1,440 research outputs found

    Aerothermodynamic Analysis of a Reentry Brazilian Satellite

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    This work deals with a computational investigation on the small ballistic reentry Brazilian vehicle SARA (acronyms for SAt\'elite de Reentrada Atmosf\'erica). Hypersonic flows over the vehicle SARA at zero-degree angle of attack in a chemical equilibrium and thermal non-equilibrium are modeled by the Direct Simulation Monte Carlo (DSMC) method, which has become the main technique for studying complex multidimensional rarefied flows, and that properly accounts for the non-equilibrium aspects of the flows. The emphasis of this paper is to examine the behavior of the primary properties during the high altitude portion of SARA reentry. In this way, velocity, density, pressure and temperature field are investigated for altitudes of 100, 95, 90, 85 and 80 km. In addition, comparisons based on geometry are made between axisymmetric and planar two-dimensional configurations. Some significant differences between these configurations were noted on the flowfield structure in the reentry trajectory. The analysis showed that the flow disturbances have different influence on velocity, density, pressure and temperature along the stagnation streamline ahead of the capsule nose. It was found that the stagnation region is a thermally stressed zone. It was also found that the stagnation region is a zone of strong compression, high wall pressure. Wall pressure distributions are compared with those of available experimental data and good agreement is found along the spherical nose for the altitude range investigated.Comment: The paper will be published in Vol. 42 of the Brazilian Journal of Physic

    Evaluating Maintainability Prejudices with a Large-Scale Study of Open-Source Projects

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    Exaggeration or context changes can render maintainability experience into prejudice. For example, JavaScript is often seen as least elegant language and hence of lowest maintainability. Such prejudice should not guide decisions without prior empirical validation. We formulated 10 hypotheses about maintainability based on prejudices and test them in a large set of open-source projects (6,897 GitHub repositories, 402 million lines, 5 programming languages). We operationalize maintainability with five static analysis metrics. We found that JavaScript code is not worse than other code, Java code shows higher maintainability than C# code and C code has longer methods than other code. The quality of interface documentation is better in Java code than in other code. Code developed by teams is not of higher and large code bases not of lower maintainability. Projects with high maintainability are not more popular or more often forked. Overall, most hypotheses are not supported by open-source data.Comment: 20 page

    Aquatic community response to volcanic eruptions on the Ecuadorian Andean flank: evidence from the palaeoecological record

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    Aquatic ecosystems in the tropical Andes are under increasing pressure from human modification of the landscape (deforestation and dams) and climatic change (increase of extreme events and 1.5 °C on average temperatures are projected for AD 2100). However, the resilience of these ecosystems to perturbations is poorly understood. Here we use a multi-proxy palaeoecological approach to assess the response of aquatic ecosystems to a major mechanism for natural disturbance, volcanic ash deposition. Specifically, we present data from two Neotropical lakes located on the eastern Andean flank of Ecuador. Laguna Pindo (1°27.132′S–78°04.847′W) is a tectonically formed closed basin surrounded by a dense mid-elevation forest, whereas Laguna Baños (0°19.328′S–78°09.175′W) is a glacially formed lake with an inflow and outflow in high Andean Páramo grasslands. In each lake we examined the dynamics of chironomids and other aquatic and semi-aquatic organisms to explore the effect of thick (> 5 cm) volcanic deposits on the aquatic communities in these two systems with different catchment features. In both lakes past volcanic ash deposition was evident from four large tephras dated to c.850 cal year BP (Pindo), and 4600, 3600 and 1500 cal year BP (Baños). Examination of the chironomid and aquatic assemblages before and after the ash depositions revealed no shift in composition at Pindo, but a major change at Baños occurred after the last event around 1500 cal year BP. Chironomids at Baños changed from an assemblage dominated by Pseudochironomus and Polypedilum nubifer-type to Cricotopus/Paratrichocladius type-II, and such a dominance lasted for approximately 380 years. We suggest that, despite potential changes in the water chemistry, the major effect on the chironomid community resulted from the thickness of the tephra being deposited, which acted to shallow the water body beyond a depth threshold. Changes in the aquatic flora and fauna at the base of the trophic chain can promote cascade effects that may deteriorate the ecosystem, especially when already influenced by human activities, such as deforestation and dams, which is frequent in the high Andes

