Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 190

Search results for: Laura Pellegrini

190 Freshwater Lens Observation: Case Study of Laura Island, Majuro Atoll, Republic of the Marshall Islands

Authors: Kazuhisa Koda, Tsutomu Kobayashi, Rebecca Lorennji, Alington Robert, Halston DeBrum, Julious Lucky, Paul Paul

Abstract:

Atolls are low-lying small islands with highly permeable ground that does not allow rivers and lakes to develop. As the water resources on these atolls basically rely on precipitation, groundwater becomes a very important water resource during droughts. Freshwater lenses develop as groundwater on relatively large atoll islands and play a key role in the stable water supply. Atoll islands in the Pacific Ocean sometimes suffer from drought due to El Nino. The global warming effects are noticeable, particularly on atoll islands. The Republic of the Marshall Islands in Oceania is burdened with the problems common to atoll islands. About half of its population lives in the capital, Majuro, and securing water resources for these people is a crucial issue. There is a freshwater lens on the largest, Laura Island, which serves as a water source for the downtown area. A serious drought that occurred in 1998 resulted in excessive water intake from the freshwater lens on Laura Island causing up-coning. Up-coning mixes saltwater into groundwater pumped from water-intake wells. Because up-coning makes the freshwater lens unusable, there was a need to investigate the freshwater lens on Laura Island. In this study, we observed the electrical conductivities of the groundwater at different depths in existing monitoring wells to determine the total storage volume of the freshwater lens on Laura Island from 2010 to 2013. Our results indicated that most of the groundwater that seeped into the freshwater lens had flowed out into the sea.

Keywords: Atoll islands, drought, El-Nino, freshwater lens, groundwater observation

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189 Sustainable Use of Laura Lens during Drought

Authors: Kazuhisa Koda, Tsutomu Kobayashi

Abstract:

Laura Island, which is located about 50 km away from downtown, is a source of water supply in Majuro atoll, which is the capital of the Republic of the Marshall Islands. Low and flat Majuro atoll has neither river nor lake. It is very important for Majuro atoll to ensure the conservation of its water resources. However, up-coning, which is the process of partial rising of the freshwater-saltwater boundary near the water-supply well, was caused by the excess pumping from it during the severe drought in 1998. Up-coning will make the water usage of the freshwater lens difficult. Thus, appropriate water usage is required to prevent up-coning in the freshwater lens because there is no other water source during drought. Numerical simulation of water usage applying SEAWAT model was conducted at the central part of Laura Island, including the water-supply well, which was affected by up-coning. The freshwater lens was created as a result of infiltration of consistent average rainfall. The lens shape was almost the same as the one in 1985. 0 of monthly rainfall and variable daily pump discharge were used to calculate the sustainable pump discharge from the water-supply well. Consequently, the total amount of pump discharge was increased as the daily pump discharge was increased, indicating that it needs more time to recover from up-coning. Thus, a pump standard to reduce the pump intensity is being proposed, which is based on numerical simulation concerning the occurrence of the up-coning phenomenon in Laura Island during the drought.

Keywords: freshwater lens, islands, numerical simulation, sustainable water use

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188 Experimental and Simulation Results for the Removal of H2S from Biogas by Means of Sodium Hydroxide in Structured Packed Columns

Authors: Hamadi Cherif, Christophe Coquelet, Paolo Stringari, Denis Clodic, Laura Pellegrini, Stefania Moioli, Stefano Langè

Abstract:

Biogas is a promising technology which can be used as a vehicle fuel, for heat and electricity production, or injected in the national gas grid. It is storable, transportable, not intermittent and substitutable for fossil fuels. This gas produced from the wastewater treatment by degradation of organic matter under anaerobic conditions is mainly composed of methane and carbon dioxide. To be used as a renewable fuel, biogas, whose energy comes only from methane, must be purified from carbon dioxide and other impurities such as water vapor, siloxanes and hydrogen sulfide. Purification of biogas for this application particularly requires the removal of hydrogen sulfide, which negatively affects the operation and viability of equipment especially pumps, heat exchangers and pipes, causing their corrosion. Several methods are available to eliminate hydrogen sulfide from biogas. Herein, reactive absorption in structured packed column by means of chemical absorption in aqueous sodium hydroxide solutions is considered. This study is based on simulations using Aspen Plus™ V8.0, and comparisons are done with data from an industrial pilot plant treating 85 Nm3/h of biogas which contains about 30 ppm of hydrogen sulfide. The rate-based model approach has been used for simulations in order to determine the efficiencies of separation for different operating conditions. To describe vapor-liquid equilibrium, a γ/ϕ approach has been considered: the Electrolyte NRTL model has been adopted to represent non-idealities in the liquid phase, while the Redlich-Kwong equation of state has been used for the vapor phase. In order to validate the thermodynamic model, Henry’s law constants of each compound in water have been verified against experimental data. Default values available in Aspen Plus™ V8.0 for the properties of pure components properties as heat capacity, density, viscosity and surface tension have also been verified. The obtained results for physical and chemical properties are in a good agreement with experimental data. Reactions involved in the process have been studied rigorously. Equilibrium constants for equilibrium reactions and the reaction rate constant for the kinetically controlled reaction between carbon dioxide and the hydroxide ion have been checked. Results of simulations of the pilot plant purification section show the influence of low temperatures, concentration of sodium hydroxide and hydrodynamic parameters on the selective absorption of hydrogen sulfide. These results show an acceptable degree of accuracy when compared with the experimental data obtained from the pilot plant. Results show also the great efficiency of sodium hydroxide for the removal of hydrogen sulfide. The content of this compound in the gas leaving the column is under 1 ppm.

