480 research outputs found

    The Human Right to Water and Unconventional Energy

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    Access to water, in sufficient quantities and of sufficient quality is vital for human health. The United Nations Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (in General Comment 15, drafted 2002) argued that access to water was a condition for the enjoyment of the right to an adequate standard of living, inextricably related to the right to the highest attainable standard of health, and thus a human right. On 28 July 2010 the United Nations General Assembly declared safe and clean drinking water and sanitation a human right essential to the full enjoyment of life and all other human rights. This paper charts the international legal development of the right to water and its relevance to discussions surrounding the growth of unconventional energy and its heavy reliance on water. We consider key data from the country with arguably the most mature and extensive industry, the USA, and highlight the implications for water usage and water rights. We conclude that, given the weight of testimony of local people from our research, along with data from scientific literature, non-governmental organization (NGO) and other policy reports, that the right to water for residents living near fracking sites is likely to be severely curtailed. Even so, from the data presented here, we argue that the major issue regarding water use is the shifting of the resource from society to industry and the demonstrable lack of supply-side price signal that would demand that the industry reduce or stabilize its water demand per unit of energy produced. Thus, in the US context alone, there is considerable evidence that the human right to water will be seriously undermined by the growth of the unconventional oil and gas industry, and given its spread around the globe this could soon become a global human rights issue

    Using SFOC to fly the Magellan Venus mapping mission

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    Traditionally, spacecraft flight operations at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) have been performed by teams of spacecraft experts utilizing ground software designed specifically for the current mission. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory set out to reduce the cost of spacecraft mission operations by designing ground data processing software that could be used by multiple spacecraft missions, either sequentially or concurrently. The Space Flight Operations Center (SFOC) System was developed to provide the ground data system capabilities needed to monitor several spacecraft simultaneously and provide enough flexibility to meet the specific needs of individual projects. The Magellan Spacecraft Team utilizes the SFOC hardware and software designed for engineering telemetry analysis, both real-time and non-real-time. The flexibility of the SFOC System has allowed the spacecraft team to integrate their own tools with SFOC tools to perform the tasks required to operate a spacecraft mission. This paper describes how the Magellan Spacecraft Team is utilizing the SFOC System in conjunction with their own software tools to perform the required tasks of spacecraft event monitoring as well as engineering data analysis and trending

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    Isbourne Catchment Project: Scoping Study (Final Report), Report to Isbourne Catchment Partnership & Environment Agency.

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    The School of Natural and Social Sciences (SNSS) and the Countryside and Communities Research Institute (CCRI) at the University of Gloucestershire were commissioned by the Environment Agency (EA) and the Isbourne Catchment Group (ICG) to undertake a Scoping Study of the River Isbourne to assess the feasibility and potential benefits of applying natural flood management (NFM) techniques across the Isbourne catchment. Other options had been considered in an analysis of the catchment in 2010 (Haycock 2010) and some minor changes have been made. However, most significant engineering options have been ruled out and not considered to be cost effective whilst soft engineering options such as land use change and natural flood management were recommended for further investigation. This report describes the catchment characteristics, outlines potential NFM methods before specifying which would be appropriate for the Isbourne catchment and making recommendations for future work

    Effect of Clouds on Shuttle Imaging

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    This report describes the results of the AMU's task for determining the effect of clouds on optical imaging of the Space Shuttle launch vehicle during its ascent phase from lift-off to Solid Rocket Booster (SRB) Separation. This effort was motivated by Recommendation R3.4-1 from the Columbia Accident Investigation Board Report. The AMU developed a 3-dimensional (3D) model to forecast the probability that at any time from lift-off to SRB separation, at least three of the ascent imaging cameras would have a view of the Shuttle unobstructed by cloud. Because current observational and modeling capabilities do not permit accurate forecasts of cloud morphology and location, the AMU simulated obscuration of the lines-of-sight (LOS) from a network of cameras to the Shuttle by idealized cloud-fields placed randomly within the 3D domain. For each random realization of numerous cloud-field scenarios the number of simultaneous views of the Shuttle was computed from the LOS data between lift-off and SRB separation. The percent of time with 3 simultaneous views was averaged from 100 random realizations of each scenario. Analyses of the percent of time viewable were made to determine its sensitivity to cloud amount, cloud base height, cloud thickness, cloud horizontal dimensions, and an upgrade of the camera network

