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Sample records for improve plant developmental

  1. Charles Darwin and the origins of plant evolutionary developmental biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friedman, William E; Diggle, Pamela K

    2011-04-01

    Much has been written of the early history of comparative embryology and its influence on the emergence of an evolutionary developmental perspective. However, this literature, which dates back nearly a century, has been focused on metazoans, without acknowledgment of the contributions of comparative plant morphologists to the creation of a developmental view of biodiversity. We trace the origin of comparative plant developmental morphology from its inception in the eighteenth century works of Wolff and Goethe, through the mid nineteenth century discoveries of the general principles of leaf and floral organ morphogenesis. Much like the stimulus that von Baer provided as a nonevolutionary comparative embryologist to the creation of an evolutionary developmental view of animals, the comparative developmental studies of plant morphologists were the basis for the first articulation of the concept that plant (namely floral) evolution results from successive modifications of ontogeny. Perhaps most surprisingly, we show that the first person to carefully read and internalize the remarkable advances in the understanding of plant morphogenesis in the 1840s and 1850s is none other than Charles Darwin, whose notebooks, correspondence, and (then) unpublished manuscripts clearly demonstrate that he had discovered the developmental basis for the evolutionary transformation of plant form.

  2. Analysing growth and development of plants jointly using developmental growth stages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dambreville, Anaëlle; Lauri, Pierre-Éric; Normand, Frédéric; Guédon, Yann

    2015-01-01

    Plant growth, the increase of organ dimensions over time, and development, the change in plant structure, are often studied as two separate processes. However, there is structural and functional evidence that these two processes are strongly related. The aim of this study was to investigate the co-ordination between growth and development using mango trees, which have well-defined developmental stages. Developmental stages, determined in an expert way, and organ sizes, determined from objective measurements, were collected during the vegetative growth and flowering phases of two cultivars of mango, Mangifera indica. For a given cultivar and growth unit type (either vegetative or flowering), a multistage model based on absolute growth rate sequences deduced from the measurements was first built, and then growth stages deduced from the model were compared with developmental stages. Strong matches were obtained between growth stages and developmental stages, leading to a consistent definition of integrative developmental growth stages. The growth stages highlighted growth asynchronisms between two topologically connected organs, namely the vegetative axis and its leaves. Integrative developmental growth stages emphasize that developmental stages are closely related to organ growth rates. The results are discussed in terms of the possible physiological processes underlying these stages, including plant hydraulics, biomechanics and carbohydrate partitioning. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Annals of Botany Company. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  3. Developmental Pathways Are Blueprints for Designing Successful Crops

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ben Trevaskis

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Genes controlling plant development have been studied in multiple plant systems. This has provided deep insights into conserved genetic pathways controlling core developmental processes including meristem identity, phase transitions, determinacy, stem elongation, and branching. These pathways control plant growth patterns and are fundamentally important to crop biology and agriculture. This review describes the conserved pathways that control plant development, using Arabidopsis as a model. Historical examples of how plant development has been altered through selection to improve crop performance are then presented. These examples, drawn from diverse crops, show how the genetic pathways controlling development have been modified to increase yield or tailor growth patterns to suit local growing environments or specialized crop management practices. Strategies to apply current progress in genomics and developmental biology to future crop improvement are then discussed within the broader context of emerging trends in plant breeding. The ways that knowledge of developmental processes and understanding of gene function can contribute to crop improvement, beyond what can be achieved by selection alone, are emphasized. These include using genome re-sequencing, mutagenesis, and gene editing to identify or generate novel variation in developmental genes. The expanding scope for comparative genomics, the possibility to engineer new developmental traits and new approaches to resolve gene–gene or gene–environment interactions are also discussed. Finally, opportunities to integrate fundamental research and crop breeding are highlighted.

  4. The extracellular matrix of plants: Molecular, cellular and developmental biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1996-12-31

    A symposium entitled ``The Extracellular Matrix of Plants: Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology was held in Tamarron, Colorado, March 15--21, 1996. The following topics were explored in addresses by 43 speakers: structure and biochemistry of cell walls; biochemistry, molecular biology and biosynthesis of lignin; secretory pathway and synthesis of glycoproteins; biosynthesis of matrix polysaccharides, callose and cellulose; role of the extracellular matrix in plant growth and development; plant cell walls in symbiosis and pathogenesis.

  5. Genetic identification of female Cannabis sativa plants at early developmental stage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Techen, Natascha; Chandra, Suman; Lata, Hemant; Elsohly, Mahmoud A; Khan, Ikhlas A

    2010-11-01

    Sequence-characterized amplified region (SCAR) markers were used to identify female plants at an early developmental stage in four different varieties of Cannabis sativa. Using the cetyl trimethylammonium bromide (CTAB) method, DNA was isolated from two-week-old plants of three drug-type varieties (Terbag W1, Terbag K2, and Terbag MX) and one fiber-type variety (Terbag Fedora A7) of C. sativa grown under controlled environmental conditions through seeds. Attempts to use MADC2 (male-associated DNA from Cannabis sativa) primers as a marker to identify the sex of Cannabis sativa plants were successful. Amplification of genomic DNA using MADC2-F and MADC2-R primers produced two distinct fragments, one with a size of approximately 450 bp for female plants and one for male plants with a size of approximately 300 bp. After harvesting the tissues for DNA extraction, plants were subjected to a flowering photoperiod (i.e., 12-h light cycle), and the appearance of flowers was compared with the DNA analysis. The results of the molecular analysis were found to be concordant with the appearance of male or female flowers. The results of this study represent a quick and reliable technique for the identification of sex in Cannabis plants using SCAR markers at a very early developmental stage. © Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York.

  6. Convergent occurrence of the developmental hourglass in plant and animal embryogenesis?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cridge, Andrew G; Dearden, Peter K; Brownfield, Lynette R

    2016-04-01

    The remarkable similarity of animal embryos at particular stages of development led to the proposal of a developmental hourglass. In this model, early events in development are less conserved across species but lead to a highly conserved 'phylotypic period'. Beyond this stage, the model suggests that development once again becomes less conserved, leading to the diversity of forms. Recent comparative studies of gene expression in animal groups have provided strong support for the hourglass model. How and why might such an hourglass pattern be generated? More importantly, how might early acting events in development evolve while still maintaining a later conserved stage? The discovery that an hourglass pattern may also exist in the embryogenesis of plants provides comparative data that may help us explain this phenomenon. Whether the developmental hourglass occurs in plants, and what this means for our understanding of embryogenesis in plants and animals is discussed. Models by which conserved early-acting genes might change their functional role in the evolution of gene networks, how networks buffer these changes, and how that might constrain, or confer diversity, of the body plan are also discused. Evidence of a morphological and molecular hourglass in plant and animal embryogenesis suggests convergent evolution. This convergence is likely due to developmental constraints imposed upon embryogenesis by the need to produce a viable embryo with an established body plan, controlled by the architecture of the underlying gene regulatory networks. As the body plan is largely laid down during the middle phases of embryo development in plants and animals, then it is perhaps not surprising this stage represents the narrow waist of the hourglass where the gene regulatory networks are the oldest and most robust and integrated, limiting species diversity and constraining morphological space. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Annals of

  7. Working-memory training improves developmental dyslexia in Chinese children

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yan Luo; Jing Wang; Hanrong Wu; Dongmei Zhu; Yu Zhang

    2013-01-01

    Although plasticity in the neural system underlies working memory, and working memory can be improved by training, there is thus far no evidence that children with developmental dyslexia can were recruited from an elementary school in Wuhan, China. They received working-memory training, including training in visuospatial memory, verbal memory, and central executive tasks. The difficulty of the tasks was adjusted based on the performance of each subject, and the training sessions lasted 40 minutes per day, for 5 weeks. The results showed that working-memory training significantly enhanced performance on the nontrained working memory tasks such as the visuospatial, the verbal domains, and central executive tasks in children with developmental dyslexia. More importantly, the visual rhyming task and reading fluency task were also significantly improved by training. Progress on working memory measures was related to changes in reading skills. These experimental findings indicate that working memory is a pivotal factor in reading development among children with developmental dyslexia, and interventions to improve working memory may help dyslexic children to become more proficient in reading.

  8. Chemical composition and antifungal activity of Trigonella foenum-graecum L. varied with plant ploidy level and developmental stage

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Faten Omezzine

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available The efficacy of aerial parts’ organic extracts of diploid and mixoploid Trigonella foenum-graecum L. plants, harvested at three developmental stages (vegetative, flowering and fruiting was evaluated for their antifungal activity against Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. radicis-lycopersici (FORL and F. oxysporum f. sp. lycopersici (FOL. All tested extracts inhibited FORL and FOL mycelial growth. The organic extracts of diploid plants were found to be less toxic than mixoploid ones and this toxicity varied with the plant developmental stages. The diploids were most toxic, for the two strains, at the fruiting stage; however, mixoploids were more toxic at the vegetative stage for FOL and at flowering one for FORL. FOL was found to be more sensitive to fenugreek extracts when compared to FORL. LC–MS/MS analysis of methanolic extract of fenugreek aerial parts showed eleven different flavonol glycosides (quercetin, kaempferol and vitexin. Five novel components were identified, for the first time in fenugreek aerial parts, as kaempferol 3-O-β-d-glucopyranoside, kaempferol 7-O-glucoside, kaempferol 3-O-α-l-rhamnosyl (1→2 β-d-xyloside, kaempferol 7-O-β-d-glucopyranosyl (1–4 β-d-glucopyranoside and kaempferol 3-O-β-glucosyl (1→2 (6′-O-acetyl-β-d-galactoside, along with other known compounds of this species. To operate with the maximum efficiency, the allelopathic potential of a given plant, our study showed that it would be advisable to identify the most productive developmental stage of allelochemicals. Similarly, it seems that mixoploidy would be a simple and effective biotechnology tool to improve (in quantity and quality the allelochemicals’ production, since the extracts’ toxicity of diploid and mixoploid plants, was different.

  9. Biotechnological improvement of ornamental plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flavia Soledad Darqui

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The discovery of commercial transgenic varieties of orange petunias sold in Europe and the United States although they had never reached the approved status, and the consequent recommendation to destroy them, was the trigger to discuss about biotechnological improvement of ornamental plants. Inside the restricted world of 26 vegetal transgenic species, according to the ISAAA’s reports (http://www.isaaa.org, there are three ornamental species: carnation, rose and the Beijing University developed petunia; all of them with the same trait, a change in their colour. On the other hand, in 2014, the whole-genome sequence of carnation appeared which was the first and until now the only one among ornamental species. In this context, we review the publications from the last five years in petunia, rose, chrysanthemum and carnation. In these papers there are detailed descriptions of modification of the cascade of genes and transcription factors involved in stress situations, in different developmental stages and their regulation through different plant hormones. This knowledge will allow breeding for better and new varieties with changes in their abiotic or biotic stress tolerance, altered growth or yield and modified product quality as colour or fragrance.

  10. Evaluation of the magnitude and effects of bundle duct interaction in fuel assemblies at developmental plant conditions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Serell, D.C.; Kaplan, S.

    1980-09-01

    Purpose of this evaluation is to estimate the magnitude and effects of irradiation and creep induced fuel bundle deformations in the developmental plant. This report focuses on the trends of the results and the ability of present models to evaluate the assembly temperatures in the presence of bundle deformation. Although this analysis focuses on the developmental plant, the conclusions are applicable to LMFBR fuel assemblies in general if they have wire spacers

  11. RELAP5/MOD2 Overview and Developmental. Assessment Results from TMl-1 Plant Transient Analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lin, J. C.; Tsai, C. C.; Ransom, V. H.; Johnsen, G. W.

    2013-01-01

    RELAP5/MOD2 is a new version of the RELAP5 thermal-hydraulic computer code containing improved modeling features that provide a generic capability for pressurized water reactor transient simulation. The objective of this paper is to provide code users with an overview of the code and to report developmental assessment results obtained from a Three Mile Island Unit One plant transient analysis. The assessment shows that the injection of highly sub-cooled water into a high-pressure primary coolant system does not cause unphysical results or pose a problem for RELAP5/MOD2. (author)

  12. Elevated NaCl concentration improves cryotolerance and developmental competence of porcine oocytes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lin, L; Du, Y; Liu, Y

    2009-01-01

    High hydrostatic pressure has been reported to improve the fertilizing or developmental ability of mammalian spermatozoa, oocytes and embryos. This study investigated the effect of another stress, temporarily increased NaCl concentration, on cryotolerance and developmental competence of porcine...

  13. What Is There in Seeds? Vertically Transmitted Endophytic Resources for Sustainable Improvement in Plant Growth

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raheem Shahzad

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Phytobeneficial microbes, particularly endophytes, such as fungi and bacteria, are concomitant partners of plants throughout its developmental stages, including seed germination, root and stem growth, and fruiting. Endophytic microbes have been identified in plants that grow in a wide array of habitats; however, seed-borne endophytic microbes have not been fully explored yet. Seed-borne endophytes are of great interest because of their vertical transmission; their potential to produce various phytohormones, enzymes, antimicrobial compounds, and other secondary metabolites; and improve plant biomass and yield under biotic and abiotic stresses. This review addresses the current knowledge on endophytes, their ability to produce metabolites, and their influence on plant growth and stress mitigation.

  14. White matter microstructure and developmental improvement of hyperactive/impulsive symptoms in Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Francx, W.; Zwiers, M.P.; Mennes, M.; Oosterlaan, J.; Heslenfeld, D.J.; Hoekstra, P.; Hartman, C.A.; Franke, C.; Faraone, S.V.; O'Dwyer, L.; Buitelaar, J.K.

    2015-01-01

    Background A developmental improvement of symptoms in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is frequently reported, but the underlying neurobiological substrate has not been identified. The aim of this study was to determine whether white matter microstructure is related to developmental

  15. Evolutionary Developmental Soft Robotics As a Framework to Study Intelligence and Adaptive Behavior in Animals and Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francesco Corucci

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, a comprehensive methodology and simulation framework will be reviewed, designed in order to study the emergence of adaptive and intelligent behavior in generic soft-bodied creatures. By incorporating artificial evolutionary and developmental processes, the system allows to evolve complete creatures (brain, body, developmental properties, sensory, control system, etc. for different task environments. Whether the evolved creatures will resemble animals or plants is in general not known a priori, and depends on the specific task environment set up by the experimenter. In this regard, the system may offer a unique opportunity to explore differences and similarities between these two worlds. Different material properties can be simulated and optimized, from a continuum of soft/stiff materials, to the interconnection of heterogeneous structures, both found in animals and plants alike. The adopted genetic encoding and simulation environment are particularly suitable in order to evolve distributed sensory and control systems, which play a particularly important role in plants. After a general description of the system some case studies will be presented, focusing on the emergent properties of the evolved creatures. Particular emphasis will be on some unifying concepts that are thought to play an important role in the emergence of intelligent and adaptive behavior across both the animal and plant kingdoms, such as morphological computation and morphological developmental plasticity. Overall, with this paper, we hope to draw attention on set of tools, methodologies, ideas and results, which may be relevant to researchers interested in plant-inspired robotics and intelligence.

  16. Lettuce facing microcystins-rich irrigation water at different developmental stages: Effects on plant performance and microcystins bioaccumulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levizou, Efi; Statiris, George; Papadimitriou, Theodoti; Laspidou, Chrysi S; Kormas, Konstantinos Ar

    2017-09-01

    This study investigated the microcystins (MCs)-rich irrigation water effect on lettuce of different developmental stages, i.e. during a two months period, covering the whole period from seed germination to harvest at marketable size of the plant. We followed four lettuce plant groups receiving MCs-rich water (1.81μgl -1 of dissolved MCs), originating from the Karla Reservoir, central Greece: 1) from seeds, 2) the cotyledon, 3) two true leaves and 4) four true leaves stages, all of which were compared to control plants that received tap water. Lettuce growth, photosynthetic performance, biochemical and mineral characteristics, as well as MCs accumulation in leaves, roots and soil were measured. The overall performance of lettuce at various developmental stages pointed to increased tolerance since growth showed minor alterations and non-enzymatic antioxidants remained unaffected. Plants receiving MCs-rich water from the seed stage exhibited higher photosynthetic capacity, chlorophylls and leaf nitrogen content. Nevertheless, considerable MCs accumulation in various plant tissues occurred. The earlier in their development lettuce plants started receiving MCs-rich water, the more MCs they accumulated: roots and leaves of plants exposed to MCs-rich water from seeds and cotyledons stage exhibited doubled MCs concentrations compared to respective tissues of the 4 Leaves group. Furthermore, roots accumulated significantly higher MCs amounts than leaves of the same plant group. Concerning human health risk, the Estimated Daily Intake values (EDI) of Seed and Cotyledon groups leaves exceeded Tolerable Daily Intake (TDI) by a factor of 6, while 2 Leaves and 4 Leaves groups exceeded TDI by a factor of 4.4 and 2.4 respectively. Our results indicate that irrigation of lettuce with MCs-rich water may constitute a serious public health risk, especially when contaminated water is received from the very early developmental stages (seed and cotyledon). Finally, results obtained for

  17. Increased Rate of NAD Metabolism Shortens Plant Longevity by Accelerating Developmental Senescence in Arabidopsis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hashida, Shin-Nosuke; Itami, Taketo; Takahara, Kentaro; Hirabayashi, Takayuki; Uchimiya, Hirofumi; Kawai-Yamada, Maki

    2016-11-01

    NAD is a well-known co-enzyme that mediates hundreds of redox reactions and is the basis of various processes regulating cell responses to different environmental and developmental cues. The regulatory mechanism that determines the amount of cellular NAD and the rate of NAD metabolism remains unclear. We created Arabidopsis thaliana plants overexpressing the NAD synthase (NADS) gene that participates in the final step of NAD biosynthesis. NADS overexpression enhanced the activity of NAD biosynthesis but not the amounts of NAD + , NADH, NADP + or NADPH. However, the amounts of some intermediates were elevated, suggesting that NAD metabolism increased. The NAD redox state was greatly facilitated by an imbalance between NAD generation and degradation in response to bolting. Metabolite profiling and transcriptional analysis revealed that the drastic modulation of NAD redox homeostasis increased tricarboxylic acid flux, causing the ectopic generation of reactive oxygen species. Vascular bundles suffered from oxidative stress, leading to a malfunction in amino acid and organic acid transportation that caused early wilting of the flower stalk and shortened plant longevity, probably due to malnutrition. We concluded that the mechanism regulating the balance between NAD synthesis and degradation is important in the systemic plant response to developmental cues during the growth-phase transition. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Japanese Society of Plant Physiologists. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  18. Perspectives on plant vulnerabilities ampersand other plant and containment improvements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    LaChance, J.; Kolaczkowski, A.; Kahn, J.

    1996-01-01

    The primary goal of the Individual Plant Examination (IPE) Program was for licensees to identify plant-unique vulnerabilities and actions to address these vulnerabilities. A review of these vulnerabilities and plant improvements that were identified in the IPEs was performed as part of the IPE Insights Program sponsored by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). The purpose of this effort was to characterize the identified vulnerabilities and the impact of suggested plant improvements. No specific definition for open-quotes vulnerabilityclose quotes was provided in NRC Generic Letter 88-20 or in the subsequent NRC IPE submittal guidance documented in NUREG-1335. Thus licensees were left to use their own definitions. Only 20% of the plants explicitly stated that they had vulnerabilities. However, most licensees identified other plant improvements to address issues not explicitly classified as vulnerabilities, but pertaining to areas in which overall plant safety could potentially be increased. The various definitions of open-quotes vulnerabilityclose quotes used by the licensees, explicitly identified vulnerabilities, proposed plant improvements to address these vulnerabilities, and other plant improvements are summarized and discussed

  19. Specific developmental pathways underlie host specificity in the parasitic plant Orobanche

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hiscock, Simon

    2010-01-01

    Parasitic angiosperms are an ecologically and economically important group of plants. However our understanding of the basis for host specificity in these plants is embryonic. Recently we investigated host specificity in the parasitic angiosperm Orobanche minor, and demonstrated that this host generalist parasite comprises genetically defined races that are physiologically adapted to specific hosts. Populations occurring naturally on red clover (Trifolium pratense) and sea carrot (Daucus carota subsp. gummifer) respectively, showed distinct patterns of host specificity at various developmental stages, and a higher fitness on their natural hosts, suggesting these races are locally adapted. Here we discuss the implications of our findings from a broader perspective. We suggest that differences in signal responsiveness and perception by the parasite, as well as qualitative differences in signal production by the host, may elicit host specificity in this parasitic plant. Together with our earlier demonstration that these O. minor races are genetically distinct based on molecular markers, our recent data provide a snapshot of speciation in action, driven by host specificity. Indeed, host specificity may be an underestimated catalyst for speciation in parasitic plants generally. We propose that identifying host specific races using physiological techniques will complement conventional molecular marker-based approaches to provide a framework for delineating evolutionary relationships among cryptic host-specific parasitic plants. PMID:20081361

  20. Improved core monitoring for improved plant operations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mueller, N.P.

    1987-01-01

    Westinghouse has recently installed a core on-line surveillance, monitoring and operations systems (COSMOS), which uses only currently available core and plant data to accurately reconstruct the core average axial and radial power distributions. This information is provided to the operator in an immediately usable, human-engineered format and is accumulated for use in application programs that provide improved core performance predictive tools and a data base for improved fuel management. Dynamic on-line real-time axial and radial core monitoring supports a variety of plant operations to provide a favorable cost/benefit ratio for such a system. Benefits include: (1) relaxation or elimination of certain technical specifications to reduce surveillance and reporting requirements and allow higher availability factors, (2) improved information displays, predictive tools, and control strategies to support more efficient core control and reduce effluent production, and (3) expanded burnup data base for improved fuel management. Such systems can be backfit into operating plants without changing the existing instrumentation and control system and can frequently be implemented on existing plant computer capacity

  1. White matter microstructure and developmental improvement of hyperactive/impulsive symptoms in Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Francx, W.C.L.; Zwiers, M.P.; Mennes, M.J.J.; Oosterlaan, J.; Heslenfeld, D.J.; Hoekstra, P.J.; Hartman, C.A.; Franke, B.; Faraone, S.V; O'Dwyer, L.G.; Buitelaar, J.K.

    2015-01-01

    Background A developmental improvement of symptoms in Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is frequently reported, but the underlying neurobiological substrate has not been identified. The aim of this study was to determine whether white matter microstructure is related to developmental

  2. White matter microstructure and developmental improvement of hyperactive/impulsive symptoms in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Francx, Winke; Zwiers, Marcel P.; Mennes, Maarten; Oosterlaan, Jaap; Heslenfeld, Dirk; Hoekstra, Pieter J.; Hartman, Catharina A.; Franke, Barbara; Faraone, Stephen V.; O'Dwyer, Laurence; Buitelaar, Jan K.

    2015-01-01

    Background: A developmental improvement of symptoms in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is frequently reported, but the underlying neurobiological substrate has not been identified. The aim of this study was to determine whether white matter microstructure is related to developmental

  3. Programs to improve plant performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Felmus, N.L.

    1987-01-01

    Looking toward the 1990's, we see a period in which our industry will face the challenge of improving the performance of the nuclear plants which are built and operating. The skills and technology are at hand to make good plant performance a reality and we believe the time has come to use them to achieve that end. As reserve margins decline, utilities and their regulators will increasingly seek to tap the unexploited capacity tied up in plants operating below their optimum availability. This paper describes a number of the programs, plant improvements and operations improvements which can yield a significant increase in nuclear plant availability and capacity factor now and into the 1990's. (author)

  4. Study on determination of planting time for some cauliflower cultivars (Brassica oleracea var. botrytis) under Samsun ecological conditions by using plant growth and developmental models based on thermal time

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Uzun, S.; Peksen, A.

    2000-01-01

    In this study, it was aimed to determine the effects of different planting times (01 July, 15 July and 01 August) on the growth and developmental components of some cauliflower cultivars (Snow King, White Cliff, White Rock, White Latin, Me & Carillon, SG 4004 F1 and Serrano) by using plant growth and developmental models. From the results of the present study, it was revealed that thermal time elapsing from planting to curd initiation should be high (about 1200 degree centigrade days) to stimulate vegetative growth while thermal time elapsing from curd initiation to the harvest should be low (around 200 degree centigrade days) in terms of curd weight. The highest curd weight and yield were obtained from the plants of the first planting time, namely 01 July, compared to the other planting times (15 July and 01 August). Although there were no significant differences between the cultivars, the highest yield was obtained form Cv. Me & Carillon (13.25 t ha-1), SG 4004 F1 (13.14 t ha-1) and White Rock (11.51 t ha-1) respectively

  5. The Arabidopsis Rho of Plants GTPase AtROP6 Functions in Developmental and Pathogen Response Pathways1[C][W][OA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poraty-Gavra, Limor; Zimmermann, Philip; Haigis, Sabine; Bednarek, Paweł; Hazak, Ora; Stelmakh, Oksana Rogovoy; Sadot, Einat; Schulze-Lefert, Paul; Gruissem, Wilhelm; Yalovsky, Shaul

    2013-01-01

    How plants coordinate developmental processes and environmental stress responses is a pressing question. Here, we show that Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) Rho of Plants6 (AtROP6) integrates developmental and pathogen response signaling. AtROP6 expression is induced by auxin and detected in the root meristem, lateral root initials, and leaf hydathodes. Plants expressing a dominant negative AtROP6 (rop6DN) under the regulation of its endogenous promoter are small and have multiple inflorescence stems, twisted leaves, deformed leaf epidermis pavement cells, and differentially organized cytoskeleton. Microarray analyses of rop6DN plants revealed that major changes in gene expression are associated with constitutive salicylic acid (SA)-mediated defense responses. In agreement, their free and total SA levels resembled those of wild-type plants inoculated with a virulent powdery mildew pathogen. The constitutive SA-associated response in rop6DN was suppressed in mutant backgrounds defective in SA signaling (nonexpresser of PR genes1 [npr1]) or biosynthesis (salicylic acid induction deficient2 [sid2]). However, the rop6DN npr1 and rop6DN sid2 double mutants retained the aberrant developmental phenotypes, indicating that the constitutive SA response can be uncoupled from ROP function(s) in development. rop6DN plants exhibited enhanced preinvasive defense responses to a host-adapted virulent powdery mildew fungus but were impaired in preinvasive defenses upon inoculation with a nonadapted powdery mildew. The host-adapted powdery mildew had a reduced reproductive fitness on rop6DN plants, which was retained in mutant backgrounds defective in SA biosynthesis or signaling. Our findings indicate that both the morphological aberrations and altered sensitivity to powdery mildews of rop6DN plants result from perturbations that are independent from the SA-associated response. These perturbations uncouple SA-dependent defense signaling from disease resistance execution. PMID

  6. Working-memory training improves developmental dyslexia in Chinese children★

    OpenAIRE

    Luo, Yan; Wang, Jing; Wu, Hanrong; Zhu, Dongmei; Zhang, Yu

    2013-01-01

    Although plasticity in the neural system underlies working memory, and working memory can be improved by training, there is thus far no evidence that children with developmental dyslexia can benefit from working-memory training. In the present study, thirty dyslexic children aged 8–11 years were recruited from an elementary school in Wuhan, China. They received working-memory training, including training in visuospatial memory, verbal memory, and central executive tasks. The difficulty of the...

  7. Improvement of plant reliability in PT. Badak LNG plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Achmad, S.; Somantri, A.

    1997-01-01

    PT. Badak's LNG sales commitment has been steadily increasing, therefore, there has been more emphasis to improve and maintain the LNG plant reliability. From plant operation historical records, Badak LNG plant experienced a high number of LNG process train trips and down time for 1977 through 1988. The highest annual number of LNG plant trips (50 times) occurred in 1983 and the longest LNG process train down time (1259 train-hours) occurred in 1988. Since 1989, PT. Badak has been able to reduce the number of LNG process train trips and down time significantly. In 1994 the number of LNG process train trips and was 18 times and the longest LNG process train down time was 377 train-hours. This plant reliability improvement was achieved by implementing plant reliability improvement programs beginning with the design of the new facilities and continuing with the maintenance and modification of the existing facilities. To improve reliability of the existing facilities, PT. Badak has been implementing comprehensive maintenance programs, to reduce the frequency and down time of the plant, such as Preventive and Predictive Maintenance as well as procurement material improvement since PT. Badak location is in a remote area. By implementing the comprehensive reliability maintenance, PT. Badak has been able to reduce the LNG process train trips to 18 and down time to 337 train hours in 1994 with the subsequent maintenance cost reduction. The average PT. Badak plant availability from 1985 to 1995 is 94.59%. New facilities were designed according to the established PT. Badak design philosophy, master plan and specification. Design of new facilities was modified to avoid certain problems from past experience. (au)

  8. Developmental improvement and age-related decline in unfamiliar face matching.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Megreya, Ahmed M; Bindemann, Markus

    2015-01-01

    Age-related changes have been documented widely in studies of face recognition and eyewitness identification. However, it is not clear whether these changes arise from general developmental differences in memory or occur specifically during the perceptual processing of faces. We report two experiments to track such perceptual changes using a 1-in- 10 (experiment 1) and 1-in-1 (experiment 2) matching task for unfamiliar faces. Both experiments showed improvements in face matching during childhood and adult-like accuracy levels by adolescence. In addition, face-matching performance declined in adults of the age of 65 years. These findings indicate that developmental improvements and aging-related differences in face processing arise from changes in the perceptual encoding of faces. A clear face inversion effect was also present in all age groups. This indicates that those age-related changes in face matching reflect a quantitative effect, whereby typical face processes are engaged but do not operate at the best-possible level. These data suggest that part of the problem of eyewitness identification in children and elderly persons might reflect impairments in the perceptual processing of unfamiliar faces.

  9. Communication Improvement through Music: The Case of Children with Developmental Disabilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krikeli, Vasiliki; Michailidis, Anastasios; Klavdianou, Niovi-Dionysia

    2010-01-01

    This paper investigates the effect of music on the communication improvement of children with developmental disabilities. Forty subjects (18 boys and 22 girls) 7-12 years old, were divided into an experimental group (n = 20) which participated in music therapy activities and a control group (n = 20) which was discussing and watching television,…

  10. Anthropogenic host plant expansion leads a nettle-feeding butterfly out of the forest: consequences for larval survival and developmental plasticity in adult morphology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merckx, Thomas; Serruys, Mélanie; Van Dyck, Hans

    2015-04-01

    Recent anthropogenic eutrophication has meant that host plants of nettle-feeding insects became quasi-omnipresent in fertile regions of Western Europe. However, host plant resource quality - in terms of microclimate and nutritional value - may vary considerably between the 'original' forest habitat and 'recent' agricultural habitat. Here, we compared development in both environmental settings using a split-brood design, so as to explore to what extent larval survival and adult morphology in the nettle-feeding butterfly Aglais urticae are influenced by the anthropogenic environment. Nettles along field margins had higher C/N ratios and provided warmer microclimates to larvae. Larvae developed 20% faster and tended to improve their survival rates, on the agricultural land compared to woodland. Our split-brood approach indicated plastic responses within families, but also family effects in the phenotypic responses. Adult males and females had darker wing pigmentation in the drier and warmer agricultural environment, which contrasts with the thermal melanism hypothesis. Developmental plasticity in response to this microclimatically different and more variable habitat was associated with a broader phenotypic parameter space for the species. Both habitat expansion and developmental plasticity are likely contributors to the ecological and evolutionary success of these nettle-feeding insects in anthropogenic environments under high nitrogen load.

  11. A phosphate starvation-driven bidirectional promoter as a potential tool for crop improvement and in vitro plant biotechnology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Araceli, Oropeza-Aburto; Alfredo, Cruz-Ramírez; Javier, Mora-Macías; Luis, Herrera-Estrella

    2017-05-01

    Phosphate (Pi)-deficient soils are a major limitant factor for crop production in many regions of the world. Despite that plants have innovated several developmental and biochemical strategies to deal with this stress, there are still massive extensions of land which combine several abiotic stresses, including phosphate starvation, that limit their use for plant growth and food production. In several plant species, a genetic programme underlies the biochemical and developmental responses of the organism to cope with low phosphate (Pi) availability. Both protein- and miRNA-coding genes involved in the adaptative response are transcriptionally activated upon Pi starvation. Several of the responsive genes have been identified as transcriptional targets of PHR1, a transcription factor that binds a conserved cis-element called PHR1-binding site (P1BS). Our group has previously described and characterized a minimal genetic arrangement that includes two P1BS elements, as a phosphate-responsive enhancer (EZ2). Here, we report the engineering and successful use of a phosphate-dependent bidirectional promoter, which has been designed and constructed based on the palindromic sequences of the two P1BS elements present in EZ2. This bidirectional promoter has a potential use in both plant in vitro approaches and in the generation of improved crops adapted to Pi starvation and other abiotic stresses. © 2016 The Authors. Plant Biotechnology Journal published by Society for Experimental Biology and The Association of Applied Biologists and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  12. Evaluation of developmental responses of two crop plants exposed to silver and zinc oxide nanoparticles

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pokhrel, Lok R. [Department of Environmental Health, College of Public Health, East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, TN 37614–1700 (United States); Dubey, Brajesh, E-mail: bdubey@uoguelph.ca [Environmental Engineering, School of Engineering, University of Guelph, 50 Stone Road East, Guelph, Ontario (Canada)

    2013-05-01

    The increasing applications of different nanomaterials in the myriad of nano-enabled products and their potential for leaching have raised considerable environmental, health and safety (EHS) concerns. As systematic studies investigating potential anomalies in the morphology and anatomy of crop plants are scarce, herein we report on the developmental responses of two agriculturally significant crop plants, maize (Zea mays L.) and cabbage (Brassica oleracea var. capitata L.), upon in vitro exposure to nanoparticles of citrate-coated silver (Citrate–nAg) and zinc oxide (nZnO). Analyses involve histology of the primary root morphology and anatomy using light microscopy, metal biouptake, moisture content, rate of germination, and root elongation. Comparative toxicity profiles of the ionic salts (AgNO{sub 3} and ZnSO{sub 4}) are developed. Notably, we uncover structural changes in maize primary root cells upon exposure to Citrate–nAg, nZnO, AgNO{sub 3}, and ZnSO{sub 4}, possibly due to metal biouptake, suggesting potential for functional impairments in the plant growth and development. Citrate–nAg exposure results in lower Ag biouptake compared to AgNO{sub 3} treatment in maize. Microscopic evidence reveals ‘tunneling-like effect’ with nZnO treatment, while exposure to AgNO{sub 3} leads to cell erosion in maize root apical meristem. In maize, a significant change in metaxylem count is evident with Citrate–nAg, AgNO{sub 3}, and ZnSO{sub 4} treatment, but not with nZnO treatment (p > 0.1). In both maize and cabbage, measures of germination and root elongation reveal lower nanoparticle toxicity compared to free ions. As moisture data do not support osmotically-induced water stress hypothesis for explaining toxicity, we discuss other proximate mechanisms including the potential role of growth hormones and transcription factors. These findings highlight previously overlooked, anatomically significant effects of metal nanoparticles, and recommend considering

  13. Intranasal insulin to improve developmental delay in children with 22q13 deletion syndrome: an exploratory clinical trial

    OpenAIRE

    Schmidt, Heinrich; Giese, Renate; Enders, Angelika; Kern, W.; Hallschmid, M.

    2009-01-01

    Background: The 22q13 deletion syndrome (Phelan– McDermid syndrome) is characterised by a global developmental delay, absent or delayed speech, generalised hypotonia, autistic behaviour and characteristic phenotypic features. Intranasal insulin has been shown to improve declarative memory in healthy adult subjects and in patients with Alzheimer disease. Aims: To assess if intranasal insulin is also able to improve the developmental delay in children with 22q13 delet...

  14. ALA Pretreatment Improves Waterlogging Tolerance of Fig Plants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuyan An

    Full Text Available 5-aminolevulinic acid (ALA, a natural and environmentally friendly plant growth regulator, can improve plant tolerance to various environmental stresses. However, whether ALA can improve plant waterlogging tolerance is unknown. Here, we investigated the effects of ALA pretreatment on the waterlogging-induced damage of fig (Ficus carica Linn. plants, which often suffer from waterlogging stress. ALA pretreatment significantly alleviated stress-induced morphological damage, increased leaf relative water content (RWC, and reduced leaf superoxide anion ([Formula: see text] production rate and malonaldehyde (MDA content in fig leaves, indicating ALA mitigates waterlogging stress of fig plants. We further demonstrated that ALA pretreatment largely promoted leaf chlorophyll content, photosynthetic electron transfer ability, and photosynthetic performance index, indicating ALA significantly improves plant photosynthetic efficiency under waterlogging stress. Moreover, ALA pretreatment significantly increased activities of leaf superoxide dismutase (SOD and peroxidase (POD, root vigor, and activities of root alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH, and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH, indicating ALA also significantly improves antioxidant ability and root function of fig plants under waterlogging stress. Taken together, ALA pretreatment improves waterlogging tolerance of fig plants significantly, and the promoted root respiration, leaf photosynthesis, and antioxidant ability may contribute greatly to this improvement. Our data firstly shows that ALA can improve plant waterlogging tolerance.

  15. Developmental improvements in the resolution and capacity of visual working memory share a common source

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simmering, Vanessa R.; Miller, Hilary E.

    2016-01-01

    The nature of visual working memory (VWM) representations is currently a source of debate between characterizations as slot-like versus a flexibly-divided pool of resources. Recently, a dynamic neural field model has been proposed as an alternative account that focuses more on the processes by which VWM representations are formed, maintained, and used in service of behavior. This dynamic model has explained developmental increases in VWM capacity and resolution through strengthening excitatory and inhibitory connections. Simulations of developmental improvements in VWM resolution suggest that one important change is the accuracy of comparisons between items held in memory and new inputs. Thus, the ability to detect changes is a critical component of developmental improvements in VWM performance across tasks, leading to the prediction that capacity and resolution should correlate during childhood. Comparing 5- to 8-year-old children’s performance across color discrimination and change detection tasks revealed the predicted correlation between estimates of VWM capacity and resolution, supporting the hypothesis that increasing connectivity underlies improvements in VWM during childhood. These results demonstrate the importance of formalizing the processes that support the use of VWM, rather than focusing solely on the nature of representations. We conclude by considering our results in the broader context of VWM development. PMID:27329264

  16. Distribution of linker histone variants during plant cell differentiation in the developmental zones of the maize root, dedifferentiation in callus culture after auxin treatment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ANASTASIOS ALATZAS

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Although several linker histone variants have been studied in both animal and plant organisms, little is known about their distribution during processes that involve alterations in chromatin function, such as differentiation, dedifferentiation and hormone treatment. In this study, we identified linker histone variants by using specific anti-histone Hl antibodies. Each variant's ratio to total Hl in the three developmental zones of maize (Zea mays L. root and in callus cultures derived from them was estimated in order to define possible alterations either during plant cell differentiation or during their dedifferentiation. We also evaluated linker histone variants' ratios in the developmental zones of maize roots treated with auxin in order to examine the effects of exogenous applied auxin to linker histone variant distribution. Finally, immunohistochemical detection was used to identify the root tissues containing each variant and correlate them with the physiological status of the plant cells. According to the results presented in this study, linker histone variants' ratios are altered in the developmental zones of maize root, while they are similar to the meristematic zone in samples from callus cultures and to the differentiation zone in samples from roots treated with auxin. We propose that the alterations in linker histone variants' ratios are correlated with plant cell differentiation and dedifferentiation.

  17. Evolutionary Developmental Robotics: Improving Morphology and Control of Physical Robots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vujovic, Vuk; Rosendo, Andre; Brodbeck, Luzius; Iida, Fumiya

    2017-01-01

    Evolutionary algorithms have previously been applied to the design of morphology and control of robots. The design space for such tasks can be very complex, which can prevent evolution from efficiently discovering fit solutions. In this article we introduce an evolutionary-developmental (evo-devo) experiment with real-world robots. It allows robots to grow their leg size to simulate ontogenetic morphological changes, and this is the first time that such an experiment has been performed in the physical world. To test diverse robot morphologies, robot legs of variable shapes were generated during the evolutionary process and autonomously built using additive fabrication. We present two cases with evo-devo experiments and one with evolution, and we hypothesize that the addition of a developmental stage can be used within robotics to improve performance. Moreover, our results show that a nonlinear system-environment interaction exists, which explains the nontrivial locomotion patterns observed. In the future, robots will be present in our daily lives, and this work introduces for the first time physical robots that evolve and grow while interacting with the environment.

  18. Developmental Mechanisms Underlying Improved Contrast Thresholds for Discriminations of Orientation Signals Embedded in Noise

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seong Taek eJeon

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available We combined an external noise paradigm with an efficient procedure for obtaining contrast thresholds (Lesmes et al., 2006 in order to model developmental changes during childhood. Specifically, we measured the contrast thresholds of 5-, 7-, 9-year-olds and adults (n = 20/age in a two alternative forced-choice orientation discrimination task over a wide range of external noise levels and at three levels of accuracy. Overall, as age increased, contrast thresholds decreased over the entire range of external noise levels tested. The decrease was greatest between 5 and 7 years of age. The reduction in threshold after age 5 was greater in the high than the low external noise region, a pattern implying greater tolerance to the irrelevant background noise as children became older. To model the mechanisms underlying these developmental changes in terms of internal noise components, we adapted the original perceptual template model (Lu and Dosher, 1998 and normalized the magnitude of performance changes against the performance of 5-year-olds. The resulting model provided an excellent fit (r2 = 0.985 to the contrast thresholds at multiple levels of accuracy (60, 75, and 90% across a wide range of external noise levels. The improvements in contrast thresholds with age were best modelled by a combination of reductions in internal additive noise, reductions in internal multiplicative noise, and improvements in excluding external noise by template retuning. In line with the data, the improvement was greatest between 5 and 7 years of age, accompanied by a 39% reduction in additive noise, 71% reduction in multiplicative noise, and 45% improvement in external noise exclusion. The modelled improvements likely reflect developmental changes at the cortical level, rather than changes in front-end structural properties (Kiorpes et al., 2003.

  19. Plant improvement by known-function genes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jesús Quiroz Chávez

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Plant molecular improvement by recombinant DNA technology represents an advantage to obtain new varieties or traits. This technique is promised for genetic improvement of crop plants. Lines with increased yield, quality, disease resistance, or tolerant to abiotic stress have been obtained, with clear advantages for producers, marketers and consumers. However, they have several limitations in its application to agriculture because of its risk and hazards. The aim of the document is to show the advantages and disadvantages of GM crop plant, to develop represent an opportunity to have new exotic traits.

  20. Lumichrome and riboflavin are two novel symbiotic signals eliciting developmental changes in both monocot and dicot plant species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Felix Dapare Dakora

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Lumichrome and riboflavin are novel molecules from rhizobial exudates that stimulate plant growth. Developmental changes elicited by lumichrome at very low nanomolar concentrations (5 nM include early initiation of trifoliate leaves, expansion of unifoliate and trifoliate leaves, increased stem elongation and leaf area, and consequently greater biomass accumulation in monocots and dicots. However, higher lumichrome concentration (50 nM depressed root development and reduced growth of unifoliate and second trifoliate leaves. Applying either 10 nM lumichrome, 10 nM ABA, or 10 ml of infective rhizobial cells (0.2 OD600 to roots of monocots and dicots for 44 h produced identical effects, which included decreased stomatal conductance and leaf transpiration in Bambara groundnut, soybean and maize, increased stomatal conductance and transpiration in cowpea and lupin, and elevated root respiration in maize (19% by rhizobia and 20% by lumichrome. Extracellular exudation of lumichrome, riboflavin and IAA was greater in N2-fixing rhizobia than non-fixing bacteria, indicating their role as symbiotic signals. Xylem concentration of lumichrome in cowpea and soybean was greater in plants inoculated with infective rhizobia and treated with lumichrome (61.2 µmol lumichrome.ml-1 sap, followed by uninoculated plants receiving lumichrome (41.12 µmol lumichrome.ml-1 sap, and lowest in uninoculated, lumichrome-free plants (26.8 µmol lumichrome.ml-1 sap. Overall, soybean showed greater xylem concentration of lumichrome and a correspondingly increased accumulation in leaves relative to cowpea. As a result, soybean exhibited dramatic developmental changes than cowpea. Taken together, lumichrome and riboflavin secreted by soil rhizobia function as environmental cues for sensing stress. The fact that exogenous application of ABA to plant roots caused the same effect as lumichrome on stomatal functioning suggests molecular cross-talk in plant response to environmental

  1. Balance of plant improvements for future reactor projects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hollingshaus, H.

    1987-01-01

    Many studies have shown that improvements in portions of the plant other than the reactor systems can yield large cost savings during the design, construction, and operation of future reactor power plants. This portion is defined as the Balance of Plant which includes virtually everything except the equipment furnished by the Nuclear Steam Supply System manufacturer. It normally includes the erection of the entire plant including the NSSS. Cost of BOP equipment, engineering and construction work is therefore most of the cost of the plant. Improvements in the BOP have been identified that will substantially reduce nuclear plant cost and construction time while at the same time increasing availability and operability and improving safety. Improvements achieved through standardizatoin, simplification, three-dimensional (3D) computer-aided design, modular construction, innovative construction techniques, and applications for Artificial Intelligence Systems are described. (author)

  2. Evolutionary CANDU 9 plant improvements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yu, S.K.W.

    1999-01-01

    The CANDU 9 is a 935 MW(e) nuclear power plant (NPP) based on the multi-unit Darlington and Bruce B designs with additional enhancements from our ongoing engineering and research programs. Added to the advantages of using proven systems and components, CANDU 9 offers improvement features with enhanced safety, improved operability and maintenance including a control centre with advanced man-machine interface, and improved project delivery in both engineering and construction. The CANDU 9 NPP design incorporated safety enhancements through careful attention to emerging licensing and safety issues. The designers assessed, revised and evolved such systems as the moderator, end shield, containment and emergency core cooling (ECC) systems while providing an integrated final design that is more passive and severe-accident-immune. AECL uses a feedback process to incorporate lessons learned from operating plants, from current projects experiences and from the implementation or construction phase of previous projects. Most of the requirements for design improvements are based on a systematic review of current operating CANDU stations in the areas of design and reliability, operability, and maintainability. The CANDU 9 Control Centre provides plant staff with improved operability and maintainability capabilities due to the combination of systematic design with human factors engineering and enhanced operating and diagnostics features. The use of advanced engineering tools and modem construction methods will reduce project implementation risk on project costs and schedules. (author)

  3. Training-induced recovery of low-level vision followed by mid-level perceptual improvements in developmental object and face agnosia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lev, Maria; Gilaie-Dotan, Sharon; Gotthilf-Nezri, Dana; Yehezkel, Oren; Brooks, Joseph L; Perry, Anat; Bentin, Shlomo; Bonneh, Yoram; Polat, Uri

    2015-01-01

    Long-term deprivation of normal visual inputs can cause perceptual impairments at various levels of visual function, from basic visual acuity deficits, through mid-level deficits such as contour integration and motion coherence, to high-level face and object agnosia. Yet it is unclear whether training during adulthood, at a post-developmental stage of the adult visual system, can overcome such developmental impairments. Here, we visually trained LG, a developmental object and face agnosic individual. Prior to training, at the age of 20, LG's basic and mid-level visual functions such as visual acuity, crowding effects, and contour integration were underdeveloped relative to normal adult vision, corresponding to or poorer than those of 5-6 year olds (Gilaie-Dotan, Perry, Bonneh, Malach & Bentin, 2009). Intensive visual training, based on lateral interactions, was applied for a period of 9 months. LG's directly trained but also untrained visual functions such as visual acuity, crowding, binocular stereopsis and also mid-level contour integration improved significantly and reached near-age-level performance, with long-term (over 4 years) persistence. Moreover, mid-level functions that were tested post-training were found to be normal in LG. Some possible subtle improvement was observed in LG's higher-order visual functions such as object recognition and part integration, while LG's face perception skills have not improved thus far. These results suggest that corrective training at a post-developmental stage, even in the adult visual system, can prove effective, and its enduring effects are the basis for a revival of a developmental cascade that can lead to reduced perceptual impairments. © 2014 The Authors. Developmental Science Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  4. Photo-biotechnology as a tool to improve agronomic traits in crops.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gururani, Mayank Anand; Ganesan, Markkandan; Song, Pill-Soon

    2015-01-01

    Phytochromes are photosensory phosphoproteins with crucial roles in plant developmental responses to light. Functional studies of individual phytochromes have revealed their distinct roles in the plant's life cycle. Given the importance of phytochromes in key plant developmental processes, genetically manipulating phytochrome expression offers a promising approach to crop improvement. Photo-biotechnology refers to the transgenic expression of phytochrome transgenes or variants of such transgenes. Several studies have indicated that crop cultivars can be improved by modulating the expression of phytochrome genes. The improved traits include enhanced yield, improved grass quality, shade-tolerance, and stress resistance. In this review, we discuss the transgenic expression of phytochrome A and its hyperactive mutant (Ser599Ala-PhyA) in selected crops, such as Zoysia japonica (Japanese lawn grass), Agrostis stolonifera (creeping bentgrass), Oryza sativa (rice), Solanum tuberosum (potato), and Ipomea batatas (sweet potato). The transgenic expression of PhyA and its mutant in various plant species imparts biotechnologically useful traits. Here, we highlight recent advances in the field of photo-biotechnology and review the results of studies in which phytochromes or variants of phytochromes were transgenically expressed in various plant species. We conclude that photo-biotechnology offers an excellent platform for developing crops with improved properties. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. System 80+ Design and Licensing : Improving Plant Reliability

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Newman, Robert E.

    1989-01-01

    The U. S. nuclear industry is striving to improve plant reliability and availability through improved plant design, component designs and plant maintenance. In an effort to improve safety and to demonstrate that commercial nuclear power is economically competitive with other energy sources, the utilities, nuclear vendors, architect engineers and constructors, and component suppliers are all participating in an industry-wide effort to develop improved Light Water Reactor (LWR) designs that are based upon the many years of successful LWR operation. In an age when the world faces the environmental pressures of the greenhouse effect and acid rain, electricity generated from nuclear energy must play an increasing role in the energy picture of Korea, the United States and the rest of the world. This paper discusses the plant availability requirement that has been established by the industry-wide effort mentioned above. After briefly describing Combustion Engineering's program for development of the System 80 Plus standard design and the participation of the Korea Advanced Energy Research Institute (KAERI) in the program, the paper then describes the design features that are being incorporated into System 80+. The industry ALRR Program has established a very ambitious criterion of 87% for the plant availability of future nuclear units. To satisfy such a requirement, the next generation of nuclear plants will include a great many design improvements that reflect the hundreds of years of operating experience that we have accrued. C-ESA's System 80+ will include a number of design changes that improve operating margins and make the plant easier to operate and maintain. Not surprisingly, there is a great deal of overlap between improved safety and improved reliability. In the end, our design will satisfy the future needs of the utilities, the regulators, and the public. C-E is very pleased that KAERI is working with US to achieve these important goals

  6. Thermal diagnostics in power plant to improve performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Meister, H.

    1995-01-01

    The improvement of older power plants by changing poor performing components is a cost effective method to increase the capacity of the units. The necessary information for the detection of components that are to be replaced can be obtained from heat rate and component tests with accuracy instrumentation. The discussed methods and tools provided by ABB Were used with success in several power plants in Europe. These tools are in the process of permanent improvement and can be used in almost any type of power plant. Due to the reasons discussed above, there is a high potential for improvement of a lot of power plants in the next decade. (author)

  7. The Plant Circadian Clock: From a Simple Timekeeper to a Complex Developmental Manager.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanchez, Sabrina E; Kay, Steve A

    2016-12-01

    The plant circadian clock allows organisms to anticipate the predictable changes in the environment by adjusting their developmental and physiological traits. In the last few years, it was determined that responses known to be regulated by the oscillator are also able to modulate clock performance. These feedback loops and their multilayer communications create a complex web, and confer on the clock network a role that exceeds the measurement of time. In this article, we discuss the current knowledge of the wiring of the clock, including the interplay with metabolism, hormone, and stress pathways in the model species Arabidopsis thaliana We outline the importance of this system in crop agricultural traits, highlighting the identification of natural alleles that alter the pace of the timekeeper. We report evidence supporting the understanding of the circadian clock as a master regulator of plant life, and we hypothesize on its relevant role in the adaptability to the environment and the impact on the fitness of most organisms. Copyright © 2016 Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press; all rights reserved.

  8. Developmental instability and fitness in Periploca laevigata experiencing grazing disturbance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alados, C.L.; Giner, M.L.; Dehesa, L.; Escos, J.; Barroso, F.; Emlen, J.M.; Freeman, D.C.

    2002-01-01

    We investigated the sensitivity of developmental instability measurements (leaf fluctuating asymmetry, floral radial asymmetry, and shoot translational asymmetry) to a long‐standing natural stress (grazing) in a palatable tannin‐producing shrub (Periploca laevigata Aiton). We also assessed the relationship between these measures of developmental instability and fitness components (growth and floral production). Developmental instability, measured by translational asymmetry, was the most accurate estimator of a plant’s condition and, consequently, environmental stress. Plants with less translational asymmetry grew more and produced more flowers. Plants from the medium‐grazed population were developmentally more stable, as estimated by translational and floral asymmetry, than either more heavily or more lightly grazed populations. Leaf fluctuating asymmetry was positively correlated with tannin concentration. The pattern of internode growth also responded to grazing impact. Plants under medium to heavy grazing pressure accelerated early growth and consequently escaped herbivory later in the season, i.e., at the beginning of the spring, when grazing activity was concentrated in herbaceous plants. Periploca laevigata accelerated growth and finished growing sooner than in the other grazing treatment. Thus, its annual growth was more mature and less palatable later in the season when grazers typically concentrate on shrubs. The reduction of developmental instability under medium grazing is interpreted as a direct effect of grazing and not as the release from competition.

  9. Guide for prioritizing power plant productivity improvement projects: handbook of availability improvement methodology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1981-01-01

    As part of its program to help improve electrical power plant productivity, the Department of Energy (DOE) has developed a methodology for evaluating productivity improvement projects. This handbook presents a simplified version of this methodology called the Availability Improvement Methodology (AIM), which provides a systematic approach for prioritizing plant improvement projects. Also included in this handbook is a description of data taking requirements necessary to support the AIM methodology, benefit/cost analysis, and root cause analysis for tracing persistent power plant problems. In applying the AIM methodology, utility engineers should be mindful that replacement power costs are frequently greater for forced outages than for planned outages. Equivalent availability includes both. A cost-effective ranking of alternative plant improvement projects must discern between those projects which will reduce forced outages and those which might reduce planned outages. As is the case with any analytical procedure, engineering judgement must be exercised with respect to results of purely mathematical calculations

  10. Improvement on reliability of control system in power plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Taguchi, S.; Mizumoto, T.; Hirose, Y.; Kashiwai, J.; Takami, I.; Shono, M.; Roji, Y.; Kizaki, S.

    1985-01-01

    Studies made of Japanese PWR operating experiences have revealed that failures in the control system are the primary causes of unscheduled shutdowns. An attempt has, therefore, been made to improve the reliability of the control system in order to raise the plant reliability. The following are the procedures applied to solve the issue; study of operating experiences, fault tree analysis and failure mode and effects analysis. Improvement measures are developed for the control system whose failure threatens to cause the plant trip during the plant life. These systems are the main feedwater control system, rod control system, pressurizer control system and main steam control system in the primary control system. As a result, the plant unavailability is expected to be reduced significantly by applying the improvements. The improvements are applied to the plants under construction and the operating plants in co-operation with utilities and vendors. (author)

  11. Plant aquaporins: roles in plant physiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Guowei; Santoni, Véronique; Maurel, Christophe

    2014-05-01

    Aquaporins are membrane channels that facilitate the transport of water and small neutral molecules across biological membranes of most living organisms. Here, we present comprehensive insights made on plant aquaporins in recent years, pointing to their molecular and physiological specificities with respect to animal or microbial counterparts. In plants, aquaporins occur as multiple isoforms reflecting a high diversity of cellular localizations and various physiological substrates in addition to water. Of particular relevance for plants is the transport by aquaporins of dissolved gases such as carbon dioxide or metalloids such as boric or silicic acid. The mechanisms that determine the gating and subcellular localization of plant aquaporins are extensively studied. They allow aquaporin regulation in response to multiple environmental and hormonal stimuli. Thus, aquaporins play key roles in hydraulic regulation and nutrient transport in roots and leaves. They contribute to several plant growth and developmental processes such as seed germination or emergence of lateral roots. Plants with genetically altered aquaporin functions are now tested for their ability to improve plant resistance to stresses. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled Aquaporins. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Rhizosphere pseudomonads as probiotics improving plant health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Young Cheol; Anderson, Anne J

    2018-04-20

    Many root-colonizing microbes are multifaceted in traits that improve plant health. Although isolates designated as biological control agents directly reduce pathogen growth, many exert additional beneficial features that parallel changes induced in animal and other hosts by health-promoting microbes termed probiotics. Both animal and plant probiotics cause direct antagonism of pathogens and induce systemic immunity in the host to pathogens and other stresses. They also alter host development, and improve host nutrition. The probiotic root-colonizing pseudomonads are generalists in terms of plant hosts, soil habitats and the array of stress responses that are ameliorated in the plant. This review illustrates how the probiotic pseudomonads, nurtured by the C and N sources released by the plant in root exudates, form protective biofilms on the root surface and produce the metabolites or enzymes to boost plant health. The findings reveal the multifunctional nature of many of the microbial metabolites in the plant-probiotic interplay. The beneficial effects of probiotics on plant function can contribute to sustainable yield and quality in agricultural production. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. © 2018 BSPP and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  13. Translating Developmental Origins: Improving the Health of Women and Their Children Using a Sustainable Approach to Behaviour Change

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mary Barker

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Theories of the developmental origins of health and disease imply that optimising the growth and development of babies is an essential route to improving the health of populations. A key factor in the growth of babies is the nutritional status of their mothers. Since women from more disadvantaged backgrounds have poorer quality diets and the worst pregnancy outcomes, they need to be a particular focus. The behavioural sciences have made a substantial contribution to the development of interventions to support dietary changes in disadvantaged women. Translation of such interventions into routine practice is an ideal that is rarely achieved, however. This paper illustrates how re-orientating health and social care services towards an empowerment approach to behaviour change might underpin a new developmental focus to improving long-term health, using learning from a community-based intervention to improve the diets and lifestyles of disadvantaged women. The Southampton Initiative for Health aimed to improve the diets and lifestyles of women of child-bearing age through training health and social care practitioners in skills to support behaviour change. Analysis illustrates the necessary steps in mounting such an intervention: building trust; matching agendas and changing culture. The Southampton Initiative for Health demonstrates that developing sustainable; workable interventions and effective community partnerships; requires commitment beginning long before intervention delivery but is key to the translation of developmental origins research into improvements in human health.

  14. Construct ability Improvement for Nuclear Power Plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lee, Dae Soo; Lee, Jong Rim; Kim, Jong Ku [Korea Electric Power Research Institute, Taejon (Korea, Republic of)

    1997-12-31

    The purpose of this study was to identify methods for improving the construct ability of nuclear power plants. This study reviewed several references of current construction practices of domestic and overseas nuclear plants in order to identify potential methods for improving construct ability. The identified methods for improving construct ability were then evaluated based on the applicability to domestic nuclear plant construction. The selected methods are expected to reduce the construction period, improve the quality of construction, cost, safety, and productivity. Selection of which methods should be implemented will require further evaluation of construction modifications, design changes, contract revisions. Among construction methods studied, platform construction methods can be applied through construction sequence modification without significant design changes, and Over the Top construction method of the NSSS, automatic welding of RCL pipes, CLP modularization, etc., are considered to be applied after design modification and adjustment of material lead time. (author). 49 refs., figs., tabs.

  15. Improving operator quality at Genkai Nuclear Power Plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kuwano, Takeshi.

    1989-01-01

    Improvement in operator quality, or improvement in an operator's skill and professional knowledge, is of prime importance because of its great influence on safe and steady plant operation. This paper describes the education and training of reactor operators at the Genkai pressurized water reactor nuclear power plant with respect to the following topics: organization of Genkai power plant; education and training program management; training at the Nuclear Training Center; training and education on-site including emergency procedures training, normal operating procedures training, informational study of emergency conditions in existing plants, and all-around training of operators; qualifying tests for supervisors; and operator motivation

  16. Role of RNA interference in plant improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jagtap, Umesh Balkrishna; Gurav, Ranjit Gajanan; Bapat, Vishwas Anant

    2011-06-01

    Research to alter crops for their better performance involving modern technology is underway in numerous plants, and achievements in transgenic plants are impacting crop improvements in unparalleled ways. Striking progress has been made using genetic engineering technology over the past two decades in manipulating genes from diverse and exotic sources, and inserting them into crop plants for inducing desirable characteristics. RNA interference (RNAi) has recently been identified as a natural mechanism for regulation of gene expression in all higher organisms from plants to humans and promises greater accuracy and precision to plant improvement. The expression of any gene can be down-regulated in a highly explicit manner exclusive of affecting the expression of any other gene by using RNAi technologies. Additional research in this field has been focused on a number of other areas including microRNAs, hairpin RNA, and promoter methylation. Manipulating new RNAi pathways, which generate small RNA molecules to amend gene expression in crops, can produce new quality traits and having better potentiality of protection against abiotic and biotic stresses. Nutritional improvement, change in morphology, or enhanced secondary metabolite synthesis are some of the other advantages of RNAi technology. In addition to its roles in regulating gene expression, RNAi is also used as a natural defense mechanism against molecular parasites such as jumping genes and viral genetic elements that affect genome stability. Even though much advancement has been made on the field of RNAi over the preceding few years, the full prospective of RNAi for crop improvement remains to be fully realized. The intricacy of RNAi pathway, the molecular machineries, and how it relates to plant development are still to be explained.

  17. Role of RNA interference in plant improvement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jagtap, Umesh Balkrishna; Gurav, Ranjit Gajanan; Bapat, Vishwas Anant

    2011-06-01

    Research to alter crops for their better performance involving modern technology is underway in numerous plants, and achievements in transgenic plants are impacting crop improvements in unparalleled ways. Striking progress has been made using genetic engineering technology over the past two decades in manipulating genes from diverse and exotic sources, and inserting them into crop plants for inducing desirable characteristics. RNA interference (RNAi) has recently been identified as a natural mechanism for regulation of gene expression in all higher organisms from plants to humans and promises greater accuracy and precision to plant improvement. The expression of any gene can be down-regulated in a highly explicit manner exclusive of affecting the expression of any other gene by using RNAi technologies. Additional research in this field has been focused on a number of other areas including microRNAs, hairpin RNA, and promoter methylation. Manipulating new RNAi pathways, which generate small RNA molecules to amend gene expression in crops, can produce new quality traits and having better potentiality of protection against abiotic and biotic stresses. Nutritional improvement, change in morphology, or enhanced secondary metabolite synthesis are some of the other advantages of RNAi technology. In addition to its roles in regulating gene expression, RNAi is also used as a natural defense mechanism against molecular parasites such as jumping genes and viral genetic elements that affect genome stability. Even though much advancement has been made on the field of RNAi over the preceding few years, the full prospective of RNAi for crop improvement remains to be fully realized. The intricacy of RNAi pathway, the molecular machineries, and how it relates to plant development are still to be explained.

