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- All Subjects: engineering
ABSTRACT Facility managers have an important job in today's competitive business world by caring for the backbone of the corporation's capital. Maintaining assets and the support efforts cause facility managers to fight an uphill battle to prove the worth of their organizations. This thesis will discuss the important and flexible use of measurement and leadership reports and the benefits of justifying the work required to maintain or upgrade a facility. The task is streamlined by invoking accountability to subject experts. The facility manager must trust in the ability of his or her work force to get the job done. However, with accountability comes increased risk. Even though accountability may not alleviate total control or cease reactionary actions, facility managers can develop key leadership based reports to reassign accountability and measure subject matter experts while simultaneously reducing reactionary actions leading to increased cost. Identifying and reassigning risk that are not controlled to subject matter experts is imperative for effective facility management leadership and allows facility managers to create an accurate and solid facility management plan, supports the organization's succession plan, and allows the organization to focus on key competencies.
As a term and method that is rapidly gaining popularity, Building Information Modeling (BIM) is under the scrutiny of many building professionals questioning its potential benefits on their projects. A relevant and accepted calculation methodology and baseline to properly evaluate BIM's benefits have not been established, thus there are mixed perspectives and opinions of the benefits of BIM, creating a general misunderstanding of the expected outcomes. The purpose of this thesis was to develop a more complete methodology to analyze the benefits of BIM, apply recent projects to this methodology to quantify outcomes, resulting in a more a holistic framework of BIM and its impacts on project efficiency. From the literature, a framework calculation model to determine the value of BIM is developed and presented. The developed model is applied via case studies within a large industrial setting where similar projects are evaluated, some implementing BIM and some with traditional non-BIM approaches. Cost or investment metrics were considered along with benefit or return metrics. The return metrics were: requests for information, change orders, and duration improvements. The investment metrics were: design and construction costs. The methodology was tested against three separate cases and results on the returns and investments are presented. The findings indicate that in the tool installation department of semiconductor manufacturing, there is a high potential for BIM benefits to be realized. The evidence also suggests that actual returns and investments will vary with each project.
Two-dimensional vision-based measurement is an ideal choice for measuring small or fragile parts that could be damaged using conventional contact measurement methods. Two-dimensional vision-based measurement systems can be quite expensive putting the technology out of reach of inventors and others. The vision-based measurement tool design developed in this thesis is a low cost alternative that can be made for less than $500US from off-the-shelf parts and free software. The design is based on the USB microscope. The USB microscope was once considered a toy, similar to the telescopes and microscopes of the 17th century, but has recently started finding applications in industry, laboratories, and schools. In order to convert the USB microscope into a measurement tool, research in the following areas was necessary: currently available vision-based measurement systems, machine vision technologies, microscope design, photographic methods, digital imaging, illumination, edge detection, and computer aided drafting applications. The result of the research was a two-dimensional vision-based measurement system that is extremely versatile, easy to use, and, best of all, inexpensive.
A primary motivation of research in photovoltaic technology is to obtain higher efficiency photovoltaic devices at reduced cost of production so that solar electricity can be cost competitive. The majority of photovoltaic technologies are based on p-n junction, with efficiency potential being much lower than the thermodynamic limits of individual technologies and thereby providing substantial scope for further improvements in efficiency. The thesis explores photovoltaic devices using new physical processes that rely on thin layers and are capable of attaining the thermodynamic limit of photovoltaic technology. Silicon heterostructure is one of the candidate technologies in which thin films induce a minority carrier collecting junction in silicon and the devices can achieve efficiency close to the thermodynamic limits of silicon technology. The thesis proposes and experimentally establishes a new theory explaining the operation of silicon heterostructure solar cells. The theory will assist in identifying the optimum properties of thin film materials for silicon heterostructure and help in design and characterization of the devices, along with aiding in developing new devices based on this technology. The efficiency potential of silicon heterostructure is constrained by the thermodynamic limit (31%) of single junction solar cell and is considerably lower than the limit of photovoltaic conversion (~ 80 %). A further improvement in photovoltaic conversion efficiency is possible by implementing a multiple quasi-fermi level system (MQFL). A MQFL allows the absorption of sub band gap photons with current being extracted at a higher band-gap, thereby allowing to overcome the efficiency limit of single junction devices. A MQFL can be realized either by thin epitaxial layers of alternating higher and lower band gap material with nearly lattice matched (quantum well) or highly lattice mismatched (quantum dot) structure. The thesis identifies the material combination for quantum well structure and calculates the absorption coefficient of a MQFl based on quantum well. GaAsSb (barrier)/InAs(dot) was identified as a candidate material for MQFL using quantum dot. The thesis explains the growth mechanism of GaAsSb and the optimization of GaAsSb and GaAs heterointerface.
