Excellence in Research and Innovation for Humanity

International Science Index

Commenced in January 1999 Frequency: Monthly Edition: International Paper Count: 61

Examination of Internally and Externally Coated Cr3C2 Exhaust Pipe of a Diesel Engine via Plasma Spray Method

In this experimental study; internal and external parts of an exhaust pipe were coated with a chromium carbide (Cr3C2) material having a thickness of 100 micron by using the plasma spray method. A diesel engine was used as the test engine. Thus, the results of continuing chemical reaction in coated and uncoated exhaust pipes were investigated. Internally and externally coated exhaust pipe was compared with the standard exhaust system. External heat transfer occurring as a result of coating the internal and external parts of the exhaust pipe was reduced and its effects on harmful exhaust emissions were investigated. As a result of the experiments; a remarkable improvement was determined in emission values as a result of delay in cooling of exhaust gases due to the coating.

Neutrophil-to-Lymphocyte Ratio: A Predictor of Cardiometabolic Complications in Morbid Obese Girls
Obesity is a low-grade inflammatory state. Childhood obesity is a multisystem disease, which is associated with a number of complications as well as potentially negative consequences. Gender is an important universal risk factor for many diseases. Hematological indices differ significantly by gender. This should be considered during the evaluation of obese children. The aim of this study is to detect hematologic indices that differ by gender in morbid obese (MO) children. A total of 134 MO children took part in this study. The parents filled an informed consent form and the approval from the Ethics Committee of Namik Kemal University was obtained. Subjects were divided into two groups based on their genders (64 females aged 10.2±3.1 years and 70 males aged 9.8±2.2 years; p ≥ 0.05). Waist-to-hip as well as head-to-neck ratios and body mass index (BMI) values were calculated. The children, whose WHO BMI-for age and sex percentile values were > 99 percentile, were defined as MO. Hematological parameters [haemoglobin, hematocrit, erythrocyte count, mean corpuscular volume, mean corpuscular haemoglobin, mean corpuscular haemoglobin concentration, red blood cell distribution width, leukocyte count, neutrophil %, lymphocyte %, monocyte %, eosinophil %, basophil %, platelet count, platelet distribution width, mean platelet volume] were determined by the automatic hematology analyzer. SPSS was used for statistical analyses. P ≤ 0.05 was the degree for statistical significance. The groups included children having mean±SD value of BMI as 26.9±3.4 kg/m2 for males and 27.7±4.4 kg/m2 for females (p ≥ 0.05). There was no significant difference between ages of females and males (p ≥ 0.05). Males had significantly increased waist-to-hip ratios (0.95±0.08 vs 0.91±0.08; p=0.005) and mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration values (33.6±0.92 vs 33.1±0.83; p=0.001) compared to those of females. Significantly elevated neutrophil (4.69±1.59 vs 4.02±1.42; p=0.011) and neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratios (1.70±0.71 vs 1.39±0.48; p=0.004) were detected in females. There was no statistically significant difference between groups in terms of C-reactive protein values (p ≥ 0.05). Adipose tissue plays important roles during the development of obesity and associated diseases such as metabolic syndrom and cardiovascular diseases (CVDs). These diseases may cause changes in complete blood cell count parameters. These alterations are even more important during childhood. Significant gender effects on the changes of neutrophils, one of the white blood cell subsets, were observed. The findings of the study demonstrate the importance of considering gender in clinical studies. The males and females may have distinct leukocyte-trafficking profiles in inflammation. Female children had more circulating neutrophils, which may be the indicator of an increased risk of CVDs, than male children within this age range during the late stage of obesity. In recent years, females represent about half of deaths from CVDs; therefore, our findings may be the indicator of the increasing tendency of this risk in females starting from childhood.
Topochemical Synthesis of Epitaxial Silicon Carbide on Silicon

