Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 2480

Publications

2480 Numerical Investigation of the Jacketing Method of Reinforced Concrete Column

Authors: S. Boukais, A. Nekmouche, N. Khelil, A. Kezmane

Abstract:

The first intent of this study is to develop a finite element model that can predict correctly the behavior of the reinforced concrete column. Second aim is to use the finite element model to investigate and evaluate the effect of the strengthening method by jacketing of the reinforced concrete column, by considering different interface contact between the old and the new concrete. Four models were evaluated, one by considering perfect contact, the other three models by using friction coefficient of 0.1, 0.3 and 0.5. The simulation was carried out by using Abaqus software. The obtained results show that the jacketing reinforcement led to significant increase of the global performance of the behavior of the simulated reinforced concrete column.

Keywords: Strengthening, ABAQUS, reinforced concrete column, jacketing

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2479 Environmental Impact of Autoclaved Aerated Concrete in Modern Construction: A Case Study from the New Egyptian Administrative Capital

Authors: Esraa A. Khalil, Mohamed N. AbouZeid

Abstract:

Building materials selection is critical for the sustainability of any project. The choice of building materials has a huge impact on the built environment and cost of projects. Building materials emit huge amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) due to the use of cement as a basic component in the manufacturing process and as a binder, which harms our environment. Energy consumption from buildings has increased in the last few years; a huge amount of energy is being wasted from using unsustainable building and finishing materials, as well as from the process of heating and cooling of buildings. In addition, the construction sector in Egypt is taking a good portion of the economy; however, there is a lack of awareness of buildings environmental impacts on the built environment. Using advanced building materials and different wall systems can help in reducing heat consumption, the project’s initial and long-term costs, and minimizing the environmental impacts. Red Bricks is one of the materials that are being used widely in Egypt. There are many other types of bricks such as Autoclaved Aerated Concrete (AAC); however, the use of Red Bricks is dominating the construction industry due to its affordability and availability. This research focuses on the New Egyptian Administrative Capital as a case study to investigate the potential of the influence of using different wall systems such as AAC on the project’s cost and the environment. The aim of this research is to conduct a comparative analysis between the traditional and most commonly used bricks in Egypt, which is Red Bricks, and AAC wall systems. Through an economic and environmental study, the difference between the two wall systems will be justified to encourage the utilization of uncommon techniques in the construction industry to build more affordable, energy efficient and sustainable buildings. The significance of this research is to show the potential of using AAC in the construction industry and its positive influences. The study analyzes the factors associated with choosing suitable building materials for different projects according to the need and criteria of each project and its nature without harming the environment and wasting materials that could be saved or recycled. The New Egyptian Administrative Capital is considered as the country’s new heart, where ideas regarding energy savings and environmental benefits are taken into consideration. Meaning that, Egypt is taking good steps to move towards more sustainable construction. According to the analysis and site visits, there is a potential in reducing the initial costs of buildings by 12.1% and saving energy by using different techniques up to 25%. Interviews with the mega structures project engineers and managers reveal that they are more open to introducing sustainable building materials that will help in saving the environment and moving towards green construction as well as to studying more effective techniques for energy conservation.

Keywords: Environmental Impact, Building Material, Modern Construction, AAC blocks, new Egyptian administrative capital

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2478 A Study of the Alumina Distribution in the Lab-Scale Cell during Aluminum Electrolysis

Authors: Olga Tkacheva, Pavel Arkhipov, Alexey Rudenko, Yurii Zaikov

Abstract:

The aluminum electrolysis process in the conventional cryolite-alumina electrolyte with cryolite ratio of 2.7 was carried out at an initial temperature of 970 °C and the anode current density of 0.5 A/cm2 in a 15A lab-scale cell in order to study the formation of the side ledge during electrolysis and the alumina distribution between electrolyte and side ledge. The alumina contained 35.97% α-phase and 64.03% γ-phase with the particles size in the range of 10-120 μm. The cryolite ratio and the alumina concentration were determined in molten electrolyte during electrolysis and in frozen bath after electrolysis. The side ledge in the electrolysis cell was formed only by the 13th hour of electrolysis. With a slight temperature decrease a significant increase in the side ledge thickness was observed. The basic components of the side ledge obtained by the XRD phase analysis were Na3AlF6, Na5Al3F14, Al2O3, and NaF.5CaF2.AlF3. As in the industrial cell, the increased alumina concentration in the side ledge formed on the cell walls and at the ledge-electrolyte-aluminum three-phase boundary during aluminum electrolysis in the lab cell was found (FTP No 05.604.21.0239, IN RFMEFI60419X0239).

