Properties of Bacterial Nanocellulose for Scenic Arts

Kombucha (a symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast) produces material capable of acquiring multiple shapes and textures that change significantly under different environment or temperature variations (e.g., when it is exposed to wet conditions), properties that may be explored in the scenic industry. This paper presents an analysis of its specific characteristics, exploring them as a non-conventional material for arts and performance. Costume Design uses surfaces as a powerful way of expression to represent concepts and stories; it may apply the unique features of nano bacterial cellulose (NBC) as assets in this artistic context. A mix of qualitative and quantitative (interventionist) methodology approaches were used such as review of relevant literature to deepen knowledge on the research topic (crossing bibliography from different fields of studies: biology, art, costume design, etc.); as well as descriptive methods: laboratorial experiments, document quantities, observation to identify material properties and possibilities used to express a multiple narrative ideas, concepts and feelings. The results confirmed that NBC is an interactive and versatile material viable to be used in an alternative scenic context; its unique aesthetic and performative qualities, which change in contact to moisture, are resources that can be used to show a visual and poetic impact on stage.

Detection of Arcobacter and Helicobacter pylori Contamination in Organic Vegetables by Cultural and PCR Methods

The most demanded organic foods worldwide are those that are consumed fresh, such as fruits and vegetables. However, there is a knowledge gap about some aspects of organic food microbiological quality and safety. Organic fruits and vegetables are more exposed to pathogenic microorganisms due to surface contact with natural fertilizers such as animal manure, wastes and vermicompost used during farming. Therefore, the objective of this work was to study the contamination of organic fresh green leafy vegetables by two emergent pathogens, Arcobacter spp. and Helicobacter pylori. For this purpose, a total of 24 vegetable samples, 13 lettuce and 11 spinach were acquired from 10 different ecological supermarkets and greengroceries and analyzed by culture and PCR. Arcobacter spp. was detected in five samples (20%) by PCR, four spinach and one lettuce. One spinach sample was found to be also positive by culture. For H. pylori, the H. pylori VacA gene-specific band was detected in 12 vegetable samples (50%), 10 lettuces and two spinach. Isolation in the selective medium did not yield any positive result, possibly because of low contamination levels together with the presence of the organism in its viable but non-culturable form. Results showed significant levels of H. pylori and Arcobacter contamination in organic vegetables that are generally consumed raw, which seems to confirm that these foods can act as transmission vehicles to humans.

An Exploratory Approach to Consumer Based Online Authenticity: The Case of Terroir Product of Souss Massa Region, Morocco

Marketing research is starting to focus on authenticity to position an offer, especially terroir products. However, with internet its usage remains more problematic. This paper investigates how digitalization impacts the satisfaction of the quest for authenticity. On the theoretical level, it explains authenticity in the online and offline context in the postmodernism era. Then, an exploratory qualitative study tries to understand the contribution of the digitization to the satisfaction of the search of authenticity. Therefore, cooperatives selling terroir product on the internet are advised to keep also direct contact which tends to show traditional manner of production, in order to enhance customers’ perception of terroir product authenticity.

Gait Biometric for Person Re-Identification

Biometric identification is to identify unique features in a person like fingerprints, iris, ear, and voice recognition that need the subject's permission and physical contact. Gait biometric is used to identify the unique gait of the person by extracting moving features. The main advantage of gait biometric to identify the gait of a person at a distance, without any physical contact. In this work, the gait biometric is used for person re-identification. The person walking naturally compared with the same person walking with bag, coat and case recorded using long wave infrared, short wave infrared, medium wave infrared and visible cameras. The videos are recorded in rural and in urban environments. The pre-processing technique includes human identified using You Only Look Once, background subtraction, silhouettes extraction and synthesis Gait Entropy Image by averaging the silhouettes. The moving features are extracted from the Gait Entropy Energy Image. The extracted features are dimensionality reduced by the Principal Component Analysis and recognized using different classifiers. The comparative results with the different classifier show that Linear Discriminant Analysis outperform other classifiers with 95.8% for visible in the rural dataset and 94.8% for longwave infrared in the urban dataset.