A method is developed for the solid-phase synthesis of epitaxial layers when the substrate itself is involved into a topochemical reaction and the reaction product grows in the interior of substrate layer. It opens up new possibilities for the relaxation of the elastic energy due to the attraction of point defects formed during the topochemical reaction in anisotropic media. The presented method of silicon carbide (SiC) formation employs a topochemical reaction between the single-crystalline silicon (Si) substrate and gaseous carbon monoxide (CO). The corresponding theory of interaction of point dilatation centers in anisotropic crystals is developed. It is eliminated that the most advantageous location of the point defects is the direction (111) in crystals with cubic symmetry. The single-crystal SiC films with the thickness up to 200 nm have been grown on Si (111) substrates owing to the topochemical reaction with CO. Grown high-quality single-crystal SiC films do not contain misfit dislocations despite the huge lattice mismatch value of ~20%. Also the possibility of growing of thick wide-gap semiconductor films on these templates SiC/Si(111) and, accordingly, its integration into Si electronics, is demonstrated. Finally, the ab initio theory of SiC formation due to the topochemical reaction has been developed.

Application of Recycled Tungsten Carbide Powder for Fabrication of Iron Based Powder Metallurgy Alloy
Tungsten carbide is widely used as a tool material in metal manufacturing process. Since tungsten is typical rare metal, establishment of recycle process of tungsten carbide tools and restore into cemented carbide material bring great impact to metal manufacturing industry. Recently, recycle process of tungsten carbide has been developed and established gradually. However, the demands for quality of cemented carbide tool are quite severe because hardness, toughness, anti-wear ability, heat resistance, fatigue strength and so on should be guaranteed for precision machining and tool life. Currently, it is hard to restore the recycled tungsten carbide powder entirely as raw material for new processed cemented carbide tool. In this study, to suggest positive use of recycled tungsten carbide powder, we have tried to fabricate a carbon based sintered steel which shows reinforced mechanical properties with recycled tungsten carbide powder. We have made set of newly designed sintered steels. Compression test of sintered specimen in density ratio of 0.85 (which means 15% porosity inside) has been conducted. As results, at least 1.7 times higher in nominal strength in the amount of 7.0 wt.% was shown in recycled WC powder. The strength reached to over 600 MPa for the Fe-WC-Co-Cu sintered alloy. Wear test has been conducted by using ball-on-disk type friction tester using 5 mm diameter ball with normal force of 2 N in the dry conditions. Wear amount after 1,000 m running distance shows that about 1.5 times longer life was shown in designed sintered alloy. Since results of tensile test showed that same tendency in previous testing, it is concluded that designed sintered alloy can be used for several mechanical parts with special strength and anti-wear ability in relatively low cost due to recycled tungsten carbide powder.
A Descriptive Study on Psychiatric Morbidity among Nurses Working in Selected Hospitals of Udupi and Mangalore Districts Karnataka, India
Nursing is recognized as a stressful occupation and has indicated a probable high prevalence of distress. It is a helping profession requiring a high degree of commitment and involvement. If stress is intense, continuous and repeated, it becomes a negative phenomenon or "distress," which can lead to physical illness and psychological disorders. The frequency of common psychosomatic symptoms including sleeping problems, tension headache, chronic fatigue, palpitation etc. may be an indicator of nurses’ work-related stress level. Objectives of the study were to determine psychiatric morbidity among nurses and to find its association with selected variables. The study population consisted of 1040 registered nurses working in selected medical college hospitals and government hospitals of Udupi and Mangalore districts. Descriptive survey design was used to conduct the study. Subjects were selected by using purposive sampling. Data were gathered by administering background proforma and General Health questionnaire. Severe distress was experienced by 0.9% of nurses and 5.6% had some evidence of distress. Subjects who did not have any distress were 93.5%. No significant association between psychiatric morbidity in nurses and demographic variables was observed. With regard to work variables significant association is observed between psychiatric morbidity and total years of experience (z=10.67, p=0.03) and experience in current area of work (z=9.43, p=0.02).
Analysis of the Black Sea Gas Hydrates
Gas hydrate deposits which are found in deep ocean sediments and in permafrost regions are supposed to be a fossil fuel reserve for the future. The Black Sea is also considered rich in terms of gas hydrates. It abundantly contains gas hydrates as methane (CH4~80 to 99.9%) source. In this study, by using the literature, seismic and other data of the Black Sea such as salinity, porosity of the sediments, common gas type, temperature distribution and pressure gradient, the optimum gas production method for the Black Sea gas hydrates was selected as mainly depressurization method. Numerical simulations were run to analyze gas production from gas hydrate deposited in turbidites in the Black Sea by depressurization.
Influence of Raw Material Composition on Microstructure and Mechanical Properties of Nodular Cast Iron

