Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 18

Search results for: Arturo Aquino

18 A Similarity Function for Global Quality Assessment of Retinal Vessel Segmentations

Authors: Arturo Aquino, Manuel Emilio Gegundez, Jose Manuel Bravo, Diego Marin

Abstract:

Retinal vascularity assessment plays an important role in diagnosis of ophthalmic pathologies. The employment of digital images for this purpose makes possible a computerized approach and has motivated development of many methods for automated vascular tree segmentation. Metrics based on contingency tables for binary classification have been widely used for evaluating performance of these algorithms and, concretely, the accuracy has been mostly used as measure of global performance in this topic. However, this metric shows very poor matching with human perception as well as other notable deficiencies. Here, a new similarity function for measuring quality of retinal vessel segmentations is proposed. This similarity function is based on characterizing the vascular tree as a connected structure with a measurable area and length. Tests made indicate that this new approach shows better behaviour than the current one does. Generalizing, this concept of measuring descriptive properties may be used for designing functions for measuring more successfully segmentation quality of other complex structures.

Keywords: Retinal vessel segmentation, quality assessment, performanceevaluation, similarity function.

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17 Automated Optic Disc Detection in Retinal Images of Patients with Diabetic Retinopathy and Risk of Macular Edema

Authors: Arturo Aquino, Manuel Emilio Gegundez, Diego Marin

Abstract:

In this paper, a new automated methodology to detect the optic disc (OD) automatically in retinal images from patients with risk of being affected by Diabetic Retinopathy (DR) and Macular Edema (ME) is presented. The detection procedure comprises two independent methodologies. On one hand, a location methodology obtains a pixel that belongs to the OD using image contrast analysis and structure filtering techniques and, on the other hand, a boundary segmentation methodology estimates a circular approximation of the OD boundary by applying mathematical morphology, edge detection techniques and the Circular Hough Transform. The methodologies were tested on a set of 1200 images composed of 229 retinographies from patients affected by DR with risk of ME, 431 with DR and no risk of ME and 540 images of healthy retinas. The location methodology obtained 98.83% success rate, whereas the OD boundary segmentation methodology obtained good circular OD boundary approximation in 94.58% of cases. The average computational time measured over the total set was 1.67 seconds for OD location and 5.78 seconds for OD boundary segmentation.

Keywords: Diabetic retinopathy, macular edema, optic disc, automated detection, automated segmentation.

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16 Study of Cahn-Hilliard Equation to Simulate Phase Separation

Authors: Nara Guimarães, Marcelo Aquino Martorano, Douglas Gouvêa

Abstract:

An investigation into Cahn-Hilliard equation was carried out through numerical simulation to identify a possible phase separation for one and two dimensional domains. It was observed that this equation can reproduce important mass fluxes necessary for phase separation within the miscibility gap and for coalescence of particles.

Keywords: Cahn-Hilliard equation, miscibility gap, phase separation.

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15 Methodologies for Management of Sustainable Tourism: A Case Study in Jalapão/Tocantins/Brazil

Authors: Mary L. G. S. Senna, Veruska C. Dutra, Afonso R. Aquino

Abstract:

The study is in application and analysis of two tourism management tools that can contribute to making public managers decision: the Barometer of Tourism Sustainability (BTS) and the Ecological Footprint (EF). The results have shown that BTS allows you to have an integrated view of the tourism system, awakening to the need for planning of appropriate actions so that it can achieve the positive scale proposed (potentially sustainable). Already the methodology of ecological tourism footprint is an important tool to measure potential impacts generated by tourism to tourist reality.

Keywords: Barometer of tourism sustainability, ecological footprint of tourism, Jalapão/Brazil, sustainable tourism.

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14 A Numerical Study of Force-Based Boundary Conditions in Multiparticle Collision Dynamics

Authors: Arturo Ayala-Hernandez, Humberto H´ıjar

Abstract:

We propose a new alternative method for imposing fluid-solid boundary conditions in simulations of Multiparticle Collision Dynamics. Our method is based on the introduction of an explicit potential force acting between the fluid particles and a surface representing a solid boundary. We show that our method can be used in simulations of plane Poiseuille flows. Important quantities characterizing the flow and the fluid-solid interaction like the slip coefficient at the solid boundary and the effective viscosity of the fluid, are measured in terms of the set of independent parameters defining the numerical implementation. We find that our method can be used to simulate the correct hydrodynamic flow within a wide range of values of these parameters.

