Chemical Engineering

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    Valorization of Low-Grade Dates through Bioethanol Production: A Sustainable Solution for Palestine
    (2024-02-19) Mahmoud Sallam
    Abstract The successful cultivation of date palm trees significantly benefits Palestinian agriculture, particularly in the Jordan Valley and the Gaza Strip. However, this agricultural practice encounters challenges under Israeli occupation, leading to the production of low-quality dates that are unsuitable for consumption or export and are often discarded as waste. This study aimed to explore the potential for producing bioethanol from these low-grade dates and introduced a novel method for determining ethanol concentration using a density meter by establishing a correlation between density and ethanol concentration. The study successfully achieved three objectives: establishing the relationship between solution density and alcohol content, examining the impact of sugar concentration on alcohol yield post-fermentation, and exploring the feasibility of ethanol production from low-grade dates. The results revealed a non-linear relationship between sugar concentration and ethanol yield, with initial increases followed by declines due to the inhibition of yeast cells by higher sugar concentrations. Thermal extraction of sugars from 100 grams of dates followed by a 5-day fermentation produced a 9.49% yield, indicating a promising feedstock for ethanol. Furthermore, the average ethanol concentration obtained from 150 grams of dates after fermentation was 34.95% (by volume), and a second distillation revealed a remarkable maximum achievable ethanol concentration of 77.79% (by volume).
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    Preparation, Characterization and Applications of Zinc Oxide/Carbon Nanodots Hybrid
    (2024-02-12) Aseel Qadi; Reem Abu Shqair; Waleed Farhoud
    Abstract In order to generate materials with better qualities, hybrid materials integrate various components. They are significant because they effectively combine desired qualities. These materials are used in buildings, aerospace, automotive, electronics, energy, and healthcare sectors. This study focuses on the synthesis and characterization of zinc oxide (ZnO), carbon nanodots (CNDs), and their hybridization, exploring their application in the photodegradation of methylene blue. Zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnO NPs) were successfully synthesized using a microwave-based technique, resulting in a high-quality product with a yield of 17.3%. Using glucose as the precursor, CNDs were simultaneously created using the same microwave-based technique, with a yield of roughly 9.5%. The ZnO-CNDs hybrid was prepared by a one-pot microwave-based technique, where both moieties were created at the same time and combined to form a hybrid with a pale-yellowish hybrid material with a product yield of 13.5%. The hybridization was attributed to the adsorption of CNDs onto the surface of ZnO NPs, which was made by weak linkage interactions such as van der Waals forces or hydrogen bonds. Additionally, it was observed that using ammonium hydroxide (NH4OH) instead of sodium hydroxide (NaOH) in the synthesis process significantly increased the yield of the products. Particularly, the yield for ZnO was 27.7%, while for CNDs, it reached 17.3%. The yield for the hybrid material increased even more, reaching 24.4%. Importantly, ammonium hydroxide proved to be a more effective reducing agent than sodium hydroxide in terms of increasing yield. In the photodegradation application, ZnO and ZnO–CNDs hybrid thin films demonstrated effectiveness in degrading methylene blue. The ZnO-CNDs hybrid exhibits substantial photocatalytic activity, surpassing ZnO, with a degradation efficiency of 70%. while ZnO alone shows an efficiency of 60% after 120 minutes of light irradiation. Photodegradation kinetics reveal an increased rate constant for the hybrid, with values of 0.01162 min-1, suggesting enhanced surface activity compared to ZnO (0.00943 min-1). The apparent quantum yield calculations further emphasize the hybrid's superior performance, with values of 0.023 for the ZnO-CNDs hybrid and 0.019 for ZnO. The 3 stability of thin films is investigated through multiple cycles, revealing the sustained efficiency of the ZnO-CNDs hybrid, attributed to the homogeneity introduced by CNDs. These findings highlight the promising potential of the ZnO-CNDs hybrid as an efficient photocatalyst for the degradation of methylene blue.
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    Synthesis of Nitrogen-Doped Carbon Nanodots from Ethylene Amine
    (2024-02-06) Anhar Azizeh; Ansam Zedan
    Abstract Carbon nanodots are a new emerging class of carbon allotropes having excellent properties which make them good candidates for different applications. CNDs can be doped with different elements such as N, S, and P. N doped CNDs have been synthesized by different researchers by using different resources and a variety of methods. In this work, N doped CNDs will be synthesized from triethylenetetramine and Penta ethylene hexamine by direct thermal method, studying the effect of using hydroge n peroxide as an oxidant and/or catalyst agent on completion time, product yield, quantum yield and optical properties such as energy bandgap. It was found that the addition of hydrogen peroxide improved the completion time and product yield for both precu rsors with a minimum of 7 minutes to synthesize CNDs from triethylenetetramine and the highest product yield of 46% for CNDs from Penta ethylene hexamine. About 15% Quantum yield has been attained for CNDs synthesized from triethylenetetramine in the absen ce of hydrogen peroxide with gradual decay upon the addition of H 2 O 2 . The presence of H 2 O 2 also affects the energy bandgap of CNDs prepared from triethylenemelamine with a slight decrease upon its increase. The FT IR and XPS acquisition have proved the sa ucerful synthesis of N doped CNDs from both precursors, that was clear from the higher percentage of nitrogen element about 17 at. % and the nitrogen functional groups existed on the CNDs surfaces.
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    Studying the installation of a solar cell system for Rafidia Hospital
    (2024-02-04) Ahmad Halboni; Qusai Yassen
    Abstract In this study, the idea of installing a solar cell system was discussed for the Rafidia Governmental Hospital building, which is located within the concession of the Northern Electricity Distribution Company. The net metering system was used according to the company's requirements and in accordance with the Energy Quality Authority laws agreed upon by the Council of Ministers for the year 2015. The electric bills necessary for the study were collected and analyzed with the aim of using renewable energy in the hospital. Several field visits were made to the site in order to take the necessary engineering measurements, look with the naked eye at the direction of the sun, and take the correct opinion of the installation locations of the solar cells, the way the cables pass, and the locations of the inverters. The engineering design was done using AutoCAD. PV system and financial accounts using Excel.
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    Compressive Strengths and Water Absorption of Recycled Plastic – Based Concrete
    (2023-07-30) Ameer Al Fuqaha; Ahmad Ayyash; Ragheed Qabaha
    Abstract For a long time, plastic was considered as an important material in our life where it is used in a lot of our daily life aspects, but it caused a lot of environmental problems.For that, this project intends to use the plastic waste in concrete mixture hoping that to reduce the amount of plastic waste and to enhance some of the concrete properties mainly the compressive strength and the water absorptivity of the concrete. This study aims to investigate the effects of utilizing poly-ethylene terephthalate (PET) as a partial substitute for coarse aggregate in concrete. A group of seven concrete mixtures containing waste PET bottle was prepared as a partial substitute for coarse aggregate with substitution levels 1%, 2%, 3%, 4%, 5%, 10% and 15% as a weight percent. The compressive strength and water absorption of concrete with differentrecycled plastic percentages were measured and compared with plain concrete (without the recycled plastics) as a reference.The tensile strength of the concrete was also explored. The results show that the compressive property and tensile property of concrete improved when adding plastic to up to 5 wt%However,as the PET wt% increases, the water absorption property decreased whilethe density of concrete decreased.