63 research outputs found

    A framework to review performance measurement systems.

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    This paper describes a structured review framework for managing business performance. The framework entails the review of both business performance, including thestrategic relevance of the measures, as well as the efficiency and effectiveness of the performance measurement system itself. A range of approaches and tools are employed in the framework which features a review card providing a high level view of the review process, showing the different types of review perspectives and their interactions

    Hardware-in-the-loop grid simulator system and method

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    A hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) electrical grid simulation system and method that combines a reactive divider with a variable frequency converter to better mimic and control expected and unexpected parameters in an electrical grid. The invention provides grid simulation in a manner to allow improved testing of variable power generators, such as wind turbines, and their operation once interconnected with an electrical grid in multiple countries. The system further comprises an improved variable fault reactance (reactive divider) capable of providing a variable fault reactance power output to control a voltage profile, therein creating an arbitrary recovery voltage. The system further comprises an improved isolation transformer designed to isolate zero-sequence current from either a primary or secondary winding in a transformer or pass the zero-sequence current from a primary to a secondary winding

    Spray Printing of Organic Semiconducting Single Crystals

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    Single-crystal semiconductors have been at the forefront of scientific interest for more than 70 years, serving as the backbone of electronic devices. Inorganic single crystals are typically grown from a melt using time-consuming and energy-intensive processes. Organic semiconductor single crystals, however, can be grown using solution-based methods at room temperature in air, opening up the possibility of large-scale production of inexpensive electronics targeting applications ranging from field-effect transistors and light-emitting diodes to medical X-ray detectors. Here we demonstrate a low-cost, scalable spray-printing process to fabricate high-quality organic single crystals, based on various semiconducting small molecules on virtually any substrate by combining the advantages of antisolvent crystallization and solution shearing. The crystals’ size, shape and orientation are controlled by the sheer force generated by the spray droplets’ impact onto the antisolvent’s surface. This method demonstrates the feasibility of a spray-on single-crystal organic electronics

    Modeling andsimulationofspeedselectiononleftventricular assist devices

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    The control problem for LVADs is to set pump speed such that cardiac output and pressure perfusion are within acceptable physiological ranges. However, current technology of LVADs cannot provide for a closed-loop control scheme that can make adjustments based on the patient\u27s level of activity. In this context, the SensorART Speed Selection Module (SSM) integrates various hardware and software components in order to improve the quality of the patients\u27 treatment and the workflow of the specialists. It enables specialists to better understand the patient-device interactions, and improve their knowledge. The SensorART SSM includes two tools of the Specialist Decision Support System (SDSS); namely the Suction Detection Tool and the Speed Selection Tool. A VAD Heart Simulation Platform (VHSP) is also part of the system. The VHSP enables specialists to simulate the behavior of a patient?s circulatory system, using different LVAD types and functional parameters. The SDSS is a web-based application that offers specialists with a plethora of tools for monitoring, designing the best therapy plan, analyzing data, extracting new knowledge and making informative decisions. In this paper, two of these tools, the Suction Detection Tool and Speed Selection Tool are presented. The former allows the analysis of the simulations sessions from the VHSP and the identification of issues related to suction phenomenon with high accuracy 93%. The latter provides the specialists with a powerful support in their attempt to effectively plan the treatment strategy. It allows them to draw conclusions about the most appropriate pump speed settings. Preliminary assessments connecting the Suction Detection Tool to the VHSP are presented in this paper

    Biological monitoring of pesticide exposures in residents living near agricultural land

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    <p>Abstract</p> <p>Background</p> <p>There is currently a lack of reliable information on the exposures of residents and bystanders to pesticides in the UK. Previous research has shown that the methods currently used for assessing pesticide exposure for regulatory purposes are appropriate for farm workers <abbrgrp><abbr bid="B1">1</abbr></abbrgrp>. However, there were indications that the exposures of bystanders may sometimes be underestimated. The previous study did not collect data for residents. Therefore, this study aims to collect measurements to determine if the current methods and tools are appropriate for assessing pesticide exposure for residents living near agricultural fields.</p> <p>Methods/design</p> <p>The study will recruit owners of farms and orchards (hereafter both will be referred to as farms) that spray their agricultural crops with certain specified pesticides, and which have residential areas in close proximity to these fields. Recruited farms will be asked to provide details of their pesticide usage throughout the spray season. Informed consenting residents (adults (18 years and over) and children(aged 4-12 years)) will be asked to provide urine samples and accompanying activity diaries during the spraying season and in additionfor a limited number of weeks before/after the spray season to allow background pesticide metabolite levels to be determined. Selected urine samples will be analysed for the pesticide metabolites of interest. Statistical analysis and mathematical modelling will use the laboratory results, along with the additional data collected from the farmers and residents, to determine systemic exposure levels amongst residents. Surveys will be carried out in selected areas of the United Kingdom over two years (2011 and 2012), covering two spraying seasons and the time between the spraying seasons.</p> <p>Discussion</p> <p>The described study protocol was implemented for the sample and data collection procedures carried out in 2011. Based on experience to date, no major changes to the protocol are anticipated for the 2012 spray season although the pesticides and regional areas for inclusion in 2012 are still to be confirmed.</p

    Correlation of p16INK4A Expression and HPV Copy Number with Cellular FTIR Spectroscopic Signatures of Cervical Cancer Cells

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    Cervical cancer, a potentially preventable disease, has its main aetiology in infection by high risk human papillomavirus (HR-HPV). Approaches to improving cervical cancer screening and diagnostic methodologies include molecular biological analysis, targeting of biomarker proteins, but also exploration and implementation of new techniques such as vibrational spectroscopy. This study correlates the biomarker protein p16INK4A expression levels dependent on HPV copy number with the infrared absorption spectral signatures of the cervical cancer cell lines, HPV negative C33A, HPV-16 positive SiHa and CaSki and HPV-18 positive HeLa. Confocal fluorescence microscopy demonstrated that p16INK4A is expressed in all investigated cell lines in both nuclear and cytoplasmic regions, although predominantly in the cytoplasm. Flow cytometry was used to quantify the p16INK4A expression levels and demonstrated a correlation, albeit nonlinear, between the reported number of integrated HPV copies and p16INK4A expression levels. CaSki cells were found to have the highest level of expression, HeLa intermediate levels, and SiHa and C33A the lowest levels. FTIR spectra revealed differences in nucleic acid, lipid and protein signatures between the cell lines with varying HPV copy number. Peak intensities exhibited increasing tendency in nucleic acid levels and decreasing tendency in lipid levels with increasing HPV copy number, and although they were found to be nonlinearly correlated with the HPV copy number, their dependence on p16INK4A levels was found to be close to linear. Principal Component Analysis (PCA) of the Infrared absorption spectra revealed differences between nuclear and cytoplasmic spectroscopic signatures for all cell lines, and furthermore clearly differentiated the groups of spectra representing each cell line. Finally, Partial Least Squares (PLS) analysis was employed to construct a model which can predict the p16INK4A expression level based on a spectral fingerprint of a cell line, demonstrating the diagnostic potential of spectroscopic techniques

    A genome-wide meta-analysis yields 46 new loci associating with biomarkers of iron homeostasis

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    Bell et al. report 46 new loci associated with biomarkers of iron homeostasis, including ferritin levels, iron binding capacity, and iron saturation, in the Icelandic, Danish and UK populations. The associated loci point to new iron-regulating proteins and important genetic differences between men and women
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