This paper presents a wearable reconfigurable supernumerary robotic limb with differential actuated joints, which is lightweight, compact and comfortable for the wearers. Compared to the existing supernumerary robotic limbs which mostly adopted series structure with large movement space but poor carrying capacity, a prototype with the series-parallel configuration to better adapt to different task requirements has been developed in this design. To achieve a compact structure, two kinds of cable-driven mechanical structures based on guide pulleys and differential actuated joints were designed. Moreover, two different tension devices were also designed to ensure the reliability and accuracy of the cable-driven transmission. The proposed device also employed self-designed bearings which greatly simplified the structure and reduced the cost.
Interest in natural fiber-reinforced composites (NFRC) is progressively growing both in terms of academia research and industrial applications thanks to their abundant advantages such as low cost, biodegradability, eco-friendly nature and relatively good mechanical properties. However, their widespread use is still presumed as challenging because of the specificity of their non-homogeneous structure, limited knowledge on their machinability characteristics and parameter settings, to avoid defects associated with the machining process. The present work is aimed to investigate the effect of the cutting tool geometry and material on the drilling-induced delamination, thrust force and hole quality produced when drilling a fully biodegradable flax/poly (lactic acid) composite laminate. Three drills with different geometries and material were used at different drilling conditions to evaluate the machinability of the fabricated composites. The experimental results indicated that the choice of cutting tool, in terms of material and geometry, has a noticeable influence on the cutting thrust force and subsequently drilling-induced damages. The lower value of thrust force and better hole quality was observed using high-speed steel (HSS) drill, whereas Carbide drill (with point angle of 130o) resulted in the highest value of thrust force. Carbide drill presented higher wear resistance and stability in variation of thrust force with a number of holes drilled, while HSS drill showed the lower value of thrust force during the drilling process. Finally, within the selected cutting range, the delamination damage increased noticeably with feed rate and moderately with spindle speed.
The laser based high resolution spectroscopic experimental techniques such as Laser Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy (LIBS), Rotating Disk Electrode Optical Emission spectroscopy (RDE-OES) and Surface Plasmon Resonance (SPR) have been used for the study of composition and degradation analysis of used engine oils. Engine oils are mainly composed of aliphatic and aromatics compounds and its soot contains hazardous components in the form of fine, coarse and ultrafine particles consisting of wear metal elements. Such coarse particulates matter (PM) and toxic elements are extremely dangerous for human health that can cause respiratory and genetic disorder in humans. The combustible soot from thermal power plants, industry, aircrafts, ships and vehicles can lead to the environmental and climate destabilization. It contributes towards global pollution for land, water, air and global warming for environment. The detection of such toxicants in the form of elemental analysis is a very serious issue for the waste material management of various organic, inorganic hydrocarbons and radioactive waste elements. In view of such important points, the current study on used engine oils was performed. The fundamental characterization of engine oils was conducted by measuring water content and kinematic viscosity test that proves the crude analysis of the degradation of used engine oils samples. The microscopic quantitative and qualitative analysis was presented by RDE-OES technique which confirms the presence of elemental impurities of Pb, Al, Cu, Si, Fe, Cr, Na and Ba lines for used waste engine oil samples in few ppm. The presence of such elemental impurities was confirmed by LIBS spectral analysis at various transition levels of atomic line. The recorded transition line of Pb confirms the maximum degradation which was found in used engine oil sample no. 3 and 4. Apart from the basic tests, the calculations for dielectric constants and refractive index of the engine oils were performed via SPR analysis.
