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Sample records for micromachine wedge stepping

  1. Group sequential designs for stepped-wedge cluster randomised trials.

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    Grayling, Michael J; Wason, James Ms; Mander, Adrian P

    2017-10-01

    The stepped-wedge cluster randomised trial design has received substantial attention in recent years. Although various extensions to the original design have been proposed, no guidance is available on the design of stepped-wedge cluster randomised trials with interim analyses. In an individually randomised trial setting, group sequential methods can provide notable efficiency gains and ethical benefits. We address this by discussing how established group sequential methodology can be adapted for stepped-wedge designs. Utilising the error spending approach to group sequential trial design, we detail the assumptions required for the determination of stepped-wedge cluster randomised trials with interim analyses. We consider early stopping for efficacy, futility, or efficacy and futility. We describe first how this can be done for any specified linear mixed model for data analysis. We then focus on one particular commonly utilised model and, using a recently completed stepped-wedge cluster randomised trial, compare the performance of several designs with interim analyses to the classical stepped-wedge design. Finally, the performance of a quantile substitution procedure for dealing with the case of unknown variance is explored. We demonstrate that the incorporation of early stopping in stepped-wedge cluster randomised trial designs could reduce the expected sample size under the null and alternative hypotheses by up to 31% and 22%, respectively, with no cost to the trial's type-I and type-II error rates. The use of restricted error maximum likelihood estimation was found to be more important than quantile substitution for controlling the type-I error rate. The addition of interim analyses into stepped-wedge cluster randomised trials could help guard against time-consuming trials conducted on poor performing treatments and also help expedite the implementation of efficacious treatments. In future, trialists should consider incorporating early stopping of some kind into

  2. Physical Analysis of Cross-Wedge Rolling Process of a Stepped Shaft

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    Łukasz Wójcik

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available The paper presents experimental- model research results on the process of cross-wedge rolling of an axially-symmetrical element (stepped shaft. During research was used plastic mass on the basis of waxes in black and white colour. The aim of this experimental research was to determine the best option of forming in terms of values obtained and the course of forces. Physical examination was carried out using specialist machines, that is model and laboratory cross-wedge rolling mill. Experimental analysis was carried out using billets with the temperature of 15°C, whereas the actual process was carried out for billet from C45 carbon steel of temperature 1150°C. The study compared the dimensions of the components obtained during rolling tests and forming forces obtained in the result of physical modeling with forces obtained during real tests.

  3. The optimal design of stepped wedge trials with equal allocation to sequences and a comparison to other trial designs.

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    Thompson, Jennifer A; Fielding, Katherine; Hargreaves, James; Copas, Andrew

    2017-12-01

    Background/Aims We sought to optimise the design of stepped wedge trials with an equal allocation of clusters to sequences and explored sample size comparisons with alternative trial designs. Methods We developed a new expression for the design effect for a stepped wedge trial, assuming that observations are equally correlated within clusters and an equal number of observations in each period between sequences switching to the intervention. We minimised the design effect with respect to (1) the fraction of observations before the first and after the final sequence switches (the periods with all clusters in the control or intervention condition, respectively) and (2) the number of sequences. We compared the design effect of this optimised stepped wedge trial to the design effects of a parallel cluster-randomised trial, a cluster-randomised trial with baseline observations, and a hybrid trial design (a mixture of cluster-randomised trial and stepped wedge trial) with the same total cluster size for all designs. Results We found that a stepped wedge trial with an equal allocation to sequences is optimised by obtaining all observations after the first sequence switches and before the final sequence switches to the intervention; this means that the first sequence remains in the control condition and the last sequence remains in the intervention condition for the duration of the trial. With this design, the optimal number of sequences is [Formula: see text], where [Formula: see text] is the cluster-mean correlation, [Formula: see text] is the intracluster correlation coefficient, and m is the total cluster size. The optimal number of sequences is small when the intracluster correlation coefficient and cluster size are small and large when the intracluster correlation coefficient or cluster size is large. A cluster-randomised trial remains more efficient than the optimised stepped wedge trial when the intracluster correlation coefficient or cluster size is small. A

  4. Inadequacy of ethical conduct and reporting of stepped wedge cluster randomized trials: Results from a systematic review.

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    Taljaard, Monica; Hemming, Karla; Shah, Lena; Giraudeau, Bruno; Grimshaw, Jeremy M; Weijer, Charles

    2017-08-01

    Background/aims The use of the stepped wedge cluster randomized design is rapidly increasing. This design is commonly used to evaluate health policy and service delivery interventions. Stepped wedge cluster randomized trials have unique characteristics that complicate their ethical interpretation. The 2012 Ottawa Statement provides comprehensive guidance on the ethical design and conduct of cluster randomized trials, and the 2010 CONSORT extension for cluster randomized trials provides guidelines for reporting. Our aims were to assess the adequacy of the ethical conduct and reporting of stepped wedge trials to date, focusing on research ethics review and informed consent. Methods We conducted a systematic review of stepped wedge cluster randomized trials in health research published up to 2014 in English language journals. We extracted details of study intervention and data collection procedures, as well as reporting of research ethics review and informed consent. Two reviewers independently extracted data from each trial; discrepancies were resolved through discussion. We identified the presence of any research participants at the cluster level and the individual level. We assessed ethical conduct by tabulating reporting of research ethics review and informed consent against the presence of research participants. Results Of 32 identified stepped wedge trials, only 24 (75%) reported review by a research ethics committee, and only 16 (50%) reported informed consent from any research participants-yet, all trials included research participants at some level. In the subgroup of 20 trials with research participants at cluster level, only 4 (20%) reported informed consent from such participants; in 26 trials with individual-level research participants, only 15 (58%) reported their informed consent. Interventions (regardless of whether targeting cluster- or individual-level participants) were delivered at the group level in more than two-thirds of trials; nine trials (28

  5. Novel Ordered Stepped-Wedge Cluster Trial Designs for Detecting Ebola Vaccine Efficacy Using a Spatially Structured Mathematical Model.

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    Ibrahim Diakite

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available During the 2014 Ebola virus disease (EVD outbreak, policy-makers were confronted with difficult decisions on how best to test the efficacy of EVD vaccines. On one hand, many were reluctant to withhold a vaccine that might prevent a fatal disease from study participants randomized to a control arm. On the other, regulatory bodies called for rigorous placebo-controlled trials to permit direct measurement of vaccine efficacy prior to approval of the products. A stepped-wedge cluster study (SWCT was proposed as an alternative to a more traditional randomized controlled vaccine trial to address these concerns. Here, we propose novel "ordered stepped-wedge cluster trial" (OSWCT designs to further mitigate tradeoffs between ethical concerns, logistics, and statistical rigor.We constructed a spatially structured mathematical model of the EVD outbreak in Sierra Leone. We used the output of this model to simulate and compare a series of stepped-wedge cluster vaccine studies. Our model reproduced the observed order of first case occurrence within districts of Sierra Leone. Depending on the infection risk within the trial population and the trial start dates, the statistical power to detect a vaccine efficacy of 90% varied from 14% to 32% for standard SWCT, and from 67% to 91% for OSWCTs for an alpha error of 5%. The model's projection of first case occurrence was robust to changes in disease natural history parameters.Ordering clusters in a step-wedge trial based on the cluster's underlying risk of infection as predicted by a spatial model can increase the statistical power of a SWCT. In the event of another hemorrhagic fever outbreak, implementation of our proposed OSWCT designs could improve statistical power when a step-wedge study is desirable based on either ethical concerns or logistical constraints.

  6. Impact of elementary school-located influenza vaccinations: A stepped wedge trial across a community.

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    Szilagyi, Peter G; Schaffer, Stanley; Rand, Cynthia M; Goldstein, Nicolas P N; Hightower, A Dirk; Younge, Mary; Eagan, Ashley; Blumkin, Aaron; Albertin, Christina S; DiBitetto, Kristine; Concannon, Cathleen; Vincelli, Phyllis; Yoo, Byung-Kwang; Humiston, Sharon G

    2018-05-11

    Influenza vaccination rates among children are low and novel strategies are needed to raise coverage. We measured the impact of school-located influenza vaccination (SLIV) on coverage, examined whether SLIV substitutes for practice-based influenza vaccination ("substitution"), and estimated whether a second year of experience with SLIV increases its impact. We implemented a stepped wedge study design with schools as clusters. In Year 1, we randomly allocated schools to SLIV or control. In Year 2, all schools performed SLIV. We used emails (suburban schools) or backpack fliers (both urban and suburban schools) to notify parents, and offered web-based (suburban) or paper-based vaccination (urban) consent forms. Local health department nurses administered SLIV vaccinations and billed insurers. We analyzed state immunization registry data to measure influenza vaccination rates. 42 schools (38,078 children) participated over 2 years. Overall vaccination rates were 5 and 7 percentage points higher among SLIV- school children versus control-school children in suburban (aOR 1.36, 95% CI 1.25-1.49 in Years 1-2 SLIV vs. Year 1 control schools) and urban schools (aOR 1.22, 95% CI 1.10-1.36), respectively, adjusting for prior year's vaccination and other covariates. While no substitution occurred among children attending suburban schools, some substitution occurred among children attending urban schools, although overall vaccination rates were still higher in urban schools due to SLIV. Compared to an initial year of SLIV, more children were vaccinated in a second year of SLIV at urban (8.3% vs. 6.8%, aOR 1.24, 95% CI 1.04-1.47) but not suburban schools (3.5% vs. 2.7%, aOR 1.24, 95% CI 0.98-1.57). In this stepped wedge trial, SLIV increased overall influenza vaccination rates in suburban and urban schools. Some substitution for primary care vaccination occurred in urban settings. A second year of SLIV expanded its reach slightly in urban schools. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier

  7. Unequal cluster sizes in stepped-wedge cluster randomised trials: a systematic review.

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    Kristunas, Caroline; Morris, Tom; Gray, Laura

    2017-11-15

    To investigate the extent to which cluster sizes vary in stepped-wedge cluster randomised trials (SW-CRT) and whether any variability is accounted for during the sample size calculation and analysis of these trials. Any, not limited to healthcare settings. Any taking part in an SW-CRT published up to March 2016. The primary outcome is the variability in cluster sizes, measured by the coefficient of variation (CV) in cluster size. Secondary outcomes include the difference between the cluster sizes assumed during the sample size calculation and those observed during the trial, any reported variability in cluster sizes and whether the methods of sample size calculation and methods of analysis accounted for any variability in cluster sizes. Of the 101 included SW-CRTs, 48% mentioned that the included clusters were known to vary in size, yet only 13% of these accounted for this during the calculation of the sample size. However, 69% of the trials did use a method of analysis appropriate for when clusters vary in size. Full trial reports were available for 53 trials. The CV was calculated for 23 of these: the median CV was 0.41 (IQR: 0.22-0.52). Actual cluster sizes could be compared with those assumed during the sample size calculation for 14 (26%) of the trial reports; the cluster sizes were between 29% and 480% of that which had been assumed. Cluster sizes often vary in SW-CRTs. Reporting of SW-CRTs also remains suboptimal. The effect of unequal cluster sizes on the statistical power of SW-CRTs needs further exploration and methods appropriate to studies with unequal cluster sizes need to be employed. © Article author(s) (or their employer(s) unless otherwise stated in the text of the article) 2017. All rights reserved. No commercial use is permitted unless otherwise expressly granted.

  8. Bias and inference from misspecified mixed-effect models in stepped wedge trial analysis.

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    Thompson, Jennifer A; Fielding, Katherine L; Davey, Calum; Aiken, Alexander M; Hargreaves, James R; Hayes, Richard J

    2017-10-15

    Many stepped wedge trials (SWTs) are analysed by using a mixed-effect model with a random intercept and fixed effects for the intervention and time periods (referred to here as the standard model). However, it is not known whether this model is robust to misspecification. We simulated SWTs with three groups of clusters and two time periods; one group received the intervention during the first period and two groups in the second period. We simulated period and intervention effects that were either common-to-all or varied-between clusters. Data were analysed with the standard model or with additional random effects for period effect or intervention effect. In a second simulation study, we explored the weight given to within-cluster comparisons by simulating a larger intervention effect in the group of the trial that experienced both the control and intervention conditions and applying the three analysis models described previously. Across 500 simulations, we computed bias and confidence interval coverage of the estimated intervention effect. We found up to 50% bias in intervention effect estimates when period or intervention effects varied between clusters and were treated as fixed effects in the analysis. All misspecified models showed undercoverage of 95% confidence intervals, particularly the standard model. A large weight was given to within-cluster comparisons in the standard model. In the SWTs simulated here, mixed-effect models were highly sensitive to departures from the model assumptions, which can be explained by the high dependence on within-cluster comparisons. Trialists should consider including a random effect for time period in their SWT analysis model. © 2017 The Authors. Statistics in Medicine published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd. © 2017 The Authors. Statistics in Medicine published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  9. Stepped-Wedge Cluster Randomized Controlled Trial to Promote Option B+ Retention in Central Mozambique.

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    Pfeiffer, James T; Napúa, Manuel; Wagenaar, Bradley H; Chale, Falume; Hoek, Roxanne; Micek, Mark; Manuel, João; Michel, Cathy; Cowan, Jessica Greenberg; Cowan, James F; Gimbel, Sarah; Sherr, Kenneth; Gloyd, Stephen; Chapman, Rachel R

    2017-11-01

    This randomized trial studied performance of Option B+ in Mozambique and evaluated an enhanced retention package in public clinics. The study was conducted at 6 clinics in Manica and Sofala Provinces in central Mozambique. Seven hundred sixty-one pregnant women tested HIV+, immediately initiated antiretroviral (ARV) therapy, and were followed to track retention at 6 clinics from May 2014 to May 2015. Clinics were randomly allocated within a stepped-wedge fashion to intervention and control periods. The intervention included (1) workflow modifications and (2) active patient tracking. Retention was defined as percentage of patients returning for 30-, 60-, and 90-day medication refills within 25-35 days of previous refills. During control periods, 52.3% of women returned for 30-day refills vs. 70.8% in intervention periods [odds ratio (OR): 1.80; 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.05 to 3.08]. At 60 days, 46.1% control vs. 57.9% intervention were retained (OR: 1.82; CI: 1.06 to 3.11), and at 90 days, 38.3% control vs. 41.0% intervention (OR: 1.04; CI: 0.60 to 1.82). In prespecified subanalyses, birth before pickups was strongly associated with failure-women giving birth before ARV pickup were 33.3 times (CI: 4.4 to 250.3), 7.5 times (CI: 3.6 to 15.9), and 3.7 times (CI: 2.2 to 6.0) as likely to not return for ARV pickups at 30, 60, and 90 days, respectively. The intervention was effective at 30 and 60 days, but not at 90 days. Combined 90-day retention (40%) and adherence (22.5%) were low. Efforts to improve retention are particularly important for women giving birth before ARV refills.

  10. Precommitting to choose wisely about low-value services: a stepped wedge cluster randomised trial.

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    Kullgren, Jeffrey Todd; Krupka, Erin; Schachter, Abigail; Linden, Ariel; Miller, Jacquelyn; Acharya, Yubraj; Alford, James; Duffy, Richard; Adler-Milstein, Julia

    2018-05-01

    Little is known about how to discourage clinicians from ordering low-value services. Our objective was to test whether clinicians committing their future selves (ie, precommitting) to follow Choosing Wisely recommendations with decision supports could decrease potentially low-value orders. We conducted a 12-month stepped wedge cluster randomised trial among 45 primary care physicians and advanced practice providers in six adult primary care clinics of a US community group practice.Clinicians were invited to precommit to Choosing Wisely recommendations against imaging for uncomplicated low back pain, imaging for uncomplicated headaches and unnecessary antibiotics for acute sinusitis. Clinicians who precommitted received 1-6 months of point-of-care precommitment reminders as well as patient education handouts and weekly emails with resources to support communication about low-value services.The primary outcome was the difference between control and intervention period percentages of visits with potentially low-value orders. Secondary outcomes were differences between control and intervention period percentages of visits with possible alternate orders, and differences between control and 3-month postintervention follow-up period percentages of visits with potentially low-value orders. The intervention was not associated with a change in the percentage of visits with potentially low-value orders overall, for headaches or for acute sinusitis, but was associated with a 1.7% overall increase in alternate orders (p=0.01). For low back pain, the intervention was associated with a 1.2% decrease in the percentage of visits with potentially low-value orders (p=0.001) and a 1.9% increase in the percentage of visits with alternate orders (p=0.007). No changes were sustained in follow-up. Clinician precommitment to follow Choosing Wisely recommendations was associated with a small, unsustained decrease in potentially low-value orders for only one of three targeted conditions and

  11. The efficacy of Protected Mealtimes in hospitalised patients: a stepped wedge cluster randomised controlled trial.

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    Porter, Judi; Haines, Terry P; Truby, Helen

    2017-02-07

    Protected Mealtimes is an intervention developed to address the problem of malnutrition in hospitalised patients through increasing positive interruptions (such as feeding assistance) whilst minimising unnecessary interruptions (including ward rounds and diagnostic procedures) during mealtimes. This clinical trial aimed to measure the effect of implementing Protected Mealtimes on the energy and protein intake of patients admitted to the subacute setting. A prospective, stepped wedge cluster randomised controlled trial was undertaken across three hospital sites at one health network in Melbourne, Australia. All patients, except those receiving end-of-life care or not receiving oral nutrition, admitted to these wards during the study period participated. The intervention was guided by the British Hospital Caterers Association reference policy on Protected Mealtimes and by principles of implementation science. Primary outcome measures were daily energy and protein intake. The study was powered to determine whether the intervention closed the daily energy deficit between estimated intake and energy requirements measured as 1900 kJ/day in the pilot study for this trial. There were 149 unique participants, including 38 who crossed over from the control to intervention period as the Protected Mealtimes intervention was implemented. In total, 416 observations of 24-hour food intake were obtained. Energy intake was not significantly different between the intervention ([mean ± SD] 6479 ± 2486 kJ/day) and control (6532 ± 2328 kJ/day) conditions (p = 0.88). Daily protein intake was also not significantly different between the intervention (68.6 ± 26.0 g/day) and control (67.0 ± 25.2 g/day) conditions (p = 0.86). The differences between estimated energy/protein requirements and estimated energy/protein intakes were also limited between groups. The adjusted analysis yielded significant findings for energy deficit: (coefficient [robust 95% CI], p

  12. Stepped-wedge cluster randomised controlled trials: a generic framework including parallel and multiple-level designs.

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    Hemming, Karla; Lilford, Richard; Girling, Alan J

    2015-01-30

    Stepped-wedge cluster randomised trials (SW-CRTs) are being used with increasing frequency in health service evaluation. Conventionally, these studies are cross-sectional in design with equally spaced steps, with an equal number of clusters randomised at each step and data collected at each and every step. Here we introduce several variations on this design and consider implications for power. One modification we consider is the incomplete cross-sectional SW-CRT, where the number of clusters varies at each step or where at some steps, for example, implementation or transition periods, data are not collected. We show that the parallel CRT with staggered but balanced randomisation can be considered a special case of the incomplete SW-CRT. As too can the parallel CRT with baseline measures. And we extend these designs to allow for multiple layers of clustering, for example, wards within a hospital. Building on results for complete designs, power and detectable difference are derived using a Wald test and obtaining the variance-covariance matrix of the treatment effect assuming a generalised linear mixed model. These variations are illustrated by several real examples. We recommend that whilst the impact of transition periods on power is likely to be small, where they are a feature of the design they should be incorporated. We also show examples in which the power of a SW-CRT increases as the intra-cluster correlation (ICC) increases and demonstrate that the impact of the ICC is likely to be smaller in a SW-CRT compared with a parallel CRT, especially where there are multiple levels of clustering. Finally, through this unified framework, the efficiency of the SW-CRT and the parallel CRT can be compared. © 2014 The Authors. Statistics in Medicine Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  13. A structural multidisciplinary approach to depression management in nursing-home residents: a multicentre, stepped-wedge cluster-randomised trial

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Leontjevas, R.; Gerritsen, D.L.; Smalbrugge, M.; Teerenstra, S.; Vernooij-Dassen, M.J.F.J.; Koopmans, R.T.C.M.

    2013-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Depression in nursing-home residents is often under-recognised. We aimed to establish the effectiveness of a structural approach to its management. METHODS: Between May 15, 2009, and April 30, 2011, we undertook a multicentre, stepped-wedge cluster-randomised trial in four provinces of

  14. Cost-Effectiveness of a Chronic Care Model for Frail Older Adults in Primary Care: Economic Evaluation Alongside a Stepped-Wedge Cluster-Randomized Trial

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Leeuwen, K.M.; Bosmans, J.E.; Jansen, A.P.D.; Hoogendijk, E.O.; Muntinga, M.E.; van Hout, H.P.J.; Nijpels, G.; van der Horst, H.E.; van Tulder, M.W.

    2015-01-01

    Objectives To evaluate the cost-effectiveness of the Geriatric Care Model (GCM), an integrated care model for frail older adults based on the Chronic Care Model, with that of usual care. Design Economic evaluation alongside a 24-month stepped-wedge cluster-randomized controlled trial. Setting

  15. Cost-Effectiveness of a Chronic Care Model for Frail Older Adults in Primary Care : Economic Evaluation Alongside a Stepped-Wedge Cluster-Randomized Trial

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Leeuwen, Karen M; Bosmans, Judith E; Jansen, Aaltje P D; Hoogendijk, Emiel O; Muntinga, Maaike E; van Hout, Hein P J; Nijpels, Giel; van der Horst, Henriette E; van Tulder, Maurits W

    2015-01-01

    OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the cost-effectiveness of the Geriatric Care Model (GCM), an integrated care model for frail older adults based on the Chronic Care Model, with that of usual care. DESIGN: Economic evaluation alongside a 24-month stepped-wedge cluster-randomized controlled trial. SETTING:

  16. Neoadjuvant chemoradiotherapy plus surgery versus active surveillance for oesophageal cancer: a stepped-wedge cluster randomised trial.

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    Noordman, Bo Jan; Wijnhoven, Bas P L; Lagarde, Sjoerd M; Boonstra, Jurjen J; Coene, Peter Paul L O; Dekker, Jan Willem T; Doukas, Michael; van der Gaast, Ate; Heisterkamp, Joos; Kouwenhoven, Ewout A; Nieuwenhuijzen, Grard A P; Pierie, Jean-Pierre E N; Rosman, Camiel; van Sandick, Johanna W; van der Sangen, Maurice J C; Sosef, Meindert N; Spaander, Manon C W; Valkema, Roelf; van der Zaag, Edwin S; Steyerberg, Ewout W; van Lanschot, J Jan B

    2018-02-06

    Neoadjuvant chemoradiotherapy (nCRT) plus surgery is a standard treatment for locally advanced oesophageal cancer. With this treatment, 29% of patients have a pathologically complete response in the resection specimen. This provides the rationale for investigating an active surveillance approach. The aim of this study is to assess the (cost-)effectiveness of active surveillance vs. standard oesophagectomy after nCRT for oesophageal cancer. This is a phase-III multi-centre, stepped-wedge cluster randomised controlled trial. A total of 300 patients with clinically complete response (cCR, i.e. no local or disseminated disease proven by histology) after nCRT will be randomised to show non-inferiority of active surveillance to standard oesophagectomy (non-inferiority margin 15%, intra-correlation coefficient 0.02, power 80%, 2-sided α 0.05, 12% drop-out). Patients will undergo a first clinical response evaluation (CRE-I) 4-6 weeks after nCRT, consisting of endoscopy with bite-on-bite biopsies of the primary tumour site and other suspected lesions. Clinically complete responders will undergo a second CRE (CRE-II), 6-8 weeks after CRE-I. CRE-II will include 18F-FDG-PET-CT, followed by endoscopy with bite-on-bite biopsies and ultra-endosonography plus fine needle aspiration of suspected lymph nodes and/or PET- positive lesions. Patients with cCR at CRE-II will be assigned to oesophagectomy (first phase) or active surveillance (second phase of the study). The duration of the first phase is determined randomly over the 12 centres, i.e., stepped-wedge cluster design. Patients in the active surveillance arm will undergo diagnostic evaluations similar to CRE-II at 6/9/12/16/20/24/30/36/48 and 60 months after nCRT. In this arm, oesophagectomy will be offered only to patients in whom locoregional regrowth is highly suspected or proven, without distant dissemination. The main study parameter is overall survival; secondary endpoints include percentage of patients who do not

  17. Pressure ulcer multidisciplinary teams via telemedicine: a pragmatic cluster randomized stepped wedge trial in long term care.

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    Stern, Anita; Mitsakakis, Nicholas; Paulden, Mike; Alibhai, Shabbir; Wong, Josephine; Tomlinson, George; Brooker, Ann-Sylvia; Krahn, Murray; Zwarenstein, Merrick

    2014-02-24

    The study was conducted to determine the clinical and cost effectiveness of enhanced multi-disciplinary teams (EMDTs) vs. 'usual care' for the treatment of pressure ulcers in long term care (LTC) facilities in Ontario, Canada We conducted a multi-method study: a pragmatic cluster randomized stepped-wedge trial, ethnographic observation and in-depth interviews, and an economic evaluation. Long term care facilities (clusters) were randomly allocated to start dates of the intervention. An advance practice nurse (APN) with expertise in skin and wound care visited intervention facilities to educate staff on pressure ulcer prevention and treatment, supported by an off-site hospital based expert multi-disciplinary wound care team via email, telephone, or video link as needed. The primary outcome was rate of reduction in pressure ulcer surface area (cm2/day) measured on before and after standard photographs by an assessor blinded to facility allocation. Secondary outcomes were time to healing, probability of healing, pressure ulcer incidence, pressure ulcer prevalence, wound pain, hospitalization, emergency department visits, utility, and cost. 12 of 15 eligible LTC facilities were randomly selected to participate and randomized to start date of the intervention following the stepped wedge design. 137 residents with a total of 259 pressure ulcers (stage 2 or greater) were recruited over the 17 month study period. No statistically significant differences were found between control and intervention periods on any of the primary or secondary outcomes. The economic evaluation demonstrated a mean reduction in direct care costs of $650 per resident compared to 'usual care'. The qualitative study suggested that onsite support by APN wound specialists was welcomed, and is responsible for reduced costs through discontinuation of expensive non evidence based treatments. Insufficient allocation of nursing home staff time to wound care may explain the lack of impact on healing

  18. Mixed methods evaluation of targeted case finding for cardiovascular disease prevention using a stepped wedged cluster RCT

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    Marshall Tom

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background A pilot project cardiovascular prevention was implemented in Sandwell (West Midlands, UK. This used electronic primary care records to identify untreated patients at high risk of cardiovascular disease then invited these high risk patients for assessment by a nurse in their own general practice. Those found to be eligible for treatment were offered treatment. During the pilot a higher proportion of high risk patients were started on treatment in the intervention practices than in control practices. Following the apparent success of the prevention project, it was intended to extend the service to all practices across the Sandwell area. However the pilot project was not a robust evaluation. There was a need for an efficient evaluation that would not disrupt the planned rollout of the project. Methods/design Project nurses will sequentially implement targeted cardiovascular case finding in a phased way across all general practices, with the sequence of general practices determined randomly. This is a stepped wedge randomised controlled trial design. The target population is patients aged 35 to 74, without diabetes or cardiovascular disease whose ten-year cardiovascular risk, (determined from data in their electronic records is ≥20%. The primary outcome is the number of high risk patients started on treatment, because these data could be efficiently obtained from electronic primary care records. From this we can determine the effects of the case finding programme on the proportion of high risk patients started on treatment in practices before and after implementation of targeted case finding. Cost-effectiveness will be modelled from the predicted effects of treatments on cardiovascular events and associated health service costs. Alongside the implementation it is intended to interview clinical staff and patients who participated in the programme in order to determine acceptability to patients and clinicians. Practical

  19. Supporting Policy In health with Research: an Intervention Trial (SPIRIT)—protocol for a stepped wedge trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Governments in different countries have committed to better use of evidence from research in policy. Although many programmes are directed at assisting agencies to better use research, there have been few tests of the effectiveness of such programmes. This paper describes the protocol for SPIRIT (Supporting Policy In health with Research: an Intervention Trial), a trial designed to test the effectiveness of a multifaceted programme to build organisational capacity for the use of research evidence in policy and programme development. The primary aim is to determine whether SPIRIT results in an increase in the extent to which research and research expertise is sought, appraised, generated and used in the development of specific policy products produced by health policy agencies. Methods and analysis A stepped wedge cluster randomised trial involving six health policy agencies located in Sydney, Australia. Policy agencies are the unit of randomisation and intervention. Agencies were randomly allocated to one of three start dates (steps) to receive the 1-year intervention programme, underpinned by an action framework. The SPIRIT intervention is tailored to suit the interests and needs of each agency and includes audit, feedback and goal setting; a leadership programme; staff training; the opportunity to test systems to assist in the use of research in policies; and exchange with researchers. Outcome measures will be collected at each agency every 6 months for 30 months (starting at the beginning of step 1). Ethics and dissemination Ethics approval was granted by the University of Western Sydney Human Research and Ethics Committee HREC Approval H8855. The findings of this study will be disseminated broadly through peer-reviewed publications and presentations at conferences and used to inform future strategies. PMID:24989620

  20. The impact of the carer support needs assessment tool (CSNAT in community palliative care using a stepped wedge cluster trial.

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    Samar M Aoun

    Full Text Available Family caregiving towards the end-of-life entails considerable emotional, social, financial and physical costs for caregivers. Evidence suggests that good support can improve caregiver psychological outcomes. The primary aim of this study was to investigate the impact of using the carer support needs assessment tool (CSNAT, as an intervention to identify and address support needs in end of life home care, on family caregiver outcomes. A stepped wedge design was used to trial the CSNAT intervention in three bases of Silver Chain Hospice Care in Western Australia, 2012-14. The intervention consisted of at least two visits from nurses (2-3 weeks apart to identify, review and address caregivers' needs. The outcome measures for the intervention and control groups were caregiver strain and distress as measured by the Family Appraisal of Caregiving Questionnaire (FACQ-PC, caregiver mental and physical health as measured by SF-12v2, and caregiver workload as measured by extent of caregiver assistance with activities of daily living, at baseline and follow up. Total recruitment was 620. There was 45% attrition for each group between baseline and follow-up mainly due to patient deaths resulting in 322 caregivers completing the study (233 in the intervention group and 89 in the control group. At follow-up, the intervention group showed significant reduction in caregiver strain relative to controls, p=0.018, d=0.348 (95% CI 0.25 to 0.41. Priority support needs identified by caregivers included knowing what to expect in the future, having time for yourself in the day and dealing with your feelings and worries. Despite the challenges at the clinician, organisational and trial levels, the CSNAT intervention led to an improvement in caregiver strain. Effective implementation of an evidence-informed and caregiver-led tool represents a necessary step towards helping palliative care providers better assess and address caregiver needs, ensuring adequate family

  1. Physics-based signal processing algorithms for micromachined cantilever arrays

    Science.gov (United States)

    Candy, James V; Clague, David S; Lee, Christopher L; Rudd, Robert E; Burnham, Alan K; Tringe, Joseph W

    2013-11-19

    A method of using physics-based signal processing algorithms for micromachined cantilever arrays. The methods utilize deflection of a micromachined cantilever that represents the chemical, biological, or physical element being detected. One embodiment of the method comprises the steps of modeling the deflection of the micromachined cantilever producing a deflection model, sensing the deflection of the micromachined cantilever and producing a signal representing the deflection, and comparing the signal representing the deflection with the deflection model.

  2. A multimodal intervention to improve hand hygiene in ICUs in Buenos Aires, Argentina: a stepped wedge trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez, Viviana; Giuffre, Carolina; Villa, Silvia; Almada, Griselda; Prasopa-Plaizier, Nittita; Gogna, Monica; Gibbons, Luz; García Elorrio, Ezequiel

    2015-10-01

    Hand hygiene is a cost-effective measure to reduce microbial transmission (Teare EL, Cookson B, French GL, et al. UK handwashing initiative. J Hosp Infect. 1999;43:1-3.) and is considered to be the most important measure to prevent healthcare-associated infections (Pittet D, Allegranzi B, Sax H, Evidence-based model for hand transmission during patient care and the role of improved practices. Lancet Infect Dis 2006;6:641-52). Unfortunately, the compliance rate of healthcare workers (HCWs) with recommended hand hygiene procedures is less than expected. In order to estimate the effect of a multimodal intervention on improving healthcare workers' compliance with hand hygiene in eleven intensive care units (ICUs) from 11 hospitals of Buenos Aires, a randomized cluster-stepped wedge trial was designed. A multimodal intervention was designed based on practices characterized by being evidence-based, low cost and suggested by qualitative research: (i) leadership commitment, (ii) surveillance of materials needed to comply with hand hygiene and alcohol consumption, (iii) utilization of reminders, (iv) a storyboard of the project and (v) feedback (hand hygiene compliance rate). The study enrolled 705 participants, comprising nurses (66.4%), physicians (25.8%) and other HCW (7.8%) along 9 months of observation. Compliance with hand hygiene in the control group was 66.0% (2354/3565) vs. 75.6% (5190/6864) in the intervention group. Univariate analysis showed an association between the intervention and hand hygiene compliance (odds ratio, OR 1.17; 95% confidence interval (CI), 1.13-1.22). The effect was still present after adjustment by calendar's time and providers' characteristics-age, gender and profession (OR 1.08; 95% CI, 1.03-1.14). His study supports that a multimodal intervention was effective to improve compliance with hand hygiene in ICUs. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press in association with the International Society for Quality in Health Care

  3. Physical micro-environment interventions for healthier eating in the workplace: protocol for a stepped wedge randomised controlled pilot trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vasiljevic, Milica; Cartwright, Emma; Pechey, Rachel; Hollands, Gareth J; Couturier, Dominique-Laurent; Jebb, Susan A; Marteau, Theresa M

    2017-01-01

    An estimated one third of energy is consumed in the workplace. The workplace is therefore an important context in which to reduce energy consumption to tackle the high rates of overweight and obesity in the general population. Altering environmental cues for food selection and consumption-physical micro-environment or 'choice architecture' interventions-has the potential to reduce energy intake. The first aim of this pilot trial is to estimate the potential impact upon energy purchased of three such environmental cues (size of portions, packages and tableware; availability of healthier vs. less healthy options; and energy labelling) in workplace cafeterias. A second aim of this pilot trial is to examine the feasibility of recruiting eligible worksites, and identify barriers to the feasibility and acceptability of implementing the interventions in preparation for a larger trial. Eighteen worksite cafeterias in England will be assigned to one of three intervention groups to assess the impact on energy purchased of altering (a) portion, package and tableware size ( n  = 6); (b) availability of healthier options ( n  = 6); and (c) energy (calorie) labelling ( n  = 6). Using a stepped wedge design, sites will implement allocated interventions at different time periods, as randomised. This pilot trial will examine the feasibility of recruiting eligible worksites, and the feasibility and acceptability of implementing the interventions in preparation for a larger trial. In addition, a series of linear mixed models will be used to estimate the impact of each intervention on total energy (calories) purchased per time frame of analysis (daily or weekly) controlling for the total sales/transactions adjusted for calendar time and with random effects for worksite. These analyses will allow an estimate of an effect size of each of the three proposed interventions, which will form the basis of the sample size calculations necessary for a larger trial. ISRCTN52923504.

  4. Impact on Prehospital Delay of a Stroke Preparedness Campaign: A SW-RCT (Stepped-Wedge Cluster Randomized Controlled Trial).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Denti, Licia; Caminiti, Caterina; Scoditti, Umberto; Zini, Andrea; Malferrari, Giovanni; Zedde, Maria Luisa; Guidetti, Donata; Baratti, Mario; Vaghi, Luca; Montanari, Enrico; Marcomini, Barbara; Riva, Silvia; Iezzi, Elisa; Castellini, Paola; Olivato, Silvia; Barbi, Filippo; Perticaroli, Eva; Monaco, Daniela; Iafelice, Ilaria; Bigliardi, Guido; Vandelli, Laura; Guareschi, Angelica; Artoni, Andrea; Zanferrari, Carla; Schulz, Peter J

    2017-12-01

    Public campaigns to increase stroke preparedness have been tested in different contexts, showing contradictory results. We evaluated the effectiveness of a stroke campaign, designed specifically for the Italian population in reducing prehospital delay. According to an SW-RCT (Stepped-Wedge Cluster Randomized Controlled Trial) design, the campaign was launched in 4 provinces in the northern part of the region Emilia Romagna at 3-month intervals in randomized sequence. The units of analysis were the patients admitted to hospital, with stroke and transient ischemic attack, over a time period of 15 months, beginning 3 months before the intervention was launched in the first province to allow for baseline data collection. The proportion of early arrivals (within 2 hours of symptom onset) was the primary outcome. Thrombolysis rate and some behavioral end points were the secondary outcomes. Data were analyzed using a fixed-effect model, adjusting for cluster and time trends. We enrolled 1622 patients, 912 exposed and 710 nonexposed to the campaign. The proportion of early access was nonsignificantly lower in exposed patients (354 [38.8%] versus 315 [44.4%]; adjusted odds ratio, 0.81; 95% confidence interval, 0.60-1.08; P =0.15). As for secondary end points, an increase was found for stroke recognition, which approximated but did not reach statistical significance ( P =0.07). Our campaign was not effective in reducing prehospital delay. Even if some limitations of the intervention, mainly in terms of duration, are taken into account, our study demonstrates that new communication strategies should be tested before large-scale implementation. URL: http://www.clinicaltrials.gov. Unique identifier: NCT01881152. © 2017 American Heart Association, Inc.

  5. The use of feasibility studies for stepped-wedge cluster randomised trials: protocol for a review of impact and scope.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kristunas, Caroline A; Hemming, Karla; Eborall, Helen C; Gray, Laura J

    2017-08-01

    The stepped-wedge cluster randomised trial (SW-CRT) is a complex design, for which many decisions about key design parameters must be made during the planning. These include the number of steps and the duration of time needed to embed the intervention. Feasibility studies are likely to be useful for informing these decisions and increasing the likelihood of the main trial's success. However, the number of feasibility studies being conducted for SW-CRTs is currently unknown. This review aims to establish the number of feasibility studies being conducted for SW-CRTs and determine which feasibility issues are commonly investigated. Fully published feasibility studies for SW-CRTs will be identified, according to predefined inclusion criteria, from searches conducted in Ovid MEDLINE, Scopus, Embase and PsycINFO. To also identify and gain information on unpublished feasibility studies the following will be contacted: authors of published SW-CRTs (identified from the most recent systematic reviews); contacts for registered SW-CRTs (identified from clinical trials registries); lead statisticians of UK registered clinical trials units and researchers known to work in the area of SW-CRTs.Data extraction will be conducted independently by two reviewers. For the fully published feasibility studies, data will be extracted on the study characteristics, the rationale for the study, the process for determining progression to a main trial, how the study informed the main trial and whether the main trial went ahead. The researchers involved in the unpublished feasibility studies will be contacted to elicit the same information.A narrative synthesis will be conducted and provided alongside a descriptive analysis of the study characteristics. This review does not require ethical approval, as no individual patient data will be used. The results of this review will be published in an open-access peer-reviewed journal. © Article author(s) (or their employer(s) unless otherwise stated in

  6. Statistical process control and verifying positional accuracy of a cobra motion couch using step-wedge quality assurance tool.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Binny, Diana; Lancaster, Craig M; Trapp, Jamie V; Crowe, Scott B

    2017-09-01

    This study utilizes process control techniques to identify action limits for TomoTherapy couch positioning quality assurance tests. A test was introduced to monitor accuracy of the applied couch offset detection in the TomoTherapy Hi-Art treatment system using the TQA "Step-Wedge Helical" module and MVCT detector. Individual X-charts, process capability (cp), probability (P), and acceptability (cpk) indices were used to monitor a 4-year couch IEC offset data to detect systematic and random errors in the couch positional accuracy for different action levels. Process capability tests were also performed on the retrospective data to define tolerances based on user-specified levels. A second study was carried out whereby physical couch offsets were applied using the TQA module and the MVCT detector was used to detect the observed variations. Random and systematic variations were observed for the SPC-based upper and lower control limits, and investigations were carried out to maintain the ongoing stability of the process for a 4-year and a three-monthly period. Local trend analysis showed mean variations up to ±0.5 mm in the three-monthly analysis period for all IEC offset measurements. Variations were also observed in the detected versus applied offsets using the MVCT detector in the second study largely in the vertical direction, and actions were taken to remediate this error. Based on the results, it was recommended that imaging shifts in each coordinate direction be only applied after assessing the machine for applied versus detected test results using the step helical module. User-specified tolerance levels of at least ±2 mm were recommended for a test frequency of once every 3 months to improve couch positional accuracy. SPC enables detection of systematic variations prior to reaching machine tolerance levels. Couch encoding system recalibrations reduced variations to user-specified levels and a monitoring period of 3 months using SPC facilitated in detecting

  7. Implementing international osteoarthritis treatment guidelines in primary health care: study protocol for the SAMBA stepped wedge cluster randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Østerås, Nina; van Bodegom-Vos, Leti; Dziedzic, Krysia; Moseng, Tuva; Aas, Eline; Andreassen, Øyvor; Mdala, Ibrahim; Natvig, Bård; Røtterud, Jan Harald; Schjervheim, Unni-Berit; Vlieland, Thea Vliet; Hagen, Kåre Birger

    2015-12-02

    Previous research indicates that people with osteoarthritis (OA) are not receiving the recommended and optimal treatment. Based on international treatment recommendations for hip and knee OA and previous research, the SAMBA model for integrated OA care in Norwegian primary health care has been developed. The model includes physiotherapist (PT) led patient OA education sessions and an exercise programme lasting 8-12 weeks. This study aims to assess the effectiveness, feasibility, and costs of a tailored strategy to implement the SAMBA model. A cluster randomized controlled trial with stepped wedge design including an effect, process, and cost evaluation will be conducted in six municipalities (clusters) in Norway. The municipalities will be randomized for time of crossover from current usual care to the implementation of the SAMBA model by a tailored strategy. The tailored strategy includes interactive workshops for general practitioners (GPs) and PTs in primary care covering the SAMBA model for integrated OA care, educational material, educational outreach visits, feedback, and reminder material. Outcomes will be measured at the patient, GP, and PT levels using self-report, semi-structured interviews, and register based data. The primary outcome measure is patient-reported quality of care (OsteoArthritis Quality Indicator questionnaire) at 6-month follow-up. Secondary outcomes include referrals to PT, imaging, and referrals to the orthopaedic surgeon as well as participants' treatment satisfaction, symptoms, physical activity level, body weight, and self-reported and measured lower limb function. The actual exposure to the tailor made implementation strategy and user experiences will be measured in a process evaluation. In the economic evaluation, the difference in costs of usual OA care and the SAMBA model for integrated OA care will be compared with the difference in health outcomes and reported by the incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER). The results

  8. Translating staff experience into organisational improvement: the HEADS-UP stepped wedge, cluster controlled, non-randomised trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Athanasiou, Thanos; Long, Susannah J; Beveridge, Iain; Sevdalis, Nick

    2017-01-01

    Objectives Frontline insights into care delivery correlate with patients’ clinical outcomes. These outcomes might be improved through near-real time identification and mitigation of staff concerns. We evaluated the effects of a prospective frontline surveillance system on patient and team outcomes. Design Prospective, stepped wedge, non-randomised, cluster controlled trial; prespecified per protocol analysis for high-fidelity intervention delivery. Participants Seven interdisciplinary medical ward teams from two hospitals in the UK. Intervention Prospective clinical team surveillance (PCTS): structured daily interdisciplinary briefings to capture staff concerns, with organisational facilitation and feedback. Main measures The primary outcome was excess length of stay (eLOS): an admission more than 24 hours above the local average for comparable patients. Secondary outcomes included safety and teamwork climates, and incident reporting. Mixed-effects models adjusted for time effects, age, comorbidity, palliation status and ward admissions. Safety and teamwork climates were measured with the Safety Attitudes Questionnaire. High-fidelity PCTS delivery comprised high engagement and high briefing frequency. Results Implementation fidelity was variable, both in briefing frequency (median 80% working days/month, IQR 65%–90%) and engagement (median 70 issues/ward/month, IQR 34–113). 1714/6518 (26.3%) intervention admissions had eLOS versus 1279/4927 (26.0%) control admissions, an absolute risk increase of 0.3%. PCTS increased eLOS in the adjusted intention-to-treat model (OR 1.32, 95% CI 1.10 to 1.58, p=0.003). Conversely, high-fidelity PCTS reduced eLOS (OR 0.79, 95% CI 0.67 to 0.94, p=0.006). High-fidelity PCTS also increased total, high-yield and non-nurse incident reports (incidence rate ratios 1.28–1.79, all p<0.002). Sustained PCTS significantly improved safety and teamwork climates over time. Conclusions This study highlighted the potential benefits and

  9. Effects of a free school breakfast programme on school attendance, achievement, psychosocial function, and nutrition: a stepped wedge cluster randomised trial

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maddison Ralph

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Approximately 55,000 children in New Zealand do not eat breakfast on any given day. Regular breakfast skipping has been associated with poor diets, higher body mass index, and adverse effects on children's behaviour and academic performance. Research suggests that regular breakfast consumption can improve academic performance, nutrition and behaviour. This paper describes the protocol for a stepped wedge cluster randomised trial of a free school breakfast programme. The aim of the trial is to determine the effects of the breakfast intervention on school attendance, achievement, psychosocial function, dietary habits and food security. Methods/Design Sixteen primary schools in the North Island of New Zealand will be randomised in a sequential stepped wedge design to a free before-school breakfast programme consisting of non-sugar coated breakfast cereal, milk products, and/or toast and spreads. Four hundred children aged 5-13 years (approximately 25 per school will be recruited. Data collection will be undertaken once each school term over the 2010 school year (February to December. The primary trial outcome is school attendance, defined as the proportion of students achieving an attendance rate of 95% or higher. Secondary outcomes are academic achievement (literacy, numeracy, self-reported grades, sense of belonging at school, psychosocial function, dietary habits, and food security. A concurrent process evaluation seeks information on parents', schools' and providers' perspectives of the breakfast programme. Discussion This randomised controlled trial will provide robust evidence of the effects of a school breakfast programme on students' attendance, achievement and nutrition. Furthermore the study provides an excellent example of the feasibility and value of the stepped wedge trial design in evaluating pragmatic public health intervention programmes. Trial Registration Number Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry

  10. Effects of a free school breakfast programme on school attendance, achievement, psychosocial function, and nutrition: a stepped wedge cluster randomised trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ni Mhurchu, Cliona; Turley, Maria; Gorton, Delvina; Jiang, Yannan; Michie, Jo; Maddison, Ralph; Hattie, John

    2010-11-29

    Approximately 55,000 children in New Zealand do not eat breakfast on any given day. Regular breakfast skipping has been associated with poor diets, higher body mass index, and adverse effects on children's behaviour and academic performance. Research suggests that regular breakfast consumption can improve academic performance, nutrition and behaviour. This paper describes the protocol for a stepped wedge cluster randomised trial of a free school breakfast programme. The aim of the trial is to determine the effects of the breakfast intervention on school attendance, achievement, psychosocial function, dietary habits and food security. Sixteen primary schools in the North Island of New Zealand will be randomised in a sequential stepped wedge design to a free before-school breakfast programme consisting of non-sugar coated breakfast cereal, milk products, and/or toast and spreads. Four hundred children aged 5-13 years (approximately 25 per school) will be recruited. Data collection will be undertaken once each school term over the 2010 school year (February to December). The primary trial outcome is school attendance, defined as the proportion of students achieving an attendance rate of 95% or higher. Secondary outcomes are academic achievement (literacy, numeracy, self-reported grades), sense of belonging at school, psychosocial function, dietary habits, and food security. A concurrent process evaluation seeks information on parents', schools' and providers' perspectives of the breakfast programme. This randomised controlled trial will provide robust evidence of the effects of a school breakfast programme on students' attendance, achievement and nutrition. Furthermore the study provides an excellent example of the feasibility and value of the stepped wedge trial design in evaluating pragmatic public health intervention programmes. Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry (ANZCTR) - ACTRN12609000854235.

  11. Provision of medical supply kits to improve quality of antenatal care in Mozambique: a stepped-wedge cluster randomised trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Betrán, Ana Pilar; Bergel, Eduardo; Griffin, Sally; Melo, Armando; Nguyen, My Huong; Carbonell, Alicia; Mondlane, Santos; Merialdi, Mario; Temmerman, Marleen; Gülmezoglu, A Metin

    2018-01-01

    High levels of maternal and newborn mortality and morbidity remain a daunting reality in many low-income countries. Several interventions delivered during antenatal care have been shown to improve maternal and newborn outcomes, but stockouts of medical supplies at point of care can prevent implementation of these services. We aimed to evaluate whether a supply chain strategy based on the provision of kits could improve quality of care. We did a pragmatic, stepped-wedge, cluster-randomised controlled trial at ten antenatal care clinics in Mozambique. Clinics were eligible if they were not already implementing the proposed antenatal care package; they served at least 200 new pregnant women per year; they had Maternal and Child Health (MCH) nurses; and they were willing to participate. All women attending antenatal care visits at the participating clinics were included in the trial. Participating clinics were randomly assigned to shift from control to intervention on prespecified start dates. The intervention involved four components (kits with medical supplies, a cupboard to store these supplies, a tracking sheet to monitor stocks, and a one-day training session). The primary outcomes were the proportion of women screened for anaemia and proteinuria, and the proportion of women who received mebendazole in the first antenatal care visit. The intervention was delivered under routine care conditions, and analyses were done according to the intention-to-treat principle. This trial is registered with the Pan African Clinical Trial Registry, number PACTR201306000550192. Between March, 2014, and January, 2016, 218 277 antenatal care visits were registered, with 68 598 first and 149 679 follow-up visits. We found significant improvements in all three primary outcomes. In first visits, 5519 (14·6%) of 37 826 women were screened for anaemia in the control period, compared with 30 057 (97·7%) of 30 772 in the intervention period (adjusted odds ratio 832·40; 99

  12. The prevention and reduction of weight loss in an acute tertiary care setting: protocol for a pragmatic stepped wedge randomised cluster trial (the PRoWL project)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    Background Malnutrition, with accompanying weight loss, is an unnecessary risk in hospitalised persons and often remains poorly recognised and managed. The study aims to evaluate a hospital-wide multifaceted intervention co-facilitated by clinical nurses and dietitians addressing the nutritional care of patients, particularly those at risk of malnutrition. Using the best available evidence on reducing and preventing unplanned weight loss, the intervention (introducing universal nutritional screening; the provision of oral nutritional supplements; and providing red trays and additional support for patients in need of feeding) will be introduced by local ward teams in a phased way in a large tertiary acute care hospital. Methods/Design A pragmatic stepped wedge randomised cluster trial with repeated cross section design will be conducted. The unit of randomisation is the ward, with allocation by a random numbers table. Four groups of wards (n = 6 for three groups, n = 7 for one group) will be randomly allocated to each intervention time point over the trial. Two trained local facilitators (a nurse and dietitian for each group) will introduce the intervention. The primary outcome measure is change in patient’s body weight, secondary patient outcomes are: length of stay, all-cause mortality, discharge destinations, readmission rates and ED presentations. Patient outcomes will be measured on one ward per group, with 20 patients measured per ward per time period by an unblinded researcher. Including baseline, measurements will be conducted at five time periods. Staff perspectives on the context of care will be measured with the Alberta Context Tool. Discussion Unplanned and unwanted weight loss in hospital is common. Despite the evidence and growing concern about hospital nutrition there are very few evaluations of system-wide nutritional implementation programs. This project will test the implementation of a nutritional intervention across one hospital system using a

  13. Wedges I

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    DeWitt-Morette, C.; Low, S.G.; Schulman, L.S.; Shiekh, A.Y.

    1986-01-01

    The wedge problem, that is, the propagation of radiation or particles in the presence of a wedge, is examined in different contexts. Generally, the paper follows the historical order from Sommerfeld's early work to recent stochastic results - hindsights and new results being woven in as appropriate. In each context, identifying the relevant mathematical problem has been the key to the solution. Thus each section can be given both a physics and a mathematics title: Section 2: diffraction by reflecting wedge; boundary value problem of differential equations; solutions defined on multiply connected spaces. Section 3: geometrical theory of diffraction; identification of function spaces. Section 4: path integral solutions; path integration on multiply connected spaces; asymptotics on the boundaries of function spaces. Section 5: probing the shape of the wedge and the roughness of its surface; stochastic calculus. Several propagators and Green functions are given explicitly, some old ones and some new ones. They include the knife-edge propagator for Dirichlet and Neumann boundary conditions, the absorbing knife edge propagator, the wedge propagators, the propagator for a free particle on a /sigma phi/-sheeted Riemann surface, the Dirichlet and the Neumann wedge Green function

  14. Micromachined Precision Inertial Instruments

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Najafi, Khalil

    2003-01-01

    This program focuses on developing inertial-grade micromachined accelerometers and gyroscopes and their associated electronics and packaging for use in a variety of military and commercial applications...

  15. The PULSAR Specialist Care protocol: a stepped-wedge cluster randomized control trial of a training intervention for community mental health teams in recovery-oriented practice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shawyer, Frances; Enticott, Joanne C; Brophy, Lisa; Bruxner, Annie; Fossey, Ellie; Inder, Brett; Julian, John; Kakuma, Ritsuko; Weller, Penelope; Wilson-Evered, Elisabeth; Edan, Vrinda; Slade, Mike; Meadows, Graham N

    2017-05-08

    Recovery features strongly in Australian mental health policy; however, evidence is limited for the efficacy of recovery-oriented practice at the service level. This paper describes the Principles Unite Local Services Assisting Recovery (PULSAR) Specialist Care trial protocol for a recovery-oriented practice training intervention delivered to specialist mental health services staff. The primary aim is to evaluate whether adult consumers accessing services where staff have received the intervention report superior recovery outcomes compared to adult consumers accessing services where staff have not yet received the intervention. A qualitative sub-study aims to examine staff and consumer views on implementing recovery-oriented practice. A process evaluation sub-study aims to articulate important explanatory variables affecting the interventions rollout and outcomes. The mixed methods design incorporates a two-step stepped-wedge cluster randomized controlled trial (cRCT) examining cross-sectional data from three phases, and nested qualitative and process evaluation sub-studies. Participating specialist mental health care services in Melbourne, Victoria are divided into 14 clusters with half randomly allocated to receive the staff training in year one and half in year two. Research participants are consumers aged 18-75 years who attended the cluster within a previous three-month period either at baseline, 12 (step 1) or 24 months (step 2). In the two nested sub-studies, participation extends to cluster staff. The primary outcome is the Questionnaire about the Process of Recovery collected from 756 consumers (252 each at baseline, step 1, step 2). Secondary and other outcomes measuring well-being, service satisfaction and health economic impact are collected from a subset of 252 consumers (63 at baseline; 126 at step 1; 63 at step 2) via interviews. Interview-based longitudinal data are also collected 12 months apart from 88 consumers with a psychotic disorder

  16. Balancing Opposing Forces—A Nested Process Evaluation Study Protocol for a Stepped Wedge Designed Cluster Randomized Controlled Trial of an Experience Based Codesign Intervention

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Victoria Jane Palmer

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Background: Process evaluations are essential to understand the contextual, relational, and organizational and system factors of complex interventions. The guidance for developing process evaluations for randomized controlled trials (RCTs has until recently however, been fairly limited. Method/Design: A nested process evaluation (NPE was designed and embedded across all stages of a stepped wedge cluster RCT called the CORE study. The aim of the CORE study is to test the effectiveness of an experience-based codesign methodology for improving psychosocial recovery outcomes for people living with severe mental illness (service users. Process evaluation data collection combines qualitative and quantitative methods with four aims: (1 to describe organizational characteristics, service models, policy contexts, and government reforms and examine the interaction of these with the intervention; (2 to understand how the codesign intervention works, the cluster variability in implementation, and if the intervention is or is not sustained in different settings; (3 to assist in the interpretation of the primary and secondary outcomes and determine if the causal assumptions underpinning the codesign interventions are accurate; and (4 to determine the impact of a purposefully designed engagement model on the broader study retention and knowledge transfer in the trial. Discussion: Process evaluations require prespecified study protocols but finding a balance between their iterative nature and the structure offered by protocol development is an important step forward. Taking this step will advance the role of qualitative research within trials research and enable more focused data collection to occur at strategic points within studies.

  17. A knowledge translation collaborative to improve the use of therapeutic hypothermia in post-cardiac arrest patients: protocol for a stepped wedge randomized trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dainty, Katie N; Scales, Damon C; Brooks, Steve C; Needham, Dale M; Dorian, Paul; Ferguson, Niall; Rubenfeld, Gordon; Wax, Randy; Zwarenstein, Merrick; Thorpe, Kevin; Morrison, Laurie J

    2011-01-14

    Advances in resuscitation science have dramatically improved survival rates following cardiac arrest. However, about 60% of adults that regain spontaneous circulation die before leaving the hospital. Recently it has been shown that inducing hypothermia in cardiac arrest survivors immediately following their arrival in hospital can dramatically improve both overall survival and neurological outcomes. Despite the strong evidence for its efficacy and the apparent simplicity of this intervention, recent surveys show that therapeutic hypothermia is delivered inconsistently, incompletely, and often with delay. This study will evaluate a multi-faceted knowledge translation strategy designed to increase the utilization rate of induced hypothermia in survivors of cardiac arrest across a network of 37 hospitals in Southwestern Ontario, Canada. The study is designed as a stepped wedge randomized trial lasting two years. Individual hospitals will be randomly assigned to four different wedges that will receive the active knowledge translation strategy according to a sequential rollout over a number of time periods. By the end of the study, all hospitals will have received the intervention. The primary aim is to measure the effectiveness of a multifaceted knowledge translation plan involving education, reminders, and audit-feedback for improving the use of induced hypothermia in survivors of cardiac arrest presenting to the emergency department. The primary outcome is the proportion of eligible OHCA patients that are cooled to a body temperature of 32 to 34°C within six hours of arrival in the hospital. Secondary outcomes will include process of care measures and clinical outcomes. Inducing hypothermia in cardiac arrest survivors immediately following their arrival to hospital has been shown to dramatically improve both overall survival and neurological outcomes. However, this lifesaving treatment is frequently not applied in practice. If this trial is positive, our results

  18. Assessment of radiopacity of restorative composite resins with various target distances and exposure times and a modified aluminum step wedge

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bejeh Mir, Arash Poorsattar [Dentistry Student Research Committee (DSRC), Dental Materials Research Center, Dentistry School, Babol University of Medical Sciences, Babol (Iran, Islamic Republic of); Bejeh Mir, Morvarid Poorsattar [Private Practice of Orthodontics, Montreal, Quebec (Canada)

    2012-09-15

    ANSI/ADA has established standards for adequate radiopacity. This study was aimed to assess the changes in radiopacity of composite resins according to various tube-target distances and exposure times. Five 1-mm thick samples of Filtek P60 and Clearfil composite resins were prepared and exposed with six tube-target distance/exposure time setups (i.e., 40 cm, 0.2 seconds; 30 cm, 0.2 seconds; 30 cm, 0.16 seconds, 30 cm, 0.12 seconds; 15 cm, 0.2 seconds; 15 cm, 0.12 seconds) performing at 70 kVp and 7 mA along with a 12-step aluminum stepwedge (1 mm incremental steps) using a PSP digital sensor. Thereafter, the radiopacities measured with Digora for Windows software 2.5 were converted to absorbencies (i.e., A=-log (1-G/255)), where A is the absorbency and G is the measured gray scale). Furthermore, the linear regression model of aluminum thickness and absorbency was developed and used to convert the radiopacity of dental materials to the equivalent aluminum thickness. In addition, all calculations were compared with those obtained from a modified 3-step stepwedge (i.e., using data for the 2nd, 5th, and 8th steps). The radiopacities of the composite resins differed significantly with various setups (p<0.001) and between the materials (p<0.001). The best predicted model was obtained for the 30 cm 0.2 seconds setup (R2=0.999). Data from the reduced modified stepwedge was remarkable and comparable with the 12-step stepwedge. Within the limits of the present study, our findings support that various setups might influence the radiopacity of dental materials on digital radiographs.

  19. Enhancing evidence-based diabetes and chronic disease control among local health departments: a multi-phase dissemination study with a stepped-wedge cluster randomized trial component.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parks, Renee G; Tabak, Rachel G; Allen, Peg; Baker, Elizabeth A; Stamatakis, Katherine A; Poehler, Allison R; Yan, Yan; Chin, Marshall H; Harris, Jenine K; Dobbins, Maureen; Brownson, Ross C

    2017-10-18

    The rates of diabetes and prediabetes in the USA are growing, significantly impacting the quality and length of life of those diagnosed and financially burdening society. Premature death and disability can be prevented through implementation of evidence-based programs and policies (EBPPs). Local health departments (LHDs) are uniquely positioned to implement diabetes control EBPPs because of their knowledge of, and focus on, community-level needs, contexts, and resources. There is a significant gap, however, between known diabetes control EBPPs and actual diabetes control activities conducted by LHDs. The purpose of this study is to determine how best to support the use of evidence-based public health for diabetes (and related chronic diseases) control among local-level public health practitioners. This paper describes the methods for a two-phase study with a stepped-wedge cluster randomized trial that will evaluate dissemination strategies to increase the uptake of public health knowledge and EBPPs for diabetes control among LHDs. Phase 1 includes development of measures to assess practitioner views on and organizational supports for evidence-based public health, data collection using a national online survey of LHD chronic disease practitioners, and a needs assessment of factors influencing the uptake of diabetes control EBPPs among LHDs within one state in the USA. Phase 2 involves conducting a stepped-wedge cluster randomized trial to assess effectiveness of dissemination strategies with local-level practitioners at LHDs to enhance capacity and organizational support for evidence-based diabetes prevention and control. Twelve LHDs will be selected and randomly assigned to one of the three groups that cross over from usual practice to receive the intervention (dissemination) strategies at 8-month intervals; the intervention duration for groups ranges from 8 to 24 months. Intervention (dissemination) strategies may include multi-day in-person workshops, electronic

  20. Prevention of low back pain and its consequences among nurses’ aides in elderly care: a stepped-wedge multi-faceted cluster-randomized controlled trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    Background A high prevalence of low back pain has persisted over the years despite extensive primary prevention initiatives among nurses’ aides. Many single-faceted interventions addressing just one aspect of low back pain have been carried out at workplaces, but with low success rate. This may be due to the multi-factorial origin of low back pain. Participatory ergonomics, cognitive behavioral training and physical training have previously shown promising effects on prevention and rehabilitation of low back pain. Therefore, the main aim of this study is to examine whether a multi-faceted workplace intervention consisting of participatory ergonomics, physical training and cognitive behavioral training can prevent low back pain and its consequences among nurses’ aides. External resources for the participating workplace and a strong commitment from the management and the organization support the intervention. Methods/design To overcome implementation barriers within usual randomized controlled trial designed workplace interventions, this study uses a stepped-wedge cluster-randomized controlled trial design with 4 groups. The intervention is delivered to the groups at random along four successive time periods three months apart. The intervention lasts three months and integrates participatory ergonomics, physical training and cognitive behavioral training tailored to the target group. Local physiotherapists and occupational therapists conduct the intervention after having received standardized training. Primary outcomes are low back pain and its consequences measured monthly by text messages up to three months after initiation of the intervention. Discussion Intervention effectiveness trials for preventing low back pain and its consequences in workplaces with physically demanding work are few, primarily single-faceted, with strict adherence to a traditional randomized controlled trial design that may hamper implementation and compliance, and have mostly been

  1. Improving oxygen therapy for children and neonates in secondary hospitals in Nigeria: study protocol for a stepped-wedge cluster randomised trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graham, Hamish R; Ayede, Adejumoke I; Bakare, Ayobami A; Oyewole, Oladapo B; Peel, David; Gray, Amy; McPake, Barbara; Neal, Eleanor; Qazi, Shamim; Izadnegahdar, Rasa; Falade, Adegoke G; Duke, Trevor

    2017-10-27

    Oxygen is a life-saving, essential medicine that is important for the treatment of many common childhood conditions. Improved oxygen systems can reduce childhood pneumonia mortality substantially. However, providing oxygen to children is challenging, especially in small hospitals with weak infrastructure and low human resource capacity. This trial will evaluate the implementation of improved oxygen systems at secondary-level hospitals in southwest Nigeria. The improved oxygen system includes: a standardised equipment package; training of clinical and technical staff; infrastructure support (including improved power supply); and quality improvement activities such as supportive supervision. Phase 1 will involve the introduction of pulse oximetry alone; phase 2 will involve the introduction of the full, improved oxygen system package. We have based the intervention design on a theory-based analysis of previous oxygen projects, and used quality improvement principles, evidence-based teaching methods, and behaviour-change strategies. We are using a stepped-wedge cluster randomised design with participating hospitals randomised to receive an improved oxygen system at 4-month steps (three hospitals per step). Our mixed-methods evaluation will evaluate effectiveness, impact, sustainability, process and fidelity. Our primary outcome measures are childhood pneumonia case fatality rate and inpatient neonatal mortality rate. Secondary outcome measures include a range of clinical, quality of care, technical, and health systems outcomes. The planned study duration is from 2015 to 2018. Our study will provide quality evidence on the effectiveness of improved oxygen systems, and how to better implement and scale-up oxygen systems in resource-limited settings. Our results should have important implications for policy-makers, hospital administrators, and child health organisations in Africa and globally. Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry: ACTRN12617000341325

  2. Supporting shared decision making using an Option Grid for osteoarthritis of the knee in an interface musculoskeletal clinic: A stepped wedge trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elwyn, Glyn; Pickles, Tim; Edwards, Adrian; Kinsey, Katharine; Brain, Kate; Newcombe, Robert G; Firth, Jill; Marrin, Katy; Nye, Alan; Wood, Fiona

    2016-04-01

    To evaluate whether introducing tools, specifically designed for use in clinical encounters, namely Option Grids, into a clinical practice setting leads to higher levels of shared decision making. A stepped wedge trial design where 6 physiotherapists at an interface clinic in Oldham, UK, were sequentially instructed in how to use an Option Grid for osteoarthritis of the knee. Patients with suspected or confirmed osteoarthritis of the knee were recruited, six per clinician prior to instruction, and six per clinician afterwards. We measured shared decision making, patient knowledge, and readiness to decide. A total of 72 patients were recruited; 36 were allocated to the intervention group. There was an 8.4 point (95% CI 4.4 to 12.2) increase in the Observer OPTION score (range 0-100) in the intervention group. The mean gain in knowledge was 0.9 points (score range 0-5, 95% CI, 0.3 to 1.5). There was no increase in encounter duration. Shared decision making increased when clinicians used the knee osteoarthritis Option Grid. Tools designed to support collaboration and deliberation about treatment options lead to increased levels of shared decision making. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  3. The Feedback Intervention Trial (FIT) — Improving Hand-Hygiene Compliance in UK Healthcare Workers: A Stepped Wedge Cluster Randomised Controlled Trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuller, Christopher; Michie, Susan; Savage, Joanne; McAteer, John; Besser, Sarah; Charlett, Andre; Hayward, Andrew; Cookson, Barry D.; Cooper, Ben S.; Duckworth, Georgia; Jeanes, Annette; Roberts, Jenny; Teare, Louise; Stone, Sheldon

    2012-01-01

    Introduction Achieving a sustained improvement in hand-hygiene compliance is the WHO’s first global patient safety challenge. There is no RCT evidence showing how to do this. Systematic reviews suggest feedback is most effective and call for long term well designed RCTs, applying behavioural theory to intervention design to optimise effectiveness. Methods Three year stepped wedge cluster RCT of a feedback intervention testing hypothesis that the intervention was more effective than routine practice in 16 English/Welsh Hospitals (16 Intensive Therapy Units [ITU]; 44 Acute Care of the Elderly [ACE] wards) routinely implementing a national cleanyourhands campaign). Intervention-based on Goal & Control theories. Repeating 4 week cycle (20 mins/week) of observation, feedback and personalised action planning, recorded on forms. Computer-generated stepwise entry of all hospitals to intervention. Hospitals aware only of own allocation. Primary outcome: direct blinded hand hygiene compliance (%). Results All 16 trusts (60 wards) randomised, 33 wards implemented intervention (11 ITU, 22 ACE). Mixed effects regression analysis (all wards) accounting for confounders, temporal trends, ward type and fidelity to intervention (forms/month used). Intention to Treat Analysis Estimated odds ratio (OR) for hand hygiene compliance rose post randomisation (1.44; 95% CI 1.18, 1.76;phand-hygiene compliance, in wards implementing a national hand-hygiene campaign. Further implementation studies are needed to maximise the intervention’s effect in different settings. Trial Registration Controlled-Trials.com ISRCTN65246961 PMID:23110040

  4. A stepped wedge, cluster-randomized trial of a household UV-disinfection and safe storage drinking water intervention in rural Baja California Sur, Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gruber, Joshua S; Reygadas, Fermin; Arnold, Benjamin F; Ray, Isha; Nelson, Kara; Colford, John M

    2013-08-01

    In collaboration with a local non-profit organization, this study evaluated the expansion of a program that promoted and installed Mesita Azul, an ultraviolet-disinfection system designed to treat household drinking water in rural Mexico. We conducted a 15-month, cluster-randomized stepped wedge trial by randomizing the order in which 24 communities (444 households) received the intervention. We measured primary outcomes (water contamination and diarrhea) during seven household visits. The intervention increased the percentage of households with access to treated and safely stored drinking water (23-62%), and reduced the percentage of households with Escherichia coli contaminated drinking water (risk difference (RD): -19% [95% CI: -27%, -14%]). No significant reduction in diarrhea was observed (RD: -0.1% [95% CI: -1.1%, 0.9%]). We conclude that household water quality improvements measured in this study justify future promotion of the Mesita Azul, and that future studies to measure its health impact would be valuable if conducted in populations with higher diarrhea prevalence.

  5. Rethinking wedges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Steven J.; Cao, Long; Caldeira, Ken; Hoffert, Martin I.

