Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 50

Search results for: D. Rico Sierra

50 Geographic Differences in Access to HIV Prevention Services and Care among Sexual Minority Men in Puerto Rico

Authors: William Coburn, Dylan Hauchard, Amel Naouali


Background: The nature of the HIV epidemic in Puerto Rico (PR) is less understood than in the continental U.S. There is evidence to suggest that there are differences in health care access based on geographical location, such that rural areas are less underserved and have less immediate access to HIV prevention resources. Methods: The current study consists of a cross-sectional online survey of self-reporting HIV-negative sexual minority men (SMM) residing in PR. Results: In this sample, there were no differences between urban and rural-based services for SMM. However, more than half of the sample reported that they have never disclosed their gender identity and sexual practices to a physician. Conclusion: HIV is a significant public health concern affecting Latinos/Hispanics in the U.S. Findings in this paper can have implications for HIV prevention services in PR specifically, as few studies have directly focused on the impact of HIV and health care services in PR outside of the continental U.S.

Keywords: HIV, Puerto Rico, infectious diseases , public health

Procedia PDF Downloads 125
49 An Estimation of Rice Output Supply Response in Sierra Leone: A Nerlovian Model Approach

Authors: Alhaji M. H. Conteh, Xiangbin Yan, Issa Fofana, Brima Gegbe, Tamba I. Isaac


Rice grain is Sierra Leone’s staple food and the nation imports over 120,000 metric tons annually due to a shortfall in its cultivation. Thus, the insufficient level of the crop's cultivation in Sierra Leone is caused by many problems and this led to the endlessly widening supply and demand for the crop within the country. Consequently, this has instigated the government to spend huge money on the importation of this grain that would have been otherwise cultivated domestically at a cheaper cost. Hence, this research attempts to explore the response of rice supply with respect to its demand in Sierra Leone within the period 1980-2010. The Nerlovian adjustment model to the Sierra Leone rice data set within the period 1980-2010 was used. The estimated trend equations revealed that time had significant effect on output, productivity (yield) and area (acreage) of rice grain within the period 1980-2010 and this occurred generally at the 1% level of significance. The results showed that, almost the entire growth in output had the tendency to increase in the area cultivated to the crop. The time trend variable that was included for government policy intervention showed an insignificant effect on all the variables considered in this research. Therefore, both the short-run and long-run price response was inelastic since all their values were less than one. From the findings above, immediate actions that will lead to productivity growth in rice cultivation are required. To achieve the above, the responsible agencies should provide extension service schemes to farmers as well as motivating them on the adoption of modern rice varieties and technology in their rice cultivation ventures.

Keywords: Nerlovian adjustment model, price elasticities, Sierra Leone, trend equations

Procedia PDF Downloads 163
48 Cancer and Disability: A Psychosocial Approach in Puerto Rican Women as Cancer Survivors

Authors: Hector Jose Velazquez-Gonzalez, Norma Maldonado-Santiago, Laura Pietri-Gomez


Cancer is one of the first cause of death in the world, most of them are women. In Puerto Rico, there is a permanent controversy on the conceptuation of what really involves a disability, also in when a chronic illness, like cancer, should be considered a disability. The aim of the research was to identify functional limitation in 50 women survivors of cancer. In turn, to know the meanings that 6 women attributed to cancer with a focus on functionality. We conducted a mix method research based on surveys and narratives. We administered the World Health Organization Disability Assessment, version 2.0, which obtained a Cronbach’s alpha of .949 on the general scale, and from .773 to .956 on the six domains. The domain that obtained the highest average was social participation (M= 33.89, SD= 20.434), but it was not significant in the disability percentage. Also, there was no significance in the disability percentage in the other five domains. In a matter of meanings, we conduct a semistructured interview to 6 participants. All of them do not refer to cancer as a disability, either they do not know that in Puerto Rico cancer is considered as a disability by the law. However, participants agree that cancer at the time of treatment and subsequent to it, has significant effects on functional limitations (fatigue, pain, cognitive limitations, and weakness, among others. Psychooncologic practice should encourage the constant assessment of the functionality to identify the needs that emerge from oncological diagnosis. So that psychosocial intervention could be considered as critical in cancer treatment to promote a better quality of life and well-being in a person with cancer.

Keywords: cancer, Puerto Rico, disability, psychosocial approach

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47 Puerto Rico and Pittsburg: A Social Psychology Perspective on How Perceived Infringement on Job and Cultural Identity Unite Racially Different Working-Class Groups

Authors: Reagan Rodriguez


With a growing divide between political echo chambers in the United States, exacerbated by race and income inequality, it might seem to be unfathomable to draw connections that tie working class in an industrial city and a U.S. territory. Yet, in regions where either the economy has been hit due to dwindling job infrastructure or natural disasters have left indelible marks on an island already once marked by colonial imperialism, a larger social shared identity is at play. Fracking has long been an intergenerational and stable work opportunity for many in the Pittsburg PA, yet the rising severity of global climate change may soon impact the policy and even presidential elections which could result in the reduction of jobs in the industry. Cock-fighting, considered a cultural mainstay within the island of Puerto Rico, has already had legislation banning activity and thus cutting out one of the most lucrative aspects of a severely injured economy. Insecurity, infringement, and isolation while being tied to a working-class bracket with no other opportunities in proximity have left both groups expressing similar frustration and while another larger shared identity politic is giving little other options to develop social mobility. This paper utilizes a thematic analysis and compares convergent and divergent themes on internet forums amongst unionized fracking workers in Pittsburg and cockfighters in Puerto Rico. This research examines how group identity in relation to job and cultural identity is most strong and at which points its most malleable; when intergenerational job identity becomes a part of one’s cultural identity, its override may be strongest when it is perceived as threatened. Final findings and limitations were comprehensively outlined.

