1,174 research outputs found

    Retendering of ST-CV maintenance contract

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    During the next three years, the ST/CV group will be deeply involved in the installation works for the LHC project. During this period the need for maintenance activity will decrease. The minimum level will be reached during the “long shutdown” of the PS and SPS machines in 2005. The budget for the maintenance will decrease accordingly, thus the CV group had to review its maintenance strategy. The new contract, which started on January 1st 2003, has been defined to cope with these workload variations during the next years and to guarantee the minimum maintenance activity on the existing equipment. A lump-sum contract based on a win-win strategy has been discarded. The contractor no longer has to guarantee the performance of the CERN cooling and ventilation systems. A new price list strategy based on performance indicators and penalties has been chosen. The contractor now has to guarantee the performance of every maintenance operation demanded by CERN. This modification obliged the Operation section of the CV group to undergo a reorganisation during 2002 and is going to force deep changes in its work organisation

    How effective are conditional cash transfers? Evidence from Colombia

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    Conditional cash transfer (CCT) programmes are becoming an extremely popular tool for improving the education and health outcomes of poor children in developing countries. An incomplete list of countries in which they are being implemented under the support of the World Bank and other international financial institutions includes Mexico, Honduras, Nicaragua, Brazil, Turkey and Mozambique. While the implementation details vary from country to country, many are modelled on the Mexican PROGRESA. In a typical CCT, mothers from poor backgrounds receive cash conditional on their promoting certain activities on behalf of their children. For their youngest children - usually those below the age of 6 - the conditionality involves visits to preventive healthcare centres in which their growth is monitored. School attendance is the most common stipulation for receipt of cash transfers for older children - usually those between 7 and 17 years old. This targeting of health and education of children is at the essence of the long-term poverty alleviation objective of CCT programmes. Such transfer programmes are also aimed at the short-term reduction of poverty, through the provision of immediate funds to indigent households. In this Briefing Note, we will focus on the programme Familias en AcciĂłn (FA), the CCT implemented by the Colombian government from 2001/02. In particular, we will provide estimates of how the programme has influenced key welfare indicators such as school attendance, child nutrition and health status, as well as household consumption. In this respect, we will update the preliminary results that were reported in Attanasio et al. (2003 and 2004)

    Post-ischemic brain damage: NF-kappaB dimer heterogeneity as a molecular determinant of neuron vulnerability

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    Nuclear factor-kappaB (NFkB) has been proposed to serve a dual function as a regulator of neuron survival in pathological conditions associated with neurodegeneration. NF-jB is a transcription family of factors comprising five different proteins, namely p50, RelA ⁄ p65, c-Rel, RelB and p52, which can combine differently to form active dimers in response to external stimuli. Recent research shows that diverse NF-jB dimers lead to cell death or cell survival in neurons exposed to ischemic injury. While the p50 ⁄ p65 dimer participates in the pathogenesis of post-ischemic injury by inducing pro-apoptotic gene expression, c-Rel-containing dimers increase neuron resistance to ischemia by inducing anti-apoptotic gene transcription. We present, in this report, the latest findings and consider the therapeutic potential of targeting different NF-kB dimers to limit ischemia-associated neurodegeneration

    Design of a high power production target for the Beam Dump Facility at CERN

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    The Beam Dump Facility (BDF) project is a proposed general-purpose facility at CERN, dedicated to beam dump and fixed target experiments. In its initial phase, the facility is foreseen to be exploited by the Search for Hidden Particles (SHiP) experiment. Physics requirements call for a pulsed 400 GeV/c proton beam as well as the highest possible number of protons on target (POT) each year of operation, in order to search for feebly interacting particles. The target/dump assembly lies at the heart of the facility, with the aim of safely absorbing the full high intensity Super Proton Synchrotron (SPS) beam, while maximizing the production of charmed and beauty mesons. High-Z materials are required for the target/dump, in order to have the shortest possible absorber and reduce muon background for the downstream experiment. The high average power deposited on target (305 kW) creates a challenge for heat removal. During the BDF facility Comprehensive Design Study (CDS), launched by CERN in 2016, extensive studies have been carried out in order to define and assess the target assembly design. These studies are described in the present contribution, which details the proposed design of the BDF production target, as well as the material selection process and the optimization of the target configuration and beam dilution. One of the specific challenges and novelty of this work is the need to consider new target materials, such as a molybdenum alloy (TZM) as core absorbing material and Ta2.5W as cladding. Thermo-structural and fluid dynamics calculations have been performed to evaluate the reliability of the target and its cooling system under beam operation. In the framework of the target comprehensive design, a preliminary mechanical design of the full target assembly has also been carried out, assessing the feasibility of the whole target system.Comment: 17 pages, 18 figure

