Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 2495

Search results for: Profit Efficiency

2495 Profit Efficiency and Competitiveness of Commercial Banks in Malaysia

Authors: Rosita Suhaimi, Firdaus Abdullah, Chong Fen Nee, Nurhani Aba Ibrahim

Abstract:

This paper attempts to identify the significance of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) and competitiveness to the profit efficiency of commercial banks in Malaysia. The profit efficiency of commercial banks in Malaysia, the dependent variable, was estimated using the Stochastic Frontier Approach (SFA) on a sample of unbalanced panel data, covering 23 commercial banks, between 1995 to 2007. Based on the empirical results, ICT was not found to exert a significant impact on profit efficiency, whereas competitiveness, non ICT stock expenditure and ownership were significant contributors. On the other hand, the size of banks was found to have significantly reduced profit efficiency, opening up for various interpretations of the interrelated role of ICT and competition.

Keywords: Competitiveness, Profit Efficiency, Stochastic Frontier Analysis

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2494 Impact of Environmental Factors on Profit Efficiency of Rice Production: A Study in Vietnam-s Red River Delta

Authors: Long Van Hoang, Mitsuyasu Yabe

Abstract:

Environmental factors affect agriculture production productivity and efficiency resulted in changing of profit efficiency. This paper attempts to estimate the impacts of environmental factors to profitability of rice farmers in the Red River Delta of Vietnam. The dataset was extracted from 349 rice farmers using personal interviews. Both OLS and MLE trans-log profit functions were used in this study. Five production inputs and four environmental factors were included in these functions. The estimation of the stochastic profit frontier with a two-stage approach was used to measure profitability. The results showed that the profit efficiency was about 75% on the average and environmental factors change profit efficiency significantly beside farm specific characteristics. Plant disease, soil fertility, irrigation apply and water pollution were the four environmental factors cause profit loss in rice production. The result indicated that farmers should reduce household size, farm plots, apply row seeding technique and improve environmental factors to obtain high profit efficiency with special consideration is given for irrigation water quality improvement.

Keywords: Profit efficiency; Profit function; Environmental factors; OLS and MLE estimations; Rice Production; Vietnam

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2493 Profit and Nonprofit Sports Clubs: Financial and Organizational Comparison in Poland

Authors: Wojciech B. Cieśliński, Igor Perechuda

Abstract:

The paper identifies the features of Polish sports clubs in the particular organizational forms: profit and nonprofit. Identification and description of these features is carried out in terms of financial efficiency of the given organizational form. Under the terms of the efficiency the research allows you to specify the advantages of particular organizational sports club form and the following limitations. Paper considers features of sports clubs in range of Polish conditions as legal regulations. The sources of the functioning efficiency of sports clubs may lie in the organizational forms in which they operate. Each of the available forms can be considered either a for-profit or nonprofit enterprise. Depending on this classification there are different capabilities of increasing organizational and financial efficiency of a given sports club. Authors start with general classification and difference between for-profit and non-profit sport clubs. Next identifies specific financial and organizational conditions of both organizational form and then show examples of mixed activity forms and their efficiency effect.

Keywords: Financial efficiency, for-profit, non-profit, sports club.

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2492 Cultural Effects on the Performance of Non- Profit and For-Profit Microfinance Institutions

Authors: Patrick M. Stanton, William R. McCumber

Abstract:

Using a large dataset of more than 2,400 individual microfinance institutions (MFIs) from 120 countries from 1999 to 2016, this study finds that nearly half of the international MFIs operate as for-profit institutions. Formal institutions (business regulatory environment, property rights, social protection, and a developed financial sector) impact the likelihood of MFIs being for-profit across countries. Cultural differences across countries (power distance, individualism, masculinity, and indulgence) seem to be a factor in the legal status of the MFI (non-profit or for-profit). MFIs in countries with stronger formal institutions, a greater degree of power distance, and a higher degree of collectivism experience better financial and social performance.

