Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 25

Search results for: A. Parker

25 Income Inequality and Its Effects on Household Livelihoods in Parker Paint Community, Liberia

Authors: Robertson Freeman

Abstract:

The prime objective of this research is to examine income inequality and its effects on household livelihoods in Parker Paint. Many researchers failed to address the potential threat of income inequality on diverse household livelihood indicators, including health, food, housing, transport and many others. They examine and generalize the effects of income differentials on household livelihoods by addressing one indicator of livelihood security. This research fills the loopholes of previous research by examining the effects of income inequality and how it affects the livelihoods of households, taking into consideration livelihood indicators including health, food security, and transport. The researcher employed the mixed research method to analyze the distribution of income and solicit opinions of household heads on the effects of their monthly income on their livelihoods. Age and sex structure, household composition, type of employment and educational status influence income inequality. The level of income, Lorenz curve and the Gini coefficient was mutually employed to calculate and determine the level of income inequality. One hundred eighty-two representing 96% of household heads are employed while 8, representing 4%, are unemployed. However, out of a total number of 182 employed, representing 96%, 27 people representing 14%, are employed in the formal private sector, while 110, representing 58%, are employed in the private informal sector. Monthly average income, savings, investments and unexpected circumstances affect the livelihood of households. Infrastructural development and wellbeing should be pursued by reducing expenditure earmarked in other sectors and channeling the funds towards the provision of household needs. One of the potent tools for consolidating household livelihoods is to initiate livelihood empowerment programs. Government and private sector agencies should establish more health insurance schemes, providing mosquito nets, immunization services, public transport, as well as embarking on feeding programs, especially in the remote areas of Parker paint. To climax the research findings, self-employment, entrepreneurship and the general private sector employment is a transparent double-edged sword. If employed in the private sector, there is the likelihood to increase one’s income. However, this also induces the income gap between the rich and poor since many people are exploited by affluence, thereby relegating the poor from the wealth hierarchy. Age and sex structure, as well as type of employment, should not be overlooked since they all play fundamental roles in influencing income inequality. Savings and investments seem to play a positive role in reducing income inequality. However, savings and investment in this research affect livelihoods negatively. It behooves mankind to strive and work hard to the best of ability in earning sufficient income and embracing measures to retain his financial strength. In so doing, people will be able to provide basic household needs, celebrate the reduction in unemployment and dependence and finally ensure sustainable livelihoods.

Keywords: income, inequality, livelihood, pakerpaint

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24 Evaluation of Advanced Architectures for Commercial Refrigeration Systems Using Low Global Warming Potential Refrigerants

Authors: Fabrizio Codella, Chris Parker, Samer Saab

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The Kigali Amendment is driving the adoption of low Global Warming Potential refrigerants in commercial refrigeration systems in over a hundred countries. Several refrigeration systems for the small and large retail stores at mild and hot ambient temperature climates have been compared for hydrofluorocarbons (HFC), hydrofluoroolefins (HFO), transcritical CO₂ and propane, in typical and advanced system architectures. The results of system performance, emissions and lifetime cost have been compared. The greatest benefits were found to be obtained by low global warming potential HFO advanced systems.

Keywords: commercial refrigeration, CO₂, emissions, HFO, lifetime cost, performance

Procedia PDF Downloads 26
23 Prey-Stage Preference, Functional Response, and Mutual Interference of Amblyseius swirskii Anthias-Henriot on Frankliniella occidentalis Priesner

Authors: Marjan Heidarian Dehkordi, Hossein Allahyari, Bruce Parker, Reza Talaee-Hassanlouei

Abstract:

The Western flower thrips, Frankliniella occidentalis Priesner (Thysanoptera: Thripidae), is a significant pest of many economically important crops. This study evaluated the functional responses, prey-stage preferences and mutual interference of Amblyseius swirskii Anthias-Henriot (Acari: Phytoseiidae) with F. occidentalis as the host under laboratory conditions. The predator species showed no prey stage preference for either prey 1st or 2nd instar. Logistic regression analysis suggested Type II (convex) functional response for the predator species. Consequently, the per capita searching efficiency decreased significantly from 1.2425 to -7.4987 as predator densities increased from 2 to 8. The findings from this study could help select better biological control agents for effective control of F. occidentalis and other pests in vegetable production.

Keywords: biological control, functional responses, mutual interference, prey-stage preferences

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22 The Defence of Loss of Control within the Coroners and Justice Act 2009: A Critical Discussion

Authors: Bader A. J. Alrajhi

Abstract:

The 'loss of control' defence to murder as enacted in the Coroners and Justice Act 2009 (CJA) represents a legislative effort to bring greater coherence to an aspect of UK homicide law that has vexed several generations of jurists, practitioners, and academic commentators. The analysis developed in this paper illustrates that the loss of control defence as defined in CJA sections 54 and 55 is a laudable initiative; its fuller assessment must await further appellate court determination before a definitive conclusion of its utility is possible. The CJA amendments tend to embrace a legitimate policy that those who found to be provoked by the activities of others to lose their self-control should be dealt with in a different way than those who commit intentional killings when motivated by their own desires or pursuit of gain. However, the 2012 Court of Appeal decisions rendered in the Parker troika of cases, provide useful direction as to how the law is likely to be applied. It shows an attitude in the Court of Appeal that the whole circumstances that challenged the defendant must be examined. The Court of Appeal has introduced an important ingredient into the potential use of sexual infidelity as a section 55 trigger - it is not a permissible stand-alone factor, but it may legitimately form part of an entire qualifying trigger circumstance.

Keywords: loss of self-control, Coroners and Justice Act 2009, provocation, diminished responsibility

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21 Cerebrovascular Modeling: A Vessel Network Approach for Fluid Distribution

Authors: Karla E. Sanchez-Cazares, Kim H. Parker, Jennifer H. Tweedy

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The purpose of this work is to develop a simple compartmental model of cerebral fluid balance including blood and cerebrospinal-fluid (CSF). At the first level the cerebral arteries and veins are modelled as bifurcating trees with constant scaling factors between generations which are connected through a homogeneous microcirculation. The arteries and veins are assumed to be non-rigid and the cross-sectional area, resistance and mean pressure in each generation are determined as a function of blood volume flow rate. From the mean pressure and further assumptions about the variation of wall permeability, the transmural fluid flux can be calculated. The results suggest the next level of modelling where the cerebral vasculature is divided into three compartments; the large arteries, the small arteries, the capillaries and the veins with effective compliances and permeabilities derived from the detailed vascular model. These vascular compartments are then linked to other compartments describing the different CSF spaces, the cerebral ventricles and the subarachnoid space. This compartmental model is used to calculate the distribution of fluid in the cranium. Known volumes and flows for normal conditions are used to determine reasonable parameters for the model, which can then be used to help understand pathological behaviour and suggest clinical interventions.

