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  • American Institute of Physics (AIP)  (154,279)
  • MDPI Publishing  (6,540)
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  • 1
    Publication Date: 2018-01-01
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 96: A Novel Approach to Monitoring the Curing of Epoxy in Closed Tools by Use of Ultrasonic Spectroscopy Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010096 Authors: Christian Pommer Michael Sinapius The increasing use of composite materials has led to a greater demand for efficient curing cycles to reduce costs and speed up production cycles in manufacturing. One method to achieve this goal is in-line cure monitoring to determine the exact curing time. This article proposes a novel method through which to monitor the curing process inside closed tools by employing ultrasonic spectroscopy. A simple experiment is used to demonstrate the change in the ultrasonic spectrum during the cure cycle of an epoxy. The results clearly reveal a direct correlation between the amplitude and state of cure. The glass transition point is indicated by a global minimum of the reflected amplitude.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 2
    Publication Date: 2018-01-01
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 94: Integrated Temperature and Hydrogen Sensors with MEMS Technology Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010094 Authors: Hongchuan Jiang Min Huang Yibing Yu Xiaoyu Tian Xiaohui Zhao Wanli Zhang Jianfeng Zhang Yifan Huang Kun Yu In this work, a PdNi thin film hydrogen gas sensor with integrated Pt thin film temperature sensor was designed and fabricated using the micro-electro-mechanical system (MEMS) process. The integrated sensors consist of two resistors: the former, based on Pt film, is used as a temperature sensor, while the latter had the function of hydrogen sensing and is based on PdNi alloy film. The temperature coefficient of resistance (TCR) in both devices was measured and the output response of the PdNi film hydrogen sensor was calibrated based on the temperature acquired by the Pt temperature sensor. The SiN layer was deposited on top of Pt film to inhibit the hydrogen diffusion and reduce consequent disturbance on temperature measurement. The TCR of the PdNi film and the Pt film was about 0.00122/K and 0.00217/K, respectively. The performances of the PdNi film hydrogen sensor were investigated with hydrogen concentrations from 0.3% to 3% on different temperatures from 294.7 to 302.2 K. With the measured temperature of the Pt resistor and the TCR of the PdNi film, the impact of the temperature on the performances of the PdNi film hydrogen sensor was reduced. The output response, response time and recovery time of the PdNi film hydrogen sensors under the hydrogen concentration of 0.5%, 1.0%, 1.5% and 2.0% were measured at 313 K. The output response of the PdNi thin film hydrogen sensors increased with increasing hydrogen concentration while the response time and recovery time decreased. A cycling test between pure nitrogen and 3% hydrogen concentration was performed at 313 K and PdNi thin film hydrogen sensor demonstrated great repeatability in the cycling test.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 3
    Publication Date: 2018-01-01
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 99: Temporal–Spatial Surface Seasonal Mass Changes and Vertical Crustal Deformation in South China Block from GPS and GRACE Measurements Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010099 Authors: Meilin He Wenbin Shen Yuanjin Pan Ruizhi Chen Hao Ding Guangyi Guo The solid Earth deforms elastically in response to variations of surface atmosphere, hydrology, and ice/glacier mass loads. Continuous geodetic observations by Global Positioning System (CGPS) stations and Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) record such deformations to estimate seasonal and secular mass changes. In this paper, we present the seasonal variation of the surface mass changes and the crustal vertical deformation in the South China Block (SCB) identified by GPS and GRACE observations with records spanning from 1999 to 2016. We used 33 CGPS stations to construct a time series of coordinate changes, which are decomposed by empirical orthogonal functions (EOFs) in SCB. The average weighted root-mean-square (WRMS) reduction is 38% when we subtract GRACE-modeled vertical displacements from GPS time series. The first common mode shows clear seasonal changes, indicating seasonal surface mass re-distribution in and around the South China Block. The correlation between GRACE and GPS time series is analyzed which provides a reference for further improvement of the seasonal variation of CGPS time series. The results of the GRACE observations inversion are the surface deformations caused by the surface mass change load at a rate of about −0.4 to −0.8 mm/year, which is used to improve the long-term trend of non-tectonic loads of the GPS vertical velocity field to further explain the crustal tectonic movement in the SCB and surroundings.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 4
    Publication Date: 2018-01-02
    Description: IJERPH, Vol. 15, Pages 54: Favourable Perceptions of Electronic Cigarettes Relative to Cigarettes and the Associations with Susceptibility to Electronic Cigarette Use in Hong Kong Chinese Adolescents International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health doi: 10.3390/ijerph15010054 Authors: Lok Leung Sai Ho Jianjiu Chen Man Wang Tai Lam We investigated favourable perceptions of electronic cigarettes (ECs) relative to cigarettes and their associations with EC use susceptibility in adolescents. Hong Kong Chinese Secondary 1–6 (U.S. grade 7–12) students (n = 40,202) were surveyed in 2014/2015 on EC use, cigarette smoking, favourable perceptions of ECs relative to cigarettes, EC use susceptibility, family smoking, and socio-demographic characteristics. Cox regression yielded adjusted prevalence ratios (APRs) of EC use susceptibility in never users, excluding those unaware of ECs. In all students, 8.9% were ever EC users, 47.2% reported favourable perceptions of ECs relative to cigarettes, such as less likely to cause accidents (25.2%) and less harmful to users (24.5%), and 28.9% did not know ECs. Among never EC users who were aware of ECs (n = 24,663), EC use susceptibility was associated with each of the favourable perceptions, especially greater attractiveness (APR 2.84, 95% CI 2.53–3.19), and better parental (2.75, 2.41–3.15) and school acceptability (2.56, 2.15–3.05). An increased number of favourable perceptions of ECs relative to cigarettes was associated more strongly with the susceptibility (p for trend < 0.001). Our findings inform strategies to reduce unwarranted favourable perceptions and prevent adolescent EC use.
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    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering , Medicine
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  • 5
    Publication Date: 2018-01-02
    Description: Future Internet, Vol. 10, Pages 2: An Anonymous Offline RFID Grouping-Proof Protocol Future Internet doi: 10.3390/fi10010002 Authors: Zhibin Zhou Pin Liu Qin Liu Guojun Wang As more and more items are tagged with RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) tags, grouping-proof technology is widely utilized to provide a coexistence evidence for a group of related items. Due to the wireless channel used in RFID systems, a security risk exists in the communication between the reader and tags. How to ensure the tag’s information security and to generate reliable grouping-proof becomes a hot research topic. To protect the privacy of tags, the verification of grouping-proof is traditionally executed by the verifier, and the reader is only used to collect the proof data. This approach can cause the reader to submit invalid proof data to the verifier in the event of DoP (Deny of Proof) attack. In this paper, an ECC-based, off-line anonymous grouping-proof protocol (EAGP) is proposed. The protocol authorizes the reader to examine the validity of grouping-proof without knowing the identities of tags. From the security and performance analysis, the EAGP can protect the security and privacy of RFID tags, and defence impersonation and replay attacks. Furthermore, it has the ability to reduce the system overhead caused by the invalid submission of grouping-proofs. As a result, the proposed EAGP equips practical application values.
    Electronic ISSN: 1999-5903
    Topics: Computer Science
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  • 6
    Publication Date: 2018-01-02
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 105: Detection of Ammonia-Oxidizing Bacteria (AOB) Using a Porous Silicon Optical Biosensor Based on a Multilayered Double Bragg Mirror Structure Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010105 Authors: Hongyan Zhang Jie Lv Zhenhong Jia We successfully demonstrate a porous silicon (PS) double Bragg mirror by electrochemical etching at room temperature as a deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) label-free biosensor for detecting ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB). Compared to various other one-dimension photonic crystal configurations of PS, the double Bragg mirror structure is quite easy to prepare and exhibits interesting optical properties. The width of high reflectivity stop band of the PS double Bragg mirror is about 761 nm with a sharp and deep resonance peak at 1328 nm in the reflectance spectrum, which gives a high sensitivity and distinguishability for sensing performance. The detection sensitivity of such a double Bragg mirror structure is illustrated through the investigation of AOB DNA hybridization in the PS pores. The redshifts of the reflectance spectra show a good linear relationship with both complete complementary and partial complementary DNA. The lowest detection limit for complete complementary DNA is 27.1 nM and the detection limit of the biosensor for partial complementary DNA is 35.0 nM, which provides the feasibility and effectiveness for the detection of AOB in a real environment. The PS double Bragg mirror structure is attractive for widespread biosensing applications and provides great potential for the development of optical applications.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 7
    Publication Date: 2018-01-03
    Description: IJERPH, Vol. 15, Pages 59: Arsenic Uptake, Toxicity, Detoxification, and Speciation in Plants: Physiological, Biochemical, and Molecular Aspects International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health doi: 10.3390/ijerph15010059 Authors: Ghulam Abbas Behzad Murtaza Irshad Bibi Muhammad Shahid Nabeel Niazi Muhammad Khan Muhammad Amjad Munawar Hussain Natasha Environmental contamination with arsenic (As) is a global environmental, agricultural and health issue due to the highly toxic and carcinogenic nature of As. Exposure of plants to As, even at very low concentration, can cause many morphological, physiological, and biochemical changes. The recent research on As in the soil-plant system indicates that As toxicity to plants varies with its speciation in plants (e.g., arsenite, As(III); arsenate, As(V)), with the type of plant species, and with other soil factors controlling As accumulation in plants. Various plant species have different mechanisms of As(III) or As(V) uptake, toxicity, and detoxification. This review briefly describes the sources and global extent of As contamination and As speciation in soil. We discuss different mechanisms responsible for As(III) and As(V) uptake, toxicity, and detoxification in plants, at physiological, biochemical, and molecular levels. This review highlights the importance of the As-induced generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), as well as their damaging impacts on plants at biochemical, genetic, and molecular levels. The role of different enzymatic (superoxide dismutase, catalase, glutathione reductase, and ascorbate peroxidase) and non-enzymatic (salicylic acid, proline, phytochelatins, glutathione, nitric oxide, and phosphorous) substances under As(III/V) stress have been delineated via conceptual models showing As translocation and toxicity pathways in plant species. Significantly, this review addresses the current, albeit partially understood, emerging aspects on (i) As-induced physiological, biochemical, and genotoxic mechanisms and responses in plants and (ii) the roles of different molecules in modulation of As-induced toxicities in plants. We also provide insight on some important research gaps that need to be filled to advance our scientific understanding in this area of research on As in soil-plant systems.
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  • 8
    Publication Date: 2018-01-04
    Description: Entropy, Vol. 20, Pages 20: Liouvillian of the Open STIRAP Problem Entropy doi: 10.3390/e20010020 Authors: Thomas Mathisen Jonas Larson With the corresponding Liouvillian as a starting point, we demonstrate two seemingly new phenomena of the STIRAP problem when subjected to irreversible losses. It is argued that both of these can be understood from an underlying Zeno effect, and in particular both can be viewed as if the environment assists the STIRAP population transfer. The first of these is found for relative strong dephasing, and, in the language of the Liouvillian, it is explained from the explicit form of the matrix generating the time-evolution; the coherence terms of the state decay off, which prohibits further population transfer. For pure dissipation, another Zeno effect is found, where the presence of a non-zero Liouvillian gap protects the system’s (adiabatic) state from non-adiabatic excitations. In contrast to full Zeno freezing of the evolution, which is often found in many problems without explicit time-dependence, here, the freezing takes place in the adiabatic basis such that the system still evolves but adiabatically.
    Electronic ISSN: 1099-4300
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Physics
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  • 9
    Publication Date: 2018-01-04
    Description: IJERPH, Vol. 15, Pages 62: An Empirical Study on Low-Carbon: Human Resources Performance Evaluation International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health doi: 10.3390/ijerph15010062 Authors: Quan Chen Sang-Bing Tsai Yuming Zhai Jie Zhou Jian Yu Li-Chung Chang Guodong Li Yuxiang Zheng Jiangtao Wang Low-carbon logistics meets the requirements of a low-carbon economy and is the most effective operating model for logistic development to achieve sustainability by coping with severe energy consumption and global warming. Low-carbon logistics aims to reduce carbon intensity rather than simply reduce energy consumption and carbon emissions. Human resources are an important part of the great competition in the logistics market and significantly affect the operations of enterprises. Performance evaluations of human resources are particularly important for low-carbon logistics enterprises with scarce talents. Such evaluations in these enterprises are of great significance for their strategic development. This study constructed a human resource performance evaluation system to assess non-managerial employees’ low-carbon job capacity, job performance, and job attitude in the low-carbon logistics sector. The case study results revealed that the investigated company enjoyed initial success after having promoted low-carbon concepts and values to its non-managerial employees, and the success was demonstrated by excellent performance in its employees’ job attitude and knowledge. This study adopts the AHP method to reasonably determine an indicator system of performance evaluation and its weight to avoid certain human-caused bias. This study not only fills the gap in the related literature, but can also be applied to industrial practice.
