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  1. Chou KW, Norli I, Anees A
    Bioresour Technol, 2010 Nov;101(22):8616-22.
    PMID: 20638277 DOI: 10.1016/j.biortech.2010.06.101
    In this study, palm oil mill effluent (POME) was solubilized by batch thermo-alkaline pre-treatments. A three-factor central composite design (CCD) was applied to identify the optimum COD solubilization condition. The individual and interactive effects of three factors, temperature, NaOH concentration and reaction time, on solubilization of POME were evaluated by employing response surface methodology (RSM). The experimental results showed that temperature, NaOH concentration and reaction time all had an individual significant effect on the solubilization of POME. But these three factors were independent, or there was insignificant interaction on the response. The maximum COD solubilization of 82.63% was estimated under the optimum condition at 32.5 degrees C, 8.83g/L of NaOH and 41.23h reaction time. The confirmation experiment of the predicted optimum conditions verified that the RSM with the central composite design was useful for optimizing the solubilization of POME.
  2. Ho YC, Norli I, Alkarkhi AF, Morad N
    Water Sci Technol, 2009;60(3):771-81.
    PMID: 19657173 DOI: 10.2166/wst.2009.303
    The performance of pectin in turbidity reduction and the optimum condition were determined using Response Surface Methodology (RSM). The effect of pH, cation's concentration, and pectin's dosage on flocculating activity and turbidity reduction was investigated at three levels and optimized by using Box-Behnken Design (BBD). Coagulation and flocculation process were assessed with a standard jar test procedure with rapid and slow mixing of a kaolin suspension (aluminium silicate), at 150 rpm and 30 rpm, respectively, in which a cation e.g. Al(3+), acts as coagulant, and pectin acts as the flocculant. In this research, all factors exhibited significant effect on flocculating activity and turbidity reduction. The experimental data and model predictions well agreed. From the 3D response surface graph, maximum flocculating activity and turbidity reduction are in the region of pH greater than 3, cation concentration greater than 0.5 mM, and pectin dosage greater than 20 mg/L, using synthetic turbid wastewater within the range. The flocculating activity for pectin and turbidity reduction in wastewater is at 99%.
  3. Ho YC, Norli I, Alkarkhi AF, Morad N
    Bioresour Technol, 2010 Feb;101(4):1166-74.
    PMID: 19854044 DOI: 10.1016/j.biortech.2009.09.064
    Polyacrylamide (PAM), a commonly used organic synthetic flocculant, is known to have high reduction in turbidity treatment. However, PAM is not readily degradable. In this paper, pectin as a biopolymeric flocculant is used. The objectives are (i) to determine the characteristics of both flocculants (ii) to optimize the treatment processes of both flocculants in synthetic turbid waste water. The results obtained indicated that pectin has a lower average molecular weight at 1.63 x 10(5) and PAM at 6.00 x 10(7). However, the thermal degradation results showed that the onset temperature for pectin is at 165.58 degrees C, while the highest onset temperature obtained for PAM is at 235.39 degrees C. The optimum treatment conditions for the biopolymeric flocculant for flocculating activity was at pH 3, cation concentration at 0.55 mM, and pectin concentration at 3 mg/L. In contrast, PAM was at pH 4, cation concentration >0.05 mM and PAM concentration between 13 and 30 mg/L.
  4. Muthuraman G, Teng TT, Leh CP, Norli I
    J Hazard Mater, 2009 Apr 15;163(1):363-9.
    PMID: 18782652 DOI: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2008.06.122
    Liquid-liquid extraction (LLE) of methylene blue (MB) from industrial wastewater using benzoic acid (extractant) in xylene has been studied at 27 degrees C. The extraction of the dye increased with increasing extractant concentration. The extraction abilities have been studied on benzoic acid concentration in the range of 0.36-5.8x10(-2) M. The distribution ratio of the dye is reasonably high (D=49.5) even in the presence of inorganic salts. Irrespective of the concentration of dye, extraction under optimal conditions was 90-99% after 15 min of phase separation. The extracted dye in the organic phase can be back extracted into sulphuric acid solution. The resultant recovered organic phase can be reused in succeeding extraction of dye with the yield ranging from 99 to 87% after 15 times reused, depending on the concentration of the initial feed solution. Experimental parameters examined were benzoic acid concentration, effect of diluent, effect of pH, effect of initial dye concentration, effect of equilibration time, various stripping agents, aqueous to organic phase ratio in extraction, organic to aqueous phase ratio in stripping and reusability of solvent.
