Sample records for single objective improving

  1. An improved marriage in honey bees optimization algorithm for single objective unconstrained optimization. (United States)

    Celik, Yuksel; Ulker, Erkan


    Marriage in honey bees optimization (MBO) is a metaheuristic optimization algorithm developed by inspiration of the mating and fertilization process of honey bees and is a kind of swarm intelligence optimizations. In this study we propose improved marriage in honey bees optimization (IMBO) by adding Levy flight algorithm for queen mating flight and neighboring for worker drone improving. The IMBO algorithm's performance and its success are tested on the well-known six unconstrained test functions and compared with other metaheuristic optimization algorithms.

  2. An Improved Marriage in Honey Bees Optimization Algorithm for Single Objective Unconstrained Optimization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuksel Celik


    Full Text Available Marriage in honey bees optimization (MBO is a metaheuristic optimization algorithm developed by inspiration of the mating and fertilization process of honey bees and is a kind of swarm intelligence optimizations. In this study we propose improved marriage in honey bees optimization (IMBO by adding Levy flight algorithm for queen mating flight and neighboring for worker drone improving. The IMBO algorithm’s performance and its success are tested on the well-known six unconstrained test functions and compared with other metaheuristic optimization algorithms.

  3. Single versus multiple objective(s) decision making: an application ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Single objective approach is most widely used whereas consideration of multiple objectives is the rule rather than an exception in many real life decision-making circumstances. This paper, therefore, investigates whether or not single and multiple criteria/objective approaches necessarily lead to differing conclusions.

  4. Workers' Objectives in Quality Improvement. (United States)

    Brossard, Michel


    A case study of quality circles in an appliance factory found that circle members and nonmembers obtained better working conditions by improving quality through the direct impact of their work on the company's market position. The study of the quality improvement process shows that workers seek more than psychological rewards for their…

  5. Mnemonic strategy training improves memory for object location associations in both healthy elderly and patients with amnestic mild cognitive impairment: a randomized, single-blind study. (United States)

    Hampstead, Benjamin M; Sathian, Krish; Phillips, Pamela A; Amaraneni, Akshay; Delaune, William R; Stringer, Anthony Y


    To evaluate the efficacy of mnemonic strategy training versus a matched-exposure control condition and to examine the relationship between training-related gains, neuropsychological abilities, and medial temporal lobe volumetrics in patients with amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI) and age-matched healthy controls. Twenty-three of 45 screened healthy controls and 29 of 42 screened patients with aMCI were randomized to mnemonic strategy or matched-exposure groups. Groups were run in parallel, with participants blind to the other intervention. All participants completed five sessions within 2 weeks. Memory testing for object-location associations (OLAs) was performed during sessions one and five and at a 1-month follow-up. During Sessions 2-4, participants received either mnemonic strategy training or a matched number of exposures with corrective feedback for a total of 45 OLAs. Structural magnetic resonance imaging was performed in most participants, and medial temporal lobe volumetrics were acquired. Twenty-one healthy controls and 28 patients with aMCI were included in data analysis. Mnemonic strategy training was significantly more beneficial than matched exposure immediately after training, p = .006, partial η2 = .16, and at 1 month, p Mnemonic strategy-related improvement was correlated positively with baseline memory and executive functioning and negatively with inferior lateral ventricle volume in patients with aMCI; no significant relationships were evident in matched-exposure patients. Mnemonic strategies effectively improve memory for specific content for at least 1 month in patients with aMCI.

  6. Multi-objective vs. single-objective calibration of a hydrologic model using single- and multi-objective screening (United States)

    Mai, Juliane; Cuntz, Matthias; Shafii, Mahyar; Zink, Matthias; Schäfer, David; Thober, Stephan; Samaniego, Luis; Tolson, Bryan


    Hydrologic models are traditionally calibrated against observed streamflow. Recent studies have shown however, that only a few global model parameters are constrained using this kind of integral signal. They can be identified using prior screening techniques. Since different objectives might constrain different parameters, it is advisable to use multiple information to calibrate those models. One common approach is to combine these multiple objectives (MO) into one single objective (SO) function and allow the use of a SO optimization algorithm. Another strategy is to consider the different objectives separately and apply a MO Pareto optimization algorithm. In this study, two major research questions will be addressed: 1) How do multi-objective calibrations compare with corresponding single-objective calibrations? 2) How much do calibration results deteriorate when the number of calibrated parameters is reduced by a prior screening technique? The hydrologic model employed in this study is a distributed hydrologic model (mHM) with 52 model parameters, i.e. transfer coefficients. The model uses grid cells as a primary hydrologic unit, and accounts for processes like snow accumulation and melting, soil moisture dynamics, infiltration, surface runoff, evapotranspiration, subsurface storage and discharge generation. The model is applied in three distinct catchments over Europe. The SO calibrations are performed using the Dynamically Dimensioned Search (DDS) algorithm with a fixed budget while the MO calibrations are achieved using the Pareto Dynamically Dimensioned Search (PA-DDS) algorithm allowing for the same budget. The two objectives used here are the Nash Sutcliffe Efficiency (NSE) of the simulated streamflow and the NSE of the logarithmic transformation. It is shown that the SO DDS results are located close to the edges of the Pareto fronts of the PA-DDS. The MO calibrations are hence preferable due to their supply of multiple equivalent solutions from which the

  7. Generating object proposals for improved object detection in aerial images (United States)

    Sommer, Lars W.; Schuchert, Tobias; Beyerer, Jürgen


    Screening of aerial images covering large areas is important for many applications such as surveillance, tracing or rescue tasks. To reduce the workload of image analysts, an automatic detection of candidate objects is required. In general, object detection is performed by applying classifiers or a cascade of classifiers within a sliding window algorithm. However, the huge number of windows to classify, especially in case of multiple object scales, makes these approaches computationally expensive. To overcome this challenge, we reduce the number of candidate windows by generating so called object proposals. Object proposals are a set of candidate regions in an image that are likely to contain an object. We apply the Selective Search approach that has been broadly used as proposals method for detectors like R-CNN or Fast R-CNN. Therefore, a set of small regions is generated by initial segmentation followed by hierarchical grouping of the initial regions to generate proposals at different scales. To reduce the computational costs of the original approach, which consists of 80 combinations of segmentation settings and grouping strategies, we only apply the most appropriate combination. Therefore, we analyze the impact of varying segmentation settings, different merging strategies, and various colour spaces by calculating the recall with regard to the number of object proposals and the intersection over union between generated proposals and ground truth annotations. As aerial images differ considerably from datasets that are typically used for exploring object proposals methods, in particular in object size and the image fraction occupied by an object, we further adapt the Selective Search algorithm to aerial images by replacing the random order of generated proposals by a weighted order based on the object proposal size and integrate a termination criterion for the merging strategies. Finally, the adapted approach is compared to the original Selective Search algorithm

  8. A method of object recognition for single pixel imaging (United States)

    Li, Boxuan; Zhang, Wenwen


    Computational ghost imaging(CGI), utilizing a single-pixel detector, has been extensively used in many fields. However, in order to achieve a high-quality reconstructed image, a large number of iterations are needed, which limits the flexibility of using CGI in practical situations, especially in the field of object recognition. In this paper, we purpose a method utilizing the feature matching to identify the number objects. In the given system, approximately 90% of accuracy of recognition rates can be achieved, which provides a new idea for the application of single pixel imaging in the field of object recognition

  9. Posture Support Improves Object Individuation in Infants (United States)

    Woods, Rebecca J.; Wilcox, Teresa


    A hierarchical progression in infants' ability to use surface features, such as color, as a basis for object individuation in the first year has been well established (Tremoulet, Leslie, & Hall, 2000; Wilcox, 1999). There is evidence, however, that infants' sensitivity to surface features can be increased through multisensory (i.e.,…

  10. Multi-objective compared to single-objective optimization with application to model validation and uncertainty quantification

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schulze-Riegert, R.; Krosche, M.; Stekolschikov, K. [Scandpower Petroleum Technology GmbH, Hamburg (Germany); Fahimuddin, A. [Technische Univ. Braunschweig (Germany)


    History Matching in Reservoir Simulation, well location and production optimization etc. is generally a multi-objective optimization problem. The problem statement of history matching for a realistic field case includes many field and well measurements in time and type, e.g. pressure measurements, fluid rates, events such as water and gas break-throughs, etc. Uncertainty parameters modified as part of the history matching process have varying impact on the improvement of the match criteria. Competing match criteria often reduce the likelihood of finding an acceptable history match. It is an engineering challenge in manual history matching processes to identify competing objectives and to implement the changes required in the simulation model. In production optimization or scenario optimization the focus on one key optimization criterion such as NPV limits the identification of alternatives and potential opportunities, since multiple objectives are summarized in a predefined global objective formulation. Previous works primarily focus on a specific optimization method. Few works actually concentrate on the objective formulation and multi-objective optimization schemes have not yet been applied to reservoir simulations. This paper presents a multi-objective optimization approach applicable to reservoir simulation. It addresses the problem of multi-objective criteria in a history matching study and presents analysis techniques identifying competing match criteria. A Pareto-Optimizer is discussed and the implementation of that multi-objective optimization scheme is applied to a case study. Results are compared to a single-objective optimization method. (orig.)

  11. Single Object Tracking With Fuzzy Least Squares Support Vector Machine. (United States)

    Zhang, Shunli; Zhao, Sicong; Sui, Yao; Zhang, Li


    Single object tracking, in which a target is often initialized manually in the first frame and then is tracked and located automatically in the subsequent frames, is a hot topic in computer vision. The traditional tracking-by-detection framework, which often formulates tracking as a binary classification problem, has been widely applied and achieved great success in single object tracking. However, there are some potential issues in this formulation. For instance, the boundary between the positive and negative training samples is fuzzy, and the objectives of tracking and classification are inconsistent. In this paper, we attempt to address the above issues from the fuzzy system perspective and propose a novel tracking method by formulating tracking as a fuzzy classification problem. First, we introduce the fuzzy strategy into tracking and propose a novel fuzzy tracking framework, which can measure the importance of the training samples by assigning different memberships to them and offer more strict spatial constraints. Second, we develop a fuzzy least squares support vector machine (FLS-SVM) approach and employ it to implement a concrete tracker. In particular, the primal form, dual form, and kernel form of FLS-SVM are analyzed and the corresponding closed-form solutions are derived for efficient realizations. Besides, a least squares regression model is built to control the update adaptively, retaining the robustness of the appearance model. The experimental results demonstrate that our method can achieve comparable or superior performance to many state-of-the-art methods.

  12. Object learning improves feature extraction but does not improve feature selection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Linus Holm

    Full Text Available A single glance at your crowded desk is enough to locate your favorite cup. But finding an unfamiliar object requires more effort. This superiority in recognition performance for learned objects has at least two possible sources. For familiar objects observers might: 1 select more informative image locations upon which to fixate their eyes, or 2 extract more information from a given eye fixation. To test these possibilities, we had observers localize fragmented objects embedded in dense displays of random contour fragments. Eight participants searched for objects in 600 images while their eye movements were recorded in three daily sessions. Performance improved as subjects trained with the objects: The number of fixations required to find an object decreased by 64% across the 3 sessions. An ideal observer model that included measures of fragment confusability was used to calculate the information available from a single fixation. Comparing human performance to the model suggested that across sessions information extraction at each eye fixation increased markedly, by an amount roughly equal to the extra information that would be extracted following a 100% increase in functional field of view. Selection of fixation locations, on the other hand, did not improve with practice.

  13. Analysis and optimization with ecological objective function of irreversible single resonance energy selective electron heat engines

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhou, Junle; Chen, Lingen; Ding, Zemin; Sun, Fengrui


    Ecological performance of a single resonance ESE heat engine with heat leakage is conducted by applying finite time thermodynamics. By introducing Nielsen function and numerical calculations, expressions about power output, efficiency, entropy generation rate and ecological objective function are derived; relationships between ecological objective function and power output, between ecological objective function and efficiency as well as between power output and efficiency are demonstrated; influences of system parameters of heat leakage, boundary energy and resonance width on the optimal performances are investigated in detail; a specific range of boundary energy is given as a compromise to make ESE heat engine system work at optimal operation regions. Comparing performance characteristics with different optimization objective functions, the significance of selecting ecological objective function as the design objective is clarified specifically: when changing the design objective from maximum power output into maximum ecological objective function, the improvement of efficiency is 4.56%, while the power output drop is only 2.68%; when changing the design objective from maximum efficiency to maximum ecological objective function, the improvement of power output is 229.13%, and the efficiency drop is only 13.53%. - Highlights: • An irreversible single resonance energy selective electron heat engine is studied. • Heat leakage between two reservoirs is considered. • Power output, efficiency and ecological objective function are derived. • Optimal performance comparison for three objective functions is carried out.

  14. Single sided tomography of extremely large dense objects

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Thoe, R.S.


    One can envision many circumstances where radiography could be valuable but is frustrated by the geometry of the object to be radiographed. For example, extremely large objects, the separation of rocket propellants from the skin of solid fuel rocket motor, the structural integrity of an underground tank or hull of a ship, the location of buried objects, inspection of large castings etc. The author has been investigating ways to do this type of radiography and as a result has developed a technique which can be used to obtain three dimensional radiographs using Compton scattered radiation from a monochromatic source and a high efficiency, high resolution germanium spectrometer. This paper gives specific details of the reconstruction technique and presents the results of numerous numerical simulations and compares these simulations to spectra obtained in the laboratory. In addition the author presents the results of calculations made for the development of an alternative single sided radiography technique which will permit inspection of the interior of large objects. As a benchmark the author seeks to obtain three dimensional images with a resolution of about one cubic centimeter in a concrete cube 30 centimeters on a side. Such a device must use photons of very high energy. For example 30 cm of concrete represents about 15 mean free paths for photons of 100 keV, whereas at 1 MeV the attenuation is down to about five mean free paths. At these higher energies Compton scattering becomes much more probable. Although this would appear to be advantageous for single sided imaging techniques, such techniques are hampered by two side effects. In this paper the results are given of numerous Monte Carlo calculations detailing the extent of the multiple scattering and the feasibility of a variety of imaging schemes is explored.

  15. From tomography to FWI with a single objective function

    KAUST Repository

    Alkhalifah, Tariq Ali


    Reflections in our seismic data induce serious nonlinear behavior in the objective function of full waveform inversion (FWI). Thus, without a good initial velocity model, that can produce the reflections within a cycle of the frequency used in the inversion, convergence to the solution becomes hard. Such velocity models are usually extracted from migration velocity analysis or traveltime tomography, among other means, that are not guaranteed to adhere to the FWI requirements. As such, we promote an objective function based on the misfit in the instantaneous traveltime between the observed and modeled data. This phase based attribute of the wavefield, along with its phase unwrapping features, provide a frequency dependent traveltime function. With strong damping of the of the synthetic, potentially low frequency, data, this attribute admits first arrival traveltime that could be compared with picked ones from the observed data, like in wave equation tomography. As we relax the damping on the synthetic and observed data, the objective function measures the misfit in the phase, however unwrapped in an FWI type inversion. It, thus, provides a single objective function and a natural transition from traveltime tomography to full waveform inversion. A Marmousi example demonstrates the effectiveness of the approach.

  16. Improving a real-time object detector with compact temporal information

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ahrnbom, Martin; Jensen, Morten Bornø; Åström, Kalle


    Neural networks designed for real-time object detection have recently improved significantly, but in practice, look- ing at only a single RGB image at the time may not be ideal. For example, when detecting objects in videos, a foreground detection algorithm can be used to obtain compact temporal ...

  17. Detecting Flying Objects Using a Single Moving Camera. (United States)

    Rozantsev, Artem; Lepetit, Vincent; Fua, Pascal


    We propose an approach for detecting flying objects such as Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) and aircrafts when they occupy a small portion of the field of view, possibly moving against complex backgrounds, and are filmed by a camera that itself moves. We argue that solving such a difficult problem requires combining both appearance and motion cues. To this end we propose a regression-based approach for object-centric motion stabilization of image patches that allows us to achieve effective classification on spatio-temporal image cubes and outperform state-of-the-art techniques. As this problem has not yet been extensively studied, no test datasets are publicly available. We therefore built our own, both for UAVs and aircrafts, and will make them publicly available so they can be used to benchmark future flying object detection and collision avoidance algorithms.

  18. Single-molecule microscopy using silicone oil immersion objective lenses

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hink, M.


    Microscopy techniques capable of detecting individual molecules and providing quantitative data have the potential to offer great biological insight; however, such approaches require the efficient capture of light. Here, Mark Hink explains how the use of new silicone oil immersion objective lenses

  19. Medical image segmentation via atlases and fuzzy object models: Improving efficacy through optimum object search and fewer models. (United States)

    Phellan, Renzo; Falcão, Alexandre X; Udupa, Jayaram K


    Statistical object shape models (SOSMs), known as probabilistic atlases, are popular in medical image segmentation. They register an image into the atlas coordinate system, such that a desired object can be delineated from the constraints of its shape model. While this strategy facilitates segmenting objects with even weak-boundary contrast, it tends to require more models per object to cope with possible registration errors. Fuzzy object shape models (FOSMs) gain substantial speed by avoiding image registration and placing more relaxed model constraints with optimum object search. However, they tend to require stronger object boundary contrast for effective delineation. In this work, the authors show that optimum object search, the essential underpinning of FOSMs, can improve segmentation efficacy of SOSMs with fewer models per object. For the sake of efficiency, the authors use three atlases per object (SOSM-3) as baseline for segmentation based on the best match with posterior probability maps. A novel strategy for SOSM with a single atlas and optimum object search (SOSM-S) is presented. When registering an image to the atlas system, one should expect that the object's boundary falls within the uncertainty region of the model-region wherein voxels show probabilities greater than 0 and less than 1 to be in the object. Since registration may fail, SOSM-S translates the atlas locally and, at each location, delineates and scores a candidate object in the uncertainty region. Segmentation is defined by the candidate with the highest score. The presented FOSM also uses a single model per object, but model construction uses only shape translations, building a fuzzy object model with larger uncertainty region. Optimum object search requires estimation of the object's location and/or optimization algorithms to speed-up segmentation. The authors evaluate SOSM-3, SOSM-S, and FOSM on 75 CT-images of the thorax and 35 MR T1-weighted images of the brain, with nine objects of

  20. Improved Object Proposals with Geometrical Features for Autonomous Driving

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yiliu Feng


    Full Text Available This paper aims at generating high-quality object proposals for object detection in autonomous driving. Most existing proposal generation methods are designed for the general object detection, which may not perform well in a particular scene. We propose several geometrical features suited for autonomous driving and integrate them into state-of-the-art general proposal generation methods. In particular, we formulate the integration as a feature fusion problem by fusing the geometrical features with existing proposal generation methods in a Bayesian framework. Experiments on the challenging KITTI benchmark demonstrate that our approach improves the existing methods significantly. Combined with a convolutional neural net detector, our approach achieves state-of-the-art performance on all three KITTI object classes.

  1. Improved multi-objective clustering algorithm using particle swarm optimization.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Congcong Gong

    Full Text Available Multi-objective clustering has received widespread attention recently, as it can obtain more accurate and reasonable solution. In this paper, an improved multi-objective clustering framework using particle swarm optimization (IMCPSO is proposed. Firstly, a novel particle representation for clustering problem is designed to help PSO search clustering solutions in continuous space. Secondly, the distribution of Pareto set is analyzed. The analysis results are applied to the leader selection strategy, and make algorithm avoid trapping in local optimum. Moreover, a clustering solution-improved method is proposed, which can increase the efficiency in searching clustering solution greatly. In the experiments, 28 datasets are used and nine state-of-the-art clustering algorithms are compared, the proposed method is superior to other approaches in the evaluation index ARI.

  2. An improved single-plaquette gauge action

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Banerjee, D.; Bögli, M.; Holland, K.; Niedermayer, F.; Pepe, M.; Wenger, University; Wiese, UniversityJ.


    We describe and test a nonperturbatively improved single-plaquette lattice action for 4-d SU(2) and SU(3) pure gauge theory, which suppresses large fluctuations of the plaquette, without requiring the naive continuum limit for smooth fields. We tune the action parameters based on torelon masses in moderate cubic physical volumes, and investigate the size of cut-off effects in other physical quantities, including torelon masses in asymmetric spatial volumes, the static quark potential, and gradient flow observables. In 2-d O(N) models similarly constructed nearest-neighbor actions have led to a drastic reduction of cut-off effects, down to the permille level, in a wide variety of physical quantities. In the gauge theories, we find significant reduction of lattice artifacts, and for some observables, the coarsest lattice result is very close to the continuum value. We estimate an improvement factor of 40 compared to using the Wilson gauge action to achieve the same statistical accuracy and suppression of cut-off effects.

  3. Single-objective vs. multi-objective autocalibration in modelling total suspended solids and phosphorus in a small agricultural watershed with SWAT. (United States)

    Rasolomanana, Santatriniaina Denise; Lessard, Paul; Vanrolleghem, Peter A


    To obtain greater precision in modelling small agricultural watersheds, a shorter simulation time step is beneficial. A daily time step better represents the dynamics of pollutants in the river and provides more realistic simulation results. However, with a daily evaluation performance, good fits are rarely obtained. With the Shuffled Complex Evolution (SCE) method embedded in the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT), two calibration approaches are available, single-objective or multi-objective optimization. The goal of the present study is to evaluate which approach can improve the daily performance with SWAT, in modelling flow (Q), total suspended solids (TSS) and total phosphorus (TP). The influence of weights assigned to the different variables included in the objective function has also been tested. The results showed that: (i) the model performance depends not only on the choice of calibration approach, but essentially on the influential parameters; (ii) the multi-objective calibration estimating at once all parameters related to all measured variables is the best approach to model Q, TSS and TP; (iii) changing weights does not improve model performance; and (iv) with a single-objective optimization, an excellent water quality modelling performance may hide a loss of performance of predicting flows and unbalanced internal model components.

  4. Single-objective optimization of thermo-electric coolers using genetic algorithm (United States)

    Khanh, Doan V. K.; Vasant, P.; Elamvazuthi, Irraivan; Dieu, Vo N.


    Thermo-electric Coolers (TECs) nowadays is applied in a wide range of thermal energy systems. This is due to its superior features where no refrigerant and dynamic parts are needed. TECs generate no electrical or acoustical noise and are environment friendly. Over the past decades, many researches were employed to improve the efficiency of TECs by enhancing the material parameters and design parameters. The material parameters are restricted by currently available materials and module fabricating technologies. Therefore, the main objective of TECs design is to determine a set of design parameters such as leg area, leg length and the number of legs. Two elements that play an important role when considering the suitability of TECs in applications are rated of refrigeration (ROR) and coefficient of performance (COP). In this paper, the review of some previous researches will be conducted to see the diversity of optimization in the design of TECs in enhancing the performance and efficiency. After that, single objective optimization problems (SOP) will be tested first by using Genetic Algorithm (GA) to optimize geometry properties so that TECs will operate at near optimal conditions. In the future works, multi-objective optimization problems (MOP) using hybrid GA with another optimization technique will be considered to give a better results and compare with previous research such as Non-Dominated Sorting Genetic Algorithm (NSGA-II) to see the advantages and disadvantages.

  5. Improved Space Object Orbit Determination Using CMOS Detectors (United States)

    Schildknecht, T.; Peltonen, J.; Sännti, T.; Silha, J.; Flohrer, T.


    CMOS-sensors, or in general Active Pixel Sensors (APS), are rapidly replacing CCDs in the consumer camera market. Due to significant technological advances during the past years these devices start to compete with CCDs also for demanding scientific imaging applications, in particular in the astronomy community. CMOS detectors offer a series of inherent advantages compared to CCDs, due to the structure of their basic pixel cells, which each contains their own amplifier and readout electronics. The most prominent advantages for space object observations are the extremely fast and flexible readout capabilities, feasibility for electronic shuttering and precise epoch registration, and the potential to perform image processing operations on-chip and in real-time. The major challenges and design drivers for ground-based and space-based optical observation strategies have been analyzed. CMOS detector characteristics were critically evaluated and compared with the established CCD technology, especially with respect to the above mentioned observations. Similarly, the desirable on-chip processing functionalities which would further enhance the object detection and image segmentation were identified. Finally, we simulated several observation scenarios for ground- and space-based sensor by assuming different observation and sensor properties. We will introduce the analyzed end-to-end simulations of the ground- and space-based strategies in order to investigate the orbit determination accuracy and its sensitivity which may result from different values for the frame-rate, pixel scale, astrometric and epoch registration accuracies. Two cases were simulated, a survey using a ground-based sensor to observe objects in LEO for surveillance applications, and a statistical survey with a space-based sensor orbiting in LEO observing small-size debris in LEO. The ground-based LEO survey uses a dynamical fence close to the Earth shadow a few hours after sunset. For the space-based scenario

  6. Improving human object recognition performance using video enhancement techniques (United States)

    Whitman, Lucy S.; Lewis, Colin; Oakley, John P.


    Atmospheric scattering causes significant degradation in the quality of video images, particularly when imaging over long distances. The principle problem is the reduction in contrast due to scattered light. It is known that when the scattering particles are not too large compared with the imaging wavelength (i.e. Mie scattering) then high spatial resolution information may be contained within a low-contrast image. Unfortunately this information is not easily perceived by a human observer, particularly when using a standard video monitor. A secondary problem is the difficulty of achieving a sharp focus since automatic focus techniques tend to fail in such conditions. Recently several commercial colour video processing systems have become available. These systems use various techniques to improve image quality in low contrast conditions whilst retaining colour content. These systems produce improvements in subjective image quality in some situations, particularly in conditions of haze and light fog. There is also some evidence that video enhancement leads to improved ATR performance when used as a pre-processing stage. Psychological literature indicates that low contrast levels generally lead to a reduction in the performance of human observers in carrying out simple visual tasks. The aim of this paper is to present the results of an empirical study on object recognition in adverse viewing conditions. The chosen visual task was vehicle number plate recognition at long ranges (500 m and beyond). Two different commercial video enhancement systems are evaluated using the same protocol. The results show an increase in effective range with some differences between the different enhancement systems.

  7. Improved Sensing with a Single Qubit (United States)

    Sekatski, P.; Skotiniotis, M.; Dür, W.


    We consider quantum metrology with arbitrary prior knowledge of the parameter. We demonstrate that a single sensing two-level system can act as a virtual multilevel system that offers increased sensitivity in a Bayesian single-shot metrology scenario, and that allows one to estimate (arbitrary) large parameter values by avoiding phase wraps. This is achieved by making use of additional degrees of freedom or auxiliary systems not participating in the sensing process. The joint system is manipulated by intermediate control operations in such a way that an effective Hamiltonian, with an arbitrary spectrum, is generated that mimics the spectrum of a multisystem interacting with the field. We show how to use additional internal degrees of freedom of a single trapped ion to achieve a high-sensitivity magnetic field sensor for fields with arbitrary prior knowledge.

  8. Improved parameter estimation for hydrological models using weighted object functions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stein, A.; Zaadnoordijk, W.J.


    This paper discusses the sensitivity of calibration of hydrological model parameters to different objective functions. Several functions are defined with weights depending upon the hydrological background. These are compared with an objective function based upon kriging. Calibration is applied to

  9. Single-trial multisensory memories affect later auditory and visual object discrimination


    Thelen Antonia; Talsma Durk; Murray Micah M.


    Multisensory memory traces established via single-trial exposures can impact subsequent visual object recognition. This impact appears to depend on the meaningfulness of the initial multisensory pairing, implying that multisensory exposures establish distinct object representations that are accessible during later unisensory processing. Multisensory contexts may be particularly effective in influencing auditory discrimination, given the purportedly inferior recognition memory in this sensory ...

  10. Single-component reflecting objective for low-temperature spectroscopy in the entire visible region

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fujiyoshi, Satoru; Fujiwara, Masanori; Kim, Changman; Matsushita, Michio; Oijen, Antoine M. van; Schmidt, Jan


    A single-component reflecting objective was constructed for low-temperature spectroscopy with optimal imaging and transmission properties at all visible wavelengths. The performance of the objective immersed in superfluid helium at a temperature of 1.5 K was tested by comparing dark-field images of

  11. Single-pixel non-imaging object recognition by means of Fourier spectrum acquisition (United States)

    Chen, Huichao; Shi, Jianhong; Liu, Xialin; Niu, Zhouzhou; Zeng, Guihua


    Single-pixel imaging has emerged over recent years as a novel imaging technique, which has significant application prospects. In this paper, we propose and experimentally demonstrate a scheme that can achieve single-pixel non-imaging object recognition by acquiring the Fourier spectrum. In an experiment, a four-step phase-shifting sinusoid illumination light is used to irradiate the object image, the value of the light intensity is measured with a single-pixel detection unit, and the Fourier coefficients of the object image are obtained by a differential measurement. The Fourier coefficients are first cast into binary numbers to obtain the hash value. We propose a new method of perceptual hashing algorithm, which is combined with a discrete Fourier transform to calculate the hash value. The hash distance is obtained by calculating the difference of the hash value between the object image and the contrast images. By setting an appropriate threshold, the object image can be quickly and accurately recognized. The proposed scheme realizes single-pixel non-imaging perceptual hashing object recognition by using fewer measurements. Our result might open a new path for realizing object recognition with non-imaging.

  12. Improving Single Event Effects Testing Through Software (United States)

    Banker, M. W.


    Radiation encountered in space environments can be damaging to microelectronics and potentially cause spacecraft failure. Single event effects (SEE) are a type of radiation effect that occur when an ion strikes a device. Single event gate rupture (SEGR) is a type of SEE that can cause failure in power transistors. Unlike other SEE rates in which a constant linear energy transfer (LET) can be used, SEGR rates sometimes require a non-uniform LET to be used to be accurate. A recent analysis shows that SEGR rates are most easily calculated when the environment is described as a stopping rate per unit volume for each ion species. Stopping rates in silicon for pertinent ions were calculated using the Stopping and Range of Ions in Matter (SRIM) software and CREME-MC software. A reference table was generated and can be used by others to calculate SEGR rates for a candidate device. Additionally, lasers can be used to simulate SEEs, providing more control and information at lower cost than heavy ion testing. The electron/hole pair generation rate from a laser pulse in a semiconductor can be related to the LET of an ion. MATLAB was used to generate a plot to easily make this comparison.

  13. Design of a box trainer for objective assessment of technical skills in single-port surgery

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Horeman, Tim; Sun, Siyu; Tuijthof, Gabrielle J. M.; Jansen, Frank William; Meijerink, Jeroen W. J. H. J.; Dankelman, Jenny


    Laparoscopic single-port (SP) surgery uses only a single entry point for all instruments. The approach of SP has been applied in multiple laparoscopic disciplines owing to its improved cosmetic result. However, in SP surgery, instrument movements are further restricted, resulting in increased

  14. Analysis of process parameters in surface grinding using single objective Taguchi and multi-objective grey relational grade

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Prashant J. Patil


    Full Text Available Close tolerance and good surface finish are achieved by means of grinding process. This study was carried out for multi-objective optimization of MQL grinding process parameters. Water based Al2O3 and CuO nanofluids of various concentrations are used as lubricant for MQL system. Grinding experiments were carried out on instrumented surface grinding machine. For experimentation purpose Taguchi's method was used. Important process parameters that affect the G ratio and surface finish in MQL grinding are depth of cut, type of lubricant, feed rate, grinding wheel speed, coolant flow rate, and nanoparticle size. Grinding performance was calculated by the measurement G ratio and surface finish. For improvement of grinding process a multi-objective process parameter optimization is performed by use of Taguchi based grey relational analysis. To identify most significant factor of process analysis of variance (ANOVA has been used.

  15. Convolutional Deep Belief Networks for Single-Cell/Object Tracking in Computational Biology and Computer Vision


    Zhong, Bineng; Pan, Shengnan; Zhang, Hongbo; Wang, Tian; Du, Jixiang; Chen, Duansheng; Cao, Liujuan


    In this paper, we propose deep architecture to dynamically learn the most discriminative features from data for both single-cell and object tracking in computational biology and computer vision. Firstly, the discriminative features are automatically learned via a convolutional deep belief network (CDBN). Secondly, we design a simple yet effective method to transfer features learned from CDBNs on the source tasks for generic purpose to the object tracking tasks using only limited amount of tra...

  16. Application of a single-objective, hybrid genetic algorithm approach to pharmacokinetic model building. (United States)

    Sherer, Eric A; Sale, Mark E; Pollock, Bruce G; Belani, Chandra P; Egorin, Merrill J; Ivy, Percy S; Lieberman, Jeffrey A; Manuck, Stephen B; Marder, Stephen R; Muldoon, Matthew F; Scher, Howard I; Solit, David B; Bies, Robert R


    A limitation in traditional stepwise population pharmacokinetic model building is the difficulty in handling interactions between model components. To address this issue, a method was previously introduced which couples NONMEM parameter estimation and model fitness evaluation to a single-objective, hybrid genetic algorithm for global optimization of the model structure. In this study, the generalizability of this approach for pharmacokinetic model building is evaluated by comparing (1) correct and spurious covariate relationships in a simulated dataset resulting from automated stepwise covariate modeling, Lasso methods, and single-objective hybrid genetic algorithm approaches to covariate identification and (2) information criteria values, model structures, convergence, and model parameter values resulting from manual stepwise versus single-objective, hybrid genetic algorithm approaches to model building for seven compounds. Both manual stepwise and single-objective, hybrid genetic algorithm approaches to model building were applied, blinded to the results of the other approach, for selection of the compartment structure as well as inclusion and model form of inter-individual and inter-occasion variability, residual error, and covariates from a common set of model options. For the simulated dataset, stepwise covariate modeling identified three of four true covariates and two spurious covariates; Lasso identified two of four true and 0 spurious covariates; and the single-objective, hybrid genetic algorithm identified three of four true covariates and one spurious covariate. For the clinical datasets, the Akaike information criterion was a median of 22.3 points lower (range of 470.5 point decrease to 0.1 point decrease) for the best single-objective hybrid genetic-algorithm candidate model versus the final manual stepwise model: the Akaike information criterion was lower by greater than 10 points for four compounds and differed by less than 10 points for three

  17. Objectivity

    CERN Document Server

    Daston, Lorraine


    Objectivity has a history, and it is full of surprises. In Objectivity, Lorraine Daston and Peter Galison chart the emergence of objectivity in the mid-nineteenth-century sciences--and show how the concept differs from its alternatives, truth-to-nature and trained judgment. This is a story of lofty epistemic ideals fused with workaday practices in the making of scientific images. From the eighteenth through the early twenty-first centuries, the images that reveal the deepest commitments of the empirical sciences--from anatomy to crystallography--are those featured in scientific atlases, the compendia that teach practitioners what is worth looking at and how to look at it. Galison and Daston use atlas images to uncover a hidden history of scientific objectivity and its rivals. Whether an atlas maker idealizes an image to capture the essentials in the name of truth-to-nature or refuses to erase even the most incidental detail in the name of objectivity or highlights patterns in the name of trained judgment is a...

  18. Evaluating the Use of Learning Objects for Improving Calculus Readiness (United States)

    Kay, Robin; Kletskin, Ilona


    Pre-calculus concepts such as working with functions and solving equations are essential for students to explore limits, rates of change, and integrals. Yet many students have a weak understanding of these key concepts which impedes performance in their first year university Calculus course. A series of online learning objects was developed to…

  19. Improving Object-Oriented Methods by using Fuzzy Logic

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Marcelloni, Francesco; Aksit, Mehmet


    Object-oriented methods create software artifacts through the application of a large number or rules. Rules are typically formulated in two-valued logic. There are a number of problems on how rules are defined and applied in current methods. First, two-valued logic can capture completely neither

  20. A new method for solving single and multi-objective fuzzy minimum ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Several authors have proposed different methods for solving fuzzy minimum cost flow (MCF) problems. In this paper, some single and multi-objective fuzzy MCF problems are chosen which cannot be solved by using any of the existing methods and a new method is proposed for solving such type of problems. The main ...

  1. Single-trial multisensory memories affect later auditory and visual object discrimination. (United States)

    Thelen, Antonia; Talsma, Durk; Murray, Micah M


    Multisensory memory traces established via single-trial exposures can impact subsequent visual object recognition. This impact appears to depend on the meaningfulness of the initial multisensory pairing, implying that multisensory exposures establish distinct object representations that are accessible during later unisensory processing. Multisensory contexts may be particularly effective in influencing auditory discrimination, given the purportedly inferior recognition memory in this sensory modality. The possibility of this generalization and the equivalence of effects when memory discrimination was being performed in the visual vs. auditory modality were at the focus of this study. First, we demonstrate that visual object discrimination is affected by the context of prior multisensory encounters, replicating and extending previous findings by controlling for the probability of multisensory contexts during initial as well as repeated object presentations. Second, we provide the first evidence that single-trial multisensory memories impact subsequent auditory object discrimination. Auditory object discrimination was enhanced when initial presentations entailed semantically congruent multisensory pairs and was impaired after semantically incongruent multisensory encounters, compared to sounds that had been encountered only in a unisensory manner. Third, the impact of single-trial multisensory memories upon unisensory object discrimination was greater when the task was performed in the auditory vs. visual modality. Fourth, there was no evidence for correlation between effects of past multisensory experiences on visual and auditory processing, suggestive of largely independent object processing mechanisms between modalities. We discuss these findings in terms of the conceptual short term memory (CSTM) model and predictive coding. Our results suggest differential recruitment and modulation of conceptual memory networks according to the sensory task at hand. Copyright

  2. Single Quantum Dot with Microlens and 3D-Printed Micro-objective as Integrated Bright Single-Photon Source. (United States)

    Fischbach, Sarah; Schlehahn, Alexander; Thoma, Alexander; Srocka, Nicole; Gissibl, Timo; Ristok, Simon; Thiele, Simon; Kaganskiy, Arsenty; Strittmatter, André; Heindel, Tobias; Rodt, Sven; Herkommer, Alois; Giessen, Harald; Reitzenstein, Stephan


    Integrated single-photon sources with high photon-extraction efficiency are key building blocks for applications in the field of quantum communications. We report on a bright single-photon source realized by on-chip integration of a deterministic quantum dot microlens with a 3D-printed multilens micro-objective. The device concept benefits from a sophisticated combination of in situ 3D electron-beam lithography to realize the quantum dot microlens and 3D femtosecond direct laser writing for creation of the micro-objective. In this way, we obtain a high-quality quantum device with broadband photon-extraction efficiency of (40 ± 4)% and high suppression of multiphoton emission events with g (2) (τ = 0) < 0.02. Our results highlight the opportunities that arise from tailoring the optical properties of quantum emitters using integrated optics with high potential for the further development of plug-and-play fiber-coupled single-photon sources.

  3. Plane-based optimization for 3D object reconstruction from single line drawings. (United States)

    Liu, Jianzhuang; Cao, Liangliang; Li, Zhenguo; Tang, Xiaoou


    In previous optimization-based methods of 3D planar-faced object reconstruction from single 2D line drawings, the missing depths of the vertices of a line drawing (and other parameters in some methods) are used as the variables of the objective functions. A 3D object with planar faces is derived by finding values for these variables that minimize the objective functions. These methods work well for simple objects with a small number N of variables. As N grows, however, it is very difficult for them to find expected objects. This is because with the nonlinear objective functions in a space of large dimension N, the search for optimal solutions can easily get trapped into local minima. In this paper, we use the parameters of the planes that pass through the planar faces of an object as the variables of the objective function. This leads to a set of linear constraints on the planes of the object, resulting in a much lower dimensional nullspace where optimization is easier to achieve. We prove that the dimension of this nullspace is exactly equal to the minimum number of vertex depths which define the 3D object. Since a practical line drawing is usually not an exact projection of a 3D object, we expand the nullspace to a larger space based on the singular value decomposition of the projection matrix of the line drawing. In this space, robust 3D reconstruction can be achieved. Compared with two most related methods, our method not only can reconstruct more complex 3D objects from 2D line drawings, but also is computationally more efficient.

  4. Effects of Implied Motion and Facing Direction on Positional Preferences in Single-Object Pictures. (United States)

    Palmer, Stephen E; Langlois, Thomas A


    Palmer, Gardner, and Wickens studied aesthetic preferences for pictures of single objects and found a strong inward bias: Right-facing objects were preferred left-of-center and left-facing objects right-of-center. They found no effect of object motion (people and cars showed the same inward bias as chairs and teapots), but the objects were not depicted as moving. Here we measured analogous inward biases with objects depicted as moving with an implied direction and speed by having participants drag-and-drop target objects into the most aesthetically pleasing position. In Experiment 1, human figures were shown diving or falling while moving forward or backward. Aesthetic biases were evident for both inward-facing and inward-moving figures, but the motion-based bias dominated so strongly that backward divers or fallers were preferred moving inward but facing outward. Experiment 2 investigated implied speed effects using images of humans, horses, and cars moving at different speeds (e.g., standing, walking, trotting, and galloping horses). Inward motion or facing biases were again present, and differences in their magnitude due to speed were evident. Unexpectedly, faster moving objects were generally preferred closer to frame center than slower moving objects. These results are discussed in terms of the combined effects of prospective, future-oriented biases, and retrospective, past-oriented biases.

  5. Object detection based on improved color and scale invariant features (United States)

    Chen, Mengyang; Men, Aidong; Fan, Peng; Yang, Bo


    A novel object detection method which combines color and scale invariant features is presented in this paper. The detection system mainly adopts the widely used framework of SIFT (Scale Invariant Feature Transform), which consists of both a keypoint detector and descriptor. Although SIFT has some impressive advantages, it is not only computationally expensive, but also vulnerable to color images. To overcome these drawbacks, we employ the local color kernel histograms and Haar Wavelet Responses to enhance the descriptor's distinctiveness and computational efficiency. Extensive experimental evaluations show that the method has better robustness and lower computation costs.

  6. Objective confirmation of asthma diagnosis improves medication adherence

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Backer, V; Stensen, L; Sverrild, A


    OBJECTIVE: The impact of diagnostic work-up in asthma management on medication redemption and probably also drug adherence is largely unknown, but we hypothesized that a confirmed diagnosis of asthma in a hospital-based out-patient clinic increases the willingness to subsequent medication...... redemption in a real life setting. METHODS: In a retrospective register-based study, 300 medical records of patients referred with possible asthma during one year were examined, of whom 171 had asthma (57%). One-year data on dispensed medicine was collected using the Danish Registry of Medicinal Product...

  7. Improved Space Object Observation Techniques Using CMOS Detectors (United States)

    Schildknecht, T.; Hinze, A.; Schlatter, P.; Silha, J.; Peltonen, J.; Santti, T.; Flohrer, T.


    CMOS-sensors, or in general Active Pixel Sensors (APS), are rapidly replacing CCDs in the consumer camera market. Due to significant technological advances during the past years these devices start to compete with CCDs also for demanding scientific imaging applications, in particular in the astronomy community. CMOS detectors offer a series of inherent advantages compared to CCDs, due to the structure of their basic pixel cells, which each contain their own amplifier and readout electronics. The most prominent advantages for space object observations are the extremely fast and flexible readout capabilities, feasibility for electronic shuttering and precise epoch registration, and the potential to perform image processing operations on-chip and in real-time. Presently applied and proposed optical observation strategies for space debris surveys and space surveillance applications had to be analyzed. The major design drivers were identified and potential benefits from using available and future CMOS sensors were assessed. The major challenges and design drivers for ground-based and space-based optical observation strategies have been analyzed. CMOS detector characteristics were critically evaluated and compared with the established CCD technology, especially with respect to the above mentioned observations. Similarly, the desirable on-chip processing functionalities which would further enhance the object detection and image segmentation were identified. Finally, the characteristics of a particular CMOS sensor available at the Zimmerwald observatory were analyzed by performing laboratory test measurements.

  8. Convolutional Deep Belief Networks for Single-Cell/Object Tracking in Computational Biology and Computer Vision. (United States)

    Zhong, Bineng; Pan, Shengnan; Zhang, Hongbo; Wang, Tian; Du, Jixiang; Chen, Duansheng; Cao, Liujuan


    In this paper, we propose deep architecture to dynamically learn the most discriminative features from data for both single-cell and object tracking in computational biology and computer vision. Firstly, the discriminative features are automatically learned via a convolutional deep belief network (CDBN). Secondly, we design a simple yet effective method to transfer features learned from CDBNs on the source tasks for generic purpose to the object tracking tasks using only limited amount of training data. Finally, to alleviate the tracker drifting problem caused by model updating, we jointly consider three different types of positive samples. Extensive experiments validate the robustness and effectiveness of the proposed method.

  9. Tabletop single-shot extreme ultraviolet Fourier transform holography of an extended object. (United States)

    Malm, Erik B; Monserud, Nils C; Brown, Christopher G; Wachulak, Przemyslaw W; Xu, Huiwen; Balakrishnan, Ganesh; Chao, Weilun; Anderson, Erik; Marconi, Mario C


    We demonstrate single and multi-shot Fourier transform holography with the use of a tabletop extreme ultraviolet laser. The reference wave was produced by a Fresnel zone plate with a central opening that allowed the incident beam to illuminate the sample directly. The high reference wave intensity allows for larger objects to be imaged compared to mask-based lensless Fourier transform holography techniques. We obtain a spatial resolution of 169 nm from a single laser pulse and a resolution of 128 nm from an accumulation of 20 laser pulses for an object ~11x11μm(2) in size. This experiment utilized a tabletop extreme ultraviolet laser that produces a highly coherent ~1.2 ns laser pulse at 46.9 nm wavelength.

  10. Single parent status and children's objectively measured level of physical activity. (United States)

    Singhammer, John; Ried-Larsen, Mathias; Møller, Niels Christian; Lund-Kristensen, Peter; Froberg, Karsten; Andersen, Lars Bo

    Single-parent family status has been investigated as a possible psychosocial determinant of children's level of physical activity (PA)-although with mixed and inconclusive results. Prevailing evidence of the importance of two-parent family status as a resource for children's PA is based on a mix of subjective and objective measurements of PA. Objectives: To investigate if the level of PA among children living with a single parent was lower compared to children living with two parents by means of a meta-analysis of published and unpublished studies. We restricted our analysis to studies with objective measurements of PA. Data sources: The databases, Social Science Citation Index, PsycINFO, PubMed, and EBSCO were searched (1987-2013). Study eligibility criteria: Observational studies comparing objectively measured PA between single-parent children and children from two-parent families. Study appraisal and synthesis methods: We used guidelines from the Cochrane Handbook of Systematic Reviews of Interventions and a modified version of the Newcastle-Ottawa Scale overall to assess the quality of the included studies. We refrained from calculation of summary scores. Twelve studies met the following inclusion criteria of which six were unpublished: (a) child age (6-18 years) and (b) objectively measured level of PA. Meta-analysis revealed pooled estimates of -0.01 for boys (95 % CI -0.04-0.03, p  = 0.77, I 2  = 6.5 %, p  = 0.38) and 0.01 for girls (95 % CI -0.03-0.04, p  = 0.62, I 2  = 21.0 %, p  = 0.24), respectively. Estimates show no differences in objectively measured physical activity between children living in single-parent families compared to children living with two parents. Analyses investigating seven potential moderators did not yield any statistical significant effect size estimates. No evidence of heterogeneity between studies was observed. Limitations: Retrieved articles were assessed by several of the authors. Blinding of the

  11. Entanglement of a Single Spin-1 Object: An Example of Ubiquitous Entanglement


    Binicioglu, Sinem; Can, M. Ali; Klyachko, Alexander A.; Shumovsky, Alexander S.


    Using a single spin-1 object as an example, we discuss a recent approach to quantum entanglement. The key idea of the approach consists in presetting of basic observables in the very definition of quantum system. Specification of basic observables defines the dynamic symmetry of the system. Entangled states of the system are then interpreted as states with maximal amount of uncertainty of all basic observables. The approach gives purely physical picture of entanglement. In particular, it sepa...

  12. Objective evaluation of improvement in optic neuropathy following radiation therapy for thyroid eye disease

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rush, Stephen; Winterkorn, Jacqueline; Zak, Rochelle


    Purpose: While the literature supports the use of radiation therapy for thyroid eye disease, it does not sufficiently describe in detail the results of radiation therapy for optic neuropathy associated with thyroid eye disease. The objective of this study is to quantify the changes in parameters of optic neuropathy after orbital irradiation for thyroid eye disease. Methods and Materials: Twelve consecutive patients with optic neuropathy from thyroid eye disease were followed by a single neuro-ophthalmology practice and treated by one radiation oncologist with radiation therapy from 1991 through 1995. All cases were prospectively followed for visual acuity, color vision, mean deviation, and/or foveal sensitivity and afferent pupillary defect. All patients received 2000 cGy in 10 fractions with megavoltage irradiation to the orbits. Results: Ten of 12 patients were evaluated for follow-up (one moved out of this country and one had a stroke, which confounded interpretation of examination results). An analysis was performed retrospectively while treatment and evaluation remained uniform. Five men and five women formed the basis of this study with a median age of 60 years (35-76 years). Nineteen eyes were evaluated for thyroid optic neuropathy. Improvement in optic nerve function occurred in eight of ten patients. Improvement was seen either during radiotherapy or within 2 weeks of completion. No long-term adverse effects were noted. Conclusion: This study objectively demonstrates improvement in optic neuropathy from radiation therapy for thyroid eye disease

  13. A Single Unexpected Change in Target- but Not Distractor Motion Impairs Multiple Object Tracking

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hauke S. Meyerhoff


    Full Text Available Recent research addresses the question whether motion information of multiple objects contributes to maintaining a selection of objects across a period of motion. Here, we investigate whether target and/or distractor motion information is used during attentive tracking. We asked participants to track four objects and changed either the motion direction of targets, the motion direction of distractors, neither, or both during a brief flash in the middle of a tracking interval. We observed that a single direction change of targets is sufficient to impair tracking performance. In contrast, changing the motion direction of distractors had no effect on performance. This indicates that target- but not distractor motion information is evaluated during tracking.

  14. High-throughput imaging of self-luminous objects through a single optical fibre. (United States)

    Barankov, Roman; Mertz, Jerome


    Imaging through a single optical fibre offers attractive possibilities in many applications such as micro-endoscopy or remote sensing. However, the direct transmission of an image through an optical fibre is difficult because spatial information is scrambled upon propagation. We demonstrate an image transmission strategy where spatial information is first converted to spectral information. Our strategy is based on a principle of spread-spectrum encoding, borrowed from wireless communications, wherein object pixels are converted into distinct spectral codes that span the full bandwidth of the object spectrum. Image recovery is performed by numerical inversion of the detected spectrum at the fibre output. We provide a simple demonstration of spread-spectrum encoding using Fabry-Perot etalons. Our technique enables the two-dimensional imaging of self-luminous (that is, incoherent) objects with high throughput in principle independent of pixel number. Moreover, it is insensitive to fibre bending, contains no moving parts and opens the possibility of extreme miniaturization.

  15. Design of a hybrid double-sideband/single-sideband (schlieren) objective aperture suitable for electron microscopy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Buijsse, Bart; Laarhoven, Frank M.H.M. van [FEI Company, PO Box 80066, 5600 KA Eindhoven (Netherlands); Schmid, Andreas K.; Cambie, Rossana; Cabrini, Stefano; Jin, Jian [Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720 (United States); Glaeser, Robert M., E-mail: [Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720 (United States)


    A novel design is described for an aperture that blocks a half-plane of the electron diffraction pattern out to a desired scattering angle, and then - except for a narrow support beam - transmits all of the scattered electrons beyond that angle. Our proposed tulip-shaped design is thus a hybrid between the single-sideband (ssb) aperture, which blocks a full half-plane of the diffraction pattern, and the conventional (i.e. fully open) double-sideband (dsb) aperture. The benefits of this hybrid design include the fact that such an aperture allows one to obtain high-contrast images of weak-phase objects with the objective lens set to Scherzer defocus. We further demonstrate that such apertures can be fabricated from thin-foil materials by milling with a focused ion beam (FIB), and that such apertures are fully compatible with the requirements of imaging out to a resolution of at least 0.34 nm. As is known from earlier work with single-sideband apertures, however, the edge of such an aperture can introduce unwanted, electrostatic phase shifts due to charging. The principal requirement for using such an aperture in a routine data-collection mode is thus to discover appropriate materials, protocols for fabrication and processing and conditions of use such that the hybrid aperture remains free of charging over long periods of time. -- Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer New objective-aperture design is proposed for imaging weak-phase objects. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Design produces single-sideband contrast at low spatial frequencies. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Design also retains Scherzer-defocus phase contrast at higher resolution. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Proof-of-concept results are presented for microfabricated apertures. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Charging of such apertures during use remains an experimental challenge.

  16. Improving package structure of object-oriented software using multi-objective optimization and weighted class connections

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)



    Full Text Available The software maintenance activities performed without following the original design decisions about the package structure usually deteriorate the quality of software modularization, leading to decay of the quality of the system. One of the main reasons for such structural deterioration is inappropriate grouping of source code classes in software packages. To improve such grouping/modular-structure, previous researchers formulated the software remodularization problem as an optimization problem and solved it using search-based meta-heuristic techniques. These optimization approaches aimed at improving the quality metrics values of the structure without considering the original package design decisions, often resulting into a totally new software modularization. The entirely changed software modularization becomes costly to realize as well as difficult to understand for the developers/maintainers. To alleviate this issue, we propose a multi-objective optimization approach to improve the modularization quality of an object-oriented system with minimum possible movement of classes between existing packages of original software modularization. The optimization is performed using NSGA-II, a widely-accepted multi-objective evolutionary algorithm. In order to ensure minimum modification of original package structure, a new approach of computing class relations using weighted strengths has been proposed here. The weights of relations among different classes are computed on the basis of the original package structure. A new objective function has been formulated using these weighted class relations. This objective function drives the optimization process toward better modularization quality simultaneously ensuring preservation of original structure. To evaluate the results of the proposed approach, a series of experiments are conducted over four real-worlds and two random software applications. The experimental results clearly indicate the effectiveness

  17. Multi-Objective Optimization of a Turbofan for an Advanced, Single-Aisle Transport (United States)

    Berton, Jeffrey J.; Guynn, Mark D.


    Considerable interest surrounds the design of the next generation of single-aisle commercial transports in the Boeing 737 and Airbus A320 class. Aircraft designers will depend on advanced, next-generation turbofan engines to power these airplanes. The focus of this study is to apply single- and multi-objective optimization algorithms to the conceptual design of ultrahigh bypass turbofan engines for this class of aircraft, using NASA s Subsonic Fixed Wing Project metrics as multidisciplinary objectives for optimization. The independent design variables investigated include three continuous variables: sea level static thrust, wing reference area, and aerodynamic design point fan pressure ratio, and four discrete variables: overall pressure ratio, fan drive system architecture (i.e., direct- or gear-driven), bypass nozzle architecture (i.e., fixed- or variable geometry), and the high- and low-pressure compressor work split. Ramp weight, fuel burn, noise, and emissions are the parameters treated as dependent objective functions. These optimized solutions provide insight to the ultrahigh bypass engine design process and provide information to NASA program management to help guide its technology development efforts.

  18. Optimization of multi-objective micro-grid based on improved particle swarm optimization algorithm (United States)

    Zhang, Jian; Gan, Yang


    The paper presents a multi-objective optimal configuration model for independent micro-grid with the aim of economy and environmental protection. The Pareto solution set can be obtained by solving the multi-objective optimization configuration model of micro-grid with the improved particle swarm algorithm. The feasibility of the improved particle swarm optimization algorithm for multi-objective model is verified, which provides an important reference for multi-objective optimization of independent micro-grid.

  19. Numerical correction of anti-symmetric aberrations in single HRTEM images of weakly scattering 2D-objects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lehtinen, Ossi; Geiger, Dorin; Lee, Zhongbo; Whitwick, Michael Brian; Chen, Ming-Wei; Kis, Andras; Kaiser, Ute


    Here, we present a numerical post-processing method for removing the effect of anti-symmetric residual aberrations in high-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM) images of weakly scattering 2D-objects. The method is based on applying the same aberrations with the opposite phase to the Fourier transform of the recorded image intensity and subsequently inverting the Fourier transform. We present the theoretical justification of the method, and its verification based on simulated images in the case of low-order anti-symmetric aberrations. Ultimately the method is applied to experimental hardware aberration-corrected HRTEM images of single-layer graphene and MoSe 2 resulting in images with strongly reduced residual low-order aberrations, and consequently improved interpretability. Alternatively, this method can be used to estimate by trial and error the residual anti-symmetric aberrations in HRTEM images of weakly scattering objects

  20. Barack Obama Blindness (BOB): Absence of Visual Awareness to a Single Object. (United States)

    Persuh, Marjan; Melara, Robert D


    In two experiments, we evaluated whether a perceiver's prior expectations could alone obliterate his or her awareness of a salient visual stimulus. To establish expectancy, observers first made a demanding visual discrimination on each of three baseline trials. Then, on a fourth, critical trial, a single, salient and highly visible object appeared in full view at the center of the visual field and in the absence of any competing visual input. Surprisingly, fully half of the participants were unaware of the solitary object in front of their eyes. Dramatically, observers were blind even when the only stimulus on display was the face of U.S. President Barack Obama. We term this novel, counterintuitive phenomenon, Barack Obama Blindness (BOB). Employing a method that rules out putative memory effects by probing awareness immediately after presentation of the critical stimulus, we demonstrate that the BOB effect is a true failure of conscious vision.

  1. Perception of animacy from the motion of a single sound object

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Rasmus Høll; Vuust, Peter; Wallentin, Mikkel


    Research in the visual modality has shown that the presence of certain dynamics in the motion of an object has a strong effect on whether or not the entity is perceived as animate. Cues for animacy are, among others, self-propelled motion and direction changes that are seemingly not caused...... by entities external to, or in direct contact with, the moving object. The present study aimed to extend this research into the auditory domain by determining if similar dynamics could influence the perceived animacy of a sound source. In two experiments, participants were presented with single, synthetically...... generated “mosquito” sounds moving along trajectories in space, and asked to rate how certain they were that each sound emitting entity was alive. At a random point on a linear motion trajectory, the sound source would deviate from its initial path and speed. Results confirm findings from the visual domain...

  2. Modafinil improves methamphetamine-induced object recognition deficits and restores prefrontal cortex ERK signaling in mice. (United States)

    González, Betina; Raineri, Mariana; Cadet, Jean Lud; García-Rill, Edgar; Urbano, Francisco J; Bisagno, Veronica


    Chronic use of methamphetamine (METH) leads to long-lasting cognitive dysfunction in humans and in animal models. Modafinil is a wake-promoting compound approved for the treatment of sleeping disorders. It is also prescribed off label to treat METH dependence. In the present study, we investigated whether modafinil could improve cognitive deficits induced by sub-chronic METH treatment in mice by measuring visual retention in a Novel Object Recognition (NOR) task. After sub-chronic METH treatment (1 mg/kg, once a day for 7 days), mice performed the NOR task, which consisted of habituation to the object recognition arena (5 min a day, 3 consecutive days), training session (2 equal objects, 10 min, day 4), and a retention session (1 novel object, 5 min, day 5). One hour before the training session, mice were given a single dose of modafinil (30 or 90 mg/kg). METH-treated mice showed impairments in visual memory retention, evidenced by equal preference of familiar and novel objects during the retention session. The lower dose of modafinil (30 mg/kg) had no effect on visual retention scores in METH-treated mice, while the higher dose (90 mg/kg) rescued visual memory retention to control values. We also measured extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) phosphorylation in medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC), hippocampus, and nucleus accumbens (NAc) of METH- and vehicle-treated mice that received modafinil 1 h before exposure to novel objects in the training session, compared to mice placed in the arena without objects. Elevated ERK phosphorylation was found in the mPFC of vehicle-treated mice, but not in METH-treated mice, exposed to objects. The lower dose of modafinil had no effect on ERK phosphorylation in METH-treated mice, while 90 mg/kg modafinil treatment restored the ERK phosphorylation induced by novelty in METH-treated mice to values comparable to controls. We found neither a novelty nor treatment effect on ERK phosphorylation in hippocampus or NAc of vehicle

  3. From Single- to Multi-Objective Auto-Tuning of Programs: Advantages and Implications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan Durillo


    Full Text Available Automatic tuning (auto-tuning of software has emerged in recent years as a promising method that tries to automatically adapt the behaviour of a program to attain different performance objectives on a given computing system. This method is gaining momentum due to the increasing complexity of modern multicore-based hardware architectures. Many solutions to auto-tuning have been explored ranging from simple random search to more sophisticate methods like machine learning or evolutionary search. To this day, it is still unclear whether these approaches are general enough to encompass all the complexities of the problem (e.g. search space, parameters influencing the search space, input data sensitivity, etc., or which approach is best suited for a given problem. Furthermore, the growing interest in auto-tuning a program for several objectives is increasing this confusion even further. The goal of this paper is to formally describe the problem addressed by auto-tuning programs and review existing solutions highlighting the advantages and drawbacks of different techniques for single-objective as well as multi-objective auto-tuning approaches.

  4. Objective 1: Extend Life, Improve Performance, and Maintain Safety of the Current Fleet; Implementation Plan

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Youngblood, Robert


    Nuclear power has reliably and economically contributed almost 20% of electrical generation in the United States over the past two decades. It remains the single largest contributor (more than 70%) of non-greenhouse-gas-emitting electric power generation in the United States. By the year 2030, domestic demand for electrical energy is expected to grow to levels of 16 to 36% higher than 2007 levels. At the same time, most currently operating nuclear power plants will begin reaching the end of their 60 year operating licenses. Figure E 1 shows projected nuclear energy contribution to the domestic generating capacity. If current operating nuclear power plants do not operate beyond 60 years, the total fraction of generated electrical energy from nuclear power will begin to decline - even with the expected addition of new nuclear generating capacity. The oldest commercial plants in the United States reached their 40th anniversary in 2009. The U.S. Department of Energy Office of Nuclear Energy's Research and Development (R and D) Roadmap has organized its activities in accordance with four objectives that ensure nuclear energy remains a compelling and viable energy option for the United States. The objectives are as follows: (1) develop technologies and other solutions that can improve the reliability, sustain the safety, and extend the life of the current reactors; (2) develop improvements in the affordability of new reactors to enable nuclear energy to help meet the Administration's energy security and climate change goals; (3) develop sustainable nuclear fuel cycles; and (4) understand and minimize risks of nuclear proliferation and terrorism. The Light Water Reactor Sustainability (LWRS) Program is the primary programmatic activity that addresses Objective 1. This document describes how Objective 1 and the LWRS Program will be implemented. The existing U.S. nuclear fleet has a remarkable safety and performance record and today accounts for 70% of the low greenhouse

  5. Objective 1: Extend Life, Improve Performance, and Maintain Safety of the Current Fleet Implementation Plan

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Robert Youngblood


    Nuclear power has reliably and economically contributed almost 20% of electrical generation in the United States over the past two decades. It remains the single largest contributor (more than 70%) of non-greenhouse-gas-emitting electric power generation in the United States. By the year 2030, domestic demand for electrical energy is expected to grow to levels of 16 to 36% higher than 2007 levels. At the same time, most currently operating nuclear power plants will begin reaching the end of their 60 year operating licenses. Figure E 1 shows projected nuclear energy contribution to the domestic generating capacity. If current operating nuclear power plants do not operate beyond 60 years, the total fraction of generated electrical energy from nuclear power will begin to decline—even with the expected addition of new nuclear generating capacity. The oldest commercial plants in the United States reached their 40th anniversary in 2009. The U.S. Department of Energy Office of Nuclear Energy’s Research and Development (R&D) Roadmap has organized its activities in accordance with four objectives that ensure nuclear energy remains a compelling and viable energy option for the United States. The objectives are as follows: (1) develop technologies and other solutions that can improve the reliability, sustain the safety, and extend the life of the current reactors; (2) develop improvements in the affordability of new reactors to enable nuclear energy to help meet the Administration’s energy security and climate change goals; (3) develop sustainable nuclear fuel cycles; and (4) understand and minimize risks of nuclear proliferation and terrorism. The Light Water Reactor Sustainability (LWRS) Program is the primary programmatic activity that addresses Objective 1. This document describes how Objective 1 and the LWRS Program will be implemented. The existing U.S. nuclear fleet has a remarkable safety and performance record and today accounts for 70% of the low greenhouse

  6. Objective 1: Extend Life, Improve Performance, and Maintain Safety of the Current Fleet Implementation Plan

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Robert Youngblood


    Nuclear power has reliably and economically contributed almost 20% of electrical generation in the United States over the past two decades. It remains the single largest contributor (more than 70%) of non-greenhouse-gas-emitting electric power generation in the United States. By the year 2030, domestic demand for electrical energy is expected to grow to levels of 16 to 36% higher than 2007 levels. At the same time, most currently operating nuclear power plants will begin reaching the end of their 60 year operating licenses. Figure E 1 shows projected nuclear energy contribution to the domestic generating capacity. If current operating nuclear power plants do not operate beyond 60 years, the total fraction of generated electrical energy from nuclear power will begin to decline—even with the expected addition of new nuclear generating capacity. The oldest commercial plants in the United States reached their 40th anniversary in 2009. The U.S. Department of Energy Office of Nuclear Energy’s Research and Development (R&D) Roadmap has organized its activities in accordance with four objectives that ensure nuclear energy remains a compelling and viable energy option for the United States. The objectives are as follows: (1) develop technologies and other solutions that can improve the reliability, sustain the safety, and extend the life of the current reactors; (2) develop improvements in the affordability of new reactors to enable nuclear energy to help meet the Administration’s energy security and climate change goals; (3) develop sustainable nuclear fuel cycles; and (4) understand and minimize risks of nuclear proliferation and terrorism. The Light Water Reactor Sustainability (LWRS) Program is the primary programmatic activity that addresses Objective 1. This document describes how Objective 1 and the LWRS Program will be implemented. The existing U.S. nuclear fleet has a remarkable safety and performance record and today accounts for 70% of the low greenhouse

  7. Improvement of Torque Production in Single-Phase Induction Motors ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Existing single phase induction motors exhibit low starting torque. Moreover, during accelerating time and at steady state, they produce a significant level of torque pulsations which gives rise to noise and vibration in the machine. As part of efforts to mitigate these problems, a performance improvement strategy using a PWM ...

  8. Improved PLL structures for single-phase grid inverters

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ciobotaru, Mihai; Teodorescu, Remus; Blaabjerg, Frede


    of the reference signals. This paper presents two improved phase-locked-loop (PLL) methods for single-phase grid connected systems. The investigated PLL methods are based on a transport delay method and an inverse Park transformation method. The improvements in the case of using the delay-based PLL are: non......-frequency dependent and better filtering of the harmonics. For the other investigated PLL method based on inverse Park transformation the improvement consists of better filtering of the harmonics. Experimental results validate the effectiveness of the two proposed methods....

  9. Time-domain single-source integral equations for analyzing scattering from homogeneous penetrable objects

    KAUST Repository

    Valdés, Felipe


    Single-source time-domain electric-and magnetic-field integral equations for analyzing scattering from homogeneous penetrable objects are presented. Their temporal discretization is effected by using shifted piecewise polynomial temporal basis functions and a collocation testing procedure, thus allowing for a marching-on-in-time (MOT) solution scheme. Unlike dual-source formulations, single-source equations involve space-time domain operator products, for which spatial discretization techniques developed for standalone operators do not apply. Here, the spatial discretization of the single-source time-domain integral equations is achieved by using the high-order divergence-conforming basis functions developed by Graglia alongside the high-order divergence-and quasi curl-conforming (DQCC) basis functions of Valdés The combination of these two sets allows for a well-conditioned mapping from div-to curl-conforming function spaces that fully respects the space-mapping properties of the space-time operators involved. Numerical results corroborate the fact that the proposed procedure guarantees accuracy and stability of the MOT scheme. © 2012 IEEE.

  10. High resolution tomography of objects with access to a single side

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Thoe, R.S.


    The author is developing a technique which will enable one to obtain high-contrast, high-spatial resolution, three-dimensional images in opaque objects. The only constraint will be the radiation source and detector(s) will be located on the same side of the object. The goal is to obtain images with a spatial resolution of {approximately}1 mm at depths of 10 mm and {approximately}3 mm at depths of 30 mm in materials of moderate density (brass, steel, etc.). The author`s technique uses a highly-collimated beam of monochromatic gamma rays and a slit collimated high-resolution, high-efficiency, coaxial germanium spectrometer. If the geometry is well known, the spectrum of Compton scattered radiation can be used to map out the density as a function of depth. By scanning the object in two dimensions, a full three-dimensional image of the electron density can be reconstructed. The resolution is dependent on the incident beam collimation and the energy resolution of the spectrometer. For his system, the author anticipates a resolution of about 1 mm{sup 3}. The apparatus, reconstruction algorithms and current data verifying his predictions are presented here. Also included are the details on how the system can be modified to increase the efficiency by over two orders of magnitude. This system will have several advantages over conventional transmission radiographic and tomographic systems: (1) It requires the use of a high specific intensity isotopic source of modest activity (< 100 mCi). (2) It requires only a single high-resolution spectrometer used in conjunction with an array of low-resolution detectors (all readily available). (3) It allows for the recording of three-dimensional images of object even though both detector and source are located on the same side of the object.

