Journal of Chemistry The latest articles from Hindawi Publishing Corporation © 2016 , Hindawi Publishing Corporation . All rights reserved. Performance Investigation of O-Ring Vacuum Membrane Distillation Module for Water Desalination Mon, 24 Oct 2016 12:21:22 +0000 A new O-ring flat sheet membrane module design was used to investigate the performance of Vacuum Membrane Distillation (VMD) for water desalination using two commercial polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) and polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) flat sheet hydrophobic membranes. The design of the membrane module proved its applicability for achieving a high heat transfer coefficient of the order of 103 (W/m2 K) and a high Reynolds number (Re). VMD experiments were conducted to measure the heat and mass transfer coefficients within the membrane module. The effects of the process parameters, such as the feed temperature, feed flow rate, vacuum degree, and feed concentration, on the permeate flux have been investigated. The feed temperature, feed flow rate, and vacuum degree play an important role in enhancing the performance of the VMD process; therefore, optimizing all of these parameters is the best way to achieve a high permeate flux. The PTFE membrane showed better performance than the PVDF membrane in VMD desalination. The obtained water flux is relatively high compared to that reported in the literature, reaching 43.8 and 52.6 (kg/m2 h) for PVDF and PTFE, respectively. The salt rejection of NaCl was higher than 99% for both membranes. Adnan Alhathal Alanezi, H. Abdallah, E. El-Zanati, Adnan Ahmad, and Adel O. Sharif Copyright © 2016 Adnan Alhathal Alanezi et al. All rights reserved. Chemically Diverse Secondary Metabolites from Davidia involucrata (Dove Tree) Thu, 20 Oct 2016 13:03:13 +0000 Dove tree, Davidia involucrata Baill. which is endemic in western China, is not only one of the best known relict species of the tertiary, but also a famous ornamental plant with dove-shaped flowers. A diverse array of secondary metabolites have been isolated and identified from Davidia involucrata. The 58 structures of the secondary metabolites were presented and classified as triterpenoids, tannins, phenolic compounds, lignans, flavonoids, alkaloids, and sterol. In addition, the biosynthetic route of some triterpenoids was proposed. Moreover, the advances in the discovery of unprecedented compounds and uncovering of notable bioactivities were highlighted in this review. Li-Yan Song, Ran Lin, Zu-Jian Wu, and Ming-An Ouyang Copyright © 2016 Li-Yan Song et al. All rights reserved. Instrumental and Sensory Analysis of the Properties of Traditional Chinese Fried Fritters Wed, 19 Oct 2016 13:41:04 +0000 The quality of traditional Chinese fried fritters is typically measured using human sensory evaluation techniques and physicochemical indices, the process of which is laborious and time-consuming. This study aimed to investigate the relationship between instrumental parameters, sensory criteria, and physicochemical indices. Significant correlations were found using principle component analysis. Volume, fat, texture, palatability, and instrumental parameters (hardness, fracturability, springiness, and gumminess) were found to be the main factors influencing the quality of Chinese fried fritters by principal component analysis (PCA) and instrumental methods, which were satisfactory replacement for human evaluation in correlation testing. Daming Fan, Bowen Yan, Huizhang Lian, Jianxin Zhao, and Hao Zhang Copyright © 2016 Daming Fan et al. All rights reserved. An Investigation of the Levels and Distribution of Selected Heavy Metals in Sediments and Plant Species within the Vicinity of Ex-Iron Mine in Bukit Besi Wed, 19 Oct 2016 09:20:46 +0000 An assessment of the abandoned mine impacts on the concentrations and distribution of heavy metals in surface sediments and plant species within the vicinity of an ex-iron mine in Malaysia was conducted. The sequential extraction method was used to extract anthropogenic metals in sediments. The results showed that metals in EFLE, AR, and OO fractions were higher than ambient concentrations which indicate that heavy metals have been loaded from ex-iron mining area into the surrounding aquatic environments. The metal accumulation in the four dominant plant species grown naturally within the vicinity of Bukit Besi ex-iron mining was investigated. Exceptional elevated concentrations of metal were found in plants and surface sediments. Several established criteria were applied to determine the hyperaccumulator plants. The results revealed that Melastoma malabathricum and Pityrogramma calomelanos are classified as Fe and Al hyperaccumulators, while Scirpus triqueter, Melastoma malabathricum, and Pityrogramma calomelanos were undoubtedly hyperaccumulator for Cd. Ahmad A. Kutty and Sarah A. Al-Mahaqeri Copyright © 2016 Ahmad A. Kutty and Sarah A. Al-Mahaqeri. All rights reserved. Synthesis and Spectral Studies of Ni(II) Dithiocarbamate Complexes and Their Use as Precursors