J. Dewulf

Ghent University, Gand, Flanders, Belgium

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Publications (61)133.34 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Food waste can be valorized through different technologies, such as anaerobic digestion, incineration, and animal feed production. In this study we analyzed the environmental performance of two food waste valorization scenarios from a company of the retail sector in Belgium, through exergy analysis, exergetic life cycle assessment (ELCA), and a traditional life cycle assessment (LCA). In scenario 1 all food waste was considered to be valorized in an anaerobic digestion (producing electricity, heat, digestate and sorting the packaging material to be used as fuel for cement industry), while in scenario 2 a bread fraction was valorized to produce animal feed and a non-bread fraction was valorized in an anaerobic digestion (producing the same products on scenario 1, but in lower amounts). Scenario 2 was 10% more efficient than scenario 1 in the exergy analysis. For the ELCA and the single score LCA, scenario 2 presented lower environmental impacts than scenario 1 (32% and 26% lower, respectively). These results were mainly due to the avoided products from traditional supply chain (animal feed produced from agricultural products) and lower exergy loss at the feed production plant. Nevertheless, the high dry matter content of the bread waste played an important role on these results, therefore it should be pointed out that valorizing food waste to animal feed seems to be a better option only for the fractions of food waste with low water content (as bread waste).
    Resources Conservation and Recycling 01/2014; 87:57–64. · 2.32 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Soil organic N is largely composed of inherently biologically labile proteinaceous N and its persistence in soil is mainly explained by stabilization through binding to minerals and other soil organic matter (SOM) components at varying strengths. In order to separate kinetically different soil N fractions we hypothesize that an approach which isolates soil N fractions on the basis of bonding strength is required, rather than employing chemical agents or physical methods. We developed a sequential subcritical water extraction (SCWE) procedure at 100, 150 and 200 °C to isolate SOM fractions. We assessed these SCWE N fractions as predictors for aerobic and anaerobic N mineralization measured from 25 paddy soil cores in incubations. SCWE organic carbon (SCWE OC) and N (SCWE N) increased exponentially with the increase of temperature and N was extracted preferentially over OC. The efficiency of SCWE and the selectivity towards N were both lower in soils with increasingly reactive clay mineralogy. Stepwise linear regression found no relations between the SCWE fractions and the anaerobic N mineralization rate but instead with pH and a model parameter describing the temperature dependency of SCWE extraction. Both were linked to texture, mineralogy and content of pedogenic oxides, which suggests an indirect relation between anaerobic NH4+ release and these edaphic soil factors. N mineralization appeared to be largely decoupled from SOM quantity and quality. From the present study on young paddy soils low in pedogenic oxides and with high fixed NH4+ content we cannot infer the performance of SCWE to isolate bio-available N in more developed upland soils. There may be potential to separate kinetically different SOM pools from upland soils because 1° for aerobic N mineralization at 100–150 °C SCWE N was the best predictor; and 2° SCWE selectively extracted N over C and this preference depended on the mineralogical composition. Hence N fractions differing in bonding strength with minerals or SOM might be isolated at different temperatures, and specifically this association has frequently been found a prominent stabilization mechanism of N in temperate region cropland soils.
