Task: Look at this academic article from Mechanical Engineering and use these questions to help you examine it.
Citations and References
Figures, Tables, Appendices and Acknowledgments
Now, compare your answers to those in the answer key below.
What journal was the article published in and what does this tell you about the type of information in the article?
It comes from a journal called Waste Biomass Valor. It is addressing a specialized audience.
What is the title of the article?
A New Proposal Using a Turbine in the Reactor with a Cavitation System in the Biodiesel Synthesis.
What are the authors’ (writers’) names and what information are you given about the authors?
The authors are Sergio L Ferreira, Delson L Modolo, Vicente L. Scalon, Luis E. A Sanchez, Elson Avallone and Wagner L. Polito. We know that Sergio L Ferreira, Delson L Modolo, Vicente L. Scalon are affiliated to the Mechanical Engineering Department at FEB, UNESP in Brazil. Elson Avallone is affiliated to the Sao Carlos Institute of Chemistry, Sao Paulo University in Brazil and Wagner L. Polito is affiliated to the Federal Institute of Education, Science and Technology of Sao Paulo, in Brazil. Correspondence to authors is through Sergio L Ferreira.
When was the article published?
This article was first published online in 2016 and in print in 2017.
What are the keywords and how could they help you?
The key words are: biodiesel, Ester content, turbine, cavitation system, electric consumption and vegetable oil. By looking at the key words in this article you can quickly see if it covers the topics you are interested in.
What information does the abstract give you and why is this useful?
The abstract explains that this research focuses on the investigation of the effect of a cavitation system with a turbine in comparison to the vigorous stirring on the process of biodiesel synthesis by the transesterification reaction using oil (triglycerides) and anhydrous ethanol. It briefly reports on results and clarifies that the properties analysed of biodiesel are congruent with the standard methods.
How many sections are there in the article – what are these sections called?
There are 6 sections in the article: Abstract, Introduction, Materials and Methods, Results and Discussion, Conclusions, References. Notice how this article follows a standard naming of the sections. This can help you identify what you are looking for very quickly.
Are there any subsections? Why are subsections important?
Yes, these subsections help you locate the specific points that you want to find.
3 subsections in Materials and Methods:
3 subsections in Results and Discussion:
What is the difference between an in text citation and a reference?
An in text citation tells you where the information comes from. The reference includes all the necessary details to locate the source where the information comes from.
How are the references organised?
In this case, references are alphabetically organised. However, please notice that each referencing system has its convention. When in doubt, check the library guidelines.
How many figures and how many tables are there in the article?
There are 8 figures in the article, these figures are really helpful to convey schematic representations of processes and to show lab results. There are 2 tables – tables are really useful to clearly and effectively present numeric information. Both tables and figures help to convey more complex information in a clear manner.
Is there an appendix? Is the information contained in the appendix important for your understanding of the article or does it just give you extra detail?
There is no appendix in this article, remember that the appendix adds extra information.
Can you find the acknowledgment section? What does it do?
There is no acknowledgement section in this article.