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The advantage is that the body locations are so familiar that the individual control elements can be operated even with one's eyes shut. In addition, they enable a completely new type of interaction, and also allow for a natural way to provide operating instructions. That the human body represents an excellent touch-sensitive input surface for mobile devices was shown by the Saarbrücken computer scientists as early as 2015. Together with researchers from Carnegie Mellon University in the US, they used flexible silicone and conductive electronic sensors to develop "iSkin", touch-sensitive stickers for the skin. When attached on the forearm and connected to a smartphone, the sticker could be touched in order to take a call or change the volume of a song being played. However, this process was suitable only for certain body locations, because it required a relatively flat surface. Moreover, the stickers were comparatively large. "We wanted to focus on body locations where no interaction had been possible before. But placing electronics precisely on the skin, let alone fitting them onto bony structures like the knuckles or microstructures like wrinkles, is very complicated," explains Martin Weigel, PhD student of Jürgen Steimle, professor of human-computer interaction at Saarland University. But the researchers were also convinced that this would be worthwhile for users. "When you have to press on the first knuckle of your left hand, you know very intuitively where it is. The same goes for the inside of the index finger," Weigel adds. Together with Alex Olwal from Google, his colleague Aditya Shekhar Nittala and Professor Jürgen Steimle, Weigel tinkered with the right combinations of conductive inks and printing processes, in order to print the conductive traces and the electrodes as compactly and thinly as possible on the temporary tattoo paper. After several tests the breakthrough finally came. A conductive plastic named PEDOT:PSS was the solution. With this, the researchers could print the tattoo to be thinner than a hair's breadth, and therefore they could ensure that it would not only fit onto knuckles and wrinkles, but also be so flexible that it could withstand compression and stretching. The researchers named the electronic tattoos SkinMarks. They are applied on the skin with water, and they come back off after a few days. In the laboratory, the scientists need only 30 to 60 minutes to print such a tattoo. "This could even be speeded up. We are convinced that in the future, everyone will be able to make their own e-tattoo in less than a minute on a standard, commercially available printer," explains Professor Jürgen Steimle. With the prototypes, the researchers also tested new input forms. Each e-tattoo was connected via a conductive copper tape to an Arduino mini-computer placed near the body. In this way, for example, an e-tattoo was attached on the inside of the index finger. If the finger is extended, the wearer could swipe the tattoo with another finger to adjust the volume of a music player. If the finger is bent, then pressing on one of the three segments would stop the current song, or skip to the previous or next one. During their experiments the researchers identified four classes of suitable orientation points on the body. Among these, they also used accumulations of pigment-forming cells. On a liver spot of a participant, they attached a heart-shaped tattoo. If an electric voltage is applied, it lights up in blue. "Linked to the corresponding smartphone app, it could light up when the loved person is available," Steimle explains the application, adding: "Touching the heart then begins a call."

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ENV.2013.6.2-2 | Award Amount: 16.30M | Year: 2013

SOLUTIONS will deliver a conceptual framework for the evidence-based development of environmental and water policies. This will integrate innovative chemical and effect-based monitoring tools with a full set of exposure, effect and risk models and assessment options. Uniquely, SOLUTIONS taps (i) expertise of leading European scientists of major FP6/FP7 projects on chemicals in the water cycle, (ii) access to the infrastructure necessary to investigate the large basins of Danube and Rhine as well as relevant Mediterranean basins as case studies, and (iii) innovative approaches for stakeholder dialogue and support. In particular, International River Commissions, EC working groups and water works associations will be directly supported with consistent guidance for the early detection, identification, prioritization, and abatement of chemicals in the water cycle. A user-friendly tool providing access to a set of predictive models will support stakeholders to improve management decisions, benefiting from the wealth of data generated from monitoring and chemical registration. SOLUTIONS will give a specific focus on concepts and tools for the impact and risk assessment of complex mixtures of emerging pollutants, their metabolites and transformation products. Analytical and effect-based screening tools will be applied together with ecological assessment tools for the identification of toxicants and their impacts. Beyond state-of-the-art monitoring and management tools will be elaborated allowing risk identification for aquatic ecosystems and human health. The SOLUTIONS approach will provide transparent and evidence-based lists of River Basin Specific Pollutants for the case study basins and support the review of the list of WFD priority pollutants.

