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  • Author or Editor: T. Robinson x
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We investigated the neighbourhood-scale effect of weeding on native plants in Lance McCaskill Nature Reserve, Canterbury, New Zealand. The reserve is an unproductive basin of limestone debris. Originally set up to protect the Castle Hill buttercup, Ranunculus crithmifolius var. paucifolius , the reserve also offers protection for nationally endangered species: Myosotis colensoi and Lepidium sisymbrioides . Our aim was to investigate whether removal of introduced plants increased the cover of remaining native species. We removed introduced plants, by hand, every year for 6 years from half of the plots. We used nonparametric multivariate analysis to compare overall species cover.The results suggest that weeding does benefit the native plants in this area. There was a significant difference in the mean of the overall native species cover between the weeded and the non-weeded plots. For the ten species measured, the mean area covered per square metre was higher in the weeded plots than in the non-weeded plots in most years of the study. There was considerable variation in the data and we discuss possible reasons for this.

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The kinetics of the reduction of nickel, cobalt and copper ferrites was studied by the temperature programmed reduction method at different heating rates in hydrogen atmosphere. The activation energy values of the reduction processes were calculated using the non-isothermal isoconversional method according to the Kissinger-Akahira-Sunose equation and the dependence of apparent activation energy on the degree of conversion was determined. The carbon monoxide oxidation activities of all the three samples were determined at various temperatures up to 140 °C. An interesting correlation between the apparent activation energies for the reduction process was observed. The decreasing trend of activation energy on the ‘extent of conversion’ in all cases showed that the reduction is a multi-step process involving a reversible process followed by an irreversible step.

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Advances in liquid scintillation counting (LSC) technologies, such as imporved scintillation cocktail formulations and alpha-beta radiation discrimination, make LSC suitable for applications in uranium process chemistry. Ease of use, low cost, and the huge dynamic range of LSC are distinct advantages for analytical support of actinide processing. All uranium isotopes decay primarily with alpha radiation emission. The immediate short-lived daughters of238U are234Th and234Pa. These nuclides are beta emitters having energy bands that overlap the uranium bands in a liquid scintillation spectrum. The resolution of these overlapping bands by alpha-beta radiation discrimination is useful for uranium quantification and purity verification. Protactinium-234 is a high-energy beta emitter that can be further identified and quantified from it's Cherenkov radiation. Energy spectra were collected on the Packard 2500AB liquid scintillator analyzer for uranyl solutions in diisopropylnaphthalene and pseudocumene based scintillator cocktails. Calibration curves were prepared for nitric, hydrochloric, and sulfuric acid media. Base titrations demonstrated the effect of acid quenching on those system. Ion exchange and water soluble polymer extraction studies are readily followed using liquid scintillation methods.

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