The Competence Centre for Material Moisture (CMM) at the Karlsruh

The Competence Centre for Material Moisture (CMM) at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) is specialized on the development and testing of EM moisture sensors for various materials with a special focus on dielectric methods such as Time Domain Reflectometry (TDR) and Frequency Domain (FD) Methods. This paper gives a short review on the recent developments of new dielectric sensors and techniques for soil and snow moisture measurements of this institution. A short introduction to the basic measurement principles of dielectric measurement techniques will be given in the next paragraph.2.?Electromagnetic Moisture (EM) Measurement MethodsEM moisture measurement methods are so-called indirect methods that determine an electrical property which is closely related to the water content of the material, such as the electrical conductivity (EC) or the dielectric permittivity.

Since EC is also considerably affected by the salinity of the material, mainly the dielectric methods promise good opportunities for accurate measurements.There exists a broad variety of different dielectric moisture measurement methods [1]. Depending on the type of the material, the geometry of the sample, frequency range or desired accuracy, a suitable measurement method can be chosen. All methods are based on the interaction of an EM field and the material to be measured. A classification of the dielectric methods is possible by the way the EM field is generated and observed.So-called FD methods on the one hand show a sinusoidal time dependence of the field.

The steady state signals can be analysed by methods of the complex EM field theory.TD methods, on the other hand, use signals with a transient character, confering a pulse-like time shape on the EM field. Both devices and analyzing techniques of these two methods differ significantly and are explained in more detail in the following.2.1. Batimastat Frequency Domain (FD) TechniqueFD or capacitive techniques use capacitance to measure the dielectric permittivity of a surrounding medium and operate at one single measurement frequency. When the amount of water changes in the soil, a probe will measure a change in capacitance due to the change in dielectric permittivity that can be directly correlated with a change in soil water content [2]. During the last two decades, FD sensors have been gaining more and more acceptance in a broad range of agricultural, environmental, and engineering disciplines. Their widespread use has resulted partly from the simpler and thus less expensive electronics compared to TD methods. Currently, FD sensors are commercialized as single and multi-sensor capacitance probes with different installation and monitoring techniques [3].2.2.

3 ?Results and Discussion3 1 Structural Analysis of Powders3 1

3.?Results and Discussion3.1. Structural Analysis of Powders3.1.1. X-ray Diffraction StudiesFigure 2 shows the XRD patterns of mixed xWO3(1-x)Y2O3 powders for 2�� = 20��~65��. The main peaks for all samples are the same as the x is changed (matched with 1-0486, 2-0308, 5-0363, 44-0357, and 44-0399 JCPDS file numbers). A higher level of doping (x �� 0.85) shows a significant change in chemical composition as Y6WO12 is produced. Furthermore, the distance between similar atomic planes (d-spacing) in WO3 and Y2O3 is changed with ��d variation less than 10% as x is decreased. Maximum d-spacing of each sample occurs at a mean peak of XRD pattern and also can be determined from the Bragg Equation (n�� = 2dsin�� for n = 2, Bragg angel = ��, and �� = 1.

542 ?). In the case of x = 1 and at �� = 23.

184��, d-spacing from the XRD result is 3.8293 ?, whilst calculated d-spacing from the Bragg Equation is 3.9168?.Figure 2.XRD analysis of mixed powder for x = 1, 0.95, 0.9, 0.85, and 0.8.The average of crystallite size was determined from XRD results based-on the Scherrer Anacetrapib Equation (Scherrer Constant, K = 0.94 for spherical crystals with cubic symmetry [28] and �� = 1.542 ? from XRD results):FWHM=K��L cos��(1.a)then:L=K��(FWHM) GSK-3 cos��(1.b)Since K and �� are constant, the crystallite size is only related to the position (2��) and the Full-Width Half-Maximum (FWHM) value of the peaks. Table 1 shows the maximum, minimum, and average crystallite sizes of the samples determined from Equation (1.

b). Note that the calculation was carried out for the first 12 peaks of the XRD results.

