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Open access

Peter Kyslan

Abstract

The human issue with the concept of finality constitutes a fundamental platform for the philosophical concept of transhumanism. This paper addresses the historical-philosophical perspective of transhumanism with emphasis put on the 18th and 19th centuries, whereby possible anticipatory actions with respect to transhumanist thought are analyzed. In this sense, the need for a philosophical reflection on transhumanism is justified. The main part of this paper is aimed at philosophical and ethical questions related to cryonics as being one of the most dominant and feasible transhumanist practices. The characteristics and critical analysis of cryonics focuses on the problem of understanding death from a philosophical standpoint.

Open access

Othman A. Al Hanbali, Haji Muhammad Shoaib Khan, Muhammad Sarfraz, Mosab Arafat, Shakeel Ijaz and Abdul Hameed

Abstract

Use of transdermal patches can evade many issues associated with oral drug delivery, such as first-pass hepatic metabolism, enzymatic digestion attack, drug hydrolysis and degradation in acidic media, drug fluctuations, and gastrointestinal irritation. This article reviews various transdermal patches available in the market, types, structural components, polymer role, and the required assessment tools. Although transdermal patches have medical applications for smoking cessation, pain relief, osteoporosis, contraception, motion sickness, angina pectoris, and cardiac disorders, advances in formulation development are ongoing to make transdermal patches capable of delivering more challenging drugs. Transdermal patches can be tailored and developed according to the physicochemical properties of active and inactive components, and applicability for long-term use. Therefore, a number of chemical approaches and physical techniques for transdermal patch development are under investigation.

Open access

Ulrich Kerscher

Abstract

Plastic, plastic waste and marine litter indisputably is one of the key environmental issues of the 21st century. The already existing amount of accumulated marine litter, the high quantity of plastic waste escaping from waste management streams every year in combination with the low recycling rates for plastic and the missing awareness of the consumer for sustainable consumption pose a permanent threat to the ecosystem, biodiversity and human health. What is more, as economic and ecological interests strongly deviate from each other, the transformation of this status quo towards a more sustainable future will take place very slowly. Against this background, this paper will shortly outline the multitude of problems connected to plastic products throughout a productís lifecycle and introduce the idea of a circular economy. On this basis, the paper will critically analyze the strategy papers and the ongoing legislation of the EU introduced to solve these problems and to realize the transformation process of the EU-economy towards a circular economy from a sustainable development point of view. On the one hand, awareness raising is one main strategy of the EU to achieve this transformation, on the other hand, educational institutions are not specifically mentioned by the EU. In order to address this shortcoming, the paper will constitute the teaching principle global development politics / education for sustainable development as one measure to increase consumersí awareness and sustainable consumption. In general, this paper will proof that the topical area plastics can fruitfully be implemented at German schools for primary and secondary education in order to strengthen the education for sustainable development.

Open access

Atefeh Moghaddam, Jacques Teghem, Daniel Tuyttens, Farouk Yalaoui and Lionel Amodeo

Abstract

We consider a single-machine bi-objective scheduling problem with rejection. In this problem, it is possible to reject some jobs. Four algorithms are provided to solve this scheduling problem. The two objectives are the total weighted completion time and the total rejection cost. The aim is to determine the set of efficient solutions. Four heuristics are described; they are implicit enumeration algorithms forming a branching tree, each one having two versions according to the root of the tree corresponding either to acceptance or rejection of all the jobs. The algorithms are first illustrated by a didactic example. Then they are compared on a large set of instances of various dimension and their respective performances are analysed.

Open access

Stefan Boroń and Tomasz Kosiek

Abstract

Countless people and organisations have been wrestling with the practical application of sustainability and sustainable development. Yet there is no rigorous and unequivocal template that can be followed for management because the meaning of the key concepts of sustainability and development in particular haven’t been properly identified. Although the fundamental meaning of the word sustainability is continuance, the concept has its controversies especially when it drifts into the ‘abstract’ and even becomes confused with sustainable development. For our purposes it is the ability of development and of its associated processing activities to continue that is being managed. For management effectiveness, a system framework is necessary but more importantly what goes into that system has to be rigorously and unambiguously defined. In our case, the mechanisms describing the practicalities that govern the sustainability of development have been clearly identified in this paper and called by name. The concept of development needs clarification, while the accepted popular ‘three pillar’ depiction of sustainable development is also fundamentally flawed when compared with the form of words of the ‘Brundtland’ definition. This well-known ‘Venn representation’ implies a type of ‘balance’ or ‘synergy’ at the heart of sustainability management. In fact, because of the fundamentally unsustainable nature of current development processes, the ‘balance’ turns into a trade-off amongst the three sustainability players. For real sustainable development there can be no such trade-off. Once the misunderstandings are clarified the true basics of sustainability and sustainable development are fed into a standard ISO14001 iteration loop for management to commence.

Open access

Nela Poláková and Petr Dostál

Abstract

This paper deals with the issue of welding two different materials – titanium and stainless steel (UNS N50400 + X5CrNi 18-10). These two materials have completely different chemical compositions and mechanical properties; therefore, process of their mutual welding is complicated. Melting temperature of both materials is also different. An innovative MIG LSC arc welding method with an additional material has been selected for this purpose. A protective atmosphere was used in order to avoid galvanic corrosion of materials that would preclude the welding process. Aforementioned atmosphere contained 100% Ar. The MIG LSC welding method was designed by Fronius. Presented experiment compares utilization of following 4 different electrodes (additional material) for the welding of titanium and stainless steel: Ti, Fe, corrosion-resistant Fe and CuSi3 electrode. Tensile test was utilized for evaluation of weldment mechanical properties. Measured results were supplemented with a metallographic analysis snapshot and tensile diagram.

