Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 30

Search results for: Smita Lakhotia

30 Endometriosis: The Optimal Treatment of Recurrent Endometrioma in Infertile Patients

Authors: Smita Lakhotia, C. Kew, S. H. M. Siraj, B. Chern

Abstract:

Up to 50% of those with endometriosis may suffer from infertility due to either distorted pelvic anatomy/impaired oocyte release or inhibit ovum pickup and transport, altered peritoneal function, endocrine and anovulatory disorders, including LUF, impaired implantation, progesterone resistance or decreased levels of cellular immunity. The dilemma continues as to whether the surgery or IVF is the optimal management for such recurrent endometriomas. The core question is whether surgery adds anything of value for infertile women with recurrent endometriosis or not. Complete and detailed information on risks and benefits of treatment alternatives must be offered to patients, giving a realistic estimate of chances of success of repetitive surgery and of multiple IVF cycles in order to allow unbiased choices between different possible optionsAn individualized treatment plan should be developed taking into account patient age, duration of infertility, previous pregnancies and specific clinical conditions and wish.

Keywords: recurrent endometriosis, infertility, oocyte release, pregnancy

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29 The Impact of Female Characters on a Movie’s Return on Investment

Authors: Raghav Lakhotia, Sameer Ganu, Anshul Goel, Abhishek Kumar

Abstract:

In the age and times where women’s empowerment is a significant topic of discussion, we aim to analyze the potential gender diversity influence on box office revenues. The following research is carried out by collecting data from 400 Hollywood movies between the years 2014-2017 and performing regression analysis to find a correlation between the presence of female characters in movies and their return on investment (ROI). The paper finds that there is a positive relationship between the performance of the movies (its ROI) and the gender diversity i.e. the more the number of female characters, the higher the revenue generated. Another factor such as Number of Votes also has a direct impact on the revenue of the movie. The research not only takes into consideration the mere presence of women on screen but also the exchange of at least one dialogue among themselves, which is presented by the Bechdel Score of the movie.

Keywords: Bechdel, diversity, Hollywood, return on investment

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28 Evaluation of the Inhibitive Effect of Novel Quinoline Schiff Base on Corrosion of Mild Steel in HCl Solution

Authors: Smita Jauhari, Bhupendra Mistry

Abstract:

Schiff base (E)-2-methyl-N-(tetrazolo[1,5-a]quinolin-4-ylmethylene)aniline (QMA) was synthesized, and its inhibitive effect for mild steel in 1M HCl solution was investigated by weight loss measurement and electrochemical tests.From the weight loss measurements and electrochemical tests, it was observed that the inhibition efficiency increases with the increase in the Schiff base concentration and reaches a maximum at the optimum concentration. This is further confirmed by the decrease in corrosion rate. It is found that the system follows Langmuir adsorption isotherm.

Keywords: Schiff base, acid corrosion, electrochemical impedance spectroscopy, polarization

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27 Identifying Missing Component in the Bechdel Test Using Principal Component Analysis Method

Authors: Raghav Lakhotia, Chandra Kanth Nagesh, Krishna Madgula

Abstract:

A lot has been said and discussed regarding the rationale and significance of the Bechdel Score. It became a digital sensation in 2013, when Swedish cinemas began to showcase the Bechdel test score of a film alongside its rating. The test has drawn criticism from experts and the film fraternity regarding its use to rate the female presence in a movie. The pundits believe that the score is too simplified and the underlying criteria of a film to pass the test must include 1) at least two women, 2) who have at least one dialogue, 3) about something other than a man, is egregious. In this research, we have considered a few more parameters which highlight how we represent females in film, like the number of female dialogues in a movie, dialogue genre, and part of speech tags in the dialogue. The parameters were missing in the existing criteria to calculate the Bechdel score. The research aims to analyze 342 movies scripts to test a hypothesis if these extra parameters, above with the current Bechdel criteria, are significant in calculating the female representation score. The result of the Principal Component Analysis method concludes that the female dialogue content is a key component and should be considered while measuring the representation of women in a work of fiction.

Keywords: Bechdel test, dialogue genre, parts of speech tags, principal component analysis

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26 Review of Suitable Advanced Oxidation Processes for Degradation of Organic Compounds in Produced Water during Enhanced Oil Recovery

Authors: Smita Krishnan, Krittika Chandran, Chandra Mohan Sinnathambi

Abstract:

Produced water and its treatment and management are growing challenges in all producing regions. This water is generally considered as a nonrevenue product, but it can have significant value in enhanced oil recovery techniques if it meets the required quality standards. There is also an interest in the beneficial uses of produced water for agricultural and industrial applications. Advanced Oxidation Process is a chemical technology that has been growing recently in the wastewater treatment industry, and it is highly recommended for non-easily removal of organic compounds. The efficiency of AOPs is compound specific, therefore, the optimization of each process should be done based on different aspects.

