International Science Index

629
10009064
Conceptualizing of Priorities in the Dynamics of Public Administration Contemporary Reforms
Abstract:

The article presents the results of the creative analysis and comparison of trends in the development of the theory of public administration during the period from the second half of the 20th to the beginning of the 21st century. The process of conceptualization of the priorities of public administration in the dynamics of reforming was held under the influence of such factors as globalization, integration, information and technological changes and human rights is examined. The priorities of the social state in the concepts of the second half of the 20th century are studied. Peculiar approaches to determining the priorities of public administration in the countries of "Soviet dictatorship" in Central and Eastern Europe in the same period are outlined. Particular attention is paid to the priorities of public administration regarding the interaction between public power and society and the development of conceptual foundations for the modern managerial process. There is a thought that the dynamics of the formation of concepts of the European governance is characterized by the sequence of priorities: from socio-economic and moral-ethical to organizational-procedural and non-hierarchical ones. The priorities of the "welfare state" were focused on the decent level of material wellbeing of population. At the same time, the conception of "minimal state" emphasized priorities of human responsibility for their own fate under the conditions of minimal state protection. Later on, the emphasis was placed on horizontal ties and redistribution of powers and competences of "effective state" with its developed procedures and limits of responsibility at all levels of government and in close cooperation with the civil society. The priorities of the contemporary period are concentrated on human rights in the concepts of "good governance" and all the following ones, which recognize the absolute priority of public administration with compliance, provision and protection of human rights. There is a proved point of view that civilizational changes taking place under the influence of information and technological imperatives also stipulate changes in priorities, redistribution of emphases and update principles of managerial concepts on the basis of publicity, transparency, departure from traditional forms of hierarchy and control in favor of interactivity and inter-sectoral interaction, decentralization and humanization of managerial processes. The necessity to permanently carry out the reorganization, by establishing the interaction between different participants of public power and social relations, to establish a balance between political forces and social interests on the basis of mutual trust and mutual understanding determines changes of social, political, economic and humanitarian paradigms of public administration and their theoretical comprehension. The further studies of theoretical foundations of modern public administration in interdisciplinary discourse in the context of ambiguous consequences of the globalizational and integrational processes of modern European state-building would be advisable. This is especially true during the period of political transformations and economic crises which are the characteristic of the contemporary Europe, especially for democratic transition countries.

628
10008881
Risk Based Maintenance Planning for Loading Equipment in Underground Hard Rock Mine: Case Study
Abstract:

Mining industry is known for its appetite to spend sizeable capital on mine equipment. However, in the current scenario, the mining industry is challenged by daunting factors of non-uniform geological conditions, uneven ore grade, uncontrollable and volatile mineral commodity prices and the ever increasing quest to optimize the capital and operational costs. Thus, the role of equipment reliability and maintenance planning inherits a significant role in augmenting the equipment availability for the operation and in turn boosting the mine productivity. This paper presents the Risk Based Maintenance (RBM) planning conducted on mine loading equipment namely Load Haul Dumpers (LHDs) at Vedanta Resources Ltd subsidiary Hindustan Zinc Limited operated Sindesar Khurd Mines, an underground zinc and lead mine situated in Dariba, Rajasthan, India. The mining equipment at the location is maintained by the Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) namely Sandvik and Atlas Copco, who carry out the maintenance and inspection operations for the equipment. Based on the downtime data extracted for the equipment fleet over the period of 6 months spanning from 1st January 2017 until 30th June 2017, it was revealed that significant contribution of three downtime issues related to namely Engine, Hydraulics, and Transmission to be common among all the loading equipment fleet and substantiated by Pareto Analysis. Further scrutiny through Bubble Matrix Analysis of the given factors revealed the major influence of selective factors namely Overheating, No Load Taken (NTL) issues, Gear Changing issues and Hose Puncture and leakage issues. Utilizing the equipment wise analysis of all the downtime factors obtained, spares consumed, and the alarm logs extracted from the machines, technical design changes in the equipment and pre shift critical alarms checklist were proposed for the equipment maintenance. The given analysis is beneficial to allow OEMs or mine management to focus on the critical issues hampering the reliability of mine equipment and design necessary maintenance strategies to mitigate them.

Paper Detail
74
downloads
627
10008979
Analysis of Construction Waste Generation and Its Effect in a Construction Site
Abstract:

The generation of solid waste and its effective management are debated topics in Sri Lanka as well as in the global environment. It was estimated that the most of the waste generated in global was originated from construction and demolition of buildings. Thus, the proportion of construction waste in solid waste generation cannot be underestimated. The construction waste, which is the by-product generated and removed from work sites is collected in direct and indirect processes. Hence, the objectives of this research are to identify the proportion of construction waste which can be reused and identify the methods to reduce the waste generation without reducing the quality of the process. A 6-storey building construction site was selected for this research. The site was divided into six zones depending on the process. Ten waste materials were identified by considering the adverse effects on safety and health of people and the economic value of them. The generated construction waste in each zone was recorded per week for a period of five months. The data revealed that sand, cement, wood used for form work and rusted steel rods were the generated waste which has higher economic value in all zones. Structured interviews were conducted to gather information on how the materials are categorized as waste and the capability of reducing, reusing and recycling the waste. It was identified that waste is generated in following processes; ineffective storage of material for a longer time and improper handling of material during the work process. Further, the alteration of scheduled activities of construction work also yielded more waste. Finally, a proper management of construction waste is suggested to reduce and reuse waste.

