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  • 1
    Publication Date: 2017-09-23
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 17, Pages 2177: A Methodology for the Design of Application-Specific Cyber-Physical Social Sensing Co-Simulators Sensors doi: 10.3390/s17102177 Authors: Borja Bordel Sánchez Ramón Alcarria Álvaro Sánchez-Picot Diego Sánchez-de-Rivera Cyber-Physical Social Sensing (CPSS) is a new trend in the context of pervasive sensing. In these new systems, various domains coexist in time, evolve together and influence each other. Thus, application-specific tools are necessary for specifying and validating designs and simulating systems. However, nowadays, different tools are employed to simulate each domain independently. Mainly, the cause of the lack of co-simulation instruments to simulate all domains together is the extreme difficulty of combining and synchronizing various tools. In order to reduce that difficulty, an adequate architecture for the final co-simulator must be selected. Therefore, in this paper the authors investigate and propose a methodology for the design of CPSS co-simulation tools. The paper describes the four steps that software architects should follow in order to design the most adequate co-simulator for a certain application, considering the final users’ needs and requirements and various additional factors such as the development team’s experience. Moreover, the first practical use case of the proposed methodology is provided. An experimental validation is also included in order to evaluate the performing of the proposed co-simulator and to determine the correctness of the proposal.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
    Published by MDPI Publishing
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  • 2
    Publication Date: 2018-03-09
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 826: Mapping Wildfire Ignition Probability Using Sentinel 2 and LiDAR (Jerte Valley, Cáceres, Spain) Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18030826 Authors: Yolanda Sánchez Sánchez Antonio Martínez-Graña Fernando Santos Francés Marina Mateos Picado Wildfire is a major threat to the environment, and this threat is aggravated by different climatic and socioeconomic factors. The availability of detailed, reliable mapping and periodic and immediate updates makes wildfire prevention and extinction work more effective. An analyst protocol has been generated that allows the precise updating of high-resolution thematic maps. For this protocol, images obtained through the Sentinel 2A satellite, with a return time of five days, have been merged with Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) data with a density of 0.5 points/m2 in order to obtain vegetation mapping with an accuracy of 88% (kappa = 0.86), which is then extrapolated to fuel model mapping through a decision tree. This process, which is fast and reliable, serves as a cartographic base for the later calculation of ignition-probability mapping. The generated cartography is a fundamental tool to be used in the decision making involved in the planning of preventive silvicultural treatments, extinguishing media distribution, infrastructure construction, etc.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
    Published by MDPI Publishing
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  • 3
    Publication Date: 2017-02-09
    Description: Analyses of possible synergies between energy recovery and water management are essential for achieving sustainable improvements in the performance of irrigation water networks. Improving the energy efficiency of water systems by hydraulic energy recovery is becoming an inevitable trend for energy conservation, emissions reduction, and the increase of profit margins as well as for environmental requirements. This paper presents the state of the art of hydraulic energy generation in drinking and irrigation water networks through an extensive review and by analyzing the types of machinery installed, economic and environmental implications of large and small hydropower systems, and how hydropower can be applied in water distribution networks (drinking and irrigation) where energy recovery is not the main objective. Several proposed solutions of energy recovery by using hydraulic machines increase the added value of irrigation water networks, which is an open field that needs to be explored in the near future.
    Electronic ISSN: 2073-4441
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
    Published by MDPI Publishing
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  • 4
    Publication Date: 2018-02-24
    Description: Water, Vol. 10, Pages 226: Analysis of Environmental Taxes to Finance Wastewater Treatment in Spain: An Opportunity for Regeneration? Water doi: 10.3390/w10020226 Authors: Leticia Gallego Valero Encarnación Moral Pajares Isabel Román Sánchez José Sánchez Pérez The treatment of wastewater, financed through environmental taxes, is key to the development of a sustainable economy. The objective of this study is to verify whether the tax loads on wastewater discharges applied in Spain are effective, allowing the costs of secondary and tertiary treatments to be financed. First, the revenues collected from taxes related to the discharge of wastewater in the different Spanish regions, which reach an average value of 0.72 €/m3, are analysed. Second, the costs of secondary wastewater treatment, prolonged aeration, activated sludge with nutrient removal, and activated sludge without nutrient removal are studied. Additionally, the costs of tertiary treatments, with environmental objectives and for reuse purposes, are considered. The analysis carried out reveals high heterogeneity in the amounts collected through taxes in the different Autonomous Communities. In some cases, these amounts do not cover the costs of the treatments. An urgent review is therefore required of the financing systems applied in order to secure a level of income that can cover all the exploitation and investment costs incurred.
