Open Science Research Excellence

Open Science Index

Commenced in January 2007 Frequency: Monthly Edition: International Paper Count: 57

Students’ Perceptions of the Use of Social Media in Higher Education in Saudi Arabia
This paper examined the attitudes of using social media tools to support learning at a university in Saudi Arabia. Moreover, it investigated the students’ current usage of these tools and examined the barriers they could face during the use of social media tools in the education process. Participants in this study were 42 university students. A web-based survey was used to collect data for this study. The results indicate that all of the students were familiar with social media and had used at least one type of social media for learning. It was found out that all students had very positive attitudes towards the use of social media and welcomed using these tools as a supplementary to the curriculum. However, the results indicated that the major barriers to using these tools in learning were distraction, opposing Islamic religious teachings, privacy issues, and cyberbullying. The study recommended that this study could be replicated at other Saudi universities to investigate factors and barriers that might affect Saudi students’ attitudes toward using social media to support learning.
Designing a Pre-Assessment Tool to Support the Achievement of Green Building Certifications

The impact of common buildings on climate and environment has prompted people to get involved in the green building standards aimed at implementing rating tools or certifications. Thus, green building rating systems were introduced to the construction industry, and the demand for certified green buildings has increased gradually and succeeded considerably in enhancing people’s environmental awareness. However, the existing certification process has been unsatisfactory in attracting stakeholders and/or professionals who are actively engaged in adopting a rating system. It is because they have faced recurring barriers regarding limited information in understanding the rating process, time-consuming procedures and higher costs, which have a direct influence on pursuing green building rating systems. To promote the achievement of green building certifications within the building industry more successfully, this paper aims at designing a Pre-Assessment Tool (PAT) framework that can help stakeholders and/or professionals engaged in the construction industry to clarify their basic knowledge, timeframe and extra costs needed to activate a green building certification. First, taking the first steps towards the rating tool seems to be complicated because of upfront commitment to understanding the overall rating procedure is required. This conceptual PAT framework can increase basic knowledge of the rating tool and the certification process, mainly in terms of all resources or information of each credit requirements. Second, the assessment process of rating tools is generally known as a “lengthy and time-consuming system”, contributing to unenthusiastic reactions concerning green building projects. The proposed framework can predict the timeframe needed to identify how long it will take for a green project to process each credit requirement and the documentation required from the beginning of the certification process to final approval. Finally, most people often have the initial perception that pursuing green building certification costs more than constructing a non-green building, which makes it more difficult to execute rating tools. To overcome this issue, this PAT will help users to estimate the extra expenses such as certification fees and third-party contributions based on the track of the amount of time it takes to implement the rating tool throughout all the related stages. Also, it can prevent unexpected or hidden costs occurring in the process of assessment. Therefore, this proposed PAT framework can be recommended as an effective method to support the decision-making of inexperienced users and play an important role in promoting green building certification.

Sensitivity Analysis of External-Rotor Permanent Magnet Assisted Synchronous Reluctance Motor

In this paper, a proper approach is taken to assess a set of the most effective rotor design parameters for an external-rotor permanent magnet assisted synchronous reluctance motor (PMaSynRM) and therefore to tackle the design complexity of the rotor structure. There are different advantages for introducing permanent magnets into the rotor flux barriers, some of which are to saturate the rotor iron ribs, to increase the motor torque density and to improve the power factor. Moreover, the d-axis and q-axis inductances are of great importance to simultaneously achieve maximum developed torque and low torque ripple. Therefore, sensitivity analysis of the rotor geometry of an 8-pole external-rotor permanent magnet assisted synchronous reluctance motor is performed. Several magnetically accurate finite element analyses (FEA) are conducted to characterize the electromagnetic performance of the motor. The analyses validate torque and power factor equations for the proposed external-rotor motor. Based upon the obtained results and due to an additional term, permanent magnet torque, added to the reluctance torque, the electromagnetic torque of the PMaSynRM increases.

