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Appl. Sci., Volume 5, Issue 3 (September 2015) – 32 articles , Pages 157-636

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Article
Critical Nodes Identification of Power Systems Based on Controllability of Complex Networks
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 622-636; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030622 - 22 Sep 2015
Cited by 18 | Viewed by 2558
Abstract
This paper proposes a new method for assessing the vulnerability of power systems based on the controllability theories of complex networks. A novel controllability index is established, taking into consideration the full controllability of the power systems, for identifying critical nodes. The network [...] Read more.
This paper proposes a new method for assessing the vulnerability of power systems based on the controllability theories of complex networks. A novel controllability index is established, taking into consideration the full controllability of the power systems, for identifying critical nodes. The network controllability model is used to calculate the minimum number of driver nodes (ND), which can solve the computable problems of the controllability of power systems. The proposed approach firstly applies the network controllability theories to research the power systems' vulnerability, which can not only effectively reveal the important nodes but also maintain full control of the power systems. Meanwhile, the method can also overcome the limitation of the hypothesis that the weight of each link or transmission line must be known compared with the existing literature. In addition, the power system is considered as a directed network and the power system model is also redefined. The proposed methodology is then used to identify critical nodes of the IEEE 118 and 300 bus system. The results show that the failure of the critical nodes can clearly increase ND and lead a significant driver node shift. Thus, the rationality and validity are verified. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Grid: Convergence and Interoperability)
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Article
A Study of Optical Design on 9× Zoom Ratio by Using a Compensating Liquid Lens
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 608-621; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030608 - 21 Sep 2015
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 3557
Abstract
This paper proposes using a liquid lens as a compensating lens and applying intermediate optics to achieve a 9× zoom ratio. The droplet shape and location of the liquid lens can be adjusted reversibly, enabling the focal length and position of the lens [...] Read more.
This paper proposes using a liquid lens as a compensating lens and applying intermediate optics to achieve a 9× zoom ratio. The droplet shape and location of the liquid lens can be adjusted reversibly, enabling the focal length and position of the lens to be tuned by varying the voltage applied to a set of electrodes. Therefore, liquid lenses can replace complex lenses to reduce the total length of optomechanical systems. The CODE V built-in optimization method was used to determine the optimal liquid lens parameters at various zoom ratios. Several general optical aberrations were considered. Compared with a standard intermediate optics system featuring 9× zoom and no compensating lens, the proposed lens improved the Petzval surface curvature (PTZ) and modulation transfer function (MTF). Simulation results revealed that the PTZ decreased 10.92% and the MTF increased 3988% in 40 1p/mm. Full article
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Article
Design of a Solenoid Actuator with a Magnetic Plunger for Miniaturized Segment Robots
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 595-607; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030595 - 18 Sep 2015
Cited by 16 | Viewed by 4128
Abstract
We develop a solenoid actuator with a ferromagnetic plunger to generate both rectilinear and turning motions of a multi-segmented robot. Each segment of the miniaturized robot is actuated by a pair of solenoids, and in-phase and out-of-phase actuations of the solenoid pair cause [...] Read more.
We develop a solenoid actuator with a ferromagnetic plunger to generate both rectilinear and turning motions of a multi-segmented robot. Each segment of the miniaturized robot is actuated by a pair of solenoids, and in-phase and out-of-phase actuations of the solenoid pair cause the linear and turning motions. The theoretical analysis on the actuation force by the solenoid with the magnetic plunger is implemented based on the Biot-Savart law. The optimal design parameters of the solenoid are determined to actuate a segmented body. We manufacture the miniaturized robot consisting of two segments and a pair of solenoids. Experiments are performed to measure the linear and angular displacements of the two-segmented robot for various frictional conditions. Full article
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Article
Enhanced Magnetoelectric Effect in Permendur/Pb(Zr0.52Ti0.48)O3 Laminated Magnetostrictive/Piezoelectric Composite
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 587-594; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030587 - 18 Sep 2015
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2227
Abstract
In this work, after investigating three typical magneto-electric (ME) composites, Permendur/Pb(Zr0.52Ti0.48)O3(PZT), Metglas/PZT, and Tefenol-D/PZT, with the same dimensions and different saturation magnetostriction and magnetic permeability, the most excellent ME performance is observed in the Permendur/PZT laminates, which [...] Read more.