Keywords: identity threat, social psychology, group identity, culture and social mobility

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46 Use of Pheromones, Active Surveillance and Treated Cattle to Prevent the Establishment of the Tropical Bont Tick in Puerto Rico and the Americas

Authors: Robert Miller, Fred Soltero, Sandra Allan, Denise Bonilla


The Tropical Bont Tick (TBT), Amblyomma variegatum, was introduced to the Caribbean in the mid-1700s. Since it has spread throughout the Caribbean dispersed by cattle egrets (Bubulcus ibis). Tropical Bont Ticks vector many pathogens to livestock and humans. However, only the livestock diseases heartwater, Ehrlichia (Cowdria) ruminantium, and dermatophilosis, Dermatophilus congolensis, are associated with TBT in the Caribbean. African tick bite fever (Rickettsia africae) is widespread in Caribbean TBT but human cases are rare. The Caribbean Amblyomma Programme (CAP) was an effort led by the Food and Agricultural Organization to eradicate TBTs from participating islands. This 10-year effort successfully eradicated TBT from many islands. However, most are reinfested since its termination. Pheromone technology has been developed to aid in TBT control. Although not part of the CAP treatment scheme, this research established that pheromones in combination with pesticide greatly improves treatment efficiencies. Additionally, pheromone combined with CO₂ traps greatly improves active surveillance success. St. Croix has a history of TBT outbreaks. Passive surveillance detected outbreaks in 2016 and in May of 2021. Surveillance efforts are underway to determine the extent of TBT on St Croix. Puerto Rico is the next island in the archipelago and is at a greater risk of re-infestation due to active outbreaks in St Croix. Tropical Bont Ticks were last detected in Puerto Rico in the 1980s. The infestation started on the small Puerto Rican island of Vieques, the closest landmass to St Croix, and spread to the main island through cattle movements. This infestation was eradicated with the help of the Tropical Cattle Tick (TCT), Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus, eradication program. At the time, large percentages of Puerto Rican cattle were treated for ticks along with the necessary material and manpower mobilized for the effort. Therefore, a shift of focus from the TCT to TBT prevented its establishment in Puerto Rico. Currently, no large-scale treatment of TCTs occurs in Puerto Rico. Therefore, the risk of TBT establishment is now greater than it was in the 1980s. From Puerto Rico, the risk of TBT movement to the American continent increases significantly. The establishment of TBTs in the Americas would cause $1.2 billion USD in losses to the livestock industry per year. The USDA Agricultural Research Service recently worked with the USDA Animal Health Inspection Service and the Puerto Rican Department of Agriculture to modernize the management of the TCT. This modernized program uses safer pesticides and has successfully been used to eradicate pesticide-susceptible and -resistant ticks throughout the island. The objective of this work is to prevent the infestation of Puerto Rico by TBTs by combining the current TCT management efforts with TBT surveillance in Vieques. The combined effort is designed to eradicate TCT from Vieques while using the treated cattle as trap animals for TBT using pheromone impregnated tail tags attached to treated animals. Additionally, active surveillance using CO₂-baited traps combined with pheromone will be used to actively survey the environment for free-living TBT. Knowledge gained will inform TBT control efforts in St. Croix.

Keywords: Amblyomma variegatum, caribbean, eradication, Rhipicephalus (boophilus) microplus, pheromone

Procedia PDF Downloads 100
45 Beyond Voluntary Corporate Social Responsibility: Examining the Impact of the New Mandatory Community Development Agreement in the Mining Sector of Sierra Leone

Authors: Wusu Conteh


Since the 1990s, neo-liberalization has become a global agenda. The free market ushered in an unprecedented drive by Multinational Corporations (MNCs) to secure mineral rights in resource-rich countries. Several governments in the Global South implemented a liberalized mining policy with support from the International Financial Institutions (IFIs). MNCs have maintained that voluntary Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) has engendered socio-economic development in mining-affected communities. However, most resource-rich countries are struggling to transform the resources into sustainable socio-economic development. They are trapped in what has been widely described as the ‘resource curse.’ In an attempt to address this resource conundrum, the African Mining Vision (AMV) of 2009 developed a model on resource governance. The advent of the AMV has engendered the introduction of mandatory community development agreement (CDA) into the legal framework of many countries in Africa. In 2009, Sierra Leone enacted the Mines and Minerals Act that obligates mining companies to invest in Primary Host Communities. The study employs interviews and field observation techniques to explicate the dynamics of the CDA program. A total of 25 respondents -government officials, NGOs/CSOs and community stakeholders were interviewed. The study focuses on a case study of the Sierra Rutile CDA program in Sierra Leone. Extant scholarly works have extensively explored the resource curse and voluntary CSR. There are limited studies to uncover the mandatory CDA and its impact on socio-economic development in mining-affected communities. Thus, the purpose of this study is to explicate the impact of the CDA in Sierra Leone. Using the theory of change helps to understand how the availability of mandatory funds can empower communities to take an active part in decision making related to the development of the communities. The results show that the CDA has engendered a predictable fund for community development. It has also empowered ordinary members of the community to determine the development program. However, the CDA has created a new ground for contestations between the pre-existing local governance structure (traditional authority) and the newly created community development committee (CDC) that is headed by an ordinary member of the community.

