Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 31

Search results for: Ángel M. Matos

31 Migration from Commercial to in-House Developed Learning Management Systems

Authors: Lejla A. Bexheti, Visar S. Shehu, Adrian A. Besimi

Abstract:

The Learning Management Systems present learning environment which offers a collection of e-learning tools in a package that allows a common interface and information sharing among the tools. South East European University initial experience in LMS was with the usage of the commercial LMS-ANGEL. After a three year experience on ANGEL usage because of expenses that were very high it was decided to develop our own software. As part of the research project team for the in-house design and development of the new LMS, we primarily had to select the features that would cover our needs and also comply with the actual trends in the area of software development, and then design and develop the system. In this paper we present the process of LMS in-house development for South East European University, its architecture, conception and strengths with a special accent on the process of migration and integration with other enterprise applications.

Keywords: e-learning tools, LMS, migration, user feedback.

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30 Making Waves: Preparing the Next Generation of Bilingual Medical Doctors

Authors: Edith Esparza-Young, Ángel M. Matos, Yaritza Gonzalez, Kirthana Sugunathevan

Abstract:

Introduction: This research describes the existing medical school program which supports a multicultural setting and bilingualism. The rise of Spanish speakers in the United States has led to the recruitment of bilingual medical students who can serve the evolving demographics. This paper includes anecdotal evidence, narratives and the latest research on the outcomes of supporting a multilingual academic experience in medical school and beyond. People in the United States will continue to need health care from physicians who have experience with multicultural competence. Physicians who are bilingual and possess effective communication skills will be in high demand. Methodologies: This research is descriptive. Through this descriptive research, the researcher will describe the qualities and characteristics of the existing medical school programs, curriculum, and student services. Additionally, the researcher will shed light on the existing curriculum in the medical school and also describe specific programs which help to serve as safety nets to support diverse populations. The method included observations of the existing program and the implementation of the medical school program, specifically the Accelerated Review Program, the Language Education and Professional Communication Program, student organizations and the Global Health Institute. Concluding Statement: This research identified and described characteristics of the medical school’s program. The research explained and described the current and present phenomenon of this medical program, which has focused on increasing the graduation of bilingual and minority physicians. The findings are based on observations of the curriculum, programs and student organizations which evolves and remains innovative to stay current with student enrollment.

Keywords: Bilingual, English, medicine, doctor.

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29 Numerical Simulation on Heat Transfer Enhancement in Channel by Triangular Ribs

Authors: Tuqa Abdulrazzaq, Hussein Togun, M. K. A. Ariffin, S. N. Kazi, NM Adam, S. Masuri

Abstract:

Turbulent heat transfer to fluid flow through channel with triangular ribs of different angles are presented in this paper. Ansys 14 ICEM and Ansys 14 Fluent are used for meshing process and solving Navier stokes equations respectively. In this investigation three angles of triangular ribs with the range of Reynolds number varied from 20000 to 60000 at constant surface temperature are considered. The results show that the Nusselt number increases with the increase of Reynolds number for all cases at constant surface temperature. According to the profile of local Nusselt number on ribs walled of channel, the peak is at the midpoint between the two ribs. The maximum value of average Nusselt number is obtained for triangular ribs of angel 60°and at Reynolds number of 60000 compared to the Nusselt number for the ribs of angel 90° and 45° and at same Reynolds number. The recirculation regions generated by the ribs corresponding to the velocity streamline show the largest recirculation region at triangular ribs of angle 60° which also provides the highest enhancement of heat transfer.

Keywords: Ribs channel, Turbulent flow, Heat transfer enhancement, Recirculation flow.

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28 The Importance of 3D Mesh Generation for Large Eddy Simulation of Gas – Solid Turbulent Flows in a Fluidized Beds

Authors: G. González-Silva, E. M. Matos, W. P. Martignoni, M. Mori

Abstract:

The objective of this work is to show a procedure for mesh generation in a fluidized bed using large eddy simulations (LES) of a filtered two-fluid model. The experimental data were obtained by [1] in a laboratory fluidized bed. Results show that it is possible to use mesh with less cells as compared to RANS turbulence model with granular kinetic theory flow (KTGF). Also, the numerical results validate the experimental data near wall of the bed, which cannot be predicted by RANS.model.