Keywords: alumina, alumina distribution, aluminum electrolyzer, side ledge, cryolite-alumina electrolyte

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2477 Evaluation of Underground Water Flow into Tabriz Metro Tunnel First Line by Hydro-Mechanical Coupling Analysis

Authors: L. Nikakhtar, S. Zare

Abstract:

One of the main practical difficulties attended with tunnel construction is related to underground water. Uncontrolled water behavior may cause extra loads on the lining, mechanical instability, and unfavorable environmental problems. Estimating underground water inflow rate to the tunnels is a complex skill. The common calculation methods are: empirical methods, analytical solutions, numerical solutions based on the equivalent continuous porous media. In this research the rate of underground water inflow to the Tabriz metro first line tunnel has been investigated by numerical finite difference method using FLAC2D software. Comparing results of Heuer analytical method and numerical simulation showed good agreement with each other. Fully coupled and one-way coupled hydro mechanical states as well as water-free conditions in the soil around the tunnel are used in numerical models and these models have been applied to evaluate the loading value on the tunnel support system. Results showed that the fully coupled hydro mechanical analysis estimated more axial forces, moments and shear forces in linings, so this type of analysis is more conservative and reliable method for design of tunnel lining system. As sensitivity analysis, inflow water rates into the tunnel were evaluated in different soil permeability, underground water levels and depths of the tunnel. Result demonstrated that water level in constant depth of the tunnel is more sensitive factor for water inflow rate to the tunnel in comparison of other parameters investigated in the sensitivity analysis.

Keywords: FLAC2D, inflow rate, Coupled hydro mechanical analysis, Tabriz Metro

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2476 Statistical Approach to Identify Stress and Biases Impairing Decision-Making in High-Risk Industry

Authors: Ph. Fauquet-Alekhine

Abstract:

Decision-making occurs several times an hour when working in high risk industry and an erroneous choice might have undesirable outcomes for people and the environment surrounding the industrial plant. Industrial decisions are very often made in a context of acute stress. Time pressure is a crucial stressor leading decision makers sometimes to boost up the decision-making process and if it is not possible then shift to the simplest strategy. We thus found it interesting to update the characterization of the stress factors impairing decision-making at Chinon Nuclear Power Plant (France) in order to optimize decision making contexts and/or associated processes. The investigation was based on the analysis of reports addressing safety events over the last 3 years. Among 93 reports, those explicitly addressing decision-making issues were identified. Characterization of each event was undertaken in terms of three criteria: stressors, biases impairing decision making and weaknesses of the decision-making process. The statistical analysis showed that biases were distributed over 10 possibilities among which the hypothesis confirmation bias was clearly salient. No significant correlation was found between criteria. The analysis indicated that the main stressor was time pressure and highlights an unexpected form of stressor: the trust asymmetry principle of the expert. The analysis led to the conclusion that this stressor impaired decision-making from a psychological angle rather than from a physiological angle: it induces defensive bias of self-esteem, self-protection associated with a bias of confirmation. This leads to the hypothesis that this stressor can intervene in some cases without being detected, and to the hypothesis that other stressors of the same kind might occur without being detected too. Further investigations addressing these hypotheses are considered. The analysis also led to the conclusion that dealing with these issues implied i) decision-making methods being well known to the workers and automated and ii) the decision-making tools being well known and strictly applied. Training was thus adjusted.

Keywords: stress, Expert, bias, high risk industry

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2475 A Framework and Case Study for Sustainable Development of Urban Areas

Authors: Yasaman Zeinali, Farid Khosravikia

Abstract:

This paper presents a multi-objective framework for sustainable urban development. The proposed framework aims to address different aspects of sustainability in urban development planning. These aspects include, but are not limited to education, health, job opportunities, architecture, culture, environment, mobility, energy, water, waste, and so on. Then, the proposed framework is applied to the Brackenridge Tract (an area in downtown Austin, Texas), to redevelop that area in a sustainable way. The detail of the implementation process is presented in this paper. The ultimate goal of this paper is to develop a sustainable area in downtown Austin with ensuring that it locally meets the needs of present and future generations with respect to economic, social, environmental, health as well as cultural aspects. Moreover, it helps the city with the population growth problem by accommodating more people in that area.

Keywords: Urban Planning, Sustainability, environmental impacts of human activities

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2474 Seismic Performance of Reinforced Concrete Frame Structure Based on Plastic Rotation

Authors: Kahil Amar, Meziani Faroudja, Khelil Nacim

Abstract:

The principal objective of this study is the evaluation of the seismic performance of reinforced concrete frame structures, taking into account of the behavior laws, reflecting the real behavior of materials, using CASTEM2000 software. A finite element model used is based in modified Takeda model with Timoshenko elements for columns and beams. This model is validated on a Vecchio experimental reinforced concrete (RC) frame model. Then, a study focused on the behavior of a RC frame with three-level and three-story in order to visualize the positioning the plastic hinge (plastic rotation), determined from the curvature distribution along the elements. The results obtained show that the beams of the 1st and 2nd level developed a very large plastic rotations, or these rotations exceed the values corresponding to CP (Collapse prevention with cp qCP = 0.02 rad), against those developed at the 3rd level, are between IO and LS (Immediate occupancy and life Safety with qIO = 0.005 rad and rad qLS = 0.01 respectively), so the beams of first and second levels submit a very significant damage.