In this work, after investigating three typical magneto-electric (ME) composites, Permendur/Pb(Zr0.52Ti0.48)O3(PZT), Metglas/PZT, and Tefenol-D/PZT, with the same dimensions and different saturation magnetostriction and magnetic permeability, the most excellent ME performance is observed in the Permendur/PZT laminates, which agrees well with the predicted results from the figure of merit. The low-frequency and resonance ME coefficients of Permendur/PZT composite are ~23.1 V/Oe.cm and ~309 V/Oe.cm at the optimal dc bias magnetic field of ~250 Oe, respectively. The strong ME effect of Permendur/PZT composite gives it potential in practical magnetic sensitive device applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ferroelectric Ceramics)
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Article
Design of a Stability Augmentation System for an Unmanned Helicopter Based on Adaptive Control Techniques
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 575-586; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030575 - 11 Sep 2015
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2543
Abstract
The task of control of unmanned helicopters is rather complicated in the presence of parametric uncertainties and measurement noises. This paper presents an adaptive model feedback control algorithm for an unmanned helicopter stability augmentation system. The proposed algorithm can achieve a guaranteed model [...] Read more.
The task of control of unmanned helicopters is rather complicated in the presence of parametric uncertainties and measurement noises. This paper presents an adaptive model feedback control algorithm for an unmanned helicopter stability augmentation system. The proposed algorithm can achieve a guaranteed model reference tracking performance and speed up the convergence rates of adjustable parameters, even when the plant parameters vary rapidly. Moreover, the model feedback strategy in the algorithm further contributes to the improvement in the control quality of the stability augmentation system in the case of low signal to noise ratios, mainly because the model feedback path is noise free. The effectiveness and superiority of the proposed algorithm are demonstrated through a series of tests. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Acoustic and Elastic Waves: Recent Trends in Science and Engineering)
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Article
Q-Switched Operation with Carbon-Based Saturable Absorbers in a Nd:YLF Laser
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 566-574; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030566 - 11 Sep 2015
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2095
Abstract
We have numerically studied the influence of the absorption modulation depth of carbon-based saturable absorbers (graphene and carbon nanotubes (CNTs)) on the Q-switched regime of a diode-pumped Nd:YLF laser. A short-length cavity was used with an end mirror on which CNTs or mono- [...] Read more.
We have numerically studied the influence of the absorption modulation depth of carbon-based saturable absorbers (graphene and carbon nanotubes (CNTs)) on the Q-switched regime of a diode-pumped Nd:YLF laser. A short-length cavity was used with an end mirror on which CNTs or mono- or bi-layer graphene were deposited, forming a saturable absorber mirror (SAM). Using a standard model, the generated energy per pulse was calculated, as well as the pulse duration and repetition rate. The results show that absorbers with higher modulation depths, i.e., graphene, deliver higher energy pulses at lower repetition rates. However, the pulse duration did not have a monotonic behavior and reaches a minimum for a given low value of the modulation depth typical of CNTs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diode-Pumped, Ultra-Short Pulse Lasers)
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Article
Intensity Correlation Analysis on Blue-Violet FemtosecondPulses from a Dispersion-Compensated GaInN Mode-LockedSemiconductor Laser Diode
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 555-565; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030555 - 10 Sep 2015
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2492
Abstract
We investigated the spectral and temporal characteristics of blue-violetfemtosecond optical pulses generated by a passively mode-locked GaInN laser diode ina dispersion-compensated external cavity. The output optical pulses at 400 nm wereanalyzed in detail by intensity auto- and cross-correlation measurements using secondharmonic generation on [...] Read more.
We investigated the spectral and temporal characteristics of blue-violetfemtosecond optical pulses generated by a passively mode-locked GaInN laser diode ina dispersion-compensated external cavity. The output optical pulses at 400 nm wereanalyzed in detail by intensity auto- and cross-correlation measurements using secondharmonic generation on the surface of a β-BaB2O4 crystal. The obtained results clarifiedwavelength-dependent chirp characteristics of the optical pulses. The analysis suggestedthat a large frequency shift due to saturation in the saturable absorber and gain sectionsplayed an important role in the generation of femtosecond optical pulses. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diode-Pumped, Ultra-Short Pulse Lasers)
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Article
Optical Cutting Interruption Sensor for Fiber Lasers
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 544-554; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030544 - 09 Sep 2015
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2809
Abstract
We report on an optical sensor system attached to a 4 kW fiber laser cutting machine to detect cutting interruptions. The sensor records the thermal radiation from the process zone with a modified ring mirror and optical filter arrangement, which is placed between [...] Read more.
