Research

  • 20813
  • 0
  • Using Teachers’ Volunteer Experiences in the Dominican Republic to Develop Social Responsibility in Canadian Middle-School Students: An ‘Authors in the Classroom’ Approach
    Using Teachers’ Volunteer Experiences in the Dominican Republic to Develop Social Responsibility in Canadian Middle-School Students: An ‘Authors in the Classroom’ Approach
    Online version of an article originally published as: Using Teachers’ Volunteer Experiences in the Dominican Republic to Develop Social Responsibility in Canadian Middle-School Students: An ‘Authors in the Classroom’ Approach. Interamerican Journal of Education for Democracy. Vol 2, No 2 (2009). Publisher URL: http://scholarworks.iu.edu/journals/index.php/ried/article/view/161
    Using action research to develop human factors approaches to improve assembly quality during early design and
    Using action research to develop human factors approaches to improve assembly quality during early design and
    Engineers at a large electronics new product initiation site were interested in developing human factors (HF) approaches to help improve assembly quality during two stages of their production assembly design: early design of tasks, fixtures and tooling; and during early ramp-up of new assembly lines at outsourcing sites. Researchers worked in an action research approach with company engineers and er­gonomists to integrate HF into both design stages. This paper presents the human factors approaches and discusses the challenges of using human factors to improve assembly quality. For the first stage of early design, a HF-design for assembly (HF-DFA) scorecard was developed with 22 items scored on a O (no risk or problem) to 2 (high risk or problems) scale. Items included physical risks, such as grip size and force, movement risks, such as re-grasping or re-orienting, visual risks, such as visual accuracy and inspection difficulty, and cognitive issues such as ability to detect a problem and risk of damage to part or component. High scores were associated with assembly tasks that were both reported as difficult by operators, and also had quality problems. The HF-DFA was adopted as a controlled engineering document and used to proactively score assembly tasks prior to final design of tasks, fixtures and tooling. In the second stage of early ramp, researchers combined the HF-DFA and other HF and performance-based metrics into a modified HF-house of quality (HF-HoQ) approach where the focus was on "worker" requirements rather than the traditional customer requirements. The HF-HoQ was evaluated using video of four identical tasks performed at different outsourcing locations that had a seven-fold difference in defect rates. The HF-HoQ successfully detected the site with the highest defect rate, but not the lowest. The authors recommend further testing and development of approaches that attempt to bring insight from HF to the issue of improving assembly quality. Relevance to industry: Human factors is broader than injury prevention, and has been linked to assembly quality. Two HF approaches were developed to help improve quality in early design stages and during early ramp-up of assembly lines . Companies are encouraged to develop and evaluate HF approaches for improving assembly quality., Village, J., Salustri, F. A., & Neumann, W. P. (2017). Using action research to develop human factors approaches to improve assembly quality during early design and ramp-up of an assembly line. International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics, 61, 107-119. doi:10.1016/j.ergon.2017.05.006
    Using knowledge translation as a framework for the design of a research protocol.
    Using knowledge translation as a framework for the design of a research protocol.
    Knowledge translation has been defined as the synthesis, dissemination, exchange and ethically-sound application of knowledge to improve health, resulting in a stronger health care system. This paper will describe the process of using an integrated knowledge translation approach to design a research protocol that will examine the effectiveness of a web-based patient educational intervention. It will begin with a description of integrative knowledge translation, followed by the presentation of a specific case example, in which integrative knowledge translation was used to develop a nursing intervention. The major elements of integrative knowledge translation that pertain to: need for a knowledge user, identification of the research approach, examination of study feasibility, and the presentation of outcomes will be addressed throughout this discussion., Fredericks, S., Martorella, G. & Catallo, C. (2014). Using knowledge translation as a framework for the design of a research protocol. International Journal of Nursing Practice.