Keywords: Hofstede cultural dimensions, international finance, microfinance institutions, non-profit.

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2491 Modeling Salam Contract for Profit and Loss Sharing

Authors: Dchieche Amina, Aboulaich Rajae

Abstract:

Profit and loss sharing suggests an equitable sharing of risks and profits between the parts involved in a financial transaction. Salam is a contract in which advance payment is made for goods to be delivered at a future date. The purpose of this work is to price a new contract for profit and loss sharing based on Salam contract, using Khiyar Al Ghabn which is an agreement of choice in case of misrepresent facts.

Keywords: Islamic finance, Shariah compliance, profit and loss sharing, derivatives, risks, hedging, salam contract.

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2490 Developing a Mathematical Model for Trade-off Analysis of New Green Products

Authors: M. R. Gholizadeh, N. Bhuiyan, M. Salari

Abstract:

In the near future, companies will be increasingly forced to shift their activities along a new road in order to decrease the harmful effects of their design, production and after-life on our environment. Products must meet environmental standards to not only prevent penalties but to consider the sustainability for future generations. However, the most important factor that companies will face is selecting a reasonable strategy to maximize their profit. Thus, companies need to have precise forecast from their profit after design stage through Trade-off analysis. This paper is an attempt to introduce a mathematical model that considers effective factors that impact the total profit when products are designed for resource and energy efficiency or recyclability. The modification is according to different strategies based on a Cost-Volume-Profit model. Here, the cost structure consists of Recycling cost, Development cost, Ramp-up cost, Production cost, and Pollution cost. Also, the model shows the effect of implementation of design for recyclable on revenue structure through revenue of used parts and revenue of recycled materials. A numerical example is used to evaluate the proposed model. Results show that fulfillment of Green Product Development not only can reduce the environmental impact of products but also it will increase profit of company in long term.

Keywords: Green Product, Design for Environment, C-V-P Model, Trade-off analysis.

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2489 Exterior Calculus: Economic Profit Dynamics

Authors: Troy L. Story

Abstract:

A mathematical model for the Dynamics of Economic Profit is constructed by proposing a characteristic differential oneform for this dynamics (analogous to the action in Hamiltonian dynamics). After processing this form with exterior calculus, a pair of characteristic differential equations is generated and solved for the rate of change of profit P as a function of revenue R (t) and cost C (t). By contracting the characteristic differential one-form with a vortex vector, the Lagrangian is obtained for the Dynamics of Economic Profit.

Keywords: Differential geometry, exterior calculus, Hamiltonian geometry, mathematical economics, economic functions, and dynamics

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2488 Cost and Profit Analysis of Markovian Queuing System with Two Priority Classes: A Computational Approach

Authors: S. S. Mishra, D. K. Yadav

Abstract:

This paper focuses on cost and profit analysis of single-server Markovian queuing system with two priority classes. In this paper, functions of total expected cost, revenue and profit of the system are constructed and subjected to optimization with respect to its service rates of lower and higher priority classes. A computing algorithm has been developed on the basis of fast converging numerical method to solve the system of non linear equations formed out of the mathematical analysis. A novel performance measure of cost and profit analysis in view of its economic interpretation for the system with priority classes is attempted to discuss in this paper. On the basis of computed tables observations are also drawn to enlighten the variational-effect of the model on the parameters involved therein.

Keywords: Cost and Profit, Computing, Expected Revenue, Priority classes

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2487 Strategic Management Methods in Non-profit Making Organization

Authors: P. Řehoř, D. Holátová, V. Doležalová

Abstract:

Paper deals with analysis of strategic management methods in non-profit making organization in the Czech Republic. Strategic management represents an aggregate of methods and approaches that can be applied for managing organizations - in this article the organizations which associate owners and keepers of nonstate forest properties. Authors use these methods of strategic management: analysis of stakeholders, SWOT analysis and questionnaire inquiries. The questionnaire was distributed electronically via e-mail. In October 2013 we obtained data from a total of 84 questionnaires. Based on the results the authors recommend the using of confrontation strategy which improves the competitiveness of non-profit making organizations.