Keywords: biogas, hydrogen sulfide, reactive absorption, sodium hydroxide, structured packed column

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187 Survey of Potato Viral Infection Using Das-Elisa Method in Georgia

Authors: Maia Kukhaleishvili, Ekaterine Bulauri, Iveta Megrelishvili, Tamar Shamatava, Tamar Chipashvili

Abstract:

Plant viruses can cause loss of yield and quality in a lot of important crops. Symptoms of pathogens are variable depending on the cultivars and virus strain. Selection of resistant potato varieties would reduce the risk of virus transmission and significant economic impact. Other way to avoid reduced harvest yields is regular potato seed production sampling and testing for viral infection. The aim of this study was to determine the occurrence and distribution of viral diseases according potato cultivars for further selection of virus-free material in Georgia. During the summer 2015- 2016, 5 potato cultivars (Sante, Laura, Jelly, Red Sonia, Anushka) at 5 different farms located in Akhalkalaki were tested for 6 different potato viruses: Potato virus A (PVA), Potato virus M (PVM), Potato virus S (PVS), Potato virus X (PVX), Potato virus Y (PVY) and potato leaf roll virus (PLRV). A serological method, Double Antibody Sandwich-Enzyme linked Immunosorbent Assay (DASELISA) was used at the laboratory to analyze the results. The result showed that PVY (21.4%) and PLRV (19.7%) virus presence in collected samples was relatively high compared to others. Researched potato cultivars except Jelly and Laura were infected by PVY with different concentrations. PLRV was found only in three potato cultivars (Sante, Jelly, Red Sonia) and PVM virus (3.12%) was characterized with low prevalence. PVX, PVA and PVS virus infection was not reported. It would be noted that 7.9% of samples were containing PVY/PLRV mix infection. Based on the results it can be concluded that PVY and PLRV infections are dominant in all research cultivars. Therefore significant yield losses are expected. Systematic, long-term control of potato viral infection, especially seed-potatoes, must be regarded as the most important factor to increase seed productivity.

Keywords: virus, potato, infection, diseases

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186 Integration of LCA and BIM for Sustainable Construction

Authors: Laura Álvarez Antón, Joaquín Díaz

Abstract:

The construction industry is turning towards sustainability. It is a well-known fact that sustainability is based on a balance between environmental, social and economic aspects. In order to achieve sustainability efficiently, these three criteria should be taken into account in the initial project phases, since that is when a project can be influenced most effectively. Thus the aim must be to integrate important tools like BIM and LCA at an early stage in order to make full use of their potential. With the synergies resulting from the integration of BIM and LCA, a wider approach to sustainability becomes possible, covering the three pillars of sustainability.

Keywords: building information modeling (BIM), construction industry, design phase, life cycle assessment (LCA), sustainability

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185 West Nile Virus in North-Eastern Italy: Overview of Integrated Surveillance Activities

Authors: Laura Amato, Paolo Mulatti, Fabrizio Montarsi, Matteo Mazzucato, Laura Gagliazzo, Michele Brichese, Manlio Palei, Gioia Capelli, Lebana Bonfanti

