Open Science Research Excellence

Open Science Index

Commenced in January 2007 Frequency: Monthly Edition: International Paper Count: 173

Improvement of Soft Clay Using Floating Cement Dust-Lime Columns

The two main criteria that control the design and performance of footings are bearing capacity and settlement of soil. In soft soils, the construction of buildings, storage tanks, warehouse, etc. on weak soils usually involves excessive settlement problems. To solve bearing capacity or reduce settlement problems, soil improvement may be considered by using different techniques, including encased cement dust–lime columns. The proposed research studies the effect of adding floating encased cement dust and lime mix columns to soft clay on the clay-bearing capacity. Four experimental tests were carried out. Columns diameters of 3.0 cm, 4.0 cm, and 5.0 cm and columns length of 60% of the clay layer thickness were used. Numerical model was constructed and verified using commercial finite element package (PLAXIS 2D, V8.5). The verified model was used to study the effect of distributing columns around the footing at different distances. The study showed that the floating cement dust lime columns enhanced the clay-bearing capacity with 262%. The numerical model showed that the columns around the footing have a limit effect on the clay improvement.

Investigation of Improved Chaotic Signal Tracking by Echo State Neural Networks and Multilayer Perceptron via Training of Extended Kalman Filter Approach
This paper presents a prediction performance of feedforward Multilayer Perceptron (MLP) and Echo State Networks (ESN) trained with extended Kalman filter. Feedforward neural networks and ESN are powerful neural networks which can track and predict nonlinear signals. However, their tracking performance depends on the specific signals or data sets, having the risk of instability accompanied by large error. In this study we explore this process by applying different network size and leaking rate for prediction of nonlinear or chaotic signals in MLP neural networks. Major problems of ESN training such as the problem of initialization of the network and improvement in the prediction performance are tackled. The influence of coefficient of activation function in the hidden layer and other key parameters are investigated by simulation results. Extended Kalman filter is employed in order to improve the sequential and regulation learning rate of the feedforward neural networks. This training approach has vital features in the training of the network when signals have chaotic or non-stationary sequential pattern. Minimization of the variance in each step of the computation and hence smoothing of tracking were obtained by examining the results, indicating satisfactory tracking characteristics for certain conditions. In addition, simulation results confirmed satisfactory performance of both of the two neural networks with modified parameterization in tracking of the nonlinear signals.
Investigation of Effective Parameters on Pullout Capacity in Soil Nailing with Special Attention to International Design Codes

An important and influential factor in design and determining the safety factor in Soil Nailing is the ultimate pullout capacity, or, in other words, bond strength. This important parameter depends on several factors such as material and soil texture, method of implementation, excavation diameter, friction angle between the nail and the soil, grouting pressure, the nail depth (overburden pressure), the angle of drilling and the degree of saturation in soil. Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), a customary regulation in the design of nailing, is considered only the effect of the soil type (or rock) and the method of implementation in determining the bond strength, which results in non-economic design. The other regulations are each of a kind, some of the parameters affecting bond resistance are not taken into account. Therefore, in the present paper, at first the relationships and tables presented by several valid regulations are presented for estimating the ultimate pullout capacity, and then the effect of several important factors affecting on ultimate Pullout capacity are studied. Finally, it was determined, the effect of overburden pressure (in method of injection with pressure), soil dilatation and roughness of the drilling surface on pullout strength is incremental, and effect of degree of soil saturation on pullout strength to a certain degree of saturation is increasing and then decreasing. therefore it is better to get help from nail pullout-strength test results and numerical modeling to evaluate the effect of parameters such as overburden pressure, dilatation, and degree of soil saturation, and so on to reach an optimal and economical design.

Numerical Evaluation of Lateral Bearing Capacity of Piles in Cement-Treated Soils

