system producing high-quality export bananas with fewer or no pesticides. PMID:23055273

  18. Sustainable hydrogen production by ethanol steam reforming using a partially reduced copper-nickel oxide catalyst.

    PubMed

    Chen, Li-Chung; Cheng, Hongkui; Chiang, Chih-Wei; Lin, Shawn D

    2015-05-22

    Hydrogen production through the use of renewable raw materials and renewable energy is crucial for advancing its applications as an energy carrier. In this study, we fabricated a solid oxide solution of Cu and Ni within a confined pore space, followed by a partial reduction, to produce a highly efficient catalyst for ethanol steam reforming (ESR). At 300 °C, EtOH is completely converted, a H2 yield of approximately 5 mol per mol is achieved, and CO2 is the main carbon-containing product. This demonstrates that H2 production from bioethanol is an efficient and sustainable approach. Such a highly efficient ESR catalyst is attributed to the ability of the metal-oxide interface to facilitate the transformation of CHx adspecies from acetaldehyde decomposition into methoxy-like adspecies, which are reformed readily to produce H2 and consequently reduce CH4 formation.

  19. Silicification-induced cell aggregation for the sustainable production of H2 under aerobic conditions.

    PubMed

    Xiong, Wei; Zhao, Xiaohong; Zhu, Genxing; Shao, Changyu; Li, Yaling; Ma, Weimin; Xu, Xurong; Tang, Ruikang

    2015-10-01

    Photobiological hydrogen production is of great importance because of its promise for generating clean renewable energy. In nature, green algae cannot produce hydrogen as a result of the extreme sensitivity of hydrogenase to oxygen. However, we find that silicification-induced green algae aggregates can achieve sustainable photobiological hydrogen production even under natural aerobic conditions. The core-shell structure of the green algae aggregates creates a balance between photosynthetic electron generation and hydrogenase activity, thus allowing the production of hydrogen. This finding provides a viable pathway for the solar-driven splitting of water into hydrogen and oxygen to develop green energy alternatives by using rationally designed cell-material complexes. PMID:26302695

  20. Adaptation to climate change in industry: improving resource efficiency through sustainable production applications.

    PubMed

    Alkayal, Emrah; Bogurcu, Merve; Ulutas, Ferda; Demirer, Göksel Niyazi

    2015-01-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate the climate change adaptation opportunities of six companies from different sectors through resource efficiency and sustainable production. A total of 77 sustainable production options were developed for the companies based on the audits conducted. After screening these opportunities with each company's staff, 19 options were selected and implemented. Significant water savings (849,668 m3/year) were achieved as a result of the applications that targeted reduction of water use. In addition to water savings, the energy consumption was reduced by 3,607 MWh, which decreased the CO2 emissions by 904.1 tons/year. Moreover, the consumption of 278.4 tons/year of chemicals (e.g., NaCl, CdO, NaCN) was avoided, thus the corresponding pollution load to the wastewater treatment plant was reduced. Besides the tangible improvements, other gains were achieved, such as improved product quality, improved health and safety conditions, reduced maintenance requirements, and ensured compliance with national and EU regulations. To the best of the authors' knowledge, this study is the first ever activity in Turkey devoted to climate change adaptation in the private sector. This study may serve as a building block in Turkey for the integration of climate change adaptation and mitigation approach in the industry, since water efficiency (adaptation) and carbon reduction (mitigation) are achieved simultaneously.

  1. Land-based production of animal protein: impacts, efficiency, and sustainability.

    PubMed

    Wu, Guoyao; Bazer, Fuller W; Cross, H Russell

    2014-11-01

    Land-based production of high-quality protein by livestock and poultry plays an important role in improving human nutrition, growth, and health, as well as economical and social developments worldwide. With exponential growth of the global population and marked rises in meat consumption per capita, demands for animal-source protein are expected to increase by 72% between 2013 and 2050. This raises concerns about the sustainability and environmental impacts of animal agriculture. An attractive solution to meeting the increasing needs for animal products and mitigating undesired effects of agricultural practices is to enhance the efficiency of animal growth, reproduction, and lactation. Breeding techniques may help achieve this goal, but have only met with limited success. A promising, mechanism-based approach is to optimize the proportion and amounts of amino acids in diets for maximizing whole-body protein synthesis and feed efficiency. Improvements in farm animal productivity will not only decrease the contamination of soils, groundwater, and air by excessive manure, but will also help sustain animal agriculture to produce high-quality protein for the expanding population in the face of diminishing resources.

  2. Land-based production of animal protein: impacts, efficiency, and sustainability.

    PubMed

    Wu, Guoyao; Bazer, Fuller W; Cross, H Russell

    2014-11-01

    Land-based production of high-quality protein by livestock and poultry plays an important role in improving human nutrition, growth, and health, as well as economical and social developments worldwide. With exponential growth of the global population and marked rises in meat consumption per capita, demands for animal-source protein are expected to increase by 72% between 2013 and 2050. This raises concerns about the sustainability and environmental impacts of animal agriculture. An attractive solution to meeting the increasing needs for animal products and mitigating undesired effects of agricultural practices is to enhance the efficiency of animal growth, reproduction, and lactation. Breeding techniques may help achieve this goal, but have only met with limited success. A promising, mechanism-based approach is to optimize the proportion and amounts of amino acids in diets for maximizing whole-body protein synthesis and feed efficiency. Improvements in farm animal productivity will not only decrease the contamination of soils, groundwater, and air by excessive manure, but will also help sustain animal agriculture to produce high-quality protein for the expanding population in the face of diminishing resources. PMID:25376888

  3. Integrated nutrient management (INM) for sustaining crop productivity and reducing environmental impact: a review.

    PubMed

    Wu, Wei; Ma, Baoluo

    2015-04-15

    The increasing food demands of a growing human population and the need for an environmentally friendly strategy for sustainable agricultural development require significant attention when addressing the issue of enhancing crop productivity. Here we discuss the role of integrated nutrient management (INM) in resolving these concerns, which has been proposed as a promising strategy for addressing such challenges. INM has multifaceted potential for the improvement of plant performance and resource efficiency while also enabling the protection of the environment and resource quality. This review examines the concepts, objectives, procedures and principles of INM. A comprehensive literature search revealed that INM enhances crop yields by 8-150% compared with conventional practices, increases water-use efficiency, and the economic returns to farmers, while improving grain quality and soil health and sustainability. Model simulation and fate assessment further reveal that reactive nitrogen (N) losses and GHG (greenhouse gas) emissions are reduced substantially under advanced INM practices. Lower inputs of chemical fertilizer and therefore lower human and environmental costs (such as intensity of land use, N use, reactive N losses and GHG emissions) were achieved under advanced INM practices without compromising crop yields. Various approaches and perspectives for further development of INM in the near future are also proposed and discussed. Strong and convincing evidence indicates that INM practice could be an innovative and environmentally friendly strategy for sustainable agriculture worldwide. PMID:25644838

  4. Integrated nutrient management (INM) for sustaining crop productivity and reducing environmental impact: a review.

    PubMed

    Wu, Wei; Ma, Baoluo

    2015-04-15

    The increasing food demands of a growing human population and the need for an environmentally friendly strategy for sustainable agricultural development require significant attention when addressing the issue of enhancing crop productivity. Here we discuss the role of integrated nutrient management (INM) in resolving these concerns, which has been proposed as a promising strategy for addressing such challenges. INM has multifaceted potential for the improvement of plant performance and resource efficiency while also enabling the protection of the environment and resource quality. This review examines the concepts, objectives, procedures and principles of INM. A comprehensive literature search revealed that INM enhances crop yields by 8-150% compared with conventional practices, increases water-use efficiency, and the economic returns to farmers, while improving grain quality and soil health and sustainability. Model simulation and fate assessment further reveal that reactive nitrogen (N) losses and GHG (greenhouse gas) emissions are reduced substantially under advanced INM practices. Lower inputs of chemical fertilizer and therefore lower human and environmental costs (such as intensity of land use, N use, reactive N losses and GHG emissions) were achieved under advanced INM practices without compromising crop yields. Various approaches and perspectives for further development of INM in the near future are also proposed and discussed. Strong and convincing evidence indicates that INM practice could be an innovative and environmentally friendly strategy for sustainable agriculture worldwide.

  5. Knowledge production and learning for sustainable landscapes: seven steps using social-ecological systems as laboratories.

    PubMed

    Angelstam, Per; Elbakidze, Marine; Axelsson, Robert; Dixelius, Malcolm; Törnblom, Johan

    2013-03-01

    There are multiple challenges regarding use and governance of landscapes' goods, functions and intangible values for ecosystem health and human well-being. One group of challenges is to measure and assess principal sustainability dimensions through performance targets, so stakeholders have transparent information about states and trends. Another group is to develop adaptive governance at multiple levels, and management of larger geographical areas across scales. Addressing these challenges, we present a framework for transdisciplinary research using multiple landscapes as place-based case studies that integrates multiple research disciplines and non-academic actors: (1) identify a suite of landscapes, and for each (2) review landscape history, (3) map stakeholders, use and non-use values, products and land use, (4) analyze institutions, policies and the system of governance, (5) measure ecological, economic, social and cultural sustainability, (6) assess sustainability dimensions and governance, and finally (7) make comparisons and synthesize. Collaboration, communication and dissemination are additional core features. We discuss barriers bridges and bridges for applying this approach.

  6. Sustainable energy crop: An analysis of ethanol production from cassava in Thailand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ubolsook, Aerwadee

    The first essay formulates a dynamic general equilibrium optimal control model of an energy crop as part of a country's planned resource use over a period of time. The model attempts to allocate consumption, production, and factors of production to achieve the country's sustainable development goal. A Cobb-Douglas specification is used for both utility and production functions in the model. We calibrate the model with Thailand data. The selected model is used to generate the stationary state solution and to simulate the optimal policy function and optimal time paths. Two methods are used: a linear approximation method and the Runke-Kutta reverse shooting method. The model provides numerical results that can be used as information for decision makers and stakeholders to devise an economic plan to achieve sustainable development goals. The second essay studies the effect of international trade and changes in labor supply, land supply, and the price of imported energy on energy crop production for bio fuel and food, as well as impacts on social welfare. We develop a dynamic general equilibrium model to describe two baseline scenarios, a closed economy and an open economy. We find that international trade increases welfare and decreases the energy price. Furthermore, resources are allocated to produce more food under the open economy scenario than the quantities produced under a closed economy assumption. An increase in labor supply and land supply result in an increase in social welfare. An increase in imported energy price leads to a welfare loss, higher energy production, and lower food production. The third essay develops a partial equilibrium econometric model to project the impacts of an increase in ethanol production on the Thai agriculture sector over the next ten years. The model is applied to three scenarios for analyzing the effect of government ethanol production targets. The results from the baseline model and scenario analysis indicate that an expansion

  7. Optimizing root system architecture in biofuel crops for sustainable energy production and soil carbon sequestration.

    PubMed

    To, Jennifer Pc; Zhu, Jinming; Benfey, Philip N; Elich, Tedd

    2010-01-01

    Root system architecture (RSA) describes the dynamic spatial configuration of different types and ages of roots in a plant, which allows adaptation to different environments. Modifications in RSA enhance agronomic traits in crops and have been implicated in soil organic carbon content. Together, these fundamental properties of RSA contribute to the net carbon balance and overall sustainability of biofuels. In this article, we will review recent data supporting carbon sequestration by biofuel crops, highlight current progress in studying RSA, and discuss future opportunities for optimizing RSA for biofuel production and soil carbon sequestration.

  8. Knowledge production and learning for sustainable landscapes: forewords by the researchers and stakeholders.

    PubMed

    Angelstam, Per; Elbakidze, Marine; Axelsson, Robert; Koch, Niels Elers; Tyupenko, Tatiana I; Mariev, Alexandr N; Myhrman, Lennart

    2013-03-01

    This special issue of AMBIO presents a new approach to sustainability science that goes beyond interdisciplinary research. Using coupled natural and human systems, or landscapes, as multiple case studies in Europe's East and West knowledge production and learning toward transdisciplinary research was applied in Sweden, countries in Central and Eastern Europe, and Russia. First, the research group Forest-Landscape-Society summarizes the research program (2005-2012) behind this special issue of AMBIO and its development to participate in transdisciplinary research. Second, stakeholders at multiple levels provide their views on the new approach presented and reported.

  9. Optimizing root system architecture in biofuel crops for sustainable energy production and soil carbon sequestration

    PubMed Central

    To, Jennifer PC; Zhu, Jinming; Benfey, Philip N

    2010-01-01

    Root system architecture (RSA) describes the dynamic spatial configuration of different types and ages of roots in a plant, which allows adaptation to different environments. Modifications in RSA enhance agronomic traits in crops and have been implicated in soil organic carbon content. Together, these fundamental properties of RSA contribute to the net carbon balance and overall sustainability of biofuels. In this article, we will review recent data supporting carbon sequestration by biofuel crops, highlight current progress in studying RSA, and discuss future opportunities for optimizing RSA for biofuel production and soil carbon sequestration. PMID:21173868

  10. Environmental Sustainability and Effects on Urban Micro Region using Agent-Based Modeling of Urbanisation in Select Major Indian Cities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aithal, B. H.

    2015-12-01

    Abstract: Urbanisation has gained momentum with globalization in India. Policy decisions to set up commercial, industrial hubs have fuelled large scale migration, added with population upsurge has contributed to the fast growing urban region that needs to be monitored in order to design sustainable urban cities. Unplanned urbanization have resulted in the growth of peri-urban region referred to as urban sprawl, are often devoid of basic amenities and infrastructure leading to large scale environmental problems that are evident. Remote sensing data acquired through space borne sensors at regular interval helps in understanding urban dynamics aided by Geoinformatics which has proved very effective in mapping and monitoring for sustainable urban planning. Cellular automata (CA) is a robust approach for the spatially explicit simulation of land-use land cover dynamics. CA uses rules, states, conditions that are vital factors in modelling urbanisation. This communication effectively introduces simulation assistances of CA with the agent based modelling supported by its fuzzy characteristics and weightages through analytical hierarchal process (AHP). This has been done considering perceived agents such as industries, natural resource etc. Respective agent's role in development of a particular regions into an urban area has been examined with weights and its influence of each of these agents based on its characteristics functions. Validation was performed obtaining a high kappa coefficient indicating the quality and the allocation performance of the model & validity of the model to predict future projections. The prediction using the proposed model was performed for 2030. Further environmental sustainability of each of these cities are explored such as water features, environment, greenhouse gas emissions, effects on human human health etc., Modeling suggests trend of various land use classes transformation with the spurt in urban expansions based on specific regions and

  11. Killing bacteria within biofilms by sustained release of tetracycline from triple-layered electrospun micro/nanofibre matrices of polycaprolactone and poly(ethylene-co-vinyl acetate).

    PubMed

    Alhusein, Nour; De Bank, Paul A; Blagbrough, Ian S; Bolhuis, Albert

    2013-12-01

    We report the controlled release of the antibiotic tetracycline (tet) HCl from a triple-layered electrospun matrix consisting of a central layer of poly(ethylene-co-vinyl acetate (PEVA) sandwiched between outer layers of poly-ε-caprolactone (PCL). These micro/nanofibre layers with tet successfully encapsulated (essentially quantitatively at 3 and 5 % w/w) in each layer, efficiently inhibited the growth of a panel of bacteria, including clinical isolates, as shown by a modified Kirby-Bauer disc assay. Furthermore, they demonstrated high biological activity in increasingly complex models of biofilm formation (models that are moving closer to the situation in a wound) by stopping biofilm formation, by killing preformed biofilms and killing mature, dense biofilm colonies of Staphylococcus aureus MRSA252. Tet is clinically useful with potential applications in wound healing and especially in complicated skin and skin-structure infections; electrospinning provides good encapsulation efficiency of tet within PCL/PEVA/PCL polymers in micro/nanofibre layers which display sustained antibiotic release in formulations that are anti-biofilm.

  12. 36 CFR 223.219 - Sustainable harvest of special forest products.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... making their sustainability determination and establishing monitoring time frames consistent with... Forest Service shall monitor the effects of harvesting on the sustainability of special forest...

  13. Doubling sockeye salmon production in the Fraser River—Is this sustainable development?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Henderson, Michael A.; Healey, Michael C.

    1993-11-01

    We evaluate a proposal to double sockeye salmon production from the Fraser River and conclude that significant changes will be required to current management processes, particularly the way available catch is allocated, if the plan is to be consistent with five major principles embodied in the concept of sustainable development. Doubling sockeye salmon production will not, in itself, increase economic equity either regionally or globally. Developing nations may actually be hindered in their attempts to institute other, nonsalmon fisheries in the North Pacific Ocean as a result of the possible interception of salmon. Further, other users of the Fraser River basin will have to forgo opportunities so that salmon habitat can be conserved. If doubling sockeye salmon production is to meet the goal of doing more with less, it will be necessary to develop more efficient technologies to harvest the fish. If increasing salmon production is to reflect the integration of environmental and economic decision making at the highest level, then a serious attempt must be made to incorporate environmental assets into national economic accounting. Finally, to promote biodiversity and cultural self-sufficiency within the Fraser River basin, it will be important to safeguard the small, less-productive salmon stocks as well as the large ones and to allocate a substantial portion of the increased production to the Native Indian community.

  14. Food and sustainability: do consumers recognize, understand and value on-package information on production standards?

    PubMed

    Hoogland, Carolien T; de Boer, Joop; Boersema, Jan J

    2007-07-01

    We tested how consumers recognize, understand and value on-package information about food production methods that may contribute to a more sustainable agriculture. Nine copy tests were formed, each containing one out of three products and one out of three panels of information. The products were (1) fillet of chicken, (2) semi-skimmed milk and (3) fillet of salmon. The panels of information were (a) a certified organic logo and details about the animal welfare standards of organic products, (b) just the logo, or (c) a statement in which the product was attributed to the world market. About 371 customers of a supermarket in the city of Amsterdam filled in a questionnaire, which included a subset of three copy tests. The results showed that many consumers did not realize that the organic logo already covers all the standards. They were inclined to underestimate the distinctive advantage of the logo; products with logo and details got higher ratings of positive attributes but were also considered more expensive. As a consequence, the detailed information panels enabled consumers to choose more in agreement with their personal values but the net impacts on purchase intentions were small. PMID:17303285

  15. Storage sizing for embedding of local gas production in a micro gas grid

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alkano, D.; Nefkens, W. J.; Scherpen, J. M. A.; Volkerts, M.

    2014-12-01

    In this paper we study the optimal control of a micro grid of biogas producers. The paper considers the possibility to have a local storage device for each producer, who partly consumes his own production, i.e. prosumer. In addition, connected prosumers can sell stored gas to create revenue from it. An optimization model is employed to derive the size of storage device and to provide a pricing mechanism in an effort to value the stored gas. Taking into account physical grid constraints, the model is constructed in a centralized scheme of model predictive control. Case studies show that there is a relation between the demand and price profiles in terms of peaks and lows. The price profiles generally follow each other. The case studies are employed as well to to study the impacts of model parameters on deriving the storage size.

  16. Sustainable Systems Analysis of Production and Transportation Scenarios for Conventional and Bio-based Energy Commodities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doran, E. M.; Golden, J. S.; Nowacek, D. P.

    2013-12-01

    International commerce places unique pressures on the sustainability of water resources and marine environments. System impacts include noise, emissions, and chemical and biological pollutants like introduction of invasive species into key ecosystems. At the same time, maritime trade also enables the sustainability ambition of intragenerational equity in the economy through the global circulation of commodities and manufactured goods, including agricultural, energy and mining resources (UN Trade and Development Board 2013). This paper presents a framework to guide the analysis of the multiple dimensions of the sustainable commerce-ocean nexus. As a demonstration case, we explore the social, economic and environmental aspects of the nexus framework using scenarios for the production and transportation of conventional and bio-based energy commodities. Using coupled LCA and GIS methodologies, we are able to orient the findings spatially for additional insight. Previous work on the sustainable use of marine resources has focused on distinct aspects of the maritime environment. The framework presented here, integrates the anthropogenic use, governance and impacts on the marine and coastal environments with the natural components of the system. A similar framework has been highly effective in progressing the study of land-change science (Turner et al 2007), however modification is required for the unique context of the marine environment. This framework will enable better research integration and planning for sustainability objectives including mitigation and adaptation to climate change, sea level rise, reduced dependence on fossil fuels, protection of critical marine habitat and species, and better management of the ocean as an emerging resource base for the production and transport of commodities and energy across the globe. The framework can also be adapted for vulnerability analysis, resilience studies and to evaluate the trends in production, consumption and

  17. Community Markets for Conservation (COMACO) links biodiversity conservation with sustainable improvements in livelihoods and food production.

    PubMed

    Lewis, Dale; Bell, Samuel D; Fay, John; Bothi, Kim L; Gatere, Lydiah; Kabila, Makando; Mukamba, Mwangala; Matokwani, Edwin; Mushimbalume, Matthews; Moraru, Carmen I; Lehmann, Johannes; Lassoie, James; Wolfe, David; Lee, David R; Buck, Louise; Travis, Alexander J

    2011-08-23

    In the Luangwa Valley, Zambia, persistent poverty and hunger present linked challenges to rural development and biodiversity conservation. Both household coping strategies and larger-scale economic development efforts have caused severe natural resource degradation that limits future economic opportunities and endangers ecosystem services. A model based on a business infrastructure has been developed to promote and maintain sustainable agricultural and natural resource management practices, leading to direct and indirect conservation outcomes. The Community Markets for Conservation (COMACO) model operates primarily with communities surrounding national parks, strengthening conservation benefits produced by these protected areas. COMACO first identifies the least food-secure households and trains them in sustainable agricultural practices that minimize threats to natural resources while meeting household needs. In addition, COMACO identifies people responsible for severe natural resource depletion and trains them to generate alternative income sources. In an effort to maintain compliance with these practices, COMACO provides extension support and access to high-value markets that would otherwise be inaccessible to participants. Because the model is continually evolving via adaptive management, success or failure of the model as a whole is difficult to quantify at this early stage. We therefore test specific hypotheses and present data documenting the stabilization of previously declining wildlife populations; the meeting of thresholds of productivity that give COMACO access to stable, high-value markets and progress toward economic self-sufficiency; and the adoption of sustainable agricultural practices by participants and other community members. Together, these findings describe a unique, business-oriented model for poverty alleviation, food production, and biodiversity conservation.

  18. Community Markets for Conservation (COMACO) links biodiversity conservation with sustainable improvements in livelihoods and food production

    PubMed Central

    Lewis, Dale; Bell, Samuel D.; Fay, John; Bothi, Kim L.; Gatere, Lydiah; Kabila, Makando; Mukamba, Mwangala; Matokwani, Edwin; Mushimbalume, Matthews; Moraru, Carmen I.; Lehmann, Johannes; Lassoie, James; Wolfe, David; Lee, David R.; Buck, Louise; Travis, Alexander J.

    2011-01-01

    In the Luangwa Valley, Zambia, persistent poverty and hunger present linked challenges to rural development and biodiversity conservation. Both household coping strategies and larger-scale economic development efforts have caused severe natural resource degradation that limits future economic opportunities and endangers ecosystem services. A model based on a business infrastructure has been developed to promote and maintain sustainable agricultural and natural resource management practices, leading to direct and indirect conservation outcomes. The Community Markets for Conservation (COMACO) model operates primarily with communities surrounding national parks, strengthening conservation benefits produced by these protected areas. COMACO first identifies the least food-secure households and trains them in sustainable agricultural practices that minimize threats to natural resources while meeting household needs. In addition, COMACO identifies people responsible for severe natural resource depletion and trains them to generate alternative income sources. In an effort to maintain compliance with these practices, COMACO provides extension support and access to high-value markets that would otherwise be inaccessible to participants. Because the model is continually evolving via adaptive management, success or failure of the model as a whole is difficult to quantify at this early stage. We therefore test specific hypotheses and present data documenting the stabilization of previously declining wildlife populations; the meeting of thresholds of productivity that give COMACO access to stable, high-value markets and progress toward economic self-sufficiency; and the adoption of sustainable agricultural practices by participants and other community members. Together, these findings describe a unique, business-oriented model for poverty alleviation, food production, and biodiversity conservation. PMID:21873184

  19. Environmental solutions for the sustainable production of bioactive natural products from the marine sponge Crambe crambe.

    PubMed

    Pérez-López, Paula; Ternon, Eva; González-García, Sara; Genta-Jouve, Grégory; Feijoo, Gumersindo; Thomas, Olivier P; Moreira, Ma Teresa

    2014-03-15

    Crambe crambe is a Mediterranean marine sponge known to produce original natural substances belonging to two families of guanidine alkaloids, namely crambescins and crambescidins, which exhibit cytotoxic and antiviral activities. These compounds are therefore considered as potential anticancer drugs. The present study focuses on the environmental assessment of a novel in vivo process for the production of pure crambescin and crambescidin using sponge specimens cultured in aquarium. The assessment was performed following the ISO 14040 standard and extended from the production of the different mass and energy flows to the system to the growth of the sponge in indoor aquarium and further periodic extraction and purification of the bioactive compounds. According to the results, the two stages that have a remarkable contribution to all impact categories are the purification of the bioactive molecules followed by the maintenance of the sponge culture in the aquarium. Among the involved activities, the production of the chemicals (particularly methanol) together with the electricity requirements (especially due to the aquarium lighting) are responsible for up to 90% of the impact in most of the assessed categories. However, the contributions of other stages to the environmental burdens, such as the collection of sponges, considerably depend on the assumptions made during the inventory stage. The simulation of alternative scenarios has led to propose improvement alternatives that may allow significant reductions ranging from 20% to 70%, mainly thanks to the reduction of electricity requirements as well as the partial reuse of methanol.

  20. Dedicated Industrial Oilseed Crops as Metabolic Engineering Platforms for Sustainable Industrial Feedstock Production.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Li-Hua; Krens, Frans; Smith, Mark A; Li, Xueyuan; Qi, Weicong; van Loo, Eibertus N; Iven, Tim; Feussner, Ivo; Nazarenus, Tara J; Huai, Dongxin; Taylor, David C; Zhou, Xue-Rong; Green, Allan G; Shockey, Jay; Klasson, K Thomas; Mullen, Robert T; Huang, Bangquan; Dyer, John M; Cahoon, Edgar B

    2016-02-26

    Feedstocks for industrial applications ranging from polymers to lubricants are largely derived from petroleum, a non-renewable resource. Vegetable oils with fatty acid structures and storage forms tailored for specific industrial uses offer renewable and potentially sustainable sources of petrochemical-type functionalities. A wide array of industrial vegetable oils can be generated through biotechnology, but will likely require non-commodity oilseed platforms dedicated to specialty oil production for commercial acceptance. Here we show the feasibility of three Brassicaceae oilseeds crambe, camelina, and carinata, none of which are widely cultivated for food use, as hosts for complex metabolic engineering of wax esters for lubricant applications. Lines producing wax esters >20% of total seed oil were generated for each crop and further improved for high temperature oxidative stability by down-regulation of fatty acid polyunsaturation. Field cultivation of optimized wax ester-producing crambe demonstrated commercial utility of these engineered crops and a path for sustainable production of other industrial oils in dedicated specialty oilseeds.

  1. Sustainable intensive livestock production demands manure and exhaust air treatment technologies.

    PubMed

    Melse, Roland W; Timmerman, Maikel

    2009-11-01

    Intensive livestock production is connected with a number of environmental effects, including discharges to soils and surface waters and emissions to the atmosphere. In areas with a high livestock density the low availability of nearby arable land, together with the preferred use of chemical fertilizer by arable farmers, results in high off-farm disposal costs for manure. Furthermore, ammonia abatement technologies, such as treatment of exhaust air, are important as ammonia emissions may account up to a quarter of the total nitrogen flux. Firstly, the paper describes and discusses the development of manure treatment in the Netherlands since the 1970's. Manure treatment processes that result in products that compete with and replace the use of chemical fertilizers can (partly) close the nutrient cycle again. From this point of view aerobic treatment of manure (nitrification/denitrification) can not be considered sustainable as nitrogen is taken out of the cycle at high environmental costs. Secondly, the state-of-the-art of techniques for treatment of exhaust air is presented. Besides ammonia, application of air treatment may also reduce environmental emissions of odour and particulate matter (dust). Both manure treatment and treatment of exhaust air are considered essential for sustainable livestock operations in areas with a high livestock density.

  2. Dedicated Industrial Oilseed Crops as Metabolic Engineering Platforms for Sustainable Industrial Feedstock Production

    PubMed Central

    Zhu, Li-Hua; Krens, Frans; Smith, Mark A.; Li, Xueyuan; Qi, Weicong; van Loo, Eibertus N.; Iven, Tim; Feussner, Ivo; Nazarenus, Tara J.; Huai, Dongxin; Taylor, David C.; Zhou, Xue-Rong; Green, Allan G.; Shockey, Jay; Klasson, K. Thomas; Mullen, Robert T.; Huang, Bangquan; Dyer, John M.; Cahoon, Edgar B.

    2016-01-01

    Feedstocks for industrial applications ranging from polymers to lubricants are largely derived from petroleum, a non-renewable resource. Vegetable oils with fatty acid structures and storage forms tailored for specific industrial uses offer renewable and potentially sustainable sources of petrochemical-type functionalities. A wide array of industrial vegetable oils can be generated through biotechnology, but will likely require non-commodity oilseed platforms dedicated to specialty oil production for commercial acceptance. Here we show the feasibility of three Brassicaceae oilseeds crambe, camelina, and carinata, none of which are widely cultivated for food use, as hosts for complex metabolic engineering of wax esters for lubricant applications. Lines producing wax esters >20% of total seed oil were generated for each crop and further improved for high temperature oxidative stability by down-regulation of fatty acid polyunsaturation. Field cultivation of optimized wax ester-producing crambe demonstrated commercial utility of these engineered crops and a path for sustainable production of other industrial oils in dedicated specialty oilseeds. PMID:26916792

  3. Dedicated Industrial Oilseed Crops as Metabolic Engineering Platforms for Sustainable Industrial Feedstock Production.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Li-Hua; Krens, Frans; Smith, Mark A; Li, Xueyuan; Qi, Weicong; van Loo, Eibertus N; Iven, Tim; Feussner, Ivo; Nazarenus, Tara J; Huai, Dongxin; Taylor, David C; Zhou, Xue-Rong; Green, Allan G; Shockey, Jay; Klasson, K Thomas; Mullen, Robert T; Huang, Bangquan; Dyer, John M; Cahoon, Edgar B

    2016-01-01

    Feedstocks for industrial applications ranging from polymers to lubricants are largely derived from petroleum, a non-renewable resource. Vegetable oils with fatty acid structures and storage forms tailored for specific industrial uses offer renewable and potentially sustainable sources of petrochemical-type functionalities. A wide array of industrial vegetable oils can be generated through biotechnology, but will likely require non-commodity oilseed platforms dedicated to specialty oil production for commercial acceptance. Here we show the feasibility of three Brassicaceae oilseeds crambe, camelina, and carinata, none of which are widely cultivated for food use, as hosts for complex metabolic engineering of wax esters for lubricant applications. Lines producing wax esters >20% of total seed oil were generated for each crop and further improved for high temperature oxidative stability by down-regulation of fatty acid polyunsaturation. Field cultivation of optimized wax ester-producing crambe demonstrated commercial utility of these engineered crops and a path for sustainable production of other industrial oils in dedicated specialty oilseeds. PMID:26916792

  4. Iron control in west Texas sour-gas wells provides sustained production increases

    SciTech Connect

    Walker, M.L.; Dill, W.R.; Besler, M.R.; McFatridge, D.G. )

    1991-05-01

    Permian Basin operators have recorded sustained production increases in oil wells by preventing precipitation of iron sulfide and other sulfur-containing species. This improvement has resulted largely from cleaning out tubing before acidizing and from preventing the precipitation of ferrous sulfide and the formation of elemental sulfur by simultaneous use of iron chelants and sulfide-control agents. Previously used methods gave only temporary production increases that terminated when iron dissolved by the stimulation acid reprecipitated in the pay zone and damage the formation after the stimulation acid was spent. This paper describes a method to optimize iron sulfide control, methods to minimize reprecipitation, and case histories from the Permian Basin that show improved methods to control iron in sour-well environments.

  5. Fuelling the future: microbial engineering for the production of sustainable biofuels.

    PubMed

    Liao, James C; Mi, Luo; Pontrelli, Sammy; Luo, Shanshan

    2016-04-01

    Global climate change linked to the accumulation of greenhouse gases has caused concerns regarding the use of fossil fuels as the major energy source. To mitigate climate change while keeping energy supply sustainable, one solution is to rely on the ability of microorganisms to use renewable resources for biofuel synthesis. In this Review, we discuss how microorganisms can be explored for the production of next-generation biofuels, based on the ability of bacteria and fungi to use lignocellulose; through direct CO2 conversion by microalgae; using lithoautotrophs driven by solar electricity; or through the capacity of microorganisms to use methane generated from landfill. Furthermore, we discuss how to direct these substrates to the biosynthetic pathways of various fuel compounds and how to optimize biofuel production by engineering fuel pathways and central metabolism. PMID:27026253

  6. Sustainable sheep production and consumer preference trends: compatibilities, contradictions, and unresolved dilemmas.

    PubMed

    Montossi, F; Font-i-Furnols, M; del Campo, M; San Julián, R; Brito, G; Sañudo, C

    2013-12-01

    There are increasing concerns of society towards the consumption of animal products which have been produced and transformed in a sustainable manner. This trend influences consumer purchasing decision making, particularly in developed countries. On the other hand, in the next years, the pressure to increase the volume and efficiency of meat production will be much higher to cope with the expected unsatisfied demand. At least in part, current and future technologies could contribute to solve this challenge. However, the use of some of these innovations could have a negative effect on consumer preferences. There is no consensus in our society about this dilemma. The objective of this paper is to review the scientific evidence related to these topics and to analyze and discuss the effect of some of the extrinsic and intrinsic factors linked with the sheep industry which could affect the acceptability of lamb meat by consumers. PMID:23769133

  7. Fuelling the future: microbial engineering for the production of sustainable biofuels.

    PubMed

    Liao, James C; Mi, Luo; Pontrelli, Sammy; Luo, Shanshan

    2016-04-01

    Global climate change linked to the accumulation of greenhouse gases has caused concerns regarding the use of fossil fuels as the major energy source. To mitigate climate change while keeping energy supply sustainable, one solution is to rely on the ability of microorganisms to use renewable resources for biofuel synthesis. In this Review, we discuss how microorganisms can be explored for the production of next-generation biofuels, based on the ability of bacteria and fungi to use lignocellulose; through direct CO2 conversion by microalgae; using lithoautotrophs driven by solar electricity; or through the capacity of microorganisms to use methane generated from landfill. Furthermore, we discuss how to direct these substrates to the biosynthetic pathways of various fuel compounds and how to optimize biofuel production by engineering fuel pathways and central metabolism.

  8. Sustainable sheep production and consumer preference trends: compatibilities, contradictions, and unresolved dilemmas.

    PubMed

    Montossi, F; Font-i-Furnols, M; del Campo, M; San Julián, R; Brito, G; Sañudo, C

    2013-12-01

    There are increasing concerns of society towards the consumption of animal products which have been produced and transformed in a sustainable manner. This trend influences consumer purchasing decision making, particularly in developed countries. On the other hand, in the next years, the pressure to increase the volume and efficiency of meat production will be much higher to cope with the expected unsatisfied demand. At least in part, current and future technologies could contribute to solve this challenge. However, the use of some of these innovations could have a negative effect on consumer preferences. There is no consensus in our society about this dilemma. The objective of this paper is to review the scientific evidence related to these topics and to analyze and discuss the effect of some of the extrinsic and intrinsic factors linked with the sheep industry which could affect the acceptability of lamb meat by consumers.

  9. Towards a sustainable livestock production in developing countries and the importance of animal health strategy therein.

    PubMed

    Kaasschieter, G A; de Jong, R; Schiere, J B; Zwart, D

    1992-04-01

    Livestock and animal health development projects have not always led to substantial increases in animal productivity or in farmers' welfare. Some have even resulted in unsustainable systems, when they were not based on an understanding of (livestock) production systems. The multipurpose functions of livestock and complex relationships between the biological, technical and social components require a systems approach, whereby nutrition, animal health, breeding, biotechnology knowhow, inputs and technologies are used to optimise resource use. The challenge for developed and developing countries is to reverse the current degradation of the environment, and arrive at sustainable increases in crop and livestock production to secure present and future food supplies. For rural development, governments should show long term commitment and political will to support the rural population in development programmes, because smallholders (including women and landless livestock keepers) represent a large labour force in developing countries. Different systems need different approaches. Pastoral systems must focus on effective management of grazing pressure of the rangelands. Communal rangelands management involves not only the development and application of technologies (e.g. feedlots, vaccination campaigns), but also land tenure policies, institutional development, economic return and a reduction in the number of people depending upon livestock. Smallholder mixed farms must aim at intensification of the total production system, in which external inputs are indispensable, but with the emphasis on optimum input-output relationships by reducing resource losses due to poor management. Resource-poor farming systems must aim at the improved management of the various livestock species in backyards and very small farms, and proper packages for cattle, buffaloes, sheep, goats, rabbits and poultry should be developed. Specialised commercial livestock farming systems (poultry, pigs, dairy

  10. Synthetic nitrogen fertilizers deplete soil nitrogen: a global dilemma for sustainable cereal production.

    PubMed

    Mulvaney, R L; Khan, S A; Ellsworth, T R

    2009-01-01

    Cereal production that now sustains a world population of more than 6.5 billion has tripled during the past 40 yr, concurrent with an increase from 12 to 104 Tg yr(-1) of synthetic N applied largely in ammoniacal fertilizers. These fertilizers have been managed as a cost-effective form of insurance against low yields, without regard to the inherent effect of mineral N in promoting microbial C utilization. Such an effect is consistent with a net loss of soil organic C recently observed for the Morrow Plots, America's oldest experiment field, after 40 to 50 yr of synthetic N fertilization that substantially exceeded grain N removal. A similar decline in total soil N is reported herein for the same site and would be expected from the predominantly organic occurrence of soil N. This decline is in agreement with numerous long-term baseline data sets from chemical-based cropping systems involving a wide variety of soils, geographic regions, and tillage practices. The loss of organic N decreases soil productivity and the agronomic efficiency (kg grain kg(-1) N) of fertilizer N and has been implicated in widespread reports of yield stagnation or even decline for grain production in Asia. A major global evaluation of current cereal production systems should be undertaken, with a view toward using scientific and technological advances to increase input efficiencies. As one aspect of this strategy, the input of ammoniacal N should be more accurately matched to crop N requirement. Long-term sustainability may require agricultural diversification involving a gradual transition from intensive synthetic N inputs to legume-based crop rotations.

  11. Making better maize plants for sustainable grain production in a changing climate

    PubMed Central

    Gong, Fangping; Wu, Xiaolin; Zhang, Huiyong; Chen, Yanhui; Wang, Wei

    2015-01-01

    Achieving grain supply security with limited arable land is a major challenge in the twenty-first century, owing to the changing climate and increasing global population. Maize plays an increasingly vital role in global grain production. As a C4 plant, maize has a high yield potential. Maize is predicted to become the number one cereal in the world by 2020. However, maize production has plateaued in many countries, and hybrid and production technologies have been fully exploited. Thus, there is an urgent need to shape maize traits and architectures for increased stress tolerance and higher yield in a changing climate. Recent achievements in genomics, proteomics, and metabolomics have provided an unprecedented opportunity to make better maize. In this paper, we discuss the current challenges and potential of maize production, particularly in China. We also highlight the need for enhancing maize tolerance to drought and heat waves, summarize the elite shoot and root traits and phenotypes, and propose an ideotype for sustainable maize production in a changing climate. This will facilitate targeted maize improvement through a conventional breeding program combined with molecular techniques. PMID:26500671

  12. Knowledge and tools to enhance resilience of beef grazing systems for sustainable animal protein production.

    PubMed

    Steiner, Jean L; Engle, David M; Xiao, Xiangming; Saleh, Ali; Tomlinson, Peter; Rice, Charles W; Cole, N Andy; Coleman, Samuel W; Osei, Edward; Basara, Jeffrey; Middendorf, Gerad; Gowda, Prasanna; Todd, Richard; Moffet, Corey; Anandhi, Aavudai; Starks, Patrick J; Ocshner, Tyson; Reuter, Ryan; Devlin, Daniel

    2014-11-01

    Ruminant livestock provides meat and dairy products that sustain health and livelihood for much of the world's population. Grazing lands that support ruminant livestock provide numerous ecosystem services, including provision of food, water, and genetic resources; climate and water regulation; support of soil formation; nutrient cycling; and cultural services. In the U.S. southern Great Plains, beef production on pastures, rangelands, and hay is a major economic activity. The region's climate is characterized by extremes of heat and cold and extremes of drought and flooding. Grazing lands occupy a large portion of the region's land, significantly affecting carbon, nitrogen, and water budgets. To understand vulnerabilities and enhance resilience of beef production, a multi-institutional Coordinated Agricultural Project (CAP), the "grazing CAP," was established. Integrative research and extension spanning biophysical, socioeconomic, and agricultural disciplines address management effects on productivity and environmental footprints of production systems. Knowledge and tools being developed will allow farmers and ranchers to evaluate risks and increase resilience to dynamic conditions. The knowledge and tools developed will also have relevance to grazing lands in semiarid and subhumid regions of the world. PMID:25376887

  13. Interactions of woody biofuel feedstock production systems with water resources: Considerations for sustainability.

    SciTech Connect

    Trettin, Carl,C.; Amatya, Devendra; Coleman, Mark.

    2008-07-01

    Abstract. Water resources are important for the production of woody biofuel feedstocks. It is necessary to ensure that production systems do not adversely affect the quantity or quality of surface and ground water. The effects of woody biomass plantations on water resources are largely dependent on the prior land use and the management regime. Experience from both irrigated and non-irrigated systems has demonstrated that woody biofuel production systems do not impair water quality. Water quality actually improves from conversion of idle or degraded agricultural lands to woody biomass plantations. Site water balance may be altered by cultivation of woody biomass plantations relative to agricultural use, due to increases in evapostranspiration (ET) and storage. Incorporation of woody biomass production plantations within the landscape provides an opportunity to improve the quality of runoff water and soil conservation. Given the centrality of water resources to the sustainability of ecosystem services and other values derived, the experience with woody biofuels feedstock production systems is positive. Keywords. Short rotation woody crop, forest hydrology, water quality, hardwood plantation.

  14. Knowledge and tools to enhance resilience of beef grazing systems for sustainable animal protein production.

    PubMed

    Steiner, Jean L; Engle, David M; Xiao, Xiangming; Saleh, Ali; Tomlinson, Peter; Rice, Charles W; Cole, N Andy; Coleman, Samuel W; Osei, Edward; Basara, Jeffrey; Middendorf, Gerad; Gowda, Prasanna; Todd, Richard; Moffet, Corey; Anandhi, Aavudai; Starks, Patrick J; Ocshner, Tyson; Reuter, Ryan; Devlin, Daniel

    2014-11-01

    Ruminant livestock provides meat and dairy products that sustain health and livelihood for much of the world's population. Grazing lands that support ruminant livestock provide numerous ecosystem services, including provision of food, water, and genetic resources; climate and water regulation; support of soil formation; nutrient cycling; and cultural services. In the U.S. southern Great Plains, beef production on pastures, rangelands, and hay is a major economic activity. The region's climate is characterized by extremes of heat and cold and extremes of drought and flooding. Grazing lands occupy a large portion of the region's land, significantly affecting carbon, nitrogen, and water budgets. To understand vulnerabilities and enhance resilience of beef production, a multi-institutional Coordinated Agricultural Project (CAP), the "grazing CAP," was established. Integrative research and extension spanning biophysical, socioeconomic, and agricultural disciplines address management effects on productivity and environmental footprints of production systems. Knowledge and tools being developed will allow farmers and ranchers to evaluate risks and increase resilience to dynamic conditions. The knowledge and tools developed will also have relevance to grazing lands in semiarid and subhumid regions of the world.

