2,939 research outputs found

    Componentwise accurate fluid queue computations using doubling algorithms

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    Markov-modulated fluid queues are popular stochastic processes frequently used for modelling real-life applications. An important performance measure to evaluate in these applications is their steady-state behaviour, which is determined by the stationary density. Computing it requires solving a (nonsymmetric) M-matrix algebraic Riccati equation, and indeed computing the stationary density is the most important application of this class of equations. Xue et al. (Numer Math 120:671–700, 2012) provided a componentwise first-order perturbation analysis of this equation, proving that the solution can be computed to high relative accuracy even in the smallest entries, and suggested several algorithms for computing it. An important step in all proposed algorithms is using so-called triplet representations, which are special representations for M-matrices that allow for a high-accuracy variant of Gaussian elimination, the GTH-like algorithm. However, triplet representations for all the M-matrices needed in the algorithm were not found explicitly. This can lead to an accuracy loss that prevents the algorithms from converging in the componentwise sense. In this paper, we focus on the structured doubling algorithm, the most efficient among the proposed methods in Xue et al., and build upon their results, providing (i) explicit and cancellation-free expressions for the needed triplet representations, allowing the algorithm to be performed in a really cancellation-free fashion; (ii) an algorithm to evaluate the final part of the computation to obtain the stationary density; and (iii) a componentwise error analysis for the resulting algorithm, the first explicit one for this class of algorithms. We also present numerical results to illustrate the accuracy advantage of our method over standard (normwise-accurate) algorithms. © 2014, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg

    CBE Clima Tool: a free and open-source web application for climate analysis tailored to sustainable building design

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    Buildings that are designed specifically to respond to the local climate can be more comfortable, energy-efficient, and with a lower environmental impact. However, there are many social, cultural, and economic obstacles that might prevent the wide adoption of designing climate-adapted buildings. One of the said obstacles can be removed by enabling practitioners to easily access and analyse local climate data. The CBE Clima Tool (Clima) is a free and open-source web application that offers easy access to publicly available weather files (in EPW format) specifically created for building energy simulation and design. It provides a series of interactive visualization of the variables therein contained and several derived ones. It is aimed at students, educators, and practitioners in the architecture and engineering fields. Since its launch has been consistently recording over 3000 monthly unique users from over 70 countries worldwide, both in professional and educational settings.Comment: Submitted to Software

    Movement Behavior and Health Outcomes among Sedentary Adults: A Cross-Sectional Study

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    Background: Sedentary behavior, which is highly prevalent among office workers, is associated with multiple health disorders, including those of the musculoskeletal and cardiometabolic systems. Although prior studies looked at postures or physical activity during work or leisure time, few analyzed both posture and movement throughout the entire day. Objective: This cross-sectional pilot study examined the movement behavior of sedentary office workers during both work and leisure time to explore its association with musculoskeletal discomfort (MSD) and cardiometabolic health indicators. Methods: Twenty-six participants completed a survey and wore a thigh-based inertial measuring unit (IMU) to quantify the time spent in different postures, the number of transitions between postures, and the step count during work and leisure time. A heart rate monitor and ambulatory blood pressure cuff were worn to quantify cardiometabolic measures. The associations between movement behavior, MSD, and cardiometabolic health indicators were evaluated. Results: The number of transitions differed significantly between those with and without MSD. Correlations were found between MSD, time spent sitting, and posture transitions. Posture transitions had negative correlations with body mass index and heart rate. Conclusions: Although no single behavior was highly correlated with health outcomes, these correlations suggest that a combination of increasing standing time, walking time, and the number of transitions between postures during both work and leisure time was associated with positive musculoskeletal and cardiometabolic health indicators among sedentary office workers and should be considered in future research

    Early markers of angiogenesis and ischemia during bowel conduit neovascularization

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    Background Bowel flaps are a good and reliable method to restore the continuity of the aerodigestive tract. Radiated fields, contaminated recipient sites, or depleted recipient vessels may increase the risk for ischemic injury after transfer. During ischemic events, we believe that bowel conduits with serosa have a delayed neovascularization process at its new recipient site. We conducted an ischemia/reperfusion murine model to understand the difference among bowel conduits with and without serosa. Materials and Methods Two groups of rats were compared: control group (jejunal conduit with serosa) and a target group (jejunal conduit without serosa). These conduits were harvested from the peritoneal cavity and transferred into a subcutaneous pocket. After 72 hours of transfer and pedicle ligation, histological changes related to ischemia/reperfusion were assessed. In addition, tissue markers of angiogenesis (CD34), ischemia (lactate dehydrogenase [LDH]), and inflammation (interleukin [IL]-1β and IL-6) were analyzed. Results Two groups (n = 20) of male rats were analyzed. Histology showed intact jejunal mucosa in the target group. The control group showed decreased number of mucin, globet cells, decreased height, and fragmentation of villi with the absence of intestinal glands. Markers of angiogenesis (CD34) were higher in the target group. In addition, markers of ischemia (LDH) (p = 0.0045) and inflammation (IL-1b, p = 0.0008, and IL-6, p = 0.0008) were significantly lower in the target group as compared with the control group. Conclusions In circumstances in which the recipient site does not offer an adequate and healthy bed or a vascular insult occurs, bowel flaps with less amount of serosa may be able to neovascularize faster thereby increasing its chances of survival
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