Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 166

Search results for: Azaka Onyemazuwa Andrew

166 Characterization of Biodiesel Produced from Cow-Tallow

Authors: Nwadike Emmanuel Chinagoron, Achebe Chukwunonso, Ezeliora Chukwuemeka Daniel, Azaka Onyemazuwa Andrew

Abstract:

In this research work, the process of biodiesel production in a pilot plant was studied using cow tallow as raw material, methanol as the solvent and potassium hydroxide as catalysts. The biodiesel quality was determined by characterization. The tallow used in the production had a molecular weight of 860g. Its oil had a density value of 0.8g/ml, iodine value of 63.45, viscosity at 300C was 9.83pas, acid value was 1.96, free fatty acid (FFA) of 0.98%, saponification value of 82.75mleq/kg, specific gravity of 0.898, flash point of 1100C, cloud point of 950C and Calorific value also called Higher Heating Value (HHV) of 38.365MJ/Kg. The produced biodiesel had a density of 0.82g/ml, iodine value of 126.9, viscosity of 4.32pas at 300C, acid value of 0.561, FFA of 0.2805%, saponification value of 137.45 mleq/kg.Flash point, cloud point and centane number of the biodiesel produced are 1390C, 980C and 57.5 respectively, with fat content, protein content, ash content, moisture content, fiber content and carbohydrate content values of 10%, 2.8%, 5%, 5%, 20%, and 37.2% respectively. The biodiesel higher heating values (calorific values) when estimated from viscosity, density and flash points were 41.4MJ/Kg, 63.8MJ/Kg, and 34.6MJ/Kg respectively. The biodiesel was blended with conventional diesel. The blend B-10 had values of 1320C and 960C for flash and cloud points, with Calorific value (or HHV) of 34.6 MJ/Kg (when estimated from its Flash point) and fat content, protein content, ash content, moisture content, fiber content and carbohydrate content values of 5%, 2.1%,10%, 5%, 15%, and 62.9% respectively.

Keywords: biodiesel, characterization, cow-tallow, cetane rating

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165 Primary Cryptococcal Pneumonia in an HIV Positive Filipino Patient

Authors: Mark Andrew Tu, Raymond Olazo, Cybele Abad

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Cryptococcosis is an invasive infection most commonly found in patients who are immuno compromised. However, patients with this infection usually present with meningitis and rarely pulmonary infection in isolation. We present a case of a Filipino HIV patient who developed cryptococcal pneumonia without meningitis.

Keywords: Cryptococcal Pneumonia, HIV, Filipino, immune system

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164 Predicting College Students’ Happiness During COVID-19 Pandemic; Be optimistic and Well in College!

Authors: Michiko Iwasaki, Jane M. Endres, Julia Y. Richards, Andrew Futterman

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The present study aimed to examine college students’ happiness during COVID19-pandemic. Using the online survey data from 96 college students in the U.S., a regression analysis was conducted to predict college students’ happiness. The results indicated that a four-predictor model (optimism, college students’ subjective wellbeing, coronavirus stress, and spirituality) explained 57.9% of the variance in student’s subjective happiness, F(4,77)=26.428, p<.001, R2=.579, 95% CI [.41,.66]. The study suggests the importance of learned optimism among college students.

Keywords: COVID-19, optimism, spirituality, well-being

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163 Using Mixed Methods in Studying Classroom Social Network Dynamics

Authors: Nashrawan Naser Taha, Andrew M. Cox

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In a multi-cultural learning context, where ties are weak and dynamic, combining qualitative with quantitative research methods may be more effective. Such a combination may also allow us to answer different types of question, such as about people’s perception of the network. In this study the use of observation, interviews and photos were explored as ways of enhancing data from social network questionnaires. Integrating all of these methods was found to enhance the quality of data collected and its accuracy, also providing a richer story of the network dynamics and the factors that shaped these changes over time.

