Displaying publications 1 - 20 of 705 in total

  1. Mohd. Sanusi Che Kadir, Jamaliah Md. Jahim, Nurina Anuar, Mohd. Sobri Takrif, Zahira Yaakub
    In this study, an anaerobic mesophilic bacterial strain, namely Clostridium butyricum KBH1, was isolated from a natural source. This strain grew well and produced biogas with an average hydrogen concentration of 60% (v/v) in the Reinforced Clostridial Media (RCM). To study the basic nutrient requirements, three main nutrients namely peptone (Pep), yeast extracts (Yes) and glucose (Glu) were chosen as factors, using an experimental design. The experiments were run according to 23 Full Factorial Design, followed by the Response Surface Method (RSM). The fermentation was performed in 30 ml serum bottles with 20 ml working volume in a sterile and anaerobic condition at 37°C with 5% inoculums. The results from the Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) for the factorial design showed that all the three factors had significantly affected the gas production by the C. butyricum. The response surface plot of the gas production by C. butyricum showed that the gas production could be enhanced by increasing peptone and yeast extract concentrations up to 15 g/l and 24 g/l respectively, without showing any substrate inhibition. Meanwhile, the glucose concentration showed an optimum at the middle point (8 g/l) with possible substrate inhibition at a high concentration (12 g/l). The total biogas production could be correlated to the three factors, using the quadratic equation: Gas =0.17 + 7.11Glu - 0.02Pep + 0.77Yes - 0.53Glu2 + 0.09Glu*Pep. The experimental results showed that the strain could grow well in substrate with high organic nitrogen content such as POME and might be not suitable for substrate with high sugar content due to substrate inhibition.
  2. Zurina Zainal Abidin, Zalini Yunus, Markx, Gerard H.
    The dielectrophoretic (DEP) separation of cell, using microelectrodes structure, has been limited to small scale due to size of the substrate. This work was carried out to extend the capability of microelectrodes system by orientating the microelectrodes in three dimensions (3-D) for larger scale dielectrophoretic separation of microorganism. The designed 3-D separation chamber consists of microelectrodes on two opposing walls. Based on the FEMLAB simulation, the electric field was seen to be generated across the chamber, rather than between adjacent electrodes in the same plane like in the small scale system. This configuration led to a stronger electric field in the bulk medium. The experimental results showed that the 3-D microelectrodes chamber behaved similar to the system with microelectrodes on one wall. The effects of the main parameters such as voltage, frequency and flow rates were similar to that of the systems with all the electrodes on one wall, but on the overall, capture more cells. A gap size between 250 – 500 μm resulted in an electric field which is strong enough to hold cells while giving a reasonable cross sectional area at the same time. Although there is some improvement achieved by 3-D system, it is still not very much, as compared to the small scale system.
  3. Loh, Kok Fook, Ponusamy, Ragu, Shattri Mansor, Jamil Ismail
    Malaysia is in the process of modernizing its oil palm plantation management, by implementing geo-information technologies which include Remote Sensing (RS), Geographic Information System (GIS), and Spatial Decision Support System (DSS). Agencies with large oil palm plantations such as the Federal Land Development Authority (FELDA), Federal Land Consolidation and Rehabilitation Authority (FELCRA), Guthrie Sdn. Bhd., and Golden Hope Sdn. Bhd. have already incorporated GIS in their plantation management, with limited use of RS and DSS. In 2005, FELCRA, Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) and Espatial Resources Sdn. Bhd. (ESR) collaborated in a research project to explore the potentials of geo-informatics for oil palm plantation management. The research was conducted in FELCRA located in Seberang Perak Oil Palm Scheme. In that research, a tool integrating RS, GIS and Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP) was developed to support decision making for replanting of the existing old palms. RS was used to extract productive stand per hectare; AHP was used to compute the criteria weights for the development of a suitable model; and GIS was used for spatial modelling so as to generate the decision support layer for replanting. This paper highlights the approach adopted in developing the tool with special emphasis on the AHP computation.
