A dimeric iron(II) complex, trans-[Fe2(CH3COO)4(L1)2] (1), and a trinuclear iron(II) complex, [Fe3(CH3COO)4(H2O)4(L2)] (2), were studied as potential dye-sensitised solar cell materials. The structures of both complexes were deduced by a combination of instrumental analyses and molecular modelling. Variable-temperature magnetic susceptibility data suggested that 1 was made up of 56.8% high-spin (HS) and 43.2% low-spin (LS) Fe(II) atoms at 294 K and has a moderate antiferromagnetic interaction (J=-81.2 cm(-1)) between the two Fe(II) centres, while 2 was made up of 27.7% HS and 72.3% LS Fe(II) atoms at 300 K. The optical band gaps (Eo) for 1 were 1.9 eV (from absorption spectrum) and 2.2 eV (from fluorescence spectrum), electrochemical bandgap (Ee) was 0.83 eV, excited state lifetime (τ) was 0.67 ns, and formal redox potential (E'(FeIII/FeII)) was +0.63 V. The corresponding values for 2 were 3.5 eV (from absorption spectrum), 1.8 eV (from fluorescence spectrum), 0.69 eV, 2.8 ns, and +0.41 V.
The standard artificial bee colony (ABC) algorithm involves exploration and exploitation processes which need to be balanced for enhanced performance. This paper proposes a new modified ABC algorithm named JA-ABC5 to enhance convergence speed and improve the ability to reach the global optimum by balancing exploration and exploitation processes. New stages have been proposed at the earlier stages of the algorithm to increase the exploitation process. Besides that, modified mutation equations have also been introduced in the employed and onlooker-bees phases to balance the two processes. The performance of JA-ABC5 has been analyzed on 27 commonly used benchmark functions and tested to optimize the reactive power optimization problem. The performance results have clearly shown that the newly proposed algorithm has outperformed other compared algorithms in terms of convergence speed and global optimum achievement.
An experimental as well as numerical investigation was conducted on the melting/solidification processes of a stationary phase change material (PCM) in a shell around a finned-tube heat exchanger system. The PCM was stored in the horizontal annular space between a shell and finned-tube where distilled water was employed as the heat transfer fluid (HTF). The focus of this study was on the behavior of PCM for storage (charging or melting) and removal (discharging or solidification), as well as the effect of flow rate on the charged and discharged solar thermal energy. The impact of the Reynolds number was determined and the results were compared with each other to reveal the changes in amount of stored thermal energy with the variation of heat transfer fluid flow rates. The results showed that, by increasing the Reynolds number from 1000 to 2000, the total melting time decreases by 58%. The process of solidification also will speed up with increasing Reynolds number in the discharging process. The results also indicated that the fluctuation of gradient temperature decreased and became smooth with increasing Reynolds number. As a result, by increasing the Reynolds number in the charging process, the theoretical efficiency rises.
Numerical simulation of a geothermal reservoir, modelled as a bottom-heated square box, filled with water-CO2 mixture is presented in this work. Furthermore, results for two limiting cases of a reservoir filled with either pure water or CO2 are presented. Effects of different parameters including CO2 concentration as well as reservoir pressure and temperature on the overall performance of the system are investigated. It has been noted that, with a fixed reservoir pressure and temperature, any increase in CO2 concentration leads to better performance, that is, stronger convection and higher heat transfer rates. With a fixed CO2 concentration, however, the reservoir pressure and temperature can significantly affect the overall heat transfer and flow rate from the reservoir. Details of such variations are documented and discussed in the present paper.
This paper introduces a novel multiobjective approach for capacity benefit margin (CBM) assessment taking into account tie-line reliability of interconnected systems. CBM is the imperative information utilized as a reference by the load-serving entities (LSE) to estimate a certain margin of transfer capability so that a reliable access to generation through interconnected system could be attained. A new Pareto-based evolutionary programming (EP) technique is used to perform a simultaneous determination of CBM for all areas of the interconnected system. The selection of CBM at the Pareto optimal front is proposed to be performed by referring to a heuristic ranking index that takes into account system loss of load expectation (LOLE) in various conditions. Eventually, the power transfer based available transfer capability (ATC) is determined by considering the firm and nonfirm transfers of CBM. A comprehensive set of numerical studies are conducted on the modified IEEE-RTS79 and the performance of the proposed method is numerically investigated in detail. The main advantage of the proposed technique is in terms of flexibility offered to an independent system operator in selecting an appropriate solution of CBM simultaneously for all areas.
