International Science Index

146
10011731
Verification and Proposal of Information Processing Model Using EEG-Based Brain Activity Monitoring
Abstract:

Human beings perform a task by perceiving information from outside, recognizing them, and responding them. There have been various attempts to analyze and understand internal processes behind the reaction to a given stimulus by conducting psychological experiments and analysis from multiple perspectives. Among these, we focused on Model Human Processor (MHP). However, it was built based on psychological experiments and thus the relation with brain activity was unclear so far. To verify the validity of the MHP and propose our model from a viewpoint of neuroscience, EEG (Electroencephalography) measurements are performed during experiments in this study. More specifically, first, experiments were conducted where Latin alphabet characters were used as visual stimuli. In addition to response time, ERPs (event-related potentials) such as N100 and P300 were measured by using EEG. By comparing cycle time predicted by the MHP and latency of ERPs, it was found that N100, related to perception of stimuli, appeared at the end of the perceptual processor. Furthermore, by conducting an additional experiment, it was revealed that P300, related to decision making, appeared during the response decision process, not at the end. Second, by experiments using Japanese Hiragana characters, i.e. Japan's own phonetic symbols, those findings were confirmed. Finally, Japanese Kanji characters were used as more complicated visual stimuli. A Kanji character usually has several readings and several meanings. Despite the difference, a reading-related task and a meaning-related task exhibited similar results, meaning that they involved similar information processing processes of the brain. Based on those results, our model was proposed which reflects response time and ERP latency. It consists of three processors: the perception processor from an input of a stimulus to appearance of N100, the cognitive processor from N100 to P300, and the decision-action processor from P300 to response. Using our model, an application system which reflects brain activity can be established.

Paper Detail
127
downloads
145
10011627
Agritourism Potentials in Oman: An Overview with Visionary for Adoption
Abstract:
Most Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries with oil-based economy like Oman are looking for other potential revenue generation options as the crude oil price is regularly fluctuating due to changing geopolitical environment. Oman has advantage of possessing world-heritage nature tourism hotspots around the country and the government is making investments and strategies to uplift the tourism industry following Oman Vision 2040 strategies. Oman’s agriculture is not significantly contributing to the economy, but possesses specific and diversified arid cropping systems. Oman has modern farms; nevertheless some of the agricultural production activities are done with cultural practices and styles that would be attractive to tourists. The aim of this paper is to investigate the potentials for promoting agritourism industry in Oman; recognize potential sites, commodities and activities, and predict potential revenue generation as a projection from that of the tourism sector. Moreover, the study enables to foresee possible auxiliary advantages of agritourism such as, empowerment of women and youth, enhancement in the value-addition industry for agricultural produce through technology transfer and capacity building, and producing export quality products. Agritourism could increase employability, empowerment of women and youth, improve value-addition industry and export-oriented agribusiness. These efforts including provision of necessary technology-transfer and capacity-building should be rendered by the collaboration of academic institutions, relevant ministries and other public and private sector stakeholders.
Paper Detail
151
downloads
144
10011648
A Survey of WhatsApp as a Tool for Instructor-Learner Dialogue, Learner-Content Dialogue, and Learner-Learner Dialogue
Abstract:

Thanks to the development of online technology and social networks, people are able to communicate as well as learn. WhatsApp is a popular social network which is growingly gaining popularity. This app can be used for communication as well as education. It can be used for instructor-learner, learner-learner, and learner-content interactions; however, very little knowledge is available on these potentials of WhatsApp. The current study was undertaken to investigate university students’ perceptions of WhatsApp used as a tool for instructor-learner dialogue, learner-content dialogue, and learner-learner dialogue. The study adopted a survey approach and distributed the questionnaire developed by Google Forms to 54 (11 males and 43 females) university students. The obtained data were analyzed using SPSS version 20. The result of data analysis indicates that students have positive attitudes towards WhatsApp as a tool for Instructor-Learner Dialogue: it easy to reach the lecturer (4.07), the instructor gives me valuable feedback on my assignment (4.02), the instructor is supportive during course discussion and offers continuous support with the class (4.00). Learner-Content Dialogue: WhatsApp allows me to academically engage with lecturers anytime, anywhere (4.00), it helps to send graphics such as pictures or charts directly to the students (3.98), it also provides out of class, extra learning materials and homework (3.96), and Learner-Learner Dialogue: WhatsApp is a good tool for sharing knowledge with others (4.09), WhatsApp allows me to academically engage with peers anytime, anywhere (4.07), and we can interact with others through the use of group discussion (4.02). It was also found that there are significant positive correlations between students’ perceptions of Instructor-Learner Dialogue (ILD), Learner-Content Dialogue (LCD), Learner-Learner Dialogue (LLD) and WhatsApp Application in classroom. The findings of the study have implications for lectures, policy makers and curriculum developers.