Keywords: community development agreement, impact, mandatory, participation

Procedia PDF Downloads 39
44 Surface Modification of Titanium Alloy with Laser Treatment

Authors: Nassier A. Nassir, Robert Birch, D. Rico Sierra, S. P. Edwardson, G. Dearden, Zhongwei Guan


The effect of laser surface treatment parameters on the residual strength of titanium alloy has been investigated. The influence of the laser surface treatment on the bonding strength between the titanium and poly-ether-ketone-ketone (PEKK) surfaces was also evaluated and compared to those offered by titanium foils without surface treatment to optimize the laser parameters. Material characterization using an optical microscope was carried out to study the microstructure and to measure the mean roughness value of the titanium surface. The results showed that the surface roughness shows a significant dependency on the laser power parameters in which surface roughness increases with the laser power increment. Moreover, the results of the tensile tests have shown that there is no significant dropping in tensile strength for the treated samples comparing to the virgin ones. In order to optimize the laser parameter as well as the corresponding surface roughness, single-lap shear tests were conducted on pairs of the laser treated titanium stripes. The results showed that the bonding shear strength between titanium alloy and PEKK film increased with the surface roughness increment to a specific limit. After this point, it is interesting to note that there was no significant effect for the laser parameter on the bonding strength. This evidence suggests that it is not necessary to use very high power of laser to treat titanium surface to achieve a good bonding strength between titanium alloy and the PEKK film.

Keywords: bonding strength, laser surface treatment, PEKK, poly-ether-ketone-ketone, titanium alloy

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43 Determinants of Domestic Violence among Married Women Aged 15-49 Years in Sierra Leone by an Intimate Partner: A Cross-Sectional Study

Authors: Tesfaldet Mekonnen Estifanos, Chen Hui, Afewerki Weldezgi


Background: Intimate partner violence (hereafter IPV) is a major global public health challenge that tortures and disables women in the place where they are ought to be most secure within their own families. The fact that the family unit is commonly viewed as a private circle, violent acts towards women remains undermined. There are limited research and knowledge about the influencing factors linked to IPV in Sierra Leone. This study, therefore, estimates the prevalence rate and the predicting factors associated with IPV. Methods: Data were taken from Sierra-Leone Demographic and Health Survey (SDHS, 2013): the first in its form to incorporate information on domestic violence. Multistage cluster sampling research design was used, and information was gathered by a standard questionnaire. A total of 5185 respondents selected were interviewed, out of whom 870 were never been in union, thus excluded. To analyze the two dependent variables: experience of IPV, ‘ever’ and 'last 12 months prior to the survey', a total of 4315 (currently or formerly married) and 4029 women (currently in union) were included respectively. These dependent variables were constructed from the three forms of violence namely physical, emotional and sexual. Data analysis was applied using SPSS version 23, comprising three-step process. First, descriptive statistics were used to show the frequency distribution of both the outcome and explanatory variables. Second, bivariate analysis adopting chi-square test was applied to assess the individual relationship between the outcome and explanatory variables. Third, multivariate logistic regression analysis was undertaken using hierarchical modeling strategy to identify the influence of the explanatory variables on the outcome variables. Odds ratio (OR) and 95% confidence interval (CI) were utilized to examine the association of the variables considering p-values less than 0.05 statistically significant. Results: The prevalence of lifetime IPV among ever married women was 48.4%, while 39.8% of those currently married experienced IPV in the previous year preceding the survey. Women having 1 to 4 and more than 5 number of ever born babies were almost certain to encounter lifetime IPV. However, women who own a property, and those who referenced 3-5 reasons for which wife-beating is acceptable were less probably to experience lifetime IPV. Attesting parental violence, partner’s dominant marital behavior, and women afraid of their partner were the variables related to both experience of IPV ‘ever’ and ‘the previous year prior to the survey’. Respondents who concur that wife-beating is sensible in certain situations and occupations under the professional category had diminished chances of revealing IPV in the year prior to the data collection. Conclusion: This study indicated that factors significantly correlated with IPV in Sierra-Leone are mostly linked with husband related factors specifically, marital controlling behaviors. Addressing IPV in Sierra-Leone requires joint efforts that target men raise awareness to address controlling behavior and empower security in affiliations.

Keywords: husband behavior, married women, partner violence, Sierra Leone

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42 Public-Private Partnership for Community Empowerment and Sustainability: Exploring Save the Children’s 'School Me' Project in West Africa

Authors: Gae Hee Song


This paper aims to address the evolution of public-private partnerships for mainstreaming an evaluation approach in the community-based education project. It examines the distinctive features of Save the Children’s School Me project in terms of empowerment evaluation principles introduced by David M. Fetterman, especially community ownership, capacity building, and organizational learning. School Me is a Save the Children Korea funded-project, having been implemented in Cote d’Ivoire and Sierra Leone since 2016. The objective of this project is to reduce gender-based disparities in school completion and learning outcomes by creating an empowering learning environment for girls and boys. Both quasi-experimental and experimental methods for impact evaluation have been used to explore changes in learning outcomes, gender attitudes, and learning environments. To locate School Me in the public-private partnership framework for community empowerment and sustainability, the data have been collected from School Me progress/final reports, baseline, and endline reports, fieldwork observations, inter-rater reliability of baseline and endline data collected from a total of 75 schools in Cote d’Ivoire and Sierra Leone. The findings of this study show that School Me project has a significant evaluation component, including qualitative exploratory research, participatory monitoring, and impact evaluation. It strongly encourages key actors, girls, boys, parents, teachers, community leaders, and local education authorities, to participate in the collection and interpretation of data. For example, 45 community volunteers collected baseline data in Cote d’Ivoire; on the other hand, three local government officers and fourteen enumerators participated in the follow-up data collection of Sierra Leone. Not only does this public-private partnership improve local government and community members’ knowledge and skills of monitoring and evaluation, but the evaluative findings also help them find their own problems and solutions with a strong sense of community ownership. Such community empowerment enables Save the Children country offices and member offices to gain invaluable experiences and lessons learned. As a result, empowerment evaluation leads to community-oriented governance and the sustainability of the School Me project.

