Sample records for assessment open issues

  1. Status of thermalhydraulic modelling and assessment: Open issues

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bestion, D.; Barre, F. [CEA, Grenoble (France)


    This paper presents the status of the physical modelling in present codes used for Nuclear Reactor Thermalhydraulics (TRAC, RELAP 5, CATHARE, ATHLET,...) and attempts to list the unresolved or partially resolved issues. First, the capabilities and limitations of present codes are presented. They are mainly known from a synthesis of the assessment calculations performed for both separate effect tests and integral effect tests. It is also interesting to list all the assumptions and simplifications which were made in the establishment of the system of equations and of the constitutive relations. Many of the present limitations are associated to physical situations where these assumptions are not valid. Then, recommendations are proposed to extend the capabilities of these codes.

  2. Matrix Diffusion for Performance Assessment - Experimental Evidence, Modelling Assumptions and Open Issues

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jakob, A


    In this report a comprehensive overview on the matrix diffusion of solutes in fractured crystalline rocks is presented. Some examples from observations in crystalline bedrock are used to illustrate that matrix diffusion indeed acts on various length scales. Fickian diffusion is discussed in detail followed by some considerations on rock porosity. Due to the fact that the dual-porosity medium model is a very common and versatile method for describing solute transport in fractured porous media, the transport equations and the fundamental assumptions, approximations and simplifications are discussed in detail. There is a variety of geometrical aspects, processes and events which could influence matrix diffusion. The most important of these, such as, e.g., the effect of the flow-wetted fracture surface, channelling and the limited extent of the porous rock for matrix diffusion etc., are addressed. In a further section open issues and unresolved problems related to matrix diffusion are mentioned. Since matrix diffusion is one of the key retarding processes in geosphere transport of dissolved radionuclide species, matrix diffusion was consequently taken into account in past performance assessments of radioactive waste repositories in crystalline host rocks. Some issues regarding matrix diffusion are site-specific while others are independent of the specific situation of a planned repository for radioactive wastes. Eight different performance assessments from Finland, Sweden and Switzerland were considered with the aim of finding out how matrix diffusion was addressed, and whether a consistent picture emerges regarding the varying methodology of the different radioactive waste organisations. In the final section of the report some conclusions are drawn and an outlook is given. An extensive bibliography provides the reader with the key papers and reports related to matrix diffusion. (author)

  3. Open Issues in Evolutionary Robotics. (United States)

    Silva, Fernando; Duarte, Miguel; Correia, Luís; Oliveira, Sancho Moura; Christensen, Anders Lyhne


    One of the long-term goals in evolutionary robotics is to be able to automatically synthesize controllers for real autonomous robots based only on a task specification. While a number of studies have shown the applicability of evolutionary robotics techniques for the synthesis of behavioral control, researchers have consistently been faced with a number of issues preventing the widespread adoption of evolutionary robotics for engineering purposes. In this article, we review and discuss the open issues in evolutionary robotics. First, we analyze the benefits and challenges of simulation-based evolution and subsequent deployment of controllers versus evolution on real robotic hardware. Second, we discuss specific evolutionary computation issues that have plagued evolutionary robotics: (1) the bootstrap problem, (2) deception, and (3) the role of genomic encoding and genotype-phenotype mapping in the evolution of controllers for complex tasks. Finally, we address the absence of standard research practices in the field. We also discuss promising avenues of research. Our underlying motivation is the reduction of the current gap between evolutionary robotics and mainstream robotics, and the establishment of evolutionary robotics as a canonical approach for the engineering of autonomous robots.

  4. Open Praxis vol. 8 issue 4

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Inés Gil-Jaurena (ed., Various authors


    Full Text Available This last Open Praxis issue in 2016 is an open issue that includes four research papers, two innovative practice papers and two book reviews. It also includes the list of reviewers that have collaborated in volume 8.

  5. Openness in participation, assessment, and policy making upon issues of environment and environmental health: a review of literature and recent project results. (United States)

    Pohjola, Mikko V; Tuomisto, Jouni T


    Issues of environment and environmental health involve multiple interests regarding e.g. political, societal, economical, and public concerns represented by different kinds of organizations and individuals. Not surprisingly, stakeholder and public participation has become a major issue in environmental and environmental health policy and assessment. The need for participation has been discussed and reasoned by many, including environmental legislators around the world. In principle, participation is generally considered as desirable and the focus of most scholars and practitioners is on carrying out participation, and making participation more effective. In practice also doubts regarding the effectiveness and importance of participation exist among policy makers, assessors, and public, leading even to undermining participatory practices in policy making and assessment.There are many possible purposes for participation, and different possible models of interaction between assessment and policy. A solid conceptual understanding of the interrelations between participation, assessment, and policy making is necessary in order to design and implement effective participatory practices. In this paper we ask, do current common conceptions of assessment, policy making and participation provide a sufficient framework for achieving effective participation? This question is addresses by reviewing the range of approaches to participation in assessment and policy making upon issues of environment and environmental health and some related insights from recent research projects, INTARESE and BENERIS.Openness, considered e.g. in terms of a) scope of participation, b) access to information, c) scope of contribution, d) timing of openness, and e) impact of contribution, provides a new perspective to the relationships between participation, assessment and policy making. Participation, assessment, and policy making form an inherently intertwined complex with interrelated objectives and

  6. Open statistical issues in particle physics


    Lyons, Louis


    Many statistical issues arise in the analysis of Particle Physics experiments. We give a brief introduction to Particle Physics, before describing the techniques used by Particle Physicists for dealing with statistical problems, and also some of the open statistical questions.

  7. The AGN phenomenon: open issues

    CERN Document Server

    Beckmann, Volker


    The aim of this short paper is to motivate and encourage research in the field of Active Galactic Nuclei (AGN). Here we summarize the main open questions concerning the central engine. Is the central black hole rapidly spinning and can we prove this? What is the dominant accretion mechanism in AGN? Why do some AGN form jets while others don't and how do the jets originate? What keeps jets collimated out to distances of 100 kpc? Is the emission of blazars dominated rather by synchrotron self-Compton or by external Compton processes? Which parameters are important in the unified model? We outline the status of related research, formulate the questions and try to hint at research projects able to tackle these fundamental topics. Deep surveys, polarization measurements, improved models, faster and more accurate simulations as well as bridging the gap in the MeV range can be part of the tools to bring us closer to an understanding of AGN.

  8. Assessment of Issue Handling Efficiency

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Luijten, B.; Visser, J.; Zaidman, A.


    We mined the issue database of GNOME to assess how issues are handled. How many issues are submitted and resolved? Does the backlog grow or decrease? How fast are issues resolved? Does issue resolution speed increase or decrease over time? In which subproject are issues handled most efficiently? To

  9. Methylmercury risk assessment issues

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lipfert, F.W. [Brookhaven National Lab., Upton, NY (United States); Saroff, L. [USDOE, Washington, DC (United States)


    This paper reviews the general background of health risks associated with mercury (Hg), primarily methylmercury (MeHg), with a view towards application to advanced technologies that could reduce any contributions from coal combustion. The need for accurate assessment of such risks is discussed, since Hg is now widely dispersed in the environment and cannot easily be eliminated. The primary pathway of MeHg intake is through eating contaminated fish. The issues of concern include identification of critical health outcomes (various neurological indices) and their confounding factors, accurate assessment of MeHg intake rates, and appropriate use of dose-response functions. Ultimately, such information will be used to evaluate alternative coal combustion systems.

  10. Open Issues in Object-Oriented Programming

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Madsen, Ole Lehrmann


    We discuss a number of open issues within object-oriented programming. The central mechanisms of object-oriented programming appeared with Simula, developed more than 30 years ago; these include class, subclass, virtual function, active object and the first application framework, Class Simulation....... The core parts of object-oriented programming should be well understood, but there are still a large number of issues where there is no consensus. The term object-orientation has been applied to many subjects, such as analysis, design implementation, data modeling in databases, and distribution....... In this paper the term object-oriented programming is meant to cover all these subjects, since one of the advantages of object-orientation is that it provides a unified approach to these subjects. The issues being discussed in this paper are the following: modeling versus reuse as the main benefit of object...

  11. Open Praxis, volumen 4 issue 1

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Editor Open Praxis


    Full Text Available - Correlation between Performance and Quality of Academic Staff in National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN Olubiyi Adeniyi Adewale, Timothy Olugbenga Ajadi & Juliet O.Inegbedion (1-7 - Benchmarking E-Learning in UK Universities: Lessons from and for the International Context Paul Bacsich (9-17 - Structural equation modelling of factors affecting success in student’s performance in ODL-Programs: Extending Quality Management concepts Per Bergamin, Simone Ziska & Rudolf Groner (18-25 - Quality Assurance in Open and Distance Learning in India S.K. Gandhe (26-32 - Leading innovative approaches to the financial crisis Sarah Guri-Rosenblit (33-38 - TOWARDS KNOWLEDGE BASED ECONOMIES - the contribution of open distance learning strategies in addressing equity and inclusiveness issues in small states like Mauritius Jheengut (39-63 - New Approaches to Quality Assurance in the Changing World of Higher Education Maria Jose Lemaitre (64-75 - Entrepreneurship: New Challenges for Higher Education Institutions Josep Lladós (76-87 - A Psychometric Study in the Performance of Distance learners Ravi K Mahajan (88-94 - Managing Quality Assurance for Distance Learning Programs in Malaysia Mohd Ismail Ramli (95-101 - Employability and lifelong learning Hazel Simmons-McDonald (102-113

  12. Open Praxis, volumen 0 issue 1

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Editor Open Praxis


    Full Text Available Table of Contents - Providing Effective Feedback Online Zane Berge & Mauri Collins (1-10 - Mobile Technologies and the Future of Global Education Rory McGreal (11-16 - Cross-Border Higher Education through E-Learning: Issues and Opportunities Kumiko Aoki (17-25 - Open and Distance Education in the Global Environment: Opportunities for Collaboration Ellie Chambers (26-33 - Global Trade in Educational Services: Implications for Open and Distance Learning (ODL S. Savithri & K. Murugan (34-44 - Interactive Computer Simulation to Support Teaching of Biology in Distance Learning Basuki Hardjojo, Diki, S. Nurmawati & Susi Sulistiana (45-54 - An Analysis of Learning Styles of Distance Learners at the Institute of Education Development, Universiti Teknologi Mara, Malaysia Syed Jamal Abdul Nasir bin Syed Mohamad, & Ahmad Saat Daud Mohamad (55-61 - Application of Cognitive Dissonance Theory to Reduce Dropouts in Distance Education System G. Radhakrishna & Anurag Saxena (62-66 - Effects of Globalisation on Education and Culture S. Chinnammai (67-72 - Learning Beyond Boundary: The Quest Of a Global Researcher Gomata Varanasi (73-78 - Computer Technology for Literacy and Empowerment of Masses in Developing Countries Piyush Swami & Sasi Benzigar (79-84

  13. Issues in the development of open access to research data

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wessels, Bridgette; Finn, Rachel L.; Linde, Peter; Mazzetti, Paolo; Nativi, Stefano; Riley, Susan; Smallwood, Rod; Taylor, Mark J.; Tsoukala, Victoria; Wadhwa, Kush; Wyatt, S.


    This paper explores key issues in the development of open access to research data. The use of digital means for developing, storing and manipulating data is creating a focus on ‘data-driven science’. One aspect of this focus is the development of ‘open access’ to research data. Open access to resear

  14. Open Praxis, volumen 1 issue 1

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Editor Open Praxis


    Full Text Available Table of Contents - A Study on the Importance of Fostering Trust in a Distance Learning Community Sónia Sousa, David Lamas & Brian Hudson (1-10 - Teacher Upgrading through Distance Education in a South African Context C. G. Kruger & Prof. E. J. Spamer (11-19 - An Investigation into Delivery of On-Line Courses within an Early Childhood Teacher Education Distance Programme in New Zealand Susan E. Smart (20-29 - Transnational Online Project Management Curriculum Model for Engineering Students Enrique Benimeli Bofarull, Anke Muendler, Peter Haber (30-39 - China Rural Distance Education and Construction of the New Countryside Li Fanghong & Zeng Yichun (40-46 - E-Learning in Japan: Steam Locomotive on Shinkansen Ali E. Ozkul, Ph.D. & Kumiko Aoki, Ph.D.  (47-55 - Widening Access to Higher Education: Open and Distance Learning in Higher Education Setting in Indonesia Paulina Pannen (56-65 - Research and Development of a Costing Toolkit for Distance, Flexible and ICT-Based Education for Teacher Development in Africa Frank R J Banks (66-75 - Fostering E-Learning in Medical Education: The Eurovacc Team Experience Guilherme Andrade Marson, Nathalie Debard, Jean-Pierre Kraehenbuhl, Pascal Py, Yan Cornneille, Laurent Richard, Alain Meystre (76-86 - Program Upgrading Teachers in Education Irene Hardy de Gómez (87-95 - ICT based learning strategies for Educating nomads Yogesh Kulkarni & Dr. Madhav Gaikwad (96-102 - Information and Communication Technology and Distance Education in Brazil Marta de Campos Maia & Fernando de Souza Meirelles (103-112 - ICDE’s interview with Susan D’Antoni, UNESCO International Institute for Educational Planning (IIEP (113-117 - ICDE Task Force Open Educational Resources – Inquiry Results (118-125 - 22nd ICDE – World Conference on Distance Education: Facts and figures (126-131

  15. The Openness of the University of the Philippines Open University: Issues and Prospects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Fe Villamejor-Mendoza


    Full Text Available This paper is a self-reflection on the state of openness of the University of the Philippines Open University (UPOU. An exploratory and descriptive study, it aims not only to define the elements of openness of UPOU, but also to unravel the causes and solutions to the issues and concerns that limit its options to becoming a truly open university. It is based on four parameters of openness, which are widely universal in the literature, e.g., open admissions, open curricula, distance education at scale, and the co-creation, sharing and use of open educational resources (OER. It draws from the perception survey among peers, which the author conducted in UPOU in July and August 2012. It also relies on relevant secondary materials on the subject.

  16. Sustainable Assessment and Evaluation Strategies for Open and Distance Learning (United States)

    Okonkwo, Charity Akuadi


    This paper first presents an overview of the concepts of assessment and evaluation in Open and Distance Learning (ODL) environment. The large numbers of students and numerous courses make assessment and evaluation very difficult and administrative nightmare at Distance Learning (DL) institutions. These challenges informed exploring issues relating…

  17. The Practical Impact of Intellectual Assessment Issues. (United States)

    Braden, Jeffery P.


    School psychologists spend more time on assessment than in other activities. Attempts to establish three links between issues and practice for intellectual assessment: technologies for intellectual assessment, methods of intellectual assessment, and theories of intellectual assessment. Argues that practitioners should heed research showing strong…

  18. EEG/MEG Source Imaging: Methods, Challenges, and Open Issues


    Katrina Wendel; Outi Väisänen; Jaakko Malmivuo; Gencer, Nevzat G.; Bart Vanrumste; Piotr Durka; Ratko Magjarević; Selma Supek; Mihail Lucian Pascu; Hugues Fontenelle; Rolando Grave de Peralta Menendez


    We present the four key areas of research—preprocessing, the volume conductor, the forward problem, and the inverse problem—that affect the performance of EEG and MEG source imaging. In each key area we identify prominent approaches and methodologies that have open issues warranting further investigation within the community, challenges associated with certain techniques, and algorithms necessitating clarification of their implications. More than providing definitive answers we aim to identif...

  19. Improving Open Access through Prior Learning Assessment (United States)

    Yin, Shuangxu; Kawachi, Paul


    This paper explores and presents new data on how to improve open access in distance education through using prior learning assessments. Broadly there are three types of prior learning assessment (PLAR): Type-1 for prospective students to be allowed to register for a course; Type-2 for current students to avoid duplicating work-load to gain…

  20. Socioeconomic assessment: issues, status, and plans

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Boryczka, M.K.


    Numerous public meetings and hearings have been held in Texas, Mississippi, Louisiana and Utah on the issue of siting a nuclear waste repository in salt. Citizens in these potential site areas have raised many questions about how this facility will affect their quality of life. Questions about population and economic changes have been of particular concern. In developing a socioeconomic program, these issues and others have been an integral part of Battelle's socioeconomic studies. The three elements of Battelle's socioeconomic program are comprised of three elements: impact assessment, impact mitigation and community development, and impact monitoring. In addition, our approach to assessing socioeconomic impacts for the environmental assessment (EA) required by the Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1982 are described. Since the EA analysis will address many of the issues raised in the site areas, these concerns will be elaborated on. Finally, various techniques for managing socioeconomic impacts will be presented. 6 references, 1 figure.

  1. Open Data for Territorial Specialization Assessment Territorial Specialization in Attracting Local Development Funds: an Assessment. Procedure Based on Open Data and Open Tools

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giuseppe Las Casas


    Full Text Available The New Cohesion Policy opens to an integrated place-based approach for the improvement of territorial and social cohesion. The issue of territorial impact assessment of regional development policies highlight that data availability, open access to datasets in “near real-time”, participation, knowledge sharing, assumed importance within the development planning process. The contribution of ‘open data’ appears to be mature and in this paper we present an application of spatial analysis techniques for the evaluation of spatial effects of EU funds starting form open data by open-coesione. The application regards an internal areas of Basilicata Region: the Agri Valley. A complex contests in which an environmental and agricultural traditional vocation conflicts with a recent development of oil extraction industries. Conclusions regard further applications and perspectives for improving and supporting regional development planning considering the exploitation of open data sources and spatial analysis.

  2. LHC Databases on the Grid: Achievements and Open Issues

    CERN Document Server

    Vaniachine, A V


    To extract physics results from the recorded data, the LHC experiments are using Grid computing infrastructure. The event data processing on the Grid requires scalable access to non-event data (detector conditions, calibrations, etc.) stored in relational databases. The database-resident data are critical for the event data reconstruction processing steps and often required for physics analysis. This paper reviews LHC experience with database technologies for the Grid computing. List of topics includes: database integration with Grid computing models of the LHC experiments; choice of database technologies; examples of database interfaces; distributed database applications (data complexity, update frequency, data volumes and access patterns); scalability of database access in the Grid computing environment of the LHC experiments. The review describes areas in which substantial progress was made and remaining open issues.

  3. Open-system dynamics of entanglement: a key issues review. (United States)

    Aolita, Leandro; de Melo, Fernando; Davidovich, Luiz


    One of the greatest challenges in the fields of quantum information processing and quantum technologies is the detailed coherent control over each and every constituent of quantum systems with an ever increasing number of particles. Within this endeavor, harnessing of many-body entanglement against the detrimental effects of the environment is a major pressing issue. Besides being an important concept from a fundamental standpoint, entanglement has been recognized as a crucial resource for quantum speed-ups or performance enhancements over classical methods. Understanding and controlling many-body entanglement in open systems may have strong implications in quantum computing, quantum simulations of many-body systems, secure quantum communication or cryptography, quantum metrology, our understanding of the quantum-to-classical transition, and other important questions of quantum foundations.In this paper we present an overview of recent theoretical and experimental efforts to underpin the dynamics of entanglement under the influence of noise. Entanglement is thus taken as a dynamic quantity on its own, and we survey how it evolves due to the unavoidable interaction of the entangled system with its surroundings. We analyze several scenarios, corresponding to different families of states and environments, which render a very rich diversity of dynamical behaviors.In contrast to single-particle quantities, like populations and coherences, which typically vanish only asymptotically in time, entanglement may disappear at a finite time. In addition, important classes of entanglement display an exponential decay with the number of particles when subject to local noise, which poses yet another threat to the already-challenging scaling of quantum technologies. Other classes, however, turn out to be extremely robust against local noise. Theoretical results and recent experiments regarding the difference between local and global decoherence are summarized. Control and

  4. Seismic hazard assessment: Issues and alternatives (United States)

    Wang, Z.


    Seismic hazard and risk are two very important concepts in engineering design and other policy considerations. Although seismic hazard and risk have often been used inter-changeably, they are fundamentally different. Furthermore, seismic risk is more important in engineering design and other policy considerations. Seismic hazard assessment is an effort by earth scientists to quantify seismic hazard and its associated uncertainty in time and space and to provide seismic hazard estimates for seismic risk assessment and other applications. Although seismic hazard assessment is more a scientific issue, it deserves special attention because of its significant implication to society. Two approaches, probabilistic seismic hazard analysis (PSHA) and deterministic seismic hazard analysis (DSHA), are commonly used for seismic hazard assessment. Although PSHA has been pro-claimed as the best approach for seismic hazard assessment, it is scientifically flawed (i.e., the physics and mathematics that PSHA is based on are not valid). Use of PSHA could lead to either unsafe or overly conservative engineering design or public policy, each of which has dire consequences to society. On the other hand, DSHA is a viable approach for seismic hazard assessment even though it has been labeled as unreliable. The biggest drawback of DSHA is that the temporal characteristics (i.e., earthquake frequency of occurrence and the associated uncertainty) are often neglected. An alternative, seismic hazard analysis (SHA), utilizes earthquake science and statistics directly and provides a seismic hazard estimate that can be readily used for seismic risk assessment and other applications. ?? 2010 Springer Basel AG.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charity Akuadi OKONKWO


    Full Text Available This paper first presents an overview of the concepts of assessment and evaluation in Open and Distance Learning (ODL environment. The large numbers of students and numerous courses make assessment and evaluation very difficult and administrative nightmare at Distance Learning (DL institutions. These challenges informed exploring issues relating to assessment and evaluation like the development and use of question bank and deployment of technology in assessment with emphasis on strategies for sustainability. Assessment in ODL, unlike in the Conventional system where students have a range of opportunities to demonstrate their learning periodically, depends on formal assessment tasks only. Thus, for validity to be high in ODL assessment, assessment must provide the appropriate situation possible for measuring the specific abilities being measured. Reliability is maximized when the assessment items are many; the items are not too easy or too difficult for the candidates; and the marking consistent. Evaluation depends on Tutor Marked Assignments (TMAs and End of Semester Examination (ESE in ODL system. Large question/item bank (with reliable and valid questions from which items are picked to constitute test are needed. Attempts are made to provide argument for the use of computer as a viable option for sustainable assessment based on its sustainable features especially for ODL institutions with a large number of students’ population. It is hoped that these strategies if adopted have the potentials to eliminate some of the challenges that ODL institutions are currently facing in assessment. It will also strengthen quality assurance mechanism in ODL institutions.

  6. Moderate alcohol consumption and cardiovascular risk reduction: open issues

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simona Costanzo


    Full Text Available

    Background: The inverse relationship between low to moderate alcohol consumption and several favorable health outcomes has been well established in many epidemiological studies and meta-analyses. However, several questions still remain controversial.

    Aims: To discuss a number of open questions relating to the healthy effect of a moderate intake of alcohol (especially wine on cardiovascular disease and total mortality. This will be based on findings from the literature, with a particular emphasis on meta-analyses.

    Results and Conclusion: The role of different alcoholic beverages, age and sex, confounding, former drinkers and study design has been discussed. Whether wine is better than beer or spirits, though suggestive, remains to be established. Cardiovascular morbidity and total mortality is significantly reduced both in men and women who are regular drinkers of low amounts of alcohol; however, the predicted protection in women disappears at lower doses than in men. The primary protection of alcohol decreases after adjustment for known variables, thus confirming the importance of confounding in assessing drinking effects, but it remains significant and of undoubted public health value. As the cardiovascular protection by moderate alcohol consumption might have been unduly overestimated by inclusion in control groups of former drinkers, we compared studies that used as a reference group the category of no alcohol intake and/or formally excluded former drinkers with studies which did not: the protection was indeed somewhat lower in the former than in the latter studies, but was still statistically significant. We conclude that the dose-response relationship between alcohol intake and cardiovascular risk or total mortality, consistently described by J-shaped curves, can be reasonably attributed to a combination of both real beneficial (at lower doses and harmful (at higher doses

  7. Open Assessment of Proofs in Litigation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kaltrina Zekolli


    Full Text Available The key of existence and success in all domains of life to the entity of justice is the thorough compliance to the truth and justice. Therefore when a certain right is violated, liable or challenged entrusted to solve that, are the institutions of justice, rather the courts. Courts are competent to find the right path towards the truth applying different methods with intention to satisfy the justice. In this paper special attention we dedicated to the method of open assessment of proofs in litigation, that in fact is the subject of this research.

  8. Environmental and energy issues in an open economy (United States)

    Oh, Kyungsoo

    The environmental and energy consequences of globalization have become an important topic of debate. My dissertation examines the interaction between environmental and energy issues and international trade. Specifically, I investigate environmental regulations and policy in an open economy. In the first chapter, I analyze how an environmental tax on pollution from consumption affects trade flows and welfare in an open economy. In particular, I argue that the effect of an environmental tax on the direction of trade flows depends on who is directly burdened by the regulation (consumers or producers) regardless of who is the polluter. In the case of pollution generated by consumers, a tax on consumers who are the polluters tends to increase exports and reduce imports of dirty goods. This result is the opposite of the well-known effect arising from taxes on pollution-intensive industries. Stringent environmental regulations on pollution-intensive industries diminishes exports and increases imports of dirty industries. In terms of welfare, I show the importance of targeting the policy instrument to the correct source of pollution. Assuming pollution is caused by the consumption of a good, a production tax has a weak effect on increasing welfare through reducing pollution. Furthermore, welfare can fall if the production tax ratio is too high, leading to reduced national income. The second chapter is motivated by recent trends in the U.S. economy: increasing imports from China, decreasing energy consumption, and increasing output. There are two primary theoretical approaches related to the relationship between energy use in U.S. manufacturing and increasing imports from China: Heckscher-Ohlin (H-O) trade theory and the Pollution Haven Hypothesis (PHH). These two frameworks generate opposite predictions about the relationship between these trends. H-O theory suggests that with increased Chinese import penetration, U.S. manufacturing should move toward more energy

  9. GeoDCAT-AP: Use cases and open issues




    This paper illustrates some issues and use cases identified during the design and implementation of GeoDCAT-AP, a metadata profile aiming to provide a representation of geospatial metadata compliant with the DCAT application profile for European data portals (DCAT-AP). In particular, the paper focuses on those issues that may have a possible relevance also outside the geospatial domain, covering topics concerning metadata profile-based negotiation, publishing metadata on the Web, represen...

  10. 75 FR 18957 - Open Meeting of Taxpayer Advocacy Panel Notice Improvement Issue Committee (United States)


    ... Internal Revenue Service Open Meeting of Taxpayer Advocacy Panel Notice Improvement Issue Committee AGENCY... Taxpayer Advocacy Panel Notice Improvement Issue Committee will be conducted. The Taxpayer Advocacy Panel....C. App. (1988) that an open meeting of the Taxpayer Advocacy Panel Notice Improvement...

  11. Mapping the hinterland: Data issues in open science. (United States)

    Grand, Ann; Wilkinson, Clare; Bultitude, Karen; Winfield, Alan F T


    Open science is a practice in which the scientific process is shared completely and in real time. It offers the potential to support information flow, collaboration and dialogue among professional and non-professional participants. Using semi-structured interviews and case studies, this research investigated the relationship between open science and public engagement. This article concentrates on three particular areas of concern that emerged: first, how to effectively contextualise and narrate information to render it accessible, as opposed to simply available; second, concerns about data quantity and quality; and third, concerns about the skills required for effective contextualisation, mapping and interpretation of information.

  12. Openings: On the Journal of Homosexuality, Volume 1, Issue 1. (United States)

    Gotkin, Kevin


    This article serves as one of the supplementary pieces of this special issue on "Mapping Queer Bioethics," in which we take a solipsistic turn to "map" the Journal of Homosexuality itself. Here, the author examines Volume 1, Issue 1 of the Journal of Homosexuality and asks whether the journal's first contributors might reveal a historically problematic relationship whereby the categories of front-line LGBT health advocates in the 1970s might be incommensurate with the post-AIDS, queer politics that would follow in decades to come.

  13. Open heavy flavour production: conceptual framework and implementation issues

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tung Wuki [Department of Physics and Astronomy, Michigan State University, MI (United States)]. E-mail:; Kretzer, Stefan; Schmidt, Carl [Department of Physics and Astronomy, Michigan State University, MI (United States)


    Heavy flavour production is an important quantum chromodynamics (QCD) process both in its own right and as a key component of precision global QCD analysis. Apparent disagreements between fixed-flavour scheme calculations of b-production rate with experimental measurements in hadro-, lepto- and photo-production provide new impetus for a thorough examination of the theory and phenomenology of this process. We review existing methods of calculation and place them in the context of the general perturbative QCD framework of Collins. A distinction is drawn between scheme dependence and implementation issues related to quark mass effects near threshold. We point out a so far overlooked kinematic constraint on the threshold behaviour, which greatly simplifies the variable flavour number scheme. This obviates the need for the elaborate existing prescriptions and leads to robust predictions. It can facilitate the study of current issues on heavy flavour production as well as precision global QCD analysis. (author)

  14. Assessing Social Value in Open Data Initiatives: A Framework

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gianluigi Viscusi


    Full Text Available Open data initiatives are characterized, in several countries, by a great extension of the number of data sets made available for access by public administrations, constituencies, businesses and other actors, such as journalists, international institutions and academics, to mention a few. However, most of the open data sets rely on selection criteria, based on a technology-driven perspective, rather than a focus on the potential public and social value of data to be published. Several experiences and reports confirm this issue, such as those of the Open Data Census. However, there are also relevant best practices. The goal of this paper is to investigate the different dimensions of a framework suitable to support public administrations, as well as constituencies, in assessing and benchmarking the social value of open data initiatives. The framework is tested on three initiatives, referring to three different countries, Italy, the United Kingdom and Tunisia. The countries have been selected to provide a focus on European and Mediterranean countries, considering also the difference in legal frameworks (civic law vs. common law countries.

  15. Economic Journal in Russia: Quality Assessment Issues

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ol’ga Valentinovna Tret’yakova


    Full Text Available The paper attempts to assess economic journals included in the List of peer-reviewed scientific journals and editions that are authorized to publish the principal research findings of doctoral (candidate’s dissertations (the VAK List, it was established by the Decision of the Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation and entered into force on December 01, 2016. The general assessment of the journals that include more than 380 titles is carried out by analyzing their bibliometric indicators in the system of the Russian Science Citation Index, in particular, by examining the values of their impact factors. The analysis conducted at the Institute of Socio-economic Development of Territories of RAS shows that a relatively small number of economic journals publish a significant proportion of articles that obtain a large share of citations. The author reveals that the new VAK List includes over 50% of journals specializing in economic sciences, which have a lower level of citation or which are virtually not cited at all. This indirectly indicates that such journals are “left behind” the “main stream of science”, that their significance is local, availability low, attractiveness for the audience and scientific authority insufficient. The analysis proves that when forming the list of peer-reviewed scientific publications recommended for publication of dissertation research findings, along with other criteria, it is advisable to use tools that help assess the level of the journal. It is very important that the evaluation had quantitative expression and served as a specific measure for ranking the journals. One of these tools may be a criterion value for the two-year impact factor, which helps identify journals with a sufficient citation level. The paper presents the results of analysis of the RSCI list, which was proposed by the Council for Science under the Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation as an

  16. JAC Software, Solving Conjunction Assessment Issues (United States)

    Laporte, F.


    Conjunction Messages (CM) provided by JSpOC are complete and valuable data to evaluate the level of risk of conjunctions, decide and choose avoidance actions. Nevertheless, conjunction assessment remains a difficult task which requires Middle Man between the CM provider (JSpOC) and Owner/Operators. CAESAR (Conjunction Analysis and Evaluation Service, Alerts and Recommendations) is the French Middle Man. CAESAR relies on a collaborative work environment between CAESAR team and its subscribers. For CAESAR, the collaborative work environment is based on JAC software and a dedicated secure webserver. JAC software is not the Main Flight Dynamics (FD) software used by CAESAR team, but it is a light friendly CM dedicated software to be used on laptops by on-call teams or support dialogue between Middle Man and FD teams. This paper presents the main feedbacks from CAESAR team operational experience and how each new encountered issue has enriched JAC Software functions. JAC has got two levels: - JAC Basic version, to be aware of the situation described with CMs : automatic download of CM from websites with secure password management, capacity to manage CM from different providers, management of the downloaded CM database, visualization of the key data given by the different CM related to each close approach, visualization of the evolution of those key data through tables-graphs-3Danimations, capacity to copy/paste and edit CM data to illustrate sensibility of key parameters, capacity to use several pre-defined dispersions for each primary, printable summary of analysis, statistics on CM in database, - JAC Expert version, to take and validate a decision of avoidance action: sensitivity analysis to errors, thresholds chosen by the user, simulation of maneuvers on the satellite of interest to determine their effect in terms of mitigation of the identified risk. JAC Expert version also includes a monitoring capacity to enable 24/7 analysis. JAC Basic and JAC Expert are

  17. Options for Open Issues in Planetary Protection on Mars (United States)

    Clark, Benton


    Planetary Protection policies span a wide range, with several new components which currently have only high-level requirements or concerns associated with them. There are various options for more detailed requirements and/or analyses which can be used to meet the intent and specifications attendant with each new policy. Encroachment near a Special Region (SR) requires special consideration. Unless Category IVb procedures are undertaken, no hardware may land within an error ellipse of a SR. However, a buffer zone could be specified, and/or assessment of contamination by windborne organisms taking into account prevailing weather, history of regional dust devils, "cleaning event" disturbances experienced by MER rovers, dilution effects relative to the 1E-4 criterion for equivalence to Category IVb bioburden reduction by dry heat, and time of exposure to harsh UV and oxidants on Mars. Most or all designated SR's are potentially but not yet proven to be SR's. Methane plume detection from orbit or ground-based assets, with consideration of where the putative SR may exist (subsurface?) can be quantitatively compared with the potential for contamination by downward transport of bioburden from hardware surfaces. Similar considerations apply to caves and cavities providing access to sub-surface regions, including evaluation of thermal regimes and compatibility with microbial growth. Ultimately, these decisions may be affected by assessment of intrinsic lethality of the martian environment which could be evaluated via direct experimentation, such as use of bacterial endospores or other hardy organisms that have been genetically engineered to prevent growth on Mars (e.g., knockout genes), with aliquots exposed separately to the full martian environment, to atmospheric oxidants (sans UV), and to the universal soil. Upon return-to-Earth, the survival power of such organism relative to control samples would provide direct measurements that can be used to evaluate and pave the way

  18. Assessment Worlds Colliding? Negotiating between Discourses of Assessment on an Online Open Course (United States)

    Hills, Laura; Hughes, Jonathan


    Using the badged open course, "Taking your first steps into Higher Education", this case study examines how assessment on online open courses draws on concepts of assessment used within formal and informal learning. Our experience was that assessment used within open courses, such as massive open online courses, is primarily determined…

  19. Security Issues Specific to e-Assessments



    E-learning systems play a primary and/or supportive role in modern education. With e-learning systems e-assessments are an integral part of a course be it to do formative or summative assessments. This paper identifies security vulnerabilities unique to e-assessment that are not addressed in commercial products and web security research. The reason for the additional requirements is that e-assessments are being used more and more to replace paper based tests. The e-assessments need to be in a...

  20. Learning Potential Assessment: Theoretical, Methodological and Practical Issues. (United States)

    Hamers, J. H. M., Ed.; Sijtsma, K., Ed.; Ruijssenaars, A. J. J. M., Ed.

    The first part of this volume is concerned with theoretical and conceptual issues concerning learning potential assessment. The second part deals with methodological and measurement issues in learning potential assessment, and the third part is devoted to research projects and practical applications of learning potential tests. The following…

  1. Assessing Student Learning Online: Overcoming Reliability Issues (United States)

    Arnold, Stephen D.


    Assessing students in online university courses poses challenges to the reliability factor of the measures being utilized. Some programs have the latitude to incorporate proctored assessments, but this is not always practical in asynchronously structured courses reaching out across a broad geographic region. This paper explores digital audio and…

  2. Australian Indigenous Students: Addressing Equity Issues in Assessment (United States)

    Klenowski, Val


    This article provides the background and context to the important issue of assessment and equity in relation to Indigenous students in Australia. Questions about the validity and fairness of assessment are raised and ways forward are suggested by attending to assessment questions in relation to equity and culture-fair assessment. Patterns of…

  3. Assessment in Open and Distance Learning System (ODL): A Challenge (United States)

    Chaudhary, S. V. S.; Dey, Niradhar


    Assessment is an integral part of the learning process. The traditional practice of assessment has changed to meet the need of the contemporary society. In this paper assessment strategies used in Open and Distance Education are discussed and constructive suggestions are given to meet the challenges of assessment. Recently we experience a paradigm…

  4. BWS Open System Architecture Security Assessment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cristian Ionita


    Full Text Available Business process management systems play a central role in supporting the business operations of medium and large organizations. Because of this the security characteristics of these systems are becoming very important. The present paper describes the BWS architecture used to implement the open process aware information system DocuMentor. Using the proposed platform, the article identifies the security characteristics of such systems, shows the correlation between these characteristics and the security features implemented by the platform and presents examples of how the security of such systems can be enhanced using the extension mechanism.

  5. EPa`s program for risk assessment guidelines: Exposure issues

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Callahan, M.A. [Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC (United States)


    Three major issues to be dealt with over the next ten years in the exposure assessment field are: consistency in terminology, the impact of computer technology on the choice of data and modeling, and conceptual issues such as the use of time-weighted averages.

  6. A Survey on Big Data Analytics: Challenges, Open Research Issues and Tools

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. P. Acharjya


    Full Text Available A huge repository of terabytes of data is generated each day from modern information systems and digital technolo-gies such as Internet of Things and cloud computing. Analysis of these massive data requires a lot of efforts at multiple levels to extract knowledge for decision making. Therefore, big data analysis is a current area of research and development. The basic objective of this paper is to explore the potential impact of big data challenges, open research issues, and various tools associated with it. As a result, this article provides a platform to explore big data at numerous stages. Additionally, it opens a new horizon for researchers to develop the solution, based on the challenges and open research issues.

  7. Wikipedia as Open Science: non-expert involvement in controversial scientific issues


    Aibar Puentes, Eduard; Lerga Felip, Maura


    This study considers Wikipedia as a sui generis instance of Open Science and analyses how the non-expert or lay character of the average Wikipedia editor and the open and collaborative model of this free encyclopaedia are actually shaping the way controversial scientific issues are presented. Aquest estudi considera la Viquipèdia com un exemple sui generis de la ciència oberta, i analitza cóm el no expert o el caràcter laic de l'editor de Viquipèdia i el model col·laboratiu i obert d'aques...

  8. Peer Assessment for Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hoi K. Suen


    Full Text Available The teach-learn-assess cycle in education is broken in a typical massive open online course (MOOC. Without formative assessment and feedback, MOOCs amount to information dump or broadcasting shows, not educational experiences. A number of remedies have been attempted to bring formative assessment back into MOOCs, each with its own limits and problems. The most widely applicable approach for all MOOCs to date is to use peer assessment to provide the necessary feedback. However, unmoderated peer assessment results suffer from a lack of credibility. Several methods are available today to improve on the accuracy of peer assessment results. Some combination of these methods may be necessary to make peer assessment results sufficiently accurate to be useful for formative assessment. Such results can also help to facilitate peer learning, online discussion forums, and may possibly augment summative evaluation for credentialing.

  9. Issues in designing an assessment of British Sign Language development. (United States)

    Herman, R


    This paper reports on a collaborative project in progress to develop a standardised clinical assessment of British Sign Language development for use with deaf children. The need for such an assessment is highlighted following a survey of professionals working in this area (Herman, in press). The development of the assessment battery will be described in the context of research into the assessment of sign language development. Issues in selection of the standardisation population will be presented. Finally the need for collaboration between different professionals working in this area, in particular the key role of the deaf BSL user will be emphasised.

  10. Open-loop versus closed-loop control of MEMS devices: choices and issues (United States)

    Borovic, B.; Liu, A. Q.; Popa, D.; Cai, H.; Lewis, F. L.


    From a controls point of view, micro electromechanical systems (MEMS) can be driven in an open-loop and closed-loop fashion. Commonly, these devices are driven open-loop by applying simple input signals. If these input signals become more complex by being derived from the system dynamics, we call such control techniques pre-shaped open-loop driving. The ultimate step for improving precision and speed of response is the introduction of feedback, e.g. closed-loop control. Unlike macro mechanical systems, where the implementation of the feedback is relatively simple, in the MEMS case the feedback design is quite problematic, due to the limited availability of sensor data, the presence of sensor dynamics and noise, and the typically fast actuator dynamics. Furthermore, a performance comparison between open-loop and closed-loop control strategies has not been properly explored for MEMS devices. The purpose of this paper is to present experimental results obtained using both open- and closed-loop strategies and to address the comparative issues of driving and control for MEMS devices. An optical MEMS switching device is used for this study. Based on these experimental results, as well as computer simulations, we point out advantages and disadvantages of the different control strategies, address the problems that distinguish MEMS driving systems from their macro counterparts, and discuss criteria to choose a suitable control driving strategy.

  11. Free and Open Source Software for land degradation vulnerability assessment (United States)

    Imbrenda, Vito; Calamita, Giuseppe; Coluzzi, Rosa; D'Emilio, Mariagrazia; Lanfredi, Maria Teresa; Perrone, Angela; Ragosta, Maria; Simoniello, Tiziana


    Nowadays the role of FOSS software in scientific research is becoming increasingly important. Besides the important issues of reduced costs for licences, legality and security there are many other reasons that make FOSS software attractive. Firstly, making the code opened is a warranty of quality permitting to thousands of developers around the world to check the code and fix bugs rather than rely on vendors claims. FOSS communities are usually enthusiastic about helping other users for solving problems and expand or customize software (flexibility). Most important for this study, the interoperability allows to combine the user-friendly QGIS with the powerful GRASS-GIS and the richness of statistical methods of R in order to process remote sensing data and to perform geo-statistical analysis in one only environment. This study is focused on the land degradation (i.e. the reduction in the capacity of the land to provide ecosystem goods and services and assure its functions) and in particular on the estimation of the vulnerability levels in order to suggest appropriate policy actions to reduce/halt land degradation impacts, using the above mentioned software. The area investigated is the Basilicata Region (Southern Italy) where large natural areas are mixed with anthropized areas. To identify different levels of vulnerability we adopted the Environmentally Sensitive Areas (ESAs) model, based on the combination of indicators related to soil, climate, vegetation and anthropic stress. Such indicators were estimated by using the following data-sources: - Basilicata Region Geoportal to assess soil vulnerability; - DESERTNET2 project to evaluate potential vegetation vulnerability and climate vulnerability; - NDVI-MODIS satellite time series (2000-2010) with 250m resolution, available as 16-day composite from the NASA LP DAAC to characterize the dynamic component of vegetation; - Agricultural Census data 2010, Corine Land Cover 2006 and morphological information to assess

  12. Assessment in health psychology: Introduction to the special issue. (United States)

    Butt, Zeeshan


    For the past 27 years, has been committed to publishing empirical research relevant to clinical assessment of basic and applied cognition, personality, interpersonal behavior, psychopathology, forensics, and biological psychology. There is growing interest in the use of patient-centered outcomes in medical/surgical care and for measuring health care performance. Patient-centered outcome measures complement traditional clinical outcomes of morbidity and mortality, capturing the patient's perspective regarding their health and its treatment. In this issue, we highlight 11 articles that address different aspects of such work. The articles in this special issue represent both the depth and breadth of the opportunities that exist for psychological assessment in the health setting. While there are countless patient-centered measures currently in use to measure health and health outcomes, the evidence base for their use can be quite variable (Butt, 2016). The hope is that future issues of will highlight more work in this area. (PsycINFO Database Record

  13. Personality Assessment of Global Talent: Conceptual and Methodological Issues (United States)

    van de Vijver, Fons J. R.


    The recruitment of managers who will operate in a culturally heterogeneous context (as expatriate managers, managers in a global company, or managers of a multicultural workforce) is increasingly important in an age of globalization. This article describes conceptual and methodological issues in the assessment of such managers, notably in the…

  14. Preliminary Review of Safety Assessment Issues at Savannah River Site, August 2011

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Napier, Bruce A.; Rishel, Jeremy P.; Bixler, Nathan E.


    At the request of Savannah River Nuclear Solutions (SRNS) management, a review team composed of experts in atmospheric transport modeling for environmental radiation dose assessment convened at the Savannah River Site (SRS) on August 29-30, 2011. Several issues were presented at the meeting for discussion. This is a short summary that is organized in accordance with the primary issues discussed, which is not necessarily a chronological record. Issues include: SRS Meteorological Data and its Use in MACCS2; Deposition Velocities for Particles; Deposition Velocities for Tritium; MACCS2 Dispersion Coefficients; Use of Low Surface Roughness in Open Areas; Adequacy of Meteorological Tower and Instrumentation; Displacement Height; and Validity of MACCS2 Calculations at Close-in Distances. A longer report will be issued at a later date that expands upon these topics and recommendations.

  15. Guest Editorial ~ Issues, Challenges and Possibilities for Academics and Tutors at Open and Distance Learning Environments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heather Kanuka


    Full Text Available Institutions of open and distance learning present a number of special challenges for academics. Development loads and teaching effectiveness are increasing, while traditional demands for research productivity have become a new and/ or increased pressure. The size, complexity, and structure of the networked learning environment at most institutions of open and distance learning have been known to contribute to feelings of isolation and loneliness leading to disengagement experienced by many new and not so new academics. It is possible if we do not address the disconnectedness experienced by many open and distance academics and tutors that detachment to our institutions will occur, resulting in an increased migration to either collaborate with, or work in, other institutions.Retaining faculty members is not only important for the stability and health of open and distance organizations, but retention – and recruitment – are also issues that institutions of open and distance learning need to be concerned about. The large numbers of senior faculty appointed in the mid 1970s are moving into retirement and/ or later-life careers. It has been estimated that 40 percent of university faculty will retire within the next 10 years. Recruitment and retention of academics is a pressing concern for all universities – but particularly for open and distance universities. The current detached environment may result in a serious employment problem down the road as other traditional universities begin an intensive competition for the best academics. And while these problems exist to some extent at all universities, there is probably no other type of university where building a sense of community is needed.

  16. Achievements and open issues in the determination of polarized parton distribution functions

    CERN Document Server

    Nocera, Emanuele R


    I review the current status of the determination of helicity-dependent, or polarized, parton distribution functions from a comprehensive analysis of experimental data in perturbative quantum chromodynamics. I illustrate the latest achievements driven by new measurements in polarized proton-proton collisions at the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider, namely the first evidence of a sizable polarized light sea quark asymmetry and of a positive polarized gluon distribution in the proton. I discuss which are the open issues in the determination of polarized distributions, and how these may be addressed in the future by ongoing, planned and proposed experimental programs.

  17. Issues Identified During September 2016 IBM OpenMP 4.5 Hackathon

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Richards, David F. [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)


    In September, 2016 IBM hosted an OpenMP 4.5 Hackathon at the TJ Watson Research Center. Teams from LLNL, ORNL, SNL, LANL, and LBNL attended the event. As with the 2015 hackathon, IBM produced an extremely useful and successful event with unmatched support from compiler team, applications staff, and facilities. Approximately 24 IBM staff supported 4-day hackathon and spent significant time 4-6 weeks out to prepare environment and become familiar with apps. This hackathon was also the first event to feature LLVM & XL C/C++ and Fortran compilers. This report records many of the issues encountered by the LLNL teams during the hackathon.

  18. Contextual assessment in science education: Background, issues, and policy (United States)

    Klassen, Stephen


    Contemporary assessment practices in science education have undergone significant changes in recent decades. The basis for these changes and the resulting new assessment practices are the subject of this two-part paper. Part 1 considers the basis of assessment that, more than 25 years ago, was driven by the assumptions of decomposability and decontextualization of knowledge, resulting in a low-inference testing system, often described as traditional. This assessment model was replaced not on account of direct criticism, but rather on account of a larger revolution - the change from behavioral to cognitive psychology, developments in the philosophy of science, and the rise of constructivism. Most notably, the study of the active cognitive processes of the individual resulted in a major emphasis on context in learning and assessment. These changes gave rise to the development of various contextual assessment methodologies in science education, for example, concept mapping assessment, performance assessment, and portfolio assessment. In Part 2, the literature relating to the assessment methods identified in Part 1 is reviewed, revealing that there is not much research that supports their validity and reliability. However, encouraging new work on selected-response tests is forming the basis for reconsideration of past criticisms of this technique. Despite the major developments in contextual assessment methodologies in science education, two important questions remain unanswered, namely, whether grades can be considered as genuine numeric quantities and whether the individual student is the appropriate unit of assessment in public accountability. Given these issues and the requirement for science assessment to satisfy the goals of the individual, the classroom, and the society, tentative recommendations are put forward addressing these parallel needs in the assessment of science learning.

  19. Ethical issues in personality assessment in forensic psychology. (United States)

    Knapp, S; VandeCreek, L


    In this article we address several ethical issues of concern for psychologists who are engaged in personality assessment in forensic settings such as for courts or attorneys. The ethical issues reviewed include the role of the psychologist as an expert witness, matters of competence, informed consent, confidentiality, multiple relationships, and special issues related to billing. Emphasis is placed on how psychologists can provide useful information to the courts in a manner consistent with the American Psychological Association's Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct, the Committee on Ethical Guidelines for Forensic Psychologist's Specialty Guidelines for Forensic Psychologists, and the APA's Guidelines for Child Custody Evaluations in Divorce Proceedings. The practical recommendations made in this article are consistent with the APA's Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct.

  20. Assessing the Open Source Development Processes Using OMM

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Etiel Petrinja


    Full Text Available The assessment of development practices in Free Libre Open Source Software (FLOSS projects can contribute to the improvement of the development process by identifying poor practices and providing a list of necessary practices. Available assessment methods (e.g., Capability Maturity Model Integration (CMMI do not address sufficiently FLOSS-specific aspects (e.g., geographically distributed development, importance of the contributions, reputation of the project, etc.. We present a FLOSS-focused, CMMI-like assessment/improvement model: the QualiPSo Open Source Maturity Model (OMM. OMM focuses on the development process. This makes it different from existing assessment models that are focused on the assessment of the product. We have assessed six FLOSS projects using OMM. Three projects were started and led by a software company, and three are developed by three different FLOSS communities. We identified poorly addressed development activities as the number of commit/bug reports, the external contributions, and the risk management. The results showed that FLOSS projects led by companies adopt standard project management approaches as product planning, design definition, and testing, that are less often addressed by community led FLOSS projects. The OMM is valuable for both the FLOSS community, by identifying critical development activities necessary to be improved, and for potential users that can better decide which product to adopt.

  1. Climate Change and Environmental assessments: Issues in an African Perspective

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dalfelt, Arne; Naess, Lars Otto


    The present report discusses the potential for integrating climate change issues into environmental assessments of development actions, with an emphasis on sub-Sahara Africa. The study is motivated by the fact that future climate change could have significant adverse impacts on the natural and socio-economic environment in Africa. Yet, to date global change issues, including climate change, have been largely overlooked in the process of improving environmental assessment procedures and methodologies. It is argued that although emissions of greenhouse gases in Africa are negligible today, it is highly relevant to include this aspect in the planning of long-term development strategies. The report discusses potential areas of conflicts and synergies between climate change and development goals. The general conclusion is that environmental assessments could be an appropriate tool for addressing climate change issues, while there are still several obstacles to its practical implementation. Four priority areas are suggested for further work: (1) Environmental accounting, (2) harmonization and standard-setting, (3) implementation, and (4) risk management. 82 refs., 5 figs., 11 tabs.

  2. Regional issue identification and assessment. First annual report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)


    This regional assessment report portrays the major regional environmental, human health and safety, socioeconomic and institutional effects that might result from the implementation of one of a set of national energy supply and demand projections developed by the Department of Energy in 1978. General problem areas are identified and assessed on a regional and state basis that could either constrain or significantly modify the realization of the energy projections. Many of the issues identified are of a long-standing nature and would continue to exist, in spite of the particular energy projection used. The research and assessments reflected in this document were performed by six national laboratories. It is a compilation of individual reports prepared by Federal regions and available separately.

  3. Risk assessment for produced water discharges to Louisiana open bays

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Meinhold, A.F.; Holtzman, S.; DePhillips, M.P.


    Potential human health and environmental impacts from discharge of produced water to the Gulf of Mexico concern regulators at the State and Federal levels, environmental interest groups, industry and the public. Current regulations in the United States require or propose azero discharge limit for coastal facilities based primarily on studies performed in low energy,poorly flushed environments. Produced water discharges in coastal Louisiana, however,include a number located in open bays, where potential and impacts are likely to be larger than the minimal impacts associated with offshore discharges, but smaller than those demonstrated in low-energy canal environments. This paper summarizes results of a conservative screening-level health and ecological assessment for contaminants discharged in produced water to open bays in Louisiana, and reports results of a probabilistic human health risk assessment for radium and lead. The initial human health and ecological risk assessments consisted of conservative screening analyses that identified potentially important contaminants and excluded others from further consideration. A more quantitative probabilistic risk assessment was completed for the human health effects of the two contaminants identified in this screen: radium and lead. This work is part of a series of studies on the health and ecological risks from discharges of produced water to the Gulf of Mexico, supported by the United States Department of Energy (USDOE).

  4. Geotechnical Issues in Total System Performance Assessments of Yucca Mountain

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)



    A Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) of Yucca Mountain consists of integrated sub-models and analyses of natural and engineered systems. Examples of subsystem models include unsaturated-zone flow and transport, seepage into drifts, coupled thermal hydrologic processes, transport through the engineered barrier system, and saturated-zone flow and transport. The TSPA evaluates the interaction of important processes among these subsystems, and it determines the impact of these processes on the overall performance measures (e.g., dose rate to humans). This paper summarizes the evaluation, abstraction, and combination of these subsystem models in a TSPA calculation, and it provides background on the individual TSPA subsystem components that are most directly impacted by geotechnical issues. The potential impact that geologic features, events, and processes have on the overall performance is presented, and an evaluation of the sensitivity of TSPA calculations to these issues is also provided.

  5. Data center network architecture in cloud computing:review, taxonomy, and open research issues

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Han QI; Muhammad SHIRAZ; Jie-yao LIU; Abdullah GANI; Zulkanain ABDUL RAHMAN; Torki AALTAMEEM


    The data center network (DCN), which is an important component of data centers, consists of a large number of hosted servers and switches connected with high speed communication links. A DCN enables the deployment of resources centralization and on-demand access of the information and services of data centers to users. In recent years, the scale of the DCN has constantly increased with the widespread use of cloud-based services and the unprecedented amount of data delivery in/between data centers, whereas the traditional DCN architecture lacks aggregate bandwidth, scalability, and cost effectiveness for coping with the increasing demands of tenants in accessing the services of cloud data centers. Therefore, the design of a novel DCN architecture with the features of scalability, low cost, robustness, and energy conservation is required. This paper reviews the recent research fi ndings and technologies of DCN architectures to identify the issues in the existing DCN architectures for cloud computing. We develop a taxonomy for the classifi cation of the current DCN architectures, and also qualitatively analyze the traditional and contemporary DCN architectures. Moreover, the DCN architectures are compared on the basis of the signifi cant characteristics, such as bandwidth, fault tolerance, scalability, overhead, and deployment cost. Finally, we put forward open research issues in the deployment of scalable, low-cost, robust, and energy-efficient DCN architecture, for data centers in computational clouds.

  6. Water resources assessment issues and isotope hydrology application in China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    刘恒; 陈明忠


    As one of the largest countries in the world, China has a highest population and great potential in water resources and land. Water is a key issue for sustainable development in the fu-rure, because the average water and land availability per-capita is much lower than the world averages. Water resources assessment plays a very important role. However, certain problems could not be solved due to lack of hydrological data, such as groundwater in arid and semi-arid zones. Environment isotope technologies have been applied and show promise of wide application.

  7. Risk assessment for produced water discharges to Louisiana Open Bays

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Meinhold, A.F.; DePhillips, M.P.; Holtzman, S.


    Data were collected prior to termination of discharge at three sites (including two open bay sites at Delacroix Island and Bay De Chene) for the risk assessments. The Delacroix Island Oil and Gas Field has been in production since the first well drilling in 1940; the Bay De Chene Field, since 1942. Concentrations of 226Ra, 228Ra, 210Po, and 228Th were measured in discharges. Radium conc. were measured in fish and shellfish tissues. Sediment PAH and metal conc. were also available. Benthos sampling was conducted. A survey of fishermen was conducted. The tiered risk assessment showed that human health risks from radium in produced water appear to be small; ecological risk from radium and other radionuclides in produced water also appear small. Many of the chemical contaminants discharged to open Louisiana bays appear to present little human health or ecological risk. A conservative screening analysis suggested potential risks to human health from Hg and Pb and a potential risk to ecological receptors from total effluent, Sb, Cd, Cu, Pb, Ni, Ag, Zn, and phenol in the water column and PAHs in sediment; quantitiative risk assessments are being done for these contaminants.

  8. Regional issue identification and assessment: study methodology. First annual report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)


    The overall assessment methodologies and models utilized for the first project under the Regional Issue Identification and Assessment (RIIA) program are described. Detailed descriptions are given of the methodologies used by lead laboratories for the quantification of the impacts of an energy scenario on one or more media (e.g., air, water, land, human and ecology), and by all laboratories to assess the regional impacts on all media. The research and assessments reflected in this document were performed by the following national laboratories: Argonne National Laboratory; Brookhaven National Laboratory; Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory; Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory; Oak Ridge National Laboratory; and Pacific Northwest Laboratory. This report contains five chapters. Chapter 1 briefly describes the overall study methodology and introduces the technical participants. Chapter 2 is a summary of the energy policy scenario selected for the RIIA I study and Chapter 3 describes how this scenario was translated into a county-level siting pattern of energy development. The fourth chapter is a detailed description of the individual methodologies used to quantify the environmental and socioeconomic impacts of the scenario while Chapter 5 describes how these impacts were translated into comprehensive regional assessments for each Federal Region.


    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Uchitel, Kirsten; Tanana, Heather


    This report examines the relationship between simulation-based science and judicial assessments of simulations or models supporting evaluations of environmental harms or risks, considering both how it exists currently and how it might be shaped in the future. This report considers the legal standards relevant to judicial assessments of simulation-based science and provides examples of the judicial application of those legal standards. Next, this report discusses the factors that inform whether there is a correlation between the sophistication of a challenged simulation and judicial support for that simulation. Finally, this report examines legal analysis of the broader issues that must be addressed for simulation-based science to be better understood and utilized in the context of judicial challenge and evaluation. !

  10. Challenging issues in assessing analytical similarity in biosimilar studies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chow SC


    Full Text Available Shein-Chung Chow Biostatistics and Bioinformatics, Duke University School of Medicine, Durham, NC, USA Abstract: For assessing biosimilarity of biosimilar products, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA proposed a stepwise approach for providing totality-of-the-evidence of similarity between a proposed biosimilar product and a US-licensed (reference product. The stepwise approach starts with an assessment of critical quality attributes (CQAs that are relevant to clinical outcomes in structural and functional characterization in manufacturing process of the proposed biosimilar product. The FDA suggests that these critical quality–relevant attributes be identified and classified into three tiers depending their criticality or risk ranking. To assist the sponsors, the FDA also suggests some statistical approaches for the assessment of analytical similarity for CQAs from different tiers, namely equivalence test for Tier 1, quality range approach for Tier 2, and descriptive raw data and graphical comparison for Tier 3. In this paper, challenging issues to the FDA's recommended approaches are discussed followed by alternative methods for the assessment of analytical similarity (mainly for CQAs from Tier 1. Keywords: stepwise approach, critical quality attribute, CQA, equivalence test, quality range approach 

  11. 78 FR 44625 - Proposed Information Collection (Open Burn Pit Registry Airborne Hazard Self-Assessment... (United States)


    ... From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS Proposed Information Collection (Open Burn Pit Registry Airborne Hazard Self-Assessment.... 2900--NEW, Open Burn Pit Registry Airborne Hazard Self-Assessment Questionnaire,'' in...