Keywords: cerebrovascular, compartmental model, CSF model, vascular network

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20 Chart Review of Patients on a Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Inpatient Unit: A Jordanian Psychiatrist’s Perspective

Authors: Mahmoud Bashtawi, Nasreen Roberts, Kevin Parker, Mazin Alqhazo

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Background: The pediatric literature is sparse with respect to the differences between child psychiatric units in different cultures and different countries. Methods: Retrospectively, the data were extracted from electronic charts for 206 admissions in a university hospital inpatient child and adolescent psychiatry unit in Ontario. Results: There was 75% agreement with the discharge diagnosis. An admission diagnosis of ADHD produced odds ratios (OR) of 17.3 and 7.6 in favour of a discharge diagnosis of ADHD and disordered conduct (ODD and CD combined), respectively, while admission diagnosis of disordered conduct produced an OR of 77.3 in favour of a discharge diagnosis of disordered conduct. We found strong negative and positive associations between disordered conduct at discharge and the prescription of antipsychotics (+), antidepressants (-), and stimulants (-), and there was a strong association between a disordered conduct diagnosis and medication-free status. The powerful effect size of stimulant medication was specific to the association between a primary diagnosis of ADHD (v not-ADHD) and stimulant medication (x²=127.5, df = 1, phi = .79, p< 0.0001). Conclusions: It is suggested that the inpatient stay helped to refine the formulation and to improve the child’s well-being.

Keywords: inpatient, adolescent, chart review, disruptive behaviour, Jordan

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19 Content Analysis of Depictions of Terrorism in U.S. Major Motion Pictures: A Social Constructionist Perspective

Authors: Raleigh Blasdell, Amanda M. Sharp Parker, Lauren Waldrop, Brigid Toney

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It has been demonstrated that fictional media sources have persuasive effects on public beliefs; this study contributes to the social constructionist literature by conducting a content analysis of U.S. major motion pictures involving terrorism. Using the Unified Film Population Sampling Methodology, the top-grossing films were identified to examine the frequency and context of several constructs of terrorism, including terrorist demographics, type of terrorism, country of origin, organizational affiliation, crime typology, and victim demographics. Comparisons of these constructs, as depicted in the films, were then made with the extant academic literature on terrorism. The data provide notable information regarding the representation of terrorism by the film industry, as well the discrepancies between the scholarly literature and depictions in popular films. The results indicate vast differences between fiction and reality, emphasizing a 'Middle Eastern Islamic male' terrorist stereotype. Using the theoretical foundation of social constructionism, the findings provide insight into how inaccurate depictions in film can influence society’s beliefs about terrorism and terrorists, which subsequently can translate into public support for legislation and policies that are often fueled by misinformation.

Keywords: film, media, social constructionism, terrorism

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18 Flight School Perceptions of Electric Planes for Training

Authors: Chelsea-Anne Edwards, Paul Parker

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Flight school members are facing a major disruption in the technologies available for them to fly as electric planes enter the aviation industry. The year 2020 marked a new era in aviation with the first type certification of an electric plane. The Pipistrel Velis Electro is a two-seat electric aircraft (e-plane) designed for flight training. Electric flight training has the potential to deeply reduce emissions, noise, and cost of pilot training. Though these are all attractive features, understanding must be developed on the perceptions of the essential actor of the technology, the pilot. This study asks student pilots, flight instructors, flight center managers, and other members of flight schools about their perceptions of e-planes. The questions were divided into three categories: safety and trust of the technology, expected costs in comparison to conventional planes, and interest in the technology, including their desire to fly electric planes. Participants were recruited from flight schools using a protocol approved by the Office of Research Ethics. None of these flight schools have an e-plane in their fleet so these views are based on perceptions rather than direct experience. The results revealed perceptions that were strongly positive with many qualitative comments indicating great excitement about the potential of the new electric aviation technology. Some concerns were raised regarding battery endurance limits. Overall, the flight school community is clearly in favor of introducing electric propulsion technology and reducing the environmental impacts of their industry.

Keywords: electric planes, flight training, green aircraft, student pilots, sustainable aviation

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17 Self‑reported Auditory Problems Are Associated with Adverse Mental Health Outcomes and Alcohol Misuse in the UK Armed Forces

Authors: Fred N. H. Parker, Nicola T. Fear, S. A. M. Stevelink, L. Rafferty

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Purpose Auditory problems, such as hearing loss and tinnitus, have been associated with mental health problems and alcohol misuse in the UK general population and in the US Armed Forces; however, few studies have examined these associations within the UK Armed Forces. The present study examined the association between auditory problems and probable common mental disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder and alcohol misuse. Methods 5474 serving and ex-service personnel from the UK Armed Forces were examined, selected from those who responded to phase two (data collection 2007–09) and phase three (2014–16) of a military cohort study. Multivariable logistic regression was used to examine the association between auditory problems at phase two and mental health problems at phase three. Results 9.7% of participants reported ever experiencing hearing problems alone, 7.9% reported tinnitus within the last month alone, and 7.8% reported hearing problems with tinnitus. After adjustment, hearing problems with tinnitus at phase two was associated with increased odds of probable common mental disorders (AOR = 1.50, 95% CI 1.09–2.08), post-traumatic stress disorder (AOR = 2.30, 95% CI 1.41–3.76), and alcohol misuse (AOR = 1.94, 95% CI 1.28–2.96) at phase three. Tinnitus alone was associated with probable post-traumatic stress disorder (AOR = 1.80, 95% CI 1.03–3.15); however, hearing problems alone were not associated with any outcomes of interest. Conclusions The association between auditory problems and mental health problems emphasizes the importance of the prevention of auditory problems in the Armed Forces: through enhanced audiometric screening, improved hearing protection equipment, and greater levels of utilization of such equipment.

