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The democratisation of design permits greater stakeholder involvement in what has traditionally been a domain reserved for experts; the design process itself. This is enabled by technological advances in fields such as 3D printing, virtual reality and high-speed peer to peer communication technologies which have fuelled the development of new and innovative design methods. This paper compares and contrasts different approaches to the democratisation of design, and in particular, those that aim to involve wider stakeholders in the design process itself. Three different approaches(design by play, design by generation and crowdsourcing for design) are defined and contextualised within existing design frameworks and their respective suitabilities to democratise different design phases are considered. An exemplar use case of each approach is presented in order to assess how stakeholder engagement is affected by each democratising strategy. The discussion compares and contrasts the approaches with respect to their applicability and utility for different stages of the design process and how the power dynamics of the design process are altered when the different approaches are employed.
While extensive modelling - both physical and virtual - is imperative to develop right-first-time products, the parallel use of virtual and physical models gives rise to two interrelated issues: the lack of revision control for physical prototypes; and the need for designers to manually inspect, measure, and interpret modifications to either virtual or physical models, for subsequent update of the other. The Digital Twin paradigm addresses similar problems later in the product life-cycle, and while these digital twins, or the “twinning” process, have shown significant value, there is little work to date on their implementation in the earlier design stages. With large prospective benefits in increased product understanding, performance, and reduced design cycle time and cost, this paper explores the concept of using the Digital Twin in early design, including an introduction to digital twinning, examination of opportunities for and challenges of their implementation, a presentation of the structure of Early Stage Twins, and evaluation via two implementation cases.
Red Supergiant Stars (RSGs) are important probes of stellar and chemical evolution in star-forming environments. They represent the brightest near-IR stellar components of external galaxies and probe the most recent stellar population to provide robust, independent abundance estimates. The Local Group dwarf irregular galaxy, NGC6822, is a reasonably isolated galaxy with an interesting structure and turbulent history. Using RSGs as chemical abundance probes, we estimate metallicities in the central region of NGC6822, finding a suggestion of a metallicity gradient (in broad agreement with nebular tracers), however, this requires further study for confirmation. With intermediate resolution Multi-object spectroscopy (from e.g. KMOS, EMIR, MOSFIRE) combined with state-of-the-art stellar model atmospheres, we demonstrate how RSGs can be used to estimate stellar abundances in external galaxies. In this context, we compare stellar and nebular abundance tracers in NGC 6822 and by combining stellar and nebular tracers we estimate an abundance gradient of −0.18 ± 0.05 dex/kpc.
This study examined the efficacy of an evidence-based supportive leadership program to address psychosocial hazards identified in an organisational health review of a government department. Participants were employees identified as having supervisory and management roles (N = 57; males = 30, females = 27; age range 22 to 63). The program was implemented systematically over a 6-month period using 2 × 2 day intensive workshops, interim 360 peer review assessment and 1-day follow-up. The program used a variety of behavioural learning approaches with individual and group feedback from professional, peer and self-review. The results showed a major improvement in organisational health with significant changes in risk status across the domains of Relationship, Manager and Peer Support. Improvements in organisational health made within the leadership group had generalised across the entire workforce and continued to be maintained at the 18-month follow-up.
Squalor is an epiphenomenon associated with a range of medical and psychiatric conditions. People living in squalor are not well described in the literature, and prior work has indicated that up to 50% do not have a psychiatric diagnosis. Squalor appears to be linked with neuropsychological deficits suggestive of the presence of impaired executive function. We present a case series of people living in squalor that examines their neuropsychological assessment and diagnosis.
Clinicians from local health networks were invited to submit neuropsychological reports of patients living in squalor. These selected reports were screened to ensure the presence of squalor and a comprehensive examination of a set of core neuropsychological domains. Assessments were included if basic attention, visuospatial reasoning, information processing speed, memory function, and executive function were assessed.
Sixty-nine neuropsychological reports were included. Sixty-eight per cent of the group underwent neuropsychological assessments during an inpatient admission. For participants where it was available (52/69), the mean Mini-Mental State Examination score was 25.29 (SD = 3.96). Neuropsychological assessment showed a range of cognitive impairment with nearly all the participants (92.75%) found to have frontal executive dysfunction. One person had an unimpaired neuropsychological assessment. Results indicated that dorsolateral prefrontal rather than orbitofrontal functions were more likely to be impaired. Vascular etiology was the most common cause implicated by neuropsychologists.