Characteristics of the Severe Rollover Crashes in the UAE Using In-Depth Crash Investigation Data

Rollover crashes are complex events entailing interactions of driver, road, vehicle, and environmental factors. The primary objective of this paper is to present an empirical approach that can be used to characterise the rollover crashes and to identify some of the important factors that may lead to rollovers. Among the studied factors are the vehicle types and the rollover occurrence rate after hitting various barrier types. The carried analysis indicated that 71% of the rollover crashes occurred after impact and the type of rollover initiation is “trip/turn over” (nearly 50%). It was also found that light trucks (LTVs) vehicles are more likely to rollover than the sedan vehicles. Barrier impacts are associated with increased incidence of rollover.

Exploring Socio-Economic Barriers of Green Entrepreneurship in Iran and Their Interactions Using Interpretive Structural Modeling

Entrepreneurship at both individual and organizational level is one of the most driving forces in economic development and leads to growth and competition, job generation and social development. Especially in developing countries, the role of entrepreneurship in economic and social prosperity is more emphasized. But the effect of global economic development on the environment is undeniable, especially in negative ways, and there is a need to rethink current business models and the way entrepreneurs act to introduce new businesses to address and embed environmental issues in order to achieve sustainable development. In this paper, green or sustainable entrepreneurship is addressed in Iran to identify challenges and barriers entrepreneurs in the economic and social sectors face in developing green business solutions. Sustainable or green entrepreneurship has been gaining interest among scholars in recent years and addressing its challenges and barriers need much more attention to fill the gap in the literature and facilitate the way those entrepreneurs are pursuing. This research comprised of two main phases: qualitative and quantitative. At qualitative phase, after a thorough literature review, fuzzy Delphi method is utilized to verify those challenges and barriers by gathering a panel of experts and surveying them. In this phase, several other contextually related factors were added to the list of identified barriers and challenges mentioned in the literature. Then, at the quantitative phase, Interpretive Structural Modeling is applied to construct a network of interactions among those barriers identified at the previous phase. Again, a panel of subject matter experts comprised of academic and industry experts was surveyed. The results of this study can be used by policymakers in both the public and industry sector, to introduce more systematic solutions to eliminate those barriers and help entrepreneurs overcome challenges of sustainable entrepreneurship. It also contributes to the literature as the first research in this type which deals with the barriers of sustainable entrepreneurship and explores their interaction.

Examination of Internally and Externally Coated Cr3C2 Exhaust Pipe of a Diesel Engine via Plasma Spray Method

In this experimental study; internal and external parts of an exhaust pipe were coated with a chromium carbide (Cr3C2) material having a thickness of 100 micron by using the plasma spray method. A diesel engine was used as the test engine. Thus, the results of continuing chemical reaction in coated and uncoated exhaust pipes were investigated. Internally and externally coated exhaust pipe was compared with the standard exhaust system. External heat transfer occurring as a result of coating the internal and external parts of the exhaust pipe was reduced and its effects on harmful exhaust emissions were investigated. As a result of the experiments; a remarkable improvement was determined in emission values as a result of delay in cooling of exhaust gases due to the coating.

Fabrication of High-Power AlGaN/GaN Schottky Barrier Diode with Field Plate Design

In this letter, we demonstrate high-performance AlGaN/GaN planar Schottky barrier diodes (SBDs) on the silicon substrate with field plate structure for increasing breakdown voltage VB. A low turn-on resistance RON (3.55 mΩ-cm2), low reverse leakage current (< 0.1 µA) at -100 V, and high reverse breakdown voltage VB (> 1.1 kV) SBD has been fabricated. A virgin SBD exhibited a breakdown voltage (measured at 1 mA/mm) of 615 V, and with the field plate technology device exhibited a breakdown voltage (measured at 1 mA/mm) of 1525 V (the anode–cathode distance was LAC = 40 µm). Devices without the field plate design exhibit a Baliga’s figure of merit of VB2/ RON = 60.2 MW/cm2, whereas devices with the field plate design show a Baliga’s figure of merit of VB2/ RON = 340.9 MW/cm2 (the anode–cathode distance was LAC = 20 µm).