Paper Detail
150
downloads
143
10011534
Spatial Planning and Tourism Development with Sustainability Model of the Territorial Tourist with Land Use Approach
Abstract:

In the last decade, with increasing tourism destinations and tourism growth, we are witnessing the widespread impacts of tourism on the economy, environment and society. Tourism and its related economy are now undergoing a transformation and as one of the key pillars of business economics, it plays a vital role in the world economy. Activities related to tourism and providing services appropriate to it in an area, like many economic sectors, require the necessary context on its origin. Given the importance of tourism industry and tourism potentials of Yazd province in Iran, it is necessary to use a proper procedure for prioritizing different areas for proper and efficient planning. One of the most important goals of planning is foresight and creating balanced development in different geographical areas. This process requires an accurate study of the areas and potential and actual talents, as well as evaluation and understanding of the relationship between the indicators affecting the development of the region. At the global and regional level, the development of tourist resorts and the proper distribution of tourism destinations are needed to counter environmental impacts and risks. The main objective of this study is the sustainable development of suitable tourism areas. Given that tourism activities in different territorial areas require operational zoning, this study deals with the evaluation of territorial tourism using concepts such as land use, fitness and sustainable development. It is essential to understand the structure of tourism development and the spatial development of tourism using land use patterns, spatial planning and sustainable development. Tourism spatial planning implements different approaches. However, the development of tourism as well as the spatial development of tourism is complex, since tourist activities can be carried out in different areas with different purposes. Multipurpose areas have great important for tourism because it determines the flow of tourism. Therefore, in this paper, by studying the development and determination of tourism suitability that is related to spatial development, it is possible to plan tourism spatial development by developing a model that describes the characteristics of tourism. The results of this research determine the suitability of multi-functional territorial tourism development in line with spatial planning of tourism.

Paper Detail
195
downloads
142
10010802
Total Organic Carbon, Porosity and Permeability Correlation: A Tool for Carbon Dioxide Storage Potential Evaluation in Irati Formation of the Parana Basin, Brazil
Abstract:

The correlation between Total Organic Carbon (TOC) and flow units have been carried out to predict and compare the carbon dioxide (CO2) storage potential of the shale and carbonate rocks in Irati Formation of the Parana Basin. The equations for permeability (K), reservoir quality index (RQI) and flow zone indicator (FZI) are redefined and engaged to evaluate the flow units in both potential reservoir rocks. Shales show higher values of TOC compared to carbonates, as such,  porosity (Ф) is most likely to be higher in shales compared to carbonates. The increase in Ф corresponds to the increase in K (in both rocks). Nonetheless, at lower values of Ф, K is higher in carbonates compared to shales. This shows that at lower values of TOC in carbonates, Ф is low, yet, K is likely to be high compared to shale. In the same vein, at higher values of TOC in shales, Ф is high, yet, K is expected to be low compared to carbonates.  Overall, the flow unit factors (RQI and FZI) are better in the carbonates compared to the shales. Moreso, within the study location,  there are some portions where the thicknesses of the carbonate units are higher compared to the shale units. Most parts of the carbonate strata in the study location are fractured in situ, hence,  this could provide easy access for the storage of CO2. Therefore, based on these points and the disparities between the flow units in the evaluated rock types, the carbonate units are expected to show better potentials for the storage of CO2. The shale units may be considered as potential cap rocks or seals.

Paper Detail
307
downloads
141
10010307
Some Issues of Measurement of Impairment of Non-Financial Assets in the Public Sector
Abstract:

The economic value of the asset impairment process is quite large. Impairment reflects the reduction of future economic benefits or service potentials itemized in the asset. The assets owned by public sector entities bring economic benefits or are used for delivery of the free-of-charge services. Consequently, they are classified as cash-generating and non-cash-generating assets. IPSAS 21 - Impairment of non-cash-generating assets, and IPSAS 26 - Impairment of cash-generating assets, have been designed considering this specificity.  When measuring impairment of assets, it is important to select the relevant methods. For measurement of the impaired Non-Cash-Generating Assets, IPSAS 21 recommends three methods: Depreciated Replacement Cost Approach, Restoration Cost Approach, and  Service Units Approach. Impairment of Value in Use of Cash-Generating Assets (according to IPSAS 26) is measured by discounted value of the money sources to be received in future. Value in use of the cash-generating asserts (as per IPSAS 26) is measured by the discounted value of the money sources to be received in the future. The article provides classification of the assets in the public sector  as non-cash-generating assets and cash-generating assets and, deals also with the factors which should be considered when evaluating  impairment of assets. An essence of impairment of the non-financial assets and the methods of measurement thereof evaluation are formulated according to IPSAS 21 and IPSAS 26. The main emphasis is put on different methods of measurement of the value in use of the impaired Cash-Generating Assets and Non-Cash-Generation Assets and the methods of their selection. The traditional and the expected cash flow approaches for calculation of the discounted value are reviewed. The article also discusses the issues of recognition of impairment loss and its reflection in the financial reporting. The article concludes that despite a functional purpose of the impaired asset, whichever method is used for measuring the asset, presentation of realistic information regarding the value of the assets should be ensured in the financial reporting. In the theoretical development of the issue, the methods of scientific abstraction, analysis and synthesis were used. The research was carried out with a systemic approach. The research process uses international standards of accounting, theoretical researches and publications of Georgian and foreign scientists.

