Commenced in January 2007
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Edition: International
Paper Count: 21

Search results for: Kohei Inoue

21 Binarized-Weight Bilateral Filter for Low Computational Cost Image Smoothing

Authors: Yu Zhang, Kohei Inoue, Kiichi Urahama


We propose a simplified bilateral filter with binarized coefficients for accelerating it. Its computational cost is further decreased by sampling pixels. This computationally low cost filter is useful for smoothing or denoising images by using mobile devices with limited computational power.

Keywords: bilateral filter, binarized-weight bilateral filter, image smoothing, image denoising, pixel sampling

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20 Integral Image-Based Differential Filters

Authors: Kohei Inoue, Kenji Hara, Kiichi Urahama


We describe a relationship between integral images and differential images. First, we derive a simple difference filter from conventional integral image. In the derivation, we show that an integral image and the corresponding differential image are related to each other by simultaneous linear equations, where the numbers of unknowns and equations are the same, and therefore, we can execute the integration and differentiation by solving the simultaneous equations. We applied the relationship to an image fusion problem, and experimentally verified the effectiveness of the proposed method.

Keywords: integral images, differential images, differential filters, image fusion

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19 Dark and Bright Envelopes for Dehazing Images

Authors: Zihan Yu, Kohei Inoue, Kiichi Urahama


We present a method for de-hazing images. A dark envelope image is derived with the bilateral minimum filter and a bright envelope is derived with the bilateral maximum filter. The ambient light and transmission of the scene are estimated from these two envelope images. An image without haze is reconstructed from the estimated ambient light and transmission.

Keywords: image dehazing, bilateral minimum filter, bilateral maximum filter, local contrast

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18 An Alternative Proof for the Topological Entropy of the Motzkin Shift

Authors: Fahad Alsharari, Mohd Salmi Md. Noorani


A Motzkin shift is a mathematical model for constraints on genetic sequences. In terms of the theory of symbolic dynamics, the Motzkin shift is nonsofic, and therefore, we cannot use the Perron-Frobenius theory to calculate its topological entropy. The Motzkin shift M(M,N) which comes from language theory, is defined to be the shift system over an alphabet A that consists of N negative symbols, N positive symbols and M neutral symbols. For an x in the full shift AZ, x is in M(M,N) if and only if every finite block appearing in x has a non-zero reduced form. Therefore, the constraint for x cannot be bounded in length. K. Inoue has shown that the entropy of the Motzkin shift M(M,N) is log(M + N + 1). In this paper, we find a new method of calculating the topological entropy of the Motzkin shift M(M,N) without any measure theoretical discussion.

Keywords: entropy, Motzkin shift, mathematical model, theory

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17 Exploring Exterior and Oral Tradition of Kyoto as the Act of Cultural Design

Authors: Takuya Inoue


Applying affordance theory to the field of communication research has been more significant. This paper suggests that the act of design, including language, is defined as encouraging or restricting affordance of an object or event and make it perceivable for users, rather merely conveying information. From this point of view, 5 types of oral expressions in Kyoto dialect, as well as 4 types of exterior design such as sekimori-ishi (a barrier-stone in a teahouse garden) which are specific to traditions in Kyoto, are examined. We found that exterior designs have no physical power in itself, they work as ‘signifier’ to highlight cultural frames which heavily depend on exclusive culture among city-dwellers in Kyoto. At the same time, the expressions are implicit, even sometimes sarcastic, which are also supported by cultural frames. In conclusion, the existence of traditional design is motivated in informative ‘ecological frame.’

Keywords: affordance theory, communication, cultural design, Japanese culture, Kyoto dialect, signifier

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16 Preparation of CuAlO2 Thin Films on Si or Sapphire Substrate by Sol-Gel Method Using Metal Acetate or Nitrate

Authors: Takashi Ehara, Takayoshi Nakanishi, Kohei Sasaki, Marina Abe, Hiroshi Abe, Kiyoaki Abe, Ryo Iizaka, Takuya Sato


CuAlO2 thin films are prepared on Si or sapphire substrate by sol-gel method using two kinds of sols. One is combination of Cu acetate and Al acetate basic, and the other is Cu nitrate and Al nitrate. In the case of acetate sol, XRD peaks of CuAlO2 observed at annealing temperature of 800-950 ºC on both Si and sapphire substrates. In contrast, in the case of the films prepared using nitrate on Si substrate, XRD peaks of CuAlO2 have been observed only at the annealing temperature of 800-850 ºC. At annealing temperature of 850ºC, peaks of other species have been observed beside the CuAlO2 peaks, then, the CuAlO2 peaks disappeared at annealing temperature of 900 °C with increasing in intensity of the other peaks. Intensity of the other peaks decreased at annealing temperature of 950 ºC with appearance of broad SiO2 peak. In the present, we ascribe these peaks as metal silicide.

