Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 32

Search results for: Afonso R. Aquino

32 Methodologies for Management of Sustainable Tourism: A Case Study in Jalapão/to/Brazil

Authors: Mary L. G. S. Senna, Veruska C. Dutra, Afonso R. Aquino


The study is in application and analysis of two tourism management tools that can contribute to making public managers decision: the Barometer of Tourism Sustainability (BTS) and the Ecological Footprint (EF). The results have shown that BTS allows you to have an integrated view of the tourism system, awakening to the need for planning of appropriate actions so that it can achieve the positive scale proposed (potentially sustainable). Already the methodology of ecological tourism footprint is an important tool to measure potential impacts generated by tourism to tourist reality.

Keywords: barometer of tourism sustainability, ecological footprint of tourism, Jalapão/Brazil, sustainable tourism

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31 The Importance of Conserving Pre-Historical, Historical and Cultural Heritage and Its Tourist Exploitation

Authors: Diego Renan G. Tudela, Veruska C. Dutra, Mary Lucia Gomes Silveira de Senna, Afonso R. Aquino


Tourism in the present is the largest industry in the world, being an important global activity that has grown a lot in recent times. In this context, the activity of cultural tourism is growing, being seen as an important source of knowledge and information enjoyed by visitors. This article aims to discuss the cultural tourism, archaeological records and indigenous communities and the importance of preserving these invaluable sources of information, focusing on the records of the first peoples inhabiting the South American and North American lands. The study was based on discussions, theoretical studies, bibliographical research. Archaeological records are an important source of knowledge and information. Indigenous ethnic tourism represents a rescue of the authenticity of indigenous traditional cultures and their relation to the natural habitat. Cultural and indigenous tourism activity requires long-term planning to make it a sustainable activity.

Keywords: tourism, culture, preservation, discussions

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30 Monitoring of Key Indicators of Sustainable Tourism in the Jalapão State Park/Tocantins: A Case Study of Environmental Indicators

Authors: Veruska C. Dutra, Afonso R. Aquino


Since the 1980s, global tourism activity has consolidated worldwide to become an important economic contributor, and consequently, the sociocultural and environmental impacts are starting to become evidenced. This raises the need of discussing about actions for sustainable tourism that should be linked not only to the economy, but also to the environment and social aspects. The work that is going to be presented is part of a doctoral research project in Sciences undertaken at the Sao Paulo University, Brazil. It aims to analyze whether the monitoring of the tourism sector with a focus on sustainability is applicable or not, through those indicators, put in a case study in the Jalapão State Park (JSP) conservation unit, in the state of Tocantins, Brazil. This is a study of an interdisciplinary nature that had the deductive method as its guide. We concluded that the key points of the sustainable tourism, when analyzed with the focal point in environmental indicators, are an important evaluation and quantification tool of that activity in the study locus. It displayed itself as an adequate tool for monitoring, thus decoding, the main environmental impacts that occur in tourism regions and their intensity, which is made possible through analysis, and has the objective to trace ways to prevent and correct the presented impacts.

Keywords: indicators, tourism, sustainability, Jalapão

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29 Quality of Life of the Beneficiaries of the Government’s Bolsa Família Program: A Case Study in Mateiros/TO/Brazil

Authors: Mary L. G. S. Senna, Afonso R. Aquino, Veruska C. Dutra, Carlos H. C. Tolentino


The quality of life index, despite elucidating many discussions, the conceptual subjectivity of the term does not show precision, and consequently, many researchers seek to develop methods aiming to measure this concept, bringing it to a more concrete approach. In this study, the quality of life index method was used to analyze the population of Mateiros, Tocantins, Brazil for quality of life. After data collection, it was compared the quality of life index between the population and the group of beneficiaries of the Brazilian government assistance program Bolsa Família (Family Allowance). Some of the people interviewed receive financial aid from the federal government program Bolsa Família (22%). Comparisons were made among the final score of the quality of life index of the Mateiros population and the following factors: Gender, age, education, those working or not with tourism and those who receive or do not receive the Bolsa Família. It was observed that only the factor, Bolsa Família (p-score 0.0138), shows an association with quality of life improvement, noticing that those who have financial aid had a higher quality of life improvement than the rest of the population. It was concluded that, government assistance has shown a decisive element on the enhancement of Mateiros population quality of life, indicating that similar actions should be maintained.

Keywords: quality of life index, government aid to families, sustainable tourism, Bolsa Familia

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28 The Ecological Footprint of Tourism in Jalapão/TO/Brazil

Authors: Mary L. G. S. Senna, Afonso R. Aquino


The development of tourism causes negative impacts on the environment. It is in this context, through the Ecological Footprint (EF) method that this study aimed to characterize the impacts of ecotourism on the community of Mateiros, Jalapão, Brazil. The EF, which consisted in its original a method to construct a land use matrix, considering some major categories of human consumption such as food, housing, transportation, consumer goods and services, and six other categories from the main land use which are divided into the topics: land use, degraded environment, gardens, fertile land, pasture and forests protected by the government. The main objective of this index is to calculate the land area required for the production and maintenance of goods and services consumed by a community. The field research was conducted throughout the year of 2014 until July 2015. After the calculations of each category, these components were added according to the presented method in order to determine the annual EF of the tourism sector in Mateiros. The results show that the EF resulting from tourism in Mateiros is 2,194.22 hectares of land required for tourism activities in the region. The EF of tourism was considered high, nevertheless, if it is added the total of hectares needed annually for tourism activities, the result found would be 2,194.22 hectares needed to absorb the CO2 emissions generated in the region directly from the tourism sector.