  11. A multi-objective approach to improve SWAT model calibration in alpine catchments (United States)

    Tuo, Ye; Marcolini, Giorgia; Disse, Markus; Chiogna, Gabriele


    Multi-objective hydrological model calibration can represent a valuable solution to reduce model equifinality and parameter uncertainty. The Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) model is widely applied to investigate water quality and water management issues in alpine catchments. However, the model calibration is generally based on discharge records only, and most of the previous studies have defined a unique set of snow parameters for an entire basin. Only a few studies have considered snow observations to validate model results or have taken into account the possible variability of snow parameters for different subbasins. This work presents and compares three possible calibration approaches. The first two procedures are single-objective calibration procedures, for which all parameters of the SWAT model were calibrated according to river discharge alone. Procedures I and II differ from each other by the assumption used to define snow parameters: The first approach assigned a unique set of snow parameters to the entire basin, whereas the second approach assigned different subbasin-specific sets of snow parameters to each subbasin. The third procedure is a multi-objective calibration, in which we considered snow water equivalent (SWE) information at two different spatial scales (i.e. subbasin and elevation band), in addition to discharge measurements. We tested these approaches in the Upper Adige river basin where a dense network of snow depth measurement stations is available. Only the set of parameters obtained with this multi-objective procedure provided an acceptable prediction of both river discharge and SWE. These findings offer the large community of SWAT users a strategy to improve SWAT modeling in alpine catchments.

  12. From tomography to full-waveform inversion with a single objective function

    KAUST Repository

    Alkhalifah, Tariq Ali


    In full-waveform inversion (FWI), a gradient-based update of the velocity model requires an initial velocity that produces synthetic data that are within a half-cycle, everywhere, from the field data. Such initial velocity models are usually extracted from migration velocity analysis or traveltime tomography, among other means, and are not guaranteed to adhere to the FWI requirements for an initial velocity model. As such, we evaluated an objective function based on the misfit in the instantaneous traveltime between the observed and modeled data. This phase-based attribute of the wavefield, along with its phase unwrapping characteristics, provided a frequency-dependent traveltime function that was easy to use and quantify, especially compared to conventional phase representation. With a strong Laplace damping of the modeled, potentially low-frequency, data along the time axis, this attribute admitted a first-arrival traveltime that could be compared with picked ones from the observed data, such as in wave equation tomography (WET). As we relax the damping on the synthetic and observed data, the objective function measures the misfit in the phase, however unwrapped. It, thus, provided a single objective function for a natural transition from WET to FWI. A Marmousi example demonstrated the effectiveness of the approach.

  13. Single and multiple objective biomass-to-biofuel supply chain optimization considering environmental impacts (United States)

    Valles Sosa, Claudia Evangelina

    Bioenergy has become an important alternative source of energy to alleviate the reliance on petroleum energy. Bioenergy offers diminishing climate change by reducing Green House Gas Emissions, as well as providing energy security and enhancing rural development. The Energy Independence and Security Act mandate the use of 21 billion gallons of advanced biofuels including 16 billion gallons of cellulosic biofuels by the year 2022. It is clear that Biomass can make a substantial contribution to supply future energy demand in a sustainable way. However, the supply of sustainable energy is one of the main challenges that mankind will face over the coming decades. For instance, many logistical challenges will be faced in order to provide an efficient and reliable supply of quality feedstock to biorefineries. 700 million tons of biomass will be required to be sustainably delivered to biorefineries annually to meet the projected use of biofuels by the year of 2022. Approaching this complex logistic problem as a multi-commodity network flow structure, the present work proposes the use of a genetic algorithm as a single objective optimization problem that considers the maximization of profit and the present work also proposes the use of a Multiple Objective Evolutionary Algorithm to simultaneously maximize profit while minimizing global warming potential. Most transportation optimization problems available in the literature have mostly considered the maximization of profit or the minimization of total travel time as potential objectives to be optimized. However, on this research work, we take a more conscious and sustainable approach for this logistic problem. Planners are increasingly expected to adopt a multi-disciplinary approach, especially due to the rising importance of environmental stewardship. The role of a transportation planner and designer is shifting from simple economic analysis to promoting sustainability through the integration of environmental objectives. To

  14. Subjective and Objective Quality Assessment of Single-Channel Speech Separation Algorithms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mowlaee, Pejman; Saeidi, Rahim; Christensen, Mads Græsbøll


    Previous studies on performance evaluation of single-channel speech separation (SCSS) algorithms mostly focused on automatic speech recognition (ASR) accuracy as their performance measure. Assessing the separated signals by different metrics other than this has the benefit that the results...... are expected to carry on to other applications beyond ASR. In this paper, in addition to conventional speech quality metrics (PESQ and SNRloss), we also evaluate the separation systems output using different source separation metrics: blind source separation evaluation (BSS EVAL) and perceptual evaluation...... that PESQ and PEASS quality metrics predict well the subjective quality of separated signals obtained by the separation systems. From the results it is observed that the short-time objective intelligibility (STOI) measure predict the speech intelligibility results....

  15. Energetic and exergetic Improvement of geothermal single flash cycle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Navid Nazari


    Full Text Available This paper presents a detailed analysis of a new method for improving energetic and exergetic efficiencies of single flash cycle. The thermodynamic process of the new method consists of extracting a fraction of hot wellhead geothermal brine for the purpose of superheating saturated steam entering the turbine. Computer programming scripts were developed and optimized based on mathematical proposed models for the different components of the systems. The operating parameters such as separator temperature, geofluid wellhead enthalpy and geothermal source temperature are varied to investigate their effects on both net power output and turbine exhaust quality of the systems. Also, full exergy assessment was performed for the new design. The results of separator temperature optimization revealed that specific net power output of the new design can be boosted up to 8% and turbine exhaust quality can be diminished up to 50% as compared to common single flash cycle. In addition, for wells with higher discharge enthalpy, superheating process improve specific net power output even up to 10%. Finally, it was observed that the overall system exergy efficiency was approximately raised 3%. Article History: Received January 5th 2016; Received in revised form June 25th 2016; Accepted July 3rd 2016; Available online How to Cite This Article: Nazari, N. and Porkhial, S. (2016. Energetic and Exergetic Improvement of Geothermal Single Flash Cycle. Int. Journal of Renewable Energy Development, 5(2,129-138. 

  16. 3D Imaging with a Single-Aperture 3-mm Objective Lens: Concept, Fabrication and Test (United States)

    Korniski, Ron; Bae, Sam Y.; Shearn, Mike; Manohara, Harish; Shahinian, Hrayr


    There are many advantages to minimally invasive surgery (MIS). An endoscope is the optical system of choice by the surgeon for MIS. The smaller the incision or opening made to perform the surgery, the smaller the optical system needed. For minimally invasive neurological and skull base surgeries the openings are typically 10-mm in diameter (dime sized) or less. The largest outside diameter (OD) endoscope used is 4mm. A significant drawback to endoscopic MIS is that it only provides a monocular view of the surgical site thereby lacking depth information for the surgeon. A stereo view would provide the surgeon instantaneous depth information of the surroundings within the field of view, a significant advantage especially during brain surgery. Providing 3D imaging in an endoscopic objective lens system presents significant challenges because of the tight packaging constraints. This paper presents a promising new technique for endoscopic 3D imaging that uses a single lens system with complementary multi-bandpass filters (CMBFs), and describes the proof-of-concept demonstrations performed to date validating the technique. These demonstrations of the technique have utilized many commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) components including the ones used in the endoscope objective.

  17. Perception of Animacy from the Motion of a Single Sound Object. (United States)

    Nielsen, Rasmus Høll; Vuust, Peter; Wallentin, Mikkel


    Research in the visual modality has shown that the presence of certain dynamics in the motion of an object has a strong effect on whether or not the entity is perceived as animate. Cues for animacy are, among others, self-propelled motion and direction changes that are seemingly not caused by entities external to, or in direct contact with, the moving object. The present study aimed to extend this research into the auditory domain by determining if similar dynamics could influence the perceived animacy of a sound source. In two experiments, participants were presented with single, synthetically generated 'mosquito' sounds moving along trajectories in space, and asked to rate how certain they were that each sound-emitting entity was alive. At a random point on a linear motion trajectory, the sound source would deviate from its initial path and speed. Results confirm findings from the visual domain that a change in the velocity of motion is positively correlated with perceived animacy, and changes in direction were found to influence animacy judgment as well. This suggests that an ability to facilitate and sustain self-movement is perceived as a living quality not only in the visual domain, but in the auditory domain as well. © 2015 SAGE Publications.

  18. A split-optimization approach for obtaining multiple solutions in single-objective process parameter optimization. (United States)

    Rajora, Manik; Zou, Pan; Yang, Yao Guang; Fan, Zhi Wen; Chen, Hung Yi; Wu, Wen Chieh; Li, Beizhi; Liang, Steven Y


    It can be observed from the experimental data of different processes that different process parameter combinations can lead to the same performance indicators, but during the optimization of process parameters, using current techniques, only one of these combinations can be found when a given objective function is specified. The combination of process parameters obtained after optimization may not always be applicable in actual production or may lead to undesired experimental conditions. In this paper, a split-optimization approach is proposed for obtaining multiple solutions in a single-objective process parameter optimization problem. This is accomplished by splitting the original search space into smaller sub-search spaces and using GA in each sub-search space to optimize the process parameters. Two different methods, i.e., cluster centers and hill and valley splitting strategy, were used to split the original search space, and their efficiency was measured against a method in which the original search space is split into equal smaller sub-search spaces. The proposed approach was used to obtain multiple optimal process parameter combinations for electrochemical micro-machining. The result obtained from the case study showed that the cluster centers and hill and valley splitting strategies were more efficient in splitting the original search space than the method in which the original search space is divided into smaller equal sub-search spaces.

  19. Dynamic Non-Rigid Objects Reconstruction with a Single RGB-D Sensor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sen Wang


    Full Text Available This paper deals with the 3D reconstruction problem for dynamic non-rigid objects with a single RGB-D sensor. It is a challenging task as we consider the almost inevitable accumulation error issue in some previous sequential fusion methods and also the possible failure of surface tracking in a long sequence. Therefore, we propose a global non-rigid registration framework and tackle the drifting problem via an explicit loop closure. Our novel scheme starts with a fusion step to get multiple partial scans from the input sequence, followed by a pairwise non-rigid registration and loop detection step to obtain correspondences between neighboring partial pieces and those pieces that form a loop. Then, we perform a global registration procedure to align all those pieces together into a consistent canonical space as guided by those matches that we have established. Finally, our proposed model-update step helps fixing potential misalignments that still exist after the global registration. Both geometric and appearance constraints are enforced during our alignment; therefore, we are able to get the recovered model with accurate geometry as well as high fidelity color maps for the mesh. Experiments on both synthetic and various real datasets have demonstrated the capability of our approach to reconstruct complete and watertight deformable objects.

  20. Retrofitting of heat exchanger networks involving streams with variable heat capacity: Application of single and multi-objective optimization

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sreepathi, Bhargava Krishna; Rangaiah, G.P.


    Heat exchanger network (HEN) retrofitting improves the energy efficiency of the current process by reducing external utilities. In this work, HEN retrofitting involving streams having variable heat capacity is studied. For this, enthalpy values of a stream are fitted to a continuous cubic polynomial instead of a stepwise approach employed in the previous studies [1,2]. The former methodology is closer to reality as enthalpy or heat capacity changes gradually instead of step changes. Using the polynomial fitting formulation, single objective optimization (SOO) and multi-objective optimization (MOO) of a HEN retrofit problem are investigated. The results obtained show an improvement in the utility savings, and MOO provides many Pareto-optimal solutions to choose from. Also, Pareto-optimal solutions involving area addition in existing heat exchangers only (but no new exchangers and no structural modifications) are found and provided for comparison with those involving new exchangers and structural modifications as well. - Highlights: • HEN retrofitting involving streams with variable heat capacities is studied. • A continuous approach to handle variable heat capacity is proposed and tested. • Better and practical solutions are obtained for HEN retrofitting in process plants. • Pareto-optimal solutions provide many alternate choices for HEN retrofitting

  1. Results of single-staged rotational osteotomy in a child with congenital proximal radioulnar synostosis: subjective and objective evaluation. (United States)

    Shingade, Viraj U; Shingade, Rashmi V; Ughade, Suresh N


    For congenital proximal radioulnar synostosis, both conservative and operative treatments have been described. Most of the studies describing surgical interventions are based on subjective evaluation of the forearm function and have used severe degree of forearm pronation as an indication for surgery. This study describes a single-staged rotational osteotomy of the proximal third ulna and distal third radius. The aim of the study was to assess the utility of the described surgical procedure by subjective and objective evaluations of the forearm function. Forty-eight children with congenital proximal radioulnar synostosis were evaluated by subjective and objective assessments and were followed up prospectively. Subjective evaluation consisted of a set of 12 questions regarding the basic activities of life. Objective evaluation was made using the Jebsen-Taylor hand-function test and a classification system used by Failla and colleagues for 15 tasks described by Morrey and colleagues. Eleven children were treated conservatively. Thirty-six children underwent a single-staged rotational osteotomy of the proximal third ulna and distal third radius. After surgery, the evaluations were repeated. The mean age at surgery was 8.6±3.7 years, and the mean postoperative follow-up period was 54±13 months. All operated forearms showed a statistically significant improvement in functioning after surgery as per the subjective and objective evaluations. The mean time taken to carry out all activities before surgery was 47.7+10.0 seconds, which significantly reduced to 33.3+6.6 seconds after surgery (P=0.0001) as per the results of the Jebsen-Taylor hand-function test. All good (n=19) and fair (n=11) results were converted to excellent (n=30) after surgery as per the modified Failla classification. There were no neurovascular injuries as compared with other published techniques. Only 1 child had delayed union, and 1 had persistent dorsal angulation at the radial osteotomy site. For

  2. Student Perceptions of Simulation Games and Training Software on Improving Course Learning Objectives and Career Preparedness


    Parrott, Scott D.; Mehlhorn, Joey; Davidson, Kelly


    Online simulation and training games were used in two undergraduate courses in agribusiness to help improve student understanding and course objectives. Students responded positively to the teaching activities. The activities also extended the out of class learning environment.

  3. Improved intelligent scissors and snake-based VOP interpolation for semi-automatic video object segmentation (United States)

    Yang, Gaobo; Zhang, ZhaoYang; Chen, Jie


    Object-based segmentation of image sequences is one of the issues often arise in the world of video processing and communications. In this paper, a robust semiautomatic video object segmentation scheme is proposed. To facilitate users defining the initial object contour efficiently and accurately, an improved intelligent scissors is proposed by trading off the accuracy of original intelligent scissors and the simplicity of bounding box. To avoid the accumulated errors during object tracking, video sequence is firstly decomposed into video clips according to the rigidity of video object and the motion complexity. Then a snake-based bi-directional tracking is utilized to interpolate the video object planes (VOPs) of successive frames. Experimental results demonstrate that it can achieve better spatial accuracy and temporal coherency than COST211 AM, with about 10-22% improvement of spatial accuracy and almost the same temporal coherency.

  4. Improvement of Source Number Estimation Method for Single Channel Signal.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhi Dong

    Full Text Available Source number estimation methods for single channel signal have been investigated and the improvements for each method are suggested in this work. Firstly, the single channel data is converted to multi-channel form by delay process. Then, algorithms used in the array signal processing, such as Gerschgorin's disk estimation (GDE and minimum description length (MDL, are introduced to estimate the source number of the received signal. The previous results have shown that the MDL based on information theoretic criteria (ITC obtains a superior performance than GDE at low SNR. However it has no ability to handle the signals containing colored noise. On the contrary, the GDE method can eliminate the influence of colored noise. Nevertheless, its performance at low SNR is not satisfactory. In order to solve these problems and contradictions, the work makes remarkable improvements on these two methods on account of the above consideration. A diagonal loading technique is employed to ameliorate the MDL method and a jackknife technique is referenced to optimize the data covariance matrix in order to improve the performance of the GDE method. The results of simulation have illustrated that the performance of original methods have been promoted largely.

  5. A single bout of exercise improves motor memory

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Roig, Marc; Skriver, Kasper Christen; Lundbye-Jensen, Jesper


    Regular physical activity has a positive impact on cognition and brain function. Here we investigated if a single bout of exercise can improve motor memory and motor skill learning. We also explored if the timing of the exercise bout in relation to the timing of practice has any impact...... of a motor skill. The positive effects of acute exercise on motor memory are maximized when exercise is performed immediately after practice, during the early stages of memory consolidation. Thus, the timing of exercise in relation to practice is possibly an important factor regulating the effects of acute...... exercise on long-term motor memory....

  6. Visualisasi Perkembangan Janin Manusia menggunakan Augmented Reality dengan teknik Single Marker Multi Object

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andria Kusuma Wahyudi


    Full Text Available Embriologi adalah bagian dari cabang ilmu pengetahuan alam biologi yang mempelajari tentang perkembangan embrio atau calon janin dalam rahim. Dimana usia dari calon janin di dalam kandungan dihitung saat seorang wanita telah dibuahi oleh sperma pria dalam kurun waktu tujuh hari sebelum ovulasi. Media pembahasan mengenai perkembangan janin di dalam kandungan terdapat di buku-buku pelajaran, artikel umum, dan website khusus ibu hamil kurang menarik minat karena terlalu banyak teks dan memiliki tampilan belum atraktif. Paper ini menggunakan teknologi Augmented Reality yang dapat merealisasikan dunia virtual ke dunia nyata secara real-time sebagai media pembahasan yang dapat memberikan kemudahan dalam memberikan informasi mengenai perkembangan janin didalam kandungan. Dengan menggunakan teknologi Augmented Reality, maka pengguna dapat menggunakan kamera smartphone berbasis Android untuk menangkap marker yang dapat memperlihatkan objek virtual pada dunia nyata. Dalam pembahasan paper ini, kami menggunakan single marker multi object sehingga marker yang diperlukan cukup satu saja untuk menampilkan semua objek 3D yang ada. Aplikasi visualisasi pengenalan perkembangan janin manusia dalam kandungan menggunakan teknologi Augmented Reality dapat memberikan informasi yang dapat ditangkap dengan mudah bagi pengguna mulai dari kalangan remaja hingga orang dewasa.

  7. Single- and Multiple-Objective Optimization with Differential Evolution and Neural Networks (United States)

    Rai, Man Mohan


    Genetic and evolutionary algorithms have been applied to solve numerous problems in engineering design where they have been used primarily as optimization procedures. These methods have an advantage over conventional gradient-based search procedures became they are capable of finding global optima of multi-modal functions and searching design spaces with disjoint feasible regions. They are also robust in the presence of noisy data. Another desirable feature of these methods is that they can efficiently use distributed and parallel computing resources since multiple function evaluations (flow simulations in aerodynamics design) can be performed simultaneously and independently on ultiple processors. For these reasons genetic and evolutionary algorithms are being used more frequently in design optimization. Examples include airfoil and wing design and compressor and turbine airfoil design. They are also finding increasing use in multiple-objective and multidisciplinary optimization. This lecture will focus on an evolutionary method that is a relatively new member to the general class of evolutionary methods called differential evolution (DE). This method is easy to use and program and it requires relatively few user-specified constants. These constants are easily determined for a wide class of problems. Fine-tuning the constants will off course yield the solution to the optimization problem at hand more rapidly. DE can be efficiently implemented on parallel computers and can be used for continuous, discrete and mixed discrete/continuous optimization problems. It does not require the objective function to be continuous and is noise tolerant. DE and applications to single and multiple-objective optimization will be included in the presentation and lecture notes. A method for aerodynamic design optimization that is based on neural networks will also be included as a part of this lecture. The method offers advantages over traditional optimization methods. It is more

  8. Hydrologic modification to improve habitat in riverine lakes: Management objectives, experimental approach, and initial conditions (United States)

    Johnson, Barry L.; Barko, John W.; Gerasimov, Yuri; James, William F.; Litvinov, Alexander; Naimo, Teresa J.; Wiener, James G.; Gaugush, Robert F.; Rogala, James T.; Rogers, Sara J.; Schoettger, R.A.


    The Finger Lakes habitat-rehabilitation project is intended to improve physical and chemical conditions for fish in six connected back water lakes in Navigation Pool 5 of the upper Missouri River. The primary management objective is to improve water temperature, dissolved oxygen concentration and current velocity during winter for bluegills, Lepomis macrochirus, and black crappies, Pomoxis nigromaculatus, two of the primary sport fishes in the lakes. The lakes will be hydrologically altered by Installing culverts to Introduce controlled flows of oxygenated water into four lakes, and an existing unregulated culvert on a fifth lake will be equipped with a control gate to regulate inflow. These habitat modifications constitute a manipulative field experiment that will compare pre-project (1991 to summer 1993) and post-project (fall 1993 to 1996) conditions in the lakes, including hydrology, chemistry, rooted vegetation, and fish and macroinvertebrate communities. Initial data indicate that the Finger Lakes differ in water chemistry, hydrology, and macrophyte abundance. Macroinvertebrate communities also differed among lakes: species diversity was highest in lakes with dense aquatic macrophytes. The system seems to support a single fish community, although some species concentrated in individual lakes at different times. The introduction of similar flows into five of the lakes will probably reduce the existing physical and chemical differences among lakes. However, our ability to predict the effects of hydrologic modification on fish populations is limited by uncertainties concerning both the interactions of temperature, oxygen and current in winter and the biological responses of primary and secondary producers. Results from this study should provide guidance for similar habitat-rehabilitation projects in large rivers.

  9. Engineering Single-Atom Cobalt Catalysts toward Improved Electrocatalysis. (United States)

    Wan, Gang; Yu, Pengfei; Chen, Hangrong; Wen, Jianguo; Sun, Cheng-Jun; Zhou, Hua; Zhang, Nian; Li, Qianru; Zhao, Wanpeng; Xie, Bing; Li, Tao; Shi, Jianlin


    The development of cost-effective catalysts to replace noble metal is attracting increasing interests in many fields of catalysis and energy, and intensive efforts are focused on the integration of transition-metal sites in carbon as noble-metal-free candidates. Recently, the discovery of single-atom dispersed catalyst (SAC) provides a new frontier in heterogeneous catalysis. However, the electrocatalytic application of SAC is still subject to several theoretical and experimental limitations. Further advances depend on a better design of SAC through optimizing its interaction with adsorbates during catalysis. Here, distinctive from previous studies, favorable 3d electronic occupation and enhanced metal-adsorbates interactions in single-atom centers via the construction of nonplanar coordination is achieved, which is confirmed by advanced X-ray spectroscopic and electrochemical studies. The as-designed atomically dispersed cobalt sites within nonplanar coordination show significantly improved catalytic activity and selectivity toward the oxygen reduction reaction, approaching the benchmark Pt-based catalysts. More importantly, the illustration of the active sites in SAC indicates metal-natured catalytic sites and a media-dependent catalytic pathway. Achieving structural and electronic engineering on SAC that promotes its catalytic performances provides a paradigm to bridge the gap between single-atom catalysts design and electrocatalytic applications. © 2018 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  10. SMART Security Cooperation Objectives: Improving DoD Planning and Guidance (United States)


    expanded SMART objective -setting criteria that have been long employed by strategic planners in the busi - ness world and have been more recently used by... business world and has been more recently used by DoD planners. As discussed earlier, the criteria for our SMART objective framework are that objectives be...Cooperation Objectives : Improving DoD Planning and Guidance the “phase zero space.” In the end, PACOM officials say, they are “not in the business of

  11. Improvements in Production of Single-Walled Carbon Nanotubes (United States)

    Balzano, Leandro; Resasco, Daniel E.


    A continuing program of research and development has been directed toward improvement of a prior batch process in which single-walled carbon nanotubes are formed by catalytic disproportionation of carbon monoxide in a fluidized-bed reactor. The overall effect of the improvements has been to make progress toward converting the process from a batch mode to a continuous mode and to scaling of production to larger quantities. Efforts have also been made to optimize associated purification and dispersion post processes to make them effective at large scales and to investigate means of incorporating the purified products into composite materials. The ultimate purpose of the program is to enable the production of high-quality single-walled carbon nanotubes in quantities large enough and at costs low enough to foster the further development of practical applications. The fluidized bed used in this process contains mixed-metal catalyst particles. The choice of the catalyst and the operating conditions is such that the yield of single-walled carbon nanotubes, relative to all forms of carbon (including carbon fibers, multi-walled carbon nanotubes, and graphite) produced in the disproportionation reaction is more than 90 weight percent. After the reaction, the nanotubes are dispersed in various solvents in preparation for end use, which typically involves blending into a plastic, ceramic, or other matrix to form a composite material. Notwithstanding the batch nature of the unmodified prior fluidized-bed process, the fluidized-bed reactor operates in a continuous mode during the process. The operation is almost entirely automated, utilizing mass flow controllers, a control computer running software specific to the process, and other equipment. Moreover, an important inherent advantage of fluidized- bed reactors in general is that solid particles can be added to and removed from fluidized beds during operation. For these reasons, the process and equipment were amenable to

  12. Characterisation of a single photon counting pixel system for imaging of low-contrast objects

    CERN Document Server

    Mikulec, B; Dipasquale, G; Schwarz, C; Watt, J


    In the framework of the Medipix collaboration the PCC, a single photon counting pixel chip, has been developed with the aim of improving the contrast resolution in medical imaging applications. The PCC consists of a matrix of 64x64 square pixels with 170 mm side length, each pixel comprising a 15 bit counter and a pulse height discriminator. The chip has been bump bonded to equally segmented 200 mm thick SI-LEC GaAs detectors showing a very high absorption energy for X-rays used in diagnostics. An absolute calibration of the system with a radioactive source and a synchrotron beam are described resulting in the value of the test input capacitance of ~24.7 fF. Using this value a full characterisation of the system from electrical measurements is presented. The entire system can reach a minimum threshold of ~2100 e- with ~250e- rms noise. One of the characteristics of the PCC is the possibility to adjust the thresholds of all pixels on a pixel-by-pixel basis with 3-bit precision. The threshold distribution after...

  13. Object-oriented identification of forested landslides with derivatives of single pulse LiDAR data (United States)

    Van Den Eeckhaut, Miet; Kerle, Norman; Poesen, Jean; Hervás, Javier


    In contrast to the many studies that use expert-based analysis of LiDAR derivatives for landslide mapping in forested terrain, only few studies have attempted to develop (semi-)automatic methods for extracting landslides from LiDAR derivatives. While all these studies are pixel-based, it has not yet been tested whether object-oriented analysis (OOA) could be an alternative. This study investigates the potential of OOA using only single-pulse LiDAR derivatives, such as slope gradient, roughness and curvature to map landslides. More specifically, the focus is on both LiDAR data segmentation and classification of slow-moving landslides in densely vegetated areas, where spectral data do not allow accurate landslide identification. A multistage procedure has been developed and tested in the Flemish Ardennes (Belgium). The procedure consists of (1) image binarization and multiresolution segmentation, (2) classification of landslide parts (main scarps and landslide body segments) and non-landslide features (i.e. earth banks and cropland fields) with supervised support vector machines at the appropriate scale, (3) delineation of landslide flanks, (4) growing of a landslide body starting from its main scarp, and (5) final cleaning of the inventory map. The results obtained show that OOA using LiDAR derivatives allows recognition and characterization of profound morphologic properties of forested deep-seated landslides on soil-covered hillslopes, because more than 90% of the main scarps and 70% of the landslide bodies of an expert-based inventory were accurately identified with OOA. For mountainous areas with bedrock, on the other hand, creation of a transferable model is expected to be more difficult.

  14. Complex method to calculate objective assessments of information systems protection to improve expert assessments reliability (United States)

    Abdenov, A. Zh; Trushin, V. A.; Abdenova, G. A.


    The paper considers the questions of filling the relevant SIEM nodes based on calculations of objective assessments in order to improve the reliability of subjective expert assessments. The proposed methodology is necessary for the most accurate security risk assessment of information systems. This technique is also intended for the purpose of establishing real-time operational information protection in the enterprise information systems. Risk calculations are based on objective estimates of the adverse events implementation probabilities, predictions of the damage magnitude from information security violations. Calculations of objective assessments are necessary to increase the reliability of the proposed expert assessments.

  15. A new hybrid genetic algorithm for optimizing the single and multivariate objective functions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tumuluru, Jaya Shankar [Idaho National Laboratory; McCulloch, Richard Chet James [Idaho National Laboratory


    In this work a new hybrid genetic algorithm was developed which combines a rudimentary adaptive steepest ascent hill climbing algorithm with a sophisticated evolutionary algorithm in order to optimize complex multivariate design problems. By combining a highly stochastic algorithm (evolutionary) with a simple deterministic optimization algorithm (adaptive steepest ascent) computational resources are conserved and the solution converges rapidly when compared to either algorithm alone. In genetic algorithms natural selection is mimicked by random events such as breeding and mutation. In the adaptive steepest ascent algorithm each variable is perturbed by a small amount and the variable that caused the most improvement is incremented by a small step. If the direction of most benefit is exactly opposite of the previous direction with the most benefit then the step size is reduced by a factor of 2, thus the step size adapts to the terrain. A graphical user interface was created in MATLAB to provide an interface between the hybrid genetic algorithm and the user. Additional features such as bounding the solution space and weighting the objective functions individually are also built into the interface. The algorithm developed was tested to optimize the functions developed for a wood pelleting process. Using process variables (such as feedstock moisture content, die speed, and preheating temperature) pellet properties were appropriately optimized. Specifically, variables were found which maximized unit density, bulk density, tapped density, and durability while minimizing pellet moisture content and specific energy consumption. The time and computational resources required for the optimization were dramatically decreased using the hybrid genetic algorithm when compared to MATLAB's native evolutionary optimization tool.

  16. Improvements of an objective model of compressed breasts undergoing mammography: Generation and characterization of breast shapes. (United States)

    Rodríguez-Ruiz, Alejandro; Feng, Steve Si Jia; van Zelst, Jan; Vreemann, Suzan; Mann, Jessica Rice; D'Orsi, Carl Joseph; Sechopoulos, Ioannis


    To develop a set of accurate 2D models of compressed breasts undergoing mammography or breast tomosynthesis, based on objective analysis, to accurately characterize mammograms with few linearly independent parameters, and to generate novel clinically realistic paired cranio-caudal (CC) and medio-lateral oblique (MLO) views of the breast. We seek to improve on an existing model of compressed breasts by overcoming detector size bias, removing the nipple and non-mammary tissue, pairing the CC and MLO views from a single breast, and incorporating the pectoralis major muscle contour into the model. The outer breast shapes in 931 paired CC and MLO mammograms were automatically detected with an in-house developed segmentation algorithm. From these shapes three generic models (CC-only, MLO-only, and joint CC/MLO) with linearly independent components were constructed via principal component analysis (PCA). The ability of the models to represent mammograms not used for PCA was tested via leave-one-out cross-validation, by measuring the average distance error (ADE). The individual models based on six components were found to depict breast shapes with accuracy (mean ADE-CC = 0.81 mm, ADE-MLO = 1.64 mm, ADE-Pectoralis = 1.61 mm), outperforming the joint CC/MLO model (P ≤ 0.001). The joint model based on 12 principal components contains 99.5% of the total variance of the data, and can be used to generate new clinically realistic paired CC and MLO breast shapes. This is achieved by generating random sets of 12 principal components, following the Gaussian distributions of the histograms of each component, which were obtained from the component values determined from the images in the mammography database used. Our joint CC/MLO model can successfully generate paired CC and MLO view shapes of the same simulated breast, while the individual models can be used to represent with high accuracy clinical acquired mammograms with a small set of parameters. This is the first

  17. An improved system of detecting single event effect in SRAM

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tong Teng; Wang Xiaohui; Zhang Zhangang; Liu Tianqi; Gu Song; Yang Zhenlei; Su Hong; Liu Jie


    The material research center in Institute of Modern Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences (IMP, CAS) have made a fruitful achievements in the research of single event effects (SEEs) occurring in static random access memory (SRAM). However, there are some drawbacks exist in the two systems of detecting SEE owning by the material research center. Therefore, an improved method of detecting SEE is proposed, and the method functionality is implemented in a circuit. Further, a sequence of experiments are carried out in the beam radiation terminal of the Heavy Ion Facility in Lanzhou (HIRFL), and a bunch of experimental data are collected. The irradiation tests were carried out using 129 Xe for the SEE research of 65 nm SRAMs; Using 12 C for the SEE research of the 65, 130 and 150 nm SRAMs with ECC module; Using 129 Xe for the SEL research of the common commercial SRAMs and so on. These experiments provide a statistical evidence of the effectiveness and robustness of the improved system. It is believed that the proposed system will be beneficial for detecting SEE in diverse settings, and it could be taken advantage of as a platform for future research on SEE tests in more intricate devices. (authors)

  18. Multi objective design optimization of plate fin heat sinks using improved differential search algorithm


    Turgut, Oguz Emrah


    This study provides the multi-objective optimization of plate fin heat sinks equipped with flow – through and impingement-flow air-cooling system by using Improved Differential Search algorithm. Differential Search algorithm mimics the subsistence characteristics of the living beings through the migration process. Convergence speed of the algorithm is enhanced with the local search based perturbation schemes and this improvement yields favorable solution outputs according to the results obtai...

  19. Short-term economic environmental hydrothermal scheduling using improved multi-objective gravitational search algorithm

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li, Chunlong; Zhou, Jianzhong; Lu, Peng; Wang, Chao


    Highlights: • Improved multi-objective gravitational search algorithm. • An elite archive set is proposed to guide evolutionary process. • Neighborhood searching mechanism to improve local search ability. • Adopt chaotic mutation for avoiding premature convergence. • Propose feasible space method to handle hydro plant constrains. - Abstract: With growing concerns about energy and environment, short-term economic environmental hydrothermal scheduling (SEEHS) plays a more and more important role in power system. Because of the two objectives and various constraints, SEEHS is a complex multi-objective optimization problem (MOOP). In order to solve the problem, we propose an improved multi-objective gravitational search algorithm (IMOGSA) in this paper. In IMOGSA, the mass of the agent is redefined by multiple objectives to make it suitable for MOOP. An elite archive set is proposed to keep Pareto optimal solutions and guide evolutionary process. For balancing exploration and exploitation, a neighborhood searching mechanism is presented to cooperate with chaotic mutation. Moreover, a novel method based on feasible space is proposed to handle hydro plant constraints during SEEHS, and a violation adjustment method is adopted to handle power balance constraint. For verifying its effectiveness, the proposed IMOGSA is applied to a hydrothermal system in two different case studies. The simulation results show that IMOGSA has a competitive performance in SEEHS when compared with other established algorithms

  20. Localized probability of improvement for kriging based multi-objective optimization (United States)

    Li, Yinjiang; Xiao, Song; Barba, Paolo Di; Rotaru, Mihai; Sykulski, Jan K.


    The paper introduces a new approach to kriging based multi-objective optimization by utilizing a local probability of improvement as the infill sampling criterion and the nearest neighbor check to ensure diversification and uniform distribution of Pareto fronts. The proposed method is computationally fast and linearly scalable to higher dimensions.

  1. Improving a Deep Learning based RGB-D Object Recognition Model by Ensemble Learning

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Aakerberg, Andreas; Nasrollahi, Kamal; Heder, Thomas


    Augmenting RGB images with depth information is a well-known method to significantly improve the recognition accuracy of object recognition models. Another method to im- prove the performance of visual recognition models is ensemble learning. However, this method has not been widely explored...... in combination with deep convolutional neural network based RGB-D object recognition models. Hence, in this paper, we form different ensembles of complementary deep convolutional neural network models, and show that this can be used to increase the recognition performance beyond existing limits. Experiments...... on the Washington RGB-D Object Dataset show that our best performing ensemble improves the recognition performance with 0.7% compared to using the baseline model alone....

  2. Long working distance objective lenses for single atom trapping and imaging

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pritchard, J. D., E-mail: [Department of Physics, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1150 University Avenue, Madison, Wisconsin 53706 (United States); Department of Physics, University of Strathclyde, 107 Rottenrow East, Glasgow G4 0NG (United Kingdom); Isaacs, J. A.; Saffman, M. [Department of Physics, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1150 University Avenue, Madison, Wisconsin 53706 (United States)


    We present a pair of optimized objective lenses with long working distances of 117 mm and 65 mm, respectively, that offer diffraction limited performance for both Cs and Rb wavelengths when imaging through standard vacuum windows. The designs utilise standard catalog lens elements to provide a simple and cost-effective solution. Objective 1 provides NA = 0.175 offering 3 μm resolution whilst objective 2 is optimized for high collection efficiency with NA = 0.29 and 1.8 μm resolution. This flexible design can be further extended for use at shorter wavelengths by simply re-optimising the lens separations.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. Khalfi


    Full Text Available In the real world, data is imperfect and in various ways such as imprecision, vagueness, uncertainty, ambiguity and inconsistency. For geographic data, the fuzzy aspect is mainly manifested in time, space and the function of objects and is due to a lack of precision. Therefore, the researchers in the domain emphasize the importance of modeling data structures in GIS but also their lack of adaptation to fuzzy data. The F-Perceptory approachh manages the modeling of imperfect geographic information with UML. This management is essential to maintain faithfulness to reality and to better guide the user in his decision-making. However, this approach does not manage fuzzy complex geographic objects. The latter presents a multiple object with similar or different geographic shapes. So, in this paper, we propose to improve the F-Perceptory approach by proposing to handle fuzzy complex geographic objects modeling. In a second step, we propose its transformation to the UML modeling.

  4. Improving the Patron Experience: Sterling Memorial Library's Single Service Point (United States)

    Sider, Laura Galas


    This article describes the planning process and implementation of a single service point at Yale University's Sterling Memorial Library. While much recent scholarship on single service points (SSPs) has focused on the virtues or hazards of eliminating reference desks in libraries nationwide, this essay explores the ways in which single service…

  5. Few-view single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) reconstruction based on a blurred piecewise constant object model

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wolf, Paul A.; Jørgensen, Jakob Sauer; Schmidt, Taly G.


    A sparsity-exploiting algorithm intended for few-view Single Photon Emission Computed Tomography (SPECT) reconstruction is proposed and characterized. The algorithm models the object as piecewise constant subject to a blurring operation. To validate that the algorithm closely approximates the true...

  6. Moving object detection in top-view aerial videos improved by image stacking (United States)

    Teutsch, Michael; Krüger, Wolfgang; Beyerer, Jürgen


    Image stacking is a well-known method that is used to improve the quality of images in video data. A set of consecutive images is aligned by applying image registration and warping. In the resulting image stack, each pixel has redundant information about its intensity value. This redundant information can be used to suppress image noise, resharpen blurry images, or even enhance the spatial image resolution as done in super-resolution. Small moving objects in the videos usually get blurred or distorted by image stacking and thus need to be handled explicitly. We use image stacking in an innovative way: image registration is applied to small moving objects only, and image warping blurs the stationary background that surrounds the moving objects. Our video data are coming from a small fixed-wing unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) that acquires top-view gray-value images of urban scenes. Moving objects are mainly cars but also other vehicles such as motorcycles. The resulting images, after applying our proposed image stacking approach, are used to improve baseline algorithms for vehicle detection and segmentation. We improve precision and recall by up to 0.011, which corresponds to a reduction of the number of false positive and false negative detections by more than 3 per second. Furthermore, we show how our proposed image stacking approach can be implemented efficiently.

  7. A calderón-preconditioned single source combined field integral equation for analyzing scattering from homogeneous penetrable objects

    KAUST Repository

    Valdés, Felipe


    A new regularized single source equation for analyzing scattering from homogeneous penetrable objects is presented. The proposed equation is a linear combination of a Calderón-preconditioned single source electric field integral equation and a single source magnetic field integral equation. The equation is immune to low-frequency and dense-mesh breakdown, and free from spurious resonances. Unlike dual source formulations, this equation involves operator products that cannot be discretized using standard procedures for discretizing standalone electric, magnetic, and combined field operators. Instead, the single source equation proposed here is discretized using a recently developed technique that achieves a well-conditioned mapping from div- to curl-conforming function spaces, thereby fully respecting the space mapping properties of the operators involved, and guaranteeing accuracy and stability. Numerical results show that the proposed equation and discretization technique give rise to rapidly convergent solutions. They also validate the equation\\'s resonant free character. © 2006 IEEE.

  8. A new method for solving single and multi-objective fuzzy minimum ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    advantage of the proposed method over existing methods is that the fuzzy MCF prob- lems which can be ... objective fuzzy MCF problems which cannot be solved by using the existing methods are solved by ...... paper. Mehar is a lovely daughter of Parmpreet Kaur (Research Scholar under my supervision). References.

  9. Improved object optimal synthetic description, modeling, learning, and discrimination by GEOGINE computational kernel (United States)

    Fiorini, Rodolfo A.; Dacquino, Gianfranco


    GEOGINE (GEOmetrical enGINE), a state-of-the-art OMG (Ontological Model Generator) based on n-D Tensor Invariants for n-Dimensional shape/texture optimal synthetic representation, description and learning, was presented in previous conferences elsewhere recently. Improved computational algorithms based on the computational invariant theory of finite groups in Euclidean space and a demo application is presented. Progressive model automatic generation is discussed. GEOGINE can be used as an efficient computational kernel for fast reliable application development and delivery in advanced biomedical engineering, biometric, intelligent computing, target recognition, content image retrieval, data mining technological areas mainly. Ontology can be regarded as a logical theory accounting for the intended meaning of a formal dictionary, i.e., its ontological commitment to a particular conceptualization of the world object. According to this approach, "n-D Tensor Calculus" can be considered a "Formal Language" to reliably compute optimized "n-Dimensional Tensor Invariants" as specific object "invariant parameter and attribute words" for automated n-Dimensional shape/texture optimal synthetic object description by incremental model generation. The class of those "invariant parameter and attribute words" can be thought as a specific "Formal Vocabulary" learned from a "Generalized Formal Dictionary" of the "Computational Tensor Invariants" language. Even object chromatic attributes can be effectively and reliably computed from object geometric parameters into robust colour shape invariant characteristics. As a matter of fact, any highly sophisticated application needing effective, robust object geometric/colour invariant attribute capture and parameterization features, for reliable automated object learning and discrimination can deeply benefit from GEOGINE progressive automated model generation computational kernel performance. Main operational advantages over previous

  10. Objective breast symmetry analysis with the breast analyzing tool (BAT): improved tool for clinical trials. (United States)

    Krois, Wilfried; Romar, Alexander Ken; Wild, Thomas; Dubsky, Peter; Exner, Ruth; Panhofer, Peter; Jakesz, Raimund; Gnant, Michael; Fitzal, Florian


    Objective cosmetic analysis is important to evaluate the cosmetic outcome after breast surgery or breast radiotherapy. For this purpose, we aimed to improve our recently developed objective scoring software, the Breast Analyzing Tool (BAT ® ). A questionnaire about important factors for breast symmetry was handed out to ten experts (surgeons) and eight non-experts (students). Using these factors, the first-generation BAT ® software formula has been modified and the breast symmetry index (BSI) from 129 women after breast surgery has been calculated by the first author with this new BAT ® formula. The resulting BSI values of these 129 breast cancer patients were then correlated with subjective symmetry scores from the 18 observers using the Harris scale. The BSI of ten images was also calculated from five observers different from the first author to calculate inter-rater reliability. In a second phase, the new BAT ® formula was validated and correlated with subjective scores of additional 50 women after breast surgery. The inter-rater reliability analysis of the objective evaluation by the BAT ® from five individuals showed an ICC of 0.992 with almost no difference between different observers. All subjective scores of 50 patients correlated with the modified BSI score with a high Pearson correlation coefficient of 0.909 (p BAT ® software improves the correlation between subjective and objective BSI values, and may be a new standard for trials evaluating breast symmetry.

  11. Improved Object Detection Using a Robotic Sensing Antenna with Vibration Damping Control. (United States)

    Feliu-Batlle, Vicente; Feliu-Talegon, Daniel; Castillo-Berrio, Claudia Fernanda


    Some insects or mammals use antennae or whiskers to detect by the sense of touch obstacles or recognize objects in environments in which other senses like vision cannot work. Artificial flexible antennae can be used in robotics to mimic this sense of touch in these recognition tasks. We have designed and built a two-degree of freedom (2DOF) flexible antenna sensor device to perform robot navigation tasks. This device is composed of a flexible beam, two servomotors that drive the beam and a load cell sensor that detects the contact of the beam with an object. It is found that the efficiency of such a device strongly depends on the speed and accuracy achieved by the antenna positioning system. These issues are severely impaired by the vibrations that appear in the antenna during its movement. However, these antennae are usually moved without taking care of these undesired vibrations. This article proposes a new closed-loop control schema that cancels vibrations and improves the free movements of the antenna. Moreover, algorithms to estimate the 3D beam position and the instant and point of contact with an object are proposed. Experiments are reported that illustrate the efficiency of these proposed algorithms and the improvements achieved in object detection tasks using a control system that cancels beam vibrations.

  12. Single-Step Ironmaking from Ore to Improve Energy Efficiency

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    S.K. Kawatra; B. Anamerie; T.C. Eisele


    The pig iron nugget process was developed as an alternative to the traditional blast furnace process by Kobe Steel. The process aimed to produce pig iron nuggets, which have similar chemical and physical properties to blast furnace pig iron, in a single step. The pig iron nugget process utilizes coal instead of coke and self reducing and fluxing dried green balls instead of pellets and sinters. In this process the environmental emissions caused by coke and sinter production, and energy lost between pellet induration (heat hardening) and transportation to the blast furnace can be eliminated. The objectives of this research were to (1) produce pig iron nuggets in the laboratory, (2) characterize the pig iron nugget produced and compare them with blast furnace pig iron, (3) investigate the furnace temperature and residence time effects on the pig iron nugget production, and (4) optimize the operational furnace temperatures and residence times. The experiments involved heat treatment of self reducing and fluxing dried green balls at various furnace temperatures and residence times. Three chemically and physically different products were produced after the compete reduction of iron oxides to iron depending on the operational furnace temperatures and/or residence times. These products were direct reduced iron (DRI), transition direct reduced iron (TDRI), and pig iron nuggets. The increase in the carbon content of the system as a function of furnace temperature and/or residence time dictated the formation of these products. The direct reduced iron, transition direct reduced iron, and pig iron nuggets produced were analyzed for their chemical composition, degree of metallization, apparent density, microstructure and microhardness. In addition, the change in the carbon content of the system with the changing furnace temperature and/or residence time was detected by optical microscopy and Microhardness measurements. The sufficient carbon dissolution required for the

  13. An Improved Artificial Bee Colony Algorithm and Its Application to Multi-Objective Optimal Power Flow

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xuanhu He


    Full Text Available Optimal power flow (OPF objective functions involve minimization of the total fuel costs of generating units, minimization of atmospheric pollutant emissions, minimization of active power losses and minimization of voltage deviations. In this paper, a fuzzy multi-objective OPF model is established by the fuzzy membership functions and the fuzzy satisfaction-maximizing method. The improved artificial bee colony (IABC algorithm is applied to solve the model. In the IABC algorithm, the mutation and crossover operations of a differential evolution algorithm are utilized to generate new solutions to improve exploitation capacity; tent chaos mapping is utilized to generate initial swarms, reference mutation solutions and the reference dimensions of crossover operations to improve swarm diversity. The proposed method is applied to multi-objective OPF problems in IEEE 30-bus, IEEE 57-bus and IEEE 300-bus test systems. The results are compared with those obtained by other algorithms, which demonstrates the effectiveness and superiority of the IABC algorithm, and how the optimal scheme obtained by the proposed model can make systems more economical and stable.

  14. Optimal Deflection of Earth-Crossing Object Using a Three-Dimensional Single Impulse

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Byeong-Hee Mihn


    Full Text Available Optimization problems are formulated to calculate optimal impulses for deflecting Earth-Crossing Objects using a Nonlinear Programming. This formulation allows us to analyze the velocity changes in normal direction to the celestial body's orbital plane, which is neglected in many previous studies. The constrained optimization in the three-dimensional space is based on a patched conic method including the Earth's gravitational effects, and yields impulsive Δ V to deflect the target's orbit. The optimal solution is dependent on relative positions and velocities between the Earth and the Earth-crossing objects, and can be represented by optimal magnitude and angle of Δ V as a functions of a impulse time. The perpendicular component of Δ V to the orbit plane can sometimes play un-negligible role as the impulse time approaches the impact time. The optimal Δ V is increased when the original orbit of Earth-crossing object is more similar to the Earth's orbit, and is also exponentially increased as the impulse time reaches to the impact time. The analyses performed in present paper can be used to the deflection missions in the future.

  15. Optical encryption of multiple three-dimensional objects based on multiple interferences and single-pixel digital holography (United States)

    Wang, Ying; Liu, Qi; Wang, Jun; Wang, Qiong-Hua


    We present an optical encryption method of multiple three-dimensional objects based on multiple interferences and single-pixel digital holography. By modifying the Mach–Zehnder interferometer, the interference of the multiple objects beams and the one reference beam is used to simultaneously encrypt multiple objects into a ciphertext. During decryption, each three-dimensional object can be decrypted independently without having to decrypt other objects. Since the single-pixel digital holography based on compressive sensing theory is introduced, the encrypted data of this method is effectively reduced. In addition, recording fewer encrypted data can greatly reduce the bandwidth of network transmission. Moreover, the compressive sensing essentially serves as a secret key that makes an intruder attack invalid, which means that the system is more secure than the conventional encryption method. Simulation results demonstrate the feasibility of the proposed method and show that the system has good security performance. Project supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 61405130 and 61320106015).

  16. Calibration and Validation Parameter of Hydrologic Model HEC-HMS using Particle Swarm Optimization Algorithms – Single Objective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Garmeh


    model that simulates both wet and dry weatherbehavior.Programming of HEC –HMS has been done by MATLAB and techniques such as elite mutation and creating confusion have been used in order to strengthen the algorithm and improve the results. The event-based HEC-HMS model simulatesthe precipitation-runoff process for each set of parameter values generated by PSO. Turbulentand elitism with mutation are also employed to deal with PSO premature convergence. The integrated PSO-HMS model is tested on the Kardeh dam basin located in the Khorasan Razavi province. Results and Discussion: Input parameters of hydrologic models are seldomknown with certainty. Therefore, they are not capable ofdescribing the exact hydrologic processes. Input data andstructural uncertainties related to scale and approximationsin system processes are different sources of uncertainty thatmake it difficult to model exact hydrologic phenomena.In automatic calibration, the parameter values dependon the objective function of the search or optimization algorithm.In characterizing a runoff hydrograph, threecharacteristics of time-to-peak, peak of discharge and totalrunoff volume are of the most importance. It is thereforeimportant that we simulate and observe hydrographs matchas much as possible in terms of those characteristics. Calibration was carried out in single objective cases. Model calibration in single-objective approach with regard to the objective function in the event of NASH and RMSE were conducted separately.The results indicated that the capability of the model was calibrated to an acceptable level of events. Continuing calibration results were evaluated by four different criteria.Finally, to validate the model parameters with those obtained from the calibration, tests perfomed indicated poor results. Although, based on the calibration and verification of individual events one event remains, suggesting set is a possible parameter. Conclusion: All events were evaluated by validations and the

  17. Color Feature-Based Object Tracking through Particle Swarm Optimization with Improved Inertia Weight. (United States)

    Guo, Siqiu; Zhang, Tao; Song, Yulong; Qian, Feng


    This paper presents a particle swarm tracking algorithm with improved inertia weight based on color features. The weighted color histogram is used as the target feature to reduce the contribution of target edge pixels in the target feature, which makes the algorithm insensitive to the target non-rigid deformation, scale variation, and rotation. Meanwhile, the influence of partial obstruction on the description of target features is reduced. The particle swarm optimization algorithm can complete the multi-peak search, which can cope well with the object occlusion tracking problem. This means that the target is located precisely where the similarity function appears multi-peak. When the particle swarm optimization algorithm is applied to the object tracking, the inertia weight adjustment mechanism has some limitations. This paper presents an improved method. The concept of particle maturity is introduced to improve the inertia weight adjustment mechanism, which could adjust the inertia weight in time according to the different states of each particle in each generation. Experimental results show that our algorithm achieves state-of-the-art performance in a wide range of scenarios.

  18. Retrospective cues based on object features improve visual working memory performance in older adults. (United States)

    Gilchrist, Amanda L; Duarte, Audrey; Verhaeghen, Paul


    Research with younger adults has shown that retrospective cues can be used to orient top-down attention toward relevant items in working memory. We examined whether older adults could take advantage of these cues to improve memory performance. Younger and older adults were presented with visual arrays of five colored shapes; during maintenance, participants were presented either with an informative cue based on an object feature (here, object shape or color) that would be probed, or with an uninformative, neutral cue. Although older adults were less accurate overall, both age groups benefited from the presentation of an informative, feature-based cue relative to a neutral cue. Surprisingly, we also observed differences in the effectiveness of shape versus color cues and their effects upon post-cue memory load. These results suggest that older adults can use top-down attention to remove irrelevant items from visual working memory, provided that task-relevant features function as cues.

  19. Single-shot color fringe projection for three-dimensional shape measurement of objects with discontinuities. (United States)

    Dai, Meiling; Yang, Fujun; He, Xiaoyuan


    A simple but effective fringe projection profilometry is proposed to measure 3D shape by using one snapshot color sinusoidal fringe pattern. One color fringe pattern encoded with a sinusoidal fringe (as red component) and one uniform intensity pattern (as blue component) is projected by a digital video projector, and the deformed fringe pattern is recorded by a color CCD camera. The captured color fringe pattern is separated into its RGB components and division operation is applied to red and blue channels to reduce the variable reflection intensity. Shape information of the tested object is decoded by applying an arcsine algorithm on the normalized fringe pattern with subpixel resolution. In the case of fringe discontinuities caused by height steps, or spatially isolated surfaces, the separated blue component is binarized and used for correcting the phase demodulation. A simple and robust method is also introduced to compensate for nonlinear intensity response of the digital video projector. The experimental results demonstrate the validity of the proposed method.

  20. Defending a single object against an attacker trying to detect a subset of false targets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Peng, R.; Zhai, Q.Q.; Levitin, G.


    Deployment of false targets can be a very important and effective measure for enhancing the survivability of an object subjected to intentional attacks. Existing papers have assumed that false targets are either perfect or can be detected with a constant probability. In practice, the attacker may allocate part of its budget into intelligence actions trying to detect a subset of false targets. Analogously, the defender can allocate part of its budget into disinformation actions to prevent the false targets from being detected. In this paper, the detection probability of each false target is assumed to be a function of the intelligence and disinformation efforts allocated on the false target. The optimal resource distribution between target identification/disinformation and attack/protection efforts is studied as solutions of a non-cooperative two period min–max game between the two competitors for the case of constrained defense and attack resources. - Highlights: • A defense-attack problem is studied as a two-period min–max game. • Both intelligence contest over false targets and impact contest are considered. • Optimal defense and attack strategies are investigated with different parameters.

  1. Monte Carlo Simulations for the Detection of Buried Objects Using Single Sided Backscattered Radiation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mary Yip

    Full Text Available Detection of buried improvised explosive devices (IEDs is a delicate task, leading to a need to develop sensitive stand-off detection technology. The shape, composition and size of the IEDs can be expected to be revised over time in an effort to overcome increasingly sophisticated detection methods. As an example, for the most part, landmines are found through metal detection which has led to increasing use of non-ferrous materials such as wood or plastic containers for chemical based explosives being developed.Monte Carlo simulations have been undertaken considering three different commercially available detector materials (hyperpure-Ge (HPGe, lanthanum(III bromide (LaBr and thallium activated sodium iodide (NaI(Tl, applied at a stand-off distance of 50 cm from the surface and burial depths of 0, 5 and 10 cm, with sand as the obfuscating medium. Target materials representing medium density wood and mild steel have been considered. Each detector has been modelled as a 10 cm thick cylinder with a 20 cm diameter.It appears that HPGe represents the most promising detector for this application. Although it was not the highest density material studied, its excellent energy resolving capability leads to the highest quality spectra from which detection decisions can be inferred.The simulation work undertaken here suggests that a vehicle-born threat detection system could be envisaged using a single betatron and a series of detectors operating in parallel observing the space directly in front of the vehicle path. Furthermore, results show that non-ferrous materials such as wood can be effectively discerned in such remote-operated detection system, with the potential to apply a signature analysis template matching technique for real-time analysis of such data.

  2. Multi-objective Reactive Power Optimization Based on Improved Particle Swarm Algorithm (United States)

    Cui, Xue; Gao, Jian; Feng, Yunbin; Zou, Chenlu; Liu, Huanlei


    In this paper, an optimization model with the minimum active power loss and minimum voltage deviation of node and maximum static voltage stability margin as the optimization objective is proposed for the reactive power optimization problems. By defining the index value of reactive power compensation, the optimal reactive power compensation node was selected. The particle swarm optimization algorithm was improved, and the selection pool of global optimal and the global optimal of probability (p-gbest) were introduced. A set of Pareto optimal solution sets is obtained by this algorithm. And by calculating the fuzzy membership value of the pareto optimal solution sets, individuals with the smallest fuzzy membership value were selected as the final optimization results. The above improved algorithm is used to optimize the reactive power of IEEE14 standard node system. Through the comparison and analysis of the results, it has been proven that the optimization effect of this algorithm was very good.

  3. Applying different quality and safety models in healthcare improvement work: Boundary objects and system thinking

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wiig, Siri; Robert, Glenn; Anderson, Janet E.; Pietikainen, Elina; Reiman, Teemu; Macchi, Luigi; Aase, Karina


    A number of theoretical models can be applied to help guide quality improvement and patient safety interventions in hospitals. However there are often significant differences between such models and, therefore, their potential contribution when applied in diverse contexts. The aim of this paper is to explore how two such models have been applied by hospitals to improve quality and safety. We describe and compare the models: (1) The Organizing for Quality (OQ) model, and (2) the Design for Integrated Safety Culture (DISC) model. We analyze the theoretical foundations of the models, and show, by using a retrospective comparative case study approach from two European hospitals, how these models have been applied to improve quality and safety. The analysis shows that differences appear in the theoretical foundations, practical approaches and applications of the models. Nevertheless, the case studies indicate that the choice between the OQ and DISC models is of less importance for guiding the practice of quality and safety improvement work, as they are both systemic and share some important characteristics. The main contribution of the models lay in their role as boundary objects directing attention towards organizational and systems thinking, culture, and collaboration

  4. Undergraduate palliative care teaching in Swiss medical faculties: a nationwide survey and improved learning objectives. (United States)

    Eychmüller, S; Forster, M; Gudat, H; Lütolf, U M; Borasio, G D


    In 2007, a first survey on undergraduate palliative care teaching in Switzerland has revealed major heterogeneity of palliative care content, allocation of hours and distribution throughout the 6 year curriculum in Swiss medical faculties. This second survey in 2012/13 has been initiated as part of the current Swiss national strategy in palliative care (2010 - 2015) to serve as a longitudinal monitoring instrument and as a basis for redefinition of palliative care learning objectives and curriculum planning in our country. As in 2007, a questionnaire was sent to the deans of all five medical faculties in Switzerland in 2012. It consisted of eight sections: basic background information, current content and hours in dedicated palliative care blocks, current palliative care content in other courses, topics related to palliative care presented in other courses, recent attempts at improving palliative care content, palliative care content in examinations, challenges, and overall summary. Content analysis was performed and the results matched with recommendations from the EAPC for undergraduate training in palliative medicine as well as with recommendations from overseas countries. There is a considerable increase in palliative care content, academic teaching staff and hours in all medical faculties compared to 2007. No Swiss medical faculty reaches the range of 40 h dedicated specifically to palliative care as recommended by the EAPC. Topics, teaching methods, distribution throughout different years and compulsory attendance still differ widely. Based on these results, the official Swiss Catalogue of Learning Objectives (SCLO) was complemented with 12 new learning objectives for palliative and end of life care (2013), and a national basic script for palliative care was published (2015). Performing periodic surveys of palliative care teaching at national medical faculties has proven to be a useful tool to adapt the national teaching framework and to improve the

  5. Improved single-strand DNA sizing accuracy in capillary electrophoresis.


    Rosenblum, B B; Oaks, F; Menchen, S; Johnson, B


    Interpolation algorithms can be developed to size unknown single-stranded (ss) DNA fragments based on their electrophoretic mobilities, when they are compared with the mobilities of standard fragments of known sizes; however, sequence-specific anomalous electrophoretic migration can affect the accuracy and precision of the called sizes of the fragments. We used the anomalous migration of ssDNA fragments to optimize denaturation conditions for capillary electrophoresis. The capillary electroph...

  6. Improvement of Torque Production in Single-Phase Induction Motors

    African Journals Online (AJOL)


    and at steady state, they produce a significant level of torque pulsations which gives rise to noise and vibration in the machine. As part of efforts to mitigate these problems, a performance improvement strategy using a PWM inverter to drive the existing motor is implemented in MATLAB/Simulink environment in this work.

  7. Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) Improves Perceived Readiness for Clinical Placement in Nutrition and Dietetic Students. (United States)

    Farahat, Elaf; Rice, Gail; Daher, Noha; Heine, Nancy; Schneider, Louise; Connell, Bert


    It is increasingly difficult to provide adequate clinical training for new dietetics graduates. Dietetic students obtain clinical experience by visiting patients and viewing their charts in hospital settings but rarely counsel them. To examine the change in nutrition and dietetic students' perceived readiness to practice after completing three Objective Structured Clinical Examinations (OSCE). 37 students (mean age 26.6±5.4 yrs, 95% female) from the Schools of Public Health and Allied Health Professions enrolled in a medical nutrition therapy course. Using a pre-post test design, 37 students completed the first 3 weeks of the laboratory section of the course at the medical center, followed by 3 weeks of OSCE. OSCE stations included reviewing a chart, counseling a standardized patient, and discussing findings with other healthcare professionals. Students answered the Perceived Readiness for Dietetic Practice questionnaire before and after the OSCE. OSCE significantly improved students' mean readiness to practice their role as clinical dietitians (4.9±2.5 vs 5.8±1.9, p=0.03). There was a significant improvement in the professional role (p=0.04) and charting (p=0.01). Students improved in all areas, but not all areas reached statistical significance. Seventy-six percent of students found the OSCE to be superior to the medical center experience, and 78% of students agreed that collaboration with other healthcare professionals helped prepare them for the dietetic role. The OSCE experience improved students' perceived clinical skills. The OSCE format can provide a realistic patient experience for dietetic students to develop their patient evaluation and counseling skills.

  8. Improving building life-cycle information management through documentation and communication of project objectives

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hitchcock, R.J.


    Most currently available computer tools for the building industry proffer little more than productivity improvement in the transmission of graphical drawings and textual specifications, without addressing more fundamental changes in building life-cycle information management. This paper describes preliminary research into the development of a framework for the documentation and communication of the project objectives of a building project. When implemented in an interactive networked environment, this framework is intended to promote multiple participant involvement in the establishment and use of a common set of explicit goals, from the earliest phase of a project throughout its life cycle. A number of potential applications for this framework are identified. The requirements for integrating this life-cycle information with a product model of the physical design of a building, in an attempt to document and communicate design intent, are also discussed.

  9. Evaluating and Improving Automatic Sleep Spindle Detection by Using Multi-Objective Evolutionary Algorithms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Min-Yin Liu


    Full Text Available Sleep spindles are brief bursts of brain activity in the sigma frequency range (11–16 Hz measured by electroencephalography (EEG mostly during non-rapid eye movement (NREM stage 2 sleep. These oscillations are of great biological and clinical interests because they potentially play an important role in identifying and characterizing the processes of various neurological disorders. Conventionally, sleep spindles are identified by expert sleep clinicians via visual inspection of EEG signals. The process is laborious and the results are inconsistent among different experts. To resolve the problem, numerous computerized methods have been developed to automate the process of sleep spindle identification. Still, the performance of these automated sleep spindle detection methods varies inconsistently from study to study. There are two reasons: (1 the lack of common benchmark databases, and (2 the lack of commonly accepted evaluation metrics. In this study, we focus on tackling the second problem by proposing to evaluate the performance of a spindle detector in a multi-objective optimization context and hypothesize that using the resultant Pareto fronts for deriving evaluation metrics will improve automatic sleep spindle detection. We use a popular multi-objective evolutionary algorithm (MOEA, the Strength Pareto Evolutionary Algorithm (SPEA2, to optimize six existing frequency-based sleep spindle detection algorithms. They include three Fourier, one continuous wavelet transform (CWT, and two Hilbert-Huang transform (HHT based algorithms. We also explore three hybrid approaches. Trained and tested on open-access DREAMS and MASS databases, two new hybrid methods of combining Fourier with HHT algorithms show significant performance improvement with F1-scores of 0.726–0.737.

  10. Multi-objective optimum design of fast tool servo based on improved differential evolution algorithm

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhu, Zhiwei; Zhou, Xiaoqin; Liu, Qiang; Zhao, Shaoxin


    The flexure-based mechanism is a promising realization of fast tool servo (FTS), and the optimum determination of flexure hinge parameters is one of the most important elements in the FTS design. This paper presents a multi-objective optimization approach to optimizing the dimension and position parameters of the flexure-based mechanism, which is based on the improved differential evolution algorithm embedding chaos and nonlinear simulated anneal algorithm. The results of optimum design show that the proposed algorithm has excellent performance and a well-balanced compromise is made between two conflicting objectives, the stroke and natural frequency of the FTS mechanism. The validation tests based on finite element analysis (FEA) show good agreement with the results obtained by using the proposed theoretical algorithm of this paper. Finally, a series of experimental tests are conducted to validate the design process and assess the performance of the FTS mechanism. The designed FTS reaches up to a stroke of 10.25 μm with at least 2 kHz bandwidth. Both of the FEA and experimental results demonstrate that the parameters of the flexure-based mechanism determined by the proposed approaches can achieve the specified performance and the proposed approach is suitable for the optimum design of FTS mechanism and of excellent performances

  11. The role of auditory cortices in the retrieval of single-trial auditory-visual object memories. (United States)

    Matusz, Pawel J; Thelen, Antonia; Amrein, Sarah; Geiser, Eveline; Anken, Jacques; Murray, Micah M


    Single-trial encounters with multisensory stimuli affect both memory performance and early-latency brain responses to visual stimuli. Whether and how auditory cortices support memory processes based on single-trial multisensory learning is unknown and may differ qualitatively and quantitatively from comparable processes within visual cortices due to purported differences in memory capacities across the senses. We recorded event-related potentials (ERPs) as healthy adults (n = 18) performed a continuous recognition task in the auditory modality, discriminating initial (new) from repeated (old) sounds of environmental objects. Initial presentations were either unisensory or multisensory; the latter entailed synchronous presentation of a semantically congruent or a meaningless image. Repeated presentations were exclusively auditory, thus differing only according to the context in which the sound was initially encountered. Discrimination abilities (indexed by d') were increased for repeated sounds that were initially encountered with a semantically congruent image versus sounds initially encountered with either a meaningless or no image. Analyses of ERPs within an electrical neuroimaging framework revealed that early stages of auditory processing of repeated sounds were affected by prior single-trial multisensory contexts. These effects followed from significantly reduced activity within a distributed network, including the right superior temporal cortex, suggesting an inverse relationship between brain activity and behavioural outcome on this task. The present findings demonstrate how auditory cortices contribute to long-term effects of multisensory experiences on auditory object discrimination. We propose a new framework for the efficacy of multisensory processes to impact both current multisensory stimulus processing and unisensory discrimination abilities later in time. © 2015 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  12. Woodland Mapping at Single-Tree Levels Using Object-Oriented Classification of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (uav) Images (United States)

    Chenari, A.; Erfanifard, Y.; Dehghani, M.; Pourghasemi, H. R.


    Remotely sensed datasets offer a reliable means to precisely estimate biophysical characteristics of individual species sparsely distributed in open woodlands. Moreover, object-oriented classification has exhibited significant advantages over different classification methods for delineation of tree crowns and recognition of species in various types of ecosystems. However, it still is unclear if this widely-used classification method can have its advantages on unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) digital images for mapping vegetation cover at single-tree levels. In this study, UAV orthoimagery was classified using object-oriented classification method for mapping a part of wild pistachio nature reserve in Zagros open woodlands, Fars Province, Iran. This research focused on recognizing two main species of the study area (i.e., wild pistachio and wild almond) and estimating their mean crown area. The orthoimage of study area was consisted of 1,076 images with spatial resolution of 3.47 cm which was georeferenced using 12 ground control points (RMSE=8 cm) gathered by real-time kinematic (RTK) method. The results showed that the UAV orthoimagery classified by object-oriented method efficiently estimated mean crown area of wild pistachios (52.09±24.67 m2) and wild almonds (3.97±1.69 m2) with no significant difference with their observed values (α=0.05). In addition, the results showed that wild pistachios (accuracy of 0.90 and precision of 0.92) and wild almonds (accuracy of 0.90 and precision of 0.89) were well recognized by image segmentation. In general, we concluded that UAV orthoimagery can efficiently produce precise biophysical data of vegetation stands at single-tree levels, which therefore is suitable for assessment and monitoring open woodlands.

  13. Performance Improvement of Single Phase Inverter using SPWM (United States)

    Gavaskar Reddy, B., Dr; Maheswari, L., Dr; Ganeswari Kale, Adi


    This paper concentrates on modelling and simulation of single phase inverter as a frequency changer modulated by Pulse Width Modulation (PWM). An inverter is a circuit that converts DC sources to AC sources. Pulse Width Modulation is a method that utilization as an approach to abatement add up to harmonic distortion in inverter circuit. The model is executed utilizing MATLAB/Simulink software with the SimPower System Block Set in light of PC simulation. PC simulation assumes an imperative part in the plan, investigation, and assessment of force electronic converter and their controller. MATLAB is a successful instrument to examine a PWM inverter. Preferences of utilizing MATLAB are the accompanying: Faster reaction, accessibility of different simulation devices and utilitarian squares and the nonappearance of joining issues. Safe-replacement methodology need be actualized is to explain exchanging Transients. In this way, Insulated Gate Bipolar Transistor (IGBT) is use as exchanging gadgets. IGBT is ideal since it is anything but difficult to control and low misfortunes. The outcome from Simulink was checked utilizing MATLAB simulation.

