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Customer preference modeling provides quantitative assessment of the effects of engineering design attributes on customers’ choices. Utility-based approaches, such as discrete choice model (DCM), and network analysis approaches, such as exponential random graph model (ERGM), have been developed for customer preference modeling. However, no studies have compared these two approaches. Our objective is to identify the distinctions and connections between these two approaches based on both the theoretical foundation and the empirical evidence. Using the vehicle preference modeling as an example, our study shows that when network structure effects are not considered, results from ERGM are consistent with DCM in most of the test cases. However, in one case where customers have varying choice set with multiple alternatives, inconsistencies are observed, possibly due to the discrepancies of the two models in taking different information when calculating choice probabilities. The insights will lead to valuable guidance for choosing the technique for customer preference modeling and co- developing the two frameworks to support engineering design.
The East Kunlun Orogen (EKO) is the NW part of the Central China Orogenic Belt, which records the evolutionary history of the Proto- and Palaeo-Tethys Oceans from the Cambrian to the Triassic. An Early Palaeozoic eclogite belt has been recognized in recent years, which extends discontinuously for ∼500 km as three eclogite-bearing terranes. In this study, we report an integrated study of zircon grains from mica-schists accompanying the eclogites, in terms of mineral inclusions, U–Pb age systematics and P–T conditions. The presence of coesite is identified, as inclusions within the metamorphic domain of zircons, which provides unambiguous evidence for subducted terrigenous clastic rocks of the Proto-Tethys Ocean exhumed from coesite-forming depths. U–Pb dating of the metamorphic zircons yields a concordia age of 426.5 ± 0.88 Ma, which is likely to be the time of ultrahigh-pressure metamorphism in the Kehete terrane. P–T calculations suggest that metapelite may have experienced a clockwise P–T path with peak P/T conditions of 685 ± 41 °C and >28 kbar, and equilibrated at 482–566 °C and 5.6–8.9 kbar during subsequent exhumation. The high-pressure – ultrahigh-pressure (HP-UHP) metamorphic belt within the EKO may have formed by collision between the Qaidam Block and the South Kunlun Block, as a consequence of the closure of the Proto-Tethys Ocean.
Japanese foxtail (Alopecurus japonicus Steud.) is an invasive grass weed that severely threatens the production of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) and canola (Brassica napus L.) crops in eastern Asia. Mesosulfuron-methyl is a highly efficient acetolactate synthase (ALS)-inhibiting herbicide widely used for control of this species in China. However, in recent years, some A. japonicus populations have evolved resistance to mesosulfuron-methyl by different amino acid substitutions (AASs) within the ALS gene. In the current study, 11 populations of A. japonicus were collected from Anhui Province, China, where the wheat fields were severely infested with this weed. Based on single-dose screening, eight of these populations evolved resistance to mesosulfuron-methyl, and gene sequencing revealed three AASs located in codon 197 or 574 of the ALS gene in the different resistant populations. Subsequently, three typical populations, AH-1, AH-4, and AH-10 with Trp-574-Leu, Pro-197-Thr, and Pro-197-Ser mutations, respectively, in ALS genes were selected to characterize their cross-resistance patterns to ALS inhibitors. Compared with the susceptible population AH-S, AH-1 showed broad-spectrum cross-resistance to sulfonylureas (SUs), imidazolinones (IMIs), triazolopyrimidines (TPs), and sulfonyl-aminocarbonyl-triazolinones (SCTs); whereas AH-4 and AH-10 were resistant to SUs, TPs, and SCTs but sensitive to IMIs. Moreover, all three resistant populations were sensitive to both photosystem II inhibitor isoproturon and 4-hydroxyphenylpyruvate dioxygenase inhibitor QYM201 (1-(2-chloro-3-(3-cyclopropyl-5-hydroxy-1-methyl-1H-pyrazole-4-carbonyl)-6-(trifluoromethyl)phenyl)piperidin-2-one). Based on the current state of knowledge, this study is the first report of A. japonicus evolving cross-resistance to ALS-inhibiting herbicides due to a Pro-197-Ser mutation in the ALS gene.
The hydroxyapatite nanoparticles (nHAPs) were synthesized rapidly by the self-assembled dual-frequency ultrasonic method. The ultrasonic time and power effect on the morphology and phase composition of nHAPs were investigated through field-emission scanning electron microscopy (FE-SEM), X-ray diffraction, energy dispersive spectrometer (EDS) spectrometer, and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, which showed that the most uniform nanoparticles were obtained when the ultrasonic time was 30 min and the ultrasonic power was 280 W. Cytotoxicity and hemolysis tests showed that an indistinctive cytotoxic effect was within the concentration of 25–400 μg/mL and the hemolytic ratio was below 2.0% at concentration of 25–200 μg/mL, respectively, revealing a good biocompatibility of nHAPs. By loading tetracycline hydrochloride onto nHAPs spheres, the drug release results showed that the drug loading and encapsulation efficiency were (26.34 ± 2.99)% and (52.68 ± 5.98)%, respectively. The drug-loaded sample shows a slow-release property, indicating that nHAPs may be promising as drug carriers.