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West Nile virus (WNV) re-emerged in north-eastern Italy in 2008, after ten years from its first appearance in Tuscany. In 2009, a national surveillance programme was implemented, and re-modulated in north-eastern Italy in 2011. Hereby, we present the results of surveillance activities in 2008-2016 in the north-eastern Italian regions, with inferences on WNV epidemiological trend in the area. The re-modulated surveillance programmes aimed at early detecting WNV seasonal reactivation by searching IgM antibodies in horses. In 2013, the surveillance plans were further modified including a risk-based approach. Spatial analysis techniques, including Bernoulli space-time scan-statistics, were applied to the results of 2010–2012 surveillance on mosquitoes, equines, and humans to identify areas where WNV reactivation was more likely to occur. From 2008 to 2016, residential horses tested positive for anti-WNV antibodies on a yearly basis (503 cases), also in areas where WNV circulation was not detected in mosquito populations. Surveillance activities detected 26 syndromic cases in horses, 102 infected mosquito pools and WNV in 18 dead wild birds. Human cases were also recurrently detected in the study area during the surveillance period (68 cases of West Nile neuroinvasive disease). The recurrent identification of WNV in animals, mosquitoes, and humans indicates the virus has likely become endemic in the area. In 2016, findings of WNV positives in horses or mosquitoes were included as triggers for enhancing screening activities in humans. The evolution of the epidemiological situation prompts for continuous and accurate surveillance measures. The results of the 2013-2016 surveillance indicate that the risk-based approach was effective in early detecting seasonal reactivation of WNV, key factor of the integrated surveillance strategy in endemic areas.

Keywords: arboviruses, horses, Italy, surveillance, west nile virus, zoonoses

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184 Dominant Ideology among Filipino Women as Dictated by Cosmopolitan Magazine

Authors: Yvonne Christelle M. de Guzman, Charity Faye T. Cabie

Abstract:

This study analyzed the contents of ten issues of Cosmopolitan Magazine from 2011 to 2015. The researcher found out the hegemony among Filipino women as dictated by Cosmopolitan magazine through the use of Semiotic Analysis, Laura Mulvey’s Male Gaze and Gramsci’s concept of hegemony. The researcher also looked at the themes of cover stories, words used to describe women, meanings behind the color of magazine’s front cover, clothing, physique and pose such as gesture and facial expression used by the cover girl. However, the entire content of the magazine was not taken into account.

Keywords: dominant ideology, male gaze, semiotics, women

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183 Traffic Study and Proposal for a Bike Lane for the University of the Basque Country

Authors: Elisabete Alberdi, Irantzu Álvarez, Laura Girón

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The objective of this work is to propose a cycle path or network of paths to the UPV/EHU Campus in Leioa. The proposal will be presented from the point of view of sustainability. In order to achieve this, the roads that are already built will be used, and the road or network will be proposed to be built with the least amount of money possible. To select the most suitable route for the bike lane, various sources of information have been used. Through this data, we analyse the transport infrastructure and the mobility around the UPV/EHU Campus in Leioa. This work aims to satisfy the mobility needs of users on the University Campus to contribute to the sustainability of the campus.

Keywords: cycle lane, sustainability, accessibility, transport, agenda 2030

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182 A Machine Learning Approach to Digital Contact Tracing

Authors: Badrinath Singhal, Chris Vorster, Di Meng, Gargi Gupta, Laura Dunne, Mark Germaine

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Contact tracing is a method used by public health organisations to try to prevent the spread of infectious diseases in the community. Traditionally performed by manual contact tracers, more recently, the use of apps has been considered utilising phone sensor data to determine the distance between two phones. In this paper, we investigate the development of machine learning approaches to determine the distance between two mobile phone devices using Bluetooth Low Energy, sensory data and meta data. We use the Tab-Net architecture and feature engineering to improve the existing state-of-the-art (total nDCF 0.21 vs 2.08), significantly outperforming existing models.

Keywords: BLE, COVID-19, contact tracing, RSSI, TabNet

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181 Microfluidic Lab on Chip Platform for the Detection of Arthritis Markers from Synovial Organ on Chip by Miniaturizing Enzyme-Linked ImmunoSorbent Assay Protocols

Authors: Laura Boschis, Elena D. Ozzello, Enzo Mastromatteo

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Point of care diagnostic finds growing interest in medicine and agri-food because of faster intervention and prevention. EliChip is a microfluidic platform to perform Point of Care immunoenzymatic assay based on ready-to-use kits and a portable instrument to manage fluidics and read reliable quantitative results. Thanks to miniaturization, analyses are faster and more sensible than conventional ELISA. EliChip is one of the crucial assets of the Europen-founded Flamingo project for in-line measuring inflammatory markers.