  18. Apoplastic and intracellular plant sugars regulate developmental transitions in witches' broom disease of cacao.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barau, Joan; Grandis, Adriana; Carvalho, Vinicius Miessler de Andrade; Teixeira, Gleidson Silva; Zaparoli, Gustavo Henrique Alcalá; do Rio, Maria Carolina Scatolin; Rincones, Johana; Buckeridge, Marcos Silveira; Pereira, Gonçalo Amarante Guimarães

    2015-03-01

    Witches' broom disease (WBD) of cacao differs from other typical hemibiotrophic plant diseases by its unusually long biotrophic phase. Plant carbon sources have been proposed to regulate WBD developmental transitions; however, nothing is known about their availability at the plant-fungus interface, the apoplastic fluid of cacao. Data are provided supporting a role for the dynamics of soluble carbon in the apoplastic fluid in prompting the end of the biotrophic phase of infection. Carbon depletion and the consequent fungal sensing of starvation were identified as key signalling factors at the apoplast. MpNEP2, a fungal effector of host necrosis, was found to be up-regulated in an autophagic-like response to carbon starvation in vitro. In addition, the in vivo artificial manipulation of carbon availability in the apoplastic fluid considerably modulated both its expression and plant necrosis rate. Strikingly, infected cacao tissues accumulated intracellular hexoses, and showed stunted photosynthesis and the up-regulation of senescence markers immediately prior to the transition to the necrotrophic phase. These opposite findings of carbon depletion and accumulation in different host cell compartments are discussed within the frame of WBD development. A model is suggested to explain phase transition as a synergic outcome of fungal-related factors released upon sensing of extracellular carbon starvation, and an early senescence of infected tissues probably triggered by intracellular sugar accumulation. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Experimental Biology.

  19. Application of Modern Technologies for Nuclear Power Plant Productivity Improvements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Joseph, A. Naser

    2011-01-01

    The nuclear power industry in several countries is concerned about the ability to maintain current high plant performance levels due to aging and obsolescence, knowledge drain, fewer plant staff, new requirements and commitments, unnecessary workloads and stress levels, and human errors. Current plant operations are labor-intensive due to the vast number of operational and support activities required by the commonly used technology in most plants. These concerns increase as plants extend their operating life. In addition, there is the desire by many plants to further improve performance while reducing human errors and increasingly focus on reducing operations and maintenance costs. New productivity improvement capabilities with measurable economic benefits are needed so that a successful business case can be made for their use. Improved and new instrumentation and control, human-system interface, information and communications technologies used properly can address concerns about cost-effectively maintaining current performance levels and enable shifts to even higher performance levels. This can be accomplished through the use of new technology implementations to improve productivity, reduce costs of systemic inefficiencies and avoid unexpected costs. Many of the same type of productivity improvements for operating plants will be applicable for new plants. As new plants are being built, it is important to include these productivity improvements or at least provide the ability to implement them easily later

  20. Improving chemistry performance in CANDU plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Turner, C.; Guzonas, D.

    2010-01-01

    There is a strong interplay between coolant chemistry and materials selection in any nuclear power plant system. To achieve the design life of reactor components it is necessary to monitor and control relevant chemistry parameters, such as ionic conductivity, pH, concentrations of dissolved ions and redox species (e.g., hydrogen, hydrazine, oxygen) and the concentrations of suspended corrosion products. Chemistry specifications are set to achieve a balance between the sometimes conflicting requirements to minimize corrosion and radiological dose and to minimize operating and maintenance costs over the lifetime of the plant. For the past decade, Atomic Energy of Canada Limited (AECL) has taken a rigorous and disciplined approach to reviewing and updating all aspects of chemistry control in the CANDU® nuclear power plant (NPP). This approach has included proactively reviewing chemistry operating experience from existing CANDU® and other water-cooled NPPs worldwide to identify and address emerging issues, updating all of our chemistry control documentation to ensure that each chemistry parameter is linked to a specific requirement (e.g., reduce activity transport, monitor for condenser leak) and incorporating the latest results from our Research and Development (R and D) programs to ensure that all chemistry specifications are supported by a sound rationale. The results of this review and update have been incorporated into updated chemistry specifications and, in some cases, modified operating procedures for new and existing plants. In addition, recommendations have been made for design modifications to improve chemistry control in new build plants, especially during periods of shutdown and startup when chemistry control has traditionally been more challenging. Chemistry control in new-build CANDU® plants will rely increasingly on the use of on-line instrumentation interfaced directly to AECL's state-of-the-art chemistry monitoring, diagnostics and analysis

  1. Summary of EPRI projects for improving power plant maintenance and maintainability

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shugars, H.G.; Poole, D.N.; Pack, R.W.

    1979-01-01

    The Electric Power Research Institute is sponsoring projects to improve power plant maintenance and maintainability. Areas presently being emphasized are improvements in plant design for maintainability, improvements in performing nuclear plant refuelings, and development of on-line monitoring and diagnostic systems for various plant components. The seven projects are reviewed. They are: (1) human factors review of power plant maintainability; (2) refueling outage improvement; (3) on-line monitoring and diagnostics for power plant machinery; (4) acoustic emission and vibrati1on signature analysis of fossil fuel plant components; (5) acoustic monitoring of power plant valves; (6) on-line monitoring and diagnostics for generators; and (7) detection of water induction in steam turbines. Each project contractor and the project manager are listed for reference. 8 references

  2. l-Ergothioneine improves the developmental potential of in vitro sheep embryos without influencing OCTN1-mediated cross-membrane transcript expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mishra, A; Reddy, I J; Dhali, A; Javvaji, P K

    2018-04-02

    SummaryThe objective of the study was to investigate the effect of l-ergothioneine (l-erg) (5 mM or 10 mM) supplementation in maturation medium on the developmental potential and OCTN1-dependant l-erg-mediated (10 mM) change in mRNA abundance of apoptotic (Bcl2, Bax, Casp3 and PCNA) and antioxidant (GPx, SOD1, SOD2 and CAT) genes in sheep oocytes and developmental stages of embryos produced in vitro. Oocytes matured with l-erg (10 mM) reduced their embryo toxicity by decreasing intracellular ROS and increasing intracellular GSH in matured oocytes that in turn improved developmental potential, resulting in significantly (P l-erg without change in maturation rate. l-Erg (10 mM) treatment did not influence the mRNA abundance of the majority of apoptotic and antioxidant genes studied in the matured oocytes and developmental stages of embryo. A gene expression study found that the SLC22A4 gene that encodes OCTN1, an integral membrane protein and specific transporter of l-erg was not expressed in oocytes and developmental stages of embryos. Therefore it was concluded from the study that although there was improvement in the developmental potential of sheep embryos by l-erg supplementation in maturation medium, there was no change in the expression of the majority of the genes studied due to the absence of the SLC22A4 gene in oocytes and embryos that encode OCTN1, which is responsible for transportation of l-erg across the membrane to alter gene expression.

  3. Availability Improvement of German Nuclear Power Plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wilhelm, Oliver

    2008-01-01

    High availability is important for the safety and economical performance of Nuclear Power Plants (NPP). The strategy for availability improvement in a typical German PWR shall be discussed here. Key parameters for strategy development are plant design, availability of safety systems, component reliability, preventive maintenance and outage organization. Plant design, availability of safety systems and component reliability are to a greater extent given parameters that can hardly be influenced after the construction of the plant. But they set the frame for maintenance and outage organisation which have shown to have a large influence on the availability of the plant. (author)

  4. Improving parent-child interactions for families of children with developmental disabilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harrold, M; Lutzker, J R; Campbell, R V; Touchette, P E

    1992-06-01

    Child Management Training (CMT) involves compliance training with a focus on consistent use of antecedents and consequences. Planned Activities Training (PAT) focuses on teaching parents to plan for and engage in activities with their children. A multiple probe design counterbalancing PAT and CMT showed that PAT and CMT were about equally effective in improving mother-child interactions in four families with children with developmental disabilities. Responses to a social validation questionnaire indicated that parents were satisfied with the services received, and that PAT was the slightly preferred treatment. Prior research demonstrated that PAT enhanced the results of CMT. The practical advantages of PAT over CMT are discussed.

  5. Apoplastic and intracellular plant sugars regulate developmental transitions in witches’ broom disease of cacao

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barau, Joan; Grandis, Adriana; Carvalho, Vinicius Miessler de Andrade; Teixeira, Gleidson Silva; Zaparoli, Gustavo Henrique Alcalá; do Rio, Maria Carolina Scatolin; Rincones, Johana; Buckeridge, Marcos Silveira; Pereira, Gonçalo Amarante Guimarães

    2015-01-01

    Witches’ broom disease (WBD) of cacao differs from other typical hemibiotrophic plant diseases by its unusually long biotrophic phase. Plant carbon sources have been proposed to regulate WBD developmental transitions; however, nothing is known about their availability at the plant–fungus interface, the apoplastic fluid of cacao. Data are provided supporting a role for the dynamics of soluble carbon in the apoplastic fluid in prompting the end of the biotrophic phase of infection. Carbon depletion and the consequent fungal sensing of starvation were identified as key signalling factors at the apoplast. MpNEP2, a fungal effector of host necrosis, was found to be up-regulated in an autophagic-like response to carbon starvation in vitro. In addition, the in vivo artificial manipulation of carbon availability in the apoplastic fluid considerably modulated both its expression and plant necrosis rate. Strikingly, infected cacao tissues accumulated intracellular hexoses, and showed stunted photosynthesis and the up-regulation of senescence markers immediately prior to the transition to the necrotrophic phase. These opposite findings of carbon depletion and accumulation in different host cell compartments are discussed within the frame of WBD development. A model is suggested to explain phase transition as a synergic outcome of fungal-related factors released upon sensing of extracellular carbon starvation, and an early senescence of infected tissues probably triggered by intracellular sugar accumulation. PMID:25540440

  6. Trichostatin A treatment of cloned mouse embryos improves constitutive heterochromatin remodeling as well as developmental potential to term

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brochard Vincent

    2009-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Genome reprogramming in early mouse embryos is associated with nuclear reorganization and particular features such as the peculiar distribution of centromeric and pericentric heterochromatin during the first developmental stage. This zygote-specific heterochromatin organization could be observed both in maternal and paternal pronuclei after natural fertilization as well as in embryonic stem (ES cell nuclei after nuclear transfer suggesting that this particular type of nuclear organization was essential for embryonic reprogramming and subsequent development. Results Here, we show that remodeling into a zygotic-like organization also occurs after somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT, supporting the hypothesis that reorganization of constitutive heterochromatin occurs regardless of the source and differentiation state of the starting material. However, abnormal nuclear remodeling was frequently observed after SCNT, in association with low developmental efficiency. When transient treatment with the histone deacetylase inhibitor trichostatin A (TSA was tested, we observed improved nuclear remodeling in 1-cell SCNT embryos that correlated with improved rates of embryonic development at subsequent stages. Conclusion Together, the results suggest that proper organization of constitutive heterochromatin in early embryos is involved in the initial developmental steps and might have long term consequences, especially in cloning procedures.

  7. Improved technical specifications and related improvements to safety in commercial Nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hoffman, D.R.; Demitrack, T.; Schiele, R.; Jones, J.C.

    2004-01-01

    Many of the commercial nuclear power plants in the United States (US) have been converting a portion of the plant operating license known as the Technical Specifications (TS) in accordance with a document published by the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). The TS prescribe commercial nuclear power plant operating requirements. There are several types of nuclear power plants in the US, based on the technology of different vendors, and there is an NRC document that supports each of the five different vendor designs. The NRC documents are known as the Improved Standard Technical Specifications (ISTS) and are contained in a separate document (NUREG series) for each one of the designs. EXCEL Services Corporation (hereinafter EXCEL) has played a major role in the development of the ISTS and in the development, licensing, and implementation of the plant specific Improved Technical Specifications (ITS) (which is based on the ISTS) for the commercial nuclear power plants in the US that have elected to make this conversion. There are currently 103 operating commercial nuclear power plants in the US and 68 of them have successfully completed the conversion to the ITS and are now operating in accordance with their plant specific ITS. The ISTS is focused mainly on safety by ensuring the commercial nuclear reactors can safely shut down and mitigate the consequences of any postulated transient and accident. It accomplishes this function by including requirements directly associated with safety in a document structured systematically and taking into account some key human factors and technical initiatives. This paper discusses the ISTS including its format, content, and detail, the history of the ISTS, the ITS development, licensing, and implementation process, the safety improvements resulting from a plant conversion to ITS, and the importance of the ITS Project to the industry. (Author)

  8. Improved technical specifications and related improvements to safety in commercial Nuclear power plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hoffman, D.R.; Demitrack, T.; Schiele, R.; Jones, J.C. [EXCEL Services Corporation, 11921 Rockville Pike, Suite 100, Rockville, MD 20852 (United States)]. e-mail: donaldh@excelservices.com

    2004-07-01

    Many of the commercial nuclear power plants in the United States (US) have been converting a portion of the plant operating license known as the Technical Specifications (TS) in accordance with a document published by the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). The TS prescribe commercial nuclear power plant operating requirements. There are several types of nuclear power plants in the US, based on the technology of different vendors, and there is an NRC document that supports each of the five different vendor designs. The NRC documents are known as the Improved Standard Technical Specifications (ISTS) and are contained in a separate document (NUREG series) for each one of the designs. EXCEL Services Corporation (hereinafter EXCEL) has played a major role in the development of the ISTS and in the development, licensing, and implementation of the plant specific Improved Technical Specifications (ITS) (which is based on the ISTS) for the commercial nuclear power plants in the US that have elected to make this conversion. There are currently 103 operating commercial nuclear power plants in the US and 68 of them have successfully completed the conversion to the ITS and are now operating in accordance with their plant specific ITS. The ISTS is focused mainly on safety by ensuring the commercial nuclear reactors can safely shut down and mitigate the consequences of any postulated transient and accident. It accomplishes this function by including requirements directly associated with safety in a document structured systematically and taking into account some key human factors and technical initiatives. This paper discusses the ISTS including its format, content, and detail, the history of the ISTS, the ITS development, licensing, and implementation process, the safety improvements resulting from a plant conversion to ITS, and the importance of the ITS Project to the industry. (Author)

  9. Cost benefit justification of nuclear plant reliability improvement

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    El-Sayed, M.A.H.; Abdelmonem, N.M.

    1985-01-01

    The design of the secondary steam loop of the nuclear power plant has a significant effect on the reliability of the plant. Moreover, the necessity to cool a reactor safely has increased the reliability demanded from the system. The rapidly rising construction costs and fuel prices in recent years have stimulated a great deal in optimizing the productivity of a nuclear power plant through reliability improvement of the secondary steamloop and the reactor cooling system. A method for evaluating the reliability of steam loop and cooling system of a nuclear power plant is presented. The method utilizes the cut-set technique. The developed method can be easily used to show to what extent the overall reliability of the nuclear plant is affected by the possible failures in the steam and cooling subsystem. A model for calculating the increase in the nuclear plant productivity resulting from a proposed improvement in the two subsystems reliability is discussed. The model takes into account the capital cost of spare parts for several components, replacement energy, operating and maintenance costs

  10. Developmental Work

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Møller, Niels; Hvid, Helge; Kristensen, Tage Søndergaard

    2003-01-01

    Human Deveoplment and Working Life - Work for Welfare explores whether the development of human resources at company level can improve individuals' quality of life, companies' possibilities of development, and welfare and democracy in society. Chapter two discuss the concept "developmental work...

  11. Anterior capsulotomy improves persistent developmental stuttering with a psychiatric disorder: a case report and literature review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhang SZ

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Shizhen Zhang,* Peng Li,* Zhujun Zhang, Wei WangDepartment of Neurosurgery, West China Hospital, Sichuan University, Chengdu, Sichuan Province, People's Republic of China *These authors contributed equally to this workAbstract: Stuttering is characterized by disrupted fluency of verbal expression, and occurs mostly in children. Persistent developmental stuttering (PDS may occur in adults. Reports of the surgical management of PDS are limited. Here we present the case of a 28-year-old man who had had PDS since the age of 7 years, was diagnosed with depression and anxiety disorder at the age of 24 years, and had physical concomitants. He underwent a bilateral anterior capsulotomy 4 years after the diagnosis. Over one year of follow-up, his physical concomitants resolved, and significant improvements in his psychiatric disorders and PDS were observed. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of simultaneous improvement in a patient's PDS and psychiatric disorder after a bilateral anterior capsulotomy.Keywords: persistent developmental stuttering, psychiatric disorders, anterior capsulotomy

  12. Evaluating and improving nuclear power plant operating performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1999-07-01

    This report aims to provide the basis for improvements in the understanding of nuclear power plants operation and ideas for improving future productivity. The purpose of the project was to identify good practices of operating performance at a few of the world's most productive plants. This report was prepared through a series of consultants meetings, a specialists meeting and an Advisory Group meeting with participation of experts from 23 Member States. The report is based on self-assessment of half a dozen plants that have been chosen as representatives of different reactor types in as many different countries, and the views and assessment of the participants on good practices influencing plant performance. Three main areas that influence nuclear power plant availability and reliability were identified in the discussions: (1) management practices, (2) personnel characteristics, and (3) working practices. These areas cover causes influencing plant performance under plant management control. In each area the report describes factors or good practices that positively influence plant availability. The case studies, presented in annexes, contain the plant self-assessment of areas that influence their availability and reliability. Six plants are represented in the case studies: (1) Dukovany (WWER, 1760 MW) in the Czech Republic; (2) Blayais (PWR, 3640 MW) in France; (3) Paks (WWER, 1840 MW) in Hungary; (4) Wolsong 1 (PHWR, 600 MW) in the Republic of Korea; (5) Trillo 1 (PWR, 1066 MW) in Spain; and (6) Limerick (BWR, 2220 MW) in the United States of America

  13. Does attentional training improve numerical processing in developmental dyscalculia?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ashkenazi, Sarit; Henik, Avishai

    2012-01-01

    Recently, a deficit in attention was found in those with pure developmental dyscalculia (DD). Accordingly, the present study aimed to examine the influence of attentional training on attention abilities, basic numerical abilities, and arithmetic in participants who were diagnosed as having DD. Nine university students diagnosed as having DD (IQ and reading abilities in the normal range and no indication of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder) and nine matched controls participated in attentional training (i.e., video game training). First, training modulated the orienting system; after training, the size of the validity effect (i.e., effect of valid vs. invalid) decreased. This effect was comparable in the two groups. Training modulated abnormalities in the attention systems of those with DD, that is, it reduced their enlarged congruity effect (i.e., faster responding when flanking arrows pointed to the same location as a center arrow). Second, in relation to the enumeration task, training reduced the reaction time of the DD group in the subitizing range but did not change their smaller-than-normal subitizing range. Finally, training improved performance in addition problems in both the DD and control groups. These results imply that attentional training does improve most of the attentional deficits of those with DD. In contrast, training did not improve the abnormalities of the DD group in arithmetic or basic numerical processing. Thus, in contrast to the domain-general hypothesis, the deficits in attention among those with DD and the deficits in numerical processing appear to originate from different sources.

  14. Learning To Breathe: Developmental Phase Transitions in Oxygen Status.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Considine, Michael J; Diaz-Vivancos, Pedro; Kerchev, Pavel; Signorelli, Santiago; Agudelo-Romero, Patricia; Gibbs, Daniel J; Foyer, Christine H

    2017-02-01

    Plants are developmentally disposed to significant changes in oxygen availability, but our understanding of the importance of hypoxia is almost entirely limited to stress biology. Differential patterns of the abundance of oxygen, nitric oxide ( • NO), and reactive oxygen species (ROS), as well as of redox potential, occur in organs and meristems, and examples are emerging in the literature of mechanistic relationships of these to development. We describe here the convergence of these cues in meristematic and reproductive tissues, and discuss the evidence for regulated hypoxic niches within which oxygen-, ROS-, • NO-, and redox-dependent signalling curate developmental transitions in plants. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. What about improving the productivity of electric power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lawroski, H.; Knecht, P.D.; Prideaux, D.L.; Zahner, R.R.

    1976-01-01

    The FEA in April of 1974 established an Interagency Task Group on Power Plant Reliability, which was charged with the broad objective of improving the productivity of existing and planned large fossil-fueled and nuclear power plants. It took approximately 11 months for the task force to publish a report, ''Report on Improving the Productivity of Electrical Power Plants'' (FEA-263-G), a detailed analysis and comparison of successful and below-average-performance power plants. The Nuclear Service Corp. portion of this study examined four large central-station power plants: two fossil (coal) and two nuclear plants. Only plants with electrical generation capacities greater than 400 MWe were considered. The study included the following: staff technical skill, engineering support, QA program, plant/corporate coordination, operation philosophy, maintenance programs, federal/state regulations, network control, and equipment problems. Personnel were interviewed, and checklists providing input from some 21 or more plant and corporate personnel of each utility were utilized. Reports and other documentation were also reviewed. It was recognized early that productivity is closely allied to technical skills and positive motivation. For this reason, considerable attention was given to people in this study

  16. IMPROVING TACONITE PROCESSING PLANT EFFICIENCY BY COMPUTER SIMULATION, Final Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    William M. Bond; Salih Ersayin

    2007-03-30

    This project involved industrial scale testing of a mineral processing simulator to improve the efficiency of a taconite processing plant, namely the Minorca mine. The Concentrator Modeling Center at the Coleraine Minerals Research Laboratory, University of Minnesota Duluth, enhanced the capabilities of available software, Usim Pac, by developing mathematical models needed for accurate simulation of taconite plants. This project provided funding for this technology to prove itself in the industrial environment. As the first step, data representing existing plant conditions were collected by sampling and sample analysis. Data were then balanced and provided a basis for assessing the efficiency of individual devices and the plant, and also for performing simulations aimed at improving plant efficiency. Performance evaluation served as a guide in developing alternative process strategies for more efficient production. A large number of computer simulations were then performed to quantify the benefits and effects of implementing these alternative schemes. Modification of makeup ball size was selected as the most feasible option for the target performance improvement. This was combined with replacement of existing hydrocyclones with more efficient ones. After plant implementation of these modifications, plant sampling surveys were carried out to validate findings of the simulation-based study. Plant data showed very good agreement with the simulated data, confirming results of simulation. After the implementation of modifications in the plant, several upstream bottlenecks became visible. Despite these bottlenecks limiting full capacity, concentrator energy improvement of 7% was obtained. Further improvements in energy efficiency are expected in the near future. The success of this project demonstrated the feasibility of a simulation-based approach. Currently, the Center provides simulation-based service to all the iron ore mining companies operating in northern

  17. Evaluating and improving nuclear power plant operating performance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1999-07-01

    This report aims to provide the basis for improvements in the understanding of nuclear power plants operation and ideas for improving future productivity. The purpose of the project was to identify good practices of operating performance at a few of the world`s most productive plants. This report was prepared through a series of consultants meetings, a specialists meeting and an Advisory Group meeting with participation of experts from 23 Member States. The report is based on self-assessment of half a dozen plants that have been chosen as representatives of different reactor types in as many different countries, and the views and assessment of the participants on good practices influencing plant performance. Three main areas that influence nuclear power plant availability and reliability were identified in the discussions: (1) management practices, (2) personnel characteristics, and (3) working practices. These areas cover causes influencing plant performance under plant management control. In each area the report describes factors or good practices that positively influence plant availability. The case studies, presented in annexes, contain the plant self-assessment of areas that influence their availability and reliability. Six plants are represented in the case studies: (1) Dukovany (WWER, 1760 MW) in the Czech Republic; (2) Blayais (PWR, 3640 MW) in France; (3) Paks (WWER, 1840 MW) in Hungary; (4) Wolsong 1 (PHWR, 600 MW) in the Republic of Korea; (5) Trillo 1 (PWR, 1066 MW) in Spain; and (6) Limerick (BWR, 2220 MW) in the United States of America Figs, tabs

  18. Plant improvements through the use of benchmarking analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Messmer, J.R.

    1993-01-01

    As utilities approach the turn of the century, customer and shareholder satisfaction is threatened by rising costs. Environmental compliance expenditures, coupled with low load growth and aging plant assets are forcing utilities to operate existing resources in a more efficient and productive manner. PSI Energy set out in the spring of 1992 on a benchmarking mission to compare four major coal fired plants against others of similar size and makeup, with the goal of finding the best operations in the country. Following extensive analysis of the 'Best in Class' operation, detailed goals and objectives were established for each plant in seven critical areas. Three critical processes requiring rework were identified and required an integrated effort from all plants. The Plant Improvement process has already resulted in higher operation productivity, increased emphasis on planning, and lower costs due to effective material management. While every company seeks improvement, goals are often set in an ambiguous manner. Benchmarking aids in setting realistic goals based on others' actual accomplishments. This paper describes how the utility's short term goals will move them toward being a lower cost producer

  19. Computer-based multisensory learning in children with developmental dyslexia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kast, Monika; Meyer, Martin; Vögeli, Christian; Gross, Markus; Jäncke, Lutz

    2007-01-01

    Several attempts have been made to remediate developmental dyslexia using various training environments. Based on the well-known retrieval structure model, the memory strength of phonemes and graphemes should be strengthened by visual and auditory associations between graphemes and phonemes. Using specifically designed training software, we examined whether establishing a multitude of visuo-auditory associations might help to mitigate writing errors in children with developmental dyslexia. Forty-three children with developmental dyslexia and 37 carefully matched normal reading children performed a computer-based writing training (15-20 minutes 4 days a week) for three months with the aim to recode a sequential textual input string into a multi-sensory representation comprising visual and auditory codes (including musical tones). The study included four matched groups: a group of children with developmental dyslexia (n=20) and a control group (n=18) practiced with the training software in the first period (3 months, 15-20 minutes 4 days a week), while a second group of children with developmental dyslexia (n=23) (waiting group) and a second control group (n=19) received no training during the first period. In the second period the children with developmental dyslexia and controls who did not receive training during the first period now took part in the training. Children with developmental dyslexia who did not perform computer-based training during the first period hardly improved their writing skills (post-pre improvement of 0-9%), the dyslexic children receiving training strongly improved their writing skills (post-pre improvement of 19-35%). The group who did the training during the second period also revealed improvement of writing skills (post-pre improvement of 27-35%). Interestingly, we noticed a strong transfer from trained to non-trained words in that the children who underwent the training were also better able to write words correctly that were not part

  20. Alternative off-site power supply improves nuclear power plant safety

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gjorgiev, Blaže; Volkanovski, Andrija; Kančev, Duško; Čepin, Marko

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • Additional power supply for mitigation of the station blackout event in NPP is used. • A hydro power plant is considered as an off-site alternative power supply. • An upgrade of the probabilistic safety assessment from its traditional use is made. • The obtained results show improvement of nuclear power plant safety. - Abstract: A reliable power system is important for safe operation of the nuclear power plants. The station blackout event is of great importance for nuclear power plant safety. This event is caused by the loss of all alternating current power supply to the safety and non-safety buses of the nuclear power plant. In this study an independent electrical connection between a pumped-storage hydro power plant and a nuclear power plant is assumed as a standpoint for safety and reliability analysis. The pumped-storage hydro power plant is considered as an alternative power supply. The connection with conventional accumulation type of hydro power plant is analysed in addition. The objective of this paper is to investigate the improvement of nuclear power plant safety resulting from the consideration of the alternative power supplies. The safety of the nuclear power plant is analysed through the core damage frequency, a risk measure assess by the probabilistic safety assessment. The presented method upgrades the probabilistic safety assessment from its common traditional use in sense that it considers non-plant sited systems. The obtained results show significant decrease of the core damage frequency, indicating improvement of nuclear safety if hydro power plant is introduced as an alternative off-site power source

  1. Plant breeding: Induced mutation technology for crop improvement

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Novak, F.J.; Brunner, H.

    1992-01-01

    Plant breeding requires genetic variation of useful traits for crop improvement, but the desired variation is often lacking. Mutagenic agents, such as radiation and certain chemicals, can be used to induce mutations and generate genetic variations from which desirable mutants may be selected. After a brief summary of the methods currently employed in plant breeding, especially those inducing genetic engineering, this article describes the activities of the Plant Breeding Unit of the IAEA Laboratories at Seibersdorf, summarizing the research and development areas currently being pursued. The banana plant is chosen to exemplify the Laboratories' research

  2. Early Growth of Improved Acacia mangium at Different Planting Densities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arif Nirsatmanto

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Integrating tree improvement into silvicultural practices is essential in forest plantation. Concerning this fact, Acacia mangium spacing trial planted using genetically improved seed was established in West Java. This study was aimed to evaluate the impact of ages and planting density on early growth of improved seed A. mangium in the spacing trial. Improved seed from 2 seed orchards (SSO-5 and SSO-20 and a control of unimproved seed from seed stand (SS-7 were tested together in spacing 3 × 3 m and 2 × 2 m. Height, diameter, stem volume, and stand volume were observed at 3 ages. The results showed that improved seed consistently outperformed to unimproved seed. Ages were highly significant for all traits, but the significant difference varied among traits and seed sources for planting density and the interactions. High density performed better growth than low density at first year, and they were varied in subsequent ages depending on traits and seed sources. Improved seed from less intensity selection orchard was less tolerance to high density than that from high intensity selection orchard, but the tolerance was reversed in low density. Improved seed A. mangium from different level of genetic selection has responded differently in behavior to the changes of planting density.

  3. Basic study of the plant maintenance model considering plant improvement/modification

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tsumaya, Akira; Inoue, Kazuya; Mochizuki, Masahito; Wakamatsu, Hidefumi; Arai, Eiji

    2007-01-01

    This paper proposes a maintenance activity model that considers not only routine maintenance activity but also functional maintenance including improvement/modification. Required maintenance types are categorized, and limitation of Activity Domain Integration Diagram (ADID) proposed by ISO18435 are discussed based on framework for life cycle maintenance management of manufacturing assets. Then, we proposed extension ADID model for plant maintenance activity model considering functional improvement/modification. (author)

  4. Improved plant availability by advanced condition based inspections

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hulshof, Harry J.M.; Noteboom, Jan W.; Welberg, Paul G.M.; Bruijn, Leo E.

    2004-01-01

    An industrial plant has to operate safely, reliably and efficiently at the lowest possible cost. Plant availability plays an important role regarding economic life optimisation. Industrial installations that are under pressure and are operating at high temperatures have a limited life due to creep and fatigue. It is, therefore, of critical importance to know the location of any possible weak spots in the installation. To avoid safety risks, unplanned plant shutdown and, as a consequence, high costs for unavailability, cycling and repair, periodic inspections and strain measurements are recommended. A Speckle Image Correlation Analysis (SPICA) system enables on-stream measurement of deformation due to creep in critical areas like the heat-affected zone in welds. Plant management and operators use the strain measurements to take action when necessary and, consequently, prevent failures. In those plants that have been provided with SPICA-technology for some years plant availability has improved significantly as a result. Another important development for yielding improved availability concerns steam drums. During some 20 years, KEMA has been performing automated ultrasonic steam drum inspections from outside. The Dutch authorities accepted this methodology in this period as an alternative (rather than an addition) after several pilot projects. An advantage of this inspection methodology is the possibility to record of the inspection results and possibility of thus trending these data. The resulting reduction of through time appeared a major benefit for plant owners. Since the authorities adopted the RBI approach during the last 10 years, another advantage of the inspection methodology became apparent: complete scanning and recording of the inspection data of circumferential and longitudinal (butt and fillet) welds, inspection of nozzle welds and inner radius as well as corrosion mapping has been covering all higher risk areas in these drums. This enhanced inspection

  5. Improved plant availability by advanced condition based inspections

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hulshof, Harry J.M.; Noteboom, Jan W; Welberg, Paul G.M.; Bruijn, Leo E

    2004-06-01

    An industrial plant has to operate safely, reliably and efficiently at the lowest possible cost. Plant availability plays an important role regarding economic life optimisation. Industrial installations that are under pressure and are operating at high temperatures have a limited life due to creep and fatigue. It is, therefore, of critical importance to know the location of any possible weak spots in the installation. To avoid safety risks, unplanned plant shutdown and, as a consequence, high costs for unavailability, cycling and repair, periodic inspections and strain measurements are recommended. A Speckle Image Correlation Analysis (SPICA) system enables on-stream measurement of deformation due to creep in critical areas like the heat-affected zone in welds. Plant management and operators use the strain measurements to take action when necessary and, consequently, prevent failures. In those plants that have been provided with SPICA-technology for some years plant availability has improved significantly as a result. Another important development for yielding improved availability concerns steam drums. During some 20 years, KEMA has been performing automated ultrasonic steam drum inspections from outside. The Dutch authorities accepted this methodology in this period as an alternative (rather than an addition) after several pilot projects. An advantage of this inspection methodology is the possibility to record of the inspection results and possibility of thus trending these data. The resulting reduction of through time appeared a major benefit for plant owners. Since the authorities adopted the RBI approach during the last 10 years, another advantage of the inspection methodology became apparent: complete scanning and recording of the inspection data of circumferential and longitudinal (butt and fillet) welds, inspection of nozzle welds and inner radius as well as corrosion mapping has been covering all higher risk areas in these drums. This enhanced inspection

  6. Vitamin K2 improves developmental competency and cryo-tolerance of in vitro derived ovine blastocyst.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sefid, Fatemeh; Ostadhosseini, S; Hosseini, S M; Ghazvini Zadegan, F; Pezhman, M; Nasr Esfahani, Mohammad Hossein

    2017-08-01

    Vitamin K2 (VK2), acts as an electron carrier in mitochondria and thereby effects reactive oxygen species (ROS) and ATP production. This study evaluates role of VK2 on in vitro developmental competency and cryo-survival of pre-implantation ovine embryos. Initially the optimal and beneficial concentration of VK2 on compaction and blastocyst formation rates was defined (0.1 μM). Subsequently, it was shown that 0.1 μM VK2, at blastocyst stage, reduces H2O2 production, increase the expression of mitochondrial related gene and improved embryos quality. We further assessed presence VK2 supplementation before and/or after vitrification of in vitro derived blastocysts. Our results reveal that presence of VK2 before and after vitrification improves rates of blastocysts re-expansion (88.19± 3.37% vs 73.68± 1.86%, P < 0.05) and hatching (49.55± 4.37% vs 32.7± 3.32%) compared to control group. These observation were consistent with reduction in H2O2 production and improved in expression of mitochondrial related genes. However, VK2 before or after vitrification, not only had no positive effect on these two parameters, but also significantly reduced these parameters. Therefore, in concordance with pervious report in bovine, we show that VK2 supplementation post genomic activation (Day 3-7) improved developmental competency of ovine in vitro derived embryos. We also showed that presence of VK2 after vitrification improves the cryo-survival of ovine embryos. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. PXD101 significantly improves nuclear reprogramming and the in vitro developmental competence of porcine SCNT embryos

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jin, Jun-Xue; Kang, Jin-Dan; Li, Suo; Jin, Long; Zhu, Hai-Ying; Guo, Qing; Gao, Qing-Shan; Yan, Chang-Guo; Yin, Xi-Jun, E-mail: yinxj33@msn.com

    2015-01-02

    Highlights: • First explored that the effects of PXD101 on the development of SCNT embryos in vitro. • 0.5 μM PXD101 treated for 24 h improved the development of porcine SCNT embryos. • Level of AcH3K9 was significantly higher than control group at early stages. - Abstract: In this study, we investigated the effects of the histone deacetylase inhibitor PXD101 (belinostat) on the preimplantation development of porcine somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) embryos and their expression of the epigenetic markers histone H3 acetylated at lysine 9 (AcH3K9). We compared the in vitro developmental competence of SCNT embryos treated with various concentrations of PXD101 for 24 h. Treatment with 0.5 μM PXD101 significantly increased the proportion of SCNT embryos that reached the blastocyst stage, in comparison to the control group (23.3% vs. 11.5%, P < 0.05). We tested the in vitro developmental competence of SCNT embryos treated with 0.5 μM PXD101 for various amounts of times following activation. Treatment for 24 h significantly improved the development of porcine SCNT embryos, with a significantly higher proportion of embryos reaching the blastocyst stage in comparison to the control group (25.7% vs. 10.6%, P < 0.05). PXD101-treated SCNT embryos were transferred into two surrogate sows, one of whom became pregnant and four fetuses developed. PXD101 treatment significantly increased the fluorescence intensity of immunostaining for AcH3K9 in embryos at the pseudo-pronuclear and 2-cell stages. At these stages, the fluorescence intensities of immunostaining for AcH3K9 were significantly higher in PXD101-treated embryos than in control untreated embryos. In conclusion, this study demonstrates that PXD101 can significantly improve the in vitro and in vivo developmental competence of porcine SCNT embryos and can enhance their nuclear reprogramming.

  8. A model for continuous improvement at a South African minerals benefication plant

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ras, Eugene Ras

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available South Africa has a variety of mineral resources, and several minerals beneficiation plants are currently in operation. These plants must be operated effectively to ensure that the end-users of its products remain internationally competitive. To achieve this objective, plants need a sustainable continuous improvement programme. Several frameworks for continuous improvement are used, with variable success rates, in beneficiation plants around the world. However, none of these models specifically addresses continuous improvement from a minerals-processing point of view. The objective of this research study was to determine which factors are important for a continuous improvement model at a minerals beneficiation plant, and to propose a new model using lean manufacturing, six sigma, and the theory of constraints. A survey indicated that managers in the industry prefer a model that combines various continuous improvement models.

  9. Developmental plasticity and the evolution of parental effects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uller, Tobias

    2008-08-01

    One of the outstanding challenges for evolutionary biologists is to understand how developmental plasticity can influence the evolutionary process. Developmental plasticity frequently involves parental effects, which might enable adaptive and context-dependent transgenerational transmission of phenotypic strategies. However, parent-offspring conflict will frequently result in parental effects that are suboptimal for parents, offspring or both. The fitness consequences of parental effects at evolutionary equilibrium will depend on how conflicts can be resolved by modifications of developmental processes, suggesting that proximate studies of development can inform ultimate questions. Furthermore, recent studies of plants and animals show how studies of parental effects in an ecological context provide important insights into the origin and evolution of adaptation under variable environmental conditions.

  10. Plants for Sustainable Improvement of Indoor Air Quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brilli, Federico; Fares, Silvano; Ghirardo, Andrea; de Visser, Pieter; Calatayud, Vicent; Muñoz, Amalia; Annesi-Maesano, Isabella; Sebastiani, Federico; Alivernini, Alessandro; Varriale, Vincenzo; Menghini, Flavio

    2018-04-10

    Indoor pollution poses a serious threat to human health. Plants represent a sustainable but underexploited solution to enhance indoor air quality. However, the current selection of plants suitable for indoors fails to consider the physiological processes and mechanisms involved in phytoremediation. Therefore, the capacity of plants to remove indoor air pollutants through stomatal uptake (absorption) and non-stomatal deposition (adsorption) remains largely unknown. Moreover, the effects of the indoor plant-associated microbiome still need to be fully analyzed. Here, we discuss how a combination of the enhanced phytoremediation capacity of plants together with cutting-edge air-cleaning and smart sensor technologies can improve indoor life while reducing energy consumption. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. High hydrostatic pressure: a new way to improve in vitro developmental competence of porcine matured oocytes after vitrification

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Du, Y; Pribenszky, C S; Molnár, M

    2008-01-01

    The purpose of the present study was to improve cryotolerance using high hydrostatic pressure (HHP) pretreatment of porcine in vitro matured (IVM) oocytes, to facilitate their further developmental competence after parthenogenetic activation. A total of 1668 porcine IVM oocytes were used in our...... present study. The pressure tolerance and optimal duration of recovery after HHP treatment were determined. Oocytes were treated with either 20 or 40 MPa (200 and 400 times greater than atmospheric pressure) for 60 min, with an interval of 10, 70, and 130 min between pressure treatment and subsequent...... vitrification under each pressure parameter. Oocytes from all vitrification groups had much lower developmental competence than fresh oocytes (Ppressure, with either 70...

  12. PGPR Potentially Improve Growth of Tomato Plants in Salt-Stressed Environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariam Zameer

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Plant growth promoting rhizobacteria are colonized bacterial species that has the capability to improve plant growth by certain direct and indirect means. Environmental factors including both biotic and abiotic stresses are among the major constraints to crop production. In the current study, the effectiveness of microbial inoculation (Bacillus megaterium for enhancing growth of tomato plants under salt stress conditions has been investigated. Significant improvement in shoot length, root length, leaf surface area, number of leaves, total weight of the shoot and root was observed in tomato plants inoculated with zm7 strain post 15 and 30 days of its application. Zm3, Zm4 and Zm6 strains improved the morphological parameters as compared to the control. Chlorophyll content a, chlorophyll content b, anthocyanin and carotenoid content was increased in tomato plants subjected to Zm7, Zm6 and Zm4 strains. Stress responsive genes; metallothionein and glutothion gene were found highly expressed in Zm7 treated tomato plants as compared to control, untreated plants. Significant correlation of anthocyanin was reported for carotenoids, chlorophyll-b, shoot weight and total weight of seedling while carotenoids were significantly correlated with leaf surface area, root length, chlorophyll-b and anthocyanin. Overall, Zm7 strain proved best for improvement in salt stressed plant’s morphological parameters and biochemical parameters as compared to control, untreated plants.

  13. Evolution and developmental genetics of floral display-A review of progress

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Qing Ma; Wenheng Zhang; Qiu-Yun (Jenny) Xiang

    2017-01-01

    Angiosperms evolved a great diversity of ways to display their flowers for reproductive success by variation in floral color,size,shape,scent,arrangements,and flowering time.The various innovations in floral forms and the aggregation of flowers into different kinds of inflorescences can drive new ecological adaptations,speciation,and angiosperm diversification.Evolutionary developmental biology (evo-devo) seeks to uncover the developmental and genetic basis underlying morphological diversification.Advances in the developmental genetics of floral display have provided a foundation for insights into the genetic basis of floral and inflorescence evolution.A number of regulatory genes controlling floral and inflorescence development have been identified in model plants (e.g.,Arabidopsis thaliana,Antirrhinum majus) using forward genetics and conserved functions of many of these genes across diverse non-model species have been revealed by reverse genetics.Gene-regulatory networks that mediated the developmental progresses of floral and inflorescence development have also been established in some plant species.Meanwhile,phylogeny-based comparative analysis of morphological and genetic character has enabled the identification of key evolutionary events that lead to morphological complexity and diversification.Here we review the recent progress on evo-devo studies of floral display including floral symmetry,petal fusion,floral color,floral scent,and inflorescences.We also review the molecular genetic approaches applied to plant evo-devo studies and highlight the future directions of evo-devo.

  14. Taekwondo Training Improves Sensory Organization and Balance Control in Children with Developmental Coordination Disorder: A Randomized Controlled Trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fong, Shirley S. M.; Tsang, William W. N.; Ng, Gabriel Y. F.

    2012-01-01

    Children with developmental coordination disorder (DCD) have poorer postural control and are more susceptible to falls and injuries than their healthy counterparts. Sports training may improve sensory organization and balance ability in this population. This study aimed to evaluate the effects of three months of Taekwondo (TKD) training on the…

  15. Milrinone treatment of bovine oocytes during in vitro maturation benefits production of nuclear transfer embryos by improving enucleation rate and developmental competence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naruse, Kenji; Iga, Kosuke; Shimizu, Manabu; Takenouchi, Naoki; Akagi, Satoshi; Somfai, Tamas; Hirao, Yuji

    2012-01-01

    In the production of cattle nuclear transfer embryos, the production efficiency is affected by the oocyte developmental competence and successful enucleation rate. This study investigated the effect of treating oocytes with milrinone, a phosphodiesterase inhibitor, on these two characteristics. When cumulus-oocyte complexes (COCs) were cultured for 19 h with 0, 50 or 100 μM of milrinone, the enucleation rate was significantly improved by 100 μM milrinone. However, milrinone treatment during in vitro maturation (IVM) also delayed meiotic progression by at least 2 h, which would affect the examination of enucleation rate and developmental competence of oocytes. Thus, in the second experiment, meiotic resumption was temporarily inhibited with butyrolactone I (BL-I; 100 μM, 18 h) to decrease the delayed maturation caused by milrinone; this enabled a more accurate comparison of the effects of milrinone after oocyte maturation. In nuclear transfer embryo production, oocytes treated with milrinone (100 μM, 20 h) showed a significantly higher rate of enucleation compared with that of control oocytes. This improved enucleation rate was associated with a closer location of the metaphase plate to the first polar body in the treated oocytes compared with that in control oocytes. Furthermore, milrinone improved the frequency of development to the blastocyst stage in the resulting embryos. In conclusion, milrinone supplementation during IVM improved enucleation rates by rendering the metaphase plate in close proximity to the first polar body, and this treatment also improved oocyte developmental competence. These benefits additively improved the yield of cloned embryos that developed to the blastocyst stage.

  16. The experiences to improve plant performance and reliability of Ko-Ri nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kang, Ho Weon

    1998-01-01

    This paper provides a discussion of the lessons learned from operational experience and the future plans to improve performance of the Ko-Ri plant. To operate nuclear power plants safely with good performance is the only way to mitigate the negative image of nuclear power generation to the public and to enhance the economical benefit compared to other electrical generation method. Therefore, in a continuous effort to overcome a negative challenge from outside, we have driven an aggressive 'OCTF' campaign as part of safety. As a result of our efforts, the following remarkable achievements have been accomplished. (1) 3 times of OCTF during recent three years (2) Selected twice as a top notch power plant on the list of NEI magazine in terms of plant capacity factor (3) No scram recorded in 1997 for all 4 units at Ko-Ri site. Ko-Ri is now undergoing the large scale plant betterment projects for retaking-off our operating performance to the level of new challenge target. Such improvement of critical components in the reactor coolant system and turbine system greatly contribute to increase the safety and reliability of the plant and to shortening of the planned outage period as well as to reduction of radiation exposure and radwaste. (Cho, G. S.). 5 tabs., 10 figs

  17. Improvement on main control room for Japanese PWR plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Matsumiya, Masayuki

    1996-01-01

    The main control room which is the information center of nuclear power plant has been continuously improved utilizing the state of the art ergonomics, a high performance computer, computer graphic technologies, etc. For the latest Japanese Pressurized Water Reactor (PWR) plant, the CRT monitoring system is applied as the major information source for facilitating operators' plant monitoring tasks. For an operating plant, enhancement of monitoring and logging functions has been made adopting a high performance computer

  18. White matter microstructure and developmental improvement of hyperactive/impulsive symptoms in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Francx, Winke; Zwiers, Marcel P; Mennes, Maarten; Oosterlaan, Jaap; Heslenfeld, Dirk; Hoekstra, Pieter J; Hartman, Catharina A; Franke, Barbara; Faraone, Stephen V; O'Dwyer, Laurence; Buitelaar, Jan K

    2015-12-01

    A developmental improvement of symptoms in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is frequently reported, but the underlying neurobiological substrate has not been identified. The aim of this study was to determine whether white matter microstructure is related to developmental improvement of ADHD symptoms. A cross-sectional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) analysis was embedded in a prospective follow-up of an adolescent cohort of ADHD and control subjects (NeuroIMAGE). Mean age at baseline was 11.9 years, mean interval of follow-up was 5.9 years. About 75.3% of the original cohort was retained successfully. Data of 101 participants with ADHD combined type at baseline and 40 healthy controls were analysed. ADHD symptoms were measured with semistructured, investigator-based interviews and Conners' questionnaires, on the basis of DSM-IV criteria. Fractional anisotropy (FA) and mean diffusivity (MD) indices of white matter microstructure were measured using whole brain diffusion tensor imaging at follow-up only. In a dimensional analysis FA and MD were related to change in ADHD symptoms. To link this analysis to DSM-IV diagnoses, a post hoc categorical group analysis was conducted comparing participants with persistent (n = 59) versus remittent (n = 42) ADHD and controls. Over time, participants with ADHD showed improvement mainly in hyperactive/impulsive symptoms. This improvement was associated with lower FA and higher MD values in the left corticospinal tract at follow-up. Findings of the dimensional and the categorical analysis strongly converged. Changes in inattentive symptoms over time were minimal and not related to white matter microstructure. The corticospinal tract is important in the control of voluntary movements, suggesting the importance of the motor system in the persistence of hyperactive/impulsive symptoms. © 2015 Association for Child and Adolescent Mental Health.

  19. Opportunities for practical improvements in the management of plant transients

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zebroski, E.L.

    1984-01-01

    This chapter attempts to provide some perspectives on the steps involved in analyzing, evaluating, and implementing remedies for transients and for potentially severe events. The importance of improved response and control of plant transients is stressed. The main steps involved in the attainment of improved control of plant transients are listed. Topics considered include the acquisition of plant data, sensitivity and risk analysis, the options for improvements, the managerial role, and some priorities for data, analysis, and evaluation. The ten most frequent types of transients for pressurized water reactors (PWRs) and boiling water reactors (BWRs) are listed according to frequency of occurrence. It is concluded that the two main needs of transient management are to avoid preoccupation with end-of-spectrum accidents and to improve the rate of technology transfer from best-available analysis and implementation

  20. Coupling auto trophic in vitro plant cultivation system to scanning electron microscope to study plant-fungal interactions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jaeger, N. de; Decock, C.; Declereck, S.; Providencia, I. E. de la

    2010-07-01

    The interactions of plants with pathogens and beneficial micro-organisms have been seldom compared on the same host and under strict controlled auto trophic in vitro culture conditions. Here, the life cycle of two plant beneficial (Glomus sp. MUCL 41833 and Trichoderma harzianum) and one plant pathogen (Rhizoctonia solani) fungi were described on potato (Solanum tuberosum) plantlets under auto trophic in vitro culture conditions using video camera imaging and the scanning electron microscope (SEM). (i) The colony developmental pattern of the extraradical mycelium within the substrate, (ii) the reproduction structures and (iii) the three-dimensional spatial arrangements of the fungal hyphae within the potato root cells were successfully visualized, monitored and described. The combination of the autotrophic in vitro culture system and SEM represent a powerful tool for improving our knowledge on the dynamics of plant-fungal interactions. (Author) 41 refs.

  1. Cisgenesis strongly improves introgression breeding and induced translocation breeding of plants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jacobsen, E.; Schouten, H.J.

    2007-01-01

    There are two ways for genetic improvement in classical plant breeding: crossing and mutation. Plant varieties can also be improved through genetic modification; however, the present GMO regulations are based on risk assessments with the transgenes coming from non-crossable species. Nowadays, DNA

  2. How to improve plant efficiency through leading plant monitoring and control system technology-Almaraz NPP Samo

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Garcia Rodriguez, A.; Schwee, S.M.

    1994-01-01

    The nuclear industry is currently faced with an intense pressure to reduce the cost of electric production. To achieve these cost reductions, utilities are changing the way they have traditionally operated. They are embracing innovative processes and systems to fundamentally change the way they have operated and maintained their plants. Plant monitoring and control technology has been instrumental in affecting these rapid and proactive changes. Our challenge is to use these new technologies in ways that improve plant reliability while lowering operation and maintenance costs. What must we do to increase operational time, improve safety and reliability while reducing all costs including fixed as well as labor? We will discuss an overall plant monitoring system vision that will allow these changes in operational practices. (Author)

  3. Phytomelatonin: Assisting Plants to Survive and Thrive

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Russel J. Reiter

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available This review summarizes the advances that have been made in terms of the identified functions of melatonin in plants. Melatonin is an endogenously-produced molecule in all plant species that have been investigated. Its concentration in plant organs varies in different tissues, e.g., roots versus leaves, and with their developmental stage. As in animals, the pathway of melatonin synthesis in plants utilizes tryptophan as an essential precursor molecule. Melatonin synthesis is inducible in plants when they are exposed to abiotic stresses (extremes of temperature, toxins, increased soil salinity, drought, etc. as well as to biotic stresses (fungal infection. Melatonin aids plants in terms of root growth, leaf morphology, chlorophyll preservation and fruit development. There is also evidence that exogenously-applied melatonin improves seed germination, plant growth and crop yield and its application to plant products post-harvest shows that melatonin advances fruit ripening and may improve food quality. Since melatonin was only discovered in plants two decades ago, there is still a great deal to learn about the functional significance of melatonin in plants. It is the hope of the authors that the current review will serve as a stimulus for scientists to join the endeavor of clarifying the function of this phylogenetically-ancient molecule in plants and particularly in reference to the mechanisms by which melatonin mediates its multiple actions.

  4. Biotechnological improvement of ornamental plants

    OpenAIRE

    Flavia Soledad Darqui; Laura Mabel Radonic; Horacio Esteban Hopp; Marisa Lopez Bilbao

    2017-01-01

    The discovery of commercial transgenic varieties of orange petunias sold in Europe and the United States although they had never reached the approved status, and the consequent recommendation to destroy them, was the trigger to discuss about biotechnological improvement of ornamental plants. Inside the restricted world of 26 vegetal transgenic species, according to the ISAAA’s reports (http://www.isaaa.org), there are three ornamental species: carnation, rose and the Beijing University develo...

  5. Engineering Mycorrhizal Symbioses to Alter Plant Metabolism and Improve Crop Health

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katherine E. French

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Creating sustainable bioeconomies for the 21st century relies on optimizing the use of biological resources to improve agricultural productivity and create new products. Arbuscular mycorrhizae (phylum Glomeromycota form symbiotic relationships with over 80% of vascular plants. In return for carbon, these fungi improve plant health and tolerance to environmental stress. This symbiosis is over 400 million years old and there are currently over 200 known arbuscular mycorrhizae, with dozens of new species described annually. Metagenomic sequencing of native soil communities, from species-rich meadows to mangroves, suggests biologically diverse habitats support a variety of mycorrhizal species with potential agricultural, medical, and biotechnological applications. This review looks at the effect of mycorrhizae on plant metabolism and how we can harness this symbiosis to improve crop health. I will first describe the mechanisms that underlie this symbiosis and what physiological, metabolic, and environmental factors trigger these plant-fungal relationships. These include mycorrhizal manipulation of host genetic expression, host mitochondrial and plastid proliferation, and increased production of terpenoids and jasmonic acid by the host plant. I will then discuss the effects of mycorrhizae on plant root and foliar secondary metabolism. I subsequently outline how mycorrhizae induce three key benefits in crops: defense against pathogen and herbivore attack, drought resistance, and heavy metal tolerance. I conclude with an overview of current efforts to harness mycorrhizal diversity to improve crop health through customized inoculum. I argue future research should embrace synthetic biology to create mycorrhizal chasses with improved symbiotic abilities and potentially novel functions to improve plant health. As the effects of climate change and anthropogenic disturbance increase, the global diversity of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi should be monitored

  6. The experiences to improve plant performance and reliability of Ko-Ri nuclear power plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kang, Ho Weon [Korea Electric Power Corp. Ko-Ri nuclear power division, Ko-Ri (Korea, Republic of)

    1998-07-01

    This paper provides a discussion of the lessons learned from operational experience and the future plans to improve performance of the Ko-Ri plant. To operate nuclear power plants safely with good performance is the only way to mitigate the negative image of nuclear power generation to the public and to enhance the economical benefit compared to other electrical generation method. Therefore, in a continuous effort to overcome a negative challenge from outside, we have driven an aggressive 'OCTF' campaign as part of safety. As a result of our efforts, the following remarkable achievements have been accomplished. (1) 3 times of OCTF during recent three years (2) Selected twice as a top notch power plant on the list of NEI magazine in terms of plant capacity factor (3) No scram recorded in 1997 for all 4 units at Ko-Ri site. Ko-Ri is now undergoing the large scale plant betterment projects for retaking-off our operating performance to the level of new challenge target. Such improvement of critical components in the reactor coolant system and turbine system greatly contribute to increase the safety and reliability of the plant and to shortening of the planned outage period as well as to reduction of radiation exposure and radwaste. (Cho, G. S.). 5 tabs., 10 figs.

  7. Summit on Improving the Economics of America's Nuclear Power Plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Collins, John; Mason, Charles

    2016-01-01

    The Summit on Improving the Economics of America's Nuclear Power Plants was convened May 19, 2016, by Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz and co-sponsored by Idaho Senator Mike Crapo to stress the importance of existing nuclear reactors in meeting our nation's energy goals. The summit was also designed to identify and discuss policy options that can be pursued at federal and state levels to address economic challenges, as well as technical options that utilities can use to improve the economic competitiveness of operating nuclear power plants (NPPs) and avoid early plant retirements that are driven by temporary market conditions. The owners of NPPs face difficult economic decisions and are working to improve the performance of existing NPPs. However, it soon became clear that some of the actions taken by states and regional markets have had an impact on the economic viability of existing power plants, including carbon free NPPs. Summit speakers identified concepts and actions that could be taken at state and federal levels to improve the economics of the existing fleet within these regulated and restructured electricity markets. This report summarizes the speeches, concepts, and actions taken.

  8. Reduce, reuse, and recycle: developmental evolution of trait diversification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Preston, Jill C; Hileman, Lena C; Cubas, Pilar

    2011-03-01

    A major focus of evolutionary developmental (evo-devo) studies is to determine the genetic basis of variation in organismal form and function, both of which are fundamental to biological diversification. Pioneering work on metazoan and flowering plant systems has revealed conserved sets of genes that underlie the bauplan of organisms derived from a common ancestor. However, the extent to which variation in the developmental genetic toolkit mirrors variation at the phenotypic level is an active area of research. Here we explore evidence from the angiosperm evo-devo literature supporting the frugal use of genes and genetic pathways in the evolution of developmental patterning. In particular, these examples highlight the importance of genetic pleiotropy in different developmental modules, thus reducing the number of genes required in growth and development, and the reuse of particular genes in the parallel evolution of ecologically important traits.

  9. Design basis programs and improvements in plant operation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Metcalf, M.F.

    1991-01-01

    Public Service Electric and Gas (PSE and G) Company operates three commercial nuclear power plants in southern New Jersey. The three plants are of different designs and vintages (two pressurized water reactors licensed in 1976 and 1980 and one boiling water reactor licensed in 1986). As the industry recognized the need to develop design basis programs, PSE and G also realized the need after a voluntary 52-day shutdown of one unit because of electrical design basis problems. In its drive to be a premier electric utility, PSE and G has been aggressively active in developing design basis documents (DBDs) with supporting projects and refined uses to obtain the expected value and see the return on investment. Progress on Salem is nearly 75% complete, while Hope Creek is 20% complete. To data, PSE and G has experienced success in the use of DBDs in areas such as development of plant modifications, development of the reliability-centered maintenance program, procedure upgrades, improved document retrieval, resolution of regulatory issues, and training. The paper examines the design basis development process, supporting projects, and expected improvements in plant operations as a result of these efforts

  10. Human performance improvement for nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2005-01-01

    The IAEA assists NPP operating organizations to improve plant performance through a focus on human performance improvement in areas like organizational and leadership development, senior management decision making, organization and management of HPI programmes including tools needed for effective HPI implementation, safety culture enhancement, knowledge management, personnel selection and staffing, career development, training and development, work design, scheduling and conditions, procedure and other job-aid development and use, effective communications, human performance monitoring, motivation. Many NPP operating organizations in Member States, are not yet achieving the full potential of their NPP technology/equipment regarding safety, operational or economic performance due to human performance weaknesses. The IAEA's HPI (Human Performance Improvement) services provide a means for these organizations to efficiently and effectively learn from international experts and the experiences of others in improving plant performance through human performance improvements. NPP operating organizations can benefit from these services in a number of ways, including requesting a national project, participating in a regional project, or requesting an assist visit. The types of activities provided through these services include assistance in benchmarking practices of successful organizations, providing information exchange and reviews of current practices through assist missions, conducting workshops on focused human performance topics, evaluating current human performance methods, including assistance in implementing self assessment programmes and providing support to safety culture enhancement programmes based on self-assessment

  11. Challenges and opportunities for improving food quality and nutrition through plant biotechnology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Francis, David; Finer, John J; Grotewold, Erich

    2017-04-01

    Plant biotechnology has been around since the advent of humankind, resulting in tremendous improvements in plant cultivation through crop domestication, breeding and selection. The emergence of transgenic approaches involving the introduction of defined DNA sequences into plants by humans has rapidly changed the surface of our planet by further expanding the gene pool used by plant breeders for plant improvement. Transgenic approaches in food plants have raised concerns on the merits, social implications, ecological risks and true benefits of plant biotechnology. The recently acquired ability to precisely edit plant genomes by modifying native genes without introducing new genetic material offers new opportunities to rapidly exploit natural variation, create new variation and incorporate changes with the goal to generate more productive and nutritious plants. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Conservation and restoration of indigenous plants to improve community livelihoods: the Useful Plants Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ulian, Tiziana; Sacandé, Moctar; Mattana, Efisio

    2014-05-01

    Kew's Millennium Seed Bank partnership (MSBP) is one of the largest ex situ plant conservation initiatives, which is focused on saving plants in and from regions most at risk, particularly in drylands. Seeds are collected and stored in seed banks in the country of origin and duplicated in the Millennium Seed Bank in the UK. The MSBP also strengthens the capacity of local communities to successfully conserve and sustainably use indigenous plants, which are important for their wellbeing. Since 2007, high quality seed collections and research information have been gathered on ca. 700 useful indigenous plant species that were selected by communities in Botswana, Kenya, Mali, Mexico and South Africa through Project MGU - The Useful Plants Project. These communities range from various farmer's groups and organisations to traditional healers, organic cotton/crop producers and primary schools. The information on seed conservation and plant propagation was used to train communities and to propagate ca. 200 species that were then planted in local gardens, and as species reintroduced for reforestation programmes and enriching village forests. Experimental plots have also been established to further investigate the field performance (plant survival and growth rate) of indigenous species, using low cost procedures. In addition, the activities support revenue generation for local communities directly through the sustainable use of plant products or indirectly through wider environmental and cultural services. This project has confirmed the potential of biodiversity conservation to improve food security and human health, enhance community livelihoods and strengthen the resilience of land and people to the changing climate. This approach of using indigenous species and having local communities play a central role from the selection of species to their planting and establishment, supported by complementary research, may represent a model for other regions of the world, where

  13. Designing nuclear power plants for improved operation and maintenance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1996-09-01

    The purpose of this publication is to compile demonstrated, experience based design guidelines for improving the operability and maintainability of nuclear power plants. The guidelines are for use principally in the design of new nuclear power plants, but should also be useful in upgrading existing designs. The guidelines derive from the experience of operating and maintaining existing nuclear power plants as well as from the design of recent plants. In particular these guidelines are based on and consistent with both the EPRI advanced Light Water Reactor Utility Requirements Document, Volume 1, and the European Utility Requirements for LWR Nuclear Power Plants. 6 refs, 1 fig

  14. Designing nuclear power plants for improved operation and maintenance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1996-09-01

    The purpose of this publication is to compile demonstrated, experience based design guidelines for improving the operability and maintainability of nuclear power plants. The guidelines are for use principally in the design of new nuclear power plants, but should also be useful in upgrading existing designs. The guidelines derive from the experience of operating and maintaining existing nuclear power plants as well as from the design of recent plants. In particular these guidelines are based on and consistent with both the EPRI advanced Light Water Reactor Utility Requirements Document, Volume 1, and the European Utility Requirements for LWR Nuclear Power Plants. 6 refs, 1 fig.

