Artesis University College of Antwerp
Antwerpen, Belgium
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Audenaert A.,Artesis University College of Antwerp | Buyle M.,Artesis University College of Antwerp
Energy and Buildings | Year: 2012

Sustainable housing is receiving increasing attention by policy makers, architects, consumers and scholars. This study aims at enhancing our knowledge on the environmental impact of sustainable houses by performing a Life Cycle Assessment on a single case study. The case study is performed on a single low-energy building containing 19 flats using the Eco-indicator'99 method. The results indicate that the choice of insulating materials has a significant impact on the eco-score of the design. The materials' production turns out to be by far the most influential, which bears the consequence that architects and consumers should focus on choosing the best materials in terms of eco-score instead of focusing on an environmental-friendly design. Waste recycling (if possible) has a lower eco-score compared to waste disposal (dumping or burning). © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: SST-2007-1.2-01;SST-2007-1.2-02 | Award Amount: 3.21M | Year: 2009

The majority of the European roads are paved with asphalt material. The dismantling and end of life strategies for these pavements are very divergent among the EU member states and the associated countries. In general the share of recycling the reclaimed asphalt in new asphalt courses is rather lower than it could be technically. The Re-road project aims to address these problems with a holistic approach to the technical and environmental aspects of all steps in the recycling procedures of asphalt material. The overall objectives of the project is to o be able to raise the level of re-use of asphalt concrete to 99% with a minimum of downgrading of the material and a minimal introduction of virgin material into the mixes made with reclaimed asphalt.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ENV-NMP.2011.2.2-5 | Award Amount: 2.83M | Year: 2011

The main objective is to develop a novel atmospheric plasma technique for surface cleaning and coating deposition as well as two innovative coatings: a self-diagnostic protective coating and a coating provided with identification marker. The project aims at integrating the new plasma cleaning/deposition technique and the new coatings in a full-life protocol spanning surface cleaning and pre-treatment, deposition of protective and identification coatings, and complete removal of coatings. The plasma technique is proposed for surface cleaning and coating removal as alternative or complementary to the other non-contact techniques such as laser. This technique is characterized by no thermal heating, selectivity, chemical reduction of oxides, applicability on all substrates and competitive costs. The self-diagnostic coatings provide a long-lasting solution with an added value of easy and instant diagnostic of coating functionality through a nano-technological approach, reducing monitoring costs and time with no impact on tourist accessibility. The identification marker coating allows using nanotechnologies to obtain a transparent authenticity proof and cataloguing label. The compatibility of the new materials with the substrates is guaranteed intrinsically by their integration in the full-life protocol because it ensures its complete reversibility. The protocol is applicable on all substrate materials principally as preventing conservation, in the project its validation is proposed on metal substrates (silver and bronze) and on mural paintings, limestone and sandstone. The project also aims at implementing a demonstrator of the entire full-life protocol, which will be used for training cultural operators in organised events and fairs. An added value is also the strong participation of SMEs as conservation operators and as technological companies, which ensures the possibility of scaling up and placing the new products on the market.

Craeye B.,Ghent University | Craeye B.,Artesis University College of Antwerp | Geirnaert M.,Ghent University | Schutter G.D.,Ghent University
Construction and Building Materials | Year: 2011

