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ABSTRACT: The paper presents the analysis of the water distribution system of the town of Chiaravalle, in Central Italy. A hydraulic model of the network is implemented and calibrated to improve the system management. Besides the possibility of reducing the service pressure by inserting some pressure reducing valves, the economic convenience of coupling the valves with the pumps as turbines to covert energy dissipation in energy production is investigated. The determination of the number, location, and setting of such valves and machines are described together with the effects of the pressure control.Procedia Engineering 12/2015; 119(1):984-993. DOI:10.1016/j.proeng.2015.08.989
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ABSTRACT: The rheological properties of the bituminous components (bitumen and bituminous mastic) within asphalt mixtures contribute significantly to the major distresses of flexible pavements (i.e. rutting, fatigue and low temperature cracking). Asphalt mixtures are usually composed of mastic-coated aggregates rather than pure bitumen-coated aggregates. The purpose of this study is to investigate the effects of mineral fillers on the rheological behaviour of several polymer-modified bitumens (PMBs) through laboratory mixing. A neat bitumen and two types of polymers (elastomeric and plastomeric) were used to produce PMBs, and two fillers with different minerals (limestone and basalt) were selected to obtain mastics. The dynamic shear rheometer (DSR) and bending beam rheometer (BBR) were used to characterize the rheological properties of PMBs and mastics. In particular, multiple stress creep recovery (MSCR) tests were performed to evaluate the rutting potential at high temperatures, whereas BBR tests were carried out to investigate the low temperature behaviour of these materials. BBR results for unmodified mastics show that the increase of stiffness is similar regardless of the filler type, whereas results for polymer-modified mastics indicate that the degree of stiffening depends on the combination of filler/polymer types. MSCR results show that adding filler leads to a reduced susceptibility of permanent deformation and an enhanced elastic response, depending on the combination of filler/polymer types. Overall results suggest that a physical–chemical interaction between the filler and bitumen occurs, and that the interaction level is highly dependent on the type of polymer modification.10/2015; DOI:10.1016/j.jtte.2015.06.003
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ABSTRACT: Rice plants accumulate high concentrations of silicon. Silicon has been shown to be involved in plant growth, high yield, and mitigating biotic and abiotic stresses. However, it has been demonstrated that inorganic arsenic is taken up by rice through silicon transporters under anaerobic conditions, thus the ability to efficiently take up silicon may be considered either a positive or a negative trait in rice. Germanium is an analogue of silicon that produces brown lesions in shoots and leaves, and germanium toxicity has been used to identify mutants in silicon and arsenic transport. In this study, two different genetic mapping methods were performed to determine the loci involved in germanium sensitivity in rice. Genetic mapping in the biparental cross of Bala × Azucena (an F6 population) and a genome wide association (GWA) study with 350 accessions from the Rice Diversity Panel 1 were conducted using 15 μM of germanic acid. This identified a number of germanium sensitive loci: some co-localised with previously identified quantitative trait loci (QTL) for tissue silicon or arsenic concentration, none co-localised with Lsi1 or Lsi6, while one single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) was detected within 200 kb of Lsi2 (these are genes known to transport silicon, whose identity was discovered using germanium toxicity). However, examining candidate genes that are within the genomic region of the loci detected above reveals genes homologous to both Lsi1 and Lsi2, as well as a number of other candidate genes, which are discussed.PLoS ONE 09/2015; 10(9):e0137577. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0137577
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