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Technologies, Volume 6, Issue 3 (September 2018)

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Open AccessArticle Assessing the Sustainability Performance of Sustainability Management Software
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 88; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030088
Received: 28 August 2018 / Revised: 15 September 2018 / Accepted: 16 September 2018 / Published: 19 September 2018
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Abstract
Companies have made considerable progress in assessing the sustainability of their processes and products, including the information and communication technology (ICT) sector. However, it is surprising that little attention has been given to the sustainability performance of software products. For this article, we
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Companies have made considerable progress in assessing the sustainability of their processes and products, including the information and communication technology (ICT) sector. However, it is surprising that little attention has been given to the sustainability performance of software products. For this article, we chose a case study approach to explore the extent, to which software manufacturers have considered sustainability criteria for their products. We selected a manufacturer of sustainability management software on the assumption that they would be more likely to integrate elements of sustainability performance in their products. In the case study, we applied a previously developed set of criteria for sustainable software (SCSS) using a questionnaire and experiments, to assess a web-based sustainability management software product regarding its sustainability performance. The assessment finds that despite a sustainability conscious manufacturer, a systematic assessment of sustainability regarding software products is missing in the case study. This implies that sustainability assessment for software products is still novel, corresponding knowledge is missing and suitable tools are not yet being widely applied in the industry. The SCSS presents a suitable approach to close this gap, but it does require further refinement, for example regarding its applicability to web-based software on external servers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Green Information and Communication Technology)
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Open AccessArticle A Framework to Optimize Energy Efficiency in Data Centers Based on Certified KPIs
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 87; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030087
Received: 24 July 2018 / Revised: 13 September 2018 / Accepted: 13 September 2018 / Published: 15 September 2018
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Abstract
Both electricity consumption and CO2 emission from Germany’s 50,000 data centers have grown continuously in recent years. However, projects that can be used to evaluate the energy efficiency of data centers are no longer available to companies. Thus, there is a need
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Both electricity consumption and CO2 emission from Germany’s 50,000 data centers have grown continuously in recent years. However, projects that can be used to evaluate the energy efficiency of data centers are no longer available to companies. Thus, there is a need for solid solutions that are going to help data center operators to assess and improve a data center’s energy efficiency. A particular approach in the form of an evolutionary prototype, which is described in this article, is designed to serve as a basis for the development of the software, which will support companies in addressing their personalized energy efficiency needs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Green Information and Communication Technology)
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Open AccessArticle Applying Semantics to Reduce the Time to Analytics within Complex Heterogeneous Infrastructures
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 86; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030086
Received: 15 August 2018 / Revised: 1 September 2018 / Accepted: 4 September 2018 / Published: 8 September 2018
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Abstract
In today’s age of modern information technology, large amounts of data are generated every second to enable subsequent data aggregation and analysis. However, the IT infrastructures that have been set up over the last few decades and which should now be used for
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In today’s age of modern information technology, large amounts of data are generated every second to enable subsequent data aggregation and analysis. However, the IT infrastructures that have been set up over the last few decades and which should now be used for this purpose are very heterogeneous and complex. As a result, tasks for analyzing data, such as collecting, searching, understanding and processing data, become very time-consuming. This makes it difficult to realize visions, such as the Internet of Production, which pursues the goal of guaranteeing the availability of real-time information at any time and place in an industrial setting. To reduce the time to analytics in such scenarios, we present a data ingestion, integration and processing approach consisting of a flexible and configurable data ingestion pipeline as well as a semantic data platform named ESKAPE. The ingestion pipeline provides an abstraction to all tasks related to data acquisition. The main goal is, therefore, the controllable access to data and meta information contained in machines and other systems on the shop floor. Additionally, it provides the possibility to forward the collected data to a configurable endpoint, such as a data lake. ESKAPE acts as one of those endpoints enabling semantic data integration and processing. By annotating data sets with semantic models originating from the Semantic Web, data analysts are able to understand, process and discover these data sets more efficiently. ESKAPE features a three-layered information storage architecture consisting of a data layer for storing integrated raw data sets, a layer containing user-defined semantic models to describe the contextual knowledge necessary to interpret the stored data and a top layer formed by a continuously evolving knowledge graph, combining semantic information from all present semantic models. Based on this storage system, ESKAPE enables the flexible annotation as well as efficient search and processing of data sources without losing the ability of analyzing and querying the underlying raw data with analytic tools. We present and discuss our approach and its benefits and limitations based on a real-world industrial use case. Full article
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Open AccessArticle A Systematic Literature Review of the Factors of Influence on the Environmental Impact of ICT
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 85; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030085
Received: 15 July 2018 / Revised: 6 August 2018 / Accepted: 9 August 2018 / Published: 7 September 2018
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Abstract
Context: Many publications have described, measured, tracked or assessed Information and Communication Technology (ICT) activities that impact the environment. A complete conceptual view of the environmental impact of ICT can be described in three orders of effect: Direct, indirect and systemic. Objective: The