Keywords: LES, Mesh, Gas-Solid, Fluidized bed

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27 Computational Algorithm for Obtaining Abelian Subalgebras in Lie Algebras

Authors: Manuel Ceballos, Juan Nunez, Angel F. Tenorio

Abstract:

The set of all abelian subalgebras is computationally obtained for any given finite-dimensional Lie algebra, starting from the nonzero brackets in its law. More concretely, an algorithm is described and implemented to compute a basis for each nontrivial abelian subalgebra with the help of the symbolic computation package MAPLE. Finally, it is also shown a brief computational study for this implementation, considering both the computing time and the used memory.

Keywords: Solvable Lie algebra, maximal abelian dimension, algorithm.

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26 Quality Control of Automotive Gearbox Based On Vibration Signal Analysis

Authors: Nilson Barbieri, Bruno Matos Martins, Gabriel de Sant'Anna Vitor Barbieri

Abstract:

In more complex systems, such as automotive gearbox, a rigorous treatment of the data is necessary because there are several moving parts (gears, bearings, shafts, etc.), and in this way, there are several possible sources of errors and also noise. The basic objective of this work is the detection of damage in automotive gearbox. The detection methods used are the wavelet method, the bispectrum; advanced filtering techniques (selective filtering) of vibrational signals and mathematical morphology. Gearbox vibration tests were performed (gearboxes in good condition and with defects) of a production line of a large vehicle assembler. The vibration signals are obtained using five accelerometers in different positions of the sample. The results obtained using the kurtosis, bispectrum, wavelet and mathematical morphology showed that it is possible to identify the existence of defects in automotive gearboxes.

Keywords: Automotive gearbox, mathematical morphology, wavelet, bispectrum.

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25 Intellectual Capital and Transparency in Universities: An Empirical Study

Authors: Yolanda Ramírez, Ángel Tejada, Agustín Baidez

Abstract:

This paper shows the general perceptions of Spanish university stakeholders in relation to the university’s annual reports and the adequacy and potential of intellectual capital reporting. To this end, a questionnaire was designed and sent to every member of the Social Councils of Spanish public universities. It was thought that these participants would provide a good example of the attitude of university stakeholders since they represent the different social groups connected with universities. From the results of this study we are in the position of confirming the need for universities to offer information on intellectual capital in their accounting information model.

Keywords: Intellectual capital, disclosure, stakeholders, universities, annual report.

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24 Mix Goat and Sheep Yogurt: Development and Product Characterization

Authors: Susana Matos, António Pinto, Conceição Castilho, Paula Reis Correia, António Cardoso Monteiro

Abstract:

Yogurts are prepared by fermenting milk with bacterial cultures consisting of a mixture of Streptococcus ssp. thermophilus and Lactobacillus delbrueckii ssp. bulgaricus. The main aim of this investigation was to develop a majority goat yogurt, with the addition of sheep milk in order to have a final product with good physicochemical quality properties and sensorial attributes. Four types of yogurts were prepared presenting the following proportion of goat and sheep milk respectively: C100 – 100%; C80 – 80%/20%; C60 – 60%/40%; C50 – 50%/50%. The goat milk was from the Serrana Jarmelista breed and the sheep milk from the Serra da Estrela breed. The inclusion of sheep milk improved attractiveness to consumers, and it also improved the nutritional value of the product, mainly the fatty acid and mineral contents. The C50 yogurt was preferred by 28% of the panellists, followed by the C100 with 16%  and the commercial cow yogurt was 40% of preferences.

Keywords: Goat, sheep, yogurt.