Paper Detail
54
downloads
626
10008983
Pilot Scale Investigation on the Removal of Pollutants from Secondary Effluent to Meet Botswana Irrigation Standards Using Roughing and Slow Sand Filters
Abstract:

Botswana is an arid country that needs to start reusing wastewater as part of its water security plan. Pilot scale slow sand filtration in combination with roughing filter was investigated for the treatment of effluent from Botswana International University of Science and Technology to meet Botswana irrigation standards. The system was operated at hydraulic loading rates of 0.04 m/hr and 0.12 m/hr. The results show that the system was able to reduce turbidity from 262 Nephelometric Turbidity Units to a range between 18 and 0 Nephelometric Turbidity Units which was below 30 Nephelometric Turbidity Units threshold limit. The overall efficacy ranged between 61% and 100%. Suspended solids, Biochemical Oxygen Demand, and Chemical Oxygen Demand removal efficiency averaged 42.6%, 45.5%, and 77% respectively and all within irrigation standards. Other physio-chemical parameters were within irrigation standards except for bicarbonate ion which averaged 297.7±44 mg L-1 in the influent and 196.22±50 mg L-1 in the effluent which was above the limit of 92 mg L-1, therefore averaging a reduction of 34.1% by the system. Total coliforms, fecal coliforms, and Escherichia coli in the effluent were initially averaging 1.1 log counts, 0.5 log counts, and 1.3 log counts respectively compared to corresponding influent log counts of 3.4, 2.7 and 4.1, respectively. As time passed, it was observed that only roughing filter was able to reach reductions of 97.5%, 86% and 100% respectively for faecal coliforms, Escherichia coli, and total coliforms. These organism numbers were observed to have increased in slow sand filter effluent suggesting multiplication in the tank. Water quality index value of 22.79 for the physio-chemical parameters suggests that the effluent is of excellent quality and can be used for irrigation purposes. However, the water quality index value for the microbial parameters (1820) renders the quality unsuitable for irrigation. It is concluded that slow sand filtration in combination with roughing filter is a viable option for the treatment of secondary effluent for reuse purposes. However, further studies should be conducted especially for the removal of microbial parameters using the system.

Paper Detail
55
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625
10009036
Analysis and Modeling of Stresses and Creeps Resulting from Soil Mechanics in Southern Plains of Kerman Province
Abstract:
Many of the engineering materials, such as behavioral metals, have at least a certain level of linear behavior. It means that if the stresses are doubled, the deformations would be also doubled. In fact, these materials have linear elastic properties. Soils do not follow this law, for example, when compressed, soils become gradually tighter. On the surface of the ground, the sand can be easily deformed with a finger, but in high compressive stresses, they gain considerable hardness and strength. This is mainly due to the increase in the forces among the separate particles. Creeps also deform the soils under a constant load over time. Clay and peat soils have creep behavior. As a result of this phenomenon, structures constructed on such soils will continue their collapse over time. In this paper, the researchers analyzed and modeled the stresses and creeps in the southern plains of Kerman province in Iran through library-documentary, quantitative and software techniques, and field survey. The results of the modeling showed that these plains experienced severe stresses and had a collapse of about 26 cm in the last 15 years and also creep evidence was discovered in an area with a gradient of 3-6 degrees.
Paper Detail
12
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624
10009039
Studying the Effect of Froude Number and Densimetric Froude Number on Local Scours around Circular Bridge Piers
Abstract:

A very large percentage of bridge failures are attributed to scouring around bridge piers and this directly influences public safety. Experiments are carried out in a 12-m long rectangular open channel flume made of transparent tempered glass. A 300 mm thick bed made up of sand particles is leveled horizontally to create the test bed and a 50 mm hollow plastic cylinder is used as a model bridge pier. Tests are carried out with varying flow depths and velocities. Data points of various scour parameters such as scour depth, width, and length are collected based on different flow conditions and visual observations of changes in the stream bed downstream the bridge pier are also made as the scour progresses. Result shows that all three major flow characteristics (flow depth, Froude number and densimetric Froude number) have one way or other affect the scour profile.

