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  1. National soil organic carbon estimates can improve global estimates

    Global inventories of spatial and vertical distribution of soil organic carbon (SOC) stocks are being used in national and global initiatives targeted to mitigate climate change and land degradation impacts. Yet, national level high-resolution estimates of SOC stocks can be useful for improving the accuracy of global SOC inventories. We estimated spatially resolved SOC stocks of surface 0–30 cm and subsurface 30–100 cm layers at a spatial resolution of 30m in tropical Island, Sri Lanka using a legacy harmonized soil database of 122 soil profiles. The national estimates were compared with two global estimates derived from WISE30sec and SoilGrids250m. Themore » tropical Island (land area=64,610 km2) occupying 0.03% of global land area showed a considerable heterogeneity in SOC stocks ranging from 2.0-342.5 Mg ha -1 and 2.7-391.7 Mg ha -1 in the surface and subsurface soil layers, respectively. We found, elevation, precipitation and slope angle as main environmental controllers of the spatial distribution of SOC stocks under tropical climate. Incorporating the pedogenic information (derived from soil series level legacy map, soil orders and suborders) with environmental controllers resulted in better regression models of predicting surface (R 2=0.61) and subsurface (R 2=0.81) SOC stocks. Geographically weighted regression kriging derived maps of SOC stocks revealed that 0–100 cm soil layer of the tropical Island stored 500 Tg C contributing for 0.04% of the global SOC stocks. The validation results of our estimates showed low Mean Estimation Error (MEE: surface -1.6 and subsurface -1.6 Mg ha -1) and Root Mean Square Error (RMSE: surface 29.5 and subsurface 24.9 Mg ha -1) indicating a low bias and satisfactory predictions. The relative improvement of the prediction accuracy of the SOC stocks of our geospatial estimates in the 0–30 cm layer in comparison to SoilGrids250m and WISE30sec data derived SOC stocks were 51.7% and 35.2%, respectively. The SOC stocks predictions of the 30-100 cm soil layer showed even better relative improvement compared to SoilGrids250m (78.4%) and WISE30sec (57.4%) SOC estimates. Compared to estimates of total SOC stocks resulted in this study, WISE30sec data derived SOC stock maps showed 30% over estimation of the C stock in surface 0-30 cm (332 Tg C) and 41% overestimation in 30-100 cm layer (343 Tg C). The over estimation of total SOC stocks by the SoilGrids250 SOC stocks map for the surface 0-30 cm layer was 122% (567 Tg C) and for the 30-100 cm layer it was 209% (750 Tg C). We conclude that the fusion of legacy soil information of SOC stocks with appropriate environmental covariates and pedogenic information derived from legacy area-class soil maps at national level can produce more accurate inventories of spatial and vertical distribution of SOC stocks. These national inventories have a great potential of upgrading global inventories of SOC stocks.« less
  2. Overexpression of a serine hydroxymethyltransferase increases biomass production and reduces recalcitrance in the bioenergy crop Populus

    Cell wall recalcitrance is the major obstacle for plant biomass conversion to biofuels.
  3. Strongly coloured thiocyanate frameworks with perovskite-analogue structures

    We report the first examples of thiocyanate-based analogues of the cyanide Prussian blue compounds, M III [Bi(SCN) 6 ], M = Fe, Cr, Sc.
  4. X-ray Raman optical activity of chiral molecules

    Resonant and off-resonant Raman Optical Activity signals in the X-ray regime (XROA) are predicted.
  5. Cellulose solvent-based pretreatment for enhanced second-generation biofuel production: a review

    Cellulose solvent-based fractionation technologies can prove to be economical to enhance lignocellulosic biomass microbial conversion to fuels and chemicals.
  6. Reduced-order microstructure-sensitive protocols to rank-order the transition fatigue resistance of polycrystalline microstructures

    The transition fatigue regime between low cycle fatigue (LCF) and high cycle fatigue (HCF) is often addressed in the design and performance evaluation of load-bearing components used in many structural applications. Transition fatigue is characterized by elevated levels of local inelastic deformation in significant regions of the microstructure as compared to HCF. Typically, crystal plasticity finite element method (CPFEM) simulations are performed to model this phenomenon and to rank-order microstructures by their resistance to crack formation and early growth in the regime of transition fatigue. Unfortunately, these approaches require significant computational resources, inhibiting their use to explore novel materials formore » transition fatigue resistance. Reduced-order, microstructure-sensitive models are needed to accelerate the search for next-generation, fatigue-resistant materials. In a recent study, Paulson et al. (2018) extended the materials knowledge system (MKS) framework for rank-ordering the HCF resistance of polycrystalline microstructures. The efficacy of this approach lies in the reduced-dimensional representation of microstructures through 2-point spatial correlations and principal component analysis (PCA), in addition to the characterization of the HCF response with a small set of performance measures. In this work, these same protocols are critically evaluated for their applicability to rank-order the transition fatigue resistance of the same class of polycrystalline microstructures subjected to increased strain amplitudes. Success in this endeavor requires the formation of homogenization linkages that account for the significantly higher levels of local inelastic deformation and stress redistribution in transition fatigue as compared to HCF. A set of 12 α-titanium microstructures generated using the open access DREAM.3D software (Groeber and Jackson, 2014) are employed for this evaluation.« less
  7. Jolly green MOF: confinement and photoactivation of photosystem I in a metal–organic framework

    Photosystem I (PSI) is a ∼1000 kDa transmembrane protein that enables photoactivated charge separation with ∼1 V driving potential and ∼100% quantum efficiency during the photosynthetic process.
  8. Reduction of CO 2 by a masked two-coordinate cobalt( i ) complex and characterization of a proposed oxodicobalt( ii ) intermediate

    The detailed mechanism of CO 2 reduction by a cobalt( i ) complex is investigated using computations and kinetics.
  9. Determination of the structure and geometry of N-heterocyclic carbenes on Au(111) using high-resolution spectroscopy

    The geometry and bonding of N-heterocyclic carbenes to metal surfaces depends on the substituents on the N-atoms.
  10. Interface engineering for light-driven water oxidation: unravelling the passivating and catalytic mechanism in BiVO 4 overlayers

    Artificial photosynthetic approaches require the combination of light absorbers interfaced with overlayers that enhance charge transport and collection to perform catalytic reactions.
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