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The Square Kilometre Array (SKA) is a planned large radio interferometer designed to operate over a wide range of frequencies, and with an order of magnitude greater sensitivity and survey speed than any current radio telescope. The SKA will address many important topics in astronomy, ranging from planet formation to distant galaxies. However, in this work, we consider the perspective of the SKA as a facility for studying physics. We review four areas in which the SKA is expected to make major contributions to our understanding of fundamental physics: cosmic dawn and reionisation; gravity and gravitational radiation; cosmology and dark energy; and dark matter and astroparticle physics. These discussions demonstrate that the SKA will be a spectacular physics machine, which will provide many new breakthroughs and novel insights on matter, energy, and spacetime.
The bulk van der Waals crystal Mn3Si2Te6 (MST) has been irradiated with a proton beam of 2 MeV at a fluence of 1×1018 H+ cm-2. The temperature dependent magnetization measurements show a drastic decrease in the magnetization of 49.2% in the H//c direction observed in ferrimagnetic state. This decrease in magnetization is also reflected in the isothermal magnetization curves. No significant change in the ferrimagnetic transition temperature (75 K) was reflected after irradiation. Electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy shows no magnetically active defects present after irradiation. Here, experimental findings gathered from MST bulk crystals via magnetic measurements, magnetocaloric effect, and heat capacity are discussed.
van der Waals (vdW) magnetic materials show promise in being the foundation for future spintronic technology. The magnetic behavior of Fe2.7GeTe2 (FGT), a vdW itinerant ferromagnet, was investigated before and after proton irradiation. Proton irradiation of the sample was carried out at a fluence of 1×1018 cm-2. The magnetization measurements revealed a small increase of saturation magnetization (Ms) of about 4% upon proton irradiation of the sample, in which, the magnetic field was applied parallel to the c-axis. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy for pristine and irradiated FGT revealed a general decrease in intensity after irradiation for Ge and Te and an increase in peak intensity of unavoidable surface iron oxide. Furthermore, no noticeable change in the Curie temperature (TC =152 K) is observed in temperature dependent magnetization variation. This work signifies the importance of employing protons in tuning the magnetic properties of vdW materials.
Cultivated pastures in southern China are being used to improve forage productivity and animal performance, but studies on grazing behaviour of goats in these cultivated pastures are still rare. In the current study, the grazing behaviour of Yunling black goats under low (5 goats/ha) and high (15 goats/ha) stocking rates (SRs) was evaluated. Data showed that the proportion of time goats spent on activities was: eating (0.59–0.87), ruminating (0.05–0.35), walking (0.03–0.06) and resting (0.01–0.03). Compared with low SR, goats spent more time eating and walking, and less time ruminating and resting under high SR. Goats had similar diet preferences under both SR and preferred to eat grasses (ryegrass and cocksfoot) more than a legume (white clover). The distribution of eating time on each forage species was more uniform under high v. low SR. Bites/step, bite weight and daily intake were greater under low than high SR. Results suggest that the SR affects grazing behaviour of goats on cultivated pasture, and identifying an optimal SR is critical for increasing bite weight and intake.
The triplite LiFeSO4F displays both the highest potential ever reported for an Fe-based compound, as well as a comparable specific energy with that of popular LiFePO4. The synthesis is still a challenge because the present approaches are connected with long time, special equipments or organic reagents, etc. In this work, the triplite LiFeSO4F powder was synthesized through an ambient two-step solid-state route. The reaction process and phase purity were analyzed, coupled with structure refinement and electrochemical test.
The discovery of the first electromagnetic counterpart to a gravitational wave signal has generated follow-up observations by over 50 facilities world-wide, ushering in the new era of multi-messenger astronomy. In this paper, we present follow-up observations of the gravitational wave event GW170817 and its electromagnetic counterpart SSS17a/DLT17ck (IAU label AT2017gfo) by 14 Australian telescopes and partner observatories as part of Australian-based and Australian-led research programs. We report early- to late-time multi-wavelength observations, including optical imaging and spectroscopy, mid-infrared imaging, radio imaging, and searches for fast radio bursts. Our optical spectra reveal that the transient source emission cooled from approximately 6 400 K to 2 100 K over a 7-d period and produced no significant optical emission lines. The spectral profiles, cooling rate, and photometric light curves are consistent with the expected outburst and subsequent processes of a binary neutron star merger. Star formation in the host galaxy probably ceased at least a Gyr ago, although there is evidence for a galaxy merger. Binary pulsars with short (100 Myr) decay times are therefore unlikely progenitors, but pulsars like PSR B1534+12 with its 2.7 Gyr coalescence time could produce such a merger. The displacement (~2.2 kpc) of the binary star system from the centre of the main galaxy is not unusual for stars in the host galaxy or stars originating in the merging galaxy, and therefore any constraints on the kick velocity imparted to the progenitor are poor.