  12. Doubly-Special Relativity: Facts, Myths and Some Key Open Issues

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giovanni Amelino-Camelia


    Full Text Available I report, emphasizing some key open issues and some aspects that are particularly relevant for phenomenology, on the status of the development of “doubly-special” relativistic (“DSR” theories with both an observer-independent high-velocity scale and an observer-independent small-length/large-momentum scale, possibly relevant for the Planck-scale/quantum-gravity realm. I also give a true/false characterization of the structure of these theories. In particular, I discuss a DSR scenario without modification of the energy-momentum dispersion relation and without the қ-Poincaré Hopf algebra, a scenario with deformed Poincaré symmetries which is not a DSR scenario, some scenarios with both an invariant length scale and an invariant velocity scale which are not DSR scenarios, and a DSR scenario in which it is easy to verify that some observable relativistic (but non-special-relativistic features are insensitive to possible nonlinear redefinitions of symmetry generators.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Cipriani


    Full Text Available Scholars with different backgrounds have carried out extensive surveys centred on how 3D digital models, data acquisition and processing have changed over the years in fields of archaeology and architecture and more in general in the Cultural Heritage panorama: the current framework focused on reality-based modelling is then split in several branches: acquisition, communication and analysis of buildings (Pintus et alii, 2014. Despite the wide set of well-structured and all-encompassing surveys on the IT application in Cultural Heritage, several open issues still seem to be present, in particular once the purpose of digital simulacra is the one to fit with the “pre-informatics" legacy of architectural/archaeological representation (historical drawings with their graphic codes and aesthetics. Starting from a series of heterogeneous matters that came up studying two Italian UNESCO sites, this paper aims at underlining the importance of integrating different pipelines from different technological fields, in order to achieve multipurpose models, capable to comply with graphic codes of traditional survey, as well as semantic enrichment, and last but not least, data compression/portability and texture reliability under different lighting simulation.

  14. Data-driven research: open data opportunities for growing knowledge, and ethical issues that arise

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aleksandra K Krotoski


    Full Text Available The Open Data Initiative in the UK offers incredible opportunities for researchers who seek to gain insight from the wealth of public and institutional data that is increasingly available from government sources – like NHS prescription and GP referral information – or the information we freely offer online. Coupled with digital technologies that can help teams generate connections and collaborations, these data sets can support large-scale innovation and insight. However, by looking at a comparable explosion in data-driven journalism, this article hopes to highlight some of the ethical questions that may arise from big data. The popularity of the social networking service Twitter to share information during the riots in London in August 2011 produced a real-time record of sense-making of enormous interest to academics, reporters and to Twitter users themselves; however, when analysed and published, academic and journalistic interpretations of aggregate content was transformed and individualized, with potential implications for a user-base that was unaware it was being observed. Similar issues arise in academic research with human subjects. Here, the questions of reflexivity in data design and research ethics are considered through a popular media frame.

  15. Smartphone-Based Solutions for Fall Detection and Prevention: Challenges and Open Issues

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammad Ashfak Habib


    Full Text Available This paper presents a state-of-the-art survey of smartphone (SP-based solutions for fall detection and prevention. Falls are considered as major health hazards for both the elderly and people with neurodegenerative diseases. To mitigate the adverse consequences of falling, a great deal of research has been conducted, mainly focused on two different approaches, namely, fall detection and fall prevention. Required hardware for both fall detection and prevention are also available in SPs. Consequently, researchers’ interest in finding SP-based solutions has increased dramatically over recent years. To the best of our knowledge, there has been no published review on SP-based fall detection and prevention. Thus in this paper, we present the taxonomy for SP-based fall detection and prevention solutions and systematic comparisons of existing studies. We have also identified three challenges and three open issues for future research, after reviewing the existing articles. Our time series analysis demonstrates a trend towards the integration of external sensing units with SPs for improvement in usability of the systems.

  16. Horizontal Price Transmission in Agricultural Markets: Fundamental Concepts and Open Empirical Issues

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giulia Listorti


    Full Text Available Following the dramatic changes experienced by the prices of agricultural commodities in 2007-2008, the analysis of horizontal price transmission mechanisms in agricultural markets has attracted renewed interest. In particular, this has led to the emergence of new challenges for the empirical analysis. How to model the increasing volatility and non linear behaviour of prices, to assess the impact of the policy responses to market turbulence, and how to account for the increasing interconnections between agricultural and non-agricultural commodity markets are amongst the most investigated issues. Building on a common analytical framework, this paper discusses and reviews the most recent methodological developments and empirical contributions in the field.

  17. Photovoltaic procurement strategies: an assessment of supply issues

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Posner, D.; Costello, D.


    This review report presents the results of an analysis of alternative approaches to the design of a federal photovoltaics procurement program. Advantages and disadvantages of large purchases at fixed prices and smaller purchases for testing and demonstrating the technology are presented. The objectives and possible impacts of these purchase programs on the photovoltaic industry are described. The reactions of the industry to alternative purchase programs were assessed using personal interviews with selected companies currently active in photovoltaics. The report begins with a review of the impacts of federal procurements on other innovations, including the electronics industry, and suggests the relation of these procurements to photovoltaics. The methodology for conducting the interviews is presented next. The results of the interviews are summarized into possible scenarios of future developments in the industry and into discussions of key issues in the design of a procurement program. An appendix on the current structure of the photovoltaic industry is provided.

  18. Current methodological issues in the economic assessment of personalized medicine. (United States)

    Annemans, Lieven; Redekop, Ken; Payne, Katherine


    There is a need for methodological scrutiny in the economic assessment of personalized medicine. In this article, we present a list of 10 specific issues that we argue pose specific methodological challenges that require careful consideration when designing and conducting robust model-based economic evaluations in the context of personalized medicine. Key issues are related to the correct framing of the research question, interpretation of test results, data collection of medical management options after obtaining test results, and expressing the value of tests. The need to formulate the research question clearly and be explicit and specific about the technology being evaluated is essential because various test kits can have the same purpose and yet differ in predictive value, costs, and relevance to practice and patient populations. The correct reporting of sensitivity/specificity, and especially the false negatives and false positives (which are population dependent), of the investigated tests is also considered as a key element. This requires additional structural complexity to establish the relationship between the test result and the consecutive treatment changes and outcomes. This process involves translating the test characteristics into clinical utility, and therefore outlining the clinical and economic consequences of true and false positives and true and false negatives. Information on treatment patterns and on their costs and outcomes, however, is often lacking, especially for false-positive and false-negative test results. The analysis can even become very complex if different tests are combined or sequentially used. This potential complexity can be handled by explicitly showing how these tests are going to be used in practice and then working with the combined sensitivities and specificities of the tests. Each of these issues leads to a higher degree of uncertainty in economic models designed to assess the added value of personalized medicine compared

  19. Unicast routing protocols for urban vehicular networks:review, taxonomy, and open research issues

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Syed Adeel Ali SHAH; Muhammad SHIRAZ; Mostofa Kamal NASIR; Rafi dah Binti MD NOOR


    Over the past few years, numerous traffic safety applications have been developed using vehicular ad hoc networks (VANETs). These applications represent public interest and require network-wide dissemination techniques. On the other hand, certain non-safety applications do not require network-wide dissemination techniques. Such applications can be characterized by their individual interest between two vehicles that are geographically apart. In the existing literature, several proposals of unicast protocols exist that can be used for these non-safety applications. Among the proposals, unicast protocols for city scenarios are considered to be most challenging. This implies that in city scenarios unicast protocols show minimal persistence towards highly dynamic vehicular characteristics, including mobility, road structure, and physical environment. Unlike other studies, this review is motivated by the diversity of vehicular characteristics and difficulty of unicast protocol adaption in city scenarios. The review starts with the categorization of unicast protocols for city scenarios according to their requirement for a predefi ned unicast path. Then, properties of typical city roads are discussed, which helps to explore limitations in efficient unicast communication. Through an exhaustive literature review, we propose a thematic taxonomy based on different aspects of unicast protocol operation. It is followed by a review of selected unicast protocols for city scenarios that reveal their fundamental characteristics. Several signifi cant parameters from the taxonomy are used to qualitatively compare the reviewed protocols. Qualitative comparison also includes critical investigation of distinct approaches taken by researchers in experimental protocol evaluation. As an outcome of this review, we point out open research issues in unicast routing.

  20. 78 FR 54956 - Agency Information Collection (Open Burn Pit Registry Airborne Hazard Self-Assessment... (United States)


    ... AFFAIRS Agency Information Collection (Open Burn Pit Registry Airborne Hazard . Please refer to ``OMB Control No. 2900-NEW, Open Burn Pit Registry Airborne Hazard Self-Assessment Questionnaire.'' SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Title: Open Burn Pit Registry Airborne Hazard...

  1. 78 FR 33894 - Proposed Information Collection (Open Burn Pit Registry Airborne Hazard Self-Assessment... (United States)


    ... Collection (Open Burn Pit Registry Airborne Hazard Self-Assessment Questionnaire) Activity: Comment Request... forms of information technology. Title: Open Burn Pit Registry Airborne Hazard . Please refer to ``OMB Control No. 2900-NEW, Open Burn Pit Registry Airborne Hazard...

  2. Open-Start Mathematics Problems: An Approach to Assessing Problem Solving (United States)

    Monaghan, John; Pool, Peter; Roper, Tom; Threlfall, John


    This article describes one type of mathematical problem, open-start problems, and discusses their potential for use in assessment. In open-start problems how one starts to address the problem can vary but they have a correct answer. We argue that the use of open-start problems in assessment could positively influence classroom mathematics…

  3. Issues and challenges of knowledge representation and reasoning methods in situation assessment (Level 2 Fusion) (United States)

    Blasch, Erik; Kadar, Ivan; Salerno, John; Kokar, Mieczyslaw M.; Das, Subrata; Powell, Gerald M.; Corkill, Daniel D.; Ruspini, Enrique H.


    Situation assessment (SA) involves deriving relations among entities, e.g., the aggregation of object states (i.e. classification and location). While SA has been recognized in the information fusion and human factors literature, there still exist open questions regarding knowledge representation and reasoning methods to afford SA. For instance, while lots of data is collected over a region of interest, how does this information get presented to an attention constrained user? The information overload can deteriorate cognitive reasoning so a pragmatic solution to knowledge representation is needed for effective and efficient situation understanding. In this paper, we present issues associated with Level 2 (Situation Assessment) including: (1) user perception and perceptual reasoning representation, (2) knowledge discovery process models, (3) procedural versus logical reasoning about relationships, (4) user-fusion interaction through performance metrics, and (5) syntactic and semantic representations. While a definitive conclusion is not the aim of the paper, many critical issues are proposed in order to characterize future successful strategies to knowledge representation and reasoning strategies for situation assessment.

  4. Pesticide Exposure, Safety Issues, and Risk Assessment Indicators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christos A. Damalas


    Full Text Available Pesticides are widely used in agricultural production to prevent or control pests, diseases, weeds, and other plant pathogens in an effort to reduce or eliminate yield losses and maintain high product quality. Although pesticides are developed through very strict regulation processes to function with reasonable certainty and minimal impact on human health and the environment, serious concerns have been raised about health risks resulting from occupational exposure and from residues in food and drinking water. Occupational exposure to pesticides often occurs in the case of agricultural workers in open fields and greenhouses, workers in the pesticide industry, and exterminators of house pests. Exposure of the general population to pesticides occurs primarily through eating food and drinking water contaminated with pesticide residues, whereas substantial exposure can also occur in or around the home. Regarding the adverse effects on the environment (water, soil and air contamination from leaching, runoff, and spray drift, as well as the detrimental effects on wildlife, fish, plants, and other non-target organisms, many of these effects depend on the toxicity of the pesticide, the measures taken during its application, the dosage applied, the adsorption on soil colloids, the weather conditions prevailing after application, and how long the pesticide persists in the environment. Therefore, the risk assessment of the impact of pesticides either on human health or on the environment is not an easy and particularly accurate process because of differences in the periods and levels of exposure, the types of pesticides used (regarding toxicity and persistence, and the environmental characteristics of the areas where pesticides are usually applied. Also, the number of the criteria used and the method of their implementation to assess the adverse effects of pesticides on human health could affect risk assessment and would possibly affect the characterization

  5. EPA`s program for risk assessment guidelines: Cancer classification issues

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wiltse, J. [Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC (United States)


    Issues presented are related to classification of weight of evidence in cancer risk assessments. The focus in this paper is on lines of evidence used in constructing a conclusion about potential human carcinogenicity. The paper also discusses issues that are mistakenly addressed as classification issues but are really part of the risk assessment process. 2 figs.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marlon Brancher


    Full Text Available Odour annoyances are considered a major cause of public complaints to regulatory agencies regarding air quality and represent a growing social problem, especially in industrialized countries. In view of the need to diagnose odour sources for control and mitigation of possible impacts on communities, was assessed, through a case study, the odorous emissions from an open biofilter. The equipment was responsible for gas treatment generated in the wastewater plant treatment of a textile industry. Sampling was conducted in the inlet duct of the biofilter using direct sampling and on the emission surface (output using a hood (VDI 3477:2004. Samples were stored in plastic bags manufactured in polyvinyl fluoride (Tedlar® and transported to the laboratory, where the odour concentration (in UO m-3 was determined based on the dynamic olfactometry dilution procedure (EN 13725:2003. To calculate the odour emission rate (OER (in UO h-1, the volumetric flow rate (in m3 h-1 was measured in the inlet duct of the biofilter. The values obtained for the efficiency and the OER were 98.7 % and 0.34 x 106 UO h-1, respectively. Comparing the efficiency value with the criterion established by Article 12 of Resolution SEMA No 054:2006 (State of Paraná, Brazil, adopted as reference, the biofiltration system meets the minimum efficiency rating of 85 % required in removing odour.

  7. Issues and Challenges in Open and Distance e-Learning: Perspectives from the Philippines (United States)

    Arinto, Patricia Brazil


    Rapid advances in information and communications technology in the digital age have brought about significant changes in the practice of distance education (DE) worldwide. DE practitioners in the Philippines' open university have coined the term "open and distance e-learning" (ODeL) to refer to the new forms of DE, which are…



    Fazal-e- Amin; Ahmad Kamil Mahmood; Alan Oxley


    Software product lines and open source software are two emerging paradigms in software engineering. A common theme in both of these paradigms is „reuse‟. Software product lines are a reuse centered approach that makes use of existing assets to develop new products. At the moment, a motivation for using open source software is so as to gain access to source code, which can then be reused. The product line community is being attracted to open source components. The use of open source softwa...

  9. Development and Assessment of the Social Issues Advocacy Scale (United States)

    Nilsson, Johanna E.; Marszalek, Jacob M.; Linnemeyer, Rachel M.; Bahner, Angela D.; Misialek, Leah Hanson


    This article describes the development and the initial psychometric evaluation of the Social Issues Advocacy Scale in two studies. In the first study, an exploratory factor analysis (n = 278) revealed a four-factor scale, accounting for 71.4% of the variance, measuring different aspects of social issue advocacy: Political and Social Advocacy,…

  10. Cross-Cultural Psychological Assessment: Issues and Procedures for the Psychological Appraisal of Refugee Patients. (United States)

    Butcher, James N.

    This report addresses some of the problems and issues involved in psychological assessment of refugee clients in mental health programs and surveys the assessment procedures in current use. Part I discusses the problems and issues involved in the psychological assessment of ethnic minority and refugee clients, summarizes some of the background…

  11. Self- and Peer Assessment in Massive Open Online Courses (United States)

    Admiraal, Wilfried; Huisman, Bart; van de Ven, Maarten


    Open online distance learning in higher education has quickly gained popularity, expanded, and evolved, with Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) as the most recent development. New web technologies allow for scalable ways to deliver video lecture content, implement social forums and track student progress in MOOCs. However, we remain limited in…

  12. e-Assessment in a Limited-Resources Dental School Using an Open-Source Learning Management System. (United States)

    El Tantawi, Maha M A; Abdelsalam, Maha M; Mourady, Ahmed M; Elrifae, Ismail M B


    e-Assessment provides solutions to some problems encountered in dental students' evaluation. The aim of this study was to evaluate the experience of a limited-resources dental school with e-assessment provided through an open-source learning management system (LMS). Data about users' access and types of e-assessment activities at the Faculty of Dentistry, Alexandria University, Egypt, were obtained from the web-based LMS Moodle. A questionnaire developed to assess students' perceptions of the e-assessment was also sent to students registered in two courses (undergraduate and postgraduate) with the same instructor. The results showed that most e-courses at the school had one form of e-assessment (82%) and, of these, 16.7% had summative assessment activities. There were significant differences among departments in the number of e-courses with e-assessment. One-quarter of e-courses with e-assessment used Moodle quizzes. Of 285 students registered in the two courses that included the questionnaire, 170 responded (response rate=59.6%). The responding students positively perceived the impact of e-assessment on learning and its reliability and security, whereas technical issues and related stresses were negatively perceived. This study suggests that e-assessment can be used at minimal cost in dental schools with limited resources and large class sizes with the least demands on faculty members and teaching staff time. For these schools, an open-source LMS such as Moodle provides formative e-assessment not available otherwise and accommodates various question formats and varying levels of instructors' technical skills. These students seemed to have a positive impression of the e-assessment although technical problems and related stresses are issues that need to be addressed.

  13. Special Issue on Using Econometrics for Assessing Economic Models

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Juselius, Katarina


    Two methodological approaches to empirical economics which are labelled ‘theory first' versus ‘reality first' are introduced building the background for the discussion of the individual contributions to this special issue....

  14. On "Japanese Style" Teacher Education Reform: Considering Issues of Quality Development under an "Open System" (United States)

    Iwata, Yasuyuki


    A complication of teacher education policy in Japan is rooted in a gap between an image of teachers, which is held by society as a whole, and includes various character traits and the reality of Japanese university education. On the other hand, the expansion of an "open system" and lack of nationwide standard are making individual…

  15. 75 FR 55297 - Further Inquiry Into Two Under-Developed Issues in the Open Internet Proceeding (United States)


    ... mobile broadband devices and networks? Will deployment of next-generation technologies (e.g., LTE...'' services). The second is the application of open Internet rules to mobile wireless Internet access services, which have unique characteristics related to technology, associated application and device markets,...

  16. On the issue of costs in programmatic assessment. (United States)

    van der Vleuten, Cees P M; Heeneman, Sylvia


    Programmatic assessment requires labour and cost intensive activities such as feedback in a quantitative and qualitative form, a system of learner support in guiding feedback uptake and self-directed learning, and a decision-making arrangement that includes committees of experts making a holistic professional judgment while using due process measures to achieve trustworthy decisions. This can only be afforded if we redistribute the resources of assessment in a curriculum. Several strategies are suggested. One is to introduce progress testing as a replacement for costly cognitive assessment formats in modules. In addition, all assessments should be replaced by assessment formats that are maximally aligned with the learning tasks. For performance-based assessment, OSCEs should be sparsely used, while education and work-embedded assessment should be maximized as part of the routine of ongoing instruction and assessment. Information technology may support affordable feedback strategies, as well as the creation of a paper trail on performance. By making more dramatic choices in the way we allocate resources to assessment, the cost-intensive activities of programmatic assessment may be realized.

  17. Assessment of crack opening area for leak rates

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sharples, J.K.; Bouchard, P.J.


    This paper outlines the background to recommended crack opening area solutions given in a proposed revision to leak before break guidance for the R6 procedure. Comparisons with experimental and analytical results are given for some selected cases of circumferential cracks in cylinders. It is shown that elastic models can provide satisfactory estimations of crack opening displacement (and area) but they become increasingly conservative for values of L{sub r} greater than approximately 0.4. The Dugdale small scale yielding model gives conservative estimates of crack opening displacement with increasing enhancement for L{sub r} values greater than 0.4. Further validation of the elastic-plastic reference stress method for up to L{sub r} values of about 1.0 is presented by experimental and analytical comparisons. Although a more detailed method, its application gives a best estimate of crack opening displacement which may be substantially greater than small scale plasticity models. It is also shown that the local boundary conditions in pipework need to be carefully considered when evaluating crack opening area for through-wall bending stresses resulting from welding residual stresses or geometry discontinuities.

  18. Narrative Processes and Attachment Representations: Issues of Development and Assessment. (United States)

    Oppenheim, David; Waters, Harriet Salatas


    Reviews attachment research based on narrative assessments, noting that these assessments rely on subjective variables as well as working models as determinants of children's narrative productions. Reviews John Bowlby's ideas regarding the importance of parent-child verbal communications in attachment security. Reviews recent cognitive research…

  19. Assessment and E-Learning: Current Issues and Future Trends (United States)

    Cowie, Neil; Sakui, Keiko


    This paper describes different ways in which digital technology can be used for language learning. It then identifies some key trends connecting assessment and technology in language learning and higher education: the use of automated systems to enhance traditional assessment practices; the use of Web 2.0 tools to facilitate new assessment…

  20. The Issue of Subjectivity in Authentic Social Studies Assessment. (United States)

    Nickell, Pat


    Suggests that scoring criteria should be used in order to reduce teacher subjectivity in scoring classroom assessments. Describes scoring criteria as specific expectations made clear in task instructions used to evaluate student work. Provides an example assessment task for high school geography and addresses three common teacher errors. (CMK)

  1. The Psychoeducational Assessment of Ebonics Speakers: Issues and Challenges. (United States)

    Gopaul-McNicol, Sharon-ann; Reid, Grace; Wisdom, Cecilia


    Focuses on the limitations of traditional standardized psychoeducational assessments for Ebonics speakers and describes alternative measures that may yield more accurate results for these students. Also highlights the implications of traditional and nontraditional assessment approaches for test developers, evaluators, educators, and students.…

  2. Open Heavy Flavor Production in QCD -- Conceptual Framework and Implementation Issues

    CERN Document Server

    Tung, W K; Schmidt, C; Tung, Wu-Ki; Kretzer, Stefan; Schmidt, Carl


    Heavy flavor production is an important QCD process both in its own right and as a key component of precision global QCD analysis. Apparent disagreements between fixed-flavor scheme calculations of b-production rate with experimental measurements in hadro-, lepto-, and photo-production provide new impetus to a thorough examination of the theory and phenomenology of this process. We review existing methods of calculation, and place them in the context of the general PQCD framework of Collins. A distinction is drawn between scheme dependence and implementation issues related to quark mass effects near threshold. We point out a so far overlooked kinematic constraint on the threshold behavior, which greatly simplifies the variable flavor number scheme. It obviates the need for the elaborate existing prescriptions, and leads to robust predictions. It can facilitate the study of current issues on heavy flavor production as well as precision global QCD analysis.

  3. Integrated Systems for NGS Data Management and Analysis: Open Issues and Available Solutions. (United States)

    Bianchi, Valerio; Ceol, Arnaud; Ogier, Alessandro G E; de Pretis, Stefano; Galeota, Eugenia; Kishore, Kamal; Bora, Pranami; Croci, Ottavio; Campaner, Stefano; Amati, Bruno; Morelli, Marco J; Pelizzola, Mattia


    Next-generation sequencing (NGS) technologies have deeply changed our understanding of cellular processes by delivering an astonishing amount of data at affordable prices; nowadays, many biology laboratories have already accumulated a large number of sequenced samples. However, managing and analyzing these data poses new challenges, which may easily be underestimated by research groups devoid of IT and quantitative skills. In this perspective, we identify five issues that should be carefully addressed by research groups approaching NGS technologies. In particular, the five key issues to be considered concern: (1) adopting a laboratory management system (LIMS) and safeguard the resulting raw data structure in downstream analyses; (2) monitoring the flow of the data and standardizing input and output directories and file names, even when multiple analysis protocols are used on the same data; (3) ensuring complete traceability of the analysis performed; (4) enabling non-experienced users to run analyses through a graphical user interface (GUI) acting as a front-end for the pipelines; (5) relying on standard metadata to annotate the datasets, and when possible using controlled vocabularies, ideally derived from biomedical ontologies. Finally, we discuss the currently available tools in the light of these issues, and we introduce HTS-flow, a new workflow management system conceived to address the concerns we raised. HTS-flow is able to retrieve information from a LIMS database, manages data analyses through a simple GUI, outputs data in standard locations and allows the complete traceability of datasets, accompanying metadata and analysis scripts.

  4. Integrated systems for NGS data management and analysis: open issues and available solutions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valerio eBianchi


    Full Text Available Next-generation sequencing (NGS technologies have deeply changed our understanding of cellular processes by delivering an astonishing amount of data at affordable prices; nowadays, many biology laboratories have already accumulated a large number of sequenced samples. However, managing and analyzing these data poses new challenges, which may easily be underestimated by research groups devoid of IT and quantitative skills. In this perspective, we identify five issues that should be carefully addressed by research groups approaching NGS technologies. In particular, the five key issues to be considered concern: 1 adopting a laboratory management system (LIMS and safeguard the resulting raw data structure in downstream analyses; 2 monitoring the flow of the data and standardizing input and output directories and file names, even when multiple analysis protocols are used on the same data; 3 ensuring complete traceability of the analysis performed; 4 enabling non-experienced users to run analyses through a graphical user interface (GUI acting as a front-end for the pipelines; 5 relying on standard metadata to annotate the datasets, and when possible using controlled vocabularies, ideally derived from biomedical ontologies. Finally, we discuss the currently available tools in the light of these issues, and we introduce HTS-flow, a new workflow management system (WMS conceived to address the concerns we raised. HTS-flow is able to retrieve information from a LIMS database, manages data analyses through a simple GUI, outputs data in standard locations and allows the complete traceability of datasets, accompanying metadata and analysis scripts.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silvane Aparecida de Freitas


    Full Text Available In this investigation, the reading is characterized as a discursive process that considers the individual reader as a producer of meaning. It considering all the socio-historical-ideological situation in which the reader and author are inserted. From this perspective, we intend to discuss some actual concepts in the academic debate on the teaching of reading, the external evaluation and its relation to public policy. Specifically, it discussing the conceptions of reading and analyzing the reading issues in the exam of the last year of High School. The focus is to verify that these issues are in line with current conceptions of reading. Therefore, we conclude that the reading questions of this external evaluation SAEMS – system of external evaluation of Mato Grosso do Sul, seeks an interpretation with a single answer. It leaving no margin for polyphony, assuming that there is always a single response. The meaning is ready and finished, so these issues do not cause the student/reader interacts with the text. He/she can not be consider as a responsive active subject.

  6. Open Access, Library Subscriptions and Article Processing Charges: Hybrid journals models and issues


    Vijayakumar, J. K.; Tamarkin, Molly


    Hybrid journals contains articles behind a pay-wall to be subscribed, as well as papers made open access when author pays article processing charge (APC). In such cases, an Institution will end up paying twice and Publishers tend to double-dip. Discussions and pilot models are emerging on pricing options, such as “offset pricing,” [where APCs are adjusted or discounted with subscription costs as vouchers or reductions in next year subscriptions, APCs beyond the subscription costs are modestl...

  7. Assessment of distributed solar power systems: Issues and impacts (United States)

    Moyle, R. A.; Chernoff, H.; Schweizer, T. C.; Patton, J. B.


    The installation of distributed solar-power systems presents electric utilities with a host of questions. Some of the technical and economic impacts of these systems are discussed. Among the technical interconnect issues are isolated operation, power quality, line safety, and metering options. Economic issues include user purchase criteria, structures and installation costs, marketing and product distribution costs, and interconnect costs. An interactive computer program that allows easy calculation of allowable system prices and allowable generation-equipment prices was developed as part of this project. It is concluded that the technical problems raised by distributed solar systems are surmountable, but their resolution may be costly. The stringent purchase criteria likely to be imposed by many potential system users and the economies of large-scale systems make small systems (less than 10 to 20 kW) less attractive than larger systems. Utilities that consider life-cycle costs in making investment decisions and third-party investors who have tax and financial advantages are likely to place the highest value on solar-power systems.

  8. EPA`s program for risk assessment guidelines: Quantification issues

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dourson, M.L. [Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC (United States)


    The quantitative procedures associated with noncancer risk assessment include reference dose (RfD), benchmark dose, and severity modeling. The RfD, which is part of the EPA risk assessment guidelines, is an estimation of a level that is likely to be without any health risk to sensitive individuals. The RfD requires two major judgments: the first is choice of a critical effect(s) and its No Observed Adverse Effect Level (NOAEL); the second judgment is choice of an uncertainty factor. This paper discusses major assumptions and limitations of the RfD model.

  9. NATO Advanced Study Institute on Materials Issues for Generation IV Systems : Status, Open Questions and Challenges

    CERN Document Server

    Gorse, Dominique; Mazière, Dominique; Pontikis, Vassilis


    Global warming, shortage of low-cost oil resources and the increasing demand for energy are currently controlling the world's economic expansion while often opposing desires for sustainable and peaceful development. In this context, atomic energy satisfactorily fulfills the criteria of low carbon gas production and high overall yield. However, in the absence of industrial fast-breeders the use of nuclear fuel is not optimal, and the production of high activity waste materials is at a maximum. These are the principal reasons for the development of a new, fourth generation of nuclear reactors, minimizing the undesirable side-effects of current nuclear energy production technology while increasing yields by increasing operation temperatures and opening the way for the industrial production of hydrogen through the decomposition of water. The construction and use of such reactors is hindered by several factors, including performance limitations of known structural materials, particularly if the life of the project...

  10. A discussion of some methodological issues in international assessments

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Linden, van der Wim J.


    Three topics addressed in the previous chapters are identified and discussed from a somewhat different perspective from that of the chapter authors. The topics are: the level of scoring in assessment studies, translation of test items, and sampling of curriculum content. Based on the analysis of the

  11. Life Cycle Assessment of electricity generation: overview and methodological issues

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Turconi, Roberto; Boldrin, Alessio; Astrup, Thomas Fruergaard

    Electricity production is currently responsible for a large share of global Greenhouse Gas (GHG), NOx and SO2 emissions, and their related environmental impacts. This study provides a critical review of the status of research on life cycle assessment (LCA) of electricity generation. NREL [1-6] re...

  12. Child Sexual Abuse Assessment: Issues in Professional Ethics. (United States)

    Milchman, Madelyn Simring


    Coordinates ethical codes for psychiatry, psychology, and social work and discusses their implications for child sexual abuse assessment in child protection and divorce/custody/visitation cases. Guidelines developed by the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children are also considered. Confidentiality, protection from harm, and bias…


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. N. Vikram RAJ URS


    Full Text Available Education is intimately connected with ethics, because holistically speaking education is more than simply passing examinations and acquiring degrees. Education is character building and life long learning. Savants and philosophers throughout the history of humankind have borne testimony to this aspect of education. Today, there is a great deal of emphasis on continuous and life long learning which implies that education is a continual learning process and not merely relegated to certification. Our experience in the field of distance education indicates that the profile of distance learners varies, cutting across barriers of gender, class and caste. The distance learner may be suffering from a sense of isolation as he/she makes a return to study after a gap of time or while working. It is there that the distance educator makes a positive, ethical and interventionist role by helping the student to learn beyond the stereotypical classroom situation and can act effectively as the friend, philosopher and guide of the learner. Thus practicing what you preach is the moto of ethics in distance. Some of the more important ethical concerns associated with open and distance learning are not those that may be faced by learners. Instead, the challenges faced by those that design ODL or use it in their teaching can be seen as increasingly important. These challenges include globalization, which has emphasized instrumental rather than social aims of education, and the use of cognitive rather than affective pedagogies. For ODL designers and teachers, this has resulted in a concentration on cognitive tasks and market-driven aspects of open and distance learning at the expense of the social harmony that might otherwise be achieved. The overarching ethical concern for ODL practitioners should be to implement an appropriate pedagogy that will satisfy both instrumental and social aims. While this can be achieved, in part, through the use of the pedagogies outlined

  14. Just Roll with It? Rolling Volumes vs. Discrete Issues in Open Access Library and Information Science Journals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jill Cirasella


    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION Articles in open access (OA journals can be published on a rolling basis, as they become ready, or in complete, discrete issues. This study examines the prevalence of and reasons for rolling volumes vs. discrete issues among scholarly OA library and information science (LIS journals based in the United States. METHODS A survey was distributed to journal editors, asking them about their publication model and their reasons for and satisfaction with that model. RESULTS Of the 21 responding journals, 12 publish in discrete issues, eight publish in rolling volumes, and one publishes in rolling volumes with an occasional special issue. Almost all editors, regardless of model, cited ease of workflow as a justification for their chosen publication model, suggesting that there is no single best workflow for all journals. However, while all rolling-volume editors reported being satisfied with their model, satisfaction was less universal among discrete-issue editors. DISCUSSION The unexpectedly high number of rolling-volume journals suggests that LIS journal editors are making forward-looking choices about publication models even though the topic has not been much addressed in the library literature. Further research is warranted; possibilities include expanding the study’s geographic scope, broadening the study to other disciplines, and investigating publication model trends across the entire scholarly OA universe. CONCLUSION Both because satisfaction is high among editors of rolling-volume journals and because readers and authors appreciate quick publication times, the rolling-volume model will likely become even more prevalent in coming years.

  15. Web-Based Portfolio Assessment: Validation of an Open Source Platform (United States)

    Collins, Regina; Elliot, Norbert; Klobucar, Andrew; Deek, Fadi P.


    Assessment of educational outcomes through purchased tests is commonplace in the evaluation of individual student ability and of educational programs. Focusing on the assessment of writing performance in a longitudinal study of first-time, full-time students (n = 598), this research describes the design, use, and assessment of an open-source…

  16. Alternative Interpretations of Alternative Assessments: Some Validity Issues in Educational Performance. (United States)

    Bachman, Lyle F.


    Describes an approach to addressing issues of validity of inferences and the extrapolation of inferences to target domains beyond the assessment for alternative assessments. Makes the case that in both language testing and educational assessment the roles of language and content knowledge must be considered, and that the design and development of…

  17. Vulnerability Assessment of Open Source Wireshark and Chrome Browser (United States)


    and, when available, the developers. While FPVA is certainly a labor -intensive approach to vulnerability assessment, it is effective in real systems...Elisa Heymann, Eduardo Cesar and Barton P. Miller, “Automating Threat Modeling through the Software Development Life-Cycle”, XXIII Jornadas de

  18. An Open-Source Learning Content Management and Assessment System (United States)

    Kortemeyer, Gerd; Cruz, Émerson

    In this paper, we describe the development and functionality of the LearningOnline Network with CAPA (LON-CAPA; system. We summarize published findings obtained over the years regarding its content sharing and online assessment features, and present some new findings on gender differences in the usage of online homework.

  19. Open issues in testing liquidity in frontier financial markets: The case of Serbia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Minović Jelena Z.


    Full Text Available This paper examines the impact of illiquidity and liquidity risk on expected asset returns in the Serbian stock market. For this market we estimate the conditional Liquidity-adjusted Capital Asset Pricing Model (LCAPM of Acharya and Pedersen (2005. We use daily data for the period from 2005-2009. While the method developed is applicable in other markets this is the first paper that tests the LCAPM model in the case of Serbia. Liquidity risks are allowed to be timevarying. We find that for the Serbian market as a frontier market illiquidity and liquidity risk significantly impact price formation. For such a market the LCAPM may indeed be a good tool for realistic assessment of the expected asset returns.

  20. Algal biofuels: key issues, sustainability and life cycle assessment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Singh, Anoop; Olsen, Stig Irving


    (GHG) emissions to reduce the climate change effects. Among the various renewable energy sources algal biofuels is a very promising source of biomass as algae sequester huge quantities of carbon from atmosphere and are very efficient in utilizing the nutrients from the industrial effluent and municipal...... capital investment. The harvested algal biomass and its extracts can be efficiently converted to different biofuels such as bioethanol, biodiesel, biogas and biohydrogen by implementation of various process technologies. Comprehensive life cycle assessments (LCA) of algal biofuels illustrating...... wastewater. Algae capture CO2 from atmosphere and industrial flue gases and transform it in to organic biomass that can be used for the production of biofuels. Like other biomass, algal biomass is also a carbon neutral source for the production of bioenergy. Therefore cultivation of algal biomass provides...

  1. States and compacts: Issues and events affecting facility development efforts, including the Barnwell opening

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Larson, G.S.


    Ten years have passed since the first regional low-level radioactive waste compacts received Congressional consent and initiated their efforts to develop new disposal capacity. During these 10 years, both significant achievements and serious setbacks have marked our efforts and affect our current outlook. Recent events in the waste marketplace, particularly in the operating status of the Barnwell disposal facility, have now raised legitimate questions about the continued rationale for the regional framework that grew out of the original legislation enacted by Congress in 1980. At the same time, licensing activities for new regional disposal facilities are under way in three states, and a fourth awaits the final go-ahead to begin construction. Uncertainty over the meaning and reliability of the marketplace events makes it difficult to gauge long-term implications. In addition, differences in the status of individual state and compact facility development efforts lead to varying assessments of the influence these events will, or should, have on such efforts.

  2. Algal biofuels: key issues, sustainability and life cycle assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Singh, A.; Irving Olsen, S.


    In recent years research activities are intensively focused on renewable fuels in order to fulfill the increasing energy demand and to reduce the fossil fuels consumption and external oil dependency either in order to provide local energetic resources and or as a means for reducing greenhouse gases (GHG) emissions to reduce the climate change effects. Among the various renewable energy sources algal biofuels is a very promising source of biomass as algae sequester huge quantities of carbon from atmosphere and are very efficient in utilizing the nutrients from the industrial effluent and municipal wastewater. Algae capture CO{sub 2} from atmosphere and industrial flue gases and transform it in to organic biomass that can be used for the production of biofuels. Like other biomass, algal biomass is also a carbon neutral source for the production of bioenergy. Therefore cultivation of algal biomass provides dual benefits; while being able to utilize nutrients in waste water thus reducing impacts on inland waters it produce biomass for the production of biofuels. However, reaching commercial scale production of algal biofuels is difficult. The main drawbacks include the harvesting of dry biomass and higher capital investment. The harvested algal biomass and its extracts can be efficiently converted to different biofuels such as bioethanol, biodiesel, biogas and biohydrogen by implementation of various process technologies. Comprehensive life cycle assessments (LCA) of algal biofuels illustrating environmental benefits and impacts can be a tool for policy decisions and for technology development. (Author)

  3. Some Open Issues on Rockfall Hazard Analysis in Fractured Rock Mass: Problems and Prospects (United States)

    Ferrero, Anna Maria; Migliazza, Maria Rita; Pirulli, Marina; Umili, Gessica


    Risk is part of every sector of engineering design. It is a consequence of the uncertainties connected with the cognitive boundaries and with the natural variability of the relevant variables. In soil and rock engineering, in particular, uncertainties are linked to geometrical and mechanical aspects and the model used for the problem schematization. While the uncertainties due to the cognitive gaps could be filled by improving the quality of numerical codes and measuring instruments, nothing can be done to remove the randomness of natural variables, except defining their variability with stochastic approaches. Probabilistic analyses represent a useful tool to run parametric analyses and to identify the more significant aspects of a given phenomenon: They can be used for a rational quantification and mitigation of risk. The connection between the cognitive level and the probability of failure is at the base of the determination of hazard, which is often quantified through the assignment of safety factors. But these factors suffer from conceptual limits, which can be only overcome by adopting mathematical techniques with sound bases, not so used up to now (Einstein et al. in rock mechanics in civil and environmental engineering, CRC Press, London, 3-13, 2010; Brown in J Rock Mech Geotech Eng 4(3):193-204, 2012). The present paper describes the problems and the more reliable techniques used to quantify the uncertainties that characterize the large number of parameters that are involved in rock slope hazard assessment through a real case specifically related to rockfall. Limits of the existing approaches and future developments of the research are also provided.

  4. From Indicators to Policies: Open Sustainability Assessment in the Water and Sanitation Sector

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martín Alejandro Iribarnegaray


    Full Text Available A water and sanitation sustainability index (WASSI was developed and estimated in four cities of the province of Salta, in northern Argentina. The index was built with nine descriptors and fifteen indicators that covered all essential aspects of the sustainability of local water and sanitation management systems. Only one of the cities studied obtained a sustainability value above the acceptability threshold adopted (50 of 100 points. Results indicate that the water company needs to address some environmental and social issues to enhance the sustainability of the systems studied. The WASSI was conceptually robust and operationally simple, and could be easily adapted to the case studies. The index can be followed and updated online on a web site specially developed for this project. This website could be useful to promote participatory processes, assist decision makers, and facilitate academic research. According to local stakeholders, a more open sustainability assessment based on sustainability indices and supported by virtual tools would be relevant and highly feasible. It would help decision makers improve the sustainability and transparency of water and sanitation management systems, and promote more sustainable water policies in the region and beyond.

  5. Clinical Neuropathology practice guide 5-2015: MGMT methylation pyrosequencing in glioblastoma: unresolved issues and open questions. (United States)

    Bienkowski, Michal; Berghoff, Anna S; Marosi, Christine; Wöhrer, Adelheid; Heinzl, Harald; Hainfellner, Johannes A; Preusser, Matthias


    O6-methylguanine-methyltransferase (MGMT) promoter methylation status has prognostic and, in the subpopulation of elderly patients, predictive value in newly diagnosed glioblastoma. Therefore, knowledge of the MGMT promoter methylation status is important for clinical decision-making. So far, MGMT testing has been limited by the lack of a robust test with sufficiently high analytical performance. Recently, one of several available pyrosequencing protocols has been shown to be an accurate and robust method for MGMT testing in an intra- and interlaboratory ring trial. However, some uncertainties remain with regard to methodological issues, cut-off definitions, and optimal use in the clinical setting. In this article, we highlight and discuss several of these open questions. The main unresolved issues are the definition of the most relevant CpG sites to analyze for clinical purposes and the determination of a cut-off value for dichotomization of quantitative MGMT pyrosequencing results into "MGMT methylated" and "MGMT unmethylated" patient subgroups as a basis for further treatment decisions.

  6. 41 CFR 102-80.75 - Who assesses environmental issues in Federal construction and lease construction projects? (United States)


    ... environmental issues in Federal construction and lease construction projects? 102-80.75 Section 102-80.75 Public... Management Assessment of Environmental Issues § 102-80.75 Who assesses environmental issues in Federal construction and lease construction projects? Federal agencies must assess required environmental...

  7. Opening the Conversation on REU Assessment and Evaluation (United States)

    Pressley, S. N.; LeBeau, J. E.


    Project evaluation is a key component to ensuring success of any Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program. The Washington State University (WSU) Regional Atmospheric Chemistry: State-of-the-art Measurement and Modeling in the Pacific Northwest REU Site employs a mixed method approach to determine what is working well and what can use improvement (formative evaluation) and to determine impact and effectiveness of the project in reaching the stated goals (summative evaluation). Quantitative data is collected via a pre-/post-test measuring participants' research self-efficacy (RSE), motivation, background information, extent of socialization, and their interpretation of the value of the REU experience. Qualitative data is gathered through individual interviews with the REU students (at the beginning and end of the program) and faculty mentors (at the end). Beginning interviews focus on expectations for the REU program and student backgrounds. End interviews focus on student RSE development, interpretations of their experience, and the value of the experience. Faculty mentors are interviewed to gather insight on student performance in the program and perspectives on the overall success of the program in meeting the proposed goals. Students are provided an opportunity to comment on the strengths and weaknesses of workshops, providing critical feedback to the particular instructor and enabling the faculty to modify the workshop content and activities in future years. Finally, research results are evaluated during the final poster presentation, and faculty are interviewed to report on their perception of how each student learned and gained knowledge during the program. To evaluate the retention of students in engineering and science and identify chosen career paths, a longitudinal survey was created and it is administered via email each year. Many REU programs also employ the Undergraduate Research Students Self-Assessment (URSSA) online tool designed for

  8. Outcomes Assessment in the Networked Environment: Research Questions, Issues, Considerations, and Moving Forward. (United States)

    Bertot, John Carlo; McClure, Charles R.


    Identifies research topics related to outcomes assessment in a networked environment and discusses issues affecting these topics. Proposes a framework to relate traditional evaluation components and terminology to the networked environment and identifies factors in the networked environment that affect assessment methods. Suggests outcomes…

  9. Life Cycle Assessment of Farmed Salmon, Comparing a Closed with an Open Sea Cage System



    Ole Jonny Nyhus, Marine Technology, Norwegian University of Science and Technology.Abstract of Master's Thesis, levert 8. juni, 2014:Life Cycle Assessment of Farmed Salmon, Comparing a Closed with an Open Sea Cage System.The goal of this Master's Thesis is to do a Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) on a closed fish farm system and compare it to an open fish farm system, for so to make recommendations based on the results.Life Cycle Assessment is a method to calculate the environmental impa...

  10. Advanced directives: open issues

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabriella Negrini


    Full Text Available BACKGROUND In Italy Advanced directives have not been regulated by law yet. Moreover, there is a confusion of concepts: advanced directives, refusal of treatment, medical futility and euthanasia are not synonymous.DISCUSSION The following aspects are then discussed: object of directives; elapse of time between their expression and their application; knowledge of the directives and their obligatory nature. The refusal of a treatment that can save a person’s life is a critical subject. There are different ethical points of view: according to lay ethics, the patient’s self-determination prevails; the religious viewpoint, instead, says that life is a gift which we cannot dispose of. In any case, the patient will be confronted with the professional autonomy of the doctor. Should the doctor save a patient’s life in any case or should he achieve best clinical practice, in respect of his will? The doctor should interpret the patient’s will but with caution and judgment. An exemption from responsibility should be provided by law for doctors who respect patient’s living will.

  11. Current issues and actions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Black, D.G.


    This section of the 1994 Hanford Site Environmental Report summarizes the progress that has been made toward achieving full regulatory compliance at the Hanford Site. Ongoing compliance self-assessments, implementation of the Tri-Party Agreement, and public meetings continue to identify environmental compliance issues. These issues are discussed openly with the regulatory agencies and with the public to ensure that all environmental compliance issues are addressed.

  12. Review assessment support in Open Journal System using TextRank (United States)

    Manalu, S. R.; Willy; Sundjaja, A. M.; Noerlina


    In this paper, a review assessment support in Open Journal System (OJS) using TextRank is proposed. OJS is an open-source journal management platform that provides a streamlined journal publishing workflow. TextRank is an unsupervised, graph-based ranking model commonly used as extractive auto summarization of text documents. This study applies the TextRank algorithm to summarize 50 article reviews from an OJS-based international journal. The resulting summaries are formed using the most representative sentences extracted from the reviews. The summaries are then used to help OJS editors in assessing a review’s quality.

  13. Project-Based Learning and Agile Methodologies in Electronic Courses: Effect of Student Population and Open Issues

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marina Zapater


    Full Text Available Project-Based Learning (PBL and Agile methodologies have proven to be very interesting instructional strategies in Electronics and Engineering education, because they provide practical learning skills that help students understand the basis of electronics. In this paper we analyze two courses, one belonging to a Master in Electronic Engineering and one to a Bachelor in Telecommunication Engineering that apply Agile-PBL methodologies, and compare the results obtained in both courses with a traditional laboratory course. Our results support previous work stating that Agile-PBL methodologies increase student satisfaction. However, we also highlight some open issues that negatively affect the implementation of these methodologies,such as planning overhead or accidental complexity. Moreover,we show how differences in the student population, mostly related to the time spent on-campus, their commitment to the course or part-time dedication, have an impact on the benefits of Agile-PBL methods. In these cases, Agile-PBL methodologies by themselves are not enough and need to be combined with other techniques to increase student motivation.

  14. Spatializing Open Data for the Assessment and the Improvement of Territorial and Social Cohesion (United States)

    Scorza, F.; Las Casas, G. B.; Murgante, B.


    An integrated place-based approach for the improvement of territorial and social cohesion is the new instance for planning disciplines, coming from EU New Cohesion Policies. This paper considers the territorial impact assessment of regional development policies as a precondition in order to develop balanced and effective operative programs at national and regional levels. The contribution of `open data' appears to be mature in order to support this application and in this paper we present a spatial analysis technique for the evaluation of EU funds effects at territorial level, starting from open data by Open Cohesion. The application is focused on internal areas of Basilicata Region: Agri river Valley. A complex contest, where environmental and agricultural traditional vocations conflict with a recent development of oil extraction industries. Conclusions concern further applications and perspectives to improve and support regional development planning considering the exploitation of open data sources and spatial analysis.

  15. Assessing Argumentative Representation with Bayesian Network Models in Debatable Social Issues (United States)

    Zhang, Zhidong; Lu, Jingyan


    This study seeks to obtain argumentation models, which represent argumentative processes and an assessment structure in secondary school debatable issues in the social sciences. The argumentation model was developed based on mixed methods, a combination of both theory-driven and data-driven methods. The coding system provided a combing point by…

  16. Assessment of BSBA Students' Conversancy in Current Business Issues: A Case Study (United States)

    Hogan, Eileen A.; Maskulka, Therese A.; Kaminski, Kathleen A.


    In 2008, the faculty of the College of Business at Kutztown University developed a set of five learning goals for its BSBA program. In fall, 2011, the college's Assurance of Learning Committee began to pursue the assessment of the last of these goals: "BSBA graduates will be conversant in current business issues, including ethics, social…

  17. Key Issues in Sex Education: Reflecting on Teaching, Learning and Assessment (United States)

    Oerton, Sarah; Bowen, Helen


    Drawing upon critical reflections of staff and student experiences of teaching, learning and assessment on an undergraduate module entitled Key Issues in Sex Education, we discuss the strategies used to engage students in debates around sex and relationships education (SRE). To date, there is little research which evaluates how formal assessments…

  18. Ethical Issues in the Assessment and Treatment of a Rational Suicidal Client. (United States)

    Snipe, Rosetta M.


    Notes that rational client's decision to commit suicide may present complex ethical issues for therapist. Presents and discusses three-month account of therapy with client, from perspective of ethical values and principles upon which assessment and treatment decisions were made, and complex ethical dilemmas encountered as therapist juxtaposed…

  19. A Policy Analysis and Quantitative Assessment of Key Issues Arising from Climate Change Negotiations Following COP 7

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sager, J. M


    This paper aims to assess the consequences of the amendments made to the Kyoto Protocol during COP 7 in Marrakech. Following a comprehensive policy analysis, the major issue of 'hot air' and CDM transaction costs is examined using the CERT model. This was done to show that primary supply regions, typically those with 'hot air' availability, might control the emissions reduction permit supply market and maximise net export revenues of permit supply by withholding 40 to 60% of available 'hot air' credits. The assumption that primary permit suppliers control permit price via a restriction of 'hot air' supply to the market will inadvertently leave a portion of the market share open to Non-Annex B CDM supply, despite potentially extreme variance in CDM transaction costs. A summary table of policy implications on the emissions reduction permit market is also included in the Appendix. (author)

  20. Impacts on non-human biota from a generic geological disposal facility for radioactive waste: some key assessment issues

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Robinson, C A; Smith, K L [Enviros Consulting Limited, 61 The Shore, Leith, Edinburgh EH6 6RA (United Kingdom); Norris, S, E-mail: [Nuclear Decommissioning Authority, Radioactive Waste Management Directorate, Harwell Science and Innovation Campus, Curie Avenue, Harwell, Didcot OX11 0RH (United Kingdom)


    This paper provides an overview of key issues associated with the application of currently available biota dose assessment methods to consideration of potential environmental impacts from geological disposal facilities. It explores philosophical, methodological and practical assessment issues and reviews the implications of test assessment results in the context of recent and on-going challenges and debates.

  1. Effect of noise on comfort in open-plan offices: application of an assessment questionnaire. (United States)

    Perrin Jegen, N; Chevret, P


    Open-plan offices account for 60% of French office workspaces. The noise levels recorded in this type of environment are much lower than those encountered in industrial workplaces. Nevertheless, surveys show that noise is considered by employees as the main source of discomfort. A first questionnaire dedicated to noise discomfort was produced in 2013 and tested on a panel made up of 217 people working in 7 French companies. Today, it also makes it possible to address the issues of fatigue related to ambient sound, but above all, the survey aims to study the differences in how ambient noise is perceived depending on the type of open-plan office. On the basis of that new version, a second survey has been conducted in 23 open-plan offices, making it possible to collect the responses from 617 employees. Most of the results of the first survey have been confirmed, with an increase in the significance of the statistical analyses. Moreover, French Standard NF S 31-199, which is currently being drafted, establishes a typology of open-plan office spaces according to the types of work done in them. Based on this typology, it appears that when dealing with the impact on noise on workers, a distinction has to be made between the types of open plan offices. Practitioner Summary: Surveys conducted in open-plan offices show that noise is considered by employees as the main source of discomfort even if the noise recorded in this type of environment is not hazardous. This work presents the result of a large survey dedicated to noise discomfort conducted in 23 open-plan offices.

  2. Life-cycle impact assessment: A conceptual framework, key issues, and summary of existing methods

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)



    Life-Cycle Assessment (LCA) is a holistic concept and approach for evaluating the environmental and human health impacts associated with a product, process, or activity. A complete LCA looks upstream and down stream, identifies inputs and outputs, and assesses the potential effects of those inputs and outputs on ecosystems, human health, and natural resoures. This report presents a conceptual framework for conducting a life-cycle impact assessment (LCIA), discusses major issues, and summarizes existing methods. It also identifies some of the advantages and disadvantages of various methods.

  3. Improving hospital performance: issues in assessing the impact of TQM activities. (United States)

    Counte, M A; Glandon, G L; Oleske, D M; Hill, J P


    Despite numerous published reports of the need for TQM activities in health care organizations and their widespread diffusion within the health care industry, whether they make a difference remains an unresolved issue. In this article, we discuss the major reasons why the impacts of TQM should be assessed, what needs to be measured during assessment activities, and significant methodological issues that can confound the evaluation of TQM effects. An audit framework is described that can be used to depict the types of effects that TQM may have on the performance of health care organizations. Assessment guidelines are offered that will hopefully benefit the future efforts of institutional managers and health services researchers in their attempts to determine whether TQM activities do in fact make a significant difference.

  4. Climate and climate-related issues for the safety assessment SR-Can

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Naeslund, Jens-Ove (comp.)


    The purpose of this report is to document current scientific knowledge of the climate-related conditions and processes relevant to the long-term safety of a KBS-3 repository to a level required for an adequate treatment in the safety assessment SR-Can. The report also includes a concise background description of the climate system. The report includes three main chapters: A description of the climate system (Chapter 2); Identification and discussion of climate-related issues (Chapter 3); and, A description of the evolution of climate-related conditions for the safety assessment (Chapter 4). Chapter 2 includes an overview of present knowledge of the Earth climate system and the climate conditions that can be expected to occur in Sweden on a 100,000 year time perspective. Based on this, climate-related issues relevant for the long-term safety of a KBS-3 repository are identified. These are documented in Chapter 3 'Climate-related issues' to a level required for an adequate treatment in the safety assessment. Finally, in Chapter 4, 'Evolution of climate-related conditions for the safety assessment' an evolution for a 120,000 year period is presented, including discussions of identified climate-related issues of importance for repository safety. The documentation is from a scientific point of view not exhaustive, since such a treatment is neither necessary for the purposes of the safety assessment nor possible within the scope of a safety assessment. As further described in the SR-Can Main Report and in the Features Events and Processes report, the content of the present report has been audited by comparison with FEP databases compiled in other assessment projects. This report follows as far as possible the template for documentation of processes regarded as internal to the repository system. However, the term processes is not used in this report, instead the term issue has been used. Each issue includes a set of processes together resulting in the

  5. Rubric Design for Separating the Roles of Open-Ended Assessments

    CERN Document Server

    Doughty, Leanne


    End-of-course assessments play important roles in the ongoing attempt to improve instruction in physics courses. Comparison of students' performance on assessments before and after instruction gives a measure of student learning. In addition, analysis of students' answers to assessment items provides insight into students' difficulties with specific concepts and practices. While open-ended assessments scored with detailed rubrics provide useful information about student reasoning to researchers, end users need to score students' responses so that they may obtain meaningful feedback on their instruction. One solution that satisfies end users and researchers is a grading rubric that separates scoring student work and uncovering student difficulties. We have constructed a separable rubric for the Colorado Classical Mechanics/Math Methods Instrument that has been used by untrained graders to score the assessment reliably, and by researchers to unpack common student difficulties. Here we present rubric development...

  6. Risk assessment for produced water discharges to Louisiana open bays. Final report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Meinhold, A.F.; DePhillips, M.P.; Holtzman, S.


    The US Department of Energy (USDOE) has a program of research in the environmental aspects of oil and gas extraction. This sampling project will characterize the environmental impacts associated with the discharge of naturally occurring radioactive materials (NORM), metals and organics in produced water. This report is part of a series of studies of the health and ecological risks from discharges of produced water to the Gulf of Mexico, supported by the USDOE. These assessments are being coordinated with the field study, using the collected data to perform human health and ecological risk assessments. These assessments will provide input to regulators in the development of guidelines and permits, and to industry in the development and use of appropriate discharge practices. The initial human health and ecological risk assessments consist of conservative screening analyses meant to identify potentially important contaminants, and to eliminate others from further consideration. More quantitative assessments were done for contaminants identified, in the screening analysis, as being of potential concern. Section 2 gives an overview of human health and ecological risk assessment to help put the analyses presented here in perspective. Section 3 provides the hazard assessment portion of the risk assessment, and identifies the important receptors and pathways of concern. Section 3 also outlines the approach taken to the risk assessments presented in the rest of the report. The remaining sections (4 through 9) present the human health and ecological risk assessments for discharges of produced water to open bays in Louisiana.

  7. Open issues in hyperspectral imaging for diagnostics on paintings: when high-spectral and spatial resolution turns into data redundancy (United States)

    Cucci, Costanza; Casini, Andrea; Picollo, Marcello; Poggesi, Marco; Stefani, Lorenzo


    Hyper-Spectral Imaging (HSI) has emerged in the last decade as one of the most promising technologies for diagnostics and documentation of polychrome surfaces. Despite the fact that presently HSI is a well-established technique for non-invasive investigations on paintings, a number of technological issues remain open and are still topics for on-going studies. In particular, it is known that high spatial resolution is a crucial parameter for obtaining high quality images, whereas the possibility to identify pictorial materials strictly depends on the spectral resolution and on the extent of the spectral region investigated. At the same time, by increasing the sampling rates in both the spatial and spectral dimensions, the size of the data-set will be enlarged and the acquisition times will be lengthened. As a consequence, a good compromise between the acquisition of highquality data and their application should always be reached, taking into account the specific purposes of the HSI application. The above questions are discussed in the present work, which illustrates two applications of the latest version of a hyperspectral scanner designed at IFAC-CNR for the digitization of artworks. The prototype has recently been upgraded, with new visualization software as well as mechanical and optical improvements. This high performance system operates in the 400-1000nm spectral range, with a spectral resolution of about 2-3 nm and a spatial sampling of 0.1 mm over areas of about 1 m2. Three case-studies are presented, which highlight the importance of both high spatial and high spectral sampling rate in hyperspectral imaging. Two of the examples reported focus on the full exploitation of the spatial resolution: the first one is a study performed on a small painting, dated from the eighteenth century and belonging to the Uffizi Gallery in Florence; the second case-study refers to the valuable "Carrand diptych" (14th century) from the Bargello Museum in Florence. The last

  8. Biodiversity, ecosystem functions and services in environmental risk assessment: introduction to the special issue. (United States)

    Schäfer, Ralf B


    This Special Issue focuses on the questions if and how biodiversity, ecosystem functions and resulting services could be incorporated into the Ecological Risk Assessment (ERA). Therefore, three articles provide a framework for the integration of ecosystem services into ERA of soils, sediments and pesticides. Further articles demonstrate ways how stakeholders can be integrated into an ecosystem service-based ERA for soils and describe how the current monitoring could be adapted to new assessment endpoints that are directly linked to ecosystem services. Case studies show that the current ERA may not be protective for biodiversity, ecosystem functions and resulting services and that both pesticides and salinity currently adversely affect ecosystem functions in the field. Moreover, ecological models can be used for prediction of new protection goals and could finally support their implementation into the ERA. Overall, the Special Issue stresses the urgent need to enhance current procedures of ERA if biodiversity, ecosystem functions and resulting services are to be protected.

