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Concept: Wheel


For the ultrasonic testing at the wheel seat of railway axles, quantitative investigation of the reflection and transmission phenomena at the axle-wheel interface is important. This paper describes the influence of the axle-wheel interface on the ultrasonic testing of a fatigue crack in a wheelset by applying the spring interface model. The normal and tangential stiffnesses were identified experimentally for an as-manufactured wheelset at the normal incidence, and the reflection coefficient for the shear-wave oblique incidence was calculated. A parametric study was performed to clarify the influence of these interfacial stiffnesses on the incident-angle dependence of the reflection coefficient. The calculated reflection coefficient at the incident angle of 45° qualitatively explained the relative echo-height decrease due to the presence of a wheel observed experimentally for a wheelset in fatigue loading by rotating bending. The quantitative difference between the experimental and calculated results was considered to be due to the reduction of the effective interference of shrink fit by the wear at the axle-wheel interface during the fatigue loading as well as by the applied bending moment. For the estimated relative echo-height decrease to agree with the experimental results, the interfacial stiffnesses were found to be smaller than the values identified for the as-manufactured wheelset by a factor of 0.5-0.7.

Concepts: Snell's law, Refraction, Research, Total internal reflection, Geometrical optics, Angle of incidence, Wheel, Axle


The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of wheelchair mass, solid vs. pneumatic tires and tire pressure on physical strain and wheelchair propulsion technique. 11 Able-bodied participants performed 14 submaximal exercise blocks on a treadmill with a fixed speed (1.11m/s) within 3 weeks to determine the effect of tire pressure (100%, 75%, 50%, 25% of the recommended value), wheelchair mass (0kg, 5kg, or 10kg extra) and tire type (pneumatic vs. solid). All test conditions (except pneumatic vs. solid) were performed with and without instrumented measurement wheels. Outcome measures were power output (PO), physical strain (heart rate (HR), oxygen uptake (VO2), gross mechanical efficiency (ME)) and propulsion technique (timing, force application). At 25% tire pressure PO and subsequently VO2 were higher compared to 100% tire pressure. Furthermore, a higher tire pressure led to a longer cycle time and contact angle and subsequently lower push frequency. Extra mass did not lead to an increase in PO, physical strain or propulsion technique. Solid tires led to a higher PO and physical strain. The solid tire effect was amplified by increased mass (tire×mass interaction). In contrast to extra mass, tire pressure and tire type have an effect on PO, physical strain or propulsion technique of steady-state wheelchair propulsion. As expected, it is important to optimize tire pressure and tire type.

Concepts: Wheel, Tire, Tires


We describe the regioselective complexation of a non-symmetric 5-bromovaleronitrile axle by a non-symmetric pillar[5]arene bearing different alkyl (methyl and pentyl) rims, forming an oriented interpenetrated complex with the directionality of CN@methyl rim and Br@pentyl rim.

Concepts: Functional groups, Wheel, Rim


Schistosomiasis has been of concern to local health authorities for most of the last century, and in spite of a lack of effective chemotherapy, the disease was dealt with quite effectively in many endemic countries by snail control and environmental management [1]. Much of this work was reported in journals prior to the electronic era but, sadly, seems to have been subsequently ignored. For many years, there followed a global hiatus on schistosomiasis control, and much of the local expertise was lost, but many things have changed more recently, mainly with the advent of generic and affordable praziquantel. With the increased availability of this drug, there has been an increasing interest in readdressing schistosomes as well as other neglected tropical diseases (NTDs). The strategic approach for this had been based almost exclusively on chemotherapy. Recently, however, questions arose about this strategy with evidence that chemotherapy alone was not succeeding [2]. Additional strategies were needed, and the “Towards Elimination of Schistosomiasis” (TES) 2017 Conference in Cameroon stressed an integrated PHASE strategy. This was in line with the WHO-NTD and WHO-AFRO 2014-2020 Regional Strategy on NTDs and directed emphasis on transmission control. Subsequently, this emphasis was discussed in a comprehensive review [3] that stressed the importance of such additions to any elimination programme. In reality, this means focusing on the aquatic snail hosts where and when transmission occurs, defining other risk factors such as water contact and latrine design and identifying improved sanitation and health education as essential components for elimination. For schistosomiasis reduction during the mid-20th century, transmission control was used extensively, but these facts are not well reported. Recent reviews have attempted to cover previous research [4,5], but sadly, they have left major knowledge gaps, particularly from Africa. These omissions also occurred in a recent WHO pamphlet on molluscicides [6]. Sadly, search engines used to retrieve information appear to miss much done by 5 African research institutes active from 1950 to 1990. It seems appropriate to take a look back to a time when fieldwork was a focus of research and transmission control was emphasised.

Concepts: Epidemiology, Schistosomiasis, Strategy, Sanitation, Neglected diseases, Wheel, Tropical diseases, Reinventing the wheel


Illusory control refers to an effect in games of chance where features associated with skilful situations increase expectancies of success. Past work has operationalised illusory control in terms of subjective ratings or behaviour, with limited consideration of the relationship between these definitions, or the broader construct of agency. This study used a novel card-guessing task in 78 participants to investigate the relationship between subjective and behavioural illusory control. We compared trials in which participants (i) had no opportunity to exercise illusory control, (ii) could exercise illusory control for free, or (iii) could pay to exercise illusory control. Contingency Judgment and Intentional Binding tasks assessed explicit and implicit sense of agency, respectively. On the card-guessing task, confidence was higher when participants exerted control relative to the baseline condition. In a complementary model, participants were more likely to exercise control when their confidence was high, and this effect was accentuated in the pay condition relative to the free condition. Decisions to pay were positively correlated with control ratings on the Contingency Judgment task, but were not significantly related to Intentional Binding. These results establish an association between subjective and behavioural illusory control, and locate the construct within the cognitive literature on agency.

