• E-readiness in construction (ERiC): self-assessment framework for UK small and medium enterprise building services providers

      Goulding, Jack; Lou, Eric; Lee, Angela (Taylor & Francis, 2019-05-28)
      The construction industry’s ability to innovate in order to improve its practices has been widely debated. As organisations in other sectors globally are addressing technology challenges, is the UK construction industry e-ready? Of particular concern is the plethora of small and medium enterprises (SME) that constitute over 80% of the UK construction industry. There are noticeable SME laggards in the uptake of new processes and technologies. This paper aims to assess the e-readiness levels of UK SME building services provider in order to leverage the advantages of technology opportunities in the future. The resultant self-assessment ERiC framework enables SMEs to quantify and measure e-readiness from an organisation, technical and process perspective.
    • Early availability of laboratory results increases same day ward discharge rates

      Cornes, MP; Danks, G; Elgaddal, S; Jawad, M; Tonks, J; Ries, E; Ford, C; Gama, R; Department of Clinical Biochemistry, Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, Worcestershire, United Kingdom of Great Britain and NorthernIreland, Phone: +01905 760843. (Walter de Gruyter GmbH, 2018-06-20)
      © 2018 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston. Delayed discharge reduces hospital efficiency and inconveniences patients. Most hospitals discharge in the afternoon, whereas the most common admission time is mid-morning. Consequently, new patients wait for the beds of patients who are fit to be discharged. Earlier discharge may, therefore, improve patient flow. We investigated the impact of early phlebotomy with early availability of laboratory results on patient discharge rates and discharge time. Discharge rates, discharge time and sample turnaround time were assessed before (1 October 2014 to 31 December 2014) and after (1 October 2015 to 31 December 2015) introduction of earlier phlebotomy with availability of laboratory results prior to the ward rounds on two surgical wards. Following the intervention, over 95% of results were available before 8:30 am in 2015 as compared to less than 1% in 2014. Specimen turnaround times were similar in both study periods. Even after adjustment for age, gender, admission type and length of admission, the same day discharge rate was higher in 2015 compared to 2014 (60% vs. 52%; p<0.002), but time of discharge was unchanged. Early availability of blood results prior to ward rounds increased ward discharges but did not affect discharge time.
    • Early perceptions of allowing adjudication of oral contracts

      Charlson, Jennifer; Baldwin, Robert; Harrison, Jamie (Emerald, 2014-10-07)
      The purpose of this paper is to consider the implications of the admission of oral contracts to statutory adjudication proceedings. A major criticism of the Housing Grants, Construction and Regeneration Act 1996 (“HGCRA 1996”) was that Section 107 required contracts to be “in writing” for the parties to be able to use statutory adjudication. In response, the Local Democracy, Economic Development and Construction Act 2009 repealed Section 107 of the HGCRA 1996. This paper considers the implications of the admission of oral contracts to statutory adjudication proceedings, whereby adjudicators’ may now have to determine the exact nature of oral agreements. The critical literature review has highlighted that there is a perceived risk that, by allowing oral contracts to be decided through adjudication, there could be an increased risk of injustice (as the adjudicator may have to decide oral testimony about contract formation). Adjudicators may now have to determine the exact nature of oral agreements. The critical literature review has highlighted that there is a perceived risk that by allowing oral contracts to be decided through adjudication there could be an increased risk of injustice (as the adjudicator may have to decide oral testimony about contract formation).
    • Economics of gas to wire technology applied in gas flare management