Characteristics of Ozone Generated from Dielectric Barrier Discharge Plasma Actuators
Dielectric barrier discharge plasma actuators (DBD-PAs) have been developed for active flow control devices. However, it is necessary to reduce ozone produced by DBD toward practical applications using DBD-PAs. In this study, variations of ozone concentration, flow velocity, power consumption were investigated by changing exposed electrodes of DBD-PAs. Two exposed electrode prototypes were prepared: span-type with exposed electrode width of 0.1 mm, and normal-type with width of 5 mm. It was found that span-type shows lower power consumption and higher flow velocity than that of normal-type at Vp-p = 4.0-6.0 kV. Ozone concentration of span-type higher than normal-type at Vp-p = 4.0-8.0 kV. In addition, it was confirmed that catalyst located in downstream from the exposed electrode can reduce ozone concentration between 18 and 42% without affecting the induced flow.
The Requirements of Developing a Framework for Successful Adoption of Quality Management Systems in the Construction Industry
Quality management systems (QMSs) in the construction industry are often implemented to ensure that sufficient effort is made by companies to achieve the required levels of quality for clients. Attainment of these quality levels can result in greater customer satisfaction, which is fundamental to ensure long-term competitiveness for construction companies. However, the construction sector is still lagging behind other industries in terms of its successful adoption of QMSs, due to the relative lack of acceptance of the benefits of these systems among industry stakeholders, as well as from other barriers related to implementing them. Thus, there is a critical need to undertake a detailed and comprehensive exploration of adoption of QMSs in the construction sector. This paper comprehensively investigates in the construction sector setting, the impacts of all the salient factors surrounding successful implementation of QMSs in building organizations, especially those of external factors. This study is part of an ongoing PhD project, which aims to develop a new framework that integrates both internal and external factors affecting QMS implementation. To achieve the paper aim and objectives, interviews will be conducted to define the external factors influencing the adoption of QMSs, and to obtain holistic critical success factors (CSFs) for implementing these systems. In the next stage of data collection, a questionnaire survey will be developed to investigate the prime barriers facing the adoption of QMSs, the CSFs for their implementation, and the external factors affecting the adoption of these systems. Following the survey, case studies will be undertaken to validate and explain in greater detail the real effects of these factors on QMSs adoption. Specifically, this paper evaluates the effects of the external factors in terms of their impact on implementation success within the selected case studies. Using findings drawn from analyzing the data obtained from these various approaches, specific recommendations for the successful implementation of QMSs will be presented, and an operational framework will be developed. Finally, through a focus group, the findings of the study and the new developed framework will be validated. Ultimately, this framework will be made available to the construction industry to facilitate the greater adoption and implementation of QMSs. In addition, deployment of the applicable recommendations suggested by the study will be shared with the construction industry to more effectively help construction companies to implement QMSs, and overcome the barriers experienced by businesses, thus promoting the achievement of higher levels of quality and customer satisfaction.
Relationship-Centred Care in Cross-Linguistic Medical Encounters

This study explores the experiences of cross-linguistic medical encounters by patients, and their views of receiving language support therein, with a particular focus on Japanese-English cases. The aim of this study is to investigate the reason for the frequent use of a spouse as a communication mediator from a Japanese perspective, through a comparison with that of English speakers. This study conducts an empirical qualitative analysis of the accounts of informants. A total of 31 informants who have experienced Japanese-English cross-linguistic medical encounters were recruited in Australia and Japan for semi-structured in-depth interviews. A breakdown of informants is 15 English speakers and 16 Japanese speakers. In order to obtain a further insight into collected data, additional interviews were held with 4 Australian doctors who are familiar with using interpreters. This study was approved by the Australian National University Human Research Ethics Committee, and written consent to participate in this study was obtained from all participants. The interviews lasted up to over one hour. They were audio-recorded and subsequently transcribed by the author. Japanese transcriptions were translated into English by the author. An analysis of interview data found that patients value relationship in communication. Particularly, Japanese informants, who have an English-speaking spouse, value trust-based communication interventions by their spouse, regardless of the language proficiency of the spouse. In Australia, health care interpreters are required to abide by the national code of ethics for interpreters. The Code defines the role of an interpreter exclusively to be language rendition and enshrines the tenets of accuracy, confidentiality and professional role boundaries. However, the analysis found that an interpreter who strictly complies with the Code sometimes fails to render the real intentions of the patient and their doctor. Findings from the study suggest that an interpreter should not be detached from the context and should be more engaged in the needs of patients. Their needs are not always communicated by an interpreter when they simply follow a professional code of ethics. The concept of relationship-centred care should be incorporated in the professional practice of health care interpreters.