Keywords: lab on chip, point of care, immunoenzymatic analysis, synovial arthritis

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180 Wood Decay Fungal Strains Useful for Bio-Composite Material Production

Authors: C. Girometta, S. Babbini, R. M. Baiguera, D. S. Branciforti, M. Cartabia, D. Dondi, M. Pellegrini, A. M. Picco, E. Savino

Abstract:

Interest on wood decay fungi (WDF) has been increasing in the last year's thanks to the potentiality of this kind of fungi; research on new WDF strains has increased as well thus pointing out the key role of the culture collections. One of the most recent biotechnological application of WDF is the development of novel materials from natural or recycled resources. Based on different combinations of fungal species, substrate, and processing treatment involved (e.g. heat pressing), it is possible to achieve a wide variety of materials with different features useful for many industrial applications: from packaging to thermal and acoustic insulation. In comparison with the conventional ones, these materials represent a 100% natural and compostable alternative involving low amounts of energy in the production process. The purpose of the present work was to isolate and select WDF strains able to colonize and degrade different plant wastes thus producing a fungal biomass shapeable to achieve bio-composite materials. Strains were selected within the mycological culture collection of Pavia University (MicUNIPV, over 300 strains of WDF). The selected strains have been investigated with regards their ability to colonize and degrade plant residues from the local major cultivations (e.g. poplar, alfalfa, maize, rice, and wheat) and produce the fungal biomass. The degradation of the substrate was assessed by Thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) and Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR). Chemical characterization confirmed that TGA and FTIR are complementary techniques able to provide quality-quantitative information on compositional and structural variation that occurs during the transformation from the substrate to the bio-composite material. This pilot study provides a fundamental step to tune further applications in fungus-residues composite biomaterials.

Keywords: bio-composite material, lignocellulosic residues, sustainable materials, wood decay fungi

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179 Nutritional Value of Rabbit Meat after Contamination with 1,1-Dimethylhydrazine

Authors: Balgabay Sadepovich Maikanov, Laura Tyulegenovna Auteleyeva, Seidenova Simbat Polatbekovna

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In this article reduced nutritional value of the rabbits’ meat at 1, 1 dimethylhydrazine experimental toxicosis is shown. The assay was performed on liquid chromatograph SHIMADZU LC-20 Prominence (Japan) with fluorometric and spectrophotometric detector. This research has revealed that samples of rabbit meat of the experimental group had significant differences from the control group:in amino acids concentration from 1.2% to 9.1%; vitamin concentration from 11.2% to 60.5%, macro – minerals concentration from 17.4% to 78.1% and saturated fatty acids concentration from 17,1% to 34.5%, respectively. The decrease in the chemical composition of rabbits’ meat at 1,1 dimethylhydrazine toxicosis may be due to changes in the internal processes associated with impaired metabolic homeostasis of animals.

Keywords: 1, 1-dimethylhydrazine, metabolic homeostasis, nutritional value, rabbit meat

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178 Recognition of Early Enterococcus Faecalis through Image Treatment by Using Octave

Authors: Laura Victoria Vigoya Morales, David Rolando Suarez Mora

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The problem of detecting enterococcus faecalis is receiving considerable attention with the new cases of beachgoers infected with the bacteria, which can be found in fecal matter. The process detection of this kind of bacteria would be taking a long time, which waste time and money as a result of closing recreation place, like beach or pools. Hence, new methods for automating the process of detecting and recognition of this bacteria has become in a challenge. This article describes a novel approach to detect the enterococcus faecalis bacteria in water by using an octave algorithm, which embody a network neural. This document shows result of performance, quality and integrity of the algorithm.

Keywords: Enterococcus faecalis, image treatment, octave and network neuronal

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177 Translation and Sociolinguistics of Classical Books

Authors: Laura de Almeida

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This paper aims to present research involving the translation of classical books originally in English and translated into the Portuguese language. The objective is to analyze the linguistic varieties evident and how they appear in the other language the work was translated into. We based our study on the sociolinguistics theory, more specifically, the study of the Black English Vernacular. Our methodology is built on collecting data from the speech characters of the Black English Vernacular from some books such as The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain. On doing so, we compare the two versions of a book and how they reflected the linguistic variety. Our purpose is to show that some translators do not worry when dealing with linguistic variety. In other words, they just translate the story without taking into account some important linguistic aspects which need attention, such as language variation.

Keywords: classical books, linguistic variation, sociolinguistics, translation

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176 A Security Study for Smart Metering Systems

Authors: Musaab Hasan, Farkhund Iqbal, Patrick C. K. Hung, Benjamin C. M. Fung, Laura Rafferty

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In modern societies, the smart cities concept raised simultaneously with the projection towards adopting smart devices. A smart grid is an essential part of any smart city as both consumers and power utility companies benefit from the features provided by the power grid. In addition to advanced features presented by smart grids, there may also be a risk when the grids are exposed to malicious acts such as security attacks performed by terrorists. Considering advanced security measures in the design of smart meters could reduce these risks. This paper presents a security study for smart metering systems with a prototype implementation of the user interfaces for future works.