    Electronic ISSN: 2073-4441
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
    Published by MDPI Publishing
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  • 5
    Publication Date: 2018-03-06
    Description: Sensors, Vol. 18, Pages 772: Performance Evaluation of LoRa Considering Scenario Conditions Sensors doi: 10.3390/s18030772 Authors: Ramon Sanchez-Iborra Jesus Sanchez-Gomez Juan Ballesta-Viñas Maria-Dolores Cano Antonio F. Skarmeta New verticals within the Internet of Things (IoT) paradigm such as smart cities, smart farming, or goods monitoring, among many others, are demanding strong requirements to the Radio Access Network (RAN) in terms of coverage, end-node’s power consumption, and scalability. The technologies employed so far to provide IoT scenarios with connectivity, e.g., wireless sensor network and cellular technologies, are not able to simultaneously cope with these three requirements. Thus, a novel solution known as Low Power - Wide Area Network (LP-WAN) has emerged as a promising alternative to provide with low-cost and low-power-consumption connectivity to end-nodes spread in a wide area. Concretely, the Long-Range Wide Area Network (LoRaWAN) technology is one of the LP-WAN platforms that is receiving greater attention from both the industry and the academia. For that reason, in this work, a comprehensive performance evaluation of LoRaWAN under different environmental conditions is presented. The results are obtained from three real scenarios, namely, urban, suburban, and rural, considering both dynamic and static conditions, hence a discussion about the most proper LoRaWAN physical-layer configuration for each scenario is provided. Besides, a theoretical coverage study is also conducted by the use of a radio planning tool considering topographic maps and a precise propagation model. From the attained results, it can be concluded that it is necessary to evaluate the propagation conditions of the deployment scenario prior to the system implantation in order to reach a compromise between the robustness of the network and the transmission data-rate.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
    Published by MDPI Publishing
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  • 6
    Publication Date: 2017-12-21
    Description: Materials, Vol. 10, Pages 1447: An Easy-Made, Economical and Efficient Carbon-Doped Amorphous TiO2 Photocatalyst Obtained by Microwave Assisted Synthesis for the Degradation of Rhodamine B Materials doi: 10.3390/ma10121447 Authors: Adan Luna-Flores José Sosa-Sánchez Marco Morales-Sánchez Ricardo Agustín-Serrano J. Luna-López The search for novel materials and the development of improved processes for water purification have attracted the interest of researchers worldwide and the use of titanium dioxide in photocatalytic processes for the degradation of organic pollutants contained in water has been one of the benchmarks. Compared to crystalline titanium dioxide (cTiO2), the amorphous material has the advantages of having a higher adsorption capacity and being easier to dope with metal and non-metal elements. In this work, we take advantage of these two features to improve its photocatalytic properties in the degradation of Rhodamine B. The structural characterization by XRD analysis gives evidence of its amorphous nature and the SEM micrographs portray the disc morphology of 300 nm in diameter with heterogeneous grain boundaries. The degradation of Rhodamine B tests with the amorphous TiO2 using visible light confirm its improved catalytic activity compared to that of a commercial product, Degussa P25, which is a well-known crystalline material.
