Editor's Choice Articles

Editor’s Choice articles are based on recommendations by the scientific editors of MDPI journals from around the world. Editors select a small number of articles recently published in the journal that they believe will be particularly interesting to authors, or important in this field. The aim is to provide a snapshot of some of the most exciting work published in the various research areas of the journal.

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Research

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Article
Recognition of Acoustic Signals of Commutator Motors
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(12), 2630; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8122630 - 15 Dec 2018
Cited by 45
Abstract
Most faults can stop a motor, and time is lost in fixing the damaged motor. This is a reason why it is essential to develop fault-detection methods. This paper describes the acoustic-based fault detection of two commutator motors: the commutator motor of an [...] Read more.
Most faults can stop a motor, and time is lost in fixing the damaged motor. This is a reason why it is essential to develop fault-detection methods. This paper describes the acoustic-based fault detection of two commutator motors: the commutator motor of an electric impact drill and the commutator motor of a blender. Acoustic signals were recorded by a smartphone. Five states of the electric impact drill and three states of the blender were analysed: for the electric impact drill, these states were healthy, damaged gear train, faulty fan with five broken rotor blades, faulty fan with 10 broken rotor blades, and shifted brush (motor off); for the blender, these states were healthy, faulty fan with two broken rotor blades, and faulty fan with five broken rotor blades. A feature extraction method, MSAF-RATIO-27-MULTIEXPANDED-4-GROUPS (Method of Selection of Amplitudes of Frequency Ratio of 27% Multiexpanded 4 Groups), was developed and used for the computation of feature vectors. The nearest mean (NM) and support vector machine (SVM) classifiers were used for data classification. Analysis of the recognition of acoustic signals was carried out. The analysed value of TEEID (the total efficiency of recognition of the electric impact drill) was equal to 96% for the NM classifier and 88.8% for SVM. The analysed value of TEB (the total efficiency of recognition of the blender) was equal to 100% for the NM classifier and 94.11% for SVM. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fault Diagnosis of Rotating Machine)
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Article
Classification of Heart Sound Signal Using Multiple Features
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(12), 2344; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8122344 - 22 Nov 2018
Cited by 54
Abstract
Cardiac disorders are critical and must be diagnosed in the early stage using routine auscultation examination with high precision. Cardiac auscultation is a technique to analyze and listen to heart sound using electronic stethoscope, an electronic stethoscope is a device which provides the [...] Read more.
Cardiac disorders are critical and must be diagnosed in the early stage using routine auscultation examination with high precision. Cardiac auscultation is a technique to analyze and listen to heart sound using electronic stethoscope, an electronic stethoscope is a device which provides the digital recording of the heart sound called phonocardiogram (PCG). This PCG signal carries useful information about the functionality and status of the heart and hence several signal processing and machine learning technique can be applied to study and diagnose heart disorders. Based on PCG signal, the heart sound signal can be classified to two main categories i.e., normal and abnormal categories. We have created database of 5 categories of heart sound signal (PCG signals) from various sources which contains one normal and 4 are abnormal categories. This study proposes an improved, automatic classification algorithm for cardiac disorder by heart sound signal. We extract features from phonocardiogram signal and then process those features using machine learning techniques for classification. In features extraction, we have used Mel Frequency Cepstral Coefficient (MFCCs) and Discrete Wavelets Transform (DWT) features from the heart sound signal, and for learning and classification we have used support vector machine (SVM), deep neural network (DNN) and centroid displacement based k nearest neighbor. To improve the results and classification accuracy, we have combined MFCCs and DWT features for training and classification using SVM and DWT. From our experiments it has been clear that results can be greatly improved when Mel Frequency Cepstral Coefficient and Discrete Wavelets Transform features are fused together and used for classification via support vector machine, deep neural network and k-neareast neighbor(KNN). The methodology discussed in this paper can be used to diagnose heart disorders in patients up to 97% accuracy. The code and dataset can be accessed at “https://github.com/yaseen21khan/Classification-of-Heart-Sound-Signal-Using-Multiple-Features-/blob/master/README.md”. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Deep Learning and Big Data in Healthcare)
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Article
Feasibility Study of Steel Bar Corrosion Monitoring Using a Piezoceramic Transducer Enabled Time Reversal Method
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(11), 2304; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8112304 - 19 Nov 2018
Cited by 50
Abstract
Steel bars, which are commonly used as reinforcements in concrete structures, are slender rods and are good conduits for stress wave propagation. In this paper, a lead zirconate titanate (PZT)-based steel bar corrosion monitoring approach was proposed. Two PZT transducers are surface-bonded on [...] Read more.