  9. Final Review of Safety Assessment Issues at Savannah River Site, August 2011

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Napier, Bruce A.; Rishel, Jeremy P.; Bixler, Nathan E.


    At the request of Savannah River Nuclear Solutions (SRNS) management, a review team composed of experts in atmospheric transport modeling for environmental radiation dose assessment convened at the Savannah River Site (SRS) on August 29-30, 2011. Though the meeting was prompted initially by suspected issues related to the treatment of surface roughness inherent in the SRS meteorological dataset and its treatment in the MELCOR Accident Consequence Code System Version 2 (MACCS2), various topical areas were discussed that are relevant to performing safety assessments at SRS; this final report addresses these topical areas.

  10. Assessing the Value of the OpenOrbiter Program’s Research Experience for Undergraduates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeremy Straub


    Full Text Available This article presents an assessment of the benefits gained by undergraduate students who participated in the OpenOrbiter Small Spacecraft Development Initiative. It provides an overview of the program and its learning objectives, as they apply to undergraduate students. It compares the learning impact between students who participated and those who assumed leadership roles. Qualitative assessment with regard to benefits is also discussed. The article extrapolates from these results to identify program elements that were particularly instrumental in delivering the positive benefits discussed. Finally, future work is discussed.

  11. Web-MCQ: a set of methods and freely available open source code for administering online multiple choice question assessments. (United States)

    Hewson, Claire


    E-learning approaches have received increasing attention in recent years. Accordingly, a number of tools have become available to assist the nonexpert computer user in constructing and managing virtual learning environments, and implementing computer-based and/or online procedures to support pedagogy. Both commercial and free packages are now available, with new developments emerging periodically. Commercial products have the advantage of being comprehensive and reliable, but tend to require substantial financial investment and are not always transparent to use. They may also restrict pedagogical choices due to their predetermined ranges of functionality. With these issues in mind, several authors have argued for the pedagogical benefits of developing freely available, open source e-learning resources, which can be shared and further developed within a community of educational practitioners. The present paper supports this objective by presenting a set of methods, along with supporting freely available, downloadable, open source programming code, to allow administration of online multiple choice question assessments to students.

  12. Assessing open-system behavior of 14C in terrestrial gastropod shells (United States)

    Rech, Jason A.; Pigati, Jeffrey S.; Lehmann, Sophie B.; McGimpsey, Chelsea N.; Grimley, David A.; Nekola, Jeffrey C.


    In order to assess open-system behavior of radiocarbon in fossil gastropod shells, we measured the 14C activity on 10 aliquots of shell material recovered from Illinoian (~190-130 ka) and pre-Illinoian (~800 ka) loess and lacustrine deposits in the Midwestern USA. Eight of the 10 aliquots yielded measurable 14C activities that ranged from 0.25 to 0.53 percent modern carbon (pMC), corresponding to apparent 14C ages between 48.2 and 42.1 ka. This small level of open-system behavior is common in many materials that are used for 14C dating (e.g. charcoal), and typically sets the upper practical limit of the technique. Two aliquots of gastropod shells from the Illinoian-aged Petersburg Silt (Petersburg Section) in central Illinois, USA, however, yielded elevated 14C activities of 1.26 and 1.71 pMC, which correspond to apparent 14C ages of 35.1 and 32.7 ka. Together, these results suggest that while many fossil gastropods shells may not suffer from major (>1%) open-system problems, this is not always the case. We then examined the mineralogy, trace element chemistry, and physical characteristics of a suite of fossil and modern gastropod shells to identify the source of contamination in the Petersburg shells and assess the effectiveness of these screening techniques at identifying samples suitable for 14C dating. Mineralogical (XRD) and trace element analyses were inconclusive, which suggests that these techniques are not suitable for assessing open-system behavior in terrestrial gastropod shells. Analysis with scanning electron microscopy (SEM), however, identified secondary mineralization (calcium carbonate) primarily within the inner whorls of the Petersburg shells. This indicates that SEM examination, or possibly standard microscope examination, of the interior of gastropod shells should be used when selecting fossil gastropod shells for 14C dating.

  13. Quantifying volcanic hazard at Campi Flegrei caldera (Italy) with uncertainty assessment: 1. Vent opening maps (United States)

    Bevilacqua, Andrea; Isaia, Roberto; Neri, Augusto; Vitale, Stefano; Aspinall, Willy P.; Bisson, Marina; Flandoli, Franco; Baxter, Peter J.; Bertagnini, Antonella; Esposti Ongaro, Tomaso; Iannuzzi, Enrico; Pistolesi, Marco; Rosi, Mauro


    Campi Flegrei is an active volcanic area situated in the Campanian Plain (Italy) and dominated by a resurgent caldera. The great majority of past eruptions have been explosive, variable in magnitude, intensity, and in their vent locations. In this hazard assessment study we present a probabilistic analysis using a variety of volcanological data sets to map the background spatial probability of vent opening conditional on the occurrence of an event in the foreseeable future. The analysis focuses on the reconstruction of the location of past eruptive vents in the last 15 ka, including the distribution of faults and surface fractures as being representative of areas of crustal weakness. One of our key objectives was to incorporate some of the main sources of epistemic uncertainty about the volcanic system through a structured expert elicitation, thereby quantifying uncertainties for certain important model parameters and allowing outcomes from different expert weighting models to be evaluated. Results indicate that past vent locations are the most informative factors governing the probabilities of vent opening, followed by the locations of faults and then fractures. Our vent opening probability maps highlight the presence of a sizeable region in the central eastern part of the caldera where the likelihood of new vent opening per kilometer squared is about 6 times higher than the baseline value for the whole caldera. While these probability values have substantial uncertainties associated with them, our findings provide a rational basis for hazard mapping of the next eruption at Campi Flegrei caldera.

  14. Workshop on rock mechanics issues in repository design and performance assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)



    The Center for Nuclear Waste Regulatory Analyses organized and hosted a workshop on ``Rock Mechanics Issues in Repository Design and Performance Assessment`` on behalf its sponsor the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). This workshop was held on September 19- 20, 1994 at the Holiday Inn Crowne Plaza, Rockville, Maryland. The objectives of the workshop were to stimulate exchange of technical information among parties actively investigating rock mechanics issues relevant to the proposed high-level waste repository at Yucca Mountain and identify/confirm rock mechanics issues important to repository design and performance assessment The workshop contained three technical sessions and two panel discussions. The participants included technical and research staffs representing the NRC and the Department of Energy and their contractors, as well as researchers from the academic, commercial, and international technical communities. These proceedings include most of the technical papers presented in the technical sessions and the transcripts for the two panel discussions. Selected papers have been indexed separately for inclusion the Energy Science and Technology Database.

  15. Sustainable Sourcing of Global Agricultural Raw Materials: Assessing Gaps in Key Impact and Vulnerability Issues and Indicators.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nathaniel P Springer

    Full Text Available Understanding how to source agricultural raw materials sustainably is challenging in today's globalized food system given the variety of issues to be considered and the multitude of suggested indicators for representing these issues. Furthermore, stakeholders in the global food system both impact these issues and are themselves vulnerable to these issues, an important duality that is often implied but not explicitly described. The attention given to these issues and conceptual frameworks varies greatly--depending largely on the stakeholder perspective--as does the set of indicators developed to measure them. To better structure these complex relationships and assess any gaps, we collate a comprehensive list of sustainability issues and a database of sustainability indicators to represent them. To assure a breadth of inclusion, the issues are pulled from the following three perspectives: major global sustainability assessments, sustainability communications from global food companies, and conceptual frameworks of sustainable livelihoods from academic publications. These terms are integrated across perspectives using a common vocabulary, classified by their relevance to impacts and vulnerabilities, and categorized into groups by economic, environmental, physical, human, social, and political characteristics. These issues are then associated with over 2,000 sustainability indicators gathered from existing sources. A gap analysis is then performed to determine if particular issues and issue groups are over or underrepresented. This process results in 44 "integrated" issues--24 impact issues and 36 vulnerability issues--that are composed of 318 "component" issues. The gap analysis shows that although every integrated issue is mentioned at least 40% of the time across perspectives, no issue is mentioned more than 70% of the time. A few issues infrequently mentioned across perspectives also have relatively few indicators available to fully represent

  16. Sustainable Sourcing of Global Agricultural Raw Materials: Assessing Gaps in Key Impact and Vulnerability Issues and Indicators. (United States)

    Springer, Nathaniel P; Garbach, Kelly; Guillozet, Kathleen; Haden, Van R; Hedao, Prashant; Hollander, Allan D; Huber, Patrick R; Ingersoll, Christina; Langner, Megan; Lipari, Genevieve; Mohammadi, Yaser; Musker, Ruthie; Piatto, Marina; Riggle, Courtney; Schweisguth, Melissa; Sin, Emily; Snider, Sara; Vidic, Nataša; White, Aubrey; Brodt, Sonja; Quinn, James F; Tomich, Thomas P


    Understanding how to source agricultural raw materials sustainably is challenging in today's globalized food system given the variety of issues to be considered and the multitude of suggested indicators for representing these issues. Furthermore, stakeholders in the global food system both impact these issues and are themselves vulnerable to these issues, an important duality that is often implied but not explicitly described. The attention given to these issues and conceptual frameworks varies greatly--depending largely on the stakeholder perspective--as does the set of indicators developed to measure them. To better structure these complex relationships and assess any gaps, we collate a comprehensive list of sustainability issues and a database of sustainability indicators to represent them. To assure a breadth of inclusion, the issues are pulled from the following three perspectives: major global sustainability assessments, sustainability communications from global food companies, and conceptual frameworks of sustainable livelihoods from academic publications. These terms are integrated across perspectives using a common vocabulary, classified by their relevance to impacts and vulnerabilities, and categorized into groups by economic, environmental, physical, human, social, and political characteristics. These issues are then associated with over 2,000 sustainability indicators gathered from existing sources. A gap analysis is then performed to determine if particular issues and issue groups are over or underrepresented. This process results in 44 "integrated" issues--24 impact issues and 36 vulnerability issues--that are composed of 318 "component" issues. The gap analysis shows that although every integrated issue is mentioned at least 40% of the time across perspectives, no issue is mentioned more than 70% of the time. A few issues infrequently mentioned across perspectives also have relatively few indicators available to fully represent them. Issues in the

  17. Ethics Issues of Digital Contents for Pre-Service Primary Teachers: A Gamification Experience for Self-Assessment with Socrative

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adolfina Pérez-Garcias


    Full Text Available The knowledge society has brought many possibilities for open education practices and, simultaneously, deep ethical challenges related to the use, sharing and reuse of digital content. In fact, even at university level, many undergraduate students do not respect the licences of digital resources. As part of the contents of a third-year educational technology course for primary teacher training at the University of the Balearic Islands (Spain, prospective teachers learned about these ethics issues. During the 2015/16 academic year, 125 pre-service teachers from two groups of this course were involved in a gamification experience, using Socrative in real-time in the classroom, in which they had to answer different questions related to digital ethics. Its aim was not only to find out what they knew before working directly with the topic – an initial self-assessment – but also to arouse interest and encourage dynamic participation and interaction. At the end of the course, the participants answered a questionnaire in which they were asked about their perceptions of the use of this kind of educational strategy and their transfer in the future. Data were also collected from the same Socrative quiz and the final exam results related to digital ethics. Overall, the assessment from pre-service teachers was highly positive, as well as the scores of the questions related to digital ethics in the final test, and the conclusions of this study highlight both the importance of using more interactive educational strategies in the classroom and the need for training on digital ethics issues in teacher studies.

  18. Assessment of computational issues associated with analysis of high-lift systems (United States)

    Balasubramanian, R.; Jones, Kenneth M.; Waggoner, Edgar G.


    Thin-layer Navier-Stokes calculations for wing-fuselage configurations from subsonic to hypersonic flow regimes are now possible. However, efficient, accurate solutions for using these codes for two- and three-dimensional high-lift systems have yet to be realized. A brief overview of salient experimental and computational research is presented. An assessment of the state-of-the-art relative to high-lift system analysis and identification of issues related to grid generation and flow physics which are crucial for computational success in this area are also provided. Research in support of the high-lift elements of NASA's High Speed Research and Advanced Subsonic Transport Programs which addresses some of the computational issues is presented. Finally, fruitful areas of concentrated research are identified to accelerate overall progress for high lift system analysis and design.

  19. Information resources for assessing health effects from chemical exposure: Challenges, priorities, and future issues

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Seigel, S. [National Library of Medicine, Bethesda, MD (United States)


    Issues related to developing information resources for assessing the health effects from chemical exposure include the question of how to address the individual political issues relevant to identifying and determining the timeliness, scientific credibility, and completeness of such kinds of information resources. One of the important ways for agencies to share information is through connection tables. This type of software is presently being used to build information products for some DHHS agencies. One of the challenges will be to convince vendors of data of the importance of trying to make data files available to communities that need them. In the future, information processing will be conducted with neural networks, object-oriented database management systems, and fuzzy-set technologies, and meta analysis techniques.

  20. Regulation of natural gas: the issue of open access; Regulacao em materia de gas natural: a questao do livre acesso

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sandes, Ingrid; Siqueira, Mariana [Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte (UFRN), Natal, RN (Brazil). Faculdade de Direito


    The present work discusses the question of the open access to the natural gas ducts, trying to show the most relevant aspects of it. Analyzing the regulation existent in Brazil and the main important characteristics of the natural gas activities, it will be tried to suggest new directions to be taken in the future. The open access it is a very important way to introduce new agents on the sector and, in that way, the discussions that try to show new aspects of it, are very relevant (author)

  1. Assessing psychiatric rehabilitation service (PRS) outcomes in Israel: conceptual, professional and social issues. (United States)

    Roe, David; Gross, Raz; Kravetz, Shlomo; Baloush-Kleinman, Vered; Rudnick, Abraham


    Since the implementation of the legislation in Israel concerning rehabilitation of people with psychiatric disabilities in the community in 2001, an increasing number of individuals, currently estimated at nearly 15,000, have been receiving the psychiatric rehabilitation "basket of services." A systematic investigation of the extent to which these services have had a positive impact on the intended outcome is required, to evaluate the effectiveness of the newly developed psychiatric rehabilitation basket of services. This evaluation has become a priority item on the mental health agenda in Israel. This opinion paper, based on a conceptual analysis and selective review of the relevant literature, discusses concepts and principles that seem important for the development of strategies to constructively assess the outcome of psychiatric rehabilitation services (PRS) in Israel. More specifically, several fundamental issues related to outcome monitoring are reviewed, such as what outcome domains should be assessed, who should conduct the assessments and from whom should data be collected and with whom and how should it be shared. The complexity of these issues are reviewed and possible strategies to deal with them are discussed.

  2. Protocol of the project pain & disasters: assessment of critical issues and possible solutions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniele Mipatrini


    Full Text Available Background: Disasters cause almost 100 thousand deaths and affect 200 million people every year. Operators working in disaster zones reported problems in importing medications, in particular pain killers and narcotics, in areas of disasters. The importance of ensuring access to painkillers, including major analgesics, is pinpointed by the World Health Organization which through its “Access to Controlled Medications Programme” provides normative guidance, policy analysis and training of healthcare workers on this issue. Nevertheless the little evidence available on the assessment and treatment of pain in disasters suggests that the management of pain in disaster zones may be affected by several factors mainly due to the availability of drugs, the skills of health personnel and cultural issues. Aim:The main aims of this project are: evaluating whether pain is correctly assessed and treated in disaster zones, assessing which are the main limitations to its treatment and producing suggestions and reccomandations to improve its treatment. Materials & Methods: In order to achieve our aims we will adopt a combined approach made by: A systematic review of the evidence will be conducted in the scientific databases Medline and Scopus. A review of grey literature concerning the issue on the Web pages of international organizations and NGOs working in the field of humanitarian aid. A survey among healthcare workers who took part to the international humanitarian actions. A survey among expert of the humanitarian field not necessary involved in projects on the field e.g. lawyer expert in international law, international organizations representatives working in the headquarters etc. A technical table with European experts in the field of pain treatment and/or disaster reaponse.

  3. Assessment of policy issues in nuclear safety regulation according to circumstantial changes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chang, Soon Heung; Lee, Byong Ho; Baek, Won Pil; Lee, Kwang Gu; Huh, Gyun Young; Hahn, Young Tae [Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, Taejon (Korea, Republic of)


    The objective of the work is to assess various issues in nuclear safety regulation in consideration of circumstantial changes. Emphasis is given to the safety of operating NPPs. It is concluded that the Periodic Safety Review (PSR) should be implemented in Korea as soon as possible, in harmonization with the regulation for life extension of NPPs. The IAEA guidelines, including 10 year intervals and 11 safety factors, should be used as the basic guidelines. The approach to improve regulatory effectiveness is also reviewed and a transition to 'knowledge-based regulation' is suggested.

  4. Methodological issues of assessing the effects of social inequality in Russia’s regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ol’ga Anatol’evna Kozlova


    Full Text Available The article deals with the issue concerning the assessment of the impact of social inequality on the socio-demographic characteristics of society. The authors evaluate the impact of the social inequality growth in the Russian Federation subjects on the basis of the analysis of the decile ratio dynamics. They propose a methodological approach to determine the degree of dependence of crime rate on the growth of social inequality. The authors compare the influence of the decile ratio and purchasing power on mortality rate in the regions of Russia

  5. Ecological monitoring for assessing the state of the nearshore and open waters of the Great Lakes (United States)

    Neilson, Melanie A.; Painter, D. Scott; Warren, Glenn; Hites, Ronald A.; Basu, Ilora; Weseloh, D.V. Chip; Whittle, D. Michael; Christie, Gavin; Barbiero, Richard; Tuchman, Marc; Johannsson, Ora E.; Nalepa, Thomas F.; Edsall, Thomas A.; Fleischer, Guy; Bronte, Charles; Smith, Stephen B.; Baumann, Paul C.


    The Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement stipulates that the Governments of Canada and the United States are responsible for restoring and maintaining the chemical, physical and biological integrity of the waters of the Great Lakes Basin Ecosystem. Due to varying mandates and areas of expertise, monitoring to assess progress towards this objective is conducted by a multitude of Canadian and U.S. federal and provincial/state agencies, in cooperation with academia and regional authorities. This paper highlights selected long-term monitoring programs and discusses a number of documented ecological changes that indicate the present state of the open and nearshore waters of the Great Lakes.

  6. Assessment challenges in open learning: Way-finding, fork in the road, or end of the line?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dianne Conrad


    Full Text Available Growing global commitments to open learning through the use of Open Educational Resources (OERs are accompanied by concerns over what “to do” with that learning when learners present it to traditional institutions for assessment and accreditation. This paper proposes that established RPL (recognizing prior learningprotocols, in place at many institutions worldwide, can offer a pedagogically sound framework that supports the spirit of open learning and respects the diversity of learners’ efforts.

  7. The Issues and Methodologies in Sustainability Assessment Tools for Higher Education Institutions: A Review of Recent Trends and Future Challenges (United States)

    Yarime, Masaru; Tanaka, Yuko


    Assessment tools influence incentives to higher education institutions by encouraging them to move towards sustainability. A review of 16 sustainability assessment tools was conducted to examine the recent trends in the issues and methodologies addressed in assessment tools quantitatively and qualitatively. The characteristics of the current…

  8. Assessment Update: Progress, Trends, and Practices in Higher Education. Volume 25, Issue 5, September-October 2013 (United States)

    Banta, Trudy W., Ed.


    This issue of "Assessment Update" presents the following articles: (1) Through the Rearview Looking Glass: Collaborative Writing and the Accreditation Self-Study; (2) Editor's Notes: Another Glimpse of Evaluation in China; (3) Assessment Is Not a Spectator Sport: Experiencing Authentic Assessment in the Classroom; (4) Faculty Development…

  9. Issues in the psychopharmacologic assessment and treatment of the orthodox Jewish patient. (United States)

    Feinberg, S Shalom


    As with members of other cultural and religious groups, patients within the Orthodox Jewish community present with their own distinct clinical psychiatric issues related to their unique beliefs and practices. This article reviews the existing literature and anecdotal experience on the psychopharmacologic assessment and treatment of Orthodox Jewish patients. Specific aspects examined include this group's perceived intense stigma in receiving treatment, the priority this community places on cognitive functioning, and how the influence of Jewish laws on marriage and sexual practices impacts one's treatment decisions. The relevance of Jewish dietary laws, the Sabbath, and the community's interest in alternative treatments are also discussed. The limited ethno-psychopharmacology research related to Orthodox Jewish psychiatric patients is reviewed. We conclude that understanding issues such as these is critical if one is going to work within this cultural system in order to successfully address their mental health issues. However, the dearth of controlled research in this community needs to be addressed to provide more effective treatment.

  10. An open trial assessment of "The Number Race", an adaptive computer game for remediation of dyscalculia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cohen Laurent


    Full Text Available Abstract Background In a companion article 1, we described the development and evaluation of software designed to remediate dyscalculia. This software is based on the hypothesis that dyscalculia is due to a "core deficit" in number sense or in its access via symbolic information. Here we review the evidence for this hypothesis, and present results from an initial open-trial test of the software in a sample of nine 7–9 year old children with mathematical difficulties. Methods Children completed adaptive training on numerical comparison for half an hour a day, four days a week over a period of five-weeks. They were tested before and after intervention on their performance in core numerical tasks: counting, transcoding, base-10 comprehension, enumeration, addition, subtraction, and symbolic and non-symbolic numerical comparison. Results Children showed specific increases in performance on core number sense tasks. Speed of subitizing and numerical comparison increased by several hundred msec. Subtraction accuracy increased by an average of 23%. Performance on addition and base-10 comprehension tasks did not improve over the period of the study. Conclusion Initial open-trial testing showed promising results, and suggested that the software was successful in increasing number sense over the short period of the study. However these results need to be followed up with larger, controlled studies. The issues of transfer to higher-level tasks, and of the best developmental time window for intervention also need to be addressed.

  11. Online Higher Education Instruction to Foster Critical Thinking When Assessing Environmental Issues - the Brownfield Action Model (United States)

    Bower, Peter; Liddicoat, Joseph; Dittrick, Diane; Maenza-Gmelch, Terryanne; Kelsey, Ryan


    According to the Environmental Protection Agency, there are presently over half a million brownfields in the United States, but this number only includes sites for which an Environmental Site Assessment has been conducted. The actual number of brownfields is certainly into the millions and constitutes one of the major environmental issues confronting all communities today. Taught in part online for more than a decade in environmental science courses at over a dozen colleges, universities, and high schools in the United States, Brownfield Action (BA) is an interactive, web-based simulation that combines scientific expertise, constructivist education philosophy, and multimedia to advance the teaching of environmental science (Bower et al., 2011). In the online simulation and classroom, students form geotechnical consulting companies, conduct environmental site assessment investigations, and work collaboratively to solve a problem in environmental forensics. The BA model contains interdisciplinary scientific and social information that are integrated within a digital learning environment that encourages students to construct their knowledge as they learn by doing. As such, the approach improves the depth and coherence of students understanding of the course material. Like real-world environmental consultants, students are required to develop and apply expertise from a wide range of fields, including environmental science and engineering as well as journalism, medicine, public health, law, civics, economics, and business management. The overall objective is for students to gain an unprecedented appreciation of the complexity, ambiguity, and risk involved in any environmental issue or crisis.

  12. Assessment of MRI Issues at 3 Tesla for a New Metallic Tissue Marker. (United States)

    Cronenweth, Charlotte M; Shellock, Frank G


    Purpose. To assess the MRI issues at 3 Tesla for a metallic tissue marker used to localize removal areas of tissue abnormalities. Materials and Methods. A newly designed, metallic tissue marker (Achieve Marker, CareFusion, Vernon Hills, IL) used to mark biopsy sites, particularly in breasts, was assessed for MRI issues which included standardized tests to determine magnetic field interactions (i.e., translational attraction and torque), MRI-related heating, and artifacts at 3 Tesla. Temperature changes were determined for the marker using a gelled-saline-filled phantom. MRI was performed at a relatively high specific absorption rate (whole body averaged SAR, 2.9-W/kg). MRI artifacts were evaluated using T1-weighted, spin echo and gradient echo pulse sequences. Results. The marker displayed minimal magnetic field interactions (2-degree deflection angle and no torque). MRI-related heating was only 0.1°C above background heating (i.e., the heating without the tissue marker present). Artifacts seen as localized signal loss were relatively small in relation to the size and shape of the marker. Conclusions. Based on the findings, the new metallic tissue marker is acceptable or "MR Conditional" (using current labeling terminology) for a patient undergoing an MRI procedure at 3 Tesla or less.

  13. A Needs Assessment of Health Issues Related to Maternal Mortality Rates in Afghanistan: A Pilot Study. (United States)

    Naim, Ali; Feldman, Robert; Sawyer, Robin


    Maternal death rates in Afghanistan were among the highest in the world during the reign of the Taliban. Although these figures have improved, current rates are still alarming. The aim of this pilot study was to develop a needs assessment of the major health issues related to the high maternal mortality rates in Afghanistan. In-depth interviews were conducted with managerial midwives, clinical midwives, and mothers. Results of the interviews indicate that the improvement in the maternal mortality rate may be attributed to the increase in the involvement of midwives in the birthing process. However, barriers to decreasing maternal mortality still exist. These include transportation, access to care, and sociocultural factors such as the influence of the husband and mother-in-law in preventing access to midwives. Therefore, any programs to decrease maternal mortality need to address infrastructure issues (making health care more accessible) and sociocultural factors (including husbands and mother-in-laws in maternal health education). However, it should be noted that these findings are based on a small pilot study to help develop a larger scale need assessment.

  14. Quantitative flood risk assessment in historic cities: sensitivity to hydraulic modeling and open socio-economic data. (United States)

    Arrighi, Chiara; Castelli, Fabio; Brugioni, Marcello; Franceschini, Serena; Mazzanti, Bernardo


    The assessment of flood risk in urban areas is considered nowadays a crucial issue to be addressed by technicians and public authorities and requires the estimation of hazard, vulnerability and exposure. Each step of the risk assessment brings its uncertainties to the final result, thus the analysis of the sensitivity to the different contributors is required. Since the damages are generally evaluated through stage-damage functions one of the most important contribution is the estimated value of the water depth. Water depth is the outcome of hydraulic models that can be implemented with different modeling approaches and levels of spatial detail, thus providing flood depth maps that may differ in the extension of the inundated area and in the flood depth value. It is generally argued that 2D models are the most suitable to describe flood behavior in the urban environment although most of applications are carried out in small and sparse urban areas. In the historic cities a 2D model provides reliable results if the grid size is small enough to describe the street/building pattern, implying long simulation runs. Another contribution is given by monetary values assigned to the damage categories that may come from different proxy variables and may oscillate according to the real estate quotations. The risk assessment here presented is made possible thanks to a methodology based on the open data, both socio-economic and territorial, that are available in the web. In this work the risk assessment procedure and the sensitivity analysis are applied to the main cities located along the Arno river, Pisa and Florence (Italy) that are usually considered of broad interest for the importance of urban and cultural heritage. The risk is estimated accounting for structures, household contents, commercial and tertiary sectors which are the most representative of the studied areas. The evaluation and mapping of micro-scale flood risk is carried out in a GIS environment using open data

  15. Assessing Veterinary and Animal Science Students' Moral Judgment Development on Animal Ethics Issues. (United States)

    Verrinder, Joy M; Phillips, Clive J C


    Little has been done to assess veterinarians' moral judgment in relation to animal ethics issues. Following development of the VetDIT, a new moral judgment measure for animal ethics issues, this study aimed to refine and further validate the VetDIT, and to identify effects of teaching interventions on moral judgment and changes in moral judgment over time. VetDIT-V1 was refined into VetDIT-V2, and V3 was developed as a post-intervention test to prevent repetition. To test these versions for comparability, veterinary and animal science students (n=271) were randomly assigned to complete different versions. The VetDIT discriminates between stages of moral judgment, condensed into three schemas: Personal Interest (PI), Maintaining Norms (MN), and Universal Principles (UP). There were no differences in the scores for MN and UP between the versions, and we equated PI scores to account for differences between versions. Veterinary science students (n=130) who completed a three-hour small-group workshop on moral development theory and ethical decision making increased their use of UP in moral reasoning, whereas students (n=271) who received similar information in a 50-minute lecture did not. A longitudinal comparison of matched first- and third-year students (n=39) revealed no moral judgment development toward greater use of UP. The VetDIT is therefore useful for assessing moral judgment of animal and human ethics issues in veterinary and other animal-related professions. Intensive small-group workshops using moral development knowledge and skills, rather than lectures, are conducive to developing veterinary students' moral judgment.

  16. Assessment of knowledge and practices of selected health and sanitation issues in slums of Ahmedabad

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mayur Trivedi


    Full Text Available Background: India has recently witnessed unprecedented economic growth. However, this rise in income has not resulted in the concurrent economic development in the country. The urban poor have been at the most disadvantage and have shown poor performance indicators in health outcomes. This paper is based on baseline assessment of knowledge and practices of selected health issue in selected slums of Ahmedabad. Methods: A descriptive cross-sectional research was conducted to analyze and explore the level of awareness of hygiene and sanitation issues of slum dwellers. The data was compiled using household survey among 600 slum dwellers in two slums. From each slum, 100 households with a woman who is either pregnant at the time of the survey or who has recently delivered and 200 neighboring households were interviewed. The non-probability snowball sampling technique was used. The data was collected with the help of structured questionnaire. Analysis: There was less awareness of precursors to poor health. While hand washing came out as a common practice, use of soap was not universal. Frequency and method of hand washing was also found to be sub-optimal. While there was some information about house fly and mosquitoes, misconceptions around illnesses spread by them were observed. Health awareness campaign remained the least observed source of information about health and hygiene related issues. Discussion: The key areas of improvement that have emerged from the survey are a awareness of proper hygiene including techniques of hand washing, b awareness of vector borne diseases, with focus on low-cost, self-initiated control of intra-home mosquito breeding sites, and c importance of sanitation and safe disposal of human waste. It is suggested that these issues needs to be focused and reiterated in the performances.

  17. Toward Transparent and Reproducible Science: Using Open Source "Big Data" Tools for Water Resources Assessment (United States)

    Buytaert, W.; Zulkafli, Z. D.; Vitolo, C.


    Transparency and reproducibility are fundamental properties of good science. In the current era of large and diverse datasets and long and complex workflows for data analysis and inference, ensuring such transparency and reproducibility is challenging. Hydrological science is a good case in point, because the discipline typically uses a large variety of datasets ranging from local observations to large-scale remotely sensed products. These data are often obtained from various different sources, and integrated using complex yet uncertain modelling tools. In this paper, we present and discuss methods of ensuring transparency and reproducibility in scientific workflows for hydrological data analysis for the purpose of water resources assessment, using relevant examples of emerging open source "big data" tools. First, we discuss standards for data storage, access, and processing that allow improving the modularity of a hydrological analysis workflow. In particular standards emerging from the Open Geospatial Consortium, such as the Sensor Observation Service, the Web Coverage Service, hold promise. However, some bottlenecks such as the availability of data models and the ability to work with spatio-temperal subsets of large datasets, need further development. Next, we focus on available methods to build transparent data processing workflows. Again, standards such as OGC's Web Processing Service are being developed to facilitate web-based analytics. Yet, in practice, the experimental nature of these standards and web services in general often requires a more pragmatic approach. The availability of web technologies in popular open source data analysis environments such as R and Python often makes them an attractive solution for workflow creation and sharing. Lastly, we elaborate on the potential of open source solutions hold in the context of participatory approaches to data collection and knowledge generation. Using examples from the tropical Andes and the Himalayas, we

  18. Slope orientation assessment for open-pit mines, using GIS-based algorithms (United States)

    Grenon, Martin; Laflamme, Amélie-Julie


    Standard stability analysis in geomechanical rock slope engineering for open-pit mines relies on a simplified representation of slope geometry, which does not take full advantage of available topographical data in the early design stages of a mining project; consequently, this may lead to nonoptimal slope design. The primary objective of this paper is to present a methodology that allows for the rigorous determination of interramp and bench face slope orientations on a digital elevation model (DEM) of a designed open pit. Common GIS slope algorithms were tested to assess slope orientations on the DEM of the Meadowbank mining project's Portage pit. Planar regression algorithms based on principal component analysis provided the best results at both the interramp and the bench face levels. The optimal sampling window for interramp was 21×21 cells, while a 9×9-cell window was best at the bench level. Subsequent slope stability analysis relying on those assessed slope orientations would provide a more realistic geometry for potential slope instabilities in the design pit. The presented methodology is flexible, and can be adapted depending on a given mine's block sizes and pit geometry.

  19. Epistemic uncertainties and natural hazard risk assessment – Part 1: A review of the issues

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. J. Beven


    Full Text Available Uncertainties in natural hazard risk assessment are generally dominated by the sources arising from lack of knowledge or understanding of the processes involved. There is a lack of knowledge about frequencies, process representations, parameters, present and future boundary conditions, consequences and impacts, and the meaning of observations in evaluating simulation models. These are the epistemic uncertainties that can be difficult to constrain, especially in terms of event or scenario probabilities, even as elicited probabilities rationalized on the basis of expert judgements. This paper reviews the issues raised by trying to quantify the effects of epistemic uncertainties. Such scientific uncertainties might have significant influence on decisions that are made for risk management, so it is important to communicate the meaning of an uncertainty estimate and to provide an audit trail of the assumptions on which it is based. Some suggestions for good practice in doing so are made.

  20. The Engineering and Science Issues Test (ESIT): a discipline-specific approach to assessing moral judgment. (United States)

    Borenstein, Jason; Drake, Matthew J; Kirkman, Robert; Swann, Julie L


    To assess ethics pedagogy in science and engineering, we developed a new tool called the Engineering and Science Issues Test (ESIT). ESIT measures moral judgment in a manner similar to the Defining Issues Test, second edition, but is built around technical dilemmas in science and engineering. We used a quasi-experimental approach with pre- and post-tests, and we compared the results to those of a control group with no overt ethics instruction. Our findings are that several (but not all) stand-alone classes showed a significant improvement compared to the control group when the metric includes multiple stages of moral development. We also found that the written test had a higher response rate and sensitivity to pedagogy than the electronic version. We do not find significant differences on pre-test scores with respect to age, education level, gender or political leanings, but we do on whether subjects were native English speakers. We did not find significant differences on pre-test scores based on whether subjects had previous ethics instruction; this could suggest a lack of a long-term effect from the instruction.

  1. Computer Security Issues in Online Banking: An Assessment from the Context of Usable Security (United States)

    Mahmadi, FN; Zaaba, ZF; Osman, A.


    Today's online banking is a convenient mode of finance management. Despite the ease of doing online banking, there are people that still sceptical in utilizing it due to perception and its security. This paper highlights the subject of online banking security in Malaysia, especially from the perspective of the end-users. The study is done by assessing human computer interaction, usability and security. An online survey utilising 137 participants was previously conducted to gain preliminary insights on security issues of online banking in Malaysia. Following from those results, 37 participants were interviewed to gauge deeper understanding about end-users perception on online banking within the context of usable security. The results suggested that most of the end-users are continuingly experiencing significant difficulties especially in relation to the technical terminologies, security features and other technical issues. Although the security features are provided to provide a shield or protection, users are still incapable to cope with the technical aspects of such implementation.

  2. A Photogrammetric Approach for Assessing Positional Accuracy of OpenStreetMap© Roads

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter Doucette


    Full Text Available As open source volunteered geographic information continues to gain popularity, the user community and data contributions are expected to grow, e.g., CloudMade, Apple, and Ushahidi now provide OpenStreetMap© (OSM as a base layer for some of their mapping applications. This, coupled with the lack of cartographic standards and the expectation to one day be able to use this vector data for more geopositionally sensitive applications, like GPS navigation, leaves potential users and researchers to question the accuracy of the database. This research takes a photogrammetric approach to determining the positional accuracy of OSM road features using stereo imagery and a vector adjustment model. The method applies rigorous analytical measurement principles to compute accurate real world geolocations of OSM road vectors. The proposed approach was tested on several urban gridded city streets from the OSM database with the results showing that the post adjusted shape points improved positionally by 86%. Furthermore, the vector adjustment was able to recover 95% of the actual positional displacement present in the database. To demonstrate a practical application, a head-to-head positional accuracy assessment between OSM, the USGS National Map (TNM, and United States Census Bureau’s Topologically Integrated Geographic Encoding Referencing (TIGER 2007 roads was conducted.

  3. European community legislation concerning schools of specialisation in orthodontics: the inexplicable inertia of Italy--contradictions and open issues. (United States)

    Maino, B Giuliano; Cabrini, Cesare


    Orthodontics was the first discipline to be acknowledged as such within the field of dentistry, initially in the USA and subsequently in Europe. The structural changes that led to the birth of the European Union (EU) laid the foundations for the free circulation of professions and services. Nevertheless a deep discrepancy in the quality of training of practitioners from different countries became apparent. It was necessary to address this issue and regulate the training process in order to guarantee a degree of uniformity. Up to this time only the duration of the School of Specialisation in Orthodontics has been set at a minimum of three years. While moving towards an increasing degree of integration of the various EU countries, it becomes paramount to be able to establish a School of Specialisation in Orthodontics with high academic standards based on the Erasmus Programme and above all to be able to award a specialisation degree which is acknowledged first of all in the country where it is issued and also on a wider European level. Freedom of circulation of intellectual activities requires the formal acknowledgement of a qualification, namely the Specialisation in Orthodontics. Also to that end, EFOSA (European Federation of Specialists in Orthodontics) was founded. Furthermore the European Community has, in the meantime, ruled that medical trainees should be remunerated for their work. Dentistry and its specialisations should not follow the model of Medicine given that the two are completely distinct, but many believe that the duration of the School of Specialisation in Orthodontics has to be set as the same as the medical specialisations.

  4. Three-dimensional assessment of unilateral subcondylar fracture using computed tomography after open reduction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sathya Kumar Devireddy


    Full Text Available Objective: The aim was to assess the accuracy of three-dimensional anatomical reductions achieved by open method of treatment in cases of displaced unilateral mandibular subcondylar fractures using preoperative (pre op and postoperative (post op computed tomography (CT scans. Materials and Methods: In this prospective study, 10 patients with unilateral sub condylar fractures confirmed by an orthopantomogram were included. A pre op and post op CT after 1 week of surgical procedure was taken in axial, coronal and sagittal plane along with three-dimensional reconstruction. Standard anatomical parameters, which undergo changes due to fractures of the mandibular condyle were measured in pre and post op CT scans in three planes and statistically analysed for the accuracy of the reduction comparing the following variables: (a Pre op fractured and nonfractured side (b post op fractured and nonfractured side (c pre op fractured and post op fractured side. P < 0.05 was considered as significant. Results: Three-dimensional anatomical reduction was possible in 9 out of 10 cases (90%. The statistical analysis of each parameter in three variables revealed (P < 0.05 that there was a gross change in the dimensions of the parameters obtained in pre op fractured and nonfractured side. When these parameters were assessed in post op CT for the three variables there was no statistical difference between the post op fractured side and non fractured side. The same parameters were analysed for the three variables in pre op fractured and post op fractured side and found significant statistical difference suggesting a considerable change in the dimensions of the fractured side post operatively. Conclusion: The statistical and clinical results in our study emphasised that it is possible to fix the condyle in three-dimensional anatomical positions with open method of treatment and avoid post op degenerative joint changes. CT is the ideal imaging tool and should be used on

  5. Assessing Campus Climates for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Students: Methodological and Political Issues (United States)

    Brown, Robert D.; Gortmaker, Valerie J.


    Methodological and political issues arise during the designing, conducting, and reporting of campus-climate studies for LGBT students. These issues interact; making a decision about a methodological issue (e.g., sample size) has an impact on a political issue (e.g., how well the findings will be received). Ten key questions that must be addressed…

  6. Assessment of positive functioning in clinical psychology: theoretical and practical issues. (United States)

    Joseph, Stephen; Wood, Alex


    Positive psychology has led to an increasing emphasis on the promotion of positive functioning in clinical psychology research and practice, raising issues of how to assess the positive in clinical setting. Three key considerations are presented. First, existing clinical measures may already be assessing positive functioning, if positive and negative functioning exist on a single continuum (such as on bipolar dimensions from happiness to depression, and from anxiety to relaxation). Second, specific measures of positive functioning (e.g., eudemonic well-being) could be used in conjunction with existing clinical scales. Third, completely different measures would be needed depending on whether well-being is defined as emotional or medical functioning, or as humanistically orientated growth (e.g., authenticity). It is important that clinical psychologists introduce positive functioning into their research and practice in order to widen their armoury of therapeutic interventions, but in doing so researchers and practitioners need also to be aware that they are shifting the agenda of clinical psychology. As such, progress in clinical psychology moving toward the adoption of positive functioning requires reflection on epistemological foundations.

  7. Neural basis of decision-making and assessment: Issues on testability and philosophical relevance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mograbi Gabriel José


    Full Text Available Decision-making is an intricate subject in neuroscience. It is often argued that laboratorial research is not capable of dealing with the necessary complexity to study the issue. Whereas philosophers in general neglect the physiological features that constitute the main aspects of thought and behaviour, I advocate that cutting-edge neuroscientific experiments can offer us a framework to explain human behaviour in its relationship with will, self-control, inhibition, emotion and reasoning. It is my contention that self-control mechanisms can modulate more basic stimuli. Assuming the aforementioned standpoints, I show the physiological mechanisms underlying social assessment and decision-making. I also establish a difference between veridical and adaptive decision-making, useful to create experimental designs that can better mimic the complexity of our day-by-day decisions in more ecologically relevant laboratorial research. Moreover, I analyse some experiments in order to develop an epistemological reflection about the necessary neural mechanisms to social assessment and decision-making.

  8. Neural basis of decision-making and assessment: Issues on testability and philosophical relevance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabriel José Corrêa Mograbi


    Full Text Available Decision-making is an intricate subject in neuroscience. It is often argued that laboratorial research is not capable of dealing with the necessary complexity to study the issue. Whereas philosophers in general neglect the physiological features that constitute the main aspects of thought and behaviour, I advocate that cutting-edge neuroscientific experiments can offer us a framework to explain human behaviour in its relationship with will, self-control, inhibition, emotion and reasoning. It is my contention that self-control mechanisms can modulate more basic stimuli. Assuming the aforementioned standpoints, I show the physiological mechanisms underlying social assessment and decision-making. I also establish a difference between veridical and adaptive decision-making, useful to create experimental designs that can better mimic the complexity of our day-by-day decisions in more ecologically relevant laboratorial research. Moreover, I analyse some experiments in order to develop an epistemological reflection about the necessary neural mechanisms to social assessment and decision-making.

  9. Communicating Quantitative Literacy: An Examination of Open-Ended Assessment Items in TIMSS, NALS, IALS, and PISA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karl W. Kosko


    Full Text Available Quantitative Literacy (QL has been described as the skill set an individual uses when interacting with the world in a quantitative manner. A necessary component of this interaction is communication. To this end, assessments of QL have included open-ended items as a means of including communicative aspects of QL. The present study sought to examine whether such open-ended items typically measured aspects of quantitative communication, as compared to mathematical communication, or mathematical skills. We focused on public-released items and rubrics from four of the most widely referenced assessments: the Third International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS-95: the National Adult Literacy Survey (NALS; now the National Assessment of Adult Literacy, NAAL in 1985 and 1992, the International Adult Literacy Skills (IALS beginning in 1994; and the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA beginning in 2000. We found that open-ended item rubrics in these QL assessments showed a strong tendency to assess answer-only responses. Therefore, while some open-ended items may have required certain levels of quantitative reasoning to find a solution, it is the solution rather than the reasoning that was often assessed.

  10. Cosmic-ray world with gamma-ray astronomy: a wealth on information, an even more open issue

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cardillo Martina


    Full Text Available Since from their discovery in 1912, Cosmic-Rays (CRs are one of the most debated issues of the high energy astrophysics. Their origin is still a fundamental problem and is the subject of very intense research. Until now, the best candidate sources of Galactic CR component are Supernova Remnants (SNRs but final proof for the origin of CRs up to the knee can only be obtained through two fundamental signatures, the detection of a clear gamma-ray signature of π0 decay in Galactic sources and the identification of sources emitting a photon spectrum up to PeV energies. Both indications are quite difficult to obtain. The two gamma-ray satellites, AGILE and Fermi, together with ground telescopes operating in the TeV energy range (HESS, VERITAS and MAGIC, collected a great amount of data from SNRs. In spite of the recent discovery of the neutral pion spectral signature in the SNR W44 spectrum by AGILE (and confirmed by Fermi-LAT, all gamma-ray data collected at GeV and TeV energies for several young and middle-aged SNRs provide interesting challenges to current theoretical models. The emerging view from gamma-ray and particle detection is intriguing and lead to revisit the CR-SNR paradigm, considering also the contribution of other kind of sources.

  11. Constructing a Multiple-Choice Assessment For Upper-Division Quantum Physics From An Open-Ended Tool

    CERN Document Server

    Sadaghiani, Homeyra; Pollock, Steven; Rehn, Daniel


    As part of an ongoing investigation of student learning in upper-division quantum mechanics, we needed a high-quality conceptual assessment instrument for comparing outcomes of different curricular approaches. The 14 item open-ended Quantum Mechanics Assessment Tool (QMAT) was previously developed for this purpose. However, open-ended tests require complex scoring rubrics, are difficult to score consistently, and demand substantial investment of faculty time to grade. Here, we present the process of converting open-ended questions to multiple-choice (MC) format. We highlight the construction of effective distractors and the use of student interviews to revise and validate questions and distractors. We examine other elements of the process, including results of a preliminary implementation of the MC assessment given at Cal Poly Pomona and CU Boulder.

  12. Assessment of open source software for CBCT in detecting additional mental foramina

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oséas Santos Junior


    Full Text Available The purpose of this study was to evaluate which post-processing imaging protocol would be better to analyze the additional mental foramen (AMF in preoperative planning with cone-beam computed tomography (CBCT exams, and to test reproducibility of measurements, using open source software (OsiriX. The software was used to detect the cases of AMF from among 58 exams for dental implant planning in edentulous mandible areas-three cases were found. The case images were submitted to qualitative analysis using 2D orthogonal MPR, 3D-MPR and 3D volume rendering protocols by two oral and maxillofacial radiologists. Quantitative analysis used the 3D-MPR protocol; the closed polygon tool measured the mental foramen (MF and the AMF areas; the length tool measured the distance between foramina. The measurements were performed independently by the examiners, at two different times. Intra- and interexaminer agreement was assessed using the intraclass correlation coefficient. The panoramic view did not show the MF and the AMF clearly. The AMF could be detected in the parasagittal view. 2D Orthogonal MPR was effective to observe the AMF in some cases. The 3D-MPR and 3D view protocols were the most effective to locate and analyze the AMF. In conclusion, a 3D view improves visualization when anatomical points are not clearly visible. 3D-MPR was considered a more effective post-processing imaging protocol to observe foramina relationships. The high reproducibility of measurements for anatomical MF variations was established using specific tools featured in open source software for CBCT. OsiriX is realistic and recommended for preoperative planning.

  13. Analysis of Critical Issues in Biosphere Assessment Modelling and Site Investigation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Egan, M.J.; Thorne, M.C.; Little, R.H.; Pasco, R.F. [Quintessa Limited, Henley-on-Thames (United Kingdom)


    The aim of this document is to present a critical review of issues concerned with the treatment of the biosphere and geosphere-biosphere interface in long-term performance assessment studies for nuclear waste disposal in Sweden. The review covers three main areas of investigation: a review of SKB's plans for undertaking site investigations at candidate locations for the development of a deep geological repository for spent fuel; identification of critical uncertainties associated with SKB's treatment of the geosphere-biosphere interface in recent performance assessments; and a preliminary modelling investigation of the significance of features, events and processes in the near-surface environment in terms of their effect on the accumulation and redistribution of radionuclides at the geosphere-biosphere interface. Overall, SKB's proposals for site investigations are considered to be comprehensive and, if they can be carried out to the specification presented, will constitute a benchmark that other waste management organisations will have to work hard to emulate. The main concern is that expertise for undertaking the investigations and reporting the results could be stretched very thin. The authors have also identified weaknesses in the documentation concerning the collection of evidence for environmental change and on developing scenarios for future environmental change. A fundamental assumption adopted in the renewed assessment of the SFR 1 repository, which is not discussed or justified in any of the documentation that has been reviewed, is that radionuclides enter the water column of the coastal and lake models directly, without passing first through the bed sediments. The modelling study reported herein suggests that SKB's models are robust to range of alternative conceptual descriptions relating to the geosphere-biosphere interface. There are however situations, in which contaminated groundwater is released via sediment rather than directly

  14. Ocular health among radiologists in the age of PACS: is it time for our profession to open its eyes to this issue in light of existing European legislation? (United States)

    Halpenny, D; O'Driscoll, D; Torreggiani, W C


    The regular use of visual display units (VDUs) at work has been shown to cause the development of a constellation of symptoms ranging from dry eyes to temporary myopia. European workers who use VDUs are now protected under detailed legislation enacted by the European Union (Directive 90/270/EEC). The use of picture archiving and communications systems, which are almost ubiquitous in European countries, means that, as a profession, radiologists fall under the remit of this legislation. This paper aims to assess the impact that full implementation of this law would have on a radiologist's practice and to more broadly examine the issue of eye care as an occupational health issue in radiology. The authors conclude that eye care in the setting of regular VDU use among radiologists is an important quality control and occupational health issue. There is a clear legal basis requiring employers to provide regular eye examinations and reporting breaks. In the absence of leadership from employers on this issue individual radiologists have a responsibility to ensure that their work practices reflect the legal situation and minimise the effect of eye strain on their performance.

  15. Ocular health among radiologists in the age of PACS: is it time for our profession to open its eyes to this issue in light of existing European legislation?

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Halpenny, D


    The regular use of visual display units (VDUs) at work has been shown to cause the development of a constellation of symptoms ranging from dry eyes to temporary myopia. European workers who use VDUs are now protected under detailed legislation enacted by the European Union (Directive 90\\/270\\/EEC). The use of picture archiving and communications systems, which are almost ubiquitous in European countries, means that, as a profession, radiologists fall under the remit of this legislation. This paper aims to assess the impact that full implementation of this law would have on a radiologist\\'s practice and to more broadly examine the issue of eye care as an occupational health issue in radiology. The authors conclude that eye care in the setting of regular VDU use among radiologists is an important quality control and occupational health issue. There is a clear legal basis requiring employers to provide regular eye examinations and reporting breaks. In the absence of leadership from employers on this issue individual radiologists have a responsibility to ensure that their work practices reflect the legal situation and minimise the effect of eye strain on their performance.

  16. Epistemic uncertainty in the ranking and categorization of probabilistic safety assessment model elements: issues and findings. (United States)

    Borgonovo, Emanuele


    In this work, we study the effect of epistemic uncertainty in the ranking and categorization of elements of probabilistic safety assessment (PSA) models. We show that, while in a deterministic setting a PSA element belongs to a given category univocally, in the presence of epistemic uncertainty, a PSA element belongs to a given category only with a certain probability. We propose an approach to estimate these probabilities, showing that their knowledge allows to appreciate "the sensitivity of component categorizations to uncertainties in the parameter values" (U.S. NRC Regulatory Guide 1.174). We investigate the meaning and utilization of an assignment method based on the expected value of importance measures. We discuss the problem of evaluating changes in quality assurance, maintenance activities prioritization, etc. in the presence of epistemic uncertainty. We show that the inclusion of epistemic uncertainly in the evaluation makes it necessary to evaluate changes through their effect on PSA model parameters. We propose a categorization of parameters based on the Fussell-Vesely and differential importance (DIM) measures. In addition, issues in the calculation of the expected value of the joint importance measure are present when evaluating changes affecting groups of components. We illustrate that the problem can be solved using DIM. A numerical application to a case study concludes the work.

  17. The difficult issue of age assessment on pedo-pornographic material. (United States)

    Cattaneo, Cristina; Ritz-Timme, Stefanie; Gabriel, Peter; Gibelli, Daniele; Giudici, Elena; Poppa, Pasquale; Nohrden, Doerte; Assmann, Sabine; Schmitt, Roland; Grandi, Marco


    The issue of juvenile pornography has seen an increase in the past few years of the number of expert opinions requested to forensic pathologists, paediatricians and other various experts within the forensic and medical fields concerning the age of represented individuals. Regardless of the entity of the problem, no actual method exists which can allow us to give an objective and scientific answer, particularly in the postpubertal stage. Using parameters related to sexual maturation can be very dangerous. Nonetheless some experts still insist with similar types of "expertises". This study aims at verifying the ability of different experts in assessing age of postpubertal individuals represented in pornographic material. Results underline the difficulties and major uncertainties of age evaluation by visual observation of photographic material particularly when the subjects have reached the sexual maturation stage - and therefore in verifying whether the individual is above or below 18 years of age (an important age limit for most European countries as far as this type of crime is concerned). Furthermore the study stresses the need both to search for an alternate approach and to apply extreme caution in judicial evaluation.

  18. Open Standards, Open Source, and Open Innovation: Harnessing the Benefits of Openness (United States)

    Committee for Economic Development, 2006


    Digitization of information and the Internet have profoundly expanded the capacity for openness. This report details the benefits of openness in three areas--open standards, open-source software, and open innovation--and examines the major issues in the debate over whether openness should be encouraged or not. The report explains each of these…

  19. Final Report: Risk assessment for produced water discharges to Louisiana open bays

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Meinhold, A.F.; DePhillips, M.P.; Holtzman, S.


    Potential human health and environmental impacts from discharges of produced water to the Gulf of Mexico are of concern to regulators at the State and Federal levels, the public, environmental interest groups and industry. Current and proposed regulations require a zero discharge limit for coastal facilities, based primarily on studies in low energy, poorly flushed environments. However, produced water discharges in coastal Louisiana include a number of open bay sites, where potential human health and environmental impacts are likely to be smaller than those demonstrated for low energy canal environments, but greater than the minimal impacts associated with offshore discharges. Additional data and assessments are needed to support risk managers at the State and Federal levels in the development of regulations that protect human health and the environment without unnecessary cost to the economic welfare of the region and the nation. This project supports the Natural Gas and Oil Initiative objectives to: (1) improve coordination on environmental research; (2) streamline State and Federal regulation; (3) enhance State, and Federal regulatory decision making capability; (4) enhance dialogue through industry/government/public partnerships; and (5) work with States and Native American Tribes.

  20. Assessment of provitamin A determination by open column chromatography/visible absorption spectrophotometry. (United States)

    Rodriguez-Amaya, D B; Kimura, M; Godoy, H T; Arima, H K


    Determination of provitamin A content by open column chromatography/visible absorption spectrophotometry is assessed using food samples of varying carotenoid composition. A general method consisting of extraction with acetone, transfer to petroleum ether, saponification (optional), concentration, separation on activated MgO:Hyflo Supercel column developed with 1 to 15% acetone in petroleum ether, and quantitation of individual provitamins spectrophotometrically demonstrates repeatability comparable with that of high-performance liquid chromatographic (HPLC) methods. Overnight saponification (10% methanolic KOH, ambient temperature) does not degrade the provitamins and is unnecessary for kale, tomato, and squash; however, it is required for good separation of papaya carotenoids due to the presence of carotenol esters. The current Association of Official Analytical Chemists (AOAC) method is found to be inappropriate because (1) the volume of extracting solvent is not adjusted to the type of sample; (2) the less active alpha- and gamma-carotene, alpha- and beta-cryptoxanthin, and 5,6-monoepoxy-beta-cryptoxanthin (50% active) are quantified as beta-carotene (100% active); (3) inactive carotenoids such as xi-carotene and zeinoxanthin are also quantified as beta-carotene.

  1. Quality Assessment of Studies Published in Open Access and Subscription Journals: Results of a Systematic Evaluation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roberta Pastorino

    Full Text Available Along with the proliferation of Open Access (OA publishing, the interest for comparing the scientific quality of studies published in OA journals versus subscription journals has also increased. With our study we aimed to compare the methodological quality and the quality of reporting of primary epidemiological studies and systematic reviews and meta-analyses published in OA and non-OA journals.In order to identify the studies to appraise, we listed all OA and non-OA journals which published in 2013 at least one primary epidemiologic study (case-control or cohort study design, and at least one systematic review or meta-analysis in the field of oncology. For the appraisal, we picked up the first studies published in 2013 with case-control or cohort study design from OA journals (Group A; n = 12, and in the same time period from non-OA journals (Group B; n = 26; the first systematic reviews and meta-analyses published in 2013 from OA journals (Group C; n = 15, and in the same time period from non-OA journals (Group D; n = 32. We evaluated the methodological quality of studies by assessing the compliance of case-control and cohort studies to Newcastle and Ottawa Scale (NOS scale, and the compliance of systematic reviews and meta-analyses to Assessment of Multiple Systematic Reviews (AMSTAR scale. The quality of reporting was assessed considering the adherence of case-control and cohort studies to STrengthening the Reporting of OBservational studies in Epidemiology (STROBE checklist, and the adherence of systematic reviews and meta-analyses to Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic reviews and Meta-Analysis (PRISMA checklist.Among case-control and cohort studies published in OA and non-OA journals, we did not observe significant differences in the median value of NOS score (Group A: 7 (IQR 7-8 versus Group B: 8 (7-9; p = 0.5 and in the adherence to STROBE checklist (Group A, 75% versus Group B, 80%; p = 0.1. The results did not change after

  2. Factors for Consideration in an Open-Flame Test for Assessing Fire Blocking Performance of Barrier Fabrics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shonali Nazaré


    Full Text Available The main objective of the work reported here is to assess factors that could affect the outcome of a proposed open flame test for barrier fabrics (BF-open flame test. The BF-open flame test characterizes barrier effectiveness by monitoring the ignition of a flexible polyurethane foam (FPUF layer placed in contact with the upper side of the barrier fabric, exposed to a burner flame from below. Particular attention is given to the factors that influence the ignitibility of the FPUF, including thermal resistance, permeability, and structural integrity of the barrier fabrics (BFs. A number of barrier fabrics, displaying a wide range of the properties, are tested with the BF-open flame test. Visual observations of the FPUF burning behavior and BF char patterns, in addition to heat flux measurements on the unexposed side of the barrier fabrics, are used to assess the protective performance of the BF specimen under the open flame test conditions. The temperature and heat transfer measurements on the unexposed side of the BF and subsequent ranking of BFs for their thermal protective performance suggest that the BF-open flame test does not differentiate barrier fabrics based on their heat transfer properties. A similar conclusion is reached with regard to BF permeability characterized at room temperature. However, the outcome of this BF-open flame test is found to be heavily influenced by the structural integrity of thermally degraded BF. The BF-open flame test, in its current form, only ignited FPUF when structural failure of the barrier was observed.

