Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 63

Search results for: lending

63 Market Acceptance of a Murabaha-Based Finance Structure within a Social Network of Non-Islamic Small and Medium Enterprise Owners in African Procurement

Authors: Craig M. Allen

Abstract:

Twenty two African entrepreneurs with Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in a single social network centered around a non-Muslim population in a smaller African country, selected an Islamic financing structure, a form of Murabaha, based solely on market rationale. These entrepreneurs had all won procurement contracts from major purchasers of goods within their country and faced difficulty arranging traditional bank financing to support their supply-chain needs. The Murabaha-based structure satisfied their market-driven demand and provided an attractive alternative to the traditional bank-offered lending products. The Murabaha-styled trade-financing structure was not promoted with any religious implications, but solely as a market solution to the existing problems associated with bank-related financing. This indicates the strong market forces that draw SMEs to financing structures that are traditionally considered within the framework of Islamic finance.

Keywords: Islamic Finance, Entrepreneurs, Africa, SMEs, Murabaha, market acceptance

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62 Revisiting Domestication and Foreignisation Methods: Translating the Quran by the Hybrid Approach

Authors: Aladdin Al-Tarawneh

Abstract:

The Quran, as it is the sacred book of Islam and considered the literal word of God (Allah) in Arabic, is highly translated into many languages; however, the foreignising or the literal approach excessively stains the quality and discredits the final product in the eyes of its receptors. Such an approach fails to capture the intended meaning of the Quran and to communicate it in any language. Therefore, this study is conducted to propose a different approach that seeks involving other ones according to a hybrid model. Indeed, this study challenges the binary adherence that is highly used in Translation Studies (TS) in general and in the translation of the Quran in particular. Drawing on the genuine fact that the Quran can be communicated in any language in terms of meaning, and the translation is not sacred; this paper approaches the translation of the Quran by blending different methods like domestication or foreignisation in a systematic way, avoiding the binary choice made by many translators. To reach this aim, the paper has a conceptual part that seeks to elucidate and clarify the main methods employed in TS, and criticise and modify them to propose the new hybrid approach (the hybrid model) for translating the Quran – that is, the deductive method. To support and validate the outcome of the previous part, a comparative model is employed in order to highlight the differences between the suggested translation and other widely used ones – that is, the inductive method. By applying this methodology, the paper proves that there is a deficiency of communicating the original meaning of the Quran in light of the foreignising approach. In conclusion, the paper suggests producing a Quran translation has to take into account the adoption of many techniques to express the meaning of the Quran as understood in the original, and to offer this understanding in English in the most native-like manner to serve the intended target readers.

Keywords: Hybrid Approach, Domestication, Hybrid Model, Quran translation, foreignisation

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61 Combustion Improvements by C4/C5 Bio-Alcohol Isomer Blended Fuels Combined with Supercharging and EGR in a Diesel Engine

Authors: Yasufumi Yoshimoto, Enkhjargal Tserenochir, Eiji Kinoshita, Takeshi Otaka

Abstract:

Next generation bio-alcohols produced from non-food based sources like cellulosic biomass are promising renewable energy sources. The present study investigates engine performance, combustion characteristics, and emissions of a small single cylinder direct injection diesel engine fueled by four kinds of next generation bio-alcohol isomer and diesel fuel blends with a constant blending ratio of 3:7 (mass). The tested bio-alcohol isomers here are n-butanol and iso-butanol (C4 alcohol), and n-pentanol and iso-pentanol (C5 alcohol). To obtain simultaneous reductions in NOx and smoke emissions, the experiments employed supercharging combined with EGR (Exhaust Gas Recirculation). The boost pressures were fixed at two conditions, 100 kPa (naturally aspirated operation) and 120 kPa (supercharged operation) provided with a roots blower type supercharger. The EGR rates were varied from 0 to 25% using a cooled EGR technique. The results showed that both with and without supercharging, all the bio-alcohol blended diesel fuels improved the trade-off relation between NOx and smoke emissions at all EGR rates while maintaining good engine performance, when compared with diesel fuel operation. It was also found that regardless of boost pressure and EGR rate, the ignition delays of the tested bio-alcohol isomer blends are in the order of iso-butanol > n-butanol > iso-pentanol > n-pentanol. Overall, it was concluded that, except for the changes in the ignition delays the influence of bio-alcohol isomer blends on the engine performance, combustion characteristics, and emissions are relatively small.

Keywords: Diesel Engine, alternative fuel, EGR, next generation bio-alcohol isomer blended fuel, pentanol, supercharging,  Butanol

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60 Accounting for Rice Productivity Heterogeneity in Ghana: The Two-Step Stochastic Metafrontier Approach

Authors: Franklin Nantui Mabe, Samuel A. Donkoh, Seidu Al-Hassan

Abstract:

Rice yields among agro-ecological zones are heterogeneous. Farmers, researchers and policy makers are making frantic efforts to bridge rice yield gaps between agro-ecological zones through the promotion of improved agricultural technologies (IATs). Farmers are also modifying these IATs and blending them with indigenous farming practices (IFPs) to form farmer innovation systems (FISs). Also, different metafrontier models have been used in estimating productivity performances and their drivers. This study used the two-step stochastic metafrontier model to estimate the productivity performances of rice farmers and their determining factors in GSZ, FSTZ and CSZ. The study used both primary and secondary data. Farmers in CSZ are the most technically efficient. Technical inefficiencies of farmers are negatively influenced by age, sex, household size, education years, extension visits, contract farming, access to improved seeds, access to irrigation, high rainfall amount, less lodging of rice, and well-coordinated and synergized adoption of technologies. Albeit farmers in CSZ are doing well in terms of rice yield, they still have the highest potential of increasing rice yield since they had the lowest TGR. It is recommended that government through the ministry of food and agriculture, development partners and individual private companies promote the adoption of IATs as well as educate farmers on how to coordinate and synergize the adoption of the whole package. Contract farming concept and agricultural extension intensification should be vigorously pursued to the latter.