Protocorm-like bodies (PLBs) of Brassidium Shooting Star orchid were successfully cryopreserved using droplet-vitrification method. Vitrification based cryopreservation protocol is comprised of preculture, osmoprotection, cryoprotection, cooling, rewarming, and growth recovery and each and every step contributes to the achievement of successful cryopreservation. In order to reveal the lethal and nonlethal damage produced by cryopreservation, histological observation, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and biochemical analysis were carried out in both cryopreserved and noncryopreserved PLBs of Brassidium Shooting Star orchid comparing with the control PLBs stock culture. Histological and scanning electron microscopy analyses displayed structural changes in cryopreserved PLBs due to the impact of cryoinjury during exposure to liquid nitrogen. Total soluble protein significantly increased throughout the dehydration process and the highest value was achieved when PLBs were stored in liquid nitrogen. Ascorbate peroxidase (APX) and catalase (CAT) showed the highest enzyme activities in both dehydration and cryostorage treatments indicating that stress level of PLBs was high during these stages.
This paper presents an approach of identifying prosthetic knee movements through pattern recognition of mechanical responses at the internal socket's wall. A quadrilateral double socket was custom made and instrumented with two force sensing resistors (FSR) attached to specific anterior and posterior sites of the socket's wall. A second setup was established by attaching three piezoelectric sensors at the anterior distal, anterior proximal, and posterior sites. Gait cycle and locomotion movements such as stair ascent and sit to stand were adopted to characterize the validity of the technique. FSR and piezoelectric outputs were measured with reference to the knee angle during each phase. Piezoelectric sensors could identify the movement of midswing and terminal swing, pre-full standing, pull-up at gait, sit to stand, and stair ascent. In contrast, FSR could estimate the gait cycle stance and swing phases and identify the pre-full standing at sit to stand. FSR showed less variation during sit to stand and stair ascent to sensitively represent the different movement states. The study highlighted the capacity of using in-socket sensors for knee movement identification. In addition, it validated the efficacy of the system and warrants further investigation with more amputee subjects and different sockets types.
Software birthmark is a unique quality of software to detect software theft. Comparing birthmarks of software can tell us whether a program or software is a copy of another. Software theft and piracy are rapidly increasing problems of copying, stealing, and misusing the software without proper permission, as mentioned in the desired license agreement. The estimation of birthmark can play a key role in understanding the effectiveness of a birthmark. In this paper, a new technique is presented to evaluate and estimate software birthmark based on the two most sought-after properties of birthmarks, that is, credibility and resilience. For this purpose, the concept of soft computing such as probabilistic and fuzzy computing has been taken into account and fuzzy logic is used to estimate properties of birthmark. The proposed fuzzy rule based technique is validated through a case study and the results show that the technique is successful in assessing the specified properties of the birthmark, its resilience and credibility. This, in turn, shows how much effort will be required to detect the originality of the software based on its birthmark.
A statistical machine learning indicator, ACOustic, is proposed to evaluate the exploration behavior in the iterations of ant colony optimization algorithms. This idea is inspired by the behavior of some parasites in their mimicry to the queens' acoustics of their ant hosts. The parasites' reaction results from their ability to indicate the state of penetration. The proposed indicator solves the problem of robustness that results from the difference of magnitudes in the distance's matrix, especially when combinatorial optimization problems with rugged fitness landscape are applied. The performance of the proposed indicator is evaluated against the existing indicators in six variants of ant colony optimization algorithms. Instances for travelling salesman problem and quadratic assignment problem are used in the experimental evaluation. The analytical results showed that the proposed indicator is more informative and more robust.