Keywords: sustainable tourism, tourism ecological footprint, Jalapão/TO/Brazil

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27 Sustainable Perspectives and Local Development Potential through Tourism

Authors: Pedro H. S. Messetti, Mary L. G. S. Senna, Afonso R. Aquino


Sustainability is a very important and heavily discussed subject, expanding through tourism as well. The study proposition was to collect data and present it to the competent bodies so they can mold their public politics to improve the conditions of the site. It was hypothesized that the lack of data is currently affecting the quality of life and the sustainable development of the site and the tourism. The research was held in Mateiros, a city in the state of Tocantins (TO)/Brasil, 275km far from the capital city Palmas, being one of the 8 cities that comprises the Jalapão region, an ecotourism and adventure tourism site as well as an environmental protection area (Jalapão State Park). Because of the concentration of tourists during the high season and several tourist attractions being around, the research took place in Mateiros. The methodological procedure had a script of theoretical construction and investigation of the deductive scientific method parameters through a case study in the Jalapão/TO/Brazil region, using it as a tool for a questionnaire given to the competent bodies in an interview system with the UN sustainability indexes as a base. In the three sustainable development scope: environmental, social and economic, the results indicated that the data presented by the interviewed were scarce or nonexistent. It shows that more research is necessary, providing the tools for the ones responsible to propose action plans to improve the site, strengthening the tourism and making it even more sustainable.

Keywords: Jalapão/Brazil state park, sustainable tourism, UN sustainability indexes

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26 A Proposal of a Method to Measure the Satisfaction Indicator of the Local Community Concerning Tourism: A Case Study of Jalapão State Park, Tocantins

Authors: Veruska C. Dutra, Mary L. G. S. Senna, Afonso R. Aquino


Tourists bring many benefits to a local community, encouraging it to be involved in that activity; however, it may also have detrimental effects like garbage, noise, violence, external culture and the damaging of the natural environment among others, which may promote community dissatisfaction. The contact between the tourist and the local community is a concern, especially when the community is located near protected areas. In this case, the community must know the tourist destination well, so it can collaborate in the tourism development without harming the environment. In this context, the present article aims to demonstrate the results of a research study conducted as part of a doctorate program in Sciences from the University of Sao Paulo, Brazil. It had as an objective to elaborate a methodology proposal to measure the local community satisfaction indicator, with applicability on a case study in the Mateiros community located in the surrounding area of the Parque Estadual do Jalapão –PEJ conservation unit in the state of Tocantins, Brazil. This is a study of an interdisciplinary nature that had the deductive method as its guide. The indicator result is going to be presented in this study. It pointed out as negative factors: there is no involvement between the local community and the tourism sector, and there is also dissatisfaction with regard to the town’s basic services. The study showed as positive the local community knowledge about the various attractions in the surrounding area and that the group recognizes the importance of the tourism for the town and life. Concerning the methodology that was used, the results showed that it can collaborate in seeking actions of improvement and involvement of the community in the planning and development of the local tourism. It comes out as an efficient analysis tool, thus enabling the perceiving of the local community point of view.

Keywords: satisfaction indicator, tourism, community, Jalapão

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25 Study of Cahn-Hilliard Equation to Simulate Phase Separation

Authors: Nara Guimarães, Marcelo Aquino Martorano, Douglas Gouvêa


An investigation into Cahn-Hilliard equation was carried out through numerical simulation to identify a possible phase separation for one and two dimensional domains. It was observed that this equation can reproduce important mass fluxes necessary for phase separation within the miscibility gap and for coalescence of particles.

Keywords: Cahn-Hilliard equation, miscibility gap, phase separation, dimensional domains

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24 Multivalued Behavior for a Two-Level System Using Homotopy Analysis Method

Authors: Angelo I. Aquino, Luis Ma. T. Bo-ot


We use the Homotopy Analysis Method (HAM) to solve the system of equations modeling the two-level system and extract results which will pinpoint to turbulent behavior. We look at multi-valued solutions as indicative of turbulence or turbulent-like behavior. We take di erent speci c cases which result in multi-valued velocities. The solutions are in series form and application of HAM ensures convergence in some region.

Keywords: multivalued solutions, homotopy analysis method, two-level system, equation

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23 A Bathtub Curve from Nonparametric Model

Authors: Eduardo C. Guardia, Jose W. M. Lima, Afonso H. M. Santos


This paper presents a nonparametric method to obtain the hazard rate “Bathtub curve” for power system components. The model is a mixture of the three known phases of a component life, the decreasing failure rate (DFR), the constant failure rate (CFR) and the increasing failure rate (IFR) represented by three parametric Weibull models. The parameters are obtained from a simultaneous fitting process of the model to the Kernel nonparametric hazard rate curve. From the Weibull parameters and failure rate curves the useful lifetime and the characteristic lifetime were defined. To demonstrate the model the historic time-to-failure of distribution transformers were used as an example. The resulted “Bathtub curve” shows the failure rate for the equipment lifetime which can be applied in economic and replacement decision models.

Keywords: bathtub curve, failure analysis, lifetime estimation, parameter estimation, Weibull distribution

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22 Analysis of Fertilizer Effect in the Tilapia Growth of Mozambique (Oreochromis mossambicus)

Authors: Sérgio Afonso Mulema, Andrés Carrión García, Vicente Ernesto


This paper analyses the effect of fertilizer (organic and inorganic) in the growth of tilapia. An experiment was implemented in the Aquapesca Company of Mozambique; there were considered four different treatments. Each type of fertilizer was applied in two of these treatments; a feed was supplied to the third treatment, and the fourth was taken as control. The weight and length of the tilapia were used as the growth parameters, and to measure the water quality, the physical-chemical parameters were registered. The results show that the weight and length were different for tilapias cultivated in different treatments. These differences were evidenced mainly by organic and feed treatments, where there was the largest and smallest value of these parameters, respectively. In order to prove that these differences were caused only by applied treatment without interference for the aquatic environment, a Fisher discriminant analysis was applied, which confirmed that the treatments were exposed to the same environment condition.

