The ultimate bearing capacity is an essential requirement in design quantification for shallow foundations especially
for structures built on large rock masses. In many engineering projects, structures built on foundation of heavily jointed
rock masses may face issues such as instability and sudden catastrophic rock slope failure. Determination of the ultimate
bearing capacity (Qult) of foundations resting on rock mass has traditionally been determined by employing several
strength criterions. One of the accepted and widely implemented methods is to use the Hoek-Brown failure criterion 2002,
where the required parameters are determined from a rock mass classification system, Geological Strength Index (GSI).
This paper defines an assessment for ultimate bearing capacity (Qult) based on the Hoek-Brown failure criterion 2002
for a granitic rock slope beneath a 20 m diameter concrete water tank at Bandar Mahkota Cheras, Kajang, Selangor.
Based on the Hoek-Brown failure criterion 2002, the ultimate bearing capacity (Qult) of rock mass was 7.91 MPa. The
actual stress acting on the rock mass was 0.32 MPa. The assessment showed that the rock mass is safe since the ultimate
bearing capacity (Qult) is 24.7 times higher than the actual stress acting on the rock mass.
MeSH terms: Engineering; Foundations; Geology; Silicon Dioxide; Water
The present study was conducted to determine the prevalence and antibiotic resistance of Salmonella sp. isolated from
African catfish (Clarias gariepinus). A total of 30 catfish were harvested from four different farms and four different
wet markets. A total of 60 samples (30 catfish skins and 30 catfish intestines) were used for Salmonella sp. isolation
(pellet-method), its biochemical and serological test. Confirmation of Salmonella sp. were determined by polyvalent
O antisera and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) using genus specific primers for invA genes (DNA amplification
showed one distinct band with molecular weight of 389 bp) and the species of isolated Salmonella sp. were identified
by serotyping. The result showed 6/30 (20%) of fish or 6/60 (10%) of organ samples were positive for Salmonella sp.
Among those positive for Salmonella sp., 4/6 were from intestine samples and 2/6 were from skin samples. No significant
difference was found in the prevalence of Salmonella sp. isolates between fish harvested from farms and wet markets
(p-value= 0.406). The Salmonella serovars identified were Salmonella corvallis (n=3), Salmonella mbandaka (n=2)
and Salmonella typhmurium (n=1). Salmonella sp. isolates were resistance to Penicillin (P 10, 100%), Clindamycin
(DA 2, 100%), Tetracycline (TE 30, 100%) and Rifampicin (RD 5, 100%) and all of the isolates were susceptible or
intermediate resistance to Ceftazidime (CAZ 30) and Trimethopin (W 5). Multiple antibiotic resistance (MAR) index of
all Salmonella sp. isolates in current study was 0.67 indicating that fish sampled in the present study was under high
risk of been exposed to the tested antibiotics.
Rafflesia tuanku-halimii, a new species from Peninsular Malaysia, is herewith described and illustrated. It is related to
R. azlanii and R. sharifah-hapsahiae by coalesced warts on it lobes. Rafflesia tuanku-halimii is different from them in
having window covered by almost united rings and these rings almost wholly covering the window.
Based on the hydraulic fracture width gradually narrows along the fracture length, with consideration of the mutual influences of fracture, non-uniform inflow of fractures segments and variable mass flow in the fracture comprehensively, a spatial separation method and time separation method were used to establish fracture horizontal well’s dynamic coupling model of reservoir seepage and fracture flow. The results showed that the calculation productivity of variable width model is higher than that of the fixed width model, while the difference becomes smaller as time increase. Due to mutual interference of the fractures, the production of outer fracture is higher than that of the inner fracture. When the dimensionless fracture conductivity is 0.1, the middle segment of the fracture dominates the productivity and local peak emerges near the horizontal well. The flow in the fracture is with the ‘double U’ type distribution. As the dimensionless fracture conductivity increase, the fractures productivity mainly through the tips and the flow in the fractures with the ‘U’ type distribution. Using the established fracture width variable productivity prediction model, one can achieve the quantitative optimization of fracture shape.