Variations into the crystallite sizes in respect to Y2O3 co
Polymers based on lactic acid deserve great attention because they decompose by hydrolysis in the human body into nontoxic metabolites. Among the many applications found for these polymers in medicine, it is worth mentioning: a fracture fixer [1,2], surgical cord for the inner lesions suture [2�C6], various implants [7,8] and material for target therapy or controlled release of medications [9�C20]. The traditional method of poly(lactide) (PLA) synthesis required rigorous conditions: a high vacuum, long polymerization times and the consumption of great quantities of energy, using metal or metal oxide as a catalyst to speed up the reaction and minimize the pyrolysis by reducing the temperature [21�C29].

e pens of each group were fed one of two experimental diets cont

e pens of each group were fed one of two experimental diets containing 25 32% fish meal, 40 45% plant meals and 27. 5 30% oil supplied either as standard northern FO or as a VO blend comprising rapeseed, palm and Camelina oils in a ratio of 5,3,2. Diets were formulated to fully satisfy the nutritional requirements of salmonid fish and con tained similar levels of PUFA but different n 3 and n 6 PUFA contents, 25. 3% and 4. 6% in the FO diet and 13. 4% and 17. 1% in the VO diet, respectively. After 55 weeks, 25 fish per pen were sampled 24 h after the last meal. Fish were killed by a blow to the head follow ing anaesthesia, and intestinal tissue col lected, immediately frozen in liquid nitrogen and stored at ?70 C prior to analyses. Further details can be found in Bell et al.

Lipid extraction and fatty acid analyses Total lipid from 1 g of intestine of four fish per treat ment was extracted and determined gravimetrically, and fatty acid methyl esters prepared by acid catalysed transesterification of total lipid. FAME were separated and quantified by gas chromatography AV-951 as described in detail previously. Significant differences in intestinal fatty acid composition were determined by two way ANOVA using the SPSS 16. 0 statistical package. RNA extraction and purification Intestinal tissue from six individuals per experi mental group was homogenised in 2mL TRI Reagent and total RNA isolated following manufacturers instruc tions. RNA quantity and quality were assessed by gel electrophoresis and spectrophotometry, and 100 ug of total RNA from each sample fur ther cleaned by mini spin column purification.

Microarray hybridizations, image processing and statistical analysis The TRAITS SGP salmon 17k cDNA microarray described by Taggart et al. was used. A dual labelled experimental design was employed, with each sample being competi tively hybridised against a common pooled reference. The experiment comprised 2 genotypes �� 2 diets �� 6 biological replicates. Indirect labelling was employed for preparing the microarray targets. Antisense amplified RNA was produced from 500 ng of purified total RNA per sample using the Amino Allyl MessageAmpTM II aRNA Amplification Kit as per manufacturers instructions, followed by Cy3 or Cy5 fluor incorporation through dye coupling reaction. Microarray hybridizations were performed in a Lucidea semi automated system with out pre hybridization.

For each array, every labelled bio logical replicate and corresponding pooled reference were combined and added to the hybridization solution. Two post hybridization automatic washes followed by six manual washes to a final stringency of 0. 1�� SSC were performed before scanning. Scanning was performed at 10 um resolution using an Axon GenePix 4200AL Scanner. Laser power was constant and auto PMT was enabled to adjust each channel at less than 0. 1% feature saturation and Cy3 Cy5 mean intensity close to one. BlueFuse software was used to identify fea tures and extract fluorescence intensi

[13] cited by Jones et al [14]:NDVI=(NIR?R)/(NIR+R)(1)2 2 Multi

[13] cited by Jones et al. [14]:NDVI=(NIR?R)/(NIR+R)(1)2.2. Multispectral Plant CameraThe NDVI was used in a multispectral camera (3-chip CCD camera), type MS2100, to discriminate the plant material from the soil background. This custom-made camera measures the reflection intensities in the red, infrared, and green wavelengths and is the main component of a machine vision system for the sensor-based recording of weeds [15].The camera was controlled using the custom-made control software ��DT��, and the picture size is 659 H �� 494 V. Image processing conducted using specialized software (SYMACON GmbH, Barleben, Germany) and includes the erosion of single pixels. Image processing and control software were run on a dust-proofed industrial computer, such as an IPC-r 4 HE (PK Computer GmbH, Eppstein, Germany).

