Recent publications
For the design or assessment of framed concrete structures under high eccentric loadings, the accurate prediction of the torsional capacity of reinforced concrete (RC) beams can be critical. Unfortunately, traditional semi-empirical equations still fail to accurately estimate the torsional capacity of RC beams, namely for over-reinforced and high-strength RC beams. This drawback can be solved by developing accurate Machine Learning (ML) based models as an alternative to other more complex and computationally demanding models. This goal has been herein addressed by employing several ML techniques and by validating their predictions. The novelty of the present article lies in the successful implementation of ML methods based on Ensembles of Trees (ET) for the prediction of the torsional capacity of RC beams. A dataset incorporating 202 reference RC beams with varying design attributes was divided into testing and training sets. Only three input features were considered, namely the concrete area (area enclosed within the outer perimeter of the cross-section), the concrete compressive strength and the reinforcement factor (which accounts for the ratio between the yielding forces of both the longitudinal and transverse reinforcements). The predictions from the used models were statistically compared to the experimental data to evaluate their performances. The results showed that ET reach higher accuracies than a simple Decision Tree (DT). In particular, The Bagging Meta-Estimator (BME), the Forests of Randomized Trees (FRT), the Ada-Boost (AB) and the Gradient Tree Boosting (GTB) reached good performances. For instance, they reached values of R 2 (coefficient of determination) in the range between 0.982 and 0.990, and values of cvRMSE (coefficient of variation of the root mean squared error) in the range between 10.04% and 13.92%. From the obtained results, it is shown that these ML techniques provide a high capability for the prediction of the torsional capacity of RC beams, at the same level of other more complicated ML techniques and with much fewer input features.
Unconfined compressive strength (UCS) can be used to assess the applicability of geopolymer binders as ecologically friendly materials for geotechnical projects. Furthermore, soft computing technologies are necessary since experimental research is often challenging, expensive, and time-consuming. This article discusses the feasibility and the performance required to predict UCS using a Random Forest (RF) algorithm. The alkali activator studied was sodium hydroxide solution, and the considered geopolymer source material was ground-granulated blast-furnace slag and fly ash. A database with 283 clayey soil samples stabilized with geopolymer was considered to determine the UCS. The database was split into two sections for the development of the RF model: the training data set (80%) and the testing data set (20%). Several measures, including coefficient of determination (R), mean absolute error (MAE), and root mean square error (RMSE), were used to assess the effectiveness of the RF model. The statistical findings of this study demonstrated that the RF is a reliable model for predicting the UCS value of geopolymer-stabilized clayey soil. Furthermore, based on the obtained values of RMSE = 0.9815 and R2 = 0.9757 for the testing set, respectively, the RF approach showed to provide excellent results for predicting unknown data within the ranges of examined parameters. Finally, the SHapley Additive exPlanations (SHAP) analysis was implemented to identify the most influential inputs and to quantify their behavior of input variables on the UCS.
Torsional strength is related with one of the most critical failure types for the design and assessment of reinforced concrete (RC) members due to the complexity of the associated stress state and low ductility. Previous studies have shown that reliable methods to predict the torsional strength of RC beams are still needed, namely for over-reinforced and high-strength RC beams. This research aims to offer a novel set of models to predict the torsional strength of RC beams with a wide range of design attributes and geometries by using advanced M5P tree and nonlinear regression models. For this, a broad database with 202 experimental tests is used to generate highly reliable and resilient models. To build the models, three independent variables related with the properties of the RC beams are considered: concrete cross-section area (area enclosed within the outer perimeter of the cross-section), concrete compressive strength, and torsional reinforcement factor (which accounts for the type—longitudinal or transverse—amount, and yielding strength of the torsional reinforcement). In contrast to multiple nonlinear regression approaches, the findings show that the M5P tree approach has the best estimation in terms of both accuracy and safety. Furthermore, M5P model predictions are far more accurate and safer than the most prevalent design equations. Finally, sensitivity and parametric studies are used to confirm the robustness of the presented models.