  15. Progress toward evaluating the sustainability of switchgrass production as a bioenergy crop using the SWAT model

    SciTech Connect

    Baskaran, Latha Malar; Jager, Yetta; Schweizer, Peter E; Srinivasan, Raghavan

    2010-01-01

    Adding bioenergy to the US energy portfolio requires long-term profitability for bioenergy producers and the long-term protection of affected ecosystems. In this study, we present steps along the path towards evaluating both sides of the sustainability equation (production and environmental) for switchgrass (Panicum virgatum) using the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT). We modeled production of switchgrass and river flow using SWAT for current landscapes at a regional scale. To quantify feedstock production, we compared lowland switchgrass yields simulated by SWAT with estimates from a model based on empirical data for the eastern US. Geographic patterns were very similar. Average yields reported in field trials tended to be higher than average SWAT-predicted yields, which may nevertheless be more representative of production-scale yields. As a preliminary step toward quantifying bioenergy-related changes in water quality, we evaluated flow predictions by the SWAT model for the Arkansas-Red-White river basin. Monthly SWAT flow predictions were compared to USGS measurements from 86 subbasins across the region. Although agreement was good, analysis of residuals (functional validation) identified patterns to guide future improvements. Our next step will be to continue model improvement, after which we will forecast changes in water quality associated with incorporating bioenergy crops into future landscapes. This analysis will help us, in future, to identify areas with the highest economic and environmental potential for feedstock production.

  16. Study of the Assessment Method for N Excretion in Sustainable Heavy Pigs Production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Kaijun; Liu, Fenghua; Xu, Xiaolong; Xu, Jianqin; Zoccarato, Ivo

    Italian heavy pigs, with an average slaughtering body weight of 150-170 kg, are world-wide famous for its Parma ham production. Because the requirement of market diversity, producers are interested in ham production following the procedure of Italian pork industry. However, with ever growing public concern about nitrogen (N) pollution in the environment, it is necessary to determine a suitable method to measure N excretion from heavy pig production. The N retention was calculated by factorial method and compared with estimations of other methods available in literature. The results showed that the N percentage of heavy pigs is 2.43% ± 0.07% on body weight basis and the percentage of N excretion was approximately 69.62% ± 0.20 of N intake. Regarding the N excretion of estimation methods, the proposal of Xiccato et al. was closer to reality of the heavy pig production than other methods and could be used as a standard way to calculate the N excretion. Besides the overall standard, it is opportune to make a N balance sheet for every individual farm under specific conditions. Only in this way, the farmers can realize their deficiencies and will voluntarily follow the Good Management Practice (GMP) indications so as to guarantee a sustainable development of pig production.

  17. Targeting the production of oncogenic microRNAs with multimodal synthetic small molecules.

    PubMed

    Vo, Duc Duy; Staedel, Cathy; Zehnacker, Laura; Benhida, Rachid; Darfeuille, Fabien; Duca, Maria

    2014-03-21

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a recently discovered category of small RNA molecules that regulate gene expression at the post-transcriptional level. Accumulating evidence indicates that miRNAs are aberrantly expressed in a variety of human cancers and revealed to be oncogenic and to play a pivotal role in initiation and progression of these pathologies. It is now clear that the inhibition of oncogenic miRNAs, defined as blocking their biosynthesis or their function, could find an application in the therapy of different types of cancer in which these miRNAs are implicated. Here we report the design, synthesis, and biological evaluation of new small-molecule RNA ligands targeting the production of oncogenic microRNAs. In this work we focused our attention on miR-372 and miR-373 that are implicated in the tumorigenesis of different types of cancer such as gastric cancer. These two oncogenic miRNAs are overexpressed in gastric cancer cells starting from their precursors pre-miR-372 and pre-miR-373, two stem-loop structured RNAs that lead to mature miRNAs after cleavage by the enzyme Dicer. The small molecules described herein consist of the conjugation of two RNA binding motives, i.e., the aminoglycoside neomycin and different natural and artificial nucleobases, in order to obtain RNA ligands with increased affinity and selectivity compared to that of parent compounds. After the synthesis of this new series of RNA ligands, we demonstrated that they are able to inhibit the production of the oncogenic miRNA-372 and -373 by binding their pre-miRNAs and inhibiting the processing by Dicer. Moreover, we proved that some of these compounds bear anti-proliferative activity toward gastric cancer cells and that this activity is likely linked to a decrease in the production of targeted miRNAs. To date, only few examples of small molecules targeting oncogenic miRNAs have been reported, and such inhibitors could be extremely useful for the development of new anticancer therapeutic

  18. Making Friends with the Sustainable Livelihoods Framework.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hinshelwood, Emily

    2003-01-01

    A renewable energy project in South Wales was enriched by elements of the sustainable livelihood approach: people centered, holistic, and dynamic. The approach shifted the focus from technology to people and from product to process; it combined micro and macro issues. (SK)

  19. Implementation of Sustainable Soil Management Practices to Improve Crop Production in the Different Ethiopian Agro Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    García Moreno, R.; Gameda, S.; Diaz Alvarez, M. C.; Selasie, Y. G.

    2012-04-01

    Agriculture in Ethiopia is one of first priority since close to 10 In this context, the Ethiopian crop production faces to the following soil management challenges: lack of updated soil data, macro and micro nutrient depletion, acidity, salinity and soil surface erosion and crusting. One of the biggest issues is the loss of arable land, above 137 T/yr, reaching during some particularly dried periods until 300 T/yr. In this context, the authors constituted a working group of experts from Spanish and Ethiopian universities, local producers and international and governmental organisms to analyse the problems related to the different agro ecological zones found in Ethiopia and the management practices of different local producers. The study produced the trends to implement in the different areas to improve soil management practices in order to contribute to increase the crop production mainly to achieve food security problems. The analyse produced different working fields for the next years for addressing soil degradation, improving land resources management practices, increasing agricultural productivity, updating the available soil data, developing an international program of education, transferring of knowledge from similar study cases and implementing economical tools to help producers to assure income after severe edapho-climatic events. The practical work and the projects developed for the next period is addressed to smallholder farms belonging to the different 34 agro ecological zones identified in Ethiopia, each of them with very specific environmental, cultural and soil management practices.

  20. Agriculture in Africa: strategies to improve and sustain smallholder production systems.

    PubMed

    Jama, Bashir; Pizarro, Gonzalo

    2008-01-01

    Agricultural development lies at the heart of poverty reduction and increased food security of most developing nations. Sub-Saharan Africa (hereafter referred to as Africa) is, however, the only region in the world where per capita agricultural productivity has remained stagnant over the past 40 years. In Asia and Latin America, the use of tailored techniques and technologies has transformed agricultural practice and its productivity, leading to what has been called the "green revolution." The dissemination of uniquely African green revolution technologies has not occurred on the continent. This chapter will argue that the same results in increased productivity and food security can be achieved in Africa if the appropriate investments are made in key interventions: soil fertility improvement, improved seeds, water management, market access, extension services, access to credit, and improvements in weather forecasting. Where these have happened, even partially, the outcome has been remarkable. However, bringing them to scale in ways that sustainably increase agricultural productivity and alleviate poverty requires increased investments and innovative institutional arrangements. Fortunately, several research and development projects on the continent, including the Millennium Villages Project, are providing valuable insights. Finally, this chapter outlines the key remaining challenges.

  1. Target Cultivation and Financing Parameters for Sustainable Production of Fuel and Feed from Microalgae.

    PubMed

    Gerber, Léda N; Tester, Jefferson W; Beal, Colin M; Huntley, Mark E; Sills, Deborah L

    2016-04-01

    Production of economically competitive and environmentally sustainable algal biofuel faces technical challenges that are subject to high uncertainties. Here we identify target values for algal productivity and financing conditions required to achieve a biocrude selling price of $5 per gallon and beneficial environmental impacts. A modeling framework--combining process design, techno-economic analysis, life cycle assessment, and uncertainty analysis--was applied to two conversion pathways: (1) "fuel only (HTL)", using hydrothermal liquefaction to produce biocrude, heat and power, and (2) "fuel and feed", using wet extraction to produce biocrude and lipid-extracted algae, which can substitute components of animal and aqua feeds. Our results suggest that with supporting policy incentives, the "fuel and feed" scenario will likely achieve a biocrude selling price of less than $5 per gallon at a productivity of 39 g/m(2)/day, versus 47 g/m(2)/day for the "fuel only (HTL)" scenario. Furthermore, if lipid-extracted algae are used to substitute fishmeal, the process has a 50% probability of reaching $5 per gallon with a base case productivity of 23 g/m(2)/day. Scenarios with improved economics were associated with beneficial environmental impacts for climate change, ecosystem quality, and resource depletion, but not for human health. PMID:26942694

  2. Target Cultivation and Financing Parameters for Sustainable Production of Fuel and Feed from Microalgae.

    PubMed

    Gerber, Léda N; Tester, Jefferson W; Beal, Colin M; Huntley, Mark E; Sills, Deborah L

    2016-04-01

    Production of economically competitive and environmentally sustainable algal biofuel faces technical challenges that are subject to high uncertainties. Here we identify target values for algal productivity and financing conditions required to achieve a biocrude selling price of $5 per gallon and beneficial environmental impacts. A modeling framework--combining process design, techno-economic analysis, life cycle assessment, and uncertainty analysis--was applied to two conversion pathways: (1) "fuel only (HTL)", using hydrothermal liquefaction to produce biocrude, heat and power, and (2) "fuel and feed", using wet extraction to produce biocrude and lipid-extracted algae, which can substitute components of animal and aqua feeds. Our results suggest that with supporting policy incentives, the "fuel and feed" scenario will likely achieve a biocrude selling price of less than $5 per gallon at a productivity of 39 g/m(2)/day, versus 47 g/m(2)/day for the "fuel only (HTL)" scenario. Furthermore, if lipid-extracted algae are used to substitute fishmeal, the process has a 50% probability of reaching $5 per gallon with a base case productivity of 23 g/m(2)/day. Scenarios with improved economics were associated with beneficial environmental impacts for climate change, ecosystem quality, and resource depletion, but not for human health.

  3. Product Lifecycle Management and the Quest for Sustainable Space Exploration Solutions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Caruso, Pamela W.; Dumbacher, Daniel L.; Grieves, Michael

    2011-01-01

    Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) is an outcome of lean thinking to eliminate waste and increase productivity. PLM is inextricably tied to the systems engineering business philosophy, coupled with a methodology by which personnel, processes and practices, and information technology combine to form an architecture platform for product design, development, manufacturing, operations, and decommissioning. In this model, which is being implemented by the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) Engineering Directorate, total lifecycle costs are important variables for critical decision-making. With the ultimate goal to deliver quality products that meet or exceed requirements on time and within budget, PLM is a powerful concept to shape everything from engineering trade studies and testing goals, to integrated vehicle operations and retirement scenarios. This briefing will demonstrate how the MSFC Engineering Directorate is implementing PLM as part of an overall strategy to deliver safe, reliable, and affordable space exploration solutions and how that strategy aligns with the Agency and Center systems engineering policies and processes. Sustainable space exploration solutions demand that all lifecycle phases be optimized, and engineering the next generation space transportation system requires a paradigm shift such that digital tools and knowledge management, which are central elements of PLM, are used consistently to maximum effect. Adopting PLM, which has been used by the aerospace and automotive industry for many years, for spacecraft applications provides a foundation for strong, disciplined systems engineering and accountable return on investment. PLM enables better solutions using fewer resources by making lifecycle considerations in an integrative decision-making process.

  4. Geodecision system for traceability and sustainable production of beef cattle in Brazil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Victoria, D. D.; Andrade, R. G.; Bolfe, L.; Batistella, M.; Pires, P. P.; Vicente, L. E.; Visoli, M. C.

    2011-12-01

    Beef cattle production sustainability depends on incorporating innovative tools and technologies which are easy to comprehend, economically viable, and spatially explicit into the registration of precise, reliable data about production practices. This research developed from the needs and demands of food safety and food quality in extensive beef cattle production within the scope of the policies of Southern Cone and European Union's countries. Initially, the OTAG project (Operational Management and Geodecisional Prototype to Track and Trace Agricultural Production) focused on the development of a prototype traceability of cattle. The aim for the project's next phase is to enhance the electronic devices used in the identification and positioning of the animals, and the incorporation of more management and sanitary information. Besides, we intend to structure a database that enables the inclusion of greater amount of geospatial information linked to environmental aspects, such as water deficit, vegetation vigour, degradation indices of pasture areas, among others. For the extraction of knowledge, and the presentation of the results, we propose the development of a friendly interface to facilitate the exploration of the textual, tabular and geospatial information useful for the user.

  5. Continuous flow micro-bioreactors for the production of biopharmaceuticals: the effect of geometry, surface texture, and flow rate.

    PubMed

    Garza-García, Lucía D; García-López, Erika; Camacho-León, Sergio; Del Refugio Rocha-Pizaña, María; López-Pacheco, Felipe; López-Meza, Julián; Araiz-Hernández, Diana; Tapia-Mejía, Eduardo J; Trujillo-de Santiago, Grissel; Rodríguez-González, Ciro A; Alvarez, Mario Moisés

    2014-04-01

    We used continuous flow micro-devices as bioreactors for the production of a glycosylated pharmaceutical product (a monoclonal antibody). We cultured CHO cells on the surface of PMMA/PDMS micro-channels that had been textured by micromachining and coated with fibronectin. Three different micro-channel geometries (a wavy channel, a zigzag channel, and a series of donut-shape reservoirs) were tested in a continuous flow regime in the range of 3 to 6 μL min(-1). Both the geometry of the micro-device and the flow rate had a significant effect on cell adhesion, cell proliferation, and monoclonal antibody production. The most efficient configuration was a series of donut-shaped reservoirs, which yielded mAb concentrations of 7.2 mg L(-1) at residence times lower than one minute and steady-state productivities above 9 mg mL(-1) min(-1). These rates are at about 3 orders of magnitude higher than those observed in suspended-cell stirred tank fed-batch bioreactors.

  6. Farmers' Perception of Integrated Soil Fertility and Nutrient Management for Sustainable Crop Production: A Study of Rural Areas in Bangladesh

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Farouque, Md. Golam; Takeya, Hiroyuki

    2007-01-01

    This study aimed to determine farmers' perception of integrated soil fertility and nutrient management for sustainable crop production. Integrated soil fertility (ISF) and nutrient management (NM) is an advanced approach to maintain soil fertility and to enhance crop productivity. A total number of 120 farmers from eight villages in four districts…

  7. SYNBIOCHEM-a SynBio foundry for the biosynthesis and sustainable production of fine and speciality chemicals.

    PubMed

    Carbonell, Pablo; Currin, Andrew; Dunstan, Mark; Fellows, Donal; Jervis, Adrian; Rattray, Nicholas J W; Robinson, Christopher J; Swainston, Neil; Vinaixa, Maria; Williams, Alan; Yan, Cunyu; Barran, Perdita; Breitling, Rainer; Chen, George Guo-Qiang; Faulon, Jean-Loup; Goble, Carole; Goodacre, Royston; Kell, Douglas B; Feuvre, Rosalind Le; Micklefield, Jason; Scrutton, Nigel S; Shapira, Philip; Takano, Eriko; Turner, Nicholas J

    2016-06-15

    The Manchester Synthetic Biology Research Centre (SYNBIOCHEM) is a foundry for the biosynthesis and sustainable production of fine and speciality chemicals. The Centre's integrated technology platforms provide a unique capability to facilitate predictable engineering of microbial bio-factories for chemicals production. An overview of these capabilities is described.

  8. SYNBIOCHEM-a SynBio foundry for the biosynthesis and sustainable production of fine and speciality chemicals.

    PubMed

    Carbonell, Pablo; Currin, Andrew; Dunstan, Mark; Fellows, Donal; Jervis, Adrian; Rattray, Nicholas J W; Robinson, Christopher J; Swainston, Neil; Vinaixa, Maria; Williams, Alan; Yan, Cunyu; Barran, Perdita; Breitling, Rainer; Chen, George Guo-Qiang; Faulon, Jean-Loup; Goble, Carole; Goodacre, Royston; Kell, Douglas B; Feuvre, Rosalind Le; Micklefield, Jason; Scrutton, Nigel S; Shapira, Philip; Takano, Eriko; Turner, Nicholas J

    2016-06-15

    The Manchester Synthetic Biology Research Centre (SYNBIOCHEM) is a foundry for the biosynthesis and sustainable production of fine and speciality chemicals. The Centre's integrated technology platforms provide a unique capability to facilitate predictable engineering of microbial bio-factories for chemicals production. An overview of these capabilities is described. PMID:27284023

  9. SYNBIOCHEM–a SynBio foundry for the biosynthesis and sustainable production of fine and speciality chemicals

    PubMed Central

    Carbonell, Pablo; Currin, Andrew; Dunstan, Mark; Fellows, Donal; Jervis, Adrian; Rattray, Nicholas J.W.; Robinson, Christopher J.; Swainston, Neil; Vinaixa, Maria; Williams, Alan; Yan, Cunyu; Barran, Perdita; Breitling, Rainer; Chen, George Guo-Qiang; Faulon, Jean-Loup; Goble, Carole; Goodacre, Royston; Kell, Douglas B.; Feuvre, Rosalind Le; Micklefield, Jason; Scrutton, Nigel S.; Shapira, Philip; Takano, Eriko; Turner, Nicholas J.

    2016-01-01

    The Manchester Synthetic Biology Research Centre (SYNBIOCHEM) is a foundry for the biosynthesis and sustainable production of fine and speciality chemicals. The Centre's integrated technology platforms provide a unique capability to facilitate predictable engineering of microbial bio-factories for chemicals production. An overview of these capabilities is described. PMID:27284023

  10. Effect of parity on productivity and sustainability of Lotka-Volterra food chains: bounded orbits in food chains.

    PubMed

    Massarelli, Nicole; Hoffman, Kathleen; Previte, Joseph P

    2014-12-01

    Hairston, Slobodkin, and Smith conjectured that top down forces act on food chains, which opposed the previously accepted theory that bottom up forces exclusively dictate the dynamics of populations. We model food chains using the Lotka-Volterra predation model and derive sustainability constants which determine which species will persist or go extinct. Further, we show that the productivity of a sustainable food chain with even trophic levels is predator regulated, or top down, while a sustainable food chain with odd trophic levels is resource limited, which is bottom up, which is consistent with current ecological theory.

  11. Effect of parity on productivity and sustainability of Lotka-Volterra food chains: bounded orbits in food chains.

    PubMed

    Massarelli, Nicole; Hoffman, Kathleen; Previte, Joseph P

    2014-12-01

    Hairston, Slobodkin, and Smith conjectured that top down forces act on food chains, which opposed the previously accepted theory that bottom up forces exclusively dictate the dynamics of populations. We model food chains using the Lotka-Volterra predation model and derive sustainability constants which determine which species will persist or go extinct. Further, we show that the productivity of a sustainable food chain with even trophic levels is predator regulated, or top down, while a sustainable food chain with odd trophic levels is resource limited, which is bottom up, which is consistent with current ecological theory. PMID:24362648

  12. Improved specific productivity in cephalexin synthesis by immobilized PGA in silica magnetic micro-particles.

    PubMed

    Bernardino, Susana M S A; Fernandes, Pedro; Fonseca, Luís P

    2010-12-01

    There is a marked trend in pharmaceutical industry towards the replacement of classical organic methods by "green" alternatives that minimize or eliminate the generation of waste and avoid, where possible, the use of toxic and/or hazardous reagents and solvents. In this work the kinetically controlled synthesis of cephalexin by soluble and penicillin G acylase immobilized in sol-gel micro-particles with magnetic properties was performed in aqueous media with PGME and 7-ADCA as substrates, at different concentrations of substrate, temperature, pH, enzyme to substrate ratio and acyl donor to nucleophile ratio. Excess acyl donor had a strong effect on cephalexin productivity. A PGME/7-ADCA ratio of 3 was considered optimum. A maximum specific productivity of 5.9 mmol h(-1), gbiocatalyst(-1) at 160 mM 7-ADCA, 480 mM PGME and low enzyme to substrate ratio at 32.5 U mmol(-1) 7-ADCA was obtained with immobilized PGA in full aqueous medium, suggesting that diffusional limitations were minimized when compared with other commercial biocatalysts. A half-life of 133 h for the immobilized biocatalyst was estimated during cephalexin synthesis in the presence of 100 mM 7-ADCA and 300 mM PGME, in 50 mM Tris/HCl at pH 7.2 and 14°C. These results compare quite favorably with those previously reported for the kinetically controlled synthesis of cephalexin. PMID:20632377

  13. Acetic acid production from food wastes using yeast and acetic acid bacteria micro-aerobic fermentation.

    PubMed

    Li, Yang; He, Dongwei; Niu, Dongjie; Zhao, Youcai

    2015-05-01

    In this study, yeast and acetic acid bacteria strains were adopted to enhance the ethanol-type fermentation resulting to a volatile fatty acids yield of 30.22 g/L, and improve acetic acid production to 25.88 g/L, with food wastes as substrate. In contrast, only 12.81 g/L acetic acid can be obtained in the absence of strains. The parameters such as pH, oxidation reduction potential and volatile fatty acids were tested and the microbial diversity of different strains and activity of hydrolytic ferment were investigated to reveal the mechanism. The optimum pH and oxidation reduction potential for the acetic acid production were determined to be at 3.0-3.5 and -500 mV, respectively. Yeast can convert organic matters into ethanol, which is used by acetic acid bacteria to convert the organic wastes into acetic acid. The acetic acid thus obtained from food wastes micro-aerobic fermentation liquid could be extracted by distillation to get high-pure acetic acid.

  14. Improved specific productivity in cephalexin synthesis by immobilized PGA in silica magnetic micro-particles.

    PubMed

    Bernardino, Susana M S A; Fernandes, Pedro; Fonseca, Luís P

    2010-12-01

    There is a marked trend in pharmaceutical industry towards the replacement of classical organic methods by "green" alternatives that minimize or eliminate the generation of waste and avoid, where possible, the use of toxic and/or hazardous reagents and solvents. In this work the kinetically controlled synthesis of cephalexin by soluble and penicillin G acylase immobilized in sol-gel micro-particles with magnetic properties was performed in aqueous media with PGME and 7-ADCA as substrates, at different concentrations of substrate, temperature, pH, enzyme to substrate ratio and acyl donor to nucleophile ratio. Excess acyl donor had a strong effect on cephalexin productivity. A PGME/7-ADCA ratio of 3 was considered optimum. A maximum specific productivity of 5.9 mmol h(-1), gbiocatalyst(-1) at 160 mM 7-ADCA, 480 mM PGME and low enzyme to substrate ratio at 32.5 U mmol(-1) 7-ADCA was obtained with immobilized PGA in full aqueous medium, suggesting that diffusional limitations were minimized when compared with other commercial biocatalysts. A half-life of 133 h for the immobilized biocatalyst was estimated during cephalexin synthesis in the presence of 100 mM 7-ADCA and 300 mM PGME, in 50 mM Tris/HCl at pH 7.2 and 14°C. These results compare quite favorably with those previously reported for the kinetically controlled synthesis of cephalexin.

  15. Sacrificial component fabrication for optimised production of micro-vascular polymer composite

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dalton, B.; Dixon, D.; McIlhagger, A.; Archer, E.

    2015-02-01

    Smart functional materials are a viable future goal for advanced applications in aerospace, space and medical applications. In this work micro-vascular polymer composite systems have been developed using sacrificial fibres produced from catalyst loaded Poly(lactic acid). The sacrificial fibres have been produced via a published technique which treated PLA in a solvent catalyst mixture of 60% Trifluoroethanol, 40% H2O dispersed with 10 wt% tin (II) oxalate catalyst. A second process of polymer extrusion of PLA using graded fill contents of tin (II) oxalate has also been developed for the up scaled production of fibres as an alternative to solution treatment. Thermal analysis (TGA) was used to compare sacrificial fibre specimens. PLA fibres produced via the polymer extrusion method outperformed solution treated fibres displaying a lower degradation onset temperature (average 25°C lower), higher degradation rates (observed through a derivative curve comparison) and lower residual catalyst content (0.67% solvent treated fibre against 0.16% extruded fibre). The continuous extrusion process is solvent free and is suitable for high volume production. This work has been carried out to fully understand the fabrication issues with sacrificial components.

  16. Use of the SWAT model to evaluate the sustainability of bioenergy production at a National scale

    SciTech Connect

    Baskaran, Latha Malar; Jager, Yetta; Schweizer, Peter E; Srinivasan, Raghavan

    2009-01-01

    As the US begins to integrate biomass crops and residues into its mix of energy feedstocks, tools are needed to measure the long-term sustainability of these feedstocks. Two aspects of sustainability are long-term potential for profitably producing energy and protection of ecosystems influenced by energy-related activities. The Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) is an important model used in the efforts to quantify both aspects. To quantify potential feedstock production, they used SWAT to estimate switchgrass yields at a national scale. The results from this analysis produced a map of the potential switchgrass yield along its natural eastern range. To quantify ecological protection, they are using the SWAT model to forecast changes in water quality and fish richness as a result of landscape alterations due to incorporating bioenergy crops. They have implemented the SWAT model in the Arkansas-Red-White region, which drains into the Mississippi River, and they present their methods here. They identified two sub-watersheds for sensitivity analysis and calibration of the water quality results, and then, explored ways to apply the calibration results to the whole region and validate the model setup. They also present an overview of their research in which results from the calibrated regional SWAT model were used to analyze potential changes in fish biodiversity. Only by evaluating the energy and environmental implications of landscape changes can we make informed decisions about bioenergy at the national scale, and the SWAT model will enable us to reach that goal.

  17. Integration of microalgal cultivation system for wastewater remediation and sustainable biomass production.

    PubMed

    Gupta, Prabuddha L; Lee, Seung-Mok; Choi, Hee-Jeong

    2016-08-01

    Untreated wastewaters have been a great concern and can cause major pollution problems for environment. Conventional approaches for treating wastewater involve tremendous capital cost, have major short comings and are not sustainable. Microalgae culture offers an interesting step for wastewater treatment. Microalgae serve the dual purpose of phycoremediation along with the production of potentially valuable biomass, which can be used for several purposes. The ability of microalgae to accumulate nitrogen, phosphorus, heavy metals and other toxic compounds can be integrated with wastewater treatment system to offer an elegant solution towards tertiary and quaternary treatment. The current review explores possible role of microalgal based wastewater treatment and explores the current progress, key challenges, limitations and future prospects with special emphasis on strategies involved in harvesting, boosting biomass and lipid yield. PMID:27357407

  18. Improvement in the yield and quality of kalmegh (Andrographis paniculata Nees) under the sustainable production system.

    PubMed

    Verma, Rajesh Kumar; Verma, Sanjeet K; Pankaj, Umesh; Gupta, Anand K; Khan, Khushboo; Shankar, Karuna

    2015-02-01

    Andrographis paniculata Nees is an annual erect herb with wide medicinal and pharmacological applications due to the presence of andrographolide and other active chemical constituents. The large-scale cultivation of the kalmegh is not in practice. The aim of this study was to establish sustainable production systems of A. paniculata cv CIM-Megha with the application of different bioinoculants and chemical fertilisers. A. paniculata herb and andrographolide yield in the dried leaves was found to be highest (218% and 61.3%, respectively) in treatment T3 (NPK+Bacillus sp.) compared with T1 (control). The soil organic carbon, soil microbial respiration, soil enzymes activity and available nutrients improved significantly with combined application of bioinoculants and chemical fertilisers. PMID:25348874

  19. Engineering oilseeds for sustainable production of industrial and nutritional feedstocks: solving bottlenecks in fatty acid flux.

    PubMed

    Cahoon, Edgar B; Shockey, Jay M; Dietrich, Charles R; Gidda, Satinder K; Mullen, Robert T; Dyer, John M

    2007-06-01

    Oilseeds provide a unique platform for the production of high-value fatty acids that can replace non-sustainable petroleum and oceanic sources of specialty chemicals and aquaculture feed. However, recent efforts to engineer the seeds of crop and model plant species to produce new types of fatty acids, including hydroxy and conjugated fatty acids for industrial uses and long-chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids for farmed fish feed, have met with only modest success. The collective results from these studies point to metabolic 'bottlenecks' in the engineered plant seeds that substantially limit the efficient or selective flux of unusual fatty acids between different substrate pools and ultimately into storage triacylglycerol. Evidence is emerging that diacylglycerol acyltransferase 2, which catalyzes the final step in triacylglycerol assembly, is an important contributor to the synthesis of unusual fatty acid-containing oils, and is likely to be a key target for future oilseed metabolic engineering efforts.

  20. Engineering oilseeds for sustainable production of industrial and nutritional feedstocks: solving bottlenecks in fatty acid flux.

    PubMed

    Cahoon, Edgar B; Shockey, Jay M; Dietrich, Charles R; Gidda, Satinder K; Mullen, Robert T; Dyer, John M

    2007-06-01

    Oilseeds provide a unique platform for the production of high-value fatty acids that can replace non-sustainable petroleum and oceanic sources of specialty chemicals and aquaculture feed. However, recent efforts to engineer the seeds of crop and model plant species to produce new types of fatty acids, including hydroxy and conjugated fatty acids for industrial uses and long-chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids for farmed fish feed, have met with only modest success. The collective results from these studies point to metabolic 'bottlenecks' in the engineered plant seeds that substantially limit the efficient or selective flux of unusual fatty acids between different substrate pools and ultimately into storage triacylglycerol. Evidence is emerging that diacylglycerol acyltransferase 2, which catalyzes the final step in triacylglycerol assembly, is an important contributor to the synthesis of unusual fatty acid-containing oils, and is likely to be a key target for future oilseed metabolic engineering efforts. PMID:17434788

  1. Improvement in the yield and quality of kalmegh (Andrographis paniculata Nees) under the sustainable production system.

    PubMed

    Verma, Rajesh Kumar; Verma, Sanjeet K; Pankaj, Umesh; Gupta, Anand K; Khan, Khushboo; Shankar, Karuna

    2015-02-01

    Andrographis paniculata Nees is an annual erect herb with wide medicinal and pharmacological applications due to the presence of andrographolide and other active chemical constituents. The large-scale cultivation of the kalmegh is not in practice. The aim of this study was to establish sustainable production systems of A. paniculata cv CIM-Megha with the application of different bioinoculants and chemical fertilisers. A. paniculata herb and andrographolide yield in the dried leaves was found to be highest (218% and 61.3%, respectively) in treatment T3 (NPK+Bacillus sp.) compared with T1 (control). The soil organic carbon, soil microbial respiration, soil enzymes activity and available nutrients improved significantly with combined application of bioinoculants and chemical fertilisers.

  2. The Sense-City equipment project: insight into the prototyping and validation of environmental micro- and nanosensors for a sustainable urbanization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lebental, Bérengère; Angelescu, Dan; Bourouina, Tarik; Bourquin, Frédéric; Cojocaru, Costel-Sorin; Derkx, François; Dumoulin, Jean; Ha, Thi-Lan; Robine, Enric; Van Damme, Henri

    2013-04-01

    While today's galloping urbanization weighs heavily on both People and Environment, the massive instrumentation of urban spaces appears a landmark toward sustainability. Collecting massively distributed information requires the use of high-performance communication systems as well as sensors with very small ecological footprint. Because of their high sensitivity, the wide range of their observables, their energetic self-sufficiency and their low cost, micro- and nano- sensors are particularly well suited to urban metrology. A 8 years, 9 M€ equipment project funded by the French "Programme d'Investissement d'Avenir" starting in 2012, the Sense-City project will offer a suite of high-quality facilities for the design, prototyping and performance assessment of micro- and nanosensors devoted to sustainable urbanization. The scientific program of Sense-City is built around four programs, environmental monitoring, structural health monitoring, energy performances monitoring and people health and exposure monitoring. We present the activities of the consortium partners, IFSTTAR, ESIEE-Paris, CSTB, LPICM, and the prospects brought by Sense-City equipment in terms of sensor prototyping, benchmarking and operation validation. We discuss how the various sensors developed by LPICM and ESIEE (for instance conformable chemical and gas microsensors using nanomaterials at LPICM, miniaturized gas chromatographs or microfluidic lab-on-chip for particles analysis at ESIEE-Paris) can be integrated by IFSTTAR into sensors networks tested by IFSTTAR and CSTB in both lab and urban settings. The massively distributed data are interpreted using advanced physical models and inverse methods in order to monitor water, air or soil quality, infrastructure and network safety, building energy performances as well as people health and exposure. We discuss the shortcomings of evaluating the performances of sensors only in lab conditions or directly in real, urban conditions. As a solution, Sense

  3. Green Net Regional Product for the San Luis Basin, Colorado: an economic measure of regional sustainability.

    PubMed

    Heberling, Matthew T; Templeton, Joshua J; Wu, Shanshan

    2012-11-30

    This paper presents the data sources and methodology used to estimate Green Net Regional Product (GNRP), a green accounting approach, for the San Luis Basin (SLB). We measured the movement away from sustainability by examining the change in GNRP over time. Any attempt at green accounting requires both economic and natural capital data. However, limited data for the Basin requires a number of simplifying assumptions and requires transforming economic data at the national, state, and county levels to the level of the SLB. Given the contribution of agribusiness to the SLB, we included the depletion of both groundwater and soil as components in the depreciation of natural capital. We also captured the effect of the consumption of energy on climate change for future generations through carbon dioxide (CO(2)) emissions. In order to estimate the depreciation of natural capital, the shadow price of water for agriculture, the economic damages from soil erosion due to wind, and the social cost of carbon emissions were obtained from the literature and applied to the SLB using benefit transfer. We used Colorado's total factor productivity for agriculture to estimate the value of time (i.e., to include the effects of exogenous technological progress). We aggregated the economic data and the depreciation of natural capital for the SLB from 1980 to 2005. The results suggest that GNRP had a slight upward trend through most of this time period, despite temporary negative trends, the longest of which occurred during the period 1985-86 to 1987-88. However, given the upward trend in GNRP and the possibility of business cycles causing the temporary declines, there is no definitive evidence of moving away from sustainability.

  4. Green Net Regional Product for the San Luis Basin, Colorado: an economic measure of regional sustainability.

    PubMed

    Heberling, Matthew T; Templeton, Joshua J; Wu, Shanshan

    2012-11-30

    This paper presents the data sources and methodology used to estimate Green Net Regional Product (GNRP), a green accounting approach, for the San Luis Basin (SLB). We measured the movement away from sustainability by examining the change in GNRP over time. Any attempt at green accounting requires both economic and natural capital data. However, limited data for the Basin requires a number of simplifying assumptions and requires transforming economic data at the national, state, and county levels to the level of the SLB. Given the contribution of agribusiness to the SLB, we included the depletion of both groundwater and soil as components in the depreciation of natural capital. We also captured the effect of the consumption of energy on climate change for future generations through carbon dioxide (CO(2)) emissions. In order to estimate the depreciation of natural capital, the shadow price of water for agriculture, the economic damages from soil erosion due to wind, and the social cost of carbon emissions were obtained from the literature and applied to the SLB using benefit transfer. We used Colorado's total factor productivity for agriculture to estimate the value of time (i.e., to include the effects of exogenous technological progress). We aggregated the economic data and the depreciation of natural capital for the SLB from 1980 to 2005. The results suggest that GNRP had a slight upward trend through most of this time period, despite temporary negative trends, the longest of which occurred during the period 1985-86 to 1987-88. However, given the upward trend in GNRP and the possibility of business cycles causing the temporary declines, there is no definitive evidence of moving away from sustainability. PMID:22483369

  5. Observation of exclusive charmonium production and gammagamma --> micro;{+}micro;{-} in pp[over] collisions at sqrt[s] = 1.96 TeV.

    PubMed

    Aaltonen, T; Adelman, J; Akimoto, T; Albrow, M G; Alvarez González, B; Amerio, S; Amidei, D; Anastassov, A; Annovi, A; Antos, J; Apollinari, G; Apresyan, A; Arisawa, T; Artikov, A; Ashmanskas, W; Attal, A; Aurisano, A; Azfar, F; Azzurri, P; Badgett, W; Barbaro-Galtieri, A; Barnes, V E; Barnett, B A; Bartsch, V; Bauer, G; Beauchemin, P-H; Bedeschi, F; Beecher, D; Behari, S; Bellettini, G; Bellinger, J; Benjamin, D; Beretvas, A; Beringer, J; Bhatti, A; Binkley, M; Bisello, D; Bizjak, I; Blair, R E; Blocker, C; Blumenfeld, B; Bocci, A; Bodek, A; Boisvert, V; Bolla, G; Bortoletto, D; Boudreau, J; Boveia, A; Brau, B; Bridgeman, A; Brigliadori, L; Bromberg, C; Brubaker, E; Budagov, J; Budd, H S; Budd, S; Burke, S; Burkett, K; Busetto, G; Bussey, P; Buzatu, A; Byrum, K L; Cabrera, S; Calancha, C; Campanelli, M; Campbell, M; Canelli, F; Canepa, A; Carls, B; Carlsmith, D; Carosi, R; Carrillo, S; Carron, S; Casal, B; Casarsa, M; Castro, A; Catastini, P; Cauz, D; Cavaliere, V; Cavalli-Sforza, M; Cerri, A; Cerrito, L; Chang, S H; Chen, Y C; Chertok, M; Chiarelli, G; Chlachidze, G; Chlebana, F; Cho, K; Chokheli, D; Chou, J P; Choudalakis, G; Chuang, S H; Chung, K; Chung, W H; Chung, Y S; Chwalek, T; Ciobanu, C I; Ciocci, M A; Clark, A; Clark, D; Compostella, G; Convery, M E; Conway, J; Cordelli, M; Cortiana, G; Cox, C A; Cox, D J; Crescioli, F; Cuenca Almenar, C; Cuevas, J; Culbertson, R; Cully, J C; Dagenhart, D; Datta, M; Davies, T; de Barbaro, P; De Cecco, S; Deisher, A; De Lorenzo, G; Dell'orso, M; Deluca, C; Demortier, L; Deng, J; Deninno, M; Derwent, P F; di Giovanni, G P; Dionisi, C; Di Ruzza, B; Dittmann, J R; D'Onofrio, M; Donati, S; Dong, P; Donini, J; Dorigo, T; Dube, S; Efron, J; Elagin, A; Erbacher, R; Errede, D; Errede, S; Eusebi, R; Fang, H C; Farrington, S; Fedorko, W T; Feild, R G; Feindt, M; Fernandez, J P; Ferrazza, C; Field, R; Flanagan, G; Forrest, R; Frank, M J; Franklin, M; Freeman, J C; Furic, I; Gallinaro, M; Galyardt, J; Garberson, F; Garcia, J E; Garfinkel, A F; Genser, K; Gerberich, H; Gerdes, D; Gessler, A; Giagu, S; Giakoumopoulou, V; Giannetti, P; Gibson, K; Gimmell, J L; Ginsburg, C M; Giokaris, N; Giordani, M; Giromini, P; Giunta, M; Giurgiu, G; Glagolev, V; Glenzinski, D; Gold, M; Goldschmidt, N; Golossanov, A; Gomez, G; Gomez-Ceballos, G; Goncharov, M; González, O; Gorelov, I; Goshaw, A T; Goulianos, K; Gresele, A; Grinstein, S; Grosso-Pilcher, C; Grundler, U; Guimaraes da Costa, J; Gunay-Unalan, Z; Haber, C; Hahn, K; Hahn, S R; Halkiadakis, E; Hamilton, A; Han, B-Y; Han, J Y; Happacher, F; Hara, K; Hare, D; Hare, M; Harper, S; Harr, R F; Harris, R M; Hartz, M; Hatakeyama, K; Hays, C; Heck, M; Heijboer, A; Heinrich, J; Henderson, C; Herndon, M; Heuser, J; Hewamanage, S; Hidas, D; Hill, C S; Hirschbuehl, D; Hocker, A; Hou, S; Houlden, M; Hsu, S-C; Huffman, B T; Hughes, R E; Husemann, U; Hussein, M; Huston, J; Incandela, J; Introzzi, G; Iori, M; Ivanov, A; James, E; Jang, D; Jayatilaka, B; Jeon, E J; Jha, M K; Jindariani, S; Johnson, W; Jones, M; Joo, K K; Jun, S Y; Jung, J E; Junk, T R; Kamon, T; Kar, D; Karchin, P E; Kato, Y; Kephart, R; Keung, J; Khotilovich, V; Kilminster, B; Kim, D H; Kim, H S; Kim, H W; Kim, J E; Kim, M J; Kim, S B; Kim, S H; Kim, Y K; Kimura, N; Kirsch, L; Klimenko, S; Knuteson, B; Ko, B R; Kondo, K; Kong, D J; Konigsberg, J; Korytov, A; Kotwal, A V; Kreps, M; Kroll, J; Krop, D; Krumnack, N; Kruse, M; Krutelyov, V; Kubo, T; Kuhr, T; Kulkarni, N P; Kurata, M; Kwang, S; Laasanen, A T; Lami, S; Lammel, S; Lancaster, M; Lander, R L; Lannon, K; Lath, A; Latino, G; Lazzizzera, I; Lecompte, T; Lee, E; Lee, H S; Lee, S W; Leone, S; Lewis, J D; Lin, C-S; Linacre, J; Lindgren, M; Lipeles, E; Lister, A; Litvintsev, D O; Liu, C; Liu, T; Lockyer, N S; Loginov, A; Loreti, M; Lovas, L; Lucchesi, D; Luci, C; Lueck, J; Lujan, P; Lukens, P; Lungu, G; Lyons, L; Lys, J; Lysak, R; Macqueen, D; Madrak, R; Maeshima, K; Makhoul, K; Maki, T; Maksimovic, P; Malde, S; Malik, S; Manca, G; Manousakis-Katsikakis, A; Margaroli, F; Marino, C; Marino, C P; Martin, A; Martin, V; Martínez, M; Martínez-Ballarín, R; Maruyama, T; Mastrandrea, P; Masubuchi, T; Mathis, M; Mattson, M E; Mazzanti, P; McFarland, K S; McIntyre, P; McNulty, R; Mehta, A; Mehtala, P; Menzione, A; Merkel, P; Mesropian, C; Miao, T; Miladinovic, N; Miller, R; Mills, C; Milnik, M; Mitra, A; Mitselmakher, G; Miyake, H; Moggi, N; Moon, C S; Moore, R; Morello, M J; Morlock, J; Movilla Fernandez, P; Mülmenstädt, J; Mukherjee, A; Muller, Th; Mumford, R; Murat, P; Mussini, M; Nachtman, J; Nagai, Y; Nagano, A; Naganoma, J; Nakamura, K; Nakano, I; Napier, A; Necula, V; Nett, J; Neu, C; Neubauer, M S; Neubauer, S; Nielsen, J; Nodulman, L; Norman, M; Norniella, O; Nurse, E; Oakes, L; Oh, S H; Oh, Y D; Oksuzian, I; Okusawa, T; Orava, R; Osterberg, K; Pagan Griso, S; Palencia, E; Papadimitriou, V; Papaikonomou, A; Paramonov, A A; Parks, B; Pashapour, S; Patrick, J; Pauletta, G; Paulini, M; Paus, C; Peiffer, T; Pellett, D E; Penzo, A; Phillips, T J; Piacentino, G; Pianori, E; Pinera, L; Pinfold, J; Pitts, K; Plager, C; Pondrom, L; Poukhov, O; Pounder, N; Prakoshyn, F; Pronko, A; Proudfoot, J; Ptohos, F; Pueschel, E; Punzi, G; Pursley, J; Rademacker, J; Rahaman, A; Ramakrishnan, V; Ranjan, N; Redondo, I; Renton, P; Renz, M; Rescigno, M; Richter, S; Rimondi, F; Ristori, L; Robson, A; Rodrigo, T; Rodriguez, T; Rogers, E; Rolli, S; Roser, R; Rossi, M; Rossin, R; Roy, P; Ruiz, A; Russ, J; Rusu, V; Saarikko, H; Safonov, A; Sakumoto, W K; Saltó, O; Santi, L; Sarkar, S; Sartori, L; Sato, K; Savoy-Navarro, A; Schlabach, P; Schmidt, A; Schmidt, E E; Schmidt, M A; Schmidt, M P; Schmitt, M; Schwarz, T; Scodellaro, L; Scribano, A; Scuri, F; Sedov, A; Seidel, S; Seiya, Y; Semenov, A; Sexton-Kennedy, L; Sforza, F; Sfyrla, A; Shalhout, S Z; Shears, T; Shepard, P F; Shimojima, M; Shiraishi, S; Shochet, M; Shon, Y; Shreyber, I; Sidoti, A; Sinervo, P; Sisakyan, A; Slaughter, A J; Slaunwhite, J; Sliwa, K; Smith, J R; Snider, F D; Snihur, R; Soha, A; Somalwar, S; Sorin, V; Spalding, J; Spreitzer, T; Squillacioti, P; Stanitzki, M; St Denis, R; Stelzer, B; Stelzer-Chilton, O; Stentz, D; Strologas, J; Strycker, G L; Stuart, D; Suh, J S; Sukhanov, A; Suslov, I; Suzuki, T; Taffard, A; Takashima, R; Takeuchi, Y; Tanaka, R; Tecchio, M; Teng, P K; Terashi, K; Thom, J; Thompson, A S; Thompson, G A; Thomson, E; Tipton, P; Ttito-Guzmán, P; Tkaczyk, S; Toback, D; Tokar, S; Tollefson, K; Tomura, T; Tonelli, D; Torre, S; Torretta, D; Totaro, P; Tourneur, S; Trovato, M; Tsai, S-Y; Tu, Y; Turini, N; Ukegawa, F; Vallecorsa, S; van Remortel, N; Varganov, A; Vataga, E; Vázquez, F; Velev, G; Vellidis, C; Vidal, M; Vidal, R; Vila, I; Vilar, R; Vine, T; Vogel, M; Volobouev, I; Volpi, G; Wagner, P; Wagner, R G; Wagner, R L; Wagner, W; Wagner-Kuhr, J; Wakisaka, T; Wallny, R; Wang, S M; Warburton, A; Waters, D; Weinberger, M; Weinelt, J; Wester, W C; Whitehouse, B; Whiteson, D; Wicklund, A B; Wicklund, E; Wilbur, S; Williams, G; Williams, H H; Wilson, P; Winer, B L; Wittich, P; Wolbers, S; Wolfe, C; Wright, T; Wu, X; Würthwein, F; Xie, S; Yagil, A; Yamamoto, K; Yamaoka, J; Yang, U K; Yang, Y C; Yao, W M; Yeh, G P; Yoh, J; Yorita, K; Yoshida, T; Yu, G B; Yu, I; Yu, S S; Yun, J C; Zanello, L; Zanetti, A; Zhang, L; Zhang, X; Zheng, Y; Zucchelli, S

    2009-06-19

    In CDF we have observed the reactions p + p[over] --> p + X + p[over], with X being a centrally produced J/psi, psi(2S), or chi_{c0}, and gammagamma-->micro;{+}micro;{-} in pp[over] collisions at sqrt[s] = 1.96 TeV. The event signature requires two oppositely charged central muons, and either no other particles or one additional photon detected. Exclusive vector meson production is as expected for elastic photoproduction, gamma + p --> J/psi(psi(2S)) + p, observed here for the first time in hadron-hadron collisions. We also observe exclusive chi_{c0} --> J/psi + gamma. The cross sections dsigma/dy|_{y = 0} for J/psi, psi(2S), and chi_{c0} are 3.92 +/- 0.25(stat) +/- 0.52(syst) nb, 0.53 +/- 0.09(stat) +/- 0.10(syst) nb, and 76 +/- 10(stat) +/- 10(syst) nb, respectively, and the continuum is consistent with QED. We put an upper limit on the cross section for Odderon exchange in exclusive J/psi production.