Keywords: CuAlO2, silicide, thin Films, transparent conducting oxide

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15 Examining Media Literacy Strategies through Questionnaires and Analyzing the Behavioral Patterns of Middle-Aged and Elderly Persons

Authors: Chia Yen Li, Wen Huei Chou, Mieko Ohsuga, Tsuyoshi Inoue


The evolution of the digital age has led to people’s lives being pervaded by both facts and misinformation, challenging media literacy (ML). Middle-aged and elderly persons (MEPs) are prone to disseminating large amounts of misinformation, which often endangers their lives due to erroneously believing such information. At present, several countries have actively established fact-checking platforms to combat misinformation, but they are unable to keep pace with the rapid proliferation of such information on social media. In this study, the questionnaire survey method was used to collect data on MEPs’ behavior, cognition, attitudes, and concepts of social media when using a mobile instant messaging app called LINE; analyze their behavioral patterns and reasons for sharing misinformation; and summarize design strategies for improving their ML. The findings can serve as a reference in future related research.

Keywords: media literacy, middle-aged and elderly persons, social media, misinformation

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14 Ultrasonic Evaluation of Periodic Rough Inaccessible Surfaces from Back Side

Authors: Chanh Nghia Nguyen, Yu Kurokawa, Hirotsugu Inoue


The surface roughness is an important parameter for evaluating the quality of material surfaces since it affects functions and performance of industrial components. Although stylus and optical techniques are commonly used for measuring the surface roughness, they are applicable only to accessible surfaces. In practice, surface roughness measurement from the back side is sometimes demanded, for example, in inspection of safety-critical parts such as inner surface of pipes. However, little attention has been paid to the measurement of back surface roughness so far. Since back surface is usually inaccessible by stylus or optical techniques, ultrasonic technique is one of the most effective among others. In this research, an ultrasonic pulse-echo technique is considered for evaluating the pitch and the height of back surface having periodic triangular profile as a very first step. The pitch of the surface profile is measured by applying the diffraction grating theory for oblique incidence; then the height is evaluated by numerical analysis based on the Kirchhoff theory for normal incidence. The validity of the proposed method was verified by both numerical simulation and experiment. It was confirmed that the pitch is accurately measured in most cases. The height was also evaluated with good accuracy when it is smaller than a half of the pitch because of the approximation in the Kirchhoff theory.

Keywords: back side, inaccessible surface, periodic roughness, pulse-echo technique, ultrasonic NDE

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13 Isolation, Identification and Characterization of 1,2-Dichlorobenzene Degrading Bacteria from Consortium

Authors: Ge Cui, Mei Fang Chien, Chihiro Inoue


In this research, enrichment culture using an inorganic liquid medium collected soil contaminated with 1,2-dichlorobenzene (1,2-DCB) in Sendai, Japan, was added 1,2-DCB as the sole carbon source to create a stable consortium. The purpose of this research is to analysis dominant microorganisms in the stable consortium and enzyme system which play a role in the degradation of DCBs. The consortium is now at 30 generation and is still being cultured. By the result of PCR-DGGE and clone library, two bacteria are dominant. The bacteria named sk1 was isolated. 40mg/l of 1,2-DCB and 40mg/l of 1,4-DCB were completely degraded after 32 hours and 50 hours, respectively, but no degradation occurred in the case of 1,3-DCB. By PCR, tecA1 (α-subunit of DCB dioxygenase) gene which plays a role degrading DCB to DCB dihydrodiol, and tecB (dehydrogenase) gene which plays a role degrading DCB dihydrodiol to dichlorocatechol were amplified from strain sk1. Bacteria named sk100 was also isolated. 40mg/l of 1,2-DCB was completely degraded after 32 hours, but no degradation occurred in case of 1,3-DCB and 1,4-DCB. By the result of the catalytic core region of dioxygenase amplified by PCR, gene played a role degrading DCB was analyzed. The results of this study concluded that the isolated strains which have not been reported are able to degrade 1,2-DCB stably, and the characterization of degradation and the genomic analysis which is now in progress is helpful to have an overall view of this microbial degradation.