Paper Detail
14
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623
10008806
Development of a Standardization Methodology Assessing the Comfort Performance for Hanok
Abstract:

Korean traditional residences have been built with deep design issues for various values such as social, cultural, and environmental influences to be started from a few thousand years ago, but its meaning is being vanished due to the different lifestyles these days. It is necessary, therefore, to grasp the meaning of the Korea traditional building called Hanok and to get Korean people understand its real advantages. The purpose of this study is to propose a standardization methodology for evaluating comfort features towards Korean traditional houses. This paper is also trying to build an official standard evaluation system and to integrate aesthetic and psychological values induced from Hanok. Its comfort performance values could be divided into two large categories that are physical and psychological, and fourteen methods have been defined as the Korean Standards (KS). For this research, field survey data from representative Hanok types were collected for each method. This study also contains a qualitative in-depth analysis of the Hanok comfort index by the professions using AHP (Analytical Hierarchy Process) and has examined the effect of the methods. As a result, this paper could define what methods can provide trustful outcomes and how to evaluate the own strengths in aspects of spatial comfort of Hanok using suggested procedures towards the spatial configuration of the traditional dwellings. This study has finally proposed an integrated development of a standardization methodology assessing the comfort performance for Korean traditional residences, and it is expected that they could evaluate inhabitants of the residents and interior environmental conditions especially structured by wood materials like Hanok.

Paper Detail
101
downloads
622
10008660
Automated Buffer Box Assembly Cell Concept for the Canadian Used Fuel Packing Plant
Abstract:

The Canadian Used Fuel Container (UFC) is a mid-size hemispherical headed copper coated steel container measuring 2.5 meters in length and 0.5 meters in diameter containing 48 used fuel bundles. The contained used fuel produces significant gamma radiation requiring automated assembly processes to complete the assembly. The design throughput of 2,500 UFCs per year places constraints on equipment and hot cell design for repeatability, speed of processing, robustness and recovery from upset conditions. After UFC assembly, the UFC is inserted into a Buffer Box (BB). The BB is made from adequately pre-shaped blocks (lower and upper block) and Highly Compacted Bentonite (HCB) material. The blocks are practically ‘sandwiching’ the UFC between them after assembly. This paper identifies one possible approach for the BB automatic assembly cell and processes. Automation of the BB assembly will have a significant positive impact on nuclear safety, quality, productivity, and reliability.

Paper Detail
96
downloads
621
10008679
Geoelectical Resistivity Method in Aquifer Characterization at Opic Estate, Isheri-Osun River Basin, South Western Nigeria
Abstract:

Investigation was carried out at Opic Estate in Isheri-Osun River Basin environment using Electrical Resistivity method to study saltwater intrusion into a fresh water aquifer system from the proximal estuarine water body. The investigation is aimed at aquifer characterisation using electrical resistivity method in order to provide the depth to which fresh water fit for both domestic and industrial consumption. The 2D Electrical Resistivity and Vertical Electrical Resistivity techniques alongside Laboratory analysis of water samples obtained from the boreholes were adopted. Three traverses were investigated using Wenner and Pole-Dipole array with multi-electrode system consisting of 84 electrodes and a spread of 581 m, 664 m and 830 m were attained on the traverses. The main lithologies represented in the study area are Sand, Clay and Clayey Sand of which Sand constitutes the aquifer in the study area. Vertical Electrical Sounding data obtained at different lateral distance on the traverses have indicated that the water in the aquifer in the subsurface is brackish. Brackish water is represented by lowelectrical resistivity value signature while fresh water is characterized by relatively high electrical resistivity and in some regionfresh water is existent at depth greater than 200 m. Results of laboratory analysis of samples showed that the pH, Salinity, Total Dissolved Solid and Conductivity indicated existence of water with poor quality, indicating that salinity, TDS and Conductivity is higher in the Northern part of the study area. The 2D electrical resistivity and Vertical Electrical Sounding methods indicate that fresh water region is at ≥200m depth. Aquifers not fit for domestic use in the study area occur downwards to about 200 m in depth. In conclusion, it is recommended that wells should be sunkbeyond 220 m for the possible procurement of portable fresh water.

Paper Detail
93
downloads
620
10008783
A Numerical Description of a Fibre Reinforced Concrete Using a Genetic Algorithm
Abstract:

This work reports about an approach for an automatic adaptation of concrete formulations based on genetic algorithms (GA) to optimize a wide range of different fit-functions. In order to achieve the goal, a method was developed which provides a numerical description of a fibre reinforced concrete (FRC) mixture regarding the production technology and the property spectrum of the concrete. In a first step, the FRC mixture with seven fixed components was characterized by varying amounts of the components. For that purpose, ten concrete mixtures were prepared and tested. The testing procedure comprised flow spread, compressive and bending tensile strength. The analysis and approximation of the determined data was carried out by GAs. The aim was to obtain a closed mathematical expression which best describes the given seven-point cloud of FRC by applying a Gene Expression Programming with Free Coefficients (GEP-FC) strategy. The seven-parametric FRC-mixtures model which is generated according to this method correlated well with the measured data. The developed procedure can be used for concrete mixtures finding closed mathematical expressions, which are based on the measured data.