Open access

Donny Harisuseno, Dian Noorvy Khaeruddin and Riyanto Haribowo

Abstract

Time of concentration, Tc, is defined as time elapsed from the beginning of rainfall infiltrated into soil layer until it reaches a constant infiltration rate (fc) which is indicated an equilibrium subsurface flow rate. In hydrological view, time of concentration plays a significant role in elaboration of transformation of rainfall into runoff in a watershed. The aims of this research are to define influence of soil density and soil water content in determining time of concentration using infiltration concept based on water balance theory, and to find out the effect of land slope this time. Watershed laboratory experiment using rainfall simulator was employed to examine time of concentration associated with infiltration process under different slope, soil density and soil water content based on water balance concept. The steady rainfall intensity was simulated using sprinklers which produced 2 dm3∙min−1. Rainfall, runoff and infiltration analysis were carried out at laboratory experiment on soil media with varied of soil density (d) and soil water content (w), where variation of land slopes (s) were designed in three land slopes 2, 3 and 4%. The results show that relationship between soil density and land slope to time of concentration showed a quadratic positive relationship where the higher the soil density address to the longer time of concentration. Moreover, time of concentration had an inverse relationship with soil water content and land slope that means time of concentration decreased when the soil water content increased.

Open access

Roberto Franzini Tibaldeo

Abstract

The word “utopia” was coined by Thomas More and refers to the unreal and ideal state described in his Utopia, first published in 1516. Following the example of Plato’s Republic, More as well as other thinkers and writers of the 16th and 17th century reflect on the political relevance of utopia and provide unique accounts of ideal, just, and perfect “no places”, as paradigms and standards of social, political, and religious reformation of the coeval world. However, the political significance of utopia relies on a basic anthropological feature, which incidentally is already underlined by More: the relationship between imagination and experience. This means that: 1) the human being’s “eidetic” freedom is characterised by the inseparable relationship between imagination, reflection, experience and action; 2) utopia is capable of disclosing the transformative and normative features related to the human being’s constitution; 3) utopia can be fruitfully used to motivate human will and mobilise support for human flourishing. In this article I endeavour to show that among contemporary philosophers it is Hans Jonas who most fully develops the anthropological significance of utopia by investigating the very relationship between imagination and experience, and by underlining how the eidetic and reflective constitution of the human being leads to ethics. As a further goal, I wish to highlight that the anthropological relevance of utopia can shed light on our imaginative and ambivalent nature, and provide a practical and educational basis for the achievement of an “ethics of images” for the current digital era. For this purpose I shall draw on the thinking of Marie-José Mondzain and Jean-Jacques Wunenburger, among other scholars.

Open access

Alexandra Ioana Daniela Rus, Monica Violeta Achim and Sorin Nicolae Borlea

Abstract

The aim of this paper consists in providing a general overview of the notion of intellectual capital as a key to maximizing the corporate performance. Following the researches carried out, we present the delimitations of the intellectual capital in relation with human capital, relational capital and structural capital. In terms of its measurement, we focus on a question which could be a solid base for the next studies: “Can intellectual capital be evaluated?” In this regard, a number of methods (direct and methods based on assets returns), generic model and individual company models were presented, concluding in this way with a hierarchy in terms of utility and their importance.

Open access

Jinfeng Zhou, Lingjie Yu, Qian Ding and Rongwu Wang

Abstract

Fibers are raw materials used for manufacturing yarns and fabrics, and their properties are closely related to the performances of their derivatives. It is indispensable to implement fiber identification in analyzing textile raw materials. In this paper, seven common fibers, including cotton, tencel, wool, cashmere, polyethylene terephthalate (PET), polylactic acid (PLA), and polypropylene (PP), were prepared. After analyzing the merits and demerits of the current methods used to identify fibers, near-infrared (NIR) spectroscopy was used owing to its significant superiorities, the foremost of which is it can capture the tiny information differences in chemical compositions and morphological features to display the characteristic spectral curve of each fiber. First, the fibers’ spectra were collected, and then, the relationships between the vibrations of characteristic chemical groups and the corresponding wavelengths were researched to organize a spectral information library that would be beneficial to achieve quick identification and classification. Finally, to achieve intelligent detection, pattern recognition approaches, including principal component analysis (PCA) (used to extract information of interest), soft independent modeling of class analogy (SIMCA), and linear discrimination analysis (LDA) (defined using two classifiers), assisted in accomplishing fiber identification. The experimental results – obtained by combining PCA and SIMCA – displayed that five of seven target fibers, namely, cotton, tencel, PP, PLA, and PET, were distributed with 100% recognition rate and 100% rejection rate, but wool and cashmere fibers yielded confusing results and led to relatively low recognition rate because of the high proportion of similarities between these two fibers. Therefore, the six spectral bands of interest unique to wool and cashmere fibers were selected, and the absorbance intensities were imported into the classifier LDA, where wool and cashmere were group-distributed in two different regions with 100% recognition rate. Consequently, the seven target fibers were accurately and quickly distinguished by the NIR method to guide the fiber identification of textile materials.