We report on an optical sensor system attached to a 4 kW fiber laser cutting machine to detect cutting interruptions. The sensor records the thermal radiation from the process zone with a modified ring mirror and optical filter arrangement, which is placed between the cutting head and the collimator. The process radiation is sensed by a Si and InGaAs diode combination with the detected signals being digitalized with 20 kHz. To demonstrate the function of the sensor, signals arising during fusion cutting of 1 mm stainless steel and mild steel with and without cutting interruptions are evaluated and typical signatures derived. In the recorded signals the piercing process, the laser switch on and switch off point and waiting period are clearly resolved. To identify the cutting interruption, the signals of both Si and InGaAs diodes are high pass filtered and the signal fluctuation ranges being subsequently calculated. Introducing a correction factor, we identify that only in case of a cutting interruption the fluctuation range of the Si diode exceeds the InGaAs diode. This characteristic signature was successfully used to detect 80 cutting interruptions of 83 incomplete cuts (alpha error 3.6%) and system recorded no cutting interruption from 110 faultless cuts (beta error of 0). This particularly high detection rate in combination with the easy integration of the sensor, highlight its potential for cutting interruption detection in industrial applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fibre Lasers: From Underlying Science and Technology to Applications)
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Article
Microwave-Assisted Conversion of Levulinic Acid to γ-Valerolactone Using Low-Loaded Supported Iron Oxide Nanoparticles on Porous Silicates
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 532-543; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030532 - 09 Sep 2015
Cited by 21 | Viewed by 2675
Abstract
The microwave-assisted conversion of levulinic acid (LA) has been studied using low-loaded supported Fe-based catalysts on porous silicates. A very simple, productive, and highly reproducible continuous flow method has been used for the homogeneous deposition of metal oxide nanoparticles on the silicate supports. [...] Read more.
The microwave-assisted conversion of levulinic acid (LA) has been studied using low-loaded supported Fe-based catalysts on porous silicates. A very simple, productive, and highly reproducible continuous flow method has been used for the homogeneous deposition of metal oxide nanoparticles on the silicate supports. Formic acid was used as a hydrogen donating agent for the hydrogenation of LA to effectively replace high pressure H2 mostly reported for LA conversion. Moderate LA conversion was achieved in the case of non-noble metal-based iron oxide catalysts, with a significant potential for further improvements to compete with noble metal-based catalysts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nano-Catalysts and Their Applications)
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Article
Hybrid Energy Scheduling in a Renewable Micro Grid
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 516-531; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030516 - 08 Sep 2015
Cited by 18 | Viewed by 2518
Abstract
In this paper, we address the energy scheduling issue in a hybrid energy micro grid, which consists of photovoltaic (PV), wind power, combined heat and power (CHP), energy storage and electric vehicles (EVs). The optimal scheduling model of these power sources is presented [...] Read more.
In this paper, we address the energy scheduling issue in a hybrid energy micro grid, which consists of photovoltaic (PV), wind power, combined heat and power (CHP), energy storage and electric vehicles (EVs). The optimal scheduling model of these power sources is presented with consideration of the demand response. The objective function is minimum total operation costs, including gas cost, electric power purchase from the main grid and storage and EV charging-discharging costs. In the process of optimization, multi-team particle swarm optimization (MTPSO) is proposed, which uses units, groups and swarm information to update the velocity (position) with faster and more stable convergence. With simulation analysis, it is found that the proposed model is effective, and the presented MTPSO has a better global search ability than PSO. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Grid: Convergence and Interoperability)
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Review
Fundamentals of Highly Non-Degenerate Cascaded Four-Wave Mixing
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 485-515; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030485 - 07 Sep 2015
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 3023
Abstract
By crossing two intense ultrashort laser pulses with different colors in a transparent medium, like a simple piece of glass, a fan of multicolored broadband light pulses can be simultaneously generated. These newly generated pulses are emitted in several well-defined directions and can [...] Read more.
By crossing two intense ultrashort laser pulses with different colors in a transparent medium, like a simple piece of glass, a fan of multicolored broadband light pulses can be simultaneously generated. These newly generated pulses are emitted in several well-defined directions and can cover a broad spectral range, from the infrared to the ultraviolet and beyond. This beautiful phenomenon, first observed and described 15 years ago, is due to highly-nondegenerate cascaded four-wave mixing (cascaded FWM, or CFWM). Here, we present a review of our work on the generation and measurement of multicolored light pulses based on third-order nonlinearities in transparent solids, from the discovery and first demonstration of highly-nondegenerate CFWM, to the coherent synthesis of single-cycle pulses by superposition of the multicolored light pulses produced by CFWM. We will also present the development and main results of a dedicated 2.5-D nonlinear propagation model, i.e., with propagation occurring along a two-dimensional plane while assuming cylindrically symmetric pump beam profiles, capable of adequately describing noncollinear FWM and CFWM processes. A new method for the generation of femtosecond pulses in the deep-ultraviolet (DUV) based on FWM and CFWM will also be described. These experimental and theoretical results show that highly-nondegenerate third-order nonlinear optical processes are formally well understood and provide broader bandwidths than other nonlinear optical processes for the generation of ultrashort light pulses with wavelengths extending from the near-infrared to the deep-ultraviolet, which have many applications in science and technology. Full article
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Article
A Novel Rotary Piezoelectric Motor Using First Bending Hybrid Transducers
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 472-484; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030472 - 27 Aug 2015
Cited by 17 | Viewed by 3400
Abstract
We report a novel rotary piezoelectric motor using bending transducers in this work. Three transducers are used to drive a disk-shaped rotor together by the elliptical movements of their driving tips; these motions are produced by the hybrid of two first bending vibration [...] Read more.