The aim of this study is to evaluate the influence of raw material composition on the microstructure, mechanical and fatigue properties and micromechanisms of failure of nodular cast iron. In order to evaluate the influence of charge composition, the structural analysis, mechanical and fatigue tests and microfractographic analysis were carried out on specimens of ten melts with different charge compositions. The basic charge of individual melts was formed by different ratio of pig iron and steel scrap and by different additive for regulation of chemical composition (silicon carbide or ferrosilicon). The results show differences in mechanical and fatigue properties, which are connected with the microstructure. SiC additive positively influences microstructure. Consequently, mechanical and fatigue properties of nodular cast iron are improved, especially in the melts with higher ratio of steel scrap in the charge.

Gender Differences in Morbid Obese Children: Clinical Significance of Two Diagnostic Obesity Notation Model Assessment Indices

Childhood obesity is an ever increasing global health problem, affecting both developed and developing countries. Accurate evaluation of obesity in children requires difficult and detailed investigation. In our study, obesity in children was evaluated using new body fat ratios and indices. Assessment of anthropometric measurements, as well as some ratios, is important because of the evaluation of gender differences particularly during the late periods of obesity. A total of 239 children; 168 morbid obese (MO) (81 girls and 87 boys) and 71 normal weight (NW) (40 girls and 31 boys) children, participated in the study. Informed consent forms signed by the parents were obtained. Ethics Committee approved the study protocol. Mean ages (years)±SD calculated for MO group were 10.8±2.9 years in girls and 10.1±2.4 years in boys. The corresponding values for NW group were 9.0±2.0 years in girls and 9.2±2.1 years in boys. Mean body mass index (BMI)±SD values for MO group were 29.1±5.4 kg/m2 and 27.2±3.9 kg/m2 in girls and boys, respectively. These values for NW group were calculated as 15.5±1.0 kg/m2 in girls and 15.9±1.1 kg/m2 in boys. Groups were constituted based upon BMI percentiles for age-and-sex values recommended by WHO. Children with percentiles >99 were grouped as MO and children with percentiles between 85 and 15 were considered NW. The anthropometric measurements were recorded and evaluated along with the new ratios such as trunk-to-appendicular fat ratio, as well as indices such as Index-I and Index-II. The body fat percent values were obtained by bio-electrical impedance analysis. Data were entered into a database for analysis using SPSS/PASW 18 Statistics for Windows statistical software. Increased waist-to-hip circumference (C) ratios, decreased head-to-neck C, height ‘to’ ‘two’-‘to’-waist C and height ‘to’ ‘two’-‘to’-hip C ratios were observed in parallel with the development of obesity (p≤0.001). Reference value for height ‘to’ ‘two’-‘to’-hip ratio was detected as approximately 1.0. Index-II, based upon total body fat mass, showed much more significant differences between the groups than Index-I based upon weight. There was not any difference between trunk-to-appendicular fat ratios of NW girls and NW boys (p≥0.05). However, significantly increased values for MO girls in comparison with MO boys were observed (p≤0.05). This parameter showed no difference between NW and MO states in boys (p≥0.05). However, statistically significant increase was noted in MO girls compared to their NW states (p≤0.001). Trunk-to-appendicular fat ratio was the only fat-based parameter, which showed gender difference between NW and MO groups. This study has revealed that body ratios and formula based upon body fat tissue are more valuable parameters than those based on weight and height values for the evaluation of morbid obesity in children.

Inductions of CaC2 on Sperm Morphology and Viability of the Albino Mice (Mus musculus)