Paper Detail
306
downloads
140
10010345
The Democratization of 3D Capturing: An Application Investigating Google Tango Potentials
Abstract:

The appearance of 3D scanners and then, more recently, of image-based systems that generate point clouds directly from common digital images have deeply affected the survey process in terms of both capturing and 2D/3D modelling. In this context, low cost and mobile systems are increasingly playing a key role and actually paving the way to the democratization of what in the past was the realm of few specialized technicians and expensive equipment. The application of Google Tango on the ancient church of Santa Maria delle Vigne in Pratica di Mare – Rome presented in this paper is one of these examples.

Paper Detail
318
downloads
139
10010234
Study of Intergranular Corrosion in Austenitic Stainless Steels Using Electrochemical Impedance Spectroscopy
Abstract:

Electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) has been used to detect sensitization in austenitic stainless steels that are heat treated in the temperature regime 600-820 °C to produce different degrees of sensitization in the material. The tests were conducted at five different DC potentials in the transpassive region. The quantitative determination of degree of sensitization has been done using double loop electrochemical potentiokinetic reactivation tests (DL-EPR). The correlation between EIS Nyquist diagrams and DL-EPR degree of sensitization values has been studied. The EIS technique can be used as a qualitative tool in determining the intergranular corrosion in austenitic stainless steels that are heat treated at a given temperature.

Paper Detail
383
downloads
138
10009861
Reinvestment of the Urban Context in Historic Cities: The Case Study of El Sheikh Kandil Street, Rosetta, Egypt
Abstract:

Conservation and urban investment are a prerequisite to improve the quality of life. Since the historic street is a part of the economic system, it should be able to play an important role in the city development by upgrading all services, public open spaces and reuse of historical buildings and sites. Furthermore, historical conservation enriches the political, economic, social, cultural and functional aspects of the site. Rosetta has been selected as an area of study because it has a unique character due to its possession of a variety of monuments and historical buildings. The aim of this research is to analyze the existing situation of an historic street named El Sheikh Kandil, to be able to identify the potentials and problems. The paper gives a proposal for the redesign and reinvestment of the street and the reuse for the historical buildings to serve the community, users and visitors. Then, it concludes with recommendations to improve quality of life through the rehabilitation of the historical buildings and strengthening of the cultural and historical identity of the street. Rosetta city can benefit from these development proposals by preserving and revitalizing its unique character which leads to tourism development and benefits from the new investments.

Paper Detail
603
downloads
137
10009759
Prospects of Iraq’s Maritime Openness and Their Effect on Its Economy
Abstract:

Port institutions serve as a link connecting the land areas that receive the goods and the areas from where ships sail. These areas hold great significance for the conversion of goods into commodities of economic value, capable of meeting the needs of the society. Development of ports constitutes a fundamental component of the comprehensive economic development process. Recognizing this fact, developing countries have always resorted to this infrastructural element to resolve the numerous problems they face, taking into account its contribution to the reformation of their economic conditions. Iraqi ports have played a major role in boosting the commercial movement in Iraq, as they are the starting point of its oil exports and a key constituent in fulfilling the consumer and production needs of the various economic sectors of Iraq. With the Gulf wars and the economic blockade, Iraqi ports have continued to deteriorate and become unable to perform their functions as first-generation ports, prompting Iraq to use the ports of neighboring countries such as Jordan's Aqaba commercial port. Meanwhile, Iraqi ports face strong competition from the ports of neighboring countries, which have achieved progress and advancement as opposed to the declining performance and efficiency of Iraqi ports. The great developments in the economic conditions of Iraq lay a too great burden on the Iraqi maritime transport and ports, which require development in order to be able to meet the challenges arising from the fierce international and regional competition in the markets. Therefore, it is necessary to find appropriate solutions in support of the role that can be played by Iraqi ports in serving Iraq's foreign trade transported by sea and in keeping up with the development of foreign trade. Thus, this research aims at tackling the current situation of the Iraqi ports and their commercial activity and studying the problems and obstacles they face. The research also studies the future prospects of these ports, the potentials of maritime openness to Iraq under the fierce competition of neighboring ports, and the possibility of enhancing Iraqi ports’ competitiveness. Among the results produced by this research is the future scenario it proposes for Iraqi ports, mainly represented in the establishment of Al-Faw Port, which will contribute to a greater openness of maritime transport in Iraq, and the rehabilitation and expansion of existing ports. This research seeks to develop solutions to Iraq ports so that they can be repositioned as a vital means of promoting economic development.