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  • 10
    Publication Date: 2018-01-04
    Description: IJERPH, Vol. 15, Pages 61: The Emergence and Unfolding of Telemonitoring Practices in Different Healthcare Organizations International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health doi: 10.3390/ijerph15010061 Authors: Jannie Christensen Telemonitoring, a sub-category of telemedicine, is promoted as a solution to meet the challenges in Western healthcare systems in terms of an increasing population of people with chronic conditions and fragmentation issues. Recent findings from large-scale telemonitoring programs reveal that these promises are difficult to meet in complex real-life settings which may be explained by concentrating on the practices that emerge when telemonitoring is used to treat patients with chronic conditions. This paper explores the emergence and unfolding of telemonitoring practices in relation to a large-scale, inter-organizational home telemonitoring program which involved 5 local health centers, 10 district nurse units, four hospitals, and 225 general practice clinics in Denmark. Twenty-eight interviews and 28 h of observations of health professionals and administrative staff were conducted over a 12-month period from 2014 to 2015. This study’s findings reveal how telemonitoring practices emerged and unfolded differently among various healthcare organizations. This study suggests that the emergence and unfolding of novel practices is the result of complex interplay between existing work practices, alterations of core tasks, inscriptions in the technology, and the power to either adopt or ignore such novel practices. The study enhances our understanding of how novel technology like telemonitoring impacts various types of healthcare organizations when implemented in a complex inter-organizational context.
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  • 11
    Publication Date: 2018-01-04
    Description: IJERPH, Vol. 15, Pages 60: The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit: Environmental Stressors and Supports International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health doi: 10.3390/ijerph15010060 Authors: Kristen Williams Kayla Patel Julie Stausmire Christy Bridges Mary Mathis Jennifer Barkin The relationship between maternal mental health and infant development has been established in the literature. The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) is a particularly challenging environment for new mothers as several natural processes are disrupted. The objective of this study is to elucidate protective factors and environmental deficits associated with the NICU. The experiences of forty-six (n = 46) mothers of infants admitted to a Level III NICU in the Midwestern United States, who responded to a related open-ended question, were analyzed thematically. Five themes related to the NICU environment emerged as being either stressful or helpful: (1) amount and quality of communication with medical staff, (2) bedside manner of medical staff, (3) feeling alienated from infant’s care, (4) support from other NICU mothers and families, and (5) NICU Physical Environment and Regulations. There is a need for medical staff training on awareness, communication, empathy, and other behaviors that might improve maternal (and parental) experiences in the NICU. The physical environment, including rules and regulations of the NICU, should be reexamined with family comfort in mind in addition to the clinical care of the infant.
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    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering , Medicine
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  • 12
    Publication Date: 2018-01-06
    Description: IJERPH, Vol. 15, Pages 73: Workaholism as a Mediator between Work-Related Stressors and Health Outcomes International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health doi: 10.3390/ijerph15010073 Authors: Cecilie Andreassen Ståle Pallesen Torbjørn Torsheim It is currently unknown if unfavorable working conditions, reflected by the demand–control–support model and the effort–reward imbalance model, directly influence health or if the effects may be mediated by work-related attitudes and behaviors such as workaholism. In the present study, 988 employees (55.6% males, mean age 36.09, SD = 9.23) from a large consultant firm participated in a cross-sectional survey assessing work variables such as job demands, job control, social support, effort, reward, and overcommitment. Workaholism was also assessed together with eight different health-related outcomes. Although direct effects of the work stressors on health were found on most health outcomes, the work-related stressors were overall strongly related to workaholism (R2 = 0.522), which, in turn, was positively related to four (anxiety/insomnia, somatic symptoms, emotional exhaustion, and social dysfunction) of the eight outcome variables. Of a total of 40 relationships between work-related stressors and health outcomes, workaholism fully mediated three of these, and partly mediated 12. Overall, the study suggests that the effects of work-related stressors on health in many cases may be mediated by workaholism.
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  • 13
    Publication Date: 2018-01-06
    Description: Entropy, Vol. 20, Pages 30: Human Postural Control: Assessment of Two Alternative Interpretations of Center of Pressure Sample Entropy through a Principal Component Factorization of Whole-Body Kinematics Entropy doi: 10.3390/e20010030 Authors: Thomas Haid Peter Federolf Sample entropy (SaEn), calculated for center of pressure (COP) trajectories, is often distinct for compromised postural control, e.g., in Parkinson, stroke, or concussion patients, but the interpretation of COP-SaEn remains subject to debate. The purpose of this paper is to test the hypotheses that COP-SaEn is related (Hypothesis 1; H1) to the complexity of the postural movement structures, i.e., to the utilization and coordination of the mechanical degrees of freedom; or (Hypothesis 2; H2) to the irregularity of the individual postural movement strategies, i.e., to the neuromuscular control of these movements. Twenty-one healthy volunteers (age 26.4 ± 2.4; 10 females), equipped with 27 reflective markers, stood on a force plate and performed 2-min quiet stances. Principal movement strategies (PMs) were obtained from a principal component analysis (PCA) of the kinematic data. Then SaEn was calculated for the COP and PM time-series. H1 was tested by correlating COP-SaEn to the relative contribution of the PMs to the subject specific overall movement and H2 by correlating COP-SaEn and PM-SaEn. Both hypotheses were supported. This suggests that in a healthy population the COP-SaEn is linked to the complexity of the coordinative structure of postural movements, as well as to the irregularity of the neuromuscular control of specific movement components.
    Electronic ISSN: 1099-4300
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Physics
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  • 14
    Publication Date: 2018-01-06
    Description: IJERPH, Vol. 15, Pages 76: Community Engaged Cumulative Risk Assessment of Exposure to Inorganic Well Water Contaminants, Crow Reservation, Montana International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health doi: 10.3390/ijerph15010076 Authors: Margaret Eggers John Doyle Myra Lefthand Sara Young Anita Moore-Nall Larry Kindness Roberta Medicine Timothy Ford Eric Dietrich Albert Parker Joseph Hoover Anne Camper An estimated 11 million people in the US have home wells with unsafe levels of hazardous metals and nitrate. The national scope of the health risk from consuming this water has not been assessed as home wells are largely unregulated and data on well water treatment and consumption are lacking. Here, we assessed health risks from consumption of contaminated well water on the Crow Reservation by conducting a community-engaged, cumulative risk assessment. Well water testing, surveys and interviews were used to collect data on contaminant concentrations, water treatment methods, well water consumption, and well and septic system protection and maintenance practices. Additive Hazard Index calculations show that the water in more than 39% of wells is unsafe due to uranium, manganese, nitrate, zinc and/or arsenic. Most families’ financial resources are limited, and 95% of participants do not employ water treatment technologies. Despite widespread high total dissolved solids, poor taste and odor, 80% of families consume their well water. Lack of environmental health literacy about well water safety, pre-existing health conditions and limited environmental enforcement also contribute to vulnerability. Ensuring access to safe drinking water and providing accompanying education are urgent public health priorities for Crow and other rural US families with low environmental health literacy and limited financial resources.
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  • 15
    Publication Date: 2018-01-06
    Description: IJERPH, Vol. 15, Pages 75: Safety Assessment of Electronic Cigarettes and Their Relationship with Cardiovascular Disease International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health doi: 10.3390/ijerph15010075 Authors: Guangwei Zhang Zhangli Wang Kai Zhang Rui Hou Chunli Xing Qi Yu Enqi Liu Smoking leads to the occurrence and development of a variety of diseases. Most importantly, it is an independent risk factor of cardiovascular atherosclerosis. In recent years, electronic cigarettes have become a popular alternative to traditional cigarettes, since modern micro-electronic techniques provide the possibility of simulating the process of traditional smoking. Additionally, it is convenient and fashionable. Nevertheless, comments about the safety of electronic cigarettes remain controversial. Although the research about electronic cigarettes increased exponentially, there has been no systematic study of its safety. The aim of the current study is to review the literature reports about the safety of electronic cigarettes, and to understand their hazards and disadvantages. It was found that most of the current research about electronic cigarettes comprises short-term and in vitro studies. There are few reports of in vivo and long-term studies. Notably, the level of harmful components such as volatile organic compounds, tobacco-specific nitrosamines and heavy metals in electronic cigarettes are even higher than in traditional cigarettes. Therefore, the harm of electronic cigarettes should not be underestimated. In conclusion, the question of whether electronic cigarettes are a safe and sufficient substitute for traditional smoking needs further investigation.
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  • 16
    Publication Date: 2018-01-06
    Description: IJERPH, Vol. 15, Pages 78: Environmental Risk Factors for Developing Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus: A Systematic Review International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health doi: 10.3390/ijerph15010078 Authors: Tashi Dendup Xiaoqi Feng Stephanie Clingan Thomas Astell-Burt Different elements of the environment have been posited to influence type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). This systematic review summarizes evidence on the environmental determinants of T2DM identified in four databases. It proposes a theoretical framework illustrating the link between environment and T2DM, and briefly discusses some methodological challenges and potential solutions, and opportunities for future research. Walkability, air pollution, food and physical activity environment and roadways proximity were the most common environmental characteristics studied. Of the more than 200 reported and extracted relationships assessed in 60 studies, 82 showed significant association in the expected direction. In general, higher levels of walkability and green space were associated with lower T2DM risk, while increased levels of noise and air pollution were associated with greater risk. Current evidence is limited in terms of volume and study quality prohibiting causal inferences. However, the evidence suggests that environmental characteristics may influence T2DM prevention, and also provides a reasonable basis for further investigation with better quality data and longitudinal studies with policy-relevant environmental measures. This pursuit of better evidence is critical to support health-orientated urban design and city planning.
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  • 17
    Publication Date: 2018-01-06
    Description: IJERPH, Vol. 15, Pages 77: Socio-Demographic and Mental Health Profile of Admitted Cases of Self-Inflicted Harm in the US Population International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health doi: 10.3390/ijerph15010077 Authors: Chris Hanuscin Golara Zahmatkesh Anaheed Shirazi Deyu Pan Senait Teklehaimanot Shahrzad Bazargan-Hejazi Self-inflicted harm (SIH) has a substantial lifetime prevalence, it is associated with tremendous costs, and its rate is increasing on a national scale. To examine the characteristics of those admitted for SIH in the US and to investigate the factors that potentially modify the methods used for SIH. This was a retrospective analysis of admitted cases of SIH including suicide attempts between 2007 and 2012 using the National Trauma Data Bank. We included a total of 204,633 cases admitted for SIH. Our participants were 75.1% males. Those aged 15–24 (21%), 25–34 (22%), 35–44 (19%), 45–54 (19%), and 55–64 (10%) years comprised the largest age groups among our cases—70.8%, 11.5%, 11.1%, and 6.6% were, respectively, Caucasians, Hispanics, Blacks, and Asian/Others. Analyses of the SIH methods revealed that Blacks were less likely to self-poison [Odds Ratio (OR): 0.78] compared to Whites, whereas individuals with psychiatric disorders or substance abuse carried 2.5 and 2.0-fold higher risk, respectively. Blacks were also less likely to use anoxic methods (OR: 0.69), whereas patients with psychiatric disorders or substance abuse carried 1.5-fold higher risk. Being Black, Hispanic, and Asian (OR: 0.58, 0.55, and 0.55, respectively) as well as having psychiatric disorders (OR: 0.80) were associated with lower risks of using firearms, whereas its risk was increased with increasing age. Blacks (OR: 0.77) were less likely to cut or pierce in contrast to Hispanics (OR: 1.4), Asians/Others (OR: 1.29), and those with psychiatric disorders (2.5-fold higher risk) or drug abuse (2-fold higher risk). Blacks (OR: 1.11), Hispanics (OR: 1.13), and Asians/Others (OR: 1.57) were more likely to jump from high places, whereas those with substance abuse were less likely (OR: 0.77). Among patients admitted for SIH, males, those aged 15–64 years, and Whites comprised the largest sex, age, and racial/ethnic groups, respectively. We also found that several factors including race/ethnicity, gender, age, and having concurrent psychiatric or drug abuse disorders can potentially influence the methods used for SIH.
