ResearchPad - fuels https://www.researchpad.co Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[Instigation of indigenous thermophilic bacterial consortia for enhanced oil recovery from high temperature oil reservoirs]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_13812 The purpose of the study involves the development of an anaerobic, thermophilic microbial consortium TERIK from the high temperature reservoir of Gujarat for enhance oil recovery. To isolate indigenous microbial consortia, anaerobic baltch media were prepared and inoculated with the formation water; incubated at 65°C for 10 days. Further, the microbial metabolites were analyzed by gas chromatography, FTIR and surface tension. The efficiency of isolated consortia towards enhancing oil recovery was analyzed through core flood assay. The novelty of studied consortia was that, it produces biomass (600 mg/l), bio-surfactant (325 mg/l), and volatile fatty acids (250 mg/l) at 65°C in the span of 10 days, that are adequate to alter the surface tension (70 to 34 mNm -1) and sweep efficiency of zones facilitating the displacement of oil. TERIK was identified as Clostridium sp. The FTIR spectra of biosurfactant indicate the presence of N-H stretch, amides and polysaccharide. A core flooding assay was designed to explore the potential of TERIK towards enhancing oil recovery. The results showed an effective reduction in permeability at residual oil saturation from 2.14 ± 0.1 to 1.39 ± 0.05 mD and 19% incremental oil recovery.

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<![CDATA[Do parents counter-balance the carbon emissions of their children?]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/Nea582d41-f072-4a93-882b-8bb6cca64243

It is well understood that adding to the population increases CO2 emissions. At the same time, having children is a transformative experience, such that it might profoundly change adult (i.e., parents’) preferences and consumption. How it might change is, however, unknown. Depending on if becoming a parent makes a person “greener” or “browner,” parents may either balance or exacerbate the added CO2 emissions from their children. Parents might think more about the future, compared to childless adults, including risks posed to their children from environmental events like climate change. But parenthood also adds needs and more intensive competition on your scarce time. Carbon-intensive goods can add convenience and help save time, e.g., driving may facilitate being in more places in one day, compared to public transportation or biking. Pre-prepared food that contain red meat may save time and satisfy more household preferences, relative to vegetarian food. We provide the first rigorous test of whether parents are greener or browner than other adults. We create a unique dataset by combining detailed micro data on household expenditures of all expenditure groups particularly important for CO2 emissions (transportation, food, and heating/electricity) with CO2 emissions, and compare emissions from Swedish adults with and without children. We find that parents emit more CO2 than childless adults. Only a small fraction of adults permanently choose not to have children, which means any meaningful self-selection into parenthood based on green preferences is unlikely. Our findings suggest that having children might increase CO2 emissions both by adding to the population and by increasing CO2 emissions from those choosing to have children.

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<![CDATA[The effect of NaOH pretreatment on coal structure and biomethane production]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/Nec5b1db1-34f5-4425-bec1-1f1e431a6eb6

Biogenic CBM is an important component of detected CBM, which is formed by coal biodegradation and can be regenerated by anaerobic microorganisms. One of the rate-limiting factors for microbial degradation is the bioavailability of coal molecules, especially for anthracite which is more condense and has higher aromaticity compared with low-rank coal. In this paper, NaOH solution with different concentrations and treating time was employed to pretreat anthracite from Qinshui Basin to alter the coal structure and facilitate the biodegradation. The results showed that the optimal pretreatment conditions were 1.5 M NaOH treating for 12 h, under which the biomethane production was increased by 17.65% compared with untreated coal. The results of FTIR and XRD showed that NaOH pretreatment mainly reduced the multi-substituted aromatics, increased the C-O in alcohols and aromatic ethers and the branching degree of aliphatic chain, and decreased the aromatic ring structure, resulting in the improvement of coal bioavailability and enhancement of biomethane yield. And some organics with potential to generate methane were released to filtrate as revealed by GC-MS. Our results suggested that NaOH was an effective solution for pretreating coal to enhance biogenic methane production, and anthracite after treating with NaOH could be the better substrate for methanogenesis.