  15. Improvement of nuclear power plant management applying the lessons learned

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lyon, P.W.

    1987-01-01

    Active managment participation is a common thread among nuclear power plants with superior performance. Plants that benefit from the hands-on attention of senior managers are typically more reliable and can be expected to have higher margins of safety. There are numerous ways in which utilities are promoting management involvement in the day-to-day operations of their nuclear plants. The Institute of Nuclear Power Operations' (INPO) Plant Performance Indicator Program provides utilities with data in key performance areas, allowing management to monitor performance and concentrate on areas needing attention. Utilities are also setting ambitious short and long-term goals in several performance areas. This increased management attention to nuclear plant operations is reflected in improved nuclear plant performance across the coutry. For instance, over the past five years, the number of significant events per unit has declined, unplanned automatic scrams have been reduced, equivalent availability is about the same (however, many units and the industry median has improved) and collentive radiation exposure and volume of low-level waste shipped per unit are both showing a decreasing trend. (author)

  16. Continuing harmonization of terminology and innovations for methodologies in developmental toxicology: Report of the 8th Berlin Workshop on Developmental Toxicity, 14-16 May 2014.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Solecki, Roland; Rauch, Martina; Gall, Andrea; Buschmann, Jochen; Clark, Ruth; Fuchs, Antje; Kan, Haidong; Heinrich, Verena; Kellner, Rupert; Knudsen, Thomas B; Li, Weihua; Makris, Susan L; Ooshima, Yojiro; Paumgartten, Francisco; Piersma, Aldert H; Schönfelder, Gilbert; Oelgeschläger, Michael; Schaefer, Christof; Shiota, Kohei; Ulbrich, Beate; Ding, Xuncheng; Chahoud, Ibrahim

    2015-11-01

    This article is a report of the 8th Berlin Workshop on Developmental Toxicity held in May 2014. The main aim of the workshop was the continuing harmonization of terminology and innovations for methodologies used in the assessment of embryo- and fetotoxic findings. The following main topics were discussed: harmonized categorization of external, skeletal, visceral and materno-fetal findings into malformations, variations and grey zone anomalies, aspects of developmental anomalies in humans and laboratory animals, and innovations for new methodologies in developmental toxicology. The application of Version 2 terminology in the DevTox database was considered as a useful improvement in the categorization of developmental anomalies. Participants concluded that initiation of a project for comparative assessments of developmental anomalies in humans and laboratory animals could support regulatory risk assessment and university-based training. Improvement of new methodological approaches for alternatives to animal testing should be triggered for a better understanding of developmental outcomes. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  17. Predictive Maintenance: One key to improved power plant availability

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mobley; Allen, J.W.

    1986-01-01

    Recent developments in microprocessor technology has provided the ability to routinely monitor the actual mechanical condition of all rotating and reciprocating machinery and process variables (i.e. pressure, temperature, flow, etc.) of other process equipment within an operating electric power generating plant. This direct correlation between frequency domain vibration and actual mechanical condition of machinery and trending process variables of non-rotating equipment can provide the ''key'' to improving the availability and reliability, thermal efficiency and provide the baseline information necessary for developing a realistic plan for extending the useful life of power plants. The premise of utilizing microprocessor-based Predictive Maintenance to improve power plant operation has been proven by a number of utilities. This paper provides a comprehensive discussion of the TEC approach to Predictive Maintenance and examples of successful programs

  18. Improving health and education outcomes for children in remote communities: A cross-sector and developmental evaluation approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Debra Maria Jones

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Early childhood is one of the most influential developmental life stages. Attainments at this stage will have implications for the quality of life children experience as they transition to adulthood. Children residing in remote Australia are exposed to socioeconomic disadvantage that can contribute to developmental delays and resultant poorer education and health outcomes. Complex contributing factors in far west New South Wales have resulted in children with speech and fine motor skill delays experiencing no to limited access to allied health services for a number of decades. More recently, growing awareness that no single policy, government agency, or program could effectively respond to these complexities or ensure appropriate allied health service access for children in these communities has led to the development of the Allied Health in Outback Schools Program, which has been operational since 2009. The program is underpinned by cross-sector partnerships and a shared aspirational aim to improve the developmental outcomes of children to enhance their later life opportunities. It was identified early that the initiative had the potential to deliver mutually beneficial outcomes for communities and participating partner organisations. Over the last five years the program has been the catalyst for partnership consolidation, expansion and diversification. The developmental evaluation approach to continuous program adaptation and refinement has provided valuable insights that have informed health and education policy and enabled the program to be responsive to changing community needs, emerging policy and funding reforms. This article explores the evolution of the program partnerships, their contribution to program success and longevity, and their capacity to respond to an emergent and dynamic environment. The authors propose that a community-centred and developmental approach to program innovation and implementation in remote locations is

  19. Improving CANDU plant operation and maintenance through retrofit information technology systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lupton, L.R.; Judd, R.A.; MacBeth, M.J.

    1998-01-01

    CANDU plant owners are facing an increasingly competitive environment for the generation of electricity. To meet this challenge, all owners have identified that information technology offers opportunities for significant improvements in CANDU operation, maintenance and administration (OM and A) costs. Targeted information technology application areas include instrumentation and control, engineering, construction, operations and plant information management. These opportunities also pose challenges and issues that must be addressed if the full benefits of the advances in information technology are to be achieved. Key among these are system hardware and software maintenance, and obsolescence protection; AECL has been supporting CANDU stations with the initial development and evaluation of systems to improve plant performance and cost. Key initiatives that have been implemented or are in the process of being implemented in some CANDU plants to achieve operational benefits include: critical safety parameter monitor system; advanced computerized annunciation system; plant historical data system; and plant display system. Each system will be described in terms of its role in enhancing current CANDU plant performance and how they will contribute to future CANDU plant performance

  20. Improved design on Qinshan 300 MWe nuclear power plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shi Peihua; Cheng Wanli; Lu Rongliang

    1993-01-01

    The main aim, guiding ideology, general performance and parameters of improved design on Qinshan 300 MWe nuclear power plant are presented. Improved items are also introduced including the characteristic of layout in nuclear island building, decreasing unnecessary devices increasing necessary safety facilities and unifying code and standard. The progress of improved design is presented

  1. Improved design on Qinshan 300 MWe nuclear power plant

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Peihua, Shi; Wanli, Cheng; Rongliang, Lu [Shanghai Nuclear Engineering Research and Design Inst. (China)

    1993-06-01

    The main aim, guiding ideology, general performance and parameters of improved design on Qinshan 300 MWe nuclear power plant are presented. Improved items are also introduced including the characteristic of layout in nuclear island building, decreasing unnecessary devices increasing necessary safety facilities and unifying code and standard. The progress of improved design is presented.

  2. Formosa Plastics Corporation: Plant-Wide Assessment of Texas Plant Identifies Opportunities for Improving Process Efficiency and Reducing Energy Costs

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    None

    2005-01-01

    At Formosa Plastics Corporation's plant in Point Comfort, Texas, a plant-wide assessment team analyzed process energy requirements, reviewed new technologies for applicability, and found ways to improve the plant's energy efficiency. The assessment team identified the energy requirements of each process and compared actual energy consumption with theoretical process requirements. The team estimated that total annual energy savings would be about 115,000 MBtu for natural gas and nearly 14 million kWh for electricity if the plant makes several improvements, which include upgrading the gas compressor impeller, improving the vent blower system, and recovering steam condensate for reuse. Total annual cost savings could be $1.5 million. The U.S. Department of Energy's Industrial Technologies Program cosponsored this assessment.

  3. Intranasal insulin to improve developmental delay in children with 22q13 deletion syndrome: an exploratory clinical trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, H; Kern, W; Giese, R; Hallschmid, M; Enders, A

    2009-04-01

    The 22q13 deletion syndrome (Phelan-McDermid syndrome) is characterised by a global developmental delay, absent or delayed speech, generalised hypotonia, autistic behaviour and characteristic phenotypic features. Intranasal insulin has been shown to improve declarative memory in healthy adult subjects and in patients with Alzheimer disease. To assess if intranasal insulin is also able to improve the developmental delay in children with 22q13 deletion syndrome. We performed exploratory clinical trials in six children with 22q13 deletion syndrome who received intranasal insulin over a period of 1 year. Short-term (during the first 6 weeks) and long-term effects (after 12 months of treatment) on motor skills, cognitive functions, or autonomous functions, speech and communication, emotional state, social behaviour, behavioural disorders, independence in daily living and education were assessed. The children showed marked short-term improvements in gross and fine motor activities, cognitive functions and educational level. Positive long-term effects were found for fine and gross motor activities, nonverbal communication, cognitive functions and autonomy. Possible side effects were found in one patient who displayed changes in balance, extreme sensitivity to touch and general loss of interest. One patient complained of intermittent nose bleeding. We conclude that long-term administration of intranasal insulin may benefit motor development, cognitive functions and spontaneous activity in children with 22q13 deletion syndrome.

  4. Biochar Improves Performance of Plants for Mine Soil Revegetation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biochar (the solid by-product of pyrolysis of biomass), has the potential to improve plant performance for revegetation of mine soils by improving soil chemistry, fertility, moisture holding capacity and by binding heavy metals. We investigated the effect of gasified conifer sof...

  5. Improving geothermal power plants with a binary cycle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomarov, G. V.; Shipkov, A. A.; Sorokina, E. V.

    2015-12-01

    The recent development of binary geothermal technology is analyzed. General trends in the introduction of low-temperature geothermal sources are summarized. The use of single-phase low-temperature geothermal fluids in binary power plants proves possible and expedient. The benefits of power plants with a binary cycle in comparison with traditional systems are shown. The selection of the working fluid is considered, and the influence of the fluid's physicochemical properties on the design of the binary power plant is discussed. The design of binary power plants is based on the chemical composition and energy potential of the geothermal fluids and on the landscape and climatic conditions at the intended location. Experience in developing a prototype 2.5 MW Russian binary power unit at Pauzhetka geothermal power plant (Kamchatka) is outlined. Most binary systems are designed individually for a specific location. Means of improving the technology and equipment at binary geothermal power plants are identified. One option is the development of modular systems based on several binary systems that employ the heat from the working fluid at different temperatures.

  6. Advanced digital technology - improving nuclear power plant performance through maintainability

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ford, J.L.; Senechal, R.R.; Altenhein, G.D.; Harvey, R.P.

    1998-01-01

    In today's energy sector there is ever increasing pressure on utilities to operate power plants at high capacity factors. To ensure nuclear power is competitive into the next century, it is imperative that strategic design improvements be made to enhance the performance of nuclear power plants. There are a number of factors that affect a nuclear power plant's performance; lifetime maintenance is one of the major contributors. The maturing of digital technology has afforded ABB the opportunity to make significant design improvements in the area of maintainability. In keeping with ABB's evolutionary advanced nuclear plant design approach, digital technology has systematically been incorporated into the control and protection systems of the most recent Korean nuclear units in operation and under construction. One example of this was the multi-functional design team approach that was utilized for the development of ABB's Digital Plant Protection System (DPPS). The design team consisted of engineers, maintenance technicians, procurement specialists and manufacturing personnel in order to provide a complete perspective on all facets of the design. The governing design goals of increased reliability and safety, simplicity of design, use of off-the-shelf products and reduced need for periodic surveillance testing were met with the selection of proven ABB-Advant Programmable Logic Controllers (PLCs) as the heart of the DPPS. The application of digital PLC technology allows operation for extended periods without requiring routine maintenance or re-calibration. A well documented commercial dedication program approved by the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission (US NRC) as part of the System 80+ TM Advanced Light Water Reactor Design Certification Program, allowed the use of off-the shelf products in the design of the safety protection system. In addition, a number of mechanical and electrical improvements were made which support maintainability. The result is a DPPS

  7. SALT TOLERANCE OF CROP PLANTS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hamdia, M. A

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Several environmental factors adversely affect plant growth and development and final yield performance of a crop. Drought, salinity, nutrient imbalances (including mineral toxicities and deficiencies and extremes of temperature are among the major environmental constraints to crop productivity worldwide. Development of crop plants with stress tolerance, however, requires, among others, knowledge of the physiological mechanisms and genetic controls of the contributing traits at different plant developmental stages. In the past 2 decades, biotechnology research has provided considerable insights into the mechanism of biotic stress tolerance in plants at the molecular level. Furthermore, different abiotic stress factors may provoke osmotic stress, oxidative stress and protein denaturation in plants, which lead to similar cellular adaptive responses such as accumulation of compatible solutes, induction of stress proteins, and acceleration of reactive oxygen species scavenging systems. Recently, the authores try to improve plant tolerance to salinity injury through either chemical treatments (plant hormones, minerals, amino acids, quaternary ammonium compounds, polyamines and vitamins or biofertilizers treatments (Asymbiotic nitrogen-fixing bacteria, symbiotic nitrogen-fixing bacteria and mycorrhiza or enhanced a process used naturally by plants to minimise the movement of Na+ to the shoot, using genetic modification to amplify the process, helping plants to do what they already do - but to do it much better."

  8. Use of nondestructive evaluation methods to improve power plant availability

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Weber, R.M.

    1985-01-01

    On an ever-increasing basis, utilities are relying on nondestructive evaluation (NDE) as a management and planning tool. In addition to the conventional ASME Code and Technical Specification-required examinations, progressive utilities are utilizing NDE sampling programs to monitor existing conditions and search for potential situations affecting plant safety and reliability. Improved NDE detection and sizing procedures give management personnel the accurate information needed to make the ''go/no go'' decisions on repair programs which can significantly affect plant availability. As the burden of regulatory-imposed inspection requirements increases, plant personnel are increasingly cognizant that NDE is a significant factor in their plant's outage schedule. Whether an outage is scheduled or forced, NDE becomes part of each plant's program to assure the safety and reliability of its critical components. Knowledge and planning of NDE application is important because of the time expended in examination performance and subsequent data evaluation. Managers who are knowledgeable in NDE application can effectively improve plant availability by scheduling NDE as an integral part of their maintenance programs. Examination results can then be used in making decisions directly affecting availability

  9. Plant ABC transporters enable many unique aspects of a terrestrial plant's lifestyle

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hwang, Jae-Ung; Song, Won-Yong; Hong, Daewoong

    2016-01-01

    Terrestrial plants have two to four times more ATP-binding cassette (ABC) transporter genes than other organisms, including their ancestral microalgae. Recent studies found that plants harboring mutations in these transporters exhibit dramatic phenotypes, many of which are related to developmental...... to propose that diverse ABC transporters enabled many unique and essential aspects of a terrestrial plant's lifestyle, by transporting various compounds across specific membranes of the plant....

  10. Improving the safety of LWR power plants. Final report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1980-04-01

    This report documents the results of the Study to identify current, potential research issues and efforts for improving the safety of Light Water Reactor (LWR) power plants. This final report describes the work accomplished, the results obtained, the problem areas, and the recommended solutions. Specifically, for each of the issues identified in this report for improving the safety of LWR power plants, a description is provided in detail of the safety significance, the current status (including information sources, status of technical knowledge, problem solution and current activities), and the suggestions for further research and development. Further, the issues are ranked for action into high, medium, and low priority with respect to primarily (a) improved safety (e.g. potential reduction in public risk and occupational exposure), and secondly (b) reduction in safety-related costs

  11. Improving CANDU plant operation and maintenance through retrofit information technology systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lupton, L. R.; Judd, R. A.

    1998-01-01

    CANDU plant owners are facing an increasingly competitive environment for the generation of electricity. To meet this challenge, all owners have identified that information technology offers opportunities for significant improvements in CANDU operation, maintenance and administration (OM and A) costs. Targeted information technology application areas include instrumentation and control, engineering, construction, operations and plant information management. These opportunities also pose challenges and issues that must be addressed if the full benefits of the advances in information technology are to be achieved. Key among these are system hardware and software maintenance, and obsolescence protection. AECL has been supporting CANDU stations with the initial development and evaluation of systems to improve plant performance and cost. Five key initiatives that have been implemented or are in the process of being implemented in some CANDU plants to achieve cooperational benefits include: critical safety parameter monitor system; advanced computerized annunciation system; plant historical data system; plant display system; and digital protection system. Each system will be described in terms of its role in enhancing current CANDU plant performance and how they will contribute to future CANDU plant performance. (author). 8 refs., 3 figs

  12. Improvement of layout and piping design for PWR nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nozue, Kosei; Waki, Masato; Kashima, Hiroo; Yoshioka, Tsuyoshi; Obara, Ichiro.

    1983-01-01

    For a nuclear power plant, a period of nearly ten years is required from the initial planning stage to commencement of transmission after passing through the design, manufacturing, installation and trial running stages. In the current climate there is a trend that the time required for nuclear power plant construction will further increase when locational problems, thorough explanation to residents in the neighborhood of the construction site and their under-standing, subsequent safety checks and measures to be taken in compliance with various controls and regulations which get tighter year after year, are taken into account. Under such circumstances, in order to satisfy requirements such as improving the reliability of the nuclear power plant design, manufacturing and construction departments, improvements in the economy as well as the quality and shortening of construction periods, the design structure for Mitsubishi PWR nuclear power plants was thoroughly consolidated with regard to layout and piping design. At the same time, diversified design improvements were made with the excellent domestic technology based on plant designs imported from the U.S.A. An outline of the priority items is introduced in this paper. (author)

  13. Understanding nitrate uptake, signaling and remobilisation for improving plant nitrogen use efficiency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kant, Surya

    2018-02-01

    The majority of terrestrial plants use nitrate as their main source of nitrogen. Nitrate also acts as an important signalling molecule in vital physiological processes required for optimum plant growth and development. Improving nitrate uptake and transport, through activation by nitrate sensing, signalling and regulatory processes, would enhance plant growth, resulting in improved crop yields. The increased remobilisation of nitrate, and assimilated nitrogenous compounds, from source to sink tissues further ensures higher yields and quality. An updated knowledge of various transporters, genes, activators, and microRNAs, involved in nitrate uptake, transport, remobilisation, and nitrate-mediated root growth, is presented. An enhanced understanding of these components will allow for their orchestrated fine tuning in efforts to improving nitrogen use efficiency in plants. Crown Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Plant mutation breeding for crop improvement. V.2

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1991-01-01

    This volume contains the proceedings of the final two sessions of the FAO/IAEA Symposium on Plant Mutation Breeding for Crop Improvement, focussing on mutation breeding with particular objectives and the methodology of mutation breeding. The individual contributions are indexed separately. Although a wide variety of topics is included, the emphasis is on the use of (mainly gamma) radiation to induce economically useful mutants in cereals and legumes. The results of many conventional plant breeding programs are also presented. Refs, figs and tabs

  15. Plant mutation breeding for crop improvement. V.1

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1991-01-01

    This volume contains the proceedings of the first two sessions of the FAO/IAEA Symposium on Plant Mutation Breeding for Crop Improvement, focussing on mutation breeding in particular countries and crop-specific mutation breeding. The individual contributions are indexed separately. Although a wide variety of topics is included, the emphasis is on the use of (mainly gamma) radiation to induce economically useful mutants in cereals and legumes. The results of many conventional plant breeding programs are also presented. Refs, figs and tabs

  16. Improving the safety of workers in the vicinity of mobile plant

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2001-07-01

    This report investigates possible approaches and technologies to improve the safety of pedestrians around mobile plant. The study has considered mobile plant in underground mining, surface mineral extraction and warehousing and materials handling. It investigates vehicle ergonomics and visual task analysis, aids to improve reversing and sight lines, direct body detection techniques, conventional transponder (RFID) and VLF magnetic dipole detection technologies. 43 refs., 5 apps.

  17. Present status and recent improvements of water chemistry at Russian VVER plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mamet, V.; Yurmanov, V.

    2001-01-01

    Water chemistry is an important contributor to reliable plant operation, safety barrier integrity, plant component lifetime, radiation safety, environmental impact. Primary and secondary water chemistry guidelines of Russian VVER plants have been modified to meet the new safety standards. At present 14 VVER units of different generation are in operation at 5 Russian NPPs. There are eight 4-loop pressurised water reactors VVER-1000 (1000 MWe) and six 6-loop pressurised water reactors VVER-440 (440 MWe). Generally, water chemistry at East European VVER plants (about 40 VVER-440 and VVER-1000 units in Ukraine, Bulgaria, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Finland and Armenia) is similar to water chemistry at Russian VVER plants. Due to similar design and structural materials some water chemistry improvements were introduced at East European plants after they has been successfully implemented at Russian plants and vice versa. Some water chemistry improvements will be implemented at modern VVER plants under construction in Ukraine, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Iran, China, India. (R.P.)

  18. Root developmental programs shape the Medicago truncatula nodule meristem

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Franssen, H.; Xiao, T.T.; Kulikova, O.; Wan, X.; Bisseling, T.; Scheres, B.; Heidstra, R.

    2015-01-01

    Nodules on the roots of legume plants host nitrogen-fixing Rhizobium bacteria. Several lines of evidence indicate that nodules are evolutionarily related to roots. We determined whether developmental control of the Medicago truncatula nodule meristem bears resemblance to that in root meristems

  19. Developmental Competence of Vitrified-Warmed Bovine Oocytes at the Germinal-Vesicle Stage is Improved by Cyclic Adenosine Monophosphate Modulators during In Vitro Maturation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kenji Ezoe

    Full Text Available Cryopreservation of mature oocytes and embryos has provided numerous benefits in reproductive medicine. Although successful cryopreservation of germinal-vesicle stage (GV oocytes holds promise for further advances in reproductive biology and clinical embryology fields, reports regarding cryopreservation of immature oocytes are limited. Oocyte survival and maturation rates have improved since vitrification is being performed at the GV stage, but the subsequent developmental competence of GV oocytes is still low. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of supplementation of the maturation medium with cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP modulators on the developmental competence of vitrified-warmed GV bovine oocytes. GV oocytes were vitrified-warmed and cultured to allow for oocyte maturation, and then parthenogenetically activated or fertilized in vitro. Our results indicate that addition of a cAMP modulator forskolin (FSK or 3-isobutyl-1-methylxanthine (IBMX to the maturation medium significantly improved the developmental competence of vitrified-warmed GV oocytes. We also demonstrated that vitrification of GV oocytes led to a decline in cAMP levels and maturation-promoting factor (MPF activity in the oocytes during the initial and final phases of maturation, respectively. Nevertheless, the addition of FSK or IBMX to the maturation medium significantly elevated cAMP levels and MPF activity during IVM. Taken together, our results suggest that the cryopreservation-associated meiotic and developmental abnormalities observed in GV oocytes may be ameliorated by an artificial increase in cAMP levels during maturation culture after warming.

  20. Biotechnological Strategies to Improve Plant Biomass Quality for Bioethanol Production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julián Mario Peña-Castro

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The transition from an economy dependent on nonrenewable energy sources to one with higher diversity of renewables will not be a simple process. It requires an important research effort to adapt to the dynamics of the changing energy market, sort costly processes, and avoid overlapping with social interest markets such as food and livestock production. In this review, we analyze the desirable traits of raw plant materials for the bioethanol industry and the molecular biotechnology strategies employed to improve them, in either plants already under use (as maize or proposed species (large grass families. The fundamentals of these applications can be found in the mechanisms by which plants have evolved different pathways to manage carbon resources for reproduction or survival in unexpected conditions. Here, we review the means by which this information can be used to manipulate these mechanisms for commercial uses, including saccharification improvement of starch and cellulose, decrease in cell wall recalcitrance through lignin modification, and increase in plant biomass.

  1. Biotechnological Strategies to Improve Plant Biomass Quality for Bioethanol Production

    Science.gov (United States)

    del Moral, Sandra; Núñez-López, Lizeth; Barrera-Figueroa, Blanca E.; Amaya-Delgado, Lorena

    2017-01-01

    The transition from an economy dependent on nonrenewable energy sources to one with higher diversity of renewables will not be a simple process. It requires an important research effort to adapt to the dynamics of the changing energy market, sort costly processes, and avoid overlapping with social interest markets such as food and livestock production. In this review, we analyze the desirable traits of raw plant materials for the bioethanol industry and the molecular biotechnology strategies employed to improve them, in either plants already under use (as maize) or proposed species (large grass families). The fundamentals of these applications can be found in the mechanisms by which plants have evolved different pathways to manage carbon resources for reproduction or survival in unexpected conditions. Here, we review the means by which this information can be used to manipulate these mechanisms for commercial uses, including saccharification improvement of starch and cellulose, decrease in cell wall recalcitrance through lignin modification, and increase in plant biomass. PMID:28951875

  2. Genetics and plant development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prunet, Nathanaël; Meyerowitz, Elliot M

    2016-01-01

    There are only three grand theories in biology: the theory of the cell, the theory of the gene, and the theory of evolution. Two of these, the cell and gene theories, originated in the study of plants, with the third resulting in part from botanical considerations as well. Mendel's elucidation of the rules of inheritance was a result of his experiments on peas. The rediscovery of Mendel's work in 1900 was by the botanists de Vries, Correns, and Tschermak. It was only in subsequent years that animals were also shown to have segregation of genetic elements in the exact same manner as had been shown in plants. The story of developmental biology is different - while the development of plants has long been studied, the experimental and genetic approaches to developmental mechanism were developed via experiments on animals, and the importance of genes in development (e.g., Waddington, 1940) and their use for understanding developmental mechanisms came to botanical science much later - as late as the 1980s. Copyright © 2016 Académie des sciences. Published by Elsevier SAS. All rights reserved.

  3. Upgrading and efficiency improvement in coal-fired power plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2013-08-01

    Improving the efficiencies of the large number of older coal-fired power plants operating around the world would give major savings in CO2 emissions together with significant other benefits. This report begins with a summary of the ways efficiency can become degraded and of the means available to combat the decrease in performance. These include improvements to operating and maintenance practices and more major techniques that are available, including boiler and turbine retrofits. There is also an update on fuel drying developments as a route to higher efficiency in plants firing high moisture lignites. The largest chapter of the report contains a number of descriptions of case study improvement projects, to illustrate measures that have been applied, benefits that have been achieved and identify best practices, which are summarised. Major national and international upgrading programmes are described.

  4. [Contemporary cognitive theories about developmental dyscalculia].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castro-Cañizares, D; Estévez-Pérez, N; Reigosa-Crespo, V

    To analyze the current theories describing the cognitive mechanisms underlying developmental dyscalculia. The four most researched hypotheses concerning the cognitive deficits related to developmental dyscalculia, as well as experimental evidences supporting or refusing them are presented. The first hypothesis states that developmental dyscalculia is consequence of domain general cognitive deficits. The second hypothesis suggests that it is due to a failure in the development of specialized brain systems dedicated to numerosity processing. The third hypothesis asserts the disorder is caused by a deficit in accessing quantity representation through numerical symbols. The last hypothesis states developmental dyscalculia appears as a consequence of impairments in a generalized magnitude system dedicated to the processing of continuous and discrete magnitudes. None of the hypotheses has been proven more plausible than the rest. Relevant issues rose by them need to be revisited and answered in the light of new experimental designs. In the last years the understanding of cognitive disorders involved in developmental dyscalculia has remarkably increased, but it is nonetheless insufficient. Additional research is required in order to achieve a comprehensive cognitive model of numerical processing development and its disorders. This will improve the diagnostic precision and the effectiveness of developmental dyscalculia intervention strategies.

  5. Plant water potential improves prediction of empirical stomatal models.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William R L Anderegg

    Full Text Available Climate change is expected to lead to increases in drought frequency and severity, with deleterious effects on many ecosystems. Stomatal responses to changing environmental conditions form the backbone of all ecosystem models, but are based on empirical relationships and are not well-tested during drought conditions. Here, we use a dataset of 34 woody plant species spanning global forest biomes to examine the effect of leaf water potential on stomatal conductance and test the predictive accuracy of three major stomatal models and a recently proposed model. We find that current leaf-level empirical models have consistent biases of over-prediction of stomatal conductance during dry conditions, particularly at low soil water potentials. Furthermore, the recently proposed stomatal conductance model yields increases in predictive capability compared to current models, and with particular improvement during drought conditions. Our results reveal that including stomatal sensitivity to declining water potential and consequent impairment of plant water transport will improve predictions during drought conditions and show that many biomes contain a diversity of plant stomatal strategies that range from risky to conservative stomatal regulation during water stress. Such improvements in stomatal simulation are greatly needed to help unravel and predict the response of ecosystems to future climate extremes.

  6. Improvement of shearing machine in the Tokai Reprocessing Plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Takae, Akiyoshi; Otani, Yoshikuni

    1994-01-01

    The shearing machine in the Tokai Reprocessing Plant has been improved and refurbished through its operational experience for about 20 years. Every component except the shear housing and magazine is changed for improved things by PNC, while the shearing machine had been designed and fabricated originally by a French Company. The improvement of the shearing machine was carried out for the purpose of settling the problems which were experienced in the past operation, and improving durability, remote maintainability, and operability. The details of their improvement work are described. (author)

  7. Concerted transcription of auxin and carbohydrate homeostasis-related genes underlies improved adventitious rooting of microcuttings derived from far-red treated Eucalyptus globulus Labill mother plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruedell, Carolina Michels; de Almeida, Márcia Rodrigues; Fett-Neto, Arthur Germano

    2015-12-01

    Economically important plant species, such as Eucalyptus globulus, are often rooting recalcitrant. We have previously shown that far-red light enrichment applied to E. globulus donor-plants improved microcutting rooting competence and increased rooting zone/shoot carbohydrate ratio. To better understand this developmental response, the relative expression profiles of genes involved in auxin signaling (ARF6, ARF8, AGO1), biosynthesis (YUC3) and transport (AUX1, PIN1, PIN2); sucrose cleavage (SUS1, CWINV1), transport (SUC5), hexose phosphorylation (HXK1, FLN1) and starch biosynthesis (SS3) were quantified during adventitious rooting of E. globulus microcuttings derived from donor plants exposed to far-red or white light. Expression of auxin transport-related genes increased in the first days of root induction. Far-red enrichment of donor plants induced ARF6, ARF8 and AGO1 in microcuttings. The first two gene products could activate GH3 and other rooting related genes, whereas AGO1 deregulation of the repressor ARF17 may relief rooting inhibition. Increased sink strength at the basal stem with sucrose unloading in root tissue mediated by SUC and subsequent hydrolysis by SUS1 were also supported by gene expression profile. Fructose phosphorylation and starch biosynthesis could also contribute to proper carbon allocation at the site of rooting, as evidenced by increased expression of related genes. These data are in good agreement with increased contents of hexoses and starch at the cutting base severed from far-red exposed donor plants. To sum up, pathways integrating auxin and carbohydrate metabolism were activated in microcuttings derived from donor plants exposed to far red light enrichment, thereby improving rooting response in E. globulus. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  8. Water deficiency at different developmental stages of Glycine max can improve drought tolerance Deficiência hídrica em diferentes estágios de desenvolvimento de soja pode aumentar a tolerância à seca

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alan Panaia Kron

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Developmental windows are specific periods of sensitivity during normal plant development in which a perturbation may be adaptively integrated. In these periods, sub-lethal environmental perturbations may improve the capacity to grow at lethal conditions. The aim of this study was to test the hypothesis that previous non-lethal water deficit applied in different developmental stages in soybean plants could enables them to improve the tolerance to environmental perturbations. In order to test this hypothesis we carried out an experiment with soybean plants submitted to water deficit in different stages of plant development, evaluating yield and physiological aspects. Our results indicated that water deficit experienced on V4 stage (vegetative induces more suitable response, enabling plants to develop a process of tolerance improvement to a further water shortage period, probably through a reduction of growth, which maintains a conservative strategy of energy use. On the other hand, water deficit in R1 stage (reproductive, increased the plant susceptibility to posterior water withholding. This " strategy" was the opposite of the one employed by plants on V4 stage, i.e., to maintain growth rate probably at the expense of a higher energetic cost.Janelas de desenvolvimento são períodos específicos durante o ciclo de vida das plantas em que uma perturbação ambiental pode ser incorporada através de um processo de adaptação. Nesses períodos, perturbações ambientais subletais podem capacitar as plantas a crescer em condições letais. O objetivo deste trabalho foi testar a hipótese de que plantas de soja (Glycine max submetidas à deficiência hídrica não-letal em diferentes estágios de seu desenvolvimento poderiam otimizar sua tolerância a estresses ambientais posteriores. Para testar essa hipótese, foi conduzido um experimento com plantas de soja submetidas à deficiência hídrica em diferentes estágios de desenvolvimento, avaliando

  9. Current status of developmental neurotoxicity: regulatory view

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hass, Ulla

    2003-01-01

    in the testing strategy for new and existing substances, and biocides. Hopefully, this will lead to an improved database for risk assessment of potential developmental neurotoxicants. However, the regulatory authorities and toxicologists will also be faced with the challenge that decisions have to be made......The need for developmental neurotoxicity testing has been recognized for decades and guidelines are available, as the USEPA guideline and the OECD draft TG 426. Regulatory testing of industrial chemicals for developmental neurotoxicity is required to some extent, especially for pesticides in the US....... Until recently, however, developmental neurotoxicity testing of industrial chemicals has not been a clear regulatory requirement in EU, probably due to the lack of an accepted OECD TG. The revised EU Technical Guidance Document for Risk Assessment (EU-TGD) has now included the OECD draft TG 426...

  10. Language used in interaction during developmental science instruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Avenia-Tapper, Brianna

    The coordination of theory and evidence is an important part of scientific practice. Developmental approaches to instruction, which make the relationship between the abstract and the concrete a central focus of students' learning activity, provide educators with a unique opportunity to strengthen students' coordination of theory and evidence. Therefore, developmental approaches may be a useful instructional response to documented science achievement gaps for linguistically diverse students. However, if we are to leverage the potential of developmental instruction to improve the science achievement of linguistically diverse students, we need more information on the intersection of developmental science instruction and linguistically diverse learning contexts. This manuscript style dissertation uses discourse analysis to investigate the language used in interaction during developmental teaching-learning in three linguistically diverse third grade classrooms. The first manuscript asks how language was used to construct ascension from the abstract to the concrete. The second manuscript asks how students' non-English home languages were useful (or not) for meeting the learning goals of the developmental instructional program. The third manuscript asks how students' interlocutors may influence student choice to use an important discourse practice--justification--during the developmental teaching-learning activity. All three manuscripts report findings relevant to the instructional decisions that teachers need to make when implementing developmental instruction in linguistically diverse contexts.

  11. The female gametophyte: an emerging model for cell type-specific systems biology in plant development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marc William Schmid

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Systems biology, a holistic approach describing a system emerging from the interactions of its molecular components, critically depends on accurate qualitative determination and quantitative measurements of these components. Development and improvement of large-scale profiling methods (omics now facilitates comprehensive measurements of many relevant molecules. For multicellular organisms, such as animals, fungi, algae, and plants, the complexity of the system is augmented by the presence of specialized cell types and organs, and a complex interplay within and between them. Cell type-specific analyses are therefore crucial for the understanding of developmental processes and environmental responses. This review first gives an overview of current methods used for large-scale profiling of specific cell types exemplified by recent advances in plant biology. The focus then lies on suitable model systems to study plant development and cell type specification. We introduce the female gametophyte of flowering plants as an ideal model to study fundamental developmental processes. Moreover, the female reproductive lineage is of importance for the emergence of evolutionary novelties such as an unequal parental contribution to the tissue nurturing the embryo or the clonal production of seeds by asexual reproduction (apomixis. Understanding these processes is not only interesting from a developmental or evolutionary perspective, but bears great potential for further crop improvement and the simplification of breeding efforts. We finally highlight novel methods, which are already available or which will likely soon facilitate large-scale profiling of the specific cell types of the female gametophyte in both model and non-model species. We conclude that it may take only few years until an evolutionary systems biology approach toward female gametogenesis may decipher some of its biologically most interesting and economically most valuable processes.

  12. Constructivist developmental theory is needed in developmental neuroscience

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arsalidou, Marie; Pascual-Leone, Juan

    2016-12-01

    Neuroscience techniques provide an open window previously unavailable to the origin of thoughts and actions in children. Developmental cognitive neuroscience is booming, and knowledge from human brain mapping is finding its way into education and pediatric practice. Promises of application in developmental cognitive neuroscience rests however on better theory-guided data interpretation. Massive amounts of neuroimaging data from children are being processed, yet published studies often do not frame their work within developmental models—in detriment, we believe, to progress in this field. Here we describe some core challenges in interpreting the data from developmental cognitive neuroscience, and advocate the use of constructivist developmental theories of human cognition with a neuroscience interpretation.

  13. Developmental Localization and Methylesterification of Pectin Epitopes during Somatic Embryogenesis of Banana (Musa spp. AAA)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Chunxiang; Zhao, Lu; Pan, Xiao; Šamaj, Jozef

    2011-01-01

    Background The plant cell walls play an important role in somatic embryogenesis and plant development. Pectins are major chemical components of primary cell walls while homogalacturonan (HG) is the most abundant pectin polysaccharide. Developmental regulation of HG methyl-esterification degree is important for cell adhesion, division and expansion, and in general for proper organ and plant development. Methodology/Principal Findings Developmental localization of pectic homogalacturonan (HG) epitopes and the (1→4)-β-D-galactan epitope of rhamnogalacturonan I (RG-I) and degree of pectin methyl-esterification (DM) were studied during somatic embryogenesis of banana (Musa spp. AAA). Histological analysis documented all major developmental stages including embryogenic cells (ECs), pre-globular, globular, pear-shaped and cotyledonary somatic embryos. Histochemical staining of extracellularly secreted pectins with ruthenium red showed the most intense staining at the surface of pre-globular, globular and pear-shaped somatic embryos. Biochemical analysis revealed developmental regulation of galacturonic acid content and DM in diverse embryogenic stages. Immunodots and immunolabeling on tissue sections revealed developmental regulation of highly methyl-esterified HG epitopes recognized by JIM7 and LM20 antibodies during somatic embryogenesis. Cell walls of pre-globular/globular and late-stage embryos contained both low methyl-esterified HG epitopes as well as partially and highly methyl-esterified ones. Extracellular matrix which covered surface of early developing embryos contained pectin epitopes recognized by 2F4, LM18, JIM5, JIM7 and LM5 antibodies. De-esterification of cell wall pectins by NaOH caused a decrease or an elimination of immunolabeling in the case of highly methyl-esterified HG epitopes. However, immunolabeling of some low methyl-esterified epitopes appeared stronger after this base treatment. Conclusions/Significance These data suggest that both low

  14. Improvements of radioactive waste management at WWER nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2006-04-01

    This report is part of a systematic IAEA effort to improve waste management practices at WWER plants and to make them consistent with the current requirements and standards for safe and reliable operation of nuclear power plants. The report reviews the wet and dry solid waste management practices at the various types of WWER nuclear power plants (NPP) and describes approaches and recent achievements in waste minimization. Waste minimization practices in use at western PWRs are reviewed and compared, and their applicability at WWER plants is evaluated. Radioactive waste volume reduction issues and waste management practices are reflected in many IAEA publications. However, aspects of waste minimization specific to individual WWER nuclear power plant designs and WWER waste management policies are not addressed extensively in those publications. This report covers the important aspects applicable to the improvement of waste management at WWER NPP, including both plant-level and country-level considerations. It is recognized that most WWER plants are already implementing many of these concepts and recommendations with varying degrees of success; others will benefit from the included considerations. The major issues addressed are: - Review of current waste management policies and practices related to WWERs and western PWRs, including the influence of the original design concepts and significant modifications, liquid waste discharge limits and dry solid waste clearance levels applied in individual countries, national policies and laws, and other relevant aspects affecting the nature and quantities of waste arisings; - Identification of strategies and methods for improving the radioactive waste management generated in normal operation and maintenance at WWERs. This report is a composite (combination) of the two separate initiatives mentioned above. The first draft report was prepared at the meeting 26-30 May 1997 by five consultants. The draft was improved during an

  15. Summit on Improving the Economics of America's Nuclear Power Plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Collins, John [Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States); Mason, Charles [Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States)

    2016-09-01

    The Summit on Improving the Economics of America’s Nuclear Power Plants was convened May 19, 2016, by Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz and co-sponsored by Idaho Senator Mike Crapo to stress the importance of existing nuclear reactors in meeting our nation’s energy goals. The summit was also designed to identify and discuss policy options that can be pursued at federal and state levels to address economic challenges, as well as technical options that utilities can use to improve the economic competitiveness of operating nuclear power plants (NPPs) and avoid early plant retirements that are driven by temporary market conditions. The owners of NPPs face difficult economic decisions and are working to improve the performance of existing NPPs. However, it soon became clear that some of the actions taken by states and regional markets have had an impact on the economic viability of existing power plants, including carbon free NPPs. Summit speakers identified concepts and actions that could be taken at state and federal levels to improve the economics of the existing fleet within these regulated and restructured electricity markets. This report summarizes the speeches, concepts, and actions taken.

  16. Understanding plant response to nitrogen limitation for the improvement of crop nitrogen use efficiency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kant, Surya; Bi, Yong-Mei; Rothstein, Steven J

    2011-02-01

    Development of genetic varieties with improved nitrogen use efficiency (NUE) is essential for sustainable agriculture. Generally, NUE can be divided into two parts. First, assimilation efficiency involves nitrogen (N) uptake and assimilation and second utilization efficiency involves N remobilization. Understanding the mechanisms regulating these processes is crucial for the improvement of NUE in crop plants. One important approach is to develop an understanding of the plant response to different N regimes, especially to N limitation, using various methods including transcription profiling, analysing mutants defective in their normal response to N limitation, and studying plants that show better growth under N-limiting conditions. One can then attempt to improve NUE in crop plants using the knowledge gained from these studies. There are several potential genetic and molecular approaches for the improvement of crop NUE discussed in this review. Increased knowledge of how plants respond to different N levels as well as to other environmental conditions is required to achieve this.

  17. Computational Modeling of Auxin: A Foundation for Plant Engineering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morales-Tapia, Alejandro; Cruz-Ramírez, Alfredo

    2016-01-01

    Since the development of agriculture, humans have relied on the cultivation of plants to satisfy our increasing demand for food, natural products, and other raw materials. As we understand more about plant development, we can better manipulate plants to fulfill our particular needs. Auxins are a class of simple metabolites that coordinate many developmental activities like growth and the appearance of functional structures in plants. Computational modeling of auxin has proven to be an excellent tool in elucidating many mechanisms that underlie these developmental events. Due to the complexity of these mechanisms, current modeling efforts are concerned only with single phenomena focused on narrow spatial and developmental contexts; but a general model of plant development could be assembled by integrating the insights from all of them. In this perspective, we summarize the current collection of auxin-driven computational models, focusing on how they could come together into a single model for plant development. A model of this nature would allow researchers to test hypotheses in silico and yield accurate predictions about the behavior of a plant under a given set of physical and biochemical constraints. It would also provide a solid foundation toward the establishment of plant engineering, a proposed discipline intended to enable the design and production of plants that exhibit an arbitrarily defined set of features.

  18. Regulating nutrient allocation in plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Udvardi, Michael; Yang, Jiading; Worley, Eric

    2014-12-09

    The invention provides coding and promoter sequences for a VS-1 and AP-2 gene, which affects the developmental process of senescence in plants. Vectors, transgenic plants, seeds, and host cells comprising heterologous VS-1 and AP-2 genes are also provided. Additionally provided are methods of altering nutrient allocation and composition in a plant using the VS-1 and AP-2 genes.

  19. Developmental Education Evaluation Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perry-Miller, Mitzi; And Others

    A developmental education evaluation model designed to be used at a multi-unit urban community college is described. The purpose of the design was to determine the cost effectiveness/worth of programs in order to initiate self-improvement. A needs assessment was conducted by interviewing and taping the responses of students, faculty, staff, and…

  20. Improvement potential of a real geothermal power plant using advanced exergy analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gökgedik, Harun; Yürüsoy, Muhammet; Keçebaş, Ali

    2016-01-01

    The main purpose of this paper is to quantitatively evaluate thermodynamic performance of a geothermal power plant (GPP) from potential for improvement point of view. Thus, sources of inefficiency and irreversibilities can be determined through exergy analysis. The advanced exergy analysis is more appropriate to determine real potential for thermodynamic improvements of the system by splitting exergy destruction into unavoidable and avoidable portions. The performance critical components and the potential for exergy efficiency improvement of a GPP were determined by means of the advanced exergy analysis. This plant is the Bereket GPP in Denizli/Turkey as a current operating system. The results show that the avoidable portion of exergy destruction in all components except for the turbines is higher than the unavoidable value. Therefore, much can be made to lessen the irreversibilities for components of the Bereket GPP. The total exergy efficiency of the system is found to be 9.60%. Its efficiency can be increased up to 15.40% by making improvements in the overall components. Although the heat exchangers had lower exergy and modified exergy efficiencies, their exergy improvement potentials were high. Finally, in the plant, the old technology is believed to be one of the main reasons for low efficiencies. - Highlights: • Evaluation of potential for improvement of a GPP using advanced exergy analysis. • Efficiency can be increased up to 15.40% by making improvements in the components. • Heat exchangers are the highest avoidable values, making them the least efficient components in plant. • The main reasons for low efficiencies are believed to be the old technology.

  1. Improvement of communications in nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Depigny, C.; Ghertman, F.; Lestien, A.

    1986-01-01

    Since 1983, Electricite de France (EDF) has been engaged in a major project to improve nuclear power plant communications. This project was launched following a series of incidents in which inappropriate communications practices and equipment were shown to be an aggravating, or in some cases, the determining factor. This paper presents the program established by EDF to resolve communications problems in its nuclear power stations

  2. Genetic plant improvement and climate changes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Magno Antonio Patto Ramalho

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available The consequences of climate change for the agribusiness in Brazil have been widely debated. The issue isdiscussed in this publication to show the expected problems, particularly those associated with increases in temperature andwater stress. It is emphasized that the genetic improvement of plants, based on the experience in the past, has much tocontribute to mitigate these problems. To invest in the breeding of new cultivars, selected under stress conditions, is certainlythe best possible strategy for agriculture to cope with changes caused by climate alterations.

  3. Overexpression of monoubiquitin improves photosynthesis in transgenic tobacco plants following high temperature stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tian, Fengxia; Gong, Jiangfeng; Zhang, Jin; Feng, Yanan; Wang, Guokun; Guo, Qifang; Wang, Wei

    2014-09-01

    The ubiquitin/26S proteasome system (Ub/26S) is implicated in abiotic stress responses in plants. In this paper, transgenic tobacco plants overexpressing Ta-Ub2 from wheat were used to study the functions of Ub in the improvement of photosynthesis under high temperature (45°C) stress. We observed higher levels of Ub conjugates in transgenic plants under high temperature stress conditions compared to wild type (WT) as a result of the constitutive overexpression of Ta-Ub2, suggesting increased protein degradation by the 26S proteasome system under high temperature stress. Overexpressing Ub increased the photosynthetic rate (Pn) of transgenic tobacco plants, consistent with the improved ATPase activity in the thylakoid membrane and enhanced efficiency of PSII photochemistry. The higher D1 protein levels following high temperature stress in transgenic plants than WT were also observed. These findings imply that Ub may be involved in tolerance of photosynthesis to high temperature stress in plants. Compared with WT, the transgenic plants showed lower protein carbonylation and malondialdehyde (MDA) levels, less reactive oxygen species (ROS) accumulation, but higher antioxidant enzyme activity under high temperature stress. These findings suggest that the improved antioxidant capacity of transgenic plants may be one of the most important mechanisms underlying Ub-regulated high temperature tolerance. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Improving the environmental sustainability of a waste processing plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Turner, Tom; Watson, Stuart

    2013-01-01

    This paper describes how the level of environmental sustainability at the Solid Waste Processing plant at Research Sites Restoration Ltd (RSRL) Harwell was measured and improved. It provides reasons to improve environmental performance in an organisation, states best practice on how improvement should be conducted, and gives first-hand experience on how changes were implemented. In this paper sustainability is defined as 'meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs'. A baseline for environmental sustainability was created, by looking at multiple attributes. From this, a matrix was created to show how the baseline environmental performance compared to best practice, and a gap analysis was performed. Results from this analysis showed areas for potential systematic improvement, and actions were created. Nearly all actions were implemented within one year, and environmental sustainability improved significantly. Most improvements cost no money to implement, and the few that did had to pass criteria in a business case. Results from a company-wide survey showed that the vast majority of employees felt that environmental issues were important, and that they were willing to help improve performance. Environmental awareness training was given to everyone in the department, and individuals were given measurable improvement targets. A focus group was set up and met regularly to agree improvements and monitor results. Environmental performance was publicised regularly to highlight successes and seek further engagement and improvement. Improvement ideas were encouraged and managed in a transparent way which showed clear prioritisation and accountability. The culture of environmental improvement changed visibly and results at the end of the first year showed that electricity consumption had reduced by 12.5%, and gas consumption had reduced by 7.3%. In less than two years over UK Pound 60,000 was saved

  5. Improving the environmental sustainability of a waste processing plant

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Turner, Tom [AREVA RMC, Abingdon, Oxfordshire (United Kingdom); Watson, Stuart [RSRL, Harwell, Oxfordshire (United Kingdom)

    2013-07-01

    This paper describes how the level of environmental sustainability at the Solid Waste Processing plant at Research Sites Restoration Ltd (RSRL) Harwell was measured and improved. It provides reasons to improve environmental performance in an organisation, states best practice on how improvement should be conducted, and gives first-hand experience on how changes were implemented. In this paper sustainability is defined as 'meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs'. A baseline for environmental sustainability was created, by looking at multiple attributes. From this, a matrix was created to show how the baseline environmental performance compared to best practice, and a gap analysis was performed. Results from this analysis showed areas for potential systematic improvement, and actions were created. Nearly all actions were implemented within one year, and environmental sustainability improved significantly. Most improvements cost no money to implement, and the few that did had to pass criteria in a business case. Results from a company-wide survey showed that the vast majority of employees felt that environmental issues were important, and that they were willing to help improve performance. Environmental awareness training was given to everyone in the department, and individuals were given measurable improvement targets. A focus group was set up and met regularly to agree improvements and monitor results. Environmental performance was publicised regularly to highlight successes and seek further engagement and improvement. Improvement ideas were encouraged and managed in a transparent way which showed clear prioritisation and accountability. The culture of environmental improvement changed visibly and results at the end of the first year showed that electricity consumption had reduced by 12.5%, and gas consumption had reduced by 7.3%. In less than two years over UK Pound 60,000 was saved

  6. Strigolactones, a novel carotenoid-derived plant hormone

    KAUST Repository

    Al-Babili, Salim; Bouwmeester, Harro J.

    2015-01-01

    Strigolactones (SLs) are carotenoid-derived plant hormones and signaling molecules. When released into the soil, SLs indicate the presence of a host to symbiotic fungi and root parasitic plants. In planta, they regulate several developmental

  7. Developmental Screening Disparities for Languages Other than English and Spanish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knuti Rodrigues, Kristine; Hambidge, Simon J; Dickinson, Miriam; Richardson, Douglas B; Davidson, Arthur J

    2016-01-01

    Limited English proficiency (LEP) is a known barrier to preventive care. Children from families with LEP face socioeconomic circumstances associated with increased odds of developmental delays and decreased participation in early care and education programs. Little is known about developmental surveillance and screening for children from families who speak languages other than English and Spanish. We sought to compare developmental surveillance and screening at well-child visits (WCVs) by preferred parental language. Using a retrospective cohort (n = 15,320) of children aged 8 to 40 months with ≥2 WCVs from January 1, 2006, to July 1, 2010, in a community health system, 450 children from 3 language groups (150 English, 150 Spanish, and 150 non-English, non-Spanish) were randomly selected. Chart review assessed 2 primary outcomes, developmental surveillance at 100% of WCVs and screened with a standardized developmental screening tool, and also determined whether children were referred for diagnostic developmental evaluation. Bivariate and multiple logistic regression analyses were conducted. Compared to the English-speaking group, the non-English, non-Spanish group had lower odds of receiving developmental surveillance at 100% of WCVs (odds ratio, 0.3; 95% confidence interval, 0.2, 0.5) and of being screened with a standardized developmental screening tool (odds ratio, 0.1; 95% confidence interval, 0.1, 0.2). There were no differences between the English- and Spanish-speaking groups. Though underpowered, no differences were found for referral. Improved developmental surveillance and screening are needed for children from families who speak languages other than English and Spanish. Lack of statistically significant differences between English- and Spanish-speaking groups suggests that improved translation and interpretation resources may decrease disparities. Copyright © 2016 Academic Pediatric Association. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Improving plant bioaccumulation science through consistent reporting of experimental data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fantke, Peter; Arnot, Jon A; Doucette, William J

    2016-10-01

    Experimental data and models for plant bioaccumulation of organic contaminants play a crucial role for assessing the potential human and ecological risks associated with chemical use. Plants are receptor organisms and direct or indirect vectors for chemical exposures to all other organisms. As new experimental data are generated they are used to improve our understanding of plant-chemical interactions that in turn allows for the development of better scientific knowledge and conceptual and predictive models. The interrelationship between experimental data and model development is an ongoing, never-ending process needed to advance our ability to provide reliable quality information that can be used in various contexts including regulatory risk assessment. However, relatively few standard experimental protocols for generating plant bioaccumulation data are currently available and because of inconsistent data collection and reporting requirements, the information generated is often less useful than it could be for direct applications in chemical assessments and for model development and refinement. We review existing testing guidelines, common data reporting practices, and provide recommendations for revising testing guidelines and reporting requirements to improve bioaccumulation knowledge and models. This analysis provides a list of experimental parameters that will help to develop high quality datasets and support modeling tools for assessing bioaccumulation of organic chemicals in plants and ultimately addressing uncertainty in ecological and human health risk assessments. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Eco-Evo-Devo: developmental symbiosis and developmental plasticity as evolutionary agents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilbert, Scott F; Bosch, Thomas C G; Ledón-Rettig, Cristina

    2015-10-01

    The integration of research from developmental biology and ecology into evolutionary theory has given rise to a relatively new field, ecological evolutionary developmental biology (Eco-Evo-Devo). This field integrates and organizes concepts such as developmental symbiosis, developmental plasticity, genetic accommodation, extragenic inheritance and niche construction. This Review highlights the roles that developmental symbiosis and developmental plasticity have in evolution. Developmental symbiosis can generate particular organs, can produce selectable genetic variation for the entire animal, can provide mechanisms for reproductive isolation, and may have facilitated evolutionary transitions. Developmental plasticity is crucial for generating novel phenotypes, facilitating evolutionary transitions and altered ecosystem dynamics, and promoting adaptive variation through genetic accommodation and niche construction. In emphasizing such non-genomic mechanisms of selectable and heritable variation, Eco-Evo-Devo presents a new layer of evolutionary synthesis.

  10. Efficiency improvement of thermal coal power plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hourfar, D. [VEBA Kraftwerke Ruhr Ag, Gelsenkirchen (Germany)

    1996-12-31

    The discussion concerning an increase of the natural greenhouse effect by anthropogenic changes in the composition of the atmosphere has increased over the past years. The greenhouse effect has become an issue of worldwide debate. Carbon dioxide is the most serious emission of the greenhouse gases. Fossil-fired power plants have in the recent past been responsible for almost 30 % of the total CO{sub 2} emissions in Germany. Against this background the paper will describe the present development of CO{sub 2} emissions from power stations and present actual and future opportunities for CO{sub 2} reduction. The significance attached to hard coal as one of today`s prime sources of energy with the largest reserves worldwide, and, consequently, its importance for use in power generation, is certain to increase in the years to come. The further development of conventional power plant technology, therefore, is vital, and must be carried out on the basis of proven operational experience. The main incentive behind the development work completed so far has been, and continues to be, the achievement of cost reductions and environmental benefits in the generation of electricity by increasing plant efficiency, and this means that, in both the short and the long term, power plants with improved conventional technology will be used for environmentally acceptable coal-fired power generation.

  11. Availability improvement factors at Taipower's nuclear power plant system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chen, J.H.

    1985-01-01

    Sufficient electricity to meet the needs of a growing industrial economy, is one of the most important factors in the total economic development of a nation. Currently, nuclear power is considered one of the most economical and available sources of energy. To keep pace with Taiwan's rapid economic development, while also observing our government's policy of diversifying the requirements for imported forms of energy, Taiwan Power Company has embarked upon an ambitious of nuclear power plant construction. This paper discusses the improvement of Taiwan's nuclear power plants. At the present time, Taipower has completed three nuclear power plants. Two of these are located in northern Taiwan, along the East China Sea, while the third is on the southern tip of Taiwan, bordering the South China Sea. These three plants, each with two nuclear generating units, comprise a total nuclear generating capacity of 5144 MWe

  12. Katanin: A Sword Cutting Microtubules for Cellular, Developmental, and Physiological Purposes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ivan Luptovčiak

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available KATANIN is a well-studied microtubule severing protein affecting microtubule organization and dynamic properties in higher plants. By regulating mitotic and cytokinetic and cortical microtubule arrays it is involved in the progression of cell division and cell division plane orientation. KATANIN is also involved in cell elongation and morphogenesis during plant growth. In this way KATANIN plays critical roles in diverse plant developmental processes including the development of pollen, embryo, seed, meristem, root, hypocotyl, cotyledon, leaf, shoot, and silique. KATANIN-dependent microtubule regulation seems to be under the control of plant hormones. This minireview provides an overview on available KATANIN mutants and discusses advances in our understanding of KATANIN biological roles in plants.

  13. Startup and operation of a plant-scale continuous glass melter for vitrification of Savannah River Plant simulated waste

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Willis, T.A.

    1980-01-01

    The reference process for disposal of radioactive waste from the Savannah River Plant is vitrification of the waste in borosilicate glass in a continuous glass melter. Design, startup, and operation of a plant-scale developmental melter system are discussed

  14. Transcription factors and plant response to drought stress: Current understanding and future directions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rohit Joshi

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Increasing vulnerability of plants to a variety of stresses such as drought, salt and extreme temperatures poses a global threat to sustained growth and productivity of major crops. Of these stresses, drought represents a considerable threat to plant growth and development. In view of this, developing staple food cultivars with improved drought tolerance emerges as the most sustainable solution towards improving crop productivity in a scenario of climate change. In parallel, unraveling the genetic architecture and the targeted identification of molecular networks using modern OMICS analyses, that can underpin drought tolerance mechanisms, is urgently required. Importantly, integrated studies intending to elucidate complex mechanisms can bridge the gap existing in our current knowledge about drought stress tolerance in plants. It is now well established that drought tolerance is regulated by several genes, including transcription factors (TFs that enable plants to withstand unfavorable conditions, and these remain potential genomic candidates for their wide application in crop breeding. These TFs represent the key molecular switches orchestrating the regulation of plant developmental processes in response to a variety of stresses. The current review aims to offer a deeper understanding of TFs engaged in regulating plant’s response under drought stress and to devise potential strategies to improve plant tolerance against drought.

  15. An Improved Setpoint Determination Methodology for the Plant Protection System Considering Beyond Design Basis Events

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lee, C.J.; Baik, K.I.; Baek, S.M.; Park, K.-M.; Lee, S.J.

    2013-06-01

    According to the nuclear regulations and industry standards, the trip setpoint and allowable value for the plant protection system have been determined by considering design basis events. In order to improve the safety of a nuclear power plant, an attempt has been made to develop an improved setpoint determination methodology for the plant protection system trip parameter considering not only a design basis event but also a beyond design basis event. The results of a quantitative evaluation performed for the Advanced Power Reactor 1400 nuclear power plant in Korea are presented herein. The results confirmed that the proposed methodology is able to improve the nuclear power plant's safety by determining more reasonable setpoints that can cover beyond design basis events. (authors)

  16. Nuclear power plant licensing: opportunities for improvement

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1977-06-01

    On April 20, 1977, the Commission directed that recently completed licensing actions be reviewed by the staff for the purpose of identifying ways to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of NRC nuclear power plant licensing activities. This report summarizes the results of a study undertaken by an internal ad hoc Study Group established in response to that directive. The Study Group limited its considerations to safety and environmental review activities. The background, scope, assumptions and objectives of the study are discussed. A prime assumption of this study was that improvements in the efficiency should not be permitted to reduce the current quality achieved in the licensing process. This consideration underlies the conclusions and recommendations of the study

  17. Improving Aquatic Plant Management in the California Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bubenheim, David L.; Potter, Chris

    2018-01-01

    Management of aquatic weeds in complex watersheds and river systems present many challenges to assessment, planning and implementation of management practices for floating and submerged aquatic invasive plants. The Delta Region Areawide Aquatic Weed Project (DRAAWP), a USDA sponsored area-wide project, is working to enhance planning, decision-making and operational efficiency in the California Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. Satellite and airborne remote sensing are used map (area coverage and biomass), direct operations, and assess management impacts on plant communities. Archived satellite records going are used to review results from previous climate and management events and aide in developing long-term strategies. Modeling at local and watershed scales provides insight into land-use effects on water quality. Plant growth models informed by remote sensing are being applied spatially across the Delta to balance location and type of aquatic plant, growth response to altered environments, phenology, environmental regulations, and economics in selection of management practices. Initial utilization of remote sensing tools developed for mapping of aquatic invasive weeds improved operational efficiency by focusing limited chemical use to strategic areas with high plant-control impact and incorporating mechanical harvesting when chemical use is restricted. These assessment methods provide a comprehensive and quantitative view of aquatic invasive plants communities in the California Delta, both spatial and temporal, informed by ecological understanding with the objective of improving management and assessment effectiveness.

  18. The basic planning for the environmental relationship of improved nuclear power plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Choi, Seungho; Jung, Hoonseok; Lee, Dongheup

    2003-01-01

    The Improved Nuclear Power Plant (INPP) which design has been emphasized on the safety, technology and environmental relationship is about to be realized after hard works of design improvements, largely changes made from existing PWR nuclear power plants for three years. It will undoubtedly play a leading role of nuclear power generation industry as a main electric power source and secure a place as a successful issue between development and environment throughout nation-wide understanding and support. (author)

  19. Developmental "roots" in mature biological knowledge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldberg, Robert F; Thompson-Schill, Sharon L

    2009-04-01

    Young children tend to claim that moving artifacts and nonliving natural kinds are alive, but neglect to ascribe life to plants. This research tested whether adults exhibit similar confusions when verifying life status in a speeded classification task. Experiment 1 showed that undergraduates encounter greater difficulty (reduced accuracy and increased response times) in determining life status for plants, relative to animals, and for natural and moving nonliving things, relative to artifacts and non-moving things. Experiment 2 replicated these effects in university biology professors. The professors showed a significantly reduced effect size for living things, as compared with the students, but still showed greater difficulty for plants than animals, even as no differences from the students were apparent in their responses to nonliving things. These results suggest that mature biological knowledge relies on a developmental foundation that is not radically overwritten or erased with the profound conceptual changes that accompany mastery of the domain.

  20. Audits and their effectiveness in improving plant performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Callen, L.J.

