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Open AccessArticle
Time-Resolved Characterization of Dynamic Tribochemical Processes for Dicationic Imidazolium Ionic Liquid
Lubricants 2017, 5(3), 27; doi:10.3390/lubricants5030027 (registering DOI) -
Abstract
Dynamic tribochemical processes for dicationic ionic liquid containing a geminal imidazolium cation head group bridged by a poly(ethylene glycol) and a bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide anion were studied using time-resolved mechanically stimulated gas emission mass-spectrometry (MSGE-MS). In comparison with similar monocationic imidazolium ionic liquids with short
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Dynamic tribochemical processes for dicationic ionic liquid containing a geminal imidazolium cation head group bridged by a poly(ethylene glycol) and a bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide anion were studied using time-resolved mechanically stimulated gas emission mass-spectrometry (MSGE-MS). In comparison with similar monocationic imidazolium ionic liquids with short alkyl or long polyether side chains, the dicationic ionic liquid had a lower coefficient of friction on Ti6Al4V alloy and smoother behavior. The analysis of volatile decomposition products suggested multiple tribochemical reactions in which both anionic and cationic moieties are involved. The tribochemical degradation of cations was mainly through the detachment of the side and bridging chains from the imidazolium head groups. The absence of volatile products containing nitrogen implies that the imidazole group remained unchanged. Hydrogen and water desorption were attributed to the reactions of hydrogen fluoride being a product of anion degradation with titanium and titanium oxide, respectively. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Isogroup Selection to Optimize Biocontrol Increases Cannibalism in Omnivorous (Zoophytophagous) Bugs
Insects 2017, 8(3), 74; doi:10.3390/insects8030074 (registering DOI) -
Abstract
Zoophytophagous insects can substitute animals for plant resources when prey is scarce. Many arthropods feed on conspecifics to survive in these conditions. An individual’s tendency for cannibalism may depend on its genotype along with its diet specialization, in interaction with the availability of
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Zoophytophagous insects can substitute animals for plant resources when prey is scarce. Many arthropods feed on conspecifics to survive in these conditions. An individual’s tendency for cannibalism may depend on its genotype along with its diet specialization, in interaction with the availability of alternative food resources. We compared two isogroup lines of the zoophytophagous mullein bug, either specialized on animal or on plant diets, that were generated to improve biocontrol. We predicted that: (1) bugs from the prey-specialized line would show higher levels of cannibalism than bugs from the pollen-specialized line, and (2) both lines would decrease cannibalism levels in the presence of their preferred resource. Under laboratory conditions, large nymphal instars had 24 hours to feed on smaller instars, in the absence of additional resources, or with either spider mites or pollen present. Cannibalism was reduced by the availability of both prey and pollen, although prey had a lower effect than pollen. The intensity of cannibalism was always higher in the prey-specialized line than in the pollen-specialized line, regardless of the availability of supplemented resources. The pollen-specialized line had decreased cannibalism levels only when pollen was available. These results indicate that cannibalism is a potentially regulating force in the prey-specialized line, but not in the pollen-specialized line. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Responses of Crop Pests and Natural Enemies to Wildflower Borders Depends on Functional Group
Insects 2017, 8(3), 73; doi:10.3390/insects8030073 (registering DOI) -
Abstract
Increased homogeneity of agricultural landscapes in the last century has led to a loss of biodiversity and ecosystem services. However, management practices such as wildflower borders offer supplementary resources to many beneficial arthropods. There is evidence that these borders can increase beneficial arthropod
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Increased homogeneity of agricultural landscapes in the last century has led to a loss of biodiversity and ecosystem services. However, management practices such as wildflower borders offer supplementary resources to many beneficial arthropods. There is evidence that these borders can increase beneficial arthropod abundance, including natural enemies of many pests. However, this increase in local habitat diversity can also have effects on pest populations, and these effects are not well-studied. In this study, we investigated how wildflower borders affect both natural enemies and pests within an adjacent strawberry crop. Significantly more predators were captured in strawberry plantings with wildflower borders versus plantings without wildflowers, but this effect depended on sampling method. Overall, herbivore populations were lower in plots with a wildflower border; however, responses to wildflower borders varied across specific pest groups. Densities of Lygus lineolaris (Tarnished Plant Bug), a generalist pest, increased significantly in plots that had a border, while Stelidota geminata (Strawberry Sap Beetle) decreased in strawberry fields with a wildflower border. These results suggest that wildflower borders may support the control of some pest insects; however, if the pest is a generalist and can utilize the resources of the wildflower patch, their populations may increase within the crop. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Effects of Laser Offset and Hybrid Welding on Microstructure and IMC in Fe–Al Dissimilar Welding