Empirical Analysis of Velocity Behavior for Collaborative Robots in Transient Contact Cases

In this paper, a suitable measurement setup is presented to conduct force and pressure measurements for transient contact cases at the example of lathe machine tending. Empirical measurements were executed on a selected collaborative robot’s behavior regarding allowable operating speeds under consideration of sensor- and workpiece-specific factors. Comparisons between the theoretic calculations proposed in ISO/TS 15066 and the practical measurement results reveal a basis for future research. With the created database, preliminary risk assessment and economic assessment procedures of collaborative machine tending cells can be facilitated.

Additive Friction Stir Manufacturing Process: Interest in Understanding Thermal Phenomena and Numerical Modeling of the Temperature Rise Phase

Additive Friction Stir Manufacturing, or AFSM, is a new industrial process that follows the emergence of friction-based processes. The AFSM process is a solid-state additive process using the energy produced by the friction at the interface between a rotating non-consumable tool and a substrate. Friction depends on various parameters like axial force, rotation speed or friction coefficient. The feeder material is a metallic rod that flows through a hole in the tool. There is still a lack in understanding of the physical phenomena taking place during the process. This research aims at a better AFSM process understanding and implementation, thanks to numerical simulation and experimental validation performed on a prototype effector. Such an approach is considered a promising way for studying the influence of the process parameters and to finally identify a process window that seems relevant. The deposition of material through the AFSM process takes place in several phases. In chronological order these phases are the docking phase, the dwell time phase, the deposition phase, and the removal phase. The present work focuses on the dwell time phase that enables the temperature rise of the system due to pure friction. An analytic modeling of heat generation based on friction considers as main parameters the rotational speed and the contact pressure. Another parameter considered influential is the friction coefficient assumed to be variable, due to the self-lubrication of the system with the rise in temperature or the materials in contact roughness smoothing over time. This study proposes through a numerical modeling followed by an experimental validation to question the influence of the various input parameters on the dwell time phase. Rotation speed, temperature, spindle torque and axial force are the main monitored parameters during experimentations and serve as reference data for the calibration of the numerical model. This research shows that the geometry of the tool as well as fluctuations of the input parameters like axial force and rotational speed are very influential on the temperature reached and/or the time required to reach the targeted temperature. The main outcome is the prediction of a process window which is a key result for a more efficient process implementation.

Environmental Study on Urban Disinfection Using an On-site Generation System

In this experimental study, the behaviors of Mixed Oxidant solution components (MOS) and sodium hypochlorite (HYPO) as the most commonly applied surface disinfectant were compared through the effectiveness of chlorine disinfection as a function of the contact time and residual chlorine. In this regard, the variation of pH, free available chlorine (FAC) concentration, and electric conductivity (EC) of disinfection solutions in different concentrations were monitored over 48 h contact time. In parallel, the plant stress activated by chlorine-based disinfectants was assessed by comparing MOS and HYPO. The elements of pH and EC in the plant-soil and their environmental impacts, spread by disinfection solutions were analyzed through several concentrations of FAC including 500 mg/L, 1000 mg/L, and 5000 mg/L in irrigated water. All the experiments were carried out at the service station of Sant Cugat, Spain. The outcomes indicated lower pH and higher durability of MOS than HYPO at the same concentration of FAC which resulted in promising stability of FAC within MOS. Furthermore, the pH and EC value of plant-soil irrigated by NaOCl solution were higher than that of MOS solution at the same FAC concentration. On-site generation of MOS as a safe chlorination option might be considered an imaginary future of smart cities.