Catharanthus roseus (L.) known as Madagascar periwinkle (MP) is a legendary medicinal plant mostly because of possessing two invaluable antitumor terpenoid indole alkaloids (TIAs), vincristine and vinblastine. The plant has also high aesthetic value as an evergreen ornamental that yields prolific blooms of splendid colors. The plant possesses yet another unique characteristic as an amiable experimental host for the maintenance of the smallest bacteria found on earth, the phytoplasmas and spiroplasmas, and serves as a model for their study. Botanical information with respect to synonyms, vernacular names, cultivars, floral morphology, and reproduction adds to understanding of the plant while the geography and ecology of periwinkle illustrate the organism's ubiquity. Good agronomic practices ensure generous propagation of healthy plants that serve as a source of bioactive compounds and multitudinous horticultural applications. The correlation between genetic diversity, variants, and TIA production exists. MP is afflicted with a whole range of diseases that have to be properly managed. The ethnobotanical significance of MP is exemplified by its international usage as a traditional remedy for abundant ailments and not only for cancer. TIAs are present only in micro quantities in the plant and are highly poisonous per se rendering a challenge for researchers to increase yield and reduce toxicity.
A psychovisual experiment prescribes the quantization values in image compression. The quantization process is used as a threshold of the human visual system tolerance to reduce the amount of encoded transform coefficients. It is very challenging to generate an optimal quantization value based on the contribution of the transform coefficient at each frequency order. The psychovisual threshold represents the sensitivity of the human visual perception at each frequency order to the image reconstruction. An ideal contribution of the transform at each frequency order will be the primitive of the psychovisual threshold in image compression. This research study proposes a psychovisual threshold on the large discrete cosine transform (DCT) image block which will be used to automatically generate the much needed quantization tables. The proposed psychovisual threshold will be used to prescribe the quantization values at each frequency order. The psychovisual threshold on the large image block provides significant improvement in the quality of output images. The experimental results on large quantization tables from psychovisual threshold produce largely free artifacts in the visual output image. Besides, the experimental results show that the concept of psychovisual threshold produces better quality image at the higher compression rate than JPEG image compression.
Improper use of urea may cause environmental pollution through NH3 volatilization and NO3 (-) leaching from urea. Clinoptilolite zeolite and compost could be used to control N loss from urea by controlling NH4 (+) and NO3 (-) release from urea. Soil incubation and leaching experiments were conducted to determine the effects of clinoptilolite zeolite and compost on controlling NH4 (+) and NO3 (-) losses from urea. Bekenu Series soil (Typic Paleudults) was incubated for 30, 60, and 90 days. A soil leaching experiment was conducted for 30 days. Urea amended with clinoptilolite zeolite and compost significantly reduced NH4 (+) and NO3 (-) release from urea (soil incubation study) compared with urea alone, thus reducing leaching of these ions. Ammonium and NO3 (-) leaching losses during the 30 days of the leaching experiment were highest in urea alone compared with urea with clinoptilolite zeolite and compost treatments. At 30 days of the leaching experiment, NH4 (+) retention in soil with urea amended with clinoptilolite zeolite and compost was better than that with urea alone. These observations were because of the high pH, CEC, and other chemical properties of clinoptilolite zeolite and compost. Urea can be amended with clinoptilolite zeolite and compost to improve NH4 (+) and NO3 (-) release from urea.
The ash of C. polygonoides (locally called balanza) was collected from Lakki Marwat, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan, and was utilized as biosorbent for methylene blue (MB) removal from aqueous solution. The ash was used as biosorbent without any physical or chemical treatment. The biosorbent was characterized by using various techniques such as Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The particle size and surface area were measured using particle size analyzer and Brunauer-Emmett-Teller equation (BET), respectively. The SEM and BET results expressed that the adsorbent has porous nature. Effects of various conditions such as initial concentration of methylene blue (MB), initial pH, contact time, dosage of biosorbent, and stirring rate were also investigated for the adsorption process. The rate of the adsorption of MB on biomass sample was fast, and equilibrium has been achieved within 1 hour. The kinetics of MB adsorption on biosorbent was studied by pseudo-first- and pseudo-second-order kinetic models and the pseudo-second-order has better mathematical fit with correlation coefficient value (R (2)) of 0.999. The study revealed that C. polygonoides ash proved to be an effective, alternative, inexpensive, and environmentally benign biosorbent for MB removal from aqueous solution.
Brain status information is captured by physiological electroencephalogram (EEG) signals, which are extensively used to study different brain activities. This study investigates the use of a new ensemble classifier to detect an epileptic seizure from compressed and noisy EEG signals. This noise-aware signal combination (NSC) ensemble classifier combines four classification models based on their individual performance. The main objective of the proposed classifier is to enhance the classification accuracy in the presence of noisy and incomplete information while preserving a reasonable amount of complexity. The experimental results show the effectiveness of the NSC technique, which yields higher accuracies of 90% for noiseless data compared with 85%, 85.9%, and 89.5% in other experiments. The accuracy for the proposed method is 80% when SNR=1 dB, 84% when SNR=5 dB, and 88% when SNR=10 dB, while the compression ratio (CR) is 85.35% for all of the datasets mentioned.