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Context: Many publications have described, measured, tracked or assessed Information and Communication Technology (ICT) activities that impact the environment. A complete conceptual view of the environmental impact of ICT can be described in three orders of effect: Direct, indirect and systemic. Objective: The goal of this study is to find out how the existing literature contributes towards our understanding of the environmental impact of ICT. We approach this question by identifying factors that can be of influence on the environmental impact and map these factors onto a conceptual framework of Green ICT. Method: We used a systematic literature review to collect factors of influence regarding the environmental impact of ICT. Results: From the data we collected and the analyses made, we created a taxonomy, and report on the frequencies of the factors of influence in the primary studies as well as gaps and additions compared to the conceptual framework. We found five main classes of influence that can form a continuous cycle, but noted that the research field is strongly focused on the direct impact of ICT. Conclusion: Our study contributes towards a better understanding of the environmental impact of ICT by framing factors of influence in a conceptual framework. The taxonomy we create and the analysis of the studies could be helpful in defining a research agenda, to further enable the full potential of Green ICT. In addition, the taxonomy can be used as a starting point for a practical tool, for organizations that wish to apply Green ICT to its full extent. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Green Information and Communication Technology)
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Open AccessArticle Improving the Vanillin-Sulphuric Acid Method for Quantifying Total Saponins
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 84; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030084
Received: 16 August 2018 / Revised: 31 August 2018 / Accepted: 3 September 2018 / Published: 6 September 2018
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Abstract
The colorimetric assay used for saponin quantification in plant extracts is subject to interference by common solvents used to extract the saponins from plant materials. Therefore, the degree of interference of ten common solvents was investigated. It was found that the presence of
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The colorimetric assay used for saponin quantification in plant extracts is subject to interference by common solvents used to extract the saponins from plant materials. Therefore, the degree of interference of ten common solvents was investigated. It was found that the presence of acetone, methanol and n-butanol in the reaction solution caused an intense darkening of the reaction solution in the absence of saponins, which likely could lead to erroneous saponin content values. Using aescin to construct standard curves with different solvents—such as water, ethanol, and methanol— also showed significant differences in the standard curves obtained, which led to different values when they were applied to quantify the saponin content of an ethanol extract from dried and powdered Gac (Momordica cochinchinensis Spreng) seed kernels. To improve the method, a solvent evaporation step was added prior to the colorisation reaction to prevent undesired solvent interference during the reaction step. Using this modified protocol for the aescin standard curve and the Gac seed kernel extract eliminated any solvent interference. Thus, this improved protocol is recommended for the quantification of the saponin content of plant extracts irrespective of which extraction solvent is used. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Detecting Body Mass Index from a Facial Photograph in Lifestyle Intervention
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 83; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030083
Received: 31 July 2018 / Revised: 24 August 2018 / Accepted: 26 August 2018 / Published: 31 August 2018
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Abstract
This study aimed to identify whether a research participant’s body-mass index (BMI) can be correctly identified from their facial image (photograph) in order to improve data capturing in dissemination and implementation research. Facial BMI (fBMI) was measured using an algorithm formulated to identify
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This study aimed to identify whether a research participant’s body-mass index (BMI) can be correctly identified from their facial image (photograph) in order to improve data capturing in dissemination and implementation research. Facial BMI (fBMI) was measured using an algorithm formulated to identify points on each enrolled participant’s face from a photograph. Once facial landmarks were detected, distances and ratios between them were computed to characterize facial fatness. A regression function was then used to represent the relationship between facial measures and BMI values to then calculate fBMI from each photo image. Simultaneously, BMI was physically measured (mBMI) by trained researchers, calculated as weight in kilograms divided by height in meters squared (adult BMI). Correlation analysis of fBMI to mBMI (n = 1210) showed significant correlation between fBMI and BMIs in normal and overweight categories (p < 0.0001). Further analysis indicated fBMI to be less accurate in underweight and obese participants. Matched pair data for each individual indicated that fBMI identified participant BMI an average of 0.4212 less than mBMI (p < 0.0007). Contingency table analysis found 109 participants in the ‘obese’ category of mBMI were positioned into a lower category for fBMI. Facial imagery is a viable measure for dissemination of human research; however, further testing to sensitize fBMI measures for underweight and obese individuals are necessary. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Information and Communication Technologies)
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Open AccessArticle Enormously Low Frictional Surface on Tough Hydrogels Simply Created by Laser-Cutting Process
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 82; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030082
Received: 20 July 2018 / Revised: 22 August 2018 / Accepted: 22 August 2018 / Published: 24 August 2018
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Abstract
We measured the friction forces and calculated the friction coefficients of non-processed and laser-processed surfaces of a double network hydrogel (DN gel), which is one of the more famous high-strength gels. The results indicate that laser processing has the ability to reduce the
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We measured the friction forces and calculated the friction coefficients of non-processed and laser-processed surfaces of a double network hydrogel (DN gel), which is one of the more famous high-strength gels. The results indicate that laser processing has the ability to reduce the friction coefficients of the gel surfaces. The observation of gel surfaces suggests that the cause of friction reduction is a change in the roughness of the gel surfaces due to laser processing. This finding is expected to lead us to further understanding of the physicochemical properties of hydrogels. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Systems)
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Open AccessArticle Temperature Variability of Poisson’s Ratio and Its Influence on the Complex Modulus Determined by Dynamic Mechanical Analysis