In incomplete contingency tables, some cells may contain structural zeros. The quasi-independence model, which is a generalization of the independence model, is most commonly model used to analyze incomplete contingency tables. Goodness of fit tests of the quasi-independence model are usually based on Pearson chi square test statistic and likelihood ratio test statistic. In power divergence statistics family, the selection of power divergence parameter is of interest in multivariate discrete data. In this study, a simulation study is conducted to evaluate the performance of the power divergence statistics under quasi independence model for particular power divergence parameters in terms of power values.
MeSH terms: Cell Count; Interior Design and Furnishings; Models, Statistical; Chi-Square Distribution
This study involves testing the equality of several normal means under unequal variances, which is the setup of one-way analysis of variances (one-way ANOVA). Several tests are available in the literature, however, most of them perform poorly in terms of type I error rate under unequal variances. In fact, Type I errors can be highly inflated for some of the commonly used tests, a serious issue that seems to have been overlooked. Even though several tests have been proposed to overcome the problem, most of them show difficulty in calculation. Accordingly, the test for ANOVA with estimation of parameters using Bayesian approach is proposed as an alternative to such tests. The proposed test is compared with four existing tests such as the original test, James’s test, Welch’s test and the parametric bootstrap (PB) test. Type I error rates and powers of the tests are evaluated using Monte Carlo simulation. Our results indicated that the performance of the proposed test is superior to the original test and is comparable to James’s test, Welch’s test and the PB test, controlling Type I error rate quite well and showing high power of the test. Our study suggested that the proposed test has high performance and should be used as an alternative to the four existing tests due to its simple formula.
This study was concerned with shape preserving interpolation of 2D data. A piecewise C1 univariate rational quadratic trigonometric spline including three positive parameters was devised to produce a shaped interpolant for given shaped data. Positive and monotone curve interpolation schemes were presented to sustain the respective shape features of data. Each scheme was tested for plentiful shaped data sets to substantiate the assertion made in their construction. Moreover, these schemes were compared with conventional shape preserving rational quadratic splines to demonstrate the usefulness of their construction.
The first-principles calculations were performed to investigate the structural, elastic, mechanical and electronic properties of α-Al2O3 at applied pressure up to 50 GPa. The obtained ground state properties were in agreement with previous experimental and theoretical data. The elastic constants, bulk modulus, shear modulus, Young’s modulus and anisotropy have been calculated as pressure increased. It was found that there was a brittle-ductile transition at about 23.2 GPa. The increasing ratio Ba /Bc with pressure indicates the weakening chemical bonding and the increasing anisotropy in this compound. The electronic structures were also calculated, which shows that band gaps increase monotonically. The population analysis showed the charge transfer was mainly between Al-3s and O-2p as pressure increased.
The main objective of this work was to investigate the influence of waterborne epoxy resin emulsion (WER) on the physical properties of oil well cement slurries. Cement slurries containing 5%, 10% and 15% of WER bwoc were compared with WER-free slurries. The rheological behavior was carried out according to API standard. Uniaxial compressive strength and shear bond strength of cement stone were evaluated at the ages of 24, 48 and 72 h. The experimental results illustrate that the addition of WER does not alter the rheological behavior. The addition of WER has increased the shear bond strength almost 52% at 24 h of aging for 10% WER bwoc when compared with unmodified slurry. The enhancement on shear bond strength was attributed to the mechanical anchoring and resin film forming at the interface
MeSH terms: Dental Cements; Dental Cementum; Epoxy Resins; Glass Ionomer Cements; Compressive Strength; Oil and Gas Fields
Various factors may contribute to adverse pregnancy outcomes; either maternal or foetal outcomes. This study aimed was
to determine the association between advanced maternal age and adverse pregnancy outcomes. This is a cross sectional
study. Data were collected from the birth records from January 1st 2012 until December 31st 2012 in Muar District.
Descriptive and multiple logistic regression analyses were done and the results were presented as adjusted odds ratio
(aOR) with p-value <0.05. The proportion of birth in Muar district, Johor was 14.8% among mothers aged 35 years
and older and 85.2% among mothers aged 20 to 34 years. Advanced maternal age was associated with pregnancyinduced
hypertension (aOR: 5.00; 95%CI: 1.95-12.65), gestational diabetes mellitus (aOR: 2.32; 95%CI: 1.35-4.00)
and Caesarean section (aOR: 2.21; 95%CI: 1.53-3.19). Anaemia was negatively associated with advanced maternal
age (aOR: 0.50; 95%CI: 0.32-0.78). No significant association was found between advanced maternal age and adverse
foetal outcomes. In view of the findings, special attention should be paid to the antenatal mothers aged 35 years and
older, even to those without any pre-existing medical problems.