Keywords: fertilizer, tilapia, growth, statistical methods

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21 The Culture of Extrajudicial Executions: An Investigative Study of the Philippines’ Fifth Republic

Authors: Nathalie Quinto, Danielle Solancho


In 1986, after Marcos’ Martial Law of 1972, the Philippines revised its constitution for the fifth time, under the Aquino Administration. Extrajudicial violence was expected to be lessened, if not completely eradicated after this was passed. However, state-sponsored executions continued to persist even in the present time. There are currently identified policy gaps when it comes to extrajudicial cases, as there is no generally accepted definition of the term in the Philippines. In this paper, a triangulation method of historically published papers, key informant interviews, and focus group discussions of academics, scholars, and people who are involved in various cases found, was utilized for the methodology. This paper explores the establishment of a normalized system of state-sponsored executions in the country and why the state resorts to this kind of action. It found that due to a weak political, and social institution, a culture of extrajudicial executions was established.

Keywords: extrajudicial execution, human rights, justice, security

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20 Molecular-Genetics Studies of New Unknown APMV Isolated from Wild Bird in Ukraine

Authors: Borys Stegniy, Anton Gerilovych, Oleksii Solodiankin, Vitaliy Bolotin, Anton Stegniy, Denys Muzyka, Claudio Afonso


New APMV was isolated from white fronted goose in Ukraine. This isolate was tested serologically using monoclonal antibodies in haemagglutination-inhibition tests against APMV1-9. As the results obtained isolate showed cross reactions with APMV7. Following investigations were provided for the full genome sequencing using random primers and cloning into pCRII-TOPO. Analysis of 100 transformed colonies of E.coli using traditional sequencing gave us possibilities to find only 3 regions, which could identify by BLAST. The first region with the length of 367 bp had 70 % nucleotide sequence identity to the APMV 12 isolate Wigeon/Italy/3920_1/2005 at genome position 2419-2784. Next region (344 bp) had 66 % identity to the same APMV 12 isolate at position 4760-5103. The last region (365 bp) showed 71 % identity to Newcastle disease virus strain M4 at position 12569-12928.

Keywords: APMV, Newcastle disease virus, Ukraine, full genome sequencing

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19 Green Walls and Living Facades: The Portuguese Experience

Authors: Andreia Cortes, Carla Pimentel-Rodrigues, Joao Almeida, Myriam Kanoun-Boule, Carla Carvalho, Antonio Tadeu, Armando Silva-Afonso


The adoption of green infrastructure is nowadays encouraged as an essential measure of urban planning and territorial development whenever it offers a better alternative, or is complementary, to current solutions. Green walls and living facades often provide healthy alternatives to traditional grey infrastructures, offering many benefits for both citizens and cities. Beyond the ability to improve environmental conditions and quality of life, they can augment the energy efficiency of buildings, enhance biodiversity and deliver a range of ecosystem services such as water purification, reduction of the urban heat island effect, improvement of air quality and climate change adaptation. For this communication, a systematic survey of the existing green walls and living facades in Portugal was carried out. Different systems were analyzed and compared in terms of dimensions, constructive solutions, vegetative species, maintenance necessities and environmental aspects.

Keywords: green buildings, green walls, living facades, sustainability construction

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18 Sustainable Biogas Upgrading: Characterization of Adsorption Properties of Tuff

Authors: Emanuele Bonamente, Andrea Aquino, Franco Cotana


This paper presents experimental results from the analysis of Tuff for CO2 and H2S removal from biogas. Synthetic zeolites, commonly used for biogas upgrading, are characterized by excellent performance in terms of carbon dioxide adsorption, however, cost and environmental footprint represent a negative contribute to their sustainability. Natural zeolites contained in Tuff, a totally inexpensive byproduct of the construction industry, show very interesting selective adsorption properties, associated with its availability in regions, as central Italy, where biogas production from small scale plants is rapidly increasing. An in-house experimental device was assembled to measure the adsorption capacity of Tuff as a function of partial CO2 pressure for different temperatures (i.e. adsorption isotherms). Results show performances as high as 66% with respect to commercial zeolites (13X). A sensitivity analysis of different regeneration processes is also presented. A comparative analysis of natural and synthetic zeolites was finally performed using biogas samples obtained from different types of feedstock and characterized by varying CO2 and H2S content.

Keywords: biogas upgrading, CO2 adsorption, sustainable energy, tuff

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17 How Markets React to Corporate Disclosure: An Analysis Using a SEM Model

Authors: Helena Susana Afonso Alves, Natália Maria Rafael Canadas, Ana Maria Rodrigues


We examined the impact of governance rules on information asymmetry, using the turnover ratio and the bid-ask spread as proxies for the information asymmetry. We used a SEM model and analyzed the indirect relations through the voluntary disclosure of information and the organizational performance. We built a voluntary disclosure index based on the information firms provided in their annual reports and divided the governance characteristics in two constructs: directors’ and supervisors’ structures and ownership structure. We concluded that the ownership structure exerts a direct influence on share price and share liquidity, Otherwise, the directors’ and supervisors’ structures exert an indirect influence, through the organizational performance and the voluntary disclosure of information. The results also show that for firms with high levels of disclosure the bid-ask spread is lower. However, in firms with a high ownership concentration investors tend to increase the bid-ask spreads and trade less, which, in this case, reduces the liquidity of the stock. The failure to find the relationship between voluntary disclosure of information and the turnover ratio shows us that the liquidity of shares is more related to the greater or lesser concentration of shareholders, with the performance of their companies than with the access to information. Moreover, it is clear that the role that information disclosure plays is mainly at the level of price formation.