  4. Mohammed, Thamer Ahmed, Abdul Halim Ghazali
    In Malaysia, the use of groundwater can help to meet the increasing water demand. The utilization of the aquifers is currently contributing in water supplies, particularly for the northern states. In this study, quantitative and qualitative assessments were carried out for the groundwater exploitation in the states of Kelantan, Melaka, Terengganu and Perak. The relevant data was acquired from the Department of Mineral and Geoscience, Malaysia. The quantitative assessment mainly included the determination of the use to yield ratio (UTY). The formula was proposed to determine the UTY ratio for aquifers in Malaysia. The proposed formula was applied to determine the maximum UTY ratios for the aquifers located in the states of Kelantan, Melaka, and Terengganu, and were found to be 4.2, 5.2 and 0.6, respectively. This indicated that exploitation of groundwater was beyond the safe limit in the states of Kelantan and Melaka. The qualitative assessment showed that the groundwater is slightly acidic. In addition, the concentrations of iron and manganese were found to be higher than the allowable limits, but the chloride concentration was found within the allowable limit.
  5. Noorzaei, J., Wong, J.N., Thanoon, W.A., Jaafar, M.S.
    Precast concrete technology forms an important part in the drive towards a full implementation of the Industrialized Building System (IBS). The IBS requires building components and their dimensions to be standardized, and preferably cast off site. Slabs are major structural elements in buildings, other than beams and columns. Standardized and optimized slabs can significantly enhance the building industries in achieving the full implementation of the IBS. Nevertheless, this requires computer techniques to achieve standardized and optimized slabs which can satisfy all building design requirements, including the standards of architectural and structural design standards. This study proposed a computer technique which analysed and designed five different types of slabs which will satisfy all the requirements in design. The most commonly used slabs included in this study were the solid one way, solid two way, ribbed, voided and composite slabs. The computer techniques enable the design of the most optimized sections for any of the slab types under any loading and span conditions. The computer technique also provides details for the reinforcements required for the slabs.
  6. Mashitah, M.D., Masitah, H., Ramachandran, K.B.
    Streptococcus zooepidemicus (SZ) is an aerotolerant bacteria and its ability to survive under reactive oxidant raises the question of the existence of a defense system against oxidative stress. As a characteristic of lactic acid bacteria, Streptococcus lacks an ordinary anti-oxidative stress enzyme, catalases and an electron transport chain. Whether this bacterium resists oxidative stress prior to an exposure to a higher level of an oxidizing agent H2O2 in hyaluronic acid fermentation is not known. This paper describes that Streptococcus cells, once treated with lower concentrations of H2O2 (i.e. 0.25, 0.50 and 1.0 mM) at least, were prepared for a subsequent higher concentrations of H2O2 such as 20.5 and 100 mM. At low concentrations (i.e. 0.25, 0.50 and 1.0 mM), H2O2 was found to act as a stimulant for HA synthesis, but it became toxic if presented at a very high level (100 mM H2O2). The highest HA yield to glucose consumed (YHAtotal/glu) was 0.017 gg-1 for the cells pre-treated with 0 mM of H2O2, and then exposed to 20.5 mM H2O2. Thus, this implied that this bacteria might possess a defense mechanism against oxidative stress and that this system was inducible.
  7. Ngoh, Gek Cheng, Masitah Hasan, Kumoro, Andri Chahyo, Chew, Fui Ling, Tham, Margaret
    The production of ethanol, from glucose in batch and fed batch culture, was investigated. In the fed batch culture, the glucose feeding was added into the culture at 16th hour of fermentation. The effects of different glucose concentration feeding rates on ethanol fermentation were investigated for fed batch culture. The 2gL-1hr-1 glucose concentration feeding rate was found to give higher ethanol yield (2.47 g ethanol g glucose-1), with respect to substrate consumed as compared to 8 gL-1hr-1 (0.23 g ethanol g glucose-1) and 4 gL-1hr-1 (0.20 g ethanol g glucose-1). The ethanol yield with respect to substrate consumed obtained in batch culture was 0.81 g ethanol g glucose-1. The fed batch culture at 2 gL-1hr-1 glucose concentration feeding rate was proven to be a better fermentation system than the batch culture. The specific growth rate, specific glucose consumption rate and specific ethanol production rate for the fed batch fermentation, at 2 gL-1hr-1 glucose concentration feeding rate, were 0.065 hr-1, 1.20 hr-1 and 0.0009 hr-1, respectively.