Metals 2017, 7(8), 282; doi:10.3390/met7080282 (registering DOI) -
Abstract
Welding between Fe and Al alloys is difficult because of a significant difference in thermal properties and poor mutual solid-state solubility. This affects the weld microstructure and causes the formation of brittle intermetallic compounds (IMCs). The present study aims to explore the weld
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Welding between Fe and Al alloys is difficult because of a significant difference in thermal properties and poor mutual solid-state solubility. This affects the weld microstructure and causes the formation of brittle intermetallic compounds (IMCs). The present study aims to explore the weld microstructure and those compounds over two different technologies: the laser offset welding and the hybrid laser-MIG (Metal inert gas) welding. The former consists of focusing the laser beam on the top surface of one of the two plates at a certain distance (offset) from the interfaces. Such a method minimizes the interaction between elevated temperature liquid phases. The latter combines the laser with a MIG/MAG arc, which helps in bridging the gap and stabilizing the weld pool. AISI 316 stainless steel and AA5754 aluminum alloy were welded together in butt configuration. The microstructure was characterized and the microhardness was measured. The energy dispersive spectroscopy/X-ray Diffraction (EDS/XRD) analysis revealed the composition of the intermetallic compounds. Laser offset welding significantly reduced the content of cracks and promoted a narrower intermetallic layer. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Assessing Risks from Cyclones for Human Lives and Livelihoods in the Coastal Region of Bangladesh
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(8), 831; doi:10.3390/ijerph14080831 (registering DOI) -
Abstract
As a disaster prone country, Bangladesh is regularly hit by natural hazards, including devastating cyclones, such as in 1970, 1991 and 2007. Although the number of cyclones’ fatalities reduced from 0.3 million in 1970 to a few thousand or fewer in recent events,
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As a disaster prone country, Bangladesh is regularly hit by natural hazards, including devastating cyclones, such as in 1970, 1991 and 2007. Although the number of cyclones’ fatalities reduced from 0.3 million in 1970 to a few thousand or fewer in recent events, loss of lives and impact on livelihoods remains a concern. It depends on the meteorological characteristics of cyclone and the general vulnerability and capacity of the exposed population. In that perspective, a spatially explicit risk assessment is an essential step towards targeted disaster risk reduction. This study aims at analyzing the spatial variation of the different factors contributing to the risk for coastal communities at regional scale, including the distribution of the hazards, exposure, vulnerability and capacity. An exploratory factor analysis method is used to map vulnerability contrasts between local administrative units. Indexing and ranking using geospatial techniques are used to produce maps of exposure, hazard, vulnerability, capacities and risk. Results show that vulnerable populations and exposed areas are distributed along the land sea boundary, islands and major inland rivers. The hazard, assessed from the density of historical cyclone paths, is highest in the southwestern part of the coast. Whereas cyclones shelters are shown to properly serve the most vulnerable populations as priority evacuation centers, the overall pattern of capacity accounting for building quality and road network shows a more complex pattern. Resultant risk maps also provide a reasonable basis from which to take further structural measures to minimize loss of lives in the upcoming cyclones. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Evaluating the Effectiveness of Implementing a More Severe Drunk-Driving Law in China: Findings from Two Open Access Data Sources
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(8), 832; doi:10.3390/ijerph14080832 (registering DOI) -
Abstract
In 2011, China implemented a more severe drunk-driving law. This study evaluated the effectiveness of the law on road traffic morbidity and mortality attributed to alcohol use. Data were from two open-access data sources, the Global Burden of Disease (GBD) 2015 update and