This work investigated possible inductions of CaC2, often misused by fruit vendors to stimulate artificial ripening, on mammalian sperm morphology and viability. Thirty isogenic strains of male albino mice, Mus musculus (age≈ 8weeks; weight= 32.52.0g) were acclimatized (ambient temperature 28.0±1.0°C) for 2 weeks and fed standard growers mash and water ad libutum. They were later exposed to graded toxicant concentrations (w/w) of 2.5000, 1.2500, 0.6250, and 0.3125% in 4 cages. A control cage was also established. After 5 weeks, 3 animals from each cage were sacrificed by cervical dislocation and the cauda epididymis excised. Sperm morphology and viability were determined by microscopic procedures. The ANOVA, means plots, Student’s t-test and variation plots were used to analyze data. The common abnormalities observed included Double Head, Pin Head, Knobbed Head, No Tail and With Hook. The higher toxicant concentrations induced significantly lower body weights [F(829.899) ˃ Fcrit(4.19)] and more abnormalities [F(26.52) ˃ Fcrit(4.00)] at P˂0.05. Sperm cells in the control setup were significantly more viable than those in the 0.625% (t=0.005) and 2.500% toxicant doses (t=0.018) at the 95% confidence limit. CaC2 appeared to induced morphological abnormalities and reduced viability in sperm cells of M. musculus.

Dengue Death Review: A Tool to Adjudge the Cause of Dengue Mortality and Use of the Tool for Prevention of Dengue Deaths
Dengue is a mosquito-borne viral disease endemic in many countries in the tropics and sub-tropics. The state of Punjab in India shows cyclical and seasonal variation in dengue cases. The Case Fatality Rate of Dengue has ranged from 0.6 to 1.0 in the past years. The department has initiated review of the cases that have died due to dengue in order to know the exact cause of the death in a case of dengue. The study has been undertaken to know the other associated co-morbidities and factors causing death in a case of dengue. The study used the predesigned proforma on which the records (medical and Lab) were recorded and reviewed by the expert committee of the doctors. This study has revealed that cases of dengue having co-morbidities have longer stay in hospital. Fluid overload and co-morbidities have been found as major factors leading to death, however, in a confirmed case of dengue hepatorenal shutdown was found to be major cause of mortality. The data obtained will help in sensitizing the treating physicians in order to decrease the mortality due to dengue in future.
Microwave Sintering and Its Application on Cemented Carbides
Cemented carbides, owing to their excellent mechanical properties, have been of immense interest in the field of hard materials for the past few decades. A number of processing techniques have been developed to obtain high quality carbide tools, with a wide range of grain size depending on the application and requirements. Microwave sintering is one of the heating processes, which has been used to prepare a wide range of materials including ceramics. A deep understanding of microwave sintering and its contribution towards control of grain growth and on deformation of the resulting carbide materials requires further studies and attention. In addition, the effect of binder materials and their behavior during microwave sintering is another area that requires clear understanding. This review aims to focus on microwave sintering, providing information of how the process works and what type of materials it is best suited for. In addition, a closer look at some microwave sintered Tungsten Carbide-Cobalt samples will be taken and discussed, highlighting some of the key issues and challenges faced in this research area.
Evaluation Using a Bidirectional Microphone as a Pressure Pulse Wave Meter
This paper describes a novel sensor device, a pressure pulse wave meter, which uses a bidirectional condenser microphone. The microphone work as a microphone as well as a sensor with high gain over a wide frequency range; they are also highly reliable and economic. Currently aging is becoming a serious social issue in Japan causing increased medical expenses in the country. Hence, it is important for elderly citizens to check health condition at home, and to care the health conditions through daily monitoring. Given this circumstances, we developed a novel pressure pulse wave meter based on a bidirectional condenser microphone: this device is used as a measuring instrument of health conditions.
Aging Effect on Mechanical Behavior of Duplex Satinless Steel

Effect of alloying on the microstructure and mechanical properties of heat-resisting duplex stainless steel (DSS) for Mg production was investigated in this study. 25Cr-8Ni based DSS’s were cast into rectangular ingots of which the dimension was 350×350×100 mm3 . Nitrogen and Yttrium were added in the range within 0.3 in weight percent. Phase equilibrium was calculated using the FactSage®, thermodynamic software. Hot exposure, high temperature tensile and compression tests were conducted on the ingots at 1230oC, which is operation temperature employed for Mg production by Silico-thermic reduction. The steel with N and Y showed much higher strength than 310S alloy in both tensile and compression tests. By thermal exposition at 1230oC for 200 hrs, hardness of DSS containing N and Y was found to increase. Hot workability of the heat-resisting DSS was evaluated by employing hot rolling at 1230 oC. Hot shortness was observed in the ingot with N and found to disappear after addition of Y.