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23 The Relevance of Intellectual Capital: An Analysis of Spanish Universities

Authors: Yolanda Ramírez, Ángel Tejada, Agustín Baidez

Abstract:

In recent years, the intellectual capital reporting in higher education institutions has been acquiring progressive importance worldwide. Intellectual capital approaches becomes critical at universities, mainly due to the fact that knowledge is the main output as well as input in these institutions. Universities produce knowledge, either through scientific and technical research (the results of investigation, publications, etc.) or through teaching (students trained and productive relationships with their stakeholders). The purpose of the present paper is to identify the intangible elements about which university stakeholders demand most information. The results of a study done at Spanish universities are used to see which groups of universities have stakeholders who are more proactive to the disclosure of intellectual capital.

Keywords: Intellectual capital, universities, Spain, cluster analysis.

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22 The Effects of an Information Delivery Modality on Psychology of E-learning Students

Authors: Eunil Park, Angel P. del Pobil

Abstract:

Does a communication modality matter in delivering e-learning information? With the recent growth of broadcasting systems, media technologies and e-learning contents, various systems with different communication modalities have been introduced. In accordance with these trends, this study examines the effects of the information delivery modality on psychology of students. Findings from an experiment indicated that the delivering information which includes a video modality elicited higher degrees of credibility, quality, representativeness of content, and perceived suitability for delivering information than those of auditory information. However, there is no difference between content liking and attitude. The Implications of the findings and the limitations are discussed.

Keywords: Communication modality, e-learning, multimodality, students.

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21 Voluntary Information of Intellectual Capital Disclosed Online by Public Spanish Universities

Authors: Yolanda Ramírez, Ángel Tejada, Agustín Baidez

Abstract:

The purpose of this paper is to examine the quality of voluntary intellectual capital disclosure by public Spanish universities on their websites. To this end, a content analysis was used to analyze the websites of 50 public Spanish universities i 2016. The results of this study show that human capital was the most disclosed category with relational capital being the least frequently disclosed in Spain. However, the quality of structural capital disclosures was higher than relational and human capital. Finally, most IC disclosures were narrative in nature.

Keywords: Intellectual capital, quality disclosure, websites, universities, Spain.

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20 Application of Advanced Oxidation Processes to Mefenamic Acid Elimination

Authors: Olga Gimeno, Javier Rivas, Angel Encinas, Fernando Beltran

Abstract:

The elimimation of mefenamic acid has been carried out by photolysis, ozonation, adsorption onto activated carbon (AC) and combinations of the previous single systems (O3+AC and O3+UV). The results obtained indicate that mefenamic acid is not photo-reactive, showing a relatively low quantum yield of the order of 6 x 10-4 mol Einstein-1. Application of ozone to mefenamic aqueous solutions instantaneously eliminates the pharmaceutical, achieving simultaneously a 40% of mineralization. Addition of AC to the ozonation process does not enhance the process, moreover, mineralization is completely inhibited if compared to results obtained by single ozonation. The combination of ozone and UV radiation led to the best results in terms of mineralization (60% after 120 min).

Keywords: Photolysis, mefenamic acid, ozone, activated carbon.

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19 Statistical Analysis of the Factors that Influence the Properties of Blueberries from Cultivar Bluecrop

Authors: Raquel P. F. Guiné, Susana R. Matos, Daniela V. T. A. Costa, Fernando J. Gonçalves

Abstract:

Because blueberries are worldwide recognized as a good source of beneficial components, their consumption has increased in the past decades, and so have the scientific works about their properties. Hence, this work was undertaken to evaluate the effect of some production and conservation factors on the properties of blueberries from cultivar Bluecrop. The physical and chemical analyses were done according to established methodologies and then all data was treated using software SPSS for assessment of the possible differences among the factors investigated and/or the correlations between the variables at study. The results showed that location of production influenced some of the berries properties (caliber, sugars, antioxidant activity, color and texture) and that the age of the bushes was correlated with moisture, sugars and acidity, as well as lightness. On the other hand, altitude of the farm only was correlated to sugar content. With regards to conservation, it influenced only anthocyanins content and DPPH antioxidant activity. Finally, the type of extract and the order of extraction had a pronounced influence on all the phenolic properties evaluated.