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  • 18
    Publication Date: 2018-01-06
    Description: IJERPH, Vol. 15, Pages 72: Attitudes towards Potential New Tobacco Control Regulations among U.S. Adults International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health doi: 10.3390/ijerph15010072 Authors: Allison Schmidt Sarah Kowitt Allison Myers Adam Goldstein Favorable attitudes towards tobacco control policies can facilitate their implementation and success. We examined attitudes toward four potential U.S. Federal tobacco regulations (banning menthol from cigarettes, reducing nicotine levels in cigarettes, banning candy and fruit flavored electronic cigarettes, and banning candy and fruit flavored little cigars and cigarillos) and associations with individual and state variables. A nationally representative phone survey of 4337 adults assessed attitudes toward potential policies. Weighted logistic regression was used to assess relationships between attitudes and demographic factors, smoking behavior, beliefs about the government (knowledge, trust, and credibility), exposure to tobacco control campaigns, and state variables from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) State Tobacco Activities Tracking and Evaluation (STATE) System. Most respondents supported three out of four policies. Respondents that were female, non-white, Latino, living below the poverty line, had less than high school education, were of older age, did not smoke, had higher trust in government, and were exposed to national tobacco control campaigns had higher odds of expressing favorable attitudes toward potential new tobacco regulations than did their counterparts. No state-level effects were found. While differences in attitudes were observed by individual demographic characteristics, behaviors, and beliefs, a majority of participants supported most of the potential new tobacco regulations surveyed.
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  • 19
    Publication Date: 2018-01-06
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 132: Development of a Machine Vision Method for the Monitoring of Laying Hens and Detection of Multiple Nest Occupations Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010132 Authors: Mauro Zaninelli Veronica Redaelli Fabio Luzi Malcolm Mitchell Valentino Bontempo Donata Cattaneo Vittorio Dell’Orto Giovanni Savoini Free range systems can improve the welfare of laying hens. However, the access to environmental resources can be partially limited by social interactions, feeding of hens, and productivity, can be not stable and damaging behaviors, or negative events, can be observed more frequently than in conventional housing systems. In order to reach a real improvement of the hens’ welfare the study of their laying performances and behaviors is necessary. With this purpose, many systems have been developed. However, most of them do not detect a multiple occupation of the nest negatively affecting the accuracy of data collected. To overcome this issue, a new “nest-usage-sensor” was developed and tested. It was based on the evaluation of thermografic images, as acquired by a thermo-camera, and the performing of patter recognitions on images acquired from the nest interior. The sensor was setup with a “Multiple Nest Occupation Threshold” of 796 colored pixels and a template of triangular shape and sizes of 43 × 33 pixels (high per base). It was tested through an experimental nesting system where 10 hens were reared for a month. Results showed that the evaluation of thermografic images could increase the detection performance of a multiple occupation of the nest and to apply an image pattern recognition technique could allow for counting the number of hens in the nest in case of a multiple occupation. As a consequence, the accuracy of data collected in studies on laying performances and behaviors of hens, reared in a free-range housing system, could result to be improved.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 20
    Publication Date: 2018-01-07
    Description: IJERPH, Vol. 15, Pages 82: Trajectories of Emotional Symptoms and Peer Relationship Problems in Children after Nuclear Disaster: Evidence from the Fukushima Health Management Survey International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health doi: 10.3390/ijerph15010082 Authors: Misari Oe Masaharu Maeda Tetsuya Ohira Shuntaro Itagaki Mayumi Harigane Yuriko Suzuki Hirooki Yabe Seiji Yasumura Kenji Kamiya Hitoshi Ohto The Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant accident, which occurred in March 2011, is having long-term effects on children. We planned this study to describe the trajectories of emotional symptoms and peer relationship problems in children and to examine potential risks and protective factors over the 35 months following the accident. The sample was 11,791 children in the first to sixth elementary grades. We identified four patterns for emotional symptoms and three patterns for peer relationship problems, using group-based trajectory modelling. For emotional symptoms, female gender, experience of tsunami and nuclear plant accident, out-of-prefecture evacuees, and insufficient physical activity were associated with the very severe trajectory. In contrast, for peer relationship problems, male gender, experience of nuclear plant accident, and insufficient physical activity were associated with the very severe trajectory. Different factors might be related to the very severe trajectories of emotional symptoms and peer relationship problems.
    Print ISSN: 1661-7827
    Electronic ISSN: 1660-4601
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering , Medicine
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  • 21
    Publication Date: 2018-01-08
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 149: Retransmission Avoidance for Reliable Data Delivery in Underwater WSNs Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010149 Authors: Babar Ali Arshad Sher Nadeem Javaid Saif Islam Khursheed Aurangzeb Syed Haider The energy-efficient and reliable delivery of data packets in resource constraint underwater wireless sensor networks (UWSNs) is one of the key considerations to enhance the network lifetime. The traditional re-transmissions approach consumes the node battery and increases the communication overhead, which results in congestion and affects the reliable data packet delivery in the network. To ensure the reliability and conserve the node battery, in this paper, we propose adaptive forwarding layer multipath power control routing protocol to reduce the energy dissipation, achieve the data reliability and avoid the energy hole problem. In order to achieve the reliability, tree based topology is exploited to direct multiple copies of the data packet towards the surface through cross nodes in the network. The energy dissipation is reduced by a substantial amount with the selection of low noise path between the source and the destination including the information of neighbors of the potential forwarder node. Extensive simulation results show that our proposed work outperforms the compared existing scheme in terms of energy efficiency and packet received ratio (PRR).
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 22
    Publication Date: 2018-01-08
    Description: IJERPH, Vol. 15, Pages 87: Comparing U.S. Injury Death Estimates from GBD 2015 and CDC WONDER International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health doi: 10.3390/ijerph15010087 Authors: Yue Wu Xunjie Cheng Peishan Ning Peixia Cheng David Schwebel Guoqing Hu Objective: The purpose of the present study was to examine consistency in injury death statistics from the United States CDC Wide-ranging Online Data for Epidemiologic Research (CDC WONDER) with those from GBD 2015 estimates. Methods: Differences in deaths and the percent difference in deaths between GBD 2015 and CDC WONDER were assessed, as were changes in deaths between 2000 and 2015 for the two datasets. Results: From 2000 to 2015, GBD 2015 estimates for the U.S. injury deaths were somewhat higher than CDC WONDER estimates in most categories, with the exception of deaths from falls and from forces of nature, war, and legal intervention in 2015. Encouragingly, the difference in total injury deaths between the two data sources narrowed from 44,897 (percent difference in deaths = 41%) in 2000 to 34,877 (percent difference in deaths = 25%) in 2015. Differences in deaths and percent difference in deaths between the two data sources varied greatly across injury cause and over the assessment years. The two data sources present consistent changes in direction from 2000 to 2015 for all injury causes except for forces of nature, war, and legal intervention, and adverse effects of medical treatment. Conclusions: We conclude that further studies are warranted to interpret the inconsistencies in data and develop estimation approaches that increase the consistency of the two datasets.
    Print ISSN: 1661-7827
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    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering , Medicine
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  • 23
    Publication Date: 2018-01-08
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 147: Exploring the Efficacy of Platinum and Palladium Nanostructures for Organic Molecule Detection via Raman Spectroscopy Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010147 Authors: Minh Tran Alison Whale Sonal Padalkar Noble transition metals, like palladium (Pd) and platinum (Pt), have been well-known for their excellent catalytic and electrochemical properties. However, they have been considered non-active for surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS). In this work, we explore the scattering contributions of Pd and Pt for the detection of organic molecules. The Pd and Pt nanostructures were synthesized on silicon substrate using a modified galvanic displacement method. The results show Pt nanoparticles and dendritic Pd nanostructures with controlled density and size. The influence of surfactants, including sodium dodecyl sulfate and cetyltrimethylammonium bromide, on the size and morphology of the nanostructures was investigated. The Pd and Pt nanostructures with a combination of large size and high density were then used to explore their applicability for the detection of 10−5 M Rhodamine 6G and 10−2 M paraoxon.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 24
    Publication Date: 2018-01-08
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 148: Integrated Giant Magnetoresistance Technology for Approachable Weak Biomagnetic Signal Detections Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010148 Authors: Hui-Min Shen Liang Hu Xin Fu With the extensive applications of biomagnetic signals derived from active biological tissue in both clinical diagnoses and human-computer-interaction, there is an increasing need for approachable weak biomagnetic sensing technology. The inherent merits of giant magnetoresistance (GMR) and its high integration with multiple technologies makes it possible to detect weak biomagnetic signals with micron-sized, non-cooled and low-cost sensors, considering that the magnetic field intensity attenuates rapidly with distance. This paper focuses on the state-of-art in integrated GMR technology for approachable biomagnetic sensing from the perspective of discipline fusion between them. The progress in integrated GMR to overcome the challenges in weak biomagnetic signal detection towards high resolution portable applications is addressed. The various strategies for 1/f noise reduction and sensitivity enhancement in integrated GMR technology for sub-pT biomagnetic signal recording are discussed. In this paper, we review the developments of integrated GMR technology for in vivo/vitro biomagnetic source imaging and demonstrate how integrated GMR can be utilized for biomagnetic field detection. Since the field sensitivity of integrated GMR technology is being pushed to fT/Hz0.5 with the focused efforts, it is believed that the potential of integrated GMR technology will make it preferred choice in weak biomagnetic signal detection in the future.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 25
    Publication Date: 2018-01-09
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 154: Characterization of System Status Signals for Multivariate Time Series Discretization Based on Frequency and Amplitude Variation Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010154 Authors: Woonsang Baek Sujeong Baek Duck Kim Many fault detection methods have been proposed for monitoring the health of various industrial systems. Characterizing the monitored signals is a prerequisite for selecting an appropriate detection method. However, fault detection methods tend to be decided with user’s subjective knowledge or their familiarity with the method, rather than following a predefined selection rule. This study investigates the performance sensitivity of two detection methods, with respect to status signal characteristics of given systems: abrupt variance, characteristic indicator, discernable frequency, and discernable index. Relation between key characteristics indicators from four different real-world systems and the performance of two fault detection methods using pattern recognition are evaluated.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 26
    Publication Date: 2018-01-09
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 157: Gas Classification Using Deep Convolutional Neural Networks Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010157 Authors: Pai Peng Xiaojin Zhao Xiaofang Pan Wenbin Ye In this work, we propose a novel Deep Convolutional Neural Network (DCNN) tailored for gas classification. Inspired by the great success of DCNN in the field of computer vision, we designed a DCNN with up to 38 layers. In general, the proposed gas neural network, named GasNet, consists of: six convolutional blocks, each block consist of six layers; a pooling layer; and a fully-connected layer. Together, these various layers make up a powerful deep model for gas classification. Experimental results show that the proposed DCNN method is an effective technique for classifying electronic nose data. We also demonstrate that the DCNN method can provide higher classification accuracy than comparable Support Vector Machine (SVM) methods and Multiple Layer Perceptron (MLP).
