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A central part of the design process is collaboration, harnessing specialist expertise often in meetings. We understand relatively little about how meetings serve teams of designers and their work and this study uses soft systems methodology to attempt to create structures that describe and explain meetings. The results suggest extension of the boundary of interest and suggest a conceptual framework which reveals some under-addressed stages and activities which may help designers improve their meetings.
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.
Models of products and design processes are key to interacting with engineering designs and managing the processes by which they are developed. In practice, companies maintain networks of many interrelated models which need to be synthesised in the minds of their users when considering issues that cut across them. This article considers how information from product and design process models can be integrated with a view to help manage these complex interrelationships. A framework highlighting key issues surrounding model integration is introduced and terminology for describing these issues is developed. To illustrate the framework and terminology, selected modelling approaches that integrate product and process information are discussed and organised according to their levels and forms of integration. Opportunities for further work to advance integrated modelling in engineering design research and practice are discussed.
A new non-parametric method based on Gaussian Processes (GP) was proposed recently to measure the Hubble constant H0. The freedom in this approach comes in the chosen covariance function, which determines how smooth the process is and how nearby points are correlated. We perform coverage tests with a thousand mock samples within the ΛCDM model in order to determine what covariance function provides the least biased results. The function Matérn(5/2) is the best with sligthly higher errors than other covariance functions, although much more stable when compared to standard parametric analyses.
A consensus of expert opinion was used to provide both face and consensual validity to a list of potential indicators of sheep welfare. This approach was used as a first step in the identification of valid welfare indicators for sheep. The consensus methodology of the National Institute of Health, using pre-meeting consultation and focus group discussions, was used to ascertain the consensus opinion of a panel of sheep welfare experts. The Farm Animal Welfare Council's five freedoms were used as a framework to organise a list of current on-farm welfare issues for sheep. The five freedoms were also the welfare criterion used to identify potential on-farm welfare indicators for sheep. As a result, experts identified 193 welfare issues for sheep and lambs managed on farms across England and Wales. Subsequently, a combination of animal- (n = 26), resource- (n = 13) and management- (n = 22) based indicators was suggested for (i) adult rams, (ii) adult ewes (male and female sheep, over 1 year old), (iii) growing lambs (male and female sheep, over 6 weeks to 1 year old) and (iv) young lambs (male and female lambs, 6 weeks old and under). The results from this study could therefore be used to inform the further development of valid methods of assessing the on-farm welfare of sheep.
From 1996 to 2004, the incidence of Salmonella Javiana infections increased in FoodNet, the U.S. national active foodborne disease surveillance programme. Contact with amphibians and consumption of tomatoes have been associated with outbreaks of S. Javiana infection. To generate and test hypotheses about risk factors associated with sporadic S. Javiana infections, we interviewed patients with laboratory-confirmed S. Javiana infection identified in Georgia and Tennessee during August–October 2004. We collected data on food and water consumption, animal contact, and environmental exposure from cases. Responses were compared with population-based survey exposure data. Seventy-two of 117 identified S. Javiana case-patients were interviewed. Consumption of well water [adjusted odds ratio (aOR) 4·3, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1·6–11·2] and reptile or amphibian contact (aOR 2·6, 95% CI 0·9–7·1) were associated with infection. Consumption of tomatoes (aOR 0·5, 95% CI 0·3–0·9) and poultry (aOR 0·5, 95% CI 0·2–1·0) were protective. Our study suggests that environmental factors are associated with S. Javiana infections in Georgia and Tennessee.
Whether Neanderthals were capable of behaviours commonly held to be the exclusive preserve of modern humans — such as abstract thought, language, forward planning, art, reverence of the dead, complex technology, etc. — has remained a fundamental question in human evolutionary studies since their discovery more than a hundred years ago. A lack of quantitative data on Neanderthal symbolism and complex behaviour is a key obstacle to the resolution of this question, with temporal analyses usually confined to single regions or short time periods. Here we present an approach to the issue of symbolism and complex behaviours among Neanderthals that examines the frequency of key proxies for symbolic and complex behaviours through time, including burials, modified raw materials, use of pigments, use of composite technology and body modification. Our analysis demonstrates that the number and diversity of complex Neanderthal behaviours increases between 160,000 and 40,000 years ago. Whether this pattern derives from preservation factors, the evolution of cognitive and behavioural complexity, cumulative learning, or population size is discussed. We take the view that it is not the apparent sophistication of a single specific item, nor the presence or absence of particular types in the archaeological record that is important. Instead, we believe that it is the overall abundance of artefacts and features indicative of complex behaviours within the Neanderthal archaeological record as a whole that should provide the mark of Neanderthal capabilities and cultural evolutionary potential.