Keywords: Pushover Analysis, Seismic Performance, plastic hinge, performance level, plastic rotation

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2473 Effect of Ambient Oxygen Content and Lifting Frequency on the Participant’s Lifting Capabilities, Muscle Activities, and Perceived Exertion

Authors: Atef M. Ghaleb, Mohamed Z. Ramadan, Khalid Saad Aljaloud

Abstract:

The aim of this study is to assesses the lifting capabilities of persons experiencing hypoxia. It also examines the behavior of the physiological response induced through the lifting process related to changing in the hypoxia and lifting frequency variables. For this purpose, the study performed two consecutive tests by using; (1) training and acclimatization; and (2) an actual collection of data. A total of 10 male students from King Saud University, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, were recruited in the study. A two-way repeated measures design, with two independent variables (ambient oxygen (15%, 18% and 21%)) and lifting frequency (1 lift/min and 4 lifts/min) and four dependent variables i.e., maximum acceptable weight of lift (MAWL), Electromyography (EMG) of four muscle groups (anterior deltoid, trapezius, biceps brachii, and erector spinae), rating of perceived exertion (RPE), and rating of oxygen feeling (ROF) were used in this study. The results show that lifting frequency has significantly impacted the MAWL and muscles’ activities. The oxygen content had a significant effect on the RPE and ROE. The study has revealed that acclimatization and training sessions significantly reduce the effect of the hypoxia on the human physiological parameters during the manual materials handling tasks.

Keywords: oxygen content, lifting capabilities, perceived exertion, muscle activities (sEMG)

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2472 Estimation of Synchronous Machine Synchronizing and Damping Torque Coefficients

Authors: Khaled M. EL-Naggar

Abstract:

Synchronizing and damping torque coefficients of a synchronous machine can give a quite clear picture for machine behavior during transients. These coefficients are used as a power system transient stability measurement. In this paper, a crow search optimization algorithm is presented and implemented to study the power system stability during transients. The algorithm makes use of the machine responses to perform the stability study in time domain. The problem is formulated as a dynamic estimation problem. An objective function that minimizes the error square in the estimated coefficients is designed. The method is tested using practical system with different study cases. Results are reported and a thorough discussion is presented. The study illustrates that the proposed method can estimate the stability coefficients for the critical stable cases where other methods may fail. The tests proved that the proposed tool is an accurate and reliable tool for estimating the machine coefficients for assessment of power system stability.

Keywords: Optimization, Machine, estimation, synchronous, crow search

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2471 Comparative Analysis of Control Techniques Based Sliding Mode for Transient Stability Assessment for Synchronous Multicellular Converter

Authors: Rihab Hamdi, Amel Hadri Hamida, Fatiha Khelili, Sakina Zerouali, Ouafae Bennis

Abstract:

This paper features a comparative study performance of sliding mode controller (SMC) for closed-loop voltage control of direct current to direct current (DC-DC) three-cells buck converter connected in parallel, operating in continuous conduction mode (CCM), based on pulse-width modulation (PWM) with SMC based on hysteresis modulation (HM) where an adaptive feedforward technique is adopted. On one hand, for the PWM-based SM, the approach is to incorporate a fixed-frequency PWM scheme which is effectively a variant of SM control. On the other hand, for the HM-based SM, oncoming an adaptive feedforward control that makes the hysteresis band variable in the hysteresis modulator of the SM controller in the aim to restrict the switching frequency variation in the case of any change of the line input voltage or output load variation are introduced. The results obtained under load change, input change and reference change clearly demonstrates a similar dynamic response of both proposed techniques, their effectiveness is fast and smooth tracking of the desired output voltage. The PWM-based SM technique has greatly improved the dynamic behavior with a bit advantageous compared to the HM-based SM technique, as well as provide stability in any operating conditions. Simulation studies in MATLAB/Simulink environment have been performed to verify the concept.

Keywords: Robustness, Sliding Mode Control, DC-DC converter, pulse-width modulation, hysteresis modulation, parallel multi-cells converter

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2470 HPTLC Fingerprint Profiling of Protorhus longifolia Methanolic Leaf Extract and Qualitative Analysis of Common Biomarkers

Authors: P. S. Seboletswe, Z. Mkhize, L. M. Katata-Seru

Abstract:

Protorhus longifolia is known as a medicinal plant that has been used traditionally to treat various ailments such as hemiplegic paralysis, blood clotting related diseases, diarrhoea, heartburn, etc. The study reports a High-Performance Thin Layer Chromatography (HPTLC) fingerprint profile of Protorhus longifolia methanolic extract and its qualitative analysis of gallic acid, rutin, and quercetin. HPTLC analysis was achieved using CAMAG HPTLC system equipped with CAMAG automatic TLC sampler 4, CAMAG Automatic Developing Chamber 2 (ADC2), CAMAG visualizer 2, CAMAG Thin Layer Chromatography (TLC) scanner and visionCATS CAMAG HPTLC software. Mobile phase comprising toluene, ethyl acetate, formic acid (21:15:3) was used for qualitative analysis of gallic acid and revealed eight peaks while the mobile phase containing ethyl acetate, water, glacial acetic acid, formic acid (100:26:11:11) for qualitative analysis of rutin and quercetin revealed six peaks. HPTLC sillica gel 60 F254 glass plates (10 × 10) were used as the stationary phase. Gallic acid was detected at the Rf = 0.35; while rutin and quercetin were not evident in the extract. Further studies will be performed to quantify gallic acid in Protorhus longifolia leaves and also identify other biomarkers.

Keywords: Biomarkers, HPTLC, gallic acid, fingerprint profiling, Protorhus longifolia

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2469 Fingers Exergames to Improve Fine Motor Skill in Autistic Children

Authors: Zulhisyam Salleh, Fizatul Aini Patakor, Rosilah Wahab, Awangku Khairul Ridzwan Awangku Jaya

Abstract:

Autism is a lifelong developmental disability that affects how people perceive the world and interact with others. Most of these children have difficulty with fine motor skills which typically struggle with handwriting and fine activities in their routine life such as getting dressed and controlled use of the everyday tool. Because fine motor activities encompass so many routine functions, a fine motor delay can have a measurable negative impact on a person's ability to handle daily practical tasks. This project proposed a simple fine motor exercise aid plus the game (exergame) for autistic children who discover from fine motor difficulties. The proposed exergame will be blinking randomly and user needs to bend their finger accordingly. It will notify the user, whether they bend the right finger or not. The system is realized using Arduino, which is programmed to control all the operated circuit. The feasibility studies with six autistic children were conducted and found the child interested in using exergame and could quickly get used to it. This study provides important guidance for future investigations of the exergame potential for accessing and improving fine motor skill among autistic children.

Keywords: autism children, Arduino project, fine motor skill, finger exergame

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2468 The Role of Food System in Promoting Environmental Planning

Authors: Rayeheh Khatami, Toktam Hanaei, Mohammad Reza Mansouri Daneshvar

Abstract:

Today, many local and national governments are developing urban agriculture as an effective tool in responding to challenges such as food security, poverty and environmental problems. In fact, urban agriculture plays an important role in food system, which can provide citizens' income and become one of the components of economic, social and environmental systems. The purpose of this paper is to analyze the urban agriculture and urban food systems in order to understand the impact of urban foods production on environmental planning in non-western city region context. To achieve such objective, we carry out a case study in Mashhad city of Iran by using qualitative approaches. A survey on documentary studies and planning tools integrate with face to face interview with experts which explain the role of food system in environmental planning process. The paper extends the use of food in the environmental planning, specifically to examine this role to create agricultural garden as a mean to improve agricultural system in non-western country. The paper is concluded with a set of recommendations for researchers and policymakers who seek to create spaces in order to implement urban agriculture in cities for food justice.

Keywords: Environmental Planning, Urban Agriculture, Mashhad, food system, agricultural garden

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2467 Automatic Detection of Proliferative Cells in Immunohistochemically Images of Meningioma Using Fuzzy C-Means Clustering and HSV Color Space

Authors: Vahid Anari, Mina Bakhshi

Abstract:

Visual search and identification of immunohistochemically stained tissue of meningioma was performed manually in pathologic laboratories to detect and diagnose the cancers type of meningioma. This task is very tedious and time-consuming. Moreover, because of cell's complex nature, it still remains a challenging task to segment cells from its background and analyze them automatically. In this paper, we develop and test a computerized scheme that can automatically identify cells in microscopic images of meningioma and classify them into positive (proliferative) and negative (normal) cells. Dataset including 150 images are used to test the scheme. The scheme uses Fuzzy C-means algorithm as a color clustering method based on perceptually uniform hue, saturation, value (HSV) color space. Since the cells are distinguishable by the human eye, the accuracy and stability of the algorithm are quantitatively compared through application to a wide variety of real images.