Keywords: Multiparticle Collision Dynamics, Fluid-Solid Boundary Conditions, Molecular Dynamics.

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13 Video-Based Tracking of Laparoscopic Instruments Using an Orthogonal Webcams System

Authors: Fernando Pérez, Humberto Sossa, Rigoberto Martínez, Daniel Lorias, Arturo Minor

Abstract:

This paper presents a system for tracking the movement of laparoscopic instruments which is based on an orthogonal system of webcams and video image processing. The movements are captured with two webcams placed orthogonally inside of the physical trainer. On the image, the instruments were detected by using color markers placed on the distal tip of each instrument. The 3D position of the tip of the instrument within the work space was obtained by linear triangulation method. Preliminary results showed linearity and repeatability in the motion tracking with a resolution of 0.616 mm in each axis; the accuracy of the system showed a 3D instrument positioning error of 1.009 ± 0.101 mm. This tool is a portable and low-cost alternative to traditional tracking devices and a trustable method for the objective evaluation of the surgeon’s surgical skills.

Keywords: Laparoscopic Surgery, Orthogonal Vision, Tracking Instruments, Triangulation.

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12 The Importance of Conserving Pre-Historical, Historical and Cultural Heritage and Its Tourist Exploitation

Authors: Diego Renan G. Tudela, Veruska C. Dutra, Mary Lucia Gomes Silveira de Senna, Afonso R. Aquino

Abstract:

Tourism in the present is the largest industry in the world, being an important global activity that has grown a lot in recent times. In this context, the activity of cultural tourism is growing, being seen as an important source of knowledge and information enjoyed by visitors. This article aims to discuss the cultural tourism, archaeological records and indigenous communities and the importance of preserving these invaluable sources of information, focusing on the records of the first peoples inhabiting the South American and North American lands. The study was based on discussions, theoretical studies, bibliographical research. Archaeological records are an important source of knowledge and information. Indigenous ethnic tourism represents a rescue of the authenticity of indigenous traditional cultures and their relation to the natural habitat. Cultural and indigenous tourism activity requires long-term planning to make it a sustainable activity.

Keywords: Tourism, culture, preservation, discussions.

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11 Monitoring of Key Indicators of Sustainable Tourism in the Jalapão State Park/Tocantins: A Case Study of Environmental Indicators

Authors: Veruska C. Dutra, Afonso R. Aquino

Abstract:

Since the 1980s, global tourism activity has consolidated worldwide to become an important economic contributor, and consequently, the sociocultural and environmental impacts are starting to become evidenced. This raises the need of discussing about actions for sustainable tourism that should be linked not only to the economy, but also to the environment and social aspects. The work that is going to be presented is part of a doctoral research project in Sciences undertaken at the Sao Paulo University, Brazil. It aims to analyze whether the monitoring of the tourism sector with a focus on sustainability is applicable or not, through those indicators, put in a case study in the Jalapão State Park (JSP) conservation unit, in the state of Tocantins, Brazil. This is a study of an interdisciplinary nature that had the deductive method as its guide. We concluded that the key points of the sustainable tourism, when analyzed with the focal point in environmental indicators, are an important evaluation and quantification tool of that activity in the study locus. It displayed itself as an adequate tool for monitoring, thus decoding, the main environmental impacts that occur in tourism regions and their intensity, which is made possible through analysis, and has the objective to trace ways to prevent and correct the presented impacts.

Keywords: Economic indicators, tourism, sustainability, Jalapão.

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10 Sustainable Perspectives and Local Development Potential through Tourism

Authors: Pedro H. S. Messetti, Mary L. G. S. Senna, Afonso R. Aquino

Abstract:

Sustainability is a very important and heavily discussed subject, expanding through tourism as well. The study proposition was to collect data and present it to the competent bodies so they can mold their public policies to improve the conditions of the site. It was hypothesized that the lack of data is currently affecting the quality of life and the sustainable development of the site and the tourism. The research was held in Mateiros, a city in the state of Tocantins (TO)/Brasil near Palmas, its capital city. Because of the concentration of tourists during the high season and several tourist attractions being around, the research took place in Mateiros. The methodological procedure had a script of theoretical construction and investigation of the deductive scientific method parameters through a case study in the Jalapão/TO/Brazil region, using it as a tool for a questionnaire given to the competent bodies in an interview system with the UN sustainability indexes as a base. In the three sustainable development scope: environmental, social and economic, the results indicated that the data presented by the interviewed were scarce or nonexistent. It shows that more research is necessary, providing the tools for the ones responsible to propose action plans to improve the site, strengthening the tourism and making it even more sustainable.