    Co-opetition models for governing professional football

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    In recent years, models for co-creating value in a business-to-business context have often been examined with the aim of studying the strategies implemented by and among organisations for competitive and co-operative purposes. The traditional concepts of competition and co-operation between businesses have now evolved, both in terms of the sector in which the businesses operate and in terms of the type of goods they produce. Many researchers have, in recent times, investigated the determinants that can influence the way in which the model of co-opetition can be applied to the football world. Research interest lies in the particular features of what makes a good football. In this paper, the aim is to conduct an analysis of the rules governing the “football system”, while also looking at the determinants of the demand function within football entertainment. This entails applying to football match management the co-opetition model, a recognised model that combines competition and co-operation with the view of creating and distributing value. It can, therefore, be said that, for a spectator, watching sport is an experience of high suspense, and this suspense, in turn, depends upon the degree of uncertainty in the outcome. It follows that the rules ensuring that both these elements can be satisfied are a fertile ground for co-operation between clubs, as it is in the interest of all stakeholders to offer increasingly more attractive football, in comparison with other competing products. Our end purpose is to understand how co-opetition can be achieved within professional football

    Fluctuations in granular gases

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    A driven granular material, e.g. a vibrated box full of sand, is a stationary system which may be very far from equilibrium. The standard equilibrium statistical mechanics is therefore inadequate to describe fluctuations in such a system. Here we present numerical and analytical results concerning energy and injected power fluctuations. In the first part we explain how the study of the probability density function (pdf) of the fluctuations of total energy is related to the characterization of velocity correlations. Two different regimes are addressed: the gas driven at the boundaries and the homogeneously driven gas. In a granular gas, due to non-Gaussianity of the velocity pdf or lack of homogeneity in hydrodynamics profiles, even in the absence of velocity correlations, the fluctuations of total energy are non-trivial and may lead to erroneous conclusions about the role of correlations. In the second part of the chapter we take into consideration the fluctuations of injected power in driven granular gas models. Recently, real and numerical experiments have been interpreted as evidence that the fluctuations of power injection seem to satisfy the Gallavotti-Cohen Fluctuation Relation. We will discuss an alternative interpretation of such results which invalidates the Gallavotti-Cohen symmetry. Moreover, starting from the Liouville equation and using techniques from large deviation theory, the general validity of a Fluctuation Relation for power injection in driven granular gases is questioned. Finally a functional is defined using the Lebowitz-Spohn approach for Markov processes applied to the linear inelastic Boltzmann equation relevant to describe the motion of a tracer particle. Such a functional results to be different from injected power and to satisfy a Fluctuation Relation.Comment: 40 pages, 18 figure

    Engineering hemoglobin to enable homogenous PEGylation without modifying protein functionality

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    In order to infuse hemoglobin into the vasculature as an oxygen therapeutic or blood substitute, it is necessary to increase the size of the molecule to enhance vascular retention. This aim can be achieved by PEGylation. However, using non-specific conjugation methods creates heterogenous mixtures and alters protein function. Site-specific PEGylation at the naturally reactive thiol on human hemoglobin (βCys93) alters hemoglobin oxygen binding affinity and increases its autooxidation rate. In order to avoid this issue, new reactive thiol residues were therefore engineered at sites distant to the heme group and the α/β dimer/dimer interface. The two mutants were βCys93Ala/αAla19Cys and βCys93Ala/βAla13Cys. Gel electrophoresis, size exclusion chromatography and mass spectrometry revealed efficient PEGylation at both αAla19Cys and βAla13Cys, with over 80% of the thiols PEGylated in the case of αAla19Cys. For both mutants there was no significant effect on the oxygen affinity or the cooperativity of oxygen binding. PEGylation at αAla19Cys had the additional benefit of decreasing the rates of autoxidation and heme release, properties that have been considered contributory factors to the adverse clinical side effects exhibited by previous hemoglobin based oxygen carriers. PEGylation at αAla19Cys may therefore be a useful component of future clinical products

    Possibilities for the future of global mental health: a scenario planning approach.