Keywords: Antioxidant activity, blueberry, conservation, geographical origin, phenolic compounds, statistical analysis.

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18 New Graph Similarity Measurements based on Isomorphic and Nonisomorphic Data Fusion and their Use in the Prediction of the Pharmacological Behavior of Drugs

Authors: Irene Luque Ruiz, Manuel Urbano Cuadrado, Miguel Ángel Gómez-Nieto

Abstract:

New graph similarity methods have been proposed in this work with the aim to refining the chemical information extracted from molecules matching. For this purpose, data fusion of the isomorphic and nonisomorphic subgraphs into a new similarity measure, the Approximate Similarity, was carried out by several approaches. The application of the proposed method to the development of quantitative structure-activity relationships (QSAR) has provided reliable tools for predicting several pharmacological parameters: binding of steroids to the globulin-corticosteroid receptor, the activity of benzodiazepine receptor compounds, and the blood brain barrier permeability. Acceptable results were obtained for the models presented here.

Keywords: Graph similarity, Nonisomorphic dissimilarity, Approximate similarity, Drug activity prediction.

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17 Intellectual Capital Report for Universities

Authors: Yolanda Ramírez Córcoles, Ángel Tejad Ponce, Agustín Baidez González

Abstract:

Intellectual capital reporting becomes critical at universities, mainly due to the fact that knowledge is the main output as well as input in these institutions. In addition, universities have continuous external demands for greater information and transparency about the use of public funds, and are increasingly provided with greater autonomy regarding their organization, management, and budget allocation. This situation requires new management and reporting systems. The purpose of the present study is to provide a model for intellectual capital report in Spanish universities. To this end, a questionnaire was sent to every member of the Social Councils of Spanish public universities in order to identify which intangible elements university stakeholders demand most. Our proposal for an intellectual capital report aims to act as a guide to help the Spanish universities on the road to the presentation of information on intellectual capital which can assist stakeholders to make the right decisions.

Keywords: Intellectual capital, Spain, report, universities.

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16 A Survey on Ambient Intelligence in Agricultural Technology

Authors: C. Angel, S. Asha

Abstract:

Despite the advances made in various new technologies, application of these technologies for agriculture still remains a formidable task, as it involves integration of diverse domains for monitoring the different process involved in agricultural management. Advances in ambient intelligence technology represents one of the most powerful technology for increasing the yield of agricultural crops and to mitigate the impact of water scarcity, climatic change and methods for managing pests, weeds and diseases. This paper proposes a GPS-assisted, machine to machine solutions that combine information collected by multiple sensors for the automated management of paddy crops. To maintain the economic viability of paddy cultivation, the various techniques used in agriculture are discussed and a novel system which uses ambient intelligence technique is proposed in this paper. The ambient intelligence based agricultural system gives a great scope.

Keywords: Ambient Intelligence, Agricultural technology, smart agriculture, precise farming.

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15 Design of a Novel Inclination Sensor Utilizing Grayscale Image

Authors: Tuhin Subhra Sarkar, Subir Das

Abstract:

Several research works have been done in recent times utilizing grayscale image for the measurement of many physical phenomena. In this present paper, we have designed an embedded based inclination sensor utilizing the grayscale image with a resolution of 0.3º. The sensor module consists of a circular shaped metal disc, laminated with grayscale image and an optical transreceiver. The sensor principle is based on temporal changes in light intensity by the movement of grayscale image with the inclination of the target surface and the variation of light intensity has been detected in terms of voltage by the signal processing circuit (SPC).The output of SPC is fed to a microcontroller program to display the inclination angel digitally. The experimental results are shown a satisfactory performance of the sensor in a small inclination measuring range of -40º to + 40º with a sensitivity of 62 mV/°.

Keywords: Grayscale image, Inclination Sensor, Microcontroller Program, Signal Processing Circuit.