Paper Detail
86
downloads
619
10008443
Shear Modulus Degradation of a Liquefiable Sand Deposit by Shaking Table Tests
Abstract:

Strength and deformability characteristics of a liquefiable sand deposit including the development of earthquake-induced shear stress and shear strain as well as soil softening via the progressive degradation of shear modulus were studied via shaking table experiments. To do so, a model of a liquefiable sand deposit was constructed and densely instrumented where accelerations, pressures, and displacements at different locations were continuously monitored. Furthermore, the confinement effects on the strength and deformation characteristics of the liquefiable sand deposit due to an external surcharge by placing a heavy concrete slab (i.e. the model of an actual structural rigid pavement) on the ground surface were examined. The results indicate that as the number of seismic-loading cycles increases, the sand deposit softens progressively as large shear strains take place in different sand elements. Liquefaction state is reached after the combined effects of the progressive degradation of the initial shear modulus associated with the continuous decrease in the mean principal stress, and the buildup of the excess of pore pressure takes place in the sand deposit. Finally, the confinement effects given by a concrete slab placed on the surface of the sand deposit resulted in a favorable increasing in the initial shear modulus, an increase in the mean principal stress and a decrease in the softening rate (i.e. the decreasing rate in shear modulus) of the sand, thus making the onset of liquefaction to take place at a later stage. This is, only after the sand deposit having a concrete slab experienced a higher number of seismic loading cycles liquefaction took place, in contrast to an ordinary sand deposit having no concrete slab.

Paper Detail
191
downloads
618
10008603
Modeling of Microelectromechanical Systems Diaphragm Based Acoustic Sensor
Abstract:

Acoustic sensors are extensively used in recent days not only for sensing and condition monitoring applications but also for small scale energy harvesting applications to power wireless sensor networks (WSN) due to their inherent advantages. The natural frequency of the structure plays a major role in energy harvesting applications since the sensor key element has to operate at resonant frequency. In this paper, circular diaphragm based MEMS acoustic sensor is modelled by Lumped Element Model (LEM) and the natural frequency is compared with the simulated model using Finite Element Method (FEM) tool COMSOL Multiphysics. The sensor has the circular diaphragm of 3000 µm radius and thickness of 30 µm to withstand the high SPL (Sound Pressure Level) and also to withstand the various fabrication steps. A Piezoelectric ZnO layer of thickness of 1 µm sandwiched between two aluminium electrodes of thickness 0.5 µm and is coated on the diaphragm. Further, a channel with radius 3000 µm radius and length 270 µm is connected at the bottom of the diaphragm. The natural frequency of the structure by LEM method is approximately 16.6 kHz which is closely matching with that of simulated structure with suitable approximations.

Paper Detail
92
downloads
617
10008627
A Study of Combined Mechanical and Chemical Stabilisation of Fine Grained Dredge Soil of River Jhelum
Abstract:

After the recent devastating flood in Kashmir in 2014, dredging of the local water bodies, especially Jhelum River has become a priority for the government. Local government under the project name of 'Comprehensive Flood Management Programme' plans to undertake an increase in discharge of existing flood channels by removal of encroachments and acquisition of additional land, dredging and other works of the water bodies. The total quantity of soil to be dredged will be 16.15 lac cumecs. Dredged soil is a major component that would result from the project which requires disposal/utilization. This study analyses the effect of cement and sand on the engineering properties of soil. The tests were conducted with variable additions of sand (10%, 20% and 30%), whereas cement was added at 12%. Samples with following compositions: soil-cement (12%) and soil-sand (30%) were tested as well. Laboratory experiments were conducted to determine the engineering characteristics of soil, i.e., compaction, strength, and CBR characteristics. The strength characteristics of the soil were determined by unconfined compressive strength test and direct shear test. Unconfined compressive strength of the soil was tested immediately and for a curing period of seven days. CBR test was performed for unsoaked, soaked (worst condition- 4 days) and cured (4 days) samples.

Paper Detail
116
downloads
616
10008708
Determining G-γ Degradation Curve in Cohesive Soils by Dilatometer and in situ Seismic Tests
Abstract:

This article discusses the possibility of using dilatometer tests (DMT) together with in situ seismic tests (MASW) in order to get the shape of G-g degradation curve in cohesive soils (clay, silty clay, silt, clayey silt and sandy silt). MASW test provides the small soil stiffness (Go from vs) at very small strains and DMT provides the stiffness of the soil at ‘work strains’ (MDMT). At different test locations, dilatometer shear stiffness of the soil has been determined by the theory of elasticity. Dilatometer shear stiffness has been compared with the theoretical G-g degradation curve in order to determine the typical range of shear deformation for different types of cohesive soil. The analysis also includes factors that influence the shape of the degradation curve (G-g) and dilatometer modulus (MDMT), such as the overconsolidation ratio (OCR), plasticity index (IP) and the vertical effective stress in the soil (svo'). Parametric study in this article defines the range of shear strain gDMT and GDMT/Go relation depending on the classification of a cohesive soil (clay, silty clay, clayey silt, silt and sandy silt), function of density (loose, medium dense and dense) and the stiffness of the soil (soft, medium hard and hard). The article illustrates the potential of using MASW and DMT to obtain G-g degradation curve in cohesive soils.