An Evaluation of Barriers to Implement Reverse Logistics: A Case Study of Indian Fastener Industry
Reverse logistics (RL) is supposed to be a systematic procedure that helps in improving the environmental hazards and maintain business sustainability for industries. Industries in Indian are now opting for adoption of RL techniques in business. But, RL practices are not popular in Indian industries because of many barriers for its successful implementation. Therefore, need arises to identify and evaluate the barriers to implement RL practices by taking an Indian industries perspective. Literature review approach and case study approach have been adapted to identify relevant barriers to implement RL practices. Further, Fuzzy Decision Making Trial and Evaluation Laboratory methodology has been brought into use for evaluating causal relationships among the barriers to implement RL practices. Seven barriers out of ten barriers have been categorized into the cause group and remaining into effect group. This research will help Indian industries to manage these barriers towards effective implementing RL practices.
Omani Community in Digital Age: A Study of Omani Women Using Back Channel Media to Empower Themselves for Frontline Entrepreneurship

This research article presents the changing role and status of women in Oman. Transformation of women’s status started with the regime of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos Bin Said in 1970. It is always desired by the Sultan to enable women in all the ways for the balance growth of the country. Forbidding full face veil for women in public offices is one of the best efforts for their empowerment. Women education is also increasing rapidly. They are getting friendly with new information communication technology and using different social media applications such as WhatsApp, Instagram and Facebook for interaction and economic growth. Though there are some traditional and tribal boundaries, women are infused with courage and enjoying fair treatment and equal opportunities in different career positions. The study will try to explore changing mindset of young Omani women towards these traditional tribal boundaries, cultural heritage, business and career: ‘How are young Omani women making balance between work and social prestige?’, ‘How are they preserving their cultural values, embracing new technologies and approaching social network to enhance their economic power.’ This paper will discover their hurdles while using internet for their new entrepreneur. It will also examine the prospects of online business in Oman. The mixed research methodology is applied to find out the result.

Barriers to Marital Expectation among Individuals with Hearing Impairment in Oyo State

The study was designed to examine the barriers to marital expectations among unmarried persons with hearing impairment in Oyo State, Nigeria. Descriptive survey research design was adopted. Purposive sampling technique was used to select one hundred participants made up forty-four (44) males and fifty-six (56) females, all with varying degrees of hearing impairment. Eight research questions were raised and answered. The instrument used was Marital Expectations Scale with reliability coefficient of 0.86. Data was analyzed using descriptive statistics tools of frequency count and simple percentage as well as inferential statistics tools of T-TEST and ANOVA. The findings revealed that there was a significant relationship existing among the main identified barriers (environmental barrier, communication barrier, hearing loss, unemployment and poor sexuality education) to the marital expectations of unmarried persons with hearing impairment. The joint contribution of the independent variables (identified barriers) to the dependent variable (marital expectations) was significant, F = 5.842, P < 0.05, accounting for about 89% of the variance. The relative contribution of the identified barriers to marital expectations of unmarried persons with hearing impairment is as follows: environmental barrier (β = 0.808, t = 5.176, P < 0.05), communication barrier (β = 0.533, t = 3.305, P < 0.05), hearing loss (β = 0.550, t = 2.233, P < 0.05), unemployment (β = 0.431, t = 2.102, P < 0.05), poor sexuality education (β = 0.361, t = 1.985, P < 0.05). Environmental barrier proved to be the most potent contributor to the poor marital expectations among unmarried persons with hearing impairment. Therefore, it is recommended that society dismantles the nagging environmental barrier through positive identification with individuals suffering from hearing impairment. In this connection, members of society should change their negative attitudes and do away with all the wrong notions about the marital ability of individuals with hearing impairment.

