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The effect of organic growing was studied on the storability of apple cv. Jonica, Liberty, Mutsuand Pinova. Fruits from integrated and organic orchards were stored at 2-4 °C, 95-99% relative humidity for 6 months. Firmness, activity of b-galactosidase and polygalacturonase enzymes were examined. There was no difference in the activity of β-galactosidase and polygalacturonase enzymes at harvest between the organic and integrated apples, but a significant difference was noted between the cultivars except for Mutsu and Pinova. The activity of b-galactosidase enzyme increased significantly during storage except for cv. Pinova and that of polygalacturonase enzyme also increased significantly. The difference in the activity of polygalacturonase became significant between the cultivars during storage except for cv. Jonica and Pinova. The firmness decreased significantly during storage, with the least change in case of cv. Liberty. It can be established that there is, in general, neither a considerable difference between the growing systems nor between varieties at harvest. The differences became higher during storage. It can be stated that the effect of cultivar on the storability is much more considerable than the effect of growing system.

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The biology of Sesamia inferens (Walker) was studied at 25±1 °C and 70±5 per cent relative humidity on PMH 1 maize hybrid. The incubation period was 6.82±0.05 days. There were six larval instars and the larval development was completed in 29.95±0.16 days. The duration of instars I-VI was 4.17±0.09, 3.60±0.08, 4.47±0.02, 4.40±0.03, 6.18±0.06 and 7.13±0.05 days, respectively. The pre-pupal period was 2.83±0.02 days. The male and female pupa had duration of 8.05±0.12 days and 10.33±0.16 days, respectively. The adult emergence was 93.02±0.01 per cent, with a sex ratio of 1:1.05. The males had shorter longevity of 3.92±0.23 days, while females had 5.05±0.28 days. The pre-oviposition, oviposition and post-oviposition period was 1.11±0.10, 2.96±0.19 and 0.79±0.10 days, respectively. The fecundity was 211.92 ±11.92 eggs with 53.69±10.78 eggs per cluster. The egg hatchability was 92.19±0.01 per cent. The total life cycle was completed in 47.65±0.24 days (Male) and 49.93±0.21 days (female). The observations on the biology will help in developing efficient strategies to manage S. inferens on maize in the north western plains of India.

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Among sucking insect pests, the incidence of a leafhopper [Amrasca biguttula biguttula (Ishida)] and a whitefly [Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius)] remained active through the cropping season in varying population density. Thrips [Thrips tabaci (Lindemann)] population was only observed in early stages of the crop growth. The leafhopper population attained its peak during 2nd half of July and was maximum (9.2 nymphs/3 leaves) in the year 2008. The population of whitefly adults was maximum (14.8 adults/3 leaves) in 2007 and it acquired its peak during end of July and again in end of September to early October. The incidence of thrips was maximum in June. The population of the A. biguttula showed significant positive correlation with minimum temperature (r=0.636; p=0.003), mean temperature (r=0.475; p=0.034), evening relative humidity (r=0.618; p=0.004) and rainfall (r=0.556; p=0.011). The correlation of B. tabaci population with minimum temperature was significantly positive (r=0.454; p=0.044). The multiple regression analysis revealed that all the weather parameters collectively accounted for variability in the A. biguttula and B. tabaci population with R2 values ranging from 0.67–0.80 and 0.50–0.69, respectively, during different years.

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Aspergillus niger was found to be the predominant pathogen associated with black mould rot of onion during storage. Market survey for the assess­ment of spoilage caused by the fungus recorded a loss of 2.9% to 12.09% during the period from June 1998 to February 1999. Application of higher doses of calcium in the form of gypsum (400 kg/ha) and lower dose of nitrogen in the form of urea (50 kg/ha) to the field and advancing the harvest of onion bulbs by fifteen days significantly reduced the spoilage of bulbs during storage. An inverse relationship existed between neck length of the bulbs and spoilage at storage. Bulb rotting was noticed when the storage temperature was between 30 °C and 40 °C and the relative humidity was above 80%. Further, A. niger infection caused reduction in pungency of onion bulbs which was more pronounced at grade 4 than grade 1. The culture filtrates of Aspergillus niger and Asper­gillus flavus isolated from onion as well as the extracts from onion bulbs infected with the above fungi were free from aflatoxin contamination.