Paper Detail
84
downloads
615
10008375
Determination of Small Shear Modulus of Clayey Sand Using Bender Element Test
Abstract:

In this article, the results of a series of carefully conducted laboratory test program were represented to determine the small strain shear modulus of sand mixed with a range of kaolinite including zero to 30%. This was experimentally achieved using a triaxial cell equipped with bender element. Results indicate that small shear modulus tends to increase, while clay content decreases and effective confining pressure increases. The exponent of stress in the power model regression analysis was not sensitive to the amount of clay content for all sand clay mixtures, while coefficient A was directly affected by change in clay content.

Paper Detail
167
downloads
614
10008421
3D Numerical Analysis of Stone Columns Reinforced with Horizontal and Vertical Geosynthetic Materials
Abstract:

Improvement and reinforcement of soils with poor strength and engineering properties for constructing low height structures or structures such as liquid storage tanks, bridge columns, and heavy structures have necessitated applying particular techniques. Stone columns are among the well-known methods applied in such soils. This method provides an economically justified way for improving engineering properties of soft clay and loose sandy soils. Stone column implementation in these soils increases their bearing capacity and reduces the settlement of foundation build on them. In the present study, the finite difference based FLAC3D software was used to investigate the performance and effect of soil reinforcement through stone columns without lining and those with geosynthetic lining with different levels of stiffness in horizontal and vertical modes in clayey soils. The results showed that soil improvement using stone columns with lining in vertical and horizontal modes results in improvement of bearing capacity and foundation settlement.

Paper Detail
146
downloads
613
10008449
Physical and Mechanical Phenomena Associated with Rock Failure in Brazilian Disc Specimens
Abstract:
Failure mechanism of rocks is one of the fundamental aspects to study rock engineering stability. Rock is a material that contains flaws, initial damage, micro-cracks, etc. Failure of rock structure is largely due to tensile stress and was influenced by various parameters. In the present study, the effect of brittleness and loading rate on the physical and mechanical phenomena produced in rock during loading sequences is considered. For this purpose, Acoustic Emission (AE) technique is used to monitor fracturing process of three rock types (onyx marble, sandstone and soft limestone) with different brittleness and sandstone samples under different loading rate. The results of experimental tests revealed that brittleness and loading rate have a significant effect on the mode and number of induced fracture in rocks. An increase in rock brittleness increases the frequency of induced cracks, and the number of tensile fracture decreases when loading rate increases.
Paper Detail
138
downloads
612
10008261
The DAQ Debugger for iFDAQ of the COMPASS Experiment
Abstract:
In general, state-of-the-art Data Acquisition Systems (DAQ) in high energy physics experiments must satisfy high requirements in terms of reliability, efficiency and data rate capability. This paper presents the development and deployment of a debugging tool named DAQ Debugger for the intelligent, FPGA-based Data Acquisition System (iFDAQ) of the COMPASS experiment at CERN. Utilizing a hardware event builder, the iFDAQ is designed to be able to readout data at the average maximum rate of 1.5 GB/s of the experiment. In complex softwares, such as the iFDAQ, having thousands of lines of code, the debugging process is absolutely essential to reveal all software issues. Unfortunately, conventional debugging of the iFDAQ is not possible during the real data taking. The DAQ Debugger is a tool for identifying a problem, isolating the source of the problem, and then either correcting the problem or determining a way to work around it. It provides the layer for an easy integration to any process and has no impact on the process performance. Based on handling of system signals, the DAQ Debugger represents an alternative to conventional debuggers provided by most integrated development environments. Whenever problem occurs, it generates reports containing all necessary information important for a deeper investigation and analysis. The DAQ Debugger was fully incorporated to all processes in the iFDAQ during the run 2016. It helped to reveal remaining software issues and improved significantly the stability of the system in comparison with the previous run. In the paper, we present the DAQ Debugger from several insights and discuss it in a detailed way.
Paper Detail
184
downloads
611
10008273
Automated Video Surveillance System for Detection of Suspicious Activities during Academic Offline Examination
Abstract:

This research work aims to develop a system that will analyze and identify students who indulge in malpractices/suspicious activities during the course of an academic offline examination. Automated Video Surveillance provides an optimal solution which helps in monitoring the students and identifying the malpractice event immediately. This work is organized into three modules. The first module deals with performing an impersonation check using a PCA-based face recognition method which is done by cross checking his profile with the database. The presence or absence of the student is even determined in this module by implementing an image registration technique wherein a grid is formed by considering all the images registered using the frontal camera at the determined positions. Second, detecting such facial malpractices in which a student gets involved in conversation with another, trying to obtain unauthorized information etc., based on the threshold range evaluated by considering his/her mouth state whether open or closed. The third module deals with identification of unauthorized material or gadgets used in the examination hall by training the positive samples of the object through various stages. Here, a top view camera feed is analyzed to detect the suspicious activities. The system automatically alerts the administration when any suspicious activities are identified, thereby reducing the error rate caused due to manual monitoring. This work is an improvement over our previous work published in identifying suspicious activities done by examinees in an offline examination.

Paper Detail
155
downloads
610
10008283
Assessment of Conventional Drinking Water Treatment Plants as Removal Systems of Virulent Microsporidia
Abstract:

Microsporidia comprises various pathogenic species can infect humans by means of water. Moreover, chlorine disinfection of drinking-water has limitations against this protozoan pathogen. A total of 48 water samples were collected from two drinking water treatment plants having two different filtration systems (slow sand filter and rapid sand filter) during one year period. Samples were collected from inlet and outlet of each plant. Samples were separately filtrated through nitrocellulose membrane (142 mm, 0.45 µm), then eluted and centrifuged. The obtained pellet from each sample was subjected to DNA extraction, then, amplification using genus-specific primer for microsporidia. Each microsporidia-PCR positive sample was performed by two species specific primers for Enterocytozoon bieneusi and Encephalitozoon intestinalis. The results of the present study showed that the percentage of removal for microsporidia through different treatment processes reached its highest rate in the station using slow sand filters (100%), while the removal by rapid sand filter system was 81.8%. Statistically, the two different drinking water treatment plants (slow and rapid) had significant effect for removal of microsporidia. Molecular identification of microsporidia-PCR positive samples using two different primers for Enterocytozoon bieneusi and Encephalitozoon intestinalis showed the presence of the two pervious species in the inlet water of the two stations, while Encephalitozoon intestinalis was detected in the outlet water only. In conclusion, the appearance of virulent microsporidia in treated drinking water may cause potential health threat.

Paper Detail
168
downloads
609
10008614
Movie Genre Preference Prediction Using Machine Learning for Customer-Based Information
Abstract:
Most movie recommendation systems have been developed for customers to find items of interest. This work introduces a predictive model usable by small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) who are in need of a data-based and analytical approach to stock proper movies for local audiences and retain more customers. We used classification models to extract features from thousands of customers’ demographic, behavioral and social information to predict their movie genre preference. In the implementation, a Gaussian kernel support vector machine (SVM) classification model and a logistic regression model were established to extract features from sample data and their test error-in-sample were compared. Comparison of error-out-sample was also made under different Vapnik–Chervonenkis (VC) dimensions in the machine learning algorithm to find and prevent overfitting. Gaussian kernel SVM prediction model can correctly predict movie genre preferences in 85% of positive cases. The accuracy of the algorithm increased to 93% with a smaller VC dimension and less overfitting. These findings advance our understanding of how to use machine learning approach to predict customers’ preferences with a small data set and design prediction tools for these enterprises.
Paper Detail
140
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608
10008179
Numerical Study for Compressive Strength of Basalt Composite Sandwich Infill Panel
Abstract:

In this study, we investigated the buckling performance of basalt fiber reinforced polymer (BFRP) sandwich infill panels. Fiber Reinforced Polymer (FRP) is a major evolution for energy dissipation when used as infill material of frame structure, a basic Polymer Matrix Composite (PMC) infill wall system consists of two FRP laminates surrounding an infill of foam core. Furthermore, this type of component is for retrofitting and strengthening frame structure to withstand the seismic disaster. In-plane compression was considered in the numerical analysis with ABAQUS platform to determine the buckling failure load of BFRP infill panel system. The present result shows that the sandwich BFRP infill panel system has higher resistance to buckling failure than those of glass fiber reinforced polymer (GFRP) infill panel system, i.e. 16% increase in buckling resistance capacity.