Keywords: color segmentation, fuzzy c-means, thresholding, immunohistochemistry, meningioma, positive cell, HSV color space

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2466 Mechanical Contribution of Silica Fume and Hydrated Lime Addition in Mortars Assessed by Ultrasonic Pulse Velocity Tests

Authors: Nacim Khelil, Amar Kahil, Said Boukais

Abstract:

The aim of the present study is to investigate the changes in the mechanical properties of mortars including additions of Condensed Silica Fume (CSF), Hydrated Lime (CH) or both at various amounts (5% to 15% of cement replacement) and high water ratios (w/b) (0.4 to 0.7). The physical and mechanical changes in the mixes were evaluated using non-destructive tests (Ultrasonic Pulse Velocity (UPV)) and destructive tests (crushing tests) on 28 day-long specimens consecutively, in order to assess CSF and CH replacement rate influence on the mechanical and physical properties of the mortars, as well as CSF-CH pre-mixing on the improvement of these properties. A significant improvement of the mechanical properties of the CSF, CSF-CH mortars, has been noted. CSF-CH mixes showed the best improvements exceeding 50% improvement, showing the sizable pozzolanic reaction contribution to the specimen strength development. UPV tests have shown increased velocities for CSF and CSH mixes, however no proportional evolution with compressive strengths could be noted. The results of the study show that CSF-CH addition could represent a suitable solution to significantly increase the mechanical properties of mortars.

Keywords: compressive strength, condensed silica fume, hydrated lime, pozzolanic reaction, UPV testing

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2465 The Non-Stationary BINARMA(1,1) Process with Poisson Innovations: An Application on Accident Data

Authors: Y. Sunecher, N. Mamode Khan, V. Jowaheer

Abstract:

This paper considers the modelling of a non-stationary bivariate integer-valued autoregressive moving average of order one (BINARMA(1,1)) with correlated Poisson innovations. The BINARMA(1,1) model is specified using the binomial thinning operator and by assuming that the cross-correlation between the two series is induced by the innovation terms only. Based on these assumptions, the non-stationary marginal and joint moments of the BINARMA(1,1) are derived iteratively by using some initial stationary moments. As regards to the estimation of parameters of the proposed model, the conditional maximum likelihood (CML) estimation method is derived based on thinning and convolution properties. The forecasting equations of the BINARMA(1,1) model are also derived. A simulation study is also proposed where BINARMA(1,1) count data are generated using a multivariate Poisson R code for the innovation terms. The performance of the BINARMA(1,1) model is then assessed through a simulation experiment and the mean estimates of the model parameters obtained are all efficient, based on their standard errors. The proposed model is then used to analyse a real-life accident data on the motorway in Mauritius, based on some covariates: policemen, daily patrol, speed cameras, traffic lights and roundabouts. The BINARMA(1,1) model is applied on the accident data and the CML estimates clearly indicate a significant impact of the covariates on the number of accidents on the motorway in Mauritius. The forecasting equations also provide reliable one-step ahead forecasts.

Keywords: non-stationary, CML, BINARMA(1, Poisson Innovations

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2464 The Effect of Eight Weeks of Aerobic Training on Indices of Cardio-Respiratory and Exercise Tolerance in Overweight Women with Chronic Asthma

Authors: Somayeh Negahdari, Mohsen Ghanbarzadeh, Masoud Nikbakht, Heshmatolah Tavakol

Abstract:

Asthma, obesity and overweight are the main factors causing change within the heart and respiratory airways. Asthma symptoms are normally observed during exercising. Epidemiological studies have indicated asthma symptoms occurring due to certain lifestyle habits; for example, a sedentary lifestyle. In this study, eight weeks of aerobic exercises resulted in a positive effect overall in overweight women experiencing mild chronic asthma. The quasi-experimental applied research has been done based on experimental and control groups. The experimental group (seven patients) and control group (n = 7) were graded before and after the test. According to the Borg dyspnea and fatigue Perception Index, the training intensity has determined. Participants in the study performed a sub-maximal aerobic activity schedule (45% to 80% of maximum heart rate) for two months, while the control group (n = 7) stayed away from aerobic exercise. Data evaluation and analysis of covariance compared both the pre-test and post-test with paired t-test at significance level of P≤ 0.05. After eight weeks of exercise, the results of the experimental group show a significant decrease in resting heart rate, systolic blood pressure, minute ventilation, while a significant increase in maximal oxygen uptake and tolerance activity (P ≤ 0.05). In the control group, there was no significant difference in these parameters ((P ≤ 0.05). The results indicate the aerobic activity can strengthen the respiratory muscles, while other physiological factors could result in breathing and heart recovery. Aerobic activity also resulted in favorable changes in cardiovascular parameters, and exercise tolerance of overweight women with chronic asthma.

Keywords: Asthma, Overweight, Exercise Tolerance, aerobic, respiratory cardiac index

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2463 Incorporating Circular Economy into Passive Design Strategies in Tropical Nigeria

Authors: Noah G. Akhimien, Eshrar Latif

Abstract:

The natural environment is in need for an urgent rescue due to dilapidation and recession of resources. Passive design strategies have proven to be one of the effective ways to reduce CO2 emissions and to improve building performance. On the other hand, there is a huge drop in material availability due to poor recycling culture. Consequently, building waste pose environmental hazard due to unrecycled building materials from construction and deconstruction. Buildings are seen to be material banks for a circular economy, therefore incorporating circular economy into passive housing will not only safe guide the climate but also improve resource efficiency. The study focuses on incorporating a circular economy in passive design strategies for an affordable energy and resource efficient residential building in Nigeria. Carbon dioxide (CO2) concentration is still on the increase as buildings are responsible for a significant amount of this emission globally. Therefore, prompt measures need to be taken to combat the effect of global warming and associated threats. Nigeria is rapidly growing in human population, resources on the other hand have receded greatly, and there is an abrupt need for recycling even in the built environment. It is necessary that Nigeria responds to these challenges effectively and efficiently considering building resource and energy. Passive design strategies were assessed using simulations to obtain qualitative and quantitative data which were inferred to case studies as it relates to the Nigeria climate. Building materials were analysed using the ReSOLVE model in order to explore possible recycling phase. This provided relevant information and strategies to illustrate the possibility of circular economy in passive buildings. The study offers an alternative approach, as it is the general principle for the reworking of an economy on ecological lines in passive housing and by closing material loops in circular economy.

Keywords: Building, Sustainability, Efficiency, Circular economy, passive design

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2462 Piezoelectric Power Output Predictions Using Single-Phase Flow to Power Flow Meters

Authors: Umar Alhaji Mukhtar, Abubakar Mohammed El-jummah

Abstract:

This research involved the utilization of fluid flow energy to predict power output using Lead Zirconate Titanate (PZT) piezoelectric stacks. The aim of this work is to extract energy from a controlled level of pressure fluctuation in single-phase flow which forms a part of the energy harvesting technology that powers flow meters. A device- Perspex box was developed and fixed to 50.8 mm rig to induce pressure fluctuation in the flow. An experimental test was carried out using the single-phase water flow in the developed rig in order to measure the power output generation from the piezoelectric stacks. 16 sets of experimental tests were conducted to ensure the maximum output result. The acquired signal of the pressure fluctuation was used to simulate the expected electrical output from the piezoelectric material. The results showed a maximum output voltage of 12 V with an instantaneous output power of 1 µW generated, when the pressure amplitude is 2.6 kPa at a frequency of 2.4 Hz.

Keywords: Energy harvesting, experimental test, pressure fluctuation, perspex rig

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2461 Investigating Iraqi EFL University Students' Productive Knowledge of Grammatical Collocations in English

Authors: Adnan Z. Mkhelif

Abstract:

Grammatical collocations (GCs) are word combinations containing a preposition or a grammatical structure, such as an infinitive (e.g. smile at, interested in, easy to learn, etc.). Such collocations tend to be difficult for Iraqi EFL university students (IUS) to master. To help address this problem, it is important to identify the factors causing it. This study aims at investigating the effects of L2 proficiency, frequency of GCs and their transparency on IUSs’ productive knowledge of GCs. The study involves 112 undergraduate participants with different proficiency levels, learning English in formal contexts in Iraq. The data collection instruments include (but not limited to) a productive knowledge test (designed by the researcher using the British National Corpus (BNC)), as well as the grammar part of the Oxford Placement Test (OPT). The study findings have shown that all the above-mentioned factors have significant effects on IUSs’ productive knowledge of GCs. In addition to establishing evidence of which factors of L2 learning might be relevant to learning GCs, it is hoped that the findings of the present study will contribute to more effective methods of teaching that can better address and help overcome the problems IUSs encounter in learning GCs. The study is thus hoped to have significant theoretical and pedagogical implications for researchers, syllabus designers as well as teachers of English as a foreign/second language.

Keywords: Transparency, Corpus Linguistics, Frequency, Proficiency, L2 vocabulary learning, grammatical collocations, productive knowledge

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2460 Investigating Iraqi EFL Undergraduates' Performance in the Production of Number Forms in English

Authors: Adnan Z. Mkhelif

Abstract:

The production of number forms in English tends to be problematic for Iraqi learners of English as a foreign language (EFL), even at the undergraduate level. To help better understand and consequently address this problem, it is important to identify its sources. This study aims at: (1) statistically analysing Iraqi EFL undergraduates' performance in the production of number forms in English; (2) classifying learners' errors in terms of their possible major causes; and (3) outlining some pedagogical recommendations relevant to the teaching of number forms in English. It is hypothesized in this study that (1) Iraqi EFL undergraduates still face problems in the production of number forms in English and (2) errors pertaining to the context of learning are more numerous than those attributable to the other possible causes. After reviewing the literature available on the topic, a written test comprising 50 items has been constructed and administered to a randomly chosen sample of 50 second-year college students from the Department of English, College of Education, Wasit University. The findings of the study showed that Iraqi EFL undergraduates still face problems in the production of number forms in English and that the possible major sources of learners’ errors can be arranged hierarchically in terms of the percentages of errors to which they can be ascribed as follows: (1) context of learning (50%), (2) intralingual transfer (37%), and (3) interlingual transfer (13%). It is hoped that the implications of the study findings will be beneficial to researchers, syllabus designers, as well as teachers of English as a foreign/second language.