Keywords: advanced oxidation process, photochemical processes, degradation, organic contaminants

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25 Approximation of Periodic Functions Belonging to Lipschitz Classes by Product Matrix Means of Fourier Series

Authors: Smita Sonker, Uaday Singh

Abstract:

Various investigators have determined the degree of approximation of functions belonging to the classes W(L r , ξ(t)), Lip(ξ(t), r), Lip(α, r), and Lipα using different summability methods with monotonocity conditions. Recently, Lal has determined the degree of approximation of the functions belonging to Lipα and W(L r , ξ(t)) classes by using Ces`aro-N¨orlund (C 1 .Np)- summability with non-increasing weights {pn}. In this paper, we shall determine the degree of approximation of 2π - periodic functions f belonging to the function classes Lipα and W(L r , ξ(t)) by C 1 .T - means of Fourier series of f. Our theorems generalize the results of Lal and we also improve these results in the light off. From our results, we also derive some corollaries.

Keywords: Lipschitz classes, product matrix operator, signals, trigonometric Fourier approximation

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24 Simulation of Photovoltaic Array for Specified Ratings of Converter

Authors: Smita Pareek, Ratna Dahiya

Abstract:

The power generated by solar photovoltaic (PV) module depends on surrounding irradiance, temperature, shading conditions, and shading pattern. This paper presents a simulation of photovoltaic module using Matlab/Simulink. PV Array is also simulated by series and parallel connections of modules and their characteristics curves are given. Further PV module topology/configuration are proposed for 5.5kW inverter available in the literature. Shading of a PV array either complete or partial can have a significant impact on its power output and energy yield; therefore, the simulated model characteristics curves (I-V and P-V) are drawn for uniform shading conditions (USC) and then output power, voltage and current are calculated for variation in insolation for shading conditions. Additionally the characteristics curves are also given for a predetermined shadowing condition.

Keywords: array, series, parallel, photovoltaic, partial shading

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23 Synthesis of Epoxidized Castor Oil Using a Sulphonated Polystyrene Type Cation Exchange Resin and Its Blend Preparation with Epoxy Resin

Authors: G. S. Sudha, Smita Mohanty, S. K. Nayak

Abstract:

Epoxidized oils can replace petroleum derived materials in numerous industrial applications, because of their respectable oxirane oxygen content and high reactivity of oxirane ring. Epoxidized castor oil (ECO) has synthesized in the presence of a sulphonated polystyrene type cation exchange resin. The formation of the oxirane ring was confirmed by Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR) analysis. The epoxidation reaction was evaluated by Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) studies. ECO is used as a toughening phase to increase the toughness of petroleum-based epoxy resin.

Keywords: epoxy resin, epoxidized castor oil, sulphonated polystyrene type cation exchange resin, petroleum derived materials

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22 A Conglomerate of Multiple Optical Character Recognition Table Detection and Extraction

Authors: Smita Pallavi, Raj Ratn Pranesh, Sumit Kumar

Abstract:

Information representation as tables is compact and concise method that eases searching, indexing, and storage requirements. Extracting and cloning tables from parsable documents is easier and widely used; however, industry still faces challenges in detecting and extracting tables from OCR (Optical Character Recognition) documents or images. This paper proposes an algorithm that detects and extracts multiple tables from OCR document. The algorithm uses a combination of image processing techniques, text recognition, and procedural coding to identify distinct tables in the same image and map the text to appropriate the corresponding cell in dataframe, which can be stored as comma-separated values, database, excel, and multiple other usable formats.

Keywords: table extraction, optical character recognition, image processing, text extraction, morphological transformation

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21 Degree of Approximation of Functions Conjugate to Periodic Functions Belonging to Lipschitz Classes by Product Matrix Means

Authors: Smita Sonker

Abstract:

Various investigators have determined the degree of approximation of conjugate signals (functions) of functions belonging to different classes Lipα, Lip(α,p), Lip(ξ(t),p), W(Lr,ξ(t), (β ≥ 0)) by matrix summability means, lower triangular matrix operator, product means (i.e. (C,1)(E,1), (C,1)(E,q), (E,q)(C,1) (N,p,q)(E,1), and (E,q)(N,pn) of their conjugate trigonometric Fourier series. In this paper, we shall determine the degree of approximation of 2π-periodic function conjugate functions of f belonging to the function classes Lipα and W(Lr; ξ(t); (β ≥ 0)) by (C1.T) -means of their conjugate trigonometric Fourier series. On the other hand, we shall review above-mentioned work in the light of Lenski.

Keywords: signals, trigonometric fourier approximation, class W(L^r, \xi(t), conjugate fourier series

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20 Academic Performance and Therapeutic Breathing

Authors: Abha Gupta, Seema Maira, Smita Sinha

Abstract:

This paper explores using breathing techniques to boost the academic performance of students and describes how teachers can foster the technique in their classrooms. The innovative study examines the differential impact of therapeutic breathing exercises, called pranayama, on students’ academic performance. The paper introduces approaches to therapeutic breathing exercises as an alternative to improve school performance, as well as the self-regulatory behavior, which is known to correlate with academic performance. The study was conducted in a school-wide pranayama program with positive outcomes. The intervention consisted of two breathing exercises, (1) deep breathing, and (2) alternate nostril breathing. It is a quantitative study spanning over a year with about 100 third graders was conducted using daily breathing exercises to investigate the impact of pranayama on academic performance. Significant cumulative gain-scores were found for students who practiced the approach.