    1986-01-01

    For several years, the NRC's performance appraisal teams (PATs) have been assessing the effectiveness of the various audit programs established by operating nuclear power plants. A major focus of the PAT assessments is on the audit programs mandated by 10 CFR, technical specifications, industry codes and standards, and NRC operating license conditions. These audits are typically performed by a plant's quality assurance organization, and program oversight is often provided at the corporate level by a safety review committee. The scope of these audit programs is broad, typically including such functional areas as maintenance, operations, health physics, emergency preparedness, training, procurement, and security. For an audit program to be truly effective in improving plant performance beyond the minimum level established by regulatory requirements, the audits must first be effective in identifying deficiencies that go beyond minimum regulatory requirements. The PAT experience to date is that typical industry audit programs are not designed to identify these types of deficiencies

  1. Developing a Web-Based Developmental Feedback Program

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Douglas, Matthew

    2003-01-01

    Developmental feedback programs provide an opportunity to improve leadership practices by giving leaders feedback about their performance from a number of sources, This thesis expanded on Capt Doug Patton's pilot study (2002...

  2. The Genetic Architecture of Barley Plant Stature

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alqudah, Ahmad M.; Koppolu, Ravi; Wolde, Gizaw M.; Graner, Andreas; Schnurbusch, Thorsten

    2016-01-01

    Plant stature in temperate cereals is predominantly controlled by tillering and plant height as complex agronomic traits, representing important determinants of grain yield. This study was designed to reveal the genetic basis of tillering at five developmental stages and plant height at harvest in 218 worldwide spring barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) accessions under greenhouse conditions. The accessions were structured based on row-type classes [two- vs. six-rowed] and photoperiod response [photoperiod-sensitive (Ppd-H1) vs. reduced photoperiod sensitivity (ppd-H1)]. Phenotypic analyses of both factors revealed profound between group effects on tiller development. To further verify the row-type effect on the studied traits, Six-rowed spike 1 (vrs1) mutants and their two-rowed progenitors were examined for tiller number per plant and plant height. Here, wild-type (Vrs1) plants were significantly taller and had more tillers than mutants suggesting a negative pleiotropic effect of this row-type locus on both traits. Our genome-wide association scans further revealed highly significant associations, thereby establishing a link between the genetic control of row-type, heading time, tillering, and plant height. We further show that associations for tillering and plant height are co-localized with chromosomal segments harboring known plant stature-related phytohormone and sugar-related genes. This work demonstrates the feasibility of the GWAS approach for identifying putative candidate genes for improving plant architecture. PMID:27446200

  3. A basic plan for the environment-friendly aspects of improved Korean standard nuclear power plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jung, Hoon-Seok; Lee, Yong-Koo; Kim, Kwang-Ho

    2006-01-01

    The Improved Korean Standard Nuclear Power Plant (KSNP+) design has been made possible on the basis of engineering experiences and referring to an in-depth analysis of the design and construction of all the domestic nuclear power plants in operation. The KSNP+ is designed for improved safety, better economics, operability and maintainability by means of advanced technology expecting to demonstrate enhanced performance. The plant also has incorporated several environmentally friendly features through the restoration of excavated areas using an ecological approach, external coloring, figure of turbine generator building and landscaping around nuclear power plant. This is the first time that KOPEC has embarked on inducing environmentally friendly features into the basic plan. This is expected to mitigate the negative perceptions held by the residents in the vicinity of nuclear power plants and will contribute to a new and improved image of nuclear power plants. (authors)

  4. Hyperaccumulator straw improves the cadmium phytoextraction efficiency of emergent plant Nasturtium officinale.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Keqiang; Lin, Lijin; Wang, Jin; Xia, Hui; Liang, Dong; Wang, Xun; Liao, Ming'an; Wang, Li; Liu, Li; Chen, Cheng; Tang, Yi

    2017-08-01

    With the development of economy, the heavy metal contamination has become an increasingly serious problem, especially the cadmium (Cd) contamination. The emergent plant Nasturtium officinale R. Br. is a Cd-accumulator with low phytoremediation ability. To improve Cd phytoextraction efficiency of N. officinale, the straw from Cd-hyperaccumulator plants Youngia erythrocarpa, Galinsoga parviflora, Siegesbeckia orientalis, and Bidens pilosa was applied to Cd-contaminated soil and N. officinale was then planted; the study assessed the effect of hyperaccumulator straw on the growth and Cd accumulation of N. officinale. The results showed that application of hyperaccumulator species straws increased the biomass and photosynthetic pigment content and reduced the root/shoot ratio of N. officinale. All straw treatments significantly increased Cd content in roots, but significantly decreased Cd content in shoots of N. officinale. Applying hyperaccumulator straw significantly increased the total Cd accumulation in the roots, shoots, and whole plants of N. officinale. Therefore, application of straw from four hyperaccumulator species promoted the growth of N. officinale and improved the phytoextraction efficiency of N. officinale in Cd-contaminated paddy field soil; the straw of Y. erythrocarpa provided the most improvement.

  5. Feasibility studies to improve plant availability and reduce total installed cost in IGCC plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sullivan, Kevin [General Electric Company, Houston, TX (United States); Anasti, William [General Electric Company, Houston, TX (United States); Fang, Yichuan [General Electric Company, Houston, TX (United States); Subramanyan, Karthik [General Electric Company, Houston, TX (United States); Leininger, Tom [General Electric Company, Houston, TX (United States); Zemsky, Christine [General Electric Company, Houston, TX (United States)

    2015-03-30

    The main purpose of this project is to look at technologies and philosophies that would help reduce the costs of an Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle (IGCC) plant, increase its availability or do both. GE’s approach to this problem is to consider options in three different areas: 1) technology evaluations and development; 2) constructability approaches; and 3) design and operation methodologies. Five separate tasks were identified that fall under the three areas: Task 2 – Integrated Operations Philosophy; Task 3 – Slip Forming of IGCC Components; Task 4 – Modularization of IGCC Components; Task 5 – Fouling Removal; and Task 6 – Improved Slag Handling. Overall, this project produced results on many fronts. Some of the ideas could be utilized immediately by those seeking to build an IGCC plant in the near future. These include the considerations from the Integrated Operations Philosophy task and the different construction techniques of Slip Forming and Modularization (especially if the proposed site is in a remote location or has a lack of a skilled workforce). Other results include ideas for promising technologies that require further development and testing to realize their full potential and be available for commercial operation. In both areas GE considers this project to be a success in identifying areas outside the core IGCC plant systems that are ripe for cost reduction and ity improvement opportunities.

  6. Improved verification methods for safeguards verifications at enrichment plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lebrun, A.; Kane, S. C.; Bourva, L.; Poirier, S.; Loghin, N. E.; Langlands, D.

    2009-01-01

    The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has initiated a coordinated research and development programme to improve its verification methods and equipment applicable to enrichment plants. The programme entails several individual projects to meet the objectives of the IAEA Safeguards Model Approach for Gas Centrifuge Enrichment Plants updated in 2006. Upgrades of verification methods to confirm the absence of HEU (highly enriched uranium) production have been initiated and, in particular, the Cascade Header Enrichment Monitor (CHEM) has been redesigned to reduce its weight and incorporate an electrically cooled germanium detector. Such detectors are also introduced to improve the attended verification of UF 6 cylinders for the verification of the material balance. Data sharing of authenticated operator weighing systems such as accountancy scales and process load cells is also investigated as a cost efficient and an effective safeguards measure combined with unannounced inspections, surveillance and non-destructive assay (NDA) measurement. (authors)

  7. Improved verification methods for safeguards verifications at enrichment plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lebrun, A.; Kane, S. C.; Bourva, L.; Poirier, S.; Loghin, N. E.; Langlands, D. [Department of Safeguards, International Atomic Energy Agency, Wagramer Strasse 5, A1400 Vienna (Austria)

    2009-07-01

    The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has initiated a coordinated research and development programme to improve its verification methods and equipment applicable to enrichment plants. The programme entails several individual projects to meet the objectives of the IAEA Safeguards Model Approach for Gas Centrifuge Enrichment Plants updated in 2006. Upgrades of verification methods to confirm the absence of HEU (highly enriched uranium) production have been initiated and, in particular, the Cascade Header Enrichment Monitor (CHEM) has been redesigned to reduce its weight and incorporate an electrically cooled germanium detector. Such detectors are also introduced to improve the attended verification of UF{sub 6} cylinders for the verification of the material balance. Data sharing of authenticated operator weighing systems such as accountancy scales and process load cells is also investigated as a cost efficient and an effective safeguards measure combined with unannounced inspections, surveillance and non-destructive assay (NDA) measurement. (authors)

  8. Developmental Advising for Marginalized Community College Students: An Action Research Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Terrica S.

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of this action research study was to understand, evaluate, and improve the developmental advising practices used at a Washington State community college. This action research study endeavored to strengthen the developmental advising model originally designed to support the college's marginalized students. Guiding questions for the…

  9. MSU-DOE Plant Research Laboratory

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1991-01-01

    This document is the compiled progress reports of research funded through the Michigan State University/Department of Energy Plant Research Laboratory. Fourteen reports are included, covering the molecular basis of plant/microbe symbiosis, cell wall biosynthesis and proteins, gene expression, stress responses, plant hormone biosynthesis, interactions between the nuclear and organelle genomes, sensory transduction and tropisms, intracellular sorting and trafficking, regulation of lipid metabolism, molecular basis of disease resistance and plant pathogenesis, developmental biology of Cyanobacteria, and hormonal involvement in environmental control of plant growth. 320 refs., 26 figs., 3 tabs. (MHB)

  10. Improving plant bioaccumulation science through consistent reporting of experimental data

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fantke, Peter; Arnot, Jon A.; Doucette, William J.

    2016-01-01

    Experimental data and models for plant bioaccumulation of organic contaminants play a crucial role for assessing the potential human and ecological risks associated with chemical use. Plants are receptor organisms and direct or indirect vectors for chemical exposures to all other organisms. As new...... experimental data are generated they are used to improve our understanding of plant-chemical interactions that in turn allows for the development of better scientific knowledge and conceptual and predictive models. The interrelationship between experimental data and model development is an ongoing, never......-ending process needed to advance our ability to provide reliable quality information that can be used in various contexts including regulatory risk assessment. However, relatively few standard experimental protocols for generating plant bioaccumulation data are currently available and because of inconsistent...

  11. Evolution of the bHLH genes involved in stomatal development: implications for the expansion of developmental complexity of stomata in land plants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jin-Hua Ran

    Full Text Available Stomata play significant roles in plant evolution. A trio of closely related basic Helix-Loop-Helix (bHLH subgroup Ia genes, SPCH, MUTE and FAMA, mediate sequential steps of stomatal development, and their functions may be conserved in land plants. However, the evolutionary history of the putative SPCH/MUTE/FAMA genes is still greatly controversial, especially the phylogenetic positions of the bHLH Ia members from basal land plants. To better understand the evolutionary pattern and functional diversity of the bHLH genes involved in stomatal development, we made a comprehensive evolutionary analysis of the homologous genes from 54 species representing the major lineages of green plants. The phylogenetic analysis indicated: (1 All bHLH Ia genes from the two basal land plants Physcomitrella and Selaginella were closely related to the FAMA genes of seed plants; and (2 the gymnosperm 'SPCH' genes were sister to a clade comprising the angiosperm SPCH and MUTE genes, while the FAMA genes of gymnosperms and angiosperms had a sister relationship. The revealed phylogenetic relationships are also supported by the distribution of gene structures and previous functional studies. Therefore, we deduce that the function of FAMA might be ancestral in the bHLH Ia subgroup. In addition, the gymnosperm "SPCH" genes may represent an ancestral state and have a dual function of SPCH and MUTE, two genes that could have originated from a duplication event in the common ancestor of angiosperms. Moreover, in angiosperms, SPCHs have experienced more duplications and harbor more copies than MUTEs and FAMAs, which, together with variation of the stomatal development in the entry division, implies that SPCH might have contributed greatly to the diversity of stomatal development. Based on the above, we proposed a model for the correlation between the evolution of stomatal development and the genes involved in this developmental process in land plants.

  12. Millwater Pumping System Optimization Improves Efficiency and Saves Energy at an Automotive Glass Plant

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    2003-03-01

    In 2001, the Visteon automotive glass plant in Nashville, Tennessee renovated its millwater pumping system. This improvement saved the plant $280,000 annually in energy and operating costs, reduced annual energy consumption by 3.2 million kilowatt-hours, reduced water consumption, improved system performance, and reduced use of water treatment chemicals.

  13. Drosophila melanogaster "a potential model organism" for identification of pharmacological properties of plants/plant-derived components.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panchal, Komal; Tiwari, Anand K

    2017-05-01

    Plants/plant-derived components have been used from ancient times to treat/cure several human diseases. Plants and their parts possess several chemical components that play the vital role in the improvement of human health and their life expectancy. Allopathic medicines have been playing a key role in the treatment of several diseases. Though allopathic medicines provide fast relief, long time consumption cause serious health concerns such as hyperallergic reactions, liver damage, etc. So, the study of medicinal plants which rarely cause any side effect is very important to mankind. Plants contain many health benefit properties like antioxidant, anti-aging, neuroprotective, anti-genotoxic, anti-mutagenic and bioinsecticidal activity. Thus, identification of pharmacological properties of plants/plant-derived components are of utmost importance to be explored. Several model organisms have been used to identify the pharmacological properties of the different plants or active components therein and Drosophila is one of them. Drosophila melanogaster "fruit fly" is a well understood, high-throughput model organism being used more than 110 years to study the different biological aspects related to the development and diseases. Most of the developmental and cell signaling pathways and ∼75% human disease-related genes are conserved between human and Drosophila. Using Drosophila, one can easily analyze the pharmacological properties of plants/plant-derived components by performing several assays available with flies such as survivorship, locomotor, antioxidant, cell death, etc. The current review focuses on the potential of Drosophila melanogaster for the identification of medicinal/pharmacological properties associated with plants/plant-derived components. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  14. The continuous improvement system of nuclear power plant of Laguna Verde

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rivera C, A.

    2009-10-01

    This paper describes the continuous improvement system of nuclear power plant of Laguna Verde and the achievements in implementing the same and additionally two study cases are presents. In February 2009 is noteworthy because the World Association of Nuclear Operators we identified as a learning organization, qualification which shows that the continuous improvement system has matured, and this system will expose as I get to learn to capitalize on our own experiences and external experiences diffused by the nuclear industry. In 2007 the management of nuclear power plants integrates its improvement systems and calls it continuous improvement system and is presented in the same extensive report that won the National Quality Award. This system is made up of 5 subsystems operating individually and are also related 1) human performance; 2) referential comparison or benchmarking; 3) self-assessment; 4) corrective action and 5) external operating experience. Five subsystems that plan, generate, capture, manage, communicate and protect the knowledge generated during the processes execution of nuclear power plant of Laguna Verde, as well as from external sources. The target set in 2007 was to increase the intellectual capital to always give response to meeting the security requirements, but creating a higher value to quality, customer, environment protection and society. In brief each of them, highlighting the objective, expectations management, implementation and some benefits. At the end they will describe two study cases selected to illustrate these cases as the organization learns by their continuous improvement system. (Author)

  15. Abscisic acid induction of vacuolar H+-ATPase activity in mesembryanthemum crystallinum is developmentally regulated

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barkla; Vera-Estrella; Maldonado-Gama; Pantoja

    1999-07-01

    Abscisic acid (ABA) has been implicated as a key component in water-deficit-induced responses, including those triggered by drought, NaCl, and low- temperature stress. In this study a role for ABA in mediating the NaCl-stress-induced increases in tonoplast H+-translocating ATPase (V-ATPase) and Na+/H+ antiport activity in Mesembryanthemum crystallinum, leading to vacuolar Na+ sequestration, were investigated. NaCl or ABA treatment of adult M. crystallinum plants induced V-ATPase H+ transport activity, and when applied in combination, an additive effect on V-ATPase stimulation was observed. In contrast, treatment of juvenile plants with ABA did not induce V-ATPase activity, whereas NaCl treatment resulted in a similar response to that observed in adult plants. Na+/H+ antiport activity was induced in both juvenile and adult plants by NaCl, but ABA had no effect at either developmental stage. Results indicate that ABA-induced changes in V-ATPase activity are dependent on the plant reaching its adult phase, whereas NaCl-induced increases in V-ATPase and Na+/H+ antiport activity are independent of plant age. This suggests that ABA-induced V-ATPase activity may be linked to the stress-induced, developmentally programmed switch from C3 metabolism to Crassulacean acid metabolism in adult plants, whereas, vacuolar Na+ sequestration, mediated by the V-ATPase and Na+/H+ antiport, is regulated through ABA-independent pathways.

  16. 15. international conference on plant growth substances: Program -- Abstracts

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1995-12-31

    Since the 14th Conference in Amsterdam in 1991, progress in plant hormone research and developmental plant biology has been truly astonishing. The five ``classical`` plant hormones, auxin, gibberellin, cytokinin, ethylene, and abscisic acid, have been joined by a number of new signal molecules, e.g., systemin, jasmonic acid, salicylic acid, whose biosynthesis and functions are being understood in ever greater detail. Molecular genetics has opened new vistas in an understanding of transduction pathways that regulate developmental processes in response to hormonal and environmental signals. The program of the 15th Conference includes accounts of this progress and brings together scientists whose work focuses on physiological, biochemical, and chemical aspects of plant growth regulation. This volume contains the abstracts of papers presented at this conference.

  17. Developmental toxicology: adequacy of current methods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peters, P W

    1998-01-01

    Toxicology embraces several disciplines such as carcinogenicity, mutagenicity and reproductive toxicity. Reproductive toxicology is concerned with possible effects of substances on the reproductive process, i.e. on sexual organs and their functions, endocrine regulation, fertilization, transport of the fertilized ovum, implantation, and embryonic, fetal and postnatal development, until the end-differentiation of the organs is achieved. Reproductive toxicology is divided into areas related to male and female fertility, and developmental toxicology. Developmental toxicology can be further broken down into prenatal and postnatal toxicology. Today, much new information is available about the origins of developmental disorders resulting from chemical exposure. While these findings seem to promise important new developments in methodology and research, there is a danger of losing sight of the precepts and principles established in the light of existing knowledge. There is also a danger that we may fail to correct shortcomings in our existing procedures and practice. The aim of this presentation is to emphasize the importance of testing substances for their impact in advance of their use and to underline that we must use the best existing tools for carrying out risk assessments. Moreover, it needs to be stressed that there are many substances that are never assessed with respect to reproductive and developmental toxicity. Similarly, our programmes for post-marketing surveillance with respect to developmental toxicology are grossly inadequate. Our ability to identify risks to normal development and reproduction would be much improved, first if a number of straightforward precepts were always followed and second, if we had a clearer understanding of what we mean by risk and acceptable levels of risk in the context of development. Other aims of this paper are: to stress the complexity of the different stages of normal prenatal development; to note the principles that are

  18. Potential of in vitro mutation breeding for the improvement of vegetatively propagated crop plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Constantin, M.J.

    1984-01-01

    Significant progress has been realized in a number of technologies (e.g., protoplast cultures), collectively referred to as plant cell and tissue culture, within the last decade. In vitro culture technologies offer great potentials for the improvement of crop plants, both sexually and asexually propagated; however, to realize these potentials plant regeneration from selected cells must be achieved for the species of interest. Where whole plants have been regenerated from selected cells, the mutant trait was expressed in some but not in all cases, and the inheritance patterns included maternal, recessive, semi-dominant and dominant (epigenetic events have also been reported). Improved cultivars of sugarcane have been developed from in vitro culture selections. In vitro mutation breeding can be done using an array of physical and chemical mutagens that has been found to be effective in the treatment of seeds, pollen, vegetative plant parts and growing plants. Selection at the cell level for a range of mutant traits has been demonstrated; however, innovative selection schemes will have to be developed to select for agriculturally important traits such as date of maturity, resistance to lodging, height etc. An interdisciplinary team approach involving the combined use of in vitro culture technology, mutagenesis, and plant breeding/genetics offers the greatest probability for success in crop improvement. (author)

  19. Using Primary Care Parenting Interventions to Improve Outcomes in Children with Developmental Disabilities: A Case Report

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cassandra L. Tellegen

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Parenting is central to the health and well-being of children. Children with developmental disabilities have been shown to be at increased risk of developing emotional and behavioral problems. Parent training programs are effective interventions for improving child behavior and family functioning. This paper describes the outcomes of a brief 4-session parenting intervention (Primary Care Stepping Stones Triple P targeting compliance and cooperative play skills in an 8-year-old girl with Asperger’s disorder and ADHD combined type. The intervention was associated with decreases in child behavior problems, increases in parenting confidence, and decreases in dysfunctional parenting styles. This paper demonstrates that low-intensity parenting interventions can lead to significant improvements in child behavior and family functioning. Such brief interventions are cost effective, can be widely disseminated, and have been designed to be delivered within primary health care settings. Pediatricians can play a key role in identifying parents in need of assistance and in helping them access evidence-based parenting interventions.

  20. Innovative applications of technology for nuclear power plant productivity improvements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Naser, J. A.

    2012-01-01

    The nuclear power industry in several countries is concerned about the ability to maintain high plant performance levels due to aging and obsolescence, knowledge drain, fewer plant staff, and new requirements and commitments. Current plant operations are labor-intensive due to the vast number of operational and support activities required by commonly used technology in most plants. These concerns increase as plants extend their operating life. In addition, there is the goal to further improve performance while reducing human errors and increasingly focus on reducing operations and maintenance costs. New plants are expected to perform more productively than current plants. In order to achieve and increase high productivity, it is necessary to look at innovative applications of modern technologies and new concepts of operation. The Electric Power Research Inst. is exploring and demonstrating modern technologies that enable cost-effectively maintaining current performance levels and shifts to even higher performance levels, as well as provide tools for high performance in new plants. Several modern technologies being explored can provide multiple benefits for a wide range of applications. Examples of these technologies include simulation, visualization, automation, human cognitive engineering, and information and communications technologies. Some applications using modern technologies are described. (authors)

  1. A POSITION PAPER ON THE TEACHING OF READING, DEVELOPMENTAL AND CORRECTIVE.

    Science.gov (United States)

    HODDER, VELMA; AND OTHERS

    THE BASIC DEVELOPMENTAL READING PROGRAM IS REVIEWED AS A FOUNDATION FOR SOUND REMEDIAL OR CORRECTIVE PROGRAMS IN A GUIDE FOR THE IMPROVEMENT OF ELEMENTARY AND SECONDARY READING IN NEBRASKA SCHOOLS. THE PRESENTATION IS DEVELOPED AROUND FOUR TOPICS--(1) DEVELOPMENTAL READING (CHILDREN'S GROWTH CHARACTERISTICS AND NEEDS, INSTRUCTIONAL READING LEVEL,…

  2. Improvement of fire protection measures for nuclear power plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2013-08-15

    Improvements of fire protection measures for nuclear power plants were performed as following items: Development of fire hazard analysis method. Application of developed Fire Dynamic Tool to actual plants (FDT{sup S}), With regard to fire tests for the fire data acquisition, cable fire test and High Energy Arcing Faults (HEAF) fire test were performed. Implementation of fire hazard analysis code and simulation were performed as following items: Fire analysis codes FDS, SYLVIA, and CFAST were implemented in order to analyze the fire progression phenomena. Trial simulation of HEAF accident of Onagawa NPP in Tohoku earthquake. (author)

  3. Improvement of fire protection measures for nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2012-01-01

    Improvements of fire protection measures for nuclear power plants were performed as following items: Development of fire hazard analysis method. Application of developed Fire Dynamic tool to actual plants, With regard to fire tests for the fire data acquisition, cable fire test and oil fire test were performed. Implementation of fire hazard analysis code and simulation were performed as following items: Fire analysis codes FDS, SYLVIA, CFAST were implemented in order to analyze the fire progression phenomena, Trial simulation of fire hazard as Metal-Clad Switch Gear Fire of ONAGAWA NPP in Tohoku earthquake (HEAF accident). (author)

  4. Relations among motor, social, and cognitive skills in pre-kindergarten children with developmental disabilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Helyn; Carlson, Abby G; Curby, Timothy W; Winsler, Adam

    2016-01-01

    Despite the comorbidity between motor difficulties and certain disabilities, limited research has examined links between early motor, cognitive, and social skills in preschool-aged children with developmental disabilities. The present study examined the relative contributions of gross motor and fine motor skills to the prediction of improvements in children's cognitive and social skills among 2,027 pre-kindergarten children with developmental disabilities, including specific learning disorder, speech/language impairment, intellectual disability, and autism spectrum disorder. Results indicated that for pre-kindergarten children with developmental disabilities, fine motor skills, but not gross motor skills, were predictive of improvements in cognitive and social skills, even after controlling for demographic information and initial skill levels. Moreover, depending on the type of developmental disability, the pattern of prediction of gross motor and fine motor skills to improvements in children's cognitive and social skills differed. Implications are discussed. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Developmental changes in the metabolic network of snapdragon flowers.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joëlle K Muhlemann

    Full Text Available Evolutionary and reproductive success of angiosperms, the most diverse group of land plants, relies on visual and olfactory cues for pollinator attraction. Previous work has focused on elucidating the developmental regulation of pathways leading to the formation of pollinator-attracting secondary metabolites such as scent compounds and flower pigments. However, to date little is known about how flowers control their entire metabolic network to achieve the highly regulated production of metabolites attracting pollinators. Integrative analysis of transcripts and metabolites in snapdragon sepals and petals over flower development performed in this study revealed a profound developmental remodeling of gene expression and metabolite profiles in petals, but not in sepals. Genes up-regulated during petal development were enriched in functions related to secondary metabolism, fatty acid catabolism, and amino acid transport, whereas down-regulated genes were enriched in processes involved in cell growth, cell wall formation, and fatty acid biosynthesis. The levels of transcripts and metabolites in pathways leading to scent formation were coordinately up-regulated during petal development, implying transcriptional induction of metabolic pathways preceding scent formation. Developmental gene expression patterns in the pathways involved in scent production were different from those of glycolysis and the pentose phosphate pathway, highlighting distinct developmental regulation of secondary metabolism and primary metabolic pathways feeding into it.

  6. A Study on Nonconformance and Construction Method Improvement for Nuclear Power Plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Jong Yeob; Roh, Myung Sub

    2014-01-01

    Advanced power reactor was developed by domestic technology, and finally exported to abroad. In order to place the current nuclear power industrial base, construction has played a big role. Without magnificent construction technology, it would have been impossible to get a safe nuclear power plant on time and in budget. Construction industry occupies very large portion of the economy in South Korea and it has been a core of South Korea's economic growth. With a competitive construction industry and advanced nuclear power plant construction know-how, South Korea could provide safe and reliable nuclear power plants in domestic and world. However there are many repairs and number of corrective actions are in actual construction. Thus, this paper suggested the result of nonconformance and construction method improvement for nuclear power plant. Constructional engineering is a kind of science that has a variety of disciplines including structure, geology, mechanical equipment and other fields. Thus, the development of constructional engineering is closely associated with experience from failure and application advanced construction method. The recent experience in nuclear power plants construction has shown that those improved methods are fully applicable and can help shorten the construction schedule. The future of nuclear power plant construction seems to be more encouraged, even though it has many obstacles

  7. Use of audits and reviews to improve plant performance, INPO'S experience

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mc Coy, C.K.

    1986-01-01

    INPO's primary mission is to assist utilities in improving their nuclear plants performance. Consequently, the author has viewed utility audits and reviews as potential tools for improving plant performance. He has attempted to find examples where these tools are used effectively, and to find common elements of effective utility audit and review programs. One thing the author noted was that the words ''audit'' and ''review'' were not consistently used or understood. So to begin, he likes to stick to Webster's definitions in the context of nuclear power activities. First, Webster defines the verb audit as ''to examine with intent to verify.'' In this context this means to verify compliance with requirements. Second, Webster defines a review as ''a general survey'' or ''a critical evaluation.'' In this context this means an evaluation of an activity or program for effectiveness in accomplishing its intended purpose. INPO's evaluations are reviews, not audits, and they are intended to provide information to utility managers upon which they may make changes to improve performance. INPO does make ''recommendations'' based on effective practices seen at other plants, but the author insists that line management develop the corrective action. INPO provides follow-up at the next evaluation to ensure the corrective actions taken by management were effective. INPO bases most of its findings on observations of work and conditions in the plant as noted by knowledgeable personnel trained in observation techniques

  8. Cost benefit justification of nuclear plant reliability improvement

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    El-Sayed, M.A.H.; Abdelmonem, N.M.

    1986-01-01

    Nuclear power costs are evaluated on the bases of general ground rules (a) vary from time to time (b) vary from country to another (c) even vary from one reactor type to another. The main objective of an electric utility is to provide the electric energy to the different consummers at the lowest possible cost with reasonable reliability level. Rapid increase of the construction costs and fuel prices in recent years have stimulated a great deal of interest in improving the reliability and productivity of new and existing power plants. One of the most important areas is the improvement of the secondary steam loop and the reactor cooling system. The method for evaluating the reliability of steam loop and cooling system utilizes the cut-set technique. The developed method can be easily used to show to what extent the overall reliability of the nuclear plant is affected by the possible failures in the steam and cooling subsystem. The cost reliability trade-off analysis is used to evaluate alternative schemes in the design with a view towards meeting a high reliability goal. Based on historical or estimated failure and repair rate, the reliability of the alternate scheme can be calculated

  9. Modern Breeding Methods for Improving Protein Quality and Quantity in Plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dumanovic, J.; Ehrenberg, L. [Institute for the Application of Nuclear Energy in Agriculture, Veterinary Medicine and Forestry, Belgrade, Yugoslavia (Serbia)

    1968-07-01

    Against the background of the world's urgent need for increased protein production and for an improved quality of vegetable proteins, the ability of plant breeding to contribute to this need is discussed. With examples especially from maize and wheat, existing variations in protein content and protein composition are surveyed, together with the interdependence of these characteristics and their co-variation with the yield. It is shown that plant breeding has a great potential for improving the world's food situation. It is also shown that more rapid achievements are possible than is generally considered to be characteristic of plant-breeding techniques. Special emphasis is stressed on: (a) The capacity of mutation breeding, alone and in conjunction with other methods, to contribute to an increased production of high quality protein; (b) The necessity for the success of programmes whereby fast, cheap, and if possible non-destructive analytical procedures are developed to determine protein and amino acids; (c) The importance of the close collaboration of plant breeders with specialists in related subjects such as soil fertilization, physiology and nutrition, food technology, and biochemistry; (d) The importance of international co-operation and co-ordination. (author)

  10. An overview of the United States Department of Energy Plant Lifetime Improvement Program

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rosinski, S.T.; Clauss, J.M.; Harrison, D.L.

    2004-01-01

    Since 1985, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has been working with the nuclear industry and the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) to establish and demonstrate the option to extend the life of nuclear power plants through the renewal of operating licenses. This paper focuses primarily on DOE'S Plant Lifetime Improvement (PLIM) Program efforts to develop the technical criteria and bases for effective aging management and lifetime improvement for continued operation of nuclear power plants. This paper describes current projects to resolve generic technical issues, including degradation of long-lived components, reactor pressure vessel (RPV) embrittlement management approaches, and analytical methodologies to characterize RPV integrity. (author)

  11. Improvement of ALARA in Taiwan Nuclear Power Plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kao, H. M.; Chang, M.

    2006-01-01

    Full text: Full text: The ALARA(as low as reasonable achievable ) principle is a basic spirit of radiation safety culture and the most important element of a successful radiation safety program. In recent years, the ALARA principle and practices have been widely applied to the three operating nuclear power plants in Taiwan. Through the effective communication and fully cooperation between the authority and utility, the performance goals of improving radiation safety program have been set, and the implementation plans have been proposed and followed. Taking Chinshan nuclear power station as an example, in 2004, the occupational individual dose was 1.13mSv/ person in average,no one exceeded 20mSv ,and the collective dose was 1.03man-Sv/unit which achieved the best record of BWR plant in Taiwan. The radiation reduction approaches and tools adopted by the plants include removing radiation sources, setting radiation shieding, optimizing and controlling the schedule of radiation practices, considering the occupancy factors, and better administrative management to keep exposure ALARA will be discussed in this paper

  12. An overview of the US Department of Energy Plant Lifetime Improvement Program

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Moonka, A.K.; Harrison, D.L.

    1995-01-01

    This paper provides a brief summary of the U.S. Department of Energy's (USDOE's) cooperative effort with the nuclear industry to develop technology to manage the effects of material degradation in systems, structures and components (SSCs) that impact plant safety or can significantly improve plant performance/economics and to establish and demonstrate the license renewal process. Also included are efforts to reduce decontamination/decommission costs, and reduce the uncertainty in long-term service-life decision making. During 1995, the Plant Lifetime Improvement (PLIM) Program was renamed the Commercial Operating Light Water Reactor (COLWR) Program activities are focused on sustaining the LWR option for domestic electricity generation by supporting operation of existing LWRs as long as they are safe, efficient, and economical. The status of the key projects is discussed in this paper

  13. Male-mediated developmental toxicity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Diana Anderson

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Male-mediated developmental toxicity has been of concern for many years. The public became aware of male-mediated developmental toxicity in the early 1990s when it was reported that men working at Sellafield might be causing leukemia in their children. Human and animal studies have contributed to our current understanding of male-mediated effects. Animal studies in the 1980s and 1990s suggested that genetic damage after radiation and chemical exposure might be transmitted to offspring. With the increasing understanding that there is histone retention and modification, protamine incorporation into the chromatin and DNA methylation in mature sperm and that spermatozoal RNA transcripts can play important roles in the epigenetic state of sperm, heritable studies began to be viewed differently. Recent reports using molecular approaches have demonstrated that DNA damage can be transmitted to babies from smoking fathers, and expanded simple tandem repeats minisatellite mutations were found in the germline of fathers who were exposed to radiation from the Chernobyl nuclear power plant disaster. In epidemiological studies, it is possible to clarify whether damage is transmitted to the sons after exposure of the fathers. Paternally transmitted damage to the offspring is now recognized as a complex issue with genetic as well as epigenetic components.

  14. South Ukraine NPP: Safety improvements through Plant Computer upgrade

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brenman, O.; Chernyshov, M. A.; Denning, R. S.; Kolesov, S. A.; Balakan, H. H.; Bilyk, B. I.; Kuznetsov, V. I.; Trosman, G.

    2006-01-01

    This paper summarizes some results of the Plant Computer upgrade at the Units 2 and 3 of South Ukraine Nuclear Power Plant (NPP). A Plant Computer, which is also called the Computer Information System (CIS), is one of the key safety-related systems at VVER-1000 nuclear plants. The main function of the CIS is information support for the plant operators during normal and emergency operational modes. Before this upgrade, South Ukraine NPP operated out-of-date and obsolete systems. This upgrade project wax founded by the U.S. DOE in the framework of the International Nuclear Safety Program (INSP). The most efficient way to improve the quality and reliability of information provided to the plant operator is to upgrade the Human-System Interface (HSI), which is the Upper Level (UL) CIS. The upgrade of the CIS data-acquisition system (DAS), which is the Lower Level (LL) CIS, would have less effect on the unit safety. Generally speaking, the lifetime of the LL CIS is much higher than one of the UL CIS. Unlike Plant Computers at the Western-designed plants, the functionality of the WER-1000 CISs includes a control function (Centralized Protection Testing) and a number of the plant equipment monitoring functions, for example, Protection and Interlock Monitoring and Turbo-Generator Temperature Monitoring. The new system is consistent with a historical migration of the format by which information is presented to the operator away from the traditional graphic displays, for example, Piping and Instrument Diagrams (P and ID's), toward Integral Data displays. The cognitive approach to information presentation is currently limited by some licensing issues, but is adapted to a greater degree with each new system. The paper provides some lessons learned on the management of the international team. (authors)

  15. Germination and early plant development of ten plant species ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ten agronomic plant species were exposed to different concentrations of nano titanium dioxide (nTiO2) or nano cerium oxide (nCeO2) (0, 250, 500 and 1000 mg/L) to examine potential effects on germination and early seedling development. We modified a standard test protocol developed for soluble chemicals (OPPTS 850.4200) to determine if such an approach might be useful for screening engineered nanomaterials (ENMs) and whether there were differences in response across a range of commercially important plant species to two common metal oxide ENMs. Eight of 10 species responded to nTiO2, and 5 species responded to nCeO2. Overall, it appeared that early root growth may be a more sensitive indicator of potential effects from ENM exposure than germination. The observed effects did not always relate to the exposure concentration, indicating that mass-based concentration may not fully explain developmental effects of these two ENMs. The results suggest that nTiO2 and nCeO2 have different effects on early plant growth of agronomic species, which may alter the timing of specific developmental events during their life cycle. In addition, standard germination tests, which are commonly used for toxicity screening of new materials, may not detect the subtle but potentially more important changes associated with early growth and development in terrestrial plants. Engineered nanoparticles (ENMs) have been recognized as valuable components of new technologies and are current

  16. Idaho Chemical Processing Plant Process Efficiency improvements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Griebenow, B.

    1996-03-01

    In response to decreasing funding levels available to support activities at the Idaho Chemical Processing Plant (ICPP) and a desire to be cost competitive, the Department of Energy Idaho Operations Office (DOE-ID) and Lockheed Idaho Technologies Company have increased their emphasis on cost-saving measures. The ICPP Effectiveness Improvement Initiative involves many activities to improve cost effectiveness and competitiveness. This report documents the methodology and results of one of those cost cutting measures, the Process Efficiency Improvement Activity. The Process Efficiency Improvement Activity performed a systematic review of major work processes at the ICPP to increase productivity and to identify nonvalue-added requirements. A two-phase approach was selected for the activity to allow for near-term implementation of relatively easy process modifications in the first phase while obtaining long-term continuous improvement in the second phase and beyond. Phase I of the initiative included a concentrated review of processes that had a high potential for cost savings with the intent of realizing savings in Fiscal Year 1996 (FY-96.) Phase II consists of implementing long-term strategies too complex for Phase I implementation and evaluation of processes not targeted for Phase I review. The Phase II effort is targeted for realizing cost savings in FY-97 and beyond

  17. Next-generation sequencing approaches for improvement of lactic acid bacteria-fermented plant-based beverages

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jordyn Bergsveinson

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Plant-based beverages and milk alternatives produced from cereals and legumes have grown in popularity in recent years due to a range of consumer concerns over dairy products. These plant-based products can often have undesirable physiochemical properties related to flavour, texture, and nutrient availability and/or deficiencies. Lactic acid bacteria (LAB fermentation offers potential remediation for many of these issues, and allows consumers to retain their perception of the resultant products as natural and additive-free. Using next-generation sequencing (NGS or omics approaches to characterize LAB isolates to find those that will improve properties of plant-based beverages is the most direct way to product improvement. Although NGS/omics approaches have been extensively used for selection of LAB for use in the dairy industry, a comparable effort has not occurred for selecting LAB for fermenting plant raw substrates, save those used in producing wine and certain types of beer. Here we review the few and recent applications of NGS/omics to profile and improve LAB fermentation of various plant-based substrates for beverage production. We also identify specific issues in the production of various LAB fermented plant-based beverages that such NGS/omics applications have the power to resolve.

  18. I. DEVELOPMENTAL METHODOLOGY AS A CENTRAL SUBDISCIPLINE OF DEVELOPMENTAL SCIENCE.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Card, Noel A

    2017-06-01

    This first chapter introduces the main goals of the monograph and previews the remaining chapters. The goals of this monograph are to provide summaries of our current understanding of advanced developmental methodologies, provide information that can advance our understanding of human development, identify shortcomings in our understanding of developmental methodology, and serve as a flagpost for organizing developmental methodology as a subdiscipline within the broader field of developmental science. The remaining chapters in this monograph address issues in design (sampling and big data), longitudinal data analysis, and issues of replication and research accumulation. The final chapter describes the history of developmental methodology, considers how the previous chapters in this monograph fit within this subdiscipline, and offers recommendations for further advancement. © 2017 The Society for Research in Child Development, Inc.

  19. Tariff-based incentives for improving coal-power-plant efficiencies in India

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chikkatur, Ananth P.; Sagar, Ambuj D.; Abhyankar, Nikit; Sreekumar, N.

    2007-01-01

    Improving the efficiency of coal-based power plants plays an important role in improving the performance of India's power sector. It allows for increased consumer benefits through cost reduction, while enhancing energy security and helping reduce local and global pollution through more efficient coal use. A focus on supply-side efficiency also complements other ongoing efforts on end-use efficiency. The recent restructuring of the Indian electricity sector offers an important route to improving power plant efficiency, through regulatory mechanisms that allow for an independent tariff setting process for bulk purchases of electricity from generators. Current tariffs based on normative benchmarks for performance norms are hobbled by information asymmetry (where regulators do not have access to detailed performance data). Hence, we propose a new incentive scheme that gets around the asymmetry problem by setting performance benchmarks based on actual efficiency data, rather than on a normative basis. The scheme provides direct tariff-based incentives for efficiency improvements, while benefiting consumers by reducing electricity costs in the long run. This proposal might also be useful for regulators in other countries to incorporate similar incentives for efficiency improvement in power generation

  20. Possibilities for using plant extracts added to ruminant feed aimed at improving production results

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grdović Svetlana

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available The use of plant extracts with the objective of improving production results and the quality of food articles of animal origin is an area which is acquiring increasing scientific importance. Numerous investigations carried out so far on ruminants and other species of domestic animals have been aimed at examining specific bioactive matter of plants. The results of these investigations have demonstrated a positive influence on the production results. A large number of data indicate that plant extracts added to animal feed contribute to increasing overall productivity. Furthermore, plant extracts as additives in animal feed have a positive effect also on the health condition of the animals. A large number of plants have characteristics which potentially improve consumption, digestibility and conversion of food, and also growth. Examinations have been performed of the effects of different plant extracts on food consumption, wool growth, growth and composition of the trunk, milk production, reproductive parameters, agents for wool shearing, preventing bloat, methane production, as well as the influence of plants on curbing nematode infestations of ruminants. This work presents a review of scientific investigations of different plant species and their effects on the production characteristics of ruminants. .

  1. A method for systematic resource allocation for improved nuclear power plant performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Doboe, L.; Golay, M.; Todreas, N.; Li, F.

    2000-01-01

    An investigation was made on plant improvement investments in terms of the methods and criteria used in cooperation with the staffs of a group of nuclear power plants, aiming to understand better the methods used within US nuclear power plants for allocating investments. Cost analyses were being used the authors translated the process into a mathematical format. A spectrum of practices, ranging from use of informal power relationship-based processes to format benefit was found among different organizations. Cost-based processes structured to take into account a broad range of decision factors. Factors such as cost results, risk aversion and required uncertainty premiums were included in the treatment. Ultimately, competing investments can be ranked using the method presented in order of their return upon investment at an equivalent level of uncertainty. A method for ranking the attractiveness of nuclear power plant investments is presented which takes into account consistently factors of return upon investment, uncertainty and decision-maker risk aversion. Hopefully its use will result in improved decisions. (M.N.)

  2. A novel approach for studying programmed cell death in living plant tissues

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mark, Christina

    to traditional approaches. Future applications of this type of setup could be used for other types of plant tissues such as leaves or germinating embryos for studying the effects of e.g. biotic and abiotic stresses or for screening of compounds for biological effects. Due to the ease of use and many......Programmed cell death (PCD) is a highly regulated process in which cells are killed as part of developmental programmes or as defence mechanisms against pathogens, but the process is less well understood in plant cells compared to animal cells. Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are involved in PCD...... in plants, but the relationship between and mechanisms behind ROS and PCDhas not yet been fully elucidated due to the involvement of complex signalling networks. Elucidation of these mechanisms and signalling pathways will allow manipulation of cell death in plants, which could help to improve yield...

  3. Revealing plant cryptotypes: defining meaningful phenotypes among infinite traits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chitwood, Daniel H; Topp, Christopher N

    2015-04-01

    The plant phenotype is infinite. Plants vary morphologically and molecularly over developmental time, in response to the environment, and genetically. Exhaustive phenotyping remains not only out of reach, but is also the limiting factor to interpreting the wealth of genetic information currently available. Although phenotyping methods are always improving, an impasse remains: even if we could measure the entirety of phenotype, how would we interpret it? We propose the concept of cryptotype to describe latent, multivariate phenotypes that maximize the separation of a priori classes. Whether the infinite points comprising a leaf outline or shape descriptors defining root architecture, statistical methods to discern the quantitative essence of an organism will be required as we approach measuring the totality of phenotype. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Application of Advanced Technology to Improve Plant Performance in Nuclear Power Plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hashemian, H.M.

    2011-01-01

    Advances in computer technologies, signal processing, analytical modeling, and the advent of wireless sensors have provided the nuclear industry with ample means to automate and optimize maintenance activities and improve safety, efficiency, and availability, while reducing costs and radiation exposure to maintenance personnel. This paper provides a review of these developments and presents examples of their use in the nuclear power industry and the financial and safety benefits that they have produced. As the current generation of nuclear power plants have passed their mid-life, increased monitoring of their health is critical to their safe operation. This is especially true now that license renewal of nuclear power plants has accelerated, allowing some plants to operate up to 60 years or more. Furthermore, many utilities are maximizing their power output through uprating projects and retrofits. This puts additional demand and more stress on the plant equipment such as the instrumentation and control (I and C) systems and the reactor internal components making them more vulnerable to the effects of aging, degradation, and failure. In the meantime, the nuclear power industry is working to reduce generation costs by adopting condition-based maintenance strategies and automation of testing activities. These developments have stimulated great interest in on-line monitoring (OLM) technologies and new diagnostic and prognostic methods to anticipate, identify, and resolve equipment and process problems and ensure plant safety, efficiency, and immunity to accidents. The foundation for much of the required technologies has already been established through 40 years of research and development (R and D) efforts performed by numerous organizations, scientists, and engineers around the world including the author. This paper provides examples of these technologies and demonstrates how the gap between some of the more important R and D efforts and end users have been filled

  5. Improvement of QA/QC activities in the construction of nuclear power plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jinji Tomita; Shigetaka Tomaru

    1987-01-01

    Construction of commercial nuclear power plants in Japan started at around 1965. In this presentation are described quality assurance (QA) activities of a plant supplier who is a manufacturer of the key components as well. The QA activities until now are divided into several periods of the construction history in Japan. First term is 1960's when the QA activities are featured as the study and implementation through the construction of imported plants. Since then technologies and procedures of our own have been established and improved for the construction of high reliability plants. Our present QA activities are based on the active reflection of those lessons learned of past experiences. (author)

  6. Using Neural Progenitor Cells in High-Throughput Screens for Developmental Neurotoxicants: Triumphs and Tragedies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Current protocols for developmental neurotoxicity testing are insufficient to test thousands of commercial chemicals. Thus, development of highthroughput screens (HTS) to detect and prioritize chemicals that may cause developmental neurotoxicity is needed to improve protection of...

  7. Improving energy efficiency of an Olefin plant – A new approach

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tahouni, Nassim; Bagheri, Narges; Towfighi, Jafar; Hassan Panjeshahi, M.

    2013-01-01

    Highlights: • The retrofit of an Olefin plant is studied to improve the overall energy efficiency. • Three levels of retrofit and optimization of this process are suggested. • A simultaneous method is presented to optimize low-temperature separation processes. - Abstract: Low-temperature gas separation processes are the most important gas separation routes. There is a complex interaction between core process (separation columns), associated heat exchanger network and refrigeration cycles in sub ambient processes. The aim of this paper is performing a comprehensive retrofit study of an Olefin plant (as an industrial example) to improve the overall energy efficiency. In this regard, the effect of improving column operating parameters and refrigeration cycles are first evaluated separately. Then, column operating parameters and refrigeration cycles as well as heat exchanger network are optimized simultaneously using genetic algorithm or simulated annealing. Having compared all results, one can conclude that simultaneous optimization leads to higher efficiency of the overall system

  8. Prenatal developmental toxicity study with 7-hydroxymatairesinol potassium acetate (HMRlignan) in rats

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wolterbeek, A.P.M.; Roberts, A.; Korte, H.; Unkila, M.; Waalkens-Berendsen, D.H.

    2004-01-01

    Plant lignan 7-hydromatairesinol, a novel precursor of the mammalian lignan enterolactone was evaluated in a prenatal developmental toxicity study conducted in the Wistar rat. Mated female rats were fed diets containing 0, 0.25, 1, and 4% (w/w) of 7-hydroxymatairesinol in the form of potassium

  9. The role of physical activity in improving physical fitness in children with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collins, Kyla; Staples, Kerri

    2017-10-01

    One in three children in North America are considered overweight or obese. Children with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) are at an increased risk for obesity than their typically developing peers. Decreased physical activity (PA) and low physical fitness may be contributing factors to this rise in obesity. Because children with IDD are at an increased risk of diseases related to inactivity, it is important to improve health-related physical fitness to complete activities of daily living and improve health. The focus of this research is on improving the performance of physical fitness components through physical activity programming among a group of children with IDD, ages 7-12 years. The Brockport Physical Fitness Test was used assess levels of physical fitness of 35 children with IDD (25 boys, 10 girls) before and after participation in a 10-week program. The results of paired sampled t-tests showed participation in 15-h PA program can significantly increase aerobic capacity and muscular strength and endurance in children with IDD. This study is aimed at understanding the role of PA in helping children with IDD to develop the fitness capacities essential to participation in a wide variety of activities. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Developmental Peculiarities and Seed-Borne Endophytes in Quinoa: Omnipresent, Robust Bacilli Contribute to Plant Fitness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pitzschke, Andrea

    2016-01-01

    Among potential climate change-adapted crops for future agriculture, quinoa (Chenopodium quinoa), a facultative halophyte plant with exceptional nutritional properties, stands out as a prime candidate. This work examined how quinoa deals with extreme situations during seed rehydration. Quinoa distinguishes itself from other plants in multiple ways. It germinates within minutes, even under extremely hostile conditions. Broken seeds/split embryos are able to regenerate. Furthermore, quinoa seedlings are resurrection-competent. These peculiarities became in part explainable upon discovery of seed-borne microorganisms. 100% of quinoa seeds, from different sources, are inhabited by diverse members of the genus Bacillus. These endophytes are motile and reside in all seedling organs, indicating vertical transmission. Owing to their high catalase activities and superoxide contents the bacteria potentially manipulate the host’s redox status. Superoxide-driven cell expansion enables quinoa to overcome a critical period in development, seedling establishment. Quinoa’s immediate confrontation with “foreign” reactive oxygen species and bacterial elicitors likely induces a naturally primed state, enabling plants to withstand extreme situations. The endophytic bacteria, which are cultivable and highly robust themselves, have high potential for application in agriculture, food (amylase) and cosmetics (catalase) industry. This work also discusses the potential of transferring quinoa’s microbiome to improve stress resistance in other plant species. PMID:26834724

  11. Synchronization of developmental processes and defense signaling by growth regulating transcription factors.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jinyi Liu

    Full Text Available Growth regulating factors (GRFs are a conserved class of transcription factor in seed plants. GRFs are involved in various aspects of tissue differentiation and organ development. The implication of GRFs in biotic stress response has also been recently reported, suggesting a role of these transcription factors in coordinating the interaction between developmental processes and defense dynamics. However, the molecular mechanisms by which GRFs mediate the overlaps between defense signaling and developmental pathways are elusive. Here, we report large scale identification of putative target candidates of Arabidopsis GRF1 and GRF3 by comparing mRNA profiles of the grf1/grf2/grf3 triple mutant and those of the transgenic plants overexpressing miR396-resistant version of GRF1 or GRF3. We identified 1,098 and 600 genes as putative targets of GRF1 and GRF3, respectively. Functional classification of the potential target candidates revealed that GRF1 and GRF3 contribute to the regulation of various biological processes associated with defense response and disease resistance. GRF1 and GRF3 participate specifically in the regulation of defense-related transcription factors, cell-wall modifications, cytokinin biosynthesis and signaling, and secondary metabolites accumulation. GRF1 and GRF3 seem to fine-tune the crosstalk between miRNA signaling networks by regulating the expression of several miRNA target genes. In addition, our data suggest that GRF1 and GRF3 may function as negative regulators of gene expression through their association with other transcription factors. Collectively, our data provide new insights into how GRF1 and GRF3 might coordinate the interactions between defense signaling and plant growth and developmental pathways.

  12. Action of ethylene, 1-methylcyclopropene and silver thiosulfate in two developmental stages of potted ornamental pepper(

    OpenAIRE

    Paula Cristina Carvalho Lima; Milena Maria Tomaz Oliveira; Wellington Souto Ribeiro; Lucas Cavalcante Costa; Fernando Luiz Finger

    2017-01-01

    The species of Capsicum genus have great genetic variability with enormous potential for marketing as ornamental potted plants. The exposure at ethylene induces various deleterious responses during plants life cycle, but there are few studies on how the ethylene affects early developmental stages of these ornamental plants. Thus, this study aimed to evaluate the effects of the application of ethylene and ethylene inhibitors, 1-methylcyclopropene (1-MCP) and silver thiosulphate (STS) in two ea...

  13. Final Report on the Operation and Maintenance Improvement Program for Concentrating Solar Power Plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cohen, Gilbert E.; Kearney, David W.; Kolb, Gregory J.

    1999-01-01

    This report describes the results of a six-year, $6.3 million project to reduce operation and maintenance (O ampersand M) costs at power plants employing concentrating solar power (CSP) technology. Sandia National Laboratories teamed with KJC Operating Company to implement the O ampersand M Improvement Program. O ampersand M technologies developed during the course of the program were demonstrated at the 150-MW Kramer Junction solar power park located in Boron, California. Improvements were made in the following areas: (a) efficiency of solar energy collection, (b) O ampersand M information management, (c) reliability of solar field flow loop hardware, (d) plant operating strategy, and (e) cost reduction associated with environmental issues. A 37% reduction in annual O ampersand M costs was achieved. Based on the lessons learned, an optimum solar- field O ampersand M plan for future CSP plants is presented. Parabolic trough solar technology is employed at Kramer Junction. However, many of the O ampersand M improvements described in the report are also applicable to CSP plants based on solar power tower or dish/engine concepts

  14. Final Report on the Operation and Maintenance Improvement Program for Concentrating Solar Power Plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cohen Gilbert E.; Kearney, David W.; Kolb, Gregory J.

    1999-06-01

    This report describes the results of a six-year, $6.3 million project to reduce operation and maintenance (O&M) costs at power plants employing concentrating solar power (CSP) technology. Sandia National Laboratories teamed with KJC Operating Company to implement the O&M Improvement Program. O&M technologies developed during the course of the program were demonstrated at the 150-MW Kramer Junction solar power park located in Boron, California. Improvements were made in the following areas: (a) efficiency of solar energy collection, (b) O&M information management, (c) reliability of solar field flow loop hardware, (d) plant operating strategy, and (e) cost reduction associated with environmental issues. A 37% reduction in annual O&M costs was achieved. Based on the lessons learned, an optimum solar- field O&M plan for future CSP plants is presented. Parabolic trough solar technology is employed at Kramer Junction. However, many of the O&M improvements described in the report are also applicable to CSP plants based on solar power tower or dish/engine concepts.

  15. Improvement of Off-site Dose Assessment Code for Operating Nuclear Power Plant

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kim, Juyub; Kim, Juyoul; Shin, Kwangyoung [FNC Technology Co. Ltd., Yongin (Korea, Republic of); You, Songjae; Moon, Jongyi [Korea Institute of Nuclear Safety, Daejeon (Korea, Republic of)

    2014-05-15

    XOQDOQ code which calculates atmospheric Dispersion factor was included into INDAC also. A research on the improvement of off-site dose assessment system for an operating nuclear power plant was performed by KINS in 2011. As a result, following improvements were derived: - Separation of dose assessment for new and existing facilities - Update of food ingestion data - Consideration of multi-unit operation and so on In order to reflect the results, INDAC is under modification. INDAC is an integrated dose assessment code for an operating nuclear power plant and consists of three main modules: XOQDOQ, GASDOS and LIQDOS. The modules are under modification in order to improve the accuracy of assessment and usability. Assessment points for multi-unit release can be calculated through the improved code and the method on dose assessment for multi-unit release has been modified, so that the dose assessment result of multi-unit site becomes more realistic by relieving excessive conservatism. Finally, as the accuracy of calculation modules has been improved, the reliability of dose assessment result has been strengthened.

  16. A New Approach of Modeling an Ultra-Super-Critical Power Plant for Performance Improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guolian Hou

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available A suitable model of coordinated control system (CCS with high accuracy and simple structure is essential for the design of advanced controllers which can improve the efficiency of the ultra-super-critical (USC power plant. Therefore, with the demand of plant performance improvement, an improved T-S fuzzy model identification approach is proposed in this paper. Firstly, the improved entropy cluster algorithm is applied to identify the premise parameters which can automatically determine the cluster numbers and initial cluster centers by introducing the concept of a decision-making constant and threshold. Then, the learning algorithm is used to modify the initial cluster center and a new structure of concluding part is discussed, the incremental data around the cluster center is used to identify the local linear model through a weighted recursive least-square algorithm. Finally, the proposed approach is employed to model the CCS of a 1000 MW USC one-through boiler power plant by using on-site measured data. Simulation results show that the T-S fuzzy model built in this paper is accurate enough to reflect the dynamic performance of CCS and can be treated as a foundation model for the overall optimizing control of the USC power plant.

  17. NIDCAP and developmental care

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dominique Haumont

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Perinatal mortality in very low birth weight infants has dramatically decreased during the last decades. However, 15-25% of these infants will show neurodevelopmental impairment later on. The aim of implementing early developmental care (EDC, emerged as a new field in neonatology, is to create an intervention program designed to provide support for optimal neurobehavioral development during this highly vulnerable period of brain growth. The theoretical framework, which underlies the approach, is supported by research in different scientific fields, including neuroscience, psychology, medicine and nursing. EDC utilizes a range of medical and nursing interventions that aim to decrease the stress of preterm neonates in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs. The Neonatal Individualized Developmental Care Assessment Program (NIDCAP is an integrated and holistic form of family-centered developmental care. Changing the traditional NICU towards an EDC-NICU includes training nursing and medical staff, investing in their quality and most importantly keeping parents in proximity to the infants. The new challenge of modern neonatology is to restore the mother-infant dyad applying “couplet care” starting at birth until discharge. Most of the European NICUs apply some elements of EDC, but it is more consistent in northern Europe. The development of NIDCAP training centers in Europe demonstrates the evolution of care. It is likely that future research and intervention programs will optimize our practices. Developmental care could prove to be an important recent step in improving outcome in extremely preterm neonates. Proceedings of the 10th International Workshop on Neonatology · Cagliari (Italy · October 22nd-25th, 2014 · The last ten years, the next ten years in Neonatology Guest Editors: Vassilios Fanos, Michele Mussap, Gavino Faa, Apostolos Papageorgiou

  18. 32 CFR 644.486 - Disposal of buildings and improvements constructed under emergency plant facilities (EPF) or...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 32 National Defense 4 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 true Disposal of buildings and improvements constructed under emergency plant facilities (EPF) or similar contracts. 644.486 Section 644.486 National... Disposal of buildings and improvements constructed under emergency plant facilities (EPF) or similar...

  19. Abscisic Acid Induction of Vacuolar H+-ATPase Activity in Mesembryanthemum crystallinum Is Developmentally Regulated1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barkla, Bronwyn J.; Vera-Estrella, Rosario; Maldonado-Gama, Minerva; Pantoja, Omar

    1999-01-01

    Abscisic acid (ABA) has been implicated as a key component in water-deficit-induced responses, including those triggered by drought, NaCl, and low- temperature stress. In this study a role for ABA in mediating the NaCl-stress-induced increases in tonoplast H+-translocating ATPase (V-ATPase) and Na+/H+ antiport activity in Mesembryanthemum crystallinum, leading to vacuolar Na+ sequestration, were investigated. NaCl or ABA treatment of adult M. crystallinum plants induced V-ATPase H+ transport activity, and when applied in combination, an additive effect on V-ATPase stimulation was observed. In contrast, treatment of juvenile plants with ABA did not induce V-ATPase activity, whereas NaCl treatment resulted in a similar response to that observed in adult plants. Na+/H+ antiport activity was induced in both juvenile and adult plants by NaCl, but ABA had no effect at either developmental stage. Results indicate that ABA-induced changes in V-ATPase activity are dependent on the plant reaching its adult phase, whereas NaCl-induced increases in V-ATPase and Na+/H+ antiport activity are independent of plant age. This suggests that ABA-induced V-ATPase activity may be linked to the stress-induced, developmentally programmed switch from C3 metabolism to Crassulacean acid metabolism in adult plants, whereas, vacuolar Na+ sequestration, mediated by the V-ATPase and Na+/H+ antiport, is regulated through ABA-independent pathways. PMID:10398716

  20. Plant Fructokinases: Evolutionary, Developmental, and Metabolic Aspects in Sink Tissues

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ofer Stein

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Sucrose, a glucose–fructose disaccharide, is the main sugar transported in the phloem of most plants and is the origin of most of the organic matter. Upon arrival in sink tissues, the sucrose must be cleaved by invertase or sucrose synthase. Both sucrose-cleaving enzymes yield free fructose, which must be phosphorylated by either fructokinase (FRK or hexokinase (HXK. The affinity of FRK to fructose is much higher than that of HXK, making FRKs central for fructose metabolism. An FRK gene family seems to exist in most, if not all plants and usually consists of several cytosolic FRKs and a single plastidic FRK. These genes are expressed mainly in sink tissues such as roots, stems, flowers, fruits, and seeds, with lower levels of expression often seen in leaves. Plant FRK enzymes vary in their biochemical properties such as affinity for fructose, inhibition by their substrate (i.e., fructose, and expression level in different tissues. This review describes recently revealed roles of plant FRKs in plant development, including the combined roles of the plastidic and cytosolic FRKs in vascular tissues and seed development.

  1. Improvement of operational efficiency based on fast startup plant concepts

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grumann, Ulrich; Kurz, Harald; Meinecke, Gero; Pickard, Andreas

    2010-09-15

    The power generation sector is currently confronted with new challenges relating to the conservation of dwindling fuel reserves. At the same time we must reduce CO2 emissions in order to counteract global warming. This paper shows that power plant operation, which employs shutdowns during periods of low load demand coupled with the optimization of startup procedures are a key to reducing CO2 emissions and to conserving resources. The startup technology developed by Siemens also offers grid support in the event of naturally occurring failures of renewable energy sources. Additionally, plant profitability is improved due to the resulting savings in fuel.

  2. A Review on Plants Used for Improvement of Sexual Performance and Virility

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nagendra Singh Chauhan

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The use of plant or plant-based products to stimulate sexual desire and to enhance performance and enjoyment is almost as old as the human race itself. The present paper reviews the active, natural principles, and crude extracts of plants, which have been useful in sexual disorders, have potential for improving sexual behaviour and performance, and are helpful in spermatogenesis and reproduction. Review of refereed journals and scientific literature available in electronic databases and traditional literature available in India was extensively performed. The work reviews correlation of the evidence with traditional claims, elucidation, and evaluation of a plausible concept governing the usage of plants as aphrodisiac in total. Phytoconstituents with known structures have been classified in appropriate chemical groups and the active crude extracts have been tabulated. Data on their pharmacological activity, mechanism of action, and toxicity are reported. The present review provides an overview of the herbs and their active molecule with claims for improvement of sexual behaviour. A number of herbal drugs have been validated for their effect on sexual behavior and fertility and can therefore serve as basis for the identification of new chemical leads useful in sexual and erectile dysfunction.