Keywords: Efficiency, farmer innovation systems, improved agricultural technologies, two-step stochastic metafrontier approach

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59 Mechanical, Thermal and Biodegradable Properties of Bioplast-Spruce Green Wood Polymer Composites

Authors: A. Atli, K. Candelier, J. Alteyrac

Abstract:

Environmental and sustainability concerns push the industries to manufacture alternative materials having less environmental impact. The Wood Plastic Composites (WPCs) produced by blending the biopolymers and natural fillers permit not only to tailor the desired properties of materials but also are the solution to meet the environmental and sustainability requirements. This work presents the elaboration and characterization of the fully green WPCs prepared by blending a biopolymer, BIOPLAST® GS 2189 and spruce sawdust used as filler with different amounts. Since both components are bio-based, the resulting material is entirely environmentally friendly. The mechanical, thermal, structural properties of these WPCs were characterized by different analytical methods like tensile, flexural and impact tests, Thermogravimetric Analysis (TGA), Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC) and X-ray Diffraction (XRD). Their water absorption properties and resistance to the termite and fungal attacks were determined in relation with different wood filler content. The tensile and flexural moduli of WPCs increased with increasing amount of wood fillers into the biopolymer, but WPCs became more brittle compared to the neat polymer. Incorporation of spruce sawdust modified the thermal properties of polymer: The degradation, cold crystallization, and melting temperatures shifted to higher temperatures when spruce sawdust was added into polymer. The termite, fungal and water absorption resistance of WPCs decreased with increasing wood amount in WPCs, but remained in durability class 1 (durable) concerning fungal resistance and quoted 1 (attempted attack) in visual rating regarding to the termites resistance except that the WPC with the highest wood content (30 wt%) rated 2 (slight attack) indicating a long term durability. All the results showed the possibility to elaborate the easy injectable composite materials with adjustable properties by incorporation of BIOPLAST® GS 2189 and spruce sawdust. Therefore, lightweight WPCs allow both to recycle wood industry byproducts and to produce a full ecologic material.

Keywords: Durability, Wood-Plastic Composites, Mechanical Properties, Biodegradability, Thermal Properties, structural properties, spectrophotometry, melt flow index

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58 Production, Characterisation and Assessment of Biomixture Fuels for Compression Ignition Engine Application

Authors: K. Masera, A. K. Hossain

Abstract:

Hardly any neat biodiesel satisfies the European EN14214 standard for compression ignition engine application. To satisfy the EN14214 standard, various additives are doped into biodiesel; however, biodiesel additives might cause other problems such as increase in the particular emission and increased specific fuel consumption. In addition, the additives could be expensive. Considering the increasing level of greenhouse gas GHG emissions and fossil fuel depletion, it is forecasted that the use of biodiesel will be higher in the near future. Hence, the negative aspects of the biodiesel additives will likely to gain much more importance and need to be replaced with better solutions. This study aims to satisfy the European standard EN14214 by blending the biodiesels derived from sustainable feedstocks. Waste Cooking Oil (WCO) and Animal Fat Oil (AFO) are two sustainable feedstocks in the EU (including the UK) for producing biodiesels. In the first stage of the study, these oils were transesterified separately and neat biodiesels (W100 & A100) were produced. Secondly, the biodiesels were blended together in various ratios: 80% WCO biodiesel and 20% AFO biodiesel (W80A20), 60% WCO biodiesel and 40% AFO biodiesel (W60A40), 50% WCO biodiesel and 50% AFO biodiesel (W50A50), 30% WCO biodiesel and 70% AFO biodiesel (W30A70), 10% WCO biodiesel and 90% AFO biodiesel (W10A90). The prepared samples were analysed using Thermo Scientific Trace 1300 Gas Chromatograph and ISQ LT Mass Spectrometer (GC-MS). The GS-MS analysis gave Fatty Acid Methyl Ester (FAME) breakdowns of the fuel samples. It was found that total saturation degree of the samples was linearly increasing (from 15% for W100 to 54% for A100) as the percentage of the AFO biodiesel was increased. Furthermore, it was found that WCO biodiesel was mainly (82%) composed of polyunsaturated FAMEs. Cetane numbers, iodine numbers, calorific values, lower heating values and the densities (at 15 oC) of the samples were estimated by using the mass percentages data of the FAMEs. Besides, kinematic viscosities (at 40 °C and 20 °C), densities (at 15 °C), heating values and flash point temperatures of the biomixture samples were measured in the lab. It was found that estimated and measured characterisation results were comparable. The current study concluded that biomixture fuel samples W60A40 and W50A50 were perfectly satisfying the European EN 14214 norms without any need of additives. Investigation on engine performance, exhaust emission and combustion characteristics will be conducted to assess the full feasibility of the proposed biomixture fuels.

Keywords: Characterisation, Biodiesel, CI engine, blending

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57 Effects of Temperature and Enzyme Concentration on Quality of Pineapple and Pawpaw Blended Juice

Authors: Ndidi F. Amulu, Calistus N. Ude, Patrick E. Amulu, Nneka N. Uchegbu

Abstract:

The effects of temperature and enzyme concentration on the quality of mixed pineapple and pawpaw blended fruits juice were studied. Extracts of the two fruit juices were separately treated at 70  for 15 min each so as to inactivate micro-organisms. They were analyzed and blended in different proportions of 70% pawpaw and 30% pineapple, 60% pawpaw and 40% pineapple, 50% pineapple and 50% pawpaw, 40% pawpaw and 60% pineapple. The characterization of the fresh pawpaw and pineapple juice before blending showed that the juices have good quality. The high water content of the product may have affected the viscosity, vitamin C content and total soluble solid of the blended juice to be low. The effects of the process parameters on the quality showed that better quality of the blended juice can be obtained within the optimum temperature range of (50-70 °C) and enzyme concentration range (0.12-0.18 w/v). The ratio of mix 60% pineapple juice: 40% pawpaw juice has better quality. This showed that pawpaw and pineapple juices can blend effectively to produce a quality juice.