Keywords: academic performance, pranayama, therapeutic breathing, yoga

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19 Effect of Depressurization Rate in Batch Foaming of Porous Microcellular Polycarbonate on Microstructure Development

Authors: Indrajeet Singh, Abhishek Gandhi, Smita Mohanty, S. K. Nayak

Abstract:

In this article, a focused study has been performed to comprehend the influence of change in depressurization rate on microcellular polycarbonate foamed morphological attributes. The depressurization rate considered in this study were 0.5, 0.05, 0.01 and 0.005 MPa/sec and the physical blowing agent utilized was carbon dioxide owing to its high solubility in polycarbonate at room temperature. The study was performed on two distinct saturation pressures, i.e., 3 MPa and 6 MPa to understand if saturation pressure has any effects on it. It is reported that with increase in depressurization rate, a higher amount of thermodynamic instability was induced which resulted in generation of larger number of smaller sized cells. This article puts forward an understanding of how depressurization rate control could be well exploited during the batch foaming process to develop high quality microcellular foamed products with exceedingly well controlled cell size.

Keywords: depressurization, porous polymer, foaming, microcellular

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18 Effect of Catalyst on Castor Oil Based Polyurethane with Different Hard/Soft Segment Ratio

Authors: Swarnalata Sahoo, Smita Mohanty, S. K. Nayak

Abstract:

Environmentally friendly Polyurethane(PU) synthesis from Castor oil(CO) has been studied extensively. Probably due to high proportion of fatty hydroxy acids and unsaturated bond, CO showed better performance than other oil, can be easily utilized as commercial applications. In this work, cured PU polymers having different –NCO/OH ratio with and without catalyst were synthesized by using partially biobased Isocyanate with castor oil (CO). Curing time has been studied by observing at the time of reaction, which can be confirmed by AT-FTIR. DSC has been studied to monitor the reaction between CO & Isocyanates using non Isothermal process. Curing kinetics have also been studied to investigate the catalytic effect of the NCO / OH ratio of Polyurethane. Adhesion properties were evaluated from Lapshear test. Tg of the PU polymer was evaluated by DSC which can be compared by DMA. Surface Properties were studied by contact angle measurement. Improvement of the interfacial adhesion between the nonpolar surface of Aluminum substrate and the polar adhesive has been studied by modifying surface.

Keywords: polyurethane, partially bio-based isocyanate, castor oil, catalyst

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17 Loss in Efficacy of Viscoelastic Ionic Liquid Surfactants under High Salinity during Surfactant Flooding

Authors: Shilpa K. Nandwani, Mousumi Chakraborty, Smita Gupta

Abstract:

When selecting surfactants for surfactant flooding during enhanced oil recovery, the most important criteria is that the surfactant system should reduce the interfacial tension between water and oil to ultralow values. In the present study, a mixture of ionic liquid surfactant and commercially available binding agent sodium tosylate has been used as a surfactant mixture. Presence of wormlike micelles indicates the possibility of achieving ultralow interfacial tension. Surface tension measurements of the mixed surfactant system have been studied. The emulsion size distribution of the mixed surfactant system at varying salinities has been studied. It has been found that at high salinities the viscoelastic surfactant system loses their efficacy and degenerate. Hence the given system may find application in low salinity reservoirs, providing good mobility to the flood during tertiary oil recovery process.

Keywords: ionic liquis, interfacial tension, Na-tosylate, viscoelastic surfactants

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16 In situ Polymerization and Properties of Biobased Polyurethane/Epoxy Interpenetrating Network Nanocomposites

Authors: Aiswarea Mathew, Smita Mohanty, Jr., S. K. Nayak

Abstract:

Polyurethane networks based on castor oil (CO) as a renewable resource polyol were synthesized. Polyurethane/epoxy resin interpenetrating network nanocomposites containing modified montmorillonite organoclay (C30B-PU/EP nanocomposites) were prepared by an in situ intercalation method. The conventional spectroscopic characterization of the synthesized samples using FT-IR confirms the existence of the proposed castor oil based PU structure and also showed that strong interactions existed between C30B and EP/PU matrix. The dispersion degree of C30B in EP/PU matrix was characterized by X-Ray diffraction (XRD) method. Scanning electronic microscopy analysis showed that the interpenetrating process of PU and EP increases the exfoliation degree of C30B, and it improves the compatibility and the phase structure of polyurethane/epoxy resin interpenetrating polymer networks (PU/EP IPNs). The thermal stability improves compared to the polyurethane when the PU/EP IPN is formed. Mechanical properties including the Young’s modulus and tensile strength reflected marked improvement with addition of C30B.