      Ojijiagwo, Emeka; Oduoza, Chike F.; Emekwuru, Nwabueze (Elsevier B V, 2016-09-26)
      Our environment is increasingly being endangered by the introduction of greenhouse gases which are continuously produced from gas flaring processes. Currently, total volume of gas flared globally amounts to 100 billion cubic meters (BCM) annually. Nigeria flares about 18.27 BCM and loses approximately $2 billion yearly. This statistics indicates the urgent need to conduct research aimed at addressing both the environmental impact of gas flaring and the economic implications. This research studies the economic viability of using gas to wire (GTW) technology as an integral component of gas flare management. The investigation critically evaluates the cost implications and impact of the GTW technology. The research method involves the interview of key experts and practitioners in the field. The interviews are structured to obtain information on the total volume of gas produced, utilised and flared in two major gas and electricity producing firms in Nigeria. The data obtained show that the gas producing company flares about 8.33% of its total production which is in excess of the 6.6 million cubic meters (MCM) utilised daily. This study demonstrates that in the Nigerian oil and gas sector, one unit of gas turbine having 0.93 MCM gas consumption capacity generates 150 MW of electricity daily. It is found in result evaluation that 50 turbines are sufficient to consume an average of 46.5 MCM of gas daily to generate 7500 MW of electricity. Economic analysis shows that there is an annual net profit of £2.68 billion gained from flare prevention and overall environmental protection.
    • Editorial in Special Issue on "Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC) Sector Role to Urbanise India"

      Ahuja, Vanitha; Subashini, Suresh (Journal of Construction in Developing Countries, 2017-12)
    • Education case study reports reflection on teaching strategies for pharmacy students

      Morrissey, Hana; Ball, Patrick (FIP, 2017-12-31)
      Introduction: Teaching should meet the needs of all types of learner present in the class room; the activist, the reflector, the theorist and the pragmatist who also have diverse backgrounds, levels of education and are from different age groups. Aim: The aim of the four projects was to improve students’ engagement and success. Method: New teaching strategies were trialled to improve students’ engagement and successes with topics which according to their feedback were considered ‘dry’. The author utilised techniques such as flipping the class-room, simulation, case or problem based learning; and group work replacing traditional lectures. First, third and fourth year students were asked to prepare for the in-class activities at home using the lectures or simulation software. Results: The strategies were effective in a small class size of 15-20 students, with improved attendance and participation, improved fail/pass rate and number of students achieving credit or pass; however there was no significant change in the number of students achieving high distinction or distinction. Evaluation: Reproducibility is an important part of the experiment to demonstrate that the results can be trusted. Success with one or two cohorts is not sufficient to adopt a method of teaching. Ongoing evaluation is essential to eliminate cohort-related effects prior to implementation. It is not clear if the achieved results would be achievable in larger classes due to the reduction in student: lecturer ratio and limitation of class room time to allow all students to participate.
    • EduChain: CIA-Compliant Block-chain forIntelligent Cyber Defense of Microservices inEducation Industry 4.0

      Rahman, Md Arafatur; Abuludin, Mohd Saharudin; Yuan, Ling Xi; Islam, Md Shohidul; Asyhari, A Taufiq (IEEE, 2021-06-29)
      Massive data handling requirement in education industry 4.0 has attracted interests in the research of microservice architectures due to their scalability, resilience and elasticity characteristics. This development has been challenged by extensive data exchange required by a set of independent microservices tobuilda complete application, which could resultin increasing risksandexposuretothe securityand privacy breaches of the data. It is imperative to see that educational data are highly sensitive, critical for ascertaining educational attainment and facilitating credentials for qualifcation verifcations. This paper puts forward a new proposal of devising a security and privacy-preserving design mechanism of data transactions in educational microservices leveraging the blockchain technology. The design comprises three phases, namely the blockchain framework, data sending-receiving and confdentiality-integrity-availability over a secured platform with each phase having detailed mechanisms for algorithm implementation. The proposal is shown to exhibit favourable performance in terms of time cost of publishing, throughput and latency, and shown to have high surveyacceptance in terms of confdentiality, integrity and availability with approximately 10% improvement from prior blockchain adoption.
    • Effect of air turbulence on gas transport in soil; comparison of approaches

      Pourbakhtiar, Alireza; Papadikis, K; Poulsen, T G; Bridge, J W; Wilkinson, Stephen (Geophysical Research Abstracts, 2017-05-31)
      Geophysical Research Abstracts (GRA) is the conference series publishing the abstracts accepted for the General Assemblies of the European Geosciences Union (EGU). It links the annual conference programmes listing programme groups, included sessions, and their contributions. The abstracts underwent an access review by the session conveners.
    • Effect of blending conditions on the tabletting performance of paracetamol–polyvinylpyrrolidone mixture