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 81; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030081
Received: 20 July 2018 / Revised: 20 August 2018 / Accepted: 21 August 2018 / Published: 23 August 2018
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Abstract
Dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA) is the usual technology for the thermomechanical viscoelastic characterization of materials. This method monitors the instant values of load and displacement to determine the instant specimen stiffness. Posteriorly, it recurs to those values, the geometric dimensions of the specimen,
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Dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA) is the usual technology for the thermomechanical viscoelastic characterization of materials. This method monitors the instant values of load and displacement to determine the instant specimen stiffness. Posteriorly, it recurs to those values, the geometric dimensions of the specimen, and Poisson’s ratio to determine the complex modulus. However, during this analysis, it is assumed that Poisson’s ratio is constant, which is not always true, especially in situations where the temperature can change and promote internal modification in the specimens. This study explores the error that is imposed in the results by the determination of the real values of complex moduli due to variable Poisson’s ratios arising from temperature variability using a constant frequency. The results suggest that the evolution of the dynamic mechanical analysis should consider the Poisson’s ratio input as a variable to eliminate this error in future material characterization. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Reversible Gelation System for Hydrazine Based on Polymer Absorbent
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 80; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030080
Received: 11 July 2018 / Revised: 6 August 2018 / Accepted: 13 August 2018 / Published: 20 August 2018
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Abstract
Reversible absorbents for safe storage of toxic hydrazine were developed. Various cross-linked polar polymers were examined as absorbents for hydrazine and its 35% aqueous solution, and structurally similar polymers were found to be suitable for effective absorption. Namely, cross-linked polyacrylamide (CPAM) was most
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Reversible absorbents for safe storage of toxic hydrazine were developed. Various cross-linked polar polymers were examined as absorbents for hydrazine and its 35% aqueous solution, and structurally similar polymers were found to be suitable for effective absorption. Namely, cross-linked polyacrylamide (CPAM) was most effective among examined various hydrophilic polymers. CPAM absorbed 43- and 31-fold heavier amounts of absolute hydrazine and 35% aqueous solution, respectively, by simple soaking. Absorbed hydrazine could be quantitatively released either by N2 gas flow and compression, and the resulting absorbent reabsorbed hydrazine without loss of the absorption ability. The absorption ability was higher than conventional covalent storages, and the release protocol, without dissolution of the absorbent, are suitable for storage systems in hydrazine fuel cells. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Systems)
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Open AccessArticle A Suppression Method for Elution of F, [B(OH)4], AsO43−, and CrO42− from Industrial Wastes Using Some Inhibitors and Crushed Stone Powder
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 79; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030079
Received: 20 July 2018 / Revised: 13 August 2018 / Accepted: 14 August 2018 / Published: 19 August 2018
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Abstract
The disposal and the reuse of industrial wastes have become increasingly difficult due to the elution of hazardous anions, such as F, [B(OH)4], AsO43, and CrO42. Effective methods for
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The disposal and the reuse of industrial wastes have become increasingly difficult due to the elution of hazardous anions, such as F, [B(OH)4], AsO43, and CrO42. Effective methods for removing hazardous ions and reusing solid wastes are urgently required. In this study, Ca(OH)2, MgCl2, and BaCl2 were added to reduce the elution concentrations of F, B, As, and Cr by coprecipitating insoluble inorganic salts. After this, ordinary Portland cement (OPC) was added to the ion exchange and solidified with these hazardous ion-containing substances. The addition of crushed stone powder (CSP), which was a by-product of the process of crushing aggregates or sawing stone, inhibited the elution of hazardous ions and improved the inhibition effect of OPC. The elution concentrations of F, B, As, and Cr were successfully reduced from their maximum elution concentration of 10 mg/L to below the environmental standards values of Japan. A simultaneous inhibition method for the elution of F, B, As, and Cr from industrial wastes has been developed successfully and would be able to promote the reuse and recycling of CSP and other industrial wastes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Systems)
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Open AccessArticle Evaluation of Ion-Exchange Characteristics of Cesium in Natural Japanese Rocks
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 78; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030078
Received: 20 June 2018 / Revised: 9 August 2018 / Accepted: 10 August 2018 / Published: 17 August 2018
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Abstract
A large amount of soil was contaminated by radioactive cesium due to the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant in Japan in 2011. The adsorption behavior of cesium ions (Cs+) is strongly influenced by numerous factors, including the components,
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A large amount of soil was contaminated by radioactive cesium due to the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant in Japan in 2011. The adsorption behavior of cesium ions (Cs+) is strongly influenced by numerous factors, including the components, structure and weathering conditions of natural soil. The adsorption and ion exchange characteristics of Cs+ ions onto and from natural Japanese rocks with well-known components were studied. Cs+ adsorption onto volcanic rocks (0.9–5.3 mg/g) occurred more easily than that onto plutonic rocks (0.7–0.8 mg/g) due to differences in crystallinity. In addition, the adsorption quantity of cesium increased with increasing lattice water content and content of ion-exchangeable cations in the rock samples. The cesium adsorption ability of rock was inhibited by seawater and coexisting ions in the solution. Cesium adsorption quantities onto andosol, containing the corrosion products, increased approximately 2.7-fold with increasing pH from neutral to basic. Cesium desorption differed depending on the type of salt used, and the desorption rates were highest with ammonium salts. Cs+ desorption from regions such as the soil interlayer and the pores were inhibited by melting of the rock surface. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Systems)
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Open AccessArticle Detection of 1,5-anhydroglucitol as a Biomarker for Diabetes Using an Organic Field-Effect Transistor-Based Biosensor