We report a novel rotary piezoelectric motor using bending transducers in this work. Three transducers are used to drive a disk-shaped rotor together by the elliptical movements of their driving tips; these motions are produced by the hybrid of two first bending vibration modes. The proposed piezoelectric transducer has a simple structure as it only contains an aluminum alloy beam and four pieces of PZT plates. Symmetrical structure is the only necessary condition in the design process as it will ensure the resonance frequencies of the two orthogonal first bending modes are equal. Transducers with first bending resonance frequency of about 53 kHz were fabricated and assembled into a rotary motor. The proposed motor exhibits good performance on speed and torque control. Under a working frequency of 53.2 kHz, the maximum no-load speed and the maximum torque of the prototype are tested to be 53.3 rpm and of 27 mN·m. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ferroelectric Ceramics)
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Article
Proton Acceleration by Ultrashort Intense Laser Interaction with Microstructured Snow Targets
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 459-471; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030459 - 26 Aug 2015
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2242
Abstract
Enhanced proton acceleration to high energy by relatively modest ultrashort laser pulses and structured dynamic plasma snow targets was demonstrated experimentally. High proton yield emitted to narrow solid angle with energies of up 25 MeV were detected from interaction of a 5 TW [...] Read more.
Enhanced proton acceleration to high energy by relatively modest ultrashort laser pulses and structured dynamic plasma snow targets was demonstrated experimentally. High proton yield emitted to narrow solid angle with energies of up 25 MeV were detected from interaction of a 5 TW laser with snow targets. The high yield was attributed to a carefully planned prepulse and microstructured snow targets. We studied experimentally the minimal energy requirements for the adequate prepulse and we are using PIC simulations to study the dynamics of acceleration process. Based on our simulations, we predict that using the proposed scheme protons can be accelerated to energies above 150 MeV by 100 TW laser systems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Casting Light on Cancer Therapy)
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Article
Research of Integrity and Authentication in OPC UA Communication Using Whirlpool Hash Function
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 446-458; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030446 - 21 Aug 2015
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2617
Abstract
Currently, the demand for information security of industrial control systems is becoming more and more urgent, but the security model proposed by OPC UA cannot meet the practical requirements of industrial control systems. For this reason, this paper proposes a new security communication [...] Read more.
Currently, the demand for information security of industrial control systems is becoming more and more urgent, but the security model proposed by OPC UA cannot meet the practical requirements of industrial control systems. For this reason, this paper proposes a new security communication model to provide integrity and authentication in OPC UA. This model uses the Whirlpool hash function to check integrity and generates digital signature along with RSA in message transmission. Compared to SHA-1, Whirlpool has a higher calculation speed and lower collision rate. Through this model, terminals in the upper layer can communicate with field devices via a channel with high security and efficiency. Full article
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Article
Design and Status of the ELIMED Beam Line for Laser-Driven Ion Beams
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 427-445; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030427 - 21 Aug 2015
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 2970
Abstract
Charged particle acceleration using ultra-intense and ultra-short laser pulses has gathered a strong interest in the scientific community and it is now one of the most attractive topics in the relativistic laser-plasma interaction research. Indeed, it could represent the future of particle acceleration [...] Read more.
Charged particle acceleration using ultra-intense and ultra-short laser pulses has gathered a strong interest in the scientific community and it is now one of the most attractive topics in the relativistic laser-plasma interaction research. Indeed, it could represent the future of particle acceleration and open new scenarios in multidisciplinary fields, in particular, medical applications. One of the biggest challenges consists of using, in a future perspective, high intensity laser-target interaction to generate high-energy ions for therapeutic purposes, eventually replacing the old paradigm of acceleration, characterized by huge and complex machines. The peculiarities of laser-driven beams led to develop new strategies and advanced techniques for transport, diagnostics and dosimetry of the accelerated particles, due to the wide energy spread, the angular divergence and the extremely intense pulses. In this framework, the realization of the ELIMED (ELI-Beamlines MEDical applications) beamline, developed by INFN-LNS (Catania, Italy) and installed in 2017 as a part of the ELIMAIA beamline at the ELI-Beamlines (Extreme Light Infrastructure Beamlines) facility in Prague, has the aim to investigate the feasibility of using laser-driven ion beams in multidisciplinary applications. ELIMED will represent the first user’s open transport beam line where a controlled laser-driven ion beam will be used for multidisciplinary and medical studies. In this paper, an overview of the beamline, with a detailed description of the main transport elements, will be presented. Moreover, a description of the detectors dedicated to diagnostics and dosimetry will be reported, with some preliminary results obtained both with accelerator-driven and laser-driven beams. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Casting Light on Cancer Therapy)
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Article
Expeditious Synthesis of Noble Metal Nanoparticles Using Vitamin B12 under Microwave Irradiation
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 415-426; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030415 - 19 Aug 2015
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 2900
Abstract
A greener synthesis protocol for noble nanometals is developed using vitamin B12 as a reducing and capping agent in conjunction with the use of microwaves. Successful assembly of nanoparticles or microparticles with varied shapes and sizes have been demonstrated. The synthesized Ag, [...] Read more.