      Kaialy, Waseem; Rose, Ayuk Agbor (sciForum, 2016-09)
      Monoclinic paracetamol is notorious as a poorly compactible model drug that exhibits reduced plastic deformation, resulting in fragile tablets with high capping tendency during tabletting. Polyvinylpyrrolidone is a polymer that can act as effective additive to improve the stability and physicomechanical properties of paracetamol, since it could adsorb onto the surfaces of paracetamol crystals via hydrogen bonding. It is surprising however that the role of blending process on paracetamol–polyvinylpyrrolidone (PA–PVP) interactions and the tableting performance of PA–PVP mixture is ignored in many studies. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to investigate the influence of blending conditions of the physicochemical and mechanical properties of PA–PVP mixtures (95:5, w:w). PA–PVP mixtures were prepared using low shear (using V–shaped mixer for 30 min), medium shear (hand blending for 10 min), and dry high shear (Tefal high speed blender, Berkshire, UK, for 1 min) blending conditions. The high shear blender consists of two faced flat knife-like blades (6.5 cm × 1.5 cm) rotating at ~500 rpm in a bowel of 186 cm2). The results showed that all PA–PVP mixtures demonstrated improved tabletting compared to commercial paracetamol, regardless of the blending method. PA–PVP mixtures processed using high shear blending conditions demonstrated the best compactibility at a range of compaction pressures. For example, the mixtures processed using lower shear, medium shear and high shear blending conditions produced tablets with tensile strengths of 0.37 MPa, 0.38 MPa, and 1.36 MPa respectively. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy analysis showed that, with the increase in blending shear, there was a reduction in absorption intensities (i.e. increased band broadening) between 3150 cm-1 and 3250 cm-1 compared to the sharp peak observed with the commercial drug. This could be due to the higher level of hydrogen bond interaction obtained in the PA–PVP mixture processed by high shear blending in comparison to the mixtures processed by low and medium shear blending. Powder X-Ray diffraction analyses showed PA–PVP mixture processed by high shear blending to have a slightly reduced degree of crystallinity compared to the mixtures processed by low and medium shear blending. PA–PVP mixture processed using dry high shear blending showed higher bulk porosity than the mixtures processed using low shear and medium shear blending, as indicated by its lower bulk density (0.31 ± 0.01 g/cm3 versus (0.66 to 0.69) g/cm3). Particle blending is a critical process during the preparation of interactive mixtures for tableting. Blending alters the physicochemical and mechanical properties of PA–PVP mixture. Future studies will concentrate on engineering paracetamol-polyvinylpyrrolidone mixtures with optimised physicochemical and mechanical properties.
    • Effect of coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE) mismatch of solder joint materials in photovoltaic (PV) modules operating in elevated temperature climate on the joint's damage

      Ogbomo, Osarumen O.; Amalu, Emeka H.; Ekere, N.N.; Olagbegi, P.O. (Elsevier B V, 2017-09-18)
      With failure of solder joints (SJs) in photovoltaic (PV) modules constituting over 40% of the total module failures, investigation of SJ's reliability factors is critical. This study employs the Garofalo creep model in ANSYS Finite Element Modelling (FEM) to simulate solder joint damage. Accumulated creep strain energy density is used to quantify damage. PV modules consisting of interconnections formed from different material combinations (silver, copper, aluminum, zinc, tin and brass) are subjected to induced temperature cycles ranging from -40 °C to +85 °C. Results show that zinc-solder-silver joint having the highest CTE mismatch of 19.6 ppm exhibits the greatest damage while silver-solder-silver with no mismatch possesses the least damage.
    • Effect of Copolymer Latexes on Physicomechanical Properties of Mortar Containing High Volume Fly Ash as a Replacement Material of Cement