Keywords: mixed methods, social network analysis, multi-cultural learning, social network dynamics

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162 Particle Size Distribution Estimation of a Mixture of Regular and Irregular Sized Particles Using Acoustic Emissions

Authors: Ejay Nsugbe, Andrew Starr, Ian Jennions, Cristobal Ruiz-Carcel

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This works investigates the possibility of using Acoustic Emissions (AE) to estimate the Particle Size Distribution (PSD) of a mixture of particles that comprise of particles of different densities and geometry. The experiments carried out involved the mixture of a set of glass and polyethylene particles that ranged from 150-212 microns and 150-250 microns respectively and an experimental rig that allowed the free fall of a continuous stream of particles on a target plate which the AE sensor was placed. By using a time domain based multiple threshold method, it was observed that the PSD of the particles in the mixture could be estimated.

Keywords: acoustic emissions, particle sizing, process monitoring, signal processing

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161 Condition Monitoring of Railway Earthworks using Distributed Rayleigh Sensing

Authors: Andrew Hall, Paul Clarkson

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Climate change is predicted to increase the number of extreme weather events intensifying the strain on Railway Earthworks. This paper describes the use of Distributed Rayleigh Sensing to monitor low frequency activity on a vulnerable earthworks sectionprone to landslides alongside a railway line in Northern Spain. The vulnerable slope is instrumented with conventional slope stability sensors allowing an assessment to be conducted of the application of Distributed Rayleigh Sensing as an earthwork condition monitoring tool to enhance the resilience of railway networks.

Keywords: condition monitoring, railway earthworks, distributed rayleigh sensing, climate change

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160 Requirements Gathering for Improved Software Usability and the Potential for Usage-Centred Design

Authors: Kholod J. Alotaibi, Andrew M. Gravell

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Usability is an important software quality that is often neglected at the design stage. Although methods exist to incorporate elements of usability engineering, there is a need for more balanced usability focused methods that can enhance the experience of software usability for users. In this regard, the potential for Usage-Centered Design is explored with respect to requirements gathering and is shown to lead to high software usability besides other benefits. It achieves this through its focus on usage, defining essential use cases, by conducting task modeling, encouraging user collaboration, refining requirements, and so on. The requirements gathering process in UgCD is described in detail.

Keywords: requirements gathering, usability, usage-centred design, computer science

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159 The Need for the Utilization of Instructional Materials on the Teaching and Learning of Agricultural Science Education in Developing Countries

Authors: Ogoh Andrew Enokela

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This paper dwelt on the need for the utilization of instructional materials with highlights on the type of instructional materials, selection, uses and their importance on the learning and teaching of Agricultural Science Education in developing countries. It further discussed the concept of improvisation with some recommendation in terms of availability, utilization on the teaching and learning of Agricultural Science Education.

Keywords: instructional materials, agricultural science education, improvisation, teaching and learning

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158 The Lexicographic Serial Rule

Authors: Thi Thao Nguyen, Andrew McLennan, Shino Takayama

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We study the probabilistic allocation of finitely many indivisible objects to finitely many agents. Well known allocation rules for this problem include random priority, the market mechanism proposed by Hylland and Zeckhauser [1979], and the probabilistic serial rule of Bogomolnaia and Moulin [2001]. We propose a new allocation rule, which we call the lexico-graphic (serial) rule, that is tailored for situations in which each agent's primary concern is to maximize the probability of receiving her favourite object. Three axioms, lex efficiency, lex envy freeness and fairness, are proposed and fully characterize the lexicographic serial rule. We also discuss how our axioms and the lexicographic rule are related to other allocation rules, particularly the probabilistic serial rule.