  3. Spatiotemporal assessment of water chemistry in intermittently open/closed coastal lakes of Southern Baltic (United States)

    Astel, Aleksander M.; Bigus, Katarzyna; Obolewski, Krystian; Glińska-Lewczuk, Katarzyna


    Ionic profile, pH, electrolytic conductivity, chemical oxygen demand and concentration of selected heavy metals (Ni, Cu, Zn, Fe and Mn) were determined in water of 11 intermittently closed and open lakes and lagoons (ICOLLs) located in Polish coastline. Multidimensional data set was explored by the use of the self-organizing map (SOM) technique to avoid supervised and predictable division for fully isolated, partially and fully connected lakes. Water quality assessment based on single parameter's mean value allowed classification of majority of lakes to first or second class of purity according to regulation presenting classification approach applicable to uniform parts of surface waters. The SOM-based grouping revealed seven clusters comprising water samples of similar physico-chemical profile. Fully connected lakes were characterized by the highest concentration of components characteristic for sea salts (NaCl, MgCl2, MgSO4, CaSO4, K2SO4 and MgBr2), however spring samples from Łebsko were shifted to another cluster suggesting that intensive surface run-off and fresh-water inflow through Łupawa river decreases an impact of sea water intrusions. Forecasted characteristic of water collected in Resko Przymorskie lake was disturbed by high contamination by nitrites indicating accidental and local contamination due to usage of sodium nitrite for the curing of meat. Some unexpected sources of contamination was discovered in intermittently open and closed lakes. Presumably Zn contamination is due to use of wood preservatives to protect small wooden playgrounds or camping places spread around one of the lake, while increased concentration of Ni could be connected with grass and vegetation burning. Waters of Jamno lake are under the strongest anthropogenic impact due to inefficient removal of phosphates by waste water treatment plant and contamination by Fe and Mn caused by backwashing of absorption filters. Generally, the quality of ICOLLs' water was diversified, while

  4. Support interoperability and reusability of emerging forms of assessment: Some issues on integrating IMS LD with IMS QTI

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Miao, Yongwu; Boon, Jo; Van der Klink, Marcel; Sloep, Peter; Koper, Rob


    Miao, Y., Boon, J., Van der Klink, M., Sloep, P. B., & Koper, R. (2011). Support interoperability and reusability of emerging forms of assessment: Some issues on integrating IMS LD with IMS QTI. In F. Lazarinis, S. Green, & E. Pearson (Eds.), E-Learning Standards and Interoperability: Frameworks an

  5. Soil Monitor: an open source web application for real-time soil sealing monitoring and assessment (United States)

    Langella, Giuliano; Basile, Angelo; Giannecchini, Simone; Iamarino, Michela; Munafò, Michele; Terribile, Fabio


    Soil sealing is one of the most important causes of land degradation and desertification. In Europe, soil covered by impermeable materials has increased by about 80% from the Second World War till nowadays, while population has only grown by one third. There is an increasing concern at the high political levels about the need to attenuate imperviousness itself and its effects on soil functions. European Commission promulgated a roadmap (COM(2011) 571) by which the net land take would be zero by 2050. Furthermore, European Commission also published a report in 2011 providing best practices and guidelines for limiting soil sealing and imperviousness. In this scenario, we developed an open source and an open source based Soil Sealing Geospatial Cyber Infrastructure (SS-GCI) named as "Soil Monitor". This tool merges a webGIS with parallel geospatial computation in a fast and dynamic fashion in order to provide real-time assessments of soil sealing at high spatial resolution (20 meters and below) over the whole Italy. Common open source webGIS packages are used to implement both the data management and visualization infrastructures, such as GeoServer and MapStore. The high-speed geospatial computation is ensured by a GPU parallelism using the CUDA (Computing Unified Device Architecture) framework by NVIDIA®. This kind of parallelism required the writing - from scratch - all codes needed to fulfil the geospatial computation built behind the soil sealing toolbox. The combination of GPU computing with webGIS infrastructures is relatively novel and required particular attention at the Java-CUDA programming interface. As a result, Soil Monitor is smart because it can perform very high time-consuming calculations (querying for instance an Italian administrative region as area of interest) in less than one minute. The web application is embedded in a web browser and nothing must be installed before using it. Potentially everybody can use it, but the main targets are the

  6. A Framework for Teachers' Assessment of Socio-Scientific Argumentation: An Example Using the GMO Issue (United States)

    Christenson, Nina; Chang Rundgren, Shu-Nu


    Socio-scientific issues (SSI) have proven to be suitable contexts for students to actively reflect on and argue about complex social issues related to science. Research has indicated that explicitly teaching SSI argumentation is a good way to help students develop their argumentation skills and make them aware of the complexity of SSI. However,…

  7. Legal Issues in the Assessment and Treatment of Individuals with Dual Diagnosis. (United States)

    Bersoff, Donald N.; And Others


    Discusses difficult legal, ethical, and professional issues confronting psychologists who work with people with dual diagnoses. Outlines applicable constitutional principles in context of discussing right to institutional services and to refuse treatment, describes statutes that go beyond constitutional protections, and highlights issues that…

  8. DV169 Comparative assessment of consumption patterns and environmental issues in developing countries

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Luijkx, I.


    In this MSc research project the consumption patterns and environmental issues in the developing country Ecuador were studied. Within the ‘Center for Energy and Environmental Studies’ this is a first step in the combined research field of environmental issues and consumption patterns in developing c

  9. Open-Source web-based geographical information system for health exposure assessment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Evans, Barry; Sabel, Clive E


    This paper presents the design and development of an open source web-based Geographical Information System allowing users to visualise, customise and interact with spatial data within their web browser. The developed application shows that by using solely Open Source software it was possible...

  10. Biohumoral and endocrine parameters in assessment of surgical trauma in open and laparoscopic cholecystectomy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Radunović Miodrag


    Full Text Available Background/Aim. Every surgical procedure causes metabolic, endocrine, and hemodynamic stress in the organism. The aim of this work was to assess the extent of trauma following each of the two types of cholecystectomy (traditional/open and laparoscopic by measuring palette of biochemical parameters. Methods. This prospective, single- center study included 120 patients subjected to elective cholecystectomy during the period of one year. Sixty patients were treated laparoscopically and 60 traditionally. Biohumoral and endocrine parameters were determined from 24-hour urine and blood. We measured adrenaline, noradrenaline, metabolites of corticosteroid hormones (17-hydroxyl and 17-keto steroids, C-reactive protein (CRP, albumin, glycemia, creatine-phosphokinase (CPK, lactate-dehydrogenase (LDH, red blood cells sedimentation and serum concentration of potassium. Results. We observed significantly lower levels of adrenaline (p < 0.01, noradrenaline (p < 0.05, dopamine (p < 0.01, 17-hydroxyl (p < 0.01 and 17-keto steroids (p < 0.01, glycemia (p < 0.01, CPK (p < 0.01, LDH (p < 0.01 and red blood cells sedimentation (p < 0.01 following laparoscopic cholecystectomy compared to traditional one. Significant increase in CRP levels was recorded postoperatively in both groups (p < 0.05, as well as significant decrease in serum albumin values (p < 0.05. Duration of the hospitalization following laparoscopic cholecystectomy was significantly shorter (p < 0.01. Conclusion. The intensity of organism response is proportional to the intensity of surgical trauma. Metabolic, tissue and neuroendocrine response of organism to trauma has lower intensity after laparoscopic cholecystectomy.

  11. Assessing soil erosion risk using RUSLE through a GIS open source desktop and web application. (United States)

    Duarte, L; Teodoro, A C; Gonçalves, J A; Soares, D; Cunha, M


    Soil erosion is a serious environmental problem. An estimation of the expected soil loss by water-caused erosion can be calculated considering the Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation (RUSLE). Geographical Information Systems (GIS) provide different tools to create categorical maps of soil erosion risk which help to study the risk assessment of soil loss. The objective of this study was to develop a GIS open source application (in QGIS), using the RUSLE methodology for estimating erosion rate at the watershed scale (desktop application) and provide the same application via web access (web application). The applications developed allow one to generate all the maps necessary to evaluate the soil erosion risk. Several libraries and algorithms from SEXTANTE were used to develop these applications. These applications were tested in Montalegre municipality (Portugal). The maps involved in RUSLE method-soil erosivity factor, soil erodibility factor, topographic factor, cover management factor, and support practices-were created. The estimated mean value of the soil loss obtained was 220 ton km(-2) year(-1) ranged from 0.27 to 1283 ton km(-2) year(-1). The results indicated that most of the study area (80 %) is characterized by very low soil erosion level (erosion was higher than 962 ton km(-2) year(-1). It was also concluded that areas with high slope values and bare soil are related with high level of erosion and the higher the P and C values, the higher the soil erosion percentage. The RUSLE web and the desktop application are freely available.

  12. Isotope biogeochemical assessment of natural biodegradation processes in open cast pit mining landscapes (United States)

    Jeschke, Christina; Knöller, Kay; Koschorreck, Matthias; Ussath, Maria; Hoth, Nils


    In Germany, a major share of the energy production is based on the burning of lignite from open cast pit mines. The remediation and re-cultivation of the former mining areas in the Lusatian and Central German lignite mining district is an enormous technical and economical challenge. After mine closures, the surrounding landscapes are threatened by acid mine drainage (AMD), i.e. the acidification and mineralization of rising groundwater with metals and inorganic contaminants. The high content of sulfur (sulfuric acid, sulfate), nitrogen (ammonium) and iron compounds (iron-hydroxides) deteriorates the groundwater quality and decelerates sustainable development of tourism in (former) mining landscapes. Natural biodegradation or attenuation (NA) processes of inorganic contaminants are considered to be a technically low impact and an economically beneficial solution. The investigations of the stable isotope compositions of compounds involved in NA processes helps clarify the dynamics of natural degradation and provides specific informations on retention processes of sulfate and nitrogen-compounds in mine dump water, mine dump sediment, and residual pit lakes. In an active mine dump we investigated zones where the process of bacterial sulfate reduction, as one very important NA process, takes place and how NA can be enhanced by injecting reactive substrates. Stable isotopes signatures of sulfur and nitrogen components were examined and evaluated in concert with hydrogeochemical data. In addition, we delineated the sources of ammonium pollution in mine dump sediments and investigated nitrification by 15N-labeling techniques to calculate the limit of the conversion of harmful ammonium to nitrate in residual mining lakes. Ultimately, we provided an isotope biogeochemical assessment of natural attenuation of sulfate and ammonium at mine dump sites and mining lakes. Also, we estimated the risk potential for water in different compartments of the hydrological system. In

  13. Assessment of Materials Issues for Light-Water Small Modular Reactors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sandusky, David; Lunceford, Wayne; Bruemmer, Stephen M.; Catalan, Michael A.


    The primary objective of this report is to evaluate materials degradation issue unique to the operational environments of LWSMR. Concerns for specific primary system components and materials are identified based on the review of design information shared by mPower and NuScale. Direct comparisons are made to materials issues recognized for advanced large PWRs and research activities are recommended as needed. The issues identified are intended to improve the capability of industry to evaluate the significance of any degradation that might occur during long-term LWSMR operation and by extension affect the importance of future supporting R&D.

  14. Risk assessment of botanicals and botanical preparations intended for use in food and food supplements: emerging issues. (United States)

    Rietjens, Ivonne M C M; Slob, Wout; Galli, Corrado; Silano, Vittorio


    At present there is a growing interest for use of botanicals and botanical ingredients in medicines, for teas or in foods and in food supplements. In addition, a number of plant-derived food items form an integral part of regular human diets. Currently, there is an increasing awareness among safety experts and regulators of risks associated with the use of botanicals and botanical ingredients in food including food supplements. It is becoming clear that "natural" does not equal "safe" and that, in modern society, adverse health effects can occur as a result of (mis)use. With the growing awareness of these issues efforts to ensure safety of botanicals and botanical ingredients are also increasing. Several guidance documents on safety assessment of botanicals and botanical preparations to be used as ingredients in food and food supplements have been published, although, at present, relevant legislative frameworks and guidances for risk assessment are not established yet. Furthermore, when defining possible guidance documents for risk assessment of botanicals, several issues emerge that need to be developed beyond the present state-of-the-art. The present paper describes some of the issues to be considered and developed to a further extent to improve risk assessment of botanicals and botanical preparations, illustrated by examples based on some allylalkoxybenzenes. It is concluded that, for an improved and more accurate future risk assessment of botanicals, it is necessary to further develop and validate: (i) the use of the margin of exposure (MOE) concept for compounds that are both genotoxic and carcinogenic; (ii) new ways to quantify and incorporate matrix effects into risk assessment strategies; (iii) the use of analytical chemistry approaches, enabling complete chemical characterisation of complex mixtures. Defining new approaches in risk assessment would be in line with the inspiring attitude of the late Professor Robert Kroes, who, for example by supporting the

  15. Open Thermodynamic System Concept for Fluviokarst Underground Temperature and Discharge Flow Assessments (United States)

    Machetel, P.; Yuen, D. A.


    In this work, we propose to use Open Thermodynamic System (OTS) frameworks to assess temperatures and discharges of underground flows in fluviokarstic systems. The theoretical formulation is built on the first and second laws of thermodynamics. However, such assumptions would require steady states in the Control Volume to cancel the heat exchanges between underground water and embedding rocks. This situation is obviously never perfectly reached in Nature where flow discharges and temperatures vary with rainfalls, recessions and seasonal or diurnal fluctuations. First, we will shortly show that the results of a pumping test campaign on the Cent-Font (Hérault, France) fluviokarst during summer 2005 are consistent with this theoretical approach. Second, we will present the theoretical formalism of the OTS framework that leads to equation systems involving the temperatures and/or the discharges of the underground and surface flows.Third, this approach will be applied to the white (2003) conceptual model of fluviokarst, and we will present the numerical model built to assess the applicability of these assumptions. The first order of the field hydrologic properties observed at the Cent-Fonts resurgence are well described by the calculations based on this OTS framework. If this agreement is necessary, it is not sufficient to validate the method. In order to test its applicability, the mixing process has been modelized as a cooling reaction in a Continuous Stirred Tank Reactor (CSTR) for which matrix and intrusive flows are introduced continuously while effluent water is recovered at the output. The enthalpy of the various flows is conserved except for the part that exchanges heat with the embedding rocks. However the numerical model shows that in the water saturated part of the CS, the matrix flow swepts heat by convective-advective processes while temporal heat fluctuations from intrusive flows cross the CV walls. The numerical model shows that the convective flow from

  16. Performance assessment and licensing issues for United States commercial near-surface low-level radioactive waste disposal facilities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Birk, S.M.


    The final objective of performance assessment for a near-surface LLW disposal facility is to demonstrate that potential radiological impacts for each of the human exposure pathways will not violate applicable standards. This involves determining potential pathways and specific receptor locations for human exposure to radionuclides; developing appropriate scenarios for each of the institutional phases of a disposal facility; and maintaining quality assurance and control of all data, computer codes, and documentation. The results of a performance assessment should be used to demonstrate that the expected impacts are expected to be less than the applicable standards. The results should not be used to try to predict the actual impact. This is an important distinction that results from the uncertainties inherent in performance assessment calculations. The paper discusses performance objectives; performance assessment phases; scenario selection; mathematical modeling and computer programs; final results of performance assessments submitted for license application; institutional control period; licensing issues; and related research and development activities.

  17. Assessing Sustainability of Logging Practices in the Congo Basin's Managed Forests: the Issue of Commercial Species Recovery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sylvie Gourlet-Fleury


    Full Text Available Traditionally, sustained yield (SY has been viewed as a pillar of sustainable forest management (SFM, but this has been increasingly questioned. Ensuring SY of some species, i.e., a "strong sustainability" paradigm, could be an inadequate criterion if consideration of the social and economic components of the SFM concept are desired. SFM was translated into the ATO/ITTO set of principles, criteria, and indicators (PCI for forest management in the Congo Basin; it resulted in the necessity for a certified logging company to ensure that no significant change in structure and floristic composition would result from logging operations. Besides raising the question of where to place the change threshold, we argue that sustainability must be considered from three indissociable viewpoints: ecological, social, and economic. The issue is how to balance these criteria, knowing that this assessment will involve potential conflicts of representations and beliefs. To discuss these questions, we used the example of two heavily logged timber species in the Congo Basin, sapelli (Entandrophragma cylindricum and ayous (Triplochiton scleroxylon. Using long-term data collected from permanent sample plots in M'Baïki, Central African Republic, we calibrated a matrix model and performed short- and long-term simulations to examine (1 the potential effect of repeated logging of the species under the current national regulation system and (2 the rules that should be set to reach long-term SY. Ensuring long-term SY would require a 22% and 53% decrease in the felling intensity of E. cylindricum and T. scleroxylon, respectively, at first cut, together with an increase in overall logging intensity targeted toward less-used species. Light-demanding E. cylindricum and T. scleroxylon require open forests to regenerate and grow. This new set of rules is probably economically unsustainable for the current African forest industry, and will not meet the ecological requirements

  18. Environmental Assessment of the Proposed Opening of Mathews Brake National Wildlife Refuge to Fishing (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This proposal calls for the opening of Mathews Brake NWR to sport fishing. General regulations pertaining to licenses, creel limits, and methods of taking fish will...

  19. Open-Source web-based geographical information system for health exposure assessment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Evans Barry


    Full Text Available Abstract This paper presents the design and development of an open source web-based Geographical Information System allowing users to visualise, customise and interact with spatial data within their web browser. The developed application shows that by using solely Open Source software it was possible to develop a customisable web based GIS application that provides functions necessary to convey health and environmental data to experts and non-experts alike without the requirement of proprietary software.

  20. Open-Source web-based Geographical Information System for health exposure assessment. (United States)

    Evans, Barry; Sabel, Clive E


    This paper presents the design and development of an open source web-based Geographical Information System allowing users to visualise, customise and interact with spatial data within their web browser. The developed application shows that by using solely Open Source software it was possible to develop a customisable web based GIS application that provides functions necessary to convey health and environmental data to experts and non-experts alike without the requirement of proprietary software.

  1. Assessment of mouse anxiety-like behavior in the light-dark box and open-field arena: role of equipment and procedure. (United States)

    Kulesskaya, Natalia; Voikar, Vootele


    Light-dark box and open field are conventional tests for assessment of anxiety-like behavior in the laboratory mice, based on approach-avoidance conflict. However, except the basic principles, variations in the equipment and procedures are very common. Therefore, contribution of certain methodological issues in different settings was investigated. Three inbred strains (C57BL/6, 129/Sv, DBA/2) and one outbred stock (ICR) of mice were used in the experiments. An effect of initial placement of mice either in the light or dark compartment was studied in the light-dark test. Moreover, two tracking systems were applied - position of the animals was detected either by infrared sensors in square box (1/2 dark) or by videotracking in rectangular box (1/3 dark). Both approaches revealed robust and consistent strain differences in the exploratory behavior. In general, C57BL/6 and ICR mice showed reduced anxiety-like behavior as compared to 129/Sv and DBA/2 strains. However, the latter two strains differed markedly in their behavior. DBA/2 mice displayed high avoidance of the light compartment accompanied by thigmotaxis, whereas the hypoactive 129 mice spent a significant proportion of time in risk-assessment behavior at the opening between two compartments. Starting from the light side increased the time spent in the light compartment and reduced the latency to the first transition. In the open field arena, black floor promoted exploratory behavior - increased time and distance in the center and increased rearing compared to white floor. In conclusion, modifications of the apparatus and procedure had significant effects on approach-avoidance behavior in general whereas the strain rankings remained unaffected.

  2. Assessment and modelling of heavy metal contamination from Madneuli open-pit mine, Georgia (United States)

    Tchelidze, T.; Melikadze, G.; Leveinen, J.; Kaija, J.; Kumpalainen, S.


    Acid mine drainage from banked waste rocks (150 million m^3) and sulfide ore tailings of the Madneuli Cu-Au open-pit mine have created major environmental pollution problem in Bolnisi district, Georgia. Intensive leaching of exposed rocks and direct discharge of mine waters to nearby watercourses have lead to strong heavy metal pollution of groundwater and Rivers Kazretula, Poladauri and Mashavera. Increased concentrations of Cu, Zn, Pb, Ni, Mn, Cr, Cd and Hg exceeding maximum permissible values by 3-2000 times, are registered almost everywhere. Polluted surface waters are used intensively for irrigation. Besides, contaminated groundwater is pumped for irrigation and drinking water supply in alluvial deposits along the rivers. Because the spread of contamination is a slow process, the adverse health effects may not yet have emerged in the investigation area. The transport modelling was used in the framework of risk assessment to estimate the direction, rate and extent of chemical migration in the contaminated site in order to support environmental management and decisionmaking involving identification of high-risk areas, protection from pollutants, and planning of remediation work. Geochemical and contamination transport modelling conducted in this study suggest that the present contamination levels will eventually reach the total investigation area causing serious health risks to the local population in long terms. Mineral lifetime estimates suggest that the contamination might continue for centuries with current pollution loads. Furthermore, geochemical modelling showed that there is no reason to expect the natural attenuation of the contamination. The potential impacts of preventive actions were studied by preparing a model scenario where the present heavy metal contamination level was lowered to 0.1 mg/l in two streams entering the model area. The model results suggest that within 5 years, already significant reduction of concentrations can be reached. The

  3. Quality Issues in Judging Portfolios: Implications for Organizing Teaching Portfolio Assessment Procedures (United States)

    Tigelaar, Dineke E. H.; Dolmans, Diana H. J. M.; Wolfhagen, Ineke H. A. P.; van der Vleuten, Cees P. M.


    This article addresses the choice of the most appropriate procedure for the assessment of portfolios used in teacher and lecturer assessment. A characteristic of modern assessment modes, including portfolios, is that the information they provide is often qualitative and derived from different contexts. Unambiguous, objective rating of portfolios…

  4. “Which Child Left Behind”: Historical Issues Regarding Equity in Science Assessment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Joy Cumming


    Full Text Available Assessment of learning plays a dominant role in formal education in the forms of determining features of curriculum that are emphasized, pedagogic methods that teachers use with their students, and parents’ and employers’ understanding of how well students have performed. A common perception is that fair assessment applies the same mode of assessment and content focus for all students—the approach of assessments in international comparative studies of science achievement. This article examines research evidence demonstrating that the act of assessment is not neutral—different forms of assessment advantage or disadvantage groups of students on the basis of family backgrounds, gender, race, or disability. Assessment that implicitly or explicitly captures the social capital of the child serves to consolidate, not address, educational equity. The article provides an overview of ways that science curriculum focus and assessment can introduce bias in the identification of student achievement. It examines the effect of changes to curriculum and assessment approaches in science, and relationships between assessment of science and the cultural context of the student. Recommendations are provided for science–assessment research to address bias for different groups of students.

  5. Aligning Science Assessment Standards: New Mexico and the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). Issues & Answers. REL 2007-No. 021 (United States)

    Timms, Michael; Schneider, Steven; Lee, Cindy; Rolfhus, Eric


    This policy research document is intended for New Mexico policymakers to use when examining possible changes to the state assessment's alignment with the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). The 2009 NAEP test is not yet in existence, so the purpose of this report is to give policymakers a head start in determining where they might,…

  6. Critical Issues in Assessment: Let's Take the Mystery out of Assessment for Vocational Preparation, Career Development, and Transition. (United States)

    Leconte, Pamela J.; And Others


    Assessment of students with disabilities is addressed in the context of career development, vocational education, and transition. Assessment is viewed as humanistic, therapeutic, holistic, and leading to self-determination and self-advocacy. Profiling, a process of linking a database of aptitude, skills, abilities, and instructional methodology,…

  7. The continuous excavating technique system parameters optimization and economic assessment simulation model in open-pit mine

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHAO Bao-fu


    Based on the fundamental simulation theories and methods, this paper studies such questions as truck dispatching, discrete processing of belt system continuous haulage, belt system interlock, and economic assessment methods. On the basis of above studies, the paper establishes a simulation model for open-p i t mine semi-continuous production technique system. The paper applies GPSS lang u age to construct a simulation program, and the program has been successfully app lied in a certain coalmine.

  8. Comparative health technology assessment of robotic-assisted, direct manual laparoscopic and open surgery: a prospective study


    Turchetti, Giuseppe; Pierotti, Francesca; Palla, Ilaria; Manetti, Stefania; Freschi, Cinzia; Ferrari, Vincenzo; Cuschieri, Alfred


    Background Despite many publications reporting on the increased hospital cost of robotic-assisted surgery (RAS) compared to direct manual laparoscopic surgery (DMLS) and open surgery (OS), the reported health economic studies lack details on clinical outcome, precluding valid health technology assessment (HTA). Methods The present prospective study reports total cost analysis on 699 patients undergoing general surgical, gynecological and thoracic operations between 2011 and 2014 in the Italia...


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wellington SAMKANGE


    Full Text Available A study was carried out to assess the assessment procedures used at one Open and Distance Learning (ODL institution in Zimbabwe. The study focused on the views and perceptions of current and former students of the university. The study also analyzed some documents on assessment procedures at the university. The study used the qualitative methodology and data was qualitatively analyzed. The focus was on fifty current and former students in the Bachelor of Education in Educational Management (BEDM and Master of Education in Educational Management (MEDM programmes. Results indicated that both current and former students were generally satisfied with the assessment methods used in their programmes. These included assignments, examinations and research projects/dissertations. It was noted that examinations had the highest weighting in both programmes. However, the study also noted that there were some practices that compromised quality if not carefully handled. These included the supervision of research projects and dissertations by only one supervisor per student. There were fears of bias in that regard. The study came up with a number of recommendations. These included the need to reconcile and align regulations in Tutorial Letters with General Information and Regulations currently in use. Other recommendations included the need to review the study period without compromising the quality of education for BEDM, and the need to deal with issues of plagiarism of assignments. It should also be mandatory for Masters’ students to attend a viva voce to defend their dissertations. Finally, ODL demands innovative assessment methods which should be clearly distinct from conventional modes of assessment.

  10. Learning about Complex Multi-Stakeholder Issues: Assessing the Visual Problem Appraisal

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Witteveen, L.M.; Put, M.; Leeuwis, C.


    This paper presents an evaluation of the visual problem appraisal (VPA) learning environment in higher education. The VPA has been designed for the training of competences that are required in complex stakeholder settings in relation to sustainability issues. The design of VPA incorporates a diversi

  11. An assessment of the current and potential future natural and anthropogenic issues facing migratory shorebirds

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sutherland, W.J.; Alves, J.A.; Chang, C.H.; Davidson, D.C.; Finlayson, C.M.; Gill, J.A.; Gill, R.E.; González, P.M.; Gunnarsson, T.G.; Kleijn, D.; Spray, C.J.; Szekely, T.; Thompson, D.B.A.


    We review the conservation issues facing migratory shorebird populations that breed in temperate regions and use wetlands in the non-breeding season. Shorebirds are excellent model organisms for understanding ecological, behavioural and evolutionary processes and are often used as indicators of wetl

  12. Assessing the Relationship among Defining Issues Test Scores and Crystallised and Fluid Intellectual Indices (United States)

    Derryberry, W. Pitt; Jones, Kristy L.; Grieve, Frederick G.; Barger, Brian


    Differing findings exist on how Defining Issues Test (DIT) scores relate to intelligence. Further study is needed in order to address aspects of intellect not previously considered and to address how these relationships rival studies that have compared indices of intellect with constructs similar to DIT scores. In the present study, a sample of…

  13. A Second Dystopia in Education: Validity Issues in Authentic Assessment Practices (United States)

    Hathcoat, John D.; Penn, Jeremy D.; Barnes, Laura L.; Comer, Johnathan C.


    Authentic assessments used in response to accountability demands in higher education face at least two threats to validity. First, a lack of interchangeability between assessment tasks introduces bias when using aggregate-based scores at an institutional level. Second, reliance on written products to capture constructs such as critical thinking…

  14. An Analysis of Accommodations Issues from the Standards and Assessments Peer Review. Technical Report 51 (United States)

    Thurlow, Martha; Christensen, Laurene; Lail, Kathryn E.


    To meet the assessment requirements of the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), states must ensure the inclusion of students with disabilities, as well as provide for the appropriate use of assessment accommodations. Accommodations have been defined in a number of ways. In the Council of Chief…

  15. Implementing Writing Assessment in a Degree Completion Program: Key Issues and Lessons Learned (United States)

    Hoyt, Jeff E.; Allred, Ellen R.; Hunt, Rob


    This article details the advantages and challenges of implementing writing assessment in a degree completion program; it describes the steps involved in the writing assessment process. Study results demonstrate that graduates from a degree completion program generally have adequate writing skills; nevertheless, many could improve their…

  16. The Fidelity of Formative Assessment Implementation: Issues of Breadth and Quality (United States)

    Wylie, E. Caroline; Lyon, Christine J.


    The paper examines the breadth and quality of formative assessment implementation of 202 mathematics and science teachers who participated in a two-year, school-based professional development programme that focused on formative assessment. Results are triangulated using three sources of data: baseline and end-of-Year 2 data from an annual survey,…

  17. From the Editors: An assessment of open access journals: quality, prestige and social responsibility

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pep Simo


    Full Text Available This paper presents the new objectives and revises the last volume evolution, analyzing factors like prestige, quality, diffusion and social responsibility in science. It exposes a qualitative analysis of the maturity state like example of open access journal.

  18. Direct assessment of tensile stress-crack opening behavior of Strain Hardening Cementitious Composites (SHCC)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pereira, Eduardo B.; Fischer, Gregor; Barros, Joaquim A.O.


    at the level of a single crack. The derived tensile stress-crack opening behavior is utilized to analyze and compare the influence of various composite parameters on the resulting tensile behavior. The deformations occurring during tensile loading are furthermore examined using a digital image...

  19. Prediction and Assessment of Student Behaviour in Open and Distance Education in Computers Using Bayesian Networks (United States)

    Xenos, Michalis


    This paper presents a methodological approach based on Bayesian Networks for modelling the behaviour of the students of a bachelor course in computers in an Open University that deploys distance educational methods. It describes the structure of the model, its application for modelling the behaviour of student groups in the Informatics Course of…

  20. A Needs Assessment of ODL Educators to Determine Their Effective Use of Open Educational Resources (United States)

    Okonkwo, Charity Akuadi


    Nigeria has joined the global race of teaching and learning in a changing educational environment by adopting open and distance learning (ODL). Although it is a global trend, ODL poses some challenges at local levels, one of which is the untimely production of teaching materials currently affecting instructional delivery in Nigeria. The modern…

  1. Assessment of Hydrogen Sulfide Minimum Detection Limits of an Open Path Tunable Diode Laser (United States)

    During June 2007, U.S. EPA conducted a feasibility study to determine whether the EPA OTM 10 measurement approach, also known as radial plume mapping (RPM), was feasible. A Boreal open-path tunable diode laser (OP-TDL) to collect path-integrated hydrogen sulfide measurements alon...

  2. Assessing Learners' Satisfication towards Support Services Delivery in National Open University Nigeria: Implications for Counselling Services (United States)

    Okopi, Fidel; Ofole, Ndidi


    This study aims at determining the level of students' satisfaction of learner support services in the study centres of NOUN--National Open University of Nigeria and whether the support services offered at the study centres have significant influence on the level of students' satisfaction. A descriptive survey of ex-post facto research design was…


    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Radel, Ross; Rochau, Gary E


    This report evaluates transportation issues for nuclear material in the proposed Global Nuclear Energy Partnership (GNEP) fuel cycle. Since many details of the GNEP program are yet to be determined, this document is intended only to identify general issues. The existing regulatory environment is determined to be largely prepared to incorporate the changes that the GNEP program will introduce. Nuclear material vulnerability and attractiveness are considered with respect to the various transport stages within the GNEP fuel cycle. Physical protection options are then outlined for the transportation of this nuclear material. It is determined that increased transportation security will be required for the GNEP fuel cycle, particularly for international transport. Finally, transportation considerations for several fuel cycle scenarios are discussed. These scenarios compare the current "once-through" fuel cycle with various aspects of the proposed GNEP fuel cycle. 3

  4. Assessing ethical and social issues of transtelephonic electrocardiography (TTEGG) in Chile. (United States)

    Lamas, Eugenia; Miguel, Silvia; Muehlan, Holger; Schmidt, Silke; Salinas, Rodrigo A


    The aim of this study was to focus on the ethical and social issues derived from the implementation of transtelephonic electrocardiography (TTECG) in the public healthcare sector in Chile, studying patients and healthcare providers' acceptance and expectations concerning: (a) TTECG effectiveness and safety; and (b) data protection issues, such as confidentiality, privacy and security. For this purpose, we developed two psychosocial surveys; the first was addressed to patients receiving transtelephonic electrocardiogram (either in the emergency services of hospitals or in distant primary care services) and the second one aimed at healthcare providers involved in either administering and/or interpreting it. Results included: (a) major acceptability of TTECG in terms of safety and security; (b) privacy and confidentiality of the patients were considered to be well protected; and (c) the patient-doctor relationship was not affected by this device.

  5. Assessing ethical and social issues of transtelephonic electrocardiography (TTEGG in Chile

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eugenia Lamas


    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to focus on the ethical and social issues derived from the implementation of transtelephonic electrocardiography (TTECG in the public healthcare sector in Chile, studying patients and healthcare providers' acceptance and expectations concerning: (a TTECG effectiveness and safety; and (b data protection issues, such as confidentiality, privacy and security. For this purpose, we developed two psychosocial surveys; the first was addressed to patients receiving transtelephonic electrocardiogram (either in the emergency services of hospitals or in distant primary care services and the second one aimed at healthcare providers involved in either administering and/or interpreting it. Results included: (a major acceptability of TTECG in terms of safety and security; (b privacy and confidentiality of the patients were considered to be well protected; and (c the patient-doctor relationship was not affected by this device.

  6. On the nature, assessment, and treatment of fetal pain: neurobiological bases, pragmatic issues, and ethical concerns. (United States)

    Gupta, Anita; Giordano, James


    Over the past 2 decades, the issue of fetal pain and stress has attracted considerable attention and has become the focus of ongoing debate in light of advances in medical diagnostics and technology that allow invasive prenatal medical intervention(s), and an enhanced understanding of fetal neurophysiology, together with a broadened appreciation for the relationship of brain and consciousness. In this essay, we explore the issue of fetal pain based upon knowledge of both the ontogeny and function of the nervous system and the interaction of brain, mind, and pain. We posit that contemporary understanding of neurological development fortifies appreciation that pain sensation and perception occurs during (later) fetal life and that this pain warrants clinical consideration during the conduct of invasive prenatal procedures. We present differing perspectives on this issue, discuss the relative merits and difficulties of these positions, and ultimately describe the fundamental basis for a consideration of fetal pain and address this consideration with regard to pragmatic and ethical benefits, burdens, and risks. We adopt a neurocentric, yet consilient approach that entails both scientific and philosophical orientations. By attempting to reveal inherent limitations in our contemporary appreciation and approach(es) to fetal pain, we hope to illustrate the need for and posit potential venues toward resolving these limitations and dilemmas.

  7. Ergonomic issues in ewe cheese production: reliability of the Strain Index and OCRA Checklist risk assessments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John Rosecrance


    Full Text Available Occupational ergonomists often use a variety of methods to identify jobs that are considered at high risk for the development of work-related musculoskeletal illnesses. The Strain Index (SI and the Occupational Repetitive Actions (OCRA Checklist are two popular upper limb risk assessment tools used in many industries, including the agro-food industry. Both methods are based on similar biomechanical, physiological and epidemiologic principles, but their approach to quantification and estimation of risk factor magnitude is quite different. The purpose of this study was to assess the inter-method reliability of SI and OCRA Checklist. Methods: Twenty-one jobs were video recorded in a Sardinian cheese manufacturing facility. Eight raters were recruited to assess job exposures to physical risk factors using the SI and OCRA Checklist. Inter-method reliability was characterized using proportion of overall agreement, Cohen’s kappa, and Spearman and Pearson correlations. Results: Strain Index and the OCRA Checklist assessments produced generally reliable results, classifying the risk of 35 of 42 (83% job exposures similarly. Conclusions: The OCRA Checklist and SI risk assessments are reliable upper limb measures of physical work exposures. Both measures appear useful for assessing risk of upper limb disorders of work tasks in the agro-food industry. However, the SI is specific to disorders of the distal upper limb and perhaps most useful for assessing risk in work primarily involving the wrist and fingers. Whereas the OCRA Checklist, which includes an assessment of the shoulder, may be more appropriate for evaluating jobs that also require extended periods of reaching and shoulder activity.

  8. Stability assessment and feature analysis of slope in Nanfen Open Pit Iron Mine

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yang Jun; Tao Zhigang; Li Baoliang; Gui Yang; Li Haifeng


    Under the combined influences of special topography and the long term mining in Nanfen Open Pit Iron Mine,many large scale landslide masses appeared in heading side of stope,and tens of millions of iron mine is buried underside,making great economic losses.In order to guide the safety mining and increase the supply quantity,this paper through the use of MSARMA-method and the "MSARMA evaluation and analytical system for slope stability analysis" based on this method,which aimed at the quantitative evaluating of the slope stability before and after the actual mining below the slip mass,and the sensitivity analysis for the main influencing factor,providing scientific proof for the parameter optimization of open mine surface slope,the security and sustainable exploitation.

  9. Monetary Policy Shocks in a Small Open Economy: Assessing the 'Puzzles' of Monetary Policy by SVAR


    Ajluni, Jarir


    The paper examines the effects of monetary policy shocks and its puzzles on a small open economy using quarterly Korean data by applying a theoretically motivated Structural VAR, with the objective of introducing empirical evidence that investigates the magnitude and persistence of monetary policy using impulse response function analysis. There is some evidence on the occurrences of monetary policy puzzles confirming previous outcomes in the literature, results suggest that domestic monetary ...

  10. Implementing ILDs and Assessment in Small-enrollment, Calculus-based Physics Classes -- Lessons, Observations and Open Questions (United States)

    Mason-McCaffrey, Deborah


    At Salem State, we offer a Physics minor, but most of our teaching load is support courses for other science majors and a lab sequence which satisfies the University's core education requirement. In three years of using assessments and ILDs in small-enrollment calculus-based Physics classes, there has been a significant implementation learning curve, there are encouraging results, a few cautions, and still some open questions to report. ILDs can be highly effective teaching tools. They do require significant advance preparation as well as a safe environment for student participation. Motivating students to do their best on assessment pre- and post-tests can also be difficult. Strategies for motivating assessment performance, experiments using clickers to encourage participation in ILDs, and modifying and developing home-grown ILDs are discussed.

  11. Hybrid or open pollinated maize varieties? A socio-economic assessment of Nepalese farmers’ experiences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Binod Kafle


    Full Text Available Analysis of factors affecting adoption of hybrid and open pollinated maize varieties had not been taken yet in Nepal. Viewing this fact, this study was undertaken consisting of four purposively selected VDCs from two central Terai districts, Bara and Sarlahi, of Nepal. A total of 110 maize growers including 86 adopters and 24 non adopters of hybrid maize varieties (adopters of open pollinated maize varieties were interviewed with the help of structured questionnaire. Results of t-test showed that adopters of hybrid maize varieties had significantly larger farm size and, size of maize farm, were more experienced on maize farming, and used significantly higher amount of chemical fertilizers but lower amount of organic manures than the non-adopters. Further, more adopters used irrigation water, pesticides and hired labor than the non-adopters. The result showed that a substantial proportion of land area grown to maize was cultivated to hybrid maize varieties with an adoption rate of 81.9 % while the adoption rate for open pollinated varieties was estimated as 18.1%. The results of the binary logistic regression analysis showed that adoption of hybrid maize was positively influenced by farm size, irrigation availability, farmer’s attitude towards insect and disease tolerance characteristics of hybrid maize, male headed family and credit availability in the surveyed area. However, farming experience on maize was negatively associated with the adoption of hybrid maize varieties.

  12. Issues and challenges in the assessment, diagnosis and treatment of cardiovascular risk factors: Assessing the needs of cardiologists

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dupuis Martin


    Full Text Available Abstract Background This needs assessment, initiated by the Academy for Healthcare Education Inc. in cooperation with AXDEV Group Inc., explored the knowledge, attitudes, behavior, and skills of community-based and academic-affiliated U.S. cardiologists in the area of CV risk assessment, treatment, and management from July 2006 to December 2006. Methods The needs assessment used a multistage, mixed-method approach to collect, analyze, and verify data from two independent sources. The exploratory phase collected data from a representative sampling of U.S. cardiologists by means of qualitative panel meetings, one-on-one interviews, and quantitative questionnaires. In the validation phase, 150 cardiologists from across the United States completed a quantitative online questionnaire. Data were analyzed with standardized statistical methods. Results The needs assessment found that cardiologists have areas of weakness pertaining to their interpersonal skills, which may influence patient-physician communication and patient adherence. Cardiologists appeared to have little familiarity with or lend little credence to the concept of relative CV risk. In daily clinical practice, they faced challenges with regard to optimal patient outcome in areas of patient referral from primary-care providers, CV risk assessment and treatment, and patient monitoring. Community-based and academic-affiliated cardiologists appeared to be only moderately interested in educational interventions that pertain to CV risk-reduction strategies. Conclusion Educational interventions that target cardiologists' interpersonal skills to enhance their efficacy may benefit community-based and academic-affiliated specialists. Other desirable educational initiatives should address gaps in the patient referral process, improve patient knowledge and understanding of their disease, and provide supportive educational tools and materials to enhance patient-physician communication.

  13. Designing Conservation Corridors in Production Landscapes: Assessment Methods, Implementation Issues, and Lessons Learned

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amanda T. Lombard


    Full Text Available Designing broad-scale conservation corridors has become increasingly common as a way of conducting an assessment for achieving targets for the representation and persistence of nature. However, since many of these corridors must traverse agricultural and other production landscapes, planning and implementation are not trivial tasks. Most approaches to conservation assessments in the dynamic world of production landscapes are data-intensive and analytically complex. However, in the real world, donor and other external requirements impose time and budget constraints, and dictate strong stakeholder involvement in the entire planning process. In order to accommodate this, assessments must be rapid, cheap, and the approach and products must be comprehensible and acceptable to stakeholders. Here we describe such an assessment aimed at identifying and implementing a network of conservation corridors in the Gouritz Initiative project domain of South Africa's Cape Floristic Region hotspot. We used empirical data and expert knowledge to identify a corridor network hypothesized to sustain key ecological and evolutionary processes. We also consulted experts to provide a spatially explicit assessment of the opportunity costs of conservation associated with agriculture, the predominant land use in the region. We used these products to identify categories of land requiring different actions and instruments to achieve conservation goals, thereby moving from the "where" to the "how" of conservation. This information was then fed into the collaborative strategy development process for the Gouritz Initiative. Our discussion emphasizes the lessons that we learnt from undertaking this assessment, particularly lessons regarding the implementation of the planning products. We conclude that at the outset of any planning project, a consensus on the vision must be achieved, a detailed social assessment of appropriate institutions must be undertaken, and a learning

  14. Methodological issues in life cycle assessment of mixed-culture polyhydroxyalkanoate production utilising waste as feedstock. (United States)

    Heimersson, Sara; Morgan-Sagastume, Fernando; Peters, Gregory M; Werker, Alan; Svanström, Magdalena


    Assessing the environmental performance of emerging technologies using life cycle assessment (LCA) can be challenging due to a lack of data in relation to technologies, application areas or other life cycle considerations, or a lack of LCA methodology that address the specific concerns. Nevertheless, LCA can be a valuable tool in the environmental optimisation in the technology development phase. One emerging technology is the mixed-culture production of polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHAs). PHA production by pure microbial cultures has been developed and assessed in several LCAs during the previous decade. Recent developments within mixed-culture PHA production call for environmental assessment to guide in technology development. Mixed-culture PHA production can use the organic content in wastewater as a feedstock; the production may then be integrated with wastewater treatment (WWT) processes. This means that mixed-culture PHA is produced as a by-product from services in the WWT. This article explores different methodological challenges for LCA of mixed-culture PHA production using organic material in wastewater as feedstock. LCAs of both pure- and mixed-culture PHA production were reviewed. Challenges, similarities and differences when assessing PHA production by mixed- or pure-cultures were identified and the resulting implications for methodological choices in LCA were evaluated and illustrated, using a case study with mixed- and pure-culture PHA model production systems, based on literature data. Environmental impacts of processes producing multiple products or services need to be allocated between the different products or services. Such situations occur both in feedstock production and when the studied system is providing multiple functions. The selection of allocation method is shown to determine the LCA results. The type of data used, for electricity in the energy system, is shown to be important for the results, which indicates, a strong regional dependency of

  15. US National Climate Assessment (NCA) Scenarios for Assessing Our Climate Future: Issues and Methodological Perspectives Background Whitepaper for Participants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Moss, Richard H.; Engle, Nathan L.; Hall, John; Jacobs, Kathy; Lempert, Rob; Mearns, L. O.; Melillo, Jerry; Mote, Phil; O' Brien, Sheila; Rosenzweig, C.; Ruane, Alex; Sheppard, Stephen; Vallario, Robert W.; Wiek, Arnim; Wilbanks, Thomas


    This whitepaper is intended to provide a starting point for discussion at a workshop for the National Climate Assessment (NCA) that focuses on the use and development of scenarios. The paper will provide background needed by participants in the workshop in order to review options for developing and using scenarios in NCA. The paper briefly defines key terms and establishes a conceptual framework for developing consistent scenarios across different end uses and spatial scales. It reviews uses of scenarios in past U.S. national assessments and identifies potential users of and needs for scenarios for both the report scheduled for release in June 2013 and to support an ongoing distributed assessment process in sectors and regions around the country. Because scenarios prepared for the NCA will need to leverage existing research, the paper takes account of recent scientific advances and activities that could provide needed inputs. Finally, it considers potential approaches for providing methods, data, and other tools for assessment participants. We note that the term 'scenarios' has many meanings. An important goal of the whitepaper (and portions of the workshop agenda) is pedagogical (i.e., to compare different meanings and uses of the term and make assessment participants aware of the need to be explicit about types and uses of scenarios). In climate change research, scenarios have been used to establish bounds for future climate conditions and resulting effects on human and natural systems, given a defined level of greenhouse gas emissions. This quasi-predictive use contrasts with the way decision analysts typically use scenarios (i.e., to consider how robust alternative decisions or strategies may be to variation in key aspects of the future that are uncertain). As will be discussed, in climate change research and assessment, scenarios describe a range of aspects of the future, including major driving forces (both human activities and natural processes

  16. Key issues and options in accounting for carbon sequestration and temporary storage in life cycle assessment and carbon footprinting

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Brandao, Miguel; Levasseur, Annie; Kirschbaum, Miko U. F.


    footprinting (CF) are increasingly popular tools for the environmental assessment of products, that take into account their entire life cycle. There have been significant efforts to develop robust methods to account for the benefits, if any, of sequestration and temporary storage and release of biogenic carbon....... However, there is still no overall consensus on the most appropriate ways of considering and quantifying it. Method: This paper reviews and discusses six available methods for accounting for the potential climate impacts of carbon sequestration and temporary storage or release of biogenic carbon in LCA...... and CF. Several viewpoints and approaches are presented in a structured manner to help decision-makers in their selection of an option from competing approaches for dealing with timing issues, including delayed emissions of fossil carbon. Results: Key issues identified are that the benefits of temporary...

  17. Climate and climate-related issues for the safety assessment SR-Site

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)


    The purpose of this report is to document current scientific knowledge on climate and climate-related conditions, relevant to the long-term safety of a KBS-3 repository, to a level required for an adequate treatment in the safety assessment SR-Site. The report also presents a number of dedicated studies on climate and selected climate-related processes of relevance for the assessment of long term repository safety. Based on this information, the report presents a number of possible future climate developments for Forsmark, the site selected for building a repository for spent nuclear fuel in Sweden (Figure 1-1). The presented climate developments are used as basis for the selection and analysis of SR-Site safety assessment scenarios in the SR-Site main report /SKB 2011/. The present report is based on research conducted and published by SKB as well as on research reported in the general scientific literature

  18. Clinical intervention in aging: ethicolegal issues in assessing risk and benefit

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pierre Mallia


    Full Text Available Pierre MalliaMedical School, University of Malta, Mater Dei Hospital, MaltaAbstract: The ethical dimension of treating the elderly, including risk–benefit analysis, focuses mainly on quality of life and end-of-life issues. These include arguments on advance directives and the concept of extraordinary treatments. This paper looks more closely at the philosophical approach to aging in order to address questions on the direction of research and issues such as longevity and social construction of the aging process. It is the way society moves to understand the value-laden choices on aging that directs the goals of treatment and research. Whilst these vary culturally, one has to reckon with a postmodern view of aging which may, in turn, reflect on the course of action of future care and research in aging. The paper canvasses how, in reality, four principles act as guidelines for moral discourse, and discusses how changing values in society decide this course of action.Keywords: aging, principles, decision-making, conflict, treatment, clinical decision-making, social construction 

  19. Use of Monte Carlo methods in environmental risk assessments at the INEL: Applications and issues

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Harris, G.; Van Horn, R.


    The EPA is increasingly considering the use of probabilistic risk assessment techniques as an alternative or refinement of the current point estimate of risk. This report provides an overview of the probabilistic technique called Monte Carlo Analysis. Advantages and disadvantages of implementing a Monte Carlo analysis over a point estimate analysis for environmental risk assessment are discussed. The general methodology is provided along with an example of its implementation. A phased approach to risk analysis that allows iterative refinement of the risk estimates is recommended for use at the INEL.

  20. An Assessment of Experiential Learning of Global Poverty Issues through International Service Projects (United States)

    Le, Quan V.; Raven, Peter V.


    Service learning has been used to supplement a standard business curriculum, but not typically in an international business context. We report the results of two short-term study abroad programs in which we incorporated service learning projects, one in Cambodia and the other in Vietnam. Our objective is to assess how we organized and delivered…

  1. Quantitative approaches to physical ergonomic issues encountered while assessing workplace designs

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Albin, T.J.


    Ergonomic and design practitioners routinely make assessments of the appropriateness of a workspace. For example, practitioners must answer questions such as: “will the user be at risk of injury, is the space high enough, wide enough and deep enough to accommodate the intended users, does the desig

  2. Issues in Post-Entry Language Assessment in English-Medium Universities (United States)

    Read, John


    Students entering English-medium universities around the world come from diverse linguistic backgrounds and many find it difficult to cope with the language demands of their degree courses. This speech focuses first on the motivations for introducing what are known in Australia as post-entry language assessments (PELAs). I discuss in particular…

  3. Practitioner Review: Adolescent Alcohol Use Disorders--Assessment and Treatment Issues (United States)

    Perepletchikova, Francheska; Krystal, John H.; Kaufman, Joan


    Background: Alcohol use disorders in adolescents are associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Over the past decade, there has been a burgeoning of research on adolescent alcohol use disorders. Methods: A summary of the alcohol assessment tools is provided, and randomized studies reviewed and synthesized to provide an overview of state…

  4. The use of physical assessment skills by registered nurses in Australia: issues for nursing education. (United States)

    Birks, Melanie; Cant, Robyn; James, Ainsley; Chung, Catherine; Davis, Jenny


    The purpose of pre-service nursing education programs is to prepare competent graduates who are able to function as safe, professional registered nurses. An extensive element of these programs is the teaching of physical assessment skills, with most programs educating students to perform over 120 such skills. Previous research from North America suggests that the majority of skills taught to nurses in their pre-service programs are not used in practice. As part of a larger study, an online survey was used to explore use of 121 physical assessment skills by Australian nurses. Recruitment occurred via mailed invitation to members of the Australian Nursing Federation. Data were extracted from 1220 completed questionnaires returned by nurses who were mostly employed in New South Wales, were female and experienced nurses. Respondents indicated that they used only 34% of skills routinely. Results reinforce evidence found in the literature that many of the skills taught to nurses are either not used at all (35.5%) or are used rarely (31%). These findings have implications for the teaching of physical assessment skills in pre-service nursing programs, and raise questions about the value of extensive skills teaching in the context of contemporary health care. Further research into barriers to the use of physical assessment skills in nursing and the need for comprehensive skills preparation for the generalist nurse is likely to offer some solutions to these questions.

  5. Validity, Reliability, and Equity Issues in an Observational Talent Assessment Process in the Performing Arts (United States)

    Oreck, Barry A.; Owen, Steven V.; Baum, Susan M.


    The lack of valid, research-based methods to identify potential artistic talent hampers the inclusion of the arts in programs for the gifted and talented. The Talent Assessment Process in Dance, Music, and Theater (D/M/T TAP) was designed to identify potential performing arts talent in diverse populations, including bilingual and special education…

  6. Test Adaptation and Cross-Cultural Assessment From a Business Perspective: Issues and Recommendations (United States)

    Casillas, Alex; Robbins, Steven B.


    Test adaptation and cross-cultural assessment activities are skyrocketing as the demand for educational opportunities and personnel selection grow both within the United States and across the industrializing world. We chose a qualitative, case study approach to identify central themes encountered by ACT, a not-for-profit organization that has…

  7. Five Big, Big Five Issues : Rationale, Content, Structure, Status, and Crosscultural Assessment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    De Raad, Boele


    This article discusses the rationale, content, structure, status, and crosscultural assessment of the Big Five trait factors, focusing on topics of dispute and misunderstanding. Taxonomic restrictions of the original Big Five forerunner, the "Norman Five," are discussed, and criticisms regarding the

  8. Issues with Self-Monitoring Assessments: Comments on Koretz and Beguin (2010) (United States)

    Sinharay, Sandip; Haberman, Shelby J.; Zwick, Rebecca


    Several researchers (e.g., Klein, Hamilton, McCaffrey, & Stecher, 2000; Koretz & Barron, 1998; Linn, 2000) have asserted that test-based accountability, a crucial component of U.S. education policy, has resulted in score inflation. This inference has relied on comparisons with performance on other tests such as the National Assessment of…

  9. Educating Students to Become Culturally Competent Physical Therapists: Issues of Teaching and Assessment (United States)

    Barnes, Lisa Jayroe


    With the growing multicultural population within the United States, healthcare providers need to be prepared to care for and educate adult clients from various cultural backgrounds. The purpose of the study was to examine the teaching and assessment methods being used by faculty in the education of future physical therapists in teaching the…

  10. Oral Reading Fluency Assessment: Issues of Construct, Criterion, and Consequential Validity (United States)

    Valencia, Sheila W.; Smith, Antony T.; Reece, Anne M.; Li, Min; Wixson, Karen K.; Newman, Heather


    This study investigated multiple models for assessing oral reading fluency, including 1-minute oral reading measures that produce scores reported as words correct per minute (wcpm). We compared a measure of wcpm with measures of the individual and combined indicators of oral reading fluency (rate, accuracy, prosody, and comprehension) to examine…

  11. Eu-NORSEWInD - Assessment of Viability of Open Source CFD Code for the Wind Industry

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Stickland, Matt; Scanlon, Tom; Fabre, Sylvie;


    hours of compute time to solve even on a high speed processor. One way of reducing the compute time is by employing parallel processing on a number of computational nodes. However; increasing the number of computational nodes may involve the purchase of extra licenses if using a standard commercial code....... The cost of the extra licences can become the limit on the final number of nodes employed. Whilst there are significant benefits to be found when using a commercial code which has a user friendly interface and has undergone significant verification testing the financial advantages of using an open source...

  12. Traffic-related air quality assessment for open road tolling highway facility. (United States)

    Lin, Jie; Yu, Dan


    Open road tolling (ORT) design has been considered as an effective means of smoothing highway traffic and reducing travel delay on toll highways. In this paper it is demonstrated that ORT can also achieve significant air quality benefits over the conventional toll plaza design. The near roadside carbon monoxide (CO) concentration levels can be reduced by up to 37%, and diesel particulate matter (DPM) emissions can decrease by as much as 58%. These large expected air quality benefits have great implications to the regional efforts of reducing mobile source air pollution toward achieving attainment status and healthier living environment.

  13. CARDIOVASCULAR RISK ASSESSMENT AND SUPPORT TECHNIQUES Whole blood viscosity assessment issues I: Extrapolation chart and reference values

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ezekiel Uba Nwose


    Full Text Available Background: There are many different methods for the assessment of whole blood viscosity, but not every pathology unit has equipment for any of the methods. However, a validated arithmetic method exists whereby whole blood viscosity can be extrapolated from haematocrit and total serum proteins. Aims: The objective of this work is to develop an algorithm in the form of a chart by which clinicians can easily extrapolate whole blood viscosity values in their consulting rooms or on the ward. Another objective is to suggest normal, subnormal and critical reference ranges applicable to this method. Materials and Methods: Whole blood viscosity at high shear stress was determined, from various possible pairs of haematocrit and total proteins. A chart was formulated so that whole blood viscosity can be extrapolated. After determination of two standard deviations from the mean and ascertainment of symmetric distribution, normal and abnormal reference ranges were defined. Results: The clinicians’ user-friendly chart is presented. Considering presumptive lower and upper limits, the continuum of ≤14.28, 14.29 – 15.00, 15.01 – 19.01, 19.02 – 19.39 and ≥19.40 (208 Sec-1 is obtained as reference ranges for critically low, subnormal low, normal, subnormal high and critically high whole blood viscosity levels respectively. Conclusion: This article advances a validated method to provide a user-friendly chart that would enable clinicians to assess whole blood viscosity for any patients who has results for full blood count and total proteins. It would make the assessment of whole blood viscosity costless and the neglect of a known cardiovascular risk factor less excusable.

  14. Individual social security accounts: issues in assessing administrative feasibility and costs. (United States)

    Olsen, K A; Salisbury, D L


    Whether to add individual accounts (IAs) to the Social Security system is a highly political issue. But almost lost in the debate so far have been any practical considerations about how to administer such accounts. Any discussion of whether to create individual accounts must also address the basic but critical questions of how they would work: Who would run them? What would they cost? Logistically, are they even possible? This EBRI Issue Brief provides an overview of the most salient administrative issues facing the current Social Security reform debate--issues that challenge proponents to carefully think through how their proposals could be implemented so as to achieve their policy goals. The options and difficulties in administering IAs raise concerns that cut across ideology. The object of this report is neither to dissuade the advocates nor support the critics of individual accounts. Rather, it is to bring practical considerations to a political debate that has largely ignored the pragmatic challenges of whether IAs would be too complex for participants to understand or too difficult for record keepers to administer. The major findings in this analysis include: Adding individual accounts to Social Security could be the largest undertaking in the history of the U.S. financial market, and no system to date has the capacity to administer such a system. The number of workers currently covered by Social Security--the largest single entitlement program in the nation--is at least four times higher than the combined number of all tax-favored employment-based retirement accounts in the United States, which are administered by hundreds of entities. Direct comparisons between employment-based retirement savings plans and Social Security reform are tenuous at best. Social Security covers workers and businesses that are disproportionately excluded from employment-based plans. Because of these differences, a system of individual Social Security accounts would be more

  15. Assessment of multifaceted environmental issues and model development of an Indo-Burma hotspot region. (United States)

    Rai, Prabhat Kumar


    The present article provides a multifaceted critical research review on environmental issues intimately related with the socio-economy of North East India (NE), a part of Indo-Burma hotspot. Further, the article addresses the issue of sustainable development of NE India through diverse ecological practices inextricably linked with traditional ecological knowledge (TEK). The biodiversity of NE India comprises endemic floral diversity, particularly medicinal plants of importance to pharmaceutical industry, and unique faunal diversity. Nevertheless, it is very unfortunate that this great land of biodiversity is least explored taxonomically as well as biotechnologically, probably due to geographical and political constraints. Different anthropogenic and socio-economic factors have perturbed the pristine ecology of this region, leading to environmental degradation. Also, the practice of unregulated shifting cultivation (jhooming), bamboo flowering, biological invasions and anthropogenic perturbations to biodiversity exacerbate the gloomy situation. Instead of a plethora of policies, the TEK of NE people may be integrated with modern scientific knowledge in order to conserve the environment which is the strong pillar for socio-economic sector here. The aforesaid approach can be practiced in NE India through the broad implementation and extension of agroforestry practices. Further, case studies on Apatanis, ethnomedicinal plants use by indigenous tribal groups and sacred forests are particularly relevant in the context of conservation of environmental health in totality while addressing the socioeconomic impact as well. In context with the prevailing scenarios in this region, we developed an eco-sustainable model for natural resource management through agroforestry practices in order to uplift the social as well as environmental framework.