Atanassov K.,Bulgarian Academy of Science | Atanassov K.,University Professor Dr. Assen Zlatarov Burgas
Knowledge-Based Systems | Year: 2015

The Intuitionistic Fuzzy Sets (IFSs), proposed in 1983, are extensions of fuzzy sets. Some years after their introduction, sequentially, intuitionistic fuzzy propositional logic, intuitionistic fuzzy predicate logic, intuitionistic fuzzy modal logic and intuitionistic fuzzy temporal logic have been introduced, presented here shortly. During the last 25 years, different intuitionistic fuzzy tools have been used for evaluation of objects from the area of the Artificial Intelligence, as expert systems (having, e.g. facts and rules, with intuitionistic fuzzy degrees of validity and non-validity), decision making processes (having, e.g. intuitionistic fuzzy estimations of the criteria), neural networks, pattern recognitions, metaheuristic algorithms, etc. Short review of these legs of research is offered, with some concrete ideas of possible new directions of study. On this basis, a non-formal discussion is raised on the benefits of applying various elements of intuitionistic fuzzy logics as tools for evaluation of Data Mining processes. © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Krastanov A.,University of Food Technologies | Alexieva Z.,Bulgarian Academy of Science | Yemendzhiev H.,University Professor Dr. Assen Zlatarov Burgas
Engineering in Life Sciences | Year: 2013

Phenol and its derivatives are one of the largest groups of environmental pollutants due to their presence in many industrial effluents and broad application as antibacterial and antifungal agents. A number of microbial species possess enzyme systems that are applicable for the decomposition of various aliphatic and aromatic toxic compounds. Intensive efforts to screen species with high-degradation activity are needed to study their capabilities of degrading phenol and phenolic derivatives. Most of the current research has been directed at the isolation and study of microbial species of potential ecological significance. In this review, some of the best achievements in degrading phenolic compounds by bacteria and yeasts are presented, which draws attention to the high efficiency of strains of Pseudomonas, Candida tropicalis, Trichosporon cutaneum, etc. The unique ability of fungi to maintain their degradation potential under conditions unfavorable for other microorganisms is outstanding. Mathematical models of the microbial biodegradation dynamics of single and mixed aromatic compounds, which direct to the benefit of the processes studied in optimization of modern environmental biotechnology are also presented. © 2012 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

Kirova-Yordanova Z.,University Professor Dr. Assen Zlatarov Burgas
Energy | Year: 2011

In this work the exergy method is used to compare various methods for removal of NO. x from waste (tail) gas released into the atmosphere from nitric acid production plants with respect to their overall environmental impact. Three basic methods for NO. x abatement are analysed: selective catalytic reduction (SCR), non-selective catalytic reduction (NSCR) and extended absorption. The positive and negative effects and the net effect from the NO. x abatement are calculated. The following exergy-based indicators are used for comparing the energy efficiency and the environmental impact of different treatment processes as a result from pollutants removal: reduction of the exergy of the emissions from the whole process route (ammonia and nitric acid production units); exergy of the additional emissions, arising as a result of the treatment process; total net reduction of the exergy consumption, Cumulative Energy Consumption (CEnC) and Cumulative Exergy Consumption (CExC) of natural resources as a result of the waste flows treatment. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.

Kirova-Yordanova Z.,University Professor Dr. Assen Zlatarov Burgas
Energy | Year: 2010

The exergy method is used to compare different production processes and various methods for emission abatement with respect to their overall environmental impact. Some ammonium nitrate production processes are studied as examples, because the pollutants (ammonia and ammonium nitrate), emitted from these processes into the air and/or into the water, are really a feedstock and a product from the production process. Therefore, the essential result of the waste flows treatment is the recycling of the pollutants (ammonia and ammonium nitrate) back into the production process, decreasing simultaneously the exergy input and cumulative exergy consumption. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.