Keywords: castor oil, epoxy, montmorillonite, polyurethane

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15 Mutual Information Based Image Registration of Satellite Images Using PSO-GA Hybrid Algorithm

Authors: Dipti Patra, Guguloth Uma, Smita Pradhan

Abstract:

Registration is a fundamental task in image processing. It is used to transform different sets of data into one coordinate system, where data are acquired from different times, different viewing angles, and/or different sensors. The registration geometrically aligns two images (the reference and target images). Registration techniques are used in satellite images and it is important in order to be able to compare or integrate the data obtained from these different measurements. In this work, mutual information is considered as a similarity metric for registration of satellite images. The transformation is assumed to be a rigid transformation. An attempt has been made here to optimize the transformation function. The proposed image registration technique hybrid PSO-GA incorporates the notion of Particle Swarm Optimization and Genetic Algorithm and is used for finding the best optimum values of transformation parameters. The performance comparision obtained with the experiments on satellite images found that the proposed hybrid PSO-GA algorithm outperforms the other algorithms in terms of mutual information and registration accuracy.

Keywords: image registration, genetic algorithm, particle swarm optimization, hybrid PSO-GA algorithm and mutual information

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14 Development of Closed System for Bacterial CO2 Mitigation

Authors: Somesh Misha, Smita Raghuvanshi, Suresh Gupta

Abstract:

Increasing concentration of green house gases (GHG's), such as CO2 is of major concern and start showing its impact nowadays. The recent studies are focused on developing the continuous system using photoautotrophs for CO2 mitigation and simultaneous production of primary and secondary metabolites as a value addition. The advent of carbon concentrating mechanism had blurred the distinction between autotrophs and heterotrophs and now the paradigm has shifted towards the carbon capture and utilization (CCU) rather than carbon capture and sequestration (CCS). In the present work, a bioreactor was developed utilizing the chemolithotrophic bacterial species using CO2 mitigation and simultaneous value addition. The kinetic modeling was done and the biokinetic parameters are obtained for developing the bioreactor. The bioreactor was developed and studied for its operation and performance in terms of volumetric loading rate, mass loading rate, elimination capacity and removal efficiency. The characterization of effluent from the bioreactor was carried out for the products obtained using the analyzing techniques such as FTIR, GC-MS, and NMR. The developed bioreactor promised an economic, efficient and effective solution for CO2 mitigation and simultaneous value addition.

Keywords: CO2 mitigation, bio-reactor, chemolithotrophic bacterial species, FTIR, GC-MS, NMR

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13 Evaluation of Excision Wound Healing Activity of Ethanolic Extract of Michelia Champaca ın Diabetic Wistar Rats

Authors: Smita Shenoy, Amoolya Gowda, Tara Shanbhag, Krishnananda Prabhu, Venumadhav Nelluri

Abstract:

The study was undertaken to assess the effect of ethanolic extract of Michelia champaca on excision wound healing in diabetic wistar rats. Excision wound was made in five groups of rats after inducing diabetes with streptozotocin in four groups. Paraffin was applied to wounds in nondiabetic and diabetic control and 2.5%, 5%, 10% ointment of extract to wounds in three diabetic test groups. Monitoring of wound contraction rate, the period of epithelization and histopathological examination of granulation tissue was done. There was a significant (p < 0.05) decrease in the period of epithelization and a significant increase in the wound contraction rate on day 12 and 16 in rats treated with 5% and 10% ointment as compared to diabetic rats. There was a better organization of collagen fibers in the granulation tissue of wounds treated with 10% ointment. The higher dose of ethanolic extract of Michelia champaca promoted wound healing in diabetic Wistar rats.

Keywords: Michelia champaca, excision wound, contraction, epithelization

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12 Exploratory Study of Community Interaction Project in Environment Education for Youth

Authors: Archana Vadeyar, Smita Phatak

Abstract:

Nurturing flora and fauna is the crux of Environment Education yet one tends to forget to nurture the human minds. Youth education presently is too academic, exam oriented and lacks all-round development. A project is whole-hearted purposeful activity proceeding in a social environment. Projects at +2 stages have become, just an easier way of securing marks. The purpose of this study was to explore the concept of an experiential environment education (EE) project for youth involving community interaction. Youth were encouraged to plan activities for children-based on EE through General knowledge (GK), language, math, science, fun games, quiz, sports, art and craft, stories. A purposive sample of 73 students was administered a self-prepared and validated questionnaire; supported by content analysis of reports from EE Journals of 21 students and some photos. Responses of students revealed that project was a joyful and motivating experience, with learnings and realizations, developed concern for others, made them feel responsible, happy and contented. Community interaction programs need to be included in the regular schedule to add more meaning to EE projects and cater to the needs of adolescents for diverting youth energy towards positive action.

Keywords: experiential, project, environment education, youth, community interaction

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11 Synthesis and Characterization of Renewable Resource Based Green Epoxy Coating

Authors: Sukanya Pradhan, Smita Mohanty, S. K Nayak

Abstract:

Plant oils are a great renewable source for being a reliable starting material to access new products with a wide spectrum of structural and functional variations. Even though petroleum products might also render the same, but it would also impose a high risk factor of environmental and health hazard. Since epoxidized vegetable oils are easily available, eco-compatible, non-toxic and renewable, hence these have drawn much of the attentions in the polymer industrial sector especially for the development of eco-friendly coating materials. In this study a waterborne epoxy coating was prepared from epoxidized soyabean oil by using triethanolamine. Because of its hydrophobic nature, it was a tough and tedius task to make it hydrophilic. The hydrophobic biobased epoxy was modified into waterborne epoxy by the help of a plant based anhydride as curing agent. Physico-mechanical, chemical resistance tests and thermal analysis of the green coating material were carried out which showed good physic-mechanical, chemical resistance properties as well as environment friendly. The complete characterization of the final material was done in terms of scratch hardness, gloss test, impact resistance, adhesion and bend test.