Keywords: security design, smart city, smart meter, smart grid, smart metering system

Procedia PDF Downloads 190
175 Thickness Measurement and Void Detection in Concrete Elements through Ultrasonic Pulse

Authors: Leonel Lipa Cusi, Enrique Nestor Pasquel Carbajal, Laura Marina Navarro Alvarado, José Del Álamo Carazas

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This research analyses the accuracy of the ultrasound and the pulse echo ultrasound technic to find voids and to measure thickness of concrete elements. These mentioned air voids are simulated by polystyrene expanded and hollow containers of thin thickness made of plastic or cardboard of different sizes and shapes. These targets are distributed strategically inside concrete at different depths. For this research, a shear wave pulse echo ultrasonic device of 50 KHz is used to scan the concrete elements. Despite the small measurements of the concrete elements and because of voids’ size are near the half of the wavelength, pre and post processing steps like voltage, gain, SAFT, envelope and time compensation were made in order to improve imaging results.

Keywords: ultrasonic, concrete, thickness, pulse echo, void

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174 Estimating Big Five Personality Expressions with a Tiered Information Framework

Authors: Laura Kahn, Paul Rodrigues, Onur Savas, Shannon Hahn

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An empirical understanding of an individual's personality expression can have a profound impact on organizations seeking to strengthen team performance and improve employee retention. A team's personality composition can impact overall performance. Creating a tiered information framework that leverages proxies for a user's social context and lexical and linguistic content provides insight into location-specific personality expression. We leverage the layered framework to examine domain-specific, psychological, and lexical cues within social media posts. We apply DistilBERT natural language transfer learning models with real world data to examine the relationship between Big Five personality expressions of people in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) fields.

Keywords: big five, personality expression, social media analysis, workforce development

Procedia PDF Downloads 43
173 Importance of Health and Social Capital to Employment Status of Indigenous Peoples in Canada

Authors: Belayet Hossain, Laura Lamb

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The study investigates the importance of health and social capital in determining the labour force status of Canada’s Indigenous population using data from 2006 Aboriginal Peoples Survey. An instrumental variable ordered probit model has been specified and estimated. The study finds that health status and social capital are important in determining Indigenous peoples’ employment status along with other factors. The results of the study imply that human resource development initiatives of Indigenous Peoples need to be broadened by including health status and social capital. Poor health and low degree of inclusion of the Indigenous Peoples need to be addressed in order to improve employment status of Canada’s Indigenous Peoples.

Keywords: labour force, human capital, social capital, aboriginal people, Canada

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172 Analysis of Preferences in Decision Making in a Bilateral Negotiation Context: An Experimental Approach from Game Theory

Authors: Laura V. Gonzalez, Juan B. Duarte, Luis A. Palacio

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Decision making can be conditioned by factors such as the environments, circumstances, behavioral biases, emotions, beliefs and preferences of the participants. The objective of this paper is to analyze the effect ‘amount of information’ and ‘number of options’, on the behavior of competitors under a bilateral negotiation context. For the above, it has been designed an experiment as a classroom game where they negotiate goods, under the condition that none of the players knows exactly the real value of the asset. The game is designed under the concept of zero-sum (non-cooperative game) and focuses on the fact that agents must anticipate the strategies of their opponent to improve their chances of winning in the negotiation. The empirical results show that, contrary to the traditional view of expected utility theory, players prefer to obtain low profits and losses, when faced with a higher expectation of losses, using sub-optimal strategies not in accordance with game theory.

Keywords: bilateral negotiation, classroom game, decision making, game theory

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171 The Experimental Investigation of Temperature Influence on the Oscillations of Particles on Liquid Surfaces

Authors: Sathish K. Gurupatham, Farhad Sayedzada, Naji Dauk, Valmiki Sooklal, Laura Ruhala

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It was shown recently that small particles and powders spontaneously disperse on liquid surfaces when they come into contact with the interface for the first time. This happens due to the combined effect of the capillary force, buoyant weight of the particle and the viscous drag that the particle experiences in the liquid. The particle undergoes oscillations normal to the interface before it comes to rest on the interface. These oscillations, in turn, induce a flow on the interface which disperses the particles radially outward. This phenomenon has a significant role in the pollination of sea plants such as Ruppia in which the formation of ‘pollen rafts’ is the first step. This paper investigates, experimentally, the influence of the temperature of the liquid on which this dispersion occurs. It was observed that the frequency of oscillations of the particles decreased with the increase in the temperature of the liquid. It is because the magnitude of capillary force also decreased when the temperature of the liquid increased.