Steel bars, which are commonly used as reinforcements in concrete structures, are slender rods and are good conduits for stress wave propagation. In this paper, a lead zirconate titanate (PZT)-based steel bar corrosion monitoring approach was proposed. Two PZT transducers are surface-bonded on the two ends of a steel rod, respectively. One works as actuator to generate stress waves, and the other functions as a sensor to detect the propagated stress waves. Time reverse technology was applied in this research to monitor the corrosion of the steel bars with a high signal to noise ratio (SNR). Accelerated corrosion experiments of steel bars were conducted. The anti-corrosion performance of the protected piezoceramic transducers was tested first, and then they were used to monitor the corrosion of the steel bar using the time reversal method. The degree of corrosion in the steel bar was determined by the ratio of mass loss during the experiment. The experimental results show that the peak values of the signal that were obtained by time reversal operation are linearly related to the degree of corrosion of the steel bar, which demonstrates the feasibility of the proposed approach for monitoring the corrosion of steel bars using the time reversal method enabled by piezoceramic transducers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Structural Damage Detection and Health Monitoring)
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Article
Cu-Doped TiO2: Visible Light Assisted Photocatalytic Antimicrobial Activity
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(11), 2067; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8112067 - 26 Oct 2018
Cited by 61
Abstract
Surface contamination by microbes is a major public health concern. A damp environment is one of potential sources for microbe proliferation. Smart photocatalytic coatings on building surfaces using semiconductors like titania (TiO2) can effectively curb this growing threat. Metal-doped titania in [...] Read more.
Surface contamination by microbes is a major public health concern. A damp environment is one of potential sources for microbe proliferation. Smart photocatalytic coatings on building surfaces using semiconductors like titania (TiO2) can effectively curb this growing threat. Metal-doped titania in anatase phase has been proven as a promising candidate for energy and environmental applications. In this present work, the antimicrobial efficacy of copper (Cu)-doped TiO2 (Cu-TiO2) was evaluated against Escherichia coli (Gram-negative) and Staphylococcus aureus (Gram-positive) under visible light irradiation. Doping of a minute fraction of Cu (0.5 mol %) in TiO2 was carried out via sol-gel technique. Cu-TiO2 further calcined at various temperatures (in the range of 500–700 °C) to evaluate the thermal stability of TiO2 anatase phase. The physico-chemical properties of the samples were characterized through X-ray diffraction (XRD), Raman spectroscopy, X-ray photo-electron spectroscopy (XPS) and UV–visible spectroscopy techniques. XRD results revealed that the anatase phase of TiO2 was maintained well, up to 650 °C, by the Cu dopant. UV–vis results suggested that the visible light absorption property of Cu-TiO2 was enhanced and the band gap is reduced to 2.8 eV. Density functional theory (DFT) studies emphasize the introduction of Cu+ and Cu2+ ions by replacing Ti4+ ions in the TiO2 lattice, creating oxygen vacancies. These further promoted the photocatalytic efficiency. A significantly high bacterial inactivation (99.9999%) was attained in 30 min of visible light irradiation by Cu-TiO2. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cu and Cu-Based Nanoparticles: Applications in Catalysis)
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Article
Visualization and Interpretation of Convolutional Neural Network Predictions in Detecting Pneumonia in Pediatric Chest Radiographs
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(10), 1715; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8101715 - 20 Sep 2018
Cited by 63
Abstract
Pneumonia affects 7% of the global population, resulting in 2 million pediatric deaths every year. Chest X-ray (CXR) analysis is routinely performed to diagnose the disease. Computer-aided diagnostic (CADx) tools aim to supplement decision-making. These tools process the handcrafted and/or convolutional neural network [...] Read more.