In the recent years, aluminum metal matrix composites were most widely used, which are finding wide applications in various field such as automobile, aerospace defense etc., due to their outstanding mechanical properties like low density, light weight, exceptional high levels of strength, stiffness, wear resistance, high temperature resistance, low coefficient of thermal expansion and good formability. In the present work, an effort is made to study the effect of heat treatment on mechanical properties of aluminum 7075 alloy reinforced with constant weight percentage of naturally occurring mineral beryl and varying weight percentage of graphene. The hybrid composites are developed with 0.5 wt. %, 1wt.%, 1.5 wt.% and 2 wt.% of graphene and 6 wt.% of beryl by stir casting liquid metallurgy route. The cast specimens of unreinforced aluminum alloy and hybrid composite samples were prepared for heat treatment process and subjected to solutionizing treatment (T6) at a temperature of 490±5 oC for 8 hours in a muffle furnace followed by quenching in boiling water. The microstructure analysis of as cast and heat treated hybrid composite specimens are examined by scanning electron microscope (SEM). The tensile test and hardness test of unreinforced aluminum alloy and hybrid composites are examined. The wear behavior is examined by pin-on disc apparatus. The results of as cast specimens and heat treated specimens were compared. The heat treated Al7075-Beryl-Graphene hybrid composite had better properties and significantly improved the ultimate tensile strength, hardness and reduced wear loss when compared to aluminum alloy and as cast hybrid composites.
The hardness-microstructure relationships of spherical cementite in bainitic matrix obtained by a different heat treatment cycles carried out to high carbon powder metallurgy (P/M) steel were investigated. For this purpose, 1.5 wt.% natural graphite powder admixed in atomized iron powders and the mixed powders were compacted under 700 MPa at room temperature and then sintered at 1150 °C under a protective argon gas atmosphere. The densities of the green and sintered samples were measured via the Archimedes method. A density of 7.4 g/cm3 was obtained after sintering and a density of 94% was achieved. The sintered specimens having primary cementite plus lamellar pearlitic structures were fully quenched from 950 °C temperature and then over-tempered at 705 °C temperature for 60 minutes to produce spherical-fine cementite particles in the ferritic matrix. After by this treatment, these samples annealed at 735 °C temperature for 3 minutes were austempered at 300 °C salt bath for a period of 1 to 5 hours. As a result of this process, it could be able to produced spherical cementite particle in the bainitic matrix. This microstructure was designed to improve wear and toughness of P/M steels. The microstructures were characterized and analyzed by SEM and micro and macro hardness.
The goal of this study is to analyze the hydric behaviour of textiles which can impact significantly the comfort of the wearer. Indeed, fabrics can be adapted for different climate if hydric and thermal behaviors are known. In this study, fabrics are only submitted to hydric variations. Sorption and desorption isotherms obtained from the dynamic vapour sorption apparatus (DVS) are fitted with the parallel exponential kinetics (PEK), the Hailwood-Horrobin (HH) and the Brunauer-Emmett-Teller (BET) models. One of the major finding is the relationship existing between PEK and HH models. During slow and fast processes, the sorption of water molecules on the polymer can be in monolayer and multilayer form. According to the BET model, moisture regain, a physical property of textiles, show a linear correlation with the total amount of water taken in monolayer. This study provides potential information of the end uses of these fabrics according to the selected activity level.
Daily activities and exercise may result in large displacements of the breasts, which lead to breast pain and discomfort. Therefore, a proper bra design and fit can help to control excessive breast motion to prevent the over-stretching of the connective tissues. Nevertheless, bra fit problems, such as excessively high tension of the shoulder straps and a tight underband could have substantially negative effects on the wear comfort and health of the wearer. The purpose of this study is to, therefore, examine the effects of bra band tension on breast displacement. Usually, human wear trials are carried out, but there are inconsistencies during testing. Therefore, a soft manikin torso is used to examine breast displacement at walking speeds of 2.30 km/h and 4.08 km/h. The breast displacement itself is determined by using a VICON motion capture system. The 3D geometric changes of the underwire bra band tension and the corresponding control of breast movement are also analyzed by using a 3D handheld scanner along with Rapidform software. The results indicate that an appropriate bra band tension can help to reduce breast displacement and provide a comfortable angle for the underwire. The findings can be used by designers and bra engineers as a reference source to advance bra design and development.