A Novel Eccentric Lapping Method with Two Rotatable Lapping Plates for Finishing Cemented Carbide Balls

Cemented carbide balls are usually implemented in industry under the environment of high speed, high temperature, corrosiveness and strong collisions. However, its application is limited due to high fabrication cost, processing efficiency and quality. A novel eccentric lapping method with two rotatable lapping plates was proposed in this paper. A mathematical model was constructed to analyze the influence of each design parameter on this lapping method. To validate this new lapping method, an orthogonal experiment was conducted with cemented carbide balls (YG6). The simulation model was verified and the optimal lapping parameters were derived. The results show that the surface roundness of the balls reaches to 0.65um from 2um in 1 hour using this lapping method. So, using this novel lapping method, it can effectively improve the machining precision and efficiency of cemented carbide balls.

Preparation and Cutting Performance of Boron-Doped Diamond Coating on Cemented Carbide Cutting Tools with High Cobalt Content

Chemical vapor deposition (CVD) diamond coated cutting tool has excellent cutting performance, it is the most ideal tool for the processing of nonferrous metals and alloys, composites, nonmetallic materials and other difficult-to-machine materials efficiently and accurately. Depositing CVD diamond coating on the cemented carbide with high cobalt content can improve its toughness and strength, therefore, it is very important to research on the preparation technology and cutting properties of CVD diamond coated cemented carbide cutting tool with high cobalt content. The preparation technology of boron-doped diamond (BDD) coating has been studied and the coated drills were prepared. BDD coating were deposited on the drills by using the optimized parameters and the SEM results show that there are no cracks or collapses in the coating. Cutting tests with the prepared drills against the silumin and aluminum base printed circuit board (PCB) have been studied. The results show that the wear amount of the coated drill is small and the machined surface has a better precision. The coating does not come off during the test, which shows good adhesion and cutting performance of the drill.

Prediction of Seismic Damage Using Scalar Intensity Measures Based On Integration of Spectral Values

A key issue in seismic risk analysis within the context of Performance-Based Earthquake Engineering is the evaluation of the expected seismic damage of structures under a specific earthquake ground motion. The assessment of the seismic performance strongly depends on the choice of the seismic Intensity Measure (IM), which quantifies the characteristics of a ground motion that are important to the nonlinear structural response. Several conventional IMs of ground motion have been used to estimate their damage potential to structures. Yet, none of them has been proved to be able to predict adequately the seismic damage. Therefore, alternative, scalar intensity measures, which take into account not only ground motion characteristics but also structural information have been proposed. Some of these IMs are based on integration of spectral values over a range of periods, in an attempt to account for the information that the shape of the acceleration, velocity or displacement spectrum provides. The adequacy of a number of these IMs in predicting the structural damage of 3D R/C buildings is investigated in the present paper. The investigated IMs, some of which are structure specific and some are non structure-specific, are defined via integration of spectral values. To achieve this purpose three symmetric in plan R/C buildings are studied. The buildings are subjected to 59 bidirectional earthquake ground motions. The two horizontal accelerograms of each ground motion are applied along the structural axes. The response is determined by nonlinear time history analysis. The structural damage is expressed in terms of the maximum interstory drift as well as the overall structural damage index. The values of the aforementioned seismic damage measures are correlated with seven scalar ground motion IMs. The comparative assessment of the results revealed that the structure-specific IMs present higher correlation with the seismic damage of the three buildings. However, the adequacy of the IMs for estimation of the structural damage depends on the response parameter adopted. Furthermore, it was confirmed that the widely used spectral acceleration at the fundamental period of the structure is a good indicator of the expected earthquake damage level.