Keywords: DCB, 1, 2-DCB degrading strains, DCB dioxygenase, enrichment culture

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12 A Questionnaire-Based Survey: Therapists Response towards Upper Limb Disorder Learning Tool

Authors: Noor Ayuni Che Zakaria, Takashi Komeda, Cheng Yee Low, Kaoru Inoue, Fazah Akhtar Hanapiah


Previous studies have shown that there are arguments regarding the reliability and validity of the Ashworth and Modified Ashworth Scale towards evaluating patients diagnosed with upper limb disorders. These evaluations depended on the raters’ experiences. This initiated us to develop an upper limb disorder part-task trainer that is able to simulate consistent upper limb disorders, such as spasticity and rigidity signs, based on the Modified Ashworth Scale to improve the variability occurring between raters and intra-raters themselves. By providing consistent signs, novice therapists would be able to increase training frequency and exposure towards various levels of signs. A total of 22 physiotherapists and occupational therapists participated in the study. The majority of the therapists agreed that with current therapy education, they still face problems with inter-raters and intra-raters variability (strongly agree 54%; n = 12/22, agree 27%; n = 6/22) in evaluating patients’ conditions. The therapists strongly agreed (72%; n = 16/22) that therapy trainees needed to increase their frequency of training; therefore believe that our initiative to develop an upper limb disorder training tool will help in improving the clinical education field (strongly agree and agree 63%; n = 14/22).

Keywords: upper limb disorder, clinical education tool, inter/intra-raters variability, spasticity, modified Ashworth scale

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11 Bereavement Risk Assessment of Family Caregivers of Patients with Cancer: Relationship between Bereavement Risk and Post-Loss Psychological Distress

Authors: Tomohiro Uchida, Noriaki Satake, Toshimichi Nakaho, Akira Inoue, Hidemitsu Saito


In this study, we assessed the bereavement risk of family caregivers of patients with cancer. In the palliative care unit of Tohoku University Hospital, we conducted a family psychoeducation session to support the family caregivers of patients with cancer. A total of 50 participants (8 males and 42 females; mean age = 62.98 years, SD = 11.10) were assessed after the session for bereavement risk using the Japanese version of the Bereavement Risk Assessment Tool (BRAT-J). According to the BRAT-J scores, eight participants were considered to be having no known risk (Level 1), seventeen had minimal risk (Level 2), twenty had a low risk (Level 3), four had a moderate risk (Level 4), and one had a high risk (Level 5). Of these participants, seven participants had completed the follow-up postal survey that assessed their psychological distress (the Kessler Psychological Distress Scale: K6) to compare the bereavement risk. According to the K6 scores, three-fourth of the individuals, who were considered to be at Level 3 on the BRAT-J, scored higher than the cutoff point (>10) for the detection of depressive disorder. On the other hand, one-third of the individuals, who were considered to be at Level 2 on the BRAT-J, scored higher than the cutoff point. Therefore, it appears that the BRAT-J can predict the likelihood of difficulties or complications in bereaved family caregivers. This research was approved by the Ethics Committee of Tohoku University Graduate School of Medicine and Tohoku University Hospital.

Keywords: palliative care, family caregivers, bereavement risk, BRAT, post-loss psychological distress

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10 Bi-Liquid Free Surface Flow Simulation of Liquid Atomization for Bi-Propellant Thrusters

Authors: Junya Kouwa, Shinsuke Matsuno, Chihiro Inoue, Takehiro Himeno, Toshinori Watanabe


