|Commenced in January 2007||Frequency: Monthly||Edition: International||Paper Count: 206|
The construction industry and housing subsector are fraught with risks that have the potential of negatively impacting on the achievement of project objectives. The success or otherwise of most construction projects depends to large extent on how well these risks have been managed. The recent paradigm shift by the subsector to use of formal risk management approach in contrast to hitherto developed rules of thumb means that risks must not only be identified but also properly assessed and responded to in a systematic manner. The study focused on identifying risks associated with housing development projects and prioritisation assessment of the identified risks in order to provide basis for informed decision. The study used a three-step identification framework: review of literature for similar projects, expert consultation and questionnaire based survey to identify potential risk factors. Delphi survey method was employed in carrying out the relative prioritization assessment of the risks factors using computer-based Analytical Hierarchical Process (AHP) software. The results show that 19 out of the 50 risks significantly impact on housing development projects. The study concludes that although significant numbers of risk factors have been identified as having relevance and impacting to housing construction projects, economic risk group and, in particular, ‘changes in demand for houses’ is prioritised by most developers as posing a threat to the achievement of their housing development objectives. Unless these risks are carefully managed, their effects will continue to impede success in these projects. The study recommends the adoption and use of the combination of multi-technique identification framework and AHP prioritization assessment methodology as a suitable model for the assessment of risks in housing development projects.
A need exists to identify the sources of risks associated with the process automation systems within petrochemical companies or similar energy related industries. These companies use many different process automation technologies in its value chain. A crucial part of the process automation system is the information technology component featuring in the supervisory control layer. The ever-changing technology within the process automation layers and the rate at which it advances pose a risk to safe and predictable automation system performance. The age of the automation equipment also provides challenges to the operations and maintenance managers of the plant due to obsolescence and unavailability of spare parts. The main objective of this research was to determine the risk sources associated with the equipment that is part of the process automation systems. A secondary objective was to establish whether technology managers and technicians were aware of the risks and share the same viewpoint on the importance of the risks associated with automation systems. A conceptual model for risk sources of automation systems was formulated from models and frameworks in literature. This model comprised six categories of risk which forms the basis for identifying specific risks. This model was used to develop a questionnaire that was sent to 172 instrument technicians and technology managers in the company to obtain primary data. 75 completed and useful responses were received. These responses were analyzed statistically to determine the highest risk sources and to determine whether there was difference in opinion between technology managers and technicians. The most important risks that were revealed in this study are: 1) the lack of skilled technicians, 2) integration capability of third-party system software, 3) reliability of the process automation hardware, 4) excessive costs pertaining to performing maintenance and migrations on process automation systems, and 5) requirements of having third-party communication interfacing compatibility as well as real-time communication networks.
The biochemical technology has been developing extremely fast since the middle of the last century. The main reason for such development represents a requirement for large production of high-quality biologically manufactured products such as pharmaceuticals, foods, and beverages. The impact of the biochemical industry on the world economy is enormous. The great importance of this industry also results in intensive development in scientific disciplines relevant to the development of biochemical technology. In addition to developments in the fields of biology and chemistry, which enable to understand complex biochemical processes, development in the field of control theory and applications is also very important. In the paper, the control for the biochemical reactor for the milk fermentation was studied. During the fermentation process, the biophysical quantities must be precisely controlled to obtain the high-quality product. To control these quantities, the bioreactor’s stirring drive and/or heating system can be used. Available commercial biochemical reactors are equipped with open loop or conventional linear closed loop control system. Due to the outstanding parameters variations and the partial nonlinearity of the biochemical process, the results obtained with these control systems are not satisfactory. To improve the fermentation process, the self-tuning adaptive control system was proposed. The use of the self-tuning adaptive control is suggested because the parameters’ variations of the studied biochemical process are very slow in most cases. To determine the linearized mathematical model of the fermentation process, the recursive least square identification method was used. Based on the obtained mathematical model the linear quadratic regulator was tuned. The parameters’ identification and the controller’s synthesis are executed on-line and adapt the controller’s parameters to the fermentation process’ dynamics during the operation. The use of the proposed combination represents the original solution for the control of the milk fermentation process. The purpose of the paper is to contribute to the progress of the control systems for the biochemical reactors. The proposed adaptive control system was tested thoroughly. From the obtained results it is obvious that the proposed adaptive control system assures much better following of the reference signal as a conventional linear control system with fixed control parameters.