Accounting Information Systems of Kuwaiti Companies: Obstacles and Barriers
The aim of this paper is to identify and discuss the obstacles to the ability of the accounting information systems of Kuwaiti companies to deal with electronic commerce, and then to propose appropriate solutions to overcome the barriers. The study revealed a remarkable decrease in external auditors who have professional certification. The results also showed an agreement regarding the accounting systems and the ability to deal with e-commerce, with a different degree of importance, despite the presence of obstacles to the ability of accounting systems in dealing with different companies.
Identifying the Barriers behind the Lack of Six Sigma Use in Libyan Manufacturing Companies

This paper investigates the barriers behind the underutilisation of six sigma in Libyan manufacturing companies (LMCs). A mixed-method methodology is proposed, starting by conducting interviews to collect qualitative data followed by the development of a questionnaire to obtain quantitative data. The focus of this paper is on discussing the findings of the interview stage and how these can be used to further develop the questionnaire stage. The interview results showed that only four key barriers were highlighted as being encountered by LMCs. With a difference in terms of their significance, these factors were identified, and placed in descending order according to their importance, namely: “Lack of top management commitment”, “Lack of training”, “Lack of knowledge about six sigma”, and “Culture effect”. The findings also showed that some barriers which, were found in previous studies of six sigma implementation were not considered as barriers to LMCs but can, in fact, be considered as success factors or enablers for six sigma adoption. These factors were identified as: “sufficiency of time and financial resources”; “customers unsatisfied”; “good communication between all departments in the company”; “we are certain about its results and benefits to our company and unhappy with the current quality system”. These results suggest that LMCs face fewer barriers to adopting six sigma than many well-established global companies operating in other countries and could take advantage of these successful factors by developing and implementing a six sigma framework to improve their product quality and competitiveness.

Lean Healthcare: Barriers and Enablers in the Colombian Context
Lean philosophy has evolved over time and has been implemented both in manufacturing and services, more recently lean has been integrated in the companies of the health sector. Currently it is important to understand the successful way to implement this philosophy and try to identify barriers and enablers to the sustainability of lean healthcare. The main purpose of this research is to identify the barriers and enablers in the implementation of Lean Healthcare based on case studies of Colombian healthcare centers. In order to do so, we conducted semi-structured interviews based on a maturity model. The main results indicate that the success of Lean implementation depends on its adaptation to contextual factors. In addition, in the Colombian context were identified new factors such as organizational culture, management models, integration of the care and administrative departments and triple helix relationship.
Resistance to Change as a Lever of Innovation: Case of Tangier, Tetouan and Hoceima Region, Morocco

For any company or organization, change must be natural and binding in order to evolve its business, protect its durability and remain competitive. "Adapt or disappear". But how often managers, leaders or employees develop astonishing ideas that could improve several aspects of the organization and the feedback is less that encouraging and people give unrealistic judgments just to escape change. In this paper, we are going to discuss what we do know about change and resistance to change and what we can do to tame this phenomenon and, above all, the main steps that can follow an idea man in the delicate and decisive implementation of innovations.