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14 Combining Similarity and Dissimilarity Measurements for the Development of QSAR Models Applied to the Prediction of Antiobesity Activity of Drugs

Authors: Irene Luque Ruiz, Manuel Urbano Cuadrado, Miguel Ángel Gómez-Nieto

Abstract:

In this paper we study different similarity based approaches for the development of QSAR model devoted to the prediction of activity of antiobesity drugs. Classical similarity approaches are compared regarding to dissimilarity models based on the consideration of the calculation of Euclidean distances between the nonisomorphic fragments extracted in the matching process. Combining the classical similarity and dissimilarity approaches into a new similarity measure, the Approximate Similarity was also studied, and better results were obtained. The application of the proposed method to the development of quantitative structure-activity relationships (QSAR) has provided reliable tools for predicting of inhibitory activity of drugs. Acceptable results were obtained for the models presented here.

Keywords: Graph similarity, Nonisomorphic dissimilarity, Approximate similarity, Drugs activity prediction.

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13 A Straightforward Approach for Determining the Weights of Decision Makers Based on Angle Cosine and Projection Method

Authors: Qiang Yang, Ping-An Du

Abstract:

Group decision making with multiple attribute has attracted intensive concern in the decision analysis area. This paper assumes that the contributions of all the decision makers (DMs) are not equal to the decision process based on different knowledge and experience in group setting. The aim of this paper is to develop a novel approach to determine weights of DMs in the group decision making problems. In this paper, the weights of DMs are determined in the group decision environment via angle cosine and projection method. First of all, the average decision of all individual decisions is defined as the ideal decision. After that, we define the weight of each decision maker (DM) by aggregating the angle cosine and projection between individual decision and ideal decision with associated direction indicator μ. By using the weights of DMs, all individual decisions are aggregated into a collective decision. Further, the preference order of alternatives is ranked in accordance with the overall row value of collective decision. Finally, an example in a chemical company is provided to illustrate the developed approach.

Keywords: Angel cosine, ideal decision, projection method, weights of decision makers.

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12 Polishing Machine Based on High-Pressure Water Jet

Authors: Mohammad A. Khasawneh

Abstract:

The design of high pressure water jet based polishing equipment and its fabrication conducted in this study is reported herein, together with some preliminary test results for assessing its applicability for HMA surface polishing. This study also provides preliminary findings concerning the test variables, such as the rotational speed, the water jet pressure, the abrasive agent used, and the impact angel that were experimentally investigated in this study. The preliminary findings based on four trial tests (two on large slab specimens and two on small size gyratory compacted specimens), however, indicate that both friction and texture values tend to increase with the polishing durations for two combinations of pressure and rotation speed of the rotary deck. It seems that the more polishing action the specimen is subjected to; the aggregate edges are created such that the surface texture values are increased with the accompanied increase in friction values. It may be of interest (but which is outside the scope of this study) to investigate if the similar trend exist for HMA prepared with aggregate source that is sand and gravel.

Keywords: High-pressure, water jet, Friction, Texture, Polishing, Statistical Analysis.

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11 Argon/Oxygen Plasma Surface Modification of Biopolymers for Improvement of Wettability and Wear Resistance

Authors: Binnur Sagbas

Abstract:

Artificial joint replacements such as total knee and total hip prosthesis have been applied to the patients who affected by osteoarthritis. Although different material combinations are used for these joints, biopolymers are most commonly preferred materials especially for acetabular cup and tibial component of hip and knee joints respectively. The main limitation that shortens the service life of these prostheses is wear. Wear is complicated phenomena and it must be considered with friction and lubrication. In this study, micro wave (MW) induced argon+oxygen plasma surface modification were applied on ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) and vitamin E blended UHMWPE (VE-UHMWPE) biopolymer surfaces to improve surface wettability and wear resistance of the surfaces. Contact angel measurement method was used for determination of wettability. Ball-on-disc wear test was applied under 25% bovine serum lubrication conditions. The results show that surface wettability and wear resistance of both material samples were increased by plasma surface modification.

Keywords: Artificial joints, plasma surface modification, UHMWPE, vitamin E, wear.