    Biogeosciences 11/2013; 10(11):7435-7447. · 3.75 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: h i g h l i g h t s g r a p h i c a l a b s t r a c t vertical canopy gradient in mono-terpenoids, photosynthesis and leaf characteristics observed. Unique carotenoid vs. mono-terpenoids composition. Less monoterpenoids in sun leaves compared to semi-shaded counterparts. Plants balance investments in mon-oterpenoids vs. carotenoids. Differences in chemistry and physi-ology between sun and shade leaves. a b s t r a c t It is well known that vertical canopy gradients and varying sky conditions influence photosynthesis (Pn), specific leaf area (SLA), leaf thickness (LT) and leaf pigments (lutein, â-carotene and chlorophyll). In contrast, little is known about these effects on monoterpenoid (MT) emissions. Our study examines simultaneously measured Pn, MT emissions and the MT/Pn ratio along the canopy of an adult European beech tree (Fagus sylvatica L.) in natural forest conditions. Dynamic branch enclosure systems were used at four heights in the canopy (7, 14, 21 and 25 m) in order to establish relationships and better un-derstand the interaction between Pn and MT emissions under both sunny and cloudy sky conditions. Clear differences in Pn, MT emissions and the MT/Pn ratio were detected within the canopy. The highest Pn rates were observed in the sun leaves at 25 m due to the higher intercepted light levels, whereas MT emissions (and the MT/Pn ratio) were unexpectedly highest in the semi-shaded leaves at 21 m. The higher Pn rates and, apparently contradictory, lower MT emissions in the sun leaves may be explained by the hypothesis of Owen and Peñuelas (2005), stating synthesis of more photo-protective carotenoids may decrease the emissions of volatile isoprenoids (including MTs) because they both share the same biochemical precursors. In addition, leaf traits like SLA, LT and leaf pigments clearly differed with height
    Atmospheric Environment 08/2013; · 3.11 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The environmental sustainability of microalgae production for aquaculture purposes was analyzed using exergy analysis (EA) and life cycle assessment (LCA). A production process (pilot 2012, 240m(2)) was assessed and compared with two upscaling scenarios (pilot 2013, 1320m(2) and first production scale 2015, 2.5ha). The EA at process level revealed that drying and cultivation had the lowest efficiencies. The LCA showed an improvement in resource efficiency after upscaling: 55.5MJex,CEENE/MJex DW biomass was extracted from nature in 2012, which was reduced to 21.6 and 2.46MJex,CEENE/MJex DW in the hypothetical 2013 and 2015 scenarios, respectively. Upscaling caused the carbon footprint to decline by factor 20 (0.09kg CO2,eq/MJex DW in 2015). In the upscaling scenarios, microalgae production for aquaculture purposes appeared to be more sustainable in resource use than a reference fish feed (7.70MJex,CEENE and 0.05kg CO2,eq per MJex DW).
    Bioresource Technology 08/2013; · 5.04 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: This study investigated the impact of diffuse light on canopy scale emission of isoprene and monoterpenes measured continuously above a mixed temperate forest, using the disjunct eddy-covariance by mass scanning technique with a proton transfer reaction-mass spectrometer (PTR-MS) instrument. To assess this impact, the relationship between emissions/radiation and emissions/gross primary production (GPP) under clear sky and cloudy conditions were analysed.Under cloudy conditions (high proportion of diffuse radiation), the isoprene and monoterpene fluxes were enhanced compared to clear sky conditions (low proportion of diffuse radiation) at equivalent temperature and above-canopy total radiation. The whole-canopy enzymatic activity of the metabolic isoprene production pathway, however, was suggested to be lower under cloudy conditions than under clear sky conditions at equivalent temperature. The mechanisms behind these observations are probably linked to the better penetration of diffuse radiation in the canopy. Shade leaves/needles receive more radiation in cloudy conditions than in clear sky conditions, thereby inducing the observed effects.
    Atmospheric Environment 08/2013; 74:385–392. · 3.11 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: An innovative analytical method based on high-performance liquid chromatography and atmospheric pressure chemical ionization magnetic sector mass spectrometry was developed and optimized to determine trace concentrations of 11 compounds belonging to the group of the seldom-analyzed oxy-PAHs (phenanthrene-9,10-dione, chrysene-5,6-dione, benzo[a]pyrene-4,5-dione, benzo[a]pyrene-1,6-dione, benzo[a]pyrene-3,6-dione, benzo[a]pyrene-6,12-dione, 4-oxa-benzo[def]chrysene-5-one, pyrene-1-carboxaldehyde, benzo[de]anthracene-7-one, benzo[a]anthracene-7,12-dione, and napthacene-5,12-dione) on airborne particulate matter (PM(10)). The mass spectrometer was operated in multiple ion detection mode, allowing for selective accurate mass detection (mass resolution of 12,000 full width at half maximum) of the oxy-PAHs characteristic ions. Optimization of both the vaporizer (450 °C) and capillary temperature (350 °C) resulted into instrumental detection limits in the range between 7 (benzo[a]pyrene-1,6-dione) and 926 pg (benzo[a]anthracene-7,12-dione). The advanced pressurized liquid extraction (PLE) and the more traditionally used ultrasonic extraction (USE) were compared using ethyl acetate as an extraction solvent. For both techniques, high recoveries from spiked quartz fiber filters (PLE, 82-110%; USE, 67-97%) were obtained. Recoveries obtained from real PM(10) samples were also high (76-107%), and no significant matrix effects (ME) on the ionization process (enhancement or suppression) were found (ME, 89-123%). Method limits of quantification (S/N = 10) were in the range between 2 and 336 pg/m(3). This method was used to analyze real PM samples collected at several urban and rural locations in the Antwerp area. For the first time, concentrations for Belgium are provided. Concentrations of individual oxy-PAHs are in the lower pictograms per cubic meter to 6 ng/m(3) range. High concentration differences between individual compounds are found as exemplified by the 75th percentile of the phenanthrene-9,10-dione and benzo[de]anthracene-7-one concentrations being a factor of 4 to 22 higher compared with the other target oxy-PAHs.
    Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry 12/2011; 402(4):1697-711. · 3.66 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The effects of urban and indoor air pollution on human health are a major environmental concern for all, but not much has been researched in the developing world. Specifically, quantitative data on the occurrence of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) – main contributors to air pollution – in Asia and Africa are scarce compared to the availability of data in the developed world. This paper presents one of the first studies focusing on the analysis and occurrence of VOCs in Vietnam and Ethiopia, which constitutes part of the novelty of this work. A spectrum of 34 VOCs was measured at eight different urban sites in Ghent (Belgium), Hanoi (Vietnam), Jimma and Addis Ababa (Ethiopia) during three sampling campaigns from September 2008 to September 2010. Sampling was done in an active way by means of sorbent tubes filled with Tenax TA. The analysis was done by TD-GC-MS using internal standard calibration. Data were interpreted and compared in terms of (i) individual, subgroup and total VOCs concentration (TVOCs), (ii) indoor-to-outdoor (I/O) concentration ratios, (iii) source identification by diagnostic ratio and/or correlation coefficients, and (iv) ozone formation potential (OFP) at outdoor sites based on up-to-date maximum incremental reactivity (MIR). I/O concentration ratios varied between 0.2 and 30, with big differences noticed with respect to the type of VOC(s) considered and the type of outdoor sampling location. The highest TVOC concentrations were measured in street samples with maximum values of 54 µg/m3 in Ghent, 507 µg/m3 in Hanoi and 318 µg/m3 in Addis Ababa illustrating the large difference in ambient air quality levels. This is also reflected in the arithmetic mean OFP values (µg/m3) of 82, 1308 and 596 in Ghent, Hanoi and Addis Ababa, respectively. Results of this study could be helpful to support formulation of national policy with regard to ambient air quality.
    International Journal of Environmental Analytical Chemistry 11/2011; · 1.24 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: In the past decade, we have witnessed rapid development of direct-injection mass spectrometric (DIMS) technologies that combine ever-improving mass and time resolution with high sensitivity and robustness. Here, we review some of the most significant DIMS technologies, which have been applied to rapid monitoring and quantification of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and biogenic VOCS (BVOCs). They include MS-e-noses, atmospheric-pressure chemical ionization (APCI), proton-transfer-reaction mass spectrometry (PTR-MS), and selected ion-flow-tube mass spectrometry (SIFT-MS). DIMS-based MS-e-noses provide the possibility to screen large sample sets and may yield rich analytical information. APCI is a widespread ionization method and pioneered DIMS in environmental and flavor-release applications. SIFT-MS and PTR-MS allow better control of precursor-ion generation and hence of the ionization process. SIFT-MS puts the focus on control of the ionization process, while PTR-MS does so on sensitivity. Most (B)VOCs of interest can be efficiently detected and often identified by DIMS, thanks also to the possibility of switching between different precursor ions and the recent realization of time-of-flight-based equipments. Finally, we give selected examples of applications for each of the key technologies, including research in food-quality control (MS-e-nose), flavor release (APCI), environmental sciences (PTR-MS) and health sciences (SIFT-MS).