Design Criteria for Achieving Acceptable Indoor Radon Concentration
Design criteria for achieving an acceptable indoor radon concentration are presented in this paper. The paper suggests three design criteria. These criteria have to be considered at the early stage of the building design phase to meet the latest recommendations from the World Health Organization in most countries. The three design criteria are; first, establishing a radon barrier facing the ground; second, lowering the air pressure in the lower zone of the slab on ground facing downwards; third, diluting the indoor air with outdoor air. The first two criteria can prevent radon from infiltrating from the ground, and the third criteria can dilute the indoor air. By combining these three criteria, the indoor radon concentration can be lowered achieving an acceptable level. In addition, a cheap and reliable method for measuring the radon concentration in the indoor air is described. The provision on radon in the Danish Building Regulations complies with the latest recommendations from the World Health Organization. Radon can cause lung cancer and it is not known whether there is a lower limit for when it is not harmful to human beings. Therefore, it is important to reduce the radon concentration as much as possible in buildings. Airtightness is an important factor when dealing with buildings. It is important to avoid air leakages in the building envelope both facing the atmosphere, e.g. in compliance with energy requirements, but also facing the ground, to meet the requirements to ensure and control the indoor environment. Infiltration of air from the ground underneath a building is the main providing source of radon to the indoor air.
In Search of Innovation: Exploring the Dynamics of Innovation
HMS Industrial Networks AB has been recognized as one of the most innovative companies in the industrial communication industry worldwide. The creation of their Anybus innovation during the 1990s contributed considerably to the company’s success. From inception, HMS’ employees were innovating for the purpose of creating new business (the creation phase). After the Anybus innovation, they began the process of internationalization (the commercialization phase), which in turn led them to concentrate on cost reduction, product quality, delivery precision, operational efficiency, and increasing growth (the growth phase). As a result of this transformation, performing new radical innovations have become more complicated. The purpose of our research was to explore the dynamics of innovation at HMS from the aspect of key actors, activities, and events, over the three phases, in order to understand what led to the creation of their Anybus innovation, and why it has become increasingly challenging for HMS to create new radical innovations for the future. Our research methodology was based on a longitudinal, retrospective study from the inception of HMS in 1988 to 2014, a single case study inspired by the grounded theory approach. We conducted 47 interviews and collected 1 024 historical documents for our research. Our analysis has revealed that HMS’ success in creating the Anybus, and developing a successful business around the innovation, was based on three main capabilities – cultivating customer relations on different managerial and organizational levels, inspiring business relations, and balancing complementary human assets for the purpose of business creation. The success of HMS has turned the management’s attention away from past activities of key actors, of their behavior, and how they influenced and stimulated the creation of radical innovations. Nowadays, they are rhetorically focusing on creativity and innovation. All the while, their real actions put emphasis on growth, cost reduction, product quality, delivery precision, operational efficiency, and moneymaking. In the process of becoming an international company, HMS gradually refocused. In so doing they became profitable and successful, but they also forgot what made them innovative in the first place. Fortunately, HMS’ management has come to realize that this is the case and they are now in search of recapturing innovation once again. Our analysis indicates that HMS’ management is facing several barriers to innovation related path dependency and other lock-in phenomena. HMS’ management has been captured, trapped in their mindset and actions, by the success of the past. But now their future has to be secured, and they have come to realize that moneymaking is not everything. In recent years, HMS’ management have begun to search for innovation once more, in order to recapture their past capabilities for creating radical innovations. In order to unlock their managerial perceptions of customer needs and their counter-innovation driven activities and events, to utilize the full potential of their employees and capture the innovation opportunity for the future.
Application of Flexi-Wall in Noise Barriers Renewal
This paper presents an experimental study on structural performance of an innovative noise barrier consisting of poly-block, light polyurethane foam (LPF) and polyurea. This wall system (flexi-wall) is intended to be employed as a vertical extension to existing sound barriers in an accelerated construction method. To aid in the wall design, several mechanical tests were conducted on LPF specimens and two full-scale walls were then fabricated employing the same LPF material. The full-scale walls were subjected to lateral loading in order to establish their lateral resistance. A cyclic fatigue test was also performed on a full-scale flexi-wall in order to evaluate the performance of the wall under a repetitive loading condition. The result of the experiments indicated the suitability of flexi-wall in accelerated construction and confirmed that the structural performance of the wall system under lateral loading is satisfactory for the sound barrier application. The experimental results were discussed and a preliminary design procedure for application of flexi-wall in sound barrier applications was also developed.
Recycling Motivations and Barriers in Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia

Public participation in recycling domestic waste is still very low in Malaysia. Only 10.5% of solid waste was recycled up to now which is far below than of in developed countries. Therefore, understanding public motivations towards recycling domestic waste are important to improve current recycling rate. Thus, this study attempts to identify what are the possible motivations and hindrances for the public to recycle. Open-ended questions format were administered to 484 people in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia. Two specific questions we asked to explore their general determinants and barriers in practicing recycling: “What motivates you to recycle?” and “What are the barriers you encountered in doing recycling activities?” Thematic was conducted on the open-ended questions in which themes were created with the raw comments. It was found that the underlying recycling motivations are (i) awareness’ towards the environment; (ii) benefits to the society and individual; and (iii) social influence. Non participations are influence by (i) attitudes; (ii) commitment; (iii) facilities; (iv) knowledge; (v) inconvenience; and (vi) enforcement.