This work demonstrates the integration of a wearable particulate detector and a wireless chemical sensor into a single portable system. The detection philosophy of the chemical sensor is based on highly selective and sensitive microfabricated quartz tuning fork arrays and the particle detector detects the particulate level in real-time using a nephelometric (light scattering) approach. The device integration is realized by carefully evaluating the needs of flow rate, power and data collection. Validation test has been carried out in both laboratory and in field trials such as parking structures and highway exits with high and low traffic emissions. The integrated single portable detection system is capable of reducing the burden for a child to carry multiple devices, simplifying the task of researchers to synchronize and analyze data from different sensors, and minimizing the overall weight, size, and cost of the sensor. It also has a cell phone for data analysis, storage, and transmission as a user-friendly interface. As the chemical and particulate levels present important exposure risks that are of high interests to epidemiologists, the integrated device will provide an easier, wearable and cost effective way to monitor it.
The presence of compounds such as pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) in the environment is a cause for concern as they exhibit secondary effects on non-target organisms and are also indicative of incomplete removal by wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) during water reclamation. Analytical methods and predictive models can help inform on the rates at which these contaminants enter the environment via biosolids use or wastewater effluent release to estimate the risk of adverse effects. The goals of this research project were to integrate the results obtained from the two different methods of risk assessment, (a) in silico modeling and (b) experimental analysis. Using a previously published empirical model, influent and effluent concentration ranges were predicted for 10 sterols and validated with peer-reviewed literature. The in silico risk assessment analysis performed for sterols and hormones in biosolids concluded that hormones possess high leaching potentials and that particularly 17-α-ethinyl estradiol (EE2) can pose significant threat to fathead minnows (P. promelas) via leaching from terrestrial depositions of biosolids. Six mega-composite biosolids samples representative of 94 WWTPs were analyzed for a suite of 120 PPCPs using the extended U.S. EPA Method 1694 protocol. Results indicated the presence of 26 previously unmonitored PPCPs in the samples with estimated annual release rates of 5-15 tons yr-1 via land application of biosolids. A mesocosm sampling analysis that was included in the study concluded that four compounds amitriptyline, paroxetine, propranolol and sertraline warrant further monitoring due to their high release rates from land applied biosolids and their calculated extended half-lives in soils. There is a growing interest in the scientific community towards the development of new analytical protocols for analyzing solid matrices such as biosolids for the presence of PPCPs and other established and emerging contaminants of concern. The two studies presented here are timely and an important addition to the increasing base of scientific articles regarding environmental release of PPCPs and exposure risks associated with biosolids land application. This research study emphasizes the need for coupling experimental results with predictive analytical modeling output in order to more fully assess the risks posed by compounds detected in biosolids.
This thesis discusses the evolution of conduction mechanism in the silver (Ag) on zinc oxide (ZnO) thin film system with respect to the Ag morphology. As a plausible substitute for indium tin oxide (ITO), TCO/Metal/TCO (TMT) structure has received a lot of attentions as a prospective ITO substitute due to its low resistivity and desirable transmittance. However, the detailed conduction mechanism is not fully understood. In an attempt to investigate the conduction mechanism of the ZnO/Ag/ZnO thin film system with respect to the Ag microstructure, the top ZnO layer is removed, which offers a better view of Ag morphology by using scanning electron microscopy (SEM). With 2 nm thick Ag layer, it is seen that the Ag forms discrete islands with small islands size (r), but large separation (s); also the effective resistivity of the system is extremely high. This regime is designated as dielectric zone. In this regime, thermionic emission and activated tunneling conduction mechanisms are considered. Based on simulations, when "s" was beyond 6 nm, thermionic emission dominates; with "s" less than 6 nm, activated tunneling is the dominating mechanism. As the Ag thickness increases, the individual islands coalesce and Ag clusters are formed. At certain Ag thickness, there are one or several Ag clusters that percolate the ZnO film, and the effective resistivity of the system exhibits a tremendous drop simultaneously, because the conducting electrons do not need to overcome huge ZnO barrier to transport. This is recognized as percolation zone. As the Ag thickness grows, Ag film becomes more continuous and there are no individual islands left on the surface. The effective resistivity decreases and is comparable to the characteristics of metallic materials, so this regime is categorized as metallic zone. The simulation of the Ag thin film resistivity is performed in terms of Ag thickness, and the experimental data fits the simulation well, which supports the proposed models. Hall measurement and four point probe measurement are carried out to characterize the electrical properties of the thin film system.
