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Almutairi Z.M.,University of the Humanities
Czech Journal of Genetics and Plant Breeding | Year: 2017

Silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) have been shown to enhance seed germination and plant growth. In this study, we examined the plant response to AgNP dosage using a model plant, Arabidopsis thaliana. Seedlings were treated with different concentrations of AgNPs. Seedling fresh and dry weights were measured for all treatments. The exposure of plants to 1 mg/l AgNPs resulted in a significant increase in seedling fresh and dry weights compared with control plants, although the exposure to lower and higher concentrations resulted in a decrease in fresh and dry weights. Expression profiling for 22 MADS-box genes was carried out using quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR). Among the investigated MADS-box genes, eight genes were upregulated and four genes were downregulated at each of the AgNP concentrations, 0.1 and 1 mg/l. Revealing the effects of AgNPs on the expression of MADS-box genes will increase our knowledge of their role before implementing a large-scale agricultural utilization of AgNPs in the improvement of plant growth and development. © 2017, Czech Academy of Agricultural Sciences. All rights reserved.


Dinu S.,University of the Humanities
Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering | Year: 2016

Partitioning is one of the biggest challenges in computer-aided design for VLSI circuits (very large-scale integrated circuits). This work address the min-cut balanced circuit partitioning problem- dividing the graph that models the circuit into almost equal sized k sub-graphs while minimizing the number of edges cut i.e. minimizing the number of edges connecting the sub-graphs. The problem may be formulated as a combinatorial optimization problem. Experimental studies in the literature have shown the problem to be NP-hard and thus it is important to design an efficient heuristic algorithm to solve it. The approach proposed in this study is a parallel implementation of a genetic algorithm, namely an island model. The information exchange between the evolving subpopulations is modeled using a fuzzy controller, which determines an optimal balance between exploration and exploitation of the solution space. The results of simulations show that the proposed algorithm outperforms the standard sequential genetic algorithm both in terms of solution quality and convergence speed. As a direction for future study, this research can be further extended to incorporate local search operators which should include problem-specific knowledge. In addition, the adaptive configuration of mutation and crossover rates is another guidance for future research. © 2016 SPIE.


Cosker D.,University of Bath | Krumhuber E.,University of the Humanities | Hilton A.,University of Surrey
Proceedings of the IEEE International Conference on Computer Vision | Year: 2011

This paper presents the first dynamic 3D FACS data set for facial expression research, containing 10 subjects performing between 19 and 97 different AUs both individually and in combination. In total the corpus contains 519 AU sequences. The peak expression frame of each sequence has been manually FACS coded by certified FACS experts. This provides a ground truth for 3D FACS based AU recognition systems. In order to use this data, we describe the first framework for building dynamic 3D morphable models. This includes a novel Active Appearance Model (AAM) based 3D facial registration and mesh correspondence scheme. The approach overcomes limitations in existing methods that require facial markers or are prone to optical flow drift. We provide the first quantitative assessment of such 3D facial mesh registration techniques and show how our proposed method provides more reliable correspondence. © 2011 IEEE.


Farajzadeh H.,University of the Humanities | Matzarakis A.,Albert Ludwigs University of Freiburg
Theoretical and Applied Climatology | Year: 2012

Research in developing countries concerning the relationship of weather and climate conditions with tourism shows a high importance not only because of financial aspects but also an important part of the region's tourism resource base. Monthly mean air temperature, relative humidity, precipitation, vapor pressure, wind velocity, and cloud cover for the period 1985-2005 data collected from four meteorological stations Tabriz, Maragheh, Orumieh, and Khoy were selected. The purpose of this study is to determine the most suitable months for human thermal comfort in Ourmieh Lake, a salt sea in the northwest of Iran. To achieve this, the cooling power and physiologically equivalent temperature (PET) calculated by the RayMan model and the Climate Tourism/Transfer Information Scheme (CTIS) were used. The results based on cooling power indicate that the most favorable period for tourism, sporting, and recreational activities in Ourmieh Lake is between June and October and based on PET between June to September. In addition, the CTIS shows a detailed quantification of the relevant climate-tourism factors. © 2011 The Author(s).


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP-SICA | Phase: SSH.2013.4.1-1 | Award Amount: 2.04M | Year: 2014

ISSICEU analyses sources of stability and instability in the Caucasus regarding political regimes, civic participation, economic interdependencies and neighbourhood influences. We evaluate the implications for military, political, economic and societal security. We deliver three relevant products for EU policy formulation: We analyse and map emerging conflicts of local, regional and international dimensions and highlight crucial actors and mechanisms. We elaborate on scenarios concerning potential future security developments. We give concise policy recommendations on opportunities for the EU to influence conflict solution and long-term stability in the Caucasus societies and the whole region. ISSICEU disseminates the findings as follows: policy briefs; expert workshops in relevant EU agencies and for stakeholders in EU countries and the Caucasus; a scenario-workshop at the final stage. ISSICEU explores intra-societal frictions and their regional impact in the political regimes focussing mainly on dynamics of communal governance; the interplay of religious and state actors and practices of civic participation. We analyse inter-societal sources of (in)stability regarding economic dependencies; political and societal relations between the Caucasus and neighbourhood states. ISSICEU makes comparative analyses across sub-regions and studies aspects of inter-societal relations. We consider the historical and contemporary ties among the societies. We study the Caucasus in its diversity and cohesiveness. Cases are Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Abkhazia, South Ossetia, Nagorno-Karabakh, Dagestan, Kabardino-Balkaria, Karachay-Cherkessia and Chechnya. In the neighbourhood we focus on Turkey and Iran. ISSICEU takes theory-informed, interdisciplinary and strongly inductive approaches, able to adequately identify phenomena as they manifest themselves in the region and to give innovative policy recommendations.