High-performance concrete (HPC) with low w/b-ratio experiences a considerable chemical shrinkage and self-desiccation during its hydration process, leading to a rather high autogenous shrinkage deformation during hardening. In case the free deformation of the concrete is prevented, internal stresses are introduced, which can lead to premature cracks. These early-age cracks can severely affect the durability of a concrete structure. By adding super absorbing polymers (SAP) into the HPC as an internal curing agent, and by adding additional curing water to the concrete mixture, the chemical shrinkage and the self-desiccation during hydration of the concrete is counteracted and thus the autogenous shrinkage of the HPC can be significantly reduced. Unfortunately, this process of internal curing also has some disadvantageous effects on the mechanical properties. In search of an optimization of the internal curing process, an extensive experimental program was performed on HPC, using different degrees of internal curing, to assess the mechanical and thermal properties of the HPC, and to evaluate the effectiveness of the performed curing. The goal is to obtain a maximal autogenous shrinkage reduction and a minimal strength reduction. The resulting effect on the early-age cracking risk is simulated by means of finite element calculations. The simulations also include thermal stress development due to the heat of hydration. In case 70 kg/m3 of internal curing water is provided via the SAP, an optimal reduction of the cracking risk is noticed, mainly caused by the autogenous shrinkage reduction and the appearing expansive deformation peak directly after setting takes place. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Derboven J.,Future Health | De Roeck D.,Artesis University College of Antwerp | Verstraete M.,Future Health
International Journal of Human Computer Studies | Year: 2012

Although multi-touch applications and user interfaces have become increasingly common in the last few years, there is no agreed-upon multi-touch user interface language yet. In order to gain a deeper understanding of the design of multi-touch user interfaces, this paper presents semiotic analysis of multi-touch applications as an interesting approach to gain deeper understanding of the way users use and understand multi-touch interfaces. In a case study example, user tests of a multi-touch tabletop application platform called MuTable are analysed with the Communicability Evaluation Method to evaluate to what extent users understand the intended messages (e.g., cues about interaction and functionality) the MuTable platform communicates. The semiotic analysis of this case study shows that although multi-touch interfaces can facilitate user exploration, the lack of well-known standards in multi-touch interface design and in the use of gestures makes the user interface difficult to use and interpret. This conclusion points to the importance of the elusive balance between letting users explore multi-touch systems on their own on one hand, and guiding users, explaining how to use and interpret the user interface, on the other. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.

Cools A.M.J.,Ghent University | Struyf F.,Artesis University College of Antwerp | De Mey K.,Ghent University | Maenhout A.,Ghent University | And 2 more authors.
British Journal of Sports Medicine | Year: 2014

The scapula functions as a bridge between the shoulder complex and the cervical spine and plays a very important role in providing both mobility and stability of the neck/shoulder region. The association between abnormal scapular positions and motions and glenohumeral joint pathology has been well established in the literature, whereas studies investigating the relationship between neck pain and scapular dysfunction have only recently begun to emerge. Although several authors have emphasised the relevance of restoring normal scapular kinematics through exercise and manual therapy techniques, overall scapular rehabilitation guidelines decent for both patients with shoulder pain as well as patients with neck problems are lacking. The purpose of this paper is to provide a science-based clinical reasoning algorithm with practical guidelines for the rehabilitation of scapular dyskinesis in patients with chronic complaints in the upper quadrant.

Struyf F.,University of Antwerp | Nijs J.,Vrije Universiteit Brussel | Meeus M.,Ghent University | Roussel N.A.,University of Antwerp | And 3 more authors.
International Journal of Sports Medicine | Year: 2014

The objective of this prospective study is to investigate possible scapular related risk factors for developing shoulder pain. Therefore, a 2-year follow-up study in a general community sports centre setting was conducted. A sample of convenience of 113 recreational overhead athletes (59 women and 54 men) with a mean age of 34 (17-64; SD 12) years were recruited. At baseline, visual observation for scapular dyskinesis, measured scapular protraction, upward scapular rotation and dynamic scapular control were evaluated. 22% (n=25) of all athletes developed shoulder pain during the 24 months following baseline assessment. The Mean Shoulder Disability Questionnaire (SDQ) score for the painful shoulders was 34.8 (6.3-62.5; SD 17.4). None of the scapular characteristics predicted the development of shoulder pain. However, the athletes that developed shoulder pain demonstrated significantly less upward scapular rotation at 45° (p=0.010) and 90° (p=0.016) of shoulder abduction in the frontal plane at baseline in comparison to the athletes that remained pain-free. In conclusion, although these scapular characteristics are not of predictive value for the development of shoulder pain, this study increases our understanding of the importance of a scapular upward rotation assessment among recreational overhead athletes. © Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart - New York.

