Temperatures and wind conditions move traffic noise

first_img(PhysOrg.com) — Imagine sitting down for your early morning coffee when your nice little suburban morning is disrupted by the sound of highway traffic from a quarter mile away. When you purchased your home far from the freeway, the last thing you expected to hear was the roar of traffic, but according to a new study presented at a meeting of the Acoustical Society of America, Nick Ovenden from University College London says that is exactly what can happen when the right temperatures and wind conditions are present. © 2010 PhysOrg.com This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Ovenden worked with an Arizona team to investigate reports from some local Scottsdale, Arizona residents that had been hearing loud noises during the early morning and dusk hours. These residents lived a third of a mile away from the closest highway.By using measurements of sound levels, wind speeds and direction, and temperature, the team inputted the information into models of noise, including the prism-like effects that wind and temperature can have on sound waves.What they discovered was that under the right conditions of crosswind and temperature gradient, sound that would normally go vertical is refracted back down. The reason this occurs most often in the early mornings and at dusk is because sound bends from hotter air to cooler air.At these locations in Scottsdale, the team was able to record sounds as high as 67 decibels, which, if it lasted an hour or longer, is above what the U.S Federal Highway Administration allows without requiring that noise abatement be created. While Ovenden did not record the noise for over an hour, he does say that under the right conditions, it would be possible.While any type of meteorological effect is currently not being used with highway noise models, Ovenden believes this information shows that it should be considered when planning a new highway in order to determine just how bad noise could be in certain areas. More information: Research paper: Impact of meteorological conditions on noise propagation from freeway corridors, J. Acoust. Soc. Am. Volume 126, Issue 1, pp. 25-35 (2009) asadl.org/jasa/resource/1/jasm … 5_s1?isAuthorized=novia Discovery Newscenter_img Explore further Is your convertible damaging your hearing? Citation: Temperatures and wind conditions move traffic noise (2011, May 25) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2011-05-temperatures-conditions-traffic-noise.htmllast_img read more

Read More »

Research team uses robot eye technology to help the blind

first_img(Phys.org) — A research team from Pierre and Marie Curie University in Paris have ported technology originally developed to help robots maneuver in real world environments to Braille enabled devices that help vision impaired people do the same. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. © 2012 Phys.Org The new technology uses a pair of glasses affixed with sensors and cameras connected to hand-held devices that allow the blind wearer to “feel” the 3D environment around them. The team from the university’s Institute of Intelligent Systems and Robotics will be presenting their findings at this month’s IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation.The new technology incorporates cameras and sensors initially developed for use with robotics technology, along with image processing hardware and software, to gather information about the surrounding environment. From there though, the two technologies diverge. Instead of the data collected being routed to AI systems for use by a robot, it moves instead to a processor that converts 3D imagery to Braille signals that are passed along to real-time Braille devices in the hands of the person using the device. The result, the team says, is situational awareness unlike anything else currently available to assist the blind in moving around without benefit of a cane, guide dog or other assistive device.Two create true 3D imagery, the system uses two cameras on each side of the glasses, which are connected to an image processor that picks out objects, edges and other pertinent details of the view ahead. From that, a map is generated to represent the scene from the user’s perspective. That map, along with data from a gyroscope and accelerometers that provide information about speed and current location, is then converted by another processor to a series of signals that are sent to the Braille devices in the hand. Each is a flat pad with pins that can be raised or lowered using heat, to create a virtual tactile real-time image of the surrounding environment. And because the system generates new maps at a rate of about ten per second, the user is able to move, the developers say, at walking speed through a real world environment.Only time will tell of course, just how useful the new technology will be, as those that use it will likely develop a connection with the system over time akin to the way others grow accustomed to keyboards, canes and guide dogs, and only they will be able to judge whether new systems such as this are as useful as they appear in demonstrations.Via NewScientist ‘Sound of Football’ project allows blind to play football (w/ video) Explore further Citation: Research team uses robot eye technology to help the blind (2012, May 2) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2012-05-team-robot-eye-technology.htmllast_img read more

Read More »