Keywords: armed forces, hearing problems, tinnitus, mental health, alcohol misuse

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16 Cirrhosis Mortality Prediction as Classification using Frequent Subgraph Mining

Authors: Abdolghani Ebrahimi, Diego Klabjan, Chenxi Ge, Daniela Ladner, Parker Stride

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In this work, we use machine learning and novel data analysis techniques to predict the one-year mortality of cirrhotic patients. Data from 2,322 patients with liver cirrhosis are collected at a single medical center. Different machine learning models are applied to predict one-year mortality. A comprehensive feature space including demographic information, comorbidity, clinical procedure and laboratory tests is being analyzed. A temporal pattern mining technic called Frequent Subgraph Mining (FSM) is being used. Model for End-stage liver disease (MELD) prediction of mortality is used as a comparator. All of our models statistically significantly outperform the MELD-score model and show an average 10% improvement of the area under the curve (AUC). The FSM technic itself does not improve the model significantly, but FSM, together with a machine learning technique called an ensemble, further improves the model performance. With the abundance of data available in healthcare through electronic health records (EHR), existing predictive models can be refined to identify and treat patients at risk for higher mortality. However, due to the sparsity of the temporal information needed by FSM, the FSM model does not yield significant improvements. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first work to apply modern machine learning algorithms and data analysis methods on predicting one-year mortality of cirrhotic patients and builds a model that predicts one-year mortality significantly more accurate than the MELD score. We have also tested the potential of FSM and provided a new perspective of the importance of clinical features.

Keywords: machine learning, liver cirrhosis, subgraph mining, supervised learning

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15 Numerical Investigation of the Integration of a Micro-Combustor with a Free Piston Stirling Engine in an Energy Recovery System

Authors: Ayodeji Sowale, Athanasios Kolios, Beatriz Fidalgo, Tosin Somorin, Aikaterini Anastasopoulou, Alison Parker, Leon Williams, Ewan McAdam, Sean Tyrrel

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Recently, energy recovery systems are thriving and raising attention in the power generation sector, due to the request for cleaner forms of energy that are friendly and safe for the environment. This has created an avenue for cogeneration, where Combined Heat and Power (CHP) technologies have been recognised for their feasibility, and use in homes and small-scale businesses. The efficiency of combustors and the advantages of the free piston Stirling engines over other conventional engines in terms of output power and efficiency, have been observed and considered. This study presents the numerical analysis of a micro-combustor with a free piston Stirling engine in an integrated model of a Nano Membrane Toilet (NMT) unit. The NMT unit will use the micro-combustor to produce waste heat of high energy content from the combustion of human waste and the heat generated will power the free piston Stirling engine which will be connected to a linear alternator for electricity production. The thermodynamic influence of the combustor on the free piston Stirling engine was observed, based on the heat transfer from the flue gas to working gas of the free piston Stirling engine. The results showed that with an input of 25 MJ/kg of faecal matter, and flue gas temperature of 773 K from the micro-combustor, the free piston Stirling engine generates a daily output power of 428 W, at thermal efficiency of 10.7% with engine speed of 1800 rpm. An experimental investigation into the integration of the micro-combustor and free piston Stirling engine with the NMT unit is currently underway.

Keywords: free piston stirling engine, micro-combustor, nano membrane toilet, thermodynamics

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14 Investigation of Enterotoxigenic Staphylococcus aureus in Kitchen of Catering

Authors: Çiğdem Sezer, Aksem Aksoy, Leyla Vatansever

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This study has been done for the purpose of evaluation of public health and identifying of enterotoxigenic Staphyloccocus aureus in kitchen of catering. In the kitchen of catering, samples have been taken by swabs from surface of equipments which are in the salad section, meat section and bakery section. Samples have been investigated with classical cultural methods in terms of Staphyloccocus aureus. Therefore, as a 10x10 cm area was identified (salad, cutting and chopping surfaces, knives, meat grinder, meat chopping surface) samples have been taken with sterile swabs with helping FTS from this area. In total, 50 samples were obtained. In aseptic conditions, Baird-Parker agar (with egg yolk tellurite) surface was seeded with swabs. After 24-48 hours of incubation at 37°C, the black colonies with 1-1.5 mm diameter and which are surrounded by a zone indicating lecithinase activity were identified as S. aureus after applying Gram staining, catalase, coagulase, glucose and mannitol fermentation and termonuclease tests. Genotypic characterization (Staphylococcus genus and S.aureus species spesific) of isolates was performed by PCR. The ELISA test was applied to the isolates for the identification of staphylococcal enterotoxins (SET) A, B, C, D, E in bacterial cultures. Measurements were taken at 450 nm in an ELISA reader using an Ridascreen-Total set ELISA test kit (r-biopharm R4105-Enterotoxin A, B, C, D, E). The results were calculated according to the manufacturer’s instructions. A total of 50 samples of 97 S. aureus was isolated. This number has been identified as 60 with PCR analysis. According to ELISA test, only 1 of 60 isolates were found to be enterotoxigenic. Enterotoxigenic strains were identified from the surface of salad chopping and cutting. In the kitchen of catering, S. aureus identification indicates a significant source of contamination. Especially, in raw consumed salad preparation phase of contamination is very important. This food can be a potential source of food-borne poisoning their terms, and they pose a significant risk to consumers have been identified.

Keywords: Staphylococcus aureus, enterotoxin, catering, kitchen, health

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13 Probabilistic Life Cycle Assessment of the Nano Membrane Toilet

Authors: A. Anastasopoulou, A. Kolios, T. Somorin, A. Sowale, Y. Jiang, B. Fidalgo, A. Parker, L. Williams, M. Collins, E. J. McAdam, S. Tyrrel

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Developing countries are nowadays confronted with great challenges related to domestic sanitation services in view of the imminent water scarcity. Contemporary sanitation technologies established in these countries are likely to pose health risks unless waste management standards are followed properly. This paper provides a solution to sustainable sanitation with the development of an innovative toilet system, called Nano Membrane Toilet (NMT), which has been developed by Cranfield University and sponsored by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The particular technology converts human faeces into energy through gasification and provides treated wastewater from urine through membrane filtration. In order to evaluate the environmental profile of the NMT system, a deterministic life cycle assessment (LCA) has been conducted in SimaPro software employing the Ecoinvent v3.3 database. The particular study has determined the most contributory factors to the environmental footprint of the NMT system. However, as sensitivity analysis has identified certain critical operating parameters for the robustness of the LCA results, adopting a stochastic approach to the Life Cycle Inventory (LCI) will comprehensively capture the input data uncertainty and enhance the credibility of the LCA outcome. For that purpose, Monte Carlo simulations, in combination with an artificial neural network (ANN) model, have been conducted for the input parameters of raw material, produced electricity, NOX emissions, amount of ash and transportation of fertilizer. The given analysis has provided the distribution and the confidence intervals of the selected impact categories and, in turn, more credible conclusions are drawn on the respective LCIA (Life Cycle Impact Assessment) profile of NMT system. Last but not least, the specific study will also yield essential insights into the methodological framework that can be adopted in the environmental impact assessment of other complex engineering systems subject to a high level of input data uncertainty.