Tool Wear of Metal Matrix Composite 10wt% AlN Reinforcement Using TiB2 Cutting Tool

Metal matrix composites (MMCs) attract considerable attention as a result from its ability in providing a high strength, high modulus, high toughness, high impact properties, improving wear resistance and providing good corrosion resistance compared to unreinforced alloy. Aluminium Silicon (Al/Si) alloy MMC has been widely used in various industrial sectors such as in transportation, domestic equipment, aerospace, military, construction, etc. Aluminium silicon alloy is an MMC that had been reinforced with aluminium nitrate (AlN) particle and become a new generation material use in automotive and aerospace sector. The AlN is one of the advance material that have a bright prospect in future since it has features such as lightweight, high strength, high hardness and stiffness quality. However, the high degree of ceramic particle reinforcement and the irregular nature of the particles along the matrix material that contribute to its low density is the main problem which leads to difficulties in machining process. This paper examined the tool wear when milling AlSi/AlN Metal Matrix Composite using a TiB2 (Titanium diboride) coated carbide cutting tool. The volume of the AlN reinforced particle was 10% and milling process was carried out under dry cutting condition. The TiB2 coated carbide insert parameters used were at the cutting speed of (230, 300 and 370m/min, feed rate of 0.8, Depth of Cut (DoC) at 0.4m). The Sometech SV-35 video microscope system used to quantify of the tool wear. The result shown that tool life span increasing with the cutting speeds at (370m/min, feed rate of 0.8mm/tooth and DoC at 0.4mm) which constituted an optimum condition for longer tool life lasted until 123.2 mins. Meanwhile, at medium cutting speed which at 300m/m, feed rate of 0.8mm/tooth and depth of cut at 0.4mm we found that tool life span lasted until 119.86 mins while at low cutting speed it lasted in 119.66 mins. High cutting speed will give the best parameter in cutting AlSi/AlN MMCs material. The result will help manufacturers in machining process of AlSi/AlN MMCs materials.

The Effect of Surface Modifiers on the Mechanical and Morphological Properties of Waste Silicon Carbide Filled High-Density Polyethylene

Waste silicon carbide (waste SiC) filled high-density polyethylene (HDPE) with and without surface modifiers were studied. Two types of surface modifiers namely; high-density polyethylene-grafted-maleic anhydride (HDPE-g-MA) and 3-aminopropyltriethoxysilane have been used in this study. The composites were produced using a two roll mill, extruder and shaped in a hydraulic compression molding machine. The mechanical properties of polymer composites such as flexural strength and modulus, impact strength, tensile strength, stiffness and hardness were investigated over a range of compositions. It was found that, flexural strength and modulus, tensile modulus and hardness increased, whereas impact strength and tensile strength decreased with the increasing in filler contents, compared to the neat HDPE. At similar filler content, the effect of both surface modifiers increased flexural modulus, impact strength, tensile strength and stiffness but reduced the flexural strength. Morphological investigation using SEM revealed that the improvement in mechanical properties was due to enhancement of the interfacial adhesion between waste SiC and HDPE.

Carbide Structure and Fracture Toughness of High Speed Tool Steels

In the present study, M2 high speed steels were fabricated by using electro-slag rapid remelting process. Carbide structure was analysed and the fracture toughness and hardness were also measured after austenitization treatment at 1190 and 1210oC followed by tempering treatment at 535oC for billets with various diameters from 16 to 60 mm. Electro-slag rapid remelting (ESRR) process is an advanced ESR process combined by continuous casting and successfully employed in this study to fabricate a sound M2 high speed ingot. Three other kinds of commercial M2 high speed steels, produced by traditional method, were also analysed for comparison. Distribution and structure of eutectic carbides of the ESRR billet were found to be comparable to those of commercial alloy and so was the fracture toughness.

Effect of Austenitization Temperature on Wear Behavior of Carbidic Austempered Ductile Iron (CADI)

Chromium bearing Austempered Ductile Iron (ADI) has been recently in the news for its improved wear performance over the ADI. The work presented below was taken up to study the effect of different austenitisation temperatures on the microstructure and wear performance of the Carbidic Austempered Ductile Iron (CADI). In this investigation Cr bearing ductile iron was subjected to austempering treatment to obtain an ausferritic microstructure. Two different austenitisation temperatures were selected whereas, the austempering temperature and time was kept unchanged. Microstructure and wear performance of this alloy, austenitized at two different temperatures was studied.

Rheological Behavior of Fresh Activated Sludge

Despite of few research works on municipal sludge, still there is a lack of actual data. Thus, this work was focused on the conditioning and rheology of fresh activated sludge. The effect of cationic polyelectrolyte has been investigated at different concentrations and pH values in a comparative fashion. Yield stress is presented in all results indicating the minimum stress that necessary to reach flow conditions. Connections between particle-particle is the reason for this yield stress, also, the addition of polyelectrolyte causes strong bonds between particles and water resulting in the aggregation of particles which required higher shear stress in order to flow. The results from the experiments indicate that the cationic polyelectrolytes have significant effluence on the sludge characteristic and water quality such as turbidity, SVI, zone settling rate and shear stress.