Keywords: community empowerment, Cote d’Ivoire, empowerment evaluation, public-private partnership, save the children, school me, Sierra Leone, sustainability

Procedia PDF Downloads 53
41 Rural Tourism as a Development Strategy in Communities of the Sierra Gorda of Querétaro

Authors: Eduardo Ruiz-Corzo, Luis Rodrigo Valencia Perez, Jorge Francisco Barragan Lopez


The article shows the pressing conditions of marginalization prevailing in the Sierra Gorda, in the northern state of Queretaro, so it is essential to identify business options that generate a complementary source of income in a sustainable manner, in accordance with the fact that the area is a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO. In this sense, the study identifies the enormous scenic richness of the area, the growing demand for leisure activities of the urban centers and the multifunctionality that adds, in a complementary way, the traditional activities that up to now have achieved the quality of life levels. From the application of the 43 interviews and 183 surveys, confirms the fact that the post-visit perception exceeds the expectations of the visitors emerges and affirms that the image that has been projected is attractive and timely. In order to understand how the current model of tourism promoted in the region is working, there is a need to evaluate it in a theoretical-methodological framework considering sustainable development assumptions. In order to determine the degree of contribution to business development, strengthening of social capital, and enjoyment and appreciation of cultural and natural heritage in the region.

Keywords: marginalization, rural tourism, multifunctionality, sustainability, revenue

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40 Using the Nerlovian Adjustment Model to Assess the Response of Farmers to Price and Other Related Factors: Evidence from Sierra Leone Rice Cultivation

Authors: Alhaji M. H. Conteh, Xiangbin Yan, Alfred V. Gborie


The goal of this study was to increase the awareness of the description and assessments of rice acreage response and to offer mechanisms for agricultural policy scrutiny. The Ordinary Least Square (OLS) technique was utilized to determine the coefficients of acreage response models for the rice varieties. The magnitudes of the coefficients (λ) of both the ROK lagged and NERICA lagged acreages were found positive and highly significant, which indicates that farmers’ adjustment rate was very low. Regarding lagged actual price for both the ROK and NERICE rice varieties, the short-run price elasticities were lower than long-run, which is suggesting a long-term adjustment of the acreage, is under the crop. However, the apparent recommendations for policy transformation are to open farm gate prices and to decrease government’s involvement in agricultural sector especially in the acquisition of agricultural inputs. Impending research have to be centred on how this might be better realized. Necessary conditions should be made available to the private sector by means of minimizing price volatility. In accordance with structural reforms, it is necessary to convey output prices to farmers with minimum distortion. There is a need to eradicate price subsidies and control, which generate distortion in the market in addition to huge financial costs.

Keywords: acreage response, rate of adjustment, rice varieties, Sierra Leone

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39 Harsh Discipline and Later Disruptive Behavior Disorder in Two Contexts

Authors: Olga Santesteban, Glorisa Canino, Hector R. Bird, Cristiane S. Duarte


Objective: To address whether harsh discipline is associated with disruptive behavior disorders (DBD) in Puerto Rican children over time. Background: Both cross-sectional and longitudinal studies report that rates of DBD vary by gender, age and other demographics, being more frequent among boys, later in life and among those who live in urban areas. Also, the literature supports the direct, positive association between harsh discipline and externalizing behaviors. Nevertheless, scholars have underscored the important role of race and ethnicity in understanding discipline effects on children. The impact of harsh discipline in a Puerto Rican population remains to be studied. Methods: Sample: This is a secondary analysis of the Boricua Youth Study which assessed yearly (3 times) Puerto Rican children aged 5-15 in two different sites: San Juan (Puerto Rico) and the South Bronx (NY), N=2951. Participants that did not have scores of harsh discipline in the 3 waves were excluded for this analysis (N=2091). Main Measures: a) Harsh Discipline (Parent report) was measured using 6 items from the “Parental Discipline Scale” that measures various forms of punishment, including physical and verbal abuse, and withholding affection; b) Disruptive Behavior Disorder (Parent report): Parent version of the Diagnostic Interview Schedule for Children-IV (DISC-IV) was used to asses children’s conduct disorders; c) Demographic factors: Child gender, child age, family income, marital status; d) Parental factors: parental psychopathology, parental monitoring, familism, parent support; e) Children characteristics: Controlling for any diagnostic at wave 1 (internalizing or externalizing). Data Analysis: Logistic regression was carried out relating the likelihood of DBD to harsh discipline along waves controlling for potential confounders as demographics, child and parent characteristics. Results: There were no significant differences in harsh discipline by site in wave 1 and wave 2 but there was a significant difference in wave 3. Also, there were no significant differences in DBD by site in wave 1 and wave 2 but there was a significant difference in wave 3. There was a significant difference of discipline by gender and age in all the waves. We calculated unadjusted (OR) and adjusted (AOD) and 95% confidence intervals (95%CI) showing the relation between harsh discipline at wave 1 and the presence of child disruptive behavior disorder at wave 3 for both South Bronx and Puerto Rico. There was an association between harsh discipline and the likelihood of having DBD in The Bronx (AOR=1.76; 95%CI=1.13-2.74, p.013) and in Puerto Rico (AOR=2.17; 95%CI=1.28-3.67, p.004) having controlled for demographic, parental and individual factors. Conclusions: Context may be an important differential factor shaping the potential risk of harsh discipline toward DBD for Puerto Rican children.