    2013-03-01

    Abstract Stabilizing CO2 emissions at current levels for fifty years is not consistent with either an atmospheric CO2 concentration below 500 ppm or global temperature increases below 2 °C. Accepting these targets, solving the climate problem requires that emissions peak and decline in the next few decades, and ultimately fall to near zero. Phasing out emissions over 50 years could be achieved by deploying on the order of 19 'wedges', each of which ramps up linearly over a period of 50 years to ultimately avoid 1 GtC y-1 of CO2 emissions. But this level of mitigation will require affordable carbon-free energy systems to be deployed at the scale of tens of terawatts. Any hope for such fundamental and disruptive transformation of the global energy system depends upon coordinated efforts to innovate, plan, and deploy new transportation and energy systems that can provide affordable energy at this scale without emitting CO2 to the atmosphere. 1. Introduction In 2004, Pacala and Socolow published a study in Science arguing that '[h]umanity can solve the carbon and climate problem in the first half of this century simply by scaling up what we already know how to do' [1]. Specifically, they presented 15 options for 'stabilization wedges' that would grow linearly from zero to 1 Gt of carbon emissions avoided per year (GtC y-1 1 Gt = 1012 kg) over 50 years. The solution to the carbon and climate problem, they asserted, was 'to deploy the technologies and/or lifestyle changes necessary to fill all seven wedges of the stabilization triangle'. They claimed this would offset the growth of emissions and put us on a trajectory to stabilize atmospheric CO2 concentration at 500 ppm if emissions decreased sharply in the second half of the 21st century. The wedge concept has proven popular as an analytical tool for considering the potential of different technologies to reduce CO2 emissions. In the years since the paper was published, it has been cited more than 400 times, and

  6. Radial wedge flange clamp

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Karl H.

    2002-01-01

    A radial wedge flange clamp comprising a pair of flanges each comprising a plurality of peripheral flat wedge facets having flat wedge surfaces and opposed and mating flat surfaces attached to or otherwise engaged with two elements to be joined and including a series of generally U-shaped wedge clamps each having flat wedge interior surfaces and engaging one pair of said peripheral flat wedge facets. Each of said generally U-shaped wedge clamps has in its opposing extremities apertures for the tangential insertion of bolts to apply uniform radial force to said wedge clamps when assembled about said wedge segments.

  7. Reducing Medical Admissions into Hospital through Optimising Medicines (REMAIN HOME) Study: protocol for a stepped-wedge, cluster-randomised trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foot, Holly; Freeman, Christopher; Hemming, Karla; Scott, Ian; Coombes, Ian D; Williams, Ian D; Connelly, Luke; Whitty, Jennifer A; Sturman, Nancy; Kirsa, Sue; Nicholson, Caroline; Russell, Grant; Kirkpatrick, Carl; Cottrell, Neil

    2017-01-01

    Introduction A model of general practitioner (GP) and pharmacist collaboration in primary care may be an effective strategy to reduce medication-related problems and provide better support to patients after discharge. The aim of this study is to investigate whether a model of structured pharmacist and GP care reduces hospital readmissions in high-risk patients. Methods and analysis This protocol details a stepped-wedge, cluster-randomised trial that will recruit participants over 9 months with a 12-month follow-up. There will be 14 clusters each representing a different general practice medical centre. A total of 2240 participants will be recruited from hospital who attend an enrolled medical centre, take five or more long-term medicines or whose reason for admission was related to heart failure or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. The intervention is a multifaceted service, involving a pharmacist integrated into a medical centre to assist patients after hospitalisation. Participants will meet with the practice pharmacist and their GP after discharge to review and reconcile their medicines and discuss changes made in hospital. The pharmacist will follow-up with the participant and liaise with other health professionals involved in the participant’s care. The control will be usual care, which usually involves a patient self-organising a visit to their GP after hospital discharge. The primary outcome is the rate of unplanned, all-cause hospital readmissions over 12 months, which will be analysed using a mixed effects Poisson regression model with a random effect for cluster and a fixed effect to account for any temporal trend. A cost analysis will be undertaken to compare the healthcare costs associated with the intervention to those of usual care. Ethics and dissemination The study has received ethical approval (HREC/16/QRBW/410). The study findings will be disseminated through peer-reviewed publications, conferences and reports to key stakeholders. Trial

  8. Group based prenatal care in a low-and high risk population in the Netherlands: a study protocol for a stepped wedge cluster randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Zwicht, Birgit S; Crone, Matty R; van Lith, Jan M M; Rijnders, Marlies E B

    2016-11-15

    CenteringPregnancy (CP) is a multifaceted group based care-model integrated in routine prenatal care, combining health assessment, education, and support. CP has shown some positive results on perinatal outcomes. However, the effects are less obvious when limited to the results of randomized controlled trials: as there are few trials and there is a variation in reported outcomes. Furthermore, former research was mostly conducted in the United States of America and in specific (often high risk) populations. Our study aims to evaluate the effects of CP in the Netherlands in a general population of pregnant women (low and high risk). Furthermore we aim to explore the mechanisms leading to the eventual effects by measuring potential mediating factors. We will perform a stepped wedge cluster randomized controlled trial, in a Western region in the Netherlands. Inclusion criteria are care, women in the intervention period (starting at the randomized time-point) will be offered the choice between individual care or CP. Primary outcomes are maternal and neonatal morbidity, retrieved from a national routine database. Secondary outcomes are health behavior, psychosocial outcomes, satisfaction, health care utilization and process outcomes, collected through self-administered questionnaires, group-evaluations and individual interviews. We will conduct intention-to-treat analyses. Also a per protocol analysis will be performed comparing the three subgroups: control group, CP-participants and non-CP-participants, using multilevel techniques to account for clustering effects. This study contributes to the evidence regarding the effect of CP and gives a first indication of the effect and implementation of CP in both low and high-risk pregnancies in a high-income Western society other than the USA. Also, measuring factors that are hypothesized to mediate the effect of CP will enable to explain the mechanisms that lead to effects on maternal and neonatal outcomes. Dutch Trial

  9. Can an e-learning course improve nursing care for older people at risk of delirium: a stepped wedge cluster randomised trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van de Steeg, Lotte; IJkema, Roelie; Langelaan, Maaike; Wagner, Cordula

    2014-05-27

    Delirium occurs frequently in older hospitalised patients and is associated with several adverse outcomes. Ignorance among healthcare professionals and a failure to recognise patients suffering from delirium have been identified as the possible causes of poor care. The objective of the study was to determine whether e-learning can be an effective means of improving implementation of a quality improvement project in delirium care. This project aims primarily at improving the early recognition of older patients who are at risk of delirium. In a stepped wedge cluster randomised trial an e-learning course on delirium was introduced, aimed at nursing staff. The trial was conducted on general medical and surgical wards from 18 Dutch hospitals. The primary outcome measure was the delirium risk screening conducted by nursing staff, measured through monthly patient record reviews. Patient records from patients aged 70 and over admitted onto wards participating in the study were used for data collection. Data was also collected on the level of delirium knowledge of these wards' nursing staff. Records from 1,862 older patients were included during the control phase and from 1,411 patients during the intervention phase. The e-learning course on delirium had a significant positive effect on the risk screening of older patients by nursing staff (OR 1.8, p-value e-learning course also showed a significant positive effect on nurses' knowledge of delirium. Nurses who undertook a delirium e-learning course showed a greater adherence to the quality improvement project in delirium care. This improved the recognition of patients at risk and demonstrated that e-learning can be a valuable instrument for hospitals when implementing improvements in delirium care. The Netherlands National Trial Register (NTR). NTR2885.

  10. A police education programme to integrate occupational safety and HIV prevention: protocol for a modified stepped-wedge study design with parallel prospective cohorts to assess behavioural outcomes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strathdee, Steffanie A; Arredondo, Jaime; Rocha, Teresita; Abramovitz, Daniela; Rolon, Maria Luisa; Patiño Mandujano, Efrain; Rangel, Maria Gudelia; Olivarria, Horcasitas Omar; Gaines, Tommi; Patterson, Thomas L; Beletsky, Leo

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Policing practices are key drivers of HIV among people who inject drugs (PWID). This paper describes the protocol for the first study to prospectively examine the impact of a police education programme (PEP) to align law enforcement and HIV prevention. PEPs incorporating HIV prevention (including harm reduction programmes like syringe exchange) have been successfully piloted in several countries but were limited to brief pre–post assessments; the impact of PEPs on policing behaviours and occupational safety is unknown. Objectives Proyecto ESCUDO (SHIELD) aims to evaluate the efficacy of the PEP on uptake of occupational safety procedures, as assessed through the incidence of needle stick injuries (NSIs) (primary outcome) and changes in knowledge of transmission, prevention and treatment of HIV and viral hepatitis; attitudes towards PWID, adverse behaviours that interfere with HIV prevention and protective behaviours (secondary outcomes). Methods/analysis ESCUDO is a hybrid type I design that simultaneously tests an intervention and an implementation strategy. Using a modified stepped-wedge design involving all active duty street-level police officers in Tijuana (N=∼1200), we will administer one 3 h PEP course to groups of 20–50 officers until the entire force is trained. NSI incidence and geocoded arrest data will be assessed from department-wide de-identified data. Of the consenting police officers, a subcohort (N=500) will be randomly sampled from each class to undergo pre-PEP and post-PEP surveys with a semiannual follow-up for 2 years to assess self-reported NSIs, attitudes and behaviour changes. The impact on PWIDs will be externally validated through a parallel cohort of Tijuana PWIDs. Ethics/dissemination Research ethics approval was obtained from the USA and Mexico. Findings will be disseminated through open access to protocol materials through the Law Enforcement and HIV Network. Trial registration number NCT02444403. PMID:26260350

  11. The longitudinal prevalence of MRSA in care home residents and the effectiveness of improving infection prevention knowledge and practice on colonisation using a stepped wedge study design

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horner, C; Barr, B; Hall, D; Hodgson, G; Parnell, P; Tompkins, D

    2012-01-01

    Objectives To determine the prevalence and health outcomes of meticillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) colonisation in elderly care home residents. To measure the effectiveness of improving infection prevention knowledge and practice on MRSA prevalence. Setting Care homes for elderly residents in Leeds, UK. Participants Residents able to give informed consent. Design A controlled intervention study, using a stepped wedge design, comprising 65 homes divided into three groups. Baseline MRSA prevalence was determined by screening the nares of residents (n=2492). An intervention based upon staff education and training on hand hygiene was delivered at three different times according to group number. Scores for three assessment methods, an audit of hand hygiene facilities, staff hand hygiene observations and an educational questionnaire, were collected before and after the intervention. After each group of homes received the intervention, all participants were screened for MRSA nasal colonisation. In total, four surveys took place between November 2006 and February 2009. Results MRSA prevalence was 20%, 19%, 22% and 21% in each survey, respectively. There was a significant improvement in scores for all three assessment methods post-intervention (p≤0.001). The intervention was associated with a small but significant increase in MRSA prevalence (p=0.023). MRSA colonisation was associated with previous and subsequent MRSA infection but was not significantly associated with subsequent hospitalisation or mortality. Conclusions The intervention did not result in a decrease in the prevalence of MRSA colonisation in care home residents. Additional measures will be required to reduce endemic MRSA colonisation in care homes. PMID:22240647

  12. An imbalance in cluster sizes does not lead to notable loss of power in cross-sectional, stepped-wedge cluster randomised trials with a continuous outcome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kristunas, Caroline A; Smith, Karen L; Gray, Laura J

    2017-03-07

    The current methodology for sample size calculations for stepped-wedge cluster randomised trials (SW-CRTs) is based on the assumption of equal cluster sizes. However, as is often the case in cluster randomised trials (CRTs), the clusters in SW-CRTs are likely to vary in size, which in other designs of CRT leads to a reduction in power. The effect of an imbalance in cluster size on the power of SW-CRTs has not previously been reported, nor what an appropriate adjustment to the sample size calculation should be to allow for any imbalance. We aimed to assess the impact of an imbalance in cluster size on the power of a cross-sectional SW-CRT and recommend a method for calculating the sample size of a SW-CRT when there is an imbalance in cluster size. The effect of varying degrees of imbalance in cluster size on the power of SW-CRTs was investigated using simulations. The sample size was calculated using both the standard method and two proposed adjusted design effects (DEs), based on those suggested for CRTs with unequal cluster sizes. The data were analysed using generalised estimating equations with an exchangeable correlation matrix and robust standard errors. An imbalance in cluster size was not found to have a notable effect on the power of SW-CRTs. The two proposed adjusted DEs resulted in trials that were generally considerably over-powered. We recommend that the standard method of sample size calculation for SW-CRTs be used, provided that the assumptions of the method hold. However, it would be beneficial to investigate, through simulation, what effect the maximum likely amount of inequality in cluster sizes would be on the power of the trial and whether any inflation of the sample size would be required.

  13. Cognitive stimulation therapy as a sustainable intervention for dementia in sub-Saharan Africa: feasibility and clinical efficacy using a stepped-wedge design.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paddick, Stella-Maria; Mkenda, Sarah; Mbowe, Godfrey; Kisoli, Aloyce; Gray, William K; Dotchin, Catherine L; Ternent, Laura; Ogunniyi, Adesola; Kissima, John; Olakehinde, Olaide; Mushi, Declare; Walker, Richard W

    2017-06-01

    Cognitive stimulation therapy (CST) is a psychosocial group-based intervention for dementia shown to improve cognition and quality of life with a similar efficacy to cholinesterase inhibitors. Since CST can be delivered by non-specialist healthcare workers, it has potential for use in low-resource environments, such as sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). We aimed to assess the feasibility and clinical effectiveness of CST in rural Tanzania using a stepped-wedge design. Participants and their carers were recruited through a community dementia screening program. Inclusion criteria were DSM-IV diagnosis of dementia of mild/moderate severity following detailed assessment. No participant had a previous diagnosis of dementia and none were taking a cholinesterase inhibitor. Primary outcomes related to the feasibility of conducting CST in this setting. Key clinical outcomes were changes in quality of life and cognition. The assessing team was blind to treatment group membership. Thirty four participants with mild/moderate dementia were allocated to four CST groups. Attendance rates were high (85%) and we were able to complete all 14 sessions for each group within the seven week timeframe. Substantial improvements in cognition, anxiety, and behavioral symptoms were noted following CST, with smaller improvements in quality of life measures. The number needed to treat was two for a four-point cognitive (adapted Alzheimer's Disease Assessment Scale-Cognitive) improvement. This intervention has the potential to be low-cost, sustainable, and adaptable to other settings across SSA, particularly if it can be delivered by non-specialist health workers.

  14. Implementation of immunochemical faecal occult blood test in general practice: a study protocol using a cluster-randomised stepped-wedge design.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juul, Jakob Søgaard; Bro, Flemming; Hornung, Nete; Andersen, Berit Sanne; Laurberg, Søren; Olesen, Frede; Vedsted, Peter

    2016-07-11

    Colorectal cancer is a common malignancy and a leading cause of cancer-related death. Half of patients with colorectal cancer initially present with non-specific or vague symptoms. In the need for a safe low-cost test, the immunochemical faecal occult blood test (iFOBT) may be part of the evaluation of such patients in primary care. Currently, Danish general practitioners have limited access to this test. The aim of this article is to describe a study that will assess the uptake and clinical use of iFOBT in general practice. Furthermore, it will investigate the diagnostic value and the clinical implications of using iFOBT in general practice on patients presenting with non-alarm symptoms of colorectal cancer. The study uses a cluster-randomised stepped-wedge design and is conducted in the Central Denmark Region among 836 GPs in 381 general practices. The municipalities of the Region and their appertaining general practitioners will be included sequentially in the study during the first 7 months of the 1-year study period. The following intervention has been developed for the study: a mandatory intervention providing all general practitioners with a starting package of 10 iFOBTs, a clinical instruction on iFOBT use in general practice and online information material from the date of inclusion, and an optional intervention consisting of a continuous medical education on colorectal cancer diagnostics and use of iFOBT. This study is among the first and largest trials to investigate the diagnostic use and the clinical value of iFOBT on patients presenting with non-alarm symptoms of colorectal cancer. The findings will be of national and international importance for the future planning of colorectal cancer diagnostics, particularly for 'low-risk-but-not-no-risk' patients with non-alarm symptoms of colorectal cancer. A Trial of the Implementation of iFOBT in General Practice NCT02308384 . Date of registration: 26 November 2014.

  15. Effectiveness of a Geriatric Care Model for frail older adults in primary care: Results from a stepped wedge cluster randomized trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoogendijk, Emiel O; van der Horst, Henriëtte E; van de Ven, Peter M; Twisk, Jos W R; Deeg, Dorly J H; Frijters, Dinnus H M; van Leeuwen, Karen M; van Campen, Jos P C M; Nijpels, Giel; Jansen, Aaltje P D; van Hout, Hein P J

    2016-03-01

    Primary care-based comprehensive care programs have the potential to improve outcomes in frail older adults. We evaluated the impact of the Geriatric Care Model (GCM) on the quality of life of community-dwelling frail older adults. A 24-month stepped wedge cluster randomized controlled trial was conducted between May 2010 and March 2013 in 35 primary care practices in the Netherlands, and included 1147 frail older adults. The intervention consisted of a geriatric in-home assessment by a practice nurse, followed by a tailored care plan. Reassessment occurred every six months. Nurses worked together with primary care physicians and were supervised and trained by geriatric expert teams. Complex patients were reviewed in multidisciplinary consultations. The primary outcome was quality of life (SF-12). Secondary outcomes were health-related quality of life, functional limitations, self-rated health, psychological wellbeing, social functioning and hospitalizations. Intention-to-treat analyses based on multilevel modeling showed no significant differences between the intervention group and usual care regarding SF-12 and most secondary outcomes. Only for IADL limitations we found a small intervention effect in patients who received the intervention for 18months (B=-0.25, 95%CI=-0.43 to -0.06, p=0.007), but this effect was not statistically significant after correction for multiple comparisons. The GCM did not show beneficial effects on quality of life in frail older adults in primary care, compared to usual care. This study strengthens the idea that comprehensive care programs add very little to usual primary care for this population. The Netherlands National Trial Register NTR2160. Copyright © 2015 European Federation of Internal Medicine. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Can an e-learning course improve nursing care for older people at risk of delirium: a stepped wedge cluster randomised trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-01-01

    Background Delirium occurs frequently in older hospitalised patients and is associated with several adverse outcomes. Ignorance among healthcare professionals and a failure to recognise patients suffering from delirium have been identified as the possible causes of poor care. The objective of the study was to determine whether e-learning can be an effective means of improving implementation of a quality improvement project in delirium care. This project aims primarily at improving the early recognition of older patients who are at risk of delirium. Methods In a stepped wedge cluster randomised trial an e-learning course on delirium was introduced, aimed at nursing staff. The trial was conducted on general medical and surgical wards from 18 Dutch hospitals. The primary outcome measure was the delirium risk screening conducted by nursing staff, measured through monthly patient record reviews. Patient records from patients aged 70 and over admitted onto wards participating in the study were used for data collection. Data was also collected on the level of delirium knowledge of these wards’ nursing staff. Results Records from 1,862 older patients were included during the control phase and from 1,411 patients during the intervention phase. The e-learning course on delirium had a significant positive effect on the risk screening of older patients by nursing staff (OR 1.8, p-value e-learning course also showed a significant positive effect on nurses’ knowledge of delirium. Conclusions Nurses who undertook a delirium e-learning course showed a greater adherence to the quality improvement project in delirium care. This improved the recognition of patients at risk and demonstrated that e-learning can be a valuable instrument for hospitals when implementing improvements in delirium care. Trial registration The Netherlands National Trial Register (NTR). Trial number: NTR2885. PMID:24884739

  17. Enhancing system-wide implementation of opioid prescribing guidelines in primary care: protocol for a stepped-wedge quality improvement project.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zgierska, Aleksandra E; Vidaver, Regina M; Smith, Paul; Ales, Mary W; Nisbet, Kate; Boss, Deanne; Tuan, Wen-Jan; Hahn, David L

    2018-06-05

    Systematic implementation of guidelines for opioid therapy management in chronic non-cancer pain can reduce opioid-related harms. However, implementation of guideline-recommended practices in routine care is subpar. The goal of this quality improvement (QI) project is to assess whether a clinic-tailored QI intervention improves the implementation of a health system-wide, guideline-driven policy on opioid prescribing in primary care. This manuscript describes the protocol for this QI project. A health system with 28 primary care clinics caring for approximately 294,000 primary care patients developed and implemented a guideline-driven policy on long-term opioid therapy in adults with opioid-treated chronic non-cancer pain (estimated N = 3980). The policy provided multiple recommendations, including the universal use of treatment agreements, urine drug testing, depression and opioid misuse risk screening, and standardized documentation of the chronic pain diagnosis and treatment plan. The project team drew upon existing guidelines, feedback from end-users, experts and health system leadership to develop a robust QI intervention, targeting clinic-level implementation of policy-directed practices. The resulting multi-pronged QI intervention included clinic-wide and individual clinician-level educational interventions. The QI intervention will augment the health system's "routine rollout" method, consisting of a single educational presentation to clinicians in group settings and a separate presentation for staff. A stepped-wedge design will enable 9 primary care clinics to receive the intervention and assessment of within-clinic and between-clinic changes in adherence to the policy items measured by clinic-level electronic health record-based measures and process measures of the experience with the intervention. Developing methods for a health system-tailored QI intervention required a multi-step process to incorporate end-user feedback and account for the needs of

  18. Silicon micromachined vibrating gyroscopes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Voss, Ralf

    1997-09-01

    This work gives an overview of silicon micromachined vibrating gyroscopes. Market perspectives and fields of application are pointed out. The advantage of using silicon micromachining is discussed and estimations of the desired performance, especially for automobiles are given. The general principle of vibrating gyroscopes is explained. Vibrating silicon gyroscopes can be divided into seven classes. for each class the characteristic principle is presented and examples are given. Finally a specific sensor, based on a tuning fork for automotive applications with a sensitivity of 250(mu) V/degrees is described in detail.

  19. Application of a nonrandomized stepped wedge design to evaluate an evidence-based quality improvement intervention: a proof of concept using simulated data on patient-centered medical homes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huynh, Alexis K; Lee, Martin L; Farmer, Melissa M; Rubenstein, Lisa V

    2016-10-21

    Stepped wedge designs have gained recognition as a method for rigorously assessing implementation of evidence-based quality improvement interventions (QIIs) across multiple healthcare sites. In theory, this design uses random assignment of sites to successive QII implementation start dates based on a timeline determined by evaluators. However, in practice, QII timing is often controlled more by site readiness. We propose an alternate version of the stepped wedge design that does not assume the randomized timing of implementation while retaining the method's analytic advantages and applying to a broader set of evaluations. To test the feasibility of a nonrandomized stepped wedge design, we developed simulated data on patient care experiences and on QII implementation that had the structures and features of the expected data from a planned QII. We then applied the design in anticipation of performing an actual QII evaluation. We used simulated data on 108,000 patients to model nonrandomized stepped wedge results from QII implementation across nine primary care sites over 12 quarters. The outcome we simulated was change in a single self-administered question on access to care used by Veterans Health Administration (VA), based in the United States, as part of its quarterly patient ratings of quality of care. Our main predictors were QII exposure and time. Based on study hypotheses, we assigned values of 4 to 11 % for improvement in access when sites were first exposed to implementation and 1 to 3 % improvement in each ensuing time period thereafter when sites continued with implementation. We included site-level (practice size) and respondent-level (gender, race/ethnicity) characteristics that might account for nonrandomized timing in site implementation of the QII. We analyzed the resulting data as a repeated cross-sectional model using HLM 7 with a three-level hierarchical data structure and an ordinal outcome. Levels in the data structure included patient ratings

  20. Researching effective approaches to cleaning in hospitals: protocol of the REACH study, a multi-site stepped-wedge randomised trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, Lisa; Farrington, Alison; Mitchell, Brett G; Barnett, Adrian G; Halton, Kate; Allen, Michelle; Page, Katie; Gardner, Anne; Havers, Sally; Bailey, Emily; Dancer, Stephanie J; Riley, Thomas V; Gericke, Christian A; Paterson, David L; Graves, Nicholas

    2016-03-24

    The Researching Effective Approaches to Cleaning in Hospitals (REACH) study will generate evidence about the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of a novel cleaning initiative that aims to improve the environmental cleanliness of hospitals. The initiative is an environmental cleaning bundle, with five interdependent, evidence-based components (training, technique, product, audit and communication) implemented with environmental services staff to enhance hospital cleaning practices. The REACH study will use a stepped-wedge randomised controlled design to test the study intervention, an environmental cleaning bundle, in 11 Australian hospitals. All trial hospitals will receive the intervention and act as their own control, with analysis undertaken of the change within each hospital based on data collected in the control and intervention periods. Each site will be randomised to one of the 11 intervention timings with staggered commencement dates in 2016 and an intervention period between 20 and 50 weeks. All sites complete the trial at the same time in 2017. The inclusion criteria allow for a purposive sample of both public and private hospitals that have higher-risk patient populations for healthcare-associated infections (HAIs). The primary outcome (objective one) is the monthly number of Staphylococcus aureus bacteraemias (SABs), Clostridium difficile infections (CDIs) and vancomycin resistant enterococci (VRE) infections, per 10,000 bed days. Secondary outcomes for objective one include the thoroughness of hospital cleaning assessed using fluorescent marker technology, the bio-burden of frequent touch surfaces post cleaning and changes in staff knowledge and attitudes about environmental cleaning. A cost-effectiveness analysis will determine the second key outcome (objective two): the incremental cost-effectiveness ratio from implementation of the cleaning bundle. The study uses the integrated Promoting Action on Research Implementation in Health Services (i

  1. Cost-effectiveness of a multifaceted implementation strategy for the Dutch multidisciplinary guideline for nonspecific low back pain: design of a stepped-wedge cluster randomised controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suman, Arnela; Schaafsma, Frederieke G; Elders, Petra J M; van Tulder, Maurits W; Anema, Johannes R

    2015-05-31

    Low back pain (LBP) is one of the most prevalent and expensive health care problems in industrialised countries. LBP leads to high health care utility and productivity losses; leaving the individual, the employer, and society with substantial costs. To improve the care for LBP patients and reduce the high societal and financial burden of LBP, in 2010 the 'Multidisciplinary care guideline for nonspecific low back pain' was developed in the Netherlands. The current paper describes the design of a study aiming to evaluate the (cost-) effectiveness of a multifaceted strategy to implement this guideline. In a cluster-randomised controlled trial, the (cost-) effectiveness of a multifaceted implementation strategy will be compared to passive guideline dissemination. Using a stepped-wedge approach, participating general practitioners, physiotherapists, and occupational physicians are allocated into clusters and will attend a multidisciplinary continuing medical education training session. The timing these clusters receive the training is the unit of randomisation. LBP patients visiting the participating health care providers are invited to participate in the trial and will receive access to a multimedia intervention aimed at improving beliefs, cognitions, and self-management. The primary outcome measure of this study is patient back beliefs. Secondary outcome measures on patient level include pain, functional status, quality of life, health care utility, and productivity losses. Outcome measures on professional level include knowledge and attitude towards the guideline, and guideline adherence. A process evaluation for the implementation strategy will be performed among the health care providers and the patients. Furthermore, a qualitative subgroup analysis among patients with various ethnic backgrounds will be performed. This study will give insight into the (cost-) effectiveness of a multifaceted implementation strategy for the Dutch multidisciplinary guideline for non

  2. The effect of a complementary e-learning course on implementation of a quality improvement project regarding care for elderly patients: a stepped wedge trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van de Steeg, Lotte; Langelaan, Maaike; Ijkema, Roelie; Wagner, Cordula

    2012-03-02

    Delirium occurs frequently in elderly hospitalised patients and is associated with higher mortality, increased length of hospital stay, functional decline, and admission to long-term care. Healthcare professionals frequently do not recognise delirium, indicating that education can play an important role in improving delirium care for hospitalised elderly. Previous studies have indicated that e-learning can provide an effective way of educating healthcare professionals and improving quality of care, though results are inconsistent. This stepped wedge cluster randomised trial will assess the effects of a complementary delirium e-learning course on the implementation of quality improvement initiative, which aims to enhance the recognition and management of delirium in elderly patients. The trial will be conducted in 18 Dutch hospitals and last 11 months. Measurements will be taken in all participating wards using monthly record reviews, in order to monitor delivered care. These measurements will include the percentage of elderly patients who were screened for the risk of developing delirium, use of the Delirium Observation Screening scale, use of nursing or medical interventions, and the percentage of elderly patients who were diagnosed with delirium. Data regarding the e-learning course will be gathered as well. These data will include user characteristics, information regarding use of the course, delirium knowledge before and after using the course, and the attitude and intentions of nurses concerning delirium care. The study will be conducted in internal medicine and surgical wards of eighteen hospitals that are at the beginning stages of implementing the Frail Elderly Project in the Netherlands. Better recognition of elderly patients at risk for delirium and subsequent care is expected from the introduction of an e-learning course for nurses that is complementary to an existing quality improvement project. This trial has the potential to demonstrate that e

  3. Cost-Effectiveness of a Chronic Care Model for Frail Older Adults in Primary Care: Economic Evaluation Alongside a Stepped-Wedge Cluster-Randomized Trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Leeuwen, Karen M; Bosmans, Judith E; Jansen, Aaltje P D; Hoogendijk, Emiel O; Muntinga, Maaike E; van Hout, Hein P J; Nijpels, Giel; van der Horst, Henriette E; van Tulder, Maurits W

    2015-12-01

    To evaluate the cost-effectiveness of the Geriatric Care Model (GCM), an integrated care model for frail older adults based on the Chronic Care Model, with that of usual care. Economic evaluation alongside a 24-month stepped-wedge cluster-randomized controlled trial. Primary care (35 practices) in two regions in the Netherlands. Community-dwelling older adults who were frail according to their primary care physicians and the Program on Research for Integrating Services for the Maintenance of Autonomy case-finding tool questionnaire (N = 1,147). The GCM consisted of the following components: a regularly scheduled in-home comprehensive geriatric assessment by a practice nurse followed by a customized care plan, management and training of practice nurses by a geriatric expert team, and coordination of care through community network meetings and multidisciplinary team consultations of individuals with complex care needs. Outcomes were measured every 6 months and included costs from a societal perspective, health-related quality of life (Medical Outcomes Study 12-item Short-Form Survey (SF-12) physical (PCS) and mental component summary (MCS) scales), functional limitations (Katz activities of daily living and instrumental activities of daily living), and quality-adjusted life years based on the EQ-5D. Multilevel regression models adjusted for time and baseline confounders showed no significant differences in costs ($356, 95% confidence interval = -$488-1,134) and outcomes between intervention and usual care phases. Cost-effectiveness acceptability curves showed that, for the SF-12 PCS and MCS, the probability of the intervention being cost-effective was 0.76 if decision-makers are willing to pay $30,000 per point improvement on the SF-12 scales (range 0-100). For all other outcomes the probability of the intervention being cost-effective was low. Because the GCM was not cost-effective compared to usual care after 24 months of follow-up, widespread implementation

  4. Sustained employability of workers in a production environment: design of a stepped wedge trial to evaluate effectiveness and cost-benefit of the POSE program

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    van Holland Berry J

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Sustained employability and health are generating awareness of employers in an aging and more complex work force. To meet these needs, employers may offer their employees health surveillance programs, to increase opportunities to work on health and sustained employability. However, evidence for these health surveillance programs is lacking. The FLESH study (Functional Labour Evaluation for Sustained Health and employment was developed to evaluate a comprehensive workers’ health promotion program on its effectiveness, cost-benefit, and process of the intervention. Methods The study is designed as a cluster randomised stepped wedge trial with randomisation at company plant level and is carried out in a large meat processing company. Every contracted employee is offered the opportunity to participate in the POSE program (Promotion Of Sustained Employability. The main goals of the POSE program are 1 providing employee’s insight into their current employability and health status, 2 offering opportunities to improve employability and decrease health risks and 3 improving employability and health sustainably in order to keep them healthy at work. The program consists of a broad assessment followed by a counselling session and, if needed, a tailored intervention. Measurements will be performed at baseline and will be followed up at 20, 40, 60, 80, 106 and 132 weeks. The primary outcome measures are work ability, productivity and absenteeism. Secondary outcomes include health status, vitality, and psychosocial workload. A cost-benefit study will be conducted from the employers’ perspective. A process evaluation will be conducted and the satisfaction of employer and employees with the program will be assessed. Discussion This study provides information on the effectiveness of the POSE program on sustained employment. When the program proves to be effective, employees benefit by improved work ability, and health. Employers benefit

  5. Enhancing Recruitment Using Teleconference and Commitment Contract (ERUTECC): study protocol for a randomised, stepped-wedge cluster trial within the EFFECTS trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lundström, Erik; Isaksson, Eva; Wester, Per; Laska, Ann-Charlotte; Näsman, Per

    2018-01-08

    Many randomised controlled trials (RCTs) fail to meet their recruitment goals in time. Trialists are advised to include study recruitment strategies within their trials. EFFECTS is a Swedish, academic-led RCT of fluoxetine for stroke recovery. The trial's primary objective is to investigate whether 20 mg fluoxetine daily compared with placebo for 6 months after an acute stroke improves the patient's functional outcome. The first patient was included on 20 October 2014 and, as of 31 August 2017, EFFECTS has included 810 of planned 1500 individuals. EFFECTS currently has 32 active centres. The primary objective of the ERUTECC (Enhancing Recruitment Using Teleconference and Commitment Contract) study is to investigate whether a structured teleconference re-visit with the study personnel at the centres, accompanied by a commitment contract, can enhance recruitment by 20% at 60 days post intervention, compared with 60 days pre-intervention, in an ongoing RCT. ERUTECC is a randomised, stepped-wedge cluster trial embedded in EFFECTS. The plan is to start ERUTECC with a running-in period of September 2017. The first intervention is due in October 2017, and the study will continue for 12 months. We are planning to intervene at all active centres in EFFECTS, except the five top recruiting centres (n = 27). The rationale for not intervening at the top recruiting centres is that we believe they have reached their full potential and the intervention would be too weak for them. The hypothesis of this study is that a structured teleconference re-visit with the study personnel at the centres, accompanied by a commitment contract, can enhance recruitment by 20% 60 days post intervention, compared to 60 days pre-intervention, in an ongoing RCT. EFFECTS is a large, pragmatic RCT of stroke in Sweden. Results from the embedded ERUTECC study could probably be generalised to high-income Western countries, and is relevant to trial management and could improve trial management in the

  6. Improving the implementation of perioperative safety guidelines using a multifaceted intervention approach: protocol of the IMPROVE study, a stepped wedge cluster randomized trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emond, Yvette E J J M; Calsbeek, Hiske; Teerenstra, Steven; Bloo, Gerrit J A; Westert, Gert P; Damen, Johan; Wolff, André P; Wollersheim, Hub C

    2015-01-08

    This study is initiated to evaluate the effects, costs, and feasibility at the hospital and patient level of an evidence-based strategy to improve the use of Dutch perioperative safety guidelines. Based on current knowledge, expert opinions and expertise of the project team, a multifaceted implementation strategy has been developed. This is a stepped wedge cluster randomized trial including nine representative hospitals across The Netherlands. Hospitals are stratified into three groups according to hospital type and geographical location and randomized in terms of the period for receipt of the intervention. All adult surgical patients meeting the inclusion criteria are assessed for patient outcomes. The implementation strategy includes education, audit and feedback, organizational interventions (e.g., local embedding of the guidelines), team-directed interventions (e.g., multi-professional team training), reminders, as well as patient-mediated interventions (e.g., patient safety cards). To tailor the implementation activities, we developed a questionnaire to identify barriers for effective guideline adherence, based on (a) a theoretical framework for classifying barriers and facilitators, (b) an instrument for measuring determinants of innovations, and (c) 19 semi-structured interviews with perioperative key professionals. Primary outcome is guideline adherence measured at the hospital (i.e., cluster) and patient levels by a set of perioperative Patient Safety Indicators (PSIs), which was developed parallel to the perioperative guidelines. Secondary outcomes at the patient level are in-hospital complications, postoperative wound infections and mortality, length of hospital stay, and unscheduled transfer to the intensive care unit, non-elective readmission to the hospital and unplanned reoperation, all within 30 days after the initial surgery. Also, patient safety culture and team climate will be studied as potential determinants. Finally, a process evaluation is

  7. Effect of a price discount and consumer education strategy on food and beverage purchases in remote Indigenous Australia: a stepped-wedge randomised controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brimblecombe, Julie; Ferguson, Megan; Chatfield, Mark D; Liberato, Selma C; Gunther, Anthony; Ball, Kylie; Moodie, Marj; Miles, Edward; Magnus, Anne; Mhurchu, Cliona Ni; Leach, Amanda Jane; Bailie, Ross

    2017-02-01

    Evidence is mounting that price discounts can be effective in improving diet. This study examined the effectiveness of a 20% price discount on food and drink purchases with and without consumer education in remote Indigenous Australia. A 20% discount on fruit, vegetables, water, and artificially sweetened soft drinks was applied for 24 weeks in 20 communities in remote Indigenous Australia where the community store was managed by the Arnhem Land Progress Aboriginal Corporation (ALPA) or Outback Stores (OBS) in a stepped-wedge randomised trial. Communities were randomly allocated to a fixed framework of five sets of four stratified by store association; ten stores (two in each set) were randomly assigned to receive consumer education. A store from each of the ALPA and OBS store groups (contained in separate opaque envelopes) was selected, and stores in turn continued to be consecutively allocated to the fixed store set framework, starting with the first store slot in the first store set, until all stores had been allocated. The effect of the discount on the weight of fruit and vegetables purchased (the primary endpoint) was assessed using weekly store sales data and mixed models per protocol. We did sensitivity analyses by repeating the analyses with the outliers included and repeating the analyses for the primary outcome measure removing each store one at a time. This trial was registered with Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry, number ACTRN12613000694718. Weekly store sales data on all food and drink products sold in 20 stores were collected from July 1, 2012, to Dec 28, 2014. Price discount alone was associated with a 12·7% (95% CI 4·1-22·1) increase in purchases in grams of fruit and vegetables combined (primary outcome), and a 19·8% (6·2-35·1) increase post discount (after vs before); an effect of 12 g and 18 g per capita per day. Sensitivity analyses did not modify the results for the primary outcome measure. A 20% discount can only increase

  8. Promoting Recruitment using Information Management Efficiently (PRIME): a stepped-wedge, cluster randomised trial of a complex recruitment intervention embedded within the REstart or Stop Antithrombotics Randomised Trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maxwell, Amy E; Parker, Richard A; Drever, Jonathan; Rudd, Anthony; Dennis, Martin S; Weir, Christopher J; Al-Shahi Salman, Rustam

    2017-12-28

    Few interventions are proven to increase recruitment in clinical trials. Recruitment to RESTART, a randomised controlled trial of secondary prevention after stroke due to intracerebral haemorrhage, has been slower than expected. Therefore, we sought to investigate an intervention to boost recruitment to RESTART. We conducted a stepped-wedge, cluster randomised trial of a complex intervention to increase recruitment, embedded within the RESTART trial. The primary objective was to investigate if the PRIME complex intervention (a recruitment co-ordinator who conducts a recruitment review, provides access to bespoke stroke audit data exports, and conducts a follow-up review after 6 months) increases the recruitment rate to RESTART. We included 72 hospital sites located in England, Wales, or Scotland that were active in RESTART in June 2015. All sites began in the control state and were allocated using block randomisation stratified by hospital location (Scotland versus England/Wales) to start the complex intervention in one of 12 different months. The primary outcome was the number of patients randomised into RESTART per month per site. We quantified the effect of the complex intervention on the primary outcome using a negative binomial, mixed model adjusting for site, December/January months, site location, and background time trends in recruitment rate. We recruited and randomised 72 sites and recorded their monthly recruitment to RESTART over 24 months (March 2015 to February 2017 inclusive), providing 1728 site-months of observations for the primary analysis. The adjusted rate ratio for the number of patients randomised per month after allocation to the PRIME complex intervention versus control time before allocation to the PRIME complex intervention was 1.06 (95% confidence interval 0.55 to 2.03, p = 0.87). Although two thirds of respondents to the 6-month follow-up questionnaire agreed that the audit reports were useful, only six patients were reported to

  9. A structural multidisciplinary approach to depression management in nursing-home residents: a multicentre, stepped-wedge cluster-randomised trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leontjevas, Ruslan; Gerritsen, Debby L; Smalbrugge, Martin; Teerenstra, Steven; Vernooij-Dassen, Myrra J F J; Koopmans, Raymond T C M

    2013-06-29

    Depression in nursing-home residents is often under-recognised. We aimed to establish the effectiveness of a structural approach to its management. Between May 15, 2009, and April 30, 2011, we undertook a multicentre, stepped-wedge cluster-randomised trial in four provinces of the Netherlands. A network of nursing homes was invited to enrol one dementia and one somatic unit per nursing home. In enrolled units, nursing-home staff recruited residents, who were eligible as long as we had received written informed consent. Units were randomly allocated to one of five groups with computer-generated random numbers. A multidisciplinary care programme, Act in Case of Depression (AiD), was implemented at different timepoints in each group: at baseline, no groups were implenting the programme (usual care); the first group implemented it shortly after baseline; and other groups sequentially began implementation after assessments at intervals of roughly 4 months. Residents did not know when the intervention was being implemented or what the programme elements were; research staff were masked to intervention implementation, depression treatment, and results of previous assessments; and data analysts were masked to intervention implementation. The primary endpoint was depression prevalence in units, which was the proportion of residents per unit with a score of more than seven on the proxy-based Cornell scale for depression in dementia. Analyses were by intention to treat. This trial is registered with the Netherlands National Trial Register, number NTR1477. 16 dementia units (403 residents) and 17 somatic units (390 residents) were enrolled in the course of the study. In somatic units, AiD reduced prevalence of depression (adjusted effect size -7·3%, 95% CI -13·7 to -0·9). The effect was not significant in dementia units (0·6, -5·6 to 6·8) and differed significantly from that in somatic units (p=0·031). Adherence to depression assessment procedures was lower in dementia

  10. Evaluation of a program for routine implementation of shared decision-making in cancer care: study protocol of a stepped wedge cluster randomized trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scholl, Isabelle; Hahlweg, Pola; Lindig, Anja; Bokemeyer, Carsten; Coym, Anja; Hanken, Henning; Müller, Volkmar; Smeets, Ralf; Witzel, Isabell; Kriston, Levente; Härter, Martin

    2018-03-27

    Shared decision-making (SDM) has become increasingly important in health care. However, despite scientific evidence, effective implementation strategies, and a prominent position on the health policy agenda, SDM is not widely implemented in routine practice so far. Therefore, we developed a program for routine implementation of SDM in oncology by conducting an analysis of the current state and a needs assessment in a pilot study based on the Consolidated Framework for Implementation Research (CFIR). Based on these results, the main aim of our current study is to evaluate the process and outcome of this theoretically and empirically grounded multicomponent implementation program designed to foster SDM in routine cancer care. We use a stepped wedge design, a variant of the cluster randomized controlled trial. The intervention to be implemented is SDM. Three participating clinics of one comprehensive cancer center will be randomized and receive the multicomponent SDM implementation program in a time-delayed sequence. The program consists of the following strategies: (a) SDM training for health care professionals, (b) individual coaching for physicians, (c) patient activation strategy, (d) provision of patient information material and decision aids, (e) revision of the clinics' quality management documents, and (f) critical reflection of current organization of multidisciplinary team meetings. We will conduct a mixed methods outcome and process evaluation. The outcome evaluation will consist of four measurement points. The primary outcome is adoption of SDM, measured by the 9-item Shared Decision Making Questionnaire. A range of other implementation outcomes will be assessed (i.e., acceptability, readiness for implementing change, appropriateness, penetration). The implementation process will be evaluated using stakeholder interviews and field notes. This will allow adapting interventions if necessary. This study is the first large study on routine implementation of

  11. The effect of a complementary e-learning course on implementation of a quality improvement project regarding care for elderly patients: a stepped wedge trial

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Van de Steeg Lotte

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Delirium occurs frequently in elderly hospitalised patients and is associated with higher mortality, increased length of hospital stay, functional decline, and admission to long-term care. Healthcare professionals frequently do not recognise delirium, indicating that education can play an important role in improving delirium care for hospitalised elderly. Previous studies have indicated that e-learning can provide an effective way of educating healthcare professionals and improving quality of care, though results are inconsistent. Methods and design This stepped wedge cluster randomised trial will assess the effects of a complementary delirium e-learning course on the implementation of quality improvement initiative, which aims to enhance the recognition and management of delirium in elderly patients. The trial will be conducted in 18 Dutch hospitals and last 11 months. Measurements will be taken in all participating wards using monthly record reviews, in order to monitor delivered care. These measurements will include the percentage of elderly patients who were screened for the risk of developing delirium, use of the Delirium Observation Screening scale, use of nursing or medical interventions, and the percentage of elderly patients who were diagnosed with delirium. Data regarding the e-learning course will be gathered as well. These data will include user characteristics, information regarding use of the course, delirium knowledge before and after using the course, and the attitude and intentions of nurses concerning delirium care. Setting The study will be conducted in internal medicine and surgical wards of eighteen hospitals that are at the beginning stages of implementing the Frail Elderly Project in the Netherlands. Discussion Better recognition of elderly patients at risk for delirium and subsequent care is expected from the introduction of an e-learning course for nurses that is complementary to an existing quality

  12. The effectiveness of a semi-tailored facilitator-based intervention to optimise chronic care management in general practice: a stepped-wedge randomised controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Due, Tina Drud; Thorsen, Thorkil; Kousgaard, Marius Brostrøm; Siersma, Volkert Dirk; Waldorff, Frans Boch

    2014-04-09

    The Danish health care sector is reorganising based on disease management programmes designed to secure integrated and high quality chronic care across hospitals, general practitioners and municipalities. The disease management programmes assign a central role to general practice; and in the Capital Region of Denmark a facilitator-based intervention was undertaken to support the implementation of the programmes in general practice. The purpose of the study was to assess the effectiveness of this semi-tailored facilitator-based intervention. The study was a stepped-wedge, randomised, controlled trial among general practices in the Capital Region of Denmark. The intervention group was offered three one-hour visits by a facilitator. The intervention was semi-tailored to the perceived needs as defined by each general practice, and the practices could choose from a list of possible topics. The control group was a delayed intervention group. The primary outcome was change in the number of annual chronic disease check-ups. Secondary outcomes were: changes in the number of annual check-ups for type 2 diabetes (DM2) and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD); changes in the number of spirometry tests, changes in the use of ICPC diagnosis coding and patient stratification; sign-up for a software program for patient overview; and reduction in number of practices with few annual chronic disease check-ups. We randomised 189 general practices: 96 practices were allocated to the intervention group and 93 to the delayed intervention group. For the primary outcome, 94 and 89 practices were analysed. Almost every outcome improved from baseline to follow-up in both allocation groups. At follow-up there was no difference between allocation groups for the primary outcome (p = 0.1639). However, some secondary outcomes favoured the intervention: a higher reported use of ICPC diagnosis coding for DM2 and COPD (p = 0.0050, p = 0.0243 respectively), stratification for COPD (p = 0

  13. Sustained employability of workers in a production environment: design of a stepped wedge trial to evaluate effectiveness and cost-benefit of the POSE program.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Holland, Berry J; de Boer, Michiel R; Brouwer, Sandra; Soer, Remko; Reneman, Michiel F

    2012-11-20

    Sustained employability and health are generating awareness of employers in an aging and more complex work force. To meet these needs, employers may offer their employees health surveillance programs, to increase opportunities to work on health and sustained employability. However, evidence for these health surveillance programs is lacking. The FLESH study (Functional Labour Evaluation for Sustained Health and employment) was developed to evaluate a comprehensive workers' health promotion program on its effectiveness, cost-benefit, and process of the intervention. The study is designed as a cluster randomised stepped wedge trial with randomisation at company plant level and is carried out in a large meat processing company. Every contracted employee is offered the opportunity to participate in the POSE program (Promotion Of Sustained Employability). The main goals of the POSE program are 1) providing employee's insight into their current employability and health status, 2) offering opportunities to improve employability and decrease health risks and 3) improving employability and health sustainably in order to keep them healthy at work. The program consists of a broad assessment followed by a counselling session and, if needed, a tailored intervention. Measurements will be performed at baseline and will be followed up at 20, 40, 60, 80, 106 and 132 weeks. The primary outcome measures are work ability, productivity and absenteeism. Secondary outcomes include health status, vitality, and psychosocial workload. A cost-benefit study will be conducted from the employers' perspective. A process evaluation will be conducted and the satisfaction of employer and employees with the program will be assessed. This study provides information on the effectiveness of the POSE program on sustained employment. When the program proves to be effective, employees benefit by improved work ability, and health. Employers benefit from healthier employees, reduced sick leave (costs) and

  14. Stiction in surface micromachining

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tas, Niels Roelof; Sonnenberg, A.H.; Jansen, Henricus V.; Legtenberg, R.; Legtenberg, Rob; Elwenspoek, Michael Curt

    1996-01-01

    Due to the smoothness of the surfaces in surface micromachining, large adhesion forces between fabricated structures and the substrate are encountered. Four major adhesion mechanisms have been analysed: capillary forces, hydrogen bridging, electrostatic forces and van der Waals forces. Once contact

  15. Silicon-micromachined microchannel plates

    CERN Document Server

    Beetz, C P; Steinbeck, J; Lemieux, B; Winn, D R

    2000-01-01

    Microchannel plates (MCP) fabricated from standard silicon wafer substrates using a novel silicon micromachining process, together with standard silicon photolithographic process steps, are described. The resulting SiMCP microchannels have dimensions of approx 0.5 to approx 25 mu m, with aspect ratios up to 300, and have the dimensional precision and absence of interstitial defects characteristic of photolithographic processing, compatible with positional matching to silicon electronics readouts. The open channel areal fraction and detection efficiency may exceed 90% on plates up to 300 mm in diameter. The resulting silicon substrates can be converted entirely to amorphous quartz (qMCP). The strip resistance and secondary emission are developed by controlled depositions of thin films, at temperatures up to 1200 deg. C, also compatible with high-temperature brazing, and can be essentially hydrogen, water and radionuclide-free. Novel secondary emitters and cesiated photocathodes can be high-temperature deposite...

  16. Effectiveness and safety of misoprostol distributed to antenatal women to prevent postpartum haemorrhage after child-births: a stepped-wedge cluster-randomized trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ononge, Sam; Campbell, Oona M R; Kaharuza, Frank; Lewis, James J; Fielding, Katherine; Mirembe, Florence

    2015-11-26

    Oral misoprostol, administered by trained health-workers is effective and safe for preventing postpartum haemorrhage (PPH). There is interest in expanding administration of misoprostol by non-health workers, including task-shifting to pregnant women themselves. However, the use of misoprostol for preventing PPH in home-births remains controversial, due to the limited evidence to support self-administration or leaving it in the hands of non-health workers. This study aimed to determine if antenatally distributing misoprostol to pregnant women to self-administer at home birth reduces PPH. Between February 2013 and March 2014, we conducted a stepped-wedge cluster-randomized trial in six health facilities in Central Uganda. Women at 28+ weeks of gestation attending antenatal care were eligible. Women in the control-arm received the standard-of-care; while the intervention-arm were offered 600 mcg of misoprostol to swallow immediately after birth of baby, when oxytocin was not available. The primary outcome (PPH) was a drop in postpartum maternal haemoglobin (Hb) by ≥ 2 g/dl, lower than the prenatal Hb. Analysis was by intention-to-treat at the cluster level and we used a paired t-tests to assess whether the mean difference between the control and intervention groups was statistically significant. 97% (2466/2545) of eligible women consented to participate; 1430 and 1036 in the control and intervention arms respectively. Two thousand fifty-seven of the participants were successfully followed up and 271 (13.2%) delivered outside a health facility. There was no significant difference between the study group in number of women who received a uterotonic at birth (control 80.4% vs intervention 91.4%, mean difference = -11.0%, 95% confidence interval [CI] -25.7% to 3.6%, p = 0.11). No woman took misoprostol before their baby's birth. Shivering and fever were 14.9% in the control arm compared to 22.2% in the intervention arm (mean difference = -7.2%, 95% CI -11.1% to -3

  17. Micromachining with copper lasers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knowles, Martyn R. H.; Bell, Andy; Foster-Turner, Gideon; Rutterford, Graham; Chudzicki, J.; Kearsley, Andrew J.

    1997-04-01

    In recent years the copper laser has undergone extensive development and has emerged as a leading and unique laser for micromachining. The copper laser is a high average power (10 - 250 W), high pulse repetition rate (2 - 32 kHz), visible laser (511 nm and 578 nm) that produces high peak power (typically 200 kW), short pulses (30 ns) and very good beam quality (diffraction limited). This unique set of laser parameters results in exceptional micro-machining in a wide variety of materials. Typical examples of the capabilities of the copper laser include the drilling of small holes (10 - 200 micrometer diameter) in materials as diverse as steel, ceramic, diamond and polyimide with micron precision and low taper (less than 1 degree) cutting and profiling of diamond. Application of the copper laser covers the electronic, aerospace, automotive, nuclear, medical and precision engineering industries.

  18. Fidelity considerations in translational research: Eating As Treatment - a stepped wedge, randomised controlled trial of a dietitian delivered behaviour change counselling intervention for head and neck cancer patients undergoing radiotherapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beck, Alison Kate; Baker, Amanda; Britton, Ben; Wratten, Chris; Bauer, Judith; Wolfenden, Luke; Carter, Gregory

    2015-10-15

    The confidence with which researchers can comment on intervention efficacy relies on evaluation and consideration of intervention fidelity. Accordingly, there have been calls to increase the transparency with which fidelity methodology is reported. Despite this, consideration and/or reporting of fidelity methods remains poor. We seek to address this gap by describing the methodology for promoting and facilitating the evaluation of intervention fidelity in The EAT (Eating As Treatment) project: a multi-site stepped wedge randomised controlled trial of a dietitian delivered behaviour change counselling intervention to improve nutrition (primary outcome) in head and neck cancer patients undergoing radiotherapy. In accordance with recommendations from the National Institutes of Health Behaviour Change Consortium Treatment Fidelity Workgroup, we sought to maximise fidelity in this stepped wedge randomised controlled trial via strategies implemented from study design through to provider training, intervention delivery and receipt. As the EAT intervention is designed to be incorporated into standard dietetic consultations, we also address unique challenges for translational research. We offer a strong model for improving the quality of translational findings via real world application of National Institutes of Health Behaviour Change Consortium recommendations. Greater transparency in the reporting of behaviour change research is an important step in improving the progress and quality of behaviour change research. ACTRN12613000320752 (Date of registration 21 March 2013).

  19. Method of drying passivated micromachines by dewetting from a liquid-based process

    Science.gov (United States)

    Houston, Michael R.; Howe, Roger T.; Maboudian, Roya; Srinivasan, Uthara

    2000-01-01

    A method of fabricating a micromachine includes the step of constructing a low surface energy film on the micromachine. The micromachine is then rinsed with a rinse liquid that has a high surface energy, relative to the low surface energy film, to produce a contact angle of greater than 90.degree. between the low surface energy film and the rinse liquid. This relatively large contact angle causes any rinse liquid on the micromachine to be displaced from the micromachine when the micromachine is removed from the rinse liquid. In other words, the micromachine is dried by dewetting from a liquid-based process. Thus, a separate evaporative drying step is not required, as the micromachine is removed from the liquid-based process in a dry state. The relatively large contact angle also operates to prevent attractive capillary forces between micromachine components, thereby preventing contact and adhesion between adjacent microstructure surfaces. The low surface energy film may be constructed with a fluorinated self-assembled monolayer film. The processing of the invention avoids the use of environmentally harmful, health-hazardous chemicals.

  20. Dosimetry and clinical implementation of dynamic wedge

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Klein, Eric E.; Low, Daniel A.; Meigooni, Ali S.; Purdy, James A.

    1995-01-01

    Purpose: Wedge-shaped isodoses are desired in a number of clinical situations. Physical wedge filters have provided nominal angled isodoses with dosimetric consequences of beam hardening, increased peripheral dosing, nonidealized gradients at deep depths, along with the practical consequences of filter handling and placement problems. Dynamic wedging uses a combination of a moving jaw and changing dose rate to achieve angled isodoses. The clinical implementation of dynamic wedge and an accompanying quality assurance program are discussed in detail. Methods and Materials: The accelerator at our facility has two photon energies (6 MV and 18 MV), currently with dynamic wedge angles of 15 deg. , 30 deg. , 45 deg. , and 60 deg. . The segmented treatment tables (STT) that drive the jaw in concert with a changing dose rate are unique for field sizes ranging from 4.0 cm to 20.0 cm in 05 cm steps, resulting in 256 STTs. Transmission wedge factors were measured for each STT with an ion chamber. Isodose profiles were accumulated with film after dose conversion. For treatment-planning purposes, d max orthogonal dose profiles were measured for open and dynamic fields. Physical filters were assigned empirically via the ratio of open and wedge profiles. Results: A nonlinear relationship with wedge factor and field size was found. The factors were found to be independent of the stationary field setting or second order blocking. Dynamic wedging provided more consistent gradients across the field compared with physical filters. Percent depth doses were found to be closer to open field. The created physical filters provided planned isodoses that closely resembled measured isodoses. Comparative isodose plans show improvement with dynamic wedging. Conclusions: Dynamic weding has practical and dosimetric advantages over physical filters. Table collisions with physical filters are alleviated. Treatment planning has been solved with an empirical solution. Dynamic wedge is a positive

  1. Effectiveness of Seasonal Malaria Chemoprevention in Children under Ten Years of Age in Senegal: A Stepped-Wedge Cluster-Randomised Trial.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Badara Cissé

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Seasonal Malaria Chemoprevention (SMC with sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine (SP plus amodiaquine (AQ, given each month during the transmission season, is recommended for children living in areas of the Sahel where malaria transmission is highly seasonal. The recommendation for SMC is currently limited to children under five years of age, but, in many areas of seasonal transmission, the burden in older children may justify extending this age limit. This study was done to determine the effectiveness of SMC in Senegalese children up to ten years of age.SMC was introduced into three districts over three years in central Senegal using a stepped-wedge cluster-randomised design. A census of the population was undertaken and a surveillance system was established to record all deaths and to record all cases of malaria seen at health facilities. A pharmacovigilance system was put in place to detect adverse drug reactions. Fifty-four health posts were randomised. Nine started implementation of SMC in 2008, 18 in 2009, and a further 18 in 2010, with 9 remaining as controls. In the first year of implementation, SMC was delivered to children aged 3-59 months; the age range was then extended for the latter two years of the study to include children up to 10 years of age. Cluster sample surveys at the end of each transmission season were done to measure coverage of SMC and the prevalence of parasitaemia and anaemia, to monitor molecular markers of drug resistance, and to measure insecticide-treated net (ITN use. Entomological monitoring and assessment of costs of delivery in each health post and of community attitudes to SMC were also undertaken. About 780,000 treatments were administered over three years. Coverage exceeded 80% each month. Mortality, the primary endpoint, was similar in SMC and control areas (4.6 and 4.5 per 1000 respectively in children under 5 years and 1.3 and 1.2 per 1000 in children 5-9 years of age; the overall mortality rate ratio [SMC: no SMC

  2. Trends in laser micromachining

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaebler, Frank; van Nunen, Joris; Held, Andrew

    2016-03-01

    Laser Micromachining is well established in industry. Depending on the application lasers with pulse length from μseconds to femtoseconds and wavelengths from 1064nm and its harmonics up to 5μm or 10.6μm are used. Ultrafast laser machining using pulses with pico or femtosecond duration pulses is gaining traction, as it offers very precise processing of materials with low thermal impact. Large-scale industrial ultrafast laser applications show that the market can be divided into various sub segments. One set of applications demand low power around 10W, compact footprint and are extremely sensitive to the laser price whilst still demanding 10ps or shorter laser pulses. A second set of applications are very power hungry and only become economically feasible for large scale deployments at power levels in the 100+W class. There is also a growing demand for applications requiring fs-laser pulses. In our presentation we would like to describe these sub segments by using selected applications from the automotive and electronics industry e.g. drilling of gas/diesel injection nozzles, dicing of LED substrates. We close the presentation with an outlook to micromachining applications e.g. glass cutting and foil processing with unique new CO lasers emitting 5μm laser wavelength.

  3. Silicon-micromachined microchannel plates

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Beetz, Charles P.; Boerstler, Robert; Steinbeck, John; Lemieux, Bryan; Winn, David R.

    2000-01-01

    Microchannel plates (MCP) fabricated from standard silicon wafer substrates using a novel silicon micromachining process, together with standard silicon photolithographic process steps, are described. The resulting SiMCP microchannels have dimensions of ∼0.5 to ∼25 μm, with aspect ratios up to 300, and have the dimensional precision and absence of interstitial defects characteristic of photolithographic processing, compatible with positional matching to silicon electronics readouts. The open channel areal fraction and detection efficiency may exceed 90% on plates up to 300 mm in diameter. The resulting silicon substrates can be converted entirely to amorphous quartz (qMCP). The strip resistance and secondary emission are developed by controlled depositions of thin films, at temperatures up to 1200 deg. C, also compatible with high-temperature brazing, and can be essentially hydrogen, water and radionuclide-free. Novel secondary emitters and cesiated photocathodes can be high-temperature deposited or nucleated in the channels or the first strike surface. Results on resistivity, secondary emission and gain are presented

  4. Age Nutrition Chirugie (ANC) study: impact of a geriatric intervention on the screening and management of undernutrition in elderly patients operated on for colon cancer, a stepped wedge controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dupuis, Marine; Kuczewski, Elisabetta; Villeneuve, Laurent; Bin-Dorel, Sylvie; Haine, Max; Falandry, Claire; Gilbert, Thomas; Passot, Guillaume; Glehen, Olivier; Bonnefoy, Marc

    2017-01-07

    Undernutrition prior to major abdominal surgery is frequent and increases morbidity and mortality, especially in older patients. The management of undernutrition reduces postoperative complications. Nutritional management should be a priority in patient care during the preoperative period. However undernutrition is rarely detected and the guidelines are infrequently followed. Preoperative undernutrition screening should allow a better implementation of the guidelines. The ANC ("Age Nutrition Chirurgie") study is an interventional, comparative, prospective, multicenter, randomized protocol based on the stepped wedge trial design. For the intervention, the surgeon will inform the patient of the establishment of a systematic preoperative geriatric assessment that will allow the preoperative diagnosis of the nutritional status and the implementation of an adjusted nutritional support in accordance with the nutritional guidelines. The primary outcome measure is to determine the impact of the geriatric intervention on the level of perioperative nutritional management, in accordance with the current European guidelines. The implementation of the intervention in the five participating centers will be rolled-out sequentially over six time periods (every six months). Investigators must recommend that all patients aged 70 years or over and who are consulting for a surgery for a colorectal cancer should consider participating in this study. The ANC study is based on an original methodology, the stepped wedge trial design, which is appropriate for evaluating the implementation of a geriatric and nutritional assessment during the perioperative period. We describe the purpose of this geriatric intervention, which is expected to apply the ESPEN and SFNEP recommendations through the establishment of an undernutrition screening and a management program for patients with cancer. This intervention should allow a decrease in patient morbidity and mortality due to undernutrition. This

  5. Sleeping Well Trial: Increasing the effectiveness of treatment with continuous positive airway pressure using a weight management program in overweight adults with obstructive sleep apnoea-A stepped wedge randomised trial protocol.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Truby, Helen; Edwards, Bradley A; O'Driscoll, Denise M; Young, Alan; Ghazi, Ladan; Bristow, Claire; Roem, Kerryn; Bonham, Maxine P; Murgia, Chiara; Day, Kaitlin; Haines, Terry P; Hamilton, Garun S

    2018-05-24

    The majority of adults diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) are overweight or obese. Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) is the most common effective therapy for OSA. However, adherence declines over time with only 50% of patients prescribed CPAP continuing to use it long term. Furthermore, a recent prospective analysis indicated that those more adherent with CPAP therapy have enhanced weight gain trajectories which in turn may negatively impact their OSA. The Sleeping Well Trial aims to establish whether the timing of starting a lifestyle weight loss intervention impacts on weight trajectory in those with moderate-severe OSA treated at home with CPAP, while testing the potential for smart phone technology to improve adherence with lifestyle interventions. A stepped wedge design with randomisation of individuals from 1 to 6 months post-enrolment, with 5 months of additional prospective follow up after completion of the stepped wedge. This design will investigate the effect of the 6-month lifestyle intervention on people undergoing CPAP on body weight, body composition and health-related quality of life. This trial tests whether the timing of supporting the patient through a weight loss intervention is important in obtaining the maximum benefit of a lifestyle change and CPAP usage, and identify how best to support patients through this critical period. The protocol (v1) is registered prospectively with the International Clinical Trials Registry (CTR) ACTRN12616000203459 (public access). Any amendments to protocol will be documented via the CTR. Recruitment commenced in March 2016 with data collection scheduled to finish by May 2018. © 2018 Dietitians Association of Australia.

  6. Modelling the wedge shape for the virtual wedge

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chang Liyun; Ho Shengyow; Chen, Helen H W

    2003-01-01

    We present a method to model the virtual wedge shape in a 3D treatment planning system as a physical wedge. The virtual wedge shape was determined using the measured dose profile of the virtual wedge at a chosen reference depth. The differences between the calculated and the measured dose profiles for the virtual wedge were within 0.5% at the reference depth, and within 2.5% at other depths. This method provides a fast and accurate way to implement the virtual wedge into our planning system for any wedge angles. This method is also applicable to model the physical wedge shapes with comparable good results

  7. Physical characteristics comparison of virtual wedge device with physical wedge

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cho, Jung Keun; Choi, Kye Sook; Lim, Cheong Hwan; Kim, Jeong Koo; Jung, Hong Ryang; Lee, Jung Ok; Lee, Man Goo

    2001-01-01

    We compared the characteristics of Siemens virtual wedge device with physical wedges for clinical application. We investigated the characteristics of virtual and physical wedges for various wedge angles (15, 30, 45, and 60) using 6- and 15- MV photon beams. Wedge factors were measured in water using an ion chamber for various field sizes and depths. In case of virtual wedge device, as upper jaw moves during irradiation, wedge angles were estimated by accumulated doses. These measurements were performed at off-axis points perpendicular to the beam central axis in water for a 15 cm x 20 cm radiation field size at the depth of 10 cm. Surface does without and with virtual or physical wedges were measured using a parallel plate ion chamber at surface. Field size was 15 cm * 20 cm and a polystyrene phantom was used. For various field sizes, virtual and physical wedge factors were changed by maximum 2.1% and 3.9%, respectively. For various depths, virtual and physical wedge factors were changed by maximum 1.9% and 2.9%, respectively. No major difference was found between the virtual and physical wedge angles and the difference was within 0.5. Surface dose with physical wedge was reduced by maximum 20% (x-ray beam : 6 MV, wedge angle : 45, SSD : 80 cm) relative to one with virtual wedge or without wedge. Comparison of the characteristics of Siemens virtual wedge device with physical wedges was performed. Depth dependence of virtual wedge factor was smaller than that of physical wedge factor. Virtual and physical wedge factors were nearly independent of field sizes. The accuracy of virtual and physical wedge angles was excellent. Surface dose was found to be reduced using a physical wedge

  8. Physical characteristics comparison of virtual wedge device with physical wedge

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Choi, Dong Rak; Shin, Kyung Hwan; Lee, Kyu Chan; Kim, Dae Yong; Ahn, Yong Chan; Lim, Do Hoon; Kim, Moon Kyung; Huh, Seung Jae

    1999-01-01

    We have compared the characteristics of Siemens virtual wedge device with physical wedges for clinical application. We investigated the characteristics of virtual and physical wedges for various wedge angles (15, 30, 45, and 60 ) using 6- and 15MV photon beams. Wedge factors were measured in water using an ion chamber for various field sizes and depths. In case of virtual wedge device, as upper jaw moves during irradiation, wedge angles were estimated by accumulated doses. These measurements were performed at off-axis points perpendicular to the beam central axis in water for a 15 cm x 20 cm radiation field size at the depth of 10 cm. Surface doses without and with virtual or physical wedges were measured using a parallel plate ion chamber at surface. Field size was 15 cm x 20 cm and a polystyrene phantom was used. For various field sizes, virtual and physical wedge factors were changed by maximum 2.1% and 3.9%, respectively. For various depths, virtual and physical wedge factors were changed by maximum 1.9% and 2.9%, respectively. No major difference was found between the virtual and physical wedge angles and the difference was within 0.5 .deg. . Surface dose with physical wedge was reduced by maximum 20% (x-ray beam: 6 MV, wedge angle: 45 .deg. , SSD: 80cm) relative to one with virtual wedge or without wedge. Comparison of the characteristics of Siemens virtual wedge device with physical wedges was performed. Depth dependence of virtual wedge factor was smaller than that of physical wedge factor. Virtual and physical wedge factors were nearly independent of field sizes. The accuracy of virtual and physical wedge angles was excellent. Surface dose was found to be reduced using physical wedge

  9. Optical wireless communications for micromachines

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Brien, Dominic C.; Yuan, Wei Wen; Liu, Jing Jing; Faulkner, Grahame E.; Elston, Steve J.; Collins, Steve; Parry-Jones, Lesley A.

    2006-08-01

    A key challenge for wireless sensor networks is minimizing the energy required for network nodes to communicate with each other, and this becomes acute for self-powered devices such as 'smart dust'. Optical communications is a potentially attractive solution for such devices. The University of Oxford is currently involved in a project to build optical wireless links to smart dust. Retro-reflectors combined with liquid crystal modulators can be integrated with the micro-machine to create a low power transceiver. When illuminated from a base station a modulated beam is returned, transmitting data. Data from the base station can be transmitted using modulation of the illuminating beam and a receiver at the micro-machine. In this paper we outline the energy consumption and link budget considerations in the design of such micro-machines, and report preliminary experimental results.