A greener synthesis protocol for noble nanometals is developed using vitamin B12 as a reducing and capping agent in conjunction with the use of microwaves. Successful assembly of nanoparticles or microparticles with varied shapes and sizes have been demonstrated. The synthesized Ag, Au, and Pd samples were thoroughly characterized with X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, high resolution transmission microscopy, and UV-visible spectrophotometry, confirming that metallic Ag, Au, and Pd were synthesized by the green chemistry method. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Nanotechnology and Applied Nanosciences)
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Article
New Programmable CMOS Fuzzifier and C2V Circuits Applicable in FLC Chip for Signal Processing of MEMS Glucose Sensors
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 402-414; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030402 - 18 Aug 2015
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2701
Abstract
This paper presents the design and simulation of improved circuits of Fuzzifier and capacitance to voltage (C2V) converter. The Fuzzifier circuit is designed based on analog advantages such as low die area, high accuracy, and simplicity which are added to the fuzzy system [...] Read more.
This paper presents the design and simulation of improved circuits of Fuzzifier and capacitance to voltage (C2V) converter. The Fuzzifier circuit is designed based on analog advantages such as low die area, high accuracy, and simplicity which are added to the fuzzy system advantages. For implementing this idea, a programmable Membership Function Generator (MFG) including differential pair circuit as a Fuzzifier is proposed. The MFG generates arbitrary forms of Gaussian, Trapezoidal, and Triangular shapes. The shape types are achieved using control switches and different reference voltages. This structure is also general purpose in tuning the slope of Membership Functions (MFs) using scaled transistors with different W/L ratios. With a specific purpose in mind, we used it here to generate fuzzy language terms from sensed classic data of a blood glucose microsensor. Thus we proposed a C2V circuit to convert capacitance variations (from MEMS glucose microsensor) to voltage values as classic data. The proposed mentioned circuits can be applicable in design of Fuzzy Logic Controller (FLC) chips to detect blood glucose, process its data in Fuzzy environment, and control insulin injection of diabetic patients by MEMS micropumps. The simulation results are achieved by MATLAB and Hspice software in 0.35 μm CMOS standard technology. Full article
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Review
Synthetic Applications of the Parkins Nitrile Hydration Catalyst [PtH{(PMe2O)2H}(PMe2OH)]: A Review
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 380-401; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030380 - 18 Aug 2015
Cited by 28 | Viewed by 3271
Abstract
The air-stable hydride-platinum(II) complex [PtH{(PMe2O)2H}(PMe2OH)], reported by Parkins and co-workers in 1995, is the most versatile catalyst currently available for the hydration of C≡N bonds. It features remarkable activity under relatively mild conditions and exceptionally high functional [...] Read more.
The air-stable hydride-platinum(II) complex [PtH{(PMe2O)2H}(PMe2OH)], reported by Parkins and co-workers in 1995, is the most versatile catalyst currently available for the hydration of C≡N bonds. It features remarkable activity under relatively mild conditions and exceptionally high functional group compatibility, facts that have allowed the implementation of this complex in the synthesis of a large number of structurally complex, biologically active molecules and natural products. In this contribution, synthetic applications of the Parkins catalyst are reviewed. Full article
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Article
An Investigation of the Thermal Expansion Coefficient for Resin Concrete with ZrW2O8
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 367-379; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030367 - 14 Aug 2015
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2636
Abstract
This paper presents a novel resin concrete obtained by adding cubic zirconium tungstate (ZrW2O8) as filler. A prediction algorithm on the thermal expansion coefficient (CTE) of resin concrete (including filler) was established on the basis of the meso-mechanics method [...] Read more.