Control of an Asymmetrical Design of a Pneumatically Actuated Ambidextrous Robot Hand

The Ambidextrous Robot Hand is a robotic device with the purpose to mimic either the gestures of a right or a left hand. The symmetrical behavior of its fingers allows them to bend in one way or another keeping a compliant and anthropomorphic shape. However, in addition to gestures they can reproduce on both sides, an asymmetrical mechanical design with a three tendons routing has been engineered to reduce the number of actuators. As a consequence, control algorithms must be adapted to drive efficiently the ambidextrous fingers from one position to another and to include grasping features. These movements are controlled by pneumatic muscles, which are nonlinear actuators. As their elasticity constantly varies when they are under actuation, the length of pneumatic muscles and the force they provide may differ for a same value of pressurized air. The control algorithms introduced in this paper take both the fingers asymmetrical design and the pneumatic muscles nonlinearity into account to permit an accurate control of the Ambidextrous Robot Hand. The finger motion is achieved by combining a classic PID controller with a phase plane switching control that turns the gain constants into dynamic values. The grasping ability is made possible because of a sliding mode control that makes the fingers adapt to the shape of an object before strengthening their positions.

Alternative Splicingof an Arabidopsis Gene, At2g24600, Encoding Ankyrin-Repeat Protein

In Arabidopsis, several genes encoding proteins with ankyrin repeats and transmembrane domains (AtANKTM) have been identified as mediators of biotic and abiotic stress responses. It has been known that the expression of an AtANKTM gene, At2g24600, is induced in response to abiotic stress and that there are four splicing variants derived from this locus. In this study, by RT-PCR and sequencing analysis, an unknown splicing variant of the At2g24600 transcript was identified. Based on differences in the predicted amino acid sequences, the five splicing variants are divided into three groups. The three predicted proteins are highly homologous, yet have different numbers of ankyrinrepeats and transmembrane domains. It is generally considered that ankyrin repeats mediate protein-protein interaction and that the number oftransmembrane domains affects membrane topology of proteins. The protein variants derived from the At2g24600 locus may have different molecular functions each other.

A Novel Gene Encoding Ankyrin-Repeat Protein, SHG1, is Indispensable for Seed Germination under Moderate Salt Stress

Salt stress adversely affects plant growth at various stages of development including seed germination, seedling establishment, vegetative growth and finally reproduction. Because of their immobile nature, plants have evolved mechanisms to sense and respond to salt stress. Seed dormancy is an adaptive trait that enables seed germination to coincide with favorable environmental conditions. We identified a novel locus of Arabidopsis, designated SHG1 (salt hypersensitive germination 1), whose disruption leads to reduced germination rate under moderate salt stress conditions. SHG1 encodes a transmembrane protein with an ankyrin-repeat motif that has been implicated in diverse cellular processes such as signal transduction. The shg1-disrupted Arabidopsis mutant died at the cotyledon stage when sown on salt-containing medium, although wild-type plants could form true leaves under the same conditions. On the other hand, this mutant showed similar phenotypes to wild-type plants when sown on medium without salt and transferred to salt-containing medium at the vegetative stage. These results suggested that SHG1 played indispensable role in the seed germination and seedling establishment under moderate salt stress conditions. SHG1 may be involved in the release of seed dormancy.

Alloying Effect on Hot Workability of M42 High Speed Steel

In the present study, the effect of Si, Al, Ti, Zr, and Nb addition on the microstructure and hot workability of cast M42 tool steels, basically consisting of 1.0C, 0.2Mn, 3.8Cr, 1.5W, 8.5Co, 9.2Mo, and 1.0V in weight percent has been investigated. Tool steels containing Si of 0.25 and 0.5wt.%, Al of 0.06 and 0.12wt.%, Ti of 0.3wt.%, Zr of 0.3wt.%, and Nb of 0.3wt.% were cast into ingots of 140mm ´ 140mm ´ 330mm by vacuum induction melting. After solution treatment at 1150oC for 1.5hr followed by furnace cooling, hot rolling at 1180oC was conducted on the ingots. Addition of titanium, zirconium and niobium was found to retard the decomposition of the eutectic carbides and result in the deterioration of hot workability of the tool steels, while addition of aluminum and silicon showed relatively well decomposed carbide structure and resulted in sound hot rolled plates.