  6. Vertical Integration of Biomass Saccharification of Enzymes for Sustainable Cellulosic Biofuel Production in a Biorefinery

    SciTech Connect

    Manoj Kumar, PhD

    2011-05-09

    Lignocellulosic biomass is the most abundant, least expensive renewable natural biological resource for the production of biobased products and bioenergy is important for the sustainable development of human civilization in 21st century. For making the fermentable sugars from lignocellulosic biomass, a reduction in cellulase production cost, an improvement in cellulase performance, and an increase in sugar yields are all vital to reduce the processing costs of biorefineries. Improvements in specific cellulase activities for non-complexed cellulase mixtures can be implemented through cellulase engineering based on rational design or directed evolution for each cellulase component enzyme, as well as on the reconstitution of cellulase components. In this paper, we will provide DSM's efforts in cellulase research and developments and focus on limitations. Cellulase improvement strategies based on directed evolution using screening on relevant substrates, screening for higher thermal tolerance based on activity screening approaches such as continuous culture using insoluble cellulosic substrates as a powerful selection tool for enriching beneficial cellulase mutants from the large library. We will illustrate why and how thermostable cellulases are vital for economic delivery of bioproducts from cellulosic biomass using biochemical conversion approach.

  7. Research and development of eco-sustainable solutions for the production of innovative rigid suitcases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Domenico, Acierno; Pietro, Russo; Francesco, Costa; Irma, Nedi; Salvatore, Cioffi; Simona, Giudice; Massimiliano, Fraldi

    2015-12-01

    The huge difficulty recorded in the years about the disposal of an increasing amounts of plastic items at the end of their useful life has significantly influenced the choice of new materials in almost all industrial fields favouring the development of innovative eco-friendly solutions. In light of this consideration, under a national project, funded by the Research Ministry and specifically related to the luggage field, authors focused their attention on the production of new environmentally friendly suitcases based on the use of plastic scraps from the recycling chains and the use of biodegradable resins or coming from renewable resources. In the first case, recycled polyesters from bottle flakes were adequately modified by inclusion of opportune toughening and chain extender agents to meet quantitative specifications of the reference market. Alternatively, different commercial grades of poly(lactic acid) and poly(hydroxy alkanoates) resins have been considered still including organic modifiers to improve mechanical performances of products and natural reinforcement fabrics as cotton, jute and flax. All materials, always modified by reactive extrusion and transformed in pure sheets or woven fabric reinforced laminates by compression moulding, were characterized in terms of mechanical properties under static, dynamic and impulsive conditions, highlighting good perspectives for the reference applications. Suitcase prototypes, specifically designed in order to further improve mechanical performances of products and based on some selected formulations, were produced by thermoforming and validated by specific tests. Results confirmed a significant competitiveness of new eco-sustainable rigid suitcases with respect to commercial ones.

  8. Metabolic engineering of Escherichia coli: a sustainable industrial platform for bio-based chemical production.

    PubMed

    Chen, Xianzhong; Zhou, Li; Tian, Kangming; Kumar, Ashwani; Singh, Suren; Prior, Bernard A; Wang, Zhengxiang

    2013-12-01

    In order to decrease carbon emissions and negative environmental impacts of various pollutants, more bulk and/or fine chemicals are produced by bioprocesses, replacing the traditional energy and fossil based intensive route. The Gram-negative rod-shaped bacterium, Escherichia coli has been studied extensively on a fundamental and applied level and has become a predominant host microorganism for industrial applications. Furthermore, metabolic engineering of E. coli for the enhanced biochemical production has been significantly promoted by the integrated use of recent developments in systems biology, synthetic biology and evolutionary engineering. In this review, we focus on recent efforts devoted to the use of genetically engineered E. coli as a sustainable platform for the production of industrially important biochemicals such as biofuels, organic acids, amino acids, sugar alcohols and biopolymers. In addition, representative secondary metabolites produced by E. coli will be systematically discussed and the successful strategies for strain improvements will be highlighted. Moreover, this review presents guidelines for future developments in the bio-based chemical production using E. coli as an industrial platform.

  9. Exploration of upstream and downstream process for microwave assisted sustainable biodiesel production from microalgae Chlorella vulgaris.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Amit Kumar; Sahoo, Pradeepta Kumar; Singhal, Shailey; Joshi, Girdhar

    2016-09-01

    The present study explores the integrated approach for the sustainable production of biodiesel from Chlorella vulgaris microalgae. The microalgae were cultivated in 10m(2) open raceway pond at semi-continuous mode with optimum volumetric and areal production of 28.105kg/L/y and 71.51t/h/y, respectively. Alum was used as flocculent for harvesting the microalgae and optimized at different pH. Lipid was extracted using chloroform: methanol (2:1) and having 12.39% of FFA. Effect of various reaction conditions such as effect of catalyst, methanol:lipid ratio, reaction temperature and time on biodiesel yields were studied under microwave irradiation; and 84.01% of biodiesel yield was obtained under optimized reaction conditions. A comparison was also made between the biodiesel productions under conventional heating and microwave irradiation. The synthesized biodiesel was characterized by (1)H NMR, (13)C NMR, FTIR and GC; however, fuel properties of biodiesel were also studied using specified test methods as per ASTM and EN standards. PMID:27318156

  10. From ozone depletion to agriculture: understanding the role of UV radiation in sustainable crop production.

    PubMed

    Wargent, Jason J; Jordan, Brian R

    2013-03-01

    Largely because of concerns regarding global climate change, there is a burgeoning interest in the application of fundamental scientific knowledge in order to better exploit environmental cues in the achievement of desirable endpoints in crop production. Ultraviolet (UV) radiation is an energetic driver of a diverse range of plant responses and, despite historical concerns regarding the damaging consequences of UV-B radiation for global plant productivity as related to stratospheric ozone depletion, current developments representative of a range of organizational scales suggest that key plant responses to UV-B radiation may be exploitable in the context of a sustainable contribution towards the strengthening of global crop production, including alterations in secondary metabolism, enhanced photoprotection, up-regulation of the antioxidative response and modified resistance to pest and disease attack. Here, we discuss the prospect of this paradigm shift in photobiology, and consider the linkages between fundamental plant biology and crop-level outcomes that can be applied to the plant UV-B response, in addition to the consequences for related biota and many other facets of agro-ecosystem processes.

  11. Indirect water management through Life Cycle Assessment: Fostering sustainable production in developing countries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pfister, S.; Bayer, P.; Koehler, A.; Hellweg, S.

    2009-04-01

    Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) represents a methodological framework for analyzing the total environmental impact of any product or service of our daily life. After tracking all associated emissions and the consumption of resources, this impact is expressed with respect to a few common impact categories. These are supposed to reflect major societal and environmental priorities. However, despite their central role in environmental processes, to date hydrological as well as hydrogeological aspects are only rarely considered in LCA. Compared with standard impact categories within LCA, water is special. In contrast to other abiotic resources such as crude oil, it can be replenished. Total freshwater resources are immense, but not evenly distributed and often scarce in regions of high demand. Consequently, threads to natural water bodies have immense spatial dependency. Setting up functional relationships in order to derive a generally valid and practicable evaluation is tedious due to the complex, insufficiently understood, and uncertain natural processes involved. LCA that includes the environmental effects of water consumption means global indirect water resource management. It supports goal-directed consumer behaviour that aims to reduce pressure on natural water systems. By developing a hydrologically-based assessment of potential impacts from human interaction with natural water bodies, "greener" products can be prioritised. More sustainable and environmentally friendly water management is the result. The proposed contribution presents an operational assessment method of global surface water consumption for impacts on human health and ecosystem quality within a LCA framework. A major focus is the issue of how such global assessment helps to quantify potential impacts from water-intensive production in developing countries, where the means for proper water management are often limited. We depict a compensation scheme for impacts related to water consumption that

  12. Participation, Value Rationality and Mutual Learning in Transdisciplinary Knowledge Production for Sustainable Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Polk, Merritt; Knutsson, Per

    2008-01-01

    Given the complexity of current social structures and environmental problems, attaining a truly sustainable society seems rather improbable today. Not only has society not been planned for the complexity of the preconditions and effects that sustainability entails, sustainability is also unlikely given current individual consumption patterns,…

  13. Roles of Nano- and Micro-Scale Subsurface Geochemical Reactions on Environmentally Sustainable Geologic Carbon Dioxide Sequestration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Yandi

    Geologic CO2 sequestration (GCS) is a promising approach to reduce anthropogenic CO2 emissions into the atmosphere. At GCS sites, injected CO2 is kept in formation rock by an overlying low permeability caprock. During and after CO2 injection, geochemical reactions can affect the porosity, permeability, and pollutant transport in aquifers. Despite their importance, nano- and micro-scale subsurface geochemical reactions are far from well-understood. Clay mobilization has been reported to decrease aquifer permeability during water flooding, and clay minerals are abundant in caprock. Thus, we studied CO2-brine-clay interactions under varied conditions relevant to different GCS sites (at 35-95°C and under 35-120 atm CO2, in water, NaCl, MgCl2, or CaCl2 solutions). Biotite, Fe-bearing mica, was used as a model clay mineral. We observed numerous fibrous illite precipitates on mica after reaction for only 3 h, which had not been previously reported. A few hours later, the mica surface cracked and fibrous illite detached. The mobilization of fibrous illite can decrease the aquifer's permeability greatly and affect the safety and efficiency of GCS. Mechanisms related to ion exchange, mica swelling, and CO2 intercalation were explored. Oriented aggregation of illite nanoparticles forming the fibrous illite was directly observed, suggesting a new mechanism for fibrous illite formation. Interestingly, besides the pH effect, aqueous CO2 enhances mica cracking over N2. These findings can help to achieve safer subsurface operations. At GCS field sites, Fe concentration increased near the injection sites and originally adsorbed pollutants were released. As the brine flows, Fe re-precipitated because of pH increase. To better predict the fate and transport of aqueous pollutants, the nucleation and growth of Fe(III) (hydr)oxides were studied. New information about sizes and volumes of the Fe(III) (hydr)oxide nanoparticles precipitated in solution and on quartz, mica, and sapphire

  14. Evaluating the composition and processing potential of novel sources of Brazilian biomass for sustainable biorenewables production

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The search for promising and renewable sources of carbohydrates for the production of biofuels and other biorenewables has been stimulated by an increase in global energy demand in the face of growing concern over greenhouse gas emissions and fuel security. In particular, interest has focused on non-food lignocellulosic biomass as a potential source of abundant and sustainable feedstock for biorefineries. Here we investigate the potential of three Brazilian grasses (Panicum maximum, Pennisetum purpureum and Brachiaria brizantha), as well as bark residues from the harvesting of two commercial Eucalyptus clones (E. grandis and E. grandis x urophylla) for biofuel production, and compare these to sugarcane bagasse. The effects of hot water, acid, alkaline and sulfite pretreatments (at increasing temperatures) on the chemical composition, morphology and saccharification yields of these different biomass types were evaluated. Results The average yield (per hectare), availability and general composition of all five biomasses were compared. Compositional analyses indicate a high level of hemicellulose and lignin removal in all grass varieties (including sugarcane bagasse) after acid and alkaline pretreatment with increasing temperatures, whilst the biomasses pretreated with hot water or sulfite showed little variation from the control. For all biomasses, higher cellulose enrichment resulted from treatment with sodium hydroxide at 130°C. At 180°C, a decrease in cellulose content was observed, which is associated with high amorphous cellulose removal and 5-hydroxymethyl-furaldehyde production. Morphological analysis showed the effects of different pretreatments on the biomass surface, revealing a high production of microfibrillated cellulose on grass surfaces, after treatment with 1% sodium hydroxide at 130°C for 30 minutes. This may explain the higher hydrolysis yields resulting from these pretreatments, since these cellulosic nanoparticles can be easily

  15. MicroRNA binding to the HIV-1 Gag protein inhibits Gag assembly and virus production

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Antony K.; Sengupta, Prabuddha; Waki, Kayoko; Van Engelenburg, Schuyler B.; Ochiya, Takahiro; Ablan, Sherimay D.; Freed, Eric O.; Lippincott-Schwartz, Jennifer

    2014-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small, 18–22 nt long, noncoding RNAs that act as potent negative gene regulators in a variety of physiological and pathological processes. To repress gene expression, miRNAs are packaged into RNA-induced silencing complexes (RISCs) that target mRNAs for degradation and/or translational repression in a sequence-specific manner. Recently, miRNAs have been shown to also interact with proteins outside RISCs, impacting cellular processes through mechanisms not involving gene silencing. Here, we define a previously unappreciated activity of miRNAs in inhibiting RNA–protein interactions that in the context of HIV-1 biology blocks HIV virus budding and reduces virus infectivity. This occurs by miRNA binding to the nucleocapsid domain of the Gag protein, the main structural component of HIV-1 virions. The resulting miRNA–Gag complexes interfere with viral–RNA-mediated Gag assembly and viral budding at the plasma membrane, with imperfectly assembled Gag complexes endocytosed and delivered to lysosomes. The blockade of virus production by miRNA is reversed by adding the miRNA’s target mRNA and stimulated by depleting Argonaute-2, suggesting that when miRNAs are not mediating gene silencing, they can block HIV-1 production through disruption of Gag assembly on membranes. Overall, our findings have significant implications for understanding how cells modulate HIV-1 infection by miRNA expression and raise the possibility that miRNAs can function to disrupt RNA-mediated protein assembly processes in other cellular contexts. PMID:24938790

  16. Considerations for Sustainable Biomass Production in Quercus-Dominated Forest Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bruckman, Viktor; Yan, Shuai; Hochbichler, Eduard

    2013-04-01

    Our current energy system is mainly based on carbon (C) intensive metabolisms, resulting in great effects on the earth's biosphere. The majority of the energy sources are fossil (crude oil, coal, natural gas) and release CO2 in the combustion (oxidation) process which takes place during utilization of the energy. C released to the atmosphere was once sequestered by biomass over a time span of millions of years and is now being released back into the atmosphere within a period of just decades. In the context of green and CO2 neutral Energy, there is an on-going debate regarding the potentials of obtaining biomass from forests on multiple scales, from stand to international levels. Especially in the context of energy, it is highlighted that biomass is an entirely CO2 neutral feedstock since the carbon stored in wood originates from the atmospheric CO2 pool and it was taken up during plant growth. It needs systems approaches in order to justify this statement and ensure sustainability covering the whole life-cycle from biomass production to (bio)energy consumption. There are a number of Quercus woodland management systems focussing solely on woody biomass production for energetic utilization or a combination with traditional forestry and high quality timber production for trades and industry. They have often developed regionally as a consequence of specific demands and local production capacities, which are mainly driven by environmental factors such as climate and soil properties. We assessed the nutritional status of a common Quercus-dominated forest ecosystem in northern Austria, where we compared biomass- with belowground C and nutrient pools in order to identify potential site limits if the management shifts towards systems with a higher level of nutrient extraction. Heterogeneity of soils, and soil processes are considered, as well as other, growth-limiting factors (e.g. precipitation) and species-specific metabolisms and element translocation.

  17. Activated human valvular interstitial cells sustain interleukin-17 production to recruit neutrophils in infective endocarditis.

    PubMed

    Yeh, Chiou-Yueh; Shun, Chia-Tung; Kuo, Yu-Min; Jung, Chiau-Jing; Hsieh, Song-Chou; Chiu, Yen-Ling; Chen, Jeng-Wei; Hsu, Ron-Bin; Yang, Chia-Ju; Chia, Jean-San

    2015-06-01

    The mechanisms that underlie valvular inflammation in streptococcus-induced infective endocarditis (IE) remain unclear. We previously demonstrated that streptococcal glucosyltransferases (GTFs) can activate human heart valvular interstitial cells (VIC) to secrete interleukin-6 (IL-6), a cytokine involved in T helper 17 (Th17) cell differentiation. Here, we tested the hypothesis that activated VIC can enhance neutrophil infiltration through sustained IL-17 production, leading to valvular damage. To monitor cytokine and chemokine production, leukocyte recruitment, and the induction or expansion of CD4(+) CD45RA(-) CD25(-) CCR6(+) Th17 cells, primary human VIC were cultured in vitro and activated by GTFs. Serum cytokine levels were measured using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), and neutrophils and Th17 cells were detected by immunohistochemistry in infected valves from patients with IE. The expression of IL-21, IL-23, IL-17, and retinoic acid receptor-related orphan receptor C (Rorc) was upregulated in GTF-activated VIC, which may enhance the proliferation of memory Th17 cells in an IL-6-dependent manner. Many chemokines, including chemokine (C-X-C motif) ligand 1 (CXCL1), were upregulated in GTF-activated VIC, which might recruit neutrophils and CD4(+) T cells. Moreover, CXCL1 production in VIC was induced in a dose-dependent manner by IL-17 to enhance neutrophil chemotaxis. CXCL1-expressing VIC and infiltrating neutrophils could be detected in infected valves, and serum concentrations of IL-17, IL-21, and IL-23 were increased in patients with IE compared to healthy donors. Furthermore, elevated serum IL-21 levels have been significantly associated with severe valvular damage, including rupture of chordae tendineae, in IE patients. Our findings suggest that VIC are activated by bacterial modulins to recruit neutrophils and that such activities might be further enhanced by the production of Th17-associated cytokines. Together, these factors can amplify

  18. Application of micro X-ray diffraction to investigate the reaction products formed by the alkali silica reaction in concrete structures

    SciTech Connect

    Dähn, R.; Arakcheeva, A.; Schaub, Ph.; Pattison, P.; Chapuis, G.; Grolimund, D.; Wieland, E.; Leemann, A.

    2015-12-21

    Alkali–silica reaction (ASR) is one of the most important deterioration mechanisms in concrete leading to substantial damages of structures worldwide. Synchrotron-based micro-X-ray diffraction (micro-XRD) was employed to characterize the mineral phases formed in micro-cracks of concrete aggregates as a consequence of ASR. This particular high spatial resolution technique enables to directly gain structural information on ASR products formed in a 40-year old motorway bridge damaged due to ASR. Micro-X-ray-fluorescence was applied on thin sections to locate the reaction products formed in veins within concrete aggregates. Micro-XRD pattern were collected at selected points of interest along a vein by rotating the sample. Rietveld refinement determined the structure of the ASR product consisting of a new layered framework similar to mountainite and rhodesite. Furthermore, it is conceivable that understanding the structure of the ASR product may help developing new technical treatments inhibiting ASR.

  19. Conceptual design of an integrated hydrothermal liquefaction and biogas plant for sustainable bioenergy production.

    PubMed

    Hoffmann, Jessica; Rudra, Souman; Toor, Saqib S; Holm-Nielsen, Jens Bo; Rosendahl, Lasse A

    2013-02-01

    Initial process studies carried out in Aspen Plus on an integrated thermochemical conversion process are presented herein. In the simulations, a hydrothermal liquefaction (HTL) plant is combined with a biogas plant (BP), such that the digestate from the BP is converted to a biocrude in the HTL process. This biorefinery concept offers a sophisticated and sustainable way of converting organic residuals into a range of high-value biofuel streams in addition to combined heat and power (CHP) production. The primary goal of this study is to provide an initial estimate of the feasibility of such a process. By adding a diesel-quality-fuel output to the process, the product value is increased significantly compared to a conventional BP. An input of 1000 kg h(-1) manure delivers approximately 30-38 kg h(-1) fuel and 38-61 kg h(-1) biogas. The biogas can be used to upgrade the biocrude, to supply the gas grid or for CHP. An estimated 62-84% of the biomass energy can be recovered in the biofuels.

  20. Application of Biotechnology to Construct a Sustainable Biodiesel Production System on Wastewater

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Xiaodan; Liu, Yuhuan; Xu, Erni; Liu, Jianqiang; Ruan, Roger; Fu, Guiming

    2010-11-01

    The potential of microalgae biodiesel is unlimited. The ingenious combination of microalgae biomass exploitation, decontamination of municipal wastewater, and CO2 fixation may gestate the ultimate hope for solving the problem of liquid alternative fuel. However, the municipal wastewater has some characteristics, such as high content of nitrogen and phosphorus, low C/N ratio, fluctuation of loading rate, toxicity of heavy metal, etc. To overcome these problems, studies are currently underway in our laboratory. In this paper, an idea of constructing a sustainable biodiesel production system from microalgae on wastewater is assumed. The system could realize CO2 fixation, decontamination of municipal wastewater, and production of high value-added biodiesel by microalgae. Firstly, municipal wastewater is used as the cultivation media and CO2 as gaseous fertilizer for mass culture of Shuihua microalgae. So with the harvest of large quantities of low-price Shuihua microalgae, the nitrogen, phosphorus and heavy metals can be removed from the wastewater, and the emission of greenhouse gas can be reduced. Secondly, try to breed a high-oil content engineering microalgae by heterotrophic cultivation which could realize high-density growth through the conjunction of the advanced methods of fermentation engineering with the microalgae breeding technology. Finally, make the high-oil content engineering microalgae cultivated on the decomposed Shuihua microalgae cells, and try to make the high-oil content engineering microalgae grow rapidly in the initial stage and start oil accumulation when nitrogen is exhausted by controlling the conditions of fermentation.

  1. Sustainable design for automotive products: dismantling and recycling of end-of-life vehicles.

    PubMed

    Tian, Jin; Chen, Ming

    2014-02-01

    The growth in automotive production has increased the number of end-of-life vehicles (ELVs) annually. The traditional approach ELV processing involves dismantling, shredding, and landfill disposal. The "3R" (i.e., reduce, reuse, and recycle) principle has been increasingly employed in processing ELVs, particularly ELV parts, to promote sustainable development. The first step in processing ELVs is dismantling. However, certain parts of the vehicle are difficult to disassemble and use in practice. The extended producer responsibility policy requires carmakers to contribute in the processing of scrap cars either for their own developmental needs or for social responsibility. The design for dismantling approach can be an effective solution to the existing difficulties in dismantling ELVs. This approach can also provide guidelines in the design of automotive products. This paper illustrates the difficulty of handling polymers in dashboards. The physical properties of polymers prevent easy separation and recycling by using mechanical methods. Thus, dealers have to rely on chemical methods such as pyrolysis. Therefore, car designers should use a single material to benefit dealers. The use of materials for effective end-of-life processing without sacrificing the original performance requirements of the vehicle should be explored.

  2. Tree legumes as feedstock for sustainable biofuel production: Opportunities and challenges.

    PubMed

    Biswas, Bandana; Scott, Paul T; Gresshoff, Peter M

    2011-11-01

    Concerns about future fossil fuel supplies and the environmental effects of their consumption have prompted the search for alternative sources of liquid fuels, specifically biofuels. However, it is important that the sources of such biofuel have minimal impact on global food supplies, land use, and commodity prices. Many legume trees can be grown on so-called marginal land with beneficial effects to the environment through their symbiotic interaction with "Rhizobia" and the associated process of root nodule development and biological nitrogen fixation. Once established legume trees can live for many years and some produce an annual yield of oil-rich seeds. For example, the tropical and sub-tropical legume tree Pongamia pinnata produces large seeds (∼1.5-2g) that contain about 40% oil, the quality and composition of which is regarded as highly desirable for sustainable biofuel production. Here we consider the benefits of legume trees as future energy crops, particularly in relation to their impact on nitrogen inputs and the net energy balance for biofuel production, and also ways in which these as yet fully domesticated species may be further improved for optimal use as biofuel feedstock. PMID:21715045

  3. Sustainable production of azadirachtin from differentiated in vitro cell lines of neem (Azadirachta indica)

    PubMed Central

    Singh, Mithilesh; Chaturvedi, Rakhi

    2013-01-01

    Azadirachtin has high industrial demand due to its immediate application as an ecofriendly, biodegradable biopesticide and also due to its various other significant bioactivities. To date, the only commercially feasible way to produce azadirachtin is extraction from seeds, but their availability is very limited as the tree flowers only once a year and only one-third of the fruits are collected due to operational problems. Further, due to the strict out-breeding nature of the plant, the seeds are highly heterozygous, resulting in inconsistent metabolite production. Therefore, in the present study, to achieve sustainable production of azadirachtin, dedifferentiated and redifferentiated calli derived from various explants of neem—zygotic embryo, leaf and ovary—were investigated for their potential to biosynthesize azadirachtin. High-performance liquid chromatography analysis of the in vitro cell lines showed the presence of azadirachtin in all the samples tested, the content of which in cultured cells varied with explant source and cell differentiation response. The presence of azadirachtin in samples was further confirmed by positive electrospray ionization mass spectroscopy. The zygotic embryo cultures of neem accumulated much higher amounts of azadirachtin than leaf and ovary cultures. Furthermore, organized in vitro callus cultures (redifferentiated) supported higher azadirachtin biosynthesis, while unorganized callus cultures (dedifferentiated) supported the least. The maximum azadirachtin content of 2.33 mg g−1 dry weight was obtained from redifferentiated immature zygotic embryo cultures.

  4. A novel framework to classify marginal land for sustainable biomass feedstock production.

    PubMed

    Gopalakrishnan, Gayathri; Cristina Negri, M; Snyder, Seth W

    2011-01-01

    To achieve food and energy security, sustainable bioenergy has become an important goal for many countries. The use of marginal lands to produce energy crops is one strategy for achieving this goal, but what is marginal land? Current definitions generally focus on a single criterion, primarily agroeconomic profitability. Herein, we present a framework that incorporates multiple criteria including profitability of current land use, soil health indicators (erosion, flooding, drainage, or high slopes), and environmental degradation resulting from contamination of surface water or groundwater resources. We tested this framework for classifying marginal land in the state of Nebraska and estimated the potential for using marginal land to produce biofuel crops. Our results indicate that approximately 1.6 million ha, or 4 million acres, of land (approximately 8% of total land area) could be classified as marginal on the basis of at least two criteria. Second-generation lignocellulosic bioenergy crops such as switchgrass ( Panicum virgatum L.), miscanthus (Miscanthus giganteus), native prairie grasses, and short-rotation woody crops could be grown on this land in redesigned landscapes that meet energy and environmental needs, without significant impacts on food or feed production. Calculating tradeoffs between the economics of redesigned landscapes and current practices at the field scale is the next step for determining functional designs for integrating biofuel feedstock production into current land management practices.

  5. Biosynthesis of hydroxycinnamate conjugates: Implications for sustainable biomass and biofuel production

    SciTech Connect

    Liu C. J.

    2010-09-01

    Hydroxycinnamic acids constitute a large class of phenylpropanoid metabolites that are distributed ubiquitously in terrestrial plants. They occur most frequently as esters, amides or glycosides within the cytosol, the particular subcellular compartments such as the vacuole or the cell wall. Hydroxycinnamate conjugates play a vital role in the plant's growth and development and in its defense responses against biotic- and abiotic-stresses. Furthermore, the incorporation of hydroxycinnamate conjugates into the cell wall is a major factor attenuating the wall's biodegradability. Understanding the biosyntheses of hydroxycinnamate conjugates and its molecular regulation may well facilitate the sustainable production of cell wall biomass, and the efficient conversion of lignocellulosic materials. This paper reviews our current molecular and biochemical understandings on the formation of several classes of hydroxycinnamate esters and amides, including the soluble conjugates and the 'wall-bound' phenolics. It also discusses the emerging biotechnological applications in manipulating hydroxycinnamates to improve the degradability of the cell wall biomass and enhance the production of valuable chemicals and biomaterials.

  6. Combined Sustainability Assessment and Techno-Economic Analysis for the Production of Biomass-Derived High-Octane Gasoline Blendstock

    SciTech Connect

    Tan, Eric C. D.; Talmadge, Michael; Dutta, Abhijit

    2015-11-13

    Conversion technologies for biomass to liquid hydrocarbon fuels are being actively developed. Converting biomass into advanced hydrocarbon fuels requires detailed assessments to help prioritize research; techno-economic analysis (TEA) is a long established tool used to assess feasibility and progress. TEA provides information needed to make informed judgments about the viability of any given conceptual conversion process; it is particularly useful to identify technical barriers and measure progress toward overcoming those barriers. Expansion of the cellulosic biofuels industry at the scale needed to meet the Renewable Fuel Standard goals is also expected to have environmental impacts. Hence, the success of the biofuels industry depends not only on economic viability, but also on environmental sustainability. A biorefinery process that is economically feasible but suffers from key sustainability drawbacks is not likely to represent a long-term solution to replace fossil-derived fuels. Overarching concerns like environmental sustainability need to be addressed for biofuels production. Combined TEA and environmental sustainability assessment of emerging pathways helps facilitate biorefinery designs that are both economically feasible and minimally impactful to the environment. This study focuses on environmental sustainability assessment and techno-economic analysis for the production of high-octane gasoline blendstock via gasification and methanol/dimethyl ether intermediates. Results from the conceptual process design with economic analysis, along with the quantification and assessment of the environmental sustainability, are presented and discussed. Sustainability metrics associated with the production of high-octane gasoline include carbon conversion efficiency, consumptive water use, life-cycle greenhouse gas emissions, fossil energy consumption, energy return on investment and net energy value.

  7. Piezoelectric Energy Harvesting: A Green and Clean Alternative for Sustained Power Production

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cook-Chennault, Kimberly Ann; Thambi, Nithya; Bitetto, Mary Anne; Hameyie, E. B.

    2008-01-01

    Providing efficient and clean power is a challenge for devices that range from the micro to macro in scale. Although there has been significant progress in the development of micro-, meso-, and macro-scale power supplies and technologies, realization of many devices is limited by the inability of power supplies to scale with the diminishing sizes…

  8. Micro-chemical and micro-structural investigation of the corrosion products on `` The Dancing Satyr'' (Mazara del Vallo, Sicily, Italy)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ingo, G. M.; Riccucci, C.; Faraldi, F.; Casaletto, M. P.; Guida, G.

    2010-09-01

    The “ Dancing Satyr”, a bronze statue measuring more than 2 metres in height and weighting 108 kg, represents one of the most important recent archaeological finds in Italy. The statue was discovered on the floor of the Sicilian channel (the portion of the Mediterranean sea between Sicily and Tunisia), not far from the south-western Sicilian coast, under 500 metres of seawater in 1998. The bronze statue depicts a nude satyr captured in a frenzied whirling movement during a dance in honour of Dionysus, the God of wine. Though some scholars dated it to the IV century B.C. as an original Praxiteles work or a copy thereof, it could be also dated either back to the Hellenistic period (III or II century B.C.) or possibly to the Roman Empire age (early II century A.D.). The nature and structure of the corrosion products grown on the Dancing Satyr surface and the metallurgical features of the statue were investigated taking into account the nature of the marine environment of provenance. A detailed micro-chemical and micro-structural characterisation was performed by means of the combined use of scanning electron microscopy (SEM), energy-dispersive spectrometry (EDS), X-ray diffraction (XRD) and optical microscopy (OM). Results provided good insight into the different corrosion layers and a tentative correlation of the patina nature and the chemical composition of the statue and the marine context is proposed.

  9. Forest Productivity and Diversity: Using Ecological Theory and Landscape Models to Guide Sustainable Forest Management

    SciTech Connect

    Huston, M.A.

    1998-11-01

    Sustainable forest management requires maintaining or increasing ecosystem productivity, while preserving or restoring natural levels of biodiversity. Application of general concepts from ecological theory, along with use of mechanistic, landscape-based computer models, can contribute to the successful achievement of both of these objectives. Ecological theories based on the energetics and dynamics of populations can be used to predict the general distribution of individual species, the diversity of different types of species, ecosystem process rates and pool sizes, and patterns of spatial and temporal heterogeneity over a broad range of environmental conditions. This approach requires subdivision of total biodiversity into functional types of organisms, primarily because different types of organisms respond very differently to the spatial and temporal variation of environmental conditions on landscapes. The diversity of species of the same functional type (particularly among plants) tends to be highest at relatively low levels of net primary productivity, while the total number of different functional types (particularly among animals) tends to be highest at high levels of productivity (e.g., site index or potential net primary productivity). In general, the diversity of animals at higher trophic levels (e.g., predators) reaches its maximum at much higher levels of productivity than the diversity of lower trophic levels (e.g., plants). This means that a single environment cannot support high diversity of all types of organisms. Within the framework of the general patterns described above, the distributions, population dynamics, and diversity of organisms in specific regions can be predicted more precisely using a combination of computer simulation models and GIS data based on satellite information and ground surveys. Biophysical models that use information on soil properties, climate, and hydrology have been developed to predict how the abundance and spatial

  10. One-step electrohydrodynamic production of drug-loaded micro- and nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Enayati, Marjan; Ahmad, Zeeshan; Stride, Eleanor; Edirisinghe, Mohan

    2010-04-01

    The objective of this work was to produce drug-loaded nanometre- and micrometre-scale particles using a single-step process that provides control over particle size and size distribution. Co-axial electrohydrodynamic processing was used, at ambient temperature and pressure, with poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) as the polymeric coating material and oestradiol as the encapsulated drug. The particle diameter was varied from less than 120 nm to a few micrometres, by simple methodical adjustments in the processing parameters (polymer concentration and applied voltage). In vitro studies were performed to determine the drug release profile from the particles during unassisted and ultrasound-stimulated degradation in simulated body fluid. An encapsulation efficiency of approximately 70% was achieved and release of the drug was sustained for a period of over 20 days. Exposing the particles to ultrasound (22.5 kHz) increased the rate of release by approximately 8 per cent. This processing method offers several advantages over conventional emulsification techniques for the preparation of drug-loaded particles. Most significantly, process efficiency and the drug's functionality are preserved, as complex multistep processing involving harsh solvents, other additives and elevated temperatures or pressures are avoided. Production rates of 10(12) particles min(-1) can be achieved with a single pair of co-axial needles and the process is amenable to being scaled up by using multiple sets.

  11. Commercialization of bacterial cell factories for the sustainable production of polyhydroxyalkanoate thermoplastics: progress and prospects.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Abhishek; Srivastava, Janmejai K; Mallick, Nirupama; Singh, Akhilesh K

    2015-01-01

    Ubiquitous conventional plastics, generally manufactured from finite, nonsustainable fossil fuels are non-biodegradable wonder entities but their ill effect on Mother Nature has subsequently raised major environmental concerns like their safe disposal, solid waste management and several potential hazards. Such concerns have fuelled initiatives for research globally towards development of sustainable and eco-friendly bioplastics. The new generation of plastics called 'bioplastics' are polymers of long chain of repeating monomer units that are classified as photodegradable, semi-biodegradable, chemically synthesized and polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs). The commonly emerged novel bioplastics are polyesters of hydroxyalkanoates (HAs) called PHAs, which are lipoidic storage materials found in the cytosol of vast and diverse forms of bacteria. Among 150 different PHAs known so far, poly- 3-hydroxybutyrate is the most common and comprehensively characterized PHA. Interestingly, PHAs are only completely biodegradable plastics with material properties comparable to conventional plastics that can be achieved by regulating the co-monomers incorporation into PHAs backbone. PHA bioplastics are exploited in the form of user-friendly goods viz. films, absorbable sutures, bone plates, drug carriers, etc. Besides advantages, such useful entity(s) has major shortcomings as well like high production cost compared to conventional plastics. Precisely, in PHAs production, about fifty percent of the overall price is due to the carbon substrates. Consequently, exploring novel cost-effective substrates is a major compulsion for successful commercialization of this bioplastic, which is anticipated to reduce the cost of production as a result of advancing and intensifying research work. This review presents an insight and patent developments in the field of PHAs bioplastics.

  12. Commercialization of bacterial cell factories for the sustainable production of polyhydroxyalkanoate thermoplastics: progress and prospects.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Abhishek; Srivastava, Janmejai K; Mallick, Nirupama; Singh, Akhilesh K

    2015-01-01

    Ubiquitous conventional plastics, generally manufactured from finite, nonsustainable fossil fuels are non-biodegradable wonder entities but their ill effect on Mother Nature has subsequently raised major environmental concerns like their safe disposal, solid waste management and several potential hazards. Such concerns have fuelled initiatives for research globally towards development of sustainable and eco-friendly bioplastics. The new generation of plastics called 'bioplastics' are polymers of long chain of repeating monomer units that are classified as photodegradable, semi-biodegradable, chemically synthesized and polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs). The commonly emerged novel bioplastics are polyesters of hydroxyalkanoates (HAs) called PHAs, which are lipoidic storage materials found in the cytosol of vast and diverse forms of bacteria. Among 150 different PHAs known so far, poly- 3-hydroxybutyrate is the most common and comprehensively characterized PHA. Interestingly, PHAs are only completely biodegradable plastics with material properties comparable to conventional plastics that can be achieved by regulating the co-monomers incorporation into PHAs backbone. PHA bioplastics are exploited in the form of user-friendly goods viz. films, absorbable sutures, bone plates, drug carriers, etc. Besides advantages, such useful entity(s) has major shortcomings as well like high production cost compared to conventional plastics. Precisely, in PHAs production, about fifty percent of the overall price is due to the carbon substrates. Consequently, exploring novel cost-effective substrates is a major compulsion for successful commercialization of this bioplastic, which is anticipated to reduce the cost of production as a result of advancing and intensifying research work. This review presents an insight and patent developments in the field of PHAs bioplastics. PMID:26073514

  13. Recycling of quarry waste as part of sustainable aggregate production: Norwegian and Italian point of view

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Antonella Dino, Giovanna; Willy Danielsen, Svein; Chiappino, Claudia; Primavori, Piero; Engelsen, Christian John

    2016-04-01

    Resource preservation is one of the main challenges in Europe, together with waste management and recycling; recently several researchers are interested in the recovering of critical raw materials and secondary raw materials from landfill. Aggregate supply, even if it is not "critical" sensus stricto (s.s.), is one of the European priorities (low value but high volume needs). On the other side, the management of quarry waste , mainly from dimension stones, but also as fines from aggregate crushing, is still a matter of concern. Such materials are managed in different ways both locally and nationwide, and often they are landfilled, because of an unclear legislation and a general lack of data. Most of time the local authorities adopt the maximum precaution principle or the enterprises find it little profitable to recover them, so that the sustainable recycling of such material is not valued. Several studies have shown, depending on the material specific characteristics, the viability of recycling quarry waste into new raw materials used in glass and ceramic industries, precast concrete production, infrastructures etc. (Loudes et al. 2012, Dino&Marian 2015, Bozzola et al 2012, Dino et al. 2012, etc.). Thus, aggregate production may be one of the profitable ways to use quarry waste and is falling under the priority of EU (aggregate supply). Positive economic and environmental effects are likely to be achieved by systematic recycling of quarry waste planned by industries (industrial planning) and public authorities (national and local planning of aggregate exploitation). Today, the recycling level varies to a great extent and systematic recovery is not common among European Countries. In Italy and Norway no significant incentives on recycling or systematic approaches for local aggregate exploitation exist. The environmental consequences can be overexploitation of the natural resources, land take for the landfills, environmental contamination and landscape alteration by

  14. The generation of aerosols by accidents which may occur during plant-scale production of micro-organisms.

    PubMed Central

    Ashcroft, J.; Pomeroy, N. P.

    1983-01-01

    Experiments have been performed to simulate accidents which may occur during large-scale production of micro-organisms. Four types of accident, which were considered to be the most likely to result in the greatest hazard to health, were simulated using a bacterial model. The accidents were all concerned with faults occurring in the operation of the microbial fermenter. Gross contamination of surfaces occurred in all experiments, but only three types of accident produced a measurable aerosol. PMID:6350448

  15. Hyperglycemia Determines Increased Specific MicroRNAs Levels in Sera and HDL of Acute Coronary Syndrome Patients and Stimulates MicroRNAs Production in Human Macrophages

    PubMed Central

    Carnuta, Mihaela G.; Sanda, Gabriela M.; Stancu, Camelia S.; Popescu, Andreea C.; Popescu, Mihaela R.; Vlad, Adelina; Dimulescu, Doina R.; Simionescu, Maya; Sima, Anca V.

    2016-01-01

    We aimed to determine the levels of microRNAs (miRNAs) in sera and HDL of acute coronary syndrome (ACS) compared to stable angina (SA) patients with/without hyperglycemia, and evaluate comparatively the functional effect of these sera on the processing machinery proteins (Drosha, DGCR8, Dicer) and miRNAs production in human macrophages. MiRNAs levels in sera and HDL from 35 SA and 72 ACS patients and 30 healthy subjects were measured by using microRNA TaqMan assays. MiR-223, miR-92a, miR-486, miR-122, miR-125a and miR-146a levels were higher in the hyperglycemic ACS compared to normoglycemic sera. MiR-223 and miR-486 prevailed in HDL2, while miR-92a predominated in HDL3, all three miRNAs discriminating between ACS and SA patients; their levels were increased in HDL from hyperglycemic ACS patients versus normoglycemic ones. The incubation of human macrophages with sera from ACS and SA patients showed that all patients’ sera induced an increase of Drosha, DGCR8 and Dicer expressions and of selected miRNAs levels compared to control sera, the effect being higher in the case of hyperglycemic versus normoglycemic ACS sera. The addition of glucose to SA and ACS sera increased Drosha, DGCR8 and Dicer expression and miRNAs levels in the exposed macrophages. In conclusion, hyperglycemia is associated with increased miR-223, miR-92a, miR-486 levels in HDL, which discriminate between ACS and SA patients. Exposure of human macrophages to ACS compared to SA sera determines the upregulation of Drosha, DGCR8 and Dicer expression and the increase of selected miRNAs production, the effect being augmented by an increased glucose concentration. PMID:27519051

  16. Hyperglycemia Determines Increased Specific MicroRNAs Levels in Sera and HDL of Acute Coronary Syndrome Patients and Stimulates MicroRNAs Production in Human Macrophages.