  8. Krisnaiah, Duduku, Yan, Yan Farm, Awang Bono, Noor Maizura Ismail, Lee, Muei Chng
    Synthesis of carboxymethylcellulose (CMC) from natural cellulose is an important industrial process. The effect of process parameters on the synthesis process is important information for the efficiency improvement of production process. Most of the previous studies on the effect of process parameters
    on the synthesis of CMC are based on the One-Factor-At-Time (OFAT); therefore, in this work, the response surface methodology (RSM) was used. Here, the cellulose was converted to CMC through
    carboxymethylation process using a technique of William etherification in heterogeneous system. The process parameters studied include the solvent ratio, reaction temperature and reactant ratio (molar ratio of NaOH to SMCA). Meanwhile, the analysis and optimization of the responses of the process, degree of substitution (DS) and yield were also performed using the response surface methodology. The validity of the synthesis process was identified by the determination of CMC spectrum using the fast Fourier infrared spectrometer (FTIR). The analysis of the results shows that carboxymethylation is strongly affected by combination of process parameters studied. The results obtained also show that the optimum responses, degree of substitution (DS) is 0.87 and yield is 1.80, whereas the optimum process parameters, solvent ratio is 0.70v/v, reaction temperature at 56.03oC, and molar ratio of NaOH to SMCA at 1.00mol/mol. These findings conclude that the DS and yield of carboxymethylation of cellulose are strongly affected by the combination of the process parameters.
  9. Nozieana Khairuddin, Ida Idayu Muhamad
    An antimicrobial (AM) Active Packaging can be made by incorporating and immobilizing suitable AM agents into food package matrices and applying a bio switch concept. A starchbased film was prepared and incorporated with an antimicrobial agent, i.e. lysozyme with EDTA as a chelating agent. This film was then inoculated with the bacteria Escherichia coli and Bacillus subtilis to carry out the microbial contamination study. The inhibition of both E. coli and B. subtilis by the AM film was clearly observed as a clear zone formation in the culture agar test. The film appearance showed that lysozymes could give a better inhibition to the growth of E. coli and to B. subtilis, at a satisfying inhibition rate. From the broth test, the decreased in the optical densities were found to be 65.83% and 91.30%, suggesting an effective growth inhibition of E. coli and B. subtilis, respectively. Physically, the film which was incorporated with lysozymes was found to be slightly different from the control film. The moisture content of the film, with lysozymes, was found to be below 10.5%, as compared to the control, after 24 hours of formation in the storage at ambient temperature.
  10. Hambali, A., Sapuan, S.M., Ismail, N., Nukman, Y., Abdul Karim, M.S.
    Nowadays, Concurrent Engineering (CE) is becoming more important as companies compete in the worldwide market. Reduced time in product development process, higher product quality, lower cost in manufacturing process and fulfilment of customers’ requirements are the key factors to determine the success of a company. To produce excellent products, the concept of Concurrent Engineering must be implemented. Concurrent Engineering is a systematic approach which can be achieved when all design activities are integrated and executed in a parallel manner. The CE approach has radically changed the method used in product development process in many companies. Thus, this paper reviews the basic principles and tools of Concurrent Engineering and discusses how to employ them. Similarly, to ensure a product development process in the CE environment to run smoothly and efficiently, some modifications of the existing product development processes are proposed; these should start from market investigation to detail design.
  11. Zainal Abidin Talib, Liew, Josephine Ying Chyi, Zulkarnain Zainal, Mahmood Mat Yunus, W., Lim, Kean Pah, Wan M. Daud, Wan Yusoff, et al.
    This studies are directed towards measuring the electrical conductivity of the (CuSe)1-xSex metal chalcogenide semi-conductor composites, with different stoichiometric compositions of Se (x = 0, 0.2, 0.4, 0.5, 0.6, 0.8,1.0) in bulk form. The electrical conductivity measurement was carried out at room temperature, using the parallel plate technique. The (CuSe)1-xSex composites were prepared using solid state reaction, by varying the ratio of CuSe:Se, in the reaction mixture. The electrical conductivity of (CuSe)1-xSex was determined to be in the range of 1.17 x 10-8 to 1.02 x 10-1 S/cm. The finding indicated that the electrical conductivity value tended to decrease as the concentration of Se increased. The effect of the concentration of Se, on electrical conductivity of (CuSe)1-xSex composites, is discussed in this paper.