Keywords: sanitation systems, nano-membrane toilet, lca, stochastic uncertainty analysis, Monte Carlo simulations, artificial neural network

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12 The Impact of Temperamental Traits of Candidates for Aviation School on Their Strategies for Coping with Stress during Selection Exams in Physical Education

Authors: Robert Jedrys, Zdzislaw Kobos, Justyna Skrzynska, Zbigniew Wochynski

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Professions connected to aviation require an assessment of the suitability of health, psychological and psychomotor skills and overall physical fitness of the organism, who applies. Assessment of the physical condition is conducted by the committees consisting of aero-medical specialists in clinical medicine and aviation. In addition, psychological predispositions should be evaluated by specialized psychologists familiar with the specifics of the tasks and requirements for the various positions in aviation. Both, physical abilities and general physical fitness of candidates for aviation shall be assessed during the selection exams, which also test the ability to deal with stress what is very important in aviation. Hence, the mentioned exams in physical education not only help to judge on the ranking in candidates in terms of their efficiency and performance, but also allows to evaluate the functioning under stress measured using psychological tests. Moreover, before-test stress is a predictors of successfulness in the next stages of education and practical training in the aviation. The aim of the study was to evaluate the influence of temperamental traits on strategies used for coping with stress during selection exams in physical education, deciding on admission to aviation school. The study involved 30 candidates for fighter pilot training in aviation school . To evaluate the temperament 'The Formal Characteristics of Behavior-Temperament Inventory' (FCB-TI) by B. Zawadzki and J.Strelau was used. To determine the pattern of coping with stress 'The Coping Inventory for Stressful Situations' (CISS) to N. S. Endler and J. D. A. Parker were engaged. Study of temperament and styles of coping with stress was conducted directly before the exam selection of physical education. The results were analyzed with 'Statistica 9' program. The studies showed that:-There is a negative correlation between such a temperament feature as 'perseverance' and preferred style of coping with stress concentrated on the task (r = -0.590; p < 0.004); -There is a positive correlation between such a feature of temperament as 'emotional reactivity,' and preference to deal with a stressful situation with ‘style centered on emotions’ (r = 0.520; p <0.011); -There is a negative correlation between such a feature of temperament as ‘strength’ and ‘style of coping with stress concentrated on emotions’ (r = -0.580; p < 0.004). Studies indicate that temperament traits determine the perception of stress and preferred coping styles used during the selection, as during the exams in physical education.

Keywords: aviation, physical education, stress, temperamental traits

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11 The Relationship Between Weight Gain, Cyclicality of Diabetologic Education and the Experienced Stress: A Study Involving Pregnant Women

Authors: Agnieszka Rolinska, Marta Makara-Studzinska

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Introduction: In recent years, there has been an intensive development of research into the physiological relationships between the experienced stress and obesity. Moreover, strong chronic stress leads to the disorganization of a person’s activeness on various levels of functioning, including the behavioral and cognitive sphere (also in one’s diet). Aim: The present work addresses the following research questions: Is there a relationship between an increase in stress related to the disease and the need for the cyclicality of diabetologic education in gestational diabetes? Are there any differences in terms of the experienced stress during the last three months of pregnancy in women with gestational diabetes and in normal pregnancy between the patients with normal weight gains and those with abnormal weight gains? Are there any differences in terms of stress coping styles in women with gestational diabetes and in normal pregnancy between the patients with normal weight gains and those with abnormal weight gains? Method: The study involved pregnant women with gestational diabetes (treated with diet, without insulin therapy) and in normal pregnancy – 206 women in total. The following psychometric tools were employed: Perceived Stress Scale (PSS; Cohen, Kamarck, Mermelstein), Coping Inventory for Stressful Situations (CISS; Endler, Parker) and authors’ own questionnaire. Gestational diabetes mellitus was diagnosed on the basis of the results of fasting oral glucose tolerance test (75 g OGTT). Body weight measurements were confirmed in a diagnostic interview, taking into account medical data. Regularities in weight gains in pregnancy were determined according to the recommendations of the Polish Gynecological Society and American norms determined by the Institute of Medicine (IOM). Conclusions: An increase in stress related to the disease varies in patients with differing requirements for the cyclical nature of diabetologic education (i.e. education which is systematically repeated). There are no differences in terms of recently experienced stress and stress coping styles between women with gestational diabetes and those in normal pregnancy. There is a relationship between weight gains in pregnancy and the stress experienced in life as well as stress coping styles – both in pregnancy complicated by diabetes and in physiological pregnancy. In the discussion of the obtained results, the authors refer to scientific reports from English-language magazines of international range.