Today's competitive markets force companies to constantly engage in the complex task of managing their demand. In make-to-order manufacturing or service systems, the demand of a product is shaped by price and lead times, where high price and lead time quotes ensure profitability for supplier, but discourage the customers from placing orders. Low price and lead times, on the other hand, generally result in high demand, but do not necessarily ensure profitability. The price and lead time quotation problem considers the trade-off between offering high and low prices and lead times. The recent practices in make-to- order manufacturing companies reveal the importance of dynamic quotation strategies, under which the prices and lead time quotes flexibly change depending on the status of the system. In this dissertation, the objective is to model a make-to-order manufacturing system and explore various aspects of dynamic quotation strategies such as the behavior of optimal price and lead time decisions, the impact of customer preferences on optimal decisions, the benefits of employing dynamic quotation in comparison to simpler quotation strategies, and the benefits of coordinating price and lead time decisions. I first consider a manufacturer that receives demand from spot purchasers (who are quoted dynamic price and lead times), as well as from contract customers who have agree- ments with the manufacturer with fixed price and lead time terms. I analyze how customer preferences affect the optimal price and lead time decisions, the benefits of dynamic quo- tation, and the optimal mix of spot purchaser and contract customers. These analyses necessitate the computation of expected tardiness of customer orders at the moment cus- tomer enters the system. Hence, in the second part of the dissertation, I develop method- ologies to compute the expected tardiness in multi-class priority queues. For the trivial single class case, a closed formulation is obtained. For the more complex multi-class case, numerical inverse Laplace transformation algorithms are developed. In the last part of the dissertation, I model a decentralized system with two components. Marketing department determines the price quotes with the objective of maximizing revenues, and manufacturing department determines the lead time quotes to minimize lateness costs. I discuss the ben- efits of coordinating price and lead time decisions, and develop an incentivization scheme to reduce the negative impacts of lack of coordination.
From the instructional perspective, the scope of "active learning" in the literature is very broad and includes all sorts of classroom activities that engage students with the learning experience. However, classifying all classroom activities as a mode of "active learning" simply ignores the unique cognitive processes associated with the type of activity. The lack of an extensive framework and taxonomy regarding the relative effectiveness of these "active" activities makes it difficult to compare and contrast the value of conditions in different studies in terms of student learning. Recently, Chi (2009) proposed a framework of differentiated overt learning activities (DOLA) as active, constructive, and interactive based on their underlying cognitive principles and their effectiveness on students' learning outcomes. The motivating question behind this framework is whether some types of engagement affect learning outcomes more than the others. This work evaluated the effectiveness and applicability of the DOLA framework to learning activities for STEM classes. After classification of overt learning activities as being active, constructive or interactive, I then tested the ICAP hypothesis, which states that student learning is more effective in interactive activities than constructive activities, which are more effective than active activities, which are more effective than passive activities. I conducted two studies (Study 1 and Study 2) to determine how and to what degree differentiated activities affected students' learning outcomes. For both studies, I measured students' knowledge of materials science and engineering concepts. Results for Study 1 showed that students scored higher on all post-class quiz questions after participating in interactive and constructive activities than after the active activities. However, student scores on more difficult, inference questions suggested that interactive activities provided significantly deeper learning than either constructive or active activities. Results for Study 2 showed that students' learning, in terms of gain scores, increased systematically from passive to active to constructive to interactive, as predicted by ICAP. All the increases, from condition to condition, were significant. Verbal analysis of the students' dialogue in interactive condition indicated a strong correlation between the co-construction of knowledge and learning gains. When the statements and responses of each student build upon those of the other, both students benefit from the collaboration. Also, the linear combination of discourse moves was significantly related to the adjusted gain scores with a very high correlation coefficient. Specifically, the elaborate type discourse moves were positively correlated with learning outcomes; whereas the accept type moves were negatively correlated with learning outcomes. Analyses of authentic activities in a STEM classroom showed that they fit within the taxonomy of the DOLA framework. The results of the two studies provided evidence to support the predictions of the ICAP hypothesis.
Air pollution is one of the biggest challenges people face today. It is closely related to people's health condition. The agencies set up standards to regulate the air pollution. However, many of the pollutants under the regulation level may still result in adverse health effect. On the other hand, it is not clear the exact mechanism of air pollutants and its health effect. So it is difficult for the health centers to advise people how to prevent the air pollutant related diseases. It is of vital importance for both the agencies and the health centers to have a better understanding of the air pollution. Based on these needs, it is crucial to establish mobile health sensors for personal exposure assessment. Here, two sensing principles are illustrated: the tuning fork platform and the colorimetric platform. Mobile devices based on these principles have been built. The detections of ozone, NOX, carbon monoxide and formaldehyde have been shown. An integrated device of nitrogen dioxide and carbon monoxide is introduced. Fan is used for sample delivery instead pump and valves to reduce the size, cost and power consumption. Finally, the future work is discussed.