This research aimed to investigate the adsorption capability of carrot seeds (CTS) in removing Safranin O dye from aqueous solutions. The influence of multiple factors, such as contact time, adsorbate concentration, adsorbent concentration, and temperature was examined. The mechanism of Safranin O dye ions adsorption onto the carrot seeds were calculated thermodynamically and kinetically. The adsorption isotherms were described by utilizing Langmuir, Freundlich, and Dubinin-Radushkevich models. Results showed that 300 mg of the adsorbent removed 85.39% of a 10 mg/L dye solution. A remarkable increase was noticed after 10 min of conducting the experiment, while the maximum adsorption was achieved after 80 min. It was found that as the temperature increases, the process tends to be spontaneous. Langmuir and pseudo-second-order models best offer the adsorption isotherm and kinetics, respectively, at warm temperatures.
Four metal oxides nanoparticles such nickel, copper, magnesium and zinc oxides were synthesized in this study using different methods. Structural characterizations of the prepared oxides were done using X-ray diffraction and scanning electron microscope. These nanoparticles oxides were mixed with the product water resulted from residues of the production units of Al-Samawah refinery with different percentage ratio (0.02, 0.04, 0.06, and 0.08) gm per 100 ml to detect the effect of mixing on the electrical conductivity, turbidity, total dissolved salts, and pH at different reaction times. Many different effects occur on the physical properties of the product water as a result to adding these ratios of metal oxides nanoparticles which enhancing the water to use in environmental applications.
A crucial factor in the efficient design of concrete sustainable buildings is the compressive strength (Cs) of eco-friendly concrete. In this work, a hybrid model of Gradient Boosting Regression Tree (GBRT) with grid search cross-validation (GridSearchCV) optimization technique was used to predict the compressive strength, which allowed us to increase the precision of the prediction models. In addition, to build the proposed models, 164 experiments on eco-friendly concrete compressive strength were gathered for previous researches. The dataset included the water/binder ratio (W/B), curing time (age), the recycled aggregate percentage from the total aggregate in the mixture (RA%), ground granulated blast-furnace slag (GGBFS) material percentage from the total binder used in the mixture (GGBFS%), and superplasticizer (kg). The root mean square error (RMSE) and coefficient of determination (R2) between the observed and forecast strengths were used to evaluate the accuracy of the predictive models. The obtained results indicated that—when compared to the default GBRT model—the GridSearchCV approach can capture more hyperparameters for the GBRT prediction model. Furthermore, the robustness and generalization of the GSC-GBRT model produced notable results, with RMSE and R2 values (for the testing phase) of 2.3214 and 0.9612, respectively. The outcomes proved that the suggested GSC-GBRT model is advantageous. Additionally, the significance and contribution of the input factors that affect the compressive strength were explained using the Shapley additive explanation (SHAP) approach.
ABSTRACT Hyper-saline water streams, such as the produced water from the oil industry, cannot be treated via the conventional desalination method, such as reverse osmosis (RO), due to the extreme required pressure to overcome the osmotic pressure. This research investigates the effect of oil fouling and cleaning behaviors when the forward osmosis (FO) process is applied to treat hyper-saline-produced water. Synthetic produced water with total dissolved solids (TDS) concentration of 240 g/l (contained Na, Ca, Mg, Fe, Cl, SO 4 , and CO 3 ions) and oil content of 100 ppm was used as a feed solution. Also, two draw solutions, namely: ammonium bicarbonate (NH 4 HCO 3) and magnesium chloride (MgCl 2) of concentrations 6 M and 4.8 M, respectively, were utilized for the FO operation. Results showed that the MgCl 2 draw solution provided significantly higher water flux than NH 4 HCO 3 due to MgCl 2 's high osmotic pressure and low scaling influence. Furthermore, the individual impact of oil was found to be low on the FO's water flux. However, a synergistic effect between the oil and inorganic scaling was noticed. SEM technique was used to comprehend the observation and analyze the fouling content. Although the feed was a highly polluted stream, it was found that osmotic backwashing can recover more than 90% of the initial flux.