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10 Forecast Based on an Empirical Probability Function with an Adjusted Error Using Propagation of Error

Authors: Oscar Javier Herrera, Manuel Ángel Camacho

Abstract:

This paper addresses a cutting edge method of business demand forecasting, based on an empirical probability function when the historical behavior of the data is random. Additionally, it presents error determination based on the numerical method technique ‘propagation of errors.’ The methodology was conducted characterization and process diagnostics demand planning as part of the production management, then new ways to predict its value through techniques of probability and to calculate their mistake investigated, it was tools used numerical methods. All this based on the behavior of the data. This analysis was determined considering the specific business circumstances of a company in the sector of communications, located in the city of Bogota, Colombia. In conclusion, using this application it was possible to obtain the adequate stock of the products required by the company to provide its services, helping the company reduce its service time, increase the client satisfaction rate, reduce stock which has not been in rotation for a long time, code its inventory, and plan reorder points for the replenishment of stock.

Keywords: Demand Forecasting, Empirical Distribution, Propagation of Error.

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9 An Exploratory Study of the Student’s Learning Experience by Applying Different Tools for e-Learning and e-Teaching

Authors: Angel Daniel Muñoz Guzmán

Abstract:

E-learning is becoming more and more common every day. For online, hybrid or traditional face-to-face programs, there are some e-teaching platforms like Google classroom, Blackboard, Moodle and Canvas, and there are platforms for full e-learning like Coursera, edX or Udemy. These tools are changing the way students acquire knowledge at schools; however, in today’s changing world that is not enough. As students’ needs and skills change and become more complex, new tools will need to be added to keep them engaged and potentialize their learning. This is especially important in the current global situation that is changing everything: the Covid-19 pandemic. Due to Covid-19, education had to make an unexpected switch from face-to-face courses to digital courses. In this study, the students’ learning experience is analyzed by applying different e-tools and following the Tec21 Model and a flexible and digital model, both developed by the Tecnologico de Monterrey University. The evaluation of the students’ learning experience has been made by the quantitative PrEmo method of emotions. Findings suggest that the quantity of e-tools used during a course does not affect the students’ learning experience as much as how a teacher links every available tool and makes them work as one in order to keep the student engaged and motivated.

Keywords: Student, experience, e-learning, e-teaching, e-tools, technology, education.

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8 A Stochastic Diffusion Process Based on the Two-Parameters Weibull Density Function

Authors: Meriem Bahij, Ahmed Nafidi, Boujemâa Achchab, Sílvio M. A. Gama, José A. O. Matos

Abstract:

Stochastic modeling concerns the use of probability to model real-world situations in which uncertainty is present. Therefore, the purpose of stochastic modeling is to estimate the probability of outcomes within a forecast, i.e. to be able to predict what conditions or decisions might happen under different situations. In the present study, we present a model of a stochastic diffusion process based on the bi-Weibull distribution function (its trend is proportional to the bi-Weibull probability density function). In general, the Weibull distribution has the ability to assume the characteristics of many different types of distributions. This has made it very popular among engineers and quality practitioners, who have considered it the most commonly used distribution for studying problems such as modeling reliability data, accelerated life testing, and maintainability modeling and analysis. In this work, we start by obtaining the probabilistic characteristics of this model, as the explicit expression of the process, its trends, and its distribution by transforming the diffusion process in a Wiener process as shown in the Ricciaardi theorem. Then, we develop the statistical inference of this model using the maximum likelihood methodology. Finally, we analyse with simulated data the computational problems associated with the parameters, an issue of great importance in its application to real data with the use of the convergence analysis methods. Overall, the use of a stochastic model reflects only a pragmatic decision on the part of the modeler. According to the data that is available and the universe of models known to the modeler, this model represents the best currently available description of the phenomenon under consideration.

Keywords: Diffusion process, discrete sampling, likelihood estimation method, simulation, stochastic diffusion equation, trends functions, bi-parameters Weibull density function.