    Electronic ISSN: 1996-1944
    Topics: Mechanical Engineering, Materials Science, Production Engineering, Mining and Metallurgy, Traffic Engineering, Precision Mechanics
    Published by MDPI Publishing
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  • 7
    Publication Date: 2016-12-23
    Description: This paper proposes a view-invariant gait recognition framework that employs a unique view invariant model that profits from the dimensionality reduction provided by Direct Linear Discriminant Analysis (DLDA). The framework, which employs gait energy images (GEIs), creates a single joint model that accurately classifies GEIs captured at different angles. Moreover, the proposed framework also helps to reduce the under-sampling problem (USP) that usually appears when the number of training samples is much smaller than the dimension of the feature space. Evaluation experiments compare the proposed framework’s computational complexity and recognition accuracy against those of other view-invariant methods. Results show improvements in both computational complexity and recognition accuracy.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
    Published by MDPI Publishing
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  • 8
    Publication Date: 2016-05-06
    Description: Wireless Multimedia Sensor Networks (WMSNs) are a special type of Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) where large amounts of multimedia data are transmitted over networks composed of low power devices. Hierarchical routing protocols typically used in WSNs for multi-path communication tend to overload nodes located within radio communication range of the data collection unit or data sink. The battery life of these nodes is therefore reduced considerably, requiring frequent battery replacement work to extend the operational life of the WSN system. In a wireless sensor network with mesh topology, any node may act as a forwarder node, thereby enabling multiple routing paths toward any other node or collection unit. In addition, mesh topologies have proven advantages, such as data transmission reliability, network robustness against node failures, and potential reduction in energy consumption. This work studies the feasibility of implementing WMSNs in mesh topologies and their limitations by means of exhaustive computer simulation experiments. To this end, a module developed for the Synchronous Energy Saving (SES) mode of the IEEE 802.15.5 mesh standard has been integrated with multimedia tools to thoroughly test video sequences encoded using H.264 in mesh networks.
    Electronic ISSN: 1424-8220
    Topics: Chemistry and Pharmacology , Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
    Published by MDPI Publishing
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  • 9
    Publication Date: 2016-06-02
    Description: Water irrigation systems are required to provide adequate pressure levels in any sort of network. Quite frequently, this requirement is achieved by using pressure reducing valves (PRVs). Nevertheless, the possibility of using hydraulic machines to recover energy instead of PRVs could reduce the energy footprint of the whole system. In this research, a new methodology is proposed to help water managers quantify the potential energy recovering of an irrigation water network with adequate conditions of topographies distribution. EPANET has been used to create a model based on probabilities of irrigation and flow distribution in real networks. Knowledge of the flows and pressures in the network is necessary to perform an analysis of economic viability. Using the proposed methodology, a case study has been analyzed in a typical Mediterranean region and the potential available energy has been estimated. The study quantifies the theoretical energy recoverable if hydraulic machines were installed in the network. Particularly, the maximum energy potentially recovered in the system has been estimated up to 188.23 MWh/year) with a potential saving of non-renewable energy resources (coal and gas) of CO2 137.4 t/year.
    Electronic ISSN: 2073-4441
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
    Published by MDPI Publishing
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  • 10
    Publication Date: 2016-11-05
    Description: Special preparation of Santa Barbara Amorphous (SBA)-15, mesoporous silica with highly hexagonal ordered, these materials have been carried out for creating adsorbents exhibiting an enhanced and partially selective adsorption toward CO2. This creation starts from an adequate conditioning of the silica surface, via a thermo-alkaline treatment to increase the population of silanol species on it. CO2 adsorption is only reasonably achieved when the SiO2 surface becomes aminated after put in contact with a solution of an amino alkoxide compound in the right solvent. Unfunctionalized and amine-functionalized substrates were characterized through X-ray diffraction, N2 sorption, Raman spectroscopy, electron microscopy, 29Si solid-state Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR), and NH3 thermal programmed desorption. These analyses proved that the thermo-alkaline procedure desilicates the substrate and eliminates the micropores (without affecting the SBA-15 capillaries), present in the original solid. NMR analysis confirms that the hydroxylated solid anchors more amino functionalizing molecules than the unhydroxylated material. The SBA-15 sample subjected to hydroxylation and amino-functionalization displays a high enthalpy of interaction, a reason why this solid is suitable for a strong deposition of CO2 but with the possibility of observing a low-pressure hysteresis phenomenon. Contrastingly, CH4 adsorption on amino-functionalized, hydroxylated SBA-15 substrates becomes almost five times lower than the CO2 one, thus giving proof of their selectivity toward CO2. Although the amount of retained CO2 is not yet similar to or higher than those determined in other investigations, the methodology herein described is still susceptible to optimization.
    Electronic ISSN: 1996-1944
    Topics: Mechanical Engineering, Materials Science, Production Engineering, Mining and Metallurgy, Traffic Engineering, Precision Mechanics
    Published by MDPI Publishing
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