    PubMed

    Simionescu, Natalia; Niculescu, Loredan S; Carnuta, Mihaela G; Sanda, Gabriela M; Stancu, Camelia S; Popescu, Andreea C; Popescu, Mihaela R; Vlad, Adelina; Dimulescu, Doina R; Simionescu, Maya; Sima, Anca V

    2016-01-01

    We aimed to determine the levels of microRNAs (miRNAs) in sera and HDL of acute coronary syndrome (ACS) compared to stable angina (SA) patients with/without hyperglycemia, and evaluate comparatively the functional effect of these sera on the processing machinery proteins (Drosha, DGCR8, Dicer) and miRNAs production in human macrophages. MiRNAs levels in sera and HDL from 35 SA and 72 ACS patients and 30 healthy subjects were measured by using microRNA TaqMan assays. MiR-223, miR-92a, miR-486, miR-122, miR-125a and miR-146a levels were higher in the hyperglycemic ACS compared to normoglycemic sera. MiR-223 and miR-486 prevailed in HDL2, while miR-92a predominated in HDL3, all three miRNAs discriminating between ACS and SA patients; their levels were increased in HDL from hyperglycemic ACS patients versus normoglycemic ones. The incubation of human macrophages with sera from ACS and SA patients showed that all patients' sera induced an increase of Drosha, DGCR8 and Dicer expressions and of selected miRNAs levels compared to control sera, the effect being higher in the case of hyperglycemic versus normoglycemic ACS sera. The addition of glucose to SA and ACS sera increased Drosha, DGCR8 and Dicer expression and miRNAs levels in the exposed macrophages. In conclusion, hyperglycemia is associated with increased miR-223, miR-92a, miR-486 levels in HDL, which discriminate between ACS and SA patients. Exposure of human macrophages to ACS compared to SA sera determines the upregulation of Drosha, DGCR8 and Dicer expression and the increase of selected miRNAs production, the effect being augmented by an increased glucose concentration. PMID:27519051

  17. Management of the four waters at micro level by considering the social and economic backwardness for sustainable development using remote sensing & gis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perni, Venkateswarlu

    As we enter the third millennium, we are witnessing a gale of bewildering change and transformation. Communication is well on its way to becoming instant. Knowledge based processes and an electronic network blankets the globe. And yet, there are certain things that never change, like for instance, the basic needs, of which water is most important. While in the past wars were fought over territory, markets and access to resources, future wars in the new millennium are likely to be fought over access to water for domestic, agricultural and industrial purposes. Water that most abundant of natural resources, is also very scarce in its usable form in most places on earth. The critical challenge facing arid and semi-arid areas will be to provide enough water for domestic and sustainable agricultural purposes. Already 22 countries have renewable water resources of less than one thousand cubic meters per capita, dangerously little in years of rain scarcity. With ever increasing pressure of human population, there is severe stress on water resources. This dangerous situation can still be reversed through efficient rainwater harvesting and judicious utilization by the local community. And the best socio-physical unit for such resource management is the watershed. The present study deals with the application of Remote sensing and Geographical Information systems techniques for the generation of an alternative land use/land cover practice with due consideration to the social and economic backwardness of the different ethnic groups besides protecting the long term carrying capacity of the eco-system through the integrated micro-level management of the four waters concept. The Remote sensing data used is IRS-IC-LISS-III imagery and ERDAS / IMAGINE 8.3 GIS software. Landuse/Landcover, Hydro-geomorphology, Soil map etc are generated by interpreting the satellite data and with necessary ground check. The slope map and drainage maps are generated with the help of 1:50,000 scale

  18. Management of the four waters at micro level by considering the social and economic backwardness for sustainable development using remote sensing & gis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perni, Venkateswarlu

    As we enter the third millennium, we are witnessing a gale of bewildering change and transformation. Communication is well on its way to becoming instant. Knowledge based processes and an electronic network blankets the globe. And yet, there are certain things that never change, like for instance, the basic needs, of which water is most important. While in the past wars were fought over territory, markets and access to resources, future wars in the new millennium are likely to be fought over access to water for domestic, agricultural and industrial purposes. Water that most abundant of natural resources, is also very scarce in its usable form in most places on earth. The critical challenge facing arid and semi-arid areas will be to provide enough water for domestic and sustainable agricultural purposes. Already 22 countries have renewable water resources of less than one thousand cubic meters per capita, dangerously little in years of rain scarcity. With ever increasing pressure of human population, there is severe stress on water resources. This dangerous situation can still be reversed through efficient rainwater harvesting and judicious utilization by the local community. And the best socio-physical unit for such resource management is the watershed. The present study deals with the application of Remote sensing and Geographical Information systems techniques for the generation of an alternative land use/land cover practice with due consideration to the social and economic backwardness of the different ethnic groups besides protecting the long term carrying capacity of the eco-system through the integrated micro-level management of the four waters concept. The Remote sensing data used is IRS-IC-LISS-III imagery and ERDAS / IMAGINE 8.3 GIS software. Landuse/Landcover, Hydro-geomorphology, Soil map etc are generated by interpreting the satellite data and with necessary ground check. The slope map and drainage maps are generated with the help of 1:50,000 scale

  19. Knowledge Integration to Make Decisions About Complex Systems: Sustainability of Energy Production from Agriculture

    SciTech Connect

    Danuso, Francesco

    2008-06-18

    A major bottleneck for improving the governance of complex systems, rely on our ability to integrate different forms of knowledge into a decision support system (DSS). Preliminary aspects are the classification of different types of knowledge (a priori or general, a posteriori or specific, with uncertainty, numerical, textual, algorithmic, complete/incomplete, etc.), the definition of ontologies for knowledge management and the availability of proper tools like continuous simulation models, event driven models, statistical approaches, computational methods (neural networks, evolutionary optimization, rule based systems etc.) and procedure for textual documentation. Following these views at University of Udine, a computer language (SEMoLa, Simple, Easy Modelling Language) for knowledge integration has been developed. SEMoLa can handle models, data, metadata and textual knowledge; it implements and extends the system dynamics ontology (Forrester, 1968; Joergensen, 1994) in which systems are modeled by the concepts of material, group, state, rate, parameter, internal and external events and driving variables. As an example, a SEMoLa model to improve management and sustainability (economical, energetic, environmental) of the agricultural farms is presented. The model (X-Farm) simulates a farm in which cereal and forage yield, oil seeds, milk, calves and wastes can be sold or reused. X-Farm is composed by integrated modules describing fields (crop and soil), feeds and materials storage, machinery management, manpower management, animal husbandry, economic and energetic balances, seed oil extraction, manure and wastes management, biogas production from animal wastes and biomasses.

  20. Food system advances towards more nutritious and sustainable mantou production in China.

    PubMed

    Hu, Xinzhong; Sheng, Xialu; Liu, Liu; Ma, Zhen; Li, Xiaoping; Zhao, Wuqi

    2015-01-01

    Mantou, a traditional Chinese food, is widely consumed in the North China due to its nutritional value and good mouth-feel. However, its current family-style production is impeded due to short shelf-life caused by mold and starch retrogradation. The current packaging and storage methods are not efficient enough for mantou preservation. Recently, a novel, hot online package technology has attracted attention due to its high processing efficiency and low cost. Most importantly, by using this methodology, secondary contamination by microbes can be avoided and starch retrogradation can be markedly delayed, with mantou shelf-life under room temperature extended from a few to at least 90 days without any additives. In this review, the mechanisms of mantou quality deterioration are explained and the advantages of hot package technology addressed and compared with other packaging methods, such as frozen chain storage. In this way, not only wheat, but also other grains (including whole-grains) and ingredients may be mantou constituents, to enhance nutrition of traditional mantou. There is now a technological opportunity for mantou to become a more nutritious, sustainable and affordable foodstuff in local communities.

  1. Knowledge Integration to Make Decisions About Complex Systems: Sustainability of Energy Production from Agriculture

    ScienceCinema

    Danuso, Francesco [University of Udine, Italy

    2016-07-12

    A major bottleneck for improving the governance of complex systems, rely on our ability to integrate different forms of knowledge into a decision support system (DSS). Preliminary aspects are the classification of different types of knowledge (a priori or general, a posteriori or specific, with uncertainty, numerical, textual, algorithmic, complete/incomplete, etc.), the definition of ontologies for knowledge management and the availability of proper tools like continuous simulation models, event driven models, statistical approaches, computational methods (neural networks, evolutionary optimization, rule based systems etc.) and procedure for textual documentation. Following these views at University of Udine, a computer language (SEMoLa, Simple, Easy Modelling Language) for knowledge integration has been developed.  SEMoLa can handle models, data, metadata and textual knowledge; it implements and extends the system dynamics ontology (Forrester, 1968; Jørgensen, 1994) in which systems are modelled by the concepts of material, group, state, rate, parameter, internal and external events and driving variables. As an example, a SEMoLa model to improve management and sustainability (economical, energetic, environmental) of the agricultural farms is presented. The model (X-Farm) simulates a farm in which cereal and forage yield, oil seeds, milk, calves and wastes can be sold or reused. X-Farm is composed by integrated modules describing fields (crop and soil), feeds and materials storage, machinery management, manpower  management, animal husbandry, economic and energetic balances, seed oil extraction, manure and wastes management, biogas production from animal wastes and biomasses.

  2. Phyto-products may be essential for sustainability and implementation of phytoremediation.

    PubMed

    Bañuelos, G S

    2006-11-01

    Interest in selenium pollution and remediation technology has escalated during the past two decades. Although not known to be essential for plants, selenium is essential but could be toxic for humans and animals, depending on its concentration. A major selenium controversy in the 1980's emerged in California when the general public and scientific community became aware of selenium's potential as an environmental contaminant. After extensive research on several strategies to reduce loads of mobile Se for entering the agricultural ecosystem a plant-based technology, defined as 'phytoremediation' received increasing recognition, as a low-cost environmentally friendly approach for managing soluble Se in the soil and water environment. Successful long-term field remediation of Se by plants is, however, dependent upon acceptance and widespread use by growers, who are also concerned about potential commercial value from using the plant-based technology. Obtaining products with economic value from plants used in the cleanup of soil would certainly be an additional benefit to phytoremediation, which could help sustain its long-term use.

  3. Land-Use Analysis of Croplands for Sustainable Food and Energy Production in the United States

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zumkehr, Andrew Lee

    Energy security and environmental sustainability are major concerns to many in the U.S. Energy from biomass has been proposed as a strategy to help meet future energy needs; however, widespread cultivation for biofuels could have significant impacts on food security and the environment. One solution to minimizing the impacts of biofuel cultivation is to limit production to abandoned croplands where competition from food crops and environmental degradation will be minimized. Here I estimate the spatial distribution of historical U.S. cropland areas from 1850 to 2000 and subsequently calculate abandoned cropland areas for the year 2000. From this data I estimate the potential biomass energy that could be obtained from abandoned croplands. I also estimate the potential for biomass energy to contribute to a renewable energy system consisting of wind and solar power by meeting seasonal energy storage needs that are a result of the intermittent nature of renewable energy sources. Lastly, I use the historical cropland areas result to estimate the ability of U.S. croplands to supply food to local populations at the county level.

  4. Food system advances towards more nutritious and sustainable mantou production in China.

    PubMed

    Hu, Xinzhong; Sheng, Xialu; Liu, Liu; Ma, Zhen; Li, Xiaoping; Zhao, Wuqi

    2015-01-01

    Mantou, a traditional Chinese food, is widely consumed in the North China due to its nutritional value and good mouth-feel. However, its current family-style production is impeded due to short shelf-life caused by mold and starch retrogradation. The current packaging and storage methods are not efficient enough for mantou preservation. Recently, a novel, hot online package technology has attracted attention due to its high processing efficiency and low cost. Most importantly, by using this methodology, secondary contamination by microbes can be avoided and starch retrogradation can be markedly delayed, with mantou shelf-life under room temperature extended from a few to at least 90 days without any additives. In this review, the mechanisms of mantou quality deterioration are explained and the advantages of hot package technology addressed and compared with other packaging methods, such as frozen chain storage. In this way, not only wheat, but also other grains (including whole-grains) and ingredients may be mantou constituents, to enhance nutrition of traditional mantou. There is now a technological opportunity for mantou to become a more nutritious, sustainable and affordable foodstuff in local communities. PMID:26078235

  5. Proposal on a sustainable strategy to avoid point source pollution of water with plant protection products.

    PubMed

    Mestdagh, Inge; Bonicelli, Bernard; Laplana, Ramon; Roettele, Manfred

    2009-01-01

    Based on the results and lessons learned from the TOPPS project (Training the Operators to prevent Pollution from Point Sources), a proposal on a sustainable strategy to avoid point source pollution from Plant Protection Products (PPPs) was made. Within this TOPPS project (2005-2008), stakeholders were interviewed and research and analysis were done in 6 pilot catchment areas (BE, FR, DE, DK, IT, PL). Next, there was a repeated survey on operators' perception and opinion to measure changes resulting from TOPPS activities and good and bad practices were defined based on the Best Management Practices (risk analysis). Aim of the proposal is to suggest a strategy considering the differences between countries which can be implemented on Member State level in order to avoid PPP pollution of water through point sources. The methodology used for the up-scaLing proposal consists of the analysis of the current situation, a gap analysis, a consistency analysis and organisational structures for implementation. The up-scaling proposal focuses on the behaviour of the operators, on the equipment and infrastructure available with the operators. The proposal defines implementation structures to support correct behaviour through the development and updating of Best Management Practices (BMPs) and through the transfer and the implementation of these BMPs. Next, the proposal also defines requirements for the improvement of equipment and infrastructure based on the defined key factors related to point source pollution. It also contains cost estimates for technical and infrastructure upgrades to comply with BMPs.

  6. Sustainable production of pectin from lime peel by high hydrostatic pressure treatment.

    PubMed

    Naghshineh, Mahsa; Olsen, Karsten; Georgiou, Constantinos A

    2013-01-15

    The application of high hydrostatic pressure technology for enzymatic extraction of pectin was evaluated. Cellulase and xylanase under five different combinations (cellulase/xylanase: 50/0, 50/25, 50/50, 25/50, and 0/50 U/g lime peel) at ambient pressure, 100 and 200 MPa were used to extract pectin from dried lime peel. Extraction yield, galacturonic acid (GalA) content, average molecular weight (M(w,ave)), intrinsic viscosity [η](w), and degree of esterification (DE) were compared to those parameters obtained for pectins extracted using acid and aqueous processes. Pressure level, type and concentration of enzyme significantly (p<0.05) influenced yield and DE of pectin. Enzyme and high pressure extraction resulted in yields which were significantly (p<0.05) higher than those using acid and aqueous extraction. Although pressure-induced enzymatic treatment improves pectin yield, it does not have any significant effect on M(w,ave) and [η](w) of pectin extracts indicating the potential of high pressure treatment for enzymatic pectin production as a novel and sustainable process.

  7. Knowledge Integration to Make Decisions About Complex Systems: Sustainability of Energy Production from Agriculture

    SciTech Connect

    Danuso, Francesco

    2008-06-18

    A major bottleneck for improving the governance of complex systems, rely on our ability to integrate different forms of knowledge into a decision support system (DSS). Preliminary aspects are the classification of different types of knowledge (a priori or general, a posteriori or specific, with uncertainty, numerical, textual, algorithmic, complete/incomplete, etc.), the definition of ontologies for knowledge management and the availability of proper tools like continuous simulation models, event driven models, statistical approaches, computational methods (neural networks, evolutionary optimization, rule based systems etc.) and procedure for textual documentation. Following these views at University of Udine, a computer language (SEMoLa, Simple, Easy Modelling Language) for knowledge integration has been developed.  SEMoLa can handle models, data, metadata and textual knowledge; it implements and extends the system dynamics ontology (Forrester, 1968; Jørgensen, 1994) in which systems are modelled by the concepts of material, group, state, rate, parameter, internal and external events and driving variables. As an example, a SEMoLa model to improve management and sustainability (economical, energetic, environmental) of the agricultural farms is presented. The model (X-Farm) simulates a farm in which cereal and forage yield, oil seeds, milk, calves and wastes can be sold or reused. X-Farm is composed by integrated modules describing fields (crop and soil), feeds and materials storage, machinery management, manpower  management, animal husbandry, economic and energetic balances, seed oil extraction, manure and wastes management, biogas production from animal wastes and biomasses.

  8. Product Lifecycle Management and the Quest for Sustainable Space Exploration Solutions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Caruso, Pamela W.; Dumbacher, Daniel L.

    2010-01-01

    Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) is an outcome of lean thinking to eliminate waste and increase productivity. PLM is inextricably tied to the systems engineering business philosophy, coupled with a methodology by which personnel, processes and practices, and information technology combine to form an architecture platform for product design, development, manufacturing, operations, and decommissioning. In this model, which is being implemented by the Engineering Directorate at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA's) Marshall Space Flight Center, total lifecycle costs are important variables for critical decisionmaking. With the ultimate goal to deliver quality products that meet or exceed requirements on time and within budget, PLM is a powerful tool to shape everything from engineering trade studies and testing goals, to integrated vehicle operations and retirement scenarios. This paper will demonstrate how the Engineering Directorate is implementing PLM as part of an overall strategy to deliver safe, reliable, and affordable space exploration solutions. It has been 30 years since the United States fielded the Space Shuttle. The next generation space transportation system requires a paradigm shift such that digital tools and knowledge management, which are central elements of PLM, are used consistently to maximum effect. The outcome is a better use of scarce resources, along with more focus on stakeholder and customer requirements, as a new portfolio of enabling tools becomes second nature to the workforce. This paper will use the design and manufacturing processes, which have transitioned to digital-based activities, to show how PLM supports the comprehensive systems engineering and integration function. It also will go through a launch countdown scenario where an anomaly is detected to show how the virtual vehicle created from paperless processes will help solve technical challenges and improve the likelihood of launching on schedule, with

  9. Exploring the sustainability of industrial production and energy generation with a model system

    EPA Science Inventory

    The importance and complexity of sustainability has been well recognized and a formal study of sustainability based on system theory approaches is imperative as many of the relationships between the various components of the system could be non-linear, intertwined, and non-intuit...

  10. 3 CFR - Driving Innovation and Creating Jobs in Rural America Through Biobased and Sustainable Product...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... education and outreach to program, technical, and contracting personnel, and to purchase card holders on Bio... biobased acquisition as part of the sustainable acquisition goals and milestones in the Strategic Sustainability Performance Plan required by section 8 of Executive Order 13514. (b) As required by section...

  11. Sustainable clinical research, health economic aspects and medical marketing: drivers of product innovation.

    PubMed

    Haschke, Ferdinand; Klassen-Wigger, Petra

    2010-01-01

    Marketing-driven innovation in the field of pediatric nutrition, in particular in the infant formula segment is not sustainable. New benefits of products must be scientifically proven and safety and efficacy of new formulae established in clinical trials. The scientific innovation process of three infant formulae is described. Improvement in protein quality allowed to reduce the protein concentration in whey-based infant formula. Weight gain and BMI of infants fed those formulae corresponds to breastfed infants and is lower than in infants fed traditional formulae with higher protein concentration. A meta-analysis indicates associations between rapid weight gain in infancy and obesity later in life. If infants cannot be exclusively breastfed until 4-6 months of age, feeding low-protein formulae may contribute to positive long-term health outcome with potentially important health economic effects. A partially hydrolyzed whey based formula for prevention of allergic symptoms in children with hereditary risk for allergic diseases was developed more than 25 years ago. The most recent meta-analysis which included 15 randomized clinical trials indicates that the risk of all allergic diseases and atopic dermatitis/eczema is significantly reduced in infants at risk when the partially hydrolyzed formula is fed. The partially hydrolyzed formula had the same protective effect as casein-based high-degree extensively hydrolyzed formula. Because of substantial price differences between the two formulae, feeding the partially hydrolyzed whey formula is cost saving. Hypoallergenic claims can be made in many countries, and international nutrition committees have positively commented the preventive effect of those formulae. Acidified formulae have been widely used during the last decade in replacement feeding programs for infants whose mothers are HIV positive. The formula was innovated by improving whey protein quality and lowering protein concentration. The bacteriostatic

  12. Renewable energy from biomass: a sustainable option? - Hydrogen production from alcohols

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balla, Zoltán; Kith, Károly; Tamás, András; Nagy, Orsolya

    2015-04-01

    Sustainable development requires us to find new energy sources instead of fossil fuels. One possibility is the hydrogen fuel cell, which uses significantly more efficient than the current combustion engines. The task of the hydrogen is clean, carbon-free renewable energy sources to choose in the future by growing degree. Hungary can play a role in the renewable energy sources of biomass as a renewable biomass annually mass of about 350 to 360 million tons. The biomass is only a very small proportion of fossil turn carbonaceous materials substitution, while we may utilize alternative energy sources as well. To the hydrogen production from biomass, the first step of the chemical transformations of chemical bonds are broken, which is always activation energy investment needs. The methanol and ethanol by fermentation from different agricultural products is relatively easy to produce, so these can be regarded as renewable energy carriers of. The ethanol can be used directly, and used in several places in the world are mixed with the petrol additive. This method is the disadvantage that the anhydrous alcohol is to be used in the combustion process in the engine more undesired by-products may be formed, and the fuel efficiency of the engine is significantly lower than the efficiency of the fuel cells. More useful to produce hydrogen from the alcohol and is used in a fuel cell electric power generation. Particularly attractive option for the so-called on-board reforming of alcohols, that happens immediately when the vehicle hydrogen production. It does not need a large tank of hydrogen, because the hydrogen produced would be directly to the fuel cell. The H2 tank limit use of its high cost, the significant loss evaporation, the rare-station network, production capacity and service background and lack of opportunity to refuel problems. These can be overcome, if the hydrogen in the vehicle is prepared. As volume even 700 bar only about half the H2 pressure gas can be stored

  13. Sustainable Development.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Auerbach, Raymond

    1994-01-01

    Discusses South African national development priorities, sustainable development, and the future of agriculture and presents three scenarios of possible national action: production for sale and export, household food security, and conservation of natural resources. (MKR)

  14. Rainbow smelt: the unusual case of cryoprotection by sustained glycerol production in an aquatic animal.

    PubMed

    Driedzic, William R

    2015-07-01

    Rainbow smelt flourish at -1.8 °C, the freezing point of sea water. An antifreeze protein contributes to freeze point depression but, more importantly, cryoprotection is due to an elevation in osmotic pressure, by the accumulation of glycerol. The lower the water temperature, the higher the plasma glycerol with levels recorded as high as 400 mmol l(-1). Glycerol freely diffuses out in direct relation to the glycerol concentration and fish may lose as much as 15% of their glycerol reserve per day. Glycerol levels decrease from a maximum in February/March while water temperature is still sub-zero. The decrease in glycerol may respond to a photoperiod signal as opposed to initiation which is triggered by low temperature. The initial increase in glycerol level is supported by liver glycogen but high sustained glycerol level is dependent upon dietary carbohydrate and protein. The metabolic pathways leading to glycerol involve flux from glycogen/glucose to the level of dihydroxyacetone phosphate (DHAP) via the initial part of glycolysis and from amino acids via a truncated gluconeogenesis again to the level of DHAP. DHAP in turn is converted to glycerol 3-phosphate (G3P) and then directly to glycerol. The key to directing DHAP to G3P is a highly active glycerol 3-P dehydrogenase. G3P is converted directly to glycerol via G3P phosphatase, the rate-limiting step in the process. The transition to glycerol production is associated with increased activities of enzymes at key loci in the top part of glycogenolysis/glycolysis. Curtailment of the final section of glycolysis may reside at the level of pyruvate oxidation with an inactivation of pyruvate dehydrogenase (PDH) driven by increased levels of PDH kinase. Enzymes associated with amino acid trafficking are elevated as is the pivotal enzyme phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase. PMID:25921795

  15. Local Sustained Delivery of 25-Hydroxyvitamin D3 for Production of Antimicrobial Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Jiang; Chen, Guojun; Shuler, Franklin D.; Wang, Chi-Hwa; Xie, Jingwei

    2015-01-01

    Purpose This study seeks to develop fiber membranes for local sustained delivery of 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 to induce the expression and secretion of LL-37 at or near the surgical site, which provides a novel therapeutic approach to minimize the risk of infections. Methods 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 loaded poly(L-lactide) (PLA) and poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL) fibers were produced by electrospinning. The morphology of obtained fibers was characterized using atomic force microscope (AFM) and scanning electron microscope (SEM). 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 releasing kinetics were quantified by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) kit. The expression of cathelicidin (hCAP 18) and LL-37 was analyzed by immunofluorescence staining and ELISA kit. The antibacterial activity test was conducted by incubating pseudomonas aeruginosa in a monocytes’ lysis solution. Results AFM images suggest that the surface of PCL fibers is smooth, however, the surface of PLA fibers is relatively rough, in particular, after encapsulation of 25-hydroxyvitamin D3. The duration of 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 release can last more than 4 weeks for all the tested samples. Plasma treatment can promote the release rate of 25-hydroxyvitamin D3. Human keratinocytes and monocytes express significantly higher levels of hCAP18/LL-37 after incubation with plasma treated and 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 loaded PCL fibers than the cells incubated with around 10 times amount of free drug. After incubation with this fiber formulation for 5 days LL-37 in the lysis solutions of U937 cells can effectively kill the bacteria. Conclusions plasma treated and 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 loaded PCL fibers induce significantly higher levels of antimicrobial peptide production in human keratinocytes and monocytes without producing cytotoxicity. PMID:25773720

  16. Good Policy Follows Good Science Using Criteria and Indicators for Assessing Sustainable Biofuel Production

    SciTech Connect

    Hecht, Alan; Shaw, Denice; Bruins, Randy; Dale, Virginia H; Kline, Keith L; Chen, Alice

    2009-01-01

    Developing scientific criteria and indicators should play a critical role in charting a sustainable path for the rapidly developing biofuel industry. The challenge ahead in developing such criteria and indicators is to address the limitations on data and modeling.

  17. Good policy follows good science: using criteria and indicators for assessing sustainable biofuel production

    SciTech Connect

    Hecht, Alan D; Shaw, Denice; Bruins, Randy; Dale, Virginia H; Kline, Keith L; Chen, Alice

    2009-01-01

    Developing scientific criteria and indicators should play a critical role in charting a sustainable path for the rapidly developing biofuel industry. The challenge ahead in developing such criteria and indicators is to address the limitations on data and modeling.

  18. Bioaugmentation of Mesorhizobium cicer, Pseudomonas spp. and Piriformospora indica for Sustainable Chickpea Production.

    PubMed

    Mansotra, Pallavi; Sharma, Poonam; Sharma, Sunita

    2015-07-01

    Chickpea establishes symbiotic association with Mesorhizobium to fulfill its nitrogen (N) requirement. Integrating chickpea rhizosphere with potential native mesorhizobia and other plant growth promoting microorganisms can contribute multiple benefits to plants. The present investigation was undertaken to study interactions among Piriformospora indica (PI) with potential plant growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) viz. Pseudomonas argentinensis (LPGPR1), Pseudomonas sp. (LPGPR2) along with national check Pseudomons sp. (LK884) and Mesorhizobium cicer (LGR33, MR) to examine the synergistic effect of consortium for improving growth, symbiotic efficiency, nutrient acquisition and yield in two chickpea (Cicer arietinum L.) varieties viz. desi PBG1 and kabuli BG1053. In-vitro, seed germination with consortium MR + PI + LPGPR1 was the best compatible treatment followed by MR + PI + LK884 and MR + PI + LPGPR2. Significant improvement in the growth, symbiotic parameters and grain yield was observed with MR + PI + LPGPR1 and MR + PI + LK884 treatments. Significantly high chlorophyll and leghaemoglobin content was recorded with MR + PI + LPGPR1 (1.57 and 1.64 mg g(-1) fresh weight of leaves and 5.19 and 4.39 mg/g(-1) fresh weight of nodules) in desi PBG1 and kabuli BG1053 chickpea varieties, respectively. At 90 DAS, MR + PI + LPGPR1 treatment significantly improved nodule dry weight (ranged between 84.0 and 141.7 mg plant(-1)) as compared to MR alone treatment (ranged between 62.3 and 123.3 mg plant(-1)). Data revealed significant increase in total nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) content of shoot with MR + PI + LPGPR1 by 1.2 and 1.5 fold, respectively over MR alone treatment. On the basis of overall mean, MR + PI + LPGPR1 significantly improved the yield by 8.2 % over Mesorhizobium alone application. It seems from foregoing study that tripartite combination of different micro-organisms can be

  19. Sustainability Impact Assessment of two forest-based bioenergy production systems related to mitigation and adaption to Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gartzia-Bengoetxea, Nahia; Arias-González, Ander; Tuomasjukka, Diana

    2016-04-01

    New forest management strategies are necessary to resist and adapt to Climate Change (CC) and to maintain ecosystem functions such as forest productivity, water storage and biomass production. The increased use of forest-based biomass for energy generation as well as the application of combustion or pyrolysis co-products such as ash or biochar back into forest soils is being suggested as a CC mitigation and adaptation strategy while trying to fulfil the targets of both: (i) Europe 2020 growth strategy in relation to CC and energy sustainability and (ii) EU Action Plan for the Circular Economy. The energy stored in harvested biomass can be released through combustion and used for energy generation to enable national energy security (reduced oil dependence) and the substitution of fossil fuel by renewable biomass can decrease the emission of greenhouse gases.In the end, the wood-ash produced in the process can return to the forest soil to replace the nutrients exported by harvesting. Another way to use biomass in this green circular framework is to pyrolyse it. Pyrolysis of the biomass produce a carbon-rich product (biochar) that can increase carbon sequestration in the soils and liquid and gas co-products of biomass pyrolysis can be used for energy generation or other fuel use thereby offsetting fossil fuel consumption and so avoiding greenhouse gas emissions. Both biomass based energy systems differ in the amount of energy produced, in the co-product (biochar or wood ash) returned to the field, and in societal impacts they have. The Tool for Sustainability Impact Assessment (ToSIA) was used for modelling both energy production systems. ToSIA integrates several different methods, and allows a quantification and objective comparison of economic, environmental and social impacts in a sustainability impact assessment for different decision alternatives/scenarios. We will interpret the results in order to support the bioenergy planning in temperate forests under the

  20. Effects of Harvest on the Sustainability and Leaf Productivity of Populations of Two Palm Species in Maya Homegardens

    PubMed Central

    Martínez-Ballesté, Andrea; Martorell, Carlos

    2015-01-01

    Traditional management practices are usually thought to be sustainable. The Maya manage Sabal (Arecaceae) palms in homegardens, using their leaves for thatching. The sustainability of such production systems depends on the long-term persistence of palm populations, whereas resource availability also depends on the number of leaves on individual palms. We examined how leaf harvest affects Sabal yapa and S. mexicana population growth rates (λ) and leaf production, comparing traditional and alternative harvest regimes in terms of sustainability and productivity. Demographic, harvest and leaf production data were recorded for three years in two homegardens. We used general integral projection models linked to leaf-production models to describe population dynamics and productivity. Harvest had no effect on S. yapa’s vital rates or on λ, but it changed the growth rate of individuals of S. mexicana, with a negligible impact on λ. Homegardens affected λ values, reflecting the species’ ecological affinities. S. mexicana, introduced from mesic forests, required watering and shade; therefore, its population declined rapidly in the homegarden that lacked both water and shade. The λ of the xerophilic S. yapa was slightly larger without watering than with watering. Palms usually compensated for leaf extraction, causing the number of leaves harvested per individual to increase with harvest intensity. Nevertheless, traditional management is relatively mild, allowing standing leaves to accumulate but reducing the homegarden’s yield. Apparently, the Maya do not seek to maximize annual production but to ensure the availability of large numbers of leaves in homegardens. These leaves may then be used when the entire roof of a hut needs to be replaced every few years. PMID:25803029

  1. Effects of harvest on the sustainability and leaf productivity of populations of two palm species in Maya homegardens.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Ballesté, Andrea; Martorell, Carlos

    2015-01-01

    Traditional management practices are usually thought to be sustainable. The Maya manage Sabal (Arecaceae) palms in homegardens, using their leaves for thatching. The sustainability of such production systems depends on the long-term persistence of palm populations, whereas resource availability also depends on the number of leaves on individual palms. We examined how leaf harvest affects Sabal yapa and S. mexicana population growth rates (λ) and leaf production, comparing traditional and alternative harvest regimes in terms of sustainability and productivity. Demographic, harvest and leaf production data were recorded for three years in two homegardens. We used general integral projection models linked to leaf-production models to describe population dynamics and productivity. Harvest had no effect on S. yapa's vital rates or on λ, but it changed the growth rate of individuals of S. mexicana, with a negligible impact on λ. Homegardens affected λ values, reflecting the species' ecological affinities. S. mexicana, introduced from mesic forests, required watering and shade; therefore, its population declined rapidly in the homegarden that lacked both water and shade. The λ of the xerophilic S. yapa was slightly larger without watering than with watering. Palms usually compensated for leaf extraction, causing the number of leaves harvested per individual to increase with harvest intensity. Nevertheless, traditional management is relatively mild, allowing standing leaves to accumulate but reducing the homegarden's yield. Apparently, the Maya do not seek to maximize annual production but to ensure the availability of large numbers of leaves in homegardens. These leaves may then be used when the entire roof of a hut needs to be replaced every few years.

  2. Development of a Low Input and sustainable Switchgrass Feedstock Production System Utilizing Beneficial Bacterial Endophytes

    SciTech Connect

    Mei, Chuansheng; Nowak, Jerzy; Seiler, John

    2014-10-24

    Switchgrass represents a promising feedstock crop for US energy sustainability. However, its broad utilization for bioenergy requires improvements of biomass yields and stress tolerance. In this DOE funded project, we have been working on harnessing beneficial bacterial endophytes to enhance switchgrass performance and to develop a low input feedstock production system for marginal lands that do not compete with the production of food crops. We have demonstrated that one of most promising plant growth-promoting bacterial endophytes, Burkholderia phytofirmans strain PsJN, is able to colonize roots and significantly promote growth of switchgrass cv. Alamo under in vitro, growth chamber, greenhouse, as well as field conditions. Furthermore, PsJN bacterization improved growth and development of switchgrass seedlings, significantly stimulated plant root and shoot growth, and tiller number in the field, and enhanced biomass accumulation on both poor (p<0.001) and rich (p<0.05) soils, with more effective stimulation of plant growth in low fertility soil. Plant physiology measurements showed that PsJN inoculated Alamo had consistently lower transpiration, lower stomatal conductance, and higher water use efficiency in greenhouse conditions. These physiological changes may significantly contribute to the recorded growth enhancement. PsJN inoculation rapidly results in an increase in photosynthetic rates which contributes to the advanced growth and development. Some evidence suggests that this initial growth advantage decreases with time when resources are not limited such as in greenhouse studies. Additionally, better drought resistance and drought hardening were observed in PsJN inoculated switchgrass. Using the DOE-funded switchgrass EST microarray, in a collaboration with the Genomics Core Facility at the Noble Foundation, we have determined gene expression profile changes in both responsive switchgrass cv. Alamo and non-responsive cv. Cave-in-Rock (CR) following Ps

  3. Stepping stone or stumbling block? Mode 2 knowledge production in sustainability science.

    PubMed

    Thorén, Henrik; Breian, Line

    2016-04-01

    The concept of Mode 2 has often been seen as especially applicable to fields addressing grand challenges, such as climate change. Being a relatively new field-interdisciplinary in its approach, and focused on addressing such issues-sustainability science would appear to be a case in point. The aim of this paper is twofold: 1) to explore the perceived relation between Mode 2 and sustainability science, and 2) to advance the discussion of Mode 2 from a philosophical perspective. To address these questions we focus on three characteristic features of Mode 2: the notion of a distinct, but evolving framework; boundary crossing; and a problem solving capacity "on the move". We report the results of a survey carried out amongst leading sustainability scientists. The survey gives insight into the scientists' perception of Mode 2, their perception of their own field of sustainability science and the relation between the two. The free text answers reveal a tension within the field of sustainability science: with developments both towards Mode 1 and Mode 2 science. We conclude that the implementation of inter- and trans-disciplinarity is challenged by institutional and conceptual factors alike. PMID:26686900

  4. Stepping stone or stumbling block? Mode 2 knowledge production in sustainability science.

    PubMed

    Thorén, Henrik; Breian, Line

    2016-04-01

    The concept of Mode 2 has often been seen as especially applicable to fields addressing grand challenges, such as climate change. Being a relatively new field-interdisciplinary in its approach, and focused on addressing such issues-sustainability science would appear to be a case in point. The aim of this paper is twofold: 1) to explore the perceived relation between Mode 2 and sustainability science, and 2) to advance the discussion of Mode 2 from a philosophical perspective. To address these questions we focus on three characteristic features of Mode 2: the notion of a distinct, but evolving framework; boundary crossing; and a problem solving capacity "on the move". We report the results of a survey carried out amongst leading sustainability scientists. The survey gives insight into the scientists' perception of Mode 2, their perception of their own field of sustainability science and the relation between the two. The free text answers reveal a tension within the field of sustainability science: with developments both towards Mode 1 and Mode 2 science. We conclude that the implementation of inter- and trans-disciplinarity is challenged by institutional and conceptual factors alike.

  5. Quantification of Plasmodiophora brassicae Using a DNA-Based Soil Test Facilitates Sustainable Oilseed Rape Production.

    PubMed

    Wallenhammar, Ann-Charlotte; Gunnarson, Albin; Hansson, Fredrik; Jonsson, Anders

    2016-01-01

    Outbreaks of clubroot disease caused by the soil-borne obligate parasite Plasmodiophora brassicae are common in oilseed rape (OSR) in Sweden. A DNA-based soil testing service that identifies fields where P. brassicae poses a significant risk of clubroot infection is now commercially available. It was applied here in field surveys to monitor the prevalence of P. brassicae DNA in field soils intended for winter OSR production and winter OSR field experiments. In 2013 in Scania, prior to planting, P. brassicae DNA was detected in 60% of 45 fields on 10 of 18 farms. In 2014, P. brassicae DNA was detected in 44% of 59 fields in 14 of 36 farms, in the main winter OSR producing region in southern Sweden. P. brassicae was present indicative of a risk for >10% yield loss with susceptible cultivars (>1300 DNA copies g soil(-1)) in 47% and 44% of fields in 2013 and 2014 respectively. Furthermore, P. brassicae DNA was indicative of sites at risk of complete crop failure if susceptible cultivars were grown (>50 000 copies g(-1) soil) in 14% and 8% of fields in 2013 and 2014, respectively. A survey of all fields at Lanna research station in western Sweden showed that P. brassicae was spread throughout the farm, as only three of the fields (20%) showed infection levels below the detection limit for P.brassicae DNA, while the level was >50,000 DNA copies g(-1) soil in 20% of the fields. Soil-borne spread is of critical importance and soil scraped off footwear showed levels of up to 682 million spores g(-1) soil. Soil testing is an important tool for determining the presence of P. brassicae and providing an indication of potential yield loss, e.g., in advisory work on planning for a sustainable OSR crop rotation. This soil test is gaining acceptance as a tool that increases the likelihood of success in precision agriculture and in applied research conducted in commercial oilseed fields and at research stations. The present application highlights the importance of prevention of

  6. Efforts to improve and sustain the productive utilization of dry grasslands in Armenia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mezhunts, Bagrat; Navasardyan, Marine

    2014-05-01

    Armenia is a small mountainous country (29,743 km2) located in the South Caucasus. It lies in the sub-tropical zone and has a continental climate with hot summers (av. +250C) and cold winters (av. -60C). The average precipitation is 550 mm; in the dry-steppe zone it amounts to only 250 mm and with a rainy season in spring-early summer. Altitudinal variation (390-4,095 m) gives rise to a range of climatic zones (from semi-desert to alpine), soil types and plant communities. Besides, Armenia is situated on the crossroads of Caucasian - mesophyllous (humid) and Armeno-Iranian - xerophyllous (arid) floristic provinces, which has made it to a "biodiversity hotspot". Agriculture is important as a source of employment and for domestic food supply. The rural population (ca. 1.2 million) is largely dependent on livestock for their livelihood. The principal feed resource is extensive grasslands (60% of total agricultural lands), but past practices of uncontrolled grazing management has led to low grassland productivity and low proportion of valuable legume forages. Improvement of natural grasslands, enhancement of feed quality, prevention of soil erosion and re-establishment of vegetation cover are key socio-economic challenges and are needed to raise the livelihood of rural population in Armenia. This presentation focuses on present status and trends of dry pastureland degradation, exposed to intensive grazing, and on results from case studies to increase productivity and restore valuable forage species for sustainable use in agriculture. Three different conventional approaches have been applied in these studies including: fertilization with moderate doses of ammonium and potassium nitrate and superphosphate, over-sowing by local legume seeds and implementation of a 2-year rest period in overgrazed areas. From 1986 to 2007, the total yield (TY) in studied dry-steppe pastures decreased by 40%, while at the same time, the proportion of grasses in total yield decreased by 50

  7. Projecting future grassland productivity to assess the sustainability of potential biofuel feedstock areas in the Greater Platte River Basin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gu, Yingxin; Wylie, Bruce K.; Boyte, Stephen; Phyual, Khem

    2014-01-01

    This study projects future (e.g., 2050 and 2099) grassland productivities in the Greater Platte River Basin (GPRB) using ecosystem performance (EP, a surrogate for measuring ecosystem productivity) models and future climate projections. The EP models developed from a previous study were based on the satellite vegetation index, site geophysical and biophysical features, and weather and climate drivers. The future climate data used in this study were derived from the National Center for Atmospheric Research Community Climate System Model 3.0 ‘SRES A1B’ (a ‘middle’ emissions path). The main objective of this study is to assess the future sustainability of the potential biofuel feedstock areas identified in a previous study. Results show that the potential biofuel feedstock areas (the more mesic eastern part of the GPRB) will remain productive (i.e., aboveground grassland biomass productivity >2750 kg ha−1 year−1) with a slight increasing trend in the future. The spatially averaged EPs for these areas are 3519, 3432, 3557, 3605, 3752, and 3583 kg ha−1 year−1 for current site potential (2000–2008 average), 2020, 2030, 2040, 2050, and 2099, respectively. Therefore, the identified potential biofuel feedstock areas will likely continue to be sustainable for future biofuel development. On the other hand, grasslands identified as having no biofuel potential in the drier western part of the GPRB would be expected to stay unproductive in the future (spatially averaged EPs are 1822, 1691, 1896, 2306, 1994, and 2169 kg ha−1 year−1 for site potential, 2020, 2030, 2040, 2050, and 2099). These areas should continue to be unsuitable for biofuel feedstock development in the future. These future grassland productivity estimation maps can help land managers to understand and adapt to the expected changes in future EP in the GPRB and to assess the future sustainability and feasibility of potential biofuel feedstock areas.

  8. Dedicated industrial oilseed crops as metabolic engineering platforms for sustainable industrial feedstock production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Feedstocks for industrial applications ranging from polymers to lubricants are largely derived from petroleum, a non-renewable resource. Vegetable oils with fatty acid structures and storage forms tailored for specific industrial uses offer renewable and potentially sustainable sources of petrochemi...

  9. Crop residue is key for sustaining maximum food production and for conservation of our biosphere

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Crop residue is key in our efforts to move towards agricultural sustainability. This paper provides a quick overview of some selected references and looks at some of the newest advances related to cover crops. Several authors have described in detail the benefits derived from improving soil quality ...