  16. Adolescent substance-use assessment: methodological issues in the use of the Adolescent Drug Abuse Diagnosis (ADAD). (United States)

    Chinet, Léonie; Plancherel, Bernard; Bolognini, Monique; Holzer, Laurent; Halfon, Olivier


    During the past twenty years, various instruments have been developed for the assessment of substance use in adolescents, mainly in the United States. However, few of them have been adapted to, and validated in, French-speaking populations. Consequently, although increasing alcohol and drug use among teenagers has become a major concern, the various health and social programs developed in response to this specific problem have received little attention with regard to follow-up and outcome assessment. A standardized multidimensional assessment instrument adapted for adolescents is needed to assess the individual needs of adolescents and assign them to the most appropriate treatment setting, to provide a single measurement within and across health and social systems, and to conduct treatment outcome evaluations. Moreover, having an available instrument makes it possible to develop longitudinal and transcultural research studies. For this reason, a French version of the Adolescent Drug Abuse Diagnosis (ADAD) was developed and validated at the University Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Clinic in Lausanne, Switzerland. This article aims to discuss the methodological issues that we faced when using the ADAD instrument in a 4-year longitudinal study including adolescent substance users. Methodological aspects relating to the content and format of the instrument, the assessment administration and the statistical analyses are discussed.

  17. Special Issue on Innovation through Open Data: A Review of the State-of-the-Art and an Emerging Research Agenda: Guest Editors’ Introduction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zuiderwijk, A.M.G.; Helbig, N.; Gil-García, J.R.; Janssen, M.F.W.H.A.


    For decades good governance scholarship has focused attention on the importance of government openness [26], [34]. Since the 1960s, Freedom of Information (FOI) legislation has formed the backbone of institutional support for opening information and documents [76] and participatory processes [4], [7

  18. System Noise Assessment of Blended-Wing-Body Aircraft With Open Rotor Propulsion (United States)

    Guo, Yueping; Thomas, Russell H.


    An aircraft system noise study is presented for the Blended-Wing-Body (BWB) aircraft concept with three open rotor engines mounted on the upper surface of the airframe. It is shown that for such an aircraft, the cumulative Effective Perceived Noise Level (EPNL) is about 24 dB below the current aircraft noise regulations of Stage 4. While this makes the design acoustically viable in meeting the regulatory requirements, even with the consideration of more stringent noise regulations of a possible Stage 5 in the next decade or so, the design will likely meet stiff competitions from aircraft with turbofan engines. It is shown that the noise levels of the BWB design are held up by the inherently high noise levels of the open rotor engines and the limitation on the shielding benefit due to the practical design constraint on the engine location. Furthermore, it is shown that the BWB design has high levels of noise from the main landing gear, due to their exposure to high speed flow at the junction between the center body and outer wing. These are also the reasons why this baseline BWB design does not meet the NASA N+2 noise goal of 42 dB below Stage 4. To identify approaches that may further reduce noise, parametric studies are also presented, including variations in engine location, vertical tail and elevon variations, and airframe surface acoustic liner treatment effect. These have the potential to further reduce noise but they are only at the conceptual stage.

  19. Characterization and pollution potential assessment of Tunceli, Turkey municipal solid waste open dumping site leachates. (United States)

    Demirbilek, Deniz; Öztüfekçi Önal, Ayten; Demir, Veysel; Uslu, Gulsad; Arslanoglu-Isık, Hilal


    Environmental monitoring of leachate quality from an open municipal solid waste dumping site in Tunceli, Turkey was studied in this research. The most commonly examined pollution parameters were determined on a seasonal basis. The annual average 5-day biological oxygen demand (BOD₅) and chemical oxygen demand (COD) values of station points were measured as 70 and 425 mg/L, respectively, and also the average BOD₅/COD ratio (a measure of biodegradability) was calculated as 0.20. The low ratio of biodegradability and slightly alkaline pH values in the leachate samples indicated that the site was characterized by methanogenic conditions. The mean ammonium-nitrogen (NH4 (+)-N) and corresponding phosphate (orthophosphate) values were assayed as 70 and 11 mg/L, respectively. The average solids content in the leachates was measured as 4,681 mg/L (total solids) and 144 mg/L (suspended solids). Very low concentrations of iron, manganese, copper, and zinc in the leachate samples were found and the concentration of cadmium was measured below detection limits. Excessive amount of nutrients and high organic and inorganic pollutant content in the leachates pose serious pollution potential to the environment. Since no drainage system or bio treatment exists in this open dumping site, high permeability of natural soil at the site and in the surrounding area and very fractured and crackled rocks under natural soil are indicators of high groundwater pollution potential in this site.

  20. A viscoelastic Unitary Crack-Opening strain tensor for crack width assessment in fractured concrete structures (United States)

    Sciumè, Giuseppe; Benboudjema, Farid


    A post-processing technique which allows computing crack width in concrete is proposed for a viscoelastic damage model. Concrete creep is modeled by means of a Kelvin-Voight cell while the damage model is that of Mazars in its local form. Due to the local damage approach, the constitutive model is regularized with respect to finite element mesh to avoid mesh dependency in the computed solution (regularization is based on fracture energy). The presented method is an extension to viscoelasticity of the approach proposed by Matallah et al. (Int. J. Numer. Anal. Methods Geomech. 34(15):1615-1633, 2010) for a purely elastic damage model. The viscoelastic Unitary Crack-Opening (UCO) strain tensor is computed accounting for evolution with time of surplus of stress related to damage; this stress is obtained from decomposition of the effective stress tensor. From UCO the normal crack width is then derived accounting for finite element characteristic length in the direction orthogonal to crack. This extension is quite natural and allows for accounting of creep impact on opening/closing of cracks in time dependent problems. A graphical interpretation of the viscoelastic UCO using Mohr's circles is proposed and application cases together with a theoretical validation are presented to show physical consistency of computed viscoelastic UCO.

  1. Portfolios, the Pied Piper of Teacher Certification Assessments: Legal and Psychometric Issues

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Judy R. Wilkerson


    Full Text Available Since about 90% of schools, colleges, and departments of education are currently using portfolios of one form or another as decision-making tools for standards-based decisions regarding certification or licensure (as well as NCATE accreditation, it is appropriate to explore the legal and psychometric aspects of this assessment device. The authors demonstrate that portfolios being used in a high-stakes context are technically testing devices and therefore need to meet psychometric standards of validity, reliability, fairness, and absence of bias. These standards, along with federal law, form the cornerstone for legal challenges to high-stakes decisions when students are denied a diploma or license based on the results of the assessment. The conclusion includes a list of requirements and caveats for using portfolios for graduation and certification decisions in a standards-based environment that help institutions reduce exposure to potential litigation.

  2. A reappraisal of some Cigar Lake issues of importance to performance assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Smellie, J. [Conterra AB (Sweden); Karlsson, Fred [Swedish Nucelear Fuel and Waste Management Co., Stockholm (Sweden)


    The AECL/SKB Cigar Lake Analogue Study was published in 1994. Data from this study, relevant for repository performance assessments, have been reappraised in the light of greater exposure to analogue studies and the development of more realistic models used in performance assessment. Several of the areas proved to have been adequately addressed in the original study, but one of the areas that particularly benefited from the renewed analysis concerned radiolysis. In this case a model for radiolysis was developed and tested, significantly narrowing the gap between calculated and predicted oxidant production. Considerable progress was also made in understanding and modelling the initial formation of the deposit under hydrothermal conditions, and using this conceptual model to evaluate the changes that have subsequently occurred under `ambient` repository conditions over geological timescales. Moreover, the physical properties of clay as a potential buffer to groundwater flow and radionuclide migration were addressed with some success. 99 refs.

  3. Assessment of single-shell tank residual-liquid issues at Hanford Site, Washington

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Murthy, K.S.; Stout, L.A.; Napier, B.A.; Reisenauer, A.E.; Landstrom, D.K.


    This report provides an assessment of the overall effectiveness and implications of jet pumping the interstitial liquids (IL) from single-shell tanks at Hanford. The jet-pumping program, currently in progress at Hanford, involves the planned removal of IL contained in 89 of the 149 single-shell tanks and its transfer to double-shell tanks after volume reduction by evaporation. The purpose of this report is to estimate the public and worker doses associated with (1) terminating pumping immediately, (2) pumping to a 100,000-gal limit per tank, (3) pumping to a 50,000-gal limit per tank, and (4) pumping to the maximum practical liquid removal level of 30,000 gal. Assessment of the cost-effectiveness of these various levels of pumping in minimizing any undue health and safety risks to the public or worker is also presented.

  4. Portfolios, the Pied Piper of Teacher Certification Assessments: Legal and Psychometric Issues


    Judy R. Wilkerson; William Steve Lang


    Since about 90% of schools, colleges, and departments of education are currently using portfolios of one form or another as decision-making tools for standards-based decisions regarding certification or licensure (as well as NCATE accreditation), it is appropriate to explore the legal and psychometric aspects of this assessment device. The authors demonstrate that portfolios being used in a high-stakes context are technically testing devices and therefore need to meet psychometric standards o...

  5. An instrument for broadened risk assessment in antenatal health care including non-medical issues


    Amber Amanda Vos; Mieke J van Veen; Erwin Birnie; Semiha Denktas; Eric AP Steegers; Bonsel, Gouke J


    Introduction: Growing evidence on the risk contributing role of non-medical factors on pregnancy outcomes urged for a new approach in early antenatal risk selection. The evidence invites to more integration, in particular between the clinical working area and the public health domain. We developed a non-invasive, standardized instrument for comprehensive antenatal risk assessment. The current study presents the application-oriented development of a risk screening instrument for early antenata...

  6. Review of GMO safety assessment studies: glyphosate residues in Roundup Ready crops is an ignored issue



    Published version, also available at Background Genetically modified glyphosate-tolerant cultivar varieties have been a commercial success widely known as Roundup Ready plants. As new glyphosate-tolerant varieties are introduced to satisfy agriculture demand, it is relevant to review the scientific evidence that documents the quality and safety of such biotechnology. Assessments of genetically modified glyphosate-tolerant plants are partly ba...

  7. New concepts, old known issues - the DSM-5 and Internet Gaming Disorder and its assessment [forthcoming


    Pontes, HM; Griffiths, MD


    Background: Following the growing concern about 'internet gaming addiction', the American Psychiatric Association (APA) and numerous scholars have suggested the need for unification and consensus for the assessment of gaming addiction, which is now possible given the recent formal recognition of 'internet gaming disorder' (IGD) by the APA since its inclusion in the DSM-5. Aims: In light of this, the aim of this chapter is to present the main findings concerning the development of the Internet...

  8. The Water Risks of Hydraulic Fracturing (Fracking): Key Issues from the New California Assessment (United States)

    Gleick, P. H.


    A key component of the Water-Energy Nexus is the effort over the past decade or so to quantify the volumes and form of water required for the energy fuel cycle from extraction to generation to waste disposal. The vast majority of the effort in this area has focused on the water needs of electricity generation, but other fuel-cycle components also entail significant water demands and threats to water quality. Recent work for the State of California (managed by the California Council on Science and Technology - CCST) has produced a new state-of-the-art assessment of a range of potential water risks associated with hydraulic fracturing and related oil and gas extraction, including volumetric water demands, methods of disposal of produced water, and aquifer contamination. For example, this assessment produced new information on the disposal of produced water in surface percolation pits and the potential for contamination of local groundwater (see Figure). Understanding these risks raises questions about current production and future plans to expand production, as well as tools used by state and federal agencies to manage these risks. This talk will summarize the science behind the CCST assessment and related policy recommendations for both water and energy managers.

  9. Assessing the Impact of Security Behavior on the Awareness of Open-Source Intelligence: A Quantitative Study of IT Knowledge Workers (United States)

    Daniels, Daniel B., III


    There is a lack of literature linking end-user behavior to the availability of open-source intelligence (OSINT). Most OSINT literature has been focused on the use and assessment of open-source intelligence, not the proliferation of personally or organizationally identifiable information (PII/OII). Additionally, information security studies have…

  10. Novel data visualizations of X-ray data for aviation security applications using the Open Threat Assessment Platform (OTAP) (United States)

    Gittinger, Jaxon M.; Jimenez, Edward S.; Holswade, Erica A.; Nunna, Rahul S.


    This work will demonstrate the implementation of a traditional and non-traditional visualization of x-ray images for aviation security applications that will be feasible with open system architecture initiatives such as the Open Threat Assessment Platform (OTAP). Anomalies of interest to aviation security are fluid, where characteristic signals of anomalies of interest can evolve rapidly. OTAP is a limited scope open architecture baggage screening prototype that intends to allow 3rd-party vendors to develop and easily implement, integrate, and deploy detection algorithms and specialized hardware on a field deployable screening technology [13]. In this study, stereoscopic images were created using an unmodified, field-deployed system and rendered on the Oculus Rift, a commercial virtual reality video gaming headset. The example described in this work is not dependent on the Oculus Rift, and is possible using any comparable hardware configuration capable of rendering stereoscopic images. The depth information provided from viewing the images will aid in the detection of characteristic signals from anomalies of interest. If successful, OTAP has the potential to allow for aviation security to become more fluid in its adaptation to the evolution of anomalies of interest. This work demonstrates one example that is easily implemented using the OTAP platform, that could lead to the future generation of ATR algorithms and data visualization approaches.

  11. Assessment of metal pollution in soils from a former Havana (Cuba) solid waste open dump. (United States)

    Díaz Rizo, O; Hernández Merlo, M; Echeverría Castillo, F; Arado López, J O


    Concentrations of cobalt, nickel, cooper, zinc and lead in the top-soils (0-10 cm) from a former Havana solid waste open dump were estimated by X-ray fluorescence analysis. The mean metal contents in the dump topsoil samples (in mg kg(-1): 8.4 ± 2.7 for cobalt, 50 ± 27 for nickel, 252 ± 80 for copper, 489 ± 230 for zinc and 276 ± 140 for lead) were compared with mean concentrations from Havana urban soils and from other solid waste disposals around the world. The comparison with Dutch soil quality guidelines showed a serious cooper contamination and a slight contamination with the rest of determined metals. The values of the integrated pollution index (mean index = 3.5) indicated that dump soils are highly contaminated by metals, and the enrichment index values shows that metal concentrations on the studied locations are above the permissible levels for urban agriculture.

  12. Final Environmental Assessment Proposed Opening of Bogue Chitto National Wildlife Refuge to Upland Game Hunting, Migratory Waterfowl Hunting, Big Game Hunting and Sport and Commercial Fishing (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — 1985 Final Environmental Assessment Proposed Opening of Bogue Chitto National Wildlife Refuge to Upland Game Hunting, Migratory Waterfoul Hunting, Big Game Hunting...

  13. Economic Issues in the Use of Office Spirometry for Lung Health Assessment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Murray Krahn


    Full Text Available The National Lung Health Education Program (United States has recently recommended using office spirometry to screen for subclinical lung disease in adult smokers. No published studies evaluate the economic consequences of this recommendation. This review article outlines the issues that must be considered when evaluating the costs and health benefits of office spirometry. Much of the available data on the effectiveness of screening is from studies that included smoking cessation interventions, making it difficult to determine the effects of screening alone. The sensitivity and specificity of screening spirometry are not known, but may not be important in the economic model, because even false positive test results are beneficial if they lead to smoking cessation. Costs to be considered include those of spirometry itself, of implementing and maintaining screening and smoking cessation programs, and of their consequences, ie, reduced morbidity (lower short term health care costs and mortality (perhaps higher long term health care costs. Despite these unique challenges, data are available to perform economic analyses regarding screening spirometry. Such analyses should play a role in future clinical policy making. Even modest quit rates attributable to screening spirometry may result in highly favourable cost effectiveness ratios.

  14. Level of analysis issues in assessing treatment beliefs in substance abuse clinics. (United States)

    Mitchelson, Jacqueline K; Dickson, Marcus W; Arfken, Cynthia L; Agius, Elizabeth


    The current study applies the growing literature in the organizational sciences regarding levels of analysis issues to the analysis of substance abuse treatment beliefs. Research on clinicians' beliefs in substance abuse treatment is often based on the assumption that the beliefs are sufficiently shared by clinicians within a clinic and sufficiently vary across clinics that they can be treated as a group-level phenomenon. Further, efforts to introduce new innovations are often focused at the group or clinic level without testing this assumption, which can lead to failure to adopt or to successfully implement the innovation. We tested the assumption of sharedness by examining if there was sufficient agreement about treatment beliefs within clinics, within groups of clinics or within groups of clinicians to justify treating these aggregations as meaningful groups. Using three statistical approaches to examining level of analysis (Within and Between Analysis (WABA I), Intraclass Correlation Coefficients (ICC(1)), and r(wg)), we found that variability in treatment beliefs largely occurred at the individual rather than at the tested aggregate levels of analysis. These findings serve as an example of the importance of testing the assumption of shared perceptions in future research.

  15. Level of analysis issues in assessing treatment beliefs in substance abuse clinics (United States)

    Mitchelson, Jacqueline K.; Dickson, Marcus W.; Arfken, Cynthia L.; Agius, Elizabeth


    The current study applies the growing literature in the organizational sciences regarding levels of analysis issues to the analysis of substance abuse treatment beliefs. Research on clinicians' beliefs in substance abuse treatment is often based on the assumption that the beliefs are sufficiently shared by clinicians within a clinic and sufficiently vary across clinics that they can be treated as a group-level phenomenon. Further, efforts to introduce new innovations are often focused at the group or clinic level without testing this assumption, which can lead to failure to adopt or to successfully implement the innovation. We tested the assumption of sharedness by examining if there was sufficient agreement about treatment beliefs within clinics, within groups of clinics or within groups of clinicians to justify treating these aggregations as meaningful groups. Using three statistical approaches to examining level of analysis (Within and Between Analysis (WABA I), Intraclass Correlation Coefficients (ICC(1)), and rwg), we found that variability in treatment beliefs largely occurred at the individual rather than at the tested aggregate levels of analysis. These findings serve as an example of the importance of testing the assumption of shared perceptions in future research. PMID:17570604

  16. Assessment of artificial radionuclides issued from French nuclear bomb testing at Mururoa (French Polynesia)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Martin, J.-M.; Thomas, A.J. (Ecole Normale Superieure, Montrouge (France). Inst. de Biogeochimie Marine); Charrier, B.; Cousteau, J.-Y.; Sarano, F. (Fondation Cousteau, Paris (France))


    The Mururoa lagoon was sampled immediately after a nuclear test. {sup 131}I was found in sediments and plankton. Official French sources explain its occurrence by an accidental release during a control operation. Long-lived nuclides ({sup 137}Cs, Pu isotopes, etc) are ascribed to past local atmospheric tests. Their total flux to the Pacific Ocean is markedly low as compared to discharges by major reprocessing plants. Radionuclides short-term impact on Pacific ecosystems and man is insignificant. Long-term processes could not be assessed. (author).

  17. Environmental impact assessment and socio political issues of nuclear waste management; Ydinjaetehuollon ympaeristoevaikutusten arviointi ja sosiopoliittiset kysymykset

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Harmaajaervi, I.; Tolsa, H. [VTT Communities and Infrastructure, Espoo (Finland). Urban Planning; Vuori, S. [VTT Energy, Espoo (Finland). Nuclear Energy; Litmanen, T. [Jyvaeskylae Univ. (Finland)


    The study is a part of the Publicly Administrated Nuclear Waste Management Research Programme (JYT2) which was carried out in 1994-1996. The principal goal of the research programme has been to provide the authorities with information and research results relevant for the safety of nuclear waste management in order to support the various activities of the authorities. The main emphasis of the research programme focuses on the disposal of spent fuel. In addition to nuclear waste research in the field of natural sciences and technology, the research program- me has focused mostly on societal issues associated with nuclear waste disposal facilities and on the non-radiological environmental effects in the environs of the disposal site. Some of the local effects are already revealed in the research phase, before any final decisions are made as to the selection of the disposal site. The study has focused primarily on local and regional issues. The statutory requirement to conduct environ- mental impact assessment (EIA) chiefly concerns those who are responsible for waste management, but the authorities also need to acquire systematic information in the field to support developing requirements for the content and scope of EIA procedure and preparedness to check the assessments made. This is a report of the first parts of the study in 1994-1995. The report deals with the subject matter generally based on earlier studies in Finland and other countries. The results of the study will be reported later. 101 refs.

  18. A Short Assessment of Select Remediation Issues at the Russian Research Center-Kurchatov Institute, Moscow, Russia

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gephart, Roy E.


    At the invitation of the National Academies, Roy Gephart traveled to Russia with an eight-member U.S. team during June, 2008 to participate in a workshop hosted by the National Academies and the Russian Academy of Sciences on radiation contamination and remediation issues in the former Soviet Union. Cleanup problems were assessed by the American participants for six Russian sites: Kurchatov Institute, Lakes 10 and 11 at Mayak, Andreev Bay, Krasnokamensk Mining Enterprise (Siberia), Almaz Mining Enterprise (North Caucasus), and one site for testing peaceful nuclear explosions. Roy lead the Russian Research Center-Kurchatov Institute review session and wrote an assessment of key cleanup issues. Kurchatov is the leading institute in the Former Soviet Union devoted to military and civilian nuclear programs. Founded in 1943 in the outskirts of Moscow, this 100 hectare site of nearly undeveloped, prime real estate is now surrounded by densely populated urban and business districts. Today there are growing concerns over the public safety and environmental security of the site resulting from increasingly obsolete nuclear facilities and a legacy of inadequate waste management practices that resulted in contaminant releases and challenging remediation problems. In addition, there is growing concern over the presence of nuclear facilities within urban areas creating potential targets for terrorist attacks.

  19. Costs without benefits? Methodological issues in assessing costs, benefits and effectiveness of water protection policies. Paper

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Walz, R.; Schleich, J.


    In the last few years, the conditions for extending environmental policy in general and policy dealing with the prevention of water pollution in particular have undergone extensive changes. On the one hand, there has been indisputable considerable success in preventing water pollution which has led to less direct pressure for policy action. On the other hand, the rising sewage levies and the lower political priority assigned in general to environmental policy documented in, e. g. public opinion surveys, has led to water pollution control policy facing very different pressures of justification: more efficient use of funds, improved planning processes, proof of the achievable benefit, but also stopping the increase in levies or not hindering economic development, these or similar slogans are the objections brought against water pollution control. Regardless of how unambiguous these terms appear when used as slogans in this way, they become diffuse and unclear if regarded more closely. This paper therefore attempts to reveal the reasons for possible misunderstandings and misinterpretations on the one hand and, on the other, to reveal the basic problems and uncertainties which are necessarily linked with an assessment of costs and benefits. In order to do this, three areas are examined: level of actors and analysis, evaluation methods and assessment of costs and benefits. (orig.)

  20. Risk assessment for honey bees and pesticides--recent developments and 'new issues'. (United States)

    Thompson, Helen M


    In 2008, major areas of discussion at the ICPBR Bee Protection Group meeting were the development of a honey bee risk assessment scheme for systemic pesticides and revision of the test guidelines for semi-field and field studies. The risk assessment scheme for systemic pesticides is based on analysis of conditions for exposure of bees to residues. These are based on a stepwise approach, starting with simple calculations based on existing data in dossiers and progressing to higher-tier semi-field and field studies (the guidelines for these have been modified in line with this). The proposed scheme has been tested with data packages of high- and low-risk PPPs. A future area of interest for the group may be the risks posed by guttation fluid containing systemic pesticides. A recent paper on 'Translocation of neonicotinoid insecticides from coated seeds to seedling guttation drops: a novel way of intoxication for bees' has focused significant interest on the possible risks posed by the presence of residues of systemic pesticides in guttation fluid to water-collecting honey bees. The occurrence of guttation and the presence of pesticide residues in the fluid are discussed, together with remaining questions that will need to be addressed in answering whether such a route of exposure may pose a risk to honey bees.

  1. Vojany Station reconstruction, repowering and expansion assessment: Options, issues and opportunities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Coe, W.F. [Southern Electric International, Inc., Atlanta, GA (United States); Griswold, G.H.; Peyton, J.C. [Southern Company Services, Inc., Birmingham, AL (United States)


    Recent European community and state specific environmental guideline, legislative, and regulatory activities have led power producers to assess their currently installed generation technologies with regard to clean air compliance strategies. For the application to older generation facilities, the prudence of linking facility rehabilitation with the addition of environmental control systems to repowering options is warranted. Similarly, ongoing privatization efforts emphasize the necessity for sound economic decisions of site specific technological applications that consider maintaining or enhancing thermal efficiencies. Southern Electric International (SEI) has conducted such a feasibility study assessment evaluating the reconstruction, repowering and possible expansion of the Slovensky Energeticky Podnik (SEP) 1320 MWe Vojany Station in the Republic of Slovakia. Alternatives included such technologies as atmospheric fluid bed combustion, furnace and duct sorbent injection, low NOx burners, gas re-burn, selective catalytic reduction, selective non-catalytic reduction, state of the art precipitators and baghouses, wet and dry flue gas desulfurization systems and repowering technologies. In addition, new, turn of the century environmentally plausible and efficient electric power technologies were addressed.

  2. Cyberbullying: a systematic review of research, its prevalence and assessment issues in Spanish studies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Izabela Zych


    Full Text Available Research on cyberbullying started at the beginning of the 21st century and the number of studies on the topic is increasing very rapidly. Nevertheless, the criteria used to define the phenomenon and evaluation strategies are still under debate. Therefore, it is still difficult to compare the findings among the studies or to describe their prevalence in different geographic areas or time points. Thus, the current systematic review has been conducted with the objective of describing the studies on the phenomenon in Spain taking into account its different definitions and evaluation strategies in relation to its prevalence. After conducting systematic searches and applying the inclusion criteria, 29 articles reporting the results of 21 different studies were included. It was found that the number of studies on the topic in Spain is growing and that most of the definitions include the criteria of repetition, intention, and power imbalance. It was also found that timeframes and cut-off points varied greatly among the studies. All the studies used self-reports with one-item or multi-item instruments. The prevalence also varied depending on the evaluation strategies and when assessed with multi-item instruments it was about twice as high as when assessed with one-item instruments. It is suggested that specific instruments should be chosen depending on the research questions posed in each investigation and that it could be useful to unify the criteria for further advancement of the field.

  3. Critical Assessment of Time-Dependent Density Functional Theory for Excited States of Open-Shell Systems: II. Doublet-Quartet Transitions. (United States)

    Li, Zhendong; Liu, Wenjian


    Compared with closed-shell systems, open-shell systems place three additional challenges to time-dependent density functional theory (TD-DFT) for electronically excited states: (a) the spin-contamination problem is a serious issue; (b) the exchange-correlation (XC) kernel may be numerically instable; and (c) the single-determinant description of open-shell ground states readily becomes energetically instable. Confined to flip-up single excitations, the spin-contamination problem can largely be avoided by using the spin-flip TD-DFT (SF-TD-DFT) formalism, provided that a noncollinear XC kernel is employed. As for the numerical instabilities associated with such a kernel, only an ad hoc scheme has been proposed so far, viz., the ALDA0 kernel, which amounts to setting the divergent components (arising from density gradients and kinetic energy density) simply to zero. The ground-state instability problem can effectively be avoided by introducing the Tamm-Dancoff approximation (TDA) to TD-DFT. Therefore, on a general basis, the SF-TDA/ALDA0 Ansatz is so far the only promising means within the TD-DFT framework for flip-up single excitations of open-shell systems. To assess systematically the performance of SF-TDA/ALDA0, in total 61 low-lying quartet excited states of the benchmark set of 11 small radicals [J. Chem. Theory Comput. 2016, 12, 238] are investigated with various XC functionals. Taking the MRCISD+Q (multireference configuration interaction with singles and doubles plus the Davidson correction) results as benchmark, it is found that the mean absolute errors of SF-TDA/ALDA0 with the SAOP (statistical averaging of model orbital potentials), global hybrid, and range-separated hybrid functionals are in the range of 0.2-0.4 eV. This is in line not only with the typical accuracy of TD-DFT for singlet and triplet excited states of closed-shell systems but also with the gross accuracy of spin-adapted TD-DFT for spin-conserving excited states of open-shell systems.

  4. Assessing antiretroviral adherence via electronic drug monitoring and self-report: an examination of key methodological issues. (United States)

    Pearson, Cynthia R; Simoni, Jane M; Hoff, Peter; Kurth, Ann E; Martin, Diane P


    We explored methodological issues related to antiretroviral adherence assessment, using 6 months of data collected in a completed intervention trial involving 136 low-income HIV-positive outpatients in the Bronx, NY. Findings suggest that operationalizing adherence as a continuous (versus dichotomous) variable and averaging adherence estimates over multiple assessment points (versus using only one) explains greater variance in HIV-1 RNA viral load (VL). Self-reported estimates provided during a phone interview accounted for similar variance in VL as EDM estimates (R (2) = .17 phone versus .18 EDM). Self-reported adherence was not associated with a standard social desirability measure, and no difference in the accuracy of self-report adherence was observed for assessment periods of 1-3 days. Self-reported poor adherence was more closely associated with EDM adherence estimates than self-reported moderate and high adherence. On average across assessment points, fewer than 4% of participants who reported taking a dose of an incorrect amount of medication.

  5. Weight Assessment for Fuselage Shielding on Aircraft With Open-Rotor Engines and Composite Blade Loss (United States)

    Carney, Kelly; Pereira, Michael; Kohlman, Lee; Goldberg, Robert; Envia, Edmane; Lawrence, Charles; Roberts, Gary; Emmerling, William


    The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has been engaged in discussions with airframe and engine manufacturers concerning regulations that would apply to new technology fuel efficient "openrotor" engines. Existing regulations for the engines and airframe did not envision features of these engines that include eliminating the fan blade containment systems and including two rows of counter-rotating blades. Damage to the airframe from a failed blade could potentially be catastrophic. Therefore the feasibility of using aircraft fuselage shielding was investigated. In order to establish the feasibility of this shielding, a study was conducted to provide an estimate for the fuselage shielding weight required to provide protection from an open-rotor blade loss. This estimate was generated using a two-step procedure. First, a trajectory analysis was performed to determine the blade orientation and velocity at the point of impact with the fuselage. The trajectory analysis also showed that a blade dispersion angle of 3deg bounded the probable dispersion pattern and so was used for the weight estimate. Next, a finite element impact analysis was performed to determine the required shielding thickness to prevent fuselage penetration. The impact analysis was conducted using an FAA-provided composite blade geometry. The fuselage geometry was based on a medium-sized passenger composite airframe. In the analysis, both the blade and fuselage were assumed to be constructed from a T700S/PR520 triaxially-braided composite architecture. Sufficient test data on T700S/PR520 is available to enable reliable analysis, and also demonstrate its good impact resistance properties. This system was also used in modeling the surrogate blade. The estimated additional weight required for fuselage shielding for a wing- mounted counterrotating open-rotor blade is 236 lb per aircraft. This estimate is based on the shielding material serving the dual use of shielding and fuselage structure. If the

  6. Radiocarbon-based impact assessment of open biomass burning on regional carbonaceous aerosols in North China

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zong, Zheng [Key Laboratory of Coastal Environmental Processes and Ecological Remediation, Yantai Institute of Coastal Zone Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Yantai 264003 (China); Graduate University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100039 (China); Chen, Yingjun, E-mail: [Key Laboratory of Coastal Environmental Processes and Ecological Remediation, Yantai Institute of Coastal Zone Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Yantai 264003 (China); Tian, Chongguo, E-mail: [Key Laboratory of Coastal Environmental Processes and Ecological Remediation, Yantai Institute of Coastal Zone Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Yantai 264003 (China); Fang, Yin [Key Laboratory of Coastal Environmental Processes and Ecological Remediation, Yantai Institute of Coastal Zone Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Yantai 264003 (China); Wang, Xiaoping [State Key Laboratory of Organic Geochemistry, Guangzhou Institute of Geochemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou 510640 (China); Graduate University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100039 (China); Huang, Guopei; Zhang, Fan [Key Laboratory of Coastal Environmental Processes and Ecological Remediation, Yantai Institute of Coastal Zone Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Yantai 264003 (China); Li, Jun; Zhang, Gan [State Key Laboratory of Organic Geochemistry, Guangzhou Institute of Geochemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou 510640 (China)


    Samples of total suspended particulates (TSPs) and fine particulate matter (PM{sub 2.5}) were collected from 29th May to 1st July, 2013 at a regional background site in Bohai Rim, North China. Mass concentrations of particulate matter and carbonaceous species showed a total of 50% and 97% of the measured TSP and PM{sub 2.5} levels exceeded the first grade national standard of China, respectively. Daily concentrations of organic carbon (OC) and elemental carbon (EC) were detected 7.3 and 2.5 μg m{sup −3} in TSP and 5.2 and 2.0 μg m{sup −3} in PM{sub 2.5}, which accounted 5.8% and 2.0% of TSP while 5.6% and 2.2% for PM{sub 2.5}, respectively. The concentrations of OC, EC, TSP and PM{sub 2.5} were observed higher in the day time than those in the night time. The observations were associated with the emission variations from anthropogenic activities. Two merged samples representing from south and north source areas were selected for radiocarbon analysis. The radiocarbon measurements showed 74% of water-insoluble OC (WINSOC) and 59% of EC in PM{sub 2.5} derived from biomass burning and biogenic sources when the air masses were from south region, and 63% and 48% for the air masses from north, respectively. Combined with backward trajectories and daily burned area, open burning of agricultural wastes was found to be predominating, which was confirmed by the potential source contribution function (PSCF). - Highlights: • PM{sub 2.5} and TSP samples collected at Yellow River Delta were analyzed for OC and EC. • OC, EC, TSP and PM{sub 2.5} concentrations were higher in daytime than in nighttime. • Radiocarbon ({sup 14}C) tracer, backward trajectories, and fire counts were used for the analysis. • Agricultural waste open burning was a main contributor to summer PM{sub 2.5}, OC and EC.

  7. Qualitative Risk Assessment for an LNG Refueling Station and Review of Relevant Safety Issues

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Siu, N.; Herring, J.S.; Cadwallader, L.; Reece, W.; Byers, J.


    This report is a qualitative assessment of the public and worker risk involved with the operation of a liquefied natural gas (LNG) vehicle refueling facility. This study includes facility maintenance and operations, tank truck deliveries, and end-use vehicle fueling; it does not treat the risks of LNG vehicles on roadways. Accident initiating events are identified by using a Master Logic Diagram, a Failure Modes and Effects Analysis, and historical operating experiences. The event trees were drawn to depict possible sequences of mitigating events following the initiating events. The phenomenology of LNG and other vehicle fuels is discussed to characterize the hazard posed by LNG usage. Based on the risk modeling and analysis, recommendations are given to improve the safety of LNG refueling stations in the areas of procedures and training, station design, and the dissemination of ``best practice`` information throughout the LNG community.

  8. Neuropsychological issues in the assessment of refugees and victims of mass violence. (United States)

    Weinstein, C S; Fucetola, R; Mollica, R


    Brain injury, stressor severity, depression, premorbid vulnerabilities, and PTSD are frequently intertwined in trauma populations. This interaction is further complicated when the neuropsychologist evaluates refugees from other cultures. In addition, the observed psychiatric symptoms reported in refugees and victims of mass violence may in fact not be the primary features of PTSD and depression but psychiatric symptoms secondary to the effects of traumatic brain injury. This paper reviews the occurrence of starvation, torture, beatings, imprisonment, and other head injury experiences in refugee and POW populations to alert treators to the presence of chronic and persistent neuropsychiatric morbidity, with implications for psychosocial adjustment. The concept of fixed neural loss may also interact with environmental and emotional stresses, and a model of neuropsychological abnormalities triggered by traumatic events and influenced by subsequent stress will also be considered. Neuropsychologists working with refugees play an important role in assessing the possibility of traumatic brain injury with tools that are relatively culture-fair.

  9. Interim qualitative risk assessment for an LNG refueling station and review of relevant safety issues

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Siu, N.; Herring, S.; Cadwallader, L.; Reece, W.; Byers, J.


    This report is a qualitative assessment of the public and worker risk involved with the operation of a liquefied natural (LNG) vehicle refueling facility. This study includes facility maintenance and operations, tanker truck delivers and end-use vehicle fueling; it does not treat the risks of LNG vehicles on roadways. Accident initiating events are identified by using a Master Logic Diagram, a Failure Modes and Effects analysis and historical operating experiences. The event trees were drawn to depict possible sequences of mitigating events following the initiating events. The phenomenology of LNG and other vehicle fuels is discussed to characterize the hazard posed by LNG usage. Based on the risk modeling and analysis, recommendations are given to improve the safety of LNG refueling stations in the areas of procedures and training, station design, and the dissemination of best practice information throughout the LNG community.

  10. Ecosystem valuation: a sequential decision support system and quality assessment issues. (United States)

    Turner, R Kerry; Morse-Jones, Sian; Fisher, Brendan


    Understanding the economic value of nature and the services it provides to humanity has become increasingly important for local, national, and global policy and decision making. It has become obvious that quantifying and integrating these services into decision making will be crucial for sustainable development. Problems arise in that it is difficult to obtain meaningful values for the goods and services that ecosystems provide and for which there is no formal market. A wide range of ecosystem services fall into this category. Additional problems arise when economic methods are applied inappropriately and when the importance of ecosystem maintenance for human welfare is underestimated. In this article we identify a place for monetary valuation within the pluralistic approach supported by ecological economics and assess progress to date in the application of environmental valuation to ecosystem service provision. We first review definitions of ecosystem services in order to make an operational link to valuation methods. We then discuss the spatially explicit nature of ecosystem services provision and benefits capture. We highlight the importance of valuing marginal changes and the role for macroscale valuation, nonlinearities in service benefits, and the significance of nonconvexities (threshold effects). We also review guidance on valuation studies quality assurance, and discuss the problems inherent in the methodology as exposed by the findings of behavioral economics, as well as with benefits transfer--the most common way valuation studies are applied in the policy process. We argue for a sequential decision support system that can lead to a more integrated and rigorous approach to environmental valuation and biophysical measurement of ecosystem services. This system itself then needs to be encompassed within a more comprehensive multicriteria assessment dialogue and process.

  11. An instrument for broadened risk assessment in antenatal health care including non-medical issues

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amber Amanda Vos


    Full Text Available Introduction: Growing evidence on the risk contributing role of non-medical factors on pregnancy outcomes urged for a new approach in early antenatal risk selection. The evidence invites to more integration, in particular between the clinical working area and the public health domain. We developed a non-invasive, standardized instrument for comprehensive antenatal risk assessment. The current study presents the application-oriented development of a risk screening instrument for early antenatal detection of risk factors and tailored prevention in an integrated care setting.Methods: A review of published instruments complemented with evidence from cohort studies. Selection and standardization of risk factors associated with small for gestational age, preterm birth, congenital anomalies and perinatal mortality. Risk factors were weighted to obtain a cumulative risk score. Responses were then connected to corresponding care pathways. A cumulative risk threshold was defined, which can be adapted to the population and the availability of preventive facilities. A score above the threshold implies multidisciplinary consultation between caregivers.Results: The resulting digital score card consisted of 70 items, subdivided into four non-medical and two medical domains. Weighing of risk factors was based on existing evidence. Pilot-evidence from a cohort of 218 pregnancies in a multi-practice urban setting showed a cut-off of 16 points would imply 20% of all pregnant women to be assessed in a multidisciplinary setting. A total of 28 care pathways were defined.Conclusion: The resulting score card is a universal risk screening instrument which incorporates recent evidence on non-medical risk factors for adverse pregnancy outcomes and enables systematic risk management in an integrated antenatal health care setting.

  12. An instrument for broadened risk assessment in antenatal health care including non-medical issues

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amber Amanda Vos


    Full Text Available Introduction: Growing evidence on the risk contributing role of non-medical factors on pregnancy outcomes urged for a new approach in early antenatal risk selection. The evidence invites to more integration, in particular between the clinical working area and the public health domain. We developed a non-invasive, standardized instrument for comprehensive antenatal risk assessment. The current study presents the application-oriented development of a risk screening instrument for early antenatal detection of risk factors and tailored prevention in an integrated care setting. Methods: A review of published instruments complemented with evidence from cohort studies. Selection and standardization of risk factors associated with small for gestational age, preterm birth, congenital anomalies and perinatal mortality. Risk factors were weighted to obtain a cumulative risk score. Responses were then connected to corresponding care pathways. A cumulative risk threshold was defined, which can be adapted to the population and the availability of preventive facilities. A score above the threshold implies multidisciplinary consultation between caregivers. Results: The resulting digital score card consisted of 70 items, subdivided into four non-medical and two medical domains. Weighing of risk factors was based on existing evidence. Pilot-evidence from a cohort of 218 pregnancies in a multi-practice urban setting showed a cut-off of 16 points would imply 20% of all pregnant women to be assessed in a multidisciplinary setting. A total of 28 care pathways were defined. Conclusion: The resulting score card is a universal risk screening instrument which incorporates recent evidence on non-medical risk factors for adverse pregnancy outcomes and enables systematic risk management in an integrated antenatal health care setting.

  13. Biomasfor: an open-source holistic model for the assessment of sustainable forest bioenergy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sacchelli S


    Full Text Available This paper presents an open-source spatial analysis model (Biomasfor that can quantify the availability of forest wood-energy biomass in the light of ecological and economic sustainability. Several multi-functionality parameters were evaluated to highlight the potential impact of biomass extraction on different forest functions. The multistep approach used and the model’s internal structure permit the use of the model with highly differentiated input datasets. The introduction of biomass demand evaluation allows the quantification of the wood-energy supply/demand. The analysis is focused on the province of Trento (northeastern Italian Alps. The results are based on a scenario evaluation characterised by several degrees of biomass extraction and by a sensitivity analysis of biomass price, as well as on a typology of mechanisation. The model outputs define a reduction in biomass availability with the introduction of technical, economic and multi-functionality parameters. Furthermore, considerations on territorial characteristics outline the importance of woodchip production as a means of avoiding carbon dioxide emissions and achieving low-impact reductions of the risk of fires. The model appears to be an effective tool in bioenergy planning, particularly for the following purposes: (i the estimation of the biomass supply/demand ratio under different scenarios; (ii a preliminary analysis of biomass quality; and (iii the influence of local environmental, economic and logistical characteristics on biomass production.

  14. A comparative analysis between laparoscopy and open colectomy: assessment of perioperative and oncological outcomes. (United States)

    Farinetti, Alberto; Bonetti, Luca Reggiani; Migaldi, Mario; Mattioli, Anna Vittoria; Pennella, Sonia; Muratori, Simone; Rossi, Aldo


    Il presente studio raffronta due gruppi di pazienti affetti da adenocarcinoma dolo-rettale, sottoposti rispettivamente a colectomia con tecnica open e a videolaparoscopia, mettendone in luce benefici e svantaggi. Si tratta di un’analisi retrospettiva: dal gennaio 2003 e il dicembre 2006 sono stati reclutati 54 pazienti; di questi 26 operati in laparotomia e 28 in laparoscopia. Per la chirurgia laparotomica la durata media dell’intervento è stata di 177.9 minuti (tempo chirurgico) e di 280.4 minuti (tempo di sala operatoria con un minimo di 110 ed un massimo di 360 minuti, con significative differenze in rapporto al tipo di chirurgia effettuata e la storia clinica del paziente. Per la chirurgia laparoscopica la durata media è stata di 293 minuti (range 135-520), con significative differenze dipendenti dalla porzione di intestino asportata. Il raffronto delle due tecniche chirurgiche, laparotomica versus lapsroscopica, ha rivelato alcune differenze. La durata della resezione è stata maggiore per la laparoscopia se confrontata con la tecnica tradizionale. Entrambi gli approcci rappresentano tecniche convenienti, sicure ed oncologicamente corrette. La laparoscopia mostra maggiori vantaggi in termini di controllo del dolore, assenza di estese cicatrici, riscontro di laparoceli e di degenza post operatoria comparata con la tecnica laparotomica.

  15. Assessment of polygenic effects links primary open-angle glaucoma and age-related macular degeneration. (United States)

    Cuellar-Partida, Gabriel; Craig, Jamie E; Burdon, Kathryn P; Wang, Jie Jin; Vote, Brendan J; Souzeau, Emmanuelle; McAllister, Ian L; Isaacs, Timothy; Lake, Stewart; Mackey, David A; Constable, Ian J; Mitchell, Paul; Hewitt, Alex W; MacGregor, Stuart


    Primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG) and age-related macular degeneration (AMD) are leading causes of irreversible blindness. Several loci have been mapped using genome-wide association studies. Until very recently, there was no recognized overlap in the genetic contribution to AMD and POAG. At genome-wide significance level, only ABCA1 harbors associations to both diseases. Here, we investigated the genetic architecture of POAG and AMD using genome-wide array data. We estimated the heritability for POAG (h(2)g = 0.42 ± 0.09) and AMD (h(2)g = 0.71 ± 0.08). Removing known loci for POAG and AMD decreased the h(2)g estimates to 0.36 and 0.24, respectively. There was evidence for a positive genetic correlation between POAG and AMD (rg = 0.47 ± 0.25) which remained after removing known loci (rg = 0.64 ± 0.31). We also found that the genetic correlation between sexes for POAG was likely to be less than 1 (rg = 0.33 ± 0.24), suggesting that differences of prevalence among genders may be partly due to heritable factors.

  16. Student Assessment of Quality of Access at the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juliet Obhajajie Inegbedion


    Full Text Available This paper presents a study conducted by Inegbedion, Adu and Ofulue from the National Open University of Nigeria. The study focused on the quality of access (admission and registration at NOUN from a student perspective. A survey design was used for the study while a multi-stage sampling technique was used to select the sample size. All the 78,555 registered students in all the 61 Study Centres of the University at the time of the study formed the population; out of which 3,060 students were sampled. The questionnaire instrument is the Institutional Internal QA Tools and Instrument developed by the African Council for Distance Education (ACDE as a regulatory mechanism. The data collected were analyzed using simple statistics. The result showed that 66% of the students confirmed that NOUN has published clear policies on the admission and registration of students. About 29.1% of the students were not satisfied with the transparency of the admission process. In conclusion, the study revealed high quality of access and some deficiencies in website and Internet connectivity.

  17. Assessing anthropogenic pressures on groundwater using stable OH isotopes: perspectives and issues (United States)

    Negrel, Philippe; Ollivier, Patrick; Flehoc, Christine; Hube, Daniel


    Large developments of isotope hydrogeology were done and well-established techniques mainly applying stable isotopes of the water molecule (hydrogen and oxygen) are now used largely to trace water provenance but also recharge processes. New methods allow the use of non-traditional isotopes (metals, compound specific stable isotope analysis CSIA...) to trace anthropogenic pressures in surface- and groundwater. Groundwater contamination in large industrial sites may come from several origins such as leakage from tanks during the production process of chemical products, liquid storage tanks, solid end product or past accumulated product in soil which is released over the time. The understanding of the origin and the further evolution of the chemical contamination in groundwater in an industrial site issued from past or current industrial activities is essential for the industrial companies regarding their environmental policies. The objective of this study was to use with an innovative way the stable isotopes of the water molecule as a low cost tool to trace pollutant plumes in groundwater and help to a better management of contaminated industrial sites. We present data on stable isotopes O and H in an European region where electrochemistry plants occur. For confidentiality purposes, the sites remain anonymous. Present day industrial activities have a direct impact on the groundwater over the site and migration of the contaminant(s) plume out of the site is supposed. We first characterize the natural groundwater background through the O-H characterization of surface water, lakes, thermal waters and regional shallow aquifers. High and low altitude recharge can be demonstrated in the area. Secondly, we used the stable isotope of the water molecule to trace over the site the impact of the Cl-rich liquor manufacturing process. Large deuterium enrichment was evidenced in the groundwater and the high values can be related to a direct contamination of the groundwater through

  18. Analysis of Open Access Landscape

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Helen Doyle; Andy Gass; Debra Lappin; Rebecca Kennison


    This paper is created by bounding 5 editorials of Public Library of Science (PLoS ) which have written on various aspects of open access. It covers wide range topics of important open access issues, such as from paying for open access to copyright to open access as a public issue, which may be more or less of interest of our audience.

  19. A Novel, Open Access Method to Assess Sleep Duration Using a Wrist-Worn Accelerometer.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vincent T van Hees

    Full Text Available Wrist-worn accelerometers are increasingly being used for the assessment of physical activity in population studies, but little is known about their value for sleep assessment. We developed a novel method of assessing sleep duration using data from 4,094 Whitehall II Study (United Kingdom, 2012-2013 participants aged 60-83 who wore the accelerometer for 9 consecutive days, filled in a sleep log and reported sleep duration via questionnaire. Our sleep detection algorithm defined (nocturnal sleep as a period of sustained inactivity, itself detected as the absence of change in arm angle greater than 5 degrees for 5 minutes or more, during a period recorded as sleep by the participant in their sleep log. The resulting estimate of sleep duration had a moderate (but similar to previous findings agreement with questionnaire based measures for time in bed, defined as the difference between sleep onset and waking time (kappa = 0.32, 95%CI:0.29,0.34 and total sleep duration (kappa = 0.39, 0.36,0.42. This estimate was lower for time in bed for women, depressed participants, those reporting more insomnia symptoms, and on weekend days. No such group differences were found for total sleep duration. Our algorithm was validated against data from a polysomnography study on 28 persons which found a longer time window and lower angle threshold to have better sensitivity to wakefulness, while the reverse was true for sensitivity to sleep. The novelty of our method is the use of a generic algorithm that will allow comparison between studies rather than a "count" based, device specific method.

  20. Issues in the assessment of congenital health risks from mercury in coal

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lipfert, F.W.; Moskowitz, P.D. [Brookhaven National Lab., Upton, NY (United States); Saroff, L. [USDOE Assistant Secretary for Fossil Energy, Washington, DC (United States). Clean Coal Technology Program


    This paper describes a probabilistic assessment of congenital neurological risks associated with consumption of fish and shellfish containing MeHg and the effects that local coal combustion might have on those risks. Two scenarios were considered with this model: the ``baseline`` scenario (MeHg from fish consumption without local impacts), and the ``impact`` scenario (baseline plus local power-plant impact on freshwater fish). In this paper, we describe the framework and application of the model, including parameters and statistical linkages, the distributions used to represent the parameters, and the statistical methods used to characterize the inherent variability in each individual`s diet and the distribution of individuals within a hypothetical population. These factors define the baseline, which is then compared to observations of MeHg in hair in order to demonstrate the model`s validity. The incremental effect of local coal combustion is represented by augmenting the distribution of Hg in local freshwater fish by a prescribed amount, which we refer to as the ``impact factor.`` Conventional air pollution dispersion modeling is then used to relate this factor to an appropriate range of powerplant characteristics.

  1. Circulating nucleic acids and hemostasis: biological basis behind their relationship and technical issues in assessment. (United States)

    Danese, Elisa; Montagnana, Martina; Fava, Cristiano; Guidi, Gian Cesare


    Nucleic acids (NAs) constitute the backbone of cellular life permitting conservation, transmission, and execution of genetic information. In the past few years, new unexpected functions for NAs, projecting them also beyond nuclear and cellular boundaries have been recognized: circulating cell-free nucleic acids (cfNAs), histones, DNA-histone complexes, microRNAs (miRs) may have a regulatory role in physiological and pathological processes. In particular, several lines of evidence suggest that they can constitute unconventional mediators of thrombus formation, intervening both in hemostasis and thrombosis. Furthermore, in the past decade, the possibility to detect and quantify these in plasma and/or in serum has led to their ancillary use as potential markers in various medical conditions. The use of these as markers within the fields of thrombosis and hemostasis looks promising: the potential implications include the possibility to assess patients' risk profiles for thrombotic events and the identification of more directed targets for pharmacologic intervention. The major impediment is that, to date, the methods by which NAs are explored, still largely differ between published studies and standardized procedures are still lacking. Future research should focus on the physiological mechanisms underlying the activities of such mediators in specific thrombotic conditions and on the definition of reliable methods for their quantification in biological fluids.

  2. Assessment of atmospheric impacts of biomass open burning in Kalimantan, Borneo during 2004 (United States)

    Mahmud, Mastura


    Biomass burning from the combustion of agricultural wastes and forest materials is one of the major sources of air pollution. The objective of the study is to investigate the major contribution of the biomass open burning events in the island of Borneo, Indonesia to the degradation of air quality in equatorial Southeast Asia. A total of 10173 active fire counts were detected by the MODIS Aqua satellite during August 2004, and consequently, elevated the PM10 concentration levels at six air quality stations in the state of Sarawak, in east Malaysia, which is located in northwestern Borneo. The PM10 concentrations measured on a daily basis were above the 50 μg m-3 criteria as stipulated by the World Health Organization Air Quality Guidelines for most of the month, and exceeded the 24-h Recommended Malaysian Air Quality Guidelines of 150 μg m-3 on three separate periods from the 13th to the 30th August 2004. The average correlation between the ground level PM10 concentrations and the satellite derived aerosol optical depth (AOD) of 0.3 at several ground level air quality stations, implied the moderate relationship between the aerosols over the depth of the entire column of atmosphere and the ground level suspended particulate matter. Multiple regression for meteorological parameters such as rainfall, windspeed, visibility, mean temperature, relative humidity at two stations in Sarawak and active fire counts that were located near the centre of fire activities were only able to explain for 61% of the total variation in the AOD. The trajectory analysis of the low level mesoscale meteorological conditions simulated by the TAPM model illustrated the influence of the sea and land breezes within the lowest part of the planetary boundary layer, embedded within the prevailing monsoonal southwesterlies, in circulating the aged and new air particles within Sarawak.

  3. Air quality impact assessment of multiple open pit coal mines in northern Colombia. (United States)

    Huertas, José I; Huertas, María E; Izquierdo, Sebastián; González, Enrique D


    The coal mining region in northern Colombia is one of the largest open pit mining regions of the world. In 2009, there were 8 mining companies in operation with an approximate coal production of ∼70 Mtons/year. Since 2007, the Colombian air quality monitoring network has reported readings that exceed the daily and annual air quality standards for total suspended particulate (TSP) matter and particles with an equivalent aerodynamic diameter smaller than 10 μm (PM₁₀) in nearby villages. This paper describes work carried out in order to establish an appropriate clean air program for this region, based on the Colombian national environmental authority requirement for modeling of TSP and PM(10) dispersion. A TSP and PM₁₀ emission inventory was initially developed, and topographic and meteorological information for the region was collected and analyzed. Using this information, the dispersion of TSP was modeled in ISC3 and AERMOD using meteorological data collected by 3 local stations during 2008 and 2009. The results obtained were compared to actual values measured by the air quality monitoring network. High correlation coefficients (>0.73) were obtained, indicating that the models accurately described the main factors affecting particle dispersion in the region. The model was then used to forecast concentrations of particulate matter for 2010. Based on results from the model, areas within the modeling region were identified as highly, fairly, moderately and marginally polluted according to local regulations. Additionally, the contribution particulate matter to the pollution at each village was estimated. Using these predicted values, the Colombian environmental authority imposed new decontamination measures on the mining companies operating in the region. These measures included the relocation of three villages financed by the mine companies based on forecasted pollution levels.

  4. Counting highly cited papers for university research assessment: conceptual and technical issues. (United States)

    Rodríguez-Navarro, Alonso


    A Kuhnian approach to research assessment requires us to consider that the important scientific breakthroughs that drive scientific progress are infrequent and that the progress of science does not depend on normal research. Consequently, indicators of research performance based on the total number of papers do not accurately measure scientific progress. Similarly, those universities with the best reputations in terms of scientific progress differ widely from other universities in terms of the scale of investments made in research and in the higher concentrations of outstanding scientists present, but less so in terms of the total number of papers or citations. This study argues that indicators for the 1% high-citation tail of the citation distribution reveal the contribution of universities to the progress of science and provide quantifiable justification for the large investments in research made by elite research universities. In this tail, which follows a power low, the number of the less frequent and highly cited important breakthroughs can be predicted from the frequencies of papers in the upper part of the tail. This study quantifies the false impression of excellence produced by multinational papers, and by other types of papers that do not contribute to the progress of science. Many of these papers are concentrated in and dominate lists of highly cited papers, especially in lower-ranked universities. The h-index obscures the differences between higher- and lower-ranked universities because the proportion of h-core papers in the 1% high-citation tail is not proportional to the value of the h-index.

  5. Profiles of and correlation between objective and subjective outcome assessments following open-door laminoplasty for cervical spondylotic myelopathy

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Zhou Feifei; Zhang Yilong; Sun Yu; Zhang Fengshan; Pan Shengfa; Diao Yinze; Chen Xin


    Background Open-door laminoplasty is widely used in the treatment of cervical spondylotic myelopathy (CSM).This study aimed to investigate the profiles of and correlation between objective and subjective short-term outcome assessments after open-door laminoplasty for CSM.Methods We retrospectively analyzed surgical outcomes in 129 consecutive CSM patients who underwent open-door laminoplasty in Peking University Third Hospital from February 2008 to November 2011.Both objective and subjective assessments were evaluated before surgery,3 months after surgery,and 1 year after surgery.We then analyzed the profiles of and correlation between objective and subjective short-term outcomes.Results The Modified Japanese Orthopaedic Association (mJOA) score was significantly improved at 3 months (P<0.01) and 1 year (P<0.01) after surgery.Bivariate Logistic regression showed that sensory improvement contributed more to the recovery rate than motor function improvement at 3 months after surgery,while motor function contributed more to the recovery rate at 1 year after surgery.On the subjective assessment (the short form (SF)-36),there was no significant improvement at 3 months after surgery (P>0.05),while physical function (PF),role-physical (RP),and social function (SF) were notably improved at 1 year after surgery (P<O.01).Improved mJOA score correlated with improvements in PF,RP,bodily pain,general health (GH),vitality (VT),and SF (P<O.05) at 3 months after surgery; PF,GH,VT,and SF were associated with improved mJOA scores at 1 year after surgery.Conclusions Patients benefit from surgery by postoperative restitution of neurological function with early recovery of sensory function,followed by a gradual transition to motor function improvement.At the early stage of recovery,improvement in the mJOA score essentially correlated with improvements in the physical domains of the SF-36,while at the later stage,mJOA score improvement was associated with improvements in both

  6. Flow cytometric assessment of specific leucine incorporation in the open Mediterranean (United States)

    Talarmin, A.; van Wambeke, F.; Catala, P.; Courties, C.; Lebaron, P.