      Negim, ES; Kozhamzharova, L; Gulzhakhan, Y; Khatib, J; Bekbayeva, L; Williams, C; Faculty of Science and Engineering, University of Wolverhampton, Wulfruna Street, Wolverhampton WV1 1LY, UK ; Polymers and Pigments Department, National Research Centre, Dokki, Giza 12622, Egypt. (Hindawi Limited, 2014-08-31)
      © 2014 El-Sayed Negim et al. This paper investigates the physicomechanical properties of mortar containing high volume of fly ash (FA) as partial replacement of cement in presence of copolymer latexes. Portland cement (PC) was partially replaced with 0, 10, 20, 30 50, and 60% FA. Copolymer latexes were used based on 2-hydroxyethyl acrylate (2-HEA) and 2-hydroxymethylacrylate (2-HEMA). Testing included workability, setting time, absorption, chemically combined water content, compressive strength, and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The addition of FA to mortar as replacement of PC affected the physicomechanical properties of mortar. As the content of FA in the concrete increased, the setting times (initial and final) were elongated. The results obtained at 28 days of curing indicate that the maximum properties of mortar occur at around 30% FA. Beyond 30% FA the properties of mortar reduce and at 60% FA the properties of mortar are lower than those of the reference mortar without FA. However, the addition of polymer latexes into mortar containing FA improved most of the physicomechanical properties of mortar at all curing times. Compressive strength, combined water, and workability of mortar containing FA premixed with latexes are higher than those of mortar containing FA without latexes.
    • Effect of crystallization time on the hydrothermal synthesis of zeolites from kaolin and bauxite

      Kwakye-Awuah, B; Von-Kiti, E; Buamah, R; Nkrumah, I; Williams, Craig (IJSER, 2014-02-01)
      Kaolin and bauxite were used as alumina and silica sources to synthesize zeolites hydrothermally. The source mate-rials as well as the synthesized zeolites were characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD) scanning electron microscopy (SEM), en-ergy dispersive x-ray analysis (EDX) and Fourier transformed infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). XRD spectra of the bauxite showed Gibbsite phase whereas that of kaolin gave 32.4 % quartz and 67.6 %. The main phases of zeolites obtained after hydrothermal crystallizations were zeolite types LTA, analcime and zeolite X. Longer crystallization time resulted in phase change of the zeo-lites into sodalite. Hence, natural raw materials such as bauxite and kaolin have the attractive features of providing the staring reagents for the synthesis of ultrapure synthetic zeolites.
    • Effect of curing time on selected properties of soil stabilized with fly ash, marble dust and waste sand for road sub-base materials

      Firat, Seyhan; Khatib, Jamal M.; Yilmaz, Gulgun; Comert, A T (SAGE Publications, 2017-07-12)
      The properties of sub-base filling materials in highway construction are essential, as they can determine the performance of the road in service. Normally, the existing materials are removed and replaced with new materials that have adequate load-bearing capacity. Rising environmental concern and new environmental legislations have made construction professionals consider other methods. These methods include stabilizing the existing materials with other additives to improve their performance. Additives can be waste materials generated by different industries. In this work, the existing excavated soil is stabilized with waste materials. The wastes consisted of fly ash, marble dust and waste sand. The percentage addition of waste materials was 5%, 10%, 15% and 20% (by mass) of the existing soil. The soil/waste specimens were cured for 1, 7, 28, 56, 90 and 112 days before testing. Testing included the dry unit weight and unconfined compressive strength ( qu) as well as X-ray diffraction analysis and scanning electron microscopy observation. Also, the California Bearing Ratio values were obtained and are reported in this investigation. The results showed that the qu values increased with the increase in waste materials content. Also, there is tendency for the dry unit weight to increase with the increase in waste materials.
    • Effect of desulphurised waste on long-term porosity and pore structure of blended cement pastes

      Khatib, Jamal M.; Wright, Lee; Mangat, Pal S. (Elsevier, 2016-06-16)
      This paper presents some results on the porosity and pore size distribution of cement paste containing simulated desulphurised waste (SDW) cured for 90 d. The SDW was chosen for the investigation due to the variability in chemical composition of real desulphurised waste as explained in previous papers. The SDW is a combination of 85% fly ash and 15% gypsum. The cement in the pastes was replaced with 0, 20 and 40% SDW. The water to binder ratio was 0.5. The binder consists of cement and SDW (by weight). After 90 d of curing, the porosity and pore size distribution tests were conducted on the pastes. Increasing the amount of SDW leads to an increase in the pore volume of the paste. There is no clear trend on the effect of SDW on the size of the pores.
    • Effect of drug solubility and accelerated ageing on drug release from polyethylene oxide matrices