Keywords: corporate governance, information asymmetry, voluntary disclosure, structural equation modelling, SEM

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16 Mechanical Properties and Thermal Comfort of 3D Printed Hand Orthosis for Neurorehabilitation

Authors: Paulo H. R. G. Reis, Joana P. Maia, Davi Neiva Alves, Mariana R. C. Aquino, Igor B. Guimaraes, Anderson Horta, Thiago Santiago, Mariana Volpini


Additive manufacturing is a manufacturing technique used in many fields as a tool for the production of complex parts accurately. This technique has a wide possibility of applications in bioengineering, mainly in the manufacture of orthopedic devices, thanks to the versatility of shapes and surface details. The present article aims to evaluate the mechanical viability of a wrist-hand orthosis made using additive manufacturing techniques with Nylon 12 polyamide and compare this device with the wrist-hand orthosis manufactured by the traditional process with thermoplastic Ezeform. The methodology used is based on the application of computational simulations of voltage and temperature, from finite element analysis, in order to evaluate the properties of displacement, mechanical stresses and thermal comfort in the two devices. The execution of this work was carried out through a case study with a 29-year-old male patient. The modeling software involved was Meshmixer from US manufacturer Autodesk and Fusion 360 from the same manufacturer. The results demonstrated that the orthosis developed by 3D printing, from Nylon 12, presents better thermal comfort and response to the mechanical stresses exerted on the orthosis.

Keywords: additive manufacturing, finite elements, hand orthosis, thermal comfort, neurorehabilitation

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15 A Phase Change Materials Thermal Storage for Ground-Source Heat Pumps: Computational Fluid Dynamics Analysis of Innovative Layouts

Authors: Emanuele Bonamente, Andrea Aquino, Franco Cotana


The exploitation of the low-temperature geothermal resource via ground-source heat pumps is often limited by the high investment cost mainly due to borehole drilling. From the monitoring of a prototypal system currently used by a commercial building, it was found that a simple upgrade of the conventional layout, obtained including a thermal storage between the ground-source heat exchangers and the heat pump, can optimize the ground energy exploitation requiring for shorter/fewer boreholes. For typical applications, a reduction of up to 66% with respect to the conventional layout can be easily achieved. Results from the monitoring campaign of the prototype are presented in this paper, and upgrades of the thermal storage using phase change materials (PCMs) are proposed using computational fluid dynamics simulations. The PCM thermal storage guarantees an improvement of the system coefficient of performance both for summer cooling and winter heating (up to 25%). A drastic reduction of the storage volume (approx. 1/10 of the original size) is also achieved, making it possible to easily place it within the technical room, avoiding extra costs for underground displacement. A preliminary optimization of the PCM geometry is finally proposed.

Keywords: computational fluid dynamics (CFD), geothermal energy, ground-source heat pumps, phase change materials (PCM)

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14 Engineering of E-Learning Content Creation: Case Study for African Countries

Authors: María-Dolores Afonso-Suárez, Nayra Pumar-Carreras, Juan Ruiz-Alzola


This research addresses the use of an e-Learning creation methodology for learning objects. Throughout the process, indicators are being gathered, to determine if it responds to the main objectives of an engineering discipline. These parameters will also indicate if it is necessary to review the creation cycle and readjust any phase. Within the project developed for this study, apart from the use of structured methods, there has been a central objective: the establishment of a learning atmosphere. A place where all the professionals involved are able to collaborate, plan, solve problems and determine guides to follow in order to develop creative and innovative solutions. It has been outlined as a blended learning program with an assessment plan that proposes face to face lessons, coaching, collaboration, multimedia and web based learning objects as well as support resources. The project has been drawn as a long term task, the pilot teaching actions designed provide the preliminary results object of study. This methodology is been used in the creation of learning content for the African countries of Senegal, Mauritania and Cape Verde. It has been developed within the framework of the MACbioIDi, an Interreg European project for the International cooperation and development. The educational area of this project is focused in the training and advice of professionals of the medicine as well as engineers in the use of applications of medical imaging technology, specifically the 3DSlicer application and the Open Anatomy Browser.

Keywords: teaching contents engineering, e-learning, blended learning, international cooperation, 3dslicer, open anatomy browser

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13 Chemical Study of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCS) from Xylopia aromatica (LAM.) Mart (Annonaceae)

Authors: Vanessa G. P. Severino, JOÃO Gabriel M. Junqueira, Michelle N. G. do Nascimento, Francisco W. B. Aquino, João B. Fernandes, Ana P. Terezan


The scientific interest in analyzing VOCs represents a significant modern research field as a result of importance in most branches of the present life and industry. Therefore it is extremely important to investigate, identify and isolate volatile substances, since they can be used in different areas, such as food, medicine, cosmetics, perfumery, aromatherapy, pesticides, repellents and other household products through methods for extracting volatile constituents, such as solid phase microextraction (SPME), hydrodistillation (HD), solvent extraction (SE), Soxhlet extraction, supercritical fluid extraction (SFE), stream distillation (SD) and vacuum distillation (VD). The Chemometrics is an area of chemistry that uses statistical and mathematical tools for the planning and optimization of the experimental conditions, and to extract relevant chemical information multivariate chemical data. In this context, the focus of this work was the study of the chemical VOCs by SPME of the specie X. aromatica, in search of constituents that can be used in the industrial sector as well as in food, cosmetics and perfumery, since these areas industrial has a considerable role. In addition, by chemometric analysis, we sought to maximize the answers of this research, in order to search for the largest number of compounds. The investigation of flowers from X. aromatica in vitro and in alive mode proved consistent, but certain factors supposed influence the composition of metabolites, and the chemometric analysis strengthened the analysis. Thus, the study of the chemical composition of X. aromatica contributed to the VOCs knowledge of the species and a possible application.