Paper Detail
422
downloads
136
10009816
A Review on Building Information Modelling in Nigeria and Its Potentials
Abstract:

Construction Industry has been evolving since the development of Building Information Modelling (BIM). This technological process is unstoppable; it is out to the market with remarkable case studies of solving the long industry’s history of fragmentation. This industry has been changing over time; United States has recorded the most significant development in construction digitalization, Australia, United Kingdom and some other developed nations are also amongst promoters of BIM process and its development. Recently, a developing country like China and Malaysia are keying into the industry’s digital shift, while very little move is seen in South Africa whose development is considered higher and perhaps leader in the digital transition amongst the African countries. To authors’ best knowledge, Nigerian construction industry has never engaged in BIM discussions hence has no attention at national level. Consequently, Nigeria has no “Noteworthy BIM publications.” Decision makers and key stakeholders need to be informed on the current trend of the industry’s development (BIM in specific) and the opportunities of adopting this digitalization trend in relation to the identified challenges. BIM concept can be traced mostly in Architectural practices than engineering practices in Nigeria. A superficial BIM practice is found to be at organisational level only and operating a model based - “BIM stage 1.” Research to adopting this innovation has received very little attention. This piece of work is literature review based, aimed at exploring BIM in Nigeria and its prospects. The exploration reveals limitations in the literature availability as to extensive research in the development of BIM in the country. Numerous challenges were noticed including building collapse, inefficiencies, cost overrun and late project delivery. BIM has potentials to overcome the above challenges and even beyond. Low level of BIM adoption with reasonable level of awareness is noticed. However, lack of policy and guideline as well as serious lack of experts in the field are amongst the major barriers to BIM adoption. The industry needs to embrace BIM to possibly compete with its global counterpart.

Paper Detail
829
downloads
135
10009307
Oscillatory Electroosmotic Flow of Power-Law Fluids in a Microchannel
Abstract:
The Oscillatory electroosmotic flow (OEOF) in power law fluids through a microchannel is studied numerically. A time-dependent external electric field (AC) is suddenly imposed at the ends of the microchannel which induces the fluid motion. The continuity and momentum equations in the x and y direction for the flow field were simplified in the limit of the lubrication approximation theory (LAT), and then solved using a numerical scheme. The solution of the electric potential is based on the Debye-H¨uckel approximation which suggest that the surface potential is small,say, smaller than 0.025V and for a symmetric (z : z) electrolyte. Our results suggest that the velocity profiles across the channel-width are controlled by the following dimensionless parameters: the angular Reynolds number, Reω, the electrokinetic parameter, ¯κ, defined as the ratio of the characteristic length scale to the Debye length, the parameter λ which represents the ratio of the Helmholtz-Smoluchowski velocity to the characteristic length scale and the flow behavior index, n. Also, the results reveal that the velocity profiles become more and more non-uniform across the channel-width as the Reω and ¯κ are increased, so oscillatory OEOF can be really useful in micro-fluidic devices such as micro-mixers.
Paper Detail
418
downloads
134
10009324
3D Numerical Investigation of Asphalt Pavements Behaviour Using Infinite Elements
Abstract:

This article presents the main results of three-dimensional (3-D) numerical investigation of asphalt pavement structures behaviour using a coupled Finite Element-Mapped Infinite Element (FE-MIE) model. The validation and numerical performance of this model are assessed by confronting critical pavement responses with Burmister’s solution and FEM simulation results for multi-layered elastic structures. The coupled model is then efficiently utilised to perform 3-D simulations of a typical asphalt pavement structure in order to investigate the impact of two tire configurations (conventional dual and new generation wide-base tires) on critical pavement response parameters. The numerical results obtained show the effectiveness and the accuracy of the coupled (FE-MIE) model. In addition, the simulation results indicate that, compared with conventional dual tire assembly, single wide base tire caused slightly greater fatigue asphalt cracking and subgrade rutting potentials and can thus be utilised in view of its potential to provide numerous mechanical, economic, and environmental benefits.

Paper Detail
406
downloads
133
10009226
The Politics of Foreign Direct Investment for Socio-Economic Development in Nigeria: An Assessment of the Fourth Republic Strategies (1999 - 2014)
Abstract:

In the contemporary global political economy, foreign direct investment (FDI) is gaining currency on daily basis. Notably, the end of the Cold War has brought about the dominance of neoliberal ideology with its mantra of private-sector-led economy. As such, nation-states now see FDI attraction as an important element in their approach to national development. Governments and policy makers are preoccupying themselves with unraveling the best strategies to not only attract more FDI but also to attain the desired socio-economic development status. In Nigeria, the perceived development potentials of FDI have brought about aggressive hunt for foreign investors, most especially since transition to civilian rule in May 1999. Series of liberal and market oriented strategies are being adopted not only to attract foreign investors but largely to stimulate private sector participation in the economy. It is on this premise that this study interrogates the politics of FDI attraction for domestic development in Nigeria between 1999 and 2014, with the ultimate aim of examining the nexus between regime type and the ability of a state to attract and benefit from FDI. Building its analysis within the framework of institutional utilitarianism, the study posits that the essential FDI strategies for achieving the greatest happiness for the greatest number of Nigerians are political not economic. Both content analysis and descriptive survey methodology were employed in carrying out the study. Content analysis involves desk review of literatures that culminated in the development of the study’s conceptual and theoretical framework of analysis. The study finds no significant relationship between transition to democracy and FDI inflows in Nigeria, as most of the attracted investments during the period of the study were market and resource seeking as was the case during the military regime, thereby contributing minimally to the socio-economic development of the country. It is also found that the country placed much emphasis on liberalization and incentives for FDI attraction at the neglect of improving the domestic investment environment. Consequently, poor state of infrastructure, weak institutional capability and insecurity were identified as the major factors seriously hindering the success of Nigeria in exploiting FDI for domestic development. Given the reality of the currency of FDI as a vector of economic globalization and that Nigeria is trailing the line of private-sector-led approach to development, it is recommended that emphasis should be placed on those measures aimed at improving the infrastructural facilities, building solid institutional framework, enhancing skill and technological transfer and coordinating FDI promotion activities by different agencies and at different levels of government.

