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We describe the design and deployment of GREENBURST, a commensal Fast Radio Burst (FRB) search system at the Green Bank Telescope. GREENBURST uses the dedicated L-band receiver tap to search over the 960–1 920 MHz frequency range for pulses with dispersion measures out to
. Due to its unique design, GREENBURST is capable of conducting searches for FRBs when the L-band receiver is not being used for scheduled observing. This makes it a sensitive single pixel detector capable of reaching deeper in the radio sky. While single pulses from Galactic pulsars and rotating radio transients will be detectable in our observations, and will form part of the database we archive, the primary goal is to detect and study FRBs. Based on recent determinations of the all-sky rate, we predict that the system will detect approximately one FRB for every 2–3 months of continuous operation. The high sensitivity of GREENBURST means that it will also be able to probe the slope of the FRB fluence distribution, which is currently uncertain in this observing band.
The methodical recording and representation of spatial data are central to archaeological fieldwork and research. Until recently, centimeter-level precise geolocation equipment was the exclusive domain of researchers who could afford setups costing tens of thousands of dollars. However, high-quality measurements are being made more accessible by rapidly evolving technologies. These new tools, when used together with mobile technology for efficiently recording field data, open up the possibility of capturing the precise location of every find during an archaeological surface survey. An important step in reaching the desired outcome—centimeter-level recording for all—is experimentation with a variety of emerging low-cost setups. Accordingly, we tested the Reach and Reach RS, differential global navigation satellite systems (dGNSS) equipment produced by the company Emlid, during a surface survey in Armenia in June 2018. Our field application demonstrates that the use of dGNSS is already possible and that the described advances in precision enable improved recording and representation of spatial data.
Good education requires student experiences that deliver lessons about practice as well as theory and that encourage students to work for the public good—especially in the operation of democratic institutions (Dewey 1923; Dewy 1938). We report on an evaluation of the pedagogical value of a research project involving 23 colleges and universities across the country. Faculty trained and supervised students who observed polling places in the 2016 General Election. Our findings indicate that this was a valuable learning experience in both the short and long terms. Students found their experiences to be valuable and reported learning generally and specifically related to course material. Postelection, they also felt more knowledgeable about election science topics, voting behavior, and research methods. Students reported interest in participating in similar research in the future, would recommend other students to do so, and expressed interest in more learning and research about the topics central to their experience. Our results suggest that participants appreciated the importance of elections and their study. Collectively, the participating students are engaged and efficacious—essential qualities of citizens in a democracy.
Traumatic stressors during childhood and adolescence are associated with psychopathology, mostly studied in the context of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression. We investigated broader associations of traumatic stress exposure with psychopathology and cognition in a youth community sample.
The Philadelphia Neurodevelopmental Cohort (N = 9498) is an investigation of clinical and neurobehavioral phenotypes in a diverse (56% Caucasian, 33% African American, 11% other) US youth community population (aged 8–21). Participants were ascertained through children's hospital pediatric (not psychiatric) healthcare network in 2009–2011. Structured psychiatric evaluation included screening for lifetime exposure to traumatic stressors, and a neurocognitive battery was administered.
Exposure rate to traumatic stressful events was high (none, N = 5204; one, N = 2182; two, N = 1092; three or more, N = 830). Higher stress load was associated with increased psychopathology across all clinical domains evaluated: mood/anxiety (standardized β = .378); psychosis spectrum (β = .360); externalizing behaviors (β = .311); and fear (β = .256) (controlling for covariates, all p < 0.001). Associations remained significant controlling for lifetime PTSD and depression. Exposure to high-stress load was robustly associated with suicidal ideation and cannabis use (odds ratio compared with non-exposed 5.3 and 3.2, respectively, both p < 0.001). Among youths who experienced traumatic stress (N = 4104), history of assaultive trauma was associated with greater psychopathology and, in males, vulnerability to psychosis and externalizing symptoms. Stress load was negatively associated with performance on executive functioning, complex reasoning, and social cognition.
Traumatic stress exposure in community non-psychiatric help-seeking youth is substantial, and is associated with more severe psychopathology and neurocognitive deficits across domains, beyond PTSD and depression.
The SETI@home project has recently completed its third year of active data analysis. Over 4 million volunteers have joined the search, providing a combined total of over 1 million CPU-years of processing power. SETI@home performs a sensitive search for extraterrestrial signals in a 2.5 MHz band centered on 1420 MHz. SETI@home searches a wide parameter space including 14 octaves of signal bandwidth and 15 octaves of pulse period with Doppler drift corrections from −50 Hz/s to +50 Hz/s. We will briefly describe the SETI@home project and the algorithms used in the SETI@home client. We will describe the post-processing methods we use to reject RFI and select candidate signals from the nearly 4 billion “hits” returned by SETI@home clients.
Here, we present initial results from the ALFABURST radio transient survey, which is currently running in a commensal mode with the ALFA receiver at the Arecibo telescope. We observed for a total of 1400 hours and have detected single pulses from known pulsars but did not detect any FRBs. The non-detection of FRBs is consistent with the current FRB sky rates.