Hagger M.S.,Curtin University Australia | Luszczynska A.,University of Colorado at Colorado Springs | Luszczynska A.,University of the Humanities
Applied Psychology: Health and Well-Being | Year: 2014

The purpose of this paper is to provide an overview of the literature on two planning intervention techniques in health behaviour research, implementation intentions and action planning, and to develop evidence-based recommendations for effective future interventions and highlight priority areas for future research. We focused our review on four key areas: (1) definition and conceptualisation; (2) format and measurement; (3) mechanisms and processes; and (4) design issues. Overall, evidence supports the effectiveness of planning interventions in health behaviour with advantages including low cost and response burden. There is, however, considerable heterogeneity in the effects across studies and relatively few registered randomised trials that include objective behavioural measures. Optimally effective planning interventions should adopt "if-then" plans, account for salient and relevant cues, include examples of cues, be guided rather than user-defined, and include boosters. Future studies should adopt randomised controlled designs, report study protocols, include fidelity checks and relevant comparison groups, and adopt long-term behavioural follow-up measures. Priority areas for future research include the identification of the moderators and mediators of planning intervention effects. Future research also needs to adopt "best practice" components of planning interventions more consistently to elucidate the mechanisms and processes involved. © 2013 The International Association of Applied Psychology.


Chopra G.,University of the Humanities | Pal A.K.,University of the Humanities
IEEE Transactions on Image Processing | Year: 2011

Geometric wavelet is a recent development in the field of multivariate nonlinear piecewise polynomials approximation. The present study improves the geometric wavelet (GW) image coding method by using the slope intercept representation of the straight line in the binary space partition scheme. The performance of the proposed algorithm is compared with the wavelet transform-based compression methods such as the embedded zerotree wavelet (EZW), the set partitioning in hierarchical trees (SPIHT) and the embedded block coding with optimized truncation (EBCOT), and other recently developed sparse geometric representation based compression algorithms. The proposed image compression algorithm outperforms the EZW, the Bandelets and the GW algorithm. The presented algorithm reports a gain of 0.22 dB over the GW method at the compression ratio of 64 for the Cameraman test image. © 2010 IEEE.


Pettersen S.A.,Regional Center for Sport | Mathisen G.E.,University of the Humanities
Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research | Year: 2012

2012-There are limited data on how coordinative sprint drills and maximal short burst activities affects children's sprint and agility performance. The purpose of the present study was to investigate the effect of short burst activities on sprint and agility performance in 11- to 12-year-old boys. A training group (TG) of 14 boys followed a 6-week, 1-hour-week 21, training program consisting of different short burst competitive sprinting activities. Eleven boys of similar age served as controls (control group [CG]). Pre- and posttests assessed 10-m sprint, 20-m sprint, and agility performance. Results revealed significant performance improvement in all tests within TG (p< 0.05), but not between TG and CG in the 10-m sprint test. Furthermore, the relationships between the performances in straight-line sprint and agility showed a significant transfer effect (r = 0.68-0.75, p< 0.001). Findings from the present study indicate that competitive short burst activities executed with maximal effort may produce improvement in sprint and agility performance in 11- to 12-year-old boys. © 2012 National Strength and Conditioning Association.


Wu C.,University of the Humanities
Journal of Polymer Science, Part B: Polymer Physics | Year: 2016

Local dynamics of single poly(ethylene oxide) chain in various environments (bulk, film, and isolated systems) has been characterized by the reorientation functions of various backbone bond vectors. Within any observation time, the variations of these reorientation functions with the temperature can be well described by the Kohlrausch-Williams-Watts (KWW) like equation, in which the fitted temperature parameter is identified as the glass transition temperature (Tg). The so-obtained Tg for that polymer faithfully reveals the effects of the observation time, chain flexibility and vector range on the local dynamics. Furthermore, it is found that the KWW like relation is also applicable to the temperature-dependence of the fraction of frozen atoms or torsions defined by the trajectory radii of gyration or the conformational transitions. Consequently, different motions lead to different values of Tg for the same system. Despite all, the consistent trend can be yielded, namely, Tg (bulk)>Tg (film)>Tg (isolated), which captures the effects of free surfaces on enhanced dynamics. In addition, dynamics heterogeneity in the systems can be quantitatively revealed. The newly proposed method holds a bright promise to predict the Tg values of complex polymers especially for comparisons. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.


This paper constellates two post-Abu-Ghraib cinematic texts, John Cassar's 24: Redemption (2008) and Gavin Hood's Rendition (2007), and examines how they manage national anxieties of shame and complicity through geopolitically determined displays of compassion. Collectively, these films depict good white citizens of the world who reconcile the disillusioned viewer to the national family by feeling for racialized subjects in pain. Scrutinizing the familial aesthetics that structure both texts, I consider what normative conditions must first be met in order for the racialized subject to be included in the national family and, more expansively, the human family on which the prohibitions against torture are predicated. Following Judith Butler's argument in Frames of War that 'the human' is a norm that can be enunciated or silenced, I map the selective admission of scenes of suffering into the ethico-political visual horizon of the US and argue that their admission or emergence assuages the shame of the post-Abu-Ghraib viewer while obfuscating the US's war crimes. © 2011 Pion Ltd and its Licensors.

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