Keywords: Jalapão/Brazil State Park, sustainable tourism, UN sustainability indexes.

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9 Transgenerational Entrepreneurship in Chinese Family Businesses: Proposal for a Model of Work-Life Synergy

Authors: Jenny Oliveros Lao Phillips, Arturo E. Osorio, José Alves

Abstract:

Family business are the dominant form of business in the world, and Chinese family business (CFB) is a unique type of family business that relies on collective action to survive. This paper argues that in CFBs, entrepreneurial actions are transgenerational collective endeavors, and successors are groomed as stewards of the family legacy. Work-life relationship in CFBs is about synergy and not balance because the family identity is the business identity, and vice-versa. Using five in-depth case studies, this research introduces an alternative understanding of CFBs and proposes a model of work-life synergy in transgenerational entrepreneurship based on discussion of five theory-based propositions. This model explains that through emphasizing on the business family’s shared value and entrepreneurial legacy, elements of trust, shared identity and stewardship of family members are enhanced which leads to collective action and goal of the business family, resulting in transgenerational entrepreneurship. Limitations and future research are presented.

Keywords: Chinese family business, family legacy, stewardship, transgenerational entrepreneurship, work-life synergy.

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8 Quality of Life of the Beneficiaries of the Government’s Bolsa Família Program: A Case Study in Mateiros/TO/Brazil

Authors: Mary L. G. S. Senna, Afonso R. Aquino, Veruska C. Dutra, Carlos H. C. Tolentino

Abstract:

The quality of life index, despite elucidating many discussions, the conceptual subjectivity of the term does not show precision, and consequently, many researchers seek to develop methods aiming to measure this concept, bringing it to a more concrete approach. In this study, the quality of life index method was used to analyze the population of Mateiros, Tocantins, Brazil for quality of life. After data collection, it was compared the quality of life index between the population and the group of beneficiaries of the Brazilian government assistance program Bolsa Família (Family Allowance). Some of the people interviewed receive financial aid from the federal government program Bolsa Família (22%). Comparisons were made among the final score of the quality of life index of the Mateiros population and the following factors: Gender, age, education, those working or not with tourism and those who receive or do not receive the Bolsa Família. It was observed that only the factor, Bolsa Família (p-score 0.0138), shows an association with quality of life improvement, noticing that those who have financial aid had a higher quality of life improvement than the rest of the population. It was concluded that, government assistance has shown a decisive element on the enhancement of Mateiros population quality of life, indicating that similar actions should be maintained.

Keywords: Quality of life index, government aid to families, sustainable tourism, Bolsa Familia.

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7 The Ecological Footprint of Tourism in Jalapão/TO/Brazil

Authors: Mary L. G. S. Senna, Afonso R. Aquino

Abstract:

The development of tourism causes negative impacts on the environment. It is in this context, through the Ecological Footprint (EF) method that this study aimed to characterize the impacts of ecotourism on the community of Mateiros, Jalapão, Brazil. The EF, which consisted in its original a method to construct a land use matrix, considering some major categories of human consumption such as food, housing, transportation, consumer goods and services, and six other categories from the main land use which are divided into the topics: land use, degraded environment, gardens, fertile land, pasture and forests protected by the government. The main objective of this index is to calculate the land area required for the production and maintenance of goods and services consumed by a community. The field research was conducted throughout the year of 2014 until July 2015. After the calculations of each category, these components were added according to the presented method in order to determine the annual EF of the tourism sector in Mateiros. The results show that the EF resulting from tourism in Mateiros is 2,194.22 hectares of land required for tourism activities in the region. The EF of tourism was considered high, nevertheless, if it is added the total of hectares needed annually for tourism activities, the result found would be 2,194.22 hectares needed to absorb the CO2 emissions generated in the region directly from the tourism sector.

Keywords: Sustainable tourism, tourism ecological footprint, Jalapão/TO/Brazil.