Keywords: Strategic management, non-profit making organization, strategy analysis, SWOT analysis, strategy, competitiveness.

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2486 Development of Value Productivity in Automotive Industry

Authors: Jiří Klečka, Dagmar Čámská

Abstract:

This paper is focused on the investigation of productivity (total productivity and partial productivity). The value productivity is an indicator of level and changes in technical economic efficiency of production factors. It represents an important factor in achieving corporate objectives. This text works with the contemporary concept of value productivity that means that indicators of the productivity express the effect of economic efficiency not only of inputs consumption, but also of inputs binding efficiency. This approach is based on principles of the economic profit, respectively the economic value added (EVA). The research is done on the sample of Czech enterprises operating in the automotive industry in the regions of Liberec and the Central Bohemia. The data sample covers the time period 2006-2011 which allows the comparison of development before crisis and during crisis period. It enables to discover the companies' reaction during crises and the regional comparison allows to showing if there are significant differences between regions.

Keywords: Automotive industry, Czech Republic, economic efficiency, regional comparison, value productivity.

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2485 Effect of Calving Season on the Economic and Production Efficiency of Dairy Production Breeds

Authors: Eman. K. Ramadan, Abdelgawad. S. El-Tahawy

Abstract:

The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of calving season on the production and economic efficiency of dairy farms in Egypt. Our study was performed at dairy production farms in the Alexandria, Behera, and Kafr El-Sheikh provinces of Egypt from summer 2010 to winter 2013. The randomly selected dairy farms had herds consisting of Baladi, Holstein-Friesian, or cross-bred (Baladi × Holstein-Friesian) cows. The data were collected from production records and responses to a structured questionnaire. The average total return differed significantly (P < 0.05) between the different cattle breeds and calving seasons. The average total return was highest for the Holstein- Friesian cows that calved in the winter (29106.42 EGP/cow/year), and it was lowest for Baladi cows that calved in the summer (12489.79 EGP/cow/year). Differences in total returns between the cows that calved in the winter or summer or between the foreign and native breeds, as well as variations in calf prices, might have contributed to the differences in milk yield. The average net profit per cow differed significantly (P < 0.05) between the cattle breeds and calving seasons. The average net profit values for the Baladi cows that calved in the winter or summer were 2413 and 2994.96 EGP/cow/year, respectively, and those for the Holstein- Friesian cows were 10744.17 and 7860.56 EGP/cow/year, respectively, whereas those for the cross-bred cows were 10174.86 and 7571.33 EGP/cow/year, respectively. The variations in net profit might have resulted from variation in the availability or price of feed materials, milk prices, or sales volumes. Our results show that the breed and calving season of dairy cows significantly affected the economic efficiency of dairy farms in Egypt. The cows that calved in the winter produced more milk than those that calved in the summer, which may have been the result of seasonal influences, such as temperature, humidity, management practices, and the type of feed or green fodder available.

Keywords:

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2484 Shariah Views on the Components of Profit Rate in Al-Murabahah Asset Financing in Malaysian Islamic Bank

Authors: M. Pisol B Mat Isa, Asmak Ab Rahman, Hezlina Bt M Hashim, Abd Mutalib B Embong

Abstract:

Al-Murabahah is an Islamic financing facility used in asset financing, the profit rate of the contract is determined by components which are also being used in the conventional banking. Such are cost of fund, overhead cost, risk premium cost and bank-s profit margin. At the same time, the profit rate determined by Islamic banking system also refers to Inter-Bank Offered Rate (LIBOR) in London as a benchmark. This practice has risen arguments among Muslim scholars in term of its validity of the contract; whether the contract maintains the Shariah compliance or not. This paper aims to explore the view of Shariah towards the above components practiced by Islamic Banking in determining the profit rate of al-murabahah asset financing in Malaysia. This is a comparative research which applied the views of Muslim scholars from all major mazahibs in Islamic jurisprudence and examined the practices by Islamic banks in Malaysia for the above components. The study found that the shariah accepts all the components with conditions. The cost of fund is accepted as a portion of al-mudarabah-s profit, the overhead cost is accepted as a cost of product, risk premium cost consist of business risk and mitigation risk are accepted through the concept of alta-awun and bank-s profit margin is accepted as a right of bank after venturing in risky investment.