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7 A Ring-Shaped Tri-Axial Force Sensor for Minimally Invasive Surgery

Authors: Beibei Han, Yong-Jin Yoon, Muhammad Hamidullah, Angel Tsu-Hui Lin, Woo-Tae Park

Abstract:

This paper presents the design of a ring-shaped tri-axial fore sensor that can be incorporated into the tip of a guidewire for use in minimally invasive surgery (MIS). The designed sensor comprises a ring-shaped structure located at the center of four cantilever beams. The ringdesign allows surgical tools to be easily passed through which largely simplified the integration process. Silicon nanowires (SiNWs) are used aspiezoresistive sensing elementsembeddedon the four cantilevers of the sensor to detect the resistance change caused by the applied load.An integration scheme with new designed guidewire tip structure having two coils at the distal end is presented. Finite element modeling has been employed in the sensor design to find the maximum stress location in order to put the SiNWs at the high stress regions to obtain maximum output. A maximum applicable force of 5 mN is found from modeling. The interaction mechanism between the designed sensor and a steel wire has been modeled by FEM. A linear relationship between the applied load on the steel wire and the induced stress on the SiNWs were observed.

Keywords: Triaxial MEMS force sensor, Ring shape, Silicon Nanowire, Minimally invasive surgery.

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6 Intellectual Capital Disclosure: Profiles of Spanish Public Universities

Authors: Yolanda Ramírez, Ángel Tejada, Agustín Baidez

Abstract:

In the higher education setting, there is a current trend in society toward greater openness and transparency. The economic, social and political changes that have occurred in recent years in public sector universities (particularly the New Public Management, the Bologna Process and the emergence of the “third mission”) call for a wider disclosure of value created by universities to support fundraising activities, to ensure accountability in the use of public funds and the outcomes of research and teaching, as well as close relationships with industries and territories. The paper has two purposes: 1) to explore the intellectual capital (IC) disclosure in Spanish universities through their websites, and 2) to identify university profiles. This study applies a content analysis to analyze the institutional websites of Spanish public universities and a cluster analysis. The analysis reveals that Spanish universities’ website content usually relates to human capital, while structural and relational capitals are less widely disclosed. Our research identifies three behavioral profiles of Spanish universities with regard to the online disclosure of IC (universities more proactive, universities less proactive and universities adopt a middle position in this regard. The results can serve as encouragement to university managers to enhance online IC disclosure to meet the information needs of university stakeholders.

Keywords: Universities, intellectual capital, disclosure, Internet.

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5 A Maximum Power Point Tracker for PV Panels Using SEPIC Converter

Authors: S. Ganesh, J. Janani, G. Besliya Angel

Abstract:

Photovoltaic (PV) energy is one of the most important renewable energy sources. Maximum Power Point Tracking (MPPT) techniques should be used in photovoltaic systems to maximize the PV panel output power by tracking continuously the maximum power point which depends on panel’s temperature and on irradiance conditions. Incremental conductance control method has been used as MPPT algorithm. The methodology is based on connecting a pulse width modulated dc/dc SEPIC converter, which is controlled by a microprocessor based unit. The SEPIC converter is one of the buck-boost converters which maintain the output voltage as constant irrespective of the solar isolation level. By adjusting the switching frequency of the converter the maximum power point has been achieved. The main difference between the method used in the proposed MPPT systems and other technique used in the past is that PV array output power is used to directly control the dc/dc converter thus reducing the complexity of the system. The resulting system has high efficiency, low cost and can be easily modified. The tracking capability has been verified experimentally with a 10 W solar panel under a controlled experimental setup. The SEPIC converter and their control strategies has been analyzed and simulated using Simulink/Matlab software.

Keywords: Maximum Power Point Tracking, Microprocessor, PV Module, SEPIC Converter.