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6 Analysis of the Influence of Reshoring on the Structural Behavior of Reinforced Concrete Beams

Authors: Keith Danila Aquino Neves, Júlia Borges dos Santos

Abstract:

There is little published research about the influence of execution methods on structural behavior. Structural analysis is typically based on a constructed building, considering the actions of all forces under which it was designed. However, during construction, execution loads do not match those designed, and in some cases the loads begin to act when the concrete has not yet reached its maximum strength. Changes to structural element support conditions may occur, resulting in unforeseen alterations to the structure’s behavior. Shoring is an example of a construction process that, if executed improperly, will directly influence the structural performance, and may result in unpredicted cracks and displacements. The NBR 14931/2004 standard, which guides the execution of reinforced concrete structures, mentions that shoring must be executed in a way that avoids unpredicted loads and that it may be removed after previous analysis of the structure’s behavior by the professional responsible for the structure’s design. Differences in structural behavior are reduced for small spans. It is important to qualify and quantify how the incorrect placement of shores can compromise a structure’s safety. The results of this research allowed a more precise acknowledgment of the relationship between spans and loads, for which the influence of execution processes can be considerable, and reinforced that civil engineering practice must be performed with the presence of a qualified professional, respecting existing standards’ guidelines.

Keywords: Structural analysis, structural behavior, reshoring, static scheme, reinforced concrete.

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5 Design, Fabrication and Performance Evaluation of Mobile Engine-Driven Pneumatic Paddy Collector

Authors: Sony P. Aquino, Helen F. Gavino, Victorino T. Taylan, Teresito G. Aguinaldo

Abstract:

A simple mobile engine-driven pneumatic paddy collector made of locally available materials using local manufacturing technology was designed, fabricated, and tested for collecting and bagging of paddy dried on concrete pavement. The pneumatic paddy collector had the following major components: radial flat bladed type centrifugal fan, power transmission system, bagging area, frame and the conveyance system. Results showed significant differences on the collecting capacity, noise level, and fuel consumption when rotational speed of the air mover shaft was varied. Other parameters such as collecting efficiency, air velocity, augmented cracked grain percentage, and germination rate were not significantly affected by varying rotational speed of the air mover shaft. The pneumatic paddy collector had a collecting efficiency of 99.33 % with a collecting capacity of 2685.00 kg/h at maximum rotational speed of centrifugal fan shaft of about 4200 rpm. The machine entailed an investment cost of P 62,829.25. The break-even weight of paddy was 510,606.75 kg/yr at a collecting cost of 0.11 P/kg of paddy. Utilizing the machine for 400 hours per year generated an income of P 23,887.73. The projected time needed to recover cost of the machine based on 2685 kg/h collecting capacity was 2.63 year.

Keywords: Mobile engine-driven pneumatic paddy collector, collecting capacity and efficiency, simple cost analysis.

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4 Exploring Dimensionality, Systematic Mutations and Number of Contacts in Simple HP ab-initio Protein Folding Using a Blackboard-based Agent Platform

Authors: Hiram I. Beltrán, Arturo Rojo-Domínguez, Máximo Eduardo Sánchez Gutiérrez, Pedro Pablo González Pérez

Abstract:

A computational platform is presented in this contribution. It has been designed as a virtual laboratory to be used for exploring optimization algorithms in biological problems. This platform is built on a blackboard-based agent architecture. As a test case, the version of the platform presented here is devoted to the study of protein folding, initially with a bead-like description of the chain and with the widely used model of hydrophobic and polar residues (HP model). Some details of the platform design are presented along with its capabilities and also are revised some explorations of the protein folding problems with different types of discrete space. It is also shown the capability of the platform to incorporate specific tools for the structural analysis of the runs in order to understand and improve the optimization process. Accordingly, the results obtained demonstrate that the ensemble of computational tools into a single platform is worthwhile by itself, since experiments developed on it can be designed to fulfill different levels of information in a self-consistent fashion. By now, it is being explored how an experiment design can be useful to create a computational agent to be included within the platform. These inclusions of designed agents –or software pieces– are useful for the better accomplishment of the tasks to be developed by the platform. Clearly, while the number of agents increases the new version of the virtual laboratory thus enhances in robustness and functionality.

Keywords: genetic algorithms, multi-agent systems, bioinformatics, optimization, protein folding, structural biology.