Pneumonia affects 7% of the global population, resulting in 2 million pediatric deaths every year. Chest X-ray (CXR) analysis is routinely performed to diagnose the disease. Computer-aided diagnostic (CADx) tools aim to supplement decision-making. These tools process the handcrafted and/or convolutional neural network (CNN) extracted image features for visual recognition. However, CNNs are perceived as black boxes since their performance lack explanations. This is a serious bottleneck in applications involving medical screening/diagnosis since poorly interpreted model behavior could adversely affect the clinical decision. In this study, we evaluate, visualize, and explain the performance of customized CNNs to detect pneumonia and further differentiate between bacterial and viral types in pediatric CXRs. We present a novel visualization strategy to localize the region of interest (ROI) that is considered relevant for model predictions across all the inputs that belong to an expected class. We statistically validate the models’ performance toward the underlying tasks. We observe that the customized VGG16 model achieves 96.2% and 93.6% accuracy in detecting the disease and distinguishing between bacterial and viral pneumonia respectively. The model outperforms the state-of-the-art in all performance metrics and demonstrates reduced bias and improved generalization. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Intelligent Imaging Technology)
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Article
Enabling Technologies for Operator 4.0: A Survey
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(9), 1650; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8091650 - 13 Sep 2018
Cited by 56
Abstract
The fast development of smart sensors and wearable devices has provided the opportunity to develop intelligent operator workspaces. The resultant Human-Cyber-Physical Systems (H-CPS) integrate the operators into flexible and multi-purpose manufacturing processes. The primary enabling factor of the resultant Operator 4.0 paradigm is [...] Read more.
The fast development of smart sensors and wearable devices has provided the opportunity to develop intelligent operator workspaces. The resultant Human-Cyber-Physical Systems (H-CPS) integrate the operators into flexible and multi-purpose manufacturing processes. The primary enabling factor of the resultant Operator 4.0 paradigm is the integration of advanced sensor and actuator technologies and communications solutions. This work provides an extensive overview of these technologies and highlights that the design of future workplaces should be based on the concept of intelligent space. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Internet of Things for Smart Infrastructure System)
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Article
Wavelet Decomposition and Convolutional LSTM Networks Based Improved Deep Learning Model for Solar Irradiance Forecasting
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(8), 1286; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8081286 - 01 Aug 2018
Cited by 45
Abstract
Solar photovoltaic (PV) power forecasting has become an important issue with regard to the power grid in terms of the effective integration of large-scale PV plants. As the main influence factor of PV power generation, solar irradiance and its accurate forecasting are the [...] Read more.
Solar photovoltaic (PV) power forecasting has become an important issue with regard to the power grid in terms of the effective integration of large-scale PV plants. As the main influence factor of PV power generation, solar irradiance and its accurate forecasting are the prerequisite for solar PV power forecasting. However, previous forecasting approaches using manual feature extraction (MFE), traditional modeling and single deep learning (DL) models could not satisfy the performance requirements in partial scenarios with complex fluctuations. Therefore, an improved DL model based on wavelet decomposition (WD), the Convolutional Neural Network (CNN), and Long Short-Term Memory (LSTM) is proposed for day-ahead solar irradiance forecasting. Given the high dependency of solar irradiance on weather status, the proposed model is individually established under four general weather type (i.e., sunny, cloudy, rainy and heavy rainy). For certain weather types, the raw solar irradiance sequence is decomposed into several subsequences via discrete wavelet transformation. Then each subsequence is fed into the CNN based local feature extractor to automatically learn the abstract feature representation from the raw subsequence data. Since the extracted features of each subsequence are also time series data, they are individually transported to LSTM to construct the subsequence forecasting model. In the end, the final solar irradiance forecasting results under certain weather types are obtained via the wavelet reconstruction of these forecasted subsequences. This case study further verifies the enhanced forecasting accuracy of our proposed method via a comparison with traditional and single DL models. Full article
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Article
A Novel Image Feature for the Remaining Useful Lifetime Prediction of Bearings Based on Continuous Wavelet Transform and Convolutional Neural Network
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(7), 1102; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8071102 - 08 Jul 2018
Cited by 50
Abstract
In data-driven methods for prognostics, the remaining useful lifetime (RUL) is predicted based on the health indicator (HI). The HI detects the condition of equipment or components by monitoring sensor data such as vibration signals. To construct the HI, multiple features are extracted [...] Read more.