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 77; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030077
Received: 19 July 2018 / Revised: 11 August 2018 / Accepted: 13 August 2018 / Published: 15 August 2018
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Abstract
Sensor devices that can be fabricated on a flexible plastic film produced at a low cost using inkjet-printing technology are suitable for point-of-care applications. An organic field-effect transistor (OFET)-based biosensor can function as a potentiometric electrochemical sensor. To investigate the usefulness of an
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Sensor devices that can be fabricated on a flexible plastic film produced at a low cost using inkjet-printing technology are suitable for point-of-care applications. An organic field-effect transistor (OFET)-based biosensor can function as a potentiometric electrochemical sensor. To investigate the usefulness of an OFET-based biosensor, we demonstrated the detection of 1,5-anhydroglucitol (1,5-AG) and glucose, which are monosaccharides used as biomarkers of diabetes. An OFET-based biosensor combined with a Prussian blue (PB) electrode, modified with glucose oxidase (GOx) or pyranose oxidase (POx), was utilized for the detection of the monosaccharides. When the GOx- or POx-PB electrode was immersed in glucose solution at the determined concentration, shifts in the low-voltage direction of transfer characteristic curves of the OFET were observed to be dependent on the glucose concentrations in the range of 0–10 mM. For 1,5-AG, the curve shifts were observed only with the POx-PB electrode. Detection of glucose and 1,5-AG was achieved in a substrate-specific manner of the enzymes on the printed OFET-biosensor. Although further improvements are required in the detection concentration range, the plastic-filmOFET-biosensors will enable the measurement of not only diabetes biomarkers but also various other biomarkers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Systems)
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Open AccessArticle An Analysis of Best Practice Patterns for Corporate Social Responsibility in Top IT Companies
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 76; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030076
Received: 20 July 2018 / Revised: 8 August 2018 / Accepted: 11 August 2018 / Published: 15 August 2018
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Abstract
In order to show their compliance with Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) goals, companies report their “sustainable initiatives” into their CSR reports. However, from small companies to multinational, it is hard to see the real benefits of sustainable strategies’ implementation, since there are actually
[...] Read more.
In order to show their compliance with Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) goals, companies report their “sustainable initiatives” into their CSR reports. However, from small companies to multinational, it is hard to see the real benefits of sustainable strategies’ implementation, since there are actually no general patterns defined which can ensure high impacts on sustainability. Moreover, there are few metrics and process to assess the efficiency of a sustainability strategy, but the different studies made in that field can show different results, this induces a part of uncertainty to evaluate the performance of a sustainable strategy. Therefore, in this paper, we contribute a pattern approach to implementing sustainability in a company. To do that, we performed an analysis of the 25 CSR reports coming from the 25 biggest companies in the IT sector in order to extract sustainability patterns that are provided in an online catalog to (1) give first tracks to companies which would engage in sustainability initiatives and do not really know where to start; and (2) to give an indicator to companies who already have taken up sustainability initiatives and would like to establish an evaluation of it. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Green Information and Communication Technology)
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Open AccessArticle Gathering and Analyzing Surface Parameters for Diet Identification Purposes
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 75; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030075
Received: 20 May 2018 / Revised: 27 July 2018 / Accepted: 9 August 2018 / Published: 11 August 2018
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Abstract
Modern surface acquisition devices, such as interferometers and confocal microscopes, make it possible to have accurate three-dimensional (3D) numerical representations of real surfaces. The numerical dental surfaces hold details that are related to the microwear that is caused by food processing. As there
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Modern surface acquisition devices, such as interferometers and confocal microscopes, make it possible to have accurate three-dimensional (3D) numerical representations of real surfaces. The numerical dental surfaces hold details that are related to the microwear that is caused by food processing. As there are numerous surface parameters that describe surface properties and knowing that a lot more can be built, is it possible to identify the ones that can separate taxa based on their diets? Until now, the candidates were chosen from among those provided by metrology software, which often implements International Organization for Standardization (ISO) parameters. Moreover, the way that a parameter is declared as diet-discriminative differs from one researcher to another. The aim of the present work is to propose a framework to broaden the investigation of relevant parameters and subsequently a procedure that is based on statistical tests to highlight the best of them. Many parameters were tested in a previous study. Here, some were dropped and others added to the classical ones. The resulting set is doubled while considering two derived surfaces: the initial one minus a second order and an eighth order polynomial. The resulting surfaces are then sampled—256 samples per surface—making it possible to build new derived parameters that are based on statistics. The studied dental surfaces belong to seven sets of three or more groups with known differences in diet. In almost all cases, the statistical procedure succeeds in identifying the most relevant parameters to reflect the group differences. Surprisingly, the widely used Area-scale fractal complexity (Asfc) parameter—despite some improvements—cannot differentiate the groups as accurately. The present work can be used as a standalone procedure, but it can also be seen as a first step towards machine learning where a lot of training data is necessary, thus making the human intervention prohibitive. Full article
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Open AccessReview Systematic Predictive Analysis of Personalized Life Expectancy Using Smart Devices
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 74; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030074
Received: 19 July 2018 / Revised: 3 August 2018 / Accepted: 9 August 2018 / Published: 10 August 2018
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Abstract
With the emergence of technologies such as electronic health and mobile health (eHealth/mHealth), cloud computing, big data, and the Internet of Things (IoT), health related data are increasing and many applications such as smartphone apps and wearable devices that provide wellness and fitness