  10. ARM Best Estimate Data (ARMBE) Products for Climate Science for a Sustainable Energy Future (CSSEF)

    DOE Data Explorer

    Riihimaki, Laura; Gaustad, Krista; McFarlane, Sally

    2014-06-12

    This data set was created for the Climate Science for a Sustainable Energy Future (CSSEF) model testbed project and is an extension of the hourly average ARMBE dataset to other extended facility sites and to include uncertainty estimates. Uncertainty estimates were needed in order to use uncertainty quantification (UQ) techniques with the data.

  11. Sustainable rice production and its impact on the rice value chain: A case study of rural paddy farm in Kedah

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Othman, Siti Norezam; Othman, Zakirah; Yaacob, Noorulsadiqin Azbiya; Hamid, Kamal Ab

    2016-08-01

    System of Rice Intensification (SRI) method had contributed towards environmental sustainability through improving paddy ecosystem, better sustainable economic due to improving paddy production and sales and social sustainability through local community development through community activity and health. This study aimed to find out whether the innovative practices of SRI affect the rice value chain and to determine the roles, activities of the actors in the value chain as well as challenges that impacted the value chain. Using interview as data collection method, case samples were selected from various SRI paddy site in Kedah. The findings indicated that implementing SRI practices in organic paddy cultivation had caused the value chain to be different from conventional paddy value chain in terms of actor and effect of middle man subject to the small scale paddy production. For organic rice value chain to become competitive, roles, activities and challenges were identified so that supports could be provided to the farmers and other related parties in the value chain.

  12. Effect of linoleic acid sustained-release microspheres on Microcystis aeruginosa antioxidant enzymes activity and microcystins production and release.

    PubMed

    Ni, Lixiao; Jie, Xiaoting; Wang, Peifang; Li, Shiyin; Wang, Guoxiang; Li, Yiping; Li, Yong; Acharya, Kumud

    2015-02-01

    The objective of this work was to identify the optimal dose range for good anti-algal effect of linoleic acid (LA) sustained-release microspheres and investigate their impact on the antioxidant enzymes (super oxide dismutase, Catalase and Peroxidase) activity changes of Microcystis aeruginosa, as well as the production and release of microcystins (MCs). Based on measured changes in algal cell density and inhibitory ratio (IR), the optimal dose of LA microspheres was 0.3 g L(-1) with over 90% of IR in this study. The Chlorophyll a content and antioxidant enzymes activity in the LA microspheres group decreased markedly until beyond the minimal detection limit after 16 d and 9 d, respectively. In addition, LA microspheres demonstrated no significant impact on the extracellular release of MCs during the culturing period. The amount of intracellular microcystin-LR (MC-LR) per 10(6) algal cells in LA microspheres group was highest among all groups during the whole experimental process. Under the sustained stress of LA released from LA microspheres, the LA microspheres could decrease the production and release of algal toxins. There was no increase in the total amount of MC-LR in the algal cell culture medium. These indicated that LA sustained-release microspheres represent a high degree of ecological safety and their practical applications for the treatment of water undergoing algal blooms need further study.

  13. Regulation of Vapor Pressure Deficit by Greenhouse Micro-Fog Systems Improved Growth and Productivity of Tomato via Enhancing Photosynthesis during Summer Season.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Dalong; Zhang, Zhongdian; Li, Jianming; Chang, Yibo; Du, Qingjie; Pan, Tonghua

    2015-01-01

    The role of a proposed micro-fog system in regulating greenhouse environments and enhancing tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.) productivity during summer season was studied. Experiments were carried out in a multi-span glass greenhouse, which was divided into two identical compartments involving different environments: (1) without environment control and (2) with a micro-fog system operating when the air vapor pressure deficit (VPD) of greenhouse was higher than 0.5 KPa. The micro-fog system effectively alleviated heat stress and evaporative demand in the greenhouse during summer season. The physiologically favourable environment maintained by micro-fog treatment significantly enhanced elongation of leaf and stem, which contributed to a substantial elevation of final leaf area and shoot biomass. These improvements in physiological and morphological traits resulted in around 12.3% increase of marketable tomato yield per plant. Relative growth rate (RGR) of micro-fog treatment was also significantly higher than control plants, which was mainly determined by the substantial elevation in net assimilation rate (NAR), and to a lesser extent caused by leaf area ratio (LAR). Measurement of leaf gas exchange parameters also demonstrated that micro-fog treatment significantly enhanced leaf photosynthesis capacity. Taken together, manipulation of VPD in greenhouses by micro-fog systems effectively enhanced tomato growth and productivity via improving photosynthesis during summer season. PMID:26221726

  14. Regulation of Vapor Pressure Deficit by Greenhouse Micro-Fog Systems Improved Growth and Productivity of Tomato via Enhancing Photosynthesis during Summer Season.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Dalong; Zhang, Zhongdian; Li, Jianming; Chang, Yibo; Du, Qingjie; Pan, Tonghua

    2015-01-01

    The role of a proposed micro-fog system in regulating greenhouse environments and enhancing tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.) productivity during summer season was studied. Experiments were carried out in a multi-span glass greenhouse, which was divided into two identical compartments involving different environments: (1) without environment control and (2) with a micro-fog system operating when the air vapor pressure deficit (VPD) of greenhouse was higher than 0.5 KPa. The micro-fog system effectively alleviated heat stress and evaporative demand in the greenhouse during summer season. The physiologically favourable environment maintained by micro-fog treatment significantly enhanced elongation of leaf and stem, which contributed to a substantial elevation of final leaf area and shoot biomass. These improvements in physiological and morphological traits resulted in around 12.3% increase of marketable tomato yield per plant. Relative growth rate (RGR) of micro-fog treatment was also significantly higher than control plants, which was mainly determined by the substantial elevation in net assimilation rate (NAR), and to a lesser extent caused by leaf area ratio (LAR). Measurement of leaf gas exchange parameters also demonstrated that micro-fog treatment significantly enhanced leaf photosynthesis capacity. Taken together, manipulation of VPD in greenhouses by micro-fog systems effectively enhanced tomato growth and productivity via improving photosynthesis during summer season.

  15. Regulation of Vapor Pressure Deficit by Greenhouse Micro-Fog Systems Improved Growth and Productivity of Tomato via Enhancing Photosynthesis during Summer Season

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Dalong; Zhang, Zhongdian; Li, Jianming; Chang, Yibo; Du, Qingjie; Pan, Tonghua

    2015-01-01

    The role of a proposed micro-fog system in regulating greenhouse environments and enhancing tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.) productivity during summer season was studied. Experiments were carried out in a multi-span glass greenhouse, which was divided into two identical compartments involving different environments: (1) without environment control and (2) with a micro-fog system operating when the air vapor pressure deficit (VPD) of greenhouse was higher than 0.5 KPa. The micro-fog system effectively alleviated heat stress and evaporative demand in the greenhouse during summer season. The physiologically favourable environment maintained by micro-fog treatment significantly enhanced elongation of leaf and stem, which contributed to a substantial elevation of final leaf area and shoot biomass. These improvements in physiological and morphological traits resulted in around 12.3% increase of marketable tomato yield per plant. Relative growth rate (RGR) of micro-fog treatment was also significantly higher than control plants, which was mainly determined by the substantial elevation in net assimilation rate (NAR), and to a lesser extent caused by leaf area ratio (LAR). Measurement of leaf gas exchange parameters also demonstrated that micro-fog treatment significantly enhanced leaf photosynthesis capacity. Taken together, manipulation of VPD in greenhouses by micro-fog systems effectively enhanced tomato growth and productivity via improving photosynthesis during summer season. PMID:26221726

  16. New risk indicator approach for Operators, Workers, Bystanders and Residents for a sustainable use of plant protection products.

    PubMed

    Sacchettini, Gabriele; Calliera, Maura; Marchis, Alexandru; Glass, Richard; Ellis, Clare Butler; Machera, Kyriaki; Gerritsen-Ebben, Rianda; Spanoghe, Pieter; Capri, Ettore

    2015-11-01

    In 2009, the European Union adopted the Directive on Sustainable Use of pesticides (SUD, Directive 2009/128/EC) establishing a framework for achieving a sustainable use of Plant Protection Products (PPPs) through reducing the risks and impacts of PPP use on human health and the environment, promoting integrated pest management and stimulating effective non-chemical alternatives. The core idea of the SUD is that it is necessary to monitor the use of PPPs through the implementation of an appropriate set of risk indicators to monitor progress and trends in risk reduction within the Member States. To contribute to this direction, following a comprehensive analysis of the risk (including procedures of risk assessment and risk management) and involving stakeholders in the decision process, specific toolboxes of practical indirect risk indicators of exposure of Operators, Workers, Bystanders and Residents were developed and are now available to be used by Member States (MSs) based on their specific context.

  17. Laser sustained discharge nozzle apparatus for the production of an intense beam of high kinetic energy atomic species

    DOEpatents

    Cross, Jon B.; Cremers, David A.

    1988-01-01

    Laser sustained discharge apparatus for the production of intense beams of high kinetic energy atomic species. A portion of the plasma resulting from a laser sustained continuous optical discharge which generates energetic atomic species from a gaseous source thereof is expanded through a nozzle into a region of low pressure. The expanded plasma contains a significant concentration of the high kinetic energy atomic species which may be used to investigate the interaction of surfaces therewith. In particular, O-atoms having velocities in excess of 3.5 km/s can be generated for the purpose of studying their interaction with materials in order to develop protective materials for spacecraft which are exposed to such energetic O-atoms during operation in low earth orbit.

  18. Laser sustained discharge nozzle apparatus for the production of an intense beam of high kinetic energy atomic species

    DOEpatents

    Cross, J.B.; Cremers, D.A.

    1986-01-10

    Laser sustained discharge apparatus for the production of intense beams of high kinetic energy atomic species is described. A portion of the plasma resulting from a laser sustained continuous optical discharge which generates energetic atomic species from a gaseous source thereof is expanded through a nozzle into a region of low pressure. The expanded plasma contains a significant concentration of the high kinetic energy atomic species which may be used to investigate the interaction of surfaces therewith. In particular, O-atoms having velocities in excess of 3.5 km/s can be generated for the purpose of studying their interaction with materials in order to develop protective materials for spacecraft which are exposed to such energetic O-atoms during operation in low earth orbit.

  19. Renewable and sustainable bioenergies production from palm oil mill effluent (POME): win-win strategies toward better environmental protection.

    PubMed

    Lam, Man Kee; Lee, Keat Teong

    2011-01-01

    Palm oil industry is one of the leading agricultural industries in Malaysia with average crude palm oil production of more than 13 million tonne per year. However, production of such huge amount of crude palm oil has consequently resulted to even larger amount of palm oil mill effluent (POME). POME is a highly polluting wastewater with high chemical oxygen demand (COD) and biochemical oxygen demand (BOD) in which can caused severe pollution to the environment, typically pollution to water resources. On the other hand, POME was identified as a potential source to generate renewable bioenergies such as biomethane and biohydrogen through anaerobic digestion. In other words, a combination of wastewater treatment and renewable bioenergies production would be an added advantage to the palm oil industry. In line with the world's focus on sustainability concept, such strategy should be implemented immediately to ensure palm oil is produced in an environmental friendly and sustainable manner. This review aims to discuss various technologies to convert POME to biomethane and biohydrogen in a commercial scale. Furthermore, discussion on using POME to culture microalgae for biodiesel and bioethanol production was included in the present paper as a new remedy to utilize POME with a greater beneficial return.

  20. Renewable and sustainable bioenergies production from palm oil mill effluent (POME): win-win strategies toward better environmental protection.

    PubMed

    Lam, Man Kee; Lee, Keat Teong

    2011-01-01

    Palm oil industry is one of the leading agricultural industries in Malaysia with average crude palm oil production of more than 13 million tonne per year. However, production of such huge amount of crude palm oil has consequently resulted to even larger amount of palm oil mill effluent (POME). POME is a highly polluting wastewater with high chemical oxygen demand (COD) and biochemical oxygen demand (BOD) in which can caused severe pollution to the environment, typically pollution to water resources. On the other hand, POME was identified as a potential source to generate renewable bioenergies such as biomethane and biohydrogen through anaerobic digestion. In other words, a combination of wastewater treatment and renewable bioenergies production would be an added advantage to the palm oil industry. In line with the world's focus on sustainability concept, such strategy should be implemented immediately to ensure palm oil is produced in an environmental friendly and sustainable manner. This review aims to discuss various technologies to convert POME to biomethane and biohydrogen in a commercial scale. Furthermore, discussion on using POME to culture microalgae for biodiesel and bioethanol production was included in the present paper as a new remedy to utilize POME with a greater beneficial return. PMID:20940036

  1. Micro-Raman study of copper hydroxychlorides and other corrosion products of bronze samples mimicking archaeological coins.

    PubMed

    Bertolotti, Giulia; Bersani, Danilo; Lottici, Pier Paolo; Alesiani, Marcella; Malcherek, Thomas; Schlüter, Jochen

    2012-02-01

    Three bronze samples created by CNR-ISMN (National Research Council-Institute of Nanostructured Materials) to be similar to Punic and Roman coins found in Tharros (OR, Sardinia, Italy) were studied to identify the corrosion products on their surfaces and to evaluate the reliability of the reproduction process. Micro-Raman spectroscopy was chosen to investigate the corroded surfaces because it is a non-destructive technique, it has high spatial resolution, and it gives the opportunity to discriminate between polymorphs and to correlate colour and chemical composition. A significant amount of green copper hydroxychlorides (Cu(2)(OH)(3)Cl) was detected on all the coins. Their discrimination by Raman spectroscopy was challenging because the literature on the topic is currently confusing. Thus, it was necessary to determine the characteristic peaks of atacamite, clinoatacamite, and the recently discovered anatacamite by acquiring Raman spectra of comparable natural mineral samples. Clinoatacamite, with different degrees of order in its structure, was the major component identified on the three coins. The most widespread corrosion product, besides hydroxychlorides, was the red copper oxide cuprite (Cu(2)O). Other corrosion products of the elements of the alloy (laurionite, plumbonacrite, zinc carbonate) and those resulting from burial in the soil (anatase, calcite, hematite) were also found. This study shows that identification of corrosion products, including discrimination of copper hydroxychlorides, could be accomplished by micro-Raman on valuable objects, for example archaeological findings or works of art, avoiding any damage because of extraction of samples or the use of a destructive analytical technique.

  2. A microRNA switch regulates the rise in hypothalamic GnRH production before puberty.

    PubMed

    Messina, Andrea; Langlet, Fanny; Chachlaki, Konstantina; Roa, Juan; Rasika, Sowmyalakshmi; Jouy, Nathalie; Gallet, Sarah; Gaytan, Francisco; Parkash, Jyoti; Tena-Sempere, Manuel; Giacobini, Paolo; Prevot, Vincent

    2016-06-01

    A sparse population of a few hundred primarily hypothalamic neurons forms the hub of a complex neuroglial network that controls reproduction in mammals by secreting the 'master molecule' gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH). Timely postnatal changes in GnRH expression are essential for puberty and adult fertility. Here we report that a multilayered microRNA-operated switch with built-in feedback governs increased GnRH expression during the infantile-to-juvenile transition and that impairing microRNA synthesis in GnRH neurons leads to hypogonadotropic hypogonadism and infertility in mice. Two essential components of this switch, miR-200 and miR-155, respectively regulate Zeb1, a repressor of Gnrh transcriptional activators and Gnrh itself, and Cebpb, a nitric oxide-mediated repressor of Gnrh that acts both directly and through Zeb1, in GnRH neurons. This alteration in the delicate balance between inductive and repressive signals induces the normal GnRH-fuelled run-up to correct puberty initiation, and interfering with this process disrupts the neuroendocrine control of reproduction. PMID:27135215

  3. Sustainable approaches for minimizing biosolids production and maximizing reuse options in sludge management: A review.

    PubMed

    Joo, Sung Hee; Dello Monaco, Francesca; Antmann, Eric; Chorath, Philip

    2015-08-01

    Sludge generation during wastewater treatment is inevitable even with proper management and treatment. Yet proper handling and disposal of sludge are still challenging in terms of treatment cost, presence of recalcitrant contaminants of concern, sanitary issues, and public acceptance. Conventional disposal methods (i.e. landfilling, incineration) have created concerns in terms of legislative restrictions and community perception, incentivizing consideration of substitute sludge management options. Furthermore, with proper treatment, biosolids from sludge, rich in organic materials and nutrients, could be utilizable as fertilizer. Despite the challenges of dealing with sludge, no review has dealt with integrated source reduction and reuse as the best sustainable management practices for sludge treatment. In this review, we present two main approaches as potentially sustainable controls: (i) pretreatment for minimizing extensive sludge treatment, and (ii) recycling and reuse of residual sludge. Drawing on these approaches, we also suggest strategies for efficient pretreatment mechanisms and residual reuse, presenting ideas for prospective future research. PMID:26001503

  4. Sustainable approaches for minimizing biosolids production and maximizing reuse options in sludge management: A review.

    PubMed

    Joo, Sung Hee; Dello Monaco, Francesca; Antmann, Eric; Chorath, Philip

    2015-08-01

    Sludge generation during wastewater treatment is inevitable even with proper management and treatment. Yet proper handling and disposal of sludge are still challenging in terms of treatment cost, presence of recalcitrant contaminants of concern, sanitary issues, and public acceptance. Conventional disposal methods (i.e. landfilling, incineration) have created concerns in terms of legislative restrictions and community perception, incentivizing consideration of substitute sludge management options. Furthermore, with proper treatment, biosolids from sludge, rich in organic materials and nutrients, could be utilizable as fertilizer. Despite the challenges of dealing with sludge, no review has dealt with integrated source reduction and reuse as the best sustainable management practices for sludge treatment. In this review, we present two main approaches as potentially sustainable controls: (i) pretreatment for minimizing extensive sludge treatment, and (ii) recycling and reuse of residual sludge. Drawing on these approaches, we also suggest strategies for efficient pretreatment mechanisms and residual reuse, presenting ideas for prospective future research.

  5. Sustainability of meat production beyond carbon footprint: a synthesis of case studies from grazing systems in Uruguay.

    PubMed

    Picasso, Valentín D; Modernel, Pablo D; Becoña, Gonzalo; Salvo, Lucía; Gutiérrez, Lucía; Astigarraga, Laura

    2014-11-01

    Livestock production has been challenged as a large contributor to climate change, and carbon footprint has become a widely used measure of cattle environmental impact. This analysis of fifteen beef grazing systems in Uruguay quantifies the range of variation of carbon footprint, and the trade-offs with other relevant environmental variables, using a partial life cycle assessment (LCA) methodology. Using carbon footprint as the primary environmental indicator has several limitations: different metrics (GWP vs. GTP) may lead to different conclusions, carbon sequestration from soils may drastically affect the results, and systems with lower carbon footprint may have higher energy use, soil erosion, nutrient imbalance, pesticide ecotoxicity, and impact on biodiversity. A multidimensional assessment of sustainability of meat production is therefore needed to inform decision makers. There is great potential to improve grazing livestock systems productivity while reducing carbon footprint and other environmental impacts, and conserving biodiversity.

  6. Sustainability of meat production beyond carbon footprint: a synthesis of case studies from grazing systems in Uruguay.

    PubMed

    Picasso, Valentín D; Modernel, Pablo D; Becoña, Gonzalo; Salvo, Lucía; Gutiérrez, Lucía; Astigarraga, Laura

    2014-11-01

    Livestock production has been challenged as a large contributor to climate change, and carbon footprint has become a widely used measure of cattle environmental impact. This analysis of fifteen beef grazing systems in Uruguay quantifies the range of variation of carbon footprint, and the trade-offs with other relevant environmental variables, using a partial life cycle assessment (LCA) methodology. Using carbon footprint as the primary environmental indicator has several limitations: different metrics (GWP vs. GTP) may lead to different conclusions, carbon sequestration from soils may drastically affect the results, and systems with lower carbon footprint may have higher energy use, soil erosion, nutrient imbalance, pesticide ecotoxicity, and impact on biodiversity. A multidimensional assessment of sustainability of meat production is therefore needed to inform decision makers. There is great potential to improve grazing livestock systems productivity while reducing carbon footprint and other environmental impacts, and conserving biodiversity. PMID:25048094

  7. A self-sustaining advanced lignocellulosic biofuel production by integration of anaerobic digestion and aerobic fungal fermentation.

    PubMed

    Zhong, Yuan; Ruan, Zhenhua; Zhong, Yingkui; Archer, Steven; Liu, Yan; Liao, Wei

    2015-03-01

    High energy demand hinders the development and application of aerobic microbial biofuel production from lignocellulosic materials. In order to address this issue, this study focused on developing an integrated system including anaerobic digestion and aerobic fungal fermentation to convert corn stover, animal manure and food wastes into microbial lipids for biodiesel production. Dairy manure and food waste were first anaerobically digested to produce energy and solid digestate (AD fiber). AD fiber and corn stover were then processed by a combined alkali and acid hydrolysis, followed by fungal lipid accumulation. The integrated process can generate 1L biodiesel and 1.9 kg methane from 12.8 kg dry dairy manure, 3.1 kg dry food wastes and 12.2 kg dry corn stover with a positive net energy of 57 MJ, which concludes a self-sustaining lignocellulosic biodiesel process and provides a new route to co-utilize corn stover and organic wastes for advanced biofuel production.

  8. MicroCameras and Photometers (MCP) instrument on board TARANIS satellite: scientific objectives, design, characterization results and products

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farges, T.; Hébert, P.; Le Mer-Dachard, F.; Cansot, E.; Offroy, M.; Ravel, K.; Gaillac, S.; Sato, M.; Blanc, E.

    2015-12-01

    TARANIS (Tool for the Analysis of Radiations from lightNings and Sprites) is a CNES micro satellite. Its main objective is to study impulsive transfers of energy between the Earth atmosphere and the space environment. It will be sun-synchronous at an altitude of 700 km. It will be launched from late 2017 for at least 2 years. Its payload is composed of several electromagnetic instruments in different wavelengths (from gamma-rays to radio waves including optical). TARANIS instruments are currently in calibration and qualification phase. The purpose of this poster is to present the MicroCameras and Photometers (MCP) scientific objectives and the sensor design, to show the performances of this instrument using the recent characterization, and at last to promote its products. The MicroCameras, developed by Sodern, are dedicated to the spatial description of TLEs and their parent lightning. They are able to differentiate sprite and lightning thanks to two narrow bands ([757-767 nm] and [772-782 nm]) that provide simultaneous pairs of images of an Event. The calibration results will be detailed. Simulation results of the differentiation method will be shown. Photometers, developed by Bertin Technologies, will provide temporal measurements and spectral characteristics of TLEs and lightning. It is a key instrument because of its on-board detection of the TLEs which can trigger the whole payload. Photometers use four spectral bands in the [170-260 nm], [332-342 nm], [757-767 nm] and [600-900 nm] and have the same field of view as cameras. The calibration results will also be detailed. The on-board TLE detection algorithm remote-controlled parameters will be tuned before launch using the electronic board and simulated or real events waveforms. Automatic classification tools are now tested to produce for the Scientific Mission Center some lists of elves, sprites or lightning without TLE following the recent work of Offroy et al. [2015] using ISUAL spectrophotometer data.

  9. Inside HOLMES experiment: 163Ho metallic target production for the micro-calorimeter absorber

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pizzigoni, G.; Alpert, B.; Balata, M.; Bennett, D.; Biasotti, M.; Boragno, C.; Brofferio, C.; De Gerone, M.; Dressler, R.; Faverazani, M.; Ferri, E.; Folwer, J.; Gatti, F.; Giachero, A.; Heinitz, S.; Hilton, G.; Köster, U.; Lusignoli, M.; Maino, M.; Mates, J.; Nisi, S.; Nizzolo, R.; Nucciotti, A.; Pessina, G.; Puiu, A.; Ragazzi, S.; Reintsema, C.; Ribeiro Gomes, M.; Shmidt, D.; Schumann, D.; Sisti, M.; Swetz, D.; Terranova, F.; Ullom, J.; Day, P. K.

    2016-07-01

    The main goal in the HOLMES experiment is the neutrino mass measurement using an array of 1000 micro-calorimeters with standard metallic absorber. A good isotope for such measurement is the 163Ho, those isotopes embedded in the metallic absorber will be 1011-1013. Since 163Ho is not available in nature, a dedicated process must be set up to produce the amount needed for this neutrino mass experiment. The process with the highest born-up cross-section is the neutron irradiation of Er2O3 enriched in 162Er: 162Er(n,γ)163Er →163Ho+νe, where the decay is an EC with half-life of about 75 min and the (n,γ) is about 20 barns for thermal neutron. After the neutron irradiation in the oxide powder there are several radioactive isotopes which are potentially disturbing because of the background that they cause below 5 keV. The chemical separation of holmium from the irradiation enriched Er2O3 powder is therefore mandatory and will be performed by means of ion exchange chromatography. On the end of those processes the oxide powder enriched in 162Er will have the 163Ho isotope number required. The holmium chemical state influences the end point of the EC spectrum, in order to avoid such effect it is necessary to embed in the absorber only the metallic isotope. Reduction and distillation technique allowed us to obtain a pure metallic holmium, starting from natural oxide holmium. This technique will be applied on the irradiated oxide powder to obtain the metallic 163Ho, ready to be embedded in the micro-calorimeter absorber.

  10. Biomass and water: a critical review of the water footprint concept as sustainability criterion for biomass production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zessner, M.; Thaler, S.; Bertrán de Lis, F.; Kaltenbrunner, W.; Kreuzinger, N.

    2012-04-01

    Agricultural production is the most water consuming economic sector worldwide. Together with fertile soil the availability of fresh water is the most restricting factor for biomass production in many areas around the globe. Additionally, agriculture significantly contributes to water pollution by nutrient losses and pesticide emissions. Therefore assessment of impacts on water is one of the essential aspects in the evaluation of the sustainability of concepts considering biomass as raw material. The water footprint concept combines all different types of water uses into one indicator. The total water footprint of biomass production consist of the green water footprint, which is the amount of rainwater evapotranspirated for growth, the blue water, which is the amount of ground and surface water used for irrigation, and the grey water, which quantifies the fresh water amount needed for assimilation of pollutions loads emitted into the water system from areas used for biomass production. The water footprint concept has significantly raised the public awareness of fresh water as resource with restricted availability. Water footprints for different products are commonly known and compared to each other. Despite the release of these general water footprint values a standardized method of water footprint accounting is still in work and differences in the basic assumptions for the calculation together with few methodological shortcomings may lead to significant differences in the results. Problems in this respect will be presented in this contribution and suggestions to improve standardization will be given. In contrast to the carbon footprint the water footprint has a strong regional component, because long distance water transport is far out of any economical possibility. That means even though the world's total biomass productivity is restricted by the joint availability of fertile soil and fresh water. There are tremendous regional differences to which extent water

  11. MicroRNA-124 negatively regulates LPS-induced TNF-α production in mouse macrophages by decreasing protein stability

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Yang; Qin, Zhen; Li, Qi; Wan, Jing-jing; Cheng, Ming-he; Wang, Peng-yuan; Su, Ding-feng; Yu, Jian-guang; Liu, Xia

    2016-01-01

    Aim: MicroRNAs play pivotal roles in regulation of both innate and adaptive immune responses. In the present study, we investigated the effects of microRNA-124 (miR-124) on production of the pro-inflammatory cytokine TNF-α in lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-treated mouse macrophages. Methods: Mouse macrophage cell line RAW264.7 was stimulated with LPS (100 ng/mL). The levels of miR-124 and TNF-α mRNA were evaluated using q-PCR. ELISA and Western blotting were used to detect TNF-α protein level in cell supernatants and cells, respectively. 3′-UTR luciferase reporter assays were used to analyze the targets of miR-124. For in vivo experiments, mice were injected with LPS (30 mg/kg, ip). Results: LPS stimulation significantly increased the mRNA level of miR-124 in RAW264.7 macrophages in vitro and mice in vivo. In RAW264.7 macrophages, knockdown of miR-124 with miR-124 inhibitor dose-dependently increased LPS-stimulated production of TNF-α protein and prolonged the half-life of TNF-α protein, but did not change TNF-α mRNA levels, whereas overexpression of miR-124 with miR-124 mimic produced the opposite effects. Furthermore, miR-124 was found to directly target two components of deubiquitinating enzymes: ubiquitin-specific proteases (USP) 2 and 14. Knockdown of USP2 or USP14 accelerated protein degradation of TNF-α, and abolished the effect of miR-124 on TNF-α protein stability. Conclusion: miR-124, targeting USP2 and USP14, negatively regulates LPS-induced TNF-α production in mouse macrophages, suggesting miR-124 as a new therapeutic target in inflammation-related diseases. PMID:27063215

  12. In vitro conservation and sustained production of breadfruit (Artocarpus altilis, Moraceae): modern technologies for a traditional tropical crop.

    PubMed

    Murch, Susan J; Ragone, Diane; Shi, Wendy Lei; Alan, Ali R; Saxena, Praveen K

    2008-02-01

    Breadfruit (Artocarpus altilis, Moraceae) is a traditionally cultivated, high-energy, high-yield crop, but widespread use of the plant for food is limited by poor quality and poor storage properties of the fruit. A unique field genebank of breadfruit species and cultivars exists at the National Tropical Botanical Garden in the Hawaiian Islands and is an important global resource for conservation and sustainable use of breadfruit. However, this plant collection could be damaged by a random natural disaster such as a hurricane. We have developed a highly efficient in vitro plant propagation system to maintain, conserve, mass propagate, and distribute elite varieties of this important tree species. Mature axillary shoot buds were collected from three different cultivars of breadfruit and proliferated using a cytokinin-supplemented medium. The multiple shoots were maintained as stock cultures and repeatedly used to develop whole plants after root differentiation on a basal or an auxin-containing medium. The plantlets were successfully grown under greenhouse conditions and were reused to initiate additional shoot cultures for sustained production of plants. Flow cytometry was used to determine the nuclear deoxyribonucleic acid content and the ploidy status of the in vitro grown population. The efficacy of the micropropagation protocols developed in this study represents a significant advancement in the conservation and sustained mass propagation of breadfruit germplasm in a controlled environment free from contamination.

  13. In vitro conservation and sustained production of breadfruit ( Artocarpus altilis, Moraceae): modern technologies for a traditional tropical crop

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murch, Susan J.; Ragone, Diane; Shi, Wendy Lei; Alan, Ali R.; Saxena, Praveen K.

    2008-02-01

    Breadfruit ( Artocarpus altilis, Moraceae) is a traditionally cultivated, high-energy, high-yield crop, but widespread use of the plant for food is limited by poor quality and poor storage properties of the fruit. A unique field genebank of breadfruit species and cultivars exists at the National Tropical Botanical Garden in the Hawaiian Islands and is an important global resource for conservation and sustainable use of breadfruit. However, this plant collection could be damaged by a random natural disaster such as a hurricane. We have developed a highly efficient in vitro plant propagation system to maintain, conserve, mass propagate, and distribute elite varieties of this important tree species. Mature axillary shoot buds were collected from three different cultivars of breadfruit and proliferated using a cytokinin-supplemented medium. The multiple shoots were maintained as stock cultures and repeatedly used to develop whole plants after root differentiation on a basal or an auxin-containing medium. The plantlets were successfully grown under greenhouse conditions and were reused to initiate additional shoot cultures for sustained production of plants. Flow cytometry was used to determine the nuclear deoxyribonucleic acid content and the ploidy status of the in vitro grown population. The efficacy of the micropropagation protocols developed in this study represents a significant advancement in the conservation and sustained mass propagation of breadfruit germplasm in a controlled environment free from contamination.

  14. Cow-calf reproductive, genetic, and nutritional management to improve the sustainability of whole beef production systems.

    PubMed

    White, R R; Brady, M; Capper, J L; McNamara, J P; Johnson, K A

    2015-06-01

    Optimizing efficiency in the cow-calf sector is an important step toward improving beef sustainability. The objective of the study was to use a model to identify the relative roles of reproductive, genetic, and nutritional management in minimizing beef production systems' environmental impact in an economically viable, socially acceptable manner. An economic and environmental diet optimizer was used to identify ideal nutritional management of beef production systems varying in genetic and reproductive technology use. Eight management scenarios were compared to a least cost baseline: average U.S. production practices (CON), CON with variable nutritional management (NUT), twinning cattle (TWN), early weaning (EW), sire selection by EPD using either on-farm bulls (EPD-B) or AI (EPD-AI), decreasing the calving window (CW), or selecting bulls by EPD and reducing the calving window (EPD-CW). Diets to minimize land use, water use, and/or greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions were optimized under each scenario. Increases in diet cost attributable to reducing environmental impact were constrained to less than stakeholder willingness to pay for improved efficiency and reduced environmental impact. Baseline land use, water use, and GHG emissions were 188 m, 712 L, and 21.9 kg/kg HCW beef. The NUT scenario, which assessed opportunities to improve sustainability by altering nutritional management alone, resulted in a simultaneous 1.5% reduction in land use, water use, and GHG emissions. The CW scenario improved calf uniformity and simultaneously decreased land use, water use, and GHG emissions by 3.2%. Twinning resulted in a 9.2% reduction in the 3 environmental impact metrics. The EW scenario allowed for an 8.5% reduction in the 3 metrics. The EPD-AI scenario resulted in an 11.1% reduction, which was comparable to the 11.3% reduction achieved by EPD-B in the 3 metrics. Improving genetic selection by using AI or by purchasing on-farm bulls based on their superior EPD demonstrated

  15. Production of hydrogen, ethanol and volatile fatty acids through co-fermentation of macro- and micro-algae.

    PubMed

    Xia, Ao; Jacob, Amita; Tabassum, Muhammad Rizwan; Herrmann, Christiane; Murphy, Jerry D

    2016-04-01

    Algae may be fermented to produce hydrogen. However micro-algae (such as Arthrospira platensis) are rich in proteins and have a low carbon/nitrogen (C/N) ratio, which is not ideal for hydrogen fermentation. Co-fermentation with macro-algae (such as Laminaria digitata), which are rich in carbohydrates with a high (C/N) ratio, improves the performance of hydrogen production. Algal biomass, pre-treated with 2.5% dilute H2SO4 at 135°C for 15min, effected a total yield of carbohydrate monomers (CMs) of 0.268g/g volatile solids (VS). The CMs were dominating by glucose and mannitol and most (ca. 95%) were consumed by anaerobic fermentative micro-organisms during subsequent fermentation. An optimal specific hydrogen yield (SHY) of 85.0mL/g VS was obtained at an algal C/N ratio of 26.2 and an algal concentration of 20g VS/L. The overall energy conversion efficiency increased from 31.3% to 54.5% with decreasing algal concentration from 40 to 5 VS g/L.

  16. Production of hydrogen, ethanol and volatile fatty acids through co-fermentation of macro- and micro-algae.

    PubMed

    Xia, Ao; Jacob, Amita; Tabassum, Muhammad Rizwan; Herrmann, Christiane; Murphy, Jerry D

    2016-04-01

    Algae may be fermented to produce hydrogen. However micro-algae (such as Arthrospira platensis) are rich in proteins and have a low carbon/nitrogen (C/N) ratio, which is not ideal for hydrogen fermentation. Co-fermentation with macro-algae (such as Laminaria digitata), which are rich in carbohydrates with a high (C/N) ratio, improves the performance of hydrogen production. Algal biomass, pre-treated with 2.5% dilute H2SO4 at 135°C for 15min, effected a total yield of carbohydrate monomers (CMs) of 0.268g/g volatile solids (VS). The CMs were dominating by glucose and mannitol and most (ca. 95%) were consumed by anaerobic fermentative micro-organisms during subsequent fermentation. An optimal specific hydrogen yield (SHY) of 85.0mL/g VS was obtained at an algal C/N ratio of 26.2 and an algal concentration of 20g VS/L. The overall energy conversion efficiency increased from 31.3% to 54.5% with decreasing algal concentration from 40 to 5 VS g/L. PMID:26820925

  17. Recent progress in alkaline direct ethylene glycol fuel cells for sustainable energy production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    An, L.; Chen, R.

    2016-10-01

    Alkaline direct ethylene glycol fuel cells are one of the most promising power sources for portable, mobile and stationary power applications, primarily because this type of fuel cell runs on a sustainable fuel and the key materials that constitute the fuel cell are relatively inexpensive. This review article summarizes and discusses the past investigations on the development of alkaline direct ethylene glycol fuel cells, including the physical and chemical processes through the fuel cell structure, the electrocatalytic oxidation and electrocatalysts of ethylene glycol, the singe-cell performance, and innovative system designs.

  18. Recent strategies for efficient production of polyhydroxyalkanoates by micro-organisms.

    PubMed

    Liu, C-C; Zhang, L-L; An, J; Chen, B; Yang, H

    2016-01-01

    Polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs) are polyesters accumulated by many bacteria under unbalanced growth conditions, and have been used to meet the various demands in areas of agriculture, medicine, and materials especially belong to a rapidly expanding area of biomedical research. Unfortunately, the high production cost than the traditional synthetic materials has greatly limited the wide application of PHA. Here, we systematically summarized recent progress in production of PHAs and a series of optimization strategies such as supplying renewable carbon substrates, developing better bacterial strains, optimization of fermentation processes, engineering new pathways and etc., were applied to reduce production cost, therefore providing many new ideas and methods for the production of PHAs in economically viable processes. This is believed to be a comprehensive report to show different strategies and methods for low-cost production of PHAs. Further studies are still needed to make PHAs more and more economically viable to meet a wide range of applicability. PMID:26482840

  19. Generation of Triple-Transgenic Forsythia Cell Cultures as a Platform for the Efficient, Stable, and Sustainable Production of Lignans

    PubMed Central

    Murata, Jun; Matsumoto, Erika; Morimoto, Kinuyo; Koyama, Tomotsugu; Satake, Honoo

    2015-01-01

    Sesamin is a furofuran lignan biosynthesized from the precursor lignan pinoresinol specifically in sesame seeds. This lignan is shown to exhibit anti-hypertensive activity, protect the liver from damages by ethanol and lipid oxidation, and reduce lung tumor growth. Despite rapidly elevating demand, plant sources of lignans are frequently limited because of the high cost of locating and collecting plants. Indeed, the acquisition of sesamin exclusively depends on the conventional extraction of particular Sesamum seeds. In this study, we have created the efficient, stable and sustainable sesamin production system using triple-transgenic Forsythia koreana cell suspension cultures, U18i-CPi-Fk. These transgenic cell cultures were generated by stably introducing an RNAi sequence against the pinoresinol-glucosylating enzyme, UGT71A18, into existing CPi-Fk cells, which had been created by introducing Sesamum indicum sesamin synthase (CYP81Q1) and an RNA interference (RNAi) sequence against pinoresinol/lariciresinol reductase (PLR) into F. koreanna cells. Compared to its transgenic prototype, U18i-CPi-Fk displayed 5-fold higher production of pinoresinol aglycone and 1.4-fold higher production of sesamin, respectively, while the wildtype cannot produce sesamin due to a lack of any intrinsic sesamin synthase. Moreover, red LED irradiation of U18i-CPi-Fk specifically resulted in 3.0-fold greater production in both pinoresinol aglycone and sesamin than production of these lignans under the dark condition, whereas pinoresinol production was decreased in the wildtype under red LED. Moreover, we developed a procedure for sodium alginate-based long-term storage of U18i-CPi-Fk in liquid nitrogen. Production of sesamin in U18i-CPi-Fk re-thawed after six-month cryopreservation was equivalent to that of non-cryopreserved U18i-CPi-Fk. These data warrant on-demand production of sesamin anytime and anywhere. Collectively, the present study provides evidence that U18i-CP-Fk is an

  20. Generation of Triple-Transgenic Forsythia Cell Cultures as a Platform for the Efficient, Stable, and Sustainable Production of Lignans.

    PubMed

    Murata, Jun; Matsumoto, Erika; Morimoto, Kinuyo; Koyama, Tomotsugu; Satake, Honoo

    2015-01-01

    Sesamin is a furofuran lignan biosynthesized from the precursor lignan pinoresinol specifically in sesame seeds. This lignan is shown to exhibit anti-hypertensive activity, protect the liver from damages by ethanol and lipid oxidation, and reduce lung tumor growth. Despite rapidly elevating demand, plant sources of lignans are frequently limited because of the high cost of locating and collecting plants. Indeed, the acquisition of sesamin exclusively depends on the conventional extraction of particular Sesamum seeds. In this study, we have created the efficient, stable and sustainable sesamin production system using triple-transgenic Forsythia koreana cell suspension cultures, U18i-CPi-Fk. These transgenic cell cultures were generated by stably introducing an RNAi sequence against the pinoresinol-glucosylating enzyme, UGT71A18, into existing CPi-Fk cells, which had been created by introducing Sesamum indicum sesamin synthase (CYP81Q1) and an RNA interference (RNAi) sequence against pinoresinol/lariciresinol reductase (PLR) into F. koreanna cells. Compared to its transgenic prototype, U18i-CPi-Fk displayed 5-fold higher production of pinoresinol aglycone and 1.4-fold higher production of sesamin, respectively, while the wildtype cannot produce sesamin due to a lack of any intrinsic sesamin synthase. Moreover, red LED irradiation of U18i-CPi-Fk specifically resulted in 3.0-fold greater production in both pinoresinol aglycone and sesamin than production of these lignans under the dark condition, whereas pinoresinol production was decreased in the wildtype under red LED. Moreover, we developed a procedure for sodium alginate-based long-term storage of U18i-CPi-Fk in liquid nitrogen. Production of sesamin in U18i-CPi-Fk re-thawed after six-month cryopreservation was equivalent to that of non-cryopreserved U18i-CPi-Fk. These data warrant on-demand production of sesamin anytime and anywhere. Collectively, the present study provides evidence that U18i-CP-Fk is an

  1. Generation of Triple-Transgenic Forsythia Cell Cultures as a Platform for the Efficient, Stable, and Sustainable Production of Lignans.

    PubMed

    Murata, Jun; Matsumoto, Erika; Morimoto, Kinuyo; Koyama, Tomotsugu; Satake, Honoo

    2015-01-01

    Sesamin is a furofuran lignan biosynthesized from the precursor lignan pinoresinol specifically in sesame seeds. This lignan is shown to exhibit anti-hypertensive activity, protect the liver from damages by ethanol and lipid oxidation, and reduce lung tumor growth. Despite rapidly elevating demand, plant sources of lignans are frequently limited because of the high cost of locating and collecting plants. Indeed, the acquisition of sesamin exclusively depends on the conventional extraction of particular Sesamum seeds. In this study, we have created the efficient, stable and sustainable sesamin production system using triple-transgenic Forsythia koreana cell suspension cultures, U18i-CPi-Fk. These transgenic cell cultures were generated by stably introducing an RNAi sequence against the pinoresinol-glucosylating enzyme, UGT71A18, into existing CPi-Fk cells, which had been created by introducing Sesamum indicum sesamin synthase (CYP81Q1) and an RNA interference (RNAi) sequence against pinoresinol/lariciresinol reductase (PLR) into F. koreanna cells. Compared to its transgenic prototype, U18i-CPi-Fk displayed 5-fold higher production of pinoresinol aglycone and 1.4-fold higher production of sesamin, respectively, while the wildtype cannot produce sesamin due to a lack of any intrinsic sesamin synthase. Moreover, red LED irradiation of U18i-CPi-Fk specifically resulted in 3.0-fold greater production in both pinoresinol aglycone and sesamin than production of these lignans under the dark condition, whereas pinoresinol production was decreased in the wildtype under red LED. Moreover, we developed a procedure for sodium alginate-based long-term storage of U18i-CPi-Fk in liquid nitrogen. Production of sesamin in U18i-CPi-Fk re-thawed after six-month cryopreservation was equivalent to that of non-cryopreserved U18i-CPi-Fk. These data warrant on-demand production of sesamin anytime and anywhere. Collectively, the present study provides evidence that U18i-CP-Fk is an

  2. Biofertilizers function as key player in sustainable agriculture by improving soil fertility, plant tolerance and crop productivity

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Current soil management strategies are mainly dependent on inorganic chemical-based fertilizers, which caused a serious threat to human health and environment. The exploitation of beneficial microbes as a biofertilizer has become paramount importance in agriculture sector for their potential role in food safety and sustainable crop production. The eco-friendly approaches inspire a wide range of application of plant growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPRs), endo- and ectomycorrhizal fungi, cyanobacteria and many other useful microscopic organisms led to improved nutrient uptake, plant growth and plant tolerance to abiotic and biotic stress. The present review highlighted biofertilizers mediated crops functional traits such as plant growth and productivity, nutrient profile, plant defense and protection with special emphasis to its function to trigger various growth- and defense-related genes in signaling network of cellular pathways to cause cellular response and thereby crop improvement. The knowledge gained from the literature appraised herein will help us to understand the physiological bases of biofertlizers towards sustainable agriculture in reducing problems associated with the use of chemicals fertilizers. PMID:24885352

  3. Biofertilizers function as key player in sustainable agriculture by improving soil fertility, plant tolerance and crop productivity.