    The surface of the Mediterranean Sea is a low-phosphate-low-chlorophyll marine area where marine heterotrophic prokaryotes significantly contribute to the biogeochemical cycles of all biogenic elements such as carbon, notably through the mineralization of dissolved organic compounds. Cell-specific leucine incorporation rates were determined in early summer in the open stratified Mediterranean Sea. The bulk leucine incorporation rate was on average 5 ± 4 pmol leu l-1 h-1 (n=30). Cell-specific 3H-leucine incorporation rates were assayed using flow cytometry coupled to cell sorting. Heterotrophic prokaryotes (Hprok) were divided into cytometric groups according to their side scatter and green fluorescence properties: high nucleic acid containing cells (HNA) with high scatter (HNA-hs) and low scatter (HNA-ls) and low nucleic acid containing cells (LNA). Cell-specific leucine incorporation rates of these cytometric groups ranged from 2 to 54, 0.9 to 11, and 1 to 12 × 10-21 mol cell-1 h-1, respectively. LNA cells represented 45 to 63% of the Hprok abundance, and significantly contributed to the bulk leucine incorporation rates, from 12 to 43%. HNA/LNA ratios of cell-specific leucine incorporation were on average 2.0 ± 0.7 (n=30). In surface layers (from 0 m down to the deep chlorophyll depth, DCM), cell-specific rates of HNA-hs were elevated (7 and 13 times greater than LNA and HNA-ls, respectively). Nevertheless, on average HNA-hs (26%) and LNA (27%) equally contributed to the bulk leucine incorporation in these layers. Prochlorococcus cells were easily sorted near the DCM and displayed cell-specific leucine incorporation rates ranging from 3 to 55 × 10-21 mol leu cell-1 h-1, i.e. as high as HNA-hs'. These sorted groups could therefore be defined as key-players in the process of leucine incorporation into proteins. The mixotrophic features of certain photosynthetic prokaryotes and the high contribution of LNA cells to leucine incorporation within the microbial

  7. Flow cytometric assessment of specific leucine incorporation in the open Mediterranean

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Talarmin


    Full Text Available The surface of the Mediterranean Sea is a low-phosphate-low-chlorophyll marine area where marine heterotrophic prokaryotes significantly contribute to the biogeochemical cycles of all biogenic elements such as carbon, notably through the mineralization of dissolved organic compounds. Cell-specific leucine incorporation rates were determined in early summer in the open stratified Mediterranean Sea. The bulk leucine incorporation rate was on average 5 ± 4 pmol leu l−1 h−1 (n=30. Cell-specific 3H-leucine incorporation rates were assayed using flow cytometry coupled to cell sorting. Heterotrophic prokaryotes (Hprok were divided into cytometric groups according to their side scatter and green fluorescence properties: high nucleic acid containing cells (HNA with high scatter (HNA-hs and low scatter (HNA-ls and low nucleic acid containing cells (LNA. Cell-specific leucine incorporation rates of these cytometric groups ranged from 2 to 54, 0.9 to 11, and 1 to 12 × 10-21 mol cell−1 h−1, respectively. LNA cells represented 45 to 63% of the Hprok abundance, and significantly contributed to the bulk leucine incorporation rates, from 12 to 43%. HNA/LNA ratios of cell-specific leucine incorporation were on average 2.0 ± 0.7 (n=30. In surface layers (from 0 m down to the deep chlorophyll depth, DCM, cell-specific rates of HNA-hs were elevated (7 and 13 times greater than LNA and HNA-ls, respectively. Nevertheless, on average HNA-hs (26% and LNA (27% equally contributed to the bulk leucine incorporation in these layers. Prochlorococcus cells were easily sorted near the DCM and displayed cell-specific leucine incorporation rates ranging from 3 to 55 × 10-21 mol leu cell−1 h−1, i.e. as high as HNA-hs'. These sorted groups could therefore be defined as key-players in the process of leucine incorporation into proteins. The

  8. Assessment of the accuracy of coupled cluster perturbation theory for open-shell systems. II. Quadruples expansions (United States)

    Eriksen, Janus J.; Matthews, Devin A.; Jørgensen, Poul; Gauss, Jürgen


    We extend our assessment of the potential of perturbative coupled cluster (CC) expansions for a test set of open-shell atoms and organic radicals to the description of quadruple excitations. Namely, the second- through sixth-order models of the recently proposed CCSDT(Q-n) quadruples series [J. J. Eriksen et al., J. Chem. Phys. 140, 064108 (2014)] are compared to the prominent CCSDT(Q) and ΛCCSDT(Q) models. From a comparison of the models in terms of their recovery of total CC singles, doubles, triples, and quadruples (CCSDTQ) energies, we find that the performance of the CCSDT(Q-n) models is independent of the reference used (unrestricted or restricted (open-shell) Hartree-Fock), in contrast to the CCSDT(Q) and ΛCCSDT(Q) models, for which the accuracy is strongly dependent on the spin of the molecular ground state. By further comparing the ability of the models to recover relative CCSDTQ total atomization energies, the discrepancy between them is found to be even more pronounced, stressing how a balanced description of both closed- and open-shell species—as found in the CCSDT(Q-n) models—is indeed of paramount importance if any perturbative CC model is to be of chemical relevance for high-accuracy applications. In particular, the third-order CCSDT(Q-3) model is found to offer an encouraging alternative to the existing choices of quadruples models used in modern computational thermochemistry, since the model is still only of moderate cost, albeit markedly more costly than, e.g., the CCSDT(Q) and ΛCCSDT(Q) models.

  9. Open-ended questions: An alternative mode to assess the students' performance in concept development and use of scientific vocabulary (United States)

    Agairre-Ortiz, Maria


    Important reform movements across the nation recognize that improved science performance, language development, and alternative assessment are national priorities. This study examined the effect of two modes of alternative assessment on students' performance in in-depth concept development (IDC) and use of scientific vocabulary (VOC). The research questions asked for significant differences in students' performance in IDC and VOC across time regarding: (1) mode of assessment, (2) science achievement level, and classes. The study also investigated what are the: (1) students' opinions and feelings about the assessment modes (2) similarities and differences between OE-W and OE-D groups regarding the quality of IDC and VOC used. The sample of convenience included one hundred and four fifth grade LEP students randomly assigned to two groups. Students in both groups were asked to answer the same open-ended question at three assessment times during the study of a chapter on electricity and magnetism. Students in group one were asked to answer the question by writing paragraphs and students in group two answered the same question by making drawings. Results from a four-way repeated measures analysis showed that students in the OE-D mode, especially above-average performed better in in-depth concept development than those in the writing mode across time. The non-significant four-way interaction suggests that the differences in assessment mode across time are not influenced by science achievement level and the classes. The results suggest that although the OE-D mode in general yielded better scores, both modes of assessment could be used to assess Spanish-dominant LEP students' conceptual development and scientific vocabulary use. In general, students expressed preference for OE-D because they felt more confident and comfortable answering questions by drawing. Most of the statistical results were supported by the qualitative analysis for both dependent variables. Small size

  10. Ventricular Assist Device implant (AB 5000 prototype cannula: In vitro assessment of MRI issues at 3-Tesla

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valencerina Samuel


    Full Text Available Abstract Purpose To evaluate MRI issues at 3-Tesla for a ventricular assist device (VAD. Methods The AB5000 Ventricle with a prototype Nitinol wire-reinforced In-Flow Cannula and Out-Flow Cannula attached (Abiomed, Inc., Danvers, MA was evaluated for magnetic field interactions, heating, and artifacts at 3-Tesla. MRI-related heating was assessed with the device in a gelled-saline-filled, head/torso phantom using a transmit/received RF body coil while performing MRI at a whole body averaged SAR of 3-W/kg for 15-min. Artifacts were assessed for the main metallic component of this VAD (atrial cannula using T1-weighted, spin echo and gradient echo pulse sequences. Results The AB5000 Ventricle with the prototype In-Flow Cannula and Out-Flow Cannula attached showed relatively minor magnetic field interactions that will not cause movement in situ. Heating was not excessive (highest temperature change, +0.8°C. Artifacts may create issues for diagnostic imaging if the area of interest is in the same area or close to the implanted metallic component of this VAD (i.e., the venous cannula. Conclusion The results of this investigation demonstrated that it would be acceptable for a patient with this VAD (AB5000 Ventricle with a prototype Nitinol wire-reinforced In-Flow Cannula and Out-Flow Cannula attached to undergo MRI at 3-Tesla or less. Notably, it is likely that the operation console for this device requires positioning a suitable distance (beyond the 100 Gauss line or in the MR control room from the 3-Tesla MR system to ensure proper function of the VAD.

  11. Scope for animal welfare education in open and distance learning: findings from a needs assessment study in India. (United States)

    Sasidhar, P V K; Jayasimha, N G


    The objectives of this study were twofold: to assess the demand for animal welfare education by open and distance learning (ODL) and to identify content to be covered in an ODL animal welfare programme. Through email, personal interviews and online surveys, data were collected from 161 respondents. The key survey questions were on: the need and reasons for providing animal welfare education through ODL; entry-level qualifications; job/career prospects; duration of the programme, and suggestions on course content. The majority of respondents felt that there was a need for a one-year ODL academic programme on animal welfare. In the light of the findings of this study and related discussions, the authors recommend that online and ODL programmes in animal welfare be developed to meet the continuing educational needs of veterinary students, working veterinarians, para-veterinarians and other stakeholders closely related to animal welfare.

  12. Open drug scenes and drug-related public nuisance: a visual rapid assessment research study in Dublin, Ireland. (United States)

    Van Hout, Marie Claire; Bingham, Tim


    The research was undertaken at a time of increasing public concerns for drug- and alcohol-related public nuisance in the city center of Dublin, Ireland. Rapid Assessment Research was conducted involving qualitative interviewing with drug service users; business, transport, community, voluntary, and statutory stakeholders (n = 61); and an environmental mapping exercise. The interplay between homelessness, loitering, an influx of drug users via city metro systems, transient open drug scenes, street drinking, drug injecting, intimidation, knife crime, and prescribed medication abuse was evident. Potential strategies to address drug and alcohol related public nuisance are advised to include the relocation of treatment services, targeted harm reduction initiatives, urban regeneration, improved community rehabilitation pathways, and heightened policing intensity.

  13. Evaluation of colloid transport issues and recommendations for SKI performance assessments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wickham, S. M.; Bennett, D. G.; Higgo, J. J. W. [Galson Sciences Ltd., Oakham (United Kingdom)


    The primary objective of this project was to develop recommendations to SKI for evaluating the potential significance of colloids in performance assessment (PA) studies by: Updating a previous review of the treatment of colloids in PA studies for radioactive waste repositories and to include information on PAs published in the period 1997-1999. We have reviewed sixteen PAs conducted in nine countries and have made the following observations: All PAs include colloid formation and colloid transport in their FEP list. Although some programmes have deferred consideration of colloidal radionuclide transport until further research has been performed, more recent PAs do account for the effects of colloids. PAs of disposal systems in which the waste canister is surrounded by a bentonite buffer do not consider the effect of colloids on the source term. These PAs assume that all colloids are filtered by the bentonite buffer and cannot escape from the near-field. PAs of disposal systems with no bentonite buffer have to account for mobilisation of radionuclides from the waste by colloids. The concentration of colloids that may form in the repository is a key uncertainty. Many PA programmes have modelled colloidal radionuclide transport in the geosphere using one-dimensional transport equations. No PA has included a comprehensive treatment of colloid transport using mechanistic modelling. Some PAs have not undertaken modelling of colloid transport in the geosphere, but have relied instead on arguments that such transport processes will be of low consequence to the performance of the disposal system. Five PAs have shown the effects of colloid transport through the geosphere to be potentially significant. For the disposal of spent nuclear fuel, SKB has developed the KBS-3 concept. For the disposal of long-lived low-level and intermediate-level radioactive waste, SKB has developed the SFL 3-5 concept. In the SFL 3-5 concept, waste is placed in underground disposal caverns and

  14. An open-database of Grape Harvest dates for climate research: data description and quality assessment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. Daux


    Full Text Available We present a dataset of grape harvest dates (GHD series that has been compiled from international and non-translated French and Spanish literature and from unpublished documentary sources from public organizations and from wine-growers. As of June 2011, this GHD dataset comprises 378 series mainly from France (93% of the data as well as series from Switzerland, Italy, Spain and Luxembourg. The series have variable length and contain gaps of variable sizes. The longest and most complete ones are from Burgundy, Switzerland, Southern Rhône valley, Jura and Ile-de-France.

    The GHD series were grouped into 27 regions according to their location, to geomorphological and geological criteria, and to past and present grape varieties. The GHD regional composite series (GHD-RCS were calculated and compared pairwise to assess the quality of the series. Significant (p-value < 0.001 and strong correlations exist between most of them. As expected, the correlations tended to be higher when the vineyards are closer, the highest correlation (R = 0.91 being obtained between the High Loire Valley and the Ile-de-France GHD-RCS.

    The strong dependence of vine cycle on temperature and, therefore, the strong link between GHD and the temperature of the growing season was also used to test the quality of the GHD series. The strongest correlations are obtained between the GHD-RCS and the temperature series of the nearest weather stations. Moreover, the GHD-RCS/temperature correlation maps show spatial patterns similar to temperature correlation maps. The stability of the correlations over time is explored. The most striking feature is their generalized deterioration at the late 19th–early 20th turning point. The possible effects on the GHD of the phylloxera crisis, which took place at this time, are discussed.

    The median of the standardized GHD-RCS was calculated. The distribution of the extreme years of this general synthetic series is

  15. Learning science content through socio-scientific issues-based instruction: a multi-level assessment study (United States)

    Sadler, Troy D.; Romine, William L.; Sami Topçu, Mustafa


    Science educators have presented numerous conceptual and theoretical arguments in favor of teaching science through the exploration of socio-scientific issues (SSI). However, the empirical knowledge base regarding the extent to which SSI-based instruction supports student learning of science content is limited both in terms of the number of studies that have been conducted in this area and the quality of research. This research sought to answer two questions: (1) To what extent does SSI-based instruction support student learning of science content? and (2) How do assessments at variable distances from the curriculum reveal patterns of learning associated with SSI-based instruction? Sixty-nine secondary students taught by three teachers participated in the study. Three teachers implemented an SSI intervention focused on the use of biotechnology for identifying and treating sexually transmitted diseases. We found that students demonstrated statistically and practically significant gains in content knowledge as measured by both proximal and distal assessments. These findings support the claim that SSI-based teaching can foster content learning and improved performance on high-stakes tests.

  16. Not Yes or No, But What If: An Examination of Policies and Issues to be Addressed with Open Homosexuality in the US Military (United States)


    with time, but the majority of gay and lesbian soldiers refrained from acknowledging their homosexuality . 24 Australian Armed Forces 1986 for handling cases for military personnel who were identified as gay or lesbian . If a service member self-identified as homosexual he or she...and civilian population showed the majority against open service for gays and lesbians . 27 The history of homosexuality for the British policy took

  17. An Open-Label Pilot Study to Assess the Efficacy and Safety of Virgin Coconut Oil in Reducing Visceral Adiposity (United States)

    Liau, Kai Ming; Lee, Yeong Yeh; Chen, Chee Keong; Rasool, Aida Hanum G.


    Introduction. This is an open-label pilot study on four weeks of virgin coconut oil (VCO) to investigate its efficacy in weight reduction and its safety of use in 20 obese but healthy Malay volunteers. Methodology. Efficacy was assessed by measuring weight and associated anthropometric parameters and lipid profile one week before and one week after VCO intake. Safety was assessed by comparing organ function tests one week before and one week after intake of VCO. Paired t-test was used to analyse any differences in all the measurable variables. Results. Only waist circumference (WC) was significantly reduced with a mean reduction of 2.86 cm or 0.97% from initial measurement (P = .02). WC reduction was only seen in males (P < .05). There was no change in the lipid profile. There was a small reduction in creatinine and alanine transferase levels. Conclusion. VCO is efficacious for WC reduction especially in males and it is safe for use in humans. PMID:22164340

  18. Experience of analyzing legislative and scientific components while choosing the assessment criteria in open competitions on design

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Reshetova Anna Yur'evna


    Full Text Available This research study defines the right of the customer to carry out public procurement for design objects of capital construction in the form of open competition, offers the comparative analysis of the evaluation criteria based on the old and the new legislative framework for public procurement. It was assumed, there in the legislation is no clear conceptual framework governing the selection of the evaluation criteria, the same as a method for improving the selection criteria for the assessment of the State order for the design. The process of public procurement in the Russian Federation beginning from 01.01.2014 g. is regulated by the federal law no. 44-FZ from 05.04.2013 “On the contract system in the procurement of goods, works and services for public and municipal needs” (hereinafter - the Law of the contract system. Open competition remains the most carefully prepared and developed of all the procedures for procurement. However, in practice the customers continued to violate the normative and legal regulation of public procurement. One of the most troublesome aspects of the Russian legislation is the criteria defined by customers to evaluate the participants who submitted their applications for the contest. Here we would like to note that according to the Law on contract system such criteria as “term of work performance” and “term and volume of providing the guarantee for quality of the works” aren’t subject to an assessment, in comparison with the Law on government procurements existing earlier. However, as scientific researches in the field show, these criteria were very essential and necessary for assessing the applications. The analysis of the past competitions showed that with the criterion “quality of works” the customer, in most cases, doesn’t establish any certain requirements to the participant of purchase. He asks to supply only the so-called offer on quality of works consisting in the detailed description of

  19. Risk assessment strategies for nanoscale and fine-sized titanium dioxide particles: Recognizing hazard and exposure issues. (United States)

    Warheit, David B; Donner, E Maria


    The basic tenets for assessing health risks posed by nanoparticles (NP) requires documentation of hazards and the corresponding exposures that may occur. Accordingly, this review describes the range and types of potential human exposures that may result from interactions with titanium dioxide (TiO2) particles or NP - either in the occupational/workplace environment, or in consumer products, including food materials and cosmetics. Each of those applications has a predominant route of exposure. Very little is known about the human impact potential from environmental exposures to NP - thus this particular issue will not be discussed further. In the workplace or occupational setting inhalation exposure predominates. Experimental toxicity studies demonstrate low hazards in particle-exposed rats. Only at chronic overload exposures do rats develop forms of lung pathology. These findings are not supported by multiple epidemiology studies in heavily-exposed TiO2 workers which demonstrate a lack of correlation between chronic particle exposures and adverse health outcomes including lung cancer and noncancerous chronic respiratory effects. Cosmetics and sunscreens represent the major application of dermal exposures to TiO2 particles. Experimental dermal studies indicate a lack of penetration of particles beyond the epidermis with no consequent health risks. Oral exposures to ingested TiO2 particles in food occur via passage through the gastrointestinal tract (GIT), with studies indicating negligible uptake of particles into the bloodstream of humans or rats with subsequent excretion through the feces. In addition, standardized guideline-mandated subchronic oral toxicity studies in rats demonstrate very low toxicity effects with NOAELs of >1000 mg/kg bw/day. Additional issues which are summarized in detail in this review are: 1) Methodologies for implementing the Nano Risk Framework - a process for ensuring the responsible development of products containing nanoscale

  20. Assessment of ambient background concentrations of elements in soil using combined survey and open-source data. (United States)

    Mikkonen, Hannah G; Clarke, Bradley O; Dasika, Raghava; Wallis, Christian J; Reichman, Suzie M


    Understanding ambient background concentrations in soil, at a local scale, is an essential part of environmental risk assessment. Where high resolution geochemical soil surveys have not been undertaken, soil data from alternative sources, such as environmental site assessment reports, can be used to support an understanding of ambient background conditions. Concentrations of metals/metalloids (As, Mn, Ni, Pb and Zn) were extracted from open-source environmental site assessment reports, for soils derived from the Newer Volcanics basalt, of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. A manual screening method was applied to remove samples that were indicated to be contaminated by point sources and hence not representative of ambient background conditions. The manual screening approach was validated by comparison to data from a targeted background soil survey. Statistical methods for exclusion of contaminated samples from background soil datasets were compared to the manual screening method. The statistical methods tested included the Median plus Two Median Absolute Deviations, the upper whisker of a normal and log transformed Tukey boxplot, the point of inflection on a cumulative frequency plot and the 95th percentile. We have demonstrated that where anomalous sample results cannot be screened using site information, the Median plus Two Median Absolute Deviations is a conservative method for derivation of ambient background upper concentration limits (i.e. expected maximums). The upper whisker of a boxplot and the point of inflection on a cumulative frequency plot, were also considered adequate methods for deriving ambient background upper concentration limits, where the percentage of contaminated samples is <25%. Median ambient background concentrations of metals/metalloids in the Newer Volcanic soils of Melbourne were comparable to ambient background concentrations in Europe and the United States, except for Ni, which was naturally enriched in the basalt-derived soils of

  1. Critical Assessment of TD-DFT for Excited States of Open-Shell Systems: I. Doublet-Doublet Transitions. (United States)

    Li, Zhendong; Liu, Wenjian


    A benchmark set of 11 small radicals is set up to assess the performance of time-dependent density functional theory (TD-DFT) for the excited states of open-shell systems. Both the unrestricted (U-TD-DFT) and spin-adapted (X-TD-DFT) formulations of TD-DFT are considered. For comparison, the well-established EOM-CCSD (equation-of-motion coupled-cluster with singles and doubles) is also used. In total, 111 low-lying singly excited doublet states are accessed by all the three approaches. Taking the MRCISD+Q (multireference configuration interaction with singles and doubles plus the Davidson correction) results as the benchmark, it is found that both U-TD-DFT and EOM-CCSD perform well for those states dominated by singlet-coupled single excitations (SCSE) from closed-shell to open-shell, open-shell to vacant-shell, or closed-shell to vacant-shell orbitals. However, for those states dominated by triplet-coupled single excitations (TCSE) from closed-shell to vacant-shell orbitals, both U-TD-DFT and EOM-CCSD fail miserably due to severe spin contaminations. In contrast, X-TD-DFT provides balanced descriptions of both SCSE and TCSE. As far as the functional dependence is concerned, it is found that, when the Hartree-Fock ground state does not suffer from the instability problem, both global hybrid (GH) and range-separated hybrid (RSH) functionals perform grossly better than pure density functionals, especially for Rydberg and charge-transfer excitations. However, if the Hartree-Fock ground state is instable or nearly instable, GH and RSH tend to underestimate severely the excitation energies. The SAOP (statistically averaging of model orbital potentials) performs more uniformly than any other density functionals, although it generally overestimates the excitation energies of valence excitations. Not surprisingly, both EOM-CCSD and adiabatic TD-DFT are incapable of describing excited states with substantial double excitation characters.

  2. Open Hardware Business Models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edy Ferreira


    Full Text Available In the September issue of the Open Source Business Resource, Patrick McNamara, president of the Open Hardware Foundation, gave a comprehensive introduction to the concept of open hardware, including some insights about the potential benefits for both companies and users. In this article, we present the topic from a different perspective, providing a classification of market offers from companies that are making money with open hardware.

  3. Assessment of the implementation issues for fuel cells in domestic and small scale stationary power generation and CHP applications

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Graham, G.; Cruden, A.; Hart, J.


    This report discusses implementation issues associated with the use of fuel cells in <10 kW domestic, small-scale power generation and combined heat and power (CHP) operations in the UK. The report examines the key issues (fuel cell system standards and certification, fuel infrastructure, commercial issues and competing CHP technologies), before discussing non-technical issues including finance, ownership, import and export configuration, pricing structure, customer acceptability, installation, operation and training of servicing and commissioning personnel. The report goes on to discuss market and technical drivers, grid connection issues and solutions, operations and maintenance. Recommendations for the future are made.

  4. Issues on Settlement of Final Expenses and Performance Assessment in the Course of Transition:Evidence from China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Lü Wei


    This paper studies the process and the performance of transition with the following logic:transition is an objective process in accordance with the general principles of economic history;the objectivity is embodied in the expected economic and social effects of transition,the profound economic and social changes in the course of transition,and the different problems facing different transitional stages.Transition is,at the same time,a subjective process involving the participation of the government and the public;the subjectivity is embodied in the thinking on transition,path selection,policy design,and process control.It requires evaluation,correction,and anticipation on the dynamic process with analysis tools and methods that are normally used to validate the subjective thoughts in the objective world to verify whether effects of the subjective action follow and develop the objective principles.It is under such a logical framework that issues on the settlement of final expenses and the performance assessment of transition raised in this paper focus on the improvement in traditional analysis tools and methods and further apply such improvement to China's course of transition.The rudimental premise in this study is the combination of the process of transition,all-roundness of development,and phases of evolution.

  5. Assessment of exposure to pesticides during mixing/loading and spraying of tomatoes in the open field. (United States)

    Aprea, Maria Cristina; Bosi, Anna; Manara, Michele; Mazzocchi, Barbara; Pompini, Alessandra; Sormani, Francesca; Lunghini, Liana; Sciarra, Gianfranco


    Some evidence of exposure-response of metolachlor and pendimethalin for lung cancer and an association of metribuzin with risk of glioma have been reported. The primary objectives in this study were to evaluate exposure and occupational risk during mixing/loading of pesticides and during their application to tomatoes cultivated in open fields. Sixteen farmers were sampled. Respiratory exposure was estimated by personal air sampling using fiberglass filters in a IOM device. Dermal exposure was assessed using skin pads and hand washing. Absorbed doses were estimated assuming 100% lung retention, and 50% or 10% skin absorption for metribuzin, and pendimethalin and metolachlor, respectively. The three pesticides were quantified by gas chromatography tandem mass spectrometry in all matrices. Metolachlor was used as a tracer of contamination of clothes and tractors unrelated to the exposure monitored. Respiratory exposure to metribuzin, used in granular form, was on average more than one order of magnitude higher than exposure to pendimethalin, used in the form of microencapsulated liquid. The actual doses were 0.067-8.08 µg/kg bw, 0.420-12.6 µg/kg bw, and 0.003-0.877 µg/kg bw for pendimethalin, metribuzin, and metolachlor, respectively. Dermal exposure was about 88% of the actual dose for metribuzin and more than 95%, for pendimethalin and metolachlor. For risk assessment, the total absorbed doses (sum of respiratory and skin absorbed doses) were compared with the AOEL for each compound. The actual and absorbed doses of the three pesticides were always lower than the acceptable operator exposure level (AOEL), which are reported to be 234 µg/kg bw, 20 µg/kg bw, and 150 µg/kg bw for pendimethalin, metribuzin, and metolachlor, respectively. In any case, personal protective equipment and spraying devices should be chosen with care to minimize exposure.

  6. Student perspectives about mobile learning initiatives at Open University of Brazil: the mobile phone issue - doi: 10.4025/actascieduc.v32i2.11545

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Otacilio Antunes Santana


    Full Text Available Normal 0 21 false false false MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Tabela normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0cm 5.4pt 0cm 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0cm; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-ansi-language:#0400; mso-fareast-language:#0400; mso-bidi-language:#0400;} The objectives of this study were to verify if students of Open University of Brazil approve of mobile learning (m-learning initiatives, to identify the students' perspectives about m-learning, to develop a model of instructional design for m-learning environments, and to quantify student satisfaction with the presented model. 1,328 students agreed to participate in this study, all students of Open University of Brazil. They were questioned about their perspectives on m-learning at this university and if they agree with this educational model. The students agreed with the possible implementation of m-learning at this university, especially through mobiles phones. Collectively, the main ideas that the students offered to improve the efficiency of knowledge construction were classified into three groups: theory, practice, and interactivity. They also agreed with an instructional design model that was developed and shown to the three groups.  

  7. Assessment of the accuracy of coupled cluster perturbation theory for open-shell systems. II. Quadruples expansions

    CERN Document Server

    Eriksen, Janus J; Jørgensen, Poul; Gauss, Jürgen


    We extend our assessment of the potential of perturbative coupled cluster (CC) expansions for a test set of open-shell species to the description of quadruple excitations. In doing so, we compare the prominent CCSDT(Q) and lambda-CCSDT(Q) (a-CCSDT(Q)) models, in which the CC singles, doubles, and triples (CCSDT) energy is augmented by similar corrections for quadruple excitations, to the second- through sixth-order models of the CCSDT(Q-n) quadruples series, which is based on a CCSDT rather than an HF zeroth-order state. By comparing the models in terms of the size-intensive recovery of as well as the total deviation from the quadruples contribution to CC singles, doubles, triples, and quadruples (CCSDTQ) energies, we find (i) that the accuracy offered by the CCSDT(Q) and a-CCSDT(Q) models is strongly dependent on the spin of the molecular ground state - like for the CCSD(T) model in the first part of the present series [arXiv:1512.02846] - and (ii) that the performance of the CCSDT(Q-n) models is practically...

  8. 浅析建设开放大学应明确的几个重要问题%The Analysis of Several Strategic Issues of the Construction of Open University

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)



      Since 1969 the world's first Open University has been set up in the UK, the open education teaching mode has been widely promoted in the world . Building the modern Open University which is accommodate the development of the times in China, it can not only meet the practical needs of the system of lifelong education, but also it can create a learning society, and promote the socialist modernization objective. At present, in the process of building the Open University, we should be clearly the meaning of Open University, the development goals, school autonomy, and several other strategic issues, and make a good planning and design.%  自1969年世界上第一所开放大学在英国成立以来,开放教育教学模式在世界范围内得到了广泛推广。在中国建设适应时代发展要求的现代开放大学,既是满足构建终身教育体系、创建学习型社会的现实需求,又是推进社会主义现代化建设的客观要求。当前,在建设开放大学进程中,应明确开放大学的涵义、发展目标、办学自主权等几个战略性问题,做好规划设计。

  9. Magnetic Fusion Energy Plasma Interactive and High Heat Flux Components: Volume 5, Technical assessment of critical issues in the steady state operation of fusion confinement devices

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)


    Critical issues for the steady state operation of plasma confinement devices exist in both the physics and technology fields of fusion research. Due to the wide range and number of these issues, this technical assessment has focused on the crucial issues associated with the plasma physics and the plasma interactive components. The document provides information on the problem areas that affect the design and operation of a steady state ETR or ITER type confinement device. It discusses both tokamaks and alternative concepts, and provides a survey of existing and planned confinement machines and laboratory facilities that can address the identified issues. A universal definition of steady state operation is difficult to obtain. From a physics point of view, steady state is generally achieved when the time derivatives approach zero and the operation time greatly exceeds the characteristic time constants of the device. Steady state operation for materials depends on whether thermal stress, creep, fatigue, radiation damage, or power removal are being discussed. For erosion issues, the fluence and availability of the machine for continuous operation are important, assuming that transient events such as disruptions do not limit the component lifetimes. The panel suggests, in general terms, that steady state requires plasma operation from 100 to 1000 seconds and an availability of more than a few percent, which is similar to the expectations for an ETR type device. The assessment of critical issues for steady state operation is divided into four sections: physics issues; technology issues; issues in alternative concepts; and devices and laboratory facilities that can address these problems.

  10. A divergent synthetic approach to diverse molecular scaffolds: assessment of lead-likeness using LLAMA, an open-access computational tool. (United States)

    Colomer, Ignacio; Empson, Christopher J; Craven, Philip; Owen, Zachary; Doveston, Richard G; Churcher, Ian; Marsden, Stephen P; Nelson, Adam


    Complementary cyclisation reactions of hex-2-ene-1,6-diamine derivatives were exploited in the synthesis of alternative molecular scaffolds. The value of the synthetic approach was analysed using LLAMA, an open-access computational tool for assessing the lead-likeness and novelty of molecular scaffolds.

  11. Geochemical assessments and classification of coal mine spoils for better understanding of potential salinity issues at closure. (United States)

    Park, Jin Hee; Li, Xiaofang; Edraki, Mansour; Baumgartl, Thomas; Kirsch, Bernie


    Coal mining wastes in the form of spoils, rejects and tailings deposited on a mine lease can cause various environmental issues including contamination by toxic metals, acid mine drainage and salinity. Dissolution of salt from saline mine spoil, in particular, during rainfall events may result in local or regional dispersion of salts through leaching or in the accumulation of dissolved salts in soil pore water and inhibition of plant growth. The salinity in coal mine environments is from the geogenic salt accumulations and weathering of spoils upon surface exposure. The salts are mainly sulfates and chlorides of calcium, magnesium and sodium. The objective of the research is to investigate and assess the source and mobility of salts and trace elements in various spoil types, thereby predicting the leaching behavior of the salts and trace elements from spoils which have similar geochemical properties. X-ray diffraction analysis, total digestion, sequential extraction and column experiments were conducted to achieve the objectives. Sodium and chloride concentrations best represented salinity of the spoils, which might originate from halite. Electrical conductivity, sodium and chloride concentrations in the leachate decreased sharply with increasing leaching cycles. Leaching of trace elements was not significant in the studied area. Geochemical classification of spoil/waste defined for rehabilitation purposes was useful to predict potential salinity, which corresponded with the classification from cluster analysis based on leaching data of major elements. Certain spoil groups showed high potential salinity by releasing high sodium and chloride concentrations. Therefore, the leaching characteristics of sites having saline susceptible spoils require monitoring, and suitable remediation technologies have to be applied.

  12. Bike Helmets and Black Riders: Experiential Approaches to Helping Students Understand Natural Hazard Assessment and Mitigation Issues (United States)

    Stein, S. A.; Kley, J.; Hindle, D.; Friedrich, A. M.


    Defending society against natural hazards is a high-stakes game of chance against nature, involving tough decisions. How should a developing nation allocate its budget between building schools for towns without ones or making existing schools earthquake-resistant? Does it make more sense to build levees to protect against floods, or to prevent development in the areas at risk? Would more lives be saved by making hospitals earthquake-resistant, or using the funds for patient care? These topics are challenging because they are far from normal experience, in that they involve rare events and large sums. To help students in natural hazard classes conceptualize them, we pose tough and thought-provoking questions about complex issues involved and explore them together via lectures, videos, field trips, and in-class and homework questions. We discuss analogous examples from the students' experiences, drawing on a new book "Playing Against Nature, Integrating Science and Economics to Mitigate Natural Hazards in an Uncertain World". Asking whether they wear bicycle helmets and why or why not shows the cultural perception of risk. Individual students' responses vary, and the overall results vary dramatically between the US, UK, and Germany. Challenges in hazard assessment in an uncertain world are illustrated by asking German students whether they buy a ticket on public transportation - accepting a known cost - or "ride black" - not paying but risking a heavy fine if caught. We explore the challenge of balancing mitigation costs and benefits via the question "If you were a student in Los Angeles, how much more would you pay in rent each month to live in an earthquake-safe building?" Students learn that interdisciplinary thinking is needed, and that due to both uncertainties and sociocultural factors, no unique or right strategies exist for a particular community, much the less all communities. However, we can seek robust policies that give sensible results given

  13. Assessment of airborne microorganism contamination in an industrial area characterized by an open composting facility and a wastewater treatment plant. (United States)

    Grisoli, Pietro; Rodolfi, Marinella; Villani, Simona; Grignani, Elena; Cottica, Danilo; Berri, Angelo; Picco, Anna Maria; Dacarro, Cesare


    In order to assess the potential exposure hazard to workers and people living in the immediate surroundings of an area characterized by an open composting facility and a wastewater treatment plant, a quantitative and a qualitative analysis of airborne microorganisms were carried out. Air sampling was performed once a week for four consecutive weeks in summer and winter. Six sites were selected as air sampling sites: one was upwind at approximately 40 m from the facilities; the other five were downwind at increasing distances from the facilities, with the furthest at 100 m away. Monitoring permitted us to verify the influence that the composting activities and wastewater treatment had on the bacterial and fungal contamination of the air. The results obtained have been expressed by means of contamination indexes that have already been used in previous works: a major microbiological contamination near the plants was evidenced. Near the facilities, mesophilic bacteria, psychrophilic bacteria and microfungi showed the highest median concentrations, respectively, of 307.5, 327.5 and 257.5 CFU/m(3). Moreover, the season generally influenced the concentration of the bacteria as well as of the fungi; higher in summer than in winter. The contamination index global index of microbial contamination (GIMC/m(3)) showed mean values of 4058.9 in summer and 439.7 in winter and the contamination index-amplification index (AI) showed values of 4.5 and 1.1 in the same seasons, respectively. Controlling the seasonal effect, mesophilic bacteria, Pseudomonas spp. and Enterobacteriaceae showed a significant decline in concentration with respect to upwind air samples and with increasing distance. Both GIMC and AI showed a significant decline with respect to upwind air samples by increasing the distance from facilities after adjusting for the seasonal effect. In conclusion, even if these plants do not represent a potential risk for nearby populations, they may pose a potential health risk

  14. 浅析认知负荷教学设计理论的问题%Analysis on Current Issues and Open Questions in Cognitive Load Research

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)



    对认知负荷理论存在的一些问题进行了探讨,认为:①理清认知负荷与学习之间的关系,可探索影响工作记忆及调节认知过程的个体差异变量对认知负荷的作用;②澄清三种认知负荷的定义,可将其与教学目标相联系,并考虑先前知识、工作记忆容量和具体领域能力的个体差异,加强直接测量认知负荷的实证研究;③应该明确假设工作记忆的结构及其与认知负荷的关系,认知负荷的可加性假设也应建立在工作记忆不同的亚系统基础之上;④认知负荷研究应采用并接纳其他可提高外部效度的研究方法,并将其研究内容扩展到定义不良的学科领域.%Cognitive load theory is one of the most influential theories in instructional design.However, several issues arise when delving deeper into the theory.First, there is a need to clarify the relation between cognitive load and learning, so we should explore the effect of the individual differences that can potentially affect working memory and regulate cognitive processing on cognitive loads.Second, there is a need to clarify the definitions of the three cognitive loads, relating them with the specific educational goals of instruction, and considering individual differences in prior knowledge, working memory capacity, and domain-specific abilities, and strengthening empirical research on direct measure of cognitive load.Third, it should be assumed explicitly about the architecture of working memory and its relation to cognitive load, and the additivity should be revised based on the different subsystems of working memory model.Fourth, cognitive load research should accept and use other methods that can increase the external validity, and extend well-defined domains to ill-defined domains.

  15. The Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) Ecohydrological Model Circa 2015: Global Application Trends, Insights and Issues (United States)

    Gassman, P. W.; Arnold, J. G.; Srinivasan, R.


    The Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) is one of the most widely used watershed-scale water quality models in the world. Over 2,000 peer-reviewed SWAT-related journal articles have been published and hundreds of other studies have been published in conference proceedings and other formats. The use of SWAT was initially concentrated in North America and Europe but has also expanded dramatically in other countries and regions during the past decade including Brazil, China, India, Iran, South Korea, Southeast Asia and eastern Africa. The SWAT model has proven to be a very flexible tool for investigating a broad range of hydrologic and water quality problems at different watershed scales and environmental conditions, and has proven very adaptable for applications requiring improved hydrologic and other enhanced simulation needs. We investigate here the various technological, networking, and other factors that have supported the expanded use of SWAT, and also highlight current worldwide simulation trends and possible impediments to future increased usage of the model. Examples of technological advances include easy access to web-based documentation, user-support groups, and SWAT literature, a variety of Geographic Information System (GIS) interface tools, pre- and post-processing calibration software and other software, and an open source code which has served as a model development catalyst for multiple user groups. Extensive networking regarding the use of SWAT has further occurred via internet-based user support groups, model training workshops, regional working groups, regional and international conferences, and targeted development workshops. We further highlight several important model development trends that have emerged during the past decade including improved hydrologic, cropping system, best management practice (BMP) and pollutant transport simulation methods. In addition, several current SWAT weaknesses will be addressed and key development needs will be

  16. Revision, uptake and coding issues related to the open access Orchard Sports Injury Classification System (OSICS versions 8, 9 and 10.1

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John Orchard


    Full Text Available John Orchard1, Katherine Rae1, John Brooks2, Martin Hägglund3, Lluis Til4, David Wales5, Tim Wood61Sports Medicine at Sydney University, Sydney NSW Australia; 2Rugby Football Union, Twickenham, England, UK; 3Department of Medical and Health Sciences, Linköping University, Linköping, Sweden; 4FC Barcelona, Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain; 5Arsenal FC, Highbury, England, UK; 6Tennis Australia, Melbourne, Vic, AustraliaAbstract: The Orchard Sports Injury Classification System (OSICS is one of the world’s most commonly used systems for coding injury diagnoses in sports injury surveillance systems. Its major strengths are that it has wide usage, has codes specific to sports medicine and that it is free to use. Literature searches and stakeholder consultations were made to assess the uptake of OSICS and to develop new versions. OSICS was commonly used in the sports of football (soccer, Australian football, rugby union, cricket and tennis. It is referenced in international papers in three sports and used in four commercially available computerised injury management systems. Suggested injury categories for the major sports are presented. New versions OSICS 9 (three digit codes and OSICS 10.1 (four digit codes are presented. OSICS is a potentially helpful component of a comprehensive sports injury surveillance system, but many other components are required. Choices made in developing these components should ideally be agreed upon by groups of researchers in consensus statements.Keywords: sports injury classification, epidemiology, surveillance, coding

  17. Use of crowd source, Open Data and EO-based information in flood damage assessment: the 2014 urban flood in Genoa. (United States)

    Trasforini, Eva; De Angeli, Silvia; Fiorini, Mattia; Rossi, Lauro; Rudari, Roberto


    The need for rapid scenario-based flood damage assessment is urgent. The simulated assessment depends on three factors (flood scenarios, vulnerability and exposure), which cannot be always estimated with the same level of reliability. While flood hazard scenario maps based on hydraulic modeling of inundation is now a common practice, computation of damage assessment is often limited by the lack of exposure data and specific vulnerability curves. In this context, crowd sourced and Open Data in combination with EO-based information can play an important role in the characterization of the flood prone assets and more in general for Multi-Risk assessments. A simplified methodology for damage assessment based on these data sources was applied to the recent urban flash flood, which took place in October 9th, 2014 in Genoa. Hazard, exposure and damage were computed separately and validated against observations or official data. The total simulated damage was then compared with the official damage assessment obtained through citizen claims and municipal authorities surveys. Hazard mapping obtained by 2D dynamic models (complete shallow water equations) or more simplified 2D models (diffusive approximation of shallow water equations) showed negligible differences in terms of maximum water depth for the purpose of damage assessment and both well represent the real flood extent, as confirmed by the comparison with water marks registered during a field survey. Damage simulation seems much more sensitive to the assets characterization. Starting from existing vulnerability curve libraries, new curves were adapted to fit construction typologies of Genoa city center. Different categories were created taking into account most influencing construction typology and occupancy parameters. Two assets characterizations were created: the first one based on official governmental data used as benchmark; the other obtained through the combination of Open Data (such as Open Street Map, Street

  18. Methodological Issues in Analog Acceptability Research: Are Teachers' Acceptability Ratings of Assessment Methods Influenced by Experimental Design? (United States)

    Eckert, Tanya L.; Shapiro, Edward S.


    Explores the relationship between experimental design method and teacher-rated acceptability of two analog approaches for assessing academic skills problems. Comparisons indicate that curriculum-based assessment was consistently rated as a more acceptable method of assessment than published, norm-referenced tests. Results are discussed in relation…

  19. Overview of the program to assess the reliability of emerging nondestructive techniques open testing and study of flaw type effect on NDE response (United States)

    Meyer, Ryan M.; Komura, Ichiro; Kim, Kyung-cho; Zetterwall, Tommy; Cumblidge, Stephen E.; Prokofiev, Iouri


    In February 2012, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) executed agreements with VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, Nuclear Regulatory Authority of Japan (NRA, former JNES), Korea Institute of Nuclear Safety (KINS), Swedish Radiation Safety Authority (SSM), and Swiss Federal Nuclear Safety Inspectorate (ENSI) to establish the Program to Assess the Reliability of Emerging Nondestructive Techniques (PARENT). The goal of PARENT is to investigate the effectiveness of current emerging and perspective novel nondestructive examination procedures and techniques to find flaws in nickel-alloy welds and base materials. This is done by conducting a series of open and blind international round-robin tests on a set of large-bore dissimilar metal welds (LBDMW), small-bore dissimilar metal welds (SBDMW), and bottom-mounted instrumentation (BMI) penetration weld test blocks. The purpose of blind testing is to study the reliability of more established techniques and included only qualified teams and procedures. The purpose of open testing is aimed at a more basic capability assessment of emerging and novel technologies. The range of techniques applied in open testing varied with respect to maturity and performance uncertainty and were applied to a variety of simulated flaws. This paper will include a brief overview of the PARENT blind and open testing techniques and test blocks and present some of the blind testing results.

  20. A Prospective, Open Label, Observational Study to Assess the Safety and Efficacy of Herbal Cough Syrup Mykoff® in Patients Suffering from Cough of Varied Aetiologies


    Mangesh Bhalerao; Pradip Awale; Abhijeet Sawle; Dhananjay Sangle; Devendra B Sonawane; Vilas Chavan


    A prospective, open label, observational study was conducted at general outpatient clinic to assess the safety and efficacy of herbal cough syrup Mykoff® in patients suffering from cough of varied aetiologies. The patients of either sex, age > 3yrs, suffering from cough due to common cold, mild to moderate upper respiratory tract infections, allergic cough and smoker’s cough were enrolled. The safety was evaluated by means of an analysis of adverse events. In addition, efficacy and tolerabili...

  1. An assessment of the levels of phthalate esters and metals in the Muledane open dump, Thohoyandou, Limpopo Province, South Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Siebe Pitso


    Full Text Available Abstract Background This work reports the determination of the levels of phthalate esters (dimethyl phthalate (DMP, diethyl phthalate (DEP, dibutyl phthalate (DBP, diethyl hexyl phthalate (DEHP and metals (lead, cadmium, manganese, zinc, iron, calcium in composite soil samples. The soil samples were collected randomly within the Muledane open dump, Thohoyandou, Limpopo province, South Africa. Control samples were collected about 200 m away from the open dump. The phthalate esters were separated and determined by capillary gas chromatography with a flame ionization detector, whilst the metals were determined by atomic absorption spectrophotometry. Results Open dump values for the phthalate esters and metals to be generally higher in comparison to control samples for DMP, DEP, DBP and DEHP – the mean values calculated were 0.31 ± 0.12, 0.21 ± 0.05, 0.30 ± 0.07, and 0.03 ± 0.01 mg/kg, respectively, for the open dump soil samples. Nonetheless, the mean open dump values for lead, cadmium, manganese, zinc, iron and calcium were 0.07 ± 0.04, 0.003 ± 0.001, 5.02 ± 1.92, 0.31 ± 0.02, 11.62 ± 9.48 and 0.12 ± 0.13 mg/kg, respectively. The results were compared statistically. Conclusion Our results revealed that the discarding of wastes into the open dump is a potential source of soil contamination in the immediate vicinity and beyond, via dispersal. Increased levels of phthalate esters and metals in the soil pose a risk to public health, plants and animals. Sustained monitoring of these contaminants is recommended, in addition to upgrading the facility to a landfill.

  2. Assessing Adolescents' Communicative Self-Efficacy to Discuss Controversial Issues: Findings from a Randomized Study of the Word Generation Program (United States)

    Lin, Alex R.; Lawrence, Joshua F.; Snow, Catherine E.; Taylor, Karen S.


    Communicative self-efficacy serves as an important link between discussing controversial issues and civic engagement because confidence in one's discourse skills is important to managing conflicting perspectives and developing solutions to community-based problems. Freely available to schools, "Word Generation" is a cross-content…

  3. A Comparison of Methods to Correct Errors in Peer Assessment Ratings in Massive Open Online Courses%慕课学生互评误差纠正方法及其比较

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    熊瑶; 孙开键


    Peer assessment is one of the most important assessment methods in Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs), especially for open-ended assignments or projects. However, for the purpose of summative evaluation, peer assessment results are generally not trusted. This is because peer raters, who are novices, would produce more random errors and systematic biases in ratings than would expert raters, due to peer raters’lack of content expertise and rating experience. In this paper, two major approaches that are designed to improve the accuracy of peer assessment results are reviewed and compared. The first approach is designed to calibrate accuracy of individual peer raters before actual peer assessments so that differential weights can be assigned to raters based on accuracy. The second approach is designed to remedy peer rating errors post hoc. Differences in assumptions, parameterization and estimation methods, and implementation issues are discussed. The development of methods to improve MOOCs peer assessment results is still in its infancy. Most of the methods reviewed in this paper have yet to be implemented and evaluated in real-life applications. We hope the discussion and comparison of different methods in this paper will provide some theoretical and methodological background for further research into MOOC peer assessment.%学生互评是广泛用于慕课的一种评价方法,然而学生评估者本身存在比较大的评分误差。本文着重介绍和比较可用于纠正慕课学生互评误差的方法。这些方法总体分为两大类,即对学生评估者进行前期纠正的方法和对评分结果进行后期纠正的方法。文中总结的绝大部分方法目前都还没有被实际运用在慕课学生互评中。希望通过本文对慕课学生互评以及纠正学生评分误差方法的介绍,可以让更多的教育研究者参与对慕课的评价系统进行改善的研究。

  4. Assessment of Challenges in Developing Self-Instructional Course Materials at the National Open University of Nigeria (United States)

    Okonkwo, Charity Akuadi


    The National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) is Nigeria's only university dedicated to providing education through the use of distance instructional methods. So far, however, the lack of availability and poor distribution of course materials, which underpin instructional delivery at NOUN, continue to be hindrances to achieving the university's…

  5. Anisotropic expansion and SNIa: An open issue

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jose Beltrán Jiménez


    Full Text Available We review the appropriateness of using SNIa observations to detect potential signatures of anisotropic expansion in the Universe. We focus on Union2 and SNLS3 SNIa datasets and use the hemispherical comparison method to detect possible anisotropic features. Unlike some previous works where non-diagonal elements of the covariance matrix were neglected, we use the full covariance matrix of the SNIa data, thus obtaining more realistic and not underestimated errors. As a matter of fact, the significance of previously claimed detections of a preferred direction in the Union2 dataset completely disappears once we include the effects of using the full covariance matrix. Moreover, we also find that such a preferred direction is aligned with the orthogonal direction of the SDSS observational plane and this suggests a clear indication that the SDSS subsample of the Union2 dataset introduces a significant bias, making the detected preferred direction unphysical. We thus find that current SNIa surveys are inappropriate to test anisotropic features due to their highly non-homogeneous angular distribution in the sky. In addition, after removal of the highest inhomogeneous sub-samples, the number of SNIa is too low. Finally, we take advantage of the particular distribution of SNLS SNIa sub-sample in the SNLS3 data set, in which the observations were taken along four different directions. We fit each direction independently and find consistent results at the 1σ level. Although the likelihoods peak at relatively different values of Ωm, the low number of data along each direction gives rise to large errors so that the likelihoods are sufficiently broad as to overlap within 1σ.

  6. Assessment of Bilingual/Multilingual Pre-K-Grade 12 Students: A Critical Discussion of Past, Present, and Future Issues (United States)

    Gonzalez, Virginia


    This article examines major unresolved challenges in the assessment of pre-K-grade 12 multilingual students in US public schools. The ethnic educator approach advocates for a change of paradigms in assessment, one that abandons the medical model to incorporate socio-constructivist theoretical perspectives and pluralistic and progressive social…

  7. Assessing the Madigan Effort: Capitation, Purple Suits, CHAMPUS (Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Uniformed Services) and Other Issues. (United States)


    Personality disorder -- Schizoid 3 7234 1301-3797 2411 Personality disorder -- Explosive 1 5663 --- 5663 Personality disorder -- unspecified 3 1404 167-923 468...OTHER ISSUES 12. PERSONAL AUTHOR(S) William R. Cahill, MAJ, MS, Author 13a. TYPE OF REPORT 13b. TIME COVERED 14. DATE OF REPORT (Year, Month, Day) 15...46 CHAMPUS Management: Is It Possible .......... .47 The Test Itself: A Chronicle of Events and Personal Impressions ... ............. .51 III

  8. Response of a boreal forest to canopy opening: assessing vertical and lateral tree growth with multi-temporal lidar data. (United States)

    Vepakomma, Udayalakshmi; St-Onge, Benoit; Kneeshaw, Daniel


    Fine-scale height-growth response of boreal trees to canopy openings is difficult to measure from the ground, and there are important limitations in using stereophotogrammetry in defining gaps and determining individual crowns and height. However, precise knowledge on height growth response to different openings is critical for refining partial harvesting techniques. In this study, we question whether conifers and hardwoods respond equally in terms of sapling growth or lateral growth to openings. We also ask to what distance gaps affect tree growth into the forest. We use multi-temporal lidar to characterize tree/sapling height and lateral growth responses over five years to canopy openings and high resolution images to identify conifers and hardwoods. Species-class-wise height-growth patterns of trees/saplings in various neighborhood contexts were determined across a 6-km matrix of Canadian boreal mixed deciduous coniferous forests. We then use statistical techniques to probe how these growth responses vary by spatial location with respect to the gap edge. Results confirm that both mechanisms of gap closure contribute to the closing of canopies at a rate of 1.2% per annum. Evidence also shows that both hardwood and conifer gap edge trees have a similar lateral growth (average of 22 cm/yr) and similar rates of height growth irrespective of their location and initial height. Height growth of all saplings, however, was strongly dependent on their position within the gap and the size of the gap. Results suggest that hardwood and softwood saplings in gaps have greatest growth rates at distances of 0.5-2 m and 1.5-4 m from the gap edge and in openings smaller than 800 m2 and 250 m2, respectively. Gap effects on the height growth of trees in the intact forest were evident up to 30 m and 20 m from gap edges for hardwood and softwood overstory trees, respectively. Our results thus suggest that foresters should consider silvicultural techniques that create many small

  9. Assessing the Open Trenches in Screening Railway Ground-Borne Vibrations by Means of Artificial Neural Network

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gaetano Di Mino


    This paper deals with the study of the effect, in terms of reduction of vertical and horizontal displacements and velocities, of the open trenches. 2D FEM simulations have been performed and several open trench configurations have been analysed varying the main geometric features such as width and depth, distance from the rail, thickness of the soil layer over the rigid bedrock, type of the ground, ratio between the depth of the trench, and the thickness of the soil layer. For quantifying the influence of the above specified parameters in reducing ground-borne vibrations an analysis using artificial neural networks (ANNs has been carried out. Results show that among the geometric parameters the role of the depth of the trench is very significant; however the influence of the depth must be also evaluated in relation to the thickness of the soil layer.

  10. An assessment of overall open-loop "gain" of CO2-ventilation feedback control system in hypoxia. (United States)

    Masuyama, H; Akiyama, S; Honda, Y


    Overall open-loop gain of the CO2-ventilation feedback control system in hypoxia (GHCO2) was determined on 8 male and one female healthy subjects. They breathed in a closed circuit, and were subjected to the progressive hypoxia test. This procedure was first conducted without dead space (DS), then with 250, 500, and finally 750 ml DS, consecutively. GHCO2 was calculated by dividing the slope of the CO2 response curve (S) by that of the metabolic hyperbola (SL). GHCO2 was considerably larger than the overall open-loop gain of the O2-ventilation feedback control system (GO2) previously obtained. This was ascribed to the facts that S was larger than the slope of the hypoxia response curve, and that the absolute value of SL in GHCO2 was smaller than that in GO2.

  11. Assessing cumulative watershed stressors: Using LIDAR to assess the amount of open lands and young forest associated with in-channel erosion for North Shore tributaries (United States)

    Hydrologists with the US Forest Service have demonstrated the cumulative impacts of land use change, particularly additional open lands and young forest (< 15 yrs) on bank full flows and in-channel erosion. Mapping these impacts has been difficult due to challenges associated ...

  12. Assessment of the accuracy of coupled cluster perturbation theory for open-shell systems. I. Triples expansions

    CERN Document Server

    Eriksen, Janus Juul; Jørgensen, Poul; Gauss, Jürgen


    The accuracy with which total energies of open-shell species may be calculated using coupled cluster perturbative triples expansions is investigated. In particular, the acclaimed CCSD(T) model, in which a non-iterative correction for the effect of triple excitations is added to the coupled cluster singles and doubles (CCSD) energy, is compared to the second- through sixth-order models of the recently proposed CCSD(T-n) triples series for both unrestricted as well as restricted open-shell Hartree-Fock (UHF/ROHF) reference determinants. By comparing UHF- and ROHF-based statistical results for a test set of 18 atoms and small radicals with comparable RHF-based results, it is found that not only the numerical consistency of the CCSD(T) model, but also its fortuitous cancellation of errors for closed-shell systems break down in the transition from closed- to open-shell systems. For the higher-order models of the CCSD(T-n) series, however, no behavioral differences are found between the correlated descriptions of c...

  13. Open Educational Resources and Practices (United States)

    Blackall, Leigh


    This article looks at what constitutes an open educational resource and considers the issues and benefits to an educational institution that is moving to participate in open educational resource development and to adopt more open educational practices. It describes the initial steps in these directions being made by the Educational Development…

  14. Seven Issues Revisited

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Grønbæk, Kaj; Whitehead, Jim; De Bra, Paul


    It has been 15 years since the original presentation by Frank Halasz at Hypertext'87 on seven issues for the next generation of hypertext systems. These issues are: Search and Query Composites Virtual Structures Computation in/over hypertext network Versioning Collaborative Work Extensibility...... and Tailorability Since that time, these issues have formed the nucleus of multiple research agendas within the Hypertext community. Befitting this direction-setting role, the issues have been revisited several times, by Halasz in his 1991 Hypertext keynote talk, and by Randy Trigg in his 1996 Hypertext keynote...... five years later. Additionally, over the intervening 15 years, many research systems have addressed the original seven issues, and new research avenues have opened up. The goal of this panel is to begin the process of developing a new set of seven issues for the next generation of hypertext system...

  15. Regional assessment of urban impacts on landcover and open space finds a smart urban growth policy performs little better than business as usual. (United States)

    Thorne, James H; Santos, Maria J; Bjorkman, Jacquelyn H


    Assessment of landscape change is critical for attainment of regional sustainability goals. Urban growth assessments are needed because over half the global population now lives in cities, which impact biodiversity, ecosystem structure and ecological processes. Open space protection is needed to preserve these attributes, and provide the resources humans need. The San Francisco Bay Area, California, is challenged to accommodate a population increase of 3.07 million while maintaining the region's ecosystems and biodiversity. Our analysis of 9275 km² in the Bay Area links historic trends for three measures: urban growth, protected open space, and landcover types over the last 70 years to future 2050 projections of urban growth and open space. Protected open space totaled 348 km² (3.7% of the area) in 1940, and expanded to 2221 km² (20.2%) currently. An additional 1038 km² of protected open space is targeted (35.1%). Urban area historically increased from 396.5 km² to 2239 km² (24.1% of the area). Urban growth during this time mostly occurred at the expense of agricultural landscapes (62.9%) rather than natural vegetation. Smart Growth development has been advanced as a preferred alternative in many planning circles, but we found that it conserved only marginally more open space than Business-as-usual when using an urban growth model to portray policies for future urban growth. Scenarios to 2050 suggest urban development on non-urban lands of 1091, 956, or 179 km², under Business-as-usual, Smart Growth and Infill policy growth scenarios, respectively. The Smart Growth policy converts 88% of natural lands and agriculture used by Business-as-usual, while Infill used only 40% of those lands. Given the historic rate of urban growth, 0.25%/year, and limited space available, the Infill scenario is recommended. While the data may differ, the use of an historic and future framework to track these three variables can be easily applied to other metropolitan areas.