Risselada A.J.,University Professor Dr. Assen Zlatarov Burgas
Nederlands tijdschrift voor geneeskunde | Year: 2013

The introduction of the new oral anticoagulant drugs (NOACs) has recently been paid much attention. The main advantage of these drugs is that routine monitoring of the anticoagulant effects does not seem necessary. A 53-year-old man who had just undergone partial knee arthroplasty went to the emergency department with shortness of breath and respiratory chest pain. The symptoms arose the day after thromboprophylaxis was switched from dalteparin 5000 IU QD to rivaroxaban 10 mg QD. The patient also used carbamazepine 600 mg BID for epilepsy. Based on a CT scan the patient was diagnosed with pulmonary embolisms. Use of carbamazepine, a CYP3A4 inducer, probably led to an increased clearance of rivaroxaban resulting in pulmonary embolisms. We encourage monitoring of the anticoagulant effects of NOACs in case of drug-drug interactions, especially when NOACs are given in higher doses for a long period, in order to prevent treatment complications.

Koleva Y.K.,University Professor Dr. Assen Zlatarov Burgas
Oxidation Communications | Year: 2012

QSAR models based on a narcosis mechanism represent baseline (minimum) toxicity which can be applied for defining excess toxicity of reactive chemicals and their interpreted in terms of the Michael addition mechanistic domain. The aim of the researching was to make an attempt to form mechanistic category for mammalian acute toxicity with regard to their excess toxicity based on baseline acute toxicity model for rat with route of administration oral and an attempt to be applied quantitative and mechanistic read-across using an electrophilicity index (ω) for the Michael acceptors. This study demonstrates the ability of the electrophilicity index (ω) to be used as a measure of similarity for reactive chemicals acting through the Michael addition mechanism. Predictions were made for 15 chemicals for rat within the Michael acceptor domain, with the majority being in good agreement with the experimentally determined values. The mechanism-based read-across is a powerful, transparent, mechanistically interpretable methodology suitable to make computational predictions as part of an intelligent testing strategy.

Kirova-Yordanova Z.,University Professor Dr. Assen Zlatarov Burgas
Proceedings of the 25th International Conference on Efficiency, Cost, Optimization and Simulation of Energy Conversion Systems and Processes, ECOS 2012 | Year: 2012

The nitrogen fertilizers production is an energy intensive industry branch. However, from a thermodynamic point of view, the basic reactions of the nitrogen fertilizers production processes are exothermic and the overall reactions of both process routes (ammonium nitrate and urea production routes) are also exothermic. This means that, if all these reactions could be performed in a thermodynamically ideal way and at the reference conditions, some heat and/or power could be obtained from these reactions, rather than consumed. However, most of the reaction stages are limited by the chemical equilibrium and reaction's kinetics, which require high pressures and temperatures, hence, big quantities of shaft power and heat (steam) have to be consumed. In modern energy-integrated ammonia and nitric acid plants the heat of the exothermic chemical reactions is used to generate mechanical work (by a steam cycle or/and by a gas turbine cycle) to drive compressors and other machinery. If needed, an extra amount of fuel is burned to satisfy all the requirements of energy in the plant itself and/or in the overall fertilizers production complex. The problem is whether it would be more effective to burn some quantity of fuel to provide a chemical plant with power and/or steam in the energy-integrated chemical plant itself; in an utility boiler or in a CHP plant at the same industrial site. The goal of this work is to analyse the efficiency of the energy integration in a nitrogen fertilizers production site, including ammonia and nitric acid plants. The main issue is how to distinguish the technological and energy conversion processes in order to estimate their efficiencies separately despite the strong integration of these processes and the complexity of modern energy-integrated chemical plants. The approach presented in this work is to define a model of the ammonia production process that enables specifying separately the theoretical minimum of energy and feedstock consumption in the chemical process and in the energy conversion processes (especially shaft work generation). Then, using real data for efficiency indices of both groups of processes, the next step is to examine the influence of these indices on the energy (and exergy) consumption and to specify the sets of parameters corresponding to the more efficient kind of plant, energy integrated or non-integrated, respectively. In Part 1 of this work, ammonia production plants are selected as a subject of analysis.

Wiens and University Professor Dr. Assen Zlatarov Burgas | Date: 2010-11-10

The invention concerns the application of silintaphin-1 in the sustainable fabrication of hierarchically ordered silica structures from nano- to macro-scale at environmentally benign conditions and low energy costs (low temperature, low pressure, absence of caustic chemicals).

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