871 research outputs found

    Strain in wet thermally oxidized square and circular mesas

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    In this paper, we report the observation, through optical microscopy, of drumhead-like patterns in square and circular mesas which have been wet thermally oxidized to completion. Micro-Raman spectroscopy measurements are used to show that these patterns roughly correspond to variations in strain induced in surrounding semiconductor layers by the oxidation process. In addition, the patterns have a specific orientation with respect to the crystallographic axes of the semiconductor. A crystallographic dependence of the oxidation process itself is demonstrated and used to explain the orientation of the drumhead patterns

    Effect of cylindrical geometry on the wet thermal oxidation of AlAs

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    We have investigated the wet thermal oxidation of AlAs in cylindrical geometry, a typical configuration for vertical-cavity surface-emitting lasers. Through both experiment and theoretical calculations, we demonstrate a significantly different time dependence for circular mesas from what has been reported in the literature both in studies of stripes and in a study of circular mesas. We attribute this different time dependence to the effect of geometry on the oxidation

    All-Optical Reinforcement Learning in Solitonic X-Junctions

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    L'etologia ha dimostrato che gruppi di animali o colonie possono eseguire calcoli complessi distribuendo semplici processi decisionali ai membri del gruppo. Ad esempio, le colonie di formiche possono ottimizzare le traiettorie verso il cibo eseguendo sia un rinforzo (o una cancellazione) delle tracce di feromone sia spostarsi da una traiettoria ad un'altra con feromone più forte. Questa procedura delle formiche possono essere implementati in un hardware fotonico per riprodurre l'elaborazione del segnale stigmergico. Presentiamo qui innovative giunzioni a X completamente integrate realizzate utilizzando guide d'onda solitoniche in grado di fornire entrambi i processi decisionali delle formiche. Le giunzioni a X proposte possono passare da comportamenti simmetrici (50/50) ad asimmetrici (80/20) utilizzando feedback ottici, cancellando i canali di uscita inutilizzati o rinforzando quelli usati.Ethology has shown that animal groups or colonies can perform complex calculation distributing simple decision-making processes to the group members. For example ant colonies can optimize the trajectories towards the food by performing both a reinforcement (or a cancellation) of the pheromone traces and a switch from one path to another with stronger pheromone. Such ant's processes can be implemented in a photonic hardware to reproduce stigmergic signal processing. We present innovative, completely integrated X-junctions realized using solitonic waveguides which can provide both ant's decision-making processes. The proposed X-junctions can switch from symmetric (50/50) to asymmetric behaviors (80/20) using optical feedbacks, vanishing unused output channels or reinforcing the used ones

    Safety of repeated sessions of transcranial direct current stimulation: A systematic review

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    Background: Repeated sessions of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) are increasingly used for therapeutic applications. However, adverse events (AEs) associated with repeated sessions have not been comprehensively evaluated. Objective: The aim of this study was therefore to evaluate the safety of repeated sessions of tDCS, examining AE risk relative to tDCS exposure. Further, to identify whether certain participant populations are particularly at risk from tDCS. Methods: A systematic review and meta-analysis included sham-controlled studies (up to June 2017) involving two or more tDCS sessions, spaced not more than a day apart. Data was extracted on AEs reported, total tDCS exposure (cumulative charge), and diagnostic groups (Healthy, Pain Disorder, Stroke, Neurocognitive Disorder, Neuropsychiatric Disorder, and Other). Univariate simple linear meta-regression analyses examined AE likelihood, comparing active and sham tDCS, with increasing exposure. Rates of AEs were compared for diagnostic groups. Results: 158 studies (total 4130 participants) met inclusion criteria and were included for quantitative analyses. The incidence of AEs (examined per session, by proportion of participants, and by the number of studies reporting AEs) did not increase with higher levels of tDCS exposure. Furthermore, AE rates were not found to be greater for any diagnostic group. Conclusions: Little evidence was found to suggest that repeated sessions of active tDCS pose increased risk to participants compared to sham tDCS within the limits of parameters used to date. Increased risks associated with greater levels of exposure to tDCS, or rare and under-reported AEs, however, cannot be ruled out