To detect the plant coverage level, only the red (peak wavelength: 670 nm, band pass size: 22 nm) and infrared (peak wavelength: 800 nm, band pass size: 65 nm) reflectance intensities of this 3 chip camera is used. Figure 2(a,b) show examples of red and NIR images of potato plants and soil.Figure 2.Potato plants detected using a multispectral camera. The red channel (a), and the NIR channel (b) were used to calculate the NDVI (c) and the binary images (d) through thresholding.From these images, a pixel-wise NDVI image can be calculated.

Figure 2(c) shows the results, and all of the plant material shows high intensity levels; the shadow regions on the soil are at the middle leve
For decades, many research works have studied different methods to reproduce the movements of a person in electromechanical and robotic systems.

These methodologies allow not only to replicate but also to improve and refine these movements for different uses for the welfare of humanity The teleoperation provides protection and increases the maneuverability of a huge variety of human-operated machines. Some examples are chemical, construction and mining industries and medicine. In the latter case, precise and reliable robotic systems must assist surgeons.Currently, improved control systems for biped walking robots Entinostat has attracted an increase research interest.

One approach is to model and reproduce human-like walking given the angular velocity and acceleration measured by gyroscopes and accelerometers installed on the legs of a person [1].In the work by Nakazawa et al., [2] an artificial vision system composed of 8 cameras captures dancing human movements to be imitated by a robot. In [3], a camera system is presented too, where Brefeldin_A Boesnach et al. introduce the concept of movement oriented to context. This is a third type of movement coming from the combination of task-oriented and position-oriented ones.

Conflict of InterestConflict of InterestThe authors declare no co

Conflict of InterestConflict of InterestThe authors declare no conflict of interest.
Halal verification and authentication of food products are an issue of major concern and one of these issues is related to the as halal verification of the alcohol content in foods, particularly in fermented beverages. From an Islamic point of view, alcohol is a serious matter and totally prohibited in food products. As food products are part of our daily life, Islamic Laws give a special significance to this issue. In Islam, foods containing alcohol are haram (prohibited or unlawful) for Muslim consumption [1]. Ethanol is the main constituent found in alcoholic beverages and other products that undergo fermentation.

Alcoholic drinks are totally prohibited in Islam, and even a small amount of the drink added into foods or drinks will render the products haram [2], but trace amounts of ethanol (naturally present as in fermented beverage) are allowed if the amount is insufficient to cause intoxication, usually less than 1% [3].Hence, developing analytical methods for halal verification is very important, especially for the Muslim consumers to protect them from prohibited or haram products and also to ensure product safety and quality. Conventional methods, such as HPLC, GC-MS & FTIR have been used for food analysis, where the food samples have to be sent to laboratories to analyze for the presence of alcohol. The process takes days and is very tedious. In addition, such methods are time consuming, are subject to sources of errors and discrepancies between laboratories, and need skilled personnel for operation of those expensive instruments [4].

Therefore, the development of alternative methods for ethanol determination which simplify the analysis is needed. If one could easily detect the presence of alcohol within minutes this would be very useful to the Muslim community for enforcement in determining the safe consumption of food products in terms of their halalness.In this context there is therefore a need to explore Batimastat alternative methods of ethanol detection for halal verification using a tool that is accurate, simple, low-cost, rapid, reliable and consumer-friendly. A biosensor is an excellent candidate for this purpose. Biosensors are versatile analytical tools, offering an attractive alternative for ethanol detection [5]. The use of enzyme-based biosensors for the detection of ethanol in complex samples offers better specificity and therefore, a simpler sample treatment. Alcohol oxidase (AOX) [6,7], NAD+-dependent alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) [8,9] and PQQ-dependent alcohol dehydrogenases [10,11] have all been used as bioselective elements in ethanol biosensors.