Keywords: Efficiency, Envy free, Lexicographic, Probabilistic Serial Rule

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157 A Bundled Approach to Explaining Technological Change: The Case of E-Estonia

Authors: Andrew Adjah Sai, Portia Opoku Boadi

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Explaining change is an abstract endeavor. Many management scholars have adopted metaphors to explain change. In this paper, we deal with the drivers of technological change. We use a historical and theoretical approach to review and elaborate on the concepts and context about a specific case. We discuss the limitations of each approach proffered and the implications as a consequence on technological change. We present plurality and multiplicity of perspectives using a socio-technical approach to explain technological change contextually on an organizational level. We show by using our model how technology absorption and diffusion can be accelerated through artefactual institutions to enable social change. The multiplicity of perspectives and plurality of our arguments creates a fine explanation of the e-Estonia case as an example.

Keywords: artefactual institutions, e-Estonia, social change, technological trajectories

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156 An Enhanced Digital Forensic Model for Internet of Things Forensic

Authors: Tina Wu, Andrew Martin

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The expansion of the Internet of Things (IoT) brings a new level of threat. Attacks on IoT are already being used by criminals to form botnets, launch Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) and distribute malware. This opens a whole new digital forensic arena to develop forensic methodologies in order to have the capability to investigate IoT related crimes. However, existing proposed IoT forensic models are still premature requiring further improvement and validation, many lack details on the acquisition and analysis phase. This paper proposes an enhanced theoretical IoT digital forensic model focused on identifying and acquiring the main sources of evidence in a methodical way. In addition, this paper presents a theoretical acquisition framework of the different stages required in order to be capable of acquiring evidence from IoT devices.

Keywords: acquisition, Internet of Things, model, zoning

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155 Effects of Reversible Watermarking on Iris Recognition Performance

Authors: Andrew Lock, Alastair Allen

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Fragile watermarking has been proposed as a means of adding additional security or functionality to biometric systems, particularly for authentication and tamper detection. In this paper we describe an experimental study on the effect of watermarking iris images with a particular class of fragile algorithm, reversible algorithms, and the ability to correctly perform iris recognition. We investigate two scenarios, matching watermarked images to unmodified images, and matching watermarked images to watermarked images. We show that different watermarking schemes give very different results for a given capacity, highlighting the importance of investigation. At high embedding rates most algorithms cause significant reduction in recognition performance. However, in many cases, for low embedding rates, recognition accuracy is improved by the watermarking process.

Keywords: biometrics, iris recognition, reversible watermarking, vision engineering

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154 Artificial Intelligence Based Meme Generation Technology for Engaging Audience in Social Media

Authors: Andrew Kurochkin, Kostiantyn Bokhan

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In this study, a new meme dataset of ~650K meme instances was created, a technology of meme generation based on the state of the art deep learning technique - GPT-2 model was researched, a comparative analysis of machine-generated memes and human-created was conducted. We justified that Amazon Mechanical Turk workers can be used for the approximate estimating of users' behavior in a social network, more precisely to measure engagement. It was shown that generated memes cause the same engagement as human memes that produced low engagement in the social network (historically). Thus, generated memes are less engaging than random memes created by humans.

Keywords: content generation, computational social science, memes generation, Reddit, social networks, social media interaction

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153 Lithium-Ion Battery State of Charge Estimation Using One State Hysteresis Model with Nonlinear Estimation Strategies

Authors: Mohammed Farag, Mina Attari, S. Andrew Gadsden, Saeid R. Habibi

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Battery state of charge (SOC) estimation is an important parameter as it measures the total amount of electrical energy stored at a current time. The SOC percentage acts as a fuel gauge if it is compared with a conventional vehicle. Estimating the SOC is, therefore, essential for monitoring the amount of useful life remaining in the battery system. This paper looks at the implementation of three nonlinear estimation strategies for Li-Ion battery SOC estimation. One of the most common behavioral battery models is the one state hysteresis (OSH) model. The extended Kalman filter (EKF), the smooth variable structure filter (SVSF), and the time-varying smoothing boundary layer SVSF are applied on this model, and the results are compared.