Keywords: disruptive behavior disorders, harsh discipline, puerto rican, psychological education

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38 Physicochemical and Thermal Characterization of Starch from Three Different Plantain Cultivars in Puerto Rico

Authors: Carmen E. Pérez-Donado, Fernando Pérez-Muñoz, Rosa N. Chávez-Jáuregui


Plantain contains starch as the majority component and represents a relevant source of this carbohydrate. Starches from different cultivars of plantain and bananas have been studied for industrialization purposes due to their morphological and thermal characteristics and their influence on food products. This study aimed to characterize the physical, chemical, and thermal properties of starch from three different plantains cultivated in Puerto Rico: Maricongo, Maiden, and FHIA 20. Amylose and amylopectin content, color, granular size, morphology, and thermal properties were determined. According to the content of amylose in starches, FHIA 20 starch presented minor content of the three cultivars studied. In terms of color, Maiden and FHIA 20 starch exhibited a significantly higher whiteness index comparing their values with Maricongo starch. The starches of the three cultivars had an elongated-ovoid morphology, with a smooth surface and a non-porous appearance. Regardless of similarities in their morphology, FHIA 20 showed a lower aspect ratio, which meant that their granules tended to be more elongated granules. Comparing the thermal properties of starches, it was found that the initial gelatinization temperature of the starch of the cultivars was similar. However, the final gelatinization temperatures of the starches belonging to the cultivars Maricongo (79.69°C) and Maiden (77.40°C) were similar, whereas FHIA 20 starch presented a noticeably higher final gelatinization temperature (87.95°C) and transition enthalpy. Despite source similarities, starches from plantain cultivars showed differences in their composition and thermal behavior. Therefore, this represents an opportunity to diversify their use in food-related applications.

Keywords: aspect ratio, morphology, Musa spp., starch, thermal properties

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37 Evidence from the Field: The Case Study of Golitos as an Effective Soccer Program for Autism Spectrum Disorder Children

Authors: J. O. Alvarez, L. Y. Rivera


Physical activity can reduce symptomatology in children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The sport of soccer has been widely applied as a therapeutic method for ASD children. However, empirical results from soccer programs are not widely known. This paper presents the case study of Golitos, the only dedicated soccer program for children on the island of Puerto Rico, and analyzes its results in the reduction of ASD social and emotional symptoms. The paper shows evidence that suggests that program approach, content, and community-based elements can make a notable difference in the effectiveness of using soccer or sports as therapeutic methods for children with ASD.

Keywords: autism, soccer, program, community

Procedia PDF Downloads 52
36 Predictive Maintenance Based on Oil Analysis Applicable to Transportation Fleets

Authors: Israel Ibarra Solis, Juan Carlos Rodriguez Sierra, Ma. del Carmen Salazar Hernandez, Isis Rodriguez Sanchez, David Perez Guerrero


At the present paper we try to explain the analysis techniques use for the lubricating oil in a maintenance period of a city bus (Mercedes Benz Boxer 40), which is call ‘R-24 route’, line Coecillo Centro SA de CV in Leon Guanajuato, to estimate the optimal time for the oil change. Using devices such as the rotational viscometer and the atomic absorption spectrometer, they can detect the incipient form when the oil loses its lubricating properties and, therefore, cannot protect the mechanical components of diesel engines such these trucks. Timely detection of lost property in the oil, it allows us taking preventive plan maintenance for the fleet.

Keywords: atomic absorption spectrometry, maintenance, predictive velocity rate, lubricating oils

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35 Appearance and Magnitude of Dynamic Pressure in Micro-Scale of Subsonic Airflow around Symmetric Objects

Authors: Shehret Tilvaldyev, Jorge Flores-Garay, Alfredo Villanueva, Erwin Martinez, Lazaro Rico


The efficiency of modern transportation is severely compromised by the prevalence of turbulent drag. The high level of turbulent skin-friction occurring, e.g., on the surface of an aircraft, automobiles or the carriage of a high-speed train, is responsible for excess fuel consumption and increased carbon emissions. The environmental, political, and economic pressure to improve fuel efficiency and reduce carbon emissions associated with transportation means that reducing turbulent skin-friction drag is a pressing engineering problem. The dynamic pressure of subsonic airflow around solid objects creates lift, but also induces drag force. This paper is presenting the results of laboratory experiments, investigating appearance and magnitude of dynamic pressure in micro scale of subsonic air flow around right cylinder and symmetrical airfoil.

Keywords: airflow, dynamic pressure, micro scale, symmetric object

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34 In Search of the Chosen One: The Effectiveness of Video Games to Reduce the Intensity of Anxiety - State in College Students

Authors: Gerardo Hernández Sierra


Today, we are exposed to different anxiogenic stimuli, some of those stimuli (such as traffic, noise, etc.) generates anxiety in people, being the anxiety a factor that can develop different disorders in people. Therefore, and to improve the quality of life of people it is necessary to find new and helpful tools according to the times we’re living to decrease their anxiety state. Moreover, video games are consolidated globally as a way of interactive entertainment characterized by being available to many people, being fun and easy to play. Even so, people reports that they like playing videogames because they decrease their stress (an anxiety detonator). This research will seek the effectiveness of some videogame genres to reduce the intensity of state anxiety in students. Using State Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI) to do a monitoring of the levels of anxiety pre and post displayed the videogames.

Keywords: anxiety, state trait anxiety inventory (STAI), stress, videogames

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33 Broad Protection against Avian Influenza Virus by Using a Modified Vaccinia Ankara Virus Expressing a Mosaic Hemagglutinin

Authors: Attapon Kamlangdee, Brock Kingstad-Bakke, Tavis K. Anderson, Tony L. Goldberg, Jorge E. Osorio


A critical failure in our preparedness for an influenza pandemic is the lack of a universal vaccine. Influenza virus strains diverge by 1 to 2% per year, and commercially available vaccines often do not elicit protection from one year to the next, necessitating frequent formulation changes. This represents a major challenge to the development of a cross-protective vaccine that can protect against circulating viral antigenic diversity. We have constructed a recombinant modified vaccinia virus Ankara (MVA) that expresses an H5N1 mosaic hemagglutinin (H5M) (MVA-H5M). This mosaic was generated in silico using 2,145 field-sourced H5N1 isolates. A single dose of MVA-H5M provided 100% protection in mice against clade 0, 1, and 2 avian influenza viruses and also protected against seasonal H1N1 virus (A/Puerto Rico/8/34). It also provided short-term (10 days) and long-term (6 months) protection post vaccination. Both neutralizing antibodies and antigen-specific CD4+and CD8+ T cells were still detected at 5 months post vaccination, suggesting that MVA-H5M provides long-lasting immunity.