Bi-propellant thrusters use impinging jet atomization to atomize liquid fuel and oxidizer. Atomized propellants are mixed and combusted due to auto-ignitions. Therefore, it is important for a prediction of thruster’s performance to simulate the primary atomization phenomenon; especially, the local mixture ratio can be used as indicator of thrust performance, so it is useful to evaluate it from numerical simulations. In this research, we propose a numerical method for considering bi-liquid and the mixture and install it to CIP-LSM which is a two-phase flow simulation solver with level-set and MARS method as an interfacial tracking method and can predict local mixture ratio distribution downstream from an impingement point. A new parameter, beta, which is defined as the volume fraction of one liquid in the mixed liquid within a cell is introduced and the solver calculates the advection of beta, inflow and outflow flux of beta to a cell. By validating this solver, we conducted a simple experiment and the same simulation by using the solver. From the result, the solver can predict the penetrating length of a liquid jet correctly and it is confirmed that the solver can simulate the mixing of liquids. Then we apply this solver to the numerical simulation of impinging jet atomization. From the result, the inclination angle of fan after the impingement in the bi-liquid condition reasonably agrees with the theoretical value. Also, it is seen that the mixture of liquids can be simulated in this result. Furthermore, simulation results clarify that the injecting condition affects the atomization process and local mixture ratio distribution downstream drastically.

Keywords: bi-propellant thrusters, CIP-LSM, free-surface flow simulation, impinging jet atomization

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9 Association between Severe Acidemia before Endotracheal Intubation and the Lower First Attempt Intubation Success Rate

Authors: Keiko Naito, Y. Nakashima, S. Yamauchi, Y. Kunitani, Y. Ishigami, K. Numata, M. Mizobe, Y. Homma, J. Takahashi, T. Inoue, T. Shiga, H. Funakoshi


Background: A presence of severe acidemia, defined as pH < 7.2, is common during endotracheal intubation for critically ill patients in the emergency department (ED). Severe acidemia is widely recognized as a predisposing factor for intubation failure. However, it is unclear that acidemic condition itself actually makes endotracheal intubation more difficult. We aimed to evaluate if a presence of severe acidemia before intubation is associated with the lower first attempt intubation success rate in the ED. Methods: This is a retrospective observational cohort study in the ED of an urban hospital in Japan. The collected data included patient demographics, such as age, sex, and body mass index, presence of one or more factors of modified LEMON criteria for predicting difficult intubation, reasons for intubation, blood gas levels, airway equipment, intubation by emergency physician or not, and the use of the rapid sequence intubation technique. Those with any of the following were excluded from the analysis: (1) no blood gas drawn before intubation, (2) cardiopulmonary arrest, and (3) under 18 years of age. The primary outcome was the first attempt intubation success rates between a severe acidemic patients (SA) group and a non-severe acidemic patients (NA) group. Logistic regression analysis was used to test the first attempt success rates for intubations between those two groups. Results: Over 5 years, a total of 486 intubations were performed; 105 in the SA group and 381 in the NA group. The univariate analysis showed that the first attempt intubation success rate was lower in the SA group than in the NA group (71.4% vs 83.5%, p < 0.01). The multivariate logistic regression analysis identified that severe acidemia was significantly associated with the first attempt intubation failure (OR 1.9, 95% CI 1.03-3.68, p = 0.04). Conclusions: A presence of severe acidemia before endotracheal intubation lowers the first attempt intubation success rate in the ED.

Keywords: acidemia, airway management, endotracheal intubation, first-attempt intubation success rate

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8 Site-Specific Delivery of Hybrid Upconversion Nanoparticles for Photo-Activated Multimodal Therapies of Glioblastoma

Authors: Yuan-Chung Tsai, Masao Kamimura, Kohei Soga, Hsin-Cheng Chiu


In order to enhance the photodynamic/photothermal therapeutic efficacy on glioblastoma, the functionized upconversion nanoparticles with the capability of converting the deep tissue penetrating near-infrared light into visible wavelength for activating photochemical reaction were developed. The drug-loaded nanoparticles (NPs) were obtained from the self-assembly of oleic acid-coated upconversion nanoparticles along with maleimide-conjugated poly(ethylene glycol)-cholesterol (Mal-PEG-Chol), as the NP stabilizer, and hydrophobic photosensitizers, IR-780 (for photothermal therapy, PTT) and mTHPC (for photodynamic therapy, PDT), in aqueous phase. Both the IR-780 and mTHPC were loaded into the hydrophobic domains within NPs via hydrophobic association. The peptide targeting ligand, angiopep-2, was further conjugated with the maleimide groups at the end of PEG adducts on the NP surfaces, enabling the affinity coupling with the low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein-1 of tumor endothelial cells and malignant astrocytes. The drug-loaded NPs with the size of ca 80 nm in diameter exhibit a good colloidal stability in physiological conditions. The in vitro data demonstrate the successful targeting delivery of drug-loaded NPs toward the ALTS1C1 cells (murine astrocytoma cells) and the pronounced cytotoxicity elicited by combinational effect of PDT and PTT. The in vivo results show the promising brain orthotopic tumor targeting of drug-loaded NPs and sound efficacy for brain tumor dual-modality treatment. This work shows great potential for improving photodynamic/photothermal therapeutic efficacy of brain cancer.