    TrAC Trends in Analytical Chemistry 01/2011; 30(7):1003–1017. · 6.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A dynamic branch enclosure system was used to measure emission rates of biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOCs) from two common European tree species: Fraxinus excelsior and Quercus robur under ambient conditions in Flanders (Belgium). Both tree species were studied for seasonal variability of BVOC emission rates under natural biotic stress (infestations). Emissions were normalized at standard conditions of temperature and photosynthetic active radiation (PAR) (30􏰀C and 1000 mmol m􏰁2 s􏰁1, respectively). Emission rates from Fraxinus excelsior were highest in May (9.56 mg gDW􏰁1 h􏰁1) and lowest in October (1.17 mg gDW􏰁1 h􏰁1). This tree species emitted (Z)-􏰆-ocimene, (E)-􏰆-ocimene and 􏰇-farnesene during the entire measurement period and additionally isoprene only in May. Quercus robur showed isoprene emission variations according to the seasonal cycle with rates of 30, 106 and 29 mg gDW􏰁1 h􏰁1 in May, August and October, respectively. Apart from isoprene, (E)-􏰆-ocimene and 􏰆-caryophyllene were emitted through the entire experimental period.
    International Journal of Environmental Analytical Chemistry 01/2011; · 1.24 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Although biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOCs) only represent a very limited fraction of the plant’s carbon (C) budget, they play an important role in atmospheric chemistry for example as a precursor of tropospheric ozone. We performed a study comparing BVOC emissions of European beech (Fagus sylvatica L.) in controlled and natural environmental conditions. A young and adult beech tree was exposed to short-term temperature variations in growth room conditions and in an experimental forest, respectively. This study attempts to clarify how short-term temperature variations between days influenced the ratio between monoterpenoid (MT) emissions and net photosynthesis (Pn). Within a temperature range of 17–27 °C and 13–23 °C, the MT/Pn carbon ratio increased 10–30 fold for the growth room and forest, respectively. An exponential increasing trend between MT/Pn C ratio and air temperature was observed in both conditions. Beech trees re-emitted a low fraction of the assimilated C back into the atmosphere as MT: 0.01–0.12% and 0.01–0.30% with a temperature rise from 17 to 27 °C and 13–23 °C in growth room and forest conditions, respectively. However, the data showed that the MT/Pn C ratio of young and adult beech trees responded significantly to changes in temperature.Highlights► Comparison of indoor and outdoor measurements of monoterpenoids and photosynthesis. ► Monoterpenoid/photosynthesis showed exponential relationship with air temperature. ► Young and adult beech responded similarly to the changes in air temperature.
    Atmospheric Environment 01/2011; 45(17):2922-2928. · 3.11 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Passive sampling of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in air has received increasing attention in recent years. However, in order to use passive sampling as a reliable sampling technique a compound and sampler specific uptake rate is needed. Therefore, the scope of our study was threefold. First, uptake rates for 25 VOCs were determined under real indoor and outdoor conditions using axial-sampling tube-type samplers filled with Tenax TA, and active (pumped) sampling as a reference technique. Secondly, the mechanisms of passive sampling were investigated by comparing the experimentally determined uptake rates (0.13-0.46 ml/min�) to the ideal uptake rates, calculated based on Fick’s first law of diffusion and sampler geometry. Sampling efficiency SE, defined as the ratio between the experimental and ideal uptake rate, was introduced as a correction factor and showed that ideal uptake rates may underestimate VOC concentrations by a factor up to 4. This compound dependent SE is explained in terms of the partitioning coefficient K, i.e. the compound’s Tenax TA to air concentration equilibrium ratio. Compounds with a low K-value showed the most pronounced non-ideal sorptive behavior. Third, the experimentally determined uptake rates were used to determine VOC concentrations (between 12 and 311 mg/m�³) in 6 homes for the elderly in Antwerp (Belgium). This study provides unique data for indoor air quality at care centers in Flanders.
    Atmospheric Environment 01/2011; 45(32):5828-5836. · 3.11 Impact Factor
  • Atmospheric Environment (1967) 01/2011;
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    ABSTRACT: Methanol exchanges over a mixed temperate forest in the Belgian Ardennes were measured for more than one vegetation season using disjunct eddy-covariance by a mass scanning technique and Proton Transfer Reaction Mass Spectrometry (PTR-MS). Half-hourly methanol fluxes were measured in the range of -0.6 to 0.6 mug m-2 s-1, and net daily methanol fluxes were generally negative in summer and autumn and positive in spring. On average, the negative fluxes dominated (i.e. the site behaved as a net sink), in contrast to what had been found in previous studies. An original model describing the adsorption/desorption of methanol in water films present in the forest ecosystem and the methanol degradation process was developed. Its calibration, based on field measurements, predicted a mean methanol degradation rate of -0.0074 mug m-2 s-1 and a half lifetime for methanol in water films of 57.4 h. Biogenic emissions dominated the exchange only in spring, with a standard emission factor of 0.76 mug m-2 s-1. The great ability of the model to reproduce the long-term evolution, as well as the diurnal variation of the fluxes, suggests that the adsorption/desorption and degradation processes play an important role in the global methanol budget. This result underlines the need to conduct long-term measurements in order to accurately capture these processes and to better estimate methanol fluxes at the ecosystem scale.
    Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics 01/2011; 11:24003-24041. · 4.88 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Over the past decades biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOC) have been widely studied not only for better understanding their functions, biosynthesis and regulation, but also because they have great impact on regional and global air quality [1]. Since all BVOCs react with hydroxyl radicals (OH●) and may also react with nitrate radicals (NO3●) and ozone (O3), they contribute to the formation of ozone and secondary organic aerosols. In this study we focus on Quercus robur which is a widely spread tree species in Europe and known as a strong isoprene emitter. We aimed to investigate seasonal patterns of BVOC emissions from Quercus robur under field conditions and to explore the intra-species variations within Quercus robur trees as both are of great importance for accurate modeling and regional inventories. Measurements were performed during a period from May till October 2009 at the campus of Ghent University (Belgium) using a dynamic branch enclosure system. Experiments were conducted on four potted Quercus robur trees with a varying 1-1.5 m height. Samples were collected on Tenax TA-Carbotrap adsorbent tubes and analyzed by TD-GC-MS. Isoprene was the predominant compound released by Quercus robur (QR1) with a pronounced seasonal emission. The normalized emission rates for isoprene calculated according to Guenther’s algorithm (standard conditions of temperature 30°C and PAR 1000 µmol m-2 s-1) varied from 29.89 µg h-1 g(DW)-1 in Spring (May) to 28.62 µg h-1 g(DW)-1 in Fall (October) reaching peak of 105.51 µg h-1 g(DW)-1 in August. Apart from isoprene, through the whole measurement period trans-β-ocimene and β-caryophyllene were the only BVOC emitted in detectable range (sum of the emissions varied between 0.15 µg h-1 g(DW)-1 in July and 0.24 µg h-1 g(DW)-1 in October). No clear seasonal pattern was observed for those compounds. In May when acorns where developing on enclosed branch, emissions of limonene and β-farnesene were also observed. The tree-to-tree variability was assessed by comparing emissions of 3 different Quercus robur trees (QR 2, 3, 4) under the same conditions. Analyses have shown significant differences in emission strength of isoprene and monoterpenes as well as in emission pattern of monoterpenes. In August emission of isoprene from QR2 and QR3 was significantly lower than emission of QR4 (by factor of 2). Interestingly in October emission of isoprene from QR3 was 4 times higher than emission of QR2 and QR4; moreover the isoprene emission of QR2 stays at the same level as in August. Overall, results demonstrate that BVOC emissions from Quercus robur vary widely throughout seasons as well as from tree to tree. However, the values for isoprene seasonal variation found in the literature are in agreement with our results, the emission range of intra-species variability was not previously reported. We thank BELSPO (Belgian Science Policy; IMPECVOC contract # SD/TE/03A) and FWO (Fonds voor Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek; contract # B/07659/02) for supporting the research program. 1. J. Loathawornkitkul et al., New Phytol. 183 (2009).
    AGU Fall Meeting Abstracts. 11/2010; -1:0225.
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    ABSTRACT: In this paper, two methods for measuring the equilibrium vapor sorption in polymers are critically compared and data on sorption of toluene, p-xylene, hexane, cyclohexane, and heptane in low density polyethylene are reported. The vapor phase calibration method (VPC) was used to measure vapor sorption at low vapor activities in air (below 0.01), and the gravimetric method was used to measure sorption over wide range of activities of pure vapors (0.1–0.9). The Flory-Huggins interaction parameter (in amorphous phase) varied between 1.00 for cyclohexane and 1.19 for toluene. The resulting confidence intervals are conjunctive, indicating that both methods provide consistent results.