  3. Utilizing clad piping to improve process plant piping integrity, reliability, and operations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chakravarti, B.

    1996-01-01

    During the past four years carbon steel piping clad with type 304L (UNS S30403) stainless steel has been used to solve the flow accelerated corrosion (FAC) problem in nuclear power plants with exceptional success. The product is designed to allow ''like for like'' replacement of damaged carbon steel components where the carbon steel remains the pressure boundary and type 304L (UNS S30403) stainless steel the corrosion allowance. More than 3000 feet of piping and 500 fittings in sizes from 6 to 36-in. NPS have been installed in the extraction steam and other lines of these power plants to improve reliability, eliminate inspection program, reduce O and M costs and provide operational benefits. This concept of utilizing clad piping in solving various corrosion problems in industrial and process plants by conservatively selecting a high alloy material as cladding can provide similar, significant benefits in controlling corrosion problems, minimizing maintenance cost, improving operation and reliability to control performance and risks in a highly cost effective manner. This paper will present various material combinations and applications that appear ideally suited for use of the clad piping components in process plants

  4. PCI-24781 can improve in vitro and in vivo developmental capacity of pig somatic cell nuclear transfer embryos.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jin, Long; Zhu, Hai-Ying; Guo, Qing; Li, Xiao-Chen; Zhang, Yu-Chen; Zhang, Guang-Lei; Xing, Xiao-Xu; Xuan, Mei-Fu; Luo, Qi-Rong; Yin, Xi-Jun; Kang, Jin-Dan

    2016-09-01

    To examine the effect of PCI-24781 (abexinostat) on the blastocyst formation rate in pig somatic cell nuclear transferred (SCNT) embryos and acetylation levels of the histone H3 lysine 9 and histone H4 lysine 12. Treatment with 0.5 nM PCI-24781 for 6 h significantly improved the development of cloned embryos, in comparison to the control group (25.3 vs. 10.5 %, P PCI-24781 treatment led to elevated acetylation of H3K9 and H4K12. TUNEL assay and Hoechst 33342 staining revealed that the percentage of apoptotic cells in blastocysts was significantly lower in PCI-24781-treated SCNT embryos than in untreated embryos. Also, PCI-24781-treated embryos were transferred into three surrogate sows, one of whom became pregnant and two fetuses developed. PCI-24781 improves nuclear reprogramming and the developmental potential of pig SCNT embryos.

  5. Plant synthetic biology: a new platform for industrial biotechnology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fesenko, Elena; Edwards, Robert

    2014-05-01

    Thirty years after the production of the first generation of genetically modified plants we are now set to move into a new era of recombinant crop technology through the application of synthetic biology to engineer new and complex input and output traits. The use of synthetic biology technologies will represent more than incremental additions of transgenes, but rather the directed design of completely new metabolic pathways, physiological traits, and developmental control strategies. The need to enhance our ability to improve crops through new engineering capability is now increasingly pressing as we turn to plants not just for food, but as a source of renewable feedstocks for industry. These accelerating and diversifying demands for new output traits coincide with a need to reduce inputs and improve agricultural sustainability. Faced with such challenges, existing technologies will need to be supplemented with new and far-more-directed approaches to turn valuable resources more efficiently into usable agricultural products. While these objectives are challenging enough, the use of synthetic biology in crop improvement will face public acceptance issues as a legacy of genetically modified technologies in many countries. Here we review some of the potential benefits of adopting synthetic biology approaches in improving plant input and output traits for their use as industrial chemical feedstocks, as linked to the rapidly developing biorefining industry. Several promising technologies and biotechnological targets are identified along with some of the key regulatory and societal challenges in the safe and acceptable introduction of such technology.

  6. Realizing the benefits of improved plant monitoring in DCC upgrade applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stephens, K.L.

    2001-01-01

    The basic design of current CANDU control centres was established in the early 1970's and plants constructed since then have maintained the same basic design. Over the ensuing years AECL and utility owners have implemented an evolutionary approach to ensuing years AECL and utility owners have implemented an evolutionary approach to control centre improvements. This continues to be the approach as refurbishment and retrofits are being considered for aging CANDU plants. The Advanced Control Centre information System (ACCIS), AECL's plant display system product, can be applied in an evolutionary manner within the control centre. ACCIS provides users with the advanced information necessary to meet the key operational goals of safety and production. AECL is presently deploying ACCIS in the Qinshan Unit l and 2 Control Centres and the Training Simulator. In this installation ACCIS provides supplemental display capabilities together with an integrated DCC/ACCIS annunciation function. This solution provides a working example of how ACCIS could be applied in a retrofit situation and provides useful information on its utilization in future retrofits. This paper describes ACCIS functionality, particularly focusing on features and functions critical to providing improved monitoring. The applications of these functions are described within the context of the Qinshan Plant Display System (QPDS) installation. This information is then extended to its application within future retrofits. (author)

  7. Using systematic aging assessments to improve effectiveness of plant maintenance programs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Watson, P.; Yang, J.X.; Dam, R.F.; Nickerson, J.H.

    2003-01-01

    Nuclear plant equipment aging assessment studies provided by AECL include life assessments, condition assessments or systematic assessments of maintenance. AECL has developed several tools to apply the results of aging assessment studies to improve the effectiveness of actual plant maintenance programs. The Systematic Assessment of Maintenance and the SYSTMS tool generate maintenance tasks for a system. The System Maintenance Datastore tool assesses the maintenance resources on a system basis, and can thus quantify the savings realized by optimizing the maintenance program. Long term trends in condition-based maintenance due to component aging can be predicted, and resource savings due to optimum timing of component replacement or general plant refurbishment can be quantified. The System based Adaptive Maintenance Process ensures the maintenance program is continually updated to reflect the latest plant equipment condition and maintenance strategy information. (author)

  8. Onto-clust--a methodology for combining clustering analysis and ontological methods for identifying groups of comorbidities for developmental disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peleg, Mor; Asbeh, Nuaman; Kuflik, Tsvi; Schertz, Mitchell

    2009-02-01

    Children with developmental disorders usually exhibit multiple developmental problems (comorbidities). Hence, such diagnosis needs to revolve on developmental disorder groups. Our objective is to systematically identify developmental disorder groups and represent them in an ontology. We developed a methodology that combines two methods (1) a literature-based ontology that we created, which represents developmental disorders and potential developmental disorder groups, and (2) clustering for detecting comorbid developmental disorders in patient data. The ontology is used to interpret and improve clustering results and the clustering results are used to validate the ontology and suggest directions for its development. We evaluated our methodology by applying it to data of 1175 patients from a child development clinic. We demonstrated that the ontology improves clustering results, bringing them closer to an expert generated gold-standard. We have shown that our methodology successfully combines an ontology with a clustering method to support systematic identification and representation of developmental disorder groups.

  9. Mapping the developmental constraints on working memory span performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bayliss, Donna M; Jarrold, Christopher; Baddeley, Alan D; Gunn, Deborah M; Leigh, Eleanor

    2005-07-01

    This study investigated the constraints underlying developmental improvements in complex working memory span performance among 120 children of between 6 and 10 years of age. Independent measures of processing efficiency, storage capacity, rehearsal speed, and basic speed of processing were assessed to determine their contribution to age-related variance in complex span. Results showed that developmental improvements in complex span were driven by 2 age-related but separable factors: 1 associated with general speed of processing and 1 associated with storage ability. In addition, there was an age-related contribution shared between working memory, processing speed, and storage ability that was important for higher level cognition. These results pose a challenge for models of complex span performance that emphasize the importance of processing speed alone.

  10. Maternal and developmental toxicity of ayahuasca in Wistar rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliveira, Carolina Dizioli Rodrigues; Moreira, Camila Queiroz; de Sá, Lilian Rose Marques; Spinosa, Helenice de Souza; Yonamine, Mauricio

    2010-06-01

    Ayahuasca is a psychotropic plant beverage initially used by shamans throughout the Amazon region during traditional religious cult. In recent years, ayahuasca has also been used in ceremonies of a number of modern syncretic religious groups, including pregnant women. However, no documented study has been performed to evaluate the risk of developmental toxicity of ayahuasca. In the present work, maternal and developmental toxicity was evaluated in Wistar rats. Ayahuasca was administered to pregnant rats in three different doses [the equivalent typical dose (TD) administered to humans, five-fold TD and 10-fold TD] during the gestational period (6-20 days). Dams treated with the highest ayahuasca dose showed maternal toxicity with decrease of weight gain and food intake. Visceral fetal findings were observed in all treatment groups. Skeletal findings were observed in the intermediate- and high-dose groups. The fetuses deriving from the highest dose group also presented a decrease in body weight. From these results, it is possible to conclude that there is a risk of maternal and developmental toxicity following ayahuasca exposure and that the level of toxicity appears to be dose-dependent.

  11. Report on countermeasure to plant life management of the nuclear power plants at three electric power companies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1999-01-01

    Three nuclear power reactors of the Fukushima-1 nuclear power plant, the Mihama-1 power plant and the Tsuruga-1 power plant were investigated according to the estimation plan shown in the Fundamental Concept on Plant Life Management of Agency of Natural Resources and Energy, Ministry of International Trade and Industry on April, 1996. Their reports contained the technical evaluation against, the responsive items to and the future examinations of the plant life management. In special, in the responsive items, some items to be added to the present maintenance process and some technical developmental problems are described in details and concretely. (G.K.)

  12. Primary water chemistry improvement for radiation exposure reduction at Japanese PWR Plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nishizawa, Eiichi [Omiya Technical Institute, Saitama-ken (Japan)

    1995-03-01

    Radiation exposure during the refueling outages at Japanese Pressurized Water Reactor (PWR) Plants has been gradually decreased through continuous efforts keeping the radiation dose rates at relatively low level. The improvement of primary water chemistry in respect to reduction of the radiation sources appears as one of the most important contributions to the achieved results and can be classified by the plant operation conditions as follows

  13. Genetic Improvement of Switchgrass and Other Herbaceous Plants for Use as Biomass Fuel Feedstock

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vogel, K.P.

    2001-01-11

    It should be highly feasible to genetically modify the feedstock quality of switchgrass and other herbaceous plants using both conventional and molecular breeding techniques. Effectiveness of breeding to modify herbages of switchgrass and other perennial and annual herbaceous species has already been demonstrated. The use of molecular markers and transformation technology will greatly enhance the capability of breeders to modify the plant structure and cell walls of herbaceous plants. It will be necessary to monitor gene flow to remnant wild populations of plants and have strategies available to curtail gene flow if it becomes a potential problem. It also will be necessary to monitor plant survival and long-term productivity as affected by genetic changes that improve forage quality. Information on the conversion processes that will be used and the biomass characteristics that affect conversion efficiency and rate is absolutely essential as well as information on the relative economic value of specific traits. Because most forage or biomass quality characteristics are highly affected by plant maturity, it is suggested that plant material of specific maturity stages be used in research to determining desirable feedstock quality characteristics. Plant material could be collected at various stages of development from an array of environments and storage conditions that could be used in conversion research. The same plant material could be used to develop NIRS calibrations that could be used by breeders in their selection programs and also to develop criteria for a feedstock quality assessment program. Breeding for improved feedstock quality will likely affect the rate of improvement of biomass production per acre. If the same level of resources are used, multi-trait breeding simply reduces the selection pressure and hence the breeding progress that can be made for a single trait unless all the traits are highly correlated. Since desirable feedstock traits are likely

  14. Upper-Limb Rehabilitation With Adaptive Video Games for Preschool Children With Developmental Disabilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsieh, Hsieh-Chun; Lin, Hung-Yu; Chiu, Wen-Hsin; Meng, Ling Fu; Liu, Chun Kai

    2015-01-01

    This study used a novel device to make video games accessible to children with developmental disabilities (DD) by modifying the training software and interfaces to enhance motor training. In the pretest-posttest design, 20 children (13 boys, 7 girls; mean age=5.2 yr) with DD received adaptive upper-limb motor rehabilitation consisting of fifteen 30-min individual sessions 3 times per week for 5 wk. Improvement in Beery-Buktenica Developmental Test of Visual Motor Integration and Peabody Developmental Motor Scales, Second Edition, scores for children with DD indicated significant differences between pretest and posttest. The rehabilitation device modified for the needs of children with DD is effective in improving visual-motor performance of children with DD. Copyright © 2015 by the American Occupational Therapy Association, Inc.

  15. An overview of the United States Department of Energy plant lifetime improvement program

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rosinski, S.T.; Clauss, J.M.; Harrison, D.L.

    1993-01-01

    Today, 109 nuclear power plants provide over 20 percent of the electrical energy generated in the US. The operating license of the first of these plants will expire in the year 2000; one third of the operating licenses will expire by 2010 and the remaining plant licenses are scheduled to expire by 2033. The National Energy Strategy assumes that 70 percent of these plants will continue to operate beyond their current license expiration to assist in ensuring an adequate, diverse, and environmentally acceptable energy supply for economic growth. In order to preserve this energy resource in the US three major tasks must be successfully completed: (1) establishment of the regulations, technical standards, and procedures for the preparation and review of a license renewal application; (2) development, verification, and validation of the various technical criteria and bases for needed monitoring, refurbishment, or replacement of plant equipment; and (3) demonstration of the regulatory process. Since 1985, the US Department of Energy (DOE) has been working with the nuclear industry and the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) to establish and demonstrate the option to extend the life of nuclear power plants through the renewal of operating licenses. This paper focuses primarily on DOE's Plant Lifetime Improvement (PLIM) Program efforts to develop the technical criteria and bases for effective aging management and lifetime improvement for continued operation of nuclear power plants. This paper describes current projects to resolve generic technical issues, including degradation of long-lived components, reactor pressure vessel (RPV) embrittlement management approaches, and analytical methodologies to characterize RPV integrity

  16. Analysis on nuclear power plant control room system design and improvement based on human factor engineering

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gao Feng; Liu Yanzi; Sun Yongbin

    2014-01-01

    The design of nuclear power plant control room system is a process of improvement with the implementation of human factor engineering theory and guidance. The method of implementation human factor engineering principles into the nuclear power plant control room system design and improvement was discussed in this paper. It is recommended that comprehensive address should be done from control room system function, human machine interface, digital procedure, control room layout and environment design based on the human factor engineering theory and experience. The main issues which should be paid more attention during the control room system design and improvement also were addressed in this paper, and then advices and notices for the design and improvement of the nuclear power plant control room system were afforded. (authors)

  17. Improved expression of recombinant plant-made hEGF.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, David Rhys; Walmsley, Amanda Maree

    2014-11-01

    The yield of recombinant hEGF was increased approximately tenfold through a range of optimisations. Further, the recombinant protein was found to have biological activity comparable to commercial hEGF. Human epidermal growth factor (hEGF) is a powerful mitogen that can enhance the healing of a wide range of injuries, including burns, cuts, diabetic ulcers and gastric ulcers. However, despite its clinical value, hEGF is only consistently used for the treatment of chronic diabetic ulcers due to its high cost. In this study, hEGF was transiently expressed in Nicotiana benthamiana plants and targeted to the apoplast, ER and vacuole. Several other approaches were also included in a stepwise fashion to identify the optimal conditions for the expression of recombinant hEGF. Expression was found to be highest in the vacuole, while targeting hEGF to the ER caused a decrease in total soluble protein (TSP). Using a codon optimised sequence was found to increase vacuolar targeted hEGF yield by ~34 %, while it was unable to increase the yield of ER targeted hEGF. The use of the P19 silencing inhibitor was able to further increase expression by over threefold, and using 5-week-old plants significantly increased expression compared to 4- or 6-week-old-plants. The combined effect of these optimisations increased expression tenfold over the initial apoplast targeted construct to an average yield of 6.24 % of TSP. The plant-made hEGF was then shown to be equivalent to commercial E. coli derived hEGF in its ability to promote the proliferation of mouse keratinocytes. This study supports the potential for plants to be used for the commercial production of hEGF, and identifies a potential limitation for the further improvement of recombinant protein yields.

  18. Use of computer codes to improve nuclear power plant operation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Misak, J.; Polak, V.; Filo, J.; Gatas, J.

    1985-01-01

    For safety and economic reasons, the scope for carrying out experiments on operational nuclear power plants (NPPs) is very limited and any changes in technical equipment and operating parameters or conditions have to be supported by theoretical calculations. In the Nuclear Power Plant Scientific Research Institute (NIIAEhS), computer codes are systematically used to analyse actual operating events, assess safety aspects of changes in equipment and operating conditions, optimize the conditions, preparation and analysis of NPP startup trials and review and amend operating instructions. In addition, calculation codes are gradually being introduced into power plant computer systems to perform real time processing of the parameters being measured. The paper describes a number of specific examples of the use of calculation codes for the thermohydraulic analysis of operating and accident conditions aimed at improving the operation of WWER-440 units at the Jaslovske Bohunice V-1 and V-2 nuclear power plants. These examples confirm that computer calculations are an effective way of solving operating problems and of further increasing the level of safety and economic efficiency of NPP operation. (author)

  19. Thinking outside the boxes: Using current reading models to assess and treat developmental surface dyslexia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Law, Caroline; Cupples, Linda

    2017-03-01

    Improving the reading performance of children with developmental surface dyslexia has proved challenging, with limited generalisation of reading skills typically reported after intervention. The aim of this study was to provide tailored, theoretically motivated intervention to two children with developmental surface dyslexia. Our objectives were to improve their reading performance, and to evaluate the utility of current reading models in therapeutic practice. Detailed reading and cognitive profiles for two male children with developmental surface dyslexia were compared to the results obtained by age-matched control groups. The specific area of single-word reading difficulty for each child was identified within the dual route model (DRM) of reading, following which a theoretically motivated intervention programme was devised. Both children showed significant improvements in single-word reading ability after training, with generalisation effects observed for untrained words. However, the assessment and intervention results also differed for each child, reinforcing the view that the causes and consequences of developmental dyslexia, even within subtypes, are not homogeneous. Overall, the results of the interventions corresponded more closely with the DRM than other current reading models, in that real word reading improved in the absence of enhanced nonword reading for both children.

  20. Improving human reliability through better nuclear power plant system design. Progress report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Golay, M.W.

    1995-01-01

    The project on open-quotes Development of a Theory of the Dependence of Human Reliability upon System Designs as a Means of Improving Nuclear Power Plant Performanceclose quotes has been undertaken in order to address the important problem of human error in advanced nuclear power plant designs. Most of the creativity in formulating such concepts has focused upon improving the mechanical reliability of safety related plant systems. However, the lack of a mature theory has retarded similar progress in reducing the likely frequencies of human errors. The main design mechanism used to address this class of concerns has been to reduce or eliminate the human role in plant operations and accident response. The plan of work being pursued in this project is to perform a set of experiments involving human subject who are required to operate, diagnose and respond to changes in computer-simulated systems, relevant to those encountered in nuclear power plants. In the tests the systems are made to differ in complexity in a systematic manner. The computer program used to present the problems to be solved also records the response of the operator as it unfolds. Ultimately this computer is also to be used in compiling the results of the project. The work of this project is focused upon nuclear power plant applications. However, the persuasiveness of human errors in using all sorts of electromechanical machines gives it a much greater potential importance. Because of this we are attempting to pursue our work in a fashion permitting broad generalizations

  1. MANUFACTURING AND CONTINUOUS IMPROVEMENT PERFORMANCE LEVEL IN PLANTS OF MEXICO; A COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS AMONG LARGE AND MEDIUM SIZE PLANTS

    OpenAIRE

    Carlos Monge; Jesús Cruz

    2015-01-01

    A random and statistically significant sample of 40 medium (12) and large (28) manufacturing plants of Apodaca, Mexico were surveyed using a structured and validated questionnaire to investigate the level of implementation of lean manufacturing, sustainable manufacturing, continuous improvement and operational efficiency and environmental responsibility in them, it is important to mention it was found that performance in the mentioned philosophies, on the two categories of plants is low, howe...

  2. Reliability database development and plant performance improvement effort at Korea Hydro and Nuclear Power Co

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Oh, S. J.; Hwang, S. W.; Na, J. H.; Lim, H. S.

    2008-01-01

    Nuclear utilities in recent years have focused on improved plant performance and equipment reliability. In U.S., there is a movement toward process integration. Examples are INPO AP-913 equipment reliability program and the standard nuclear performance model developed by NEI. Synergistic effect from an integrated approach can be far greater than as compared to individual effects from each program. In Korea, PSA for all Korean NPPs (Nuclear Power Plants) has been completed. Plant performance monitoring and improvement is an important goal for KHNP (Korea Hydro and Nuclear Power Company) and a risk monitoring system called RIMS has been developed for all nuclear plants. KHNP is in the process of voluntarily implementing maintenance rule program similar to that in U.S. In the future, KHNP would like to expand the effort to equipment reliability program and to achieve highest equipment reliability and improved plant performance. For improving equipment reliability, the current trend is moving toward preventive/predictive maintenance from corrective maintenance. With the emphasis on preventive maintenance, the failure cause and operation history and environment are important. Hence, the development of accurate reliability database is necessary. Furthermore, the database should be updated regularly and maintained as a living program to reflect the current status of equipment reliability. This paper examines the development of reliability database system and its application of maintenance optimization or Risk Informed Application (RIA). (authors)

  3. Do plant-based amendments improve soil physiochemical and microbiological properties and plant growth in dryland ecosystems?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kneller, Tayla; Harris, Richard; Muñoz-Rojas, Miriam

    2017-04-01

    Background Land intensive practices including mining have contributed to the degradation of landscapes globally. Current challenges in post-mine restoration revolve around the use of substrates poor in organic materials (e.g. overburden and waste rock) and lack of original topsoil which may result in poor seedling recruitment and in later stages in soil nutrient deficiency, metal toxicity, decreased microbial activity and high salinity (Bateman et al., 2016; Muñoz-Rojas et al., 2016). Despite continuous efforts and advances we have not proportionally advanced our capability to successfully restore these landscapes following mining. Recent attempts to improve plant establishment in arid zone restoration programs have included the application of plant based amendments to soil profiles. This approach usually aims to accelerate soil reconstruction via improvement of soil aggregate stability and increase of soil organic carbon, and water holding capacity. Whilst a significant amount of recent research has focused on the application of such amendments, studies on the potential application of plant based materials to recover soil functionality and re-establish plant communities in post-mined landscapes in arid regions are limited. Here we will discuss our work investigating the application of a plant based amendment on soil substrates commonly used in post mining restoration in the Pilbara region, Western Australia. Methodology The study was conducted in a glasshouse facility where environmental conditions were continuously monitored. Using two growth materials (topsoil and waste rock) and a plant based amendment (dry biomass of the most common grass in the Pilbara, Triodia wiseana) five different treatments were tested. Treatments consisted of control soil treatments (topsoil, waste and a mixture of the former soil types (mixture)) and two amended soil treatments (waste amended and mixture amended). Additionally, three different vegetation communities were studies

  4. POWER-GEN '90 conference papers: Volume 7 (Fossil plant performance availability and improvement) and Volume 8 (Nuclear power issues)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon.

    1990-01-01

    This is book 4 of papers presented at the Third International Exhibition and Conference for the Power Generation Industries, December 4-6, 1990. This book contains Volume 7, Fossil Plant Performance Availability and Improvement, and Volume 8, Nuclear Power Issues. The topics of the papers include computer applications in plant operations and maintenance, managing aging plants, plant improvements, plant operations and maintenance, the future of nuclear power, achieving cost effective plant operation, managing nuclear plant aging and license renewal, and the factors affecting a decision to build a new nuclear plant

  5. Interdisciplinary Research and Training Program in the Plant Sciences

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wolk, C.P.

    1992-01-01

    Research on plants continued. Topics include: Molecular basis of symbiotic plant-microbe interations; enzymatic mechanisms and regulation of plant cell wall biosynthesis; molecular mechanisms that regulate the expression of genes in plants; resistance of plants to environmental stress; studies on hormone biosynthesis and action; plant cell wall proteins; interaction of nuclear and organelle genomes; sensor transduction in plants; molecular mechanisms of trafficking in the plant cell; regulation of lipid metabolism; molecular bases of plant disease resistance mechanisms; biochemical and molecular aspects of plant pathogenesis; developmental biology of nitrogen-fixing cyanobacteria; environmental control of plant development and its relation to plant hormones.

  6. Plan for research to improve the safety of light-water nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1978-03-01

    This is the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission's first annual report to Congress on recommendations for research on improving the safety of light-water nuclear power plants. Suggestions for reactor safety research were identified in, or received from, various sources, including the Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards, the NRC regulatory staff, and the consultants to the Research Review Group. After an initial screening to eliminate those not related to improved reactor safety, all the suggestions were consolidated into research topics. It is recommended that the following research projects be carried out: alternate containment concepts, especially vented containments; alternate decay heat removal concepts, especially add-on bunkered systems; alternate emergency core cooling concepts; improved in-plant accident response; and advanced seismic designs

  7. Technical improvement of ATE system of Ling'ao Nuclear Power Plant Phase II

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhu Xingbao; Xiong Jingchuan; Liang Qiaohong

    2009-01-01

    In order to solve the problem that the content of SO 4 2- in Steam Generator significantly increased beyond the criteria after the use of the condensate treatment (ATE) system in Daya Bay Nuclear Power Plant and Ling'ao Nuclear Power Plant Phase I, technical improvement have been conducted on the sizes of the fore cation bed and the mixed bed, water distributing devices, ion exchange resins and separation facility. The effectiveness for the ion exchange of the mixed bed is improved, the resolved substance of cation resin is decreased; it is more impossible for fragments and powder which would lead high SO 4 2- content in Steam Generator. Finally, the quality of the steam-water could be improved and ensured. (authors)

  8. Quantitative proteomics links metabolic pathways to specific developmental stages of the plant-pathogenic oomycete Phytophthora capsici.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pang, Zhili; Srivastava, Vaibhav; Liu, Xili; Bulone, Vincent

    2017-04-01

    The oomycete Phytophthora capsici is a plant pathogen responsible for important losses to vegetable production worldwide. Its asexual reproduction plays an important role in the rapid propagation and spread of the disease in the field. A global proteomics study was conducted to compare two key asexual life stages of P. capsici, i.e. the mycelium and cysts, to identify stage-specific biochemical processes. A total of 1200 proteins was identified using qualitative and quantitative proteomics. The transcript abundance of some of the enriched proteins was also analysed by quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction. Seventy-three proteins exhibited different levels of abundance between the mycelium and cysts. The proteins enriched in the mycelium are mainly associated with glycolysis, the tricarboxylic acid (or citric acid) cycle and the pentose phosphate pathway, providing the energy required for the biosynthesis of cellular building blocks and hyphal growth. In contrast, the proteins that are predominant in cysts are essentially involved in fatty acid degradation, suggesting that the early infection stage of the pathogen relies primarily on fatty acid degradation for energy production. The data provide a better understanding of P. capsici biology and suggest potential metabolic targets at the two different developmental stages for disease control. © 2016 BSPP AND JOHN WILEY & SONS LTD.

  9. Translocation and distribution of 14C-photoassimilates in strawberry plants varying in developmental stages of the inflorescence

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nishizawa, T.; Hori, Y.

    1988-01-01

    Translocation and distribution of photo-assimilates in strawberry plants were studied by pules-feeding 14CO2 at different developmental stages of inflorescence.1. After feeding the largest leaf at the fruit coloring stage, there were distinguished a rapid phase of about 6 hours and a subsequent slow phase in 14C export on the basis of 14C recovered. The current export was terminated about 16 hours after feeding with a percentage value of 50, about 90% of which was distributed in the berries.2. When all the leaves were fed, the total export to plant parts other than leaves increased from around 20% after feedings at and before flowering to 52% after feeding at the coloring stage of the 14C exported, about 40% was found in the roots and only 20% in the flowers after feedings at and before flowering. After later feedings, the distribution to the roots decreased and that to the berries increased gradually, reaching 86% at the coloring stage.3. Within an inflorescence, distribution to the receptacle increased from 70% after feeding at the budding stage to 89% after the coloring stage, although it decreased to 30% temporarily after feeding at the growing stage. Corresponding to this decrease, distribution to the achenes increased to 68% but soon decreased to 9% after feeding at the coloring stage.4. Within an inflorescence, there was recognized competition for 14C assimilates among flowers; this was especially true between the primary and tertiary flowers.5. In individual flowers, sink activity decreased, though temporarily, near flowering. This flowering of sink activity seemed to be intrinsic, and should be distinguished from lowering by competition (with other flowers)

  10. Expression and Chloroplast Targeting of Cholesterol Oxidase in Transgenic Tobacco Plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corbin, David R.; Grebenok, Robert J.; Ohnmeiss, Thomas E.; Greenplate, John T.; Purcell, John P.

    2001-01-01

    Cholesterol oxidase represents a novel type of insecticidal protein with potent activity against the cotton boll weevil (Anthonomus grandis grandis Boheman). We transformed tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum) plants with the cholesterol oxidase choM gene and expressed cytosolic and chloroplast-targeted versions of the ChoM protein. Transgenic leaf tissues expressing cholesterol oxidase exerted insecticidal activity against boll weevil larvae. Our results indicate that cholesterol oxidase can metabolize phytosterols in vivo when produced cytosolically or when targeted to chloroplasts. The transgenic plants exhibiting cytosolic expression accumulated low levels of saturated sterols known as stanols, and displayed severe developmental aberrations. In contrast, the transgenic plants expressing chloroplast-targeted cholesterol oxidase maintained a greater accumulation of stanols, and appeared phenotypically and developmentally normal. These results are discussed within the context of plant sterol distribution and metabolism. PMID:11457962

  11. The Domain of Developmental Psychopathology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sroufe, L. Alan; Rutter, Michael

    1984-01-01

    Describes how developmental psychopathology differs from related disciplines, including abnormal psychology, psychiatry, clinical child psychology, and developmental psychology. Points out propositions underlying a developmental perspective and discusses implications for research in developmental psychopathology. (Author/RH)

  12. Improvements of water chemistry for moderating environmental impacts of BWR plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Otoha, Kei-ichi; Uetake, Naohito; Uchida, Shunsuke.

    1997-01-01

    In order to cause fewer environmental impacts, nuclear power plant systems and operational procedures with fewer radwaste sources, lower occupational exposures and smaller operational areas contaminated by radioactivity which will minimize internal exposure, have been established. Collaborative efforts have demonstrated that the combined application of major improvements in the systems and better operational procedures (e.g., (1) prevention of fuel defects, (2) application of low cobalt containing and corrosion resistant materials for the primary cooling system, (3) improvement of condensate water cleanup system and the resins applied to it, and (4) careful water chemistry control) is resulting in BWRs involved in the Japanese Improvement and Standardization Program (JISP BWRs) having occupational exposure of less than 0.5 man·Sv/yr, minimized contaminated areas in turbine buildings to only around the main steam turbines, and radwaste sources producing fewer than 500 drums/yr. Additionally, the JISP BWRs have high reliability with more than a 75% duty factor and unscheduled plant shutdown occurrences of fewer than once in 10 years. (author)

  13. Life Span Developmental Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ali Eryilmaz

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available The Life Span Developmental Approach examines development of individuals which occurs from birth to death. Life span developmental approach is a multi-disciplinary approach related with disciplines like psychology, psychiatry, sociology, anthropology and geriatrics that indicates the fact that development is not completed in adulthood, it continues during the life course. Development is a complex process that consists of dying and death. This approach carefully investigates the development of individuals with respect to developmental stages. This developmental approach suggests that scientific disciplines should not explain developmental facts only with age changes. Along with aging, cognitive, biological, and socioemotional development throughout life should also be considered to provide a reasonable and acceptable context, guideposts, and reasonable expectations for the person. There are three important subjects whom life span developmental approach deals with. These are nature vs nurture, continuity vs discontinuity, and change vs stability. Researchers using life span developmental approach gather and produce knowledge on these three most important domains of individual development with their unique scientific methodology.

  14. Role of marine macroalgae in plant protection & improvement for sustainable agriculture technology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seham M. Hamed

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Marine macroalgae are plant-like organisms with simple internal structures that generally live in coastal areas. They mainly include different communities of red, brown and green macroalgae. Marine macroalgae commonly occupy intertidal and sublittoral-to-littoral zones on rocks and other hard substrata. They are considered to be an excellent natural biosource in different aspects of agricultural fields. They have great proficiency in improving soil physical and chemical properties. Marine macroalgae are also characterized by producing a large array of biologically active biocidal substances against plant-infecting pathogens. Unfortunately, most available literatures on marine macroalgae and their derivatives mainly focused on their pharmaceutical applications but their potential utilization in sustainable agriculture development is still often regarded as a secondary goal. However, a relatively considerable dataset on marine macroalgae showed that they could play a major role in plant protection and improvement. This review summarizes different aspects of potential macroalgal applications in agriculture. Commercial production and exploitation of specific compounds with interesting biotechnological importance from marine macroalgae including microbicides, nematicides, insecticides, biofertilizers, biostimulators and soil conditioners are highlighted and discussed in detail. Bioactive compounds like fatty acids (in particular polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs, proteins (amino acids, bioflavonoids, sulfated polysaccharides, carotenoids, polyphenols and carbohydrates are considered to have bactericidal, antiviral and fungicidal effects against some plant-infecting pathogens. These biocontrol agents provide multiple benefits and act as useful pointers for improving cultivation practices in diverse habitats. Marine macroalgae can be generally considered as promising multifunctional bioinoculants and ecofriendly environmental tools in recent trends

  15. Algal ancestor of land plants was preadapted for symbiosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delaux, Pierre-Marc; Radhakrishnan, Guru V; Jayaraman, Dhileepkumar; Cheema, Jitender; Malbreil, Mathilde; Volkening, Jeremy D; Sekimoto, Hiroyuki; Nishiyama, Tomoaki; Melkonian, Michael; Pokorny, Lisa; Rothfels, Carl J; Sederoff, Heike Winter; Stevenson, Dennis W; Surek, Barbara; Zhang, Yong; Sussman, Michael R; Dunand, Christophe; Morris, Richard J; Roux, Christophe; Wong, Gane Ka-Shu; Oldroyd, Giles E D; Ané, Jean-Michel

    2015-10-27

    Colonization of land by plants was a major transition on Earth, but the developmental and genetic innovations required for this transition remain unknown. Physiological studies and the fossil record strongly suggest that the ability of the first land plants to form symbiotic associations with beneficial fungi was one of these critical innovations. In angiosperms, genes required for the perception and transduction of diffusible fungal signals for root colonization and for nutrient exchange have been characterized. However, the origin of these genes and their potential correlation with land colonization remain elusive. A comprehensive phylogenetic analysis of 259 transcriptomes and 10 green algal and basal land plant genomes, coupled with the characterization of the evolutionary path leading to the appearance of a key regulator, a calcium- and calmodulin-dependent protein kinase, showed that the symbiotic signaling pathway predated the first land plants. In contrast, downstream genes required for root colonization and their specific expression pattern probably appeared subsequent to the colonization of land. We conclude that the most recent common ancestor of extant land plants and green algae was preadapted for symbiotic associations. Subsequent improvement of this precursor stage in early land plants through rounds of gene duplication led to the acquisition of additional pathways and the ability to form a fully functional arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis.

  16. Using international experience to improve performance of nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Calori, F.; Csik, B.J.; Strickert, R.J.

    1989-01-01

    Information on performance achievements will assist nuclear power plant operating organizations to develop initiatives for improved or continued high performance of their plants. The paper describes the activities of the IAEA in reviewing and analysing the reasons for good performance by contacting operating organizations identified by its Power Reactor Information System as showing continued good performance. Discussions with operations personnel of utilities have indicated practices which have a major positive impact on good performance and which are generally common to all well performing organizations contacted. The IAEA also promotes further activities directed primarily to the achievement of standards of excellence in nuclear power operation. These are briefly commented

  17. Strength training for a child with suspected developmental coordination disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menz, Stacy M; Hatten, Kristin; Grant-Beuttler, Marybeth

    2013-01-01

    Children with developmental coordination disorder (DCD) demonstrate difficulty with feedforward motor control and use varied compensatory strategies. To examine gross motor function changes following strength training in a child with motor control difficulties. A girl aged 6 years 11 months, with apraxia and hypotonia, and demonstrating motor delays consistent with DCD. Twenty-four strength training sessions were completed using a universal exercise unit. Postintervention scores significantly improved on the Bruininks-Oseretsky test of motor proficiency, second edition, and the Canadian occupational performance measure scores and raised the developmental coordination disorder questionnaire, revised 2007, scores above the range where DCD is suspected. Nonsignificant changes in strength were observed. Improved function and significant gains in manual coordination were observed following blocked practice of isolated, simple joint movements during strength training. Improved motor skills may be because of effective use of feedforward control and improved stabilization. Strength training does not rehearse skills using momentum, explaining nonsignificant changes in locomotor or locomotion areas.

  18. Transportation of part supply improvement in agricultural machinery assembly plant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saysaman, Anusit; Chutima, Parames

    2018-02-01

    This research focused on the problem caused by the transportation of part supply in agricultural machinery assembly plant in Thailand, which is one of the processes that are critical to the whole production process. If poorly managed, it will affect transportation of part supply, the emergence of sink cost, quality problems, and the ability to respond to the needs of the customers in time. Since the competition in the agricultural machinery market is more intense, the efficiency of part transportation process has to be improved. In this study, the process of transporting parts of the plant was studied and it was found that the efficiency of the process of transporting parts from the sub assembly line to its main assembly line was 83%. The approach to the performance improvement is done by using the Lean tool to limit wastes based on the ECRS principle and applying pull production system by changing the transportation method to operate as milkrun for transportation of parts to synchronize with the part demands of the main assembly line. After the transportation of parts from sub-assembly line to the main assembly line was improved, the efficiency raised to 98% and transportation process cost was saved to 540,000 Baht per year.

  19. Research highlights on: the use of induced mutations for plant improvement in Malaysia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1998-01-01

    Nuclear techniques play an increasingly valuable role in agricultural research and development. The collaborative work of IAEA and FAO has been instrumental to the progress. The nuclear techniques are now used in a wide range of applications including crop improvement. In the initial years, many plant breeders had difficulty in believing that induced mutations through radiation had any relevance to their conventional procedures. But attitudes have greatly changed, in great part due to the Joint Division's programmes. The result was a high number of improved new varieties bred to date with the help of induced mutations, including some in this country. This publication is intended primarily to gather and put in order all information on the research and work on the use of induced mutations for plant breeding in the country. Its main purpose is to see if ensuing research efforts could be better coordinated, focused and enhanced in order to supplement the plant improvement programmes in the country. The task of collating the relevant information was not without difficulty since many of the work had been carried out long time ago; their objectives generally were quite broad; and the results essentially not published, with some exceptions. Section I begins with thefntroduction, giving a brief account of the developments of induced mutations in Malaysia, the facilities available in various institutions and the role played by the National Committee on the Use of Mutations in Plant Breeding. The collaborative efforts of IAEA and IFNCC are also briefly described here, together with all the activates which they had supported in the past. Section 11 briefly describes the induced mutations and how they are produced and utilised in the plant improvement programmes, taking into consideration the safety precautions required, and the requirements of different crop species. Section III describes in greater details all the research that had been carried out in the country. The

  20. Brief Report: Developmental Change in Theory of Mind Abilities in Children with Autism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steele, Shelly; Joseph, Robert M.; Tager-Flusberg, Helen

    2003-01-01

    A longitudinal study investigated developmental change in theory of mind among 57 children (ages 4-14) with autism. Theory of mind tests were administered on an initial visit and one year later. Data indicated significant developmental improvement in theory of mind ability, which was primarily related to the children's language ability. (Contains…

  1. Tomatoes in oil recovery. [Plant waste additives improve yield

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1981-01-01

    The waste from processing tomato, squash and pepper stalks found unexpected use in recovery of oil. Even a negligible amount thereof in an aqueous solution pumped into an oil-bearing formation turned out to be sufficient to increase the yield. Substances of plant origin, which improve dramatically the oil-flushing properties of water, not only increase the recovery of oil, but reduce the volume of fluid to be pumped into the stratum. The staff of the Institute of Deep Oil and Gas Deposits of the Azerbaijan Academy of Sciences, who proved the technological and economical advantages of using the waste from plant processing, transmitted their findings to the oil workers of Baku. The scientists have concluded that there is a good raw material base in this republic for utilizing this method on oil-bearing formations.

  2. Applying Evolutionary Genetics to Developmental Toxicology and Risk Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leung, Maxwell C. K.; Procter, Andrew C.; Goldstone, Jared V.; Foox, Jonathan; DeSalle, Robert; Mattingly, Carolyn J.; Siddall, Mark E.; Timme-Laragy, Alicia R.

    2018-01-01

    Evolutionary thinking continues to challenge our views on health and disease. Yet, there is a communication gap between evolutionary biologists and toxicologists in recognizing the connections among developmental pathways, high-throughput screening, and birth defects in humans. To increase our capability in identifying potential developmental toxicants in humans, we propose to apply evolutionary genetics to improve the experimental design and data interpretation with various in vitro and whole-organism models. We review five molecular systems of stress response and update 18 consensual cell-cell signaling pathways that are the hallmark for early development, organogenesis, and differentiation; and revisit the principles of teratology in light of recent advances in high-throughput screening, big data techniques, and systems toxicology. Multiscale systems modeling plays an integral role in the evolutionary approach to cross-species extrapolation. Phylogenetic analysis and comparative bioinformatics are both valuable tools in identifying and validating the molecular initiating events that account for adverse developmental outcomes in humans. The discordance of susceptibility between test species and humans (ontogeny) reflects their differences in evolutionary history (phylogeny). This synthesis not only can lead to novel applications in developmental toxicity and risk assessment, but also can pave the way for applying an evo-devo perspective to the study of developmental origins of health and disease. PMID:28267574

  3. Photovoltaic Plants Generation Improvement Using Li-Ion Batteries as Energy Buffer

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Beltran, H.; Swierczynski, Maciej Jozef; Luna, A.

    2011-01-01

    This paper analyzes the PV power plants operability improvement obtained when introducing energy storage (ES) systems which allow decoupling the power received from the sun on the photovoltaic (PV) panels from the power injected by the power plant into the grid. Two energy management strategies a...... are presented and analyzed, using Li-ion batteries as the energy storage buffer. The generated power redistribution and its variability reduction are All the results obtained in this paper are based on one year long simulations which used real irradiance data sampled every two minutes....

  4. Plant adaptation to temperature and photoperiod

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O. JUNTTILA

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available Plants respond to environmental conditions both by adaptation and by acclimation. The ability of the plants to grow, reproduce and survive under changing climatic conditions depends on the efficiency of adaptation and acclimation. The adaptation of developmental processes in plants to temperature and photoperiod is briefly reviewed. In annual plants this adaptation is related to growth capacity and to the timing of reproduction. In perennial plants growing under northern conditions, adaptation of the annual growth cycle to the local climatic cycle is of primary importance. Examples of the role of photothermal conditions in regulation of these phenological processes are given and discussed. The genetic and physiological bases for climatic adaptation in plants are briefly examined.;

  5. Acclimation improves salt stress tolerance in Zea mays plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pandolfi, Camilla; Azzarello, Elisa; Mancuso, Stefano; Shabala, Sergey

    2016-08-20

    Plants exposure to low level salinity activates an array of processes leading to an improvement of plant stress tolerance. Although the beneficial effect of acclimation was demonstrated in many herbaceous species, underlying mechanisms behind this phenomenon remain poorly understood. In the present study we have addressed this issue by investigating ionic mechanisms underlying the process of plant acclimation to salinity stress in Zea mays. Effect of acclimation were examined in two parallel sets of experiments: a growth experiment for agronomic assessments, sap analysis, stomatal conductance, chlorophyll content, and confocal laser scanning imaging; and a lab experiment for in vivo ion flux measurements from root tissues. Being exposed to salinity, acclimated plants (1) retain more K(+) but accumulate less Na(+) in roots; (2) have better vacuolar Na(+) sequestration ability in leaves and thus are capable of accumulating larger amounts of Na(+) in the shoot without having any detrimental effect on leaf photochemistry; and (3) rely more on Na(+) for osmotic adjustment in the shoot. At the same time, acclimation affect was not related in increased root Na(+) exclusion ability. It appears that even in a such salt-sensitive species as maize, Na(+) exclusion from uptake is of a much less importance compared with the efficient vacuolar Na(+) sequestration in the shoot. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  6. Effect of Developmental Stimulation Program on the Developmental Measures of Toddlers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elahe Ghayebie

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Background: The variability in the developmental skills is reduced after the first three years of life; therefore, it is necessary to identify and manage early developmental delays. Aim: The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of developmental stimulation program on the developmental measures of the toddlers. Method: The present randomized controlled clinical trial was conducted on 31 toddlers aged 1-3 years residing at Ali Asghar Foster Care Center within 2016-2017. Developmental interventions were carried out based on the modified guidelines of West Virginia Early Learning Standards Framework for eight weeks (three 2-hour sessions a week. The interventions included a range of age- and developmental-specific activities described in the given guidelines. Child development age was measured based on motor dimensions (i.e., gross and fine and language development (i.e., receptive and expressive before and after the intervention. The data were analyzed in SPSS software (version 11 using independent t-test and Chi-square test. Results: The mean ages of the participants in the control and intervention groups were 19.9±5.5 and 20±6.02, respectively (P=0.62. The mean ages of receptive language development (P=0.003, expressive language development (P

  7. INPO's role in the improvement of nuclear plant safety and reliability

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pate, Z.T.

    1985-01-01

    The Institute of Nuclear Power Operations (INPO) is a nonprofit, nongovernment corporation dedicated to promoting safe and reliable operation and quality construction of nuclear power plants. The institute is supported by the US nuclear utility industry. All US utilities building or operating nuclear power plants are INPO members. INPO's many activities fall within four major program areas: (1) Evaluations: INPO conducts detailed evaluations of all US operating plants, utility corporate support of nuclear programs, and nuclear projects under active construction. Events analysis and information exchange: INPO reviews plant reports of abnormal or unusual events and reports the lessons learned to the industry. INPO also fosters improved industry communications through a worldwide telecommunications network. (3) Training and accreditation: INPO assists utilities, including international participants, in developing quality training programs; and (4) Assistance: the Institute provides various forms of assistance to members and participants. INPO places emphasis on visits to facilities to aid members and participants in various program or operational areas

  8. Small RNAs in plants: Recent development and application for crop improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ayushi eKamthan

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The phenomenon of RNA interference (RNAi which involves sequence specific gene regulation by small non-coding RNAs i.e small interfering RNA (siRNA and micro RNA (miRNA has emerged as one of most powerful approaches for crop improvement. RNAi based on siRNA is one of the widely used tools of reverse genetics which aid in revealing gene functions in many species. This technology has been extensively applied to alter the gene expression in plants with an aim to achieve desirable traits. RNAi has been used for enhancing the crop yield and productivity by manipulating the gene involved in biomass, grain yield and enhanced shelf life of fruits & vegetables. It has also been applied for developing resistance against various biotic (bacteria, fungi, viruses, nematodes, insects and abiotic stresses (drought, salinity, cold etc.. Nutritional improvements of crops have also been achieved by enriching the crops with essential amino acids, fatty acids, antioxidants and other nutrients beneficial for human health or by reducing allergens or anti-nutrients. Micro RNAs are key regulators of important plant processes like growth, development and response to various stresses. In spite of similarity in size (20-24nt, miRNA differ from siRNA in precursor structures, pathway of biogenesis, and modes of action. This review also highlights the miRNA based genetic modification technology where various miRNAs/artificial miRNAs and their targets can be utilized for improving several desirable plant traits. Micro RNA based strategies are much efficient than siRNA-based RNAi strategies due to its specificity and less undesirable off target effects. As per the FDA guidelines, small RNA based transgenics are much safer for consumption than those over expressing proteins. This review thereby summarizes the emerging advances and achievement in the field of small RNAs and its application for crop improvement.

  9. Small RNAs in plants: recent development and application for crop improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kamthan, Ayushi; Chaudhuri, Abira; Kamthan, Mohan; Datta, Asis

    2015-01-01

    The phenomenon of RNA interference (RNAi) which involves sequence-specific gene regulation by small non-coding RNAs, i.e., small interfering RNA (siRNA) and microRNA (miRNA) has emerged as one of most powerful approaches for crop improvement. RNAi based on siRNA is one of the widely used tools of reverse genetics which aid in revealing gene functions in many species. This technology has been extensively applied to alter the gene expression in plants with an aim to achieve desirable traits. RNAi has been used for enhancing the crop yield and productivity by manipulating the gene involved in biomass, grain yield and enhanced shelf life of fruits and vegetables. It has also been applied for developing resistance against various biotic (bacteria, fungi, viruses, nematodes, insects) and abiotic stresses (drought, salinity, cold, etc.). Nutritional improvements of crops have also been achieved by enriching the crops with essential amino acids, fatty acids, antioxidants and other nutrients beneficial for human health or by reducing allergens or anti-nutrients. microRNAs are key regulators of important plant processes like growth, development, and response to various stresses. In spite of similarity in size (20-24 nt), miRNA differ from siRNA in precursor structures, pathway of biogenesis, and modes of action. This review also highlights the miRNA based genetic modification technology where various miRNAs/artificial miRNAs and their targets can be utilized for improving several desirable plant traits. microRNA based strategies are much efficient than siRNA-based RNAi strategies due to its specificity and less undesirable off target effects. As per the FDA guidelines, small RNA (sRNA) based transgenics are much safer for consumption than those over-expressing proteins. This review thereby summarizes the emerging advances and achievement in the field of sRNAs and its application for crop improvement.

  10. Dopaminergic-like neurons derived from oral mucosa stem cells by developmental cues improve symptoms in the hemi-parkinsonian rat model.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Javier Ganz

    Full Text Available Achieving safe and readily accessible sources for cell replacement therapy in Parkinson's disease (PD is still a challenging unresolved issue. Recently, a primitive neural crest stem cell population (hOMSC was isolated from the adult human oral mucosa and characterized in vitro and in vivo. In this study we assessed hOMSC ability to differentiate into dopamine-secreting cells with a neuronal-dopaminergic phenotype in vitro in response to dopaminergic developmental cues and tested their therapeutic potential in the hemi-Parkinsonian rat model. We found that hOMSC express constitutively a repertoire of neuronal and dopaminergic markers and pivotal transcription factors. Soluble developmental factors induced a reproducible neuronal-like morphology in the majority of hOMSC, downregulated stem cells markers, upregulated the expression of the neuronal and dopaminergic markers that resulted in dopamine release capabilities. Transplantation of these dopaminergic-induced hOMSC into the striatum of hemi-Parkinsonian rats improved their behavioral deficits as determined by amphetamine-induced rotational behavior, motor asymmetry and motor coordination tests. Human TH expressing cells and increased levels of dopamine in the transplanted hemispheres were observed 10 weeks after transplantation. These results demonstrate for the first time that soluble factors involved in the development of DA neurons, induced a DA phenotype in hOMSC in vitro that significantly improved the motor function of hemiparkinsonian rats. Based on their neural-related origin, their niche accessibility by minimal-invasive procedures and their propensity for DA differentiation, hOMSC emerge as an attractive tool for autologous cell replacement therapy in PD.

  11. Cytokinins as key regulators in plant–microbe–insect interactions: connecting plant growth and defence

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Giron, D.; Frago, E.; Glevarec, G.; Pieterse, C.M.J.; Dicke, M.

    2013-01-01

    1. Plant hormones play important roles in regulating plant growth and defence by mediating developmental processes and signalling networks involved in plant responses to a wide range of parasitic and mutualistic biotic interactions. 2. Plants are known to rapidly respond to pathogen and herbivore

  12. Means of evaluating and improving the effectiveness of training of nuclear power plant personnel

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2003-07-01

    In 1996 the IAEA published a guidebook on Nuclear Power Plant Personnel Training and its Evaluation, which constitutes the recommendations of the IAEA with respect to development, implementation and evaluation of training programmes. The IAEA Technical Working Group on Training and Qualification of Nuclear Power Plant Personnel recommended that an additional publication be prepared to provide further details concerning the effectiveness of NPP personnel training. As the nuclear power industry continues to be challenged by increasing safety requirements, a high level of competition and decreasing budgets, it becomes more important than ever to have some methodology of ensuring that training contributes a value to the organization. The actual determination of training effectiveness is not an easy task because of the many variables associated with personnel performance. For example, for training to make a difference in job performance, line management should be involved prior to training delivery to identify what performance is desired, but not being achieved. Then, training is developed to meet desired performance, which is followed by practice and continued management reinforcement. Because of these other variables, it is very difficult to prove that training had a sole contribution to performance improvement, but rather one of many contributors needed for performance improvement. The difficulty to isolate training as a sole contributor has been documented in a number of research studies over the recent years. Due to these limitations, a base assumption must be made in order to use any methodology for training effectiveness evaluation. That assumption is that there are some basic principles for developing training and if training programmes are developed and maintained using these principles, then the training provided should be an effective tool to improve the line organization performance. By monitoring various types of training effectiveness indications

  13. Means of evaluating and improving the effectiveness of training of nuclear power plant personnel

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2003-07-01

    In 1996 the IAEA published a guidebook on Nuclear Power Plant Personnel Training and its Evaluation, which constitutes the recommendations of the IAEA with respect to development, implementation and evaluation of training programmes. The IAEA Technical Working Group on Training and Qualification of Nuclear Power Plant Personnel recommended that an additional publication be prepared to provide further details concerning the effectiveness of NPP personnel training. As the nuclear power industry continues to be challenged by increasing safety requirements, a high level of competition and decreasing budgets, it becomes more important than ever to have some methodology of ensuring that training contributes a value to the organization. The actual determination of training effectiveness is not an easy task because of the many variables associated with personnel performance. For example, for training to make a difference in job performance, line management should be involved prior to training delivery to identify what performance is desired, but not being achieved. Then, training is developed to meet desired performance, which is followed by practice and continued management reinforcement. Because of these other variables, it is very difficult to prove that training had a sole contribution to performance improvement, but rather one of many contributors needed for performance improvement. The difficulty to isolate training as a sole contributor has been documented in a number of research studies over the recent years. Due to these limitations, a base assumption must be made in order to use any methodology for training effectiveness evaluation. That assumption is that there are some basic principles for developing training and if training programmes are developed and maintained using these principles, then the training provided should be an effective tool to improve the line organization performance. By monitoring various types of training effectiveness indications

  14. Developmental Differences in Implicit and Explicit Memory Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perez, Lori A.; Peynircioglu, Zehra F.; Blaxton, Teresa A.

    1998-01-01

    Compared perceptual and conceptual implicit and explicit memory performance of preschool, elementary, and college students. Found that conceptual explicit memory improved with age. Perceptual explicit memory and implicit memory showed no developmental change. Perceptual processing during study led to better performance than conceptual processing…

  15. Availability Improvement Program for Louisiana Power and Light's Waterford 3 Nuclear Power Plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Simoneaux, G.E.

    1985-01-01

    The Middle South Utilities System (MSUS) began an Availability Improvement Program (AIP) in the late nineteen-seventies for the benefit of all the operating units making up the System. This paper describes the methodology that is being employed in implementing a formal Avalability Improvement Program for a new nuclear unit known as Waterford 3. The tasks needed to install and maintain the AIP at Waterford 3 are discussed in terms of Analytical Methodology, Avalability Data System, and Plant Imvolvement. In particular, the AIP will provide: Management reporting; External reporting; A self-sufficient core of trained avalability personnel; Procedures and methodologies to monitor plant availability and to analyze availability problems

  16. Improvement of environmental aspects of thermal power plant operation by advanced control concepts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mikulandrić Robert

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The necessity of the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, as formulated in the Kyoto Protocol, imposes the need for improving environmental aspects of existing thermal power plants operation. Improvements can be reached either by efficiency increment or by implementation of emission reduction measures. Investments in refurbishment of existing plant components or in plant upgrading by flue gas desulphurization, by primary and secondary measures of nitrogen oxides reduction, or by biomass co-firing, are usually accompanied by modernisation of thermal power plant instrumentation and control system including sensors, equipment diagnostics and advanced controls. Impact of advanced control solutions implementation depends on technical characteristics and status of existing instrumentation and control systems as well as on design characteristics and actual conditions of installed plant components. Evaluation of adequacy of implementation of advanced control concepts is especially important in Western Balkan region where thermal power plants portfolio is rather diversified in terms of size, type and commissioning year and where generally poor maintenance and lack of investments in power generation sector resulted in high greenhouse gases emissions and low efficiency of plants in operation. This paper is intended to present possibilities of implementation of advanced control concepts, and particularly those based on artificial intelligence, in selected thermal power plants in order to increase plant efficiency and to lower pollutants emissions and to comply with environmental quality standards prescribed in large combustion plant directive. [Acknowledgements. This paper has been created within WBalkICT - Supporting Common RTD actions in WBCs for developing Low Cost and Low Risk ICT based solutions for TPPs Energy Efficiency increasing, SEE-ERA.NET plus project in cooperation among partners from IPA SA - Romania, University of Zagreb - Croatia and Vinca

  17. Strategy for improving instrumentation and control in operating nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Abad Bassols, L.; Nino Perote, R.

    1996-01-01

    There are three basic reasons why nuclear power plants need to systematically upgrade their instrumentation and control equipment: Obsolete instrumentation and lack spares Little capacity of flexibility for extension Possibility of attaining better systems integration and improving systems-operations interface This article shows how to approach these issues using the following strategies: Use of distributed control systems and PLCs for control, signalling, command, communications, etc, in both nuclear and conventional applications Upgrading of process instrumentation equipment, sensors, transmitters, etc Upgrading of alarm-signalling systems In each group of equipment items consideration should be given to: Aspects regarding manufacturers-suppliers Effects on design, adaptation and documentation of operating plants Effects on the training and handling skills of operation and maintenance staff Strategy for incorporating the new system into the Plant with minimum impact on operation (Author)

  18. Improvements and standardization of communication means for control room personnel in nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Preuss, W.; Eggerdinger, C.; Sieber, R.

    1982-01-01

    This report describes the findings of an investigation into selected communication means for control room personnel in nuclear power stations. The study can be seen as a contribution to the systematic analysis of major problem areas which were identified in the general study 'Human factors in the nuclear power plant'. The subjects under investigation were the 'Shift book', 'Simulation book', and 'Technical and organisational changes and their records'. It was intended to analyse both the communication, processes and the associated written documentation in order to determine areas for potential improvement and possibilities for standardization. Information was obtained by interviewing shift members and their supervisors, by general observation, and by compilation and evaluation of the extensive dokumentation. Assessment criteria were developed on a scientific basis and in the course of the investigation, in particular from ergonomic findings, as well as from standards and regulations and comparison between the plants. General practical suggestions were developed for the improvement of the communication forms and the formal design of the documents and their contents. The transfer of the recommendations to practical use in the plants presupposes the consideration of plant-specific frames of reference. The report includes a compilation and listing of suggestions for improvement in topical subdivisions. (orig.) [de

  19. Do iPad Applications Help Students with Developmental Disabilities Improve Life-Readiness Skills?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunn, Michael; Barrio, Brenda; Hsiao, Yun-Ju

    2016-01-01

    Students with developmental disabilities often struggle with life-readiness skills (e.g., literacy skills such as reading and writing, task completion, and communication), which also help prepare students for the workplace. Assistive technology tools offer these students a means to do better in these areas. In this action-research study, we…

  20. Feasibility improvement project for the gas turbine power plant in Iran

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2001-03-01

    Investigations and discussions have been given on measures to improve energy conservation and efficiency at a power plant of Kish Water and Power Company (KWPC) in Iran. The site has high ambient temperature throughout a year, making the gas turbine power plant capable of generating power only at about 70% of the rated output, with the power generation efficiency decreasing. The project has analyzed the current situation at the plant, and evaluated different means that appear effective in improving the efficiency, including the gas turbine absorbed air cooling system, the steam injection system, and the combined cycle. As a result of the discussions, it was revealed that energy saving effect can be obtained at 145 TJ with the gas turbine absorbed air cooling system, 224 TJ with the steam injection system, and 1017 TJ with the combined cycle. The annual reduction of greenhouse gas emission due to the above energy conservation would be about 11 thousand tons, 16.5 thousand tons, and 75 thousand tons, respectively. However, the investment payback period would be about 2.45 years, 8.31 years, and 14.21 years, respectively. Therefore, the profitability does not appear very attractive because of low fuel unit cost. (NEDO)

  1. Non-uniform distribution pattern for differentially expressed genes of transgenic rice Huahui 1 at different developmental stages and environments.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhi Liu

    Full Text Available DNA microarray analysis is an effective method to detect unintended effects by detecting differentially expressed genes (DEG in safety assessment of genetically modified (GM crops. With the aim to reveal the distribution of DEG of GM crops under different conditions, we performed DNA microarray analysis using transgenic rice Huahui 1 (HH1 and its non-transgenic parent Minghui 63 (MH63 at different developmental stages and environmental conditions. Considerable DEG were selected in each group of HH1 under different conditions. For each group of HH1, the number of DEG was different; however, considerable common DEG were shared between different groups of HH1. These findings suggested that both DEG and common DEG were adequate for investigation of unintended effects. Furthermore, a number of significantly changed pathways were found in all groups of HH1, indicating genetic modification caused everlasting changes to plants. To our knowledge, our study for the first time provided the non-uniformly distributed pattern for DEG of GM crops at different developmental stages and environments. Our result also suggested that DEG selected in GM plants at specific developmental stage and environment could act as useful clues for further evaluation of unintended effects of GM plants.

  2. Good practices for improved nuclear power plant performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1989-04-01

    This report provides an overview of operational principles, practice and improvements which have contributed to good performance of eight selected world nuclear power stations. The IAEA Power Reactor Information System (PRIS) was used to identify a population of good performers. It is recognized that there are many other good performing nuclear power stations not included in this report. Specific criteria described in the introduction were used in selecting these eight stations. The information contained in this report was obtained by the staff from IAEA, Division of Nuclear Power. This was accomplished by visits to the stations and visits to a number of utility support groups and three independent organizations which provide support to more than one utility. The information in this report is intended as an aid for operating organizations to identify possible improvement initiatives to enhance plant performance. Figs and tabs

  3. A study on the efficiency improvement of the plant secondary System in NPP

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kim, Chun Ho; Song Jong Sun [Chosun Univ., Kwangju (Korea, Republic of)

    2012-10-15

    The ultimate objective of the diagnostic test for thermal performance of generation facilities is to assist in making an economic decision on operation optimization of power plants by understanding the degree of heat aging due to operation of relevant facilities and planning on this basis the maintenance and repair. In this thesis, the trend in performance change was analyzed against the acceptance performance test conducted after the replacement of the high pressure turbine in 2007, through thermal performance diagnosis conducted at 100 % reactor thermal output after the 19th planned preventive maintenance of Yonggwang Nuclear Units 1 and 2, and the power plant operation was optimized by acquiring base line data for management of performance record for each major facility of the secondary system and by improving efficiency of unit instruments and peripheral instruments of the secondary system. As a result derived from the thermal performance analysis, the increase in electric output of the power plants was achieved through such operation optimizations of efficiency affecting instruments as optimization of the continuous exhaust flow rate for water supply heaters, vacuum improvement of condensers due to opening the upper/lower screens of heat transfer pipe washing system for condensers during summer, and flow rate optimization of the water vapor supplied to MSR (Moisture Separator Re heater) high pressure re heaters. This improves operation of the existing power plants without additional expense and so requires expert review by responsible personnel for practical application.

