Environmental Engineering: Research @ Brunel

Articles (co)written by C&EE Brunel staff

Below are recent articles (co-)authored by Brunel academic staff. Please click the title of the article to access the full-text.

  • How Extreme Events in China Would Be Affected by Global Warming-Insights From a Bias-Corrected CMIP6 Ensemble
    Guo, J.H. et al
    Earths future, Vol 11, No 4, Art No. e2022EF003347 (Apr 2023)
    In recent years, concurrent climate extreme conditions (e.g., hot-dry, cold-dry, hot-wet, and cold-wet) have led to various unprecedented natural disasters (e.g., floods, landslide, wildfire, droughts, etc.), causing significant damages to human societies and ecosystems. This is especially true for China where many unprecedented natural disasters have been reported due to the recent warming in local climate. In this paper, we focus on the issue of ultra-extreme events (1% threshold) and address how future global warming would affect the climate extreme conditions in China. Here, we use a downscaled and bias-corrected CMIP6 ensemble under two continuously-warming scenarios to address this question. The results show that, under both SSP245 and SSP585 scenarios, extreme hot conditions would become dominant in most regions of China and some regions are likely to experience over 50 extreme hot days at future warming levels. Both extreme hot events and extreme wet events would drop by above 25% from 2.0 degrees C to 1.5 degrees C global warming level, particularly under the SSP245 scenario. Overall, the results suggest that slowing down the global warming can reduce the frequency of concurrent climate extreme conditions in China, highlighting the importance of immediate action toward carbon emission reduction.

  • Resilient Hospital Design: From Crimea War to COVID-19
    Tang, K.K.
    Herd-health environments research & design journal, (Early access, May 2023)
    Objectives: Serious COVID-19 nosocomial infection has demonstrated a need to design our health services in a different manner. Triggered by the current crisis and the interest in rapid deployable hospital, this article discusses how hospital building layouts can be improved to streamline the patient pathways and thus to reduce the risk of hospital-related infections...Methods: Through case study investigations, this article evaluates the risk of nosocomial infections of airborne transmissions under different building layouts, and this provides essential data for infection control in the new-build or refurbished healthcare projects. Results: Improved hospital layout can be achieved through reconfiguration of rooms and concourse. Design interventions through evidence-based infection risk analysis can reduce congestion and provide extra separation and compartmentalization which will contribute the reduced nosocomial infection rate. Conclusions: A resilient hospital shall be able to cope with unexpected circumstances and be flexible to change when new challenges arise, without compromising the safety and well-being of frontline medical staff and other patients...

  • 3D printing of limestone-calcined clay cement: A review of its potential implementation in the construction industry
    Al-Noaimat, Y. A. et al
    Results in engineering, Vol 18, Art No. 101115 (Jun 2023)
    The rapid development in 3D printing applications requires exploring a sustainable printable mixture to decrease the environmental impact induced by the existing Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC) mixtures and enable 3D printing technology to reach its peak efficiency. The high-volume substitution of OPC with supplementary cementitious materials (SCMs) is of significant interest as a promising solution for developing low-carbon feedstock for 3D printing. Yet, those materials share the problem of limited availability...The findings of this review show that 3D printed LC3 has a similar hardened performance and better microstructure than OPC system. Moreover, cast LC3 system has 30-50% lower environmental impacts depending on the replacement level and better economic feasibility than OPC. Therefore, making it a suitable feedstock for the innovative manufacturing technology of 3D printing.

  • Selectively enzymatic conversion of wood constituents with white and brown rot fungi
    Qi, J.Y. et al
    Industrial crops and products, Vol 199, Art No. 116703 (Sept 2023)
    Lignocellulosic material is a natural renewable resource and can provide great potential in bioconversion and bioenergy production. This work studied the bioconversion processes of Pinus yunnanensis with white and brown rot fungi treatment, namely T. versicolor, G. trabeum and R. placenta, aiming to clarify the mechanism of enzy-matic process and fungi's intrinsic selectivity in fungal pretreatment during various conversion stages. The results showed that fungi achieved the decomposition and conversion of biomass through the generation of enzymes as well as their action within wood...

  • Fungal Selectivity and Biodegradation Effects by White and Brown Rot Fungi for Wood Biomass Pretreatment
    Qi, J.Y. et al
    Polymers, Vol 15, No 8, Art No. 1957 (Apr 2023)
    This paper aims to clarify the actual and precise selectivity of white and brown rot fungi and the biodegradation effects on different tree species. Softwood (Pinus yunnanensis and Cunninghamia lanceolata) and hardwood (Populus yunnanensis and Hevea brasiliensis) were subjected to a biopretreating process by white rot fungus Trametes versicolor, and brown rot fungi Gloeophyllum trabeum and Rhodonia placenta with various conversion periods...

  • Interpreting the Dynamic Nexus between Green Energy, Employment, Fossil Fuel Energy, and Human Development Index: A Panel Data Investigation
    Azam, A. et al
    Energies, Vol 16, No 7, Art No. 3132
    This study examines the dynamic connection between green energy, employment, fossil fuel energy, and human development index including additional variables such as education, life expectancy, and poverty in panel data of 30 developing countries from 1990-2017. The results reveal that all variables are co-integrated. The results of regression analysis indicate that green energy, education, life expectancy, and employment increase the human development index, but fossil fuel energy and poverty decrease the human development index by -0.016 and 0.023%...

  • The deterioration state and degradation mechanism of historical timber structures from the Yunnan Military Academy
    Dong, G. et al
    Wood material science & engineering, (Early access, April 2023)
    Wood structural timbers at three locations (eave, beam frame, and column) were exploited to elucidate the deterioration state and mechanism of historical timber structures from the Yunnan Military Academy (Kunming, Yunnan Province). The morphological structures, physical and mechanical characteristics, and chemical components were measured to illustrate the deterioration state and elucidate the degradation mechanism. The results demonstrated that the deterioration of structural timbers was closely dependent on their locations in the architecture...

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