The agricultural sector is becoming more critical than ever in view of the expected overpopulation of the Earth. The introduction of robotic solutions in this field is an increasingly researched topic to make the most of the Earth's resources, thus going to avoid the problems of wear and tear of the human body due to the harsh agricultural work, and open the possibility of a constant careful processing 24 hours a day. This project is realized for a terrestrial autonomous robot aimed to navigate in an orchard collecting fallen peaches below the trees. When it receives the signal indicating the low battery, it has to return to the docking station where it will replace its battery and then return to the last work point and resume its routine. Considering a preset path in orchards with tree rows with variable length by which the robot goes iteratively using the algorithm D*. In case of low battery, the D* algorithm is still used to determine the fastest return path to the docking station as well as to come back from the docking station to the last work point. MATLAB simulations were performed to analyze the flexibility and adaptability of the developed algorithm. The simulation results show an enormous potential for adaptability, particularly in view of the irregularity of orchard field, since it is not flat and undergoes modifications over time from fallen branch as well as from other obstacles and constraints. The D* algorithm determines the best route in spite of the irregularity of the terrain. Moreover, in this work, it will be shown a possible solution to improve the initial points tracking and reduce time between movements.
Wearable robotics is a potential solution in aiding gait rehabilitation of lower limbs dyskinesia patients, such as knee osteoarthritis or stroke afflicted patients. Many wearable robots have been developed in the form of rigid exoskeletons, but their bulk devices, high cost and control complexity hinder their popularity in the field of gait rehabilitation. Thus, the development of a portable, compliant and low-cost wearable robot for gait rehabilitation is necessary. Inspired by Chinese traditional folding fans and balloon inflators, the authors present an inflatable, foldable and variable stiffness knee exosuit (IFVSKE) in this paper. The pneumatic actuator of IFVSKE was fabricated in the shape of folding fans by using thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) fabric materials. The geometric and mechanical properties of IFVSKE were characterized with experimental methods. To assist the knee joint smartly, an intelligent control profile for IFVSKE was proposed based on the concept of full-cycle energy management of the biomechanical energy during human movement. The biomechanical energy of knee joints in a walking gait cycle of patients could be collected and released to assist the joint motion just by adjusting the inner pressure of IFVSKE. Finally, a healthy subject was involved to walk with and without the IFVSKE to evaluate the assisting effects.
In this study, we have proposed a gesture to emotion recognition method using flex sensors mounted on metacarpophalangeal joints. The flex sensors are fixed in a wearable glove. The data from the glove are sent to PC using Wi-Fi. Four gestures: finger pointing, thumbs up, fist open and fist close are performed by five subjects. Each gesture is categorized into sad, happy, and excited class based on the velocity and acceleration of the hand gesture. Seventeen inspectors observed the emotions and hand gestures of the five subjects. The emotional state based on the investigators assessment and acquired movement speed data is compared. Overall, we achieved 77% accurate results. Therefore, the proposed design can be used for emotional state detection applications.
In response to widely used wearable medical devices equipped with a continuous glucose monitor (CGM) and insulin pump, the advanced control methods are still demanding to get the full benefit of these devices. Unlike costly clinical trials, implementing effective insulin-glucose control strategies can provide significant contributions to the patients suffering from chronic diseases such as diabetes. This study deals with a key role of two-layer insulin-glucose regulator based on model-predictive-control (MPC) scheme so that the patient’s predicted glucose profile is in compliance with the insulin level injected through insulin pump automatically. It is achieved by iterative optimization algorithm which is called an integrated perturbation analysis and sequential quadratic programming (IPA-SQP) solver for handling uncertainties due to unexpected variations in glucose-insulin values and body’s characteristics. The feasibility evaluation of the discussed control approach is also studied by means of numerical simulations of two case scenarios via measured data. The obtained results are presented to verify the superior and reliable performance of the proposed control scheme with no negative impact on patient safety.