Lead-Free Inorganic Cesium Tin-Germanium Triiodide Perovskites for Photovoltaic Application

The toxicity of lead associated with the lifecycle of perovskite solar cells (PSCs( is a serious concern which may prove to be a major hurdle in the path toward their commercialization. The current proposed lead-free PSCs including Ag(I), Bi(III), Sb(III), Ti(IV), Ge(II), and Sn(II) low-toxicity cations are still plagued with the critical issues of poor stability and low efficiency. This is mainly because of their chemical stability. In the present research, utilization of all inorganic CsSnGeI3 based materials offers the advantages to enhance resistance of device to degradation, reduce the cost of cells, and minimize the carrier recombination. The presence of inorganic halide perovskite improves the photovoltaic parameters of PCSs via improved surface coverage and stability. The inverted structure of simulated devices using a 1D simulator like solar cell capacitance simulator (SCAPS) version 3308 involves TCOHTL/Perovskite/ETL/Au contact layer. PEDOT:PSS, PCBM, and CsSnGeI3 used as hole transporting layer (HTL), electron transporting layer (ETL), and perovskite absorber layer in the inverted structure for the first time. The holes are injected from highly stable and air tolerant Sn0.5Ge0.5I3 perovskite composition to HTM and electrons from the perovskite to ETL. Simulation results revealed a great dependence of power conversion efficiency (PCE) on the thickness and defect density of perovskite layer. Here the effect of an increase in operating temperature from 300 K to 400 K on the performance of CsSnGeI3 based perovskite devices is investigated. Comparison between simulated CsSnGeI3 based PCSs and similar real testified devices with spiro-OMeTAD as HTL showed that the extraction of carriers at the interfaces of perovskite absorber depends on the energy level mismatches between perovskite and HTL/ETL. We believe that optimization results reported here represent a critical avenue for fabricating the stable, low-cost, efficient, and eco-friendly all-inorganic Cs-Sn-Ge based lead-free perovskite devices.

Destination Decision Model for Cruising Taxis Based on Embedding Model

In Japan, taxi is one of the popular transportations and taxi industry is one of the big businesses. However, in recent years, there has been a difficult problem of reducing the number of taxi drivers. In the taxi business, mainly three passenger catching methods are applied. One style is "cruising" that drivers catches passengers while driving on a road. Second is "waiting" that waits passengers near by the places with many requirements for taxies such as entrances of hospitals, train stations. The third one is "dispatching" that is allocated based on the contact from the taxi company. Above all, the cruising taxi drivers need the experience and intuition for finding passengers, and it is difficult to decide "the destination for cruising". The strong recommendation system for the cruising taxies supports the new drivers to find passengers, and it can be the solution for the decreasing the number of drivers in the taxi industry. In this research, we propose a method of recommending a destination for cruising taxi drivers. On the other hand, as a machine learning technique, the embedding models that embed the high dimensional data to a low dimensional space is widely used for the data analysis, in order to represent the relationship of the meaning between the data clearly. Taxi drivers have their favorite courses based on their experiences, and the courses are different for each driver. We assume that the course of cruising taxies has meaning such as the course for finding business man passengers (go around the business area of the city of go to main stations) and course for finding traveler passengers (go around the sightseeing places or big hotels), and extract the meaning of their destinations. We analyze the cruising history data of taxis based on the embedding model and propose the recommendation system for passengers. Finally, we demonstrate the recommendation of destinations for cruising taxi drivers based on the real-world data analysis using proposing method.

Brief Review of the Self-Tightening, Left-Handed Thread

Loosening of bolted joints in rotating machines can adversely affect their performance, cause mechanical damage, and lead to injuries. In this paper, two potential loosening phenomena in rotating applications are discussed. First, ‘precession,’ is governed by thread/nut contact forces, while the second is based on inertial effects of the fastened assembly. These mechanisms are reviewed within the context of historical usage of left-handed fasteners in rotating machines which appears absent in the literature and common machine design texts. Historically, to prevent loosening of wheel nuts, vehicle manufacturers have used right-handed and left-handed threads on different sides of the vehicle, but most modern vehicles have abandoned this custom and only use right-handed, tapered lug nuts on all sides of the vehicle. Other classical machines such as the bicycle continue to use different handed threads on each side while other machines such as, bench grinders, circular saws and brush cutters still use left-handed threads to fasten rotating components. Despite the continued use of left-handed fasteners, the rationale and analysis of left-handed threads to mitigate self-loosening of fasteners in rotating applications is not commonly, if at all, discussed in the literature or design textbooks. Without scientific literature to support these design selections, these implementations may be the result of experimental findings or aged institutional knowledge. Based on a review of rotating applications, historical documents and mechanical design references, a formal study of the paradoxical nature of left-handed threads in various applications is merited.