This paper presents a novel resin concrete obtained by adding cubic zirconium tungstate (ZrW2O8) as filler. A prediction algorithm on the thermal expansion coefficient (CTE) of resin concrete (including filler) was established on the basis of the meso-mechanics method and a three-phase model for concrete. The concept of twice mixing was also proposed for prediction accuracy. Then, a 2D and 3D irregular polygon aggregate particles packing model was set up by Matlab and the properties of the packing model were simulated by finite element analysis. Finally, resin concrete samples were made and their CTE were measured. Mix proportion and addition of ZrW2O8 as influencing factors were considered in this experiment. The CTE of resin concrete was verified by comparing results of the prediction model, simulation model and experiment. The optimum CTE obtained from the experiment was 1.504 × 10−6/K. Compared with 6.817 × 10−6/K without ZrW2O8, it was found that the addition of ZrW2O8 to resin concrete can make it perform significantly better in thermal expansion. Full article
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Article
Optical Fiber Pumped High Repetition Rate and High Power Nd:YVO4 Picosecond Regenerative Amplifier
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 359-366; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030359 - 13 Aug 2015
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 3286
Abstract
We report a stable optical fiber pumped Nd:YVO4 all solid state regenerative amplifier with all fiber picosecond laser as seed source. 888 nm Yb optical fiber lasers was chosen as pump source to reduce quantum defect for improved thermal performance. At the [...] Read more.
We report a stable optical fiber pumped Nd:YVO4 all solid state regenerative amplifier with all fiber picosecond laser as seed source. 888 nm Yb optical fiber lasers was chosen as pump source to reduce quantum defect for improved thermal performance. At the repetition rate of 99.6 kHz, maximum power of 19.63 W with 36 ps pulse duration were achieved when seeded by a 150 mW picosecond oscillator. The wavelength delivered was 1064.07 nm with spectral width of 0.14 nm. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diode-Pumped, Ultra-Short Pulse Lasers)
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Article
Synthesis, Characterization and Shape-Dependent Catalytic CO Oxidation Performance of Ruthenium Oxide Nanomaterials: Influence of Polymer Surfactant
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 344-358; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030344 - 11 Aug 2015
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 2816
Abstract
Ruthenium oxide nano-catalysts supported on mesoporous γ-Al2O3 have been prepared by co-precipitation method and tested for CO oxidation. The effect of polyethylene glycol (PEG) on the properties of the catalyst was studied. Addition of the PEG surfactant acted as a [...] Read more.
Ruthenium oxide nano-catalysts supported on mesoporous γ-Al2O3 have been prepared by co-precipitation method and tested for CO oxidation. The effect of polyethylene glycol (PEG) on the properties of the catalyst was studied. Addition of the PEG surfactant acted as a stabilizer and induced a change in the morphology of ruthenium oxide from spherical nanoparticles to one-dimensional nanorods. Total CO conversion was measured as a function of morphology at 175 °C and 200 °C with 1.0 wt.% loading for PEG-stabilized and un-stabilized catalysts, respectively. Conversion routinely increased with temperature but in each case, the PEG-stabilized catalyst exhibited a notably higher catalytic activity as compared to the un-stabilized equivalent. It can be assumed that the increase in the activity is due to the changes in porosity, shape and dispersion of the catalyst engendered by the use of PEG. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nano-Catalysts and Their Applications)
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Article
Synthesis of Cascadable DDCC-Based Universal Filter Using NAM
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 320-343; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030320 - 11 Aug 2015
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2174
Abstract
A novel systematic approach for synthesizing DDCC-based voltage-mode biquadratic universal filters is proposed. The DDCCs are described by infinity-variables’ models of nullor-mirror elements which can be used in the nodal admittance matrix expansion process. Applying the proposed method, the obtained 12 equivalent filters [...] Read more.
A novel systematic approach for synthesizing DDCC-based voltage-mode biquadratic universal filters is proposed. The DDCCs are described by infinity-variables’ models of nullor-mirror elements which can be used in the nodal admittance matrix expansion process. Applying the proposed method, the obtained 12 equivalent filters offer the following features: multi-input and two outputs, realization of all five standard filter functions, namely lowpass, bandpass, highpass, notch and allpass, high-input impedance, employing only grounded capacitors and resistors, orthogonal controllability between pole frequency and quality factor, and cascadable, low active and passive sensitivities. The workability of some synthesized filters is verified by HSPICE simulations to demonstrate the feasibility of the proposed method. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers)
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Article
Research on the Fault Coefficient in Complex Electrical Engineering
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 307-319; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030307 - 07 Aug 2015
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2816
Abstract
Fault detection and isolation in a complex system are research hotspots and frontier problems in the reliability engineering field. Fault identification can be regarded as a procedure of excavating key characteristics from massive failure data, then classifying and identifying fault samples. In this [...] Read more.