The aim of this study is determining distortion in drainage pattern using remote sensing data, many unique types of drainage patterns were distinguished, and the patterns were analyzed with different scales using different satellite images. Drainage patterns may develop as simultaneous processes (i.e., during drainage formation) or after drainage development, and often after a long period of development, depending on the geology of the studied region. Subsequent processes alter the pattern of flow networks. In some cases, the influence of these variables, especially complex factors, causes flow direction pattern distortions. Distortion was determined in the drainage systems, as it differed from a sudden change in the direction of the drainage to the occurrence of local meandering and compressed meander. The common type of drainage distortion is the local meander, this type of anomaly refers to active tectonic processes. Identifying these anomalies and understanding their mechanism helps geologists, geologists and hydrologists to explain many topographic and hydrological phenomena. A previously unknown type of anomaly was detected, and it was named the M-shape pattern. The anomalies in the drainage patterns reflected the effect of the geological and geomorphological structure, as there was a clear effect of faults in this region, specifically the northwest-southeast orientation of faults that have their origins in the Najd movement. Distortions in drainage systems have helped to define geological structures which have been hard to identify clearly from geological maps and fieldwork.
Wastewater discharges that contain dyes are one of the main water pollution sources in the world, where these essentially result from industrial processes. Hence, there are multiple processes to treat this wastewater, where one of them is the adoption process. In this study, the use of PVC-Lisinopril modified polymer as absorbent was investigated using two doses at room temperature. The effect of adsorption time on PH, conductivity, adsorption capacity (q), and removable efficiency (R%) were studied. Results showed that as the time increase, the impact on PH and conductivity of 50 mg adsorbent mass solution was higher than 30 mg solution, where higher acidity and conductivity were obtained. This was attributed to the increase in surface area and surface charge of the adsorbent, and the high ionization of MO. Also, the adsorption capacity and MO removal percentage increased as the mass of modified PVC amount increased. During the adsorption process, there are more active sites and available areas for adsorption when the amount of adsorbent was 50 mg comparing with 30 mg, where the abundance of active sites leads to having more capacity. Similarly, the removal ratio of dyes increases as the adsorbent weight increased from 30 to 50 mg, for the same explained reason. The removal ratio was 84% after 20 min of adsorption.
In this work, it is shown that using the theoretical models could determine the surface area, porosity, and pore size of porous materials. Physisorption adsorption isothermal models of Langmuir, Brunauer-Emmett-Teller (BET), and Barrett-Joyner- Halenda (BJH) models were investigated. The Langmuir adsorption model describes the monolayer adsorption, while the BET adsorption model describes the multilayers adsorbate. In contrast, the pore size is determined by BJH adsorption model. Also, the six types of physisorption isotherms that were classified according to the international union of pure and applied chemistry (IUPAC) recommendations were presented and identified to determine the porosity type of materials.