Modal Analysis of a Cantilever Beam Using an Inexpensive Smartphone Camera: Motion Magnification Technique

This paper aims to prove the accuracy of an inexpensive smartphone camera as a non-contact vibration sensor to recover the vibration modes of a vibrating structure such as a cantilever beam. A video of a vibrating beam is filmed using a smartphone camera and then processed by the motion magnification technique. Based on this method, the first two natural frequencies and their associated mode shapes are estimated experimentally and compared to the analytical ones. Results show a relative error of less than 4% between the experimental and analytical approaches for the first two natural frequencies of the beam. Also, for the first two-mode shapes, a Modal Assurance Criterion (MAC) value of above 0.9 between the two approaches is obtained. This slight error between the different techniques ensures the viability of a cheap smartphone camera as a non-contact vibration sensor, particularly for structures vibrating at relatively low natural frequencies.

Study of Anti-Symmetric Flexural Mode Propagation along Wedge Tip with a Crack

Anti-symmetric wave propagation along the particle motion of the wedge waves is known as anti-symmetric flexural (ASF) modes which travel along the wedge tips of the mid-plane apex with a small truncation. This paper investigates the characteristics of the ASF modes propagation with the wedge tip crack. The simulation and experimental results obtained by a three-dimensional (3-D) finite element model explained the contact acoustic non-linear (CAN) behavior in explicit dynamics in ABAQUS and the ultrasonic non-destructive testing (NDT) method is used for defect detection. The effect of various parameters on its high and low-level conversion modes are known for complex reflections and transmissions involved with direct reflections and transmissions. The results are used to predict the location of crack through complex transmission and reflection coefficients.

Laser Ultrasonic Imaging Based on Synthetic Aperture Focusing Technique Algorithm

In this work, the laser ultrasound technique has been used for analyzing and imaging the inner defects in metal blocks. To detect the defects in blocks, traditionally the researchers used piezoelectric transducers for the generation and reception of ultrasonic signals. These transducers can be configured into the sparse and phased array. But these two configurations have their drawbacks including the requirement of many transducers, time-consuming calculations, limited bandwidth, and provide confined image resolution. Here, we focus on the non-contact method for generating and receiving the ultrasound to examine the inner defects in aluminum blocks. A Q-switched pulsed laser has been used for the generation and the reception is done by using Laser Doppler Vibrometer (LDV). Based on the Doppler effect, LDV provides a rapid and high spatial resolution way for sensing ultrasonic waves. From the LDV, a series of scanning points are selected which serves as the phased array elements. The side-drilled hole of 10 mm diameter with a depth of 25 mm has been introduced and the defect is interrogated by the linear array of scanning points obtained from the LDV. With the aid of the Synthetic Aperture Focusing Technique (SAFT) algorithm, based on the time-shifting principle the inspected images are generated from the A-scan data acquired from the 1-D linear phased array elements. Thus the defect can be precisely detected with good resolution.

Health Risk Assessment of Heavy Metals in the Contaminated and Uncontaminated Soils

Application of health risk assessment methods is important in order to comprehend the risk of human exposure to heavy metals and other dangerous pollutants. Four soil samples were collected at distances of 10, 20, 30 m and the control 100 m away from the dump site at depths of 0.3, 0.6 and 0.9 m. The collected soil samples were examined for Zn, Cu, Pb, Cd and Ni using standard methods. The health risks via the main pathways of human exposure to heavy metal were detected using relevant standard equations. Hazard quotient was calculated to determine non-carcinogenic health risk for each individual heavy metal. Life time cancer risk was calculated to determine the cumulative life cancer rating for each exposure pathway. The estimated health risk values for adults and children were generally lower than the reference dose. The calculated hazard quotient for the ingestion, inhalation and dermal contact pathways were less than unity. This means that there is no detrimental concern to the health on human exposure to heavy metals in contaminated soil. The life time cancer risk 5.4 × 10-2 was higher than the acceptable threshold value of 1 × 10-4 which is reflected to have significant health effects on human exposure to heavy metals in contaminated soil. Good hygienic practices are recommended to ease the potential risk to children and adult who are exposed to contaminated soils. Also, the local authorities should be made aware of such health risks for the purpose of planning the management strategy accordingly.