  10. Micromachined tunable metamaterials: a review

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Liu, A Q; Zhu, W M; Tsai, D P; Zheludev, N I

    2012-01-01

    This paper reviews micromachined tunable metamaterials, whereby the tuning capabilities are based on the mechanical reconfiguration of the lattice and/or the metamaterial element geometry. The primary focus of this review is the feasibility of the realization of micromachined tunable metamaterials via structure reconfiguration and the current state of the art in the fabrication technologies of structurally reconfigurable metamaterial elements. The micromachined reconfigurable microstructures not only offer a new tuning method for metamaterials without being limited by the nonlinearity of constituent materials, but also enable a new paradigm of reconfigurable metamaterial-based devices with mechanical actuations. With recent development in nanomachining technology, it is possible to develop structurally reconfigurable metamaterials with faster tuning speed, higher density of integration and more flexible choice of the working frequencies. (review article)

  11. Promoting deceased organ and tissue donation registration in family physician waiting rooms (RegisterNow-1 trial): study protocol for a pragmatic, stepped-wedge, cluster randomized controlled registry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Alvin H; Garg, Amit X; Prakash, Versha; Grimshaw, Jeremy M; Taljaard, Monica; Mitchell, Joanna; Matti, Danny; Linklater, Stefanie; Naylor, Kyla L; Dixon, Stephanie; Faulds, Cathy; Bevan, Rachel; Getchell, Leah; Knoll, Greg; Kim, S Joseph; Sontrop, Jessica; Bjerre, Lise M; Tong, Allison; Presseau, Justin

    2017-12-21

    There is a worldwide shortage of organs available for transplant, leading to preventable mortality associated with end-stage organ disease. While most citizens in many countries with an intent-to-donate "opt-in" system support organ donation, registration rates remain low. In Canada, most Canadians support organ donation but less than 25% in most provinces have registered their desire to donate their organs when they die. The family physician office is a promising yet underused setting in which to promote organ donor registration and address known barriers and enablers to registering for deceased organ and tissue donation. We developed a protocol to evaluate an intervention to promote registration for organ and tissue donation in family physician waiting rooms. This protocol describes a planned, stepped-wedge, cluster randomized registry trial in six family physician offices in Ontario, Canada to evaluate the effectiveness of reception staff providing patients with a pamphlet that addresses barriers and enablers to registration including a description of how to register for organ donation. An Internet-enabled tablet will also be provided in waiting rooms so that interested patients can register while waiting for their appointments. Family physicians and reception staff will be provided with training and/or materials to support any conversations about organ donation with their patients. Following a 2-week control period, the six offices will cross sequentially into the intervention arm in randomized sequence at 2-week intervals until all offices deliver the intervention. The primary outcome will be the proportion of patients visiting the office who are registered organ donors 7 days following their office visit. We will evaluate this outcome using routinely collected registry data from provincial administrative databases. A post-trial qualitative evaluation process will assess the experiences of reception staff and family physicians with the intervention and the

  12. Effectiveness, cost-utility and implementation of a decision aid for patients with localised prostate cancer and their partners: study protocol of a stepped-wedge cluster randomised controlled trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Itejawi, Hoda H M; van Uden-Kraan, Cornelia F; van de Ven, Peter M; Coupé, Veerle M H; Vis, André N; Nieuwenhuijzen, Jakko A; van Moorselaar, Jeroen A; Verdonck-de Leeuw, Irma M

    2017-01-01

    Introduction Patient decision aids (PDAs) have been developed to help patients make an informed choice for a treatment option. Despite proven benefits, structural implementation falls short of expectations. The present study aims to assess the effectiveness and cost-utility of the PDA among newly diagnosed patients with localised prostate cancer and their partners, alongside implementation of the PDA in routine care. Methods/analysis A stepped-wedge cluster randomised trial will be conducted. The PDA will be sequentially implemented in 18 hospitals in the Netherlands, over a period of 24 months. Every 3 or 6 months, a new cluster of hospitals will switch from usual care to care including a PDA. The primary outcome measure is decisional conflict experienced by the patient. Secondary outcomes comprise the patient’s quality of life, treatment preferences, role in the decision making, expectations of treatment, knowledge, need for supportive care and decision regret. Furthermore, societal cost-utility will be valued. Other outcome measures considered are the partner’s treatment preferences, experienced participation to decision making, quality of life, communication between patient, partner and health care professional, and the effect of prostate cancer on the relationship, social contacts and their role as caregiver. Patients and partners receiving the PDA will also be asked about their satisfaction with the PDA. Baseline assessment takes place after the treatment choice and before the start of a treatment, with follow-up assessments at 3, 6 and 12 months following the end of treatment or the day after deciding on active surveillance. Outcome measures on implementation include the implementation rate (defined as the proportion of all eligible patients who will receive a PDA) and a questionnaire for health care professionals on determinants of implementing an innovation. Ethics and dissemination This study will be conducted in accordance with local laws and

  13. Effectiveness, cost-utility and implementation of a decision aid for patients with localised prostate cancer and their partners: study protocol of a stepped-wedge cluster randomised controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Itejawi, Hoda H M; van Uden-Kraan, Cornelia F; van de Ven, Peter M; Coupé, Veerle M H; Vis, André N; Nieuwenhuijzen, Jakko A; van Moorselaar, Jeroen A; Verdonck-de Leeuw, Irma M

    2017-09-15

    Patient decision aids (PDAs) have been developed to help patients make an informed choice for a treatment option. Despite proven benefits, structural implementation falls short of expectations. The present study aims to assess the effectiveness and cost-utility of the PDA among newly diagnosed patients with localised prostate cancer and their partners, alongside implementation of the PDA in routine care. A stepped-wedge cluster randomised trial will be conducted. The PDA will be sequentially implemented in 18 hospitals in the Netherlands, over a period of 24 months. Every 3 or 6 months, a new cluster of hospitals will switch from usual care to care including a PDA.The primary outcome measure is decisional conflict experienced by the patient. Secondary outcomes comprise the patient's quality of life, treatment preferences, role in the decision making, expectations of treatment, knowledge, need for supportive care and decision regret. Furthermore, societal cost-utility will be valued. Other outcome measures considered are the partner's treatment preferences, experienced participation to decision making, quality of life, communication between patient, partner and health care professional, and the effect of prostate cancer on the relationship, social contacts and their role as caregiver. Patients and partners receiving the PDA will also be asked about their satisfaction with the PDA.Baseline assessment takes place after the treatment choice and before the start of a treatment, with follow-up assessments at 3, 6 and 12 months following the end of treatment or the day after deciding on active surveillance. Outcome measures on implementation include the implementation rate (defined as the proportion of all eligible patients who will receive a PDA) and a questionnaire for health care professionals on determinants of implementing an innovation. This study will be conducted in accordance with local laws and regulations of the Medical Ethics Committee of VU University Medical

  14. Home visits as part of a new care pathway (iAID) to improve quality of care and quality of life in ostomy patients: a cluster-randomized stepped-wedge trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sier, M F; Oostenbroek, R J; Dijkgraaf, M G W; Veldink, G J; Bemelman, W A; Pronk, A; Spillenaar-Bilgen, E J; Kelder, W; Hoff, C; Ubbink, D T

    2017-08-01

    Morbidity in patients with an ostomy is high. A new care pathway, including perioperative home visits by enterostomal therapists, was studied to assess whether more elaborate education and closer guidance could reduce stoma-related complications and improve quality of life (QoL), at acceptable cost. Patients requiring an ileostomy or colostomy, for any inflammatory or malignant bowel disease, were included in a 15-centre cluster-randomized 'stepped-wedge' study. Primary outcomes were stoma-related complications and QoL, measured using the Stoma-QOL, 3 months after surgery. Secondary outcomes included costs of care. The standard pathway (SP) was followed by 113 patients and the new pathway (NP) by 105 patients. Although the overall number of stoma-related complications was similar in both groups (SP 156, NP 150), the proportion of patients experiencing one or more stoma-related complications was significantly higher in the NP (72% vs 84%, risk difference 12%; 95% CI: 0.3-23.3%). Although in the NP more patients had stoma-related complications, QoL scores were significantly better (P improved quality of care and life, against similar costs. Based on these results the NP, including perioperative home visits by an enterostomal therapist, can be recommended. Colorectal Disease © 2017 The Association of Coloproctology of Great Britain and Ireland.

  15. Rational and design of a stepped-wedge cluster randomized trial evaluating quality improvement initiative for reducing cardiovascular events among patients with acute coronary syndromes in resource-constrained hospitals in China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Shenshen; Wu, Yangfeng; Du, Xin; Li, Xian; Patel, Anushka; Peterson, Eric D; Turnbull, Fiona; Lo, Serigne; Billot, Laurent; Laba, Tracey; Gao, Runlin

    2015-03-01

    Acute coronary syndromes (ACSs) are a major cause of morbidity and mortality, yet effective ACS treatments are frequently underused in clinical practice. Randomized trials including the CPACS-2 study suggest that quality improvement initiatives can increase the use of effective treatments, but whether such programs can impact hard clinical outcomes has never been demonstrated in a well-powered randomized controlled trial. The CPACS-3 study is a stepped-wedge cluster-randomized trial conducted in 104 remote level 2 hospitals without PCI facilities in China. All hospitalized ACS patients will be recruited consecutively over a 30-month period to an anticipated total study population of more than 25,000 patients. After a 6-month baseline period, hospitals will be randomized to 1 of 4 groups, and a 6-component quality improvement intervention will be implemented sequentially in each group every 6months. These components include the following: establishment of a quality improvement team, implementation of a clinical pathway, training of physicians and nurses, hospital performance audit and feedback, online technical support, and patient education. All patients will be followed up for 6months postdischarge. The primary outcome will be the incidence of in-hospital major adverse cardiovascular events comprising all-cause mortality, myocardial infarction or reinfarction, and nonfatal stroke. The CPACS-3 study will be the first large randomized trial with sufficient power to assess the effects of a multifaceted quality of care improvement initiative on hard clinical outcomes, in patients with ACS. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Electron beam micromachining of plastics

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Dupák, Libor

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 49, 5-6 (2014), s. 310-314 ISSN 0861-4717 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) LO1212; GA MŠk ED0017/01/01; GA MŠk EE.2.3.20.0103 Institutional support: RVO:68081731 Keywords : micromachining of plastics * Electron beam Subject RIV: JA - Electronics ; Optoelectronics, Electrical Engineering

  17. Wedged multilayer Laue lens

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Conley, Ray; Liu Chian; Qian Jun; Kewish, Cameron M.; Macrander, Albert T.; Yan Hanfei; Maser, Joerg; Kang, Hyon Chol; Stephenson, G. Brian

    2008-01-01

    A multilayer Laue lens (MLL) is an x-ray focusing optic fabricated from a multilayer structure consisting of thousands of layers of two different materials produced by thin-film deposition. The sequence of layer thicknesses is controlled to satisfy the Fresnel zone plate law and the multilayer is sectioned to form the optic. An improved MLL geometry can be created by growing each layer with an in-plane thickness gradient to form a wedge, so that every interface makes the correct angle with the incident beam for symmetric Bragg diffraction. The ultimate hard x-ray focusing performance of a wedged MLL has been predicted to be significantly better than that of a nonwedged MLL, giving subnanometer resolution with high efficiency. Here, we describe a method to deposit the multilayer structure needed for an ideal wedged MLL and report our initial deposition results to produce these structures

  18. The PULSAR primary care protocol: a stepped-wedge cluster randomized controlled trial to test a training intervention for general practitioners in recovery-oriented practice to optimize personal recovery in adult patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Enticott, Joanne C; Shawyer, Frances; Brophy, Lisa; Russell, Grant; Fossey, Ellie; Inder, Brett; Mazza, Danielle; Vasi, Shiva; Weller, Penelope June; Wilson-Evered, Elisabeth; Edan, Vrinda; Meadows, Graham

    2016-12-20

    General practitioners (GPs) in Australia play a central role in the delivery of mental health care. This article describes the PULSAR (Principles Unite Local Services Assisting Recovery) Primary Care protocol, a novel mixed methods evaluation of a training intervention for GPs in recovery-oriented practice. The aim of the intervention is to optimize personal recovery in patients consulting study GPs for mental health issues. The intervention mixed methods design involves a stepped-wedge cluster randomized controlled trial testing the outcomes of training in recovery-oriented practice, together with an embedded qualitative study to identify the contextual enablers and challenges to implementing recovery-oriented practice. The project is conducted in Victoria, Australia between 2013 and 2017. Eighteen general practices and community health centers are randomly allocated to one of two steps (nine months apart) to start an intervention comprising GP training in the delivery of recovery-oriented practice. Data collection consists of cross-sectional surveys collected from patients of participating GPs at baseline, and again at the end of Steps 1 and 2. The primary outcome is improvement in personal recovery using responses to the Questionnaire about the Process of Recovery. Secondary outcomes are improvements in patient-rated measures of personal recovery and wellbeing, and of the recovery-oriented practice they have received, using the INSPIRE questionnaire, the Warwick-Edinburgh Mental Well-being Scale, and the Kessler Psychological Distress Scale. Participant data will be analyzed in the group that the cluster was assigned to at each study time point. Another per-protocol dataset will contain all data time-stamped according to the date of intervention received at each cluster site. Qualitative interviews with GPs and patients at three and nine months post-training will investigate experiences and challenges related to implementing recovery-oriented practice in primary

  19. Stepped-wedge cluster-randomised controlled trial to assess the cardiovascular health effects of a managed aquifer recharge initiative to reduce drinking water salinity in southwest coastal Bangladesh: study design and rationale.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naser, Abu Mohd; Unicomb, Leanne; Doza, Solaiman; Ahmed, Kazi Matin; Rahman, Mahbubur; Uddin, Mohammad Nasir; Quraishi, Shamshad B; Selim, Shahjada; Shamsudduha, Mohammad; Burgess, William; Chang, Howard H; Gribble, Matthew O; Clasen, Thomas F; Luby, Stephen P

    2017-09-01

    Saltwater intrusion and salinisation have contributed to drinking water scarcity in many coastal regions globally, leading to dependence on alternative sources for water supply. In southwest coastal Bangladesh, communities have few options but to drink brackish groundwater which has been associated with high blood pressure among the adult population, and pre-eclampsia and gestational hypertension among pregnant women. Managed aquifer recharge (MAR), the purposeful recharge of surface water or rainwater to aquifers to bring hydrological equilibrium, is a potential solution for salinity problem in southwest coastal Bangladesh by creating a freshwater lens within the brackish aquifer. Our study aims to evaluate whether consumption of MAR water improves human health, particularly by reducing blood pressure among communities in coastal Bangladesh. The study employs a stepped-wedge cluster-randomised controlled community trial design in 16 communities over five monthly visits. During each visit, we will collect data on participants' source of drinking and cooking water and measure the salinity level and electrical conductivity of household stored water. At each visit, we will also measure the blood pressure of participants ≥20 years of age and pregnant women and collect urine samples for urinary sodium and protein measurements. We will use generalised linear mixed models to determine the association of access to MAR water on blood pressure of the participants. The study protocol has been reviewed and approved by the Institutional Review Boards of the International Centre for Diarrheal Disease Research, Bangladesh (icddr,b). Informed written consent will be taken from all the participants. This study is funded by Wellcome Trust, UK. The study findings will be disseminated to the government partners, at research conferences and in peer-reviewed journals. NCT02746003; Pre-results. © Article author(s) (or their employer(s) unless otherwise stated in the text of the

  20. A multi-faceted workplace intervention targeting low back pain was effective for physical work demands and maladaptive pain behaviours, but not for work ability and sickness absence: Stepped wedge cluster randomised trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rasmussen, Charlotte Diana Nørregaard; Holtermann, Andreas; Jørgensen, Marie Birk; Ørberg, Anders; Mortensen, Ole Steen; Søgaard, Karen

    2016-08-01

    The aims of this study were to test whether a multi-faceted intervention effective for low back pain was effective for physical capacity, work demands, maladaptive pain behaviours, work ability and sickness absence due to low back pain. A stepped wedge cluster randomised, controlled trial with 594 nurses' aides was conducted. The intervention lasted 12 weeks and consisted of physical training (12 sessions), cognitive behavioural training (two sessions) and participatory ergonomics (five sessions). Occupational lifting, fear avoidance, physical exertion, muscle strength, support from management, work ability and sickness absence due to low back pain were measured every 3 months. Before and after the intervention we measured physical capacity, kinesiophobia and need for recovery. Linear mixed models adjusted for baseline values of the outcome were used to estimate the effect. Significant reduction in occupational lifting (-0.35 (95% confidence interval -0.61 to -0.08)), and improvement in two measures of fear avoidance ((-0.75 (95% confidence interval -1.05 to -0.45) and -0.45 (95% confidence interval -0.80 to -0.11)) were found for the intervention group compared to the control. There were no significant effects on physical exertion, muscle strength, support from management, work ability or sickness absence due to low back pain. After the intervention, significant increased physical capacity and improvements in kinesiophobia were found, but no change in need for recovery. CONCLUSIONS THE INTERVENTION WAS SIGNIFICANTLY EFFECTIVE FOR PHYSICAL WORK DEMANDS AND MALADAPTIVE PAIN BEHAVIOURS, BUT NOT FOR WORK ABILITY AND SICKNESS ABSENCE DUE TO LOW BACK PAIN TO IMPROVE WORK ABILITY OR REDUCE SICKNESS ABSENCE DUE TO LOW BACK PAIN MORE SPECIFIC INTERVENTIONS SHOULD PROBABLY BE DEVELOPED. © 2016 the Nordic Societies of Public Health.

  1. The CORE study protocol: a stepped wedge cluster randomised controlled trial to test a co-design technique to optimise psychosocial recovery outcomes for people affected by mental illness in the community mental health setting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palmer, Victoria J; Chondros, Patty; Piper, Donella; Callander, Rosemary; Weavell, Wayne; Godbee, Kali; Potiriadis, Maria; Richard, Lauralie; Densely, Konstancja; Herrman, Helen; Furler, John; Pierce, David; Schuster, Tibor; Iedema, Rick; Gunn, Jane

    2015-01-01

    Introduction User engagement in mental health service design is heralded as integral to health systems quality and performance, but does engagement improve health outcomes? This article describes the CORE study protocol, a novel stepped wedge cluster randomised controlled trial (SWCRCT) to improve psychosocial recovery outcomes for people with severe mental illness. Methods An SWCRCT with a nested process evaluation will be conducted over nearly 4 years in Victoria, Australia. 11 teams from four mental health service providers will be randomly allocated to one of three dates 9 months apart to start the intervention. The intervention, a modified version of Mental Health Experience Co-Design (MH ECO), will be delivered to 30 service users, 30 carers and 10 staff in each cluster. Outcome data will be collected at baseline (6 months) and at completion of each intervention wave. The primary outcome is improvement in recovery score using the 24-item Revised Recovery Assessment Scale for service users. Secondary outcomes are improvements to user and carer mental health and well-being using the shortened 8-item version of the WHOQOL Quality of Life scale (EUROHIS), changes to staff attitudes using the 19-item Staff Attitudes to Recovery Scale and recovery orientation of services using the 36-item Recovery Self Assessment Scale (provider version). Intervention and usual care periods will be compared using a linear mixed effects model for continuous outcomes and a generalised linear mixed effects model for binary outcomes. Participants will be analysed in the group that the cluster was assigned to at each time point. Ethics and dissemination The University of Melbourne, Human Research Ethics Committee (1340299.3) and the Federal and State Departments of Health Committees (Project 20/2014) granted ethics approval. Baseline data results will be reported in 2015 and outcomes data in 2017. Trial registration number Australian and New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry ACTRN

  2. Safety of Seasonal Malaria Chemoprevention (SMC with Sulfadoxine-Pyrimethamine plus Amodiaquine when Delivered to Children under 10 Years of Age by District Health Services in Senegal: Results from a Stepped-Wedge Cluster Randomized Trial.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J L NDiaye

    Full Text Available It is recommended that children aged 3 months to five years of age living in areas of seasonal transmission in the sub-Sahel should receive Seasonal Malaria Chemoprevention (SMC with sulfadoxine-pyrimethamine plus amodiaquine (SPAQ during the malaria transmission season. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the safety of SMC with SPAQ in children when delivered by community health workers in three districts in Senegal where SMC was introduced over three years, in children from 3 months of age to five years of age in the first year, then in children up to 10 years of age.A surveillance system was established to record all deaths and all malaria cases diagnosed at health facilities and a pharmacovigilance system was established to detect adverse drug reactions. Health posts were randomized to introduce SMC in a stepped wedge design. SMC with SPAQ was administered once per month from September to November, by nine health-posts in 2008, by 27 in 2009 and by 45 in 2010.After three years, 780,000 documented courses of SMC had been administered. High coverage was achieved. No serious adverse events attributable to the intervention were detected, despite a high level of surveillance.SMC is being implemented in countries of the sub-Sahel for children under 5 years of age, but in some areas the age distribution of cases of malaria may justify extending this age limit, as has been done in Senegal. Our results show that SMC is well tolerated in children under five and in older children. However, pharmacovigilance should be maintained where SMC is implemented and provision for strengthening national pharmacovigilance systems should be included in plans for SMC implementation.ClinicalTrials.gov NCT 00712374.

  3. Quasimetallic silicon micromachined photonic crystals

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Temelkuran, B.; Bayindir, Mehmet; Ozbay, E.; Kavanaugh, J. P.; Sigalas, M. M.; Tuttle, G.

    2001-01-01

    We report on fabrication of a layer-by-layer photonic crystal using highly doped silicon wafers processed by semiconductor micromachining techniques. The crystals, built using (100) silicon wafers, resulted in an upper stop band edge at 100 GHz. The transmission and defect characteristics of these structures were found to be analogous to metallic photonic crystals. We also investigated the effect of doping concentration on the defect characteristics. The experimental results agree well with predictions of the transfer matrix method simulations

  4. Micromachined silicon seismic accelerometer development

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Barron, C.C.; Fleming, J.G.; Montague, S. [and others

    1996-08-01

    Batch-fabricated silicon seismic transducers could revolutionize the discipline of seismic monitoring by providing inexpensive, easily deployable sensor arrays. Our ultimate goal is to fabricate seismic sensors with sensitivity and noise performance comparable to short-period seismometers in common use. We expect several phases of development will be required to accomplish that level of performance. Traditional silicon micromachining techniques are not ideally suited to the simultaneous fabrication of a large proof mass and soft suspension, such as one needs to achieve the extreme sensitivities required for seismic measurements. We have therefore developed a novel {open_quotes}mold{close_quotes} micromachining technology that promises to make larger proof masses (in the 1-10 mg range) possible. We have successfully integrated this micromolding capability with our surface-micromachining process, which enables the formation of soft suspension springs. Our calculations indicate that devices made in this new integrated technology will resolve down to at least sub-{mu}G signals, and may even approach the 10{sup -10} G/{radical}Hz acceleration levels found in the low-earth-noise model.

  5. Omega-X micromachining system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Miller, D.M.

    1978-01-01

    A micromachining tool system with X- and omega-axes is used to machine spherical, aspherical, and irregular surfaces with a maximum contour error of 100 nonometers (nm) and surface waviness of no more than 0.8 nm RMS. The omega axis, named for the angular measurement of the rotation of an eccentric mechanism supporting one end of a tool bar, enables the pulse increments of the tool toward the workpiece to be as little as 0 to 4.4 nm. A dedicated computer coordinates motion in the two axes to produce the workpiece contour. Inertia is reduced by reducing the mass pulsed toward the workpiece to about one-fifth of its former value. The tool system includes calibration instruments to calibrate the micromachining tool system. Backlash is reduced and flexing decreased by using a rotary table and servomotor to pulse the tool in the omega-axis instead of a ball screw mechanism. A thermally-stabilized spindle roates the workpiece and is driven by a motor not mounted on the micromachining tool base through a torque-smoothing pulley and vibrationless rotary coupling. Abbe offset errors are almost eliminated by tool setting and calibration at spindle center height. Tool contour and workpiece contour are gaged on the machine; this enables the source of machining errors to be determined more readily, because the workpiece is gaged before its shape can be changed by removal from the machine

  6. Resist materials for proton micromachining

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kan, J.A. van; Sanchez, J.L.; Xu, B.; Osipowicz, T.; Watt, F.

    1999-01-01

    The production of high aspect ratio microstructures is a potential growth area. The combination of deep X-ray lithography with electroforming and micromolding (i.e. LIGA) is one of the main techniques used to produce 3D microstructures. The new technique of proton micromachining employs focused MeV protons in a direct write process which is complementary to LIGA, e.g. micromachining with 2 MeV protons results in microstructures with a height of 63 μm and lateral sub-micrometer resolution in PMMA resist. The aim of this paper is to investigate the capabilities of proton micromachining as a lithographic technique. This involves the study of different types of resists. The dose distribution of high molecular weight PMMA is compared with three other types of resist: First the positive photo resist AZ P4620 will be discussed and then PMGI SF 23, which can be used as a deep UV, e-beam or X-ray resist. Finally SU-8, a new deep UV negative type of chemically amplified resist will be discussed. All these polymers are applied using the spin coating technique at thicknesses of between 1 and 36 μm

  7. Wedges of Anxiety

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hellström, Maria; Brandt, Eva

    2005-01-01

    The Heraclitian notion of a reality in constant flux seems to have settled even in the public consciousness. We are, to an ever-increasing extent, on the move; in motion between different places of abode, between domiciles and places of residence, between temporary addresses and provisory settlem...... cones of light, as the cut their way into the unknown, like wedges of anxiety...

  8. Service evaluation of an educational intervention to improve sexual health services in primary care implemented using a step-wedge design: analysis of chlamydia testing and diagnosis rate changes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Town, Katy; McNulty, Cliodna A M; Ricketts, Ellie J; Hartney, Thomas; Nardone, Anthony; Folkard, Kate A; Charlett, Andre; Dunbar, J Kevin

    2016-08-02

    Providing sexual health services in primary care is an essential step towards universal provision. However they are not offered consistently. We conducted a national pilot of an educational intervention to improve staff's skills and confidence to increase chlamydia testing rates and provide condoms with contraceptive information plus HIV testing according to national guidelines, known as 3Cs&HIV. The effectiveness of the pilot on chlamydia testing and diagnosis rates in general practice was evaluated. The pilot was implemented using a step-wedge design over three phases during 2013 and 2014 in England. The intervention combined educational workshops with posters, testing performance feedback and continuous support. Chlamydia testing and diagnosis rates in participating general practices during the control and intervention periods were compared adjusting for seasonal trends in chlamydia testing and differences in practice size. Intervention effect modification was assessed for the following general practice characteristics: chlamydia testing rate compared to national median, number of general practice staff employed, payment for chlamydia screening, practice urban/rurality classification, and proximity to sexual health clinics. The 460 participating practices conducted 26,021 tests in the control period and 18,797 tests during the intervention period. Intention-to-treat analysis showed no change in the unadjusted median tests and diagnoses per month per practice after receiving training: 2.7 vs 2.7; 0.1 vs 0.1. Multivariable negative binomial regression analysis found no significant change in overall testing or diagnoses post-intervention (incidence rate ratio (IRR) 1.01, 95 % confidence interval (CI) 0.96-1.07, P = 0.72; 0.98 CI 0.84-1.15, P = 0.84, respectively). Stratified analysis showed testing increased significantly in practices where payments were in place prior to the intervention (IRR 2.12 CI 1.41-3.18, P service improvement intervention to

  9. Biasing of Capacitive Micromachined Ultrasonic Transducers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caliano, Giosue; Matrone, Giulia; Savoia, Alessandro Stuart

    2017-02-01

    Capacitive micromachined ultrasonic transducers (CMUTs) represent an effective alternative to piezoelectric transducers for medical ultrasound imaging applications. They are microelectromechanical devices fabricated using silicon micromachining techniques, developed in the last two decades in many laboratories. The interest for this novel transducer technology relies on its full compatibility with standard integrated circuit technology that makes it possible to integrate on the same chip the transducers and the electronics, thus enabling the realization of extremely low-cost and high-performance devices, including both 1-D or 2-D arrays. Being capacitive transducers, CMUTs require a high bias voltage to be properly operated in pulse-echo imaging applications. The typical bias supply residual ripple of high-quality high-voltage (HV) generators is in the millivolt range, which is comparable with the amplitude of the received echo signals, and it is particularly difficult to minimize. The aim of this paper is to analyze the classical CMUT biasing circuits, highlighting the features of each one, and to propose two novel HV generator architectures optimized for CMUT biasing applications. The first circuit proposed is an ultralow-residual ripple (generator that uses an extremely stable sinusoidal power oscillator topology. The second circuit employs a commercially available integrated step-up converter characterized by a particularly efficient switching topology. The circuit is used to bias the CMUT by charging a buffer capacitor synchronously with the pulsing sequence, thus reducing the impact of the switching noise on the received echo signals. The small area of the circuit (about 1.5 cm 2 ) makes it possible to generate the bias voltage inside the probe, very close to the CMUT, making the proposed solution attractive for portable applications. Measurements and experiments are shown to demonstrate the effectiveness of the new approaches presented.

  10. Excimer laser micromachining for 3D microstructure

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Choi, Kyung Hyun; Meijer, J.; Masuzawa, Takahisa; Kim, Dae-Hyun

    2004-01-01

    A new 3D micromachining method, called Hole Area Modulation (HAM), has been introduced to enhance the current micromachining technology. In this method, information on the machining depth is converted to the sizes of holes on the mask. The machining is carried out with a simple 2D movement of the

  11. A Hybrid III stepped wedge cluster randomized trial testing an implementation strategy to facilitate the use of an evidence-based practice in VA Homeless Primary Care Treatment Programs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simmons, Molly M; Gabrielian, Sonya; Byrne, Thomas; McCullough, Megan B; Smith, Jeffery L; Taylor, Thom J; O'Toole, Tom P; Kane, Vincent; Yakovchenko, Vera; McInnes, D Keith; Smelson, David A

    2017-04-04

    Homeless veterans often have multiple health care and psychosocial needs, including assistance with access to housing and health care, as well as support for ongoing treatment engagement. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) developed specialized Homeless Patient Alignment Care Teams (HPACT) with the goal of offering an integrated, "one-stop program" to address housing and health care needs of homeless veterans. However, while 70% of HPACT's veteran enrollees have co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders, HPACT does not have a uniform, embedded treatment protocol for this subpopulation. One wraparound intervention designed to address the needs of homeless veterans with co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders which is suitable to be integrated into HPACT clinic sites is the evidence-based practice called Maintaining Independence and Sobriety through Systems Integration, Outreach, and Networking-Veterans Edition, or MISSION-Vet. Despite the promise of MISSION-Vet within HPACT clinics, implementation of an evidence-based intervention within a busy program like HPACT can be difficult. The current study is being undertaken to identify an appropriate implementation strategy for MISSION-Vet within HPACT. The study will test the implementation platform called Facilitation and compared to implementation as usual (IU). The aims of this study are as follows: (1) Compare the extent to which IU or Facilitation strategies achieve fidelity to the MISSION-Vet intervention as delivered by HPACT homeless provider staff. (2) Compare the effects of Facilitation and IU strategies on the National HPACT Performance Measures. (3) Compare the effects of IU and Facilitation on the permanent housing status. (4) Identify and describe key stakeholders' (patients, providers, staff) experiences with, and perspectives on, the barriers to, and facilitators of implementing MISSION. Type III Hybrid modified stepped wedge implementation comparing IU to Facilitation

  12. Evaluating the efficacy of the ‘Support for Life’ program for people with dementia and their families and carers’ to enable them to live well: A protocol for a cluster stepped wedge randomized controlled trial

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dianne Patricia Goeman

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Assistance provided to support people living with dementia and carers is highly valued by them. However current support systems in Australia are disjointed, inaccessible to all, poorly co-ordinated and focus on dysfunction rather than ability. Support workers are in short supply and there is little consistency in their roles. To address this large service gap and unmet need we have developed an evidence-based optimised model of holistic support for people with dementia and their carers and families. This article describes the ‘Support for Life’ model intervention. A stepped wedge cluster randomized controlled trial (SWCRCT will be conducted over three years across three Australian states. One hundred participants with dementia and/or their carers/family members will be randomly selected from community health centre client lists in each state to receive either the dementia ‘Support for Life’ intervention (Group A or routine care (Group B. Group A participants will have access to the intervention from year one. Group B participants will continue to receive usual care and will not be denied information on dementia or dementia services in year one. In year two Group B participants will have access to the intervention. A highly trained expert dementia support worker will provide the ‘Support for Life’ intervention, which is a flexible, individually tailored, holistic support that is relationship-centred, focused on enablement as opposed to dysfunction and facilitate participants continued engagement in their community and the workforce. Additionally, dementia education, information resources, advocacy and practical support to navigate and access dementia services and healthcare will be provided. The mode of support will include face to face, telephone and internet, interaction on an ‘as needed basis’ for 12 months. The primary hypothesis is that the intervention will improve the quality of life of people with dementia and the health

  13. The CORE study protocol: a stepped wedge cluster randomised controlled trial to test a co-design technique to optimise psychosocial recovery outcomes for people affected by mental illness in the community mental health setting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palmer, Victoria J; Chondros, Patty; Piper, Donella; Callander, Rosemary; Weavell, Wayne; Godbee, Kali; Potiriadis, Maria; Richard, Lauralie; Densely, Konstancja; Herrman, Helen; Furler, John; Pierce, David; Schuster, Tibor; Iedema, Rick; Gunn, Jane

    2015-03-24

    User engagement in mental health service design is heralded as integral to health systems quality and performance, but does engagement improve health outcomes? This article describes the CORE study protocol, a novel stepped wedge cluster randomised controlled trial (SWCRCT) to improve psychosocial recovery outcomes for people with severe mental illness. An SWCRCT with a nested process evaluation will be conducted over nearly 4 years in Victoria, Australia. 11 teams from four mental health service providers will be randomly allocated to one of three dates 9 months apart to start the intervention. The intervention, a modified version of Mental Health Experience Co-Design (MH ECO), will be delivered to 30 service users, 30 carers and 10 staff in each cluster. Outcome data will be collected at baseline (6 months) and at completion of each intervention wave. The primary outcome is improvement in recovery score using the 24-item Revised Recovery Assessment Scale for service users. Secondary outcomes are improvements to user and carer mental health and well-being using the shortened 8-item version of the WHOQOL Quality of Life scale (EUROHIS), changes to staff attitudes using the 19-item Staff Attitudes to Recovery Scale and recovery orientation of services using the 36-item Recovery Self Assessment Scale (provider version). Intervention and usual care periods will be compared using a linear mixed effects model for continuous outcomes and a generalised linear mixed effects model for binary outcomes. Participants will be analysed in the group that the cluster was assigned to at each time point. The University of Melbourne, Human Research Ethics Committee (1340299.3) and the Federal and State Departments of Health Committees (Project 20/2014) granted ethics approval. Baseline data results will be reported in 2015 and outcomes data in 2017. Australian and New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry ACTRN12614000457640. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For

  14. Evaluation of a structured goal planning and tailored follow-up programme in rehabilitation for patients with rheumatic diseases: protocol for a pragmatic, stepped-wedge cluster randomized trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-01-01

    Background Comprehensive rehabilitation, involving health professionals from various disciplines, is widely used as an adjunct to pharmacological and surgical treatment in people with rheumatic diseases. However, the evidence for the clinical- and cost-effectiveness of such interventions is limited, and the majority of those who receive rehabilitation are back to their initial health status six to 12 months after discharge. Methods/design To evaluate the goal attainment, health effects and cost-effectiveness of a new rehabilitation programme compared to current traditional rehabilitation programmes for people with rheumatic diseases, a stepped-wedge cluster randomized trial will be performed. Patients admitted for rehabilitation at six centres in the south-eastern part of Norway will be invited to participate. In the trial, six participating centres will switch from a control (current rehabilitation programme) to an intervention phase (the new rehabilitation programme) in a randomized order. Supported by recent research, the new programme will be a supplement to the existing programme at each centre, and will comprise four elements designed to enhance and support lifestyle changes introduced in the rehabilitation period: structured goal-planning, motivational interviewing, a self-help booklet and four follow-up telephone calls during the first five months following discharge. The primary outcome will be health-related quality of life and goal attainment, as measured by the Patient Generated Index directly before and after the rehabilitation stay, as well as after six and 12 months. Secondary outcomes will include self-reported pain, fatigue, a global assessment of disease activity and motivation for change (measured on 11-point numeric ratings scales), health-related quality of life as measured by the Short Form 36 Health Survey (SF-36) and utility assessed by the SF6D utility index. The main analysis will be on an intention to treat basis and will assess the

  15. Stepped-wedge cluster randomised controlled trial to assess the effectiveness of an electronic medication management system to reduce medication errors, adverse drug events and average length of stay at two paediatric hospitals: a study protocol.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Westbrook, J I; Li, L; Raban, M Z; Baysari, M T; Mumford, V; Prgomet, M; Georgiou, A; Kim, T; Lake, R; McCullagh, C; Dalla-Pozza, L; Karnon, J; O'Brien, T A; Ambler, G; Day, R; Cowell, C T; Gazarian, M; Worthington, R; Lehmann, C U; White, L; Barbaric, D; Gardo, A; Kelly, M; Kennedy, P

    2016-10-21

    Medication errors are the most frequent cause of preventable harm in hospitals. Medication management in paediatric patients is particularly complex and consequently potential for harms are greater than in adults. Electronic medication management (eMM) systems are heralded as a highly effective intervention to reduce adverse drug events (ADEs), yet internationally evidence of their effectiveness in paediatric populations is limited. This study will assess the effectiveness of an eMM system to reduce medication errors, ADEs and length of stay (LOS). The study will also investigate system impact on clinical work processes. A stepped-wedge cluster randomised controlled trial (SWCRCT) will measure changes pre-eMM and post-eMM system implementation in prescribing and medication administration error (MAE) rates, potential and actual ADEs, and average LOS. In stage 1, 8 wards within the first paediatric hospital will be randomised to receive the eMM system 1 week apart. In stage 2, the second paediatric hospital will randomise implementation of a modified eMM and outcomes will be assessed. Prescribing errors will be identified through record reviews, and MAEs through direct observation of nurses and record reviews. Actual and potential severity will be assigned. Outcomes will be assessed at the patient-level using mixed models, taking into account correlation of admissions within wards and multiple admissions for the same patient, with adjustment for potential confounders. Interviews and direct observation of clinicians will investigate the effects of the system on workflow. Data from site 1 will be used to develop improvements in the eMM and implemented at site 2, where the SWCRCT design will be repeated (stage 2). The research has been approved by the Human Research Ethics Committee of the Sydney Children's Hospitals Network and Macquarie University. Results will be reported through academic journals and seminar and conference presentations. Australian New Zealand

  16. Protocol for a cluster randomised stepped wedge trial assessing the impact of a community-level hygiene intervention and a water intervention using riverbank filtration technology on diarrhoeal prevalence in India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGuinness, Sarah L; O'Toole, Joanne E; Boving, Thomas B; Forbes, Andrew B; Sinclair, Martha; Gautam, Sumit K; Leder, Karin

    2017-03-17

    Diarrhoea is a leading cause of death globally, mostly occurring as a result of insufficient or unsafe water supplies, inadequate sanitation and poor hygiene. Our study aims to investigate the impact of a community-level hygiene education program and a water quality intervention using riverbank filtration (RBF) technology on diarrhoeal prevalence. We have designed a stepped wedge cluster randomised trial to estimate the health impacts of our intervention in 4 rural villages in Karnataka, India. At baseline, surveys will be conducted in all villages, and householders will receive hygiene education. New pipelines, water storage tanks and taps will then be installed at accessible locations in each village and untreated piped river water will be supplied. A subsequent survey will evaluate the impact of hygiene education combined with improved access to greater water volumes for hygiene and drinking purposes (improved water quantity). Villages will then be randomly ordered and RBF-treated water (improved water quality) will be sequentially introduced into the 4 villages in a stepwise manner, with administration of surveys at each time point. The primary outcome is a 7-day period prevalence of self-reported diarrhoea. Secondary outcomes include self-reported respiratory and skin infections, and reported changes in hygiene practices, household water usage and water supply preference. River, tank and tap water from each village, and stored water from a subset of households, will be sampled to assess microbial and chemical quality. Ethics approval was obtained from the Monash University Human Research Ethics Committee in Australia and The Energy and Resources Institute Institutional Ethics Committee in India. The results of the trial will be presented at conferences, published in peer-reviewed journals and disseminated to relevant stakeholders. This study is funded by an Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) project grant. ACTRN12616001286437; pre

  17. Navigating high-risk surgery: protocol for a multisite, stepped wedge, cluster-randomised trial of a question prompt list intervention to empower older adults to ask questions that inform treatment decisions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Lauren J; Rathouz, Paul J; Berlin, Ana; Brasel, Karen J; Mosenthal, Anne C; Finlayson, Emily; Cooper, Zara; Steffens, Nicole M; Jacobson, Nora; Buffington, Anne; Tucholka, Jennifer L; Zhao, Qianqian; Schwarze, Margaret L

    2017-05-29

    Older patients frequently undergo operations that carry high risk for postoperative complications and death. Poor preoperative communication between patients and surgeons can lead to uninformed decisions and result in unexpected outcomes, conflict between surgeons and patients, and treatment inconsistent with patient preferences. This article describes the protocol for a multisite, cluster-randomised trial that uses a stepped wedge design to test a patient-driven question prompt list (QPL) intervention aimed to improve preoperative decision making and inform postoperative expectations. This Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute-funded trial will be conducted at five academic medical centres in the USA. Study participants include surgeons who routinely perform vascular or oncological surgery, their patients and families. We aim to enrol 40 surgeons and 480 patients over 24 months. Patients age 65 or older who see a study-enrolled surgeon to discuss a vascular or oncological problem that could be treated with high-risk surgery will be enrolled at their clinic visit. Together with stakeholders, we developed a QPL intervention addressing preoperative communication needs of patients considering major surgery. Guided by the theories of self-determination and relational autonomy, this intervention is designed to increase patient activation. Patients will receive the QPL brochure and a letter from their surgeon encouraging its use. Using audio recordings of the outpatient surgical consultation, patient and family member questionnaires administered at three time points and retrospective chart review, we will compare the effectiveness of the QPL intervention to usual care with respect to the following primary outcomes: patient engagement in decision making, psychological well-being and post-treatment regret for patients and families, and interpersonal and intrapersonal conflict relating to treatment decisions and treatments received. Approvals have been granted by the

  18. Protocol of a cluster randomised stepped-wedge trial of behavioural interventions targeting amphetamine-type stimulant use and sexual risk among female entertainment and sex workers in Cambodia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Page, Kimberly; Stein, Ellen S; Carrico, Adam W; Evans, Jennifer L; Sokunny, Muth; Nil, Ean; Ngak, Song; Sophal, Chhit; McCulloch, Charles; Maher, Lisa

    2016-05-09

    HIV risk among female entertainment and sex workers (FESW) remains high and use of amphetamine-type stimulants (ATS) significantly increases this risk. We designed a cluster randomised stepped wedge trial (The Cambodia Integrated HIV and Drug Prevention Implementation (CIPI) study) to test sequentially delivered behavioural interventions targeting ATS use. The trial combines a 12-week Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) intervention with 4 weeks of cognitive-behavioural group aftercare (AC) among FESW who use ATS. The primary goal is to reduce ATS use and unprotected sex among FESW. The CCT+AC intervention is being implemented in 10 provinces where order of delivery was randomised. Outcome assessments (OEs) including biomarkers and self-reported measures of recent sexual and drug use behaviours are conducted prior to implementation, and at three 6-month intervals after completion. Consultation with multiple groups and stakeholders on implementation factors facilitated acceptance and operationalisation of the trial. Statistical power and sample size calculations were based on expected changes in ATS use and unprotected sex at the population level as well as within subjects. Ethical approvals were granted by the Cambodia National Ethics Committee; University of New Mexico; University of California, San Francisco; and FHI360. The trial is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov. Dissemination of process indicators during the multiyear trial is carried out through annual in-country Stakeholder Meetings. Provincial 'Close-Out' forums are held at the conclusion of data collection in each province. When analysis is completed, dissemination meetings will be held in Cambodia with stakeholders, including community-based discussion sessions, policy briefs and results published and presented in the HIV prevention scientific journals and conferences. CIPI is the first trial of an intervention to reduce ATS use and HIV risk among FESW in Cambodia. Will inform both CCT+AC implementation

  19. Effectiveness of the HuCare Quality Improvement Strategy on health-related quality of life in patients with cancer: study protocol of a stepped-wedge cluster randomised controlled trial (HuCare2 study).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caminiti, Caterina; Iezzi, Elisa; Passalacqua, Rodolfo

    2017-10-06

    Our group previously demonstrated the feasibility of the HuCare Quality Improvement Strategy (HQIS), aimed at integrating into practice six psychosocial interventions recommended by international guidelines. This trial will assess whether the introduction of the strategy in oncology wards improves patient's health-related quality of life (HRQoL). Multicentre, incomplete stepped-wedge cluster randomised controlled trial, conducted in three clusters of five centres each, in three equally spaced time epochs. The study also includes an initial epoch when none of the centres are exposed to the intervention, and a final epoch when all centres will have implemented the strategy. The intervention is applied at a cluster level, and assessed at an individual level with cross-sectional model. A total of 720 patients who received a cancer diagnosis in the previous 2 months and about to start medical treatment will be enrolled. The primary aim is to evaluate the effectiveness of the HQIS versus standard care in terms of improvement of at least one of two domains (emotional and social functions) of HRQoL using the EORTC QLQ-C30 (European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer Quality of Life Questionnaire-Core 30 items) questionnaire, at baseline and at 3 months. This outcome was chosen because patients with cancer generally exhibit low HRQoL, particularly at certain stages of care, and because it allows to assess the strategy's impact as perceived by patients themselves. The HQIS comprises three phases: (1) clinician training-to improve communication-relational skills and instruct on the project; (2) centre support-four on-site visits by experts of the project team, aimed to boost motivation, help with context analysis and identification of solutions; (3) implementation of Evidence-Based Medicine (EBM) recommendations at the centre. Ethics committee review approval has been obtained from the Ethics Committee of Parma. Results will be disseminated at conferences, and

  20. Clinical Application of Wedge Factor

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Choi, Dong Rak; Ahn, Yong Chan; Huh, Sueng Jae

    1995-01-01

    Purpose : In general. The wedge factors which are used clinical practices are ignored of dependency on field sizes and depths. In this present, we investigated systematically the depth and field size dependency to determine the absorbed dose more accurately. Methods : The wedge factors for each wedge filter were measured at various depth (depth of Dmax, 5cm, 10cm, and 15cm) and field sizes (5 X 5cm, 10 X 10cm, 15 X 15cm, 20 X 20 cm) by using 4-,6-, and 10-MV X rays. By convention, wedge factors are determined by taking the ratio of the central axis ionization readings when the wedge filter is in place to those of the open field in same field size and measurement depth. In this present work, we determined the wedge factors for 4-, 6-, and 10-MV X rays from Clinac 600C and 2100C linear accelerators (manufactured by Varian Associates, Inc., Palo Alto, CA). To confirm that the wedge was centered., measurements were done with the two possible wedge position and various collimator orientations. Results : The standard deviations of measured values are within 0.3% and the depth dependence of wedge factor is greater for the lower energies. Especially, the variation of wedge factor is no less than 5% for 4- and 6- MV X rays with more than 45 .deg. wedge filter. But there seems to be a small dependence on field size. Conclusion : The results of this study show a dependence on the point of measurement. There also seems to be a small dependence on field size. And so, we should consider the depth and field size dependence in determining the wedge factors. If one wedge factor were to be used for each wedge filter, it seems that the measurement for a 10cm X 10cm field size at a depth of 10cm would be a reasonable choice

  1. Micro-machined calorimetric biosensors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doktycz, Mitchel J.; Britton, Jr., Charles L.; Smith, Stephen F.; Oden, Patrick I.; Bryan, William L.; Moore, James A.; Thundat, Thomas G.; Warmack, Robert J.

    2002-01-01

    A method and apparatus are provided for detecting and monitoring micro-volumetric enthalpic changes caused by molecular reactions. Micro-machining techniques are used to create very small thermally isolated masses incorporating temperature-sensitive circuitry. The thermally isolated masses are provided with a molecular layer or coating, and the temperature-sensitive circuitry provides an indication when the molecules of the coating are involved in an enthalpic reaction. The thermally isolated masses may be provided singly or in arrays and, in the latter case, the molecular coatings may differ to provide qualitative and/or quantitative assays of a substance.

  2. Evaluation of wedge-shaped phantoms for assessment of scanner display as a part of quality control of scanner performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bergmann, H.; Havlik, E.

    1981-01-01

    Image manipulation in modern rectilinear scanners comprises background subtraction and contrast enhancement facilities. It has been the aim of this investigation to develop simple quality assurance methods suitable for checking the function of these features on a routine basis. Several types of phantoms have been investigated: an absorption step wedge, an emission step wedge and an emission continuous wedge. The absorption step wedge when used with a usual gamma-camera checking source gave the least satisfactory results. The emission step wedge is best suited for test procedures for background subtraction of the colour printer display and for contrast enhancement of the photo display, whereas the emission continuous wedge gave best results in testing the contrast enhancement of the colour printer display. An evaluation of the relative merits of the phantoms indicates that the emission step wedge is best suited for quality assurance tests. (author)

  3. Micro-machined resonator oscillator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koehler, Dale R.; Sniegowski, Jeffry J.; Bivens, Hugh M.; Wessendorf, Kurt O.

    1994-01-01

    A micro-miniature resonator-oscillator is disclosed. Due to the miniaturization of the resonator-oscillator, oscillation frequencies of one MHz and higher are utilized. A thickness-mode quartz resonator housed in a micro-machined silicon package and operated as a "telemetered sensor beacon" that is, a digital, self-powered, remote, parameter measuring-transmitter in the FM-band. The resonator design uses trapped energy principles and temperature dependence methodology through crystal orientation control, with operation in the 20-100 MHz range. High volume batch-processing manufacturing is utilized, with package and resonator assembly at the wafer level. Unique design features include squeeze-film damping for robust vibration and shock performance, capacitive coupling through micro-machined diaphragms allowing resonator excitation at the package exterior, circuit integration and extremely small (0.1 in. square) dimensioning. A family of micro-miniature sensor beacons is also disclosed with widespread applications as bio-medical sensors, vehicle status monitors and high-volume animal identification and health sensors. The sensor family allows measurement of temperatures, chemicals, acceleration and pressure. A microphone and clock realization is also available.

  4. Micromachining process – current situation and challenges

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lalakiya Meet Rajeshkumar

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The rapid progress in the scientific innovations and the hunt for the renewable energy increases the urge for producing the bio electronic products, solar cells, bio batteries, nano robots, MEMS, blood less surgical tools which can be possible with the aid of the micromachining. This article helps us to understand the evolution and the challenges faced by the micromachining process. Micro machining is an enabling technology that facilitates component miniaturization and improved performance characteristics. Growing demand for less weight, high accuracy, high precision, meagre lead time, reduced batch size, less human interference are the key drivers for the micromachining than the conventional machining process.

  5. Evaluating the Effectiveness of an Antimicrobial Stewardship Program on Reducing the Incidence Rate of Healthcare-Associated Clostridium difficile Infection: A Non-Randomized, Stepped Wedge, Single-Site, Observational Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DiDiodato, Giulio; McArthur, Leslie

    2016-01-01

    The incidence rate of healthcare-associated Clostridium difficile infection (HA-CDI) is estimated at 1 in 100 patients. Antibiotic exposure is the most consistently reported risk factor for HA-CDI. Strategies to reduce the risk of HA-CDI have focused on reducing antibiotic utilization. Prospective audit and feedback is a commonly used antimicrobial stewardship intervention (ASi). The impact of this ASi on risk of HA-CDI is equivocal. This study examines the effectiveness of a prospective audit and feedback ASi on reducing the risk of HA-CDI. Single-site, 339 bed community-hospital in Barrie, Ontario, Canada. Primary outcome is HA-CDI incidence rate. Daily prospective and audit ASi is the exposure variable. ASi implemented across 6 wards in a non-randomized, stepped wedge design. Criteria for ASi; any intravenous antibiotic use for ≥ 48 hrs, any oral fluoroquinolone or oral second generation cephalosporin use for ≥ 48 hrs, or any antimicrobial use for ≥ 5 days. HA-CDI cases and model covariates were aggregated by ward, year and month starting September 2008 and ending February 2016. Multi-level mixed effect negative binomial regression analysis was used to model the primary outcome, with intercept and slope coefficients for ward-level random effects estimated. Other covariates tested for inclusion in the final model were derived from previously published risk factors. Deviance residuals were used to assess the model's goodness-of-fit. The dataset included 486 observation periods, of which 350 were control periods and 136 were intervention periods. After accounting for all other model covariates, the estimated overall ASi incidence rate ratio (IRR) was 0.48 (95% 0.30, 0.79). The ASi effect was independent of antimicrobial utilization. The ASi did not seem to reduce the risk of Clostridium difficile infection on the surgery wards (IRR 0.87, 95% CI 0.45, 1.69) compared to the medicine wards (IRR 0.42, 95% CI 0.28, 0.63). The ward-level burden of Clostridium

  6. Evaluating the Effectiveness of an Antimicrobial Stewardship Program on Reducing the Incidence Rate of Healthcare-Associated Clostridium difficile Infection: A Non-Randomized, Stepped Wedge, Single-Site, Observational Study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giulio DiDiodato

    Full Text Available The incidence rate of healthcare-associated Clostridium difficile infection (HA-CDI is estimated at 1 in 100 patients. Antibiotic exposure is the most consistently reported risk factor for HA-CDI. Strategies to reduce the risk of HA-CDI have focused on reducing antibiotic utilization. Prospective audit and feedback is a commonly used antimicrobial stewardship intervention (ASi. The impact of this ASi on risk of HA-CDI is equivocal. This study examines the effectiveness of a prospective audit and feedback ASi on reducing the risk of HA-CDI.Single-site, 339 bed community-hospital in Barrie, Ontario, Canada. Primary outcome is HA-CDI incidence rate. Daily prospective and audit ASi is the exposure variable. ASi implemented across 6 wards in a non-randomized, stepped wedge design. Criteria for ASi; any intravenous antibiotic use for ≥ 48 hrs, any oral fluoroquinolone or oral second generation cephalosporin use for ≥ 48 hrs, or any antimicrobial use for ≥ 5 days. HA-CDI cases and model covariates were aggregated by ward, year and month starting September 2008 and ending February 2016. Multi-level mixed effect negative binomial regression analysis was used to model the primary outcome, with intercept and slope coefficients for ward-level random effects estimated. Other covariates tested for inclusion in the final model were derived from previously published risk factors. Deviance residuals were used to assess the model's goodness-of-fit.The dataset included 486 observation periods, of which 350 were control periods and 136 were intervention periods. After accounting for all other model covariates, the estimated overall ASi incidence rate ratio (IRR was 0.48 (95% 0.30, 0.79. The ASi effect was independent of antimicrobial utilization. The ASi did not seem to reduce the risk of Clostridium difficile infection on the surgery wards (IRR 0.87, 95% CI 0.45, 1.69 compared to the medicine wards (IRR 0.42, 95% CI 0.28, 0.63. The ward-level burden of

  7. Micromachined Integrated Transducers for Ultrasound Imaging

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    la Cour, Mette Funding

    The purpose of this project is to develop capacitive micromachined ultrasonic transducers (CMUTs) for medical imaging. Medical ultrasound transducers used today are fabricated using piezoelectric materials and bulk processing. To fabricate transducers capable of delivering a higher imaging...

  8. The micromachined logo of Atomki

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rajta, I.; Szilasi, S.Z.

    2006-01-01

    Complete text of publication follows. Proton Beam Micromachining, also known as P-beam Writing, is a direct write 3- dimensional lithographic technique. Conventional resist types are PMMA (polymethylmethacrylate), and SU-8 (of MicroChem Corp.); they are positive and negative resists, respectively. In this work we used SU-8, the most common negative resist material. SU-8 was spun on a flat surface, typically Silicon or glass. A direct write proton beam was scanned over an arbitary structure (the Atomki logo can be replaced by any other structure), which produces chain scissioning in the polymer. Post exposure bake (PEB) is usually needed in case of conventional optical lithography, but using protons this bake is done in situ as the ions heat up the sample in vacuum. Subsequently chemical etching takes place, the solvent is available at MicroChem Corp. The schematic diagram of the above described micromachining process is shown on Fig. 1. The irradiation requires a scanning proton microbeam system equipped with suitable beam scanning and blanking facilities. This is available in the Institute, our setup has been upgraded from doublet to triplet focusing system (Oxford Microbeams Ltd.). For scanning we use a DIO card (PCI-6731 of National Instruments), and the IonScan software [1]. Sample preparation was carried out at our 'semi clean' room. This is also where chemical development of the samples and the optical microscopy have been done too. A Zeiss Axio Imager microscope is available (equipped with 5 objective lenses, 4 different contrast methods, transmitted or reflected light illumination). Fig. 2. shows a typical example of the Atomki logo. This is a bright field image, a number of different nice and colourful images can be produced with the other contrast techniques (for more images see the Institute website: http://www.atomki.hu/ ). (author)

  9. Optical micro-metrology of structured surfaces micro-machined by jet-ECM

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Quagliotti, Danilo; Tosello, Guido; Islam, Aminul

    2015-01-01

    A procedure for statistical analysis and uncertainty evaluation is presented with regards to measurements of step height and surface texture. Measurements have been performed with a focus-variation microscope over jet electrochemical micro-machined surfaces. Traceability has been achieved using a...

  10. Numerical Study on Critical Wedge Angle of Cellular Detonation Reflections

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gang, Wang; Kai-Xin, Liu; De-Liang, Zhang

    2010-01-01

    The critical wedge angle (CWA) for the transition from regular reflection (RR) to Mach reflection (MR) of a cellular detonation wave is studied numerically by an improved space-time conservation element and solution element method together with a two-step chemical reaction model. The accuracy of that numerical way is verified by simulating cellular detonation reflections at a 19.3° wedge. The planar and cellular detonation reflections over 45°–55° wedges are also simulated. When the cellular detonation wave is over a 50° wedge, numerical results show a new phenomenon that RR and MR occur alternately. The transition process between RR and MR is investigated with the local pressure contours. Numerical analysis shows that the cellular structure is the essential reason for the new phenomenon and the CWA of detonation reflection is not a certain angle but an angle range. (fundamental areas of phenomenology(including applications))

  11. Comparison of dosimetric methods for virtual wedge analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bailey, M.; Nelson, V.; Collins, O.; West, M.; Holloway, L.; Rajapaske, S.; Arts, J.; Varas, J.; Cho, G.; Hill, R.

    2004-01-01

    Full text: The Siemens Virtual Wedge (Concord, USA) creates wedged beam profile by moving a single collimator jaw across the specified field size whilst varying the dose rate and jaw speed for use in the delivery of radiotherapy treatments. The measurement of the dosimetric characteristics of the Siemens Virtual Wedge poses significant challenges to medical physicists. This study investigates several different methods for measuring and analysing the virtual wedge for data collection for treatment planning systems and ongoing quality assurance. The beam profiles of the Virtual Wedge (VW) were compared using several different dosimetric methods. Open field profiles were measured with Kodak X-Omat V (Rochester, NY, USA) radiographic film and compared with measurements made using the Sun Nuclear Profiler with a Motorized Drive Assembly (MDA) (Melbourne, FL, USA) and the Scanditronix Wellhofer CC13 ionisation chamber and 24 ion Chamber Array (CA24) (Schwarzenbruck, Germany). The resolution of each dosimetric method for open field profiles was determined. The Virtual Wedge profiles were measured with radiographic film the Profiler and the Scanditronix Wellhofer CA 24 ion Chamber Array at 5 different depths. The ease of setup, time taken, analysis and accuracy of measurement were all evaluated to determine the method that would be both appropriate and practical for routine quality assurance of the Virtual Wedge. The open field profiles agreed within ±2% or 2mm for all dosimetric methods. The accuracy of the Profiler and CA24 are limited to half of the step size selected for each of these detectors. For the VW measurements a step size of 2mm was selected for the Profiler and the CA24. The VW profiles for all dosimetric methods agreed within ±2% or 2mm for the main wedged section of the profile. The toe and heel ends of the wedges showed the significant discrepancies dependent upon the dosimetry method used, up to 7% for the toe end with the CA24. The dosimetry of the

  12. Demonstration of superconducting micromachined cavities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brecht, T., E-mail: teresa.brecht@yale.edu; Reagor, M.; Chu, Y.; Pfaff, W.; Wang, C.; Frunzio, L.; Devoret, M. H.; Schoelkopf, R. J. [Department of Applied Physics, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut 06511 (United States)

    2015-11-09

    Superconducting enclosures will be key components of scalable quantum computing devices based on circuit quantum electrodynamics. Within a densely integrated device, they can protect qubits from noise and serve as quantum memory units. Whether constructed by machining bulk pieces of metal or microfabricating wafers, 3D enclosures are typically assembled from two or more parts. The resulting seams potentially dissipate crossing currents and limit performance. In this letter, we present measured quality factors of superconducting cavity resonators of several materials, dimensions, and seam locations. We observe that superconducting indium can be a low-loss RF conductor and form low-loss seams. Leveraging this, we create a superconducting micromachined resonator with indium that has a quality factor of two million, despite a greatly reduced mode volume. Inter-layer coupling to this type of resonator is achieved by an aperture located under a planar transmission line. The described techniques demonstrate a proof-of-principle for multilayer microwave integrated quantum circuits for scalable quantum computing.

  13. Chevron closing base wedge bunionectomy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruyn, J M

    1993-01-01

    The Chevron-base wedge Association for Osteosynthesis fixated bunionectomy provides a stable, aggressive correction of the severe hallux abducto valgus deformity. It is intended for the bunion requiring a double osteotomy in order to adequately reduce both intermetatarsal and proximal articular facet angle with minimal shortening and elevation. This article presents the rationale for the procedure, technique, and a 4-year follow-up of six patients with eight Chevron-base wedge bunionectomies.

  14. Cryogenically assisted abrasive jet micromachining of polymers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Getu, H; Papini, M; Spelt, J K

    2008-01-01

    The abrasive jet micromachining (AJM) of elastomers and polymers such as polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS), acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) and polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) for use in micro-fluidic devices was found to be very slow or impossible at room temperature. To enhance the material removal rate in such materials, a stream of liquid nitrogen (LN 2 ) was injected into the abrasive jet, cooling the target to cryogenic temperatures. Erosion rate measurements on the three polymeric materials (PDMS, ABS and PTFE) with and without the use of LN 2 were compared along with the profiles of micromachined channels and holes. It was found that the use of LN 2 cooling caused brittle erosion in PDMS, allowing it to be micromachined successfully. An erosion rate increase was also observed in PTFE and ABS at high and intermediate impact angles. The use of LN 2 also was found to reduce particle embedding

  15. Phase Space Exchange in Thick Wedge Absorbers

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Neuffer, David [Fermi National Accelerator Lab. (FNAL), Batavia, IL (United States)

    2017-01-01

    The problem of phase space exchange in wedge absorbers with ionization cooling is discussed. The wedge absorber exchanges transverse and longitudinal phase space by introducing a position-dependent energy loss. In this paper we note that the wedges used with ionization cooling are relatively thick, so that single wedges cause relatively large changes in beam phase space. Calculation methods adapted to such “thick wedge” cases are presented, and beam phase-space transformations through such wedges are discussed.

  16. Forces in Motzkin paths in a wedge

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Janse van Rensburg, E J

    2006-01-01

    Entropic forces in models of Motzkin paths in a wedge geometry are considered as models of forces in polymers in confined geometries. A Motzkin path in the square lattice is a path from the origin to a point in the line Y = X while it never visits sites below this line, and it is constrained to give unit length steps only in the north and east directions and steps of length √2 in the north-east direction. Motzkin path models may be generalized to ensembles of NE-oriented paths above the line Y = rX, where r > 0 is an irrational number. These are paths giving east, north and north-east steps from the origin in the square lattice, and confined to the r-wedge formed by the Y-axis and the line Y = rX. The generating function g r of these paths is not known, but if r > 1, then I determine its radius of convergence to be t r = min (r-1)/r≤y≤r/(r+1) [y y (1-r(1-y)) 1-r(1-y) (r(1-y)-y) r(1-y)-y ] and if r is an element of (0, 1), then t r = 1/3. The entropic force the path exerts on the line Y rX may be computed from this. An asymptotic expression for the force for large values of r is given by F(r) = log(2r)/r 2 - (1+2log(2r))/2r 3 + O (log(2r)/r 4 ). In terms of the vertex angle α of the r-wedge, the moment of the force about the origin has leading terms F(α) log(2/α) - (α/2)(1+2log(2/α)) + O(α 2 log(2/α)) as α → 0 + and F(α) = 0 if α is element of [π/4, π/2]. Moreover, numerical integration of the force shows that the total work done by closing the wedge is 1.085 07... lattice units. An alternative ensemble of NE-oriented paths may be defined by slightly changing the generating function g r . In this model, it is possible to determine closed-form expressions for the limiting free energy and the force. The leading term in an asymptotic expansions for this force agrees with the leading term in the asymptotic expansion of the above model, and the subleading term only differs by a factor of 2

  17. The Development of Micromachined Gyroscope Structure and Circuitry Technology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dunzhu Xia

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available This review surveys micromachined gyroscope structure and circuitry technology. The principle of micromachined gyroscopes is first introduced. Then, different kinds of MEMS gyroscope structures, materials and fabrication technologies are illustrated. Micromachined gyroscopes are mainly categorized into micromachined vibrating gyroscopes (MVGs, piezoelectric vibrating gyroscopes (PVGs, surface acoustic wave (SAW gyroscopes, bulk acoustic wave (BAW gyroscopes, micromachined electrostatically suspended gyroscopes (MESGs, magnetically suspended gyroscopes (MSGs, micro fiber optic gyroscopes (MFOGs, micro fluid gyroscopes (MFGs, micro atom gyroscopes (MAGs, and special micromachined gyroscopes. Next, the control electronics of micromachined gyroscopes are analyzed. The control circuits are categorized into typical circuitry and special circuitry technologies. The typical circuitry technologies include typical analog circuitry and digital circuitry, while the special circuitry consists of sigma delta, mode matching, temperature/quadrature compensation and novel special technologies. Finally, the characteristics of various typical gyroscopes and their development tendency are discussed and investigated in detail.

  18. Clinical implementation of enhanced dynamic wedge

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Klein, Eric E.; Zhu Xiaorong; Low, Daniel A.; Drzymala, Robert E.; Harms, William B.; Purdy, James A.

    1996-01-01

    Purpose/Objective: Our clinic has been using dynamic wedge since 1993. We appreciate the customized wedge shaped distributions (independent of field size) and the positive aspects of replacing filters with dynamic jaw motion. Varian recently introduced enhanced dynamic wedge (EDW) software. The EDW can be delivered over; a 30 cm field, asymmetric fields (in both wedged and non-wedged directions), and additional wedge angles (10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 45, 60). The EDW software creates customized segmented treatment tables (STTs) for the desired wedge angle and field size. The STT is created from a 'golden' fluence profile of 60 deg. over 30 cm. The wedge STT is derived using ratio-of-tangents and the truncated field segment extracted from the 'golden' table. A review of our dosimetric studies will be presented as well as a discussion of clinical implementation issues including treatment planning and quality assurance. Methods and Materials: We tested a set of angle and field size combinations chosen to encompass clinical needs. The wedge factor (WF) was measured using an ionization chamber along central axis for symmetric fields ranging from 4 to 20 cm, and asymmetric fields to 30 cm. The non-wedged field dimension was found to be inconsequential. An algorithm was developed to predict the wedge factor for any angle and field dimension. Isodoses were measured with film and used for profile evaluation and treatment planning development. The 'golden' fluence table was used to create a universal 60 deg. 'physical' wedge for planning. The universal wedge is combined with an open field (to derive intermediate wedge angles) and blocked according to the treatment field segment. A quality assurance program was developed that relies on multi-point diode measurements. Results: We found the WF is a function of wedge angle and field settings of the final sweep position. There is a nearly linear dependence of WF vs. field size thus allowing a minimal WF table. This eliminates a

  19. FY 1998 report on the R and D of micromachine technology. R and D of micromachine technology; 1998 nendo micromachine gijutsu no kenkyu kaihatsu seika hokokusho

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2000-03-01

    In the comprehensive investigational study of micromachine technology, the paper aims at clarifying the improvement of functional devices and the future development of micromachine technology for establishment of the technology needed to realize a micromachine system composing of small-functional elements for conducting diagnosis/cure/repair, movement and independent work in small portions in living organism, disaster site, etc. and a medical-use micromachine system to analyze/react on a trace of liquid. In this fiscal year, the following were carried out: 1) study of micromachine systems, 2) study of a medical-use micromachine system to analyze/react on a trace liquid, and 3) comprehensive investigational study. In 1), studies were made toward the minuteness and improvement of micro laser catheter and micro tactile sensor catheter as functional devices which become the main components of micro catheter for cerebrovascular diagnosis/therapy use and toward the minuteness and improvement of disaster relief use micromachine system. In 2), study was made of element technology of a micro-machine system having functions of sampling/analysis/reaction of a trace of liquid. (NEDO)

  20. Portal dosimetry in wedged beams

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Spreeuw, Hanno; Rozendaal, Roel; Camargo, Priscilla; Mans, Anton; Wendling, Markus; Olaciregui-Ruiz, Igor; Sonke, Jan-Jakob; van Herk, Marcel; Mijnheer, Ben

    2015-01-01

    Portal dosimetry using electronic portal imaging devices (EPIDs) is often applied to verify high-energy photon beam treatments. Due to the change in photon energy spectrum, the resulting dose values are, however, not very accurate in the case of wedged beams if the pixel-to-dose conversion for the

  1. Calibration of the Wedge Prism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charles B. Briscoe

    1957-01-01

    Since the introduction of plotless cruising in this country by Grosenbaugh and the later suggestion of using a wedge prism as an angle gauge by Bruce this method of determining basal area has been widely adopted in the South. One of the factors contributing to the occasionally unsatisfactory results obtained is failure to calibrate the prism used. As noted by Bruce the...