Copper (Cu) is an essential trace element for the efficient functioning of living organisms. Cu can enter the body in different ways, and when it surpasses the range of biological tolerance, it can have negative consequences. The use of different nanoparticles, especially metal oxide nanoparticles, is increasingly being expanded in the fields of industry and biomedical materials. However, the impact of these nanoparticles on human health is still not completely elucidated. This comparative study was conducted to evaluate the impacts of copper oxide nanoparticles (CuO NPs) and copper sulphate (CuSO4 0.5 (H2O)) on infertility and reproductive function in male albino mice BALB/c. Body weight, the weight of male reproductive organs, malondialdehyde (MDA) level, caspase-3 level, and the presence of Ki67 and CD68, as detected using the amino-histochemistry technique, were investigated. Animals were treated with 25 and 35 mg/kg of CuO NPs and CuSO4 0.5 (H2O) by oral gavage for 14 days. The control group was given distilled water by oral gavage. Body weight significantly decreased at the end of experiments in both treated groups in a concentration- and time-dependent manner compared with the control group. Weights of testes and epididymis (head and tail), as well as the weight of the seminal vesicle, showed a significant decrease compared with the control. However, the average weights of the seminal vesicle and prostate significantly increased. Caspase-3 and MDA levels increased in the CuO NP and CuSO4 0.5 (H2O) groups compared with the control group, and there was a significant difference between the two concentrations used. Immunohistochemical results detected a significant decrease in Ki67 protein in the treatment groups compared with the control. However, increase in CD68 protein was found in groups treated with CuO NPs and CuSO4 0.5 (H2O) compared with the control group. Overall, this in vivo comparative study of CuO NPs and CuSO4 0.5 (H2O) showed that oral intake of copper NPs at 25 and 23 mg/kg was safer to the mice reproductive system than CuSO4 0.5 (H2O) at the same dose. CuSO4 0.5 (H2O) significantly influenced the histopathological and toxicological alteration responses.
Nanofiltration (NF) can be classified as a separation membrane-based process that falls between the standards of ultrafiltration and reverse osmosis processes in the matter of rejected particles size and ionic species. This process could be utilized when a substantial removal of sodium ions is unnecessary, but divalent ions, such as Mg and Ca, elimination is the goal. In this research, thin-film composite (TFC) membranes were prepared on different polymeric substrates, namely: polysulfone (PSU), polyethersulfone, and polyacrylonitrile. Furthermore, their performance for salts removal by the NF was tested. Multiple examination methods were employed to characterize the films and investigate their physicochemical specifications, including scanning electron microscope, atomic force microscopy, and contact angle. Results showed that PSU-supported TFC membranes exhibited the best NF performance in terms of CaCl 2 rejection, while all the prepared membranes showed low NaCl salt rejection. These results confirm the nanofiltration nature of the prepared TFC membranes and the impact of the support layers on the TFC performance. ARTICLE HISTORY
The use of Reverse Osmosis (RO) process in seawater desalination to provide high-quality drinking water is progressively increased compared to thermal technologies. In this paper, multistage spiral wound RO desalination process is considered. Each stage consists of several pressure vessels (PVs) organised in parallel with membrane modules in each PV being organised in series. This allows disconnecting a set of PVs and membrane modules depending on the requirement of cleaning and maintenance. While this flexibility offers the opportunity of generating several RO configurations, we presented only four such configurations of the RO system and analysed them via simulation and optimisation. Production of different grades of water catering different needs of a city is also considered for each of these configurations. The optimisation has resulted in the optimal operating conditions, which maximises the water productivity and minimises the specific energy consumption of the proposed configurations for a given water grade in terms of salinity. For instance, the results indicate that the proposed RO networks can produce drinking water of 500 ppm salinity with a minimum specific energy consumption of 3.755 kWh/m³. The strategy offers the production of different grades of water without plant shutdown while maintaining the membrane modules throughout the year.
Polystyrene is a common thermoplastic and is produced in different shapes and forms. The scale of manufacture of polystyrene has grown over the years because of its numerous applications and low cost of production. However, it is flammable, brittle, has low resistance to chemicals, and is susceptible to photodegradation on exposure to ultraviolet radiation. There is therefore scope to improve the properties of polystyrene and to extend its useful lifetime. The current work reports the synthesis of organometallic complexes and investigates their use as photostabilizers for polystyrene. The reaction of excess ibuprofen sodium salt and appropriate metal chlorides in boiling methanol gave the corresponding complexes excellent yields. The organometallic complexes (0.5% by weight) were added to polystyrene and homogenous thin films were made. The polystyrene films blended with metal complexes were irradiated with ultraviolet light for extended periods of time and the stabilizing effects of the additives were assessed. The infrared spectroscopy, weight loss, depression in molecular weight, and surface morphology of the irradiated blends containing organometallic complexes were investigated. All the synthesized organometallic complexes acted as photostabilizers for polystyrene. The damage (e.g., formation of small polymeric fragments, decrease in weight and molecular weight, and irregularities in the surface) that took place in the polystyrene blends was much lower in comparison to the pure polystyrene film. The manganese-containing complex was very effective in stabilizing polystyrene and was superior to cobalt and nickel complexes.