  14. Whisking Kinematics Enables Object Localization in Head-Centered Coordinates Based on Tactile Information from a Single Vibrissa. (United States)

    Yang, Anne E T; Hartmann, Mitra J Z


    During active tactile exploration with their whiskers (vibrissae), rodents can rapidly orient to an object even though there are very few proprioceptors in the whisker muscles. Thus a long-standing question in the study of the vibrissal system is how the rat can localize an object in head-centered coordinates without muscle-based proprioception. We used a three-dimensional model of whisker bending to simulate whisking motions against a peg to investigate the possibility that the 3D mechanics of contact from a single whisker are sufficient for localization in head-centered coordinates. Results show that for nearly all whiskers in the array, purely tactile signals at the whisker base - as would be measured by mechanoreceptors, in whisker-centered coordinates - could be used to determine the location of a vertical peg in head-centered coordinates. Both the "roll" and the "elevation" components of whisking kinematics contribute to the uniqueness and resolution of the localization. These results offer an explanation for a behavioral study showing that rats can more accurately determine the horizontal angle of an object if one column, rather than one row, of whiskers is spared.

  15. Whisking kinematics enables object localization in head-centered coordinates based on tactile information from a single vibrissa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anne En-Tzu Yang


    Full Text Available During active tactile exploration with their whiskers (vibrissae, rodents can rapidly orient to an object even though there are very few proprioceptors in the whisker muscles. Thus a long-standing question in the study of the vibrissal system is how the rat can localize an object in head-centered coordinates without muscle-based proprioception. We used a three-dimensional model of whisker bending to simulate whisking motions against a peg to investigate the possibility that the 3D mechanics of contact from a single whisker are sufficient for localization in head-centered coordinates. Results show that, for nearly all whiskers in the array, purely tactile signals at the whisker base – as would be measured by mechanoreceptors, in whisker-centered coordinates – could be used to determine the location of a vertical peg in head-centered coordinates. Both the roll and the elevation components of whisking kinematics contribute to the uniqueness and resolution of the localization. These results offer an explanation for a behavioral study showing that rats can more accurately determine the horizontal angle of an object if one column, rather than one row, of whiskers is spared.

  16. An Improved Genetic Algorithm for Single-Machine Inverse Scheduling Problem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jianhui Mou


    Full Text Available The goal of the scheduling is to arrange operations on suitable machines with optimal sequence for corresponding objectives. In order to meet market requirements, scheduling systems must own enough flexibility against uncertain events. These events can change production status or processing parameters, even causing the original schedule to no longer be optimal or even to be infeasible. Traditional scheduling strategies, however, cannot cope with these cases. Therefore, a new idea of scheduling called inverse scheduling has been proposed. In this paper, the inverse scheduling with weighted completion time (SMISP is considered in a single-machine shop environment. In this paper, an improved genetic algorithm (IGA with a local searching strategy is proposed. To improve the performance of IGA, efficient encoding scheme, fitness evaluation mechanism, feasible initialization methods, and a local search procedure have been employed in the paper. Because of the local improving method, the proposed IGA can balance its exploration ability and exploitation ability. We adopt 27 instances to verify the effectiveness of the proposed algorithm. The experimental results illustrated that the proposed algorithm can generate satisfactory solutions. This approach also has been applied to solve the scheduling problem in the real Chinese shipyard and can bring some benefits.

  17. Catalogue of Interactive Learning Objectives to improve an Integrated Medical and Dental Curriculum. (United States)

    Mahmoodi, Benjamin; Sagheb, K; Sagheb, Ka; Schulz, P; Willershausen, B; Al-Nawas, B; Walter, C


    Online learning media are increasingly being incorporated into medical and dental education. However, the coordination between obligatory and facultative teaching domains still remains unsatisfying. The Catalogue of Interactive Learning Objectives of the University Clinic of Mainz (ILKUM), aims to offer knowledge transfer for students while being mindful of their individual qualifications. Its hierarchical structure is designed according to the Association for Dental Education in Europe (ADEE) levels of competence. The ILKUM was designed to establish a stronger interconnection between already existing and prospective learning strategies. All contents are linked to the current lectures as well as to e-learning modules, e.g., clinical case studies and OR videos. Students can conduct self-examinations regarding specific learning objectives. Since 2007, ILKUM has been developed and analyzed regarding its acceptance among dental students. These improved e-learning techniques foster time and location-independent access to study materials and allow an estimation of the knowledge achieved by students. Surveys of our students clearly show a large demand for upgrading ILKUM content (89%; n = 172) with integrated self-testing (89%; n = 174). In parallel to the advancement of our e-learning offering, a portion of internet-based learning is constantly rising among students. The broad acceptance and demand for the development of ILKUM show its potential. Moreover, ILKUM grants fast, topic-oriented querying of learning content without time and locale limitations as well as direct determination of the individually needed knowledge conditions. The long-term goal of the ILKUM project is to be a sustainable, important additional modality of teaching and training for dental and medical students.

  18. Multi-objective optimization in spatial planning: Improving the effectiveness of multi-objective evolutionary algorithms (non-dominated sorting genetic algorithm II) (United States)

    Karakostas, Spiros


    The multi-objective nature of most spatial planning initiatives and the numerous constraints that are introduced in the planning process by decision makers, stakeholders, etc., synthesize a complex spatial planning context in which the concept of solid and meaningful optimization is a unique challenge. This article investigates new approaches to enhance the effectiveness of multi-objective evolutionary algorithms (MOEAs) via the adoption of a well-known metaheuristic: the non-dominated sorting genetic algorithm II (NSGA-II). In particular, the contribution of a sophisticated crossover operator coupled with an enhanced initialization heuristic is evaluated against a series of metrics measuring the effectiveness of MOEAs. Encouraging results emerge for both the convergence rate of the evolutionary optimization process and the occupation of valuable regions of the objective space by non-dominated solutions, facilitating the work of spatial planners and decision makers. Based on the promising behaviour of both heuristics, topics for further research are proposed to improve their effectiveness.

  19. Medical students' perception of objective structured clinical examination: a feedback for process improvement. (United States)

    Nasir, Abdulrasheed A; Yusuf, Ayodeji S; Abdur-Rahman, Lukman O; Babalola, Olasunkanmi M; Adeyeye, Ademola A; Popoola, Ademola A; Adeniran, James O


    Medical educators have always been desirous of the best methods for formative and summative evaluation of trainees. The Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) is an approach for student assessment in which aspects of clinical competence are evaluated in a comprehensive, consistent, and structured manner with close attention to the objectivity of the process. Though popular in most medical schools globally, its use in Nigeria medical schools appears limited. This study was conceived to explore students' perception about the acceptability of OSCE process and to provide feedback to be used to improve the assessment technique. A cross-sectional survey was conducted on final-year medical students, who participated in the final MBBS surgery examination in June 2011. A 19-item self-administered structured questionnaire was employed to obtain relevant data on demographics of respondents and questions evaluating the OSCE stations in terms of the quality of instructions and organization, learning opportunities, authenticity and transparency of the process, and usefulness of the OSCE as an assessment instrument compared with other formats. Students' responses were based on a 5-point Likert scales ranging from strongly disagree to strongly agree. The data were analyzed using SPSS, version 15 (SPSS, Inc, Chicago, IL). The study took place at the University of Ilorin, College of Health Science. A total of 187 final-year medical students were enrolled in to the survey. Of 187 eligible students, 151 completed the self-administered questionnaire representing 80.7% response rate. A total of 61 (40.4%) students felt that it was easy to understand written instructions at the OSCE stations. In total, 106 (70.2%) students felt that the time allocated to each station was adequate. A total of 89 (58.9%) students agreed that the OSCE accurately measured their knowledge and skill, and 85 (56.3%) reported that OSCE enhanced their communication skill. Of the respondents, 80 (53

  20. Multi-objective optimal design of magnetorheological engine mount based on an improved non-dominated sorting genetic algorithm (United States)

    Zheng, Ling; Duan, Xuwei; Deng, Zhaoxue; Li, Yinong


    A novel flow-mode magneto-rheological (MR) engine mount integrated a diaphragm de-coupler and the spoiler plate is designed and developed to isolate engine and the transmission from the chassis in a wide frequency range and overcome the stiffness in high frequency. A lumped parameter model of the MR engine mount in single degree of freedom system is further developed based on bond graph method to predict the performance of the MR engine mount accurately. The optimization mathematical model is established to minimize the total of force transmissibility over several frequency ranges addressed. In this mathematical model, the lumped parameters are considered as design variables. The maximum of force transmissibility and the corresponding frequency in low frequency range as well as individual lumped parameter are limited as constraints. The multiple interval sensitivity analysis method is developed to select the optimized variables and improve the efficiency of optimization process. An improved non-dominated sorting genetic algorithm (NSGA-II) is used to solve the multi-objective optimization problem. The synthesized distance between the individual in Pareto set and the individual in possible set in engineering is defined and calculated. A set of real design parameters is thus obtained by the internal relationship between the optimal lumped parameters and practical design parameters for the MR engine mount. The program flowchart for the improved non-dominated sorting genetic algorithm (NSGA-II) is given. The obtained results demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed optimization approach in minimizing the total of force transmissibility over several frequency ranges addressed.

  1. Improving city transport with the objective to reduce CO2 emissions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marjan STERNAD


    Full Text Available In the past few years traffic volume is increasing. As a consequence, negative external traffic effects are increasing too, in particular CO2 emissions, which result in global warming and climate changes. CO2 emissions, a by-product of vehicles are much higher in cities due to traffic density. According to European standards, Celje is not a large city; however its traffic poses a great problem that the city authorities will soon be confronted with. This paper focuses on the city centre of Celje, where traffic flow was measured and CO2 emissions calculated. Using alternative solutions the aim was to present impacts on the environment in the municipality of Celje in an event of changed traffic regimes. In order to reach the guidelines of sustainable transport development in the municipality of Celje, in the future, different measures for reducing negative external effects of city transport will have to be put into force, for only this way the quality of city life can be improved and compatibility of environmental, economic and social objectives provided.

  2. Automated single-trial assessment of laser-evoked potentials as an objective functional diagnostic tool for the nociceptive system. (United States)

    Hatem, S M; Hu, L; Ragé, M; Gierasimowicz, A; Plaghki, L; Bouhassira, D; Attal, N; Iannetti, G D; Mouraux, A


    To assess the clinical usefulness of an automated analysis of event-related potentials (ERPs). Nociceptive laser-evoked potentials (LEPs) and non-nociceptive somatosensory electrically-evoked potentials (SEPs) were recorded in 37 patients with syringomyelia and 21 controls. LEP and SEP peak amplitudes and latencies were estimated using a single-trial automated approach based on time-frequency wavelet filtering and multiple linear regression, as well as a conventional approach based on visual inspection. The amplitudes and latencies of normal and abnormal LEP and SEP peaks were identified reliably using both approaches, with similar sensitivity and specificity. Because the automated approach provided an unbiased solution to account for average waveforms where no ERP could be identified visually, it revealed significant differences between patients and controls that were not revealed using the visual approach. The automated analysis of ERPs characterized reliably and objectively LEP and SEP waveforms in patients. The automated single-trial analysis can be used to characterize normal and abnormal ERPs with a similar sensitivity and specificity as visual inspection. While this does not justify its use in a routine clinical setting, the technique could be useful to avoid observer-dependent biases in clinical research. Copyright © 2012 International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Altering Reservoir Wettability to Improve Production from Single Wells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    W. W. Weiss


    Many carbonate reservoirs are naturally fractured and typically produce less than 10% original oil in place during primary recovery. Spontaneous imbibition has proven an important mechanism for oil recovery from fractured reservoirs, which are usually weak waterflood candidates. In some situations, chemical stimulation can promote imbibition of water to alter the reservoir wettability toward water-wetness such that oil is produced at an economic rate from the rock matrix into fractures. In this project, cores and fluids from five reservoirs were used in laboratory tests: the San Andres formation (Fuhrman Masho and Eagle Creek fields) in the Permian Basin of Texas and New Mexico; and the Interlake, Stony Mountain, and Red River formations from the Cedar Creek Anticline in Montana and South Dakota. Solutions of nonionic, anionic, and amphoteric surfactants with formation water were used to promote waterwetness. Some Fuhrman Masho cores soaked in surfactant solution had improved oil recovery up to 38%. Most Eagle Creek cores did not respond to any of the tested surfactants. Some Cedar Creek anticline cores had good response to two anionic surfactants (CD 128 and A246L). The results indicate that cores with higher permeability responded better to the surfactants. The increased recovery is mainly ascribed to increased water-wetness. It is suspected that rock mineralogy is also an important factor. The laboratory work generated three field tests of the surfactant soak process in the West Fuhrman Masho San Andres Unit. The flawlessly designed tests included mechanical well clean out, installation of new pumps, and daily well tests before and after the treatments. Treatments were designed using artificial intelligence (AI) correlations developed from 23 previous surfactant soak treatments. The treatments were conducted during the last quarter of 2006. One of the wells produced a marginal volume of incremental oil through October. It is interesting to note that the field

  4. Single-layer centrifugation through colloid selects improved quality of epididymal cat sperm. (United States)

    Chatdarong, K; Thuwanut, P; Morrell, J M


    The objectives were to determine the: 1) extent of epithelial and red blood cell contamination in epididymal cat sperm samples recovered by the cutting method; 2) efficacy of simple washing, single-layer centrifugation (SLC), and swim-up for selecting epididymal cat sperm; and 3) effects of freezing and thawing on cat sperm selected by various techniques. Ten unit samples were studied; each contained sperm from the cauda epididymides of four cats (total, approximately 200 x 10(6) sperm) and was equally allocated into four treatments: 1) simple washing, 2) single-layer centrifugation through colloid prior to cryopreservation (SLC-PC), 3) single-layer centrifugation through colloid after cryopreservation (SLC-AC), and 4) swim-up. Centrifugation (300 x g for 20 min) was done for all methods. The SLC-PC had a better recovery rate than the SLC-AC and swim-up methods (mean+/-SD of 16.4+/-8.7, 10.7+/-8.9, and 2.3+/-1.7%, respectively; Pblood cell contamination than simple washed samples (0.02+/-0.01, 0.02+/-0.04, 0.03+/-0.04, and 0.44+/-0.22 x 10(6) cells/mL, respectively; P0.05), SLC-PC yielded the highest percentage of sperm with normal midpieces and tails (P0.05). In conclusion, both SLC-PC and swim-up improved the quality of epididymal cat sperm, including better morphology, membrane and DNA integrity, and removal of cellular contamination. However, SLC had a better sperm recovery rate than swim-up. 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Algorithm for extracting multiple object waves without Fourier transform from a single image recorded by spatial frequency-division multiplexing and its application to digital holography (United States)

    Tahara, Tatsuki; Akamatsu, Takanori; Arai, Yasuhiko; Shimobaba, Tomoyoshi; Ito, Tomoyoshi; Kakue, Takashi


    We propose a novel algorithm that does not require any Fourier transform to extract multiple object waves in a single image recorded with spatial frequency-division multiplexing. Smoothing is utilized to extract the desired object-wave information from a spatially multiplexed image. Numerical and experimental results show its validity and applicability for image and Fresnel digital holography. Our investigations clarify the speeding up of both the object-wave extractions and multiple object-image reconstructions quantitatively.

  6. High Resolution Bathymetry Estimation Improvement with Single Image Super-Resolution Algorithm Super-Resolution Forests (United States)


    Naval Research Laboratory Washington, DC 20375-5320 NRL/MR/5514--17-9692 High Resolution Bathymetry Estimation Improvement with Single Image Super... Single Image Super-Resolution Algorithm “Super-Resolution Forests” Dylan Einsidler,* Kristen Nock, Leslie Smith, David Bonanno, Paul Elmore, Warren Wood...release; distribution is unlimited. *Florida Atlantic University, 777 Glades Rd., Boca Raton, FL 33431 11 Leslie N. Smith (202) 767-9532 Using the single

  7. A Model for Improving the Health and Quality of Life of Single ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    A Model for Improving the Health and Quality of Life of Single Mothers in the Developing World. Rajshri Mainthia, Laura Reppart, Jim Reppart, Elizabeth C Pearce, Jordan J Cohen, James L Netterville ...

  8. How can selection of biologically inspired features improve the performance of a robust object recognition model?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Masoud Ghodrati

    Full Text Available Humans can effectively and swiftly recognize objects in complex natural scenes. This outstanding ability has motivated many computational object recognition models. Most of these models try to emulate the behavior of this remarkable system. The human visual system hierarchically recognizes objects in several processing stages. Along these stages a set of features with increasing complexity is extracted by different parts of visual system. Elementary features like bars and edges are processed in earlier levels of visual pathway and as far as one goes upper in this pathway more complex features will be spotted. It is an important interrogation in the field of visual processing to see which features of an object are selected and represented by the visual cortex. To address this issue, we extended a hierarchical model, which is motivated by biology, for different object recognition tasks. In this model, a set of object parts, named patches, extracted in the intermediate stages. These object parts are used for training procedure in the model and have an important role in object recognition. These patches are selected indiscriminately from different positions of an image and this can lead to the extraction of non-discriminating patches which eventually may reduce the performance. In the proposed model we used an evolutionary algorithm approach to select a set of informative patches. Our reported results indicate that these patches are more informative than usual random patches. We demonstrate the strength of the proposed model on a range of object recognition tasks. The proposed model outperforms the original model in diverse object recognition tasks. It can be seen from the experiments that selected features are generally particular parts of target images. Our results suggest that selected features which are parts of target objects provide an efficient set for robust object recognition.

  9. Improving Quality in Object-Oriented Software. Systematic Refinement and Translation of Models to Code


    Bunse, C.; Atkinson, C.


    The reliable attainment of quality requirements is still a major weakness of the object-oriented development paradigm, with a significant proportion of object-oriented systems either failing to work correctly, or failing to do so in a way that meets non-functional requirements. One of the main reasons for this problem is the discrepancy between the various object-oriented languages/notations typically used during the course of an object-oriented project and the lack of well-defined mappings b...

  10. Comparison of single distance phase retrieval algorithms by considering different object composition and the effect of statistical and structural noise. (United States)

    Chen, R C; Rigon, L; Longo, R


    Phase retrieval is a technique for extracting quantitative phase information from X-ray propagation-based phase-contrast tomography (PPCT). In this paper, the performance of different single distance phase retrieval algorithms will be investigated. The algorithms are herein called phase-attenuation duality Born Algorithm (PAD-BA), phase-attenuation duality Rytov Algorithm (PAD-RA), phase-attenuation duality Modified Bronnikov Algorithm (PAD-MBA), phase-attenuation duality Paganin algorithm (PAD-PA) and phase-attenuation duality Wu Algorithm (PAD-WA), respectively. They are all based on phase-attenuation duality property and on weak absorption of the sample and they employ only a single distance PPCT data. In this paper, they are investigated via simulated noise-free PPCT data considering the fulfillment of PAD property and weakly absorbing conditions, and with experimental PPCT data of a mixture sample containing absorbing and weakly absorbing materials, and of a polymer sample considering different degrees of statistical and structural noise. The simulation shows all algorithms can quantitatively reconstruct the 3D refractive index of a quasi-homogeneous weakly absorbing object from noise-free PPCT data. When the weakly absorbing condition is violated, the PAD-RA and PAD-PA/WA obtain better result than PAD-BA and PAD-MBA that are shown in both simulation and mixture sample results. When considering the statistical noise, the contrast-to-noise ratio values decreases as the photon number is reduced. The structural noise study shows that the result is progressively corrupted by ring-like artifacts with the increase of structural noise (i.e. phantom thickness). The PAD-RA and PAD-PA/WA gain better density resolution than the PAD-BA and PAD-MBA in both statistical and structural noise study.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Mustak


    Full Text Available The correction of atmospheric effects is very essential because visible bands of shorter wavelength are highly affected by atmospheric scattering especially of Rayleigh scattering. The objectives of the paper is to find out the haze values present in the all spectral bands and to correct the haze values for urban analysis. In this paper, Improved Dark Object Subtraction method of P. Chavez (1988 is applied for the correction of atmospheric haze in the Resoucesat-1 LISS-4 multispectral satellite image. Dark object Subtraction is a very simple image-based method of atmospheric haze which assumes that there are at least a few pixels within an image which should be black (% reflectance and such black reflectance termed as dark object which are clear water body and shadows whose DN values zero (0 or Close to zero in the image. Simple Dark Object Subtraction method is a first order atmospheric correction but Improved Dark Object Subtraction method which tends to correct the Haze in terms of atmospheric scattering and path radiance based on the power law of relative scattering effect of atmosphere. The haze values extracted using Simple Dark Object Subtraction method for Green band (Band2, Red band (Band3 and NIR band (band4 are 40, 34 and 18 but the haze values extracted using Improved Dark Object Subtraction method are 40, 18.02 and 11.80 for aforesaid bands. Here it is concluded that the haze values extracted by Improved Dark Object Subtraction method provides more realistic results than Simple Dark Object Subtraction method.

  12. Improving performance of single-path code through a time-predictable memory hierarchy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cilku, Bekim; Puffitsch, Wolfgang; Prokesch, Daniel


    . The single-path code generation overcomes these problems by generating time-predictable code that has a single execution trace. However, the simplicity of this approach comes at the cost of longer execution times. This paper addresses performance improvements for single-path code. We propose a time......-predictable memory hierarchy with a prefetcher that exploits the predictability of execution traces in single-path code to speed up code execution. The new memory hierarchy reduces both the cache-miss penalty time and the cache-miss rate on the instruction cache. The benefit of the approach is demonstrated through...

  13. Improving object segmentation by using EEG signals and rapid serial visual presentation


    Mohedano, Eva; Healy, Graham; McGuinness, Kevin; Giró-i-Nieto, Xavier; O'Connor, Noel E.; Smeaton, Alan F.


    This paper extends our previous work on the potential of EEG-based brain computer interfaces to segment salient objects in images. The proposed system analyzes the Event Related Potentials (ERP) generated by the rapid serial visual presentation of windows on the image. The detection of the P300 signal allows estimating a saliency map of the image, which is used to seed a semi-supervised object segmentation algorithm. Thanks to the new contributions presented in this work, the average Jaccard ...

  14. Simple Objective Detection of Human Lyme Disease Infection Using Immuno-PCR and a Single Recombinant Hybrid Antigen (United States)

    Halpern, Micah D.; Molins, Claudia R.; Schriefer, Martin


    A serology-based tiered approach has, to date, provided the most effective means of laboratory confirmation of clinically suspected cases of Lyme disease, but it lacks sensitivity in the early stages of disease and is often dependent on subjectively scored immunoblots. We recently demonstrated the use of immuno-PCR (iPCR) for detecting Borrelia burgdorferi antibodies in patient serum samples that were positive for Lyme disease. To better understand the performance of the Lyme disease iPCR assay, the repeatability and variability of the background of the assay across samples from a healthy population (n = 36) were analyzed. Both of these parameters were found to have coefficients of variation of Lyme disease patient serum samples (n = 12) demonstrated a strong correlation with that of 2-tier testing. Furthermore, a simplified iPCR approach using a single hybrid antigen and detecting only IgG antibodies confirmed the 2-tier diagnosis in the Lyme disease patient serum samples (n = 12). Validation of the hybrid antigen IgG iPCR assay using a blinded panel of Lyme disease and non-Lyme disease patient serum samples (n = 92) resulted in a sensitivity of 69% (95% confidence interval [CI], 50% to 84%), compared to that of the 2-tier analysis at 59% (95% CI, 41% to 76%), and a specificity of 98% (95% CI, 91% to 100%) compared to that of the 2-tier analysis at 97% (95% CI, 88% to 100%). A single-tier hybrid antigen iPCR assay has the potential to be an improved method for detecting host-generated antibodies against B. burgdorferi. PMID:24899074

  15. Can Constraint Induced Movement Therapy Improve In-Hand Manipulation Skills: A Single Subject Design

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Somaye Kavousipor


    Full Text Available Objectives: This study describes a single subject design (ABA that shows the effective use of constraint induced movement therapy in improvement of quality and performance of in-hand manipulation skills for a 10 year old boy and a 9 years old girl with hemiplegic cerebral palsy, as Dickerson (2007 showed it in arm movement and function. Methods: To determine the effectiveness of CIMT by the use of C-statistic analysis and visual analysis. Approach: The first step was to design a child friendly group activity and home based intervention program through occupation. The possible effectiveness of CIMT was evaluated by daily measurements and video recording of 6 sub skills of in-hand manipulation according to Pont category (2009 in defined activity. Results: For making the treatment more cost effective, families can produce a simple clinical setting at home and participate in their child treatment plan actively. Discussion: A client center intervention will facilitate the use and quality of fingers and hand motion. Also a group activity can motivate participants to participate more and better.

  16. Does context or color improve object recognition in patients with low vision? (United States)

    Boucart, Muriel; Despretz, Pascal; Hladiuk, Katrine; Desmettre, Thomas


    Most studies on people with age-related macular degeneration (AMD) have been focused on investigations of low-level processes with simple stimuli like gratings, letters, and in perception of isolated faces or objects. We investigated the ability of people with low vision to analyze more complex stimuli like photographs of natural scenes. Fifteen participants with AMD and low vision (acuity on the better eye colored or achromatic gray level scenes in one condition and with photographs of natural scenes versus isolated objects extracted from these scenes in another condition. The photographs were centrally displayed for 300 ms. In both conditions, observers were instructed to press a key when they saw a predefined target (a face or an animal). The target was present in half of the trials. Color facilitated performance in people with low vision, while equivalent performance was found for colored and achromatic pictures in normally sighted participants. Isolated objects were categorized more accurately than objects in scenes in people with low vision. No difference was found for normally sighted observers. The results suggest that spatial properties that facilitate image segmentation (e.g., color and reduced crowding) help object perception in people with low vision.

  17. Report: Design for Objective 8.4 Could Be Improved by Reorienting Focus on Outcomes (United States)

    Report #2002-P-000002, November 21, 2001. Observations on whether the designs for Objective 8.4 and the research portions of Goal 8 were consistent with the intent of the GPRA Act, i.e., conducive to achieving outcomerelated results.

  18. Improvements of an objective model of compressed breasts undergoing mammography: Generation and characterization of breast shapes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rodriguez Ruiz, A.; Feng, S.S.J.; Zelst, J.C.M. van; Vreemann, S.; Mann, J.R.; D'Orsi, C.J.; Sechopoulos, I.


    PURPOSE: To develop a set of accurate 2D models of compressed breasts undergoing mammography or breast tomosynthesis, based on objective analysis, to accurately characterize mammograms with few linearly independent parameters, and to generate novel clinically realistic paired cranio-caudal (CC) and

  19. Improved modeling accuracy of the elastic object response by inclusion of higher order scattering

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nijhoff, M.J.J.


    Current methods of automatic target detection and classification using low- to mid- frequency sonar are based on correlating the measured Target In the Environment Response (TIER) of potential targets with the TIERs in a database of known objects. Obtaining experimental TIER measurements of proud,

  20. Improving Educational Objectives of the Industrial and Management Systems Engineering Programme at Kuwait University (United States)

    Aldowaisan, Tariq; Allahverdi, Ali


    This paper describes the process of developing programme educational objectives (PEOs) for the Industrial and Management Systems Engineering programme at Kuwait University, and the process of deployment of these PEOs. Input of the four constituents of the programme, faculty, students, alumni, and employers, is incorporated in the development and…

  1. Multi-Objective Optimization for Energy Performance Improvement of Residential Buildings: A Comparative Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kangji Li


    Full Text Available Numerous conflicting criteria exist in building design optimization, such as energy consumption, greenhouse gas emission and indoor thermal performance. Different simulation-based optimization strategies and various optimization algorithms have been developed. A few of them are analyzed and compared in solving building design problems. This paper presents an efficient optimization framework to facilitate optimization designs with the aid of commercial simulation software and MATLAB. The performances of three optimization strategies, including the proposed approach, GenOpt method and artificial neural network (ANN method, are investigated using a case study of a simple building energy model. Results show that the proposed optimization framework has competitive performances compared with the GenOpt method. Further, in another practical case, four popular multi-objective algorithms, e.g., the non-dominated sorting genetic algorithm (NSGA-II, multi-objective particle swarm optimization (MOPSO, the multi-objective genetic algorithm (MOGA and multi-objective differential evolution (MODE, are realized using the propose optimization framework and compared with three criteria. Results indicate that MODE achieves close-to-optimal solutions with the best diversity and execution time. An uncompetitive result is achieved by the MOPSO in this case study.

  2. Improving site selection in clinical studies: a standardised, objective, multistep method and first experience results. (United States)

    Hurtado-Chong, Anahí; Joeris, Alexander; Hess, Denise; Blauth, Michael


    A considerable number of clinical studies experience delays, which result in increased duration and costs. In multicentre studies, patient recruitment is among the leading causes of delays. Poor site selection can result in low recruitment and bad data quality. Site selection is therefore crucial for study quality and completion, but currently no specific guidelines are available. Selection of sites adequate to participate in a prospective multicentre cohort study was performed through an open call using a newly developed objective multistep approach. The method is based on use of a network, definition of objective criteria and a systematic screening process. Out of 266 interested sites, 24 were shortlisted and finally 12 sites were selected to participate in the study. The steps in the process included an open call through a network, use of selection questionnaires tailored to the study, evaluation of responses using objective criteria and scripted telephone interviews. At each step, the number of candidate sites was quickly reduced leaving only the most promising candidates. Recruitment and quality of data went according to expectations in spite of the contracting problems faced with some sites. The results of our first experience with a standardised and objective method of site selection are encouraging. The site selection method described here can serve as a guideline for other researchers performing multicentre studies. NCT02297581. © 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.

  3. Euclidean Position Estimation if Features on a Moving Object Using a Single Camera: A Lyapunov-Based Approach

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Chitrakaran, V. K; Dawson, D. M; Chen, J; Dixon, W. E


    .... No explicit model is used to describe the movement of the object. Homography-based techniques are used in the development of the object kinematics, while Lyapunov design methods are utilized in the synthesis of the adaptive estimator...

  4. Moderators and Mediators of Exercise-Induced Objective Sleep Improvements in Midlife and Older Adults with Sleep Complaints


    Buman, Matthew P.; Hekler, Eric B.; Bliwise, Donald L.; King, Abby C.


    Regular exercise can improve sleep quality, but for whom and by what means this occurs remain unclear. We examined moderators and mediators of objective sleep improvements in a 12-month randomized controlled trial among initially underactive midlife and older adults reporting mild/moderate sleep complaints. Participants (N=66, 67% women, 55–79 years) were randomized to moderate-intensity exercise or health education control. Putative moderators were gender, age, and baseline physical function...

  5. Cloud Computing and Multi Agent System to improve Learning Object Paradigm

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana B. Gil


    Full Text Available The paradigm of Learning Object provides Educators and Learners with the ability to access an extensive number of learning resources. To do so, this paradigm provides different technologies and tools, such as federated search platforms and storage repositories, in order to obtain information ubiquitously and on demand. However, the vast amount and variety of educational content, which is distributed among several repositories, and the existence of various and incompatible standards, technologies and interoperability layers among repositories, constitutes a real problem for the expansion of this paradigm. This study presents an agent-based architecture that uses the advantages provided by Cloud Computing platforms to deal with the open issues on the Learning Object paradigm.

  6. An Improved Multi-Objective Artificial Bee Colony Optimization Algorithm with Regulation Operators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiuyuan Huo


    Full Text Available To achieve effective and accurate optimization for multi-objective optimization problems, a multi-objective artificial bee colony algorithm with regulation operators (RMOABC inspired by the intelligent foraging behavior of honey bees was proposed in this paper. The proposed algorithm utilizes the Pareto dominance theory and takes advantage of adaptive grid and regulation operator mechanisms. The adaptive grid technique is used to adaptively assess the Pareto front maintained in an external archive and the regulation operator is used to balance the weights of the local search and the global search in the evolution of the algorithm. The performance of RMOABC was evaluated in comparison with other nature inspired algorithms includes NSGA-II and MOEA/D. The experiments results demonstrated that the RMOABC approach has better accuracy and minimal execution time.

  7. Applying Data Mining Techniques to Improve Information Security in the Cloud: A Single Cache System Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amany AlShawi


    Full Text Available Presently, the popularity of cloud computing is gradually increasing day by day. The purpose of this research was to enhance the security of the cloud using techniques such as data mining with specific reference to the single cache system. From the findings of the research, it was observed that the security in the cloud could be enhanced with the single cache system. For future purposes, an Apriori algorithm can be applied to the single cache system. This can be applied by all cloud providers, vendors, data distributors, and others. Further, data objects entered into the single cache system can be extended into 12 components. Database and SPSS modelers can be used to implement the same.

  8. Has Goldwater-Nichols Improved the United States Military’s Ability to Meet Strategic Objectives? (United States)


    respective service Chief or Statf. (3:499-505) One important point was that this act did not proviae tor a military Chairman of the Joint Chiers of Start...wanted a single point of contact in the military to provide that information to him. (7:73-75) 9 The position of Cnairman of the Joint Chiers of Staff...the Joint Chiers of Start. Goldwater-Nichois was the culmination of over three years of work by both the Senate and House of Representatives Committees

  9. Improved signal model for confocal sensors accounting for object depending artifacts. (United States)

    Mauch, Florian; Lyda, Wolfram; Gronle, Marc; Osten, Wolfgang


    The conventional signal model of confocal sensors is well established and has proven to be exceptionally robust especially when measuring rough surfaces. Its physical derivation however is explicitly based on plane surfaces or point like objects, respectively. Here we show experimental results of a confocal point sensor measurement of a surface standard. The results illustrate the rise of severe artifacts when measuring curved surfaces. On this basis, we present a systematic extension of the conventional signal model that is proven to be capable of qualitatively explaining these artifacts.

  10. Objective measures to improve the selection of training speakers in HMM-based child speech synthesis

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Govender, Avashna


    Full Text Available to those of female voices than male voices. Therefore, for the remainder of the study, only the MCD measures were used. TABLE III: Objective measures calculated for speaker inde- pendent models Voice Average MCD [db] Average RMSE logF0 [cent] bdl rms 2....11 68 bdl clb 2.22 31 bdl slt 2.36 36 rms clb 1.79 45 rms slt 2.01 47 clb slt 2.05 16 Since [9] showed that the best initial model for child speech synthesis is a gender-independent model, the hypothesis tested in this study was that the closest female...

  11. Chaotic improved PSO-based multi-objective optimization for minimization of power losses and L index in power systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chen, Gonggui; Liu, Lilan; Song, Peizhu; Du, Yangwei


    Highlights: • New method for MOORPD problem using MOCIPSO and MOIPSO approaches. • Constrain-prior Pareto-dominance method is proposed to meet the constraints. • The limits of the apparent power flow of transmission line are considered. • MOORPD model is built up for MOORPD problem. • The achieved results by MOCIPSO and MOIPSO approaches are better than MOPSO method. - Abstract: Multi-objective optimal reactive power dispatch (MOORPD) seeks to not only minimize power losses, but also improve the stability of power system simultaneously. In this paper, the static voltage stability enhancement is achieved through incorporating L index in MOORPD problem. Chaotic improved PSO-based multi-objective optimization (MOCIPSO) and improved PSO-based multi-objective optimization (MOIPSO) approaches are proposed for solving complex multi-objective, mixed integer nonlinear problems such as minimization of power losses and L index in power systems simultaneously. In MOCIPSO and MOIPSO based optimization approaches, crossover operator is proposed to enhance PSO diversity and improve their global searching capability, and for MOCIPSO based optimization approach, chaotic sequences based on logistic map instead of random sequences is introduced to PSO for enhancing exploitation capability. In the two approaches, constrain-prior Pareto-dominance method (CPM) is proposed to meet the inequality constraints on state variables, the sorting and crowding distance methods are considered to maintain a well distributed Pareto optimal solutions, and moreover, fuzzy set theory is employed to extract the best compromise solution over the Pareto optimal curve. The proposed approaches have been examined and tested in the IEEE 30 bus and the IEEE 57 bus power systems. The performances of MOCIPSO, MOIPSO, and multi-objective PSO (MOPSO) approaches are compared with respect to multi-objective performance measures. The simulation results are promising and confirm the ability of MOCIPSO and

  12. Contextual Learning Mediated with Real Objects on Multiplication and division to Improve Motivation and Learning Outcomes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sri Lestari


    Full Text Available Pembelajaran Kontekstual Bermedia Objek Nyata pada Perkalian dan Pembagian untuk Meningkatkan Motivasi dan Hasil Belajar   Abstract: The purpose of the study is to describe the implemtation of contextual learning real object of media on multiplication and division to increase motivation and learning outcomes of students fourth B grade at primary school Poncokusumo 01. The design of the study used action research. Collected data through were interviews, observations, questionnaires, and tests. The results of the study of 20 students, which was students’ motivation under the category of Good or Very Good in cycle I was 73,75%, in cycle II was 97,5%, increased to 23,75%. The average pre-action study was 58, student completed their 40%, in cycle I was 70%, in cycle II was 76,9, student completed 85%. Key Words: contextual learning, real object of media, motivation, learning outcome   Abstrak: Tujuan penelitian adalah mendeskripsikan penerapan  pembelajaran kontekstual bermedia objek nyata pada perkalian dan pembagian untuk meningkatkan motivasi dan hasil belajar siswa kelas IVB SDN Poncokusumo 01. Rancangan penelitian menggunakan penelitian tindakan kelas. Pengumpulan data melalui wawancara, observasi, angket, dan tes. Hasil penelitian dari 20 siswa, pada siklus I siswa yang bermotivasi pada kategori baik atau sangat baik 73,75%, siklus II 97,5% meningkat  23,75%. Rata-rata hasil belajar pra tindakan 58, ketuntasan 40%, siklus I 70%, siklus II 76,9% ketuntasan 85%. Kata kunci: pembelajaran kontekstual, media objek nyata, motivasi, hasil belajar


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R.T. Saygitov


    Full Text Available Traditionally, efficacy of treating allergic rhinitis (AR in children is evaluated on the basis of subjective and objective criteria connected with the more or less express character of symptoms. At the same time, there are all reasons to say that the evaluation of the quality of life (QOL of a child more fully reflects his health than sole consideration of AR symptoms. As a result, the change of QOL in the course of treating AR may more precisely reflect the efficacy of illness treatment. This is especially noticeable when analyzing the results of treatment with the use of sedative antihistamine drugs, which arrest AR symptoms but exert a negative influence over the QOL indicators, such as activity, learning ability, social adaptation. New generation antihistamine drugs and intranasal corticosteroids do not have such influence over children's QOL. moreover, their regular use may help in decreasing the risk of development bronchial asthma and atopic dermatitis in children, which is another objective of AR therapy.Key words: children, quality of life, allergic rhinitis, treatment.

  14. An Algorithm for Improving the Accuracy of Systems Measuring Parameters of Moving Objects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dichev Dimitar


    Full Text Available The paper considers an algorithm for increasing the accuracy of measuring systems operating on moving objects. The algorithm is based on the Kalman filter. It aims to provide a high measurement accuracy for the whole range of change of the measured quantity and the interference effects, as well as to eliminate the influence of a number of interference sources, each of which is of secondary importance but their total impact can cause a considerable distortion of the measuring signal. The algorithm is intended for gyro-free measuring systems. It is based on a model of the moving object dynamics. The mathematical model is developed in such a way that it enables to automatically adjust the algorithm parameters depending on the current state of measurement conditions. This makes possible to develop low-cost measuring systems with a high dynamic accuracy. The presented experimental results prove effectiveness of the proposed algorithm in terms of the dynamic accuracy of measuring systems of that type.

  15. On the Improvement of Convergence Performance for Integrated Design of Wind Turbine Blade Using a Vector Dominating Multi-objective Evolution Algorithm (United States)

    Wang, L.; Wang, T. G.; Wu, J. H.; Cheng, G. P.


    A novel multi-objective optimization algorithm incorporating evolution strategies and vector mechanisms, referred as VD-MOEA, is proposed and applied in aerodynamic- structural integrated design of wind turbine blade. In the algorithm, a set of uniformly distributed vectors is constructed to guide population in moving forward to the Pareto front rapidly and maintain population diversity with high efficiency. For example, two- and three- objective designs of 1.5MW wind turbine blade are subsequently carried out for the optimization objectives of maximum annual energy production, minimum blade mass, and minimum extreme root thrust. The results show that the Pareto optimal solutions can be obtained in one single simulation run and uniformly distributed in the objective space, maximally maintaining the population diversity. In comparison to conventional evolution algorithms, VD-MOEA displays dramatic improvement of algorithm performance in both convergence and diversity preservation for handling complex problems of multi-variables, multi-objectives and multi-constraints. This provides a reliable high-performance optimization approach for the aerodynamic-structural integrated design of wind turbine blade.

  16. Lip muscle training improves obstructive sleep apnea and objective sleep: a case report

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hiroshi Suzuki

    Full Text Available The present study assessed the potential of lip muscle training for improving sleep. A patient with heavy snoring, daytime sleepiness and dry mouth underwent lip muscle training. Lip closure force LCFmax increased by 67.3% and LCFmin by 152% post-training. AHI decreased from 12.2 to 3.9 events/h by reducing hypopneic episodes. TST, sleep stage N3 and REM sleep increased, and WASO, sleep stage N1, and AI decreased. The patient switched from mouth to nose breathing during sleep and stopped snoring. Improved LCF, by moving the tongue into the anterior-superior oral cavity, may increase upper airway space and reduce the hypopnea index.

  17. Liraglutide promotes improvements in objective measures of cognitive dysfunction in individuals with mood disorders

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mansur, Rodrigo B; Ahmed, Juhie; Cha, Danielle S


    BACKGROUND: There is a paucity of treatments that are capable of reliably and robustly improving cognitive function in adults with mood disorders. Glucagon-like peptide-1 is synthesized centrally and its receptors are abundantly expressed in neural circuits subserving cognitive function. We aimed....... There was a significant increase in lipase (psize, open-label design, lack of a placebo group. CONCLUSIONS: Liraglutide was safe and well tolerated by a sample of non-diabetic individuals with mood disorders and had...

  18. Veterans Health Care: Improvements Needed in Operationalizing Strategic Goals and Objectives (United States)


    America , and Paralyzed Veterans of America . 17GAO, Standards for Internal Control in the Federal Government GAO/AIMD-00-23.3.1 (Washington, D.C...progress in reducing veteran homelessness , improving the employee experience, staffing critical positions, transforming Office of Information...organizational health indicators that are necessary for a successful health care delivery system. 36The other priority goal is reducing the number of homeless

  19. Improving the strength of additively manufactured objects via modified interior structure (United States)

    Al, Can Mert; Yaman, Ulas


    Additive manufacturing (AM), in other words 3D printing, is becoming more common because of its crucial advantages such as geometric complexity, functional interior structures, etc. over traditional manufacturing methods. Especially, Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF) 3D printing technology is frequently used because of the fact that desktop variants of these types of printers are highly appropriate for different fields and are improving rapidly. In spite of the fact that there are significant advantages of AM, the strength of the parts fabricated with AM is still a major problem especially when plastic materials, such as Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), Polylactic acid (PLA), Nylon, etc., are utilized. In this study, an alternative method is proposed in which the strength of AM fabricated parts is improved employing direct slicing approach. Traditional Computer Aided Manufacturing (CAM) software of 3D printers takes only the geometry as an input in triangular mesh form (stereolithography, STL file) generated by Computer Aided Design software. This file format includes data only about the outer boundaries of the geometry. Interior of the artifacts are manufactured with homogeneous infill patterns, such as diagonal, honeycomb, linear, etc. according to the paths generated in CAM software. The developed method within this study provides a way to fabricate parts with heterogeneous infill patterns by utilizing the stress field data obtained from a Finite Element Analysis software, such as ABAQUS. According to the performed tensile tests, the strength of the test specimen is improved by about 45% compared to the conventional way of 3D printing.

  20. Improving Precision of Proximity Ligation Assay by Amplified Single Molecule Detection


    Ke, Rongqin; Nong, Rachel Yuan; Fredriksson, Simon; Landegren, Ulf; Nilsson, Mats


    Proximity ligation assay (PLA) has been proven to be a robust protein detection method. The technique is characterized by high sensitivity and specificity, but the assay precision is probably limited by the PCR readout. To investigate this potential limitation and to improve precision, we developed a digital proximity ligation assay for protein measurement in fluids based on amplified single molecule detection. The assay showed significant improvements in precision, and thereby also detection...

  1. An improved single-step lysis protocol to measure luciferase bioluminescence in Plasmodium falciparum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hasenkamp Sandra


    Full Text Available Abstract This report describes the optimization and evaluation of a simple single-step lysis protocol to measure luciferase bioluminescence from genetically modified Plasmodium falciparum. This protocol utilizes a modified commercial buffer to improve speed of assay and consistency in the bioluminescence signal measured by reducing the manipulation steps required to release the cytoplasmic fraction. The utility of this improved assay protocol is demonstrated in typical assays that explore absolute and temporal gene expression activity.

  2. Improving throughput of single-relay DF channel using linear constellation precoding

    KAUST Repository

    Fareed, Muhammad Mehboob


    In this letter, we propose a transmission scheme to improve the overall throughput of a cooperative communication system with single decode-and-forward relay. Symbol error rate and throughput analysis of the new scheme are presented to facilitate the performance comparison with the existing decode-and-forward relaying schemes. Simulation results are further provided to corroborate the analytical results. © 2012 IEEE.

  3. A New and Improved Model of the Near-Earth Object Population (United States)

    Bottke, W. F., Jr.; Granvik, M.; Morbidelli, A.; Jedicke, R.; Bolin, B.; Beshore, E. C.; Vokrouhlicky, D.; Nesvorny, D.; Michel, P.


    This is a golden age for near-Earth Object (NEO) research. We have discovered some 90% of the most threatening NEOs, while ongoing surveys are finding many sub-km NEOs as well. NEO physical characterization studies by missions, space- and ground-based observatories are also revolutionizing our ideas about what NEOs are like. President Obama announced on April 15, 2010 that NASA would send astronauts to an NEA by 2025; this remains Administration policy. The Feb. 15, 2013 explosion of an NEO over Chelyabinsk, Russia, has further boosted interest in NEOs. This increasing interest, and a vast array of new data, have led us to re-investigate the debiased orbital and absolute magnitude distribution of the NEO population. Such models are asboluetly needed to make accurate predictions about NEOs that are likely exploration targets for human and robotic spacecraft. Using the methods of Bottke et al. (2002), we numerically tracked a large unbiased sample of asteroids escaping the main belt and TNO populations in order to locate all possible NEO source regions. From here, we recorded the orbital evolution of the bodies that entering the NEO region; their evolutionary pathways were used to create so-called NEO residence-time distributions. They were combined with the calculated observational selection effects for the Catalina Sky Survey, with the model fit to 4,550 NEOs (15 human missions.

  4. Optimization of Observation Strategy to Improve Re-entry Prediction of Objects in HEO (United States)

    Rasotto, M.; Di Mauro, G.; Massari, M.; Di Lizia, P.; Armellin, R.; Funke, Q.; Flohrer, T.


    During the last decade the number of space debris moving on high elliptical orbit (HEO) has grown fast. Many of these resident space objects (RSO) consist of medium and large spent upper stages of launch vehicles, whose atmosphere re-entry might violate on-ground casualty risk constraints. Increasing the accuracy of re-entry predictions for this class of RSO is therefore a key issue to limit the hazards on the Earth assets. Traditional computational methods are mainly based on the exploitation of Two Line Elements (TLEs), provided by the United States Strategic Command (USSTRATCOM) and currently the only public data source available for these kind of analyses. TLE data however, are characterized by low accuracies, and in general come without any uncertainty information, thus limiting the achievable precision of the re-entry estimates. Better results on the other hand, can be obtained through the exploitation of observational data provided by one or more Earth sensors. Despite the benefits, this approach introduces a whole new set of complexities, mainly related with the design of proper observation campaigns. This paper presents a method based on evolutionary algorithms, for the optimization of observation strategies. The effectiveness of the proposed approach is demonstrated through dedicated examples, in which re-entry predictions, attainable with existing and ideal sensor architectures, are compared with corresponding results derived from TLE data.

  5. Improving the Multi-Objective Performance of Rainwater Harvesting Systems Using Real-Time Control Technology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wei D. Xu


    Full Text Available Many studies have identified the potential of rainwater harvesting (RWH systems to simultaneously augment potable water supply and reduce delivery of uncontrolled stormwater flows to downstream drainage networks. Potentially, such systems could also play a role in the controlled delivery of water to urban streams in ways which mimic baseflows. The performance of RWH systems to achieve these three objectives could be enhanced using Real-Time Control (RTC technology to receive rainfall forecasts and initiate pre-storm release in real time, although few studies have explored such potential. We used continuous simulation to model the ability of a range of allotment-scale RWH systems to simultaneously deliver: (i water supply; (ii stormwater retention; and (iii baseflow restoration. We compared the performance of RWH systems with RTC technology to conventional RWH systems and also systems designed with a passive baseflow release, rather than the active (RTC configuration. We found that RWH systems employing RTC technology were generally superior in simultaneously achieving water supply, stormwater retention and baseflow restoration benefits compared with the other types of system tested. The active operation provided by RTC allows the system to perform optimally across a wider range of climatic conditions, but needs to be carefully designed. We conclude that the active release mechanism employing RTC technology exhibits great promise; its ability to provide centralised control and failure detection also opens the possibility of delivering a more reliable rainwater harvesting system, which can be readily adapted to varying climate over both the short and long term.

  6. Hybrid Pareto artificial bee colony algorithm for multi-objective single machine group scheduling problem with sequence-dependent setup times and learning effects. (United States)

    Yue, Lei; Guan, Zailin; Saif, Ullah; Zhang, Fei; Wang, Hao


    Group scheduling is significant for efficient and cost effective production system. However, there exist setup times between the groups, which require to decrease it by sequencing groups in an efficient way. Current research is focused on a sequence dependent group scheduling problem with an aim to minimize the makespan in addition to minimize the total weighted tardiness simultaneously. In most of the production scheduling problems, the processing time of jobs is assumed as fixed. However, the actual processing time of jobs may be reduced due to "learning effect". The integration of sequence dependent group scheduling problem with learning effects has been rarely considered in literature. Therefore, current research considers a single machine group scheduling problem with sequence dependent setup times and learning effects simultaneously. A novel hybrid Pareto artificial bee colony algorithm (HPABC) with some steps of genetic algorithm is proposed for current problem to get Pareto solutions. Furthermore, five different sizes of test problems (small, small medium, medium, large medium, large) are tested using proposed HPABC. Taguchi method is used to tune the effective parameters of the proposed HPABC for each problem category. The performance of HPABC is compared with three famous multi objective optimization algorithms, improved strength Pareto evolutionary algorithm (SPEA2), non-dominated sorting genetic algorithm II (NSGAII) and particle swarm optimization algorithm (PSO). Results indicate that HPABC outperforms SPEA2, NSGAII and PSO and gives better Pareto optimal solutions in terms of diversity and quality for almost all the instances of the different sizes of problems.

  7. [Evaluation of the maturity of a Urology Department in terms of Quality. Management and Quality improvement operative objectives]. (United States)

    Luján, Marcos; Mora, José Ramón; Pascual, Carlos; Chiva, Vicente; Diz, Manuel R; Martín, Carlos; Gamarra, Manuela; del Carmen López, Maria


    The objective of quality management is the identification of improvement areas to achieve total client and other involved agents satisfaction. In this paper we describe the start up of a Quality Improvement Plan (QIP) in a Urology Department. We assessed the current maturity and performance of the Unit by means of self-evaluation with a questionnaire adapted to the 2009 ISO 9004 standard by all the professionals in the unit (Physicians and Nurses). All the items in the questionnaire are based in attributes and evaluation lines gathered in the five chapters of the Standard. The areas of improvement were identified and specific objectives were established and collected in the QIP with indicators for their measurement, responsible individuals, chronogram and results evaluation. After implementation of the quality improvement actions, a second self-evaluation was performed to start a new cycle. After the first evaluation we observed a high global performance (61%). Analyzed by sections, the highest level was achieved in the human resources management chapter (73%) and the lowest in quality management (30%) due to the absence of a process management approach. After identification of improvement areas, we defined projects and activities to be developed, in the process management context. The second evaluation, after the implementation of process management in the unit, showed an improvement in the maturity level of the Unit, reaching an 83%. The management of a clinical department cannot be limited to continuous improvisation. A process management approach is necessary, finishing with the usual defects of the generated product (variability, errors, omissions, waiting lists). Excellence in the quality of health care is an essential objective in every healthcare organization and standardization models, such as 2009 ISO 9004 standard, are the right way for that purpose.

  8. Objective measurement of function following lumbar spinal stenosis decompression reveals improved functional capacity with stagnant real-life physical activity. (United States)

    Smuck, Matthew; Muaremi, Amir; Zheng, Patricia; Norden, Justin; Sinha, Aman; Hu, Richard; Tomkins-Lane, Christy


    Lumbar spinal stenosis (LSS) is a prevalent and costly condition associated with significant dysfunction. Alleviation of pain and improvement of function are the primary goals of surgical intervention. Although prior studies have measured subjective improvements in function after surgery, few have examined objective markers of functional improvement. We aimed to objectively measure and quantify changes in physical capacity and physical performance following surgical decompression of LSS. Prospective cohort study. Thirty-eight patients with LSS determined by the treating surgeon's clinical and imaging evaluation, and who were scheduled for surgical treatment, were consecutively recruited at two academic medical facilities, with 28 providing valid data for analysis at baseline and 6 months after surgery. Before surgery and at 6 months after surgery, participants provided 7 days of real-life physical activity (performance) using ActiGraph accelerometers; completed two objective functional capacity measures, the Short Physical Performance Battery and Self-Paced Walking Test; and completed three subjective functional outcome questionnaires, Oswestry Disability Index, Spinal Stenosis Symptom Questionnaire, and Short-Form 36. Physical activity, as measured by continuous activity monitoring, was analyzed as previously described according to the 2008 American Physical Activity Guidelines. Paired t tests were performed to assess for postsurgical changes in all questionnaire outcomes and all objective functional capacity measures. Chi-square analysis was used to categorically assess whether patients were more likely to meet these physical activity recommendations after surgery. Participants were 70.1 years old (±8.9) with 17 females (60.7%) and an average body mass index of 28.4 (±6.2). All subjective measures (Oswestry Disability Index, Spinal Stenosis Symptom Questionnaire, and Short-Form 36) improved significantly at 6 months after surgery, as did objective functional

  9. Meloxicam improves object recognition memory and modulates glial activation after splenectomy in mice. (United States)

    Kamer, Angela R; Galoyan, Samuel M; Haile, Michael; Kline, Richard; Boutajangout, Allal; Li, Yong-Sheng; Bekker, Alex


    Surgery-induced neuroinflammation has been implicated in the development of postoperative cognitive dysfunction (POCD). To test the hypothesis that meloxicam, a selective cyclooxygenase (COX)-2 inhibitor, preserves postoperative cognitive function and inhibits surgery-induced neuroinflammation in a mouse model. A mouse model of splenectomy-induced inflammation. Sixty Swiss Webster male mice (6-8 week old) were randomised into six groups that underwent splenectomy. Animals in groups 1-4 were tested once on day 1, 5, 9 or 14 to determine the time course of delayed transient cognitive dysfunction associated with splenectomy. Animals in groups 5 and 6 were tested once on day 5 or 9 to determine the ability of the NSAID meloxicam to attenuate cognitive dysfunction. Animals in groups 1-4 received one dose 500 μl intraperitoneal physiological saline 24 h after splenectomy. Animals in groups 5 and 6 received one dose of intraperitoneal meloxicam (60 mg kg in 500 μl saline) 24 h after splenectomy. Short-term working memory as determined by Object Recognition Test (ORT) index on days 1, 5, 9 and 14 was the first main outcome. Tomato lectin staining histochemistry of glial cells was assessed on days 1, 5, 9 and 14 as a second main outcome. Compared with day 1 (group 1), the mean ORT indices at day 5 (group 2) and day 9 (group 3) were decreased by 27.5% [95% confidence interval (CI): 0.9 to 54.1%, P = 0.04] and 23.8% (95% CI, 4.3 to 51.9%, P = 0.09), respectively. At day 5 (group 5) and day 9 (group 6), the ORT indices in the meloxicam groups were reduced by 6.6% (95% CI: -11.4 to 24.5%) and 4.3% (95% CI: -25.3 to 34.0). Thus, the administration of meloxicam attenuated the decrease in ORT indices (P = 0.031). Histochemical staining with tomato lectin showed features of microglia activation at day 5 and 9, which was reduced by the administration of meloxicam. These findings suggest that COX-2-dependent mechanisms may play a role in the development of POCD. This effect may be

  10. Study for Improving the Definition of the Army Objective Force Methodology, Phase II (IDOFOR II). Volume I. Executive Summary. (United States)


    produced by the methodology are expected to have a shelf life of 2 years or more. e. The improved methodology has embedded in it the capability to as...have embedded in It the capability to ascribe funding and other resources to each future objective force design considered. Cost estimates must be...Jan 80 (CONFIDENTIAL) Headquarters, US Army Material Development and Readiness Comand (DARCOM) DARCOM Pamphlet 706-102, Engineering Design Handbook

  11. Improved single particle potential for transport model simulations of nuclear reactions induced by rare isotope beams

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Xu Chang; Li Baoan


    Taking into account more accurately the isospin dependence of nucleon-nucleon interactions in the in-medium many-body force term of the Gogny effective interaction, new expressions for the single-nucleon potential and the symmetry energy are derived. Effects of both the spin (isospin) and the density dependence of nuclear effective interactions on the symmetry potential and the symmetry energy are examined. It is shown that they both play a crucial role in determining the symmetry potential and the symmetry energy at suprasaturation densities. The improved single-nucleon potential will be useful for more accurate simulation of nuclear reactions induced by rare-isotope beams within transport models.

  12. A multi-objective improved teaching-learning based optimization algorithm for unconstrained and constrained optimization problems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Venkata Rao


    Full Text Available The present work proposes a multi-objective improved teaching-learning based optimization (MO-ITLBO algorithm for unconstrained and constrained multi-objective function optimization. The MO-ITLBO algorithm is the improved version of basic teaching-learning based optimization (TLBO algorithm adapted for multi-objective problems. The basic TLBO algorithm is improved to enhance its exploration and exploitation capacities by introducing the concept of number of teachers, adaptive teaching factor, tutorial training and self-motivated learning. The MO-ITLBO algorithm uses a grid-based approach to adaptively assess the non-dominated solutions (i.e. Pareto front maintained in an external archive. The performance of the MO-ITLBO algorithm is assessed by implementing it on unconstrained and constrained test problems proposed for the Congress on Evolutionary Computation 2009 (CEC 2009 competition. The performance assessment is done by using the inverted generational distance (IGD measure. The IGD measures obtained by using the MO-ITLBO algorithm are compared with the IGD measures of the other state-of-the-art algorithms available in the literature. Finally, Lexicographic ordering is used to assess the overall performance of competitive algorithms. Results have shown that the proposed MO-ITLBO algorithm has obtained the 1st rank in the optimization of unconstrained test functions and the 3rd rank in the optimization of constrained test functions.

  13. Towards Finding the Global Minimum of the D-Wave Objective Function for Improved Neural Network Regressions (United States)

    Dorband, J. E.


    The D-Wave 2X has successfully been used for regression analysis to derive carbon flux data from OCO-2 CO2 concentration using neural networks. The samples returned from the D-Wave should represent the minimum of an objective function presented to it. An accurate as possible minimum function value is needed for this analysis. Samples from the D-Wave are near minimum, but seldom are the global minimum of the function due to quantum noise. Two methods for improving the accuracy of minimized values represented by the samples returned from the D-Wave are presented. The first method finds a new sample with a minimum value near each returned D-Wave sample. The second method uses all the returned samples to find a more global minimum sample. We present three use-cases performed using the former method. In the first use case, it is demonstrated that an objective function with random qubits and coupler coefficients had an improved minimum. In the second use case, the samples corrected by the first method can improve the training of a Boltzmann machine neural network. The third use case demonstrated that using the first method can improve virtual qubit accuracy.The later method was also performed on the first use case.

  14. An efficiency improved single-phase PFC converter for electric vehicle charger applications

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zhu, Dexuan; Tang, Yi; Jin, Chi


    This paper presents an efficiency improved single-phase power factor correction (PFC) converter with its target application to plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) charging systems. The proposed PFC converter features sinusoidal input current, three-level output characteristic, and wide range...... of output DC voltage. Moreover, the involved DC/DC buck conversion stage may only need to convert partial input power rather than full scale of input power, and therefore the system overall efficiency can be much improved. Through proper control of the buck converter, it is also possible to mitigate...... the double-line frequency ripple power that is inherent in a single-phase AC/DC system. Both simulation and experimental results are presented to show the effectiveness of this converter....

  15. An Oxygen Scavenging System for Improvement of Dye Stability in Single-Molecule Fluorescence Experiments☆ (United States)

    Aitken, Colin Echeverría; Marshall, R. Andrew; Puglisi, Joseph D.


    The application of single-molecule fluorescence techniques to complex biological systems places demands on the performance of single fluorophores. We present an enzymatic oxygen scavenging system for improved dye stability in single-molecule experiments. We compared the previously described protocatechuic acid/protocatechuate-3,4-dioxygenase system to the currently employed glucose oxidase/catalase system. Under standardized conditions, we observed lower dissolved oxygen concentrations with the protocatechuic acid/protocatechuate-3,4-dioxygenase system. Furthermore, we observed increased initial lifetimes of single Cy3, Cy5, and Alexa488 fluorophores. We further tested the effects of chemical additives in this system. We found that biological reducing agents increase both the frequency and duration of blinking events of Cy5, an effect that scales with reducing potential. We observed increased stability of Cy3 and Alexa488 in the presence of the antioxidants ascorbic acid and n-propyl gallate. This new O2-scavenging system should have wide application for single-molecule fluorescence experiments. PMID:17921203

  16. [Transumbilical single-port laparoscopy combined with improved double hernia needles for pediatric hydrocele]. (United States)

    Qi, Jin-Chun; Xue, Wen-Yong; Li, Suo-Lin; Lu, Bao-Sai; Jia, Jiang-Hua; Zhang, Yan-Ping; DU, Lei; Li, Meng; Li, Wei


    To compare the clinical effect of transumbilical single-port laparoscopy combined with improved double hernia needles with that of traditional open surgery in the treatment of hydrocele in children. We retrospectively analyzed 35 cases (54 sides) of pediatric hydrocele treated by transumbilical single-port laparoscopy combined with improved double hernia needles (laparoscopy group). We recorded the operation time, intraoperative blood loss, hospital stay, scrotal edema, and postoperative complications and compared them with those of another 46 cases (58 sides) treated by traditional open surgery (open surgery group) during the same period. The laparoscopy group showed a significantly shorter operation time, less intraoperative blood loss, milder scrotal edema, and fewer hospital days than the open surgery group (all P0.05). Subcutaneous emphysema developed in 2 patients in the laparoscopy group, which disappeared after 1-3 days of oxygen inhalation and other symptomatic treatment, while scrotal hematoma occurred in 1 and incision fat liquefaction in 2 patients in the open surgery group 3 days postoperatively, which healed after debridement suture and daily dressing, respectively. The patients were followed up for 3-6 months, which revealed no late complications in the laparoscopy group but 1 case of unilateral recurrence and 2 cases of offside recurrence in the open surgery group, all cured by laparoscopic internal ring ligation. Transumbilical single-port laparoscopy combined with improved double hernia needles is superior to traditional open surgery for the treatment of pediatric hydrocele and therefore deserves clinical generalization.

  17. Does job satisfaction improve the health of workers? New evidence using panel data and objective measures of health. (United States)

    Fischer, Justina A V; Sousa-Poza, Alfonso


    This paper evaluates the relationship between job satisfaction and measures of health of workers using the German Socio-Economic Panel. Methodologically, it addresses two important design problems encountered frequently in the literature: (a) cross-sectional causality problems and (b) the absence of objective measures of physical health that complement self-reported measures of health status. Not only does using the panel structure with individual fixed effects mitigate the bias from omitting unobservable personal psycho-social characteristics, but employing more objective health measures such as health-system contacts and disability addresses such measurement problems relating to self-report assessments of health status.We find a positive link between job satisfaction (and changes over time therein) and subjective health measures (and changes therein); that is, employees with higher or improved job satisfaction levels feel healthier and are more satisfied with their health. This observation also holds true for more objective measures of health. Particularly, improvements in job satisfaction over time appear to prevent workers from (further) health deterioration. Copyright (c) 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  18. Indoor climate perceived as improved after energy retrofitting of single-family houses

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Knudsen, Henrik Nellemose; Jensen, Ole Michael


    . It was found that energy consumption and indoor climate are ever more in focus when buying a house and important drivers for house owners’ motivation for retrofitting their existing house. Energy retrofitting is complicated and it is also experienced as such by many house owners. There is uncertainty......The need for energy retrofitting of the Danish single-family houses is massive, especially for the high proportion of single-family houses built in the 1960s and 1970s. But even though the potential benefits are many, only few families embark on a major energy retrofit. There may be many reasons...... for this. An obvious one may be limited knowledge of non-energy benefits, e.g. in relation to the indoor climate. The objective of this study was to explain this limited effort to save energy by identifying barriers and incentives among house owners in relation to energy retrofitting of one’s own house...

  19. An Improved Multi-Objective Programming with Augmented ε-Constraint Method for Hazardous Waste Location-Routing Problems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hao Yu


    Full Text Available Hazardous waste location-routing problems are of importance due to the potential risk for nearby residents and the environment. In this paper, an improved mathematical formulation is developed based upon a multi-objective mixed integer programming approach. The model aims at assisting decision makers in selecting locations for different facilities including treatment plants, recycling plants and disposal sites, providing appropriate technologies for hazardous waste treatment, and routing transportation. In the model, two critical factors are taken into account: system operating costs and risk imposed on local residents, and a compensation factor is introduced to the risk objective function in order to account for the fact that the risk level imposed by one type of hazardous waste or treatment technology may significantly vary from that of other types. Besides, the policy instruments for promoting waste recycling are considered, and their influence on the costs and risk of hazardous waste management is also discussed. The model is coded and calculated in Lingo optimization solver, and the augmented ε-constraint method is employed to generate the Pareto optimal curve of the multi-objective optimization problem. The trade-off between different objectives is illustrated in the numerical experiment.

  20. An Improved Multi-Objective Programming with Augmented ε-Constraint Method for Hazardous Waste Location-Routing Problems (United States)

    Yu, Hao; Solvang, Wei Deng


    Hazardous waste location-routing problems are of importance due to the potential risk for nearby residents and the environment. In this paper, an improved mathematical formulation is developed based upon a multi-objective mixed integer programming approach. The model aims at assisting decision makers in selecting locations for different facilities including treatment plants, recycling plants and disposal sites, providing appropriate technologies for hazardous waste treatment, and routing transportation. In the model, two critical factors are taken into account: system operating costs and risk imposed on local residents, and a compensation factor is introduced to the risk objective function in order to account for the fact that the risk level imposed by one type of hazardous waste or treatment technology may significantly vary from that of other types. Besides, the policy instruments for promoting waste recycling are considered, and their influence on the costs and risk of hazardous waste management is also discussed. The model is coded and calculated in Lingo optimization solver, and the augmented ε-constraint method is employed to generate the Pareto optimal curve of the multi-objective optimization problem. The trade-off between different objectives is illustrated in the numerical experiment. PMID:27258293

  1. A Single Bout of Moderate Aerobic Exercise Improves Motor Skill Acquisition (United States)

    Statton, Matthew A.; Encarnacion, Marysol; Celnik, Pablo; Bastian, Amy J.


    Long-term exercise is associated with improved performance on a variety of cognitive tasks including attention, executive function, and long-term memory. Remarkably, recent studies have shown that even a single bout of aerobic exercise can lead to immediate improvements in declarative learning and memory, but less is known about the effect of exercise on motor learning. Here we sought to determine the effect of a single bout of moderate intensity aerobic exercise on motor skill learning. In experiment 1, we investigated the effect of moderate aerobic exercise on motor acquisition. 24 young, healthy adults performed a motor learning task either immediately after 30 minutes of moderate intensity running, after running followed by a long rest period, or after slow walking. Motor skill was assessed via a speed-accuracy tradeoff function to determine how exercise might differentially affect two distinct components of motor learning performance: movement speed and accuracy. In experiment 2, we investigated both acquisition and retention of motor skill across multiple days of training. 20 additional participants performed either a bout of running or slow walking immediately before motor learning on three consecutive days, and only motor learning (no exercise) on a fourth day. We found that moderate intensity running led to an immediate improvement in motor acquisition for both a single session and on multiple sessions across subsequent days, but had no effect on between-day retention. This effect was driven by improved movement accuracy, as opposed to speed. However, the benefit of exercise was dependent upon motor learning occurring immediately after exercise–resting for a period of one hour after exercise diminished the effect. These results demonstrate that moderate intensity exercise can prime the nervous system for the acquisition of new motor skills, and suggest that similar exercise protocols may be effective in improving the outcomes of movement rehabilitation

  2. Moderators and mediators of exercise-induced objective sleep improvements in midlife and older adults with sleep complaints. (United States)

    Buman, Matthew P; Hekler, Eric B; Bliwise, Donald L; King, Abby C


    Exercise can improve sleep quality, but for whom and by what means remains unclear. We examined moderators and mediators of objective sleep improvements in a 12-month randomized controlled trial among underactive midlife and older adults reporting mild/moderate sleep complaints. Participants (N = 66, 67% women, 55-79 years) were randomized to moderate-intensity exercise or health education control. Putative moderators were gender, age, physical function, self-reported global sleep quality, and physical activity levels. Putative mediators were changes in BMI, depressive symptoms, and physical function at 6 months. Objective sleep outcomes measured by in-home polysomnography were percent time in Stage I sleep, percent time in Stage II sleep, and number of awakenings during the first third of sleep at 12 months. Baseline physical function and sleep quality moderated changes in Stage I sleep; individuals with higher initial physical function (p = .01) and poorer sleep quality (p = .03) had greater improvements. Baseline physical activity level moderated changes in Stage II sleep (p = .04) and number of awakenings (p = .01); more sedentary individuals had greater improvements. Decreased depressive symptoms (CI:-1.57 to -0.02) mediated change in Stage I sleep. Decreased depressive symptoms (CI:-0.75 to -0.01), decreased BMI (CI:-1.08 to -0.06), and increased physical function (CI: 0.01 to 0.72) mediated change in number of awakenings. Initially less active individuals with higher initial physical function and poorer sleep quality improved the most. Affective, functional, and metabolic mediators specific to sleep architecture parameters were suggested. These results indicate strategies to more efficiently treat poor sleep through exercise in older adults.