Paper Detail
454
downloads
132
10009163
Experimental Investigation of Visual Comfort Requirement in Garment Factories and Identify the Cost Saving Opportunities
Abstract:

Visual comfort is one of the major parameters that can be taken to measure the human comfort in any environment. If the provided illuminance level in a working environment does not meet the workers visual comfort, it will lead to eye-strain, fatigue, headache, stress, accidents and finally, poor productivity. However, improvements in lighting do not necessarily mean that the workplace requires more light. Unnecessarily higher illuminance levels will also cause poor visual comfort and health risks. In addition, more power consumption on lighting will also result in higher energy costs. So, during this study, visual comfort and the illuminance requirement for the workers in textile/apparel industry were studied to perform different tasks (i.e. cutting, sewing and knitting) at their workplace. Experimental studies were designed to identify the optimum illuminance requirement depending upon the varied fabric colour and type and finally, energy saving potentials due to controlled illuminance level depending on the workforce requirement were analysed. Visual performance of workers during the sewing operation was studied using the ‘landolt ring experiment’. It was revealed that around 36.3% of the workers would like to work if the illuminance level varies from 601 lux to 850 lux illuminance level and 45.9% of the workers are not happy to work if the illuminance level reduces less than 600 lux and greater than 850 lux. Moreover, more than 65% of the workers who do not satisfy with the existing illuminance levels of the production floors suggested that they have headache, eye diseases, or both diseases due to poor visual comfort. In addition, findings of the energy analysis revealed that the energy-saving potential of 5%, 10%, 24%, 8% and 16% can be anticipated for fabric colours, red, blue, yellow, black and white respectively, when the 800 lux is the prevailing illuminance level for sewing operation.

Paper Detail
458
downloads
131
10009224
Applying the Integrative Design Process in Architectural Firms: An Analytical Study on Egyptian Firms
Abstract:

An architect carrying the design process alone is the main reason for the deterioration of the quality of the architectural product as the complexity of the projects makes it a multi-disciplinary work; then, the Integrative Design Process (IDP) must be applied in the architectural firm especially from the early design phases to improve the product’s quality and to eliminate the ignorance of the principles of design causing the occurrence of low-grade buildings. The research explores the Integrative Design (ID) principles that fit in the architectural practice. Constraints facing this application are presented with strategies and solutions to overcome them. A survey questionnaire was conducted to collect data from a number of recognized Egyptian Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC) firms that explores their opinions on using the IDP. This survey emphasizes the importance of the IDP in firms and presents the reasons preventing the firms from applying the IDP. The aim here is to investigate the potentials of integrating this approach into architectural firms emphasizing the importance of this application which ensures the realization of the project’s goal and eliminates the reduction in the project’s quality.

Paper Detail
392
downloads
130
10009387
Research Action Fields at the Nexus of Digital Transformation and Supply Chain Management: Findings from Practitioner Focus Group Workshops
Abstract:

Logistics and Supply Chain Management are of crucial importance for organisational success. In the era of Digitalization, several implications and improvement potentials for these domains arise, which at the same time could lead to decreased competitiveness and could endanger long-term company success if ignored or neglected. However, empirical research on the issue of Digitalization and benefits purported to it by practitioners is scarce and mainly focused on single technologies or separate, isolated Supply Chain blocks as e.g. distribution logistics or procurement only. The current paper applies a holistic focus group approach to elaborate practitioner use cases at the nexus of the concepts of Supply Chain Management (SCM) and Digitalization. In the course of three focus group workshops with over 45 participants from more than 20 organisations, a comprehensive set of benefit entitlements and areas for improvement in terms of applying digitalization to SCM is developed. The main results of the paper indicate the relevance of Digitalization being realized in practice. In the form of seventeen concrete research action fields, the benefit entitlements are aggregated and transformed into potential starting points for future research projects in this area. The main contribution of this paper is an empirically grounded basis for future research projects and an overview of actual research action fields from practitioners’ point of view.