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 27
    Publication Date: 2018-01-09
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 155: On the Performance Evaluation of a MIMO–WCDMA Transmission Architecture for Building Management Systems Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010155 Authors: Eleftherios Tsampasis Panagiotis Gkonis Panagiotis Trakadas Theodοre Zahariadis The goal of this study was to investigate the performance of a realistic wireless sensor nodes deployment in order to support modern building management systems (BMSs). A three-floor building orientation is taken into account, where each node is equipped with a multi-antenna system while a central base station (BS) collects and processes all received information. The BS is also equipped with multiple antennas; hence, a multiple input–multiple output (MIMO) system is formulated. Due to the multiple reflections during transmission in the inner of the building, a wideband code division multiple access (WCDMA) physical layer protocol has been considered, which has already been adopted for third-generation (3G) mobile networks. Results are presented for various MIMO orientations, where the mean transmission power per node is considered as an output metric for a specific signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) requirement and number of resolvable multipath components. In the first set of presented results, the effects of multiple access interference on overall transmission power are highlighted. As the number of mobile nodes per floor or the requested transmission rate increases, MIMO systems of a higher order should be deployed in order to maintain transmission power at adequate levels. In the second set of results, a comparison is performed among transmission in diversity combining and spatial multiplexing mode, which clearly indicate that the first case is the most appropriate solution for indoor communications.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 28
    Publication Date: 2018-01-09
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 151: Oil Spill Detection in Terma-Side-Looking Airborne Radar Images Using Image Features and Region Segmentation Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010151 Authors: Pablo Gil Beatriz Alacid This work presents a method for oil-spill detection on Spanish coasts using aerial Side-Looking Airborne Radar (SLAR) images, which are captured using a Terma sensor. The proposed method uses grayscale image processing techniques to identify the dark spots that represent oil slicks on the sea. The approach is based on two steps. First, the noise regions caused by aircraft movements are detected and labeled in order to avoid the detection of false-positives. Second, a segmentation process guided by a map saliency technique is used to detect image regions that represent oil slicks. The results show that the proposed method is an improvement on the previous approaches for this task when employing SLAR images.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 29
    Publication Date: 2018-01-10
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 167: A Regression Model for Predicting Shape Deformation after Breast Conserving Surgery Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010167 Authors: Hooshiar Zolfagharnasab Sílvia Bessa Sara Oliveira Pedro Faria João Teixeira Jaime Cardoso Hélder Oliveira Breast cancer treatments can have a negative impact on breast aesthetics, in case when surgery is intended to intersect tumor. For many years mastectomy was the only surgical option, but more recently breast conserving surgery (BCS) has been promoted as a liable alternative to treat cancer while preserving most part of the breast. However, there is still a significant number of BCS intervened patients who are unpleasant with the result of the treatment, which leads to self-image issues and emotional overloads. Surgeons recognize the value of a tool to predict the breast shape after BCS to facilitate surgeon/patient communication and allow more educated decisions; however, no such tool is available that is suited for clinical usage. These tools could serve as a way of visually sensing the aesthetic consequences of the treatment. In this research, it is intended to propose a methodology for predict the deformation after BCS by using machine learning techniques. Nonetheless, there is no appropriate dataset containing breast data before and after surgery in order to train a learning model. Therefore, an in-house semi-synthetic dataset is proposed to fulfill the requirement of this research. Using the proposed dataset, several learning methodologies were investigated, and promising outcomes are obtained.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 30
    Publication Date: 2018-01-10
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 161: A Red-Emitting, Multidimensional Sensor for the Simultaneous Cellular Imaging of Biothiols and Phosphate Ions Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010161 Authors: Pilar Herrero-Foncubierta Jose Paredes Maria Giron Rafael Salto Juan Cuerva Delia Miguel Angel Orte The development of new fluorescent probes for cellular imaging is currently a very active field because of the large potential in understanding cell physiology, especially targeting anomalous behaviours due to disease. In particular, red-emitting dyes are keenly sought, as the light in this spectral region presents lower interferences and a deeper depth of penetration in tissues. In this work, we have synthesized a red-emitting, dual probe for the multiplexed intracellular detection of biothiols and phosphate ions. We have prepared a fluorogenic construct involving a silicon-substituted fluorescein for red emission. The fluorogenic reaction is selectively started by the presence of biothiols. In addition, the released fluorescent moiety undergoes an excited-state proton transfer reaction promoted by the presence of phosphate ions, which modulates its fluorescence lifetime, τ, with the total phosphate concentration. Therefore, in a multidimensional approach, the intracellular levels of biothiols and phosphate can be detected simultaneously using a single fluorophore and with spectral clearing of cell autofluorescence interferences. We have applied this concept to different cell lines, including photoreceptor cells, whose levels of biothiols are importantly altered by light irradiation and other oxidants.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 31
    Publication Date: 2018-01-10
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 160: Recognition of Activities of Daily Living Based on Environmental Analyses Using Audio Fingerprinting Techniques: A Systematic Review Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010160 Authors: Ivan Pires Rui Santos Nuno Pombo Nuno Garcia Francisco Flórez-Revuelta Susanna Spinsante Rossitza Goleva Eftim Zdravevski An increase in the accuracy of identification of Activities of Daily Living (ADL) is very important for different goals of Enhanced Living Environments and for Ambient Assisted Living (AAL) tasks. This increase may be achieved through identification of the surrounding environment. Although this is usually used to identify the location, ADL recognition can be improved with the identification of the sound in that particular environment. This paper reviews audio fingerprinting techniques that can be used with the acoustic data acquired from mobile devices. A comprehensive literature search was conducted in order to identify relevant English language works aimed at the identification of the environment of ADLs using data acquired with mobile devices, published between 2002 and 2017. In total, 40 studies were analyzed and selected from 115 citations. The results highlight several audio fingerprinting techniques, including Modified discrete cosine transform (MDCT), Mel-frequency cepstrum coefficients (MFCC), Principal Component Analysis (PCA), Fast Fourier Transform (FFT), Gaussian mixture models (GMM), likelihood estimation, logarithmic moduled complex lapped transform (LMCLT), support vector machine (SVM), constant Q transform (CQT), symmetric pairwise boosting (SPB), Philips robust hash (PRH), linear discriminant analysis (LDA) and discrete cosine transform (DCT).
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 32
    Publication Date: 2018-01-10
    Description: Symmetry, Vol. 10, Pages 20: The Asymmetry is Derived from Mechanical Interlocking of Achiral Axle and Achiral Ring Components –Syntheses and Properties of Optically Pure [2]Rotaxanes– Symmetry doi: 10.3390/sym10010020 Authors: Keiji Hirose Masaya Ukimi Shota Ueda Chie Onoda Ryohei Kano Kyosuke Tsuda Yuko Hinohara Yoshito Tobe Rotaxanes consisting of achiral axle and achiral ring components can possess supramolecular chirality due to their unique geometrical architectures. To synthesize such chiral rotaxanes, we adapted a prerotaxane method based on aminolysis of a metacyclophane type prerotaxane that had planar chirality, which is composed of an achiral stopper unit and a crown ether type ring component. The prerotaxanes were well resolved using chiral HPLC into a pair of enantiomerically pure prerotaxanes, which were transferred into corresponding chiral rotaxanes, respectively. Obtained chiral rotaxanes were revealed to have considerable enantioselectivity.
    Electronic ISSN: 2073-8994
    Topics: Mathematics , Physics
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  • 33
    Publication Date: 2018-01-11
    Description: Entropy, Vol. 20, Pages 42: Classical-Equivalent Bayesian Portfolio Optimization for Electricity Generation Planning Entropy doi: 10.3390/e20010042 Authors: Hellinton Takada Julio Stern Oswaldo Costa Celma Ribeiro There are several electricity generation technologies based on different sources such as wind, biomass, gas, coal, and so on. The consideration of the uncertainties associated with the future costs of such technologies is crucial for planning purposes. In the literature, the allocation of resources in the available technologies has been solved as a mean-variance optimization problem assuming knowledge of the expected values and the covariance matrix of the costs. However, in practice, they are not exactly known parameters. Consequently, the obtained optimal allocations from the mean-variance optimization are not robust to possible estimation errors of such parameters. Additionally, it is usual to have electricity generation technology specialists participating in the planning processes and, obviously, the consideration of useful prior information based on their previous experience is of utmost importance. The Bayesian models consider not only the uncertainty in the parameters, but also the prior information from the specialists. In this paper, we introduce the classical-equivalent Bayesian mean-variance optimization to solve the electricity generation planning problem using both improper and proper prior distributions for the parameters. In order to illustrate our approach, we present an application comparing the classical-equivalent Bayesian with the naive mean-variance optimal portfolios.
    Electronic ISSN: 1099-4300
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Physics
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  • 34
    Publication Date: 2018-01-11
    Description: Diversity, Vol. 10, Pages 2: Acknowledgement to Reviewers of Diversity in 2017 Diversity doi: 10.3390/d10010002 Authors: Diversity Editorial Office Peer review is an essential part in the publication process, ensuring that Diversity maintains high quality standards for its published papers.[...]
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-2818
    Topics: Biology
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  • 35
    Publication Date: 2018-01-11
    Description: Entropy, Vol. 20, Pages 40: Characterizing Complex Dynamics in the Classical and Semi-Classical Duffing Oscillator Using Ordinal Patterns Analysis Entropy doi: 10.3390/e20010040 Authors: Max Trostel Moses Misplon Andrés Aragoneses Arjendu Pattanayak The driven double-well Duffing oscillator is a well-studied system that manifests a wide variety of dynamics, from periodic behavior to chaos, and describes a diverse array of physical systems. It has been shown to be relevant in understanding chaos in the classical to quantum transition. Here we explore the complexity of its dynamics in the classical and semi-classical regimes, using the technique of ordinal pattern analysis. This is of particular relevance to potential experiments in the semi-classical regime. We unveil different dynamical regimes within the chaotic range, which cannot be detected with more traditional statistical tools. These regimes are characterized by different hierarchies and probabilities of the ordinal patterns. Correlation between the Lyapunov exponent and the permutation entropy is revealed that leads us to interpret dips in the Lyapunov exponent as transitions in the dynamics of the system.
    Electronic ISSN: 1099-4300
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Physics
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  • 36
    Publication Date: 2018-01-11
    Description: Entropy, Vol. 20, Pages 37: Gaussian Guided Self-Adaptive Wolf Search Algorithm Based on Information Entropy Theory Entropy doi: 10.3390/e20010037 Authors: Qun Song Simon Fong Suash Deb Thomas Hanne Nowadays, swarm intelligence algorithms are becoming increasingly popular for solving many optimization problems. The Wolf Search Algorithm (WSA) is a contemporary semi-swarm intelligence algorithm designed to solve complex optimization problems and demonstrated its capability especially for large-scale problems. However, it still inherits a common weakness for other swarm intelligence algorithms: that its performance is heavily dependent on the chosen values of the control parameters. In 2016, we published the Self-Adaptive Wolf Search Algorithm (SAWSA), which offers a simple solution to the adaption problem. As a very simple schema, the original SAWSA adaption is based on random guesses, which is unstable and naive. In this paper, based on the SAWSA, we investigate the WSA search behaviour more deeply. A new parameter-guided updater, the Gaussian-guided parameter control mechanism based on information entropy theory, is proposed as an enhancement of the SAWSA. The heuristic updating function is improved. Simulation experiments for the new method denoted as the Gaussian-Guided Self-Adaptive Wolf Search Algorithm (GSAWSA) validate the increased performance of the improved version of WSA in comparison to its standard version and other prevalent swarm algorithms.
    Electronic ISSN: 1099-4300
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  • 37
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    In: Entropy
    Publication Date: 2018-01-11
    Description: Entropy, Vol. 20, Pages 41: Spooky Action at a Temporal Distance Entropy doi: 10.3390/e20010041 Authors: Emily Adlam Since the discovery of Bell’s theorem, the physics community has come to take seriously the possibility that the universe might contain physical processes which are spatially nonlocal, but there has been no such revolution with regard to the possibility of temporally nonlocal processes. In this article, we argue that the assumption of temporal locality is actively limiting progress in the field of quantum foundations. We investigate the origins of the assumption, arguing that it has arisen for historical and pragmatic reasons rather than good scientific ones, then explain why temporal locality is in tension with relativity and review some recent results which cast doubt on its validity.
    Electronic ISSN: 1099-4300
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Physics
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  • 38
    Publication Date: 2018-01-11
    Description: IJERPH, Vol. 15, Pages 110: STI Knowledge in Berlin Adolescents International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health doi: 10.3390/ijerph15010110 Authors: Frederik von Rosen Antonella von Rosen Falk Müller-Riemenschneider Inken Damberg Peter Tinnemann Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) pose a significant threat to individual and public health. They disproportionately affect adolescents and young adults. In a cross-sectional study, we assessed self-rated and factual STI knowledge in a sample of 9th graders in 13 secondary schools in Berlin, Germany. Differences by age, gender, migrant background, and school type were quantified using bivariate and multivariable analyses. A total of 1177 students in 61 classes participated. The mean age was 14.6 (SD = 0.7), 47.5% were female, and 52.9% had at least one immigrant parent. Knowledge of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) was widespread, but other STIs were less known. For example, 46.2% had never heard of chlamydia, 10.8% knew of the HPV vaccination, and only 2.2% were aware that no cure exists for HPV infection. While boys were more likely to describe their knowledge as good, there was no general gender superiority in factual knowledge. Children of immigrants and students in the least academic schools had lower knowledge overall. Our results show that despite their particular risk to contract an STI, adolescents suffer from suboptimal levels of knowledge on STIs beyond HIV. Urgent efforts needed to improve adolescent STI knowledge in order to improve the uptake of primary and secondary prevention.