This in vitro study focused on investigating the fatigue resistance of veneered zirconia molar crowns with different veneering ceramic thicknesses, simulating the relative wear depths under simulated cyclic loading. A mandibular first molar was prepared and then scanned using computer-aided design/computer-aided manufacturing (CAD/CAM) technology to fabricate 32 zirconia copings of uniform 0.5 mm thickness. The manufactured copings then veneered with 1.5 mm, 1.0 mm, 0.5 mm, and 0.0 mm representing 0%, 33%, 66%, and 100% relative wear of a normal ceramic thickness of 1.5 mm. All samples were thermally aged to 6000 thermo-cycles for 2 minutes with distilled water between 5 ˚C and 55 ˚C. The samples subjected to cyclic fatigue and fracture testing using SD Mechatronik chewing simulator. These samples are loaded up to 1.25x10⁶ cycles or until they fail. During fatigue, testing, extensive cracks were observed in samples with 0.5 mm veneering layer thickness. Veneering layer thickness 1.5-mm group and 1.0-mm group were not different in terms of resisting loads necessary to cause an initial crack or final failure. All ceramic zirconia-based crown restorations with varying occlusal veneering layer thicknesses appeared to be fatigue resistant. Fracture load measurement for all tested groups before and after fatigue loading exceeded the clinical chewing forces in the posterior region. In general, the fracture loads increased after fatigue loading and with the increase in the thickness of the occlusal layering ceramic.
A study was conducted to determine the level of compliance with sanitary measures in piggeries, and awareness and risk factors of African swine fever in Benue State, Nigeria. Questionnaires were distributed to 74 respondents consisting of piggery owners and attendants in different piggeries across 12 LGAs to collect data for this study. Sanitary measures in piggeries were observed to be generally very poor, though respondents admitted being aware of ASF. Piggeries located within a 1 km radius of a slaughter slab (OR=9.2, 95% CI - 3.0-28.8), piggeries near refuse dump sites (OR=3.0, 95% CI - 1.0-9.5) and piggeries where farm workers wear their work clothes outside of the piggery premises (OR=0.2, 95% CI - 0.1-0.7) showed higher chances of ASFV infection and were significantly associated (p < 0.0001), (p < 0.05) and (p < 0.01), and were identified as potential risk factors. The study concluded that pigs in Benue State are still at risk of an ASF outbreak. Proper sanitary and hygienic practices is advocated and emphasized in piggeries, while routine surveillance for ASFV antibodies in pigs in Benue State is strongly recommended to provide a reliable reference data base to plan for the prevention of any devastating ASF outbreak.
The strength, hardness, and toughness (ductility) are in strong conflict for the metallic materials. The only possibility how to make their simultaneous improvement is to provide the microstructural refinement, by cold deformation, and subsequent recrystallization. However, application of this kind of treatment is impossible for high-carbon high-alloyed ledeburitic tool steels. Alternatively, it has been demonstrated over the last few years that sub-zero treatment induces some microstructural changes in these materials, which might favourably influence their complex of mechanical properties. Commercially available PM ledeburitic steel Vanadis 6 has been used for the current investigations. The paper demonstrates that sub-zero treatment induces clear refinement of the martensite, reduces the amount of retained austenite, enhances the population density of fine carbides, and makes alterations in microstructural development that take place during tempering. As a consequence, the steel manifests improved wear resistance at higher toughness and fracture toughness. Based on the obtained results, the key question “can the wear performance be improved by sub-zero treatment simultaneously with toughness” can be answered by “definitely yes”.
Reducing energy consumption became the major concern for all countries of the world during the recent decades. In general, power saving is currently the nominal goal of most industrial countries. It is well known that fossil fuels are the main pillar of development of world countries. Unfortunately, the increased rate of fossil fuel consumption will lead to serious problems caused by an expected depletion of fuels. Moreover, dangerous gases and vapors emission lead to severe environmental problems during fuel burning. Consequently, most engineering sectors especially the mechanical sectors are looking for improving any machine accompanied by reducing its energy consumption. Crank-Rocker planar mechanism is the most applied in mechanical systems. Besides, it is one of the most significant parts of the machines for obtaining the oscillatory motion. The transmission angle of this mechanism can be considered as an optimum value when its extreme values are equally varied around 90°. In addition, the transmission angle plays an important role in decreasing the required driving power and improving the dynamic properties of the mechanism. Hence, appropriate selection of mechanism links lengthens, which assures optimum transmission angle leads to decreasing the driving power. Moreover, mechanism's links manufactured from composite materials afford link's lightweight, which decreases the required driving torque. Furthermore, wear and corrosion problems can be treated through using composite links instead of using metal ones. This paper is dealing with improving the performance of crank-rocker mechanism using composite links due to their flexural elastic modulus values and stiffness in addition to high damping of composite materials.