Keywords: diabetologic education, gestational diabetes, stress, weight gain in pregnancy

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10 Towards Competence-Based Regulatory Sciences Education in Sub-Saharan Africa: Identification of Competencies

Authors: Abigail Ekeigwe, Bethany McGowan, Loran C. Parker, Stephen Byrn, Kari L. Clase

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There are growing calls in the literature to develop and implement competency-based regulatory sciences education (CBRSE) in sub-Saharan Africa to expand and create a pipeline of a competent workforce of regulatory scientists. A defined competence framework is an essential component in developing competency-based education. However, such a competence framework is not available for regulatory scientists in sub-Saharan Africa. The purpose of this research is to identify entry-level competencies for inclusion in a competency framework for regulatory scientists in sub-Saharan Africa as a first step in developing CBRSE. The team systematically reviewed the literature following the PRISMA guidelines for systematic reviews and based on a pre-registered protocol on Open Science Framework (OSF). The protocol has the search strategy and the inclusion and exclusion criteria for publications. All included publications were coded to identify entry-level competencies for regulatory scientists. The team deductively coded the publications included in the study using the 'framework synthesis' model for systematic literature review. The World Health Organization’s conceptualization of competence guided the review and thematic synthesis. Topic and thematic codings were done using NVivo 12™ software. Based on the search strategy in the protocol, 2345 publications were retrieved. Twenty-two (n=22) of the retrieved publications met all the inclusion criteria for the research. Topic and thematic coding of the publications yielded three main domains of competence: knowledge, skills, and enabling behaviors. The knowledge domain has three sub-domains: administrative, regulatory governance/framework, and scientific knowledge. The skills domain has two sub-domains: functional and technical skills. Identification of competencies is the primal step that serves as a bedrock for curriculum development and competency-based education. The competencies identified in this research will help policymakers, educators, institutions, and international development partners design and implement competence-based regulatory science education in sub-Saharan Africa, ultimately leading to access to safe, quality, and effective medical products.

Keywords: competence-based regulatory science education, competencies, systematic review, sub-Saharan Africa

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9 Comparison of the Common Factors of the Top Academic Elementary Schools to the Average Elementary Schools in California: Looking beyond School Leadership

Authors: Lindy Valdez, Daryl Parker

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Introduction: There has been much research on academic achievement in elementary schools. Most of the research has been on school leadership. While research has focused on the role of leadership on school improvement, little research has examined what variables the top elementary schools have in common. To undertake school improvement, it is important to understand what factors the best schools share. The purpose of this study was to examine data of the “Best Elementary Schools in California,” based on academic achievement as rated by three prominent websites and determine if these schools had any common factors which were different than the statewide averages. The variables examined included access to subject matter specialists (physical education, art, and music), librarians, after school programs, class size, socioeconomic status, and diversity. The participants consisted of the top public elementary schools in California based on the websites i)https://www.niche.com/k12/search/best-schools/, ii)https://www.finder.com/best-schools-california,and iii)https://www.schooldigger.com/go/CA/schoolrank.aspx. The data for subject matter specialists (physical education, art, and music), librarians, after school programs, class size, socioeconomic status, and diversity were collected from these top schools and compared to California statewide averages. Results indicate that top public elementary schools in California have a high number of subject matter specialists that teach physical education, art, and music. These positions are on the decline in the average public elementary school in California, but the top schools have abundant access to these specialists. The physical education specialist has the highest statistically significant difference between the nationwide average and the top schools—librarians, and after school programs are also most commonly high in top public elementary schools in California. The high presence of these programs may be aiding academic achievement in less visible ways. Class size is small, socio-economic status is high, and diversity is low among top public elementary schools in California when compared to the statewide average public elementary schools in California. The single largest area of discrepancy was between physical education specialists in a top school and their state and nationwide averages. The socioeconomic status of schools and parents may be an underlining factor affecting several other variables. This affluence could explain how these schools were able to have access to subject matter specialists, after-school activities, and, therefore, more opportunities for physical activity and greater learning opportunities affecting academic achievement.

Keywords: academic achievement, elementary education, factors, schools

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8 The Impact of Physical Activity for Recovering Cancer Patients

Authors: Martyn Queen, Diane Crone, Andrew Parker, Saul Bloxham

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Rationale: There is a growing body of evidence that supports the use of physical activity during and after cancer treatment. However, activity levels for patients remain low. As more cancer patients are treated successfully, and treatment costs continue to escalate, physical activity may be a promising adjunct to a person-centred healthcare approach to recovery. Aim: The aim was to further understand how physical activity may enhance the recovery process for a group of mixed-site cancer patients. Objectives: The research investigated longitudinal changes in physical activity and perceived the quality of life between two and six month’s post-exercise interventions. It also investigated support systems that enabled patients to sustain these perceived changes. Method: The respondent cohort comprised 14 mixed-site cancer patients aged 43-70 (11 women, 3 men), who participated in a two-phase physical activity intervention that took place at a university in the South West of England. Phase 1 consisted of an eight-week structured physical activity programme; Phase 2 consisted of four months of non-supervised physical activity. Semi-structured interviews took place three times over six months with each participant. Grounded theory informed the data collection and analysis which, in turn, facilitated theoretical development. Findings: Our findings propose three theories on the impact of physical activity for recovering cancer patients: 1) Knowledge gained through a structured exercise programme can enable recovering cancer patients to independently sustain physical activity to four-month follow-up. 2) Sustaining physical activity for six months promotes positive changes in the quality of life indicators of chronic fatigue, self-efficacy, the ability to self-manage and energy levels. 3) Peer support from patients facilitates adherence to a structured exercise programme and support from a spouse, or life partner facilitates independently sustained physical activity to four-month follow-up. Conclusions: This study demonstrates that qualitative research can provide an evidence base that could be used to support future care plans for cancer patients. Findings also demonstrate that a physical activity intervention can be effective at helping cancer patients recover from the side effects of their treatment, and recommends that physical activity should become an adjunct therapy alongside traditional cancer treatments.

Keywords: physical activity, health, cancer recovery, quality of life, support systems, qualitative, grounded theory, person-centred healthcare

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7 Functional Neurocognitive Imaging (fNCI): A Diagnostic Tool for Assessing Concussion Neuromarker Abnormalities and Treating Post-Concussion Syndrome in Mild Traumatic Brain Injury Patients

Authors: Parker Murray, Marci Johnson, Tyson S. Burnham, Alina K. Fong, Mark D. Allen, Bruce McIff

Abstract:

Purpose: Pathological dysregulation of Neurovascular Coupling (NVC) caused by mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) is the predominant source of chronic post-concussion syndrome (PCS) symptomology. fNCI has the ability to localize dysregulation in NVC by measuring blood-oxygen-level-dependent (BOLD) signaling during the performance of fMRI-adapted neuropsychological evaluations. With fNCI, 57 brain areas consistently affected by concussion were identified as PCS neural markers, which were validated on large samples of concussion patients and healthy controls. These neuromarkers provide the basis for a computation of PCS severity which is referred to as the Severity Index Score (SIS). The SIS has proven valuable in making pre-treatment decisions, monitoring treatment efficiency, and assessing long-term stability of outcomes. Methods and Materials: After being scanned while performing various cognitive tasks, 476 concussed patients received an SIS score based on the neural dysregulation of the 57 previously identified brain regions. These scans provide an objective measurement of attentional, subcortical, visual processing, language processing, and executive functioning abilities, which were used as biomarkers for post-concussive neural dysregulation. Initial SIS scores were used to develop individualized therapy incorporating cognitive, occupational, and neuromuscular modalities. These scores were also used to establish pre-treatment benchmarks and measure post-treatment improvement. Results: Changes in SIS were calculated in percent change from pre- to post-treatment. Patients showed a mean improvement of 76.5 percent (σ= 23.3), and 75.7 percent of patients showed at least 60 percent improvement. Longitudinal reassessment of 24 of the patients, measured an average of 7.6 months post-treatment, shows that SIS improvement is maintained and improved, with an average of 90.6 percent improvement from their original scan. Conclusions: fNCI provides a reliable measurement of NVC allowing for identification of concussion pathology. Additionally, fNCI derived SIS scores direct tailored therapy to restore NVC, subsequently resolving chronic PCS resulting from mTBI.

Keywords: concussion, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), neurovascular coupling (NVC), post-concussion syndrome (PCS)

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6 The Dynamics of Planktonic Crustacean Populations in an Open Access Lagoon, Bordered by Heavy Industry, Southwest, Nigeria

Authors: E. O. Clarke, O. J. Aderinola, O. A. Adeboyejo, M. A. Anetekhai

Abstract:

Aims: The study is aimed at establishing the influence of some physical and chemical parameters on the abundance, distribution pattern and seasonal variations of the planktonic crustacean populations. Place and Duration of Study: A premier investigation into the dynamics of planktonic crustacean populations in Ologe lagoon was carried out from January 2011 to December 2012. Study Design: The study covered identification, temporal abundance, spatial distribution and diversity of the planktonic crustacea. Methodology: Standard techniques were used to collect samples from eleven stations covering five proximal satellite towns (Idoluwo, Oto, Ibiye, Obele, and Gbanko) bordering the lagoon. Data obtained were statistically analyzed using linear regression and hierarchical clustering. Results:Thirteen (13) planktonic crustacean populations were identified. Total percentage abundance was highest for Bosmina species (20%) and lowest for Polyphemus species (0.8%). The Pearson’s correlation coefficient (“r” values) between total planktonic crustacean population and some physical and chemical parameters showed that positive correlations having low level of significance occurred with salinity (r = 0.042) (sig = 0.184) and with surface water dissolved oxygen (r = 0.299) (sig = 0.155). Linear regression plots indicated that, the total population of planktonic crustacea were mainly influenced and only increased with an increase in value of surface water temperature (Rsq = 0.791) and conductivity (Rsq = 0.589). The total population of planktonic crustacea had a near neutral (zero correlation) with the surface water dissolved oxygen and thus, does not significantly change with the level of the surface water dissolved oxygen. The correlations were positive with NO3-N (midstream) at Ibiye (Rsq =0.022) and (downstream) Gbanko (Rsq =0.013), PO4-P at Ibiye (Rsq =0.258), K at Idoluwo (Rsq =0.295) and SO4-S at Oto (Rsq = 0.094) and Gbanko (Rsq = 0.457). The Berger-Parker Dominance Index (BPDI) showed that the most dominant species was Bosmina species (BPDI = 1.000), followed by Calanus species (BPDI = 1.254). Clusters by squared Euclidan distances using average linkage between groups showed proximities, transcending the borders of genera. Conclusion: The results revealed that planktonic crustacean population in Ologe lagoon undergo seasonal perturbations, were highly influenced by nutrient, metal and organic matter inputs from river Owoh, Agbara industrial estate and surrounding farmlands and were patchy in spatial distribution.

Keywords: diversity, dominance, perturbations, richness, crustacea, lagoon

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5 Infectivity of Glossina pallidipes Salivary Gland Hypertrophy Virus (GpSGHV) to Various Tsetse Species

Authors: Guler D. Uzel, Andrew G. Parker, Robert L. Mach, Adly Abd-Alla

Abstract:

Several tsetse fly species (Diptera: Glossinidae) in natural or colonized populations can be infected with the salivary gland hypertrophy virus (SGHV), a circular dsDNA virus (Hytrosaviridae). The virus infection is mainly asymptomatic but, in some species under certain conditions, the infection can produce salivary gland hypertrophy (SGH) symptoms. In the laboratory colonized tsetse, flies with SGH have reduced fertility, which negatively affects colony performance. Therefore, a high prevalence of SGH in insect mass rearing represents a major challenge for tsetse control using the sterile insect technique. The main objective of this study is to analyze the impact of Glossina pallidipes SGHV infection in various tsetse species on mortality and productivity and its impact on the symbiotic bacteria. Hypertropied salivary glands (SG) were collected from G. pallidipes into phosphate buffered saline (PBS) to prepare suspension; 2 µl aliquots were injected into adults of several tsetse species (G. pallidipes (Gp), G. p. gambiensis (Gpg), G. brevipalpis (Gb), G. morsitans morsitans (Gmm), G. morsitans centralis (Gmc) and G. fuscipes (Gf)) and the change in virus and symbiont titers were analyzed using qPCR. The development of SGH in the F1 was detected by dissection 10 days after emergence and virus infection was confirmed by PCR. The impact of virus infection on fly mortality and productivity was recorded. 2 µl aliquots were also injected into 3rd instar larvae of the different species and the adult SGs assayed by PCR for virus. Virus positive SGs from each species were homogenized in PBS and pooled within species for injection into larvae of the same species. Flies injected with PBS were used as control. Injecting teneral flies with SGHV caused increasing virus titer over time in all species but no SGH was detected. Dissection of the F1 also showed no development of SGH except in Gp (the homologous host). Injection of SGHV did not have any impact on the prevalence of the tsetse symbionts, but an increase in Sodalis titer was observed correlated with fly age regardless of virus infection. The virus infection had a negative impact on productivity and mortality. SGHV injection into larvae of the different species produced SGHV infected glands in the adults determined by PCR with a rate of 60%, 27%, 16%, 7% and 7% for Gp, Gf, Gpg, Gmm and Gmc, respectively. Virus positive SGs observed in the heterologous species were smaller than SGH found in Gp. No virus positive SG was detected by PCR in Gb and no SGH was observed in any adults except in Gp. Injecting virus suspension from the virus positive SGs into conspecific larvae did not produce any adults with infected SGs (except in Gp). SGHV can infect all tested tsetse species. Although the virus can infect and increase in titer in other tsetse species and affect fly mortality and productivity, no vertical virus transmission was observed in other tsetse species with might indicate a transmission barrier in these species, and virus collected from flies injected as larvae was not infective by injection.