Fault detection and isolation in a complex system are research hotspots and frontier problems in the reliability engineering field. Fault identification can be regarded as a procedure of excavating key characteristics from massive failure data, then classifying and identifying fault samples. In this paper, based on the fundamental of feature extraction about the fault coefficient, we will discuss the fault coefficient feature in complex electrical engineering in detail. For general fault types in a complex power system, even if there is a strong white Gaussian stochastic interference, the fault coefficient feature is still accurate and reliable. The results about comparative analysis of noise influence will also demonstrate the strong anti-interference ability and great redundancy of the fault coefficient feature in complex electrical engineering. Full article
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Article
Electrohydrodynamic Nanofluid Hydrothermal Treatment in an Enclosure with Sinusoidal Upper Wall
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 294-306; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030294 - 07 Aug 2015
Cited by 138 | Viewed by 4990
Abstract
The influence of non-uniform electric filed on Fe3O4-Ethylene glycol nanofluid hydrothermal treatment in an enclosure with sinusoidal upper and moving lower walls is investigated in this study. Control Volume based Finite Element Method (CVFEM) is utilized to simulate in [...] Read more.
The influence of non-uniform electric filed on Fe3O4-Ethylene glycol nanofluid hydrothermal treatment in an enclosure with sinusoidal upper and moving lower walls is investigated in this study. Control Volume based Finite Element Method (CVFEM) is utilized to simulate in the presented model. Numerical investigation are conducted for the sundry parameters such as Reynolds number; nanoparticle volume fraction and supplied. Results show that supplied voltage can change the flow shape. Coulomb force causes isotherms denser near the moving wall. Heat transfer rises with augment of supplied voltage and Reynolds number. Effect of electric filed on heat transfer is more pronounced at low Reynolds number. Finally, a comparison with the existing literature is also made. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Nanotechnology and Applied Nanosciences)
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Review
A Review on the Role of Color and Light in Affective Computing
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 275-293; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030275 - 05 Aug 2015
Cited by 33 | Viewed by 3649
Abstract
Light and color are ubiquitous environmental factors which have an influence on the human being. Hence, light and color issues have to be considered especially significant in human-computer interaction (HCI) and fundamental in affective computing. Affective computing is an interdisciplinary research field which [...] Read more.
Light and color are ubiquitous environmental factors which have an influence on the human being. Hence, light and color issues have to be considered especially significant in human-computer interaction (HCI) and fundamental in affective computing. Affective computing is an interdisciplinary research field which aims to integrate issues dealing with emotions and computers. As a consequence, it seems important to provide an updated review on the significance of light and color in affective computing. With this purpose, the relationship between HCI/affective computing and the emotions affected by light and color are introduced in first place. So far, there is a considerable number of studies and experiments that offer empirical results on the topic. In addition, the color models generally used in affective computing are briefly described. The review on the usage of color and light in affective computing includes a detailed study of the characteristics of methods and the most recent research trends. The paper is complemented with the study of the importance of light and color from demographic, gender and cultural perspectives. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers)
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Article
Application of Extension Sliding Mode Strategy to Maximum Power Point Tracking in Human Power Generation Systems
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 259-274; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030259 - 05 Aug 2015
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2363
Abstract
Sliding mode strategy (SMS) for maximum power point tracking (MPPT) is used in this study of a human power generation system. This approach ensures maximum power at different rotation speeds to increase efficiency and corrects for the lack of robustness in traditional methods. [...] Read more.
Sliding mode strategy (SMS) for maximum power point tracking (MPPT) is used in this study of a human power generation system. This approach ensures maximum power at different rotation speeds to increase efficiency and corrects for the lack of robustness in traditional methods. The intelligent extension theory is used to reduce input saturation and high frequency switching in sliding mode strategy, as well as to increase the efficiency and response speed. The experimental results show that the efficiency of the extension SMS (ESMS) is 5% higher than in traditional SMS, and the response is 0.5 s faster. Full article
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Article
N-Vinylcarbazole: As an Additive for Thermal Polymerization at Room Temperature with in situ Formation of Ag(0) Nanoparticules
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 241-258; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030241 - 05 Aug 2015
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2522
Abstract
N-vinylcarbazole (NVK) is proposed as an additive for acrylates thermal free radical polymerization (FRP) and epoxy thermal ring opening polymerization (ROP) at room temperature. The new initiating systems are based on a silane/silver salt/N-vinylcarbazole interaction, which ensures good to excellent [...] Read more.
N-vinylcarbazole (NVK) is proposed as an additive for acrylates thermal free radical polymerization (FRP) and epoxy thermal ring opening polymerization (ROP) at room temperature. The new initiating systems are based on a silane/silver salt/N-vinylcarbazole interaction, which ensures good to excellent polymerization. Moreover, the polymerization is much more efficient under air than under argon. The effects of the N-vinylcarbazole, silane, silver salt and monomer structures are investigated. Interestingly, silver nanoparticles Ag(0) are formed in situ. The as-synthesized nanocomposite materials contained spherical nanoparticles homogeneously dispersed in the polymer matrices. Polymers and nanoparticles were characterized by Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC), Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM), Energy-Dispersive X-ray Spectrometry (EDS), Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR), and UV-vis spectroscopy. A coherent picture of the involved chemical mechanisms is presented. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Nanotechnology and Applied Nanosciences)
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Article
A Laboratory Test Expert System for Clinical Diagnosis Support in Primary Health Care
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 222-240; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030222 - 04 Aug 2015
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 2721
Abstract
Clinical Decision Support Systems have the potential to reduce lack of communication and errors in diagnostic steps in primary health care. Literature reports have showed great advances in clinical decision support systems in the recent years, which have proven its usefulness in improving [...] Read more.