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3 Methodologies for Crack Initiation in Welded Joints Applied to Inspection Planning

Authors: Guang Zou, Kian Banisoleiman, Arturo González

Abstract:

Crack initiation and propagation threatens structural integrity of welded joints and normally inspections are assigned based on crack propagation models. However, the approach based on crack propagation models may not be applicable for some high-quality welded joints, because the initial flaws in them may be so small that it may take long time for the flaws to develop into a detectable size. This raises a concern regarding the inspection planning of high-quality welded joins, as there is no generally acceptable approach for modeling the whole fatigue process that includes the crack initiation period. In order to address the issue, this paper reviews treatment methods for crack initiation period and initial crack size in crack propagation models applied to inspection planning. Generally, there are four approaches, by: 1) Neglecting the crack initiation period and fitting a probabilistic distribution for initial crack size based on statistical data; 2) Extrapolating the crack propagation stage to a very small fictitious initial crack size, so that the whole fatigue process can be modeled by crack propagation models; 3) Assuming a fixed detectable initial crack size and fitting a probabilistic distribution for crack initiation time based on specimen tests; and, 4) Modeling the crack initiation and propagation stage separately using small crack growth theories and Paris law or similar models. The conclusion is that in view of trade-off between accuracy and computation efforts, calibration of a small fictitious initial crack size to S-N curves is the most efficient approach.

Keywords: Crack initiation, fatigue reliability, inspection planning, welded joints.

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2 Multi-Agent Systems Applied in the Modeling and Simulation of Biological Problems: A Case Study in Protein Folding

Authors: Pedro Pablo González Pérez, Hiram I. Beltrán, Arturo Rojo-Domínguez, Máximo EduardoSánchez Gutiérrez

Abstract:

Multi-agent system approach has proven to be an effective and appropriate abstraction level to construct whole models of a diversity of biological problems, integrating aspects which can be found both in "micro" and "macro" approaches when modeling this type of phenomena. Taking into account these considerations, this paper presents the important computational characteristics to be gathered into a novel bioinformatics framework built upon a multiagent architecture. The version of the tool presented herein allows studying and exploring complex problems belonging principally to structural biology, such as protein folding. The bioinformatics framework is used as a virtual laboratory to explore a minimalist model of protein folding as a test case. In order to show the laboratory concept of the platform as well as its flexibility and adaptability, we studied the folding of two particular sequences, one of 45-mer and another of 64-mer, both described by an HP model (only hydrophobic and polar residues) and coarse grained 2D-square lattice. According to the discussion section of this piece of work, these two sequences were chosen as breaking points towards the platform, in order to determine the tools to be created or improved in such a way to overcome the needs of a particular computation and analysis of a given tough sequence. The backwards philosophy herein is that the continuous studying of sequences provides itself important points to be added into the platform, to any time improve its efficiency, as is demonstrated herein.

Keywords: multi-agent systems, blackboard-based agent architecture, bioinformatics framework, virtual laboratory, protein folding.

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1 A Proposal of a Method to Measure the Satisfaction Indicator of the Local Community Concerning Tourism: A Case Study of Jalapão State Park, Tocantins

Authors: Veruska C. Dutra, Mary L. G. S. Senna, Afonso R. Aquino

Abstract:

Tourists bring many benefits to a local community, encouraging it to be involved in that activity; however, it may also have detrimental effects like garbage, noise, violence, external culture and the damaging of the natural environment among others, which may promote community dissatisfaction. The contact between the tourist and the local community is a concern, especially when the community is located near protected areas. In this case, the community must know the tourist destination well, so it can collaborate in the tourism development without harming the environment. In this context, the present article aims to demonstrate the results of a research study conducted as part of a doctorate program in Sciences from the University of Sao Paulo, Brazil. It had as an objective to elaborate a methodology proposal to measure the local community satisfaction indicator, with applicability on a case study in the Mateiros community located in the surrounding area of the Parque Estadual do Jalapão –PEJ conservation unit in the state of Tocantins, Brazil. This is a study of an interdisciplinary nature that had the deductive method as its guide. The indicator result is going to be presented in this study. It pointed out as negative factors: there is no involvement between the local community and the tourism sector, and there is also dissatisfaction with regard to the town’s basic services. The study showed as positive the local community knowledge about the various attractions in the surrounding area and that the group recognizes the importance of the tourism for the town and life. Concerning the methodology that was used, the results showed that it can collaborate in seeking actions of improvement and involvement of the community in the planning and development of the local tourism. It comes out as an efficient analysis tool, thus enabling the perceiving of the local community point of view.

Keywords: Satisfaction indicator, tourism, community, Jalapão.

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