In data-driven methods for prognostics, the remaining useful lifetime (RUL) is predicted based on the health indicator (HI). The HI detects the condition of equipment or components by monitoring sensor data such as vibration signals. To construct the HI, multiple features are extracted from signals using time domain, frequency domain, and time–frequency domain analyses, and which are then fused. However, the process of selecting and fusing features for the HI is very complex and labor-intensive. We propose a novel time–frequency image feature to construct HI and predict the RUL. To convert the one-dimensional vibration signals to a two-dimensional (2-D) image, the continuous wavelet transform (CWT) extracts the time–frequency image features, i.e., the wavelet power spectrum. Then, the obtained image features are fed into a 2-D convolutional neural network (CNN) to construct the HI. The estimated HI from the proposed model is used for the RUL prediction. The accuracy of the RUL prediction is improved by using the image features. The proposed method compresses the complex process including feature extraction, selection, and fusion into a single algorithm by adopting a deep learning approach. The proposed method is validated using a bearing dataset provided by PRONOSTIA. The results demonstrate that the proposed method is superior to related studies using the same dataset. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fault Detection and Diagnosis in Mechatronics Systems)
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Article
Variety Identification of Single Rice Seed Using Hyperspectral Imaging Combined with Convolutional Neural Network
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(2), 212; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8020212 - 31 Jan 2018
Cited by 79
Abstract
The feasibility of using hyperspectral imaging with convolutional neural network (CNN) to identify rice seed varieties was studied. Hyperspectral images of 4 rice seed varieties at two different spectral ranges (380–1030 nm and 874–1734 nm) were acquired. The spectral data at the ranges [...] Read more.
The feasibility of using hyperspectral imaging with convolutional neural network (CNN) to identify rice seed varieties was studied. Hyperspectral images of 4 rice seed varieties at two different spectral ranges (380–1030 nm and 874–1734 nm) were acquired. The spectral data at the ranges of 441–948 nm (Spectral range 1) and 975–1646 nm (Spectral range 2) were extracted. K nearest neighbors (KNN), support vector machine (SVM) and CNN models were built using different number of training samples (100, 200, 300, 400, 500, 600, 700, 800, 900, 1000, 1500, 2000, 2500 and 3000). KNN, SVM and CNN models in the Spectral range 2 performed slightly better than those in the Spectral range 1. The model performances improved with the increase in the number of training samples. The improvements were not significant when the number of training samples was large. CNN model performed better than the corresponding KNN and SVM models in most cases, which indicated the effectiveness of using CNN to analyze spectral data. The results of this study showed that CNN could be adopted in spectral data analysis with promising results. More varieties of rice need to be studied in future research to extend the use of CNNs in spectral data analysis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hyperspectral Chemical Imaging for Food Authentication)
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Article
Energy Management Strategy for a Hybrid Electric Vehicle Based on Deep Reinforcement Learning
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(2), 187; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8020187 - 26 Jan 2018
Cited by 68
Abstract
An energy management strategy (EMS) is important for hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) since it plays a decisive role on the performance of the vehicle. However, the variation of future driving conditions deeply influences the effectiveness of the EMS. Most existing EMS methods simply [...] Read more.
An energy management strategy (EMS) is important for hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) since it plays a decisive role on the performance of the vehicle. However, the variation of future driving conditions deeply influences the effectiveness of the EMS. Most existing EMS methods simply follow predefined rules that are not adaptive to different driving conditions online. Therefore, it is useful that the EMS can learn from the environment or driving cycle. In this paper, a deep reinforcement learning (DRL)-based EMS is designed such that it can learn to select actions directly from the states without any prediction or predefined rules. Furthermore, a DRL-based online learning architecture is presented. It is significant for applying the DRL algorithm in HEV energy management under different driving conditions. Simulation experiments have been conducted using MATLAB and Advanced Vehicle Simulator (ADVISOR) co-simulation. Experimental results validate the effectiveness of the DRL-based EMS compared with the rule-based EMS in terms of fuel economy. The online learning architecture is also proved to be effective. The proposed method ensures the optimality, as well as real-time applicability, in HEVs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Energy)
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Review

Jump to: Research, Other

Review
A Review of the Synthesis and Applications of Polymer–Nanoclay Composites
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(9), 1696; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8091696 - 19 Sep 2018
Cited by 69
Abstract
Recent advancements in material technologies have promoted the development of various preparation strategies and applications of novel polymer–nanoclay composites. Innovative synthesis pathways have resulted in novel polymer–nanoclay composites with improved properties, which have been successfully incorporated in diverse fields such as aerospace, automobile, [...] Read more.