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In 2011, China implemented a more severe drunk-driving law. This study evaluated the effectiveness of the law on road traffic morbidity and mortality attributed to alcohol use. Data were from two open-access data sources, the Global Burden of Disease (GBD) 2015 update and police data. Poisson regression examined the significance of changes in morbidity and mortality. Large gaps in crude death estimates from road traffic crashes attributed to alcohol use emerged between the two data sources. For the GBD 2015 update, crude and age-standardized mortality displayed consistent trends between 1990 and 2015; age-standardized mortality per 100,000 persons increased from 5.71 in 1990 to 7.48 in 2005 and then continuously decreased down to 5.94 in 2015. Police data showed a decrease for crude mortality per 100,000 persons from 0.29 in 2006 to 0.15 in 2010 and then an increase to 0.19 in 2015. We conclude available data are inadequate to determine the effectiveness of the implementation of the more severe drunk-driving law in China since the two data sources present highly inconsistent results. Further effort is needed to tackle data inconsistencies and obtain reliable and accurate data on road traffic injury attributable to alcohol use in China. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
A Novel Single-Valued Neutrosophic Set Similarity Measure and Its Application in Multicriteria Decision-Making
Symmetry 2017, 9(8), 127; doi:10.3390/sym9080127 (registering DOI) -
Abstract
The single-valued neutrosophic set is a subclass of neutrosophic set, and has been proposed in recent years. An important application for single-valued neutrosophic sets is to solve multicriteria decision-making problems. The key to using neutrosophic sets in decision-making applications is to make a
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The single-valued neutrosophic set is a subclass of neutrosophic set, and has been proposed in recent years. An important application for single-valued neutrosophic sets is to solve multicriteria decision-making problems. The key to using neutrosophic sets in decision-making applications is to make a similarity measure between single-valued neutrosophic sets. In this paper, a new method to measure the similarity between single-valued neutrosophic sets using Dempster–Shafer evidence theory is proposed, and it is applied in multicriteria decision-making. Finally, some examples are given to show the reasonable and effective use of the proposed method. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Automatic Mapping of Forest Stands Based on Three-Dimensional Point Clouds Derived from Terrestrial Laser-Scanning
Forests 2017, 8(8), 265; doi:10.3390/f8080265 (registering DOI) -
Abstract
Mapping of exact tree positions can be regarded as a crucial task of field work associated with forest monitoring, especially on intensive research plots. We propose a two-stage density clustering approach for the automatic mapping of tree positions, and an algorithm for automatic
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Mapping of exact tree positions can be regarded as a crucial task of field work associated with forest monitoring, especially on intensive research plots. We propose a two-stage density clustering approach for the automatic mapping of tree positions, and an algorithm for automatic tree diameter estimates based on terrestrial laser-scanning (TLS) point cloud data sampled under limited sighting conditions. We show that our novel approach is able to detect tree positions in a mixed and vertically structured stand with an overall accuracy of 91.6%, and with omission- and commission error of only 5.7% and 2.7% respectively. Moreover, we were able to reproduce the stand’s diameter in breast height (DBH) distribution, and to estimate single trees DBH with a mean average deviation of ±2.90 cm compared with tape measurements as reference. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
A Polar Fuzzy Control Scheme for Hybrid Power System Using Vehicle-To-Grid Technique
Energies 2017, 10(8), 1083; doi:10.3390/en10081083 (registering DOI) -
Abstract
A novel polar fuzzy (PF) control approach for a hybrid power system is proposed in this research. The proposed control scheme remedies the issues of system frequency and the continuity of demand supply caused by renewable sources’ uncertainties. The hybrid power system consists
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A novel polar fuzzy (PF) control approach for a hybrid power system is proposed in this research. The proposed control scheme remedies the issues of system frequency and the continuity of demand supply caused by renewable sources’ uncertainties. The hybrid power system consists of a wind turbine generator (WTG), solar photovoltaics (PV), a solar thermal power generator (STPG), a diesel engine generator (DEG), an aqua-electrolyzer (AE), an ultra-capacitor (UC), a fuel-cell (FC), and a flywheel (FW). Furthermore, due to the high cost of the battery energy storage system (BESS), a new idea of vehicle-to-grid (V2G) control is applied to use the battery of the electric vehicle (EV) as equivalent to large-scale energy storage units instead of small batteries to improve the frequency stability of the system. In addition, EV customers’ convenience is taken into account. A minimal-order observer is used to estimate the supply error. Then, the area control error (ACE) signal is calculated in terms of the estimated supply error and the frequency deviation. ACE is considered in the frequency domain. Two PF approaches are utilized in the intended system. The mission of each controller is to mitigate one frequency component of ACE. The responsibility for ACE compensation is shared among all parts of the system according to their speed of response. The performance of the proposed control scheme is compared to the conventional fuzzy logic control (FLC). The effectiveness and robustness of the proposed control technique are verified by numerical simulations under various scenarios. Full article

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