Design and Simulation Interface Circuit for Piezoresistive Accelerometers with Offset Cancellation Ability

This paper presents a new method for read out of the piezoresistive accelerometer sensors. The circuit works based on Instrumentation amplifier and it is useful for reducing offset In Wheatstone Bridge. The obtained gain is 645 with 1μv/°c Equivalent drift and 1.58mw power consumption. A Schmitt trigger and multiplexer circuit control output node. a high speed counter is designed in this work .the proposed circuit is designed and simulated In 0.18μm CMOS technology with 1.8v power supply.

Impact Behavior of Cryogenically Treated En 52 and 21-4N Valve Steels

Cryogenic treatment is the process of cooling a material to extremely low temperatures to generate enhanced mechanical and physical properties. The purpose of this study is to examine the effect of cryogenic treatment on the impact behavior of En 52 and 21-4N valve steels. The valve steels are subjected to shallow (193 K) and deep cryogenic treatment (85 K), and the impact behavior is compared with the valve steel materials subjected to conventional heat treatment. The impact test is carried out in accordance with the ASTM E 23-02a standard. The results show an improvement of 23 % in the impact energy for the En 52 deep cryo-treated samples when compared to that of the conventionally heat treated samples. It is revealed that during cryogenic treatment fine platelets of martensite are formed from the retained austenite, and these platelets promote the precipitation of fine carbides by a diffusion mechanism during tempering.

Conditioning Process of Fresh Activated Sludge

The effect of polyelectrolytes; cationic and anionic charges and coagulants have been investigated for fresh activated sludge at different concentrations and pH values in a comparative fashion. The results from the experiments indicate that the cationic polyelectrolytes have a significant effluence on the sludge characteristic, degree of flocculation and water quality such as turbidity and SVI. The results show that the cationic CPAM-80 is the most effective polyelectrolyte used corresponding to turbidity and SVI despite of the variations in feed properties of the fresh activated sludge.

The Expression of a Novel Gene Encoding an Ankyrin-Repeat Protein, DRA1, is Regulated by Drought-Responsive Alternative Splicing

Drought stress is a critical environmental factor that adversely affects crop productivity and quality. Because of their immobile nature, plants have evolved mechanisms to sense and respond to drought stress. We identified a novel locus of Arabidopsis, designated DRA1 (drought responsive ankyrin1), whose disruption leads to increased drought-stress tolerance. DRA1 encodes a transmembrane protein with an ankyrin-repeat motif that has been implicated in diverse cellular processes such as signal transduction. RT-PCR analysis revealed that there were at least two splicing variants of DRA1 transcripts in wild-type plants. In response to drought stress, the levels of DRA1 transcripts retaining second and third introns were increased, whereas these introns were removed under unstressed conditions. These results suggest that DRA1 protein may negatively regulate plant drought tolerance and that the expression of DRA1is regulated in response to drought stress by alternative splicing.

The Expression of a Novel Gene Encoding an Ankyrin-Repeat Protein, DRA1, is Regulated by Drought-Responsive Alternative Splicing

Drought stress is a critical environmental factor that adversely affects crop productivity and quality. Because of their immobile nature, plants have evolved mechanisms to sense and respond to drought stress. We identified a novel locus of Arabidopsis, designated DRA1 (drought responsive ankyrin1), whose disruption leads to increased drought-stress tolerance. DRA1 encodes a transmembrane protein with an ankyrin-repeat motif that has been implicated in diverse cellular processes such as signal transduction. RT-PCR analysis revealed that there were at least two splicing variants of DRA1 transcripts in wild-type plants. In response to drought stress, the levels of DRA1 transcripts retaining second and third introns were increased, whereas these introns were removed under unstressed conditions. These results suggest that DRA1 protein may negatively regulate plant drought tolerance and that the expression of DRA1is regulated in response to drought stress by alternative splicing.

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