  12. Mazni Mustafa, W. Mohamad Daud W. Yusoff, Zainal Abidin Talib, Abdul Halim Shaari, Primus, Walter Charles
    Ca0.5Sr0.5Cu3Ti4O12 (CSCTO) ceramic oxide was prepared using solid state reaction technique. Impedance measurement was done using High Dielectric Resolution Analyzer (Novocontrol Novotherm) from 30 oC to 250 oC, in the frequency range of 10-2 to 106 Hz. X-ray diffraction pattern showed a single phase with a cubic structure. In the complex impedance plot, three semi-circles were observed; these represented the grain, grain boundary and electrode effect responses. The semi-circles were fitted using a series network of three parallel RC circuits. The resistance was found to increase with the decreasing temperature. The activation energies, Ea, obtained from the Arrhenius plots of CSCTO, were 0.31 eV and 0.73 eV for grain and grain boundary conductivity, respectively. The value of the grain energy was revealed as smaller than the grain boundary energy, due to the semi-conducting grain and the insulating grain boundary characteristic (Sinclair et al., 2002).
  13. Nor Azah Yusof, Zainab Omar
    In this study, a simple, selective and sensitive method, for spectrophotometric determination of As(III) with gallocyanine as the sensitive reagent was developed. The wavelength of an analytical measurement, for the determination of As (III), using gallocyanine was at 630 nm with an optimum response at pH 2. The RSD for the reproducibility of 100 ppm As (III) was 2.3%. The LOD was 0.04 ppm with linear dynamic range in As(III) concentration of 0.2 - 1.5 ppm. The developed method has been validated against Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometry (AAS). The interference study of several metal ions was carried out and it revealed that that Mn (II) ion was interfered the most.
  14. Yap, C.K., Ismail, A., Tan, S.G.
    The concentrations of cadmium, copper, zinc and lead, in the total soft tissues of green-lipped mussel Perna viridis of a wide range of sizes (2-11 cm), were determined from a population at Pasir Panjang. The metal contents (μg per individual) and concentrations (μg per g) of cadmium, lead, copper and zinc were studied in P. viridis to find the relationships with body sizes. Smaller and younger mussels showed higher concentrations (μg per g) of Cd, Pb and Zn than the larger and older ones. The results of the present study showed that the plotting of the metal content, against dry body flesh weight on a double logarithmic basis, gave good positive straight lines; this observation is in agreement with Boyden’s formula (1977). This indicated that P. viridis showed a different physiological strategy for each metal being studied, which is related to age.
  15. Rosnah Shamsudin, Wan Ramli Wan Daud, Mohd Sobri Takrif, Osman Hassan
    The physico-mechanical properties data of fruits are important in the design of various handling, packing, and storage and transportation system. The physical-mechanical properties of pineapple fruit from the Josapine variety, namely the weight of the fruit (with and without peel), pulp to peel ratio, diameter of the whole fruit (with and without peel), at three different positions along the longitudinal axis of the fruit, length of the fruit (with and without peel) and the length of crown were studied using the standard method at seven stages of maturity during storage at 25°C and 52% (RH). The effect of fruit maturity on the firmness of each fruit at three different locations was measured using a cylindrical die of 6 mm in diameter with the Instron Universal Testing Machine. The results indicated that the average total weight of a single fruit is 886.86 ± 49.67 g. The average pulp to peel ratio is 1.91. The average diameter (with and without peel) was 86.83 ± 5.24 mm and 80.95 ± 4.15 mm (top section), 100.77 ± 3.84 mm and 90.19 ± 3.73 mm (middle section) and 97.17 ± 3.49 mm and 73.30 ± 5.11 mm (bottom section), respectively. The average length of the fruit (with and without peel) was 126.65 mm and 113.64 mm, respectively. The average length of crown was 89.13 mm. The firmness of the fruits was found to decrease with the stage of maturity. These data are important in determining the optimum stage of maturity for fruit processing.