Keywords: state of charge estimation, battery modeling, one-state hysteresis, filtering and estimation

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152 The Design, Development, and Optimization of a Capacitive Pressure Sensor Utilizing an Existing 9DOF Platform

Authors: Andrew Randles, Ilker Ocak, Cheam Daw Don, Navab Singh, Alex Gu

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Nine Degrees of Freedom (9 DOF) systems are already in development in many areas. In this paper, an integrated pressure sensor is proposed that will make use of an already existing monolithic 9 DOF inertial MEMS platform. Capacitive pressure sensors can suffer from limited sensitivity for a given size of membrane. This novel pressure sensor design increases the sensitivity by over 5 times compared to a traditional array of square diaphragms while still fitting within a 2 mm x 2 mm chip and maintaining a fixed static capacitance. The improved design uses one large diaphragm supported by pillars with fixed electrodes placed above the areas of maximum deflection. The design optimization increases the sensitivity from 0.22 fF/kPa to 1.16 fF/kPa. Temperature sensitivity was also examined through simulation.

Keywords: capacitive pressure sensor, 9 DOF, 10 DOF, sensor, capacitive, inertial measurement unit, IMU, inertial navigation system, INS

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151 The Use of Drones in Measuring Environmental Impacts of the Forest Garden Approach

Authors: Andrew J. Zacharias

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The forest garden approach (FGA) was established by Trees for the Future (TREES) over the organization’s 30 years of agroforestry projects in Sub-Saharan Africa. This method transforms traditional agricultural systems into highly managed gardens that produce food and marketable products year-round. The effects of the FGA on food security, dietary diversity, and economic resilience have been measured closely, and TREES has begun to closely monitor the environmental impacts through the use of sensors mounted on unmanned aerial vehicles, commonly known as 'drones'. These drones collect thousands of pictures to create 3-D models in both the visible and the near-infrared wavelengths. Analysis of these models provides TREES with quantitative and qualitative evidence of improvements to the annual above-ground biomass and leaf area indices, as measured in-situ using NDVI calculations.

Keywords: agroforestry, biomass, drones, NDVI

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150 A Method to Enhance the Accuracy of Digital Forensic in the Absence of Sufficient Evidence in Saudi Arabia

Authors: Fahad Alanazi, Andrew Jones

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Digital forensics seeks to achieve the successful investigation of digital crimes through obtaining acceptable evidence from digital devices that can be presented in a court of law. Thus, the digital forensics investigation is normally performed through a number of phases in order to achieve the required level of accuracy in the investigation processes. Since 1984 there have been a number of models and frameworks developed to support the digital investigation processes. In this paper, we review a number of the investigation processes that have been produced throughout the years and introduce a proposed digital forensic model which is based on the scope of the Saudi Arabia investigation process. The proposed model has been integrated with existing models for the investigation processes and produced a new phase to deal with a situation where there is initially insufficient evidence.

Keywords: digital forensics, process, metadata, Traceback, Sauid Arabia

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149 On the Impracticality of Kierkegaard's Community of Authentic Individuals

Authors: Andrew Ka Pok Tam

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Kierkegaard has been misinterpreted as an anti-social philosopher for a long time until in recent years when there are more discussions on his concept of community in Journals and Papers inspired by Karl Bayer. Community which is based upon an individual's relations to others is different from the crowd or the public where the numerical or the majority make decisions. As a result, authenticity is only possible in the community. But Kierkegaard did not explain how we can preserve the individual's authenticity by establishing a community instead of a public in the reality. Kierkegaard was against the democratic reform in 1848 Denmark because he thought all elections mean the majority wins and the authenticity of a single individual would be suppressed. However, Kierkegaard himself does not suggest an alternative political system that may preserve the authenticity of individual. This paper aims to evaluate the possibility for us to establish a Kierkegaadian community in practice so as to preserve every individual's authenticity. This paper argues that the practicality of Kierekegaadian community is limited. In order to have effective communications and relations among individuals, a Kierkegaardian community must be small and inefficient as every individual's must remain authentic in all political decision for the whole community.