Concepts: Psychology, Behavior, Human behavior, Behaviorism, Task, Social relation, Applied behavior analysis, Wheel


Several rodent species that are diurnal in the field become nocturnal in the lab. It has been suggested that the use of running-wheels in the lab might contribute to this timing switch. This proposition is based on studies that indicate feed-back of vigorous wheel-running on the period and phase of circadian clocks that time daily activity rhythms. Tuco-tucos (Ctenomys aff. knighti) are subterranean rodents that are diurnal in the field but are robustly nocturnal in laboratory, with or without access to running wheels. We assessed their energy metabolism by continuously and simultaneously monitoring rates of oxygen consumption, body temperature, general motor and wheel running activity for several days in the presence and absence of wheels. Surprisingly, some individuals spontaneously suppressed running-wheel activity and switched to diurnality in the respirometry chamber, whereas the remaining animals continued to be nocturnal even after wheel removal. This is the first report of timing switches that occur with spontaneous wheel-running suppression and which are not replicated by removal of the wheel.

Concepts: Metabolism, Energy, Rodent, Circadian rhythm, Wheel, Caviomorpha, Diurnality, Tuco-tuco


This paper discusses the predicted increase in the occurrence and severity of motion sickness in self-driving cars. Self-driving cars have the potential to lead to significant benefits. From the driver’s perspective, the direct benefits of this technology are considered increased comfort and productivity. However, we here show that the envisaged scenarios all lead to an increased risk of motion sickness. As such, the benefits this technology is assumed to bring may not be capitalised on, in particular by those already susceptible to motion sickness. This can negatively affect user acceptance and uptake and, in turn, limit the potential socioeconomic benefits that this emerging technology may provide. Following a discussion on the causes of motion sickness in the context of self-driving cars, we present guidelines to steer the design and development of automated vehicle technologies. The aim is to limit or avoid the impact of motion sickness and ultimately promote the uptake of self-driving cars. Attention is also given to less well known consequences of motion sickness, in particular negative aftereffects such as postural instability, and detrimental effects on task performance and how this may impact the use and design of self-driving cars. We conclude that basic perceptual mechanisms need to be considered in the design process whereby self-driving cars cannot simply be thought of as living rooms, offices, or entertainment venues on wheels.

Concepts: Engineering, Design, Graphic design, Design management, The Driver, Wheel, The UpTake, Motion graphics


. To assess the net impact on U.S. longevity of the decision to commute by bicycle rather than automobile.

Concepts: Risk, Cycling, Wheel, Bicycle, Commuting


BACKGROUND: Handrim wheelchair propulsion is a complex bimanual motor task. The bimanually applied forces on the rims determine the speed and direction of locomotion. Measurements of forces and torques on the handrim are important to study status and change of propulsion technique (and consequently mechanical strain) due to processes of learning, training or the wheelchair configuration. The purpose of this study was to compare the simultaneous outcomes of two different measurement-wheels attached to the different sides of the wheelchair, to determine measurement consistency within and between these wheels given the expected inter- and intra-limb variability as a consequence of motor control. METHODS: Nine able-bodied subjects received a three-week low-intensity handrim wheelchair practice intervention. They then performed three four-minute trials of wheelchair propulsion in an instrumented hand rim wheelchair on a motor-driven treadmill at a fixed belt speed. The two measurement-wheels on each side of the wheelchair measured forces and torques of one of the two upper limbs, which simultaneously perform the push action over time. The resulting data were compared as direct output using cross-correlation on the torque around the wheel-axle. Calculated push characteristics such as power production and speed were compared using an intra-class correlation. RESULTS: Measured torque around the wheel axle of the two measurement-wheels had a high average cross-correlation of 0.98 (std=0.01). Unilateral mean power output over a minute was found to have an intra-class correlation of 0.89 between the wheels. Although the difference over the pushes between left and right power output had a high variability, the mean difference between the measurement-wheels was low at 0.03 W (std=1.60). Other push characteristics showed even higher ICC’s (>0.9). CONCLUSIONS: A good agreement between both measurement-wheels was found at the level of the power output. This indicates a high comparability of the measurement-wheels for the different propulsion parameters. Data from both wheels seem suitable to be used together or interchangeably in experiments on motor control and wheelchair propulsion performance. A high variability in forces and timing between the left and right side were found during the execution of this bimanual task , reflecting the human motor control process.

Concepts: Measurement, Torque, Force, Arithmetic mean, Covariance and correlation, Motor skill, Power, Wheel


In this paper, a new localization system utilizing afocal optical flow sensor (AOFS) based sensor fusion for indoor service robots in low luminance and slippery environment is proposed, where conventional localization systems do not perform well. To accurately estimate the moving distance of a robot in a slippery environment, the robot was equipped with an AOFS along with two conventional wheel encoders. To estimate the orientation of the robot, we adopted a forward-viewing mono-camera and a gyroscope. In a very low luminance environment, it is hard to conduct conventional feature extraction and matching for localization. Instead, the interior space structure from an image and robot orientation was assessed. To enhance the appearance of image boundary, rolling guidance filter was applied after the histogram equalization. The proposed system was developed to be operable on a low-cost processor and implemented on a consumer robot. Experiments were conducted in low illumination condition of 0.1 lx and carpeted environment. The robot moved for 20 times in a 1.5 × 2.0 m square trajectory. When only wheel encoders and a gyroscope were used for robot localization, the maximum position error was 10.3 m and the maximum orientation error was 15.4°. Using the proposed system, the maximum position error and orientation error were found as 0.8 m and within 1.0°, respectively.

Concepts: Robotics, Robot, Wheel, Conducting, Domestic robot, Image histogram