  2. Discretely tunable micromachined injection-locked lasers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cai, H; Yu, M B; Lo, G Q; Kwong, D L; Zhang, X M; Liu, A Q; Liu, B

    2010-01-01

    This paper reports a micromachined injection-locked laser (ILL) to provide tunable discrete wavelengths. It utilizes a non-continuously tunable laser as the master to lock a Fabry–Pérot semiconductor laser chip. Both lasers are integrated into a deep-etched silicon chip with dimensions of 3 mm × 3 mm × 0.8 mm. Based on the experimental results, significant improvements in the optical power and spectral purity have been achieved in the fully locked state, and optical hysteresis and bistability have also been observed in response to the changes of the output wavelength and optical power of the master laser. As a whole system, the micromachined ILL is able to provide single mode, discrete wavelength tuning, high power and direct modulation with small size and single-chip solution, making it promising for advanced optical communications such as wavelength division multiplexing optical access networks.

  3. A silicon micromachined resonant pressure sensor

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tang Zhangyang; Fan Shangchun; Cai Chenguang

    2009-01-01

    This paper describes the design, fabrication and test of a silicon micromachined resonant pressure sensor. A square membrane and a doubly clamped resonant beam constitute a compound structure. The former senses the pressure directly, while the latter changes its resonant frequency according to deformation of the membrane. The final output relation between the resonant frequency and the applied pressure is deducted according to the structure mechanical properties. Sensors are fabricated by micromachining technology, and then sealed in vaccum. These sensors are tested by open-loop and close-loop system designed on purpose. The experiment results demonstrate that the sensor has a sensitivity of 49.8Hz/kPa and repeatability of 0.08%.

  4. Model Design of Piezoelectric Micromachined Modal Gyroscope

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaojun Hu

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper reports a novel kind of solid-state microgyroscope, which is called piezoelectric micromachined modal gyroscope (PMMG. PMMG has large stiffness and robust resistance to shake and strike because there is no evident mass-spring component in its structure. This work focused on quantitative optimization of the gyroscope, which is still blank for such gyroscope. The modal analysis by the finite element method (FEM was firstly conducted. A set of quantitative indicators were developed to optimize the operation mode. By FEM, the harmonic analysis was conducted to find the way to efficiently actuate the operational mode needed. The optimal configuration of driving electrodes was obtained. At last, the Coriolis analysis was conducted to show the relation between angular velocity and differential output voltage by the Coriolis force under working condition. The results obtained in this paper provide theoretical basis for realizing this novel kind of micromachined gyroscope.

  5. Micro benchtop optics by bulk silicon micromachining

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Abraham P.; Pocha, Michael D.; McConaghy, Charles F.; Deri, Robert J.

    2000-01-01

    Micromachining of bulk silicon utilizing the parallel etching characteristics of bulk silicon and integrating the parallel etch planes of silicon with silicon wafer bonding and impurity doping, enables the fabrication of on-chip optics with in situ aligned etched grooves for optical fibers, micro-lenses, photodiodes, and laser diodes. Other optical components that can be microfabricated and integrated include semi-transparent beam splitters, micro-optical scanners, pinholes, optical gratings, micro-optical filters, etc. Micromachining of bulk silicon utilizing the parallel etching characteristics thereof can be utilized to develop miniaturization of bio-instrumentation such as wavelength monitoring by fluorescence spectrometers, and other miniaturized optical systems such as Fabry-Perot interferometry for filtering of wavelengths, tunable cavity lasers, micro-holography modules, and wavelength splitters for optical communication systems.

  6. Silicon Micromachines for Science and Technology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bishop, David J.

    2002-01-01

    The era of silicon micromechanics is upon us. In areas as diverse as telecommunications, automotive, aerospace, chemistry, entertainment and basic science, the ability to build microscopic machines from silicon is having a revolutionary impact. In my talk, I will discuss what micromachines are, how they are built and show examples of how they will have a revolutionary impact in many areas of science as well as technology.

  7. Micromachined Parts Advance Medicine, Astrophysics, and More

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-01-01

    In the mid-1990s, Marshall Space Flight Center awarded two SBIR contracts to Potomac Photonics, now based in Baltimore, for the development of computerized workstations capable of mass-producing tiny, intricate, diffractive optical elements. While the company has since discontinued the workstations, those contracts set the stage for Potomac Photonics to be a leader in the micromachining industry, where NASA remains one of its clients.

  8. Micromachined Piezoelectric Actuators for Cryogenic Adaptive Optics, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — TRS Technologies proposes micromachined single crystal piezoelectric actuator arrays to enable ultra-large stroke, high precision shape control for large aperture,...

  9. Modeling and identification of induction micromachines in microelectromechanical systems applications

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lyshevski, S.E. [Purdue University at Indianapolis (United States). Dept. of Electrical and Computer Engineering

    2002-11-01

    Microelectromechanical systems (MEMS), which integrate motion microstructures, radiating energy microdevices, controlling and signal processing integrated circuits (ICs), are widely used. Rotational and translational electromagnetic based micromachines are used in MEMS as actuators and sensors. Brushless high performance micromachines are the preferable choice in different MEMS applications, and therefore, synchronous and induction micromachines are the best candidates. Affordability, good performance characteristics (efficiency, controllability, robustness, reliability, power and torque densities etc.) and expanded operating envelopes result in a strong interest in the application of induction micromachines. In addition, induction micromachines can be easily fabricated using surface micromachining and high aspect ratio fabrication technologies. Thus, it is anticipated that induction micromachines, controlled using different control algorithms implemented using ICs, will be widely used in MEMS. Controllers can be implemented using specifically designed ICs to attain superior performance, maximize efficiency and controllability, minimize losses and electromagnetic interference, reduce noise and vibration, etc. In order to design controllers, the induction micromachine must be modeled, and its mathematical model parameters must be identified. Using microelectromechanics, nonlinear mathematical models are derived. This paper illustrates the application of nonlinear identification methods as applied to identify the unknown parameters of three phase induction micromachines. Two identification methods are studied. In particular, nonlinear error mapping technique and least squares identification are researched. Analytical and numerical results, as well as practical capabilities and effectiveness, are illustrated, identifying the unknown parameters of a three phase brushless induction micromotor. Experimental results fully support the identification methods. (author)

  10. Demonstration of Robust Micromachined Jet Technology and its Application to Realistic Flow Control Problems

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Allen, Mark

    2000-01-01

    .... Our approaches include: (1) the development of suitable micromachined synthetic jets (microjets) as actuators, which obviate the need to physically extend micromachined structures into an external flow...

  11. Micromachined capacitive ultrasonic immersion transducer array

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jin, Xuecheng

    Capacitive micromachined ultrasonic transducers (cMUTs) have emerged as an attractive alternative to conventional piezoelectric ultrasonic transducers. They offer performance advantages of wide bandwidth and sensitivity that have heretofore been attainable. In addition, micromachining technology, which has benefited from the fast-growing microelectronics industry, enables cMUT array fabrication and electronics integration. This thesis describes the design and fabrication of micromachined capacitive ultrasonic immersion transducer arrays. The basic transducer electrical equivalent circuit is derived from Mason's theory. The effects of Lamb waves and Stoneley waves on cross coupling and acoustic losses are discussed. Electrical parasitics such as series resistance and shunt capacitance are also included in the model of the transducer. Transducer fabrication technology is systematically studied. Device dimension control in both vertical and horizontal directions, process alternatives and variations in membrane formation, via etch and cavity sealing, and metalization as well as their impact on transducer performance are summarized. Both 64 and 128 element 1-D array transducers are fabricated. Transducers are characterized in terms of electrical input impedance, bandwidth, sensitivity, dynamic range, impulse response and angular response, and their performance is compared with theoretical simulation. Various schemes for cross coupling reduction is analyzed, implemented, and verified with both experiments and theory. Preliminary results of immersion imaging are presented using 64 elements 1-D array transducers for active source imaging.

  12. Design of Surface micromachined Compliant MEMS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bradley, Joe Anthony [Iowa State Univ., Ames, IA (United States)

    2001-01-01

    The consideration of compliant mechanisms as Microelectromechanical Systems (MEMS) is the focus of this research endeavor. MEMS are micron to millimeter devices that combine electrical, mechanical, and information processing capabilities on the same device. These MEMS need some mechanical motion or parts that move relative to each other. This relative motion, using multiple parts, is not desired because of the assembly requirement and the friction introduced. Compliant devices limits or eliminates friction and the need for multi-component assembly. Compliant devices improve designs by creating single piece mechanisms. The purpose of this research is to validate surface micromachining as a viable fabrication process for compliant MEMS designs. Specifically, this research has sought to fabricate a micro-compliant gripper and a micro-compliant clamp to illustrate the process. While other researchers have created compliant MEMS, most have used comb-drive actuation methods and bulk micromachining processes. This research focuses on fully-compliant devices that use device flexibility for motion and actuation. Validation of these compliant MEMS is achieved by structural optimization of device design and functional performance testing. This research contributes to the ongoing research in MEMS by evaluating the potential of using surface micromachining as a process for fabricating compliant micro-mechanisms.

  13. Design of Surface Micromachined Compliant MEMS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bradley, Joe Anthony [Iowa State Univ., Ames, IA (United States)

    2002-12-31

    The consideration of compliant mechanisms as Microelectromechanical Systems (MEMS) is the focus of this research endeavor. MEMS are micron to millimeter devices that combine electrical, mechanical, and information processing capabilities on the same device. These MEMS need some mechanical motion or parts that move relative to each other. This relative motion, using multiple parts, is not desired because of the assembly requirement and the friction introduced. Compliant devices limits or eliminates friction and the need for multi-component assembly. Compliant devices improve designs by creating single piece mechanisms. The purpose of this research is to validate surface micromachining as a viable fabrication process for compliant MEMS designs. Specifically, this research has sought to fabricate a micro-compliant gripper and a micro-compliant clamp to illustrate the process. While other researchers have created compliant MEMs, most have used comb-drive actuation methods and bulk micromachining processes. This research focused on fully-compliant devices that use device flexibility for motion and actuation. Validation of these compliant MEMS is achieved by structural optimization of device design and functional performance testing. This research contributes to the ongoing research in MEMS by evaluating the potential of using surface micromachining as a process for fabricating compliant micro-mechanisms.

  14. Advanced technology trend survey of micromachines in Europe; Oshu ni okeru micromachine sentan gijutsu doko chosa

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1996-02-01

    In this research survey, the development trend of micromachine technology in Europe was surveyed, development level of micromachine technology of European companies was grasped, and practical application fields of their target were investigated. Technology development level of private companies in Japan`s national projects and practical application fields of Japan`s target were arranged. Trends of micromachine technology development are compared between Japanese companies and European companies. Among micromachine technology development projects in Europe, ``8520 MUST`` is a part of the ESPRIT Project. About 40,000 companies among about 170,000 companies in whole Europe are relating to the MUST Project. The main fields include the manufacturing technology, process control of machines, technology of safety, sensor technology in environmental fields, and automotive technology. The marketing fields of application include the automobile, military technology, home automation, industrial process, medical technology, environmental technology, and games. The results can be compared with the direction of research and development in Japan. 22 figs., 8 tabs.

  15. Improved field abutment-wedge design for 6-MV x-rays

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nyerick, C.E.; Steadham, R.E.

    1989-01-01

    This paper presents an improved abutment wedge for matching large photon fields. The wedge is used with a 6-MV Linac accelerator and generates a 5-cm pseudopenumbra at the 50% relative dose juncture. The features allow treatment of fields up to 40 cm long in any fractional step of increment, simultaneous generation of two wide penumbrae or one wide and one sharp penumbra, and attachment of the device downstream of standard beam-shaping accessories in any 90 degrees angular orientation

  16. Optofluidic Microlasers based on Femtosecond Micromachining Technology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simoni F.

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available We present the different optofluidic lasers which have been realized using the Femtosecond Micromachining technique to fabricate the monolithic optofluidic structures in glass chips. We show how the great flexibility of this 3D technique allows getting different kind of optical cavities. The most recent devices fabricated by this technique as ring shaped and Fabry-Perot resonators show excellent emission performances.We also point out how the addition of the inkjet printing technique provides further opportunities in realizing optofluidic chips.

  17. Acceleration sensitivity of micromachined pressure sensors

    Science.gov (United States)

    August, Richard; Maudie, Theresa; Miller, Todd F.; Thompson, Erik

    1999-08-01

    Pressure sensors serve a variety of automotive applications, some which may experience high levels of acceleration such as tire pressure monitoring. To design pressure sensors for high acceleration environments it is important to understand their sensitivity to acceleration especially if thick encapsulation layers are used to isolate the device from the hostile environment in which they reside. This paper describes a modeling approach to determine their sensitivity to acceleration that is very general and is applicable to different device designs and configurations. It also describes the results of device testing of a capacitive surface micromachined pressure sensor at constant acceleration levels from 500 to 2000 g's.

  18. Decarbonization Wedges. November 2015. Report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Alazard-Toux, N.; Criqui, P.; Devezeaux de Lavergne, J.G.; Chevallet, L.; Gentier, S.; Hache, E.; Le Net, E.; Menanteau, Ph.; Thais, Fr.; Achard, JL.; Allard, Fr.; Authier, O.; Babarit, A.; Badin, Fr.; Bazile, F.; Bernard, O.; Birat, JP.; Brault, P.; Burnol, A.; Carre, Fr.; Delrue, F.; Dufour, A.; Duplan, JL.; Durand, P.; Duval, O.; Fabriol, H.; Ferrant, P.; Flamant, G.; Forti, L.; Garnier, J.; Gimenez, M.; Goyeneche, O.; Hadj Said, N.; Jasserand, Fr.; Kalaydjian, F.; Le Boulluec, M.; Legrand, J.; Lorne, D.; Lucchese, P.; Magand, S.; Malbranche, Ph.; Mermillod, N.; Monot, F.; Olivier, B.; Pacaud, P.; Papillon, Ph.; Ponsot-Jacquin, C.; Quenard, D.; Rachez, X.; Rapin, M.; Rocher, Ph.; Sanjuan, B.; Sauvant-Moynot, V.; Tilagone, R.; Vinot, S.; Berthomieu, R.; Vajnovszki, A.

    2015-01-01

    2015 is a particularly eventful year in the field of energy. From 30 November through 11 December, France will host the 21. Conference of the Parties on Climate Change (COP21) in Paris. The expectations for this international event are high. Its main goal is to obtain an agreement to keep global warming below 2 deg. C by securing a set of voluntary commitments from the various countries and regions of the world to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions and by mobilizing $100 billion per year from 2020 onwards to finance climate change policies, especially in developing countries. In France, the year 2015 was also marked by the adoption of the Energy Transition and Green Growth Act that set a course and defined a road-map, through a set of objectives, aimed at helping our country reduce its CO 2 emissions in the field of energy. In this context, ANCRE (French National Alliance for Energy Research Coordination) would like to reiterate the major role of energy research and innovation in reducing anthropogenic (i.e. human induced) greenhouse gas emissions through research conducted on decarbonization wedges, a key technology in the fight against climate change in the field of energy on a planetary scale. Limiting the temperature increase on the earth's surface to 2 deg. C by 2100 is a challenging target, but it could be achievable with the rapid, sustained development and wide dissemination of a broad set of technologies. However, to achieve this goal, it is indispensable to conduct research aimed at speeding up low carbon technologies deployment and at reducing their cost. Through this joint report to which numerous researchers and experts contributed, ANCRE wishes to continue its efforts to build a global strategic vision that an Alliance comprising nearly 19 different research institutions can provide. This study follows the work conducted on energy transition scenarios for France and the road-maps drawn up by the ten programmatic groups structuring the

  19. Comparing virtual with physical wedge for the transmission factors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lin Kuei-Hua; Lin Jao-Perng; Chu Tieh-Chi; Liu Mu-Tai

    2000-01-01

    This paper investigates the discrepancies between virtual wedge and physical wedge at the standard wedge angles of 15, 30, 45, and 60 degrees. The dose distributions for virtual wedge and physics wedge were measured by using a commercial multichamber detector array. The transmission factors of each virtual wedge and physical wedge were measured for Siemens PRIMUS 3008 linear accelerator by single ion chamber. These factors were used to set-up the clinical treatment data tables for clinical dosimetry for virtual wedge utilization. The Wellhoefer IC15, 0.13cc chamber was installed on the chamber frame of Wellhoefer water phantom (48x48x40 cm 3 ). The surface of water was at 100 cm SSD. The output factor in water were measured on the central axis of each field at 5 cm depth for 6MV or 10 cm depth for 15MV X-ray on virtual wedge and physical wedge. Comparing virtual wedge with physical wedge for transmission factor as field size range from 4x4 to 25x25 cm 2 . We have measured the dose distributions using the chamber array for 25x25 cm 2 virtual wedge fields and physical wedge fields at wedge angles of 15deg to 60deg. The dose profiles at various depths were also measured using the chamber array. The transmission factors of each physical wedge were slowly increased as field sizes increase, and had different value for each wedge angle. The transmission factors of each virtual wedge were almost constant value as 1.0 for each wedge angle. The results show that the dose profiles including the penumbra dose measured by the chamber array for virtual wedge agree with those measured for the physical wedge. For transmission factors of virtual wedge were constant value as 1.0 for each angles, namely output without wedge is almost equal to output with wedge on the central axis. Virtual wedge has practical and dosimetric advantages over physical wedge. (author)

  20. Application of super-omni wedge concept to conformal radiotherapy treatment planning

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dai Jianrong; Fu Weihua; Hu Yimin

    2004-01-01

    Objective: To describe a method which can optimize beam weight, wedge angle, and wedge orientation simultaneously by combining the super-omni wedge (SOW) concept with the function of beam weight optimization provided by a commercial treatment planning system. Methods: A five-step procedure including: Step 1. To set up four 60 degree nominal wedged beams for each beam direction with the wedge orientations of 'LEFT', 'IN', 'RIGHT', 'OUT', respectively; Step 2. To define an optimization request, including an optimization goal and constraints. Authors use CMS Focus treatment planning system which allows us to choose 'maximize target dose' or 'minimize critical structure dose' as the optimization goal, and to set minimum target dose, maximum target dose, and maximum average dose of critical structures as constraints. Then the optimization process was launched as step 3; Step 4. To evaluate the plan using isodose distributions and dose-volume histograms. If acceptable, go to Step 5. Otherwise, go back to Step 2 to modify optimization constraints; and Step 5. Transform the SOW beams into the beams of omni wedge so as to reduce the number of to-be-delivered beams. Results: This procedure was found being able to demonstrate successfully in two clinical cases: an esophageal carcinoma and a brain tumor. Compared with manually designed plan, the optimized plan showed better dose homogeneity in the targets and better sparing of the critical structures. Conclusions: This method described is able to optimize beam weights while working with a treatment planning system. Not only does it improve treatment plans' quality, but also shorten the treatment planning process

  1. X-ray microcalorimeter arrays fabricated by surface micromachining

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hilton, G.C.; Beall, J.A.; Deiker, S.; Vale, L.R.; Doriese, W.B.; Beyer, Joern; Ullom, J.N.; Reintsema, C.D.; Xu, Y.; Irwin, K.D.

    2004-01-01

    We are developing arrays of Mo/Cu transition edge sensor-based detectors for use as X-ray microcalorimeters and sub-millimeter bolometers. We have fabricated 8x8 pixel X-ray microcalorimeter arrays using surface micromachining. Surface-micromachining techniques hold the promise of scalability to much larger arrays and may allow for the integration of in-plane multiplexer elements. In this paper we describe the surface micromachining process and recent improvements in the device geometry that provide for increased mechanical strength. We also present X-ray and heat pulse spectra collected using these detectors

  2. locally fabricated metal step wedge for quality assurance

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    DR. AMINU

    naturally/artificially occurring radioactive elements, ... energy to improve health care, as in radiography, ... The use of low performance x-ray machines. b. .... carried out using the digital densitometer x-rite 3 31 nickel-cadmium. (NiCad) battery.

  3. Locally fabricated metal step wedge for quality assurance in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The code of safe practice for the use of x-rays in medical diagnosis requires that each x-ray facility has an appropriate quality assurance program in radiation protection, to ensure accurate diagnosis, and to keep doses as low as reasonably achievable. This requires an in-house system of regular checks and procedures.

  4. Micromachined Ultrasonic Transducers for 3-D Imaging

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christiansen, Thomas Lehrmann

    of state-of-the-art 3-D ultrasound systems. The focus is on row-column addressed transducer arrays. This previously sparsely investigated addressing scheme offers a highly reduced number of transducer elements, resulting in reduced transducer manufacturing costs and data processing. To produce...... such transducer arrays, capacitive micromachined ultrasonic transducer (CMUT) technology is chosen for this project. Properties such as high bandwidth and high design flexibility makes this an attractive transducer technology, which is under continuous development in the research community. A theoretical...... treatment of CMUTs is presented, including investigations of the anisotropic plate behaviour and modal radiation patterns of such devices. Several new CMUT fabrication approaches are developed and investigated in terms of oxide quality and surface protrusions, culminating in a simple four-mask process...

  5. Laser micromachining of sputtered DLC films

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fu, Y.Q.; Luo, J.K.; Flewitt, A.J.; Ong, S.E.; Zhang, S.; Milne, W.I.

    2006-01-01

    DLC films with different thicknesses (from 100 nm to 1.9 μm) were deposited using sputtering of graphite target in pure argon atmosphere without substrate heating. Film microstructures (sp 2 /sp 3 ratio) and mechanical properties (modulus, hardness, stress) were characterized as a function of film thickness. A thin layer of aluminum about 60 nm was deposited on the DLC film surface. Laser micromachining of Al/DLC layer was performed to form microcantilever structures, which were released using a reactive ion etching system with SF 6 plasma. Due to the intrinsic stress in DLC films and bimorph Al/DLC structure, the microcantilevers bent up with different curvatures. For DLC film of 100 nm thick, the cantilever even formed microtubes. The relationship between the bimorph beam bending and DLC film properties (such as stress, modulus, etc.) were discussed in details

  6. Fabrication of a novel quartz micromachined gyroscope

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xie, Liqiang; Xing, Jianchun; Wang, Haoxu; Wu, Xuezhong

    2015-04-01

    A novel quartz micromachined gyroscope is proposed in this paper. The novel gyroscope is realized by quartz anisotropic wet etching and 3-dimensional electrodes deposition. In the quartz wet etching process, the quality of Cr/Au mask films affecting the process are studied by experiment. An excellent mask film with 100 Å Cr and 2000 Å Au is achieved by optimization of experimental parameters. Crystal facets after etching seriously affect the following sidewall electrodes deposition process and the structure's mechanical behaviours. Removal of crystal facets is successfully implemented by increasing etching time based on etching rate ratios between facets and crystal planes. In the electrodes deposition process, an aperture mask evaporation method is employed to prepare electrodes on 3-dimensional surfaces of the gyroscope structure. The alignments among the aperture masks are realized by the ABM™ Mask Aligner System. Based on the processes described above, a z-axis quartz gyroscope is fabricated successfully.

  7. Structure optimization and simulation analysis of the quartz micromachined gyroscope

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xuezhong Wu

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Structure optimization and simulation analysis of the quartz micromachined gyroscope are reported in this paper. The relationships between the structure parameters and the frequencies of work mode were analysed by finite element analysis. The structure parameters of the quartz micromachined gyroscope were optimized to reduce the difference between the frequencies of the drive mode and the sense mode. The simulation results were proved by testing the prototype gyroscope, which was fabricated by micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS technology. Therefore, the frequencies of the drive mode and the sense mode can match each other by the structure optimization and simulation analysis of the quartz micromachined gyroscope, which is helpful in the design of the high sensitivity quartz micromachined gyroscope.

  8. Micromachined two dimensional resistor arrays for determination of gas parameters

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Baar, J.J.J.; Verwey, Willem B.; Dijkstra, Mindert; Dijkstra, Marcel; Wiegerink, Remco J.; Lammerink, Theodorus S.J.; Krijnen, Gijsbertus J.M.; Elwenspoek, Michael Curt

    A resistive sensor array is presented for two dimensional temperature distribution measurements in a micromachined flow channel. This allows simultaneous measurement of flow velocity and fluid parameters, like thermal conductivity, diffusion coefficient and viscosity. More general advantages of

  9. Integration of Capacitive Micromachined Ultrasound Transducers to Microfluidic Devices

    KAUST Repository

    Viržonis, Darius; Kodzius, Rimantas; Vanagas, Galius

    2013-01-01

    The design and manufacturing flexibility of capacitive micromachined ultrasound transducers (CMUT) makes them attractive option for integration with microfluidic devices both for sensing and fluid manipulation. CMUT concept is introduced here

  10. Integration of Capacitive Micromachined Ultrasound Transducers to Microfluidic Devices

    KAUST Repository

    Viržonis, Darius

    2013-10-22

    The design and manufacturing flexibility of capacitive micromachined ultrasound transducers (CMUT) makes them attractive option for integration with microfluidic devices both for sensing and fluid manipulation. CMUT concept is introduced here by presentin

  11. Non-traditional micromachining processes fundamentals and applications

    CERN Document Server

    Bhattacharyya, B; Davim, J

    2017-01-01

    This book presents a complete coverage of micromachining processes from their basic material removal phenomena to past and recent research carried by a number of researchers worldwide. Chapters on effective utilization of material resources, improved efficiency, reliability, durability, and cost effectiveness of the products are presented. This book provides the reader with new and recent developments in the field of micromachining and microfabrication of engineering materials.

  12. Measurement of hepatic venous pressure gradient revisited: Catheter wedge vs balloon wedge techniques

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S Timothy Chelliah

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Aims: To evaluate the accuracy of measurement of hepatic venous pressure gradient by catheter wedge as compared to balloon wedge (the gold standard. Materials and Methods: Forty-five patients having a clinical diagnosis of intrahepatic portal hypertension were subjected to the two different types of pressure measurements (catheter wedge and balloon wedge during transjugular liver biopsy under fluoroscopic guidance. Statistical Analysis: Spearman′s rank correlation coefficient, Bland-Altman plot for agreement, and single measure intraclass correlation were used for analysis of data. Results: There was a close correlation between the results obtained by both the techniques, with highly significant concordance (P < 0.0001. Hepatic venous pressure gradients as measured by the catheter wedge technique were either equal to or less than those obtained by the balloon wedge technique. Conclusions: The difference in hepatic venous pressure gradients measured by the two techniques is insignificant.

  13. Use of Wedge Absorbers in MICE

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Neuffer, D. [Fermi National Accelerator Lab. (FNAL), Batavia, IL (United States); Summers, D. [Univ. of Mississippi, Oxford, MS (United States); Mohayai, T. [Fermi National Accelerator Lab. (FNAL), Batavia, IL (United States); IIT, Chicago, IL (United States); Snopok, P. [Fermi National Accelerator Lab. (FNAL), Batavia, IL (United States); IIT, Chicago, IL (United States); Rogers, C. [Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC), Oxford (United Kingdom). Rutherford Appleton Lab. (RAL)

    2017-03-01

    Wedge absorbers are needed to obtain longitudinal cooling in ionization cooling. They also can be used to obtain emittance exchanges between longitudinal and transverse phase space. There can be large exchanges in emittance, even with single wedges. In the present note we explore the use of wedge absorbers in the MICE experiment to obtain transverse–longitudinal emittance exchanges within present and future operational conditions. The same wedge can be used to explore “direct” and “reverse” emittance exchange dynamics, where direct indicates a configuration that reduces momentum spread and reverse is a configuration that increases momentum spread. Analytical estimated and ICOOL and G4BeamLine simulations of the exchanges at MICE parameters are presented. Large exchanges can be obtained in both reverse and direct configurations.

  14. Silicon Micromachined Microlens Array for THz Antennas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Choonsup; Chattopadhyay, Goutam; Mehdi, IImran; Gill, John J.; Jung-Kubiak, Cecile D.; Llombart, Nuria

    2013-01-01

    5 5 silicon microlens array was developed using a silicon micromachining technique for a silicon-based THz antenna array. The feature of the silicon micromachining technique enables one to microfabricate an unlimited number of microlens arrays at one time with good uniformity on a silicon wafer. This technique will resolve one of the key issues in building a THz camera, which is to integrate antennas in a detector array. The conventional approach of building single-pixel receivers and stacking them to form a multi-pixel receiver is not suited at THz because a single-pixel receiver already has difficulty fitting into mass, volume, and power budgets, especially in space applications. In this proposed technique, one has controllability on both diameter and curvature of a silicon microlens. First of all, the diameter of microlens depends on how thick photoresist one could coat and pattern. So far, the diameter of a 6- mm photoresist microlens with 400 m in height has been successfully microfabricated. Based on current researchers experiences, a diameter larger than 1-cm photoresist microlens array would be feasible. In order to control the curvature of the microlens, the following process variables could be used: 1. Amount of photoresist: It determines the curvature of the photoresist microlens. Since the photoresist lens is transferred onto the silicon substrate, it will directly control the curvature of the silicon microlens. 2. Etching selectivity between photoresist and silicon: The photoresist microlens is formed by thermal reflow. In order to transfer the exact photoresist curvature onto silicon, there needs to be etching selectivity of 1:1 between silicon and photoresist. However, by varying the etching selectivity, one could control the curvature of the silicon microlens. The figure shows the microfabricated silicon microlens 5 x5 array. The diameter of the microlens located in the center is about 2.5 mm. The measured 3-D profile of the microlens surface has a

  15. A Wedge Absorber Experiment at MICE

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Neuffer, David [Fermilab; Mohayai, Tanaz [IIT, Chicago; Rogers, Chris [Rutherford; Snopok, Pavel [IIT, Chicago; Summers, Don [Mississippi U.

    2017-05-01

    Emittance exchange mediated by wedge absorbers is required for longitudinal ionization cooling and for final transverse emittance minimization for a muon collider. A wedge absorber within the MICE beam line could serve as a demonstration of the type of emittance exchange needed for 6-D cooling, including the configurations needed for muon colliders, as well as configurations for low-energy muon sources. Parameters for this test are explored in simulation and possible experimental configurations with simulated results are presented.

  16. Inclined indentation of smooth wedge in rock mass

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chanyshev, AI; Podyminogin, GM; Lukyashko, OA

    2018-03-01

    The article focuses on the inclined rigid wedge indentation into a rigid-plastic half-plane of rocks with the Mohr–Coulomb-Mohr plasticity. The limiting loads on different sides of the wedge are determined versus the internal friction angle, cohesion and wedge angle. It is shown that when the force is applied along the symmetry axis of the wedge, the zone of plasticity is formed only on one wedge side. In order to form the plasticity zone on both sides of the wedge, it is necessary to apply the force asymmetrically relative to the wedge symmetry axis. An engineering solution for the asymmetrical case implementation is suggested.

  17. The added value of a mobile application of Community Case Management on referral, re-consultation and hospitalization rates of children aged under 5 years in two districts in Northern Malawi: study protocol for a pragmatic, stepped-wedge cluster-randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hardy, Victoria; O'Connor, Yvonne; Heavin, Ciara; Mastellos, Nikolaos; Tran, Tammy; O'Donoghue, John; Fitzpatrick, Annette L; Ide, Nicole; Wu, Tsung-Shu Joseph; Chirambo, Griphin Baxter; Muula, Adamson S; Nyirenda, Moffat; Carlsson, Sven; Andersson, Bo; Thompson, Matthew

    2017-10-11

    There is evidence to suggest that frontline community health workers in Malawi are under-referring children to higher-level facilities. Integrating a digitized version of paper-based methods of Community Case Management (CCM) could strengthen delivery, increasing urgent referral rates and preventing unnecessary re-consultations and hospital admissions. This trial aims to evaluate the added value of the Supporting LIFE electronic Community Case Management Application (SL eCCM App) compared to paper-based CCM on urgent referral, re-consultation and hospitalization rates, in two districts in Northern Malawi. This is a pragmatic, stepped-wedge cluster-randomized trial assessing the added value of the SL eCCM App on urgent referral, re-consultation and hospitalization rates of children aged 2 months and older to up to 5 years, within 7 days of the index visit. One hundred and two health surveillance assistants (HSAs) were stratified into six clusters based on geographical location, and clusters randomized to the timing of crossover to the intervention using simple, computer-generated randomization. Training workshops were conducted prior to the control (paper-CCM) and intervention (paper-CCM + SL eCCM App) in assigned clusters. Neither participants nor study personnel were blinded to allocation. Outcome measures were determined by abstraction of clinical data from patient records 2 weeks after recruitment. A nested qualitative study explored perceptions of adherence to urgent referral recommendations and a cost evaluation determined the financial and time-related costs to caregivers of subsequent health care utilization. The trial was conducted between July 2016 and February 2017. This is the first large-scale trial evaluating the value of adding a mobile application of CCM to the assessment of children aged under 5 years. The trial will generate evidence on the potential use of mobile health for CCM in Malawi, and more widely in other low- and middle

  18. A cluster randomised stepped wedge trial to evaluate the effectiveness of a multifaceted information technology-based intervention in reducing high-risk prescribing of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and antiplatelets in primary medical care: The DQIP study protocol

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dreischulte Tobias

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background High-risk prescribing of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs and antiplatelet agents accounts for a significant proportion of hospital admissions due to preventable adverse drug events. The recently completed PINCER trial has demonstrated that a one-off pharmacist-led information technology (IT-based intervention can significantly reduce high-risk prescribing in primary care, but there is evidence that effects decrease over time and employing additional pharmacists to facilitate change may not be sustainable. Methods/design We will conduct a cluster randomised controlled with a stepped wedge design in 40 volunteer general practices in two Scottish health boards. Eligible practices are those that are using the INPS Vision clinical IT system, and have agreed to have relevant medication-related data to be automatically extracted from their electronic medical records. All practices (clusters that agree to take part will receive the data-driven quality improvement in primary care (DQIP intervention, but will be randomised to one of 10 start dates. The DQIP intervention has three components: a web-based informatics tool that provides weekly updated feedback of targeted prescribing at practice level, prompts the review of individual patients affected, and summarises each patient's relevant risk factors and prescribing; an outreach visit providing education on targeted prescribing and training in the use of the informatics tool; and a fixed payment of 350 GBP (560 USD; 403 EUR up front and a small payment of 15 GBP (24 USD; 17 EUR for each patient reviewed in the 12 months of the intervention. We hypothesise that the DQIP intervention will reduce a composite of nine previously validated measures of high-risk prescribing. Due to the nature of the intervention, it is not possible to blind practices, the core research team, or the data analyst. However, outcome assessment is entirely objective and automated. There will

  19. Silicon Micromachining in RF and Photonic Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Tsen-Hwang; Congdon, Phil; Magel, Gregory; Pang, Lily; Goldsmith, Chuck; Randall, John; Ho, Nguyen

    1995-01-01

    Texas Instruments (TI) has developed membrane and micromirror devices since the late 1970s. An eggcrate space membrane was used as the spatial light modulator in the early years. Discrete micromirrors supported by cantilever beams created a new era for micromirror devices. Torsional micromirror and flexure-beam micromirror devices were promising for mass production because of their stable supports. TI's digital torsional micromirror device is an amplitude modulator (known as the digital micromirror device (DMD) and is in production development, discussed elsewhere. We also use a torsional device for a 4 x 4 fiber-optic crossbar switch in a 2 cm x 2 cm package. The flexure-beam micromirror device is an analog phase modulator and is considered more efficient than amplitude modulators for use in optical processing systems. TI also developed millimeter-sized membranes for integrated optical switches for telecommunication and network applications. Using a member in radio frequency (RF) switch applications is a rapidly growing area because of the micromechanical device performance in microsecond-switching characteristics. Our preliminary membrane RF switch test structure results indicate promising speed and RF switching performance. TI collaborated with MIT for modeling of metal-based micromachining.

  20. Apparatus for precision micromachining with lasers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, J.J.; Dragon, E.P.; Warner, B.E.

    1998-04-28

    A new material processing apparatus using a short-pulsed, high-repetition-rate visible laser for precision micromachining utilizes a near diffraction limited laser, a high-speed precision two-axis tilt-mirror for steering the laser beam, an optical system for either focusing or imaging the laser beam on the part, and a part holder that may consist of a cover plate and a back plate. The system is generally useful for precision drilling, cutting, milling and polishing of metals and ceramics, and has broad application in manufacturing precision components. Precision machining has been demonstrated through percussion drilling and trepanning using this system. With a 30 W copper vapor laser running at multi-kHz pulse repetition frequency, straight parallel holes with size varying from 500 microns to less than 25 microns and with aspect ratios up to 1:40 have been consistently drilled with good surface finish on a variety of metals. Micromilling and microdrilling on ceramics using a 250 W copper vapor laser have also been demonstrated with good results. Materialographic sections of machined parts show little (submicron scale) recast layer and heat affected zone. 1 fig.

  1. Studying wedge factors and beam profiles for physical and enhanced dynamic wedges

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ahmad Misbah

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available This study was designed to investigate variation in Varian′s Physical and Enhanced Dynamic Wedge Factors (WF as a function of depth and field size. The profiles for physical wedges (PWs and enhanced dynamic wedges (EDWs were also measured using LDA-99 array and compared for confirmation of EDW angles at different depths and field sizes. WF measurements were performed in water phantom using cylindrical 0.66 cc ionization chamber. WF was measured by taking the ratio of wedge and open field ionization data. A normalized wedge factor (NWF was introduced to circumvent large differences between wedge factors for different wedge angles. A strong linear dependence of PW Factor (PWF with depth was observed. Maximum variation of 8.9% and 4.1% was observed for 60° PW with depth at 6 and 15 MV beams respectively. The variation in EDW Factor (EDWF with depth was almost negligible and less than two per cent. The highest variation in PWF as a function of field size was 4.1% and 3.4% for thicker wedge (60° at 6 and 15 MV beams respectively and decreases with decreasing wedge angle. EDWF shows strong field size dependence and significant variation was observed for all wedges at both photon energies. Differences in profiles between PW and EDW were observed on toe and heel sides. These differences were dominant for larger fields, shallow depths, thicker wedges and low energy beam. The study indicated that ignoring depth and field size dependence of WF may result in under/over dose to the patient especially doing manual point dose calculation.

  2. Mantle wedge serpentinization effects on slab dips

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eh Tan

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The mechanical coupling between a subducting slab and the overlying mantle wedge is an important factor in controlling the subduction dip angle and the flow in mantel wedge. This paper investigates the role of the amount of mantle serpentinization on the subduction zone evolution. With numerical thermos-mechanical models with elasto-visco-plastic rheology, we vary the thickness and depth extent of mantle serpentinization in the mantle wedge to control the degree of coupling between the slab and mantle wedge. A thin serpentinized mantle layer is required for stable subduction. For models with stable subduction, we find that the slab dip is affected by the down-dip extent and the mantle serpentinization thickness. A critical down-dip extent exists in mantle serpentinization, determined by the thickness of the overriding lithosphere. If the down-dip extent does not exceed the critical depth, the slab is partially coupled to the overriding lithosphere and has a constant dip angle regardless of the mantle serpentinization thickness. However, if the down-dip extent exceeds the critical depth, the slab and the base of the overriding lithosphere would be separated and decoupled by a thick layer of serpentinized peridotite. This allows further slab bending and results in steeper slab dip. Increasing mantle serpentinization thickness will also result in larger slab dip. We also find that with weak mantle wedge, there is no material flowing from the asthenosphere into the serpentinized mantle wedge. All of these results indicate that serpentinization is an important ingredient when studying the subduction dynamics in the mantle wedge.

  3. Optical dating of relict sand wedges and composite-wedge pseudomorphs in Flanders, Belgium

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Buylaert, Jan-Pieter; Ghysels, Günther; Murray, Andrew S.

    2009-01-01

    We report on quartz Optically Stimulated Luminescence (OSL) dating of the infill of 14 relict sand wedges and composite-wedge pseudomorphs at 5 different sites in Flanders, Belgium. A laboratory dose recovery test indicates that the single-aliquot regenerative-dose (SAR) procedure is suitable for...

  4. A batch process micromachined thermoelectric energy harvester: fabrication and characterization

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Su, J; Goedbloed, M; Van Andel, Y; De Nooijer, M C; Elfrink, R; Wang, Z; Vullers, R J M; Leonov, V

    2010-01-01

    Micromachined thermopiles are considered as a cost-effective solution for energy harvesters working at a small temperature difference and weak heat flows typical for, e.g., the human body. They can be used for powering autonomous wireless sensor nodes in a body area network. In this paper, a micromachined thermoelectric energy harvester with 6 µm high polycrystalline silicon germanium (poly-SiGe) thermocouples fabricated on a 6 inch wafer is presented. An open circuit voltage of 1.49 V and an output power of 0.4 µW can be generated with 3.5 K temperature difference in a model of a wearable micromachined energy harvester of the discussed design, which has a die size of 1.0 mm × 2.5 mm inside a watch-size generator

  5. A sub-cm micromachined electron microscope

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feinerman, A. D.; Crewe, D. A.; Perng, D. C.; Shoaf, S. E.; Crewe, A. V.

    1993-01-01

    A new approach for fabricating macroscopic (approximately 10x10x10 mm(exp 3)) structures with micron accuracy has been developed. This approach combines the precision of semiconductor processing and fiber optic technologies. A (100) silicon wafer is anisotropically etched to create four orthogonal v-grooves and an aperture on each 10x12 mm die. Precision 308 micron optical fibers are sandwiched between the die to align the v-grooves. The fiber is then anodically bonded to the die above and below it. This procedure is repeated to create thick structures and a stack of 5 or 6 die will be used to create a miniature scanning electron microscope (MSEM). Two die in the structure will have a segmented electrode to deflect the beam and correct for astigmatism. The entire structure is UHV compatible. The performance of an SEM improves as its length is reduced and a sub-cm 2 keV MSEM with a field emission source should have approximately 1 nm resolution. A low voltage high resolution MSEM would be useful for the examination of biological specimens and semiconductors with a minimum of damage. The first MSEM will be tested with existing 6 micron thermionic sources. In the future a micromachined field emission source will be used. The stacking technology presented in this paper can produce an array of MSEMs 1 to 30 mm in length with a 1 mm or larger period. A key question being addressed by this research is the optimum size for a low voltage MSEM which will be determined by the required spatial resolution, field of view, and working distance.

  6. Innovative wedge axe in making split firewood

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mutikainen, A.

    1998-01-01

    Interteam Oy, a company located in Espoo, has developed a new method for making split firewood. The tools on which the patented System Logmatic are based are wedge axe and cylindrical splitting-carrying frame. The equipment costs about 495 FIM. The block of wood to be split is placed inside the upright carrying frame and split in a series of splitting actions using the innovative wedge axe. The finished split firewood remains in the carrying frame, which (as its name indicates) also serves as the means for carrying the firewood. This innovative wedge-axe method was compared with the conventional splitting of wood using an axe (Fiskars -handy 1400 splitting axe costing about 200 FIM) in a study conducted at TTS-Institute. There were eight test subjects involved in the study. In the case of the wedge-axe method, handling of the blocks to be split and of the finished firewood was a little quicker, but in actual splitting it was a little slower than the conventional axe method. The average productivity of splitting the wood and of the work stages related to it was about 0.4 m 3 per effective hour in both methods. The methods were also equivalent of one another in terms of the load imposed by the work when measured in terms of the heart rate. As regards work safety, the wedge-axe method was superior to the conventional method, but the continuous striking action and jolting transmitted to the arms were unpleasant (orig.)

  7. Multi-layer enhancement to polysilicon surface-micromachining technology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sniegowski, J.J.; Rodgers, M.S. [Sandia National Labs., Albuquerque, NM (United States). Intelligent Micromachine Dept.

    1997-10-01

    A multi-level polysilicon surface-micromachining technology consisting of 5 layers of polysilicon is presented. Surface topography and film mechanical stress are the major impediments encountered in the development of a multilayer surface-micromachining process. However, excellent mechanical film characteristics have been obtained through the use of chemical-mechanical polishing for planarization of topography and by proper sequencing of film deposition with thermal anneals. Examples of operating microactuators, geared power-transfer mechanisms, and optical elements demonstrate the mechanical advantages of construction with 5 polysilicon layers.

  8. UV laser micromachining of ceramic materials: formation of columnar topographies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Oliveira, V.; Vilar, R.; Conde, O.

    2001-01-01

    Laser machining is increasingly appearing as an alternative for micromachining of ceramics. Using ceramic materials using excimer lasers can result in smooth surfaces or in the formation of cone-like or columnar topography. Potential applications of cone-shaped or columnar surface topography include, for example, light trapping in anti-reflection coatings and improvement of adhesion bonding between ceramic materials. In this communication results of a comparative study of surface topography change during micromachining of several ceramic materials with different ablation behaviors are reported. (orig.)

  9. Synthesis and structure of large single crystalline silver hexagonal microplates suitable for micromachining

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lyutov, Dimitar L.; Genkov, Kaloyan V.; Zyapkov, Anton D.; Tsutsumanova, Gichka G.; Tzonev, Atanas N. [Department of Solid State Physics and Microelectronics, Faculty of Physics, University of Sofia, 5, J. Bouchier Blvd, Sofia (Bulgaria); Lyutov, Lyudmil G. [Department of General and Inorganic Chemistry, Faculty of Chemistry, University of Sofia, 1, J. Bouchier Blvd, Sofia (Bulgaria); Russev, Stoyan C., E-mail: scr@phys.uni-sofia.bg [Department of Solid State Physics and Microelectronics, Faculty of Physics, University of Sofia, 5, J. Bouchier Blvd, Sofia (Bulgaria)

    2014-01-15

    We report a simple one-step synthesis method of large single crystalline Ag (111) hexagonal microplates with sharp edges and a size of up to tens of microns. Single silver crystals were produced by reduction silver nitrate aqueous solution with 4-(methylamino)phenol sulfate. Scanning and transmission electron microscopy, energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, selected area electron diffraction and optical microscopy techniques were combined to characterize the crystals. It is shown that the microplates can be easily dispersed and transferred as single objects onto different substrates and subsequently used as a high quality plasmonic starting material for micromachining of future nanocomponents, using modern top-down techniques like focused-ion beam milling and gas injection deposition. - Highlights: • Synthesis of large Ag hexagonal microplates with high crystallinity. • It is shown and discussed the role of twinning for the anisotropic 2D growth. • The Ag plates are stable in water and can be dispersed onto different substrates. • Their positioning and subsequent micromachining with FIB/GIS is demonstrated. • Suitable starting material for future plasmonic nanocomponents.

  10. Convolution-wedge product of fields

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Diep, D.N.; Duc, D.V.; Tan, H.V.; Viet, N.A.

    2007-07-01

    In this paper we use the pair of electric-magnetic (or GNO, or Langlands) duality groups G = Sp(1) and L G = SO(3) and the T-transformation in mirror symmetry (or the S-duality, or the Fourier-Mukai transformation) to define the wedge product of fields: first by using gauge transformation, we reduce the fields with values in LieG = sp(1) to the fields with values in the Lie algebra of the maximal torus t subset of LieG = sp(1). Next we use the Fourier-Mukai transformation of fields to have the images as fields with values in the Lie algebra of the Langlands dual torus L t in Lie L G = so(3). The desired wedge product of two fields is defined as the pre-image of the ordinary wedge product of images with values in L t subset of so(3). (author)

  11. Diffraction by an immersed elastic wedge

    CERN Document Server

    Croisille, Jean-Pierre

    1999-01-01

    This monograph presents the mathematical description and numerical computation of the high-frequency diffracted wave by an immersed elastic wave with normal incidence. The mathematical analysis is based on the explicit description of the principal symbol of the pseudo-differential operator connected with the coupled linear problem elasticity/fluid by the wedge interface. This description is subsequently used to derive an accurate numerical computation of diffraction diagrams for different incoming waves in the fluid, and for different wedge angles. The method can be applied to any problem of coupled waves by a wedge interface. This work is of interest for any researcher concerned with high frequency wave scattering, especially mathematicians, acousticians, engineers.

  12. Irradiation of parametria by double-wedge

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Weisz, Csaba; Katona, Ernoe; Zarand, Pal; Polgar, Istvan; Nemeth, Gyoergy

    1984-01-01

    The dose distribution of a cobalt unit modified with a double-wedge as well as its combination with intracavitary radiotherapy was investigated. The measurements were made in both Alderson-Rando and wather phantom by using film densitometry, thermoluminescence dosimetry and ionization chambers. The dose distribution calculated on the basis of the Van de Geij program was in good agreement with the measurements. A homogeneous irradiation of the parametria can be obtained by using a combination of intracavitary and external double-wedge irradiation. (author)

  13. Graphene Plasmons in Triangular Wedges and Grooves

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gonçalves, P. A. D.; Dias, E. J. C.; Xiao, Sanshui

    2016-01-01

    and tunability of graphene plasmons guided along the apex of a graphene-covered dielectric wedge or groove. In particular, we present a quasi-analytic model to describe the plasmonic eigenmodes in such a system, including the complete determination of their spectrum and corresponding induced potential...... and electric-field distributions. We have found that the dispersion of wedge/groove graphene plasmons follows the same functional dependence as their flat-graphene plasmon counterparts, but now scaled by a (purely) geometric factor in which all the information about the system’s geometry is contained. We...

  14. Monitoring of yeast cell concentration using a micromachined impedance sensor

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Krommenhoek, E.E.; Gardeniers, Johannes G.E.; Bomer, Johan G.; van den Berg, Albert; Li, X.; Ottens, M.; van der Wielen, L.A.M.; van Dedem, G.W.K.; van Leeuwen, M.; van Gulik, W.M.; Heijnen, J.J.

    2005-01-01

    The paper describes the design, modelling and experimental characterization of a micromachined impedance sensor for on-line monitoring of the viable yeast cell concentration (biomass) in a miniaturized cell assay. Measurements in a Saccharomyces cerevisiae cell culture show that the permittivity of

  15. A micromachined surface stress sensor with electronic readout

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Carlen, Edwin; Weinberg, M.S.; Zapata, A.M.; Borenstein, J.T.

    2008-01-01

    A micromachined surface stress sensor has been fabricated and integrated off chip with a low-noise, differential capacitance, electronic readout circuit. The differential capacitance signal is modulated with a high frequency carrier signal, and the output signal is synchronously demodulated and

  16. Development of a focused ion beam micromachining system

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pellerin, J.G.; Griffis, D.; Russell, P.E.

    1988-12-01

    Focused ion beams are currently being investigated for many submicron fabrication and analytical purposes. An FIB micromachining system consisting of a UHV vacuum system, a liquid metal ion gun, and a control and data acquisition computer has been constructed. This system is being used to develop nanofabrication and nanomachining techniques involving focused ion beams and scanning tunneling microscopes.

  17. Sub-band-gap laser micromachining of lithium niobate

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christensen, F. K.; Müllenborn, Matthias

    1995-01-01

    method is reported which enables us to do laser processing of lithium niobate using sub-band-gap photons. Using high scan speeds, moderate power densities, and sub-band-gap photon energies results in volume removal rates in excess of 106µm3/s. This enables fast micromachining of small piezoelectric...

  18. Are Pericentric Inversions Reorganizing Wedge Shell Genomes?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel García-Souto

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Wedge shells belonging to the Donacidae family are the dominant bivalves in exposed beaches in almost all areas of the world. Typically, two or more sympatric species of wedge shells differentially occupy intertidal, sublittoral, and offshore coastal waters in any given locality. A molecular cytogenetic analysis of two sympatric and closely related wedge shell species, Donax trunculus and Donax vittatus, was performed. Results showed that the karyotypes of these two species were both strikingly different and closely alike; whilst metacentric and submetacentric chromosome pairs were the main components of the karyotype of D. trunculus, 10–11 of the 19 chromosome pairs were telocentric in D. vittatus, most likely as a result of different pericentric inversions. GC-rich heterochromatic bands were present in both species. Furthermore, they showed coincidental 45S ribosomal RNA (rRNA, 5S rRNA and H3 histone gene clusters at conserved chromosomal locations, although D. trunculus had an additional 45S rDNA cluster. Intraspecific pericentric inversions were also detected in both D. trunculus and D. vittatus. The close genetic similarity of these two species together with the high degree of conservation of the 45S rRNA, 5S rRNA and H3 histone gene clusters, and GC-rich heterochromatic bands indicate that pericentric inversions contribute to the karyotype divergence in wedge shells.

  19. Quench propagation across the copper wedges in SSC dipoles

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ghosh, A.K.; Robins, K.E.; Sampson, W.B.

    1986-01-01

    The effect of copper wedges on quench propagation in SSC windings has been studied. The results indicate that the turn-to-turn quench transit time for conductors separated by an insulated copper wedge can be predicted with reasonable accuracy from the bulk quench properties and the mean wedge thickness

  20. 49 CFR 215.113 - Defective plain bearing wedge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... 49 Transportation 4 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Defective plain bearing wedge. 215.113 Section 215... Suspension System § 215.113 Defective plain bearing wedge. A railroad may not place or continue in service a car, if a plain bearing wedge on that car is— (a) Missing; (b) Cracked; (c) Broken; or (d) Not located...

  1. Contralateral breast dose reduction using a virtual wedge

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yeo, In Hwan; Kim, Dae Yong; Kim, Tae Hyun; Shin, Kyung Hwan; Chie, Eui Kyu; Park, Won; Lim, Do Hoon; Huh, Seung Jae; Ahn, Yong Chan

    2005-01-01

    To evaluate the contralateral breast dose using a virtual wedge compared with that using a physical wedge and an open beam in a Siemens linear accelerator. The contralateral breast dose was measured using diodes placed on a humanoid phantom. Diodes were placed at 5.5 cm (position 1), 9.5 cm (position 2), and 14 cm (position 3) along the medial-lateral line from the medial edge of the treatment field. A 6-MV photon beam was used with tangential irradiation technique at 50 and 230 degrees of gantry angle. Asymmetrically collimated 17 x 10 cm field was used. For the first set of experiment, four treatment set-ups were used, which were an open medial beam with a 30-degree wedged lateral beam (physical and virtual wedges, respectively) and a 15-degree wedge medial beam with a 15-degree wedged lateral beam (physical and virtual wedges, respectively). The second set of experiment consists of setting with medial beam without wedge, a 15-degree wedge, and a 60-degree wedge (physical and virtual wedges, respectively). Identical monitor units were delivered. Each set of experiment was repeated for three times. In the first set of experiment, the contralateral breast dose was the highest at the position 1 and decreased in order of the position 2 and 3. The contralateral breast dose was reduced with open beam on the medial side (2.70± 1.46%) compared to medial beam with a wedge (both physical and virtual) (3.25 ± 1.59%). The differences were larger with a physical wedge (0.99 ± 0.18%) than a virtual wedge (0.10 ± 0.01%) at all positions. The use of a virtual wedge reduced the contralateral breast dose by 0.12% to 1.20% of the prescribed dose compared to a physical wedge with same technique. In the second experiment, the contralateral breast dose decreased in order of the open beam, the virtual wedge, and the physical wedge at the position 1, and it decreased in order of a physical wedge, an open beam, and a virtual wedge at the position 2 and 3. The virtual wedge equipped

  2. Checking the virtual treatment modality Wedge from Siemens; Verificacion de la modalidad de tratamiento virtual WEDGE de SIEMENS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Suero Rodrigo, M. A.; Marques Fraguela, E.

    2011-07-01

    The treatment modality Virtual Wedge (VW) or implemented by Siemens virtual wedge in electron linear accelerators achieved dose distributions are similar but not identical, to those obtained with physical wedges. Among the advantages against the latter is the greater ease of use, wedge factor close to one, and lower peripheral dose. However, these benefits are to be effective requires a through quality control dependence because a larger number of parameters that control the generation of the beam, the dose monitor system and the movement of the jaws of the collimator. We performed a study of the wedge taking into account different configurations that can affect their behavior from the dosimetric point of view.

  3. Micromachined sensor and actuator research at Sandia`s Microelectronics Development Laboratory

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Smith, J.H.

    1996-11-01

    An overview of the surface micromachining program at the Microelectronics Development Laboratory of Sandia National Laboratories is presented. Development efforts are underway for a variety of surface micromachined sensors and actuators for both defense and commercial applications. A technology that embeds micromechanical devices below the surface of the wafer prior to microelectronics fabrication has been developed for integrating microelectronics with surface-micromachined micromechanical devices. The application of chemical-mechanical polishing to increase the manufacturability of micromechanical devices is also presented.

  4. Micromachined ultrasonic droplet generator based on a liquid horn structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meacham, J. M.; Ejimofor, C.; Kumar, S.; Degertekin, F. L.; Fedorov, A. G.

    2004-05-01

    A micromachined ultrasonic droplet generator is developed and demonstrated for drop-on-demand fluid atomization. The droplet generator comprises a bulk ceramic piezoelectric transducer for ultrasound generation, a reservoir for the ejection fluid, and a silicon micromachined liquid horn structure as the nozzle. The nozzles are formed using a simple batch microfabrication process that involves wet etching of (100) silicon in potassium hydroxide solution. Device operation is demonstrated by droplet ejection of water through 30 μm orifices at 1.49 and 2.30 MHz. The finite-element simulations of the acoustic fields in the cavity and electrical impedance of the device are in agreement with the measurements and indicate that the device utilizes cavity resonances in the 1-5 MHz range in conjunction with acoustic wave focusing by the pyramidally shaped nozzles to achieve low power operation.

  5. Condensation of sodium on a micromachined surface for AMTEC

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Crowley, C.J.; Izenson, M.G.

    1993-01-01

    A novel condenser component is being developed to enable Alkali Metal Thermal to Electric Conversion (AMTEC) technology to achieve two critical goals: (1) optimization of conversion efficiency and (2) microgravity fluid management. The first goal is achieved by minimizing parasitic radiation heat transfer losses for condensers with a large view factor to the high-temperature β double-prime-alumina surface. The condenser geometry includes a specially designed, micromachined surface where large capillary forces are used to manage the fluid distribution to accomplish the second goal. We present and discuss the results of separate effects experiments investigating the wetting and condensation behavior of sodium on this capillary surface. Test results show that the micromachined surface maintains a smooth, high reflective film of liquid sodium on the surface, which implies reduced parasitic losses and increased conversion efficiencies in AMTEC cells. Accomplishing this in an adverse gravity gradient demonstrates the potential for management of the fluid even under spacecraft acceleration conditions

  6. Micromachined Polycrystalline Si Thermopiles in a T-shirt

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vladimir Leonov

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available The technology for in-plane poly-Si thermopiles has been developed. The bulk-micromachined thermopiles are located between two Si bars and connected thermally with those bars through thin-film thermal shunts. The patterned strips of thermocouple material together with thermal shunts form bridges between Si bars. Two versions of a thermoelectric generator (TEG with micromachined thermopiles have been assembled and tested on a person’s wrist, and when integrated in a T-shirt. The TEG still produces less than 1 μW in the office, but at ambient temperatures below 11-13 °C it produces more than 1 μW at a voltage of more than 2 V on the matched load. The new way of integration of wearable TEG in clothing is shown. The TEG is located under the textile, and the fabric is used as a flexible radiator.

  7. Filling Transitions in Acute and Open Wedges.

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Malijevský, Alexandr; Parry, A.O.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 91, č. 5 (2015), s. 052401 ISSN 1539-3755 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA13-09914S Grant - others:EPSRC(GB) EP/J009636/1; EPSRC(GB) EP/I019111/1 Institutional support: RVO:67985858 Keywords : wetting transitions * wedges * density functional theory Subject RIV: CF - Physical ; Theoretical Chemistry Impact factor: 2.288, year: 2014

  8. Comments related to infinite wedge representations

    OpenAIRE

    Grieve, Nathan

    2016-01-01

    We study the infinite wedge representation and show how it is related to the universal extension of $g[t,t^{-1}]$ the loop algebra of a complex semi-simple Lie algebra $g$. We also give an elementary proof of the boson-fermion correspondence. Our approach to proving this result is based on a combinatorial construction with partitions combined with an application of the Murnaghan-Nakayama rule.

  9. Elastic wave diffraction by infinite wedges

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fradkin, Larissa; Zernov, Victor [Sound Mathematics Ltd., Cambridge CB4 2AS (United Kingdom); Gautesen, Arthur [Mathematics Department, Iowa State University and Ames Laboratory (United States); Darmon, Michel, E-mail: l.fradkin@soundmathematics.com [CEA-LIST, CEA-Saclay, 91191 Gif-sur-Yvette (France)

    2011-01-01

    We compare two recently developed semi-analytical approaches to the classical problem of diffraction by an elastic two dimensional wedge, one based on the reciprocity principle and Fourier Transform and another, on the representations of the elastodynamic potentials in the form of Sommerfeld Integrals. At present, in their common region of validity, the approaches are complementary, one working better than the other at some isolated angles of incidence.

  10. Artificial intelligence: Collective behaviors of synthetic micromachines

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duan, Wentao

    Synthetic nano- and micromotors function through the conversion of chemical free energy or forms of energy into mechanical motion. Ever since the first reports, such motors have been the subject of growing interest. In addition to motility in response to gradients, these motors interact with each other, resulting in emergent collective behavior like schooling, exclusion, and predator-prey. However, most of these systems only exhibit a single type of collective behavior in response to a certain stimuli. The research projects in the disseratation aim at designing synthetic micromotors that can exhibit transition between various collective behaviors in response to different stimuli, as well as quantitative understanding on the pairwise interaction and propulsion mechanism of such motors. Chapter 1 offers an overview on development of synthetic micromachines. Interactions and collective behaviors of micromotors are also summarized and included. Chapter 2 presents a silver orthophosphate microparticle system that exhibits collective behaviors. Transition between two collective patterns, clustering and dispersion, can be triggered by shift in chemical equilibrium upon the addition or removal of ammonia, in response to UV light, or under two orthogonal stimuli (UV and acoustic field) and powering mechanisms. The transitions can be explained by the self-diffusiophoresis mechanism resulting from either ionic or neutral solute gradients. Potential applications of the reported system in logic gates, microscale pumping, and hierarchical assembly have been demonstrated. Chapter 3 introduces a self-powered oscillatory micromotor system in which active colloids form clusters whose size changes periodically. The system consists of an aqueous suspension of silver orthophosphate particles under UV radiation, in the presence of a mixture of glucose and hydrogen peroxide. The colloid particles first attract with each other to form clusters. After a lag time of around 5min, chemical

  11. Micromachined millimeter-wave photonic band-gap crystals

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Oezbay, E.; Michel, E.; Tuttle, G.; Biswas, R.; Sigalas, M.; Ho, K.

    1994-01-01

    We have developed a new technique for fabricating three-dimensional photonic band-gap crystals. Our method utilizes an orderly stacking of micromachined (110) silicon wafers to build the periodic structure. A structure with a full three-dimensional photonic band gap centered near 100 GHz was measured, with experimental results in good agreement with theoretical predictions. This basic approach described should be extendable to build structures with photonic band-gap frequencies ranging from 30 GHz to 3 THz

  12. Manufacture of Radio Frequency Micromachined Switches with Annealing

    OpenAIRE

    Lin, Cheng-Yang; Dai, Ching-Liang

    2014-01-01

    The fabrication and characterization of a radio frequency (RF) micromachined switch with annealing were presented. The structure of the RF switch consists of a membrane, coplanar waveguide (CPW) lines, and eight springs. The RF switch is manufactured using the complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) process. The switch requires a post-process to release the membrane and springs. The post-process uses a wet etching to remove the sacrificial silicon dioxide layer, and to obtain the suspe...

  13. Localization of observables in the Rindler wedge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asorey, M.; Balachandran, A. P.; Marmo, G.; de Queiroz, A. R.

    2017-11-01

    One of the striking features of QED is that charged particles create a coherent cloud of photons. The resultant coherent state vectors of photons generate a nontrivial representation of the localized algebra of observables that do not support a representation of the Lorentz group: Lorentz symmetry is spontaneously broken. We show in particular that Lorentz boost generators diverge in this representation, a result shown also by Balachandran et al. [Eur. Phys. J. C 75, 89 (2015), 10.1140/epjc/s10052-015-3305-0] (see also the work by Balachandran et al. [Mod. Phys. Lett. A 28, 1350028 (2013), 10.1142/S0217732313500284]. Localization of observables, for example in the Rindler wedge, uses Poincaré invariance in an essential way [Int. J. Geom. Methods Mod. Phys. 14, 1740008 (2017)., 10.1142/S0219887817400084]. Hence, in the presence of charged fields, the photon observables cannot be localized in the Rindler wedge. These observations may have a bearing on the black hole information loss paradox, as the physics in the exterior of the black hole has points of resemblance to that in the Rindler wedge.

  14. High speed micromachining with high power UV laser

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patel, Rajesh S.; Bovatsek, James M.

    2013-03-01

    Increasing demand for creating fine features with high accuracy in manufacturing of electronic mobile devices has fueled growth for lasers in manufacturing. High power, high repetition rate ultraviolet (UV) lasers provide an opportunity to implement a cost effective high quality, high throughput micromachining process in a 24/7 manufacturing environment. The energy available per pulse and the pulse repetition frequency (PRF) of diode pumped solid state (DPSS) nanosecond UV lasers have increased steadily over the years. Efficient use of the available energy from a laser is important to generate accurate fine features at a high speed with high quality. To achieve maximum material removal and minimal thermal damage for any laser micromachining application, use of the optimal process parameters including energy density or fluence (J/cm2), pulse width, and repetition rate is important. In this study we present a new high power, high PRF QuasarR 355-40 laser from Spectra-Physics with TimeShiftTM technology for unique software adjustable pulse width, pulse splitting, and pulse shaping capabilities. The benefits of these features for micromachining include improved throughput and quality. Specific example and results of silicon scribing are described to demonstrate the processing benefits of the Quasar's available power, PRF, and TimeShift technology.

  15. Vascular tissue engineering by computer-aided laser micromachining.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doraiswamy, Anand; Narayan, Roger J

    2010-04-28

    Many conventional technologies for fabricating tissue engineering scaffolds are not suitable for fabricating scaffolds with patient-specific attributes. For example, many conventional technologies for fabricating tissue engineering scaffolds do not provide control over overall scaffold geometry or over cell position within the scaffold. In this study, the use of computer-aided laser micromachining to create scaffolds for vascular tissue networks was investigated. Computer-aided laser micromachining was used to construct patterned surfaces in agarose or in silicon, which were used for differential adherence and growth of cells into vascular tissue networks. Concentric three-ring structures were fabricated on agarose hydrogel substrates, in which the inner ring contained human aortic endothelial cells, the middle ring contained HA587 human elastin and the outer ring contained human aortic vascular smooth muscle cells. Basement membrane matrix containing vascular endothelial growth factor and heparin was to promote proliferation of human aortic endothelial cells within the vascular tissue networks. Computer-aided laser micromachining provides a unique approach to fabricate small-diameter blood vessels for bypass surgery as well as other artificial tissues with complex geometries.

  16. High lane density slab-gel electrophoresis using micromachined instrumentation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papautsky, I; Mohanty, S; Weiss, R; Frazier, A B

    2001-10-01

    In this paper, micromachined pipette arrays (MPAs) and microcombs were studied as a means of enabling high lane density gel electrophoresis. The MPA provide a miniaturized format to interface sub-microliter volumes of samples between macroscale sample preparation formats and microscale biochemical analysis systems. The microcombs provide a means of creating sample loading wells in the gel material on the same center-to-center spacing as the MPAs. Together, the two micromachined instruments provide an alternative to current combs and pipetting technologies used for creating sample loading wells and sample delivery in gel electrophoresis systems. Using three designs for the microcomb-MPA pair, center-to-center spacings of 1.0 mm, 500 microm, and 250 microm are studied. The results demonstrate an approximate 10-fold increase in lane density and a 10-fold reduction in sample size from 5 microL to 500 pL. As a result, the number of theoretical plates has increased 2.5-fold, while system resolution has increased 1.5-fold over the conventional agarose gel systems. An examination of changes in resolution across the width of individual separation lanes in both systems revealed dependence in the case of the conventional gels and no dependence for the gels loaded with the micromachined instrumentation.

  17. Slamming pressures on the bottom of a free-falling vertical wedge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ikeda, C. M.; Judge, C. Q.

    2013-11-01

    High-speed planing boats are subjected to repeat impacts due to slamming, which can cause structural damage and injury to passengers. A first step in understanding and predicting the physics of a craft re-entering the water after becoming partially airborne is an experimental vertical drop test of a prismastic wedge (deadrise angle, β =20° beam, B = 300 mm; and length, L = 600 mm). The acrylic wedge was mounted to a rig allowing it to free-fall into a deep-water tank (5.2m × 5.2m × 4.2m deep) from heights 0 camera (1000 fps, resolution of 1920 × 1200 pixels) is mounted above the wedge model to record the wetted surface as the wedge descended below the free surface. The pressure measurements taken with both conventional surface pressure transducers and the pressure mapping system agree within 10% of the peak pressure values (0.7 bar, typical). Supported by the Office of Naval Research.