    Using microsimulation to evaluate safety and operational implications of newer roundabout layouts for European road networks
    Using microsimulation to evaluate safety and operational implications of newer roundabout layouts for European road networks
    “Standard” roundabouts, for example those designed in some European countries, can often be characterized by low levels of safety or capacity and a high degree of sustainability. Given the proliferation of newer layouts, it is of interest to explore whether design practices could be improved by capitalizing on the experience gained internationally. Operational aspects of some of these designs have been explored previously, but there is a need to compare both the operational and safety performance of new designs to that of standard roundabouts. The objective of this paper is to evaluate the safety and operational implications of various potential alternatives to the standard roundabouts that proliferate in Europe and elsewhere. Microsimulation is used to simulate traffic operations at roundabout layout alternatives at the same levels of volume to capacity (V/C) ratio and also with the same traffic flow. Operational performance measures include the common level of service parameters, while measures of safety are based initially on time to collision (TTC) values. Threshold values of TTC were then applied in defining conflicts that are used for crash-based safety evaluation by applying crash-conflict models estimated in published research. Interesting insights were revealed, suggesting that the newer layouts should be considered where warranted by cost-benefit considerations. Keywords: road safety; traffic simulation; roundabout design; sustainable-transport indicators, Giuffrè, T., Trubia, S., Canale, A., & Persaud, B. (2017). Using Microsimulation to Evaluate Safety and Operational Implications of Newer Roundabout Layouts for European Road Networks. Sustainability, 9(11), 2084., (This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainability in Civil Engineering: from Sustainable Materials to Sustainable Cities)
    Using multispectral airborne LiDAR data for land/water discrimination: a case study at Lake Ontario, Canada
    Using multispectral airborne LiDAR data for land/water discrimination: a case study at Lake Ontario, Canada
    Coastal areas are environmentally sensitive and are affected by nature events and human activities. Land/water interaction in coastal areas changes over time and, therefore, requires accurate detection and frequent monitoring. Multispectral Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) systems, which operate at different wavelengths, have become available. This new technology can provide an effective and accurate solution for the determination of the land/water interface. In this context, we aim to investigate a set of point features based on elevation, intensity, and geometry for this application, followed by a presentation of an unsupervised land/water discrimination method based on seeded region growing algorithm. The multispectral airborne LiDAR sensor, the Optech Titan, was used to acquire LiDAR data at three wavelengths (1550, 1064, and 532 nm) of a study area covering part of Lake Ontario in Scarborough, Canada for testing the discrimination methods. The elevation- and geometry-based features achieved an average overall accuracy of 75.1% and 74.2%, respectively, while the intensity-based features achieved 63.9% accuracy. The region growing method succeeded in discriminating water from land with more than 99% overall accuracy, and the land/water boundary was delineated with an average root mean square error of 0.51 m. The automation of this method is restricted by having double returns from water bodies at the 532 nm wavelength., Morsy, S., Shaker, A., & El-Rabbany, A. (2018). Using multispectral airborne LiDAR data for Land/Water discrimination: A case study at Lake Ontario, Canada. Applied Sciences, 8(3), 349., (This article belongs to the Special Issue Laser Scanning)
    Using technology to enhance and encourage dance-based exercise
    Using technology to enhance and encourage dance-based exercise
    This study investigated the role of Self-Service Technologies (SSTs) in dance-based exercise in order to begin exploring the motivations behind the use (or not) of SSTs by ordinary men and women in this context. The research approach employed interviews to gain insights into participants’ use of SSTs and their exercise practices, in order to start establishing ways in which dance can be re/incorporated into people’s lives through the design of appropriate SSTs. Findings from this study highlight the significant opportunity to further explore how the properties of music and dance can be integrated into the design of new SSTs. Literature suggests dance could be a beneficial exercise format for many people and self-service technology abounds for exercise but is often not used consistently. Our interviews asked participants about dance-based exercise and SSTs for exercise and showed that there is an opportunity to design SSTs to help people access dance-based exercise. SSTs should help people learn dance, build confidence, and dance alone or with others. SSTs could facilitate movement and increase engagement with physical activity whilst addressing issues around logistics, confidence and dance knowledge and experience. Keywords: Public health, Computer science, Alethea Blackler, Shital Desai, Levi Swann, Marianella Chamorro-Koc, Gene Moyle, Mikaela Stephens. Using technology to enhance and encourage dance-based exercise. Heliyon 5 (2019) e01241. doi: 10.1016/j.heliyon.2019. e01241.
    Validating an infrared thermal switch as a novel access technology
    Validating an infrared thermal switch as a novel access technology
    Background Recently, a novel single-switch access technology based on infrared thermography was proposed. The technology exploits the temperature differences between the inside and surrounding areas of the mouth as a switch trigger, thereby allowing voluntary switch activation upon mouth opening. However, for this technology to be clinically viable, it must be validated against a gold standard switch, such as a chin switch, that taps into the same voluntary motion. Methods In this study, we report an experiment designed to gauge the concurrent validity of the infrared thermal switch. Ten able-bodied adults participated in a series of 3 test sessions where they simultaneously used both an infrared thermal and conventional chin switch to perform multiple trials of a number identification task with visual, auditory and audiovisual stimuli. Participants also provided qualitative feedback about switch use. User performance with the two switches was quantified using an efficiency measure based on mutual information. Results User performance (p = 0.16) and response time (p = 0.25) with the infrared thermal switch were comparable to those of the gold standard. Users reported preference for the infrared thermal switch given its non-contact nature and robustness to changes in user posture. Conclusions Thermal infrared access technology appears to be a valid single switch alternative for individuals with disabilities who retain voluntary mouth opening and closing., Memarian, N., Venetsanopoulos, A. N., & Chau, T. (2010). Validating an infrared thermal switch as a novel access technology. Biomedical Engineering Online, 9(1), 38-38. doi:10.1186/1475-925X-9-38
    Validity of a theoretical model to examine blood oxygenation dependent optoacoustics
    Validity of a theoretical model to examine blood oxygenation dependent optoacoustics
    A theoretical model investigating the dependence of optoacoustic (OA) signal on blood oxygen saturation (SO2) is discussed. The derivations for the nonbandlimited and bandlimited OA signals from many red blood cells (RBCs) are presented. The OA field generated by many RBCs was obtained by summing the OA field emitted by each RBC approximated as a fluid sphere. A Monte Carlo technique was employed generating the spatial organizations of RBCs in two-dimensional. The RBCs were assumed to have the same SO2 level in a simulated configuration. The fractional number of oxyhemoglobin molecules, confined in a cell, determined the cellular SO2 and also defined the blood SO2. For the nonbandlimited case, the OA signal amplitude decreased and increased linearly with blood SO2 when illuminated by 700 and 1000 nm radiations, respectively. The power spectra exhibited similar trends over the entire frequency range (MHz to GHz). For the bandlimited case, three acoustic receivers with 2, 10, and 50 MHz as the center frequencies were considered. The linear variations of the OA amplitude with blood SO2 were also observed for each receiver at those laser sources. The good agreement between simulated and published experimental results validates the model qualitatively., Saha, R. (2012). Validity of a theoretical model to examine blood oxygenation dependent optoacoustics. J. Biomed. Opt, 17(5), p.055002.