for Nickel Sulphides Nanocrystals Tue, 18 Oct 2016 12:38:31 +0000 Ni(II) dithiocarbamate complexes have been synthesized and characterized by UV-Vis, FTIR, and NMR spectroscopic techniques. Electronic spectra measurements indicate that the complexes are four-coordinate square planar geometry while the FTIR confirmed that the dithiocarbamates act as bidentate chelating ligands. The compounds were used as single source precursors and thermolysed at 220°C to prepare HDA-capped NiS nanocrystals which were characterized by absorption and photoluminescence (PL) spectra measurements, powder X-ray diffraction (PXRD), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and energy dispersive spectroscopy (EDS). Absorption spectra studies showed that the synthesized NiS nanoparticles are blue-shifted relative to the bulk material and PL studies showed emission maxima that are red-shifted compared to the absorption band edges. The XRD patterns of the as-prepared NiS nanoparticles revealed cubic crystalline phases. TEM images showed spherical and close-to-spherical nanocrystals with the size in the range 12–38 nm for NiS1, 8–11 nm for NiS2, and 9–16 nm for NiS3. SEM images showed homogeneous surface morphology and EDS confirmed the presence of Ni and S and the formation of NiS nanoparticles. Azile Nqombolo and Peter A. Ajibade Copyright © 2016 Azile Nqombolo and Peter A. Ajibade. All rights reserved. Electrochemical and Mechanical Failure of Graphite-Based Anode Materials in Li-Ion Batteries for Electric Vehicles Sun, 16 Oct 2016 16:03:07 +0000 Graphite-based anode materials undergo electrochemical reactions, coupling with mechanical degradation during battery operation, can affect or deteriorate the performance of Li-ion batteries dramatically, and even lead to the battery failure in electric vehicle. First, a single particle model (SPM) based on kinetics of electrochemical reactions was built in this paper. Then the Li-ion concentration and evolution of diffusion induced stresses (DISs) within the SPM under galvanostatic operating conditions were analyzed by utilizing a mathematical method. Next, evolution of stresses or strains in the SPM, together with mechanical degradation of anode materials, was elaborated in detail. Finally, in order to verify the hypothesis aforementioned surface and morphology of the graphite-based anode dismantled from fresh and degraded cells after galvanostatic charge/discharge cycling were analyzed by X-ray diffraction (XRD), field-emission scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The results show that large volume changes of anode materials caused DISs during Li-ion insertion and extraction within the active particles. The continuous accumulations of DISs brought about mechanical failure of the anode eventually. Cheng Lin, Aihua Tang, Ningning Wu, and Jilei Xing Copyright © 2016 Cheng Lin et al. All rights reserved. A Simple and Convenient Method for Simultaneous Determination of Schizandrol A, Schizandrol B, Schisandrin A, γ-Schisandrin, and Schisandrin C Thu, 13 Oct 2016 14:39:06 +0000 A simple, rapid, and specific HPLC method was established for simultaneous determination of five major lignans (Schizandrol A, Schizandrol B, Schisandrin A, γ-Schisandrin, and Schisandrin C) in Schisandra chinensis. The five lignans can be separated completely on Kromasil C18 column (250 nm × 4.6 nm) and then detected at 254 nm using methanol (mobile phase A) and water (mobile phase B) with gradient elution as the mobile phase at 1.0 mL/min flow rate. The column temperature was 30°C. The method was validated in terms of linearity, precision, stability, repeatability, and recovery. Results showed that the method is accurate and reproducible. Yu Zhou, Wu Ling Wei, Jiang Xing Hua, and Qingsheng Fan Copyright © 2016 Yu Zhou et al. All rights reserved. A Synthetic Approach to Pyrazolopyranopyrimidinones and Pyrazolopyranooxazinones as Antimicrobial Agents Wed, 12 Oct 2016 07:09:45 +0000 The hitherto unknown 6-amino-4-(2-chloro-5-nitrophenyl)-3-methyl-1,4-dihydropyrano[2,3-c] pyrazole-5-carbonitrile 1a was synthesized. Both 1a and its 2,4 dichlorophenyl derivative 1b were utilized as building blocks for the preparation of novel class of pyrazolopyrano-[oxazines 2a–d and pyrimidinones 3a–d]. Synthesis of these compounds was achieved by two alternative acylation steps followed by ammonolysis. The structures of the synthesized compounds were elucidated by spectral data and elemental analysis. Screening and evaluation of these products as antimicrobial agents showed that the derivatives 1b, 2s, 3b, and 3d possess a potent activity. A. K. Elziaty, G. Bassioni, A. M. A. Hassan, H. A. Derbala, and M. S. Abdel-Aziz Copyright © 2016 A. K. Elziaty et al. All rights reserved. A Benzochalcone Derivative, (E)-1-(2-hydroxy-6-methoxyphenyl)-3-(naphthalen-2-yl)prop-2-en-1-one (DK-512), Inhibits Tumor Invasion through Inhibition of the TNFα-Induced NF-κB/MMP-9 Axis in MDA-MB-231 Breast Cancer Cells Tue, 11 Oct 2016 13:34:40 +0000 Tumor invasion is a critical step in tumor metastasis. In