Keywords: Islamic banking, Islamic finance, al-murabahah and asset financing

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2483 Preemptive Possibilistic Linear Programming:Application to Aggregate Production Planning

Authors: Phruksaphanrat B.

Abstract:

This research proposes a Preemptive Possibilistic Linear Programming (PPLP) approach for solving multiobjective Aggregate Production Planning (APP) problem with interval demand and imprecise unit price and related operating costs. The proposed approach attempts to maximize profit and minimize changes of workforce. It transforms the total profit objective that has imprecise information to three crisp objective functions, which are maximizing the most possible value of profit, minimizing the risk of obtaining the lower profit and maximizing the opportunity of obtaining the higher profit. The change of workforce level objective is also converted. Then, the problem is solved according to objective priorities. It is easier than simultaneously solve the multiobjective problem as performed in existing approach. Possible range of interval demand is also used to increase flexibility of obtaining the better production plan. A practical application of an electronic company is illustrated to show the effectiveness of the proposed model.

Keywords: Aggregate production planning, Fuzzy sets theory, Possibilistic linear programming, Preemptive priority

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2482 The Profitability Management Mechanism of Leather Industry-Based on the Activity-Based Benefit Approach

Authors: Mei-Fang Wu, Shu-Li Wang, Tsung-Yueh Lu, Feng-Tsung Cheng

Abstract:

Strengthening core competitiveness is the main goal of enterprises in a fierce competitive environment. Accurate cost information is a great help for managers in dealing with operation strategies. This paper establishes a profitability management mechanism that applies the Activity-Based Benefit approach (ABBA) to solve the profitability for each customer from the market. ABBA provides financial and non-financial information for the operation, but also indicates what resources have expired in the operational process. The customer profit management model shows the level of profitability of each customer for the company. The empirical data were gathered from a case company operating in the leather industry in Taiwan. The research findings indicate that 30% of customers create little profit for the company as a result of asking for over 5% of sales discounts. Those customers ask for sales discount because of color differences of leather products. This paper provides a customer’s profitability evaluation mechanism to help enterprises to greatly improve operating effectiveness and promote operational activity efficiency and overall operation profitability.

Keywords: Activity-based benefit approach, customer profit analysis, leather industry, profitability management mechanism.

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2481 Comprehensive Assessment of Energy Efficiency within the Production Process

Authors: S. Kreitlein, N. Eder, A. Syed-Khaja, J. Franke

Abstract:

The importance of energy efficiency within the production processes increases steadily. For a comprehensive assessment of energy efficiency within the production process, unfortunately no tools exist or have been developed yet. Therefore the Institute for Factory Automation and Production Systems at the Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nuremberg has developed two methods with the goal of achieving transparency and a quantitative assessment of energy efficiency namely EEV (Energy Efficiency Value) and EPE (Energetic Process Efficiency). This paper describes the basics and state-of-the-art as well as the developed approaches.

Keywords: Energy efficiency, energy efficiency value, energetic process efficiency, production.

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2480 Providing a Practical Model to Reduce Maintenance Costs: A Case Study in GeG Company

Authors: Iman Atighi, Jalal Soleimannejad, Reza Pourjafarabadi, Saeid Moradpour

Abstract:

In the past, we could increase profit by increasing product prices. But in the new decade, a competitive market does not let us to increase profit with increased prices. Therefore, the only way to increase profit will be to reduce costs. A significant percentage of production costs are the maintenance costs, and analysis of these costs could achieve more profit. Most maintenance strategies such as RCM (Reliability-Center-Maintenance), TPM (Total Productivity Maintenance), PM (Preventive Maintenance) and etc., are trying to reduce maintenance costs. In this paper, decreasing the maintenance costs of Concentration Plant of Golgohar Iron Ore Mining & Industrial Company (GeG) was examined by using of MTBF (Mean Time Between Failures) and MTTR (Mean Time To Repair) analyses. These analyses showed that instead of buying new machines and increasing costs in order to promote capacity, the improving of MTBF and MTTR indexes would solve capacity problems in the best way and decrease costs.