  16. Regional assessment of urban impacts on landcover and open space finds a smart urban growth policy performs little better than business as usual.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James H Thorne

    Full Text Available Assessment of landscape change is critical for attainment of regional sustainability goals. Urban growth assessments are needed because over half the global population now lives in cities, which impact biodiversity, ecosystem structure and ecological processes. Open space protection is needed to preserve these attributes, and provide the resources humans need. The San Francisco Bay Area, California, is challenged to accommodate a population increase of 3.07 million while maintaining the region's ecosystems and biodiversity. Our analysis of 9275 km² in the Bay Area links historic trends for three measures: urban growth, protected open space, and landcover types over the last 70 years to future 2050 projections of urban growth and open space. Protected open space totaled 348 km² (3.7% of the area in 1940, and expanded to 2221 km² (20.2% currently. An additional 1038 km² of protected open space is targeted (35.1%. Urban area historically increased from 396.5 km² to 2239 km² (24.1% of the area. Urban growth during this time mostly occurred at the expense of agricultural landscapes (62.9% rather than natural vegetation. Smart Growth development has been advanced as a preferred alternative in many planning circles, but we found that it conserved only marginally more open space than Business-as-usual when using an urban growth model to portray policies for future urban growth. Scenarios to 2050 suggest urban development on non-urban lands of 1091, 956, or 179 km², under Business-as-usual, Smart Growth and Infill policy growth scenarios, respectively. The Smart Growth policy converts 88% of natural lands and agriculture used by Business-as-usual, while Infill used only 40% of those lands. Given the historic rate of urban growth, 0.25%/year, and limited space available, the Infill scenario is recommended. While the data may differ, the use of an historic and future framework to track these three variables can be easily applied to other

  17. Assessment of Contaminants in the Wetlands and Open Waters of the Great Salt Lake, Utah, 1996-2000 (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — In 1996 and 1997, the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) Utah Field Office undertook a comprehensive assessment of contaminants at over 30 wetland...

  18. Assessment of open and incomplete bite correction by incisor overlap and optical density of polyvinyl siloxane bite registration. (United States)

    Shpack, Nir; Einy, Shmuel; Beni, Lea; Vardimon, Alexander D


    Open bite (OB) is a generalized term, which could incorporate subgroups that react differently to vertical correction. The objectives of the present study were to detect vertical treatment changes in incomplete bite (IB: inter-incisor overlap with no lower incisor contact with teeth or palate) and OB (no inter-incisor overlap) groups compared with a complete bite (CB: inter-incisor overlap with full lower incisor contact with teeth or palate) control group, to evaluate treatment response of the central and lateral incisors, and to study the vertico-sagittal interaction. Dental casts were taken at three time points, pre-treatment, post-treatment, and after one year of retention, from 54 Class II patients (22 males and 32 females with a mean age of 11 years 6 months) divided into three groups: CB (n = 21), IB (n = 18) and OB (n = 15). Measurements included incisor overlap (mm) and optical density (OD/mm2) of occlusal bite registration made of polyvinl siloxane. Both CB and IB groups demonstrated post-retention bite opening. However, bite opening in the CB group was three times greater than that in the IB group (e.g. lower lateral = -1.42 mm, 118 OD/mm2 versus -0.40 mm, 107 OD/mm2). Conversely, the OB group showed a significant (P < 0.001) bite closure (e.g. lower lateral = 1.30 mm, -377 OD/mm2). Overjet changes affected OD measurements, causing diversity in OD and millimetric measurements of the lateral incisors in the IB group. In conclusion, the OB group demonstrated a significant stable vertical correction; a post-treatment non-contact inter-incisor relationship was determined by a vertico-sagittal relapse; and full compensation of an IB was not possible.

  19. Final Report for the ZERT Project: Basic Science of Retention Issues, Risk Assessment & Measurement, Monitoring and Verification for Geologic Sequestration

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Spangler, Lee; Cunningham, Alfred; Lageson, David; Melick, Jesse; Gardner, Mike; Dobeck, Laura; Repasky, Kevin; Shaw, Joseph; Bajura, Richard; McGrail, B Peter; Oldenburg, Curtis M; Wagoner, Jeff; Pawar, Rajesh


    ZERT has made major contributions to five main areas of sequestration science: improvement of computational tools; measurement and monitoring techniques to verify storage and track migration of CO{sub 2}; development of a comprehensive performance and risk assessment framework; fundamental geophysical, geochemical and hydrological investigations of CO{sub 2} storage; and investigate innovative, bio-based mitigation strategies.

  20. Screening and Assessing Immigrant and Refugee Youth in School-Based Mental Health Programs. Issue Brief No. 1 (United States)

    Birman, Dina; Chan, Wing Yi


    This paper provides an overview of screening, identification, and assessment tools and processes that can be used by practitioners and researchers who care for immigrant and refugee youth. The authors focus particularly on those tools useful in school-based settings. First, the authors review mental health needs of immigrant and refugee youth and…

  1. Modifying Defining Issues Test (DIT) as a Tool for Assessing Secondary Students' Social-Emotional Competencies (United States)

    Ee, Jessie


    This paper discusses the use of an alternative instrument to assess the social-emotional competence (SEC) of secondary school students in Singapore. The instrument was used in a larger study to explore an approach to infuse social-emotional learning in the curriculum for children in school. The design of this research instrument is based on the…

  2. On the reading of the structural behavior of old masonry: The issue of the seismic assessment of archeological ruins (United States)

    Fonti, Roberta


    This paper addresses the problem of assessing the resistance of ancient Roman structures to normal lateral forces. This subject was examined by applying theoretical models, especially for historical masonry. Procedure Guidelines for the Assessment and Reduction of Seismic Risk of Cultural Heritage [1] were followed here. A lack of information exists within the models for seismic safety assessment. They are restricted to four main categories, which do not mention structures that lack integrity (FIGURE 1, a). Archeological findings, such as masonry elements, often lack integrity and suffer from instability of isolated parties under seismic actions. Nevertheless, a realistic assessment of their safety level is crucial for their survival, especially in regions prone to earthquakes. The attainment of the necessary safety targets is difficult to achieve without reinforcement. The practice of strengthening archeological assets avoids possible collapses. Contrarily, it is responsible for irreversible changes to their historical features regardless of their historical value. However, selecting an appropriate level of building knowledge and design life can avoid the usage of extensive strengthening techniques. An illustrative example is reported in this paper.

  3. Opening up codings?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Steensig, Jakob; Heinemann, Trine


    We welcome Tanya Stivers’s discussion (Stivers, 2015/this issue) of coding social interaction and find that her descriptions of the processes of coding open up important avenues for discussion, among other things of the precise ad hoc considerations that researchers need to bear in mind, both when....... Instead we propose that the promise of coding-based research lies in its ability to open up new qualitative questions....

  4. Disappearing Act: Persistence and Attrition of Uniform Resource Locators (URLs) in an Open Access Medical Journal (United States)

    Nagaraja, Aragudige; Joseph, Shine A.; Polen, Hyla H.; Clauson, Kevin A.


    Purpose: The aim of this paper is to assess and catalogue the magnitude of URL attrition in a high-impact, open access (OA) general medical journal. Design/methodology/approach: All "Public Library of Science Medicine (PLoS Medicine)" articles for 2005-2007 were evaluated and the following items were assessed: number of entries per issue; type of…

  5. An empirical study on open position risk assessment using VAR and regression analysis: A case study of Iranian banking industry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elmira Mahmoudzadeh


    Full Text Available During the past few years, there have been tremendous fluctuations on different currencies. For instance, European common currency, Euro, has be fluctuated between 0.60 to 0.9 against US dollar. Therefore, it is important to study the behavior of currency valuations using different techniques. In this paper, we present an empirical study to measure the impact of different items on risk of foreign currency using value at risk (VaR and regression methods. The proposed model of this paper investigates whether the risk of open positions of six foreign currencies including US dollar, Euro, British Pound, Switzerland Frank, Norwegian Kroner and United Emirate Dirham increase during the time horizon. The proposed study of this paper uses historical daily prices of these currencies for a fiscal year of 2011 in one of private banks located in Iran and measures the relative risk. The results of the implementation of two methods of VaR and linear regression indicate that the risk of open positions increases during the time horizon.

  6. Perfluorinated Compounds in Greenhouse and Open Agricultural Producing Areas of Three Provinces of China: Levels, Sources and Risk Assessment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yanwei Zhang


    Full Text Available Field investigations on perfluoroalkyl acid (PFAA levels in various environmental matrixes were reported, but there is still a lack of PFAA level data for agricultural environments, especially agricultural producing areas, so we collected soil, irrigation water and agricultural product samples from agricultural producing areas in the provinces of Liaoning, Shandong and Sichuan in China. The background pollution from instruments was removed and C4–C18 PFAAs were detected by LC-MS/MS. The concentrations of PFAAs in the top and deep layers of soil were compared, and the levels of PFAAs in different agricultural environments (greenhouses and open agriculture were analyzed. We found the order of PFAA levels by province was Shandong > Liaoning > Sichuan. A descending trend of PFAA levels from top to deep soil and open to greenhouse agriculture was shown and perfluorobutanoic acid (PFBA was considered as a marker for source analysis. Bean vegetables contribute highly to the overall PFAA load in vegetables. A significant correlation was shown between irrigation water and agricultural products. The EDI (estimated daily intake from vegetables should be of concern in China.

  7. Environmental impact assessment (EIA) in development cooperation. A presentation of development challenges and research issues in developing countries and donor agencies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kristoffersen, Harald


    This document discusses some development challenges and research needs related to environmental impact assessment (EIA) in development cooperation. After a general introduction to basic principles of EIA, the document deals with some general conditions for EIA in developing countries and in donor agencies. Through a presentation of experiences with EIA from selected donor agencies (with emphasis on NORAD) the report ends up with focusing on some research issues that may come up with recommendations for improving EIA practices in developing countries and donor agencies. 37 refs., 6 figs., 3 refs.

  8. Human Health Risk Assessment and Safety Threshold of Harmful Trace Elements in the Soil Environment of the Wulantuga Open-Cast Coal Mine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jianli Jia


    Full Text Available In this study, soil samples were collected from a large-scale open-cast coal mine area in Inner Mongolia, China. Arsenic (As, cadmium (Cd, beryllium (Be and nickel (Ni in soil samples were detected using novel collision/reaction cell technology (CCT with inductively-coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS; collectively ICP-CCT-MS after closed-vessel microwave digestion. Human health risk from As, Cd, Be and Ni was assessed via three exposure pathways—inhalation, skin contact and soil particle ingestion. The comprehensive carcinogenic risk from As in Wulantuga open-cast coal mine soil is 6.29–87.70-times the acceptable risk, and the highest total hazard quotient of As in soils in this area can reach 4.53-times acceptable risk levels. The carcinogenic risk and hazard quotient of Cd, Be and Ni are acceptable. The main exposure route of As from open-cast coal mine soils is soil particle ingestion, accounting for 76.64% of the total carcinogenic risk. Considering different control values for each exposure pathway, the minimum control value (1.59 mg/kg could be selected as the strict reference safety threshold for As in the soil environment of coal-chemical industry areas. However, acceptable levels of carcinogenic risk are not unanimous; thus, the safety threshold identified here, calculated under a 1.00 × 10−6 acceptable carcinogenic risk level, needs further consideration.

  9. Assessment of Challenges in Developing Self-Instructional Course Materials at the National Open University of Nigeria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charity Akuadi Okonkwo


    Full Text Available The National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN is Nigeria’s only university dedicated to providing education through the use of distance instructional methods. So far, however, the lack of availability and poor distribution of course materials, which underpin instructional delivery at NOUN, continue to be hindrances to achieving the university’s vision and mission. There are delays and difficulties in developing and distributing materials to students and Study Centres. Many pioneer students cannot graduate because of this challenge. This paper examines the process of developing self-instructional course materials at NOUN. It reflects on the challenges associated with the quantity, quality, and timely production of course materials, labelled “the hills, the wills, and the skills” obstacles. The paper concludes that there is a need for better professional development in order to provide efficient ODL delivery.

  10. Assessment of Geometry and In-Flow Effects on Contra-Rotating Open Rotor Broadband Noise Predictions (United States)

    Zawodny, Nikolas S.; Nark, Douglas M.; Boyd, D. Douglas, Jr.


    Application of previously formulated semi-analytical models for the prediction of broadband noise due to turbulent rotor wake interactions and rotor blade trailing edges is performed on the historical baseline F31/A31 contra-rotating open rotor configuration. Simplified two-dimensional blade element analysis is performed on cambered NACA 4-digit airfoil profiles, which are meant to serve as substitutes for the actual rotor blade sectional geometries. Rotor in-flow effects such as induced axial and tangential velocities are incorporated into the noise prediction models based on supporting computational fluid dynamics (CFD) results and simplified in-flow velocity models. Emphasis is placed on the development of simplified rotor in-flow models for the purpose of performing accurate noise predictions independent of CFD information. The broadband predictions are found to compare favorably with experimental acoustic results.

  11. Assessment of particle-tracking models for dispersed particle-laden flows implemented in OpenFOAM and ANSYS FLUENT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Franziska Greifzu


    Full Text Available In the present study two benchmark problems for turbulent dispersed particle-laden flow are investigated with computational fluid dynamics (CFD. How the CFD programs OpenFOAM and ANSYS FLUENT model these flows is tested and compared. The numerical results obtained with Lagrangian–Eulerian (LE point-particle (PP models for Reynolds-averaged Navier–Stokes (RANS simulations of the fluid flow in steady state and transient modes are compared with the experimental data available in the literature. The effect of the dispersion model on the particle motion is investigated in particular, as well as the order of coupling between the continuous carrier phase and the dispersed phase. First, a backward-facing step (BFS case is validated. As a second case, the confined bluff body (CBB is used. The simulated fluid flows correspond well with the experimental data for both test cases. The results for the dispersed solid phase reveal a good accordance between the simulation results and the experiments. It seems that particle dispersion is slightly under-predicted when ANSYS FLUENT is used, whereas the applied solver in OpenFOAM overestimates the dispersion somewhat. Only minor differences between the coupling schemes are detected due to the low volume fractions and mass loadings that are investigated. In the BFS test case the importance of the spatial dimension of the numerical model is demonstrated. Even if it is reasonable to assume a two-dimensional fluid flow structure, it is crucial to simulate the turbulent particle-laden flow with a three-dimensional model since the turbulent dispersion of the particles is three-dimensional.

  12. Prospective Assessment of Chronic Multisymptom Illness Reporting Possibly Associated with Open-Air Burn Pit Smoke Exposure in Iraq (United States)


    dioxide, sulfur dioxide, and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons are being released in the smoke from the fires, and many are known carcinogens and may cause...designed to assess symp- toms, illnesses, exposures, and behaviors (such as tobacco and alco- hol use) among US military service members, including all

  13. Evaluate, assess, treat: development and evaluation of the EAT framework to increase effective communication regarding sensitive oral-systemic health issues. (United States)

    DeBate, R D; Cragun, D; Gallentine, A A; Severson, H H; Shaw, T; Cantwell, C; Christiansen, S; Koerber, A; Hendricson, W; Tomar, S L; McCormack Brown, K; Tedesco, L A


    Oral healthcare providers are likely to encounter a number of sensitive oral/systemic health issues whilst interacting with patients. The purpose of the current study was to develop and evaluate a framework aimed at oral healthcare providers to engage in active secondary prevention of eating disorders (i.e. early detection of oral manifestations of disordered eating behaviours, patient approach and communication, patient-specific oral treatment, and referral to care) for patients presenting with signs of disordered eating behaviours. The EAT Framework was developed based on the Brief Motivational Interviewing (B-MI) conceptual framework and comprises three continuous steps: Evaluating, Assessing, and Treating. Using a group-randomized control design, 11 dental hygiene (DH) and seven dental (D) classes from eight institutions were randomized to either the intervention or control conditions. Both groups completed pre- and post-intervention assessments. Hierarchical linear models were conducted to measure the effects of the intervention whilst controlling for baseline levels. Statistically significant improvements from pre- to post-intervention were observed in the Intervention group compared with the Control group on knowledge of eating disorders and oral findings, skills-based knowledge, and self-efficacy (all P oral/systemic health issues. Because the EAT Framework was developed by translating B-MI principles and procedures, the framework can be easily adopted as a non-confrontational method for patient communication.

  14. Use of Clearance Indexes to Assess Waste Disposal Issues for the HYLIFE-II Inertial Fusion Energy Power Plant Design

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Reyes, S; Latkowski, J F; Sanz, J


    Traditionally, waste management studies for fusion energy have used the Waste Disposal Rating (WDR) to evaluate if radioactive material from irradiated structures could qualify for shallow land burial. However, given the space limitations and the negative public perception of large volumes of waste, there is a growing international motivation to develop a fusion waste management system that maximizes the amount of material that can be cleared or recycled. In this work, we present an updated assessment of the waste management options for the HYLIFE-II inertial fusion energy (IFE) power plant, using the concept of Clearance Index (CI) for radioactive waste disposal. With that purpose, we have performed a detailed neutronics analysis of the HYLIFE-II design, using the TART and ACAB computer codes for neutron transport and activation, respectively. Whereas the traditional version of ACAB only provided the user with the WDR as an index for waste considerations, here we have modified the code to calculate Clearance Indexes using the current International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) clearance limits for radiological waste disposal. The results from the analysis are used to perform an assessment of the waste management options for the HYLIFE-II IFE design.

  15. [Issues and current limits for immunohistochemical assessment of PD-L1 status in bronchial biopsies]. (United States)

    Hofman, Véronique; Ilie, Marius; Long, Elodie; Butori, Catherine; Lassalle, Sandra; Washetine, Kevin; Lalve, Salomé; Marquette, Charles-Hugo; Soria, Jean-Charles; Hofman, Paul


    Immunotherapy targeting the PD-L1/PD-1 axis has shown recently some promising results in metastatic lung cancer patients. This treatment seems to be more effective when a high expression of PD-L1 is detected by immunohistochemistry in bronchial biopsies. In this regard, this targeted therapy will be proposed soon in metastatic lung cancer patients. This immunotherapy could be dependent to the immunohistochemical (IHC) assessment of PD-L1 expression, thus considered as a companion diagnostic test. This near perspective poses challenges with regard to the positivity threshold value for PD-L1 expression before therapy administration, the positive cellular compartment (tumour cells and/or immune cells), the percentage of positive cells and the clone which is used. A couple of patients have a good response to treatment targeting the PD-1/PD-L1 axis despite the absence or a weak PD-L1 expression. However the assessment of PD-L1 expression by immunohistochemistry will be the only mandatory approach before therapeutic strategies targeting the PD1/PD-L1 axis for lung cancer patients. In this review, the main challenges of using PD-L1 immunohistochemistry as a potential companion diagnostic tool for metastatic lung cancer patient immunotherapy will be discussed.

  16. Open3DQSAR

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tosco, Paolo; Balle, Thomas


    Open3DQSAR is a freely available open-source program aimed at chemometric analysis of molecular interaction fields. MIFs can be imported from different sources (GRID, CoMFA/CoMSIA, quantum-mechanical electrostatic potential or electron density grids) or generated by Open3DQSAR itself. Much focus...... has been put on automation through the implementation of a scriptable interface, as well as on high computational performance achieved by algorithm parallelization. Flexibility and interoperability with existing molecular modeling software make Open3DQSAR a powerful tool in pharmacophore assessment...

  17. Assessing farm tractor incidents and awareness levels of operators for tractor safety issues in the Hatay province of Turkey. (United States)

    Keskin, S Görücü; Keskin, M; Soysal, Y


    Studies and statistical data on safety issues related to farm tractors and machinery are very limited in developing countries, including Turkey. This study was carried out to investigate tractor-related incidents in the Hatay province, located in the mid-south of Turkey. A questionnaire was conducted with 107 tractor operators using face-to-face interviews. Data were evaluated according to the incident type, machinery involved, and mechanism of injury or fatality. A total of 101 incidents were reported by 77 of the 107 respondents. Most of the incidents were due to tractor rollovers (65.4%), 14.8% of the incidents were due to entanglement of body parts in moving machinery, and 12.9% involved crashing into other vehicles or obstacles. The leading cause of the incidents was personal mistakes (60.4%). Fatalities resulted from 25.7% of the incidents, while 45.5% of the incidents caused non-fatal injuries. Only 5.6% of the tractors had a ROPS-enclosed cab. The percentage of ROPS-equipped tractors was 19.6%, while 41.3% of the tractors had a shade cover and 33.6% had no protective structure. Only one of the respondents used a seatbelt, although 44.9% of them stated that seatbelts should be used. It was also found that only 13.5% of the operators had training in work safety, while 95.1% stated that incidents might be reduced if people were trained. Development of appropriate policies and training programs are needed for safer operation of agricultural machinery to reduce injuries and fatalities due to farm accidents.

  18. Issues in assessing products for the treatment of hemophilia – the intersection between efficacy, economics, and ethics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Farrugia A


    Full Text Available Albert Farrugia,1,2 Declan Noone,3 Uwe Schlenkrich,4 Steffen Schlenkrich,5 Brian O'Mahony,3 Josephine Cassar6 1School of Surgery, QEII Medical Centre, The University of Western Australia (M509, Crawley, WA, Australia; 2College of Medicine, Medicine and Environment, Australian National University, Canberra, WA, Australia; 3Irish Haemophilia Society, Dublin, Ireland; 4Deutsche Hämophiliegesellschaft (DHG, Hamburg, Germany; 5Am Holzbiel, Erfurt-Töttleben, Germany; 6Faculty of Health, University of Canberra, Canberra, WA, Australia Abstract: Following the obviation of the pathogen safety threats posed by previous generations of clotting factor concentrates for the treatment of hemophilia, the principal issue facing the patient community is timely access to adequate supplies of continuously improving therapies. The application of evidence-based medicine has enhanced the basis of hemophilia therapy, while resulting in some challenges to patient care. Increasingly, the criteria used for the approval and payment of treatment products by regulatory and reimbursement agencies, respectively, are becoming inflexible and unrealistic. This is occurring particularly in the requirements for demonstrating product efficacy. Concurrently, emerging evidence of the interpatient variability in the clinical response to therapy has led to the proposed personalization of therapeutic regimens. Possible impediments to optimal care include competitive tensions among suppliers who seek to gain label claims for reimbursement purposes, which result in clinical trial designs of, arguably, unethical design, carried out in poor countries. We synthesize these converging developments to suggest some changes to the current hemophilia treatment paradigm, which should make it more patient-centric and enable speedier access to new therapies. Keywords: hemophilia, treatment products, clinical trials, standards, reimbursement

  19. Heat, Human Performance, and Occupational Health: A Key Issue for the Assessment of Global Climate Change Impacts. (United States)

    Kjellstrom, Tord; Briggs, David; Freyberg, Chris; Lemke, Bruno; Otto, Matthias; Hyatt, Olivia


    Ambient heat exposure is a well-known health hazard, which reduces human performance and work capacity at heat levels already common in tropical and subtropical areas. Various health problems have been reported. Increasing heat exposure during the hottest seasons of each year is a key feature of global climate change. Heat exhaustion and reduced human performance are often overlooked in climate change health impact analysis. Later this century, many among the four billion people who live in hot areas worldwide will experience significantly reduced work capacity owing to climate change. In some areas, 30-40% of annual daylight hours will become too hot for work to be carried out. The social and economic impacts will be considerable, with global gross domestic product (GDP) losses greater than 20% by 2100. The analysis to date is piecemeal. More analysis of climate change-related occupational health impact assessments is greatly needed.

  20. Assessment of producers' response to Salmonella biosecurity issues and uptake of advice on laying hen farms in England and Wales. (United States)

    Gosling, R J; Martelli, F; Wintrip, A; Sayers, A R; Wheeler, K; Davies, R H


    High standards of biosecurity are known to reduce the risk of disease outbreaks; however, uptake of advice and implementation of biosecurity measures are dependent on many factors. This study assessed the uptake of targeted biosecurity advice by 60 laying hen farms provided during biosecurity audit visits. Advice was provided as bullet point cards focusing on specific areas identified as benefitting from improvement. These covered site entrance, site tidiness, vaccination, boot hygiene, hand hygiene, house tidiness, rodent control, fly control, red mite control and cleaning and disinfection between flocks. Background knowledge of Salmonella and biosecurity and farmers' willingness and intent to implement additional measures were assessed. About 50% of the principal decision-makers had basic background knowledge of Salmonella, with 22% considered well informed; almost all agreed that biosecurity could impact on Salmonella control and many appeared willing to implement additional biosecurity measures. Sixty-three per cent of study farms were categorised using the Defra Farmer Segmentation Model as Modern Family Businesses (MFBs), with 7-11% of farms being categorised as Custodian, Lifestyle Choice, Pragmatist or Challenged Enterprise; however, categorisation, did not determine uptake of advice. The most frequently used advice cards were boot hygiene, red mite control, hand hygiene, site entrance and cleaning and disinfection; uptake of advice ranged from 54 to 80% depending on the advice card. Uptake of advice by the farmers was encouraging, especially considering it was being provided by people other than their usual source of biosecurity information. Those who did not implement the recommended measures cited cost, difficulty of enforcement and practicality as the main reasons. However, the positive uptake of advice and implementation of recommended measures by many farmers demonstrates that targeted advice, discussed face to face with farmers, on a small number of

  1. La Familia: methodological issues in the assessment of perinatal social support for Mexicanas living in the United States. (United States)

    Clark, L


    Do Mexicanas receive social support from a close network of family and friends during the perinatal period? To answer this question, a longitudinal ethnographic study followed 28 urban Mexican-origin women living in the US from their last trimester of pregnancy through their first month post-partum. A total of 93 interviews with Mexicanas focused on health and social support. All of the women lived in a large western city in the US but varied in their acculturation and income levels. Analyses identified four social support themes from women's experience (the emic analysis) and four social support typologies from the researcher (etic) analyses. The kinds of support women described as emanating from their support networks were inductively identified as Helping with Daily Hassles, Showing Love and Understanding, Being There for Me, and My Family Failing Me. Approximately half of the women reported densely supportive networks. The other women were disconnected from their support networks, or dealt with antagonism or instability in their networks. Women's perceptions of social support differed from the judgements made by the researcher about received support. Specifically, women perceived more network members in the supportive category than did the researcher by a factor of 1.4, and fewer network members in the disconnected category by a factor of 0.7. From an emic perspective, women listed only half as many antagonistic network members compared to the etic analysis (a factor of 0.50). These emic/etic discrepancies complicate clinical assessment of social support, but suggest that data on social support should be collected as part of the clinical processes of perinatal risking. To enhance assessment of social support, a clinically relevant guide is proposed for use by practitioners caring for Mexicanas in the perinatal period.

  2. Amateur or Professional: Assessing the Expertise of Major Contributors in OpenStreetMap Based on Contributing Behaviors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anran Yang


    Full Text Available Volunteered geographic information (VGI projects, such as OpenStreetMap (OSM, provide an alternative way to produce geographic data. Research has proven that the resulting data in some areas are of decent quality, which guarantees their usability in various applications. Though these achievements are normally attributed to the huge heterogeneous community mainly consisting of amateurs, it is in fact a small percentage of major contributors who make nearly all contributions. In this paper, we investigate the contributing behaviors of these contributors to deduce whether they are actually professionals. Various indicators are used to depict the behaviors on three themes: practice, skill and motivation, aiming to identify solid evidence for expertise. Our case studies show that most major contributors in Germany, France and the United Kingdom are hardly amateurs, but are professionals instead. These contributors have rich experiences on geographical data editing, have a decent grasp of professional software and work on the project with enthusiasm and concentration. It is less unexpected that they can create geographic data of high quality.

  3. Economical assessment of the design, construction and operation of open-bed biofilters for waste gas treatment. (United States)

    Prado, O J; Gabriel, D; Lafuente, J


    A protocol was developed with the purpose of assessing the main costs implied in the set-up, operation and maintenance of a waste gas-treating conventional biofilter. The main operating parameters considered in the protocol were the empty bed residence time and the gas flow rate. A wide variety of investment and operating costs were considered. In order to check its reliability, the protocol was applied to a number of scenarios, with biofilter volumes ranging from 8.3 to 4000 m(3). Results show that total annualized costs were between 20,000 and 220,000 euro/year and directly dependent, among other factors, on the size of the system. Total investment and operating costs for average-size compost biofilters were around 60,000 euro and 20,000 euro/year, respectively, which are concordant with actual costs. Also, a sensitivity analysis was performed in order to assess the relative influence of a series of selected costs. Results prove that operating costs are those that influence the total annual costs to a higher extent. Also, packing material replacement costs contribute significantly to the total yearly costs in biofilters with a volume higher than 800 m(3). Among operating costs, the electricity consumption is the main influencing factor in biofilters with a gas flow rate above 50,000 m(3)/h, while labor costs are critical at lower gas flow rates. In addition, the use of a variety of packing materials commonly employed in biofiltration was assessed. According to the results obtained, special attention should be paid to the packing material selected, as it is the main parameter influencing the medium replacement costs, and one of the main factors affecting investment costs.

  4. Open Data and Beyond

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frederika Welle Donker


    Full Text Available In recent years, there has been an increasing trend of releasing public sector information as open data. Governments worldwide see the potential benefits of opening up their data. The potential benefits are more transparency, increased governmental efficiency and effectiveness, and external benefits, including societal and economic benefits. The private sector also recognizes potential benefits of making their datasets available as open data. One such company is Liander, an energy network administrator in the Netherlands. Liander views open data as a contributing factor to energy conservation. However, to date there has been little research done into the actual effects of open data. This research has developed a monitoring framework to assess the effects of open data, and has applied the framework to Liander’s small-scale energy consumption dataset.

  5. Opening Talk: Opening Talk (United States)

    Doebner, H.-D.


    ) with 170 participants and 89 contributions in the proceedings; it was centred on the foundations and extensions of quantum theory, on quantisation methods and on q-algebras. In QTS2-2001 in Cracow (Poland) with 175 participants and 81 contributions; the main topics were applications of quantum mechanics, representations of algebras and group theoretical techniques in physics. In the symposium QTS3-2003 in Cincinnati (USA) with 145 participants and 92 contributions, quantum field theory, loop quantum gravity, string and brane theory was discussed. The focus in QTS4-2005 in Varna (Bulgaria) with 228 participant and 105 contributions, was on conformal field theory, quantum gravity, noncommutative geometry and quantum groups. Three proceedings volumes were published with World Scientific and one volume with Heron Press. The promising and interesting programme for QTS5-2007 in Valladolid (Spain) attracted more than 200 participants; the contributions will be published in a special issue of Journal of Physics A: Mathematical and Theoretical and a volume of Journal of Physics: Conference Series. This shows the wide scope of symmetry in connection with quantum physics and related sciences. In the background of the symposia series is the Conference Board with presently 13 members. The Board encourages scientists and Institutions to present detailed proposals for a QTS symposium; it agrees to one proposal and is prepared to assist in matters of organisation; the local organisers are responsible for the scientific programme and for the organisation, including the budget. The Board decided that the next symposium QTS6 will be held 2009 at the University of Kentucky in Lexington (USA); Alan Shapere is the chairman of the Local Organizing committee. In the name of all of you I express my appreciation and my thanks to the members of the Local Organizing Committee of QTS5, especially to Mariano del Olmo. The programme is outstanding; it covers recent and new developments in our field

  6. Track-a-worm, an open-source system for quantitative assessment of C. elegans locomotory and bending behavior.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sijie Jason Wang

    Full Text Available A major challenge of neuroscience is to understand the circuit and gene bases of behavior. C. elegans is commonly used as a model system to investigate how various gene products function at specific tissue, cellular, and synaptic foci to produce complicated locomotory and bending behavior. The investigation generally requires quantitative behavioral analyses using an automated single-worm tracker, which constantly records and analyzes the position and body shape of a freely moving worm at a high magnification. Many single-worm trackers have been developed to meet lab-specific needs, but none has been widely implemented for various reasons, such as hardware difficult to assemble, and software lacking sufficient functionality, having closed source code, or using a programming language that is not broadly accessible. The lack of a versatile system convenient for wide implementation makes data comparisons difficult and compels other labs to develop new worm trackers. Here we describe Track-A-Worm, a system rich in functionality, open in source code, and easy to use. The system includes plug-and-play hardware (a stereomicroscope, a digital camera and a motorized stage, custom software written to run with Matlab in Windows 7, and a detailed user manual. Grayscale images are automatically converted to binary images followed by head identification and placement of 13 markers along a deduced spline. The software can extract and quantify a variety of parameters, including distance traveled, average speed, distance/time/speed of forward and backward locomotion, frequency and amplitude of dominant bends, overall bending activities measured as root mean square, and sum of all bends. It also plots worm travel path, bend trace, and bend frequency spectrum. All functionality is performed through graphical user interfaces and data is exported to clearly-annotated and documented Excel files. These features make Track-A-Worm a good candidate for implementation in

  7. Trapping the Pasture Odorscape Using Open-Air Solid-Phase Micro Extraction, a Tool to Assess Grassland Value.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Agnès Cornu

    Full Text Available Besides supporting cattle feeding, grasslands are home to a diversity of plants and insects that interact with each other by emitting volatile compounds. The aim of this work was to develop a method to determine permanent grassland odorscape and relate it to flower-visiting insects. Two grasslands were chosen for their contrasting levels of botanical diversity, resulting from differing grazing managements. Measurements were made over two periods of three consecutive days at the beginning of grazing, and just after the cows had left the plots. Volatile compounds were trapped using solid-phase microextraction (SPME fibers exposed eight hours a day in three exclosures per plot, and then analyzed by gas-chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS. Insects were trapped using pan traps and a net, sorted and counted. The open air SPME method yielded volatile compound profiles that were richer than maize field profiles, comprising the common green leaf volatiles (GLV and more specific ones. Differences between the odorscapes of the two grasslands were found, but they were not as marked as expected from their botanical composition. By contrast, there were sharp differences between the two periods, resulting from the combined effects of changes in weather conditions, plant phenological stage and grazing progress. Several correlations between insect counts and volatile compounds were found. Although their correlation coefficients were low, some of them were confirmed when tested by Spearman rank correlation, and could be logically explained. This method of grassland odorscape deserves to be developed because it can provide information on many aspects of grassland function and on the stresses that grassland plants undergo.

  8. Assessing Resistance to Change During Shifting from Legacy to Open Web-Based Systems in the Air Transport Industry (United States)

    Brewer, Denise

    The air transport industry (ATI) is a dynamic, communal, international, and intercultural environment in which the daily operations of airlines, airports, and service providers are dependent on information technology (IT). Many of the IT legacy systems are more than 30 years old, and current regulations and the globally distributed workplace have brought profound changes to the way the ATI community interacts. The purpose of the study was to identify the areas of resistance to change in the ATI community and the corresponding factors in change management requirements that minimize product development delays and lead to a successful and timely shift from legacy to open web-based systems in upgrading ATI operations. The research questions centered on product development team processes as well as the members' perceived need for acceptance of change. A qualitative case study approach rooted in complexity theory was employed using a single case of an intercultural product development team dispersed globally. Qualitative data gathered from questionnaires were organized using Nvivo software, which coded the words and themes. Once coded, themes emerged identifying the areas of resistance within the product development team. Results of follow-up interviews with team members suggests that intercultural relationship building prior to and during project execution; focus on common team goals; and, development of relationships to enhance interpersonal respect, understanding and overall communication help overcome resistance to change. Positive social change in the form of intercultural group effectiveness evidenced in increased team functioning during major project transitions is likely to result when global managers devote time to cultural understanding.

  9. Track-a-worm, an open-source system for quantitative assessment of C. elegans locomotory and bending behavior. (United States)

    Wang, Sijie Jason; Wang, Zhao-Wen


    A major challenge of neuroscience is to understand the circuit and gene bases of behavior. C. elegans is commonly used as a model system to investigate how various gene products function at specific tissue, cellular, and synaptic foci to produce complicated locomotory and bending behavior. The investigation generally requires quantitative behavioral analyses using an automated single-worm tracker, which constantly records and analyzes the position and body shape of a freely moving worm at a high magnification. Many single-worm trackers have been developed to meet lab-specific needs, but none has been widely implemented for various reasons, such as hardware difficult to assemble, and software lacking sufficient functionality, having closed source code, or using a programming language that is not broadly accessible. The lack of a versatile system convenient for wide implementation makes data comparisons difficult and compels other labs to develop new worm trackers. Here we describe Track-A-Worm, a system rich in functionality, open in source code, and easy to use. The system includes plug-and-play hardware (a stereomicroscope, a digital camera and a motorized stage), custom software written to run with Matlab in Windows 7, and a detailed user manual. Grayscale images are automatically converted to binary images followed by head identification and placement of 13 markers along a deduced spline. The software can extract and quantify a variety of parameters, including distance traveled, average speed, distance/time/speed of forward and backward locomotion, frequency and amplitude of dominant bends, overall bending activities measured as root mean square, and sum of all bends. It also plots worm travel path, bend trace, and bend frequency spectrum. All functionality is performed through graphical user interfaces and data is exported to clearly-annotated and documented Excel files. These features make Track-A-Worm a good candidate for implementation in other labs.

  10. A Novel Algorithm for the Assessment of Blood-Brain Barrier Permeability Suggests That Brain Topical Application of Endothelin-1 Does Not Cause Early Opening of the Barrier in Rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Jorks


    Full Text Available There are a number of different experimental methods for ex vivo assessment of blood-brain barrier (BBB opening based on Evans blue dye extravasation. However, these methods require many different steps to prepare the brain and need special equipment for quantification. We here report a novel, simple, and fast semiquantitative algorithm to assess BBB integrity ex vivo. The method is particularly suitable for cranial window experiments, since it keeps the spatial information about where the BBB opened. We validated the algorithm using sham controls and the established model of brain topical application of the bile salt dehydrocholate for early BBB disruption. We then studied spreading depolarizations in the presence and the absence of the vasoconstrictor endothelin-1 and found no evidence of early BBB opening (three-hour time window. The algorithm can be used, for example, to assess BBB permeability ex vivo in combination with dynamic in vivo studies of BBB opening.

  11. An in vitro assessment of MRI issues at 3-Tesla for antimicrobial, silver-containing wound dressings. (United States)

    Escher, Kirin B; Shellock, Frank G


    Although no reports of adverse events have been published to date, the presence of metallic dressing ingredients may present an magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) safety concern for patients using silver-containing wound dressings. The purpose of this in vitro study was to test magnetic field interactions (ie, translational attraction and torque), heating, artifacts, and conductivity (ie, electrical resistance) when using MRI at 3-Tesla for two (nonborder and border) silver-containing wound dressings. The results indicated the dressings displayed no magnetic field interactions (deflection angle 0˚; no torque), and in each case, MRI-related heating effects were at the same levels as the background temperature increases (ie, <1.8˚C). The dressings created extremely subtle artifacts (one-for-one relationship) on the MR images. With regard to the conductivity assessments, the average resistance values were 20 kOhm and 1.1 kOhm, respectively, for the nonborder and border wound dressings, which were acceptable levels. The findings show the two silver-containing wound dressings tested will not pose hazards or risks to patients and, thus, are considered "MR safe" according to the current labeling terminology used for medical products, and each dressing may be left in place when a patient undergoes an MRI examination. To date, only a hydrofiber silver-containing dressing has been tested for MRI safety. Because of potential variances in material characteristics, MRI test results are specific to the dressings tested and cannot be applied to other products. Future studies to define the level of silver concentration in dressings that may pose a hazard for performing an MRI are warranted.

  12. An open-label, randomized clinical trial to assess the immunomodulatory activity of a novel oligosaccharide compound in healthy adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karriem H. Ali


    Full Text Available Background: Rice Bran Arabinoxylan Compound (RBAC is a nutritional supplement produced by enzymatic hydrolysis of hemicellulose B derived from rice bran. Several in vitro studies and clinical reports have shown RBAC to possess promising immunomodulating effects, specifically with respect to natural killer cell and cytokine activity. The concept of a true immunomodulator is an agent possessing a broad range of activity dependent upon the existing state of health and immunity in the individual host. The present study investigated the immunomodulatory effect of RBAC in a healthy adult human population over 60 days by assessing changes in natural killer cell cytotoxicity (NKCC and cytokines and growth factors. Subjects participated in a two-group, randomized intervention, where one group (n=10 consumed 1 gram/day and the other (n=10 consumed 3 gram/day. Safety and tolerability of RBAC were assessed with total bilirubin, total protein, creatinine, and liver function tests.Results: We found that both groups had similar responses for NKCC, cytokines, and growth factors. The NKCC peaked at 1 week, whereas interferon-γ, tumor necrosis factor-α, interleukins-1α, -1β, -8, and -10, and epidermal growth factor peaked at 30 days. All subjects tolerated the supplement without any adverse reactions.Conclusions: Our results showed transient, bi-directional, immune marker effects consistent with true, multifactorial immunomodulation rather than simply immunostimulation or immunosuppression. Given our findings, the immunomodulatory activity of RBAC merits studyFunctional Foods in Health and Disease 2012, 2(7:265-279 in conditions where the immune system is functionally compromised (e.g., otherwise-healthy smokers and HIV/AIDS or cancer patients. RBAC may not only help to destroy tumor cells and viruses directly, but also increase the activity of immune cells, thereby optimizing the immune system, especially NKCC, which can increase the chance and speed of host

  13. SELENA - An open-source tool for seismic risk and loss assessment using a logic tree computation procedure (United States)

    Molina, S.; Lang, D. H.; Lindholm, C. D.


    The era of earthquake risk and loss estimation basically began with the seminal paper on hazard by Allin Cornell in 1968. Following the 1971 San Fernando earthquake, the first studies placed strong emphasis on the prediction of human losses (number of casualties and injured used to estimate the needs in terms of health care and shelters in the immediate aftermath of a strong event). In contrast to these early risk modeling efforts, later studies have focused on the disruption of the serviceability of roads, telecommunications and other important lifeline systems. In the 1990s, the National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS) developed a tool (HAZUS ®99) for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), where the goal was to incorporate the best quantitative methodology in earthquake loss estimates. Herein, the current version of the open-source risk and loss estimation software SELENA v4.1 is presented. While using the spectral displacement-based approach (capacity spectrum method), this fully self-contained tool analytically computes the degree of damage on specific building typologies as well as the associated economic losses and number of casualties. The earthquake ground shaking estimates for SELENA v4.1 can be calculated or provided in three different ways: deterministic, probabilistic or based on near-real-time data. The main distinguishing feature of SELENA compared to other risk estimation software tools is that it is implemented in a 'logic tree' computation scheme which accounts for uncertainties of any input (e.g., scenario earthquake parameters, ground-motion prediction equations, soil models) or inventory data (e.g., building typology, capacity curves and fragility functions). The data used in the analysis is assigned with a decimal weighting factor defining the weight of the respective branch of the logic tree. The weighting of the input parameters accounts for the epistemic and aleatoric uncertainties that will always follow the necessary


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)



    Full Text Available Glaucoma is the leading cause of irreversible blindness in the world as it can remain asymptomatic until it causes severe visual loss. The target intraocular pressure with which progression is slowed sufficiently to avoid functional impairment should be achieved with the fewest medications and minimum adverse effects. The choice of medicine may be influenced by efficacy, cost, adverse effects, and dosing schedules. In general, prostaglandin analogues (PGA are the first-line of medical therapy. These drugs are administered once at night and have few systemic adverse effects. The study was conducted to compare the efficacy and safety of available PGAs. MATERIAL AND METHODS The study was conducted on sixty diagnosed cases of primary open angle glaucoma visiting the Outpatient Department of Regional Institute of Ophthalmology, Government Medical College, Amritsar. They were divided into three groups of twenty each. Each group was put on either of these anti-glaucoma topical drug (PGA - latanoprost 0.005%, travoprost 0.004% and bimatoprost 0.03% for three months duration. IOP at 9:00 AM ± 1 hr. and 4:00 PM ± 1 hr. were taken before and after 1 month and 3 months of treatment. The results of the reduction in mean IOP in each group were compared and analysed. OBSERVATIONS Mean baseline IOP at 8 AM in each group was similar (p value 0.772. Average decrease in IOP between the pretreatment (Baseline IOP and post-treatment levels (i.e. at 3 months was 31.90% in Group 1 (Bimatoprost Group, 32.97% in Group 2 (Latanoprost Group and 34.75% in Group 3 (Travoprost Group. When we applied paired t test, in each group, p value was <0.001, showing a statistically significant change. Once the efficacy of drugs was seen, we compared the efficacy of 3 groups with each other by applying ANOVA, P value was 0.108 which is not statistically significant. CONCLUSIONS Individually Bimatoprost, Latanoprost and Travoprost significantly lowered the intraocular pressure but

  15. Assessment of Parent Adolescent Communication on Sexual and Reproductive Health Issues and Associated Factors in Alamata High School, Northern Ethiopia, 2013

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nurilign Abebe


    Full Text Available Adolescence, the second decade of life, is a period in which an individual undergoes major physical and psychological changes. Adolescence is a time of opportunity, but also one of risk. The main aim of this study is to assess parent adolescent communication on sexual and reproductive health issues and associated factors in Alamata High school, northern Ethiopia, 2013. A total of 488 adolescents were included in the study. They were selected using multistage sampling method followed by systematic random sampling technique. Data were collected using self-administered questionnaire and analyzed by SPSS version 16. Both bivariate and multivariate logistic regressions were used to determine statistical significance of association at P-value of 0.05 with 95% confidence interval. The results shows that about 51% of the respondents were aged 14-16, while the rest were aged 17 to 19 years old. More than two-third of the participant (68.2% had had communication with their parents on sexual and reproductive issues. Adolescents at grade 9 and 10 had two times more likely to communicate (95% CI=2.2 (1.08- 4.46, students attending church or mosque 3.52 times more likely to communicate (95% CI=3.52 (1.27-9.79 also students in the urban origin were 3.12 times more likely to communicate (95% CI= 3.21 (1.61-6.39 with their parents on sexual and reproductive health issues. In the conclusion we can say that Adolescents from grade 11 and 12, those from rural origin and those less likely to attend their respective religious institutions should get due attention from parents, school community and other relevant stalk holders to increase their communication efficacy

  16. Open, Sharable, and Extensible Data Management for the Korea National Aquatic Ecological Monitoring and Assessment Program: A RESTful API-Based Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meilan Jiang


    Full Text Available Implemented by a national law, the National Aquatic Ecological Monitoring Program (NAEMP has been assessing the ecological health status of surface waters, focusing on streams and rivers, in Korea since 2007. The program involves ecological monitoring of multiple aquatic biota such as benthic diatoms, macroinvertebrates, fish, and plants as well as water quality and habitat parameters. Taking advantage of the national scale of long-term aquatic ecological monitoring and the standardization of protocols and methods, the datasets in NAEMP provide many opportunities for various advanced comparative and synthetic studies, policy-making, and ecological management. In order to realize these potentials and opportunities, we have developed a RESTful API-based data management system called OSAEM (the Open, Sharable and Extensible Data Management System for Aquatic Ecological Monitoring, which is designed to be open, sharable, and extensible. In this paper, we introduce the RESTful API-based data management approach, present the RESTful API for the OSAEM system, and discuss its applicability. An OSAEM prototype system is currently available on a commercial cloud service (Amazon EC2 but the system remains under active development.

  17. Regional Issue Identification and Assessment (RIIA): an analysis of the Mid-Range Projection Series C Scenario. Executive summary for Federal Region IV

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Honea, B.; Hillsman, E.


    The Department of Energy (DOE) has hypothesized a number of alternate energy futures as part of its energy planning and analysis programs. In this report, which is part of DOE's Regional Issue Identification and Assessment (RIIA) Program, Oak Ridge National Laboratory examines how a proposed energy future called the Mid-Range Projection Series C Scenario would affect Federal Region IV (Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee). This scenario, to be called the Series C Scenario, assumes a medium supply and a medium demand for fuel through 1990, and it incorporates the fuel switching provisions of the Energy Supply and Environmental Coordination Act. The report portrays the major regional environmental, human health and safety, socioeconomic, and institutional effects that might result from the implementation of the Series C Scenario.

  18. Application of the Systems Impact Assessment Model (SIAM) to Fishery Resource Issues in the Klamath River, California (United States)

    Campbell, Sharon G.; Bartholow, John M.; Heasley, John


    At the request of two offices of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) located in Yreka and Arcata, Calif., we applied the Systems Impact Assessment Model (SIAM) to analyze a variety of water management concerns associated with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) relicensing of the Klamath hydropower projects or with ongoing management of anadromous fish stocks in the mainstem Klamath River, Oregon and California. Requested SIAM analyses include predicted effects of reservoir withdrawal elevations, use of full active storage in Copco and Iron Gate Reservoirs to augment spring flows, and predicted spawning and juvenile outmigration timing of fall Chinook salmon. In an effort to further refine the analysis of spring flow effects on predicted fall Chinook production, additional SIAM analyses were performed for predicted response to spring flow release variability from Iron Gate Dam, high and low pulse flow releases, the predicted effects of operational constraints for both Upper Klamath Lake water surface elevations, and projected flow releases specified in the Klamath Project 2006 Operations Plan (April 10, 2006). Results of SIAM simulations to determine flow and water temperature relationships indicate that up to 4 degrees C of thermal variability can be attributed to flow variations, but the effect is seasonal. Much more of thermal variability can be attributed to air temperature variations, up to 6 degrees C. Reservoirs affect the annual thermal signature by delaying spring warming by about 3 weeks and fall cooling by about 2 weeks. Multi-level release outlets on Iron Gate Dam would have limited utility; however, if releases are small (700 cfs) and a near-surface and bottom-level outlet could be blended, then water temperature may be reduced by 2-4 degrees C for a 4-week period during September. Using the full active storage in Copco and Iron Gate Reservoir, although feasible, had undesirable ramifications such as earlier spring warming, loss of

  19. No evidence of harms of probiotic Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG ATCC 53103 in healthy elderly-a phase I open label study to assess safety, tolerability and cytokine responses.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patricia L Hibberd

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Although Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG ATCC 53103 (LGG has been consumed by 2 to 5 million people daily since the mid 1990s, there are few clinical trials describing potential harms of LGG, particularly in the elderly. OBJECTIVES: The primary objective of this open label clinical trial is to assess the safety and tolerability of 1×1010 colony forming units (CFU of LGG administered orally twice daily to elderly volunteers for 28 days. The secondary objectives were to evaluate the effects of LGG on the gastrointestinal microbiome, host immune response and plasma cytokines. METHODS: Fifteen elderly volunteers, aged 66-80 years received LGG capsules containing 1×1010 CFU, twice daily for 28 days and were followed through day 56. Volunteers completed a daily diary, a telephone call on study days 3, 7 and 14 and study visits in the Clinical Research Center at baseline, day 28 and day 56 to determine whether adverse events had occurred. Assessments included prompted and open-ended questions. RESULTS: There were no serious adverse events. The 15 volunteers had a total of 47 events (range 1-7 per volunteer, 39 (83% of which were rated as mild and 40% of which were considered related to consuming LGG. Thirty-one (70% of the events were expected, prompted symptoms while 16 were unexpected events. The most common adverse events were gastrointestinal (bloating, gas, and nausea, 27 rated as mild and 3 rated as moderate. In the exploratory analysis, the pro-inflammatory cytokine interleukin 8 decreased during LGG consumption, returning towards baseline one month after discontinuing LGG (p = 0.038 while there was no difference in other pro- or anti-inflammatory plasma cytokines. CONCLUSIONS: Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG ATCC 53103 is safe and well tolerated in healthy adults aged 65 years and older. TRIAL REGISTRATION: NCT 01274598.

  20. Safety assessment of nonbrowning potatoes: opening the discussion about the relevance of substantial equivalence on next generation biotech crops. (United States)

    Llorente, Briardo; Alonso, Guillermo D; Bravo-Almonacid, Fernando; Rodríguez, Vanina; López, Mariana G; Carrari, Fernando; Torres, Héctor N; Flawiá, Mirtha M


    It is expected that the next generation of biotech crops displaying enhanced quality traits with benefits to both farmers and consumers will have a better acceptance than first generation biotech crops and will improve public perception of genetic engineering. This will only be true if they are proven to be as safe as traditionally bred crops. In contrast with the first generation of biotech crops where only a single trait is modified, the next generation of biotech crops will add a new level of complexity inherent to the mechanisms underlying their output traits. In this study, a comprehensive evaluation of the comparative safety approach on a quality-improved biotech crop with metabolic modifications is presented. Three genetically engineered potato lines with silenced polyphenol oxidase (Ppo) transcripts and reduced tuber browning were characterized at both physiological and molecular levels and showed to be equivalent to wild-type (WT) plants when yield-associated traits and photosynthesis were evaluated. Analysis of the primary metabolism revealed several unintended metabolic modifications in the engineered tubers, providing evidence for potential compositional inequivalence between transgenic lines and WT controls. The silencing construct sequence was in silico analysed for potential allergenic cross-reactivity, and no similarities to known allergenic proteins were identified. Moreover, in vivo intake safety evaluation showed no adverse effects in physiological parameters. Taken together, these results provide the first evidence supporting that the safety of next generation biotech crops can be properly assessed following the current evaluation criterion, even if the transgenic and WT crops are not substantially equivalent.

  1. Open access: a perspective from the humanities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter Mandler


    Full Text Available This article surveys the debates over UK public policy for open access (OA since 2012 from the perspective of scholars in the humanities. It isolates points in Research Council and REF policy that have come under criticism from the humanities community for their basis in science practice, and assesses the progress that has been made in addressing these concerns. Issues considered include ‘gold’ and ‘green’ models of OA, the role of university managers in determining where and what academics can publish, embargo periods and licensing. The author is President of the Royal Historical Society.

  2. Open hardware for open science

    CERN Multimedia

    CERN Bulletin


    Inspired by the open source software movement, the Open Hardware Repository was created to enable hardware developers to share the results of their R&D activities. The recently published CERN Open Hardware Licence offers the legal framework to support this knowledge and technology exchange.   Two years ago, a group of electronics designers led by Javier Serrano, a CERN engineer, working in experimental physics laboratories created the Open Hardware Repository (OHR). This project was initiated in order to facilitate the exchange of hardware designs across the community in line with the ideals of “open science”. The main objectives include avoiding duplication of effort by sharing results across different teams that might be working on the same need. “For hardware developers, the advantages of open hardware are numerous. For example, it is a great learning tool for technologies some developers would not otherwise master, and it avoids unnecessary work if someone ha...

  3. Open Access (United States)

    Suber, Peter


    The Internet lets us share perfect copies of our work with a worldwide audience at virtually no cost. We take advantage of this revolutionary opportunity when we make our work "open access": digital, online, free of charge, and free of most copyright and licensing restrictions. Open access is made possible by the Internet and copyright-holder…

  4. Sediment Quality and Potential Toxicity Assessment in Two Open/Semiclosed Mediterranean Sea Areas: A Case Study of Sfax Coast (Tunisia). (United States)

    Gargouri, Dorra; Moez, Bahloul; Azri, Chafai


    The Gulf of Gabès (southeastern Tunisia), characterized by the abundance of halieutic resources, is nowadays facing strong anthropogenic pressures. This paper aims to assess and compare metallic pollution in two open/semiclosed areas bordering the coastline of Sfax (a part of the Gulf). The first area covers the outlet zone of many anthropogenic effluents of urban Sfax, whereas the second area, located at a distance of 15 km from the first one, was selected as being representative of numerous semiclosed areas bordering the Gulf that have served for harvesting clams. Spatial distribution of selected heavy metals (Cd, Pb, Zn, Cu, and Fe) coupled with chemometric approaches (enrichment factor, contamination degree, mean-ERM-quotients, and cluster analysis) were used as tools for the assessment of metallic pollution. The obtained results showed that metallic pollution is higher in the semiclosed area despite the absence of neighboring anthropogenic sources, probably because of the relative importance of both autochthonous organic matter and biota. The computed potential ecotoxicity demonstrated moderately high values in this area, testifying to a menaced biota that is prone to more affecting hazards if significant active measures are not taken.

  5. Assessment of RELAP5/MOD2 against a pressurizer spray valve inadverted fully opening transient and recovery by natural circulation in Jose Cabrera Nuclear Station

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Arroyo, R.; Rebollo, L. [Union Electrica, SA, Madrid (Spain)


    This document presents the comparison between the simulation results and the plant measurements of a real event that took place in JOSE CABRERA nuclear power plant in August 30th, 1984. The event was originated by the total, continuous and inadverted opening of the pressurizer spray valve PCV-400A. JOSE CABRERA power plant is a single loop Westinghouse PWR belonging to UNION ELECTRICA FENOSA, S.A. (UNION FENOSA), an Spanish utility which participates in the International Code Assessment and Applications Program (ICAP) as a member of UNIDAD ELECTRICA, S.A. (UNESA). This is the second of its two contributions to the Program: the first one was an application case and this is an assessment one. The simulation has been performed using the RELAP5/MOD2 cycle 36.04 code, running on a CDC CYBER 180/830 computer under NOS 2.5 operating system. The main phenomena have been calculated correctly and some conclusions about the 3D characteristics of the condensation due to the spray and its simulation with a 1D tool have been got.

  6. ECMR’13 Special Issue


    Andrade-Cetto, Juan; Frese, Udo; Moritz, Tenorth


    This special issue contains extended versions of the best papers from the 6th European Conference on Mobile Robots (ECMR). ECMR is a biennial European forum, internationally open, that allows roboticists throughout Europe to become acquainted with the latest research accomplishments and innovations in mobile robotics and mobile human–robot systems. ECMR covers most aspects of mobile robotics research and machine intelligence, including (but not limited to) the following topics: multi-sensor f...

  7. JPRS Report: Proliferation Issues (United States)


    foreign media information on issues related to worldwide proliferation and transfer activities in nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons, including...Domestic Service in English 1215 GMT 28 Dec 92 As China has shown enormous market potential in its economic reform and opening to the outside world...CIS commander-in-chief, social and legal guarantees of military Reports on Minsk Summit on Strategic Forces observers and peace-keepers, as well as

  8. Individual mobility: issues and assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Roos, D. [Massachusetts Inst. of Technology, Center for Technology, Policy and Industrial Development, Cambridge, MA (United States)


    Problems relating to mobility will intensify in developing countries due to explosive growth in motorization. In the Western countries, individual travel needs will change as a result of demographics (e.g. an increase in the elderly population, working women and single person households), and new information and communication technology. Increased congestion and global warming are the principal concerns that impact mobility. To respond to these concerns, significant mobility improvements can be realized by replicating successful mobility strategies that have been implemented in some cities throughout the world. However, a more fundamental reappraisal will be necessary that considers mobility in an overall sustainability context. Intelligent transportation systems (ITS) may provide a framework for a new mobility infrastructure that enables implementation of a dynamic transportation system. Such a system can adapt on a real-time basis to customer needs and social concerns. ITS enables pricing and control strategies to be more easily utilized on an episodic basis. Development of a rational approach to sustainable mobility requires the public and private sectors as well as various stakeholders to develop a shared vision of the future, since mobility goes beyond national and competitive interests. (author) 3 figs.

  9. Salicylic acid analogues as chemical exchange saturation transfer MRI contrast agents for the assessment of brain perfusion territory and blood-brain barrier opening after intra-arterial infusion. (United States)

    Song, Xiaolei; Walczak, Piotr; He, Xiaowei; Yang, Xing; Pearl, Monica; Bulte, Jeff Wm; Pomper, Martin G; McMahon, Michael T; Janowski, Mirosław


    The blood-brain barrier (BBB) is a major obstacle for drug delivery to the brain. Predicted, focal opening of the BBB through intra-arterial infusion of hyperosmolar mannitol is feasible, but there is a need to facilitate imaging techniques (e.g. MRI) to guide interventional procedures and assess the outcomes. Here, we show that salicylic acid analogues (SAA) can depict the brain territory supplied by the catheter and detect the BBB opening, through chemical exchange saturation transfer (CEST) MRI. Hyperosmolar SAA solutions themselves are also capable of opening the BBB, and, when multiple SAA agents were co-injected, their locoregional perfusion could be differentiated.