Keywords: particle dispersion, capillary force, viscous drag, oscillations

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170 The Impact of Job Meaningfulness on the Relationships between Job Autonomy, Supportive Organizational Climate, and Job Satisfaction

Authors: Sashank Nyapati, Laura Lorente-Prieto, Maria Peiro

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The general objective of this study is to analyse the mediating role of meaningfulness in the relationships between job autonomy and job satisfaction and supportive organizational climate and job satisfaction. Theories such as the Job Characteristics Model, Conservation of Resources theory, as well as the Job Demands-Resources theory were used as theoretical framework. Data was obtained from the 5th European Working Conditions Survey (EWCS), and sample was composed of 1005 and 1000 workers from Spain and Portugal respectively. The analysis was conducted using the SOBEL Macro for SPSS (A multiple regression mediation model) developed by Preacher and Hayes in 2003. Results indicated that Meaningfulness partially mediates both the Job Autonomy-Job Satisfaction as well as the Supportive Organizational Climate-Job Satisfaction relationships. However, the percentages are large enough to draw substantial conclusions, especially that Job Meaningfulness plays an essential – if indirect – role in the amount of Satisfaction that one experiences at work. Some theoretical and practical implications are discussed.

Keywords: meaningfulness, job autonomy, supportive organizational climate, job satisfaction

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169 Technology Impact in Learning and Teaching English Language Writing

Authors: Laura Naka

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The invention of computer writing programs has changed the way of teaching second language writing. This artificial intelligence engine can provide students with feedback on their essays, on their grammatical and spelling errors, convenient writing and editing tools to facilitate student’s writing process. However, it is not yet proved if this technology is helping students to improve their writing skills. There are several programs that are of great assistance for students concerning their writing skills. New technology provides students with different software programs which enable them to be more creative, to express their opinions and ideas in words, pictures and sounds, but at the end main and most correct feedback should be given by their teachers. No matter how new technology affects in writing skills, always comes from their teachers. This research will try to present some of the advantages and disadvantages that new technology has in writing process for students. The research takes place in the University of Gjakova ‘’Fehmi Agani’’ Faculty of Education-Preschool Program. The research aims to provide random sample response by using questionnaires and observation.

Keywords: English language learning, technology, academic writing, teaching L2.

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168 Seizure Effects of FP Bearings on the Seismic Reliability of Base-Isolated Systems

Authors: Paolo Castaldo, Bruno Palazzo, Laura Lodato

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This study deals with the seizure effects of friction pendulum (FP) bearings on the seismic reliability of a 3D base-isolated nonlinear structural system, designed according to Italian seismic code (NTC08). The isolated system consists in a 3D reinforced concrete superstructure, a r.c. substructure and the FP devices, described by employing a velocity dependent model. The seismic input uncertainty is considered as a random variable relevant to the problem, by employing a set of natural seismic records selected in compliance with L’Aquila (Italy) seismic hazard as provided from NTC08. Several non-linear dynamic analyses considering the three components of each ground motion have been performed with the aim to evaluate the seismic reliability of the superstructure, substructure, and isolation level, also taking into account the seizure event of the isolation devices. Finally, a design solution aimed at increasing the seismic robustness of the base-isolated systems with FPS is analyzed.

Keywords: FP devices, seismic reliability, seismic robustness, seizure

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167 Tetraploid Induction in the Yellowtail Tetra Astyanax altiparanae

Authors: Nivaldo Ferreira do Nascimento, Matheus Pereira-Santos, Nycolas Levy-Pereira, José Augusto Senhorini, George Shigueki Yasui, Laura Satiko Okada Nakaghi

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Tetraploid individuals, which could produce diploid gametes, can be used for production of 100% triploid fish. Therefore, the aim of this study was to develop a tetraploidization protocol for A. altiparanae. We tested the effect of heat shock (40 °C; 2 min) at 16, 18, 20, 22, 24 and 26 minutes post fertilization (mpf). Untreated eggs were used as control. After hatching, ploidy status of the larvae was checked by flow cytometry. No difference were observed for the hatching rate between all treatments (P = 0.5974). However, we observed an increase in the larval abnormality in the heat shock treatments, in special at 22 (82.17 ± 6.66%) 24 (78.31 ±7.28%) and 26 mpf (79.01 ± 7.85%) in comparison with the control group (12.87 ± 4.46%). No tetraploid was observed at 16 and 18 mpf. The higher number of tetraploid individuals (52/55) was observed at 26 mpf. Our results showed that high percentages of tetraploids are obtained by heat shock (40°C; 2min) at 26 mpf, which could enable the mass production of triploid individuals in A. altiparanae.