Soft soil is used in many of civil engineering projects like coastal, marine and road projects. Because of low shear strength and stiffness of soft soils, large settlement and low bearing capacity will occur under superstructure loads. This will make the civil engineering activities more difficult and costlier. In the case of soft soils, improvement is a suitable method to increase the shear strength and stiffness for engineering purposes. In recent years, the artificial cementation of soil by cement and lime has been extensively used for soft soil improvement. Cement stabilization is a well-established technique for improving soft soils. Artificial cementation increases the shear strength and hardness of the natural soils. On the other hand, in soft soils, the use of piles to transfer loads to the depths of ground is usual. By using cement treated soil around the piles, high bearing capacity and low settlement in piles can be achieved. In the present study, lateral bearing capacity of short piles in cemented soils is investigated by numerical approach. For this purpose, three dimensional (3D) finite difference software, FLAC 3D is used. Cement treated soil has a strain hardening-softening behavior, because of breaking of bonds between cement agent and soil particle. To simulate such behavior, strain hardening-softening soil constitutive model is used for cement treated soft soil. Additionally, conventional elastic-plastic Mohr Coulomb constitutive model and linear elastic model are used for stress-strain behavior of natural soils and pile. To determine the parameters of constitutive models and also for verification of numerical model, the results of available triaxial laboratory tests on and insitu loading of piles in cement treated soft soil are used. Different parameters are considered in parametric study to determine the effective parameters on the bearing of the piles on cemented treated soils. In the present paper, the effect of various length and height of the artificial cemented area, different diameter and length of the pile and the properties of the materials are studied. Also, the effect of choosing a constitutive model for cemented treated soils in the bearing capacity of the pile is investigated.

Effect of Footing Shape on Bearing Capacity and Settlement of Closely Spaced Footings on Sandy Soil

The bearing capacity of closely spaced shallow footings alters with their spacing and the shape of footing. In this study, the bearing capacity and settlement of two adjacent footings constructed on a sand layer are investigated. The effect of different footing shapes including square, circular, ring and strip on sandy soil is captured in the calculations. The investigations are carried out numerically using PLAXIS-3D software and analytically employing conventional settlement equations. For this purpose, foundations are modelled in the program with practical dimensions and various spacing ratios ranging from 1 to 5. The spacing ratio is defined as the centre-to-centre distance to the width of foundations (S/B). Overall, 24 models are analyzed; and the results are compared and discussed in detail. It can be concluded that the presence of adjacent foundation leads to the reduction in bearing capacity for round shape footings while it can increase the bearing capacity of rectangular footings in some specific distances.

Investigation on Behavior of Fixed-Ended Reinforced Concrete Deep Beams

Reinforced Concrete (RC) deep beams are special structural elements because of their geometry and behavior under loads. For example, assumption of strain- stress distribution is not linear in the cross section. These types of beams may have simple supports or fixed supports. A lot of research works have been conducted on simply supported deep beams, but little study has been done in the fixed-end RC deep beams behavior. Recently, using of fixed-ended deep beams has been widely increased in structures. In this study, the behavior of fixed-ended deep beams is investigated, and the important parameters in capacity of this type of beams are mentioned.

Effect of Confinement on the Bearing Capacity and Settlement of Spread Foundations

Allowable-bearing capacity is the competency of soil to safely carries the pressure from the superstructure without experiencing a shear failure with accompanying excessive settlements. Ensuring a safe bearing pressure with respect to failure does not tolerate settlement of the foundation will be within acceptable limits. Therefore, settlement analysis should always be performed since most structures are settlement sensitive. When visualising the movement of a soil wedge in the bearing capacity criterion, both vertically and horizontally, it becomes clear that by confining the soil surrounding the foundation, both the bearing capacity and settlement values improve. In this study, two sizes of spread foundation were considered; (2×4) m and (3×5) m. These represent two real problem case studies of an existing building. The foundations were analysed in terms of dimension as well as position with respect to a confining wall (i.e., sheet piles on both sides). Assuming B is the least foundation dimension, the study comprised the analyses of three distances; (0.1 B), (0.5 B), and (0.75 B) between the sheet piles and foundations alongside three depths of confinement (0.5 B), (1 B), and (1.5 B). Nonlinear three-dimensional finite element analysis (ANSYS) was adopted to perform an analytical investigation on the behaviour of the two foundations contained by the case study. Results showed that confinement of foundations reduced the overall stresses near the foundation by 65% and reduced the vertical displacement by 90%. Moreover, the most effective distance between the confinement wall and the foundation was found to be 0.5 B.