Keywords: L2 vocabulary learning, productive knowledge, L2 number forms, L2 morphology

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2459 Experimental Characterization of the Thermal Behavior of a Sawdust Mortar

Authors: F. Taouche-Kheloui, O. Fedaoui-Akmoussi, K. Ait tahar, Li. Alex

Abstract:

Currently, the reduction of energy consumption, through the use of abundant and recyclable natural materials, for better thermal insulation represents an important area of research. To this end, the use of bio-sourced materials has been identified as one of the green sectors with a very high economic development potential for the future. Because of its role in reducing the consumption of fossil-based raw materials, it contributes significantly to the storage of atmospheric carbon, limits greenhouse gas emissions and creates new economic opportunities. This study constitutes a contribution to the elaboration and the experimental characterization of the thermal behavior of a sawdust-reduced mortar matrix. We have taken into account the influence of the size of the grain fibers of sawdust, hence the use of three different ranges and also different percentage in the different confections. The intended practical application consists of producing a light weight compound at a lower cost to ensure a better thermal and acoustic behavior compared to that existing in the field, in addition to the desired resistances. Improving energy performance, while reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the building sector, is amongst the objectives to be achieved. The results are very encouraging and highlight the value of the proposed design of organic-source mortar panels which have specific mechanical properties acceptable for their use, low densities, lower cost of manufacture and labor, and above all a positive impact on the environment.

Keywords: Experimental, Analysis, Thermal, mortar, sawdust waste

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2458 Investigation of Flow Characteristics on Upstream and Downstream of Orifice Using Computational Fluid Dynamics

Authors: War War Min Swe, Aung Myat Thu, Khin Cho Thet, Zaw Moe Htet, Thuzar Mon

Abstract:

The main parameter of the orifice hole diameter was designed according to the range of throttle diameter ratio which gave the required discharge coefficient. The discharge coefficient is determined by difference diameter ratios. The value of discharge coefficient is 0.958 occurred at throttle diameter ratio 0.5. The throttle hole diameter is 80 mm. The flow analysis is done numerically using ANSYS 17.0, computational fluid dynamics. The flow velocity was analyzed in the upstream and downstream of the orifice meter. The downstream velocity of non-standard orifice meter is 2.5% greater than that of standard orifice meter. The differential pressure is 515.379 Pa in standard orifice.

Keywords: flow characteristics, inclined, discharge coefficients, CFD-CFX

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2457 Study of a Developed Model Describing a Vacuum Membrane Distillation Unit Coupled to Solar Energy

Authors: Fatma Khaled, Khaoula Hidouri, Bechir Chaouachi

Abstract:

Desalination using solar energy coupled with membrane techniques such as vacuum membrane distillation (VMD) is considered as an interesting alternative for the production of pure water. During this work, a developed model of a polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) hollow fiber membrane module of a VMD unit of seawater was carried out. This simulation leads to establishing a comparison between the effects of two different equations of the vaporization latent heat on the membrane surface temperature and on the unit productivity. Besides, in order to study the effect of putting membrane modules in series on the outlet fluid temperature and on the productivity of the process, a simulation was executed.

Keywords: Productivity, vacuum membrane distillation, membrane module, membrane temperature

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2456 Modified Hybrid Genetic Algorithm-Based Artificial Neural Network Application on Wall Shear Stress Prediction

Authors: Zohreh Sheikh Khozani, Wan Hanna Melini Wan Mohtar, Mojtaba Porhemmat

Abstract:

Prediction of wall shear stress in a rectangular channel, with non-homogeneous roughness distribution, was studied. Estimation of shear stress is an important subject in hydraulic engineering, since it affects the flow structure directly. In this study, the Genetic Algorithm Artificial (GAA) neural network is introduced as a hybrid methodology of the Artificial Neural Network (ANN) and modified Genetic Algorithm (GA) combination. This GAA method was employed to predict the wall shear stress. Various input combinations and transfer functions were considered to find the most appropriate GAA model. The results show that the proposed GAA method could predict the wall shear stress of open channels with high accuracy, by Root Mean Square Error (RMSE) of 0.064 in the test dataset. Thus, using GAA provides an accurate and practical simple-to-use equation.

Keywords: Genetic Programming, Genetic Algorithm, Artificial Neural Network, rectangular channel, shear stress

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2455 Dye Removal from Aqueous Solution by Regenerated Spent Bleaching Earth

Authors: Ahmed I. Shehab, Sabah M. Abdel Basir, M. A. Abdel Khalek, M. H. Soliman, G. Elgemeie

Abstract:

Spent bleaching earth (SBE) recycling and utilization as an adsorbent to eliminate dyes from aqueous solution was studied. Organic solvents and subsequent thermal treatment were carried out to recover and reactivate the SBE. The effect of pH, temperature, dye’s initial concentration, and contact time on the dye removal using recycled spent bleaching earth (RSBE) was investigated. Recycled SBE showed better removal affinity of cationic than anionic dyes. The maximum removal was achieved at pH 2 and 8 for anionic and cationic dyes, respectively. Kinetic data matched with the pseudo second-order model. The adsorption phenomenon governing this process was identified by the Langmuir and Freundlich isotherms for anionic dye while Freundlich model represented the sorption process for cationic dye. The changes of Gibbs free energy (ΔG°), enthalpy (ΔH°), and entropy (ΔS°) were computed and compared through thermodynamic study for both dyes.