Frontal executive dysfunction was a prominent finding in the neuropsychological profiles of our sample of squalor patients, regardless of their underlying medical or psychiatric diagnoses. Our study highlights the importance of considering executive dysfunction when assessing patients who live in squalor.
An enormous effort is underway worldwide to attempt to detect gravitational waves. If successful, this will open a new frontier in astronomy. An essential portion of this effort is being carried out in Australia by the Australian Consortium for Interferometric Gravitational Astronomy (ACIGA), with research teams working at the Australia National University, University of Western Australia, and University of Adelaide involving scientists and students representing many more institutions and nations. ACIGA is developing ultrastable high-power continuous-wave lasers for the next generation interferometric gravity wave detectors; researching the problems associated with high optical power in resonant cavities; opening frontiers in advanced interferometry configurations, quantum optics, and signal extraction; and is the world's leader in high-performance vibration isolation and suspension design. ACIGA has also been active in theoretical research and modelling of potential astronomical gravitational wave sources, and in developing data analysis detection algorithms. ACIGA has opened a research facility north of Perth, Western Australia, which will be the culmination of these efforts. This paper briefly reviews ACIGA's research activities and the prospects for gravitational wave astronomy in the southern hemisphere.
Electronic systems are a very good platform for sensing biological signals for fast point-of-care diagnostics or threat detection. One of the solutions is the lab-on-a-chip integrated circuit (IC), which is low cost and high reliability, offering the possibility for label-free detection. In recent years, similar integrated biosensors based on the conventional complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) technology have been reported. However, post-fabrication processes are essential for all classes of CMOS biochips, requiring biocompatible electrode deposition and circuit encapsulation.
In this work, we present an amorphous silicon (a-Si) thin film transistor (TFT) array based sensing approach, which greatly simplifies the fabrication procedures and even decreases the cost of the biosensor. The device contains several identical sensor pixels with amplifiers to boost the sensitivity. Ring oscillator and logic circuits are also integrated to achieve different measurement methodologies, including electro-analytical methods such as amperometric and cyclic voltammetric modes. The system also supports different operational modes. For example, depending on the required detection arrangement, a sample droplet could be placed on the sensing pads or the device could be immersed into the sample solution for real time in-situ measurement. The entire system is designed and fabricated using a low temperature TFT process that is compatible to plastic substrates. No additional processing is required prior to biological measurement. A Cr/Au double layer is used for the biological-electronic interface. The success of the TFT-based system used in this work will open new avenues for flexible label-free or low-cost disposable biosensors.
Load transfer and mechanical strength of reinforced polymers are fundamental to developing advanced composites. This paper demonstrates enhanced load transfer and mechanical strength due to synergistic effects in binary mixtures of nano-carbon/polymer composites. Different compositional mixtures (always 1 wt. % total) of multi-wall carbon nanotubes (MWNTs) and single-layer graphene (SLG) were mixed in polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS), and effects on load transfer and mechanical strength were studied using Raman spectroscopy. Significant shifts in the G-bands were observed both in tension and compression for single as well binary nano-carbon counterparts in polymer composites. Small amounts of MWNT0.1 dispersed in SLG0.9/PDMS samples (subscripts represents weight percentage) reversed the sign of the Raman wavenumbers from positive to negative values demonstrating reversal of lattice stress. A wavenumber change from 10 cm-1 in compression (-10% strain) to 10 cm-1 in tension (50% strain), and an increase in elastic modulus of ∼103% was observed for MWNT0.1SLG0.9/PDMS with applied uniaxial tension. Presence of MWNTs in the matrix reduced the segmental polymeric chain length and provided limited extensibility to the chains. This in turn eliminated compressive deformation of SLG and significantly enhanced load transfer and mechanical strength of composites in tension. The orientation order of MWNT with application of uniaxial tensile strain directly affected the shift in Raman wavenumbers (2D band and G-band) and load transfer. It is observed that the cooperative behavior of binary nano-carbons in polymer composites resulted in enhanced load transfer and mechanical strength. Such binary compositions could be fundamental to developing advanced composites.