Numerical Simulation for Self-Loosening Phenomenon Analysis of Bolt Joint under Vibration

In this paper, the finite element method (FEM) is utilized to simulate the comprehensive process including tightening, releasing and self-loosening of a bolt joint under transverse vibration. Following to the accurate geometry of helical threads, an absolutely hexahedral meshing is implemented. The accuracy of simulation process is verified and validated by comparison with the experimental results on clamping force-vibration relationship, which shows the sufficient correlation. Further analysis with different amplitude and frequency of transverse vibration is done to determine the dominant factor inducing the failure.

Increasing the Forecasting Fidelity of Current Collection System Operating Capability by Means of Contact Pressure Simulation Modelling

Current collection quality is one of the limiting factors when increasing trains movement speed in the rail sector. With the movement speed growth, the impact forces on the current collector from the rolling stock and the aerodynamic influence increase, which leads to the spread in the contact pressure values, separation of the current collector head from the contact wire, contact arcing and excessive wear of the contact elements. The upcoming trend in resolving this issue is the use of the automatic control systems providing stabilization of the contact pressure value. The present paper considers the features of the contemporary automatic control systems of the current collector’s pressure; their major disadvantages have been stated. A scheme of current collector pressure automatic control has been proposed, distinguished by a proactive influence on undesirable effects. A mathematical model of contact strips wearing has been presented, obtained in accordance with the provisions of the central composition rotatable design program. The analysis of the obtained dependencies has been carried out. The procedures for determining the optimal current collector pressure on the contact wire and the pressure control principle in the pneumatic drive have been described.

Corrosion Study of Magnetically Driven Components in Spinal Implants by Immersion Testing in Simulated Body Fluids

Magnetically controlled growing rods (MCGRs) have been used to stabilise and correct spinal curvature in children to support non-invasive scoliosis adjustment. Although the encapsulated driving components are intended to be isolated from body fluid contact, in vivo corrosion was observed on these components due to sealing mechanism damage. Consequently, a corrosion circuit is created with the body fluids, resulting in malfunction of the lengthening mechanism. Particularly, the chloride ions in blood plasma or cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) may corrode the MCGR alloys, possibly resulting in metal ion release in long-term use. However, there is no data available on the corrosion resistance of spinal implant alloys in CSF. In this study, an in vitro immersion configuration was designed to simulate in vivo corrosion of 440C SS-Ti6Al4V couples. The 440C stainless steel (SS) was heat-treated to investigate the effect of tempering temperature on intergranular corrosion (IGC), while crevice and galvanic corrosion were studied by limiting the clearance of dissimilar couples. Tests were carried out in a neutral artificial cerebrospinal fluid (ACSF) and phosphate-buffered saline (PBS) under aeration and deaeration for 2 months. The composition of the passive films and metal ion release were analysed. The effect of galvanic coupling, pH, dissolved oxygen and anion species on corrosion rates and corrosion mechanisms are discussed based on quantitative and qualitative measurements. The results suggest that ACSF is more aggressive than PBS due to the combination of aggressive chlorides and sulphate anions, while phosphate in PBS acts as an inhibitor to delay corrosion. The presence of Vivianite on the SS surface in PBS lowered the corrosion rate (CR) more than 5 times for aeration and nearly 2 times for deaeration, compared with ACSF. The CR of 440C is dependent on passive film properties varied by tempering temperature and anion species. Although the CR of Ti6Al4V is insignificant, it tends to release more Ti ions in deaerated ACSF than under aeration, about 6 µg/L. It seems the crevice-like design has more effect on macroscopic corrosion than combining the dissimilar couple, whereas IGC is dominantly observed on sensitized microstructure.