this study, we synthesized a novel benzochalcone derivative, (E)-1-(2-hydroxy-6-methoxyphenyl)-3-(naphthalen-2-yl) prop-2-en-1-one (DK-512), and characterized its effects on tumor invasion and its mechanism of action. We found that DK-512 strongly inhibited invasion of metastatic MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cells as revealed by a three-dimensional spheroid culture system. Tumor invasion and metastasis require disruption of the extracellular matrix. Matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9) is an endopeptidase that degrades extracellular matrix components. DK-512 significantly reduced tumor necrosis factor-α- (TNFα-) induced MMP-9 mRNA expression through the inhibition of RelA nuclear factor- (NF-) κB transcription factor. As our study was assessed in vitro, further works about in vivo efficacy of DK-512 are needed to gain further insights into whether DK-512 could be utilized as a scaffold for the development of antimetastatic agents for breast cancer. Soon Young Shin, Chang Gun Kim, Seunghyun Ahn, You Jung Jung, Dongsoo Koh, Young Han Lee, and Yoongho Lim Copyright © 2016 Soon Young Shin et al. All rights reserved. Synthesis of α-MnO2 Nanomaterial from a Precursor γ-MnO2: Characterization and Comparative Adsorption of Pb(II) and Fe(III) Tue, 11 Oct 2016 09:52:52 +0000 α-MnO2 nanostructure was successfully synthesized via hydrothermal treatment of a precursor γ-MnO2. Structure, morphology, and BET surface area were characterized using X-ray powder diffraction (XRD), Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), and Brunauer-Emmett-Teller nitrogen adsorption (BET-N2 adsorption). Thermal analysis result showed that α-MnO2 nanorods were formed from γ-MnO2 at 600°C. In addition, Pb(II) and Fe(III) adsorptive properties were investigated in an optimal condition. Results showed that equilibrium adsorption was obtained after 60 minutes for Pb(II) at pH = 4.0 and 80 minutes for Fe(III) at pH = 3.5 with 240 rpm of shaking speed overall. Experimental data was analyzed using three models: Langmuir, Freundlich, and Sips. Adsorption capacities () from the Langmuir isotherm models are 124.87 mg/g for Pb(II) and 30.83 mg/g for Fe(III). Along with the highest corelation coefficients, it is clear that the adsorption of Pb(II) and Fe(III) ions on α-MnO2 surface followed Sips model. Kinetic studies indicated that the uptake of Pb(II) and Fe(III) occurred in the pseudo-second-order model with two stages for Pb(II) and three stages for Fe(III). Van-Phuc Dinh, Ngoc-Chung Le, Thi-Phuong-Tu Nguyen, and Ngoc-Tuan Nguyen Copyright © 2016 Van-Phuc Dinh et al. All rights reserved. Preparation of Cathode-Anode Integrated Ceramic Filler and Application in a Coupled ME-EGSB-SBR System for Chlortetracycline Industrial Wastewater Systematic Treatment Mon, 10 Oct 2016 14:53:27 +0000 Chlortetracycline (CTC) contamination of aquatic systems has seriously threatened the environmental and human health throughout the world. Conventional biological treatments could not effectively treat the CTC industrial wastewater and few studies have been focused on the wastewater systematic treatment. Firstly, 40.0 wt% of clay, 30.0 wt% of dewatered sewage sludge (DSS), and 30.0 wt% of scrap iron (SI) were added to sinter the new media (cathode-anode integrated ceramic filler, CAICF). Subsequently, the nontoxic CAICF with rough surface and porous interior packed into ME reactor, severing as a pretreatment step, was effective in removing CTC residue and improving the wastewater biodegradability. Secondly, expanded granular sludge bed (EGSB) and sequencing batch reactor (SBR), serving as the secondary biological treatment, were mainly focusing on chemical oxygen demand (COD) and ammonia nitrogen (NH3-N) removal. The coupled ME-EGSB-SBR system removed about 98.0% of CODcr and 95.0% of NH3-N and the final effluent met the national discharged standard (C standard of CJ 343-2010, China). Therefore, the CTC industrial wastewater could be effectively treated by the coupled ME-EGSB-SBR system, which has significant implications for a cost-efficient system in CTC industrial systematic treatment and solid wastes (DSS and SI) treatment. Yuanfeng Qi, Suqing Wu, Fei Xi, Shengbing He, Chunzhen Fan, Bibo Dai, Jungchen Huang, Meng Meng, Xiangguo Zhu, and Lei Wang Copyright © 2016 Yuanfeng Qi et al. All rights reserved. A Long-Chain Alkylation of Dialdehyde Starch to Improve Its Thermal Stability and Hydrophobicity Mon, 10 Oct 2016 11:21:13 +0000 Hydrophobic dialdehyde starch (HDAS) was synthesized by dialdehyde starch (DAS) and eighteen-alkyl primary amine as the raw material in DMSO. The effect of the reaction conditions on the yield of HDAS was investigated such as catalyst content, reaction temperature, reaction time, and the in-feed molar ratio of -CHO/-NH2. Moreover, the optimized test parameters were obtained by conducting orthogonal experiment. The molecular structure and the morphology of HDAS were characterized via Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) and scanning electron