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With the emergence of technologies such as electronic health and mobile health (eHealth/mHealth), cloud computing, big data, and the Internet of Things (IoT), health related data are increasing and many applications such as smartphone apps and wearable devices that provide wellness and fitness tracking are entering the market. Some apps provide health related data such as sleep monitoring, heart rate measuring, and calorie expenditure collected and processed by the devices and servers in the cloud. These requirements can be extended to provide a personalized life expectancy (PLE) for the purpose of wellbeing and encouraging lifestyle improvement. No existing works provide this PLE information that is developed and customized for the individual. This article is based on the concurrent models and methodologies to calculate and predict life expectancy (LE) and proposes an idea of using multi-phased approaches to the solution as the project requires an immense and broad range of work to accomplish. As a result, the current prediction of LE, which was found to be up to a maximum of five years could potentially be extended to a lifetime prediction by utilizing generic health data. In this article, the novel idea of the solution proposing a PLE on an individual basis, which can be extended to lifetime is presented in addition to the existing works. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Markov Chain and Techno-Economic Analysis to Identify the Commercial Potential of New Technology: A Case Study of Motorcycle in Surakarta, Indonesia
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 73; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030073
Received: 5 May 2018 / Revised: 20 July 2018 / Accepted: 30 July 2018 / Published: 6 August 2018
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Abstract
LiFePhO4 (lithium iron phosphate) batteries, with their advantages compared to common current motorcycle batteries, are considered as an alternative in substituting wet and dry cell battery. The huge demand for motorcycles along with their batteries in Indonesia also make them an interesting
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LiFePhO4 (lithium iron phosphate) batteries, with their advantages compared to common current motorcycle batteries, are considered as an alternative in substituting wet and dry cell battery. The huge demand for motorcycles along with their batteries in Indonesia also make them an interesting product for business. To assess the commercial potential for such a new technology, market share needs to be estimated as well as the techno-economic feasibility. Hence, market share prediction using the residents of Surakarta Region and techno-economic analysis using Net Present Value (NPV), Internal Rate of Return (IRR), and Payback Period (PP) indicators were conducted in this study. Calculations using Markov chain method show that lithium iron phosphate batteries tend to dominate the market after certain period. Techno-economic analysis also finds that the commercialization is feasible in three conditions: first mover, even with market leader and equilibrium point. Therefore, there is a great commercial potential for lithium iron phosphate batteries, especially in Indonesia. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Channel Estimation and Data Detection Using Machine Learning for MIMO 5G Communication Systems in Fading Channel
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 72; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030072
Received: 23 May 2018 / Revised: 13 July 2018 / Accepted: 26 July 2018 / Published: 6 August 2018
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Abstract
In multiple-input multiple-output orthogonal frequency-division multiplexing (MIMO-OFDM) systems, multi-user detection (MUD) algorithms play an important role in reducing the effect of multi-access interference (MAI). A combination of the estimation of channel and multi-user detection is proposed for eliminating various interferences and reduce the
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In multiple-input multiple-output orthogonal frequency-division multiplexing (MIMO-OFDM) systems, multi-user detection (MUD) algorithms play an important role in reducing the effect of multi-access interference (MAI). A combination of the estimation of channel and multi-user detection is proposed for eliminating various interferences and reduce the bit error rate (BER). First, a novel sparse based k-nearest neighbor classifier is proposed to estimate the unknown activity factor at a high data rate. The active users are continuously detected and their data are decoded at the base station (BS) receiver. The activity detection considers both the pilot and data symbols. Second, an optimal pilot allocation method is suggested to select the minimum mutual coherence in the measurement matrix for optimal pilot placement. The suggested algorithm for designing pilot patterns significantly improves the results in terms of mean square error (MSE), symbol error rate (SER) and bit error rate for channel detection. An optimal pilot placement reduces the computational complexity and maximizes the accuracy of the system. The performance of the channel estimation (CE) and MUD for the proposed scheme was good as it provided significant results, which were validated through simulations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Machine Learning for 5G Communications and Beyond)
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Open AccessArticle Dynamic Evaluation on the Traffic State of an Urban Gated Community by Opening the Micro-Inter-Road Network
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 71; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030071
Received: 15 June 2018 / Revised: 25 July 2018 / Accepted: 26 July 2018 / Published: 31 July 2018
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Abstract
The opening of a gated community to expand the micro-road network in an urban traffic system is an importance research topic related to urban congestion. To satisfy the demands of opening an early choosing case, this paper proposes a comprehensive selection framework on
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The opening of a gated community to expand the micro-road network in an urban traffic system is an importance research topic related to urban congestion. To satisfy the demands of opening an early choosing case, this paper proposes a comprehensive selection framework on qualified communities and their appropriate opening times by describing the traffic state at the boundary road network accurately. The traffic entropy model and fuzzy c-means (FCM) method are used in this paper. In the framework, a new opening evaluation entropy model is built using basic theory of the thermodynamic traffic entropy method. The traffic state entropy values of the boundary road network and entropy production are calculated to determinate the opening time. In addition, a specific fuzzy range evaluation standard at a preset gated community is drawn with an FCM algorithm to verify the opening determination. A case study based on the traffic information in a simulated gated community in Shanghai is evaluated and proves that the findings of opening evaluation are in accordance with the actual situation. It is found that the micro-inter-road network of a gated community should be opened as the entropy value reaches 2.5. As the travel time is less than 20 s, the correlation between the opening entropy value and the journey delay time exhibits a good linear correlation, which indicates smooth traffic flow. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Systems)
