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### Grain refinement of DC cast magnesium alloys with intensive melt shearing

A new direct chill (DC) casting process, melt conditioned DC (MC-DC) process, has been developed for the production of high quality billets/slabs of light alloys by application of intensive melt shearing through a rotor-stator high shear device during the DC casting process. The rotor-stator high shear device provides intensive melt shearing to disperse the naturally occurring oxide films, and other inclusions, while creating a microscopic flow pattern to homogenize the temperature and composition fields in the sump. In this paper, we report the grain refining effect of intensive melt shearing in the MC-DC casting processing. Experimental results on DC casting of Mg-alloys with and without intensive melt shearing have demonstrated that the MC-DC casting process can produce magnesium alloy billets with significantly refined microstructure. Such grain refinement in the MC-DC casting process can be attributed to enhanced heterogeneous nucleation by dispersed naturally occurring oxide particles, increased nuclei survival rate in uniform temperature and compositional fields in the sump, and potential contribution from dendrite arm fragmentation

### Refining grain structure and porosity of an aluminium alloy with intensive melt shearing

The official published version of the article can be obtained at the link below.Intensive melt shearing was achieved using a twin-screw machine to condition an aluminium alloy prior to solidification. The results show that intensive melt shearing has a significant grain-refining effect. In addition, the intensive melt shearing reduces both the volume fraction and the size of porosity. It can reduce the density index from 10.50% to 2.87% and the average size of porosity in the samples solidified under partial vacuum from around 1 mm to 100 μm.Financial support was obtained from the EPSRC and the Technology Strategy Board

### Affine equivariant rank-weighted L-estimation of multivariate location

In the multivariate one-sample location model, we propose a class of flexible
robust, affine-equivariant L-estimators of location, for distributions invoking
affine-invariance of Mahalanobis distances of individual observations. An
involved iteration process for their computation is numerically illustrated.Comment: 16 pages, 4 figures, 6 table

### A More Precise Extraction of |V_{cb}| in HQEFT of QCD

The more precise extraction for the CKM matrix element |V_{cb}| in the heavy
quark effective field theory (HQEFT) of QCD is studied from both exclusive and
inclusive semileptonic B decays. The values of relevant nonperturbative
parameters up to order 1/m^2_Q are estimated consistently in HQEFT of QCD.
Using the most recent experimental data for B decay rates, |V_{cb}| is updated
to be |V_{cb}| = 0.0395 \pm 0.0011_{exp} \pm 0.0019_{th} from B\to D^{\ast} l
\nu decay and |V_{cb}| = 0.0434 \pm 0.0041_{exp} \pm 0.0020_{th} from B\to D l
\nu decay as well as |V_{cb}| = 0.0394 \pm 0.0010_{exp} \pm 0.0014_{th} from
inclusive B\to X_c l \nu decay.Comment: 7 pages, revtex, 4 figure

### $B_{(s)},D_{(s)} \to \pi, K, \eta, \rho, K^*, \omega, \phi$ Transition Form Factors and Decay Rates with Extraction of the CKM parameters $|V_{ub}|$, $|V_{cs}|$, $|V_{cd}|$

A systematic calculation for the transition form factors of heavy to light
mesons ($B,B_s,D,D_s \to \pi, K, \eta, \rho, K^*, \omega, \phi$) is carried out
by using light-cone sum rules in the framework of heavy quark effective field
theory. The heavy quark symmetry at the leading order of $1/m_Q$ expansion
enables us to reduce the independent wave functions and establish interesting
relations among form factors. Some relations hold for the whole region of
momentum transfer. The meson distribution amplitudes up to twist-4 including
the contributions from higher conformal spin partial waves and light meson mass
corrections are considered. The CKM matrix elements $|V_{ub}|$, $|V_{cs}|$ and
$|V_{cd}|$ are extracted from some relatively well-measured decay channels. A
detailed prediction for the branching ratios of heavy to light meson decays is
then presented. The resulting predictions for the semileptonic and radiative
decay rates of heavy to light mesons ($B,B_s,D,D_s \to \pi, K, \eta, \rho, K^*,
\omega, \phi$) are found to be compatible with the current experimental data
and can be tested by more precise experiments at B-factory, LHCb, BEPCII and
CLEOc.Comment: 23 pages, 32 figures, 25 tables,published version, minor corrections
and references adde

### Lifetime Difference and Endpoint effect in the Inclusive Bottom Hadron Decays

The lifetime differences of bottom hadrons are known to be properly explained
within the framework of heavy quark effective field theory(HQEFT) of QCD via
the inverse expansion of the dressed heavy quark mass. In general, the spectrum
around the endpoint region is not well behaved due to the invalidity of $1/m_Q$
expansion near the endpoint. The curve fitting method is adopted to treat the
endpoint behavior. It turns out that the endpoint effects are truly small and
the explanation on the lifetime differences in the HQEFT of QCD is then well
justified. The inclusion of the endpoint effects makes the prediction on the
lifetime differences and the extraction on the CKM matrix element $|V_{cb}|$
more reliable.Comment: 11 pages, Revtex, 10 figures, 6 tables, published versio

### Correlation effects in the ground state charge density of Mott-insulating NiO: a comparison of ab-initio calculations and high-energy electron diffraction measurements

Accurate high-energy electron diffraction measurements of structure factors
of NiO have been carried out to investigate how strong correlations in the Ni
3d shell affect electron charge density in the interior area of nickel ions and
whether the new ab-initio approaches to the electronic structure of strongly
correlated metal oxides are in accord with experimental observations. The
generalized gradient approximation (GGA) and the local spin density
approximation corrected by the Hubbard U term (LSDA+U) are found to provide the
closest match to experimental measurements. The comparison of calculated and
observed electron charge densities shows that correlations in the Ni 3d shell
suppress covalent bonding between the oxygen and nickel sublattices.Comment: 6 pages, LaTeX and 5 figures in the postscript forma

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