  3. Detecting Binary Compact-object Mergers with Gravitational Waves: Understanding and Improving the Sensitivity of the PyCBC Search (United States)

    Nitz, Alexander H.; Dent, Thomas; Dal Canton, Tito; Fairhurst, Stephen; Brown, Duncan A.


    We present an improved search for binary compact-object mergers using a network of ground-based gravitational-wave detectors. We model a volumetric, isotropic source population and incorporate the resulting distribution over signal amplitude, time delay, and coalescence phase into the ranking of candidate events. We describe an improved modeling of the background distribution, and demonstrate incorporating a prior model of the binary mass distribution in the ranking of candidate events. We find an ˜ 10 % and ˜ 20 % increase in detection volume for simulated binary neutron star and neutron star black hole systems, respectively, corresponding to a reduction of the false alarm rates assigned to signals by between one and two orders of magnitude.

  4. Image quality improvement in computational reconstruction of partially occluded objects using two computational integral imaging reconstruction methods (United States)

    Lee, Joon-Jae; Shin, Donghak; Yoo, Hoon


    In this paper, we propose an image quality improvement method of partially occluded objects using two different computational integral imaging reconstruction (CIIR) methods. In the proposed method, we first remove the occlusion in the recorded elemental images using two different plane images which are generated from two different CIIR methods. We introduce a CIIR method based on a round-mapping model for combined use of the previous method. The difference between two plane images reconstructed at a specific distance enables us to estimate the position of the occlusion in the elemental images. The occlusion-removed elemental images are used to reconstruct the improved 3D images. We carry out some experiments and present the results to show the usefulness of the proposed method.

  5. Single-particle cryo-EM-Improved ab initio 3D reconstruction with SIMPLE/PRIME. (United States)

    Reboul, Cyril F; Eager, Michael; Elmlund, Dominika; Elmlund, Hans


    Cryogenic electron microscopy (cryo-EM) and single-particle analysis now enables the determination of high-resolution structures of macromolecular assemblies that have resisted X-ray crystallography and other approaches. We developed the SIMPLE open-source image-processing suite for analysing cryo-EM images of single-particles. A core component of SIMPLE is the probabilistic PRIME algorithm for identifying clusters of images in 2D and determine relative orientations of single-particle projections in 3D. Here, we extend our previous work on PRIME and introduce new stochastic optimization algorithms that improve the robustness of the approach. Our refined method for identification of homogeneous subsets of images in accurate register substantially improves the resolution of the cluster centers and of the ab initio 3D reconstructions derived from them. We now obtain maps with a resolution better than 10 Å by exclusively processing cluster centers. Excellent parallel code performance on over-the-counter laptops and CPU workstations is demonstrated. © 2017 The Protein Society.

  6. Improvement of the R-SWAT-FME framework to support multiple variables and multi-objective functions. (United States)

    Wu, Yiping; Liu, Shuguang


    Application of numerical models is a common practice in the environmental field for investigation and prediction of natural and anthropogenic processes. However, process knowledge, parameter identifiability, sensitivity, and uncertainty analyses are still a challenge for large and complex mathematical models such as the hydrological/water quality model, Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT). In this study, the previously developed R program language-SWAT-Flexible Modeling Environment (R-SWAT-FME) was improved to support multiple model variables and objectives at multiple time steps (i.e., daily, monthly, and annually). This expansion is significant because there is usually more than one variable (e.g., water, nutrients, and pesticides) of interest for environmental models like SWAT. To further facilitate its easy use, we also simplified its application requirements without compromising its merits, such as the user-friendly interface. To evaluate the performance of the improved framework, we used a case study focusing on both streamflow and nitrate nitrogen in the Upper Iowa River Basin (above Marengo) in the United States. Results indicated that the R-SWAT-FME performs well and is comparable to the built-in auto-calibration tool in multi-objective model calibration. Overall, the enhanced R-SWAT-FME can be useful for the SWAT community, and the methods we used can also be valuable for wrapping potential R packages with other environmental models. © 2013.

  7. Direct Training to Improve Educators' Treatment Integrity: A Systematic Review of Single-Case Design Studies. (United States)

    Fallon, Lindsay M; Kurtz, Kathryn D; Mueller, Marlana R


    In consultation, school psychologists may offer educators direct training to support the implementation of classroom interventions aimed to improve student outcomes. The purpose of this study was to conduct a systematic literature review of single-case design research studies during which educators received direct training to implement a classroom intervention, specifically instructions, modeling, practice, and feedback. Two doctoral students in school psychology screened 228 articles and evaluated 33 studies to determine if direct training is effective and an evidence-based practice per single-case design standards proposed by the What Works Clearinghouse. Results of the review indicate that there is support for the practice to be deemed evidence-based and associated with better intervention implementation than before its application. Implications include direct training being considered for intensive, complex interventions to promote educator success with implementation. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).

  8. Improved and Reproducible Flow Cytometry Methodology for Nuclei Isolation from Single Root Meristem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thaís Cristina Ribeiro Silva


    Full Text Available Root meristems have increasingly been target of cell cycle studies by flow cytometric DNA content quantification. Moreover, roots can be an alternative source of nuclear suspension when leaves become unfeasible and for chromosome analysis and sorting. In the present paper, a protocol for intact nuclei isolation from a single root meristem was developed. This proceeding was based on excision of the meristematic region using a prototypical slide, followed by short enzymatic digestion and mechanical isolation of nuclei during homogenization with a hand mixer. Such parameters were optimized for reaching better results. Satisfactory nuclei amounts were extracted and analyzed by flow cytometry, producing histograms with reduced background noise and CVs between 3.2 and 4.1%. This improved and reproducible technique was shown to be rapid, inexpensive, and simple for nuclear extraction from a single root tip, and can be adapted for other plants and purposes.

  9. Event-related fast optical signal in a rapid object recognition task: improving detection by the independent component analysis. (United States)

    Medvedev, Andrei V; Kainerstorfer, Jana; Borisov, Sergey V; Barbour, Randall L; VanMeter, John


    Noninvasive recording of fast optical signals presumably reflecting neuronal activity is a challenging task because of a relatively low signal-to-noise ratio. To improve detection of those signals in rapid object recognition tasks, we used the independent component analysis (ICA) to reduce "global interference" (heartbeat and contribution of superficial layers). We recorded optical signals from the left prefrontal cortex in 10 right-handed participants with a continuous-wave instrument (DYNOT, NIRx, Brooklyn, NY). Visual stimuli were pictures of urban, landscape and seashore scenes with various vehicles as targets (target-to-non-target ratio 1:6) presented at ISI=166 ms or 250 ms. Subjects mentally counted targets. Data were filtered at 2-30 Hz and artifactual components were identified visually (for heartbeat) and using the ICA weight matrix (for superficial layers). Optical signals were restored from the ICA components with artifactual components removed and then averaged over target and non-target epochs. After ICA processing, the event-related response was detected in 70%-100% of subjects. The refined signal showed a significant decrease from baseline within 200-300 ms after targets and a slight increase after non-targets. The temporal profile of the optical signal corresponded well to the profile of a "differential ERP response", the difference between targets and non-targets which peaks at 200 ms in similar object detection tasks. These results demonstrate that the detection of fast optical responses with continuous-wave instruments can be improved through the ICA method capable to remove noise, global interference and the activity of superficial layers. Fast optical signals may provide further information on brain processing during higher-order cognitive tasks such as rapid categorization of objects.

  10. Fusion Peptide Improves Stability and Bioactivity of Single Chain Antibody against Rabies Virus. (United States)

    Xi, Hualong; Zhang, Kaixin; Yin, Yanchun; Gu, Tiejun; Sun, Qing; Shi, Linqing; Zhang, Renxia; Jiang, Chunlai; Kong, Wei; Wu, Yongge


    The combination of rabies immunoglobulin (RIG) with a vaccine is currently effective against rabies infections, but improvements are needed. Genetic engineering antibody technology is an attractive approach for developing novel antibodies to replace RIG. In our previous study, a single-chain variable fragment, scFv57R, against rabies virus glycoprotein was constructed. However, its inherent weak stability and short half-life compared with the parent RIG may limit its diagnostic and therapeutic application. Therefore, an acidic tail of synuclein (ATS) derived from the C-terminal acidic tail of human alpha-synuclein protein was fused to the C-terminus of scFv57R in order to help it resist adverse stress and improve the stability and halflife. The tail showed no apparent effect on the preparation procedure and affinity of the protein, nor did it change the neutralizing potency in vitro. In the ELISA test of molecular stability, the ATS fusion form of the protein, scFv57R-ATS, showed an increase in thermal stability and longer half-life in serum than scFv57R. The protection against fatal rabies virus challenge improved after fusing the tail to the scFv, which may be attributed to the improved stability. Thus, the ATS fusion approach presented here is easily implemented and can be used as a new strategy to improve the stability and half-life of engineered antibody proteins for practical applications.

  11. An improved cut-and-solve algorithm for the single-source capacitated facility location problem

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gadegaard, Sune Lauth; Klose, Andreas; Nielsen, Lars Relund


    In this paper, we present an improved cut-and-solve algorithm for the single-source capacitated facility location problem. The algorithm consists of three phases. The first phase strengthens the integer program by a cutting plane algorithm to obtain a tight lower bound. The second phase uses a two......-level local branching heuristic to find an upper bound, and if optimality has not yet been established, the third phase uses the cut-and-solve framework to close the optimality gap. Extensive computational results are reported, showing that the proposed algorithm runs 10–80 times faster on average compared...

  12. An improved method for the molecular identification of single dinoflagellate cysts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yangchun Gao


    Full Text Available Background Dinoflagellate cysts (i.e., dinocysts are biologically and ecologically important as they can help dinoflagellate species survive harsh environments, facilitate their dispersal and serve as seeds for harmful algal blooms. In addition, dinocysts derived from some species can produce more toxins than vegetative forms, largely affecting species through their food webs and even human health. Consequently, accurate identification of dinocysts represents the first crucial step in many ecological studies. As dinocysts have limited or even no available taxonomic keys, molecular methods have become the first priority for dinocyst identification. However, molecular identification of dinocysts, particularly when using single cells, poses technical challenges. The most serious is the low success rate of PCR, especially for heterotrophic species. Methods In this study, we aim to improve the success rate of single dinocyst identification for the chosen dinocyst species (Gonyaulax spinifera, Polykrikos kofoidii, Lingulodinium polyedrum, Pyrophacus steinii, Protoperidinium leonis and Protoperidinium oblongum distributed in the South China Sea. We worked on two major technical issues: cleaning possible PCR inhibitors attached on the cyst surface and designing new dinoflagellate-specific PCR primers to improve the success of PCR amplification. Results For the cleaning of single dinocysts separated from marine sediments, we used ultrasonic wave-based cleaning and optimized cleaning parameters. Our results showed that the optimized ultrasonic wave-based cleaning method largely improved the identification success rate and accuracy of both molecular and morphological identifications. For the molecular identification with the newly designed dinoflagellate-specific primers (18S634F-18S634R, the success ratio was as high as 86.7% for single dinocysts across multiple taxa when using the optimized ultrasonic wave-based cleaning method, and much higher than that

  13. The Single-Molecule Centroid Localization Algorithm Improves the Accuracy of Fluorescence Binding Assays. (United States)

    Hua, Boyang; Wang, Yanbo; Park, Seongjin; Han, Kyu Young; Singh, Digvijay; Kim, Jin H; Cheng, Wei; Ha, Taekjip


    Here, we demonstrate that the use of the single-molecule centroid localization algorithm can improve the accuracy of fluorescence binding assays. Two major artifacts in this type of assay, i.e., nonspecific binding events and optically overlapping receptors, can be detected and corrected during analysis. The effectiveness of our method was confirmed by measuring two weak biomolecular interactions, the interaction between the B1 domain of streptococcal protein G and immunoglobulin G and the interaction between double-stranded DNA and the Cas9-RNA complex with limited sequence matches. This analysis routine requires little modification to common experimental protocols, making it readily applicable to existing data and future experiments.

  14. A single night of sleep loss impairs objective but not subjective working memory performance in a sex-dependent manner. (United States)

    Rångtell, Frida H; Karamchedu, Swathy; Andersson, Peter; Liethof, Lisanne; Olaya Búcaro, Marcela; Lampola, Lauri; Schiöth, Helgi B; Cedernaes, Jonathan; Benedict, Christian


    Acute sleep deprivation can lead to judgement errors and thereby increases the risk of accidents, possibly due to an impaired working memory. However, whether the adverse effects of acute sleep loss on working memory are modulated by auditory distraction in women and men are not known. Additionally, it is unknown whether sleep loss alters the way in which men and women perceive their working memory performance. Thus, 24 young adults (12 women using oral contraceptives at the time of investigation) participated in two experimental conditions: nocturnal sleep (scheduled between 22:30 and 06:30 hours) versus one night of total sleep loss. Participants were administered a digital working memory test in which eight-digit sequences were learned and retrieved in the morning after each condition. Learning of digital sequences was accompanied by either silence or auditory distraction (equal distribution among trials). After sequence retrieval, each trial ended with a question regarding how certain participants were of the correctness of their response, as a self-estimate of working memory performance. We found that sleep loss impaired objective but not self-estimated working memory performance in women. In contrast, both measures remained unaffected by sleep loss in men. Auditory distraction impaired working memory performance, without modulation by sleep loss or sex. Being unaware of cognitive limitations when sleep-deprived, as seen in our study, could lead to undesirable consequences in, for example, an occupational context. Our findings suggest that sleep-deprived young women are at particular risk for overestimating their working memory performance. © 2018 The Authors. Journal of Sleep Research published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of European Sleep Research Society.

  15. Combining satellite data and appropriate objective functions for improved spatial pattern performance of a distributed hydrologic model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. C. Demirel


    Full Text Available Satellite-based earth observations offer great opportunities to improve spatial model predictions by means of spatial-pattern-oriented model evaluations. In this study, observed spatial patterns of actual evapotranspiration (AET are utilised for spatial model calibration tailored to target the pattern performance of the model. The proposed calibration framework combines temporally aggregated observed spatial patterns with a new spatial performance metric and a flexible spatial parameterisation scheme. The mesoscale hydrologic model (mHM is used to simulate streamflow and AET and has been selected due to its soil parameter distribution approach based on pedo-transfer functions and the build in multi-scale parameter regionalisation. In addition two new spatial parameter distribution options have been incorporated in the model in order to increase the flexibility of root fraction coefficient and potential evapotranspiration correction parameterisations, based on soil type and vegetation density. These parameterisations are utilised as they are most relevant for simulated AET patterns from the hydrologic model. Due to the fundamental challenges encountered when evaluating spatial pattern performance using standard metrics, we developed a simple but highly discriminative spatial metric, i.e. one comprised of three easily interpretable components measuring co-location, variation and distribution of the spatial data. The study shows that with flexible spatial model parameterisation used in combination with the appropriate objective functions, the simulated spatial patterns of actual evapotranspiration become substantially more similar to the satellite-based estimates. Overall 26 parameters are identified for calibration through a sequential screening approach based on a combination of streamflow and spatial pattern metrics. The robustness of the calibrations is tested using an ensemble of nine calibrations based on different seed numbers using the

  16. Combining satellite data and appropriate objective functions for improved spatial pattern performance of a distributed hydrologic model (United States)

    Demirel, Mehmet C.; Mai, Juliane; Mendiguren, Gorka; Koch, Julian; Samaniego, Luis; Stisen, Simon


    Satellite-based earth observations offer great opportunities to improve spatial model predictions by means of spatial-pattern-oriented model evaluations. In this study, observed spatial patterns of actual evapotranspiration (AET) are utilised for spatial model calibration tailored to target the pattern performance of the model. The proposed calibration framework combines temporally aggregated observed spatial patterns with a new spatial performance metric and a flexible spatial parameterisation scheme. The mesoscale hydrologic model (mHM) is used to simulate streamflow and AET and has been selected due to its soil parameter distribution approach based on pedo-transfer functions and the build in multi-scale parameter regionalisation. In addition two new spatial parameter distribution options have been incorporated in the model in order to increase the flexibility of root fraction coefficient and potential evapotranspiration correction parameterisations, based on soil type and vegetation density. These parameterisations are utilised as they are most relevant for simulated AET patterns from the hydrologic model. Due to the fundamental challenges encountered when evaluating spatial pattern performance using standard metrics, we developed a simple but highly discriminative spatial metric, i.e. one comprised of three easily interpretable components measuring co-location, variation and distribution of the spatial data. The study shows that with flexible spatial model parameterisation used in combination with the appropriate objective functions, the simulated spatial patterns of actual evapotranspiration become substantially more similar to the satellite-based estimates. Overall 26 parameters are identified for calibration through a sequential screening approach based on a combination of streamflow and spatial pattern metrics. The robustness of the calibrations is tested using an ensemble of nine calibrations based on different seed numbers using the shuffled complex

  17. Single excitation-emission fluorescence spectrum (EEF) for determination of cetane improver in diesel fuel. (United States)

    Insausti, Matías; Fernández Band, Beatriz S


    A highly sensitive spectrofluorimetric method has been developed for the determination of 2-ethylhexyl nitrate in diesel fuel. Usually, this compound is used as an additive in order to improve cetane number. The analytical method consists in building the chemometric model as a first step. Then, it is possible to quantify the analyte with only recording a single excitation-emission fluorescence spectrum (EEF), whose data are introduced in the chemometric model above mentioned. Another important characteristic of this method is that the fuel sample was used without any pre-treatment for EEF. This work provides an interest improvement to fluorescence techniques using the rapid and easily applicable EEF approach to analyze such complex matrices. Exploding EEF was the key to a successful determination, obtaining a detection limit of 0.00434% (v/v) and a limit of quantification of 0.01446% (v/v). Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Single Mode ZnO Whispering-Gallery Submicron Cavity and Graphene Improved Lasing Performance. (United States)

    Li, Jitao; Lin, Yi; Lu, Junfeng; Xu, Chunxiang; Wang, Yueyue; Shi, Zengliang; Dai, Jun


    Single-mode ultraviolet (UV) laser of ZnO is still in challenge so far, although it has been paid great attention along the past decades. In this work, single-mode lasing resonance was realized in a submicron-sized ZnO rod based on serially varying the dimension of the whispering-gallery mode (WGM) cavities. The lasing performance, such as the lasing quality factor (Q) and the lasing intensity, was remarkably improved by facilely covering monolayer graphene on the ZnO submicron-rod. The mode structure evolution from multimodes to single-mode was investigated systematically based on the total internal-wall reflection of the ZnO microcavities. Graphene-induced optical field confinement and lasing emission enhancement were revealed, indicating an energy coupling between graphene SP and ZnO exciton emission. This result demonstrated the response of graphene in the UV wavelength region and extended its potential applications besides many previous reports on the multifunctional graphene/semiconductor hybrid materials and devices in advanced electronics and optoelectronics areas.

  19. Procedures of hepatic scintigraphy and improvement of professionals by using anthropomorphic simulator object of liver in nuclear medicine

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ferreira, Fernanda C.L.; Cunha, Cledison J.; Dullius, Marcos A.; Souza, Divanizia N.


    This paper evaluates hepatic scintigraphy procedures and the possibility of professional improvement in nuclear medicine by using three-dimension anthropomorphic simulators representative of adult human liver. For the conformation of anthropomorphic simulator, it was used gypsum and acrylic. Three simulator objects representing cirrhosis livers. The simulator were filled with 99m Tc diluted in water for the obtention of scintigraphic images. Tomographic images were analysed posterior and anterior of simulator representing an organ with more cirrhosis grade. It was observed that the simulators make possible the acquisition of images similar to the real images of liver with hepatic cirrhosis. The simulations of hemangiomas can contribute for continuous education of nuclear medicine professionals, as far the question of image formation is concerned, make possible the parameter study as, for example, the , matrix size energy window, zoom and counting statistic

  20. An Interactive Procedure to Solve Multi-Objective Decision-Making Problem: An Improvment to STEM Method

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Roostaee


    Full Text Available Decisions in the real-world contexts are often made in the presence of multiple, conflicting, and incommensurate criteria. Multiobjective programming methods such as multiple objective linear programming (MOLP are techniques used to solve such multiple-criteria decision-making (MCDM problems. One of the first interactive procedures to solve MOLP is STEM method. In this paper we try to improve STEM method in a way that we search a point in reduced feasible region whose criterion vector is closest to positive ideal criterion vector and furthest to negative ideal criterion vector. Therefore the presented method tries to increase the rate of satisfactoriness of the obtained solution. Finally, a numerical example for illustration of the new method is given to clarify the main results developed in this paper.

  1. Fitting membrane resistance along with action potential shape in cardiac myocytes improves convergence: application of a multi-objective parallel genetic algorithm.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jaspreet Kaur

    Full Text Available Fitting parameter sets of non-linear equations in cardiac single cell ionic models to reproduce experimental behavior is a time consuming process. The standard procedure is to adjust maximum channel conductances in ionic models to reproduce action potentials (APs recorded in isolated cells. However, vastly different sets of parameters can produce similar APs. Furthermore, even with an excellent AP match in case of single cell, tissue behaviour may be very different. We hypothesize that this uncertainty can be reduced by additionally fitting membrane resistance (Rm. To investigate the importance of Rm, we developed a genetic algorithm approach which incorporated Rm data calculated at a few points in the cycle, in addition to AP morphology. Performance was compared to a genetic algorithm using only AP morphology data. The optimal parameter sets and goodness of fit as computed by the different methods were compared. First, we fit an ionic model to itself, starting from a random parameter set. Next, we fit the AP of one ionic model to that of another. Finally, we fit an ionic model to experimentally recorded rabbit action potentials. Adding the extra objective (Rm, at a few voltages to the AP fit, lead to much better convergence. Typically, a smaller MSE (mean square error, defined as the average of the squared error between the target AP and AP that is to be fitted was achieved in one fifth of the number of generations compared to using only AP data. Importantly, the variability in fit parameters was also greatly reduced, with many parameters showing an order of magnitude decrease in variability. Adding Rm to the objective function improves the robustness of fitting, better preserving tissue level behavior, and should be incorporated.

  2. [Single event multilevel surgery to improve gait in diplegic cerebral palsy - a prospective controlled trial]. (United States)

    Zwick, E B; Saraph, V; Strobl, W; Steinwender, G


    To evaluate prospectively the outcome of gait-improvement surgery in children with spastic diplegia. Three-dimensional gait analysis was performed in twenty children with spastic diplegia. Ten children underwent single event multilevel surgery for gait improvement. Indications for individual procedures followed a fixed set of selection criteria. The other ten children continued with their physiotherapy programme and served as a control group. A second gait analysis was performed in all children after 1.5 years. Time-distance parameters and kinematics of the pelvis, hip, knee and ankle joints in the sagittal plane served as main outcome measures The patients walked faster with an increased stride length after surgery in comparison to the conservatively treated controls. The average pelvic tilt increased slightly and the range of motion of the knee joint increased considerably after multilevel surgery. The motion at the ankle remained unchanged over the study period in both the groups. An improved knee extension during the stance phase of gait served to improve stance limb stability and facilitated an unhindered swing phase of the opposite limb. This prospective trial showed favourable changes in gait function after multilevel surgery in spastic diplegic children.

  3. Improvement on image quality of single photon ECT with converging collimator system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Murayama, Hideo; Nohara, Norimasa; Tanaka, Eiichi


    Single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) with converging collimator system was proposed to improve quality of reconstructed images. The collimator system was designed to enhance sensitivity at the center region of field-of-view, where the probability photons escape the attenuating medium is smaller than at the off-center region. In order to evaluate efficiency of the improvement on image quality, the weighting function of projection, which is defined as relative sensitivity to the average on the lateral sampling of projection, was adopted to the image reconstruction algorithm of Radial Post Correction method. Statistical mean square noise in a reconstructed image was formulated in this method. Simulation studies using typical weighting function showed that center-enhanced weighting function brings effective improvement on image quality, especially, at the center region of cold area surrounded by annularly distributed activity. A new SPECT system was proposed as one example of the converging collimator systems. The system is composed of four gamma cameras with four fan-beam collimators, which have different focal distances one another. Simple simulation studies showed that the proposed system has reasonable center-enhanced weighting function, and the image quality based on the proposed system was fairly improved as compared with one based on uniform weighting function at the center region of the field-of-view. (author)

  4. A single dose of oxytocin nasal spray improves higher-order social cognition in schizophrenia. (United States)

    Guastella, Adam J; Ward, Philip B; Hickie, Ian B; Shahrestani, Sara; Hodge, Marie Antoinette Redoblado; Scott, Elizabeth M; Langdon, Robyn


    Schizophrenia is associated with significant impairments in both higher and lower order social cognitive performance and these impairments contribute to poor social functioning. People with schizophrenia report poor social functioning to be one of their greatest unmet treatment needs. Recent studies have suggested the potential of oxytocin as such a treatment, but mixed results render it uncertain what aspects of social cognition are improved by oxytocin and, subsequently, how oxytocin might best be applied as a therapeutic. The aim of this study was to determine whether a single dose of oxytocin improved higher-order and lower-order social cognition performance for patients with schizophrenia across a well-established battery of social cognition tests. Twenty-one male patients received both a single dose of oxytocin nasal spray (24IU) and a placebo, two weeks apart in a randomized within-subjects placebo controlled design. Following each administration, participants completed the social cognition tasks, as well as a test of general neurocognition. Results revealed that oxytocin particularly enhanced performance on higher order social cognition tasks, with no effects on general neurocognition. Results for individual tasks showed most improvement on tests measuring appreciation of indirect hints and recognition of social faux pas. These results suggest that oxytocin, if combined to enhance social cognition learning, may be beneficial when targeted at higher order social cognition domains. This study also suggests that these higher order tasks, which assess social cognitive processing in a social communication context, may provide useful markers of response to oxytocin in schizophrenia. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Improvement of the internal light environment on the objects of transport infrastructure with aid of sun-protective devices (United States)

    Stetsky, Sergey


    The article analyzes the problems of outdoor stationary sun-protective devices (S.P.D.) and their influence on the natural daylighting levels in the premises of civil objects of transport infrastructure under the hot and sunny climatic conditions of the environment. It is noted, that with clear sky, typical for the said climate, non-uniform luminance of the sky differs seriously from the luminance of standard overcast sky with diffused light, recommended by C.I.E. (Commission International D’Eclairage).A conclusion is made, that with clear sky conditions, a sun-protective devices in the form of stationary canopies (awninas) help to improve the lighting environment in the premises considered. This becomes possible due to reflected sun flow from the surfaces of SPD employed, as well as due to rise of a daylight factor values in farmost from windows zones of interiors, because of the increase of luminance factor values of the sky areas, observed from these zones. Thus, the SPD considered, in the hot and sunny climatic conditions are able not only to carry out their main function of passive method of solar radiation and thermal control in the interiors, but also to act as an efficient measure to improve lightning environment of the premises in question.

  6. Improving the Representation of Snow Crystal Properties with a Single-Moment Mircophysics Scheme (United States)

    Molthan, Andrew L.; Petersen, Walter A.; Case, Jonathan L.; Demek, Scott R.


    Single-moment microphysics schemes are utilized in an increasing number of applications and are widely available within numerical modeling packages, often executed in near real-time to aid in the issuance of weather forecasts and advisories. In order to simulate cloud microphysical and precipitation processes, a number of assumptions are made within these schemes. Snow crystals are often assumed to be spherical and of uniform density, and their size distribution intercept may be fixed to simplify calculation of the remaining parameters. Recently, the Canadian CloudSat/CALIPSO Validation Project (C3VP) provided aircraft observations of snow crystal size distributions and environmental state variables, sampling widespread snowfall associated with a passing extratropical cyclone on 22 January 2007. Aircraft instrumentation was supplemented by comparable surface estimations and sampling by two radars: the C-band, dual-polarimetric radar in King City, Ontario and the NASA CloudSat 94 GHz Cloud Profiling Radar. As radar systems respond to both hydrometeor mass and size distribution, they provide value when assessing the accuracy of cloud characteristics as simulated by a forecast model. However, simulation of the 94 GHz radar signal requires special attention, as radar backscatter is sensitive to the assumed crystal shape. Observations obtained during the 22 January 2007 event are used to validate assumptions of density and size distribution within the NASA Goddard six-class single-moment microphysics scheme. Two high resolution forecasts are performed on a 9-3-1 km grid, with C3VP-based alternative parameterizations incorporated and examined for improvement. In order to apply the CloudSat 94 GHz radar to model validation, the single scattering characteristics of various crystal types are used and demonstrate that the assumption of Mie spheres is insufficient for representing CloudSat reflectivity derived from winter precipitation. Furthermore, snow density and size

  7. Improved Outcomes Following a Single Session Web-Based Intervention for Problem Gambling. (United States)

    Rodda, S N; Lubman, D I; Jackson, A C; Dowling, N A


    Research suggests online interventions can have instant impact, however this is yet to be tested with help-seeking adults and in particular those with problem gambling. This study seeks to determine the immediate impact of a single session web-based intervention for problem gambling, and to examine whether sessions evaluated positively by clients are associated with greater improvement. The current study involved 229 participants classified as problem gamblers who agreed to participate after accessing Gambling Help Online between November 2010 and February 2012. Almost half were aged under 35 years of age (45 %), male (57 %) as well as first time treatment seekers (62 %). Participants completed measures of readiness to change and distress both prior to and post-counselling. Following the provision of a single-session of counselling, participants completed ratings of the character of the session (i.e., degree of depth and smoothness) post-counselling. A significant increase in confidence to resist and urge to gamble and a significant decrease in distress (moderate effect size; d = .56 and .63 respectively) was observed after receiving online counselling. A hierarchical regression indicated the character of the session was a significant predictor of change in confidence, however only the sub-scale smoothness was a significant predictor of change in distress. This was the case even after controlling for pre-session distress, session word count and client characteristics (gender, age, preferred gambling activity, preferred mode of gambling, gambling severity, and preferred mode of help-seeking). These findings suggest that single session web-based counselling for problem gambling can have immediate benefits, although further research is required to examine the impact on longer-term outcomes.

  8. Modelling and Simulation of Single-Phase Series Active Compensator for Power Quality Improvement (United States)

    Verma, Arun Kumar; Mathuria, Kirti; Singh, Bhim; Bhuvaneshwari, G.


    A single-phase active series compensator is proposed in this work to reduce harmonic currents at the ac mains and to regulate the dc link voltage of a diode bridge rectifier (DBR) that acts as the front end converter for a voltage source inverter feeding an ac motor. This ac motor drive is used in any of the domestic, commercial or industrial appliances. Under fluctuating ac mains voltages, the dc link voltage of the DBR depicts wide variations and hence the ac motor is used at reduced rating as compared to its name-plate rating. The active series compensator proposed here provides dual functions of improving the power quality at the ac mains and regulating the dc link voltage thus averting the need for derating of the ac motor.

  9. Performance improvement for GPS single frequency kinematic relative positioning under poor satellite visibility. (United States)

    Chen, Wantong


    Reliable ambiguity resolution in difficult environments such as during setting/rising events of satellites or during limited satellite visibility is a significant challenge for GPS single frequency kinematic relative positioning. Here, a recursive estimation method combining both code and carrier phase measurements was developed that can tolerate recurrent satellite setting/rising and accelerate initialization in motion. We propose an ambiguity dimension expansion method by utilizing the partial ambiguity relevance of previous and current observations. In essence, this method attempts to integrate all useful information into the recursive estimation equation and performs a better least squares adjustment. Using this method, the success rate of the extended ambiguity estimation is independent of the satellite setting and shows robust performance despite poor satellite visibility. Our model allows integration of other useful information into the recursive process. Actual experiments in urban environments demonstrate that the proposed algorithm can improve the reliability and availability of relative positioning.

  10. Fulfilling the law of a single independent variable and improving the result of mathematical educational research (United States)

    Pardimin, H.; Arcana, N.


    Many types of research in the field of mathematics education apply the Quasi-Experimental method and statistical analysis use t-test. Quasi-experiment has a weakness that is difficult to fulfil “the law of a single independent variable”. T-test also has a weakness that is a generalization of the conclusions obtained is less powerful. This research aimed to find ways to reduce the weaknesses of the Quasi-experimental method and improved the generalization of the research results. The method applied in the research was a non-interactive qualitative method, and the type was concept analysis. Concepts analysed are the concept of statistics, research methods of education, and research reports. The result represented a way to overcome the weaknesses of quasi-Experiments and T-test. In addition, the way was to apply a combination of Factorial Design and Balanced Design, which the authors refer to as Factorial-Balanced Design. The advantages of this design are: (1) almost fulfilling “the low of single independent variable” so no need to test the similarity of the academic ability, (2) the sample size of the experimental group and the control group became larger and equal; so it becomes robust to deal with violations of the assumptions of the ANOVA test.

  11. Improving appropriate use of echocardiography and single-photon emission computed tomographic myocardial perfusion imaging: a continuous quality improvement initiative. (United States)

    Johnson, Thomas V; Rose, Geoffrey A; Fenner, Deborah J; Rozario, Nigel L


    Appropriate use criteria for cardiovascular imaging have been published, but compliance in practice has been incomplete, with persistent high rates of inappropriate use. The aim of this study was to show the efficacy of a continuous quality improvement (CQI) initiative to favorably influence the appropriate use of outpatient transthoracic echocardiography and single-photon emission computed tomographic (SPECT) myocardial perfusion imaging (MPI) in a large cardiovascular practice. In this prospective study, a multiphase CQI initiative was implemented, and its impact on ordering patterns for outpatient transthoracic echocardiography and SPECT MPI was assessed. Between November and December 2010, a baseline analysis of the application of appropriate use criteria to indications for outpatient transthoracic echocardiographic studies (n = 203) and SPECT MPI studies (n = 205) was performed, with studies categorized as "appropriate," "inappropriate," "uncertain," or "unclassified." The CQI initiative was then begun, with (1) clinician education, including didactic lectures and case-based presentations with audience participation; (2) system changes in ordering processes, with redesigned image ordering forms; and (3) peer review and feedback. A follow-up analysis was then performed between June and August 2012, with categorization of indications for transthoracic echocardiographic studies (n = 206) and SPECT MPI studies (n = 206). At baseline, 73.9% of echocardiographic studies were categorized as appropriate, 16.7% as inappropriate, 5.9% as uncertain, and 3.4% as unclassified. Similarly, for SPECT MPI studies 71.7% were categorized as appropriate, 18.5% as inappropriate, 7.8% as uncertain, and 1.9% as unclassified. Separate analysis of the two most important categories, appropriate and inappropriate, demonstrated a significant improvement after the CQI initiative, with a 63% reduction in inappropriate echocardiographic studies (18.5% vs 6.9%, P = .0010) and a 46% reduction

  12. Improving the Penetration of Wind Power with Dynamic Thermal Rating System, Static VAR Compensator and Multi-Objective Genetic Algorithm

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiashen Teh


    Full Text Available The integration of renewable energy sources, especially wind energy, has been on the rise throughout power systems worldwide. Due to this relatively new introduction, the integration of wind energy is often not optimized. Moreover, owing to the technical constraints and transmission congestions of the power network, most of the wind energy has to be curtailed. Due to various factors that influence the connectivity of wind energy, this paper proposes a well-organized posterior multi-objective (MO optimization algorithm for maximizing the connections of wind energy. In this regard, the dynamic thermal rating (DTR system and the static VAR compensator (SVC have been identified as effective tools for improving the loadability of the network. The propose MO algorithm in this paper aims to minimize: (1 wind energy curtailment, (2 operation cost of the network considering all investments and operations, also known as the total social cost, and (3 SVC operation cost. The proposed MO problem was solved using the non-dominated sorting genetic algorithm (NSGA II and it was tested on the modified IEEE reliability test system (IEEE-RTS. The results demonstrate the applicability of the proposed algorithm in aiding power system enhancement planning for integrating wind energy.

  13. Single image super-resolution based on compressive sensing and improved TV minimization sparse recovery (United States)

    Vishnukumar, S.; Wilscy, M.


    In this paper, we propose a single image Super-Resolution (SR) method based on Compressive Sensing (CS) and Improved Total Variation (TV) Minimization Sparse Recovery. In the CS framework, low-resolution (LR) image is treated as the compressed version of high-resolution (HR) image. Dictionary Training and Sparse Recovery are the two phases of the method. K-Singular Value Decomposition (K-SVD) method is used for dictionary training and the dictionary represents HR image patches in a sparse manner. Here, only the interpolated version of the LR image is used for training purpose and thereby the structural self similarity inherent in the LR image is exploited. In the sparse recovery phase the sparse representation coefficients with respect to the trained dictionary for LR image patches are derived using Improved TV Minimization method. HR image can be reconstructed by the linear combination of the dictionary and the sparse coefficients. The experimental results show that the proposed method gives better results quantitatively as well as qualitatively on both natural and remote sensing images. The reconstructed images have better visual quality since edges and other sharp details are preserved.

  14. Single crystalline essentially cubic hafnium, zirconium pyrophosphate luminescent material having improved brightness

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chenot, C.F.; Mathrs, J.E.; Shaffer, F.N.


    It has been discovered that when (Hf,Zr) P 2 O 5 is prepared by reacting a mixutre of MO 2 , A 2 O and P 2 O 5 . (where M is zirconium, and A is an alkali metal, lithium, sodium or potassium), large single-crystalline cubic particles result, which when separated from an aqueous-soluble alkali metal-containing second phase exhibit improved intensity of ultraviolet emissions upon x-ray excitation. When used in x-ray intensifying screens with conventional silver halide emulsion x-ray film, such improved lumiescent material The invention includes material of the composition (Hfsub(1-x)Zrsub(x)) P 2 O 7 , where range from 0 to 1, having strong emission peaking at about 340 nm with controlled persistence, and also includes a method for producing such luminescent materials, and x-ray intensifying screens incorporating such materials having values of x within the range of about 0.005 to 0.5. (LL)

  15. [A project to improve the validity rate for nursing staff operating single door autoclave sterilizers]. (United States)

    Chen, Chun-Hung; Li, Cheng-Chang; Chou, Chuan-Yu; Chen, Shu-Hwa


    This project was designed to improve the low validity rate for nurses responsible to operate single door autoclave sterilizers in the operating room. By investigating the current status, we found that the nursing staff validity rate of cognition on the autoclave sterilizer was 85%, and the practice operating check validity rate was only 80%. Such was due to a lack of in-service education. Problems with operation included: 1. Unsafe behaviors - not following standard procedure, lacking relevant operating knowledge and absence of a check form; 2. Unsafe environment - the conveying steam piping was typically not covered and lacked operation marks. Recommended improvement measures included: 1. holding in-service education; 2. generating an operation procedure flow chart; 3. implementing obstacle eliminating procedures; 4. covering piping to prevent fire and burns; 5. performing regular checks to ensure all procedures are followed. Following intervention, nursing staff cognition rose from 85% to 100%, while the operation validity rate rose from 80% to 100%. These changes ensure a safer operating room environment, and helps facilities move toward a zero accident rate in the healthcare environment.

  16. Improving the biophysical properties of anti-ricin single-domain antibodies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kendrick B. Turner


    Full Text Available Single-domain antibodies (sdAbs derived from heavy-chain only antibodies produced in camelids are attractive immunoreagents due to their small size, high affinity, and ability to refold and retain binding activity after denaturation. It has been observed that some sdAbs, however, exhibit undesirable properties including reduced solubility when subjected to heating or upon long-term storage at production-relevant concentrations, which can limit their usefulness. Using a multi-step, rational design approach that included consensus-sequence driven sequence repairs, the alteration of net protein charge, and the introduction of non-native disulfide bonds, augmented solubility and increased melting temperatures were achieved. The improved sdAbs tolerated storage in solution at high concentration (10 mg/mL and were able to withstand multiple cycles of heating to high temperature (70 °C. This work demonstrates a pathway for improving the biophysical characteristics of sdAbs which is essential for expanding their utility for both diagnostic as well as therapeutic applications.

  17. A Real-Time Method to Detect and Track Moving Objects (DATMO from Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs Using a Single Camera

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bruce MacDonald


    Full Text Available We develop a real-time method to detect and track moving objects (DATMO from unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs using a single camera. To address the challenging characteristics of these vehicles, such as continuous unrestricted pose variation and low-frequency vibrations, new approaches must be developed. The main concept proposed in this work is to create an artificial optical flow field by estimating the camera motion between two subsequent video frames. The core of the methodology consists of comparing this artificial flow with the real optical flow directly calculated from the video feed. The motion of the UAV between frames is estimated with available parallel tracking and mapping techniques that identify good static features in the images and follow them between frames. By comparing the two optical flows, a list of dynamic pixels is obtained and then grouped into dynamic objects. Tracking these dynamic objects through time and space provides a filtering procedure to eliminate spurious events and misdetections. The algorithms have been tested with a quadrotor platform using a commercial camera.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dragan Krivokapić


    . One of the most important publications in which this connection is emphasized is the report of the American Ministry of Health, called Physical activity and health (1996, which gives a number of useful effects on health status of people who participated in some form of physical activity. Exact minimal volume and intensity of physical activity enough to cause positive effects on health status is still unknown, so the estimation of elements of physical form related to health became important for many institutions occupied with health of people. Discussion: For each of the above mentioned elements of physical form related to health, there were different subjective and objective procedures established that can be used for their estimation. Carpensen CJ. Powell KE, Cristenson GM Besides (1985, it is very important to take into account a clear aim for which a certain estimation is done, because it enables implementation of the most appropriate protocol for estimation of each element of physical form. In that sense, subjective and objective estimation of the level of physical activity of an individual is essential for preservation and improvement of their health status. References: American College for Sports Medicine, Guildelines for exericise testing and Prescription.8th ed. Philadelphia: 2009 Lippincott Williams&Wilkins, 248-52. Carpensen CJ, Powell KE, Cristenson GM (1985. Physical activity , ehercise, and physical fitness: definitions and distinctions for healt-related research. Public Health Rep., 100(2, 126-31. U.S. Department of Healt and Human Services and Centers for DiseaseControl and Prevention. Physical Activity and health: A report of the Surgeon General. Atlanta (GA: 1996 National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, 89-90.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. A. Bosov


    Full Text Available Purpose. The development of complicated techniques of production and management processes, information systems, computer science, applied objects of systems theory and others requires improvement of mathematical methods, new approaches for researches of application systems. And the variety and diversity of subject systems makes necessary the development of a model that generalizes the classical sets and their development – sets of sets. Multiple objects unlike sets are constructed by multiple structures and represented by the structure and content. The aim of the work is the analysis of multiple structures, generating multiple objects, the further development of operations on these objects in application systems. Methodology. To achieve the objectives of the researches, the structure of multiple objects represents as constructive trio, consisting of media, signatures and axiomatic. Multiple object is determined by the structure and content, as well as represented by hybrid superposition, composed of sets, multi-sets, ordered sets (lists and heterogeneous sets (sequences, corteges. Findings. In this paper we study the properties and characteristics of the components of hybrid multiple objects of complex systems, proposed assessments of their complexity, shown the rules of internal and external operations on objects of implementation. We introduce the relation of arbitrary order over multiple objects, we define the description of functions and display on objects of multiple structures. Originality.In this paper we consider the development of multiple structures, generating multiple objects.Practical value. The transition from the abstract to the subject of multiple structures requires the transformation of the system and multiple objects. Transformation involves three successive stages: specification (binding to the domain, interpretation (multiple sites and particularization (goals. The proposed describe systems approach based on hybrid sets

  20. Improving the performance of true single molecule sequencing for ancient DNA (United States)


    Background Second-generation sequencing technologies have revolutionized our ability to recover genetic information from the past, allowing the characterization of the first complete genomes from past individuals and extinct species. Recently, third generation Helicos sequencing platforms, which perform true Single-Molecule DNA Sequencing (tSMS), have shown great potential for sequencing DNA molecules from Pleistocene fossils. Here, we aim at improving even further the performance of tSMS for ancient DNA by testing two novel tSMS template preparation methods for Pleistocene bone fossils, namely oligonucleotide spiking and treatment with DNA phosphatase. Results We found that a significantly larger fraction of the horse genome could be covered following oligonucleotide spiking however not reproducibly and at the cost of extra post-sequencing filtering procedures and skewed %GC content. In contrast, we showed that treating ancient DNA extracts with DNA phosphatase improved the amount of endogenous sequence information recovered per sequencing channel by up to 3.3-fold, while still providing molecular signatures of endogenous ancient DNA damage, including cytosine deamination and fragmentation by depurination. Additionally, we confirmed the existence of molecular preservation niches in large bone crystals from which DNA could be preferentially extracted. Conclusions We propose DNA phosphatase treatment as a mechanism to increase sequence coverage of ancient genomes when using Helicos tSMS as a sequencing platform. Together with mild denaturation temperatures that favor access to endogenous ancient templates over modern DNA contaminants, this simple preparation procedure can improve overall Helicos tSMS performance when damaged DNA templates are targeted. PMID:22574620

  1. A simple optimization can improve the performance of single feature polymorphism detection by Affymetrix expression arrays

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fujisawa Hironori


    Full Text Available Abstract Background High-density oligonucleotide arrays are effective tools for genotyping numerous loci simultaneously. In small genome species (genome size: Results We compared the single feature polymorphism (SFP detection performance of whole-genome and transcript hybridizations using the Affymetrix GeneChip® Rice Genome Array, using the rice cultivars with full genome sequence, japonica cultivar Nipponbare and indica cultivar 93-11. Both genomes were surveyed for all probe target sequences. Only completely matched 25-mer single copy probes of the Nipponbare genome were extracted, and SFPs between them and 93-11 sequences were predicted. We investigated optimum conditions for SFP detection in both whole genome and transcript hybridization using differences between perfect match and mismatch probe intensities of non-polymorphic targets, assuming that these differences are representative of those between mismatch and perfect targets. Several statistical methods of SFP detection by whole-genome hybridization were compared under the optimized conditions. Causes of false positives and negatives in SFP detection in both types of hybridization were investigated. Conclusions The optimizations allowed a more than 20% increase in true SFP detection in whole-genome hybridization and a large improvement of SFP detection performance in transcript hybridization. Significance analysis of the microarray for log-transformed raw intensities of PM probes gave the best performance in whole genome hybridization, and 22,936 true SFPs were detected with 23.58% false positives by whole genome hybridization. For transcript hybridization, stable SFP detection was achieved for highly expressed genes, and about 3,500 SFPs were detected at a high sensitivity (> 50% in both shoot and young panicle transcripts. High SFP detection performances of both genome and transcript hybridizations indicated that microarrays of a complex genome (e.g., of Oryza sativa can be

  2. Relate it! Objective and subjective evaluation of mediator-based strategies for improving source memory in younger and older adults. (United States)

    Kuhlmann, Beatrice G; Touron, Dayna R


    The present study examined younger and older adults' ability to improve their source memory for different types of sources through imaginal and verbal (sentence) mediators. Younger (18-29 years) and older (60-75 years) adults' strategy use and source memory for either text-type (bold vs italic) or person (woman vs man) sources was assessed; strategy use was either spontaneous or the generation of imaginal mediators was instructed before encoding. Younger and older adults did not differ in spontaneous use of mediator-based strategies; however, older adults generated more images but fewer verbal mediators than younger adults. Participants were able to increase mediator generation when instructed to, resulting in substantial increases in both item and source memory for the instructed conditions in both age groups. Use of verbal mediators was more likely for the more concrete person sources for which source memory was generally better. Importantly, these objective benefits of mediator-based strategies translated into subjective benefits for both younger and older adults: Increased use of either mediator type was correlated with lower experienced task difficulty; the instructions to use imaginal mediators resulted in a significant decrease in difficulty ratings on the group level. Participants were generally able to monitor mediator benefits to both item and source memory and accurately judged mediator strategies (especially imagery) as more effective than repetition; older adults, however, rated all strategies as less effective than younger adults. Implications of these findings, especially for neuropsychological studies on source monitoring, are discussed. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Laparoendoscopic Single-site Surgery (LESS) for Prophylactic Salpingo-oophorectomy Improves Cosmetic Satisfaction Compared to Standard Laparoscopy. (United States)

    Miailhe, Gregoire; Dauchy, Sarah; Bentivegna, Enrica; Gouy, Sebastien; Charles, Cecile; Delaloge, Suzette; Morice, Philippe; Uzan, Catherine


    Less invasive prophylactic bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy (PBSO) may diminish the general consequences of surgery for BRCA mutation carriers. The objective of the present study was to compare the psychological impact and satisfaction following minimal-invasive laparoendoscopic single-site surgery (LESS) versus that observed with the standard procedure. This prospective longitudinal study was proposed to all consecutive patients who underwent ambulatory PBSO between January 2012 and January 2014 at our Center. The psychological impact and esthetic satisfaction were prospectively studied. Patients rated their satisfaction using the 4-grade Likert scale. Their emotional state and postoperative pain were explored respectively with validated questionnaires (IES-R, PANAS) and the Verbal Numerical Rating Scale (VNRS). Operative outcomes were also analyzed. Twenty patients underwent LESS PBSO and 10 patients had the standard laparoscopic (SL) PBSO. The mean satisfaction scores were significantly higher in the LESS group one month and six months after surgery. Both groups reported a reduction of intrusive thoughts and negative affects after surgery. Postoperative pain and operative outcomes were similar. A significant improvement of cosmetic satisfaction after LESS compared to SL could help patients accept PBSO. The emotional impact of PBSO is not modified by ambulatory LESS. Copyright© 2015 International Institute of Anticancer Research (Dr. John G. Delinassios), All rights reserved.

  4. Protein-fold recognition using an improved single-source K diverse shortest paths algorithm. (United States)

    Lhota, John; Xie, Lei


    Protein structure prediction, when construed as a fold recognition problem, is one of the most important applications of similarity search in bioinformatics. A new protein-fold recognition method is reported which combines a single-source K diverse shortest path (SSKDSP) algorithm with Enrichment of Network Topological Similarity (ENTS) algorithm to search a graphic feature space generated using sequence similarity and structural similarity metrics. A modified, more efficient SSKDSP algorithm is developed to improve the performance of graph searching. The new implementation of the SSKDSP algorithm empirically requires 82% less memory and 61% less time than the current implementation, allowing for the analysis of larger, denser graphs. Furthermore, the statistical significance of fold ranking generated from SSKDSP is assessed using ENTS. The reported ENTS-SSKDSP algorithm outperforms original ENTS that uses random walk with restart for the graph search as well as other state-of-the-art protein structure prediction algorithms HHSearch and Sparks-X, as evaluated by a benchmark of 600 query proteins. The reported methods may easily be extended to other similarity search problems in bioinformatics and chemoinformatics. The SSKDSP software is available at © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  5. Single Agent Polysaccharopeptide Delays Metastases and Improves Survival in Naturally Occurring Hemangiosarcoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dorothy Cimino Brown


    Full Text Available The 2008 World Health Organization World Cancer Report describes global cancer incidence soaring with many patients living in countries that lack resources for cancer control. Alternative treatment strategies that can reduce the global disease burden at manageable costs must be developed. Polysaccharopeptide (PSP is the bioactive agent from the mushroom Coriolus versicolor. Studies indicate PSP has in vitro antitumor activities and inhibits the growth of induced tumors in animal models. Clear evidence of clinically relevant benefits of PSP in cancer patients, however, is lacking. The investment of resources required to complete large-scale, randomized controlled trials of PSP in cancer patients is more easily justified if antitumor and survival benefits are documented in a complex animal model of a naturally occurring cancer that parallels human disease. Because of its high metastatic rate and vascular origin, canine hemangiosarcoma is used for investigations in antimetastatic and antiangiogenic therapies. In this double-blind randomized multidose pilot study, high-dose PSP significantly delayed the progression of metastases and afforded the longest survival times reported in canine hemangiosarcoma. These data suggest that, for those cancer patients for whom advanced treatments are not accessible, PSP as a single agent might offer significant improvements in morbidity and mortality.

  6. Single dose oral ranitidine improves MRCP image quality: a double-blind study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bowes, M.T. [South Manchester University Hospitals NHS Trust, Wythenshawe, Manchester (United Kingdom); Martin, D.F. [South Manchester University Hospitals NHS Trust, Wythenshawe, Manchester (United Kingdom)]. E-mail:; Melling, A. [South Manchester University Hospitals NHS Trust, Wythenshawe, Manchester (United Kingdom); Roberts, D. [South Manchester University Hospitals NHS Trust, Wythenshawe, Manchester (United Kingdom); Laasch, H.-U. [South Manchester University Hospitals NHS Trust, Wythenshawe, Manchester (United Kingdom); Sukumar, S. [South Manchester University Hospitals NHS Trust, Wythenshawe, Manchester (United Kingdom); Morris, J. [South Manchester University Hospitals NHS Trust, Wythenshawe, Manchester (United Kingdom)


    Aim: To investigate the possibility of whether a single 300 mg dose of ranitidine given orally 2-3 h before magnetic resonance cholangiopancreatography (MRCP) could reduce the signal from the stomach and duodenum, and thus increase the conspicuousness of the biliary tree. Materials and methods: Thirty-five volunteers (22 female, 13 male), (age range 21-50) were underwent MRCP in a double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized, crossover trial on a Philips Intera 1.5 T machine using a phased array surface coil. Imaging was carried out in the coronal oblique plane. Six 40 mm sections were acquired at varying angles to delineate the biliary tree and pancreatic duct. The 70 examinations were blindly scored by three consultants experienced in cholangiography. Results: After ranitidine administration there was a significant decrease in signal from the stomach (mean = 17.7, p = 0.0005, CI 10, 25.3) and duodenum (mean = 18.4, p = 0.0005, 95%CI 9.6, 27.1) with a significant increase in conspicuousness of the distal common duct (mean = 7.7, p = 0.033, 95%CI 0.7, 14.7) and proximal common duct (mean = 8.7, p = 0.010 CI 2.2, 15.2). There were no adverse effects. Conclusion: Oral ranitidine is a cheap and effective agent to decrease signal from the upper gastrointestinal tract and to improve visibility of the biliary tree.

  7. Single dose oral ranitidine improves MRCP image quality: a double-blind study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bowes, M.T.; Martin, D.F.; Melling, A.; Roberts, D.; Laasch, H.-U.; Sukumar, S.; Morris, J.


    Aim: To investigate the possibility of whether a single 300 mg dose of ranitidine given orally 2-3 h before magnetic resonance cholangiopancreatography (MRCP) could reduce the signal from the stomach and duodenum, and thus increase the conspicuousness of the biliary tree. Materials and methods: Thirty-five volunteers (22 female, 13 male), (age range 21-50) were underwent MRCP in a double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized, crossover trial on a Philips Intera 1.5 T machine using a phased array surface coil. Imaging was carried out in the coronal oblique plane. Six 40 mm sections were acquired at varying angles to delineate the biliary tree and pancreatic duct. The 70 examinations were blindly scored by three consultants experienced in cholangiography. Results: After ranitidine administration there was a significant decrease in signal from the stomach (mean = 17.7, p = 0.0005, CI 10, 25.3) and duodenum (mean = 18.4, p = 0.0005, 95%CI 9.6, 27.1) with a significant increase in conspicuousness of the distal common duct (mean = 7.7, p = 0.033, 95%CI 0.7, 14.7) and proximal common duct (mean = 8.7, p = 0.010 CI 2.2, 15.2). There were no adverse effects. Conclusion: Oral ranitidine is a cheap and effective agent to decrease signal from the upper gastrointestinal tract and to improve visibility of the biliary tree

  8. Brace modification improves aerobic performance in Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease: a single-subject design. (United States)

    Bean, J; Walsh, A; Frontera, W


    Ankle-foot orthoses (AFOs) can lower energy expenditure in patients with hemiplegia by 10%-13%. Review of the lower motor injury literature reveals insufficient physiologic evidence supporting the use or modification of AFOs in patients with lower motor neuron injury and, specifically, progressive conditions such as Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease. We sought to test the hypothesis that optimal AFOs would improve submaximal aerobic performance and submaximal perceived exertion, while producing no change in maximal aerobic capacity. In an individual with Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, a single-subject design study was used. An A-B-A design was used, with "A" corresponding to use of the patient's old AFOs and "B" corresponding to the newly prescribed AFOs. The subject underwent treadmill exercise tolerance testing using a modified Balke protocol. Indirect calorimetry was used to measure oxygen consumption per unit time (VO2), and the Borg scale was used to measure perceived exertion. At the same submaximal exercise intensities, VO2, rate-pressure product, and perceived exertion were all reduced when using the modified AFOs. Additionally, these conditions allowed the subject to conduct the treadmill exercise test 20% longer. Maximal VO2 remained constant under all conditions. Optimizing the AFO prescription in a patient with Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease can enhance physiologic performance and perceived exertion at submaximal activity levels. Larger controlled trials are necessary to further demonstrate such benefits in patients with progressive neuropathy and other causes of lower motor neuron injury.

  9. Improved single-cell gel electrophoresis assay for detecting DNA damage in Eisenia foetida. (United States)

    Di Marzio, Walter D; Saenz, María E; Lemière, Sebastien; Vasseur, Paule


    The earthworm (Eisenia foetida) is an attractive sentinel species for detecting genotoxicity in soil. In this study, an improved single-cell gel electrophoresis (SCGE) assay was developed for detecting DNA damage in the coelomocytes (lymphocytes) of earthworms. Coelomocytes were obtained from the coelomic fluid using a modified extrusion medium that did not include the mucolytic agent guaiacol. The extruded coelomocytes contained at least three types of cells: eleocytes (75% of the total), amoebocytes, and granulocytes. The DNA migration parameters were determined for untreated cells of each type in order that the assay could be performed with minimum inter- and intra-individual variation. In addition, lysis time was reduced to 10 min, and only one neutralization step was used. DNA damage was detected in isolated eleocytes treated with hydrogen peroxide and cadmium, and in eleocytes from earthworms exposed for up to 21 days to soil containing polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. The SCGE assay using earthworm eleocytes appears to be a sensitive biomarker for evaluating exposure to genotoxic compounds.

  10. Development of Pathways to Achieve the SE4ALL Energy Efficiency Objective: Global and Regional Potential for Energy Efficiency Improvements

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gregg, Jay Sterling; Balyk, Olexandr; Pérez, Cristian Hernán Cabrera

    . Double the share of renewable energy in global final energy from 18% to 36% by 2030. The integrated assessment model, ETSAP-TIAM, was used in this study to compare, from an economic optimization point of view, different scenarios for the development of the energy system between 2010 and 2030....... This analysis is conducted on a global and regional scale. The scenarios were constructed to analyze the effect of achieving the SE4ALL energy efficiency objective, the SE4ALL renewable energy objective, both together, and all three SE4ALL objectives. Synergies exist between renewable energy and energy...... efficiency. When the SE4ALL renewable energy objective is achieved, the economically optimal solution produced by ETSAP-TIAM also includes a reduction in energy intensity: globally, the compound annual reduction in energy intensity of GDP is 1.8% when the renewable energy objective is achieved. Likewise...

  11. Improving assessment of daily energy expenditure by identifying types of physical activity with a single accelerometer. (United States)

    Bonomi, A G; Plasqui, G; Goris, A H C; Westerterp, K R


    Accelerometers are often used to quantify the acceleration of the body in arbitrary units (counts) to measure physical activity (PA) and to estimate energy expenditure. The present study investigated whether the identification of types of PA with one accelerometer could improve the estimation of energy expenditure compared with activity counts. Total energy expenditure (TEE) of 15 subjects was measured with the use of double-labeled water. The physical activity level (PAL) was derived by dividing TEE by sleeping metabolic rate. Simultaneously, PA was measured with one accelerometer. Accelerometer output was processed to calculate activity counts per day (AC(D)) and to determine the daily duration of six types of common activities identified with a classification tree model. A daily metabolic value (MET(D)) was calculated as mean of the MET compendium value of each activity type weighed by the daily duration. TEE was predicted by AC(D) and body weight and by AC(D) and fat-free mass, with a standard error of estimate (SEE) of 1.47 MJ/day, and 1.2 MJ/day, respectively. The replacement in these models of AC(D) with MET(D) increased the explained variation in TEE by 9%, decreasing SEE by 0.14 MJ/day and 0.18 MJ/day, respectively. The correlation between PAL and MET(D) (R(2) = 51%) was higher than that between PAL and AC(D) (R(2) = 46%). We conclude that identification of activity types combined with MET intensity values improves the assessment of energy expenditure compared with activity counts. Future studies could develop models to objectively assess activity type and intensity to further increase accuracy of the energy expenditure estimation.

  12. Improvement of single detector proton radiography by incorporating intensity of time-resolved dose rate functions (United States)

    Zhang, Rongxiao; Jee, Kyung-Wook; Cascio, Ethan; Sharp, Gregory C.; Flanz, Jacob B.; Lu, Hsiao-Ming


    Proton radiography, which images patients with the same type of particles as those with which they are to be treated, is a promising approach to image guidance and water equivalent path length (WEPL) verification in proton radiation therapy. We have shown recently that proton radiographs could be obtained by measuring time-resolved dose rate functions (DRFs) using an x-ray amorphous silicon flat panel. The WEPL values were derived solely from the root-mean-square (RMS) of DRFs, while the intensity information in the DRFs was filtered out. In this work, we explored the use of such intensity information for potential improvement in WEPL accuracy and imaging quality. Three WEPL derivation methods based on, respectively, the RMS only, the intensity only, and the intensity-weighted RMS were tested and compared in terms of the quality of obtained radiograph images and the accuracy of WEPL values. A Gammex CT calibration phantom containing inserts made of various tissue substitute materials with independently measured relative stopping powers (RSP) was used to assess the imaging performances. Improved image quality with enhanced interfaces was achieved while preserving the accuracy by using intensity information in the calibration. Other objects, including an anthropomorphic head phantom, a proton therapy range compensator, a frozen lamb’s head and an ‘image quality phantom’ were also imaged. Both the RMS only and the intensity-weighted RMS methods derived RSPs within  ±  1% for most of the Gammex phantom inserts, with a mean absolute percentage error of 0.66% for all inserts. In the case of the insert with a titanium rod, the method based on RMS completely failed, whereas that based on the intensity-weighted RMS was qualitatively valid. The use of intensity greatly enhanced the interfaces between different materials in the obtained WEPL images, suggesting the potential for image guidance in areas such as patient positioning and tumor tracking by proton

  13. Metropolitan Transportation Commission, San Francisco Bay area : developing regional objectives and performance measures to improve system operations (United States)


    The Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) uses an objectives-driven, performance-based approach in its transportation planning for the San Francisco Bay Area. This approach focuses attention on transportation investments of highest priority. T...

  14. Estimated capacity of object files in visual short-term memory is not improved by retrieval cueing. (United States)

    Saiki, Jun; Miyatsuji, Hirofumi


    Visual short-term memory (VSTM) has been claimed to maintain three to five feature-bound object representations. Some results showing smaller capacity estimates for feature binding memory have been interpreted as the effects of interference in memory retrieval. However, change-detection tasks may not properly evaluate complex feature-bound representations such as triple conjunctions in VSTM. To understand the general type of feature-bound object representation, evaluation of triple conjunctions is critical. To test whether interference occurs in memory retrieval for complete object file representations in a VSTM task, we cued retrieval in novel paradigms that directly evaluate the memory for triple conjunctions, in comparison with a simple change-detection task. In our multiple object permanence tracking displays, observers monitored for a switch in feature combination between objects during an occlusion period, and we found that a retrieval cue provided no benefit with the triple conjunction tasks, but significant facilitation with the change-detection task, suggesting that low capacity estimates of object file memory in VSTM reflect a limit on maintenance, not retrieval.

  15. Improving SVT discrimination in single-chamber ICDs: a new electrogram morphology-based algorithm. (United States)

    Klein, George J; Gillberg, Jeffrey M; Tang, Anthony; Inbar, Shmuel; Sharma, Arjun; Unterberg-Buchwald, Christina; Dorian, Paul; Moore, Hans; Duru, Firat; Rooney, Ethan; Becker, Daniel; Schaaf, Katie; Benditt, David


    Wide-spread adoption of ICD therapy has focused efforts on improving the quality of life for patients by reducing "inappropriate" shock therapies. To this end, distinguishing supraventricular tachycardia from ventricular tachycardia remains a major challenge for ICDs. More sophisticated discrimination algorithms based on ventricular electrogram morphology have been made practicable by the increased computational ability of modern ICDs. We report results from a large prospective study (1,122 pts) of a new ventricular electrogram morphology tachycardia discrimination algorithm (Wavelet Dynamic Discrimination, Medtronic, Minneapolis, MN, USA) operating at minimal algorithm setting (RV coil-can electrogram, match threshold of 70%). This is a nonrandomized cohort study of ICD patients using the morphology discrimination of the Wavelet algorithm to distinguish SVT and VT/VF. The Wavelet criterion was required ON in all patients and all other supraventricular tachycardia discriminators were required to be OFF. Spontaneous episodes (N = 2,235) eligible for ICD therapy were adjudicated for detection algorithm performance. The generalized estimating equations method was used to remove bias introduced when an individual patient contributes multiple episodes. Inappropriate therapies for supraventricular tachycardia were reduced by 78% (90% CI: 72.8-82.9%) for episodes within the range of rates where Wavelet was programmed to discriminate. Sensitivity for sustained ventricular tachycardia was 98.6% (90% CI: 97-99.3%) without the use of high-rate time out. Results from this prospective study of the Wavelet electrogram morphology discrimination algorithm operating as the sole discriminator in the ON mode demonstrate that inappropriate therapy for supraventricular tachycardia in a single-chamber ICD can be dramatically reduced compared to rate detection alone.

  16. Single aortic clamping in coronary artery bypass surgery reduces cerebral embolism and improves neurocognitive outcomes. (United States)

    Gasparovic, Hrvoje; Borojevic, Marko; Malojcic, Branko; Gasparovic, Kristina; Biocina, Bojan


    Aortic manipulation releases embolic material, thereby enhancing the probability of adverse neurologic outcomes following coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG). We prospectively evaluated 59 patients undergoing CABG. Patients in the single (SC, n = 37) and multiple clamp (MC, n = 22) groups were comparable in relation to age and operative risk (p > 0.05). Neurocognitive evaluation consisted of the Auditory Verbal Learning Test (AVLT), Color Trails Test A, the Grooved Pegboard test and the Mini-Mental State Examination. Data acquisition was performed preoperatively, early postoperatively and at the 4-month follow-up. Intraoperative transcranial Doppler (TCD) monitoring was used to quantify the embolic load in relation to different aortic clamping strategies. Preoperative neurocognitive results were similar between the groups (p > 0.05). The incidence of postoperative delirium was greater in the MC group but this failed to reach statistical significance (23% vs 8%, p = 0.14). SC patients had fewer embolization signals (270 ± 181 vs 465 ± 160, p < 0.0001). Early postoperative neurocognitive results were depressed in comparison to preoperative values in both groups (p < 0.05 for multiple comparisons). The magnitude of this cognitive depression was greater in the MC group (p < 0.05 for multiple comparisons). Preoperative levels of neurocognition were restored at follow-up in the SC group in all tests except the AVLT. A trend towards improvements in neurocognitive performances at follow-up was also observed in the MC group. Residual attention, motor skill and memory deficits were, however, documented with multiple tests. In conclusion, the embolic burden was significantly lower in the SC group. This TCD imaging outcome translated into fewer early cognition deficits and superior late restoration of function.

  17. An equalised global graphical model-based approach for multi-camera object tracking


    Chen, Weihua; Cao, Lijun; Chen, Xiaotang; Huang, Kaiqi


    Non-overlapping multi-camera visual object tracking typically consists of two steps: single camera object tracking and inter-camera object tracking. Most of tracking methods focus on single camera object tracking, which happens in the same scene, while for real surveillance scenes, inter-camera object tracking is needed and single camera tracking methods can not work effectively. In this paper, we try to improve the overall multi-camera object tracking performance by a global graph model with...

  18. A Model for Improving the Health and Quality of Life of Single ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    AJRH Managing Editor

    Among the impoverished population of coastal Kenya, there is a rapidly growing group of young single mothers who suffer from adverse health outcomes, incomplete schooling, social ostracism by their communities, and economic hardship. To address this problem, in 2008 the Single Mothers Program (SMP) selected a ...