    PubMed

    Bhardwaj, Deepak; Ansari, Mohammad Wahid; Sahoo, Ranjan Kumar; Tuteja, Narendra

    2014-05-08

    Current soil management strategies are mainly dependent on inorganic chemical-based fertilizers, which caused a serious threat to human health and environment. The exploitation of beneficial microbes as a biofertilizer has become paramount importance in agriculture sector for their potential role in food safety and sustainable crop production. The eco-friendly approaches inspire a wide range of application of plant growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPRs), endo- and ectomycorrhizal fungi, cyanobacteria and many other useful microscopic organisms led to improved nutrient uptake, plant growth and plant tolerance to abiotic and biotic stress. The present review highlighted biofertilizers mediated crops functional traits such as plant growth and productivity, nutrient profile, plant defense and protection with special emphasis to its function to trigger various growth- and defense-related genes in signaling network of cellular pathways to cause cellular response and thereby crop improvement. The knowledge gained from the literature appraised herein will help us to understand the physiological bases of biofertlizers towards sustainable agriculture in reducing problems associated with the use of chemicals fertilizers.

  4. Micro-Machining In High Volume Production Example: Ball Pen Writing Points

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schaechter, Friedrich

    1987-01-01

    The writing performance of ball pens can be further improved. New or refined testing and measuring techniques have clearly shown that substantial benefits can be derived from mechanical perfection. This involves developing single-purpose machines for ultraprecision forming of cutting tools, for high speed production machinery capable of producing ball pen writing points with a minimum of uncertainties. It also involves testing equipment for the materials. However, the aim is to reduce manufacturing costs and simplify production.

  5. Mediating effect of sustainable product development on relationship between quality management practices and organizational performance: Empirical study of Malaysian automotive industry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahmad, Mohd Akhir; Asaad, Mohd Norhasni; Saad, Rohaizah; Iteng, Rosman; Rahim, Mohd Kamarul Irwan Abdul

    2016-08-01

    Global competition in the automotive industry has encouraged companies to implement quality management practices in all managerial aspects to ensure customer satisfaction in products and reduce costs. Therefore, guaranteeing only product quality is insufficient without considering product sustainability, which involves economic, environment, and social elements. Companies that meet both objectives gain advantages in the modern business environment. This study addresses the issues regarding product quality and sustainability in small and medium-sized enterprises in the Malaysian automotive industry. A research was carried out in 91 SMEs automotive suppliers in throughout Malaysia. The analyzed using SPSS ver.23 has been proposed in correlation study. Specifically, this study investigates the relationship between quality management practices and organizational performance as well as the mediating effect of sustainable product development on this relationship.

  6. New advances in the integrated management of food processing by-products in Europe: sustainable exploitation of fruit and cereal processing by-products with the production of new food products (NAMASTE EU).

    PubMed

    Fava, Fabio; Zanaroli, Giulio; Vannini, Lucia; Guerzoni, Elisabetta; Bordoni, Alessandra; Viaggi, Davide; Robertson, Jim; Waldron, Keith; Bald, Carlos; Esturo, Aintzane; Talens, Clara; Tueros, Itziar; Cebrián, Marta; Sebők, András; Kuti, Tunde; Broeze, Jan; Macias, Marta; Brendle, Hans-Georg

    2013-09-25

    By-products generated every year by the European fruit and cereal processing industry currently exceed several million tons. They are disposed of mainly through landfills and thus are largely unexploited sources of several valuable biobased compounds potentially profitable in the formulation of novel food products. The opportunity to design novel strategies to turn them into added value products and food ingredients via novel and sustainable processes is the main target of recently EC-funded FP7 project NAMASTE-EU. NAMASTE-EU aims at developing new laboratory-scale protocols and processes for the exploitation of citrus processing by-products and wheat bran surpluses via the production of ingredients useful for the formulation of new beverage and food products. Among the main results achieved in the first two years of the project, there are the development and assessment of procedures for the selection, stabilization and the physical/biological treatment of citrus and wheat processing by-products, the obtainment and recovery of some bioactive molecules and ingredients and the development of procedures for assessing the quality of the obtained ingredients and for their exploitation in the preparation of new food products. PMID:23689042

  7. New advances in the integrated management of food processing by-products in Europe: sustainable exploitation of fruit and cereal processing by-products with the production of new food products (NAMASTE EU).

    PubMed

    Fava, Fabio; Zanaroli, Giulio; Vannini, Lucia; Guerzoni, Elisabetta; Bordoni, Alessandra; Viaggi, Davide; Robertson, Jim; Waldron, Keith; Bald, Carlos; Esturo, Aintzane; Talens, Clara; Tueros, Itziar; Cebrián, Marta; Sebők, András; Kuti, Tunde; Broeze, Jan; Macias, Marta; Brendle, Hans-Georg

    2013-09-25

    By-products generated every year by the European fruit and cereal processing industry currently exceed several million tons. They are disposed of mainly through landfills and thus are largely unexploited sources of several valuable biobased compounds potentially profitable in the formulation of novel food products. The opportunity to design novel strategies to turn them into added value products and food ingredients via novel and sustainable processes is the main target of recently EC-funded FP7 project NAMASTE-EU. NAMASTE-EU aims at developing new laboratory-scale protocols and processes for the exploitation of citrus processing by-products and wheat bran surpluses via the production of ingredients useful for the formulation of new beverage and food products. Among the main results achieved in the first two years of the project, there are the development and assessment of procedures for the selection, stabilization and the physical/biological treatment of citrus and wheat processing by-products, the obtainment and recovery of some bioactive molecules and ingredients and the development of procedures for assessing the quality of the obtained ingredients and for their exploitation in the preparation of new food products.

  8. Forest products industry of the future: Building a sustainable technology advantage for America`s forest products industry

    SciTech Connect

    1999-02-01

    The US forest, wood, and paper industry ranks as one of the most competitive forest products industries in the world. With annual shipments valued at nearly $267 billion, it employs over 1.3 million people and is currently among the top 10 manufacturing employers in 46 out of 50 states. Retaining this leadership position will depend largely on the industry`s success in developing and using advanced technologies. These technologies will enable manufacturing plants and forestry enterprises to maximize energy and materials efficiency and reduce waste and emissions, while producing high-quality, competitively priced wood and paper products. In a unique partnership, leaders in the forest products industry have teamed with the US Department of Energy`s Office of Industrial Technologies (OIT) to encourage cooperative research efforts that will help position the US forest products industry for continuing prosperity while advancing national energy efficiency and environmental goals.

  9. DO BIO-BASED PRODUCTS MOVE US TOWARD SUSTAINABILITY? A LOOK AT THREE CASE STUDIES

    EPA Science Inventory

    The movement to buy "environmentally-friendly" products was recently reinvigorated by the signing of the 2002 Farm Act that requires all federal agencies to give preference to products that are made (in whole or significant part) from bio-based material. This paper add...

  10. Sustainable multipurpose biorefineries for third-generation biofuels and value-added co-products

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Modern biorefinery facilities conduct many types of processes, including those producing advanced biofuels, commodity chemicals, biodiesel, and value-added co-products such as sweeteners and bioinsecticides, with many more co-products, chemicals and biofuels on the horizon. Most of these processes ...

  11. Evaluation of sweet sorghum as a feedstock by multiple harvests for sustainable bioenergy production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Sweet sorghum has become an important feedstock for bioethanol production. Total sugar yield and multiple harvests can directly affect ethanol production cost. Little is known about stem traits and multiple harvests that contribute to sugar yield in sweet sorghum. Stem traits were evaluated from 25 ...

  12. Sustainability: The capacity of smokeless biomass pyrolysis for energy production, global carbon capture and sequestration

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Application of modern smokeless biomass pyrolysis for biochar and biofuel production is potentially a revolutionary approach for global carbon capture and sequestration at gigatons of carbon (GtC) scales. A conversion of about 7% of the annual terrestrial gross photosynthetic product (120 GtC y-1) i...

  13. A ROADMAP FOR SUSTAINABLE ADVANCED BIOFUEL FEEDSTOCK PRODUCTION IN THE MID-SOUTH

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Although various studies exist that deal with the production of bioenergy crops, a number of aspects of bioenergy feedstock production (feedstock choice, natural resource availability, available infrastructure, etc.) are strongly influenced by the region in which the feedstock is produced and proces...

  14. The National Biofuels Strategy - Importance of sustainable feedstock production systems in regional-based supply chains

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Region-based production systems are needed to produce the feedstocks that will be turned into the biofuels required to meet Federal mandated targets. Executive and Legislative actions have put into motion significant government responses designed to advance the development and production of domestic...

  15. Mission-Focused, Productivity-Based Model for Sustainable Support of Academic Hematology/Oncology Faculty and Divisions

    PubMed Central

    Holcombe, Randall F.; Hollinger, Krista J.

    2010-01-01

    Purpose: Adoption of a mission-focused, productivity-based funds-flow model recognizes faculty activities regardless of their primary mission and incentivizes and financially rewards both academic and clinical productivity. We describe here how such a model could be utilized for an academic division of hematology and medical oncology. Methods: On the basis of our own experience in managing the Division of Hematology/Oncology at the University of California at Irvine, and results of a survey of hematology/oncology division chiefs, a new model was developed with clear definitions of missions (ascertaining faculty effort toward each mission and definition of productivity benchmarks for each), careful identification of revenue streams, and establishment of base and incentive salary support that rewards productivity. Ongoing performance improvement and monitoring was incorporated into the model. Results: A model for sustainable support of hematology/oncology faculty and divisions was developed that was transparent, flexible, and had buy-in from both the faculty and departmental/school administration. Development of the model was supported by a survey of hematology/oncology division chiefs. Conclusion: It is possible to reorganize a faculty practice and salary structure to achieve a mission-focused, productivity-based paradigm. Although the model described is specifically targeted at academic hematology and medical oncology divisions, with modification, it could serve as a framework for other departments or throughout schools of medicine. PMID:20592779

  16. Sustaining the Productivity and Function of Intensively Managed Forests - Final Report

    SciTech Connect

    Burger, James A.; Xu, Yi-Jun

    2001-03-23

    The main goal of this study is to ensure sustainable management of wetland forests in the southeastern United States. The study is projected to measure soil, hydrology, and forest responses to several management scenarios across a complete forest cycle. From August 1997 to August 2000 the study has received funding as one of the Agenda 2020 projects, from the U.S. Department of Energy (Cooperative Agreement Number DE-FC07-97ID13551), the National Council of the Paper Industry for Air and Stream Improvement, and Westvac Corporation. Quarterly progress reports were submitted regularly to the Department and all project participants. This final report summarizes the project results and progress achieved during this 3-year period. Over the past three years all research objectives planned for this project were completed.

  17. Soil memory as a potential mechanism for encouraging sustainable plant health and productivity.

    PubMed

    Lapsansky, Erin R; Milroy, Arwen M; Andales, Marie J; Vivanco, Jorge M

    2016-04-01

    The unspecified components of plant-microbe and plant-microbiome associations in the rhizosphere are complex, but recent research is simplifying our understanding of these relationships. We propose that the strong association between hosts, symbionts, and pathogens could be simplified by the concept of soil memory, which explains how a plant could promote their fecundity and protect their offspring through tightly associated relationships with the soil. Although there are many questions surrounding the mechanisms of this phenomenon, recent research has exposed evidence of its existence. Along with evidence from observations and mechanisms related to soil memory, we report means to utilize our understanding as sustainable protection for agricultural crops and propose future research questions.

  18. Comparing Kaolin and Pinolene to Improve Sustainable Grapevine Production during Drought

    PubMed Central

    Belfiore, Nicola; Gaiotti, Federica; Lovat, Lorenzo; Sansone, Luigi; Poni, Stefano; Tomasi, Diego

    2016-01-01

    Viticulture is widely practiced in dry regions, where the grapevine is greatly exposed to water stress. Optimizing plant water use efficiency (WUE) without affecting crop yield, grape and wine quality is crucial to limiting use of water for irrigation and to significantly improving viticulture sustainability. This study examines the use in vineyards of particle film technology (engineered kaolin) and compares it to a film-forming antitranspirant (pinolene), traditionally used to limit leaf water loss, and to an untreated control. The trial was carried out under field conditions over three growing seasons, during which moderate to very severe plant water stress (down to -1.9 MPa) was measured through stem water potential. Leaf stomatal conductance (gs) and photosynthesis rate (An) were measured during the seasons and used to compute intrinsic WUE (WUEi, defined as An/gs ratio). Leaf temperature was also recorded and compared between treatments. Bunch quantity, bunch and berry weight, sugar accumulation, anthocyanin and flavonoid contents were measured. Finally, microvinifications were performed and resultant wines subjected to sensory evaluation.Results showed that the use of kaolin increased grapevine intrinsic WUE (+18% on average as compared to unsprayed vines) without affecting berry and bunch weight and quantity, or sugar level. Anthocyanin content increased (+35%) in kaolin treatment, and the wine was judged more attractive (p-value <0.05) and slightly more appreciated (p-value < 0.1) than control. Pinolene did not increase WUEi, limiting An more than gs; grapes with this treatment contained lower sugar and anthocyanin content than control, and the obtained wine was the least appreciated. This study demonstrates that particle film technology can improve vine WUEi and wine quality at the same time, while traditional antitranspirants were not as effective for these purposes. This positive effect can be used in interaction with other already-demonstrated uses of

  19. Comparing Kaolin and Pinolene to Improve Sustainable Grapevine Production during Drought.

    PubMed

    Brillante, Luca; Belfiore, Nicola; Gaiotti, Federica; Lovat, Lorenzo; Sansone, Luigi; Poni, Stefano; Tomasi, Diego

    2016-01-01

    Viticulture is widely practiced in dry regions, where the grapevine is greatly exposed to water stress. Optimizing plant water use efficiency (WUE) without affecting crop yield, grape and wine quality is crucial to limiting use of water for irrigation and to significantly improving viticulture sustainability. This study examines the use in vineyards of particle film technology (engineered kaolin) and compares it to a film-forming antitranspirant (pinolene), traditionally used to limit leaf water loss, and to an untreated control. The trial was carried out under field conditions over three growing seasons, during which moderate to very severe plant water stress (down to -1.9 MPa) was measured through stem water potential. Leaf stomatal conductance (gs) and photosynthesis rate (An) were measured during the seasons and used to compute intrinsic WUE (WUEi, defined as An/gs ratio). Leaf temperature was also recorded and compared between treatments. Bunch quantity, bunch and berry weight, sugar accumulation, anthocyanin and flavonoid contents were measured. Finally, microvinifications were performed and resultant wines subjected to sensory evaluation.Results showed that the use of kaolin increased grapevine intrinsic WUE (+18% on average as compared to unsprayed vines) without affecting berry and bunch weight and quantity, or sugar level. Anthocyanin content increased (+35%) in kaolin treatment, and the wine was judged more attractive (p-value <0.05) and slightly more appreciated (p-value < 0.1) than control. Pinolene did not increase WUEi, limiting An more than gs; grapes with this treatment contained lower sugar and anthocyanin content than control, and the obtained wine was the least appreciated. This study demonstrates that particle film technology can improve vine WUEi and wine quality at the same time, while traditional antitranspirants were not as effective for these purposes. This positive effect can be used in interaction with other already-demonstrated uses of

  20. Effects of Mountain Ultra-Marathon Running on ROS Production and Oxidative Damage by Micro-Invasive Analytic Techniques

    PubMed Central

    Mrakic-Sposta, Simona; Gussoni, Maristella; Moretti, Sarah; Pratali, Lorenza; Giardini, Guido; Tacchini, Philippe; Dellanoce, Cinzia; Tonacci, Alessandro; Mastorci, Francesca; Borghini, Andrea; Montorsi, Michela; Vezzoli, Alessandra

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Aiming to gain a detailed insight into the physiological mechanisms involved under extreme conditions, a group of experienced ultra-marathon runners, performing the mountain Tor des Géants® ultra-marathon: 330 km trail-run in Valle d’Aosta, 24000 m of positive and negative elevation changes, was monitored. ROS production rate, antioxidant capacity, oxidative damage and inflammation markers were assessed, adopting micro-invasive analytic techniques. Methods Forty-six male athletes (45.04±8.75 yr, 72.6±8.4 kg, 1.76±0.05 m) were tested. Capillary blood and urine were collected before (Pre-), in the middle (Middle-) and immediately after (Post-) Race. Samples were analyzed for: Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) production by Electron Paramagnetic Resonance; Antioxidant Capacity by Electrochemistry; oxidative damage (8-hydroxy-2-deoxy Guanosine: 8-OH-dG; 8-isoprostane: 8-isoPGF2α) and nitric oxide metabolites by enzymatic assays; inflammatory biomarkers (plasma and urine interleukin-6: IL-6-P and IL-6-U) by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISA); Creatinine and Neopterin by HPLC, hematologic (lactate, glucose and hematocrit) and urine parameters by standard analyses. Results Twenty-five athletes finished the race, while twenty-one dropped out of it. A significant increase (Post-Race vs Pre) of the ROS production rate (2.20±0.27 vs 1.65±0.22 μmol.min-1), oxidative damage biomarkers (8-OH-dG: 6.32±2.38 vs 4.16±1.25 ng.mg-1 Creatinine and 8-isoPGF2α: 1404.0±518.30 vs 822.51±448.91 pg.mg-1Creatinine), inflammatory state (IL-6-P: 66.42±36.92 vs 1.29±0.54 pg.mL-1 and IL-6-U: 1.33±0.56 vs 0.71±0.17 pg.mL1) and lactate production (+190%), associated with a decrease of both antioxidant capacity (-7%) and renal function (i.e. Creatinine level +76%) was found. Conclusions The used micro-invasive analytic methods allowed us to perform most of them before, during and immediately after the race directly in the field, by passing the need of storing and

  1. Is Sustainability Sustainable?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bonevac, Daniel

    2010-01-01

    The most important concept in current environmental thinking is "sustainability". Environmental policies, economic policies, development, resource use--all of these things, according to the consensus, ought to be sustainable. But what is sustainability? What is its ethical foundation? There is little consensus about how these questions ought to be…

  2. Differentiated Products Demand Systems from a Combination of Micro and Macro Data: The New Car Market

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Berry, Steven; Levinsohn, James; Pakes, Ariel

    2004-01-01

    In this paper, we consider how rich sources of information on consumer choice can help to identify demand parameters in a widely used class of differentiated products demand models. Most important, we show how to use "second-choice" data on automotive purchases to obtain good estimates of substitution patterns in the automobile industry. We use…

  3. Software for Teaching about AIDS & Sex: A Critical Review of Products. A MicroSIFT Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Weaver, Dave

    This document contains critical reviews of 10 microcomputer software packages and two interactive videodisc products designed for use in teaching about Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) and sex at the secondary school level and above. Each package was reviewed by one or two secondary school health teachers and by a staff member from the…

  4. Product Descriptions: Function Plotters for Secondary Math Teachers. A MicroSIFT Quarterly Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Weaver, Dave; And Others

    Specific programs and software resources are described in this report on function plotters to be used in secondary mathematics instruction. Products are entered in alphabetical order and the following information is provided for each package included: (1) producer; (2) hardware needed; (3) required peripherals; (4) grade level; (5) price; (6)…

  5. Sustainable biomass energy production and rural economic development using alfalfa as feedstock

    SciTech Connect

    DeLong, M.M.; Swanberg, D.R.; Oelke, E.A.

    1995-11-01

    Alfalfa is a well-known and widely-planted crop that offers environmental and soil conservation advantages when grown as a 4-year segment in a 7-year rotation with corn and soybeans. Alfalfa fixes nitrogen from the air, thereby enhancing soil nitrogen and decreasing the need for manufactured nitrogen fertilizer. With alfalfa yields of 4 dry tons per acre per year and with separate alfalfa leaves being sold as a high-value animal feed, separated alfalfa stems can be economically viable fuel feedstock for a gasifier combined cycle power plant. This paper reports on a feasibility study for an integrated biomass power system, where an energy crop (alfalfa) is coupled to a processing plant and a power plant (integrated gasification combined cycle with hot gas cleanup) in a way that benefits the joint venture of an alfalfa producers cooperative and a utility entity. The sale of a mid-level protein animal feed co-product and electricity both support the production cost of alfalfa. The co-product/fuel processing operation uses a common train of equipment, thereby requiring neither product to carry the total cost. The power plant provides an important continuous demand for the feedstock and results in continuous supply of leaf product to provide a reliable supply needed for the leaf meal product.

  6. Standalone ethanol micro-reformer integrated on silicon technology for onboard production of hydrogen-rich gas.

    PubMed

    Pla, D; Salleras, M; Morata, A; Garbayo, I; Gerbolés, M; Sabaté, N; Divins, N J; Casanovas, A; Llorca, J; Tarancón, A

    2016-08-01

    A novel design of a silicon-based micro-reformer for onboard hydrogen generation from ethanol is presented in this work. The micro-reactor is fully fabricated with mainstream MEMS technology and consists of an active low-thermal-mass structure suspended by an insulating membrane. The suspended structure includes an embedded resistive metal heater and an array of ca. 20k vertically aligned through-silicon micro-channels per square centimetre. Each micro-channel is 500 μm in length and 50 μm in diameter allowing a unique micro-reformer configuration that presents a total surface per projected area of 16 cm(2) cm(-2) and per volume of 320 cm(2) cm(-3). The walls of the micro-channels become the active surface of the micro-reformer when coated with a homogenous thin film of Rh-Pd/CeO2 catalyst. The steam reforming of ethanol under controlled temperature conditions (using the embedded heater) and using the micro-reformer as a standalone device are evaluated. Fuel conversion rates above 94% and hydrogen selectivity values of ca. 70% were obtained when using operation conditions suitable for application in micro-solid oxide fuel cells (micro-SOFCs), i.e. 750 °C and fuel flows of 0.02 mlL min(-1) (enough to feed a one watt power source).

  7. Standalone ethanol micro-reformer integrated on silicon technology for onboard production of hydrogen-rich gas.

    PubMed

    Pla, D; Salleras, M; Morata, A; Garbayo, I; Gerbolés, M; Sabaté, N; Divins, N J; Casanovas, A; Llorca, J; Tarancón, A

    2016-08-01

    A novel design of a silicon-based micro-reformer for onboard hydrogen generation from ethanol is presented in this work. The micro-reactor is fully fabricated with mainstream MEMS technology and consists of an active low-thermal-mass structure suspended by an insulating membrane. The suspended structure includes an embedded resistive metal heater and an array of ca. 20k vertically aligned through-silicon micro-channels per square centimetre. Each micro-channel is 500 μm in length and 50 μm in diameter allowing a unique micro-reformer configuration that presents a total surface per projected area of 16 cm(2) cm(-2) and per volume of 320 cm(2) cm(-3). The walls of the micro-channels become the active surface of the micro-reformer when coated with a homogenous thin film of Rh-Pd/CeO2 catalyst. The steam reforming of ethanol under controlled temperature conditions (using the embedded heater) and using the micro-reformer as a standalone device are evaluated. Fuel conversion rates above 94% and hydrogen selectivity values of ca. 70% were obtained when using operation conditions suitable for application in micro-solid oxide fuel cells (micro-SOFCs), i.e. 750 °C and fuel flows of 0.02 mlL min(-1) (enough to feed a one watt power source). PMID:27378399

  8. Indomethacin Treatment of Mice with Premalignant Oral Lesions Sustains Cytokine Production and Slows Progression to Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Sara D.; Young, M. Rita I.

    2016-01-01

    Current treatment options for head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) patients are often ineffective due to tumor-localized and systemic immunosuppression. Using the 4-NQO mouse model of oral carcinogenesis, this study showed that premalignant oral lesion cells produce higher levels of the immune modulator, PGE2, compared to HNSCC cells. Inhibiting prostaglandin production of premalignant lesion cells with the pan-cyclooxygenase inhibitor indomethacin stimulated their induction of spleen cell cytokine production. In contrast, inhibiting HNSCC prostaglandin production did not stimulate their induction of spleen cell cytokine production. Treatment of mice bearing premalignant oral lesions with indomethacin slowed progression of premalignant oral lesions to HNSCC. Flow cytometric analysis of T cells in the regional lymph nodes of lesion-bearing mice receiving indomethacin treatment showed an increase in lymph node cellularity and in the absolute number of CD8+ T cells expressing IFN-γ compared to levels in lesion-bearing mice receiving diluent control treatment. The cytokine-stimulatory effect of indomethacin treatment was not localized to regional lymph nodes but was also seen in the spleen of mice with premalignant oral lesions. Together, these data suggest that inhibiting prostaglandin production at the premalignant lesion stage boosts immune capability and improves clinical outcomes. PMID:27713748

  9. Capacity Takes Flight: A Vehicle-Centered Approach to Sustainable Airspace Productivity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wing, David J.; Ballin, Mark G.; Barmore, Bryan E.

    2005-01-01

    The National Airspace System (NAS) faces a significant challenge. With the nation's economy growing stronger, and passengers returning to the skies, the demand for air transportation is steadily rising once again. The capacity of the current airspace system will struggle to keep pace in the near term, and with demand expected to double within a decade, air traffic delays are likely to escalate, soon becoming intolerable for aviation businesses. Recognition in the aviation community is forming that retaining a growing, thriving air transportation system for the benefit of the traveling public and the world economy will likely require implementing transformational ideas in air traffic management. This video illustrates an approach NASA is pursuing to this end: the notion that a major untapped resource available to air traffic management can be leveraged, the aircraft itself. The thesis presented is that implementation of vehicle-centric air traffic management capabilities into the NAS could have a profound, positive, and sustainable impact on system capacity, individual aircraft operators, and the economy through its dependency on air.

  10. Sophorolipids production from rice straw via SO3 micro-thermal explosion by Wickerhamiella domercqiae var. sophorolipid CGMCC 1576.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xin-Ge; Ma, Xiao-Jing; Yao, Ri-Sheng; Pan, Chun-Yu; He, Hua-Bing

    2016-12-01

    A novel lignocellulose material, holocellulose from rice straw via the pretreatment of SO3 micro-thermal explosion, was developed to produce sophorolipids (SLs) with Wickerhamiella domercqiae var. sophorolipid CGMCC 1576. The influence factors of inoculum dose, yeast extract concentration and pH regulators (chemical regents used for adjusting/influencing pH) was investigated and discussed. Results showed that W. domercqiae can grow in the rice straw holocellulose hydrolysate, and acquire relative high SL yield of 53.70 ± 2.61 g/L in shake flask culture. Inoculum dose, yeast extract concentration and pH regulator made obvious influence on fermentation parameters, especially on final broth pH and SLs production. Furthermore, there is a strong negative linear correlation existing between final broth pH and lactonic SL or ratio of lac SL/tot SL. Additionally, comparison between SL production and non-glucose carbon sources, culture methods, microbes in previous reports was carried out. These results will be benefit for acquiring SL mixture with suitable lac SL/tot SL ratio for specific purpose and scope economically. PMID:27568226

  11. Numerical assessment of residual formability in sheet metal products: towards design for sustainability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Falsafi, Javad; Demirci, Emrah; Silberschmidt, Vadim. V.

    2016-08-01

    A new computational scheme is presented to addresses cold recyclability of sheet- metal products. Cold recycling or re-manufacturing is an emerging area studied mostly empirically; in its current form, it lacks theoretical foundation especially in the area of sheet metals. In this study, a re-formability index was introduced based on post-manufacture residual formability in sheet metal products. This index accounts for possible levels of deformation along different strain paths based on Polar Effective Plastic Strain (PEPS) technique. PEPS is strain-path independent, hence provides a foundation for residual formability analysis. A user- friendly code was developed to implement this assessment in conjunction with advanced finite- element (FE) analysis. The significance of this approach is the advancement towards recycling of sheet metal products without melting them.

  12. Fungal Enzymes for Bio-Products from Sustainable and Waste Biomass.

    PubMed

    Gupta, Vijai K; Kubicek, Christian P; Berrin, Jean-Guy; Wilson, David W; Couturier, Marie; Berlin, Alex; Filho, Edivaldo X F; Ezeji, Thaddeus

    2016-07-01

    Lignocellulose, the most abundant renewable carbon source on earth, is the logical candidate to replace fossil carbon as the major biofuel raw material. Nevertheless, the technologies needed to convert lignocellulose into soluble products that can then be utilized by the chemical or fuel industries face several challenges. Enzymatic hydrolysis is of major importance, and we review the progress made in fungal enzyme technology over the past few years with major emphasis on (i) the enzymes needed for the conversion of polysaccharides (cellulose and hemicellulose) into soluble products, (ii) the potential uses of lignin degradation products, and (iii) current progress and bottlenecks for the use of the soluble lignocellulose derivatives in emerging biorefineries. PMID:27211037

  13. An economic, sustainability, and energetic model of biodiesel production from microalgae.

    PubMed

    Delrue, F; Setier, P-A; Sahut, C; Cournac, L; Roubaud, A; Peltier, G; Froment, A-K

    2012-05-01

    A new process evaluation methodology of microalgae biodiesel has been developed. Based on four evaluation criteria, i.e. the net energy ratio (NER), biodiesel production costs, greenhouse gases (GHG) emission rate and water footprint, the model compares various technologies for each step of the process, from cultivation to oil upgrading. An innovative pathway (hybrid raceway/PBR cultivation system, belt filter press for dewatering, wet lipid extraction, oil hydrotreating and anaerobic digestion of residues) shows good results in comparison to a reference pathway (doubled NER, lower GHG emission rate and water footprint). The production costs are still unfavourable (between 1.94 and 3.35 €/L of biodiesel). The most influential parameters have been targeted through a global sensitivity analysis and classified: (i) lipid productivity, (ii) the cultivation step, and (iii) the downstream processes. The use of low-carbon energy sources is required to achieve significant reductions of the biodiesel GHG emission rate compared to petroleum diesel.

  14. Sustainable power production in a membrane-less and mediator-less synthetic wastewater microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Aldrovandi, Aba; Marsili, Enrico; Stante, Loredana; Paganin, Patrizia; Tabacchioni, Silvia; Giordano, Andrea

    2009-07-01

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) fed with wastewater are currently considered a feasible strategy for production of renewable electricity. A membrane-less MFC with biological cathode was built from a compact wastewater treatment reactor and fed with synthetic wastewater. When operated with an external resistance of 250 Omega, the MFC produced a long-term power of about 70 mW/m(2) for 10 months. Denaturing Gradient Gel Electrophoresis (DGGE) analysis of the cathode biomass when the MFC was closed on a 2100 Omega external resistance showed that the sequenced bands were affiliated with Firmicutes, alpha-Proteobacteria,beta-Proteobacteria, gamma-Proteobacteria, and Bacteroidetes groups. When the external resistance was varied between 250 and 2100 Omega, minimum sustainable resistance decreased from 900 to 750 Omega, while maximum sustainable power output decreased from 32 to 28 mW/m(2). It is likely that these effects were caused by changes in the microbial ecology of anodic and cathodic biomass attached to the electrodes. Results suggest that cathodic biomass enrichment in "electroactive" bacteria may improve MFCs power output in a similar fashion to what has been already observed for anodic biomass.

  15. Biohydrogen and biomethane production sustained by untreated matrices and alternative application of compost waste.

    PubMed

    Arizzi, Mariaconcetta; Morra, Simone; Pugliese, Massimo; Gullino, Maria Lodovica; Gilardi, Gianfranco; Valetti, Francesca

    2016-10-01

    Biohydrogen and biomethane production offers many advantages for environmental protection over the fossil fuels or the existing physical-chemical methods for hydrogen and methane synthesis. The aim of this study is focused on the exploitation of several samples from the composting process: (1) a mixture of waste vegetable materials ("Mix"); (2) an unmatured compost sample (ACV15); and (3) three types of green compost with different properties and soil improver quality (ACV1, ACV2 and ACV3). These samples were tested for biohydrogen and biomethane production, thus obtaining second generation biofuels and resulting in a novel possibility to manage renewable waste biomasses. The ability of these substrates as original feed during dark fermentation was assayed anaerobically in batch, in glass bottles, in order to determine the optimal operating conditions for hydrogen and/or methane production using "Mix" or ACV1, ACV2 or ACV3 green compost and a limited amount of water. Hydrogen could be produced with a fast kinetic in the range 0.02-2.45mLH2g(-1)VS, while methane was produced with a slower kinetic in the range 0.5-8mLCH4g(-1)VS. It was observed that the composition of each sample influenced significantly the gas production. It was also observed that the addition of different water amounts play a crucial role in the development of hydrogen or methane. This parameter can be used to push towards the alternative production of one or another gas. Hydrogen and methane production was detected spontaneously from these matrices, without additional sources of nutrients or any pre-treatment, suggesting that they can be used as an additional inoculum or feed into single or two-stage plants. This might allow the use of compost with low quality as soil improver for alternative and further applications. PMID:27422046

  16. Indigenous sheep breeds in Brazil: potential role for contributing to the sustainability of production systems.

    PubMed

    de Azambuja Ribeiro, Edson Luis; González-García, Eliel

    2016-10-01

    Brazil has vocation for food production, both vegetable and animal, with the sheep industry having an expanding activity. However, productivity rates are often bellowing the possibilities of the country. Here, the roles the native breeds may develop in this expanding activity are described. Breeds considered are the hair breeds Santa Inês, Morada Nova, Somális Brasileira, Cariri, and Rabo Largo, and the wool breeds Bergamácia Brasileira, Crioula Lanada, and Pantaneira. These breeds have arisen in environments that may be considered difficult for other (exotic) breeds, less adapted to the local conditions. The hair breeds emerged in a semi-arid environment, a hot and with low rainfall region, of the Northeast of Brazil. The Crioula Lanada is the only breed that originated in the South, in a subtropical region with cold winters. The genetic group Pantaneira had its origin in an environment with higher humidity, especially soil moisture. The Bergamácia Brasileira derived from the Italian Bergamasca breed, which was first introduced in northeastern Brazil. Animals from these breeds have been regarded as robust, with lower requirements for maintenance, resistant to worms, and easy to handle. On the other side, as they are generally smaller than the exotic breeds used for meat production, they are often considered as less productive. In this literature review, a possibility of valorizing them, both as purebred or in crossbreeding programs, especially for meat production is addressed. These breeds are part of the genetic, historical, and cultural heritage of Brazil, and if used properly, according to the different environments and production systems, they can also be very important in the development of the sheep industry.

  17. Biohydrogen and biomethane production sustained by untreated matrices and alternative application of compost waste.

    PubMed

    Arizzi, Mariaconcetta; Morra, Simone; Pugliese, Massimo; Gullino, Maria Lodovica; Gilardi, Gianfranco; Valetti, Francesca

    2016-10-01

    Biohydrogen and biomethane production offers many advantages for environmental protection over the fossil fuels or the existing physical-chemical methods for hydrogen and methane synthesis. The aim of this study is focused on the exploitation of several samples from the composting process: (1) a mixture of waste vegetable materials ("Mix"); (2) an unmatured compost sample (ACV15); and (3) three types of green compost with different properties and soil improver quality (ACV1, ACV2 and ACV3). These samples were tested for biohydrogen and biomethane production, thus obtaining second generation biofuels and resulting in a novel possibility to manage renewable waste biomasses. The ability of these substrates as original feed during dark fermentation was assayed anaerobically in batch, in glass bottles, in order to determine the optimal operating conditions for hydrogen and/or methane production using "Mix" or ACV1, ACV2 or ACV3 green compost and a limited amount of water. Hydrogen could be produced with a fast kinetic in the range 0.02-2.45mLH2g(-1)VS, while methane was produced with a slower kinetic in the range 0.5-8mLCH4g(-1)VS. It was observed that the composition of each sample influenced significantly the gas production. It was also observed that the addition of different water amounts play a crucial role in the development of hydrogen or methane. This parameter can be used to push towards the alternative production of one or another gas. Hydrogen and methane production was detected spontaneously from these matrices, without additional sources of nutrients or any pre-treatment, suggesting that they can be used as an additional inoculum or feed into single or two-stage plants. This might allow the use of compost with low quality as soil improver for alternative and further applications.

  18. Ultraclean Fuels Production and Utilization for the Twenty-First Century: Advances toward Sustainable Transportation Fuels

    SciTech Connect

    Fox, Elise B.; Liu, Zhong-Wen; Liu, Zhao-Tie

    2013-11-21

    Ultraclean fuels production has become increasingly important as a method to help decrease emissions and allow the introduction of alternative feed stocks for transportation fuels. Established methods, such as Fischer-Tropsch, have seen a resurgence of interest as natural gas prices drop and existing petroleum resources require more intensive clean-up and purification to meet stringent environmental standards. This review covers some of the advances in deep desulfurization, synthesis gas conversion into fuels and feed stocks that were presented at the 245th American Chemical Society Spring Annual Meeting in New Orleans, LA in the Division of Energy and Fuels symposium on "Ultraclean Fuels Production and Utilization".

  19. Environmentally sustainable production of food, feed and fuel from natural resources in the tropics.

    PubMed

    Preston, T Reg

    2009-10-01

    Responding to the challenges posed by global warming, peak oil and biofuels will require a paradigm shift in the practice of agriculture and in the role of live stock within the farming system. Farming systems should aim at maximizing plant biomass production from locally available diversified resources, processing of the biomass on farm to provide food, feed and energy and recycling of all waste materials. The approach that is the subject of this paper is that the generation of electricity can be a by-product of food/feed production. The concept is the fractionation of biomass into inedible cell wall material that can be converted to an inflammable gas by gasification, the gas in turn being the source of fuel for internal combustion engines driving electrical generators. The cell contents and related structures such as tree leaves are used as human food or animal feed. As well as providing food and feed the model is highly appropriate for decentralized small scale production of electricity in rural areas. It also offers opportunities for sequestration of carbon in the form of biochar the solid residue remaining after gasification of the biomass.

  20. Environmentally sustainable production of food, feed and fuel from natural resources in the tropics.

    PubMed

    Preston, T Reg

    2009-08-01

    Responding to the challenges posed by global warming, peak oil and biofuels will require a paradigm shift in the practice of agriculture and in the role of live stock within the farming system. Farming systems should aim at maximizing plant biomass production from locally available diversified resources, processing of the biomass on farm to provide food, feed and energy and recycling of all waste materials. The approach that is the subject of this paper is that the generation of electricity can be a by-product of food/feed production. The concept is the fractionation of biomass into inedible cell wall material that can be converted to an inflammable gas by gasification, the gas in turn being the source of fuel for internal combustion engines driving electrical generators. The cell contents and related structures such as tree leaves are used as human food or animal feed. As well as providing food and feed the model is highly appropriate for decentralized small scale production of electricity in rural areas. It also offers opportunities for sequestration of carbon in the form of biochar the solid residue remaining after gasification of the biomass.

  1. Ameliorating soil acidity of tropical Oxisols by liming for sustainable crop production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The greatest potential for expanding the world’s agricultural frontier lies in the savanna regions of the tropics, which are dominated by Oxisols. Soil acidity and low native fertility, however, are major constraints for crop production on tropical Oxisols. Soil acidification is an ongoing natural p...

  2. Environmentally sustainable production of food, feed and fuel from natural resources in the tropics.

    PubMed

    Preston, T Reg

    2009-10-01

    Responding to the challenges posed by global warming, peak oil and biofuels will require a paradigm shift in the practice of agriculture and in the role of live stock within the farming system. Farming systems should aim at maximizing plant biomass production from locally available diversified resources, processing of the biomass on farm to provide food, feed and energy and recycling of all waste materials. The approach that is the subject of this paper is that the generation of electricity can be a by-product of food/feed production. The concept is the fractionation of biomass into inedible cell wall material that can be converted to an inflammable gas by gasification, the gas in turn being the source of fuel for internal combustion engines driving electrical generators. The cell contents and related structures such as tree leaves are used as human food or animal feed. As well as providing food and feed the model is highly appropriate for decentralized small scale production of electricity in rural areas. It also offers opportunities for sequestration of carbon in the form of biochar the solid residue remaining after gasification of the biomass. PMID:19728132

  3. Environmentally sustainable production of food, feed and fuel from natural resources in the tropics.

    PubMed

    Preston, T Reg

    2009-08-01

    Responding to the challenges posed by global warming, peak oil and biofuels will require a paradigm shift in the practice of agriculture and in the role of live stock within the farming system. Farming systems should aim at maximizing plant biomass production from locally available diversified resources, processing of the biomass on farm to provide food, feed and energy and recycling of all waste materials. The approach that is the subject of this paper is that the generation of electricity can be a by-product of food/feed production. The concept is the fractionation of biomass into inedible cell wall material that can be converted to an inflammable gas by gasification, the gas in turn being the source of fuel for internal combustion engines driving electrical generators. The cell contents and related structures such as tree leaves are used as human food or animal feed. As well as providing food and feed the model is highly appropriate for decentralized small scale production of electricity in rural areas. It also offers opportunities for sequestration of carbon in the form of biochar the solid residue remaining after gasification of the biomass. PMID:19011987

  4. Water productivity, yield, and berry composition in sustained versus regulated deficit irrigation of Merlot grapevines

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The wine grape cultivar Merlot (Vitis vinifera L.) was irrigated at incremental fractions of estimated crop evapotranspiration or a regulated deficit (RDI) regime to identify which practice best optimized water productivity and berry composition without compromising yield. Three severities of susta...

  5. Agroecology and the Sustainable Production of Food and Fiber: Emergy Evaluation of Agriculture in the Montado

    EPA Science Inventory

    The silvopastoral, agricultural system of the montado in Southern Portugal is an example of the self-organization of an agroecological system adapted to the climate and soil conditions of the Mediterranean basin. This system with its consistent production of food, fiber, and ecos...

  6. Fast-growing species and sustainability (productivity and site dynamics of three fast-growing species)

    SciTech Connect

    Reddy, A.N.; Sugur, G.V.

    1992-12-31

    Growth of three fast-growing species, raised in a high rainfall zone (2000-2500 mm per annum) has been compared, and the associated site dynamics studies in the Western Ghat area of Karnataka State. Two fast-growing exotics, Acacia auriculiformis and Castuarina equisitifolia, were planted on degraded, open sites at high planting densities (5000 plants ha{sup {minus}1}), and one native fast-growing species. Dendrocalamus strictus, was planted on a good site under seasonal irrigation and wider spacing (500 plants ha{sup {minus}1}). These were studies at the age of 5 years for their comparative productivity, quantity of litter fall and changes in nutrient and microbial status. Among these species, A. auriculiformis recorded the highest total productivity closely followed by D. strictus. However, the MAI after 5 years indicated a higher productivity for D. strictus, when culm production attained harvestable size. C. equisitifolia was a close third. It was also found that D. strictus produced higher biomass at lower planting densities, under better sites and management. The litter fall and changes in nutrient status indicated the highest efficiency in A. auriculiformis, followed by C. equisitifolia. It was concluded that the higher planting density was the major contributing factor; the values were comparatively low for D. strictus mainly owing to a lower stocking density of plants.

  7. Sustainability of US organic beef and dairy production systems: soil, plant and cattle interactions

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In 2010, the National Organic Program implemented a rule stating that pasture must be a significant source of feed in organic ruminant systems. This article will focus on how this rule has impacted the management, economics and nutritional value of products derived from organic ruminant systems and ...

