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Sn–Sb alloy is an ideal candidate for lead-free solder; however, its performance has been inferior to that of Sn–Pb alloy. Here, the authors used ab initio molecular dynamics simulation to investigate the interatomic interaction in Sn–Sb-based lead-free solders. By calculating the electron density distribution, bond population, and partial density of states, the authors found that the Sn–Sb bonds are a mixture of nonlocalized metal and localized covalent bonds. The covalent bond between Sn and Sb is easy to break at higher temperatures, so Sn–Sb (6.4 wt%) had better fluidity than other studied Sn–Sb alloys. Furthermore, adding Cu or Ag into Sn–Sb alloys can decrease the strength of covalent bonds and stabilize the metal bonds, which improves the metallicity and wettability of the Sn–Sb–Cu and Sn–Sb–Cu–Ag systems when the temperature increases. These results are all in good agreement with experimental findings and have significant value for the development of new solder alloys.
Toxigenic Clostridium difficile (C. difficile) carriers represent an important source in the transmission of C. difficile infection (CDI) during hospitalisation, but its prevalence and mode in patients with hepatic cirrhosis are not well established. We investigated longitudinal changes in carriage rates and strain types of toxigenic C. difficile from admission to discharge among hepatic cirrhosis patients. Toxigenic C. difficile was detected in 104 (19.8%) of 526 hepatic cirrhosis patients on admission, and the carriage status changed in a portion of patients during hospitalisation. Approximately 56% (58/104) of patients lost the colonisation during their hospital stay. Among the remaining 48 patients who remained positive for toxigenic C. difficile, the numbers of patients who were positive at one, two, three and four isolations were 10 (55.6%), three (16.7%), two (11.1%) and three (16.7%), respectively. Twenty-eight patients retained a particular monophyletic strain at multiple isolations. The genotype most frequently identified was the same as that frequently identified in symptomatic CDI patients. A total of 25% (26/104) of patients were diagnosed with CDI during their hospital stay. Conclusions: Colonisation with toxigenic C. difficile strains occurs frequently in cirrhosis patients and is a risk factor for CDI.
A series of optically transparent and colorless semi-fluorinated poly(ether imide)s (PEIs) (III) were prepared from non-fluorinated 1,4-bis(3,4-dicarboxyphenoxy)benzene dianhydride (HQDPA) with various trifluoromethyl-substituted diamines. The III series showed more colorless and higher optical transparency with a cutoff absorption wavelength (λ0) below 370 nm than the IV series based on the corresponding non-fluorinated analogues and V series derived from CF3-free pyromellitic dianhydride (PMDA). Compared with the fluorinated VI series based on fluorinated 4,4′-hexafluoroisopropylidenediphthalic anhydride (6FDA), the semi-fluorinated III series not only exhibited much better optical transparency, but also had better mechanical and thermal properties. The III series had a tensile strength of 79.8–109.5 MPa, modulus of elasticity of 3.0–7.7 GPa and elongation at break of 14.2–26.7%, together with glass-transition temperatures (Tg) ranging from 214.3 to 265.1 °C and temperatures of 5% weight loss (T5%) beyond 530 °C. Meanwhile, the novel semi-fluorinated PEI IIIb was optically transparent and colorless with a λ0 of 367 nm coupled with dielectric constants below 3.2 and contact angles against water over 112°. In particular, the optically transparent IIIa exhibited the best tensile strength of 109.5 MPa when compared with already reported counterparts.
Energy chirp compensation of the electron bunch (e-bunch) in a laser wakefield accelerator, which is caused by the phase space rotation in the gradient wakefield, has been applied in many schemes for low energy spread e-bunch generation. We report the experimental observation of energy chirp compensation of the e-bunch in a nonlinear laser wakefield accelerator with a negligible beam loading effect. By adjusting the acceleration length using a wedge-roof block, the chirp compensation of the accelerated e-bunch was observed via an electron spectrometer. Apart from this, some significant parameters for the compensation process, such as the longitudinal dispersion and wakefield slope at the bunch position, were also estimated. A detailed comparison between experiment and simulation shows good agreement of the wakefield and bunch parameters. These results give a clear demonstration of the longitudinal characteristics of the wakefield in a plasma and the bunch dynamics, which are important for better control of a compact laser wakefield accelerator.