  19. Quality control metrics improve repeatability and reproducibility of single-nucleotide variants derived from whole-genome sequencing. (United States)

    Zhang, W; Soika, V; Meehan, J; Su, Z; Ge, W; Ng, H W; Perkins, R; Simonyan, V; Tong, W; Hong, H


    Although many quality control (QC) methods have been developed to improve the quality of single-nucleotide variants (SNVs) in SNV-calling, QC methods for use subsequent to single-nucleotide polymorphism-calling have not been reported. We developed five QC metrics to improve the quality of SNVs using the whole-genome-sequencing data of a monozygotic twin pair from the Korean Personal Genome Project. The QC metrics improved both repeatability between the monozygotic twin pair and reproducibility between SNV-calling pipelines. We demonstrated the QC metrics improve reproducibility of SNVs derived from not only whole-genome-sequencing data but also whole-exome-sequencing data. The QC metrics are calculated based on the reference genome used in the alignment without accessing the raw and intermediate data or knowing the SNV-calling details. Therefore, the QC metrics can be easily adopted in downstream association analysis.

  20. Improving the ability of image sensors to detect faint stars and moving objects using image deconvolution techniques. (United States)

    Fors, Octavi; Núñez, Jorge; Otazu, Xavier; Prades, Albert; Cardinal, Robert D


    In this paper we show how the techniques of image deconvolution can increase the ability of image sensors as, for example, CCD imagers, to detect faint stars or faint orbital objects (small satellites and space debris). In the case of faint stars, we show that this benefit is equivalent to double the quantum efficiency of the used image sensor or to increase the effective telescope aperture by more than 30% without decreasing the astrometric precision or introducing artificial bias. In the case of orbital objects, the deconvolution technique can double the signal-to-noise ratio of the image, which helps to discover and control dangerous objects as space debris or lost satellites. The benefits obtained using CCD detectors can be extrapolated to any kind of image sensors.

  1. Concept Maps as Instructional Tools for Improving Learning of Phase Transitions in Object-Oriented Analysis and Design (United States)

    Shin, Shin-Shing


    Students attending object-oriented analysis and design (OOAD) courses typically encounter difficulties transitioning from requirements analysis to logical design and then to physical design. Concept maps have been widely used in studies of user learning. The study reported here, based on the relationship of concept maps to learning theory and…

  2. Systematic Review of Physical Activity Objectives in Extension Strategic Plans: Findings and Implications for Improved Public Health Impact (United States)

    Harden, Samantha M.; Lindsay, Anne; Everette, Alicia; Gunter, Katherine B.


    Extension programming that incorporates both physical activity and dietary behaviors is necessary for the prevention of certain chronic diseases, including obesity. The purpose of the study presented here was to systematically identify the presence of physical activity objectives in the strategic plan for each Extension system in the United…

  3. Toward Improved Calibration of Hydrologic Models: Multi-objective Analysis of Streamflow and SWE Modeling Errors in Mountainous Regions (United States)

    Barth, C.; Boyle, D. P.; Bastidas, L. A.; Schumer, R.


    In many of the mountainous regions of the western United States, much of the streamflow runoff at the mountain front originates as melt water from snow. As a result, many hydrologic models applied in these regions have components that represent the snow water equivalent (SWE) throughout the accumulation and depletion processes of the snow pack. The limited number of point observations of SWE in these regions, however, generally precludes an accurate estimate of the spatial and temporal distribution of SWE in most model applications. As a result, hydrologic model calibration and evaluation is generally focused on the fitting of simulated streamflow to observed streamflow data. In this study, we examine the utility of SWE estimates obtained from the Snow Data Assimilation System (SNODAS) product as a surrogate for SWE observations in the calibration and evaluation of the Precipitation-Runoff Modeling System (PRMS). Specifically, we employ a multi-objective analysis of several streamflow behaviors (e.g., rising limb, falling limb, and baseflow) and snow pack behaviors (e.g., accumulation, depletion, and no snow) aimed at better understanding the sensitivities of the different behaviors to changes in values of specific PRMS model parameters. The multi-objective approach is carried out with the Multi-Objective Generalized Sensitivity Analysis (MOGSA) algorithm and the Multi-Objective Complex Evolution (MOCOM).

  4. How to constrain multi-objective calibrations using water balance components for an improved realism of model results (United States)

    Accurate discharge simulation is one of the most common objectives of hydrological modeling studies. However, a good simulation of discharge is not necessarily the result of a realistic simulation of hydrological processes within the catchment. To enhance the realism of model results, we propose an ...

  5. Improving Genetic Evaluation of Litter Size Using a Single-step Model

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Guo, Xiangyu; Christensen, Ole Fredslund; Ostersen, Tage

    A recently developed single-step method allows genetic evaluation based on information from phenotypes, pedigree and markers simultaneously. This paper compared reliabilities of predicted breeding values obtained from single-step method and the traditional pedigree-based method for two litter size...... traits, total number of piglets born (TNB), and litter size at five days after birth (Ls 5) in Danish Landrace and Yorkshire pigs. The results showed that the single-step method combining phenotypic and genotypic information provided more accurate predictions than the pedigree-based method, not only...

  6. Applying Data Mining Techniques to Improve Information Security in the Cloud: A Single Cache System Approach


    Amany AlShawi


    Presently, the popularity of cloud computing is gradually increasing day by day. The purpose of this research was to enhance the security of the cloud using techniques such as data mining with specific reference to the single cache system. From the findings of the research, it was observed that the security in the cloud could be enhanced with the single cache system. For future purposes, an Apriori algorithm can be applied to the single cache system. This can be applied by all cloud providers...

  7. An Improved Particle Swarm Optimization for Selective Single Machine Scheduling with Sequence Dependent Setup Costs and Downstream Demands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kun Li


    Full Text Available This paper investigates a special single machine scheduling problem derived from practical industries, namely, the selective single machine scheduling with sequence dependent setup costs and downstream demands. Different from traditional single machine scheduling, this problem further takes into account the selection of jobs and the demands of downstream lines. This problem is formulated as a mixed integer linear programming model and an improved particle swarm optimization (PSO is proposed to solve it. To enhance the exploitation ability of the PSO, an adaptive neighborhood search with different search depth is developed based on the decision characteristics of the problem. To improve the search diversity and make the proposed PSO algorithm capable of getting out of local optimum, an elite solution pool is introduced into the PSO. Computational results based on extensive test instances show that the proposed PSO can obtain optimal solutions for small size problems and outperform the CPLEX and some other powerful algorithms for large size problems.

  8. A method for indication and improving the position stability of the bubble in single-bubble cavitation experiments (United States)

    Plocek, Jaroslav


    A newly developed method for indication of the bubble state in classical single-bubble cavitation experiments is introduced. The method is based on processing the signal from a sensor, positioned on the flask from outside. The technical means of the method are further explored to improve the position stability of the bubble.

  9. Improvement in hamstring and quadriceps muscle strength following cruciate-retaining single radius total knee arthroplasty. (United States)

    Kurowicki, Jennifer; Khlopas, Anton; Sultan, Assem A; Sodhi, Nipun; Samuel, Linsen T; Chughtai, Morad; Roche, Martin; Bonutti, Peter M; Mont, Michael A


    The ability to reach full functional capacity following total knee arthroplasty (TKA) is reliant on the strength of the quadriceps and hamstring muscles. Weakness of these muscles can persist anywhere from 1 to 3 years post-operatively. There remains considerable controversy as to what factors influence restoration of muscle strength after TKA. Implant designs have been implicated in the ability of patients to recover. Currently there is a paucity of literature available describing the influence of patient characteristics, surgical factors, and clinical outcomes on quadriceps and hamstring muscle strength following TKA with a cruciate-retaining, single radius (SR) implant. For this reason, we sought to investigate TKA patients for: (I) quadriceps muscle strength; (II) hamstring muscle strength; (III) flexion/extension (F/E) ratio; (IV) clinical outcome scores; (V) influence of patient characteristics on muscle strength at one-year post-operatively. A review of TKA patients who were assessed for hamstring and quadriceps muscle strength was conducted. A total of 39 patients (26 men and 13 women), who had a mean age of 68 years (range, 51 to 88 years) were included. Isokinetic dynamometer testing at 180 degree/second for 3 sets of 10 repetitions in extension and flexion were performed by an independent physical therapist to assess dynamic concentric torque of the hamstrings and quadriceps muscle. F/E ratios were calculated. TKA was performed via subvastus (n=20) or midvastus (n=19) approach. Subgroup analysis for surgical approach, concomitant spinal pathology (n=11), gender, age and body mass index (BMI) were performed. Knee Society Scores (KSS) and range of motion (ROM) were assessed at each visit. Comparisons of groups were performed using paired t -tests. Mean postoperative relative extension torque was 23 Nm/kg (range, 9 to 43 Nm/kg), representing a mean increase of 38% (range, -16% to 100%; P=0.0267) from pre-operative status. A mean increase of 27% (range, -15

  10. Investigating and improving student understanding of quantum mechanics in the context of single photon interference (United States)

    Marshman, Emily; Singh, Chandralekha


    Single photon experiments involving a Mach-Zehnder interferometer can illustrate the fundamental principles of quantum mechanics, e.g., the wave-particle duality of a single photon, single photon interference, and the probabilistic nature of quantum measurement involving single photons. These experiments explicitly make the connection between the abstract quantum theory and concrete laboratory settings and have the potential to help students develop a solid grasp of the foundational issues in quantum mechanics. Here we describe students' conceptual difficulties with these topics in the context of Mach-Zehnder interferometer experiments with single photons and how the difficulties found in written surveys and individual interviews were used as a guide in the development of a Quantum Interactive Learning Tutorial (QuILT). The QuILT uses an inquiry-based approach to learning and takes into account the conceptual difficulties found via research to help upper-level undergraduate and graduate students learn about foundational quantum mechanics concepts using the concrete quantum optics context. It strives to help students learn the basics of quantum mechanics in the context of single photon experiment, develop the ability to apply fundamental quantum principles to experimental situations in quantum optics, and explore the differences between classical and quantum ideas in a concrete context. We discuss the findings from in-class evaluations suggesting that the QuILT was effective in helping students learn these abstract concepts.

  11. [Preventive measures for improvement of suitability of water from individual water supply objects in the areas ravaged by war]. (United States)

    Venus, Miroslav


    The aim of this article was to test the success of sanation of unsatisfactory individual water supply objects in the areas ravages of war. 198 individual water supply objects were consolidated in the area of Voćin, with hyperchlorination and pumping out of water, after which desinfection with chlorine preparation was carried out. Samples of drinking water taken for bacteriological analysis were analyzed on total coliform bacteria, fecal coliform bacteria and fecal streptococci by method of membranous filtration, while the number of colonies of aerobic bacteria at 22 degrees C and 37 degrees C were determined on triptosis-glucosis-yeast agar. Good samples, considering the Regulations on health suitability of drinking water, were 152, or 77%. In unfit samples, which were 46, or 23%, the most common isolates were fecal streptococci, with frequency of 30%. Although public waterworks represent the best way to supply people with good drinking water, it is possible to achieve a satisfactory degree of water quality from individual water supply objects with implementation of public health activities, if we execute them periodically and professionally.

  12. Improvement of the Positioning Accuracy of a Single Frequency Receiver using Observables of the Dual GPS Reference Stations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Byung-Kyu Choi


    Full Text Available With the growth of civil and commercial applications, the Global Navigation Satellite System(GNSS that provides the positioning, navigation, and timing information affects to our life. In order to meet all the requirements of civilian user, new positioning technology with the accuracy of 10cm level has been applied and the positioning accuracy is getting improved. In this study, dual coverage(DAEJ, SUWN GPS measurements were applied to improve the positioning accuracy for GPS L1 single frequency users. We processed some GPS data obtained from the distributed test sites in the wide area over Korea Peninsula. As a result, the combined solution output using dual coverage showed more improved positioning accuracy than that of single coverage.

  13. Improving Interactions between a Power-Assist Robot System and Its Human User in Horizontal Transfer of Objects Using a Novel Adaptive Control Method

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. M. Mizanoor Rahman


    Full Text Available Power assist systems are usually used for rehabilitation, healthcare, and so forth.This paper puts emphasis on the use of power assist systems for object transfer and thus brings a novelty in the power-assist applications. However, the interactions between the systems and the human users are usually not satisfactory because human features are not included in the control design. In this paper, we present the development of a 1-DOF power assist system for horizontal transfer of objects. We included human features such as weight perception in the system dynamics and control. We then simulated the system using MATLAB/Simulink for transferring objects with it and (i determined the optimum maneuverability conditions for object transfer, (ii determined psychophysical relationships between actual and perceived weights, and (iii analyzed load forces and motion features. We then used the findings to design a novel adaptive control scheme to improve the interactions between the user and the system. We implemented the novel control (simulated the system again using the novel control, the subjects evaluated the system, and the results showed that the novel control reduced the excessive load forces and accelerations and thus improved the human-system interactions in terms of maneuverability, safety, and so forth. Finally, we proposed to use the findings to develop power assist systems for manipulating heavy objects in industries that may improve interactions between the systems and the users.

  14. Does playing a sports active video game improve object control skills of children with autism spectrum disorder?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jacqueline Edwards


    Conclusion: The use of AVGs as a play-based intervention may not provide enough opportunity for children to perform the correct movement patterns to influence skill. However, play of such games may influence perceptions of skill ability in children with ASD, which could improve motivation to participate in physical activities.

  15. Object and Objective Lost?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lopdrup-Hjorth, Thomas


    This paper explores the erosion and problematization of ‘the organization’ as a demarcated entity. Utilizing Foucault's reflections on ‘state-phobia’ as a source of inspiration, I show how an organization-phobia has gained a hold within Organization Theory (OT). By attending to the history...... of this organization-phobia, the paper argues that OT has become increasingly incapable of speaking about its core object. I show how organizations went from being conceptualized as entities of major importance to becoming theoretically deconstructed and associated with all kinds of ills. Through this history......, organizations as distinct entities have been rendered so problematic that they have gradually come to be removed from the center of OT. The costs of this have been rather significant. Besides undermining the grounds that gave OT intellectual credibility and legitimacy to begin with, the organization-phobia...

  16. Improving Formate and Methanol Fuels: Catalytic Activity of Single Pd Coated Carbon Nanotubes. (United States)

    Li, Xiuting; Hodson, Hannah; Batchelor-McAuley, Christopher; Shao, Lidong; Compton, Richard G


    The oxidations of formate and methanol on nitrogen-doped carbon nanotubes decorated with palladium nanoparticles were studied at both the single-nanotube and ensemble levels. Significant voltammetric differences were seen. Pd oxide formation as a competitive reaction with formate or methanol oxidation is significantly inhibited at high overpotentials under the high mass transport conditions associated with single-particle materials in comparison with that seen with ensembles, where slower diffusion prevails. Higher electro-oxidation efficiency for the organic fuels is achieved.

  17. Multi objective optimization of performance parameters of a single cylinder diesel engine running with hydrogen using a Taguchi-fuzzy based approach

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bose, Probir Kumar; Deb, Madhujit; Banerjee, Rahul; Majumder, Arindam


    Environmental issues and rapid exhaustion of fossil fuels are the major concerns over the past two decades to search for alternative fuels. Among various alternatives hydrogen is a long-term renewable and least polluting fuel. Its clean burning capability helps to meet the stern emission norms. Full substitution of diesel with hydrogen may not be convenient for the time being but employing of hydrogen in a diesel engine in dual fuel mode is possible. In this experimental investigation a TMI (timed manifold injection) system has been developed using ECU (electronic control unit) with varying injection strategy to deliver hydrogen on to the intake manifold. Through adopting this technique in the existing diesel engine a momentous improvement in performance and combustion parameters has been observed. The study also attempts to explain the application of the fuzzy logic based Taguchi analysis to optimize the performance parameters i.e. BSEC (Brake specific energy consumption), Vol. Eff. (Volumetric efficiency) and BTHE (brake thermal efficiency) for the different hydrogen injection strategies. - Highlights: • A timed manifold injection system has been developed which enhances the BTHE by 31.74% at full load conditions. • Use of hydrogen-diesel dual fuel of BSEC was reduced by a maximum of 68.98% at full load condition compared to diesel. • Τhe Vol. Eff. reduced by 73.14% in dual fuel mode as compared to 77.23% at full load condition with base diesel. • A fuzzy based Taguchi's parameter design technique has been involved in multi objective optimization for prediction. • Predicted optimum combination improved BTHE and Vol. Eff. by 24.04% and 72.87% respectively and reduced BSEC by 59.03%

  18. Chronic cannabidiol treatment improves social and object recognition in double transgenic APPswe/PS1∆E9 mice. (United States)

    Cheng, David; Low, Jac Kee; Logge, Warren; Garner, Brett; Karl, Tim


    Patients suffering from Alzheimer's disease (AD) exhibit a decline in cognitive abilities including an inability to recognise familiar faces. Hallmark pathological changes in AD include the aggregation of amyloid-β (Aβ), tau protein hyperphosphorylation as well as pronounced neurodegeneration, neuroinflammation, neurotoxicity and oxidative damage. The non-psychoactive phytocannabinoid cannabidiol (CBD) exerts neuroprotective, anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory effects and promotes neurogenesis. CBD also reverses Aβ-induced spatial memory deficits in rodents. Thus we determined the therapeutic-like effects of chronic CBD treatment (20 mg/kg, daily intraperitoneal injections for 3 weeks) on the APPswe/PS1∆E9 (APPxPS1) transgenic mouse model for AD in a number of cognitive tests, including the social preference test, the novel object recognition task and the fear conditioning paradigm. We also analysed the impact of CBD on anxiety behaviours in the elevated plus maze. Vehicle-treated APPxPS1 mice demonstrated impairments in social recognition and novel object recognition compared to wild type-like mice. Chronic CBD treatment reversed these cognitive deficits in APPxPS1 mice without affecting anxiety-related behaviours. This is the first study to investigate the effect of chronic CBD treatment on cognition in an AD transgenic mouse model. Our findings suggest that CBD may have therapeutic potential for specific cognitive impairments associated with AD.

  19. A Model for Improving the Health and Quality of Life of Single ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    AJRH Managing Editor

    their contraceptive use, increased their degree of literacy, increased their individual incomes, and were more positively perceived by their communities. This study ... single mothers and their children in similar communities throughout the world. (Afr J Reprod Health 2013; 17[4]: .... Parents with drug addictions. 3rd priority to:.

  20. Improving Treatment Plan Implementation in Schools: A Meta-Analysis of Single Subject Design Studies (United States)

    Noell, George H.; Gansle, Kristin A.; Mevers, Joanna Lomas; Knox, R. Maria; Mintz, Joslyn Cynkus; Dahir, Amanda


    Twenty-nine peer-reviewed journal articles that analyzed intervention implementation in schools using single-case experimental designs were meta-analyzed. These studies reported 171 separate data paths and provided 3,991 data points. The meta-analysis was accomplished by fitting data extracted from graphs in mixed linear growth models. This…

  1. Single-atom catalysts for CO2electroreduction with significant activity and selectivity improvements. (United States)

    Back, Seoin; Lim, Juhyung; Kim, Na-Young; Kim, Yong-Hyun; Jung, Yousung


    A single-atom catalyst (SAC) has an electronic structure that is very different from its bulk counterparts, and has shown an unexpectedly high specific activity with a significant reduction in noble metal usage for CO oxidation, fuel cell and hydrogen evolution applications, although physical origins of such performance enhancements are still poorly understood. Herein, by means of density functional theory (DFT) calculations, we for the first time investigate the great potential of single atom catalysts for CO 2 electroreduction applications. In particular, we study a single transition metal atom anchored on defective graphene with single or double vacancies, denoted M@sv-Gr or M@dv-Gr, where M = Ag, Au, Co, Cu, Fe, Ir, Ni, Os, Pd, Pt, Rh or Ru, as a CO 2 reduction catalyst. Many SACs are indeed shown to be highly selective for the CO 2 reduction reaction over a competitive H 2 evolution reaction due to favorable adsorption of carboxyl (*COOH) or formate (*OCHO) over hydrogen (*H) on the catalysts. On the basis of free energy profiles, we identified several promising candidate materials for different products; Ni@dv-Gr (limiting potential U L = -0.41 V) and Pt@dv-Gr (-0.27 V) for CH 3 OH production, and Os@dv-Gr (-0.52 V) and Ru@dv-Gr (-0.52 V) for CH 4 production. In particular, the Pt@dv-Gr catalyst shows remarkable reduction in the limiting potential for CH 3 OH production compared to any existing catalysts, synthesized or predicted. To understand the origin of the activity enhancement of SACs, we find that the lack of an atomic ensemble for adsorbate binding and the unique electronic structure of the single atom catalysts as well as orbital interaction play an important role, contributing to binding energies of SACs that deviate considerably from the conventional scaling relation of bulk transition metals.

  2. Improvement of the Accuracy of the Orientation of an Object by Using a Pair of Rotating IMS (United States)

    Kajánek, Pavol; Kopáčik, Alojz


    Inertial measurement systems (IMS) belong among navigation systems which permit the monitoring of the position and orientation of an object in three-dimensional space. The functional principle of IMS is based on the integration of the output signal (acceleration and angular rate) of inertial sensors to the actual position and orientation of IMS. This integration causes the rapid accumulation of systematic IMS's errors, which leads to a rapid increase in position and orientation errors over time. The paper deals with the design of a prototype for a pair of lowcost IMSs, which are regularly rotated around their vertical axis by stepper motors. To eliminate the systematic errors of gyroscopes in the direction of the rotation axis, two counter-rotating IMSs are used. An optimal model of the data processing was developed and presented.

  3. Improvement of the Accuracy of the Orientation of an Object by Using a Pair of Rotating IMS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kajánek Pavol


    Full Text Available Inertial measurement systems (IMS belong among navigation systems which permit the monitoring of the position and orientation of an object in three-dimensional space. The functional principle of IMS is based on the integration of the output signal (acceleration and angular rate of inertial sensors to the actual position and orientation of IMS. This integration causes the rapid accumulation of systematic IMS’s errors, which leads to a rapid increase in position and orientation errors over time. The paper deals with the design of a prototype for a pair of lowcost IMSs, which are regularly rotated around their vertical axis by stepper motors. To eliminate the systematic errors of gyroscopes in the direction of the rotation axis, two counter-rotating IMSs are used. An optimal model of the data processing was developed and presented.

  4. Energy Route Multi-Objective Optimization of Wireless Power Transfer Network: An Improved Cross-Entropy Method

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lijuan Xiang


    Full Text Available This paper identifies the Wireless Power Transfer Network (WPTN as an ideal model for long-distance Wireless Power Transfer (WPT in a certain region with multiple electrical equipment. The schematic circuit and design of each power node and the process of power transmission between the two power nodes are elaborated. The Improved Cross-Entropy (ICE method is proposed as an algorithm to solve for optimal energy route. Non-dominated sorting is introduced for optimization. A demonstration of the optimization result of a 30-nodes WPTN system based on the proposed algorithm proves ICE method to be efficacious and efficiency.

  5. Can combining different risk interventions into a single formulation contribute to improved cardiovascular disease risk reduction? The single pill of amlodipine/atorvastatin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    FD Richard Hobbs


    Full Text Available FD Richard HobbsUniversity of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 2TT, UK.Abstract: In order to prevent cardiovascular events, it is essential to effectively manage overall risk of cardiovascular disease. However, despite guideline recommendations to this effect, current management of the major, modifiable cardiovascular risk factors such as hypertension and dyslipidemia is disconnected and patient adherence to therapy is poor. This is particularly important for patients with multiple cardiovascular risk factors, who are often prescribed multiple medications. The JEWEL study program investigated the use of single-pill amlodipine/atorvastatin as a strategy to improve management of these patients. The JEWEL program consisted of two 16-week, international, openlabel, multicenter, titration-to-goal studies in patients with hypertension and dyslipidemia. The two studies differed based on country of enrollment and certain tertiary endpoints, but the overall designs were very similar. Patients were enrolled from 255 centers across Canada and 13 European countries. The study was designed to assess the efficacy, safety, and utility of amlodipine/atorvastatin single pill therapy in a real-world setting. Patients were initiated at a dose of amlodipine 5 mg/atorvastatin 10 mg, unless previously treated, and were uptitrated as necessary. The primary efficacy parameter was the percentage of patients, at different levels of cardiovascular risk, achieving country-specific guideline-recommended target levels for blood pressure and lipids. A secondary analysis of efficacy measured attainment of the same single goal for blood pressure across all study participants (JEWEL I and II and the same single goal for LDL-C across all study participants (JEWEL I and II. The program utilized a newly developed questionnaire to gain better understanding of participants’ beliefs and behaviors towards medical treatment of their multiple risk factors. Approximately 2850

  6. Optimized driving of superconducting artificial atoms for improved single-qubit gates (United States)

    Chow, J. M.; Dicarlo, L.; Gambetta, J. M.; Motzoi, F.; Frunzio, L.; Girvin, S. M.; Schoelkopf, R. J.


    We employ simultaneous shaping of in-phase and out-of-phase resonant microwave drives to reduce single-qubit gate errors arising from the weak anharmonicity of transmon superconducting artificial atoms. To reduce the effect of higher levels present in the transmon spectrum, we apply Gaussian and derivative-of-Gaussian envelopes to the in-phase and out-of-phase quadratures, respectively, and optimize over their relative amplitude. Using randomized benchmarking, we obtain a minimum average error per gate of 0.007±0.005 using 4-ns-wide pulses, which is limited by decoherence. This simple optimization technique works for multiple transmons coupled to a single microwave resonator in a quantum bus architecture.

  7. Improved Design Methods for Robust Single- and Three-Phase ac-dc-ac Power Converters

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Qin, Zian

    After a century of fast developing, the society is facing energy issues again, e.g. the exhaustion of fossil fuel, emission caused air pollution, radiation leakage of nuclear generation, and so on. How to produce and use electricity in a more sustainable, efficient, and cost-effective way thus...... becomes a emerging challenge. Accordingly, installation of sustainable power generators like wind turbines and solar panels has experienced a large increase during the last decades. Meanwhile, power electronics converters, as interfaces in electrical system, are delivering approximately 80 % electricity......, the emerging challenges, and the structure of the thesis. The main content of the thesis starts with single-phase converters: Chapter 2 and Chapter 3 propose new modulation methods for single-phase B6 and H6 converters, respectively, in order to retain the same dc link voltage with two full-bridges connected...

  8. Performance improvement for GPS single frequency kinematic relative positioning under poor satellite visibility


    Chen, Wantong


    Reliable ambiguity resolution in difficult environments such as during setting/rising events of satellites or during limited satellite visibility is a significant challenge for GPS single frequency kinematic relative positioning. Here, a recursive estimation method combining both code and carrier phase measurements was developed that can tolerate recurrent satellite setting/rising and accelerate initialization in motion. We propose an ambiguity dimension expansion method by utilizing the part...

  9. Single session of integrated "Silver Yoga" program improves cardiovascular parameters in senior citizens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ananda Balayogi Bhavanani


    Conclusion: There is a healthy reduction in HR, BP and derived cardiovascular indices following a single yoga session in geriatric subjects. These changes may be attributed to enhanced harmony of cardiac autonomic function as a result of coordinated breath-body work and mind-body relaxation due to an integrated and #8220;Silver Yoga and #8221; program. [J Intercult Ethnopharmacol 2015; 4(2.000: 134-137

  10. Improved Murine Blastocyst Quality and Development in a Single Culture Medium Compared to Sequential Culture Media. (United States)

    Hennings, Justin M; Zimmer, Randall L; Nabli, Henda; Davis, J Wade; Sutovsky, Peter; Sutovsky, Miriam; Sharpe-Timms, Kathy L


    Validate single versus sequential culture media for murine embryo development. Prospective laboratory experiment. Assisted Reproduction Laboratory. Murine embryos. Thawed murine zygotes cultured for 3 or 5 days (d3 or d5) in single or sequential embryo culture media developed for human in vitro fertilization. On d3, zygotes developing to the 8 cell (8C) stage or greater were quantified using 4',6-diamidino-2-phenylindole (DAPI), and quality was assessed by morphological analysis. On d5, the number of embryos reaching the blastocyst stage was counted. DAPI was used to quantify total nuclei and inner cell mass nuclei. Localization of ubiquitin C-terminal hydrolase L1 (UCHL1) and ubiquitin C-terminal hydrolase L3 (UCHL3) was reference points for evaluating cell quality. Comparing outcomes in single versus to sequential media, the odds of embryos developing to the 8C stage on d3 were 2.34 time greater (P = .06). On d5, more embryos reached the blastocyst stage (P = culture. Human embryo studies are needed. © The Author(s) 2015.

  11. White paper of radiotherapy in France. Twelve objectives to improve one of the major cancer treatments -2013

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chauvet, Bruno; Mazeron, Jean-Jacques; Mahe, Marc-Andre; Maingon, Philippe; Mornex, Francoise; Azria, David; Barillot, Isabelle; Chauvet, Bruno; Denis, Fabrice; Lartigau, Eric; Lipinski, Francis; Maingon, Philippe; Mornex, Francoise; Ardiet, Jean-Michel; Bibault, Jean-Emmanuel; Caudrelier, Valerie; Diaz, Olivia; Crevoisier, Renaud de; Martel, Catherine de; Dubray, Bernard; Estivalet, Stephane; Faivre, Jean-Christophe; Fenoglietto, Pascal; Ferlay, Jacques; Fumagalli, Ingrid; Giraud, Philippe; Hennequin, Christophe; Henoch, Herve; Khodri, Mustapha; Lagrange, Jean-Leon; Llacer, Carmen; Lorchel, Fabrice; Mahe, Marc-Andre; Meyrieux, Charlotte; Noel, Georges; Oozeer, Rashid; Peiffert, Didier; Pourel, Nicolas; Pradier, Olivier; Rocher, Francois; Thureau, Sebastien; Eschwege, Francois; Martin, Philippe; Parmentier Gerard; Eschwege, Francois


    This white paper aims at presenting the status and perspectives of radiotherapy in France, at proposing solutions for the improvement of treatment quality and safety. Along with surgery and chemotherapy, radiotherapy is one of the major techniques of cancer treatment and the first part gives an overview of increased needs due to population ageing, of the fast technical advances (better definition of target volumes and doses, better taking into account of anatomy variations and movements), of the impact of these advances on treatment results for various types of cancer, and of the current status of equipment (a slow evolution is noticed) and future needs. The second part addresses the various professions and their demography. The third part examines how to correct the unequal access to care with respect to geography, to equipment and treatment quality, or to delay before treatment. It also evokes collaborations between centres, the diffusion of good practices, specialisation, and makes some proposals for an equal access to care. The fourth part highlights quality and security improvements due to quality control practices, recommendations, prevention actions and risk management. The next part addresses the financial aspect and makes some proposals to reduce inequalities and archaisms. It also compares costs in France and in Europe. The report then gives an overview of the administrative and professional environment and of the different involved bodies, and outlines the need of a better coordination. Patient information is discussed (patients are better informed) as well as support cares. The last parts address activities of research and development and the organisation and possibilities offered by education and training

  12. Improvement of Energy Density in Single Stator Interior Permanent Magnet Using Double Stator Topology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raja Nor Firdaus


    Full Text Available The paper presents the energy density improvement using magnetic circuit analysis of the interior permanent magnet motor. The leakage flux from the conventional structure is improved with modified magnetic circuit to improve the energy and thereby the torque value. This is approached with a double stator structure design. The proposed structure is investigated with two design variations, namely, the double stator with thin pole shoe and the double stator with thick pole shoe motors. Variations in the mechanical parameters of the all the developed models are analyzed through the finite element analysis tool. In all investigations the magnetic source is fixed in both the permanent magnet volume and coil magnetomotive force, respectively, as 400 mm3 per each pole and 480 Ampere turns per pole. From the analysis the best fit magnetic structure based on the torque characteristics is derived and is fabricated for the same volume as that of the conventional structure for performance evaluations. It is found out that there is improvement on the motor constant square density for the proposed improved magnetic circuit through the best fit double stator with thick pole shoe by about 83.66% greater than that of the conventional structure.

  13. Improving the Representation of Snow Crystal Properties Within a Single-Moment Microphysics Scheme (United States)

    Molthan, Andrew L.; Petersen, Walter A.; Case, Jonathan L.; Dembek, S. R.


    As computational resources continue their expansion, weather forecast models are transitioning to the use of parameterizations that predict the evolution of hydrometeors and their microphysical processes, rather than estimating the bulk effects of clouds and precipitation that occur on a sub-grid scale. These parameterizations are referred to as single-moment, bulk water microphysics schemes, as they predict the total water mass among hydrometeors in a limited number of classes. Although the development of single moment microphysics schemes have often been driven by the need to predict the structure of convective storms, they may also provide value in predicting accumulations of snowfall. Predicting the accumulation of snowfall presents unique challenges to forecasters and microphysics schemes. In cases where surface temperatures are near freezing, accumulated depth often depends upon the snowfall rate and the ability to overcome an initial warm layer. Precipitation efficiency relates to the dominant ice crystal habit, as dendrites and plates have relatively large surface areas for the accretion of cloud water and ice, but are only favored within a narrow range of ice supersaturation and temperature. Forecast models and their parameterizations must accurately represent the characteristics of snow crystal populations, such as their size distribution, bulk density and fall speed. These properties relate to the vertical distribution of ice within simulated clouds, the temperature profile through latent heat release, and the eventual precipitation rate measured at the surface. The NASA Goddard, single-moment microphysics scheme is available to the operational forecast community as an option within the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model. The NASA Goddard scheme predicts the occurrence of up to six classes of water mass: vapor, cloud ice, cloud water, rain, snow and either graupel or hail.

  14. Power quality improvement of single-phase photovoltaic systems through a robust synchronization method

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hadjidemetriou, Lenos; Kyriakides, Elias; Yang, Yongheng


    An increasing amount of single-phase photovoltaic (PV) systems on the distribution network requires more advanced synchronization methods in order to meet the grid codes with respect to power quality and fault ride through capability. The response of the synchronization technique selected...... to the harmonic voltage distortion without affecting the dynamic response of the synchronization. Therefore, the accurate response of the proposed MHDC-PLL enhances the power quality of the PV inverter systems and additionally, the proper fault ride-through operation of PV systems can be enabled by the fast...

  15. A Single Dose of Beetroot Gel Rich in Nitrate Does Not Improve Performance but Lowers Blood Glucose in Physically Active Individuals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julia Vasconcellos


    Full Text Available Background. Beetroot consumption has been proposed to improve exercise performance, since the nitrate content of this food is able to stimulate the synthesis of nitric oxide. Objective. The acute effect of 100 g of a beetroot gel containing ~10 mmol of nitrate was tested on the nitric oxide synthesis, on metabolic and biochemical parameters, and on performance in physically active individuals. Methods. Through a double blind, crossover, placebo-controlled study, 25 healthy runners ingested a single dose of beetroot and placebo gels. Participants performed an aerobic exercise protocol on a treadmill (3 min warm-up of 40% peak oxygen consumption, 4 min at 90% of gas exchange threshold I and 70% (Δ maximal end speed until volitional fatigue. Results. Urinary levels of nitrite and nitrate increased after 90 min of beetroot gel ingestion. Plasma glucose concentrations lowered after the exercise and the decrease was maintained for 20 min. Systolic and diastolic blood pressures, serum cortisol, and blood lactate were not altered after the beetroot gel ingestion compared to a placebo gel. Conclusion. The single dose of beetroot gel provoked an increase of nitric oxide synthesis although no improvement on the physical performance of athletes during aerobic submaximal exercise was observed.

  16. Gemini South Multi-Object Spectrograph (GMOS-S) detector Video boards upgrade: improved performance for the Hamamatsu CCDs. (United States)

    Gimeno, German; Boucher, Luc; Chiboucas, Kristin; Hibon, Pascale; Lazo, Manuel; Murowinski, Richard; Rippa, Matthew; Rogers, Rolando; Rojas, Roberto; Roth, Katherine; White, John


    GMOS-S was upgraded with new Hamamatsu CCDs on June 2014, featuring an improved red sensitivity with respect to the previous detectors and significantly less fringing. Early after the commissioning, an issue was identified when observing in any of the binned readout modes, namely that saturated pixels produced a decrease of counts with respect to the bias level in neighboring pixels. This effect, also known as 'banding', spanned the entire width of the amplifier, and while it did not destroy information, it rendered data reduction very cumbersome. Making matters worse, due to the saturation of a bad column on amplifier number 5 (on CCD2, near the middle of the focal plane), it ended up affecting the entire amplifier for almost all exposures longer than a minute. A team of Gemini instrument scientists and engineers investigated the issue and identified the root cause of the problem as originated in the ARC controller video boards. After significant lab testing, it was verified that a newly available revision of the video boards would solve the problem, though modification of the software was required in order to be compatible with them. This work was performed during the last semester of 2014 and the first semester of 2015. The new video boards were installed and commissioned during August 2015. As of September 1st, the new boards are fully installed and integrated, and the 'banding' effect has been completely eliminated. A short period of time was devoted to the recharacterization of the detector system and the new values for the gains, read noise and full well capacity have been derived. As an added benefit, the full well was increased by ~ 10 percent with respect to the previous value. The GMOS-S new detectors are now operating normally in the Gemini observing queue, and performing at full capacity.

  17. Single- and multiple-set resistance training improves skeletal and respiratory muscle strength in elderly women. (United States)

    Abrahin, Odilon; Rodrigues, Rejane P; Nascimento, Vanderson C; Da Silva-Grigoletto, Marzo E; Sousa, Evitom C; Marçal, Anderson C


    Aging involves a progressive reduction of respiratory muscle strength as well as muscle strength. Compare the effects of resistance training volume on the maximum inspiratory pressure (MIP), maximum expiratory pressure (MEP), functional performance, and muscle strength in elderly women. Thirty elderly women were randomly assigned to a group performing either single sets (1-SET) or three sets (3-SET) of exercises. The sit-to-stand test, MIP, MEP, and muscle strength were assessed before and after 24 training sessions. Progressive resistance training was performed two times per week for a total of 8-12 repetitions, using the main muscle groups of the upper and lower limbs. The main results showed that the participants significantly increased their MEP (Ptraining sessions, muscle strength also significantly increased (Ptraining programs increased MIP, MEP, muscle strength, and sit-to-stand test performance in elderly women after 24 sessions of training. In conclusion, our results suggested that elderly women who are not in the habit of physical activity may start with single-set resistance training programs as a short-term strategy for the maintenance of health.

  18. Improved performance of single-chamber microbial fuel cells through control of membrane deformation

    KAUST Repository

    Zhang, Xiaoyuan


    Cation (CEMs) and anion exchange membrane (AEMs) are commonly used in microbial fuel cells (MFCs) to enhance Coulombic efficiencies (CEs) by reducing thefluxof oxygen through the cathode to bacteriaonthe anode. AEMs typically work better than CEMs, but in initial experiments we observed the opposite using a membrane electrode assembly MFC. The reason was identified to be membrane deformation, which resulted in water and gas trapped between the membrane and cathode. To correct this, stainless steel mesh was used to press the membrane flat against the cathode. With the steel mesh, AEM performance increased to 46±4W/m3 in a single cathode MFC, and 98±14W/m3 in a double-cathode MFC. These power densities were higher than those using a CEM of 32±2W/m3 (single cathode) and 63±6W/m3 (double cathode). Higher pH gradients across the membrane and salt precipitation on the cathode were responsible for the reduced performance of the CEM compared to the AEM. CEs reached over 90% for both membranes at >2A/m2. These results demonstrate the importance of avoiding water accumulation in thin films between membranes and electrodes, and explain additional reasons for poorer performance of CEMs compared to AEMs. © 2009 Elsevier B.V.

  19. Improving bone marrow biopsy quality through peer discussion and data comparisons: A single institution experience. (United States)

    Yang, R K; Nazeef, M; Patel, S S; Mattison, R; Yang, D T; Ranheim, E A; Leith, C P


    Bone marrow biopsy (BMB) is crucial for the diagnosis, staging, and monitoring of a variety of hematologic diseases. Obtaining an adequate BMB can be challenging given the need to balance patient comfort with acquisition of high quality specimens. We had observed variable BMB quality at our institution with poor quality specimens sometimes affecting diagnosis. We thus undertook this quality improvement (QI) project to improve the quality of diagnostic BMB specimens. We used an A3 QI process to identify factors possibly influencing BMB quality. We collected baseline data on 211 BMB, with short and long-term follow-up data on a further 382 cases. We used clinical conferences to discuss data, perform peer comparisons and identify strategies to create a sustainable improvement in BMB quality. Baseline data showed that BMB length was influenced most by the individual performer, with some influence of needle gauge. Other factors such as sedation, BMB indication were noncontributory. BMB lengths improved following performer education and individual performer data comparisons (15.2 mm post vs 12.8 mm baseline, P quality, leading to easier pathology diagnosis. © 2018 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  20. Packerless single selective gravel-packed completions designed to improve recovery at Cognac Field

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rashid, O.M.


    At Cognac, a majority of the reserves are contained in complex deltaic sands. A substantial thickness of low permeability, shaly sands are overlain by high permeability, clean sands. Due to the extreme variation in productivity, flow from the lower section was observed to be non-existent or poor, in common completions over the entire sand. The ''packerless'', single-selective, gravel packed, completion scheme was designed and installed in an effort to initially produce only the lower sand sections. Subsequent production log evaluation indicated that the desired production profile was not being achieved. Several modifications were adopted on wells completed during the final phase. A production log confirmed the effectiveness of the modifications. This modified completion technique has resulted in an increase in recovery from the bottom, lower permeability sand sections and in high production rates with a minimal increase in expense.

  1. Accuracy improvement of optical vector network analyzer based on single-sideband modulation. (United States)

    Xue, Min; Pan, Shilong; Zhao, Yongjiu


    An approach to suppress the measurement errors induced by the high-order sidebands of the optical single-sideband (OSSB) signal in the OSSB-based optical vector network analyzer (OVNA) is proposed and experimentally demonstrated. An analytical model for studying the measurement errors of the OSSB-based OVNA is established. Results show that the measurement errors introduced by the high-order sidebands can be obtained by suppressing the optical carrier in the OSSB signal. By subtracting these errors from the ordinary frequency responses measured by the OVNA, accurate frequency responses can be achieved. A proof-of-concept experiment is performed. The magnitude and phase responses of a fiber Bragg grating are measured with good coincidence by the OSSB signals with different modulation indices.

  2. A Single-Phase Multilevel PV Generation System with an Improved Ripple Correlation Control MPPT Algorithm

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manel Hammami


    Full Text Available The implementation of maximum power point tracking (MPPT schemes by the ripple correlation control (RCC algorithm is presented in this paper. A reference is made to single-phase single-stage multilevel photovoltaic (PV generation systems, when the inverter input variables (PV voltage and PV current have multiple low-frequency (ripple harmonics. The harmonic analysis is carried out with reference to a multilevel configuration consisting of an H-bridge inverter and level doubling network (LDN cell, leading to the multilevel inverter having double the output voltage levels as compared to the basic H-bridge inverter topology (i.e., five levels vs. three levels. The LDN cell is basically a half-bridge fed by a floating capacitor, with self-balancing voltage capability. The multilevel configuration introduces additional PV voltage and current low-frequency harmonics, perturbing the basic implementation of the RCC scheme (based on the second harmonic component, leading to malfunctioning. The proposed RCC algorithm employs the PV current and voltage harmonics at a specific frequency for the estimation of the voltage derivative of power dP/dV (or dI/dV, driving the PV operating point toward the maximum power point (MPP in a faster and more precise manner. The steady-state and transient performances of the proposed RCC-MPPT schemes have been preliminarily tested and compared using MATLAB/Simulink. Results have been verified by experimental tests considering the whole multilevel PV generation system, including real PV modules, multilevel insulated-gate bipolar transistor (IGBT inverters, and utility grids.

  3. Can Preoperative Intramuscular Single-Dose Dexamethasone Improve Patient-Centered Outcomes Following Third Molar Surgery? (United States)

    Al-Dajani, Mahmoud


    Because of increased attention focused on administering dexamethasone to treat third molar surgical complications, this study investigated the efficacy of single-dose dexamethasone in managing postoperative complications after impacted third molar surgery. Pain intensity and analgesic intake, patients' discomfort, limitation of oral function, and limitation of daily activities were assessed. This triple-blinded split-mouth randomized controlled clinical trial included patients 18 to 30 years old who underwent randomized bilateral extractions of impacted mandibular third molars during 2 consecutive sessions. Each patient was given a single-dose intramuscular injection of dexamethasone (0.1 mg/kg) preoperatively in 1 session and a placebo in the other session. Data were collected daily for 7 postoperative days, and 14 patient-centered outcomes were interpreted. A 2-tailed P value less than .05 was considered significant. All 32 patients (100%) enrolled completed the study. When administered dexamethasone, patients reported less pain (P ≤ .007), took fewer analgesics (P ≤ .002), reported less swelling (P ≤ .007), had less difficulty in eating (P ≤ .024), had less difficulty in enjoying food (P ≤ .005), had less difficulty in speech (P = .043), had less trismus (P = .005), were absent less from school or work (P ≤ .016), and had less disruption of daily activity (P ≤ .042). The differences between the 2 conditions in bleeding, malaise, and sleep disturbance were not significant (P > .05). Prophylactic dexamethasone administered intramuscularly before third molar surgery should be recommended as a safe and effective strategy for decreasing pain and discomfort and enhancing oral functions and daily activities, unless contraindicated. Copyright © 2017 American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. An improved filtering algorithm for big read datasets and its application to single-cell assembly. (United States)

    Wedemeyer, Axel; Kliemann, Lasse; Srivastav, Anand; Schielke, Christian; Reusch, Thorsten B; Rosenstiel, Philip


    For single-cell or metagenomic sequencing projects, it is necessary to sequence with a very high mean coverage in order to make sure that all parts of the sample DNA get covered by the reads produced. This leads to huge datasets with lots of redundant data. A filtering of this data prior to assembly is advisable. Brown et al. (2012) presented the algorithm Diginorm for this purpose, which filters reads based on the abundance of their k-mers. We present Bignorm, a faster and quality-conscious read filtering algorithm. An important new algorithmic feature is the use of phred quality scores together with a detailed analysis of the k-mer counts to decide which reads to keep. We qualify and recommend parameters for our new read filtering algorithm. Guided by these parameters, we remove in terms of median 97.15% of the reads while keeping the mean phred score of the filtered dataset high. Using the SDAdes assembler, we produce assemblies of high quality from these filtered datasets in a fraction of the time needed for an assembly from the datasets filtered with Diginorm. We conclude that read filtering is a practical and efficient method for reducing read data and for speeding up the assembly process. This applies not only for single cell assembly, as shown in this paper, but also to other projects with high mean coverage datasets like metagenomic sequencing projects. Our Bignorm algorithm allows assemblies of competitive quality in comparison to Diginorm, while being much faster. Bignorm is available for download at .

  5. Adjusting output impedance using a PI controller to improve the stability of a single-phase inverter under weak grid

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiao Jiao


    Full Text Available Explored in this paper is the grid impedance effect on the stability of a single-phase grid connected inverter with an LC filter based on an analysis of the inverter output impedance. For a single-phase grid connected inverter, a PI controller is often used to regulate the current injected into the grid. However, the control performance can be influenced when the inverter is connected to a weak grid. Also, the utility grid has background harmonic noise, which can make the injected current distorted. Therefore, analysis of the output impedance of a single-phase grid connected inverter is important for the robustness and stability of the system. By modeling the output impedance of inverter, it can be determined that the proportional gain and integral gain of the controller have an effect on the output impedance. Analytical results show that by adjusting the PI controller parameters, the ability for harmonic reduction and stability of the system can be improved. Simulation and experiments using a 1 kW single-phase grid connected inverter verify the effectiveness of the theoretical analysis.

  6. Improving situation awareness of a single human operator interacting with multiple unmanned vehicles: first results


    Aubert, Thomas; Corjon, Julien; Gautreault, Fabien; Laurent, Mickaël; Causse, Mickael; Dehais, Frédéric


    In the context of the supervision of one or several unmanned vehicles by a human operator, the design of an adapted user interface is a major challenge. Therefore, in the context of an existing experimental set up composed of a ground station and heterogeneous unmanned ground and air vehicles we aim at redesigning the human-robot interactions to improve the operator's situation awareness. We base our new design on a classical user centered approach.

  7. Improved estimation of receptor density and binding rate constants using a single tracer injection and displacement

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Syrota, A.; Delforge, J.; Mazoyer, B.M.


    The possibility of improving receptor model parameter estimation using a displacement experiment in which an excess of an unlabeled ligand (J) is injected after a delay (t D ) following injection of trace amounts of the β + - labeled ligand (J*) is investigated. The effects of varying t D and J/J* on parameter uncertainties are studied in the case of 11 C-MQNB binding to myocardial acetycholine receptor using parameters identified in a dog experiment

  8. Per Object statistical analysis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)


    This RS code is to do Object-by-Object analysis of each Object's sub-objects, e.g. statistical analysis of an object's individual image data pixels. Statistics, such as percentiles (so-called "quartiles") are derived by the process, but the return of that can only be a Scene Variable, not an Object...... an analysis of the values of the object's pixels in MS-Excel. The shell of the proceedure could also be used for purposes other than just the derivation of Object - Sub-object statistics, e.g. rule-based assigment processes....... Variable. This procedure was developed in order to be able to export objects as ESRI shape data with the 90-percentile of the Hue of each object's pixels as an item in the shape attribute table. This procedure uses a sub-level single pixel chessboard segmentation, loops for each of the objects...

  9. An Improved Azimuth Angle Estimation Method with a Single Acoustic Vector Sensor Based on an Active Sonar Detection System (United States)

    Zhao, Anbang; Ma, Lin; Ma, Xuefei; Hui, Juan


    In this paper, an improved azimuth angle estimation method with a single acoustic vector sensor (AVS) is proposed based on matched filtering theory. The proposed method is mainly applied in an active sonar detection system. According to the conventional passive method based on complex acoustic intensity measurement, the mathematical and physical model of this proposed method is described in detail. The computer simulation and lake experiments results indicate that this method can realize the azimuth angle estimation with high precision by using only a single AVS. Compared with the conventional method, the proposed method achieves better estimation performance. Moreover, the proposed method does not require complex operations in frequency-domain and achieves computational complexity reduction. PMID:28230763

  10. An Improved Azimuth Angle Estimation Method with a Single Acoustic Vector Sensor Based on an Active Sonar Detection System. (United States)

    Zhao, Anbang; Ma, Lin; Ma, Xuefei; Hui, Juan


    In this paper, an improved azimuth angle estimation method with a single acoustic vector sensor (AVS) is proposed based on matched filtering theory. The proposed method is mainly applied in an active sonar detection system. According to the conventional passive method based on complex acoustic intensity measurement, the mathematical and physical model of this proposed method is described in detail. The computer simulation and lake experiments results indicate that this method can realize the azimuth angle estimation with high precision by using only a single AVS. Compared with the conventional method, the proposed method achieves better estimation performance. Moreover, the proposed method does not require complex operations in frequencydomain and achieves computational complexity reduction.

  11. Improvements in staff quality of work life and family satisfaction following the move to single-family room NICU design. (United States)

    Watson, Jo; DeLand, Marion; Gibbins, Sharyn; MacMillan York, Elizabeth; Robson, Kate


    The purpose of this study was to determine whether there were differences in staff quality of work life and parent satisfaction when a neonatal intensive care unit moved from an open-bay design to a single-room model of care. This descriptive study measured staff quality of work life and family satisfaction before and at 2 time periods after the relocation of a perinatal centre and the introduction of single-family room care. Differences in work life quality and satisfaction were determined using 2-sample t-tests. There were improvements in staff quality of work life and family satisfaction at both time periods following the move. Lessons learned may be of value to other units considering such a move. A neonatal intensive care unit designed to contribute to parental and staff well-being is a model to be considered for future neonatal designs.

  12. Improving accuracy of overhanging structures for selective laser melting through reliability characterization of single track formation on thick powder beds

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mohanty, Sankhya; Hattel, Jesper Henri


    Repeatability and reproducibility of parts produced by selective laser melting is a standing issue, and coupled with a lack of standardized quality control presents a major hindrance towards maturing of selective laser melting as an industrial scale process. Consequently, numerical process...... modelling has been adopted towards improving the predictability of the outputs from the selective laser melting process. Establishing the reliability of the process, however, is still a challenge, especially in components having overhanging structures.In this paper, a systematic approach towards...... establishing reliability of overhanging structure production by selective laser melting has been adopted. A calibrated, fast, multiscale thermal model is used to simulate the single track formation on a thick powder bed. Single tracks are manufactured on a thick powder bed using same processing parameters...

  13. An Improved Single-Channel Method to Retrieve Land Surface Temperature from the Landsat-8 Thermal Band

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jordi Cristóbal


    Full Text Available Land surface temperature (LST is one of the sources of input data for modeling land surface processes. The Landsat satellite series is the only operational mission with more than 30 years of archived thermal infrared imagery from which we can retrieve LST. Unfortunately, stray light artifacts were observed in Landsat-8 TIRS data, mostly affecting Band 11, currently making the split-window technique impractical for retrieving surface temperature without requiring atmospheric data. In this study, a single-channel methodology to retrieve surface temperature from Landsat TM and ETM+ was improved to retrieve LST from Landsat-8 TIRS Band 10 using near-surface air temperature (Ta and integrated atmospheric column water vapor (w as input data. This improved methodology was parameterized and successfully evaluated with simulated data from a global and robust radiosonde database and validated with in situ data from four flux tower sites under different types of vegetation and snow cover in 44 Landsat-8 scenes. Evaluation results using simulated data showed that the inclusion of Ta together with w within a single-channel scheme improves LST retrieval, yielding lower errors and less bias than models based only on w. The new proposed LST retrieval model, developed with both w and Ta, yielded overall errors on the order of 1 K and a bias of −0.5 K validated against in situ data, providing a better performance than other models parameterized using w and Ta or only w models that yielded higher error and bias.

  14. Productivity Improvement for the SHX--SEN's Single-Wafer High-Current Ion Implanter

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ninomiya, Shiro; Ochi, Akihiro; Kimura, Yasuhiko; Yumiyama, Toshio; Kudo, Tetsuya; Kurose, Takeshi; Kariya, Hiroyuki; Tsukihara, Mitsukuni; Ishikawa, Koji; Ueno, Kazuyoshi


    Equipment productivity is a critical issue for device fabrication. For ion implantation, productivity is determined both by ion current at the wafer and by utilization efficiency of the ion beam. Such improvements not only result in higher fabrication efficiency but also reduce consumption of both electrical power and process gases. For high-current ion implanters, reduction of implant area is a key factor to increase efficiency. SEN has developed the SAVING system (Scanning Area Variation Implantation with Narrower Geometrical pattern) to address this opportunity. In this paper, three variations of the SAVING system are introduced along with discussion of their effects on fab productivity.

  15. Single leg jumping neuromuscular control is improved following whole body, long-axis rotational training. (United States)

    Nyland, John; Burden, Robert; Krupp, Ryan; Caborn, David N M


    Improved lower extremity neuromuscular control during sports may decrease injury risk. This prospective study evaluated progressive resistance, whole body, long-axis rotational training on the Ground Force 360 device. Our hypothesis was that device training would improve lower extremity neuromuscular control based on previous reports of kinematic, ground reaction force (GRF) or electromyographic (EMG) evidence of safer or more efficient dynamic knee stability during jumping. Thirty-six healthy subjects were randomly assigned to either training (Group 1) or control (Group 2) groups. Using a pre-test, post-test study design data were collected from three SLVJ trials. Unpaired t-tests with adjustments for multiple comparisons were used to evaluate group mean change differences (P≤0.05/25≤0.002). During propulsion Group 1 standardized EMG amplitude mean change differences for gluteus maximus (-21.8% vs. +17.4%), gluteus medius (-28.6% vs. +15.0%), rectus femoris (-27.1% vs. +11.2%), vastus medialis (-20.2% vs. +9.1%), and medial hamstrings (-38.3% vs. +30.3%) differed from Group 2. During landing Group 1 standardized EMG amplitude mean change differences for gluteus maximus (-32.9% vs. +11.1%) and rectus femoris (-33.3% vs. +29.0%) also differed from Group 2. Group 1 peak propulsion vertical GRF (+0.24N/kg vs. -0.46N/kg) and landing GRF stabilization timing (-0.68 vs. +0.05s) mean change differences differed from Group 2. Group 1 mean hip (-16.3 vs. +7.8°/s) and knee (-21.4 vs. +18.5°/s) flexion velocity mean change differences also differed from Group 2. Improved lower extremity neuromuscular efficiency, increased peak propulsive vertical GRF, decreased mean hip and knee flexion velocities during landing, and earlier landing stabilization timing in the training group suggests improved lower extremity neuromuscular control. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Improved Reliability of Single-Phase PV Inverters by Limiting the Maximum Feed-in Power

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yang, Yongheng; Wang, Huai; Blaabjerg, Frede


    . The CPG control strategy is activated only when the DC input power from PV panels exceeds a specific power limit. It enables to limit the maximum feed-in power to the electric grids and also to improve the utilization of PV inverters. As a further study, this paper investigates the reliability performance...... of the power devices (e.g. IGBTs) used in PV inverters with the CPG control under different feed-in power limits. A long-term mission profile (i.e. solar irradiance and ambient temperature) based stress analysis approach is extended and applied to obtain the yearly electrical and thermal stresses of the power...

  17. Toward an Improved Single-Particle Model for Large Irregular Grains (United States)

    Grundy, W. M.; Schmitt, B.; Doute, S.


    To interpret remote spectral observations, scattering and absorption in a particulate surface are simulated via radiative transfer models. The standard model for this purpose among the planetary science community is the Hapke model. This model (like many others) uses two parameters to characterize the optical behavior of individual grains in a particulate surface, the single-scattering albedo omega and phase function p(g). These terms describe, respectively, the quantity and the angular distribution of light scattered by an individual grain. Unfortunately, these parameters are strictly optical. They can be rather difficult to interpret in terms of more interesting particle properties such as grain sizes, shapes, and compositions, that a remote sensing experiment might seek to discover. An equivalent slab approximation is typically used to relate omega to the grain size and optical constants of the material. This approach can mimic the wavelength-dependent absorption behavior of irregular grains, as long as the imaginary index kappa is much less than 1, the shape is equant, and the grain size D is much larger than the wavelength lambda. Unfortunately, the equivalent slab approach provides no information about p(g), which also has a strong dependence on optical constants and particle form.

  18. Wavelet methodology to improve single unit isolation in primary motor cortex cells. (United States)

    Ortiz-Rosario, Alexis; Adeli, Hojjat; Buford, John A


    The proper isolation of action potentials recorded extracellularly from neural tissue is an active area of research in the fields of neuroscience and biomedical signal processing. This paper presents an isolation methodology for neural recordings using the wavelet transform (WT), a statistical thresholding scheme, and the principal component analysis (PCA) algorithm. The effectiveness of five different mother wavelets was investigated: biorthogonal, Daubachies, discrete Meyer, symmetric, and Coifman; along with three different wavelet coefficient thresholding schemes: fixed form threshold, Stein's unbiased estimate of risk, and minimax; and two different thresholding rules: soft and hard thresholding. The signal quality was evaluated using three different statistical measures: mean-squared error, root-mean squared, and signal to noise ratio. The clustering quality was evaluated using two different statistical measures: isolation distance, and L-ratio. This research shows that the selection of the mother wavelet has a strong influence on the clustering and isolation of single unit neural activity, with the Daubachies 4 wavelet and minimax thresholding scheme performing the best. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  19. Quality improvement of CdZnTe single crystal by ultrasound processing (United States)

    Lisiansky, M.; Berner, A.; Korchnoy, V.


    Intrinsic defects and contaminations removal from the undoped p-type Cd0.96Zn0.04Te single crystals has been achieved by the ultrasound vibration processing at the room temperature. Surface analysis based on Auger Electron Spectroscopy, Energy Dispersive Spectroscopy, and Scanning Electron Spectroscopy shows a significant reconstruction of the crystal surface after processing, namely, the appearance of numerous "volcano craters" and triangle-shaped defects with a typical size of 0.2-5.0 μm. Elemental analysis of these defects shows that they are Te inclusions emerged on the surface. The regular crystal surface outside the defects also displays a considerable enrichment by Te. Distinct presence of copper is found in both the thin surface layer and in the defects emerged on the surface. The surface reconstruction is associated with a remarkable change in the bulk material properties, electrical (an increase in the resistivity by a factor of ∼6) and optical (an IR transmittance increase). A post-polishing following the ultrasound processing makes the CdZnTe material more stable and reliable for a wide range of device applications.

  20. Training With Curved Laparoscopic Instruments in Single-Port Setting Improves Performance Using Straight Instruments: A Prospective Randomized Simulation Study. (United States)

    Lukovich, Peter; Sionov, Valery Ben; Kakucs, Timea


    Lately single-port surgery is becoming a widespread procedure, but it is more difficult than conventional laparoscopy owing to the lack of triangulation. Although, these operations are also possible with standard laparoscopic instruments, curved instruments are being developed. The aims of the study were to identify the effect of training on a box trainer in single-port setting on the quality of acquired skills, and transferred with the straight and curved instruments for the basic laparoscopic tasks, and highlight the importance of a special laparoscopic training curriculum. A prospective study on a box trainer in single-port setting was conducted using 2 groups. Each group performed 2 tasks on the box trainer in single-port setting. Group-S used conventional straight laparoscopic instruments, and Group-C used curved laparoscopic instruments. Learning curves were obtained by daily measurements recorded in 7-day sessions. On the last day, the 2 groups changed instruments between each other. 1st Department of Surgery, Semmelweis University of Medicine from Budapest, Hungary, a university teaching hospital. In all, 20 fifth-year medical students were randomized into 2 groups. None of them had any laparoscopic or endoscopic experience. Participation was voluntary. Although Group-S performed all tasks significantly faster than Group-C on the first day, the difference proved to be nonsignificant on the last day. All participants achieved significantly shorter task completion time on the last day than on the first day, regardless of the instrument they used. Group-S showed improvement of 63.5%, and Group-C 69.0% improvement by the end of the session. After swapping the instruments, Group-S reached significantly higher task completion time with curved instruments, whereas Group-C showed further progression of 8.9% with straight instruments. Training with curved instruments in a single-port setting allows for a better acquisition of skills in a shorter period. For this

  1. Tracking Success: Outputs Versus Outcomes-A Comparison of Accredited and Non-Accredited Public Health Agencies' Community Health Improvement Plan objectives. (United States)

    Perrault, Evan K; Inderstrodt-Stephens, Jill; Hintz, Elizabeth A


    With funding for public health initiatives declining, creating measurable objectives that are focused on tracking and changing population outcomes (i.e., knowledge, attitudes, or behaviors), instead of those that are focused on health agencies' own outputs (e.g., promoting services, developing communication messages) have seen a renewed focus. This study analyzed 4094 objectives from the Community Health Improvement Plans (CHIPs) of 280 local PHAB-accredited and non-accredited public health agencies across the United States. Results revealed that accredited agencies were no more successful at creating outcomes-focused objectives (35% of those coded) compared to non-accredited agencies (33% of those coded; Z = 1.35, p = .18). The majority of objectives were focused on outputs (accredited: 61.2%; non-accredited: 63.3%; Z = 0.72, p = .47). Outcomes-focused objectives primarily sought to change behaviors (accredited: 85.43%; non-accredited: 80.6%), followed by changes in knowledge (accredited: 9.75%; non-accredited: 10.8%) and attitudes (accredited: 1.6%; non-accredited: 5.1%). Non-accredited agencies had more double-barreled objectives (49.9%) compared to accredited agencies (32%; Z = 11.43, p < .001). The authors recommend that accreditation procedures place a renewed focus on ensuring that public health agencies strive to achieve outcomes. It is also advocated that public health agencies work with interdisciplinary teams of Health Communicators who can help them develop procedures to effectively and efficiently measure outcomes of knowledge and attitudes that are influential drivers of behavioral changes.

  2. Correlation of Dual Colour Single Particle Trajectories for Improved Detection and Analysis of Interactions in Living Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kevin Braeckmans


    Full Text Available Interactions between objects inside living cells are often investigated by looking for colocalization between fluorescence microscopy images that are recorded in separate colours corresponding to the fluorescent label of each object. The fundamental limitation of this approach in the case of dynamic objects is that coincidental colocalization cannot be distinguished from true interaction. Instead, correlation between motion trajectories obtained by dual colour single particle tracking provides a much stronger indication of interaction. However, frequently occurring phenomena in living cells, such as immobile phases or transient interactions, can limit the correlation to small parts of the trajectories. The method presented here, developed for the detection of interaction, is based on the correlation inside a window that is scanned along the trajectories, covering different subsets of the positions. This scanning window method was validated by simulations and, as an experimental proof of concept, it was applied to the investigation of the intracellular trafficking of polymeric gene complexes by endosomes in living retinal pigment epithelium cells, which is of interest to ocular gene therapy.

  3. Improved method for Mica functionalization used in single molecule imaging of DNA with atomic force microscopy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hana Zapletalová


    Full Text Available The modified procedure of 1-(3-aminopropylsilatrane (APS compound synthesis based on a new derivative (3‑aminopropyltrimethoxysilane for the purpose of DNA immobilization for AFM single imaging is described. New reaction pathway based on kinetically driven reaction approach is described. Necessity of two‑step purification process is proved; ability of purified APS to provide four times smoother surfaces in comparison with a crude product is demonstrated. Various analytical methods such mass spectroscopy and 1H NMR were used to show structure and enhanced purity of the APS product. APS mediates fixation of DNA molecules to mica substrates to be used for DNA imaging under Atomic Force Microscope. The use of an APS compound for simple and rapid silanization of mica surface is demonstrated. The advantages of APS‑based method are based mainly on low roughness of modified mica and homogeneous surface coverage by short sequence dsDNA (246 bp. The product obtained by the condensation reaction was purified in a two step process whose effectiveness was demonstrated not only by reduction of the silanized surface roughness, but also by mass spectroscopy (MS‑ESi, MALDI‑TOF method and proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy. Experiments demonstrate that 1‑(3‑aminopropylsilatrane can be used to fix dsDNA molecules to a mica surface to be visualized by either the tapping mode or the force‑volume mode of AFM microscopy, as demonstrated by experiments. Moreover, necessity of advanced purification protocol is demonstrated by AFM based roughness measurements – pure vs crude APS product. The kinetics of APS‑layer aging, caused by silicon oxide growth on silanized layers, was studied by water contact angle measurements and is discussed.

  4. Single Case Method in Psychology: How to Improve as a Possible Methodology in Quantitative Research. (United States)

    Krause-Kjær, Elisa; Nedergaard, Jensine I


    Awareness of including Single-Case Method (SCM), as a possible methodology in quantitative research in the field of psychology, has been argued as useful, e.g., by Hurtado-Parrado and López-López (IPBS: Integrative Psychological & Behavioral Science, 49:2, 2015). Their article introduces a historical and conceptual analysis of SCMs and proposes changing the, often prevailing, tendency of neglecting SCM as an alternative to Null Hypothesis Significance Testing (NHST). This article contributes by putting a new light on SCM as an equally important methodology in psychology. The intention of the present article is to elaborate this point of view further by discussing one of the most fundamental requirements as well as main characteristics of SCM regarding temporality. In this respect that; "…performance is assessed continuously over time and under different conditions…" Hurtado-Parrado and López-López (IPBS: Integrative Psychological & Behavioral Science, 49:2, 2015). Defining principles when it comes to particular units of analysis, both synchronic (spatial) and diachronic (temporal) elements should be incorporated. In this article misunderstandings of the SCM will be adduced, and further the temporality will be described in order to propose how the SCM could have a more severe usability in psychological research. It is further discussed how to implement SCM in psychological methodology. It is suggested that one solution might be to reconsider the notion of time in psychological research to cover more than a variable of control and in this respect also include the notion of time as an irreversible unity within life.

  5. Research on multi-objective operation based on improved NSGA-Ⅱ for the cascade reservoirs in the Lower Yellow River (United States)

    Wang, X.; Chang, J.; Wang, Y.


    Research on the tradeoff relationship between water supply, electricity generation and ecological benefits has great significance for reservoir comprehensive utilization and watershed management. In this paper, an integrated operation model considering multiple goals is constructed based on the contradiction and unity between different objectives of reservoir operation, which is designed to explore the relationship of the water supply, power generation and ecological benefits. And an improved multi-objective evolutionary algorithm with Individual Constraints and Group Constraints is proposed to solve the model. The Xiaolangdi and Xixiayuan cascade reservoirs in the lower Yellow River are taken as a case study, the results show that the method can obtain a set of dispatching schemes which reflect the non-dominated relationships among the multi-objectives in a relatively short time. It is found that the asymmetric tradeoffs between the benefits of ecology, water supply and power generation really exists. Specifically with the increase of power generation, the guarantee rate of ecological and comprehensive water supply decreases. Furthermore, the power generation competes with ecological water shortage stronger than comprehensive water shortage. The study can provide technical support and reference value to multi-objective operation in the lower Yellow River in the future.

  6. Sixfold improved single particle measurement of the magnetic moment of the antiproton

    CERN Document Server

    Nagahama, H; Sellner, S; Harrington, J; Higuchi, T; Borchert, M J; Tanaka, T; Besirli, M; Mooser, A; Schneider, G; Blaum, K; Matsuda, Y; Ospelkaus, C; Quint, W; Walz, J; Yamazaki, Y; Ulmer, S


    Our current understanding of the Universe comes, among others, from particle physics and cosmology. In particle physics an almost perfect symmetry between matter and antimatter exists. On cosmological scales, however, a striking matter/antimatter imbalance is observed. This contradiction inspires comparisons of the fundamental properties of particles and antiparticles with high precision. Here we report on a measurement of the g-factor of the antiproton with a fractional precision of 0.8 parts per million at 95% confidence level. Our value /2=2.7928465(23) outperforms the previous best measurement by a factor of 6. The result is consistent with our proton g-factor measurement gp/2=2.792847350(9), and therefore agrees with the fundamental charge, parity, time (CPT) invariance of the Standard Model of particle physics. Additionally, our result improves coefficients of the standard model extension which discusses the sensitivity of experiments with respect to CPT violation by up to a factor of 20.