University Curriculum Policy Processes in Chile: A Case Study

Located within the context of accelerating globalization in the 21st-century knowledge society, this paper focuses on one selected university in Chile at which radical curriculum policy changes have been taking place, diverging from the traditional curriculum in Chile at the undergraduate level as a section of a larger investigation. Using a ‘policy trajectory’ framework, and guided by the interpretivist approach to research, interview transcripts and institutional documents were analyzed in relation to the meso (university administration) and the micro (academics) level. Inside the case study, participants from the university administration and academic levels were selected both via snow-ball technique and purposive selection, thus they had different levels of seniority, with some participating actively in the curriculum reform processes. Guided by an interpretivist approach to research, documents and interview transcripts were analyzed to reveal major themes emerging from the data. A further ‘bigger picture’ analysis guided by critical theory was then undertaken, involving interrogation of underlying ideologies and how political and economic interests influence the cultural production of policy. The case-study university was selected because it represents a traditional and old case of university setting in the country, undergoing curriculum changes based on international trends such as the competency model and the liberal arts. Also, it is representative of a particular socioeconomic sector of the country. Access to the university was gained through email contact. Qualitative research methods were used, namely interviews and analysis of institutional documents. In all, 18 people were interviewed. The number was defined by when the saturation criterion was met. Semi-structured interview schedules were based on the four research questions about influences, policy texts, policy enactment and longer-term outcomes. Triangulation of information was used for the analysis. While there was no intention to generalize the specific findings of the case study, the results of the research were used as a focus for engagement with broader themes, often evident in global higher education policy developments. The research results were organized around major themes in three of the four contexts of the ‘policy trajectory’. Regarding the context of influences and the context of policy text production, themes relate to hegemony exercised by first world countries’ universities in the higher education field, its associated neoliberal ideology, with accountability and the discourse of continuous improvement, the local responses to those pressures, and the value of interdisciplinarity. Finally, regarding the context of policy practices and effects (enactment), themes emerged around the impacts of the curriculum changes on university staff, students, and resistance amongst academics. The research concluded with a few recommendations that potentially provide ‘food for thought’ beyond the localized settings of this study, as well as possibilities for further research.

A Conceptual Design of a Self-Centering Centre Plate

Turning maneuvers originate higher forces exerted on the rail and the loss of locomotive energy, at a rate that is function of several parameters that influence the magnitude of the developed horizontal wheel-rail forces, including the friction at the centre plate and the bogie´s yaw stiffness. However, such a friction at the contact surfaces of the centre plate is needed to mitigate the hunting phenomenon when the train moves on straight track segments. In this paper, a self-centering centre plate is proposed, consisting of a lubricated centre plate, equipped with a spring- and damper-based self-centering mechanism. Simulation results of the proposed mechanism suggest that the energy performance in turns of a train car equipped with such self-centering centre plate is comparatively better, as the peak friction forces linked to the dry friction at the contact surfaces of current centre plate designs, are avoided. The assessment of the hunting performance of the proposed device in straight track segments is proposed as the continuation of this work.

Mesoscopic Defects of Forming and Induced Properties on the Impact of a Composite Glass/Polyester

Forming processes induce residual deformations on the reinforcement and sometimes lead to mesoscopic defects, which are more recurrent than macroscopic defects during the manufacture of complex structural parts. This study deals with the influence of the fabric shear and buckles defects, which appear during draping processes of composite, on the impact behavior of a glass fiber reinforced polymer. To achieve this aim, we produced several specimens with different amplitude of deformations (shear) and defects on the fabric using a specific bench. The specimens were manufactured using the contact molding and tested with several impact energies. The results and measurements made on tested specimens were compared to those of the healthy material. The results showed that the buckle defects have a negative effect on elastic parameters and revealed a larger damage with significant out-of-plane mode relatively to the healthy composite material. This effect is the consequence of a local fiber impoverishment and a disorganization of the fibrous network, with a reorientation of the fibers following the out-of-plane buckling of the yarns, in the area where the defects are located. For the material with calibrated shear of the reinforcement, the increased local fiber rate due to the shear deformations and the contribution to stiffness of the transverse yarns led to an increase in mechanical properties.