microscope (SEM). And the thermal stability and the hydrophobic properties of HDAS were investigated by thermal gravimetric analyzer (TG) and the hydrophobic testing. The results indicate that the yield of HDAS is the highest up to 44.21%, with feed composition 1 : 0.9, reaction temperature 40°C, reaction time 8 h, and acetic acid content 3%. And the introduction of the long-chain alkyl groups into the DAS backbones will ameliorate efficaciously the thermal stability and the hydrophobic properties of DAS, which almost has no effect on the DAS particle size. Jiang Zhu, Zhaodong Wang, Haitao Ni, Xiang Liu, Jian Ma, and Jianxin Du Copyright © 2016 Jiang Zhu et al. All rights reserved. Arsenic Transfer from As-Rich Sediments to River Water in the Presence of Biofilms Wed, 05 Oct 2016 14:38:27 +0000 The influence of epipsammic biofilms on As release from river sediments was evaluated in a microcosm experiment where biofilms were grown on sediments containing 106 mg kg−1 As, collected in the Anllóns River, and compared with control systems without biofilms. The As transfer to the water column was low (<0.11% of total As in the sediment) and was further reduced by 64% in the presence of biofilms. was the predominant species in the overlying water in both systems. concentration was higher (up to 12% of total dissolved As) in the control systems than in the systems with biofilms, where this species was almost absent. This fact is of toxicological relevance due to the usually higher mobility and toxicity of the reduced species. Control systems exhibited higher As mobility in water, in sulphate solution, and in weak acid medium and higher bioavailability in diffusive gradient in thin films (DGT) devices. Arsenic retained by the biofilm was equally distributed between extracellular and intracellular compartments. Inside the cells, significant concentrations of , monomethylarsonic acid (), and dimethylarsinic acid () were detected, suggesting that active methylation (detoxification) processes are occurring in the intracellular compartment. Diego Martiñá Prieto, Verónica Martín-Liñares, Verónica Piñeiro, and María Teresa Barral Copyright © 2016 Diego Martiñá Prieto et al. All rights reserved. Rapid Determination of the Monosaccharide Composition and Contents in Tea Polysaccharides from Yingshuang Green Tea by Pre-Column Derivatization HPLC Wed, 05 Oct 2016 13:35:12 +0000 A pre-column derivatization high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) method was developed and optimized to characterize and quantify the monosaccharides present in tea polysaccharides (TPS) isolated from Yingshuang green tea. TPS sample was hydrolyzed with trifluoroacetic acid, subjected to pre-column derivatization using 1-phenyl-3-methyl-5-pyrazolone (PMP), and separated on an Agilent TC-C18 column (4.6 mm × 250 mm, 5 μm) with UV detection at 250 nm. A mixture of ten PMP derivatives of standard monosaccharides (mannose, ribose, rhamnose, glucuronic acid, galacturonic acid, glucose, xylose, galactose, arabinose, and fucose) could be baseline separated within 20 min. Moreover, quantitative analysis of the component monosaccharides in Yingshuang green tea TPS was achieved, indicating the TPS consisted of mannose, ribose, rhamnose, glucuronic acid, galacturonic acid, glucose, xylose, galactose, and arabinose in the molar contents of 0.72, 0.78, 0.89, 0.13, 0.15, 0.36, 0.39, 0.36, 0.36, and 0.38 μM, respectively. Recovery efficiency for component monosaccharides from TPS ranged from 93.6 to 102.4% with RSD values lower than 2.5%. In conclusion, pre-column derivatization HPLC provides a rapid, reproducible, accurate, and quantitative method for analysis of the monosaccharide composition and contents in TPS, which may help to further explore the relationship between TPS monosaccharides isolated from different tea varieties and their biological activity. Yujie Ai, Zhi Yu, Yuqiong Chen, Xiaojing Zhu, Zeyi Ai, Shuyuan Liu, and Dejiang Ni Copyright © 2016 Yujie Ai et al. All rights reserved. A Study on the Production Process Control of Zanthoxylum bungeanum Maxim Seed Kernel Oil without Trans-Fatty Acids Tue, 04 Oct 2016 14:22:33 +0000 The process control of the production of Zanthoxylum bungeanum Maxim seed kernel oil (ZSKO) with no trans-fatty acids (TFAs) was investigated. Results revealed that drying temperature and time had a small effect on TFA formation in ZSKO. And high concentrations of sodium hydroxide solution had some effect on TFA formation in ZKSO, but there were no TFAs when the concentration of the sodium hydroxide solution was lower than 20% and even at boiling temperature for one hour. The roasting temperature and duration for Zanthoxylum bungeanum Maxim seed (ZS) should be properly controlled at 100°C for six hours or 150°C for two hours. ZS, which has a moisture content of 18%, was pressed four times (two hours) at less than 60°C, and ZSKO was obtained by collection through centrifuge separation. This contained 90.84% unsaturated fatty acids, which mainly include 32.49%  α-linolenic acid, 29.88% linoleic