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<![CDATA[Height of overburden fracture based on key strata theory in longwall face]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/Nb6c965ed-0040-4b7a-b381-dffd2122531d

Among the three overburden zones (the caving zone, the fracture zone, and the continuous deformation zone) in longwall coal mining, the continuous deformation zone is often considered to be continuous without cracks, so continuum mechanics can be used to calculate the subsidence of overburden strata. Longwall coal mining, however, will induce the generation of wide cracks in the surface and thus may cause the continuous deformation zone to fracture. In this paper, whether there are cracks in the continuous deformation zone as well as the height of overburden fracture in longwall face and the subsidence and deformation of strata of different fracture penetration ratios were studied by means of physical simulation, theoretical analysis and numerical simulation. The results show that: (1) Rock stratum starts to fracture as long as it has slightly subsided for only tens of millimeters, and the height of fracture development is the height of working face overburden. (2) With the increase of fracture penetration ratio, the subsidence of key strata remains basically unchanged; the surface deformation range and the maximum compression deformation decrease, while the maximum horizontal movement and maximum horizontal tensile deformation increase. Therefore, the subsidence of overburden strata which have fractured but have not broken can be calculated through the continuum mechanics method.

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<![CDATA[A simplistic approach of algal biofuels production from wastewater using a Hybrid Anaerobic Baffled Reactor and Photobioreactor (HABR-PBR) System]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/Nef4e691d-a854-4652-b105-625011806151

The current technologies of algal biofuels production and wastewater treatment (e.g., aerobic) process are still in question, due to the significant amount of fresh water and nutrients requirements for microalgae cultivation, and negative energy balance in both processes, especially when considered in the context of developing counties around the world. In this research, a simplistic sustainable approach of algal biofuels production from wastewater was proposed using a Hybrid Anaerobic Baffled Reactor (HABR) and Photobioreactor (PBR) system. The study suggests that the HABR was capable of removing most of the organic and solid (>90% COD and TSS removal) from wastewater, and produced a healthy feedstock (high N: P = 3:1) for microalgae cultivation in PBRs for biofuels production. A co-culture of Chlorella vulgaris, Chlorella sorokiniana, and Scenedesmus simris002 showed high lipid content up to 44.1%; and the dominant FAMEs composition (C16-C18) of 87.9% in produced biofuels. Perhaps, this proposed low-cost technological approach (e.g., HABR-PBR system) would connect the currently broken link of sustainable bioenergy generation and wastewater treatment pathway for developing countries.

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<![CDATA[RedCom: A strategy for reduced metabolic modeling of complex microbial communities and its application for analyzing experimental datasets from anaerobic digestion]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c5df347d5eed0c48458108e

Constraint-based modeling (CBM) is increasingly used to analyze the metabolism of complex microbial communities involved in ecology, biomedicine, and various biotechnological processes. While CBM is an established framework for studying the metabolism of single species with linear stoichiometric models, CBM of communities with balanced growth is more complicated, not only due to the larger size of the multi-species metabolic network but also because of the bilinear nature of the resulting community models. Moreover, the solution space of these community models often contains biologically unrealistic solutions, which, even with model linearization and under application of certain objective functions, cannot easily be excluded. Here we present RedCom, a new approach to build reduced community models in which the metabolisms of the participating organisms are represented by net conversions computed from the respective single-species networks. By discarding (single-species) net conversions that violate a minimality criterion in the exchange fluxes, it is ensured that unrealistic solutions in the community model are excluded where a species altruistically synthesizes large amounts of byproducts (instead of biomass) to fulfill the requirements of other species. We employed the RedCom approach for modeling communities of up to nine organisms involved in typical degradation steps of anaerobic digestion in biogas plants. Compared to full (bilinear and linearized) community models, we found that the reduced community models obtained with RedCom are not only much smaller but allow, also in the largest model with nine species, extensive calculations required to fully characterize the solution space and to reveal key properties of communities with maximum methane yield and production rates. Furthermore, the predictive power of the reduced community models is significantly larger because they predict much smaller ranges of feasible community compositions and exchange fluxes still being consistent with measurements obtained from enrichment cultures. For an enrichment culture for growth on ethanol, we also used metaproteomic data to further constrain the solution space of the community models. Both model and proteomic data indicated a dominance of acetoclastic methanogens (Methanosarcinales) and Desulfovibrionales being the least abundant group in this microbial community.