Keywords: viscosity, vitamin C, pineapple, clarification, pawpaw

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56 ParkedGuard: An Efficient and Accurate Parked Domain Detection System Using Graphical Locality Analysis and Coarse-To-Fine Strategy

Authors: Chia-Min Lai, Wan-Ching Lin, Hahn-Ming Lee, Ching-Hao Mao

Abstract:

As world wild internet has non-stop developments, making profit by lending registered domain names emerges as a new business in recent years. Unfortunately, the larger the market scale of domain lending service becomes, the riskier that there exist malicious behaviors or malwares hiding behind parked domains will be. Also, previous work for differentiating parked domain suffers two main defects: 1) too much data-collecting effort and CPU latency needed for features engineering and 2) ineffectiveness when detecting parked domains containing external links that are usually abused by hackers, e.g., drive-by download attack. Aiming for alleviating above defects without sacrificing practical usability, this paper proposes ParkedGuard as an efficient and accurate parked domain detector. Several scripting behavioral features were analyzed, while those with special statistical significance are adopted in ParkedGuard to make feature engineering much more cost-efficient. On the other hand, finding memberships between external links and parked domains was modeled as a graph mining problem, and a coarse-to-fine strategy was elaborately designed by leverage the graphical locality such that ParkedGuard outperforms the state-of-the-art in terms of both recall and precision rates.

Keywords: coarse-to-fine strategy, domain parking service, graphical locality analysis, parked domain

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55 Comparative Sulphate Resistance of Pozzolanic Cement Mortars

Authors: Mahmud Abba Tahir

Abstract:

This is report on experiment out to compare the sulphate resistance of sand mortar made with five different pozzolanic cement. The pozzolanic cement were prepared by blending powered burnt bricks from the Adamawa, Makurdi, Kano, Kaduna and Niger bricks factories with ordinary Portland cement in the ratio 1:4. Sand –pozzolanic cement mortars of mix ratio 1:6 and 1:3 with water-cement ratio of 0.65 and 0.40 respectively were used to prepare cubes and bars specimens. 150 mortar cubes of size 70mm x 70mm x 70mm and 35 mortar bars of 15mm x 15mm x 100mm dimensions were cast and cured for 28 days. The cured specimens then immersed in the solutions of K2SO4, (NH4)2SO4 and water for 28 days and then tested. The compressive strengths of cubes in water increased by 34% while those in the sulphate solutions decreased. Strength decreases of the cubes, cracking and warping of bars immersed in K2SO4 were less than those in (NH4)2SO4. Specimens made with Niger and Makurdi pulverized burnt bricks experienced less effect of the sulphates and can therefore be used as pozzolan in mortar and concrete to resist sulphate.

Keywords: comparative, burnt bricks powder, pozzolanic cement, sulphates

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54 Hybrid Temporal Correlation Based on Gaussian Mixture Model Framework for View Synthesis

Authors: Deng Zengming, Wang Mingjiang

Abstract:

As 3D video is explored as a hot research topic in the last few decades, free-viewpoint TV (FTV) is no doubt a promising field for its better visual experience and incomparable interactivity. View synthesis is obviously a crucial technology for FTV; it enables to render images in unlimited numbers of virtual viewpoints with the information from limited numbers of reference view. In this paper, a novel hybrid synthesis framework is proposed and blending priority is explored. In contrast to the commonly used View Synthesis Reference Software (VSRS), the presented synthesis process is driven in consideration of the temporal correlation of image sequences. The temporal correlations will be exploited to produce fine synthesis results even near the foreground boundaries. As for the blending priority, this scheme proposed that one of the two reference views is selected to be the main reference view based on the distance between the reference views and virtual view, another view is chosen as the auxiliary viewpoint, just assist to fill the hole pixel with the help of background information. Significant improvement of the proposed approach over the state-of –the-art pixel-based virtual view synthesis method is presented, the results of the experiments show that subjective gains can be observed, and objective PSNR average gains range from 0.5 to 1.3 dB, while SSIM average gains range from 0.01 to 0.05.

Keywords: view synthesis, Gaussian mixture model, fusion method, hybrid framework

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53 Emergentist Metaphorical Creativity: Towards a Model of Analysing Metaphorical Creativity in Interactive Talk

Authors: Afef Badri

Abstract:

Metaphorical creativity does not constitute a static property of discourse. It is an interactive dynamic process created online. There has been a lack of research concerning online produced metaphorical creativity. This paper intends to account for metaphorical creativity in online talk-in-interaction as a dynamic process that emerges as discourse unfolds. It brings together insights from the emergentist approach to the study of metaphor in verbal interactions and insights from conceptual blending approach as a model for analysing online metaphorical constructions to propose a model for studying metaphorical creativity in interactive talk. The model is based on three focal points. First, metaphorical creativity is a dynamic emergent and open-to-change process that evolves in real time as interlocutors constantly blend and re-blend previous metaphorical contributions. Second, it is not a product of isolated individual minds but a joint achievement that is co-constructed and co-elaborated by interlocutors. The third and most important point is that the emergent process of metaphorical creativity is tightly shaped by contextual variables surrounding talk-in-interaction. It is grounded in the framework of interpretation of interlocutors. It is constrained by preceding contributions in a way that creates textual cohesion of the verbal exchange and it is also a goal-oriented process predefined by the communicative intention of each participant in a way that reveals the ideological coherence/incoherence of the entire conversation.