  4. Total quality drives nuclear plant improvements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Richey, R.B.

    1991-01-01

    Total quality (TQ) at Carolina Power and Light (CP and L) is fulfilling a 1985 vision of Sherwood H. Smith, Jr., CP and L's chairman, president, and chief executive officer. The TQ concept has provided a way for employees to align their creative energies toward meeting the business needs of the company. Throughout CP and L, TQ has been recognized as the vehicle for reducing operating costs and improving customer satisfaction. Within the nuclear organization, application of the TQ process has helped to improve communications, resolve challenges, and provide more consistent work practices among CP and L's three nuclear plants. Total quality was introduced from the top down, with initial benefits coming from team interactions. Senior management at CP and L defined the corporate expectations and outlined the training requirements for implementing TQ. Management staffs at each organizational level became steering committees for TQ team activities within their departments. Teams of employees most knowledgeable about a given work area were empowered to solve problems or overcome obstacles related to that work area. Employees learned to become better team players and to appreciate the quality of decisions reached through group consensus. Now, formalized methods that started TQ are becoming part of the day-to-day work ethic

  5. Study of Potential Extension For Improving Knowledge Society in Ngadas Village about Medicinal plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    hajmia guswika

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Society knowledge in Ngadas village about medicinal plants began to fade, as people do not know the plants that can be consume as a drug around them. However, the treatment by plant utilizing is a traditional medicine that has become a cultural heritage that should be conserved and has been recommended by the WHO as the effort back to nature for the maintenance of public health, prevention and treatment of disease. Wild plant that has potential as a drug in the village Ngadas big enough examples adas, ajeran, akasia duri, anting-anting, alang-alang, patikan kebo, pegagan, semanggi gunung, kersen, krisan, kecubung gunung, tempuyung, etc. The purpose of writing this article is to examine the potential of extension as a efforts on improving knowledge of society. The method used is to review literature of some journal that examines the educational efforts to improve public knowledge. Based on data obtained from reviewing the literature, extension activities proved potentially in increasing knowledge of society. Thus it is needed to do extension in an effort to provide information on the potential of medicinal plants in the Ngadas villages.

  6. Improving yeast strains using recyclable integration cassettes, for the production of plant terpenoids

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Johnson Christopher B

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Terpenoids constitute a large family of natural products, attracting commercial interest for a variety of uses as flavours, fragrances, drugs and alternative fuels. Saccharomyces cerevisiae offers a versatile cell factory, as the precursors of terpenoid biosynthesis are naturally synthesized by the sterol biosynthetic pathway. Results S. cerevisiae wild type yeast cells, selected for their capacity to produce high sterol levels were targeted for improvement aiming to increase production. Recyclable integration cassettes were developed which enable the unlimited sequential integration of desirable genetic elements (promoters, genes, termination sequence at any desired locus in the yeast genome. The approach was applied on the yeast sterol biosynthetic pathway genes HMG2, ERG20 and IDI1 resulting in several-fold increase in plant monoterpene and sesquiterpene production. The improved strains were robust and could sustain high terpenoid production levels for an extended period. Simultaneous plasmid-driven co-expression of IDI1 and the HMG2 (K6R variant, in the improved strain background, maximized monoterpene production levels. Expression of two terpene synthase enzymes from the sage species Salvia fruticosa and S. pomifera (SfCinS1, SpP330 in the modified yeast cells identified a range of terpenoids which are also present in the plant essential oils. Co-expression of the putative interacting protein HSP90 with cineole synthase 1 (SfCinS1 also improved production levels, pointing to an additional means to improve production. Conclusions Using the developed molecular tools, new yeast strains were generated with increased capacity to produce plant terpenoids. The approach taken and the durability of the strains allow successive rounds of improvement to maximize yields.

  7. Using Virtual Reality Environment to Improve Joint Attention Associated with Pervasive Developmental Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Yufang; Huang, Ruowen

    2012-01-01

    The focus of this study is using data glove to practice Joint attention skill in virtual reality environment for people with pervasive developmental disorder (PDD). The virtual reality environment provides a safe environment for PDD people. Especially, when they made errors during practice in virtual reality environment, there is no suffering or…

  8. Motor Skill Interventions to Improve Fundamental Movement Skills of Preschoolers with Developmental Delay

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirk, Megan A.; Rhodes, Ryan E.

    2011-01-01

    Preschoolers with developmental delay (DD) are at risk for poor fundamental movement skills (FMS), but a paucity of early FMS interventions exist. The purpose of this review was to critically appraise the existing interventions to establish direction for future trials targeting preschoolers with DD. A total of 11 studies met the inclusion…

  9. Complex Dynamics in Academics' Developmental Processes in Teaching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trautwein, Caroline; Nückles, Matthias; Merkt, Marianne

    2015-01-01

    Improving teaching in higher education is a concern for universities worldwide. This study explored academics' developmental processes in teaching using episodic interviews and teaching portfolios. Eight academics in the context of teaching development reported changes in their teaching and change triggers. Thematic analyses revealed seven areas…

  10. Insertion of a specific fungal 3'-phosphoadenosine-5'-phosphatase motif into a plant homologue improves halotolerance and drought tolerance of plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gašparič, Meti Buh; Lenassi, Metka; Gostinčar, Cene; Rotter, Ana; Plemenitaš, Ana; Gunde-Cimerman, Nina; Gruden, Kristina; Zel, Jana

    2013-01-01

    Soil salinity and drought are among the most serious agricultural and environmental problems of today. Therefore, investigations of plant resistance to abiotic stress have received a lot of attention in recent years. In this study, we identified the complete coding sequence of a 3'-phosphoadenosine-5'-phosphatase protein, ApHal2, from the halotolerant yeast Aureobasidium pullulans. Expression of the ApHAL2 gene in a Saccharomyces cerevisiae hal2 mutant complemented the mutant auxotrophy for methionine, and rescued the growth of the hal2 mutant in media with high NaCl concentrations. A 21-amino-acids-long region of the ApHal2 enzyme was inserted into the Arabidopsis thaliana homologue of Hal2, the SAL1 phosphatase. The inserted sequence included the META motif, which has previously been implicated in increased sodium tolerance of the Hal2 homologue from a related fungal species. Transgenic Arabidopsis plants overexpressing this modified SAL1 (mSAL1) showed improved halotolerance and drought tolerance. In a medium with an elevated salt concentration, mSAL1-expressing plants were twice as likely to have roots in a higher length category in comparison with the wild-type Arabidopsis and with plants overexpressing the native SAL1, and had 5% to 10% larger leaf surface area under moderate and severe salt stress, respectively. Similarly, after moderate drought exposure, the mSAL1-expressing plants showed 14% increased dry weight after revitalisation, with no increase in dry weight of the wild-type plants. With severe drought, plants overexpressing native SAL1 had the worst rehydration success, consistent with the recently proposed role of SAL1 in severe drought. This was not observed for plants expressing mSAL1. Therefore, the presence of this fungal META motif sequence is beneficial under conditions of increased salinity and moderate drought, and shows no drawbacks for plant survival under severe drought. This demonstrates that adaptations of extremotolerant fungi should

  11. Improved people detection in nuclear plants by video processing for safety purpose

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jorge, Carlos Alexandre F.; Mol, Antonio Carlos A.; Carvalho, Paulo Victor R., E-mail: calexandre@ien.gov.br, E-mail: mol@ien.gov.br, E-mail: paulov@ien.gov.br [Instituto de Engenharia Nuclear (IEN/CNEN-RJ), Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil); Seixas, Jose M.; Silva, Eduardo Antonio B., E-mail: seixas@lps.ufrj.br, E-mail: eduardo@smt.ufrj.br [Coordenacao dos Programas de Pos-Graduacao em Engenharia (COPPE/UFRJ), RJ (Brazil). Programa de Engenharia Eletrica; Waintraub, Fabio, E-mail: fabiowaintraub@hotmail.com [Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), RJ (Brazil). Escola Politecnica. Departamento de Engenharia Eletronica e de Computacao

    2013-07-01

    This work describes improvements in a surveillance system for safety purposes in nuclear plants. The objective is to track people online in video, in order to estimate the dose received by personnel, during working tasks executed in nuclear plants. The estimation will be based on their tracked positions and on dose rate mapping in a nuclear research reactor, Argonauta. Cameras have been installed within Argonauta room, supplying the data needed. Video processing methods were combined for detecting and tracking people in video. More specifically, segmentation, performed by background subtraction, was combined with a tracking method based on color distribution. The use of both methods improved the overall results. An alternative approach was also evaluated, by means of blind source signal separation. Results are commented, along with perspectives. (author)

  12. Improved people detection in nuclear plants by video processing for safety purpose

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jorge, Carlos Alexandre F.; Mol, Antonio Carlos A.; Carvalho, Paulo Victor R.; Seixas, Jose M.; Silva, Eduardo Antonio B.; Waintraub, Fabio

    2013-01-01

    This work describes improvements in a surveillance system for safety purposes in nuclear plants. The objective is to track people online in video, in order to estimate the dose received by personnel, during working tasks executed in nuclear plants. The estimation will be based on their tracked positions and on dose rate mapping in a nuclear research reactor, Argonauta. Cameras have been installed within Argonauta room, supplying the data needed. Video processing methods were combined for detecting and tracking people in video. More specifically, segmentation, performed by background subtraction, was combined with a tracking method based on color distribution. The use of both methods improved the overall results. An alternative approach was also evaluated, by means of blind source signal separation. Results are commented, along with perspectives. (author)

  13. Building a developmental toxicity ontology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baker, Nancy; Boobis, Alan; Burgoon, Lyle; Carney, Edward; Currie, Richard; Fritsche, Ellen; Knudsen, Thomas; Laffont, Madeleine; Piersma, Aldert H; Poole, Alan; Schneider, Steffen; Daston, George

    2018-04-03

    As more information is generated about modes of action for developmental toxicity and more data are generated using high-throughput and high-content technologies, it is becoming necessary to organize that information. This report discussed the need for a systematic representation of knowledge about developmental toxicity (i.e., an ontology) and proposes a method to build one based on knowledge of developmental biology and mode of action/ adverse outcome pathways in developmental toxicity. This report is the result of a consensus working group developing a plan to create an ontology for developmental toxicity that spans multiple levels of biological organization. This report provide a description of some of the challenges in building a developmental toxicity ontology and outlines a proposed methodology to meet those challenges. As the ontology is built on currently available web-based resources, a review of these resources is provided. Case studies on one of the most well-understood morphogens and developmental toxicants, retinoic acid, are presented as examples of how such an ontology might be developed. This report outlines an approach to construct a developmental toxicity ontology. Such an ontology will facilitate computer-based prediction of substances likely to induce human developmental toxicity. © 2018 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  14. Improvement of pulse crops through induced mutations: Reconstruction of plant type

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rao, C.H.; Tickoo, J.L.; Ram, H.; Jain, H.K.

    1975-01-01

    Many species of grain legumes, because of their cultivation under marginal conditions for centuries, have retained a number of semi-wild characteristics, such as a bushy and spreading growth, which contribute to their adaptability but reduce their yields. The observations presented here indicate that induced mutations may prove effective in generating new plant-types in these crops, which are marked by an improvement in the harvest index and which will show a response to increased plant densities. The present report describes observations on the M 2 progenies of pigeon pea and mung bean on which work has been initiated. (author)

  15. Some possibilities for improvement of fuel utilization in nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kocic, A.; Marinkovic, N.

    1983-01-01

    Methods for improving the nuclear fuel utilization with the emphasis on LWRs are being dealt with in this paper. Some basic results concerning tubular fuel pellets of the Krsko nuclear power plants are presented, showing promising possibilities for uranium saving from the neutronics point of view. (author)

  16. Transgenerational developmental programming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aiken, Catherine E; Ozanne, Susan E

    2014-01-01

    The concept of developmental programming suggests that the early life environment influences offspring characteristics in later life, including the propensity to develop diseases such as the metabolic syndrome. There is now growing evidence that the effects of developmental programming may also manifest in further generations without further suboptimal exposure. This review considers the evidence, primarily from rodent models, for effects persisting to subsequent generations, and evaluates the mechanisms by which developmental programming may be transmitted to further generations. In particular, we focus on the potential role of the intrauterine environment in contributing to a developmentally programmed phenotype in subsequent generations. The literature was systematically searched at http://pubmed.org and http://scholar.google.com to identify published findings regarding transgenerational (F2 and beyond) developmental programming effects in human populations and animal models. Transmission of programming effects is often viewed as a form of epigenetic inheritance, either via the maternal or paternal line. Evidence exists for both germline and somatic inheritance of epigenetic modifications which may be responsible for phenotypic changes in further generations. However, there is increasing evidence for the role of both extra-genomic components of the zygote and the interaction of the developing conceptus with the intrauterine environment in propagating programming effects. The contribution of a suboptimal reproductive tract environment or maternal adaptations to pregnancy may be critical to inheritance of programming effects via the maternal line. As the effects of age exacerbate the programmed metabolic phenotype, advancing maternal age may increase the likelihood of developmental programming effects being transmitted to further generations. We suggest that developmental programming effects could be propagated through the maternal line de novo in generations

  17. Regulation of phosphate starvation responses in higher plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Xiao Juan; Finnegan, Patrick M

    2010-04-01

    Phosphorus (P) is often a limiting mineral nutrient for plant growth. Many soils worldwide are deficient in soluble inorganic phosphate (P(i)), the form of P most readily absorbed and utilized by plants. A network of elaborate developmental and biochemical adaptations has evolved in plants to enhance P(i) acquisition and avoid starvation. Controlling the deployment of adaptations used by plants to avoid P(i) starvation requires a sophisticated sensing and regulatory system that can integrate external and internal information regarding P(i) availability. In this review, the current knowledge of the regulatory mechanisms that control P(i) starvation responses and the local and long-distance signals that may trigger P(i) starvation responses are discussed. Uncharacterized mutants that have P(i)-related phenotypes and their potential to give us additional insights into regulatory pathways and P(i) starvation-induced signalling are also highlighted and assessed. An impressive list of factors that regulate P(i) starvation responses is now available, as is a good deal of knowledge regarding the local and long-distance signals that allow a plant to sense and respond to P(i) availability. However, we are only beginning to understand how these factors and signals are integrated with one another in a regulatory web able to control the range of responses demonstrated by plants grown in low P(i) environments. Much more knowledge is needed in this agronomically important area before real gains can be made in improving P(i) acquisition in crop plants.

  18. DELLA genes restrict inflorescence meristem function independently of plant height.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Serrano-Mislata, Antonio; Bencivenga, Stefano; Bush, Max; Schiessl, Katharina; Boden, Scott; Sablowski, Robert

    2017-09-01

    DELLA proteins associate with transcription factors to control plant growth in response to gibberellin 1 . Semi-dwarf DELLA mutants with improved harvest index and decreased lodging greatly improved global food security during the 'green revolution' in the 1960-1970s 2 . However, DELLA mutants are pleiotropic and the developmental basis for their effects on plant architecture remains poorly understood. Here, we show that DELLA proteins have genetically separable roles in controlling stem growth and the size of the inflorescence meristem, where flowers initiate. Quantitative three-dimensional image analysis, combined with a genome-wide screen for DELLA-bound loci in the inflorescence tip, revealed that DELLAs limit meristem size in Arabidopsis by directly upregulating the cell-cycle inhibitor KRP2 in the underlying rib meristem, without affecting the canonical WUSCHEL-CLAVATA meristem size regulators 3 . Mutation of KRP2 in a DELLA semi-dwarf background restored meristem size, but not stem growth, and accelerated flower production. In barley, secondary mutations in the DELLA gain-of-function mutant Sln1d 4 also uncoupled meristem and inflorescence size from plant height. Our work reveals an unexpected and conserved role for DELLA genes in controlling shoot meristem function and suggests how dissection of pleiotropic DELLA functions could unlock further yield gains in semi-dwarf mutants.

  19. Overview of human performance improvement initiatives in Nuclear Power Plants (NPPs )

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sharma, Ashok Kumar

    2006-01-01

    Nuclear Power Plants (NPPs) are very complex systems. Diverse, multiple and redundant technological systems are used for effective control and safety of the NPPs. The increased numbers of such systems require increased operator attention. Additionally, the control stations (man-machine interfaces) are to be kept manageable in size. This sometimes reduces the scope for truly ergonomic design. These limitations, coupled with the shortcomings of human nature, led to unintended human performance problems and errors resulting into poor plant performance worldwide. Some organisational weaknesses, managerial decisions and latent errors also aided and abetted human errors. In view of this, a need was felt for development of performance culture at all levels in NPP organisations. Towards this end, ready-to-use performance improvement tools were developed and used for individual performers, supervisors and managers in the NPPs. This paper describes the experiences of the global nuclear electricity generating industry towards human performance improvement and error reduction. (author)

  20. Cell-specific expression of plant nutrient transporter genes in orchid mycorrhizae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fochi, Valeria; Falla, Nicole; Girlanda, Mariangela; Perotto, Silvia; Balestrini, Raffaella

    2017-10-01

    Orchid mycorrhizal protocorms and roots are heterogeneous structures composed of different plant cell-types, where cells colonized by intracellular fungal coils (the pelotons) are close to non-colonized plant cells. Moreover, the fungal coils undergo rapid turnover inside the colonized cells, so that plant cells containing coils at different developmental stages can be observed in the same tissue section. Here, we have investigated by laser microdissection (LMD) the localization of specific plant gene transcripts in different cell-type populations collected from mycorrhizal protocorms and roots of the Mediterranean orchid Serapias vomeracea colonized by Tulasnella calospora. RNAs extracted from the different cell-type populations have been used to study plant gene expression, focusing on genes potentially involved in N uptake and transport and previously identified as up-regulated in symbiotic protocorms. Results clearly showed that some plant N transporters are differentially expressed in cells containing fungal coils at different developmental stages, as well as in non-colonized cells, and allowed the identification of new functional markers associated to coil-containing cells. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Total quality management to improve gas plant profits

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kovacs, K.; Wood, G.; Thompson, L.

    1992-01-01

    This paper describes the application of total quality management (TQM) techniques to the gas processing industry. It also assesses the profit potential for applying TQM in a typical plant situation. Companies utilizing TQM techniques will enjoy a competitive advantage. It represents a new way of doing business for the gas processing industry and incorporates many of Dr. W. Edwards Deming's methods which are often cited as one of the competitive advantages used by the Japanese. TQM can be described as a collection of systems or techniques that work toward two major objectives: To continuously improve the process or operation; and To view meeting the customer's needs as an important criterion for success. As applied to a typical U.S. gas processing operation, it involves several different techniques which are outlined in the paper. The benefits of TQM are detailed in this paper. All of these benefits go directly to a plant's bottom line profitability. The paper also describes ho to establish a program and identifies the factors necessary for successful implementation

  2. Improved liquid waste processing system of PWR plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Suehiro, Kazuyasu

    1977-01-01

    Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. has engaged in the improvement and enhancement of waste-processing facilities for PWR power stations, and recently established the improved processing system. With this system, it becomes possible to contain radioactive waste gas semi-permanently within plants and to recycle waste liquid after the treatment, thus to make the release of radioactive wastes practically zero. The improved system has the following features, namely the recycling system is adopted, drain is separated and each separated drain is treated by specialized process, the reboiler type evaporator and the reverse osmosis equipment are used, and the leakless construction is adopted for the equipments. The radioactive liquid wastes in PWR power stations are classified into coolant drain, drain from general equipments, chemical drain and cleaning water. The outline of the improved processing system and the newly developed equipments such as the reboiler type evaporator and the reverse osmosis equipment are explained. With the evaporator, the concentration rate of waste liquid can be raised to about three times, and foaming waste can be treated efficiently. The decontamination performance is excellent. The reverse osmosis treatment is stable and reliable method, and is useful for the treatment of cleaning water. It is also effective for concentrating treatment. The unmanned automatic operation is possible. (Kako, I.)

  3. Health-related quality of life, developmental milestones, and self-esteem in young adults with bleeding disorders

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Limperg, P.F. (P. F.); L. Haverman (Lotte); H. Maurice-Stam (Heleen); M. Coppens; Valk, C. (C.); M.J.H.A. Kruip (Marieke); J.C.J. Eikenboom (Jeroen); M. Peters; M.A. Grootenhuis (Martha)

    2017-01-01

    textabstractBackground: The treatment of bleeding disorders improved in the last decades. However, the effect of growing up with bleeding disorders on developmental, emotional, and social aspects is understudied. Therefore, this study assesses HRQOL, developmental milestones, and self-esteem in

  4. Tilting Plant Metabolism for Improved Metabolite Biosynthesis and Enhanced Human Benefit

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bhekumthetho Ncube

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available The immense chemical diversity of plant-derived secondary metabolites coupled with their vast array of biological functions has seen this group of compounds attract considerable research interest across a range of research disciplines. Medicinal and aromatic plants, in particular, have been exploited for this biogenic pool of phytochemicals for products such as pharmaceuticals, fragrances, dyes, and insecticides, among others. With consumers showing increasing interests in these products, innovative biotechnological techniques are being developed and employed to alter plant secondary metabolism in efforts to improve on the quality and quantity of specific metabolites of interest. This review provides an overview of the biosynthesis for phytochemical compounds with medicinal and other related properties and their associated biological activities. It also provides an insight into how their biosynthesis/biosynthetic pathways have been modified/altered to enhance production.

  5. Controlling plant architecture by manipulation of gibberellic acid signalling in petunia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibberellic acid (GA), a plant hormone, regulates many crucial growth and developmental processes, including seed germination, leaf expansion, induction of flowering and stem elongation. A common problem in the production of ornamental potted plants is undesirably tall growth, so inhibitors of gibbe...

  6. Legacy for ChildrenTM: a pair of randomized controlled trials of a public health model to improve developmental outcomes among children in poverty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Perou Ruth

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background One in five Americans under age 18 lives in a family below the Federal poverty threshold. These more than 15 million children are at increased risk of a wide variety of adverse long-term health and developmental outcomes. The early years of life are critical to short- and long-term health and well-being. The Legacy for ChildrenTM model was developed in response to this need and marries the perspectives of epidemiology and public health to developmental psychology theory in order to better address the needs of children at environmental risk for poor developmental outcomes. Methods/design The Legacy for ChildrenTM group-based parenting intervention model was evaluated as a pair of randomized controlled trials among low-income families in Miami and Los Angeles. The study was designed to allow for site-stratified analysis in order to evaluate each model implementation separately. Evaluation domains include comprehensive assessments of family, maternal, and child characteristics, process outcomes, and prospective programmatic cost. Data collection began prenatally or at birth and continues into school-age. Discussion The societal costs of poor developmental outcomes are substantial. A concerted effort from multiple sectors and disciplines, including public health, is necessary to address these societal concerns. Legacy uses a public health model to engage parents and promote overall child well-being in families in poverty through rigorous evaluation methodologies and evidence-based intervention strategies. This study collects rich and modular information on maternal and child outcomes, process, and cost that will enable a detailed understanding of how Legacy works, how it can be refined and improved, and how it can be translated and disseminated. Taken together, these results will inform public policy and help to address issues of health disparities among at-risk populations. Trial registration NCT00164697

  7. Optimization of Boiler Control to Improve the Load-following Capability of Power-plant Units

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mortensen, J. H.; Mølbak, T.; Andersen, Palle

    The capability to perform fast load changes has been an important issue in the power market, and will become increasingly more so due to the incresing commercialisation of the European power market. An optimizing control system for improving the load-following capability of power-plant units has...... tests on a 265 MW coal-fired power-plant unit reveals that the maximum allowable load gradient that can be imposed on the plant, can be increased from 4 MW/min. to 8 MW/min....

  8. Optimization of Boiler Control to Improve the Load-following Capability of Power-plant Units

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mortensen, J. H.; Mølbak, T.; Andersen, Palle

    1998-01-01

    The capability to perform fast load changes has been an important issue in the power market, and will become increasingly more so due to the incresing commercialisation of the European power market. An optimizing control system for improving the load-following capability of power-plant units has...... tests on a 265 MW coal-fired power-plant unit reveals that the maximum allowable load gradient that can be imposed on the plant, can be increased from 4 MW/min. to 8 MW/min....

  9. Process improvement technology for petrochemical plant; Sekiyu kagaku puranto ni okesu purosesu kaizen gijutsu

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yamada, Shin

    1999-05-05

    Before, GTC technology Co. was a manufacturer of the tray as a Greenwich technology. It is the subsidiary, which undertakes technology and licence of the engineering firm in U.S.A. at present. It carries out besides the technology licence support in the startup for the prolonged driving of technical service, operating condition of the plant of improvement and optimization and, etc. Has made separation and purification technology, which made extractive distillation to be a beginning good and has the process improvement technology to the PTA (high-pure terephthalic acid) from BTX (benzene toluene xylene) of petrochemical plant. (NEDO)

  10. Reintroduction of salt marsh vegetation and phosphorus fertilisation improve plant colonisation on seawater-contaminated cutover bogs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Emond

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Coastal bogs that are used for peat extraction are prone to contamination by seawater during storm events. Once contaminated, they remain mostly bare because of the combination of high salinity, low pH, high water table and low nutrient availability. The goal of this research was to investigate how plant colonisation at salt-contaminated bogs can be accelerated, in order to prevent erosion and fluvial export of the peat. At two seawater-contaminated bogs, we tested the application of rock phosphate and dolomitic lime in combination with five plant introduction treatments: transplantation of Carex paleacea; transplantation of Spartina pectinata; transfer of salt marsh diaspores in July; transfer of salt marsh diaspores in August; and no treatment (control. The effects of different doses of lime on the growth of C. paleacea and S. pectinata were also investigated in a greenhouse experiment. In the field, phosphorus fertilisation improved plant growth. Transplantation of C. paleacea resulted in the highest plant colonisation, whereas salt marsh diaspore transfer led to the highest species diversity. Lime applications did not improve plant establishment in either the field or the greenhouse. To promote revegetation of seawater-contaminated cutover bogs, adding P is an asset, Carex paleacea is a good species to transplant, and the transfer of salt marsh diaspores improves plant diversity.

  11. Role of recent research in improving check valve reliability at nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kalsi, M.S.; Horst, C.L.; Wang, J.K.; Sharma, V.

    1990-01-01

    Check valve failures at nuclear power plants in recent years have led to serious safety concerns, and caused extensive damage to other plant components which had a significant impact on plant availability. In order to understand the failure mechanism and improve the reliability of check valves, a systematic research effort was proposed by Kalsi Engineering, Inc. to U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). The overall goal of the research was to develop models for predicting the performance and degradation of swing check valves in nuclear power plant systems so that appropriate preventive maintenance or design modifications can be performed to improve the reliability of check valves. Under Phase I of this research, a large matrix of tests was run with instrumented swing check valves to determine the stability of the disc under a variety of upstream flow disturbances, covering a wide range of disc stop positions and flow velocities in two different valve sizes. The goals of Phase II research were to develop predictive models which quantify the anticipated degradation of swing check valves that have flow disturbances closely upstream of the valve and are operating under flow velocities that do not result in full disc opening. This research allows the inspection/maintenance activities to be focussed on those check valves that are more likely to suffer premature degradation. The quantitative wear and fatigue prediction methodology can be used to develop a sound preventive maintenance program. The results of the research also show the improvements in check valve performance/reliability that can be achieved by certain modifications in the valve design

  12. Simulation analysis of capacity and performance improvement in wastewater treatment plants: Case study of Alexandria eastern plant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moursy, Aly; Sorour, Mohamed T.; Moustafa, Medhat; Elbarqi, Walid; Fayd, Mai; Elreedy, Ahmed

    2018-05-01

    This study concerns the upgrading of a real domestic wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) supported by simulation. The main aims of this work are to: (1) decide between two technologies to improve WWTP capacity and its nitrogen removal efficiency; membrane bioreactor (MBR) and integrated fixed film activated sludge (IFAS), and (2) perform a cost estimation analysis for the two proposed solutions. The model used was calibrated based on data from the existing WWTP, namely, Eastern plant and located in Alexandria, Egypt. The activated sludge model No. 1 (ASM1) was considered in the model analysis by GPS-X 7 software. Steady-state analysis revealed that high performances corresponded to high compliance with Egyptian standards were achieved by the two techniques; however, MBR was better. Nonetheless, the two systems showed poor nitrogen removal efficiency according to the current situation, which reveals that the plant needs a modification to add an anaerobic treatment unit before the aerobic zone.

  13. Biochar amendment improves soil fertility and productivity of mulberry plant

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Faruque Ahmed

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Biochar has the potential to improve soil fertility and crop productivity. A field experiment was carried out at the experimental field of Bangladesh Sericulture Research and Training Institute (BSRTI, Rajshahi, Bangladesh. The objective of this study was to examine the effect of biochar on soil properties, growth, yield and foliar disease incidence of mulberry plant. The study consisted of 6 treatments: control, basal dose of NPK, rice husk biochar, mineral enriched biochar, basal dose + rice husk biochar and basal dose + mineral enriched biochar. Growth parameters such as node/meter, total branch number/plant, total leaf yield/hectare/year were significantly increased in basal dose + mineral enriched biochar treated plot in second year compared with the other fertilizer treatments. In second year, the total leaf yield/hectare/year were also 142.1% and 115.9% higher in combined application of basal dose + mineral enriched biochar and basal dose + rice husk biochar, respectively, than the control treatment. The soil properties such as organic matter, phosphorus, sulphur and zinc percentage were significantly increased with both the (mineral enriched and rice husk biochar treated soil applied with or without recommended basal dose of NPK than the control and only the recommended basal dose of NPK, respectively. Further, the lowest incidences of tukra (6.4%, powdery mildew (10.4% and leaf spot (7.6% disease were observed in second year under mineral enriched biochar treated plot than the others. The findings revealed that utilization of biochar has positive effect on the improvement of soil fertility and productivity as well as disease suppression of mulberry plant.

  14. Structural Studies of Complex Carbohydrates of Plant Cell Walls

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Darvill, Alan [Univ. of Georgia, Athens, GA (United States); Hahn, Michael G. [Univ. of Georgia, Athens, GA (United States); O' Neill, Malcolm A. [Univ. of Georgia, Athens, GA (United States); York, William S. [Univ. of Georgia, Athens, GA (United States)

    2015-02-17

    Most of the solar energy captured by land plants is converted into the polysaccharides (cellulose, hemicellulose, and pectin) that are the predominant components of the cell wall. These walls, which account for the bulk of plant biomass, have numerous roles in the growth and development of plants. Moreover, these walls have a major impact on human life as they are a renewable source of biomass, a source of diverse commercially useful polymers, a major component of wood, and a source of nutrition for humans and livestock. Thus, understanding the molecular mechanisms that lead to wall assembly and how cell walls and their component polysaccharides contribute to plant growth and development is essential to improve and extend the productivity and value of plant materials. The proposed research will develop and apply advanced analytical and immunological techniques to study specific changes in the structures and interactions of the hemicellulosic and pectic polysaccharides that occur during differentiation and in response to genetic modification and chemical treatments that affect wall biosynthesis. These new techniques will make it possible to accurately characterize minute amounts of cell wall polysaccharides so that subtle changes in structure that occur in individual cell types can be identified and correlated to the physiological or developmental state of the plant. Successful implementation of this research will reveal fundamental relationships between polysaccharide structure, cell wall architecture, and cell wall functions.

  15. Health-related quality of life, developmental milestones, and self-esteem in young adults with bleeding disorders

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Limperg, P. F.; Haverman, L.; Maurice-Stam, H.; Coppens, M.; Valk, C.; Kruip, M. J. H. A.; Eikenboom, J.; Peters, M.; Grootenhuis, M. A.

    2018-01-01

    The treatment of bleeding disorders improved in the last decades. However, the effect of growing up with bleeding disorders on developmental, emotional, and social aspects is understudied. Therefore, this study assesses HRQOL, developmental milestones, and self-esteem in Dutch young adults (YA) with

  16. Manipulating microRNAs for improved biomass and biofuels from plant feedstocks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trumbo, Jennifer Lynn; Zhang, Baohong; Stewart, Charles Neal

    2015-04-01

    Petroleum-based fuels are nonrenewable and unsustainable. Renewable sources of energy, such as lignocellulosic biofuels and plant metabolite-based drop-in fuels, can offset fossil fuel use and reverse environmental degradation through carbon sequestration. Despite these benefits, the lignocellulosic biofuels industry still faces many challenges, including the availability of economically viable crop plants. Cell wall recalcitrance is a major economic barrier for lignocellulosic biofuels production from biomass crops. Sustainability and biomass yield are two additional, yet interrelated, foci for biomass crop improvement. Many scientists are searching for solutions to these problems within biomass crop genomes. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are involved in almost all biological and metabolic process in plants including plant development, cell wall biosynthesis and plant stress responses. Because of the broad functions of their targets (e.g. auxin response factors), the alteration of plant miRNA expression often results in pleiotropic effects. A specific miRNA usually regulates a biologically relevant bioenergy trait. For example, relatively low miR156 overexpression leads to a transgenic feedstock with enhanced biomass and decreased recalcitrance. miRNAs have been overexpressed in dedicated bioenergy feedstocks such as poplar and switchgrass yielding promising results for lignin reduction, increased plant biomass, the timing of flowering and response to harsh environments. In this review, we present the status of miRNA-related research in several major biofuel crops and relevant model plants. We critically assess published research and suggest next steps for miRNA manipulation in feedstocks for increased biomass and sustainability for biofuels and bioproducts. © 2015 Society for Experimental Biology, Association of Applied Biologists and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  17. Advances in RNA interference technology and its impact on nutritional improvement, disease and insect control in plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katoch, Rajan; Thakur, Neelam

    2013-03-01

    This review highlights the advances in the knowledge of RNA interference (RNAi) and discusses recent progress on the functionality of different components RNAi machinery operating in the organisms. The silencing of genes by RNA interference has become the technology of choice for investigation of gene functions in different organisms. The refinement in the knowledge of the endogenous RNAi pathways in plants along with the development of new strategies and applications for the improvement of nutritional value of important agricultural crops through suppression of genes in different plants have opened new vistas for nutritional security. The improvement in the nutritional status of the plants and reduction in the level of toxins or antinutrients was desired for long, but the available technology was not completely successful in achieving the tissue specific regulation of some genes. In the recent years, a number of economically important crop plants have been tested successfully for improving plant nutritional value through metabolic engineering using RNAi. The implications of this technology for crop improvement programs, including nutritional enrichment, reduction of antinutrients, disease, and insect control have been successfully tested in variety of crops with commercial considerations. The enhancement of the nutraceutical traits for the desired health benefits in common crop plants through manipulation of gene expression has been elaborated in this article. The tremendous potential with RNAi technology is expected to revolutionize the modern agriculture for meeting the growing challenges is discussed.

  18. Additional insights into the adaptation of cotton plants under abiotic ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Abiotic stress is the primary cause of crop losses worldwide. In addition to protein coding genes, microRNAs (miRNAs) have emerged as important players in plant stress responses. Though miRNAs are key in regulating many aspects of plant developmental plasticity under abiotic stresses, very few information are available ...

  19. Improving intercropping: a synthesis of research in agronomy, plant physiology and ecology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brooker, Rob W; Bennett, Alison E; Cong, Wen-Feng; Daniell, Tim J; George, Timothy S; Hallett, Paul D; Hawes, Cathy; Iannetta, Pietro P M; Jones, Hamlyn G; Karley, Alison J; Li, Long; McKenzie, Blair M; Pakeman, Robin J; Paterson, Eric; Schöb, Christian; Shen, Jianbo; Squire, Geoff; Watson, Christine A; Zhang, Chaochun; Zhang, Fusuo; Zhang, Junling; White, Philip J

    2015-04-01

    Intercropping is a farming practice involving two or more crop species, or genotypes, growing together and coexisting for a time. On the fringes of modern intensive agriculture, intercropping is important in many subsistence or low-input/resource-limited agricultural systems. By allowing genuine yield gains without increased inputs, or greater stability of yield with decreased inputs, intercropping could be one route to delivering ‘sustainable intensification’. We discuss how recent knowledge from agronomy, plant physiology and ecology can be combined with the aim of improving intercropping systems. Recent advances in agronomy and plant physiology include better understanding of the mechanisms of interactions between crop genotypes and species – for example, enhanced resource availability through niche complementarity. Ecological advances include better understanding of the context-dependency of interactions, the mechanisms behind disease and pest avoidance, the links between above- and below-ground systems, and the role of microtopographic variation in coexistence. This improved understanding can guide approaches for improving intercropping systems, including breeding crops for intercropping. Although such advances can help to improve intercropping systems, we suggest that other topics also need addressing. These include better assessment of the wider benefits of intercropping in terms of multiple ecosystem services, collaboration with agricultural engineering, and more effective interdisciplinary research.

  20. Intellectual Disability and Developmental Risk: Promoting Intervention to Improve Child and Family Well-Being

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crnic, Keith A.; Neece, Cameron L.; McIntyre, Laura Lee; Blacher, Jan; Baker, Bruce L.

    2017-01-01

    Initial intervention processes for children with intellectual disabilities (IDs) largely focused on direct efforts to impact core cognitive and academic deficits associated with the diagnosis. Recent research on risk processes in families of children with ID, however, has influenced new developmental system approaches to early intervention. Recent…

  1. Method for improving accident sequence recognition in nuclear power plant control rooms

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Heising, C.D.; Dinsmore, S.C.

    1983-01-01

    This work adapts fault trees from plant-specific probabilistic risk analyses (PRAs) to construct and quantitatively evaluate an alarm analysis system for the engineered safety features (ESFs). The purpose is to help improve reactor operator recognition and identification of potential accident sequences. The PRA system fault trees provide system failure mode information which can be used to construct alarm trees. These alarm trees provide a framework for assessing the plant indicators so that the plant conditions are made more readily apparent to plant personnel. In the alarm tree, possible states of each instrumented alarem are identified as true or false. In addition, a warning status is defined and integrated into an alarm analysis routine. The impact of this additional status conditioned on the Boolean laws used to evaluate the alarm trees is examined. An application is described for BWR high pressure coolant injection system (HPCI) that would be utilized during many severe reactor accidents

  2. Carbon cost of plant nitrogen acquisition: global carbon cycle impact from an improved plant nitrogen cycle in the Community Land Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Mingjie; Fisher, Joshua B; Brzostek, Edward R; Phillips, Richard P

    2016-03-01

    Plants typically expend a significant portion of their available carbon (C) on nutrient acquisition - C that could otherwise support growth. However, given that most global terrestrial biosphere models (TBMs) do not include the C cost of nutrient acquisition, these models fail to represent current and future constraints to the land C sink. Here, we integrated a plant productivity-optimized nutrient acquisition model - the Fixation and Uptake of Nitrogen Model - into one of the most widely used TBMs, the Community Land Model. Global plant nitrogen (N) uptake is dynamically simulated in the coupled model based on the C costs of N acquisition from mycorrhizal roots, nonmycorrhizal roots, N-fixing microbes, and retranslocation (from senescing leaves). We find that at the global scale, plants spend 2.4 Pg C yr(-1) to acquire 1.0 Pg N yr(-1) , and that the C cost of N acquisition leads to a downregulation of global net primary production (NPP) by 13%. Mycorrhizal uptake represented the dominant pathway by which N is acquired, accounting for ~66% of the N uptake by plants. Notably, roots associating with arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi - generally considered for their role in phosphorus (P) acquisition - are estimated to be the primary source of global plant N uptake owing to the dominance of AM-associated plants in mid- and low-latitude biomes. Overall, our coupled model improves the representations of NPP downregulation globally and generates spatially explicit patterns of belowground C allocation, soil N uptake, and N retranslocation at the global scale. Such model improvements are critical for predicting how plant responses to altered N availability (owing to N deposition, rising atmospheric CO2 , and warming temperatures) may impact the land C sink. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  3. Developmental peculiarities and seed-borne endophytes in quinoa: Omnipresent, robust bacilli contribute to plant fitness.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea ePitzschke

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Among potential climate change-adapted crops for future agriculture, quinoa (Chenopodium quinoa, a facultative halophyte plant with exceptional nutritional properties, stands out as a prime candidate. This work examined how quinoa deals with extreme situations during seed rehydration. A seed-borne microbiome was discovered and its potential role in early development and stress resistance investigated.Methods involved germination and drought exposure assays, histochemical detection of reactive oxygen species, and diverse tests with seed(ling material to assess microbial occurrence, release and proliferation. Quinoa´s microbial partners were biochemically, microscopically and taxonomically characterized.Quinoa distinguishes itself from other plants in multiple ways. It germinates within minutes, even under extremely hostile conditions. Broken seeds/split embryos are able to regenerate. Furthermore, quinoa seedlings are resurrection-competent. These peculiarities became in part explainable upon discovery of seed-borne microorganisms. 100% of quinoa seeds, from different sources, are inhabited by bacteria of the genus Bacillus. These endophytes are mobile and reside in all seedling organs, indicating vertical transmission. Owing to their strong catalase activity and high superoxide contents they can modify host redox properties. One outcome is cell expansion, enabling quinoa to overcome a critical period in development, seedling establishment.Quinoa´s immediate confrontation with foreign ROS and bacterial elicitors likely induces a naturally primed state, enabling plants to withstand extreme situations. The endophytic bacteria, which are cultivable and highly robust themselves, have high potential for application in agriculture, food (amylase and cosmetics (catalase industry. An exciting question arising from this work is: Can quinoa´s microbiome be transferred to improve stress resistance in other plant species?

  4. Effects of increased solar ultraviolet radiation on terrestrial plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Caldwell, M.M.; Teramura, A.H.; Tevini, M.; Bornman, J.F.; Björn, L.O.; Kulandaivelu, G.

    1995-01-01

    Physiological and developmental processes of plants are affected by UV-B radiation, even by the amount of UV-B in present-day sunlight. Plants also have several mechanisms to ameliorate or repair these effects and may acclimate to a certain extent to increased levels of UV-B. Nevertheless, plant growth can be directly affected by UV-B radiation. Response to UV-B also varies considerably among species and also cultivars of the same species. In agriculture, this may necessitate using more UV-B-tolerant cultivars and breeding new ones. In forests and grasslands, this will likely result in changes in species composition; therefore there are implications for the biodiversity in different ecosystems. Indirect changes caused by UV-B-such as changes in plant form, biomass allocation to parts of the plant, timing of developmental phases and secondary metabolism-may be equally, or sometimes more important than damaging effects of UV-B. These changes can have important implications for plant competitive balance, herbivory, plant pathogens, and biogeochemical cycles. These ecosystem-level effects can be anticipated, but not easily predicted or evaluated. Research at the ecosystem level for solar UV-B is barely beginning. Other factors, including those involved in climate change such as increasing CO2, also interact with UV-B. Such reactions are not easily predicted, but are of obvious importance in both agriculture and in nonagricultural ecosystems

  5. Evolution of plant senescence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Young Mike

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Senescence is integral to the flowering plant life-cycle. Senescence-like processes occur also in non-angiosperm land plants, algae and photosynthetic prokaryotes. Increasing numbers of genes have been assigned functions in the regulation and execution of angiosperm senescence. At the same time there has been a large expansion in the number and taxonomic spread of plant sequences in the genome databases. The present paper uses these resources to make a study of the evolutionary origins of angiosperm senescence based on a survey of the distribution, across plant and microbial taxa, and expression of senescence-related genes. Results Phylogeny analyses were carried out on protein sequences corresponding to genes with demonstrated functions in angiosperm senescence. They include proteins involved in chlorophyll catabolism and its control, homeoprotein transcription factors, metabolite transporters, enzymes and regulators of carotenoid metabolism and of anthocyanin biosynthesis. Evolutionary timelines for the origins and functions of particular genes were inferred from the taxonomic distribution of sequences homologous to those of angiosperm senescence-related proteins. Turnover of the light energy transduction apparatus is the most ancient element in the senescence syndrome. By contrast, the association of phenylpropanoid metabolism with senescence, and integration of senescence with development and adaptation mediated by transcription factors, are relatively recent innovations of land plants. An extended range of senescence-related genes of Arabidopsis was profiled for coexpression patterns and developmental relationships and revealed a clear carotenoid metabolism grouping, coordinated expression of genes for anthocyanin and flavonoid enzymes and regulators and a cluster pattern of genes for chlorophyll catabolism consistent with functional and evolutionary features of the pathway. Conclusion The expression and phylogenetic

  6. A performance improvement program applied to the Perry Nuclear Power Plant instrumentation and control section

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anderson, G.R.

    1987-01-01

    The management at Cleveland Electric Illuminating Company sought to avoid problems typically encountered in the start-up of new nuclear generating units. In response to early indications that such problems may have been developing at their Perry Nuclear Power Plant, several performance improvement initiatives were undertaken. One of these initiatives was a performance improvement evaluation (PIE) for the instrumentation and control (IandC) section at Perry. The IandC PIE, which used a method designed to be adaptable to other disciplines as well, had important results that are applicable to other nuclear power plants

  7. Fuel additive improves plant`s air quality

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kratch, K.

    1995-07-01

    Employees of a major pulp and paper manufacturer complained to the Michigan Department of Public Health that emissions from liquefied petroleum gas-powered fork-lifts used in one of the facility`s warehouses were making them ill. The new and tight building was locking in carbon monoxide emissions, according to the plant`s vehicle maintenance supervisor. Although LPG is a clean-burning fuel, it absorbs impurities from pipelines, resulting in emissions problems. After the company introduced a fuel additive to the LPG, employees` symptoms disappeared. According to the maintenance supervisor, there have been no complaints since the additive was introduced five years ago. A major US auto manufacturer also found the additive helpful in reducing carbon monoxide emissions from forklift trucks in a large parts warehouse to levels within OSHA limits. The carmaker conducted a test of 10 forklifts at its Toledo, Ohio, plant to determine the additive`s effectiveness. Trucks were equipped with new or rebuilt vaporizers, and their carburetors were adjusted for the lowest carbon monoxide and hydrocarbon emissions levels prior to the test. According to Advanced Technology, five trucks were filled with LPG and treated with CGX-4, and five used fuel from the same stock but without the additive. All were operated 16 hours a day, six days a week without further tuning or adjusting. Carbon monoxide and hydrocarbon emissions were measured at 30-, 45- and 65-day intervals. Test results show that all of the trucks using the additive maintained low levels of carbon monoxide and hydrocarbon emissions longer than trucks not using the additive.

  8. Developmental, nutritional and hormonal anomalies of weightlessness-grown wheat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carman, J. G.; Hole, P.; Salisbury, F. B.; Bingham, G. E.

    2015-07-01

    The behavior of water in weightlessness, as occurs in orbiting spacecraft, presents multiple challenges for plant growth. Soils remain saturated, impeding aeration, and leaf surfaces remain wet, impeding gas exchange. Herein we report developmental and biochemical anomalies of "Super Dwarf" wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) grown aboard Space Station Mir during the 1996-97 "Greenhouse 2" experiment. Leaves of Mir-grown wheat were hyperhydric, senesced precociously and accumulated aromatic and branched-chain amino acids typical of tissues experiencing oxidative stress. The highest levels of stress-specific amino acids occurred in precociously-senescing leaves. Our results suggest that the leaf ventilation system of the Svet Greenhouse failed to remove sufficient boundary layer water, thus leading to poor gas exchange and onset of oxidative stress. As oxidative stress in plants has been observed in recent space-flight experiments, we recommend that percentage water content in apoplast free-spaces of leaves be used to evaluate leaf ventilation effectiveness. Mir-grown plants also tillered excessively. Crowns and culms of these plants contained low levels of abscisic acid but high levels of cytokinins. High ethylene levels may have suppressed abscisic acid synthesis, thus permitting cytokinins to accumulate and tillering to occur.

  9. An artificial solar spectrum substantially alters plant development compared with usual climate room irradiance spectra

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hogewoning, S.W.; Douwstra, P.; Trouwborst, G.; Ieperen, van W.; Harbinson, J.

    2010-01-01

    Plant responses to the light spectrum under which plants are grown affect their developmental characteristics in a complicated manner. Lamps widely used to provide growth irradiance emit spectra which are very different from natural daylight spectra. Whereas specific responses of plants to a

  10. Hunting and hallucinogens: The use psychoactive and other plants to improve the hunting ability of dogs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bennett, Bradley C; Alarcón, Rocío

    2015-08-02

    Cultures throughout the world give plants to their dogs in order to improve hunting success. These practices are best developed in lowland Ecuador and Peru. There is no experimental evidence for the efficacy of these practices nor critical reviews that consider possible pharmacological effects on dogs based on the chemistry of the ethnoverterinary plants. This review has three specific aims: (1) determine what plants the Ecuadorian Shuar and Quichua give to dogs to improve their hunting abilities, (2) determine what plants other cultures give to dogs for the same purpose, and (3) assess the possible pharmacological basis for the use of these plants, particularly the psychoactive ones. We gathered Shuar (Province of Morona-Santiago) and Quichua (Napo and Orellano Provinces) data from our previous publications and field notes. All specimens were vouchered and deposited in QCNE with duplicates sent to NY and MO. Data presented from other cultures derived from published studies on ethnoveterinary medicine. Species names were updated, when necessary, and family assignments follow APG III (Angiosperm Phylogeny Group, 2009. An update of the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group classification for the orders and families of flowering plants: APG III. Bot. J. Linn. Soc. 161, 105-121). Chemical data were found using PubMed and SciFinder. The Shuar and Quichua of Ecuador use at least 22 species for ethnoveterinary purposes, including all but one of their principal hallucinogens. Literature surveys identified 43 species used in other cultures to improve hunting ability. No published studies have examined the pharmacological active of these plant species in dogs. We, thus, combined phytochemical data with the ethnobotanical reports of each plant and then classified each species into a likely pharmacological category: depuratives/deodorant, olfactory sensitizer, ophthalmic, or psychoactive. The use of psychoactive substances to improve a dog׳s hunting ability seems counterintuitive, yet

  11. Genome Transfer Prevents Fragmentation and Restores Developmental Potential of Developmentally Compromised Postovulatory Aged Mouse Oocytes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mitsutoshi Yamada

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Changes in oocyte quality can have great impact on the developmental potential of early embryos. Here we test whether nuclear genome transfer from a developmentally incompetent to a developmentally competent oocyte can restore developmental potential. Using in vitro oocyte aging as a model system we performed nuclear transfer in mouse oocytes at metaphase II or at the first interphase, and observed that development to the blastocyst stage and to term was as efficient as in control embryos. The increased developmental potential is explained primarily by correction of abnormal cytokinesis at anaphase of meiosis and mitosis, by a reduction in chromosome segregation errors, and by normalization of the localization of chromosome passenger complex components survivin and cyclin B1. These observations demonstrate that developmental decline is primarily due to abnormal function of cytoplasmic factors involved in cytokinesis, while the genome remains developmentally fully competent.

  12. Evaluation of barriers and resilience to improve organizational performance in nuclear power plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nelson, P. F.; Martin del Campo, C., E-mail: pnelson_007@yahoo.com [UNAM, Facultad de Ingenieria, Departamento de Sistemas Energeticos, Paseo Cuauhnahuac 8532, Jiutepec 62550, Morelos (Mexico)

    2014-10-15

    In this study, several models are built from the information contained in the Condition Reports from the Corrective Action Program ar a nuclear power plant. Condition Reports are seen as indications of organizational stress levels with consequential Condition Reports being further evidence of organizational resilience being exceeded. Also contained in this paper is an examination of methods used to assess organizational resilience thresholds to preclude consequential events, based on examination of the number and severity of the Condition Reports. In combination with PSA risk insights, it is possible to identify risk significant procedures and their corresponding risk significant steps. Leading indicators can be used to identify the need for installing a barrier or defense to reduce human errors in a nuclear power plant. These indicators are developed from the Corrective Action Program data by detecting increases in events. Organizational barriers can then be identified to improve performance. The resulting identified barriers are evaluated to rank the value of each possible barrier, and determine the best barrier(s) to implement. The tool described in this paper is designed to provide a systematic approach to identify areas where improvements in organizational effectiveness best reduce the likelihood of consequential events. Due to the uncertainty of many of the factors that influence the performance of humans in nuclear power plant activities, we propose using Bayesian networks to identify sources of organizational errors leading to consequential events. This study, using actual nuclear power plant data, includes a method for data processing and highlights some potential uses of Bayesian networks for improving organizational effectiveness in the nuclear power industry. (Author)

  13. Evaluation of barriers and resilience to improve organizational performance in nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nelson, P. F.; Martin del Campo, C.

    2014-10-01

    In this study, several models are built from the information contained in the Condition Reports from the Corrective Action Program ar a nuclear power plant. Condition Reports are seen as indications of organizational stress levels with consequential Condition Reports being further evidence of organizational resilience being exceeded. Also contained in this paper is an examination of methods used to assess organizational resilience thresholds to preclude consequential events, based on examination of the number and severity of the Condition Reports. In combination with PSA risk insights, it is possible to identify risk significant procedures and their corresponding risk significant steps. Leading indicators can be used to identify the need for installing a barrier or defense to reduce human errors in a nuclear power plant. These indicators are developed from the Corrective Action Program data by detecting increases in events. Organizational barriers can then be identified to improve performance. The resulting identified barriers are evaluated to rank the value of each possible barrier, and determine the best barrier(s) to implement. The tool described in this paper is designed to provide a systematic approach to identify areas where improvements in organizational effectiveness best reduce the likelihood of consequential events. Due to the uncertainty of many of the factors that influence the performance of humans in nuclear power plant activities, we propose using Bayesian networks to identify sources of organizational errors leading to consequential events. This study, using actual nuclear power plant data, includes a method for data processing and highlights some potential uses of Bayesian networks for improving organizational effectiveness in the nuclear power industry. (Author)

  14. Application of neural network technology to nuclear plant thermal efficiency improvement

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Doremus, Rick; Allen Ho, S.; Bailey, James V.; Roman, Harry

    2004-01-01

    Due to the tremendous cost of building new nuclear power plants, it has become increasingly attractive to increase the power output from the existing operating power plants. There are two options that may be available to accomplish this goal. One option is to uprate the plant through licensing modification for a comfortably achievable goal of 4% to 6%. However, the licensing efforts required are no small task, vary from plant to plant, and may take years to accomplish. Some nuclear power plants may not have this option because of design, environmental, political, or geographical limitations. A second option exists that is simpler and more immediate. It focuses on improving the plant operating conditions using adaptive software that could increase the total plant output by approximately one-half percent by adjusting certain key operating parameters. No design basis analyses, hardware modifications, or licensing changes are required. In fact, this technique can be used on a plant that has already obtained licensing modification to obtain an additional one-half percent on top of the 4% to 6% increase. Public Service Electric and Gas and ARD Corporation are jointly investigating the creation of a Plant Optimization System, called POSITIVE. POSITIVE is an adaptive software tool that enables a user to analyze current plant data to identify potential problem areas and to obtain recommendations for increasing the plant's electric output. POSITIVE uses a combination of expert systems and adaptive software to analyze the thermal performance of a nuclear power plant. Historical data, obtained while the plant was above 93% power, is used to train neural networks to determine the current electric output of the plant. Once sufficiently trained, new data can be processed through the neural network. The neural network first determines the electric output associated with the current data. If the actual power matches the power predicted by the network, the neural network can be used

  15. Developmental Science: Past, Present, and Future

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lerner, Richard M.

    2012-01-01

    The goal of developmental science is to describe, explain, and optimize intraindividual changes in adaptive developmental regulations and, as well, interindividual differences in such relations, across life. The history of developmental science is reviewed and its current foci, which are framed by relational developmental systems models that…

  16. Nuclear power plant organization and staffing for improved performance: Lessons learned

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1998-11-01

    Experience from well operated nuclear power plants (NPPs) around the world indicates that an organizational structure which efficiently supports plant operation is essential in economically achieving both high level of safety and operational performance. At the same time energy markets are being opened to competition in many Member States. It is in consideration of this new competitive energy market that the overall objective of this document is to provide NPP managers information on lessons learned on improving the organization and staffing of NPP activities. Within this overall objective, specific objectives are to: Identify organisational design and staffing principles, Provide examples of how NPPs implement these principles, Identify typical NPP staffing levels, Factors affecting these levels, and staffing trends among various NPP types. Although it is not expected that any particular utility or NPP manager would consider all of the suggestions provided here to be appropriate, it is anticipated that nearly every NPP manager in IAEA Member States would find some ideas useful in improving the efficiency and effectiveness of NPP activities

  17. Retrofit of ammonia plant for improving energy efficiency

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Panjeshahi, M.H.; Ghasemian Langeroudi, E.; Tahouni, N.

    2008-01-01

    The aim of this work is to perform a retrofit study of an ammonia plant, in purpose of improving energy efficiency. As a common practice, one can divide an ammonia plant into two parts: the hot-end and the cold-end. In the hot section, two different options are investigated that both lead to a threshold condition and achieve maximum energy saving. The first option covers only process-to-process energy integration, while the second option considers some modification in the convection section of the primary reformer through a new arrangement of the heating coils. Thus, a considerable reduction in cooling water, HP steam and fuel gas consumption is achieved. In the cold section, retrofit study is dominated by reducing the amount of shaft work or power consumption in the refrigeration system. Application of the Combined Pinch and Exergy Analysis revealed that part of the shaft work, which was originally being used, was inefficient and could have been avoided in a well-integrated design. Therefore, by proposing optimum refrigeration levels, reasonable saving (15%) in power consumption was observed without the need for new investment

  18. Silicon-mediated Improvement in Plant Salinity Tolerance: The Role of Aquaporins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan J. Rios

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Silicon (Si is an abundant and differentially distributed element in soils that is believed to have important biological functions. However, the benefits of Si and its essentiality in plants are controversial due to differences among species in their ability to take up this element. Despite this, there is a consensus that the application of Si improves the water status of plants under abiotic stress conditions. Hence, plants treated with Si are able to maintain a high stomatal conductance and transpiration rate under salt stress, suggesting that a reduction in Na+ uptake occurs due to deposition of Si in the root. In addition, root hydraulic conductivity increases when Si is applied. As a result, a Si-mediated upregulation of aquaporin (PIP gene expression is observed in relation to increased root hydraulic conductivity and water uptake. Aquaporins of the subclass nodulin 26-like intrinsic proteins are further involved in allowing Si entry into the cell. Therefore, on the basis of available published results and recent developments, we propose a model to explain how Si absorption alleviates stress in plants grown under saline conditions through the conjugated action of different aquaporins.

  19. An improved electrochemiluminescence polymerase chain reaction method for highly sensitive detection of plant viruses

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tang Yabing; Xing Da; Zhu Debin; Liu Jinfeng

    2007-01-01

    Recently, we have reported an electrochemiluminescence polymerase chain reaction (ECL-PCR) method for detection of genetically modified organisms. The ECL-PCR method was further improved in the current study by introducing a multi-purpose nucleic acid sequence that was specific to the tris(bipyridine) ruthenium (TBR) labeled probe, into the 5' terminal of the primers. The method was applied to detect plant viruses. Conserved sequence of the plant viruses was amplified by PCR. The product was hybridized with a biotin labeled probe and a TBR labeled probe. The hybridization product was separated by streptavidin-coated magnetic beads, and detected by measuring the ECL signals of the TBR labeled. Under the optimized conditions, the experiment results show that the detection limit is 50 fmol of PCR products, and the signal-to-noise ratio is in excess of 14.6. The method was used to detect banana streak virus, banana bunchy top virus, and papaya leaf curl virus. The experiment results show that this method could reliably identity viruses infected plant samples. The improved ECL-PCR approach has higher sensitivity and lower cost than previous approach. It can effectively detect the plant viruses with simplicity, stability, and high sensitivity

  20. A comparison of improved power plant technologies on lignite with (PFBC) and (IGCC) cycles

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cherepnalkovski, Ilija

    1997-01-01

    Technologies and process diagrams descriptions for PFBC (Pressurised Fluidized Bed Combustion) and IGCC (Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle) are presented as for improved cycles with modern clean coal technologies, the most popular currently. A special attention is paid to the possibilities for Macedonian lignites use on the power plants with PFBC and IGCC cycles. The comparison of the above mention technologies has been done particularly on the desulfurization, NO x reduction, ash elimination and its use in the building and construction industries. A comparison between the power plants with PFBC and IGCC cycles is made by the following criteria: cycle efficiency, desulfurization and nitrogen oxides reduction, power plant complexity and their cost, as well as plant reliability. (Author)

  1. Improvement of date palm plant lets during rooting stage by silver ion

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sharaf, M.M.; Khamis, M.A.; El Bana, A.; Abd El Galeil, L.M.; Zaid, Z.E.

    2012-01-01

    This study aim to promote growth plant lets of date palm cv. Zaghlool by decreasing ethylene production inside the containers during rooting stage. Data obtained declared that three silver thiosulphate (STS) levels added to one half strength MS rooting medium improved significantly three rooting measurements (rooting percentage; number and length of developed root lets). However, the lightest STS level (0.25 ml/L of 4 mM STS solution) was the superior, while highest one (1.0 ml/L) was the inferior from statistical point of view. Data obtained displayed that providing MS rooting medium with silver nitrate improved 3 rooting measurements (rooting %; number of root lets and their length) for Zaghloul date palm shoot lets proliferated from somatic embryos. However, the 0.50 mg/L AgNO 3 provided MS medium was the most preferable in this concern. Plant lets were transferred to capped tubes contained 1/4 liquid MS medium through 3 weeks in the growth chamber (under aseptic condition). Ventilation was allowed gradually by punching holes in aluminum foil caps during first five days of 2 nd week. After then, the plant lets were transplanted in acclimatization green house on mixture from (peat moss + perlite + vermiculite at 1:1:1) and survival percentage was 75% after three months.

  2. Information management systems improve advanced plant design

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Turk, R.S.; Serafin, S.A.; Leckley, J.B.