  5. Ho YC, Norli I, Alkarkhi AF, Morad N
    J Water Health, 2015 Jun;13(2):489-99.
    PMID: 26042980 DOI: 10.2166/wh.2014.100
    In view of green developments in water treatment, plant-based flocculants have become the focus due to their safety, degradation and renewable properties. In addition, cost and energy-saving processes are preferable. In this study, malva nut gum (MNG), a new plant-based flocculant, and its composite with Fe in water treatment using single mode mixing are demonstrated. The result presents a simplified extraction of the MNG process. MNG has a high molecular weight of 2.3 × 10⁵ kDa and a high negative charge of -58.7 mV. From the results, it is a strong anionic flocculant. Moreover, it is observed to have a branch-like surface structure. Therefore, it conforms to the surface of particles well and exhibits good performance in water treatment. In water treatment, the Fe-MNG composite treats water at pH 3.01 and requires a low concentration of Fe and MNG of 0.08 and 0.06 mg/L, respectively, when added to the system. It is concluded that for a single-stage flocculation process, physico-chemical properties such as molecular weight, charge of polymer, surface morphology, pH, concentration of cation and concentration of biopolymeric flocculant affect the flocculating performance.
  6. Choong YY, Norli I, Abdullah AZ, Yhaya MF
    Bioresour Technol, 2016 Jun;209:369-79.
    PMID: 27005788 DOI: 10.1016/j.biortech.2016.03.028
    This paper critically reviews the impacts of supplementing trace elements on the anaerobic digestion performance. The in-depth knowledge of trace elements as micronutrients and metalloenzyme components justifies trace element supplementation into the anaerobic digestion system. Most of the earlier studies reported that trace elements addition at (sub)optimum dosages had positive impacts mainly longer term on digester stability with greater organic matter degradation, low volatile fatty acids (VFA) concentration and higher biogas production. However, these positive impacts and element requirements are not fully understood, they are explained on a case to case basis because of the great variance of the anaerobic digestion operation. Iron (Fe), nickel (Ni) and cobalt (Co) are the most studied and desirable elements. The right combination of multi-elements supplementation can have greater positive impact. This measure is highly recommended, especially for the mono-digestion of micronutrient-deficient substrates. The future research should consider the aspect of trace element bioavailability.
  7. Al-Gheethi AA, Mohamed RM, Efaq AN, Norli I, Abd Halid A, Amir HK, et al.
    J Water Health, 2016 Oct;14(5):780-795.
    PMID: 27740544
    The study probed into reducing faecal indicators and pathogenic bacteria, heavy metals and β-lactam antibiotics, from four types of secondary effluents by bioaugmentation process, which was conducted with Bacillus subtilis strain at 45 °C. As a result, faecal indicators and pathogenic bacteria were reduced due to the effect of thermal treatment process (45 °C), while the removal of heavy metals and β-lactam antibiotics was performed through the functions of bioaccumulation and biodegradation processes of B. subtilis. Faecal coliform met the guidelines outlined by WHO and US EPA standards after 4 and 16 days, respectively. Salmonella spp. and Staphylococcus aureus were reduced to below the detection limits without renewed growth in the final effluents determined by using a culture-based method. Furthermore, 13.5% and 56.1% of cephalexin had been removed, respectively, from secondary effluents containing 1 g of cephalexin L(-1) (secondary effluent 3), as well as 1 g of cephalexin L(-1) and 10 mg of Ni(2+) L(-1) (secondary effluent 4) after 16 days. The treatment process, eventually, successfully removed 96.6% and 66.3% of Ni(2+) ions from the secondary effluents containing 10 mg of Ni(2+) L(-1) (secondary effluent 2) and E4, respectively. The bioaugmentation process improved the quality of secondary effluents.
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