  18. Laser Micromachining and Information Discovery Using a Dual Beam Interferometry

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Theppakuttaikomaraswamy, Senthil P. [Iowa State Univ., Ames, IA (United States)

    2001-01-01

    Lasers have proven to be among the most promising tools for micromachining because they can process features down to the size of the laser wavelength (smaller than 1 micrometer) and they provide a non-contact technology for machining. The demand for incorporating in-situ diagnostics technology into the micromachining environment is driven by the increasing need for producing micro-parts of high quality and accuracy. Laser interferometry can be used as an on-line monitoring tool and it is the aim of this work to enhance the understanding and application of Michelson interferometry principle for the in-situ diagnostics of the machining depth on the sub-micron and micron scales. micromachining is done on two different materials and a comprehensive investigation is done to control the width and depth of the machined feature. To control the width of the feature, laser micromachining is done on copper and a detailed analysis is performed. The objective of this experiment is to make a precision mask for sputtering with an array of holes on it using an Nd:YAG laser of 532 nm wavelength. The diameter of the hole is 50 μm and the spacing between holes (the distance between the centers) is 100 μm. Michelson interferometer is integrated with a laser machining system to control the depth of machining. An excimer laser of 308 nm wavelength is used for micromachining. A He-Ne laser of 632.8 nm wavelength is used as the light source for the interferometer. Interference patterns are created due to the change in the path length between the two interferometer arms. The machined depth information is obtained from the interference patterns on an oscilloscope detected by a photodiode. To compare the predicted depth by the interferometer with the true machining depth, a surface profilometer is used to measure the actual machining depth on the silicon. It is observed that the depths of machining obtained by the surface profile measurement are in accordance with the interferometer

  19. Observation of the dispersion of wedge waves propagating along cylinder wedge with different truncations by laser ultrasound technique

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jia, Jing; Zhang, Yu; Han, Qingbang; Jing, Xueping

    2017-10-01

    The research focuses on study the influence of truncations on the dispersion of wedge waves propagating along cylinder wedge with different truncations by using the laser ultrasound technique. The wedge waveguide models with different truncations were built by using finite element method (FEM). The dispersion curves were obtained by using 2D Fourier transformation method. Multiple mode wedge waves were observed, which was well agreed with the results estimated from Lagasse's empirical formula. We established cylinder wedge with radius of 3mm, 20° and 60°angle, with 0μm, 5μm, 10μm, 20μm, 30μm, 40μm, and 50μm truncations, respectively. It was found that non-ideal wedge tip caused abnormal dispersion of the mode of cylinder wedge, the modes of 20° cylinder wedge presents the characteristics of guide waves which propagating along hollow cylinder as the truncation increasing. Meanwhile, the modes of 60° cylinder wedge with truncations appears the characteristics of guide waves propagating along hollow cylinder, and its mode are observed clearly. The study can be used to evaluate and detect wedge structure.

  20. Real-time control of ultrafast laser micromachining by laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tong Tao; Li Jinggao; Longtin, Jon P.

    2004-01-01

    Ultrafast laser micromachining provides many advantages for precision micromachining. One challenging problem, however, particularly for multilayer and heterogeneous materials, is how to prevent a given material from being ablated, as ultrafast laser micromachining is generally material insensitive. We present a real-time feedback control system for an ultrafast laser micromachining system based on laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS). The characteristics of ultrafast LIBS are reviewed and discussed so as to demonstrate the feasibility of the technique. Comparison methods to identify the material emission patterns are developed, and several of the resulting algorithms were implemented into a real-time computer control system. LIBS-controlled micromachining is demonstrated for the fabrication of microheater structures on thermal sprayed materials. Compared with a strictly passive machining process without any such feedback control, the LIBS-based system provides several advantages including less damage to the substrate layer, reduced machining time, and more-uniform machining features

  1. Capacitive micromachined ultrasonic transducer arrays as tunable acoustic metamaterials

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lani, Shane W., E-mail: shane.w.lani@gmail.com, E-mail: karim.sabra@me.gatech.edu, E-mail: levent.degertekin@me.gatech.edu; Sabra, Karim G. [George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, 801Ferst Drive, Georgia 30332-0405 (United States); Wasequr Rashid, M.; Hasler, Jennifer [School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, Van Leer Electrical Engineering Building, 777 Atlantic Drive NW, Atlanta, Georgia 30332-0250 (United States); Levent Degertekin, F. [George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, 801Ferst Drive, Georgia 30332-0405 (United States); School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, Van Leer Electrical Engineering Building, 777 Atlantic Drive NW, Atlanta, Georgia 30332-0250 (United States)

    2014-02-03

    Capacitive Micromachined Ultrasonic Transducers (CMUTs) operating in immersion support dispersive evanescent waves due to the subwavelength periodic structure of electrostatically actuated membranes in the array. Evanescent wave characteristics also depend on the membrane resonance which is modified by the externally applied bias voltage, offering a mechanism to tune the CMUT array as an acoustic metamaterial. The dispersion and tunability characteristics are examined using a computationally efficient, mutual radiation impedance based approach to model a finite-size array and realistic parameters of variation. The simulations are verified, and tunability is demonstrated by experiments on a linear CMUT array operating in 2-12 MHz range.

  2. Micromachined integrated quantum circuit containing a superconducting qubit

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brecht, Teresa; Chu, Yiwen; Axline, Christopher; Pfaff, Wolfgang; Blumoff, Jacob; Chou, Kevin; Krayzman, Lev; Frunzio, Luigi; Schoelkopf, Robert

    We demonstrate a functional multilayer microwave integrated quantum circuit (MMIQC). This novel hardware architecture combines the high coherence and isolation of three-dimensional structures with the advantages of integrated circuits made with lithographic techniques. We present fabrication and measurement of a two-cavity/one-qubit prototype, including a transmon coupled to a three-dimensional microwave cavity micromachined in a silicon wafer. It comprises a simple MMIQC with competitive lifetimes and the ability to perform circuit QED operations in the strong dispersive regime. Furthermore, the design and fabrication techniques that we have developed are extensible to more complex quantum information processing devices.

  3. High-power ultrashort fiber laser for solar cells micromachining

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lecourt, J.-B.; Duterte, C.; Liegeois, F.; Lekime, D.; Hernandez, Y.; Giannone, D.

    2012-02-01

    We report on a high-power ultra-short fiber laser for thin film solar cells micromachining. The laser is based on Chirped Pulse Amplification (CPA) scheme. The pulses are stretched to hundreds of picoseconds prior to amplification and can be compressed down to picosecond at high energy. The repetition rate is adjustable from 100 kHz to 1 MHz and the optical average output power is close to 13 W (before compression). The whole setup is fully fibred, except the compressor achieved with bulk gratings, resulting on a compact and reliable solution for cold ablation.

  4. High-frequency micro-machined power inductors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wang, N.; O'Donnell, T.; Roy, S.; Brunet, M.; McCloskey, P.; O'Mathuna, S.C.

    2005-01-01

    Power inductors have been fabricated on silicon substrates using low-temperature IC compatible processes. The electrical properties of these micro-inductors have been measured and discussed. A maximum quality factor of 6 at 4 MHz has been achieved with an inductance value of about 160 nH. The DC saturation currents of the non-gapped and gapped inductors are ∼500 and 700 mA, respectively. The relatively high Q factor and the load current characteristics allow these micro-machined inductors to be used in integrated power converters

  5. Complex three-dimensional structures in Si{1 0 0} using wet bulk micromachining

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pal, Prem; Sato, Kazuo

    2009-01-01

    Complex three-dimensional structures for microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) are fabricated in Si{1 0 0} wafers using wet bulk micromachining. The structures are divided into two categories: fixed and freestanding. The fabrication processes for both types utilize single wafers with sequentially deposited nitride and oxide layers, local oxidation of silicon (LOCOS) and two steps of wet anisotropic etching. The fixed structures contain perfectly sharp edges. Thermally deposited oxide is used as the material for the freestanding structures. Wet etching is performed in tetramethyl ammonium hydroxide (TMAH) with and without Triton X-100 (C 14 H 22 O(C 2 H 4 O) n , n = 9–10). For the fixed structures, both etching steps are performed either in 25 wt% TMAH + Triton or pure TMAH or both, depending upon the type of the structures. In the case of freestanding systems, TMAH + Triton is utilized first, followed by pure TMAH. The fabrication methods enable densely arrayed structures, allowing the manufacture of corrugated diaphragms, compact size liquid (or gas) flow delivery systems, newly shaped mold for soft MEMS structures (e.g. PDMS (polydimethylsiloxane)) and other applications. The present research is an approach to fabricate advanced MEMS structures, extending the range of 3D structures fabricated by silicon anisotropic etching

  6. Wedge silicon detectors for the inner trackering system of CMS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Catacchini, E.; Civinini, C.; D'Alessandro, R.; Focardi, E.; Meschini, M.; Parrini, G.; Pieri, M.; Wheadon, R.

    1997-01-01

    One ''wedge'' double sided silicon detector prototype for the CMS forward inner tracker has been tested both in laboratory and on a high energy particle beam. The results obtained indicate the most reliable solutions for the strip geometry of the junction side. Three different designs of ''wedge'' double sided detectors with different solutions for the ohmic side strip geometry are presented. (orig.)

  7. Surface Geophysical Measurements for Locating and Mapping Ice-Wedges

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ingeman-Nielsen, Thomas; Tomaskovicova, Sonia; Larsen, S.H.

    2012-01-01

    to test the applicability of DC electrical resistivity tomography (ERT) and Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) to identifying and mapping ice-wedge occurrences. The site is located in Central West Greenland, and the ice-wedges are found in a permafrozen peat soil with an active layer of about 30 cm. ERT...

  8. Beam profiles in the nonwedged direction for dynamic wedges

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lydon, J.M.; Rykers, K.L.

    1996-01-01

    One feature of the dynamic wedge is the improved flatness of the beam profile in the nonwedged direction when compared to fixed wedges. Profiles in the nonwedged direction for fixed wedges show a fall-off in dose away from the central axis when compared to the open field profile. This study will show that there is no significant difference between open field profiles and nonwedged direction profiles for dynamically wedged beams. The implications are that the dynamic wedge offers an improved dose distribution in the nonwedged direction that can be modelled by approximating the dynamically wedged field to an open field. This is possible as both the profiles and depth doses of the dynamically wedged fields match those of the open fields, if normalized to d max of the same field size. For treatment planning purposes the effective wedge factor (EWF) provides a normalization factor for the open field depth dose data set. Data will be presented to demonstrate that the EWF shows relatively little variation with depth and can be treated as being independent of field size in the nonwedged direction. (author)

  9. Tax wedge in Croatia, Austria, Hungary, Poland and Greece

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marin Onorato

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this paper is to compare the tax burden on labour income in Croatia, Austria, Greece, Hungary and Poland in 2013. The Taxing Wages methodology has been applied to hypothetical units across a range of gross wages in order to calculate net average tax wedge, net average tax rate, as well as other relevant indicators. When it comes to single workers without children, the smallest tax wedge for workers earning less than the average gross wage was found in Croatia, while Poland had the smallest tax wedge for above-average wages. Due to a progressive PIT system, the tax wedge for a single worker in Croatia reaches 50% at 400% of the average gross wage, equalling that of Austria, Greece and Hungary. Tax wedges for couples with two children show a similar trend.

  10. Hybrid micromachining using a nanosecond pulsed laser and micro EDM

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Sanha; Chung, Do Kwan; Shin, Hong Shik; Chu, Chong Nam; Kim, Bo Hyun

    2010-01-01

    Micro electrical discharge machining (micro EDM) is a well-known precise machining process that achieves micro structures of excellent quality for any conductive material. However, the slow machining speed and high tool wear are main drawbacks of this process. Though the use of deionized water instead of kerosene as a dielectric fluid can reduce the tool wear and increase the machine speed, the material removal rate (MRR) is still low. In contrast, laser ablation using a nanosecond pulsed laser is a fast and non-wear machining process but achieves micro figures of rather low quality. Therefore, the integration of these two processes can overcome the respective disadvantages. This paper reports a hybrid process of a nanosecond pulsed laser and micro EDM for micromachining. A novel hybrid micromachining system that combines the two discrete machining processes is introduced. Then, the feasibility and characteristics of the hybrid machining process are investigated compared to conventional EDM and laser ablation. It is verified experimentally that the machining time can be effectively reduced in both EDM drilling and milling by rapid laser pre-machining prior to micro EDM. Finally, some examples of complicated 3D micro structures fabricated by the hybrid process are shown

  11. Influence of micromachined targets on laser accelerated proton beam profiles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dalui, Malay; Permogorov, Alexander; Pahl, Hannes; Persson, Anders; Wahlström, Claes-Göran

    2018-03-01

    High intensity laser-driven proton acceleration from micromachined targets is studied experimentally in the target-normal-sheath-acceleration regime. Conical pits are created on the front surface of flat aluminium foils of initial thickness 12.5 and 3 μm using series of low energy pulses (0.5-2.5 μJ). Proton acceleration from such micromachined targets is compared with flat foils of equivalent thickness at a laser intensity of 7 × 1019 W cm-2. The maximum proton energy obtained from targets machined from 12.5 μm thick foils is found to be slightly lower than that of flat foils of equivalent remaining thickness, and the angular divergence of the proton beam is observed to increase as the depth of the pit approaches the foil thickness. Targets machined from 3 μm thick foils, on the other hand, show evidence of increasing the maximum proton energy when the depths of the structures are small. Furthermore, shallow pits on 3 μm thick foils are found to be efficient in reducing the proton beam divergence by a factor of up to three compared to that obtained from flat foils, while maintaining the maximum proton energy.

  12. Laser micromachining of biofactory-on-a-chip devices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burt, Julian P.; Goater, Andrew D.; Hayden, Christopher J.; Tame, John A.

    2002-06-01

    Excimer laser micromachining provides a flexible means for the manufacture and rapid prototyping of miniaturized systems such as Biofactory-on-a-Chip devices. Biofactories are miniaturized diagnostic devices capable of characterizing, manipulating, separating and sorting suspension of particles such as biological cells. Such systems operate by exploiting the electrical properties of microparticles and controlling particle movement in AC non- uniform stationary and moving electric fields. Applications of Biofactory devices are diverse and include, among others, the healthcare, pharmaceutical, chemical processing, environmental monitoring and food diagnostic markets. To achieve such characterization and separation, Biofactory devices employ laboratory-on-a-chip type components such as complex multilayer microelectrode arrays, microfluidic channels, manifold systems and on-chip detection systems. Here we discuss the manufacturing requirements of Biofactory devices and describe the use of different excimer laser micromachined methods both in stand-alone processes and also in conjunction with conventional fabrication processes such as photolithography and thermal molding. Particular attention is given to the production of large area multilayer microelectrode arrays and the manufacture of complex cross-section microfluidic channel systems for use in simple distribution and device interfacing.

  13. Direct writing of microtunnels using proton beam micromachining

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Marot, Laurent; Munnik, Frans; Mikhailov, Serguei

    2006-01-01

    The production of high aspect ratio microstructures is a potential growth area. The combination of deep X-ray lithography with electroforming and micromolding (i.e. LIGA) is one of the main techniques used to produce 3D microstructures. The new technique of proton micromachining employs focused MeV protons in a direct write process which is complementary to LIGA. During ion exposure of positive photoresist like PMMA, scission of molecular chains occurs. These degraded polymer chains are removed by the developer. The aim of this paper is to investigate the capabilities of proton micromachining as a lithographic technique. We show the realization of sub-surface channels, or microtunnels, which have been fabricated in only one exposure and without cutting or resurfacing the material. Using our Van-de-Graaff accelerator, the resist (PMMA) has been exposed with high-energy protons (2.5 MeV). The range of charged particles in matter is well-defined and depends on the energy. Therefore, it is possible to obtain a dose which is sufficient to develop the bottom part of the ion paths but not the top part. Thus, by selecting the energy and the exposure time, a big variety of microtunnels can be realized

  14. Dosimetry verifications of the physical parameters of virtual wedge on a Siemens accelerator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhong Heli; Li Xiaodong; Li Longxing

    2002-01-01

    Objective: To verify the wedge angle of virtual wedge and the relation between wedge factor and beam energy, field size, wedge angle and to study the difference in percent depth dose (PDD) of virtual wedge field, hard wedge field and open field. Methods: Using wedge angle and wedge factor of 15 degree, 30 degree, 45 degree and 60 degree virtual wedge of Siemens Mevatron 6 MV and Primus 8 MV, 18 MV X rays were measured by RFA-plus 3D water phantom and RK finger chamber the PDD of the virtual wedge field, hard wedge field and open field were measured by Kodak XV-2 verifying film and FDM-300 film dosimeter. These PDDs were normalized to Dmax then compared. Results: There was good conformation between virtual wedge measured by four point method and set value. The virtual wedge was almost equal to 1, with a maximal variation of 0.031 no matter what the value of beam energy, field size or wedge angle was. Generally, for certain energy and field size, the wedge factor of larger wedge angle was slightly larger than smaller wedge angle. For certain energy and wedge angle, the wedge factor of larger field was also a little larger than smaller field. The PDD of virtual wedge field was similar to that of open field. Conclusions: The four point method measurement for virtual wedge angle is good for daily QA. Radiotherapy of virtual wedge field is not only simpler than hard wedge field, but also spares the beam output. The PDD conferment between virtual field and open field simplifies radiation treatment planning and increases the accuracy of wedge field therapy

  15. Demonstration of robust micromachined jet technology and its application to realistic flow control problems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chang, Sung Pil [Inha University, Incheon (Korea, Republic of)

    2006-04-15

    This paper describes the demonstration of successful fabrication and initial characterization of micromachined pressure sensors and micromachined jets (microjets) fabricated for use in macro flow control and other applications. In this work, the microfabrication technology was investigated to create a micromachined fluidic control system with a goal of application in practical fluids problems, such as UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle)-scale aerodynamic control. Approaches of this work include : (1) the development of suitable micromachined synthetic jets (microjets) as actuators, which obviate the need to physically extend micromachined structures into an external flow ; and (2) a non-silicon alternative micromachining fabrication technology based on metallic substrates and lamination (in addition to traditional MEMS technologies) which will allow the realization of larger scale, more robust structures and larger array active areas for fluidic systems. As an initial study, an array of MEMS pressure sensors and an array of MEMS modulators for orifice-based control of microjets have been fabricated, and characterized. Both pressure sensors and modulators have been built using stainless steel as a substrate and a combination of lamination and traditional micromachining processes as fabrication technologies.

  16. Demonstration of robust micromachined jet technology and its application to realistic flow control problems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chang, Sung Pil

    2006-01-01

    This paper describes the demonstration of successful fabrication and initial characterization of micromachined pressure sensors and micromachined jets (microjets) fabricated for use in macro flow control and other applications. In this work, the microfabrication technology was investigated to create a micromachined fluidic control system with a goal of application in practical fluids problems, such as UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle)-scale aerodynamic control. Approaches of this work include : (1) the development of suitable micromachined synthetic jets (microjets) as actuators, which obviate the need to physically extend micromachined structures into an external flow ; and (2) a non-silicon alternative micromachining fabrication technology based on metallic substrates and lamination (in addition to traditional MEMS technologies) which will allow the realization of larger scale, more robust structures and larger array active areas for fluidic systems. As an initial study, an array of MEMS pressure sensors and an array of MEMS modulators for orifice-based control of microjets have been fabricated, and characterized. Both pressure sensors and modulators have been built using stainless steel as a substrate and a combination of lamination and traditional micromachining processes as fabrication technologies

  17. Analysis of surface and build up region dose for motorized wedge and omni wedge

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Panta, Raj Kumar; Sundarum, T.

    2008-01-01

    Megavoltage x-ray beam exhibits the well known phenomenon of dose build-up within the first few millimeters of incident phantom surface or skin. The skin sparing effect of high energy gamma or x-ray photon may be reduced or even lost, if the beam is contaminated with electron or low energy photons. Since skin dose in the treatment of deeply seated tumor may be a limiting factor in the delivery of tumoricidal dose due to possible complications such as erythema, desquamation, fibrosis, necrosis and epilation, the dose distribution in the build up region should be known. The objective of this study was to measure and investigate the surface and build-up region dose for 6 MV and 15 MV photon beam for Motorized wedge and Omni wedge in Precise Digital Linear Accelerator (Elekta)

  18. Effects of Lateral Heel Wedges and Lateral Forefoot Wedge on the Knee Adduction Moment in Healthy Male Students

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fatemeh Shamsi

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective: Lateral wedged insoles have been designed to decrease the force applied on the medial knee compartment. The aim of this study was to assess the effects of laterally wedged insoles regarding to the placement of the wedge under the sole (under the heel or under the forefoot on the knee adduction moment and the ground reaction forces. Material & Methods: In this pretest-posttest study, three-dimensional gait analysis was performed on 20 healthy men between 18-30 years old. Knee adduction moment and ground reaction forces were compared among following three types of insoles: a flat insole, a 6˚ laterally inclined heel wedged insole and a 6˚ laterally- inclined forefoot wedged insole. Results: there was no difference between three conditions (flat insole (9.72±1.501, lateral heel wedge (9.866±2.141 and lateral forefoot wedge (9.952±1.986 in peak knee adduction moment (P>0.05. Ground reaction forces and spatiotemporal parameters of gait were not affected by any types of these insoles (P>0.05. Conclusion: Based on the current finding, placement of the lateral wedge under the sole, that is, under the heel or under the forefoot has no effect on the efficacy of these insoles on the adduction moment of the knee and ground reaction forces.

  19. Manual cross check of computed dose times for motorised wedged fields

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Porte, J.

    2001-01-01

    If a mass of tissue equivalent material is exposed in turn to wedged and open radiation fields of the same size, for equal times, it is incorrect to assume that the resultant isodose pattern will be effectively that of a wedge having half the angle of the wedged field. Computer programs have been written to address the problem of creating an intermediate wedge field, commonly known as a motorized wedge. The total exposure time is apportioned between the open and wedged fields, to produce a beam modification equivalent to that of a wedged field of a given wedge angle. (author)

  20. The Tax Wedge in Slovenia: International Comparison and Policy Recommendations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Primož Dolenc

    2005-09-01

    Full Text Available When taxes on labor are introduced, a “tax wedge” appears between the labor costs paid by the employer (gross wage and the net wage received by an employee. At a certain level of wage, a higher tax wedge increases unemployment and decreases employment, all other things being equal. The paper tackles three main questions: the characteristics of the tax wedge, unemployment and employment rates in OECD countries in the recent past, tax wedge policy in the EU15 and the new EU members and the tax system and its effects on the unemployment and employment rates in Slovenia. We found that the OECD countries can be classified into two groups of countries if the tax wedge, the unemployment rate and the employment rate are taken into consideration. The first group is the high tax wedge, high unemployment rate and low employment rate group of countries, whereas the other group has the opposite characteristics. European member states (old and new have on average a higher tax burden on labor than the OECD average, consequently suffering from higher unemployment rates. Slovenia has an unreasonably high tax wedge; in the EU only Belgium and Germany have a higher tax burden. According to previous and our empirical findings we suggest that Slovenia could benefit from a reduction in the tax wedge.

  1. Ultrafast disk technology enables next generation micromachining laser sources

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heckl, Oliver H.; Weiler, Sascha; Luzius, Severin; Zawischa, Ivo; Sutter, Dirk

    2013-02-01

    Ultrashort pulsed lasers based on thin disk technology have entered the 100 W regime and deliver several tens of MW peak power without chirped pulse amplification. Highest uptime and insensitivity to back reflections make them ideal tools for efficient and cost effective industrial micromachining. Frequency converted versions allow the processing of a large variety of materials. On one hand, thin disk oscillators deliver more than 30 MW peak power directly out of the resonator in laboratory setups. These peak power levels are made possible by recent progress in the scaling of the pulse energy in excess of 40 μJ. At the corresponding high peak intensity, thin disk technology profits from the limited amount of material and hence the manageable nonlinearity within the resonator. Using new broadband host materials like for example the sesquioxides will eventually reduce the pulse duration during high power operation and further increase the peak power. On the other hand industry grade amplifier systems deliver even higher peak power levels. At closed-loop controlled 100W, the TruMicro Series 5000 currently offers the highest average ultrafast power in an industry proven product, and enables efficient micromachining of almost any material, in particular of glasses, ceramics or sapphire. Conventional laser cutting of these materials often requires UV laser sources with pulse durations of several nanoseconds and an average power in the 10 W range. Material processing based on high peak power laser sources makes use of multi-photon absorption processes. This highly nonlinear absorption enables micromachining driven by the fundamental (1030 nm) or frequency doubled (515 nm) wavelength of Yb:YAG. Operation in the IR or green spectral range reduces the complexity and running costs of industrial systems initially based on UV light sources. Where UV wavelength is required, the TruMicro 5360 with a specified UV crystal life-time of more than 10 thousand hours of continues

  2. Analysis of Mechanical Energy Transport on Free-Falling Wedge during Water-Entry Phase

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wen-Hua Wang

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available For better discussing and understanding the physical phenomena and body-fluid interaction of water-entry problem, here mechanical-energy transport (wedge, fluid, and each other of water-entry model for free falling wedge is studied by numerical method based on free surface capturing method and Cartesian cut cell mesh. In this method, incompressible Euler equations for a variable density fluid are numerically calculated by the finite volume method. Then artificial compressibility method, dual-time stepping technique, and Roe's approximate Riemann solver are applied in the numerical scheme. Furthermore, the projection method of momentum equations and exact Riemann solution are used to calculate the fluid pressure on solid boundary. On this basis, during water-entry phase of the free-falling wedge, macroscopic energy conversion of overall body-fluid system and microscopic energy transformation in fluid field are analyzed and discussed. Finally, based on test cases, many useful conclusions about mechanical energy transport for water entry problem are made and presented.

  3. Employment and productivity: The role of the tax wedge

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea FESTA

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available After the economic crisis, many countries aim at reducing unemployment and foster productivity. To address these issues one of the most common policy indications recommends lowering the tax wedge on labour in order to increase employment and growth. As a consequence, a review of the empirical studies focused on the relation between tax wedge, employment and productivity is an useful and demanding exercise, especially in those European countries where the topic is on the front page of the domestic policy debate because the productivity growth is low and the tax wedge on labour is high.

  4. Optical wedge method for spatial reconstruction of particle trajectories

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Asatiani, T.L.; Alchudzhyan, S.V.; Gazaryan, K.A.; Zograbyan, D.Sh.; Kozliner, L.I.; Krishchyan, V.M.; Martirosyan, G.S.; Ter-Antonyan, S.V.

    1978-01-01

    A technique of optical wedges allowing the full reconstruction of pictures of events in space is considered. The technique is used for the detection of particle tracks in optical wide-gap spark chambers by photographing in one projection. The optical wedges are refracting right-angle plastic prisms positioned between the camera and the spark chamber so that through them both ends of the track are photographed. A method for calibrating measurements is given, and an estimate made of the accuracy of the determination of the second projection with the help of the optical wedges

  5. Fabrication of piezoresistive microcantilever using surface micromachining technique for biosensors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Na, Kwang-Ho [Department of Electrical Engineering and Nano-Bio Research Center, Myongji University, Yongin, Gyeonggido 449-728 (Korea, Republic of); Kim, Yong-Sang [Department of Electrical Engineering and Nano-Bio Research Center, Myongji University, Yongin, Gyeonggido 449-728 (Korea, Republic of); Kang, C.J. [Department of Physics and Nano-Bio Research Center, Myongji University, San38-2 Namdong, Yongin, Gyeonggido 449-728 (Korea, Republic of)]. E-mail: cjkang@mju.ac.kr

    2005-11-15

    A microcantilever-based biosensor with piezoresistor has been fabricated using surface micromachining technique, which is cost effective and simplifies a fabrication procedure. In order to evaluate the characteristics of the cantilever, the cystamine terminated with thiol was covalently immobilized on the gold-coated side of the cantilever and glutaraldehyde that would be bonded with amine group in the cystamine was injected subsequently. This process was characterized by measuring the deflection of the cantilever in real time monitoring. Using a piezoresistive read-out and a well-known optical beam deflection method as well, the measurement of deflection was carried out. The sensitivity of piezoresistive method is good enough compared with that of optical beam deflection method.

  6. A Micromachined Piezoresistive Pressure Sensor with a Shield Layer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cao, Gang; Wang, Xiaoping; Xu, Yong; Liu, Sheng

    2016-01-01

    This paper presents a piezoresistive pressure sensor with a shield layer for improved stability. Compared with the conventional piezoresistive pressure sensors, the new one reported in this paper has an n-type shield layer that covers p-type piezoresistors. This shield layer aims to minimize the impact of electrical field and reduce the temperature sensitivity of piezoresistors. The proposed sensors have been successfully fabricated by bulk-micromachining techniques. A sensitivity of 0.022 mV/V/kPa and a maximum non-linearity of 0.085% FS are obtained in a pressure range of 1 MPa. After numerical simulation, the role of the shield layer has been experimentally investigated. It is demonstrated that the shield layer is able to reduce the drift caused by electrical field and ambient temperature variation. PMID:27529254

  7. Surface micromachined counter-meshing gears discrimination device

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polosky, Marc A.; Garcia, Ernest J.; Allen, James J.

    2000-12-12

    A surface micromachined Counter-Meshing Gears (CMG) discrimination device which functions as a mechanically coded lock. Each of two CMG has a first portion of its perimeter devoted to continuous driving teeth that mesh with respective pinion gears. Each EMG also has a second portion of its perimeter devoted to regularly spaced discrimination gear teeth that extend outwardly on at least one of three levels of the CMG. The discrimination gear teeth are designed so as to pass each other without interference only if the correct sequence of partial rotations of the CMG occurs in response to a coded series of rotations from the pinion gears. A 24 bit code is normally input to unlock the device. Once unlocked, the device provides a path for an energy or information signal to pass through the device. The device is designed to immediately lock up if any portion of the 24 bit code is incorrect.

  8. Heavy ion beam micromachining on LiNbO3

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nesprias, F.; Venturino, M.; Debray, M.E.; Davidson, J.; Davidson, M.; Kreiner, A.J.; Minsky, D.; Fischer, M.; Lamagna, A.

    2009-01-01

    In this work 3D micromachining of x-cut lithium niobate crystals was performed using the high energy heavy ion microbeam (HIM) at the Tandar Laboratory, Buenos Aires. The samples were machined using 35 Cl beams at 70 MeV bombarding energy combined with wet etching with hydrofluoric acid solutions at room temperature. As the ion beam penetrates the sample, it induces lattice damage increasing dramatically the local etching rate of the material. This technique was applied to the fabrication of 3D waveguides with long control electrodes. The resulting structures indicate that well defined contours with nearly vertical sidewalls can be made. The results also show that with fluences of only 5 x 10 12 ions/cm 2 , this technique is suitable for the fabrication of different shapes of LiNbO 3 control-waveguides that can be used in different optical devices and matched with the existing optical fibers.

  9. Structural design considerations for micromachined solid-oxide fuel cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Srikar, V. T.; Turner, Kevin T.; Andrew Ie, Tze Yung; Spearing, S. Mark

    Micromachined solid-oxide fuel cells (μSOFCs) are among a class of devices being investigated for portable power generation. Optimization of the performance and reliability of such devices requires robust, scale-dependent, design methodologies. In this first analysis, we consider the structural design of planar, electrolyte-supported, μSOFCs from the viewpoints of electrochemical performance, mechanical stability and reliability, and thermal behavior. The effect of electrolyte thickness on fuel cell performance is evaluated using a simple analytical model. Design diagrams that account explicitly for thermal and intrinsic residual stresses are presented to identify geometries that are resistant to fracture and buckling. Analysis of energy loss due to in-plane heat conduction highlights the importance of efficient thermal isolation in microscale fuel cell design.

  10. Micromachined high-performance RF passives in CMOS substrate

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li, Xinxin; Ni, Zao; Gu, Lei; Wu, Zhengzheng; Yang, Chen

    2016-01-01

    This review systematically addresses the micromachining technologies used for the fabrication of high-performance radio-frequency (RF) passives that can be integrated into low-cost complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS)-grade (i.e. low-resistivity) silicon wafers. With the development of various kinds of post-CMOS-compatible microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) processes, 3D structural inductors/transformers, variable capacitors, tunable resonators and band-pass/low-pass filters can be compatibly integrated into active integrated circuits to form monolithic RF system-on-chips. By using MEMS processes, including substrate modifying/suspending and LIGA-like metal electroplating, both the highly lossy substrate effect and the resistive loss can be largely eliminated and depressed, thereby meeting the high-performance requirements of telecommunication applications. (topical review)

  11. A fully packaged micromachined single crystalline resonant force sensor

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cavalloni, C.; Gnielka, M.; Berg, J. von [Kistler Instrumente AG, Winterthur (Switzerland); Haueis, M.; Dual, J. [ETH Zuerich, Inst. of Mechanical Systems, Zuerich (Switzerland); Buser, R. [Interstate Univ. of Applied Science Buchs, Buchs (Switzerland)

    2001-07-01

    In this work a fully packaged resonant force sensor for static load measurements is presented. The working principle is based on the shift of the resonance frequency in response to the applied load. The heart of the sensor, the resonant structure, is fabricated by micromachining using single crystalline silicon. To avoid creep and hysteresis and to minimize temperature induced stress the resonant structure is encapsulated using an all-in-silicon solution. This means that the load coupling, the excitation of the microresonator and the detection of the oscillation signal are integrated in only one single crystalline silicon chip. The chip is packaged into a specially designed housing made of steel which has been designed with respect to application in harsh environments. The unloaded sensor has an initial frequency of about 22,5 kHz. The sensitivity amounts to 26 Hz/N with a linearity error significantly less than 0,5%FSO. (orig.)

  12. Surface micromachined counter-meshing gears discrimination device

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Polosky, M.A.; Garcia, E.J.; Allen, J.J.

    1998-01-01

    This paper discusses the design, fabrication and testing of a surface micromachined Counter-Meshing Gears (CMG) discrimination device which functions as a mechanically coded lock, A 24 bit code is input to unlock the device. Once unlocked, the device provides a path for an energy or information signal to pass through the device. The device is designed to immediately lock up if any portion of the 24 bit code is incorrect. The motivation for the development of this device is based on occurrences referred to as High Consequence Events, A High Consequence Event is an event where an inadvertent operation of a system could result in the catastrophic loss of life, property, or damage to the environment

  13. Characterization of bulk-micromachined direct-bonded silicon nanofilters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tu, Jay K.; Huen, Tony; Szema, Robert; Ferrari, Mauro

    1998-03-01

    The ability to separate 30-100 nm particles - nanofiltration - is critical for many biomedical applications. Where this filtration needs to be absolute, such as for viral elimination in the blood fractionation process, the large variations in pore size found with conventional polymeric filters can lead to the unwanted presence of viruses in the filtrate. To overcome this problem, we have developed a filter with micromachined channels sandwiched between two bonded silicon wafers. These channels are formed through the selective deposition and then removal of a thermally-grown oxide, the thickness of which can be controlled to +/- 4 percent for 30 nm pores. In this paper, we will present both the gas and liquid characterization, and the filtration studies done on 44 and 100 nm beads.

  14. Performance Enhancement of the Patch Antennas Applying Micromachining Technology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohamed N. Azermanesh

    2007-09-01

    Full Text Available This paper reports on the application of micromachining technology for performance enhancement of two types of compact antennas which are becoming a common practice in microsystems. Shorted patch antennas (SPA and folded shorted patch antennas operating in the 5-6 GHz ISM band, with intended application in short-range wireless communications, are considered. The electrical length of antennas are modified by etching the substrate of the antennas, thus providing a new degree of freedom to control the antenna operating properties, which is the main novelty of our work. The gain and bandwidth of the antennas are increased by increasing the etching depth. However, etching the substrate affects the operating frequency as well. To keep the operating frequency at a pre-specified value, the dimension of the antennas must be increased by deepening the etching depth. Therefore, a trade off between the performance enhancement of the antennas and the dimensional enlargement is required.

  15. 3D capacitive tactile sensor using DRIE micromachining

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chuang, Chiehtang; Chen, Rongshun

    2005-07-01

    This paper presents a three dimensional micro capacitive tactile sensor that can detect normal and shear forces which is fabricated using deep reactive ion etching (DRIE) bulk silicon micromachining. The tactile sensor consists of a force transmission plate, a symmetric suspension system, and comb electrodes. The sensing character is based on the changes of capacitance between coplanar sense electrodes. High sensitivity is achieved by using the high aspect ratio interdigital electrodes with narrow comb gaps and large overlap areas. The symmetric suspension mechanism of this sensor can easily solve the coupling problem of measurement and increase the stability of the structure. In this paper, the sensor structure is designed, the capacitance variation of the proposed device is theoretically analyzed, and the finite element analysis of mechanical behavior of the structures is performed.

  16. The Influence of Coating Structure on Micromachine Stiction

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kushmerick, J.G.; Hankins, M.G.; De Boer, M.P.; Clews, P.J.; Carpick, R.W.; Bunker, B.C.

    2000-10-03

    We have clearly shown that the film morphology dictates the anti-stiction properties of FDTS coatings. Release stiction is not observed when ideal monolayer films are present but can be extensive when thicker aggregate structures are present. This finding is significant because it indicates that agglomerate formation during processing is a major source of irreproducible behavior when FDTS coatings are used to release micromachined parts. The results could also help explain why coatings that are aged at high. humidity start to stick to each other. (AFM results show that humid environments promote the formation of aggregates from monolayer films.) The reason why aggregate structures promote stiction is currently unknown. However, it appears that aggregates interfere with the ability of FDTS to form dense, well-ordered coatings under microstructures, leading to surfaces that are sufficiently hydrophilic to allow for release stiction via an attractive Laplace force during drying.

  17. Fabrication of Microhotplates Based on Laser Micromachining of Zirconium Oxide

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oblov, Konstantin; Ivanova, Anastasia; Soloviev, Sergey; Samotaev, Nikolay; Lipilin, Alexandr; Vasiliev, Alexey; Sokolov, Andrey

    We present a novel approach to the fabrication of MEMS devices, which can be used for gas sensors operating in harsh environment in wireless and autonomous information systems. MEMS platforms based on ZrO2/Y2O3 (YSZ) are applied in these devices. The methods of ceramic MEMS devices fabrication with laser micromachining are considered. It is shown that the application of YSZ membranes permits a decrease in MEMS power consumption at 4500C down to ∼75 mW at continuous heating and down to ∼ 1 mW at pulse heating mode. The application of the platforms is not restricted by gas sensors: they can be used for fast thermometers, bolometric matrices, flowmeteres and other MEMS devices working under harsh environmental conditions.

  18. Capacitive micromachined ultrasonic transducers for medical imaging and therapy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Khuri-Yakub, Butrus T; Oralkan, Ömer

    2011-01-01

    Capacitive micromachined ultrasonic transducers (CMUTs) have been subject to extensive research for the last two decades. Although they were initially developed for air-coupled applications, today their main application space is medical imaging and therapy. This paper first presents a brief description of CMUTs, their basic structure and operating principles. Our progression of developing several generations of fabrication processes is discussed with an emphasis on the advantages and disadvantages of each process. Monolithic and hybrid approaches for integrating CMUTs with supporting integrated circuits are surveyed. Several prototype transducer arrays with integrated front-end electronic circuits we developed and their use for 2D and 3D, anatomical and functional imaging, and ablative therapies are described. The presented results prove the CMUT as a micro-electro-mechanical systems technology for many medical diagnostic and therapeutic applications

  19. Micromachining Lithium Niobate for Rapid Prototyping of Resonant Biosensors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Al-Shibaany, Zeyad Yousif Abdoon; Hedley, John; Huo, Dehong; Hu, Zhongxu

    2014-01-01

    Lithium niobate material is widely used in MEMS application due to its piezoelectric properties. This paper presents the micromachining process of lithium niobate to rapid prototype a resonant biosensor design. A high precision CNC machine was used to machine a sample of lithium niobate material at 5 different spindle speeds to find out the best conditions to machine this brittle material. A qualitative visual check of the surface was performed by using scanning electron microscopy, surface roughness was quantitatively investigated using an optical surface profiler and Raman spectroscopy to check the strain of the surface. Results show that the surface quality of the lithium niobate was significantly affected by the spindle speed with optimum conditions at 70k rpm giving a strained surface with 500 nm rms roughness

  20. Capacitive micromachined ultrasonic transducers for medical imaging and therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khuri-Yakub, Butrus T; Oralkan, Omer

    2011-05-01

    Capacitive micromachined ultrasonic transducers (CMUTs) have been subject to extensive research for the last two decades. Although they were initially developed for air-coupled applications, today their main application space is medical imaging and therapy. This paper first presents a brief description of CMUTs, their basic structure, and operating principles. Our progression of developing several generations of fabrication processes is discussed with an emphasis on the advantages and disadvantages of each process. Monolithic and hybrid approaches for integrating CMUTs with supporting integrated circuits are surveyed. Several prototype transducer arrays with integrated frontend electronic circuits we developed and their use for 2-D and 3-D, anatomical and functional imaging, and ablative therapies are described. The presented results prove the CMUT as a MEMS technology for many medical diagnostic and therapeutic applications.

  1. Solid polymer electrolyte composite membrane comprising laser micromachined porous support

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Han [Waltham, MA; LaConti, Anthony B [Lynnfield, MA; Mittelsteadt, Cortney K [Natick, MA; McCallum, Thomas J [Ashland, MA

    2011-01-11

    A solid polymer electrolyte composite membrane and method of manufacturing the same. According to one embodiment, the composite membrane comprises a rigid, non-electrically-conducting support, the support preferably being a sheet of polyimide having a thickness of about 7.5 to 15 microns. The support has a plurality of cylindrical pores extending perpendicularly between opposing top and bottom surfaces of the support. The pores, which preferably have a diameter of about 5 microns, are made by laser micromachining and preferably are arranged in a defined pattern, for example, with fewer pores located in areas of high membrane stress and more pores located in areas of low membrane stress. The pores are filled with a first solid polymer electrolyte, such as a perfluorosulfonic acid (PFSA) polymer. A second solid polymer electrolyte, which may be the same as or different than the first solid polymer electrolyte, may be deposited over the top and/or bottom of the first solid polymer electrolyte.

  2. Analysis and prediction of dimensions and cost of laser micro-machining internal channel fabrication process

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brabazon D.

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents the utilisation of Response Surface Methodology (RSM as the prediction tool for the laser micro-machining process. Laser internal microchannels machined using pulsed Nd:YVO4 laser in polycarbonate were investigated. The experiments were carried out according to 33 factorial Design of Experiment (DoE. In this work the three input process set as control parameters were laser power, P; pulse repetition frequency, PRF; and sample translation speed, U. Measured responses were the channel width and the micro-machining operating cost per metre of produced microchannels. The responses were sufficiently predicted within the set micro-machining parameters limits. Two factorial interaction (2FI and quadratic polynomial regression equations for both responses were constructed. It is proposed that the developed prediction equations can be used to find locally optimal micro-machining process parameters under experimental and operational conditions.

  3. Manufacturing microsystems-on-a-chip with 5-level surface micromachining technology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sniegowski, J.; Rodgers, M.S.

    1998-05-01

    An agile microsystem manufacturing technology has been developed that provides unprecedented 5 levels of independent polysilicon surface-micromachine films for the designer. Typical surface-micromachining processes offer a maximum of 3 levels, making this the most complex surface-micromachining process technology developed to date. Leveraged from the extensive infrastructure present in the microelectronics industry, the manufacturing method of polysilicon surface-micromachining offers similar advantages of high-volume, high-reliability, and batch-fabrication to microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) as has been accomplished with integrated circuits (ICs). These systems, comprised of microscopic-sized mechanical elements, are laying the foundation for a rapidly expanding, multi-billion dollar industry 2 which impacts the automotive, consumer product, and medical industries to name only a few.

  4. Micromachined thin-film sensors for SOI-CMOS co-integration

    CERN Document Server

    Laconte, Jean; Raskin, Jean-Pierre

    2006-01-01

    Co-integration of MEMS and MOS in SOI technology is promising and well demonstrated hereThe impact of Micromachining on SOI devices is deeply analyzed for the first timeInclude extensive TMAH etching, residual stress, microheaters, gas-flow sensors reviewResidual stresses in thin films need to be more and more monitored in MEMS designsTMAH micromachining is an attractive alternative to KOH.

  5. Physichal parameters for wedge filters used in radiotherapy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Strunga, Emil

    1995-01-01

    Wedge filters using in radiotherapy up two important problems: attenuation of gamma rays introduced by the presence of wedge filters and spinning of isodoses curves plate. Depending of irradiation geometry, characterised by D w , - source filter distance, D c - source dose's estimate point distance, a - side of irradiation field; nature and size filter: α - wedge angle, μ - linear adsorption coefficient, ε - filter cover attenuation w - filter side, and nature of target volume characterised by μ' - linear absorption coefficient of medium has been estimated absorption factor of wedge filter (k w ) for two irradiation geometry: and spinning angle of isodose plate (Θ): 3) tg θ (μD w (μ'D c - 2 Calculated values has been compared with the experimental measured values, for a cobaltotherapy unit Rokus-M, and the result was that between the two series of dates it is a good concordance

  6. Pilot Study: Foam Wedge Chin Support Static Tolerance Testing

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-10-24

    AFRL-SA-WP-SR-2017-0026 Pilot Study: Foam Wedge Chin Support Static Tolerance Testing Austin M. Fischer, BS1; William W...COVERED (From – To) April – October 2017 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE Pilot Study: Foam Wedge Chin Support Static Tolerance Testing 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER...PROJECT NUMBER 5e. TASK NUMBER 5f. WORK UNIT NUMBER 7. PERFORMING ORGANIZATION NAME(S) AND ADDRESS(ES) USAF School of Aerospace

  7. Scattering of wedges and cones with impedance boundary conditions

    CERN Document Server

    Lyalinov, Mikhail

    2012-01-01

    This book is a systematic and detailed exposition of different analytical techniques used in studying two of the canonical problems, the wave scattering by wedges or cones with impedance boundary conditions. It is the first reference on novel, highly efficient analytical-numerical approaches for wave diffraction by impedance wedges or cones. The applicability of the reported solution procedures and formulae to existing software packages designed for real-world high-frequency problems encountered in antenna, wave propagation, and radar cross section.

  8. Studying the mechanism of micromachining by short pulsed laser

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gadag, Shiva

    The semiconductor materials like Si and the transparent dielectric materials like glass and quartz are extensively used in optoelectronics, microelectronics, and microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) industries. The combination of these materials often go hand in hand for applications in MEMS such as in chips for pressure sensors, charge coupled devices (CCD), and photovoltaic (PV) cells for solar energy generation. The transparent negative terminal of the solar cell is made of glass on one surface of the PV cell. The positive terminal (cathode) on the other surface of the solar cell is made of silicon with a glass negative terminal (anode). The digital watches and cell phones, LEDs, micro-lens, optical components, and laser optics are other examples for the application of silicon and or glass. The Si and quartz are materials extensively used in CCD and LED for digital cameras and CD players respectively. Hence, three materials: (1) a semiconductor silicon and transparent dielectrics,- (2) glass, and (3) quartz are chosen for laser micromachining as they have wide spread applications in microelectronics industry. The Q-switched, nanosecond pulsed lasers are most extensively used for micro-machining. The nanosecond type of short pulsed laser is less expensive for the end users than the second type, pico or femto, ultra-short pulsed lasers. The majority of the research work done on these materials (Si, SiO 2, and glass) is based on the ultra-short pulsed lasers. This is because of the cut quality, pin point precision of the drilled holes, formation of the nanometer size microstructures and fine features, and minimally invasive heat affected zone. However, there are many applications such as large surface area dicing, cutting, surface cleaning of Si wafers by ablation, and drilling of relatively large-sized holes where some associated heat affected zone due to melting can be tolerated. In such applications the nanosecond pulsed laser ablation of materials is very

  9. A Novel Silicon Micromachined Integrated MCM Thermal Management System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kazmierczak, M. J.; Henderson, H. T.; Gerner, F. M.

    1997-01-01

    "Micromachining" is a chemical means of etching three-dimensional structures, typically in single- crystalline silicon. These techniques are leading toward what is coming to be referred to as MEMS (Micro Electro Mechanical Systems), where in addition to the ordinary two-dimensional (planar) microelectronics, it is possible to build three-dimensional n-ticromotors, electrically- actuated raicrovalves, hydraulic systems and much more on the same microchip. These techniques become possible because of differential etching rates of various crystallographic planes and materials used for semiconductor n-ticrofabfication. The University of Cincinnati group in collaboration with Karl Baker at NASA Lewis were the first to form micro heat pipes in silicon by the above techniques. Current work now in progress using MEMS technology is now directed towards the development of the next generation in MCM (Multi Chip Module) packaging. Here we propose to develop a complete electronic thermal management system which will allow densifica6on in chip stacking by perhaps two orders of magnitude. Furthermore the proposed technique will allow ordinary conu-nercial integrated chips to be utilized. Basically, the new technique involves etching square holes into a silicon substrate and then inserting and bonding commercially available integrated chips into these holes. For example, over a 100 1/4 in. by 1 /4 in. integrated chips can be placed on a 4 in. by 4 in. silicon substrate to form a Multi-Chip Module (MCM). Placing these MCM's in-line within an integrated rack then allows for three-diniensional stacking. Increased miniaturization of microelectronic circuits will lead to very high local heat fluxes. A high performance thermal management system will be specifically designed to remove the generated energy. More specifically, a compact heat exchanger with milli / microchannels will be developed and tested to remove the heat through the back side of this MCM assembly for moderate and high

  10. Fiscal 1996 report on technological results. R and D on micromachine technology; 1996 nendo micromachine gijutsu no kenkyu kaihatsu seika hokokusho

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1998-03-01

    Researches on basic element technology of micromachines are conducted that operate autonomously in a narrow small part in a complicated apparatus or in vivo. The areas of activity are (1) research on micromachine systems, (2) a subminiature liquid synthesizing system, and (3) comprehensive investigation and research. In (1), the researches were carried out on the miniaturization and functional combination of a micro laser catheter and a micro tactile sensor catheter, which are the primary components of a coeliac diagnostic and therapeutic system, a 'micro catheter for cerebral blood vessel/treatment', as a micromachine system in the medical field. In (2), R and D was conducted on a system element technology assuming it contributed to a subminiature liquid synthesizing system capable of preparing various liquids including pharmaceuticals accurately with a trace amount. In (3), examination was made on the application area of a micromachine system with priority given to a medical field and also on technological subjects to be tapped, as well as on the contents of (2), with a device installed for evaluating the operating characteristic of a distribution type fluid actuator as needed for the development. (NEDO)

  11. The evolving energy budget of accretionary wedges

    Science.gov (United States)

    McBeck, Jessica; Cooke, Michele; Maillot, Bertrand; Souloumiac, Pauline

    2017-04-01

    The energy budget of evolving accretionary systems reveals how deformational processes partition energy as faults slip, topography uplifts, and layer-parallel shortening produces distributed off-fault deformation. The energy budget provides a quantitative framework for evaluating the energetic contribution or consumption of diverse deformation mechanisms. We investigate energy partitioning in evolving accretionary prisms by synthesizing data from physical sand accretion experiments and numerical accretion simulations. We incorporate incremental strain fields and cumulative force measurements from two suites of experiments to design numerical simulations that represent accretionary wedges with stronger and weaker detachment faults. One suite of the physical experiments includes a basal glass bead layer and the other does not. Two physical experiments within each suite implement different boundary conditions (stable base versus moving base configuration). Synthesizing observations from the differing base configurations reduces the influence of sidewall friction because the force vector produced by sidewall friction points in opposite directions depending on whether the base is fixed or moving. With the numerical simulations, we calculate the energy budget at two stages of accretion: at the maximum force preceding the development of the first thrust pair, and at the minimum force following the development of the pair. To identify the appropriate combination of material and fault properties to apply in the simulations, we systematically vary the Young's modulus and the fault static and dynamic friction coefficients in numerical accretion simulations, and identify the set of parameters that minimizes the misfit between the normal force measured on the physical backwall and the numerically simulated force. Following this derivation of the appropriate material and fault properties, we calculate the components of the work budget in the numerical simulations and in the

  12. Diffusion induced flow on a wedge-shaped obstacle

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zagumennyi, Ia V; Dimitrieva, N F

    2016-01-01

    In this paper the problem of evolution of diffusion induced flow on a wedge-shaped obstacle is analyzed numerically. The governing set of fundamental equations is solved using original solvers from the open source OpenFOAM package on supercomputer facilities. Due to breaking of naturally existing diffusion flux of a stratifying agent by the impermeable surface of the wedge a complex multi-level vortex system of compensatory fluid motions is formed around the obstacle. Sharp edges of the obstacle generate extended high-gradient horizontal interfaces which are clearly observed in laboratory experiments by high-resolution Schlieren visualization. Formation of an intensive pressure depression zone in front of the leading vertex of the wedge is responsible for generation of propulsive force resulting in a self-displacement of the obstacle along the neutral buoyancy horizon in a stably stratified environment. The size of the pressure deficiency area near the sharp vertex of a concave wedge is about twice that for a convex one. This demonstrates a more intensive propulsion mechanism in case of the concave wedge and, accordingly, a higher velocity of its self-movement in a continuously stratified medium. (paper)

  13. Casimir effect for a semitransparent wedge and an annular piston

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Milton, Kimball A.; Wagner, Jef; Kirsten, Klaus

    2009-01-01

    We consider the Casimir energy due to a massless scalar field in a geometry of an infinite wedge closed by a Dirichlet circular cylinder, where the wedge is formed by δ-function potentials, so-called semitransparent boundaries. A finite expression for the Casimir energy corresponding to the arc and the presence of both semitransparent potentials is obtained, from which the torque on the sidewalls can be derived. The most interesting part of the calculation is the nontrivial nature of the angular mode functions. Numerical results are obtained which are closely analogous to those recently found for a magnetodielectric wedge, with the same speed of light on both sides of the wedge boundaries. Alternative methods are developed for annular regions with radial semitransparent potentials, based on reduced Green's functions for the angular dependence, which allows calculations using the multiple-scattering formalism. Numerical results corresponding to the torque on the radial plates are likewise computed, which generalize those for the wedge geometry. Generally useful formulas for calculating Casimir energies in separable geometries are derived.

  14. Review of piezoelectric micromachined ultrasonic transducers and their applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jung, Joontaek; Lee, Wonjun; Kang, Woojin; Shin, Eunjung; Choi, Hongsoo; Ryu, Jungho

    2017-01-01

    In recent decades, micromachined ultrasonic transducers (MUTs) have been investigated as an alternative to conventional piezocomposite ultrasonic transducers, primarily due to the advantages that microelectromechanical systems provide. Miniaturized ultrasonic systems require ultrasonic transducers integrated with complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor circuits. Hence, piezoelectric MUTs (pMUTs) and capacitive MUTs (cMUTs) have been developed as the most favorable solutions. This paper reviews the basic equations to understand the characteristics of thin-film-based piezoelectric devices and presents recent research on pMUTs, including current approaches and limitations. Methods to improve the coupling coefficient of pMUTs are also investigated, such as device structure, materials, and fabrication techniques. The device structure improvements include multielectrode pMUTs, partially clamped boundary conditions, and 3D pMUTs (curved and domed types), where the latter can provide an electromechanical coupling coefficient of up to 45%. The piezoelectric coefficient ( e 31 ) can be increased by controlling the crystal texture (seed layer of γ -Al 2 O 3 ), using single-crystal (PMN-PT) materials, or control of residual stresses (using SiO 2 layer). Arrays of pMUTs can be implemented for various applications including intravascular ultrasound, fingerprint sensors, rangefinders in air, and wireless power supply systems. pMUTs are expected to be an ideal solution for applications such as mobile biometric security (fingerprint sensors) and rangefinders due to their superior power efficiency and compact size. (topical review)

  15. Micromachined force sensors using thin film nickel–chromium piezoresistors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nadvi, Gaviraj S; Butler, Donald P; Çelik-Butler, Zeynep; Gönenli, İsmail Erkin

    2012-01-01

    Micromachined force/tactile sensors using nickel–chromium piezoresistors have been investigated experimentally and through finite-element analysis. The force sensors were designed with a suspended aluminum oxide (Al 2 O 3 ) membrane and optimally placed piezoresistors to measure the strain in the membrane when deflected with an applied force. Different devices, each with varying size and shape of both the membrane and the piezoresistors, were designed, fabricated and characterized. The piezoresistors were placed into a half-Wheatstone bridge configuration with two active and two passive nickel–chromium resistors to provide temperature drift compensation. The force sensors were characterized using a load cell and a nanopositioner to measure the sensor response with applied load. Piezoresistive gauge factors in the range of 1–5.2 have been calculated for the thin film nichrome (NiCr 80/20 wt%) from the measured results. The force sensors were calculated to have a noise equivalent force of 65–245 nN. (paper)

  16. Development of a Novel Transparent Flexible Capacitive Micromachined Ultrasonic Transducer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Da-Chen Pang

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents the world’s first transparent flexible capacitive micromachined ultrasonic transducer (CMUT that was fabricated through a roll-lamination technique. This polymer-based CMUT has advantages of transparency, flexibility, and non-contacting detection which provide unique functions in display panel applications. Comprising an indium tin oxide-polyethylene terephthalate (ITO-PET substrate, SU-8 sidewall and vibrating membranes, and silver nanowire transparent electrode, the transducer has visible-light transmittance exceeding 80% and can operate on curved surfaces with a 40 mm radius of curvature. Unlike the traditional silicon-based high temperature process, the CMUT can be fabricated on a flexible substrate at a temperature below 100 °C to reduce residual stress introduced at high temperature. The CMUT on the curved surfaces can detect a flat target and finger at distances up to 50 mm and 40 mm, respectively. The transparent flexible CMUT provides a better human-machine interface than existing touch panels because it can be integrated with a display panel for non-contacting control in a health conscious environment and the flexible feature is critical for curved display and wearable electronics.

  17. Generation of programmable temporal pulse shape and applications in micromachining

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, X.; Jordens, B.; Hooper, A.; Baird, B. W.; Ren, W.; Xu, L.; Sun, L.

    2009-02-01

    In this paper we presented a pulse shaping technique on regular solid-state lasers and the application in semiconductor micromachining. With a conventional Q-switched laser, all of the parameters can be adjusted over only limited ranges, especially the pulse width and pulse shape. However, some laser link processes using traditional laser pulses with pulse widths of a few nanoseconds to a few tens of nanoseconds tend to over-crater in thicker overlying passivation layers and thereby cause IC reliability problems. Use of a laser pulse with a special shape and a fast leading edge, such as tailored pulse, is one technique for controlling link processing. The pulse shaping technique is based on light-loop controlled optical modulation to shape conventional Q-switched solid-state lasers. One advantage of the pulse shaping technique is to provide a tailored pulse shape that can be programmed to have more than one amplitude value. Moreover, it has the capability of providing programmable tailored pulse shapes with discrete amplitude and time duration components. In addition, it provides fast rising and fall time of each pulse at fairly high repetition rate at 355nm with good beam quality. The regular-to-shaped efficiency is up to 50%. We conclude with a discussion of current results for laser processing of semiconductor memory link structures using programmable temporal pulse shapes. The processing experiments showed promising results with shaped pulse.

  18. Silicon micromachining using a high-density plasma source

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McAuley, S.A.; Ashraf, H.; Atabo, L.; Chambers, A.; Hall, S.; Hopkins, J.; Nicholls, G.

    2001-01-01

    Dry etching of Si is critical in satisfying the demands of the micromachining industry. The micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS) community requires etches capable of high aspect ratios, vertical profiles, good feature size control and etch uniformity along with high throughput to satisfy production requirements. Surface technology systems' (STS's) high-density inductively coupled plasma (ICP) etch tool enables a wide range of applications to be realized whilst optimizing the above parameters. Components manufactured from Si using an STS ICP include accelerometers and gyroscopes for military, automotive and domestic applications. STS's advanced silicon etch (ASE TM ) has also allowed the first generation of MEMS-based optical switches and attenuators to reach the marketplace. In addition, a specialized application for fabricating the next generation photolithography exposure masks has been optimized for 200 mm diameter wafers, to depths of ∼750 μm. Where the profile is not critical, etch rates of greater than 8 μm min -1 have been realized to replace previous methods such as wet etching. This is also the case for printer applications. Specialized applications that require etching down to pyrex or oxide often result in the loss of feature size control at the interface; this is an industry wide problem. STS have developed a technique to address this. The rapid progression of the industry has led to development of the STS ICP etch tool, as well as the process. (author)

  19. Manufacture of Radio Frequency Micromachined Switches with Annealing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cheng-Yang Lin

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The fabrication and characterization of a radio frequency (RF micromachined switch with annealing were presented. The structure of the RF switch consists of a membrane, coplanar waveguide (CPW lines, and eight springs. The RF switch is manufactured using the complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS process. The switch requires a post-process to release the membrane and springs. The post-process uses a wet etching to remove the sacrificial silicon dioxide layer, and to obtain the suspended structures of the switch. In order to improve the residual stress of the switch, an annealing process is applied to the switch, and the membrane obtains an excellent flatness. The finite element method (FEM software CoventorWare is utilized to simulate the stress and displacement of the RF switch. Experimental results show that the RF switch has an insertion loss of 0.9 dB at 35 GHz and an isolation of 21 dB at 39 GHz. The actuation voltage of the switch is 14 V.

  20. Manufacture of radio frequency micromachined switches with annealing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Cheng-Yang; Dai, Ching-Liang

    2014-01-17

    The fabrication and characterization of a radio frequency (RF) micromachined switch with annealing were presented. The structure of the RF switch consists of a membrane, coplanar waveguide (CPW) lines, and eight springs. The RF switch is manufactured using the complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) process. The switch requires a post-process to release the membrane and springs. The post-process uses a wet etching to remove the sacrificial silicon dioxide layer, and to obtain the suspended structures of the switch. In order to improve the residual stress of the switch, an annealing process is applied to the switch, and the membrane obtains an excellent flatness. The finite element method (FEM) software CoventorWare is utilized to simulate the stress and displacement of the RF switch. Experimental results show that the RF switch has an insertion loss of 0.9 dB at 35 GHz and an isolation of 21 dB at 39 GHz. The actuation voltage of the switch is 14 V.

  1. Giant flexoelectric polarization in a micromachined ferroelectric diaphragm

    KAUST Repository

    Wang, Zhihong

    2012-08-14

    The coupling between dielectric polarization and strain gradient, known as flexoelectricity, becomes significantly large on the micro- and nanoscale. Here, it is shown that giant flexoelectric polarization can reverse remnant ferroelectric polarization in a bent Pb(Zr0.52Ti0.48) O3 (PZT) diaphragm fabricated by micromachining. The polarization induced by the strain gradient and the switching behaviors of the polarization in response to an external electric field are investigated by observing the electromechanical coupling of the diaphragm. The method allows determination of the absolute zero polarization state in a PZT film, which is impossible using other existing methods. Based on the observation of the absolute zero polarization state and the assumption that bending of the diaphragm is the only source of the self-polarization, the upper bound of flexoelectric coefficient of PZT film is calculated to be as large as 2.0 × 10-4 C m -1. The strain gradient induced by bending the diaphragm is measured to be on the order of 102 m-1, three orders of magnitude larger than that obtained in the bulk material. Because of this large strain gradient, the estimated giant flexoelectric polarization in the bent diaphragm is on the same order of magnitude as the normal remnant ferroelectric polarization of PZT film. Copyright © 2013 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  2. Receive-Noise Analysis of Capacitive Micromachined Ultrasonic Transducers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bozkurt, Ayhan; Yaralioglu, G Goksenin

    2016-11-01

    This paper presents an analysis of thermal (Johnson) noise received from the radiation medium by otherwise noiseless capacitive micromachined ultrasonic transducer (CMUT) membranes operating in their fundamental resonance mode. Determination of thermal noise received by multiple numbers of transducers or a transducer array requires the assessment of cross-coupling through the radiation medium, as well as the self-radiation impedance of the individual transducer. We show that the total thermal noise received by the cells of a CMUT has insignificant correlation, and is independent of the radiation impedance, but is only determined by the mass of each membrane and the electromechanical transformer ratio. The proof is based on the analytical derivations for a simple transducer with two cells, and extended to transducers with numerous cells using circuit simulators. We used a first-order model, which incorporates the fundamental resonance of the CMUT. Noise power is calculated by integrating over the entire spectrum; hence, the presented figures are an upper bound for the noise. The presented analyses are valid for a transimpedance amplifier in the receive path. We use the analysis results to calculate the minimum detectable pressure of a CMUT. We also provide an analysis based on the experimental data to show that output noise power is limited by and comparable to the theoretical upper limit.

  3. A Micromachined Infrared Senor for an Infrared Focal Plane Array

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seong M. Cho

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available A micromachined infrared sensor for an infrared focal plane array has been designed and fabricated. Amorphous silicon was used as a sensing material, and silicon nitride was used as a membrane material. To get a good absorption in infrared range, the sensor structure was designed as a l/4 cavity structure. A Ni-Cr film was selected as an electrode material and mixed etching scheme was applied in the patterning process of the Ni-Cr electrode. All the processes were made in 0.5 μm iMEMS fabricated in the Electronics and Telecommunication Research Institute (ETRI. The processed MEMS sensor had a small membrane deflection less than 0.15 μm. This small deflection can be attributed to the rigorous balancing of the stresses of individual layers. The efficiency of infrared absorption was more than 75% in the wavelength range of 8 ~ 14 μm. The processed infrared sensor showed high responsivity of ~230 kV/W at 1.0V bias and 2 Hz operation condition. The time constant of the sensor was 8.6 msec, which means that the sensor is suitable to be operated in 30 Hz frame rate.

  4. Resonant gravimetric immunosensing based on capacitive micromachined ultrasound transducers

    KAUST Repository

    Viržonis, Darius

    2014-04-08

    High-frequency (40 MHz) and low-frequency (7 MHz) capacitive micromachined ultrasound transducers (CMUT) were fabricated and tested for use in gravimetric detection of biomolecules. The low-frequency CMUT sensors have a gold-coated surface, while the high-frequency sensors have a silicon nitride surface. Both surfaces were functionalized with bovine leukemia virus antigen gp51 acting as the antigen. On addition of an a specific antibody labeled with horseradish peroxidase (HRP), the antigen/antibody complex is formed on the surface and quantified by HRP-catalyzed oxidation of tetramethylbenzidine. It has been found that a considerably smaller quantity of immuno complex is formed on the high frequency sensor surface. In parallel, the loading of the surface of the CMUT was determined via resonance frequency and electromechanical resistance readings. Following the formation of the immuno complexes, the resonance frequencies of the low-frequency and high-frequency sensors decrease by up to 420 and 440 kHz, respectively. Finite element analysis reveals that the loading of the (gold-coated) low frequency sensors is several times larger than that on high frequency sensors. The formation of the protein film with pronounced elasticity and stress on the gold surface case is discussed. We also discuss the adoption of this method for the detection of DNA using a hybridization assay following polymerase chain reaction.

  5. Review of piezoelectric micromachined ultrasonic transducers and their applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jung, Joontaek; Lee, Wonjun; Kang, Woojin; Shin, Eunjung; Ryu, Jungho; Choi, Hongsoo

    2017-11-01

    In recent decades, micromachined ultrasonic transducers (MUTs) have been investigated as an alternative to conventional piezocomposite ultrasonic transducers, primarily due to the advantages that microelectromechanical systems provide. Miniaturized ultrasonic systems require ultrasonic transducers integrated with complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor circuits. Hence, piezoelectric MUTs (pMUTs) and capacitive MUTs (cMUTs) have been developed as the most favorable solutions. This paper reviews the basic equations to understand the characteristics of thin-film-based piezoelectric devices and presents recent research on pMUTs, including current approaches and limitations. Methods to improve the coupling coefficient of pMUTs are also investigated, such as device structure, materials, and fabrication techniques. The device structure improvements include multielectrode pMUTs, partially clamped boundary conditions, and 3D pMUTs (curved and domed types), where the latter can provide an electromechanical coupling coefficient of up to 45%. The piezoelectric coefficient (e 31) can be increased by controlling the crystal texture (seed layer of γ-Al2O3), using single-crystal (PMN-PT) materials, or control of residual stresses (using SiO2 layer). Arrays of pMUTs can be implemented for various applications including intravascular ultrasound, fingerprint sensors, rangefinders in air, and wireless power supply systems. pMUTs are expected to be an ideal solution for applications such as mobile biometric security (fingerprint sensors) and rangefinders due to their superior power efficiency and compact size.

  6. Macrodesign for microdevices: Polysilicon surface-micromachining technology, applications and issues

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sniegowski, J.J. [Sandia National Labs., Albuquerque, NM (United States). Intelligent Micromachine Dept.

    1997-05-01

    The intent of this tutorial is to overview the technology of multi-level polysilicon surface micromachining, to present examples of devices which fully utilize this level of complexity, and to discuss what they believe to be significant issues which are not fully resolved. Following this intent, the tutorial consists of four sections. The first is an introduction and description of multi-level polysilicon surface micromachining and its potential benefits. Specifically, the inclusion of a third deposited layer of mechanical polysilicon greatly extends the degree of complexity available for micromechanism design. The second section introduces wafer planarization by CMP as a process tool for surface micromachining. The third section presents examples of actuated geared micromechanisms which require the multi-level fabrication process. Demonstration of actuation mechanisms coupled to external devices are illustrated. Finally, polysilicon surface micromachining fabrication technology has reached a level where many device designs, for the most part, can be embodied in the technology to produce a mechanical construct which provides the desired function. When designed properly, the fabricated mechanical element, if free to operate, will produce the desired function. However, one set of issues which can hinder or prevent operation are related to the post-fabricated device surfaces. These surface issues; namely, stiction, friction, and wear, are emphasized in the final section as a major hindrance to realizing the full potential of surface micromachined devices.

  7. Effect of fluorocarbon self-assembled monolayer films on sidewall adhesion and friction of surface micromachines with impacting and sliding contact interfaces

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Xiang, H.; Komvopoulos, K.

    2013-01-01

    A self-assembled monolayer film consisting of fluoro-octyltrichlorosilane (FOTS) was vapor-phase deposited on Si(100) substrates and polycrystalline silicon (polysilicon) surface micromachines. The hydrophobic behavior and structural composition of the FOTS film deposited on Si(100) were investigated by goniometry and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, respectively. The effects of contact pressure, relative humidity, temperature, and impact/sliding cycles on the adhesive and friction behavior of uncoated and FOTS-coated polysilicon micromachines (referred to as the Si and FOTS/Si micromachines, respectively) were investigated under controlled loading and environmental conditions. FOTS/Si micromachines demonstrated much lower and stable adhesion than Si micromachines due to the highly hydrophobic and conformal FOTS film. Contrary to Si micromachines, sidewall adhesion of FOTS/Si micromachines demonstrated a weak dependence on relative humidity, temperature, and impact cycles. In addition, FOTS/Si micromachines showed low and stable adhesion and low static friction for significantly more sliding cycles than Si micromachines. The adhesive and static friction characteristics of Si and FOTS/Si micromachines are interpreted in the context of physicochemical surface changes, resulting in the increase of the real area of contact and a hydrophobic-to-hydrophilic transition of the surface chemical characteristics caused by nanoscale surface smoothening and the removal of the organic residue (Si micromachines) or the FOTS film (FOTS/Si micromachines) during repetitive impact and oscillatory sliding of the sidewall surfaces.