Recent advancements in material technologies have promoted the development of various preparation strategies and applications of novel polymer–nanoclay composites. Innovative synthesis pathways have resulted in novel polymer–nanoclay composites with improved properties, which have been successfully incorporated in diverse fields such as aerospace, automobile, construction, petroleum, biomedical and wastewater treatment. These composites are recognized as promising advanced materials due to their superior properties, such as enhanced density, strength, relatively large surface areas, high elastic modulus, flame retardancy, and thermomechanical/optoelectronic/magnetic properties. The primary focus of this review is to deliver an up-to-date overview of polymer–nanoclay composites along with their synthesis routes and applications. The discussion highlights potential future directions for this emerging field of research. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanoclays for Technological Applications)
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Review
Mini-LED and Micro-LED: Promising Candidates for the Next Generation Display Technology
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(9), 1557; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8091557 - 05 Sep 2018
Cited by 177
Abstract
Displays based on inorganic light-emitting diodes (LED) are considered as the most promising one among the display technologies for the next-generation. The chip for LED display bears similar features to those currently in use for general lighting, but it size is shrunk to [...] Read more.
Displays based on inorganic light-emitting diodes (LED) are considered as the most promising one among the display technologies for the next-generation. The chip for LED display bears similar features to those currently in use for general lighting, but it size is shrunk to below 200 microns. Thus, the advantages of high efficiency and long life span of conventional LED chips are inherited by miniaturized ones. As the size gets smaller, the resolution enhances, but at the expense of elevating the complexity of fabrication. In this review, we introduce two sorts of inorganic LED displays, namely relatively large and small varieties. The mini-LEDs with chip sizes ranging from 100 to 200 μm have already been commercialized for backlight sources in consumer electronics applications. The realized local diming can greatly improve the contrast ratio at relatively low energy consumptions. The micro-LEDs with chip size less than 100 μm, still remain in the laboratory. The full-color solution, one of the key technologies along with its three main components, red, green, and blue chips, as well color conversion, and optical lens synthesis, are introduced in detail. Moreover, this review provides an account for contemporary technologies as well as a clear view of inorganic and miniaturized LED displays for the display community. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Group III-V Nitride Semiconductor Microcavities and Microemitters)
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Review
Swarm Intelligence Algorithms for Feature Selection: A Review
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(9), 1521; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8091521 - 01 Sep 2018
Cited by 78
Abstract
The increasingly rapid creation, sharing and exchange of information nowadays put researchers and data scientists ahead of a challenging task of data analysis and extracting relevant information out of data. To be able to learn from data, the dimensionality of the data should [...] Read more.
The increasingly rapid creation, sharing and exchange of information nowadays put researchers and data scientists ahead of a challenging task of data analysis and extracting relevant information out of data. To be able to learn from data, the dimensionality of the data should be reduced first. Feature selection (FS) can help to reduce the amount of data, but it is a very complex and computationally demanding task, especially in the case of high-dimensional datasets. Swarm intelligence (SI) has been proved as a technique which can solve NP-hard (Non-deterministic Polynomial time) computational problems. It is gaining popularity in solving different optimization problems and has been used successfully for FS in some applications. With the lack of comprehensive surveys in this field, it was our objective to fill the gap in coverage of SI algorithms for FS. We performed a comprehensive literature review of SI algorithms and provide a detailed overview of 64 different SI algorithms for FS, organized into eight major taxonomic categories. We propose a unified SI framework and use it to explain different approaches to FS. Different methods, techniques, and their settings are explained, which have been used for various FS aspects. The datasets used most frequently for the evaluation of SI algorithms for FS are presented, as well as the most common application areas. The guidelines on how to develop SI approaches for FS are provided to support researchers and analysts in their data mining tasks and endeavors while existing issues and open questions are being discussed. In this manner, using the proposed framework and the provided explanations, one should be able to design an SI approach to be used for a specific FS problem. Full article
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Review
Graphene Nanoplatelets-Based Advanced Materials and Recent Progress in Sustainable Applications
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(9), 1438; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8091438 - 23 Aug 2018
Cited by 76
Abstract
Graphene is the first 2D crystal ever isolated by mankind. It consists of a single graphite layer, and its exceptional properties are revolutionizing material science. However, there is still a lack of convenient mass-production methods to obtain defect-free monolayer graphene. In contrast, graphene [...] Read more.