Although more Malaysians are taking part in International Multisport Games, these athletes well-being at such events have not been fully explored. The purpose of this study was to examine the pattern of injury and illness among Malaysian athletes during the XVII Asian Games 2014. Clinical and socio-demographic information of athletes diagnosed with injury or illness during the centralised training camp and at the Games were recorded in a standardised report form. Throughout the study period, 83 injuries and 64 illnesses were recorded from 276 athletes. Muscle strains and tears were the most common injury followed by ligamentous injury and soft tissues contusion. The number of injuries was highest among badminton players followed by hockey and rugby. Significantly higher incidence of injuries was observed among men than women hockey players. Athletes in individual events had higher proportion of more severe injury than those in team events. Respiratory tract infection was the most frequent illness diagnosed among athletes. Most injuries and illnesses diagnosed among athletes were minor and did not result in time away from participation. The incidence of injuries and illnesses among Malaysian athletes at the XVII Asian Games were comparable with those reported by previous authors. Injury and illness rate were influenced by gender and sports. Fortunately, majority of injuries and illnesses were minor and did not prevent athletes from participation.
High sensitivity signal detection for a sparse temporal sampling (STS) functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) is compensated by the increase in the number of scans (Ns) and consequently the scan time. A long scan time would result in fatigue and restlessness in participants, while a short scan time is undesirable for an STS-fMRI due to insufficient Ns for averaging. The purpose of this study was to determine the Ns practically sufficient for a sparse fMRI study. Eighteen participants were presented with white noise during a sparse fMRI scan. The height extent of activation was determined via t statistics and region of interest (ROI) based percentage of signal change (PSC). The t statistics and PSC for Heschl’s gyrus (HG) and superior temporal gyrus (STG) during which the participants listened to the white noise were calculated for different number of scans which were 6, 12, 18, 24, 30 and 36. The t statistics and PSC values calculated for the bilateral HG and STG qualitatively indicated a minimal change over Ns = 12 to 36. Both ROIs showed a consistent common right lateralization of activation for all Ns, indicating the right-hemispheric dominance of auditory cortex in processing white noise stimulus. It was proposed that for a sparse fMRI study, Ns may practically fall between 12 and 36
The present study was aimed at evaluating antihyperglycemic and antihyperlipidemic activity of nuciferin and
norcoclaurine constituents of N. nucifera seeds, a well-known medicinal plant. The alloxan (100 mg/kg b.w) induced
diabetic rats (200-250 g) were divided into seven groups (n = 6). Group I; normal control, Group II; diabetic control,
Group III; standard, Group lV-VII were fed with methanolic crude extracts (100, 200 mg/kg), nuciferin and norcoclaurine
(10 mg/kg b.w.), received for 15 days in dose dependent manner. The study included different parameters; examination of
oral glucose, fasting blood glucose, serum lipid profile and checking for body weight changes. In oral glucose examination,
within 60 and 80 min of treatment, extracts, nuciferin and norcoclaurine significantly reduced blood glucose (p<0.05)
and restored body weight in diabetic rats. Alloxan- induced diabetic rats showed 30-50% reduction of blood glucose
level (p<0.05) and recovered 5-20% body weight at day 15 after ingestion of crude extracts (100-200 mg/kg b.w.); and
nuciferin and norcoclaurine (each at 10 mg/kg b.w.). It also recovered significantly elevated biochemical parameters such
as triglycerides (TG), low density lipoprotein (LDL), high density lipoprotein (HDL), total cholesterol (TC), serum urea and
creatinine. Our findings indicated that N. nucifera seeds possess significant antihyperglycemic and antihyperlipidemic
activity in diabetic rats.