The SWEEPS (Sagittarius Window Eclipsing Extrasolar Planet Search) program was aimed at detecting planets around stars in the Galactic bulge, not only to determine their physical properties, but also to determine whether the properties of planets found in the solar neighborhood, such as their frequency and the metallicity dependence, also hold for the planets in the Galactic bulge. We used the Hubble Space Telescope to monitor 180,000 F, G, K, and M dwarfs in the Galactic bulge continuously for 7 days in order to look for transiting planets. We discovered 16 candidate transiting extrasolar planets with periods of 0.6 to 4.2 days, including a possible new class of ultra-short period planets (USPPs) with P < 1 day. The facts that (i) the coverage in the monitoring program is continuous, (ii) most of the stars are at a known distance (in the Galctic bulge), (iii) monitoring was carried out in 2 passbands, and (iv) the images have high spatial resolution, were crucial in minimizing and estimating the false positive rates. We estimate that at least 45% of the candidates are genuine planets. Radial velocity observations of the two brightest host stars further support the planetary nature of the transiting companions. These results suggest that the planet frequency in the Galactic bulge is similar to that in the solar neighborhood. They also suggest that higher metallicity favors planet formation even in the Galactic bulge. The USPPs occur only around low-mass stars which may suggest that close-in planets around higher-mass stars are irradiately evaporated, or that planets are able to migrate to and survive in close-in orbits only around such old and low-mass stars.
The WASP consortium is conducting an ultra-wide field survey of stars between 8–15 mag from both hemispheres. Our primary science goal is to detect extra-solar ‘hot-Jupiter’-type planets that eclipse (or transit) bright host stars and for which further detailed investigation will be possible. We summarize the design of the SuperWASP instruments and describe the first results from our northern station SW-N, sited in La Palma, Canary Islands. Our second station, which began operations this year, is located at the South African Astronomical Observatory. Between April and September, 2004, SW-N continuously observed ~6.7 million stars. The consortium's custom-written, fully automated data reduction pipeline has been used to process these data, and the information is now stored in the project archive, held by the Leicester database and archive service (LEDAS). We have applied a sophisticated, automated algorithm to identify the low-amplitude (~0.01 mag), brief (~few hours) signatures of transiting exoplanets. In addition, we have assessed each candidate in the light of all available catalogue information in order to reject data artefacts and astrophysical false positive detections. The highest priority candidates are currently being subjected to further observations in order to select the true planets. Once the exoplanets are confirmed, a host of exciting opportunities are open to us. In this paper, we describe two techniques that exploit the transits in order to detect other objects within the same system. The first involves determining precise epochs for a sequence of transit events in order to detect the small timing variations caused by the gravitational pull of other planets in the same system. The second method employs ultra-high precision photometry of the transits to detect the deviations caused by the presence of exoplanetary moons. Both of these techniques are capable of detecting objects the size of terrestrial planets.
The risks posed by a range of acoustic scientific instruments were assessed by the construction of matrices of scale and likelihood. We recognized six levels of impact ranging from none or short term, minimal behavioural response (Level 1) to multiple injuries and fatalities and/or compromised populations (Level 6) and six levels of likelihood ranging from “Expected in almost all instances” (Level 1) to “cannot see how it could happen” (Level 6). Typical scientific instruments ranging from acoustic releases to large air gun arrays were assessed. To provide a perspective for the risks of scientific operations, other activities were also ranked. These included large chemical explosions, submarine detection sonars implicated in some mass strandings of cetaceans and normal Antarctic shipping activities. The conclusion reached was that most scientific instruments pose a similar or lower risk than normal shipping operations. High source-level equipment poses some risk to individual animals' hearing and so should be mitigated. Likewise, survey planning should be designed to avoid trapping animals in narrow, constricted sea ways. Long term, cumulative impacts are still difficult to detect in areas with greater anthropogenic noise than the Antarctic but we concluded that any possible long term impacts should be mitigated by maintaining the low levels of activity using high source-level equipment through data sharing and survey planning.
A significant number of X-ray binaries are now known to exhibit long-term periodicities on timescales of ~10 - 100 days. Several physical mechanisms have been proposed that give rise to such periodicities, one of which is radiation-driven warping and precession of the accretion disk. Recent theoretical work predicts the stability to disk warping as a, function of the mass ratio, binary radius, viscosity and accretion efficiency. We investigate the stability of the superorbital periodicities in the neutron star X-ray binaries Cyg X-2, LMC X-4, SMC X-l and Her X-l, and thereby confront stability predictions with observation. We find that the period and nature of the superorbital variations in these sources is consistent with the predictions of warping theory.
The orthodox rules on validity of marriage at common law are that formal validity of marriage is governed by the lex loci celebrationis and essential validity of marriage (or capacity to marry) is governed by the personal law, ie the law of domicile. Neither the lex loci celebrationis nor the lex fori ought to have any interest in such questions of essential validity.
According to such orthodoxy there are two rules of English law that are suspect and in need of reconsideration. First, there is (arguably) the rule that the parties to a marriage do not need to have capacity to marry by the lex loci celebrationis when they marry abroad but do need such capacity when the marriage takes place in England. The second rule subject to attack is the notorious ‘exception’ based on Sottomayer v de Barros (No 2)2 which allows a foreign incapacity to be ignored when an English domiciliary marries in England, but not when the marriage takes place abroad.
The Riccarton and Raeberry Castle beds in Kirkcudbrightshire have hitherto been regarded as Wenlock in age, and the Hawick Rocks as Llandovery. Detailed mapping and revision of the graptolite faunas shows that the Raeberry Castle beds are Llandovery and the Riccarton beds Wenlock in age. On structural evidence the Hawick Rocks south of Kirkcudbright are considered to be younger than the Riccarton beds. The Riccarton beds in the area are formally defined as the Ross Formation and the Raeberry Castle beds as the Raeberry Castle Formation. Directional data suggest that the sediment forming the Raeberry Castle Formation was derived from the west and the sediment forming the Ross Formation and Hawick Rocks was derived from the north-east.
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