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Open AccessArticle A New Control Chart for Monitoring the Process Mean Using Successive Sampling and Multiple Dependent State Repetitive Sampling
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 70; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030070
Received: 18 June 2018 / Revised: 18 July 2018 / Accepted: 25 July 2018 / Published: 30 July 2018
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In this paper, a new control chart scheme has been developed for monitoring the production process mean using successive sampling over two occasions. The proposed chart reduces to three different existing control charts under different assumptions and is compared with these three existing
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In this paper, a new control chart scheme has been developed for monitoring the production process mean using successive sampling over two occasions. The proposed chart reduces to three different existing control charts under different assumptions and is compared with these three existing control charts for monitoring the process average. It has been observed that the proposed control chart performs better than the other existing control charts in terms of average run length (ARL). A simulation study using an artificial data set was included for demonstrating the process shift detection power of the proposed control chart. Full article
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Open AccessArticle An EWMA-DiD Control Chart to Capture Small Shifts in the Process Average Using Auxiliary Information
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 69; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030069
Received: 29 May 2018 / Revised: 18 July 2018 / Accepted: 23 July 2018 / Published: 30 July 2018
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Abstract
Among the Statistical Process Control (SPC) techniques, control charts are considered to be high weight-age due to their effectiveness in process variation. As the Shewhart’s charts are not that active in monitoring small and moderate process variations, the statisticians have been making efforts
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Among the Statistical Process Control (SPC) techniques, control charts are considered to be high weight-age due to their effectiveness in process variation. As the Shewhart’s charts are not that active in monitoring small and moderate process variations, the statisticians have been making efforts to improve the performance of the control chart by introducing several techniques within the tool. These techniques consist of experimenting with different estimators, different sampling selection techniques, and mixed methodologies. The proposed chart is one of the examples of a mixed chart technique that has shown its efficiency in monitoring small variations better than any of the existing techniques in the specific situation of auxiliary information. To show and compare its performance, average run length (ARL) tables and ARL curves have been presented in the article. An industrial example has also been included to show the practical application of the proposed chart in a real scenario. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Participated Planning of Large Water Infrastructures through Virtual Prototyping Technologies
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 68; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030068
Received: 30 May 2018 / Revised: 19 July 2018 / Accepted: 26 July 2018 / Published: 28 July 2018
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Abstract
The design of large dams is a collaborative activity with relevant social and political implications. Planning such large infrastructures requires involving all the interested stakeholders, making shared decisions, tracing the design process. There are currently not many Virtual Prototyping tools to support this
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The design of large dams is a collaborative activity with relevant social and political implications. Planning such large infrastructures requires involving all the interested stakeholders, making shared decisions, tracing the design process. There are currently not many Virtual Prototyping tools to support this collaborative design process. In this paper, we propose a participated planning support system based on mobile and Augmented Reality technologies which allows different stakeholders to take part in the review of a large dam project through an application that automatically acquires information available online, allows all stakeholders to share information, and finally records everything for a subsequent analysis. The development of the application, as well as its use in two case studies and a user study, are described in the paper. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Technologies for Industry 4.0)
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Open AccessArticle Influence of Mutual Coupling on Stability of RCS Response in Chipless RFID
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 67; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030067
Received: 31 May 2018 / Revised: 10 July 2018 / Accepted: 14 July 2018 / Published: 17 July 2018
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Abstract
The paper investigates the influence of mutual coupling between individual scatterings of chipless Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tags based on its frequency-domain performance using a simplified equivalent circuit model. The proposed steady state analysis predicts a fast and satisfactory amplitude level and frequency
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The paper investigates the influence of mutual coupling between individual scatterings of chipless Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tags based on its frequency-domain performance using a simplified equivalent circuit model. The proposed steady state analysis predicts a fast and satisfactory amplitude level and frequency position of resonant peaks of a predicted radar cross section (RCS) response. The proposed approach is capable of pre-evaluating a suitability of the particular scattered topology for implementing in chipless RFID tags. It is demonstrated on two different geometries. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chipless RFID Technologies)
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Open AccessArticle Tactile Feels in Grasping/Cutting Processes with Scissors
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 66; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030066
Received: 20 June 2018 / Revised: 10 July 2018 / Accepted: 11 July 2018 / Published: 14 July 2018
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Abstract
Understanding the dynamic phenomena in grasping/cutting processes with scissors is important for the design of surgical robots and virtual reality systems. Here, we show the relationship between the mechanical stimuli and tactile sensations when forceps or scissors are used. Nineteen subjects grasped or