    The XMM Cluster Survey: Evidence for energy injection at high redshift from evolution of the X-ray luminosity-temperature relation

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    We measure the evolution of the X-ray luminosity-temperature (L_X-T) relation since z~1.5 using a sample of 211 serendipitously detected galaxy clusters with spectroscopic redshifts drawn from the XMM Cluster Survey first data release (XCS-DR1). This is the first study spanning this redshift range using a single, large, homogeneous cluster sample. Using an orthogonal regression technique, we find no evidence for evolution in the slope or intrinsic scatter of the relation since z~1.5, finding both to be consistent with previous measurements at z~0.1. However, the normalisation is seen to evolve negatively with respect to the self-similar expectation: we find E(z)^{-1} L_X = 10^{44.67 +/- 0.09} (T/5)^{3.04 +/- 0.16} (1+z)^{-1.5 +/- 0.5}, which is within 2 sigma of the zero evolution case. We see milder, but still negative, evolution with respect to self-similar when using a bisector regression technique. We compare our results to numerical simulations, where we fit simulated cluster samples using the same methods used on the XCS data. Our data favour models in which the majority of the excess entropy required to explain the slope of the L_X-T relation is injected at high redshift. Simulations in which AGN feedback is implemented using prescriptions from current semi-analytic galaxy formation models predict positive evolution of the normalisation, and differ from our data at more than 5 sigma. This suggests that more efficient feedback at high redshift may be needed in these models.Comment: Accepted for publication in MNRAS; 12 pages, 6 figures; added references to match published versio

    Usability, acceptability, and safety analysis of a computer-tailored web-based exercise intervention (exerciseguide) for individuals with metastatic prostate cancer: Multi-methods laboratory-based study

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    Background: Digital health interventions such as tailored websites are emerging as valuable tools to provide individualized exercise and behavioral change information for individuals diagnosed with cancer. Objective: The aim of this study is to investigate and iteratively refine the acceptability and usability of a web-based exercise intervention (ExerciseGuide) for men with metastatic prostate cancer and determine how well individuals can replicate the video-based exercise prescription. Methods: A laboratory-based multi-methods design was used, incorporating questionnaires, think-aloud tests, interviews, and movement screening among 11 men aged 63 to 82 years with metastatic prostate cancer. Overall, 9 participants were undergoing androgen deprivation therapy, and 2 were completing chemotherapy. Data were collected in two waves, with changes made for quality improvement after participant 5. Results: The intervention\u27s usability score was deemed moderate overall but improved after modifications (from 60, SD 2.9 to 69.6, SD 2.2 out of 100). Overall, the participants found the intervention acceptable, with scores improving from wave 1 (24.2, SD 1.1 out of 30) to wave 2 (26.3, SD 2.1 out of 30). The personalized multimodal exercise prescription and computer-tailored education were seen as valuable. After wave 1, website navigation videos were added, medical terminology was simplified, and a telehealth component was included after expert real-time telehealth support was requested. Wave 2 changes included the added variety for aerobic exercise modes, reduced computer-tailoring question loads, and improved consistency of style and grammar. Finally, the participants could replicate the resistance exercise videos to a satisfactory level as judged by the movement screen; however, additional technique cueing within the videos is recommended to address safety concerns. Conclusions: The acceptability and usability of ExerciseGuide were deemed satisfactory. Various problems were identified and resolved. Notably, the participants requested the inclusion of personalized expert support through telehealth. The resistance training algorithms were shown to provide appropriate content safely, and the users could replicate the exercise technique unaided to a satisfactory level. This study has optimized the ExerciseGuide intervention for further investigation in this population

    Cell sheets in cell therapies

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    This review aims to provide a broad introduction to the use of cell sheets and the role of materials in the delivery of cell sheets to patients within a clinical setting. Traditionally, cells sheets have been, and currently are, fabricated using established and accepted cell culture methods within standard formats (e.g., petri dishes) utilizing biological substrates. Synthetic surfaces provide a far more versatile system for culturing and delivering cell sheets. This has the potential to positively affect quality, and efficient, localized cell delivery has a significant impact on patient outcome and on the overall cost of goods. We highlight current applications of these advanced carriers and future applications of these surfaces and cell sheets with an emphasis both on clinical use and regulatory requirements
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