    The RESEARCH project. Soil-related hazards and archaeological heritage in the challenge of climate change

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    Archaeological Heritage, naturally endangered by environmental processes and anthropogenic pressures, is today increasingly at risk, because of intense human activities and climate change, and their impact on atmosphere and soil. European research is increasingly dedicated to the development of good practices for monitoring archaeological sites and their preservation. One of the running projects about these topics is RESEARCH (Remote Sensing techniques for Archaeology; H2020-MSCA-RISE, grant agreement: 823987), started in 2018 and ending in 2022. RESEARCH aims at testing risk assessment methodology using an integrated system of documentation and research in the fields of archaeology and environmental studies. It will introduce a strategy and select the most efficient tools for the harmonization of different data, criteria, and indicators in order to produce an effective risk assessment. These will be used to assess and monitor the impact of soil erosion, land movement, and land-use change on tangible archaeological heritage assets. As a final product, the Project addresses the development of a multi-task thematic platform, combining advanced remote sensing technologies with GIS application. The demonstration and validation of the Platform will be conducted on six case studies located in Italy, Greece, Cyprus, and Poland, and variously affected by the threats considered by the Project. In the frame of RISE (Research and Innovation Staff Exchange), RESEARCH will coordinate the existing expertise and research efforts of seven beneficiaries into a synergetic plan of collaborations and exchanges of personnel (Ph.D. students and research staff), to offer a comprehensive transfer of knowledge and training environment for the researchers in the specific area. This paper aims at illustrating the results of the activities conducted during the first year of the Project, which consisted in developing an effective risk assessment methodology for soil-related threats affecting archaeological heritage, and defining the scientific requirements and the user requirements of the Platform. The activities have been conducted in synergy with all the Partners and were supported by the possibility of staff exchange allowed by the funding frame MSCA-RISE

    A Combine On-Line Acoustic Flowmeter and Fluorocarbon Coolant Mixture Analyzer for The ATLAS Silicon Tracker

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    An upgrade to the ATLAS silicon tracker cooling control system may require a change from C3F8 (octafluoro-propane) to a blend containing 10-30% of C2F6 (hexafluoro-ethane) to reduce the evaporation temperature and better protect the silicon from cumulative radiation damage with increasing LHC luminosity. Central to this upgrade is a new acoustic instrument for the real-time measurement of the C3F8/C2F6 mixture ratio and flow. The instrument and its Supervisory, Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) software are described in this paper. The instrument has demonstrated a resolution of 3.10-3 for C3F8/C2F6 mixtures with ~20%C2F6, and flow resolution of 2% of full scale for mass flows up to 30gs-1. In mixtures of widely-differing molecular weight (mw), higher mixture precision is possible: a sensitivity of < 5.10-4 to leaks of C3F8 into the ATLAS pixel detector nitrogen envelope (mw difference 160) has been seen. The instrument has many potential applications, including the analysis of mixtures of hydrocarbons, vapours for semi-conductor manufacture and anaesthesia

    Development of a custom on-line ultrasonic vapour analyzer/flowmeter for the ATLAS inner detector, with application to gaseous tracking and Cherenkov detectors