Keywords: modified vaccinia Ankara, MVA, H5N1, hemagglutinin, influenza vaccine

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32 Data Augmentation for Automatic Graphical User Interface Generation Based on Generative Adversarial Network

Authors: Xulu Yao, Moi Hoon Yap, Yanlong Zhang


As a branch of artificial neural network, deep learning is widely used in the field of image recognition, but the lack of its dataset leads to imperfect model learning. By analysing the data scale requirements of deep learning and aiming at the application in GUI generation, it is found that the collection of GUI dataset is a time-consuming and labor-consuming project, which is difficult to meet the needs of current deep learning network. To solve this problem, this paper proposes a semi-supervised deep learning model that relies on the original small-scale datasets to produce a large number of reliable data sets. By combining the cyclic neural network with the generated countermeasure network, the cyclic neural network can learn the sequence relationship and characteristics of data, make the generated countermeasure network generate reasonable data, and then expand the Rico dataset. Relying on the network structure, the characteristics of collected data can be well analysed, and a large number of reasonable data can be generated according to these characteristics. After data processing, a reliable dataset for model training can be formed, which alleviates the problem of dataset shortage in deep learning.

Keywords: GUI, deep learning, GAN, data augmentation

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31 The Challenges of Security Sector Governance in West African Democracies-The Ecowas Response Mechanism

Authors: Adamu Buba


As West Africa gradually recovers from the cost of more than a decade of civil conflicts in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Côte d’Ivoire, ECOWAS has continued to place prominence on peace consolidation and the prevention of conflict in the West African Sub-Region. Of particular interest is the recent political uprising in Mali and in this regard, ECOWAS has been repositioning their existing machineries to manage this dispensation more effectively by improving their early warning and mediation capabilities. This paper firstly seeks among other things to provide a conceptual understanding of what security sector governance is, and also highlight the overview of ECOWAS and to closely examine the benchmark for assessing progress in the promotion of democracy and political governance within the sub-region as well as conflict prevention techniques. The views and analysis expressed in this paper is based on secondary method of data collection alone and do not in any way represent the views of the institutions or their representatives involved in this assignment in one way or the other.

Keywords: challenges, security, governance, ecowas, response

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30 Towards Optimising Building Information Modelling and Building Management System in Higher Education Institutions Facility Management: A Review

Authors: Zhuoqun Sun, Francisco Sierra, A. Booth


With BIM rapidly implemented in the design and construction stage of a project, researchers begin to focus on improving the operation and maintenance stage with the aid of BIM. Since the increasing amount of electronic equipment installed in the building, building management system becomes mainstream for controlling a building, especially in higher education institutions that can play an important role in terms of reducing carbon emission and improving energy efficiency. Currently, an approach to integrate BIM and BMS to improve HEIs facility management has not been established yet. Thus, this paper aims to analyse the benefits, issues, and trends of BIM and BMS integration and their application in HEIs. A systematic literature review was carried out on SCOPUS by applying the PRISMA methodology. 73 articles have been chosen based on keywords, abstracts, and the full content of the articles. The benefit and existed issues from the articles are analysed. The review shows the need to develop a tool to improve facility management through BIM BMS integration.

Keywords: BIM, BMS, HEIs, review

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29 Application of Transform Fourier for Dynamic Control of Structures with Global Positioning System

Authors: J. M. de Luis Ruiz, P. M. Sierra García, R. P. García, R. P. Álvarez, F. P. García, E. C. López


Given the evolution of viaducts, structural health monitoring requires more complex techniques to define their state. two alternatives can be distinguished: experimental and operational modal analysis. Although accelerometers or Global Positioning System (GPS) have been applied for the monitoring of structures under exploitation, the dynamic monitoring during the stage of construction is not common. This research analyzes whether GPS data can be applied to certain dynamic geometric controls of evolving structures. The fundamentals of this work were applied to the New Bridge of Cádiz (Spain), a worldwide milestone in bridge building. GPS data were recorded with an interval of 1 second during the erection of segments and turned to the frequency domain with Fourier transform. The vibration period and amplitude were contrasted with those provided by the finite element model, with differences of less than 10%, which is admissible. This process provides a vibration record of the structure with GPS, avoiding specific equipment.

Keywords: Fourier transform, global position system, operational modal analysis, structural health monitoring

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28 Synthesis of Biopolymeric Nanoparticles of Starch for Packaging Reinforcement Applications

Authors: Yousof Farrag, Sara Malmir, Rebeca Bouza, Maite Rico, Belén Montero, Luís Barral


Biopolymers are being extensively studied in the last years as a replacement of the conventional petroleum derived polymers, especially in packaging industry. They are natural, biodegradable materials. However, the lack of good mechanical and barrier properties is a problem in the way of this replacement. One of the most abundant biopolymers in the nature is the starch, its renewable, biocompatible low cost polysaccharide, it can be obtained from wide variety of plants, it has been used in food, packaging and other industries. This work is focusing on the production a high yield of starch nanoparticles via nanoprecipitation, to be used as reinforcement filling of biopolymer packaging matrices made of different types of starch improving their mechanical and barrier properties. Wheat and corn starch solutions were prepared in different concentrations. Absolute ethanol, acetone and different concentrations of hydrochloric acid were added as antisolvents dropwise under different amplitudes of sonication and different speeds of stirring, the produced particles were analyzed with dynamic light scattering DLS and scanning electron microscope SEM getting the morphology and the size distribution to study the effect of those factors on the produced particles. DLS results show that we have nanoparticles using low concentration of corn starch (0.5%) using 0.1M HCl as antisolvent, [Z average: 209 nm, PDI: 0,49], in case of wheat starch, we could obtain nanoparticles [Z average: 159 nm, PDI: 0,45] using the same starch solution concentration together with absolute ethanol as antisolvent.