We have performed exact numerical calculations of the Stokes parameters I, Q, and U for optically and Faraday thick inhomogeneous relativistic jets. We consider how changes in Faraday depth, as well as in the observer-jet geometry, change the resolved and unresolved properties of the jet.
Objectives: Neuropsychological studies of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) have revealed deficits in attention/working memory, processing speed, executive functioning, and retrospective memory. However, little is known about prospective memory (PM) in PTSD, a clinically relevant aspect of episodic memory that supports the encoding and retrieval of intentions for future actions. Methods: Here we examined PM performance in 40 veterans with PTSD compared to 38 trauma comparison (TC) veterans who were exposed to combat but did not develop PTSD. All participants were administered the Memory for Intentions Test (MIST; Raskin, Buckheit, & Sherrod, 2010), a standardized and validated measure of PM, alongside a comprehensive neurocognitive battery, structured diagnostic interviews for psychiatric conditions, and behavioral questionnaires. Results: Veterans with PTSD performed moderately lower than TC on time-based PM, with errors primarily characterized as PM failure errors (i.e., omissions). However, groups did not differ in event-based PM, ongoing task performance, or post-test recognition of PM intentions for each trial. Lower time-based PM performance was specifically related to hyperarousal symptoms of PTSD. Time-based-performance was also associated with neuropsychological measures of retrospective memory and executive functions in the PTSD group. Nevertheless, PTSD was significantly associated with poorer PM above and beyond age and performance in retrospective memory and executive functions. Discussion: Results provide initial evidence of PM dysfunction in PTSD, especially in strategic monitoring during time-based PM tasks. Findings have potential implications for everyday functioning and health behaviors in persons with PTSD, and deserve replication and future study. (JINS, 2016, 22, 724–734)
Objectives: Numerous studies have shown that individuals with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) display reduced performances on neuropsychological tests, although most prior research has not adequately accounted for comorbidities or performance validity concerns that are common in this population and could partially account for the observed neurocognitive findings. Moreover, few studies have examined the functional implications of neuropsychological results in PTSD. Methods: We examined neuropsychological functioning in 44 veterans with PTSD and 40 veteran trauma comparison (TC) participants with combat exposure and no PTSD. Results: After excluding four veterans with PTSD for performance validity concerns, multivariate analyses of variance by neurocognitive domain revealed significantly worse performance by the PTSD group in the domains of speed of information processing (p=.035) and executive functions (p=.017), but no group differences in attention/working memory, verbal/language functioning, visuoconstruction, or episodic memory. Group differences by PTSD status were still present after covarying for depression, a history of head injuries, and substance use disorders. Executive functioning performance was associated with poorer self-reported occupational functioning and physical health-related quality of life, while speed of information processing performance was associated with poorer physical health-related quality of life. Discussion: These results are generally consistent with a fronto-limbic conceptualization of PTSD-associated neuropsychological dysfunction and show that cognitive functioning may be associated with critical functional outcomes. Taken together, results suggest that consideration of neurocognitive functioning may enhance the clinical management of individuals with PTSD. (JINS, 2016, 22, 399–411)
Influenza A (H1N1) pdm09 became the predominant circulating strain in the United States during the 2013–2014 influenza season. Little is known about the epidemiology of severe influenza during this season.
A retrospective cohort study of severely ill patients with influenza infection in intensive care units in 33 US hospitals from September 1, 2013, through April 1, 2014, was conducted to determine risk factors for mortality present on intensive care unit admission and to describe patient characteristics, spectrum of disease, management, and outcomes.
A total of 444 adults and 63 children were admitted to an intensive care unit in a study hospital; 93 adults (20.9%) and 4 children (6.3%) died. By logistic regression analysis, the following factors were significantly associated with mortality among adult patients: older age (>65 years, odds ratio, 3.1 [95% CI, 1.4–6.9], P=.006 and 50–64 years, 2.5 [1.3–4.9], P=.007; reference age 18–49 years), male sex (1.9 [1.1–3.3], P=.031), history of malignant tumor with chemotherapy administered within the prior 6 months (12.1 [3.9–37.0], P<.001), and a higher Sequential Organ Failure Assessment score (for each increase by 1 in score, 1.3 [1.2–1.4], P<.001).
Risk factors for death among US patients with severe influenza during the 2013–2014 season, when influenza A (H1N1) pdm09 was the predominant circulating strain type, shifted in the first postpandemic season in which it predominated toward those of a more typical epidemic influenza season.