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<![CDATA[An open source algorithm to detect natural gas leaks from mobile methane survey data]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c6dc9e7d5eed0c48452a459

The data collected by mobile methane (CH4) sensors can be used to find natural gas (NG) leaks in urban distribution systems. Extracting actionable insights from the large volumes of data collected by these sensors requires several data processing steps. While these survey platforms are commercially available, the associated data processing software largely constitute a black box due to their proprietary nature. In this paper we describe a step-by-step algorithm for developing leak indications using data from mobile CH4 surveys, providing an under-the-hood look at the choices and challenges associated with data analysis. We also describe how our algorithm has evolved over time, and the data-driven insights that have prompted these changes. Applying our algorithm to data collected in 15 cities produced more than 6100 leak indications and estimates of the leaks’ size. We use these results to characterize the distribution of leak sizes in local NG distribution systems. Mobile surveys are already an effective and necessary tool for managing NG distribution systems, but improvements in the technology and software will continue to increase its value.

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<![CDATA[Removal of hydrogen sulfide from a biogas mimic by using impregnated activated carbon adsorbent]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c6c75e0d5eed0c4843d03aa

Adsorption technology has led to the development of promising techniques to purify biogas, i.e., biomethane or biohydrogen. Such techniques mainly depend on the adsorbent ability and operating parameters. This research focused on adsorption technology for upgrading biogas technique by developing a novel adsorbent. The commercial coconut shell activated carbon (CAC) and two types of gases (H2S/N2 and H2S/N2/CO2) were used. CAC was modified by copper sulfate (CuSO4), zinc acetate (ZnAc2), potassium hydroxide (KOH), potassium iodide (KI), and sodium carbonate (Na2CO3) on their surface to increase the selectivity of H2S removal. Commercial H2S adsorbents were soaked in 7 wt.% of impregnated solution for 30 min before drying at 120°C for 24 h. The synthesized adsorbent’s physical and chemical properties, including surface morphology, porosity, and structures, were characterized by SEM-EDX, FTIR, XRD, TGA, and BET analyses. For real applications, the modified adsorbents were used in a real-time 0.85 L single-column adsorber unit. The operating parameters for the H2S adsorption in the adsorber unit varied in L/D ratio (0.5–2.5) and feed flow rate (1.5–5.5 L/min) where, also equivalent with a gas hourly space velocity, GHSV (212.4–780.0 hour-1) used. The performances of H2S adsorption were then compared with those of the best adsorbent that can be used for further investigation. Characterization results revealed that the impregnated solution homogeneously covered the adsorbent surface, morphology, and properties (i.e., crystallinity and surface area). BET analysis further shows that the modified adsorbents surface area decreased by up to 96%. Hence, ZnAc2–CAC clarify as the best adsorption capacity ranging within 1.3–1.7 mg H2S/g, whereby the studied extended to adsorption-desorption cycle.

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<![CDATA[Features and drivers for energy-related carbon emissions in mega city: The case of Guangzhou, China based on an extended LMDI model]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c6b2653d5eed0c484289825

Based on the apparent energy consumption data, a systematic and comprehensive city-level total carbon accounting approach was established and applied in Guangzhou, China. A newly extended LMDI method based on the Kaya identity was adopted to examine the main drivers for the carbon emissions increments both at the industrial sector and the residential sector. Research results are listed as follow: (1) Carbon emissions embodied in the imported electricity played a significant important role in emissions mitigation in Guangzhou. (2) The influences and impacts of various driving factors on industrial and residential carbon emissions are different in the three different development periods, namely, the 10th five-year plan period (2003–2005), the 11th five-year plan period (2005–2010), and the 12th five-year plan period (2010–2013). The main reasons underlying these influencing mechanisms were different policy measures announced by the central and local government during the different five-year plan periods. (3) The affluence effect (g-effect) was the dominant positive effect in driving emissions increase, while the energy intensity effect of production (e-effect-Production), the economic structure effect (s-effect) and the carbon intensity effect of production (f-effect-Production) were the main contributing factors suppressing emissions growth at the industrial sector. (4) The affluence effect of urban (g-effect-AUI) was the most dominant positive driving factor on emissions increment, while the energy intensity effect of urban (e-effect-Urban) played the most important role in curbing emissions growth at the residential sector.