Keywords: drug delivery, orthotopic brain tumor, photodynamic/photothermal therapies, upconversion nanoparticles

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7 Comparison of Allowable Stress Method and Time History Response Analysis for Seismic Design of Buildings

Authors: Sayuri Inoue, Naohiro Nakamura, Tsubasa Hamada


The seismic design method of buildings is classified into two types: static design and dynamic design. The static design is a design method that exerts static force as seismic force and is a relatively simple design method created based on the experience of seismic motion in the past 100 years. At present, static design is used for most of the Japanese buildings. Dynamic design mainly refers to the time history response analysis. It is a comparatively difficult design method that input the earthquake motion assumed in the building model and examine the response. Currently, it is only used for skyscrapers and specific buildings. In the present design standard in Japan, it is good to use either the design method of the static design and the dynamic design in the medium and high-rise buildings. However, when actually designing middle and high-rise buildings by two kinds of design methods, the relatively simple static design method satisfies the criteria, but in the case of a little difficult dynamic design method, the criterion isn't often satisfied. This is because the dynamic design method was built with the intention of designing super high-rise buildings. In short, higher safety is required as compared with general buildings, and criteria become stricter. The authors consider applying the dynamic design method to general buildings designed by the static design method so far. The reason is that application of the dynamic design method is reasonable for buildings that are out of the conventional standard structural form such as emphasizing design. For the purpose, it is important to compare the design results when the criteria of both design methods are arranged side by side. In this study, we performed time history response analysis to medium-rise buildings that were actually designed with allowable stress method. Quantitative comparison between static design and dynamic design was conducted, and characteristics of both design methods were examined.

Keywords: buildings, seismic design, allowable stress design, time history response analysis, Japanese seismic code

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6 Revisiting Classic Triad of Japanese Spotted Fever: A Case Series of Forty-Three Patients

Authors: Y. Kunitani, Y. Nakashima, S. Yamauchi, Y. Ishigami, K. Naito, K. Numata, M. Mizobe, Y. Homma, J. Takahashi, T. Inoue, T. Shiga, H. Funakoshi


Background: Japanese Spotted Fever (JSF) is one of the Rickettsial infections, caused by Rickettsia japonica, which is transmitted by ticks. JSF is seen in limited area, such as Japan and South Korea. Its clinical triad is rash, eschar and fever. It often shows leukocytopenia, thrombopenia, elevated transaminase and high C-reactive protein (CRP). Sometimes it can be life-threatening due to disseminated intravascular coagulation or multiple organ failure. Study Aim: The aim of this study is to describe the features of JSF, as this unique infection is rapidly growing in Japan. Methods: This is a case series of JSF from 2009 to 2016, in Mie Prefectural Hospital in Japan. We collected JSF cases, which were diagnosed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) of the skin or blood serum, or the elevation of the antibody titer of paired blood samples. Results: There were 43 JSF patients (19 male, 24 female) with a median age of 71 years [IQR:65-80]. The median body temperature was 38.1°C[IQR: 37.5-39.0]. 95% had a rash, 67% had eschar and 50% had fever. The median WBC count was 6,700 [IQR: 5,750-8,200] and leukocytopenia was observed in only 7%. The median platelet count was 14x104 [IQR10x104-17x104], thrombopenia was observed in 65%. The median aspartate transaminase (AST) was 53 IU/L [IQR: 41-93]; the median alanine aminotransferase (ALT) was 34 IU/L [IQR: 24-54]; the median CRP was 10.4 mg/dL [IQR:7.2-13.9]; the median lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) was 352IU/L [IQR:282-451]. CRP and LDH were elevated in almost all of the patients. Median length of stay in hospital was 8 days [IQR: 6-11]. All patients were treated with tetracycline and quinolone on the day of the presentation. There was no fatality from JSF. Conclusion: The patients with JSF classically presents with eschar, rash and fever. However, in this study, the half of the patients were afebrile. Although JSF is not a common infectious disease worldwide, if the patient had previously visited Japan or South Korea and presented with rash and eschar with or without fever, we should consider JSF as a potential diagnosis.