  10. Bioethical issues in the development of biopharmaceuticals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Todorović Zoran


    Full Text Available Development of biopharmaceuticals is a challenging issue in bioethics. Unlike conventional, small molecular weight drugs, biopharmaceuticals are proteins derived from DNA technology and hybrid techniques with complex three dimensional structures. Immunogenicity of biopharmaceuticals should always be tested in clinical settings due to low predictive value of preclinical animal models. However, non-human primates (NHP and transgenic mice could be used to address certain aspects of immunogenicity. Substantial efforts have been made to reduce NHP use in biopharmaceutical drug development, e.g. study design improvements and changes in regulatory policy. In addition, several expert groups are active in this field (e.g. NC3Rs, BioSafe, and Biopharmaceutical Technical Group. Despite that, there is an increasing trend of use of NHP in preclinical safety testing of biopharmaceuticals, especially regarding monoclonal antibodies. Other potential bioethical issues related biopharmaceutical drug development are their cost/effectiveness ratio, clinical safety assessment, production of biosimilars, and comparison of their efficacy with placebo in countries without intention to market. Identification of the human genome has opened many new bioethical issues. Development of biopharmaceuticals is an important bioethical issue for several reasons. It connects all aspects of contemporary bioethics: bio­medicine (e.g. clinical trials in vulnerable subjects, animal welfare and the most recent ad­vances in biotechnology. In particular, biopharmaceutical drug development is a challenging issue regarding treatment of rare diseases.

  11. An Assessment of Some Design Constraints on Heat Production of a 3D Conceptual EGS Model Using an Open-Source Geothermal Reservoir Simulation Code

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yidong Xia; Mitch Plummer; Robert Podgorney; Ahmad Ghassemi


    Performance of heat production process over a 30-year period is assessed in a conceptual EGS model with a geothermal gradient of 65K per km depth in the reservoir. Water is circulated through a pair of parallel wells connected by a set of single large wing fractures. The results indicate that the desirable output electric power rate and lifespan could be obtained under suitable material properties and system parameters. A sensitivity analysis on some design constraints and operation parameters indicates that 1) the fracture horizontal spacing has profound effect on the long-term performance of heat production, 2) the downward deviation angle for the parallel doublet wells may help overcome the difficulty of vertical drilling to reach a favorable production temperature, and 3) the thermal energy production rate and lifespan has close dependence on water mass flow rate. The results also indicate that the heat production can be improved when the horizontal fracture spacing, well deviation angle, and production flow rate are under reasonable conditions. To conduct the reservoir modeling and simulations, an open-source, finite element based, fully implicit, fully coupled hydrothermal code, namely FALCON, has been developed and used in this work. Compared with most other existing codes that are either closed-source or commercially available in this area, this new open-source code has demonstrated a code development strategy that aims to provide an unparalleled easiness for user-customization and multi-physics coupling. Test results have shown that the FALCON code is able to complete the long-term tests efficiently and accurately, thanks to the state-of-the-art nonlinear and linear solver algorithms implemented in the code.

  12. "Assessment of Skin Damage Appearance and Its Causes after Open Heart Surgery in Khatam-ol-Anbia Hospital during Second Half of the Year 1379"

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)



    Full Text Available To evaluate the quality of services in hospitals can rely on mortality rate and side effects rate. According to performed studies, side effects rate is a better indicator to evaluate the quality of hospital services, therefore decreasing of side effects is one of the main objectives in hospital management. A side effect of open-heart surgery is the skin damage. Some of Iranian patients who were operated on this kind of surgery have appeared some skin damages that medical articles haven’t pointed this matter. This study was performed to assess the appearance rate and also causes of skin damages to promote the services quality of Khatam-ol-Anbia Hospital in Tehran. During 6 months particulars of patients, who were operated on the open-heart surgery were considered. The data regarding the patients from their medical files and the data about skin damages rate from Nursing reports was collected. The skin damages were divided four groups on the basis of damage intensity: without damage; with skin redness; blustery; and intense phlogestic (inflamed. 102 patients (%28.2 somewhat suffered from skin damages. Among these 102 patients, 88 patients (%87.1 were affected with slight skin redness; 5 patients (%5 with intense skin redness; 5 patients (%5 with blister; and 3 cases with intense burn like damages. Generally, %1.4 of patients suffered from blister and %0.8 of cases from intense burn like damages; it means one case among every 50 patients needed special attention. In this study, the factors of weight, gender, diabetes, narcotics addiction, and function of one of the first aid of surgeon influenced the skin damage. It deserves to pay attention to the rate of patients’ losses and compensation amount, which must be, paid the patients by hospitals. It seems if the above mentioned matters are considered the importance of this study will be cleared more.

  13. Design of Cycle 3 of the National Water-Quality Assessment Program, 2013-2022: Part 1: Framework of Water-Quality Issues and Potential Approaches (United States)

    Rowe, Gary L.; Belitz, Kenneth; Essaid, Hedeff I.; Gilliom, Robert J.; Hamilton, Pixie A.; Hoos, Anne B.; Lynch, Dennis D.; Munn, Mark D.; Wolock, David W.


    In 1991, the U.S. Congress established the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) National Water-Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program to develop long-term, nationally consistent information on the quality of the Nation's streams and groundwater. Congress recognized the critical need for this information to support scientifically sound management, regulatory, and policy decisions concerning the increasingly stressed water resources of the Nation. The long-term goals of NAWQA are to: (1) assess the status of water-quality conditions in the United States, (2) evaluate long-term trends in water-quality conditions, and (3) link status and trends with an understanding of the natural and human factors that affect water quality. These goals are national in scale, include both surface water and groundwater, and include consideration of water quality in relation to both human uses and aquatic ecosystems. Since 1991, NAWQA assessments and findings have fostered and supported major improvements in the availability and use of unbiased scientific information for decisionmaking, resource management, and planning at all levels of government. These improvements have enabled agencies and stakeholders to cost-effectively address a wide range of water-quality issues related to natural and human influences on the quality of water and potential effects on aquatic ecosystems and human health ( NAWQA, like all USGS programs, provides policy relevant information that serves as a scientific basis for decisionmaking related to resource management, protection, and restoration. The information is freely available to all levels of government, nongovernmental organizations, industry, academia, and the public, and is readily accessible on the NAWQA Web site and other diverse formats to serve the needs of the water-resource community at different technical levels. Water-quality conditions in streams and groundwater are described in more than 1,700 publications (available

  14. Magnetic fusion energy plasma interactive and high heat flux components. Volume II. Technical assessment of the critical issues and problem areas in high heat flux materials and component development

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Abdou, M.A.; Boyd, R.D.; Easor, J.R.; Gauster, W.B.; Gordon, J.D.; Mattas, R.F.; Morgan, G.D.; Ulrickson, M.A,; Watson, R.D.; Wolfer, W.G,


    A technical assessment of the critical issues and problem areas for high heat flux materials and components (HHFMC) in magnetic fusion devices shows these problems to be of critical importance for the successful operation of near-term fusion experiments and for the feasibility and attractiveness of long-term fusion reactors. A number of subgroups were formed to assess the critical HHFMC issues along the following major lines: (1) source conditions, (2) systems integration, (3) materials and processes, (4) thermal hydraulics, (5) thermomechanical response, (6) electromagnetic response, (7) instrumentation and control, and (8) test facilities. The details of the technical assessment are presented in eight chapters. The primary technical issues and needs for each area are highlighted.

  15. Adaptive Assessments Using Open Specifications (United States)

    Leon, Hector Barbosa; Garcia-Penalvo, Francisco J.; Rodriguez-Conde, Maria Jose; Morales, Erla M.; de Pablos, Patricia Ordonez


    Evaluation is a key element in formal education processes; it must be constructed in a way that the item questions within help students understand by adapting them to the learning style as well. The focus of the present research work specifically in the convenience to adapt an associated multimedia material in each single question besides the…

  16. Open IS

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Germonprez, Matt; Crowston, Kevin; Avital, Michel


    The collective intelligence and collective action of “open” communities have produced a variety of complex knowledge goods and radical social change. The Information Systems (IS) community has invested significant effort into researching open communities and the ecosystems in which they operate...... therefore seeks to stimulate a thoughtful and dynamic discussion around the proposition that becoming a more open community will enhance the IS discipline’s scholarly inquiry and global impact....

  17. Open quantum system identification

    CERN Document Server

    Schirmer, Sophie G; Zhou, Weiwei; Gong, Erling; Zhang, Ming


    Engineering quantum systems offers great opportunities both technologically and scientifically for communication, computation, and simulation. The construction and operation of large scale quantum information devices presents a grand challenge and a major issue is the effective control of coherent dynamics. This is often in the presence of decoherence which further complicates the task of determining the behaviour of the system. Here, we show how to determine open system Markovian dynamics of a quantum system with restricted initialisation and partial output state information.

  18. Availability and readability of emergency preparedness materials for deaf and hard-of-hearing and older adult populations: issues and assessments. (United States)

    Neuhauser, Linda; Ivey, Susan L; Huang, Debbie; Engelman, Alina; Tseng, Winston; Dahrouge, Donna; Gurung, Sidhanta; Kealey, Melissa


    A major public health challenge is to communicate effectively with vulnerable populations about preparing for disasters and other health emergencies. People who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing (Deaf/HH) and older adults are particularly vulnerable during health emergencies and require communications that are accessible and understandable. Although health literacy studies indicate that the readability of health communication materials often exceeds people's literacy levels, we could find no research about the readability of emergency preparedness materials (EPM) intended for Deaf/HH and older adult populations. The objective of this study was to explore issues related to EPM for Deaf/HH and older adult populations, to assess the availability and readability of materials for these populations, and to recommend improvements. In two California counties, we interviewed staff at 14 community-based organizations (CBOs) serving Deaf/HH clients and 20 CBOs serving older adults selected from a stratified, random sample of 227 CBOs. We collected 40 EPM from 10 CBOs and 2 public health departments and 40 EPM from 14 local and national websites with EPM for the public. We used computerized assessments to test the U.S. grade reading levels of the 16 eligible CBO and health department EPM, and the 18 eligible website materials. Results showed that less than half of CBOs had EPM for their clients. All EPM intended for clients of Deaf/HH-serving CBOs tested above the recommended 4(th) grade reading level, and 91% of the materials intended for clients of older adult-serving CBOs scored above the recommended 6(th) grade level. EPM for these populations should be widely available through CBOs and public health departments, adhere to health literacy principles, and be accessible in alternative formats including American Sign Language. Developers should engage the intended users of EPM as co-designers and testers. This study adds to the limited literature about EPM for these populations.

  19. Open Science in Practice: Researcher Perspectives and Participation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Angus Whyte


    Full Text Available We report on an exploratory study consisting of brief case studies in selected disciplines, examining what motivates researchers to work (or want to work in an open manner with regard to their data, results and protocols, and whether advantages are delivered by working in this way. We review the policy background to open science, and literature on the benefits attributed to open data, considering how these relate to curation and to questions of who participates in science. The case studies investigate the perceived benefits to researchers, research institutions and funding bodies of utilising open scientific methods, the disincentives and barriers, and the degree to which there is evidence to support these perceptions. Six case study groups were selected in astronomy, bioinformatics, chemistry, epidemiology, language technology and neuroimaging. The studies identify relevant examples and issues through qualitative analysis of interview transcripts. We provide a typology of degrees of open working across the research lifecycle, and conclude that better support for open working, through guidelines to assist research groups in identifying the value and costs of working more openly, and further research to assess the risks, incentives and shifts in responsibility entailed by opening up the research process are needed.

  20. A Prospective, Open Label, Observational Study to Assess the Safety and Efficacy of Herbal Cough Syrup Mykoff® in Patients Suffering from Cough of Varied Aetiologies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mangesh Bhalerao


    Full Text Available A prospective, open label, observational study was conducted at general outpatient clinic to assess the safety and efficacy of herbal cough syrup Mykoff® in patients suffering from cough of varied aetiologies. The patients of either sex, age > 3yrs, suffering from cough due to common cold, mild to moderate upper respiratory tract infections, allergic cough and smoker’s cough were enrolled. The safety was evaluated by means of an analysis of adverse events. In addition, efficacy and tolerability were analysed from the following grades by patients and confirmed by doctor. Of 50 patients, 63% were diagnosed with cough due to upper respiratory tract infections, 17% common cold, 12% allergic cough and 8% smoker’s cough. Substantial improvement, i.e., excellent to good response, in relief of cough was noted in 42 (84% out of 50 patients and fair response in another 4 (8%. Only 4 out of 50 patients showed no relief in symptoms. Most of the patients (98% accepted the remedy well. Only one adverse event was reported. However, a relation to the medication was classified to be unlikely. The test drug Mykoff® is an effective and safe cough syrup that is highly acceptable for patients with cough of short duration.

  1. Open access

    CERN Document Server

    Suber, Peter


    The Internet lets us share perfect copies of our work with a worldwide audience at virtually no cost. We take advantage of this revolutionary opportunity when we make our work "open access": digital, online, free of charge, and free of most copyright and licensing restrictions. Open access is made possible by the Internet and copyright-holder consent, and many authors, musicians, filmmakers, and other creators who depend on royalties are understandably unwilling to give their consent. But for 350 years, scholars have written peer-reviewed journal articles for impact, not for money, and are free to consent to open access without losing revenue. In this concise introduction, Peter Suber tells us what open access is and isn't, how it benefits authors and readers of research, how we pay for it, how it avoids copyright problems, how it has moved from the periphery to the mainstream, and what its future may hold. Distilling a decade of Suber's influential writing and thinking about open access, this is the indispe...

  2. Bond Issues. (United States)

    Pollack, Rachel H.


    Notes trends toward increased borrowing by colleges and universities and offers guidelines for institutions that are considering issuing bonds to raise money for capital projects. Discussion covers advantages of using bond financing, how use of bonds impacts on traditional fund raising, other cautions and concerns, and some troubling aspects of…

  3. Tentative Study of Government-Industry-Academia Cooperative Innovation Ability Assessment Issues(1)%官产学合作创新能力评价问题初探(上)

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)



    创新能力,尤其是国家创新能力是一个国家实现发展经济、提升国家科技水平、增强国际竞争力、以及保证国家可持续发展的动力所在.中国在经历了30多年的改革开放和自主创新发展之后,国民经济发展取得了举世瞩目的成就,国家竞争力大大增强.但是,当今中国在经济高速发展的进程中,与世界上发达国家相比,却在国家创新能力和创新水平方面存在着相当大的差距,这种差距已成了落实国家发展战略和国家可持续发展的瓶颈,这是必须高度重视和认真对待的问题.突破这一瓶颈的关键就在于,必须强化国家的创新能力.或者说,强化以知识创新、技术创新和制度创新及其三者的融合创新为主要内容的官产学合作创新,进而提高官产学合作创新能力与水平,以促进国家创新系统的建设与发展.为此,对官产学合作创新能力评价过程中的创新能力理论模型与评价体系、创新能力评价综合指数,以及创新能力影响因素的仿真分析等问题进行了初步的研究.%Innovation ability, especially national innovation ability, is a driving force behind a country' s ability to achieve economic development, improve national level of technology, enhance international competitiveness and ensure national sustainability. After over three decades of reform and opening-up as well as proactive, innovative development, China has made eye—catching achievements in national economic development, with significantly improved national competitiveness. However, China still lag far behind developed countries in terms of national innovation ability and performance in the course of rapid economic development, which has become a bottleneck to the implementation of the national development strategy and national sustainability. This is an issue we must give much attention and seriously address. The author believes to overcome such bottleneck requires enhancing

  4. Tentative Study on Government-Industry-Academia Cooperative Innovation Ability Assessment Issues (2)%官产学合作创新能力评价问题初探(下)

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)



    创新能力,尤其是国家创新能力是一个国家实现发展经济、提升国家科技水平、增强国际竞争力、以及保证国家可持续发展的动力所在.中国在经历了30多年的改革开放和自主创新发展之后,国民经济发展取得了举世瞩目的成就,国家竞争力大大增强.但是,当今中国在经济高速发展的进程中,与世界上发达国家相比,却在国家创新能力和创新水平方面存在着相当大的差距,这种差距已成了落实国家发展战略和国家可持续发展的瓶颈,这是必须高度重视和认真对待的问题.突破这一瓶颈的关键就在于,必须强化国家的创新能力.或者说,强化以知识创新、技术创新和制度创新及其三者的融合创新为主要内容的官产学合作创新,进而提高官产学合作创新能力与水平,以促进国家创新系统的建设与发展.为此,对官产学合作创新能力评价过程中的创新能力理论模型与评价体系、创新能力评价综合指数,以及创新能力影响因素的仿真分析等问题进行了初步的研究.%Innovation ability, especially national innovation ability, is a driving force behind a country's ability to achieve economic development, improves national level of technology, enhances international competitiveness and ensures national sustainabitity. After over three decades of reform and opening - up as well as proactive, innovative development , China has made eye - catching achievements in national economic development, with significantly improved national competitiveness. However, China still lag far behind developed countries in terms of national innovation ability and performance in the course of rapid economic development, which has become a bottleneck to the implementation of the national development strategy and national sustainability. This is an issue we must give much attention and seriously address. The author believes to overcome such bottleneck requires

  5. An open-source, self-explanatory touch screen in routine care. Validity of filling in the Bath measures on Ankylosing Spondylitis Disease Activity Index, Function Index, the Health Assessment Questionnaire and Visual Analogue Scales in comparison with paper versions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schefte, David B; Hetland, Merete L


    The Danish DANBIO registry has developed open-source software for touch screens in the waiting room. The objective was to assess the validity of outcomes from self-explanatory patient questionnaires on touch screen in comparison with the traditional paper form in routine clinical care....

  6. Special Issue “Feature Papers”

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Henson


    Full Text Available The Special Issue “Feature Papers” of the journal Processes aims to establish the scope of this new open access journal in chemical, biological, environmental, pharmaceutical, and material-process engineering, as well as the development of general process engineering methods. The Special Issue is available online at:[...

  7. Open Education and the Open Science Economy (United States)

    Peters, Michael A.


    Openness as a complex code word for a variety of digital trends and movements has emerged as an alternative mode of "social production" based on the growing and overlapping complexities of open source, open access, open archiving, open publishing, and open science. This paper argues that the openness movement with its reinforcing structure of…

  8. Editorial: Open Source in Government

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dru Lavigne


    Full Text Available Last summer, the Center for Strategic and International Studies published the sixth update to their Open Source Policy survey. The survey "tracks governmental policies on the use of open source software as reported in the press or other media." The report lists 275 open source policy initiatives. It also breaks down by country and by government level whether the policy on the use of open source is considered to be advisory, preferential, or mandatory. The editorial theme for the May issue of the OSBR is "open source in government" and we are pleased that the authors have drawn upon their experiences to provide insight into public policy regarding open source for many parts of the world.

  9. The Open

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saitya Brata Das


    Full Text Available In the Open darkness and light, remembrance and oblivion, coming into existence and disappearing in death play their originary co-belonging, or co-figuration. Existence belongs to this opening and is exposed to its coming to presence: it is on the basis of this originary opening, this originary historical which is revealed to this mortal being called ‘man,’ on the basis of this revelation, man founds something like politics and history. There thus comes into existence out of this freedom, out of this “play space”2, this field called ‘polis’3 where there takes place war and festival, where historical revolutions tear apart history, brings ruptures and discontinuities in the very mode of his existence, where man seeks the foundation of his own foundation (which is his metaphysical task , where occurs the dialectics of negativity between man and man, where man puts at stake his own death, his own dissolution, and by the power of his own dissolution stands in relation to the total world that he seeks to dominate. This means that man’s attempts to metaphysically found his own political and historical existence must presuppose a far more originary non-foundation, the differentiating revealing of the open, the ungrounded spacing play, or playing space of natality and mortality.

  10. Open innovation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    West, Joel; Bogers, Marcel


    by small, new, and not-for-profit organizations, as well as the linkage of individual actions and motivations to open innovation. Other opportunities include better measuring the costs, benefits, antecedents, mediators and moderators of the effects of OI on performance, and understanding why and how OI...

  11. OpenCL/OpenGL aproach for studying active Brownian motion

    CERN Document Server

    Żabicki, Michał A


    This work presents a methodology for studying active Brownian dynamics on ratchet potentials using interoperating OpenCL and OpenGL frameworks. Programing details along with optimization issues are discussed, followed by a comparison of performance on different devices. Time of visualization using OpenGL sharing buffer with OpenCL has been tested against another technique which, while using OpenGL, does not share memory buffer with OpenCL. Both methods has been compared with visualizing data to external software - gnuplot. OpenCL/OpenGL interoperating method has been found the most appropriate to visualize large set of data for which calculation itself is not very long.

  12. Green-roof as a solution to solve stormwater management issues? Assessment on a long time period at the parcel scale (United States)

    Versini, P.-A.; Petrucci, G.; de Gouvello, B.


    Experimental green-roof rainfall-runoff observations have shown a positive impact on stormwater management at the building scale; with a decrease in the peak discharge and a decrease in runoff volume. This efficiency of green-roofs varies from one rainfall event to another depending on precipitation characteristics and substrate antecedent conditions. Due to this variability, currently, green-roofs are rarely officially used as a regulation tool to manage stormwater. Indeed, regulation rules governing the connection to the stormwater network are usually based on absolute threshold values that always have to be respected: maximum areal flow-rate or minimum retention volume for example. In this context, the aim of this study is to illustrate how a green-roof could represent an alternative to solve stormwater management issues, if the regulation rules were further based on statistics. For this purpose, a modelling scheme has been established at the parcel scale to simulate the hydrological response of several roof configurations: impervious, strictly regulated (in terms of areal flow-rate or retention volume), and covered by different types of green-roof matter. Simulations were carried out on a long precipitation time period (23 years) that included a large and heterogeneous set of hydrometeorological conditions. Results obtained for the different roof configurations were compared. Based on the return period of the rainfall event, the probability to respect some regulation rules (defined from real situations) was assessed. They illustrate that green-roofs reduce stormwater runoff compared to an impervious roof surface and can guarantee the respect of the regulation rules in most of the cases. Moreover, their implementation can appear more realistic than that of other infrastructures strictly complying with regulations and demanding significant storage capacity.

  13. Theoretical Issues

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Marc Vanderhaeghen


    The theoretical issues in the interpretation of the precision measurements of the nucleon-to-Delta transition by means of electromagnetic probes are highlighted. The results of these measurements are confronted with the state-of-the-art calculations based on chiral effective-field theories (EFT), lattice QCD, large-Nc relations, perturbative QCD, and QCD-inspired models. The link of the nucleon-to-Delta form factors to generalized parton distributions (GPDs) is also discussed.

  14. Call for Special Issue Proposals



    The Interdisciplinary Journal of Problem-Based Learning is seeking proposals for guest edited special topics issue to be published in 2016. The special issue should focus on a targeted area of interest relevant to problem-based learning, project-based learning, case-based learning, anchored instruction, or inquiry broadly. We are open to any areas of specialized interest, whether they are context, content, or process related.

  15. Phase II open-label study to assess efficacy and safety of lenalidomide in combination with cetuximab in KRAS-mutant metastatic colorectal cancer.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Salvatore Siena

    Full Text Available This study aimed to assess the efficacy and safety of combination treatment with lenalidomide and cetuximab in KRAS-mutant metastatic colorectal cancer patients. This was a phase II multicenter, open-label trial comprising a safety lead-in phase (phase IIa to determine the maximum tolerated dose, and a randomized proof of concept phase (phase IIb to determine the response rate of lenalidomide plus cetuximab combination therapy. Phase IIa treatment comprised oral lenalidomide (starting dose 25 mg/day and intravenous cetuximab (400 mg/m(2 followed by weekly 250 mg/m(2 in 28-day cycles. In phase IIb patients were randomized to either the phase IIa treatment schedule of lenalidomide plus cetuximab combination therapy or lenalidomide 25 mg/day monotherapy. Eight patients were enrolled into phase IIa. One patient developed a dose-limiting toxicity and the maximum tolerated dose of lenalidomide was determined at 25 mg/day. Forty-three patients were enrolled into phase IIb proof of concept. Best response was stable disease in 9 patients and study enrollment was terminated prematurely due to lack of efficacy in both treatment arms and failure to achieve the planned response objective. The majority of adverse events were grade 1 and 2. In both phases, the adverse events most commonly attributed to any study drugs were fatigue, rash and other skin disorders, diarrhea, nausea, and stomatitis. Thirty-nine deaths occurred; none was related to study drug. The combination of lenalidomide and cetuximab appeared to be well tolerated but did not have clinically meaningful activity in KRAS-mutant metastatic colorectal cancer NCT01032291.

  16. XGlycScan: An Open-source Software For N-linked Glycosite Assignment, Quantification and Quality Assessment of Data from Mass Spectrometry-based Glycoproteomic Analysis. (United States)

    Aiyetan, Paul; Zhang, Bai; Zhang, Zhen; Zhang, Hui


    Mass spectrometry based glycoproteomics has become a major means of identifying and characterizing previously N-linked glycan attached loci (glycosites). In the bottom-up approach, several factors which include but not limited to sample preparation, mass spectrometry analyses, and protein sequence database searches result in previously N-linked peptide spectrum matches (PSMs) of varying lengths. Given that multiple PSM scan map to a glycosite, we reason that identified PSMs are varying length peptide species of a unique set of glycosites. Because associated spectra of these PSMs are typically summed separately, true glycosite associated spectra counts are lost or complicated. Also, these varying length peptide species complicate protein inference as smaller sized peptide sequences are more likely to map to more proteins than larger sized peptides or actual glycosite sequences. Here, we present XGlycScan. XGlycScan maps varying length peptide species to glycosites to facilitate an accurate quantification of glycosite associated spectra counts. We observed that this reduced the variability in reported identifications of mass spectrometry technical replicates of our sample dataset. We also observed that mapping identified peptides to glycosites provided an assessment of search-engine identification. Inherently, XGlycScan reported glycosites reduce the complexity in protein inference. We implemented XGlycScan in the platform independent Java programing language and have made it available as open source. XGlycScan's source code is freely available at and its compiled binaries and documentation can be freely downloaded at The graphical user interface version can also be found at and respectively.

  17. Assessing sleeping energy expenditure in children using heart-rate monitoring calibrated against open-circuit indirect calorimetry: a pilot study. (United States)

    Beghin, L; Michaud, L; Guimber, D; Vaksmann, G; Turck, D; Gottrand, F


    Total energy expenditure (EE) can be assessed in children by the heart-rate (HR) monitoring technique calibrated against open-circuit indirect calorimetry (IC). In this technique, sleeping EE is usually estimated as the lowest value of a 30 min resting EE measurement x 0 x 90 to give an average for the total sleeping period. However, sleeping is a dynamic process in which sleeping EE is modulated by the effect of factors such as body movement and different sleep stages. The aim of the present study was to determine a new method to improve the sleeping EE measurement by taking into account body movements during sleep. Twenty-four non-obese children participated in the present study. All subjects passed through a calibration period. HR and EE measured by IC were simultaneously collected during resting, the postprandial period, and during different levels of activity. Different methods for computing sleeping EE (resting with different breakpoints ('flex point' HR with linear regression or 'inflection point' (IP) HR with the third order polynomial regression equation (P3)) were compared with EE measured for least 2.0 h in eight sleeping children. The best method of calculation was then tested in sixteen children undergoing HR monitoring and with a body movement detector. In a subset of eight children undergoing simultaneous sleeping EE measurement by IC and HR, the use of the equation resting when HRIP during the sleeping period gave the lowest difference (1 (sd 5.4) %) compared with other methods (linear or polynomial regressions). The new formula was tested in an independent subset of sixteen other children. The difference between sleeping EE computed with the formula resting and sleeping EE computed with resting when HRIP during sleeping periods was significant (13 (sd 5.9) %) only for active sleeping subjects (n 6 of 16 subjects). The correlation between the difference in the results from the two methods of calculation and body movements was close (r 0

  18. Open Source, Open Access, Open Review, Open Data. Initiativen zu mehr Offenheit in der digitalen Welt


    Herb, Ulrich


    The article discusses the principles of openess, open access and open availability of information based on the examples of open access to scientific information, open government data, open geographical data and open source software.

  19. OpenAPC. Open-Access-Publikationskosten als Open Data


    Tullney, Marco


    Präsentationsfolien zum Vortrag „OpenAPC. Open-Access-Publikationskosten als Open Data“ in der Session „Ausgestaltung eines wissenschaftsadäquaten APC-Marktes: Grundsätze, Finanzierungsansätze und Management“ der Open-Access-Tage 2015 in Zürich (

  20. SCOAP3 and Open Access

    CERN Document Server

    Mele, Salvatore; D'Agostino, Dan; Dyas-Correia, Sharon


    SCOAP3 is an innovative Open Access initiative for publishing in high-energy physics. The model is viewed by many as a potential solution to multiple issues related to the financial crisis, the peer review system, scholarly communication, and the need to support institutional repositories. This installment of “The Balance Point” presents articles written by three Open Access advocates, outlining the SCOAP3 proposal, benefits of participation, and some of the roles libraries, publishers and scientists can play in making important changes to scholarly communication. Contributors discuss scalability and transferability issues of SCOAP3, as well as other matters of concern.

  1. BIOPROTA Key Issues in Biosphere Aspects of Assessment of the Long-term Impact of Contaminant Releases Associated with Radioactive Waste Management Theme 2: Task 7:Modelling Processes in the Geosphere Biosphere Interface Zone

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pinedo, P.; Smith, G.; Aguero, A.; Albrecht, A.; Bath, A.; Benhabderrahmane, H.; Van Dorp, F.; Kautsky, U.; Klos, R.; Laciok, A.; Milodowski, T.; Selroos, J.O.; Simon, I.; Texier, D.; Thorne, M.; Willans, M.


    This document reports on BIOPROTA Theme 2, task 7 which investigated modelling processes in the geosphere- biosphere interface zone (GBIZ) during performance assessments. Modelling issues in the treatment of the GBIZ are identified. A large proportion of the identified issues concern modelling radionuclide behaviour in near surface aquifers which are subject to relatively high gradients in chemical and other conditions. Other key issues concern transfer of radionuclides through the unsaturated zone above aquifers, bearing in mind the scope for erosion and variations in the level of the phreatic surface and also the consideration of environmental change. A number of research areas are highlighted that are aimed at addressing each of the identified issues in the treatment of GBIZ. These include (i) Developing of a current statement of continuing problems, and hence clarify and justify the need to do more; (ii) Conducting a review of site investigations as they have been done already, and determine whether they meet performance assessment requirements; (iii) Identifying scenarios and FEPs considered in current treatments; and, (iv) Conducting source-pathway-receptor analysis to demonstrate comprehensiveness of the overall scenario identification process. The objectives of these activities would be to determine the potential to reduce uncertainties and/or conservative assumptions in assessment of radionuclide transfer from the geosphere to biosphere domains, taking account of environmental change; and to develop guidance on site-characterisation needs at different types of site, as regards the near-surface features. (Author) 23 refs.

  2. Key Issue

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oya Y Rieger


    Full Text Available A few months ago, while I was participating in a conference about open access infrastructures, a delegate from a governmental agency asked, “Why does each library need to maintain a repository for their own scientists?” He was rightfully wondering if a broad collaboration in building a network of archives will provide a durable and extensible technology and service framework for ever-increasing digital scholarly content. The ensuing discussion did not offer a plausible response but accentuated that we do not have in place a plan for building an expandable infrastructure to facilitate communication and exchange of information among rapidly proliferating distinct instances of institutional and subject repositories.

  3. Easing Gently into OpenSRF, Part 1

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dan Scott


    Full Text Available The Open Service Request Framework (or OpenSRF, pronounced "open surf" is an inter-application message passing architecture built on XMPP (aka "jabber". The Evergreen open source library system is built on an OpenSRF architecture to support loosely coupled individual components communicating over an OpenSRF messaging bus. This article introduces OpenSRF, demonstrates how to build OpenSRF services through simple code examples, explains the technical foundations on which OpenSRF is built, and evaluates OpenSRF's value in the context of Evergreen. Part 1 of a 2 part article in this issue.

  4. Easing Gently into OpenSRF, Part 2

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dan Scott


    Full Text Available The Open Service Request Framework (or OpenSRF, pronounced "open surf" is an inter-application message passing architecture built on XMPP (aka "jabber". The Evergreen open source library system is built on an OpenSRF architecture to support loosely coupled individual components communicating over an OpenSRF messaging bus. This article introduces OpenSRF, demonstrates how to build OpenSRF services through simple code examples, explains the technical foundations on which OpenSRF is built, and evaluates OpenSRF's value in the context of Evergreen. Part 2 of a 2 part article in this issue.

  5. Environmental Assessment for opening portions of Patoka River National Wildlife Refuge and Management Area for hunting and fishing as proposed in the 1996 Hunting and Fishing Plan (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service proposes to open portions of the Patoka River National Wildlife Refuge and Management Area (Refuge) for hunting (migratory birds,...

  6. Use of a web-based image reporting and tracking system for assessing abdominal imaging examination quality issues in a single practice. (United States)

    Rosenkrantz, Andrew B; Johnson, Evan; Sanger, Joseph J


    This article presents our local experience in the implementation of a real-time web-based system for reporting and tracking quality issues relating to abdominal imaging examinations. This system allows radiologists to electronically submit examination quality issues during clinical readouts. The submitted information is e-mailed to a designate for the given modality for further follow-up; the designate may subsequently enter text describing their response or action taken, which is e-mailed back to the radiologist. Review of 558 entries over a 6-year period demonstrated documentation of a broad range of examination quality issues, including specific issues relating to protocol deviation, post-processing errors, positioning errors, artifacts, and IT concerns. The most common issues varied among US, CT, MRI, radiography, and fluoroscopy. In addition, the most common issues resulting in a patient recall for repeat imaging (generally related to protocol deviation in MRI and US) were identified. In addition to submitting quality problems, radiologists also commonly used the tool to provide recognition of a well-performed examination. An electronic log of actions taken in response to radiologists' submissions indicated that both positive and negative feedback were commonly communicated to the performing technologist. Information generated using the tool can be used to guide subsequent quality improvement initiatives within a practice, including continued protocol standardization as well as education of technologists in the optimization of abdominal imaging examinations.

  7. Coding Issues in Grounded Theory (United States)

    Moghaddam, Alireza


    This paper discusses grounded theory as one of the qualitative research designs. It describes how grounded theory generates from data. Three phases of grounded theory--open coding, axial coding, and selective coding--are discussed, along with some of the issues which are the source of debate among grounded theorists, especially between its…

  8. Volume 4, Issue 1

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karen Nelson


    Full Text Available This issue showcases a rich variety of first year issues reported from an assortment of national and international settings.  In the Feature, Professor Phil Long (University of Queensland and Associate Professor Shane Dawson (University of South Australia share their views about the issues and challenges associated with learning analytics.  Reflecting the adage from last century that successful student engagement is the result of a combination of warmth and challenge the articles and practice reports focus on both the cognitive challenge  (e.g., assessment, forms of knowledge, distance learning, research skills, peer learning, etc. and the affective warmth (e.g., help-seeking, collaboration, identity development etc. aspects of student behaviour.

  9. Open University

    CERN Document Server



    Michel Pentz est née en Afrique du Sud et venu au Cern en 1957 comme physicien et président de l'associaion du personnel. Il est également fondateur du mouvement Antiapartheid de Genève et a participé à la fondation de l'Open University en Grande-Bretagne. Il nous parle des contextes pédagogiques, culturels et nationaux dans lesquels la méthode peut s'appliquer.

  10. 开放式公园管理问题及对策的研究——以柳州市为例%Open Park Management Issues and Policy Research——A Case of Liuzhou City

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)



    公园免费开放后,新问题、新矛盾接踵而至.选择柳州市自2007年6月1日起陆续改造或新建的有特色代表性强的4个公园,即柳候公园、江滨公园、龙潭公园、雀儿山公园进行调查与研究,发现开放式公园管理中目前存在资金短缺、绿地和公共设施遭破坏、管理难度明显加大、安全隐患增加、公共服务设施及活动空间不足等问题,提出实行收支两线及财政全额拨款的体制、加大政府投资力度、强化环境宣传教育、引进市场经济运作方式、建立精干高效的专业管理者队伍、制定和完善与公园经营相关的制度、重视公园的社会治安和综合治理等有利于开放式公园可持续发展的管理对策,从而使开放式公园的社会、经济、环境三大效益取得协调发展.%There have been new problems and contradictory appearing gradually after the park is open to the public for free. In order to investigate and study something, the author chose four parks in Liuzhou City including Liuhou park, Jiangbin park, Longtan park and Queshan park, all of which have been constructed or newly built with a special representative since June 1", 2007. Based on the investigation and study, the author concluded some problems existing in the current management of the freely open parks such as the inadequacy of capital, the green land and public instrument being destroyed, the obviously big difficulties in management, the increase of potential danger, public service instrument and the inadequate space for activities, etc. In addition, the author also put forward the system of carrying the lines between incomes and expenses, the system of carrying the finance totally supported by nation, the reinforcement in governmental investment, the strengthening for environmental spreading and educating, the introduction of market economy operation, the construction of a capable managing team with a high efficiency, the establishment

  11. Assessment of the trauma degree and spinal cord function of para-median minimally invasive and open TLIF for single segmental lumbar degenerative disease

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Zheng Bo-long; He Bao-rong; Yang Xiao-bin; Yang Ming; Yan Liang; Bai Xiao-fan; Hao Ding-jun


    Objective:To study the trauma degree of para-median minimally invasive and open TLIF for single segmental lumbar degenerative disease and the effect on spinal cord function.Methods:A total of 78 cases of patients with single segmental lumbar disc herniation who received TLIF treatment in our hospital were selected as the research subjects and randomly divided into two groups, minimally invasive group received para-median minimally invasive TLIF and open group received open TLIF. Perioperative serum levels of oxidative stress indicators and pain mediators as well as spinal cord function were compared between two groups.Results: 1 d and 3 d after operation, serum SOD, GSH-Px and SP levels of minimally invasive group were significantly higher than those of open group, and MDA, AOPP, NO,β-EP, PGE2 and CGRP levels were significantly lower than those of open group; 1 week after operation, NCV and DL of common peroneal nerve and tibial nerve of two groups were not different from those before operation; 4 weeks and 16 weeks after operation, NCV of common peroneal nerve and tibial nerve of both groups were higher than those before operation while DL were lower than those before operation, and NCV of common peroneal nerve and tibial nerve of minimally invasive group were significantly higher than those of open group while DL were significantly lower than those of open group.Conclusion:The trauma degree of para-median minimally invasive TLIF for single segmental lumbar degenerative disease is less and the postoperative spinal cord function recovery is more ideal.

  12. In praise of open software

    CERN Multimedia


    Much scientific software is proprietary and beyond the reach of poorer scientific communities. This issue will become critical as companies build bioinformatics tools for genomics. The principal of open-source software needs to be defended by academic research institutions (1/2 p).

  13. Current issues with research support

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Russell, W.T.


    It would be difficult to condense current issues in nuclear reactor regulation to just a few minutes. So, let me start off by saying that I have not tried to give a comprehensive listing of issues that are currently facing the reactor program, but rather to select those that I thought were relevant as they relate to research activities. Use of probabilistic risk assessment in regulatory decisions; materials aging issues concerning steam generators and reactor vessels; high burnup fuels; accident management; and digital instrumentation and control, are just a sampling of the important issues that I want to talk about.

  14. Issue Management Risk Ranking Systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Novack, Steven David; Marshall, Frances Mc Clellan; Stromberg, Howard Merion; Grant, Gary Michael


    Thousands of safety issues have been collected on-line at the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL) as part of the Issue Management Plan. However, there has been no established approach to prioritize collected and future issues. The authors developed a methodology, based on hazards assessment, to identify and risk rank over 5000 safety issues collected at INEEL. This approach required that it was easily applied and understandable for site adaptation and commensurate with the Integrated Safety Plan. High-risk issues were investigated and mitigative/preventive measures were suggested and ranked based on a cost-benefit scheme to provide risk-informed safety measures. This methodology was consistent with other integrated safety management goals and tasks providing a site-wide risk informed decision tool to reduce hazardous conditions and focus resources on high-risk safety issues. As part of the issue management plan, this methodology was incorporated at the issue collection level and training was provided to management to better familiarize decision-makers with concepts of safety and risk. This prioritization methodology and issue dissemination procedure will be discussed. Results of issue prioritization and training efforts will be summarized. Difficulties and advantages of the process will be reported. Development and incorporation of this process into INEELs lessons learned reporting and the site-wide integrated safety management program will be shown with an emphasis on establishing self reliance and ownership of safety issues.

  15. Issue Management Risk Ranking Systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    F. M. Marshall; G. M. Grant; H. M. Stromberg; S. D. Novack


    Thousands of safety issues have been collected on-line at the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL) as part of the Issue Management Plan. However, there has been no established approach to prioritize collected and future issues. The authors developed a methodology, based on hazards assessment, to identify and risk rank over 5000 safety issues collected at INEEL. This approach required that it was easily applied and understandable for site adaptation and commensurate with the Integrated Safety Plan. High-risk issues were investigated and mitigative/preventive measures were suggested and ranked based on a cost-benefit scheme to provide risk-informed safety measures. This methodology was consistent with other integrated safety management goals and tasks providing a site-wide risk-informed decision tool to reduce hazardous conditions and focus resources on high-risk safety issues. As part of the issue management plan, this methodology was incorporated at the issue collection level and training was provided to management to better familiarize decision-makers with concepts of safety and risk. This prioritization methodology and issue dissemination procedure will be discussed. Results of issue prioritization and training efforts will be summarized. Difficulties and advantages of the process will be reported. Development and incorporation of this process into INEEL's lessons learned reporting and the site-wide integrated safety management program will be shown with an emphasis on establishing self reliance and ownership of safety issues.

  16. Brexit – and its potential impact for open access in the UK

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul Ayris


    Full Text Available This article looks at the possible implications of Brexit for approaches to open access (OA in the UK. It begins by sketching current issues in Brexit debates at the end of 2016 as the context into which discussions about open access are then placed. Issues in four thematic areas are analysed: OA policies and mandates, EU copyright reform, new OA publishing models and open science. The level of dependence in the UK on European developments is assessed in each case and its contribution to Brexit issues identified. The paper concludes that Brexit presents not only challenges, but also opportunities which the UK could seize. In open access, the UK is already playing a leadership role. In areas of open science, particularly in relation to the European Open Science Cloud, it is the European Commission which is asserting leadership. The UK needs to consolidate its current activity and ensure that, whatever the nature of Brexit arrangements, its freedom does not lead to isolation.

  17. Epistemological and Methodological Issues for the Conceptualization, Development, and Assessment of ICT-TPCK: Advances in Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge (TPCK) (United States)

    Angeli, Charoula; Valanides, Nicos


    In this paper, several issues regarding the epistemology of technological pedagogical content knowledge (TPCK) are first raised for the purpose of clarifying the construct. Specifically, the transformative and integrative views are juxtaposed for exploring the epistemology of TPCK, and, at the end, the transformative view is adopted concluding…

  18. Effect of Safety Issues with HIV Drugs on the Approval Process of Other Drugs in the Same Class An Analysis of European Public Assessment Reports

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Arnardottir, Arna H.; Haaijer-Ruskamp, Flora M.; Straus, Sabine M. J.; de Graeff, Pieter A.; Mol, Peter G. M.


    Background: Knowledge on the safety of new medicines is limited at the time of market entry. Nearly half of all drugs used to treat HIV registered in the EU required >= 1 Direct Healthcare Professional Communication (DHPC) in the past 10 years for safety issues identified post-approval. Objective: T

  19. OpenER, a Dutch Initiative in Open Educational Resources (United States)

    Schuwer, Robert; Mulder, Fred


    Over the period 2006-2008, the Dutch Open Universiteit Nederland conducted an experiment in which Open Educational Resources (OER) were offered in an effort to bridge the gap between informal and formal learning and to establish a new style of entry portal to higher education with no barriers at all. OpenER received considerable attention both in…

  20. No evidence of harms of probiotic Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG ATCC 53103 in healthy elderly-a Phase I Open Label Study to assess safety, tolerability and cytokine responses (United States)

    Although Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG ATCC 53103 (LGG) has been consumed since the mid 1990s by between 2 and 5 million people daily, the scientific literature lacks rigorous clinical trials that describe the potential harms of LGG, particularly in the elderly. The primary objective of this open label...

  1. Exploring Strategies of Assessment and Results in the Spanish Universidad Nacional de Educacion a Distancia and the United Kingdom Open University. (United States)

    James, Arthur

    The strategies of student evaluation and the patterns of results are compared for The Universidad Nacional de Educacion a Distancia (UNED) in Spain and The Open University of The United Kingdom. Both universities operate a system of undergraduate subject credits leading to a degree, but the length of the courses of the two systems differ. UNED…

  2. Development and Validation of an Instrument to Assess the Implementation of Family-Centred Care in Traditional Open Bay Neonatal Intensive Care Units (United States)

    Al-Motlaq, Mohammad A.; Abuidhail, Jamila; Salameh, Taghreed; Awwad, Wesam


    Objective: To develop an instrument to study family-centred care (FCC) in traditional open bay Neonatal Intensive Care Units (NICUs). Methods: The development process involved constructing instrument's items, establishing content validity by an expert panel and testing the instrument for validity and reliability with a convenience sample of 25…

  3. Open Access to Scientific Literature: An Assessment of Awareness Support and Usage among Academic Librarians at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (United States)

    Evans, Marsha Ann Johnson


    Open Access (OA) to scholarly communications is a critical component in providing equitable admission to scholarly information and a key vehicle toward the achievement of global access to research in the knowledge building process. A standard and universally accepted process for guaranteeing OA permits complimentary access to knowledge, research…


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Littera Aperta


    Full Text Available LITTERA APERTA (Vol. 2 - 2014. Abstract: In its open and interdisciplinary scope, volume 2 of Littera Aperta. Journal of Literary and Cultural Studies continues the path opened in volume 1. It includes papers which belong to a wide range of periods, genres, nationalities and methodological approaches. Two complementary papers look into the figure of ghosts in the Classical writers Aristophanes and Lucretius: “The ghosts in Aristophanes’ Frogs” by Soraya Planchas Gallarte (Universidad Complutense de Madrid; and “Templa Serena against Acherusia Templa: A Materialistic Explanation of Ghosts in Lucretius” by Ángel J. Traver Vera (Junta de Extremadura. Juan de Dios Torralbo Caballero (Universidad de Córdoba analyzes the narrative techniques of the novel History of the Nun (1688 by the English writer Aphra Behn. In the field of contemporary world literature in English, Miryam Librán Moreno (Universidad de Extremadura traces the far-reaching influence of Sophocles’ Oedipus Tyrannus on the story of Túrin Turambar by J.R.R. Tolkien; and the researcher Damlègue Lare, from the University of Lomé (Togo, surveys Efo Kodjo Mawugbe’s procedures to debunk African patriarchal patterns of thought in his feminist play In the Chest of a Woman (2008. As a cultural complement to these research pieces, Gabriel Laguna Mariscal (Universidad de Córdoba interviews the Spanish philosopher Javier Gomá Lanzón about the philosophy of the interviewee himself, the role of the philosopher in the modern society and the relevance of Humanities in the education of citizenry. Gabriel Laguna also publishes a review about a book that Javier Gomá coauthors together with Carlos García Gual and Fernando Savater: Muchas felicidades. Tres visiones y más de la idea de felicidad. // LITTERA APERTA (Vol. 2 - 2014. Resumen: El volumen 2 de Littera Aperta. Journal of Literary and Cultural Studies continúa la línea interdisciplinar y abierta del volumen 1, al incluir

  5. Information security considerations in open systems architectures

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Klein, S.A. (Atlantic Research Corp., Rockville, MD (United States)); Menendez, J.N. (Atlantic Research Corp., Hanover, MD (United States))


    This paper is part of a series of papers invited by the IEEE POWER CONTROL CENTER WORKING GROUP concerning the changing designs of modern control centers. Papers invited by the Working Group discuss the following issues: Benefits of Openness, Criteria for Evaluating Open EMS Systems, Hardware Design, Configuration Management, Security, Project Management, Data Bases, SCADA, Inter and Intra-System Communications, and Man Machine Interfaces.'' This paper discusses information security and issues related to its achievement in open systems architectures. Beginning with a discussion of the goals of information security and their relation to open systems, the paper provides examples of the threats to electric utility computer systems and the consequences associated with these threats, presents basic countermeasures applicable to all computer systems, and discusses issues specific to open systems architectures.

  6. Visions, Issues, and Reality: A Changing South. (United States)

    Willis, Bernice H., Ed.

    The aims of this conference on education in the South were to identify important trends, garner expertise on the trends, and explore emerging educational issues. The conference produced 67 papers and talks presented at five subject sessions in addition to opening and closing sessions. Papers from the opening session discuss the role of technology…

  7. Issues in Assessing English Language Learners: English Language Proficiency Measures and Accommodation Uses. Literature Review (Part 1 of 3). CRESST Report 731 (United States)

    Wolf, Mikyung Kim; Kao, Jenny; Herman, Joan; Bachman, Lyle F.; Bailey, Alison; Bachman, Patina L.; Farnsworth, Tim; Chang, Sandy M.


    The No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act has made a great impact on states' policies in assessing English language learner (ELL) students. The legislation requires states to develop or adopt sound assessments in order to validly measure the ELL students' English language proficiency (ELP), as well as content knowledge and skills. Although states have…

  8. Publishing in Open Access Education Journals: The Authors' Perspectives (United States)

    Coonin, Bryna; Younce, Leigh M.


    Open access publishing is now an accepted method of scholarly communication. However, the greatest traction for open access publishing thus far has been in the sciences. Penetration of open access publishing has been much slower among the social sciences. This study surveys 309 authors from recent issues of open access journals in education to…

  9. Educational assessment in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Pakistan’s North-West Frontier Province: Practices, Issues, and Challenges for Educating Culturally Linguistically Diverse and Exceptional Children

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eirini Gouleta


    Full Text Available This article presents the case of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP, Pakistan’s former North-West Frontier Province, and its provincial educational assessment policies and practices. These policies and practices affect millions of Culturally Linguistically Diverse and Exceptional (CLDE children who live in rural and remote areas, and areas afflicted by conflict and insurgency. The article raises questions about political interference, ethical conduct, and fairness in the administration and marking of the assessments. It discusses efforts for systematic administration and collection of learning assessment data, teacher professional development programs to improve assessment practices, policies which address the educational needs of the diverse students in the province, and challenges and barriers to province-wide sustainable education development. In conclusion, the author offers suggestions and recommendations for policy makers and education stakeholders towards capacity building and improvement of assessment practices for all learners while it attempts to shed light and dispel misconceptions about KP and its people.

  10. Openness initiative

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Duncan, S.S. [Los Alamos National Lab., NM (United States)


    Although antinuclear campaigns seem to be effective, public communication and education efforts on low-level radioactive waste have mixed results. Attempts at public information programs on low-level radioactive waste still focus on influencing public opinion. A question then is: {open_quotes}Is it preferable to have a program focus on public education that will empower individuals to make informed decisions rather than trying to influence them in their decisions?{close_quotes} To address this question, a case study with both quantitative and qualitative data will be used. The Ohio Low-Level Radioactive Waste Education Program has a goal to provide people with information they want/need to make their own decisions. The program initiated its efforts by conducting a statewide survey to determine information needed by people and where they turned for that information. This presentation reports data from the survey and then explores the program development process in which programs were designed and presented using the information. Pre and post data from the programs reveal attitude and knowledge shifts.

  11. Gallbladder removal - open (United States)

    Cholecystectomy - open; Surgery - gallbladder - open ... a medical instrument called a laparoscope ( laparoscopic cholecystectomy ). Open gallbladder surgery is used when laparoscopic surgery cannot ...

  12. Afghan Ministry of Defense Headquarters: $154.7 Million Building Appears Well Built, but Has Several Construction Issues that Should Be Assessed (United States)


    Combined Security Transition Command–Afghanistan ITSI Innovative Technical Solutions, Inc. MOD Ministry of Defense NATO North Atlantic Treaty Organization ...and the Environment, awarded a $48.7 million cost-plus-fixed-fee contract to Innovative Technical Solutions, Inc. (ITSI) to construct a Ministry of...could affect the building’s structural integrity during an earthquake or prolonged periods of rain. These include issues with building separation

  13. Issues Primer. EEE708 Negotiated Study Program. (United States)

    Jennings, Leonie

    This issues primer is structured around a series of 20 contemporary concerns in the changing world of work and training in Australia in the early 1990s. It is part of the study materials for the one-semester distance education unit, Negotiated Study Program, in the Open Campus Program at Deakin University (Australia). Information on each issue is…

  14. Advances in Learning Design: Special Issue Editorial

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tattersall, Colin; Koper, Rob


    Please cite as: Colin Tattersall and Rob Koper (2005). Advances in Learning Design: Special Issue Editorial. Journal of Interactive Media in Education (Advances in Learning Design. Special Issue, eds. Colin Tattersall, Rob Koper), 2005/03. ISSN:1365-893X [

  15. Generic Safety Issue (GSI) 171 -- Engineered Safety Feature (ESF) failure from a loop subsequent to LOCA: Assessment of plant vulnerability and CDF contributions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Martinez-Guridi, G.; Samanta, P.; Chu, L.; Yang, J. [Brookhaven National Lab., Upton, NY (United States)


    Generic Safety Issue 171 (GSI-171), Engineered Safety Feature (ESF) from a Loss Of Offsite Power (LOOP) subsequent to a Loss Of Coolant Accident (LOCA), deals with an accident sequence in which a LOCA is followed by a LOOP. This issue was later broadened to include a LOOP followed by a LOCA. Plants are designed to handle a simultaneous LOCA and LOOP. In this paper, the authors address the unique issues that are involved i LOCA with delayed LOOP (LOCA/LOOP) and LOOP with delayed LOCA (LOOP/LOCA) accident sequences. LOCA/LOOP accidents are analyzed further by developing event-tree/fault-tree models to quantify their contributions to core-damage frequency (CDF) in a pressurized water reactor and a boiling water reactor (PWR and a BWR). Engineering evaluation and judgments are used during quantification to estimate the unique conditions that arise in a LOCA/LOOP accident. The results show that the CDF contribution of such an accident can be a dominant contributor to plant risk, although BWRs are less vulnerable than PWRs.

  16. Opening Address (United States)

    Crovini, L.


    Ladies and Gentlemen To quote Mr Jean Terrien: "Physics must be one step ahead of metrology". A long-serving Director of the BIPM, he said these words when visiting the IMGC in 1970 as a member of the scientific board of our Institute. At that time it was still an open question whether the IMGC should start research work on the absolute measurement of silicon lattice spacing. Mr Terrien underlined the revolutionary character of x-ray interferometry and, eventually, he caused the balance needle to lean towards the ... right direction. Mr Terrien correctly foresaw that, like Michelson's interferometer of 1880, x-ray interferometry could have a prominent place in today's science and technology. And while, in the first case, after more than a century we can see instruments based on electromagnetic wave interaction within every one's reach in laboratories and, sometimes, in workshops, in the second case, twenty-five years since the first development of an x-ray interferometer we can witness its role in nanometrology. Today and tomorrow we meet to discuss how to go beyond the sixth decimal place in the value of the Avogadro constant. We are aware that the quest for this achievement requires the cooperation of scientists with complementary capabilities. I am sure that the present workshop is a very good opportunity to present and discuss results and to improve and extend existing cooperation. The new adjustment of fundamental constants envisaged by the CODATA Task Group is redoubling scientists' efforts to produce competitive values of NA. The results of the measurements of the silicon lattice spacing in terms of an optical wavelength, which were available for the 1986 adjustment, combined with the determination of silicon molar volume, demonstrate how such an NA determination produces a consistent set of other constants and opens the way to a possible redefinition of the kilogram. We shall see in these two days how far we have progressed along this road. For us at the

  17. Early outcomes and perioperative risk assessment in elective open thoracoabdominal aortic aneurysm repair: An analysis of national data over a five-year period. (United States)

    Dayama, Anand; Sugano, Dordaneh; Reeves, James G; Rivera, Aksim; Tsilimparis, Nikolaos


    Open surgical repair of thoracoabdominal aortic aneurysms remains associated with significant morbidity and mortality. We sought to analyse multicentre national data on early outcomes of open surgical thoracoabdominal aortic aneurysm repair. Patients who underwent open repair of thoracoabdominal aortic aneurysm from 2005 to 2010 were identified from the National Surgical Quality Improvement Program database. The primary endpoint was mortality at 30 days. Patient demographics, clinical variables, and intraoperative parameters were analysed by univariate and multivariate logistic regression methods to identify risk factors for mortality. Of the 682 elective repairs, 30-day outcomes of elective repairs were: 10.0% mortality, 21.6% surgical complications, 42.2% pulmonary complications, 17.2% renal complications, 12.9% cardiovascular complications, 19.2% septic complications, and 6.6% wound complications. Multivariate logistic regression analysis showed that age, ASA-class IV, dependent functional status prior to surgery, and operation time are independent risk factors for mortality. Our study found a higher rate of mortality nationwide, as compared to several previous single center studies.

  18. Open life science research, open software and the open century

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Youhua Chen


    At the age of knowledge explosion and mass scientific information, I highlighted the importance of conducting open science in life and medical researches through the extensive usage of open software and documents. The proposal of conducting open science is to reduce the limited repeatability of researches in life science. I outlined the essential steps for conducting open life science and the necessary standards for creating, reusing and reproducing open materials. Different Creative Commons licenses were presented and compared of their usage scope and restriction. As a conclusion, I argued that open materials should be widely adopted in doing life and medical researches.

  19. Open Source GIS based integrated watershed management (United States)

    Byrne, J. M.; Lindsay, J.; Berg, A. A.


    Optimal land and water management to address future and current resource stresses and allocation challenges requires the development of state-of-the-art geomatics and hydrological modelling tools. Future hydrological modelling tools should be of high resolution, process based with real-time capability to assess changing resource issues critical to short, medium and long-term enviromental management. The objective here is to merge two renowned, well published resource modeling programs to create an source toolbox for integrated land and water management applications. This work will facilitate a much increased efficiency in land and water resource security, management and planning. Following an 'open-source' philosophy, the tools will be computer platform independent with source code freely available, maximizing knowledge transfer and the global value of the proposed research. The envisioned set of water resource management tools will be housed within 'Whitebox Geospatial Analysis Tools'. Whitebox, is an open-source geographical information system (GIS) developed by Dr. John Lindsay at the University of Guelph. The emphasis of the Whitebox project has been to develop a user-friendly interface for advanced spatial analysis in environmental applications. The plugin architecture of the software is ideal for the tight-integration of spatially distributed models and spatial analysis algorithms such as those contained within the GENESYS suite. Open-source development extends knowledge and technology transfer to a broad range of end-users and builds Canadian capability to address complex resource management problems with better tools and expertise for managers in Canada and around the world. GENESYS (Generate Earth Systems Science input) is an innovative, efficient, high-resolution hydro- and agro-meteorological model for complex terrain watersheds developed under the direction of Dr. James Byrne. GENESYS is an outstanding research and applications tool to address

  20. Open source intelligence, open social intelligence and privacy by design


    Casanovas, Pompeu; Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (Austràlia). Centre for Applied Social Research


    Ponència presentada a European Conference on Social Intelligence (ECSI-2014) OSINT stands for Open Source Intelligence, (O)SI for (Open) Social Intelligence, PbD for Privacy by Design. The CAPER project has built an OSINT solution oriented to the prevention of organized crime. How to balance freedom and security? This position paper describes a way to embed the legal and ethical issues raised by the General Data Reform Package (GDRP) in Europe into this kind of surveillance platforms. It f...