Keywords: chromosome manipulation, polyploidy, flow cytometry, tetraploidization

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166 Volatility Transmission among European Bank CDS

Authors: Aida Alemany, Laura Ballester, Ana González-Urteaga

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From 2007 subprime crisis to the recent Eurozone debt crisis the European banking industry has experienced a terrible financial instability situation with increasing levels of CDS spreads (used as a proxy of credit risk). This paper investigates whether volatility transmission channels in European banking markets have changed after three significant crises’ events during the period January 2006 to March 2013. The global financial crisis is characterized by a unidirectional volatility shocks spillovers effect in credit risk from inside to outside the Eurozone. By contrast, the Eurozone debt crisis is revealed to be local in nature with the euro as the key element suggesting a market fragmentation between distressed peripheral and non-distressed core Eurozone countries, whereas retaining the local currency have acted as a firewall. With these findings we are able to shed light on the impact of the different crises on the European banking credit risk dynamics.

Keywords: CDS spreads, credit risk, volatility spillovers, financial crisis

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165 A Randomised Controlled Trial and Process Evaluation of the Lifestart Parenting Programme

Authors: Sharon Millen, Sarah Miller, Laura Dunne, Clare McGeady, Laura Neeson

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This paper presents the findings from a randomised controlled trial (RCT) and process evaluation of the Lifestart parenting programme. Lifestart is a structured child-centred programme of information and practical activity for parents of children aged from birth to five years of age. It is delivered to parents in their own homes by trained, paid family visitors and it is offered to parents regardless of their social, economic or other circumstances. The RCT evaluated the effectiveness of the programme and the process evaluation documented programme delivery and included a qualitative exploration of parent and child outcomes. 424 parents and children participated in the RCT: 216 in the intervention group and 208 in the control group across the island of Ireland. Parent outcomes included: parental knowledge of child development, parental efficacy, stress, social support, parenting skills and embeddedness in the community. Child outcomes included cognitive, language and motor development and social-emotional and behavioural development. Both groups were tested at baseline (when children were less than 1 year old), mid-point (aged 3) and at post-test (aged 5). Data were collected during a home visit, which took two hours. The process evaluation consisted of interviews with parents (n=16 at baseline and end-point), and focus groups with Lifestart Coordinators (n=9) and Family Visitors (n=24). Quantitative findings from the RCT indicated that, compared to the control group, parents who received the Lifestart programme reported reduced parenting-related stress, increased knowledge of their child’s development, and improved confidence in their parenting role. These changes were statistically significant and consistent with the hypothesised pathway of change depicted in the logic model. There was no evidence of any change in parents’ embeddedness in the community. Although four of the five child outcomes showed small positive change for children who took part in the programme, these were not statistically significant and there is no evidence that the programme improves child cognitive and non-cognitive skills by immediate post-test. The qualitative process evaluation highlighted important challenges related to conducting trials of this magnitude and design in the general population. Parents reported that a key incentive to take part in study was receiving feedback from the developmental assessment, which formed part of the data collection. This highlights the potential importance of appropriate incentives in relation to recruitment and retention of participants. The interviews with intervention parents indicated that one of the first changes they experienced as a result of the Lifestart programme was increased knowledge and confidence in their parenting ability. The outcomes and pathways perceived by parents and described in the interviews are also consistent with the findings of the RCT and the theory of change underpinning the programme. This hypothesises that improvement in parental outcomes, arising as a consequence of the programme, mediate the change in child outcomes. Parents receiving the Lifestart programme reported great satisfaction with and commitment to the programme, with the role of the Family Visitor being identified as one of the key components of the programme.

Keywords: parent-child relationship, parental self-efficacy, parental stress, school readiness

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164 Causes of Financial Instability and Banking Crises: A Comparative Study of Analytical Approaches

Authors: Laura Josabeth Oros-Avilés, Josefina León-León

Abstract:

In recent decades, the concern of the monetary authorities has increased because of the instability of the financial sector caused by the crash of speculative bubbles. In fact, the crash of "housing bubble" in U.S. (2007-2008) led the latest global crisis. The aim of paper is to analyze the features and causes of the financial and banking crisis from an historical view. In particular, in this research, a comparative study of some analytical approaches about economic and financial history is discussed. In addition, the role of monetary policy of central banks in managing financial crises, from its origins to today, is analyzed. According to the studied approaches, two types of factors that cause the financial instability were identified: subjective and objectives. In the research, these factors are deeply discussed, in order to noting the agreements and disagreement between the authors. Specially, it is worth noting that all of them recognized that the credit boom and the financial deregulation are the main causes of financial crises.