Graphene is the first 2D crystal ever isolated by mankind. It consists of a single graphite layer, and its exceptional properties are revolutionizing material science. However, there is still a lack of convenient mass-production methods to obtain defect-free monolayer graphene. In contrast, graphene nanoplatelets, hybrids between graphene and graphite, are already industrially available. Such nanomaterials are attractive, considering their planar structure, light weight, high aspect ratio, electrical conductivity, low cost, and mechanical toughness. These diverse features enable applications ranging from energy harvesting and electronic skin to reinforced plastic materials. This review presents progress in composite materials with graphene nanoplatelets applied, among others, in the field of flexible electronics and motion and structural sensing. Particular emphasis is given to applications such as antennas, flexible electrodes for energy devices, and strain sensors. A separate discussion is included on advanced biodegradable materials reinforced with graphene nanoplatelets. A discussion of the necessary steps for the further spread of graphene nanoplatelets is provided for each revised field. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Graphene Nanoplatelets)
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Review
A Review of AlGaN-Based Deep-Ultraviolet Light-Emitting Diodes on Sapphire
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(8), 1264; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8081264 - 31 Jul 2018
Cited by 73
Abstract
This paper reviews the progress of AlGaN-based deep-ultraviolet (DUV) light emitting diodes (LEDs), mainly focusing in the work of the authors’ group. The background to the development of the current device structure on sapphire is described and the reason for using a (0001) [...] Read more.
This paper reviews the progress of AlGaN-based deep-ultraviolet (DUV) light emitting diodes (LEDs), mainly focusing in the work of the authors’ group. The background to the development of the current device structure on sapphire is described and the reason for using a (0001) sapphire with a miscut angle of 1.0° relative to the m-axis is clarified. Our LEDs incorporate uneven quantum wells (QWs) grown on an AlN template with dense macrosteps. Due to the low threading dislocation density of AlGaN and AlN templates of about 5 × 108/cm2, the number of nonradiative recombination centers is decreased. In addition, the uneven QW show high external quantum efficiency (EQE) and wall-plug efficiency, which are considered to be boosted by the increased internal quantum efficiency (IQE) by enhancing carrier localization adjacent to macrosteps. The achieved LED performance is considered to be sufficient for practical applications. The advantage of the uneven QW is discussed in terms of the EQE and IQE. A DUV-LED die with an output of over 100 mW at 280–300 nm is considered feasible by applying techniques including the encapsulation. In addition, the fundamental achievements of various groups are reviewed for the future improvements of AlGaN-based DUV-LEDs. Finally, the applications of DUV-LEDs are described from an industrial viewpoint. The demonstrations of W/cm2-class irradiation modules are shown for UV curing. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Highly Efficient UV and Visible Light Sources)
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Review
Research Progress of Gas Sensor Based on Graphene and Its Derivatives: A Review
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(7), 1118; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8071118 - 11 Jul 2018
Cited by 50
Abstract
Gas sensors are devices that convert a gas volume fraction into electrical signals, and they are widely used in many fields such as environmental monitoring. Graphene is a new type of two-dimensional crystal material that has many excellent properties including large specific surface [...] Read more.
Gas sensors are devices that convert a gas volume fraction into electrical signals, and they are widely used in many fields such as environmental monitoring. Graphene is a new type of two-dimensional crystal material that has many excellent properties including large specific surface area, high conductivity, and high Young’s modulus. These features make it ideally suitable for application for gas sensors. In this paper, the main characteristics of gas sensor are firstly introduced, followed by the preparation methods and properties of graphene. In addition, the development process and the state of graphene gas sensors are introduced emphatically in terms of structure and performance of the sensor. The emergence of new candidates including graphene, polymer and metal/metal oxide composite enhances the performance of gas detection significantly. Finally, the clear direction of graphene gas sensors for the future is provided according to the latest research results and trends. It provides direction and ideas for future research. Full article
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Review
Bimetallic Nanoparticles: Enhanced Magnetic and Optical Properties for Emerging Biological Applications
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(7), 1106; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8071106 - 09 Jul 2018
Cited by 79
Abstract
Metal nanoparticles are extensively studied due to their unique chemical and physical properties, which differ from the properties of their respective bulk materials. Likewise, the properties of heterogeneous bimetallic structures are far more attractive than those of single-component nanoparticles. For example, the incorporation [...] Read more.
Metal nanoparticles are extensively studied due to their unique chemical and physical properties, which differ from the properties of their respective bulk materials. Likewise, the properties of heterogeneous bimetallic structures are far more attractive than those of single-component nanoparticles. For example, the incorporation of a second metal into a nanoparticle structure influences and can potentially enhance the optical/plasmonic and magnetic properties of the material. This review focuses on the enhanced optical/plasmonic and magnetic properties offered by bimetallic nanoparticles and their corresponding impact on biological applications. In this review, we summarize the predominant structures of bimetallic nanoparticles, outline their synthesis methods, and highlight their use in biological applications, both diagnostic and therapeutic, which are dictated by their various optical/plasmonic and magnetic properties. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biological Applications of Magnetic Nanoparticles)
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Review
Review of Auxetic Materials for Sports Applications: Expanding Options in Comfort and Protection
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(6), 941; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8060941 - 06 Jun 2018
Cited by 79
Abstract
Following high profile, life changing long term mental illnesses and fatalities in sports such as skiing, cricket and American football—sports injuries feature regularly in national and international news. A mismatch between equipment certification tests, user expectations and infield falls and collisions is thought [...] Read more.