Van Rompaey B.,University of Antwerp | Van Rompaey B.,Artesis University College of Antwerp | Elseviers M.M.,University of Antwerp | Van Drom W.,University of Antwerp | And 2 more authors.
Critical Care | Year: 2012

Introduction: This study hypothesised that a reduction of sound during the night using earplugs could be beneficial in the prevention of intensive care delirium. Two research questions were formulated. First, does the use of earplugs during the night reduce the onset of delirium or confusion in the ICU? Second, does the use of earplugs during the night improve the quality of sleep in the ICU?Methods: A randomized clinical trial included adult intensive care patients in an intervention group of 69 patients sleeping with earplugs during the night and a control group of 67 patients sleeping without earplugs during the night. The researchers were blinded during data collection. Assignment was performed by an independent nurse researcher using a computer program. Eligible patients had an expected length of stay in the ICU of more than 24 hours, were Dutch- or English-speaking and scored a minimum Glasgow Coma Scale of 10. Delirium was assessed using the validated NEECHAM scale, sleep perception was reported by the patient in response to five questions.Results: The use of earplugs during the night lowered the incidence of confusion in the studied intensive care patients. A vast improvement was shown by a Hazard Ratio of 0.47 (95% confidence interval (CI) 0.27 to 0.82). Also, patients sleeping with earplugs developed confusion later than the patients sleeping without earplugs. After the first night in the ICU, patients sleeping with earplugs reported a better sleep perception.Conclusions: Earplugs may be a useful instrument in the prevention of confusion or delirium. The beneficial effects seem to be strongest within 48 hours after admission. The relation between sleep, sound and delirium, however, needs further research.Trial registration: Current Controlled Trials ISRCTN36198138. © 2012 Van Rompaey et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

Buyle M.,Artesis University College of Antwerp | Braet J.,University of Antwerp | Audenaert A.,Artesis University College of Antwerp
Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews | Year: 2013

The last decades, lowering the ecological impact of buildings is receiving increased attention by researchers, policy-makers and companies. Mostly the focus is on reducing energy consumption and the use of eco-friendly materials, but the concept of life-cycle thinking is growing in importance. This paper tries to give an overview of the current situation of Life cycle assessment (LCA) in the construction industry, both of regulatory developments and academic case studies. After a short history of LCA, the focus is on LCA methodology, new standards and frameworks and an extensive selection of recent case studies. Despite some inherent limitations of LCA as an analytic tool and fundamental differences between the individual cases, still some common trends can be indicated. In standard buildings, the use phase contributes up to 90% of the total environmental burdens, mainly due to heating and/or cooling. Due to regulations, new buildings become more energy efficient, and thereby other phases of the life cycle gain in importance e.g., choice of materials, construction, end-of-life and water use. These research topics deserve more attention, together with economic issues, the improvement of data quality and implementation of probability density distributions. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.

Corremans J.A.M.,Artesis University College of Antwerp
Journal of Engineering Design | Year: 2011

This article presents a 'hands-on' method, targeted towards freshmen product development (or industrial design or engineering design), to create basic form alternatives. The hypothesis that the knowledge and the application of a rational form-generation approach improve the ability to create more and more varied designs is verified by means of an experiment. In this experiment, the effectiveness of the initiated method was measured by comparing the results of a first design session (before initiation of the method) with the results of a second design session (after initiation). The outcome shows definite progress in the basic skills to generate form alternatives: after the initiation, subjects generate more proposals with more variation in surface composition. Parameters like the overall amount of design solutions and the evolution in the variation in surface composition were considered. The experiment indicates that the application of a method can enhance a design process and shows that an analytical and rational approach contributes to the basic skills in the study of form. The two-step manipulation method extends the repertory of possible tools and methods that a designer can implement to cope with the problems concerning the creation of form alternatives. © 2011 Taylor & Francis.

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