Optimizing the Capacity of a Convolutional Neural Network for Image Segmentation and Pattern Recognition
In this paper, we study the factors which determine the capacity of a Convolutional Neural Network (CNN) model and propose the ways to evaluate and adjust the capacity of a CNN model for best matching to a specific pattern recognition task. Firstly, a scheme is proposed to adjust the number of independent functional units within a CNN model to make it be better fitted to a task. Secondly, the number of independent functional units in the capsule network is adjusted to fit it to the training dataset. Thirdly, a method based on Bayesian GAN is proposed to enrich the variances in the current dataset to increase its complexity. Experimental results on the PASCAL VOC 2010 Person Part dataset and the MNIST dataset show that, in both conventional CNN models and capsule networks, the number of independent functional units is an important factor that determines the capacity of a network model. By adjusting the number of functional units, the capacity of a model can better match the complexity of a dataset.
A Preliminary Conceptual Scale to Discretize the Distributed Manufacturing Continuum

The distributed manufacturing methodology brings a new concept of decentralized manufacturing operations close to the proximity of end users. A preliminary scale, to measure distributed capacity and evaluate positioning of firms, is developed in this research. In the first part of the paper, a literature review has been performed which highlights the explorative nature of the studies conducted to present definitions and classifications due to novelty of this topic. From literature, five dimensions of distributed manufacturing development stages have been identified: localization, manufacturing technologies, customization and personalization, digitalization and democratization of design. Based on these determinants a conceptual scale is proposed to measure the status of distributed manufacturing of a generic firm. A multiple case study is then conducted in two steps to test the conceptual scale and to identify the corresponding level of distributed potential in each case study firm.

Effects of an Inclusive Educational Model for Students with High Intellectual Capacity and Special Educational Needs: A Case Study in Talentos UdeC, Chile

In Chile, since 2002, there are extracurricular enrichment programs complementary to regular education for students with high intellectual capacity. This paper describes a model for the educational inclusion of students, with special educational needs associated with high intellectual capacity, developed at the University of Concepción and its effects on its students, academics and undergraduate students that collaborate with the program. The Talentos UdeC Program was created in 2003 and is intended for 240 children and youth from 11 to 18 years old, from 15 communes of the Biobio region. The case Talentos UdeC is analyzed from a mixed qualitative study in which those participating in the educational model are considered. The sample was composed of 30 students, 30 academics, and 30 undergraduate students. In the case of students, pre and post program measurements were made to analyze their socio-emotional adaptation, academic motivation and socially responsible behavior. The mentioned variables are measured through questionnaires designed and validated by the University of Concepcion that included: The Socially Responsible Behavior Questionnaire (CCSR); the Academic Motivation Questionnaire (CMA) and the Socio-Emotional Adaptation Questionnaire (CASE). The information obtained by these questionnaires was analyzed through a quantitative analysis. Academics and undergraduate students were interviewed to learn their perception of the effects of the program on themselves, on students and on society. The information obtained is analyzed using qualitative analysis based on the identification of common themes and descriptors for the construction of conceptual categories of answers. Quantitative results show differences in the first three variables analyzed in the students, after their participation for two years in Talentos UdeC. Qualitative results demonstrate perception of effects in the vision of world, project of life and in other areas of the students’ development; perception of effects in a personal, professional and organizational plane by academics and a perception of effects in their personal-social development and training in generic competencies by undergraduates students.

Carcass Characteristics and Qualities of Philippine White Mallard (Anas boschas L.) and Pekin (Anas platyrhynchos L.) Duck
The Philippine White Mallard duck was compared with Pekin duck for potential meat production. A total of 50 ducklings were randomly assigned to five (5) pens per treatment after one month of brooding. Each pen containing five (5) ducks was considered as a replicate. The ducks were raised until 12 weeks of age and slaughtered at the end of the growing period. Meat from both breeds was analyzed. The data were subjected to the Independent-Sample T-test at 5% level of confidence. Results showed that post-mortem pH (0, 20 minutes, 50 minutes, 1 hour and 20 minutes, 1 hour and 50 minutes, and 24 hours ) did not differ significantly (P>0.05) between breeds. However, Pekin ducks (89.84±0.71) had a significantly higher water-holding capacity than Philippine White Mallard ducks (87.93±0.63) (P<0.05). Also, meat color (CIE L, a, b) revealed that no significant differences among the lightness, redness, and yellowness of the skin (breast) in both breeds (P>0.05) except for the yellowness of the lean muscles of the Pekin duck breast. Pekin duck meat (1.15±0.04) had significantly higher crude fat content than Philippine White Mallard (0.47±0.58). The study clearly showed that breed is a factor and provided some pronounced effects among the parameters. However, these results are considered as preliminary information on the meat quality of Philippine White Mallard duck. Hence, further studies are needed to understand and fully utilize it for meat production and develop different meat products from this breed.
Quality Evaluation of Grape Seed Oils of the Ionian Islands Based on GC-MS and Other Spectroscopic Techniques