We have developed a technique to determine the dissolved solid components of water and other liquids by Energy- Dispersive X-Ray Fluorescence (EDXRF) spectrometry. The liquid samples are presented to the spectrometer as small dried spots of the residue remaining after evaporation of the liquid. The dried residues are mounted on thin plastic films cemented to 35 mm plastic slide mounts. Elements from sodium through uranium are detected with detection limits less than one nanogram in favorable cases. Precision of the measurement is better than 2 % relative in favorable cases for secondary-target excitation, and is typically 5 to 10 % for direct excitation given the geometry of the instrument. Detection limits are as low as a part per billion relative to the original liquid for solutions whose total dissolved solid content is 1000 part per million or less.
A new fundamental-parameter program has been developed which corrects for light element absorption based on the mean atomic number of the sample. The mean atomic number, in turn, is determined from the Compton/Rayleigh scatter intensity ratio. The program is quite flexible with regard to the number and the type of standards which may be used. The accuracy and precision of the method has been evaluated with several geological and biological standards. The results are in good agreement with those obtained by some other methods (CEMAS, XRF-11).
Music or other background sounds are often played in barns as environmental enrichment for animals on farms or to mask sudden disruptive noises. Previous studies looking at the effects of this practice on non-human animal well-being and productivity have found contradictory results. However, there is still a lack of discussion on whether piglets have the ability to distinguish different types of music. In this study, we exposed piglets to different music conditions to investigate whether the piglets preferred certain music types, in which case those types would have the potential to be used as environmental enrichment. In total, 30 piglets were tested for music type preference to determine whether growing pigs respond differently to different types of music. We used music from two families of instruments (S: string, W: wind) and with two tempos (S: slow, 65 beats/min (bpm); F: fast, 200 bpm), providing four music-type combinations (SS: string-slow; SF: string-fast; WS: wind-slow; WF: wind-fast). The piglets were given a choice between two chambers, one with no music and the other with one of the four types of music, and their behaviour was observed. The results showed that SS and WF music significantly increased residence time (P<0.01) compared with the other music conditions. Compared with the control group (with no music), the different music conditions led to different behavioural responses, where SS music significantly increased lying (P<0.01) and exploration behaviour (P<0.01); SF music significantly increased tail-wagging behaviour (P<0.01); WS music significantly increased exploration (P<0.01); and WF music significantly increased walking, lying, standing and exploration (all P<0.01). The results also showed that musical instruments and tempo had little effect on most of the behaviours. Fast-tempo music significantly increased walking (P=0.02), standing (P<0.01) and tail wagging (P=0.04) compared with slow-tempo music. In conclusion, the results of this experiment show that piglets are more sensitive to tempo than to musical instruments in their response to musical stimulation and seem to prefer SS and WF music to the other two types. The results also suggest a need for further research on the effect of music types on animals.
To revise an abbreviated version of the Silhouettes subtest of the Visual Object and Space Perception (VOSP) battery in order to recognize mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and determine the optimal cutoffs to differentiate among cognitively normal controls (NC), MCI, and Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) in the Chinese elderly.
A cross-sectional validation study.
Huashan Hospital, Shanghai, China.
A total of 591 participants: Individuals with MCI (n = 211), AD (n = 139) and NC (n = 241) were recruited from the Memory Clinic, Huashan Hospital, Shanghai, China.
Baseline neuropsychological battery (including VOSP) scores were collected from firsthand data. An abbreviated version of silhouettes test (Silhouettes-A) was revised from the original English version more suitable for the elderly, including eight silhouettes of animals and seven silhouettes of inanimate objects, with a score ranging from 0 to 15.
Silhouettes-A was an effective test to screen MCI in the Chinese elderly with good sensitivity and specificity, similar to the Montreal cognitive assessment and superior to other single tests reflecting language, spatial, or executive function. However, it had no advantage in distinguishing MCI from AD. The corresponding optimal cutoff scores of Silhouettes-A were 10 for screening MCI and 8 for AD.
Silhouettes-A is a quick, simple, sensitive, and dependable cognitive test to distinguish among NC, MCI, and AD patients.