Clinical Decision Support Systems have the potential to reduce lack of communication and errors in diagnostic steps in primary health care. Literature reports have showed great advances in clinical decision support systems in the recent years, which have proven its usefulness in improving the quality of care. However, most of these systems are focused on specific areas of diseases. In this way, we propose a rule-based expert system, which supports clinicians in primary health care, providing a list of possible diseases regarding patient’s laboratory tests results in order to assist previous diagnosis. Our system also allows storing and retrieving patient’s data and the history of patient’s analyses, establishing a basis for coordination between the various health care levels. A validation step and speed performance tests were made to check the quality of the system. We conclude that our system could improve clinician accuracy and speed, resulting in more efficiency and better quality of service. Finally, we propose some recommendations for further research. Full article
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Article
Self-Assembly of High Density of Triangular Silver Nanoplate Films Promoted by 3-Aminopropyltrimethoxysilane
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 209-221; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030209 - 30 Jul 2015
Cited by 19 | Viewed by 3001
Abstract
In this work, we studied the structure of synthesized triangular silver nanoplates in solution and the growth of the nanoplates on a silicon surface using 3-aminopropyltrimethoxysilane (APTMS) as a coupling agent. The triangular-shaped colloidal silver nanoplates were simply synthesized by a direct chemical [...] Read more.
In this work, we studied the structure of synthesized triangular silver nanoplates in solution and the growth of the nanoplates on a silicon surface using 3-aminopropyltrimethoxysilane (APTMS) as a coupling agent. The triangular-shaped colloidal silver nanoplates were simply synthesized by a direct chemical reduction approach. We studied the three characteristic peaks of the unique optical absorbance of triangular silver nanoplates and subsequently measured an average edge length of 26 ± 1 nm. The nanoplate thickness was determined to be 7 ± 2 nm from transmission electron microscopy images. Depositing the nanoplates on a silicon surface was carried out to determine the coverage of triangular nanoplates obtained when adhesion was promoted by a coupling agent. The APTMS film assisted the attachment of the nanoplates to the silicon surface and the coverage of the nanoplates increased with increasing deposition time. The triangular silver nanoplate thin film was a monolayer and a high coverage (near complete) was obtained after eight hours of exposure to the nanoplate solution. The silver film formed was shown to be a good surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) substrate as it gave an enormous Raman enhancement for bisphenol A (BPA). Full article
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Article
Pilot Study for Investigating the Cyclic Behavior of Slit Damper Systems with Recentering Shape Memory Alloy (SMA) Bending Bars Used for Seismic Restrainers
Appl. Sci. 2015, 5(3), 187-208; https://doi.org/10.3390/app5030187 - 30 Jul 2015
Cited by 46 | Viewed by 3887
Abstract
Although the steel slit dampers commonly utilized for aseismic design approach can dissipate considerable energy created by the yielding of base materials, large residual deformation may happen in the entire frame structure. After strong external excitation, repair costs will be incurred in restoring [...] Read more.
Although the steel slit dampers commonly utilized for aseismic design approach can dissipate considerable energy created by the yielding of base materials, large residual deformation may happen in the entire frame structure. After strong external excitation, repair costs will be incurred in restoring a structure to its original condition and to replace broken components. For this reason, alternative recentering devices characterized by smart structures, which mitigate the damage for such steel energy dissipation slit dampers, are developed in this study. These devices, feasibly functioning as seismic restrainers, can be improved by implementing superelastic shape memory alloy (SMA) bending bars in a parallel motion with the steel energy-dissipating damper. The bending bars fabricated with superelastic SMAs provide self-centering forces upon unloading, and accordingly contribute to reducing permanent deformation in the integrated slit damper system. The steel slit dampers combined with the superelastic SMA bending bars are evaluated with respect to inelastic behavior as simulated by refined finite element (FE) analyses. The FE slit damper models subjected to cyclic loads are calibrated to existing test results in an effort to predict behavior accurately. The responses of the proposed slit damper systems are compared to those of the conventionally used slit damper systems. From the analysis results, it is concluded that innovative steel slit dampers combined with superelastic SMA bending bars generate remarkable performance improvements in terms of post-yield strength, energy dissipation, and recentering capability. Full article
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