Grape seeds are waste products of wineries and often referred to as an important agricultural and industrial waste product with the potential to be used in pharmaceutical, food, and cosmetic applications. In this study, grape seed oil from traditional Ionian varieties was examined for the determination of the quality and the characteristics of each variety. Initially, the fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) profiles were analyzed using Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry, after transesterification. Furthermore, other quality parameters of the grape seed oils were determined by Spectroscopy techniques, UV-Vis and Raman included. Moreover, the antioxidant capacity of the oil was measured by 2,2'-azino-bis-3-ethylbenzothiazoline-6-sulfonic acid (ABTS) and 2,2-Diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) assays and their antioxidant capacity expressed in Trolox equivalents. K and ΔΚ indices were measured in 232, 268, 270 nm, as an oil quality index. The results indicate that the air-dried grape seed total oil content ranged from 5.26 to 8.77% w/w, which is in accordance with the other grape seed varieties tested in similar studies. The composition of grape seed oil is predominated with linoleic and oleic fatty acids, with the linoleic fatty acid ranging from 53.68 to 69.95% and both the linoleic and oleic fatty acids totaling 78-82% of FAMEs, which is analogous to the fatty acid composition of safflower oil. The antioxidant assays ABTS and DPPH scored high, exhibiting that the oils have potential in the cosmetic and culinary businesses. Above that, our results demonstrate that Ionian grape seed oils have prospects that can go further than cosmetic or culinary use, into the pharmaceuticals industry. Finally, the reclamation of grape seeds from wineries waste stream is in accordance with the bio-economy strategic framework and contributes to environmental protection.

The Influence of the Geogrid Layers on the Bearing Capacity of Layered Soils

Many classical bearing capacity theories assume that the natural soil's layers are homogenous for determining the bearing capacity of the soil. But, in many practical projects, we encounter multi-layer soils. Geosynthetic as reinforcement materials have been extensively used in the construction of various structures. In this paper, numerical analysis of the Plate Load Test (PLT) using of ABAQUS software in double-layered soils with different thicknesses of sandy and gravelly layers reinforced with geogrid was considered. The PLT is one of the common filed methods to calculate parameters such as soil bearing capacity, the evaluation of the compressibility and the determination of the Subgrade Reaction module. In fact, the influence of the geogrid layers on the bearing capacity of the layered soils is investigated. Finally, the most appropriate mode for the distance and number of reinforcement layers is determined. Results show that using three layers of geogrid with a distance of 0.3 times the width of the loading plate has the highest efficiency in bearing capacity of double-layer (sand and gravel) soils. Also, the significant increase in bearing capacity between unreinforced and reinforced soil with three layers of geogrid is caused by the condition that the upper layer (gravel) thickness is equal to the loading plate width.

Numerical Investigation on Load Bearing Capacity of Pervious Concrete Piles as an Alternative to Granular Columns

Pervious concrete combines considerable permeability with adequate strength, which makes it very beneficial in pavement construction and also in ground improvement projects. In this paper, a single pervious concrete pile subjected to vertical and lateral loading is analysed using a verified three dimensional finite element code. A parametric study was carried out in order to investigate load bearing capacity of a single unreinforced pervious concrete pile in saturated soft soil and also gain insight into the failure mechanism of this rather new soil improvement technique. The results show that concrete damaged plasticity constitutive model can perfectly simulate the highly brittle nature of the pervious concrete material and considering the computed vertical and horizontal load bearing capacities, some suggestions have been made for ground improvement projects.

Determination of Physicochemical Properties, Bioaccessibility of Phenolics and Antioxidant Capacity of Mineral Enriched Linden Herbal Tea Beverage