  8. Modeling and Stability Analysis of Wedge Clutch System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jian Yao

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available A wedge clutch with unique features of self-reinforcement and small actuation force was designed. Its self-reinforcement feature, associated with different factors such as the wedge angle and friction coefficient, brings different dynamics and unstable problem with improper parameters. To analyze this system, a complete mathematical model of the actuation system is built, which includes the DC motor, the wedge mechanism, and the actuated clutch pack. By considering several nonlinear factors, such as the slip-stick friction and the contact or not of the clutch plates, the system is piecewise linear. Through the stability analysis of the linearized system in clutch slipping phase, the stable condition of the designed parameters is obtained as α>arctan⁡(μc. The mathematical model of the actuation system is validated by prototype testing. And with the validated model, the system dynamics in both stable and unstable conditions is investigated and discussed in engineering side.

  9. Multiple phases and vicious walkers in a wedge

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gesualdo Delfino

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available We consider a statistical system in a planar wedge, for values of the bulk parameters corresponding to a first order phase transition and with boundary conditions inducing phase separation. Our previous exact field theoretical solution for the case of a single interface is extended to a class of systems, including the Blume–Capel model as the simplest representative, allowing for the appearance of an intermediate layer of a third phase. We show that the interfaces separating the different phases behave as trajectories of vicious walkers, and determine their passage probabilities. We also show how the theory leads to a remarkable form of wedge covariance, i.e. a relation between properties in the wedge and in the half plane, which involves the appearance of self-Fourier functions.

  10. Tax wedge in Croatia, Belgium, Estonia, Germany and Slovakia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Gabrilo

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this paper is to analyse the taxation of labour income in Croatia, Belgium,Estonia, Germany and Slovakia. Having presented an outline of tax system rules, the paper shows the decomposition of the net average tax wedge for different family types and different income levels based on the OECD methodology. The results show that all observed countries apply a progressive tax schedule, apart from Germany where taxation for higher gross wages is not progressive due to a  cap on the SIC base. When it comes to a taxpayer earning an average gross wage, a Croatian single worker without children has the lowest tax burden, followed by Estonia, Slovakia, Germany and Belgium. However, as regards taxpayers earning 400% of AGW, Estonia has the smallest tax wedge, followed by Slovakia, Germany, Croatia and Belgium. Similar results are obtained by analyzing the tax wedge for couples with two children where one spouse is out of work.

  11. New Transition Wedge Design Composed by Prefabricated Reinforced Concrete Slabs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julia Real-Herráiz

    Full Text Available Abstract Important track degradation occurs in structure-embankment transitions, in which an abrupt change in track vertical stiffness arises, leading to a reduction in passengers comfort and safety. Although granular wedges are suggested by different railroad administrations as a solution to avoid these problems, they present some disadvantages which may affect track long-term performance. In this paper, a new solution designed with prefabricated reinforced concrete slabs is proposed. The aim of this solution is to guarantee a continuous and gradual track vertical stiffness transition in the vicinity of structures, overcoming granular wedges disadvantages. The aim of this study is to assess the performance of the novel wedge design by means of a 3-D FEM model and to compare it with the current solution.

  12. Capillary surfaces in a wedge: Differing contact angles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Concus, Paul; Finn, Robert

    1994-01-01

    The possible zero-gravity equilibrium configurations of capillary surfaces u(x, y) in cylindrical containers whose sections are (wedge) domains with corners are investigated mathematically, for the case in which the contact angles on the two sides of the wedge may differ. In such a situation the behavior can depart in significant qualitative ways from that for which the contact angles on the two sides are the same. Conditions are described under which such qualitative changes must occur. Numerically computed surfaces are depicted to indicate the behavior.

  13. Three-dimensional wedge filling in ordered and disordered systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Greenall, M J; Parry, A O; Romero-Enrique, J M

    2004-01-01

    We investigate interfacial structural and fluctuation effects occurring at continuous filling transitions in 3D wedge geometries. We show that fluctuation-induced wedge covariance relations that have been reported recently for 2D filling and wetting have mean-field or classical analogues that apply to higher-dimensional systems. Classical wedge covariance emerges from analysis of filling in shallow wedges based on a simple interfacial Hamiltonian model and is supported by detailed numerical investigations of filling within a more microscopic Landau-like density functional theory. Evidence is presented that classical wedge covariance is also obeyed for filling in more acute wedges in the asymptotic critical regime. For sufficiently short-ranged forces mean-field predictions for the filling critical exponents and covariance are destroyed by pseudo-one-dimensional interfacial fluctuations. We argue that in this filling fluctuation regime the critical exponents describing the divergence of length scales are related to values of the interfacial wandering exponent ζ(d) defined for planar interfaces in (bulk) two-dimensional (d = 2) and three-dimensional (d = 3) systems. For the interfacial height l w ∼ θ-α) -β w , with θ the contact angle and α the wedge tilt angle, we find β w = ζ(2)/2(1-ζ(3)). For pure systems (thermal disorder) we recover the known result β w = 1/4 predicted by interfacial Hamiltonian studies whilst for random-bond disorder we predict the universal critical exponent β ∼ even in the presence of dispersion forces. We revisit the transfer matrix theory of three-dimensional filling based on an effective interfacial Hamiltonian model and discuss the interplay between breather, tilt and torsional interfacial fluctuations. We show that the coupling of the modes allows the problem to be mapped onto a quantum mechanical problem as conjectured by previous authors. The form of the interfacial height probability distribution function predicted by

  14. Tool life of ceramic wedges during precise turning of tungsten

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Legutko Stanislaw

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Properties, application and machinability of tungsten and its alloys have been demonstrated. The comparison of the tool life and wear of the wedges made of SiAlON and whisker ceramics during the precise turning at different cutting parameters have been presented. The CNC lathe DMG CTX 310 Ecoline and tungsten of 99.7 % purity were used during the experiments. Only the wedge of whisker ceramics has proved to be sufficiently suitable and only for relatively low cutting speeds.

  15. First reliability test of a surface micromachined microengine using SHiMMeR

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tanner, D.M.; Smith, N.F.; Bowman, D.J. [and others

    1997-08-01

    The first-ever reliability stress test on surface micromachined microengines developed at Sandia National Laboratories (SNL) has been completed. We stressed 41 microengines at 36,000 RPM and inspected the functionality at 60 RPM. We have observed an infant mortality region, a region of low failure rate (useful life), and no signs of wearout in the data. The reliability data are presented and interpreted using standard reliability methods. Failure analysis results on the stressed microengines are presented. In our effort to study the reliability of MEMS, we need to observe the failures of large numbers of parts to determine the failure modes. To facilitate testing of large numbers of micromachines. The Sandia High Volume Measurement of Micromachine Reliability (SHiMMeR) system has computer controlled positioning and the capability to inspect moving parts. The development of this parallel testing system is discussed in detail.

  16. Assessing strain mapping by electron backscatter diffraction and confocal Raman microscopy using wedge-indented Si

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Friedman, Lawrence H.; Vaudin, Mark D.; Stranick, Stephan J.; Stan, Gheorghe; Gerbig, Yvonne B.; Osborn, William; Cook, Robert F.

    2016-01-01

    The accuracy of electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD) and confocal Raman microscopy (CRM) for small-scale strain mapping are assessed using the multi-axial strain field surrounding a wedge indentation in Si as a test vehicle. The strain field is modeled using finite element analysis (FEA) that is adapted to the near-indentation surface profile measured by atomic force microscopy (AFM). The assessment consists of (1) direct experimental comparisons of strain and deformation and (2) comparisons in which the modeled strain field is used as an intermediate step. Direct experimental methods (1) consist of comparisons of surface elevation and gradient measured by AFM and EBSD and of Raman shifts measured and predicted by CRM and EBSD, respectively. Comparisons that utilize the combined FEA–AFM model (2) consist of predictions of distortion, strain, and rotation for comparison with EBSD measurements and predictions of Raman shift for comparison with CRM measurements. For both EBSD and CRM, convolution of measurements in depth-varying strain fields is considered. The interconnected comparisons suggest that EBSD was able to provide an accurate assessment of the wedge indentation deformation field to within the precision of the measurements, approximately 2×10"−"4 in strain. CRM was similarly precise, but was limited in accuracy to several times this value. - Highlights: • We map strain by electron backscatter diffraction and confocal Raman microscopy. • The test vehicle is the multi-axial strain field of wedge-indented silicon. • Strain accuracy is assessed by direct experimental intercomparison. • Accuracy is also assessed by atomic force microscopy and finite element analyses. • Electron diffraction measurements are accurate; Raman measurements need refinement.

  17. Assessing strain mapping by electron backscatter diffraction and confocal Raman microscopy using wedge-indented Si

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Friedman, Lawrence H.; Vaudin, Mark D.; Stranick, Stephan J.; Stan, Gheorghe; Gerbig, Yvonne B.; Osborn, William; Cook, Robert F., E-mail: robert.cook@nist.gov

    2016-04-15

    The accuracy of electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD) and confocal Raman microscopy (CRM) for small-scale strain mapping are assessed using the multi-axial strain field surrounding a wedge indentation in Si as a test vehicle. The strain field is modeled using finite element analysis (FEA) that is adapted to the near-indentation surface profile measured by atomic force microscopy (AFM). The assessment consists of (1) direct experimental comparisons of strain and deformation and (2) comparisons in which the modeled strain field is used as an intermediate step. Direct experimental methods (1) consist of comparisons of surface elevation and gradient measured by AFM and EBSD and of Raman shifts measured and predicted by CRM and EBSD, respectively. Comparisons that utilize the combined FEA–AFM model (2) consist of predictions of distortion, strain, and rotation for comparison with EBSD measurements and predictions of Raman shift for comparison with CRM measurements. For both EBSD and CRM, convolution of measurements in depth-varying strain fields is considered. The interconnected comparisons suggest that EBSD was able to provide an accurate assessment of the wedge indentation deformation field to within the precision of the measurements, approximately 2×10{sup −4} in strain. CRM was similarly precise, but was limited in accuracy to several times this value. - Highlights: • We map strain by electron backscatter diffraction and confocal Raman microscopy. • The test vehicle is the multi-axial strain field of wedge-indented silicon. • Strain accuracy is assessed by direct experimental intercomparison. • Accuracy is also assessed by atomic force microscopy and finite element analyses. • Electron diffraction measurements are accurate; Raman measurements need refinement.

  18. Proton beam micromachining on strippable aqueous base developable negative resist

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rajta, I.; Uzonyi, I.; Baradacs, E.; Chatzichristidi, M.; Raptis, I.; Valamontes, E.S.

    2004-01-01

    Complete text of publication follows. Proton Beam Micromachining (PBM, also known as P-beam writing), a novel direct- write process for the production of 3D microstructures, can be used to make multilevel structures in a single layer of resist by varying the ion energy. The interaction between the bombarding ions and the target material is mainly ionization, and very few ions suffer high angle nuclear collisions, therefore structures made with PBM have smooth near vertical side walls. The most commony applied resists in PBM are the positive, conventional, polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA); and the negative, chemically amplified, SU-8 (Micro Chem Corp). SU-8 is an epoxy based resist suitable also for LIGA and UV-LIGA processes, it offers good sensitivity, good process latitude, very high aspect ratio and therefore it dominates in the high aspect ratio micromachining applications. SU-8 requires 30 nC/mm 2 fluence for PBM irradiations at 2 MeV protons. Its crosslinking chemistry is based on the eight epoxy rings in the polymer chain, which provide a very dense three dimensional network in the presence of suitably activated photo acid generators (PAGs) which is very difficult to be stripped away after development. Thus, stripping has to be assisted with plasma processes or with special liquid removers. Moreover, the SU-8 developer is organic, propylene glycol methyl ether acetate (PGMEA), and thus environmentally non-friendly. To overcome the SU-8 stripping limitations, design of a negative resist system where solubility change is not based solely on cross- linking but also on the differentiation of hydrophilicity between exposed and non-exposed areas is desirable. A new resist formulation, fulfilling the above specifications has been developed recently [1]. This formulation is based on a specific grade epoxy novolac (EP) polymer, a partially hydrogenated poly-4-hydroxy styrene (PHS) polymer, and an onium salt as photoacid generator (PAG), and has been successfully

  19. Intracardiac ultrasound scanner using a micromachine (MEMS) actuator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zara, J M; Bobbio, S M; Goodwin-Johansson, S; Smith, S W

    2000-01-01

    Catheter-based intracardiac ultrasound offers the potential for improved guidance of interventional cardiac procedures. The objective of this research is the development of catheter-based mechanical sector scanners incorporating high frequency ultrasound transducers operating at frequencies up to 20 MHz. The authors' current transducer assembly consists of a single 1.75 mm by 1.75 mm, 20 MHz, PZT element mounted on a 2 mm by 2 mm square, 75 mum thick polyimide table that pivots on 3-mum thick gold plated polyimide hinges. The hinges also serve as the electrical connections to the transducer. This table-mounted transducer is tilted using a miniature linear actuator to produce a sector scan. This linear actuator is an integrated force array (IFA), which is an example of a micromachine, i.e., a microelectromechanical system (MEMS). The IFA is a thin (2.2 mum) polyimide membrane, which consists of a network of hundreds of thousands of micron scale deformable capacitors made from pairs of metallized polyimide plates. IFAs contract with an applied voltage of 30-120 V and have been shown to produce strains as large as 20% and forces of up to 8 dynes. The prototype transducer and actuator assembly was fabricated and interfaced with a GagePCI analog to digital conversion board digitizing 12 bit samples at a rate of 100 MSamples/second housed in a personal computer to create a single channel ultrasound scanner. The deflection of the table transducer in a low viscosity insulating fluid (HFE 7100, 3M) is up to +/-10 degrees at scan rates of 10-60 Hz. Software has been developed to produce real-time sector scans on the PC monitor.

  20. Chemical vapor detection using a capacitive micromachined ultrasonic transducer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Hyunjoo J; Park, Kwan Kyu; Kupnik, Mario; Oralkan, O; Khuri-Yakub, Butrus T

    2011-12-15

    Distributed sensing of gas-phase chemicals using highly sensitive and inexpensive sensors is of great interest for many defense and consumer applications. In this paper we present ppb-level detection of dimethyl methylphosphonate (DMMP), a common simulant for sarin gas, with a ppt-level resolution using an improved capacitive micromachined ultrasonic transducer (CMUT) as a resonant chemical sensor. The improved CMUT operates at a higher resonant frequency of 47.7 MHz and offers an improved mass sensitivity of 48.8 zg/Hz/μm(2) by a factor of 2.7 compared to the previous CMUT sensors developed. A low-noise oscillator using the CMUT resonant sensor as the frequency-selective device was developed for real-time sensing, which exhibits an Allan deviation of 1.65 Hz (3σ) in the presence of a gas flow; this translates into a mass resolution of 80.5 zg/μm(2). The CMUT resonant sensor is functionalized with a 50-nm thick DKAP polymer developed at Sandia National Laboratory for dimethyl methylphosphonate (DMMP) detection. To demonstrate ppb-level detection of the improved chemical sensor system, the sensor performance was tested at a certified lab (MIT Lincoln Laboratory), which is equipped with an experimental chemical setup that reliably and accurately delivers a wide range of low concentrations down to 10 ppb. We report a high volume sensitivity of 34.5 ± 0.79 pptv/Hz to DMMP and a good selectivity of the polymer to DMMP with respect to dodecane and 1-octanol.

  1. Micromachined fiber optic Fabry-Perot underwater acoustic probe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Fuyin; Shao, Zhengzheng; Hu, Zhengliang; Luo, Hong; Xie, Jiehui; Hu, Yongming

    2014-08-01

    One of the most important branches in the development trend of the traditional fiber optic physical sensor is the miniaturization of sensor structure. Miniature fiber optic sensor can realize point measurement, and then to develop sensor networks to achieve quasi-distributed or distributed sensing as well as line measurement to area monitoring, which will greatly extend the application area of fiber optic sensors. The development of MEMS technology brings a light path to address the problems brought by the procedure of sensor miniaturization. Sensors manufactured by MEMS technology possess the advantages of small volume, light weight, easy fabricated and low cost. In this paper, a fiber optic extrinsic Fabry-Perot interferometric underwater acoustic probe utilizing micromachined diaphragm collaborated with fiber optic technology and MEMS technology has been designed and implemented to actualize underwater acoustic sensing. Diaphragm with central embossment, where the embossment is used to anti-hydrostatic pressure which would largely deflect the diaphragm that induce interferometric fringe fading, has been made by double-sided etching of silicon on insulator. By bonding the acoustic-sensitive diaphragm as well as a cleaved fiber end in ferrule with an outer sleeve, an extrinsic Fabry-Perot interferometer has been constructed. The sensor has been interrogated by quadrature-point control method and tested in field-stable acoustic standing wave tube. Results have been shown that the recovered signal detected by the sensor coincided well with the corresponding transmitted signal and the sensitivity response was flat in frequency range from 10 Hz to 2kHz with the value about -154.6 dB re. 1/μPa. It has been manifest that the designed sensor could be used as an underwater acoustic probe.

  2. New technique for fabrication of high frequency piezoelectric Micromachined Ultrasound Transducers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, T; Thomsen, Erik Vilain; Zawada, T

    2008-01-01

    A novel technique for fabrication of linear arrays of high frequency piezoelectric Micromachined Ultrasound Transducers (pMUT) on silicon substrates is presented. Piezoelectric elements are formed by deposition of PZT ((PbZrxTi1-x)O3) into etched features of the silicon substrate such that the de......A novel technique for fabrication of linear arrays of high frequency piezoelectric Micromachined Ultrasound Transducers (pMUT) on silicon substrates is presented. Piezoelectric elements are formed by deposition of PZT ((PbZrxTi1-x)O3) into etched features of the silicon substrate...

  3. Flow Analysis for the Falkner–Skan Wedge Flow

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bararnia, H; Haghparast, N; Miansari, M

    2012-01-01

    In this article an analytical technique, namely the homotopy analysis method (HAM), is applied to solve the momentum and energy equations in the case of a two-dimensional incompressible flow passing over a wedge. The trail and error method and Padé approximation strategies have been used to obtai...

  4. Dependence of wedge transmission factor on co-60 teletherapy ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Measuring the wedge factor (WF) for radiation field of 10 x 10 cm2 at a specified depth and Source to Surface Distance (SSD), and applying the value to all treatment depths and technique could introduce errors > ± 5 % of threshold stipulated for patient radiation dose delivery. Therefore, some Treatment Planning Systems ...

  5. Thoracoscopic pulmonary wedge resection without post-operative chest drain

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Holbek, Bo Laksafoss; Hansen, Henrik Jessen; Kehlet, Henrik

    2016-01-01

    %) patients had a pneumothorax of mean size 12 ± 12 mm on supine 8-h post-operative X-ray for which the majority resolved spontaneously within 2-week control. There were no complications on 30-day follow-up. Median length of stay was 1 day. CONCLUSIONS: The results support that VATS wedge resection...

  6. Fixed Points of Maps of a Nonaspherical Wedge

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Merrill Keith

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Let be a finite polyhedron that has the homotopy type of the wedge of the projective plane and the circle. With the aid of techniques from combinatorial group theory, we obtain formulas for the Nielsen numbers of the selfmaps of .

  7. Complex Wedge-Shaped Matrices: A Generalization of Jacobi Matrices

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hnětynková, Iveta; Plešinger, M.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 487, 15 December (2015), s. 203-219 ISSN 0024-3795 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA13-06684S Keywords : eigenvalues * eigenvector * wedge-shaped matrices * generalized Jacobi matrices * band (or block) Krylov subspace methods Subject RIV: BA - General Mathematics Impact factor: 0.965, year: 2015

  8. The Hardy inequality and the heat flow in curved wedges

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Krejčiřík, David

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 73, č. 2 (2016), s. 91-113 ISSN 0032-5155 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA14-06818S Institutional support: RVO:61389005 Keywords : Hardy inequality * heat equation * large-time behaviour * curved wedges * Dirichlet Laplacian * conical singularities * Brownian motion * subcriticality Subject RIV: BE - Theoretical Physics Impact factor: 0.735, year: 2016

  9. Si Micro-turbine by Proton BeamWriting and Porous Silicon Micromachining

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rajta, I.; Szilasi, S.Z.; Fekete, Z.

    2008-01-01

    Complete text of publication follows. A 3D Si micro-turbine characterized by high aspect ratio vertical walls was formed by the combination of proton beam writing (PBW) and subsequent selective porous Si (PS) etching. Crystal damages generated by the implanted protons result in increased resistivity, thereby limit or even prevent the current to flow through the implanted area during electrochemical etching. Characteristic feature of the proposed process is that the shape of the micro electromechanical (MEMS) components is defined by two implantation energies. A higher energy is applied for defining the housing of the device while the lower energy is used to write the moving components. The implantation energies were selected such as to result appropriate difference between the two projected ranges, thereby providing structures with different height after development. The thickness of the walls of the moving component and the isotropic etching profile of the electrochemical PS formation was also taken into consideration. The electrochemical etching is driven until the sacrificial PS layer completely under etches the moving components, but the etch-front does not reach the bottom of the housing. Therefore, the dissolution of PS results in a ready-to-operate device with a released moving component embedded in the cavity of the housing. The operation of the encapsulated device fabricated by the two-energy implantation is successfully demonstrated (Fig. 1). Rotation speed of the device is estimated in the range of thousands rpm, however, further analysis of the novel structure optimized for performance and MEMS compatible assembly will be done and precise characteristics will be determined by adequate optical read-out method. The feasibility of Proton Beam Writing combined with Porous Si Micromachining and conventional Si processing steps was successfully demonstrated by fabricating Si microturbine chip. The aligned, two-energy proton beam implantation can provide high

  10. Therapy by stationary photon fields from a 42 MeV betatron using wedge filters

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wicke, L.; Kaercher, K.H.; Naesiger, H.; Prokosch, E.; Vienna Univ.

    1975-01-01

    The dose distribution in photon beams from a 42 MeV betatron using wedge filters of lead with different angles of slope is described. The wedge coefficient to be considered at a field size of 10 x 10 cm is given. The scope for isodoses modified by wedge filters is discussed with regard to stationary-field photon therapy. (orig.) [de

  11. A practical method to calculate head scatter factors in wedged rectangular and irregular MLC shaped beams for external and internal wedges

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Georg, Dietmar; Olofsson, Joergen; Kuenzler, Thomas; Aiginger, Hannes; Karlsson, Mikael

    2004-01-01

    Factor based methods for absorbed dose or monitor unit calculations are often based on separate data sets for open and wedged beams. The determination of basic beam parameters can be rather time consuming, unless equivalent square methods are applied. When considering irregular wedged beams shaped with a multileaf collimator, parametrization methods for dosimetric quantities, e.g. output ratios or wedge factors as a function of field size and shape, become even more important. A practical method is presented to derive wedged output ratios in air (S c,w ) for any rectangular field and for any irregular MLC shaped beam. This method was based on open field output ratios in air (S c ) for a field with the same collimator setting, and a relation f w between S c,w and S c . The relation f w can be determined from measured output ratios in air for a few open and wedged fields including the maximum wedged field size. The function f w and its parametrization were dependent on wedge angle and treatment head design, i.e. they were different for internal and external wedges. The proposed method was tested for rectangular wedged fields on three accelerators with internal wedges (GE, Elekta, BBC) and two accelerators with external wedges (Varian). For symmetric regular beams the average deviation between calculated and measured S c,w /S c ratios was 0.3% for external wedges and about 0.6% for internal wedges. Maximum deviations of 1.8% were obtained for elongated rectangular fields on the GE and ELEKTA linacs with an internal wedge. The same accuracy was achieved for irregular MLC shaped wedged beams on the accelerators with MLC and internal wedges (GE and Elekta), with an average deviation <1% for the fields tested. The proposed method to determine output ratios in air for wedged beams from output ratios of open beams, combined with equivalent square approaches, can be easily integrated in empirical or semi-empirical methods for monitor unit calculations

  12. Bending-induced electromechanical coupling and large piezoelectric response in a micromachined diaphragm

    KAUST Repository

    Wang, Zhihong; Yao, Yingbang; Wang, Xianbin; Yue, Weisheng; Chen, Longqing; Zhang, Xixiang

    2013-01-01

    We investigated the dependence of electromechanical coupling and the piezoelectric response of a micromachined Pb(Zr 0.52 Ti 0.48)O 3 (PZT) diaphragm on its curvature by observing the impedance spectrum and central deflection responses to a small AC

  13. Femtosecond laser micromachining of polylactic acid/graphene composites for designing interdigitated microelectrodes for sensor applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paula, Kelly T.; Gaál, Gabriel; Almeida, G. F. B.; Andrade, M. B.; Facure, Murilo H. M.; Correa, Daniel S.; Riul, Antonio; Rodrigues, Varlei; Mendonça, Cleber R.

    2018-05-01

    There is an increasing interest in the last years towards electronic applications of graphene-based materials and devices fabricated from patterning techniques, with the ultimate goal of high performance and temporal resolution. Laser micromachining using femtosecond pulses is an attractive methodology to integrate graphene-based materials into functional devices as it allows changes to the focal volume with a submicrometer spatial resolution due to the efficient nonlinear nature of the absorption, yielding rapid prototyping for innovative applications. We present here the patterning of PLA-graphene films spin-coated on a glass substrate using a fs-laser at moderate pulse energies to fabricate interdigitated electrodes having a minimum spatial resolution of 5 μm. Raman spectroscopy of the PLA-graphene films indicated the presence of multilayered graphene fibers. Subsequently, the PLA-graphene films were micromachined using a femtosecond laser oscillator delivering 50-fs pulses and 800 nm, where the pulse energy and scanning speed was varied in order to determine the optimum irradiation parameters (16 nJ and 100 μm/s) to the fabrication of microstructures. The micromachined patterns were characterized by optical microscopy and submitted to electrical measurements in liquid samples, clearly distinguishing all tastes tested. Our results confirm the femtosecond laser micromachining technique as an interesting approach to efficiently pattern PLA-graphene filaments with high precision and minimal mechanical defects, allowing the easy fabrication of interdigitated structures and an alternative method to those produced by conventional photolithography.

  14. A manufacturing method for multi-layer polysilicon surface-micromachining technology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sniegowski, J.J.; Rodgers, M.S.

    1998-01-01

    An advanced manufacturing technology which provides multi-layered polysilicon surface micromachining technology for advanced weapon systems is presented. Specifically, the addition of another design layer to a 4 levels process to create a 5 levels process allows consideration of fundamentally new architecture in designs for weapon advanced surety components.

  15. Femtosecond laser micromachining of compound parabolic concentrator fiber tipped glucose sensors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hassan, Hafeez Ul; Lacraz, Amédée; Kalli, Kyriacos

    2017-01-01

    We report on highly accurate femtosecond (fs) laser micromachining of a compound parabolic concentrator (CPC) fiber tip on a polymer optical fiber (POF). The accuracy is reflected in an unprecedented correspondence between the numerically predicted and experimentally found improvement in fluoresc...

  16. Sensitivity of Micromachined Joule-Thomson Cooler to Clogging Due to Moisture

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cao, Haishan; Vanapalli, Srinivas; Holland, Herman J.; Vermeer, Cristian Hendrik; ter Brake, Hermanus J.M.

    2015-01-01

    A major issue in long-term operation of micromachined Joule-Thomson coolers is the clogging of the microchannels and/or the restriction due to the deposition of water molecules present in the working fluid. In this study, we present the performance of a microcooler operated with nitrogen gas with

  17. Fabrication of surface micromachined ain piezoelectric microstructures and its potential apllication to rf resonators

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Saravanan, S.; Saravanan, S.; Berenschot, Johan W.; Krijnen, Gijsbertus J.M.; Elwenspoek, Michael Curt

    2005-01-01

    We report on a novel microfabrication method to fabricate aluminum nitride (AlN) piezoelectric microstructures down to 2 microns size by a surface micromachining process. Highly c-axis oriented AlN thin films are deposited between thin Cr electrodes on polysilicon structural layers by rf reactive

  18. Surface micromachined fabrication of piezoelectric ain unimorph suspension devices for rf resonator applications

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Saravanan, S.; Saravanan, S.; Berenschot, Johan W.; Krijnen, Gijsbertus J.M.; Elwenspoek, Michael Curt

    We report a surface micromachining process for aluminum nitride (AlN) thin films to fabricate piezoelectric unimorph suspension devices for actuator applications. Polysilicon is used as a structural layer. Highly c-axis oriented AlN thin films 1 /spl mu/m thick are deposited by rf reactive

  19. Micromachined Microwave Cavity Resonator Filters for 5G: a Feasibility Study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kemenade, van R.; Smolders, A.B.; Hon, de B.P.

    2015-01-01

    Micromachined microwave cavity filters offer a light-weight, high-Q and highly integrated alternative in the frequency range of 20 GHz–100 GHz as compared to conventional filter types. The filter technology shows potential for use in 5G portable devices and as such, the design of a duplexer

  20. Design challenges for stepper motor actuated microvalve based on fine and micro-machining

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fazal, I.; Elwenspoek, Michael Curt

    2007-01-01

    We present a normally open stepper motor actuated microvalve based on micro and fine-machining technique. In this paper, first we have described how the larger controllable flow range can be achieved with simple micromachining techniques and secondly we have presented the results which show how the

  1. Experimental investigation of sound absorption of acoustic wedges for anechoic chambers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belyaev, I. V.; Golubev, A. Yu.; Zverev, A. Ya.; Makashov, S. Yu.; Palchikovskiy, V. V.; Sobolev, A. F.; Chernykh, V. V.

    2015-09-01

    The results of measuring the sound absorption by acoustic wedges, which were performed in AC-3 and AC-11 reverberation chambers at the Central Aerohydrodynamic Institute (TsAGI), are presented. Wedges of different densities manufactured from superfine basaltic and thin mineral fibers were investigated. The results of tests of these wedges were compared to the sound absorption of wedges of the operating AC-2 anechoic facility at TsAGI. It is shown that basaltic-fiber wedges have better sound-absorption characteristics than the investigated analogs and can be recommended for facing anechoic facilities under construction.

  2. The optimisation of wedge filters in radiotherapy of the prostate

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Oldham, Mark; Neal, Anthony J.; Webb, Steve

    1995-01-01

    A treatment plan optimisation algorithm has been applied to 12 patients with early prostate cancer in order to determine the optimum beam-weights and wedge angles for a standard conformal three-field treatment technique. The optimisation algorithm was based on fast-simulated-annealing using a cost function designed to achieve a uniform dose in the planning-target-volume (PTV) and to minimise the integral doses to the organs-at-risk. The algorithm has been applied to standard conformal three-field plans created by an experienced human planner, and run in three PLAN MODES: (1) where the wedge angles were fixed by the human planner and only the beam-weights were optimised; (2) where both the wedge angles and beam-weights were optimised; and (3) where both the wedge angles and beam-weights were optimised and a non-uniform dose was prescribed to the PTV. In the latter PLAN MODE, a uniform 100% dose was prescribed to all of the PTV except for that region that overlaps with the rectum where a lower (e.g., 90%) dose was prescribed. The resulting optimised plans have been compared with those of the human planner who found beam-weights by conventional forward planning techniques. Plans were compared on the basis of dose statistics, normal-tissue-complication-probability (NTCP) and tumour-control-probability (TCP). The results of the comparison showed that all three PLAN MODES produced plans with slightly higher TCP for the same rectal NTCP, than the human planner. The best results were observed for PLAN MODE 3, where an average increase in TCP of 0.73% (± 0.20, 95% confidence interval) was predicted by the biological models. This increase arises from a beneficial dose gradient which is produced across the tumour. Although the TCP gain is small it comes with no increase in treatment complexity, and could translate into increased cures given the large numbers of patients being referred. A study of the beam-weights and wedge angles chosen by the optimisation algorithm revealed

  3. Damping control of micromachined lowpass mechanical vibration isolation filters using electrostatic actuation with electronic signal processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dean, Robert; Flowers, George; Sanders, Nicole; MacAllister, Ken; Horvath, Roland; Hodel, A. S.; Johnson, Wayne; Kranz, Michael; Whitley, Michael

    2005-05-01

    Some harsh environments, such as those encountered by aerospace vehicles and various types of industrial machinery, contain high frequency/amplitude mechanical vibrations. Unfortunately, some very useful components are sensitive to these high frequency mechanical vibrations. Examples include MEMS gyroscopes and resonators, oscillators and some micro optics. Exposure of these components to high frequency mechanical vibrations present in the operating environment can result in problems ranging from an increased noise floor to component failure. Passive micromachined silicon lowpass filter structures (spring-mass-damper) have been demonstrated in recent years. However, the performance of these filter structures is typically limited by low damping (especially if operated in near-vacuum environments) and a lack of tunability after fabrication. Active filter topologies, such as piezoelectric, electrostrictive-polymer-film and SMA have also been investigated in recent years. Electrostatic actuators, however, are utilized in many micromachined silicon devices to generate mechanical motion. They offer a number of advantages, including low power, fast response time, compatibility with silicon micromachining, capacitive position measurement and relative simplicity of fabrication. This paper presents an approach for realizing active micromachined mechanical lowpass vibration isolation filters by integrating an electrostatic actuator with the micromachined passive filter structure to realize an active mechanical lowpass filter. Although the electrostatic actuator can be used to adjust the filter resonant frequency, the primary application is for increasing the damping to an acceptable level. The physical size of these active filters is suitable for use in or as packaging for sensitive electronic and MEMS devices, such as MEMS vibratory gyroscope chips.

  4. Variation in Depth Dose Data between Open and Wedge Fields for 6 MV X-Rays

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    U, Hong; Ryu, M. S. Samuel; Park, In Kyu

    1989-01-01

    Central axis depth dose data for 6 MV X-rays, including tissue maximum ratios, were measured for wedge fields according to Tatcher equation. In wedge fields, the differences in magnitude which increased with depth, field size, and wedge thickness increased when compared with the corresponding open field data. However, phantom scatter correction factors for wedge fields differed less that 1% from the corresponding open field factors. The differences in central axis percent depth dose between two types of fields indicated beam hardening by the wedge filter. The deviation of percent depth doses and scatter correction factors between the effective wedge field and the nominal wedge field at same angle was negligible. The differences were less than 3.26% between the nominal or effective wedge fields and the open fields for percent depth doses to the depth 7cm in 6cm x 6cm field. For larger (10cm x 10cm) field size, however, the deviation of percent depth doses between the nominal or effective wedge fields and the open fields were greater-dosimetric errors were 3.56% at depth 7cm and nearly 5.30% at 12cm. We suggest that the percent depth doses of individual wedge and wedge transmission factors should be considered for the dose calculation or monitor setting in the treatment of deep seated tumor

  5. Direct FVM Simulation for Sound Propagation in an Ideal Wedge

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hongyu Ji

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The sound propagation in a wedge-shaped waveguide with perfectly reflecting boundaries is one of the few range-dependent problems with an analytical solution. This provides a benchmark for the theoretical and computational studies on the simulation of ocean acoustic applications. We present a direct finite volume method (FVM simulation for the ideal wedge problem, and both time and frequency domain results are analyzed. We also study the broadband problem with large-scale parallel simulations. The results presented in this paper validate the accuracy of the numerical techniques and show that the direct FVM simulation could be applied to large-scale complex acoustic applications with a high performance computing platform.

  6. Field size dependence of wedge factor: miniphantom vs full phantom measurements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Allen Li, X.; Szanto, J.; Soubra, M.; Gerig, L. H.

    1995-01-01

    It is empirically known that the transmission factor for wedge in a high-energy photon beam is dependent upon field size and depth of measurement. The field-size dependence of wedge factors may be attributed to changes in (i) head scatter, (ii) phantom scatter, and (iii) backscatter from the wedge into the linac monitor chamber. In this work we present the results of studies designed to examine each of these factors in isolation. The wedge factors for wedges with nominal wedge angles of 15 deg. , 30 deg. , 45 deg. and 60 deg. were measured with a 3-g/cm 2 -diameter narrow cylindrical phantom (miniphantom), a brass cap with 1.5-g/cm 2 side-wall thickness and a full water phantom for 6-, 10- and 18-MV photon beams. The measurements were performed with and without flattening filter in place. The wedge factors measured with the miniphantom and the brass cap exclude the phantom scatter contribution. It has been found that the field-size behaviour of wedge factor measured with full water phantom is similar to that measured with the miniphantom and cap. This indicates that the head scatter radiation is the major contributor to the field size dependence of wedge factors. Wedge factors measured with water phantom are up to 5.0% smaller than those measured with miniphantom. This difference increases with wedge angle. When Measured with the flattening filter removed, the field size dependence of the wedge factor is reduced. This justify that the flattening filter is one of the major contributors to head scatters. The measurement results made with the brass cap agree well with those made by using the miniphantom. By measuring the monitor chamber output, it is found that the backscatters from the wedge into the linac ion chamber have little effect on the field size dependence of the wedge factor

  7. Interpretation and inverse analysis of the wedge splitting test

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Østergaard, Lennart; Stang, Henrik

    2002-01-01

    to the wedge splitting test and that it is well suited for the interpretation of test results in terms of s(w). A fine agreement between the hinge and FEM-models has been found. It has also been found that the test and the hinge model form a solid basis for inverse analysis. The paper also discusses possible...... three dimensional problems in the experiment as well as the influence of specimen size....

  8. New Transition Wedge Design Composed by Prefabricated Reinforced Concrete Slabs

    OpenAIRE

    Real-Herráiz, Julia; Zamorano-Martín, Clara; Real-Herráiz, Teresa; Morales-Ivorra, Silvia

    2016-01-01

    [EN] Important track degradation occurs in structure-embankment transitions, in which an abrupt change in track vertical stiffness arises, leading to a reduction in passengers comfort and safety. Although granular wedges are suggested by different railroad administrations as a solution to avoid these problems, they present some disadvantages which may affect track long-term performance. In this paper, a new solution designed with prefabricated reinforced concrete slabs is proposed. The aim of...

  9. Partially wedged beams improve radiotherapy treatment of urinary bladder cancer

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Muren, Ludvig Paul; Hafslund, Rune; Gustafsson, Anders; Smaaland, Rune; Dahl, Olav

    2001-01-01

    Background and purpose: Partially wedged beams (PWBs) having wedge in one part of the field only, can be shaped using dynamic jaw intensity modulation. The possible clinical benefit of PWBs was tested in treatment plans for muscle-infiltrating bladder cancer. Material and methods: Three-dimensional treatment plans for 25 bladder cancer patients were analyzed. The originally prescribed standard conformal four-field box technique, which includes the use of lateral ordinary wedge beams, was compared to a modified conformal treatment using customized lateral PWBs. In these modified treatment plans, only the anterior parts of the two lateral beams had a wedge. To analyze the potential clinical benefit of treatment with PWBs, treatment plans were scored and compared using both physical parameters and biological dose response models. One tumour control probability model and two normal tissue complication probability (NTCP) models were applied. Different parameters for normal tissue radiation tolerance presented in the literature were used. Results: By PWBs the dose homogeneity throughout the target volume was improved for all patients, reducing the average relative standard deviation of the target dose distribution from 2.3 to 1.8%. A consistent reduction in the maximum doses to surrounding normal tissue volumes was also found. The most notable improvement was demonstrated in the rectum where the volume receiving more than the prescribed tumour dose was halved. Treatment with PWBs would permit a target dose escalation of 2-6 Gy in several of the patients analyzed, without increasing the overall risk for complications. The number of patients suitable for dose escalation ranged from 3 to 15, depending on whether support from all or only one of the five applied NTCP model/parameter combinations were required in each case to recommend dose escalation. Conclusion: PWBs represent a simple dose conformation tool that may allow radiation dose escalation in the treatment of muscle

  10. Spatial resolution of wedge shaped silicon microstrip detectors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anticic, T.; Barnett, B.; Blumenfeld, B.; Chien, C.Y.; Fisher, P.; Gougas, A.; Krizmanic, J.; Madansky, L.; Newman, D.; Orndorff, J.; Pevsner, A.; Spangler, J.

    1995-01-01

    Several wedge-shaped silicon microstrip detectors with pitches from 30 to 100 μm have been designed by our group and beam tested at the CERN SPS. We find the spatial resolution σ becomes larger at the rate of 0.21 μm per 1 μm increase in pitch, but the number of strips per cluster remains about the same as the pitch varies from 30 to 100 μm. (orig.)

  11. A paired wedge filter system for compensation in dose differences

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kobayashi, H.; Sakurai, Y.; Kondo, S.; Abe, S.; Hayakawa, N.; Aoyama, Y.; Obata, Y.; Ishigaki, T.

    1998-01-01

    Objective: In radiotherapy, it is important to conform the high dose volume to the planned target volume. A variable thickness paired wedge filter system was developed to compensate for dose inhomogeneity arising from field width segment variation in conformal irradiation. Materials and methods: The present study used a 6 MV linear accelerator equipped with multileaf collimator leaves and a paired wedge compensating filter system. The dose variation due to field width was measured in each field segment width. The variation in attenuation of the compensators was measured as a function of filter position. As the field width increases, the relative absorbed dose also increases; this is the point of requiring compensation, so it can be in reverse proportion. Results: As the field width increases, the relative absorbed dose also increases; this is why compensation is required and thus it must be in reverse proportion. Attenuation of the absorbed dose by the paired filters was in proportion to the filter position. The filter position to compensate for the difference of absorbed doses was defined by the square root of the field width. For a field varying in width from 4 to 16 cm, the variation in the absorbed dose across the field was reduced from 12% to 2.7%. Conclusion: This paired wedge filter system reduced absorbed dose variations across multileaf collimator shaped fields and can facilitate treatment planning in conformal therapy. (Copyright (c) 1998 Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam. All rights reserved.)

  12. Complex Anisotropic Structure of the Mantle Wedge Beneath Kamchatka Volcanoes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levin, V.; Park, J.; Gordeev, E.; Droznin, D.

    2002-12-01

    A wedge of mantle material above the subducting lithospheric plate at a convergent margin is among the most dynamic environments of the Earth's interior. Deformation and transport of solid and volatile phases within this region control the fundamental process of elemental exchange between the surficial layers and the interior of the planet. A helpful property in the study of material deformation and transport within the upper mantle is seismic anisotropy, which may reflect both microscopic effects of preferentialy aligned crystals of olivine and orthopyroxene and macroscopic effects of systematic cracks, melt lenses, layering etc. Through the mapping of anisotropic properties within the mantle wedge we can establish patterns of deformation. Volatile content affects olivine alignment, so regions of anomalous volatile content may be evident. Indicators of seismic anisotropy commonly employed in upper mantle studies include shear wave birefringence and mode-conversion between compressional and shear body waves. When combined together, these techniques offer complementary constraints on the location and intensity of anisotropic properties. The eastern coast of southern Kamchatka overlies a vigorous convergent margin where the Pacific plate descends at a rate of almost 80 mm/yr towards the northwest. We extracted seismic anisotropy indicators from two data sets sensitive to the anisotropic properties of the uppermost mantle. Firstly, we evaluated teleseismic receiver functions for a number of sites, and found ample evidence for anisotropicaly-influenced P-to-S mode conversion. Secondly, we measured splitting in S waves of earthquakes with sources within the downgoing slab. The first set of observations provides constraints on the depth ranges where strong changes in anisotropic properties take place. The local splitting data provides constraints on the cumulative strength of anisotropic properties along specific pathways through the mantle wedge and possibly parts of

  13. Degradation and stabilization of ice wedges: Implications for assessing risk of thermokarst in northern Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kanevskiy, Mikhail; Shur, Yuri; Jorgenson, Torre; Brown, Dana R. N.; Moskalenko, Nataliya; Brown, Jerry; Walker, Donald A.; Raynolds, Martha K.; Buchhorn, Marcel

    2017-11-01

    Widespread degradation of ice wedges has been observed during the last decades in numerous areas within the continuous permafrost zone of Eurasia and North America. To study ice-wedge degradation, we performed field investigations at Prudhoe Bay and Barrow in northern Alaska during 2011-2016. In each study area, a 250-m transect was established with plots representing different stages of ice-wedge degradation/stabilization. Field work included surveying ground- and water-surface elevations, thaw-depth measurements, permafrost coring, vegetation sampling, and ground-based LiDAR scanning. We described cryostratigraphy of frozen soils and stable isotope composition, analyzed environmental characteristics associated with ice-wedge degradation and stabilization, evaluated the vulnerability and resilience of ice wedges to climate change and disturbances, and developed new conceptual models of ice-wedge dynamics that identify the main factors affecting ice-wedge degradation and stabilization and the main stages of this quasi-cyclic process. We found significant differences in the patterns of ice-wedge degradation and stabilization between the two areas, and the patterns were more complex than those previously described because of the interactions of changing topography, water redistribution, and vegetation/soil responses that can interrupt or reinforce degradation. Degradation of ice wedges is usually triggered by an increase in the active-layer thickness during exceptionally warm and wet summers or as a result of flooding or disturbance. Vulnerability of ice wedges to thermokarst is controlled by the thickness of the intermediate layer of the upper permafrost, which overlies ice wedges and protects them from thawing. In the continuous permafrost zone, degradation of ice wedges rarely leads to their complete melting; and in most cases wedges eventually stabilize and can then resume growing, indicating a somewhat cyclic and reversible process. Stabilization of ice wedges

  14. Optimization of design parameters for bulk micromachined silicon membranes for piezoresistive pressure sensing application

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Belwanshi, Vinod; Topkar, Anita

    2016-01-01

    Finite element analysis study has been carried out to optimize the design parameters for bulk micro-machined silicon membranes for piezoresistive pressure sensing applications. The design is targeted for measurement of pressure up to 200 bar for nuclear reactor applications. The mechanical behavior of bulk micro-machined silicon membranes in terms of deflection and stress generation has been simulated. Based on the simulation results, optimization of the membrane design parameters in terms of length, width and thickness has been carried out. Subsequent to optimization of membrane geometrical parameters, the dimensions and location of the high stress concentration region for implantation of piezoresistors have been obtained for sensing of pressure using piezoresistive sensing technique.

  15. Surface-micromachined rotatable member having a low-contact-area hub

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodgers, M. Steven; Sniegowski, Jeffry J.; Krygowski, Thomas W.

    2003-11-18

    A surface-micromachined rotatable member formed on a substrate and a method for manufacturing thereof are disclosed. The surface-micromachined rotatable member, which can be a gear or a rotary stage, has a central hub, and an annulus connected to the central hub by an overarching bridge. The hub includes a stationary axle support attached to the substrate and surrounding an axle. The axle is retained within the axle support with an air-gap spacing therebetween of generally 0.3 .mu.m or less. The rotatable member can be formed by alternately depositing and patterning layers of a semiconductor (e.g. polysilicon or a silicon-germanium alloy) and a sacrificial material and then removing the sacrificial material, at least in part. The present invention has applications for forming micromechanical or microelectromechanical devices requiring lower actuation forces, and providing improved reliability.

  16. Surface--micromachined rotatable member having a low-contact-area hub

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodgers, M. Steven; Sniegowski, Jeffry J.

    2002-01-01

    A surface-micromachined rotatable member formed on a substrate and a method for manufacturing thereof are disclosed. The surface-micromachined rotatable member, which can be a gear or a rotary stage, has a central hub, and an annulus connected to the central hub by an overarching bridge. The hub includes a stationary axle support attached to the substrate and surrounding an axle. The axle is retained within the axle support with an air-gap spacing therebetween of generally 0.3 .mu.m or less. The rotatable member can be formed by alternately depositing and patterning layers of a semiconductor (e.g. polysilicon or a silicon-germanium alloy) and a sacrificial material and then removing the sacrificial material, at least in part. The present invention has applications for forming micromechanical or microelectromechanical devices requiring lower actuation forces, and providing improved reliability.

  17. Optimized design of micromachined electric field mills to maximize electrostatic field sensitivity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yu Zhou

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available This paper describes the design optimization of a micromachined electric field mill, in relation to maximizing its output signal. The cases studied are for a perforated electrically grounded shutter vibrating laterally over sensing electrodes. It is shown that when modeling the output signal of the sensor, the differential charge on the sense electrodes when exposed to vs. visibly shielded from the incident electric field must be considered. Parametric studies of device dimensions show that the shutter thickness and its spacing from the underlying electrodes should be minimized as these parameters very strongly affect the MEFM signal. Exploration of the shutter perforation size and sense electrode width indicate that the best MEFM design is one where shutter perforation widths are a few times larger than the sense electrode widths. Keywords: MEFM, Finite element method, Electric field measurement, MEMS, Micromachining

  18. Femtosecond laser micro-machined polyimide films for cell scaffold applications

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Antanavičiute, Ieva; Šimatonis, Linas; Ulčinas, Orestas

    2018-01-01

    of commercially available 12.7 and 25.4μm thickness polyimide (PI) film was applied. Mechanical properties of the fabricated scaffolds, i.e. arrays of differently spaced holes, were examined via custom-built uniaxial micro-tensile testing and finite element method simulations. We demonstrate that experimental...... micro-tensile testing results could be numerically simulated and explained by two-material model, assuming that 2-6μm width rings around the holes possessed up to five times higher Young's modulus and yield stress compared with the rest of the laser intacted PI film areas of 'dog-bone'-shaped specimens......Engineering of sophisticated synthetic 3D scaffolds that allow controlling behaviour and location of the cells requires advanced micro/nano-fabrication techniques. Ultrafast laser micro-machining employing a 1030-nm wavelength Yb:KGW femtosecond laser and a micro-fabrication workstation for micro-machining...

  19. Design and Performance of a Focus-Detection System for Use in Laser Micromachining

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Binh Xuan Cao

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available We describe a new approach for locating the focal position in laser micromachining. This approach is based on a feedback system that uses a charge-coupled device (CCD camera, a beam splitter, and a mirror to focus a laser beam on the surface of a work piece. We tested the proposed method for locating the focal position by using Zemax simulations, as well as physically carrying out drilling processes. Compared with conventional methods, this approach is advantageous because: the implementation is simple, the specimen can easily be positioned at the focal position, and the dynamically adjustable scan amplitude and the CCD camera can be used to monitor the laser beam’s profile. The proposed technique will be particularly useful for locating the focal position on any surface in laser micromachining.

  20. Micromachined Thin-Film Sensors for SOI-CMOS Co-Integration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laconte, Jean; Flandre, D.; Raskin, Jean-Pierre

    Co-integration of sensors with their associated electronics on a single silicon chip may provide many significant benefits regarding performance, reliability, miniaturization and process simplicity without significantly increasing the total cost. Micromachined Thin-Film Sensors for SOI-CMOS Co-integration covers the challenges and interests and demonstrates the successful co-integration of gas flow sensors on dielectric membrane, with their associated electronics, in CMOS-SOI technology. We firstly investigate the extraction of residual stress in thin layers and in their stacking and the release, in post-processing, of a 1 μm-thick robust and flat dielectric multilayered membrane using Tetramethyl Ammonium Hydroxide (TMAH) silicon micromachining solution.

  1. A novel micromachined shadow mask system with self-alignment and gap control capability

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hong, Jung Moo; Zou Jun

    2008-01-01

    We present a novel micromachined shadow mask system, which is capable of accurate self-alignment and mask-substrate gap control. The shadow mask system consists of a silicon shadow mask and a silicon carrier wafer with pyramidal cavities fabricated with bulk micromachining. Self-alignment and gap control of the shadow mask and the fabrication substrate can readily be achieved by using matching pairs of pyramidal cavities and steel spheres placed between. The layer-to-layer alignment accuracy of the new shadow mask system has been experimentally characterized and verified using both optical and atomic force microscopic measurements. As an application of this new shadow mask system, an organic thin-film transistor (OTFT) using pentacene as the semiconductor layer has been successfully fabricated and tested

  2. Modelling of micromachining of human tooth enamel by erbium laser radiation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Belikov, A V; Skrypnik, A V; Shatilova, K V [St. Petersburg National Research University of Information Technologies, Mechanics and Optics, St. Petersburg (Russian Federation)

    2014-08-31

    We consider a 3D cellular model of human tooth enamel and a photomechanical cellular model of enamel ablation by erbium laser radiation, taking into account the structural peculiarities of enamel, energy distribution in the laser beam cross section and attenuation of laser energy in biological tissue. The surface area of the texture in enamel is calculated after its micromachining by erbium laser radiation. The influence of the surface area on the bond strength of enamel with dental filling materials is discussed. A good correlation between the computer simulation of the total work of adhesion and experimentally measured bond strength between the dental filling material and the tooth enamel after its micromachining by means of YAG : Er laser radiation is attained. (laser biophotonics)

  3. Modelling of micromachining of human tooth enamel by erbium laser radiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Belikov, A V; Skrypnik, A V; Shatilova, K V

    2014-01-01

    We consider a 3D cellular model of human tooth enamel and a photomechanical cellular model of enamel ablation by erbium laser radiation, taking into account the structural peculiarities of enamel, energy distribution in the laser beam cross section and attenuation of laser energy in biological tissue. The surface area of the texture in enamel is calculated after its micromachining by erbium laser radiation. The influence of the surface area on the bond strength of enamel with dental filling materials is discussed. A good correlation between the computer simulation of the total work of adhesion and experimentally measured bond strength between the dental filling material and the tooth enamel after its micromachining by means of YAG : Er laser radiation is attained. (laser biophotonics)

  4. Development of a Surface Micromachined On-Chip Flat Disk Micropump

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. I. KILANI

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available The paper presents research progress in the development of a surface micromachined flat disk micropump which employs the viscous and centrifugal effects acting on a layer of fluid sandwiched between a rotating flat disk and a stationary plate. The pump is fabricated monolithically on-chip using Sandia’s Ultraplanar Multilevel MEMS Technology (SUMMiT™ where an electrostatic comb-drive Torsional Ratcheting Actuator (TRA drives the flat disk through a geared transmission. The paper reviews available analytical models for flow geometries similar to that of the described pump, and presents a set of experiments which depict its performance and possible failure modes. Those experiments highlight future research directions in the development of electrostatically-actuated, CMOS-compatible, surface micromachined pumps.

  5. Optimization of design parameters for bulk micromachined silicon membranes for piezoresistive pressure sensing application

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belwanshi, Vinod; Topkar, Anita

    2016-05-01

    Finite element analysis study has been carried out to optimize the design parameters for bulk micro-machined silicon membranes for piezoresistive pressure sensing applications. The design is targeted for measurement of pressure up to 200 bar for nuclear reactor applications. The mechanical behavior of bulk micro-machined silicon membranes in terms of deflection and stress generation has been simulated. Based on the simulation results, optimization of the membrane design parameters in terms of length, width and thickness has been carried out. Subsequent to optimization of membrane geometrical parameters, the dimensions and location of the high stress concentration region for implantation of piezoresistors have been obtained for sensing of pressure using piezoresistive sensing technique.

  6. Sub 100 nm proton beam micromachining: theoretical calculations on resolution limits

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kan, J.A. van; Sum, T.C.; Osipowicz, T.; Watt, F.

    2000-01-01

    Proton beam micromachining is a novel direct-write process for the production of three-dimensional (3D) microstructures. A focused beam of MeV protons is scanned in a pre-determined pattern over a suitable resist material (e.g. PMMA or SU-8) and the latent image formed is subsequently developed chemically. In this paper calculations on theoretical resolution limits of proton beam micromachined three-dimensional microstructures are presented. Neglecting the finite beam size, a Monte Carlo ion transport code was used in combination with a theoretical model describing the delta-ray (δ-ray) energy deposition to determine the lateral energy deposition distribution in PMMA resist material. The energy deposition distribution of ion induced secondary electrons (δ-rays) has been parameterized using analytical models. It is assumed that the attainable resolution is limited by a convolution of the spread of the ion beam and energy deposition of the δ-rays

  7. Micromachining structured optical fibers using focused ion beam milling

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Martelli, C.; Olivero, P.; Canning, J.; Groothoff, N.; Gibson, B.; Huntington, S.

    2007-01-01

    A focused ion beam is used to mill side holes in air-silica structured fibers. By way of example, side holes are introduced in two types of air-structured fiber, (1) a photonic crystal four-ring fiber and (2) a six-hole single-ring step-index structured fiber. © 2007 Optical Society of America.

  8. Optimized design of micromachined electric field mills to maximize electrostatic field sensitivity

    OpenAIRE

    Zhou, Yu; Shafai, Cyrus

    2016-01-01

    This paper describes the design optimization of a micromachined electric field mill, in relation to maximizing its output signal. The cases studied are for a perforated electrically grounded shutter vibrating laterally over sensing electrodes. It is shown that when modeling the output signal of the sensor, the differential charge on the sense electrodes when exposed to vs. visibly shielded from the incident electric field must be considered. Parametric studies of device dimensions show that t...

  9. Sensors and Micromachined Devices for the Automotive and New Markets: The Delphi Delco Electronics MEMS Story.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Logsdon, James

    2002-03-01

    This presentation will provide a brief history of the development of MEMS products and technology, beginning with the manifold absolute pressure sensor in the late seventies through the current variety of Delphi Delco Electronics sensors available today. The technology development of micromachining from uncompensated P plus etch stops to deep reactive ion etching and the technology development of wafer level packaging from electrostatic bonding to glass frit sealing and silicon to silicon direct bonding will be reviewed.

  10. 3D Printed Microtransporters: Compound Micromachines for Spatiotemporally Controlled Delivery of Therapeutic Agents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Tian-Yun; Sakar, Mahmut Selman; Mao, Angelo; Petruska, Andrew J; Qiu, Famin; Chen, Xue-Bo; Kennedy, Stephen; Mooney, David; Nelson, Bradley J

    2015-11-01

    Functional compound micromachines are fabricated by a design methodology using 3D direct laser writing and selective physical vapor deposition of magnetic materials. Microtransporters with a wirelessly controlled Archimedes screw pumping mechanism are engineered. Spatiotemporally controlled collection, transport, and delivery of micro particles, as well as magnetic nanohelices inside microfluidic channels are demonstrated. © 2015 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  11. Predicting the Deflections of Micromachined Electrostatic Actuators Using Artificial Neural Network (ANN

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hing Wah LEE

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available In this study, a general purpose Artificial Neural Network (ANN model based on the feed-forward back-propagation (FFBP algorithm has been used to predict the deflections of a micromachined structures actuated electrostatically under different loadings and geometrical parameters. A limited range of simulation results obtained via CoventorWare™ numerical software will be used initially to train the neural network via back-propagation algorithm. The micromachined structures considered in the analyses are diaphragm, fixed-fixed beams and cantilevers. ANN simulation results are compared with results obtained via CoventorWare™ simulations and existing analytical work for validation purpose. The proposed ANN model accurately predicts the deflections of the micromachined structures with great reduction of simulation efforts, establishing the method superiority. This method can be extended for applications in other sensors particularly for modeling sensors applying electrostatic actuation which are difficult in nature due to the inherent non-linearity of the electro-mechanical coupling response.

  12. A wafer mapping technique for residual stress in surface micromachined films

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schiavone, G; Murray, J; Smith, S; Walton, A J; Desmulliez, M P Y; Mount, A R

    2016-01-01

    The design of MEMS devices employing movable structures is crucially dependant on the mechanical behaviour of the deposited materials. It is therefore important to be able to fully characterize the micromachined films and predict with confidence the mechanical properties of patterned structures. This paper presents a characterization technique that enables the residual stress in MEMS films to be mapped at the wafer level by using microstructures released by surface micromachining. These dedicated MEMS test structures and the associated measurement techniques are used to extract localized information on the strain and Young’s modulus of the film under investigation. The residual stress is then determined by numerically coupling this data with a finite element analysis of the structure. This paper illustrates the measurement routine and demonstrates it with a case study using electrochemically deposited alloys of nickel and iron, particularly prone to develop high levels of residual stress. The results show that the technique enables wafer mapping of film non-uniformities and identifies wafer-to-wafer differences. A comparison between the results obtained from the mapping technique and conventional wafer bow measurements highlights the benefits of using a procedure tailored to films that are non-uniform, patterned and surface-micromachined, as opposed to simple standard stress extraction methods. The presented technique reveals detailed information that is generally unexplored when using conventional stress extraction methods such as wafer bow measurements. (paper)

  13. Modeling and Experimental Study on Characterization of Micromachined Thermal Gas Inertial Sensors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yan Su

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Micromachined thermal gas inertial sensors based on heat convection are novel devices that compared with conventional micromachined inertial sensors offer the advantages of simple structures, easy fabrication, high shock resistance and good reliability by virtue of using a gaseous medium instead of a mechanical proof mass as key moving and sensing elements. This paper presents an analytical modeling for a micromachined thermal gas gyroscope integrated with signal conditioning. A simplified spring-damping model is utilized to characterize the behavior of the sensor. The model relies on the use of the fluid mechanics and heat transfer fundamentals and is validated using experimental data obtained from a test-device and simulation. Furthermore, the nonideal issues of the sensor are addressed from both the theoretical and experimental points of view. The nonlinear behavior demonstrated in experimental measurements is analyzed based on the model. It is concluded that the sources of nonlinearity are mainly attributable to the variable stiffness of the sensor system and the structural asymmetry due to nonideal fabrication.

  14. Experimental and Modeling Study of Liquid-Assisted—Laser Beam Micromachining of Smart Ceramic Materials

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mayur Parmar

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Smart ceramic materials are next generation materials with the inherent intelligence to adapt to change in the external environment. These materials are destined to play an essential role in several critical engineering applications. Machining these materials using traditional machining processes is a challenge. The laser beam micromachining (LBMM process has the potential to machine such smart materials. However, laser machining when performed in air induces high thermal stress on the surface, often leading to crack formation, recast and re-deposition of ablated material, and large heat-affected zones (HAZ. Performing laser beam machining in the presence of a liquid medium could potentially resolve these issues. This research investigates the possibility of using a Liquid Assisted—Laser Beam Micromachining (LA-LBMM process for micromachining smart ceramic materials. Experimental studies are performed to compare the machining quality of laser beam machining process in air and in a liquid medium. The study reveals that the presence of liquid medium helps in controlling the heat-affected zone and the taper angle of the cavity drilled, thereby enhancing the machining quality. Analytical modeling is developed for the prediction of HAZ and cavity diameter both in air and underwater conditions, and the model is capable of predicting the experimental results to within 10% error.

  15. An in-pipe mobile micromachine using fluid power. A mechanism adaptable to pipe diameters

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yoshida, Kazuhiro; Yokota, Shinichi; Takahashi, Ken

    2000-01-01

    To realize micro maintenance robots for small diameter pipes of nuclear reactors and so on, high power in-pipe mobile micromachines have been required. The authors have proposed the bellows microactuator using fluid power and have tried to apply the actuators to in-pipe mobile micromachines. In the previous papers, some inchworm mobile machine prototypes with 25 mm in diameter are fabricated and the traveling performances are experimentally investigated. In this paper, to miniaturize the in-pipe mobile machine and to make it adaptable to pipe diameters, firstly, a simple rubber-tube actuator constrained with a coil-spring is proposed and the static characteristics are investigated. Secondly, a supporting mechanism which utilizes a toggle mechanism and is adaptable to pipe diameters is proposed and the supporting forces are investigated. Finally, an in-pipe mobile micromachine for pipe with 4 - 5 mm in diameter is fabricated and the maximum traveling velocity of 7 mm/s in both ahead and astern movements is experimentally verified. (author)

  16. Fabrication of a Micromachined Capacitive Switch Using the CMOS-MEMS Technology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cheng-Yang Lin

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available The study investigates the design and fabrication of a micromachined radio frequency (RF capacitive switch using the complementary metal oxide semiconductor-microelectromechanical system (CMOS-MEMS technology. The structure of the micromachined switch is composed of a membrane, eight springs, four inductors, and coplanar waveguide (CPW lines. In order to reduce the actuation voltage of the switch, the springs are designed as low stiffness. The finite element method (FEM software CoventorWare is used to simulate the actuation voltage and displacement of the switch. The micromachined switch needs a post-CMOS process to release the springs and membrane. A wet etching is employed to etch the sacrificial silicon dioxide layer, and to release the membrane and springs of the switch. Experiments show that the pull-in voltage of the switch is 12 V. The switch has an insertion loss of 0.8 dB at 36 GHz and an isolation of 19 dB at 36 GHz.

  17. Enhancing structural integrity of adhesive bonds through pulsed laser surface micro-machining

    KAUST Repository

    Diaz, Edwin Hernandez

    2015-06-01

    Enhancing the effective peel resistance of plastically deforming adhesive joints through laser-based surface micro-machining Edwin Hernandez Diaz Inspired by adhesion examples commonly found in nature, we reached out to examine the effect of different kinds of heterogeneous surface properties that may replicate this behavior and the mechanisms at work. In order to do this, we used pulsed laser ablation on copper substrates (CuZn40) aiming to increase adhesion for bonding. A Yb-fiber laser was used for surface preparation of the substrates, which were probed with a Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) and X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS). Heterogeneous surface properties were devised through the use of simplified laser micromachined patterns which may induce sequential events of crack arrest propagation, thereby having a leveraging effect on dissipation. The me- chanical performance of copper/epoxy joints with homogeneous and heterogeneous laser micromachined interfaces was then analyzed using the T-peel test. Fractured surfaces were analyzed using SEM to resolve the mechanism of failure and adhesive penetration within induced surface asperities from the treatment. Results confirm positive modifications of the surface morphology and chemistry from laser ablation that enable mechanical interlocking and cohesive failure within the adhesive layer. Remarkable improvements of apparent peel energy, bond toughness, and effective peel force were appreciated with respect to sanded substrates as control samples.

  18. Microtopographic control on the ground thermal regime in ice wedge polygons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abolt, Charles J.; Young, Michael H.; Atchley, Adam L.; Harp, Dylan R.

    2018-06-01

    The goal of this research is to constrain the influence of ice wedge polygon microtopography on near-surface ground temperatures. Ice wedge polygon microtopography is prone to rapid deformation in a changing climate, and cracking in the ice wedge depends on thermal conditions at the top of the permafrost; therefore, feedbacks between microtopography and ground temperature can shed light on the potential for future ice wedge cracking in the Arctic. We first report on a year of sub-daily ground temperature observations at 5 depths and 9 locations throughout a cluster of low-centered polygons near Prudhoe Bay, Alaska, and demonstrate that the rims become the coldest zone of the polygon during winter, due to thinner snowpack. We then calibrate a polygon-scale numerical model of coupled thermal and hydrologic processes against this dataset, achieving an RMSE of less than 1.1 °C between observed and simulated ground temperature. Finally, we conduct a sensitivity analysis of the model by systematically manipulating the height of the rims and the depth of the troughs and tracking the effects on ice wedge temperature. The results indicate that winter temperatures in the ice wedge are sensitive to both rim height and trough depth, but more sensitive to rim height. Rims act as preferential outlets of subsurface heat; increasing rim size decreases winter temperatures in the ice wedge. Deeper troughs lead to increased snow entrapment, promoting insulation of the ice wedge. The potential for ice wedge cracking is therefore reduced if rims are destroyed or if troughs subside, due to warmer conditions in the ice wedge. These findings can help explain the origins of secondary ice wedges in modern and ancient polygons. The findings also imply that the potential for re-establishing rims in modern thermokarst-affected terrain will be limited by reduced cracking activity in the ice wedges, even if regional air temperatures stabilize.

  19. Modes of continental extension in a crustal wedge

    KAUST Repository

    Wu, Guangliang

    2015-07-01

    © 2015 Elsevier B.V. We ran numerical experiments of the extension of a crustal wedge as an approximation to extension in an orogenic belt or a continental margin. We study the effects of the strength of the lower crust and of a weak mid-crustal shear zone on the resulting extension styles. A weak mid-crustal shear zone effectively decouples upper crustal extension from lower crustal flow. Without the mid-crustal shear zone, the degree of coupling between the upper and the lower crust increases and extension of the whole crust tends to focus on the thickest part of the wedge. We identify three distinct modes of extension determined by the strength of the lower crust, which are characterized by 1) localized, asymmetric crustal exhumation in a single massif when the lower crust is weak, 2) the formation of rolling-hinge normal faults and the exhumation of lower crust in multiple core complexes with an intermediate strength lower crust, and 3) distributed domino faulting over the weak mid-crustal shear zone when the lower crust is strong. A frictionally stronger mid-crustal shear zone does not change the overall model behaviors but extension occurred over multiple rolling-hinges. The 3 modes of extension share characteristics similar to geological models proposed to explain the formation of metamorphic core complexes: 1) the crustal flow model for the weak lower crust, 2) the rolling-hinge and crustal flow models when the lower crust is intermediate and 3) the flexural uplift model when the lower crust is strong. Finally we show that the intensity of decoupling between the far field extension and lower crustal flow driven by the regional pressure gradient in the wedge control the overall style of extension in the models.

  20. Modes of continental extension in a crustal wedge

    KAUST Repository

    Wu, Guangliang; Lavier, Luc L.; Choi, Eunseo

    2015-01-01

    © 2015 Elsevier B.V. We ran numerical experiments of the extension of a crustal wedge as an approximation to extension in an orogenic belt or a continental margin. We study the effects of the strength of the lower crust and of a weak mid-crustal shear zone on the resulting extension styles. A weak mid-crustal shear zone effectively decouples upper crustal extension from lower crustal flow. Without the mid-crustal shear zone, the degree of coupling between the upper and the lower crust increases and extension of the whole crust tends to focus on the thickest part of the wedge. We identify three distinct modes of extension determined by the strength of the lower crust, which are characterized by 1) localized, asymmetric crustal exhumation in a single massif when the lower crust is weak, 2) the formation of rolling-hinge normal faults and the exhumation of lower crust in multiple core complexes with an intermediate strength lower crust, and 3) distributed domino faulting over the weak mid-crustal shear zone when the lower crust is strong. A frictionally stronger mid-crustal shear zone does not change the overall model behaviors but extension occurred over multiple rolling-hinges. The 3 modes of extension share characteristics similar to geological models proposed to explain the formation of metamorphic core complexes: 1) the crustal flow model for the weak lower crust, 2) the rolling-hinge and crustal flow models when the lower crust is intermediate and 3) the flexural uplift model when the lower crust is strong. Finally we show that the intensity of decoupling between the far field extension and lower crustal flow driven by the regional pressure gradient in the wedge control the overall style of extension in the models.