  8. Sustainability and Productivity Indicators with Sensitivity Truth Table for Unskilled Thai Labour Reverse Migration

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Panaingvait, Poj; Chakpitak, Nopasit; Yodmongkol, Pitipong; Sureephong, Paradorn; Nimmonrat, Acrapol

    2014-01-01

    Thailand, a developing country, had labours migrating from the agriculture into the industrial due to higher pay in the past. However the economic force has made the government policy to focus on creativity and developing technology towards automatic production. Unskilled Thai labours are facing a big challenge after retirement, which is called…

  9. Green Net Regional Product for the San Luis Basin, Colorado: An Economic Measure of Regional Sustainability

    EPA Science Inventory

    This paper presents the data sources and methodology used to estimate Green Net Regional Product (GNRP), a green accounting approach, for the San Luis Basin (SLB). GNRP is equal to aggregate consumption minus the depreciation of man-made and natural capital. We measure the move...

  10. Utilization of oil extracted from spent coffee grounds for sustainable production of polyhydroxyalkanoates.

    PubMed

    Obruca, Stanislav; Petrik, Sinisa; Benesova, Pavla; Svoboda, Zdenek; Eremka, Libor; Marova, Ivana

    2014-07-01

    Spent coffee grounds (SCG), an important waste product of the coffee industry, contain approximately 15 wt% of coffee oil. The aim of this work was to investigate the utilization of oil extracted from SCG as a substrate for the production of poly(3-hydroxybutyrate) (PHB) by Cupriavidus necator H16. When compared to other waste/inexpensive oils, the utilization of coffee oil resulted in the highest biomass as well as PHB yields. Since the correlation of PHB yields and the acid value of oil indicated a positive effect of the presence of free fatty acids in oil on PHB production (correlation coefficient R (2) = 0.9058), superior properties of coffee oil can be probably attributed to the high content of free fatty acids which can be simply utilized by the bacteria culture. Employing the fed-batch mode of cultivation, the PHB yields, the PHB content in biomass, the volumetric productivity, and the Y P/S yield coefficient reached 49.4 g/l, 89.1 wt%, 1.33 g/(l h), and 0.82 g per g of oil, respectively. SCG are annually produced worldwide in extensive amounts and are disposed as solid waste. Hence, the utilization of coffee oil extracted from SCG is likely to improve significantly the economic aspects of PHB production. Moreover, since oil extraction decreased the calorific value of SCG by only about 9 % (from 19.61 to 17.86 MJ/kg), residual SCG after oil extraction can be used as fuel to at least partially cover heat and energy demands of fermentation, which should even improve the economic feasibility of the process.

  11. On-farm research in Western Siberia: Potential of adapted management practices for sustainable intensification of crop production systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kühling, Insa; Trautz, Dieter

    2015-04-01

    Western Siberia is of global significance in terms of agricultural production, carbon sequestration and biodiversity preservation. Abandonment of arable land and changes in the use of permanent grasslands were triggered by the dissolution of the Soviet Union in and the following collapse of the state farm system. The peatlands, forests and steppe soils of Western Siberia are one of the most important carbon sinks worldwide. These carbon stocks are, if deteriorated, an important source of radiative forcing even in comparison to anthropogenic emissions. This situation is aggravated by recent and future developments in agricultural land use in the southern part of Western Siberia, in particular in Tyumen province. The increase of drought risk caused by climate change will led to more challenges in these water-limited agricultural production systems. The German-Russian interdisciplinary research project "SASCHA" aims to provide sustainable land management practices to cope with these far-reaching changes for Tyumen province. In particular, on farm scale agricultural strategies are being developed for increased efficiencies in crop production systems. Therefore a 3-factorial field trial with different tillage and seeding operations was installed with spring wheat on 10 ha under practical conditions in 2013. Within all combinations of tillage (no-till/conventional), seed rate (usual/reduced) and seed depth (usual/shallower) various soil parameters as well as plant development and yield components were intensively monitored during the growing seasons. Results after 2-years show significant impacts of the tillage operation on soil moisture and soil temperature. Also a higher trend in nitrogen mineralization could be observed without tillage. Plant development in terms of phenological growth stages took place simultaneously in all variants. Under no-till regime we measured slightly higher grain yields and significant advantages in protein yields. In conjunction with

  12. Dynamics of production of iodine atoms by dissociation of iodides in a pulsed self-sustained discharge

    SciTech Connect

    Vagin, Nikolai P; Kochetov, Igor' V; Napartovich, A P; Yuryshev, Nikolai N

    2013-07-31

    Absorption at the laser transition has been used for the first time to assess the evolution of concentration of iodine atoms in a pulsed self-sustained discharge in mixtures of iodides with a buffer gas such as molecular nitrogen and helium. Dynamics of the iodine atom production is studied by the method of absorption spectroscopy. The dissociation of C{sub n}F{sub 2n+1}I and CnH{sub 2n+1}I (n = 1, 2) iodides is investigated. The energy required to produce atomic iodine is evaluated. The experimental data obtained for CF{sub 3}I are compared with the results of numerical simulations, their reasonable agreement being demonstrated. (active media)

  13. Size effect of anaerobic granular sludge on biogas production: A micro scale study.

    PubMed

    Wu, Jing; Afridi, Zohaib Ur Rehman; Cao, Zhi Ping; Zhang, Zhong Liang; Poncin, Souhila; Li, Huai Zhi; Zuo, Jian E; Wang, Kai Jun

    2016-02-01

    This study investigated the influence of anaerobic granular sludge size on its bioactivity at COD concentration of 1000, 3000 and 6000 mg/L. Based on size, granules were categorized as large (3-3.5 mm), medium (1.5-2 mm) and small (0.5-1 mm). A positive relationship was obtained between granule size and biogas production rate. For instance, at COD 6000 mg/L, large granules had highest biogas production rate of 0.031 m(3)/kgVSS/d while medium and small granules had 0.016 and 0.006 m(3)/kgVSS/d respectively. The results were reaffirmed by applying modified Fick's law of diffusion. Diffusion rates of substrate for large, medium and small granules were 1.67×10(-3), 6.1×10(-4)and 1.8×10(-4) mg/s respectively at that COD. Large granules were highly bio-active due to their internal structure, i.e. big pore size, high porosity and short diffusion distance as compared to medium and small granules, thus large granules could improve the performance of reactor.

  14. Size effect of anaerobic granular sludge on biogas production: A micro scale study.

    PubMed

    Wu, Jing; Afridi, Zohaib Ur Rehman; Cao, Zhi Ping; Zhang, Zhong Liang; Poncin, Souhila; Li, Huai Zhi; Zuo, Jian E; Wang, Kai Jun

    2016-02-01

    This study investigated the influence of anaerobic granular sludge size on its bioactivity at COD concentration of 1000, 3000 and 6000 mg/L. Based on size, granules were categorized as large (3-3.5 mm), medium (1.5-2 mm) and small (0.5-1 mm). A positive relationship was obtained between granule size and biogas production rate. For instance, at COD 6000 mg/L, large granules had highest biogas production rate of 0.031 m(3)/kgVSS/d while medium and small granules had 0.016 and 0.006 m(3)/kgVSS/d respectively. The results were reaffirmed by applying modified Fick's law of diffusion. Diffusion rates of substrate for large, medium and small granules were 1.67×10(-3), 6.1×10(-4)and 1.8×10(-4) mg/s respectively at that COD. Large granules were highly bio-active due to their internal structure, i.e. big pore size, high porosity and short diffusion distance as compared to medium and small granules, thus large granules could improve the performance of reactor. PMID:26708484

  15. Examining the ecosystem health and sustainability of the world's largest mangrove forest using multi-temporal MODIS products.

    PubMed

    Ishtiaque, Asif; Myint, Soe W; Wang, Chuyuan

    2016-11-01

    Sweeping across Bangladesh and India, the Sundarbans forest is the world's largest contiguous mangrove forest. Although the human population density is high at the edge, Sundarbans has not encountered significant areal transformation in the last four decades. However, we argue that forest degradation can occur discontinuously within the forest without alteration of the entire forest area. In this paper, we used MODIS land products to compare the spatiotemporal ecological dynamics of the Bangladesh and Indian part of this mangrove forest between 2000 and 2010. We used the following 5 ecological parameters for our analysis: the Percent Tree Cover (PTC), Enhanced Vegetation Index (EVI), Net Primary Productivity (NPP), Leaf Area Index (LAI), and Evapotranspiration (ET). Our pixel-based time-series trend analysis for each MODIS image stack, using an ordinary least square (OLS) regression method, showed that forest degradation is happening in fragmented parcels within the forest. The degradation rate is comparatively higher in the Bangladesh part than in the Indian part of Sundarbans. Compartments 8, 10, 12, and 15 in the Bangladesh part, in particular, show high degradation, while compartment 48 and the southern edge of 45 show slight increases in PTC or EVI. Forest degradation in the Indian part of the forest is evident in the National Park and Reserve Forest blocks; however, no substantial degradation is evident in the western section. We have identified certain anthropogenic stressors (i.e., oil pollution, shrimp farming) and natural stressors (i.e., increased salinity, cyclones, forest fire) which might be responsible for the observed degradation. We have provided sustainable planning options and policy transformation alternatives for those areas under pressure from these stressors. We anticipate that our analysis of forest degradation will help management agencies, conservators, and policy makers achieve better management of this world's largest mangrove forest for

  16. Examining the ecosystem health and sustainability of the world's largest mangrove forest using multi-temporal MODIS products.

    PubMed

    Ishtiaque, Asif; Myint, Soe W; Wang, Chuyuan

    2016-11-01

    Sweeping across Bangladesh and India, the Sundarbans forest is the world's largest contiguous mangrove forest. Although the human population density is high at the edge, Sundarbans has not encountered significant areal transformation in the last four decades. However, we argue that forest degradation can occur discontinuously within the forest without alteration of the entire forest area. In this paper, we used MODIS land products to compare the spatiotemporal ecological dynamics of the Bangladesh and Indian part of this mangrove forest between 2000 and 2010. We used the following 5 ecological parameters for our analysis: the Percent Tree Cover (PTC), Enhanced Vegetation Index (EVI), Net Primary Productivity (NPP), Leaf Area Index (LAI), and Evapotranspiration (ET). Our pixel-based time-series trend analysis for each MODIS image stack, using an ordinary least square (OLS) regression method, showed that forest degradation is happening in fragmented parcels within the forest. The degradation rate is comparatively higher in the Bangladesh part than in the Indian part of Sundarbans. Compartments 8, 10, 12, and 15 in the Bangladesh part, in particular, show high degradation, while compartment 48 and the southern edge of 45 show slight increases in PTC or EVI. Forest degradation in the Indian part of the forest is evident in the National Park and Reserve Forest blocks; however, no substantial degradation is evident in the western section. We have identified certain anthropogenic stressors (i.e., oil pollution, shrimp farming) and natural stressors (i.e., increased salinity, cyclones, forest fire) which might be responsible for the observed degradation. We have provided sustainable planning options and policy transformation alternatives for those areas under pressure from these stressors. We anticipate that our analysis of forest degradation will help management agencies, conservators, and policy makers achieve better management of this world's largest mangrove forest for

  17. Sustainable source of omega-3 eicosapentaenoic acid from metabolically engineered Yarrowia lipolytica: from fundamental research to commercial production.

    PubMed

    Xie, Dongming; Jackson, Ethel N; Zhu, Quinn

    2015-02-01

    The omega-3 fatty acids, cis-5, 8, 11, 14, and 17-eicosapentaenoic acid (C20:5; EPA) and cis-4, 7, 10, 13, 16, and 19-docosahexaenoic acid (C22:6; DHA), have wide-ranging benefits in improving heart health, immune function, mental health, and infant cognitive development. Currently, the major source for EPA and DHA is from fish oil, and a minor source of DHA is from microalgae. With the increased demand for EPA and DHA, DuPont has developed a clean and sustainable source of the omega-3 fatty acid EPA through fermentation using metabolically engineered strains of Yarrowia lipolytica. In this mini-review, we will focus on DuPont's technology for EPA production. Specifically, EPA biosynthetic and supporting pathways have been introduced into the oleaginous yeast to synthesize and accumulate EPA under fermentation conditions. This Yarrowia platform can also produce tailored omega-3 (EPA, DHA) and/or omega-6 (ARA, GLA) fatty acid mixtures in the cellular lipid profiles. Fundamental research such as metabolic engineering for strain construction, high-throughput screening for strain selection, fermentation process development, and process scale-up were all needed to achieve the high levels of EPA titer, rate, and yield required for commercial application. Here, we summarize how we have combined the fundamental bioscience and the industrial engineering skills to achieve large-scale production of Yarrowia biomass containing high amounts of EPA, which led to two commercial products, New Harvest™ EPA oil and Verlasso® salmon.

  18. Smart investments in sustainable food production: revisiting mixed crop-livestock systems.

    PubMed

    Herrero, M; Thornton, P K; Notenbaert, A M; Wood, S; Msangi, S; Freeman, H A; Bossio, D; Dixon, J; Peters, M; van de Steeg, J; Lynam, J; Parthasarathy Rao, P; Macmillan, S; Gerard, B; McDermott, J; Seré, C; Rosegrant, M

    2010-02-12

    Farmers in mixed crop-livestock systems produce about half of the world's food. In small holdings around the world, livestock are reared mostly on grass, browse, and nonfood biomass from maize, millet, rice, and sorghum crops and in their turn supply manure and traction for future crops. Animals act as insurance against hard times and supply farmers with a source of regular income from sales of milk, eggs, and other products. Thus, faced with population growth and climate change, small-holder farmers should be the first target for policies to intensify production by carefully managed inputs of fertilizer, water, and feed to minimize waste and environmental impact, supported by improved access to markets, new varieties, and technologies.

  19. Micro hydrogel tubes for culture of oil production microbes in an open environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mikami, K.; Onoe, H.; Miki, N.

    2014-11-01

    This paper proposes a microbe culture technology in an open environment using hydrogel microtubes. Oil production microbes, such as Aurantiochytrium, have been discovered and are currently studied to produce fuels instead of fossil fuels. Scale-up of the culture systems of such microbes is critical for practical applications. The microbe culture in a nutrition-rich open environment, such as lakes and sewage plants, is preferable in terms of scales and cost, however, contamination of other native microbes is often fatal to the target microbes. Hydrogel microtubes that can be manufactured by microfluidic devices can encapsulate the microbes and allow oxygen and nutrition to diffuse through the tube walls while preventing other microbes from intruding inside. Therefore, the microbes can be cultured in any environments and scale-up is also possible. In this paper, we demonstrate that the contamination of microbes was prevented and target microbes were successfully cultured inside the microtube.

  20. Cyanobacteria: Photoautotrophic Microbial Factories for the Sustainable Synthesis of Industrial Products.

    PubMed

    Lau, Nyok-Sean; Matsui, Minami; Abdullah, Amirul Al-Ashraf

    2015-01-01

    Cyanobacteria are widely distributed Gram-negative bacteria with a long evolutionary history and the only prokaryotes that perform plant-like oxygenic photosynthesis. Cyanobacteria possess several advantages as hosts for biotechnological applications, including simple growth requirements, ease of genetic manipulation, and attractive platforms for carbon neutral production process. The use of photosynthetic cyanobacteria to directly convert carbon dioxide to biofuels is an emerging area of interest. Equipped with the ability to degrade environmental pollutants and remove heavy metals, cyanobacteria are promising tools for bioremediation and wastewater treatment. Cyanobacteria are characterized by the ability to produce a spectrum of bioactive compounds with antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral, and antialgal properties that are of pharmaceutical and agricultural significance. Several strains of cyanobacteria are also sources of high-value chemicals, for example, pigments, vitamins, and enzymes. Recent advances in biotechnological approaches have facilitated researches directed towards maximizing the production of desired products in cyanobacteria and realizing the potential of these bacteria for various industrial applications. In this review, the potential of cyanobacteria as sources of energy, bioactive compounds, high-value chemicals, and tools for aquatic bioremediation and recent progress in engineering cyanobacteria for these bioindustrial applications are discussed.

  1. The central role of agricultural water-use productivity in sustainable water management (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gleick, P. H.

    2013-12-01

    As global and regional populations continue to rise for the next several decades, the need to grow more food will worsen old -- and produce new -- challenges for water resources. Expansion of irrigated agriculture is slowing due to constraints on land and water, and as a result, some have argued that future new food demands will only be met through improvements in agricultural productivity on existing irrigated and rainfed cropland, reductions in field losses and food waste, and social changes such as dietary preferences. This talk will address the central role that improvements in water-use productivity can play in the food/water/population nexus. In particular, the ability to grow more food with less water will have a great influence on whether future food demands will be met successfully. Such improvements can come about through changes in technology, regulatory systems, economic incentives and disincentives, and education of water users. Example of potential savings from three different strategies to improve agricultural water productivity in California. (From Pacific Institute).

  2. Cyanobacteria: Photoautotrophic Microbial Factories for the Sustainable Synthesis of Industrial Products.

    PubMed

    Lau, Nyok-Sean; Matsui, Minami; Abdullah, Amirul Al-Ashraf

    2015-01-01

    Cyanobacteria are widely distributed Gram-negative bacteria with a long evolutionary history and the only prokaryotes that perform plant-like oxygenic photosynthesis. Cyanobacteria possess several advantages as hosts for biotechnological applications, including simple growth requirements, ease of genetic manipulation, and attractive platforms for carbon neutral production process. The use of photosynthetic cyanobacteria to directly convert carbon dioxide to biofuels is an emerging area of interest. Equipped with the ability to degrade environmental pollutants and remove heavy metals, cyanobacteria are promising tools for bioremediation and wastewater treatment. Cyanobacteria are characterized by the ability to produce a spectrum of bioactive compounds with antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral, and antialgal properties that are of pharmaceutical and agricultural significance. Several strains of cyanobacteria are also sources of high-value chemicals, for example, pigments, vitamins, and enzymes. Recent advances in biotechnological approaches have facilitated researches directed towards maximizing the production of desired products in cyanobacteria and realizing the potential of these bacteria for various industrial applications. In this review, the potential of cyanobacteria as sources of energy, bioactive compounds, high-value chemicals, and tools for aquatic bioremediation and recent progress in engineering cyanobacteria for these bioindustrial applications are discussed. PMID:26199945

  3. Cyanobacteria: Photoautotrophic Microbial Factories for the Sustainable Synthesis of Industrial Products

    PubMed Central

    Lau, Nyok-Sean; Matsui, Minami; Abdullah, Amirul Al-Ashraf

    2015-01-01

    Cyanobacteria are widely distributed Gram-negative bacteria with a long evolutionary history and the only prokaryotes that perform plant-like oxygenic photosynthesis. Cyanobacteria possess several advantages as hosts for biotechnological applications, including simple growth requirements, ease of genetic manipulation, and attractive platforms for carbon neutral production process. The use of photosynthetic cyanobacteria to directly convert carbon dioxide to biofuels is an emerging area of interest. Equipped with the ability to degrade environmental pollutants and remove heavy metals, cyanobacteria are promising tools for bioremediation and wastewater treatment. Cyanobacteria are characterized by the ability to produce a spectrum of bioactive compounds with antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral, and antialgal properties that are of pharmaceutical and agricultural significance. Several strains of cyanobacteria are also sources of high-value chemicals, for example, pigments, vitamins, and enzymes. Recent advances in biotechnological approaches have facilitated researches directed towards maximizing the production of desired products in cyanobacteria and realizing the potential of these bacteria for various industrial applications. In this review, the potential of cyanobacteria as sources of energy, bioactive compounds, high-value chemicals, and tools for aquatic bioremediation and recent progress in engineering cyanobacteria for these bioindustrial applications are discussed. PMID:26199945

  4. Exergy sustainability.

    SciTech Connect

    Robinett, Rush D. III; Wilson, David Gerald; Reed, Alfred W.

    2006-05-01

    Exergy is the elixir of life. Exergy is that portion of energy available to do work. Elixir is defined as a substance held capable of prolonging life indefinitely, which implies sustainability of life. In terms of mathematics and engineering, exergy sustainability is defined as the continuous compensation of irreversible entropy production in an open system with an impedance and capacity-matched persistent exergy source. Irreversible and nonequilibrium thermodynamic concepts are combined with self-organizing systems theories as well as nonlinear control and stability analyses to explain this definition. In particular, this paper provides a missing link in the analysis of self-organizing systems: a tie between irreversible thermodynamics and Hamiltonian systems. As a result of this work, the concept of ''on the edge of chaos'' is formulated as a set of necessary and sufficient conditions for stability and performance of sustainable systems. This interplay between exergy rate and irreversible entropy production rate can be described as Yin and Yang control: the dialectic synthesis of opposing power flows. In addition, exergy is shown to be a fundamental driver and necessary input for sustainable systems, since exergy input in the form of power is a single point of failure for self-organizing, adaptable systems.

  5. Frontal White Matter Tracts Sustaining Speech Production in Primary Progressive Aphasia

    PubMed Central

    Caverzasi, Eduardo; Binney, Richard J.; Henry, Maya L.; Lobach, Iryna; Block, Nikolas; Amirbekian, Bagrat; Dronkers, Nina; Miller, Bruce L.; Henry, Roland G.; Gorno-Tempini, Maria Luisa

    2014-01-01

    In primary progressive aphasia (PPA), speech and language difficulties are caused by neurodegeneration of specific brain networks. In the nonfluent/agrammatic variant (nfvPPA), motor speech and grammatical deficits are associated with atrophy in a left fronto-insular-striatal network previously implicated in speech production. In vivo dissection of the crossing white matter (WM) tracts within this “speech production network” is complex and has rarely been performed in health or in PPA. We hypothesized that damage to these tracts would be specific to nfvPPA and would correlate with differential aspects of the patients' fluency abilities. We prospectively studied 25 PPA and 21 healthy individuals who underwent extensive cognitive testing and 3 T MRI. Using residual bootstrap Q-ball probabilistic tractography on high angular resolution diffusion-weighted imaging (HARDI), we reconstructed pathways connecting posterior inferior frontal, inferior premotor, insula, supplementary motor area (SMA) complex, striatum, and standard ventral and dorsal language pathways. We extracted tract-specific diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) metrics to assess changes across PPA variants and perform brain–behavioral correlations. Significant WM changes in the left intrafrontal and frontostriatal pathways were found in nfvPPA, but not in the semantic or logopenic variants. Correlations between tract-specific DTI metrics with cognitive scores confirmed the specific involvement of this anterior–dorsal network in fluency and suggested a preferential role of a posterior premotor-SMA pathway in motor speech. This study shows that left WM pathways connecting the speech production network are selectively damaged in nfvPPA and suggests that different tracts within this system are involved in subcomponents of fluency. These findings emphasize the emerging role of diffusion imaging in the differential diagnosis of neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:25031413

  6. Algal photosynthesis as the primary driver for a sustainable development in energy, feed, and food production.

    PubMed

    Anemaet, Ida G; Bekker, Martijn; Hellingwerf, Klaas J

    2010-11-01

    High oil prices and global warming that accompany the use of fossil fuels are an incentive to find alternative forms of energy supply. Photosynthetic biofuel production represents one of these since for this, one uses renewable resources. Sunlight is used for the conversion of water and CO₂ into biomass. Two strategies are used in parallel: plant-based production via sugar fermentation into ethanol and biodiesel production through transesterification. Both, however, exacerbate other problems, including regional nutrient balancing and the world's food supply, and suffer from the modest efficiency of photosynthesis. Maximizing the efficiency of natural and engineered photosynthesis is therefore of utmost importance. Algal photosynthesis is the system of choice for this particularly for energy applications. Complete conversion of CO₂ into biomass is not necessary for this. Innovative methods of synthetic biology allow one to combine photosynthetic and fermentative metabolism via the so-called Photanol approach to form biofuel directly from Calvin cycle intermediates through use of the naturally transformable cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803. Beyond providing transport energy and chemical feedstocks, photosynthesis will continue to be used for food and feed applications. Also for this application, arguments of efficiency will become more and more important as the size of the world population continues to increase. Photosynthetic cells can be used for food applications in various innovative forms, e.g., as a substitute for the fish proteins in the diet supplied to carnivorous fish or perhaps--after acid hydrolysis--as a complex, animal-free serum for growth of mammalian cells in vitro.

  7. Algal Photosynthesis as the Primary Driver for a Sustainable Development in Energy, Feed, and Food Production

    PubMed Central

    Anemaet, Ida G.; Bekker, Martijn

    2010-01-01

    High oil prices and global warming that accompany the use of fossil fuels are an incentive to find alternative forms of energy supply. Photosynthetic biofuel production represents one of these since for this, one uses renewable resources. Sunlight is used for the conversion of water and CO2 into biomass. Two strategies are used in parallel: plant-based production via sugar fermentation into ethanol and biodiesel production through transesterification. Both, however, exacerbate other problems, including regional nutrient balancing and the world's food supply, and suffer from the modest efficiency of photosynthesis. Maximizing the efficiency of natural and engineered photosynthesis is therefore of utmost importance. Algal photosynthesis is the system of choice for this particularly for energy applications. Complete conversion of CO2 into biomass is not necessary for this. Innovative methods of synthetic biology allow one to combine photosynthetic and fermentative metabolism via the so-called Photanol approach to form biofuel directly from Calvin cycle intermediates through use of the naturally transformable cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803. Beyond providing transport energy and chemical feedstocks, photosynthesis will continue to be used for food and feed applications. Also for this application, arguments of efficiency will become more and more important as the size of the world population continues to increase. Photosynthetic cells can be used for food applications in various innovative forms, e.g., as a substitute for the fish proteins in the diet supplied to carnivorous fish or perhaps—after acid hydrolysis—as a complex, animal-free serum for growth of mammalian cells in vitro. PMID:20640935

  8. METHOD OF INITIATING AND SUSTAINING AN ENERGETIC PLASMA FOR NEUTRON PRODUCTION

    DOEpatents

    Bell, P.R.; Mackin, R.J. Jr.; Simon, A.

    1961-08-22

    A method for producing an energetic plasma for neutron production and for faeling this plasma once it is formed is described. The plasma is initially fonmed as set forth in U. S. Patent No. 2,969,308. After the plasma is formed, cold neutral particles with an energy of at least 1 Kev are injected in a radial directinn and transverse to the axis of the device. These cold particles are substituted for the molecular ion injection and are used for fueling the plasma device on a continuous regulated basis in order to maintain a reaction temperature of about 60 Kev for producing neutrons. (AE C)

  9. New Acid Stimulation Treatment to Sustain Production - Los Angeles Downtown Oil Field

    SciTech Connect

    Russell, Richard C.

    2003-03-10

    Hydrochloric acid stimulation was successfully used on several wells in the Los Angeles Downtown Field, in the past. The decline rates after stimulation were relatively high and generally within six months to a year, production rates have returned to their prestimulation rates. The wells in Los Angeles Downtown Field have strong scale producing tendencies and many wells are treated for scale control. Four wells were carefully selected that are representative of wells that had a tendency to form calcium carbonate scale and had shown substantial decline over the last few years.

  10. Stoichiometrically controlled production of bimetallic Gold-Silver alloy colloids using micro-alga cultures.

    PubMed

    Dahoumane, Si Amar; Wijesekera, Kushlani; Filipe, Carlos D M; Brennan, John D

    2014-02-15

    This paper reports the production of well-defined, highly stable Ag-Au alloy nanoparticles (NPs) using living cells of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, with the composition of the bimetallic alloys being solely determined by the stoichiometric ratio in which the metal salts were added to the cultures. The NPs exhibited a single, well-defined surface plasmon resonance (SPR) band confirming that they were made of a homogeneous population of bimetallic alloys. Particle creation by the cells occurred in three stages: (1) internalization of the noble metals by the cells and their reduction resulting in the formation of the NPs; (2) entrapment of the NPs in the extracellular matrix (ECM) surrounding the cells, where they are colloidally stabilized; and (3) release of the NPs from the ECM to the culture medium. We also investigated the effect of the addition of the metals salts on cell viability and the impact on characteristics of the NPs formed. When silver was added to the cultures, cell viability was decreased and this resulted in a ~30nm red shift on the SPR band due to changes in the surrounding environment into which the NPs were released. The same observations (in SPR and cell viability) was made when gold was added to a final concentration of 2 × 10(-4)M, but not when the concentration was equal to 10(-4)M, where cell viability was high and the red shift was negligible. PMID:24370403

  11. Stoichiometrically controlled production of bimetallic Gold-Silver alloy colloids using micro-alga cultures.

    PubMed

    Dahoumane, Si Amar; Wijesekera, Kushlani; Filipe, Carlos D M; Brennan, John D

    2014-02-15

    This paper reports the production of well-defined, highly stable Ag-Au alloy nanoparticles (NPs) using living cells of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, with the composition of the bimetallic alloys being solely determined by the stoichiometric ratio in which the metal salts were added to the cultures. The NPs exhibited a single, well-defined surface plasmon resonance (SPR) band confirming that they were made of a homogeneous population of bimetallic alloys. Particle creation by the cells occurred in three stages: (1) internalization of the noble metals by the cells and their reduction resulting in the formation of the NPs; (2) entrapment of the NPs in the extracellular matrix (ECM) surrounding the cells, where they are colloidally stabilized; and (3) release of the NPs from the ECM to the culture medium. We also investigated the effect of the addition of the metals salts on cell viability and the impact on characteristics of the NPs formed. When silver was added to the cultures, cell viability was decreased and this resulted in a ~30nm red shift on the SPR band due to changes in the surrounding environment into which the NPs were released. The same observations (in SPR and cell viability) was made when gold was added to a final concentration of 2 × 10(-4)M, but not when the concentration was equal to 10(-4)M, where cell viability was high and the red shift was negligible.

  12. Papermill industrial waste as a sustainable source for high efficiency absorbent production.

    PubMed

    Likon, M; Cernec, F; Svegl, F; Saarela, J; Zimmie, T F

    2011-06-01

    Papermill sludge (PMS) is generated during the wastewater treatment process of paper production. Its handling and disposal techniques are of great concern for the environment. It can be landfilled as a waste, or it can be recycled and converted into useful products of high value. It has a very promising application as an absorbing agent for the cleaning of water surfaces polluted with hydrophobic substances (vegetable, synthetic and mineral oils, animal fats, fuels, organic chemicals and even coal dust). Here, we present the pretreatment procedure (hydrophobation, mechanical and thermal treatments) of PMS that produces a lightweight absorbent material (HAWSC - high efficiency absorbent for water surface cleaning), which floats on the water surface and binds hydrophobic pollutants with considerably higher efficiency than commercially available mineral and synthetic absorbents. After its application, it can be incinerated, due to its high caloric value, to produce energy. The incineration residues can then be formed into granules that can be used as an efficient absorbent for fluids spilled onto solid surfaces.

  13. Bioprospecting for hyper-lipid producing microalgal strains for sustainable biofuel production.

    PubMed

    Mutanda, T; Ramesh, D; Karthikeyan, S; Kumari, S; Anandraj, A; Bux, F

    2011-01-01

    Global petroleum reserves are shrinking at a fast pace, increasing the demand for alternate fuels. Microalgae have the ability to grow rapidly, and synthesize and accumulate large amounts (approximately 20-50% of dry weight) of neutral lipid stored in cytosolic lipid bodies. A successful and economically viable algae based biofuel industry mainly depends on the selection of appropriate algal strains. The main focus of bioprospecting for microalgae is to identify unique high lipid producing microalgae from different habitats. Indigenous species of microalgae with high lipid yields are especially valuable in the biofuel industry. Isolation, purification and identification of natural microalgal assemblages using conventional techniques is generally time consuming. However, the recent use of micromanipulation as a rapid isolating tool allows for a higher screening throughput. The appropriate media and growth conditions are also important for successful microalgal proliferation. Environmental parameters recorded at the sampling site are necessary to optimize in vitro growth. Identification of species generally requires a combination of morphological and genetic characterization. The selected microalgal strains are grown in upscale systems such as raceway ponds or photobireactors for biomass and lipid production. This paper reviews the recent methodologies adopted for site selection, sampling, strain selection and identification, optimization of cultural conditions for superior lipid yield for biofuel production. Energy generation routes of microalgal lipids and biomass are discussed in detail.

  14. Potential Health Impact of Environmentally Released Micro- and Nanoplastics in the Human Food Production Chain: Experiences from Nanotoxicology.

    PubMed

    Bouwmeester, Hans; Hollman, Peter C H; Peters, Ruud J B

    2015-08-01

    High concentrations of plastic debris have been observed in the oceans. Much of the recent concern has focused on microplastics in the marine environment. Recent studies of the size distribution of the plastic debris suggested that continued fragmenting of microplastics into nanosized particles may occur. In this review we assess the current literature on the occurrence of environmentally released micro- and nanoplastics in the human food production chain and their potential health impact. The currently used analytical techniques introduce a great bias in the knowledge, since they are only able to detect plastic particles well above the nanorange. We discuss the potential use of the very sensitive analytical techniques that have been developed for the detection and quantification of engineered nanoparticles. We recognize three possible toxic effects of plastic particles: first due to the plastic particles themselves, second to the release of persistent organic pollutant adsorbed to the plastics, and third to the leaching of additives of the plastics. The limited data on microplastics in foods do not predict adverse effect of these pollutants or additives. Potential toxic effects of microplastic particles will be confined to the gut. The potential human toxicity of nanoplastics is poorly studied. Based on our experiences in nanotoxicology we prioritized future research questions.

  15. The Role of Symbiotic Nitrogen Fixation in Sustainable Production of Biofuels

    PubMed Central

    Biswas, Bandana; Gresshoff, Peter M.

    2014-01-01

    With the ever-increasing population of the world (expected to reach 9.6 billion by 2050), and altered life style, comes an increased demand for food, fuel and fiber. However, scarcity of land, water and energy accompanied by climate change means that to produce enough to meet the demands is getting increasingly challenging. Today we must use every avenue from science and technology available to address these challenges. The natural process of symbiotic nitrogen fixation, whereby plants such as legumes fix atmospheric nitrogen gas to ammonia, usable by plants can have a substantial impact as it is found in nature, has low environmental and economic costs and is broadly established. Here we look at the importance of symbiotic nitrogen fixation in the production of biofuel feedstocks; how this process can address major challenges, how improving nitrogen fixation is essential, and what we can do about it. PMID:24786096

  16. Climatic trends of the equatorial undercurrent: A backup mechanism for sustaining the equatorial Pacific production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruggio, Raffaele; Vichi, Marcello; Paparella, Francesco; Masina, Simona

    2013-07-01

    The Equatorial Undercurrent (EUC) is the major source of iron to the equatorial Pacific and it is sensitive to climatic changes as other components of the tropical Pacific. This work proposes a methodology based on a Lagrangian approach aimed at understanding the changes in the transport of iron rich waters to the EUC in a future climate change scenario, using climate model data from an Earth system model. A selected set of regions from the northern and southern extra-equatorial Pacific has been chosen. These regions are characterized by the presence of iron sources from continental shelf processes like the Papua New Guinea region and atmospheric deposition like the northern subtropical gyre. The trajectories that reach the EUC during the 20th and the 21st century departing from these areas have been analyzed using a set of statistics designed to determine variations in the amount of transport and in the travel times of the water masses. The transport of waters to the EUC from the north Pacific subtropical gyre and from the Bismarck Sea is projected to increase during the 21st century. The increase is particularly significant for water masses from the northern subtropical gyre, with travel times lower than 10 years in the second half of the 21st century. This increased interaction between the extra-tropics and the EUC may bring additional iron-rich waters in the high-nutrient low-chlorophyll region of the equatorial Pacific compatibly with the significant increase of the simulated net primary production found in the biogeochemical model, thus partly offsetting the anticipated decrease of production implied by the surface warming.

  17. Technology targeting for sustainable intensification of crop production in the Delta region of Bangladesh

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schulthess, U.; Krupnik, T. J.; Ahmed, Z. U.; McDonald, A. J.

    2015-04-01

    Remote sensing data are nowadays being acquired within short intervals and made available at a low cost or for free. This opens up opportunities for new remote sensing applications, such as the characterization of entire regions to identify most suitable areas for technology targeting. Increasing population growth and changing dietary habits in South Asia call for higher cereal production to ensure future food security. In the Delta area of Bangladesh, surface water is considered to be available in quantities large enough to support intensification by adding an irrigated dry season crop. Fuel-efficient, low lift axial flow pumps have shown to be suitable to carry water to fields that are within a buffer of four hundred meters of the rivers. However, information on how and where to target surface water irrigation efforts is currently lacking. We describe the opportunities and constraints encountered in developing a procedure to identify cropland for which axial flow pumps could be successfully deployed upon in a 43'000 km2 area. First, we isolated cropland and waterways using Landsat 5 and 7 scenes using image segmentation followed by classification with the random forest algorithm. Based on Landsat 7 and 8 scenes, we extracted maximum dry season enhanced vegetation index (EVI) values, which we classified into fallow, low-, and high-intensity cropland for the last three years. Last, we investigated the potential for surface water irrigation on fallow and low-intensity land by applying a cropping risk matrix to address the twin threats of soil and water salinity. Our analysis indicates that there are at least 20,000 ha of fallow land under the low-risk category, while more than 100,000 ha of low-intensity cropland can be brought into intensified production. This information will aid in technology targeting for the efficient deployment of surface water irrigation as a tool for intensification.

  18. Participatory approach: from problem identification to setting strategies for increased productivity and sustainability in small scale irrigated agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Habtu, Solomon; Ludi, Eva; Jamin, Jean Yves; Oates, Naomi; Fissahaye Yohannes, Degol

    2014-05-01

    Practicing various innovations pertinent to irrigated farming at local field scale is instrumental to increase productivity and yield for small holder farmers in Africa. However the translation of innovations from local scale to the scale of a jointly operated irrigation scheme is far from trivial. It requires insight on the drivers for adoption of local innovations within the wider farmer communities. Participatory methods are expected to improve not only the acceptance of locally developed innovations within the wider farmer communities, but to allow also an estimation to which extend changes will occur within the entire irrigation scheme. On such a base, more realistic scenarios of future water productivity within an irrigation scheme, which is operated by small holder farmers, can be estimated. Initial participatory problem and innovation appraisal was conducted in Gumselassa small scale irrigation scheme, Ethiopia, from Feb 27 to March 3, 2012 as part of the EAU4FOOD project funded by EC. The objective was to identify and appraise problems which hinder sustainable water management to enhance production and productivity and to identify future research strategies. Workshops were conducted both at local (Community of Practices) and regional (Learning Practice Alliance) level. At local levels, intensive collaboration with farmers using participatory methods produced problem trees and a "Photo Safari" documented a range of problems that negatively impact on productive irrigated farming. A range of participatory methods were also used to identify local innovations. At regional level a Learning Platform was established that includes a wide range of stakeholders (technical experts from various government ministries, policy makers, farmers, extension agents, researchers). This stakeholder group did a range of exercise as well to identify major problems related to irrigated smallholder farming and already identified innovations. Both groups identified similar problems

  19. Arsenic-induced straighthead: an impending threat to sustainable rice production in South and South-East Asia!

    PubMed

    Rahman, M Azizur; Rahman, M Mamunur; Hasegawa, Hiroshi

    2012-03-01

    Straighthead is a physiological disorder of rice (Oryza sativa L.) that results in sterile florets with distorted lemma and palea, and the panicles or heads may not form at all in extreme cases. Heads remain upright at maturity, hence the name 'straighthead'. The diseased panicles may not emerge from the flag leaf sheath when the disease is severe. Straighthead disease in rice results in poorly developed panicles and significant yield loss. Although other soil physicochemical factors involved, arsenic contamination in soil has also been reported to be closely associated with straighthead of rice. Monosodium methanearsonate has been a popular herbicide in cotton production in the USA, which has shown to cause injuries in rice that are similar to straighthead. Since toxicity of inorganic arsenic (iAs) is higher than other forms of arsenic, it may produce a more severe straighthead disorder in rice. The use of iAs-rich groundwater for irrigation, and the increase of iAs concentrations in agricultural soil in arsenic epidemic South and South-East Asia may cause a high incidence of straighthead in rice, resulting in a threat to sustainable rice production in this region. PMID:22139332

  20. Seed coating with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi as an ecotechnologicalapproach for sustainable agricultural production of common wheat (Triticum aestivum L.).

    PubMed

    Oliveira, Rui S; Rocha, Inês; Ma, Ying; Vosátka, Miroslav; Freitas, Helena

    2016-01-01

    The exploitation of arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi has become of great interest in agriculture due to their potential roles in reducing the need for agrochemicals, while improving plant growth and nutrition. Nevertheless, the application of AM fungi by dispersing inocula in granular form to open agricultural fields is not feasible because nontargeted spreading of inocula over large surface areas results in high cost per plant. Seed coating has the potential to significantly reduce the amount of inoculum needed, resulting in cost reduction and increased efficiency. The aim of this study was to assess whether seed coating with AM fungal inoculum is a feasible delivery system for production of common wheat (Triticum aestivum L.). Wheat seeds were coated with inoculum of Rhizophagus irregularis BEG140 and grown under different fertilization conditions: (1) none, (2) partial, or (3) complete. Data indicated that mycorrhizal inoculation via seed coating significantly increased the dry weight of shoot and seed spikes of wheat associated with reduced fertilization. Assessment of nutritional status of wheat showed that plants inoculated with R. irregularis via seed coating displayed enhanced stem concentrations of potassium (K), sulfur (S), and zinc (Zn). There were no significant differences in root colonization between plants conventionally inoculated with R. irregularis in soil and those inoculated via seed coating. Seed coating with AM fungi may be as effective as conventional soil inoculation and may contribute to reduce the utilization of chemical fertilizers. The application of AM via seed coating is proposed as an ecotechnological approach for sustainable agricultural wheat production. PMID:27077274

  1. Arsenic-induced straighthead: an impending threat to sustainable rice production in South and South-East Asia!

    PubMed

    Rahman, M Azizur; Rahman, M Mamunur; Hasegawa, Hiroshi

    2012-03-01

    Straighthead is a physiological disorder of rice (Oryza sativa L.) that results in sterile florets with distorted lemma and palea, and the panicles or heads may not form at all in extreme cases. Heads remain upright at maturity, hence the name 'straighthead'. The diseased panicles may not emerge from the flag leaf sheath when the disease is severe. Straighthead disease in rice results in poorly developed panicles and significant yield loss. Although other soil physicochemical factors involved, arsenic contamination in soil has also been reported to be closely associated with straighthead of rice. Monosodium methanearsonate has been a popular herbicide in cotton production in the USA, which has shown to cause injuries in rice that are similar to straighthead. Since toxicity of inorganic arsenic (iAs) is higher than other forms of arsenic, it may produce a more severe straighthead disorder in rice. The use of iAs-rich groundwater for irrigation, and the increase of iAs concentrations in agricultural soil in arsenic epidemic South and South-East Asia may cause a high incidence of straighthead in rice, resulting in a threat to sustainable rice production in this region.

  2. Seed coating with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi as an ecotechnologicalapproach for sustainable agricultural production of common wheat (Triticum aestivum L.).

    PubMed

    Oliveira, Rui S; Rocha, Inês; Ma, Ying; Vosátka, Miroslav; Freitas, Helena

    2016-01-01

    The exploitation of arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi has become of great interest in agriculture due to their potential roles in reducing the need for agrochemicals, while improving plant growth and nutrition. Nevertheless, the application of AM fungi by dispersing inocula in granular form to open agricultural fields is not feasible because nontargeted spreading of inocula over large surface areas results in high cost per plant. Seed coating has the potential to significantly reduce the amount of inoculum needed, resulting in cost reduction and increased efficiency. The aim of this study was to assess whether seed coating with AM fungal inoculum is a feasible delivery system for production of common wheat (Triticum aestivum L.). Wheat seeds were coated with inoculum of Rhizophagus irregularis BEG140 and grown under different fertilization conditions: (1) none, (2) partial, or (3) complete. Data indicated that mycorrhizal inoculation via seed coating significantly increased the dry weight of shoot and seed spikes of wheat associated with reduced fertilization. Assessment of nutritional status of wheat showed that plants inoculated with R. irregularis via seed coating displayed enhanced stem concentrations of potassium (K), sulfur (S), and zinc (Zn). There were no significant differences in root colonization between plants conventionally inoculated with R. irregularis in soil and those inoculated via seed coating. Seed coating with AM fungi may be as effective as conventional soil inoculation and may contribute to reduce the utilization of chemical fertilizers. The application of AM via seed coating is proposed as an ecotechnological approach for sustainable agricultural wheat production.