Paper Detail
416
downloads
129
10008793
Application of Stabilized Polyaniline Microparticles for Better Protective Ability of Zinc Coatings
Abstract:

Coatings based on polyaniline (PANI) can improve the resistance of steel against corrosion. In this work, the preparation of stable suspensions of colloidal PANI-SiO2 particles, suitable for obtaining of composite anticorrosive coating on steel, is described. Electrokinetic data as a function of pH are presented, showing that the zeta potentials of the PANI-SiO2 particles are governed primarily by the charged groups at the silica oxide surface. Electrosteric stabilization of the PANI-SiO2 particles’ suspension against aggregation is realized at pH>5.5 (EB form of PANI) by adsorption of positively charged polyelectrolyte molecules onto negatively charged PANI-SiO2 particles. The PANI-SiO2 particles are incorporated by electrodeposition into the metal matrix of zinc in order to obtain composite (hybrid) coatings. The latter are aimed to ensure sacrificial protection of steel mainly in aggressive media leading to local corrosion damages. The surface morphology of the composite zinc coatings is investigated with SEM. The influence of PANI-SiO2 particles on the cathodic and anodic processes occurring in the starting electrolyte for obtaining of the coatings is followed with cyclic voltammetry. The electrochemical and corrosion behavior is evaluated with potentiodynamic polarization curves and polarization resistance measurements. The beneficial effect of the stabilized PANI-SiO2 particles for the increased protective ability of the composites is commented and discussed.

Paper Detail
509
downloads
128
10008552
Generation of Electro-Encephalography Readiness Potentials by Intention
Abstract:

The readiness potential in brain waves is a brain activity related with an intention whose potential arises even before its conscious intention. This study was carried out in order to understand the generation and mechanism of the readiness potential more. The experiment with two subjects was conducted in two ways following the Oddball task protocol. Firstly, auditory stimuli were randomly presented to the subjects. The subject was allowed to press the keyboard with the right index finger only when the subject heard the target stimulus but not the standard stimulus. Secondly, unlike the first one, the auditory stimuli were randomly presented, and the subjects pressed the keyboard in the same manner, but at the same time with grasping action of the left hand. The readiness potential showed up for both of these experiments. In the first Oddball experiment, the readiness potential was detected only when the target stimulus was presented. However, in the second Oddball experiment with the left hand action of grasping something, the readiness potential was detected at the presentation of for both standard and target stimuli. However, detected readiness potentials with the target stimuli were larger than those of the standard stimuli. We found an interesting phenomenon that the readiness potential was able to be detected even the standard stimulus. This indicates that motor-related readiness potentials can be generated only by the intention to move. These results present a new perspective in psychology and brain engineering since subconscious brain action may be prior to conscious recognition of the intention.

Paper Detail
522
downloads
127
10008281
All-or-None Principle and Weakness of Hodgkin-Huxley Mathematical Model
Abstract:

Mathematical and computational modellings are the necessary tools for reviewing, analysing, and predicting processes and events in the wide spectrum range of scientific fields. Therefore, in a field as rapidly developing as neuroscience, the combination of these two modellings can have a significant role in helping to guide the direction the field takes. The paper combined mathematical and computational modelling to prove a weakness in a very precious model in neuroscience. This paper is intended to analyse all-or-none principle in Hodgkin-Huxley mathematical model. By implementation the computational model of Hodgkin-Huxley model and applying the concept of all-or-none principle, an investigation on this mathematical model has been performed. The results clearly showed that the mathematical model of Hodgkin-Huxley does not observe this fundamental law in neurophysiology to generating action potentials. This study shows that further mathematical studies on the Hodgkin-Huxley model are needed in order to create a model without this weakness.

Paper Detail
813
downloads
126
10008420
Risk Assessment for Aerial Package Delivery
Abstract:

Recent developments in unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) have begun to attract intense interest. UAVs started to use for many different applications from military to civilian use. Some online retailer and logistics companies are testing the UAV delivery. UAVs have great potentials to reduce cost and time of deliveries and responding to emergencies in a short time. Despite these great positive sides, just a few works have been done for routing of UAVs for package deliveries. As known, transportation of goods from one place to another may have many hazards on delivery route due to falling hazards that can be exemplified as ground objects or air obstacles. This situation refers to wide-range insurance concept. For this reason, deliveries that are made with drones get into the scope of shipping insurance. On the other hand, air traffic was taken into account in the absence of unmanned aerial vehicle. But now, it has been a reality for aerial fields. In this study, the main goal is to conduct risk analysis of package delivery services using drone, based on delivery routes.

Paper Detail
1251
downloads
125
10007521
Schrödinger Equation with Position-Dependent Mass: Staggered Mass Distributions
Abstract:

The Point canonical transformation method is applied for solving the Schrödinger equation with position-dependent mass. This class of problem has been solved for continuous mass distributions. In this work, a staggered mass distribution for the case of a free particle in an infinite square well potential has been proposed. The continuity conditions as well as normalization for the wave function are also considered. The proposal can be used for dealing with other kind of staggered mass distributions in the Schrödinger equation with different quantum potentials.