Predicting the Adsorptive Capacities of Biosolid as a Barrier in Soil to Remove Industrial Contaminants
The major environmental risk of soil pollution is the contamination of groundwater by infiltration of organic and inorganic pollutants which can cause a serious menace. To prevent this risk and to protect the groundwater, we proceeded in this study to test the reliability of a biosolid as barrier to prevent the migration of very dangerous pollutants as ‘Cadmium’ through the different soil layers. In this study, we tried to highlight the effect of several parameters such as: turbidity (different cycle of Hydration/Dehydration), rainfall, effect of initial Cd(II) concentration and the type of soil. These parameters allow us to find the most effective manner to integrate this barrier in the soil. From the results obtained, we found a significant effect of the barrier. Indeed, the recorded passing quantities are lowest for the highest rainfall; we noted also that the barrier has a better affinity towards higher concentrations; the most retained amounts of cadmium has been in the top layer of the two types of soil tested, while the lowest amounts of cadmium are recorded in the bottom layers of soils.
Investigation of Long-Term Thermal Insulation Performance of Vacuum Insulation Panels with Various Enveloping Methods

To practically apply vacuum insulation panels (VIPs) to buildings or home appliances, VIPs have demanded long-term lifespan with outstanding insulation performance. Service lives of VIPs enveloped with Al-foil and three-layer Al-metallized envelope are calculated. For Al-foil envelope, the service life is longer but edge conduction is too large compared with the Al-metallized envelope. To increase service life even more, the proposed double enveloping method and metal-barrier-added enveloping method are further analyzed. The service lives of the VIP to employ two enveloping methods are calculated. Also, pressure increase and thermal insulation performance characteristics are investigated. For the metalbarrier- added enveloping method, effective thermal conductivity increase with time is close to that of Al-foil envelope, especially, for getter-inserted VIPs. For double enveloping method, if water vapor is perfectly adsorbed, the effect of service life enhancement becomes much greater. From these methods, the VIP can be guaranteed for service life of more than 20 years.

Various Modifications of Electrochemical Barrier Layer Thinning of Anodic Aluminum Oxide

In this paper, two options of anodic alumina barrier layer thinning have been demonstrated. The approaches varied with the duration of the voltage step. It was found that too long step of the barrier layer thinning process leads to chemical etching of the nanopores on their top. At the bottoms pores are not fully opened what is disadvantageous for further applications in nanofabrication. On the other hand, while the duration of the voltage step is controlled by the current density (value of the current density cannot exceed 75% of the value recorded during previous voltage step) the pores are fully opened. However, pores at the bottom obtained with this procedure have smaller diameter, nevertheless this procedure provides electric contact between the bare aluminum (substrate) and electrolyte, what is suitable for template assisted electrodeposition, one of the most cost-efficient synthesis method in nanotechnology.

A Research on Glass Ceiling Syndrome Career Barriers of Women Academics

Although women have merit in their jobs, they still are located very few in the top management in many sectors. There are many causes of such situation. Such a situation creates obstacles; especially invisible ones are called “glass ceiling syndrome”. Also, studies which handle this subject in academic community are very few. The aim of this research is to reach the results about glass ceiling obstacles in terms of female teaching staff (academics) working in higher education institutions. To this end, our study was performed on female academics working at Selcuk University, Konya / Turkey. Our study's main aim can be expressed as to determine whether there are glass ceiling obstacles for female academics working at the higher education institution in question, to measure their glass ceiling perceptions and, thus, to identify what the glass ceiling barrier components for them to promotion to senior management positions are.