Keywords: chemometrics, flowers, HS-SPME, Xylopia aromatica

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12 Design of an Innovative Geothermal Heat Pump with a PCM Thermal Storage

Authors: Emanuele Bonamente, Andrea Aquino


This study presents an innovative design for geothermal heat pumps with the goal of maximizing the system efficiency (COP - Coefficient of Performance), reducing the soil use (e.g. length/depth of geothermal boreholes) and initial investment costs. Based on experimental data obtained from a two-year monitoring of a working prototype implemented for a commercial building in the city of Perugia, Italy, an upgrade of the system is proposed and the performance is evaluated via CFD simulations. The prototype was designed to include a thermal heat storage (i.e. water), positioned between the boreholes and the heat pump, acting as a flywheel. Results from the monitoring campaign show that the system is still capable of providing the required heating and cooling energy with a reduced geothermal installation (approx. 30% of the standard length). In this paper, an optimization of the system is proposed, re-designing the heat storage to include phase change materials (PCMs). Two stacks of PCMs, characterized by melting temperatures equal to those needed to maximize the system COP for heating and cooling, are disposed within the storage. During the working cycle, the latent heat of the PCMs is used to heat (cool) the water used by the heat pump while the boreholes independently cool (heat) the storage. The new storage is approximately 10 times smaller and can be easily placed close to the heat pump in the technical room. First, a validation of the CFD simulation of the storage is performed against experimental data. The simulation is then used to test possible alternatives of the original design and it is finally exploited to evaluate the PCM-storage performance for two different configurations (i.e. single- and double-loop systems).

Keywords: geothermal heat pump, phase change materials (PCM), energy storage, renewable energies

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11 An Investigation of the Use of Visible Spectrophotometric Analysis of Lead in an Herbal Tea Supplement

Authors: Salve Alessandria Alcantara, John Armand E. Aquino, Ma. Veronica Aranda, Nikki Francine Balde, Angeli Therese F. Cruz, Elise Danielle Garcia, Antonie Kyna Lim, Divina Gracia Lucero, Nikolai Thadeus Mappatao, Maylan N. Ocat, Jamille Dyanne L. Pajarillo, Jane Mierial A. Pesigan, Grace Kristin Viva, Jasmine Arielle C. Yap, Kathleen Michelle T. Yu, Joanna J. Orejola, Joanna V. Toralba


Lead is a neurotoxic metallic element that is slowly accumulated in bones and tissues especially if present in products taken in a regular basis such as herbal tea supplements. Although sensitive analytical instruments are already available, the USP limit test for lead is still widely used. However, because of its serious shortcomings, Lang Lang and his colleagues developed a spectrophotometric method for determination of lead in all types of samples. This method was the one adapted in this study. The actual procedure performed was divided into three parts: digestion, extraction and analysis. For digestion, HNO3 and CH3COOH were used. Afterwards, masking agents, 0.003% and 0.001% dithizone in CHCl3 were added and used for the extraction. For the analysis, standard addition method and colorimetry were performed. This was done in triplicates under two conditions. The 1st condition, using 25µg/mL of standard, resulted to very low absorbances with an r2 of 0.551. This led to the use of a higher concentration, 1mg/mL, for condition 2. Precipitation of lead cyanide was observed and the absorbance readings were relatively higher but between 0.15-0.25, resulting to a very low r2 of 0.429. LOQ and LOD were not computed due to the limitations of the Milton-Roy Spectrophotometer. The method performed has a shorter digestion time, and used less but more accessible reagents. However, the optimum ratio of dithizone-lead complex must be observed in order to obtain reliable results while exploring other concentration of standards.

Keywords: herbal tea supplement, lead-dithizone complex, standard addition, visible spectroscopy

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10 Thermoluminescence Study of Cu Doped Lithium Tetra Borate Samples Synthesized by Water/Solution Assisted Method

Authors: Swarnapriya Thiyagarajan, Modesto Antonio Sosa Aquino, Miguel Vallejo Hernandez, Senthilkumar Kalaiselvan Dhivyaraj, Jayaramakrishnan Velusamy


In this paper the lithium tetra borate (Li2B4O7) was prepared by used water/solution assisted synthesis method. Once finished the synthesization, Copper (Cu) were used to doping material with Li2B4O7 in order to enhance its thermo luminescent properties. The heating temperature parameters were 750°C for 2 hr and 150°C for 2hr. The samples produced by water assisted method were doped at different doping percentage (0.02%, 0.04%, 0.06%, 0.08%, 0.12%, 0.5%, 0.1%, and 1%) of Cu.The characteristics and identification of Li2B4O7 (undoped and doped) were determined in four tests. They are X-ray diffraction (XRD), Scanning electron microscope (SEM), Photoluminescence (PL), Ultra violet visible spectroscopy (UV Vis). As it is evidence from the XRD and SEM results the obtained Li2B4O7 and Li2B4O7 doping with Cu was confirmed and also confirmed the chemical compositition and their morphologies. The obtained lithium tetraborate XRD pattern result was verified with the reference data of lithium tetraborate with tetragonal structure from JCPDS. The glow curves of Li2B4O7 and Li2B4O7 : Cu were obtained by thermo luminescence (TLD) reader (Harshaw 3500). The pellets were irradiated with different kind of dose (58mGy, 100mGy, 500mGy, and 945mGy) by using an X-ray source. Finally this energy response was also compared with TLD100. The order of kinetics (b), frequency factor (S) and activation energy (E) or the trapping parameters were calculated using peak shape method. Especially Li2B4O7: Cu (0.1%) presents good glow curve in all kind of doses. The experimental results showed that this Li2B4O7: Cu could have good potential applications in radiation dosimetry. The main purpose of this paper is to determine the effect of synthesis on the TL properties of doped lithium tetra borate Li2B4O7.