Paper Detail
182
downloads
607
10008183
Nanomaterial Based Electrochemical Sensors for Endocrine Disrupting Compounds
Abstract:
Main sources of endocrine disrupting compounds in the ecosystem are hormones, pesticides, phthalates, flame retardants, dioxins, personal-care products, coplanar polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), bisphenol A, and parabens. These endocrine disrupting compounds are responsible for learning disabilities, brain development problems, deformations of the body, cancer, reproductive abnormalities in females and decreased sperm count in human males. Although discharge of these chemical compounds into the environment cannot be stopped, yet their amount can be retarded through proper evaluation and detection techniques. The available techniques for determination of these endocrine disrupting compounds mainly include high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC), mass spectroscopy (MS) and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC–MS). These techniques are accurate and reliable but have certain limitations like need of skilled personnel, time consuming, interference and requirement of pretreatment steps. Moreover, these techniques are laboratory bound and sample is required in large amount for analysis. In view of above facts, new methods for detection of endocrine disrupting compounds should be devised that promise high specificity, ultra sensitivity, cost effective, efficient and easy-to-operate procedure. Nowadays, electrochemical sensors/biosensors modified with nanomaterials are gaining high attention among researchers. Bioelement present in this system makes the developed sensors selective towards analyte of interest. Nanomaterials provide large surface area, high electron communication feature, enhanced catalytic activity and possibilities of chemical modifications. In most of the cases, nanomaterials also serve as an electron mediator or electrocatalyst for some analytes.
Paper Detail
193
downloads
606
10008362
The Effect of Soil Contamination on Chemical Composition and Quality of Aronia (Aronia melanocarpa) Fruits
Abstract:

A field study was conducted to evaluate the chemical composition and quality of the Aronia fruits, as well as the possibilities of Aronia cultivation on soils contaminated with heavy metals. The experiment was performed on an agricultural field contaminated by the Non-Ferrous-Metal Works (NFMW) near Plovdiv, Bulgaria. The study included four varieties of Aronia; Aron variety, Hugin variety, Viking variety and Nero variety. The Aronia was cultivated according to the conventional technology on areas at a different distance from the source of pollution NFMW- Plovdiv (1 km, 3.5 km, and 15 km). The concentrations of macroelements, microelements, and heavy metals in Aronia fruits were determined. The dry matter content, ash, sugars, proteins, and fats were also determined. Aronia is a crop that is tolerant to heavy metals and can successfully be grown on soils contaminated with heavy metals. The increased content of heavy metals in the soil leads to less absorption of the nutrients (Ca, Mg and P) in the fruit of the Aronia. Soil pollution with heavy metals does not affect the quality of the Aronia fruit varieties.

Paper Detail
137
downloads
605
10008405
Effect of Fines on Liquefaction Susceptibility of Sandy Soil
Abstract:

Investigation of liquefaction susceptibility of materials that have been used in embankments, slopes, dams, and foundations is very essential. Many catastrophic geo-hazards such as flow slides, declination of foundations, and damage to earth structure are associated with static liquefaction that may occur during abrupt shearing of these materials. Many artificial backfill materials are mixtures of sand with fines and other composition. In order to provide some clarifications and evaluations on the role of fines in static liquefaction behaviour of sand sandy soils, the effect of fines on the liquefaction susceptibility of sand was experimentally examined in the present work over a range of fines content, relative density, and initial confining pressure. The results of an experimental study on various sand-fines mixtures are presented. Undrained static triaxial compression tests were conducted on saturated Perth sand containing 5% bentonite at three different relative densities (10, 50, and 90%), and saturated Perth sand containing both 5% bentonite and slag (2%, 4%, and 6%) at single relative density 10%. Undrained static triaxial tests were performed at three different initial confining pressures (100, 150, and 200 kPa). The brittleness index was used to quantify the liquefaction potential of sand-bentonite-slag mixtures. The results demonstrated that the liquefaction susceptibility of sand-5% bentonite mixture was more than liquefaction susceptibility of clean sandy soil. However, liquefaction potential decreased when both of two fines (bentonite and slag) were used. Liquefaction susceptibility of all mixtures decreased with increasing relative density and initial confining pressure.  

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122
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10007976
Effect of Fill Material Density under Structures on Ground Motion Characteristics Due to Earthquake
Abstract:

Due to limited areas and excessive cost of land for projects, backfilling process has become necessary. Also, backfilling will be done to overcome the un-leveling depths or raising levels of site construction, especially near the sea region. Therefore, backfilling soil materials used under the foundation of structures should be investigated regarding its effect on ground motion characteristics, especially at regions subjected to earthquakes. In this research, 60-meter thickness of sandy fill material was used above a fixed 240-meter of natural clayey soil underlying by rock formation to predict the modified ground motion characteristics effect at the foundation level. Comparison between the effect of using three different situations of fill material compaction on the recorded earthquake is studied, i.e. peak ground acceleration, time history, and spectra acceleration values. The three different densities of the compacted fill material used in the study were very loose, medium dense and very dense sand deposits, respectively. Shake computer program was used to perform this study. Strong earthquake records, with Peak Ground Acceleration (PGA) of 0.35 g, were used in the analysis. It was found that, higher compaction of fill material thickness has a significant effect on eliminating the earthquake ground motion properties at surface layer of fill material, near foundation level. It is recommended to consider the fill material characteristics in the design of foundations subjected to seismic motions. Future studies should be analyzed for different fill and natural soil deposits for different seismic conditions.

