Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 7

Search results for: Nicole Christoff

7 Modern Spectrum Sensing Techniques for Cognitive Radio Networks: Practical Implementation and Performance Evaluation

Authors: Antoni Ivanov, Nikolay Dandanov, Nicole Christoff, Vladimir Poulkov

Abstract:

Spectrum underutilization has made cognitive radio a promising technology both for current and future telecommunications. This is due to the ability to exploit the unused spectrum in the bands dedicated to other wireless communication systems, and thus, increase their occupancy. The essential function, which allows the cognitive radio device to perceive the occupancy of the spectrum, is spectrum sensing. In this paper, the performance of modern adaptations of the four most widely used spectrum sensing techniques namely, energy detection (ED), cyclostationary feature detection (CSFD), matched filter (MF) and eigenvalues-based detection (EBD) is compared. The implementation has been accomplished through the PlutoSDR hardware platform and the GNU Radio software package in very low Signal-to-Noise Ratio (SNR) conditions. The optimal detection performance of the examined methods in a realistic implementation-oriented model is found for the common relevant parameters (number of observed samples, sensing time and required probability of false alarm).

Keywords: Cognitive radio, dynamic spectrum access, GNU Radio, spectrum sensing.

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6 Self-Esteem and Stress Level among Traumatic Brain Injured Adults with Mild, Moderate and Severe Injuries attending a Day Program Rehabilitation Facility

Authors: Nicole S. McKinney

Abstract:

The purpose of the study was to determine if, among 32 brain injured adults in community rehabilitation programs, there is a statistically significant relationship between the degree of severity of brain injury and these adults- level of self-esteem and stress. The researcher hypothesized there would be a statistically significant difference and a statistically significant relationship in self-esteem and stress levels among and TBI adults. A Pearson product moment correlational analysis was implemented and results found a statistically significant relationship between self-esteem and stress levels. Future recommendations were suggested upon completion of research.

Keywords: anxiety, community recovery center, head-trauma persons, self-concept

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5 Potential of Selected Microbial Strains to Degrade the Gasoil of Hydrocarbon Polluted Soil

Authors: Ali Zazoua, Anis Zazoua, Ahcen Taleb, Nicole Jaffrezic-Renault

Abstract:

Although oil-based drilling fluids are of paramount practical and economical interest, they represent a serious source of pollution, once released into the environment as drill cuttings. The aim of this study is to assess the capability of isolated microorganisms to degrade gasoil fuel. The commonly used physicochemical and biodegradation remediation techniques of petroleum contaminated soil were both investigated. The study revealed that natural biodegradation is favorable. Even though, the presence of heavy metals, the moisture level of (8.55%) and nutrient deficiencies put severe constrains on microorganisms- survival ranges inhibiting the biodegradation process. The selected strains were able to degrade the diesel fuel at significantly high rates (around 98%).

Keywords: Biodegradation, Gasoil, Pollution, Microbial strains, Hydrocarbon, soil pollution

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4 Hypergraph Models of Metabolism

Authors: Nicole Pearcy, Jonathan J. Crofts, Nadia Chuzhanova

Abstract:

In this paper, we employ a directed hypergraph model to investigate the extent to which environmental variability influences the set of available biochemical reactions within a living cell. Such an approach avoids the limitations of the usual complex network formalism by allowing for the multilateral relationships (i.e. connections involving more than two nodes) that naturally occur within many biological processes. More specifically, we extend the concept of network reciprocity to complex hyper-networks, thus enabling us to characterise a network in terms of the existence of mutual hyper-connections, which may be considered a proxy for metabolic network complexity. To demonstrate these ideas, we study 115 metabolic hyper-networks of bacteria, each of which can be classified into one of 6 increasingly varied habitats. In particular, we found that reciprocity increases significantly with increased environmental variability, supporting the view that organism adaptability leads to increased complexities in the resultant biochemical networks.

Keywords: Complexity, hypergraphs, reciprocity, metabolism.