      Shojaee S, Kaialy, Waseem, Nokhodchi A, Cumming, I (PBP 9th World Meeting on Pharmaceutics, Biopharmaceutics and Pharmaceutical Technology, 2014)
      The solubility of drug had a big impact on stability of drug release from aged polyox matrices. Aged matrices containing highly soluble drug (propranolol HCl) showed a higher sensitivity of drug release against storage time compared to a poorly water-soluble drugs leading to fast drug release.
    • Effect of Grid Resolution and Terrain Characteristics on Data from DTM

      Heesom, David; Mahdjoubi, Lamine (American Society of Civil Engineers, 2001)
      Previous work in digital terrain modeling (DTM) has shown that if regular gridded-data sets are used in the construction of the model, both the resolution of the gridded-data set and the characteristics of the terrain being modeled have an effect on the accuracy of digital terrain models. The main objective of this study is to test the hypothesis that both the resolution of the gridded-data set and the characteristics of the terrain being modeled have an effect on the accuracy of any derived data. To test this hypothesis, the terrain was classified in terms of its roughness. Various forms of data were derived from the terrain model; these include volumes, surface area, contours, and cross sections. The accuracy for each of these quantities was calculated by comparing them with values obtained from a control model. This research concluded that by both increasing the resolution of the regular gridded-data sets and varying the characeristics of the terrain, the accuracy of any derived data is affected.
    • Effect of indoor environmental quality on visual comfort and productivity in office buildings

      Kaushik, Amit; Arif, Mohammed; Ebohon, Obas John; Arsalan, Hord; Rana, Muhammad Qasim; Obi, Lovelin (Emerald, 2021-11-15)
      Purpose: The Purpose of this paper is to identify statistical relationships between visual environment and occupant productivity. Visual environment is one of the most important indoor environmental quality (IEQ) parameters, and it directly impacts occupant productivity in offices. The literature outlines the significance of the impact. Still, there is a lack of investigation, statistical analysis and inter-relationships between the independent variables (IEQ factors), especially in the hot and arid climate. Design/methodology/approach: This study presents a research study investigating the effects and shows statistical relationships between IEQ on occupant comfort and productivity. The study was conducted in the Middle East, and data was collected for 12 months. It used the response surface analysis to perform analysis. Findings: This study outlined seven unique relationships highlighting the recommended range, inter-dependencies. Results include that illumination has maximum effect on visual comfort and temperature, daylight having direct influence and relative humidity, wall type next to the seat and kind of workspace also impact visual comfort and productivity. These findings would help to improve occupant comfort and productivity in office buildings. It is recommended to include results and recommendations on design guidelines for office buildings. Originality/value: This study presents the unique effects of non-visual IEQ parameters on visual comfort and productivity. This investigation also provides a unique method to develop the statistical relationship between various indoor environmental factors and productivity in different contexts and buildings.
    • Effect of nano-Al2O3 addition on the microstructure and erosion wear of HVOF sprayed NiCrSiB coatings