Keywords: epoxidized soybean oil, waterborne, curing agent, green coating

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10 Biobased Polyurethane Derived from Transesterified Castor Oil: Synthesis and Charecterization

Authors: Sonalee Das, Smita Mohanty, S. K. Nayak

Abstract:

Recent years has witnessed the increasing demand for natural resources and products in polyurethane synthesis because of global warming, sustainable development and oil crisis. For this purpose, different plant oils such as soybean oil, castor oil and linseed oil are extensively used. Moreover, the isocyanate used for the synthesis of polyurethane is derived from petroleum resources. In this present work attempts have been made for the successful synthesis of biobased isocyanate from castor oil with partially biobased isocyanate in presence of catalyst dibutyltin dilaurate (DBTDL). The goal of the present study was to investigate the thermal, mechanical, morphological and chemical properties of the synthesized polyurethane in terms of castor oil modification. The transesterified polyol shows broad and higher hydroxyl value as compared to castor oil which was confirmed by FTIR studies. The FTIR studies also revealed the successful synthesis of bio based polyurethane by showing characteristic peaks at 3300cm-1, 1715cm-1 and 1532cm-1 respectively. The TGA results showed three step degradation mechanism for the synthesized polyurethane from modified and unmodified castor oil. However, the modified polyurethane exhibited higher degradation temperature as compared to unmodified one. The mechanical properties also demonstrated higher tensile strength for modified polyurethane as compared to unmodified one.

Keywords: castor oil, partially biobased Isocyanate, polyurethane synthesis, FTIR

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9 Dynamics of India's Nuclear Identity

Authors: Smita Singh

Abstract:

Through the constructivist perspective, this paper explores the transformation of India’s nuclear identity from an irresponsible nuclear weapon power to a ‘de-facto nuclear power’ in the emerging international nuclear order From a nuclear abstainer to a bystander and finally as a ‘de facto nuclear weapon state’, India has put forth its case as a unique and exceptional nuclear power as opposed to Iran, Iraq and North Korea with similar nuclear ambitions, who have been snubbed as ‘rogue states’ by the international community. This paper investigates the reasons behind international community’s gradual acceptance of India’s nuclear weapons capabilities and nuclear identity after the Indo-U.S. Nuclear Deal. In this paper, the central concept of analysis is the inter-subjective nature of identity in the nuclear arena. India’s nuclear behaviour has been discursively constituted by India through evolving images of the ‘self’ and the ‘other.’ India’s sudden heightened global status is not solely the consequence of its 1998 nuclear tests but a calibrated projection as a responsible stakeholder in other spheres such as economic potential, market prospects, democratic credentials and so on. By examining India’s nuclear discourse this paper contends that India has used its material and discursive power in presenting a n striking image as a responsible nuclear weapon power (though not yet a legal nuclear weapon state as per the NPT). By historicising India’s nuclear trajectory through an inter-subjective analysis of identities, this paper moves a step ahead in providing a theoretical interpretation of state actions and nuclear identity construction.

Keywords: nuclear identity, India, constructivism, international stakeholder

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8 Technology Transfer of Indigenous Technologies: Emerging Aid to Indian Health Sector

Authors: Tripta Dixit, Smita Sahu, William Selvamurthy, Sadhana Srivastava

Abstract:

India is battling with the issues of accessibility, affordability and availability of quality health to the masses. Indian medical heritage which dated back to 3000 BC unveils the rich knowledge pool which has undergone a perceptible change over years, such as eradication of many communicable diseases, increasing individual awareness of quality health and import driven medical device market etc. Despite a slew of initiatives the holistic slogan of ‘health for all’ remains elusive and a concern for the nation. The 21st-century projects a myriad of challenges like cultural diversity, large population, demographic dividend and geographical segmentation leading to varied needs of people as per their regional conditions of climate, disease prevalence, nutrition and sanitation. But these challenges are also opportunities for the development of indigenous, low cost and accessible technologies to tackle them. This requires reinforcing the potential of indigenous technologies in coordination with prevailing health issues in various regions of country. This paper emphasis on the strategy for exploring the indigenous technologies with entrusted up-scaling to meet the diverse needs of the people. This review proposes to adopt technology transfer as a strategy to establish a vibrant ecosystem for identifying and up-scaling the indigenous medical technologies with diligent hand-holding for public health.