  1. Fiscal 1997 report on technological results. R and D on micromachine technology; 1997 nendo micromachine gijutsu no kenkyu kaihatsu seika hokokusho

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1998-03-01

    Researches on basic element technology of micromachines are conducted that operate autonomously in a narrow small part in a complicated apparatus or in vivo. The areas of activity are 1. research on micromachine systems and 2. comprehensive investigation and research. In 1, (1) a micro catheter and (2) a micro tactile sensor catheter were studied while, in 2, basic technology and technological problems, particularly those problems concerning sophistication in the medical field were examined and studied. Further, in (1), with the purpose of developing a micro laser catheter for diagnosis/treatment, researches were implemented on the technology of integrating micro laser and an optical fiber which were components of the catheter and on the fabrication of the fine diameter of a micro catheter as well as on the characteristical improvement of the base body on which minute elements were mounted. In (2), characteristical improvement and sophistication were carried out for a high sensitivity contact pressure sensor and a diagnostic tactile sensor, which are mounted on a catheter having a positive bulge control mechanism for insertion into body cavity, with a sensor probe manufactured experimentally. (NEDO)

  2. Heat conduction problem of an evaporating liquid wedge

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tomas Barta

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available We consider the stationary heat transfer near the contact line of an evaporating liquid wedge surrounded by the atmosphere of its pure vapor. In a simplified setting, the problem reduces to the Laplace equation in a half circle, subject to a non-homogeneous and singular boundary condition. By classical tools (conformal mapping, Green's function, we reformulate the problem as an integral equation for the unknown Neumann boundary condition in the setting of appropriate fractional Sobolev and weighted space. The unique solvability is then obtained by means of the Fredholm theorem.

  3. Generalized monitor unit calculation for the Varian enhanced dynamic wedge field

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Liu Chihray; Kim, Siyong; Kahler, Darren L.; Palta, Jatinder R.

    2003-01-01

    The generalized monitor unit (MU) calculation equation for the Varian enhanced dynamic wedge (EDW) is derived. The assumption of this MU calculation method is that the wedge factor of the EDW at the center of the field is a function of field size, the position of the center of the field in the wedge direction, and the final position of the moving jaw. The wedge factors at the center of the field in both symmetric and asymmetric fields are examined. The difference between calculated and measured wedge factors is within 1.0%. The method developed here is easy to implement. The only datum required in addition to the standard set of conventional physical wedge implementation data is the off-axis output factor for the open field in the reference condition. The off-center point calculation is also examined. For the off-center point calculation, the dose profile in the wedge direction for the largest EDW field is used to obtain the relative off-center ratio in any smaller wedge field. The accuracy of the off-center point calculation decreases when the point of calculation is too close to the field edge

  4. Dissolved organic carbon loss from Yedoma permafrost amplified by ice wedge thaw

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vonk, J E; Mann, P J; Spencer, R G M; Bulygina, E B; Holmes, R M; Dowdy, K L; Davydova, A; Davydov, S P; Zimov, N; Eglinton, T I

    2013-01-01

    Pleistocene Yedoma permafrost contains nearly a third of all organic matter (OM) stored in circum-arctic permafrost and is characterized by the presence of massive ice wedges. Due to its rapid formation by sediment accumulation and subsequent frozen storage, Yedoma OM is relatively well preserved and highly biologically available (biolabile) upon thaw. A better understanding of the processes regulating Yedoma degradation is important to improve estimates of the response and magnitude of permafrost carbon feedbacks to climate warming. In this study, we examine the composition of ice wedges and the influence of ice wedge thaw on the biolability of Yedoma OM. Incubation assays were used to assess OM biolability, fluorescence spectroscopy to characterize the OM composition, and potential enzyme activity rates to examine the controls and regulation of OM degradation. We show that increasing amounts of ice wedge melt water in Yedoma-leached incubations enhanced the loss of dissolved OM over time. This may be attributed to the presence of low-molecular weight compounds and low initial phenolic content in the OM of ice wedges, providing a readily available substrate that promotes the degradation of Yedoma OC. The physical vulnerability of ice wedges upon thaw (causing irreversible collapse), combined with the composition of ice wedge-engrained OM (co-metabolizing old OM), underlines the particularly strong potential of Yedoma to generate a positive feedback to climate warming relative to other forms of non-ice wedge permafrost. (letter)

  5. Comparison of dosimetric characteristics of Siemens virtual and physical wedges for ONCOR linear accelerator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Attalla Ehab

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Dosimetric properties of virtual wedge (VW and physical wedge (PW in 6- and 10-MV photon beams from a Siemens ONCOR linear accelerator, including wedge factors, depth doses, dose profiles, peripheral doses, are compared. While there is a great difference in absolute values of wedge factors, VW factors (VWFs and PW factors (PWFs have a similar trend as a function of field size. PWFs have stronger depth dependence than VWF due to beam hardening in PW fields. VW dose profiles in the wedge direction, in general, match very well with those of PW, except in the toe area of large wedge angles with large field sizes. Dose profiles in the nonwedge direction show a significant reduction in PW fields due to off-axis beam softening and oblique filtration. PW fields have significantly higher peripheral doses than open and VW fields. VW fields have similar surface doses as the open fields, while PW fields have lower surface doses. Surface doses for both VW and PW increase with field size and slightly with wedge angle. For VW fields with wedge angles 45° and less, the initial gap up to 3 cm is dosimetrically acceptable when compared to dose profiles of PW. VW fields in general use less monitor units than PW fields.

  6. Checks for quality control of wedge dynamics in treatment units and the planning system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mateos Salvador, P.; Rodriguez Lopez, B.; Font Gelabert, J.; Hernandez Rodriguez, J.; Arino Gil, A.

    2013-01-01

    The objective of this study is to verify the implementation of enhanced dynamic wedge (EDW) vary in the Eclipse planning system and the experimental determination of the parameters that define the dosimetry characteristics of enhanced dynamic wedge of our treatment units. (Author)

  7. Use of a wedge cuvette in thin layer photometry and its application to oximetry

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Spaan, J. A.; Garred, L. J.; van de Borne, P.

    1977-01-01

    A wedge cuvette was constructed by fixing 2 glass plates at a known angle with a spacer at one end. This resulted in a thin layer with thickness varying from 0 to 250 micrometer. By measuring the intensity of a beam of light through the thin layer as a function of distance along the wedge (and thus

  8. North Aegean core complexes, the gravity spreading of a thrust wedge

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kydonakis, Konstantinos; Brun, Jean Pierre; Sokoutis, Dimitrios

    2015-01-01

    The North Aegean core complexes developed in middle Eocene soon after the end of continental block convergence and piling up of the Hellenic Thrust Wedge. They formed during back-arc extension, driven by the Hellenic slab rollback, at the back of the thrust wedge. A series of scaled laboratory

  9. Triangular metal wedges for subwavelength plasmon-polariton guiding at telecom wavelengths

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Boltasseva, Alexandra; Volkov, V.S.; Nielsen, Rasmus Bundgaard

    2008-01-01

    We report on subwavelength plasmon-polariton guiding by triangular metal wedges at telecom wavelengths. A high-quality fabrication procedure for making gold wedge waveguides, which is also mass- production compatible offering large-scale parallel fabrication of plasmonic components, is developed...

  10. Wedge gate valves selecting essentials in pipeline systems designing based on permissible operation parameters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zakirnichnaya, M. M.; Kulsharipov, I. M.

    2017-10-01

    Wedge gate valves are widely used at the fuel and energy complex enterprises. The pipeline valves manufacturers indicate the safe operation resource according to the current regulatory and technical documentation. In this case, the resource value of the valve body strength calculation results is taken into consideration as the main structural part. However, it was determined that the wedge gate valves fail before the assigned resource due to the occurrence of conditions under which the wedge breaks in the hooks and, accordingly, the sealing integrity is not ensured. In this regard, it became necessary to assess the conditions under which the resource should be assigned not only to the valve body, but also to take into account the wedge durability. For this purpose, wedge resource calculations were made using the example of ZKL2 250-25 and ZKL2 300-25 valves using the ABAQUS software package FE-SAFE module under the technological parameters influence on the basis of their stressstrain state calculation results. Operating conditions, under which the wedge resource value is lower than the one set by the manufacturer, were determined. A technique for limiting the operating parameters for ensuring the wedge durability during the wedge gate valve assigned resource is proposed.

  11. SOFTWARE FOR COMPUTER-AIDED DESIGN OF CROSS-WEDGE ROLLING

    OpenAIRE

    A. A. Abramov; S. V. Medvedev

    2013-01-01

    The issues of computer technology creation of 3D-design and engineering analysis of metal forming processes using cross wedge rolling methods (CWR) are considered. The developed software for computer-aided design and simulation of cross-wedge rolling is described.

  12. Pilot production of the wedge filter for the TBI (total body irradiation)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ikezaki, Hiromi; Ikeda, Ikuo; Maruyama, Yasushi; Nako, Yasunobu; Tonari, Ayako; Kusuda, Junko; Takayama, Makoto

    2007-01-01

    Total body irradiation (TBI) is performed by various methods, such as a long SSD method and a translational couch method. For patient safety in carrying out TBI, the patient should be placed on the supine position and prone position near the floor. TBI is performed from 2 opposite ports (AP/PA) with a linear accelerator (10 MV X-ray). We experimented with a wedge filter for TBI created by us, which makes dose distribution to a floor uniform. The wedge filter, made of iron alloy, was attached to the linear accelerator. In designing the wedge filter, thickness of the lead-made wedge filter can be calculated numerically from the ratio of linear attenuation coefficient of iron alloy and lead. In measuring the dose profile for a phantom of 20 cm thick, dose homogeneity less than 10% was proved by the wedge filter for TBI. (author)

  13. Seismic characterization of a `compound tectonic wedge` beneath the Rocky Mountain foreland basin, Alberta

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lawton, D. C.; Sukaramongkol, C.; Spratt, D. A. [Calgary Univ., AB (Canada). Dept. of Geology and Geophysics

    1996-06-01

    The detailed internal geometry of a `compound tectonic wedge` beneath an eastward-dipping homocline in the Sundre area of southern Alberta was described. Data for the description was obtained by interpreting reflection seismic data. The wedge has been driven into the foreland succession beneath the gently dipping upper detachment which occurs within coal horizons of the Upper Brazeau Group. Shape of the upper detachment near its toe indicates that rocks in its hanging wall were decoupled from strain associated with forward emplacement of the wedge. Folding of the upper detachment occurs in the hinterland region of the wedge, with a new upper detachment developing above the fold. Emplacement of the wedge is suspected to be the result of excess pore fluid pressure, although proof of this happening awaits quantification of the mechanical model. 25 refs., 8 figs.

  14. Magnetization study of interlayer exchange in semiconductor EuS-PbS ferromagnetic wedge multilayers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kowalczyk, L.; Osinniy, V.; Chernyshova, M.; Dziawa, P.; Boratynski, A.; Story, T.; Smits, C.J.P.; Swagten, H.J.M.; Sipatov, A.Yu.; Volobuev, V.V.

    2006-01-01

    Interlayer coupling was experimentally studied in semiconductor EuS-PbS ferromagnetic superlattice wedge structures grown on KCl (0 0 1) substrates with the wedges covering the semiconductor nonmagnetic PbS spacer layer thickness from 0.3 to 6 nm. Structural parameters of the wedges were examined by X-ray diffraction analysis of EuS-PbS superlattice period. Measurements of magnetic hysteresis loops of EuS-PbS structures were performed by both SQUID (for small terminal parts of the wedge) and MOKE (magneto-optical analysis along the wedge) magnetometry. A strong decrease of magnetic remanence and an increase of saturation field observed for EuS-PbS structures with the PbS spacer thickness decreasing below about 1.5 nm is discussed in terms of the influence of antiferromagnetic interlayer coupling

  15. FY1995 development of micromachine technology based on insects; 1995 nendo konchu wo kihan to suru micromachine gijutsu no kakuritsu to jitsuyoka

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1997-03-01

    If we develop micromachines by reducing simply the size of conventional mechanical systems, we cannot get sufficient performances of them because of scale-effect. Small natural creatures, insects, have very good structures and functions reasonable for their small size. In this research, basic characteristics of sensors, actuators, information processing functions, etc. of insects are studied and artificial systems similar to them are developed for industrial application. (1) Compound eyes: Insect compound eyes is the visual sensor which is composed of microlenses which are distributed three-dimensionally, receptors which vibrate with small amplitude around an optical axis and neural networks. In this research, the large scale model (several centimeters sized) of insect compound eyes has been developed. (2) Pheromone sensor: Pheromone gas sensor has been made of real male silkworm moth antenae. This sensor has been proved to work well as the female pheromone detector. This sensor was installed at the nose part of a wheeled mobile robot and this robot was observed to act like a real silkworm moth subjected to female pheromone stream. (3) Electrostatic microactuator: Generally speaking, high voltage(higher than 100V) electric power is necessary to actuate the electrostatic actuator. It was considered to be impossible to actuate them directly from CMOS. In this research, a new electrostatic actuator which can be actuated with less than 10V voltage can cause a fairly large displacement. (4) Hydraulic actuator: For micromachines, hydraulic pressure will be applicable for actuation. Structures may be simple and scale effect may give an advantageous characteristics for microsize. A butterfly-type flying robot was developed and it flied up along a vertical bar. (NEDO)

  16. The Laser MicroJet (LMJ): a multi-solution technology for high quality micro-machining

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mai, Tuan Anh; Richerzhagen, Bernold; Snowdon, Paul C.; Wood, David; Maropoulos, Paul G.

    2007-02-01

    The field of laser micromachining is highly diverse. There are many different types of lasers available in the market. Due to their differences in irradiating wavelength, output power and pulse characteristic they can be selected for different applications depending on material and feature size [1]. The main issues by using these lasers are heat damages, contamination and low ablation rates. This report examines on the application of the Laser MicroJet(R) (LMJ), a unique combination of a laser beam with a hair-thin water jet as a universal tool for micro-machining of MEMS substrates, as well as ferrous and non-ferrous materials. The materials include gallium arsenide (GaAs) & silicon wafers, steel, tantalum and alumina ceramic. A Nd:YAG laser operating at 1064 nm (infra red) and frequency doubled 532 nm (green) were employed for the micro-machining of these materials.

  17. Isolating active orogenic wedge deformation in the southern Subandes of Bolivia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weiss, Jonathan R.; Brooks, Benjamin A.; Foster, James H.; Bevis, Michael; Echalar, Arturo; Caccamise, Dana; Heck, Jacob; Kendrick, Eric; Ahlgren, Kevin; Raleigh, David; Smalley, Robert; Vergani, Gustavo

    2016-08-01

    A new GPS-derived surface velocity field for the central Andean backarc permits an assessment of orogenic wedge deformation across the southern Subandes of Bolivia, where recent studies suggest that great earthquakes (>Mw 8) are possible. We find that the backarc is not isolated from the main plate boundary seismic cycle. Rather, signals from subduction zone earthquakes contaminate the velocity field at distances greater than 800 km from the Chile trench. Two new wedge-crossing velocity profiles, corrected for seasonal and earthquake affects, reveal distinct regions that reflect (1) locking of the main plate boundary across the high Andes, (2) the location of and loading rate at the back of orogenic wedge, and (3) an east flank velocity gradient indicative of décollement locking beneath the Subandes. Modeling of the Subandean portions of the profiles indicates along-strike variations in the décollement locked width (WL) and wedge loading rate; the northern wedge décollement has a WL of ~100 km while accumulating slip at a rate of ~14 mm/yr, whereas the southern wedge has a WL of ~61 km and a slip rate of ~7 mm/yr. When compared to Quaternary estimates of geologic shortening and evidence for Holocene internal wedge deformation, the new GPS-derived wedge loading rates may indicate that the southern wedge is experiencing a phase of thickening via reactivation of preexisting internal structures. In contrast, we suspect that the northern wedge is undergoing an accretion or widening phase primarily via slip on relatively young thrust-front faults.

  18. Two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy with birefringent wedges

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Réhault, Julien; Maiuri, Margherita; Oriana, Aurelio; Cerullo, Giulio [IFN-CNR, Dipartimento di Fisica, Politecnico di Milano, Piazza Leonardo da Vinci 32, 20133 Milano (Italy)

    2014-12-15

    We present a simple experimental setup for performing two-dimensional (2D) electronic spectroscopy in the partially collinear pump-probe geometry. The setup uses a sequence of birefringent wedges to create and delay a pair of phase-locked, collinear pump pulses, with extremely high phase stability and reproducibility. Continuous delay scanning is possible without any active stabilization or position tracking, and allows to record rapidly and easily 2D spectra. The setup works over a broad spectral range from the ultraviolet to the near-IR, it is compatible with few-optical-cycle pulses and can be easily reconfigured to two-colour operation. A simple method for scattering suppression is also introduced. As a proof of principle, we present degenerate and two-color 2D spectra of the light-harvesting complex 1 of purple bacteria.

  19. Computer dosimetry for flattened and wedged fast-neutron beams

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hogstrom, K.R.; Smith, A.R.; Almond, P.R.; Otte, V.A.; Smathers, J.B.

    1976-01-01

    Beam flattening by the use of polyethylene filters has been developed for the 50-MeV d→Be fast-neutron therapy beam at the Texas AandM Variable-Energy Cyclotron (TAMVEC) as a result of the need for a more uniform dose distribution at depth within the patient. A computer algorithm has been developed that allows the use of a modified decrement line method to calculate dose distributions; standard decrement line methods do not apply because of off-axis peaking. The dose distributions for measured flattened beams are transformed into distributions that are physically equivalent to an unflattened distribution. In the transformed space, standard decrement line theory yields a distribution for any field size which, by applying the inverse transformation, generates the flattened dose distribution, including the off-axis peaking. A semiempirical model has been constructed that allows the calculation of dose distributions for wedged beams from open-beam data

  20. Metamaterials based on wedge-shaped electrodynamic structures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mitrokhin Vladimir

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The paper studies a possibility of simulation of artificial composite media with negative values of the real part of the equivalent dielectric (magnetic permittivity, by the use of segments of hollow composite waveguides with cylindrical guided waves in evanescent mode. Reactive evanescent fields of wedge-shaped waveguide eigenmodes are formed in the evanescent region before the critical section of the waveguide which separates the quasistatic field region from the distributing field of the evanescent waveguide mode. The possibility of simulation is determined by the equivalence of dispersion equation of the eigenmode propagation constant and the dispersion equation for the electric (magnetic permittivity of plasma-like medium if cut-off frequency and electric (magnetic plasma frequency of the medium are equal.

  1. Lower limit of strength wedge-type anchor bolts

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Arnedo Pena, A.; Frances Urmeneta, M.

    1998-01-01

    Simple expansion bolts, with a split expansion ring and a threaded bolt with an integral cone expander, called wedge type, are very used in securing and anchoring structures. The anchorage is obtained by a mechanism of torque-controlled expansion. Although less resistant than other types, its easy installation and low cost make them very competitive in light structures. In this paper, the minimum capacity values are analysed, when they are used to anchor safety-related equipment in NPP. The EPRI criteria developed in response to USI A-46 are applied and complemented by the new CEB Anchorage Design Guide. The results are compared with the information from european manufactures, adopting different safety factors for cracked and non-cracked concrete. With adequate control and inspection measures, including areas of noticeable cracking of concrete. minimum values for equipment can be obtained satisfying the strictest seismic validation requirements. (Author) 5 refs

  2. Arrayed architectures for multi-stage Si-micromachined high-flow Knudsen pumps

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Qin, Yutao; An, Seungdo; Gianchandani, Yogesh B

    2015-01-01

    This paper reports an evaluation and a comparison of two architectures for implementing Si-micromachined high-flow Knudsen pumps. Knudsen pumps, which operate on the principle of thermal transpiration, have been shown to have great promise for micro-scale gas phase fluidic systems such as micro gas chromatographs. Simultaneously achieving both a high flow rate and adequate blocking pressure has been a persistent challenge, which is addressed in this work by combining multiple pumps in series and addressing the resulting challenges in thermal management. The basic building block is a Si-micromachined pump with  ≈100 000 parallel channels in a 4 mm  ×  6 mm footprint. In the primary approach, multiple pump stages are stacked vertically with interleaved Si-micromachined spacers. A stacked 4-stage Knudsen pump has a form factor of 10 mm  ×  8 mm  ×  6 mm. In an alternate approach, multiple stages are arranged in a planar array. The experimental results demonstrate multiplication of the output pressure head with the number of stages, while the flow rate is maintained. For example, a stacked 4-stage Knudsen pump with 8 W power operated at atmospheric pressure provided a blocking pressure of 0.255 kPa, which was 3.6  ×  of that provided by a single-stage pump with 2 W power; while both provided a  ≈  30 sccm maximum flow rate. The performance can be customized for practical applications such as micro gas chromatography. (paper)

  3. High definition surface micromachining of LiNbO 3 by ion implantation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiarini, M.; Bentini, G. G.; Bianconi, M.; De Nicola, P.

    2010-10-01

    High Energy Ion Implantation (HEII) of both medium and light mass ions has been successfully applied for the surface micromachining of single crystal LiNbO 3 (LN) substrates. It has been demonstrated that the ion implantation process generates high differential etch rates in the LN implanted areas, when suitable implantation parameters, such as ion species, fluence and energy, are chosen. In particular, when traditional LN etching solutions are applied to suitably ion implanted regions, etch rates values up to three orders of magnitude higher than the typical etching rates of the virgin material, are registered. Further, the enhancement in the etching rate has been observed on x, y and z-cut single crystalline material, and, due to the physical nature of the implantation process, it is expected that it can be equivalently applied also to substrates with different crystallographic orientations. This technique, associated with standard photolithographic technologies, allows to generate in a fast and accurate way very high aspect ratio relief micrometric structures on LN single crystal surface. In this work a description of the developed technology is reported together with some examples of produced micromachined structures: in particular very precisely defined self sustaining suspended structures, such as beams and membranes, generated on LN substrates, are presented. The developed technology opens the way to actual three dimensional micromachining of LN single crystals substrates and, due to the peculiar properties characterising this material, (pyroelectric, electro-optic, acousto-optic, etc.), it allows the design and the production of complex integrated elements, characterised by micrometric features and suitable for the generation of advanced Micro Electro Optical Systems (MEOS).

  4. Application of stepping motor

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1980-10-01

    This book is divided into three parts, which is about practical using of stepping motor. The first part has six chapters. The contents of the first part are about stepping motor, classification of stepping motor, basic theory og stepping motor, characteristic and basic words, types and characteristic of stepping motor in hybrid type and basic control of stepping motor. The second part deals with application of stepping motor with hardware of stepping motor control, stepping motor control by microcomputer and software of stepping motor control. The last part mentions choice of stepping motor system, examples of stepping motor, measurement of stepping motor and practical cases of application of stepping motor.

  5. Dosimetric parameters of enhanced dynamic wedge for treatment planning and verification

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Leavitt, Dennis D.; Lee, Wing Lok; Gaffney, David K.

    1996-01-01

    Purpose/Objective: Enhanced Dynamic Wedge (EDW) is an intensity-modulated radiotherapy technique in which one collimating jaw sweeps across the field to define a desired wedge dose distribution while dose rate is modified according to jaw position. This tool enables discrete or continuous wedge angles from zero to sixty degrees for field widths from three cm to 30 cm in the direction of the wedge, and up to 40 cm perpendicular to the wedge direction. Additionally, asymmetric wedge fields not centered on the line through isocenter can be created for applications such as tangential breast irradiation. The unique range of field shapes and wedge angles introduce a new set of dosimetric challenges to be resolved before routine clinical use of EDW, and especially require that a simple set of independent dose calculation and verification techniques be developed to check computerized treatment planning results. Using terminology in common use in treatment planning, this work defines the effective wedge factor vs. field width and wedge angle, evaluates the depth dose vs. open field values, defines primary intensity functions from which specific dynamic wedges can be calculated in treatment planning systems, and describes the technique for independent calculation of Monitor Units for EDW fields. Materials and Methods: Using 6- and 18-MV beams from a CI2100C, EDW beam profiles were measured in water phantom for depths from near-surface to 30 cm for the full range of field widths and wedge angles using a linear detector array of 25 energy-compensated diodes. Asymmetric wedge field profiles were likewise measured. Depth doses were measured in water phantom using an ionization chamber sequentially positioned to depths of 30 cm. Effective wedge factors for the full range of field widths and wedge angles were measured using an ionization chamber in water-equivalent plastic at a depth of 10 cm on central axis. Dose profiles were calculated by computer as the summation of a series

  6. Monolithic integration of a micromachined piezoresistive flow sensor

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li, Dan; Zhao, Tao; Yang, Zhenchuan; Zhang, Dacheng

    2010-01-01

    In this paper, a monolithic integrated piezoresistive flow sensor is presented, which was fabricated with an intermediate CMOS (complementary metal-oxide semiconductor) MEMS (micro electro mechanical system) process compatible with integrated pressure sensors. Four symmetrically arranged silicon diaphragms with piezoresistors on them were used to sense the drag force induced by the input gas flow. A signal conditioning CMOS circuit with a temperature compensation module was designed and fabricated simultaneously on the same chip with an increase of the total chip area by only 35%. An extra step of boron implantation and annealing was inserted into the standard CMOS process to form the piezoresistors. KOH anisotropic etching from the backside and deep reactive ion etching (DRIE) from the front side were combined to realize the silicon diaphragms. The integrated flow sensor was packaged and tested. The testing results indicated that the addition of piezoresistor formation and structure releasing did not significantly change any of the circuitry characteristics. The measured sensor output has a quadratic relation with the input flow rate of the fluid as predicted. The tested resolution of the sensor is less than 0.1 L min −1 with a measurement range of 0.1–5 L min −1 and the sensitivity is better than 40 mV per (L min −1 ) with a measurement range of 4–5 L min −1 . The measured noise floor of the sensor is 21.7 µV rtHz −1 .

  7. Project: Micromachined High-Frequency Circuits For Sub-mm-wave Sensors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papapolymerou, Ioannis John

    2004-01-01

    A novel micromachined resonator at 45 GHz based on a defect in a periodic electromagnetic bandgap structure (EBG) and a two-pole Tchebysbev filter with 1.4% 0.15 dB equiripple bandwidth and 2.3 dB loss employing this resonator are presented in this letter. The periodic bandgap structure is realized on a 400 micron thick high-resistivity silicon wafer using deep reactive ion etching techniques. The resonator and filter can be accessed via coplanar waveguide feeds.

  8. A novel hybrid surface micromachined segmented mirror for large aperture laser applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Jie; Chen, Haiqing; Yu, Hongbin

    2006-07-01

    A novel hybrid surface micromachined segmented mirror array is described. This device is capable of scaling to large apertures for correcting time-varying aberrations in laser applications. Each mirror is composed of bottom electrode, support part, and mirror plate, in which a T-shaped beam structure is used to support the mirror plate. It can provide mirror with vertical movement and rotation around two horizontal axes. The test results show that the maximum deflection along the vertical direction of the mirror plate is 2 microns, while the rotation angles around x and y axes are +-2.3 deg. and +-1.45 deg., respectively.

  9. Channeling-based collimators for generation of microbeams produced by silicon micromachining technology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Guidi, V.; Antonini, A.; Milan, E.; Ronzoni, A.; Martinelli, G.; Biryukov, V.M.; Chesnokov, Yu.A.

    2006-01-01

    The growing interest on micro-beams in recent years and the combined development of channeling technology in high-energy physics have opened the way to new concepts for micro-beams devices. Silicon micromachining technology is here applied to manufacture micro-collimators in inexpensive and feasible ways. Both dry and wet etchings can be employed for the purpose, though the latter technique appears to be cheaper and easier. Two designs for micro-collimator devices have been considered and preliminary samples have been produced accordingly

  10. Nickel silicide thin films as masking and structural layers for silicon bulk micro-machining by potassium hydroxide wet etching

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bhaskaran, M; Sriram, S; Sim, L W

    2008-01-01

    This paper studies the feasibility of using titanium and nickel silicide thin films as mask materials for silicon bulk micro-machining. Thin films of nickel silicide were found to be more resistant to wet etching in potassium hydroxide. The use of nickel silicide as a structural material, by fabricating micro-beams of varying dimensions, is demonstrated. The micro-structures were realized using these thin films with wet etching using potassium hydroxide solution on (1 0 0) and (1 1 0) silicon substrates. These results show that nickel silicide is a suitable alternative to silicon nitride for silicon bulk micro-machining

  11. Numerical modelling of micro-machining of f.c.c. single crystal: Influence of strain gradients

    KAUST Repository

    Demiral, Murat

    2014-11-01

    A micro-machining process becomes increasingly important with the continuous miniaturization of components used in various fields from military to civilian applications. To characterise underlying micromechanics, a 3D finite-element model of orthogonal micro-machining of f.c.c. single crystal copper was developed. The model was implemented in a commercial software ABAQUS/Explicit employing a user-defined subroutine VUMAT. Strain-gradient crystal-plasticity and conventional crystal-plasticity theories were used to demonstrate the influence of pre-existing and evolved strain gradients on the cutting process for different combinations of crystal orientations and cutting directions. Crown Copyright © 2014.

  12. Micromachined three-dimensional electrode arrays for transcutaneous nerve tracking

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rajaraman, Swaminathan; Bragg, Julian A.; Ross, James D.; Allen, Mark G.

    2011-08-01

    We report the development of metal transfer micromolded (MTM) three-dimensional microelectrode arrays (3D MEAs) for a transcutaneous nerve tracking application. The measurements of electrode-skin-electrode impedance (ESEI), electromyography (EMG) and nerve conduction utilizing these minimally invasive 3D MEAs are demonstrated in this paper. The 3D MEAs used in these measurements consist of a metalized micro-tower array that can penetrate the outer layers of the skin in a painless fashion and are fabricated using MTM technology. Two techniques, an inclined UV lithography approach and a double-side exposure of thick negative tone resist, have been developed to fabricate the 3D MEA master structure. The MEAs themselves are fabricated from the master structure utilizing micromolding techniques. Metal patterns are transferred during the micromolding process, thereby ensuring reduced process steps compared to traditional silicon-based approaches. These 3D MEAs have been packaged utilizing biocompatible Kapton® substrates. ESEI measurements have been carried out on test human subjects with standard commercial wet electrodes as a reference. The 3D MEAs demonstrate an order of magnitude lower ESEI (normalized to area) compared to wet electrodes for an area that is 12.56 times smaller. This compares well with other demonstrated approaches in literature. For a nerve tracking demonstration, we have chosen EMG and nerve conduction measurements on test human subjects. The 3D MEAs show 100% improvement in signal power and SNR/√area as compared to standard electrodes. They also demonstrate larger amplitude signals and faster rise times during nerve conduction measurements. We believe that this microfabrication and packaging approach scales well to large-area, high-density arrays required for applications like nerve tracking. This development will increase the stimulation and recording fidelity of skin surface electrodes, while increasing their spatial resolution by an order of

  13. Micromachined three-dimensional electrode arrays for transcutaneous nerve tracking

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rajaraman, Swaminathan; Allen, Mark G; Bragg, Julian A; Ross, James D

    2011-01-01

    We report the development of metal transfer micromolded (MTM) three-dimensional microelectrode arrays (3D MEAs) for a transcutaneous nerve tracking application. The measurements of electrode–skin–electrode impedance (ESEI), electromyography (EMG) and nerve conduction utilizing these minimally invasive 3D MEAs are demonstrated in this paper. The 3D MEAs used in these measurements consist of a metalized micro-tower array that can penetrate the outer layers of the skin in a painless fashion and are fabricated using MTM technology. Two techniques, an inclined UV lithography approach and a double-side exposure of thick negative tone resist, have been developed to fabricate the 3D MEA master structure. The MEAs themselves are fabricated from the master structure utilizing micromolding techniques. Metal patterns are transferred during the micromolding process, thereby ensuring reduced process steps compared to traditional silicon-based approaches. These 3D MEAs have been packaged utilizing biocompatible Kapton® substrates. ESEI measurements have been carried out on test human subjects with standard commercial wet electrodes as a reference. The 3D MEAs demonstrate an order of magnitude lower ESEI (normalized to area) compared to wet electrodes for an area that is 12.56 times smaller. This compares well with other demonstrated approaches in literature. For a nerve tracking demonstration, we have chosen EMG and nerve conduction measurements on test human subjects. The 3D MEAs show 100% improvement in signal power and SNR/√area as compared to standard electrodes. They also demonstrate larger amplitude signals and faster rise times during nerve conduction measurements. We believe that this microfabrication and packaging approach scales well to large-area, high-density arrays required for applications like nerve tracking. This development will increase the stimulation and recording fidelity of skin surface electrodes, while increasing their spatial resolution by an order

  14. Late Holocene ice wedges near Fairbanks, Alaska, USA: Environmental setting and history of growth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamilton, T.D.; Ager, T.A.; Robinson, S.W.

    1983-01-01

    Test trenches excavated into muskeg near Fairbanks in 1969 exposed a polygonal network of active ice wedges. The wedges occur in peat that has accumulated since about 3500 yr BP and have grown episodically as the permafrost table fluctuated in response to fires, other local site conditions and perhaps regional climatic changes. Radiocarbon dates suggest one or two episodes of ice-wedge growth between about 3500 and 2000 yr BP as woody peat accumulated at the site. Subsequent wedge truncation evidently followed a fire that charred the peat. Younger peat exhibits facies changes between sedge-rich components that filled troughs over the ice wedges and woody bryophytic deposits that formed beyond the troughs. A final episode of wedge development took place within the past few hundred years. Pollen data from the site indicate that boreal forest was present throughout the past 6000 yr, but that it underwent a gradual transition from a predominantly deciduous to a spruce-dominated assemblage. This change may reflect either local site conditions or a more general climatic shift to cooler, moister summers in late Holocene time. The history of ice-wedge growth shows that wedges can form and grow to more than 1 m apparent width under mean annual temperatures that probably are close to those of the Fairbanks area today (-3.5°C) and under vegetation cover similar to that of the interior Alaskan boreal forest. The commonly held belief that ice wedges develop only below mean annual air temperatures of -6 to -8°C in the zone of continuous permafrost is invalid.

  15. Two brittle ductile transitions in subduction wedges, as revealed by topography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thissen, C.; Brandon, M. T.

    2013-12-01

    Subduction wedges contain two brittle ductile transitions. One transition occurs within the wedge interior, and a second transition occurs along the decollement. The decollement typically has faster strain rates, which suggests that the brittle ductile transition along the decollement will be more rearward (deeper) than the transition within the interior. However, the presence of distinct rheologies or other factors such as pore fluid pressure along the decollement may reverse the order of the brittle-ductile transitions. We adopt a solution by Williams et al., (1994) to invert for these brittle ductile transitions using the wedge surface topography. At present, this model does not include an s point or sediment loading atop the wedge. The Hellenic wedge, however, as exposed in Crete presents an ideal setting to test these ideas. We find that the broad high of the Mediterranean ridge represents the coulomb frictional part of the Hellenic wedge. The rollover in topography north of the ridge results from curvature of the down going plate, creating a negative alpha depression in the vicinity of the Strabo, Pliny, and Ionian 'troughs' south of Crete. A steep topographic rise out of these troughs and subsequent flattening reflects the brittle ductile transition at depth in both the decollement and the wedge interior. Crete exposes the high-pressure viscous core of the wedge, and pressure solution textures provide additional evidence for viscous deformation in the rearward part of the wedge. The location of the decollement brittle ductile transition has been previously poorly constrained, and Crete has never experienced a subduction zone earthquake in recorded history. Williams, C. A., et al., (1994). Effect of the brittle ductile transition on the topography of compressive mountain belts on Earth and Venus. Journal of Geophysical Research Solid Earth

  16. Observations of Lower Mississippi River Estuarine Dynamics: Effects of the Salt Wedge on Sediment Deposition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramirez, M. T.; Allison, M. A.

    2017-12-01

    The lowermost Mississippi River is subject to salt-wedge estuarine conditions during seasonally low flow, when seaward flow is unable to overcome density stratification. Previous studies in the Mississippi River salt wedge have shown the deposition of a fine sediment layer accumulating several mm/day beneath the reach where the salt wedge is present. Field studies were conducted during low flow in 2012-2015 utilizing ADCP, CTD, LISST, and physical samples to observe the physics of the salt wedge reach and to calculate rates and character of sediment trapping beneath the salt wedge. The field observations were summarized using a two-layer box-model representation of the reach to calculate water and sediment budgets entering, exiting, and stored within the reach. The salt wedge reach was found to be net depositional at rates up to 1.8 mm/day. The mechanism for transferring sediment mass from the downstream-flowing fluvial layer to the upstream-flowing marine layer appears to be flocculation, evidenced in LISST data by a spike in sediment particle diameters at the halocline. Applying reach-averaged rates of sediment trapping to a time-integrated model of salt-wedge position, we calculated annual totals ranging from 0.025 to 2.2 million tons of sediment deposited beneath the salt wedge, depending on salt-wedge persistence and upstream extent. Most years this seasonal deposit is remobilized during spring flood following the low-flow estuarine season, which may affect the timing of sediment delivery to the Gulf of Mexico, as well as particulate organic carbon, whose transport trajectory mirrors that of mineral sediment. These results are also relevant to ongoing dredging efforts necessary to maintain the economically-important navigation pathway through the lower Mississippi River, as well as planned efforts to use Mississippi River sedimentary resources to build land in the degrading Louisiana deltaic coast.

  17. Utilization of an electronic portal imaging device for measurement of dynamic wedge data

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Elder, Eric S.; Miner, Marc S.; Butker, Elizabeth K.; Sutton, Danny S.; Davis, Lawrence W.

    1996-01-01

    Purpose/Objective: Due to the motion of the collimator during dynamic wedge treatments, the conventional method of collecting comprehensive wedge data with a water tank and a scanning ionization chamber is obsolete. It is the objective of this work to demonstrate the use of an electronic portal imaging device (EPID) and software to accomplish this task. Materials and Methods: A Varian Clinac[reg] 2300 C/D, equipped with a PortalVision TM EPID and Dosimetry Research Mode experimental software, was used to produce the radiation field. The Dosimetry Research Mode experimental software allows for a band of 10 of 256 high voltage electrodes to be continuously read and averaged by the 256 electrometer electrodes. The file that is produced contains data relating to the integrated ionization at each of the 256 points, essentially the cross plane beam profile. Software was developed using Microsoft C ++ to reformat the data for import into a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet allowing for easy mathematical manipulation and graphical display. Beam profiles were measured by the EPID with a 100 cm TSD for various field sizes. Each field size was measured open, steel wedged, and dynamically wedged. Scanning ionization chamber measurements performed in a water tank were compared to the open and steel wedged fields. Ionization chamber measurements taken in a water tank were compared with the dynamically wedged measurements. For the EPID measurements the depth was varied using Gammex RMI Solid Water TM placed directly above the EPID sensitive volume. Bolus material was placed between the Solid Water TM and the EPID to avoid an air gap. Results: Comparison of EPID measurements with those from an ion chamber in a water tank showed a discrepancy of ∼5%. Scans were successfully obtained for open, steel wedged and dynamically wedged beams. Software has been developed to allow for easy graphical display of beam profiles. Conclusions: Measurement of dynamic wedge data proves to be easily

  18. Step out - Step in Sequencing Games

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Musegaas, M.; Borm, P.E.M.; Quant, M.

    2014-01-01

    In this paper a new class of relaxed sequencing games is introduced: the class of Step out - Step in sequencing games. In this relaxation any player within a coalition is allowed to step out from his position in the processing order and to step in at any position later in the processing order.

  19. Step out-step in sequencing games

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Musegaas, Marieke; Borm, Peter; Quant, Marieke

    2015-01-01

    In this paper a new class of relaxed sequencing games is introduced: the class of Step out–Step in sequencing games. In this relaxation any player within a coalition is allowed to step out from his position in the processing order and to step in at any position later in the processing order. First,

  20. Millimeter length micromachining using a heavy ion nuclear microprobe with standard magnetic scanning

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nesprías, F.; Debray, M.E.; Davidson, J.; Kreiner, A.J.

    2013-01-01

    In order to increase the scanning length of our microprobe, we have developed an irradiation procedure suitable for use in any nuclear microprobe, extending at least up to 400% the length of our heavy ion direct writing facility using standard magnetic exploration. Although this method is limited to patterns of a few millimeters in only one direction, it is useful for the manufacture of curved waveguides, optical devices such Mach–Zehnder modulators, directional couplers as well as channels for micro-fluidic applications. As an example, this technique was applied to the fabrication of 3 mm 3D-Mach–Zehnder modulators in lithium niobate with short Y input/output branches and long shaped parallel-capacitor control electrodes. To extend and improve the quality of the machined structures we developed new scanning control software in LabView™ platform. The new code supports an external dose normalization, electrostatic beam blanking and is capable of scanning figures at 16 bit resolution using a National Instruments™ PCI-6731 High-Speed I/O card. A deep and vertical micromachining process using swift 35 Cl ions 70 MeV bombarding energy and direct write patterning was performed on LiNbO 3 , a material which exhibits a strong natural anisotropy to conventional etching. The micromachined structures show the feasibility of this method for manufacturing micro-fluidic channels as well

  1. Millimeter length micromachining using a heavy ion nuclear microprobe with standard magnetic scanning

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nesprías, F. [Gerencia de Investigación y Aplicaciones, Comisión Nacional de Energía Atómica, Av. Gral Paz 1499 (1650), San Martín, Buenos Aires (Argentina); Debray, M.E., E-mail: debray@tandar.cnea.gov.ar [Gerencia de Investigación y Aplicaciones, Comisión Nacional de Energía Atómica, Av. Gral Paz 1499 (1650), San Martín, Buenos Aires (Argentina); Escuela de Ciencia y Tecnología. Universidad Nacional de Gral. San Martín, M. De Irigoyen 3100 (1650), San Martín, Buenos Aires (Argentina); Davidson, J. [Gerencia de Investigación y Aplicaciones, Comisión Nacional de Energía Atómica, Av. Gral Paz 1499 (1650), San Martín, Buenos Aires (Argentina); CONICET, Avda. Rivadavia 1917 (C1033AAJ), Ciudad Autónoma de Buenos Aires (Argentina); Kreiner, A.J. [Gerencia de Investigación y Aplicaciones, Comisión Nacional de Energía Atómica, Av. Gral Paz 1499 (1650), San Martín, Buenos Aires (Argentina); Escuela de Ciencia y Tecnología. Universidad Nacional de Gral. San Martín, M. De Irigoyen 3100 (1650), San Martín, Buenos Aires (Argentina); CONICET, Avda. Rivadavia 1917 (C1033AAJ), Ciudad Autónoma de Buenos Aires (Argentina); and others

    2013-04-01

    In order to increase the scanning length of our microprobe, we have developed an irradiation procedure suitable for use in any nuclear microprobe, extending at least up to 400% the length of our heavy ion direct writing facility using standard magnetic exploration. Although this method is limited to patterns of a few millimeters in only one direction, it is useful for the manufacture of curved waveguides, optical devices such Mach–Zehnder modulators, directional couplers as well as channels for micro-fluidic applications. As an example, this technique was applied to the fabrication of 3 mm 3D-Mach–Zehnder modulators in lithium niobate with short Y input/output branches and long shaped parallel-capacitor control electrodes. To extend and improve the quality of the machined structures we developed new scanning control software in LabView™ platform. The new code supports an external dose normalization, electrostatic beam blanking and is capable of scanning figures at 16 bit resolution using a National Instruments™ PCI-6731 High-Speed I/O card. A deep and vertical micromachining process using swift {sup 35}Cl ions 70 MeV bombarding energy and direct write patterning was performed on LiNbO{sub 3}, a material which exhibits a strong natural anisotropy to conventional etching. The micromachined structures show the feasibility of this method for manufacturing micro-fluidic channels as well.

  2. A LabVIEWTM-based scanning and control system for proton beam micromachining

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bettiol, Andrew A.; Kan, J.A. van; Sum, T.C.; Watt, F.

    2001-01-01

    LabVIEW TM is steadily gaining in popularity as the programming language of choice for scientific data acquisition and control. This is due to the vast array of measurement instruments and data acquisition cards supported by the LabVIEW TM environment, and the relative ease with which advanced software can be programmed. Furthermore, virtual instruments that are designed for a given system can be easily ported to other LabVIEW TM platforms and hardware. This paper describes the new LabVIEW TM based scanning and control system developed specifically for proton beam micromachining (PBM) applications. The new system is capable of scanning figures at 16-bit resolution with improved sub-microsecond scan rates. Support for electrostatic beam blanking and external dose normalization using a TTL signal have been implemented. The new software incorporates a semi-automated dose calibration system, and a number of novel dose normalization methods. Limitations of the current beam scanning hardware are discussed in light of new results obtained from micromachining experiments performed in SU-8 photoresist

  3. A Novel Piezo-Actuator-Sensor Micromachine for Mechanical Characterization of Micro-Specimens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leila Ladani

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Difficulties associated with testing and characterization of materials at microscale demands for new technologies and devices that are capable of measuring forces and strains at microscale. To address this issue, a novel electroactive-based micro-electro-mechanical machine is designed. The micromachine is comprised of two electroactive (piezoelectric micro-elements mounted on a rigid frame. Electrical activation of one of the elements causes it to expand and induce a stress in the intervening micro-specimen. The response of the microspecimen to the stress is measured by the deformation and thereby voltage/resistance induced in the second electro-active element. The concept is theoretically proven using analytical modeling in conjunction with non-linear, three dimensional finite element analyses for the micromachine. Correlation of the output voltage to the specimen stiffness is shown. It is also demonstrated through finite element and analytical analysis that this technique is capable of detecting non-linear behavior of materials. A characteristic curve for an isotropic specimen exhibiting linear elastic behavior is developed. Application of the proposed device in measuring coefficient of thermal expansion is explored and analytical analysis is conducted.

  4. Effects of Micromachining Processes on Electro-Osmotic Flow Mobility of Glass Surfaces

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Norihisa Miki

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Silica glass is frequently used as a device material for micro/nano fluidic devices due to its excellent properties, such as transparency and chemical resistance. Wet etching by hydrofluoric acid and dry etching by neutral loop discharge (NLD plasma etching are currently used to micromachine glass to form micro/nano fluidic channels. Electro-osmotic flow (EOF is one of the most effective methods to drive liquids into the channels. EOF mobility is affected by a property of the micromachined glass surfaces, which includes surface roughness that is determined by the manufacturing processes. In this paper, we investigate the effect of micromaching processes on the glass surface topography and the EOF mobility. We prepared glass surfaces by either wet etching or by NLD plasma etching, investigated the surface topography using atomic force microscopy, and attempted to correlate it with EOF generated in the micro-channels of the machined glass. Experiments revealed that the EOF mobility strongly depends on the surface roughness, and therefore upon the fabrication process used. A particularly strong dependency was observed when the surface roughness was on the order of the electric double layer thickness or below. We believe that the correlation described in this paper can be of great help in the design of micro/nano fluidic devices.

  5. Variations in depth-dose data between open and wedge fields for 4-MV x-rays

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sewchand, W.; Khan, F.M.; Williamson, J.

    1978-01-01

    Central-axis depth-dose data for 4-MV x rays, including tissue-maximum ratios, were measured for wedge fields. Comparison with corresponding open-field data revealed differences in magnitude which increased with depth, field size, and wedge thickness. However, phantom scatter correction factors for the wedge fields differed less than 1% from corresponding open-field factors. The differences in central-axis percent depth doses between the two types of fields indicate beam hardening by the wedge filter. This study also implies that the derivation of tissue-maximum ratios from central-axis percent depth is as valid for wedge as for open fields

  6. The effect of shoe design and lateral wedging on knee loading

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mølgaard, Carsten; Kersting, Uwe G.

    The increasing number of patients with developing osteoarthritis is accompanied by a growing scientific interest in non-operative early treatment strategies. It is generally believed that laterally wedged insoles can change the distribution of the knee loading, but the importance of footwear design...... shoe were revealed. Conclusion: Lateral wedging is effective regardless of shoe design. Differences between the four neutral walking conditions underline the importance of footwear choice in individuals. It is safe to apply lateral wedges without jeopardizing muscular control during walking regardless...

  7. Physical optics-based diffraction coefficient for a wedge with different face impedances.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Umul, Yusuf Ziya

    2018-03-20

    A new diffraction field expression is introduced with the aid of the modified theory of physical optics for a wedge with different face impedances. First, the scattered geometrical optics fields are determined when both faces of the wedge are illuminated by the incident wave. The geometrical optics waves are then expressed in terms of the sum of two different fields that occur for different impedance wedges. The diffracted fields are determined for the two cases separately, and the total diffracted field is obtained as a sum of these waves. Lastly, the uniform field expressions are obtained, and the resultant fields are numerically compared with the solution of Maliuzhinets.

  8. Intercomparison of wedge factor for symmetric field and asymmetric field used 6MV linac

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ji, Youn Sang; Han, Jae Jin

    1999-01-01

    Therapy equipment have taken progress for Cancer make use of Radiation for the normal tissue system make much of important for shielding. In modern times independent jaw setting to used equipment as possible make use of asymmetric field. Therefore, the asymmetric field be leave out of consideration wedge factor because of with used wedge for the most of part. These experimentation find out have an effect on the dosimetry of out put compared with of the difference between the symmetric field and asymmetric field for the wedge factor

  9. Reduced knee joint loading with lateral and medial wedge insoles for management of knee osteoarthritis: a protocol for a randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewinson, Ryan T; Collins, Kelsey H; Vallerand, Isabelle A; Wiley, J Preston; Woodhouse, Linda J; Reimer, Raylene A; Worobets, Jay T; Herzog, Walter; Stefanyshyn, Darren J

    2014-12-03

    Knee osteoarthritis (OA) progression has been linked to increased peak external knee adduction moments (KAMs). Although some trials have attempted to reduce pain and improve function in OA by reducing KAMs with a wedged footwear insole intervention, KAM reduction has not been specifically controlled for in trial designs, potentially explaining the mixed results seen in the literature. Therefore, the primary purpose of this trial is to identify the effects of reduced KAMs on knee OA pain and function. Forty-six patients with radiographically confirmed diagnosis medial knee OA will be recruited for this 3 month randomized controlled trial. Recruitment will be from Alberta and surrounding areas. Eligibility criteria include being between the ages of 40 and 85 years, have knee OA primarily localized to the medial tibiofemoral compartment, based on the American College of Rheumatology diagnostic criteria and be classified as having a Kellgren-Lawrence grade of 1 to 3. Patients will visit the laboratory at baseline for testing that includes dual x-ray absorptiometry, biomechanical testing, and surveys (KOOS, PASE activity scale, UCLA activity scale, comfort visual analog scale). At baseline, patients will be randomized to either a wedged insole group to reduce KAMs, or a waitlist control group where no intervention is provided. The survey tests will be repeated at 3 months, and response to wedged insoles over 3 months will be evaluated. This study represents the first step in systematically evaluating the effects of reduced KAMs on knee OA management by using a patient-specific wedged insole prescription procedure rather than providing the same insole to all patients. The results of this trial will provide indications as to whether reduced KAMs are an effective strategy for knee OA management, and whether a personalized approach to footwear insole prescription is warranted. NCT02067208.

  10. Determination of young's modulus of PZT and CO80Ni20 thin films by means of micromachined cantilevers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nazeer, H.; Abelmann, Leon; Tas, Niels Roelof; van Honschoten, J.W.; Siekman, Martin Herman; Elwenspoek, Michael Curt

    2009-01-01

    This paper presents a technique to determine the Young’s modulus and residual stress of thin films using a simple micromachined silicon cantilever as the test structure. An analytical relation was developed based on the shift in resonance frequency caused by the addition of a thin film on the

  11. Numerical modelling of micro-machining of f.c.c. single crystal: Influence of strain gradients

    KAUST Repository

    Demiral, Murat; Roy, Anish; El Sayed, Tamer S.; Silberschmidt, Vadim V.

    2014-01-01

    of orthogonal micro-machining of f.c.c. single crystal copper was developed. The model was implemented in a commercial software ABAQUS/Explicit employing a user-defined subroutine VUMAT. Strain-gradient crystal-plasticity and conventional crystal

  12. RF Performance of a 600-720 GHz Sideband Separating Mixer with All-Copper Micromachined Waveguide Mixer Block

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mena, F. P.; Kooi, J.; Baryshev, A. M.; Lodewijk, C. F. J.; Klapwijk, T. M.; Wild, W.; Desmaris, V.; Meledin, D.; Pavolotsky, A.; Belitsky, V.; Wild, Wolfgang

    2008-01-01

    Here we report on the RF performance of a 2SB mixer (600-720 GHz) fabricated in a new method that combines traditional micromachining with waveguide components fabricated by photolithography and electroplating. The latter allows reaching, in a reproducible way, the stringent accuracies necessary for

  13. A novel surface micromachining process to fabricate AlN unimorph suspensions and its application for RF resonators

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Saravanan, S.; Saravanan, S.; Berenschot, Johan W.; Krijnen, Gijsbertus J.M.; Elwenspoek, Michael Curt

    2006-01-01

    A novel surface micromachining process is reported for aluminum nitride (AlN) thin films to fabricate piezoelectric unimorph suspension devices for micro actuator applications. Wet anisotropic etching of AlN thin film is used with a Cr metal mask layer in the microfabrication process. Tetra methyl

  14. The influence of wedge diffuser blade number and divergence angle on the performance of a high pressure ratio centrifugal compressor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yi; Han, Ge; Lu, Xingen; Zhu, Junqiang

    2018-02-01

    Wedge diffuser is widely used in centrifugal compressors due to its high performance and compact size. This paper is aimed to research the influence of wedge diffuser blade number and divergence angle on centrifugal compressor performance. The impact of wedge diffuser blade number on compressor stage performance is investigated, and then the wedge diffusers with different divergence angle are studied by varying diffuser wedge angle and blade number simultaneously. It is found that wedge diffuser with 27 blades could have about 0.8% higher adiabatic efficiency and 0.14 higher total pressure ratio than the wedge diffuser with 19 blades and the best compressor performance is achieved when diffuser divergence angle is 8.3°.These results could give some advices on centrifugal compressor design.

  15. Characterization and modeling of 2D-glass micro-machining by spark-assisted chemical engraving (SACE) with constant velocity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Didar, Tohid Fatanat; Dolatabadi, Ali; Wüthrich, Rolf

    2008-01-01

    Spark-assisted chemical engraving (SACE) is an unconventional micro-machining technology based on electrochemical discharge used for micro-machining nonconductive materials. SACE 2D micro-machining with constant speed was used to machine micro-channels in glass. Parameters affecting the quality and geometry of the micro-channels machined by SACE technology with constant velocity were presented and the effect of each of the parameters was assessed. The effect of chemical etching on the geometry of micro-channels under different machining conditions has been studied, and a model is proposed for characterization of the micro-channels as a function of machining voltage and applied speed

  16. Enhanced dynamic wedge and independent monitor unit verification

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Howlett, SJ.

    2005-01-01

    Some serious radiation accidents have occurred around the world during the delivery of radiotherapy treatment. The regrettable incident in Panama clearly indicated the need for independent monitor unit (MU) verification. Indeed the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), after investigating the incident, made specific recommendations for radiotherapy centres which included an independent monitor unit check for all treatments. Independent monitor unit verification is practiced in many radiotherapy centres in developed countries around the world. It is mandatory in USA but not yet in Australia. This paper describes development of an independent MU program, concentrating on the implementation of the Enhanced Dynamic Wedge (EDW) component. The difficult case of non centre of field (COF) calculation points under the EDW was studied in some detail. Results of a survey of Australasian centres regarding the use of independent MU check systems is also presented. The system was developed with reference to MU calculations made by Pinnacle 3 D Radiotherapy Treatment Planning (RTP) system (ADAC - Philips) for 4MV, 6MV and 18MV X-ray beams used at the Newcastle Mater Misericordiae Hospital (NMMH) in the clinical environment. A small systematic error was detected in the equation used for the EDW calculations. Results indicate that COF equations may be used in the non COF situation with similar accuracy to that achieved with profile corrected methods. Further collaborative work with other centres is planned to extend these findings

  17. Canonical quantization of the Proca field in the Rindler wedge

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Castineiras, Jorge; Correa, Emerson Benedito Sousa; Crispino, Luis Carlos Bassalo; Matsas, George Emanuel Avraam

    2009-01-01

    Full text. We perform the canonical quantization of a massive vector field in Rindler spacetime. We pay special attention to the zero frequency modes of the Proca field because these are the modes that interact with structureless sources which are static in the Rindler spacetime. Our motivation is the computation of the total response of a static source with some fixed proper acceleration a 0 in Rindler spacetime interacting with the zero energy massive vector particle of the Fulling-Davies-Unruh (FDU) thermal bath and compare it with the response of a static source with the same proper acceleration a 0 outside a Schwarzschild black hole interacting with the massive vector particles of the Hawking thermal radiation. Surprisingly, as it was already shown in a resent article, these responses would be identical if a massless scalar field is consider instead of the massive vector field, the field outside the Schwarzschild black hole is supposed to be in the Unruh vacuum and the source proper acceleration is the same in both cases. This came as a surprise because structureless static sources can only interact with zero-frequency field modes. Such modes can probe the global geometry of spacetime and are accordingly quite different in Schwarzschild spacetime and in the Rindler wedge. (author)

  18. Measurement of dynamic wedge angles and beam profiles by means of MRI ferrous sulphate gel dosimetry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bengtsson, Magnus; Furre, Torbjørn; Rødal, Jan; Skretting, Arne; Olsen, Dag R.

    1996-02-01

    The purpose of this study is to examine the possible value of measuring the dose distribution in dynamic wedge photon beams using ferrous sulphate gel phantoms analysed by MRI. The wedge angles and dose profiles were measured for a field size of and for dynamic wedge angles of , , and using a 15 MV photon beam generated from a Clinac 2100 CD (Varian). The dose profiles obtained from MRI ferrous sulphate gel were in good agreement with the dose measurements performed with a diode detector array. Also, the wedge angles determined from the MRI ferrous sulphate gel agreed well with the values obtained by using film dosimetry and with calculations by use of TMS (treatment planning system) (Helax, Uppsala, Sweden). The study demonstrated that MRI ferrous sulphate gel dosimetry is an adequate tool for measurements of some beam characteristics of dynamic radiation fields.

  19. Reduced emissions of greenhouse gases 2050: Technological wedges - Input to the Commission on Low Emissions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rosenberg, Eva; Espegren, Kari Aamodt; Finden, Per; Hageman, Rolf; Stenersen, Dag

    2006-09-01

    The Commission on Low Emissions was established in March 2005 and has been charged with the task of describing how Norway can achieve a 50-80 percent reduction in emissions of greenhouse gases by 2050. The commission describes the desired total reduction in emissions to be a set of actions or 'wedges', meaning that the reduction in emissions are linked to an array of technological and behavioural changes. The technological wedges are described here, while the behavioural wedges are treated in a different report. The potentials described are based on the Low Emission's reference line. Possible changes in the reference line will result in changed potentials. The technological wedges studied comprise to a great extent a potential of 50-80 percent reduction in greenhouse gases by 2050. This depends on considerable effort from research and development, and a determination to change external conditions

  20. Development of Cone Wedge Ring Expansion Test to Evaluate Mechanical Properties of Clad Tubing Structure

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wang, Jy-An John [Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)

    2016-10-01

    To determine the hoop tensile properties of irradiated fuel cladding in a hot cell, a cone wedge ring expansion test method was developed. A four-piece wedge insert was designed with tapered angles matched to the cone shape of a loading piston. The ring specimen was expanded in the radial direction by the lateral expansion of the wedges under the downward movement of the piston. The advantages of the proposed method are that implementation of the test setup in a hot cell is simple and easy, and that it enables a direct strain measurement of the test specimen from the piston’s vertical displacement soon after the wedge-clad contact resistance is initiated.

  1. Diffraction of an inhomogeneous plane wave by an impedance wedge in a lossy medium

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Manara, G

    1998-11-01

    Full Text Available The diffraction of an inhomogeneous plane wave by an impedance wedge embedded in a lossy medium is analyzed. The rigorous integral representation for the field is asymptotically evaluated in the context of the uniform geometrical theory...

  2. Wedge and subselective pulmonary angiography in pulmonary hypertension secondary to venous obstruction

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bowen, J.S.; Bookstein, J.J.; Johnson, A.D.; Peterson, K.L.; Moser, K.M.

    1985-01-01

    Pulmonary wedge or subselective angiography provided key diagnostic information in two cases of pulmonary hypertension secondary to pulmonary venous obstruction. Whereas conventional pulmonary angiograms and ventilation-perfusion lung scans were interpreted as showing embolism, plain radiographs demonstrated Kerley B lines, suggesting venous obstruction. Subselective or wedge angiography of nonopacified arteries verified their anatomical patency and also revealed venous stenoses, collaterals, and atrophy indicative of obstruction

  3. The application of wedge type compensation filter for uniform density on the endoscopic retrograde pancreatography

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Son, Soon Yong; Lee, Hee Jeong; Lee, Won Hong; Cho, Cheong Chan; Ryu, Meung Sun; Jung, Hong Ryang

    2001-01-01

    Over-density of pancreatic duct tail part on the endoscopic retrograde pancreatogram results from patient's position and inserted air during the study. The aim of this paper is to decide the filter angle to obtain an uniform density. Endoscopic retrograde pancratography was performed to 234 patients, and angled wedge filter was used differently. They are 10 deg (47), 20 deg (45), 30 deg (50). We also did not use wedge filter to 42 patients. We decided reliance degree in 95%. The statistical difference was p<0.05. The patients' sex rate was 1.8:1 between 18 and 87 years old(average age 58 years). Their body girth was 18.71 cm on the average. Of total 234 patients, difference of right and left average density was 0.01 by 30 deg wedge filter, -0.08 40 deg wedge filter and 0.27 non-wedge filter. These average values of difference density were very significant statistically, and standard deviation also was close to regular distribution. In conclusion, there is a usefulness of angled wedge filter for increasing diagnostic value of pancreatic duct tail part on the endoscopic retrograde pancreatogram

  4. Porous Titanium Wedges in Lateral Column Lengthening for Adult-Acquired Flatfoot Deformity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Spencer H; Carstensen, S Evan; Burrus, M Tyrrell; Cooper, Truitt; Park, Joseph S; Perumal, Venkat

    2017-10-01

    Lateral column lengthening (LCL) is a common procedure for reconstruction of stage II flexible adult-acquired flatfoot deformity (AAFD). The recent development of porous titanium wedges for this procedure provides an alternative to allograft and autograft. The purpose of this study was to report radiographic and clinical outcomes achieved with porous titanium wedges in LCL. A retrospective analysis of 34 feet in 30 patients with AAFD that received porous titanium wedges for LCL from January 2011 to October 2014. Deformity correction was assessed using both radiographic and clinical parameters. Radiographic correction was assessed using the lateral talo-first metatarsal angle, the talonavicular uncoverage percentage, and the first metatarsocuneiform height. The hindfoot valgus angle was measured. Patients were followed from a minimum of 6 months up to 4 years (mean 16.1 months). Postoperative radiographs demonstrated significant correction in all 3 radiographic criteria and the hindfoot valgus angle. We had no cases of nonunion, no wedge migration, and no wedges have been removed to date. The most common complication was calcaneocuboid joint pain (14.7%). Porous titanium wedges in LCL can achieve good radiographic and clinical correction of AAFD with a low rate of nonunion and other complications. Level IV: Case series.

  5. On the practice of the clinical implementation of enhanced dynamic wedges

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Koken, Phil W.; Heukelom, Stan; Cuijpers, Johan P.

    2003-01-01

    Practical aspects of the clinical implementation of enhanced dynamic wedges (EDW) replacing manual wedges are presented and discussed extensively. A comparison between measured and calculated data is also presented. Relative dose distributions and wedge factors were calculated with a commercially available treatment planning system and measured in a water-phantom and with an ionization chamber. Wedge factor calculations and measurements were also compared with an independent method of wedge factor calculations available from the literature. Aspects of the clinical implementation, such as safety and quality assurance, were evaluated. Measurements and calculations agreed very well and were slightly better than results of previous studies. Profiles and percentage depth doses (PDDs) agreed within 1% to 1.5% and within 0.5%, respectively. Measured and calculated wedge factors ratios agreed within 0.5% to 1%. Calculated and measured EDW dose distributions showed excellent agreement, both relative and absolute. However, for safe and practical use, specific aspects need to be taken into consideration. Once the treatment planning system is commissioned properly, the clinical implementation of EDW is rather straightforward

  6. Evaluation method of lead measurement accuracy of gears using a wedge artefact

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Komori, Masaharu; Takeoka, Fumi; Kubo, Aizoh; Okamoto, Kazuhiko; Osawa, Sonko; Sato, Osamu; Takatsuji, Toshiyuki

    2009-01-01

    The reduction of the vibration and noise of gears is an important issue in mechanical devices such as vehicles and wind turbines. The characteristics of the vibration and noise of gears are markedly affected by deviations of the tooth flank form of micrometre order; therefore, a strict quality control of the tooth flank form is required. The accuracy of the lead measurement for a gear-measuring instrument is usually evaluated using a master gear or a lead master. However, it is difficult to manufacture masters with high accuracy because the helix is a complicated geometrical form. In this paper, we propose a method of evaluating a gear-measuring instrument using a wedge artefact, which includes a highly precise plane surface. The concept of the wedge artefact is described and a mathematical model of the measuring condition of the wedge artefact is constructed. Theoretical measurement results for the wedge artefact are calculated. The wedge artefact is designed and produced on the basis of the theoretical measurement results. A measurement experiment using the wedge artefact is carried out and its effectiveness is verified

  7. Cyclicity, episodicity, and continuity in accretionary wedge evolution: insights from geophysical imaging and physical analogue experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kukowski, N.

    2009-04-01

    Geophysical profiles across active convergent margins reveal different styles and locations of sediment accretion, thrust slices dipping successively steeper towards the hinterland, splay faults, and blind thrusts as well as accumulation spaces e. g. thrust top basins and larger basins formed by regional subsidence, of very variable size and position. Morphologically, the continental slope at most margins can be sub-divided in a lower, middle, and upper slope, with often the middle slope being the most shallowly inclined, suggesting segmented wedges. Beneath the forearc, a subduction channel of a few hundred meters to a few km thickness marks a layer of material transport into greater depth that also hosts the plate interface and décollement zone. The petrographical composition of accretionary wedges and subduction channels as well as related pressures and temperatures are accessible through deep drilling or sampling fossil accretionary complexes now exhumed. The structure, lithology, and tectonic history of forearcs as identified from geophysical and geology field observations hint to parameters possibly controlling material transfer at convergent margins. Among them, sediment supply, which itself is largely controlled by climate, width of the subduction channel, and interplate frictional properties, which also exhibit control on plate coupling and therefore the seismic potential of a forearc, are suggested to be of major importance. These parameters further may undergo temporal fluctuation, e.g. when climate changes or when different material is entering the trench and therefore potentially also the subduction channel. High resolution monitoring of material flux and the evolution of fault zone kinematics of analogue experimental wedges made of granular materials exhibiting frictional behaviour equivalent to that of upper crustal rocks shows that accretionary cycles proceed as a chain of sub-processes, i.e. the development of a thrust slice from initial failure

  8. Frontside-micromachined planar piezoresistive vibration sensor: Evaluating performance in the low frequency test range

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lan Zhang

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Using a surface piezoresistor diffusion method and front-side only micromachining process, a planar piezoresistive vibration sensor was successfully developed with a simple structure, lower processing cost and fewer packaging difficulties. The vibration sensor had a large sector proof mass attached to a narrow flexure. Optimization of the boron diffusion piezoresistor placed on the edge of the narrow flexure greatly improved the sensitivity. Planar vibration sensors were fabricated and measured in order to analyze the effects of the sensor dimensions on performance, including the values of flexure width and the included angle of the sector. Sensitivities of fabricated planar sensors of 0.09–0.46 mV/V/g were measured up to a test frequency of 60 Hz. The sensor functioned at low voltages (<3 V and currents (<1 mA with a high sensitivity and low drift. At low background noise levels, the sensor had performance comparable to a commercial device.

  9. Frontside-micromachined planar piezoresistive vibration sensor: Evaluating performance in the low frequency test range

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhang, Lan; Lu, Jian, E-mail: jian-lu@aist.go.jp; Takagi, Hideki; Maeda, Ryutaro [Research Center for Ubiquitous MEMS and Micro Engineering (UMEMSME), National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), Tsukuba, Ibaraki, 305-8564 (Japan)

    2014-01-15

    Using a surface piezoresistor diffusion method and front-side only micromachining process, a planar piezoresistive vibration sensor was successfully developed with a simple structure, lower processing cost and fewer packaging difficulties. The vibration sensor had a large sector proof mass attached to a narrow flexure. Optimization of the boron diffusion piezoresistor placed on the edge of the narrow flexure greatly improved the sensitivity. Planar vibration sensors were fabricated and measured in order to analyze the effects of the sensor dimensions on performance, including the values of flexure width and the included angle of the sector. Sensitivities of fabricated planar sensors of 0.09–0.46 mV/V/g were measured up to a test frequency of 60 Hz. The sensor functioned at low voltages (<3 V) and currents (<1 mA) with a high sensitivity and low drift. At low background noise levels, the sensor had performance comparable to a commercial device.