Muons produced by the Bethe–Heitler process from laser wakefield accelerated electrons interacting with high
materials have velocities close to the laser wakefield. It is possible to accelerate those muons with laser wakefield directly. Therefore for the first time we propose an all-optical ‘Generator and Booster’ scheme to accelerate the produced muons by another laser wakefield to supply a prompt, compact, low cost and controllable muon source in laser laboratories. The trapping and acceleration of muons are analyzed by one-dimensional analytic model and verified by two-dimensional particle-in-cell (PIC) simulation. It is shown that muons can be trapped in a broad energy range and accelerated to higher energy than that of electrons for longer dephasing length. We further extrapolate the dependence of the maximum acceleration energy of muons with the laser wakefield relativistic factor
and the relevant initial energy
. It is shown that a maximum energy up to 15.2 GeV is promising with
on the existing short pulse laser facilities.
In inertial confinement fusion experiments that involve short-laser pulses such as fast ignition (FI), diagnosis of neutrons is usually very challenging because high-intensity γ rays generated by short-laser pulses would mask the much weaker neutron signal. In this paper, fast-response scintillators with low afterglow and gated microchannel plate photomultiplier tubes are combined to build neutron time-of-flight (nTOF) spectrometers for such experiments. Direct-drive implosion experiments of deuterium-gas-filled capsules were performed at the Shenguang-II Upgrade (SG-II-UP) laser facility to study the compressed fuel areal density (〈ρR〉) and evaluate the performance of such nTOF diagnostics. Two newly developed quenched liquid scintillator detectors and a gated ultrafast plastic scintillator detector were used to measure the secondary DT neutrons and primary DD neutrons, respectively. The secondary neutron signals were clearly discriminated from the γ rays from (n, γ) reactions, and the compressed fuel areal density obtained with the yield-ratio method agrees well with the simulations. Additionally, a small scintillator decay tail and a clear DD neutron signal were observed in an integrated FI experiment as a result of the low afterglow of the oxygen-quenched liquid scintillator.
As important epigenetic regulators, microRNA regulate protein expression by triggering the degradation of target mRNA and/or by inhibiting their translation. Dysregulation of microRNA expression has been reported in several cancers, including colorectal cancer. In this study, microRNA-array differential analysis revealed strongly enhanced expression of miR-24-1-5p in the colon tissue of azoxymethane/dextran sulphate sodium-induced mice that were fed with black raspberry anthocyanins for 9 weeks. Overexpression of miR-24-1-5p in human colorectal cancer cells significantly repressed β-catenin expression, and simultaneously decreased cell proliferation, migration and survival. Furthermore, miR-24-1-5p could target β-catenin and trigger a negative regulatory loop for β-catenin and its downstream target genes. β-Catenin signalling is vital to the formation and progression of human colorectal cancer. The current findings therefore identified miR-24-1-5p as a potent regulator of β-catenin, and this may provide a novel chemopreventive and therapeutic strategy for β-catenin signalling-driven colorectal cancer.
This paper presents a model-based approach for the first time to identify the crack location for the hinge-based planar RRR compliant mechanism, a parallel micro-motion stage driven by piezoelectric (PZT) actuators. However, cracks more likely occur on a flexure hinge because it usually undergoes a periodic deformation in service, which eventually compromises mechanism's performance, positioning accuracy for instance. In this work, the pseudo-rigid-body method is used to develop kinematic and dynamic models of the RRR mechanism both in healthy and damaged conditions, where the crack is considered in terms of the rotational compliance of a flexible hinge. The crack location is determined by measuring PZT elongations, which represents the driving toque deviation because of the crack presence. Numerical simulation is conducted to verify the proposed approach, and the results show good match of the identified crack location with the assumed location. Finally, experiments on the RRR mechanism with a prefabricated crack is performed to further validate the proposed models; the experimental results yield a good consistence.
Optical isolators, devices that only allow unidirectional light propagation, constitute an essential building block for photonic integrated circuits. For near-infrared communications wavelengths, most current isolator designs rely on the incorporation of magneto-optical (MO) materials to break time-reversal symmetry, such as iron garnets or magnetically substituted semiconductors. MO garnets form the backbone of traditional bulk isolators, but suffer from large lattice and thermal mismatch with common semiconductor substrates, which has significantly impeded their integration into on-chip optical isolators. Materials innovations over the past few years have overcome these barriers and enabled monolithic deposition of MO oxide thin films on silicon using techniques such as pulsed laser deposition and magnetron sputtering. On-chip optical isolator devices with polarization diversity in the telecommunication band have been demonstrated based on these materials. This article reviews the latest technological breakthroughs in MO oxide material growth as well as device design and integration strategies toward practical implementation of on-chip optical isolation.