Keywords: Conceptual blending, communicative intention, the emergentist approach, metaphorical creativity, contextual variables, ideological coherence, textual cohesion

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52 The Microstructural and Mechanical Characterization of Organo-Clay-Modified Bitumen, Calcareous Aggregate, and Organo-Clay Blends

Authors: A. Gürses, T. B. Barın, Ç. Doğar

Abstract:

Bitumen has been widely used as the binder of aggregate in road pavement due to its good viscoelastic properties, as a viscous organic mixture with various chemical compositions. Bitumen is a liquid at high temperature and it becomes brittle at low temperatures, and this temperature-sensitivity can cause the rutting and cracking of the pavement and limit its application. Therefore, the properties of existing asphalt materials need to be enhanced. The pavement with polymer modified bitumen exhibits greater resistance to rutting and thermal cracking, decreased fatigue damage, as well as stripping and temperature susceptibility; however, they are expensive and their applications have disadvantages. Bituminous mixtures are composed of very irregular aggregates bound together with hydrocarbon-based asphalt, with a low volume fraction of voids dispersed within the matrix. Montmorillonite (MMT) is a layered silicate with low cost and abundance, which consists of layers of tetrahedral silicate and octahedral hydroxide sheets. Recently, the layered silicates have been widely used for the modification of polymers, as well as in many different fields. However, there are not too much studies related with the preparation of the modified asphalt with MMT, currently. In this study, organo-clay-modified bitumen, and calcareous aggregate and organo-clay blends were prepared by hot blending method with OMMT, which has been synthesized using a cationic surfactant (Cetyltrymethylammonium bromide, CTAB) and long chain hydrocarbon, and MMT. When the exchangeable cations in the interlayer region of pristine MMT were exchanged with hydrocarbon attached surfactant ions, the MMT becomes organophilic and more compatible with bitumen. The effects of the super hydrophobic OMMT onto the micro structural and mechanic properties (Marshall Stability and volumetric parameters) of the prepared blends were investigated. Stability and volumetric parameters of the blends prepared were measured using Marshall Test. Also, in order to investigate the morphological and micro structural properties of the organo-clay-modified bitumen and calcareous aggregate and organo-clay blends, their SEM and HRTEM images were taken. It was observed that the stability and volumetric parameters of the prepared mixtures improved significantly compared to the conventional hot mixes and even the stone matrix mixture. A micro structural analysis based on SEM images indicates that the organo-clay platelets dispersed in the bitumen have a dominant role in the increase of effectiveness of bitumen - aggregate interactions.

Keywords: hot mix asphalt, stone matrix asphalt, organo clay, Marshall test, calcareous aggregate, modified bitumen

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51 Performance Evaluation of Karanja Oil Based Biodiesel Engine Using Modified Genetic Algorithm

Authors: G. Bhushan, S. Dhingra, K. K. Dubey

Abstract:

This paper presents the evaluation of performance (BSFC and BTE), combustion (Pmax) and emission (CO, NOx, HC and smoke opacity) parameters of karanja biodiesel in a single cylinder, four stroke, direct injection diesel engine by considering significant engine input parameters (blending ratio, compression ratio and load torque). Multi-objective optimization of performance, combustion and emission parameters is also carried out in a karanja biodiesel engine using hybrid RSM-NSGA-II technique. The pareto optimum solutions are predicted by running the hybrid RSM-NSGA-II technique. Each pareto optimal solution is having its own importance. Confirmation tests are also conducted at randomly selected few pareto solutions to check the authenticity of the results.

Keywords: Genetic Algorithm, response surface methodology, Karanja biodiesel, single cylinder direct injection diesel engine, central composite rotatable design

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50 The Utilisation of Two Types of Fly Ashes Used as Cement Replacement in Soft Soil Stabilisation

Authors: Hassnen M. Jafer, W. Atherton, F. Ruddock, E. Loffill

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This study represents the results of an experimental work using two types of fly ashes as a cement replacement in soft soil stabilisation. The fly ashes (FA1 and FA2) used in this study are by-products resulting from an incineration processes between 800 and 1200 ˚C. The stabilised soil in this study was an intermediate plasticity silty clayey soil with medium organic matter content. The experimental works were initially conducted on soil treated with different percentages of FA1 (0, 3, 6, 9, 12, and 15%) to identify the optimum FA1 content. Then FA1 was chemically activated by FA2 which has high alkalinity by blending the optimum content of FA1 with different portions of FA2. The improvement levels were evaluated dependent on the results obtained from consistency limits and compaction tests along with the results of unconfined compressive strength (UCS) tests which were conducted on specimens of soil treated with FA1 and FA2 and exposed to different periods of curing (zero, 7, 14, and 28 days). The results indicated that the FA1 and FA2 used in this study effectively improved the physical and geotechnical properties of the soft soil where the index of plasticity (IP) was decreased significantly from 21 to 13.17 with 12% of FA1; however, there was a slight increase in IP with the use of FA2. Meanwhile, 12% of FA1 was identified as the optimum percentage improving the UCS of stabilised soil significantly. Furthermore, FA2 was found effective as a chemical activator to FA1 where the UCS was improved significantly after using FA2.

Keywords: Waste Materials, unconfined compressive strength, soft soil stabilisation

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49 Exploring the Role of Private Commercial Banks in Increasing Small and Medium Size Enterprises’ Financial Accessibility in Developing Countries: A Study in Bangladesh

Authors: Khondokar Farid Ahmmed, Robin Bown

Abstract:

It is widely recognized that the formal financing of Small and Medium Size Enterprises (SMEs) by Private Commercial Banks (PCBs) is restricted. Due to changing financial market competition, SMEs are now important customers to PCBs in the member countries of the Asian Development Bank (ADB). Various initiatives in enhancing the efficiency of risk assessment of PCBs have failed in increasing financing accessibility in the traditional financing system where information asymmetry is a key constraint. In this circumstance, PCBs need to undertake a holistic approach. Holistic approach refers to methods that attempt to fundamentally change established traditions. To undertake holistic approach, this study intends to find the entire established financing culture between PCBs and SMEs in a new lens beyond the tradition on the basis of two basic questions: “What is the traditional lending culture between PCBs and SMEs” and “What could be potential role of PCBs to develop that culture where focusing on SME financing to PCBs". This study considered formal SME financing in Bangladesh by focusing on SMEs applying for their first loan. Bangladesh is a member country of ADB. The data collection method is semi-structured and we utilized face-to-face interviews with in-depth branch managers, higher officials and owner-managers of SME customers of PCBs and higher officials of SME Foundation and the Bangladesh central bank. Discourse analysis method was used for data analysis on the frame of thematic discussion fully based on participants’ views. The research found that branch managers and loan officers have a high level of power in assessing and financing decision-making. There is a changing attitude in PCB sector in requiring flexible collateral assets. Branch managers (Loan Officers) consider value of business prospect of owner-mangers as complementary of collateral assets. However, the study found the assessment process of business prospect is entirely unstructured and linked with socio-cultural settings that does not support PCBs’ changing manner in terms of collateral requirement. The study redefined and classified collateral assets to include all financing constructs in a structure. The degree of value of the collateral assets determines the degree of business prospects. This study suggested applying an outside classroom-learning paradigm such as “knowledge tour” to enhance the value of the kinds of collateral assets. This is the scope of PCBs in increasing SMEs’ financing eligibility in win-win basis. The findings and proposition could be effective in other ADB member countries and audiences in the field.