    Print ISSN: 1661-7827
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    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering , Medicine
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  • 39
    Publication Date: 2018-01-11
    Description: IJERPH, Vol. 15, Pages 108: Preliminary Analyses Showed Short-Term Mental Health Improvements after a Single-Day Manager Training International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health doi: 10.3390/ijerph15010108 Authors: Elena Boysen Birgitta Schiller Kathrin Mörtl Harald Gündel Michael Hölzer Psychosocial working conditions attract more and more attention when it comes to mental health in the workplace. Trying to support managers to deal with their own as well as their employees’ psychological risk factors, we conducted a specific manager training. Within this investigation, we wanted to learn about the training’s effects and acceptance. A single-day manager training was provided in a large industrial company in Germany. The participants were asked to fill out questionnaires regarding their own physical and mental health condition as well as their working situation. Questionnaires were distributed at baseline, 3-month, and 12-month follow-up. At this point of time the investigation is still ongoing. The current article focuses on short-term preliminary effects. Analyses only included participants that already completed baseline and three months follow-up. Preliminary results from three-month follow-up survey (n = 33, nmale = 30, Mage = 47.5) indicated positive changes in the manager’s mental health condition measured by the Patient Health Questionnaire for depression (PHQ-9: Mt1 = 3.82, Mt2 = 3.15). Training managers about common mental disorders and risk factors at the workplace within a single-day workshop seems to promote positive effects on their own mental health. Especially working with the managers on their own early stress symptoms might have been an important element.
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    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering , Medicine
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  • 40
    Publication Date: 2018-01-11
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 179: A Continuous Identity Authentication Scheme Based on Physiological and Behavioral Characteristics Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010179 Authors: Guannan Wu Jian Wang Yongrong Zhang Shuai Jiang Wearable devices have flourished over the past ten years providing great advantages to people and, recently, they have also been used for identity authentication. Most of the authentication methods adopt a one-time authentication manner which cannot provide continuous certification. To address this issue, we present a two-step authentication method based on an own-built fingertip sensor device which can capture motion data (e.g., acceleration and angular velocity) and physiological data (e.g., a photoplethysmography (PPG) signal) simultaneously. When the device is worn on the user’s fingertip, it will automatically recognize whether the wearer is a legitimate user or not. More specifically, multisensor data is collected and analyzed to extract representative and intensive features. Then, human activity recognition is applied as the first step to enhance the practicability of the authentication system. After correctly discriminating the motion state, a one-class machine learning algorithm is applied for identity authentication as the second step. When a user wears the device, the authentication process is carried on automatically at set intervals. Analyses were conducted using data from 40 individuals across various operational scenarios. Extensive experiments were executed to examine the effectiveness of the proposed approach, which achieved an average accuracy rate of 98.5% and an F1-score of 86.67%. Our results suggest that the proposed scheme provides a feasible and practical solution for authentication.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 41
    Publication Date: 2018-01-11
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 182: An Efficient Wireless Sensor Network for Industrial Monitoring and Control Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010182 Authors: Juan Aponte-Luis Juan Gómez-Galán Fernando Gómez-Bravo Manuel Sánchez-Raya Javier Alcina-Espigado Pedro Teixido-Rovira This paper presents the design of a wireless sensor network particularly designed for remote monitoring and control of industrial parameters. The article describes the network components, protocol and sensor deployment, aimed to accomplish industrial constraint and to assure reliability and low power consumption. A particular case of study is presented. The system consists of a base station, gas sensing nodes, a tree-based routing scheme for the wireless sensor nodes and a real-time monitoring application that operates from a remote computer and a mobile phone. The system assures that the industrial safety quality and the measurement and monitoring system achieves an efficient industrial monitoring operations. The robustness of the developed system and the security in the communications have been guaranteed both in hardware and software level. The system is flexible and can be adapted to different environments. The testing of the system confirms the feasibility of the proposed implementation and validates the functional requirements of the developed devices, the networking solution and the power consumption management.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 42
    Publication Date: 2018-01-11
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 177: Small Imaging Depth LIDAR and DCNN-Based Localization for Automated Guided Vehicle Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010177 Authors: Seigo Ito Shigeyoshi Hiratsuka Mitsuhiko Ohta Hiroyuki Matsubara Masaru Ogawa We present our third prototype sensor and a localization method for Automated Guided Vehicles (AGVs), for which small imaging LIght Detection and Ranging (LIDAR) and fusion-based localization are fundamentally important. Our small imaging LIDAR, named the Single-Photon Avalanche Diode (SPAD) LIDAR, uses a time-of-flight method and SPAD arrays. A SPAD is a highly sensitive photodetector capable of detecting at the single-photon level, and the SPAD LIDAR has two SPAD arrays on the same chip for detection of laser light and environmental light. Therefore, the SPAD LIDAR simultaneously outputs range image data and monocular image data with the same coordinate system and does not require external calibration among outputs. As AGVs travel both indoors and outdoors with vibration, this calibration-less structure is particularly useful for AGV applications. We also introduce a fusion-based localization method, named SPAD DCNN, which uses the SPAD LIDAR and employs a Deep Convolutional Neural Network (DCNN). SPAD DCNN can fuse the outputs of the SPAD LIDAR: range image data, monocular image data and peak intensity image data. The SPAD DCNN has two outputs: the regression result of the position of the SPAD LIDAR and the classification result of the existence of a target to be approached. Our third prototype sensor and the localization method are evaluated in an indoor environment by assuming various AGV trajectories. The results show that the sensor and localization method improve the localization accuracy.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 43
    Publication Date: 2018-01-11
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 171: A New Localization System for Indoor Service Robots in Low Luminance and Slippery Indoor Environment Using Afocal Optical Flow Sensor Based Sensor Fusion Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010171 Authors: Dong-Hoon Yi Tae-Jae Lee Dong-Il Cho In this paper, a new localization system utilizing afocal optical flow sensor (AOFS) based sensor fusion for indoor service robots in low luminance and slippery environment is proposed, where conventional localization systems do not perform well. To accurately estimate the moving distance of a robot in a slippery environment, the robot was equipped with an AOFS along with two conventional wheel encoders. To estimate the orientation of the robot, we adopted a forward-viewing mono-camera and a gyroscope. In a very low luminance environment, it is hard to conduct conventional feature extraction and matching for localization. Instead, the interior space structure from an image and robot orientation was assessed. To enhance the appearance of image boundary, rolling guidance filter was applied after the histogram equalization. The proposed system was developed to be operable on a low-cost processor and implemented on a consumer robot. Experiments were conducted in low illumination condition of 0.1 lx and carpeted environment. The robot moved for 20 times in a 1.5 × 2.0 m square trajectory. When only wheel encoders and a gyroscope were used for robot localization, the maximum position error was 10.3 m and the maximum orientation error was 15.4°. Using the proposed system, the maximum position error and orientation error were found as 0.8 m and within 1.0°, respectively.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 44
    Publication Date: 2018-01-11
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 173: Radar HRRP Target Recognition Based on Stacked Autoencoder and Extreme Learning Machine Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010173 Authors: Feixiang Zhao Yongxiang Liu Kai Huo Shuanghui Zhang Zhongshuai Zhang A novel radar high-resolution range profile (HRRP) target recognition method based on a stacked autoencoder (SAE) and extreme learning machine (ELM) is presented in this paper. As a key component of deep structure, the SAE does not only learn features by making use of data, it also obtains feature expressions at different levels of data. However, with the deep structure, it is hard to achieve good generalization performance with a fast learning speed. ELM, as a new learning algorithm for single hidden layer feedforward neural networks (SLFNs), has attracted great interest from various fields for its fast learning speed and good generalization performance. However, ELM needs more hidden nodes than conventional tuning-based learning algorithms due to the random set of input weights and hidden biases. In addition, the existing ELM methods cannot utilize the class information of targets well. To solve this problem, a regularized ELM method based on the class information of the target is proposed. In this paper, SAE and the regularized ELM are combined to make full use of their advantages and make up for each of their shortcomings. The effectiveness of the proposed method is demonstrated by experiments with measured radar HRRP data. The experimental results show that the proposed method can achieve good performance in the two aspects of real-time and accuracy, especially when only a few training samples are available.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 45
    Publication Date: 2018-01-11
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 174: Feasibility of Detecting Natural Frequencies of Hydraulic Turbines While in Operation, Using Strain Gauges Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010174 Authors: David Valentín Alexandre Presas Matias Bossio Mònica Egusquiza Eduard Egusquiza Carme Valero Nowadays, hydropower plays an essential role in the energy market. Due to their fast response and regulation capacity, hydraulic turbines operate at off-design conditions with a high number of starts and stops. In this situation, dynamic loads and stresses over the structure are high, registering some failures over time, especially in the runner. Therefore, it is important to know the dynamic response of the runner while in operation, i.e., the natural frequencies, damping and mode shapes, in order to avoid resonance and fatigue problems. Detecting the natural frequencies of hydraulic turbine runners while in operation is challenging, because they are inaccessible structures strongly affected by their confinement in water. Strain gauges are used to measure the stresses of hydraulic turbine runners in operation during commissioning. However, in this paper, the feasibility of using them to detect the natural frequencies of hydraulic turbines runners while in operation is studied. For this purpose, a large Francis turbine runner (444 MW) was instrumented with several strain gauges at different positions. First, a complete experimental strain modal testing (SMT) of the runner in air was performed using the strain gauges and accelerometers. Then, the natural frequencies of the runner were estimated during operation by means of analyzing accurately transient events or rough operating conditions.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 46
    Publication Date: 2018-01-11
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 169: A Police and Insurance Joint Management System Based on High Precision BDS/GPS Positioning Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010169 Authors: Wenwei Zuo Chi Guo Jingnan Liu Xuan Peng Min Yang Car ownership in China reached 194 million vehicles at the end of 2016. The traffic congestion index (TCI) exceeds 2.0 during rush hour in some cities. Inefficient processing for minor traffic accidents is considered to be one of the leading causes for road traffic jams. Meanwhile, the process after an accident is quite troublesome. The main reason is that it is almost always impossible to get the complete chain of evidence when the accident happens. Accordingly, a police and insurance joint management system is developed which is based on high precision BeiDou Navigation Satellite System (BDS)/Global Positioning System (GPS) positioning to process traffic accidents. First of all, an intelligent vehicle rearview mirror terminal is developed. The terminal applies a commonly used consumer electronic device with single frequency navigation. Based on the high precision BDS/GPS positioning algorithm, its accuracy can reach sub-meter level in the urban areas. More specifically, a kernel driver is built to realize the high precision positioning algorithm in an Android HAL layer. Thus the third-party application developers can call the general location Application Programming Interface (API) of the original standard Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) to get high precision positioning results. Therefore, the terminal can provide lane level positioning service for car users. Next, a remote traffic accident processing platform is built to provide big data analysis and management. According to the big data analysis of information collected by BDS high precision intelligent sense service, vehicle behaviors can be obtained. The platform can also automatically match and screen the data that uploads after an accident to achieve accurate reproduction of the scene. Thus, it helps traffic police and insurance personnel to complete remote responsibility identification and survey for the accident. Thirdly, a rapid processing flow is established in this article to meet the requirements to quickly handle traffic accidents. The traffic police can remotely identify accident responsibility and the insurance personnel can remotely survey an accident. Moreover, the police and insurance joint management system has been carried out in Wuhan, Central China’s Hubei Province, and Wuxi, Eastern China’s Jiangsu Province. In a word, a system is developed to obtain and analyze multisource data including precise positioning and visual information, and a solution is proposed for efficient processing of traffic accidents.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 47
    Publication Date: 2018-01-11
    Description: Symmetry, Vol. 10, Pages 24: Efficient Location of Resources in Cylindrical Networks Symmetry doi: 10.3390/sym10010024 Authors: José Carreño José Martínez María Puertas The location of resources in a network satisfying some optimization property is a classical combinatorial problem that can be modeled and solved by using graphs. Key tools in this problem are the domination-type properties, which have been defined and widely studied in different types of graph models, such as undirected and directed graphs, finite and infinite graphs, simple graphs and hypergraphs. When the required optimization property is that every node of the network must have access to exactly one node with the desired resource, the appropriate models are the efficient dominating sets. However, the existence of these vertex sets is not guaranteed in every graph, so relaxing some conditions is necessary to ensure the existence of some kind of dominating sets, as efficient as possible, in a larger number of graphs. In this paper, we study independent [ 1 , 2 ] -sets, a generalization of efficient dominating sets defined by Chellali et al., in the case of cylindrical networks. It is known that efficient dominating sets exist in very special cases of cylinders, but the particular symmetry of these graphs will allow us to provide regular patterns that guarantee the existence of independent [ 1 , 2 ] -sets in every cylinder, except in one single case, and to compute exact values of the optimal parameter, the independent [ 1 , 2 ] -number, in cylinders of selected sizes.