Keywords: dosimetry, irradiation, lithium tetraborate, thermoluminescence

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9 Speech Emotion Recognition: A DNN and LSTM Comparison in Single and Multiple Feature Application

Authors: Thiago Spilborghs Bueno Meyer, Plinio Thomaz Aquino Junior


Through speech, which privileges the functional and interactive nature of the text, it is possible to ascertain the spatiotemporal circumstances, the conditions of production and reception of the discourse, the explicit purposes such as informing, explaining, convincing, etc. These conditions allow bringing the interaction between humans closer to the human-robot interaction, making it natural and sensitive to information. However, it is not enough to understand what is said; it is necessary to recognize emotions for the desired interaction. The validity of the use of neural networks for feature selection and emotion recognition was verified. For this purpose, it is proposed the use of neural networks and comparison of models, such as recurrent neural networks and deep neural networks, in order to carry out the classification of emotions through speech signals to verify the quality of recognition. It is expected to enable the implementation of robots in a domestic environment, such as the HERA robot from the [email protected] team, which focuses on autonomous service robots for the domestic environment. Tests were performed using only the Mel-Frequency Cepstral Coefficients, as well as tests with several characteristics of Delta-MFCC, spectral contrast, and the Mel spectrogram. To carry out the training, validation and testing of the neural networks, the eNTERFACE’05 database was used, which has 42 speakers from 14 different nationalities speaking the English language. The data from the chosen database are videos that, for use in neural networks, were converted into audios. It was found as a result, a classification of 51,969% of correct answers when using the deep neural network, when the use of the recurrent neural network was verified, with the classification with accuracy equal to 44.09%. The results are more accurate when only the Mel-Frequency Cepstral Coefficients are used for the classification, using the classifier with the deep neural network, and in only one case, it is possible to observe a greater accuracy by the recurrent neural network, which occurs in the use of various features and setting 73 for batch size and 100 training epochs.

Keywords: emotion recognition, speech, deep learning, human-robot interaction, neural networks

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8 Use of Cellulosic Fibres in Double Layer Porous Asphalt

Authors: Márcia Afonso, Marisa Dinis-Almeida, Cristina Fael


Climate change, namely precipitation patterns alteration, has led to extreme conditions such as floods and droughts. In turn, excessive construction has led to the waterproofing of the soil, increasing the surface runoff and decreasing the groundwater recharge capacity. The permeable pavements used in areas with low traffic lead to a decrease in the probability of floods peaks occurrence and the sediments reduction and pollutants transport, ensuring rainwater quality improvement. This study aims to evaluate the porous asphalt performance, developed in the laboratory, with addition of cellulosic fibres. One of the main objectives of cellulosic fibres use is to stop binder drainage, preventing its loss during storage and transport. Comparing to the conventional porous asphalt the cellulosic fibres addition improved the porous asphalt performance. The cellulosic fibres allowed the bitumen content increase, enabling retention and better aggregates coating and, consequently, a greater mixture durability. With this solution, it is intended to develop better practices of resilience and adaptation to the extreme climate changes and respond to the sustainability current demands, through the eco-friendly materials use. The mix design was performed for different size aggregates (with fine aggregates – PA1 and with coarse aggregates – PA2). The percentage influence of the fibres to be used was studied. It was observed that overall, the binder drainage decreases as the cellulose fibres percentage increases. It was found that the PA2 mixture obtained most binder drainage relative to PA1 mixture, irrespective of the fibres percentage used. Subsequently, the performance was evaluated through laboratory tests of indirect tensile stiffness modulus, water sensitivity, permeability and permanent deformation. The stiffness modulus for the two mixtures groups (with and without cellulosic fibres) presented very similar values between them. For the water sensitivity test it was observed that porous asphalt containing more fine aggregates are more susceptible to the water presence than mixtures with coarse aggregates. The porous asphalt with coarse aggregates have more air voids which allow water to pass easily leading to ITSR higher values. In the permeability test was observed that asphalt porous without cellulosic fibres presented had lower permeability than asphalt porous with cellulosic fibres. The resistance to permanent deformation results indicates better behaviour of porous asphalt with cellulosic fibres, verifying a bigger rut depth in porous asphalt without cellulosic fibres. In this study, it was observed that porous asphalt with bitumen higher percentages improve the performance to permanent deformation. This fact was only possible due to the bitumen retention by the cellulosic fibres.

Keywords: binder drainage, cellulosic fibres, permanent deformation, porous asphalt

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7 Rt-Pcr Negative COVID-19 Infection in a Bodybuilding Competitor Using Anabolic Steroids: A Case Report

Authors: Mariana Branco, Nahida Sobrino, Cristina Neves, Márcia Santos, Afonso Granja, João Rosa Oliveira, Joana Costa, Luísa Castro Leite


This case reports a COVID-19 infection in an unvaccinated adult man with no history of COVID-19 and no relevant clinical history besides anabolic steroid use, undergoing weaning with tamoxifen after a bodybuilding competition. The patient presented a 4cm cervical mass 3 weeks after COVID-19 infection in his cohabitants. He was otherwise asymptomatic and tested negative to multiple RT-PCR tests. Nevertheless, the IgG COVID-19 antibody was positive, suggesting the previous infection. This report raises a potential link between anabolic steroid use and atypical COVID-19 onset. Objectives: The goals of this paper are to raise a potential link between anabolic steroid use and atypical COVID-19 onset but also to report an uncommon case of COVID-19 infection with consecutive negative gold standard tests. Methodology: The authors used CARE guidelines for case report writing. Introduction: This case reports a COVID-19 infection case in an unvaccinated adult man, with multiple serial negative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test results, presenting with single cervical lymphadenopathy. Although the association between COVID-19 and lymphadenopathy is well established, there are no cases with this presentation, and consistently negative RT-PCR tests have been reported. Methodologies: The authors used CARE guidelines for case report writing. Case presentation: This case reports a 28-year-old Caucasian man with no previous history of COVID-19 infection or vaccination and no relevant clinical history besides anabolic steroid use undergoing weaning with tamoxifendue to participation in a bodybuilding competition. He visits his primary care physician because of a large (4 cm) cervical lump, present for 3 days prior to the consultation. There was a positive family history for COVID-19 infection 3 weeks prior to the visit, during which the patient cohabited with the infected family members. The patient never had any previous clinical manifestation of COVID-19 infection and, despite multiple consecutive RT-PCR testing, never tested positive. The patient was treated with an NSAID and a broad-spectrum antibiotic, with little to no effect. Imagiological testing was performed via a cervical ultrasound, followed by a needle biopsy for histologic analysis. Serologic testing for COVID-19 immunity was conducted, revealing a positive Anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG (Spike S1) antibody, suggesting the previous infection, given the unvaccinated status of our patient Conclusion: In patients with a positive epidemiologic context and cervical lymphadenopathy, physicians should still consider COVID-19 infection as a differential diagnosis, despite negative PCR testing. This case also raises a potential link between anabolic steroid use and atypical COVID-19 onset, never before reported in scientific literature.