TBC for Protection of Al Alloy Aerospace Component

The use of a conventional air plasma-sprayed thermal barrier coating (TBC) and a porous, functionally graded TBC as a thermal insulator for Al7075 alloy was explored. A quench test at 1200°C employing fast heating and cooling rates was setup to represent a dynamic thermal condition of an aerospace component. During the test, coated samples were subjected the ambient temperature of 1200°C for a very short time. This was followed by a rapid drop in temperature resulting in cracking of the coatings. For the conventional TBC, it was found that the temperature of the Al7075 substrate decreases with the increase in the ZrO2 topcoat thickness. However, at the topcoat thickness of 1100 µm, large horizontal cracks can be observed in the topcoat and at the topcoat thickness of 1600 µm, the topcoat delaminate during cooling after the quench test. The porous, functionally graded TBC with 600 µm thick topcoat, on the other hand, was found to be as effective at reducing the substrate temperature as the conventional TBC with 1100 µm thick topcoat. The maximum substrate temperature is about 213°C for the former and 208°C for the latter when a heating rate of 38°C/s was used. When the quench tests were conducted with a faster heating rate of 128°C/s, the Al7075 substrate heat up faster with a reduction in the maximum substrate temperatures. The substrate temperatures dropped from 297 to 212°C for the conventional TBC and from 213 to 155°C for the porous TBC, both with 600 µm thick topcoat. Segmentation cracks were observed in both coating after the quench test.

Extend of Self-Life of Potato Round Slices with Edible Coating, Green Tea and Ascorbic Acid

The effects of coatings based on sodium alginate (S.A) and carboxyl methyl cellulose (CMC) on the color and moisture characteristics of potato round slices were investigated. It is the first time that this combination of polysaccharides is used as edible coating which alone had the best performance as inhibitor of potato color discoloration during the storage of 15 days at 4oC. When ascorbic acid (AA) and green tea (GT) were added in the above edible coating its effects on potato round slices changed. The mixtures of sodium alginate and carboxyl methyl cellulose with ascorbic acid or with green tea behave as a potential moisture barrier, resulting to the extent of potato samples self–life. These data suggests that both GT and AA are potential inhibitors of dehydration in potatoes and not only natural antioxidants.

Characterization of the LMOS with Different Channel Structure
In this paper, we propose a novel metal oxide semiconductor field effect transistor with L-shaped channel structure (LMOS), and several type of L-shaped structures are also designed, studied and compared with the conventional MOSFET device for the same average gate length (Lavg). The proposed device electrical characteristics are analyzed and evaluated by three dimension (3-D) ISE-TCAD simulator. It can be confirmed that the LMOS devices have higher on-state drain current and both lower drain-induced barrier lowering (DIBL) and subthreshold swing (S.S.) than its conventional counterpart has. In addition, the transconductance and voltage gain properties of the LMOS are also improved.
Improving E-Government Services for Non- English Speaking Background (NESB) Communities in Australia
Australian government agencies have a natural desire to provide migrants a wide range of opportunities. Consequently, government online services should be equally available to migrants with a non-English speaking background (NESB). Despite the commendable efforts of governments and local agencies in Australia to provide such services, in reality, many NESB communities are not taking advantage of these services. This article–based on an extensive case study regarding the use of online government services by the Arabic NESB community in Australia–reports on the possible reasons for this issue, as well as suggestions for improvement. The conclusion is that Australia should implement ICT-based or e-government policies, programmes, and services that more accurately reflect migrant cultures and languages so that migrant integration can be more fully accomplished. Specifically, this article presents an NESB Model that adopts the value of usercentricity or a more individual-focused approach to government online services in Australia.
Characterization of Electrohydrodynamic Force on Dielectric-Barrier-Discharge Plasma Actuator Using Fluid Simulation
Wall-surface jet induced by the dielectric barrier discharge (DBD) has been proposed as an actuator for active flow control in aerodynamic applications. Discharge plasma evolution of the DBD plasma actuator was simulated based on a simple fluid model, in which the electron, one type of positive ion and negative ion were taken into account. Two-dimensional simulation was conducted, and the results are in agreement with the insights obtained from experimental studies. The simulation results indicate that the discharge mode changes depending on applied voltage slope; when the applied voltage is positive-going with high applied voltage slope, the corona-type discharge mode turns into the streamer-type discharge mode and the threshold voltage slope is around 300 kV/ms in this simulation. The characteristics of the electrohydrodynamic (EHD) force, which is the source of the wall-surface jet, also change depending on the discharge mode; the tentative peak value of the EHD force during the positive-going voltage phase is saturated by the periodical formation of the streamer-type discharge.
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