Keywords: health, indigenous, medical technology, technology transfer

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7 Re-Imagining and De-Constructing the Global Security Architecture

Authors: Smita Singh

Abstract:

The paper develops a critical framework to the hegemonic discourses resorted to by the dominant powers in the global security architecture. Within this framework, security is viewed as a discourse through which identities and threats are represented and produced to legitimize the security concerns of few at the cost of others. International security have long been driven and dominated by power relations. Since the end of the Cold War, the global transformations have triggered contestations to the idea of security at both theoretical and practical level. These widening and deepening of the concept of security have challenged the existing power hierarchies at the theoretical level but not altered the substance and actors defining it. When discourses are introduced into security studies, several critical questions erupt: how has power shaped security policies of the globe through language? How does one understand the meanings and impact of those discourses? Who decides the agenda, rules, players and outliers of the security? Language as a symbolic system and form of power is fluid and not fixed. Over the years the dominant Western powers, led by the United States of America have employed various discursive practices such as humanitarian intervention, responsibility to protect, non proliferation, human rights, war on terror and so on to reorient the constitution of identities and interests and hence the policies that need to be adopted for its actualization. These power relations are illustrated in this paper through the narratives used in the nonproliferation regime. The hierarchical security dynamics is a manifestation of the global power relations driven by many factors including discourses.

Keywords: hegemonic discourse, global security, non-proliferation regime, power politics

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6 A Case Study on Indian Translation Ecosystem of Point-Of-Care Solutions

Authors: Tripta Dixit, Smita Sahu, William Selvamurthy, Sadhana Srivastava

Abstract:

The translation of healthcare technologies is an expensive, complex affair, current healthcare challenges in Asian countries and their efforts to meet Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), necessitates continuous technology advancement to save countless lives, improve the quality of life and for socio-economic development. India’s consistently improving global innovation index (57) demonstrates its innovation potential, but access to health care is asymmetric and lacks priority in India. Therefore, there is utmost need of a robust translation system for point-of-care (POC) solutions, inexpensive, low-maintenance, reliable, and easy-to-use diagnostic technologies. Few cases of POC technologies viz. Elisa based diagnostic kits for regional viral disease, a device for detection of cancerous lesions were studied to understand the process and challenges involved in their translation. Accordingly, the entire translation ecosystem was summarized proposing a nexus of various actors such as technology developer, technology transferor technology receiver, funding entities, government/regulatory bodies and their effect on translation of different medical technologies. This study highlights the role and concerns pertaining to these actors for POC such as unsystematic and unvalidated research roadmap, low profit preposition, unfocused approach of up-scaling, low market acceptability and multiple window regulatory framework, etc. This provides an opportunity to devise solutions to overcome problem areas in translation path.

Keywords: healthcare technologies, point-of-care solutions, public health, translation

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5 Quantifying the Impact of Intermittent Signal Priority given to BRT on Ridership and Climate-A Case Study of Ahmadabad

Authors: Smita Chaudhary

Abstract:

Traffic in India are observed uncontrolled, and are characterized by chaotic (not follows the lane discipline) traffic situation. Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) has emerged as a viable option to enhance transportation capacity and provide increased levels of mobility and accessibility. At present in Ahmadabad there are as many intersections which face the congestion and delay at signalized intersection due to transit (BRT) lanes. Most of the intersection in spite of being signalized is operated manually due to the conflict between BRT buses and heterogeneous traffic. Though BRTS in Ahmadabad has an exclusive lane of its own but with this comes certain limitations which Ahmadabad is facing right now. At many intersections in Ahmadabad due to these conflicts, interference, and congestion both heterogeneous traffic as well as transit buses suffer traffic delays of remarkable 3-4 minutes at each intersection which has a become an issue of great concern. There is no provision of BRT bus priority due to which existing signals have their least role to play in managing the traffic that ultimately call for manual operation. There is an immense decrement in the daily ridership of BRTS because people are finding this transit mode no more time saving in their routine, there is an immense fall in ridership ultimately leading to increased number of private vehicles, idling of vehicles at intersection cause air and noise pollution. In order to bring back these commuters’ transit facilities need to be improvised. Classified volume count survey, travel time delay survey was conducted and revised signal design was done for whole study stretch having three intersections and one roundabout, later one intersection was simulated in order to see the effect of giving priority to BRT on side street queue length and travel time for heterogeneous traffic. This paper aims at suggesting the recommendations in signal cycle, introduction of intermittent priority for transit buses, simulation of intersection in study stretch with proposed signal cycle using VISSIM in order to make this transit amenity feasible and attracting for commuters in Ahmadabad.