Keywords: COVID-19, cervical lymphadenopathy, anabolic steroids, primary care

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6 Negative Changes in Sexual Behavior of Pregnant Women

Authors: Glauberto S. Quirino, Emanuelly V. Pereira, Amana S. Figueiredo, Antonia T. F. Santos, Paulo R. A. Firmino, Denise F. F. Barbosa, Caroline B. Q. Aquino, Eveliny S. Martins, Cinthia G. P. Calou, Ana K. B. Pinheiro


Introduction: During pregnancy there are adjustments in the physical, emotional, existential and sexual areas, which may contribute to changes in sexual behavior. The objective was to analyze the sexual behavior of pregnant women. Methods: Quantitative, exploratory-descriptive study, approved by the Ethics and Research Committee of the Regional University of Cariri. For data collection, it was used the Sexuality Questionnaire in Gestation and Sexual Quotient - Female Version. It was carried out in public institutions in the urban and rural areas of three municipalities of the Metropolitan Region of Cariri, south of Ceará, Brazil from February to September 2016. The sampling was proportional stratified by convenience. A total of 815 pregnant women who were literate and aged 20 years or over were broached. 461 pregnant women were excluded because of high risk, adolescence, saturation of the extract, incomplete filling of the instrument, mental and physical handicap, without sexual partner, and the sample was 354 pregnant. The data were grouped, organized and analyzed in the statistical program R Studio (version 386 3.2.4). Descriptive frequency statistics and non-parametric tests were used to analyze the variables, and the results were shown in graphs and tables. Results: The women presented a minimum age of 20, maximum 35 and average of 26.9 years, predominantly urban area residents, with a monthly income of up to one minimum wage (US$ 275,00), high school, catholic, with fixed partner, heterosexuals, multiparous, multiple sexual partners throughout life and with the beginning of sexual life in adolescence (median age 17 years). There was a reduction in sexual practices (67%) and when they were performed, they were more frequent in the first trimester (79.7%) and less frequent in the third trimester (30.5%). Preliminary sexual practices did not change and were more frequent in the second trimester (46.6%). Throughout the gestational trimesters, the partner was referred as the main responsible for the sexual initiative. The women performed vaginal sex (97.7%) and provided greater pleasure (42.8%) compared to non-penetrative sex (53.9%) (oral sex and masturbation). There was also a reduction in the sexual disposition of pregnant women (90.7%) and partner (72.9%), mainly in the first trimester (78.8%), and sexual positions. Sexual performance ranged from regular to good (49.7%). Level of schooling, marital status, sexual orientation of the pregnant woman and the partner, sexual practices and positions, preliminaries, frequency of sexual practices and importance attributed to them were variables that influenced negatively sexual performance and satisfaction. It is concluded that pregnancy negatively changes the sexual behavior of the women and it is suggested to further investigations and approach of the partner, in order to clarify the influence of these variables on the sexual function and subsidize intervention strategies, with a view to the integrality of sexual and reproductive health.

Keywords: obstetric nursing, pregnant women, sexual behavior, women's health

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5 Association between Obstetric Factors with Affected Areas of Health-Related Quality of Life of Pregnant Women

Authors: Cinthia G. P. Calou, Franz J. Antezana, Ana I. O. Nicolau, Eveliny S. Martins, Paula R. A. L. Soares, Glauberto S. Quirino, Dayanne R. Oliveira, Priscila S. Aquino, Régia C. M. B. Castro, Ana K. B. Pinheiro


Introduction: As an integral part of the health-disease process, gestation is a period in which the social insertion of women can influence, in a positive or negative way, the course of the pregnancy-puerperal cycle. Thus, evaluating the quality of life of this population can redirect the implementation of innovative practices in the quest to make them more effective and real for the promotion of a more humanized care. This study explores the associations between the obstetric factors with affected areas of health-related quality of life of pregnant women with habitual risk. Methods: This is a cross-sectional, quantitative study conducted in three public facilities and a private service that provides prenatal care in the city of Fortaleza, Ceara, Brazil. The sample consisted of 261 pregnant women who underwent low-risk prenatal care and were interviewed from September to November 2014. The collection instruments were a questionnaire containing socio-demographic and obstetric variables, in addition to the Brazilian version of the Mother scale Generated Index (MGI) characterized by being a specific and objective instrument, consisting of a single sheet and subdivided into three stages. It allows identifying the areas of life of the pregnant woman that are most affected, which could go unnoticed by the pre-formulated measurement instruments. The obstetric data, as well as the data concerning the application of the MGI scale, were compiled and analyzed through the statistical program Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS), version 20.0. After the compilation, a descriptive analysis was carried out. Then, associations were made between some variables. The tests applied were the Pearson Chi-Square and the Fisher's exact test. The odds ratio was also calculated. These associations were considered statistically significant when the p (probability) value was less than or equal to a level of 5% (α = 0.05) in the tests performed. Results: The variables that negatively reflected the quality of life of the pregnant women and presented a significant association with the polaciuria were: gestational age (p = 0.022) and parity (p = 0.048). Episodes of nausea and vomiting also showed significant with gestational age correlation (p = 0.0001). Evaluating the crossing of stress, we observed a significant association with parity (p = 0.0001). In turn, emotional lability revealed dependence on the variable type of delivery (p = 0.009). Conclusion: The health professionals involved in the assistance to the pregnant woman can understand how the process of gestation is experienced, considering all its peculiar transformations; to meet their individual needs, stimulating their autonomy and their power of choice, envisaging the achievement of a better quality of life related to health in the perspective of health promotion.