    Electronic ISSN: 2073-8994
    Topics: Mathematics , Physics
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  • 48
    Publication Date: 2018-01-12
    Description: Diversity, Vol. 10, Pages 3: Bee Diversity and Solanum didymum (Solanaceae) Flower–Visitor Network in an Atlantic Forest Fragment in Southern Brazil Diversity doi: 10.3390/d10010003 Authors: Francieli Lando Priscila Lustosa Cyntia P. da Luz Maria Buschini Brazil’s Atlantic Forest biome is currently undergoing forest loss due to repeated episodes of devastation. In this biome, bees perform the most frequent pollination system. Over the last decade, network analysis has been extensively applied to the study of plant–pollinator interactions, as it provides a consistent view of the structure of plant–pollinator interactions. The aim of this study was to use palynological studies to obtain an understanding of the relationship between floral visitor bees and the pioneer plant S. didymum in a fragment of the Atlantic Forest, and also learn about the other plants that interact to form this network. Five hundred bees were collected from 32 species distributed into five families: Andrenidae, Apidae, Colletidae, Megachilidae, and Halictidae. The interaction network consisted of 21 bee species and 35 pollen types. The Solanum-type bee species with the highest number of interactions were Anthrenoides sp. 1, Augochlora sp. 2, and Augochloropsis notophos, representing 71.78% of their interactions. Augochloropsis notophos and Augochlora sp. 2 were the only common species in the flowers of S. didymum. Given the results of our study, we conclude that Solanum is an important source of pollen grains for several native bee species, mainly for the solitary species that are more diverse in the south of Brazil. Moreover, our results indicate that bees from the families Halictidae (A. notophos, Augochlora) and Andrenidae (Anthrenoides) are the pollinators of S. didymum.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-2818
    Topics: Biology
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  • 49
    Publication Date: 2018-01-12
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 188: Error Recovery in the Time-Triggered Paradigm with FTT-CAN Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010188 Authors: Luis Marques Verónica Vasconcelos Paulo Pedreiras Luís Almeida Data networks are naturally prone to interferences that can corrupt messages, leading to performance degradation or even to critical failure of the corresponding distributed system. To improve resilience of critical systems, time-triggered networks are frequently used, based on communication schedules defined at design-time. These networks offer prompt error detection, but slow error recovery that can only be compensated with bandwidth overprovisioning. On the contrary, the Flexible Time-Triggered (FTT) paradigm uses online traffic scheduling, which enables a compromise between error detection and recovery that can achieve timely recovery with a fraction of the needed bandwidth. This article presents a new method to recover transmission errors in a time-triggered Controller Area Network (CAN) network, based on the Flexible Time-Triggered paradigm, namely FTT-CAN. The method is based on using a server (traffic shaper) to regulate the retransmission of corrupted or omitted messages. We show how to design the server to simultaneously: (1) meet a predefined reliability goal, when considering worst case error recovery scenarios bounded probabilistically by a Poisson process that models the fault arrival rate; and, (2) limit the direct and indirect interference in the message set, preserving overall system schedulability. Extensive simulations with multiple scenarios, based on practical and randomly generated systems, show a reduction of two orders of magnitude in the average bandwidth taken by the proposed error recovery mechanism, when compared with traditional approaches available in the literature based on adding extra pre-defined transmission slots.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 50
    Publication Date: 2018-01-12
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 195: An Improved Coarse Alignment Algorithm for Odometer-Aided SINS Based on the Optimization Design Method Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010195 Authors: Yonggang Zhang Li Luo Tao Fang Ning Li Guoqing Wang An improved coarse alignment (ICA) algorithm is proposed in this paper with a focus on improving alignment accuracy of odometer-aided strapdown inertial navigation system (SINS) under variable velocity and variable acceleration condition. In the proposed algorithm, the outputs of inertial sensors and odometer in a sampling interval are linearized rather than assumed to be a constant, which improves the accuracy of the vector observations and the precision of coarse alignment. Simulation and field test results illustrate that, under variable velocity and variable acceleration condition, the proposed algorithm can obtain a better alignment performance than conventional coarse alignment method.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 51
    Publication Date: 2018-01-12
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 191: LED-CT Scan for pH Distribution on a Cross-Section of Cell Culture Medium Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010191 Authors: Nobuya Higashino Toshio Takayama Hiroaki Ito Mitsuhiro Horade Yasutaka Yamaguchi Chia-Hung Dylan Tsai Makoto Kaneko In cell culture, the pH of the culture medium is one of the most important conditions. However, the culture medium may have non-uniform pH distribution due to activities of cells and changes in the environment. Although it is possible to measure the pH distribution with an existing pH meter using distributed electrodes, the method involves direct contact with the medium and would greatly increase the risk of contamination. Here in this paper, we propose a computed tomography (CT) scan for measuring pH distribution using the color change of phenol red with a light-emitting diode (LED) light source. Using the principle of CT scan, we can measure pH distribution without contacting culture medium, and thus, decrease the risk of contamination. We have developed the device with a LED, an array of photo receivers and a rotation mechanism. The system is firstly calibrated with different shapes of wooden objects that do not pass light, we succeeded in obtaining their 3D topographies. The system was also used for measuring a culture medium with two different pH values, it was possible to obtain a pH distribution that clearly shows the boundary.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 52
    Publication Date: 2018-01-12
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 190: A Portable Dynamic Laser Speckle System for Sensing Long-Term Changes Caused by Treatments in Painting Conservation Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010190 Authors: Alberto Pérez Rolando González-Peña Roberto Braga Jr. Ángel Perles Eva Pérez–Marín Fernando García-Diego Dynamic laser speckle (DLS) is used as a reliable sensor of activity for all types of materials. Traditional applications are based on high-rate captures (usually greater than 10 frames-per-second, fps). Even for drying processes in conservation treatments, where there is a high level of activity in the first moments after the application and slower activity after some minutes or hours, the process is based on the acquisition of images at a time rate that is the same in moments of high and low activity. In this work, we present an alternative approach to track the drying process of protective layers and other painting conservation processes that take a long time to reduce their levels of activity. We illuminate, using three different wavelength lasers, a temporary protector (cyclododecane) and a varnish, and monitor them using a low fps rate during long-term drying. The results are compared to the traditional method. This work also presents a monitoring method that uses portable equipment. The results present the feasibility of using the portable device and show the improved sensitivity of the dynamic laser speckle when sensing the long-term process for drying cyclododecane and varnish in conservation.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 53
    Publication Date: 2018-01-12
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 183: Genetic Algorithm-Based Motion Estimation Method using Orientations and EMGs for Robot Controls Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010183 Authors: Jeongsook Chae Yong Jin Yunsick Sung Kyungeun Cho Demand for interactive wearable devices is rapidly increasing with the development of smart devices. To accurately utilize wearable devices for remote robot controls, limited data should be analyzed and utilized efficiently. For example, the motions by a wearable device, called Myo device, can be estimated by measuring its orientation, and calculating a Bayesian probability based on these orientation data. Given that Myo device can measure various types of data, the accuracy of its motion estimation can be increased by utilizing these additional types of data. This paper proposes a motion estimation method based on weighted Bayesian probability and concurrently measured data, orientations and electromyograms (EMG). The most probable motion among estimated is treated as a final estimated motion. Thus, recognition accuracy can be improved when compared to the traditional methods that employ only a single type of data. In our experiments, seven subjects perform five predefined motions. When orientation is measured by the traditional methods, the sum of the motion estimation errors is 37.3%; likewise, when only EMG data are used, the error in motion estimation by the proposed method was also 37.3%. The proposed combined method has an error of 25%. Therefore, the proposed method reduces motion estimation errors by 12%.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 54
    Publication Date: 2018-01-12
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 189: Surgical Dynamometer to Simultaneously Measure the Tension Forces and the Distance between Wound Edges during the Closure of a Laparotomy Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010189 Authors: Joan Roca Miquel Nogués Rafael Villalobos María Mías Martí Comellas Cristina Gas Jorge Olsina The closure of the abdominal wall after making a laparotomy is a major challenge for surgeons, since a significant percentage of closures fail and incisional hernias rise. The suture has to withstand the forces required to close the incision, while not hindering the adequate wound healing progression. Currently, there is no surgical measuring device that could be used to determine the required closing forces, which can be very different depending on the patient. This paper presents a dynamometer to measure the tension forces to be applied while closing a surgical incision, and it simultaneously measures the distance between wound edges. It is a compass-like instrument. A mechanism between the two legs incorporates a load cell, whose signal is read by an electronic device that computes the values of the tension forces between wound edges. An angular position sensor at the pin joint between legs provides the distance between both sides of the incision. Measuring capabilities of the instrument prototype were verified at the laboratory. Thereafter, its functionality was demonstrated in experimental surgery tests. Therefore, the instrument could be very useful in clinical applications, assisting personalized surgical techniques.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 55
    Publication Date: 2018-01-12
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 186: Novel Spectroscopic and Electrochemical Sensors and Nanoprobes for the Characterization of Food and Biological Antioxidants Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010186 Authors: Reşat Apak Sema Demirci Çekiç Ayşem Üzer Saliha Çelik Mustafa Bener Burcu Bekdeşer Ziya Can Şener Sağlam Ayşe Önem Erol Erçağ Since an unbalanced excess of reactive oxygen/nitrogen species (ROS/RNS) causes various diseases, determination of antioxidants that can counter oxidative stress is important in food and biological analyses. Optical/electrochemical nanosensors have attracted attention in antioxidant activity (AOA) assessment because of their increased sensitivity and selectivity. Optical sensors offer advantages such as low cost, flexibility, remote control, speed, miniaturization and on-site/in situ analysis. Electrochemical sensors using noble metal nanoparticles on modified electrodes better catalyze bioelectrochemical reactions. We summarize the design principles of colorimetric sensors and nanoprobes for food antioxidants (including electron-transfer based and ROS/RNS scavenging assays) and important milestones contributed by our laboratory. We present novel sensors and nanoprobes together with their mechanisms and analytical performances. Our colorimetric sensors for AOA measurement made use of cupric-neocuproine and ferric-phenanthroline complexes immobilized on a Nafion membrane. We recently designed an optical oxidant/antioxidant sensor using N,N-dimethyl-p-phenylene diamine (DMPD) as probe, from which ROS produced colored DMPD-quinone cationic radicals electrostatically retained on a Nafion membrane. The attenuation of initial color by antioxidants enabled indirect AOA estimation. The surface plasmon resonance absorption of silver nanoparticles as a result of enlargement of citrate-reduced seed particles by antioxidant addition enabled a linear response of AOA. We determined biothiols with Ellman reagent−derivatized gold nanoparticles.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 56
    Publication Date: 2018-01-12
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 184: A Time-Domain Analog Spatial Compressed Sensing Encoder for Multi-Channel Neural Recording Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010184 Authors: Takayuki Okazawa Ippei Akita A time-domain analog spatial compressed sensing encoder for neural recording applications is proposed. Owing to the advantage of MEMS technologies, the number of channels on a silicon neural probe array has doubled in 7.4 years, and therefore, a greater number of recording channels and higher density of front-end circuitry is required. Since neural signals such as action potential (AP) have wider signal bandwidth than that of an image sensor, a data compression technique is essentially required for arrayed neural recording systems. In this paper, compressed sensing (CS) is employed for data reduction, and a novel time-domain analog CS encoder is proposed. A simpler and lower power circuit than conventional analog or digital CS encoders can be realized by using the proposed CS encoder. A prototype of the proposed encoder was fabricated in a 180 nm 1P6M CMOS process, and it achieved an active area of 0.0342 mm 2 / ch . and an energy efficiency of 25.0 pJ / ch . · conv .