The present study investigated the effects of different levels of urea nitrogen (N) fertilizer on nutrient accumulation, in vitro rumen gas production and fermentation characteristics of forage oat straw (FOS) from oats (Avena sativa L. ‘Qinghai 444’) grown in the Tibet region of China. Fertilizer, applied at seeding (day 1), stem elongation (days 52–54) and heading (days 63–67), increased plant height and prolonged the maturity stage of the plant by 4–11 days compared with the non-fertilized control. Oat plants were harvested at maturity at the node 3–4 cm above ground, and then separated into grains and FOS. Both FOS and grain yields increased quadratically with increasing N fertilization, and their theoretical maximums occurred at the N fertilizing rates of 439 and 385 kg/ha, respectively. Increases in N fertilization did not affect the hemicellulose content of FOS, but substantially promoted the accumulation of crude protein, cellulose and lignin, resulting in a decrease in the energy content available for metabolism. A 72-h incubation of FOS with rumen fluids from lactating cows showed that increasing N resulted in FOS that showed a slower fermentation rate, decreased in vitro dry matter disappearance and lower cumulative gas production, but unchanged fermentation gas composition. Nitrogen fertilization increased the final pH in culture fluids and decreased the microbial volatile fatty acid (VFA) production. The molar proportions of acetate and propionate were not affected, but molar propionate proportion decreased linearly with increasing urea fertilization, and consequently, the ratio of lipogenic (e.g., acetate and butyrate)-to-glucogenic acids (propionate) tended to increase. In brief, increasing urea N fertilization promoted the growth of forage oats and increased the biomass yield as well as the crude protein and cellulose content of FOS. Considering the negative effect of increased lignin content on nutrient digestibility and total VFA production, the suggested range of urea N fertilization is 156–363 kg N/ha for forage oats planted in Tibet to retain the nutritive value of FOS in the rumen.
A completely randomized experiment for planting highland barley in 36 field plots of the Lhasa Agricultural Experiment Station was applied to investigate the effect of urea nitrogen (N) fertilization levels of 0 (control), 156, 258, 363, 465 and 570 kg/ha on nutrient accumulation, in vitro rumen gas production and fermentation characteristics of highland barley straw (HBS). Each urea application was divided into three portions of 0.4, 0.3 and 0.3 and sequentially fertilized at seeding (growth stage (GS) 0), stem elongation (GS 32) and heading (GS 49), respectively. The maturity stage lasted 5–13 days longer in response to the urea N fertilization compared with the control. After removing grains, HBS biomass was harvested at maturity. The biomass yields of leaf, stem, straw and grain were increased quadratically with increasing urea N fertilization, and HBS and grain yields peaked at the estimated urea N fertilization levels of 385 and 428 kg/ha, respectively. The increase of urea N fertilization increased the accumulation of crude protein, cellulose and lignin, and decreased the content of ash and hemicellulose in HBS, resulting in a decrease of the energy content available to be metabolized. After incubating HBS for 72 h with rumen fluids from lactating cows, the urea N fertilization decreased in vitro dry matter disappearance and cumulative gas production, and slightly altered fermentation end-gas composition. Urea N fertilization decreased microbial volatile fatty acid production, but did not alter the ratio of lipogenic acetate and butyrate to glucogenic propionate. In a brief, the current urea N fertilization strategy promoted the growth of the highland barley and increased biomass yield, protein and cellulose accumulation of HBS. A urea N fertilization level ⩽385 kg/ha could be sufficient for growth of highland barley in Tibet without a consequent nutritive reduction in ruminal digestion.
Based on the Bayesian Inference (BI) method, the Mixture-Model approach is improved to combine all kinematic data, including the coordinative position(
), proper motion (
) and radial velocity(v), to separate the motion of the cluster from field stars, as well as to determine the intrinsic kinematic status and dynamical effects of the cluster, such as the mass segregation, anisotropy etc.. Meanwhile, the membership probability of individual stars are estimated as by product results. This method has been testified by simulation of toy models and also successfully used for well studied open clusters, such as M67 and NGC188. It is expected to largely help the studies of open clusters while combine the coming GAIA data.