    Vasculotide, an Angiopoietin-1 mimetic, reduces acute skin ionizing radiation damage in a preclinical mouse model
    Vasculotide, an Angiopoietin-1 mimetic, reduces acute skin ionizing radiation damage in a preclinical mouse model
    Background Most cancer patients are treated with radiotherapy, but the treatment can also damage the surrounding normal tissue. Acute skin damage from cancer radiotherapy diminishes patients’ quality of life, yet effective biological interventions for this damage are lacking. Protecting microvascular endothelial cells from irradiation-induced perturbations is emerging as a targeted damage-reduction strategy. Since Angiopoetin-1 signaling through the Tie2 receptor on endothelial cells opposes microvascular perturbations in other disease contexts, we used a preclinical Angiopoietin-1 mimic called Vasculotide to investigate its effect on skin radiation toxicity using a preclinical model. Methods Athymic mice were treated intraperitoneally with saline or Vasculotide and their flank skin was irradiated with a single large dose of ionizing radiation. Acute cutaneous damage and wound healing were evaluated by clinical skin grading, histology and immunostaining. Diffuse reflectance optical spectroscopy, myeloperoxidase-dependent bioluminescence imaging of neutrophils and a serum cytokine array were used to assess inflammation. Microvascular endothelial cell response to radiation was tested with in vitro clonogenic and Matrigel tubule formation assays. Tumour xenograft growth delay experiments were also performed. Appreciable differences between treatment groups were assessed mainly using parametric and non-parametric statistical tests comparing areas under curves, followed by post-hoc comparisons. Results In vivo, different schedules of Vasculotide treatment reduced the size of the irradiation-induced wound. Although skin damage scores remained similar on individual days, Vasculotide administered post irradiation resulted in less skin damage overall. Vasculotide alleviated irradiation-induced inflammation in the form of reduced levels of oxygenated hemoglobin, myeloperoxidase bioluminescence and chemokine MIP-2. Surprisingly, Vasculotide-treated animals also had higher microvascular endothelial cell density in wound granulation tissue. In vitro, Vasculotide enhanced the survival and function of irradiated endothelial cells. Conclusions Vasculotide administration reduces acute skin radiation damage in mice, and may do so by affecting several biological processes. This radiation protection approach may have clinical impact for cancer radiotherapy patients by reducing the severity of their acute skin radiation damage., Korpela, E., Yohan, D., Chin, L. C., Kim, A., Huang, X., Sade, S.. . Liu, S. K. (2014). Vasculotide, an angiopoietin-1 mimetic, reduces acute skin ionizing radiation damage in a preclinical mouse model. BMC Cancer, 14(1), 614-614. doi:10.1186/1471-2407-14-614
    Vehicle path planning for complete field coverage using genetic algorithms
    Vehicle path planning for complete field coverage using genetic algorithms
    In farming operations, one of the fundamental issues facing farmer is the cost of running the farm. If the equipment the farmer is using can be made more efficient, the cost of farming will be reduced. One way of making agricultural equipment more efficient is to develop automated or autonomous functions for the equipment. One of the fundamental tasks for autonomous equipment is to plan the path for the equipment to travel. This paper reports the research on the feasibility of creating an automated method of path planning for autonomous agricultural equipment. Genetic algorithms were chosen to plan the paths with a primary goal of creating an optimal path guiding the equipment to completely cover a field while avoiding all known obstacles. Two example fields were designed for evaluating the feasibility of this concept on simple problems. While simulation results verified the feasibility of this conceptual path planning method, they also indicated that further development would be required before the algorithm could actually be implemented on agricultural equipment for real-world field applications. Keywords: Automonous equipment, genetic algorithms, off-road vehicle, path planning, Ryerson, A. F., & Zhang, Q. (2007, July). Vehicle Path Planning for Complete Field Coverage Using Genetic Algorithms. Agricultural Engineering International: The CIGR Ejournal, IX.