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Journal of Thermal Analysis and Calorimetry
Authors:
L. A. Perez-Maqueda
,
C. Maqueda
,
J. L. Perez-Rodriguez
,
J. Subrt
,
Z. Cerny
, and
V. Balek

Abstract

Acid leaching of vermiculite is an interesting procedure to prepare high surface area porous silica. Thermal behaviour of unground and ground vermiculite leached with HCl solutions has been studied by TG, DTA, ETA and high temperature XRD. Important differences have been observed in the thermal behaviour of unground and ground vermiculite after the acid treatments. Thus, for the acid-treated unground vermiculite, dehydrated vermiculite, enstatite and cristobalite were formed during the heating, while for the acid-treated ground vermiculite only iron oxides and cristobalite phases were observed. Structural modifications due to acid treatment were responsible for changes in the transport properties determined by ETA for the vermiculite samples.

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Bisphenol A (BPA), bisphenol A dimethacrylate (BisDMA) and phthalic acid (PA) endocrine disruptors can migrate from the plastic lining of cans to foods producing serious health problems when they exceed allowable concentration limits for consumption. In this work, a method was assessed for the determination of BPA, BisDMA, and PA in vegetable food cans from Mexico using a food simulant. Those disruptors were determined by HPLC connected to an Evaporative Light Scattering Detector (ELSD), and simultaneous detection by UV-Vis detector was used for validation. The most frequently found disruptor in major concentration was PA over the range of 5.40 to 112.39 μg l−1. The samples analysed did not exceed the migration limit accepted by the US-FDA and US-EPA for bisphenols. Our results showed that HPLC-ELSD produces chromatograms with accurate signals and smaller detection limits than the UV-Vis detector for the substances analysed here.

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Journal of Thermal Analysis and Calorimetry
Authors:
María Villanueva
,
Jorge Proupín
,
José A. Rodríguez-Añón
,
L. Fraga-Grueiro
,
Josefa Salgado
, and
Nieves Barros

Abstract

The rational and sustainable exploitation of natural resources is one the priority objectives of our consumer society as an unavoidable strategy for survival. In previous articles, research group TERBIPROMAT has established the bases for the elaboration of energy maps of forest biomass. With those data, it is possible to classify the species in terms of their energy content and of their possible application as biofuels following European Norm CEN/TS 14961/2005 on solid biofuels. Main forest species used in this study were Populus and Paulownia. These species have a fast growth and produce big amounts of energetic biomass. To complete this study a comparison with autochthonous forest species, Eucalyptus and Pinus, was made. In this study, a thermogravimetric analysis is employed to qualitative study the resistance to thermal degradation of different forest species. These studies complete those made through static bomb calorimetry, elemental analysis, and different mechanical tests trying to get relationships between thermal behaviour and some physical properties.

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Scientometrics
Authors:
J. A. García
,
Rosa Rodriguez-Sánchez
,
J. Fdez-Valdivia
, and
J. Martinez-Baena

Abstract

Here we study the relationship between journal quartile rankings of ISI impact factor (at the 2010) and journal classification in four impact classes, i.e., highest impact, medium highest impact, medium lowest impact, and lowest impact journals in subject category computer science artificial intelligence. To this aim, we use fuzzy maximum likelihood estimation clustering in order to identify groups of journals sharing similar characteristics in a multivariate indicator space. The seven variables used in this analysis are: (1) Scimago Journal Ranking (SJR); (2) H-Index (H); (3) ISI impact factor (IF); (4) 5-Year Impact Factor (5IF); (5) Immediacy Index (II); (6) Eigenfactor Score (ES); and (7) Article Influence Score (AIS). The fuzzy clustering allows impact classes to overlap, thereby accommodating for uncertainty related to the confusion about the impact class attribution for a journal and vagueness in impact classes definition. This paper demonstrates the complex relationship between quartiles of ISI impact factor and journal impact classes in the multivariate indicator space. And that several indicators should be used for a distinct analysis of structural changes at the score distribution of journals in a subject category. Here we propose it can be performed in a multivariate indicator space using a fuzzy classifier.