Keywords: Financing, PCA, information asymmetry, PCB, CCA

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48 Leukocyte Detection Using Image Stitching and Color Overlapping Windows

Authors: Lina, Arlends Chris, Bagus Mulyawan, Agus B. Dharmawan

Abstract:

Blood cell analysis plays a significant role in the diagnosis of human health. As an alternative to the traditional technique conducted by laboratory technicians, this paper presents an automatic white blood cell (leukocyte) detection system using Image Stitching and Color Overlapping Windows. The advantage of this method is to present a detection technique of white blood cells that are robust to imperfect shapes of blood cells with various image qualities. The input for this application is images from a microscope-slide translation video. The preprocessing stage is performed by stitching the input images. First, the overlapping parts of the images are determined, then stitching and blending processes of two input images are performed. Next, the Color Overlapping Windows is performed for white blood cell detection which consists of color filtering, window candidate checking, window marking, finds window overlaps, and window cropping processes. Experimental results show that this method could achieve an average of 82.12% detection accuracy of the leukocyte images.

Keywords: image stitching, color overlapping windows, leukocyte detection

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47 Interactive Garments: Flexible Technologies for Textile Integration

Authors: Anupam Bhatia

Abstract:

Upon reviewing the literature and the pragmatic work done in the field of E- textiles, it is observed that the applications of wearable technologies have found a steady growth in the field of military, medical, industrial, sports; whereas fashion is at a loss to know how to treat this technology and bring it to market. The purpose of this paper is to understand the practical issues of integration of electronics in garments; cutting patterns for mass production, maintaining the basic properties of textiles and daily maintenance of garments that hinder the wide adoption of interactive fabric technology within Fashion and leisure wear. To understand the practical hindrances an experimental and laboratory approach is taken. “Techno Meets Fashion” has been an interactive fashion project where sensor technologies have been embedded with textiles that result in set of ensembles that are light emitting garments, sound sensing garments, proximity garments, shape memory garments etc. Smart textiles, especially in the form of textile interfaces, are drastically underused in fashion and other lifestyle product design. Clothing and some other textile products must be washable, which subjects to the interactive elements to water and chemical immersion, physical stress, and extreme temperature. The current state of the art tends to be too fragile for this treatment. The process for mass producing traditional textiles becomes difficult in interactive textiles. As cutting patterns from larger rolls of cloth and sewing them together to make garments breaks and reforms electronic connections in an uncontrolled manner. Because of this, interactive fabric elements are integrated by hand into textiles produced by standard methods. The Arduino has surely made embedding electronics into textiles much easier than before; even then electronics are not integral to the daily wear garments. Soft and flexible interfaces of MEMS (micro sensors and Micro actuators) can be an option to make this possible by blending electronics within E-textiles in a way that’s seamless and still retains functions of the circuits as well as the garment. Smart clothes, which offer simultaneously a challenging design and utility value, can be only mass produced if the demands of the body are taken care of i.e. protection, anthropometry, ergonomics of human movement, thermo- physiological regulation.

Keywords: Ambient intelligence, Wearable Technology, Shape Memory Materials, proximity sensors, sound sensing garments

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46 Biodiesel Production from Broiler Chicken Waste

Authors: John Abraham, Ramesh Saravana Kumar, Francis Xavier, Deepak Mathew

Abstract:

Broiler slaughter waste has become a major source of pollution throughout the world. Utilization of broiler slaughter waste by dry rendering process produced Rendered Chicken Oil (RCO), a cheap raw material for biodiesel production and Carcass Meal a feed ingredient for pets and fishes. Conversion of RCO into biodiesel may open new vistas for generating wealth from waste besides controlling the major havoc of environmental pollution. A two-step process to convert RCO to good quality Biodiesel was invented. Acid catalysed esterification of FFA followed by base catalysed transesterification of triglycerides was carried out after meticulously standardizing the methanol molar ratio, catalyst concentration, reaction temperature, and reaction time to obtain the maximum biodiesel yield of 97.62% and lowest glycerol yield of 6.96%. RCO biodiesel blend was tested in a CRDI diesel engine. The results revealed that the blending of commercial diesel with 20% RCO biodiesel (B20) lead to less engine wear, a quieter engine and better fuel economy. The better lubricating qualities of RCO B20 prevented over heating of engine, which prolongs the engine life. RCO B20 can reduce the import of crude oil and substantially reduce the engine emissions as proved by significantly lower smoke levels, thus mitigating climatic changes.

Keywords: Biodiesel, Engine Testing, broiler waste, Rendered Chicken Oil

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45 Thermodynamic Evaluation of Coupling APR1400 with a Thermal Desalination Plant

Authors: M. Gomaa Abdoelatef, Robert M. Field, Lee, Yong-Kwan

Abstract:

Growing human population has placed increased demands on water supplies and spurred a heightened interest in desalination infrastructure. Key elements of the economics of desalination projects are thermal and electrical inputs. With growing concerns over use of fossil fuels to (indirectly) supply these inputs, coupling of desalination with nuclear power production represents a significant opportunity. Individually, nuclear and desalination technologies have a long history and are relatively mature. For desalination, Reverse Osmosis (RO) has the lowest energy inputs. However, the economically driven output quality of the water produced using RO, which uses only electrical inputs, is lower than the output water quality from thermal desalination plants. Therefore, modern desalination projects consider that RO should be coupled with thermal desalination technologies (MSF, MED, or MED-TVC) with attendant steam inputs to permit blending to produce various qualities of water. A large nuclear facility is well positioned to dispatch large quantities of both electrical and thermal power. This paper considers the supply of thermal energy to a large desalination facility to examine heat balance impact on the nuclear steam cycle. The APR1400 nuclear plant is selected as prototypical from both a capacity and turbine cycle heat balance perspective to examine steam supply and the impact on electrical output. Extraction points and quantities of steam are considered parametrically along with various types of thermal desalination technologies to form the basis for further evaluations of economically optimal approaches to the interface of nuclear power production with desalination projects. In our study, the thermodynamic evaluation will be executed by DE-TOP, an IAEA sponsored program. DE-TOP has capabilities to analyze power generation systems coupled to desalination plants through various steam extraction positions, taking into consideration the isolation loop between the nuclear and the thermal desalination facilities (i.e., for radiological isolation).