acid, and 27.52% oleic acids; and there was no TFA. Its acidic value and peroxide value conformed to China standards for edible oil. Therefore, ZKSO could be used as a healthy food for further development. Zhongyi Yin, Shiyong Yao, Lixia Guo, and Xuxu Zheng Copyright © 2016 Zhongyi Yin et al. All rights reserved. Sedimentary Organic Matter and Phosphate along the Kapuas River (West Kalimantan, Indonesia) Tue, 04 Oct 2016 11:43:45 +0000 This study assessed the sedimentary organic matter (OM) and phosphate along the world’s longest river on an island: the Kapuas River in West Kalimantan, Indonesia. The surface sediment was tested using the loss-on-ignition experiment to determine the % labile OM, % refractory OM, and % total OM and the Rp values (the ratio of refractory to total OM). The C/N ratios and the inorganic phosphate (IP), organic phosphate (OP), and total phosphate (TP) levels were also determined. The combination of high Rp values and low C/N ratios along the upper river indicated the possible presence of relatively degraded material; the low Rp values and high C/N ratios downstream were indicative of a fresher terrestrial signal. Sedimentary P levels were the highest along the densely populated areas downstream from the Kapuas River; the second highest along the midstream river, which is surrounded by oil palm plantations; and the lowest along the upper river, which is surrounded by forest. Higher levels of OM, IP, OP, and TP downstream along the Kapuas River indicated the presence of anthropogenic sources of OM and P. Pei Sun Loh, Chen-Tung Arthur Chen, Gusti Z. Anshari, Jiann-Yuh Lou, Jough-Tai Wang, Shu-Lun Wang, and Bing-Jye Wang Copyright © 2016 Pei Sun Loh et al. All rights reserved. Catalytic Pyrolysis of Low Density Polyethylene Using Cetyltrimethyl Ammonium Encapsulated Monovacant Keggin Units and ZSM-5 Mon, 03 Oct 2016 08:22:24 +0000 The effect of the catalysts on the pyrolysis of commercial low density polyethylene (LDPE) has been studied in a batch reactor. The thermal catalytic cracking of the LDPE has been done using cetyltrimethyl ammonium encapsulated monovacant keggin units (C19H42N)4H3(PW11O39), labeled as CTA-POM and compared with the ZSM-5 catalyst. GC-MS results showed that catalytic cracking of LDPE beads generated oilier fraction over CTA-POM as compared to ZSM-5. Thus, the use of CTA-POM is more significant because it yields more useful fraction. It was also found that the temperature required for the thermal degradation of LDPE was lower when CTA-POM was used as a catalyst while high temperature was required for degradation over ZSM-5 catalyst. Better activity of CTA-POM was due to hydrophobic nature of CTA moiety which helps in catalyst mobility and increases its interaction with hydrocarbons. Madeeha Batool, Asma Tufail Shah, Muhammad Imran Din, and Baoshan Li Copyright © 2016 Madeeha Batool et al. All rights reserved. Winter Maintenance Wash-Water Heavy Metal Removal Pilot Scale Evaluation Thu, 29 Sep 2016 09:55:56 +0000 To encourage sustainable engineering practices, departments of transportation are interested in reusing winter maintenance truck wash water as part of their brine production and future road application. Traffic-related metals in the wash water, however, could limit this option. The objective of this work was to conduct a pilot scale evaluation of heavy metal (copper, zinc, iron, and lead) removal in a filtration unit (maximum flow rate of 45 L/minute) containing proprietary (MAR Systems Sorbster®) media. Three different trials were conducted and approximately 10,000 L of wash water collected from a winter maintenance facility in Ohio was treated with the pilot unit. Lab studies were also performed on six wash-water samples from multiple facilities to assess particle size removal and estimate settling time as a potential removal mechanism during wash-water storage. Pilot unit total metal removal efficiencies were 79%, 77%, 63%, and 94% for copper, zinc, iron, and lead, respectively. Particle settling calculation estimates for copper and zinc show that 10 hours in storage can also effectively reduce heavy metal concentrations in winter maintenance wash water in excess of 70%. These pilot scale results show promise for reducing heavy metal concentrations to an acceptable level for reuse. Christopher M. Miller, William H. Schneider IV, Mufuta J. Tshimanga, and Philip Custer Copyright © 2016 Christopher M. Miller et al. All rights reserved. Comparative Study on Adsorptive Characteristics of Diazinon and Chlorpyrifos from Water by Thermosensitive Nanosphere Polymer Thu, 29 Sep 2016 09:01:11 +0000 Diazinon and chlorpyrifos are two common organophosphorus poisons to fight the pests in Iran. The removal of these poisons from water by thermosensitive nanosphere polymer (TNP), synthesized from the copolymerization of N-isopropylacrylamide and 3-allyloxy-1,2-propanediol, was investigated. The effect of pH, contact time, and the initial concentration on the removal amount was studied. The highest removal amount of these poisons by TNP