Digital multimedia contents such as image, video, and audio can be tampered easily due to the availability of powerful editing softwares. Multimedia forensics is devoted to analyze these contents by using various digital forensic techniques in order to validate their authenticity. Digital image forensics is dedicated to investigate the reliability of digital images by analyzing the integrity of data and by reconstructing the historical information of an image related to its acquisition phase. In this paper, a survey is carried out on the forgery detection by considering the most recent and promising digital image forensic techniques.
In this study, we have proposed a gesture to emotion recognition method using flex sensors mounted on metacarpophalangeal joints. The flex sensors are fixed in a wearable glove. The data from the glove are sent to PC using Wi-Fi. Four gestures: finger pointing, thumbs up, fist open and fist close are performed by five subjects. Each gesture is categorized into sad, happy, and excited class based on the velocity and acceleration of the hand gesture. Seventeen inspectors observed the emotions and hand gestures of the five subjects. The emotional state based on the investigators assessment and acquired movement speed data is compared. Overall, we achieved 77% accurate results. Therefore, the proposed design can be used for emotional state detection applications.
The introduction of tilt-rotor aircraft into the existing civilian air transportation system will provide beneficial effects due to tilt-rotor capability to combine the characteristics of a helicopter and a fixed-wing aircraft into one vehicle. The disposability of reliable tilt-rotor simulation models supports the development of such vehicle. Indeed, simulation models are required to design automatic control systems that increase safety, reduce pilot's workload and stress, and ensure the optimal aircraft configuration with respect to flight envelope limits, especially during the most critical flight phases such as conversion from helicopter to aircraft mode and vice versa. This article presents a process to build a simplified tilt-rotor simulation model, derived from the analysis of flight data. The model aims to reproduce the complex dynamics of tilt-rotor during the in-flight conversion phase. It uses a set of scheduled linear transfer functions to relate the autopilot reference inputs to the most relevant rigid body state variables. The model also computes information about the rotor flapping dynamics, which are useful to evaluate the aircraft control margin in terms of rotor collective and cyclic commands. The rotor flapping model is derived through a mixed theoretical-empirical approach, which includes physical analytical equations (applicable to helicopter configuration) and parametric corrective functions. The latter are introduced to best fit the actual rotor behavior and balance the differences existing between helicopter and tilt-rotor during flight. Time-domain system identification from flight data is exploited to optimize the model structure and to estimate the model parameters. The presented model-building process was applied to simulated flight data of the ERICA Tilt-Rotor, generated by using a high fidelity simulation model implemented in FlightLab environment. The validation of the obtained model was very satisfying, confirming the validity of the proposed approach.
Algebra is one of the important fields of mathematics. It concerns with the study and manipulation of mathematical symbols. It also concerns with the study of abstractions such as groups, rings, and fields. Due to the development of these abstractions, it is extended to consider other structures, such as vectors, matrices, and polynomials, which are non-numerical objects. Computer algebra is the implementation of algebraic methods as algorithms and computer programs. Recently, many algebraic cryptosystem protocols are based on non-commutative algebraic structures, such as authentication, key exchange, and encryption-decryption processes are adopted. Cryptography is the science that aimed at sending the information through public channels in such a way that only an authorized recipient can read it. Ring theory is the most attractive category of algebra in the area of cryptography. In this paper, we employ the algebraic structure called skew -Armendariz rings to design a neoteric algorithm for zero knowledge proof. The proposed protocol is established and illustrated through numerical example, and its soundness and completeness are proved.
System identification of an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV), to acquire its mathematical model, is a significant step in the process of aircraft flight automation. The need for reliable mathematical model is an established requirement for autopilot design, flight simulator development, aircraft performance appraisal, analysis of aircraft modifications, preflight testing of prototype aircraft and investigation of fatigue life and stress distribution etc. This research is aimed at system identification of a fixed wing UAV by means of specifically designed flight experiment. The purposely designed flight maneuvers were performed on the UAV and aircraft states were recorded during these flights. Acquired data were preprocessed for noise filtering and bias removal followed by parameter estimation of longitudinal dynamics transfer functions using MATLAB system identification toolbox. Black box identification based transfer function models, in response to elevator and throttle inputs, were estimated using least square error technique. The identification results show a high confidence level and goodness of fit between the estimated model and actual aircraft response.
