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Dust storm

Abutaleb Sabr, Mazaher Moeinaddini, Hossein Azarnivand, Benjamin Guinot
In the recent years, dust storms originating from local abandoned agricultural lands have increasingly impacted Tehran and Karaj air quality. Designing and implementing mitigation plans are necessary to study land use/land cover change (LUCC). Land use/cover classification is particularly relevant in arid areas. This study aimed to map land use/cover by pixel- and object-based image classification methods, analyse landscape fragmentation and determine the effects of two different classification methods on landscape metrics...
December 0: Environmental Monitoring and Assessment
Sergio Velasco Ayuso, Ana Giraldo Silva, Corey J Nelson, Nichole N Barger, Ferran Garcia-Pichel
: Biological soil crusts (biocrusts) are slow growing, phototroph-based microbial assemblages developing on topsoils of drylands. Biocrusts help maintain soil fertility and reduce erosion. Because their loss through human activities has negative ecological and environmental health consequences, biocrust restoration is of interest. Active soil inoculation with biocrust microorganisms can be an important tool in this endeavor. We present a culture-independent, two-step process to grow multispecies biocrusts in open greenhouse nursery facilities, based on inoculation of local soils with local biocrust remnants, and incubation under semi-natural conditions that maintain the essence of the habitat, but lessen its harshness...
November 18, 2016: Applied and Environmental Microbiology
Giora J Kidron, Wang Ying, Abraham Starinsky, Moshe Herzberg
Once established, biocrusts (known also as biological soil crusts or microbiotic crusts) are thought to be relatively resilient to wind erosion, with crust burial being considered as the main mechanism responsible for crust death. Thus far, to the best of our knowledge, crust flaking and rupture under natural conditions were not reported. We report herein a two-year study during two severe drought years (2010-2012) in a dunefield in the Negev Desert during which in addition to crust burial, crust rupture and flaking also took place...
November 12, 2016: Science of the Total Environment
Mingjie Kang, Pingqing Fu, Shankar G Aggarwal, Sudhanshu Kumar, Ye Zhao, Yele Sun, Zifa Wang
Size-segregated aerosol samples were collected in New Delhi, India from March 6 to April 6, 2012. Homologous series of n-alkanes (C19C33), n-fatty acids (C12C30) and n-alcohols (C16C32) were measured using gas chromatography/mass spectrometry. Results showed a high-variation in the concentrations and size distributions of these chemicals during non-haze, haze, and dust storm days. In general, n-alkanes, n-fatty acids and n-alcohols presented a bimodal distribution, peaking at 0.7-1.1 μm and 4.7-5.8 μm for fine modes and coarse modes, respectively...
October 14, 2016: Environmental Pollution
Laura M Pérez, John M Carpenter, Sean M Andrews, Luca Ricci, Andrea Isella, Hendrik Linz, Anneila I Sargent, David J Wilner, Thomas Henning, Adam T Deller, Claire J Chandler, Cornelis P Dullemond, Joseph Lazio, Karl M Menten, Stuartt A Corder, Shaye Storm, Leonardo Testi, Marco Tazzari, Woojin Kwon, Nuria Calvet, Jane S Greaves, Robert J Harris, Lee G Mundy
Gravitational forces are expected to excite spiral density waves in protoplanetary disks, disks of gas and dust orbiting young stars. However, previous observations that showed spiral structure were not able to probe disk midplanes, where most of the mass is concentrated and where planet formation takes place. Using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array, we detected a pair of trailing symmetric spiral arms in the protoplanetary disk surrounding the young star Elias 2-27. The arms extend to the disk outer regions and can be traced down to the midplane...
September 30, 2016: Science
Hua-Jie Liu, Shi-Bo Fang, Si-Wa Liu, Liang-Cheng Zhao, Xiu-Ping Guo, Yun-Jun Jiang, Jian-Sen Hu, Xiao-Di Liu, Yu Xia, Yi-Dan Wang, Qing-Feng Wu
To test the applicability of lichens in the biomonitoring of atmospheric elemental deposition in a typical steppe zone of Inner Mongolia, China, six foliose lichens (Physcia aipolia, PA; P. tribacia, PT; Xanthoria elegans, XE; X. mandschurica, XM; Xanthoparmelia camtschadalis, XPC; and Xp. tinctina, XPT) were sampled from the Xilin River Basin, Xilinhot, Inner Mongolia, China. Twenty-five elements (Al, Ba, Cd, Ce, Cr, Cs, Cu, Fe, K, La, Mn, Mo, Na, Ni, P, Pb, Sb, Sc, Sm, Tb, Th, Ti, Tl, V and Zn) in the lichens were analysed using inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS)...