Keywords: Desalination, Cogeneration, MED, MED-TVC, MSF, DE-TOP, IAEA, APR1400

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44 The Impact of Bank Consolidation on Lending to SMES in Nigeria

Authors: Chimaobi Valentine Okolo

Abstract:

This paper seeks to assess the implications of bank consolidation on lending, which largely determine the survival and performance of small and medium scale enterprises and in turn the development of the Nigerian economy. Ordinary least square technique, correlation matrix test and Granger –causality test were employed to measure the extent to which lending to small and medium scale enterprises were influenced. The result showed that bank deposit (BD) impacted on lending to small and medium scale enterprises. Commercial and merchant bank lending rate had statistically insignificant effect on the dependent variable. There is a shift of focus by commercial banks from small and medium scale enterprises (small customers) to major investors (big customers). While micro finance banks work hard at providing funds to small and medium scale entrepreneurs, their capacity to meet the needs of these entrepreneurs is constrained. The capital and deposits of micro finance bank should be boosted in order to effectively support small and medium scale enterprises through loans.

Keywords: Bank consolidation, Asset size, lending, small and medium enterprises

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43 Impact Assessment of Credit Policy and Medical Credit Facility (MCF) on Nigerian Private Sector Health Market: Evidence from Eight Nigerian States

Authors: Chimaobi V. Okolo, Kenneth A. Okpala, Johnbull S. Ogboi

Abstract:

A teeming set of doctors that graduated from various universities within and outside Nigeria with the hope of practicing in the country, has their hope shattered because of poor financing, lack of medical equipments and a very weak healthcare systems. Such hydra headed challenges, allows room for quackery which increasingly contributes to the cause of mortality in Nigeria. With a view of reversing the challenges of healthcare delivery and financing in Nigeria, African Health Market for Equity (AHME), a project funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation [With contribution from Department For International Development (DFID)] and currently implemented in three African Countries (Nigeria, Kenya and Ghana) over a Five (5) year period supports the healthcare sector via Medical credit fund (MCF). The study examines the impact of credit policy and medical credit funding on Nigerian health market. Ordinary least square analysis, correlation and granger causality tests were employed to measure the extent to which the Nigerian healthcare market has been influenced. Medical credit fund significantly and positively influenced average monthly turnover of private healthcare providers and Commercial bank’s lending rate had a weak relationship with access to credit/approved loans (13.46%). The programme has so far made 13.91% progress, which is very poor, considering the minimum targeted private health care providers (437.6) and expected number of loan approvals (180.4) for the two years. Medical credit policy in Nigeria should be revised to include private healthcare providers in rural area for more positive impact and increased returns. Good brand advert and sensitization of the programme to stakeholders and health pressure group, and an extension of the programme beyond five years is necessary to better address the issues raised in the study.

Keywords: Credit, Policy, health market, medical credit facility

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42 Effect of Starch and Plasticizer Types and Fiber Content on Properties of Polylactic Acid/Thermoplastic Starch Blend

Authors: Rangrong Yoksan, Amporn Sane, Nattaporn Khanoonkon, Chanakorn Yokesahachart, Narumol Noivoil, Khanh Minh Dang

Abstract:

Polylactic acid (PLA) is the most commercially available bio-based and biodegradable plastic at present. PLA has been used in plastic related industries including single-used containers, disposable and environmentally friendly packaging owing to its renewability, compostability, biodegradability, and safety. Although PLA demonstrates reasonably good optical, physical, mechanical and barrier properties comparable to the existing petroleum-based plastics, its brittleness and mold shrinkage as well as its price are the points to be concerned for the production of rigid and semi-rigid packaging. Blending PLA with other bio-based polymers including thermoplastic starch (TPS) is an alternative not only to achieve a complete bio-based plastic, but also to reduce the brittleness, shrinkage during molding and production cost of the PLA-based products. TPS is a material produced mainly from starch which is cheap, renewable, biodegradable, compostable, and nontoxic. It is commonly prepared by a plasticization of starch under applying heat and shear force. Although glycerol has been reported as one of the most plasticizers used for preparing TPS, its migration caused the surface stickiness of the TPS products. In some cases, mixed plasticizers or natural fibers have been applied to impede the retrogradation of starch or reduce the migration of glycerol. The introduction of fibers into TPS-based materials could reinforce the polymer matrix as well. Therefore, the objective of the present research is to study the effect of starch type (i.e. native starch and phosphate starch), plasticizer type (i.e. glycerol and xylitol with a weight ratio of glycerol to xylitol of 100:0, 75:25, 50:50, 25:75 and 0:100) and fiber content (i.e. in the range of 1-25 %wt) on properties of PLA/TPS blend and composite. PLA/TPS blends and composites were prepared using a twin-screw extruder and then converted into dumbbell-shaped specimens using an injection molding machine. The PLA/TPS blends prepared by using phosphate starch showed higher tensile strength and stiffness than the blends prepared by using native one. In contrast, the blends from native starch exhibited higher extensibility and heat distortion temperature (HDT) than those from the modified starch. Increasing xylitol content resulted in enhanced tensile strength, stiffness and water resistance, but decreased extensibility and HDT of the PLA/TPS blend. Tensile properties and hydrophobicity of the blend could be improved by incorporating silane treated-jute fibers.