    Separation Science and Technology 05/2010; 45(9):1260-1264. · 1.16 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Forest ecosystems are known to be important emitters of Biogenic Volatile Organic Compounds (BVOC). They play an important role in the atmospheric chemistry and may contribute to the formation of ozone and aerosols with consequences on air quality and on climate. In order to better understand the effects of environmental parameters on the emissions, micrometeorological flux measurements were carried out above a mixed forest (Fagus sylvatica, Pseudotsuga menziesii, Abies alba, Picea abies) at the Vielsalm experimental site (Belgium) from July to November 2009. The flux measurements were obtained by the eddy-covariance technique using proton transfer reaction mass spectrometry. In our first measurement campaign, among other VOC compounds, isoprene (m/z 69) and monoterpenoid compounds (m/z 137) have been measured continuously with a data coverage of 75 and 58 % respectively, allowing robust statistical analysis. In our analysis, we focused on these two main emissions. A footprint analysis showed that Fagus sylvatica seems to be the main emitter of m/z 137 and Abies alba seems to be the main emitter of m/z 69. BVOCs fluxes present an exponential response to temperature. This response is more pronounced for m/z 69 while it shows the strongest seasonal evolution for m/z 137. A light dependence of m/z 69 and m/z 137 fluxes was observed but the relationship did not exhibit the same behaviour before (hyperbolic relation) and after midday (linear relation). This behaviour difference induced a hysteresis effect on the daily evolution of averaged fluxes. A robust local minimum was also observed just before midday for m/z 69 (less obvious for m/z 137) during July-August period. This minimum is not observed in the CO2 fluxes which are also measured in Vielsalm. The light dependence of BVOC emissions suggests that m/z 69 and m/z 137 emissions are directly linked to the photosynthetic cycle but the presence of the midday local minimum suggests that other processes influence the measured BVOC fluxes. As for the relation with air temperature, a seasonal evolution of flux-light dependence was far more evident for m/z 137 than for m/z 69. This seasonal variation could be explained by a phenological effect. As Fagus sylvatica is the main m/z 137 emitter, its flux is probably influenced by leaves ageing while m/z 69, as mainly emitted by Abies alba, is less influenced by needles ageing. A wind speed dependence of BVOCs fluxes was also observed, the flux increasing linearly with wind speed. This surprising result will be discussed.
    04/2010; 12:14283.
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    ABSTRACT: The effect of the ratio of the electric field to the buffer gas number density (E/N) in the drift tube reactor of a proton transfer reaction-mass spectrometer (PTR-MS) on the product ion distributions of seven common biogenic unsaturated alcohols (2-methyl-3-buten-2-ol, 1-penten-3-ol, cis-3-hexen-1-ol, trans-2-hexen-1-ol, 1-octen-3-ol, 6-methyl-5-hepten-2-ol and linalool) has been investigated. At low E/N values, the dominant product ion is the dehydrated protonated alcohol. Increasing E/N results in more extensive fragmentation for all compounds. For cis-3-hexenol and 6-methyl-5-hepten-2-ol the contribution of the protonated molecule can be enhanced by reducing E/N with respect to commonly used PTR-MS E/N values (120–130 Td). Significant differences have been found between some of the isomeric species studied, opening a way for selective detection. The C10 alcohol linalool mainly results in product ions at m/z 137 and 81, which are also PTR-MS fingerprints of monoterpenes. This may complicate monoterpene quantification when linalool and monoterpenes are simultaneously present in sampled air.Furthermore the influence of the water vapour pressure in the PTR-MS inlet line on the product ion distributions has been determined. Some major fingerprint ions of the unsaturated alcohols were found to depend significantly on the water vapour pressure in the inlet line and this should be taken into account for accurate quantification of these species by PTR-MS.
    International Journal of Mass Spectrometry. 01/2010; 290(1):14-21.