occurred at pH 7. The contact time increase improves the removal amount and the equilibrium contact time for diazinon and chlorpyrifos was 10 and 18 min, respectively. For low concentration of less than 50 mgL−1 it was shown that removal capacity remains above 95%. The initial concentration above 50 mgL−1 decreased the removal amount, in which chlorpyrifos showed a greater decrease. The kinetic data has been checked using pseudo first-order, pseudo second-order, and intraparticle diffusion equations. The intraparticle diffusion model had the best conformability for the adsorption process. Faranak Pishgar, Homayon Ahmad Panahi, Ali Akbar Khodaparast Haghi, Vahid Motaghitalab, and Amir Hesam Hasani Copyright © 2016 Faranak Pishgar et al. All rights reserved. Fractional Characteristics of Heavy Metals Pb, Zn, Cu, and Cd in Sewer Sediment from Areas in Central Beijing, China Mon, 26 Sep 2016 16:38:23 +0000 To identify the distribution of heavy metals in sewer sediments and assess their potential harmfulness to the environment and human health, the occurrence of Pb, Zn, Cu, and Cd in the sewer sediment of six functional areas and two streets in an inner-city suburb of Beijing, China, was investigated by using a sequential extraction procedure. Results show that the concentrations of Cu, Zn, Cd, and Pb vary between 50 and 175, between 80 and 180, between 0.75 and 2.5, and between 20 and 110 mg/kg, respectively, and Fe-Mn oxide fraction is significant for all metals in sampling areas. Pollution assessment shows that 1–2% of Cu at Chegongzhuang Street and 1–3% of Zn at Fuwai Street in the exchangeable fractions are of low risk. 10–25% of Cd at six functional areas indicates medium risk. 40–60% of Pb at Fuwai Street existing in the exchangeable fractions is of high to very high risk. The sum of these metals associated with exchangeable, carbonate bound, and Fe-Mn oxide fractions is quite high; however, these three fractions represent the proportion of heavy metals that can be remobilized by changes in environmental conditions. Haiyan Li, Mingxiu Wang, Wenwen Zhang, Ziyang Zhang, and Xiaoran Zhang Copyright © 2016 Haiyan Li et al. All rights reserved. Chemical Composition and α-Glucosidase Inhibitory Activity of Vietnamese Citrus Peels Essential Oils Mon, 26 Sep 2016 13:08:59 +0000 Background. Inhibition of α-glucosidase is an important factor to control postprandial hyperglycemia in type 2 diabetes mellitus. Citrus essential oils (CEO) are among the most widely used essential oils, and some of them exhibited promising antidiabetic effect. However, the α-glucosidase inhibition of CEO has not been investigated so far. The present work aims to evaluate the α-glucosidase inhibition of essential oils from six Vietnamese Citrus peels. Methods. The chemical composition of essential oils obtained by hydrodistillation from six Citrus peels was analyzed by GC-MS. All essential oils were tested for their inhibitory activity on α-glucosidase using p-nitrophenyl-α-D-glucopyranoside as substrate. Results. In Buddha’s hand and lime peels, the major components were limonene (59.0–61.31%) and γ-terpinene (13.98–23.84%) while limonene (90.95–95.74%) was most abundant in pomelo, orange, tangerine, and calamondin peels. Among the essential oils, the Buddha’s hand oil showed the most significant α-glucosidase inhibitory effect with the IC50 value of 412.2 μg/mL. The combination of the Buddha’s hand essential oil and the antidiabetic drug acarbose increased the inhibitory effect. Conclusions. The results suggested the potential use of Buddha’s hand essential oil as an alternative in treatment of type 2 diabetes mellitus. Nguyen Hai Dang, Pham Huong Nhung, Bui Thi Mai Anh, Dinh Thi Thu Thuy, Chau Van Minh, and Nguyen Tien Dat Copyright © 2016 Nguyen Hai Dang et al. All rights reserved. The Synthesis of Hydroxybutyrate-Based Block Polyurethane from Telechelic Diols with Robust Thermal and Mechanical Properties Tue, 20 Sep 2016 16:49:05 +0000 A series of novel amphiphilic block polyurethanes (PUHE) have been successfully synthesized by solution polymerization of the derived PHB-diol and poly(ethylene glycol) with a coupling agent of 1,6-hexamethylene diisocyanate (HDI), while the PHB-diol was prepared via the transesterification of PHB and ethylene glycol. The hydroxyl contents in PHB-diols range from 1.36 to 1.99 (the molar ratio) as determined by nonaqueous titration. The molecular weight and chemical compositions of PUHE and PHB-diol were investigated by GPC, 1H NMR, and FTIR in detail, which confirm the successful synthesis of PUHE. The tensile strength and elongation at break of PUHE could reach as high as 20 MPa and 210%, as the content of PHB in PUHE is 33%. TGA curves indicate that block-bonding between PHB-diol and PEG increases the thermal stability of PHB-diol. Film degradation of PUHE was studied by weight loss and scanning electron microscope (SEM). It could be concluded that degradation occurred gradually from the surface to the inside and that the degradation rate could be controlled by adjusting the