Paper Detail
917
downloads
124
10007636
A Study on the Impacts of Computer Aided Design on the Architectural Design Process
Abstract:

Computer-aided design (CAD) tools have been extensively used by the architects for the several decades. It has evolved from being a simple drafting tool to being an intelligent architectural software and a powerful means of communication for architects. CAD plays an essential role in the profession of architecture and is a basic tool for any architectural firm. It is not possible for an architectural firm to compete without taking the advantage of computer software, due to the high demand and competition in the architectural industry. The aim of this study is to evaluate the impacts of CAD on the architectural design process from conceptual level to final product, particularly in architectural practice. It examines the range of benefits of integrating CAD into the industry and discusses the possible defects limiting the architects. Method of this study is qualitatively based on data collected from the professionals’ perspective. The identified benefits and limitations of CAD on the architectural design process will raise the awareness of professionals on the potentials of CAD and proper utilization of that in the industry, which would result in a higher productivity along with a better quality in the architectural offices.

Paper Detail
1194
downloads
123
10007718
Laboratory Investigations on the Utilization of Recycled Construction Aggregates in Asphalt Mixtures
Abstract:

Road networks are increasingly expanding all over the world. The construction and maintenance of the road pavements require large amounts of aggregates. Considerable usage of various natural aggregates for constructing roads as well as the increasing rate at which solid waste is generated have attracted the attention of many researchers in the pavement industry to investigate the feasibility of the application of some of the waste materials as alternative materials in pavement construction. Among various waste materials, construction and demolition wastes, including Recycled Construction Aggregate (RCA) constitute a major part of the municipal solid wastes in Australia. Creating opportunities for the application of RCA in civil and geotechnical engineering applications is an efficient way to increase the market value of RCA. However, in spite of such promising potentials, insufficient and inconclusive data and information on the engineering properties of RCA had limited the reliability and design specifications of RCA to date. In light of this, this paper, as a first step of a comprehensive research, aims to investigate the feasibility of the application of RCA obtained from construction and demolition wastes for the replacement of part of coarse aggregates in asphalt mixture. As the suitability of aggregates for using in asphalt mixtures is determined based on the aggregate characteristics, including physical and mechanical properties of the aggregates, an experimental program is set up to evaluate the physical and mechanical properties of RCA. This laboratory investigation included the measurement of compressive strength and workability of RCA, particle shape, water absorption, flakiness index, crushing value, deleterious materials and weak particles, wet/dry strength variation, and particle density. In addition, the comparison of RCA properties with virgin aggregates has been included as part of this investigation and this paper presents the results of these investigations on RCA, basalt, and the mix of RCA/basalt.

Paper Detail
592
downloads
122
10007502
Fiber-Reinforced Sandwich Structures Based on Selective Laser Sintering: A Technological View
Abstract:

The demand for an increasing diversification of the product spectrum associated with the current huge customization desire and subsequently the decreasing unit quantities of each production lot is gaining more and more importance within a great variety of industrial branches, e.g. automotive industry. Nevertheless, traditional product development and production processes (molding, extrusion) are already reaching their limits or fail to address these trends of a flexible and digitized production in view of a product variability up to lot size one. Thus, upcoming innovative production concepts like the additive manufacturing technology basically create new opportunities with regard to extensive potentials in product development (constructive optimization) and manufacturing (economic individualization), but mostly suffer from insufficient strength regarding structural components. Therefore, this contribution presents an innovative technological and procedural conception of a hybrid additive manufacturing process (fiber-reinforced sandwich structures based on selective laser sintering technology) to overcome these current structural weaknesses, and consequently support the design of complex lightweight components.

Paper Detail
781
downloads
121
10007569
Preparation of Polymer-Stabilized Magnetic Iron Oxide as Selective Drug Nanocarriers to Human Acute Myeloid Leukemia
Abstract:

Drug delivery to target human acute myeloid leukemia (AML) using a nanoparticulate chemotherapeutic formulation that can deliver drugs selectively to AML cancer is hugely needed. In this work, we report the development of a nanoformulation made of polymeric-stabilized multifunctional magnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (PMNP) loaded with the anticancer drug Doxorubicin (Dox) as a promising drug carrier to treat AML. Dox@PMNP conjugates simultaneously exhibited high drug content, maximized fluorescence, and excellent release properties. Nanoparticulate uptake and cell death following addition of Dox@PMNPs were then evaluated in different types of human AML target cells, as well as on normal human cells. While the unloaded MNPs were not toxic to any of the cells, Dox@PMNPs were found to be highly toxic to the different AML cell lines, albeit at different inhibitory concentrations (IC50 values), but showed very little toxicity towards the normal cells. In comparison, free Dox showed significant potency concurrently to all the cell lines, suggesting huge potentials for the use of Dox@PMNPs as selective AML anticancer cargos. Live confocal imaging, fluorescence and electron microscopy confirmed that Dox is indeed delivered to the nucleus in relatively short periods of time, causing apoptotic cell death. Importantly, this targeted payload may potentially enhance the effectiveness of the drug in AML patients and may further allow physicians to image leukemic cells exposed to Dox@PMNPs using MRI.