Keywords: GeG Company, maintainability, maintenance costs, reliability-center-maintenance.

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2479 Use of Linear Programming for Optimal Production in a Production Line in Saudi Food Co.

Authors: Qasim M. Kriri

Abstract:

Few Saudi Arabia production companies face financial profit issues until this moment. This work presents a linear integer programming model that solves a production problem of a Saudi Food Company in Saudi Arabia. An optimal solution to the above-mentioned problem is a Linear Programming solution. In this regard, the main purpose of this project is to maximize profit. Linear Programming Technique has been used to derive the maximum profit from production of natural juice at Saudi Food Co. The operations of production of the company were formulated and optimal results are found out by using Lindo Software that employed Sensitivity Analysis and Parametric linear programming in order develop Linear Programming. In addition, the parameter values are increased, then the values of the objective function will be increased.

Keywords: Parameter linear programming, objective function, sensitivity analysis, optimize profit.

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2478 Providing a Practical Model to Reduce Maintenance Costs: A Case Study in Golgohar Company

Authors: Iman Atighi, Jalal Soleimannejad, Ahmad Akbarinasab, Saeid Moradpour

Abstract:

In the past, we could increase profit by increasing product prices. But in the new decade, a competitive market does not let us to increase profit with increase prices. Therefore, the only way to increase profit will be reduce costs. A significant percentage of production costs are the maintenance costs, and analysis of these costs could achieve more profit. Most maintenance strategies such as RCM (Reliability-Center-Maintenance), TPM (Total Productivity Maintenance), PM (Preventive Maintenance) etc., are trying to reduce maintenance costs. In this paper, decreasing the maintenance costs of Concentration Plant of Golgohar Company (GEG) was examined by using of MTBF (Mean Time between Failures) and MTTR (Mean Time to Repair) analyses. These analyses showed that instead of buying new machines and increasing costs in order to promote capacity, the improving of MTBF and MTTR indexes would solve capacity problems in the best way and decrease costs.

Keywords: Golgohar Iron Ore Mining & Industrial Company, maintainability, maintenance costs, reliability-center-maintenance.

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2477 Evaluating Efficiency of Nina Distribution Company Using Window Data Envelopment Analysis and Malmquist Index

Authors: Hossein Taherian Far, Ali Bazaee

Abstract:

Achieving continuous sustained economic growth and following economic development can be the target for all countries which are looking for it. In this regard, distribution industry plays an important role in growth and development of any nation. So, estimating the efficiency and productivity of the so called industry and identifying factors influencing it, is very necessary. The objective of the present study is to measure the efficiency and productivity of seven branches of Nina Distribution Company using window data envelopment analysis and Malmquist productivity index from spring 2013 to summer 2015. In this study, using criteria of fixed assets, payroll personnel, operating costs and duration of collection of receivables were selected as inputs and people and net sales, gross profit and percentage of coverage to customers were selected as outputs. Then, the process of performance window data envelopment analysis was driven and process efficiency has been measured using Malmquist index. The results indicate that the average technical efficiency of window Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) model and fluctuating trend is sustainable. But the average management efficiency in window DEA model is related with negative growth (decline) of about 13%. The mean scale efficiency in all windows, except in the second one which is faced with 8%, shows growth of 18% compared to the first window. On the other hand, the mean change in total factor productivity in all branches of the industry shows average negative growth (decrease) of 12% which are the result of a negative change in technology.