In this research, dried linden (Tilia argentea) leaves and blossoms were used as a raw material for mineral enriched herbal tea beverage production. For this aim, %1 dried linden was infused with boiling water (100 °C) for 5 minutes. After cooling, sucrose, citric acid, ascorbic acid, natural lemon flavor and natural mineral water were added. Beverage samples were plate filtered, filled into 200-mL glass bottles, capped then pasteurized at 98 °C for 15 minutes. Water soluble dry matter, titratable acidity, ascorbic acid, pH, minerals (Fe, Ca, Mg, K, Na), color (L*, a*, b*), turbidity, bioaccessible phenolics and antioxidant capacity were analyzed. Water soluble dry matter, titratable acidity, and ascorbic were determined as 7.66±0.28 g/100 g, 0.13±0.00 g/100 mL, and 19.42±0.62 mg/100 mL, respectively. pH was measured as 3.69. Fe, Ca, Mg, K and Na contents of the beverage were determined as 0.12±0.00, 115.48±0.05, 34.72±0.14, 48.67±0.43 and 85.72±1.01 mg/L, respectively. Color was measured as 13.63±0.05, -4.33±0.05, and 3.06±0.05 for L*, a*, and b* values. Turbidity was determined as 0.69±0.07 NTU. Bioaccessible phenolics were determined as 312.82±5.91 mg GAE/100 mL. Antioxidant capacities of chemical (MetOH:H2O:HCl) and physiological extracts (in vitro digestive enzymatic extraction) with DPPH (27.59±0.53 and 0.17±0.02 μmol trolox/mL), FRAP (21.01±0.97 and 13.27±0.19 μmol trolox/mL) and CUPRAC (44.71±9.42 and 2.80±0.64 μmol trolox/mL) methods were also evaluated. As a result, enrichment with natural mineral water was proposed for the development of functional and nutritional values together with a good potential for commercialization.

Safety Conditions Analysis of Scaffolding on Construction Sites

This paper presents the results of analysis of 100 full-scale scaffolding structures in terms of compliance with legal acts and safety of use. In 2016 and 2017, authors examined scaffolds in Poland located at buildings which were at construction or renovation stage. The basic elements affecting the safety of scaffolding use such as anchors, supports, platforms, guardrails and toe-boards have been taken into account. All of these elements were checked in each of considered scaffolding. Based on the analyzed scaffoldings, the most common errors concerning assembly process and use of scaffolding were collected. Legal acts on the scaffoldings are not always clear, and this causes many issues. In practice, people realize how dangerous the use of incomplete scaffolds is only when the accident occurs. Despite the fact that the scaffolding should ensure the safety of its users, most accidents on construction sites are caused by fall from a height.

3D Numerical Analysis of Stone Columns Reinforced with Horizontal and Vertical Geosynthetic Materials

Improvement and reinforcement of soils with poor strength and engineering properties for constructing low height structures or structures such as liquid storage tanks, bridge columns, and heavy structures have necessitated applying particular techniques. Stone columns are among the well-known methods applied in such soils. This method provides an economically justified way for improving engineering properties of soft clay and loose sandy soils. Stone column implementation in these soils increases their bearing capacity and reduces the settlement of foundation build on them. In the present study, the finite difference based FLAC3D software was used to investigate the performance and effect of soil reinforcement through stone columns without lining and those with geosynthetic lining with different levels of stiffness in horizontal and vertical modes in clayey soils. The results showed that soil improvement using stone columns with lining in vertical and horizontal modes results in improvement of bearing capacity and foundation settlement.

Permeable Asphalt Pavement as a Measure of Urban Green Infrastructure in the Extreme Events Mitigation

Population growth in cities has led to an increase in the infrastructures construction, including buildings and roadways. This aspect leads directly to the soils waterproofing. In turn, changes in precipitation patterns are developing into higher and more frequent intensities. Thus, these two conjugated aspects decrease the rainwater infiltration into soils and increase the volume of surface runoff. The practice of green and sustainable urban solutions has encouraged research in these areas. The porous asphalt pavement, as a green infrastructure, is part of practical solutions set to address urban challenges related to land use and adaptation to climate change. In this field, permeable pavements with porous asphalt mixtures (PA) have several advantages in terms of reducing the runoff generated by the floods. The porous structure of these pavements, compared to a conventional asphalt pavement, allows the rainwater infiltration in the subsoil, and consequently, the water quality improvement. This green infrastructure solution can be applied in cities, particularly in streets or parking lots to mitigate the floods effects. Over the years, the pores of these pavements can be filled by sediment, reducing their function in the rainwater infiltration. Thus, double layer porous asphalt (DLPA) was developed to mitigate the clogging effect and facilitate the water infiltration into the lower layers. This study intends to deepen the knowledge of the performance of DLPA when subjected to clogging. The experimental methodology consisted on four evaluation phases of the DLPA infiltration capacity submitted to three precipitation events (100, 200 and 300 mm/h) in each phase. The evaluation first phase determined the behavior after DLPA construction. In phases two and three, two 500 g/m2 clogging cycles were performed, totaling a 1000 g/m2 final simulation. Sand with gradation accented in fine particles was used as clogging material. In the last phase, the DLPA was subjected to simple sweeping and vacuuming maintenance. A precipitation simulator, type sprinkler, capable of simulating the real precipitation was developed for this purpose. The main conclusions show that the DLPA has the capacity to drain the water, even after two clogging cycles. The infiltration results of flows lead to an efficient performance of the DPLA in the surface runoff attenuation, since this was not observed in any of the evaluation phases, even at intensities of 200 and 300 mm/h, simulating intense precipitation events. The infiltration capacity under clogging conditions decreased about 7% on average in the three intensities relative to the initial performance that is after construction. However, this was restored when subjected to simple maintenance, recovering the DLPA hydraulic functionality. In summary, the study proved the efficacy of using a DLPA when it retains thicker surface sediments and limits the fine sediments entry to the remaining layers. At the same time, it is guaranteed the rainwater infiltration and the surface runoff reduction and is therefore a viable solution to put into practice in permeable pavements.