Keywords: health-related quality of life, obstetric nursing, pregnant women, prenatal care

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4 Permeable Asphalt Pavement as a Measure of Urban Green Infrastructure in the Extreme Events Mitigation

Authors: Márcia Afonso, Cristina Fael, Marisa Dinis-Almeida


Population growth in cities has led to an increase in the infrastructures construction, including buildings and roadways. This aspect leads directly to the soils waterproofing. In turn, changes in precipitation patterns are developing into higher and more frequent intensities. Thus, these two conjugated aspects decrease the rainwater infiltration into soils and increase the volume of surface runoff. The practice of green and sustainable urban solutions has encouraged research in these areas. The porous asphalt pavement, as a green infrastructure, is part of practical solutions set to address urban challenges related to land use and adaptation to climate change. In this field, permeable pavements with porous asphalt mixtures (PA) have several advantages in terms of reducing the runoff generated by the floods. The porous structure of these pavements, compared to a conventional asphalt pavement, allows the rainwater infiltration in the subsoil, and consequently, the water quality improvement. This green infrastructure solution can be applied in cities, particularly in streets or parking lots to mitigate the floods effects. Over the years, the pores of these pavements can be filled by sediment, reducing their function in the rainwater infiltration. Thus, double layer porous asphalt (DLPA) was developed to mitigate the clogging effect and facilitate the water infiltration into the lower layers. This study intends to deepen the knowledge of the performance of DLPA when subjected to clogging. The experimental methodology consisted on four evaluation phases of the DLPA infiltration capacity submitted to three precipitation events (100, 200 and 300 mm/h) in each phase. The evaluation first phase determined the behavior after DLPA construction. In phases two and three, two 500 g/m2 clogging cycles were performed, totaling a 1000 g/m2 final simulation. Sand with gradation accented in fine particles was used as clogging material. In the last phase, the DLPA was subjected to simple sweeping and vacuuming maintenance. A precipitation simulator, type sprinkler, capable of simulating the real precipitation was developed for this purpose. The main conclusions show that the DLPA has the capacity to drain the water, even after two clogging cycles. The infiltration results of flows lead to an efficient performance of the DPLA in the surface runoff attenuation, since this was not observed in any of the evaluation phases, even at intensities of 200 and 300 mm/h, simulating intense precipitation events. The infiltration capacity under clogging conditions decreased about 7% on average in the three intensities relative to the initial performance that is after construction. However, this was restored when subjected to simple maintenance, recovering the DLPA hydraulic functionality. In summary, the study proved the efficacy of using a DLPA when it retains thicker surface sediments and limits the fine sediments entry to the remaining layers. At the same time, it is guaranteed the rainwater infiltration and the surface runoff reduction and is therefore a viable solution to put into practice in permeable pavements.

Keywords: clogging, double layer porous asphalt, infiltration capacity, rainfall intensity

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3 The Effectiveness of Insider Mediation for Sustainable Peace: A Case Study in Mindanao, the Philippines

Authors: Miyoko Taniguchi


Conflict and violence have prevailed over the last four decades in conflict-affected areas in Muslim Mindanao, despite the signing of several peace agreements between the Philippine government and Islamic separatist insurgents (the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF)), and peacebuilding activities on the ground. In the meantime, the peace talks had been facilitated and mediated by international actors such as the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and its member countries such as Indonesia, and Malaysia, and Japan. In 2014, both the Government of the Philippines (GPH) and the MILF finally reached a Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CAB) in 2014 under the Aquino III administration, though a Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) based on the CAB was not enacted at the Catholic-majority of the Philippine Congress. After a long process of deliberations at the Congress, Republic Act 11054, known as the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL), was enacted in 2018 under the Duterate administration. In the beginning, President Duterte adopted an 'inclusive approach' that involves the MILF, all factions of the MNLF, non-Islamized indigenous peoples, and other influential clan leaders to align all peace processes under a single Bangsamoro peace process. A notable difference from past administrations, there is an explicit recognition of all agreements and legislations based on the rights of each stakeholder. This created a new identity as 'Bangsamoro', the residents of Muslim Mindanao, enhancing political legitimacy. Besides, it should be noted an important role of 'insider mediators' -a platform for the Bangsamoro from diverse sectors attempting to work within their respective organizations in Moro society. Give the above background, this paper aims at probing the effectiveness of insider mediation as one of the alternative approaches for mediation in the peace process. For the objectives, this research uses qualitative methods such as process-tracing and semi-structured interviews from diverse groups of stakeholders at from the state to the regional level, including the government officials involved in peace process under the Presidential Office, rebels (MILF and MNLF), civil society organizations involved in lobbying and facilitating peace process, especially in the legislative process. The key outcomes and findings are that the Insider Mediators Group, formed in 2016, had taken on a significant role in facilitating the achievement of a wider consensus among stakeholders on major Moro issues such as BBL’s passing during the last administration to call for unity among the Bangsamoro. Most of its members are well-educated professionals affiliated with the MILF, the MNLF, and influential clans. One of the group’s biggest achievements has been the lobbying and provision of legal advice to legislators who were not necessarily knowledgeable about the peace process during the deliberation of the bicameral conference of the BBL, which eventually led to its passage. It can be concluded that in the long run, strengthening vertical and horizontal relations between the Moro society and the State and among the Moro peoples that can be viewed as a means to sustainable peace.

Keywords: insider mediation, Mindanao, peace process, Moro Islamic liberation front

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