October 4, 2016: Scientific Reports
Helena Krasnov, Itai Kloog, Michael Friger, Itzhak Katra
Dust storms are a common phenomenon in arid and semi-arid areas, and their impacts on both physical and human environments are of great interest. Number of studies have associated atmospheric PM pollution in urban environments with origin in natural soil/dust, but less evaluated the dust spatial patterns over a city. We aimed to analyze the spatial-temporal behavior of PM concentrations over the city of Beer Sheva, in southern Israel, where dust storms are quite frequent. PM data were recorded during the peak of each dust episode simultaneously in 23 predetermined fixed points around the city...
2016: PloS One
Mario G Ortiz-Martínez, Orquídea Frías-Belén, Sylvette Nazario-Jiménez, María López-Quintero, Rosa I Rodríguez-Cotto, Braulio D Jiménez-Vélez
BACKGROUND: For many years, African Dust Storms (ADE) has been thought to be associated with high prevalence of asthma in Puerto Rico (PR). Endotoxins (ENX) have been associated with ADE particulate matter (PM) and are known to promote pro-inflammatory responses in lung cells of susceptible individuals through the Toll-like receptor (TLR2/4) signaling pathways. Genetic variants are plausible contributors to such susceptibility. Therefore, we have evaluated a series of nine single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in TLR genes, which have been correlated positive and negatively to asthma prevalence and/or risk, in the Puerto Rican asthmatic population...
2016: BMC Pulmonary Medicine
Guor-Cheng Fang, Chaur-Tsuen Lo, Meng-Hsien Cho, Yuan-Jie Zhuang, Kai-Hsiang Tsai, Chao-Yang Huang, You-Fu Xiao
The main purpose of this study was to monitor ambient air particulates and mercury species [RGM, Hg(p), GEM and total mercury] concentrations and dry depositions over rural area at Longjing in central Taiwan during October 2014 to September 2015. In addition, passive air sampler and knife-edge surrogate surface samplers were used to collect the ambient air mercury species concentrations and dry depositions, respectively, in this study. Moreover, direct mercury analyzer was directly used to detect the mercury Hg(p) and RGM concentrations...
August 5, 2016: Environmental Geochemistry and Health
Mulu A Kebede, David L Bish, Yaroslav Losovyj, Mark H Engelhard, Jonathan D Raff
Nitrous acid (HONO) accumulates in the nocturnal boundary layer where it is an important source of daytime hydroxyl radicals. Although there is clear evidence for the involvement of heterogeneous reactions of NO2 on surfaces as a source of HONO, mechanisms remain poorly understood. We used coated-wall flow tube measurements of NO2 reactivity on environmentally relevant surfaces (Fe (hydr)oxides, clay minerals, and soil from Arizona and the Saharan Desert) and detailed mineralogical characterization of substrates to show that reduction of NO2 by Fe-bearing minerals in soil can be a more important source of HONO than the putative NO2 hydrolysis mechanism...
August 16, 2016: Environmental Science & Technology
Yuxia Ma, Bingshuang Xiao, Chang Liu, Yuxin Zhao, Xiaodong Zheng
BACKGROUND: Air pollution has become a major global public health problem. A number of studies have confirmed the association between air pollutants and emergency room (ER) visits for respiratory diseases in developed countries and some Asian countries, but little evidence has been seen in Western China. This study aims to concentrate on this region. METHODS: A time-series analysis was used to examine the specific effects of major air pollutants (PM10, SO₂ and NO₂) on ER visits for respiratory diseases from 2007 to 2011 in the severely polluted city of Lanzhou...
2016: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Enrique H Bucher, Ariel F Stein
Starting in 2006, a new source of intense salt dust storms developed in Mar Chiquita (Córdoba, Argentina), the largest saline lake in South America. Storms originate from vast mudflats left by a 30-year expansion-retreat cycle of the lake due to changes in the regional rainfall regime. The annual frequency of salt dust storms correlated with the size of the salt mudflats. Events were restricted to the coldest months, and reached up to 800 km from the source. Occurrence of dust storms was associated with specific surface colors and textures easily identifiable in satellite images...
2016: PloS One
James Lewis Crooks, Wayne E Cascio, Madelyn S Percy, Jeanette Reyes, Lucas M Neas, Elizabeth D Hilborn
BACKGROUND: The impact of dust storms on human health has been studied in the context of Asian, Saharan, Arabian, and Australian storms, but there has been no recent population-level epidemiological research on the dust storms in North America. The relevance of dust storms to public health is likely to increase as extreme weather events are predicted to become more frequent with anticipated changes in climate through the 21st century. OBJECTIVES: To examine the association between dust storms and county-level non-accidental mortality in the United States from 1993 through 2005...