Keywords: Nina Distribution Company branches, window data envelopment analysis, Malmquist productivity index.

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2476 Correlation of the Rate of Imperfect Competition and Profit in Banking Markets

Authors: Jan Cernohorsky

Abstract:

This article aims to assess the evolution of imperfect competition in selected banking markets, in particular in the banking markets of Slovakia, Poland, Hungary, Slovenia and Croatia. Another objective is to assess the evolution of the relationship of imperfect competition and profit development in the banking markets. The article first provides an overview of literature on the topic. It then measures the degree of imperfect competition in individual markets using the Herfindahl-Hirschman Index. The commonly used indicator of total assets was chosen as an indicator. Based on this measurement, the individual banking sectors are categorized into theoretical definitions of the various types of imperfect competition - namely all surveyed banking sectors falling within the theoretical definition of monopolistic competition. Subsequently, using correlation analysis, i.e., the Pearson correlation coefficient, or the Spearman correlation coefficient, the connection between the evolution of imperfect competition and the development of the gross profit on selected banking markets was surveyed. It was found that with the exception of the banking market in Slovenia, where there is a positive correlation; there is no correlation between the evolution of imperfect competition and profit development in the selected markets. This means a recommendation for the regulators that it is not appropriate to rationalize a higher degree of regulation in granting banking licenses on the size of the profits attained in the banking market, as the relationship between the degree of concentration in the banking market and the amount of profit according to our measurements does not exist.

Keywords: Banking system, imperfect competition, profitability.

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2475 Into Insights of Contextual Governance Framework for Religious Non-Profit Organizations

Authors: Saunah Zainon, Ruhaya Atan, Nadzira Yahaya, Marshita Hashim

Abstract:

Governance in business firms is a topic that has long been studied in the literature. Traditionally, governance in business firms has focused on the roles of boards of directors in representing and protecting the interests of shareholders. Governance has also been studied in the context of non-profit organizations because good governance is essential to increase the likelihood that they will comply with the regulatory requirements that best serve their multiple stakeholders. This paper provides insights on the need of governance framework for religious non-profit organizations (RNPOs) based on five underlying principles. This paper is important to help regulators to understand RNPOs’ governance framework. The regulators may use the framework suggested for the development of the RNPOs’ code of governance in the future.

Keywords: Framework, governance, religious, RNPOs.

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2474 An Output Oriented Super-Efficiency Model for Considering Time Lag Effect

Authors: Yanshuang Zhang, Byungho Jeong

Abstract:

There exists some time lag between the consumption of inputs and the production of outputs. This time lag effect should be considered in calculating efficiency of decision making units (DMU). Recently, a couple of DEA models were developed for considering time lag effect in efficiency evaluation of research activities. However, these models can’t discriminate efficient DMUs because of the nature of basic DEA model in which efficiency scores are limited to ‘1’. This problem can be resolved a super-efficiency model. However, a super efficiency model sometimes causes infeasibility problem. This paper suggests an output oriented super-efficiency model for efficiency evaluation under the consideration of time lag effect. A case example using a long term research project is given to compare the suggested model with the MpO model.

Keywords: DEA, Super-efficiency, Time Lag.

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2473 Power Efficiency Characteristics of Magnetohydrodynamic Thermodynamic Gas Cycle

Authors: Mahmoud Huleihil

Abstract:

In this study, the performance of a thermodynamic gas cycle of magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) power generation is considered and presented in terms of power efficiency curves. The dissipation mechanisms considered include: fluid friction modeled by means of the isentropic efficiency of the compressor, heat transfer leakage directly from the hot reservoir to the cold heat reservoir, and constant velocity of the MHD generator. The study demonstrates that power and efficiency vanish at the extremes of both slow and fast operating conditions. These points are demonstrated on power efficiency curves and the locus of efficiency at maximum power and the locus of maximum efficiency. Qualitatively, the considered loss mechanisms have a similar effect on the efficiency at maximum power operation and on maximum efficiency operation, thus these efficiencies are reduced, even for small values of the loss mechanisms.