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    BACKGROUND: Global mental health is a widely used term describing initiatives in policies, research and practice to improve the mental health of people worldwide. It has been gaining momentum over the last 10 years, reflected in increasing funding opportunities, training programmes, and publications. In light of the rising importance of global mental health and the various uncertainties about its future directions, this paper explores what the future may hold for global mental health in 30 years' time. METHOD: A scenario planning method was used, involving a workshop with experts from four continents and a range of backgrounds, including clinical and academic psychiatry, psychology, art and music therapy, service user advisory role, funder of global health research and post-graduate students. RESULTS: Six distinct scenarios that describe potential future situations were developed: universal standards for care; worldwide coordination of research; making use of diversity; focus on social factors; globalised care through technology; mental health as a currency in global politics. CONCLUSIONS: These scenarios consider different social, economic, scientific and technological drivers and focus on distinct aspects. Some reflect a global application of possible trends in mental health, whilst others apply general global developments to mental health care. They are not fixed forecasts, but instead may help to promote discussion and debate about further developments and decisions

    Functional Analysis of Retinitis Pigmentosa 2 (RP2) Protein Reveals Variable Pathogenic Potential of Disease-Associated Missense Variants

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    Genetic mutations are frequently associated with diverse phenotypic consequences, which limits the interpretation of the consequence of a variation in patients. Mutations in the retinitis pigmentosa 2 (RP2) gene are associated with X-linked RP, which is a phenotypically heterogenic form of retinal degeneration. The purpose of this study was to assess the functional consequence of disease-associated mutations in the RP2 gene using an in vivo assay. Morpholino-mediated depletion of rp2 in zebrafish resulted in perturbations in photoreceptor development and microphthalmia (small eye). Ultrastructural and immunofluorescence analyses revealed defective photoreceptor outer segment development and lack of expression of photoreceptor-specific proteins. The retinopathy phenotype could be rescued by expressing the wild-type human RP2 protein. Notably, the tested RP2 mutants exhibited variable degrees of rescue of rod versus cone photoreceptor development as well as microphthalmia. Our results suggest that RP2 plays a key role in photoreceptor development and maintenance in zebrafish and that the clinical heterogeneity associated with RP2 mutations may, in part, result from its potentially distinct functional relevance in rod versus cone photoreceptors

    Lattice Boltzmann simulations of soft matter systems

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    This article concerns numerical simulations of the dynamics of particles immersed in a continuum solvent. As prototypical systems, we consider colloidal dispersions of spherical particles and solutions of uncharged polymers. After a brief explanation of the concept of hydrodynamic interactions, we give a general overview over the various simulation methods that have been developed to cope with the resulting computational problems. We then focus on the approach we have developed, which couples a system of particles to a lattice Boltzmann model representing the solvent degrees of freedom. The standard D3Q19 lattice Boltzmann model is derived and explained in depth, followed by a detailed discussion of complementary methods for the coupling of solvent and solute. Colloidal dispersions are best described in terms of extended particles with appropriate boundary conditions at the surfaces, while particles with internal degrees of freedom are easier to simulate as an arrangement of mass points with frictional coupling to the solvent. In both cases, particular care has been taken to simulate thermal fluctuations in a consistent way. The usefulness of this methodology is illustrated by studies from our own research, where the dynamics of colloidal and polymeric systems has been investigated in both equilibrium and nonequilibrium situations.Comment: Review article, submitted to Advances in Polymer Science. 16 figures, 76 page

    A Measurement of Rb using a Double Tagging Method

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    The fraction of Z to bbbar events in hadronic Z decays has been measured by the OPAL experiment using the data collected at LEP between 1992 and 1995. The Z to bbbar decays were tagged using displaced secondary vertices, and high momentum electrons and muons. Systematic uncertainties were reduced by measuring the b-tagging efficiency using a double tagging technique. Efficiency correlations between opposite hemispheres of an event are small, and are well understood through comparisons between real and simulated data samples. A value of Rb = 0.2178 +- 0.0011 +- 0.0013 was obtained, where the first error is statistical and the second systematic. The uncertainty on Rc, the fraction of Z to ccbar events in hadronic Z decays, is not included in the errors. The dependence on Rc is Delta(Rb)/Rb = -0.056*Delta(Rc)/Rc where Delta(Rc) is the deviation of Rc from the value 0.172 predicted by the Standard Model. The result for Rb agrees with the value of 0.2155 +- 0.0003 predicted by the Standard Model.Comment: 42 pages, LaTeX, 14 eps figures included, submitted to European Physical Journal
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