The current sample of star clusters (SCs) is still incomplete beyond 1.8 kpc. The Pan-STARRS1 with its wide field of views and sensitive cameras provides us an opportunity to identify and characterize SCs as much as possible. By using a star counting algorithm, we obtained a total of 491 stellar density enhancements in a field of 20° × 20° toward the Galactic Anti-Center (GAC), of which 50 are known SCs. The remaining 441 candidates are verified with radii, interstellar reddening, distances, and ages with proper motions and multiple bands photometries. Our results push the completeness of SCs almost near the edge of GAC. With the revised SC sample, the separation between Sagittarius and Perseus arms are about 3.2 ± 0.2 kpc and the widths of the nearby spiral arms—Sagittarius, Orion, and Perseus—with are 1.4 ± 0.1, 1.6 ± 0.1, and 3.3 ± 0.2 kpc, respectively.
We compare the host galaxies of 902 supernovae, including Type Ia, II and Ibc, which are selected by cross-matching the Asiago Supernova Catalog with the SDSS DR7. We further selected 213 galaxies by requiring the light fraction of spectral observations > 15%, which could represent well the global properties of the galaxies. The diagrams related to Dn(4000), HδA, stellar masses, SFRs and specific SFRs for the SNe hosts show that almost all SNe II and most of SNe Ibc occur in SF galaxies. A significant fraction of SNe Ia occurs in AGNs and Absorp galaxies. These results are compared with those of the 689 comparison galaxies where the SDSS fiber captures < 15% of the total light. These comparison galaxies appear biased towards higher 12+log(O/H) (~0.1dex) at a given stellar mass, suggesting the aperture effect should be kept in mind when the properties of the hosts for different types of SNe are discussed.
We compiled a sample of 57 galaxies with spectroscopically confirmed redshifts and SPIRE detections in all three bands at z = 2.5-6.4, and compared their SPIRE colors with SED templates from local and high-z libraries. We find that local calibrations are inconsistent with high-z observations. For high-z libraries, the templates with an evolution from z = 0 to 3 can describe the average colors of the observations at high redshift well. Based on the templates, we defined color cuts to divide the SPIRE color-color diagram into different regions with different mean redshifts. We tested this method and two other color cut methods using a larger sample (783 galaxies) with photometric redshifts. We find that these color cuts can separate the sample into subsamples with different mean redshifts, but the dispersion of redshifts in each subsample is considerably large. Additional information is needed for better sampling.
Co-infections of cystic echinococcosis (CE) and HIV/AIDS is rare. We report four CE cases that were HIV positive. Three out of the four patients underwent a surgical operation to remove the hydatid cysts in their livers. The operation confirmed that in two of the cases their cysts had ruptured. These patients were given 3 months of albendazole after the operation. Follow-up showed they were remarkably improved in term of their health, although they were still HIV antibody positive 6 months after surgical treatment. Interestingly, the treatment remarkably increased their CD4+ cell population. We showed that surgery is suitable for treating hepatic cystic echinococcosis with HIV/AIDS co-infection.
This study characterized Neisseria meningitidis serogroup C strains in China in order to establish their genetic relatedness and describe the use of multilocus variable-number tandem-repeat (VNTR) analysis (MLVA) to provide useful epidemiological information. A total of 215 N. meningitidis serogroup C strains, obtained from 2003 to 2012 in China, were characterized by MLVA with different published schemes as well as multilocus sequence typing. (i) Based on the MLVA scheme with a combination of five highly variable loci, 203 genotypes were identified; this level of discrimination supports its use for resolving closely related isolates. (ii) Based on a combination of ten low variable loci, clear phylogenetic relationships were established within sequence type complexes. In addition, there was evidence of microevolution of VNTR loci over the decade as strain lineages spread from Anhui to other provinces, the more distant the provinces from Anhui, the higher the genetic variation.
The detection of single molecular binding events has been a recent trend in sensor research introducing various sensor designs where the active sensing elements are nanoscopic in size. Currently, diffusion-only-transport is often used and it becomes increasingly unlikely for an analyte molecule to “find” and interact with sensing structures where the active area is shrunk in size, trading an increased sensitivity with a long response time. This report introduces electrodynamic nanolens based analyte concentration concepts to transport airborne analytes to nanoscopic sensing points to improve the response time of existing gas sensor designs. In all cases we find that the collection rate is several orders of magnitudes higher than in the case where the collection is driven by diffusion.