Infect. Control Hosp. Epidemiol. 2015;36(11):1251–1260
The present study compared executive dysfunction among children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) after traumatic brain injury (TBI), also called secondary ADHD (S-ADHD), pre-injury ADHD and children with TBI only (i.e., no ADHD). Youth aged 6–16 years admitted for TBI to five trauma centers were enrolled (n=177) and evaluated with a semi-structured psychiatric interview scheduled on three occasions (within 2 weeks of TBI, i.e., baseline assessment for pre-injury status; 6-months and 12-months post-TBI). This permitted the determination of 6- and 12-month post-injury classifications of membership in three mutually exclusive groups (S-ADHD; pre-injury ADHD; TBI-only). Several executive control measures were administered. Unremitted S-ADHD was present in 17/141 (12%) children at the 6-month assessment, and in 14/125 (11%) children at 12-months post-injury. The study found that children with S-ADHD exhibited deficient working memory, attention, and psychomotor speed as compared to children with pre-injury ADHD. Furthermore, the children with S-ADHD and the children with TBI-only were impaired compared to the children with pre-injury ADHD with regard to planning. No group differences related to response inhibition emerged. Age, but not injury severity, gender, or adaptive functioning was related to executive function outcome. Neuropsychological sequelae distinguish among children who develop S-ADHD following TBI and those with TBI only. Moreover, there appears to be a different pattern of executive control performance in those who develop S-ADHD than in children with pre-injury ADHD suggesting that differences exist in the underlying neural mechanisms that define each disorder, underscoring the need to identify targeted treatment interventions. (JINS, 2014, 20, 971–981)
Although beta-amyloid, anxiety and depression have been linked cross-sectionally to reduced memory function in healthy older adults without dementia, prospective data evaluating these associations are lacking. Using data from an observational cohort study of 178 healthy older adults without dementia followed for 3 years, we found that anxiety symptoms significantly moderated the relationship between beta-amyloid level and decline in verbal (Cohen's d = 0.65) and episodic (Cohen's d = 0.38) memory. Anxiety symptoms were additionally linked to greater decline in executive function, irrespective of beta-amyloid and other risk factors. These findings suggest that interventions to mitigate anxiety symptoms may help delay memory decline in otherwise healthy older adults with elevated beta-amyloid.
Script generation describes one's ability to produce complex, sequential action plans derived from mental representations of everyday activities. The aim of this study was to assess the effect of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection on script generation performance. Sixty HIV+ individuals (48% of whom had HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders [HAND]) and 26 demographically comparable HIV- participants were administered a novel, standardized test of script generation, which required participants to verbally generate and organize the necessary steps for completing six daily activities. HAND participants evidenced significantly more total errors, intrusions, and script boundary errors compared to the HIV- sample, indicating difficulties inhibiting irrelevant actions and staying within the prescribed boundaries of scripts, but had adequate knowledge of the relevant actions required for each script. These findings are generally consistent with the executive dysfunction and slowing common in HAND and suggest that script generation may play a role in everyday functioning problems in HIV. (JINS, 2011, 17, 740–745)
Extreme Ultraviolet (EUV) lithography is gaining momentum as the patterning technology of choice for the semiconductor nodes with less than 70-nm half-pitch. As such, it must be ready for manufacturing in the 2006-2007 time frame, and it must be extendable to the lower limits of CMOS technology. Successful patterning of 40-nm dense lines in viable EUV photoresists indicates that today's resist materials may have the necessary resolution, but better optics are needed to verify this more rigorously. Although little is understood about the impact of line-edge roughness (LER) on device performance, it is generally assumed that EUV LER must be less than 3 nm 3σ. EUV lines have been printed with LER as low as 4 nm 3σ, but they were printed with unacceptable photospeed. Deliberate attempts to increase the photospeed while maintaining low LER have produced a resist with sizing dose of 1.7 mJ/cm2 and LER of 6.6 nm 3σ. Photospeed is important because EUV photons are difficult to create, and the photoresist must use them efficiently for economically acceptable throughput. Throughput models indicate that patterning doses may need to be 1-2 mJ/cm2, and only 30-40% of these photons will be absorbed, so the resists must be able to accommodate statistical dose fluctuations that are an appreciable fraction of the mean dose. Highly sensitive resists such as these have been produced with good LER. Since all resist materials absorb EUV radiation strongly, the photoresist layer will have to be less than 150 nm thick. Resists this thin pose problems for device manufacturing, largely because they will not have acceptable etch resistance, and this etch resistance will have to be recovered in some other way. Efforts have begun to integrate hard masks with thin resists in real device fabrication. Defect data indicate that defect densities do not increase in resist films less than 100 nm thick, and transistors, via chains, and microprocessors have all been fabricated with these thin-resist/hard-mask integrations.
In the cerebellum, lamellar Bergmann glial (BG) appendages wrap tightly around almost every Purkinje cell dendritic spine. The function of this glial ensheathment of spines is not entirely understood. The development of ensheathment begins near the onset of synaptogenesis, when motility of both BG processes and dendritic spines are high. By the end of the synaptogenic period, ensheathment is complete and motility of the BG processes decreases, correlating with the decreased motility of dendritic spines. We therefore have hypothesized that ensheathment is intimately involved in capping synaptogenesis, possibly by stabilizing synapses. To test this hypothesis, we misexpressed GluR2 in an adenoviral vector in BG towards the end of the synaptogenic period, rendering the BG α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptors (AMPARs) Ca2+-impermeable and causing glial sheath retraction. We then measured the resulting spine motility, spine density and synapse number. Although we found that decreasing ensheathment at this time does not alter spine motility, we did find a significant increase in both synaptic pucta and dendritic spine density. These results indicate that consistent spine coverage by BG in the cerebellum is not necessary for stabilization of spine dynamics, but is very important in the regulation of synapse number.