April 29, 2016: Environmental Health Perspectives
Yuan Chen, Nina Schleicher, Kuang Cen, Xiuli Liu, Yang Yu, Volker Zibat, Volker Dietze, Mathieu Fricker, Uwe Kaminski, Yizhen Chen, Fahe Chai, Stefan Norra
Nine years of sampling and analyses of fine particles (PM2.5) were performed in Beijing from 2005 to 2013. Twenty-seven chemical elements and black carbon (BC) in PM2.5 were analyzed in order to study chemical characteristics and temporal distribution of Beijing aerosols. Principle component analysis defined different types of elemental sources, based on which, the influences of a variety of anthropogenic activities including governmental intervention measures and natural sources on air quality were evaluated...
July 2016: Chemosphere
Nour Abdo, Yousef S Khader, Mostafa Abdelrahman, Ashley Graboski-Bauer, Mazen Malkawi, Munjed Al-Sharif, Ahmad M Elbetieha
Exposure to air pollution can cause detrimental health and be an economic burden. With newly developed equipment, monitoring of different air pollutants, identifying the sources, types of air pollutants and their corresponding concentrations, and applying mitigation intervention techniques became a crucial step in public health protection. Countries in the Eastern Mediterranean Region (EMR) are highly exposed to dust storms, have high levels of particulate matter (PM) concentrations, and have a unique climatic as well as topographic and socio-economic structure...
June 1, 2016: Reviews on Environmental Health
Bekir Sami Yilbas, Haider Ali, Naseer Al-Aqeeli, Mazen M Khaled, Syed Said, Numan Abu-Dheir, Necar Merah, Kamal Youcef-Toumi, Kripa K Varanasi
Owing to recent climate changes, dust storms are increasingly common, particularly in the Middle East region. Dust accumulation and subsequent mud formation on solid surfaces in humid environments typically have adverse effects on surface properties such as optical transmittance, surface texture, and microhardness. This is usually because the mud, which contains alkaline and ionic species, adheres strongly to the surface, often through chemical bonds, and is therefore difficult to remove. In this study, environmental dust and the after-effects of mud formed on a polycarbonate sheet, which is commonly used as a protective glass in photovoltaic cells...
2016: Scientific Reports
Takayuki Kameda, Eri Azumi, Aki Fukushima, Ning Tang, Atsushi Matsuki, Yuta Kamiya, Akira Toriba, Kazuichi Hayakawa
Atmospheric nitrated polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (NPAHs), which have been shown to have adverse health effects such as carcinogenicity, are formed in part through nitration reactions of their parent polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in the atmosphere. However, little is known about heterogeneous nitration rates of PAHs by gaseous NO2 on natural mineral substrates, such as desert dust aerosols. Herein by employing kinetic experiments using a flow reactor and surface analysis by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy with pyridine adsorption, we demonstrate that the reaction is accelerated on acidic surfaces of mineral dust, particularly on those of clay minerals...
2016: Scientific Reports
Zhipeng Gui, Manzhu Yu, Chaowei Yang, Yunfeng Jiang, Songqing Chen, Jizhe Xia, Qunying Huang, Kai Liu, Zhenlong Li, Mohammed Anowarul Hassan, Baoxuan Jin
Dust storm has serious disastrous impacts on environment, human health, and assets. The developments and applications of dust storm models have contributed significantly to better understand and predict the distribution, intensity and structure of dust storms. However, dust storm simulation is a data and computing intensive process. To improve the computing performance, high performance computing has been widely adopted by dividing the entire study area into multiple subdomains and allocating each subdomain on different computing nodes in a parallel fashion...
2016: PloS One
Yinon Mazar, Eddie Cytryn, Yigal Erel, Yinon Rudich
We evaluated the impact of Saharan dust storms on the local airborne microbiome in a city in the Eastern Mediterranean area. Samples of particles with diameter less than 10 μm were collected during two spring seasons on both dusty and nondusty days. DNA was extracted, and partial 16S rRNA gene amplicons were sequenced using the Illumina platform. Bioinformatic analysis showed the effect of dust events on the diversity of the atmospheric microbiome. The relative abundance of desert soil-associated bacteria increased during dust events, while the relative abundance of anthropogenic-influenced taxa decreased...
April 19, 2016: Environmental Science & Technology
Aiko Hayashi, Andrew Crombie, Ernest Lacey, Anthony J Richardson, Daniel Vuong, Andrew M Piggott, Gustaaf Hallegraeff
Dust has been widely recognised as an important source of nutrients in the marine environment and as a vector for transporting pathogenic microorganisms. Disturbingly, in the wake of a dust storm event along the eastern Australian coast line in 2009, the Continuous Plankton Recorder collected masses of fungal spores and mycelia (~150,000 spores/m³) forming a floating raft that covered a coastal area equivalent to 25 times the surface of England. Cultured A. sydowii strains exhibited varying metabolite profiles, but all produced sydonic acid, a chemotaxonomic marker for A...
March 2016: Marine Drugs
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