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Sebastian Olesiak and Joanna Hydzik-Wiśniewska

Abstract

The paper evaluates the effectiveness of reinforcing a damaged earth structure with making counterfort drains in its slope. The system of counterfort drains changed the soil properties significantly over a long-term use. The evaluation was based on many years of field and laboratory tests and stability analysis. The field tests concerned the observation of N WST probing resistance change, and the laboratory tests concerned the change in soil consistency and water content. The paper presents the results of tests that were conducted over 13 years.

Open access

Muhammad Abdul Kadir and K. Siddique-e Rabbani

Abstract

Tetra-polar electrical impedance measurement (TPIM) with a square geometry of electrodes is useful in the characterization of epithelial tissues, especially in the detection of cervical cancer at precancerous stages. However, in TPIM, the peak planar sensitivity just below the electrode surface is almost zero and increases to a peak value at a depth of about one third to one half of the electrode separation. To get high sensitivity for the epithelial layer, having thicknesses of 200 μm to 300 μm, the electrode separation needed is less than 1 mm, which is difficult to achieve in practical probes. This work proposes a conical conducting layer in front of a pencil like probe with a square geometry of TPIM electrodes to create virtual electrodes with much smaller separation at the body surface, thus increasing the sensitivity of the epithelial tissues. To understand the improvements, if any, 3D sensitivity distribution and transfer impedance were simulated using COMSOL Multiphysics software for a simplified body tissue model containing a 300 μm epithelial layer. It has been shown that fractional contribution of an epithelial layer can be increased several times placing a cylindrical conducting layer in between the tissue surface and the electrodes, which can further be enhanced using a conical conducting layer. The results presented in this paper can be used to choose an appropriate electrode separation, conducting layer height and cone parameters for enhanced sensitivity in the epithelial layer.

Open access

Soumia Bellil, Khelifa Abbeche and Ouassila Bahloul

Abstract

The study of collapsible soils that are generally encountered in arid and semi-arid regions remains a major issue for geotechnical engineers. This experimental study, carried out on soils reconstituted in the laboratory, aims firstly to present a method of reducing the collapse potential to an acceptable level by treating them with different levels of bentonite–cement mixture while maintaining the water content and degree of compactness, thus reducing eventual risks for the structures implanted on these soils. Furthermore, a microscopic study using scanning electron microscopy was carried out to explore the microstructure of the soil in order to have an idea of the phenomena before and after treatment. The results show that treatment with a bentonite–cement mixture improves the geotechnical and mechanical characteristics, modifies the chemical composition of the soil, reduces the collapse potential and the consistency limits. The microstructural study and the X-ray energy dispersive spectroscopy analysis clearly illustrate an association of elementary particles in the soil aggregates, whereby the arrangement of these aggregates leads to the formation of a dense and stable material.

Open access

Jakob Orschulik, Diana Pokee, Tobias Menden, Steffen Leonhardt and Marian Walter

Abstract

Lung pathologies such as edema, atelectasis or pneumonia are potentially life threatening conditions. Especially in critically ill and mechanically ventilated patients, an early diagnosis and treatment is crucial to prevent an Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome [1]. Thus, continuous monitoring tool for the lung condition available at the bedside would be highly appreciated. One concept for this is Electrical Impedance Tomography (EIT). In EIT, an electrode belt of typically 16 or 32 electrodes is attached at the body surface and multiple impedance measurements are performed. From this, the conductivity change inside the body is reconstructed in a two-dimensional image. In various studies, EIT proved to be a useful tool for quantifying recruitment maneuvers, the assessment of the ventilation homogeneity, the detection of lung edema or perfusion monitoring [2, 3, 4, 5]. Nevertheless, the main problem of EIT is the low spatial resolution (compared to CT) and the limitation to two dimensional images. In this paper, we try to address the latter issue: Instead of projecting conductivity changes onto a two-dimensional image, we adjust electrode positions to focus single tetrapolar measurements to specific, three-dimensional regions of interest. In earlier work, we defined guidelines to achieve this focusing [6, 7]. In this paper, we demonstrate in simulations and in a water tank experiment that applying these guidelines can help to detect pathologies in specific lung regions.

Full access

David DeBruyne and Larry Sorensen

Open access

Jolanta Anna Prusiel and Krzysztof Gierej

Abstract

The article presents the analysis of complex stress states in the concrete structure of grain silos, caused by non-centric emptying. The authors present a combination of loads from the pressure of bulk solid on the silo chamber according to Eurocode 1, Part 4 [11], which should be taken into account when emptying on large eccentricities in action assessment class 3 (AAC3) silos. For the example of a cylindrical wheat silo with a height of 25 m and a diameter of 10 m, the researchers carried out an analysis regarding the impact of the size of the eccentric discharge outlet on the distributions of forces and bending moments in a reinforced concrete wall.

Open access

Robert F. Melendy

Abstract

In a succession of articles published over 65 years ago, Sir Alan Lloyd Hodgkin and Sir Andrew Fielding Huxley established what now forms our physical understanding of excitation in nerve, and how the axon conducts the action potential. They uniquely quantified the movement of ions in the nerve cell during the action potential, and demonstrated that the action potential is the result of a depolarizing event across the cell membrane. They confirmed that a complete depolarization event is followed by an abrupt increase in voltage that propagates longitudinally along the axon, accompanied by considerable increases in membrane conductance. In an elegant theoretical framework, they rigorously described fundamental properties of the Na+ and K+ conductances intrinsic to the action potential.

Notwithstanding the elegance of Hodgkin and Huxley’s incisive and explicative series of discoveries, their model is mathematically complex, relies on no small number of stochastic factors, and has no analytical solution. Solving for the membrane action potential and the ionic currents requires integrations approximated using numerical methods. In this article I present an analytical formalism of the nerve action potential, Vm and that of the accompanying cell membrane electric field, Em. To conclude, I present a novel description of Vm in terms of a single, nonlinear differential equation. This is an original stand-alone article: the major contribution is the latter, and how this description coincides with the cell membrane electric field. This work has necessitated unifying information from two preceding papers [1,2], each being concerned with the development of closed-form descriptions of the nerve action potential, Vm.

Open access

Oliver Pabst

Abstract

It has been demonstrated before that human skin can be modeled as a memristor (memory resistor). Here we realize a memristor bridge by applying two voltages of opposite signs at two different skin sites. By this setup it is possible to use human skin as a frequency doubler and half-wave rectifier which is an application of the non-linear electrical properties of human skin. The corresponding electrical measurements are non-linear since these are affected by the applied stimulus itself.

Restricted access

David DeBruyne and Larry Sorensen