Keywords: infectious disease, Japanese spotted fever, Rickettsial disease, Rickettsia japonica

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5 Application of Recycled Tungsten Carbide Powder for Fabrication of Iron Based Powder Metallurgy Alloy

Authors: Yukinori Taniguchi, Kazuyoshi Kurita, Kohei Mizuta, Keigo Nishitani, Ryuichi Fukuda


Tungsten carbide is widely used as a tool material in metal manufacturing process. Since tungsten is typical rare metal, establishment of recycle process of tungsten carbide tools and restore into cemented carbide material bring great impact to metal manufacturing industry. Recently, recycle process of tungsten carbide has been developed and established gradually. However, the demands for quality of cemented carbide tool are quite severe because hardness, toughness, anti-wear ability, heat resistance, fatigue strength and so on should be guaranteed for precision machining and tool life. Currently, it is hard to restore the recycled tungsten carbide powder entirely as raw material for new processed cemented carbide tool. In this study, to suggest positive use of recycled tungsten carbide powder, we have tried to fabricate a carbon based sintered steel which shows reinforced mechanical properties with recycled tungsten carbide powder. We have made set of newly designed sintered steels. Compression test of sintered specimen in density ratio of 0.85 (which means 15% porosity inside) has been conducted. As results, at least 1.7 times higher in nominal strength in the amount of 7.0 wt.% was shown in recycled WC powder. The strength reached to over 600 MPa for the Fe-WC-Co-Cu sintered alloy. Wear test has been conducted by using ball-on-disk type friction tester using 5 mm diameter ball with normal force of 2 N in the dry conditions. Wear amount after 1,000 m running distance shows that about 1.5 times longer life was shown in designed sintered alloy. Since results of tensile test showed that same tendency in previous testing, it is concluded that designed sintered alloy can be used for several mechanical parts with special strength and anti-wear ability in relatively low cost due to recycled tungsten carbide powder.

Keywords: tungsten carbide, recycle process, compression test, powder metallurgy, anti-wear ability

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4 Proposed Design of an Optimized Transient Cavity Picosecond Ultraviolet Laser

Authors: Marilou Cadatal-Raduban, Minh Hong Pham, Duong Van Pham, Tu Nguyen Xuan, Mui Viet Luong, Kohei Yamanoi, Toshihiko Shimizu, Nobuhiko Sarukura, Hung Dai Nguyen


There is a great deal of interest in developing all-solid-state tunable ultrashort pulsed lasers emitting in the ultraviolet (UV) region for applications such as micromachining, investigation of charge carrier relaxation in conductors, and probing of ultrafast chemical processes. However, direct short-pulse generation is not as straight forward in solid-state gain media as it is for near-IR tunable solid-state lasers such as Ti:sapphire due to the difficulty of obtaining continuous wave laser operation, which is required for Kerr lens mode-locking schemes utilizing spatial or temporal Kerr type nonlinearity. In this work, the transient cavity method, which was reported to generate ultrashort laser pulses in dye lasers, is extended to a solid-state gain medium. Ce:LiCAF was chosen among the rare-earth-doped fluoride laser crystals emitting in the UV region because of its broad tunability (from 280 to 325 nm) and enough bandwidth to generate 3-fs pulses, sufficiently large effective gain cross section (6.0 x10⁻¹⁸ cm²) favorable for oscillators, and a high saturation fluence (115 mJ/cm²). Numerical simulations are performed to investigate the spectro-temporal evolution of the broadband UV laser emission from Ce:LiCAF, represented as a system of two homogeneous broadened singlet states, by solving the rate equations extended to multiple wavelengths. The goal is to find the appropriate cavity length and Q-factor to achieve the optimal photon cavity decay time and pumping energy for resonator transients that will lead to ps UV laser emission from a Ce:LiCAF crystal pumped by the fourth harmonics (266nm) of a Nd:YAG laser. Results show that a single ps pulse can be generated from a 1-mm, 1 mol% Ce³⁺-doped LiCAF crystal using an output coupler with 10% reflectivity (low-Q) and an oscillator cavity that is 2-mm long (short cavity). This technique can be extended to other fluoride-based solid-state laser gain media.