Boron (B) is a mineral considered essential for improving sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.) resistance to drought. B supplements (0, 15-, 30- and 45 mg L-1) under well-watered and variable water deficit levels (64 and 53 mm irrigation depths) were evaluated for their effects on growth, oil quality and water use efficiency (WUE) in a field study for two consecutive years (i.e. 2011 and 2012). The duration of 50% inflorescence emergence, 50% flowering and 50% maturity stages were reduced with increasing moisture stress. All B application rates improved sunflower growth compared to no B control treatment. The moisture deficit treatments of 64 and 53 mm irrigation depths significantly (p<0.05) reduced the yield-related components. Achenes/head, achenes weight and achene yield under water stress conditions were considerably improved by foliar application of B at 30 mg L-1. An increase in protein contents and a decrease in oil contents were observed with B foliar application under moisture deficit treatments. Foliar application of B (30 mg L-1) on water stressed plants also resulted in increased WUE. The highest net benefits were achieved with B concentration of 30 mg L-1 under well-watered and mild deficit water level of 64 mm irrigation depth. The highest application rate of B (45 mg L-1) gave the best results at the most severe water deficit level. In conclusion, the B rates of 30 and 41 mg L-1 performed best for improving drought tolerance in terms of higher sunflower productivity under mild and higher water deficit conditions
MeSH terms: Body Weight; Boron; Dehydration; Helianthus; Minerals; Water; Dietary Supplements; Droughts; Inflorescence; Water Wells
This study evaluates the current environmental influences on fish assemblages of the upper Sungai Pelus, Kuala Kangsar, Perak. Fish samplings and habitat characterizations were conducted at three significant different months, which were on dry (June 2014), wet (August 2014) and moderately wet seasons (April 2015). A total of 510 individual fish were collected from the study, which consist of four orders, nine families, 20 genus and 21 species of fishes. Cyprinidae was the biggest family, followed by Bagridae, Balitoridae and Sisoridae. Neolissochilus hexagonolepis was the only species documented under the nearly threatened list, even their individual number and occurrences were the highest recorded. The readings of environmental variables, such as water temperature, pH, conductivity, dissolved oxygen, total dissolved solids, biological oxygen demand and total suspended solids were regarded as normal for upper river area. However, the water turbidity and chemical oxygen demand (COD) were quite high, which we believed was due to seasonal variation and current anthropogenic activities of the nearby river area. Canonical correspondence analysis showed that the water conductivity, river width, COD and water velocity were the main factors in influencing the fish assemblages of this upper Sungai Pelus. The findings can be utilized as a guideline to manage, protect and conserve this upper river area in the near future.
In this study, the adsorption efficiency of methyl violet (MV) dye onto Ce0.3Al0.7 and Ce0.3Al0.7Agx (x = 0.1, 0.3 & 0.5) mixed oxides was investigated. The properties of mixed oxide were determined by X-ray diffraction (XRD), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX), N2 adsorption-desorption isotherm, diffuse reflectance UV-vis spectroscopy (UV-vis DRS) and X-ray absorption near edge structure (XANES). Characterization showed that synthesized mixed oxide with fluorite has a pure cubic structure of a mesoporous nature and a small grain size with rough surface. Batch adsorption experiments were used to study parameters including contact time and initial dye concentration. The results showed that these parameters affected the degree of MV dye adsorption. The dye adsorption of mixed oxides attained equilibrium at 120 min. The equilibrium adsorption data were analyzed using Langmuir, Freundlich and Temkin isotherms. The adsorption behavior of MV dye onto Ce0.3Al0.7 was found to follow the Langmuir isotherm (R2 = 0.9951), providing a maximum monolayer adsorptive capacity of 2.35 mg/g. Alternatively, the adsorption of MV dye onto Ce0.3Al0.7Ag0.1 (R2 = 0.7839), Ce0.3Al0.7Ag0.3 (R2 = 0.9301) and Ce0.3Al0.7Ag0.5 (R2 = 0.9396) followed the Freundlich isotherm. The possible adsorption mechanisms of MV dyes onto the Ce0.3Al0.7 and Ce0.3Al0.7Agx were also discussed.
