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Flanged ventricular catheters are now used infrequently. Many patients with longstanding hydrocephalus still harbor these catheters, either as their current ventricular catheter, or as a retained catheter from a prior implant. The removal of flanged ventricular catheters is sometimes necessary, and may be challenging due to intraventricular adhesions. We describe the use of an endoscopic technique for the successful retrieval of flanged ventricular catheters in two patients. The technique described in this report may be helpful for patients that have flanged ventricular catheters that must be removed.
Dispersed facies basal ice – massive (i.e. structureless) ice with dispersed debris aggregates – is present at the margins of many glaciers and, as a product of internal glacial processes, has the potential to provide important information about the mechanisms of glacier flow and the nature of the subglacial environment. The origin of dispersed facies is poorly understood, with several hypotheses having been advanced for its formation, and there is disagreement as to whether it is largely a sedimentary or a tectonic feature. We test these established hypotheses at the temperate glacier Svínafellsjökull, Iceland, and find that none fully account for dispersed facies characteristics at this location. Instead, dispersed facies physical, sedimentological and stable-isotope (δ18O, δD) characteristics favour a predominantly tectonic origin that we suggest comprises the regelation and strain-induced metamorphism of debris-rich basal ice that has been entrained into an englacial position by tectonic processes operating at the base of an icefall. Further thickening of the resultant dispersed facies may also occur tectonically as a result of ice flow against the reverse bed slope of a terminal overdeepening. Lack of efficient subglacial drainage in the region of the overdeepening may limit basal melting and thus favour basal ice preservation, including the preservation of dispersed facies. Despite the relatively low sediment content of dispersed facies ( ∼1.6% by volume), its thickness (up to 25 m) and ubiquity at Svínafellsjökull results in a significant contribution to annual sediment discharge (1635–3270 m3 a−1) that is ∼6.5 times that contributed by debris-rich stratified facies basal ice.
Since its invention in the late 1940s, radiocarbon (14C) dating has become an important tool for absolute dating. A prerequisite for the acceptance of this method is consistency between, and compatibility of, 14C dates from different laboratories. To meet these requirements, international laboratory intercomparison studies with different sample materials are frequently performed (e.g. TIRI, FIRI, VIRI and, most recently, SIRI).Intercomparison is especially relevant and difficult for samples close to the dating limit of ~50 kBP, not least for bone samples. A 14C intercomparison study between the Leibniz-Laboratory in Kiel (Germany), the Center for Isotope Research (CIO) in Groningen (the Netherlands), and the Oxford Radiocarbon Accelerator Unit (ORAU, United Kingdom) was performed on three Pleistocene (MIS3) mammal bone samples from the Brick Quarry site Coenen (BQC) in Germany. The comparison of individually prepared and measured bone collagen 14C activities, results from shared collagen measurements, and respective background signatures and correction points to the latter as the main factor responsible for observed differences in final given radiocarbon estimates.
A recurring theme of the Late Bronze Age is the apparent association between deliberate deposition of material and wet places. Recently, a human skull has been discovered within the basal sediments of a relict mire at Poulton-le-Fylde, Lancashire, dating to the later Bronze Age (c. 1250–840 cal BC). The find, which belonged to a c. 25–35 year old male, was located within a layer of silty wood peat elm deep, representing the ancient root system of a hazel copse and containing many hazelnuts and some charcoal. Palaeopathological investigation established the likelihood that the skull had decomposed before deposition and there are strong parallels between the find and its context and other prehistoric skulls recorded from British wetlands. The connection of the human remains with considerable amounts of hazel wood may also be of significance when viewed within the wider context of similar associations recorded from European bog-bodies. During the course of excavation and survey of the site worked wood fragments were recovered indicating both human and animal (beaver) activity, dating to the later Bronze Age and Early Iron Age respectively. The stratigraphic sequence indicated that organic sedimentation resulted from the rapid flooding of a formerly relatively dry landscape, perhaps as a result of the effects of beaver damming – a possibility which may hold wider implications for the archaeological interpretation of prehistoric pollen data.