Keywords: authenticity, community, individual, kierkegaard

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148 Light-Scattering Characteristics of Ordered Arrays Nobel Metal Nanoparticles

Authors: Yassine Ait-El-Aoud, Michael Okomoto, Andrew M. Luce, Alkim Akyurtlu, Richard M. Osgood III

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Light scattering of metal nanoparticles (NPs) has a unique, and technologically important effect on enhancing light absorption in substrates because most of the light scatters into the substrate near the localized plasmon resonance of the NPs. The optical response, such as the resonant frequency and forward- and backward-scattering, can be tuned to trap light over a certain spectral region by adjusting the nanoparticle material size, shape, aggregation state, Metallic vs. insulating state, as well as local environmental conditions. In this work, we examined the light scattering characteristics of ordered arrays of metal nanoparticles and the light trapping, in order to enhance absorption, by measuring the forward- and backward-scattering using a UV/VIS/NIR spectrophotometer. Samples were fabricated using the popular self-assembly process method: dip coating, combined with nanosphere lithography.

Keywords: dip coating, light-scattering, metal nanoparticles, nanosphere lithography

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147 Identification of Force Vector on an Elastic Solid Using an Embeded PVDF Senor Array

Authors: Andrew Youssef, David Matthews, Jie Pan

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Identifying the magnitude and direction of a force on an elastic solid is highly desirable, as this allows for investigation and continual monitoring of the dynamic loading. This was traditionally conducted by connecting the solid to the supporting structure by multi-axial force transducer, providing that the transducer will not change the mounting conditions. Polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) film is a versatile force transducer that can be easily embedded in structures. Here a PVDF sensor array is embedded inside a simple structure in an effort to determine the force vector applied to the structure is an inverse problem. In this paper, forces of different magnitudes and directions where applied to the structure with an impact hammer, and the output of the PVDF was captured and processed to gain an estimate of the forces applied by the hammer. The outcome extends the scope of application of PVDF sensors for measuring the external or contact force vectors.

Keywords: embedded sensor, monitoring, PVDF, vibration

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146 A Numerical Study on the Connection of an SC Wall to an RC Foundation

Authors: Siamak Epackachi, Andrew S. Whittaker, Amit H. Varma

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There are a large number of methods to connect SC walls to RC foundations. An experimental study of the cyclic nonlinear behavior of SC walls in the NEES laboratory at the University at Buffalo used a connection detail involving the post-tensioning of a steel baseplate to the SC wall to a RC foundation. This type of connection introduces flexibility that influenced substantially the global response of the SC walls. The assumption of a rigid base, which would be commonly made by practitioners, would lead to a substantial overestimation of initial stiffness. This paper presents an analytical approach to characterize the rotational flexibility and to predict the initial stiffness of flexure-critical SC wall piers with baseplate connection. The good agreement between the analytical and test results confirmed the utility of the proposed method for calculating the initial stiffness of an SC wall with baseplate connection.

Keywords: steel-plate composite shear wall, flexure-critical wall, cyclic loading, analytical model

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145 Bayesian Prospective Detection of Small Area Health Anomalies Using Kullback Leibler Divergence

Authors: Chawarat Rotejanaprasert, Andrew Lawson

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Early detection of unusual health events depends on the ability to detect rapidly any substantial changes in disease, thus facilitating timely public health interventions. To assist public health practitioners to make decisions, statistical methods are adopted to assess unusual events in real time. We introduce a surveillance Kullback-Leibler (SKL) measure for timely detection of disease outbreaks for small area health data. The detection methods are compared with the surveillance conditional predictive ordinate (SCPO) within the framework of Bayesian hierarchical Poisson modeling and applied to a case study of a group of respiratory system diseases observed weekly in South Carolina counties. Properties of the proposed surveillance techniques including timeliness and detection precision are investigated using a simulation study.