Keywords: BRT, priority, Ridership, Signal, VISSIM

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4 Preparation and Properties of Polylactic Acid/MDI Modified Thermoplastic Starch Blends

Authors: Sukhila Krishnan, Smita Mohanty, Sanjay K. Nayak

Abstract:

Polylactide (PLA) and thermoplastic starch (TPS) are the most promising bio-based materials presently available on the market. Polylactic acid is one of the versatile biodegradable polyester showing wide range of applications in various fields and starch is a biopolymer which is renewable, cheap as well as extensively available. The usual increase in the cost of petroleum-based commodities in the next decades opens bright future for these materials. Their biodegradability and compostability was an added advantage in applications that are difficult to recycle. Currently, thermoplastic starch (TPS) has been used as a substitute for synthetic plastic in several commercial products. But, TPS shows some limitations mainly due to its brittle and hydrophilic nature, which has to be resolved to widen its application.The objective of the work we report here was to initiate chemical modifications on TPS and to build up a process to control its chemical structure using a solution process which can reduce its water sensitive properties and then blended it with PLA to improve compatibility between PLA and TPS. The method involves in cleavage of starch amylose and amylopectin chain backbone to plasticize with glycerol and water in batch mixer and then the prepared TPS was reacted in solution with diisocyanates i.e, 4,4'-Methylenediphenyl Diisocyanate (MDI).This diisocyanate was used before with great success for the chemical modification of TPS surface. The method utilized here will form an urethane-linkages between reactive isocyanate groups (–NCO) and hydroxyl groups (-OH) of starch as well as of glycerol. New polymer synthesised shows a reduced crystallinity, less hydrophilic and enhanced compatibility with other polymers. The TPS was prepared by Haake Rheomix 600 batch mixer with roller rotors operating at 50 rpm. The produced material is then refluxed for 5hrs with MDI in toluene with constant stirring. Finally, the modified TPS was melt blended with PLA in different compositions. Blends obtained shows an improved mechanical properties. These materials produced are characterized by Fourier Transform Infrared Spectra (FTIR), DSC, X-Ray diffraction and mechanical tests.

Keywords: polylactic acid, thermoplastic starch, Methylenediphenyl Diisocyanate, Polylactide (PLA)

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3 Selective Conversion of Biodiesel Derived Glycerol to 1,2-Propanediol over Highly Efficient γ-Al2O3 Supported Bimetallic Cu-Ni Catalyst

Authors: Smita Mondal, Dinesh Kumar Pandey, Prakash Biswas

Abstract:

During past two decades, considerable attention has been given to the value addition of biodiesel derived glycerol (~10wt.%) to make the biodiesel industry economically viable. Among the various glycerol value-addition methods, hydrogenolysis of glycerol to 1,2-propanediol is one of the attractive and promising routes. In this study, highly active and selective γ-Al₂O₃ supported bimetallic Cu-Ni catalyst was developed for selective hydrogenolysis of glycerol to 1,2-propanediol in the liquid phase. The catalytic performance was evaluated in a high-pressure autoclave reactor. The formation of mixed oxide indicated the strong interaction of Cu, Ni with the alumina support. Experimental results demonstrated that bimetallic copper-nickel catalyst was more active and selective to 1,2-PDO as compared to monometallic catalysts due to bifunctional behavior. To verify the effect of calcination temperature on the formation of Cu-Ni mixed oxide phase, the calcination temperature of 20wt.% Cu:Ni(1:1)/Al₂O₃ catalyst was varied from 300°C-550°C. The physicochemical properties of the catalysts were characterized by various techniques such as specific surface area (BET), X-ray diffraction study (XRD), temperature programmed reduction (TPR), and temperature programmed desorption (TPD). The BET surface area and pore volume of the catalysts were in the range of 71-78 m²g⁻¹, and 0.12-0.15 cm³g⁻¹, respectively. The peaks at the 2θ range of 43.3°-45.5° and 50.4°-52°, was corresponded to the copper-nickel mixed oxidephase [JCPDS: 78-1602]. The formation of mixed oxide indicated the strong interaction of Cu, Ni with the alumina support. The crystallite size decreased with increasing the calcination temperature up to 450°C. Further, the crystallite size was increased due to agglomeration. Smaller crystallite size of 16.5 nm was obtained for the catalyst calcined at 400°C. Total acidic sites of the catalysts were determined by NH₃-TPD, and the maximum total acidic of 0.609 mmol NH₃ gcat⁻¹ was obtained over the catalyst calcined at 400°C. TPR data suggested the maximum of 75% degree of reduction of catalyst calcined at 400°C among all others. Further, 20wt.%Cu:Ni(1:1)/γ-Al₂O₃ catalyst calcined at 400°C exhibited highest catalytic activity ( > 70%) and 1,2-PDO selectivity ( > 85%) at mild reaction condition due to highest acidity, highest degree of reduction, smallest crystallite size. Further, the modified Power law kinetic model was developed to understand the true kinetic behaviour of hydrogenolysis of glycerol over 20wt.%Cu:Ni(1:1)/γ-Al₂O₃ catalyst. Rate equations obtained from the model was solved by ode23 using MATLAB coupled with Genetic Algorithm. Results demonstrated that the model predicted data were very well fitted with the experimental data. The activation energy of the formation of 1,2-PDO was found to be 45 kJ mol⁻¹.