    1994-01-01

    Computer-aided engineering tools are proving invaluable in both the design and operation of nuclear power plants. ABB Combustion Engineering's Advanced Light Water Reactor (ALWR) features a computerized Information Management System (IMS) as an integral part of the design. The System 80+IMS represents the most powerful information management tool for Nuclear Power Plants commercially available today. Developed by Duke Power Company specifically for use by nuclear power plant owner operators, the IMS consists of appropriate hardware and software to manage and control information flow for all plant related work or tasks in a systematic, consistent, coordinated and informative manner. A significant feature of this IMS is that it is primarily based on plant data. The principal design tool, PASCE (Plant Application and Systems from Combustion Engineering), is comprised of intelligent databases that describe the design and from which accurate plant drawings are created. Additionally the IMS includes, at its hub, a relational database management system and an associated document management system. The data-based approach and applications associated with the IMS were developed, and have proven highly effective, for plant modifications, configuration management, and operations and maintenance applications at Duke Power Company's operating nuclear plants. This paper presents its major features and benefits. 4 refs

  3. Plant probiotic bacteria Bacillus and Paraburkholderia improve growth, yield and content of antioxidants in strawberry fruit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rahman, Mosaddiqur; Sabir, Abdullah As; Mukta, Julakha Akter; Khan, Md Mohibul Alam; Mohi-Ud-Din, Mohammed; Miah, Md Giashuddin; Rahman, Mahfuzur; Islam, M Tofazzal

    2018-02-06

    Strawberry is an excellent source of natural antioxidants with high capacity of scavenging free radicals. This study evaluated the effects of two plant probiotic bacteria, Bacillus amylolequefaciens BChi1 and Paraburkholderia fungorum BRRh-4 on growth, fruit yield and antioxidant contents in strawberry fruits. Root dipping of seedlings (plug plants) followed by spray applications of both probiotic bacteria in the field on foliage significantly increased fruit yield (up to 48%) over non-treated control. Enhanced fruit yield likely to be linked with higher root and shoot growth, individual and total fruit weight/plant and production of phytohormone by the probiotic bacteria applied on plants. Interestingly, the fruits from plants inoculated with the isolates BChi1 and BRRh-4 had significantly higher contents of phenolics, carotenoids, flavonoids and anthocyanins over non-treated control. Total antioxidant activities were also significantly higher (p < 0.05) in fruits of strawberry plants treated with both probiotic bacteria. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of significant improvement of both yield and quality of strawberry fruits by the application of plant probiotic bacteria BChi1 and BRRh-4 in a field condition. Further study is needed to elucidate underlying mechanism of growth and quality improvement of strawberry fruits by probiotic bacteria.

  4. Overexpression of the PtSOS2 gene improves tolerance to salt stress in transgenic poplar plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Yang; Tang, Ren-Jie; Jiang, Chun-Mei; Li, Bei; Kang, Tao; Liu, Hua; Zhao, Nan; Ma, Xu-Jun; Yang, Lei; Chen, Shao-Liang; Zhang, Hong-Xia

    2015-09-01

    In higher plants, the salt overly sensitive (SOS) signalling pathway plays a crucial role in maintaining ion homoeostasis and conferring salt tolerance under salinity condition. Previously, we functionally characterized the conserved SOS pathway in the woody plant Populus trichocarpa. In this study, we demonstrate that overexpression of the constitutively active form of PtSOS2 (PtSOS2TD), one of the key components of this pathway, significantly increased salt tolerance in aspen hybrid clone Shanxin Yang (Populus davidiana × Populus bolleana). Compared to the wild-type control, transgenic plants constitutively expressing PtSOS2TD exhibited more vigorous growth and produced greater biomass in the presence of high concentrations of NaCl. The improved salt tolerance was associated with a decreased Na(+) accumulation in the leaves of transgenic plants. Further analyses revealed that plasma membrane Na(+) /H(+) exchange activity and Na(+) efflux in transgenic plants were significantly higher than those in the wild-type plants. Moreover, transgenic plants showed improved capacity in scavenging reactive oxygen species (ROS) generated by salt stress. Taken together, our results suggest that PtSOS2 could serve as an ideal target gene to genetically engineer salt-tolerant trees. © 2015 Society for Experimental Biology, Association of Applied Biologists and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  5. Evaluation and improvement of wastewater treatment plant performance using BioWin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oleyiblo, Oloche James; Cao, Jiashun; Feng, Qian; Wang, Gan; Xue, Zhaoxia; Fang, Fang

    2015-03-01

    In this study, the activated sludge model implemented in the BioWin® software was validated against full-scale wastewater treatment plant data. Only two stoichiometric parameters ( Y p/acetic and the heterotrophic yield ( Y H)) required calibration. The value 0.42 was used for Y p/acetic in this study, while the default value of the BioWin® software is 0.49, making it comparable with the default values of the corresponding parameter (yield of phosphorus release to substrate uptake ) used in ASM2, ASM2d, and ASM3P, respectively. Three scenarios were evaluated to improve the performance of the wastewater treatment plant, the possibility of wasting sludge from either the aeration tank or the secondary clarifier, the construction of a new oxidation ditch, and the construction of an equalization tank. The results suggest that construction of a new oxidation ditch or an equalization tank for the wastewater treatment plant is not necessary. However, sludge should be wasted from the aeration tank during wet weather to reduce the solids loading of the clarifiers and avoid effluent violations. Therefore, it is recommended that the design of wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) should include flexibility to operate the plants in various modes. This is helpful in selection of the appropriate operating mode when necessary, resulting in substantial reductions in operating costs.

  6. An Interpretation of Part of Gilbert Gottlieb's Legacy: Developmental Systems Theory Contra Developmental Behavior Genetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molenaar, Peter C. M.

    2015-01-01

    The main theme of this paper concerns the persistent critique of Gilbert Gottlieb on developmental behavior genetics and my reactions to this critique, the latter changing from rejection to complete acceptation. Concise characterizations of developmental behavior genetics, developmental systems theory (to which Gottlieb made essential…

  7. Nuclear power plant safety and reliability improvements derived from operational experience analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zebroski, E.L.; Rosen, S.L.

    1983-01-01

    The frequency and distribution of significant events at operating nuclear power plants can be used as one of several indices to obtain a preliminary indication of unit and/or utility performance in the development and implementation of improvements aimed at reducing the probability or consequences of troublesome events. Initial data of this type are presented along with qualifications on the validity of such indicators. Planned further steps to improve this as a performance indicator are noted

  8. Hexose kinases and their role in sugar-sensing and plant development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David eGranot

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Hexose sugars, such as glucose and fructose produced in plants, are ubiquitous in most organisms and are the origin of most of the organic matter found in nature. To be utilized, hexose sugars must first be phosphorylated. The central role of hexose-phosphorylating enzymes has attracted the attention of many researchers, leading to novel discoveries. Only two families of enzymes capable of phosphorylating glucose and fructose have been identified in plants; hexokinases (HXKs and fructokinases (FRKs. Intensive investigations of these two families in numerous plant species have yielded a wealth of knowledge regarding the genes number, enzymatic characterization, intracellular localization and developmental and physiological roles of several HXKs and FRKs. The emerging picture indicates that HXK and FRK enzymes found at specific intracellular locations play distinct roles in plant metabolism and development. Individual HXKs were shown for the first time to be dual-function enzymes - sensing sugar levels independent of their catalytic activity and also controlling gene expression and major developmental pathways, as well as hormonal interactions. FRK, on the other hand, seems to play a central metabolic role in vascular tissues, controlling the amounts of sugars allocated for vascular development. While a clearer picture of the roles of these two types of enzymes is emerging, many questions remain unsolved, such as the specific tissues and types of cells in which these enzymes function, the roles of individual HXK and FRK genes, and how these enzymes interact with hormones in the regulation of developmental processes. It is anticipated that ongoing efforts will broaden our knowledge of these important plant enzymes and their potential uses in the modification of plant traits.

  9. Dysmorphic features and developmental outcome of 2-year-old children

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Seggers, Jorien; Haadsma, Maaike L.; Bos, Arend F.; Heineman, Maas Jan; Middelburg, Karin J.; van den Heuvel, Edwin R.; Hadders-Algra, Mijna

    2014-01-01

    The aim of this study was to assess the associations between dysmorphic features and neurological, mental, psychomotor, and behavioural development in order to improve our understanding of aetiological pathways leading to minor developmental problems. In our cross-sectional study, 272 generally

  10. Effects of a parent-implemented Developmental Reciprocity Treatment Program for children with autism spectrum disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gengoux, Grace W; Schapp, Salena; Burton, Sarah; Ardel, Christina M; Libove, Robin A; Baldi, Gina; Berquist, Kari L; Phillips, Jennifer M; Hardan, Antonio Y

    2018-05-01

    Developmental approaches to autism treatment aim to establish strong interpersonal relationships through joint play. These approaches have emerging empirical support; however, there is a need for further research documenting the procedures and demonstrating their effectiveness. This pilot study evaluated changes in parent behavior and child autism symptoms following a 12-week Developmental Reciprocity Treatment parent-training program. A total of 22 children with autism spectrum disorder between 2 and 6 years (mean age = 44.6 months, standard deviation = 12.7) and a primary caregiver participated in 12 weekly sessions of Developmental Reciprocity Treatment parent training, covering topics including introduction to developmental approaches, supporting attention and motivation, sensory regulation and sensory-social routines, imitation/building nonverbal communication, functional language development, and turn taking. Results indicated improvement in aspects of parent empowerment and social quality of life. Improvement in core autism symptoms was observed on the Social Responsiveness Scale total score (F(1,19): 5.550, p = 0.029), MacArthur-Bates Communicative Development Inventories number of words produced out of 680 (F(1,18): 18.104, p = 0.000), and two subscales of the Repetitive Behavior Scale, Revised (compulsive, p = 0.046 and restricted, p = 0.025). No differences in sensory sensitivity were observed on the Short Sensory Profile. Findings from this pilot study indicate that Developmental Reciprocity Treatment shows promise and suggest the need for future controlled trials of this developmentally based intervention.

  11. Partnering with a local concrete block manufacturing plant to improve quality of construction materials in Haiti’s Central Plateau

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aaron Gordon

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a successful ongoing partnership between Clemson Engineers for Developing Countries (CEDC and a concrete masonry unit (CMU manufacturing plant in rural Haiti. The infrastructure destruction and resulting loss of life of the 2010 earthquake in Haiti highlighted the need for improved building materials and codes. This partnership has helped to improve the strength of CMUs in the plant, both creating a safer local built environment and expanding the economic opportunities for this plant. Using samples of aggregate and cement from the site in Haiti, students in Clemson performed experiments to optimise the CMU mix design and made other suggestions to improve efficiency and quality of their product. Consistency continues to be a challenge for the CMU plant, and this paper also describes proposed procedures to help the plant implement quality control and quality assurance plans.

  12. Kozloduy nuclear power plant. Units 1-4. Status of safety improvements. Rev. 2

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1999-01-01

    This paper presents the results of the safety improvements activities carried out by the Kozloduy Nuclear Power Plant (KNPP) within the period 1990-1998. The steam supply system of this units is based of the reactor WWER-440/ B-230, which is a PWR of russian design developed according to the safety standards in force in USSR in late sixties. Up to now 10 reactor units of this type are in operation in four NPPs. Despite of efforts of the different plants to implement safety improvements measures during first 10-15 years of operation of this type of reactor its major safety problems were not eliminated and were a subject of international concern. The systematic evaluation of the deficiencies of the original design of this type of reactors have been initiated by IAEA in the beginning of 1990 and brought to developing a comprehensive list of safety problems which required urgent implementation of safety measures in all plants. To solve this problems in 1991 KNPP initiated implementation of so called 'short term' safety improvement program, developed with the help of WANO under agreement with Bulgarian Nuclear Safety Authority (BNSA) and consortium RISKAUDIT. The program was based on a stage approach and was foreseen to be implemented by tree stages in very tight time schedule in order to achieve significant and rapid improvements of the level of safety in operation of the units. The Short term program was implemented between from 1991 to 1997 owing to strong safety commitment of NEC and KNPP staff as well as broad international cooperation and financial support. Important part of resources were supplied under PHARE program of CEC, EBRD grant agreement and EDF support. In parallel a special assessment process started in 1995 in order to evaluate the level of safety, achieved by Short Term Program, according to current safety standards and to define the measures, which should be implemented by the Utility to complete the process of improving the safety in future

  13. Interdisciplinary research and training program in the plant sciences

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wolk, C.P.

    1991-01-01

    This document is the compiled progress reports from the Interdisciplinary Research and Training Program in the Plant Sciences funded through the MSU-DOE Plant Research Laboratory. Fourteen reports are included, covering topics such as the molecular basis of plant/microbe symbiosis, cell wall proteins and assembly, gene expression, stress responses, growth regulator biosynthesis, interaction between nuclear and organelle genomes, sensory transduction and tropisms, intracellular sorting and membrane trafficking, regulation of lipid metabolism, the molecular basis of disease resistance and plant pathogenesis, developmental biology of Cyanobacteria and hormonal involvement in environmental control of plant growth. 132 refs. (MHB)

  14. Improving energy efficiency of cyclone circuits in coal beneficiation plants by pump-storage systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhang, Lijun; Xia, Xiaohua; Zhang, Jiangfeng

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • A pump-storage system (PSS) is introduced in a coal washing plant to reduce energy consumption and cost. • Optimal operation of the PSS under TOU tariff is formulated and solved. Life cycle cost analysis of the design is done. • Simulation results show the effectiveness of energy efficiency improvement and load shifting effect of the proposed approach. • An annual 38% reduction of overall cost of the coal washing plant with 2.86 years payback period is achieved. • Capacity improvement of power plants contracted to the coal mine is expected as less electricity is required to get fuel. - Abstract: A pump storage system (PSS) is introduced to the coal preparation dense medium cyclone (DMC) plants to improve their energy efficiency while maintaining the required medium supply. The DMC processes are very energy intensive and inefficient because the medium supply pumps are constantly over-pumping. The PSS presented is to reduce energy consumption and cost by introducing an addition medium circulation loop. The corresponding pump operation optimization problem in the PSS scheme under time-based electricity tariff is formulated and solved, based on which the financial benefits of the design is investigated using life cycle cost analysis. A case study based on the operation status of a South African coal mine is carried out to verify the effectiveness of the proposed approach. It is demonstrated that the energy cost can be reduced by more than 50% in the studied case by introducing a 160 m 3 storage tank. According to life cycle analysis, the PSS Option 1 yields an annual 38% reduction of the overall cost for the beneficiation plant with a payback period of 2.68 years

  15. Morphometric analysis of human embryos to predict developmental competence

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ziebe, Søren

    2013-01-01

    pregnancy test, no matter what we choose in the laboratory. Still, both with the increasing complexity of infertile patients treated today and the important focus on reducing multiple pregnancies, it becomes increasingly important to improve our ability to predict the developmental competence of each embryo....... This involves an improved understanding of the basic biology controlling early embryonic development and, over the years, many groups have tried to identify parameters reflecting embryonic competence....

  16. A roadmap for the integration of culture into developmental psychopathology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Causadias, José M

    2013-11-01

    In this paper, I propose a roadmap for the integration of culture in developmental psychopathology. This integration is pressing because culture continues to be somewhat disconnected from theory, research, training, and interventions in developmental psychopathology, thus limiting our understanding of the epigenesis of mental health. I argue that in order to successfully integrate culture into developmental psychopathology, it is crucial to (a) study cultural development, (b) consider both individual-level and social-level cultural processes, (c) examine the interplay between culture and biology, and (d) promote improved and direct cultural assessment. I provide evidence in support of each of these guidelines, present alternative conceptual frameworks, and suggest new lines of research. Hopefully, that these directions will contribute to the emerging field of cultural development and psychopathology, which focuses on the elucidation of the cultural processes that initiate, maintain, or derail trajectories of normal and abnormal behavior.

  17. [Neuropsychomotor developmental delay: conceptual map, term definitions, uses and limitations].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dornelas, Lílian de Fátima; Duarte, Neuza Maria de Castro; Magalhães, Lívia de Castro

    2015-01-01

    To retrieve the origin of the term neuropsychomotor developmental delay" (NPMD), its conceptual evolution over time, and to build a conceptual map based on literature review. A literature search was performed in the SciELO Brazil, Web of Science, Science Direct, OneFile (GALE), Pubmed (Medline), Whiley Online, and Springer databases, from January of 1940 to January of 2013, using the following keywords NPMD delay, NPMD retardation, developmental delay, and global developmental delay. A total of 71 articles were selected, which were used to build the conceptual map of the term. Of the 71 references, 55 were international and 16 national. The terms developmental delay and global developmental delay were the most frequently used in the international literature and, in Brazil, delayed NPMD was the most often used. The term developmental delay emerged in the mid 1940s, gaining momentum in the 1990 s. In Brazil, the term delayed NPMD started to be used in the 1980s, and has been frequently cited and published in the literature. Delayed development was a characteristic of 13 morbidities described in 23 references. Regarding the type of use, 19 references were found, with seven forms of use. Among the references, 34 had definitions of the term, and 16 different concepts were identified. Developmental delay is addressed in the international and national literature under different names, various applications, and heterogeneous concepts. Internationally, ways to improve communication between professionals have been indicated, with standardized definition of the term and use in very specific situations up to the fifth year of life, which was not found in Brazilian publications. Copyright © 2014 Associação de Pediatria de São Paulo. Publicado por Elsevier Editora Ltda. All rights reserved.

  18. Mapping the Developmental Constraints on Working Memory Span Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bayliss, Donna M.; Jarrold, Christopher; Baddeley, Alan D.; Gunn, Deborah M.; Leigh, Eleanor

    2004-01-01

    This study investigated the constraints underlying developmental improvements in complex working memory span performance among 120 children of between 6 and 10 years of age. Independent measures of processing efficiency, storage capacity, rehearsal speed, and basic speed of processing were assessed to determine their contribution to age-related…

  19. Experience with developmental facial paralysis: part II. Outcomes of reconstruction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terzis, Julia K; Anesti, Katerina

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to document the 30-year experience of the authors' center in the management of developmental facial paralysis and to analyze the outcomes of microsurgical reconstruction. Forty-two cases of developmental facial paralysis were identified in a retrospective clinical review (1980 to 2010); 34 (80.95 percent) were children (age, 8 ± 6 years) and eight (19.05 percent) were adults (age, 27 ± 12 years). Comparisons between preoperative and postoperative results were performed with electrophysiologic studies and video evaluations by three independent observers. Mean follow-up was 8 ± 6.3 years (range, 1 to 23 years). Overall, outcome scores improved in all of the patients, as was evident from the observers' mean scores (preoperatively, 2.44; 2 years postoperatively, 3.66; final, 4.11; p children as compared with adults (p children with developmental facial paralysis and reduces the prevalence of aesthetic and functional sequelae of the condition, thus facilitating reintegration among their peers. The experience of this center should serve as a framework for the establishment of accurate and reliable guidelines that will facilitate early diagnosis and management of developmental facial paralysis and provide support and counseling to the family.

  20. Qualitative methodology in developmental psychology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Demuth, Carolin; Mey, Günter

    2015-01-01

    Qualitative methodology presently is gaining increasing recognition in developmental psychology. Although the founders of developmental psychology to a large extent already used qualitative procedures, the field was long dominated by a (post) positivistic quantitative paradigm. The increasing rec...... in qualitative research offers a promising avenue to advance the field in this direction.......Qualitative methodology presently is gaining increasing recognition in developmental psychology. Although the founders of developmental psychology to a large extent already used qualitative procedures, the field was long dominated by a (post) positivistic quantitative paradigm. The increasing...

  1. Virtual Plant Tissue: Building Blocks for Next-Generation Plant Growth Simulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dirk De Vos

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Motivation: Computational modeling of plant developmental processes is becoming increasingly important. Cellular resolution plant tissue simulators have been developed, yet they are typically describing physiological processes in an isolated way, strongly delimited in space and time.Results: With plant systems biology moving toward an integrative perspective on development we have built the Virtual Plant Tissue (VPTissue package to couple functional modules or models in the same framework and across different frameworks. Multiple levels of model integration and coordination enable combining existing and new models from different sources, with diverse options in terms of input/output. Besides the core simulator the toolset also comprises a tissue editor for manipulating tissue geometry and cell, wall, and node attributes in an interactive manner. A parameter exploration tool is available to study parameter dependence of simulation results by distributing calculations over multiple systems.Availability: Virtual Plant Tissue is available as open source (EUPL license on Bitbucket (https://bitbucket.org/vptissue/vptissue. The project has a website https://vptissue.bitbucket.io.

  2. Ambient temperature and genotype differentially affect developmental and phenotypic plasticity in Arabidopsis thaliana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ibañez, Carla; Poeschl, Yvonne; Peterson, Tom; Bellstädt, Julia; Denk, Kathrin; Gogol-Döring, Andreas; Quint, Marcel; Delker, Carolin

    2017-07-06

    Global increase in ambient temperatures constitute a significant challenge to wild and cultivated plant species. Forward genetic analyses of individual temperature-responsive traits have resulted in the identification of several signaling and response components. However, a comprehensive knowledge about temperature sensitivity of different developmental stages and the contribution of natural variation is still scarce and fragmented at best. Here, we systematically analyze thermomorphogenesis throughout a complete life cycle in ten natural Arabidopsis thaliana accessions grown under long day conditions in four different temperatures ranging from 16 to 28 °C. We used Q 10 , GxE, phenotypic divergence and correlation analyses to assess temperature sensitivity and genotype effects of more than 30 morphometric and developmental traits representing five phenotype classes. We found that genotype and temperature differentially affected plant growth and development with variing strengths. Furthermore, overall correlations among phenotypic temperature responses was relatively low which seems to be caused by differential capacities for temperature adaptations of individual accessions. Genotype-specific temperature responses may be attractive targets for future forward genetic approaches and accession-specific thermomorphogenesis maps may aid the assessment of functional relevance of known and novel regulatory components.

  3. Attentional networks in developmental dyscalculia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henik Avishai

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Very little is known about attention deficits in developmental dyscalculia, hence, this study was designed to provide the missing information. We examined attention abilities of participants suffering from developmental dyscalculia using the attention networks test - interactions. This test was designed to examine three different attention networks--executive function, orienting and alerting--and the interactions between them. Methods Fourteen university students that were diagnosed as suffering from developmental dyscalculia--intelligence and reading abilities in the normal range and no indication of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder--and 14 matched controls were tested using the attention networks test - interactions. All participants were given preliminary tests to measure mathematical abilities, reading, attention and intelligence. Results The results revealed deficits in the alerting network--a larger alerting effect--and in the executive function networks--a larger congruity effect in developmental dyscalculia participants. The interaction between the alerting and executive function networks was also modulated by group. In addition, developmental dyscalculia participants were slower to respond in the non-cued conditions. Conclusions These results imply specific attentional deficits in pure developmental dyscalculia. Namely, those with developmental dyscalculia seem to be deficient in the executive function and alertness networks. They suffer from difficulty in recruiting attention, in addition to the deficits in numerical processing.

  4. Attentional networks in developmental dyscalculia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Askenazi, Sarit; Henik, Avishai

    2010-01-07

    Very little is known about attention deficits in developmental dyscalculia, hence, this study was designed to provide the missing information. We examined attention abilities of participants suffering from developmental dyscalculia using the attention networks test - interactions. This test was designed to examine three different attention networks--executive function, orienting and alerting--and the interactions between them. Fourteen university students that were diagnosed as suffering from developmental dyscalculia--intelligence and reading abilities in the normal range and no indication of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder--and 14 matched controls were tested using the attention networks test-interactions. All participants were given preliminary tests to measure mathematical abilities, reading, attention and intelligence. The results revealed deficits in the alerting network--a larger alerting effect--and in the executive function networks--a larger congruity effect in developmental dyscalculia participants. The interaction between the alerting and executive function networks was also modulated by group. In addition, developmental dyscalculia participants were slower to respond in the non-cued conditions. These results imply specific attentional deficits in pure developmental dyscalculia. Namely, those with developmental dyscalculia seem to be deficient in the executive function and alertness networks. They suffer from difficulty in recruiting attention, in addition to the deficits in numerical processing.

  5. Genetic engineering of cytokinin metabolism: prospective way to improve agricultural traits of crop plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zalabák, David; Pospíšilová, Hana; Šmehilová, Mária; Mrízová, Katarína; Frébort, Ivo; Galuszka, Petr

    2013-01-01

    Cytokinins (CKs) are ubiquitous phytohormones that participate in development, morphogenesis and many physiological processes throughout plant kingdom. In higher plants, mutants and transgenic cells and tissues with altered activity of CK metabolic enzymes or perception machinery, have highlighted their crucial involvement in different agriculturally important traits, such as productivity, increased tolerance to various stresses and overall plant morphology. Furthermore, recent precise metabolomic analyses have elucidated the specific occurrence and distinct functions of different CK types in various plant species. Thus, smooth manipulation of active CK levels in a spatial and temporal way could be a very potent tool for plant biotechnology in the future. This review summarises recent advances in cytokinin research ranging from transgenic alteration of CK biosynthetic, degradation and glucosylation activities and CK perception to detailed elucidation of molecular processes, in which CKs work as a trigger in model plants. The first attempts to improve the quality of crop plants, focused on cereals are discussed, together with proposed mechanism of action of the responses involved. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Developmental Scaffolding

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Giorgi, Franco; Bruni, Luis Emilio

    2015-01-01

    . Within the developmental hierarchy, each module yields an inter-level relationship that makes it possible for the scaffolding to mediate the production of selectable variations. Awide range of genetic, cellular and morphological mechanisms allows the scaffolding to integrate these modular variations...... to the complexity of sign recognition proper of a cellular community. In this semiotic perspective, the apparent goal directness of any developmental strategy should no longer be accounted for by a predetermined genetic program, but by the gradual definition of the relationships selected amongst the ones...

  7. Chromosomal microarrays testing in children with developmental disabilities and congenital anomalies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guillermo Lay-Son

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available OBJECTIVES: Clinical use of microarray-based techniques for the analysis of many developmental disorders has emerged during the last decade. Thus, chromosomal microarray has been positioned as a first-tier test. This study reports the first experience in a Chilean cohort. METHODS: Chilean patients with developmental disabilities and congenital anomalies were studied with a high-density microarray (CytoScan(tm HD Array, Affymetrix, Inc., Santa Clara, CA, USA. Patients had previous cytogenetic studies with either a normal result or a poorly characterized anomaly. RESULTS: This study tested 40 patients selected by two or more criteria, including: major congenital anomalies, facial dysmorphism, developmental delay, and intellectual disability. Copy number variants (CNVs were found in 72.5% of patients, while a pathogenic CNV was found in 25% of patients and a CNV of uncertain clinical significance was found in 2.5% of patients. CONCLUSION: Chromosomal microarray analysis is a useful and powerful tool for diagnosis of developmental diseases, by allowing accurate diagnosis, improving the diagnosis rate, and discovering new etiologies. The higher cost is a limitation for widespread use in this setting.

  8. Psychotherapy with people with developmental disabilities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barbara Zafošnik

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available People with developmental disabilities can experience any psychological abnormalitiy and psychiatric illness as do people without developmental disabilities. Due to different diagnostic criteria, assessment procedures and instruments, we lack definite prevalence rates for people with developmental disabilities, also suffering from mental health problems, eventhough most studies place the rate at 20 to 40%. One of the possible treatment alternatives for augmenting psychological well-being is psychotherapy, but is extremely rarely used for people with severe and profound disabilities, where speech cannot be the main therapeutic medium. So, those that are included in the psychotherapuetic process are predominantly clients with mild developmental disabilities, and they are mostly in cognitive-behavioral therapy. Recently, two models of (psychotherapy for persons with severe and profound developmental disabilities were developed: developmental-dynamic relationship therapy and attachment-based behaviour therapy for children. Conceptually, they both originate form developmental psychoanalytic theories.

  9. A novel gene of Kalanchoe daigremontiana confers plant drought resistance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Li; Zhu, Chen; Jin, Lin; Xiao, Aihua; Duan, Jie; Ma, Luyi

    2018-02-07

    Kalanchoe (K.) daigremontiana is important for studying asexual reproduction under different environmental conditions. Here, we describe a novel KdNOVEL41 (KdN41) gene that may confer drought resistance and could thereby affect K. daigremontiana development. The detected subcellular localization of a KdN41/Yellow Fluorescent Protein (YFP) fusion protein was in the nucleus and cell membrane. Drought, salt, and heat stress treatment in tobacco plants containing the KdN41 gene promoter driving β-glucuronidase (GUS) gene transcription revealed that only drought stress triggered strong GUS staining in the vascular tissues. Overexpression (OE) of the KdN41 gene conferred improved drought resistance in tobacco plants compared to wild-type and transformed with empty vector plants by inducing higher antioxidant enzyme activities, decreasing cell membrane damage, increasing abscisic acid (ABA) content, causing reinforced drought resistance related gene expression profiles. The 3,3'-diaminobenzidine (DAB) and nitroblue tetrazolium (NBT) staining results also showed less relative oxygen species (ROS) content in KdN41-overexpressing tobacco leaf during drought stress. Surprisingly, by re-watering after drought stress, KdN41-overexpressing tobacco showed earlier flowering. Overall, the KdN41 gene plays roles in ROS scavenging and osmotic damage reduction to improve tobacco drought resistance, which may increase our understanding of the molecular network involved in developmental manipulation under drought stress in K. daigremontiana.

  10. Improvement in the bioenergetics system of plants under metal stress environment via seaweeds

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Azmat, R.; Askari, S.

    2015-01-01

    The effects of Hg and its remediation through seaweeds on seedlings were escorted in a greenhouse experiment in a randomized block design. The effects of Hg were monitored in relation with bioenergetics system of Trigonella foenumgraecum plant at test site scale. Plants that were exposed to Hg, showed affect in diverse ways, including affinity to suffer in morphological as well as on sugar metabolism. The stress imposed by Hg exposure also extends to chloroplast pigments that lead to the distorted photosynthetic apparatus. The outcomes of reduced contents of photosynthetic machinery related with reduced contents of glucose, sucrose, total soluble sugars and carbohydrate contents of plants. These contents plays vital rule for providing bioenergy to the plant growth regulation. It was suggested that Hg is lethal for plant bioenergetics system due to which plants fail to survive under stress. The lethal effects of Hg were tried to remediate through green seaweeds (Codium iyengrii). It was observed that seaweeds successfully controlled the mobility of Hg metal and improves the plant growth regulatory system at lower applied dose only. While at higher dose of Hg, seaweeds were also effective but to a certain limits. It was established that continuous addition of Hg in soil and aquatic resources execute to the plant productivity. It is demand of time to develop alternative eco-friendly remediation technologies for controlling, cleaning Hg-polluted zones. (author)

  11. Mutation breeding in sorghum (sorghum bicolor L.) for improving plant as ruminant feed

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    H, Soeranto

    1998-01-01

    Mutation breeding using gamma irradiation in sorghum was aimed at improving the quality and production of sorghum plant as ruminant feed. Seeds of local sorghum variety Keris with moisture of about 14% were irradiated with gamma rays from Cobalt-60 source using the dose levels up to 0.5 kgy. The MI plant were grown in Pasar Jumat, the M2 and M3 were grown in Citayam experimental station. The M2 plants were harvested 40 days after sowing by cutting plants 20 cm above ground surface. Two weeks later observations for the ability of plants to produce new buds (buds variable). The plants green products in green products in from of their dry weight (product variable) were collected 40 days after harvesting and drying process in oven at 105 0 C for 24 hours. Plant selections with intensity of 20% were done for the bud variable among samples of M2 plants. Selection responses in the M3 were found to vary from the lowest at 0.5 kgy population (R s = 0.8507). The share of genetic factors to selection responses in bud variable varied from 7.25% at 0,5 kgy population to 22.35% at 0.3 kgy population. Selection for bud variable gave directly impact in increasing product variable in the M3. (author)

  12. Dysmorphic features and developmental outcome of 2-year-old children

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Seggers, Jorien; Haadsma, Maaike L.; Bos, Arend F.; Heineman, Maas Jan; Middelburg, Karin J.; Van den Heuvel, Edwin R.; Hadders-Algra, Mijna

    2014-01-01

    AimThe aim of this study was to assess the associations between dysmorphic features and neurological, mental, psychomotor, and behavioural development in order to improve our understanding of aetiological pathways leading to minor developmental problems. MethodIn our cross-sectional study, 272

  13. Developmental abnormalities of mid and hindbrain: A study of 23 ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Introduction: With the advent of neuroimaging modalities specifically, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), recognition of developmental defects of posterior fossa has greatly improved. The Aim: Is to delineate the clinical, cytogenetics and radiological features of patients with mid-hindbrain anomalies. Patient and Methods: ...

  14. Plant-based raw material: Improved food quality for better nutrition via plant genomics

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Meer, van der I.M.; Bovy, A.G.; Bosch, H.J.

    2001-01-01

    Plants form the basis of the human food chain. Characteristics of plants are therefore crucial to the quantity and quality of human food. In this review, it is discussed how technological developments in the area of plant genomics and plant genetics help to mobilise the potential of plants to

  15. Research needs and improvement of standards for nuclear power plant design

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chen, C.; Moreadith, F.L.

    1978-01-01

    The need for research and improvement of code requirements, for both economy and safety reasons is discussed for the following topics relevant to nuclear power plant structural analysis: Earthquake definition; dynamic behavior of reinforced concrete structures under impact loads; design for postulated pipe rupture; code requirements for loading combinations for concrete structures, reinforcing steel splicing, reinforced concrete structural design for thermal effects. (Auth.)

  16. Improvement of maintenance engineering using plant network and personal digital assistant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Otani, Yohei; Hasegawa, Takeshi; Hoshino, Masateru; Kato, Takahisa; Yokoi, Miki

    2015-01-01

    Toshiba has developed and adopted wired and/or wireless maintenance network at nuclear power plant in cooperate with industry. Toshiba also developed a tablet PC based field testing tool that enables to display test procedures and record test results in the field to improve the efficiency of such testing. Recently, we have adopted remote desktop protocol that enables to support the operator. (author)

  17. Plant growth control by light spectrum

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ieperen, van W.

    2016-01-01

    Plants are sessile organisms that have to cope with their environment as it is exposed to them in nature. To do so, they developed systems to sense environmental signals and to integrate these with endogenous developmental programs. As a result, they are well equipped to survive and flourish in

  18. Dual Processes in Decision Making and Developmental Neuroscience: A Fuzzy-Trace Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reyna, Valerie F.; Brainerd, Charles J.

    2011-01-01

    From Piaget to the present, traditional and dual-process theories have predicted improvement in reasoning from childhood to adulthood, and improvement has been observed. However, developmental reversals--that reasoning biases emerge with development--have also been observed in a growing list of paradigms. We explain how fuzzy-trace theory predicts…

  19. Improving nuclear power plant safety through operator aids

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1987-12-01

    In October 1986, the IAEA convened a one-week Technical Committee Meeting on Improving Nuclear Power Plant Safety Through Operator Aids. The term ''operator aid'' or more formally ''operator support system'' refers to a class of devices designed to be added to a nuclear power plant control station to assist an operator in performing his job and thereby decrease the probability of operator error. The addition of a carefully planned and designed operator aid should result in an increase in nuclear power plant safety and reliability. Operator aids encompass a wide range of devices from the very simple, such as color coding a display to distinguish it out of a group of similar displays, to the very complex, such as a computer-generated video display which concentrates a number of scattered indicator readings located around a control room into a concise display in front of the operator. This report provides guidelines and information to help make a decision as to whether an operator aid is needed, what kinds of operator aids are available and whether it should be purchased or developed by the utility. In addition, a discussion is presented on advanced operator aids to provide information on what may become available in the future. The broad scope of these guidelines makes it most suitable for use by a multi-disciplinary team. The document consists of two parts. The recommendations and results of the meeting discussions are given in the first part. The second part is the annex where the papers presented at the Technical Committee Meeting are printed. A separate abstract was prepared for each of the 10 papers. Refs, figs and tabs

  20. Co-overexpressing a Plasma Membrane and a Vacuolar Membrane Sodium/Proton Antiporter Significantly Improves Salt Tolerance in Transgenic Arabidopsis Plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pehlivan, Necla; Sun, Li; Jarrett, Philip; Yang, Xiaojie; Mishra, Neelam; Chen, Lin; Kadioglu, Asim; Shen, Guoxin; Zhang, Hong

    2016-05-01

    The Arabidopsis gene AtNHX1 encodes a vacuolar membrane-bound sodium/proton (Na(+)/H(+)) antiporter that transports Na(+) into the vacuole and exports H(+) into the cytoplasm. The Arabidopsis gene SOS1 encodes a plasma membrane-bound Na(+)/H(+) antiporter that exports Na(+) to the extracellular space and imports H(+) into the plant cell. Plants rely on these enzymes either to keep Na(+) out of the cell or to sequester Na(+) into vacuoles to avoid the toxic level of Na(+) in the cytoplasm. Overexpression of AtNHX1 or SOS1 could improve salt tolerance in transgenic plants, but the improved salt tolerance is limited. NaCl at concentration >200 mM would kill AtNHX1-overexpressing or SOS1-overexpressing plants. Here it is shown that co-overexpressing AtNHX1 and SOS1 could further improve salt tolerance in transgenic Arabidopsis plants, making transgenic Arabidopsis able to tolerate up to 250 mM NaCl treatment. Furthermore, co-overexpression of AtNHX1 and SOS1 could significantly reduce yield loss caused by the combined stresses of heat and salt, confirming the hypothesis that stacked overexpression of two genes could substantially improve tolerance against multiple stresses. This research serves as a proof of concept for improving salt tolerance in other plants including crops. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Japanese Society of Plant Physiologists.

  1. Suggested improvements for the allergenicity assessment of genetically modified plants used in foods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goodman, Richard E; Tetteh, Afua O

    2011-08-01

    Genetically modified (GM) plants are increasingly used for food production and industrial applications. As the global population has surpassed 7 billion and per capita consumption rises, food production is challenged by loss of arable land, changing weather patterns, and evolving plant pests and disease. Previous gains in quantity and quality relied on natural or artificial breeding, random mutagenesis, increased pesticide and fertilizer use, and improved farming techniques, all without a formal safety evaluation. However, the direct introduction of novel genes raised questions regarding safety that are being addressed by an evaluation process that considers potential increases in the allergenicity, toxicity, and nutrient availability of foods derived from the GM plants. Opinions vary regarding the adequacy of the assessment, but there is no documented proof of an adverse effect resulting from foods produced from GM plants. This review and opinion discusses current practices and new regulatory demands related to food safety.

  2. Novel enabling technologies of gene isolation and plant transformation for improved crop protection

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Torok, Tamas

    2013-02-04

    Meeting the needs of agricultural producers requires the continued development of improved transgenic crop protection products. The completed project focused on developing novel enabling technologies of gene discovery and plant transformation to facilitate the generation of such products.

  3. Staying Tight: Plasmodesmal Membrane Contact Sites and the Control of Cell-to-Cell Connectivity in Plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tilsner, Jens; Nicolas, William; Rosado, Abel; Bayer, Emmanuelle M

    2016-04-29

    Multicellularity differs in plants and animals in that the cytoplasm, plasma membrane, and endomembrane of plants are connected between cells through plasmodesmal pores. Plasmodesmata (PDs) are essential for plant life and serve as conduits for the transport of proteins, small RNAs, hormones, and metabolites during developmental and defense signaling. They are also the only pathways available for viruses to spread within plant hosts. The membrane organization of PDs is unique, characterized by the close apposition of the endoplasmic reticulum and the plasma membrane and spoke-like filamentous structures linking the two membranes, which define PDs as membrane contact sites (MCSs). This specialized membrane arrangement is likely critical for PD function. Here, we review how PDs govern developmental and defensive signaling in plants, compare them with other types of MCSs, and discuss in detail the potential functional significance of the MCS nature of PDs.

  4. The Green Roof Microbiome: Improving Plant Survival for Ecosystem Service Delivery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roberta Fulthorpe

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Plants are key contributors to ecosystem services delivered by green roofs in cities including stormwater capture, temperature regulation, and wildlife habitat. As a result, current research has primarily focused on their growth in relationship to extensive green roof (e.g., substrates <15 cm depth ecosystem services. Green roofs are exposed to a variety of harsh abiotic factors such as intense solar radiation, wind, and isolation from ground-level habitats, making survival exceedingly difficult. Plants in natural habitats benefit from a variety of interactions with fungi and bacteria. These plant-microbial interactions improve mechanisms of survival and productivity; however, many green roof substrates are sterilized prior to installation and lack microbial communities with unstudied consequences for green roof plant health and subsequent survival and performance. In this paper, we present six hypotheses on the positive role of microbes in green roof applications. In natural and experimental systems, microbial interactions have been linked to plant (1 drought tolerance, (2 pathogen protection, (3 nutrient availability, (4 salt tolerance, (5 phytohormone production, and (6 substrate stabilization, all of which are desirable properties of green roof ecosystems. As few studies exist that directly examine these relationships on green roofs, we explore the existing ecological literature on these topics to unravel the mechanisms that could support more complex green roof ecosystem and lead to new insight into the design, performance, and broader applications in green infrastructure.

  5. Improved methods for irrigation and planting of major crops in waterlogged areas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kahlown, M.A.; Iqbal, M.; Raoof, A.

    2002-01-01

    The improved irrigation methods for wheat and cotton were evaluated in the fordwah Eastern Sadigia (South) Irrigation and Drainage Project area, during 1996-97 and 1997-98 cropping seasons, under three water table depths. Irrigation methods for wheat included 70, 95 and 120 cm Beds, with Flat Basin, as a check for comparative evaluation. Cotton had Ridge-planting on the top and side, Bed and Furrow, and Flat Basin as control. These irrigation methods were compared at water table depths of < 1 m, 1-2 and 2-3 m. The wheat variety inqalab-91, and cotton cultivar, CIM-109, were planted during the 3rd week of November and May every year. All the inputs and management practices, such as seed-rate, fertilizer, seeding method, weed control, plant-protection measures, etc. were kept common. The results on cotton indicated maximum water-use efficiency with the Bed and Furrow Method of irrigation Followed by ridge planting. The traditional Flat-planting had the lowest yield and the highest water-consumption, resulting in the minimum water-use efficiency. In harmony with cotton, the Flat Method of planting had maximum water-consumption. For wheat crop, the water-use efficiency was in descending order, with 120, 95 and 70 cm for Bed and Flat Methods. Bed planting of 95 cm had a fairly high water-use efficiency and yields were more were more comparable than Flat planting. This method had a high level of adaptabilities, especially when the groundwater was close to the root-zone and higher possibilities, especially when the groundwater was close to the root-zone and higher possibility of crop-submergence are existent during rainy spells. The results of the investigation strongly favoured the Bed and furrow methods to irrigate cotton and wheat. However, under well-drained soil conditions, Bed planting of wheat is not recommended. (author)

  6. Near-term improvements for nuclear power plant control room annunciator systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rankin, W.L.; Duvernoy, E.G.; Ames, K.R.; Morgenstern, M.H.; Eckenrode, R.J.

    1983-04-01

    This report sets forth a basic design philosophy with its associated functional criteria and design principles for present-day, hard-wired annunciator systems in the control rooms of nuclear power plants. It also presents a variety of annunciator design features that are either necessary for or useful to the implementation of the design philosophy. The information contained in this report is synthesized from an extensive literature review, from inspection and analysis of control room annunciator systems in the nuclear industry and in related industries, and from discussions with a variety of individuals who are knowledgeable about annunciator systems, nuclear plant control rooms, or both. This information should help licensees and license applicants in improving their hard-wired, control room annunciator systems as outlined by NUREG-0700

  7. Biogenic volatile organic compound emissions from senescent maize leaves and a comparison with other leaf developmental stages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mozaffar, A.; Schoon, N.; Bachy, A.; Digrado, A.; Heinesch, B.; Aubinet, M.; Fauconnier, M.-L.; Delaplace, P.; du Jardin, P.; Amelynck, C.

    2018-03-01

    Plants are the major source of Biogenic Volatile Organic Compounds (BVOCs) which have a large influence on atmospheric chemistry and the climate system. Therefore, understanding of BVOC emissions from all abundant plant species at all developmental stages is very important. Nevertheless, investigations on BVOC emissions from even the most widespread agricultural crop species are rare and mainly confined to the healthy green leaves. Senescent leaves of grain crop species could be an important source of BVOCs as almost all the leaves senesce on the field before being harvested. For these reasons, BVOC emission measurements have been performed on maize (Zea mays L.), one of the most cultivated crop species in the world, at all the leaf developmental stages. The measurements were performed in controlled environmental conditions using dynamic enclosures and proton transfer reaction mass spectrometry (PTR-MS). The main compounds emitted by senescent maize leaves were methanol (31% of the total cumulative BVOC emission on a mass of compound basis) and acetic acid (30%), followed by acetaldehyde (11%), hexenals (9%) and m/z 59 compounds (acetone/propanal) (7%). Important differences were observed in the temporal emission profiles of the compounds, and both yellow leaves during chlorosis and dry brown leaves after chlorosis were identified as important senescence-related BVOC sources. Total cumulative BVOC emissions from senescent maize leaves were found to be among the highest for senescent Poaceae plant species. BVOC emission rates varied strongly among the different leaf developmental stages, and senescent leaves showed a larger diversity of emitted compounds than leaves at earlier stages. Methanol was the compound with the highest emissions for all the leaf developmental stages and the contribution from the young-growing, mature, and senescent stages to the total methanol emission by a typical maize leaf was 61, 13, and 26%, respectively. This study shows that BVOC

  8. Safety improvements at Canadian nuclear power plants in the aftermath of Fukushima accident

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rzentkowski, G.; Khouaja, H.

    2014-01-01

    This paper describes the safety review of operating nuclear power plants undertaken by the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission in light of the March 11, 2011 accident at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plants (NPPs). The review confirmed that the Canadian NPPs are robust and have a strong design relying on multiple layers of defence to protect the public from credible external events. Nevertheless, in the spirit of continuous safety improvements, the review identified a number of recommendations to further strengthen reactor defence-in-depth in preventing and mitigating the consequences of beyond design basis accidents, enhance onsite and offsite emergency response, and improve the CNSC regulatory framework. Progress achieved to date, in implementing these measures, is described in this paper along with a summary of safety benefits for each level of the reactor defence-in-depth. (author)

  9. Safety improvements at Canadian nuclear power plants in the aftermath of Fukushima accident

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rzentkowski, G.; Khouaja, H. [Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, Ottawa, ON (Canada)

    2014-07-01

    This paper describes the safety review of operating nuclear power plants undertaken by the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission in light of the March 11, 2011 accident at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plants (NPPs). The review confirmed that the Canadian NPPs are robust and have a strong design relying on multiple layers of defence to protect the public from credible external events. Nevertheless, in the spirit of continuous safety improvements, the review identified a number of recommendations to further strengthen reactor defence-in-depth in preventing and mitigating the consequences of beyond design basis accidents, enhance onsite and offsite emergency response, and improve the CNSC regulatory framework. Progress achieved to date, in implementing these measures, is described in this paper along with a summary of safety benefits for each level of the reactor defence-in-depth. (author)

  10. Use of visualization technology to improve decision-making performance in nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hanes, Lewis F.; Naser, Joseph

    2005-01-01

    This paper contains a description of modern 2.5-D and 3-D visualization technology that may be applied to improve human situation awareness and decision-making in nuclear power plants. Visualization technology is being applied widely and successfully in several industries. Examples are presented of successful applications in the military, aviation, medical, entertainment, and nuclear industries. Additional opportunities are identified in the nuclear industry that may benefit from improved visualization

  11. Main Effect QTL with Dominance Determines Heterosis for Dynamic Plant Height in Upland Cotton

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lianguang Shang

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Plant height, which shows dynamic development and heterosis, is a major trait affecting plant architecture and has an indirect influence on economic yield related to biological yield in cotton. In the present study, we carried out dynamic analysis for plant height and its heterosis by quantitative trait loci (QTL mapping at multiple developmental stages using two recombinant inbred lines (RILs and their backcross progeny. At the single-locus level, 47 QTL were identified at five developmental stages in two hybrids. In backcross populations, QTL identified at an early stage mainly showed partial effects and QTL detected at a later stage mostly displayed overdominance effects. At the two-locus level, we found that main effect QTL played a more important role than epistatic QTL in the expression of heterosis in backcross populations. Therefore, this study implies that the genetic basis of plant height heterosis shows dynamic character and main effect QTL with dominance determines heterosis for plant height in Upland cotton.

  12. Integration of developmental and environmental signals via a polyadenylation factor in Arabidopsis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Man Liu

    Full Text Available The ability to integrate environmental and developmental signals with physiological responses is critical for plant survival. How this integration is done, particularly through posttranscriptional control of gene expression, is poorly understood. Previously, it was found that the 30 kD subunit of Arabidopsis cleavage and polyadenylation specificity factor (AtCPSF30 is a calmodulin-regulated RNA-binding protein. Here we demonstrated that mutant plants (oxt6 deficient in AtCPSF30 possess a novel range of phenotypes--reduced fertility, reduced lateral root formation, and altered sensitivities to oxidative stress and a number of plant hormones (auxin, cytokinin, gibberellic acid, and ACC. While the wild-type AtCPSF30 (C30G was able to restore normal growth and responses, a mutant AtCPSF30 protein incapable of interacting with calmodulin (C30GM could only restore wild-type fertility and responses to oxidative stress and ACC. Thus, the interaction with calmodulin is important for part of AtCPSF30 functions in the plant. Global poly(A site analysis showed that the C30G and C30GM proteins can restore wild-type poly(A site choice to the oxt6 mutant. Genes associated with hormone metabolism and auxin responses are also affected by the oxt6 mutation. Moreover, 19 genes that are linked with calmodulin-dependent CPSF30 functions, were identified through genome-wide expression analysis. These data, in conjunction with previous results from the analysis of the oxt6 mutant, indicate that the polyadenylation factor AtCPSF30 is a regulatory hub where different signaling cues are transduced, presumably via differential mRNA 3' end formation or alternative polyadenylation, into specified phenotypic outcomes. Our results suggest a novel function of a polyadenylation factor in environmental and developmental signal integration.

  13. Recruitment strategies should not be randomly selected: empirically improving recruitment success and diversity in developmental psychology research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sugden, Nicole A.; Moulson, Margaret C.

    2015-01-01

    Psychological and developmental research have been critiqued for the lack of diversity of research samples. Because differences in culture, race, and ethnicity can influence participant behavior, limited diversity limits the generalizability of the findings. These differences may also impact how participants behave in response to recruitment attempts, which suggests that recruitment itself may be leveraged to increase sample diversity. The goal of the current study was to determine what factors, within a recruitment interaction, could be leveraged to increase success and diversity when recruiting families with children for developmental research. Study 1 found three factors influenced success: (1) recruitment was more successful when other potential participants were also interested (i.e., recruiters were busy), (2) recruiters of particular races were more successful than recruiters of other races, and (3) differences in success were related to what the recruiter said to engage the potential participant (i.e., the script). The latter two factors interacted, suggesting some recruiters were using less optimal scripts. To improve success rates, study 2 randomly assigned scripts to recruiters and encouraged them to recruit more vigorously during busy periods. Study 2 found that two factors influenced success: (1) some scripts were more successful than others and (2) we were more successful at recruiting non-White potential participants than White participants. These two interacted, with some scripts being more successful with White and other scripts being more successful with non-White families. This intervention significantly increased recruitment success rate by 8.1% and the overall number of families recruited by 15.3%. These findings reveal that empirically evaluating and tailoring recruitment efforts based on the most successful strategies is effective in boosting diversity through increased participation of children from non-White families. PMID:25972829

  14. Role of proline in cell wall synthesis and plant development and its implications in plant ontogeny

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    POLAVARAPU BILHAN KAVI KISHOR

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Proline is a proteogenic amino acid and accumulates both under stress and non-stress conditions as a beneficial solute in plants. Recent discoveries point out that proline plays an important role in plant growth and differentiation across life cycle. It is a key determinant of many cell wall proteins that plays important roles in plant development. The role of extensins (EXTs, arabinogalactan proteins (AGPs and hydroxyproline- and proline-rich proteins (H/PRPs as important components of cell wall proteins that play pivotal roles in cell wall signal transduction cascades, plant development and stress tolerance is discussed in this review. Molecular insights are also provided here into the plausible roles of proline transporters modulating key events in plant development. In addition, the roles of proline during seed developmental transitions including storage protein synthesis are discussed.

  15. Studies on improvements in the control methods of boiling water reactor plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mankin, Shuichi

    1982-08-01

    In order to improve the performance of regulation and load following control of boiling water reactor plant, optimal control theory is applied and new types of control method are developed. Case-α controller is first formulated on the basis of the optimal linear regulator theory applied to the linealized model of the system; it is then modified by adding a integration-type action in a feed back loop and by the use of variable gain and reference for adapting to the power level requested. Case-#betta# controller consists of a hierarchical control scheme which has classical P.I. type sub-loop controllers at the first level and a linear optimal regulator at the second level. The controller is designed on the basis of the optimal regulator theory applied to the multivariate autoregressive system model which is obtained from the identification experiments, where the system model is determined with the conventional sub-loop controllers included. The results of the simulation experiments show these control methods proposed have performed fairly well and will be useful for the improvement of the performance of nuclear power plant control. In addition, it is suggested that these control methods will be also attractive for the control of other production plants because these were developed in the attempt to solve the problems deviated from so called 'The gap between the optimal contro theory and actual systems.' (author)

  16. Recent achivements of the introduction and improvment of native medicinal plants in Iran

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hadian, Javad

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Iran is the country of different climates and rich genepool of different medicinal herbs. Both climate variation and available genetic resources, make possible the introduction and improvement of new plant varieties into agriculture. Artemisia dracunculus has been cultivated in different parts of Iran since unknown time. Satureja rechingeri is a wild endemic species growing in desert area of south west of Iran with annual rainfall of less than 250mm while, Solidago virgaurea and Equisetum arvence are native to north and northwest of Iran with more than 700 mm annual rainfall. Several experimets were conducted to introduce new varieties of these plants for economic and high quality plant material production in agricultural systems. Here some of the results are presented.

  17. Auxin-BR Interaction Regulates Plant Growth and Development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tian, Huiyu; Lv, Bingsheng; Ding, Tingting; Bai, Mingyi; Ding, Zhaojun

    2018-01-01

    Plants develop a high flexibility to alter growth, development, and metabolism to adapt to the ever-changing environments. Multiple signaling pathways are involved in these processes and the molecular pathways to transduce various developmental signals are not linear but are interconnected by a complex network and even feedback mutually to achieve the final outcome. This review will focus on two important plant hormones, auxin and brassinosteroid (BR), based on the most recent progresses about these two hormone regulated plant growth and development in Arabidopsis, and highlight the cross-talks between these two phytohormones. PMID:29403511

  18. Risk management: A tool for improving nuclear power plant performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2001-04-01

    This technical document on risk management as a tool for improving nuclear power plant (NPP) operations is part of an ongoing project on management of NPP operations in a competitive environment. The overall objective of this project is to assist the management of operating organizations and NPPs in identifying and implementing appropriate measures to remain competitive in a rapidly changing business environment. Other reports developed through this project have identified overall strategies and techniques that NPP operating organization managers can use to succeed in more competitive energy markets. For example, in IAEA-TECDOC-1123, Strategies for Competitive Nuclear Power Plants, one of the most important strategies identified was integrated risk management. This publication provides a recommended structure for risk management along with examples of how NPP operating organizations are using this tool to help them integrate safety, operational and economic related risks in a changing business environment

  19. Co-overexpressing a Plasma Membrane and a Vacuolar Membrane Sodium/Proton Antiporter Significantly Improves Salt Tolerance in Transgenic Arabidopsis Plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pehlivan, Necla; Sun, Li; Jarrett, Philip; Yang, Xiaojie; Mishra, Neelam; Chen, Lin; Kadioglu, Asim; Shen, Guoxin; Zhang, Hong

    2016-01-01

    The Arabidopsis gene AtNHX1 encodes a vacuolar membrane-bound sodium/proton (Na+/H+) antiporter that transports Na+ into the vacuole and exports H+ into the cytoplasm. The Arabidopsis gene SOS1 encodes a plasma membrane-bound Na+/H+ antiporter that exports Na+ to the extracellular space and imports H+ into the plant cell. Plants rely on these enzymes either to keep Na+ out of the cell or to sequester Na+ into vacuoles to avoid the toxic level of Na+ in the cytoplasm. Overexpression of AtNHX1 or SOS1 could improve salt tolerance in transgenic plants, but the improved salt tolerance is limited. NaCl at concentration >200 mM would kill AtNHX1-overexpressing or SOS1-overexpressing plants. Here it is shown that co-overexpressing AtNHX1 and SOS1 could further improve salt tolerance in transgenic Arabidopsis plants, making transgenic Arabidopsis able to tolerate up to 250 mM NaCl treatment. Furthermore, co-overexpression of AtNHX1 and SOS1 could significantly reduce yield loss caused by the combined stresses of heat and salt, confirming the hypothesis that stacked overexpression of two genes could substantially improve tolerance against multiple stresses. This research serves as a proof of concept for improving salt tolerance in other plants including crops. PMID:26985021

  20. Communication-Based Assessment of Developmental Age for Young Children with Developmental Disabilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeVeney, Shari L.; Hoffman, Lesa; Cress, Cynthia J.

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: In this study, the authors compared a multiple-domain strategy for assessing developmental age of young children with developmental disabilities who were at risk for long-term reliance on augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) with a communication-based strategy composed of receptive language and communication indices that may…

  1. Early developmental responses to seedling environment modulate later plasticity to light spectral quality.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eric J B von Wettberg

    Full Text Available Correlations between developmentally plastic traits may constrain the joint evolution of traits. In plants, both seedling de-etiolation and shade avoidance elongation responses to crowding and foliage shade are mediated by partially overlapping developmental pathways, suggesting the possibility of pleiotropic constraints. To test for such constraints, we exposed inbred lines of Impatiens capensis to factorial combinations of leaf litter (which affects de-etiolation and simulated foliage shade (which affects phytochrome-mediated shade avoidance. Increased elongation of hypocotyls caused by leaf litter phenotypically enhanced subsequent elongation of the first internode in response to low red:far red (R:FR. Trait expression was correlated across litter and shade conditions, suggesting that phenotypic effects of early plasticity on later plasticity may affect variation in elongation traits available to selection in different light environments.

  2. Developmental perspectives on personality: implications for ecological and evolutionary studies of individual differences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stamps, Judy A; Groothuis, Ton G G

    2010-12-27

    Developmental processes can have major impacts on the correlations in behaviour across contexts (contextual generality) and across time (temporal consistency) that are the hallmarks of animal personality. Personality can and does change: at any given age or life stage it is contingent upon a wide range of experiential factors that occurred earlier in life, from prior to conception through adulthood. We show how developmental reaction norms that describe the effects of prior experience on a given behaviour can be used to determine whether the effects of a given experience at a given age will affect contextual generality at a later age, and to illustrate how variation within individuals in developmental plasticity leads to variation in contextual generality across individuals as a function of experience. We also show why niche-picking and niche-construction, behavioural processes which allow individuals to affect their own developmental environment, can affect the contextual generality and the temporal consistency of personality. We conclude by discussing how an appreciation of developmental processes can alert behavioural ecologists studying animal personality to critical, untested assumptions that underlie their own research programmes, and outline situations in which a developmental perspective can improve studies of the functional significance and evolution of animal personality.

  3. Improvement of the nuclear plant analyzer for Korean Standard Nuclear Power Plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Choi, Sung Soo; Han, Byoung Sub; Suh, Jae Seung; Son, Dae Seong

    2005-04-01

    Accurate analysis of the operating characteristics of Nuclear Power Plants provides valuable information for both norman and abnormal operation. The information can be used for the enhancement of plant performance and safety. Usually, such analysis is performed using computer codes used for plant design or simulators. However, their usages are limited because special expertise is required to use the computer codes and simulators are not portable. Therefore, it deemed necessary to develop an NPA which minimizes those limitations and can be used for the analysis and simulation of Nuclear Power Plants. The purpose of this study is to develop a real-time best-estimate NPA for the Korean Nuclear Power Plants(KSNP). The NPA is an interactive, high fidelity engineering simulator. NPA combines the process model simulating the plant behavior with the latest computer technology such as Graphical User Interface(GUI) and simulation executive for enhanced user interface. The process model includes models for a three-dimensional reactor core, the NSSS, secondary system including turbine and feedtrain, safety auxiliary systems, and various control systems. Through the verification and validation of the NPA, it was demonstrated that the NPA can realistically simulate the plant behaviors during transient and accident conditions

  4. Improvement of availability of PWR nuclear plants through the reduction of the time required for refueling/maintenance outages

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mayers, J.B.; Soth, L.G.

    1978-04-01

    The objective of the project, conducted by Commonwealth Research Corporation and Westinghouse Electric Corporation, is to identify improvements in procedures and equipment which will reduce the time required for refueling/maintenance outages at PWR nuclear power plants. The outage of Commonwealth Edison Zion Station Unit 1 in March through May of 1976 was evaluated to identify those items which caused delays and those work activities that offer the potential for significant improvements that could reduce the overall duration of the outage and achieve an improvement in the plant's availability for power production. Modifications in procedures have been developed and were evaluated during one or more outages in 1977. Conceptual designs have been developed for equipment modifications to the refueling system that could reduce the time required for the refueling portion of the outage. The purpose of the interim report is to describe those conceptual designs and to assess their impact upon future outages. Recommendations are included for the implementation of these equipment improvements in a continuation of this program as a demonstration of plant availability benefits that can be realized in PWR nuclear plants already in operation or under construction

  5. Reducing the occurrence of plant events through improved human performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ross, T.; Burkhart, A.D.

    1993-01-01

    During a routine control room surveillance, the reactor operator is distracted by an alarming secondary annunciator and a telephone call. When the reactor operator resumes the surveillance, he inadvertently performs the procedural steps out of order. This causes a reportable nuclear event. How can procedure-related human performance problems such as this be prevented? The question is vitally important for the nuclear industry. The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission's Office for Analysis and Evaluation of Operational Data observed, open-quotes With the perceived reduction in the number of events caused by equipment failures, INPO and other industry groups and human performance experts agree that a key to continued improvement in plant performance and safety is improved human performance.close quotes In fact, open-quotes more than 50% of the reportable events occurring at nuclear power plants involve human error.close quotes Prevention (or correction) of a human performance problem is normally based on properly balancing the following three factors: (1) supervisory involvement; (2) personnel training; and (3) procedures. The nuclear industry is implementing a formula known as ACME, which better balances supervisory involvement, personnel training, and procedures. Webster's New World Dictionary defines acme as the highest point, the peak. ACME human performance is the goal: ACME Adherence to and use of procedures; Self-Checking; Management Involvement; and Event Investigations

  6. Advancements in valve technology and industry lessons lead to improved plant reliability and cost savings

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sharma, V.; Kalsi, M.S.