  16. Mohd. Radzi, M.R., Uzir, M.H.
    Biocatalytic reaction is a type of reaction which uses enzyme or whole-cell as a (bio)-catalyst to achieve a desired conversion, under controlled conditions in a bioreactor. Temperature produces opposed effects on enzyme activity and stability, and is therefore a key variable in any biocatalytic processes. An exothermic biocatalytic reaction, in a continuous-stirred-tank reactor (CSTR), was analyzed where dynamic equations (non-linear differential equations) could be derived from the Michaelis-Menten and Arrhenius equations, by performing mass and energy balances on the reactor. In this work, the effects of the different parameters such as dilution rate, proportional control constant and dimensionless total enzyme concentration, on the stability of the system, were studied. The stability of the reaction could be analyzed, based on the ODE (ordinary differential equation), solved using the numerical technique in MATLAB® and the analytical investigation using Mathematica.® The numerical analysis can be carried out by considering the hase-plane behaviour and bifurcation diagrams of the dynamic equations, while the analytical analysis using Mathematica® can be undertaken by evaluating the eigenvalues of the system. In order to model the operational stability of biocatalysts, modulation factors need to be considered so that a proper design of bioreactors can be done. Temperature, as a key variable in such bioprocess systems, can be conveniently optimized through the use of appropriate models.
  17. Tang, S.H., Khaksar, W., Ismail, N.B., Ariffin, M.K.A.
    The ability of a robot to plan its own motion seems pivotal to its autonomy, and that is why the motion planning has become part and parcel of modern intelligent robotics. In this paper, about 100 research are reviewed and briefly described to identify and classify the amount of the existing work for each motion planning approach. Meanwhile, around 200 research were used to determine the percentage of the application of each approach. The paper includes comparative tables and charts showing the application frequency of each approach in the last 30 years. Finally, some open areas and challenging topics are presented based on the reviewed papers.
  18. Morvarid, A.R., Zeenathul, N.A., Tam, Y.J., Zuridah, H., Mohd-Azmi, M.L., Azizon, B.O.
    This study describes expression of HBs Ag in methylotrophic yeast, Pichia Pastoris under alcohol oxidase promoter. A single copy number of HBs Ag gene was transformed into pichia strain of KM 71, a Muts type, by using pA0815 pichia expression vector. The recombinant was cultivated in a shake flask either using methanol or a mixed feed of glycerol -methanol for induction. The HBs Ag gene integrity was justified using direct PCR method. The expressed products in the soluble cell extracts were analyzed by Western blot, SDS page, Bradford assay and ELISA tests. The recombinant HBs Ag was expressed successfully in Pichia pastoris strain KM71 at a high level of HBs Ag protein expression. Thus, an addition of glycerol in the ratio of glycerol per methanol 1/1 (g g-1) consistently produced 2-fold increment in both biomass accumulation and HBs Ag productivity.
  19. Ee, G.C.L., Cheow, Y.L.
    Detail chemical studies on Carcinia maingayi have yielded one xanthone, 1,3,7-trihydroxy-2-(3-methylbut-2-enyl)-xanthone, one benzophenone, isoxanthochymol, one benzoic acid derivative 3,4-dihydroxy-methylbenzoate and two triterpenoids, stigmasterol and sitosterol. Meanwhile, investigations on Carcinia parvifolia have afforded one triterpenoid, a-amyrin and two xanthones, cowanin and rubraxanthone. Their structures were derived based on spectroscopic evidence, mainly ID and 2D NMR spectroscopy. Acetylation reaction was carried out on rubraxanthone to yield triacetate rubraxanthone. It was found that the pure rubraxanthone was strongly active against the larvae of Aedes aegypti with LC50 value of 15.49 {lg/ ml and HL-60 cells line with an IC50 value of 7.5 {lg/ ml.
  20. Ahmed M. Mbarib, Mohammad Hamiruce Marhaban, Abdul Rahman Ramli
    Skin colour is an important visual cue for face detection, face recogmtlon, hand segmentation for gesture analysis and filtering of objectionable images. In this paper, the adaptive skin color detection model is proposed, based on two bivariate normal distribution models of the skin chromatic subspace, and on image segmentation using an automatic and adaptive multi-thresholding technique. Experimental results on images presenting a wide range of variations in lighting condition and background demonstrate the efficiency of the proposed skin-segmentation algorithm.
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