Keywords: DNA viruses, glossina, hytrosaviridae, symbiotic bacteria, tsetse

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4 Multi-Institutional Report on Toxicities of Concurrent Nivolumab and Radiation Therapy

Authors: Neha P. Amin, Maliha Zainib, Sean Parker, Malcolm Mattes

Abstract:

Purpose/Objectives: Combination immunotherapy (IT) and radiation therapy (RT) is an actively growing field of clinical investigation due to promising findings of synergistic effects from immune-mediated mechanisms observed in preclinical studies and clinical data from case reports of abscopal effects. While there are many ongoing trials of combined IT-RT, there are still limited data on toxicity and outcome optimization regarding RT dose, fractionation, and sequencing of RT with IT. Nivolumab (NIVO), an anti-PD-1 monoclonal antibody, has been rapidly adopted in the clinic over the past 2 years, resulting in more patients being considered for concurrent RT-NIVO. Knowledge about the toxicity profile of combined RT-NIVO is important for both the patient and physician when making educated treatment decisions. The acute toxicity profile of concurrent RT-NIVO was analyzed in this study. Materials/Methods: A retrospective review of all consecutive patients who received NIVO from 1/2015 to 5/2017 at 4 separate centers within two separate institutions was performed. Those patients who completed a course of RT from 1 day prior to initial NIVO infusion through 1 month after last NIVO infusion were considered to have received concurrent therapy and included in the subsequent analysis. Descriptive statistics are reported for patient/tumor/treatment characteristics and observed acute toxicities within 3 months of RT completion. Results: Among 261 patients who received NIVO, 46 (17.6%) received concurrent RT to 67 different sites. The median f/u was 3.3 (.1-19.8) months, and 11/46 (24%) were still alive at last analysis. The most common histology, RT prescription, and treatment site included non-small cell lung cancer (23/46, 50%), 30 Gy in 10 fractions (16/67, 24%), and central thorax/abdomen (26/67, 39%), respectively. 79% (53/67) of irradiated sites were treated with 3D-conformal technique and palliative dose-fractionation. Grade 3, 4, and 5 toxicities were experienced by 11, 1, and 2 patients, respectively. However all grade 4 and 5 toxicities were outside of the irradiated area and attributed to the NIVO alone, and only 4/11 (36%) of the grade 3 toxicities were attributed to the RT-NIVO. The irradiated site in these cases included the brain [2/10 (20%)] and central thorax/abdomen [2/19 (10.5%)], including one unexpected grade 3 pancreatitides following stereotactic body RT to the left adrenal gland. Conclusions: Concurrent RT-NIVO is generally well tolerated, though with potentially increased rates of severe toxicity when irradiating the lung, abdomen, or brain. Pending more definitive data, we recommend counseling patients on the potentially increased rates of side effects from combined immunotherapy and radiotherapy to these locations. Future prospective trials assessing fractionation and sequencing of RT with IT will help inform combined therapy recommendations.

Keywords: combined immunotherapy and radiation, immunotherapy, Nivolumab, toxicity of concurrent immunotherapy and radiation

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3 Elevated Celiac Antibodies and Abnormal Duodenal Biopsies Associated with IBD Markers: Possible Role of Altered Gut Permeability and Inflammation in Gluten Related Disorders

Authors: Manav Sabharwal, Ruda Rai Md, Candace Parker, James Ridley

Abstract:

Wheat is one of the most commonly consumed grains worldwide, which contains gluten. Nowadays, gluten intake is considered to be a trigger for GRDs, including Celiac disease (CD), a common genetic disease affecting 1% of the US population, non-celiac gluten sensitivity (NCGS) and wheat allergy. NCGS is being recognized as an acquired gluten-sensitive enteropathy that is prevalent across age, ethnic and geographic groups. The cause of this entity is not fully understood, and recent studies suggest that it is more common in participants with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), with iron deficiency anemia, symptoms of fatigue, and has considerable overlap in symptoms with IBS and Crohn’s disease. However, these studies were lacking in availability of complete serologies, imaging tests and/or pan-endoscopy. We performed a prospective study of 745 adult patients who presented to an outpatient clinic for evaluation of chronic upper gastro-intestinal symptoms and subsequently underwent an upper endoscopic (EGD) examination as standard of care. Evaluation comprised of comprehensive celiac antibody panel, inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) serologic markers, duodenal biopsies and Small Bowel Video Capsule Endoscopy (VCE), when available. At least 6 biopsy specimens were obtained from the duodenum and proximal jejunum during EGD, and CD3+ Intraepithelial lymphocytes (IELs) and villous architecture were evaluated by a single experienced pathologist, and VCE was performed by a single experienced gastroenterologist. Of the 745 patients undergoing EGD, 12% (93/745) patients showed elevated CD3+ IELs in the duodenal biopsies. 52% (387/745) completed a comprehensive CD panel and 7.2% (28/387) were positive for at least 1 CD antibody (Tissue transglutaminase (tTG), being the most common antibody in 65% (18/28)). Of these patients, 18% (5/28) showed increased duodenal CD3+ IELs, but 0% showed villous blunting or distortion to meet criteria for CD. Surprisingly, 43% (12/28) were positive for at 1 IBD serology (ASCA, ANCA or expanded IBD panel (LabCorp)). Of these 28 patients, 29% (8/28) underwent a SB VCE, of which 100 % (8/8) showed significant jejuno-ileal mucosal lesions diagnostic for IBD. Findings of abnormal CD antibodies (7.2%, 28/387) and increased CD3+ IELs on duodenal biopsy (12%, 93/745) were observed frequently in patients with UGI symptoms undergoing EGD in an outpatient clinic. None met criteria for CD, and a high proportion (43%, 12/28) showed evidence of overlap with IBD. This suggests a potential causal link of acquired GRDs to underlying inflammation and gut mucosal barrier disruption. Further studies to investigate a role for abnormal antigen presentation of dietary gluten to gut associated lymphoid tissue as a cause are justified. This may explain a high prevalence of GRDs in the population and correlation with IBS, IBD and other gut inflammatory disorders.