Whilst, if the objective is comfort, the system uses the blinds t

Whilst, if the objective is comfort, the system uses the blinds to control the light intensity and not the temperature, leaving this task to the AC.As showed in Scenario 1, the maximization objective restrains the system actions and decisions. The term ��decisions�� is used loosely as in the standard AmI systems they are only lightly proactive, with most of the system’s actions being the outcome of reactive programming. The reactive system provides fast response times and is very reliable, being used in most security procedures, although it lacks the ability to respond to new events and unplanned scenarios. One of the
Among the possible medium access control (MAC) techniques for wireless communication systems, the simplicity of random access schemes (i.e.

, ALOHA, carrier sense multiple access (CSMA)) make them suited to be implemented in several standards for short range applications [1,2]. Even though mitigation methods can be introduced in random access MAC (i.e., carrier sense multiple access with collision avoidance (CSMA-CA)), collisions are not completely avoidable. Nevertheless, some receivers have the ability to correctly receive a signal despite a significant level of co-channel interference, and collisions do not always lead to a total loss of the collided packets. This co-channel interference tolerance is called capture effect [3]. In the presence of concurrent transmissions at the same carrier frequency (collisions), packet capture may happen even for low values of the signal-to-interference ratio (SIR).

The first papers in the literature about the capture effect mostly consider Frequency Modulation (FM) demodulators [3�C5]. Later, the capture effect has been also Cilengitide studied in a variety of transceivers and MAC schemes, including ALOHA networks [6�C8], IEEE 802.11 devices [9�C11], Bluetooth radios [12] and cellular systems [13]. Focusing on IEEE802.15.4, several papers describing experimental results can be found in the literature [14�C22]. To give some examples, in [14], the packet capture probability of a Chipcom CC1000 transceiver [15] is measured with the aim of exploiting the capture effect for collision detection and recovery. Another study [16], carried out again with CC1000 transceivers, which work in the sub-1 GHz band, obtained a threshold for the capture probability for the case of one interferer, but unstable results for the multiple interferers. This early work seems to suggest that the number of interferers might have an important effect on the capture probability with CC1000 devices. However, in contrast to the previous CC1000 measurements, successive studies, carried out with Chipcon CC2420 transceivers [17], which operate in the 2.

In the temperature range of 296K-673K, the optical temperature se

In the temperature range of 296K-673K, the optical temperature sensors based on Er3+ doped silicate glass achieved a favorable result. Here, the operating temperature of 673K and sensitivity of 0.0023K-1, which excelled 448K and 0.004K-1 in fluoroindate glass [11], and 523K and 0.0052K-1 in chalcogendie glass [12], respectively. From Equation (2), the sensitivity depends on the ��E. Thus, the Er3+ doped silicate glass possesses a better sensitivity because its ��E of 512cm-1 is smaller than that of fluoroindate glass (��E �� 742cm-1) and chalcogendie glass (��E �� 850cm-1). The temperature resolution for the Er3+ doped silicate glass was also relatively high, at about 0.8K by employing a signal division circuitry with a precision of four digits or more.

Another important aspect to consider is the suitability of the Er3+ doped silicate glass to be fibered, and the possibility to the use the doped fiber as the active sensing element. Finally, a prototype optical high temperature sensor based on the FIR technique of the green up-conversion emissions in th
In the last years the employment of glucose oxidase (GOD) in glucose optical sensing has been largely investigated for clinical and industrial applications [1- 8]. Different immobilization procedures have been adopted [9-11] aiming to extend the linear range of optical sensors, their sensibility, specificity, reproducibility and time stability. Recently new approaches to ��in vivo�� glucose measurements by means of fluorescence-based systems have been critically reviewed by Pickup et al [12,13].

As far as concerns glucose determination by means of GOD endogenoeus fluorescence, two different approaches have been followed. The former is based on the changes in steady-state fluorescence of the flavine (FAD) region during the enzymatic reaction [14-16]. This approach is very simple and highly specific to glucose and the use of visible light (��exc = 420 nm; emission range = 480 �C 580 nm) makes it not very expensive as far as optical components. However, this approach requires large consumption of enzymes owing to the low quantum yield of flavine fluorescence. Moreover, fluorescence changes are not very strong and only particular immobilization procedures can allow a widening of linear calibration region for sensors operating in this wavelength range.