Background: COVID-19 is an ongoing disease that caused, and still causes, many challenges for humanity. In fact, COVID-19 death cases reached more than 4.5 million by the end of August 2021, although an improvement in the medical treatments and pharmaceutical protocols was obtained, and many vaccines were released. Objective: To, statistically, analyze the data of COVID-19 patients at Alshifaa Healthcare Center (Baghdad, Iraq). Methods: In this work, a statistical analysis was conducted on data included the total number, positive cases, and negative cases of people tested for COVID-19 at the Alshifaa Healthcare Center/Baghdad for the period 1 September – 31 December 2020. The number of people who got the test was 1080, where 424 were infected and the rest of them were not. Results: The study showed that males’ infection and death cases were higher than females by more than double, despite the population ratios of the two genders being almost equal. Furthermore, as the age of patients is older, the chance of death is higher. Death cases were lower in December than the previous three months, which could be attributed to lower infection cases compared with the previous months. Conclusions: We can conclude that the peak of infected ages was the same as the other countries. Hence, the number of checked children was low, while we have the peak around the 40s and 50s. Females’ death cases were much less than males, which could be attributed to the genetic influence and the higher responsibility that females showed than males to prevent the disease’s spreading.
The utilization of novel materials is one of the reliable solutions for wastewater remediation processes, where they could be applied as adsorbents. Among these materials, MXenes are increasingly used composites in different applications, including water treatment techniques, due to their exceptional properties that enhance the total performance. In this work, we used Ti3C2Tx MXene as an adsorbent for the Malachite Green dye removal, considering the dye's chromatic and leuco forms. Effects of adsorbent dose, pH, contact time, and dye's initial concentration on the removal efficiency were studied. Three adsorption isotherms, namely Freundlich, Langmuir, and Temkin, were studied to find the best fitting model with the practical results, where the Freundlich model had the highest R², 0.974. Furthermore, five kinetics models were used to study the adsorption kinetics; these are zero-order, pseudo-first-order, pseudo-second-order, Elovich, and intraparticle diffusion. However, the pseudo-second-order model showed the highest R² value of 0.999. It was found that as the adsorbent dose increases, the removal efficiency increases and reaches 94.1% when the dose was 0.09 g in a 50 ml solution. Interestingly, it was noticed that the removal efficiency increases as the pH increases or decreases; the minimum efficiency was noticed at pH = 6. This was attributed to the leuco nature of the dye; whereas the pH increases, the dye turns colorless and becomes hard to detect. This finding shows that the removal is high when the pH is low, and it is low as the pH gets high but cannot be detected because of the color loss. The removal efficiency dramatically increased as the contact time increased at first; however, at 60 min, it almost reached the study state and the change was marginal. Finally, the removal efficiency decreased as the dye's initial concentration increased.
Dimethyl-organotin(IV) valsartan (Me2SnL2) and dichlorostannanediyl valsartan (SnL2Cl2) complexes were synthesized, characterized, and applied as Poly(vinyl chloride) (PVC) photo-stabilizers. The complexes were loaded within the PVC films in a weight ratio of 0.5%, and the modified films were irradiated to a UV light of 313 nm wavelength for 300 h at room temperature. The efficiency of the complexes-filled films was compared with the plain one and evaluated before and after irradiation by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, weight loss, gel content, change in viscosity, atomic force microscopy, and field emission scanning electron microscopy. The SnL2Cl2 complex had higher activity than the Me2SnL2 complex to retard the PVC’s photodegradation by several mechanisms.