Following high profile, life changing long term mental illnesses and fatalities in sports such as skiing, cricket and American football—sports injuries feature regularly in national and international news. A mismatch between equipment certification tests, user expectations and infield falls and collisions is thought to affect risk perception, increasing the prevalence and severity of injuries. Auxetic foams, structures and textiles have been suggested for application to sporting goods, particularly protective equipment, due to their unique form-fitting deformation and curvature, high energy absorption and high indentation resistance. The purpose of this critical review is to communicate how auxetics could be useful to sports equipment (with a focus on injury prevention), and clearly lay out the steps required to realise their expected benefits. Initial overviews of auxetic materials and sporting protective equipment are followed by a description of common auxetic materials and structures, and how to produce them in foams, textiles and Additively Manufactured structures. Beneficial characteristics, limitations and commercial prospects are discussed, leading to a consideration of possible further work required to realise potential uses (such as in personal protective equipment and highly conformable garments). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sports Materials)
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Review
A State-of-the-Art Review of Nanoparticles Application in Petroleum with a Focus on Enhanced Oil Recovery
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(6), 871; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8060871 - 25 May 2018
Cited by 86
Abstract
Research on nanotechnology application in the oil and gas industry has been growing rapidly in the past decade, as evidenced by the number of scientific articles published in the field. With oil and gas reserves harder to find, access, and produce, the pursuit [...] Read more.
Research on nanotechnology application in the oil and gas industry has been growing rapidly in the past decade, as evidenced by the number of scientific articles published in the field. With oil and gas reserves harder to find, access, and produce, the pursuit of more game-changing technologies that can address the challenges of the industry has stimulated this growth. Nanotechnology has the potential to revolutionize the petroleum industry both upstream and downstream, including exploration, drilling, production, and enhanced oil recovery (EOR), as well as refinery processes. It provides a wide range of alternatives for technologies and materials to be utilized in the petroleum industry. Nanoscale materials in various forms such as solid composites, complex fluids, and functional nanoparticle-fluid combinations are key to the new technological advances. This paper aims to provide a state-of-the-art review on the application of nanoparticles and technology in the petroleum industry, and focuses on enhanced oil recovery. We briefly summarize nanotechnology application in exploration and reservoir characterization, drilling and completion, production and stimulation, and refinery. Thereafter, this paper focuses on the application of nanoparticles in EOR. The different types of nanomaterials, e.g., silica, aluminum oxides, iron oxide, nickel oxide, titanium oxide, zinc oxide, zirconium oxide, polymers, and carbon nanotubes that have been studied in EOR are discussed with respect to their properties, their performance, advantages, and disadvantages. We then elaborate upon the parameters that will affect the performance of nanoparticles in EOR, and guidelines for promising recovery factors are emphasized. The mechanisms of the nanoparticles in the EOR processes are then underlined, such as wettability alteration, interfacial tension reduction, disjoining pressure, and viscosity control. The objective of this review is to present a wide range of knowledge and expertise related to the nanotechnology application in the petroleum industry in general, and the EOR process in particular. The challenges and future research directions for nano-EOR are pinpointed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanotech for Oil and Gas)
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Review
Overview of Lithium-Ion Battery Modeling Methods for State-of-Charge Estimation in Electrical Vehicles
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(5), 659; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8050659 - 25 Apr 2018
Cited by 62
Abstract
As a critical indictor in the Battery Management System (BMS), State of Charge (SOC) is closely related to the reliable and safe operation of lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries. Model-based methods are an effective solution for accurate and robust SOC estimation, the performance of which [...] Read more.