We examined the mediating role of behavioral coping strategies in the association between work-family conflict and psychological distress. In particular, we examined the two directions of work-family conflict, namely, work interference into family and family interference into work. Furthermore, two coping styles in this study were adaptive and maladaptive coping strategies. This cross-sectional study was conducted among 429 Malaysian working women using self-reported data. The results of mediational analysis in the present study showed that adaptive coping strategy does not significantly mediate the effect of work-family conflict on psychological distress. However, maladaptive coping strategies significantly mediate the effect of work-family conflict on psychological distress. These results show that adaptive coping strategies, which aimed to improve the stressful situation, are not effective in managing stressor such as work-family conflict. We found that experiencing interrole conflict steers employees toward frequent use of maladaptive coping strategies which in turn lead to psychological distress. Interventions targeted at improvement of coping skills which are according to individual's needs and expectation may help working women to balance work and family demands. The important issue is to keep in mind that effective coping strategies are to control the situations not to eliminate work-family conflict.
Most identity-based identification (IBI) schemes proposed in recent literature are built using pairing operations. This decreases efficiency due to the high operation costs of pairings. Furthermore, most of these IBI schemes are proven to be secure against impersonation under active and concurrent attacks using interactive assumptions such as the one-more RSA inversion assumption or the one-more discrete logarithm assumption, translating to weaker security guarantees due to the interactive nature of these assumptions. The Schnorr-IBI scheme was first proposed through the Kurosawa-Heng transformation from the Schnorr signature. It remains one of the fastest yet most secure IBI schemes under impersonation against passive attacks due to its pairing-free design. However, when required to be secure against impersonators under active and concurrent attacks, it deteriorates greatly in terms of efficiency due to the protocol having to be repeated multiple times. In this paper, we upgrade the Schnorr-IBI scheme to be secure against impersonation under active and concurrent attacks using only the classical discrete logarithm assumption. This translates to a higher degree of security guarantee with only some minor increments in operational costs. Furthermore, because the scheme operates without pairings, it still retains its efficiency and superiority when compared to other pairing-based IBI schemes.
High cation exchange capacity and organic matter content of crude humic substances from compost could be exploited to reduce ammonia loss from urea and to as well improve rice growth and soil chemical properties for efficient nutrients utilization in lowland rice cultivation. Close-dynamic air flow system was used to determine the effects of crude humic substances on ammonia volatilization. A pot experiment was conducted to determine the effects of crude humic substances on rice plant growth, nutrients uptake, nutrients recovery, and soil chemical properties using an acid soil mixed with three rates of crude humic substances (20, 40, and 60 g pot(-1)). Standard procedures were used to evaluate rice plant dry matter production, nutrients uptake, nutrients recovery, and soil chemical properties. Application of crude humic substances increased ammonia volatilization. However, the lowest rate of crude humic substances (20 g pot(-1)) significantly improved total dry matter, nutrients uptake, nutrients recovery, and soil nutrients availability compared with crude humic substances (40 and 60 g pot(-1)) and the normal fertilization. Apart from improving growth of rice plants, crude humic substances can be used to ameliorate acid soils in rice cultivation. The findings of this study are being validated in our ongoing field trials.
Galantamine hydrobromide is formulated in tablets and capsules prescribed through oral delivery for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease. However, oral delivery of drugs can cause severe side effects such as nausea, vomiting, and gastrointestinal disturbance. Transdermal delivery of galantamine hydrobromide could avoid these unwanted side effects. In this work, galantamine hydrobromide was formulated in gel drug reservoir which was then fabricated in the transdermal patch. The in vitro drug release studies revealed that the drug release from the donor chamber to receptor chamber of Franz diffusion cell was affected by the amount of polymer, amount of neutralizer, amount of drug, types of permeation enhancer, and amount of permeation enhancer. Visual observations of the gels showed that all formulated gels are translucent, homogeneous, smooth, and stable. These gels have pH in the suitable range for skin. The gel also showed high drug content uniformity. Hence, this formulation can be further used in the preparation of transdermal patch drug delivery system.