  7. Implementation of a mandatory checklist of protocols and objectives improves compliance with a wide range of evidence-based intensive care unit practices. (United States)

    Byrnes, Matthew C; Schuerer, Douglas J E; Schallom, Marilyn E; Sona, Carrie S; Mazuski, John E; Taylor, Beth E; McKenzie, Wendi; Thomas, James M; Emerson, Jeffrey S; Nemeth, Jennifer L; Bailey, Ruth A; Boyle, Walter A; Buchman, Timothy G; Coopersmith, Craig M


    To determine a) if a checklist covering a diverse group of intensive care unit protocols and objectives would improve clinician consideration of these domains and b) if improved consideration would change practice patterns. Pre- and post observational study. A 24-bed surgical/burn/trauma intensive care unit in a teaching hospital. A total of 1399 patients admitted between June 2006 and May 2007. The first component of the study evaluated whether mandating verbal review of a checklist covering 14 intensive care unit best practices altered verbal consideration of these domains. Evaluation was performed using real-time bedside audits on morning rounds. The second component evaluated whether the checklist altered implementation of these domains by changing practice patterns. Evaluation was performed by analyzing data from the Project IMPACT database after patients left the intensive care unit. Verbal consideration of evaluable domains improved from 90.9% (530/583) to 99.7% (669/671, p < .0001) after verbal review of the checklist was mandated. Bedside consideration improved on the use of deep venous thrombosis prophylaxis (p < .05), stress ulcer prophylaxis (p < .01), oral care for ventilated patients (p < 0.01), electrolyte repletion (p < .01), initiation of physical therapy (p < .05), and documentation of restraint orders (p < .0001). Mandatory verbal review of the checklist resulted in a greater than two-fold increase in transferring patients out of the intensive care unit on telemetry (16% vs. 35%, p < .0001) and initiation of physical therapy (28% vs. 42%, p < .0001) compared with baseline practice. A mandatory verbal review of a checklist covering a wide range of objectives and goals at each patient's bedside is an effective method to improve both consideration and implementation of intensive care unit best practices. A bedside checklist is a simple, cost-effective method to prevent errors of omission in basic domains of intensive care unit management that might

  8. Contribution to the evaluation and to the improvement of multi-objective optimization methods: application to the optimization of nuclear fuel reloading pattern

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Collette, Y.


    In this thesis, we study the general problem of the selection of a multi-objective optimization method, then we study the improvement so as to efficiently solve a problem. The pertinent selection of a method presume the existence of a methodology: we have built tools to perform evaluation of performances and we propose an original method dedicated to the classification of know optimization methods. Our step has been applied to the elaboration of new methods for solving a very difficult problem: the nuclear core reload pattern optimization. First, we looked for a non usual approach of performances measurement: we have 'measured' the behavior of a method. To reach this goal, we have introduced several metrics. We have proposed to evaluate the 'aesthetic' of a distribution of solutions by defining two new metrics: a 'spacing metric' and a metric that allow us to measure the size of the biggest hole in the distribution of solutions. Then, we studied the convergence of multi-objective optimization methods by using some metrics defined in scientific literature and by proposing some more metrics: the 'Pareto ratio' which computes a ratio of solution production. Lastly, we have defined new metrics intended to better apprehend the behavior of optimization methods: the 'speed metric', which allows to compute the speed profile and a 'distribution metric' which allows to compute statistical distribution of solutions along the Pareto frontier. Next, we have studied transformations of a multi-objective problem and defined news methods: the modified Tchebychev method, or the penalized weighted sum of objective functions. We have elaborated new techniques to choose the initial point. These techniques allow to produce new initial points closer and closer to the Pareto frontier and, thanks to the 'proximal optimality concept', allowing dramatic improvements in the convergence of a multi-objective optimization method. Lastly, we have defined new vectorial multi-objective optimization

  9. Effectiveness of different memory training programs on improving hyperphagic behaviors of residents with dementia: a longitudinal single-blind study. (United States)

    Kao, Chieh-Chun; Lin, Li-Chan; Wu, Shiao-Chi; Lin, Ker-Neng; Liu, Ching-Kuan


    Hyperphagia increases eating-associated risks for people with dementia and distress for caregivers. The purpose of this study was to compare the long-term effectiveness of spaced retrieval (SR) training and SR training combined with Montessori activities (SR + M) for improving hyperphagic behaviors of special care unit residents with dementia. The study enrolled patients with dementia suffering from hyperphagia resident in eight institutions and used a cluster-randomized single-blind design, with 46 participants in the SR group, 49 in the SR + M group, and 45 participants in the control group. For these three groups, trained research assistants collected baseline data on hyperphagic behavior, pica, changes in eating habits, short meal frequency, and distress to caregivers. The SR and SR + M groups underwent memory training over a 6-week training period (30 sessions), and a generalized estimating equation was used to compare data of all the three groups of subjects obtained immediately after the training period and at follow-ups 1 month, 3 months, and 6 months later. Results showed that the hyperphagic and pica behaviors of both the SR and SR + M groups were significantly improved (P<0.001) and that the effect lasted for 3 months after training. The improvement of fast eating was significantly superior in the SR + M group than in the SR group. The improvement in distress to caregivers in both intervention groups lasted only until the posttest. Improvement in changes in eating habits of the two groups was not significantly different from that of the control group. SR and SR + M training programs can improve hyperphagic behavior of patients with dementia. The SR + M training program is particularly beneficial for the improvement of rapid eating. Caregivers can choose a suitable memory training program according to the eating problems of their residents.

  10. FinFET memory cell improvements for higher immunity against single event upsets (United States)

    Sajit, Ahmed Sattar

    The 21st century is witnessing a tremendous demand for transistors. Life amenities have incorporated the transistor in every aspect of daily life, ranging from toys to rocket science. Day by day, scaling down the transistor is becoming an imperious necessity. However, it is not a straightforward process; instead, it faces overwhelming challenges. Due to these scaling changes, new technologies, such as FinFETs for example, have emerged as alternatives to the conventional bulk-CMOS technology. FinFET has more control over the channel, therefore, leakage current is reduced. FinFET could bridge the gap between silicon devices and non-silicon devices. The semiconductor industry is now incorporating FinFETs in systems and subsystems. For example, Intel has been using them in their newest processors, delivering potential saving powers and increased speeds to memory circuits. Memory sub-systems are considered a vital component in the digital era. In memory, few rows are read or written at a time, while the most rows are static; hence, reducing leakage current increases the performance. However, as a transistor shrinks, it becomes more vulnerable to the effects from radioactive particle strikes. If a particle hits a node in a memory cell, the content might flip; consequently, leading to corrupting stored data. Critical fields, such as medical and aerospace, where there are no second chances and cannot even afford to operate at 99.99% accuracy, has induced me to find a rigid circuit in a radiated working environment. This research focuses on a wide spectrum of memories such as 6T SRAM, 8T SRAM, and DICE memory cells using FinFET technology and finding the best platform in terms of Read and Write delay, susceptibility level of SNM, RSNM, leakage current, energy consumption, and Single Event Upsets (SEUs). This research has shown that the SEU tolerance that 6T and 8T FinFET SRAMs provide may not be acceptable in medical and aerospace applications where there is a very high

  11. Objective assessment and design improvement of a staring, sparse transducer array by the spatial crosstalk matrix for 3D photoacoustic tomography.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Philip Wong

    Full Text Available Accurate reconstruction of 3D photoacoustic (PA images requires detection of photoacoustic signals from many angles. Several groups have adopted staring ultrasound arrays, but assessment of array performance has been limited. We previously reported on a method to calibrate a 3D PA tomography (PAT staring array system and analyze system performance using singular value decomposition (SVD. The developed SVD metric, however, was impractical for large system matrices, which are typical of 3D PAT problems. The present study consisted of two main objectives. The first objective aimed to introduce the crosstalk matrix concept to the field of PAT for system design. Figures-of-merit utilized in this study were root mean square error, peak signal-to-noise ratio, mean absolute error, and a three dimensional structural similarity index, which were derived between the normalized spatial crosstalk matrix and the identity matrix. The applicability of this approach for 3D PAT was validated by observing the response of the figures-of-merit in relation to well-understood PAT sampling characteristics (i.e. spatial and temporal sampling rate. The second objective aimed to utilize the figures-of-merit to characterize and improve the performance of a near-spherical staring array design. Transducer arrangement, array radius, and array angular coverage were the design parameters examined. We observed that the performance of a 129-element staring transducer array for 3D PAT could be improved by selection of optimal values of the design parameters. The results suggested that this formulation could be used to objectively characterize 3D PAT system performance and would enable the development of efficient strategies for system design optimization.

  12. Whole body, long-axis rotational training improves lower extremity neuromuscular control during single leg lateral drop landing and stabilization. (United States)

    Nyland, John; Burden, Robert; Krupp, Ryan; Caborn, David N M


    Poor neuromuscular control during sports activities is associated with non-contact lower extremity injuries. This study evaluated the efficacy of progressive resistance, whole body, long-axis rotational training to improve lower extremity neuromuscular control during a single leg lateral drop landing and stabilization. Thirty-six healthy subjects were randomly assigned to either Training or Control groups. Electromyographic, ground reaction force, and kinematic data were collected from three pre-test, post-test trials. Independent sample t-tests with Bonferroni corrections for multiple comparisons were used to compare group mean change differences (P≤0.05/21≤0.0023). Training group gluteus maximus and gluteus medius neuromuscular efficiency improved 35.7% and 31.7%, respectively. Training group composite vertical-anteroposterior-mediolateral ground reaction force stabilization timing occurred 1.35s earlier. Training group knee flexion angle at landing increased by 3.5°. Training group time period between the initial two peak frontal plane knee displacements following landing increased by 0.17s. Training group peak hip and knee flexion velocity were 21.2°/s and 20.1°/s slower, respectively. Time period between the initial two peak frontal plane knee displacements following landing and peak hip flexion velocity mean change differences displayed a strong relationship in the Training group (r(2)=0.77, P=0.0001) suggesting improved dynamic frontal plane knee control as peak hip flexion velocity decreased. This study identified electromyographic, kinematic, and ground reaction force evidence that device training improved lower extremity neuromuscular control during single leg lateral drop landing and stabilization. Further studies with other populations are indicated. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Disinfection of the Radiologist Workstation and Radiologist Hand Hygiene: A Single Institution Practice Quality Improvement Project. (United States)

    Quon, Jeffrey S; Dilauro, Marc; Ryan, John G


    The purpose of this study was to evaluate the workstation disinfection rates and hand hygiene of radiologists and trainees at shared departmental workstations and assess the impact of education and reminder placards on daily habits. A 10-question survey was administered to all staff radiologists, fellows, and residents at our institution. The questions pertained to workstation disinfection, hand hygiene habits, and accessibility to disinfectant wipes and hand sanitizer stations. Subsequently, a short educational PowerPoint presentation was emailed to the department and small reminder placards were placed at each workstation. A follow-up survey was administered. Chi-square and Wilcoxon signed-rank tests were used to analyse the results. The percentage of participants who disinfect their workstations 1-2 times/week, 3-4 times/week or everyday increased from 53.4% (45 of 84 participants) to 74.3% (55 of 74 participants; P = .01), while the number who disinfect their workstation PowerPoint presentation improved the rate of radiologist workstation disinfection. Copyright © 2016 Canadian Association of Radiologists. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Survivin Improves Reprogramming Efficiency of Human Neural Progenitors by Single Molecule OCT4

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shixin Zhou


    Full Text Available Induced pluripotent stem (iPS cells have been generated from human somatic cells by ectopic expression of four Yamanaka factors. Here, we report that Survivin, an apoptosis inhibitor, can enhance iPS cells generation from human neural progenitor cells (NPCs together with one factor OCT4 (1F-OCT4-Survivin. Compared with 1F-OCT4, Survivin accelerates the process of reprogramming from human NPCs. The neurocyte-originated induced pluripotent stem (NiPS cells generated from 1F-OCT4-Survivin resemble human embryonic stem (hES cells in morphology, surface markers, global gene expression profiling, and epigenetic status. Survivin keeps high expression in both iPS and ES cells. During the process of NiPS cell to neural cell differentiation, the expression of Survivin is rapidly decreased in protein level. The mechanism of Survivin promotion of reprogramming efficiency from NPCs may be associated with stabilization of β-catenin in WNT signaling pathway. This hypothesis is supported by experiments of RT-PCR, chromatin immune-precipitation, and Western blot in human ES cells. Our results showed overexpression of Survivin could improve the efficiency of reprogramming from NPCs to iPS cells by one factor OCT4 through stabilization of the key molecule, β-catenin.

  15. Improving social cognition in people with schizophrenia with RC2S: two single-case studies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elodie ePEYROUX


    Full Text Available Difficulties in social interactions are a central characteristic of people with schizophrenia, and can be partly explained by impairments of social cognitive processes. New strategies of cognitive remediation have been recently developed to target these deficits. The RC2S therapy is an individualized and partly computerized program through which patients practice social interactions and develop social cognitive abilities with simulation techniques in a realistic environment. Here we present the results of two case studies involving two patients with schizophrenia presenting with specific profiles of impaired social cognition. Each patient completed three baseline sessions, 14 treatment sessions, and three follow up sessions at the end of the therapy – and for one patient, another three sessions nine months later. We used a multiple baseline design to assess specific components of social cognition according to the patients’ profiles. Functioning and symptomatology were also assessed at the end of the treatment and six months later. Results highlight significant improvements in the targeted social cognitive processes and positive changes in functioning in the long term. The RC2S program seems thus to be a new useful program for social cognitive remediation in schizophrenia.

  16. Improving Social Cognition in People with Schizophrenia with RC2S: Two Single-Case Studies (United States)

    Peyroux, Elodie; Franck, Nicolas


    Difficulties in social interactions are a central characteristic of people with schizophrenia, and can be partly explained by impairments of social cognitive processes. New strategies of cognitive remediation have been recently developed to target these deficits. The RC2S therapy is an individualized and partly computerized program through which patients practice social interactions and develop social cognitive abilities with simulation techniques in a realistic environment. Here, we present the results of two case-studies involving two patients with schizophrenia presenting with specific profiles of impaired social cognition. Each patient completed three baseline sessions, 14 treatment sessions, and 3 follow-up sessions at the end of the therapy – and for 1 patient, another 3 sessions 9 months later. We used a multiple baseline design to assess specific components of social cognition according to the patients’ profiles. Functioning and symptomatology were also assessed at the end of the treatment and 6 months later. Results highlight significant improvements in the targeted social cognitive processes and positive changes in functioning in the long term. The RC2S program seems, thus, to be a new useful program for social cognitive remediation in schizophrenia. PMID:27199776

  17. Enhancement of the transport availability of resort agglomeration’s tourist objects based on improvement of the urban passenger transport scheme

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander N. Volkov


    Full Text Available The current state of the urban passenger transportation and level of development of the city network of streets for transport supply of resort agglomeration’s tourist objects were analyzed. Transport supply was described as a key element of improvement of the tourist destination’s attractiveness. It was considered as a serious limitation that there is a gap between city network of streets’ structure and transportation needs of the tourist industry in Russian cities. Factors of the critical impact on urban road system’s utilization during tourist transportation were characterized and classified.

  18. Using sea surface temperatures to improve performance of single dynamical downscaling model in flood simulation under climate change (United States)

    Chao, Y.; Cheng, C. T.; Hsiao, Y. H.; Hsu, C. T.; Yeh, K. C.; Liu, P. L.


    There are 5.3 typhoons hit Taiwan per year on average in last decade. Typhoon Morakot in 2009, the most severe typhoon, causes huge damage in Taiwan, including 677 casualties and roughly NT 110 billion (3.3 billion USD) in economic loss. Some researches documented that typhoon frequency will decrease but increase in intensity in western North Pacific region. It is usually preferred to use high resolution dynamical model to get better projection of extreme events; because coarse resolution models cannot simulate intense extreme events. Under that consideration, dynamical downscaling climate data was chosen to describe typhoon satisfactorily, this research used the simulation data from AGCM of Meteorological Research Institute (MRI-AGCM). Considering dynamical downscaling methods consume massive computing power, and typhoon number is very limited in a single model simulation, using dynamical downscaling data could cause uncertainty in disaster risk assessment. In order to improve the problem, this research used four sea surfaces temperatures (SSTs) to increase the climate change scenarios under RCP 8.5. In this way, MRI-AGCMs project 191 extreme typhoons in Taiwan (when typhoon center touches 300 km sea area of Taiwan) in late 21th century. SOBEK, a two dimensions flood simulation model, was used to assess the flood risk under four SSTs climate change scenarios in Tainan, Taiwan. The results show the uncertainty of future flood risk assessment is significantly decreased in Tainan, Taiwan in late 21th century. Four SSTs could efficiently improve the problems of limited typhoon numbers in single model simulation.

  19. Improvement of brain single photon emission tomography (SPET) using transmission data acquisition in a four-head SPET scanner

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Murase, Kenya; Tanada, Shuji; Inoue, Takeshi; Sugawara, Yoshifumi; Hamamoto, Ken


    Attenuation coefficient maps (μ-maps) are a useful way to compensate for non-uniform attenuation when performing single photon emission tomography (SPET). A new method was developed to record single photon transmission data and a μ-map for the brain was produced using a four-head SPET scanner. Transmission data were acquired by a gamma camera of opposite to a flood radioactive source attached to one of four gamma cameras in the four-head SPET scanner. Attenuation correction was performed using the iterative expectation maximization algorithm and the μ-map. Phantom studies demonstrated that this method could reconstruct the distribution of radioactivity more accurately than conventional methods, even for a severely non-uniform μ-map, and could improve the quality of SPET images. Clinical application to technetium-99m hexamethyl-propylene amine oxime (HMPAO) brain SPET also demonstrated the usefulness of this method. Thus, this method appears to be promising for improvement in the image quality and quantitative accuracy of brain SPET. (orig.)

  20. Improved generation lifetime model for the electrical characterization of single- and double-gate SOI nMOSFETs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Galeti, M; Martino, J A; Simoen, E; Claeys, C


    This work proposes a refined technique for the extraction of the generation lifetime in single- and double-gate partially depleted SOI nMOSFETs. The model presented in this paper, based on the drain current switch-off transients, takes into account the influence of the laterally non-uniform channel doping, caused by the presence of the halo implanted region, and the amount of charge controlled by the drain and source junctions on the floating body effect when the channel length is reduced. The obtained results for single-gate (SG) devices are compared with two-dimensional numerical simulations and experimental data, extracted for devices fabricated in a 0.1 µm SOI CMOS technology, showing excellent agreement. The improved model to determine the generation lifetime in double-gate (DG) devices beyond the considerations previously presented also consider the influence of the silicon layer thickness on the drain current transient. The extracted data through the improved model for DG devices were compared with measurements and two-dimensional numerical simulations of the SG devices also presenting a good adjustment with the channel length reduction and the same tendency with the silicon layer thickness variation

  1. Improved Laser Manipulation for On-chip Fabricated Microstructures Based on Solution Replacement and Its Application in Single Cell Analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tao Yue


    Full Text Available In this paper, we present the fabrication and assembly of microstructures inside a microfluidic device based on a photocrosslinkable resin and optical tweezers. We also report a method of solution replacement inside the microfluidic channel in order to improve the manipulation performance and apply the assembled microstructures for single cell cultivation. By the illumination of patterned ultraviolet (UV through a microscope, microstructures of arbitrary shape were fabricated by the photocrosslinkable resin inside a microfluidic channel. Based on the microfluidic channel with both glass and polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS surfaces, immovable and movable microstructures were fabricated and manipulated. The microstructures were fabricated at the desired places and manipulated by the optical tweezers. A rotational microstructure including a microgear and a rotation axis was assembled and rotated in demonstrating this technique. The improved laser manipulation of microstructures was achieved based on the on-chip solution replacement method. The manipulation speed of the microstructures increased when the viscosity of the solvent decreased. The movement efficiency of the fabricated microstructures inside the lower viscosity solvent was evaluated and compared with those microstructures inside the former high viscosity solvent. A novel cell cage was fabricated and the cultivation of a single yeast cell (w303 was demonstrated in the cell cage, inside the microfluidic device.

  2. Colloid single-layer centrifugation improves post-thaw donkey (Equus asinus) sperm quality and is related to ejaculate freezability. (United States)

    Ortiz, I; Dorado, J; Acha, D; Gálvez, M J; Urbano, M; Hidalgo, M


    The aim of this study was to determine whether colloid single-layer centrifugation (SLC) improves post-thaw donkey sperm quality and if this potential enhancement is related to ejaculate freezability. Semen from Andalusian donkeys was frozen following a standard protocol. SLC was performed on frozen-thawed semen and post-thaw sperm parameters were compared with uncentrifuged samples. Sperm quality was estimated by integrating in a single value sperm motility (assessed by computer-assisted sperm analysis), morphology and viability (evaluated under brightfield or fluorescence microscopy). Sperm freezability was calculated as the relationship between sperm quality obtained before freezing and after thawing. Ejaculates were classified into low, medium and high freezability groups using the 25th and 75th percentiles as thresholds. All sperm parameters were significantly (P<0.01) higher in SLC-selected samples in comparison to uncentrifuged frozen-thawed semen and several kinematic parameters were even higher than those obtained in fresh semen. The increment of sperm parameters after SLC selection was correlated with ejaculate freezability, obtaining the highest values after SLC in semen samples with low freezability. We concluded that, based on the sperm-quality parameters evaluated, SLC can be a suitable procedure to improve post-thaw sperm quality of cryopreserved donkey semen, in particular for those ejaculates with low freezability.

  3. A fully three-dimensional reconstruction algorithm with the nonstationary filter for improved single-orbit cone beam SPECT

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cao, Z.J.; Tsui, B.M.


    Conventional single-orbit cone beam tomography presents special problems. They include incomplete sampling and inadequate three-dimensional (3D) reconstruction algorithm. The commonly used Feldkamp reconstruction algorithm simply extends the two-dimensional (2D) fan beam algorithm to 3D cone beam geometry. A truly 3D reconstruction formulation has been derived for the single-orbit cone beam SPECT based on the 3D Fourier slice theorem. In the formulation, a nonstationary filter which depends on the distance from the central plane of the cone beam was derived. The filter is applied to the 2D projection data in directions along and normal to the axis-of-rotation. The 3D reconstruction algorithm with the nonstationary filter was evaluated using both computer simulation and experimental measurements. Significant improvement in image quality was demonstrated in terms of decreased artifacts and distortions in cone beam reconstructed images. However, compared with the Feldkamp algorithm, a five-fold increase in processing time is required. Further improvement in image quality needs complete sampling in frequency space

  4. The Value of a Well-Being Improvement Strategy: Longitudinal Success across Subjective and Objective Measures Observed in a Firm Adopting a Consumer-Driven Health Plan. (United States)

    Guo, Xiaobo; Coberley, Carter; Pope, James E; Wells, Aaron


    The objective of this study is to evaluate effectiveness of a firm's 5-year strategy toward improving well-being while lowering health care costs amidst adoption of a Consumer-Driven Health Plan. Repeated measures statistical models were employed to test and quantify association between key demographic factors, employment type, year, individual well-being, and outcomes of health care costs, obesity, smoking, absence, and performance. Average individual well-being trended upward by 13.5% over 5 years, monthly allowed amount health care costs declined 5.2% on average per person per year, and obesity and smoking rates declined by 4.8 and 9.7%, respectively, on average each year. The results show that individual well-being was significantly associated with each outcome and in the expected direction. The firm's strategy was successful in driving statistically significant, longitudinal well-being, biometric and productivity improvements, and health care cost reduction.

  5. Improved elucidation of biological processes linked to diabetic nephropathy by single probe-based microarray data analysis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Clemens D Cohen

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Diabetic nephropathy (DN is a complex and chronic metabolic disease that evolves into a progressive fibrosing renal disorder. Effective transcriptomic profiling of slowly evolving disease processes such as DN can be problematic. The changes that occur are often subtle and can escape detection by conventional oligonucleotide DNA array analyses. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We examined microdissected human renal tissue with or without DN using Affymetrix oligonucleotide microarrays (HG-U133A by standard Robust Multi-array Analysis (RMA. Subsequent gene ontology analysis by Database for Annotation, Visualization and Integrated Discovery (DAVID showed limited detection of biological processes previously identified as central mechanisms in the development of DN (e.g. inflammation and angiogenesis. This apparent lack of sensitivity may be associated with the gene-oriented averaging of oligonucleotide probe signals, as this includes signals from cross-hybridizing probes and gene annotation that is based on out of date genomic data. We then examined the same CEL file data using a different methodology to determine how well it could correlate transcriptomic data with observed biology. ChipInspector (CI is based on single probe analysis and de novo gene annotation that bypasses probe set definitions. Both methods, RMA and CI, used at default settings yielded comparable numbers of differentially regulated genes. However, when verified by RT-PCR, the single probe based analysis demonstrated reduced background noise with enhanced sensitivity and fewer false positives. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Using a single probe based analysis approach with de novo gene annotation allowed an improved representation of the biological processes linked to the development and progression of DN. The improved analysis was exemplified by the detection of Wnt signaling pathway activation in DN, a process not previously reported to be involved in this disease.

  6. "Chopstick" surgery: a novel technique improves surgeon performance and eliminates arm collision in robotic single-incision laparoscopic surgery. (United States)

    Joseph, Rohan A; Goh, Alvin C; Cuevas, Sebastian P; Donovan, Michael A; Kauffman, Matthew G; Salas, Nilson A; Miles, Brian; Bass, Barbara L; Dunkin, Brian J


    Single-incision laparoscopic surgery (SILS) is limited by the coaxial arrangement of the instruments. A surgical robot with wristed instruments could overcome this limitation, but the arms often collide when working coaxially. This study tests a new technique of "chopstick" surgery to enable use of the robotic arms through a single incision without collision. Experiments were conducted utilizing the da Vinci S robot (Intuitive Surgical, Inc., Sunnyvale, CA) in a Fundamentals of Laparoscopic Surgery (FLS) box trainer with three laparoscopic ports (1 x 12 mm, 2 x 5 mm) introduced through a single "incision." Pilot work determined the optimal setup for SILS to be a triangular port arrangement with 2-cm trocar distance and remote center at the abdominal wall. Using this setup, five experienced robotic surgeons performed three FLS tasks utilizing either a standard robotic arm setup or the chopstick technique. The chopstick arrangement crosses the instruments at the abdominal wall so that the right instrument is on the left side of the target and the left instrument on the right. This results in separation of the robotic arms outside the box. To correct for the change in handedness, the robotic console is instructed to drive the "left" instrument with the right-hand effector and the "right" instrument with the left. Performances were compared while measuring time, errors, number of clutching maneuvers, and degree of instrument collision (Likert scale 1-4). Compared with the standard setup, the chopstick configuration increased surgeon dexterity and global performance through significantly improved performance times, eliminating instrument collision, and decreasing number of camera manipulations, clutching maneuvers, and errors during all tasks. Chopstick surgery significantly enhances the functionality of the surgical robot when working through a small single incision. This technique will enable surgeons to utilize the robot for SILS and possibly for intraluminal or

  7. Improving Continuing Professional Development opportunities for radiographers: A single centre evaluation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stevens, Barry J.; Wade, Demetri


    Purpose: This study aimed to identify current barriers to CPD and generate ideas for strategies to overcome these issues. Further aims were to gather an overview of respondents' understanding and opinions of CPD. Methods: An online survey was used to acquire information from departmental band 5 and band 6 radiographers. Descriptive statistical analysis and thematic analysis were performed to understand demographics and individuals' behaviours and experiences. Findings: Radiographers (n = 33) were sent an invitation via email providing a response rate of 75.8% (n = 25), with 20 females (80%) and 5 males (20%). 52% (n = 13) dedicate less than three hours a month. Participants highlighted time restraint as their biggest barrier to CPD. They also indicated a reluctance to use their own time to undertake work-related learning, despite exhibiting positive attitudes towards CPD. Radiographers see CPD as a vital and necessary, career-long learning process and they recognise the impacts on service provision. The notion of dedicated study time was unanimously suggested as the best approach to increase commitment to CPD. Conclusion: Radiographers demonstrated positive opinions of CPD, yet it was evident that many are not undertaking activities during their own time and it was acknowledged that opportunities during work time are limited. The provision of study time in work was suggested as an approach to improve radiographer's opportunities to complete CPD. Training sessions underlining the necessity of CPD in maintaining registration, what constitutes CPD and reinforcement of the benefits of systematic recording of CPD should be provided. - Highlights: • 80% believe they do not do enough CPD, 52% dedicate less than 3 h a month. • Radiographers are aware of the positive impact of learning on development. • Training should be given as a strategy to address radiographers' CPD inactivity. • The overarching theme relating to barriers to CPD is

  8. Safety of a DVT chemoprophylaxis protocol following traumatic brain injury: a single center quality improvement initiative. (United States)

    Nickele, Christopher M; Kamps, Timothy K; Medow, Joshua E


    Venous thromboembolism (VTE) is a complication that affects approximately 30 % of moderate and severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) patients when pharmacologic prophylaxis is not used. Following TBI, specifically in the case of contusions, the safety and efficacy of pharmacologic thromboembolism prophylaxis (PTP) has been studied only in small sample sizes. In this study, we attempt to assess the safety and efficacy of a PTP protocol for TBI patients, as a quality improvement (QI) initiative, in the neuroscience intensive care unit (NSICU). Between January 1st and December 31st, 2009, consecutive patients discharged from the University of Wisconsin NSICU after >a 48 h minimum stay were evaluated as part of a QI project. A protocol for the initiation of PTP was designed and implemented for NSICU patients. The protocol did not vary based on type of intracranial injury. The rate of VTE was reported as was heparin-induced thrombocytopenia and PTP-related expansion of intracranial hemorrhage (IH) requiring reoperation. The number of patients receiving PTP and the timing of therapy were tracked. Patients were excluded for persistent coagulopathy, other organ system bleeding (such as the gastrointestinal tract), or pregnancy. Faculty could opt out of the protocol without reason. Using the same criteria, patients discharged during the preceding 6 months, from July 1st to December 31st, 2008, were evaluated as controls as the PTP protocol was not in effect during this time. During the control period, there were 48 head trauma admissions who met the inclusion criteria. In 22 patients (45.8 %), PTP was initiated at an average of 4.9 ± 5.4 days after admission. During the protocol period, there were 87 head trauma admissions taken from 1,143 total NSICU stays who met criteria. In 63 patients (72.4 %), the care team in the NSICU successfully initiated PTP, at an average of 3.4 ± 2.8 days after admission. All 87 trauma patients were analyzed, and the rate of clinically

  9. Dense Plasma Focus: physics and applications (radiation material science, single-shot disclosure of hidden illegal objects, radiation biology and medicine, etc.) (United States)

    Gribkov, V. A.; Miklaszewski, R.; Paduch, M.; Zielinska, E.; Chernyshova, M.; Pisarczyk, T.; Pimenov, V. N.; Demina, E. V.; Niemela, J.; Crespo, M.-L.; Cicuttin, A.; Tomaszewski, K.; Sadowski, M. J.; Skladnik-Sadowska, E.; Pytel, K.; Zawadka, A.; Giannini, G.; Longo, F.; Talab, A.; Ul'yanenko, S. E.


    The paper presents some outcomes obtained during the year of 2013 of the activity in the frame of the International Atomic Energy Agency Co-ordinated research project "Investigations of Materials under High Repetition and Intense Fusion-Relevant Pulses". The main results are related to the effects created at the interaction of powerful pulses of different types of radiation (soft and hard X-rays, hot plasma and fast ion streams, neutrons, etc. generated in Dense Plasma Focus (DPF) facilities) with various materials including those that are counted as perspective ones for their use in future thermonuclear reactors. Besides we discuss phenomena observed at the irradiation of biological test objects. We examine possible applications of nanosecond powerful pulses of neutrons to the aims of nuclear medicine and for disclosure of hidden illegal objects. Special attention is devoted to discussions of a possibility to create extremely large and enormously diminutive DPF devices and probabilities of their use in energetics, medicine and modern electronics.

  10. Using the WHO Surgical Safety Checklist to Direct Perioperative Quality Improvement at a Surgical Hospital in Cambodia: The Importance of Objective Confirmation of Process Completion. (United States)

    Garland, Naomi Y; Kheng, Sokhavatey; De Leon, Michael; Eap, Hourt; Forrester, Jared A; Hay, Janice; Oum, Palritha; Sam Ath, Socheat; Stock, Simon; Yem, Samprathna; Lucas, Gerlinda; Weiser, Thomas G


    The WHO surgical safety checklist (SSC) is known to prevent postoperative complications; however, strategies for effective implementation are unclear. In addition to cultural and organizational barriers faced by high-income countries, resource-constrained settings face scarcity of durable and consumable goods. We used the SSC to better understand barriers to improvement at a trauma hospital in Battambang, Cambodia. We introduced the SSC and trained data collectors to observe surgical staff performing the checklist. Members of the research team observed cases and data collection. After 3 months, we modified the data collection tool to focus on infection prevention and elicit more accurate responses. Over 16 months we recorded data on 695 operations (304 cases using the first tool and 391 cases with the modified tool). The first tool identified five items as being in high compliance, which were then excluded from further assessment. Two items-instrument sterility confirmation and sponge counting-were identified as being misinterpreted by the data collectors' tool. These items were reworded to capture objective assessment of task completion. Confirmation of instrument sterility was initially never performed but rectified to >95% compliance; sponge counting and prophylactic antibiotic administration were consistently underperformed. Staff complied with communication elements of the SSC and quickly adopted process improvements. The wording of our data collection tool affected interpretation of compliance with standards. Material resources are not the primary barrier to checklist implementation in this setting, and future work should focus on clarification of protocols and objective confirmation of tasks.

  11. PDE5 inhibition improves object memory in standard housed rats but not in rats housed in an enriched environment: implications for memory models?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sven Akkerman

    Full Text Available Drug effects are usually evaluated in animals housed under maximally standardized conditions. However, it is assumed that an enriched environment (EE more closely resembles human conditions as compared to maximally standardized laboratory conditions. In the present study, we examined the acute cognition enhancing effects of vardenafil, a PDE5 inhibitor, which stimulates protein kinase G/CREB signaling in cells, in three different groups of male Wistar rats tested in an object recognition task (ORT. Rats were either housed solitarily (SOL or socially (SOC under standard conditions, or socially in an EE. Although EE animals remembered object information longer in the vehicle condition, vardenafil only improved object memory in SOL and SOC animals. While EE animals had a heavier dorsal hippocampus, we found no differences between experimental groups in total cell numbers in the dentate gyrus, CA2-3 or CA1. Neither were there any differences in markers for pre- and postsynaptic density. No changes in PDE5 mRNA- and protein expression levels were observed. Basal pCREB levels were increased in EE rats only, whereas β-catenin was not affected, suggesting specific activation of the MAP kinase signaling pathway and not the AKT pathway. A possible explanation for the inefficacy of vardenafil could be that CREB signaling is already optimally stimulated in the hippocampus of EE rats. Since previous data has shown that acute PDE5 inhibition does not improve memory performance in humans, the use of EE animals could be considered as a more valid model for testing cognition enhancing drugs.

  12. Improved focal liver lesion detection: comparison of single-shot diffusion-weighted echoplanar and single-shot T-2 weighted turbo spin echo techniques

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Coenegrachts, K.; Delanote, J.; ter Beek, L.; Haspeslagh, M.; Bipat, S.; Stoker, J.; van Kerkhove, F.; Steyaert, L.; Rigauts, H.; Casselman, J. W.


    The purpose of this study was to compare diffusion-weighted respiratory-triggered single-shot spin echo echoplanar imaging (SS SE-EPI) sequence using four b-values (b=0, b=20, b=300, b=800 s mm(-2)) and single-shot T-2 weighted turbo spin echo (T2W SS TSE) in patients with focal liver lesions, with

  13. Assessing and improving health in the workplace: an integration of subjective and objective measures with the STress Assessment and Research Toolkit (St.A.R.T.) method. (United States)

    Panari, Chiara; Guglielmi, Dina; Ricci, Aurora; Tabanelli, Maria Carla; Violante, Francesco Saverio


    The aim of this work was to introduce a new combined method of subjective and objective measures to assess psychosocial risk factors at work and improve workers' health and well-being. In the literature most of the research on work-related stress focuses on self-report measures and this work represents the first methodology capable of integrating different sources of data. An integrated method entitled St.A.R.T. (STress Assessment and Research Toolkit) was used in order to assess psychosocial risk factors and two health outcomes. In particular, a self-report questionnaire combined with an observational structured checklist was administered to 113 workers from an Italian retail company. The data showed a correlation between subjective data and the rating data of the observational checklist for the psychosocial risk factors related to work contexts such as customer relationship management and customer queue. Conversely, the factors related to work content (workload and boredom) measured with different methods (subjective vs. objective) showed a discrepancy. Furthermore, subjective measures of psychosocial risk factors were more predictive of workers' psychological health and exhaustion than rating data. The different objective measures played different roles, however, in terms of their influence on the two health outcomes considered. It is important to integrate self-related assessment of stressors with objective measures for a better understanding of workers' conditions in the workplace. The method presented could be considered a useful methodology for combining the two measures and differentiating the impact of different psychological risk factors related to work content and context on workers' health.

  14. Assessing and improving health in the workplace: an integration of subjective and objective measures with the STress Assessment and Research Toolkit (St.A.R.T. method

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Panari Chiara


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The aim of this work was to introduce a new combined method of subjective and objective measures to assess psychosocial risk factors at work and improve workers’ health and well-being. In the literature most of the research on work-related stress focuses on self-report measures and this work represents the first methodology capable of integrating different sources of data. Method An integrated method entitled St.A.R.T. (STress Assessment and Research Toolkit was used in order to assess psychosocial risk factors and two health outcomes. In particular, a self-report questionnaire combined with an observational structured checklist was administered to 113 workers from an Italian retail company. Results The data showed a correlation between subjective data and the rating data of the observational checklist for the psychosocial risk factors related to work contexts such as customer relationship management and customer queue. Conversely, the factors related to work content (workload and boredom measured with different methods (subjective vs. objective showed a discrepancy. Furthermore, subjective measures of psychosocial risk factors were more predictive of workers’ psychological health and exhaustion than rating data. The different objective measures played different roles, however, in terms of their influence on the two health outcomes considered. Conclusions It is important to integrate self-related assessment of stressors with objective measures for a better understanding of workers’ conditions in the workplace. The method presented could be considered a useful methodology for combining the two measures and differentiating the impact of different psychological risk factors related to work content and context on workers’ health.

  15. Brow ptosis: are we measuring the right thing? The impact of surgery and the correlation of objective and subjective measures with postoperative improvement in quality-of-life. (United States)

    Mellington, F; Khooshabeh, R


    To assess the effect of brow ptosis on visual function and quality-of-life (QoL), and to determine what measures are associated with post-surgical change in functional status. Prospective longitudinal study. Fifteen consecutive patients undergoing brow-lift surgery from February 2009 to August 2010. pre- and post-operative eyelid position (ie, distance mm from corneal reflex to upper skin fold (FRD1), lowest brow hair to lower limbus (LLB), centre of lower lid to upper lid skin fold (LLF)) and number of points missing in 'superior' and 'superior plus elsewhere' Humphrey 120-point visual field, as well as a Quality-of-life and Visual Function questionnaire before and after brow lift surgery. The strongest correlation between pre-op functional index score and any pre-op objective measure was visual fields (r=-0.46, P<0.085). There was a mean 36-point increase in functional index score after brow lift surgery (P<0.001).Self-reported preoperative functional impairment was the only outcome measure significantly (and strongly) associated with post-surgical improvement in functional status (r=-0.833, P<0.001). Surgical repair of brow ptosis results in a measurable increase in health-related QoL. The preoperative QoL score is the best predictor of postoperative improvement in QoL. The best available objective preoperative parameter for indicating postoperative QoL improvement is visual fields. These two measures should be used to better predict successful surgical outcomes.

  16. Cryptanalysis and Improvement for the Quantum Private Comparison Protocol Based on Triplet Entangled State and Single-Particle Measurement (United States)

    Ting, Xu; Tian-Yu, Ye


    Quantum private comparison (QPC) aims to accomplish the equality comparison of secret inputs from two users on the basis of not leaking their contents out. Recently, Chen et al. proposed the QPC protocol based on triplet GHZ state and single-particle measurement (Optics Communications 283, 1561-1565 (2010)). In this paper, they suggested the standard model of a semi-honest third party (TP) for the first time, and declared that their protocol is secure. Subsequently, Lin et al. pointed out that in Chen et al.'s protocol, one user can extract the other user's secret without being discovered by performing the intercept-resend attack, and suggested two corresponding improvements (Optics Communications 284, 2412-2414 (2011)). However, Yang et al. first pointed out that the model of TP adopted by both Chen et al.'s protocol and Lin et al.'s improved protocols is unreasonable, and thought that a practical TP may also try any possible means to steal the users' secrets except being corrupted by the adversary including the dishonest user (Quantum Inf Process 12, 877-885 (2013). In this paper, after taking the possible attacks from TP into account, we propose the eavesdropping strategy of TP toward Lin et al.'s improved protocols and suggest two feasible solutions accordingly.

  17. Improving single slope ADC and an example implemented in FPGA with 16.7 GHz equivalent counter clook frequency

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wu, Jinyuan; Odeghe, John; Stackley, Scott; Zha, Charles


    Single slope ADC is a common building block in many ASCI or FPGA based front-end systems due to its simplicity, small silicon footprint, low noise interference and low power consumption. In single slope ADC, using a Gray code counter is a popular scheme for time digitization, in which the comparator output drives the clock (CK) port of a register to latch the bits from the Gray code counter. Unfortunately, feeding the comparator output into the CK-port causes unnecessary complexities and artificial challenges. In this case, the propagation delays of all bits from the counter to the register inputs must be matched and the counter must be a Gray code one. A simple improvement on the circuit topology, i.e., feeding the comparator output into the D-port of a register, will avoid these unnecessary challenges, eliminating the requirement of the propagation delay match of the counter bits and allowing the use of regular binary counters. This scheme not only simplifies current designs for low speeds and resolutions, but also opens possibilities for applications requiring higher speeds and resolutions. A multi-channel single slope ADC based on a low-cost FPGA device has been implemented and tested. The timing measurement bin width in this work is 60 ps, which would need a 16.7 GHz counter clock had it implemented with the conventional Gray code counter scheme. A 12-bit performance is achieved using a fully differential circuit making comparison between the input and the ramping reference, both in differential format.

  18. Effectiveness of different memory training programs on improving hyperphagic behaviors of residents with dementia: a longitudinal single-blind study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kao CC


    Full Text Available Chieh-Chun Kao,1,2 Li-Chan Lin,3 Shiao-Chi Wu,4 Ker-Neng Lin,5,6 Ching-Kuan Liu7,8 1Department of Nursing, National Yang-Ming University, Taipei, 2Department of Nursing, Ching Kuo Institute of Management and Health, Keelung, 3Institute of Clinical Nursing, 4Institute of Health and Welfare Policy, National Yang-Ming University, 5Neurological Institute, Taipei Veterans General Hospital, Taipei, 6Department of Psychology, Soochow University, Taipei, Taiwan; 7Department of Neurology, Kaohsiung Medical University Hospital, 8Department of Neurology, Faculty of Medicine, College of Medicine, Kaohsiung Medical University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan Background: Hyperphagia increases eating-associated risks for people with dementia and distress for caregivers. The purpose of this study was to compare the long-term effectiveness of spaced retrieval (SR training and SR training combined with Montessori activities (SR + M for improving hyperphagic behaviors of special care unit residents with dementia. Methods: The study enrolled patients with dementia suffering from hyperphagia resident in eight institutions and used a cluster-randomized single-blind design, with 46 participants in the SR group, 49 in the SR + M group, and 45 participants in the control group. For these three groups, trained research assistants collected baseline data on hyperphagic behavior, pica, changes in eating habits, short meal frequency, and distress to caregivers. The SR and SR + M groups underwent memory training over a 6-week training period (30 sessions, and a generalized estimating equation was used to compare data of all the three groups of subjects obtained immediately after the training period and at follow-ups 1 month, 3 months, and 6 months later. Results: Results showed that the hyperphagic and pica behaviors of both the SR and SR + M groups were significantly improved (P<0.001 and that the effect lasted for 3 months after training. The improvement of fast eating was

  19. Improving Wind Predictions in the Marine Atmospheric Boundary Layer through Parameter Estimation in a Single-Column Model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lee, Jared A.; Hacker, Joshua P.; Delle Monache, Luca; Kosović, Branko; Clifton, Andrew; Vandenberghe, Francois; Rodrigo, Javier Sanz


    A current barrier to greater deployment of offshore wind turbines is the poor quality of numerical weather prediction model wind and turbulence forecasts over open ocean. The bulk of development for atmospheric boundary layer (ABL) parameterization schemes has focused on land, partly due to a scarcity of observations over ocean. The 100-m FINO1 tower in the North Sea is one of the few sources worldwide of atmospheric profile observations from the sea surface to turbine hub height. These observations are crucial to developing a better understanding and modeling of physical processes in the marine ABL. In this study, we use the WRF single column model (SCM), coupled with an ensemble Kalman filter from the Data Assimilation Research Testbed (DART), to create 100-member ensembles at the FINO1 location. The goal of this study is to determine the extent to which model parameter estimation can improve offshore wind forecasts.

  20. Improvement of dopant distribution in radial direction of single crystals grown by micro-pulling-down method (United States)

    Yokota, Yuui; Kudo, Tetsuo; Chani, Valery; Ohashi, Yuji; Kurosawa, Shunsuke; Kamada, Kei; Zeng, Zhong; Kawazoe, Yoshiyuki; Yoshikawa, Akira


    Two iridium crucibles with one and five capillaries at a nozzle were developed for the growth of Ce-doped Y3Al5O12 [Ce:YAG] single crystals by the micro-pulling-down [μ-PD] method. The purpose of the study was to examine the effect of the capillary number on the Ce distribution in the radial direction of the crystals. The crystals grown from 2 mol% and 5 mol% Ce-doped YAG melts were then cut perpendicular to the growth direction and polished to produce specimens suitable for the measurement of Ce distribution. The Ce:YAG crystals grown using the crucible with one capillary [Ce:YAG(1 C)] had greater Ce content in the central portion of the crystal when compared to its peripheral parts. On the other hand, in the case of the Ce:YAG crystal grown using the crucible with five capillaries [Ce:YAG(5 C)], the increased Ce concentration was detected in five specimen sections positioned just below the capillaries. The results indicated that increase of the number of capillaries is effective practice that results in an improvement of the radial homogeneity of the single crystals grown by the μ-PD method.

  1. Improvement of Barley yellow dwarf virus-PAV detection in single aphids using a fluorescent real time RT-PCR. (United States)

    Fabre, Frédéric; Kervarrec, Christine; Mieuzet, Lucie; Riault, Gérard; Vialatte, Aude; Jacquot, Emmanuel


    One of the major factors determining the incidence of Barley yellow dwarf virus (BYDV) on autumn-sown cereals is the viruliferous state of immigrant winged aphids. This variable is assessed routinely using the enzyme-linked immunosorbant assay (ELISA). However, the threshold for virus detection by ELISA can lead to false negative results for aphids carrying less than 10(6) particles. Although molecular detection techniques enabling the detection of lower virus quantities in samples are available, the relatively laborious sample preparation and data analysis have restricted their use in routine applications. A gel-free real-time one-step reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) protocol is described for specific detection and quantitation of BYDV-PAV, the most widespread BYDV species in Western Europe. This new assay, based on TaqMan technology, detects and quantifies from 10(2) to 10(8) BYDV-PAV RNA copies. This test is 10 and 10(3) times more sensitive than the standard RT-PCR and ELISA assays published previously for BYDV-PAV detection and significantly improves virus detection in single aphids. Extraction of nucleic acids from aphids using either phenol/chloroform or chelatin resin-based protocols allow the use of pooled samples or of a small part (up to 1/1600th) of a single aphid extract for efficient BYDV-PAV detection.

  2. Medipix3: A 64 k pixel detector readout chip working in single photon counting mode with improved spectrometric performance

    CERN Document Server

    Ballabriga, R; Wong, W; Heijne, E; Campbell, M; Llopart, X


    Medipix3 is a 256 x 256 channel hybrid pixel detector readout chip working in a single photon counting mode with a new inter-pixel architecture, which aims to improve the energy resolution in pixelated detectors by mitigating the effects of charge sharing between channels. Charges are summed in all 2 x 2 pixel clusters on the chip and a given hit is allocated locally to the pixel summing circuit with the biggest total charge on an event-by-event basis. Each pixel contains also two 12-bit binary counters with programmable depth and overflow control. The chip is configurable such that either the dimensions of each detector pixel match those of one readout pixel or detector pixels are four times greater in area than the readout pixels. In the latter case, event-by-event summing is still possible between the larger pixels. Each pixel has around 1600 transistors and the analog static power consumption is below 15 mu W in the charge summing mode and 9 mu W in the single pixel mode. The chip has been built in an 8-m...

  3. Distillate yield improvement using a parabolic dish reflector coupled single slope basin solar still with thermal energy storage using beeswax

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aondoyila KUHE


    Full Text Available A single slope solar still, integrated with latent heat thermal energy storage system coupled to a parabolic concentrator was designed with the aim of improving productivity. 14 kg of beeswax was used as phase change material (PCM between the absorber plate and the bottom of the still to keep the operating temperature of the still high enough to produce distilled water even during the sunset hours. The bottom of the still is covered by 0.2 m aluminum sheet painted black on the side facing the parabolic concentrator to help in absorbing solar radiation reflected from the parabolic concentrator and conducting same to the PCM. To determine the effect of PCM, a solar still without PCM was used to compare with the solar still with PCM. The temperature of water, air temperature, inner surface glass temperature and outer surface glass temperature were measured. Experimental results show that the effect of thermal storage in the parabolic concentrator-coupled single slope solar still increased the productivity by 62%.

  4. Improving the efficiency of single and multiple teleportation protocols based on the direct use of partially entangled states

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fortes, Raphael; Rigolin, Gustavo, E-mail:


    We push the limits of the direct use of partially pure entangled states to perform quantum teleportation by presenting several protocols in many different scenarios that achieve the optimal efficiency possible. We review and put in a single formalism the three major strategies known to date that allow one to use partially entangled states for direct quantum teleportation (no distillation strategies permitted) and compare their efficiencies in real world implementations. We show how one can improve the efficiency of many direct teleportation protocols by combining these techniques. We then develop new teleportation protocols employing multipartite partially entangled states. The three techniques are also used here in order to achieve the highest efficiency possible. Finally, we prove the upper bound for the optimal success rate for protocols based on partially entangled Bell states and show that some of the protocols here developed achieve such a bound. -- Highlights: •Optimal direct teleportation protocols using directly partially entangled states. •We put in a single formalism all strategies of direct teleportation. •We extend these techniques for multipartite partially entangle states. •We give upper bounds for the optimal efficiency of these protocols.

  5. Physicochemical improvement of rabbit derived single-domain antibodies by substitutions with amino acids conserved in camelid antibodies. (United States)

    Shinozaki, Naoya; Hashimoto, Ryuji; Noda, Masanori; Uchiyama, Susumu


    Recently, we showed that immunized rabbit heavy chain variable regions (rVHs) can have strong antigen binding activity comparable to that of the camelid variable domain of the heavy chain of heavy chain antibody (VHH). These rVHs lack the light chain variable regions (rVLs), which exist in the authentic Fab format; thus, molecular surfaces at the interface region of rVHs are exposed to solvent. This physical feature may change physicochemical properties, such as causing reduced stability. By overcoming potential physicochemical issues through engineering the interface region, rVHs could become more useful as single-domain antibodies. In this study, we substituted amino acid residues conserved at the interface region of rVHs with those of VHHs. These substitutions included V37F, involving substitution of a residue in the hydrophobic core with a bulkier hydrophobic amino acid, and G44E/L45R, involving double substitutions of highly exposed residues with more hydrophilic ones. As expected, biophysical and structural characterizations showed that the V37F substitution markedly enhanced the thermal stability through increased hydrophobic packing, while G44E/L45R substitutions greatly reduced hydrophobicity of the interface. The quadruple substitutions of V37F/G44E/L45R/F91Y resulted in not only enhancements of thermal stability and reduction in hydrophobicity, both in an additive manner, but also synergistic improvement of purification yield. This quadruple mutant exhibited greatly reduced non-specific binding with improved colloidal stability owing to the reduced hydrophobicity. The approach used in this study should further enhance the utility of rVHs and promote research and development of single-domain antibodies. Copyright © 2018 The Society for Biotechnology, Japan. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. A single dose of sodium nitrate does not improve oral glucose tolerance in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus. (United States)

    Cermak, Naomi M; Hansen, Dominique; Kouw, Imre W K; van Dijk, Jan-Willem; Blackwell, Jamie R; Jones, Andrew M; Gibala, Martin J; van Loon, Luc J C


    Dietary nitrate (NO3(-)) supplementation has been proposed as an emerging treatment strategy for type 2 diabetes. We hypothesized that ingestion of a single bolus of dietary NO3(-) ingestion improves oral glucose tolerance in patients with type 2 diabetes. Seventeen men with type 2 diabetes (glycated hemoglobin, 7.3% ± 0.2%) participated in a randomized crossover experiment. The subjects ingested a glucose beverage 2.5 hours after consumption of either sodium NO3(-) (0.15 mmol NaNO3(-) · kg(-1)) or a placebo solution. Venous blood samples were collected before ingestion of the glucose beverage and every 30 minutes thereafter during a 2-hour period to assess postprandial plasma glucose and insulin concentrations. The results show that plasma NO3(-) and nitrite levels were increased after NaNO3(-) as opposed to placebo ingestion (treatment-effect, P = .001). Despite the elevated plasma NO3(-) and nitrite levels, ingestion of NaNO3(-) did not attenuate the postprandial rise in plasma glucose and insulin concentrations (time × treatment interaction, P = .41 for glucose, P = .93 for insulin). Despite the lack of effect on oral glucose tolerance, basal plasma glucose concentrations measured 2.5 hours after NaNO3(-) ingestion were lower when compared with the placebo treatment (7.5 ± 0.4 vs 8.3 ± 0.4 mmol/L, respectively; P = .04). We conclude that ingestion of a single dose of dietary NO3(-) does not improve subsequent oral glucose tolerance in patients with type 2 diabetes. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Application of Multi-Objective Genetic Algorithm Based Simulation for Cost-Effective Building Energy Efficiency Design and Thermal Comfort Improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yaolin Lin


    Full Text Available Building design following the energy efficiency standards may not achieve the optimal performance in terms of investment cost, energy consumption and thermal comfort. In this paper, an improved multi-objective genetic algorithm (NSGA-II is combined with building simulation to assist building design optimization for five selected cities located in the hot summer and cold winter region in China. The trade-offs between the annual energy consumption (AEC and initial construction cost, as well as between life cycle cost (LCC and number of thermal discomfort hours, were explored. Sensitivity analysis of various design parameters on building energy consumption is performed. The optimizations predicted AEC reduction of 29.08% on average, as compared to a reference building designed following the standard, and 38.6% with 3.18% more cost on the initial investment. New values for a number of building design parameters are recommended for the revision of relevant building energy efficiency standard.

  8. Energy policy in the European Community: conflicts between the objectives of the unified single market, supply security and a clean environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Surrey, J.


    Policies for energy and the environment in Europe were previously the preserve of national governments, but the Commission of the European Community has gained a role in both policy areas in the past few years. This was due to the 1987 Single European Act which, in effect, extends the writ of competition law throughout the energy and other previously excluded sectors, expresses the desire to reduce acid rain and greenhouse gas emissions, and reaffirms Europe's renewed concern for long-term oil and gas supply security after the Gulf War and the disintegration of the USSR. The Commission's proposals for the unified internal energy market were driven by concern for competition and free market forces, and seemed to exclude any scope for long-term policy considerations. This paper argues that the implementation of those proposals will be uneven and protracted, and that the Commission's more recent proposals for reducing CO 2 emissions and the European Energy Charter appear to mark positive steps towards a long-term strategy for a clean environment, energy efficiency, and oil and gas supply security. 27 refs., 4 tabs

  9. A Six-Month Cognitive-Motor and Aerobic Exercise Program Improves Executive Function in Persons with an Objective Cognitive Impairment: A Pilot Investigation Using the Antisaccade Task. (United States)

    Heath, Matthew; Weiler, Jeffrey; Gregory, Michael A; Gill, Dawn P; Petrella, Robert J


    Persons with an objective cognitive impairment (OCI) are at increased risk for progression to Alzheimer's disease and related dementias. The present pilot project sought to examine whether participation in a long-term exercise program involving cognitive-motor (CM) dual-task gait training and aerobic exercise training improves executive function in persons with an OCI. To accomplish our objective, individuals with an OCI (n = 12) as determined by a Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) score of less than 26 and older adults (n = 11) deemed to be cognitively healthy (i.e., control group: MoCA score ≥26) completed a six-month moderate-to-high intensity (65-85% maximum heart rate) treadmill-based CM and aerobic exercise training program wherein pre- and post-intervention executive control was examined via the antisaccade task. Notably, antisaccades require a goal-directed eye-movement mirror-symmetrical to a target and represent an ideal tool for the study of executive deficits because of its hands- and language-free nature. As well, the cortical networks mediating antisaccades represent regions associated with neuropathology in cognitive decline and dementia (e.g., dorsolateral prefrontal cortex). Results showed that antisaccade reaction times for the OCI group reliably decreased by 30 ms from pre- to post-intervention, whereas the control group did not produce a reliable pre- to post-intervention change in reaction time (i.e., 6 ms). Thus, we propose that in persons with OCI long-term CM and aerobic training improves the efficiency and effectiveness of the executive mechanisms mediating high-level oculomotor control.

  10. Single versus Multiple Objective(s) Decision Making: An Application ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)


    production of each of these crops less consumption and sales should be greater or equal to 0. Subsistence requirement of cereals: The representative farm household is assumed to be of 5.0 (persons) adult equivalents. Following Gryseels (1988) and Kassie et al. (1999), 200 kilo grams of cereals is considered to be the.

  11. A single trial of transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) improves spasticity and balance in patients with chronic stroke. (United States)

    Cho, Hwi-young; In, Tae Sung; Cho, Ki Hun; Song, Chang Ho


    Spasticity management is pivotal for achieving functional recovery of stroke patients. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of a single trial of transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) on spasticity and balance in chronic stroke patients. Forty-two chronic stroke patients were randomly allocated into the TENS (n = 22) or the placebo-TENS (n = 20) group. TENS stimulation was applied to the gastrocnemius for 60 min at 100 Hz, 200 µs with 2 to 3 times the sensory threshold (the minimal threshold in detecting electrical stimulation for subjects) after received physical therapy for 30 min. In the placebo-TENS group, electrodes were placed but no electrical stimulation was administered. For measuring spasticity, the resistance encountered during passive muscle stretching of ankle joint was assessed using the Modified Ashworth Scale, and the Hand held dynamometer was used to assess the resistive force caused by spasticity. Balance ability was measured using a force platform that measures postural sway generated by postural imbalance. The TENS group showed a significantly greater reduction in spasticity of the gastrocnemius, compared to the placebo-TENS group (p TENS resulted in greater balance ability improvements, especially during the eyes closed condition (p TENS provides an immediately effective means of reducing spasticity and of improving balance in chronic stroke patients. The present data may be useful to establish the standard parameters for TENS application in the clinical setting of stroke.

  12. Performance Objectives (United States)


    mathematics program. Ir this study he measured mathenatics skills, mathematics application, ard student attitudes. Ne used the Stanford Achievement...34most vague" (5). Means and variances were computed for each Item on the questionnaire, Correlations were then ccinputed between and among the...between subjects’ ratings of objectives with direct objects and objectives containing "x" and "y." This is reflected in tests computed separately for

  13. Can an app supporting psoriasis patients improve adherence to topical treatment? A single-blind randomized controlled trial. (United States)

    Svendsen, Mathias Tiedemann; Andersen, Flemming; Andersen, Kirsten Hammond; Andersen, Klaus Ejner


    Topical corticosteroid or corticosteroid/calcipotriol preparations are recommended first-line topical treatments of psoriasis, but a main cause for the lack of efficacy of topical treatments is considered low rates of adherence to topical drugs. Patient support by the use of applications (apps) for smartphones is suggested to improve medical adherence. Design: An investigator-initiated, single-center, single-blind, parallel-group, phase-4 clinical superiority randomized controlled trial (RCT). 134 patients 18 to 75 years of age with mild-to-moderate psoriasis, who are capable of reading English language, own a smartphone, and are candidates for the study drug calcipotriol and betamethasone dipropionate (Cal/BD) cutaneous foam once daily prn (pro re nata). A 28-day adherence-supporting app providing compulsory daily treatment reminders that pop-up on the smartphone screen with a short alert sound. The app synchronizes through Bluetooth® to an electronic monitor (EM) attached to the medication canister. The EM contains a chip registering the amount of foam, day and time the patient use the foam dispenser. The information is displayed in a diary that shows the amount of Cal/BD cutaneous foam used and the number of applied treatment sessions. The app has an optional diary with the patient's rating of symptoms. Non-intervention: Use of Cal/BD cutaneous foam and EM without the app. All participants are prescribed Cal/BD cutaneous foam prn for the entire study period. Primary outcome obtained in week 4: rates of adherence measured by patient report, weight of medication canisters, and number of treatment sessions measured by the EM. Secondary outcomes obtained at baseline, weeks 4, 8, and 26: Lattice System Physician's Global Assessment (LS-PGA) and Dermatology Quality of Life Index (DLQI). This trial tests of whether an app can improve rates of adherence to a topical antipsoriatic drug. If the app improves rates of adherence and reduces the burden of psoriasis in a

  14. Improving the Reliability of Network Metrics in Structural Brain Networks by Integrating Different Network Weighting Strategies into a Single Graph

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stavros I. Dimitriadis


    Full Text Available Structural brain networks estimated from diffusion MRI (dMRI via tractography have been widely studied in healthy controls and patients with neurological and psychiatric diseases. However, few studies have addressed the reliability of derived network metrics both node-specific and network-wide. Different network weighting strategies (NWS can be adopted to weight the strength of connection between two nodes yielding structural brain networks that are almost fully-weighted. Here, we scanned five healthy participants five times each, using a diffusion-weighted MRI protocol and computed edges between 90 regions of interest (ROI from the Automated Anatomical Labeling (AAL template. The edges were weighted according to nine different methods. We propose a linear combination of these nine NWS into a single graph using an appropriate diffusion distance metric. We refer to the resulting weighted graph as an Integrated Weighted Structural Brain Network (ISWBN. Additionally, we consider a topological filtering scheme that maximizes the information flow in the brain network under the constraint of the overall cost of the surviving connections. We compared each of the nine NWS and the ISWBN based on the improvement of: (a intra-class correlation coefficient (ICC of well-known network metrics, both node-wise and per network level; and (b the recognition accuracy of each subject compared to the remainder of the cohort, as an attempt to access the uniqueness of the structural brain network for each subject, after first applying our proposed topological filtering scheme. Based on a threshold where the network level ICC should be >0.90, our findings revealed that six out of nine NWS lead to unreliable results at the network level, while all nine NWS were unreliable at the node level. In comparison, our proposed ISWBN performed as well as the best performing individual NWS at the network level, and the ICC was higher compared to all individual NWS at the node

  15. An Improved Consensus Linkage Map of Barley Based on Flow-Sorted Chromosomes and Single Nucleotide Polymorphism Markers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    María Muñoz-Amatriaín


    Full Text Available Recent advances in high-throughput genotyping have made it easier to combine information from different mapping populations into consensus genetic maps, which provide increased marker density and genome coverage compared to individual maps. Previously, a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP-based genotyping platform was developed and used to genotype 373 individuals in four barley ( L. mapping populations. This led to a 2943 SNP consensus genetic map with 975 unique positions. In this work, we add data from six additional populations and more individuals from one of the original populations to develop an improved consensus map from 1133 individuals. A stringent and systematic analysis of each of the 10 populations was performed to achieve uniformity. This involved reexamination of the four populations included in the previous map. As a consequence, we present a robust consensus genetic map that contains 2994 SNP loci mapped to 1163 unique positions. The map spans 1137.3 cM with an average density of one marker bin per 0.99 cM. A novel application of the genotyping platform for gene detection allowed the assignment of 2930 genes to flow-sorted chromosomes or arms, confirmed the position of 2545 SNP-mapped loci, added chromosome or arm allocations to an additional 370 SNP loci, and delineated pericentromeric regions for chromosomes 2H to 7H. Marker order has been improved and map resolution has been increased by almost 20%. These increased precision outcomes enable more optimized SNP selection for marker-assisted breeding and support association genetic analysis and map-based cloning. It will also improve the anchoring of DNA sequence scaffolds and the barley physical map to the genetic map.

  16. Perturbation During Treadmill Training Improves Dynamic Balance and Gait in Parkinson's Disease: A Single-Blind Randomized Controlled Pilot Trial. (United States)

    Steib, Simon; Klamroth, Sarah; Gaßner, Heiko; Pasluosta, Cristian; Eskofier, Björn; Winkler, Jürgen; Klucken, Jochen; Pfeifer, Klaus


    Gait and balance dysfunction are major symptoms in Parkinson's disease (PD). Treadmill training improves gait characteristics in this population but does not reflect the dynamic nature of controlling balance during ambulation in everyday life contexts. To evaluate whether postural perturbations during treadmill walking lead to superior effects on gait and balance performance compared with standard treadmill training. In this single-blind randomized controlled trial, 43 PD patients (Hoehn & Yahr stage 1-3.5) were assigned to either an 8-week perturbed treadmill intervention (n = 21) or a control group (n = 22) training on the identical treadmill without perturbations. Patients were assessed at baseline, postintervention, and at 3 months' follow-up. Primary endpoints were overground gait speed and balance (Mini-BESTest). Secondary outcomes included fast gait speed, walking capacity (2-Minute Walk Test), dynamic balance (Timed Up-and-Go), static balance (postural sway), and balance confidence (Activities-Specific Balance Confidence [ABC] scale). There were no significant between-group differences in change over time for the primary outcomes. At postintervention, both groups demonstrated similar improvements in overground gait speed ( P = .009), and no changes in the Mini-BESTest ( P = .641). A significant group-by-time interaction ( P = .048) existed for the Timed Up-and-Go, with improved performance only in the perturbation group. In addition, the perturbation but not the control group significantly increased walking capacity ( P = .038). Intervention effects were not sustained at follow-up. Our primary findings suggest no superior effect of perturbation training on gait and balance in PD patients. However, some favorable trends existed for secondary gait and dynamic balance parameters, which should be investigated in future trials.

  17. Aligning institutional priorities: engaging house staff in a quality improvement and safety initiative to fulfill Clinical Learning Environment Review objectives and electronic medical record Meaningful Use requirements. (United States)

    Flanagan, Meghan R; Foster, Carolyn C; Schleyer, Anneliese; Peterson, Gene N; Mandell, Samuel P; Rudd, Kristina E; Joyner, Byron D; Payne, Thomas H


    House staff quality improvement projects are often not aligned with training institution priorities. House staff are the primary users of inpatient problem lists in academic medical centers, and list maintenance has significant patient safety and financial implications. Improvement of the problem list is an important objective for hospitals with electronic health records under the Meaningful Use program. House staff surveys were used to create an electronic problem list manager (PLM) tool enabling efficient problem list updating. Number of new problems added and house staff perceptions of the problem list were compared before and after PLM intervention. The PLM was used by 654 house staff after release. Surveys demonstrated increased problem list updating (P = .002; response rate 47%). Mean new problems added per day increased from 64 pre-PLM to 125 post-PLM (P < .001). This innovative project serves as a model for successful engagement of house staff in institutional quality and safety initiatives with tangible institutional benefits. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Can Dual Task Walking Improve in Parkinson's Disease After External Focus of Attention Exercise? A Single Blind Randomized Controlled Trial. (United States)

    Beck, Eric N; Intzandt, Brittany N; Almeida, Quincy J


    It may be possible to use attention-based exercise to decrease demands associated with walking in Parkinson's disease (PD), and thus improve dual task walking ability. For example, an external focus of attention (focusing on the effect of an action on the environment) may recruit automatic control processes degenerated in PD, whereas an internal focus (limb movement) may recruit conscious (nonautomatic) control processes. Thus, we aimed to investigate how externally and internally focused exercise influences dual task walking and symptom severity in PD. Forty-seven participants with PD were randomized to either an Externally (n = 24) or Internally (n = 23) focused group and completed 33 one-hour attention-based exercise sessions over 11 weeks. In addition, 16 participants were part of a control group. Before, after, and 8 weeks following the program (pre/post/washout), gait patterns were measured during single and dual task walking (digit-monitoring task, ie, walking while counting numbers announced by an audio-track), and symptom severity (UPDRS-III) was assessed ON and OFF dopamine replacement. Pairwise comparisons (95% confidence intervals [CIs]) and repeated-measures analyses of variance were conducted. Pre to post: Dual task step time decreased in the external group (Δ = 0.02 seconds, CI 0.01-0.04). Dual task step length (Δ = 2.3 cm, CI 0.86-3.75) and velocity (Δ = 4.5 cm/s, CI 0.59-8.48) decreased (became worse) in the internal group. UPDRS-III scores (ON and OFF) decreased (improved) in only the External group. Pre to washout: Dual task step time ( P = .005) and percentage in double support ( P = .014) significantly decreased (improved) in both exercise groups, although only the internal group increased error on the secondary counting task (ie, more errors monitoring numbers). UPDRS-III scores in both exercise groups significantly decreased ( P = .001). Since dual task walking improvements were found immediately, and 8 weeks after the cessation of an

  19. A single-item self-rated health measure correlates with objective health status in the elderly: a survey in suburban Beijing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qinqin eMeng


    Full Text Available IntroductionThe measurement of health status of the elderly remains one important topic. Self-rated health status (SRH is considered to be a simple indicator to measure the health status of the old population. But some researchers still take a skeptical view about its reliability. This study aims to investigate the association between self-rated health indicator and health status of the elderly and discuss its subsequent public health implications.MethodsIn a total 1096 people who were 60 years of age or older from 1784 households from a suburban area of Beijing were interviewed using multistage stratified cluster sampling. SRH was measured by a single question please choose one point in this 0-100 scale which can best represent your health today?. The disease status and physical functional status were also obtained. A multiple linear regression was conducted to test the associate between SRH and individual’s disease/functional status.ResultsThe average of SRH scores of the elderly was 72.49±15.64 (on a 1 to 100 scale. The SRH scores declined not only with the severity of self-reported mental/disease status, but also with the decrease of physical functional status. Multiple linear regression showed that after adjustment for other variables, two-week sickness, chronic diseases, hospitalization, and ability of self-care (washing and dressing were able to explain 35% of the variation in SRH among the elderly. Among them, disease status and self-care ability were the most powerful predictor of SRH. After adjusting other variables, physical functional status could explain only 5% of the variation in SRH.ConclusionSRH reflects the disease/functional health status of the elderly. It is an easy-to-implement variable and it can reduce both recall bias and investigator bias, thus being widely used in health surveys. It is a cost-effective means of measuring the health status. However, the comparability of SRH in different populations should be studied

  20. Objective lens (United States)

    Olczak, Eugene G. (Inventor)


    An objective lens and a method for using same. The objective lens has a first end, a second end, and a plurality of optical elements. The optical elements are positioned between the first end and the second end and are at least substantially symmetric about a plane centered between the first end and the second end.