As a critical indictor in the Battery Management System (BMS), State of Charge (SOC) is closely related to the reliable and safe operation of lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries. Model-based methods are an effective solution for accurate and robust SOC estimation, the performance of which heavily relies on the battery model. This paper mainly focuses on battery modeling methods, which have the potential to be used in a model-based SOC estimation structure. Battery modeling methods are classified into four categories on the basis of their theoretical foundations, and their expressions and features are detailed. Furthermore, the four battery modeling methods are compared in terms of their pros and cons. Future research directions are also presented. In addition, after optimizing the parameters of the battery models by a Genetic Algorithm (GA), four typical battery models including a combined model, two RC Equivalent Circuit Model (ECM), a Single Particle Model (SPM), and a Support Vector Machine (SVM) battery model are compared in terms of their accuracy and execution time. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Battery Management and State Estimation)
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Review
Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS)-Based Flexible Resistive Strain Sensors for Wearable Applications
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 345; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8030345 - 28 Feb 2018
Cited by 68
Abstract
There is growing attention and rapid development on flexible electronic devices with electronic materials and sensing technology innovations. In particular, strain sensors with high elasticity and stretchability are needed for several potential applications including human entertainment technology, human–machine interface, personal healthcare, and sports [...] Read more.
There is growing attention and rapid development on flexible electronic devices with electronic materials and sensing technology innovations. In particular, strain sensors with high elasticity and stretchability are needed for several potential applications including human entertainment technology, human–machine interface, personal healthcare, and sports performance monitoring, etc. This article presents recent advancements in the development of polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS)-based flexible resistive strain sensors for wearable applications. First of all, the article shows that PDMS-based stretchable resistive strain sensors are successfully fabricated by different methods, such as the filtration method, printing technology, micromolding method, coating techniques, and liquid phase mixing. Next, strain sensing performances including stretchability, gauge factor, linearity, and durability are comprehensively demonstrated and compared. Finally, potential applications of PDMS-based flexible resistive strain sensors are also discussed. This review indicates that the era of wearable intelligent electronic systems has arrived. Full article
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Review
Inkjet-Printed and Paper-Based Electrochemical Sensors
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(2), 288; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8020288 - 14 Feb 2018
Cited by 50
Abstract
It is becoming increasingly more important to provide a low-cost point-of-care diagnostic device with the ability to detect and monitor various biological and chemical compounds. Traditional laboratories can be time-consuming and very costly. Through the combination of well-established materials and fabrication methods, it [...] Read more.
It is becoming increasingly more important to provide a low-cost point-of-care diagnostic device with the ability to detect and monitor various biological and chemical compounds. Traditional laboratories can be time-consuming and very costly. Through the combination of well-established materials and fabrication methods, it is possible to produce devices that meet the needs of many patients, healthcare and medical professionals, and environmental specialists. Existing research has demonstrated that inkjet-printed and paper-based electrochemical sensors are suitable for this application due to advantages provided by the carefully selected materials and fabrication method. Inkjet printing provides a low cost fabrication method with incredible control over the material deposition process, while paper-based substrates enable pump-free microfluidic devices due to their natural wicking ability. Furthermore, electrochemical sensing is incredibly selective and provides accurate and repeatable quantitative results without expensive measurement equipment. By merging each of these favorable techniques and materials and continuing to innovate, the production of low-cost point-of-care sensors is certainly within reach. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Printed Electronics 2017)
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Letter
Small Object Detection in Optical Remote Sensing Images via Modified Faster R-CNN
Appl. Sci. 2018, 8(5), 813; https://doi.org/10.3390/app8050813 - 18 May 2018
Cited by 97
Abstract
The PASCAL VOC Challenge performance has been significantly boosted by the prevalently CNN-based pipelines like Faster R-CNN. However, directly applying the Faster R-CNN to the small remote sensing objects usually renders poor performance. To address this issue, this paper investigates on how to [...] Read more.
The PASCAL VOC Challenge performance has been significantly boosted by the prevalently CNN-based pipelines like Faster R-CNN. However, directly applying the Faster R-CNN to the small remote sensing objects usually renders poor performance. To address this issue, this paper investigates on how to modify Faster R-CNN for the task of small object detection in optical remote sensing images. First of all, we not only modify the RPN stage of Faster R-CNN by setting appropriate anchors but also leverage a single high-level feature map of a fine resolution by designing a similar architecture adopting top-down and skip connections. In addition, we incorporate context information to further boost small remote sensing object detection performance while we apply a simple sampling strategy to solve the issue about the imbalanced numbers of images between different classes. At last, we introduce a simple yet effective data augmentation method named ‘random rotation’ during training. Experimental results show that our modified Faster R-CNN algorithm improves the mean average precision by a large margin on detecting small remote sensing objects. Full article
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