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Abstract

To solve the nonlinear control problems of the unknown time-varying environmental disturbances and parametric uncertainties for ship course-keeping control, this paper presents an adaptive self-regulation PID (APID) scheme which can ensure the boundedness of all signals in the ship course-keeping control system by using the Lyapunov direct method. Compared with the traditional PID control scheme, the APID control scheme not only is independent of the model parameters and the unknown input, but also can regulate the gain of PID adaptively and resist time-varying disturbances well. Simulation results illustrate the effectiveness and the robustness of the proposed control scheme.

Abstract

The Stirling engine is a device in which thermal energy is transformed into mechanical energy without any contact between the heat carrier and the working gas enclosed in the engine. The mentioned feature makes this type of engine very attractive for the use of the recovery energy taken from other heat devices. One of the potential applications of Stirling engines is the use of thermal energy generated in the ship’s engine room for producing electricity. The work presents the concept of the Stirling engine type alpha powered by the recovery energy. The model of Stirling engine developed in this work allows a quantitative assessment of the impact of the design features of the engine, primarily the heat exchange surfaces and the volume of control spaces, on the achieved efficiency and power of the engine. Using an iterative procedure, Stirling engine simulation tests were carried out taking into account the variable structural features of the system. The influence of the size of the heater and the cooler, as well as the effectiveness of the regenerator and the temperature of the heat source on the efficiency and power produced by the Stirling engine have been presented.

Abstract

Implant treatment is a proven method in dentistry for partial and complete missing teeth reconstruction. In some clinical situations it is advisable to limit the number of implants, which can be obtained by making a bridge connecting the patient’s own tooth with the implant. So far, the possibility of using safe and permanent connections of natural teeth with implants has been examined to a small extent due to the dangers resulting from the different mobility of dental implants and teeth.

An attempt was made to use vibro-acoustic techniques to evaluate various combinations of teeth and implants. Pilot studies were carried out on cadavers-pig mandibles with implants. There were recorded sounds in the immediate vicinity of the mandible formed in response to impulse excitations carried out with a point hit against a tooth or implant before and after their joining with a bridge. The comparison of spectra allows to see features indicating a high probability of being able to distinguish between the examined configurations.

The results of the research should contribute to a better understanding of the mutual relations between the dental implant and the tooth, which are included in bridge. In the perspective, it will enable to assess the level of safety and to identify clinical situations that allow to obtain dental bridges based on teeth and implants.

Abstract

Cabin placement layout is an important part of ship cabin layout design. A good cabin placement layout can improve the efficiency of the ship’s cabin arrangement. However, optimisation of the layout of cabin placement is not widely studied and more often relies on the experience of the staff. Thus, a novel methodology combining systematic layout planning and a genetic algorithm to optimise the cabin placement is presented in this paper. First key elements are converted by a systematic planning method that is often applied in factory layout, and a preliminary cabin placement layout model is established according to these key elements. Then the circulation strength and adjacency strength are taken as sub-objectives to establish a mathematical model, and an improved genetic algorithm is used to optimise the model. The result of the optimisation is compared with the initial schemes to verify the validity of the algorithm. Finally, the human factors are introduced according to the actual situation. The AHP method is used to select the layout scheme of the cabin that is most likely to be applied in the actual cabin layout.

Abstract

Dynamic properties are vital for the working reliability of aft stern tube bearings. However, the determination of such properties currently involves several simplifications and assumptions. To obtain its dynamic characteristics accurately, the aft stern tube bearing was divided into several bearing segments. The oil film reaction force was considered in the calculation of shaft alignment, and the journal deflection and actual oil film thickness were obtained accordingly. Subsequently, the perturbed Reynolds equation was solved using the finite difference method when the dynamic characteristics of journal bearings with finite width were evaluated. Then, a calculation program was developed and verified by comparing with the results of other studies. Finally, the dynamic characteristics were calculated under different revolutions. The results showed that the stiffness at the vertical direction of the aft stern tube bearing was several times that of the horizontal direction and varied with the revolutions of the shafting system. These findings can provide the foundation for the precise calculation of the journal trajectory under dynamic conditions, as well as for the evaluation of the oil film thickness. Moreover, the results led to favorable conditions for the accurate calculation of the shafting whirling vibration.