Keywords: Bayesian, spatial, temporal, surveillance, prospective

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144 A Study of Human Communication in an Internet Community

Authors: Andrew Laghos

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The Internet is a big part of our everyday lives. People can now access the internet from a variety of places including home, college, and work. Many airports, hotels, restaurants and cafeterias, provide free wireless internet to their visitors. Using technologies like computers, tablets, and mobile phones, we spend a lot of our time online getting entertained, getting informed, and communicating with each other. This study deals with the latter part, namely, human communication through the Internet. People can communicate with each other using social media, social network sites (SNS), e-mail, messengers, chatrooms, and so on. By connecting with each other they form virtual communities. Regarding SNS, types of connections that can be studied include friendships and cliques. Analyzing these connections is important to help us understand online user behavior. The method of Social Network Analysis (SNA) was used on a case study, and results revealed the existence of some useful patterns of interactivity between the participants. The study ends with implications of the results and ideas for future research.

Keywords: human communication, internet communities, online user behavior, psychology

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143 Investigating the Accessibility of Physically Disabled Individuals in Corporate Offices: A Case of Dhaka City

Authors: Ishrar Tabassum, Jay Andrew Saptok, Khalid Raihan Kabir, Elmee Tabassum

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The purpose of this study is to bring light to the current state of the working environments in the corporate environment and other such institutions with a particular focus on the Bangladesh National Building Code (BNBC) and its guidelines for accommodating the physically disabled. Data were collected via semi-formal interviews, site visits and focus groups conducted using a preset questionnaire as the guidelines. After conducting surveys at corporate offices of 20 organizations from major commercial sectors in Dhaka city, the auditing showed many inadequacies, as aside from the larger corporate offices, the offices have little to no accessibility for the physically disabled. This study hopes to shed light on the fact that the existing BNBCs lack of emphasis on ensuring the accessibility of the handicapped in corporate buildings in the hope that, in the future, the physically disabled will have greater opportunities at being productive members of the workforce.

Keywords: person with disability, PWD, corporate buildings, Dhaka City

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142 Productivity, Labour Flexibility, and Migrant Workers in Hotels: An Establishment and Departmental Level Analysis

Authors: Natina Yaduma, Allan Williams, Sangwon Park, Andrew Lockwood

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This paper analyses flexible working, and the employment of migrants, as determinants of productivity in hotels. Controlling for the institutional environment, by focussing on a single firm, it analyses data on actual hours worked and outputs, on a weekly basis, over an 8 year period. The unusually disaggregated data allows the paper to examine not only inter-establishment, but also intra-establishment (departmental) variations in productivity, and to compare financial versus physical measures. The findings emphasise the complexity of productivity findings, sometimes contrasting evidence for establishments versus departments, and the positive but scale and measure-specific contributions of both the employment of migrants and flexible working, especially the utilisation of zero hours contracts.

Keywords: labour productivity, physical productivity, financial productivity, numerical flexibility, functional flexibility, migrant employment, cero-contract employment

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141 Deviations and Defects of the Sub-Task’s Requirements in Construction Projects

Authors: Abdullah Almusharraf, Andrew Whyte

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The sub-task pattern in terms of the deviations and defects should be identified and understand in order to improve the quality practices in construction projects. Therefore, the sub-task susceptibility to exposure to deviations and defects have been evaluated and classified via six classifications that have proposed in this study. 34 case studies on specific sub-task (from compression member in construction concrete structure) have been collected from seven construction projects in order to examined study’s classifications. The study revealed that the sub-task has high sensitive to deviation where (91%) of the cases recorded as deviations, however, only (19%) of cases recorded as defects. Another findings were that the actual work during the execution process has high source of deviation for this sub-task (74%) while only (26%) of the deviation source was due to both design documentations with the actual work. These findings significantly imply that it could be used the study’s classifications to determine the pattern of each sub-task and develop the proactive actions to overcome issues of the sub-task deviations and defects.