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Understanding the dynamic phenomena in grasping/cutting processes with scissors is important for the design of surgical robots and virtual reality systems. Here, we show the relationship between the mechanical stimuli and tactile sensations when forceps or scissors are used. Nineteen subjects grasped or cut objects and evaluated the tactile sensations in each of the processes. To conduct the tactile and mechanical evaluation simultaneously, subjects operated scissors that were fixed to a mechanical evaluation system. When subjects grasped urethane resin, stainless steel plate, and adhesive tape, soft, hard, and sticky feels were perceived, respectively. Dry, hard, and creaking feels were perceived in the paper cutting process. In addition, we observed four characteristic tangential force profiles in the processes. Regression analysis suggests the following findings: Hardness is perceived by the change of force and blade movement when the scissors make contact with the object. Stickiness is caused by the increase and decrease of force at the moment of peeling when the scissors break contact with the object. The cutting sensation is affected by fine force fluctuations during the scissors closing and the rapidly decreased force at the moment of cutting completion. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Systems)
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Open AccessArticle An Effective Security Requirements Engineering Framework for Cyber-Physical Systems
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 65; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030065
Received: 24 May 2018 / Revised: 28 June 2018 / Accepted: 5 July 2018 / Published: 12 July 2018
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Abstract
Context and motivation: Cyber-Physical Systems (CPSs) are gaining priority over other systems. The heterogeneity of these systems increases the importance of security. Both the developer and the requirement analyst must consider details of not only the software, but also the hardware perspective, including
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Context and motivation: Cyber-Physical Systems (CPSs) are gaining priority over other systems. The heterogeneity of these systems increases the importance of security. Both the developer and the requirement analyst must consider details of not only the software, but also the hardware perspective, including sensor and network security. Several models for secure software engineering processes have been proposed, but they are limited to software; therefore, to support the processes of security requirements, we need a security requirements framework for CPSs. Question/Problem: Do existing security requirements frameworks fulfil the needs of CPS security requirements? The answer is no; existing security requirements frameworks fail to accommodate security concerns outside of software boundaries. Little or even no attention has been given to sensor, hardware, network, and third party elements during security requirements engineering in different existing frameworks. Principal Ideas/results: We have proposed, applied, and assessed an incremental security requirements evolution approach, which configures the heterogeneous nature of components and their threats in order to generate a secure system. Contribution: The most significant contribution of this paper is to propose a security requirements engineering framework for CPSs that overcomes the issue of security requirements elicitation for heterogeneous CPS components. The proposed framework supports the elicitation of security requirements while considering sensor, receiver protocol, network channel issues, along with software aspects. Furthermore, the proposed CPS framework has been evaluated through a case study, and the results are shown in this paper. The results would provide great support in this research direction. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Improving IoT Technology Adoption through Improving Consumer Trust
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 64; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030064
Received: 24 May 2018 / Revised: 3 July 2018 / Accepted: 5 July 2018 / Published: 7 July 2018
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Abstract
Studies have shown that trust plays a crucial role in the consumers’ decision to adopt Internet of Things (IoT) technologies and services since it helps them to overcome perceptions of risk and uncertainty related to it and enhances the customers’ level of acceptance
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Studies have shown that trust plays a crucial role in the consumers’ decision to adopt Internet of Things (IoT) technologies and services since it helps them to overcome perceptions of risk and uncertainty related to it and enhances the customers’ level of acceptance and adoption intention. Nevertheless, the literature of IoT still lacks studies on the behavioral aspect that explain the customers’ perception towards IoT adoption and focuses more on technological aspect. The main goal of this study is to examine the factors that influence consumer trust and their role in the adoption of IoT technology. A conceptual trust model that encompasses the major factors affecting trust towards IoT technology adoption has been presented. The model is composed of three dimensions of factors that we assume will influence the level of trust which are: product related factors, social influence related factors and security related factors. This framework is validated through surveying consumers’ opinions, which provide views and feedback regarding factors influencing their trust towards this technology. The model can assist researchers to further investigate the trust issues and create a trustworthy literature to guide IoT products’ development and marketing strategies that are focused on the consumer’s requirements. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Information and Communication Technologies)
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Open AccessArticle Detection of Odorant Molecules in the Gaseous Phase Using α-, β-, and γ-Cyclodextrin Films on a Quartz Crystal Microbalance
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 63; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030063
Received: 13 June 2018 / Revised: 3 July 2018 / Accepted: 5 July 2018 / Published: 6 July 2018
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Abstract
There is an interest in sensors for the detection of odorant molecules in the gaseous phase, especially those related to the fragrance of fruits, because odorant sensing is useful for on-site quality control of agricultural products. Previously, gas-chromatographic methods requiring bench-top devices were
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There is an interest in sensors for the detection of odorant molecules in the gaseous phase, especially those related to the fragrance of fruits, because odorant sensing is useful for on-site quality control of agricultural products. Previously, gas-chromatographic methods requiring bench-top devices were used for odorant-molecule detection. Herein, we report an odorant sensor based on cyclodextrins (CDs) as a stable odorant receptor, using a highly mass-sensitive and quantitative 27-MHz quartz crystal microbalance (QCM) device, which has the advantage of possible incorporation into portable devices. When ethyl butyrate (a model odorant molecule for fruit fragrances) was flowed onto a QCM plate modified with α-, β-, or γ-CD network films, a decrease in frequency was observed (corresponding to an increase in mass), owing to the capture of odorant molecules by CD molecules. The CD films were capable of capturing and releasing odorant molecules, depending on the type of CD (α-, β-, or γ-CD). Thus, these sensors are reusable for odorant-molecule sensing, and are applicable to pattern recognition of odorant molecules. Thus, sensors based on CD films combined with a QCM handheld device could be applied to monitoring the condition of fruits. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Systems)