Background: The Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) is an instrument for screening mild cognitive impairment (MCI). This study examined the psychometric properties and the validity of the Taiwan version of the MoCA (MoCA-T) in an elderly outpatient population.
Methods: Participants completed the MoCA-T, Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE), and the Chinese Version Verbal Learning Test. The diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease (AD) was made based on the NINCDS-ADRDA criteria, and MCI was diagnosed through the criteria proposed by Petersen et al. (2001).
Results: Data were collected from 207 participants (115 males/92 females, mean age: 77.3 ± 7.5 years). Ninety-eight participants were diagnosed with AD, 71 with MCI, and 38 were normal controls. The area under the receiver operator curves (AUC) for predicting AD was 0.98 (95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.97–1.00) for the MMSE, and 0.99 (95% CI = 0.98–1.00) for the MoCA-T. The AUC for predicting MCI was 0.81 (95% CI = 0.72–0.89) using the MMSE and 0.91 (95% CI = 0.86–1.00) using the MoCA-T. Using an optimal cut-off score of 23/24, the MoCA-T had a sensitivity of 92% and specificity of 78% for MCI. Item response theory analysis indicated that the level of information provided by each subtest of the MoCA-T was consistent. The frontal and language subscales provided higher discriminating power than the other subscales in the detection of MCI.
Conclusion: Compared to the MMSE, the MoCA-T provides better psychometric properties in the detection of MCI. The utility of the MoCA-T is optimal in mild to moderate cognitive dysfunction.
The next ESA spatial mission planned to study the Sun, Solar Orbiter (SO), necessitates very innovative EUV detectors. The commonly used silicon detectors suffer important limitations mainly in terms of UV robustness and dark current level. An alternative comes from diamond or III-nitride materials. In these materials, the radiation hardness, solar blindness and dark current are improved due to their wide bandgap. This paper presents the new developments on wide bandgap materials at the Royal Observatory of Belgium (ROB). We present also the LYRA instrument, the BOLD project, and the EUI instrument suite.
Nanotechnology is currently undergoing unprecedented development in various fields. There has been a widespread interest in the application of nanomaterials in medicine with its promise of improving imaging, diagnostics, and therapy. The recent advances in engineering and technology have led to the development of new nanoscale platforms such as quantum dots, gold nanocrystals, superparamagnetic nanocrystals, and other semiconductor nanoparticles. Literature on the applications of quantum dots in life sciences has recently increased in number. This may have led to predictions that nanotechnology in life sciences research will contribute $3.4 billion by 2010 while institutions have predicted that the market for nanotechnology and corresponding products will reach $1 trillion in 2012 (1).
Ocean NanoTech is at the height of developmental stages of nanoparticle production for biological applications. Ocean’s high quantum-yield quantum dots (QDs) is currently being tested and used for cell imaging, as wells as for the detection of proteins, DNA, whole cells, and whole organisms. Imaging of cells involves conjugation of QDs to highly sensitive and specific antibody to form QD˜Ab conjugates that attach to specific protein target on the cell surface. Attachment of the QD˜Ab on the cell surface allows imaging of the cell under a fluorescence microscope. QD based imaging can be used in a multiplex immunoassay detection of several types of cells (or microorganisms) in a single sample when several size tunable quantum dots are used as reporter probes.
We report the QD imaging of breast cancer cells. Using the breast cancer cell line SK-BR3, which expresses high levels of her2 antigens on the cell surface, anti-her2 were conjugated to Ocean’s quantum dots, QSH620. To eliminate non-specific binding of the QD˜20Ab Ocean’s super blocking buffer BBB and BBG were used. Preliminary results of in vitro studies indicated that QD based systems can be used to image cells. We anticipate that this system can be transferred to in vivo detection.
This paper analyses flight trial results to study the overall performance and limitations of a GPS/Pseudolite/INS integration approach for aircraft precision approach and landing applications. For this purpose, the series of approaches were flown at Wedderburn Airfield, Australia. The analysed results show that pseudolite signals strengthen the ranging signal availability and the satellite geometry. Most of the geometry enhancement is found in the vertical position component, improving the accuracy of the aircraft's altitude. Furthermore, the results reveal that the inclusion of a pseudolite enhances both internal and external reliabilities. A dramatic improvement of the external reliability in the vertical component is observed.