Candida has different types that could cause bloodstream infections. A total number of 150 samples were collected from candidemia patients and examined. The Candida spp. Species isolated from blood samples were analysed. These were identified by culturing the species using different media, namely the chromogenic agar test. Then, the virulence factors of all samples were tested. The Candida glabrata isolates were tested with six commercial antifungal drugs. C. glabrata 67 (44.6%), C. albicans 34 (22.6%), C. krusei 18 (12%), C. tropicalis 17 (11.3%), and C. parasilosis 14 (9.3%). the production of phospholipase ranged between 0.63-0.99 mm. It was found that 96% of the species showed phospholipase activity in aerobic conditions. The protease activities of Candida spp. Isolates were experimentally tested by area of inhibition around the colonies, where 59.3% had the double (++) protease activity, 31.4% with (+) grade, and 9.3% had (-) grade or clear zone around the colony. The hemolytic capacity ranged from 0.69-0.89 in the optimum aerobic environments. Finally, 38.33% of the isolated Candida spp. were positive and 61.67% negative for biofilm formation. Out of the total positive Candida spp. for biofilm formation, 21.73% were strong biofilm producers, and 78.27% were weak. Minimum fungicidal concentration (MFC) of Fluconazole for C. glabrata isolates was not appropriate (NA) due to the occurrence of low inhibition tested for species. Micafungin exhibited the lowest fungicidal activity against C. glabrata ranging from 0.03-0.125, while Fluconazole showed the highest.
Introduction COVID-19 is a pandemic that affected humans’ lives and activities through the year 2020 in a way that was not witnessed in recent years. Many governments declared a complete lockdown as a try to stop the transmission of the disease. This lockdown resulted in a good recovery in environmental health, where air pollutants levels dramatically decreased. Theory There are two relations between air pollution and COVID-19, one is before the disease spread, and the other is after. Before the disease spread, many areas had high levels of contaminants in the air due to industrial activities, transportation, and human density. These areas had the highest infection rates and death cases. This could be attributed to two reasons, the aerosol could help to spread the virus at a higher rate, and air pollutants could negatively affect peoples’ lungs, which assisted the virus in attacking the patients brutally. Results After the disease spread, the lockdown that was applied in the major industrial countries led to a decrease in the pollutants levels and an increase in the ozone level in the air. This lockdown improved the air quality worldwide to a level that all political conferences and agreements could not reach. In this review, we are showing the impact of COVID-19 on air pollutants in different countries. Summary This paper provides information about pollutants' influence on human and environmental health that other researchers obtained in different areas of the globe before and after the pandemic. This could give ideas about the impact of humans on the environment and the possible ways of recovering the environment's health.
Background: The current outbreak of the serious respiratory syndrome disease COVID-19 has resulted from a novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2). This infectious disease was classified as a pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO) because it is threatening public health and life worldwide. Recently, restrictions in many countries are applied to detect the infected individuals and isolate them, in addition to attempts to find appropriate treatments that can help decrease the severe symptoms of the disease. Regardless of the conduced efforts, the number of reported cases of coronavirus infections is still growing up. Yet, no medication or vaccine was approved to prevent and/or treat people from this coronavirus, though many researches from academic groups and medication companies are still ongoing. Objective: This review aims to summarize the possible herbs and plants from the natural herbal medicine along with western medicine, which could assist treat or protect people from COVID-19. Understanding the infection rules, clarifying the pathogenic mechanisms, and detecting the appropriate medication treatment could improve the development of the essential treatment and prevention methods. Conclusion: Since the finally-approved drug for this virus is still absent and a sharp increase in infection numbers is taking place, it became urgent to present possible alternatives, such as the Chinese herbal medicines, in a trail to cure SARS-CoV-2.
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130 members
Mohammad J Al-Jassani
  • Forensic Science
Mohammed Kadhom
  • Department of Environmental Science
Baghdad, Iraq