Keywords: glycerol, 1, 2-PDO, calcination, kinetic

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2 Sattriya: Its Transformation as a Principal Medium of Preaching Vaishnava Religion to Performing Art

Authors: Smita Lahkar

Abstract:

Sattriya, the youngest of the eight principal Classical Indian dance traditions, has undergone too many changes and modifications to arrive at its present stage of performing art form extracting itself from age-old religious confinement. Although some of the other traditions have been revived in the recent past, Sattriya has a living tradition since its inception in the 15th century by Srimanta Sankardeva, the great Vaishnavite saint, poet, playwright, lyricist, painter, singer and dancer of Assam, a primary north-eastern state of India. This living dance tradition from the Sattras, the Vaishnavite monasteries, has been practiced for over five hundred years by celibate male monks, as a powerful medium for propagating the Vaishnava religious faith. Sankardeva realised the potential of the vocalised word integrated with the visual image as a powerful medium of expression and communication. So he used this principal medium for propagating his newly found message of devotion among the people of his time. Earlier, Sattriya was performed by male monks alone in monasteries (Sattras) as a part of daily rituals. The females were not even allowed to learn this art form. But, in present time, Sattriya has come out from the Sattras to proscenium stage, performed mostly by female as well as few male dancers also. The technique of performing movements, costumes, ornaments, music and style of performance too have experienced too many changes and modifications. For example, earlier and even today in Sattra, the ‘Pataka’ hand gesture is depicted in conformity with the original context (religious) of creation of the dance form. But, today stage-performers prefer the instructions of the scripture ‘Srihastamuktavali’ and depict the ‘Pataka’ in a sophisticated manner affecting decontextualisation to a certain extent. This adds aesthetic beauty to the dance form as an art distancing it from its context of being a vehicle for propagating Vaishnava religion. The Sattriya dance today stands at the crossroads of past and future, tradition and modernity, devotion and display, spirituality and secularism. The traditional exponents trained under the tutelage of Sattra maestros and imbibing a devotionally inspired rigour of the religion, try to retain the traditional nuances; while the young artists being trained outside the monasteries are more interested in taking up the discipline purely from the perspective of ‘performing arts’ bereft of the philosophy of religion or its sacred associations. Hence, this paper will be an endeavor to establish the hypothesis that the Sattriya, whose origin was for propagating Vaishnava faith, has now entered the world of performing arts with highly aesthetical components. And as a transformed art form, Sattriya may be expected to carve a niche in world dance arena. This will be done with the help of historical evidences, observations from the recorded past and expert rendezvous.

Keywords: dance, performing art, religion, Sattriya

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1 Sensory Weighting and Reweighting for Standing Postural Control Among Children and Adolescents with Autistic Spectrum Disorder Compared with Typically Developing Children and Adolescents

Authors: Eglal Y. Ali, Smita Rao, Anat Lubetzky, Wen Ling

Abstract:

Background: Postural abnormalities, rigidity, clumsiness, and frequent falls are common among children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). The central nervous system’s ability to process all reliable sensory inputs (weighting) and disregard potentially perturbing sensory input (reweighting) is critical for successfully maintaining standing postural control. This study examined how sensory inputs (visual and somatosensory) are weighted and reweighted to maintain standing postural control in children with ASD compared with typically developing (TD) children. Subjects: Forty (20 (TD) and 20 ASD) children and adolescents participated in this study. The groups were matched for age, weight, and height. Participants had normal somatosensory (no somatosensory hypersensitivity), visual, and vestibular perception. Participants with ASD were categorized with severity level 1 according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-V) and Social Responsiveness Scale. Methods: Using one force platform, the center of pressure (COP) was measured during quiet standing for 30 seconds, 3 times first standing on a stable surface with eyes open (Condition 1), followed by randomization of the following 3 conditions: Condition 2 standing on a stable surface with eyes closed, (visual input perturbed); Condition 3 standing on a compliant foam surface with eyes open, (somatosensory input perturbed); and Condition 4 standing on compliant foam surface with eyes closed, (both visual and somatosensory inputs perturbed). Standing postural control was measured by three outcome measures: COP sway area, COP anterior-posterior (AP), and mediolateral (ML) path length (PL). A repeated measure mixed model Analysis of Variance was conducted to determine whether there was a significant difference between the two groups in the mean of the three outcome measures across the four conditions. Results: According to all three outcome measures, both groups showed a gradual increase in postural sway from condition 1 to condition 4. However, TD participants showed a larger postural sway than thosewith ASD. There was a significant main effect of condition on three outcome measures (p< 0.05). Only the COP AP PL showed a significant main effect of the group (p<0.05) and a significant group by condition interaction (p<0.05). In COP AP PL, TD participants showed a significant difference between condition 2 and the baseline (p<0.05), whereas the ASD group did not. This suggests that the ASD group did not weight visual input as much as the TD group. A significant difference between conditions for the ASD group was seen only when participants stood on foam regardless of the visual condition, suggesting that the ASD group relied more on the somatosensory inputs to maintain the standing postural control. Furthermore, the ASD group exhibited significantly smaller postural sway compared with TD participants during standing on the stable surface, whereas the postural sway of the ASD group was close to that of the TD group on foam. Conclusion: These results suggest that participants with high functioning ASD (level 1, no somatosensory hypersensitivity in ankles and feet) over-rely on somatosensory inputs anduse astiffening strategy for standing postural control. this deviation in the reweighting mechanism might explain the postural abnormalities mentioned above among children with ASD.

Keywords: autism spectrum disorders, postural sway, sensory weighting and reweighting, standing postural control

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