The second approach exploits the GOD UV Carfilzomib intrinsic fluorescence of some amino acids, basically tyrosine and tryptophan. This fluorescence is generally characterized by an excitation with two maxima at 224 and 278 nm and an emission around 340 nm and it is usually employed to obtain information about the enzyme configuration and bonding positions [17]. UV intrinsic fluorescence gives some advantages in comparison with flavine fluorescence: higher quantum yield and larger linear calibration range [2].

The most widespread irrigation scheduling method is based on the

The most widespread irrigation scheduling method is based on the determination of soil-water balance, which implies the estimation of crop evapotranspiration (ETC). Generally, ETC is calculated combining the measurements of potential (or reference) evapotranspiration (ET0) through meteorological stations with crop coefficients [5]. The latter need regular updating by the farmer for each crop type and growing stage. One rather new approach is to obtain crop coefficients with satellite based radiation images, rather than by using time-costly manual field observations. Recently, D��Urso et al. [6] developed such a system within the framework of two European projects: Demeter ( and Pleiades (

Access to the satellite data has become much easier and faster due to recent development with web-based access and due to improvements of sensor spatial resolution and accuracy. D��Urso et al. [6] report that satellite remote sensing is a mature technique, suited to be transferred to practical application for on farm, down to the plot, irrigation management.The other approach to irrigation scheduling entails the use of root zone sensor (RZS) to obtain soil moisture status and to replenish the water in growing medium to a preset level. In principle, this method by-passes the need to calculate ETC and works for any crop, as long as the set-points for the irrigation controller are correctly chosen.

So far, applications of RZS for irrigation management have been less common than those of the water balance method, but novel types of RZS, which are based on the measurement of soil dielectric properties, have opened new possibilities for irrigation scheduling Carfilzomib and nowadays, after the doubts originated from the first attempts with gypsum blocks, the irrigation industry worldwide has recognized that RZS�� are valuable tools for modern smart water application technology in intensive agriculture.In this review, the main features of RZS�� (for both soil moisture and salinity) designed to be connected to irrigation controller for commercial cultivations are identified and discussed. The paper is based on classical and more recent literature on soil moisture sensing technology and its application to irrigation scheduling.The findings, also unpublished, of our recent experimental works conducted in the framework of national or international projects (see Acknowledgements) have been considered. These works concern mostly the outdoor cultivation of pot ornamentals, which is an important horticultural sector in Italy.The main area for this kind of cultivation is located in Tuscany, around the town of Pistoia, definitely the most important centre in Europe for landscaping ornamentals [7]. In this area, nearly 1,400 ha, of approx.

Eye-RIS? system is a multipurpose platform designed to cover t

Eye-RIS? system is a multipurpose platform designed to cover the main low-level machine vision primitives with a competitive price in relation with the offered solutions in the market. The present commercial smart cameras provide a reduced collection of machine vision primitives in relation with the Eye-RIS system. On the other hand, we can reuse the same architecture to develop other sort of application much faster that an ad-hoc FPGA solution. Other advantages obtained making use of the focal plane are the GOPS (Giga Operations per Second) and power consumption, where the focal plane [17] (250 GOPS) consume 4mW per GOPS while in a DSP [18] (4.3 GOPS) the obtained consumption is 231 mW per GOPS.

Eye-RIS? system employs an innovative and proven architecture in which image-processing is accomplished following a hierarchical approach with two main levels:Early-processing: This level comes right after signal acquisition. The basic tasks at this level are meant to extract useful information from the input image stream. Outputs of this level are reduced sets of data comprising image features such as object locations, shapes, edges, etc.Post-processing: Here, the amount of data is significantly smaller. Inputs are abstract entities in many cases, and tasks are meant to output complex decisions and to support action-taking. These tasks may involve complex algorithms within long computational flows and may require Carfilzomib greater accuracy than early processing.

