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A novel filtration model for microplastics using natural oils and its application to the environment

Park et al. | Jun 27, 2022

A novel filtration model for microplastics using natural oils and its application to the environment

Recognizing the need for a method to filter microplastics from polluted water the authors sought to use nonpolar solvents, palm oil and palm kernel oil, to filter microplastics out of model seawater. By relying on the separation of polar and nonpolar solvents followed by freezing the nonpolar solvent, they reported that microplastics could be extracted with percentages ranging from 96.2% to 94.2%. They also provided an estimation to use this method as part of container ships to clean the Pacific Ocean of microplastics.

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Effects of Temperature on Hand Sanitizer Efficiency

Molom-Ochir et al. | May 11, 2022

Effects of Temperature on Hand Sanitizer Efficiency

Here, recognizing the widespread use of hand sanitizers, the authors investigated their effectiveness in relation to storage temperature. They applied hand sanitizer before and after touching a cell phone and used LB-agar plates to monitor the growth of bacteria following this process. They found that 70% ethyl-alcohol-based sanitizers are least effective at temperatures above 107.27 °F and most effective at 96.17 °F.

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The association between hunting and the feeding and vigilance times of American bison in North Dakota and Montana

McCandless et al. | Mar 30, 2022

The association between hunting and the feeding and vigilance times of American bison in North Dakota and Montana

This study hypothesized that feeding times of bison in the hunted populations would be significantly shorter than that of bison in the nonhunted population and vigilance times would be significantly longer than that of bison in the nonhunted population. Notably, the results found significant differences in feeding and vigilance times of bison in the hunted and non-hunted populations. However, these differences did not support the original hypothesis; bison in hunted populations spent more time feeding and less time vigilant than bison in the non-hunted population. Future studies investigating the association between hunting and bison behaviors could use populations of bison that are hunted more frequently, which may provide different results.

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Correlation of socioeconomic status and lead concentration in tap water in Missouri

Rabbani et al. | Feb 03, 2022

Correlation of socioeconomic status and lead concentration in tap water in Missouri

Organic and non-organic contaminants in tap water have been linked to adverse health effects. Tap water is a major source of lead, which is neurotoxic and poses a major health risk, particularly to children and pregnant women. Using publicly available annual water quality reports data for the state of Missouri, the authors show that communities with lower median household income and lower per capita incomes had significantly higher lead levels in their tap water.

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Do trumpet players have a greater expiratory capacity than those who do not play a wind instrument?

Homsi et al. | Feb 01, 2022

Do trumpet players have a greater expiratory capacity than those who do not play a wind instrument?

With healthy lung performance being critical to daily function and maintenance of physical health, the authors of this study explored the impact of airflow training from playing a wind instrument on respiratory system function. With careful quantification of peak expiratory flow of individuals who played the trumpet, the authors found no expiratory capacity difference between students who played the trumpet and students who did not play a wind instrument.

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Fire and dry grass: Effects of Pennisetum villosum on a California native, Nassella pulchra, in drought times

Chang et al. | Jan 23, 2022

Fire and dry grass: Effects of <i>Pennisetum villosum</i> on a California native, <i>Nassella pulchra</i>, in drought times

Invasive species pose a significant threat to many ecosystems, whether by outcompeting native species and disturbing food webs, or through increasing risks of natural disasters like flooding and wildfires. The ornamental grass species Pennisetum villosum R. Br. was previously identified by the California Invasive Plant Council as being potentially invasive; this experiment was conducted to determine if P. villosum displays characteristics of an invasive species when grown in a California chaparral environment. Reults found that in both conditions, the two species had similar germination rates, and that P. villosum grew significantly larger than N. pulchra for around 95 days.

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