Radiation-tolerant materials, sensors and electronics can enable lightweight space subsystems with reduced packaging requirements and increased operation lifetimes. Such technology can be used within extreme harsh environments related to space exploration, radiation medicine and power generation (combustion and nuclear). Gallium nitride (GaN), a ceramic semiconductor material, is a candidate material due to its stability within high-radiation, high-temperature and chemically corrosive environments. In addition, the wide bandgap of GaN (3.4 eV) can be leveraged for ultraviolet (UV) wavelength photodetection. In metal-semiconductor-metal (MSM) photodetector architectures using Schottky contacts, transparent electrodes (e.g., graphene) can increase sensitivity and improve overall device response. Here we present fabrication and characterization of GaN-based UV photodetectors using graphene electrodes irradiated up to 200 krad total ionizing dose (TID) then tested under UV light and dark conditions. For current-voltage measurements taken at 90, 120 and 200 krad TID, the current-voltage response does not vary significantly. From 90 to 120 krad TID, the responsivity shifts by 2% before dropping off at 200 krad TID. These initial findings suggest that graphene/GaN MSM UV photodetectors can provide robust operation within extreme harsh environments.
ZrO2/Ge is potential high-k dielectric candidate to replace silicon based devices. Controlling stress in zirconia film and stabilizing high dielectric constant phase is crucial for high-k application. A precise control of stress and phase selectivity in high-k thin films is demonstrated. Thin films of ZrO2 were grown by reactive sputter deposition. Wide range of growth stress in thin films from -0.3 to -2.8 GPa can be tuned by growth rate control. Adatom incorporation into grain boundary was the dominant source of observed stress. Phase selectivity in zirconia was achieved by tuning growth parameters.
Stable, electrically conductive, thin film materials are key components for high temperature sensors operating in harsh environments. In this work, nanocomposite Pt-Zr-B and Pt-Si thin film materials were grown to a nominal thickness of 200 nm on both r-cut sapphire (α-Al2O3) substrates using e-beam evaporation, and their structure, morphology, and chemical composition was characterized following thermal treatments in an air laboratory furnace up to 1300°C. In the Pt-Zr-B system, oxidation of a nanolaminate architecture consisting of ZrB2 and pure Pt layers leads to boron oxide evaporation and the formation of Pt grains decorated by tetragonal-ZrO2 nanocrystallites at high temperature. Electrical conductivity measurements with a 4-point probe show that this nanocomposite film structure can maintain a film conductivity > 1x106 S/m up to 1300°C, depending on the Pt/ZrB2 layer thickness ratio. In the Pt-Si system, film compositions were varied to yield either nanocrystalline Pt3Si, Pt2Si, or PtSi phases depending on the Pt-Si ratio, or an amorphous phase at high Si content. Above 1000°C in air, Pt-oxide and Si-oxide phases form and coexist with the Pt-Si phases, and some Pt-Si film conductivities remain as high as 1x106 S/m after annealing at 1000°C for 6 hours. It was found that a 100 nm thick amorphous alumina capping layer grown by atomic layer deposition (ALD) aids in limiting film oxidation, but film stress leads to regions of delamination.
This work investigates the effects of concentration of organothiol molecules and temperature used during self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) formation on quality of the organothiol SAMs coating layer obtained in terms of wettability, corrosion inhibition efficiency and carbon to copper ratio. The organothiol SAMs were coated on copper substrates prepared by electro-polishing followed by oxygen plasma treatment for 15 s. Three types of organothiol SAMs including 1-octanethiol (OTT), 2-ethylhexanethiol (2-EHT) and 2-phenylethanethiol (2-PET) were investigated. Concentration of organothiol molecules ranging from 0.005 to 0.02 M in isopropanol and forming temperature ranging from -15 to 50°C were studied. It was found that all organothiol SAMs of 0.01 M provided the SAMs coating layer with the highest quality. The SAMs formed at 40°C with OTT and 2-EHT, and at 0°C with 2-PET were the most favorable condition with the highest water contact angle of 124.79o, 130.66o and 120.58o at corrosion inhibition efficiencies of 96.24%, 99.37% and 98.90%, respectively.