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The periodicity of insect activity is affected by endogenous and exogenous factors, and these factor thresholds often limit its activity. The flight activity within 24 h circadian rhythm is often influenced by light, whereas the abundance is affected by temperature. This study aimed to hourly follow the flight activity of the peach (PFF) and Mediterranean (MFF) fruit flies, at guava orchard, using sexual and olfactory attractants. The flight of PFF males usually started before that of females, whereas that of MFF males was in the same time as females. As temperature rose above 30 °C, the flight activity of males affected, but that of females not. Thus, flight activities of males were negatively, and females were positively, correlated with temperature. On the contrary, males were positively, and females were negatively, correlated with relative humidity. The sexual attractant attracted more PFF males than MFF, but the olfactory attractants attracted more PFF females than MFF. The highest male captures were between 7:00 am and 10:00 am, and females between 11:00 am and 5:00 pm, suggesting males fly actively during the morning to locate their mates, whereas females fly actively during the afternoon to locate their food and/or distribute their eggs. This also suggests that PFF and MFF are diurnal species. For management of both species, the spray treatments therefore should be taken during the time interval 7:00 am and 10:00 am for males (to disrupt mating) and 11:00 am and 5:00 pm for females (to disrupt feeding and oviposition).

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Journal of Thermal Analysis and Calorimetry
Authors: D. Giron, Ch. Goldbronn, M. Mutz, S. Pfeffer, Ph. Piechon, and Ph. Schwab

Abstract  

Manufacturing processes may involve the presence of water in the crystallization of the drug substance or in manufacturing or in the composition of the drug product through excipients. Dehydration steps may occur in drying, milling, mixing and tabletting processes. Furthermore, drug substances and drug products are submitted to different temperatures and relative humidities, due to various climatic conditions giving rise to unexpected hydration or dehydration aging phenomena. Therefore the manufacture and the characterization of hydrates is part of the study of the physical properties of drug substances. Several hydrates and even polymorphic forms thereof can be encountered. Upon dehydration crystal hydrates may retain more or less their original crystal structure, they can lose crystallinity and give anamorphous phase, they can transform to crystalline less hydrated forms or to crystalline anhydrous forms. The proper understanding of the complex polyphasic systemhydrates–polymorphs–amorphous state needs several analytical methods. The use of techniques such as DSC-TG, TG-MS, sorption-desorption isotherms, sub-ambient experiments, X-ray diffraction combined with temperature or moisture changes as well as crystal structure and crystal modelling in addition to solubilities and dissolution experiments make interpretation and quantitation easier as demonstrated with some typical examples.

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Abstract  

MDF cements using the blends of sulfoaluminate ferrite belite (SAFB) clinkers and ordinary Portland cement (OPC) in mass ratio 85:15 with Al2O3, and starch, polyphosphate (poly-P) or butylacrylate/acrylonitrile were subjected to moist atmospheres (ambient, 52 and 100% relative humidity (RH)) to investigate their moisture resistance. Their chemical, thermal, electron microscopic and magnetic properties were also studied before and after moisture attack. Butylacrylate/acrylonitrile (BA/AN) copolymer was found to be the most suitable for MDF cement synthesis since the sample containing BA/AN showed the best moisture resistant. There are significant differences in scanning electron microscopy (SEM) of MDF cements before and after moisture attack and with different polymers. New data on the paramagnetic nonhysteresis magnetization curves for all the samples are observed. The MDF cements synthesized from SAFB clinker with dissolved poly-P give the best signal/noise (S/N) ratio. Three main temperature regions on TG curves of both series of MDF cements are observed. In the inter-phase section of MDF cements, the content of classical cement hydrates decomposing by 250C is increased. Combustion of organic material took place by 550C. In the temperature range 550-800C, the decomposition of CaCO3 occurs.