Keywords: Thermodynamics, Regeneration, dye removal, spent bleaching earth

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2454 Segmentation of Arabic Handwritten Numeral Strings Based on Watershed Approach

Authors: Nidal F. Shilbayeh, Remah W. Al-Khatib, Sameer A. Nooh

Abstract:

Arabic offline handwriting recognition systems are considered as one of the most challenging topics. Arabic Handwritten Numeral Strings are used to automate systems that deal with numbers such as postal code, banking account numbers and numbers on car plates. Segmentation of connected numerals is the main bottleneck in the handwritten numeral recognition system.  This is in turn can increase the speed and efficiency of the recognition system. In this paper, we proposed algorithms for automatic segmentation and feature extraction of Arabic handwritten numeral strings based on Watershed approach. The algorithms have been designed and implemented to achieve the main goal of segmenting and extracting the string of numeral digits written by hand especially in a courtesy amount of bank checks. The segmentation algorithm partitions the string into multiple regions that can be associated with the properties of one or more criteria. The numeral extraction algorithm extracts the numeral string digits into separated individual digit. Both algorithms for segmentation and feature extraction have been tested successfully and efficiently for all types of numerals.

Keywords: Segmentation, Feature Extraction, handwritten numerals, courtesy amount, numeral recognition

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2453 C Vibration Analysis of a Beam on Elastic Foundation with Elastically Restrained Ends Using Spectral Element Method

Authors: Hamioud Saida, Khalfallah Salah

Abstract:

In this study, a spectral element method (SEM) is employed to predict the free vibration of a Euler-Bernoulli beam resting on a Winkler foundation with elastically restrained ends. The formulation of the dynamic stiffness matrix has been established by solving the differential equation of motion which was transformed to frequency domain. Non-dimensional natural frequencies and shape modes are obtained by solving the partial differential equations, numerically. Numerical comparisons and examples are performed to show the effectiveness of the SEM and to investigate the effects of various parameters, such as the springs at the boundaries and the elastic foundation parameter on the vibration frequencies. The obtained results demonstrate that the present method can also be applied to solve the more general problem of the dynamic analysis of structures with higher order precision.

Keywords: Winkler foundation, elastically supported Euler-Bernoulli beam, free-vibration, spectral element method

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2452 Energy and Exergy Performance Optimization on a Real Gas Turbine Power Plant

Authors: Farhat Hajer, Khir Tahar, Cherni Rafik, Dakhli Radhouen, Ammar Ben Brahim

Abstract:

This paper presents the energy and exergy optimization of a real gas turbine power plant performance of 100 MW of power, installed in the South East of Tunisia. A simulation code is established using the EES (Engineering Equation Solver) software. The parameters considered are those of the actual operating conditions of the gas turbine thermal power station under study. The results show that thermal and exergetic efficiency decreases with the increase of the ambient temperature. Air excess has an important effect on the thermal efficiency. The emission of NOx rises in the summer and decreases in the winter. The obtained rates of NOx are compared with measurements results.

Keywords: Exergy, Efficiency, temperature, Gas Turbine

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2451 The Importance of Development in Laboratory Diagnosis at the Intersection

Authors: Agus Sahri, Cahya Putra Dinata, Faishal Andhi Rokhman

Abstract:

Intersection is a critical area on a highway which is a place of conflict points and congestion due to the meeting of two or more roads. Conflicts that occur at the intersection include diverging, merging, weaving, and crossing. To deal with these conflicts, a crossing control system is needed, at a plot of intersection there are two control systems namely signal intersections and non-signalized intersections. The control system at a plot of intersection can affect the intersection performance. In Indonesia there are still many intersections with poor intersection performance. In analyzing the parameters to measure the performance of a plot of intersection in Indonesia, it is guided by the 1997 Indonesian Road Capacity Manual. For this reason, this study aims to develop laboratory diagnostics at plot intersections to analyze parameters that can affect the performance of an intersection. The research method used is research and development. The laboratory diagnosis includes anamnesis, differential diagnosis, inspection, diagnosis, prognosis, specimens, analysis and sample data analysts. It is expected that this research can encourage the development and application of laboratory diagnostics at a plot of intersection in Indonesia so that intersections can function optimally.

Keywords: Control Systems, Indonesia, intersection, laboratory diagnostic

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