Keywords: biopolymers, nanoparticles, DLS, starch

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27 Social Representations: Unplanned and Unwanted Pregnancy in Adolescents from Leon-Mexico

Authors: Alejandra Sierra, Maria de los Angeles Covarrubias, Guillermo Julian Gonzalez, Noe Alfaro


The objective of this study was to identify the cultural dimensions of the terms unplanned pregnancy and unwanted pregnancy built by adolescent women, through the focus of the social representations. Two associative methods were used: free listings and the paired comparison. 72 female students between the ages of 15 and 19 were interviewed, from the downtown area of Leon Guanajuato, Mexico. Words related to inducer terms were classified into five thematic categories: facilitators, consequences, reactions, expectations, and lexicon. The results showed that the social representations of unplanned pregnancy highlighted elements related to economic difficulties and negative emotional aspects, while unwanted pregnancy was associated with negative emotional aspects such as anger, anxiety, and sadness. The meanings each person attributes to terms related to pregnancy are culturally constructed and differ between populations; therefore, more attention should be paid to understanding the cultural meanings and attitudes of people in fertility decision-making, including also the views of adolescent men and other types of population, stratified by age groups and social conditions.

Keywords: adolescent, qualitative research, unplanned pregnancy, unwanted pregnancy

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26 Sludge and Compost Amendments in Tropical Soils: Impact on Coriander (Coriandrum sativum) Nutrient Content

Authors: M. López-Moreno, L. Lugo Avilés, F. Román, J. Lugo Rosas, J. Hernández-Viezcas Jr., Peralta-Videa, J. Gardea-Torresdey


Degradation of agricultural soils has increased rapidly during the last 20 years due to the indiscriminate use of pesticides and other anthropogenic activities. Currently, there is an urgent need of soil restoration to increase agricultural production. Utilization of sewage sludge or municipal solid waste is an important way to recycle nutrient elements and improve soil quality. With these amendments, nutrient availability in the aqueous phase might be increased and production of healthier crops can be accomplished. This research project aimed to achieve sustainable management of tropical agricultural soils, specifically in Puerto Rico, through the amendment of water treatment plant sludge’s. This practice avoids landfill disposal of sewage sludge and at the same time results cost-effective practice for recycling solid waste residues. Coriander sativum was cultivated in a compost-soil-sludge mixture at different proportions. Results showed that Coriander grown in a mixture of 25% compost+50% Voladora soi+25% sludge had the best growth and development. High chlorophyll content (33.01 ± 0.8) was observed in Coriander plants cultivated in 25% compost+62.5% Coloso soil+ 12.5% sludge compared to plants grown with no sludge (32.59 ± 0.7). ICP-OES analysis showed variations in mineral element contents (macro and micronutrients) in coriander plant grown I soil amended with sludge and compost.

Keywords: compost, Coriandrum sativum, nutrients, waste sludge

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25 Child Soldier in Africa: A Big Challenge to Human Right

Authors: Adegboyega Adeolapo Ola, Gerelene Jagganath


One of the greatest challenges of human right in the world, especially African states is the use of child soldiers in armed conflict, constituting a major source of destruction of lives and properties. Mostly, they are in developing countries with the situation in Sub-Saharan Africa, the abduction and employment of children as soldiers is a form of exploitative labour that is tantamount to slavery. Since the end of cold war, Child soldier has increased in Africa countries like Angola, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Uganda. This study examines the main cause of the recruitment and use of child soldiers and its challenges to human right. It further assesses the role of international regional bodies and various governments in curbing child soldiers with a view to proffer suggestions on how to address some of the resultant threat of human right. The study posits that the control of small arms and light weapons is essential in curtailing the spread of child soldier and abuse of human right. This hopefully should result in the sustainability of human/child right in African continent. It is a recommendation of this study that, in order to sustain human right in the region, all Africa leaders, government and regional bodies; such as African Union, Economic Community of West African States, South African Development Community among others, should cooperate and work together to address the issue of illicit small arms, which could eventually lead to child soldier.

Keywords: arms control, child soldier, human right, small arms

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24 Healing the Scars of the Past: The Great Challenge and Failed Attempt of European Union to Create a Supranational Identity

Authors: David Martínez Rico, Juan Pablo Farid Cuéllar Martínez


After more than half a century that the first treaty of European cooperation was created, the final result of a difficult and long historical process, which is the current European Union, is facing economical and social challenges. The barriers of policies differences and national sovereignties seem to be being defeated in the last and present decades. However, the last crisis of 2008 brought back problems as xenophobia and nationalism. In this ambit of identity, European Union has made many efforts to reinforce a European identity and leave behind the radical nationalisms which generated World Wars. Nevertheless, these social problems are increasing and becoming more present in the life of many Europeans. Even, in the last Euro Parliamentarian Elections of the present year, 2014, the extreme right parties, in favor of xenophobic and anti European ideals, got more seats and are increasing their presence in Euro Parliament. This essay approaches to this controversial topic of European identity. Taking as start point the nationalist divisions that are causing internal divergences in Europe, the authors of this research study the role and contributions of the Memorials of the fallen soldiers and heroes of World Wars, present in many cities as Amsterdam, Brussels and Paris, to the impossibility to reach an European identity, it means that Europeans feel first part of Europe in place to feel first part of a nation. The objective of this essay is to reaffirm the thesis that establishes that the European Union won´t reach the longed supranational identity with just with the current strategies, because yet there are many cultural elements in its member states societies which exalt the heroes and soldiers of the past wars, increasing nationalism feelings. Besides, in it are promoted some interesting ideas that could change the course in this quest of a European social identity.