      Praveen, AS; Arjunan, Arun (IOP Publishing, 2019-12-09)
      Development of nanostructured high velocity oxy-fuel (HVOF) coatings with low porosity, high strength and increased wear resistance is still in its infancy. Combining nanoparticles with conventional microscale powders are increasingly being investigated to use with feedstock materials for thermal spray processes. Accordingly, this work investigates the addition of nano-Al2O3 particles on the microstructure and erosion wear of NiCrSiB HVOF coating in a stainless steel (AISI 304) substrate. Particle analysis of the NiCrSiB feedstock was conducted and the maximum allowable addition of Al2O3 nanoparticles have been identified using the 'mass mixture ratio' model considering both the particle size and density. Consequently, two cases are considered and their performance analysed: a maximum allowable case of 1.4 wt%, followed by a 0.17 wt% addition of nano-Al2O3 with NiCrSiB. Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM), Energy Dispersive Spectroscopy (EDS) and x-ray Diffraction (XRD) analysis were employed to inform the microstructure, material composition and phase spectrum of the resulting coatings. Subsequently, the nanostructured coating was exposed to both a pull-off adhesion strength test and hot air jet (450 °C) hard particle erosion to characterise its performance. It was found that the microhardness of the HVOF NiCrSiB coating improved from 576 HV0.3 to 748 HV0.3 with the addition of 1.4 wt% nano-Al2O3. Furthermore, the nanostructured coating also exhibited high erosion resistance at a 90° erodent impact angle. The increase in erosion wear resistance was due to the increase in the hardness as a result of the nano-Al2O3 addition.
    • Effect of operating temperature on degradation of solder joints in crystalline silicon photovoltaic modules for improved reliability in hot climates

      Ogbomo, Osarumen O.; Amalu, Emeka H.; Ekere, N.N.; Olagbegi, P.O. (Elsevier, 2018-06-22)
      Accelerated degradation of solder joint interconnections in crystalline silicon photovoltaic (c-Si PV) modules drives the high failure rate of the system operating in elevated temperatures. The phenomenon challenges the thermo-mechanical reliability of the system for hot climatic operations. This study investigates the degradation of solder interconnections in c-Si PV modules for cell temperature rise from 25 °C STC in steps of 1 °C to 120 °C. The degradation is measured using accumulated creep strain energy density (Wacc). Generated Wacc magnitudes are utilised to predict the fatigue life of the module for ambient temperatures ranging from European to hot climates. The ANSYS mechanical package coupled with the IEC 61,215 standard accelerated thermal cycle (ATC) profile is employed in the simulation. The Garofalo creep model is used to model the degradation response of solder while other module component materials are simulated with appropriate material models. Solder degradation is found to increase with every 1 °C cell temperature rise from the STC. Three distinct degradation rates in Pa/°C are observed. Region 1, 25 to 42 °C, is characterised by degradation rate increasing quadratically from 1.53 to 10.03 Pa/°C. The degradation rate in region 2 ,43 to 63 °C, is critical with highest constant magnitude of 12.06 Pa/°C. Region 3, 64 to 120 °C, demonstrates lowest degradation rate of logarithmic nature with magnitude 5.47 at the beginning of the region and 2.25 Pa/°C at the end of the region. The module fatigue life, L (in years) is found to decay according to the power function L = 721.48T−1.343. The model predicts module life in London and hot climate to be 18.5 and 9 years, respectively. The findings inform on the degradation of c-Si PV module solder interconnections in different operating ambient temperatures and advise on its operational reliability for improved thermo-mechanical design for hot climatic operations.
    • Effect of partial replacement of cement with slag on the early-age strength of concrete

      Tang, Kangkang; Khatib, Jamal; Beattie, Greg (Institution of Civil Engineers, 2017-02-17)
      Concrete structures are popularly used to provide open space areas that are often incorporated into the design of sports, social and industrial structures. One of the concerns with concrete structures, especially long-span concrete structures, is early-age thermal expansion and subsequent contraction as a result of the exothermic cement hydration reaction. Thermal contraction, externally restrained by vertical structural elements such as columns and shear walls, may cause thermal cracking if it exceeds the tensile strength of the concrete. The early-age thermal loading of cast-in-place concrete can be estimated through isothermal calorimetry, semi-adiabatic calorimetry and finite-element modelling (FEM). This paper discusses the efficiency of using FEM, based on the isothermal calorimetry results, for predicting early-age temperature development of in situ concrete. In addition, this work quantifies the beneficial effect of using ground granulated blast-furnace slag as a partial replacement of cement in structural concrete. The simulation results, validated via semi-adiabatic calorimetry, indicate reduced thermal loading due to the presence of slag. This can be taken as an advantage of using such slag in structural concrete.