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<![CDATA[Maintenance and inspection as risk factors in helicopter accidents: Analysis and recommendations]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c5df318d5eed0c484580cfa

In this work, we establish that maintenance and inspection are a risk factor in helicopter accidents. Between 2005 and 2015, flawed maintenance and inspection were causal factors in 14% to 21% of helicopter accidents in the U.S. civil fleet. For these maintenance-related accidents, we examined the incubation time from when the maintenance error was committed to the time when it resulted in an accident. We found a significant clustering of maintenance accidents within a short number of flight-hours after maintenance was performed. Of these accidents, 31% of these accidents occurred within the first 10 flight-hours. This is reminiscent of infant mortality in reliability engineering, and we characterized it as maintenance error infant mortality. The last quartile of maintenance-related accidents occurred after 60 flight-hours following maintenance and inspection. We then examined the “physics of failures” underlying maintenance-related accidents and analyzed the prevalence of different types of maintenance errors in helicopter accidents. We found, for instance, that the improper or incomplete (re)assembly or installation of a part category accounted for the majority of maintenance errors with 57% of such cases, and within this category, the incorrect torquing of the B-nut and incomplete assembly of critical linkages were the most prevalent maintenance errors. We also found that within the failure to perform a required preventive maintenance and inspection task category, the majority of the maintenance programs were not executed in compliance with federal regulations, nor with the manufacturer maintenance plan. Maintenance-related accidents are particularly hurtful for the rotorcraft community, and they can be eliminated. This is a reachable objective when technical competence meets organizational proficiency and the collective will of all the stakeholders in this community. We conclude with a set of recommendations based on our findings, which borrow from the ideas underlying the defense-in-depth safety principle to address this disquieting problem.

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<![CDATA[Fire, CO2, and climate effects on modeled vegetation and carbon dynamics in western Oregon and Washington]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c57e67cd5eed0c484ef33e4

To develop effective long-term strategies, natural resource managers need to account for the projected effects of climate change as well as the uncertainty inherent in those projections. Vegetation models are one important source of projected climate effects. We explore results and associated uncertainties from the MC2 Dynamic Global Vegetation Model for the Pacific Northwest west of the Cascade crest. We compare model results for vegetation cover and carbon dynamics over the period 1895–2100 assuming: 1) unlimited wildfire ignitions versus stochastic ignitions, 2) no fire, and 3) a moderate CO2 fertilization effect versus no CO2 fertilization effect. Carbon stocks decline in all scenarios, except without fire and with a moderate CO2 fertilization effect. The greatest carbon stock loss, approximately 23% of historical levels, occurs with unlimited ignitions and no CO2 fertilization effect. With stochastic ignitions and a CO2 fertilization effect, carbon stocks are more stable than with unlimited ignitions. For all scenarios, the dominant vegetation type shifts from pure conifer to mixed forest, indicating that vegetation cover change is driven solely by climate and that significant mortality and vegetation shifts are likely through the 21st century regardless of fire regime changes.

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<![CDATA[Study on dielectric properties of high organic sulfur coking coal and modeling sulfur compounds]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c37b795d5eed0c48449054b

Coking coal is geologically scarce resource and most of them cannot be directly used in steel making due to their higher sulfur content. One desulfurization method that has great potential for massive application is microwave desulfurization, which removes the relatively stubborn organic sulfur under mild conditions. The dielectric properties of coals determine the efficiency of the microwave energy absorption. The key to describing the mechanism of microwave desulfurization and further improvement of the desulfurization efficiency is the dielectric response of organic sulfur compounds in coal to microwave. This study focuses on existing formand microwave response of organic sulfur components of three typical coking coal in China. Resultsshowed that the major organic sulfur in selected coals is thiophene which has a stable structure and is the most difficult to be removed. Several dielectric peaks (dielectric loss)andsignificant differencesofeach selected coal samples are observed. The microwave absorption peaks of the model sulfur compounds are identified to be within 9-11GHz. The real parts of the relative dielectric constants (hereinafter referred to as ε′) shows a decreasing trend as: diphenyl sulfoxide > diphenyl sulfone > diphenyl sulfide > dibenzothiophene > Octadecane thiol. Response to microwaveare observed to be distinctively different between sulfur-containing and sulfur-free model compounds. The dielectric polarization of mixture (coal mixed with model sulfur compounds) is greater than pure coal. Meanwhile the higher the sulfur content of the coal, the greater the ε′ is. Sulfur componentsin coal can significantly influence its polarization.

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<![CDATA[Are Tanzanian health facilities ready to provide management of chronic respiratory diseases? An analysis of national survey for policy implications]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c3d0177d5eed0c48403b9a9

Introduction

Chronic respiratory diseases in Tanzania are prevalent and a silent burden to the affected population, and healthcare system. We aimed to explore the availability of services and level of health facilities readiness to provide management of chronic respiratory diseases and its associated factors.