Reliability Based Performance Evaluation of Stone Column Improved Soft Ground

The present study considers the effect of variation of different geotechnical random variables in the design of stone column-foundation systems for assessing the bearing capacity and consolidation settlement of highly compressible soil. The soil and stone column properties, spacing, diameter and arrangement of stone columns are considered as the random variables. Probability of failure (Pf) is computed for a target degree of consolidation and a target safe load by Monte Carlo Simulation (MCS). The study shows that the variation in coefficient of radial consolidation (cr) and cohesion of soil (cs) are two most important factors influencing Pf. If the coefficient of variation (COV) of cr exceeds 20%, Pf exceeds 0.001, which is unsafe following the guidelines of US Army Corps of Engineers. The bearing capacity also exceeds its safe value for COV of cs > 30%. It is also observed that as the spacing between the stone column increases, the probability of reaching a target degree of consolidation decreases. Accordingly, design guidelines, considering both consolidation and bearing capacity of improved ground, are proposed for different spacing and diameter of stone columns and geotechnical random variables.

Interference Management in Long Term Evolution-Advanced System

Incorporating Home eNodeB (HeNB) in cellular networks, e.g. Long Term Evolution Advanced (LTE-A), is beneficial for extending coverage and enhancing capacity at low price especially within the non-line-of sight (NLOS) environments such as homes. HeNB or femtocell is a small low powered base station which provides radio coverage to the mobile users in an indoor environment. This deployment results in a heterogeneous network where the available spectrum becomes shared between two layers. Therefore, a problem of Inter Cell Interference (ICI) appears. This issue is the main challenge in LTE-A. To deal with this challenge, various techniques based on frequency, time and power control are proposed. This paper deals with the impact of carrier aggregation and higher order MIMO (Multiple Input Multiple Output) schemes on the LTE-Advanced performance. Simulation results show the advantages of these schemes on the system capacity (4.109 b/s/Hz when bandwidth B=100 MHz and when applying MIMO 8x8 for SINR=30 dB), maximum theoretical peak data rate (more than 4 Gbps for B=100 MHz and when MIMO 8x8 is used) and spectral efficiency (15 b/s/Hz and 30b/s/Hz when MIMO 4x4 and MIMO 8x8 are applying respectively for SINR=30 dB).

Analytical Model to Predict the Shear Capacity of Reinforced Concrete Beams Externally Strengthened with CFRP Composites Conditions

This paper presents a proposed analytical model for predicting the shear strength of reinforced concrete beams strengthened with CFRP composites as external reinforcement. The proposed analytical model can predict the shear contribution of CFRP composites of RC beams with an acceptable coefficient of correlation with the tested results. Based on the comparison of the proposed model with the published well-known models (ACI model, Triantafillou model, and Colotti model), the ACI model had a wider range of 0.16 to 10.08 for the ratio between tested and predicted ultimate shears at failure. Also, an acceptable range of 0.27 to 2.78 for the ratio between tested and predicted ultimate shears by the Triantafillou model. Finally, the best prediction (the ratio between the tested and predicted ones) of the ultimate shear capacity is observed by using Colotti model with a range of 0.20 to 1.78. Thus, the contribution of the CFRP composites as external reinforcement can be predicted with high accuracy by using the proposed analytical model.