Keywords: rare-earth-doped fluoride gain medium, transient cavity, ultrashort laser, ultraviolet laser

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3 Relationship between Pushing Behavior and Subcortical White Matter Lesion in the Acute Phase after Stroke

Authors: Yuji Fujino, Kazu Amimoto, Kazuhiro Fukata, Masahide Inoue, Hidetoshi Takahashi, Shigeru Makita


Aim: Pusher behavior (PB) is a disorder in which stroke patients shift their body weight toward the affected side of the body (the hemiparetic side) and push away from the non-hemiparetic side. These patients often use further pushing to resist any attempts to correct their position to upright. It is known that the subcortical white matter lesion (SWML) usually correlates of gait or balance function in stroke patients. However, it is unclear whether the SWML influences PB. The purpose of this study was to investigate if the damage of SWML affects the severity of PB on acute stroke patients. Methods: Fourteen PB patients without thalamic or cortical lesions (mean age 73.4 years, 17.5 days from onset) participated in this study. Evaluation of PB was performed according to the Scale for Contraversive Pushing (SCP) for sitting and/or standing. We used modified criteria wherein the SCP subscale scores in each section of the scale were >0. As a clinical measurement, patients were evaluated by the Stroke Impairment Assessment Set (SIAS). For the depiction of SWML, we used T2-weighted fluid-attenuated inversion-recovery imaging. The degree of damage on SWML was assessed using the Fazekas scale. Patients were divided into two groups in the presence of SWML (SWML+ group; Fazekas scale grade 1-3, SWML- group; Fazekas scale grade 0). The independent t-test was used to compare the SCP and SIAS. This retrospective study was approved by the Ethics Committee. Results: In SWML+ group, the SCP was 3.7±1.0 points (mean±SD), the SIAS was 28.0 points (median). In SWML- group, the SCP was 2.0±0.2 points, and the SIAS was 31.5 points. The SCP was significantly higher in SWML+ group than in SWML- group (p<0.05). The SIAS was not significant in both groups (p>0.05). Discussion: It has been considered that the posterior thalamus is the neural structures that process the afferent sensory signals mediating graviceptive information about upright body orientation in humans. Therefore, many studies reported that PB was typically associated with unilateral lesions of the posterior thalamus. However, the result indicates that these extra-thalamic brain areas also contribute to the network controlling upright body posture. Therefore, SMWL might induce dysfunction through malperfusion in distant thalamic or other structurally intact neural structures. This study had a small sample size. Therefore, future studies should be performed with a large number of PB patients. Conclusion: The present study suggests that SWML can be definitely associated with PB. The patients with SWML may be severely incapacitating.

Keywords: pushing behavior, subcortical white matter lesion, acute phase, stroke

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2 Powder Assisted Sheet Forming to Fabricate Ti Capsule Magnetic Hyperthermia Implant

Authors: Keigo Nishitani, Kohei Mizuta Mizuta, Kazuyoshi Kurita, Yukinori Taniguchi