Keywords: Magnetohydrodynamic generator, electrical efficiency, maximum power, maximum efficiency, heat engine.

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2472 The Research and Application of M/M/1/N Queuing Model with Variable Input Rates, Variable Service Rates and Impatient Customers

Authors: Quanru Pan

Abstract:

How to maintain the service speeds for the business to make the biggest profit is a problem worthy of study, which is discussed in this paper with the use of queuing theory. An M/M/1/N queuing model with variable input rates, variable service rates and impatient customers is established, and the following conclusions are drawn: the stationary distribution of the model, the relationship between the stationary distribution and the probability that there are n customers left in the system when a customer leaves (not including the customer who leaves himself), the busy period of the system, the average operating cycle, the loss probability for the customers not entering the system while they arriving at the system, the mean of the customers who leaves the system being for impatient, the loss probability for the customers not joining the queue due to the limited capacity of the system and many other indicators. This paper also indicates that the following conclusion is not correct: the more customers the business serve, the more profit they will get. At last, this paper points out the appropriate service speeds the business should keep to make the biggest profit.

Keywords: variable input rates, impatient customer, variable servicerates, profit maximization.

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2471 Economic and Environmental Benefits of the Best Available Technique Application in a Food Processing Plant

Authors: Frantisek Bozek, Pavel Budinsky, Ignac Hoza, Alexandr Bozek, Magdalena Naplavova

Abstract:

A cleaner production project was implemented in a bakery. The project is based on the substitution of the best available technique for an obsolete leaven production technology. The new technology enables production of durable, high-quality leavens. Moreover, 25% of flour as the original raw material can be replaced by pastry from the previous day production which has not been sold. That pastry was previously disposed in a waste incineration plant. Besides the environmental benefits resulting from less waste, lower consumption of energy, reduction of sewage waters quantity and floury dustiness there are also significant economic benefits. Payback period of investment was calculated with help of static method of financial analysis about 2.6 years, using dynamic method 3.5 years and an internal rate of return more than 29%. The supposed annual average profit after taxationin the second year of operation was incompliance with the real profit.

Keywords: Bakery, best available technology, cleaner production, costs, economic benefit, efficiency, energy, environmental benefit, investment, savings.

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2470 Identifying Business Incubators Based on Their Real Activities: Evidence from China

Authors: Lu Wei, Yunhao Zhu, Ping Deng, Wentao Yu

Abstract:

Past literature on business incubators distinguished incubators based on their mission statements. However, more and more mission statements become a slogan rather than a reality. It is therefore more appropriate to identify business incubators based on their real activities, rather than the missions they declared. With a sample of technology business incubators (TBIs) in China, we try to investigate business incubators’ real activities by examining the incubation efficiency along the following five dimensions, i.e., survival of new ventures, technology transfer, local economic growth, job creation, and profit generation. Furthermore, we identified six types of business incubators. The results indicate that generally Chinese TBIs have a greater preference for acquiring profits over other dimensions. 

Keywords: Business incubators, mission statements, real activities, incubation efficiency, technology business incubators, China.

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2469 A Modular On-line Profit Sharing Approach in Multiagent Domains

Authors: Pucheng Zhou, Bingrong Hong

Abstract:

How to coordinate the behaviors of the agents through learning is a challenging problem within multi-agent domains. Because of its complexity, recent work has focused on how coordinated strategies can be learned. Here we are interested in using reinforcement learning techniques to learn the coordinated actions of a group of agents, without requiring explicit communication among them. However, traditional reinforcement learning methods are based on the assumption that the environment can be modeled as Markov Decision Process, which usually cannot be satisfied when multiple agents coexist in the same environment. Moreover, to effectively coordinate each agent-s behavior so as to achieve the goal, it-s necessary to augment the state of each agent with the information about other existing agents. Whereas, as the number of agents in a multiagent environment increases, the state space of each agent grows exponentially, which will cause the combinational explosion problem. Profit sharing is one of the reinforcement learning methods that allow agents to learn effective behaviors from their experiences even within non-Markovian environments. In this paper, to remedy the drawback of the original profit sharing approach that needs much memory to store each state-action pair during the learning process, we firstly address a kind of on-line rational profit sharing algorithm. Then, we integrate the advantages of modular learning architecture with on-line rational profit sharing algorithm, and propose a new modular reinforcement learning model. The effectiveness of the technique is demonstrated using the pursuit problem.