PHB/PEG ratios. These properties make PUHE able to be used as a biodegradable thermoplastic elastomer. Dan Xue, Xiaodong Fan, Zengping Zhang, and Wei Lv Copyright © 2016 Dan Xue et al. All rights reserved. Fe3O4/Reduced Graphene Oxide Nanocomposite: Synthesis and Its Application for Toxic Metal Ion Removal Tue, 20 Sep 2016 16:39:35 +0000 The synthesis of reduced graphene oxide modified by magnetic iron oxide (Fe3O4/rGO) and its application for heavy metals removal were demonstrated. The obtained samples were characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD), nitrogen adsorption/desorption isotherms, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR), and magnetic measurement. The results showed that the obtained graphene oxide (GO) contains a small part of initial graphite as well as reduced oxide graphene. GO exhibits very high surface area in comparison with initial graphite. The morphology of Fe3O4/rGO consists of very fine spherical iron nanooxide particles in nanoscale. The formal kinetics and adsorption isotherms of As(V), Ni(II), and Pb(II) over obtained Fe3O4/rGO have been investigated. Fe3O4/rGO exhibits excellent heavy metal ions adsorption indicating that it is a potential adsorbent for water sources contaminated by heavy metals. Nguyen Thi Vuong Hoan, Nguyen Thi Anh Thu, Hoang Van Duc, Nguyen Duc Cuong, Dinh Quang Khieu, and Vien Vo Copyright © 2016 Nguyen Thi Vuong Hoan et al. All rights reserved. Geochemical and Isotopic Characterisation of Actual Lacustrine Sediments from the Hydrothermal Lake Specchio di Venere, Pantelleria Island (Italy) Tue, 20 Sep 2016 10:27:03 +0000 Hydrothermal lakes are a very common feature in volcanic environments, and among these lake Specchio di Venere (Pantelleria island, Italy) has attracted the interest of several researchers due to its peculiar characteristics. With the aim of improving the knowledge of its mineralogy, our work pointed out the characterisation of the bottom lake sediments. We collected and analysed 5 sediments cores around the shoreline, determining the mineralogical phases, concentration of major, minor, and trace elements, and the isotopic composition of carbon and oxygen in the carbonate phases. Our findings remarked a general compositional homogeneity in both the vertical and horizontal distribution of mineral phases, with the exception of peculiar geological niches connoted by biological and hydrothermal activities. Marianna Cangemi, Paolo Madonia, Sergio Bellomo, and Ygor Oliveri Copyright © 2016 Marianna Cangemi et al. All rights reserved. Retracted: Evaluation of the Stability of the Total Antioxidant Capacity, Polyphenol Contents, and Starch Hydrolase Inhibitory Activities of Kombucha Teas Using an In Vitro Model of Digestion Thu, 15 Sep 2016 14:06:27 +0000 Journal of Chemistry Copyright © 2016 Journal of Chemistry. All rights reserved. Shelf-Life Prediction of Extra Virgin Olive Oils Using an Empirical Model Based on Standard Quality Tests Wed, 14 Sep 2016 13:13:08 +0000 Extra virgin olive oil shelf-life could be defined as the length of time under normal storage conditions within which no off-flavours or defects are developed and quality parameters such as peroxide value and specific absorbance are retained within accepted limits for this commercial category. Prediction of shelf-life is a desirable goal in the food industry. Even when extra virgin olive oil shelf-life should be one of the most important quality markers for extra virgin olive oil, it is not recognised as a legal parameter in most regulations and standards around the world. The proposed empirical formula to be evaluated in the present study is based on common quality tests with known and predictable result changes over time and influenced by different aspects of extra virgin olive oil with a meaningful influence over its shelf-life. The basic quality tests considered in the formula are Rancimat® or induction time (IND); 1,2-diacylglycerols (DAGs); pyropheophytin (PPP); and free fatty acids (FFA). This paper reports research into the actual shelf-life of commercially packaged extra virgin olive oils versus the predicted shelf-life of those oils determined by analysing the expected deterioration curves for the three basic quality tests detailed above. Based on the proposed model, shelf-life is predicted by choosing the lowest predicted shelf-life of any of those three tests. Claudia Guillaume and Leandro Ravetti Copyright © 2016 Claudia Guillaume and Leandro Ravetti. All rights reserved. Assessment of Physicochemical Properties of Tequila Brands: Authentication and Quality Thu, 08 Sep 2016 10:59:38 +0000 Several physicochemical properties were measured in commercial tequila brands: conductivity, density, pH, sound velocity, viscosity, and refractive index. Physicochemical data were analyzed by Principal Component Analysis (PCA), cluster analysis, and the one-way analysis of variance to identify the quality and authenticity of tequila brands. According to the Principal Component Analysis, the existence of 3 main components was