In many applied engineering problems, structural analysis is usually conducted by assuming a rigid bed, while imposing the effect of structure bed flexibility can affect significantly on the structure response. This article focuses on investigation and evaluation of the effects arising from considering a soil-structure system in evaluation of dynamic characteristics of a steel structure with respect to elastic and inelastic behaviors. The recorded structure acceleration during Taiwan’s strong Chi-Chi earthquake on different floors of the structure was our evaluation criteria. The respective structure is an eight-story steel bending frame structure designed using a displacement-based direct method assuring weak beam - strong column function. The results indicated that different identification methods i.e. reverse Fourier transform or transfer functions, is capable to determine some of the dynamic parameters of the structure precisely, rather than evaluating all of them at once (mode frequencies, mode shapes, structure damping, structure rigidity, etc.). Response evaluation based on the input and output data elucidated that the structure first mode is not significantly affected, even considering the soil-structure interaction effect, but the upper modes have been changed. Also, it was found that the response transfer function of the different stories, in which plastic hinges have occurred in the structure components, provides similar results.
Causal relation identification is a crucial task in information extraction and knowledge discovery. In this work, we present two approaches to causal relation identification. The first is a classification model trained on a set of knowledge-based features. The second is a deep learning based approach training a model using convolutional neural networks to classify causal relations. We experiment with several different convolutional neural networks (CNN) models based on previous work on relation extraction as well as our own research. Our models are able to identify both explicit and implicit causal relations as well as the direction of the causal relation. The results of our experiments show a higher accuracy than previously achieved for causal relation identification tasks.
A smart city project embraces benefits and costs which can be classified under direct and indirect categories. Externalities come into the picture, but they are often difficult to quantify. Despite this barrier, policy makers need to carry out cost-benefit analysis to justify the huge investments needed to make a city smart. The recent trend is towards the engagement of the private sector to utilize their resources and expertise, especially in the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) areas, where innovations blossom. This study focuses on the identification of costs (on a life cycle basis) and benefits associated with smart city project developments based on a comprehensive literature review and case studies, where public-private partnerships would warrant consideration, the related costs and benefits are highlighted. The findings will be useful for policy makers of cities.
The choice of applicable analysis methods in safety or systems engineering depends on the depth of knowledge about a system, and on the respective lifecycle phase. However, the analysis method chain still shows gaps as it should support system analysis during the lifecycle of a system from a rough concept in pre-project phase until end-of-life. This paper’s goal is to discuss an analysis method, the VISSE Shell Model Analysis (VISMA) method, which aims at closing the gap in the early system lifecycle phases, like the conceptual or pre-project phase, or the project start phase. It was originally developed to aid in the definition of the system boundary of electronic system parts, like e.g. a control unit for a pump motor. Furthermore, it can be also applied to non-electronic system parts. The VISMA method is a graphical sketch-like method that stratifies a system and its parts in inner and outer shells, like the layers of an onion. It analyses a system in a two-step approach, from the innermost to the outermost components followed by the reverse direction. To ensure a complete view of a system and its environment, the VISMA should be performed by (multifunctional) development teams. To introduce the method, a set of rules and guidelines has been defined in order to enable a proper shell build-up. In the first step, the innermost system, named system under consideration (SUC), is selected, which is the focus of the subsequent analysis. Then, its directly adjacent components, responsible for providing input to and receiving output from the SUC, are identified. These components are the content of the first shell around the SUC. Next, the input and output components to the components in the first shell are identified and form the second shell around the first one. Continuing this way, shell by shell is added with its respective parts until the border of the complete system (external border) is reached. Last, two external shells are added to complete the system view, the environment and the use case shell. This system view is also stored for future use. In the second step, the shells are examined in the reverse direction (outside to inside) in order to remove superfluous components or subsystems. Input chains to the SUC, as well as output chains from the SUC are described graphically via arrows, to highlight functional chains through the system. As a result, this method offers a clear and graphical description and overview of a system, its main parts and environment; however, the focus still remains on a specific SUC. It helps to identify the interfaces and interfacing components of the SUC, as well as important external interfaces of the overall system. It supports the identification of the first internal and external hazard causes and causal chains. Additionally, the method promotes a holistic picture and cross-functional understanding of a system, its contributing parts, internal relationships and possible dangers within a multidisciplinary development team.