Keywords: asset prices, banking crises, financial bubble, financial instability, monetary policy

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163 Magnetic Properties and Cytotoxicity of Ga-Mn Magnetic Ferrites Synthesized by the Citrate Sol-Gel Method

Authors: Javier Sánchez, Laura Elena De León Prado, Dora Alicia Cortés Hernández

Abstract:

Magnetic spinel ferrites are materials that possess size, magnetic properties and heating ability adequate for their potential use in biomedical applications. The Mn0.5Ga0.5Fe2O4 magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs) were synthesized by sol-gel method using citric acid as chelating agent of metallic precursors. The synthesized samples were identified by X-Ray Diffraction (XRD) as an inverse spinel structure with no secondary phases. Saturation magnetization (Ms) of crystalline powders was 45.9 emu/g, which was higher than those corresponding to GaFe2O4 (14.2 emu/g) and MnFe2O4 (40.2 emu/g) synthesized under similar conditions, while the coercivity field (Hc) was 27.9 Oe. The average particle size was 18 ± 7 nm. The heating ability of the MNPs was enough to increase the surrounding temperature up to 43.5 °C in 7 min when a quantity of 4.5 mg of MNPs per mL of liquid medium was tested. Cytotoxic effect (hemolysis assay) of MNPs was determined and the results showed hemolytic values below 1% in all tested cases. According to the results obtained, these synthesized nanoparticles can be potentially used as thermoseeds for hyperthermia therapy.

Keywords: manganese-gallium ferrite, magnetic hyperthermia, heating ability, cytotoxicity

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162 Role of GM1 in the Interaction between Amyloid Prefibrillar Oligomers of Salmon Calcitonin and Model Membranes

Authors: Cristiano Giordani, Marco Diociaiuti, Cecilia Bombelli, Laura Zanetti-Polzi, Marcello Belfiore, Raoul Fioravanti, Gianfranco Macchia

Abstract:

We investigated induced functional effects by evaluating Ca2+-influx in liposomes and cell viability in HT22-DIFF neurons. Only solutions rich in unstructured Prefibrillar-Oligomers (PFOs) were able, in the presence of Monosialoganglioside-GM1 (GM1), to induce Ca2+-influx and were also neurotoxic, suggesting a correlation between the two phenomena. Thus, in the presence of GM1, we investigated the protein conformation and liposome modification due to the interaction. Circular Dichroism showed that GM1 fostered the formation of β-structures and Energy Filtered-Transmission Electron Microscopy that PFOs formed “amyloid-channels” as reported for Aβ. We speculate that electrostatic forces occurring between the positive PFOs and negative GM1 drive the initial binding, while the hydrophobic profile of the flexible PFO is responsible for the subsequent pore formation. Conversely, the rigid β-structured mature/fibers (MFs) and proto-fibers (PFs) were unable to induce membrane damage and Ca2+- influx.

Keywords: amyloid proteins, neurotoxicity, lipid-rafts, GM1

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161 Processes of Identities Formation and Transformation among Professional Skilled Mexican Migrants in the United States

Authors: M. Laura Vazquez Maggio, Lilia Dominguez Villalobos, Jan Luka Frey

Abstract:

This paper contributes to the understanding of the dynamic and the relational nature of identities formation among skilled middle-class migrants. Following the idea that identities are never singular, multifaceted and have a necessarily processual character, the authors specifically analyze three dimensions of the identity of qualified Mexican migrants in the US and the interplay between them. Drawing on semi-structured interviews with skilled Mexican middle-class migrants in the US, the paper explores how skilled Mexican migrants preserve their ethno-national identity (their ‘Mexicanness’) in reaction to a hostile socio-political reception context in the US. It further shows how these migrants recreate their class identity and show tendencies to distance themselves from what they perceive as lower-class Mexican migrants and the dominant popular Mexican and Latin-American cultural expressions. In a final step, it examines how the lived experience of migration itself impacts the migrants’ identities, their concept of self and feelings/modes of being and belonging.

Keywords: ethno-national identity, middle class identity, middle-class migration, migrants’ identity, skilled migration

Procedia PDF Downloads 51