identified, explaining the 87.76% of the total variability of physicochemical measurements. In general, all tequila brands appeared together in the plane of the first two principal components. In the cluster analysis, four groups showing similar characteristics were identified. In particular, one of the clusters contains some tequila brands that are not identified by the Regulatory Council of Tequila and do not meet the quality requirements established in the Mexican Official Standard 006. These tequila brands are characterized by having higher conductivity and density and lower viscosity and refractive index, determined by one-way analysis of variance. Therefore, these economical measurements, PCA, and cluster analysis can be used to determinate the authenticity of a tequila brand. Alejandra Carreon-Alvarez, Amaury Suárez-Gómez, Florentina Zurita, Sergio Gómez-Salazar, J. Felix Armando Soltero, Maximiliano Barcena-Soto, Norberto Casillas, Porfirio-Gutierrez, and Edgar David Moreno-Medrano Copyright © 2016 Alejandra Carreon-Alvarez et al. All rights reserved. Effect of Carbon Supported Pt Catalysts on Selective Hydrogenation of Cinnamaldehyde Wed, 07 Sep 2016 14:05:17 +0000 Selective hydrogenation of cinnamaldehyde (CAL) to cinnamyl alcohol (COL) is of both fundamental and industrial interest. It is of great significance to evaluate the possible differences between different supports arising from metal dispersion and electronic effects, in terms of activity and selectivity. Herein, Pt catalysts on different carbon supports including carbon nanotubes (CNTs) and reduced graphene oxides (RGO) were developed by a simple wet impregnation method. The resultant catalysts were well characterized by XRD, Raman, N2 physisorption, TEM, and XPS analysis. Applied in the hydrogenation of cinnamaldehyde, 3.5 wt% Pt/CNT shows much higher selectivity towards cinnamyl alcohol (62%) than 3.5 wt% Pt/RGO@SiO2 (48%). The enhanced activity can be ascribed to the high graphitization degree of CNTs and high density of dispersed Pt electron cloud. Qing Han, Yunfei Liu, Dong Wang, Fulong Yuan, Xiaoyu Niu, and Yujun Zhu Copyright © 2016 Qing Han et al. All rights reserved. Cellular Composition Changes and Nitrogen Uptake under Extra-Limited Nitrogen Conditions by Thermosynechococcus sp. CL-1 Carbon Biofixation Wed, 07 Sep 2016 11:55:40 +0000 Two types of culture systems were used (continuous and batch) which were fed using a simulated absorbent from a scrubber with carbonate/bicarbonate as the carbon source and nitrate as the nitrogen source by a thermophile strain, Thermosynechococcus sp. CL-1 (TCL-1) at 50°C. The lipid, carbohydrate, and protein cellular components which can be used as bioenergy precursors along with their content as a function of various C/N ratios are quantified. Maximum lipid productivity of about 150 mg L−1 d−1 is obtained while the CO2 uptake rate is 917 mg L−1 d−1 at a dilution rate of 0.06 h−1 when both carbon and nitrogen sources are not limited. With high range of nitrogen concentrations batch culture test, TCL-1 reveals extra-high affinity on nitrogen source under limited carbon source conditions since the affinity constant is 0.12 mM. In addition, the flow of carbon fixed during photosynthesis seems to switch from the protein synthesis pathway to forming carbohydrate rather than lipid under N-limitation and a high C/N ratio for TCL-1, resulting in a maximal carbohydrate content of 61%. Consequently, TCL-1 is an appropriate candidate to treat the wastewater of environment and produce the bioenergy precursors under extreme limited nitrogen conditions. Tseng Chi-Ming, Ko Tzu-Hsing, Hsueh Hsin-Ta, Chen Hsing-Hui, Ray Dah-Tong, Shen Yun-Hwei, and Chu Hsin Copyright © 2016 Tseng Chi-Ming et al. All rights reserved. Ultrasonic Extraction of Oil from Caesalpinia spinosa (Tara) Seeds Tue, 30 Aug 2016 09:28:42 +0000 Oil extracted from the seeds of Caesalpinia spinosa (common name: tara) can be used in a number of applications. In the present study, tara seed oil was obtained by ultrasonic extraction. The effects of different solvents, particle sizes in the ground seed samples, extraction times, ultrasonication powers, extraction temperatures, and liquid–solid ratios on the yield of tara seed oil were investigated. The yield from the ultrasonic extraction was compared with that from traditional Soxhlet extraction. The results showed that ultrasonic extraction could be completed in a shorter time with reduced solvent consumption. The yield of tara seed oil increased with increasing ultrasonication power and extraction temperature. Gas chromatography was used to analyze the fatty acid compositions of the oils extracted by the two methods. The fatty acid compositions of the oils from both extraction methods were similar, which indicates that ultrasonic extraction is a viable alternative means of extraction. It is a rapid, efficient, and simple method for production of lipids from tara seeds. Zhan-jun Li, Feng-jian Yang, Lei Yang, and Yuan-Gang Zu Copyright © 2016 Zhan-jun Li et al. All rights reserved.