  3. Biochemical conversions of lignocellulosic biomass for sustainable fuel-ethanol production in the upper Midwest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brodeur-Campbell, Michael J.

    Biofuels are an increasingly important component of worldwide energy supply. This research aims to understand the pathways and impacts of biofuels production, and to improve these processes to make them more efficient. In Chapter 2, a life cycle assessment (LCA) is presented for cellulosic ethanol production from five potential feedstocks of regional importance to the upper Midwest — hybrid poplar, hybrid willow, switchgrass, diverse prairie grasses, and logging residues — according to the requirements of Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). Direct land use change emissions are included for the conversion of abandoned agricultural land to feedstock production, and computer models of the conversion process are used in order to determine the effect of varying biomass composition on overall life cycle impacts. All scenarios analyzed here result in greater than 60% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions relative to petroleum gasoline. Land use change effects were found to contribute significantly to the overall emissions for the first 20 years after plantation establishment. Chapter 3 is an investigation of the effects of biomass mixtures on overall sugar recovery from the combined processes of dilute acid pretreatment and enzymatic hydrolysis. Biomass mixtures studied were aspen, a hardwood species well suited to biochemical processing; balsam, a high-lignin softwood species, and switchgrass, an herbaceous energy crop with high ash content. A matrix of three different dilute acid pretreatment severities and three different enzyme loading levels was used to characterize interactions between pretreatment and enzymatic hydrolysis. Maximum glucose yield for any species was 70% of theoretical for switchgrass, and maximum xylose yield was 99.7% of theoretical for aspen. Supplemental β-glucosidase increased glucose yield from enzymatic hydrolysis by an average of 15%, and total sugar recoveries for mixtures could be predicted to within 4% by linear interpolation of the pure

  4. Do You See What I See? Examining the Epistemic Barriers to Sustainable Agriculture

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carolan, Michael S.

    2006-01-01

    This paper examines the epistemic barriers to sustainable agriculture, which are those aspects of food production that are not readily revealed by direct perception: such as decreases in rates of soil and nutrient loss, increases in levels of beneficial soil micro-organisms, and reductions in the amount of chemicals leaching into the water table.…

  5. Regeneration of Aqueous Periodate Solutions by Ozone Treatment: A Sustainable Approach for Dialdehyde Cellulose Production.

    PubMed

    Koprivica, Slavica; Siller, Martin; Hosoya, Takashi; Roggenstein, Walter; Rosenau, Thomas; Potthast, Antje

    2016-04-21

    A method for easy and fast regeneration of aqueous periodate solutions from dialdehyde cellulose (DAC) production by ozone treatment is presented, along with a direct and reliable simultaneous quantification of iodate and periodate by reversed-phase HPLC. The influence of iodate and ozone concentration, solution pH, and reaction time on the regeneration efficiency was studied, as well as the reaction kinetics. Regeneration of spent periodate solutions by ozone was successfully performed in alkaline medium, which favors the formation of free (.) OH radicals, as supported by the addition of radical scavengers and quantum mechanical calculations. At pH 13 and an ozone concentration of approximately 150 mg L(-1) , periodate was completely regenerated from a 100 mm solution of iodate within 1 h at room temperature. A cyclic process of cellulose oxidation and subsequent regeneration of spent periodate with 90 % efficiency has been developed. So far, commercial applications of DAC have been hampered by difficulties in reusing the costly periodate. This work overcomes this hurdle and presents a highly efficient, clean, and low-cost protocol for the preparation of DAC with integrated periodate recycling, with the possibility of scaling the process up.

  6. Microalgal biofactories: a promising approach towards sustainable omega-3 fatty acid production

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Omega-3 fatty acids eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) provide significant health benefits and this has led to an increased consumption as dietary supplements. Omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA are found in animals, transgenic plants, fungi and many microorganisms but are typically extracted from fatty fish, putting additional pressures on global fish stocks. As primary producers, many marine microalgae are rich in EPA (C20:5) and DHA (C22:6) and present a promising source of omega-3 fatty acids. Several heterotrophic microalgae have been used as biofactories for omega-3 fatty acids commercially, but a strong interest in autotrophic microalgae has emerged in recent years as microalgae are being developed as biofuel crops. This paper provides an overview of microalgal biotechnology and production platforms for the development of omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA. It refers to implications in current biotechnological uses of microalgae as aquaculture feed and future biofuel crops and explores potential applications of metabolic engineering and selective breeding to accumulate large amounts of omega-3 fatty acids in autotrophic microalgae. PMID:22830315

  7. Nitrogen uptake, assimilation and remobilization in plants: challenges for sustainable and productive agriculture

    PubMed Central

    Masclaux-Daubresse, Céline; Daniel-Vedele, Françoise; Dechorgnat, Julie; Chardon, Fabien; Gaufichon, Laure; Suzuki, Akira

    2010-01-01

    Background Productive agriculture needs a large amount of expensive nitrogenous fertilizers. Improving nitrogen use efficiency (NUE) of crop plants is thus of key importance. NUE definitions differ depending on whether plants are cultivated to produce biomass or grain yields. However, for most plant species, NUE mainly depends on how plants extract inorganic nitrogen from the soil, assimilate nitrate and ammonium, and recycle organic nitrogen. Efforts have been made to study the genetic basis as well as the biochemical and enzymatic mechanisms involved in nitrogen uptake, assimilation, and remobilization in crops and model plants. The detection of the limiting factors that could be manipulated to increase NUE is the major goal of such research. Scope An overall examination of the physiological, metabolic, and genetic aspects of nitrogen uptake, assimilation and remobilization is presented in this review. The enzymes and regulatory processes manipulated to improve NUE components are presented. Results obtained from natural variation and quantitative trait loci studies are also discussed. Conclusions This review presents the complexity of NUE and supports the idea that the integration of the numerous data coming from transcriptome studies, functional genomics, quantitative genetics, ecophysiology and soil science into explanatory models of whole-plant behaviour will be promising. PMID:20299346

  8. Efficacy of mosquito netting for sustainable small holders' cabbage production in Africa.

    PubMed

    Martin, T; Assogba-Komlan, F; Houndete, T; Hougard, J M; Chandre, F

    2006-04-01

    The efficacy of a mosquito netting to protect cabbages, Brassica oleracea L., against pests was investigated in field trials in Benin, West Africa. A polyester net covered the plants at night by using a wood armature. The net was removed during the day to prevent overheating and excessive shade, both problems of insect-proof screens used under tropical conditions. The number of all lepidopteran larvae with netting protection and foliar insecticide sprays was significantly lower than the unprotected control. The number of diamondback moth, Plutella xylostella (L.), was significantly lower with netting protection compared with foliar insecticide sprays and control. Netting treated with deltamethrin gave total protection of young plants against the aphid Lipaphis erysimi (Kaltenbach). At harvest, the number of marketable cabbages protected with untreated netting was significantly higher compared with the production with foliar insecticide sprays. The protection of cabbages with netting can be an economically viable method. Considering the price of cabbages on local markets (US dollars 1/unit), the net returns per 100 m2 were US dollars 247 by using netting, US dollars 149 by using insecticides, and US dollars 117 for controls. The net returns for using netting are based on replacing the netting each crop cycle. But netting can be reused several times, depending upon conditions, increasing the profit margin. The netting protection may be an alternative to the growing unsustainable practices of vegetable cropping in peri-urban areas of tropical countries.

  9. Using TRACI for Sustainability Metrics

    EPA Science Inventory

    TRACI, the Tool for the Reduction and Assessment of Chemical and other environmental Impacts, has been developed for sustainability metrics, life cycle impact assessment, and product and process design impact assessment for developing increasingly sustainable products, processes,...

  10. Beyond the use of modifiers in selective alkyne hydrogenation: silver and gold nanocatalysts in flow mode for sustainable alkene production.

    PubMed

    Vilé, Gianvito; Pérez-Ramírez, Javier

    2014-11-21

    We report on the excellent stereo and chemoselectivity of nanosized silver and gold catalysts in the three-phase hydrogenation of acetylenic compounds under flow chemistry conditions. The materials featuring metal nanoparticles in the range of 2-21 nm were prepared by spray deposition or incipient wetness impregnation of silver nitrate and sol immobilisation of gold chloride on different carriers (Al2O3, SiO2, TiO2, and carbon), followed by activation in various atmospheres. The samples were characterised by ICP-OES, N2 sorption, XPS, HAADF-STEM, and HRTEM, and evaluated in a continuous-flow flooded-bed micro-reactor. Both metals display optimal activities for particles below 5 nm, enabling stable operation at T = 373 K and P = 10 bar. While the performance of the silver catalysts is less influenced by the support, the gold nanoparticles exhibit significant activity only when deposited on TiO2, likely due to the strong metal-support interaction. Hydrogenations of functionalised alkynes reveal that silver and gold match, and in some cases exceed, the selectivity of benchmark palladium-based catalysts. Furthermore, in contrast to Pd, the Ag and Au samples require no modifiers, which brings fundamental and practical simplifications for their understanding and large scale manufacture. Therefore, these materials could be advantageously used for the continuous production of olefinic intermediates in the fine chemical and pharmaceutical industries. PMID:25132414

  11. Sustainable Use Of Macro-Algae For Biogas Production In Latvian Conditions: A Preliminary Study Through An Integrated Mca And Lca Approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pastare, Laura; Romagnoli, Francesco; Lauka, Dace; Dzene, Ilze; Kuznecova, Tatjana

    2014-12-01

    The study focuses on sustainability evaluation of an algae-based energy system in Latvia with a holistic and integrated approach of multi-criteria analysis combined with life cycle assessment (including a practical side - biogas yield experiments of locally available algae). The study shows potential for sustainable use of algae in Latvian conditions and thus that algal biomass can be utilized for the production of biogas. The most sustainable and feasible scenario of using algae for biogas energy production foresees the collection of algae biomass from natural water bodies. Important beneficial effects through the use of algae are related to avoiding global warming potential (GWP) and eutrophication impacts. Biogas batch experiments carried out with the local macrophyte C.demersum have shown a methane yield of 554 l CH4/kg VS.

  12. Identification of unwanted photoproducts of cosmetic preservatives in personal care products under ultraviolet-light using solid-phase microextraction and micro-matrix solid-phase dispersion.

    PubMed

    Alvarez-Rivera, Gerardo; Llompart, Maria; Garcia-Jares, Carmen; Lores, Marta

    2015-04-17

    The photochemical transformation of widely used cosmetic preservatives including benzoates, parabens, BHA, BHT and triclosan has been investigated in this work applying an innovative double-approach strategy: identification of transformation products in aqueous photodegradation experiments (UV-light, 254nm), followed by targeted screening analysis of such photoproducts in UV-irradiated cosmetic samples. Solid-phase microextraction (SPME) was applied, using different fiber coatings, in order to widen the range of detectable photoproducts in water, whereas UV-irradiated personal care products (PCPs) containing the target preservatives were extracted by micro-matrix solid-phase dispersion (micro-MSPD). Both SPME and micro-MSPD-based methodologies were successfully optimized and validated. Degradation kinetics of parent species, and photoformation of their transformation by-products were monitored by gas chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry (GC-MS). Thirty nine photoproducts were detected in aqueous photodegradation experiments, being tentatively identified based on their mass spectra. Transformation pathways between structurally related by-products, consistent with their kinetic behavior were postulated. The photoformation of unexpected photoproducts such as 2- and 4-hydroxybenzophenones, and 2,8-dichlorodibenzo-p-dioxin in PCPs are reported in this work for the first time.

  13. RENEWABLE ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY USING BIOMASS FROM DAIRY AND BEEF ANIMAL PRODUCTION

    SciTech Connect

    Sweeten, John; Annamalai, Kalyan; Auvermann, Brent; Mukhtar, Saqib; Capareda, Sergio C; Engler, Cady; Harman, Wyatte; Reddy, J N; DeOtte, Robert; Parker, David B; Stewart, B A

    2012-05-02

    The Texas Panhandle is regarded as the "Cattle Feeding Capital of the World", producing 42% of the fed beef cattle in the United States within a 200-mile radius of Amarillo generating more than 5 million tons of feedlot manure /year. Apart from feedlots, the Bosque River Region in Erath County, just north of Waco, Texas with about 110,000 dairy cattle in over 250 dairies, produces 1.8 million tons of manure biomass (excreted plus bedding) per year. While the feedlot manure has been used extensively for irrigated and dry land crop production, most dairies, as well as other concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFO's), the dairy farms utilize large lagoon areas to store wet animal biomass. Water runoff from these lagoons has been held responsible for the increased concentration of phosphorus and other contaminates in the Bosque River which drains into Lake Waco—the primary source of potable water for Waco's 108,500 people. The concentrated animal feeding operations may lead to land, water, and air pollution if waste handling systems and storage and treatment structures are not properly managed. Manure-based biomass (MBB) has the potential to be a source of green energy at large coal-fired power plants and on smaller-scale combustion systems at or near confined animal feeding operations. Although MBB particularly cattle biomass (CB) is a low quality fuel with an inferior heat value compared to coal and other fossil fuels, the concentration of it at large animal feeding operations can make it a viable source of fuel. The overall objective of this interdisciplinary proposal is to develop environmentally benign technologies to convert low-value inventories of dairy and beef cattle biomass into renewable energy. Current research expands the suite of technologies by which cattle biomass (CB: manure, and premature mortalities) could serve as a renewable alternative to fossil fuel. The work falls into two broad categories of research and development. Category 1

  14. RENEWABLE ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY USING BIOMASS FROM DAIRY AND BEEF ANIMAL PRODUCTION

    SciTech Connect

    John M. Sweeten, Kalyan Annamalai Brent Auvermann Saqib Mukhtar Sergio C. Capareda Cady Engler Wyatte Harman J.N. Reddy, Robert DeOtte David B. Parker Dr. B.A. Stewart

    2012-05-03

    The Texas Panhandle is regarded as the 'Cattle Feeding Capital of the World', producing 42% of the fed beef cattle in the United States within a 200-mile radius of Amarillo generating more than 5 million tons of feedlot manure/year. Apart from feedlots, the Bosque River Region in Erath County, just north of Waco, Texas with about 110,000 dairy cattle in over 250 dairies, produces 1.8 million tons of manure biomass (excreted plus bedding) per year. While the feedlot manure has been used extensively for irrigated and dry land crop production, most dairies, as well as other concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFO's), the dairy farms utilize large lagoon areas to store wet animal biomass. Water runoff from these lagoons has been held responsible for the increased concentration of phosphorus and other contaminates in the Bosque River which drains into Lake Waco - the primary source of potable water for Waco's 108,500 people. The concentrated animal feeding operations may lead to land, water, and air pollution if waste handling systems and storage and treatment structures are not properly managed. Manure-based biomass (MBB) has the potential to be a source of green energy at large coal-fired power plants and on smaller-scale combustion systems at or near confined animal feeding operations. Although MBB particularly cattle biomass (CB) is a low quality fuel with an inferior heat value compared to coal and other fossil fuels, the concentration of it at large animal feeding operations can make it a viable source of fuel. The overall objective of this interdisciplinary proposal is to develop environmentally benign technologies to convert low-value inventories of dairy and beef cattle biomass into renewable energy. Current research expands the suite of technologies by which cattle biomass (CB: manure, and premature mortalities) could serve as a renewable alternative to fossil fuel. The work falls into two broad categories of research and development. Category 1

  15. RENEWABLE ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY USING BIOMASS FROM DAIRY AND BEEF ANIMAL PRODUCTION

    SciTech Connect

    Sweeten, John M; Annamalai, Kalyan; Auvermann, Brent; Mukhtar, Saqib; Capareda, Sergio C.; Engler, Cady; Harman, Wyatte; Reddy, J N; DeOtte, Robert; Parker, David B.; Stewart, B. A.

    2012-05-03

    The Texas Panhandle is regarded as the "Cattle Feeding Capital of the World", producing 42% of the fed beef cattle in the United States within a 200-mile radius of Amarillo generating more than 5 million tons of feedlot manure/year. Apart from feedlots, the Bosque River Region in Erath County, just north of Waco, Texas with about 110,000 dairy cattle in over 250 dairies, produces 1.8 million tons of manure biomass (excreted plus bedding) per year. While the feedlot manure has been used extensively for irrigated and dry land crop production, most dairies, as well as other concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFO's), the dairy farms utilize large lagoon areas to store wet animal biomass. Water runoff from these lagoons has been held responsible for the increased concentration of phosphorus and other contaminates in the Bosque River which drains into Lake Waco -- the primary source of potable water for Waco's 108,500 people. The concentrated animal feeding operations may lead to land, water, and air pollution if waste handling systems and storage and treatment structures are not properly managed. Manure-based biomass (MBB) has the potential to be a source of green energy at large coal-fired power plants and on smaller-scale combustion systems at or near confined animal feeding operations. Although MBB particularly cattle biomass (CB) is a low quality fuel with an inferior heat value compared to coal and other fossil fuels, the concentration of it at large animal feeding operations can make it a viable source of fuel. The overall objective of this interdisciplinary proposal is to develop environmentally benign technologies to convert low-value inventories of dairy and beef cattle biomass into renewable energy. Current research expands the suite of technologies by which cattle biomass (CB: manure, and premature mortalities) could serve as a renewable alternative to fossil fuel. The work falls into two broad categories of research and development. Category 1

  16. Sustainable bioethanol production combining biorefinery principles using combined raw materials from wheat undersown with clover-grass.

    PubMed

    Thomsen, Mette Hedegaard; Hauggaard-Nielsen, Henrik; Haugaard-Nielsen, Henrik

    2008-05-01

    To obtain the best possible net energy balance of the bioethanol production the biomass raw materials used need to be produced with limited use of non-renewable fossil fuels. Intercropping strategies are known to maximize growth and productivity by including more than one species in the crop stand, very often with legumes as one of the components. In the present study clover-grass is undersown in a traditional wheat crop. Thereby, it is possible to increase input of symbiotic fixation of atmospheric nitrogen into the cropping systems and reduce the need for fertilizer applications. Furthermore, when using such wheat and clover-grass mixtures as raw material, addition of urea and other fermentation nutrients produced from fossil fuels can be reduced in the whole ethanol manufacturing chain. Using second generation ethanol technology mixtures of relative proportions of wheat straw and clover-grass (15:85, 50:50, and 85:15) were pretreated by wet oxidation. The results showed that supplementing wheat straw with clover-grass had a positive effect on the ethanol yield in simultaneous saccharification and fermentation experiments, and the effect was more pronounced in inhibitory substrates. The highest ethanol yield (80% of theoretical) was obtained in the experiment with high fraction (85%) of clover-grass. In order to improve the sugar recovery of clover-grass, it should be separated into a green juice (containing free sugars, fructan, amino acids, vitamins and soluble minerals) for direct fermentation and a fibre pulp for pretreatment together with wheat straw. Based on the obtained results a decentralized biorefinery concept for production of biofuel is suggested emphasizing sustainability, localness, and recycling principles. PMID:18338188

  17. Sustainable bioethanol production combining biorefinery principles using combined raw materials from wheat undersown with clover-grass.

    PubMed

    Thomsen, Mette Hedegaard; Hauggaard-Nielsen, Henrik; Haugaard-Nielsen, Henrik

    2008-05-01

    To obtain the best possible net energy balance of the bioethanol production the biomass raw materials used need to be produced with limited use of non-renewable fossil fuels. Intercropping strategies are known to maximize growth and productivity by including more than one species in the crop stand, very often with legumes as one of the components. In the present study clover-grass is undersown in a traditional wheat crop. Thereby, it is possible to increase input of symbiotic fixation of atmospheric nitrogen into the cropping systems and reduce the need for fertilizer applications. Furthermore, when using such wheat and clover-grass mixtures as raw material, addition of urea and other fermentation nutrients produced from fossil fuels can be reduced in the whole ethanol manufacturing chain. Using second generation ethanol technology mixtures of relative proportions of wheat straw and clover-grass (15:85, 50:50, and 85:15) were pretreated by wet oxidation. The results showed that supplementing wheat straw with clover-grass had a positive effect on the ethanol yield in simultaneous saccharification and fermentation experiments, and the effect was more pronounced in inhibitory substrates. The highest ethanol yield (80% of theoretical) was obtained in the experiment with high fraction (85%) of clover-grass. In order to improve the sugar recovery of clover-grass, it should be separated into a green juice (containing free sugars, fructan, amino acids, vitamins and soluble minerals) for direct fermentation and a fibre pulp for pretreatment together with wheat straw. Based on the obtained results a decentralized biorefinery concept for production of biofuel is suggested emphasizing sustainability, localness, and recycling principles.

  18. RENEWABLE ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY USING BIOMASS FROM DAIRY AND BEEF ANIMAL PRODUCTION

    SciTech Connect

    Kalyan Annamalai, John M. Sweeten, Brent W. Auvermann, Saqib Mukhtar, Sergio Caperada Cady R. Engler, Wyatte Harman Reddy JN Robert Deotte

    2012-05-03

    The Texas Panhandle is regarded as the 'Cattle Feeding Capital of the World', producing 42% of the fed beef cattle in the United States within a 200-mile radius of Amarillo generating more than 5 million tons of feedlot manure/year. Apart from feedlots, the Bosque River Region in Erath County, just north of Waco, Texas with about 110,000 dairy cattle in over 250 dairies, produces 1.8 million tons of manure biomass (excreted plus bedding) per year. While the feedlot manure has been used extensively for irrigated and dry land crop production, most dairies, as well as other concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFO's), the dairy farms utilize large lagoon areas to store wet animal biomass. Water runoff from these lagoons has been held responsible for the increased concentration of phosphorus and other contaminates in the Bosque River which drains into Lake Waco - the primary source of potable water for Waco's 108,500 people. The concentrated animal feeding operations may lead to land, water, and air pollution if waste handling systems and storage and treatment structures are not properly managed. Manure-based biomass (MBB) has the potential to be a source of green energy at large coal-fired power plants and on smaller-scale combustion systems at or near confined animal feeding operations. Although MBB particularly cattle biomass (CB) is a low quality fuel with an inferior heat value compared to coal and other fossil fuels, the concentration of it at large animal feeding operations can make it a viable source of fuel. The overall objective of this interdisciplinary proposal is to develop environmentally benign technologies to convert low-value inventories of dairy and beef cattle biomass into renewable energy. Current research expands the suite of technologies by which cattle biomass (CB: manure, and premature mortalities) could serve as a renewable alternative to fossil fuel. The work falls into two broad categories of research and development. Category 1

  19. Health and sustainability.

    PubMed

    Kjӕrgård, Bente; Land, Birgit; Bransholm Pedersen, Kirsten

    2014-09-01

    In the present article, we explore how sustainable development strategies and health promotion strategies can be bridged. The concept of the 'duality of structure' is taken as our starting point for understanding the linkages between health promotion and sustainable development, and for uncovering the structural properties or conditions which either enable or constrain sustainable public health initiatives. We argue that strategies towards health promotion are not sufficiently integrated with strategies for sustainable development, and thus political strategies aimed at solving health problems or sustainability problems may cause new, undesired and unforeseen environmental or health problems. First, we explore how the relation between health and sustainability is articulated in international policy documents. Next, we develop a model for understanding the relation between health promotion and sustainability. Third, we use examples from agriculture and food production to illustrate that health and sustainability are mutually enabling and constraining. We conclude that while the renewed focus on food security and food inequalities has brought the health and sustainability dimensions of the food system onto the political agenda, the conceptualization of duality between health and sustainability could be a new platform for a critical and theoretical stance towards the market-oriented food system strategy. Thinking along the lines of duality means that the integration of health promotion strategies and sustainable development strategies cannot be based on an approach to integration in which either health or sustainability is given precedence over the other. From a duality perspective, integration means conceiving sustainability from a health perspective and health from a sustainability perspective.

  20. Development of synthetic chromosomes and improved microbial strains to utilize cellulosic feedstocks and express valuable coproducts for sustainable production of biofuels from corn

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A sustainable biorefinery must convert a broad range of renewable feedstocks into a variety of product streams, including fuels, power, and value-added bioproducts. To accomplish this, microbial-based technologies that enable new commercially viable coproducts from corn-to-ethanol biofuel fermentati...

  1. An insect-inspired flapping wing micro air vehicle with double wing clap-fling effects and capability of sustained hovering

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nguyen, Quoc-Viet; Chan, Woei Leong; Debiasi, Marco

    2015-03-01

    We present our recent flying insect-inspired Flapping-Wing Micro Air Vehicle (FW-MAV) capable of hovering flight which we have recently achieved. The FW-MAV has wing span of 22 cm (wing tip-to-wing tip), weighs about 16.6 grams with onboard integration of radio control system including a radio receiver, an electronic speed control (ESC) for brushless motor, three servos for attitude flight controls of roll, pitch, and yaw, and a single cell lithium-polymer (LiPo) battery (3.7 V). The proposed gear box enables the FW-MAV to use one DC brushless motor to synchronously drive four wings and take advantage of the double clap-and-fling effects during one flapping cycle. Moreover, passive wing rotation is utilized to simplify the design, in addition to passive stabilizing surfaces for flight stability. Powered by a single cell LiPo battery (3.7 V), the FW-MAV flaps at 13.7 Hz and produces an average vertical force or thrust of about 28 grams, which is sufficient for take-off and hovering flight. Finally, free flight tests in terms of vertical take-off, hovering, and manual attitude control flight have been conducted to verify the performance of the FW-MAV.

  2. [Resource situation investigation about Rheum tanguticum and its sustainable utilization analysis in main production area of China].

    PubMed

    Li, Li; Liu, Kai; Wei, Sheng-Li; Cheng, Xiao-Li; Liu, Juan; Ren, Guang-Xi; Wang, Wen-Quan

    2014-04-01

    This study was conducted to investigate the wild and cultivated resource situation of Rheum tanguticum in main production area of China, estimate its reserves, and put forward the feasible approach for the sustainable utilization of R. tanguticum. On the basis of the literature data about R. tanguticum, conbined with interview, investigation and sampling investigation, the total reserve of resources is estimated using the route-quadrat method and the vegetation and soil-type map area method proposed by our research group. The results indicate that there is no obvious change between the present distribution ranges of the wild R. tanguticum and its historical records, but its population density has changed clearly. The reserve of the wild R. tanguticum has seriously declined in lots of place, even faced the exhaustion in some regions. According to the investigation, the resource reserve of the wild R. tanguticum is no more than 5 000 t, and the cultivated is about 1 607 t. The resource reserve of the wild R. tanguticum is nearly depleted, and this suggests that the wild R. tanguticum should be enrolled in the protection plant list, and the cultivated will become the main resource of Rhubarb in the future. So it is extremely neccessary to collect and protect the germplasm resource of R. tanguticum, establish the germplasm nursery and repository, and conduct breeding research on those bases.

  3. Sustainable production of acrylic acid: alkali-ion exchanged beta zeolite for gas-phase dehydration of lactic acid.

    PubMed

    Yan, Bo; Tao, Li-Zhi; Liang, Yu; Xu, Bo-Qing

    2014-06-01

    Gas-phase dehydration of lactic acid (LA) to acrylic acid (AA) was investigated over alkali-exchanged β zeolite (M(x)Na(1-x)β, M=Li(+), K(+), Rb(+), or Cs(+)) of different exchange degrees (x). The reaction was conducted under varying conditions to understand the catalyst selectivity for AA production and trends of byproduct formation. The nature and exchange degree of M(+) were found to be critical for the acid-base properties and catalytic performance of the exchanged zeolite. K(x)Na(1-x)β of x=0.94 appeared to be the best performing catalyst whereas Li(x)Na(1-x)β and Naβ were the poorest in terms of AA selectivity and yield. The AA yield as high as 61 mol % (selectivity: 64 mol %) could be obtained under optimized reaction conditions for up to 8 h over the best performing K0.94Na0.06β. The acid and base properties of the catalysts were probed, respectively by temperature-programmed desorption (TPD) of adsorbed NH3 and CO2, and were related to the electrostatic potentials of the alkali ions in the zeolite, which provided a basis for the discussion of the acid-base catalysis for sustainable AA formation from LA.

  4. High-pressure liquid chromatographic assay of theophylline in dog feces following oral administration of sustained-release products.

    PubMed

    Chow, A T; Meek, P D; Jusko, W J

    1993-09-01

    A solid-phase-extraction reversed-phase HPLC assay is described for the determination of theophylline embedded in dog feces as powder, sustained-release tablets, or capsules. The feces is extracted with 5% isopropyl alcohol in chloroform in the presence of beta-hydroxypropyl-theophylline as the internal standard. Separation and quantitation are achieved with a C18 analytical column. UV absorbance is monitored at 280 nm. Recovery of theophylline was > 50%. The assay is linear between 10 and 400 mg amounts of theophylline in 50 g of feces. Inter- and intraday coefficients of variation of the chromatographic assay were < 3%, and the extraction procedure was highly reproducible with coefficients of variation of < 10% at amounts of drug from 10 to 400 mg. By keeping the stool/solvent extraction ratio constant, the method is equally effective in extracting theophylline from different sizes of stool samples (50 versus 200 g of stool). The assay was applied to evaluate the theophylline content in feces following oral administration of the drug to dogs as tablet (Theo-Dur) and capsule (Slo-Bid) dosage forms. The resulting fecal recovery values of each product were inversely related to the corresponding bioavailability values obtained from the literature.

  5. Microbial conversion of pyrolytic products to biofuels: a novel and sustainable approach toward second-generation biofuels.

    PubMed

    Islam, Zia Ul; Zhisheng, Yu; Hassan, El Barbary; Dongdong, Chang; Hongxun, Zhang

    2015-12-01

    This review highlights the potential of the pyrolysis-based biofuels production, bio-ethanol in particular, and lipid in general as an alternative and sustainable solution for the rising environmental concerns and rapidly depleting natural fuel resources. Levoglucosan (1,6-anhydrous-β-D-glucopyranose) is the major anhydrosugar compound resulting from the degradation of cellulose during the fast pyrolysis process of biomass and thus the most attractive fermentation substrate in the bio-oil. The challenges for pyrolysis-based biorefineries are the inefficient detoxification strategies, and the lack of naturally available efficient and suitable fermentation organisms that could ferment the levoglucosan directly into bio-ethanol. In case of indirect fermentation, acid hydrolysis is used to convert levoglucosan into glucose and subsequently to ethanol and lipids via fermentation biocatalysts, however the presence of fermentation inhibitors poses a big hurdle to successful fermentation relative to pure glucose. Among the detoxification strategies studied so far, over-liming, extraction with solvents like (n-butanol, ethyl acetate), and activated carbon seem very promising, but still further research is required for the optimization of existing detoxification strategies as well as developing new ones. In order to make the pyrolysis-based biofuel production a more efficient as well as cost-effective process, direct fermentation of pyrolysis oil-associated fermentable sugars, especially levoglucosan is highlly desirable. This can be achieved either by expanding the search to identify naturally available direct levoglusoan utilizers or modify the existing fermentation biocatalysts (yeasts and bacteria) with direct levoglucosan pathway coupled with tolerance engineering could significantly improve the overall performance of these microorganisms.

  6. Microbial conversion of pyrolytic products to biofuels: a novel and sustainable approach toward second-generation biofuels.

    PubMed

    Islam, Zia Ul; Zhisheng, Yu; Hassan, El Barbary; Dongdong, Chang; Hongxun, Zhang

    2015-12-01

    This review highlights the potential of the pyrolysis-based biofuels production, bio-ethanol in particular, and lipid in general as an alternative and sustainable solution for the rising environmental concerns and rapidly depleting natural fuel resources. Levoglucosan (1,6-anhydrous-β-D-glucopyranose) is the major anhydrosugar compound resulting from the degradation of cellulose during the fast pyrolysis process of biomass and thus the most attractive fermentation substrate in the bio-oil. The challenges for pyrolysis-based biorefineries are the inefficient detoxification strategies, and the lack of naturally available efficient and suitable fermentation organisms that could ferment the levoglucosan directly into bio-ethanol. In case of indirect fermentation, acid hydrolysis is used to convert levoglucosan into glucose and subsequently to ethanol and lipids via fermentation biocatalysts, however the presence of fermentation inhibitors poses a big hurdle to successful fermentation relative to pure glucose. Among the detoxification strategies studied so far, over-liming, extraction with solvents like (n-butanol, ethyl acetate), and activated carbon seem very promising, but still further research is required for the optimization of existing detoxification strategies as well as developing new ones. In order to make the pyrolysis-based biofuel production a more efficient as well as cost-effective process, direct fermentation of pyrolysis oil-associated fermentable sugars, especially levoglucosan is highlly desirable. This can be achieved either by expanding the search to identify naturally available direct levoglusoan utilizers or modify the existing fermentation biocatalysts (yeasts and bacteria) with direct levoglucosan pathway coupled with tolerance engineering could significantly improve the overall performance of these microorganisms. PMID:26433384

  7. MicroRNA-500 sustains nuclear factor-κB activation and induces gastric cancer cell proliferation and resistance to apoptosis

    PubMed Central

    Yuan, Zhongyu; Liu, Junling; Sun, Jian; Lei, Fangyong; Wu, Shu; Li, Su; Zhang, Dongsheng

    2015-01-01

    Ubiquitin deconjugation of key signalling molecules by deubiquitinases (DUBs) such as cylindromatosis (CYLD), A20, and OTU deubiquitinase 7B (OTUD7B) has emerged as an important regulatory mechanism in the downregulation of NF-κB signalling and homeostasis. However, how these serial negative regulations are simultaneously disrupted to result in constitutive activation of NF-κB signalling in cancers remains puzzling. Here, we report that the miR-500 directly repressed the expression of CYLD, OTUD7B, and the A20 complex component Tax1-binding protein 1 (TAX1BP1), leading to ubiquitin conjugation of receptor-interacting protein 1 (RIP1) and sustained NF-ĸB activation. Furthermore, we found that miR-500 promoted gastric cancer cell proliferation, survival, and tumorigenicity. Importantly, miR-500 was upregulated in gastric cancer and was highly correlated with malignant progression and poor survival. Hence, we report the uncovering of a novel mechanism for constitutive NF-κB activation, indicating the potentially pivotal role of miR-500 in the progression of gastric cancer. PMID:25595906

  8. The microRNA-26a target E2F7 sustains cell proliferation and inhibits monocytic differentiation of acute myeloid leukemia cells.

    PubMed

    Salvatori, B; Iosue, I; Mangiavacchi, A; Loddo, G; Padula, F; Chiaretti, S; Peragine, N; Bozzoni, I; Fazi, F; Fatica, A

    2012-01-01

    Blocks in genetic programs required for terminal myeloid differentiation and aberrant proliferation characterize acute myeloid leukemia (AML) cells. 1,25-Dihydroxy-vitamin D3 (VitD3) arrests proliferation of AML cells and induces their differentiation into mature monocytes. In a previous study, we showed that miR-26a was induced upon VitD3-mediated monocytic differentiation. Here, we identify E2F7 as a novel target of miR-26a. We show that E2F7 significantly promotes cell cycle progression and inhibits monocytic differentiation of AML cells. We also demonstrate that E2F7 binds the cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor p21(CIP1/WAF1) (cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor 1A) promoter repressing its expression. Moreover, interfering with E2F7 expression results in inhibition of c-Myc (v-myc myelocytomatosis viral oncogene homolog) transcriptional activity. This leads to the downregulation of c-Myc transcriptional target miR-17-92 cluster, whose expression has a well-defined role in contributing to block monocytic differentiation and sustain AML cell proliferation. Finally, we show that the expression of E2F7 is upregulated in primary blasts from AML patients. Thus, these findings indicate that the newly identified miR-26a target E2F7 might have an important role in monocytic differentiation and leukemogenesis.

  9. Beyond the use of modifiers in selective alkyne hydrogenation: silver and gold nanocatalysts in flow mode for sustainable alkene production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vilé, Gianvito; Pérez-Ramírez, Javier

    2014-10-01

    We report on the excellent stereo and chemoselectivity of nanosized silver and gold catalysts in the three-phase hydrogenation of acetylenic compounds under flow chemistry conditions. The materials featuring metal nanoparticles in the range of 2-21 nm were prepared by spray deposition or incipient wetness impregnation of silver nitrate and sol immobilisation of gold chloride on different carriers (Al2O3, SiO2, TiO2, and carbon), followed by activation in various atmospheres. The samples were characterised by ICP-OES, N2 sorption, XPS, HAADF-STEM, and HRTEM, and evaluated in a continuous-flow flooded-bed micro-reactor. Both metals display optimal activities for particles below 5 nm, enabling stable operation at T = 373 K and P = 10 bar. While the performance of the silver catalysts is less influenced by the support, the gold nanoparticles exhibit significant activity only when deposited on TiO2, likely due to the strong metal-support interaction. Hydrogenations of functionalised alkynes reveal that silver and gold match, and in some cases exceed, the selectivity of benchmark palladium-based catalysts. Furthermore, in contrast to Pd, the Ag and Au samples require no modifiers, which brings fundamental and practical simplifications for their understanding and large scale manufacture. Therefore, these materials could be advantageously used for the continuous production of olefinic intermediates in the fine chemical and pharmaceutical industries.We report on the excellent stereo and chemoselectivity of nanosized silver and gold catalysts in the three-phase hydrogenation of acetylenic compounds under flow chemistry conditions. The materials featuring metal nanoparticles in the range of 2-21 nm were prepared by spray deposition or incipient wetness impregnation of silver nitrate and sol immobilisation of gold chloride on different carriers (Al2O3, SiO2, TiO2, and carbon), followed by activation in various atmospheres. The samples were characterised by ICP-OES, N2 sorption

  10. Sustainable Energy Crop Production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Biofuels currently supply a small portion of the world’s energy needs but this is increasing due to mandates intended to reduce use of fossil fuels and the associated environmental impacts. However, the potentials of plant based feedstocks to substitute for fossil fuels and mitigate environmental im...

  11. Catalysis for biomass and CO2 use through solar energy: opening new scenarios for a sustainable and low-carbon chemical production.

    PubMed

    Lanzafame, Paola; Centi, Gabriele; Perathoner, Siglinda

    2014-11-21

    The use of biomass, bio-waste and CO2 derived raw materials, the latter synthesized using H2 produced using renewable energy sources, opens new scenarios to develop a sustainable and low carbon chemical production, particularly in regions such as Europe lacking in other resources. This tutorial review discusses first this new scenario with the aim to point out, between the different possible options, those more relevant to enable this new future scenario for the chemical production, commenting in particular the different drivers (economic, technological and strategic, environmental and sustainability and socio-political) which guide the selection. The case of the use of non-fossil fuel based raw materials for the sustainable production of light olefins is discussed in more detail, but the production of other olefins and polyolefins, of drop-in intermediates and other platform molecules are also analysed. The final part discusses the role of catalysis in establishing this new scenario, summarizing the development of catalysts with respect to industrial targets, for (i) the production of light olefins by catalytic dehydration of ethanol and by CO2 conversion via FTO process, (ii) the catalytic synthesis of butadiene from ethanol, butanol and butanediols, and (iii) the catalytic synthesis of HMF and its conversion to 2,5-FDCA, adipic acid, caprolactam and 1,6-hexanediol. PMID:24577063

  12. Catalysis for biomass and CO2 use through solar energy: opening new scenarios for a sustainable and low-carbon chemical production.

    PubMed

    Lanzafame, Paola; Centi, Gabriele; Perathoner, Siglinda

    2014-11-21

    The use of biomass, bio-waste and CO2 derived raw materials, the latter synthesized using H2 produced using renewable energy sources, opens new scenarios to develop a sustainable and low carbon chemical production, particularly in regions such as Europe lacking in other resources. This tutorial review discusses first this new scenario with the aim to point out, between the different possible options, those more relevant to enable this new future scenario for the chemical production, commenting in particular the different drivers (economic, technological and strategic, environmental and sustainability and socio-political) which guide the selection. The case of the use of non-fossil fuel based raw materials for the sustainable production of light olefins is discussed in more detail, but the production of other olefins and polyolefins, of drop-in intermediates and other platform molecules are also analysed. The final part discusses the role of catalysis in establishing this new scenario, summarizing the development of catalysts with respect to industrial targets, for (i) the production of light olefins by catalytic dehydration of ethanol and by CO2 conversion via FTO process, (ii) the catalytic synthesis of butadiene from ethanol, butanol and butanediols, and (iii) the catalytic synthesis of HMF and its conversion to 2,5-FDCA, adipic acid, caprolactam and 1,6-hexanediol.

  13. Basic fibroblast growth factor promotes stem Leydig cell development and inhibits LH-stimulated androgen production by regulating microRNA expression.

    PubMed

    Liu, Hui; Yang, Yan; Zhang, Lei; Liang, Rui; Ge, Ren-Shan; Zhang, Yufei; Zhang, Qihao; Xiang, Qi; Huang, Yadong; Su, Zhijian

    2014-10-01

    Leydig cells are the primary source of testosterone in the testes, and their steroidogenic function is strictly controlled by the hypothalamus-pituitary-gonad axis. Emerging evidence has indicated that fibroblast growth factors play a role in regulating stem Leydig cell development and steroidogenesis, but little is known about the regulatory mechanism. Using a seminiferous tubule culture system, we demonstrated that basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) can promote stem Leydig cell proliferation and commitment toward differentiation in testosterone-producing Leydig cells. However, these promoting effects decreased with an increase in the bFGF dose. Previous studies have reported that bFGF inhibits luteinizing hormone (LH)-stimulated androgen production by downregulating the mRNA expression of steroidogenic genes in immature Leydig cells. However, the expression levels of 677 microRNAs did not change significantly during the LH-mediated process of testosterone synthesis. Five microRNAs (miR-29a, -29c, -142-3p, -451 and -335) were identified, and their expression in immature Leydig cells was regulated simultaneously by bFGF and LH. These results suggested that the inhibition of LH-stimulated androgen production may be modulated by a change in bFGF-mediated microRNA expression, which further impacts the signaling pathway of testosterone biosynthesis and steroidogenic gene expression.

  14. Study of the corrosion products formed on a multiphase CuAlBe alloy in a sodium chloride solution by micro-Raman and in situ AFM measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Montecinos, S.; Simison, S. N.

    2011-06-01

    The corrosion products formed on a multiphase Cu-11.40Al-0.55Be (wt.%) alloy in 3.5% NaCl at open circuit potential, and their evolution with immersion time were studied mainly by micro-Raman and in situ AFM measurements. The aluminium content of each phase affects the formation of the corrosion products on them. After 1 day of immersion, γ 2 precipitates were more susceptible to dealuminization, while α' phase exhibited a high corrosion stability. The corrosion products evolved with immersion time, and CuCl 2 and a Cu 2O/CuO double layer film were the stable products formed on all the phases after long times.

  15. Sustainable access to data, products, services and software from the European seismological Research Infrastructures: the EPOS TCS Seismology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haslinger, Florian; Dupont, Aurelien; Michelini, Alberto; Rietbrock, Andreas; Sleeman, Reinoud; Wiemer, Stefan; Basili, Roberto; Bossu, Rémy; Cakti, Eser; Cotton, Fabrice; Crawford, Wayne; Diaz, Jordi; Garth, Tom; Locati, Mario; Luzi, Lucia; Pinho, Rui; Pitilakis, Kyriazis; Strollo, Angelo

    2016-04-01

    Easy, efficient and comprehensive access to data, data products, scientific services and scientific software is a key ingredient in enabling research at the frontiers of science. Organizing this access across the European Research Infrastructures in the field of seismology, so that it best serves user needs, takes advantage of state-of-the-art ICT solutions, provides cross-domain interoperability, and is organizationally and financially sustainable in the long term, is the core challenge of the implementation phase of the Thematic Core Service (TCS) Seismology within the EPOS-IP project. Building upon the existing European-level infrastructures ORFEUS for seismological waveforms, EMSC for seismological products, and EFEHR for seismological hazard and risk information, and implementing a pilot Computational Earth Science service starting from the results of the VERCE project, the work within the EPOS-IP project focuses on improving and extending the