PMs with two rotations and one translation (2R1T) have been used as skeletons in various advanced manufacturing equipment where high accuracy and stiffness are basic requirements. Considering the advantages of redundant actuation and overconstrained structure, such as reduced singularities and improved stiffness, a new 2R1T overconstrained PM with actuation redundancy, called Hex4, is proposed in this paper. This is a 2-PUR/2-RPU PM (where P denotes an actuated prismatic joint, U a universal joint, and R a revolute joint) that is actuated by four prismatic joints. Compared with some existing 2R1T overconstrained PMs with actuation redundancy, the main advantage of the proposed PM is that the heavy motors of two limbs are mounted on the base to reduce the movable mass and improve dynamic response. First, mobility analysis, inverse kinematics, and velocity analysis are presented. Then, the local transmission index and good transmission workspace are used to evaluate the motion/force transmissibility of the Hex4 PM. The variation tendencies of the two indices with different link parameters are investigated. The singularity is then discussed by considering the motion/force transmissibility. Finally, link parameters are optimized to obtain an improved good transmission workspace. It is shown that the proposed PM has a good potential for high precision applications.
Given the global water challenges, solar-driven steam generation has become a renewed topic recently as an energy-efficient way for clean water production. Here, a hybrid plasmonic structure consisting of a top layer of TiN nanoparticles (NPs) and a bottom layer of mesoporous anodized alumina membrane (AAM) was rationally designed and fabricated. The top TiN NPs with broadband light absorption acted as a plasmonic heating layer, which converted the absorbed light to heat efficiently for interfacial water heating. The AAM acted as the mechanical support layer, guaranteeing the heat isolation and continuous water replenishment. With optimized thickness of the TiN top layer, a solar steam generation efficiency of 87.7% was achieved in this study. This efficiency is comparable or even higher than prior studies. The current work proves the capability of the TiN NPs as an alternative photothermal material.
High power superfluorescent fiber sources (SFSs), which could find wide applications in many fields such as middle infrared laser generation, Raman fiber laser pumping and spectral beam combination, have experienced a flourishing time in recent years for its unique properties, such as short coherence length and high temporal stability. The challenge for performance scalability of powerful SFS mainly lies on the physical issues including parasitic laser oscillation and modal instability (MI). In this contribution, by employing in-band pumping avenue and high-order transverse-mode management, we explore a high power SFS with record power, near-diffraction-limited beam quality and spectral manipulation flexibility. An ultimate output power of 3.14 kW can be obtained with high temporal stability and a beam quality of
for the amplified light. Furthermore, the dynamics of spectral evolutions, including red-shifting of central wavelength and unsymmetrical broadening in spectral wings, of the main amplifier with different seed linewidths are investigated contrastively. Benefiting from the unique high pump brightness and high MI threshold of in-band pumping scheme, the demonstrated system also manifests promising performance scaling potential.
In this paper the notion of sub-exponential measure complexity for an invariant Borel probability measure of a topological dynamical system is introduced. Then a minimal distal skew product map on the torus with sub-exponential measure complexity is constructed.
The Misell algorithm is one of the most widely used phase retrieval holography methods for large reflector antennas to measure surface deformation. However, it usually locks in a local minimum because it heads downhill from an initial estimation without any consideration whether it heads for a global minimum or not. The core problem of the Misell algorithm is to find an initial estimation near the global minimum to avoid local stagnation. To cope with the problem, we construct a hybrid Misell algorithm, named modified very fast simulated annealing (MVFSA)-Misell algorithm, to search for the global minimum with a high efficiency. The algorithm is based on the combination of the MVFSA algorithm and Misell algorithm. Firstly, the MVFSA is utilized to obtain a rough position near the global minimum in limited steps. Then, the Misell algorithm starts from the rough position to converge to the global minimum with high speed and accuracy. The convergence characteristic of the proposed algorithm was discussed in detail through digital simulation. Simulation results show that the algorithm can reach global minimum in a very short time. Unlike the traditional Misell algorithm, the hybrid algorithm is not influenced by initial phase estimation.
In this paper, we experimentally investigated the extreme frequency shift in high-power Raman fiber laser (RFL). The RFL was developed by using a pair of fiber Bragg gratings with fixed and matched central wavelength (1120 nm) combined with a piece of 31-m-long polarization maintaining (PM) passive fiber adopted as Raman gain medium. The pump source was a homemade high-power, linearly polarized (LP) wavelength-tunable master oscillator power amplifier (MOPA) source with
tunable working range (1055–1080 nm). High-power and high-efficiency RFL with extreme frequency shift between the pump and Stokes light was explored. It is found that frequency shift located within 10.6 THz and 15.2 THz can ensure efficient Raman lasing, where the conversion efficiency is more than 95% of the maximal value, 71.3%. In addition, a maximum output power of 147.1 W was obtained with an optical efficiency of 71.3%, which is the highest power ever reported in LP RFLs to the best of our knowledge.