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161
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10007985
Design and Analysis of Universal Multifunctional Leaf Spring Main Landing Gear for Light Aircraft
Abstract:

A universal multi-function leaf spring main landing gear was designed for light aircraft. The main landing gear combined with the leaf spring, skidding, and wheels enables it to have a good takeoff and landing performance on various grounds such as the hard, snow, grass and sand grounds. Firstly, the characteristics of different landing sites were studied in this paper in order to analyze the load of the main landing gear on different types of grounds. Based on this analysis, the structural design optimization along with the strength and stiffness characteristics of the main landing gear has been done, which enables it to have good takeoff and landing performance on different types of grounds given the relevant regulations and standards. Additionally, the impact of the skidding on the aircraft during the flight was also taken into consideration. Finally, a universal multi-function leaf spring type of the main landing gear suitable for light aircraft has been developed.

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387
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602
10008007
An Evaluation of Solubility of Wax and Asphaltene in Crude Oil for Improved Flow Properties Using a Copolymer Solubilized in Organic Solvent with an Aromatic Hydrocarbon
Abstract:

Wax and asphaltene are high molecular weighted compounds that contribute to the stability of crude oil at a dispersed state. Transportation of crude oil along pipelines from the oil rig to the refineries causes fluctuation of temperature which will lead to the coagulation of wax and flocculation of asphaltenes. This paper focuses on the prevention of wax and asphaltene precipitate deposition on the inner surface of the pipelines by using a wax inhibitor and an asphaltene dispersant. The novelty of this prevention method is the combination of three substances; a wax inhibitor dissolved in a wax inhibitor solvent and an asphaltene solvent, namely, ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA) copolymer dissolved in methylcyclohexane (MCH) and toluene (TOL) to inhibit the precipitation and deposition of wax and asphaltene. The objective of this paper was to optimize the percentage composition of each component in this inhibitor which can maximize the viscosity reduction of crude oil. The optimization was divided into two stages which are the laboratory experimental stage in which the viscosity of crude oil samples containing inhibitor of different component compositions is tested at decreasing temperatures and the data optimization stage using response surface methodology (RSM) to design an optimizing model. The results of experiment proved that the combination of 50% EVA + 25% MCH + 25% TOL gave a maximum viscosity reduction of 67% while the RSM model proved that the combination of 57% EVA + 20.5% MCH + 22.5% TOL gave a maximum viscosity reduction of up to 61%.

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330
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601
10008060
Buckling Resistance of Basalt Fiber Reinforced Polymer Infill Panel Subjected to Elevated Temperatures
Abstract:

Performance of Basalt Fiber Reinforced Polymer (BFRP) sandwich infill panel system under diagonal compression was studied by means of numerical analysis. Furthermore, the variation of temperature was considered to affect the mechanical properties of BFRP, since their composition was based on polymeric material. Moreover, commercial finite element analysis platform ABAQUS was used to model and analyze this infill panel system. Consequently, results of the analyses show that the overall performance of BFRP panel had a 15% increase compared to that of GFRP infill panel system. However, the variation of buckling load in terms of temperature for the BFRP system showed a more sensitive nature compared to those of GFRP system.

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155
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10008095
Pyrethroid Resistance and Its Mechanism in Field Populations of the Sand Termite, Psammotermes hypostoma Desneux
Abstract:

Termites are eusocial insects that are found on all continents except Antarctica. Termites have serious destructive impact, damaging local huts and crops of poor subsistence. The annual cost of termite damage and its control is determined in the billions globally. In Egypt, most of these damages are due to the subterranean termite species especially the sand termite, P. hypostoma. Pyrethroids became the primary weapon for subterranean termite control, after the use of chlorpyrifos as a soil termiticide was banned. Despite the important role of pyrethroids in termite control, its extensive use in pest control led to the eventual rise of insecticide resistance which may make many of the pyrethroids ineffective. The ability to diagnose the precise mechanism of pyrethroid resistance in any insect species would be the key component of its management at specified location for a specific population. In the present study, detailed toxicological and biochemical studies was conducted on the mechanism of pyrethroid resistance in P. hypostoma. The susceptibility of field populations of P. hypostoma against deltamethrin, α-cypermethrin and ƛ-cyhalothrin was evaluated. The obtained results revealed that the workers of P. hypostoma have developed high resistance level against the tested pyrethroids. Studies carried out through estimation of detoxification enzyme activity indicated that enhanced esterase and cytochrome P450 activities were probably important mechanisms for pyrethroid resistance in field populations. Elevated esterase activity and also additional esterase isozyme were observed in the pyrethroid-resistant populations compared to the susceptible populations. Strong positive correlation between cytochrome P450 activity and pyrethroid resistance was also reported. |Deltamethrin could be recommended as a resistance-breaking pyrethroid that is active against resistant populations of P. hypostoma.

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167
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