  1. Agile Objects (United States)

    German, Senta; Harris, Jim


    In this article, the authors argue that the art-historical canon, however it is construed, has little relevance to the selection of objects for museum-based teaching. Their contention is that all objects are fundamentally agile and capable of interrogation from any number of disciplinary standpoints, and that the canon of museum education,…

  2. Elective single-embryo transfer improves cumulative pregnancy outcome in young patients but not in women of advanced reproductive age. (United States)

    Fujimoto, Akihisa; Morishima, Kaoru; Harada, Miyuki; Hirata, Tetsuya; Osuga, Yutaka; Fujii, Tomoyuki


    The purpose of the present study is to assess the significance of elective single-embryo transfer (eSET) in older women. The outcomes of assisted reproductive technology between 2001 and 2013 at single institution were retrospectively evaluated. Cumulative live birth rates (CLBRs) in one oocyte retrieval cycle were compared between those who underwent eSET and multiple embryo transfer (MET) in fresh cycles. The outcomes of 429 eSET cycles and 965 MET cycles were compared. CLBRs in eSET were higher than those of MET in women under 37 and were comparable in women aged 37 and over. The analysis of the outcomes separately in three age subgroups showed a significantly higher CLBR in young eSET (aged under 37) than that in young MET and similar CLBR between older (aged 37-40 and over 40) eSET and MET. Multiple birth rates were lower in eSET in all age groups. Multivariate logistic regression analyses showed that, in women aged under 37, number of frozen embryos, presence of good-quality embryos, and eSET were significantly related to cumulative live birth. In women aged between 37 and 40, age and number of frozen embryos were significantly related, while eSET was not. eSET in women under 37 resulted in increased CLBR compared with MET. In women aged between 37 and 40, CLBR in eSET group was similar with that in MET group. In both age groups, eSET reduced multiple birth rates. The significance of eSET in older women is limited presently, and further research on the strategy to improve cumulative outcomes is necessary.

  3. Improving preimplantation genetic diagnosis for Fragile X syndrome: two new powerful single-round multiplex indirect and direct tests. (United States)

    Kieffer, Emmanuelle; Nicod, Jean-Christophe; Gardes, Nathalie; Kastner, Claire; Becker, Nicolas; Celebi, Catherine; Pirrello, Olivier; Rongières, Catherine; Koscinski, Isabelle; Gosset, Philippe; Moutou, Céline


    Fragile X syndrome (FraX) is caused by the expansion of an unstable CGG repeat located in the Fragile X mental retardation 1 gene (FMR1) gene. Preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) can be proposed to couples at risk of transmitting the disease, that is, when the female carries a premutation or a full mutation. We describe two new single-cell, single-round multiplex PCR for indirect and direct diagnosis of FraX on biopsied embryos. These tests include five unpublished, highly heterozygous simple sequence repeats, and the co-amplification of non-expanded CGG repeats for the direct test. Heterozygosity of the new markers ranged from 69 to 81%. The mean rate of non-informative marker included in the tests was low (26% and 23% for the new indirect and direct tests, respectively). This strategy allows offering a PGD for FraX to 96% of couples requesting it in our centre. A conclusive genotype was obtained in all cells with a rate of cells presenting an allele dropout ranging from 17% for the indirect test to 26% for the direct test. The new indirect test was applied for eight PGD cycles: 32 embryos were analysed, 9 were transferred and 3 healthy babies were born. By multiplexing these highly informative markers, robustness of the diagnosis is improved and the loss of potentially healthy embryos (because they are non-diagnosed or misdiagnosed) is limited. This may increase the chances of success of couples requesting a PGD for FraX, in particular, when premature ovarian insufficiency in premutated women leads to a reduced number of embryos available for analysis.

  4. Improving Early Palliative Care with a Scalable, Stepped Peer Navigator and Social Work Intervention: A Single-Arm Clinical Trial. (United States)

    Bekelman, David B; Johnson-Koenke, Rachel; Bowles, Daniel W; Fischer, Stacy M


    Patients with cancer could benefit from early primary (i.e., basic) palliative care. Scalable models of care delivery are needed. Examine the feasibility of a stepped peer navigator and social work intervention developed to improve palliative care outcomes. Single-arm prospective clinical trial. The peer navigator educated patients to advocate for pain and symptom management with their healthcare providers, motivated patients to pursue advance care planning, and discussed the role of hospice. The social worker saw patients with persistent psychosocial distress. Patients with advanced cancer at a VA Medical Center not currently in palliative care or hospice whose oncologist would not be surprised if the patient died in the subsequent year. Participation and retention rates, patient-reported symptoms and quality of life, advance directive documentation, patient satisfaction survey, and semistructured interviews. The participation rate was 38% (17/45), and 35% (7/17) completed final survey measures. Patients had stage IV (81%) and primarily genitourinary (47%) and lung (24%) malignancies. Median Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group performance status was 0. Patient-reported surveys indicated low distress (mean scores: Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy-General, 75.3 [standard deviation {SD} 17.6]; Edmonton Symptom Assessment Scale symptom scores ranged from 1.6 to 3.8; Patient Health Questionnaire-9, 5.7 [SD 5.2]; and Generalized Anxiety Disorder-7, 2.8 [SD 4.1]). Of those who had not completed advance directives at baseline (n = 11, 65%), five completed them by the end of study (5/11, 45%). Patients who completed satisfaction surveys (n = 7) and interviews (n = 4) provided mixed reviews of the intervention. At a single site, a stepped peer navigator and social work palliative care study had several challenges to feasibility, including low patient-reported distress and loss to follow-up.

  5. Single- and multiple-set resistance training improves skeletal and respiratory muscle strength in elderly women

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abrahin O


    Full Text Available Odilon Abrahin,1–3 Rejane P Rodrigues,1–3 Vanderson C Nascimento,3 Marzo E Da Silva-Grigoletto,1,4 Evitom C Sousa,3 Anderson C Marçal1,2 1Department of Physical Education, Federal University of Sergipe, Sergipe, Brazil; 2Center of Research in Intracellular Signaling, Department of Morphology, Federal University of Sergipe, Sergipe, Brazil; 3Laboratory of Resistance Exercise and Health, Sports Department, University of Pará State, Belem, Brazil; 4Scientific Sport, Sergipe, Brazil Introduction: Aging involves a progressive reduction of respiratory muscle strength as well as muscle strength. Purpose: Compare the effects of resistance training volume on the maximum inspiratory pressure (MIP, maximum expiratory pressure (MEP, functional performance, and muscle strength in elderly women. Methods: Thirty elderly women were randomly assigned to a group performing either single sets (1-SET or three sets (3-SET of exercises. The sit-to-stand test, MIP, MEP, and muscle strength were assessed before and after 24 training sessions. Progressive resistance training was performed two times per week for a total of 8–12 repetitions, using the main muscle groups of the upper and lower limbs. Results: The main results showed that the participants significantly increased their MEP (P<0.05; 1-SET: 34.6%; 3-SET: 35.8% and MIP (P<0.05; 1-SET: 13.7%; 3-SET: 11.2%. Both groups also improved in the sit-to-stand test (P<0.05; 1-SET: 10.6%; 3-SET: 17.1%. After 24 training sessions, muscle strength also significantly increased (P<0.0001; 40%–80% in both groups. An intergroup comparison did not show any statistically significant differences between the groups in any of the parameters analyzed. Conclusion: Single- and multiple-set resistance training programs increased MIP, MEP, muscle strength, and sit-to-stand test performance in elderly women after 24 sessions of training. In conclusion, our results suggested that elderly women who are not in the habit of

  6. Trusted Objects

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)



    In the world of computers a trusted object is a collection of possibly-sensitive data and programs that can be allowed to reside and execute on a computer, even on an adversary's machine. Beyond the scope of one computer we believe that network-based agents in high-consequence and highly reliable applications will depend on this approach, and that the basis for such objects is what we call ''faithful execution.''

  7. Transglutaminase-catalyzed covalent multimerization of Camelidae anti-human TNF single domain antibodies improves neutralizing activity. (United States)

    Plagmann, Ingo; Chalaris, Athena; Kruglov, Andrei A; Nedospasov, Sergei; Rosenstiel, Philip; Rose-John, Stefan; Scheller, Jürgen


    Tumor necrosis factor (TNF) plays an important role in chronic inflammatory disorders, such as Rheumatoid Arthritis and Crohn's disease. Recently, monoclonal Camelidae variable heavy-chain domain-only antibodies (V(H)H) were developed to antagonize the action of human TNF (hTNF). Here, we show that hTNF-V(H)H does not interfere with hTNF trimerization, but competes with hTNF for hTNF-receptor binding. Moreover, we describe posttranslational dimerization and multimerization of hTNF-V(H)H molecules in vitro catalyzed by microbial transglutaminases (MTG). The ribonuclease S-tag-peptide was shown to act as a peptidyl substrate in covalent protein cross-linking reactions catalyzed by MTG from Streptomyces mobaraensis. The S-tag sequence was C-terminally fused to the hTNF-V(H)H and the fusion protein was expressed and purified from Escherichia coli culture supernatants. hTNF-V(H)H-S-tag fusion proteins were efficiently dimerized and multimerized by MTG whereas hTNF-V(H)H was not susceptible to protein cross-linking. Cell cytotoxicity assays, using hTNF as apoptosis inducing cytokine, revealed that dimerized and multimerized hTNF-V(H)H proteins were much more active than the monomeric hTNF-V(H)H. We hypothesize that improved inhibition by dimeric and multimeric single chain hTNF-V(H)H proteins is caused by avidity effects.

  8. Anthropometry-corrected exposure modeling as a method to improve trunk posture assessment with a single inclinometer. (United States)

    Van Driel, Robin; Trask, Catherine; Johnson, Peter W; Callaghan, Jack P; Koehoorn, Mieke; Teschke, Kay


    Measuring trunk posture in the workplace commonly involves subjective observation or self-report methods or the use of costly and time-consuming motion analysis systems (current gold standard). This work compared trunk inclination measurements using a simple data-logging inclinometer with trunk flexion measurements using a motion analysis system, and evaluated adding measures of subject anthropometry to exposure prediction models to improve the agreement between the two methods. Simulated lifting tasks (n=36) were performed by eight participants, and trunk postures were simultaneously measured with each method. There were significant differences between the two methods, with the inclinometer initially explaining 47% of the variance in the motion analysis measurements. However, adding one key anthropometric parameter (lower arm length) to the inclinometer-based trunk flexion prediction model reduced the differences between the two systems and accounted for 79% of the motion analysis method's variance. Although caution must be applied when generalizing lower-arm length as a correction factor, the overall strategy of anthropometric modeling is a novel contribution. In this lifting-based study, by accounting for subject anthropometry, a single, simple data-logging inclinometer shows promise for trunk posture measurement and may have utility in larger-scale field studies where similar types of tasks are performed.

  9. Improving Performance and Versatility of Systems Based on Single-Frequency DFT Detectors Such as AD5933

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leonid Matsiev


    Full Text Available Turning grand concepts such as the Internet of Things (IoT and Smart Cities into reality requires the development and deployment of a wide variety of computing devices incorporated into the Internet infrastructure. Unsupervised sensing is the cornerstone capability that these devices must have to perform useful functions, while also having low cost of acquisition and ownership, little energy consumption and a small footprint. Impedimetric sensing systems based on the so-called single-frequency DFT detectors possess many of these desirable attributes and are often introduced in remote monitoring and wearable devices. This study presents new methods of improving performance of such detectors. It demonstrates that the main source of systematic errors is the discontinuous test phasor causing the crosstalk between the in-phase and quadrature outputs and the leakage of the input signal. The study derives expressions for these errors as a function of the number of samples and operating frequency, and provides methods for correction. The proposed methods are applied to the operation of a practical device—a network analyzer integrated circuit AD5933—and discussed in detail. These methods achieve complete elimination of leakage errors and expansion of the low limit of the operation frequency range by nearly two decades without additional hardware.

  10. Technology-based programs to improve walking behavior of persons with multiple disabilities: two single-case studies. (United States)

    Lancioni, Giulio E; Singh, Nirbhay N; O'Reilly, Mark F; Sigafoos, Jeff; Alberti, Gloria; Boccasini, Adele; Oliva, Doretta; Buono, Serafino


    Assessing two technology-based programs for reducing toe walking and breaks during walking of two men with multiple disabilities, respectively. The men were involved in separate single-case studies, each of which was carried out according to an ABAB design. The technology included a microprocessor with specific software, optic sensors, and visual plus vibrotactile or auditory systems for presenting preferred stimuli. In Study I, the man received 1 s of preferred flickering lights and vibratory input for each step performed with the heel of the left foot touching the ground or coming close to it (i.e. within a 2-mm distance). In Study II, the other man received 10 s of preferred music anytime he crossed one of the small marks present along the travel routes. The B phases showed that (a) the man included in Study I increased the percentages of left- and right-foot steps performed with the heels touching or nearing the ground to above 85% and 70%, respectively, and (b) the man included in Study II walked with very few breaks. Technology-based programs can be highly effective in helping persons with multiple disabilities improve their walking behavior.

  11. An improved labeling strategy enables automated detection of single-virus fusion and assessment of HIV-1 protease activity in single virions. (United States)

    Sood, Chetan; Francis, Ashwanth C; Desai, Tanay M; Melikyan, Gregory B


    Enveloped viruses transfer their genomes into host cells by fusing their membrane to that of the cell. To visualize single-virus fusion in living cells, researchers take advantage of the proteolytic maturation of HIV, type 1 (HIV-1), which can generate free fluorescent proteins within the viral particle. Co-labeling viruses with a content marker and a fluorescently tagged Vpr (a viral core protein) enables detection of single-virus fusions, but a major limitation of this approach is that not all viral particles incorporate both markers. Here we designed a labeling strategy based on the bifunctional mCherry-2xCL-YFP-Vpr construct, in which 2xCL denotes a tandem cleavage site for the viral protease. This bifunctional marker was efficiently cleaved during virus maturation, producing free mCherry and the core-associated YFP-Vpr. A nearly perfect colocalization of these two markers in virions and their fixed 1:1 ratio enabled automated detection of single-particle fusion in both fixed and live cells based on loss of the mCherry signal. Furthermore, a drop in FRET efficiency between YFP and mCherry because of cleavage of the bifunctional marker, which manifested as a marked shift in the normalized YFP/mCherry fluorescence ratio, reliably predicted viral protease activity in single virions. This feature could discriminate between the particles containing free mCherry, and therefore likely representing mature viruses, and immature particles whose fusion cannot be detected. In summary, our new labeling strategy offers several advantages compared with previous approaches, including increased reliability and throughput of detection of viral fusion. We anticipate that our method will have significant utility for studying viral fusion and maturation. © 2017 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  12. Improving the human readability of Arden Syntax medical logic modules using a concept-oriented terminology and object-oriented programming expressions. (United States)

    Choi, Jeeyae; Bakken, Suzanne; Lussier, Yves A; Mendonça, Eneida A


    Medical logic modules are a procedural representation for sharing task-specific knowledge for decision support systems. Based on the premise that clinicians may perceive object-oriented expressions as easier to read than procedural rules in Arden Syntax-based medical logic modules, we developed a method for improving the readability of medical logic modules. Two approaches were applied: exploiting the concept-oriented features of the Medical Entities Dictionary and building an executable Java program to replace Arden Syntax procedural expressions. The usability evaluation showed that 66% of participants successfully mapped all Arden Syntax rules to Java methods. These findings suggest that these approaches can play an essential role in the creation of human readable medical logic modules and can potentially increase the number of clinical experts who are able to participate in the creation of medical logic modules. Although our approaches are broadly applicable, we specifically discuss the relevance to concept-oriented nursing terminologies and automated processing of task-specific nursing knowledge.

  13. Single breath-hold real-time cine MR imaging: improved temporal resolution using generalized autocalibrating partially parallel acquisition (GRAPPA) algorithm

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wintersperger, Bernd J.; Nikolaou, Konstantin; Dietrich, Olaf; Reiser, Maximilian F.; Schoenberg, Stefan O.; Rieber, Johannes; Nittka, Matthias


    The purpose of this study was to test parallel imaging techniques for improvement of temporal resolution in multislice single breath-hold real-time cine steady-state free precession (SSFP) in comparison with standard segmented single-slice SSFP techniques. Eighteen subjects were examined on a 1.5-T scanner using a multislice real-time cine SSFP technique using the GRAPPA algorithm. Global left ventricular parameters (EDV, ESV, SV, EF) were evaluated and results compared with a standard segmented single-slice SSFP technique. Results for EDV (r=0.93), ESV (r=0.99), SV (r=0.83), and EF (r=0.99) of real-time multislice SSFP imaging showed a high correlation with results of segmented SSFP acquisitions. Systematic differences between both techniques were statistically non-significant. Single breath-hold multislice techniques using GRAPPA allow for improvement of temporal resolution and for accurate assessment of global left ventricular functional parameters. (orig.)

  14. Hypoxia-Inducible Factor Pathway Inhibition Resolves Tumor Hypoxia and Improves Local Tumor Control After Single-Dose Irradiation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Helbig, Linda [OncoRay–National Center for Radiation Research in Oncology, Medical Faculty Carl Gustav Carus, Technische Universität Dresden, Dresden (Germany); Department of Radiation Oncology, University Hospital Carl Gustav Carus, Technische Universität Dresden, Dresden (Germany); Koi, Lydia [OncoRay–National Center for Radiation Research in Oncology, Medical Faculty Carl Gustav Carus, Technische Universität Dresden, Dresden (Germany); Department of Radiation Oncology, University Hospital Carl Gustav Carus, Technische Universität Dresden, Dresden (Germany); Deutsches Konsortium für Translationale Krebsforschung, Site Dresden, Dresden (Germany); Brüchner, Kerstin [Department of Radiation Oncology, University Hospital Carl Gustav Carus, Technische Universität Dresden, Dresden (Germany); Institute of Radiooncology Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf, Dresden (Germany); Gurtner, Kristin [Department of Radiation Oncology, University Hospital Carl Gustav Carus, Technische Universität Dresden, Dresden (Germany); Hess-Stumpp, Holger; Unterschemmann, Kerstin [Global Drug Discovery, Bayer Pharma, Berlin (Germany); Pruschy, Martin [Radiation Oncology, University of Zurich, Zurich (Switzerland); and others


    Purpose: To study the effects of BAY-84-7296, a novel orally bioavailable inhibitor of mitochondrial complex I and hypoxia-inducible factor 1 (HIF-1) activity, on hypoxia, microenvironment, and radiation response of tumors. Methods and Materials: UT-SCC-5 and UT-SCC-14 human squamous cell carcinomas were transplanted subcutaneously in nude mice. When tumors reached 4 mm in diameter BAY-84-7296 (Bayer Pharma AG) or carrier was daily administered to the animals. At 7 mm tumors were either excised for Western blot and immunohistologic investigations or were irradiated with single doses. After irradiation animals were randomized to receive BAY-84-7296 maintenance or carrier. Local tumor control was evaluated 150 days after irradiation, and the dose to control 50% of tumors (TCD{sub 50}) was calculated. Results: BAY-84-7296 decreased nuclear HIF-1α expression. Daily administration of inhibitor for approximately 2 weeks resulted in a marked decrease of pimonidazole hypoxic fraction in UT-SCC-5 (0.5% vs 21%, P<.0001) and in UT-SCC-14 (0.3% vs 19%, P<.0001). This decrease was accompanied by a significant increase in fraction of perfused vessels in UT-SCC-14 but not in UT-SCC-5. Bromodeoxyuridine and Ki67 labeling indices were significantly reduced only in UT-SCC-5. No significant changes were observed in vascular area or necrosis. BAY-84-7296 before single-dose irradiation significantly decreased TCD{sub 50}, with an enhancement ratio of 1.37 (95% confidence interval [CI] 1.13-1.72) in UT-SCC-5 and of 1.55 (95% CI 1.26-1.94) in UT-SCC-14. BAY-84-7296 maintenance after irradiation did not further decrease TCD{sub 50}. Conclusions: BAY-84-7296 resulted in a marked decrease in tumor hypoxia and substantially reduced radioresistance of tumor cells with the capacity to cause a local recurrence after irradiation. The data suggest that reduction of cellular hypoxia tolerance by BAY-84-7296 may represent the primary biological mechanism underlying the observed enhancement of

  15. Fashion Objects

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Bjørn Schiermer


    This article attempts to create a framework for understanding modern fashion phenomena on the basis of Durkheim's sociology of religion. It focuses on Durkheim's conception of the relation between the cult and the sacred object, on his notion of 'exteriorisation', and on his theory of the social...... symbol in an attempt to describe the peculiar attraction of the fashion object and its social constitution. However, Durkheim's notions of cult and ritual must undergo profound changes if they are to be used in an analysis of fashion. The article tries to expand the Durkheimian cult, radically enlarging...... it without totally dispersing it; depicting it as held together exclusively by the sheer 'force' of the sacred object. Firstly, the article introduces the themes and problems surrounding Durkheim's conception of the sacred. Next, it briefly sketches an outline of fashion phenomena in Durkheimian categories...

  16. Analysis and Performance Improvement of WPT Systems in the Environment of Single Non-Ferromagnetic Metal Plates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Linlin Tan


    Full Text Available Wireless power transfer (WPT is greatly affected when the transmission channel is surrounded by non-ferromagnetic metallic objects and the alternating magnetic field interacts with the metal conductor, which is more of an issue in wirelessly charged electric vehicle (EV applications. This paper analyses the performances of a WPT system in an environment with a non-ferromagnetic metal plate. The impedance model of the WPT system in the metal environment is established. Moreover the variation law of a coil’s equivalent inductance and resistance is deduced when the coil is surrounded by the non-ferromagnetic metal plate. Meanwhile, simulations, theory and experiments all confirm that the model is correct. Finally, since the system performance of a wireless charging system is influenced by non-ferromagnetic metals, this paper puts forward a method to improve the performance, that is, to place ferrite cores between the receiving coil and a metal plate. Experiments are carried out to verify the method, and the desired results are achieved.

  17. Fashion Objects

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Bjørn Schiermer


    This article attempts to create a framework for understanding modern fashion phenomena on the basis of Durkheim's sociology of religion. It focuses on Durkheim's conception of the relation between the cult and the sacred object, on his notion of 'exteriorisation', and on his theory of the social...... symbol in an attempt to describe the peculiar attraction of the fashion object and its social constitution. However, Durkheim's notions of cult and ritual must undergo profound changes if they are to be used in an analysis of fashion. The article tries to expand the Durkheimian cult, radically enlarging...... of the enlargement of the cult into individual behaviour....

  18. Improving the thermal integrity of new single-family detached residential buildings: Documentation for a regional database of capital costs and space conditioning load savings

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Koomey, J.G.; McMahon, J.E.; Wodley, C.


    This report summarizes the costs and space-conditioning load savings from improving new single-family building shells. It relies on survey data from the National Association of Home-builders (NAHB) to assess current insulation practices for these new buildings, and NAHB cost data (aggregated to the Federal region level) to estimate the costs of improving new single-family buildings beyond current practice. Space-conditioning load savings are estimated using a database of loads for prototype buildings developed at Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory, adjusted to reflect population-weighted average weather in each of the ten federal regions and for the nation as a whole

  19. Multimodal imaging analysis of single-photon emission computed tomography and magnetic resonance tomography for improving diagnosis of Parkinson's disease

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Barthel, H.; Georgi, P.; Slomka, P.; Dannenberg, C.; Kahn, T.


    Parkinson's disease (PD) is characterized by a degeneration of nigrostriated dopaminergic neurons, which can be imaged with 123 I-labeled 2β-carbomethoxy-3β-(4-iodophenyl) tropane ([ 123 I]β-CIT) and single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT). However, the quality of the region of interest (ROI) technique used for quantitative analysis of SPECT data is compromised by limited anatomical information in the images. We investigated whether the diagnosis of PD can be improved by combining the use of SPECT images with morphological image data from magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)/computed tomography (CT). We examined 27 patients (8 men, 19 women; aged 55±13 years) with PD (Hoehn and Yahr stage 2.1±0.8) by high-resolution [ 123 I]β-CIT SPECT (185-200 MBq, Ceraspect camera). SPECT images were analyzed both by a unimodal technique (ROIs defined directly within the SPECT studies) and a multimodal technique (ROIs defined within individual MRI/CT studies and transferred to the corresponding interactively coregistered SPECT studies). [ 123 I]β-CIT binding ratios (cerebellum as reference), which were obtained for heads of caudate nuclei (CA), putamina (PU), and global striatal structures were compared with clinical parameters. Differences between contra- and ipsilateral (related to symptom dominance) striatal [ 123 I]β-CIT binding ratios proved to be larger in the multimodal ROI technique than in the unimodal approach (e.g., for PU: 1.2*** vs. 0.7**). Binding ratios obtained by the unimodal ROI technique were significantly correlated with those of the multimodal technique (e.g., for CA: y=0.97x+2.8; r=0.70; P com subscore (r=-0.49* vs. -0.32). These results show that the impact of [ 123 I]β-CIT SPECT for diagnosing PD is affected by the method used to analyze the SPECT images. The described multimodal approach, which is based on coregistration of SPECT and morphological imaging data, leads to improved determination of the degree of this dopaminergic disorder

  20. Single temperature liquefaction process at different operating pHs to improve ethanol production from Indian rice and corn feedstock. (United States)

    Gohel, V; Ranganathan, K; Duan, G


    Conventional grain ethanol manufacturing is a high-temperature energy-intensive process comprising of multiple-unit operations when combined with lower ethanol recovery results in higher production cost. In liquefaction, jet cooking accounts for significant energy cost, while strong acid or base used for pH adjustment presents a safety hazard. A need is felt for sustainable ethanol manufacturing process that is less hazardous, consumes lower energy, and operates in a low pH range of 4.50-5.50. A single temperature liquefaction (STL) process that could efficiently operate at lower liquefaction temperature over a pH range of 4.50-5.50 was developed using rice and corn feedstock. Ethanol recovery witnessed at pH 4.5, 5.0, and 5.5 are 481.2 ± 1.5, 492.4 ± 1.5, and 493.6 ± 1.5 L MT -1 rice, respectively. Similarly, ethanol recovery witnessed at pH 4.5, 5.0, and 5.5 are 404.6 ± 1.3, 413.9 ± 0.8, and 412.4 ± 1.8 L MT -1 corn, respectively. The improvement in ethanol recovery is attributed to higher starch conversion by alpha-amylase even at pH as low as 4.50. Thus, the STL process operated at pH lower than 5.20 is poised to enhance sustainability by offering dual advantage of energy as well as chemical saving.

  1. Highly sensitive and quantitative FRET-FLIM imaging in single dendritic spines using improved non-radiative YFP. (United States)

    Murakoshi, Hideji; Lee, Seok-Jin; Yasuda, Ryohei


    Two-photon fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy (TPFLIM) enables the quantitative measurements of fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) in small subcellular compartments in light scattering tissue. We evaluated and optimized the FRET pair of mEGFP (monomeric EGFP with the A206K mutation) and REACh (non-radiative YFP variants) for TPFLIM. We characterized several mutants of REACh in terms of their "darkness," and their ability to act as a FRET acceptor for mEGFP in HeLa cells and hippocampal neurons. Since the commonly used monomeric mutation A206K increases the brightness of REACh, we introduced a different monomeric mutation (F223R) which does not affect the brightness. Also, we found that the folding efficiency of original REACh, as measured by the fluorescence lifetime of a mEGFP-REACh tandem dimer, was low and variable from cell to cell. Introducing two folding mutations (F46L, Q69M) into REACh increased the folding efficiency by approximately 50%, and reduced the variability of FRET signal. Pairing mEGFP with the new REACh (super-REACh, or sREACh) improved the signal-to-noise ratio compared to the mEGFP-mRFP or mEGFP-original REACh pair by approximately 50%. Using this new pair, we demonstrated that the fraction of actin monomers in filamentous and globular forms in single dendritic spines can be quantitatively measured with high sensitivity. Thus, the mEGFP-sREACh pair is suited for quantitative FRET measurement by TPFLIM, and enables us to measure protein-protein interactions in individual dendritic spines in brain slices with high sensitivity.

  2. New trials for improving diagnostic accuracy of stress technetium-99m-tetrofosmin single photon emission computed tomography

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sasaki, Ryu [Fujisawa City Hospital, Kanagawa (Japan); Mitani, Isao; Kitamura, Yutaka; Nemoto, Toyoji; Tsukahara, Kengo; Tanaka, Yutaka; Higuma, Kikuhiko


    This study evaluated the influence of extra-cardiac accumulation in technetium-99m-tetrofosmin myocardial single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) imaging. Technetium-99m-tetrofosmin myocardial SPECT was performed in 247 patients from 1997 to 1999. To evaluate the sensitivity, 42 patients with inferior infarction were selected. To evaluate the specificity, 32 patients with no significant perfusion defect and low pretest likelihood (<15%) of coronary artery disease and 13 patients with normal coronary angiography were selected. Firstly, the SPECT raw data were evaluated according to the effects of diaphragm and breast, the position and the degree of accumulation of the liver, gall bladder and intestine. Then, the myocardial tracer uptake was scored semiquantitatively from 0 (normal) to 4 (perfusion defect) in the 13 segments of the left ventricle. The specificity was 86.7% and the sensitivity was 92.8%. Perfusion abnormality of the inferior wall was observed in 6 of 45 patients with a low pretest likelihood of coronary artery disease. These 6 patients were classified into the false positive group, and the other 39 patients were classified into the true negative group. The liver position and the liver accumulation on the stress images were significantly higher in the false positive group than in the true negative group (p<0.001), but only the liver position on the rest images was significantly higher in the false positive group (p<0.001). By estimating the defect 1 point lower for the high-positioned liver patients, specificity improved from 86.7% to 100% and sensitivity did not change. Inferior perfusion defect on technetium-99m-tetrofosmin myocardial SPECT of high-positioned liver patients needs to be evaluated with special caution. (author)

  3. A Highly Robust Single-Loop Current Control Scheme for Grid-Connected Inverter with an Improved LCCL Filter Configuration

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pan, Donghua; Ruan, Xinbo; Wang, Xiongfei


    Single-loop current control is an attractive scheme for the LCL-type grid-connected inverter due to its simplicity and low cost. However, conventional single-loop control schemes, which command either the inverter current or the grid current, are subject to the specific resonance frequency region...

  4. A Three-Level Quasi-Two-Stage Single-Phase PFC Converter with Flexible Output Voltage and Improved Conversion Efficiency

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tang, Yi; Zhu, Dexuan; Jin, Chi


    This paper presents a three-level quasi-two-stage single-phase power factor correction (PFC) converter that has flexible output voltage and improved conversion efficiency. The proposed PFC converter features sinusoidal input current, three-level output characteristic, and a wide range of output dc...

  5. Rapid improvement of depressive symptoms and cognition in an elderly patient with a single session of piano playing: a clinical treatment report. (United States)

    Manalai, Gul; Manalai, Partam; Dutta, Raja; Fegan, Gerald; Scrofani, Philip


    Music has been used as a non-pharmacological modality in the treatment of different conditions since ancient times. It has received attention in modern medicine in recent decades, particularly in geriatric population. The effects of music on mood and cognition are well documented. The aim of the current case report is to highlight the benefits of musical activities in the geriatric population. We report a naturalistic treatment outcome in an elderly patient on a geriatric psychiatric unit related to a single session of piano playing. A rapid and sustained improvement in mood and cognition of an elderly patient was observed after a single session of playing piano. Notwithstanding the limitations of a single subject, uncontrolled case study, the effect was dramatic. Our findings support previous claims regarding music therapy including effects of a single session music-based therapeutic interventions, and we conclude that music therapy for geriatric patients with mood and cognitive deficits is worth further systematic investigation.

  6. Curcumin protects dopaminergic neurons against inflammation-mediated damage and improves motor dysfunction induced by single intranigral lipopolysaccharide injection. (United States)

    Sharma, Neha; Sharma, Sheetal; Nehru, Bimla


    Various studies have indicated a lower incidence and prevalence of neurological conditions in people consuming curcumin. The ability of curcumin to target multiple cascades, simultaneously, could be held responsible for its neuroprotective effects. The present study was designed to investigate the potential of curcumin in minimizing microglia-mediated damage in lipopolysaccharide (LPS) induced model of PD. Altered microglial functions and increased inflammatory profile of the CNS have severe behavioral consequences. In the current investigation, a single injection of LPS (5 ug/5 µl PBS) was injected into the substantia nigra (SN) of rats, and curcumin [40 mg/kg b.wt (i.p.)] was administered daily for a period of 21 days. LPS triggered an inflammatory response characterized by glial activation [Iba-1 and glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP)] and pro-inflammatory cytokine production (TNF-α and IL-1β) leading to extensive dopaminergic loss and behavioral abnormality in rats. The behavioral observations, biochemical markers, quantification of dopamine and its metabolites (DOPAC and HVA) using HPLC followed by IHC of tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) were evaluated after 21 days of LPS injection. Curcumin supplementation prevented dopaminergic degeneration in LPS-treated animals by normalizing the altered levels of biomarkers. Also, a significant improvement in TH levels as well as behavioral parameters (actophotometer, rotarod, beam walking and grid walking tests) were seen in LPS injected rats. Curcumin shielded the dopaminergic neurons against LPS-induced inflammatory response, which was associated with suppression of glial activation (microglia and astrocytes) and transcription factor NF-κB as depicted from RT-PCR and EMSA assay. Curcumin also suppressed microglial NADPH oxidase activation as observed from NADPH oxidase activity. The results suggested that one of the important mechanisms by which curcumin mediates its protective effects in the LPS-induced PD

  7. Poly(vinylidene fluoride)-functionalized single-walled carbon nanotubes for the preparation of composites with improved conductivity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vukićević, R.; Vukovic, I.; Stoyanov, H.; Korwitz, A.; Pospiech, D.; Kofod, G.; Loos, K.; Brinke, G. ten; Beuermann, S.


    The surface of single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) was functionalized with azide-terminated poly(vinylidene fluoride) (PVDF). Functionalization was confirmed by dispersibility, Raman spectroscopy, and thermogravimetric analyses. Raman spectra show disordering of the SWCNTs, thus, strongly

  8. Improving the light-emitting properties of single-layered polyfluorene light-emitting devices by simple ionic liquid blending (United States)

    Horike, Shohei; Nagaki, Hiroto; Misaki, Masahiro; Koshiba, Yasuko; Morimoto, Masahiro; Fukushima, Tatsuya; Ishida, Kenji


    This paper describes an evaluation of ionic liquids (ILs) as potential electrolytes for single-layered light-emitting devices with good emission performance. As optoelectronic devices continue to grow in abundance, high-performance light-emitting devices with a single emission layer are becoming increasingly important for low-cost production. We show that a simple technique of osmosing IL into the polymer layer can result in high luminous efficiency and good response times of single-layered light-emitting polymers, even without the additional stacking of charge carrier injection and transport layers. The IL contributions to the light-emission of the polymer are discussed from the perspectives of energy diagrams and of the electric double layers on the electrodes. Our findings enable a faster, cheaper, and lower-in-waste production of light-emitting devices.

  9. Improvements in kinematics, muscle activity and pain during functional tasks in females with patellofemoral pain following a single patterned electrical stimulation treatment. (United States)

    Glaviano, Neal R; Huntsman, Stephanie; Dembeck, Ashley; Hart, Joseph M; Saliba, Susan


    Individuals with patellofemoral pain present with altered hip muscle activation, faulty movement patterns, and pain during functional tasks. Examining new treatment options to address these impairments may better treat those with patellofemoral pain. The purpose of this study was to determine if patterned electrical stimulation to the lower extremity affects muscle activity, movement patterns, and pain following a single treatment. Fifteen females with patellofemoral pain were randomized to receive a single 15-minute treatment of either a patterned electrical neuromuscular stimulation or a sham. Peak kinematics of the knee, hip, and trunk, electromyography and pain were examined pre and post-intervention during a single leg squat and lateral step-down task. Group means and pre/post reduced kinematic values were also plotted during the entire task with 90% confidence intervals to identify differences in movement strategies. No baseline differences were found in peak kinematics between groups. No pre to post-intervention differences in peak knee, hip and trunk kinematics were found, however differences were seen when the quality of movement across the entire tasks was assessed. The electrical stimulation group had improved knee flexion and hip abduction during the lateral step-down. A significant improvement in gluteus medius activation following patterned electrical neuromuscular stimulation occurred during the step-down (P=0.039). Significant pain improvements were also seen in both the single leg squat (P=0.025) and lateral step-down (P=0.006). A single treatment of patterned electrical neuromuscular stimulation improved muscle activation, lower extremity kinematics during functional tasks, and pain. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. The single-leg Roman chair hold is more effective than the Nordic hamstring curl in improving hamstring strength-endurance in Gaelic footballers with previous hamstring injury. (United States)

    Macdonald, Ben; O'Neill, John; Pollock, Noel; Van Hooren, Bas


    Poor hamstring strength-endurance is a risk factor for hamstring injuries. This study investigated the effectiveness of the single-leg Roman hold and Nordic hamstring curl in improving hamstring strength-endurance. Twelve Gaelic footballers (mean ± standard deviation age, height and mass were 25.17 ± 3.46 years, 179.25 ± 5.88 cm, 85.75 ± 4.75 kilo) with a history of hamstring injury were randomized into 2 groups that performed 6 weeks of either Nordic hamstring curl, or single-leg Roman chair hold training. The single-leg hamstring bridge (SLHB) was measured pre- and post- intervention. The Roman chair group showed a very likely moderate magnitude improvement on SLHB performance for both legs (23.7% for the previously injured leg [90% confidence interval 9.6% to 39.6%] and 16.9% for the non-injured leg [6.2% to 28.8%]). The Nordic curl group showed a likely trivial change in SLHB performance for the non-injured leg (-2.1% [-6.7% to 2.6%]) and an unclear, but possibly trivial change for the previously injured leg (0.3% [-5.6% to 6.6%]). The Roman chair group improved very likely more with a moderate magnitude in both the non-injured (19.5% [8.0% to 32.2%]) and the previously injured leg (23.3% [8.5% to 40.0%]) compared to the Nordic curl group. This study demonstrated that 6-weeks single-leg Roman chair training substantially improved SLHB performance, suggesting that it may be an efficacious strategy to mitigate hamstring (re-) injury risk. Conversely, 6-weeks Nordic curl training did not substantially improve SLHB performance, suggesting this may not be the intervention of choice for modifying this risk factor.

  11. Simultaneous multislice imaging for native myocardial T1mapping: Improved spatial coverage in a single breath-hold. (United States)

    Weingärtner, Sebastian; Moeller, Steen; Schmitter, Sebastian; Auerbach, Edward; Kellman, Peter; Shenoy, Chetan; Akçakaya, Mehmet


    To develop a saturation recovery myocardial T 1 mapping method for the simultaneous multislice acquisition of three slices. Saturation pulse-prepared heart rate independent inversion recovery (SAPPHIRE) T 1 mapping was implemented with simultaneous multislice imaging using FLASH readouts for faster coverage of the myocardium. Controlled aliasing in parallel imaging (CAIPI) was used to achieve minimal noise amplification in three slices. Multiband reconstruction was performed using three linear reconstruction methods: Slice- and in-plane GRAPPA, CG-SENSE, and Tikhonov-regularized CG-SENSE. Accuracy, spatial variability, and interslice leakage were compared with single-band T 1 mapping in a phantom and in six healthy subjects. Multiband phantom T 1 times showed good agreement with single-band T 1 mapping for all three reconstruction methods (normalized root mean square error spatial variability compared with single-band imaging was lowest for GRAPPA (1.29-fold), with higher penalties for Tikhonov-regularized CG-SENSE (1.47-fold) and CG-SENSE (1.52-fold). In vivo multiband T 1 times showed no significant difference compared with single-band (T 1 time ± intersegmental variability: single-band, 1580 ± 119 ms; GRAPPA, 1572 ± 145 ms; CG-SENSE, 1579 ± 159 ms; Tikhonov, 1586 ± 150 ms [analysis of variance; P = 0.86]). Interslice leakage was smallest for GRAPPA (5.4%) and higher for CG-SENSE (6.2%) and Tikhonov-regularized CG-SENSE (7.9%). Multiband accelerated myocardial T 1 mapping demonstrated the potential for single-breath-hold T 1 quantification in 16 American Heart Association segments over three slices. A 1.2- to 1.4-fold higher in vivo spatial variability was observed, where GRAPPA-based reconstruction showed the highest homogeneity and the least interslice leakage. Magn Reson Med 78:462-471, 2017. © 2017 International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine. © 2017 International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine.

  12. [Achievement of therapeutic objectives]. (United States)

    Mantilla, Teresa


    Therapeutic objectives for patients with atherogenic dyslipidemia are achieved by improving patient compliance and adherence. Clinical practice guidelines address the importance of treatment compliance for achieving objectives. The combination of a fixed dose of pravastatin and fenofibrate increases the adherence by simplifying the drug regimen and reducing the number of daily doses. The good tolerance, the cost of the combination and the possibility of adjusting the administration to the patient's lifestyle helps achieve the objectives for these patients with high cardiovascular risk. Copyright © 2014 Sociedad Española de Arteriosclerosis y Elsevier España, S.L. All rights reserved.

  13. An improved kidney dissociation and reaggregation culture system results in nephrons arranged organotypically around a single collecting duct system


    Ganeva, Veronika; Unbekandt, Mathieu; Davies, Jamie A.


    Methods for constructing engineered "tissues" from simple suspensions of cells are valuable for investigations into basic developmental biology and for tissue engineering. We recently published a method for producing embryonic renal tissues from suspensions of embryonic mouse renal cells. This method reproduced the anatomies and differentiation states of nephrons and stroma very well; it had the limitation, however, that what would, in normal development, be a single, highly branched collecti...

  14. High-rise construction in Russia as one of the objectives of improving the management mechanism for living standards of the population (United States)

    Sergeeva, Svetlana; Komyshova, Lyudmila; Nagibina, Natalia


    The article is aimed at determining the significance of solving the problem of high-rise construction in Russia as one of the tasks of improving the mechanism of managing the living standards of the population. To determine the effectiveness of measures aimed at improving the quality of life management mechanism, the expert evaluation method is used. The paper presents the measures to improve the quality of life and consequently the migration attractiveness of the region. Despite a number of actual difficulties and lack of sufficient experience, there is an interest in the development of high-rise construction. The result of the analysis of the general demographic dynamics for the last fifteen years is shown. Migration is the most mobile tool for managing short-term demographic processes; therefore, great attention should be paid to this component. Moreover, it is necessary to take into account other consequences of migration.

  15. HipMatch: an object-oriented cross-platform program for accurate determination of cup orientation using 2D-3D registration of single standard X-ray radiograph and a CT volume. (United States)

    Zheng, Guoyan; Zhang, Xuan; Steppacher, Simon D; Murphy, Stephen B; Siebenrock, Klaus A; Tannast, Moritz


    The widely used procedure of evaluation of cup orientation following total hip arthroplasty using single standard anteroposterior (AP) radiograph is known inaccurate, largely due to the wide variability in individual pelvic orientation relative to X-ray plate. 2D-3D image registration methods have been introduced for an accurate determination of the post-operative cup alignment with respect to an anatomical reference extracted from the CT data. Although encouraging results have been reported, their extensive usage in clinical routine is still limited. This may be explained by their requirement of a CAD model of the prosthesis, which is often difficult to be organized from the manufacturer due to the proprietary issue, and by their requirement of either multiple radiographs or a radiograph-specific calibration, both of which are not available for most retrospective studies. To address these issues, we developed and validated an object-oriented cross-platform program called "HipMatch" where a hybrid 2D-3D registration scheme combining an iterative landmark-to-ray registration with a 2D-3D intensity-based registration was implemented to estimate a rigid transformation between a pre-operative CT volume and the post-operative X-ray radiograph for a precise estimation of cup alignment. No CAD model of the prosthesis is required. Quantitative and qualitative results evaluated on cadaveric and clinical datasets are given, which indicate the robustness and the accuracy of the program. HipMatch is written in object-oriented programming language C++ using cross-platform software Qt (TrollTech, Oslo, Norway), VTK, and Coin3D and is transportable to any platform.

  16. Selection of single grain seeds by 14N(n, γ)15N nuclear reaction for protein improvement

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Andras, L.; Balint, A.; Csoke, A.; Nagy, A.Z.


    A new, non-destructive screening technique was developed for determining the protein (total nitrogen) content of single grain seeds. Here, our first experiment is described where, in the case of maize samples, 300 s was used to perform one measurement on a seed with a semi-automatic device. This work was started in 1976 at the HFR reactor. Grenoble, in the Institut Max von Laue-Paul Langevin and is now continued in the framework of the scientific cooperation between the ILL and KFKI. (author)

  17. Improved blastocyst development of single cow OPU-derived presumptive zygotes by group culture with agarose-embedded helper embryos

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dey Shukla


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The in vitro culture of presumed zygotes derived from single cow ovum pick-up (OPU is important for the production of quality blastocysts maintaining pedigree. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the agar chip-embedded helper embryo coculture system for single cow OPU-derived zygotes by assessing embryo quality. Methods Cumulus oocyte complexes (COCs were collected from Hanwoo cows with high genetic merit twice a week using the ultra-sound guided OPU technique and from slaughterhouse ovaries. The Hanwoo cow COCs and slaughterhouse ovaries were matured in vitro, fertilized in vitro with thawed Hanwoo sperm and cultured for 24 h. The presumed zygotes were subsequently placed in three different culture systems: (1 control OPU (controlOPU with single cow OPU-derived presumed zygotes (2~8; (2 agar chip-embedded slaughterhouse helper embryo coculture (agarOPU with ten presumed zygotes including all presumed zygotes from a cow (2~8 and the rest from agar chip-embedded slaughterhouse presumed zygotes (8~2; and (3 slaughterhouse in vitro embryo production (sIVP with ten slaughterhouse ovary-derived presumed zygotes, each in 50 μL droplets. Day 8 blastocysts were assayed for apoptosis and gene expression using real time PCR. Results The coculture system promoted higher blastocyst development in OPU zygotes compared to control OPU zygotes cultured alone (35.2 vs. 13.9%; P CD9, 0.4-fold; AKRAB1, 0.3-fold and in cocultured zygotes (CD9, 0.3-fold; AKRAB1, 0.3-fold compared to sIVP blastocysts (1.0-fold. Moreover, genes involved in implantation and/or normal calf delivery were up-regulated (P PGSH2, 5.0-fold; TXN, 4.3-fold; PLAU, 1.7-fold and cocultured zygotes (PGSH2, 14.5-fold; TXN, 3.2-fold; PLAU, 6.8-fold compared to sIVP (1.0-fold blastocysts. However, the expression of PLAC8, TGF-β1, ODC1, ATP5A1 and CASP3 did not differ between the three culture groups. Conclusions Results show that the agar chip-embedded helper embryo

  18. Does Subcutaneous Infiltration of Liposomal Bupivacaine Following Single-Level Transforaminal Lumbar Interbody Fusion Surgery Improve Immediate Postoperative Pain Control? (United States)

    Tomov, Marko; Tou, Kevin; Winkel, Rose; Puffer, Ross; Bydon, Mohamad; Nassr, Ahmad; Huddleston, Paul; Yaszemski, Michael; Currier, Bradford; Freedman, Brett


    Retrospective case-control study using prospectively collected data. Evaluate the impact of liposomal bupivacaine (LB) on postoperative pain management and narcotic use following standardized single-level low lumbar transforaminal lumbar interbody fusion (TLIF). Poor pain control after surgery has been linked with decreased pain satisfaction and increased economic burden. Unfortunately, opioids have many limitations and side effects despite being the primary treatment of postoperative pain. LB may be a form of pre-emptive analgesia used to reduce the use of postoperative narcotics as evidence in other studies evaluating its use in single-level microdiskectomies. The infiltration of LB subcutaneously during wound closure was performed by a single surgeon beginning in July 2014 for all single-level lumbar TLIF spinal surgeries at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center. This cohort was compared against a control cohort of patients who underwent the same surgery by the same surgeon in the preceding 6 months. Statistical analysis was performed on relevant variables including: morphine equivalents of narcotic medication used (primary outcome), length of hospitalization, Visual Analog Scale pain scores, and total time spent on a patient-controlled analgesia (PCA) pump. A total of 30 patients were included in this study; 16 were in the intervention cohort and 14 were in the control cohort. The morphine equivalents of intravenous narcotic use postoperatively were significantly less in the LB cohort from day of surgery to postoperative day 3. Although the differences lost their statistical significance, the trend remained for total (oral and intravenous) narcotic consumption to be lower in the LB group. The patients who received the study intervention required an acute pain service consult less frequently (62.5% in LB cohort vs. 78.6% in control cohort). The amount of time spent on a PCA pump in the LB group was 31 hours versus 47 hours in the control group ( p =0.1506). Local

  19. Improving the counting efficiency in time-correlated single photon counting experiments by dead-time optimization

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Peronio, P.; Acconcia, G.; Rech, I.; Ghioni, M. [Dipartimento di Elettronica, Informazione e Bioingegneria, Politecnico di Milano, Piazza Leonardo da Vinci 32, 20133 Milano (Italy)


    Time-Correlated Single Photon Counting (TCSPC) has been long recognized as the most sensitive method for fluorescence lifetime measurements, but often requiring “long” data acquisition times. This drawback is related to the limited counting capability of the TCSPC technique, due to pile-up and counting loss effects. In recent years, multi-module TCSPC systems have been introduced to overcome this issue. Splitting the light into several detectors connected to independent TCSPC modules proportionally increases the counting capability. Of course, multi-module operation also increases the system cost and can cause space and power supply problems. In this paper, we propose an alternative approach based on a new detector and processing electronics designed to reduce the overall system dead time, thus enabling efficient photon collection at high excitation rate. We present a fast active quenching circuit for single-photon avalanche diodes which features a minimum dead time of 12.4 ns. We also introduce a new Time-to-Amplitude Converter (TAC) able to attain extra-short dead time thanks to the combination of a scalable array of monolithically integrated TACs and a sequential router. The fast TAC (F-TAC) makes it possible to operate the system towards the upper limit of detector count rate capability (∼80 Mcps) with reduced pile-up losses, addressing one of the historic criticisms of TCSPC. Preliminary measurements on the F-TAC are presented and discussed.

  20. Improving the counting efficiency in time-correlated single photon counting experiments by dead-time optimization (United States)

    Peronio, P.; Acconcia, G.; Rech, I.; Ghioni, M.


    Time-Correlated Single Photon Counting (TCSPC) has been long recognized as the most sensitive method for fluorescence lifetime measurements, but often requiring "long" data acquisition times. This drawback is related to the limited counting capability of the TCSPC technique, due to pile-up and counting loss effects. In recent years, multi-module TCSPC systems have been introduced to overcome this issue. Splitting the light into several detectors connected to independent TCSPC modules proportionally increases the counting capability. Of course, multi-module operation also increases the system cost and can cause space and power supply problems. In this paper, we propose an alternative approach based on a new detector and processing electronics designed to reduce the overall system dead time, thus enabling efficient photon collection at high excitation rate. We present a fast active quenching circuit for single-photon avalanche diodes which features a minimum dead time of 12.4 ns. We also introduce a new Time-to-Amplitude Converter (TAC) able to attain extra-short dead time thanks to the combination of a scalable array of monolithically integrated TACs and a sequential router. The fast TAC (F-TAC) makes it possible to operate the system towards the upper limit of detector count rate capability (˜80 Mcps) with reduced pile-up losses, addressing one of the historic criticisms of TCSPC. Preliminary measurements on the F-TAC are presented and discussed.

  1. Setting Single or Multiple Goals for Diet and Physical Activity Behaviors Improves Cardiovascular Disease Risk Factors in Adults With Type 2 Diabetes: A Pragmatic Pilot Randomized Trial. (United States)

    Swoboda, Christine M; Miller, Carla K; Wills, Celia E


    The purpose of this study was to evaluate a 4-month telephone-based goal-setting and decision support intervention among adults with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) and multiple risk factors for cardiovascular disease (CVD). A randomized pretest-posttest control group design was employed. Overweight or obese adults aged 40 to 75 years with T2DM and ≥1 additional CVD risk factor were provided with individualized CVD risk information. At baseline and each biweekly telephone call, the multiple-goal group self-selected both diet- and physical activity-related goals, the single goal group set a single goal, and the control group received information about community health resources. Dietary intake was assessed via a food frequency questionnaire, physical activity via questionnaire, and A1C and blood lipids via fasting fingerstick sample. Between-group differences for clinical (ie, A1C, blood pressure, and blood lipids), physical activity, and dietary variables were evaluated using Kruskal-Wallis, Mann-Whitney U, analysis of variance, and t tests. From pre- to postintervention, the single-goal group demonstrated significant improvement in systolic blood pressure and intake of servings of fruits, vegetables, and refined grains (all P < .05). The multiple-goal group reported significant reduction in percent energy from total, saturated, monounsaturated, and trans fat intake and significant increase in leisure time walking (all P < .05). A multiple-goal approach over 4 months can improve dietary and physical activity outcomes, while a single-goal approach may facilitate improvement in one behavioral domain. Additional research is needed to evaluate maintenance of the achieved changes. © 2016 The Author(s).

  2. Improved Power Decoupling Scheme for Single-Phase Grid-Connected Differential Inverter with Realistic Mismatch in Storage Capacitances

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yao, Wenli; Wang, Xiongfei; Loh, Poh Chiang


    the intention of this paper to quantify ac and dc imperfections experienced by the differential inverter when storage mismatch occurs. A simple improved scheme is then proposed for raising performance of the differential inverter (or the differential rectifier where desired). Simulation and experimental results...

  3. X Marks the Spot: Creating and Managing a Single Service Point to Improve Customer Service and Maximize Resources (United States)

    Venner, Mary Ann; Keshmiripour, Seti


    This article will describe how merging service points in an academic library is an opportunity to improve customer service and utilize staffing resources more efficiently. Combining service points provides libraries with the ability to create a more positive library experience for patrons by minimizing the ping-pong effect for assistance. The…

  4. Optimizing single irrigation scheme to improve water use efficiency by manipulating winter wheat sink-source relationships in Northern China Plain. (United States)

    Xu, Xuexin; Zhang, Yinghua; Li, Jinpeng; Zhang, Meng; Zhou, Xiaonan; Zhou, Shunli; Wang, Zhimin


    Improving winter wheat grain yield and water use efficiency (WUE) with minimum irrigation is very important for ensuring agricultural and ecological sustainability in the Northern China Plain (NCP). A three-year field experiment was conducted to determine how single irrigation can improve grain yield and WUE by manipulating the "sink-source" relationships. To achieve this, no-irrigation after sowing (W0) as a control, and five single irrigation treatments after sowing (75 mm of each irrigation) were established. They included irrigation at upstanding (WU), irrigation at jointing (WJ), irrigation at booting (WB), irrigation at anthesis (WA) and irrigation at medium milk (WM). Results showed that compared with no-irrigation after sowing (W0), WU, WJ, WB, WA and WM significantly improved mean grain yield by 14.1%, 19.9%, 17.9%, 11.6%, and 7.5%, respectively. WJ achieved the highest grain yield (8653.1 kg ha-1) and WUE (20.3 kg ha-1 mm-1), and WB observed the same level of grain yield and WUE as WJ. In comparison to WU, WJ and WB coordinated pre- and post-anthesis water use while reducing pre-anthesis and total evapotranspiration (ET). They also retained higher soil water content above 180 cm soil layers at anthesis, increased post-anthesis water use, and ultimately increased WUE. WJ and WB optimized population quantity and individual leaf size, delayed leaf senescence, extended grain-filling duration, improved post-anthesis biomass and biomass remobilization (source supply capacity) as well as post-anthesis biomass per unit anthesis leaf area (PostBA-leaf ratio). WJ also optimized the allocation of assimilation, increased the spike partitioning index (SPI, spike biomass/biomass at anthesis) and grain production efficiency (GPE, the ratio of grain number to biomass at anthesis), thus improved mean sink capacity by 28.1%, 5.7%, 21.9%, and 26.7% in comparison to W0, WU, WA and WM, respectively. Compared with WA and WM, WJ and WB also increased sink capacity, post

  5. Multisensory memory for object identity and location

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Erp, J.B.F. van; Philippi, T.G.; Werkhoven, P.J.


    Researchers have reported that audiovisual object presentation improves memory encoding of object identity in comparison to either auditory or visual object presentation. However, multisensory memory effects on retrieval, on object location, and of other multisensory combinations are yet unknown. We

  6. A Single Dose of Beetroot Gel Rich in Nitrate Does Not Improve Performance but Lowers Blood Glucose in Physically Active Individuals


    Vasconcellos, Julia; Henrique Silvestre, Diego; dos Santos Bai?o, Diego; Werneck-de-Castro, Jo?o Pedro; Silveira Alvares, Thiago; Paschoalin, V?nia M. Flosi


    Background. Beetroot consumption has been proposed to improve exercise performance, since the nitrate content of this food is able to stimulate the synthesis of nitric oxide. Objective. The acute effect of 100 g of a beetroot gel containing ~10 mmol of nitrate was tested on the nitric oxide synthesis, on metabolic and biochemical parameters, and on performance in physically active individuals. Methods. Through a double blind, crossover, placebo-controlled study, 25 healthy runners ingested a ...

  7. A gold nanoparticles-based colorimetric test to detect single nucleotide polymorphisms for improvement of personalized therapy of psoriasis (United States)

    Marsella, Alessandra; Valentini, Paola; Tarantino, Paolo; Congedo, Maurizio; Pompa, Pier Paolo


    We report a simple, rapid and low-cost test, based on gold nanoparticles, for the naked-eye colorimetric detection of a signature of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) relevant for the personalized medicine of psoriasis patients. We validated the colorimetric assay on real-world DNA samples from a cohort of 30 psoriasis patients and we compared the results, in double-blind, with those obtained with two state-of-the-art instrumental techniques, namely reverse dot blotting and direct sequencing, finding 100% agreement. We demonstrated high accuracy, sensitivity and specificity of the colorimetric test that can be easily adapted for the genotypization of different SNPs, important for the pharmacogenomics of various diseases, and in other fields, such as food traceability and population structure analysis.

  8. Improving outcomes in microsurgical breast reconstruction: lessons learnt from 406 consecutive DIEP/TRAM flaps performed by a single surgeon. (United States)

    Damen, Tim H C; Morritt, Andrew N; Zhong, Toni; Ahmad, Jamil; Hofer, Stefan O P


    Multiple preoperative, intraoperative and postoperative decisions can influence the outcome of microsurgical breast reconstruction. We have simplified the decision-making process by incorporating a number of algorithms into our microsurgical breast reconstruction practice and critically review our results in this study. Prospectively maintained databases for all microsurgical breast reconstructions performed by a single surgeon over a nine-year period were examined to determine: patient demographics; operative details including flap choice, donor and recipient vessel selection; and, details of intraoperative and early postoperative (406 Consecutive free flap microsurgical breast reconstructions (164 unilateral and 121 bilateral) were performed in 285 patients over the study period. Deep inferior epigastric artery perforator (DIEP) flaps (88%, n=359) were used most commonly followed by muscle-sparing transverse rectus abdominis musculocutaneous (MS-TRAM) flaps (11%, n=44), and fascial-sparing TRAM (FS-TRAM) flaps (0.7%, n=3). One-hundred-seventy-one (48%) DIEP flaps were based on a single perforator while 188 (52%) had multiple perforators. The internal mammary (IM) artery and vein were used as the recipient vessels for 99% (n=403) of flaps. A second venous anastomosis was required for 11.8 percent (n=48) of flaps. Partial flap failure occurred in nine (2.2%) flaps while total flap failure occurred in two flaps (0.5%). Minimum follow-up was three months. Incorporating a number of algorithms into our practice has enabled us to simplify the decision-making processes involved in microsurgical breast reconstruction and to consistently obtain successful surgical outcomes. Copyright © 2013 British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Improving estimates of the number of `fake' leptons and other mis-reconstructed objects in hadron collider events: BoB's your UNCLE (United States)

    Gillam, Thomas P. S.; Lester, Christopher G.


    We consider current and alternative approaches to setting limits on new physics signals having backgrounds from misidentified objects; for example jets misidentified as leptons, b-jets or photons. Many ATLAS and CMS analyses have used a heuristic "matrix method" for estimating the background contribution from such sources. We demonstrate that the matrix method suffers from statistical shortcomings that can adversely affect its ability to set robust limits. A rigorous alternative method is discussed, and is seen to produce fake rate estimates and limits with better qualities, but is found to be too costly to use. Having investigated the nature of the approximations used to derive the matrix method, we propose a third strategy that is seen to marry the speed of the matrix method to the performance and physicality of the more rigorous approach.

  10. Toward improved mechanical, tribological, corrosion and in-vitro bioactivity properties of mixed oxide nanotubes on Ti-6Al-7Nb implant using multi-objective PSO. (United States)

    Rafieerad, A R; Bushroa, A R; Nasiri-Tabrizi, B; Kaboli, S H A; Khanahmadi, S; Amiri, Ahmad; Vadivelu, J; Yusof, F; Basirun, W J; Wasa, K


    Recently, the robust optimization and prediction models have been highly noticed in district of surface engineering and coating techniques to obtain the highest possible output values through least trial and error experiments. Besides, due to necessity of finding the optimum value of dependent variables, the multi-objective metaheuristic models have been proposed to optimize various processes. Herein, oriented mixed oxide nanotubular arrays were grown on Ti-6Al-7Nb (Ti67) implant using physical vapor deposition magnetron sputtering (PVDMS) designed by Taguchi and following electrochemical anodization. The obtained adhesion strength and hardness of Ti67/Nb were modeled by particle swarm optimization (PSO) to predict the outputs performance. According to developed models, multi-objective PSO (MOPSO) run aimed at finding PVDMS inputs to maximize current outputs simultaneously. The provided sputtering parameters were applied as validation experiment and resulted in higher adhesion strength and hardness of interfaced layer with Ti67. The as-deposited Nb layer before and after optimization were anodized in fluoride-base electrolyte for 300min. To crystallize the coatings, the anodically grown mixed oxide TiO 2 -Nb 2 O 5 -Al 2 O 3 nanotubes were annealed at 440°C for 30min. From the FESEM observations, the optimized adhesive Nb interlayer led to further homogeneity of mixed nanotube arrays. As a result of this surface modification, the anodized sample after annealing showed the highest mechanical, tribological, corrosion resistant and in-vitro bioactivity properties, where a thick bone-like apatite layer was formed on the mixed oxide nanotubes surface within 10 days immersion in simulated body fluid (SBF) after applied MOPSO. The novel results of this study can be effective in optimizing a variety of the surface properties of the nanostructured implants. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Overview of Single-Molecule Speckle (SiMS) Microscopy and Its Electroporation-Based Version with Efficient Labeling and Improved Spatiotemporal Resolution (United States)

    Yamashiro, Sawako; Watanabe, Naoki


    Live-cell single-molecule imaging was introduced more than a decade ago, and has provided critical information on remodeling of the actin cytoskeleton, the motion of plasma membrane proteins, and dynamics of molecular motor proteins. Actin remodeling has been the best target for this approach because actin and its associated proteins stop diffusing when assembled, allowing visualization of single-molecules of fluorescently-labeled proteins in a state specific manner. The approach based on this simple principle is called Single-Molecule Speckle (SiMS) microscopy. For instance, spatiotemporal regulation of actin polymerization and lifetime distribution of actin filaments can be monitored directly by tracking actin SiMS. In combination with fluorescently labeled probes of various actin regulators, SiMS microscopy has contributed to clarifying the processes underlying recycling, motion and remodeling of the live-cell actin network. Recently, we introduced an electroporation-based method called eSiMS microscopy, with high efficiency, easiness and improved spatiotemporal precision. In this review, we describe the application of live-cell single-molecule imaging to cellular actin dynamics and discuss the advantages of eSiMS microscopy over previous SiMS microscopy. PMID:28684722

  12. Overview of Single-Molecule Speckle (SiMS Microscopy and Its Electroporation-Based Version with Efficient Labeling and Improved Spatiotemporal Resolution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sawako Yamashiro


    Full Text Available Live-cell single-molecule imaging was introduced more than a decade ago, and has provided critical information on remodeling of the actin cytoskeleton, the motion of plasma membrane proteins, and dynamics of molecular motor proteins. Actin remodeling has been the best target for this approach because actin and its associated proteins stop diffusing when assembled, allowing visualization of single-molecules of fluorescently-labeled proteins in a state specific manner. The approach based on this simple principle is called Single-Molecule Speckle (SiMS microscopy. For instance, spatiotemporal regulation of actin polymerization and lifetime distribution of actin filaments can be monitored directly by tracking actin SiMS. In combination with fluorescently labeled probes of various actin regulators, SiMS microscopy has contributed to clarifying the processes underlying recycling, motion and remodeling of the live-cell actin network. Recently, we introduced an electroporation-based method called eSiMS microscopy, with high efficiency, easiness and improved spatiotemporal precision. In this review, we describe the application of live-cell single-molecule imaging to cellular actin dynamics and discuss the advantages of eSiMS microscopy over previous SiMS microscopy.

  13. Improvements and problems of Bridgman-Stockbarger method for fabrication of TlBr single crystal detectors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kozlov, V.; Andersson, H.; Gostilo, V.; Kemell, M.; Kostamo, P.; Kouznetsov, M.S.; Leskelae, M.; Lipsanen, H.; Lisitsky, I.S.; Shorohov, M.; Sipilae, H.


    TlBr is a promising material for gamma-ray detectors; however, it has crystal quality problems originated from the crystal growth itself and further treatments during detector fabrication. The effect of technological improvements on crystal quality has been studied in this work. Low performance of studied detectors was shown to be associated with residual stress or/and small-angle grain boundaries in these crystals. Several crystals failed as detectors were proved to contain impurities.

  14. Secondary prophylaxis vs. on-demand treatment to improve quality of life in severe adult haemophilia A patients: a prospective study in a single centre. (United States)

    Aznar, J A; García-Dasí, M; Pérez-Alenda, S; Marco, A; Jaca, M; Moret, A; Querol, F


    Retrospective publications show a decrease in the bleeding frequency and an improvement in the quality of life (QoL) in severe adult haemophilia A (SAHA) after switching from the on-demand treatment (DT) to secondary prophylaxis (SP). But there are no prospective studies which demonstrate, using a haemophilia-specific questionnaire, an improvement in the QoL after such treatment change. The main objective of this study is to prospectively compare the QoL and the musculoskeletal assessment after switching from DT to SP in SAHA using the A36 Hemofilia-QoL(®) . As secondary objective, we compare the haemarthrosis frequency and factor VIII consumption in DT and SP during a similar period of time (12 months) after switching. We have designed a prospective study including SAHA who have been under DT and were changed to a protocol, which combines SP (biweekly administration of factor VIII) with individualized physiotherapy programme. Twelve months after switching to SP, the QoL was significantly improved (P = 0·005). Musculoskeletal assessment of pathologic irreversible joints and joints with a reversible alteration was generally improved, although in only a few joints, this improvement was statistically significant. Haemarthrosis was strongly reduced (12·60-1·42, P < 0·001). This prospective study has demonstrated a statistically significant improvement in the QoL after 1 year from switching patients from DT to SP. The musculoskeletal assessment after 1 year was maintained similar or slightly improved. When we compared retrospective DT and prospective SP, haemarthrosis where strongly reduced requiring a slight increase in the consumption of factor VIII concentrates. © 2013 International Society of Blood Transfusion.