Protective textiles get soiled, stained and even worn during their use, which may not be usable after a certain period due to the loss of protective performance. They need regular cleaning and maintenance, which helps to extend the durability of the clothing, retains their useful properties and ensures that fresh clothing is ready to wear when needed. Generally, the cleaning processes used for various protective clothing include dry-cleaning (using solvents) or wet cleaning (using water). These cleaning processes can alter the fabric surface properties, dimensions, and physical, mechanical and performance properties. The technology of laundering and dry-cleaning has undergone several changes. Sustainable methods and products are available for faster, safer and improved cleaning of protective textiles. We performed a comprehensive and systematic review of green technologies and eco-friendly products for sustainable cleaning of protective textiles. Special emphasis is given on the care and maintenance procedures of protective textiles for protection from fire, bullets, chemical and other types of protective clothing.
The seat belt is a vital tool in improving traffic safety conditions and minimising injuries due to traffic accidents. Most developing countries are facing a big problems associated with the human and financial losses due to traffic accidents. One way to minimise these losses is the use of seat belts by passengers both in the front and rear seats of a vehicle; however, at the same time, close to nothing is known about the rates of seat belt utilisation among rear seat passengers in many developing countries. Therefore, there is a need to estimate these rates in order to know the extent of this problem and how people interact with traffic safety measures like seat belts and find demographic characteristics that contribute to wearing or non-wearing of seat belts with the aim of finding solutions to improve wearing rates. In this paper, an observational study was done to gather data on restraints use in motor vehicle rear seats in eight observational stations in a rapidly developing country, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and estimate a use rate for the whole country. Also, a questionnaire was used in order to study demographic characteristics affecting the wearing of seatbelts in rear seats. Results of the observational study showed that the overall wearing/usage rate was 12.3%, which is considered very low when compared to other countries. Survey results show that single, male, less educated passengers from Arab and South Asian backgrounds use seat belts reportedly less than others. Finally, solutions are put forward to improve this wearing rate based on the results of this study.
This study presents new gait representations for improving gait recognition accuracy on cross gait appearances, such as normal walking, wearing a coat and carrying a bag. Based on the Gait Energy Image (GEI), two ideas are implemented to generate new gait representations. One is to append lower knee regions to the original GEI, and the other is to apply convolutional operations to the GEI and its variants. A set of new gait representations are created and used for training multi-class Support Vector Machines (SVMs). Tests are conducted on the CASIA dataset B. Various combinations of the gait representations with different convolutional kernel size and different numbers of kernels used in the convolutional processes are examined. Both the entire images as features and reduced dimensional features by Principal Component Analysis (PCA) are tested in gait recognition. Interestingly, both new techniques, appending the lower knee regions to the original GEI and convolutional GEI, can significantly contribute to the performance improvement in the gait recognition. The experimental results have shown that the average recognition rate can be improved from 75.65% to 87.50%.
The tribological behavior of commercially used Perspex was evaluated under dry and wet sliding condition using a pin-on-disc wear tester with different applied loads ranging from 2.5 to 20 N. Experiments were conducted with varying sliding distance from 0.2 km to 4.6 km, wherein the sliding velocity was kept constant, 0.64 ms-1. The results reveal that the weight loss increases with applied load and the sliding distance. The nature of the wear rate was very similar in both the sliding environments in which initially the wear rate increased very rapidly with increasing sliding distance and then progressed to a slower rate. Moreover, the wear rate in wet sliding environment was significantly lower than that under dry sliding condition. The worn surfaces were characterized by optical microscope and SEM. It is found that surface modification has significant effect on sliding wear performance of Perspex.