Abstract

This article is Part II of the paper containing a description and results of the experimental studies of the deformations, friction processes and structural damping that occur in the foundation bolted joints of propulsion plant components and auxiliary machinery installed on sea-going ships. Part I of this research work presents an analysis of the rigid mountings of machines and devices to the foundations on steel or resin chocks, and explains the need to carry out relevant research in this area. It also presents the description and results of experimental studies carried out for a foundation bolted joint with a conventionally used steel chock. Part II (this article) contains a description and results of similar studies carried out for a foundation bolted joint with a modern chock – cast from epoxy resin compound (EPY), specially developed for this purpose. Then, a comparative analysis of the results obtained for both bolted joints in question was made and the foundation chocks of the poured-in-place resin compound were demonstrated to better fulfill their technical tasks than the steel chocks traditionally used for this purpose.

Abstract

The argan tree is a multi-purpose tree (fruit tree, medicinal, cosmetic, and pastoral plant) found in the semi-arid and arid regions of North Africa. It is under strong human pressure such as the impact of population growth, crop expansion, overgrazing, and wood and fruit exploitation that are also the main causes of desertification in the rest of the world. Over the years, interest in this beneficial tree and demand for its products have increased: especially with the increase in the price of argan oil, which is now one of the most expensive and much in demand oils in the world. This increase has led to many socio-political, economic and cultural changes at the national, regional and local levels, especially in farming behaviour and the habits of the local population. This bibliographic research was therefore conducted in order to analyse the various changes and their consequences on the planning, conservation, and management methods implemented in the argan tree area and their effects on the habits of the local population in order to ensure the sustainability of the Argan Tree Biosphere Reserve in Morocco. Indeed, the aims of this study were, firstly, to analyse the change dynamic of argan forest area in the ABR; and secondly, to investigate the impact of various socio-political, economic and cultural changes resulting from increased prices of argan oil on planning, conservation, and management methods of argan tree ecosystem and on the habits of the local population.

Abstract

Over the years, it has been the subject of discussions whether efficiency-oriented interventions contribute to an equity distribution of wealth across regions and whether equity orientation is a source of inefficiency. While efficiency refers to the maximization of growth in the national economy, convergence-oriented policy is focused on equalizing the level of development at interregional level. The case of Georgia was studied as a developing country facing various challenges in terms of economic growth and regional divergence. This article provides an overview of the economic development trends taking place in the regions of Georgia and reveals the high level of divergence within the country. A logarithmic model was created and used to run simulations to predict the possible results of convergence-oriented policy in Georgia. In order to make the forecast we estimated GDP per capita and average growth rates in all the Georgian regions. Use of the model allowed us to answer two main questions: (1) If the last 5 and 10 year average growth rates are maintained, how long will it take for the poorest region to converge to the wealthiest one? (2) What should be the minimum growth rate in the poorest region for the upcoming 5, 10 and 20 years in order to converge to the wealthiest capital? Results of the calculations showed that convergence between regions can only be achieved by slowing down economic growth in relatively wealthier regions and by focusing on the development of the poorest ones. The results of the study revealed that the convergence process will be faster for the regions with medium or big cities and growth centres. Therefore, creating competitive growth centres would be a reasonable regional policy objective to promote fast economic growth and future convergence without redirecting the growth process from more developed areas to lagging ones.

Abstract

A spectrum of low-frequency (20–30 Hz) amplitude fluctuations of the ultrasonic (10 MHz) signal specularly scattered from water surfaces covered with monomolecular and thicker crude oil origin films of well-defined, oceanographically relevant viscoelastic properties was examined in laboratory and at-sea conditions. The relationship between the surface water wave (30 Hz) damping coefficient and the oil layer thickness was established, and compared to the one predicted by the classical Stokes theory. The depression of the spectral energy density of wind-driven waves by surface films was inferred from the ratio of acoustic signal fluctuations spectra with/without films, and compared to that resulting from the Marangoni damping theory applicable to monolayers of particular surface viscoelasticity. The agreement between the theory and experimental data was satisfactory. As shown in at-sea experiments performed with a free-floating, buoy-like acoustic system, and an artificial oil slick spread over the Baltic Sea surface, the film’s rheological surface properties can be recovered from acoustic surface probing, as well as oil spill edge detection. Simultaneous statistical analyses of the scattered signal amplitude distribution parameters turned out to be unequivocally related to the oil substance fraction weight, oil layer thickness, and the form of oil contamination.