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Abstract  

The system of sulfoaluminate ferrite belite (SAFB) clinkers premixed with Portland cement (PC) in mass ratio 85:15 in combination with hydroxypropylmethyl cellulose (HPMC) or polyphosphates(poly-P) was used for the syntheses of Macro-Defect-Free (MDF) materials. The subsequent moisture treatment and thermal stability of these MDF materials were investigated. The effect of individual humidity upon the evolution of mass is more intensive than the effects of composition of MDF materials or duration of the original MDF material synthesis. Detailed values of mass changes at 100% relative humidity (RH) and under ambient conditions are strongly affected by the nature of polymer used. A significant improvement of moisture resistance of MDF materials is achieved when the materials are dried after 24 h of finishing the pressure application. In the inter-phase section of MDF material samples, the content ofC-(A,F)-S hydraulic phases, mainly tetracalcium aluminate ferrite monosulphatehydrate (AFm) decomposing by 250°C and CaCO3 decomposing at 600–700°C increase after the moisture attack, while cross-links in AFm-like section with typical thermoanalytical traces in temperature region 250–550°C remain intact.

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How are bryophyte alpha and beta diversities distributed across spatial scales along an elevational gradient in an oceanic island? Which mechanisms and drivers operate to shape them? Starting from a multiscale hierarchical sampling approach along an 1000 m elevational transect, we used additive diversity partitioning and null modeling to evaluate the contributions of the alpha and beta diversity components to overall bryophyte diversity in Terceira Island, Azores. Substrate-level diversity patterns were explored by means of the Sørensen Similarity Index and the Lloyd Index of Patchiness. Elevation-level beta diversity was decomposed into its replacement and richness differences components, with several environmental variables being evaluated as diversity predictors. Bryophyte diversity proved to be primarily due to beta diversity between elevation sites, followed by diversity among substrates. Compositional differences between neighboring sites decreased with elevation, being mainly caused by species replacement and correlating with differences in relative humidity and disturbance. At the substrate level, we found a great homogeneity in terms of species composition, coupled with a low substrate specialization rate. We conclude that, in Terceira’s native vegetation patches, regional processes, such as environmental gradients associated with elevation, play a greater role in shaping bryophyte diversity than local processes. Moister and less disturbed areas at mid-high elevation harbor a richer bryoflora, consistently more similar and stable between neighbouring sites. Simultaneously, the different substrates available are somewhat ecologically redundant, supporting few specialized species, pointing to these areas providing optimal habitat conditions for bryophytes. Our findings provide a better understanding of how bryophyte diversity is generated in Terceira Island, indicating that management and conservation measures should focus on island-level approaches, aiming to protect and rehabilitate additional natural vegetation patches at different elevations, especially in the severely disturbed lowlands.

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Acta Veterinaria Hungarica
Authors: Lydia Gil, S. Saura, Arantxa Echegaray, Felisa Martinez, I. de Blas, A. Akourki, Noelia Gonzalez, E. Espinosa, and A. Josa

The present study evaluated the effect of supplementing the medium used to mature equine oocytes in vitro with oestrous mare serum (EMS) or horse follicular fluid (HFF). To this end, 144 ovaries were obtained from mares aged 16-21 months and transported to the laboratory in Dulbecco's phosphate buffered saline (D-PBS) at 30°C. Oocytes were harvested from the ovaries by slicing, and then selected for in vitro maturation (IVM) according to the number of cumulus cell layers and the characteristics of the cytoplasm. The selected oocytes were washed three times in TCM199 medium plus HEPES (TCM-199H) or in the same medium plus glutamine (TCM-199G), then matured in vitro in six study groups established according to the in vitro maturation (IVM) treatment to see possible interactions between HEPES and glutamine on other supplements: Ten percent EMS was added to two of these media (TCM-199H+EMS and TCM-199G+EMS) and 10% HFF was added to the media in two other groups (TCM-199H+HFF and TCM-199G+HFF). IVM was performed at 38.5°C for 40 h in a controlled atmosphere (5% CO2, 95% relative humidity). The findings indicate that the presence of EMS or HFF in the TCM-199H medium gives rise to the best results in terms of the proportions of oocytes reaching maturity (37.7% and 36.8%, respectively). The values obtained with EMS and HFF were statistically similar to each other but differed from the other treatments. The media containing glutamine led to the highest proportions of degenerated oocytes.

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