  10. A 16-bit sigma-delta modulator applied in micro-machined inertial sensors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Honglin, Xu; Qiang, Fu; Hongna, Liu; Liang, Yin; Pengfei, Wang; Xiaowei, Liu

    2014-04-01

    A fourth-order low-distortion low-pass sigma-delta (ΣΔ) modulator is presented for micro-machined inertial sensors. The proposed single-loop single-bit feedback modulator is optimized with a feed-forward path to decrease the nonlinearities and power consumption. The IC is implemented in a standard 0.6 μm CMOS technology and operates at a sampling frequency of 3.846 MHz. The chip area is 2.12 mm2 with 23 pads. The experimental results indicate a signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of 100 dB and dynamic range (DR) of 103 dB at an oversampling rate (OSR) of 128 with the input signal amplitude of -3.88 dBFS at 9.8 kHz; the power consumption is 15 mW at a 5 V supply.

  11. A 16-bit sigma–delta modulator applied in micro-machined inertial sensors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Xu Honglin; Fu Qiang; Liu Hongna; Yin Liang; Wang Pengfei; Liu Xiaowei

    2014-01-01

    A fourth-order low-distortion low-pass sigma–delta (ΣΔ) modulator is presented for micro-machined inertial sensors. The proposed single-loop single-bit feedback modulator is optimized with a feed-forward path to decrease the nonlinearities and power consumption. The IC is implemented in a standard 0.6 μm CMOS technology and operates at a sampling frequency of 3.846 MHz. The chip area is 2.12 mm 2 with 23 pads. The experimental results indicate a signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of 100 dB and dynamic range (DR) of 103 dB at an oversampling rate (OSR) of 128 with the input signal amplitude of −3.88 dBFS at 9.8 kHz; the power consumption is 15 mW at a 5 V supply. (semiconductor integrated circuits)

  12. High efficiency on-chip Dielectric Resonator Antennna using micromachining technology

    KAUST Repository

    Sallam, Mai O.; Serry, Mohamed; Shamim, Atif; De Raedt, Walter; Sedky, Sherif; Vandenbosch, Guy A. E.; Soliman, Ezzeldin A.

    2015-01-01

    In this paper, a novel cylindrical Dielectric Resonator Antenna (DRA) operating at 60 GHz is introduced. The antenna is fabricated using a high-resistivity silicon wafer. The DR is defined in the wafer using micromachining technology. The feeding network is located at the other side of the wafer. The proposed antenna is simulated using HFSS and the results are verified by measurements. The antenna radiation is mainly along the broadside direction. The measured gain, radiation efficiency, and bandwidth are 7 dBi, 74.65%, and 2.23 GHz respectively. The antenna is characterized by high polarization purity where the maximum cross-polarization is -15 dB. © 2015 IEEE.

  13. Double-section curvature tunable functional actuator with micromachined buckle and grid wire for electricity delivery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feng, Guo-Hua; Hou, Sheng-You

    2015-09-01

    This paper presents an ionic polymer metal composite (IPMC)-driven tentacle-like biocompatible flexible actuator with double-section curvature tunability. This actuator, possessing an embedded electrical transmission ability that mimics skeletal muscle nerves in the human body, affords versatile device functions. Novel micromachined copper buckles and grid wires are fabricated and their superiority in electricity delivery and driving the IPMC component with less flexural rigidity is demonstrated. In addition, soft conductive wires realized on a polydimethylsiloxane structure function as electrical signal transmitters. A light-emitting diode integrated with the developed actuator offers directional guiding light ability while the actuator performs a snake-like motion. The electrical conductivity and Young’s modulus of the key actuator components are investigated, and flexural rigidity and dynamic behavior analyses of the actuator under electrical manipulation are elaborated.

  14. Comparison of residual stress measurement in thin films using surface micromachining method

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    He, Q.; Luo, Z.X.; Chen, X.Y.

    2008-01-01

    Conductive, dielectric, semiconducting, piezoelectric and ferroelectric thin films are extensively used for MEMS/NEMS applications. One of the important parameters of thin films is residual stress. The residual stress can seriously affect the properties, performance and long-term stability of the films. Excessive compressive or tensile stress results in buckling, cracking, splintering and sticking problems. Stress measurement techniques are therefore essential for both process development and process monitoring. Many suggestions for stress measurement in thin films have been made over the past several decades. This paper is concentrated on the in situ stress measurement using surface micromachining techniques to determine the residual stress. The authors review and compare several types of stress measurement methods including buckling technique, rotating technique, micro strain gauge and long-short beam strain sensor

  15. Stability and spring constant investigation for micromachined inductive suspensions: theoretical analysis vs. experimental results

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Poletkin, K; Lu, Z; Wallrabe, U; Badilita, V; Den Hartogh, B

    2014-01-01

    We present a linear analytical model coupled with experimental analysis to discuss stability of a levitated proof mass (PM) in a micromachined inductive suspension (MIS), which has been previously introduced and characterized. The model is a function of the MIS geometry, describes the dynamics of a levitated disk-shaped PM near the equilibrium point, and predicts conditions for stable levitation. The experimental setup directly measures the lateral component of the Lorentz force, which has a stabilization role in the MIS structure, as well as the vertical levitation force. The experimental setup is further used to derive mechanical parameters such as stiffness values relative to lateral, vertical and angular displacements, proven to be in excellent agreement with the values predicted by the analytical model

  16. Micro-machinable polymer-derived ceramic sensors for high-temperature applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Jian; Xu, Chengying; An, Linan

    2010-04-01

    Micro-sensors are highly desired for on-line temperature/pressure monitoring in turbine engines to improve their efficiency and reduce pollution. The biggest challenge for developing this type of sensors is that the sensors have to sustain at extreme environments in turbine engine environments, such as high-temperatures (>800 °C), fluctuated pressure and oxidation/corrosion surroundings. In this paper, we describe a class of sensors made of polymer-derived ceramics (PDCs) for such applications. PDCs have the following advantages over conventional ceramics, making them particularly suitable for these applications: (i) micromachining capability, (ii) tunable electric properties, and (iii) hightemperature capability. Here, we will discuss the materials and their properties in terms of their applications for hightemperature micro-sensors, and microfabrication technologies. In addition, we will also discuss the design of a heat-flux sensor based on polymer-derived ceramics.

  17. High efficiency on-chip Dielectric Resonator Antennna using micromachining technology

    KAUST Repository

    Sallam, Mai O.

    2015-10-26

    In this paper, a novel cylindrical Dielectric Resonator Antenna (DRA) operating at 60 GHz is introduced. The antenna is fabricated using a high-resistivity silicon wafer. The DR is defined in the wafer using micromachining technology. The feeding network is located at the other side of the wafer. The proposed antenna is simulated using HFSS and the results are verified by measurements. The antenna radiation is mainly along the broadside direction. The measured gain, radiation efficiency, and bandwidth are 7 dBi, 74.65%, and 2.23 GHz respectively. The antenna is characterized by high polarization purity where the maximum cross-polarization is -15 dB. © 2015 IEEE.

  18. Multifrequency Excitation Method for Rapid and Accurate Dynamic Test of Micromachined Gyroscope Chips

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yan Deng

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available A novel multifrequency excitation (MFE method is proposed to realize rapid and accurate dynamic testing of micromachined gyroscope chips. Compared with the traditional sweep-frequency excitation (SFE method, the computational time for testing one chip under four modes at a 1-Hz frequency resolution and 600-Hz bandwidth was dramatically reduced from 10 min to 6 s. A multifrequency signal with an equal amplitude and initial linear-phase-difference distribution was generated to ensure test repeatability and accuracy. The current test system based on LabVIEW using the SFE method was modified to use the MFE method without any hardware changes. The experimental results verified that the MFE method can be an ideal solution for large-scale dynamic testing of gyroscope chips and gyroscopes.

  19. A Flexible Ultrasound Transducer Array with Micro-Machined Bulk PZT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhe Wang

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper proposes a novel flexible piezoelectric micro-machined ultrasound transducer, which is based on PZT and a polyimide substrate. The transducer is made on the polyimide substrate and packaged with medical polydimethylsiloxane. Instead of etching the PZT ceramic, this paper proposes a method of putting diced PZT blocks into holes on the polyimide which are pre-etched. The device works in d31 mode and the electromechanical coupling factor is 22.25%. Its flexibility, good conformal contacting with skin surfaces and proper resonant frequency make the device suitable for heart imaging. The flexible packaging ultrasound transducer also has a good waterproof performance after hundreds of ultrasonic electric tests in water. It is a promising ultrasound transducer and will be an effective supplementary ultrasound imaging method in the practical applications.

  20. A flexible ultrasound transducer array with micro-machined bulk PZT.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Zhe; Xue, Qing-Tang; Chen, Yuan-Quan; Shu, Yi; Tian, He; Yang, Yi; Xie, Dan; Luo, Jian-Wen; Ren, Tian-Ling

    2015-01-23

    This paper proposes a novel flexible piezoelectric micro-machined ultrasound transducer, which is based on PZT and a polyimide substrate. The transducer is made on the polyimide substrate and packaged with medical polydimethylsiloxane. Instead of etching the PZT ceramic, this paper proposes a method of putting diced PZT blocks into holes on the polyimide which are pre-etched. The device works in d31 mode and the electromechanical coupling factor is 22.25%. Its flexibility, good conformal contacting with skin surfaces and proper resonant frequency make the device suitable for heart imaging. The flexible packaging ultrasound transducer also has a good waterproof performance after hundreds of ultrasonic electric tests in water. It is a promising ultrasound transducer and will be an effective supplementary ultrasound imaging method in the practical applications.

  1. Micro-machined high-frequency (80 MHz) PZT thick film linear arrays.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Qifa; Wu, Dawei; Liu, Changgeng; Zhu, Benpeng; Djuth, Frank; Shung, K

    2010-10-01

    This paper presents the development of a micromachined high-frequency linear array using PZT piezoelectric thick films. The linear array has 32 elements with an element width of 24 μm and an element length of 4 mm. Array elements were fabricated by deep reactive ion etching of PZT thick films, which were prepared from spin-coating of PZT sol-gel composite. Detailed fabrication processes, especially PZT thick film etching conditions and a novel transferring-and-etching method, are presented and discussed. Array designs were evaluated by simulation. Experimental measurements show that the array had a center frequency of 80 MHz and a fractional bandwidth (-6 dB) of 60%. An insertion loss of -41 dB and adjacent element crosstalk of -21 dB were found at the center frequency.

  2. Double-section curvature tunable functional actuator with micromachined buckle and grid wire for electricity delivery

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Feng, Guo-Hua; Hou, Sheng-You

    2015-01-01

    This paper presents an ionic polymer metal composite (IPMC)-driven tentacle-like biocompatible flexible actuator with double-section curvature tunability. This actuator, possessing an embedded electrical transmission ability that mimics skeletal muscle nerves in the human body, affords versatile device functions. Novel micromachined copper buckles and grid wires are fabricated and their superiority in electricity delivery and driving the IPMC component with less flexural rigidity is demonstrated. In addition, soft conductive wires realized on a polydimethylsiloxane structure function as electrical signal transmitters. A light-emitting diode integrated with the developed actuator offers directional guiding light ability while the actuator performs a snake-like motion. The electrical conductivity and Young’s modulus of the key actuator components are investigated, and flexural rigidity and dynamic behavior analyses of the actuator under electrical manipulation are elaborated. (paper)

  3. Micromachined single-level nonplanar polycrystalline SiGe thermal microemitters for infrared dynamic scene projection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malyutenko, V. K.; Malyutenko, O. Yu.; Leonov, V.; Van Hoof, C.

    2009-05-01

    The technology for self-supported membraneless polycrystalline SiGe thermal microemitters, their design, and performance are presented. The 128-element arrays with a fill factor of 88% and a 2.5-μm-thick resonant cavity have been grown by low-pressure chemical vapor deposition and fabricated using surface micromachining technology. The 200-nm-thick 60×60 μm2 emitting pixels enforced with a U-shape profile pattern demonstrate a thermal time constant of 2-7 ms and an apparent temperature of 700 K in the 3-5 and 8-12 μm atmospheric transparency windows. The application of the devices to the infrared dynamic scene simulation and their benefit over conventional planar membrane-supported emitters are discussed.

  4. Bending-induced electromechanical coupling and large piezoelectric response in a micromachined diaphragm

    KAUST Repository

    Wang, Zhihong

    2013-11-04

    We investigated the dependence of electromechanical coupling and the piezoelectric response of a micromachined Pb(Zr 0.52 Ti 0.48)O 3 (PZT) diaphragm on its curvature by observing the impedance spectrum and central deflection responses to a small AC voltage. The curvature of the diaphragm was controlled by applying air pressure to its back. We found that a depolarized flat diaphragm does not initially exhibit electromechanical coupling or the piezoelectric response. However, upon the application of static air pressure to the diaphragm, both electromechanical coupling and the piezoelectric response can be induced in the originally depolarized diaphragm. The piezoelectric response increases as the curvature increases and a giant piezoelectric response can be obtained from a bent diaphragm. The obtained results clearly demonstrate that a high strain gradient in a diaphragm can polarize a PZT film through a flexoelectric effect, and that the induced piezoelectric response of the diaphragm can be controlled by adjusting its curvature.

  5. Modeling and Design of Capacitive Micromachined Ultrasonic Transducers Based-on Database Optimization

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chang, M W; Gwo, T J; Deng, T M; Chang, H C

    2006-01-01

    A Capacitive Micromachined Ultrasonic Transducers simulation database, based on electromechanical coupling theory, has been fully developed for versatile capacitive microtransducer design and analysis. Both arithmetic and graphic configurations are used to find optimal parameters based on serial coupling simulations. The key modeling parameters identified can improve microtransducer's character and reliability effectively. This method could be used to reduce design time and fabrication cost, eliminating trial-and-error procedures. Various microtransducers, with optimized characteristics, can be developed economically using the developed database. A simulation to design an ultrasonic microtransducer is completed as an executed example. The dependent relationship between membrane geometry, vibration displacement and output response is demonstrated. The electromechanical coupling effects, mechanical impedance and frequency response are also taken into consideration for optimal microstructures. The microdevice parameters with the best output signal response are predicted, and microfabrication processing constraints and realities are also taken into consideration

  6. Corporate array of micromachined dipoles on silicon wafer for 60 GHz communication systems

    KAUST Repository

    Sallam, M. O.

    2013-03-01

    In this paper, an antenna array operating at 60 GHz and realized on 0.675 mm thick silicon substrate is presented. The array is constructed using four micromachined half-wavelength dipoles fed by a corporate feeding network. Isolation between the antenna array and its feeding network is achieved via a ground plane. This arrangement leads to maximizing the broadside radiation with relatively high front-to-back ratio. Simulations have been carried out using both HFSS and CST, which showed very good agreement. Results reveal that the proposed antenna array has good radiation characteristics, where the directivity, gain, and radiation efficiency are around 10.5 dBi, 9.5 dBi, and 79%, respectively. © 2013 IEEE.

  7. Monolithic integration of micromachined sensors and CMOS circuits based on SOI technologies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yu Xiaomei; Tang Yaquan; Zhang Haitao

    2008-01-01

    This note presents a novel way to monolithically integrate micro-cantilever sensors and signal conditioning circuits by combining SOI CMOS and SOI micromachining technologies. In order to improve the sensor performance and reduce the system volume, an integrated sensor system composed of a piezoresistive cantilever array, a temperature-compensation current reference, a digitally controlled multiplexer and an instrument amplifier is designed and finally fabricated. A post-SOI CMOS process is developed to realize the integrated sensor system which is based on a standard CMOS process with one more mask to define the cantilever structure at the end of the process. Measurements on the finished SOI CMOS devices and circuits show that the integration process has good compatibility both for the cantilever sensors and for the CMOS circuits, and the SOI CMOS integration process can decrease about 25% sequences compared with the bulk silicon CMOS process. (note)

  8. Improving the Design of Capacitive Micromachined Ultrasonic Transducers Aided with Sensitivity Analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A Martowicz

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The paper presents the results of analysis performed to search for feasible design improvements for capacitive micromachined ultrasonic transducer. Carried out search has been aided with the sensitivity analysis and the application of Response Surface Method. The multiphysics approach has been taken into account in elaborated finite element model of one cell of described transducer in order to include significant physical phenomena present in modelled microdevice. The set of twelve input uncertain and design parameters consists of geometric, material and control properties. The amplitude of dynamic membrane deformation of the transducer has been chosen as studied parameter. The objective of performed study has been defined as the task of finding robust design configurations of the transducer, i.e. characterizing maximal value of deformation amplitude with its minimal variation.

  9. Micromachined On-Chip Dielectric Resonator Antenna Operating at 60 GHz

    KAUST Repository

    Sallam, Mai

    2015-06-01

    This paper presents a novel cylindrical Dielectric Resonator Antenna (DRA) suitable for millimeter-wave on-chip systems. The antenna was fabricated from a single high resistivity silicon wafer via micromachining technology. The new antenna was characterized using HFSS and experimentally with good agreement been found between the simulations and experiment. The proposed DRA has good radiation characteristics, where its gain and radiation efficiency are 7 dBi and 79.35%, respectively. These properties are reasonably constant over the working frequency bandwidth of the antenna. The return loss bandwidth was 2.23 GHz, which corresponds to 3.78% around 60 GHz. The antenna was primarily a broadside radiator with -15 dB cross polarization level.

  10. Micromachining. CERN Courier, Jul-Aug 1995, v. 35(5)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wilson, Martin

    1995-01-01

    Full text: As well as making microcircuit components, X-ray lithography can also be used to make very small mechanical parts, either by using directly the exposed and developed photoresist, or as a mould to produce the component in another material such as ceramic or metal. In this revolutionary technology, metal components are made via the LIGA (Lithographic Galvanoformung und Abformung) technique in which the exposed and developed photoresist is coated with a conducting material and then electroplated, after which the resist is stripped away. In addition to fine size and precision resolution, X-rays offer the advantage of deep penetration and small scattering through the resist, so that patterns may be up to a millimetre deep, with very accurate straightness in directions parallel to the beam. Micromachining via LIGA was developed at KfK Karlsruhe; commercialization and further development is being vigorously pursued by the Institut fur Mikrotechnik in Mainz and by Microparts GmbH in Karlsruhe. Significant developments have been made at the Synchrotron Radiation Centre in Madison, Wisconsin, with new programmes start-ing at SRRC (Taiwan), CAMD (Baton Rouge, Louisiana), and LURE (Paris). There is now an active European Special Interest Group for LIGA. Commercially manufactured micromachines are starting to be used in sensors and connectors. The ability to integrate microdevices with microelectronics raises many interesting possibilities for the future, notably in medicine and for intelligent sensors. In all cases, however, widespread adoption will be governed by the ability to mass-produce cheaply, requiring high volume production. The high intensities of synchrotron radiation will assist in achieving these large throughputs

  11. High-intensity fibre laser design for micro-machining applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortiz-Neria, D. I.; Martinez-Piñón, F.; Hernandez-Escamilla, H.; Alvarez-Chavez, J. A.

    2010-11-01

    This work is focused on the design of a 250W high-intensity continuous-wave fibre optic laser with a 15μm spot size beam and a beam parameter product (BPP) of 1.8 for its use on Laser-assisted Cold Spray process (LCS) in the micro-machining areas. The metal-powder deposition process LCS, is a novel method based on Cold Spray technique (CS) assisted by laser technology. The LCS accelerates metal powders by the use of a high-pressure gas in order to achieve flash welding of particles over substrate. In LCS, the critical velocity of impact is lower with respect with CS while the powder particle is heated before the deposition by a laser beam. Furthermore, LCS does not heat the powder to achieve high temperatures as it happens in plasma processes. This property puts aside cooling problems which normally happen in sintered processes with high oxygen/nitrogen concentration levels. LCS will be used not only in deposition of thin layers. After careful design, proof of concept, experimental data, and prototype development, it should be feasible to perform micro-machining precise work with the use of the highintensity fibre laser presented in this work, and selective deposition of particles, in a similar way to the well-known Direct Metal Laser Sintering process (DMLS). The fibre laser consists on a large-mode area, Yb3+-doped, semi-diffraction limited, 25-m fibre laser cavity, operating in continuous wave regime. The fibre shows an arguably high slope-efficiency with no signs of roll-over. The measured M2 value is 1.8 and doping concentration of 15000ppm. It was made with a slight modification of the traditional MCVD technique. A full optical characterization will be presented.

  12. Minimizing stress in large-area surface micromachined perforated membranes with slits

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ghaderi, M; Ayerden, N P; De Graaf, G; Wolffenbuttel, R F

    2015-01-01

    This paper presents the effectiveness of both design and fabrication techniques for avoiding the rupturing or excessive bending of perforated membranes after release in surface micromachining. Special lateral designs of arrays of slits in the membrane were investigated for a maximum yield at a given level of residual stress. Process parameters were investigated and optimized for minimum residual stress in multilayer thin-film membranes. A 2 µm thick sacrificial TEOS layer and a structural membrane that is composed of silicon nitride and polysilicon layers in the stack is the basis of this study. The effect of sharp corners on the local stress in membranes was investigated, and structures are proposed that reduce these effects, maximizing the yield at a given level of residual stress. The effects of perforation and slits were studied both theoretically and using finite element analysis. While the overall effect of perforation is negligible in typical MEMS structures, an optimum design for the slits reduces the von Mises stress considerably as compared to sharp corners. The fabrication process was also investigated and optimized for the minimum residual stress of both the layers within the stack and the complete layer stack. The main emphasis of this work is on placing a stress-compensating layer on the wafer backside and simultaneously removing it during the surface micromachining, as this has been found to be the most effective method to reduce the overall stress in a stack of layers after sacrificial etching. Implementation of a stress compensating layer reduced the total residual stress from 200 MPa compressive into almost 60 MPa, tensile. Even though a particular structure was studied here, the employed methods are expected to be applicable to similar MEMS design problems. (paper)

  13. Benzocyclobutene-based electric micromachines supported on microball bearings: Design, fabrication, and characterization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Modafe, Alireza

    This dissertation summarizes the research activities that led to the development of the first microball-bearing-supported linear electrostatic micromotor with benzocyclobutene (BCB) low-k polymer insulating layers. The primary application of this device is long-range, high-speed linear micropositioning. The future generations of this device include rotary electrostatic micromotors and microgenerators. The development of the first generation of microball-bearing-supported micromachines, including device theory, design, and modeling, material characterization, process development, device fabrication, and device test and characterization is presented. The first generation of these devices is based on a 6-phase, bottom-drive, linear, variable-capacitance micromotor (B-LVCM). The design of the electrical and mechanical components of the micromotor, lumped-circuit modeling of the device and electromechanical characteristics, including variable capacitance, force, power, and speed are presented. Electrical characterization of BCB polymers, characterization of BCB chemical mechanical planarization (CMP), development of embedded BCB in silicon (EBiS) process, and integration of device components using microfabrication techniques are also presented. The micromotor consists of a silicon stator, a silicon slider, and four stainless-steel microballs. The aligning force profile of the micromotor was extracted from simulated and measured capacitances of all phases. An average total aligning force of 0.27 mN with a maximum of 0.41 mN, assuming a 100 V peak-to-peak square-wave voltage, was measured. The operation of the micromotor was verified by applying square-wave voltages and characterizing the slider motion. An average slider speed of 7.32 mm/s when excited by a 40 Hz, 120 V square-wave voltage was reached without losing the synchronization. This research has a pivotal impact in the field of power microelectromechanical systems (MEMS). It establishes the foundation for the

  14. Unveiling the wet chemical etching characteristics of polydimethylsiloxane film for soft micromachining applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kakati, A; Maji, D; Das, S

    2017-01-01

    Micromachining of a polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) microstructure by wet chemical etching is explored for microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) and microfluidic applications. A 100 µ m thick PDMS film was patterned with different microstructure designs by wet chemical etching using a N-methyl-2-pyrrolidone (C 16 H 36 FN) and tetra-n-butylammonium fluoride (C 5 H 9 NO) mixture solution with 3:1 volume ratio after lithography for studying etching characteristics. The patterning parameters, such as etch rate, surface roughness, pH of etchant solution with time, were thoroughly investigated. A detailed study of surface morphology with etching time revealed nonlinear behaviour of the PDMS surface roughness and etch rate. A maximum rate of 1.45 µ m min −1 for 10 min etching with surface roughness of 360 nm was achieved. A new approach of wet chemical etching with pH controlled doped etchant was introduced for lower surface roughness of etched microstructures, and a constant etch rate during etching. Variation of the etching rate and surface roughness by pH controlled etching was performed by doping 5–15 gm l −1 of silicic acid (SiO 2xH2 O) into the traditional etchant solution. PDMS etching by silicic acid doped etchant solution showed a reduction in surface roughness from 400 nm to 220 nm for the same 15 µ m etching. This study is beneficial for micromachining of various MEMS and microfluidic structures such as micropillars, microchannels, and other PDMS microstructures. (paper)

  15. Three-dimensional vertebral wedging in mild and moderate adolescent idiopathic scoliosis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sophie-Anne Scherrer

    Full Text Available Vertebral wedging is associated with spinal deformity progression in adolescent idiopathic scoliosis. Reporting frontal and sagittal wedging separately could be misleading since these are projected values of a single three-dimensional deformation of the vertebral body. The objectives of this study were to determine if three-dimensional vertebral body wedging is present in mild scoliosis and if there are a preferential vertebral level, position and plane of deformation with increasing scoliotic severity.Twenty-seven adolescent idiopathic scoliotic girls with mild to moderate Cobb angles (10° to 50° participated in this study. All subjects had at least one set of bi-planar radiographs taken with the EOS® X-ray imaging system prior to any treatment. Subjects were divided into two groups, separating the mild (under 20° from the moderate (20° and over spinal scoliotic deformities. Wedging was calculated in three different geometric planes with respect to the smallest edge of the vertebral body.Factorial analyses of variance revealed a main effect for the scoliosis severity but no main effect of vertebral Levels (apex and each of the three vertebrae above and below it (F = 1.78, p = 0.101. Main effects of vertebral Positions (apex and above or below it (F = 4.20, p = 0.015 and wedging Planes (F = 34.36, p<0.001 were also noted. Post-hoc analysis demonstrated a greater wedging in the inferior group of vertebrae (3.6° than the superior group (2.9°, p = 0.019 and a significantly greater wedging (p≤0.03 along the sagittal plane (4.3°.Vertebral wedging was present in mild scoliosis and increased as the scoliosis progressed. The greater wedging of the inferior group of vertebrae could be important in estimating the most distal vertebral segment to be restrained by bracing or to be fused in surgery. Largest vertebral body wedging values obtained in the sagittal plane support the claim that scoliosis could be initiated

  16. A possible mechanism for earthquakes found in the mantle wedge of the Nazca subduction zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warren, L. M.; Chang, Y.; Prieto, G. A.

    2017-12-01

    Beneath Colombia, the Cauca cluster of intermediate-depth earthquakes extends for 200 km along the trench (3.5°N-5.5°N, 77.0°W-75.3°W) and, with 58 earthquakes per year with local magnitude ML >= 2.5, has a higher rate of seismicity than the subduction zone immediately to the north or south. By precisely locating 433 cluster earthquakes from 1/2010-3/2014 with data from the Colombian National Seismic Network, we found that the earthquakes are located both in a continuous Nazca plate subducting at an angle of 33°-43° and in the overlying mantle wedge. The mantle wedge earthquakes (12% of the earthquakes) form two isolated 40-km-tall columns extending perpendicular to the subducting slab. Using waveform inversion, we computed focal mechanisms for 69 of the larger earthquakes. The focal mechanisms are variable, but the intraslab earthquakes are generally consistent with an in-slab extensional stress axis oriented 25° counterclockwise from the down-dip direction. We suggest that the observed mantle wedge earthquakes are the result of hydrofracture in a relatively cool mantle wedge. This segment of the Nazca Plate is currently subducting at a normal angle, but Wagner et al. (2017) suggested that a flat slab slowly developed in the region between 9-5.9 Ma and persisted until 4 Ma. During flat slab subduction, the overlying mantle wedge typically cools because it is cut off from mantle corner flow. After hydrous minerals in the slab dehydrate, the dehydrated fluid is expelled from the slab and migrates through the mantle wedge. If a cool mantle wedge remains today, fluid dehydrated from the slab may generate earthquakes by hydrofracture, with the mantle wedge earthquakes representing fluid migration pathways. Dahm's (2000) model of water-filled fracture propagation in the mantle wedge shows hydrofractures propagating normal to the subducting slab and extending tens of km into the mantle wedge, as we observe.

  17. Chemical risk factors responsible for the formation of wedge-shaped lesions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Perić Dejan

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Non-carious tooth substances loss pose a major health problem of a modern man. The literature often collectively describes all non-carious lesions and is therefore difficult to compare results obtained by different authors. Chemical factors are one of the predisposing factors responsible for the formation of wedge-shaped erosions. Aim: Examination of chemical risk factors as one of the predisposing causes responsible for the formation of wedge-shaped lesions. Method: We examined 62 patients with wedge-shaped erosions (mean age 45.52 ± 12.03 years, 58.1% of men and 60 patients without erosions in the control group (mean age 34.40 ± 9.28 years, 60% men . The entire examination was completed by using a questionnaire at the Dental Clinic of the University of Pristina - Kosovska Mitrovica. salivary pH was measured by the pH meter. Results: The results show that the wedge-shaped lesions often occur equally in both men and women. Considerably often it might appear in older people but can also occur in teenagers. Patients with wedge-shaped erosion have increased acidity of saliva, a heightened sense of acid in the mouth and consume a lot more carbonated drinks compared to patients without erosions. Conclusion: Wedge-shaped lesions are more common in people older than 40 years. Taking into account the results obtained in this study it can be concluded that the chemical risk factors truly fall within the predisposing factors that may be responsible for the creation of wedge-shaped erosions.

  18. Rainfall induced groundwater mound in wedge-shaped promontories: The Strack-Chernyshov model revisited

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kacimov, A. R.; Kayumov, I. R.; Al-Maktoumi, A.

    2016-11-01

    An analytical solution to the Poisson equation governing Strack's discharge potential (squared thickness of a saturated zone in an unconfined aquifer) is obtained in a wedge-shaped domain with given head boundary conditions on the wedge sides (specified water level in an open water body around a porous promontory). The discharge vector components, maximum elevation of the water table in promontory vertical cross-sections, quantity of groundwater seeping through segments of the wedge sides, the volume of fresh groundwater in the mound are found. For acute angles, the solution to the problem is non-unique and specification of the behaviour at infinity is needed. A ;basic; solution is distinguished, which minimizes the water table height above a horizontal bedrock. MODFLOW simulations are carried out in a finite triangular island and compare solutions with a constant-head, no-flow and ;basic; boundary condition on one side of the triangle. Far from the tip of an infinite-size promontory one has to be cautious with truncation of the simulated flow domains and imposing corresponding boundary conditions. For a right and obtuse wedge angles, there are no positive solutions for the case of constant accretion on the water table. In a particular case of a confined rigid wedge-shaped aquifer and incompressible fluid, from an explicit solution to the Laplace equation for the hydraulic head with arbitrary time-space varying boundary conditions along the promontory rays, essentially 2-D transient Darcian flows within the wedge are computed. They illustrate that surface water waves on the promontory boundaries can generate strong Darcian waves inside the porous wedge. Evaporation from the water table and sea-water intruded interface (rather than a horizontal bed) are straightforward generalizations for the Poissonian Strack potential.

  19. Assessment of Neutron Contamination Originating from the Presence of Wedge and Block in Photon Beam Radiotherapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bahreyni Toossi, M T; Khajetash, B; Ghorbani, M

    2018-03-01

    One of the main causes of induction of secondary cancer in radiation therapy is neutron contamination received by patients during treatment. Objective: In the present study the impact of wedge and block on neutron contamination production is investigated. The evaluations are conducted for a 15 MV Siemens Primus linear accelerator. Simulations were performed using MCNPX Monte Carlo code. 30˚, 45˚ and 60˚ wedges and a cerrobend block with dimensions of 1.5 × 1.5 × 7 cm 3 were simulated. The investigation were performed in the 10 × 10 cm 2 field size at source to surface distance of 100 cm for depth of 0.5, 2, 3 and 4 cm in a water phantom. Neutron dose was calculated using F4 tally with flux to dose conversion factors and F6 tally. Results showed that the presence of wedge increases the neutron contamination when the wedge factor was considered. In addition, 45˚ wedge produced the most amount of neutron contamination. If the block is in the center of the field, the cerrobend block caused less neutron contamination than the open field due to absorption of neutrons and photon attenuation. The results showed that neutron contamination is less in steeper depths. The results for two tallies showed practically equivalent results. Wedge causes neutron contamination hence should be considered in therapeutic protocols in which wedge is used. In terms of clinical aspects, the results of this study show that superficial tissues such as skin will tolerate more neutron contamination than the deep tissues.

  20. Measured Hydrologic Storage Characteristics of Three Major Ice Wedge Polygon Types, Barrow, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chamberlain, A. J.; Liljedahl, A.; Wilson, C. J.; Cable, W.; Romanovsky, V. E.

    2014-12-01

    Model simulations have suggested that the hydrologic fluxes and stores of Arctic wetlands are constrained by the micro-topographical features of ice wedge polygons, which are abundant in lowland tundra landscapes. Recently observed changes in ice wedge polygon landscapes - in particular, ice wedge degradation and trough formation - emphasize the need to better understand how differing ice wedge polygon morphologies affect the larger hydrologic system. Here we present three seasons of measured end-of-winter snow accumulation, continuous soil moisture and water table elevations, and repeated frost table mapping. Together, these describe the hydrologic characteristics of three main ice wedge polygon types: low centered polygons with limited trough development (representative of a ~500 year old vegetated drained thaw lake basin), and low- and high-centered polygons with well-defined troughs. Dramatic spatiotemporal variability exists both between polygon types and between the features of an individual polygon (e.g. troughs, centers, rims). Landscape-scale end-of-winter snow water equivalent is similar between polygon types, while the sub-polygon scale distribution of the surface water differs, both as snow and as ponded water. Some sub-polygon features appear buffered against large variations in water levels, while others display periods of prolonged recessions and large responses to rain events. Frost table elevations in general mimic the ground surface topography, but with spatiotemporal variability in thaw rate. The studied thaw seasons represented above long-term average rainfall, and in 2014, record high June precipitation. Differing ice wedge polygon types express dramatically different local hydrology, despite nearly identical climate forcing and landscape-scale snow accumulation, making ice wedge polygons an important component when describing the Arctic water, nutrient and energy system.

  1. Climate adaptation wedges: a case study of premium wine in the western United States

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Diffenbaugh, Noah S; Ashfaq, Moetasim; White, Michael A; Jones, Gregory V

    2011-01-01

    Design and implementation of effective climate change adaptation activities requires quantitative assessment of the impacts that are likely to occur without adaptation, as well as the fraction of impact that can be avoided through each activity. Here we present a quantitative framework inspired by the greenhouse gas stabilization wedges of Pacala and Socolow. In our proposed framework, the damage avoided by each adaptation activity creates an 'adaptation wedge' relative to the loss that would occur without that adaptation activity. We use premium winegrape suitability in the western United States as an illustrative case study, focusing on the near-term period that covers the years 2000-39. We find that the projected warming over this period results in the loss of suitable winegrape area throughout much of California, including most counties in the high-value North Coast and Central Coast regions. However, in quantifying adaptation wedges for individual high-value counties, we find that a large adaptation wedge can be captured by increasing the severe heat tolerance, including elimination of the 50% loss projected by the end of the 2030-9 period in the North Coast region, and reduction of the projected loss in the Central Coast region from 30% to less than 15%. Increased severe heat tolerance can capture an even larger adaptation wedge in the Pacific Northwest, including conversion of a projected loss of more than 30% in the Columbia Valley region of Washington to a projected gain of more than 150%. We also find that warming projected over the near-term decades has the potential to alter the quality of winegrapes produced in the western US, and we discuss potential actions that could create adaptation wedges given these potential changes in quality. While the present effort represents an initial exploration of one aspect of one industry, the climate adaptation wedge framework could be used to quantitatively evaluate the opportunities and limits of climate adaptation

  2. Laser-based linear and nonlinear guided elastic waves at surfaces (2D) and wedges (1D).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hess, Peter; Lomonosov, Alexey M; Mayer, Andreas P

    2014-01-01

    The characteristic features and applications of linear and nonlinear guided elastic waves propagating along surfaces (2D) and wedges (1D) are discussed. Laser-based excitation, detection, or contact-free analysis of these guided waves with pump-probe methods are reviewed. Determination of material parameters by broadband surface acoustic waves (SAWs) and other applications in nondestructive evaluation (NDE) are considered. The realization of nonlinear SAWs in the form of solitary waves and as shock waves, used for the determination of the fracture strength, is described. The unique properties of dispersion-free wedge waves (WWs) propagating along homogeneous wedges and of dispersive wedge waves observed in the presence of wedge modifications such as tip truncation or coatings are outlined. Theoretical and experimental results on nonlinear wedge waves in isotropic and anisotropic solids are presented. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. A complex social intervention for multidisciplinary teams to improve patient referrals in bosttrical care: desing of a stepped wedge study.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Romijn, A.; Bruijne, M.C. de; Teunissen, P.W.; Groot, C.J.M. de; Wagner, C.

    2016-01-01

    Introduction: In obstetrics, patients often experience referral situations between different care professionals. In these multidisciplinary teams, a focus on communication and interprofessional collaboration is needed to ensure care of high quality. Crew resource management team training is

  4. A stepped-wedge evaluation of an initiative to spread the collaborative care model for depression in primary care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Solberg, Leif I; Crain, A Lauren; Maciosek, Michael V; Unützer, Jürgen; Ohnsorg, Kris A; Beck, Arne; Rubenstein, Lisa; Whitebird, Robin R; Rossom, Rebecca C; Pietruszewski, Pamela B; Crabtree, Benjamin F; Joslyn, Kenneth; Van de Ven, Andrew; Glasgow, Russell E

    2015-09-01

    Scale-up and spread of evidence-based practices is one of the most important challenges facing health care. We tested whether a statewide initiative, Depression Improvement Across Minnesota-Offering a New Direction (DIAMOND), to implement the collaborative care model for depression in 75 primary care clinics resulted in patient outcome improvements corresponding to those reported in randomized controlled trials. Health plans provided a new monthly payment to participating clinics after a 6-month intensive training program with ongoing data submission, networking, and consultation. Implementation was staggered, with 5 sequences of 10 to 40 clinics every 6 months. Payers provided weekly contact information for members from participating clinics who were filling antidepressant prescriptions, and we conducted baseline and 6-month surveys of 1,578 patients about their care and outcomes. There were 466 patients in DIAMOND clinics who received usual care before implementation (UCB), 559 who received usual care in DIAMOND clinics after implementation (UCA), 245 who received DIAMOND care after implementation (DCA), and 308 who received usual care in comparison clinics (UC). Patients who received DIAMOND care after implementation reported more collaborative care depression services than the 3 comparison groups (10.9 vs 6.4-6.7, on a scale of 0 of 14, where higher numbers indicate more services; P <.001) and more satisfaction with their care (4.0 vs 3.4 on a scale 1 to 5, in which higher scores indicate higher satisfaction; P ≤.001). Depression remission rates, however, were not significantly different among the 4 groups (36.4% DCA vs 35.8% UCB, 35.0% UCA, 33.9% UC; P = .94). Despite the incentive of a supporting payment change and intensive training and support for clinics volunteering to participate, no difference in depression outcomes was documented. Specific unmeasured actions present in trials but not present in these clinics may be critical for successful outcome improvement. © 2015 Annals of Family Medicine, Inc.

  5. A geographical cluster randomised stepped wedge study of continuing medical education and cancer diagnosis in general practice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Toftegaard, Berit; Bro, Flemming; Vedsted, Peter

    2014-01-01

    Alment praktiserende læger spiller en nøglerolle for tidlig diagnostik af kræft. Denne artikel beskriver en intervention i form af efteruddannelse af alment praktiserende læger i tidlig diagnostik af kræft. Artiklen beskriver identifikation af barrierer i almen praksis for tidlig diagnostik af...

  6. Enhanced dynamic wedge and independent monitor unit verification

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Howlett, S.J.; University of Newcastle, NSW

    2004-01-01

    Full text: Some serious radiation accidents have occurred around the world during the delivery of radiotherapy treatment. The regrettable incident in Panama clearly indicated the need for independent monitor unit (MU) verification. Indeed the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), after investigating the incident, made specific recommendations for radiotherapy centres which included an independent monitor unit check for all treatments. Independent monitor unit verification is practiced in many radiotherapy centres in developed countries around the world. It is mandatory in USA but not yet in Australia. The enhanced dynamic wedge factor (EDWF) presents some significant problems in accurate MU calculation, particularly in the case of non centre of field position (COF). This paper describes development of an independent MU program, concentrating on the implementation of the EDW component. The difficult case of non COF points under the EDW was studied in detail. A survey of Australasian centres regarding the use of independent MU check systems was conducted. The MUCalculator was developed with reference to MU calculations made by Pinnacle 3D RTP system (Philips) for 4MV, 6MV and 18MV X-ray beams from Varian machines used at the Newcastle Mater Misericordiae Hospital (NMMH) in the clinical environment. Ionisation chamber measurements in solid water TM and liquid water were performed based on a published test data set. Published algorithms combined with a depth dependent profile correction were applied in an attempt to match measured data with maximum accuracy. The survey results are presented. Substantial data is presented in tabular form and extensive comparison with published data. Several different methods for calculating EDWF are examined. A small systematic error was detected in the Gibbon equation used for the EDW calculations. Generally, calculations were within +2% of measured values, although some setups exceeded this variation. Results indicate that COF

  7. Distribution of lithium in the Cordilleran Mantle wedge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shervais, J. W.; Jean, M. M.; Seitz, H. M.

    2015-12-01

    Enriched fluid-mobile element (i.e., B, Li, Be) concentrations in peridotites from the Coast Range ophiolite are compelling evidence that this ophiolite originated in a subduction environment. A new method presented in Shervais and Jean (2012) for modeling the fluid enrichment process, represents the total addition of material to the mantle wedge source region and can be applied to any refractory mantle peridotite that has been modified by melt extraction and/or metasomatism. Although the end-result is attributed to an added flux of aqueous fluid or fluid-rich melt phase derived from the subducting slab, in the range of tens of parts per million - the nature and composition of this fluid could not be constrained. To address fluid(s) origins, we have analyzed Li isotopes in bulk rock peridotite and eclogite, and garnet separates, to identify possible sources, and fluid flow mechanisms and pathways. Bulk rock Li abundances of CRO peridotites (δ7Li = -14.3 to 5.5‰; 1.9-7.5 ppm) are indicative of Li addition and δ7Li-values are lighter than normal upper mantle values. However, Li abundances of clino- and orthopyroxene appear to record different processes operating during the CRO-mantle evolution. Low Li abundances in orthopyroxene (2 ppm) record subsequent interaction with Li-enriched fluids (or melts). The preferential partitioning of lithium in clinopyroxene could be indicative of a particular metasomatic agent, e.g., fluids from a dehydrating slab. Future in-situ peridotite isotope studies via laser ablation will further elucidate the fractionation of lithium between orthopyroxene, clinopyroxene, and serpentine. To obtain a more complete picture of the slab to arc transfer processes, we also measured eclogites and garnet separates to δ7Li= -18 to 3.5‰ (11.5-32.5 ppm) and δ7Li= 1.9 to 11.7‰ (0.7-3.9 ppm), respectively. In connection with previous studies focused on high-grade metamorphic assemblages within the Franciscan complex, an overall framework exists

  8. Achievement report on commissioned research of R and D in fiscal 1999 on micro-machine technologies. R and D of micro-machine technologies; 1999 nendo kenkyu seika hokokusho. Maikuro mashin gijutsu no kenkyu kaihatsu

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2001-03-01

    With an objective to perform diagnoses and medical treatment in space limited portions in living organisms, research on micro-machine systems, research on a scanning type photographing unit in the medical micro-machine, and comprehensive surveys and researches have been conducted. This paper summarizes the achievements in fiscal 1999. In the research of a micro laser catheter, a prototype laser head having an outer diameter of 1 mm was fabricated, whereas composition was realized with a micro catheter having an outer diameter of 1.5 mm. With regard to the micro pressure sensor for catheterization, good active curving action was realized by a catheter in which a pressure sensor is mounted in the SMA curved catheter head. Research on the scanning type photographing unit has been carried out, for reducing further the diameter and size of an endoscope, on a photographing unit using laser beam whose cross section area of the tip optical section is about half of the conventional units. As a result, a high resolution scanning type photographing unit was realized based on the fiber optic system using a scanning mirror. In the comprehensive surveys and researches, items of information were collected in relation with the basic technologies for micro-machines. (NEDO)

  9. FY 1994 Report on the technical results. Research and development of micromachine technologies (Development of highly functional maintenance technologies for power plants); 1994 nendo micromachine gijutsu no kenkyu kaihatsu seika hokokusho. Hatsuden shisetsuyo kokino maintenance gijutsu kaihatsu

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1995-09-01

    This research and development project is aimed at development of the technologies for the micromachines provided with maintenance functions, e.g., for examination and maintenance of abnormal conditions in heat exchangers, piping systems or the like. The initial target is set at establishment of basic technologies for the micromachines, in consideration of the available technologies. The R and D activities are directed to (1) microcapsules for, e.g., micro power generators, (2) mother machines having controlling and instructing functions, (3) non-cabled examination modules, (4) cabled examination modules, and (5) total systems. The item (1) involves the micro power generators, and mechanisms of signal transmission, flaw finding and driving/suspension; the item (2) mechanisms of micro-optics and connection, group controlling, microbatteries, action type controlling, and artificial muscles; the item (3) expansion/contraction type transfer mechanisms, light energy supply, micro visual sensation, function connection, and concerted controlling; the item (4) tubular manipulators, and mechanisms of light-aided power generation and voltage elevation; and the item (5) maintenance and micromachine systems. (NEDO)

  10. Assessment of an amorphous silicon EPID for quality assurance of enhanced dynamic wedge

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Greer, P.

    2004-01-01

    Full text: Routine quality assurance (QA) of enhanced dynamic wedge (EDW) is usually performed weekly to monthly. Wedge factors are measured with ion-chamber, and profiles usually with diode-arrays such as the Profiler. The use of an electronic portal imaging device (EPID) for these measurements would combine these into a single rapid set-up and measurement. Currently the Varian EPID in standard imaging mode will not acquire integrated images during EDW treatments, and therefore has not been utilised for EDW dosimetry. Modification to image acquisition was made to enable imaging for EDW, and the performance of the EPID for suitability for quality assurance of EDW was investigated. The accuracy of EDW profiles measured with the EPID were assessed by comparison to Profiler measurements. The EPID was positioned at 105 cm to the detector surface, with 4 cm of additional solid water build-up to give total build-up including EPID inherent build-up of 5 cm. Images of EDW fields were acquired with continuous frame-averaging throughout the delivery. Field sizes of 10x10 cm, and 20x20 cm were used for 30 deg and 60 deg wedge angles for both 6 MV and 18 MV x-rays. Profiler measurements of the same fields were made with 5 cm of solid water build-up with 105 cm to the detector. Profiles in the wedged direction along the central axis of the beam were then compared. The reproducibility of the EPID measured profiles was assessed by three measurements made at weekly intervals. The accuracy of EPID measured wedge factors was investigated with the same experimental set-up. Three images of a 10x10 cm open field were acquired, and the mean pixel value in a 9x9 pixel region at the central axis was found. As the pixel value is the average of all acquired frames, this was multiplied by the number of frames to yield an integrated pixel value. This was repeated for three 10x10 cm 60 deg wedge irradiations. The wedge factor measured with the EPID was then compared to routine weekly

  11. A micromachined calorimetric gas sensor: an application of electrodeposited nanostructured palladium for the detection of combustible gases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartlett, Philip N; Guerin, Samuel

    2003-01-01

    Palladium films with regular nanoarchitectures were electrochemically deposited from the hexagonal (H1) lyotropic liquid crystalline phase of the nonionic surfactant octaethyleneglycol monohexadecyl ether (C16EO8) onto micromachined silicon hotplate structures. The H1-e Pd films were shown to have high surface areas (approximately 28 m2 g(-1)) and to act as effective and stable catalysts for the detection of methane in air on heating to 500 degrees C. The response of the H1-e Pd-coated planar pellistors was found to be linearly proportional to the concentration of methane between 0 and 2.5% in air with a detection limit below 0.125%. Our results show that the electrochemical deposition of nanostructured metal films offers a promising approach to the fabrication of micromachined calorimetric gas sensors for combustible gases.

  12. Simulation of the Mitra 15 micro-machine on IBM 360/91. Microprogramming of the fast Fourier transform

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Augustides, Jean

    1973-01-01

    As computing time did not allow working in real time, and as different methods had been proposed to reduce the computing time (the Cooley-Tuckey method, the use of specific FFT processors), this thesis proposes an intermediate solution, between the entirely programmed solution and the entirely cabled solution. After some generalities on micro-programming (definition, history, benefits and drawbacks, perspectives), the author reports the micro-programming of the Mitra 15 micro-machine: description of the machine, memory, command memory and associated circuits, interruptions and suspensions, descriptions of micro-statements, execution of a micro-statement. Programs and subroutines developed for the modelling of Mitra 15 micro-machine on IBM 360/91 are presented. Then, the author reports the micro-programming of the fast Fourier transform: theory, program description, and test

  13. Investigation of turbulent wedges generated by different single surface roughness elements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Traphan, Dominik; Meinlschmidt, Peter; Lutz, Otto; Peinke, Joachim; Gülker, Gerd

    2013-11-01

    It is known that small faults on rotor blades of wind turbines can cause significant power loss. In order to better understand the governing physical effects, in this experimental study, the formation of a turbulent wedge over a flat plate induced by single surface roughness elements is under investigation. The experiments are performed at different ambient pressure gradients, thus allowing conclusions about the formation of a turbulent wedge over an airfoil. With respect to typical initial faults on operating airfoils, the roughness elements are modified in both size and shape (raised or recessed). None intrusive experimental methods, such as stereoscopic PIV and LDA, enable investigations based on temporally and spatially highly resolved velocity measurements. In this way, a spectral analysis of the turbulent boundary layer is performed and differences in coherent structures within the wedge are identified. These findings are correlated with global measurements of the wedge carried out by infrared thermography. This correlation aims to enable distinguishing the cause and main properties of a turbulent wedge by the easy applicable method of infrared thermography, which is of practical relevance in the field of condition monitoring of wind turbines.

  14. Study and evaluation of the Siemens virtual wedge factor: dosimetric monitor system and variable field effects

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sendon Rio, J R Sendon; Martinez, C Otero; GarcIa, M Sanchez; Busto, R Lobato; Vega, V Luna; Sueiro, J Mosquera; Camean, M Pombar [Servizo de Radiofisica e Proteccion Radioloxica, Complexo Hospitalario Universitario de Santiago de Compostela (CHUS), Santiago de Compostela (Spain)], E-mail: jose.ramon.sendon.del.rio@sergas.es

    2008-03-07

    In the year 1997 Siemens introduced the virtual wedge in its accelerators. The idea was that a dose profile similar to that of a physical wedge can be obtained by moving one of the accelerator jaws at a constant speed while the dose rate is changing. This work explores the observed behaviour of virtual wedge factors. A model is suggested which takes into account that at any point in time, when the jaw moves, the dose at a point of interest in the phantom is not only due to the direct beam. It also depends on the scattered radiation in the phantom, the head scatter and the behaviour of the monitoring system of the accelerator. Measurements are performed in a Siemens Primus accelerator and compared to the model predictions. It is shown that the model agrees reasonably well with measurements spanning a wide range of conditions. A strong dependence of virtual wedge factors on the dosimetric board has been confirmed and an explanation has been given on how the balance between different contributions is responsible for virtual wedge factors values.

  15. Characterizing and configuring motorized wedge for a new generation telecobalt machine in a treatment planning system

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kinhikar Rajesh

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available A new generation telecobalt unit, Theratron Equinox-80, (MDS Nordion, Canada has been evaluated. It is equipped with a single 60-degree motorized wedge (MW, four universal wedges (UW for 150, 300, 450 and 600. MW was configured in Eclipse (Varian, Palo Alto, USA 3D treatment planning system (TPS. The profiles and central axis depth doses (CADD were measured with radiation field analyzer blue water phantom for MW. These profiles and CADD for MW were compared with UW in a homogeneous phantom generated in Eclipse for various field sizes. The absolute dose was measured for a field size of 10 x 10 cm2 only in a MEDTEC water phantom at 10 cm depth with a 0.13 cc thimble ion chamber (Scanditronix Wellhofer, Uppsala, Sweden and a NE electrometer (Nuclear Enterprises, UK. Measured dose with ion chamber was compared with the TPS predicted dose. MW angle was verified on the Equinox for four angles (15o, 30o, 45o and 60o. The variation in measured and calculated dose at 10 cm depth was within 2%. The measured and the calculated wedge angles were in well agreement within 2o. The motorized wedges were successfully configured in Eclipse for four wedge angles.

  16. Internship guide : Work placements step by step

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Haag, Esther

    2013-01-01

    Internship Guide: Work Placements Step by Step has been written from the practical perspective of a placement coordinator. This book addresses the following questions : what problems do students encounter when they start thinking about the jobs their degree programme prepares them for? How do you

  17. The way to collisions, step by step

    CERN Multimedia

    2009-01-01

    While the LHC sectors cool down and reach the cryogenic operating temperature, spirits are warming up as we all eagerly await the first collisions. No reason to hurry, though. Making particles collide involves the complex manoeuvring of thousands of delicate components. The experts will make it happen using a step-by-step approach.

  18. A quantum hybrid with a thin antenna at the vertex of a wedge

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Carlone, Raffaele, E-mail: raffaele.carlone@unina.it [Università “Federico II” di Napoli, Dipartimento di Matematica e Applicazioni “R. Caccioppoli”, MSA, via Cinthia, I-80126, Napoli (Italy); Posilicano, Andrea, E-mail: andrea.posilicano@uninsubria.it [DiSAT, Università dell' Insubria, via Valleggio 11, I-22100, Como (Italy)

    2017-03-26

    We study the spectrum, resonances and scattering matrix of a quantum Hamiltonian on a “hybrid surface” consisting of a half-line attached by its endpoint to the vertex of a concave planar wedge. At the boundary of the wedge, outside the vertex, homogeneous Dirichlet conditions are imposed. The system is tunable by varying the measure of the angle at the vertex. - Highlights: • Spectral characterization of a quantum Hamiltonian on “hybrid surface” consisting of a halfline attached to the vertex of a concave planar wedge. • The system is tunable by varying the measure of the angle at the vertex. • Relation between the conduction properties inside the hybrid and formation of resonances. • Easy generalization of the results to more complicated structures.

  19. Dispersion analysis and measurement of circular cylindrical wedge-like acoustic waveguides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Tai-Ho

    2015-09-01

    This study investigated the propagation of flexural waves along the outer edge of a circular cylindrical wedge, the phase velocities, and the corresponding mode displacements. Thus far, only approximate solutions have been derived because the corresponding boundary-value problems are complex. In this study, dispersion curves were determined using the bi-dimensional finite element method and derived through the separation of variables and the Hamilton principle. Modal displacement calculations clarified that the maximal deformations appeared at the outer edge of the wedge tip. Numerical examples indicated how distinct thin-film materials deposited on the outer surface of the circular cylindrical wedge influenced the dispersion curves. Additionally, dispersion curves were measured using a laser-induced guided wave, a knife-edge measurement scheme, and a two-dimensional fast Fourier transform method. Both the numerical and experimental results correlated closely, thus validating the numerical solution. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. Electromagnetic Scattering from a PEC Wedge Capped with Cylindrical Layers with Dielectric and Conductive Properties

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. Ozturk

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Electromagnetic scattering from a layered capped wedge is studied. The wedge is assumed infinite in z-direction (longitudinal and capped with arbitrary layers of dielectric with varying thicknesses and dielectric properties including conductive loss. Scalar Helmholtz equation in two dimensions is formulated for each solution region and a matrix of unknown coefficients are arrived at for electric field representation. Closed form expressions are derived for 2- and 3-layer geometries. Numerical simulations are performed for different wedge shapes and dielectric layer properties and compared to PEC-only case. It has been shown that significant reduction in scattered electric field can be obtained with 2- and 3-layered cap geometries. Total electric field in the far field normalized to incident field is also computed as a precursor to RCS analysis. Analytical results can be useful in radar cross section analysis for aerial vehicles.

  1. The synthesis and adsorption properties of some carbohydrate-terminated dendrimer wedges

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ainsworth, Richard L.

    1997-01-01

    A range of dendritic molecules that are designed to bind to a cotton surface has been synthesised. The architecture of the molecules allows the location of various functional, property modifying units at the focus and the attachment of recognition groups at the periphery of a dendritic molecule with wedge topology. The synthesis and characterisation of dendrimer wedges up to the second generation using a divergent approach has been performed. These wedges are readily built up using a simple and efficient stepwise pathway from the central core, and surface recognising species are subsequently attached to the molecule utilising procedures developed in conjunction with Unilever Research Laboratories. Work has been carried out to assess their adsorption onto a cotton surface and the postulated adsorption mechanism is discussed. (author)

  2. Microsoft Office professional 2010 step by step

    CERN Document Server

    Cox, Joyce; Frye, Curtis

    2011-01-01

    Teach yourself exactly what you need to know about using Office Professional 2010-one step at a time! With STEP BY STEP, you build and practice new skills hands-on, at your own pace. Covering Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, Outlook, Excel, Access, Publisher, and OneNote, this book will help you learn the core features and capabilities needed to: Create attractive documents, publications, and spreadsheetsManage your e-mail, calendar, meetings, and communicationsPut your business data to workDevelop and deliver great presentationsOrganize your ideas and notes in one placeConnect, share, and accom

  3. Spacing of Imbricated Thrust Faults and the Strength of Thrust-Belts and Accretionary Wedges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ito, G.; Regensburger, P. V.; Moore, G. F.

    2017-12-01

    The pattern of imbricated thrust blocks is a prominent characteristic of the large-scale structure of thrust-belts and accretionary wedges around the world. Mechanical models of these systems have a rich history from laboratory analogs, and more recently from computational simulations, most of which, qualitatively reproduce the regular patterns of imbricated thrusts seen in nature. Despite the prevalence of these patterns in nature and in models, our knowledge of what controls the spacing of the thrusts remains immature at best. We tackle this problem using a finite difference, particle-in-cell method that simulates visco-elastic-plastic deformation with a Mohr-Coulomb brittle failure criterion. The model simulates a horizontal base that moves toward a rigid vertical backstop, carrying with it an overlying layer of crust. The crustal layer has a greater frictional strength than the base, is cohesive, and is initially uniform in thickness. As the layer contracts, a series of thrust blocks immerge sequentially and form a wedge having a mean taper consistent with that predicted by a noncohesive, critical Coulomb wedge. The widths of the thrust blocks (or spacing between adjacent thrusts) are greatest at the front of the wedge, tend to decrease with continued contraction, and then tend toward a pseudo-steady, minimum width. Numerous experiments show that the characteristic spacing of thrusts increases with the brittle strength of the wedge material (cohesion + friction) and decreases with increasing basal friction for low (laws that will illuminate the basic physical processes controlling systems, as well as allow researchers to use observations of thrust spacing as an independent constraint on the brittle strength of wedges as well as their bases.

  4. Wedge geometry, frictional properties and interseismic coupling of the Java megathrust

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koulali, Achraf; McClusky, Simon; Cummins, Phil; Tregoning, Paul

    2018-06-01

    The mechanical interaction between rocks at fault zones is a key element for understanding how earthquakes nucleate and propagate. Therefore, estimating frictional properties along fault planes allows us to infer the degree of elastic strain accumulation throughout the seismic cycle. The Java subduction zone is an active plate boundary where high seismic activity has long been documented. However, very little is known about the seismogenic processes of the megathrust, especially its shallowest portion where onshore geodetic networks are insensitive to recover the pattern of elastic strain. Here, we use the geometry of the offshore accretionary prism to infer frictional properties along the Java subduction zone, using Coulomb critical taper theory. We show that large portions of the inner wedge in the eastern part of the Java subduction megathrust are in a critical state, where the wedge is on the verge of failure everywhere. We identify four clusters with an internal coefficient of friction μint of ∼ 0.8 and hydrostatic pore pressure within the wedge. The average effective coefficient of friction ranges between 0.3 and 0.4, reflecting a strong décollement. Our results also show that the aftershock sequence of the 1994 Mw 7.9 earthquake halted adjacent to a critical segment of the wedge, suggesting that critical taper wedge areas in the eastern Java subduction interface may behave as a permanent barrier to large earthquake rupture. In contrast, in western Java topographic slope and slab dip profiles suggest that the wedge is mechanically stable, i.e deformation is restricted to sliding along the décollement, and likely to coincide with a seismogenic portion of the megathrust. We discuss the seismic hazard implications and highlight the importance of considering the segmentation of the Java subduction zone when assessing the seismic hazard of this region.

  5. Cementless Hip Stem Anteversion in the Dysplastic Hip: A Comparison of Tapered Wedge vs Metaphyseal Filling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taniguchi, Naofumi; Jinno, Tetsuya; Koga, Daisuke; Hagino, Tetsuo; Okawa, Atsushi; Haro, Hirotaka

    2017-05-01

    Appropriate stem anteversion is important for achieving stability of the prosthetic joint in total hip arthroplasty. Anteversion of a cementless femoral stem is affected by the femoral canal morphology and varies according to stem geometry. We investigated the difference and variation of the increase in anteversion between 2 types of cementless stems, and the correlation between each stem and the preoperative femoral anteversion. We retrospectively compared 2 groups of hips that underwent total hip arthroplasty using a metaphyseal filling stem (78 hips) or a tapered wedge stem (83 hips). All the patients had osteoarthritis due to hip dysplasia. Computed tomography was used to measure preoperative femoral anteversion at 5 levels and postoperative stem anteversion. The increase in anteversion of the tapered wedge stem group (22.7° ± 11.6°) was more than that of the metaphyseal filling stem group (17.2° ± 8.3°; P = .0007). The variation of the increase in the tapered wedge stem group was significantly larger than that in the metaphyseal filling stem group (P = .0016). The metaphyseal filling stem group was more highly and positively correlated with femoral anteversion than the tapered wedge stem group. Femoral anteversion affects stem anteversion differently according to stem geometry. The tapered wedge stems had greater variation of the increase in anteversion than did the metaphyseal filling stems. Based on the results of this study, it is difficult to preoperatively estimate the increase in stem anteversion for tapered wedge stems. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Chronology and palaeoenvironmental implications of the ice-wedge pseudomorphs and composite-wedge casts on the Magdalen Islands (eastern Canada)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Remillard, A.M.; Hetu, B.; Bernatchez, P.

    2015-01-01

    to the former presence of permafrost under periglacial conditions. These features truncate Carboniferous sandstone or Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) glacial and glaciomarine diamicts, both overlain by subtidal or coastal units. Six optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) and four radiocarbon ages were obtained from......The Magdalen Islands are a valuable terrestrial record, evidencing the complex glacial and periglacial history of the Gulf of St. Lawrence. Thirteen structures interpreted as ice-wedge pseudomorphs or composite-wedge casts were observed at four sites on the southern Magdalen Islands and testify...... both host and infilled sedimentary units. These ages provide the first absolute chronological data on these structures, shedding new light on the relationships between glacial and periglacial phases. Our chronostratigraphic data suggest that, after the deglaciation and the emersion of the archipelago...

  7. Contemporary sand wedge development in seasonally frozen ground and paleoenvironmental implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolfe, Stephen A.; Morse, Peter D.; Neudorf, Christina M.; Kokelj, Steven V.; Lian, Olav B.; O'Neill, H. Brendan

    2018-05-01

    Contemporary sand wedges and sand veins are active in seasonally frozen ground within the extensive discontinuous permafrost zone in Northwest Territories, Canada. The region has a subarctic continental climate with 291 mm a-1 precipitation, -4.1 °C mean annual air temperature, warm summers (July mean 17.0 °C), and cold winters (January mean -26.6 °C). Five years of continuous observations indicate that interannual variation of the ground thermal regime is dominantly controlled by winter air temperature and snow cover conditions. At sandy sites, thin snow cover and high thermal conductivity promote rapid freezing, high rates of ground cooling, and low near-surface ground temperatures (-15 to -25 °C), resulting in thermal contraction cracking to depths of 1.2 m. Cracking potentials are high in sandy soils when air temperatures are air temperatures are ≤-17 °C, and snow cover is conditions in peatlands maintain permafrost, but thermal contraction cracking does not occur because thicker snow cover and the thermal properties of peat prolong freezeback and maintain higher winter ground temperatures. A combination of radiocarbon dating, optical dating, and stratigraphic observations were used to differentiate sand wedge types and formation histories. Thermal contraction cracks that develop in the sandy terrain are filled by surface (allochthonous) and/or host (autochthonous) material during the thaw season. Epigenetic sand wedges infilled with allochthonous sand develop within former beach sediments beneath an active eolian sand sheet. Narrower and deeper syngenetic wedges developed within aggrading eolian sand sheets, whereas wider and shallower antisyngenetic wedges developed in areas of active erosion. Thermal contraction cracking beneath vegetation-stabilized surfaces leads to crack infilling by autochthonous host and overlying organic material, with resultant downturning and subsidence of adjacent strata. Sand wedge development in seasonally frozen ground

  8. [Radiocarbon dating of pollen and spores in wedge ice from Iamal and Kolyma].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vasil'chuk, A K

    2004-01-01

    Radiocarbon dating of pollen concentrate from late Pleistocene syngenetic wedge ice was carried out using acceleration mass spectrometry (AMS) in Seyakha and Bizon sections. Comparison of the obtained dating with palynological analysis and AMS radiocarbon dating previously obtained for other organic fractions of the same samples allowed us to evaluate accuracy of dating of different fractions. Quantitative tests for data evaluation were considered in terms of possible autochthonous or allochthonous accumulation of the material on the basis of pre-Pleistocene pollen content in these samples. Paleoecological information content of pollen spectra from late Pleistocene syngenetic wedge ice was evaluated.

  9. Uniform physical theory of diffraction equivalent edge currents for truncated wedge strips

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Johansen, Peter Meincke

    1996-01-01

    New uniform closed-form expressions for physical theory of diffraction equivalent edge currents are derived for truncated incremental wedge strips. In contrast to previously reported expressions, the new expressions are well behaved for all directions of incidence and observation and take a finite...... value for zero strip length. This means that the expressions are well suited for implementation in general computer codes. The new expressions are expressed as the difference between two terms. The first term is obtained by integrating the exact fringe wave current on a wedge along an untruncated...

  10. Wedge-shaped parenchymal enhancement peripheral to the hepatic hemangioma : two-phase spiral CT findings

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Kyoung Won; Kim, Tae Kyoung; Han, Joon Koo; Kim, Ah Young; Lee, Hyun Ju; Song, Chi Sung; Choi, Byung Ihn

    2000-01-01

    To determine the incidence of hepatic hemangiomas associated with wedge-shaped parenchymal enhancements adjacent to the tumors as seen on two-phase spiral CT images obtained during the hepatic arterial phase and to characterize the two-phase spiral CT findings of those hemangiomas. One hundred and eight consecutive hepatic hemangiomas in 63 patients who underwent two-phase spiral CT scanning during an 11-month period were included in this study. Two-phase spiral CT scans were obtained during the hepatic arterial phase (30-second delay) and portal venous phase (65-second delay) after injection of 120 mL of contrast material at a rate of 3 mL/sec. We evaluated the frequency with which wedge-shaped parenchymal enhancement was adjacent to the hemangiomas during the hepatic arterial phase and divided hemangiomas into two groups according to whether or not wedge-shaped parenchymal enhancement was noted (Group A and Group B). The presence of such enhancement in hemangiomas was correlated with tumor size and the grade of intratumoral enhancement. In 24 of 108 hemangiomas, wedge-shaped parenchymal enhancement adjacent to hepatic tumors was seen on two-phase CT images obtained during the hepatic arterial phase. Mean hemangioma size was 22mm in group A and 24mm in group B. There was no statistically significant relationship between lesion size and the presence of wedge-shaped parenchymal enhancement adjacent to a hemangioma. In 91.7% and 100% of tumors in Group A, and in 9.6% and 17.8% in Group B, hemangiomas showed more than 50% intratumoral enhancement during the arterial and portal venous phase, respectively. Wedge-shaped parenchymal enhancements peripheral to hepatic hemangiomas was more frequently found in tumors showing more than 50% intratumoral enhancement during these two phases (p less than 0.01). Wedge-shaped parenchymal enhancements is not uncommonly seen adjacent to hepatic hemangiomas on two-phase spiral CT images obtained during the hepatic arterial phase. A

  11. Monte Carlo simulation of the Varian Clinac 600C accelerator using dynamic wedges

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Moreno, S.; Chaves, A.; Lopes, M.C.; Peralta, L.; Universidade de Lisboa

    2004-01-01

    The advent of linear accelerators (linac) with computer-controlled dynamic collimation systems and functional and anatomical imaging techniques allowed a more exact delimitation and localisation of the target volume. These advanced treatment techniques inevitably increase the complexity level of dose calculation because of the introduction of the temporal variable. On account of this, it is mandatory the usage of more accurate modelling techniques of the collimator components, as it is the case of Monte Carlo (MC) simulation, which has created an enormous interest in research and clinical practice. Because the patients bodies are not homogenous nor are their body surfaces plane and regular, the dose distribution may differ significantly from the standard distribution from the linac calibration. It is in the treatment planning systems, which include algorithms that are usually measured in homogeneous water phantoms specific for each correction that the dose distributions from each case are obtained. In a real treatment, exception made to superficial lesions, two or more radiation fields are used in order to obtain the recommended dose distributions. The simplest arrangement is made from two parallel and opposed fields that originate a homogeneous dose distribution in almost all the irradiated volume. The available resources are, for example, different types of energies and of radiation, the application of bolus, the protection of healthy structures, the usage of wedged filters and the application of dynamic wedges. A virtual or dynamic wedge, modelled through the movement