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4 Assessing Innovation Activity in Mexico and South Korea: An Econometric Approach

Authors: Mario Gómez, Won Ho Kim, Ángel Licona, José Carlos Rodríguez

Abstract:

This article analyzes innovation activity in Mexico and South Korea. It develops an econometric model to test for structural breaks in the number of patent applications filed by residents and nonresidents in these countries during the period of 1965 to 2012. These changes may suggest that firms’ innovative capabilities have changed because of implementing different science, technology and innovation (STI) policies in Mexico and South Korea. Two important features characterize this research from others already developed by these authors. First, the theoretical research framework in this research is the debate between the assimilation view of growth and the accumulation view of growth. This characteristic suggests that trade liberalization should be accompanied by an adequate STI policy to boost competitiveness among indigenous firms. Second, the analysis in this research stresses the importance of key actors (e.g. governments) to successfully develop innovation capabilities among indigenous firms. Therefore, the question conducting this research is how STI policies in Mexico and South Korea contributed to develop firms’ innovation capabilities in these countries during last decades? The results from this research suggests that STI policy in South Korea was more suitable to boost innovation firms to compete in markets. Data to develop this research was released by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).

Keywords: Econometric methods, innovation, Mexico, South Korea, STI Policy.

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3 Integrating Microcontroller-Based Projects in a Human-Computer Interaction Course

Authors: Miguel Angel Garcia-Ruiz, Pedro Cesar Santana-Mancilla, Laura Sanely Gaytan-Lugo

Abstract:

This paper describes the design and application of a short in-class project conducted in Algoma University’s Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) course taught at the Bachelor of Computer Science. The project was based on the Maker Movement (people using and reusing electronic components and everyday materials to tinker with technology and make interactive applications), where students applied low-cost and easy-to-use electronic components, the Arduino Uno microcontroller board, software tools, and everyday objects. Students collaborated in small teams by completing hands-on activities with them, making an interactive walking cane for blind people. At the end of the course, students filled out a Technology Acceptance Model version 2 (TAM2) questionnaire where they evaluated microcontroller boards’ applications in HCI classes. We also asked them about applying the Maker Movement in HCI classes. Results showed overall students’ positive opinions and response about using microcontroller boards in HCI classes. We strongly suggest that every HCI course should include practical activities related to tinkering with technology such as applying microcontroller boards, where students actively and constructively participate in teams for achieving learning objectives.

Keywords: Maker movement, microcontrollers, learning, projects, course, technology acceptance.

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2 Microwave-Assisted Alginate Extraction from Portuguese Saccorhiza polyschides – Influence of Acid Pretreatment

Authors: Mário Silva, Filipa Gomes, Filipa Oliveira, Simone Morais, Cristina Delerue-Matos

Abstract:

Brown seaweeds are abundant in Portuguese coastline and represent an almost unexploited marine economic resource. One of the most common species, easily available for harvesting in the northwest coast, is Saccorhiza polyschides grows in the lowest shore and costal rocky reefs. It is almost exclusively used by local farmers as natural fertilizer, but contains a substantial amount of valuable compounds, particularly alginates, natural biopolymers of high interest for many industrial applications. Alginates are natural polysaccharides present in cell walls of brown seaweed, highly biocompatible, with particular properties that make them of high interest for the food, biotechnology, cosmetics and pharmaceutical industries. Conventional extraction processes are based on thermal treatment. They are lengthy and consume high amounts of energy and solvents. In recent years, microwave-assisted extraction (MAE) has shown enormous potential to overcome major drawbacks that outcome from conventional plant material extraction (thermal and/or solvent based) techniques, being also successfully applied to the extraction of agar, fucoidans and alginates. In the present study, acid pretreatment of brown seaweed Saccorhiza polyschides for subsequent microwave-assisted extraction (MAE) of alginate was optimized. Seaweeds were collected in Northwest Portuguese coastal waters of the Atlantic Ocean between May and August, 2014. Experimental design was used to assess the effect of temperature and acid pretreatment time in alginate extraction. Response surface methodology allowed the determination of the optimum MAE conditions: 40 mL of HCl 0.1 M per g of dried seaweed with constant stirring at 20ºC during 14h. Optimal acid pretreatment conditions have enhanced significantly MAE of alginates from Saccorhiza polyschides, thus contributing for the development of a viable, more environmental friendly alternative to conventional processes.

Keywords: Acid pretreatment, Alginate, Brown seaweed, Microwave-assisted extraction, Response surface methodology.

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