  15. Balance training improves postural balance, gait, and functional strength in adolescents with intellectual disabilities: Single-blinded, randomized clinical trial. (United States)

    Lee, Kyeongjin; Lee, Myungmo; Song, Changho


    Adolescents with intellectual disabilities often present with problems of balance and mobility. Balance training is an important component of physical activity interventions, with growing evidence that it can be beneficial for people with intellectual disabilities. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of balance training on postural balance, gait, and functional strength in adolescents with intellectual disabilities. Thirty-two adolescents with intellectual disabilities aged 14-19 years were randomly assigned either to a balance training group (n = 15) or a control group (n = 16). Subjects in the balance training group underwent balance training for 40 min per day, two times a week, for 8 weeks. All subjects were assessed with posture sway and the one-leg stance test for postural balance; the timed up-and-go test and 10-m walk test for gait; and sit to stand test for functional strength. Postural balance and functional strength showed significant improvements in the balance training group (p functional strength significantly improved in the balance training group compared with those in the control group. Balance training for adolescents with intellectual disabilities might be beneficial for improving postural balance and functional strength. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Breaking object correspondence across saccadic eye movements deteriorates object recognition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christian H. Poth


    Full Text Available Visual perception is based on information processing during periods of eye fixations that are interrupted by fast saccadic eye movements. The ability to sample and relate information on task-relevant objects across fixations implies that correspondence between presaccadic and postsaccadic objects is established. Postsaccadic object information usually updates and overwrites information on the corresponding presaccadic object. The presaccadic object representation is then lost. In contrast, the presaccadic object is conserved when object correspondence is broken. This helps transsaccadic memory but it may impose attentional costs on object recognition. Therefore, we investigated how breaking object correspondence across the saccade affects postsaccadic object recognition. In Experiment 1, object correspondence was broken by a brief postsaccadic blank screen. Observers made a saccade to a peripheral object which was displaced during the saccade. This object reappeared either immediately after the saccade or after the blank screen. Within the postsaccadic object, a letter was briefly presented (terminated by a mask. Observers reported displacement direction and letter identity in different blocks. Breaking object correspondence by blanking improved displacement identification but deteriorated postsaccadic letter recognition. In Experiment 2, object correspondence was broken by changing the object’s contrast-polarity. There were no object displacements and observers only reported letter identity. Again, breaking object correspondence deteriorated postsaccadic letter recognition. These findings identify transsaccadic object correspondence as a key determinant of object recognition across the saccade. This is in line with the recent hypothesis that breaking object correspondence results in separate representations of presaccadic and postsaccadic objects which then compete for limited attentional processing resources (Schneider, 2013. Postsaccadic

  17. A single bout of high-intensity interval training improves motor skill retention in individuals with stroke

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nepveu, Jean-Francois; Thiel, Alexander; Tang, Ada


    BACKGROUND: One bout of high-intensity cardiovascular exercise performed immediately after practicing a motor skill promotes changes in the neuroplasticity of the motor cortex and facilitates motor learning in nondisabled individuals. OBJECTIVE: To determine if a bout of exercise performed at high...... a motor task, the exercise group performed 15 minutes of high-intensity interval training while the control group rested. Twenty-four hours after motor practice all participants completed a test of the motor task to assess skill retention. RESULTS: The graded exercise test reduced interhemispheric...... imbalances in GABAA-mediated short-interval intracortical inhibition but changes in other markers of excitability were not statistically significant. The group that performed high-intensity interval training showed a better retention of the motor skill. CONCLUSIONS: The performance of a maximal graded...

  18. Application of a single root-scale model to improve macroscopic modeling of root water uptake: focus on osmotic stress (United States)

    Jorda, Helena; Perelman, Adi; Lazarovitch, Naftali; Vanderborght, Jan


    Root water uptake is a fundamental process in the hydrological cycle and it largely regulates the water balance in the soil vadose zone. Macroscopic stress functions are currently used to estimate the effect of salinity on root water uptake. These functions commonly assume stress to be a function of bulk salinity and of the plant sensitivity to osmotic stress expressed as the salinity at which transpiration is reduced by half or so called tolerance value. However, they fail to integrate additional relevant factors such as atmospheric conditions or root architectural traits. We conducted a comprehensive simulation study on a single root using a 3-D physically-based model that resolves flow and transport to individual root segments and that couples flow in the soil and root system. The effect of salt concentrations on root water uptake was accounted for by including osmotic water potential gradients between the solution at the soil root interface and the root xylem sap in the hydraulic gradient between the soil and root. A large set of factors were studied, namely, potential transpiration rate and dynamics, root length density (RLD), irrigation water quality and irrigation frequency, and leaching fraction. Results were fitted to the macroscopic function developed by van Genuchten and Hoffman (1984) and the dependency of osmotic stress and the fitted macroscopic parameters on the studied factors was evaluated. Osmotic stress was found to be highly dependent on RLD. Low RLDs result in a larger stress to the plant due to high evaporative demand per root length unit. In addition, osmotic stress was positively correlated to potential transpiration rate, and sinusoidal potential transpiration lead to larger stress than when imposed as a constant boundary condition. Macroscopic parameters are usually computed as single values for each crop and used for the entire growing season. However, our study shows that both tolerance value and shape parameter p from the van Genuchten

  19. It IS worth the effort: Patient knowledge of reproductive aspects of inflammatory bowel disease improves dramatically after a single group education session. (United States)

    Mountifield, Réme; Andrews, Jane M; Bampton, Peter


    Individuals with Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) have poor knowledge regarding the implications of disease for fertility and pregnancy. Previous studies suggest that this poor knowledge adversely influences reproductive decision making. To examine the effect of a single group education session on IBD-specific reproductive knowledge in subjects with IBD. People with IBD attending an educational event were invited to complete the CCPKnow questionnaire, testing reproductive knowledge in IBD, before and after an evidenced based presentation on this topic delivered by a Gastroenterologist. Of 248 attendees, 155 participated; 69% female, mean age 40.3years. CCPKnow scores (maximum 17) were low at baseline and increased significantly post education (mean 5.4 pre vs. 14.5 post education; p<0.0001). A large majority (65.1%) of subjects had "poor" (score <8) knowledge at baseline, compared with only 1.9% after education (p<0.0001). Whilst all subareas of knowledge improved after education, the most important improvement was in attitudes toward medication use in pregnancy: 33.5% of subjects indicated at baseline that women should avoid all drugs in pregnancy compared with only 1.2% post education (p<0.0001). A single group-delivered education event focussed on reproductive issues in IBD can dramatically improve patient knowledge. This has the potential to change reproductive behaviour and may reduce voluntary childlessness resulting from misperceptions amongst individuals with IBD. Crown Copyright © 2013. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. Improved Tensor-Based Singular Spectrum Analysis Based on Single Channel Blind Source Separation Algorithm and Its Application to Fault Diagnosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dan Yang


    Full Text Available To solve the problem of multi-fault blind source separation (BSS in the case that the observed signals are under-determined, a novel approach for single channel blind source separation (SCBSS based on the improved tensor-based singular spectrum analysis (TSSA is proposed. As the most natural representation of high-dimensional data, tensor can preserve the intrinsic structure of the data to the maximum extent. Thus, TSSA method can be employed to extract the multi-fault features from the measured single-channel vibration signal. However, SCBSS based on TSSA still has some limitations, mainly including unsatisfactory convergence of TSSA in many cases and the number of source signals is hard to accurately estimate. Therefore, the improved TSSA algorithm based on canonical decomposition and parallel factors (CANDECOMP/PARAFAC weighted optimization, namely CP-WOPT, is proposed in this paper. CP-WOPT algorithm is applied to process the factor matrix using a first-order optimization approach instead of the original least square method in TSSA, so as to improve the convergence of this algorithm. In order to accurately estimate the number of the source signals in BSS, EMD-SVD-BIC (empirical mode decomposition—singular value decomposition—Bayesian information criterion method, instead of the SVD in the conventional TSSA, is introduced. To validate the proposed method, we applied it to the analysis of the numerical simulation signal and the multi-fault rolling bearing signals.

  1. Improvement of lung abnormality detection in computed radiography using multi-objective frequency processing: Evaluation by receiver operating characteristics (ROC) analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tagashira, Hiroyuki; Arakawa, Kenji; Yoshimoto, Masahiro; Mochizuki, Teruhito; Murase, Kenya; Yoshida, Hiroyuki


    Computed radiography (CR) has been shown to have relatively low sensitivity for detection of pulmonary nodules. This poor sensitivity precludes its use as a screening modality despite the low cost, low dose and wide distribution of devices. The purpose of this study was to apply multi-objective frequency processing (MFP) to CR images and to evaluate its usefulness for diagnosing subtle lung abnormalities. Fifty CR images with simulated subtle lung abnormalities were obtained from 50 volunteers. Each image was processed with MFP. We cut chest images. The chest image was divided into two rights and left. A total of 200 half-chest images (100 MFP-processed images and 100 MFP-unprocessed images) were prepared. Five radiologists participated in this study. ROC analyses demonstrated that the detection rate of simulated subtle lung abnormalities on the CR images was significantly better with MFP (Az = 0.8508) than without MFP (Az = 0.7925). The CR images processed with MFP could be useful for diagnosing subtle lung abnormalities. In conclusion, MFP appears to be useful for increasing the sensitivity and specificity in the detection of pulmonary nodules, ground-glass opacity (GGO) and reticular shadow

  2. Retrieval of overviews of systematic reviews in MEDLINE was improved by the development of an objectively derived and validated search strategy. (United States)

    Lunny, Carole; McKenzie, Joanne E; McDonald, Steve


    Locating overviews of systematic reviews is difficult because of an absence of appropriate indexing terms and inconsistent terminology used to describe overviews. Our objective was to develop a validated search strategy to retrieve overviews in MEDLINE. We derived a test set of overviews from the references of two method articles on overviews. Two population sets were used to identify discriminating terms, that is, terms that appear frequently in the test set but infrequently in two population sets of references found in MEDLINE. We used text mining to conduct a frequency analysis of terms appearing in the titles and abstracts. Candidate terms were combined and tested in MEDLINE in various permutations, and the performance of strategies measured using sensitivity and precision. Two search strategies were developed: a sensitivity-maximizing strategy, achieving 93% sensitivity (95% confidence interval [CI]: 87, 96) and 7% precision (95% CI: 6, 8), and a sensitivity-and-precision-maximizing strategy, achieving 66% sensitivity (95% CI: 58, 74) and 21% precision (95% CI: 17, 25). The developed search strategies enable users to more efficiently identify overviews of reviews compared to current strategies. Consistent language in describing overviews would aid in their identification, as would a specific MEDLINE Publication Type. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Evaluation of various cheese whey treatment scenarios in single-chamber microbial electrolysis cells for improved biohydrogen production. (United States)

    Rivera, Isaac; Bakonyi, Péter; Cuautle-Marín, Manuel Alejandro; Buitrón, Germán


    In this study single-chamber microbial electrolysis cells (MECs) were applied to treat cheese whey (CW), an industrial by-product, and recover H 2 gas. Firstly, this substrate was fed directly to the MEC to get the initial feedback about its H 2 generation potential. The results indicated that the direct application of CW requires an adequate pH control to realize bioelectrohydrogenesis and avoid operational failure due to the loss of bioanode activity. In the second part of the study, the effluents of anaerobic (methanogenic) digester and hydrogenogenic (dark fermentative H 2 -producing) reactor utilizing the CW were tested in the MEC process (representing the concept of a two-stage technology). It turned out that the residue of the methanogenic reactor - with its relatively lower carbohydrate- and higher volatile fatty acid contents - was more suitable to produce hydrogen bioelectrochemically. The MEC operated with the dark fermentation effluent, containing a high portion of carbohydrates and low amount of organic acids, produced significant amount of undesired methane simultaneously with H 2 . Overall, the best MEC behavior was attained using the effluent of the methanogenic reactor and therefore, considering a two-stage system, methanogenesis is an advisable pretreatment step for the acidic CW to enhance the H 2 formation in complementary microbial electrohydrogenesis. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Can Air Seat Cushions and Ball Chairs Improved Classroom Behaviors of Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Single Subject Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nader Matin Sadr


    Full Text Available Background: Classroom behaviorsare disturbed in autistic students because of their repetitive, restlessness, and disruptive behaviors. This study aimed to examine the impacts of sitting on a ball, cushion, and/or common chair on classroom behavior of four students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD. Methods: Four children with Autism participated in this single-subject study. Students’ behaviors were video recorded in three phases: Sitting on their common chairs during phase A, air-sit cushioned in phase B, and ball chairs in phase C. Sitting times and on-task/off-task behaviors were quantified by momentary time sampling (every 10 seconds and compared during different phases for important changes. Social validity was taken by the teacher at the end of the research as well. Results: The findings demonstrated increases in on-task and in-seat behaviors in four students when seated on air sit cushioned chairs. Despite rises of ontask behaviors for all students, only two of the students showed enhanced inseat behaviors when seated on therapy balls. Social validity findings indicated that the teacher preferred the use of the balls and air-cushioned chairs for her students. Conclusion: Therapy balls/cushioned chairs for students with ASD may facilitate in-seat and on-task behavior.

  5. Improved healing of transected rabbit Achilles tendon after a single injection of cartilage-derived morphogenetic protein-2. (United States)

    Forslund, Carina; Aspenberg, Per


    Achilles tendon ruptures in humans might be treated more efficiently with the help of a growth factor. Cartilage-derived morphogenetic protein-2 has been shown to induce formation of tendon-like tissue. Cartilage-derived morphogenetic protein-2 has a positive effect on mechanical parameters for tendon healing in a rabbit model with Achilles tendon transection. Controlled laboratory study. The right Achilles tendon of 40 rabbits was transected without tendon suture. Cartilage-derived morphogenetic protein-2 (10 micro g) or vehicle control (acetate buffer) was injected locally 2 hours postoperatively. All tendons were tested biomechanically at 8 and 14 days, and treated tendons were histologically and radiographically evaluated at 56 days. At 14 days, both failure load and stiffness of treated tendons were increased by 35%. The treated tendons had significantly larger callus size at 8 and 14 days. Histologic and radiographic examination showed no signs of ossification in the treated tendons after 56 days. A single injection of cartilage-derived morphogenetic protein-2 led to a stronger and stiffer tendon callus than that in the controls without inducing bone formation. Similar results from a larger animal model would suggest a possible future use of cartilage-derived morphogenetic protein-2 in the treatment of human Achilles tendon ruptures.

  6. Baseline vitamin B12 and folate levels do not predict improvement in depression after a single infusion of ketamine. (United States)

    Lundin, N B; Niciu, M J; Luckenbaugh, D A; Ionescu, D F; Richards, E M; Vande Voort, J L; Brutsche, N E; Machado-Vieira, R; Zarate, C A


    Deficiencies in both vitamin B12 and folate have been associated with depression. Recently, higher baseline vitamin B12 levels were observed in individuals with bipolar depression who responded to the antidepressant ketamine at 7 days post-infusion. This study sought to -replicate this result by correlating peripheral vitamin levels with ketamine's antidepressant efficacy in bipolar depression and major depressive disorder (MDD). Baseline vitamin B12 and folate levels were obtained in 49 inpatients with treatment-resistant MDD and 34 inpatients with treatment-resistant bipolar depression currently experiencing a major depressive episode. All subjects received a single intravenous ketamine infusion. Post-hoc Pearson correlations were performed between baseline vitamin B12 and folate levels, as well as antidepressant response assessed by percent change in Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HDRS) scores from baseline to 230 min, 1 day, and 7 days post-infusion. No significant correlation was observed between baseline vitamin B12 or folate and percent change in HDRS for any of the 3 time points in either MDD or bipolar depression. Ketamine's antidepressant efficacy may occur independently of baseline peripheral vitamin levels. © Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York.

  7. Security analysis with improved design of post-confirmation mechanism for quantum sealed-bid auction with single photons (United States)

    Zhang, Ke-Jia; Kwek, Leong-Chuan; Ma, Chun-Guang; Zhang, Long; Sun, Hong-Wei


    Quantum sealed-bid auction (QSA) has been widely studied in quantum cryptography. For a successful auction, post-confirmation is regarded as an important mechanism to make every bidder verify the identity of the winner after the auctioneer has announced the result. However, since the auctioneer may be dishonest and collude with malicious bidders in practice, some potential loopholes could exist. In this paper, we point out two types of collusion attacks for a particular post-confirmation technique with EPR pairs. And it is not difficult to see that there exists no unconditionally secure post-confirmation mechanism in the existing QSA model, if the dishonest participants have the ability to control multiparticle entanglement. In the view of this, we note that some secure implementation could exist if the participants are supposed to be semi-quantum, i.e., they can only control single photons. Finally, two potential methods to design post-confirmation mechanism are presented in this restricted scenario.

  8. Novel fluid shear-based dissociation device for improved single cell dissociation of spheroids and cell aggregates. (United States)

    Triantafillu, Ursula L; Nix, Jaron N; Kim, Yonghyun


    Biological industries commonly rely on bioreactor systems for the large-scale production of cells. Cell aggregation, clumping, and spheroid morphology of certain suspension cells make their large-scale culture challenging. Growing stem cells as spheroids is indispensable to retain their stemness, but large spheroids (>500 µm diameter) suffer from poor oxygen and nutrient diffusion, ultimately resulting in premature cell death in the centers of the spheroids. Despite this, most large-scale bioprocesses do not have an efficient method for dissociating cells into single cells, but rely on costly enzymatic dissociation techniques. Therefore, we tested a proof-of-concept fluid shear-based mechanical dissociator that was designed to dissociate stem cell spheroids and aggregates. Our prototype was able to dissociate cells while retaining high viability and low levels of apoptosis. The dissociator also did not impact long-term cell growth or spheroid formation. Thus, the dissociator introduced here has the potential to replace traditional dissociation methods. © 2017 American Institute of Chemical Engineers Biotechnol. Prog., 34:293-298, 2018. © 2017 American Institute of Chemical Engineers.

  9. Single photon emission computed tomography procedure improves accuracy of somatostatin receptor scintigraphy in endocrine gastro-entero-pancreatic tumours

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lebtahi, R.; Genin, R.; Rouzet, F.; Bleicner-Perez, S.; Lievre, A.; Scigliano, S.; Vialle, C.; Le Guludec, D.; Cadiot, G.; Sobhani, I.; Mignon, M.


    Somatostatin receptors scintigraphy (SRS) is a sensitive method for the detection of endocrine gastro-entero-pancreatic tumors. The aim of this study was to evaluate the sensitivity of anterior and posterior planar associated to single photon emission computerized tomography (SPECT) compared to anterior and posterior planar associated to additional lateral and oblique views in the detection of abdominal endocrine tumors. One hundred and sixty four patients with endocrine gastro-entero-pancreatic tumors were included in this study. Scintigraphic images were performed after injection of 189 ± 23 MBq of 111 In-Pentetreotide. Abdominal planar images were performed 4 h and 24 hours after injection. Abdominal SPECT was performed at 24 hours. The combination of anterior and posterior abdominal planar images with SPECT using iterative reconstruction detected significantly more tumoral sites compared to multiple planar images (298 versus 280 for the liver, p = 0.01 and 90 versus 88 for coeliac area). In particular liver lesions were better delineated on tomographic slices. The combination of 111 In-Pentetreotide SPECT with anterior and posterior planar images is more sensitive than multiple planar images to detect abdominal endocrine tumors. (author)

  10. Recognition difference and improvement direction of the radiological technologists and patient against medical service in department radiology - Inchon area in the object

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    An, Sung Min; Kim, Sung Chul


    Satisfaction of the patient against the medical service in department of radiology and it evaluated the different recognition of radiological technologist and patient, and investigates it's improvement direction. It sent the reply the above the which is a usual result in question result of the most that, the receipt process it was complicated in the portion which is insufficient. 'The receipt process is complication', 'waiting time is long' and ' don't radiation protection for patient and guardian'. Also these a facts was recognizing patients and radiological technologist all. And the effort of the radiological technologist is necessary with the method which reduces a recognition difference. The periodical medical service satisfaction investigates and must endeavor in reform measure preparation


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Reina Maylín, Hernández Oro


    Full Text Available In this paper, we present the main results of research designed to improve key business processes, using a procedure designed for this purpose, and which includes among its main stages, the analysis of value added by activity, adapting to technology based companies’ productions by one of the water sector project in Cuba. The procedure consistently combines different techniques such as multi-criteria decision analysis for selection of the key processes and analysis of value added by activity to identify key processes to improve and identify opportunities for improvement. The main results are able to identify, classify and relate the processes taking place in the organization, and represent them in a process map, and then determine the key processes for improvement, based on the analysis of value added at each process of each of the activities in it. Derived from the results obtained are proposed and implemented a set of organizational improvements had a positive economic impact for the company under study, allowing a positive conclusion on the feasibility of implementation, flexibility and robustness of the procedure developed in technology-based companies single project productions of the water sector in Cuba to support their business management.

  12. Security and gain improvement of a practical quantum key distribution using a gated single-photon source and probabilistic photon-number resolution

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Horikiri, Tomoyuki; Sasaki, Hideki; Wang, Haibo; Kobayashi, Takayoshi


    We propose a high security quantum key distribution (QKD) scheme utilizing one mode of spontaneous parametric downconversion gated by a photon number resolving detector. This photon number measurement is possible by using single-photon detectors operating at room temperature and optical fibers. By post selection, the multiphoton probability in this scheme can be reduced to lower than that of a scheme using an attenuated coherent light resulting in improvement of security. Furthermore, if distillation protocol (error correction and privacy amplification) is performed, the gain will be increased. Hence a QKD system with higher security and bit rate than the laser-based QKD system can be attained using present available technologies

  13. Fast adaptive OFDM-PON over single fiber loopback transmission using dynamic rate adaptation-based algorithm for channel performance improvement (United States)

    Kartiwa, Iwa; Jung, Sang-Min; Hong, Moon-Ki; Han, Sang-Kook


    In this paper, we propose a novel fast adaptive approach that was applied to an OFDM-PON 20-km single fiber loopback transmission system to improve channel performance in term of stabilized BER below 2 × 10-3 and higher throughput beyond 10 Gb/s. The upstream transmission is performed through light source-seeded modulation using 1-GHz RSOA at the ONU. Experimental results indicated that the dynamic rate adaptation algorithm based on greedy Levin-Campello could be an effective solution to mitigate channel instability and data rate degradation caused by the Rayleigh back scattering effect and inefficient resource subcarrier allocation.

  14. Efficacy of dienogest in improving pain in women with endometriosis: a 12-month single-center experience. (United States)

    Maiorana, A; Incandela, Domenico; Parazzini, F; Alio, W; Mercurio, A; Giambanco, L; Alio, L


    Dienogest has recently been marketed as a medical treatment for endometriosis. Given the recent introduction on the market of Dienogest, little data are available regarding its effectiveness in routine clinical practice. The study is an observational, single-center, cohort study. Eligible was women with a surgical diagnosis of endometriosis dating back Dienogest 2 mg once daily treatment at the time of study entry for no more than 30 days, consecutively observed between September 2013 to September 2014. In accordance with routine practice, women came back for clinical assessment and evaluation of pain after 1 (V1), 3 (V2), and 12 (V3) months. A total of 132 women were enrolled in the study. A total of 21 of the enrolled patients were released from the study during follow-up due to adverse effects. The mean pelvic pain VAS score at baseline was 8.9 (SD 1.3). The corresponding values were 6.7 (SD 3.2) and 5.7 (SD 3.7) for dyspareunia and dyschezia. The mean VAS scores progressively and significantly decreased to 0.9 (SD 1.6) for pelvic pain, 1.4 (SD 2.1) for dyspareunia and 0.2 (SD 0.9) for dyschezia, respectively, 12 months after start of treatment. This study confirms that in routine clinical practice, Dienogest 2 mg is an effective and well-tolerated treatment for endometriosis-related pain in women with endometriosis.

  15. Extraction of fetal ECG signal by an improved method using extended Kalman smoother framework from single channel abdominal ECG signal. (United States)

    Panigrahy, D; Sahu, P K


    This paper proposes a five-stage based methodology to extract the fetal electrocardiogram (FECG) from the single channel abdominal ECG using differential evolution (DE) algorithm, extended Kalman smoother (EKS) and adaptive neuro fuzzy inference system (ANFIS) framework. The heart rate of the fetus can easily be detected after estimation of the fetal ECG signal. The abdominal ECG signal contains fetal ECG signal, maternal ECG component, and noise. To estimate the fetal ECG signal from the abdominal ECG signal, removal of the noise and the maternal ECG component presented in it is necessary. The pre-processing stage is used to remove the noise from the abdominal ECG signal. The EKS framework is used to estimate the maternal ECG signal from the abdominal ECG signal. The optimized parameters of the maternal ECG components are required to develop the state and measurement equation of the EKS framework. These optimized maternal ECG parameters are selected by the differential evolution algorithm. The relationship between the maternal ECG signal and the available maternal ECG component in the abdominal ECG signal is nonlinear. To estimate the actual maternal ECG component present in the abdominal ECG signal and also to recognize this nonlinear relationship the ANFIS is used. Inputs to the ANFIS framework are the output of EKS and the pre-processed abdominal ECG signal. The fetal ECG signal is computed by subtracting the output of ANFIS from the pre-processed abdominal ECG signal. Non-invasive fetal ECG database and set A of 2013 physionet/computing in cardiology challenge database (PCDB) are used for validation of the proposed methodology. The proposed methodology shows a sensitivity of 94.21%, accuracy of 90.66%, and positive predictive value of 96.05% from the non-invasive fetal ECG database. The proposed methodology also shows a sensitivity of 91.47%, accuracy of 84.89%, and positive predictive value of 92.18% from the set A of PCDB.

  16. Single-center open-label randomized study of anemia management improvement in ESRD patients with secondary hyperparathyroidism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bellasi Antonio


    Full Text Available Whether anemia and mineral bone abnormalities (chronic kidney disease–mineral bone disorder [CKD-MBD] are associated still remains to be elucidated. Both anemia and CKD-MBD have been associated with adverse cardiovascular outcome and poor quality of life. However, recent evidence suggests that use of large doses of erythropoietin-stimulating agents (ESAs to correct hemoglobin (Hb may be detrimental in CKD. The Optimal Anemia Treatment in End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD (Optimal ESRD Treatment study will assess whether lowering of parathyroid hormone (PTH is associated with a reduction in ESA consumption. The Optimal ESRD Treatment study is a pilot single-center open-label study with blinded end point (a prospective randomized open blinded end-point [PROBE] design enrolling 50 patients on maintenance dialysis. Eligible patients with intact PTH (iPTH 300-540 pg/mL and Hb 10-11.5 g/dL will be randomized 1:1 to strict PTH control (150-300 pg/mL versus standard care (PTH range 300-540 pg/mL. Available drugs for CKD-MBD and anemia treatment will be managed by the attending physician to maintain the desired levels of PTH (according to study arm allocation and Hb (10-11.5 g/dL. Echocardiographic data for cardiac structure and function as well as arterial stiffness will be assessed at study inception and completion. The Optimal ESRD Treatment study should shed light on the complicated interplay of anemia and CKD-MBD and on the feasibility of clinical trials in this domain. The study results are expected in the spring of 2017.

  17. X-ray pulse preserving single-shot optical cross-correlation method for improved experimental temporal resolution

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Beye, M.; Krupin, O.; Hays, G.; Jong, S. de; Lee, S.; Coffee, R.; Holmes, M. R.; Fry, A. R.; White, W. E.; Bostedt, C.; Schlotter, W. F.; Reid, A. H.; Rupp, D.; Lee, W.-S.; Scherz, A. O.; Chuang, Y.-D.; Cryan, J. P.; Glownia, J. M.; Foehlisch, A.; Durr, H. A.


    We measured the relative arrival time between an optical pulse and a soft x-ray pulse from a free-electron laser. This femtosecond cross-correlation measurement was achieved by observing the change in optical reflectivity induced through the absorption of a fraction of the x-ray pulse. The main x-ray pulse energy remained available for an independent pump-probe experiment where the sample may be opaque to soft x-rays. The method was employed to correct the two-pulse delay data from a canonical pump-probe experiment and demonstrate 130 ± 20 fs (FWHM) temporal resolution. We further analyze possible timing jitter sources and point to future improvements.

  18. Single Crystal Casting with Fluidized Carbon Bed Cooling: A Process Innovation for Quality Improvement and Cost Reduction (United States)

    Hofmeister, M.; Franke, M. M.; Koerner, C.; Singer, R. F.


    Superalloy gas turbine blades are being produced by investment casting and directional solidification. A new process, Fluidized Carbon Bed Cooling (FCBC), has been developed and is now being optimized in a prototype casting unit with 10 kg pouring weight. In early test runs with still rather simple mold cluster geometries, a reduction of the primary dendrite arm spacing of around 40 pct compared to the standard radiation cooling process (HRS) could be demonstrated. The improvement is mainly attributed to higher temperature gradients driving solidification, made possible by a functioning Dynamic Baffle. Compared to earlier development efforts in the literature, contamination of the melt and damage to the equipment are avoided using carbon-based fluidized bed materials and the so-called "counter pressure concept."

  19. Fat-Modified Enteral Formula Improves Feeding Tolerance in Critically Ill Patients: A Multicenter, Single-Blind, Randomized Controlled Trial. (United States)

    Qiu, Chunfang; Chen, Chuanxi; Zhang, Weixing; Kou, Qiuye; Wu, Shengnan; Zhou, Lixin; Liu, Jiyun; Ma, Gang; Chen, Juan; Chen, Minying; Luo, Hua; Zhang, Xiaofei; Lai, Jianbo; Yu, Zhihui; Yu, Xiaochun; Liao, Wei; Guan, Xiangdong; Ouyang, Bin


    Improvement of fat digestion and absorption was supposed to relieve feeding intolerance. This trial aimed to evaluate the effect of a fat-modified enteral formula on feeding tolerance in critically ill patients. This trial was conducted in 7 hospitals in China. In total, 144 intensive care unit (ICU) patients with estimated need of enteral nutrition (EN) for at least 5 days were randomly given fat-modified enteral formula containing medium-chain triglycerides (MCT), carnitine, and taurine (interventional feed group, n = 71) or standard enteral formula (control feed group, n = 73). EN intake, feeding intolerance (diarrhea, vomiting, gastric retention, and abdominal distension) and outcomes (mechanical ventilator-free days of 28 days, length of ICU stay, length of hospital stay, and in-hospital mortality) were collected. Daily calories and protein intake were increased in the interventional feed group compared with the control feed group ( P feeding intolerance was 42.3% in the interventional feed group and 65.7% in the control feed group ( P feeding intolerance was 11.3%, 18.3%, 14.1%, 25.4%, and 26.1% in the interventional feed group and 31.5%, 32.9%, 34.2%, 34.2%, and 30.4% in the control feed group from study days 1-5 ( P = .0083). Incidence of feeding intolerance without abdominal distention was 32.9% in the interventional feed group and 49.3% in the control feed group ( P = .047), while the incidence of abdominal distension was 26.8% in the interventional feed group and 43.8% in the control feed group ( P = .03). No significant differences existed in outcomes between the 2 groups. The fat-modified enteral formula containing MCT, carnitine, and taurine may improve feeding tolerance in critically ill patients.

  20. A daily single dose of a novel modafinil analogue CE-123 improves memory acquisition and memory retrieval. (United States)

    Kristofova, Martina; Aher, Yogesh D; Ilic, Marija; Radoman, Bojana; Kalaba, Predrag; Dragacevic, Vladimir; Aher, Nilima Y; Leban, Johann; Korz, Volker; Zanon, Lisa; Neuhaus, Winfried; Wieder, Marcus; Langer, Thierry; Urban, Ernst; Sitte, Harald H; Hoeger, Harald; Lubec, Gert; Aradska, Jana


    Dopamine reuptake inhibitors have been shown to improve cognitive parameters in various tasks and animal models. We recently reported a series of modafinil analogues, of which the most promising, 5-((benzhydrylsulfinyl)methyl) thiazole (CE-123), was selected for further development. The present study aims to characterize pharmacological properties of CE-123 and to investigate the potential to enhance memory performance in a rat model. In vitro transporter assays were performed in cells expressing human transporters. CE-123 blocked uptake of [3H] dopamine (IC50 = 4.606 μM) while effects on serotonin (SERT) and the norepinephrine transporter (NET) were negligible. Blood-brain barrier and pharmacokinetic studies showed that the compound reached the brain and lower elimination than R-modafinil. The Pro-cognitive effect was evaluated in a spatial hole-board task in male Sprague-Dawley rats and CE-123 enhances memory acquisition and memory retrieval, represented by significantly increased reference memory indices and shortened latency. Since DAT blockers can be considered as indirect dopamine receptor agonists, western blotting was used to quantify protein levels of dopamine receptors D1R, D2R and D5R and DAT in the synaptosomal fraction of hippocampal subregions CA1, CA3 and dentate gyrus (DG). CE-123 administration in rats increased total DAT levels and D1R protein levels were significantly increased in CA1 and CA3 in treated/trained groups. The increase of D5R was observed in DG only. Dopamine receptors, particularly D1R, seem to play a role in mediating CE-123-induced memory enhancement. Dopamine reuptake inhibition by CE-123 may represent a novel and improved stimulant therapeutic for impairments of cognitive functions. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Channels as Objects in Concurrent Object-Oriented Programming

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joana Campos


    Full Text Available There is often a sort of a protocol associated to each class, stating when and how certain methods should be called. Given that this protocol is, if at all, described in the documentation accompanying the class, current mainstream object-oriented languages cannot provide for the verification of client code adherence against the sought class behaviour. We have defined a class-based concurrent object-oriented language that formalises such protocols in the form of usage types. Usage types are attached to class definitions, allowing for the specification of (1 the available methods, (2 the tests clients must perform on the result of methods, and (3 the object status - linear or shared - all of which depend on the object's state. Our work extends the recent approach on modular session types by eliminating channel operations, and defining the method call as the single communication primitive in both sequential and concurrent settings. In contrast to previous works, we define a single category for objects, instead of distinct categories for linear and for shared objects, and let linear objects evolve into shared ones. We introduce a standard sync qualifier to prevent thread interference in certain operations on shared objects. We formalise the language syntax, the operational semantics, and a type system that enforces by static typing that methods are called only when available, and by a single client if so specified in the usage type. We illustrate the language via a complete example.

  2. Excision of reprogramming transgenes improves the differentiation potential of iPS cells generated with a single excisable vector. (United States)

    Sommer, Cesar A; Sommer, Andreia Gianotti; Longmire, Tyler A; Christodoulou, Constantina; Thomas, Dolly D; Gostissa, Monica; Alt, Fred W; Murphy, George J; Kotton, Darrell N; Mostoslavsky, Gustavo


    The residual presence of integrated transgenes following the derivation of induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells is highly undesirable. Here we demonstrate efficient derivation of iPS cells free of exogenous reprogramming transgenes using an excisable polycistronic lentiviral vector. A novel version of this vector containing a reporter fluorochrome allows direct visualization of vector excision in living iPS cells in real time. We find that removal of the reprogramming vector markedly improves the developmental potential of iPS cells and significantly augments their capacity to undergo directed differentiation in vitro. We further propose that methods to efficiently excise reprogramming transgenes with minimal culture passaging, such as those demonstrated here, are critical since we find that iPS cells may acquire chromosomal abnormalities, such as trisomy of chromosome 8, similar to embryonic stem cells after expansion in culture. Our findings illustrate an efficient method for the generation of transgene-free iPS cells and emphasize the potential beneficial effects that may result from elimination of integrated reprogramming factors. In addition, our results underscore the consequences of long-term culture that will need to be taken into account for the clinical application of iPS cells.

  3. May intraperitoneal irrigation with Betadine improve cesarean delivery outcomes? Results of a 6 years' single centre experience. (United States)

    Marino, Riccardo; Capriglione, Stella; Morosetti, Giulia; Di Angelo Antonio, Silvia; Miranda, Andrea; Pazzola, Marta; Lopez, Salvatore; Patrizi, Lodovico; Angioli, Roberto; Stella, Paolo


    Cesarean presents increased risk of adverse outcomes, such as endometritis, bacteremia, peritonitis, and maternal fever. This retrospective study aims to evaluate, for the first time in Literature, the effects Betadine washing versus normal saline washing after uterine closure in women undergoing cesarean delivery (CD) at ≥36 gestational weeks. Of the 2080 patients identified retrospectively for the analysis at Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology of San Camillo Hospital of Rome, 1042 were assigned to "Betadine group" and 1038 to "No Betadine group". There were no differences noted for maternal and obstetric characteristics. The outcomes of the present study were to evaluate the incidence of postoperative infections or fever; the reduction of blood white cells among preoperative and postoperative exams; mean and median time of intestinal recanalization, of postoperative ambulation and of 24-h post-CD pain, evaluated using VAS scale. Betadine group patients reported a statistically significant lower white cells increment, a lower mean time to ambulation and intestinal recanalization after CD and a lower 24-h post-CD pain and infections. Betadine intraperitoneal irrigation during CD seems to improve postoperative CD outcomes and patients' quality of life.

  4. Improvement of recovery parameters using patient-controlled epidural analgesia after oncological surgery. A prospective, randomized single center study* (United States)

    Zgâia, Armeana Olimpia; Lisencu, Cosmin Ioan; Rogobete, Alexandru; Vlad, Cătălin; Achimaş-Cadariu, Patriciu; Lazăr, Gabriel; Muntean, Maximilian; Ignat, Florin; Ormindean, Vlad; Irimie, Alexandru


    Purpose: The aim of this study was to compare patient-controlled epidural analgesia (PCEA) versus conventional opioid intravenous (IV) infusion after gastrointestinal cancer surgery regarding several post-surgery parameters of recovery. Methods: One hundred and one patients were prospectively randomized to receive either thoracic/lumbar PCEA (PCEA group) or the standard analgesia technique used in our hospital, conventional IV infusion of morphine (IVMO group) after gastrointestinal cancer surgery. Pain intensity, time of mobilization and bowel function recovery were analyzed post-surgery. We also evaluated postoperative complications and length of Postoperative-Intermediate Intensive Care Unit (PI-ICU) stay and hospital stay. Results: Pain intensity was significantly less in the PCEA group in comparison with the IVMO Group at awakening 2, 8, 24, 30 and 48 hours after surgery (p apparition of first stool were significantly faster (1.74 versus 2.26 days, 3.06 versus 3.78 days, 2.1 versus 3.14 days and 3.73 versus 5.28 days, respectively) in the PCEA group than in the IVMO group (p pain control, improves postoperative recovery after gastrointestinal cancer surgery compared with conventional intravenous morphine infusion. Therefore, it is more acceptable than conventional pain management. PMID:28913495

  5. Improvement of recovery parameters using patient-controlled epidural analgesia after oncological surgery. A prospective, randomized single center study. (United States)

    Zgâia, Armeana Olimpia; Lisencu, Cosmin Ioan; Rogobete, Alexandru; Vlad, Cătălin; Achimaş-Cadariu, Patriciu; Lazăr, Gabriel; Muntean, Maximilian; Ignat, Florin; Ormindean, Vlad; Irimie, Alexandru


    The aim of this study was to compare patient-controlled epidural analgesia (PCEA) versus conventional opioid intravenous (IV) infusion after gastrointestinal cancer surgery regarding several post-surgery parameters of recovery. One hundred and one patients were prospectively randomized to receive either thoracic/lumbar PCEA (PCEA group) or the standard analgesia technique used in our hospital, conventional IV infusion of morphine (IVMO group) after gastrointestinal cancer surgery. Pain intensity, time of mobilization and bowel function recovery were analyzed post-surgery. We also evaluated postoperative complications and length of Postoperative-Intermediate Intensive Care Unit (PI-ICU) stay and hospital stay. Pain intensity was significantly less in the PCEA group in comparison with the IVMO Group at awakening 2, 8, 24, 30 and 48 hours after surgery (p apparition of first stool were significantly faster (1.74 versus 2.26 days, 3.06 versus 3.78 days, 2.1 versus 3.14 days and 3.73 versus 5.28 days, respectively) in the PCEA group than in the IVMO group (p pain control, improves postoperative recovery after gastrointestinal cancer surgery compared with conventional intravenous morphine infusion. Therefore, it is more acceptable than conventional pain management.

  6. Pulsed irradiation improves target selectivity of infrared laser-evoked gene operator for single-cell gene induction in the nematode C. elegans. (United States)

    Suzuki, Motoshi; Toyoda, Naoya; Takagi, Shin


    Methods for turning on/off gene expression at the experimenter's discretion would be useful for various biological studies. Recently, we reported on a novel microscope system utilizing an infrared laser-evoked gene operator (IR-LEGO) designed for inducing heat shock response efficiently in targeted single cells in living organisms without cell damage, thereby driving expression of a transgene under the control of a heat shock promoter. Although the original IR-LEGO can be successfully used for gene induction, several limitations hinder its wider application. Here, using the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) as a subject, we have made improvements in IR-LEGO. For better spatial control of heating, a pulsed irradiation method using an optical chopper was introduced. As a result, single cells of C. elegans embryos as early as the 2-cell stage and single neurons in ganglia can be induced to express genes selectively. In addition, the introduction of site-specific recombination systems to IR-LEGO enables the induction of gene expression controlled by constitutive and cell type-specific promoters. The strategies adopted here will be useful for future applications of IR-LEGO to other organisms.

  7. Does reading a single passage of literary fiction really improve theory of mind? An attempt at replication. (United States)

    Panero, Maria Eugenia; Weisberg, Deena Skolnick; Black, Jessica; Goldstein, Thalia R; Barnes, Jennifer L; Brownell, Hiram; Winner, Ellen


    [Correction Notice: An Erratum for this article was reported in Vol 111(5) of Journal of Personality and Social Psychology (see record 2016-50315-003). In the article, due to an error in stimulus construction, four items (three authors, one foil) were omitted from the ART presented to all participants tested by Research Group 1. These omissions do not undermine the results in the primary analyses, which all included ART and ART Condition (as covariates). Any variation across research groups, including this difference in reading exposure measurement, is accounted for in the multilevel analyses. Therefore, the Table 2 title should appear as Reading the Mind in the Eyes Test (RMET) Scores by Condition and Overall Unadjusted Means for the Current Study and Kidd and Castano (2013), as Well as the Zero-Order Pearson's Correlations Between RMET and ART Scores Overall and by Condition. The ART data columns should be deleted, and the table note should begin as follows: RMET scores were transformed to correct for skew prior to correlational analyses. The section title above the Discussion section should appear as Comparison of Our RMET Scores to Kidd and Castano Data, with the first two sentences appearing as follows: To determine whether the responses in our sample were similar to what Kidd and Castano (2013) found, we compared our mean performance on the RMET to theirs. Our grand mean (26.28) was significantly higher than theirs (25.18), t (1=, 374) = 3.71, p social world and invites us into the minds of characters. This has led various researchers to suggest that reading fiction improves our understanding of others' cognitive and emotional states. Kidd and Castano (2013) received a great deal of attention by providing support for this claim. Their article reported that reading segments of literary fiction (but not popular fiction or nonfiction) immediately and significantly improved performance on the Reading the Mind in the Eyes Test (RMET), an advanced theory

  8. On-site detection of Phytophthora spp.—single-stranded target DNA as the limiting factor to improve on-chip hybridization

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schwenkbier, Lydia; Pollok, Sibyll; Popp, Jürgen; Weber, Karina; König, Stephan; Wagner, Stefan; Werres, Sabine; Weber, Jörg; Hentschel, Martin


    We report on a lab-on-a-chip approach for on-site detection of Phytophthora species that allows visual signal readout. The results demonstrate the significance of single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) generation in terms of improving the intensity of the hybridization signal and to improve the reliability of the method. Conventional PCR with subsequent heat denaturation, sodium hydroxide-based denaturation, lambda exonuclease digestion and two asymmetric PCR methods were investigated for the species P. fragariae, P. kernoviae, and P. ramorum. The positioning of the capture probe within the amplified yeast GTP-binding protein (YPT1) target DNA was also of interest because it significantly influences the intensity of the signal. Statistical tests were used to validate the impact of the ssDNA generation methods and the capture-target probe position. The single-stranded target DNA generated by Linear-After-The-Exponential PCR (LATE-PCR) was found to produce signal intensities comparable to post-PCR exonuclease treatment. The LATE-PCR is the best method for the on-site detection of Phytophthora because the enzymatic digestion after PCR is more laborious and time-consuming. (author)

  9. Improving the Sound Pressure Level of Two-Dimensional Audio Actuators by Coating Single-Walled Carbon Nanotubes on Piezoelectric Films. (United States)

    Um, Keehong


    As devices for amplifying or transforming electronic signals into audible signals through electromechanical operations, acoustic actuators in the form of loudspeakers are usually solid structures in three dimensional space. Recently there has been increasing demand for mobile electronic devices, such as mobile phones, to become smaller, thinner, and lighter. In contrast to a three dimensional audio system with magnets, we have invented a new type of flexible two dimensional device by utilizing the reverse piezoelectric effect in certain piezoelectric materials. Crystalline piezoelectric materials show electromechanical interaction between the mechanical state and the electrically-charged state. The piezoelectric effect is a reversible process in that materials exhibiting the direct piezoelectric effect (the internal generation of electrical charge resulting from an applied mechanical force) also exhibit the reverse piezoelectric effect (the internal generation of a mechanical strain resulting from an applied electrical field). We have adopted the plasma surface treatment in order to put coating materials on the surface of piezoelectric film. We compared two kinds of coating material, indium tin oxide and single-walled carbon nanotube, and found that single-walled carbon nanotube shows better performance. The results showed improvement of output power in a wider range of operating frequency; for the surface resistance of 0.5 kΩ/square, the single-walled CNT shows the range of operating frequency to be 0.75-17.5 kHz, but ITO shows 2.5-13.4 kHz. For the surface resistance of 1 kΩ/square, single-walled CNT shows the range of operating frequency to be 0.81-17 kHz, but ITO shows it cannot generate audible sound.

  10. Aggressive clinical approach to obesity improves metabolic and clinical outcomes and can prevent bariatric surgery: a single center experience. (United States)

    Cadegiani, Flavio A; Diniz, Gustavo C; Alves, Gabriella


    The number of bariatric procedures has exponentially increased in the past decade, as a result of the lack of successful clinical weight-loss interventions. The main reasons for the failure of clinical obesity management are: (1) anti-obesity medications are administered as monotherapies (or pre-combined drugs); (2) lack of combination between pharmacotherapy and non-pharmacological modalities; (3) short duration of pharmacotherapy for obesity; (4) lack of weight-loss maintenance strategies; (5) misunderstanding of the complex pathophysiology of obesity; and (6) underprescription of anti-obesity medications. We developed a protocol that can potentially overcome the drawbacks that may lead to the failure of clinical therapy for obesity. The aim of this study is therefore to report the clinical and metabolic effects of our proposed obesity-management protocol over a 2-year period, and to determine whether this more intensive approach to obesity management is feasible and a possible alternative to bariatric surgery in patients with moderate-to-severe obesity. This retrospective study involved 43 patients in whom bariatric surgery was indicated. Patients underwent an intensive anti-obesity protocol that included pharmacotherapy with multiple drugs; intense surveillance with monthly body analysis by air-displacement plethysmography, electrical bioimpedance, and 3D body scans; weekly psychotherapy; diet planning with a dietician every 2 months; and exercises at least 3 times a week with exercises prescribed by a personal trainer at least once a month. Body weight (BW), total weight excess (TWE), obesity class, body mass index, fat weight, muscle weight, waist circumference, and visceral fat were analyzed. Markers of lipid and glucose metabolism, liver function, and inflammation were also evaluated. Therapeutic success was defined as >20% BW loss or >50% decrease in TWE after 1 year. Significant improvements were observed in all clinical and metabolic parameters. Thirty

  11. Mono- and diglycerides improve lutein absorption in healthy adults: a randomised, double-blind, cross-over, single-dose study. (United States)

    Marriage, Barbara J; Williams, Jennifer A; Choe, Yong S; Maki, Kevin C; Vurma, Mustafa; DeMichele, Stephen J


    With the association between increased carotenoid intake and lower risk of chronic diseases, the absorption of lutein from the diet becomes an important factor in its delivery and physiological action. The primary objective of this study was to gain an understanding of how a new formulation technology (mixture of mono- and diglycerides (MDG)), affected lutein absorption. Subjects (n 24) were randomised in a cross-over, double-blind study to receive a single dose of 6 mg lutein (FloraGLO 20 %) provided as capsules containing either high-oleic safflower (SAF) oil or a MDG oil. Subjects receiving a single dose of lutein in MDG showed a significantly greater change from baseline (0 h) to 4, 6, 8, 12, 24, 48 and 336 h (Plutein at 48 and 336 h (Plutein in SAF. Analysis of the 48 h absorption kinetics of lutein showed that the time to peak level of lutein (12 h) was the same for SAF and MDG groups, but the change in plasma lutein at 12 and 48 h were 129 and 320 % higher, respectively, for MDG compared with SAF. This difference continued as the adjusted AUC 0-48 and 0-336 h for the MDG group was 232 and 900 % higher, respectively, v. SAF. The study data show that by changing the lipid that is combined with a lutein supplement results in significant increases in lutein absorption in healthy adults.

  12. Does unilateral single-event multilevel surgery improve gait in children with spastic hemiplegia? A retrospective analysis of a long-term follow-up. (United States)

    Schranz, Christian; Kruse, Annika; Kraus, Tanja; Steinwender, Gerhardt; Svehlik, Martin


    Single event multilevel surgery (SEMLS) has become a standard intervention for children with cerebral palsy (CP). SEMLS proved to improve the gait in bilateral spastic cerebral palsy and those improvements can be maintained in the long term. However there is no evidence on the long-term outcome of unilateral SEMLS in children with unilateral spastic cerebral palsy. The gait analyses and clinical data of 14 children (9 male/5 female, mean age 12.1) with unilateral CP (6 children Gross Motor Function Classification System Scale level I and 8 children level II) were retrospectively reviewed at four time-points: preoperatively, 1year, 3-5 years and approximately 10 years after unilateral SEMLS. The Gait Profile Score (GPS) of the affected leg was used as a main and the number of fine tuning procedures as well as complications rate (Clavien-Dindo classification) as secondary outcome measures. The gait improved postoperatively and the GPS of the affected leg significantly declined by 3.73° which is well above the minimal clinical important difference of 1.6°. No deterioration of GPS occurred throughout the follow-up period. Therefore the postoperative improvement was maintained long-term. However, additional fine-tuning procedures had to be performed during the follow-up in 5 children and three complications occurred (one level II and two level III). The results indicate that children with unilateral cerebral palsy benefit from unilateral SEMLS and maintain gait improvements long-term. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. A single session of perturbation-based gait training with the A-TPAD improves dynamic stability in healthy young subjects. (United States)

    Martelli, Dario; Kang, Jiyeon; Agrawal, Sunil K


    Gait and balance disorders are among the most common causes of falls in older adults. Most falls occur as a result of unexpected hazards while walking. In order to improve the effectiveness of current fall-prevention programs, new balance training paradigms aim to strengthen the control of the compensatory responses required after external perturbations. The aim of this study was to analyze the adaptions of reactive and proactive strategies to control stability after repeated exposures to waist-pull perturbations delivered while walking. Eight healthy young subjects participated in a single training session with the Active Tethered Pelvic assisted Device (A-TPAD). Participants were exposed to repeated multi-directional perturbations of increasing intensity. The Antero-Posterior (AP) and Medio-Lateral (ML) Base of Support (BoS) and Margin of Stability (MoS) during the response to diagonal perturbations were compared before and after the training. Results showed that participants adapted both the reactive and proactive strategies to control walking balance by significantly increasing their pre- and post-perturbation stability. The changes were principally accounted for by an increment of the AP BoS and MoS and a reduction of ML BoS. This improved their ability to react to a diagonal perturbation. We envision that this system can be used to develop a perturbation-based gait training aimed at improving balance and control of stability during walking, thus reducing fall risk.

  14. EC nuclear: toward the single market 1993

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brill, L.V.


    The setting-up of a single market has long been an objective (Euratom Treaty). One of the Commission's (CEC) concerns will be to ensure that safety requirements are met in the worldwide trend in standardization of components. Cost advantages (manufacture, operation and maintenance) and improved safety are gained from standardization, and are important in a slack market

  15. Improved Objective Measurements for Speech Quality Testing (United States)


    July 1976. [1.16] N. S. Jayant, ’Digital Coding of Speech Waveforms: PCM, DPCM , and DM Quantizers,’ Proceedings of IEEE , May 1974. [1.17] N_ S. Jayant...Paeb and T. H. Glisson, ’Minimum Mean-Squared-Error Quantization in Speech PCM and DPCM ,’ IEEE Trans. on Comm., April 1972. [1.20] T. P. Barnwell, 11

  16. Implementation of object-oriented GIS data model with topological relations between spatial objects (United States)

    Chen, Youliang; Wang, Zhaoru; Chen, Zhicheng


    Traditional GIS (Geographical Information System) data models are focused on the description of the data organizational structure and constraints from single aspect, which are the absence or little relevance of the hierarchy and connotation of data objects. These data models do not match the natural concept of humans about geographical spatial data and also failed to fully consider the spatial relationships and arithmetic operations with the relationship between geographic objects. Object-oriented technology mimics the human way of thinking as much as possible, it appears to overcome the shortcomings of traditional software design methods and improve the stability and reusability of the software systems. Based on the existing GIS data model, this paper introduces the basic idea of object-oriented GIS data model combined the object-oriented methods and the vectorial expression of spatial entities, and describes the definition and implementation of the object-oriented GIS data model. Furthermore, the topological operations between spatial objects have been defined in the paper for the importance of topological relationships among spatial relationships. The topological operations are directly defined in geometry classes by means of methods, and they include Touch, Disjoint, Cross, Contains, Overlaps, and Intersects and so on.

  17. Improvement of the fracture toughness of hydroxyapatite (HAp) by incorporation of carboxyl functionalized single walled carbon nanotubes (CfSWCNTs) and nylon. (United States)

    Khanal, S P; Mahfuz, H; Rondinone, A J; Leventouri, Th


    The potential of improving the fracture toughness of synthetic hydroxyapatite (HAp) by incorporating carboxyl functionalized single walled carbon nanotubes (CfSWCNTs) and polymerized ε-caprolactam (nylon) was studied. A series of HAp samples with CfSWCNTs concentrations varying from 0 to 1.5 wt.%, without, and with nylon addition was prepared. X-ray diffraction (XRD), Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), and Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM) were used to characterize the samples. The three point bending test was applied to measure the fracture toughness of the composites. A reproducible value of 3.6±0.3 MPa.√m was found for samples containing 1 wt.% CfSWCNTs and nylon. This value is in the range of the cortical bone fracture toughness. Increase of the CfSWCNTs content results to decrease of the fracture toughness, and formation of secondary phases. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Performance Improvement of a Portable Electric Generator Using an Optimized Bio-Fuel Ratio in a Single Cylinder Two-Stroke Engine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yamada Hiroaki


    Full Text Available The performance of an electrical generator using bio-fuel and gasoline blends of different composition as fuel in a single cylinder engine is presented. The effect of an optimized blend ratio of bio-fuel with gasoline on engine performance improvement and thereby on the electrical generator output is studied. Bio-fuels such as ethanol, butanol and methanol are blended with gasoline in different proportions and evaluated for performance. The effects of different bio-fuel/gasoline blending ratios are compared experimentally with that of the gasoline alone using the output power developed by the electric generator as the evaluation parameter. With a composition of 10% ethanol–gasoline, the engine performance is increased up to 6% and with a blending ratio of 20% butanol–gasoline the performance is increased up to 8% compared to the use of 100% gasoline. The investigations are performed on a portable generator used in palm tree harvesting applications.

  19. Improving the optical efficiency and concentration of a single-plate quantum dot solar concentrator using near infra-red emitting quantum dots

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kennedy, M.; McCormack, S.J.; Doran, J.; Norton, B. [Dublin Energy Lab., Dublin Institute of Technology, Focas Institute, DIT - Kevin Street, Dublin 8, Dublin (Ireland)


    Low luminescent quantum yields and large overlap between quantum dot (QD) emission and absorption spectra of present commercially-available visible-emitting QDs have led to low optical efficiencies for single-plate quantum dot solar concentrators (QDSCs). It is shown that using near infra-red (NIR) emitting QDs, re-absorption of QD emitted photons can be reduced greatly, thereby diminishing escape cone losses thus improving optical efficiencies and concentration ratios. Using Monte-Carlo ray-trace modelling, escape cone losses are quantified for different types of QD. A minimum 25% escape cone loss would be expected for a plate with refractive index of 1.5 containing QDs with no spectral overlap. It is shown that escape cone losses account for {proportional_to}57% of incident photons absorbed in QDSCs containing commercially-available visible-emitting QDs. (author)

  20. Influence of Pressure Build-Up Time of Compression Chamber on Improving the Operation Frequency of a Single-Piston Hydraulic Free-Piston Engine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hai-bo Xie


    Full Text Available A single-piston hydraulic free-piston engine with a two-cylinder four-stroke diesel engine as its driver is introduced. It takes the free-piston assembly a certain time to move after the pressure in the compression chamber starts to increase. The time difference between the pressure increasing and the piston starting to move is defined as the pressure build-up time. The characteristics of the pressure build-up time and its influence on the performance of the free-piston engine are introduced and analyzed. Based on the basic law of dynamics of the free-piston assembly, the parameters which influence the pressure build-up time are analyzed. And then improvement and optimization are proposed to shorten the pressure build-up time.

  1. Strategies to improve performance od SW-SAGD (Single Well-Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage); Estrategias para melhor desempenho do SW-SAGD

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Moreira, Richard Douglas Ribeiro [Norse Energy do Brasil S/A, Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil); Trevisan, Osvair Vidal [Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP), SP (Brazil)


    The present work presents an extensive numerical study, using a commercial reservoir simulator, on the recovery of heavy oil by steam injection assisted by gravity drainage in single horizontal wells. The goal is to study several strategies to improve performance of the Single Well - Steam Assisted Drainage Gravity (SW-SAGD), a new but promising thermal recovery technique aimed at exploitation of heavy oils. The strategies are basically made up of two measures: cyclic steam injection prior to the main injection-production process; and well bore splitting into injection and production zones by packer settings. The measures are scrutinized when used separately or together. Cyclic injection is varied according to cycle duration. Comparisons are made between the performance of oil recovery for the developed strategies and the performance of the traditional dual well SAGD technique with similar operating parameters and field conditions. The results point out the best strategy regarding key parameters such as the oil recovery factor and the steam oil ratio. Results were also verified for variations of rock and fluid properties in the range of a typical heavy oil reservoir. As a result, a new strategy for the SW-SAGD process is presented, providing oil recovery, which is higher than that yielded by the equivalent DW-SAGD. (author)

  2. Improved metabolic control in tetrahydrobiopterin (BH4), responsive phenylketonuria with sapropterin administered in two divided doses vs. a single daily dose. (United States)

    Kör, Deniz; Yılmaz, Berna Şeker; Bulut, Fatma Derya; Ceylaner, Serdar; Mungan, Neslihan Önenli


    Phenylketonuria (PKU) often requires a lifelong phenylalanine (Phe)-restricted diet. Introduction of 6R-tetrahydrobiopterin (BH4) has made a huge difference in the diets of patients with PKU. BH4 is the co-factor of the enzyme phenylalanine hydroxylase (PAH) and improves PAH activity and, thus, Phe tolerance in the diet. A limited number of published studies suggest a pharmacodynamic profile of BH4 more suitable to be administered in divided daily doses. After a 72-h BH4 loading test, sapropterin was initiated in 50 responsive patients. This case-control study was conducted by administering the same daily dose of sapropterin in group 1 (n=24) as a customary single dose or in two divided doses in group 2 (n=26) over 1 year. Mean daily consumption of Phe increased significantly after the first year of BH4 treatment in group 2 compared to group 1 (p<0.05). At the end of the first year of treatment with BH4, another dramatic difference observed between the two groups was the ability to transition to a Phe-free diet. Eight patients from group 2 and two from group 1 could quit dietary restriction. When given in two divided daily doses, BH4 was more efficacious than a single daily dose in increasing daily Phe consumption, Phe tolerance and the ability to transition to a Phe-unrestricted diet at the end of the first year of treatment.

  3. Effect of a single-session meditation training to reduce stress and improve quality of life among health care professionals: a "dose-ranging" feasibility study. (United States)

    Prasad, Kavita; Wahner-Roedler, Dietlind L; Cha, Stephen S; Sood, Amit


    The primary aim of the study was to assess the feasibility of incorporating a single-session meditation-training program into the daily activities of healthy employees of a tertiary-care academic medical center. The study also assessed the most preferred duration of meditation and the effect of the meditation program on perceived stress, anxiety, and overall quality of life (QOL). Seventeen healthy clinic employees were recruited for this study. After an initial group instruction session covering basic information about meditation, Paced Breathing Meditation (PBM) was taught to the participants. Participants were instructed to self-practice meditation with the help of a DVD daily for a total of 4 weeks. The DVD had three different programs of 5, 15, and 30 minutes with a menu option to choose one of the programs. (1) Patient diary, (2) Perceived Stress Scale (PSS), (3) Linear Analogue Self-Assessment (LASA), (4) Smith Anxiety Scale (SAS). Primary outcome measures were compared using the paired t-test. All participants were female; median age was 48 years (range 33-60 y). The 5-minute meditation session was practiced by 14 participants a total of 137 times during the 4-week trial period, the 15-minute session by 16 participants a total of 223 times, and the 30-minute session by 13 participants 71 times. The median number of days practiced was 25 (range 10-28 d); the average total time practiced was 394 minutes (range 55-850 min). After 4 weeks of practice, the scores of the following instruments improved significantly from baseline: PSS (P meditation in a single training session to health care employees. The study shows that 15 minutes once or twice a day is the most feasible duration of meditation practice. The study also provides promising preliminary efficacy data of this program for improving stress, anxiety, and QOL.

  4. DOLIB: Distributed Object Library

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    D' Azevedo, E.F.


    This report describes the use and implementation of DOLIB (Distributed Object Library), a library of routines that emulates global or virtual shared memory on Intel multiprocessor systems. Access to a distributed global array is through explicit calls to gather and scatter. Advantages of using DOLIB include: dynamic allocation and freeing of huge (gigabyte) distributed arrays, both C and FORTRAN callable interfaces, and the ability to mix shared-memory and message-passing programming models for ease of use and optimal performance. DOLIB is independent of language and compiler extensions and requires no special operating system support. DOLIB also supports automatic caching of read-only data for high performance. The virtual shared memory support provided in DOLIB is well suited for implementing Lagrangian particle tracking techniques. We have also used DOLIB to create DONIO (Distributed Object Network I/O Library), which obtains over a 10-fold improvement in disk I/O performance on the Intel Paragon.

  5. DOLIB: Distributed Object Library

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    D`Azevedo, E.F.; Romine, C.H.


    This report describes the use and implementation of DOLIB (Distributed Object Library), a library of routines that emulates global or virtual shared memory on Intel multiprocessor systems. Access to a distributed global array is through explicit calls to gather and scatter. Advantages of using DOLIB include: dynamic allocation and freeing of huge (gigabyte) distributed arrays, both C and FORTRAN callable interfaces, and the ability to mix shared-memory and message-passing programming models for ease of use and optimal performance. DOLIB is independent of language and compiler extensions and requires no special operating system support. DOLIB also supports automatic caching of read-only data for high performance. The virtual shared memory support provided in DOLIB is well suited for implementing Lagrangian particle tracking techniques. We have also used DOLIB to create DONIO (Distributed Object Network I/O Library), which obtains over a 10-fold improvement in disk I/O performance on the Intel Paragon.

  6. Optical tissue clearing improves usability of optical coherence tomography (OCT) for high-throughput analysis of the internal structure and 3D morphology of small biological objects such as vertebrate embryos (United States)

    Thrane, Lars; Jørgensen, Thomas M.; Männer, Jörg


    Developmental biology studies frequently require rapid analysis of the morphology of a large number of embryos (highthroughput analysis). Conventional microscopic analysis is time-consuming and, therefore, is not well suited for highthroughput analysis. OCT facilitates rapid generation of optical sections through small biological objects at high resolutions. However, due to light scattering within biological tissues, the quality of OCT images drops significantly with increasing penetration depth of the light beam. We show that optical clearing of fixed embryonic organs with methyl benzoate can significantly reduce the light scattering and, thereby, improves the usability of OCT for high-throughput analysis of embryonic morphology.

  7. Quasi-objects, Cult Objects and Fashion Objects

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Bjørn Schiermer


    This article attempts to rehabilitate the concept of fetishism and to contribute to the debate on the social role of objects as well as to fashion theory. Extrapolating from Michel Serres’ theory of the quasi-objects, I distinguish two phenomenologies possessing almost opposite characteristics....... These two phenomenologies are, so I argue, essential to quasi-object theory, yet largely ignored by Serres’ sociological interpreters. They correspond with the two different theories of fetishism found in Marx and Durkheim, respectively. In the second half of the article, I introduce the fashion object...... as a unique opportunity for studying the interchange between these two forms of fetishism and their respective phenomenologies. Finally, returning to Serres, I briefly consider the theoretical consequences of introducing the fashion object as a quasi-object....

  8. Expression, purification and characterization of a novel double-sites mutant of the single-chain sweet-tasting protein monellin (MNEI) with both improved sweetness and stability. (United States)

    Zheng, Weiwei; Yang, Liu; Cai, Chenggu; Ni, Jinfeng; Liu, Bo


    The sweet protein monellin has high sweet potency with limited stability. In this study, 3 double-sites mutants (E2N/E23A, E2N/Y65R and E23A/Y65R) of the single-chain monellin (MNEI) were constructed. The proteins were expressed in E. coli BL21 and purified to homogeneity by nickel affinity chromatography with yields above 10 mg/L cell culture. Introduction of a sweeter mutant E2N into E23A or Y65R (E2N/E23A and E2N/Y65R) led to about 3-fold increase of sweetness, while addition of a more stable mutant E23A into E2N or Y65R (E2N/E23A and E23A/Y65R) resulted in improved thermal stability (about 10 °C). The results indicate that residues E2 and E23 mediate the sweetness and thermal stability of the protein, respectively. Multiple mutations of different residues (E2N/E23A) led to an additive performance with both improved sweetness and stability, suggesting that the sweetness and stability could be modulated by the independent molecular mechanism. The sweeter and thermal stable variant has a potential in further industrial applications. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Sleep quality improved following a single session of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise in older women: Results from a pilot study (United States)

    Wang, Xuewen; Youngstedt, Shawn D.


    Background Poor sleep quality is associated with adverse effects on health outcomes. It is not clear whether exercise can improve sleep quality and whether intensity of exercise affects any of the effects. Methods Fifteen healthy, non-obese (body mass index = 24.4 ± 2.1 kg/m2, mean ± SD), sedentary (exercise on no more than 3 times/week) older women (66.1 ± 3.9 years) volunteered for the study. Peak oxygen consumption (VO2peak) was evaluated using a graded exercise test on a treadmill with a metabolic cart. Following a 7-day baseline period, each participant completed two exercise sessions (separated by 1 week) with equal caloric expenditure, but at different intensities (60% and 45% VO2peak, sequence randomized) between 9:00 and 11:00 am. A wrist ActiGraph monitor was used to assess sleep at baseline and two nights following each exercise session. Results The average duration of the exercise was 54 and 72 min, respectively at 60% (moderate-intensity) and 45% VO2peak (light-intensity). Wake time after sleep onset was significantly shorter (p = 0.016), the number of awakenings was less (p = 0.046), and total activity counts were lower (p = 0.05) after the moderate-intensity exercise compared to baseline no-exercise condition. Conclusion Our data showed that a single moderate-intensity aerobic exercise session improved sleep quality in older women. PMID:25685605

  10. Improved performance of air-cathode single-chamber microbial fuel cell for wastewater treatment using microfiltration membranes and multiple sludge inoculation (United States)

    Sun, Jian; Hu, Yongyou; Bi, Zhe; Cao, Yunqing

    Substantial optimization and cost reduction are required before microbial fuel cells (MFCs) can be practically applied. We show here the performance improvement of an air-cathode single-chamber MFC by using a microfiltration membrane (MFM) on the water-facing side of the cathode and using multiple aerobic sludge (AES), anaerobic sludge (ANS), and wetland sediment (WLS) as anodic inoculums. Batch test results show that the MFC with an MFM resulted in an approximately two-fold increase in maximum power density compared to the MFC with a proton exchange membrane (PEM). The Coulombic efficiency increased from 4.17% to 5.16% in comparison with the membrane-less MFC, without a significant negative effect on power generation and internal resistance. Overall performance of the MFC was also improved by using multiple sludge inoculums in the anode. The MFC inoculated with ANS + WLS produced the greatest maximal power density of 373 mW m -2 with a substantially low internal resistance of 38 Ω. Higher power density with a decreased internal resistance was also achieved in MFC inoculated with ANS + AES and ANS + AES + WLS in comparison with those inoculated with only one sludge. The MFCs inoculated with AES + ANS achieved the highest Coulombic efficiency. Over 92% COD was removed from confectionery wastewater in all tested MFCs, regardless of the membrane or inoculum used.

  11. Improved performance of air-cathode single-chamber microbial fuel cell for wastewater treatment using microfiltration membranes and multiple sludge inoculation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sun, Jian; Hu, Yongyou; Bi, Zhe; Cao, Yunqing [Department of Environmental Science and Engineering, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510006 (China)


    Substantial optimization and cost reduction are required before microbial fuel cells (MFCs) can be practically applied. We show here the performance improvement of an air-cathode single-chamber MFC by using a microfiltration membrane (MFM) on the water-facing side of the cathode and using multiple aerobic sludge (AES), anaerobic sludge (AN