Paper Detail
713
downloads
120
10007868
Potentials and Influencing Factors of Dynamic Pricing in Business: Empirical Insights of European Experts
Abstract:
With a continuously increasing speed of information exchange on the World Wide Web, retailers in the E-Commerce sector are faced with immense possibilities regarding different online purchase processes like dynamic price settings. By use of Dynamic Pricing, retailers are able to set short time price changes in order to optimize producer surplus. The empirical research illustrates the basics of Dynamic Pricing and identifies six influencing factors of Dynamic Pricing. The results of a structural equation modeling approach show five main drivers increasing the potential of dynamic price settings in the E-Commerce. Influencing factors are the knowledge of customers’ individual willingness to pay, rising sales, the possibility of customization, the data volume and the information about competitors’ pricing strategy.
Paper Detail
992
downloads
119
10007080
Creating Smart and Healthy Cities by Exploring the Potentials of Emerging Technologies and Social Innovation for Urban Efficiency: Lessons from the Innovative City of Boston
Abstract:

The wide-spread adoption of the Smart City concept has introduced a new era of computing paradigm with opportunities for city administrators and stakeholders in various sectors to re-think the concept of urbanization and development of healthy cities. With the world population rapidly becoming urban-centric especially amongst the emerging economies, social innovation will assist greatly in deploying emerging technologies to address the development challenges in core sectors of the future cities. In this context, sustainable health-care delivery and improved quality of life of the people is considered at the heart of the healthy city agenda. This paper examines the Boston innovation landscape from the perspective of smart services and innovation ecosystem for sustainable development, especially in transportation and healthcare. It investigates the policy implementation process of the Healthy City agenda and eHealth economy innovation based on the experience of Massachusetts’s City of Boston initiatives. For this purpose, three emerging areas are emphasized, namely the eHealth concept, the innovation hubs, and the emerging technologies that drive innovation. This was carried out through empirical analysis on results of public sector and industry-wide interviews/survey about Boston’s current initiatives and the enabling environment. The paper highlights few potential research directions for service integration and social innovation for deploying emerging technologies in the healthy city agenda. The study therefore suggests the need to prioritize social innovation as an overarching strategy to build sustainable Smart Cities in order to avoid technology lock-in. Finally, it concludes that the Boston example of innovation economy is unique in view of the existing platforms for innovation and proper understanding of its dynamics, which is imperative in building smart and healthy cities where quality of life of the citizenry can be improved.

Paper Detail
956
downloads
118
10006713
Robot Navigation and Localization Based on the Rat’s Brain Signals
Abstract:
The mobile robot ability to navigate autonomously in its environment is very important. Even though the advances in technology, robot self-localization and goal directed navigation in complex environments are still challenging tasks. In this article, we propose a novel method for robot navigation based on rat’s brain signals (Local Field Potentials). It has been well known that rats accurately and rapidly navigate in a complex space by localizing themselves in reference to the surrounding environmental cues. As the first step to incorporate the rat’s navigation strategy into the robot control, we analyzed the rats’ strategies while it navigates in a multiple Y-maze, and recorded Local Field Potentials (LFPs) simultaneously from three brain regions. Next, we processed the LFPs, and the extracted features were used as an input in the artificial neural network to predict the rat’s next location, especially in the decision-making moment, in Y-junctions. We developed an algorithm by which the robot learned to imitate the rat’s decision-making by mapping the rat’s brain signals into its own actions. Finally, the robot learned to integrate the internal states as well as external sensors in order to localize and navigate in the complex environment.
Paper Detail
1071
downloads
117
10006174
sEMG Interface Design for Locomotion Identification
Abstract:
Surface electromyographic (sEMG) signal has the potential to identify the human activities and intention. This potential is further exploited to control the artificial limbs using the sEMG signal from residual limbs of amputees. The paper deals with the development of multichannel cost efficient sEMG signal interface for research application, along with evaluation of proposed class dependent statistical approach of the feature selection method. The sEMG signal acquisition interface was developed using ADS1298 of Texas Instruments, which is a front-end interface integrated circuit for ECG application. Further, the sEMG signal is recorded from two lower limb muscles for three locomotions namely: Plane Walk (PW), Stair Ascending (SA), Stair Descending (SD). A class dependent statistical approach is proposed for feature selection and also its performance is compared with 12 preexisting feature vectors. To make the study more extensive, performance of five different types of classifiers are compared. The outcome of the current piece of work proves the suitability of the proposed feature selection algorithm for locomotion recognition, as compared to other existing feature vectors. The SVM Classifier is found as the outperformed classifier among compared classifiers with an average recognition accuracy of 97.40%. Feature vector selection emerges as the most dominant factor affecting the classification performance as it holds 51.51% of the total variance in classification accuracy. The results demonstrate the potentials of the developed sEMG signal acquisition interface along with the proposed feature selection algorithm.
Paper Detail
1080
downloads