Nanostructuring has been the foremost approach to the manufacture of high-performance thermoelectric materials for nearly a decade. This study explores a novel nanostructuring technique, attrition-enhanced nanocomposite synthesis, in maximum indium-filled, iron-substituted cobalt antimonide skutterudites. In0.3Fe0.8Co3.2Sb12 was synthesized and subjected to varying degrees of mechanical attrition (via ball milling). These samples exhibited increased indium precipitation coincident with the duration of mechanical attrition. Indium readily diffused through the skutterudite crystal structure and rapidly precipitated forming 20-50 nm-sized indium-rich inclusions during sintering.
It might at first appear an irony: the peak in anxieties about the end of travel coincides, almost exactly, with what has been described as the ‘renaissance of the travel book’ (see for example, Graves 2003). But this convergence in the late 1970s and 1980s is more likely an expression of a broad literary and cultural engagement with questions of travel in a world increasingly on the move, increasingly interconnected. The publication of Bruce Chatwin's In Patagonia in 1977, alongside that of Patrick Leigh Fermor's A Time of Gifts, is often given as the literary historical moment in which travel writing was most conspicuously asserted and formally renewed (Hulme and Youngs 2002; Graves 2003; Borm 2007). The work of writers like Paul Theroux, Colin Thubron, Jonathan Raban, Robyn Davidson and Peter Matthiessen further demonstrated the vitality of the form. This reinvigoration of the travel book in Anglophone terms was prominently heralded in a 1984 edition of the influential literary magazine of new writing, Granta, which was dedicated to ‘Travel Writing’, and advertised as follows:
Travel writing is undergoing a revival: not since the 1920s and '30s has it been so popular or important. What accounts for its sudden appeal? A need for escape? Nostalgia for an experience that means not tourism but adventure? Or does travel writing – being part reportage, part fiction, and part meditation – express concerns that we rarely see addressed in other forms of writing?
It is in classifications that life flashes through so tantalisingly, in the registers that attempt to catalogue it and in so doing expose its irreducible residuum of mystery and enchantment. In the same way the project […], set out like Wittgenstein's Tractatus (I.I, I.2, 2.II, 2.I2 etc.), affords us in the truly minimal gaps between one number and the next a glimpse of the unlimited vicissitudes of travelling.
Claudio Magris, Danube (2001: 17)
This study began with a consideration of dimensions of the literary and cultural horizon of expectations that are often brought to bear when encountering travels in contemporary literature; that is, what we may bring with us upon ‘arrival’. Before closing, it may be appropriate to offer a consideration of what we take with us when we ‘leave’. The question is not so much, as is often the case in studies in travel writing, ‘where next?’ This study has attempted to question a model of reading travels as exclusively or primarily documents of geographical discovery, rendered precarious by the increasingly full and competing versions of the world. My area of concern here has more to do with the question of ‘how next?’ The texts that have been gathered together in ‘an attempt to catalogue’ the form of traveller's tale of wonder in contemporary literature has been conducted from the first with the hope that it would expose the ‘irreducible residuum of mystery and enchantment’ that the texts considered evoke.
Voyages and travels are among the oldest and most culturally widespread forms in literary history. Among the earliest extant texts is a traveller's tale of an island of marvels, ‘The Shipwrecked Sailor’ (Tappan 1914: 41–6), written in Egypt's Twelfth Dynasty (that is, around 2200 bce). The journey is the common denominator for accounts as varied as The Histories of the ancient Greek Herodotus, Egeria's pilgrimage to the Holy Land in the fourth century ce, the writings of household-name scientists such as Charles Darwin with Voyage of the Beagle and works by canonical literary authors such as Henry James, with Italian Hours. And from The Epic of Gilgamesh, the Sumerian quest narrative dated at around 2000 bce, to the ancient epics, to the world's religious texts, to the emergence of the Western novel, the journey is a perennial motif. Homer's Odyssey, Exile and Exodus, the Norse sagas, the early Germanic Widsith, the Anglo-Saxon poem Beowulf, Thomas More's Utopia, Cervantes' Don Quixote, Defoe's Robinson Crusoe – all are cases in point. Travel, real or imagined, prompts tales, oral or written. In ‘Der Erzähler’ (‘The Storyteller’), Walter Benjamin cites a German proverb: ‘“If one goes on a journey, one has something to tell”’ (Benjamin 1977: 386; my translation). And conversely, tales, oral or written, imply a journey, literal or figurative. That German saying could well be supplemented: ‘If one has something to tell, one has travelled.’ Readers, too, may be ‘transported’.