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    ABSTRACT: Energy affects all aspects of national development. Hence the current global energy crisis demands greater attention to new initiatives on alternative energy sources that are renewable, economically feasible and sustainable. The agriculture-dependent developing countries in Africa can mitigate the energy crisis through innovative use of the available but underutilised biowaste such as organic residues from maize, barley, cotton, tea and sugarcane. Biogas technology is assumed to have the capacity to economically and sustainably convert these vast amounts of biowaste into renewable energy, thereby replacing the unsustainable fossil energy sources, and reducing dependency on fossil fuels. However, the total energy potential of biogas production from crop residues available in Kenya has never been evaluated and quantified. To this end, we selected five different types of residues (maize, barley, cotton, tea and sugarcane) from Kenya and evaluated their energy potential through biomethane potential analysis at 30 °C and a test time of 30 days. The specific methane yields for maize, barley, cotton, tea and sugarcane residues obtained under batch conditions were respectively 363, 271, 365, 67 and 177 m3 per tonne volatile solids. In terms of energy potential, maize, cotton and barley residues were found to be better substrates for methane production than tea and sugarcane residues and could be considered as potential substrates or supplements for methane production without compromising food security in the country. The evaluated residues have a combined national annual maximum potential of about 1313 million cubic meters of methane which represent about 3916 Gigawatt hour (GWh) of electricity and 5887 GWh of thermal energy. The combined electrical potential is equivalent to 73% of the country’s annual power production of 5307 GWh. Utilization of the residues that are readily available on a ‘free on site’ basis for energy production could substitute the fossil fuels that account for a third of the country’s total electricity generation. Besides, exploitation of the potential presented by the biowaste residues can spur an energy revolution in the country resulting in a major economic impact in the region.
    Renewable Energy 35 (2010) 12. 01/2010;
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    ABSTRACT: Monoterpenoid emissions from Fagus sylvatica L. trees have been measured at light- and temperature-controlled conditions in a growth chamber, using Proton Transfer Reaction Mass Spectrometry (PTR-MS) and the dynamic branch enclosure technique.De novo synthesized monoterpenoid Standard Emission Factors, obtained by applying the G97 algorithm (Guenther, 1997), varied between 2 and 32 μg gDW−1 h−1 and showed a strong decline in late August and September, probably due to senescence.The response of monoterpenoid emissions to temperature variations at a constant daily light pattern could be well reproduced with a modified version of the MEGAN algorithm (Guenther et al., 2006), with a typical dependence on the average temperature over the past five days.The diurnal emissions at constant temperature showed a typical hysteretic behaviour, which could also be adequately described with the modified MEGAN algorithm by taking into account a dependence on the average light levels experienced by the trees during the past 10–13 h.The impact of the past light and temperature conditions on the monoterpenoid emissions from F. sylvatica L. was found to be much stronger than assumed in previous algorithms.Since our experiments were conducted under low light intensity, future studies should aim at confirming and completing the proposed algorithm updates in sunny conditions and natural environments.
    Atmospheric Environment (1967) 01/2010;
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    ABSTRACT: Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) have been the focus of interest to understand atmospheric processes and their consequences in formation of ozone or aerosol particles; therefore, VOCs contribute to climate change. In this study, biogenic VOCs (BVOCs) emitted from Fagus sylvatica L. trees were measured in a dynamic enclosure system. In total 18 compounds were identified: 11 monoterpenes (MT), an oxygenated MT, a homoterpene (C14H18), 3 sesquiterpenes (SQT), isoprene and methyl salicylate. The frequency distribution of the compounds was tested to determine a relation with the presence of the aphid Phyllaphis fagi L. It was found that linalool, (E)-β-ocimene, α-farnesene and a homoterpene identified as (E)-4,8-dimethyl-1,3,7-nonatriene (DMNT), were present in significantly more samples when infection was present on the trees. The observed emission spectrum from F. sylvatica L. shifted from MT to linalool, α-farnesene, (E)-β-ocimene and DMNT due to the aphid infection. Sabinene was quantitatively the most prevalent compound in both, non-infected and infected samples. In the presence of aphids α-farnesene and linalool became the second and third most important BVOC emitted. According to our investigation, the emission fingerprint is expected to be more complex than commonly presumed.
    Atmospheric Environment (1967) 01/2010;

Publication Stats

398 Citations
133.34 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 1996–2014
    • Ghent University
      • • Faculty of Bioscience Engineering
      • • Department of Sustainable Organic Chemistry and Technology
      • • Department of Food Safety and Food Quality
      • • Department of Organic Chemistry
      Gand, Flanders, Belgium
  • 2009
    • Belgian Institute for Space Aeronomy
      • Planetary Aeronomy Group
      Bruxelles, Brussels Capital Region, Belgium
  • 2000
    • University of Szeged
      • Department of Inorganic and Analytical Chemistry
      Szeged, Csongrad megye, Hungary