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Journal of Thermal Analysis and Calorimetry
Authors:
J. González-Irún Rodríguez
,
P. Carreira
,
A. García-Diez
,
D. Hui
,
R. Artiaga
, and
L. Liz-Marzán

Abstract  

The effect of silica nanofiller on the glass transition of a polyurethane was studied by DSC. The pristine polymer exhibits a single glass transition at about –10C. Uniform SiO2 spheres with different average sizes and narrow size distributions were synthesized in solution by the Stber method [1]. Both the effects of silica content within the polymer and particle size were investigated, as well as two different surface treatments. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) clearly confirms the presence of the particles within the polymer matrix, showing uniform distribution and no agglomeration. While shifting of the glass transition has been reported by many authors, we have not seen any noticeable shift in this polymer. Surprisingly, we found no relevant effects when either increasing the filler content or changing the particle size. Different amounts of particles with average diameters of 175, 395 and 730 nm did not affect the glass transition temperature of the pristine polymer.

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Sleep deprivation affects the homeostasis of the physiological functions in the human organism. Beer is the only beverage that contains hops, a plant which has a sedative effect. Our objective is to determine the improvement of subjective sleep quality using the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI). The sample was conducted among a population of 30 university students. The study took place during a period of 3 weeks, the first 7 days were used for the Control, and during the following 14 days the students ingested beer (were asked to drink non-alcoholic beer) while having dinner. The results revealed that Subjective Sleep Quality improved in the case of those students who drank one beer during dinner compared to the Control, this is corroborated by the fact that Sleep Latency decreased (p < 0.05) compared to their Control. The overall rating Global Score of Quality of Sleep also improved significantly (p < 0.05). These results confirm that the consumption of non-alcoholic beer at dinner time helps to improve the quality of sleep at night.

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Abstract  

Se in Ni and Co concentration in concentrates obtained from the nickel industry has to be determined for quality control requirements in their commercialization. Analysis of Se at minor and trace levels is relatively complicated and destructive procedures are frequently required. In this work the determination of Se by epithemal neutron activation analysis (ENAA) in 17 samples from Cuban nickel industry was investigated. Application of ENAA allowed nondestructive determination of Se concentration down to ppm level in spite of the presence of high Co, Fe, Ni and Cr contents in the samples. For attenuation of the thermal neutron flux a Cd filter was utilized.

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Journal of Radioanalytical and Nuclear Chemistry
Authors:
G. Rodríguez
,
A. Rivero
,
J. Bermúdez
,
S. Guevara
,
J. Insfrán
, and
G. Zayas

Abstract  

In this work the determination of elemental composition of MIBI, MAG-3 and sodium phytate by INAA was investigated. Analytical information about the concentration and/or detection limits of some toxic elements (Hg, Cd, As, Se, Sb) and other trace element of interest (Fe, Cr, Co, Zn, Br) was obtained.

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Acta Physiologica Hungarica
Authors:
A. Lemberg
,
M. Fernández
,
G. Ouviña
,
R. Rodríguez
,
H. Peredo
,
C. Susemihl
,
I. Villarreal
, and
E. Filinger

The hypothesis of the present study was that diabetes mellitus might affect brain metabolism. Streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetic rats, treated with vanadyl sulphate (V) and sodium tungstate (T) were employed to observe the aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and creatine kinase (CK) activities in brain homogenates. Significant increases in AST, ALT and CK activities were found in diabetic brain homogenates against controls, suggesting increments of transamination in brain and/or increases in cell membrane permeability to these enzymes. The increase in brain CK possibly expresses alterations in energy production. The decrease in CK activity caused by V and T treatment in diabetic rats suggests that both agents tend to normalize energy consumption. It is also possible that V and T-induced hypoglycemic effects cause metabolic alterations in brain.

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The diversity of fungal endophytes is poorly known and particularly in the case of Nicotiana tabacum, the literature is limited. The present study assessed and compared the diversity and distribution of endophytic fungi between different organs of tobacco plants. We calculated the relative frequency and rates of colonisation and of isolation of endophytic fungi in roots, stems and leaves, as well as the Shannon–Wiener and Simpson diversity indexes. Similarities between assemblages from the studied organs were also analysed. A total of 1588 endophytic fungal strains assigned to 31 morphospecies were isolated. The highest diversity of endophytes was found in leaves, being Fusarium graminearum and Alternaria botrytis the most common fungal species. This study provides information on the distribution of fungal endophytes inhabiting leaves, stems, and roots of N. tabacum and thus can serve as a starting point for increasing our comprehension on the interactions in which these fungi are involved.

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