Keywords: Multi-agent learning; reinforcement learning; rationalprofit sharing; modular architecture.

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2468 The Profit Trend of Cosmetics Products Using Bootstrap Edgeworth Approximation

Authors: Edlira Donefski, Lorenc Ekonomi, Tina Donefski

Abstract:

Edgeworth approximation is one of the most important statistical methods that has a considered contribution in the reduction of the sum of standard deviation of the independent variables’ coefficients in a Quantile Regression Model. This model estimates the conditional median or other quantiles. In this paper, we have applied approximating statistical methods in an economical problem. We have created and generated a quantile regression model to see how the profit gained is connected with the realized sales of the cosmetic products in a real data, taken from a local business. The Linear Regression of the generated profit and the realized sales was not free of autocorrelation and heteroscedasticity, so this is the reason that we have used this model instead of Linear Regression. Our aim is to analyze in more details the relation between the variables taken into study: the profit and the finalized sales and how to minimize the standard errors of the independent variable involved in this study, the level of realized sales. The statistical methods that we have applied in our work are Edgeworth Approximation for Independent and Identical distributed (IID) cases, Bootstrap version of the Model and the Edgeworth approximation for Bootstrap Quantile Regression Model. The graphics and the results that we have presented here identify the best approximating model of our study.

Keywords: Bootstrap, Edgeworth approximation, independent and Identical distributed, quantile.

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2467 A Super-Efficiency Model for Evaluating Efficiency in the Presence of Time Lag Effect

Authors: Yanshuang Zhang, Byungho Jeong

Abstract:

In many cases, there are some time lag between the consumption of inputs and the production of outputs. This time lag effect should be considered in evaluating the performance of organizations. Recently, a couple of DEA models were developed for considering time lag effect in efficiency evaluation of research activities. Multi-periods input(MpI) and Multi-periods output(MpO) models are integrate models to calculate simple efficiency considering time lag effect. However, these models can’t discriminate efficient DMUs because of the nature of basic DEA model in which efficiency scores are limited to ‘1’. That is, efficient DMUs can’t be discriminated because their efficiency scores are same. Thus, this paper suggests a super-efficiency model for efficiency evaluation under the consideration of time lag effect based on the MpO model. A case example using a long term research project is given to compare the suggested model with the MpO model.

Keywords: DEA, Super-efficiency, Time Lag.

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2466 Development of Solar Poly House Tunnel Dryer (STD) for Medicinal Plants

Authors: N. C. Shahi, Anupama Singh, A. E. Kate

Abstract:

There was a scenario present day that drying of fresh fruits and vegetables by indirect solar drying by using mechanical device; hence, an effort was made to develop a small scale solar tunnel dryer (STD). Drying of spinach is carried out to analyze the performance of the dryer and to study its drying characteristics. To evaluate the performance of dryer the independent variables were selected as air flow rate, loading density and shade net while collector efficiency, drying efficiency, overall efficiency and specific energy consumption were selected as responses during performing the experiments. The spinach was dried from initial moisture content 88.21-94.04% (w.b.) to final moisture content 3.50-5.13% (w.b.). The drying time considerably reduced as compared to open sun drying of spinach as sun drying took 15 h for drying. The average collector efficiency, drying efficiency and overall efficiency were in the range 28.73-61.15%, 11.63% to 22.13%, and 7.61-14.66%, respectively.

Keywords: Solar dryer, collector efficiency, drying efficiency, spinach.

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