To establish mass production process of Ti capsule which has Fe powder inside as magnetic hyperthermia implant, we assumed that Ti thin sheet can be drawn into a φ1.0 mm die hole through the medium of Fe Powder and becomes outer shell of capsule. This study discusses mechanism of powder assisted deep drawing process by both of numerical simulation and experiment. Ti thin sheet blank was placed on die, and was covered by Fe powder layer without pressurizing. Then upper punch was indented on the Fe powder layer, and the blank can be drawn into die cavity as pressurized powder particles were extruded into die cavity from behind of the drawn blank. Distinct Element Method (DEM) has been used to demonstrate the process. To identify bonding parameters on Fe particles which are cohesion, tensile bond stress and inter particle friction angle, axial and diametrical compression failure test of Fe powder compact was conducted. Several density ratios of powder compacts in range of 0.70 - 0.85 were investigated and relationship between mean stress and equivalent stress was calculated with consideration of critical state line which rules failure criterion in consolidation of Fe powder. Since variation of bonding parameters with density ratio has been experimentally identified, and good agreement has been recognized between several failure tests and its simulation, demonstration of powder assisted sheet forming by using DEM becomes applicable. Results of simulation indicated that indent/drawing length of Ti thin sheet is promoted by smaller Fe particle size, larger indent punch diameter, lower friction coefficient between die surface and Ti sheet and certain degrees of die inlet taper angle. In the deep drawing test, we have made die-set with φ2.4 mm punch and φ1.0 mm die bore diameter. Pure Ti sheet with 100 μm thickness, annealed at 650 deg. C has been tested. After indentation, indented/drawn capsule has been observed by microscope, and its length was measured to discuss the feasibility of this capsulation process. Longer drawing length exists on progressive loading pass comparing with the case of single stroke loading. It is expected that progressive loading has an advantage of which extrusion of powder particle into die cavity with Ti sheet is promoted since powder particle layer can be rebuilt while the punch is withdrawn from the layer in each loading steps. This capsulation phenomenon is qualitatively demonstrated by DEM simulation. Finally, we have fabricated Ti capsule which has Fe powder inside for magnetic hyperthermia cancer care treatment. It is concluded that suggested method is possible to use the manufacturing of Ti capsule implant for magnetic hyperthermia cancer care.

Keywords: metal powder compaction, metal forming, distinct element method, cancer care, magnetic hyperthermia

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1 Study on Electromagnetic Plasma Acceleration Using Rotating Magnetic Field Scheme

Authors: Takeru Furuawa, Kohei Takizawa, Daisuke Kuwahara, Shunjiro Shinohara


In the field of a space propulsion, an electric propulsion system has been developed because its fuel efficiency is much higher than a conventional chemical one. However, the practical electric propulsion systems, e.g., an ion engine, have a problem of short lifetime due to a damage of generation and acceleration electrodes of the plasma. A helicon plasma thruster is proposed as a long-lifetime electric thruster which has non-direct contact electrodes. In this system, both generation and acceleration methods of a dense plasma are executed by antennas from the outside of a discharge tube. Development of the helicon plasma thruster has been conducting under the Helicon Electrodeless Advanced Thruster (HEAT) project. Our helicon plasma thruster has two important processes. First, we generate a dense source plasma using a helicon wave with an excitation frequency between an ion and an electron cyclotron frequencies, fci and fce, respectively, applied from the outside of a discharge using a radio frequency (RF) antenna. The helicon plasma source can provide a high-density (~1019 m-3), a high-ionization ratio (up to several tens of percent), and a high particle generation efficiency. Second, in order to achieve high thrust and specific impulse, we accelerate the dense plasma by the axial Lorentz force fz using the product of the induced azimuthal current jθ and the static radial magnetic field Br, shown as fz = jθ × Br. The HEAT project has proposed several kinds of electrodeless acceleration schemes, and in our particular case, a Rotating Magnetic Field (RMF) method has been extensively studied. The RMF scheme was originally developed as a concept to maintain the Field Reversed Configuration (FRC) in a magnetically confined fusion research. Here, RMF coils are expected to generate jθ due to a nonlinear effect shown below. First, the rotating magnetic field Bω is generated by two pairs of RMF coils with AC currents, which have a phase difference of 90 degrees between the pairs. Due to the Faraday’s law, an axial electric field is induced. Second, an axial current is generated by the effects of an electron-ion and an electron-neutral collisions through the Ohm’s law. Third, the azimuthal electric field is generated by the nonlinear term, and the retarding torque generated by the collision effects again. Then, azimuthal current jθ is generated as jθ = - nₑ er ∙ 2π fRMF. Finally, the axial Lorentz force fz for plasma acceleration is generated. Here, jθ is proportional to nₑ and frequency of RMF coil current fRMF, when Bω is fully penetrated into the plasma. Our previous study has achieved 19 % increase of ion velocity using the 5 MHz and 50 A of the RMF coil power supply. In this presentation, we will show the improvement of the ion velocity using the lower frequency and higher current supplied by RMF power supply. In conclusion, helicon high-density plasma production and electromagnetic acceleration by the RMF scheme with a concept of electrodeless condition have been successfully executed.

Keywords: electric propulsion, electrodeless thruster, helicon plasma, rotating magnetic field

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