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3 ME/CFS Health Outcomes: The Interaction of Mode of Illness Onset and Psychiatric Comorbidity

Authors: Mary Gloria C. Njoku, Leonard A. Jason, Nicole Porter, Molly Brown

Abstract:

The objective of this study was to examine the interaction between mode of illness onset and psychiatric comorbidity on the health outcomes of persons with ME/CFS. A total of 114 individuals with ME/CFS participated in this study. Individuals completed a battery of baseline measures including the fatigue severity scale and measures of disability. Findings indicated that those with sudden illness onset had more impaired physical health functioning. In addition, among individuals with sudden onset, those without psychiatric comorbidity had greater fatigue severity and lower overall physical health than those with psychiatric comordibity. In contrast, among individuals with gradual illness onset, those with psychiatric comorbity had higher fatigue severity than those without comorbid psychiatric disorders. The health outcomes of individuals who have ME/CFS with or without psychiatric comorbidity are impacted by the mode of illness onset and this suggest that it is important to examine these factors in future research.

Keywords: Health Outcomes, ME/CFS, Mode of Illness Onset, Psychiatric Comorbidity.

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2 Identification of Training Topics for the Improvement of the Relevant Cognitive Skills of Technical Operators in the Railway Domain

Authors: Giulio Nisoli, Jonas BrĂ¼ngger, Karin Hostettler, Nicole Stoller, Katrin Fischer

Abstract:

Technical operators in the railway domain are experts responsible for the supervisory control of the railway power grid as well as of the railway tunnels. The technical systems used to master these demanding tasks are constantly increasing in their degree of automation. It becomes therefore difficult for technical operators to maintain the control over the technical systems and the processes of their job. In particular, the operators must have the necessary experience and knowledge in dealing with a malfunction situation or unexpected event. For this reason, it is of growing importance that the skills relevant for the execution of the job are maintained and further developed beyond the basic training they receive, where they are educated in respect of technical knowledge and the work with guidelines. Training methods aimed at improving the cognitive skills needed by technical operators are still missing and must be developed. Goals of the present study were to identify which are the relevant cognitive skills of technical operators in the railway domain and to define which topics should be addressed by the training of these skills. Observational interviews were conducted in order to identify the main tasks and the organization of the work of technical operators as well as the technical systems used for the execution of their job. Based on this analysis, the most demanding tasks of technical operators could be identified and described. The cognitive skills involved in the execution of these tasks are those, which need to be trained. In order to identify and analyze these cognitive skills a cognitive task analysis (CTA) was developed. CTA specifically aims at identifying the cognitive skills that employees implement when performing their own tasks. The identified cognitive skills of technical operators were summarized and grouped in training topics. For every training topic, specific goals were defined. The goals regard the three main categories; knowledge, skills and attitude to be trained in every training topic. Based on the results of this study, it is possible to develop specific training methods to train the relevant cognitive skills of the technical operators.

Keywords: Cognitive skills, cognitive task analysis, technical operators in the railway domain, training topics.

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1 Reinforced Concrete Bridge Deck Condition Assessment Methods Using Ground Penetrating Radar and Infrared Thermography

Authors: Nicole M. Martino

Abstract:

Reinforced concrete bridge deck condition assessments primarily use visual inspection methods, where an inspector looks for and records locations of cracks, potholes, efflorescence and other signs of probable deterioration. Sounding is another technique used to diagnose the condition of a bridge deck, however this method listens for damage within the subsurface as the surface is struck with a hammer or chain. Even though extensive procedures are in place for using these inspection techniques, neither one provides the inspector with a comprehensive understanding of the internal condition of a bridge deck – the location where damage originates from.  In order to make accurate estimates of repair locations and quantities, in addition to allocating the necessary funding, a total understanding of the deck’s deteriorated state is key. The research presented in this paper collected infrared thermography and ground penetrating radar data from reinforced concrete bridge decks without an asphalt overlay. These decks were of various ages and their condition varied from brand new, to in need of replacement. The goals of this work were to first verify that these nondestructive evaluation methods could identify similar areas of healthy and damaged concrete, and then to see if combining the results of both methods would provide a higher confidence than if the condition assessment was completed using only one method. The results from each method were presented as plan view color contour plots. The results from one of the decks assessed as a part of this research, including these plan view plots, are presented in this paper. Furthermore, in order to answer the interest of transportation agencies throughout the United States, this research developed a step-by-step guide which demonstrates how to collect and assess a bridge deck using these nondestructive evaluation methods. This guide addresses setup procedures on the deck during the day of data collection, system setups and settings for different bridge decks, data post-processing for each method, and data visualization and quantification.

Keywords: Bridge deck deterioration, ground penetrating radar, infrared thermography, NDT of bridge decks.

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