One unique characteristic of the Eye-RIS? vision systems compared to other commercial solutions is that image acquisition and early-processing take place at the sensor, which is actually a Smart Image Sensor (SIS).

In this device, image acquisition and pre-processing is performed simultaneously in all pixels of the SIS. Consequently, images do not need to be downloaded from the sensor for the initial stages of the processing. This concept of concurrent sensing-processing extends the Image Sensor concept to the Smart Image Sensor one. The Smart Camera integrates a SIS called Q-Eye, which is a quarter CIF (aka QCIF, 176 �� 144) resolution fully-programmable SIS. It consists of an array of 176 �� 144 cells plus a surrounding global circuitry.

Each cell comprises multi-mode optical sensors, pixel memories, and linear and non-linear analog processors and binary processors. Each cell is interconnected in several ways with its 8 neighboring cells, allowing for highly flexible, programmable, Entinostat efficient, real-time image acquisition and spatial processing operations. In Smart Image Sensors, each local processor is merged with an optical sensor.

2 1 Influence of Lateral Shearing on Biotinylated Antibodies in

2.1. Influence of Lateral Shearing on Biotinylated Antibodies in PBS/Glycerol SpotsThe effect of a shearing force (associated scientific research with the blocking step), applied to serial dilutions of biotinylated capture antibody, on subsequent capture and detection of E. coli O157:H7 is shown in Figure 1(a). One hundred microliters of blocking solution (PBS plus 1% BSA) was applied to one end of a microarray cover slip, and the solution flowed across the surface via capillary action, applying a shearing force to the spots. Biotinylated capture antibodies in 60% PBS:40% glycerol were printed onto streptavidin-coated slides, and the shearing force affected the unbound capture antibodies in the semisolid droplets.

The bacterial capture and detection procedures were then completed, and upon fluorescent slide scanning, the spots exhibited streaking that was dependent upon the concentration of biotinylated antibody [Figure 1(a)]. Thus, with approximately 0.125 ng/nL biotinylated capture antibody (or 137.5 pg per spot) and Inhibitors,Modulators,Libraries higher concentrations (printed with SMP4 Inhibitors,Modulators,Libraries pins; 1.1 nL delivery volume; 135 ��m spot diameter), the capture antibody was in excess (i.e., the streptavidin binding sites at the slide surface were saturated with biotinylated antibodies) and spread over the slide. Therefore, a capture antibody concentration of about 0.1 ng/nL, printed with SMP4 pins, would produce a droplet that allowed maximal surface contact relative to the amount of capture antibody. Indeed, the concentration that resulted in the largest fluorescent response and the widest spot diameter (as measured with a ruler and expressed in arbitrary units, or AU) at the point of contact printing (and minor streaking) was 0.

125 ng/nL [Figure 1(b)].Figure 1.(a) Spread of differing concentrations of biotinylated anti-E. coli O157:H7 capture antibodies (white box indicates site of contact printing by microarray printer), in 135 Inhibitors,Modulators,Libraries ��m diameter spots (1.1 nL) of 60% PBS:40% glycerol solution (v/v), across …From the image shown in Figure 1(a), the thixotropic-like properties of Inhibitors,Modulators,Libraries PBS/glycerol drops can be observed. From capture antibody concentrations of 0.125 ng/nL and greater, the surface at the points of contact printing on the streptavidin-coated slides became saturated with biotinylated antibodies.

Upon lateral shearing with the blocking solution, excess capture antibody that was occupying the three-dimensional space above the microarray AV-951 slide was forced over the streptavidin-coated slide (sol-like phase was apparently generated). During the hour-long blocking time, the PBS/glycerol solution exhibited properties like thixotropy (the original semisolid, selleck MG132 gel phase resumed), which allowed the unbound biotinylated capture antibodies to interact with, and bind to, the streptavidin surface. When bacteria were then presented for capture and detection, these capture antibodies could then participate in the immunoassay (i.e., they were not removed in the washing steps).2.2.