Madura Strait is considered as one of the busiest shipping channels in Indonesia. High vessel traffic density in Madura Strait gives serious threat due to navigational safety in this area, i.e. ship collision. This study is necessary as an attempt to enhance the safety of marine traffic. Fuzzy inference system (FIS) is proposed to calculate risk collision of ships. Collision risk is evaluated based on ship domain, Distance to Closest Point of Approach (DCPA), and Time to Closest Point of Approach (TCPA). Data were collected by utilizing Automatic Identification System (AIS). This study considers several ships’ domain models to give the characteristic of marine traffic in the waterways. Each encounter in the ship domain is analyzed to obtain the level of collision risk. Risk level of ships, as the result in this study, can be used as guidance to avoid the accident, providing brief description about safety traffic in Madura Strait and improving the navigational safety in the area.
The paper addresses the problem of line-of-sight (LOS) vs. non-line-of-sight (NLOS) propagation link identification in ultra-wideband (UWB) wireless networks, which is necessary for improving the accuracy of radiolocation and positioning applications. A LOS/NLOS likelihood hypothesis testing approach is applied based on exploiting distinctive statistical features of the channel impulse response (CIR) using parameters related to the “skewness” of the CIR and its root mean square (RMS) delay spread. A log-normal fit is presented for the probability densities of the CIR parameters. Simulation results show that different environments (residential, office, outdoor, etc.) have measurable differences in their CIR parameters’ statistics, which is then exploited in determining the nature of the propagation channels. Correct LOS/NLOS channel identification rates exceeding 90% are shown to be achievable for most types of environments. Additional improvement is also obtained by combining both CIR skewness and RMS delay statistics.
This article presents a method of using the one dimensional piezo-electric patch on beam model for structural identification. A hybrid element constituted of one dimensional beam element and a PZT sensor is used with reduced material properties. This model is convenient and simple for identification of beams. Accuracy of this element is first verified against a corresponding 3D finite element model (FEM). The structural identification is carried out as an inverse problem whereby parameters are identified by minimizing the deviation between the predicted and measured voltage response of the patch, when subjected to excitation. A non-classical optimization algorithm Particle Swarm Optimization is used to minimize this objective function. The signals are polluted with 5% Gaussian noise to simulate experimental noise. The proposed method is applied on beam structure and identified parameters are stiffness and damping. The model is also validated experimentally.
Celebrity and brand mascot endorsement have been explored for more than three decades. Both endorsers can effectively transfer their reputation to corporate image and can influence the customers to purchase the product. However, there was little known about the mediators between the level of endorsement and its effect on buying behavior. The objective of the current study is to identify the gab of the previous studies and to seek possible mediators. It was found that consumer’s memory and identification are the mediators, of source credibility and endorsement effect. A future study should confirm the model of endorsement, which was established in the current study.
Available commercial applications of power system stabilizers assure optimal damping of synchronous generator’s oscillations only in a small part of operating range. Parameters of the power system stabilizer are usually tuned for the selected operating point. Extensive variations of the synchronous generator’s operation result in changed dynamic characteristics. This is the reason that the power system stabilizer tuned for the nominal operating point does not satisfy preferred damping in the overall operation area. The small-signal stability and the transient stability of the synchronous generators have represented an attractive problem for testing different concepts of the modern control theory. Of all the methods, the adaptive control has proved to be the most suitable for the design of the power system stabilizers. The adaptive control has been used in order to assure the optimal damping through the entire synchronous generator’s operating range. The use of the adaptive control is possible because the loading variations and consequently the variations of the synchronous generator’s dynamic characteristics are, in most cases, essentially slower than the adaptation mechanism. The paper shows the development and the application of the self-tuning power system stabilizer based on recursive least square identification method and linear quadratic regulator. Identification method is used to calculate the parameters of the Heffron-Phillips model of the synchronous generator. On the basis of the calculated parameters of the synchronous generator’s mathematical model, the synthesis of the linear quadratic regulator is carried-out. The identification and the synthesis are implemented on-line. In this way, the self-tuning power system stabilizer adapts to the different operating conditions. A purpose of this paper is to contribute to development of the more effective power system stabilizers, which would replace currently used linear stabilizers. The presented self-tuning power system stabilizer makes the tuning of the controller parameters easier and assures damping improvement in the complete operating range. The results of simulations and experiments show essential improvement of the synchronous generator’s damping and power system stability.