The Behavior of Dam Foundation Reinforced by Stone Columns: Case Study of Kissir Dam-Jijel

This work presents a 2D numerical simulation of an earth dam to assess the behavior of its foundation after a treatment by stone columns. This treatment aims to improve the bearing capacity, to increase the mechanical properties of the soil, to accelerate the consolidation, to reduce the settlements and to eliminate the liquefaction phenomenon in case of seismic excitation. For the evaluation of the pore pressures, the position of the phreatic line and the flow network was defined, and a seepage analysis was performed with the software MIDAS Soil Works. The consolidation calculation is performed through a simulation of the actual construction stages of the dam. These analyzes were performed using the Mohr-Coulomb soil model and the results are compared with the actual measurements of settlement gauges implanted in the dam. An analysis of the bearing capacity was conducted to show the role of stone columns in improving the bearing capacity of the foundation.

Quantifying Freeway Capacity Reductions by Rainfall Intensities Based on Stochastic Nature of Flow Breakdown

This study quantifies a decrement in freeway capacity during rainfall. Traffic and rainfall data were gathered from Highway Agencies and Wunderground weather service. Three inter-urban freeway sections and its nearest weather stations were selected as experimental sites. Capacity analysis found reductions of maximum and mean pre-breakdown flow rates due to rainfall. The Kruskal-Wallis test also provided some evidence to suggest that the variance in the pre-breakdown flow rate is statistically insignificant. Potential application of this study lies in the operation of real time traffic management schemes such as Variable Speed Limits (VSL), Hard Shoulder Running (HSR), and Ramp Metering System (RMS), where speed or flow limits could be set based on a number of factors, including rainfall events and their intensities.

Performance of Axially Loaded Single Pile Embedded in Cohesive Soil with Cavities

The stability of a single model pile located adjacent to a continuous cavity was studied. This paper is an attempt to understand the behaviour of axially loaded single pile embedded in clayey soil with the presences of cavities. The performance of piles located in such soils was studied analytically. A verification analysis was carried out on available studies to assess the ability of analytical model to correctly interpret the system behaviour. The study was adopted by finite element program (PLAXIS). The study included many cases; in each case, there is a critical value in which the presence of cavities has shown minimum effect on the pile performance. Figures including the load carrying capacity of pile with the affecting factors are presented. These figures provide beneficial information for pile design constructed close to underground cavities. It was concluded that the load carrying capacity of the pile is reduced by the presence of the cavity within the soil mass. This reduction varies according to the size and location of cavity.

Water Resources Vulnerability Assessment to Climate Change in a Semi-Arid Basin of South India

This paper examines vulnerability assessment of water resources in a semi-arid basin using the 4-step approach. The vulnerability assessment framework is developed to study the water resources vulnerability which includes the creation of GIS-based vulnerability maps. These maps represent the spatial variability of the vulnerability index. This paper introduces the 4-step approach to assess vulnerability that incorporates a new set of indicators. The approach is demonstrated using a framework composed of a precipitation data for (1975–2010) period, temperature data for (1965–2010) period, hydrological model outputs and the water resources GIS data base. The vulnerability assessment is a function of three components such as exposure, sensitivity and adaptive capacity. The current water resources vulnerability is assessed using GIS based spatio-temporal information. Rainfall Coefficient of Variation, monsoon onset and end date, rainy days, seasonality indices, temperature are selected for the criterion ‘exposure’. Water yield, ground water recharge, evapotranspiration (ET) are selected for the criterion ‘sensitivity’. Type of irrigation and storage structures are selected for the criterion ‘Adaptive capacity’. These indicators were mapped and integrated in GIS environment using overlay analysis. The five sub-basins, namely Arjunanadhi, Kousiganadhi, Sindapalli-Uppodai and Vallampatti Odai, fall under medium vulnerability profile, which indicates that the basin is under moderate stress of water resources. The paper also explores prioritization of sub-basinwise adaptation strategies to climate change based on the vulnerability indices.

Optimal Maintenance Clustering for Rail Track Components Subject to Possession Capacity Constraints

This paper studies the optimal maintenance planning of preventive maintenance and renewal activities for components in a single railway track when the available time for maintenance is limited. The rail-track system consists of several types of components, such as rail, ballast, and switches with different preventive maintenance and renewal intervals. To perform maintenance or renewal on the track, a train free period for maintenance, called a possession, is required. Since a major possession directly affects the regular train schedule, maintenance and renewal activities are clustered as much as possible. In a highly dense and utilized railway network, the possession time on the track is critical since the demand for train operations is very high and a long possession has a severe impact on the regular train schedule. We present an optimization model and investigate the maintenance schedules with and without the possession capacity constraint. In addition, we also integrate the social-economic cost related to the effects of the maintenance time to the variable possession cost into the optimization model. A numerical example is provided to illustrate the model.