Keywords: Composite, thermoplastic starch, polylactic acid, blend, Jute fiber

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41 Effects of Cerium Oxide Nanoparticle Addition in Diesel and Diesel-Biodiesel Blends on the Performance Characteristics of a CI Engine

Authors: Abbas Alli Taghipoor Bafghi, Hosein Bakhoda, Fateme Khodaei Chegeni

Abstract:

An experimental investigation is carried out to establish the performance characteristics of a compression ignition engine while using cerium oxide nanoparticles as additive in neat diesel and diesel-biodiesel blends. In the first phase of the experiments, stability of neat diesel and diesel-biodiesel fuel blends with the addition of cerium oxide nanoparticles is analyzed. After series of experiments, it is found that the blends subjected to high speed blending followed by ultrasonic bath stabilization improves the stability. In the second phase, performance characteristics are studied using the stable fuel blends in a single cylinder four stroke engine coupled with an electrical dynamometer and a data acquisition system. The cerium oxide acts as an oxygen donating catalyst and provides oxygen for combustion. The activation energy of cerium oxide acts to burn off carbon deposits within the engine cylinder at the wall temperature and prevents the deposition of non-polar compounds on the cylinder wall results reduction in HC emissions. The tests revealed that cerium oxide nanoparticles can be used as additive in diesel and diesel-biodiesel blends to improve complete combustion of the fuel significantly.

Keywords: Nanoparticles, Diesel Engine, cerium oxide, diesel-biodiesel blends

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40 Combustion and Emissions Performance of Syngas Fuels Derived from Palm Kernel Shell and Polyethylene (PE) Waste via Catalytic Steam Gasification

Authors: Chaouki Ghenai

Abstract:

Computational fluid dynamics analysis of the burning of syngas fuels derived from biomass and plastic solid waste mixture through gasification process is presented in this paper. The syngas fuel is burned in gas turbine can combustor. Gas turbine can combustor with swirl is designed to burn the fuel efficiently and reduce the emissions. The main objective is to test the impact of the alternative syngas fuel compositions and lower heating value on the combustion performance and emissions. The syngas fuel is produced by blending palm kernel shell (PKS) with polyethylene (PE) waste via catalytic steam gasification (fluidized bed reactor). High hydrogen content syngas fuel was obtained by mixing 30% PE waste with PKS. The syngas composition obtained through the gasification process is 76.2% H2, 8.53% CO, 4.39% CO2 and 10.90% CH4. The lower heating value of the syngas fuel is LHV = 15.98 MJ/m3. Three fuels were tested in this study natural gas (100%CH4), syngas fuel and pure hydrogen (100% H2). The power from the combustor was kept constant for all the fuels tested in this study. The effect of syngas fuel composition and lower heating value on the flame shape, gas temperature, mass of carbon dioxide (CO2) and nitrogen oxides (NOX) per unit of energy generation is presented in this paper. The results show an increase of the peak flame temperature and NO mass fractions for the syngas and hydrogen fuels compared to natural gas fuel combustion. Lower average CO2 emissions at the exit of the combustor are obtained for the syngas compared to the natural gas fuel.

Keywords: Combustion, CFD, Emissions, Solid Waste, gasification, Gas Turbine Combustor, Syngas and Waste to Energy

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39 Banking Union: A New Step towards Completing the Economic and Monetary Union

Authors: Marijana Ivanov, Roman Šubić

Abstract:

This study analyzes the critical gaps in the architecture of European stability and the expected role of the banking union as the new important step towards completing the Economic and Monetary Union that should enable the creation of safe and sound financial sector for the euro area market. The single rulebook together with the Single Supervisory Mechanism and the Single Resolution Mechanism - as two main pillars of the banking union, should provide a consistent application of common rules and administrative standards for supervision, recovery and resolution of banks – with the final aim of replacing the former bail-out practice with the bail-in system through which possible future bank failures would be resolved by their own funds, i.e. with minimal costs for taxpayers and real economy. In this way, the vicious circle between banks and sovereigns would be broken. It would also reduce the financial fragmentation recorded in the years of crisis as the result of divergent behaviors in risk premium, lending activities and interest rates between the core and the periphery. In addition, it should strengthen the effectiveness of monetary transmission channels, in particular the credit channels and overflows of liquidity on the money market which, due to the fragmentation of the common financial market, has been significantly disabled in period of crisis. However, contrary to all the positive expectations related to the future functioning of the banking union, major findings of this study indicate that characteristics of the economic system in which the banking union will operate should not be ignored. The euro area is an integration of strong and weak entities with large differences in economic development, wealth, assets of banking systems, growth rates and accountability of fiscal policy. The analysis indicates that low and unbalanced economic growth remains a challenge for the maintenance of financial stability and this problem cannot be resolved just by a single supervision. In many countries bank assets exceed their GDP by several times and large banks are still a matter of concern, because of their systemic importance for individual countries and the euro zone as a whole. The creation of the Single Supervisory Mechanism and the Single Resolution Mechanism is a response to the European crisis, which has particularly affected peripheral countries and caused the associated loop between the banking crisis and the sovereign debt crisis, but has also influenced banks’ balance sheets in the core countries, as the result of crossborder capital flows. The creation of the SSM and the SRM should prevent the similar episodes to happen again and should also provide a new opportunity for strengthening of economic and financial systems of the peripheral countries. On the other hand, there is a potential threat that future focus of the ECB, resolution mechanism and other relevant institutions will be extremely oriented towards large and significant banks (whereby one half of them operate in the core and most important euro area countries), and therefore it remains questionable to what extent will the common resolution funds will be used for rescue of less important institutions. Recent geopolitical developments will be the optimal indicator to show whether the previously established mechanisms are sufficient enough to maintain the adequate financial stability in the euro area market.