Study highlights risk of mosquito borne illnesses to captive orca

first_imgA killer whale leaps out of the water when swimming—a behaviour known as porpoising. Credit: Minette Layne/Wikipedia/CC More information: Orca (Orcinus Orca) Captivity and Vulnerability to Mosquito-transmitted Viruses. Journal of Marine Animals and Their Ecology. Vol. 5, No.2. 2013. (PDF) Three dead in Serbian West Nile virus outbreak (Phys.org) —Marine biologists John Jett and Jeffrey Ventra of Stetson University and Louisiana State University respectively have published a paper in Journal of Marine Animals and Their Ecology that suggests captive orca may be more at risk of dying from mosquito borne illnesses than has been previously thought. Citation: Study highlights risk of mosquito borne illnesses to captive orca (2013, May 31) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2013-05-highlights-mosquito-borne-illnesses-captive.html In their paper Jett and Ventra note that two captive orcas have died from mosquito born ailments since the animals became tourist attractions at water parks. One was a 25 year old male that died of encephalitis in 1990, the other a 14 year old male that died of West Nile Virus in 2007. Both highlight the fact that orca are subject to mosquito bites and because of that are at risk of contracting mosquito borne illnesses.To learn more about the problem the researchers studied the habits of the whales at water parks. They found that orca engage in a practice known as logging, where they simply float on the surface of the water rather than engage in swimming or diving. When logging, they note, mosquitoes congregate on the exposed surfaces of the whales, biting them. The two also noted that the whales are subject to sunburn, which they say, reduces immunity response to illness. Another problem is captive orca have substantial dental health problems which can lead to bacterial infections which in turn can also weaken an immune response.The two also point out that because Congress mandated that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric and Administration keep track of captive orca, records exist of whale births and deaths. In looking at the record they discovered that the whale that died of West Nile Virus in 2007 was listed as having died of pneumonia, suggesting that other whale deaths might have been listed incorrectly as well.The problem, the two say is that water parks are typically located in areas near other facilities that have standing water, which make them prime breeding grounds for mosquitoes. Also, there is no known way to apply sunscreen or mosquito repellant to orca to protect them. They also note that using fogging chemicals around water parks doesn’t appear to be a solution either as most research has shown it to be ineffective as well as hazardous. Curiously, not discussed is the possibility of covering water park tanks with mosquito netting. In any case, Jett and Ventra suggest that more research be done to ascertain whether anything can be done to make life safer for captive orca. © 2013 Phys.org This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Explore furtherlast_img read more

Read More »

Best of Last Week – Neutrino oscillations photo of the moon and

first_img(Phys.org)—It was another good week for physics as one researcher, Roman Schnabel, a professor at the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics, unveiled a plan for entangling massive objects—specifically two 0.1 kg mass mirrors—if the idea can be carried out in an experiment, it would represent a huge leap forward in entangling objects. Also, a team with the University of California cooled the world’s quietest gas to allow them to hear faint quantum effects—at just a billionth of a degree above absolute zero it had the lowest entropy ever recorded. Citation: Best of Last Week – Neutrino oscillations, photo of the moon and Earth and neuro impact of body posture during sleep (2015, August 10) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2015-08-week-neutrino-oscillations-photo-moon.html Explore further © 2015 Phys.org This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

Read More »

Amino acid in fruit fly intestines found to regulate sleep

first_img Researchers find oxidative stress plays a role in telling fruit flies when to sleep Scientists have known about D-serine for many years, but thought that it only existed in bacteria. Recently, however, researchers found that humans also produce the amino acid, as do fruit flies. But until now, it was not known what function it served. In this new effort, the researchers found that, at least in fruit flies, it helps regulate sleep.To learn more about the amino acid, the researchers edited the genes of fly specimens to halt its production and found that doing so resulted in the flies sleeping only half as much as normal flies. But they also found something else. Fruit flies actually produce D-serine in two places—in their intestines and their brains. Logic would suggest that the acid produced in the brain would be the one associated with sleep, but the researchers found that the opposite was true. When they turned off the genes that controlled production of the enzyme, serine racemase, which syntheses D-serine in the intestines, the flies slept less, but when they did the same for those made in the brain, they saw no change in sleep habits.The researchers report that they have no idea how an amino acid produced in the intestines can impact sleep patterns, noting that sleep regulation is probably carried out by the central nervous system. Prior research has shown that sleep is a very old evolutionary development, which suggests its control is likely similar across species. They suggest that more research is needed to find the answers to other questions surrounding D-serine—for instance, is it produced in other parts of the body? Does it play a role in regulating sleep in humans, and if so, how? A team of researchers affiliated with several institutions in China has found that an amino acid made in fruit fly intestines plays a key role in regulating their sleep. In their paper published in the journal Nature Communications, the group describes their study of D-serine in Drosophila melanogaster and what they found. More information: D-Serine made by serine racemase in Drosophila intestine plays a physiological role in sleep, Nature Communications (2019). DOI: 10.1038/s41467-019-09544-9 , https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-019-09544-9 Citation: Amino acid in fruit fly intestines found to regulate sleep (2019, May 8) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-05-amino-acid-fruit-intestines.html © 2019 Science X Networkcenter_img Drosophila melanogaster. Credit: Wikipedia/CC BY-SA 2.5 Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Journal information: Nature Communicationslast_img read more