    2005-01-01

    Plant reliability and safety hinges on the proper functioning of several valves. Recent advancements in valve technology have resulted in new analytical and test methods for evaluating and improving valve and actuator reliability. This is especially significant in critical service applications in which the economic impact of a valve failure on production, outage schedules and consequential damages far surpasses the initial equipment purchase price. This paper presents an overview of recent advances in valve technology driven by reliability concerns and cost savings objectives without comprising safety in the Nuclear Power Industry. This overview is based on over 27 years of experience in supporting US and International nuclear power utilities, and contributing to EPRI, and NSSS Owners' Groups in developing generic models/methodologies to address industry wide issues; performing design basis reviews; and implementing plant-wide valve reliability improvement programs. Various analytical prediction software and hardware solutions and training seminars are now available to implement valve programs covering power plants' lifecycle from the construction phase through life extension and power up rate. These tools and methodologies can enhance valve-engineering activities including the selection, sizing, proper application, condition monitoring, failure analysis, and condition based maintenance optimization with a focus on potential bad actors. This paper offers two such examples, the Kalsi Valve and Actuator Program (KVAP) and Check Valve Analysis and Prioritization (CVAP) [1-3, 8, 9, 11-13]. The advanced, validated torque prediction models incorporated into KVAP software for AOVs and MOVs have improved reliability of margin predictions and enabled cost savings through elimination of unwarranted equipment modifications. CVAP models provides a basis to prioritize the population of valves recommended for preventive maintenance, inspection and/or modification, allowing

  7. Optimization of Nitrogen Rate and Planting Density for Improving Yield, Nitrogen Use Efficiency, and Lodging Resistance in Oilseed Rape

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shahbaz Khan

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Yield and lodging related traits are essential for improving rapeseed production. The objective of the present study was to investigate the influence of plant density (D and nitrogen (N rates on morphological and physiological traits related to yield and lodging in rapeseed. We evaluated Huayouza 9 for two consecutive growing seasons (2014–2016 under three plant densities (LD, 10 plants m−2; MD, 30 plants m−2; HD, 60 plants m−2 and four N rates (0, 60, 120, and 180 kg ha−1. Experiment was laid out in split plot design using density as a main factor and N as sub-plot factor with three replications each. Seed yield was increased by increasing density and N rate, reaching a peak at HD with 180 kg N ha−1. The effect of N rate was consistently positive in increasing the plant height, pod area index, 1,000 seed weight, shoot and root dry weights, and root neck diameter, reaching a peak at 180 kg N ha−1. Plant height was decreased by increasing D, whereas the maximum radiation interception (~80% and net photosynthetic rate were recorded at MD at highest N. Lodging resistance and nitrogen use efficiency significantly increased with increasing D from 10 to 30 plants m−2, and N rate up to 120 kg ha−1, further increase of D and N decreased lodging resistance and NUE. Hence, our study implies that planting density 30 plants m−2 can improve yield, nitrogen use efficiency, and enhance lodging resistance by improving crop canopy.

  8. Developmental plasticity: Friend or foe?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michels, Karin B

    2017-01-01

    Developmental plasticity - the concept that adaptation to changing and unfavorable environmental conditions are possible but may come at the price of compromised health potentials - has evolutionary grounding as it facilitates survival but dissents with fundamental evolutionary principles in that it may advance the lesser fit. It is an important cornerstone of the Developmental Origins of Health and Disease (DOHaD). Unlike evolutionary adaptation developmental plasticity may be short-lived and restricted to one or few generations and inheritance is uncertain. Potential mechanisms include epigenetic modifications adopted in utero which may not transmit to the next generation; future insights may allow adjustments of the outcomes of developmental plasticity.

  9. A longitudinal study of maternal attachment and infant developmental outcomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alhusen, Jeanne L; Hayat, Matthew J; Gross, Deborah

    2013-12-01

    Extant research has demonstrated that compared to adults with insecure attachment styles, more securely attached parents tend to be more responsive, sensitive, and involved parents, resulting in improved outcomes for their children. Less studied is the influence of a mother's attachment style on her attachment to her unborn child during pregnancy and the consequent developmental outcomes of the child during early childhood. Thus, the aim of this prospective longitudinal study was to examine the relationship between maternal-fetal attachment (MFA) during pregnancy and infant and toddler outcomes and the role of mothers' attachment style on early childhood developmental outcomes in an economically disadvantaged sample of women and their children. Gamma regression modeling demonstrated that an avoidant maternal attachment style (b = .98, 95 % CI [.97, .98], p attachment styles and greater depressive symptomatology were more likely to have children demonstrating early childhood developmental delays than those women with less avoidant attachment styles and less depressive symptomatology. Furthermore, women reporting higher MFA during pregnancy had more secure attachment styles, and their children had more optimal early childhood development than those women reporting lower MFA and less secure attachment styles. Findings have implications for enhancing early intervention programs aimed at improving maternal and childhood outcomes. An earlier identification of disruptions in attachment may be beneficial in tailoring interventions focused on the mother-child dyad.

  10. Improved plant nitrogen nutrition contributes to higher water use efficiency in tomatoes under alternate partial root-zone irrigation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wang, Yaosheng; Liu, Fulai; Andersen, Mathias Neumann

    2010-01-01

    stomatal conductance during the treatment. At the end of the experiment, N accumulation and 15N recovery was highest in FI, intermediate in PRI and lowest in DI. In addition, PRI plants consistently allocated more N into the upper and middle leaf layers than in the FI and DI treatments. The improved N...... nutrition and distribution in the canopy may indicate that PRI plants have a greater photosynthetic capacity than DI plants; this is confirmed by the observed positive linear relationship between specific leaf N content and δ13C. It is concluded that PRI improves N nutrition and optimises N distribution...

  11. Proceedings of the workshop on better nuclear plant maintenance: improving human and organisational performance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2007-04-05

    A significant proportion of nuclear plant events is attributable to failures that take place during maintenance and periodic testing. Human and organisational factors are frequently identified as making a major contribution to these events. Despite this recognition, licensee and regulatory oversight in the human and organisational area has tended to focus more on operational matters than maintenance. Owing to the importance of human and organisational performance on nuclear plant maintenance, the CSNI Special Experts' Group on Human and Organisational Factors (SEGHOF) hosted a workshop entitled 'Better nuclear plant maintenance: improving human and organisational performance'. The workshop provided an international forum for staff from nuclear plants, research bodies, and regulators to discuss human and organisational challenges to maintenance, and initiatives to support effective performance. Over 60 participants from about 20 countries participated. The workshop was divided into five sessions: 1) International guidance to improve maintenance performance; 2) Lessons learned through maintenance operating experience; 3) Licensee initiatives to support reliable maintenance; 4) Regulatory approaches to assuring effective licensee maintenance; and 5) Recent trends and their impact on maintenance. Sessions commenced with oral presentations of papers followed by break-out and plenary discussions. Session 4 on regulatory approaches included short presentations from ten regulatory bodies and was followed by discussion comparing these approaches. The main findings of the workshop concern: the retirements of experienced staff; the increasing use of contractors to perform maintenance activities; the use of skill-broadening in maintenance; the role of supervisors at the plant level; the organisational changes that are used to optimise the use of plant staff resources; the effective planning of maintenance tasks; the time allowed to complete maintenance tasks; the development

  12. A new paradigma on the plant evolution: from a natural evolution to an artificial evolution?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bennici, Andrea

    2005-01-01

    After evidencing the great importance of plants for animals and humans in consequence of the photosynthesis, several considerations on plant evolution are made. One of the peculiar characteristics of the plant is the sessile property, due especially to the cell wall. This factor, principally, strengthened by the photosynthetic process, determined the particular developmental pattern of the plant, which is characterized by the continuous formation of new organs. The plant immobility, although negative for its survival, has been, in great part, overcome by the acquisition of the capacity of adaptation (plasticity) to the environmental stresses and changes, and the establishment of more adapted genotypes. This capacity to react to the external signals induced Trewavas to speak of "plant intelligence". The plant movement incapacity and the evolution of the sexual reproduction system were strongly correlated. In this context, the evolution of the flower in the Angiosperms has been particularly important to allow the male gamete to fertilize the immobile female gamete. Moreover, the formation of fruit and seed greatly improved the dispersal and conservation of the progeny in the environment. With the flower, mechanisms to favour the outcrossing among different individuals appeared, which are essential to increase the genetic variability and, then, the plant evolution itself. Although the Angiosperms seem highly evolved, the plant evolution is not surely finished, because many reported morpho-physiological processes may be still considered susceptible of further improvement. In the last years the relationships among humans, plants and environment are becoming closer and closer. This is due to the use of the DNA recombinant techniques with the aim to modify artificially plant characters. Therefore, the risk of a plant evolution strongly directed towards practical or commercial objectives, or "an artificial evolution", may be hypothesized.

  13. Improvements done at Heavy Water Plant (Manuguru) to increase the standards of environmental protection

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rama Rao, V.V.S.; Gupta, R.V.; Pandey, B.L.

    1997-01-01

    The Heavy Water Plant at Manuguru is designed to produce 185 MTY of nuclear grade heavy water based on bithermal H 2 S-H 2 O exchange process and handles large inventory of H 2 S gas (about 400 MT). As H 2 S gas is very toxic, corrosive and hazardous in nature, extreme care has been taken in the design of plant, selection of equipment and materials adhering to stringent fabrication procedures and codes to ensure the production of heavy water in a safe manner. This paper highlights the improvements done at Heavy Water Plant (Manuguru) to increase the standards of environmental protection. The safety assessment of a hazardous plant is a continuous process. Apart from the extreme care taken in the design, construction, commissioning and operation of the plant, review of each and every safety related unusual occurrence by various levels of review committees as stipulated and speedy implementation of the recommendations goes in a long way in increasing the standards of environmental protection

  14. Developmental delay in the Amazon: The social determinants and prevalence among rural communities in Peru.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Westgard, Christopher; Alnasser, Yossef

    2017-01-01

    The consequences of poor child development are becoming increasingly recognized. Programs are being put in place around the world to improve child development by providing healthy and stimulating environments for children. However, these programs often have limited reach and little is known about the prevalence of developmental delay in under-developed communities. The current study set-out to better understand the prevalence of developmental delay in rural communities in the Amazon region of Peru. Also, it explores social determinants that are associated with any delay. Cross-sectional study by evaluating developmental delay in children under 4 years utilizing Ages and Stages Questionnaire (ASQ-3). Additionally, conducting a social determinants questionnaire answered by caretakers to identify social drivers for developmental delay. The data was analyzed with multi-variant analysis to measure association. The prevalence of developmental delay in the Amazonian communities was 26.7% (19.3% in communication, 11.4% in gross motor skills, 8% in both) (N = 596). The multivariate logistic regression analysis revealed significant associations between developmental delay and; level of education (OR 0.64, p = 0.009), age of mother during child's birth (OR 0.96, p = 0.002), visits by community health agents (OR 0.73, p = 0.013), and river as primary water source (OR 2.39, p = 0.001). The social determinants questionnaire revealed that 39% of the mothers had their first child before the age of 17, nearly half stopped going to school before the age of 12 (52%), 29% gave birth at home, 13% breast fed for less than 7 months, and 50% of the children had diarrhea in the last month. There is still a great need to improve the conditions for child development in the Amazon region of Peru. One-fourth of the children suffer from developmental delay, which will likely impede their potentials for life unless something is done. The impact of education, age of mother at birth of the child

  15. Developmental delay in the Amazon: The social determinants and prevalence among rural communities in Peru.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher Westgard

    Full Text Available The consequences of poor child development are becoming increasingly recognized. Programs are being put in place around the world to improve child development by providing healthy and stimulating environments for children. However, these programs often have limited reach and little is known about the prevalence of developmental delay in under-developed communities. The current study set-out to better understand the prevalence of developmental delay in rural communities in the Amazon region of Peru. Also, it explores social determinants that are associated with any delay. Cross-sectional study by evaluating developmental delay in children under 4 years utilizing Ages and Stages Questionnaire (ASQ-3. Additionally, conducting a social determinants questionnaire answered by caretakers to identify social drivers for developmental delay. The data was analyzed with multi-variant analysis to measure association. The prevalence of developmental delay in the Amazonian communities was 26.7% (19.3% in communication, 11.4% in gross motor skills, 8% in both (N = 596. The multivariate logistic regression analysis revealed significant associations between developmental delay and; level of education (OR 0.64, p = 0.009, age of mother during child's birth (OR 0.96, p = 0.002, visits by community health agents (OR 0.73, p = 0.013, and river as primary water source (OR 2.39, p = 0.001. The social determinants questionnaire revealed that 39% of the mothers had their first child before the age of 17, nearly half stopped going to school before the age of 12 (52%, 29% gave birth at home, 13% breast fed for less than 7 months, and 50% of the children had diarrhea in the last month. There is still a great need to improve the conditions for child development in the Amazon region of Peru. One-fourth of the children suffer from developmental delay, which will likely impede their potentials for life unless something is done. The impact of education, age of mother at birth of

  16. Studies of Physcomitrella patens reveal that ethylene-mediated submergence responses arose relatively early in land-plant evolution

    KAUST Repository

    Yasumura, Yuki

    2012-10-18

    Colonization of the land by multicellular green plants was a fundamental step in the evolution of life on earth. Land plants evolved from fresh-water aquatic algae, and the transition to a terrestrial environment required the acquisition of developmental plasticity appropriate to the conditions of water availability, ranging from drought to flood. Here we show that extant bryophytes exhibit submergence-induced developmental plasticity, suggesting that submergence responses evolved relatively early in the evolution of land plants. We also show that a major component of the bryophyte submergence response is controlled by the phytohormone ethylene, using a perception mechanism that has subsequently been conserved throughout the evolution of land plants. Thus a plant environmental response mechanism with major ecological and agricultural importance probably had its origins in the very earliest stages of the colonization of the land. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  17. Grain and straw for whole plant: implications for crop management and genetic improvement strategies

    OpenAIRE

    Schiere, J.B.; Joshi, A.L.; Seetharam, A.; Oosting, S.J.; Goodchild, A.V.; Deinum, B.; Keulen, van, H.

    2004-01-01

    Straws and stovers are often called `by-products` of grain production even though they are increasingly important, e.g. for animal feed, thatching, soil improvement, mushroom production and industrial use. As a result, plant breeders, agronomists, economists and animal nutritionists have to pay more attention than before to the total value of crops, i.e. whole plant value in which straws and grain both play a part. This paper reviews literature about the technical potential of breeding and/or...

  18. Differentiation of plant age in grasses using remote sensing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knox, Nichola M.; Skidmore, Andrew K.; van der Werff, Harald M. A.; Groen, Thomas A.; de Boer, Willem F.; Prins, Herbert H. T.; Kohi, Edward; Peel, Mike

    2013-10-01

    Phenological or plant age classification across a landscape allows for examination of micro-topographical effects on plant growth, improvement in the accuracy of species discrimination, and will improve our understanding of the spatial variation in plant growth. In this paper six vegetation indices used in phenological studies (including the newly proposed PhIX index) were analysed for their ability to statistically differentiate grasses of different ages in the sequence of their development. Spectra of grasses of different ages were collected from a greenhouse study. These were used to determine if NDVI, NDWI, CAI, EVI, EVI2 and the newly proposed PhIX index could sequentially discriminate grasses of different ages, and subsequently classify grasses into their respective age category. The PhIX index was defined as: (AVNIRn+log(ASWIR2n))/(AVNIRn-log(ASWIR2n)), where AVNIRn and ASWIR2n are the respective normalised areas under the continuum removed reflectance curve within the VNIR (500-800 nm) and SWIR2 (2000-2210 nm) regions. The PhIX index was found to produce the highest phenological classification accuracy (Overall Accuracy: 79%, and Kappa Accuracy: 75%) and similar to the NDVI, EVI and EVI2 indices it statistically sequentially separates out the developmental age classes. Discrimination between seedling and dormant age classes and the adult and flowering classes was problematic for most of the tested indices. Combining information from the visible near infrared (VNIR) and shortwave infrared region (SWIR) region into a single phenological index captures the phenological changes associated with plant pigments and the ligno-cellulose absorption feature, providing a robust method to discriminate the age classes of grasses. This work provides a valuable contribution into mapping spatial variation and monitoring plant growth across savanna and grassland ecosystems.

  19. Role of plant biotechnology and genetic engineering in crop-improvement, with special emphases on cotton: A review

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Akhtar, L.H.; Siddiq, S.Z.; Tariq, A.H.; Arshad, M.; Gorham, J.

    2003-01-01

    Plant biotechnology and genetic engineering offer novel approaches to plant-breeding, production, propagation and preservation of germplasm. In this manuscript, the population and food-requirements of Pakistan, role of biotechnology and genetic engineering in crop-improvement, along with potential uses in cotton, have been discussed. The latest position of plant biotechnology and genetic engineering in Pakistan and the advantages of biotechnology and genetic-engineering techniques over conventional plant-breeding techniques, along with critical views of various scientists have been reviewed. (author)

  20. Improved electrical efficiency and bottom ash quality on waste combustion plants. Final report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jensen, Peter A.; Nesterov, I.; Boejer, M.; Hyks, J.; Astrup, T.; Kloeft, H.; Dam-Johansen, K.; Lundtorp, K.; Hedegaard Madsen, O.; Frandsen, F. (Technical Univ. of Denmark, Kgs. Lyngby (Denmark)); Mogensen, Erhardt (Babcock and Wilcox Voelund A/S, Glostrup (Denmark))

    2010-07-01

    Investigations making it possible to evaluate and further develop concepts to improve electrical efficiency in a waste combustion plant were performed. Furthermore, one objective of the study was to investigate the possibilities of improving waste bottom ash leaching properties by use of a rotary kiln treatment. The project work included construction of a bench-scale rotary kiln, performing ash rotary kiln treatment experiments, conducting gas suction probe measurements on a waste incineration plant and making some concept evaluations. The influence of the rotary kiln thermal treatment on the leaching of Ca, Al, Si, Mg, Ba, Sr, Cl, Cu, Pb, Zn, Cr, Mo, sulfate, DOC and carbonate was determined. As a result of these tests, the rotary kiln thermal treatment of bottom ashes can be recommended for reducing the leaching of Cu, Pb, Cl, Zn and DOC; however, an increased leaching of Cr and Mo should be expected. The combustion conditions above the grate of a waste incineration plant were investigated and the release and concentration of volatile ash species in the flue gas such as Cl, Na, K, Ca, Pb, Zn and S were measured. The conducted measurements show that flue gas from grate sections 3 and 4 can produce a sufficiently hot flue gas that contains only low concentrations of corrosive species, and therefore can be used to increase superheater temperatures. Implementation of the so-called flue gas split concept together with other steam circle modifications on a waste combustion plant, and using a reasonable increase in final steam temperature from 400 to 500 deg. C, have the potential to increase electrical efficiency from 24 to 30% (with respect to lower fuel heating value) in a waste combustion plant. (Author)

  1. Nutraceuticals, nutritional therapy, phytonutrients, and phytotherapy for improvement of human health: a perspective on plant biotechnology application.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Jian

    2007-01-01

    Plants are one of the most important resources of human foods and medicines. Rapidly increasing knowledge on nutrition, medicine, and plant biotechnology has dramatically changed the concepts about food, health and agriculture, and brought in a revolution on them. Nutritional therapy and phytotherapy have emerged as new concepts and healing systems have quickly and widely spread in recent years. Strong recommendations for consumption of nutraceuticals, natural plant foods, and the use of nutritional therapy and phytotherapy have become progressively popular to improve health, and to prevent and treat diseases. With these trends, improving the dietary nutritional values of fruits, vegetables and other crops or even bioactive components in folk herbals has become targets of the blooming plant biotechnology industry. This review attempts to display and remark on these aspects. It summarizes the progress made on nutraceuticals, nutritional therapy, phytonutrients, phytotherapy, and their related epidemiological investigations and clinical studies. It also covers markets of these health-promoting products and disease-preventing or healing systems, as well as regulations behind them that direct the development of biotechnology study and application. Finally, related patents are listed and briefly analyzed, regarding of plant biotechnological research and progress on transgenic crops to improve nutritional value, phytotherapy efficiency, or to produce pharmaceutically important secondary metabolites or high-valued protein medicines such as vaccines and antibodies.

  2. Leveraging Neuroscience to Inform Adolescent Health: The Need for an Innovative Transdisciplinary Developmental Science of Adolescence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suleiman, Ahna Ballonoff; Dahl, Ronald E

    2017-03-01

    In this article, we consider how to leverage some of the rapid advances in developmental neuroscience in ways that can improve adolescent health. We provide a brief overview of several key areas of scientific progress relevant to these issues. We then focus on two examples of important health problems that increase sharply during adolescence: sleep problems and affective disorders. These examples illustrate how an integrative, developmental science approach provides new insights into treatment and intervention. They also highlight a cornerstone principle: how a deeper understanding of potentially modifiable factors-at key developmental inflection points along the trajectory toward clinical disorders-is beginning to inform, and may eventually transform, a broad range of innovative early intervention strategies to improve adolescent health. Copyright © 2016 Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Model predictive control as a tool for improving the process operation of MSW combustion plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Leskens, M.; Kessel, L.B.M. van; Bosgra, O.H.

    2005-01-01

    In this paper a feasibility study is presented on the application of the advanced control strategy called model predictive control (MPC) as a tool for obtaining improved process operation performance for municipal solid waste (MSW) combustion plants. The paper starts with a discussion of the operational objectives and control of such plants, from which a motivation follows for applying MPC to them. This is followed by a discussion on the basic idea behind this advanced control strategy. After that, an MPC-based combustion control system is proposed aimed at tackling a typical MSW combustion control problem and, using this proposed control system, an assessment is made of the improvement in performance that an MPC-based MSW combustion control system can provide in comparison to conventional MSW combustion control systems. This assessment is based on simulations using an experimentally obtained process and disturbance model of a real-life large-scale MSW combustion plant

  4. The effect of plant reliability improvement in the cost of generating electricity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nejat, S.; Sanders, R.C.; Tsoulfanidis, N.

    1982-01-01

    The objective of this investigation is to study the economic benefits in operating a nuclear power plant, as a result of improving the availability of the secondary (steam) loop of the plant. A new method has been developed to obtain availability, frequency of failure, probability and frequency of operation, cycle time, and uptime for different capacity states of a parallel series system having components with failure and repair rates distributed exponentially in time. The method has been applied to different subsystems, systems, and the secondary loop of a plant as a whole. The effect of having spare parts for several components, as measured by savings in the generation of electricity, is also studied. The Kettelle algorithm was applied to determine optimal allocation of spare parts to achieve maximum availability or minimum cost of electricity, subject to a fixed spare parts budget. The savings per year for optimal spare parts allocation and different spare parts budgets were obtained. The results show that the utility will save its customers a large amount of money if spare parts are purchased, especially at the beginning of the plant operation, and are allocated judiciously

  5. Biofertilizers function as key player in sustainable agriculture by improving soil fertility, plant tolerance and crop productivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhardwaj, Deepak; Ansari, Mohammad Wahid; Sahoo, Ranjan Kumar; Tuteja, Narendra

    2014-05-08

    Current soil management strategies are mainly dependent on inorganic chemical-based fertilizers, which caused a serious threat to human health and environment. The exploitation of beneficial microbes as a biofertilizer has become paramount importance in agriculture sector for their potential role in food safety and sustainable crop production. The eco-friendly approaches inspire a wide range of application of plant growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPRs), endo- and ectomycorrhizal fungi, cyanobacteria and many other useful microscopic organisms led to improved nutrient uptake, plant growth and plant tolerance to abiotic and biotic stress. The present review highlighted biofertilizers mediated crops functional traits such as plant growth and productivity, nutrient profile, plant defense and protection with special emphasis to its function to trigger various growth- and defense-related genes in signaling network of cellular pathways to cause cellular response and thereby crop improvement. The knowledge gained from the literature appraised herein will help us to understand the physiological bases of biofertlizers towards sustainable agriculture in reducing problems associated with the use of chemicals fertilizers.

  6. Biofertilizers function as key player in sustainable agriculture by improving soil fertility, plant tolerance and crop productivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-01-01

    Current soil management strategies are mainly dependent on inorganic chemical-based fertilizers, which caused a serious threat to human health and environment. The exploitation of beneficial microbes as a biofertilizer has become paramount importance in agriculture sector for their potential role in food safety and sustainable crop production. The eco-friendly approaches inspire a wide range of application of plant growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPRs), endo- and ectomycorrhizal fungi, cyanobacteria and many other useful microscopic organisms led to improved nutrient uptake, plant growth and plant tolerance to abiotic and biotic stress. The present review highlighted biofertilizers mediated crops functional traits such as plant growth and productivity, nutrient profile, plant defense and protection with special emphasis to its function to trigger various growth- and defense-related genes in signaling network of cellular pathways to cause cellular response and thereby crop improvement. The knowledge gained from the literature appraised herein will help us to understand the physiological bases of biofertlizers towards sustainable agriculture in reducing problems associated with the use of chemicals fertilizers. PMID:24885352

  7. CEREBELLUM: LINKS BETWEEN DEVELOPMENT, DEVELOPMENTAL DISORDERS AND MOTOR LEARNING

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mario U Manto

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The study of the links and interactions between development and motor learning has noticeable implications for the understanding and management of neurodevelopmental disorders. This is particularly relevant for the cerebellum which is critical for sensorimotor learning. The olivocerebellar pathway is a key pathway contributing to learning of motor skills. Its developmental maturation and remodelling are being unravelled. Advances in genetics have led to major improvements in our appraisal of the genes involved in cerebellar development, especially studies in mutant mice. Cerebellar neurogenesis is compartmentalized in relationship with neurotransmitter fate. The Engrailed-2 gene is a major actor of the specification of cerebellar cell types and late embryogenic morphogenesis. Math1, expressed by the rhombic lip (RL, is required for the genesis of glutamatergic neurons. Mutants deficient for the transcription factor Ptf1a display a lack of Purkinje cells and gabaergic interneurons. Rora gene contributes to the developmental signalling between granule cells and Purkinje neurons. The expression profile of SHH (Sonic hedgehog in postnatal stages determines the final size/shape of the cerebellum. Genes affecting the development impact upon the physiological properties of the cerebellar circuits. For instance, receptors are developmentally regulated and their action interferes directly with developmental processes. Another field of research which is expanding relates to very preterm neonates. They are at risk for cerebellar lesions, which may themselves impair the developmental events. Very preterm neonates often show sensori-motor deficits, highlighting another major link between impaired development and learning deficiencies. Pathways playing a critical role in cerebellar development are likely to become therapeutical targets for several neurodevelopmental disorders.

  8. Green Algae and the Origins of Multicellularity in the Plant Kingdom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Umen, James G.

    2014-01-01

    The green lineage of chlorophyte algae and streptophytes form a large and diverse clade with multiple independent transitions to produce multicellular and/or macroscopically complex organization. In this review, I focus on two of the best-studied multicellular groups of green algae: charophytes and volvocines. Charophyte algae are the closest relatives of land plants and encompass the transition from unicellularity to simple multicellularity. Many of the innovations present in land plants have their roots in the cell and developmental biology of charophyte algae. Volvocine algae evolved an independent route to multicellularity that is captured by a graded series of increasing cell-type specialization and developmental complexity. The study of volvocine algae has provided unprecedented insights into the innovations required to achieve multicellularity. PMID:25324214

  9. Genetic engineering in the improvement of plants for phytoremediation of metal polluted soils.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Karenlampi, S.; Schat, H.; Vangronsveld, J.; Verkley, J.A.C.; van der Lelie, D.; Mergeay, M.; Tervahauta, A.I.

    2000-01-01

    Metal concentrations in soils are locally quite high, and are still increasing due to many human activities, leading to elevated risk for health and the environment. Phytoremediation may offer a viable solution to this problem, and the approach is gaining increasing interest. Improvement of plants

  10. Flavonoids: A Metabolic Network Mediating Plants Adaptation to Their Real Estate

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aidyn eMouradov

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available From an evolutionary perspective, the emergence of the sophisticated chemical scaffolds of flavonoid molecules represents a key step in the colonization of Earth’s terrestrial environment by vascular plants nearly 500 million years ago. The subsequent evolution of flavonoids through recruitment and modification of ancestors involved in primary metabolism has allowed vascular plants to cope with pathogen invasion and damaging UV light. The functional properties of flavonoids as a unique combination of different classes of compounds vary significantly depending on the demands of their local real estate. Apart from geographical location, the composition of flavonoids is largely dependent on the plant species, their developmental stage, tissue type, subcellular localization, and key ecological influences of both biotic and abiotic origin. Molecular and metabolic cross-talk between flavonoid and other pathways as a result of the re-direction of intermediate molecules have been well investigated. This metabolic plasticity is a key factor in plant adaptive strength and is of paramount importance for early land plants adaptation to their local ecosystems. In human and animal health the biological and pharmacological activities of flavonoids have been investigated in great depth and have shown a wide range of anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, anti-microbial and anti-cancer properties. In this paper we review the application of advanced gene technologies for targeted reprogramming of the flavonoid pathway in plants to understand its molecular functions and explore opportunities for major improvements in forage plants enhancing animal health and production.

  11. Flavonoids: a metabolic network mediating plants adaptation to their real estate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mouradov, Aidyn; Spangenberg, German

    2014-01-01

    From an evolutionary perspective, the emergence of the sophisticated chemical scaffolds of flavonoid molecules represents a key step in the colonization of Earth's terrestrial environment by vascular plants nearly 500 million years ago. The subsequent evolution of flavonoids through recruitment and modification of ancestors involved in primary metabolism has allowed vascular plants to cope with pathogen invasion and damaging UV light. The functional properties of flavonoids as a unique combination of different classes of compounds vary significantly depending on the demands of their local real estate. Apart from geographical location, the composition of flavonoids is largely dependent on the plant species, their developmental stage, tissue type, subcellular localization, and key ecological influences of both biotic and abiotic origin. Molecular and metabolic cross-talk between flavonoid and other pathways as a result of the re-direction of intermediate molecules have been well investigated. This metabolic plasticity is a key factor in plant adaptive strength and is of paramount importance for early land plants adaptation to their local ecosystems. In human and animal health the biological and pharmacological activities of flavonoids have been investigated in great depth and have shown a wide range of anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, anti-microbial, and anti-cancer properties. In this paper we review the application of advanced gene technologies for targeted reprogramming of the flavonoid pathway in plants to understand its molecular functions and explore opportunities for major improvements in forage plants enhancing animal health and production.

  12. Improved method for HPLC analysis of polyamines, agmatine and aromatic monoamines in plant tissue

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slocum, R. D.; Flores, H. E.; Galston, A. W.; Weinstein, L. H.

    1989-01-01

    The high performance liquid chromatographic (HPLC) method of Flores and Galston (1982 Plant Physiol 69: 701) for the separation and quantitation of benzoylated polyamines in plant tissues has been widely adopted by other workers. However, due to previously unrecognized problems associated with the derivatization of agmatine, this important intermediate in plant polyamine metabolism cannot be quantitated using this method. Also, two polyamines, putrescine and diaminopropane, also are not well resolved using this method. A simple modification of the original HPLC procedure greatly improves the separation and quantitation of these amines, and further allows the simulation analysis of phenethylamine and tyramine, which are major monoamine constituents of tobacco and other plant tissues. We have used this modified HPLC method to characterize amine titers in suspension cultured carrot (Daucas carota L.) cells and tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum L.) leaf tissues.

  13. Bio-Engineering Services to the Developmentally Disabled Adolescent. Final Report.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mallik, Kalisankar; Yuspeh, Sheldon

    A 1-year demonstration project involving 24 developmentally disabled students (9- to 20-years-old) with severe physical limitations was conducted to increase their educational and vocational possibilities by using cost-effective bio-engineering techniques to modify their physical environment and develop improved adaptive devices. Phase I of the…

  14. Optimization of Boiler Control for Improvement of Load Following Capabilities of Existing Power Plants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mortensen, J. H.; Mølbak, T.; Pedersen, Tom Søndergaard

    1997-01-01

    An An optimizing control system for improving the load following capabilities of power plant units has been developed. The system is implemented as a complement producing additive control signals to the existing boiler control system, a concept which has various practical advantages in terms...... of implementation and commissioning. The optimizing control system takes into account the multivariable and nonlinear characteristics of the boiler process as a gain-scheduled LQG-controller is utilized. Simulation results indicate that a reduction of steam temperature deviations of about 75% can be obtained.......optimizing control system for improving the load following capabilities of power plant units has been developed. The system is implemented as a complement producing additive control signals to the existing boiler control system, a concept which has various practical advantages in terms of implementation...

  15. TCP Transcription Factors at the Interface between Environmental Challenges and the Plant's Growth Responses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danisman, Selahattin

    2016-01-01

    Plants are sessile and as such their reactions to environmental challenges differ from those of mobile organisms. Many adaptions involve growth responses and hence, growth regulation is one of the most crucial biological processes for plant survival and fitness. The plant-specific TEOSINTE BRANCHED 1, CYCLOIDEA, PCF1 (TCP) transcription factor family is involved in plant development from cradle to grave, i.e., from seed germination throughout vegetative development until the formation of flowers and fruits. TCP transcription factors have an evolutionary conserved role as regulators in a variety of plant species, including orchids, tomatoes, peas, poplar, cotton, rice and the model plant Arabidopsis. Early TCP research focused on the regulatory functions of TCPs in the development of diverse organs via the cell cycle. Later research uncovered that TCP transcription factors are not static developmental regulators but crucial growth regulators that translate diverse endogenous and environmental signals into growth responses best fitted to ensure plant fitness and health. I will recapitulate the research on TCPs in this review focusing on two topics: the discovery of TCPs and the elucidation of their evolutionarily conserved roles across the plant kingdom, and the variety of signals, both endogenous (circadian clock, plant hormones) and environmental (pathogens, light, nutrients), TCPs respond to in the course of their developmental roles.

  16. The perception of strigolactones in vascular plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lumba, Shelley; Holbrook-Smith, Duncan; McCourt, Peter

    2017-05-17

    Small-molecule hormones play central roles in plant development, ranging from cellular differentiation and organ formation to developmental response instruction in changing environments. A recently discovered collection of related small molecules collectively called strigolactones are of particular interest, as these hormones also function as ecological communicators between plants and fungi and between parasitic plants and their hosts. Advances from model plant systems have begun to unravel how, as a hormone, strigolactone is perceived and transduced. In this Review, we summarize this information and examine how understanding strigolactone hormone signaling is leading to insights into parasitic plant infections. We specifically focus on how the development of chemical probes can be used in combination with model plant systems to dissect strigolactone's perception in the parasitic plant Striga hermonthica. This information is particularly relevant since Striga is considered one of the largest impediments to food security in sub-Saharan Africa.

  17. Developmental localization and the role of hydroxyproline rich glycoproteins during somatic embryogenesis of banana (Musa spp. AAA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Menzel Diedrik

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Hydroxyproline rich glycoproteins (HRGPs are implicated to have a role in many aspects of plant growth and development but there is limited knowledge about their localization and function during somatic embryogenesis of higher plants. In this study, the localization and function of hydroxyproline rich glycoproteins in embryogenic cells (ECs and somatic embryos of banana were investigated by using immunobloting and immunocytochemistry with monoclonal JIM11 and JIM20 antibodies as well as by treatment with 3,4-dehydro-L-proline (3,4-DHP, an inhibitor of extensin biosynthesis, and by immunomodulation with the JIM11 antibody. Results Immunofluorescence labelling of JIM11 and JIM20 hydroxyproline rich glycoprotein epitopes was relatively weak in non-embryogenic cells (NECs, mainly on the edge of small cell aggregates. On the other hand, hydroxyproline rich glycoprotein epitopes were found to be enriched in early embryogenic cells as well as in various developmental stages of somatic embryos. Embryogenic cells (ECs, proembryos and globular embryos showed strong labelling of hydroxyproline rich glycoprotein epitopes, especially in their cell walls and outer surface layer, so-called extracellular matrix (ECM. This hydroxyproline rich glycoprotein signal at embryo surfaces decreased and/or fully disappeared during later developmental stages (e.g. pear-shaped and cotyledonary stages of embryos. In these later developmental embryogenic stages, however, new prominent hydroxyproline rich glycoprotein labelling appeared in tri-cellular junctions among parenchymatic cells inside these embryos. Overall immunofluorescence labelling of late stage embryos with JIM20 antibody was weaker than that of JIM11. Western blot analysis supported the above immunolocalization data. The treatment with 3,4-DHP inhibited the development of embryogenic cells and decreased the rate of embryo germination. Embryo-like structures, which developed after 3,4-DHP

  18. Resilience improvements to UK nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pepper, Kevin

    2015-01-01

    Following the events at Fukushima, the Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR), the UK nuclear safety regulator, undertook a series of reviews into the resilience of UK nuclear power plants to severe events. These reviews highlighted a number of areas in relation to electrical infrastructure where it considered licensees should review their arrangements, considering both onsite and offsite infrastructure as well as the ability to recover following a complete loss of site infrastructure. In response, UK licensees have been exploring four parallel approaches to improving the resilience for each of their sites. Firstly, through modifications on-site such as enhancements to the installed diesel generators and related systems. Secondly through improvements to the resilience of essential instrumentation to Station Black Out events. Thirdly, through the provision of off-site backup equipment that can be deployed to any site following a severe event. Finally, the provision of event qualified connection points on site to enable timely restoration of long term essential electrical supplies and cooling to key systems. This last item gives a central focus to the issues of switchboard availability and the resilience of the whole network to large potentially common cause internal and external hazards. This paper will discuss the electrically related findings of the ONR reviews, explore the reasoning behind those decisions, and describe the approaches being taken by UK licensees. (authors)

  19. Extracellular peptidase hunting for improvement of protein production in plant cells and roots

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jérôme eLallemand

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Plant-based recombinant protein production systems have gained an extensive interest over the past few years, because of their reduced cost and relative safety. Although the first products are now reaching the market, progress are still needed to improve plant hosts and strategies for biopharming. Targeting recombinant proteins toward the extracellular space offers several advantages in terms of protein folding and purification, but degradation events are observed, due to endogenous peptidases. This paper focuses on the analysis of extracellular proteolytic activities in two production systems: cell cultures and root-secretion (rhizosecretion, in Arabidopsis thaliana and Nicotiana tabacum. Proteolytic activities of extracellular proteomes (secretomes were evaluated in vitro against two substrate proteins: bovine serum albumin (BSA and human serum immunoglobulins G (hIgGs. Both targets were found to be degraded by the secretomes, BSA being more prone to proteolysis than hIgGs. The analysis of the proteolysis pH-dependence showed that target degradation was mainly dependent upon the production system: rhizosecretomes contained more peptidase activity than extracellular medium of cell suspensions, whereas variations due to plant species were smaller. Using class-specific peptidase inhibitors, serine and metallopeptidases were found to be responsible for degradation of both substrates. An in-depth in silico analysis of genomic and transcriptomic data from Arabidopsis was then performed and led to the identification of a limited number of serine and metallo-peptidases that are consistently expressed in both production systems. These peptidases should be prime candidates for further improvement of plant hosts by targeted silencing.

  20. Computer aided piping layout design in radiochemical plants- an improved software package

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Raju, R.P.; Siddiqui, H.R.

    1995-01-01

    A software package was developed and it was successfully implemented for the piping layout design of the four process cells of the Kalpakkam Reprocessing Project. This paper discusses in detail all the improvements and modifications that are being carried out in the package so that it becomes more meaningful and useful for implementation for the forthcoming radiochemical plants

  1. DEVELOPMENTAL TAXONOMY OF CONDUCT DISORDER

    OpenAIRE

    Jelena Kostić; Milkica Nešić; Jasminka Marković; Miodrag Stanković

    2015-01-01

    Conduct disorder is a heterogeneous disorder in terms of etiology, course and prognosis, and currently, there is no singular model that would describe the development of the disorder. The results of empirical research on males confirm this heterogeneity, as they point out to two possible developmental pathways: childhood-onset and adolescentonset type. This paper presents the basic elements of developmental taxonomic theory which argues that there are two different developmental pathways to c...

  2. BreedVision — A Multi-Sensor Platform for Non-Destructive Field-Based Phenotyping in Plant Breeding

    Science.gov (United States)

    Busemeyer, Lucas; Mentrup, Daniel; Möller, Kim; Wunder, Erik; Alheit, Katharina; Hahn, Volker; Maurer, Hans Peter; Reif, Jochen C.; Würschum, Tobias; Müller, Joachim; Rahe, Florian; Ruckelshausen, Arno

    2013-01-01

    To achieve the food and energy security of an increasing World population likely to exceed nine billion by 2050 represents a major challenge for plant breeding. Our ability to measure traits under field conditions has improved little over the last decades and currently constitutes a major bottleneck in crop improvement. This work describes the development of a tractor-pulled multi-sensor phenotyping platform for small grain cereals with a focus on the technological development of the system. Various optical sensors like light curtain imaging, 3D Time-of-Flight cameras, laser distance sensors, hyperspectral imaging as well as color imaging are integrated into the system to collect spectral and morphological information of the plants. The study specifies: the mechanical design, the system architecture for data collection and data processing, the phenotyping procedure of the integrated system, results from field trials for data quality evaluation, as well as calibration results for plant height determination as a quantified example for a platform application. Repeated measurements were taken at three developmental stages of the plants in the years 2011 and 2012 employing triticale (×Triticosecale Wittmack L.) as a model species. The technical repeatability of measurement results was high for nearly all different types of sensors which confirmed the high suitability of the platform under field conditions. The developed platform constitutes a robust basis for the development and calibration of further sensor and multi-sensor fusion models to measure various agronomic traits like plant moisture content, lodging, tiller density or biomass yield, and thus, represents a major step towards widening the bottleneck of non-destructive phenotyping for crop improvement and plant genetic studies. PMID:23447014

  3. Predictive control strategy of a gas turbine for improvement of combined cycle power plant dynamic performance and efficiency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohamed, Omar; Wang, Jihong; Khalil, Ashraf; Limhabrash, Marwan

    2016-01-01

    This paper presents a novel strategy for implementing model predictive control (MPC) to a large gas turbine power plant as a part of our research progress in order to improve plant thermal efficiency and load-frequency control performance. A generalized state space model for a large gas turbine covering the whole steady operational range is designed according to subspace identification method with closed loop data as input to the identification algorithm. Then the model is used in developing a MPC and integrated into the plant existing control strategy. The strategy principle is based on feeding the reference signals of the pilot valve, natural gas valve, and the compressor pressure ratio controller with the optimized decisions given by the MPC instead of direct application of the control signals. If the set points for the compressor controller and turbine valves are sent in a timely manner, there will be more kinetic energy in the plant to release faster responses on the output and the overall system efficiency is improved. Simulation results have illustrated the feasibility of the proposed application that has achieved significant improvement in the frequency variations and load following capability which are also translated to be improvements in the overall combined cycle thermal efficiency of around 1.1 % compared to the existing one.

  4. Developmental dental defects in children exposed to PCBs

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jan, J. [Ljubljana Univ. (Slovenia). Fac. of Medicine; Sovcikova, E.; Kovrizhnykh, I.; Wimmerova, S.; Trnovec, T. [Slovak Medical Univ., Bratislava (Slovakia). Inst. of Preventive and Clinical Medicine; Kocan, A. [Institute of Preventive and Clinical Medicine, Bratislava (Slovakia). Dept. of Toxic Organic Pollutants

    2004-09-15

    Developing enamel is sensitive to a wide range of local and systemic disturbances. Because of the absolute metabolic stability of its structure, changes in enamel during its development are permanent in nature. Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB) have been shown to disturb tooth development in experimental animals, but only limited amounts of data exist on their adverse effects in humans. Dental changes such as mottled, chipped, carious, and neonatal teeth have been reported in accidentally exposed humans. Nevertheless, co-contamination with polychlorinated dibenzo-furans (PCDFs) was largely responsible for the overall toxicity4. Alaluusua et al. found that developmental dental defects were correlated with the total exposure to polychlorinated aromatic hydrocarbons via mother's milk. The correlation was strong with exposure to prevailing levels of polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins (PCDD) and furans (PCDF) but weak with exposure to PCBs alone. In our previous study we have shown developmental dental defects in children exposed to PCBs alone6, suggesting that the developing human teeth are vulnerable to PCBs. In the Michalovce region of eastern Slovakia, PCBs from a chemical plant manufacturing Delors contaminated the surrounding district7. The total serum PCB levels in samples from the general population there exceeded by several times the background levels in subjects living in a comparable unexposed Svidnik district. PCB levels in breast milk samples in the Michalovce region were the highest in Slovakia. Levels of toxic polychlorinated aromatics (PCDFs, PCNs, and planar PCBs) in technical Delors were high. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of long-term exposure to PCBs, measured at the individual level, on developmental dental defects in children in eastern Slovakia.

  5. Improvement of performance operation and cycle efficiency of Al Anbar combined power plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jabbar, Mohammed Q.

    2014-01-01

    The present work will be focusing on available solution which can serve to increase total efficiency of Al Anbar combined cycle power plant - CCPP, and thus to improve the operation performance as much as possible in order to decrease hydrocarbon, CO2, NOx emissions to environment.The simulation and calculations were performed by program software cycle-tempo software. The results were compared with basic design of Alanbar power plant after making modernization with solar tower receiver system-STRS, which represented a heat source in preheat process for a compressor air. Key Words: CCPP, STRS, Solar potential energy, fuel consumption, hydrocarbon emission

  6. Natural Ecosystem Surrounding a Conventional Banana Crop Improves Plant Health and Fruit Quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Florence P. Castelan

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Natural ecosystems near agricultural landscapes may provide rich environments for growing crops. However, the effect of a natural ecosystem on crop health and fruit quality is poorly understood. In the present study, it was investigated whether the presence of a natural ecosystem surrounding a crop area influences banana plant health and fruit postharvest behavior. Plants from two conventional banana crop areas with identical planting time and cultural practices were used; the only difference between banana crop areas is that one area was surrounded by a natural forest (Atlantic forest fragment (Near-NF, while the other area was inserted at the center of a conventional banana crop (Distant-NF. Results showed that bananas harvested from Near-NF showed higher greenlife and a more homogeneous profile during ripening compared to fruits harvested from Distant-NF. Differences in quality parameters including greenlife, carbohydrate profile, and pulp firmness between fruits harvested from Near-NF and Distant-NF are explained, at least partly, by differences in the balance of plant growth regulators (indole-3-acetic acid and abscisic acid in bananas during ripening. Furthermore, plants from Near-NF showed a lower severity index of black leaf streak disease (BLSD and higher levels of phenolic compounds in leaves compared to plants from Distant-NF. Together, the results provide additional evidence on how the maintenance of natural ecosystems near conventional crop areas could be a promising tool to improve plant health and fruit quality.

  7. Transcriptomics-based identification of developmental toxicants through their interference with cardiomyocyte differentiation of embryonic stem cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dartel, Dorien A.M. van; Pennings, Jeroen L.A.; Schooten, Frederik J. van; Piersma, Aldert H.

    2010-01-01

    The embryonic stem cell test (EST) predicts developmental toxicity based on the inhibition of cardiomyocyte differentiation of embryonic stem cells (ESC). The subjective endpoint, the long culture duration together with the undefined applicability domain and related predictivity need further improvement to facilitate implementation of the EST into regulatory strategies. These aspects may be improved by studying gene expression changes in the ESC differentiation cultures and their modulation by compound exposure using transcriptomics. Here, we tested the developmental toxicants monobutyl phthalate and 6-aminonicotinamide. ESC were allowed to differentiated, and cardiomyocyte differentiation was assessed after 10 days of culture. RNA of solvent controls was collected after 0, 24, 48, 72 and 96 h of exposure, and RNA of developmental-toxicant-exposed cultures was collected after 24 and 96 h. Samples were hybridized to DNA microarrays, and 1355 genes were found differentially expressed among the unexposed experimental groups. These regulated genes were involved in differentiation-related processes, and Principal Component Analysis (PCA) based on these genes showed that the unexposed experimental groups appeared in chronological order in the PCA, which can therefore be regarded as a continuous representation of the differentiation track. The developmental-toxicant-exposed cultures appeared to deviate significantly from this differentiation track, which confirms the compound-modulating effects on the differentiation process. The incorporation of transcriptomics in the EST is expected to provide a more informative and improved endpoint in the EST as compared with morphology, allowing early detection of differentiation modulation. Furthermore, this approach may improve the definition of the applicability domain and predictivity of the EST.

  8. Contextualizing Arithmetic into Developmental Elementary Algebra Using Guided Problem Solving

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guy, G. Michael; Cornick, Jonathan; Puri, Karan

    2016-01-01

    Many colleges are finding that the use of acceleration in developmental education is a promising direction for improved student progress toward a degree or certificate. Acceleration has been defined in the literature as the reorganization of curricula and instruction in ways that facilitate the completion of educational requirements in an…

  9. Topographic processing in developmental prosopagnosia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Klargaard, Solja K.; Starrfelt, Randi; Petersen, Anders

    2016-01-01

    deficit in visual processing or visual short-term memory. Interestingly, a classical dissociation could be demonstrated between impaired face memory and preserved topographic memory in two developmental prosopagnosics. We conclude that impairments in topographic memory tend to co-occur with developmental......Anecdotal evidence suggests a relation between impaired spatial (navigational) processing and developmental prosopagnosia. To address this formally, we tested two aspects of topographic processing – that is, perception and memory of mountain landscapes shown from different viewpoints. Participants...

  10. The Biggest Mover: Empowering Students with Intellectual and Developmental Delays and Physical Challenges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Michelle J.

    2018-01-01

    The Biggest Mover Program, an educational program to improve daily exercise and healthy eating was developed to address the learning needs of students with intellectual and developmental disabilities and physical challenges. The program was part of a three-part program to improve the knowledge of students, staff, and teachers through the use of…

  11. Lean Maintenance Applied to Improve Maintenance Efficiency in Thermoelectric Power Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Orlando Duran

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Thermoelectric power plants consist of a set of critical equipment that require high levels of availability and reliability. Due to this, maintenance of these physical assets is gaining momentum in industry. Maintenance is considered as an activity that contributes to improving the availability, efficiency and productivity of each piece of equipment. Several techniques have been used to achieve greater efficiencies in maintenance, among which we can find the lean maintenance philosophy. Despite the wide diffusion of lean maintenance, there is no structured method that supports the prescription of lean tools applied to the maintenance function. This paper presents the experience gathered in two lean maintenance projects in thermoelectric power plants. The application of lean techniques was based on using a previously developed multicriterial decision making process that uses the Fuzzy Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP methodology to carry out a diagnosis and prescription tasks. That methodology allowed the prescription of the appropriated lean techniques to resolve the main deficiencies in maintenance function. The results of applying such lean tools show that important results can be obtained, making the maintenance function in thermoelectric power plants more efficient and lean.

  12. Developmental stages of developmental screening: steps to implementation of a successful program.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinto-Martin, Jennifer A; Dunkle, Margaret; Earls, Marian; Fliedner, Dane; Landes, Cynthia

    2005-11-01

    Through the use of 2-stage screening strategies, research studies have shown that autism spectrum disorders and other developmental disabilities can now be detected reliably and with greater validity and in children as young as 18 months of age. Screening and diagnostic practices in the medical and educational arena lag far behind clinical research, however, with the average patient age at time of diagnosis being 3 to 6 years.We discuss the challenges of instituting universal developmental screening as part of pediatric care and present 2 models of existing or planned programs of early screening for autism spectrum disorder and developmental disability (1 in a community-based setting and 1 in a pediatric setting), and discuss the pros and cons of the different strategies.

  13. Rapid Identification of Asteraceae Plants with Improved RBF-ANN Classification Models Based on MOS Sensor E-Nose

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hui-Qin Zou

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Plants from Asteraceae family are widely used as herbal medicines and food ingredients, especially in Asian area. Therefore, authentication and quality control of these different Asteraceae plants are important for ensuring consumers’ safety and efficacy. In recent decades, electronic nose (E-nose has been studied as an alternative approach. In this paper, we aim to develop a novel discriminative model by improving radial basis function artificial neural network (RBF-ANN classification model. Feature selection algorithms, including principal component analysis (PCA and BestFirst + CfsSubsetEval (BC, were applied in the improvement of RBF-ANN models. Results illustrate that in the improved RBF-ANN models with lower dimension data classification accuracies (100% remained the same as in the original model with higher-dimension data. It is the first time to introduce feature selection methods to get valuable information on how to attribute more relevant MOS sensors; namely, in this case, S1, S3, S4, S6, and S7 show better capability to distinguish these Asteraceae plants. This paper also gives insights to further research in this area, for instance, sensor array optimization and performance improvement of classification model.

  14. Adapting plant measurement data to improve hardware fault detection performance in pressurised water reactors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cilliers, A.C.; Mulder, E.J.

    2012-01-01

    Highlights: ► Attempt was to use available resources at a nuclear plant in a value added fashion. ► Includes plant measurement data and plant training and engineering simulator capabilities. ► Solving the fault masking effect by the distributed control systems in the plant. ► Modelling the effect of inaccuracies in plant models used in the simulators. ► Combination of above resulted in the development of a deterministic fault identifications system. -- Abstract: With the fairly recent adoption of digital control and instrumentation systems in the nuclear industry a lot of research now focus on the development expert fault identification systems. The fault identification systems enable detecting early onset faults of fault causes which allows maintenance planning on the equipment showing signs of deterioration or failure. This includes valve and leaks and small cracks in steam generator tubes usually detected by means of ultrasonic inspection. Detecting faults early during transient operation in NPPs is problematic due to the absence of a reliable reference to compare plant measurements with during transients. The distributed application of control systems operating independently to keep the plant operating within the safe operating boundaries complicates the problem since the control systems would not only operate to reduce the effect of transient disturbances but fault disturbances as well. This paper provides a method to adapt the plant measurements that isolates the control actions on the fault and re-introduces it into the measurement data, thereby improving plant diagnostic performance.

  15. Lean Maintenance Applied to Improve Maintenance Efficiency in Thermoelectric Power Plants

    OpenAIRE

    Orlando Duran; Andrea Capaldo; Paulo Andrés Duran Acevedo

    2017-01-01

    Thermoelectric power plants consist of a set of critical equipment that require high levels of availability and reliability. Due to this, maintenance of these physical assets is gaining momentum in industry. Maintenance is considered as an activity that contributes to improving the availability, efficiency and productivity of each piece of equipment. Several techniques have been used to achieve greater efficiencies in maintenance, among which we can find the lean maintenance philosophy. Despi...

  16. Improvement in water-slurry circulation at the Chumakovskaya coal preparation plant

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nabokov, A.K.; Fedotov, B.P.; Mitlash, V.V.

    1988-02-01

    The Chumakovskaya coal preparation plant (Donetskugleobogashchenie association) was put into operation in 1935. It processes 570 t/h of coal slurry with an ash content of 38.6% and produces grade T coal for coking and power generation. Coal preparation technology used is described. Shortcomings of the system cause 130 kg of high ash slurries to be recirculated per m/sup 3/ of hydrocyclone drain. Mathematical analysis of the present process and of two improved variants is presented. The analysis permits variants for clarification of the recirculated water to be developed and evaluated and the best one to be selected. The optimum variant permits the amount of thin recirculated slurry to be reduced to 48% and the amount of granular slurry to 13%. Implementation of this variant at the Chumakovskaya coal preparation plant will ensure annual savings of 20,000 rubles.

  17. Improvement of ISI techniques by multi-frequency eddy current testing method for steam generator tube in PWR plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Endo, Takashi; Kamimura, Takeo; Nishihara, Masatoshi; Araki, Yasuo; Fukui, Shigetaka.

    1982-05-01

    Eddy current flaw detection techniques are applied to the in-service inspection (ISI) of steam generator tubes in pressurized water reactors (PWR) plant. To improve the reliability and operating efficiency of the plants, efforts are being made to develop eddy current testing methods of various kinds. Multi-frequency eddy current testing method, one of new method, has recently been applied to actual heat exchanger tubes, contributing to the improvement of the detectability and signal evaluation of the ISI. The outline of multi-frequency eddy current testing method and its effects on the improvement of flaw detecting and signal evaluation accuracy are described. (author)

  18. Introducing Model Predictive Control for Improving Power Plant Portfolio Performance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Edlund, Kristian Skjoldborg; Bendtsen, Jan Dimon; Børresen, Simon

    2008-01-01

    This paper introduces a model predictive control (MPC) approach for construction of a controller for balancing the power generation against consumption in a power system. The objective of the controller is to coordinate a portfolio consisting of multiple power plant units in the effort to perform...... reference tracking and disturbance rejection in an economically optimal way. The performance function is chosen as a mixture of the `1-norm and a linear weighting to model the economics of the system. Simulations show a significant improvement of the performance of the MPC compared to the current...

  19. Overexpression of AtGRDP2, a novel glycine-rich domain protein, accelerates plant growth and improves stress tolerance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Azucena Ortega-Amaro

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Proteins with glycine-rich signatures have been reported in a wide variety of organisms including plants, mammalians, fungi, and bacteria. Plant glycine-rich protein genes exhibit developmental and tissue-specific expression patterns. Herein, we present the characterization of the AtGRDP2 gene using Arabidopsis null and knockdown mutants and, Arabidopsis and lettuce over-expression lines. AtGRDP2 encodes a short glycine-rich domain protein, containing a DUF1399 domain and a putative RNA recognition motif. AtGRDP2 transcript is mainly expressed in Arabidopsis floral organs, and its deregulation in Arabidopsis Atgrdp2 mutants and 35S::AtGRDP2 over-expression lines produces alterations in development. The 35S::AtGRDP2 over-expression lines grow faster than the WT, while the Atgrdp2 mutants have a delay in growth and development. The over-expression lines accumulate higher levels of indole-3-acetic acid and, have alterations in the expression pattern of ARF6, ARF8 and miR167 regulators of floral development and auxin signaling. Under salt stress conditions, 35S::AtGRDP2 over-expression lines displayed higher tolerance and increased expression of stress marker genes. Likewise, transgenic lettuce plants over-expressing the AtGRDP2 gene manifest increased growth rate and early flowering time. Our data reveal an important role for AtGRDP2 in Arabidopsis development and stress response, and suggest a connection between AtGRDP2 and auxin signaling.

  20. Improvements in steam cycle electric power generating plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bienvenu, Claude.

    1973-01-01

    The invention relates to a steam cycle electric energy generating plants of the type comprising a fossil or nuclear fuel boiler for generating steam and a turbo alternator group, the turbine of which is fed by the boiler steam. The improvement is characterized in that use is made of a second energy generating group in which a fluid (e.g. ammoniac) undergoes a condensation cycle the heat source of said cycle being obtained through a direct or indirect heat exchange with a portion of the boiler generated steam whereby it is possible without overloading the turbo-alternator group, to accomodate any increase of the boiler power resulting from the use of another fuel while maintaining a maximum energy output. This can be applied to electric power stations [fr

  1. Leaf phenotypic variation and developmental instability in relation to different light regimes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henrique Venâncio

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT For pioneer plants, shaded habitats represent a stressful condition, where sunlight exposure is below the optimum level and so leaves expand in order to intercept a greater amount of light. We investigated changes in both phenotypic variation and stress of Bauhinia brevipes in sunny and shaded microhabitats. Leaf area was used as a measure of phenotypic variation, whereas leaf asymmetry (difference between right and left sides of leaves, was used as a measure of stress. We hypothesized an increase in leaf area and stress in shaded locations, which might indicate that B. brevipes was compensating for low light absorption, and elevated levels of stress, respectively. Plants in the sun fitted a fluctuating asymmetry pattern (normal distribution of right minus left sides, while shaded plants were clearly antisymmetric (bimodal distribution of leaf side differences. Leaf asymmetry and area were 5% and 26.8% higher in plants in the shade compared to plants in the sun, respectively. These results were expected since B. brevipes is found predominantly in open areas; so sunlight exposure is important for its development. The presence of antisymmetry is rare in studies of developmental instability, and here it might indicate higher stress compared to plants with fluctuating asymmetry.

  2. Neuroimaging of developmental psychopathologies: the importance of self-regulatory and neuroplastic processes in adolescence

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Spessot, Alexandra L; Plessen, Kerstin J; Peterson, Bradley S

    2004-01-01

    Normal brain maturational and developmental processes, together with plastic reorganization of the brain in response to experiential demands, contribute to the acquisition of improved capacities for self-regulation and impulse control during adolescence. The frontal lobe is a main focus for these......Normal brain maturational and developmental processes, together with plastic reorganization of the brain in response to experiential demands, contribute to the acquisition of improved capacities for self-regulation and impulse control during adolescence. The frontal lobe is a main focus...... for these developmental and plastic processes during the transition from adolescence into adulthood. Tourette syndrome (TS), defined as the chronic presence of motor and vocal tics, has been increasingly conceptualized as a disorder of impaired self-regulatory control. This disordered control is thought to give rise...... to semicompulsory urges to perform the movements that constitute simple tics, complex tics, or compulsions. Neuroimaging studies suggest that the expression of the genetic diathesis to TS is influenced by genetic and nongenetic factors affecting activity-dependent reorganization of neuroregulatory systems, thereby...

  3. Neuroimaging of developmental psychopathologies: the importance of self-regulatory and neuroplastic processes in adolescence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spessot, Alexandra L; Plessen, Kerstin J; Peterson, Bradley S

    2004-06-01

    Normal brain maturational and developmental processes, together with plastic reorganization of the brain in response to experiential demands, contribute to the acquisition of improved capacities for self-regulation and impulse control during adolescence. The frontal lobe is a main focus for these developmental and plastic processes during the transition from adolescence into adulthood. Tourette syndrome (TS), defined as the chronic presence of motor and vocal tics, has been increasingly conceptualized as a disorder of impaired self-regulatory control. This disordered control is thought to give rise to semicompulsory urges to perform the movements that constitute simple tics, complex tics, or compulsions. Neuroimaging studies suggest that the expression of the genetic diathesis to TS is influenced by genetic and nongenetic factors affecting activity-dependent reorganization of neuroregulatory systems, thereby influencing the phenotype, illness severity, and adult outcome of tic disorders. Similar developmental processes during adolescence likely determine the phenotype and natural history of a broad range of other complex neuropsychiatric disorders of childhood onset, and they likely contribute to the acquisition of improved self-regulatory capacities that characterize normal adolescent development.

  4. Impact of a "No Mobile Device" Policy on Developmental Surveillance in a Pediatric Clinic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Regan, Paul A; Fogel, Benjamin S; Hicks, Steven D

    2018-04-01

    Children commonly use mobile devices at pediatric office visits. This practice may affect patient-provider interaction and undermine accuracy of developmental surveillance. A randomized, provider-blinded, controlled trial examined whether a policy prohibiting mobile device use in a pediatric clinic improved accuracy of pediatricians' developmental surveillance. Children, aged 18 to 36 months, were randomized to device-prohibited (intervention; n = 58) or device-allowed (control; n = 54) groups. After a 30-minute well-visit, development was evaluated as "normal," "borderline," or "delayed" in 5 categories using the Ages and Stages Questionnaire (ASQ-3). ASQ-3 results were compared with providers' clinical assessment in each category. Provider-ASQ discrepancies were more common for intervention participants ( P = .025). Providers "missed" more ASQ-3 "delayed" scores ( P = .005) in the intervention group, particularly in the fine motor domain ( P = .018). Prohibiting mobile device use at well-visits did not improve accuracy of providers' developmental surveillance. Mobile devices may entertain children at well-visits, allowing opportunities for parent-provider discussion, or observation of fine motor skills.

  5. Using virtual reality environment to improve joint attention associated with pervasive developmental disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Yufang; Huang, Ruowen

    2012-01-01

    The focus of this study is using data glove to practice Joint attention skill in virtual reality environment for people with pervasive developmental disorder (PDD). The virtual reality environment provides a safe environment for PDD people. Especially, when they made errors during practice in virtual reality environment, there is no suffering or dangerous consequences to deal with. Joint attention is a critical skill in the disorder characteristics of children with PDD. The absence of joint attention is a deficit frequently affects their social relationship in daily life. Therefore, this study designed the Joint Attention Skills Learning (JASL) systems with data glove tool to