Keywords: identity, memorials, European identity, nationalism, proposals

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23 Transitioning Classroom Students to Working Learners: Lived Experiences of Senior High School Work Immersion Students

Authors: Rico Herrero


The study looked into the different lived experiences of senior high school to work immersion and how they were able to cope up in the transition stage from being classroom students into immersion students in work immersion site. The participants of the study were the ten senior high school students from Punta Integrated School. Using interview guide questions, the researchers motivated the participants to reveal their thoughts, feelings, and experiences in the interviews via video recording. The researchers utilized the qualitative research design, but the approach used was grounded theory. The findings revealed the participants’ lived experiences on how to cope or overcome the transition stage during the work immersion program. They unanimously responded to the interview questions. And based on the themes that emerged from the testimonies of the Senior High School students, the classroom learners benefited a lot from authentic learning opportunity of immersion program. Work immersion provides the students the opportunity to learn and develop their skills/ competencies related to the field of specialization. The hands-on training provides them simulation of work. They realized that theoretical learning in school is not enough to be equipped to work. Immersion program also provides venue for values and standard transformation. Senior High School students felt a high demand of self-confidence at the beginning of their race. Good thing, self-esteem of an individual helps bring out one’s potential at its best. Students find it challenging to get along with people in all ages. But, the endeavour absolutely helps them to grow maturely. Participants also realized that it’s not easy to deal with time pressure. Hence, the immersion program taught them to learn about time management. Part of the best training is to expose the learners to the harsh reality. Despite of the things that the school had taught them, still, students realized that they are not yet ready to deal with the demands of work. Furthermore, they also found out that they need to develop an interpersonal skill to improve their human relationships.

Keywords: grounded theory, lived experiences, senior high school, work immersion

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22 Evaluation of the Effect of Lactose Derived Monosaccharide on Galactooligosaccharides Production by β-Galactosidase

Authors: Yenny Paola Morales Cortés, Fabián Rico Rodríguez, Juan Carlos Serrato Bermúdez, Carlos Arturo Martínez Riascos


Numerous benefits of galactooligosaccharides (GOS) as prebiotics have motivated the study of enzymatic processes for their production. These processes have special complexities due to several factors that make difficult high productivity, such as enzyme type, reaction medium pH, substrate concentrations and presence of inhibitors, among others. In the present work the production of galactooligosaccharides (with different degrees of polymerization: two, three and four) from lactose was studied. The study considers the formulation of a mathematical model that predicts the production of GOS from lactose using the enzyme β-galactosidase. The effect of pH in the reaction was studied. For that, phosphate buffer was used and with this was evaluated three pH values ( and 7.0). Thus it was observed that at pH 6.0 the enzymatic activity insignificant. On the other hand, at pH 7.0 the enzymatic activity was approximately 27 times greater than at 6.5. The last result differs from previously reported results. Therefore, pH 7.0 was chosen as working pH. Additionally, the enzyme concentration was analyzed, which allowed observing that the effect of the concentration depends on the pH and the concentration was set for the following studies in 0.272 mM. Afterwards, experiments were performed varying the lactose concentration to evaluate its effects on the process and to generate the data for the adjustment of the mathematical model parameters. The mathematical model considers the reactions of lactose hydrolysis and transgalactosylation for the production of disaccharides and trisaccharides, with their inverse reactions. The production of tetrasaccharides was negligible and, because of that, it was not included in the model. The reaction was monitored by HPLC and for the quantitative analysis of the experimental data the Matlab programming language was used, including solvers for differential equations systems integration (ode15s) and nonlinear problems optimization (fminunc). The results confirm that the transgalactosylation and hydrolysis reactions are reversible, additionally inhibition by glucose and galactose is observed on the production of GOS. In relation to the production process of galactooligosaccharides, the results show that it is necessary to have high initial concentrations of lactose considering that favors the transgalactosylation reaction, while low concentrations favor hydrolysis reactions.

Keywords: β-galactosidase, galactooligosaccharides, inhibition, lactose, Matlab, modeling

Procedia PDF Downloads 267
21 Alleviation of Thermal Stress in Pinus ponderosa by Plant-Growth Promoting Rhizobacteria Isolated from Mixed-Conifer Forests

Authors: Kelli G. Thorup, Kristopher A. Blee


Climate change enhances the occurrence of extreme weather: wildfires, drought, rising summer temperatures, all of which dramatically decline forest growth and increase tree mortality in the mixed-conifer forests of Sierra Nevada, California. However, microbiota living in mutualistic relations with plant rhizospheres have been found to mitigate the effects of suboptimal environmental conditions. The goal of this research is to isolate native beneficial bacteria, plant-growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR), that can alleviate heat stress in Pinus ponderosa seedlings. Bacteria were isolated from the rhizosphere of Pinus ponderosa juveniles located in mixed-conifer stand and further characterized for PGP potential based on their ability to produce key growth regulatory phytohormones including auxin, cytokinin, and gibberellic acid. Out of ten soil samples taken, sixteen colonies were isolated and qualitatively confirmed to produce indole-3-acetic acid (auxin) using Salkowski’s reagent. Future testing will be conducted to quantitatively assess phytohormone production in bacterial isolates. Furthermore, bioassays will be performed to determine isolates abilities to increase tolerance in heat-stressed Pinus ponderosa seedlings. Upon completion of this research, a PGPR could be utilized to support the growth and transplantation of conifer seedlings as summer temperatures continue to rise due to the effects of climate change.

Keywords: conifer, heat-stressed, phytohormones, Pinus ponderosa, plant-growth promoting rhizobacteria

Procedia PDF Downloads 47