Keywords: celiac, gluten sensitive enteropathy, lymphocitic enteritis, IBS, IBD

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2 Petrograpgy and Major Elements Chemistry of Granitic rocks of the Nagar Parkar Igneous Complex, Tharparkar, Sindh

Authors: Amanullah Lagharil, Majid Ali Laghari, M. Qasim, Jan. M., Asif Khan, M. Hassan Agheem

Abstract:

The Nagar Parkar area in southeastern Sindh is a part of the Thar Desert adjacent to the Runn of Kutchh, and covers 480 km2. It contains exposures of a variety of igneous rocks referred to as the Nagar Parkar Igneous Complex. The complex comprises rocks belonging to at least six phases of magmatism, from oldest to youngest: 1) amphibolitic basement rocks, 2) riebeckite-aegirine grey granite, 3) biotite-hornblende pink granite, 4) acid dykes, 5) rhyolite “plugs”, and basic dykes (Jan et al., 1997). The last three of these are not significant in volume. Radiometric dates are lacking but the grey and pink granites are petrographically comparable to the Siwana and Jalore plutons, respectively, emplaced in the Malani volcanic series. Based on these similarities and proximity, the phase 2 to 6 bodies in the Nagar Parkar may belong to the Late Proterozoic (720–745 Ma) Malani magmatism that covers large areas in western Rajasthan. Khan et al. (2007) have reported a 745 ±30 – 755 ±22 Ma U-Th-Pb age on monazite from the pink granite. The grey granite is essentially composed of perthitic feldspar (microperthite, mesoperthite), quartz, small amount of plagioclase and, characteristically, sodic minerals such as riebeckite and aegirine. A few samples lack aegirine. Fe-Ti oxide and minute, well-developed crystals of zircon occur in almost all the studied samples. Tourmaline, fluorite, apatite and rutile occur in only some samples and astrophyllite is rare. Allanite, sphene and leucoxene occur as minor accessories along with local epidote. The pink granite is mostly leucocratic, but locally rich in biotite (up to 7 %). It is essentially made up of microperthite and quartz, with local microcline, and minor plagioclase (albite-oligoclase). Some rocks contain sufficient oligoclase and can be called adamellite or quartz mozonite. Biotite and hornblende are main accessory minerals along with iron oxide, but in a few samples are without hornblende. Fayalitic olivine, zircon, sphene, apatite, tourmaline, fluorite, allanite and cassiterite occur as sporadic accessory minerals. Epidote, carbonate, sericite and muscovite are produced due to the alteration of feldspar. This work concerns the major element geochemistry and comparison of the principal granitic rocks of Nagar Parkar. According to the scheme of De La Roche et al. (1980), majority of the grey and pink granites classify as alkali granite, 20 % as granite and 10 % as granodiorite. When evaluated on the basis of Shand's indices (after Maniar and Piccoli, 1989), the grey and pink granites span all three fields (peralkaline, metaluminous and peraluminous). Of the analysed grey granites, 67 % classify as peralkaline, 20 % as peraluminous and 10 % as metaluminous, while 50 % of pink granites classify as peralkaline, 30 % metaluminous and 20 % peraluminous.

Keywords: petrography, nagar parker, granites, geological sciences

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1 Canisters for Radioactive Waste Transport, Storage and Disposal in Boreholes

Authors: C. Parker, D. Garrido, F. Brundish, M. Frei, R. Baltzer, S. Sisley

Abstract:

Countries around the world continue to work on plans to develop safe, secure, and permanent deep geological disposal facilities for high-level waste, including spent nuclear fuel and other highly radioactive materials. Deep Isolation developed a disposal method that uses directional drilling techniques and emplaces disposal canisters in either a vertical, deviated or horizontal orientation deep underground. This provides a more economical disposal solution for spent fuel and high-level waste from advanced reactors, small modular reactors and for countries with smaller waste inventories, but it would be even more effective to package that waste into a disposal canister that could fit into a borehole when removed from a spent fuel pool. Furthermore, a standardized canister designed for borehole disposal presents an opportunity for greater system efficiencies throughout the fuel life-cycle and maintains options for other disposal methods such as mined repositories. During the past year, Deep Isolation, in partnership with NAC International (NAC), developed a more detailed engineered disposal canister designed for storage, transportation and disposal, which would eliminate the need for repackaging spent fuel for final disposal, leaving open many waste management options for the lifecycle of the waste. Each canister accommodates a single pressurized water reactor (PWR) fuel assembly, and up to 19 canisters fit within the cavity of the NAC MAGNASTOR concrete cask and NAC MAGNATRAN transportation cask. Preliminary structural, thermal, shielding and criticality safety evaluations were performed for multimodal (storage, transportation and disposal) for design-limiting conditions to develop a canister design sufficient to satisfy established regulatory requirements for storage and transportation and anticipated regulatory requirements for disposal. The disposal canister, which is part of an overall engineered barrier system for storage, transport, and borehole disposal, consists of a canister shell assembly, an internal basket assembly, and a removable (bolt-on) lifting fixture. The canister shell assembly consists of a cylindrical shell, an integrally welded bottom plate, and a field-installed closure lid. The canister includes drain and vent port features that are used in wet-loading operations to drain water, vacuum dry, and inert the canister cavity. The disposal canister design developed maximizes the use of readily available materials and product forms and eliminates the need for borated neutron absorber materials for criticality control for an economical borehole disposal solution. The cost of disposal for smaller waste inventories in properly sited horizontal borehole disposal system will be approximately 50% of the cost of a mined repository. Other factors must be considered but the siting, safety case and technology are sufficiently developed to show that nuclear waste can be safely disposed using borehole disposal repositories while offering cost savings when compared to the status quo. In 2022 Deep Isolation and NAC are collaborating with the UK’s Nuclear Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (NAMRC) to fine-tune the current canister design through a “Design for Manufacture” review and subsequent prototyping at NAMRC’s state-of-the-art manufacturing innovation laboratory.

Keywords: borehole, canister, innovative design, radioactive waste transportation, storage and disposal

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