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 57
    Publication Date: 2018-01-12
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 187: LSPR and Interferometric Sensor Modalities Combined Using a Double-Clad Optical Fiber Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010187 Authors: Harald Muri Andon Bano Dag Hjelme We report on characterization of an optical fiber-based multi-parameter sensor concept combining localized surface plasmon resonance (LSPR) signal and interferometric sensing using a double-clad optical fiber. The sensor consists of a micro-Fabry-Perot in the form of a hemispherical stimuli-responsive hydrogel with immobilized gold nanorods on the facet of a cleaved double-clad optical fiber. The swelling degree of the hydrogel is measured interferometrically using the single-mode inner core, while the LSPR signal is measured using the multi-mode inner cladding. The quality of the interferometric signal is comparable to previous work on hydrogel micro-Fabry-Perot sensors despite having gold nanorods immobilized in the hydrogel. We characterize the effect of hydrogel swelling and variation of bulk solution refractive index on the LSPR peak wavelength. The results show that pH-induced hydrogel swelling causes only weak redshifts of the longitudinal LSPR mode, while increased bulk refractive index using glycerol and sucrose causes large blueshifts. The redshifts are likely due to reduced plasmon coupling of the side-by-side configuration as the interparticle distance increases with increasing swelling. The blueshifts with increasing bulk refractive index are likely due to alteration of the surface electronic structure of the gold nanorods donated by the anionic polymer network and glycerol or sucrose solutions. The recombination of biotin-streptavidin on gold nanorods in hydrogel showed a 7.6 nm redshift of the longitudinal LSPR. The LSPR response of biotin-streptavidin recombination is due to the change in local refractive index (RI), which is possible to discriminate from the LSPR response due to changes in bulk RI. In spite of the large LSPR shifts due to bulk refractive index, we show, using biotin-functionalized gold nanorods binding to streptavidin, that LSPR signal from gold nanorods embedded in the anionic hydrogel can be used for label-free biosensing. These results demonstrate the utility of immobilizing gold nanorods in a hydrogel on a double-clad optical fiber-end facet to obtain multi-parameter sensing.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 58
    Publication Date: 2018-01-12
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 185: Mapping Early, Middle and Late Rice Extent Using Sentinel-1A and Landsat-8 Data in the Poyang Lake Plain, China Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010185 Authors: Haifeng Tian Mingquan Wu Li Wang Zheng Niu Areas and spatial distribution information of paddy rice are important for managing food security, water use, and climate change. However, there are many difficulties in mapping paddy rice, especially mapping multi-season paddy rice in rainy regions, including differences in phenology, the influence of weather, and farmland fragmentation. To resolve these problems, a novel multi-season paddy rice mapping approach based on Sentinel-1A and Landsat-8 data is proposed. First, Sentinel-1A data were enhanced based on the fact that the backscattering coefficient of paddy rice varies according to its growth stage. Second, cropland information was enhanced based on the fact that the NDVI of cropland in winter is lower than that in the growing season. Then, paddy rice and cropland areas were extracted using a K-Means unsupervised classifier with enhanced images. Third, to further improve the paddy rice classification accuracy, cropland information was utilized to optimize distribution of paddy rice by the fact that paddy rice must be planted in cropland. Classification accuracy was validated based on ground-data from 25 field survey quadrats measuring 600 m × 600 m. The results show that: multi-season paddy rice planting areas effectively was extracted by the method and adjusted early rice area of 1630.84 km2, adjusted middle rice area of 556.21 km2, and adjusted late rice area of 3138.37 km2. The overall accuracy was 98.10%, with a kappa coefficient of 0.94.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 59
    Publication Date: 2018-01-12
    Description: Symmetry, Vol. 10, Pages 26: The Variety of 7-Dimensional 2-Step Nilpotent Lie Algebras Symmetry doi: 10.3390/sym10010026 Authors: María Alvarez In this note, we consider degenerations between complex 2-step nilpotent Lie algebras of dimension 7 within the variety N 7 2 . This allows us to obtain the rigid algebras in N 7 2 , whose closures give the irreducible components of the variety.
    Electronic ISSN: 2073-8994
    Topics: Mathematics , Physics
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  • 60
    Publication Date: 2018-01-12
    Description: Symmetry, Vol. 10, Pages 25: A Critical Note on Symmetry Contact Artifacts and the Evaluation of the Quality of Homology Models Symmetry doi: 10.3390/sym10010025 Authors: Dipali Singh Karen Berntsen Coos Baakman Gert Vriend Tapobrata Lahiri It is much easier to determine a protein’s sequence than to determine its three dimensional structure and consequently homology modeling will be an essential aspect of most studies that require 3D protein structure data. Homology modeling templates tend to be PDB files. About 88% of all protein structures in the PDB have been determined with X-ray crystallography, and thus are based on crystals that by necessity hold non-natural packing contacts in accordance with the crystal symmetry. Active site residues, residues involved in intermolecular interactions, residues that get post-translationally modified, or other sites of interest, normally are located at the protein surface so that it is particularly important to correctly model surface-located residues. Unfortunately, surface residues are just those that suffer most from crystal packing artifacts. Our study of the influence of crystal packing artifacts on the quality of homology models reveals that this influence is much larger than generally assumed, and that the evaluation of the quality of homology models should properly account for these artifacts.
    Electronic ISSN: 2073-8994
    Topics: Mathematics , Physics
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  • 61
    Publication Date: 2018-01-13
    Description: Entropy, Vol. 20, Pages 54: Synchronization in Fractional-Order Complex-Valued Delayed Neural Networks Entropy doi: 10.3390/e20010054 Authors: Weiwei Zhang Jinde Cao Dingyuan Chen Fuad Alsaadi This paper discusses the synchronization of fractional order complex valued neural networks (FOCVNN) at the presence of time delay. Synchronization criterions are achieved through the employment of a linear feedback control and comparison theorem of fractional order linear systems with delay. Feasibility and effectiveness of the proposed system are validated through numerical simulations.
    Electronic ISSN: 1099-4300
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Physics
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  • 62
    Publication Date: 2018-01-13
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 207: Current Technologies of Electrochemical Immunosensors: Perspective on Signal Amplification Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010207 Authors: Il-Hoon Cho Jongsung Lee Jiyeon Kim Min-soo Kang Jean Paik Seockmo Ku Hyun-Mo Cho Joseph Irudayaraj Dong-Hyung Kim An electrochemical immunosensor employs antibodies as capture and detection means to produce electrical charges for the quantitative analysis of target molecules. This sensor type can be utilized as a miniaturized device for the detection of point-of-care testing (POCT). Achieving high-performance analysis regarding sensitivity has been one of the key issues with developing this type of biosensor system. Many modern nanotechnology efforts allowed for the development of innovative electrochemical biosensors with high sensitivity by employing various nanomaterials that facilitate the electron transfer and carrying capacity of signal tracers in combination with surface modification and bioconjugation techniques. In this review, we introduce novel nanomaterials (e.g., carbon nanotube, graphene, indium tin oxide, nanowire and metallic nanoparticles) in order to construct a high-performance electrode. Also, we describe how to increase the number of signal tracers by employing nanomaterials as carriers and making the polymeric enzyme complex associated with redox cycling for signal amplification. The pros and cons of each method are considered throughout this review. We expect that these reviewed strategies for signal enhancement will be applied to the next versions of lateral-flow paper chromatography and microfluidic immunosensor, which are considered the most practical POCT biosensor platforms.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 63
    Publication Date: 2018-01-13
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 209: Anomaly Detection in Nanofibrous Materials by CNN-Based Self-Similarity Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010209 Authors: Paolo Napoletano Flavio Piccoli Raimondo Schettini Automatic detection and localization of anomalies in nanofibrous materials help to reduce the cost of the production process and the time of the post-production visual inspection process. Amongst all the monitoring methods, those exploiting Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) imaging are the most effective. In this paper, we propose a region-based method for the detection and localization of anomalies in SEM images, based on Convolutional Neural Networks (CNNs) and self-similarity. The method evaluates the degree of abnormality of each subregion of an image under consideration by computing a CNN-based visual similarity with respect to a dictionary of anomaly-free subregions belonging to a training set. The proposed method outperforms the state of the art.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 64
    Publication Date: 2018-01-13
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 208: Sitting Posture Monitoring System Based on a Low-Cost Load Cell Using Machine Learning Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010208 Authors: Jongryun Roh Hyeong-jun Park Kwang Lee Joonho Hyeong Sayup Kim Boreom Lee Sitting posture monitoring systems (SPMSs) help assess the posture of a seated person in real-time and improve sitting posture. To date, SPMS studies reported have required many sensors mounted on the backrest plate and seat plate of a chair. The present study, therefore, developed a system that measures a total of six sitting postures including the posture that applied a load to the backrest plate, with four load cells mounted only on the seat plate. Various machine learning algorithms were applied to the body weight ratio measured by the developed SPMS to identify the method that most accurately classified the actual sitting posture of the seated person. After classifying the sitting postures using several classifiers, average and maximum classification rates of 97.20% and 97.94%, respectively, were obtained from nine subjects with a support vector machine using the radial basis function kernel; the results obtained by this classifier showed a statistically significant difference from the results of multiple classifications using other classifiers. The proposed SPMS was able to classify six sitting postures including the posture with loading on the backrest and showed the possibility of classifying the sitting posture even though the number of sensors is reduced.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 65
    Publication Date: 2018-01-13
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 196: Underwater Object Segmentation Based on Optical Features Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010196 Authors: Zhe Chen Zhen Zhang Yang Bu Fengzhao Dai Tanghuai Fan Huibin Wang Underwater optical environments are seriously affected by various optical inputs, such as artificial light, sky light, and ambient scattered light. The latter two can block underwater object segmentation tasks, since they inhibit the emergence of objects of interest and distort image information, while artificial light can contribute to segmentation. Artificial light often focuses on the object of interest, and, therefore, we can initially identify the region of target objects if the collimation of artificial light is recognized. Based on this concept, we propose an optical feature extraction, calculation, and decision method to identify the collimated region of artificial light as a candidate object region. Then, the second phase employs a level set method to segment the objects of interest within the candidate region. This two-phase structure largely removes background noise and highlights the outline of underwater objects. We test the performance of the method with diverse underwater datasets, demonstrating that it outperforms previous methods.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 66
    Publication Date: 2018-01-13
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 197: Effective Data-Driven Calibration for a Galvanometric Laser Scanning System Using Binocular Stereo Vision Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010197 Authors: Junchao Tu Liyan Zhang A new solution to the problem of galvanometric laser scanning (GLS) system calibration is presented. Under the machine learning framework, we build a single-hidden layer feedforward neural network (SLFN)to represent the GLS system, which takes the digital control signal at the drives of the GLS system as input and the space vector of the corresponding outgoing laser beam as output. The training data set is obtained with the aid of a moving mechanism and a binocular stereo system. The parameters of the SLFN are efficiently solved in a closed form by using extreme learning machine (ELM). By quantitatively analyzing the regression precision with respective to the number of hidden neurons in the SLFN, we demonstrate that the proper number of hidden neurons can be safely chosen from a broad interval to guarantee good generalization performance. Compared to the traditional model-driven calibration, the proposed calibration method does not need a complex modeling process and is more accurate and stable. As the output of the network is the space vectors of the outgoing laser beams, it costs much less training time and can provide a uniform solution to both laser projection and 3D-reconstruction, in contrast with the existing data-driven calibration method which only works for the laser triangulation problem. Calibration experiment, projection experiment and 3D reconstruction experiment are respectively conducted to test the proposed method, and good results are obtained.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 67
    Publication Date: 2018-01-13
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 202: High-Temperature Sensor Based on Fabry-Perot Interferometer in Microfiber Tip Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010202 Authors: Zhenshi Chen Songsong Xiong Shecheng Gao Hui Zhang Lei Wan Xincheng Huang Bingsen Huang Yuanhua Feng Weiping Liu Zhaohui Li A miniaturized tip Fabry-Perot interferometer (tip-FPI) is proposed for high-temperature sensing. It is simply fabricated for the first time by splicing a short length of microfiber (MF) to the cleaved end of a standard single mode fiber (SMF) with precise control of the relative cross section position. Such a MF acts as a Fabry-Perot (FP) cavity and serves as a tip sensor. A change in temperature modifies the length and refractive index of the FP cavity, and then a corresponding change in the reflected interference spectrum can be observed. High temperatures of up to 1000 °C are measured in the experiments, and a high sensitivity of 13.6 pm/°C is achieved. This compact sensor, with tip diameter and length both of tens of microns, is suitable for localized detection, especially in harsh environments.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 68