The vast majority of the Middle East countries are prone to earthquakes. Despite that and from a seismic hazard point of view, the higher values of the superimposed dead load intensity of partitions and wearing materials of the constructed reinforced concrete slabs in these countries can increase the earthquake vulnerability of the structures. The primary objective of this paper is to investigate the effect of reducing superimposed dead load on the lateral seismic deformations of structures, the inter-story drifts and the seismic pounding damages. The study utilizes a group of three reinforced concrete structures at three different site conditions. These structures are assumed to be constructed in Nablus city of Palestine, and having superimposed dead load value as 1 kN/m2, 3 kN/m2, and 5 kN/m2, respectively. SAP2000 program, Version 18.1.1, is used to perform the response spectrum analysis to obtain the potential lateral seismic deformations of the studied models. Amazingly, the study points that, at the same site, superimposed dead load has a minor effect on the lateral deflections of the models. This, however, promotes the hypothesis that buildings failed during earthquakes mainly because they were not designed appropriately against gravity loads.
The drilling and riveting processes are widely used in the assembly of carrier rocket, which makes the efficiency and quality of drilling become the important factor affecting the assembly process. According to the problem existing in the drilling of thick stacked plate (thickness larger than 10mm) of carrier rocket, such as drill break, large noise and burr etc., experimental study of the influence of tool material on the drilling was carried out. The cutting force was measured by a piezoelectric dynamometer, the aperture was measured with an outline projector, and the burr is observed and measured by a digital stereo microscope. Through the measurement, the effects of tool material on the drilling were analyzed from the aspects of drilling force, diameter, and burr. The results show that, compared with carbide drill and coated carbide one, the drilling force of high speed steel is larger. But, the application of high speed steel also has some advantages, e.g. a higher number of hole can be obtained, the height of burr is small, the exit is smooth and the slim burr is less, and the tool experiences wear but not fracture. Therefore, the high speed steel tool is suitable for the drilling of thick stacked plate of 2219 Aluminum alloy.
Health for all is considered as a sign of well-being and inclusive growth. New healthcare technologies are contributing to the quality of human lives by promoting health education and awareness, leading to the prevention, early diagnosis and treatment of the symptoms of diseases. Healthcare technologies have now migrated from the medical and institutionalized settings to the home and everyday life. This paper explores these new technologies and investigates how they contribute to health education and awareness, promoting the objective of high-value health system for all. The methodology used for the research is literature review. The paper also discusses the opportunities and challenges with futuristic healthcare technologies. The combined advances in genomics medicine, wearables and the IoT with enhanced data collection in electronic health record (EHR) systems, environmental sensors, and mobile device applications can contribute in a big way to high-value health system for all. The promise by these technologies includes reduced total cost of healthcare, reduced incidence of medical diagnosis errors, and reduced treatment variability. The major barriers to adoption include concerns with security, privacy, and integrity of healthcare data, regulation and compliance issues, service reliability, interoperability and portability of data, and user friendliness and convenience of these technologies.
Connecting health services with technology has a huge demand as people health situations are becoming worse day by day. In fact, engaging new technologies such as Internet of Things (IOT) into the medical services can enhance the patient care services. Specifically, patients suffering from chronic diseases such as cardiac patients need a special care and monitoring. In reality, some efforts were previously taken to automate and improve the patient monitoring systems. However, the previous efforts have some limitations and lack the real-time feature needed for chronic kind of diseases. In this paper, an improved process model for patient monitoring system specialized for cardiac patients is presented. A survey was distributed and interviews were conducted to gather the needed requirements to improve the cardiac patient monitoring system. Business Process Model and Notation (BPMN) language was used to model the proposed process. In fact, the proposed system uses the IOT Technology to assist doctors to remotely monitor and follow-up with their heart patients in real-time. In order to validate the effectiveness of the proposed solution, simulation analysis was performed using Bizagi Modeler tool. Analysis results show performance improvements in the heart monitoring process. For the future, authors suggest enhancing the proposed system to cover all the chronic diseases.