    Development policy planning in Ghana: The case of health care provision

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    This paper examines the historical development of health policy in Ghana within the framework of financial, geographical accessibility and the availability of health care. Historically, health policy has been urban biased, and largely focused on financial accessibility. Even Nkrumah's free health care policy could not adequately address the problem of inadequate health professionals and facilities in the rural areas.The study also established that poverty is also largely a rural phenomenon.The poor benefit less from the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS). This situation makes the NHIS lack social equity, the very reason for its being. We recommend that government should expand health facilities in the rural areas, and introduce attractive incentive packages to attract and retain health professionals in such areas. There is an urgent need for rigorous criteria to be developed by the NHIS to identify the very poor for health insurance premium exemptions

    Plant height and hydraulic vulnerability to drought and cold

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    Understanding how plants survive drought and cold is increasingly important as plants worldwide experience dieback with drought in moist places and grow taller with warming in cold ones. Crucial in plant climate adaptation are the diameters of water-transporting conduits. Sampling 537 species across climate zones dominated by angiosperms, we find that plant size is unambiguously the main driver of conduit diameter variation. And because taller plants have wider conduits, and wider conduits within species are more vulnerable to conduction-blocking embolisms, taller conspecifics should be more vulnerable than shorter ones, a prediction we confirm with a plantation experiment. As a result, maximum plant size should be short under drought and cold, which cause embolism, or increase if these pressures relax. That conduit diameter and embolism vulnerability are inseparably related to plant size helps explain why factors that interact with conduit diameter, such as drought or warming, are altering plant heights worldwide

    ANALYZING AND PRICE FORECASTING FOR SELECTED GRAIN CLASSIFIED AS BIOMASS FEEDSTOCK ON THE EU MARKETS

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    The paper deals with the price trends of biomass feedstock used as renewable energy sources. Special attention is paid to kind of grain classified as the particular sort of biomass in Poland. The comparative prices analysis of some selected kind of grain on the markets of the EU countries is presented in this paper. Also there was demonstrated validity of two forecast models in order to forecast the prices for one month. After the forecasting, the accuracy was evaluated as well as the validation forecasts allowing for evaluation

    The direct renin inhibitor aliskiren improves vascular remodelling in transgenic rats harbouring human renin and angiotensinogen genes

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    In the present study, we tested the hypothesis that chronic treatment with the direct rennin inhibitor aliskiren improves the remodelling of resistance arteries in dTGR (double-transgenic rats). dTGR (5 weeks) were treated with aliskiren (3 mg/kg of body mass per day) or ramipril (1 mg/kg of body mass per day) for 14 days and compared with age-matched vehicle-treated dTGR. BP (blood pressure) was similarly reduced in both aliskiren-treated and ramipril-treated rats compared with control dTGR (167± 1 and 169± 2 mmHg compared with 197± 4 mmHg respectively; P<0.05). The M/L (media-to-lumen) ratio assessed on pressurized preparations was equally reduced in aliskiren-treated and ramipril-treated rats compared with controls (6.3± 0.5 and 6.4±0.2% compared with 9.8± 0.4% respectively; P<0.05). Endothelium-dependent and -independent relaxations were similar among the groups. L-NAME (NG-nitro-L-arginine methyl ester) significantly reduced acetylcholine-induced dilation in drug-treated dTGR. This effect was significantly more prominent in aliskiren-treated rats. eNOS (endothelial NO synthase) expression showed a 2-fold increase only in aliskiren-treated dTGR as compared with controls (P<0.01) and ramipril-treated dTGR (P<0.05). Plasma nitrite, as an index of NO production, was significantly increased in dTGR treated with either aliskiren or ramipril compared with controls. Only aliskiren induced a 2-fold increase in plasma nitrite, which was significantly greater than that induced by ramipril (P<0.05). gp91phox expression and ROS (reactive oxygen species) production in aorta were significantly and similarly reduced by both drugs. In conclusion, equieffective hypotensive doses of aliskiren or ramipril reduced the M/L ratio of mesenteric arteries and improved oxidative stress in dTGR. However, only aliskiren increased further NO production in the vasculature. Hence, in dTGR, direct renin inhibition induces favourable effects similar to that induced by ACE (angiotensin-converting enzyme) inhibition in improving vascular remodelling through different mechanisms. © The Authors Journal compilation. 2013 Biochemical Society
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