Methods

The current study is a secondary analysis of the 2014–2015 Tanzania Service Provision Assessment Survey data. Facilities were considered to have a high readiness to provide management of chronic respiratory diseases if they scored at least half (≥50%) of the indicators listed in each of the three domains (staff training and guideline, equipment, and basic medicines) as identified by World Health Organization-Service Availability and Readiness Assessment manual. Descriptive, unadjusted and adjusted logistic regression analyses were performed. A P value < 0.05 was taken to indicate statistical significance.

Results

Out of 723 facilities included in this analysis, approximately one-tenth had a high readiness to provide management of chronic respiratory diseases. Less than 10% of the facilities had at least one staff who received training for management of chronic respiratory diseases. In an adjusted model, privately owned facilities [AOR = 3.3; 95% CI, 1.5–7.5], hospitals [AOR = 11.6; 95% CI, 5.0–27.2], health centres [AOR = 5.0; 95% CI, 2.4–10.7], and performance of routine management meeting [AOR = 3.3; 95% CI, 1.4–7.8] were significantly associated with high readiness to provide management for chronic respiratory diseases.

Conclusion

Majority of Tanzanian health facilities have low readiness to provide management for chronic respiratory diseases. There is a need for the Tanzanian government to increase the availability of diagnostic equipment, medication, and to provide refresher training specifically in the lower-level and public health facilities for better management of chronic respiratory diseases and other non-communicable diseases.

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<![CDATA[Asymmetric relationship of urbanization and CO2 emissions in less developed countries]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c141f15d5eed0c484d29959

Understanding the relationship between carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and the urbanization of national populations has been a key concern for environmental scholars for several decades. Although sophisticated modeling techniques have been developed to explore the connection between increases in urban populations and CO2 emissions, none has attempted to assess whether declines in urbanization have an effect on emissions that is not symmetrical with that of growth in urbanization. The present study uses panel data on CO2 emissions and the percentage of individuals living in urban areas, as well as a variety of other structural factors, for less-developed countries from 1960–2010, to empirically assess whether the effect of growth in urban populations on emissions is symmetrical with the effect of decline. Findings indicate that the effect of growth/decline in urban populations on CO2 emissions is asymmetrical, where a decline in urbanization reduces emissions to a much greater degree than urbanization increases emissions. We hypothesize that this is at least in part because deurbanization is connected with disruptions to the production and distribution of goods and services and/or access to electricity and other energy sources. Our finding suggests that not only the absolute level of urbanization of nations matters for emissions, but also how the patterns of migration between rural and urban areas change over time. Future research should be mindful of the processes behind deurbanization when exploring socioeconomic drivers of CO2 emissions.

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<![CDATA[Explicit model predictive control for linear time-variant systems with application to double-lane-change maneuver]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c1028ddd5eed0c4842484c4

Explicit model predictive control (eMPC) has been proposed to reduce the huge computational complexity of MPC while maintaining the performance of MPC. Therefore, this control method has been more widely employed in the automotive industry than MPC. In this paper, an eMPC is designed to perform a double-lane-change (DLC) maneuver. This task has been employed to demonstrate the efficacy of controllers in an autonomous driving situation. In this sense, the proposed controller shows better performance than a driver model designed in CarSim at a high vehicle longitudinal velocity. The main contribution of this paper is to present an eMPC for discrete-time linear time-variant (LTV) systems so that the proposed controller can be robust against parameter variation. In a state-space representation of the vehicle, the longitudinal velocity of the vehicle is assumed to be a constant so that the whole system is linear time-invariant (LTI). However, it is inevitable that this velocity varies in an actual driving situation. Therefore, an eMPC controller is designed using an add-on unit to consider the varying parameter without modification of the eMPC solution. The CarSim simulation results of eMPC show enhanced performance compared to that of eMPC for the LTI system.

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<![CDATA[Gas injection and brine discharge in rock salt gas storage studied via numerical simulation]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c0841c3d5eed0c484fcaabd

Underground gas storage in rock salt is of great importance for peak-shaving and emergency gas supply. This paper addressed an actual rock salt underground gas storage facility in Jiangsu province, China, as the research project and carried out the following research centered on a detailed geological model, a salt cavern model and the process of gas injection and brine discharge. First, based on the theory of gas-liquid two-phase flow, the authors established a relationship between brine flow and natural gas bubbles under high pressure in the process of brine discharge. Second, the effect of pipe depth on the gas injection and brine discharge was simulated. The objective was mainly to choose the best combination of pipe depth and rate of brine discharge flow based on analysis of the relationship between the brine discharge pipe depth and the flow rate of the residual brine, and the optimal rate was given according to different distances. Third, the effect of residual brine on the gas injection and brine discharge was analyzed. The relationship curves between the maximum velocity on the surface of brine and the distance from the lower end of the brine discharge pipe to the bottom of the gas storage were obtained, and reasonable rates were suggested under different actual working conditions.