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    Precision sound velocity measurements can simultaneously determine binary gas composition and flow. We have developed an analyzer with custom electronics, currently in use in the ATLAS inner detector, with numerous potential applications. The instrument has demonstrated ~0.3% mixture precision for C3F8/C2F6 mixtures and < 10-4 resolution for N2/C3F8 mixtures. Moderate and high flow versions of the instrument have demonstrated flow resolutions of +/- 2% F.S. for flows up to 250 l.min-1, and +/- 1.9% F.S. for linear flow velocities up to 15 ms-1; the latter flow approaching that expected in the vapour return of the thermosiphon fluorocarbon coolant recirculator being built for the ATLAS silicon tracker.Comment: Paper submitted to TWEPP2012; Topical Workshop on Electronics for Particle Physics, Oxford, UK, September 17-21, 2012. KEYWORDS: Sonar; Saturated fluorocarbons; Flowmetry; Sound velocity, Gas mixture analysis. 8 pages, 7 figure


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    none11Micro-vesicles can be released by different cell types and operate as ‘safe containers’ mediatine inter-cellular communication. In this work we investigated whether cultured myoblasts could release exosomes. The reported data demonstrate, for the first time, that C2C12 myoblasts release micro-vesicles as shown by the presence of two exosome markers (Tsg101 and Alix proteins). Using real-time PCR analysis it was shown that these micro-vesicles, like other cell types, carry mtDNA. Proteomic characterization of the released micro-vesicle contents showed the presence of many proteins involved in signal transduction. The bioinformatics assessment of the Disorder Index and Aggregation Index of these proteins suggested that C2C12 micro-vesicles mainly deliver the machinery for signal transduction to target cells rather than key proteins involved in hub functions in molecular networks. The presence of IGFBP-5 in the purified micro-vesicles represents an exception, since this binding protein can play a key role in the modulation of the IGF-1 signalling pathway. In conclusion, the present findings demonstrate that skeletal muscle cells release micro-vesicles, which probably have an important role in the communication processes within skeletal muscles and between skeletal muscles and other organs. In particular, the present findings suggest possibile new diagnostic approaches to skeletal muscle diseases.openM. GUESCINI; D. GUIDOLIN; L. VALLORANI; L. CASADEI; A.M. GIOACCHINI; P. TIBOLLO; M. BATTISTELLI; E. FALCIERI; L. BATTISTIN; L.F. AGNATI; V. STOCCHIGuescini, Michele; D., Guidolin; Vallorani, Luciana; Casadei, Lucia; Gioacchini, ANNA MARIA; P., Tibollo; Battistelli, Michela; Falcieri, Elisabetta; L., Battistin; L. F., Agnati; Stocchi, Vilbert

    Human Red Blood Cells as Oxygen Carriers to Improve Ex-Situ Liver Perfusion in a Rat Model

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    Ex-situ machine perfusion (MP) has been increasingly used to enhance liver quality in different settings. Small animal models can help to implement this procedure. As most normothermic MP (NMP) models employ sub-physiological levels of oxygen delivery (DO2), the aim of this study was to investigate the effectiveness and safety of different DO2, using human red blood cells (RBCs) as oxygen carriers on metabolic recovery in a rat model of NMP. Four experimental groups (n = 5 each) consisted of (1) native (untreated/control), (2) liver static cold storage (SCS) 30 min without NMP, (3) SCS followed by 120 min of NMP with Dulbecco-Modified-Eagle-Medium as perfusate (DMEM), and (4) similar to group 3, but perfusion fluid was added with human RBCs (hematocrit 15%) (BLOOD). Compared to DMEM, the BLOOD group showed increased liver DO2 (p = 0.008) and oxygen consumption ( V O \u2d9 2) (p &lt; 0.001); lactate clearance (p &lt; 0.001), potassium (p &lt; 0.001), and glucose (p = 0.029) uptake were enhanced. ATP levels were likewise higher in BLOOD relative to DMEM (p = 0.031). V O \u2d9 2 and DO2 were highly correlated (p &lt; 0.001). Consistently, the main metabolic parameters were directly correlated with DO2 and V O \u2d9 2. No human RBC related damage was detected. In conclusion, an optimized DO2 significantly reduces hypoxic damage-related effects occurring during NMP. Human RBCs can be safely used as oxygen carriers