Keywords: sub-tasks, deviations, defects, quality, construction projects

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140 Teaching Vietnamese as the Official Language for Indigenous Preschool Children in Lai Chau, Vietnam: Exploring Teachers' Beliefs about Second Language Acquisition

Authors: Thao Thi Vu, Libby Lee-Hammond, Andrew McConney

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In Vietnam, the Vietnamese language is normally used as the language of instruction. The dominance of this language places children who have a different first language such as Indigenous children at a disadvantage when commencing school. This study explores preschool teachers’ beliefs about second language acquisition in Lai Chau provinces where is typical of highland provinces of Vietnam and the proportion of Indigenous minority groups in high. Data were collected from surveys with both closed-end questions and opened-end questions. The participants in this study were more than 200 public preschool teachers who come from eight different districts in Lai Chau. An analysis of quantitative data survey is presented to indicate several practical implications, such as the connection between teachers’ knowledge background that gained from their pre-service and in-service teacher education programs regarding second language teaching for Indigenous children and their practice. It also explains some factors that influence teachers’ beliefs and perspective about Indigenous children and pedagogies in their classes.

Keywords: indigenous children, learning Vietnamese, preschool, teachers’ beliefs

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139 Evaluation of Critical State Behavior of Granular Soil in Confined Compression Tests

Authors: Rabia Chaudhry, Andrew Dawson

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Identification of steady/critical state of coarse granular soil is challenging at conventional pressures. This study examines the drained and undrained triaxial tests for large strains on loose to dense, uniformly graded, Leighton Buzzard Fraction A sand. The triaxial tests are conducted under controlled test conditions. The comparison of soil behavior on shear strength characteristics at different effective stresses has been studied at the medium to large strains levels and the uniqueness of the critical state was discussed. The test results showed that there were two steady/critical state lines for drained and undrained conditions at confining pressures less than 1000 kPa. A critical state friction angle is not constant and the overall scatter in the steady/critical state line for the tested sand is ±0.01 in terms of void ratio at stress levels less than 1000 kPa.

Keywords: critical state, stress strain behavior, fabric/structure, triaxial tests

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138 Coordination Polymer Hydrogels Based on Coinage Metals and Nucleobase Derivatives

Authors: Lamia L. G. Al-Mahamad, Benjamin R. Horrocks, Andrew Houlton

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Hydrogels based on metal coordination polymers of nucleosides and a range of metal ions (Au, Ag, Cu) have been prepared and characterized by atomic force microscopy (AFM), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, ultraviolet-visible absorption spectroscopy, and powder X-ray diffraction. AFM images of the xerogels revealed the formation of extremely long polymer molecules (> 10 micrometers, the maximum scan range). This result is also consistent with TEM images which show a fibrous morphology. Oxidative doping of the Au-nucleoside fibres produces an electrically conductive nanowire. No sharp Bragg peaks were found at the at the X-ray diffraction pattern for metal ions hydrogels indicating that the samples were amorphous, but instead the data showed broad peaks in the range 20 < Q < 40 and correspond to distances d=2μ/Q. The data was analysed using a simplified Rietveld method by fitting a regression model to obtain the distance between atoms.

Keywords: hydrogel, metal ions, nanowire, nucleoside

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137 Degradation Model for UK Railway Drainage System

Authors: Yiqi Wu, Simon Tait, Andrew Nichols

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Management of UK railway drainage assets is challenging due to the large amounts of historical assets with long asset life cycles. A major concern for asset managers is to maintain the required performance economically and efficiently while complying with the relevant regulation and legislation. As the majority of the drainage assets are buried underground and are often difficult or costly to examine, it is important for asset managers to understand and model the degradation process in order to foresee the upcoming reduction in asset performance and conduct proactive maintenance accordingly. In this research, a Markov chain approach is used to model the deterioration process of rail drainage assets. The study is based on historical condition scores and characteristics of drainage assets across the whole railway network in England, Scotland, and Wales. The model is used to examine the effect of various characteristics on the probabilities of degradation, for example, the regional difference in probabilities of degradation, and how material and shape can influence the deterioration process for chambers, channels, and pipes.

Keywords: deterioration, degradation, markov models, probability, railway drainage

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