Keywords: Financial Integration, banking union, single supervisory mechanism (SSM)

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38 Interest Rate Fluctuation Effect on Commercial Bank’s Fixed Fund Deposit in Nigeria

Authors: Okolo Chimaobi Valentine

Abstract:

Commercial banks in Nigeria adopted many strategies to attract fresh deposits including the use of high deposit rate. However, pricing of banking services moved in favor of the banks at the expense of customers, resulting in their seeking other investment alternatives rather than saving their money in the bank. Both deposit and lending rates were greatly influenced by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) decision on interest rate. Therefore, commercial bank effort to attract deposits via manipulation of her rates was greatly limited, otherwise the banks will be giving out more than it earned. The study aimed at examining the relationship between interest rate and fixed fund deposit of commercial banks, how policy-controlled interest rate affected commercial bank’s fixed fund deposit The researcher employed ordinary least square technique, using, multiple linear regression, unrestricted vector auto-regression, correlation matrix test, granger causality and impulse response graph in the analysis. Commercial bank’s interest rates affected commercial bank’s fixed fund deposit significantly while policy-controlled interest rate did not significantly transmit through the commercial bank’s interest rates to affect fixed fund deposit. While commercial banks seek creative ways to expand their fixed fund deposit, policy authorities in Nigeria should better coordinate interest rate fluctuation and induce competition in the entire financial sector.

Keywords: interest rate, commercial bank, fixed fund deposit, fluctuation effects

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37 Secure Mobile E-Business Applications

Authors: Hala A. Alrumaih

Abstract:

It is widely believed that mobile device is a promising technology for lending the opportunity for the third wave of electronic commerce. Mobile devices have changed the way companies do business. Many applications are under development or being incorporated into business processes. In this day, mobile applications are a vital component of any industry strategy.One of the greatest benefits of selling merchandise and providing services on a mobile application is that it widens a company’s customer base significantly.Mobile applications are accessible to interested customers across regional and international borders in different electronic business (e-business) area. But there is a dark side to this success story. The security risks associated with mobile devices and applications are very significant. This paper introduces a broad risk analysis for the various threats, vulnerabilities, and risks in mobile e-business applications and presents some important risk mitigation approaches. It reviews and compares two different frameworks for security assurance in mobile e-business applications. Based on the comparison, the paper suggests some recommendations for applications developers and business owners in mobile e-business application development process.

Keywords: e-Business, Mobile Applications, risk mitigations, security assurance

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36 Management Challenges and Product Quality of Fish Farms in Greece

Authors: S. Anastasiou, C. Nathanailides, P. Logothetis, G. Kanlis

Abstract:

The purpose of the present work is to review some data for the management challenges that the aquaculture industry in Greece is currently facing. The results indicate that Greek aquaculture fish farms apply Human Resources Management (HRM) practices which can increase motivation, commitment and job satisfaction of their personnel. In turn, these practices can increase the productivity of the business. The Greek fish farms appear to invest in research and technological innovation with a good record in research activities and the generation of patents. Interestingly, the results of the present work were carried out during the period of the recent economic crisis in Greece. Several sectors of the Greek economy were severely affected by the financial problems of the Greek government and the Greek banks. Under the adverse economical conditions created by the Greek economic crisis, even the Greek aquaculture industry, which historically is considered as a thriving national exporting business sector, experienced harsh economic and market conditions. As a result of the global, European and national economic crisis, consumption of fish dropped while companies had to hold most of their stocked fish in order to regulated the flow to the market and the price. This occurred at a time where Banks in Greece had their own financial crisis – banking crisis - which resulted in limited access to lending for the all business sectors of the national economy including the Greek aquaculture industry. In spite of these economic conditions, the Greek aquaculture industry, after a series of mergers and acquisitions, has now stabilized production and exhibits very good prospects for future growth. Evidently, the firms had to cut salaries and on some occasions even pay their staff in arrears. Nevertheless, the results presented in this paper indicate that during the economic crisis, the surveyed fish farms maintained their HRM practices, investing in their human capital and technological input. In fact, human capital and technological input are the ticket for future success of companies in any business sector.

Keywords: Aquaculture, Human Resources Management

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35 Synthesis and Characterization of Recycled Isotactic Polypropylene Nanocomposites Containing Date Wood Fiber

Authors: Habib Shaban

Abstract:

Nanocomposites of isotactic polypropylene (iPP) and date wood fiber were prepared after modification of the host matrix by reactive extrusion grafting of maleic anhydride. Chemical and mechanical treatment of date wood flour (WF) was conducted to obtain nanocrystalline cellulose. Layered silicates (clay) were partially intercalated with date wood fiber, and the modified layered silicate was used as filler in the PP matrix via a melt-blending process. The tensile strength of composites prepared from wood fiber modified clay was greater than that of the iPP-clay and iPP-WF composites at a 6% filler concentration, whereas deterioration of mechanical properties was observed when clay and WF were used alone for reinforcement. The dispersion of the filler in the matrix significantly decreased after clay modification with cellulose at higher concentrations, as shown by X-ray diffraction (XRD) data.

Keywords: Nanocomposites, isotactic polypropylene, intercalated, melt-blending, date wood flour

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34 The Customization of 3D Last Form Design Based On Weighted Blending

Authors: Shih-Wen Hsiao, Chu-Hsuan Lee, Rong-Qi Chen

Abstract:

When it comes to last, it is regarded as the critical foundation of shoe design and development. Not only the last relates to the comfort of shoes wearing but also it aids the production of shoe styling and manufacturing. In order to enhance the efficiency and application of last development, a computer aided methodology for customized last form designs is proposed in this study. The reverse engineering is mainly applied to the process of scanning for the last form. Then the minimum energy is used for the revision of surface continuity, the surface of the last is reconstructed with the feature curves of the scanned last. When the surface of a last is reconstructed, based on the foundation of the proposed last form reconstruction module, the weighted arithmetic mean method is applied to the calculation on the shape morphing which differs from the grading for the control mesh of last, and the algorithm of subdivision is used to create the surface of last mesh, thus the feet-fitting 3D last form of different sizes is generated from its original form feature with functions remained. Finally, the practicability of the proposed methodology is verified through later case studies.

Keywords: Reverse Engineering, customization, weighted morphing, shape blending

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