    Publication Date: 2018-01-13
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 198: Characteristics of BeiDou Navigation Satellite System Multipath and Its Mitigation Method Based on Kalman Filter and Rauch-Tung-Striebel Smoother Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010198 Authors: Qiuzhao Zhang Wei Yang Shubi Zhang Xin Liu Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) carrier phase measurement for short baseline meets the requirements of deformation monitoring of large structures. However, the carrier phase multipath effect is the main error source with double difference (DD) processing. There are lots of methods to deal with the multipath errors of Global Position System (GPS) carrier phase data. The BeiDou navigation satellite System (BDS) multipath mitigation is still a research hotspot because the unique constellation design of BDS makes it different to mitigate multipath effects compared to GPS. Multipath error periodically repeats for its strong correlation to geometry of satellites, reflective surface and antenna which is also repetitive. We analyzed the characteristics of orbital periods of BDS satellites which are consistent with multipath repeat periods of corresponding satellites. The results show that the orbital periods and multipath periods for BDS geostationary earth orbit (GEO) and inclined geosynchronous orbit (IGSO) satellites are about one day but the periods of MEO satellites are about seven days. The Kalman filter (KF) and Rauch-Tung-Striebel Smoother (RTSS) was introduced to extract the multipath models from single difference (SD) residuals with traditional sidereal filter (SF). Wavelet filter and Empirical mode decomposition (EMD) were also used to mitigate multipath effects. The experimental results show that the three filters methods all have obvious effect on improvement of baseline accuracy and the performance of KT-RTSS method is slightly better than that of wavelet filter and EMD filter. The baseline vector accuracy on east, north and up (E, N, U) components with KF-RTSS method were improved by 62.8%, 63.6%, 62.5% on day of year 280 and 57.3%, 53.4%, 55.9% on day of year 281, respectively.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 69
    Publication Date: 2018-01-13
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 203: An Over 90 dB Intra-Scene Single-Exposure Dynamic Range CMOS Image Sensor Using a 3.0 μm Triple-Gain Pixel Fabricated in a Standard BSI Process Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010203 Authors: Isao Takayanagi Norio Yoshimura Kazuya Mori Shinichiro Matsuo Shunsuke Tanaka Hirofumi Abe Naoto Yasuda Kenichiro Ishikawa Shunsuke Okura Shinji Ohsawa Toshinori Otaka To respond to the high demand for high dynamic range imaging suitable for moving objects with few artifacts, we have developed a single-exposure dynamic range image sensor by introducing a triple-gain pixel and a low noise dual-gain readout circuit. The developed 3 μm pixel is capable of having three conversion gains. Introducing a new split-pinned photodiode structure, linear full well reaches 40 ke−. Readout noise under the highest pixel gain condition is 1 e− with a low noise readout circuit. Merging two signals, one with high pixel gain and high analog gain, and the other with low pixel gain and low analog gain, a single exposure dynamic rage (SEHDR) signal is obtained. Using this technology, a 1/2.7”, 2M-pixel CMOS image sensor has been developed and characterized. The image sensor also employs an on-chip linearization function, yielding a 16-bit linear signal at 60 fps, and an intra-scene dynamic range of higher than 90 dB was successfully demonstrated. This SEHDR approach inherently mitigates the artifacts from moving objects or time-varying light sources that can appear in the multiple exposure high dynamic range (MEHDR) approach.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 70
    Publication Date: 2018-01-13
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 204: Performance Analysis of Millimeter-Wave Multi-hop Machine-to-Machine Networks Based on Hop Distance Statistics Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010204 Authors: Haejoon Jung In-Ho Lee As an intrinsic part of the Internet of Things (IoT) ecosystem, machine-to-machine (M2M) communications are expected to provide ubiquitous connectivity between machines. Millimeter-wave (mmWave) communication is another promising technology for the future communication systems to alleviate the pressure of scarce spectrum resources. For this reason, in this paper, we consider multi-hop M2M communications, where a machine-type communication (MTC) device with the limited transmit power relays to help other devices using mmWave. To be specific, we focus on hop distance statistics and their impacts on system performances in multi-hop wireless networks (MWNs) with directional antenna arrays in mmWave for M2M communications. Different from microwave systems, in mmWave communications, wireless channel suffers from blockage by obstacles that heavily attenuate line-of-sight signals, which may result in limited per-hop progress in MWNs. We consider two routing strategies aiming at different types of applications and derive the probability distributions of their hop distances. Moreover, we provide their baseline statistics assuming the blockage-free scenario to quantify the impact of blockages. Based on the hop distance analysis, we propose a method to estimate the end-to-end performances (e.g., outage probability, hop count, and transmit energy) of the mmWave MWNs, which provides important insights into mmWave MWN design without time-consuming and repetitive end-to-end simulation.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 71
    Publication Date: 2018-01-13
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 210: Multiple-Octave-Spanning Vibration Sensing Based on Simultaneous Vector Demodulation of 499 Fizeau Interference Signals from Identical Ultra-Weak Fiber Bragg Gratings Over 2.5 km Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010210 Authors: Yi Li Li Qian Ciming Zhou Dian Fan Qiannan Xu Yandong Pang Xi Chen Jianguan Tang Multi-point vibration sensing at the low frequency range of 0.5–100 Hz is of vital importance for applications such as seismic monitoring and underwater acoustic imaging. Location-resolved multi-point sensing using a single fiber and a single demodulation system can greatly reduce system deployment and maintenance costs. We propose and demonstrate the demodulation of a fiber-optic system consisting of 500 identical ultra-weak Fiber Bragg gratings (uwFBGs), capable of measuring the amplitude, frequency and phase of acoustic signals from 499 sensing fibers covering a total range of 2.5 km. For demonstration purposes, we arbitrarily chose six consecutive sensors and studied their performance in detail. Using a passive demodulation method, we interrogated the six sensors simultaneously, and achieved a high signal-to-noise ratio of 22.1 dB, excellent linearity, phase sensitivity of around 0.024 rad/Pa, and a dynamic range of about 38 dB. We demonstrated a frequency response flatness of <1.2 dB in the range of 0.5–100 Hz. Compared to the prior state-of-the-art demonstration using a similar method, we have increased the sensing range from 1 km to 2.5 km, and increased the frequency range from 0.4 octaves to 7.6 octaves, in addition to achieving sensing in the very challenging low-frequency range of 0.5–100 Hz.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 72
    Publication Date: 2018-01-13
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 200: Improving Odometric Accuracy for an Autonomous Electric Cart Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010200 Authors: Jonay Toledo Jose Piñeiro Rafael Arnay Daniel Acosta Leopoldo Acosta In this paper, a study of the odometric system for the autonomous cart Verdino, which is an electric vehicle based on a golf cart, is presented. A mathematical model of the odometric system is derived from cart movement equations, and is used to compute the vehicle position and orientation. The inputs of the system are the odometry encoders, and the model uses the wheels diameter and distance between wheels as parameters. With this model, a least square minimization is made in order to get the nominal best parameters. This model is updated, including a real time wheel diameter measurement improving the accuracy of the results. A neural network model is used in order to learn the odometric model from data. Tests are made using this neural network in several configurations and the results are compared to the mathematical model, showing that the neural network can outperform the first proposed model.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 73
    Publication Date: 2018-01-13
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 199: Preparation of Cu2O-Reduced Graphene Nanocomposite Modified Electrodes towards Ultrasensitive Dopamine Detection Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010199 Authors: Quanguo He Jun Liu Xiaopeng Liu Guangli Li Peihong Deng Jing Liang Cu2O-reduced graphene oxide nanocomposite (Cu2O-RGO) was used to modify glassy carbon electrodes (GCE), and applied for the determination of dopamine (DA). The microstructure of Cu2O-RGO nanocomposite material was characterized by scanning electron microscope. Then the electrochemical reduction condition for preparing Cu2O-RGO/GCE and experimental conditions for determining DA were further optimized. The electrochemical behaviors of DA on the bare electrode, RGO- and Cu2O-RGO-modified electrodes were also investigated using cyclic voltammetry in phosphate-buffered saline solution (PBS, pH 3.5). The results show that the oxidation peaks of ascorbic acid (AA), dopamine (DA), and uric acid (UA) could be well separated and the peak-to-peak separations are 204 mV (AA-DA) and 144 mV (DA-UA), respectively. Moreover, the linear response ranges for the determination of 1 × 10−8 mol/L~1 × 10−6 mol/L and 1 × 10−6 mol/L~8 × 10−5 mol/L with the detection limit 6.0 × 10−9 mol/L (S/N = 3). The proposed Cu2O-RGO/GCE was further applied to the determination of DA in dopamine hydrochloride injections with satisfactory results.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
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  • 74
    Publication Date: 2018-01-13
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 205: Plils: A Practical Indoor Localization System through Less Expensive Wireless Chips via Subregion Clustering Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010205 Authors: Xiaolong Li Yifu Yang Jun Cai Yun Deng Junfeng Yang Xinmin Zhou Lina Tan Reducing costs is a pragmatic method for promoting the widespread usage of indoor localization technology. Conventional indoor localization systems (ILSs) exploit relatively expensive wireless chips to measure received signal strength for positioning. Our work is based on a cheap and widely-used commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) wireless chip, i.e., the Nordic Semiconductor nRF24LE1, which has only several output power levels, and proposes a new power level based-ILS, called Plils. The localization procedure incorporates two phases: an offline training phase and an online localization phase. In the offline training phase, a self-organizing map (SOM) is utilized for dividing a target area into k subregions, wherein their grids in the same subregion have similar fingerprints. In the online localization phase, the support vector machine (SVM) and back propagation (BP) neural network methods are adopted to identify which subregion a tagged object is located in, and calculate its exact location, respectively. The reasonable value for k has been discussed as well. Our experiments show that Plils achieves 75 cm accuracy on average, and is robust to indoor obstacles.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
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  • 75
    Publication Date: 2018-01-13
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 201: Optical Fiber Demodulation System with High Performance for Assessing Fretting Damage of Steam Generator Tubes Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18010201 Authors: Peijian Huang Ning Wang Junying Li Yong Zhu Jie Zhang Zhide Xi In order to access the fretting damage of the steam generator tube (SGT), a fast fiber Fabry-Perot (F-P) non-scanning correlation demodulation system based on a super luminescent light emitting diode (SLED) was performed. By demodulating the light signal coming out from the F-P force sensor, the radial collision force between the SGT and the tube support plate (TSP) was interrogated. For higher demodulation accuracy, the effects of the center wavelength, bandwidth, and spectrum noise of SLED were discussed in detail. Specially, a piezoelectric ceramic transducer (PZT) modulation method was developed to get rid of the interference of mode coupling induced by different types of fiber optics in the demodulation system. The reflectivity of optical wedge and F-P sensor was optimized. Finally, the demodulation system worked well in a 1:1 steam generator test loop and successfully demodulated a force signal of 32 N with a collision time of 2 ms.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
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  • 76
    Publication Date: 2018-01-13
    Description: Symmetry, Vol. 10, Pages 27: The Posterior Sustained Negativity Revisited—An SPN Reanalysis of Jacobsen and Höfel (2003) Symmetry doi: 10.3390/sym10010027 Authors: Thomas Jacobsen Stina Klein Andreas Löw Symmetry is an important cue for the aesthetic judgment of beauty. Using a binary forced-choice format in a cued mixed design, Jacobsen and Höfel (2003) compared aesthetic judgments of beauty and symmetry judgments of novel graphic patterns. A late posterior sustained negativity elicited by symmetric patterns was observed in the symmetry judgment condition, but not in the beauty judgement condition. Therefore, this negativity appeared to be mainly driven by the task.In a series of studies, Bertamini, Makin, and colleagues observed a comparable sustained posterior negativity (SPN) to symmetric stimuli, mainly taken to reflect obligatory symmetry processing independent of task requirements. We reanalyzed the data by Jacobsen and Höfel (2003) using similar parameters for data analysis as Bertamini, Makin, and colleagues to examine these apparent differences. The reanalysis confirmed both a task-driven effect on the posterior sustained negativity/SPN to symmetric patterns in the symmetry judgment condition and a strong symmetry-driven SPN to symmetric patterns. Differences between the references used for analyses of the electroencephalogram (EEG) had an effect. Based on the reanalysis, the Jacobsen and Höfel (2003) data also fit well with Bertamini’s, Makin’s, and colleagues’ account of obligatory symmetry processing.
    Electronic ISSN: 2073-8994
    Topics: Mathematics , Physics
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  • 77