Polyhydroxybutyrate (PHB) otherwise known as bioplastics are biodegradable materials that are accumulated in various microorganisms to serve as carbon and energy reservoirs and regarded as an attractive alternative to petroleum-derived plastics. Although research has been conducted on isolation of PHB-producing microorganisms from different ecological environments, few studies have been carried out on isolation of potential PHB-producing microorganisms from rhizosphere environment of groundnut plants, Arachis hypogaea which can be regarded as a good environment for the isolation of potential PHB-producing microorganisms. In the present study, a total of twenty-one (21) bacterial strains were primarily screened and isolated from rhizosphere soil of a groundnut plant. Four bacterial isolates with maximum PHB-producing potential upon screening using submerged fermentation were selected for further studies. The fermentation pattern of PHB production was studied using different nutrient sources. The influence of agitation on PHB production was also studied. Mannitol stimulated maximum (6.076a mg/mL) PHB production by Bacillus sp. 1; KNO3 used as a limiting nutrient induced best (5.728a mg/mL) PHB production by Citrobacter sp. and MgSO4.7H2O supported maximum (5.972a mg/mL) PHB production in Enterococcus sp. A low agitation speed of 150 rpm was found to support best (5.802a mg/mL) PHB production by Bacillus sp.1. Findings from this study indicated that the isolated bacterial strains have high PHB- producing potential. The need to explore other environment harbouring microbial strains with high PHB-producing potential is paramount to the discovery of bioplastics with improved properties for potential industrial applications.
The transesterification of Thevetia peruviana seed oil with dimethyl carbonate (DMC) for preparing biodiesel has been studied using as an active catalyst potassium-methoxide (KOCH3). The effects of reaction conditions: Molar ratio of dimethyl carbonate to Thevetia peruviana seed oil, catalyst concentration, reaction time and agitation speed on dimethyl esters (DMC-Tp-BioDs) yield were investigated. The highest DMC-Tp-BioDs yield could reach 97.1% at refluxing temperature for 90 min with molar ratio of DMC-to-oil 5:1 and 2.0% w/w KOCH3 (based on oil weight). The fuel properties of the produced DMC-Tp-BioDs were compared with the ASTM D6751-02 biodiesel standard.
A simple and fast dispersive liquid-liquid microextraction (DLLME) technique using organic solvent lighter than water has been developed for the extraction of selected polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in green tea, chrysanthemum tea and coffee beverage. The 1-octanol and acetonitrile were pre-mixed and injected into the sample solution. After dispersing, the cloudy solution was subjected to centrifugation to separate the solution into 2 phases, where the micro-droplet of 1-octanol was clearly floated on the top layer. The 1-octanol extract was then diluted and injected into high performance liquid chromatography-fluorescence for the quantitative analysis. The technique offered rapid analysis as the 1-octanol was homogeneously dispersed in the sample solution thus speeding the analytes diffusion. Under the optimized extraction conditions, the technique achieved trace detection limits in the range of 0.001 to 0.3 μgL-1 for the targeted analytes, namely phenanthrene, fluoranthene and benzo[a]pyrene. The method was successfully applied to the spiked green tea, chrysanthemum tea and coffee beverage samples with good average relative recoveries obtained in the range of 86.7 to 103.0%. The utilization of low density organic solvent as extraction solvent has allowed for easier operation and eliminated the use of hazardous halogenated solvent that is commonly applied in DLLME.
In this study, the antimicrobial, antioxidant, phytotoxic and phytochemical properties of defatted seeds of Jatropha curcas were evaluated. A crude methanolic extract of defatted seeds was tested against three fungal strains - Aspergillus niger, Aspergillus flavus and Aspergillus fumigatus - and five bacteria: Escherichia coli and Klebsiella pneumoniae (Gram negative) and Micrococcus luteus, Bacillus subtilis and Staphylococcus aureus (Gram positive). The methanolic extract was diluted in dimethylsulfoxide to final concentrations of 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 mg/10 mL. The largest zones of inhibition against K. pneumoniae, M. luteus and B. subtilis were achieved using the concentration of 5 mg/10 mL. The concentration of 1 mg/10 mL was most effective against S. aureus and E. coli. In a 1, 1-diphenyl-2-picrylahydrazyl (DPPH) radical scavenging assay, the 5 mg/10 mL concentration of the Jatropha seed extract showed the strongest activity. Higher concentrations of the Jatropha seed extract (10 mg/50 mL and 5 mg/50 mL) significantly inhibited the germination of radish seeds and had negative effects on radish seedling relative water content, shoot length, root length, seedling fresh weight and seedling dry weight (p<0.05). Phytochemical analyses of the defatted seeds detected alkaloids (7.3%), flavonoids (0.39%) and soluble phenolics (mg gallic acid equivalents/g extract). Based on these results, it was inferred that J. curcas seeds contain active ingredients that are effective against pathogenic microbes and therefore could be used to formulate drugs to treat various diseases.