For straw incorporation, three crucial factors affect the soil microbial community and various enzyme activities: straw length, amount and burial depth. To analyse the individual and interactive effects of these three factors on the soil microbial community and various enzyme activities, 23 treatments with five levels of the three variables (straw length, amount and burial depth) were applied in a quadratic orthogonal rotation combination design. A comprehensive indicator was constructed that could represent soil microbial functional diversity and enzyme activity by determining the weights of measured indicators and using Technique for Order of Preference by Similarity to Ideal Solution (TOPSIS). The results indicated that the soil microbiological indicators have a higher criteria weight than soil enzyme activity indicators. The final weight orders of indicators were as follows: Shannon–Weaver > invertase > Shannon evenness > urease > catalase > McIntosh index > Simpson diversity > phosphatase. The soil comprehensive values constructed by the TOPSIS method are reliable. The optimal combination for the improvement of soil microbial functional diversity and enzyme activity was a straw length of 13–24 cm, burial depth of 10–17 cm and straw amount of 370–650 g/m2.
The pathophysiology of cognitive impairment in patients with the major depressive disorder (MDD) may involve neuroinflammation mediated by cytokines.
The aim of this study was to examine the serum interleukin-6 (IL-6) levels, sustained attention, and their association in patients with MDD.
Thirty patients with MDD and 30 healthy controls were enrolled in this case-control study. Sustained attention was measured using the Rapid Visual Information Processing (RVP) task in the Cambridge Neuropsychological Tests Automated Battery. The serum IL-6 levels of all subjects were assessed by sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays.
There were significant differences in the log10RVP total hits, log10RVP total misses, and log10RVP mean latency between patients with MDD and healthy controls (F = 6.04, p = 0.017; F = 19.77, p < 0.0001; F = 14.42, p < 0.0001, respectively). The serum levels of Log10IL-6 were significantly higher in patients with MDD than in healthy controls (F = 192.27, p < 0.0001). The log10IL-6 levels were also positively correlated with the log10RVP mean latency in patients with MDD (r = 0.45, p = 0.013). A further stepwise multivariate regression analysis indicated that the log10IL-6 levels were significantly associated with the log10RVP mean latency in patients with MDD (β = 0.31, t = 2.41, p = 0.025).
Our data suggested that increased IL-6 levels were associated with the psychopathology of MDD, and that abnormal IL-6 levels were implicated in the impairment of sustained attention in patients with MDD.
The purpose of this study was to investigate the joint associations of dietary pattern and television viewing with risk factors of CVD among urban adults in China. A community-based cross-sectional study was conducted among urban adults in Nanjing, China. Five dietary patterns were identified based on a FFQ. Television time was obtained from a standard questionnaire and further classified into two categories (≤7, >7 h/week). Multiple logistic regression was used to calculate the OR and 95 % CI for the separate and joint associations of dietary patterns and television viewing with CVD risk factors. Compared with other dietary patterns, participants who followed the healthy traditional pattern had a lower likelihood of abdominal obesity (AO) (OR 0·52; 95 % CI 0·41, 0·67). Participants watching television no more than 7 h/week presented a 19 and 21 % lower likelihood for hypertension (HT) and elevated total cholesterol (ETC) than those with television time >7 h/week. Individuals who had less television time and a healthy dietary pattern had a lower OR for the presence of AO (OR 0·48; 95 % CI 0·36, 0·65), HT (OR 0·71; 95 % CI 0·66, 0·77), ETC (OR 0·72; 95 % CI 0·57, 0·91) and elevated TAG (OR 0·76; 95 % CI 0·61, 0·95), compared with those who followed other dietary patterns and television time >7 h/week. In conclusion, both healthy traditional pattern and less television time are jointly associated with reduced levels of CVD risk factors. It has important public health implications regarding the precision prevention of CVD at population level.
More than 200 molecular clouds were newly found distributed beyond the Outer arm in the extreme outer Galaxy (EOG) region by MWISP. Those MCs roughly following the HI′s distribution well delineate the outermost spiral structure (the Outer Scutum-Centaurus arm) and warp of our Galaxy. Besides, those MCs show different σv-Radius relation and exhibit higher value of αvir than MCs in the inner Galaxy.
An apparatus design is described. It is for detecting VHE gamma ray point sources by means of the atmospheric Cerenkov technique. Obviously, the improvement of flux sensitivity and discrimination between gamma ray and isotropic proton showers is still a key problem. Of course, it is necessary to set up more observatories and to track an object continuously with several facilities. With this in mind, we decided to develop an experiment for observing VHE gamma ray sources in China. As a first step, we will set up an apparatus which consists of three 1.5 m diameter searchlight morrors at Xinglong station of Beijing Observatory, Xinglong county, Hebei province (40°. 4N, 117°.5E, altitude 940 m). The observation will start in 1988. Then, the second apparatus will be set up at Delingha station of Purple Mountain Observatory, Delingha county, Qinghai porvince (37°.22N, altitude 3204 m). Both the sites are far from air and light pollution, and have suitable meteological condition for Cerenkov light detection as well as quite convenient facilities for transportation. Some probable technical improvements are also discussed in this paper.