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Open AccessArticle Selected Harmonic Elimination for Cascaded Multilevel Inverter Based on Photovoltaic with Fuzzy Logic Control Maximum Power Point Tracking Technique
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 62; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030062
Received: 20 April 2018 / Revised: 24 June 2018 / Accepted: 26 June 2018 / Published: 2 July 2018
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Abstract
This paper describes the work performed on a single phase 9-level cascaded H-Bridge multilevel inverter (CHB-MLI) for photovoltaic (PV) power generation, using two methods of maximum power point tracking (MPPT)—namely fuzzy logic controller (FLC) and perturbation & observation (P&O). The MPPT scheme is
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This paper describes the work performed on a single phase 9-level cascaded H-Bridge multilevel inverter (CHB-MLI) for photovoltaic (PV) power generation, using two methods of maximum power point tracking (MPPT)—namely fuzzy logic controller (FLC) and perturbation & observation (P&O). The MPPT scheme is used to extract maximum power from solar PV cells. PV cell temperature and solar irradiation are input quantities and the two used methods estimate the optimum duty cycle to ensure DC-DC boost converter maximum output. This paper also compares the results obtained by the work performed on CHB-MLI with DC-DC boost converter using FLC based MPPT controller to that of results obtained with the conventional P&O method. The fuzzy logic controller works with imprecise inputs, it does not need an accurate mathematical model and it can handle nonlinearity well. Besides, fuzzy is more robust as compared to the conventional non-linear controller. The genetic algorithm (GA) based Selective Harmonic Elimination (SHE) technique is also applied to CHB-MLI for the elimination of harmonics from the output voltage. In the work reported in this paper on PV inverter making use of the Fuzzy MPPT technique, the obtained total harmonic distortion (THD) of the output voltage without filter circuit and with filter circuit are within IEEE standard 519. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Chipless Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) Sensor for Angular Rotation Monitoring
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 61; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030061
Received: 31 May 2018 / Revised: 25 June 2018 / Accepted: 26 June 2018 / Published: 29 June 2018
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Abstract
A novel, chipless, Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) sensor is proposed for monitoring angular rotation. The rotation state is recovered by collecting the cross polar response of a tag, based on a periodic surface composed of a set of dipoles. The encoding mechanism allows
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A novel, chipless, Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) sensor is proposed for monitoring angular rotation. The rotation state is recovered by collecting the cross polar response of a tag, based on a periodic surface composed of a set of dipoles. The encoding mechanism allows the sensor to be very robust, even if it is applied on metallic objects, or in an environment with strong multipath. The proposed sensor does not require a large operational bandwidth. Instead, only a small set of reading frequencies are required. The number of reading frequencies required is dependent on the number of the employed dipoles. It is demonstrated that the rotation state of an object can be monitored within a span of 180 degrees, with up to a three-degree resolution, by employing a chipless RFID sensor comprising of four dipoles. The far field reading scheme and the absence of any electronics device allow the sensor to be employed in harsh environments. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chipless RFID Technologies)
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Open AccessArticle Structural Formation of Cyclic Olefin Copolymer (COC) Films as Revealed by Real Time Retardation Measurements during Fast Stretching Process
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 60; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030060
Received: 11 June 2018 / Revised: 23 June 2018 / Accepted: 26 June 2018 / Published: 29 June 2018
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Abstract
This work reports on an experimental study of the fast stretching of a cyclic olefin copolymer (COC) film. We measured the stress retardation of the polymer film during fast stretching and identified a relationship between stress and birefringence. This relationship indicates that the
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This work reports on an experimental study of the fast stretching of a cyclic olefin copolymer (COC) film. We measured the stress retardation of the polymer film during fast stretching and identified a relationship between stress and birefringence. This relationship indicates that the film obeys the stress optical rule (SOR) at the onset of stretching. At slower stretching speeds, the stress optical constant (SOC) settles at a certain value. With faster stretching speeds, SOC values approach the photo-elastic constant (PEC). Our study also investigated the effects of stretching temperatures and stretching modes for both uniaxial stretching and biaxial stretching. We applied techniques of thermal analysis to evaluate higher order structures after fast stretching. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Systems)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Compact Multi Bit Slotted C-Scatterer for Threshold Sensitive Chipless Wireless Temperature Sensor
Technologies 2018, 6(3), 59; https://doi.org/10.3390/technologies6030059
Received: 25 May 2018 / Revised: 20 June 2018 / Accepted: 24 June 2018 / Published: 28 June 2018
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Abstract
This paper presents a novel compact scatterer structure for a passive chipless wireless temperature threshold sensor. The structure is based on a single C-scatterer with multiple embedded slots; each slot forms a sub-scatterer dedicated to resonating in one regulated band. This structure has
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This paper presents a novel compact scatterer structure for a passive chipless wireless temperature threshold sensor. The structure is based on a single C-scatterer with multiple embedded slots; each slot forms a sub-scatterer dedicated to resonating in one regulated band. This structure has the advantage of increasing the data capacity without increasing the number of scatterers, which results in a more compact sensor size. The sensing principle is based on the detuning of the resonance frequency peaks of the backscattered signal from the slotted scatterer due to temperature variations. For the first time, this work demonstrates the design of a passive chipless sensor while at the same time respecting the conventional radio frequency (RF) emission regulations. The sensor only exploits the allowed bands: European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) and Industrial, Scientific and Medical (ISM). Sensitivity measurement results show sensitive characteristics in the order of 10−4 GHz/°C in accordance with the theoretical predictions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chipless RFID Technologies)
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