Video-On-Demand QoE Evaluation across Different Age-Groups and Its Significance for Network Capacity

Quality of Experience (QoE) drives churn in the broadband networks industry, and good QoE plays a large part in the retention of customers. QoE is known to be affected by the Quality of Service (QoS) factors packet loss probability (PLP), delay and delay jitter caused by the network. Earlier results have shown that the relationship between these QoS factors and QoE is non-linear, and may vary from application to application. We use the network emulator Netem as the basis for experimentation, and evaluate how QoE varies as we change the emulated QoS metrics. Focusing on Video-on-Demand, we discovered that the reported QoE may differ widely for users of different age groups, and that the most demanding age group (the youngest) can require an order of magnitude lower PLP to achieve the same QoE than is required by the most widely studied age group of users. We then used a bottleneck TCP model to evaluate the capacity cost of achieving an order of magnitude decrease in PLP, and found it be (almost always) a 3-fold increase in link capacity that was required.

Effect of Twin Cavities on the Axially Loaded Pile in Clay

Presence of cavities in soil predictably induces ground deformation and changes in soil stress, which might influence adjacent existing pile foundations, though the effect of twin cavities on a nearby pile needs to be understood. This research is an attempt to identify the behaviour of piles subjected to axial load and embedded in cavitied clayey soil. A series of finite element modelling were conducted to investigate the performance of piled foundation located in such soils. The validity of the numerical simulation was evaluated by comparing it with available field test and alternative analytical model. The study involved many parameters such as twin cavities size, depth, spacing between cavities, and eccentricity of cavities from the pile axis on the pile performance subjected to axial load. The study involved many cases; in each case, a critical value has been found in which cavities’ presence has shown minimum impact on the behaviour of pile. Load-displacement relationships of the affecting parameters on the pile behaviour were presented to provide helpful information for designing piled foundation situated near twin underground cavities. It was concluded that the presence of the cavities within the soil mass reduces the ultimate capacity of pile. This reduction differs according to the size and location of the cavity.

Experimental Study of CO2 Absorption in Different Blend Solutions as Solvent for CO2 Capture

Nowadays, removal of CO2 as one of the major contributors to global warming using alternative solvents with high CO2 absorption efficiency, is an important industrial operation. In this study, three amines, including 2-methylpiperazine, potassium sarcosinate and potassium lysinate as potential additives, were added to the potassium carbonate solution as a base solvent for CO2 capture. In order to study the absorption performance of CO2 in terms of loading capacity of CO2 and absorption rate, the absorption experiments in a blend of additives with potassium carbonate were carried out using the vapor-liquid equilibrium apparatus at a temperature of 313.15 K, CO2 partial pressures ranging from 0 to 50 kPa and at mole fractions 0.2, 0.3, and 0.4. Furthermore, the performance of CO2 absorption in these blend solutions was compared with pure monoethanolamine and with pure potassium carbonate. Finally, a correlation with good accuracy was developed using the nonlinear regression analysis in order to predict CO2 loading capacity.

Development of a Cost Effective Two Wheel Tractor Mounted Mobile Maize Sheller for Small Farmers in Bangladesh

Two-wheel tractor (power tiller) is a common tillage tool in Bangladesh agriculture for easy access in fragmented land with affordable price of small farmers. Traditional maize sheller needs to be carried from place to place by hooking with two-wheel tractor (2WT) and set up again for shelling operation which takes longer time for preparation of maize shelling. The mobile maize sheller eliminates the transportation problem and can start shelling operation instantly any place as it is attached together with 2WT. It is counterclockwise rotating cylinder, axial flow type sheller, and grain separated with a frictional force between spike tooth and concave. The maize sheller is attached with nuts and bolts in front of the engine base of 2WT. The operating power of the sheller comes from the fly wheel of the engine of the tractor through ‘V” belt pulley arrangement. The average shelling capacity of the mobile sheller is 2.0 t/hr, broken kernel 2.2%, and shelling efficiency 97%. The average maize shelling cost is Tk. 0.22/kg and traditional custom hire rate is Tk.1.0/kg, respectively (1 US$=Tk.78.0). The service provider of the 2WT can transport the mobile maize sheller long distance in operator’s seating position. The manufacturers started the fabrication of mobile maize sheller. This mobile maize sheller is also compatible for the other countries where 2WT is available for farming operation.

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