The computation efficiency of high dimensional (3D and 4D) B-spline interpolation, constructed by classical tensor product method, is improved greatly by precomputing the B-spline function. This is due to the character of NLT code, i.e. only the linearised characteristics are needed so that the unperturbed orbit as well as values of the B-spline function at interpolation points can be precomputed at the beginning of the simulation. By integrating this fixed point interpolation algorithm into NLT code, the high dimensional gyro-kinetic Vlasov equation can be solved directly without operator splitting method which is applied in conventional semi-Lagrangian codes. In the Rosenbluth-Hinton test, NLT runs a few times faster for Vlasov solver part and converges at about one order larger time step than conventional splitting code.
Cerebral small vessel disease (SVD) is the common cause of cognitive decline in the old population. MRI can be used to clarify its mechanisms. However, the surrogate markers of MRI for early cognitive impairment in SVD remain uncertain to date. We investigated the cognitive impacts of cerebral microbleeds (CMBs), diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), and brain volumetric measurements in a cohort of post-stroke non-dementia SVD patients.
Fifty five non-dementia SVD patients were consecutively recruited and categorized into two groups as no cognitive impairment (NCI) (n = 23) or vascular mild cognitive impairment (VaMCI) (n = 32). Detailed neuropsychological assessment and multimodal MRI were completed.
The two groups differed significantly on Z scores of all cognitive domains (all p < 0.01) except for the language. There were more patients with hypertension (p = 0.038) or depression (p = 0.019) in the VaMCI than those in the NCI group. Multiple regression analysis of cognition showed periventricular mean diffusivity (MD) (β = −0.457, p < 0.01) and deep CMBs numbers (β = −0.352, p < 0.01) as the predictors of attention/executive function, which explained 45.2% of the total variance. Periventricular MD was the independent predictor for either memory (β = −0.314, p < 0.05) or visuo-spatial function (β = −0.375, p < 0.01); however, only small proportion of variance could be accounted for (9.8% and 12.4%, respectively). Language was not found to be correlated with any of the MRI parameters. No correlation was found between brain atrophic indices and any of the cognitive measures.
Arteriosclerotic CMBs and periventricular white matter disintegrity seem to be independent MRI surrogated markers in the early stage of cognitive impairment in SVD.
MnOx–CeO2/t-ZrO2 catalyst was prepared by impregnation of nanotetragonal zirconia. The NO conversion of 5 wt% MnOx–CeO2/t-ZrO2 catalyst was 68.1% at 100 °C while that of 30 wt% MnOx–CeO2/t-ZrO2 catalyst was 97.4%. The x-ray diffraction, Brunner–Emmet–Teller measurements (BET), and H2-TPR showed surface properties of the prepared catalysts were good for selective catalytic reduction reactions. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy analysis indicated that Mn4+ and Ce4+ oxidation states were predominant on the surface of the catalyst and so was lattice oxygen which was conducive to Lewis acid sites. NH3-TPD test results demonstrated that Lewis acid sites are predominant on the surface of catalyst. The presence of SO2 reduced the catalyst activity. The realized conversion dramatically decreased to 47% from nearly 100% after 8 h. Characterization of fresh and spent catalysts indicated the deterioration of active component and deposition of NH4HSO4 or (NH4)2SO4 contribute to SO2 poisoning.
In the present study, we evaluated the reproducibility and validity of dietary patterns among Chinese adult populations. A random subsample of 203 participants (aged 31–80 years) from a community-based nutrition and health survey was enrolled. An eighty-seven-item FFQ was administered twice (FFQ1 and FFQ2) 1 year apart; four 3 consecutive day, 24-h dietary recalls (24-HDR, as a reference method) were performed between the administrations of the two FFQ every 3 months. Dietary patterns from three separate dietary sources were derived using factor analysis based on twenty-eight predefined food groups. Comparisons between dietary pattern scores were made by using Pearson’s or intraclass correlation coefficients (ICC), cross-classification analysis, weighted κ statistic and Bland–Altman plots; the four major dietary patterns identified from FFQ1, FFQ2 and 24-HDR were similar. Regarding reproducibility, ICC for z-scores between FFQ1 and FFQ2 were all >0·6 for dietary patterns. The ‘animal and plant protein’ pattern had the highest ICC of 0·870. For validity, the adjusted Pearson’s correlation coefficients for dietary pattern z-scores between two FFQ and the mean of four 3 consecutive day 24-HDR ranged from 0·387 for the ‘Chinese traditional’ pattern to 0·838 for the ‘animal and plant protein’ pattern. More than 75 % of the participants were classified into the same or adjacent quartile, and <5 % were misclassified into opposite quartiles. The weighted κ ranged from 0·259 to 0·680. Bland–Altman plots indicated that no significant deviation was found between two dietary assessment methods. Our findings indicate a good reasonable reproducibility and a reasonable validity of dietary patterns derived by factor analysis in China.