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<![CDATA[Bi-objective inventory allocation planning problem with supplier selection and carbon trading under uncertainty]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c23ff93d5eed0c4840929b1

Concern is growing that business enterprises focus primarily on their economic activities while disregarding the adverse environmental and social effects of these activities. To contribute to the literature on this matter, this study investigates a novel bi-objective inventory allocation planning problem with supplier selection and carbon trading across multiple periods under uncertainty. The concepts of a carbon credit price and a carbon cap are proposed to demonstrate the effect of carbon emissions costs on inventory allocation network costs. Demands of manufacturers, transport price, and defect rate of materials that should be rejected are set as random variables. We combine normalized normal constraint method, differential evolution algorithm, and uncertainty simulation to deal with the complex model. One representative case shows the effectiveness and practicability of this model and proposed method. The Pareto frontier is generated by solving the bi-objective model. We extend the results of numerical examples in large scale problems, and compare the solution method results with exact solutions. The environmental objective across the inventory allocation network varies with changes of the carbon cap and the carbon credit price.

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<![CDATA[Mapping future fire probability under climate change: Does vegetation matter?]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5b8685e040307c7363ff63b3

Understanding where and how fire patterns may change is critical for management and policy decision-making. To map future fire patterns, statistical correlative models are typically developed, which associate observed fire locations with recent climate maps, and are then applied to maps of future climate projections. A potential source of uncertainty is the common omission of static or dynamic vegetation as predictor variables. We therefore assessed the sensitivity of future fire projections to different combinations of vegetation maps used as explanatory variables in a statistically based fire modeling framework. We compared models without vegetation to models that incorporated static vegetation maps and that included output from a dynamic vegetation model that imposed three scenarios of fire and one scenario of land use change. We mapped projected future probability of all and large fires (> = 40 ha) under two climate scenarios in a heterogeneous study area spanning a large elevational gradient in the Sierra Nevada, California, USA. Results showed high model sensitivity to the treatment of vegetation as a predictor variable, particularly for models of large fire probability and for models accounting for wildfire effects on vegetation, which lowered future fire probability. Some scenarios resulted in opposite directional trends in the extent and probability of future fire, which could have serious implications for policy and management resource allocation. Model sensitivity resulted from high relative importance of vegetation variables in the baseline models and from large predicted changes in vegetation, particularly when simulating wildfire. Although statistical fire models often omit vegetation due to uncertainty, model sensitivity demonstrated here suggests a need to account for that uncertainty. Coupling statistical and processed based models may be a promising approach to reflect a more plausible range of scenarios.

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<![CDATA[Nondisclosure of Financial Interest in Clinical Practice Guideline Development: An Intractable Problem?]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da09ab0ee8fa60b76d87

In a Perspective linked to Stelfox and colleagues, Hilda Bastian discusses the challenges of improving transparency and management of financial conflicts of interest among committees that develop guidelines for medical practice.

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<![CDATA[The Cooking and Pneumonia Study (CAPS) in Malawi: A Nested Pilot of Photovoice Participatory Research Methodology]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9d6ab0ee8fa60b65db8

The Cooking and Pneumonia Study (CAPS) is a village-level randomised controlled trial of an advanced cookstove intervention to prevent pneumonia in children under the age of 5 in rural Malawi (www.capstudy.org). The trial offers a unique opportunity to gain understanding about the social and cultural factors that may facilitate sustained use of improved cookstoves. In January 2015, the use of Photovoice as a participatory research methodology was piloted at the CAPS Chikhwawa site. Photovoice is a photographic technique that allows communities (including women and marginalised groups) to share knowledge about their perspectives and priorities. Four households were given digital cameras and asked to collect images over 24–48 hours and were then interviewed on film about their selection. This resulted in over 400 images and a one hour long film that revealed community concerns and could be thematically analysed. The collection of interview data through film was useful for capturing discussion and was acceptable to participants. Photovoice is a feasible participatory research methodology that can play a valuable role in qualitative studies of improved cookstove adoption in challenging resource poor settings.

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