Read More »

As within so without

first_imgHe seems desperate to search the reflection of self, in the blue water below. The artist Madan Lal leaves it to the viewers to follow the quest and find the answer to the reflection that eludes like a mirage.The artist used symbols of organic elements like floral patterns, egrets, lotus, germination of seeds, among other, to find their place along with the fast pace of technology symbolized by the steering wheel, globe, kettle, glasses, watches. Each canvas is like a book which in the initial glance attracts with a visual appeal, but when looked at more closely requires an attentive mind, to understand many interwoven aspects and elements, that could range from mundane life to a spiritual seeking. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’One of his paintings titled Face within – 3, depicts the human face, time and again, stands out from the crowd comprising of everyday elements symbolized by the kettle, glasses, germinating plants, geometric patterns are seen.Lal’s works do not have any melancholic effect and are rather visually very appealing. Moreover, his works are a kaleidoscope of life experiences that always find their space in some nook or corner of his composition. When asked about the inspiration behind the works the artist quotes famous writer Khalil Gibran ‘Whenever I come to the fountain to drink, I find the living water itself thirsty.’When: Till 10 NovemberWhere: Shridharni Art Gallerylast_img read more

Read More »

Rural people will soundly beat unholy nexus of Opposition says Partha

first_imgKolkata: The rural populace will defeat the “unholy alliance” of CPI-M, Congress and BJP in the forthcoming Panchayat election, scheduled to be held on May 14, Partha Chatterjee, Secretary General of Trinamool Congress, said on Thursday.He said Trinamool is fully ready to face the election, as the party workers go to the people and serve them throughout the year. In the past seven years, massive development has taken place in rural Bengal. “The communication has improved because of construction of new roads and the maintenance of the existing ones. The economic standard of the people has also improved and the students are getting scholarships. The rural people have seen how the development work is being carried out,” Chatterjee said.Coming down heavily on the Opposition, he said “The Opposition did not keep faith on the people and instead moved the Court with a motive to spoil the election. They have no contacts with people and so, an unholy alliance has been formed between CPI-M, Congress and BJP.”Chatterjee said that Congress and CPI-M had formed an unholy alliance against Trinamool in the 2016 Assembly election. The people had defeated the alliance, which was not formed on the basis of any principle, he said.”CPI-M and Congress has again formed an alliance and this time, they have BJP on their side. The people are against the alliance, which has been formed without any principle and will defeat them,” said Chatterjee.Chatterjee said that the Opposition is not saying a single word on the development that has taken place in rural Bengal. From roads to drinking water, there has been total development. “The Opposition think that they can conduct the election from their homes,” he said, adding that the leaders should go to the people instead.Meanwhile, BJP state president Dilip Ghosh and one of the party’s senior leaders Pratap Banerjee, have given contradictory views on the Court judgment. While Ghosh said the people will vote and the State Election Commission should ensure their safety and security, Banerjee expressed his displeasure over the judgment.last_img read more

Read More »

80 people die in city daily due to air pollution

first_imgIn a written reply in Rajya Sabha, Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar said that polluted air, particularly the respirable particulate matter is one of the several factors responsible for morbidity and premature deaths. “An international study released recently has claimed that foul air is killing up to 80 people a day in Delhi. The numbers of premature deaths given in the study are based on the constructive estimates and extrapolations of data,” the minister said. Also Read – Company director arrested for swindling Rs 345 croreHe said that government had sponsored two studies in Delhi, “Epidemiological Study on Effects of Air Pollution on Human Health in Delhi” during 2002-2005 and “Study on Ambient Air Quality, Respiratory Symptoms and Lung Function of Children in Delhi” which was carried out during 2003-2005. “The studies indicate that several pulmonary and systemic immunity and damage to chromosomes and DNA and other health impairments are associated with cumulative exposure to high level of particulate pollution that increases the risk of various diseases including respiratory and cardiovascular diseases,” Javadekar said.  Also Read – Man who cheated 20 women on matrimonial websites arrestedHe also added that of 2,800 highly polluting industries required to install online monitoring systems, industries have set up 920 such devices as on June 30. In a written reply in Rajya Sabha, Environment and Forests Minister Prakash Javadekar said that 2,800 industries under 17 categories of highly polluting industries are required to install online monitoring system.Of these, the industries have installed 920 devices, he said. Javadekar said that grossly polluting industries located in the Ganga basin are also required to install online monitoring system for effluents.“The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) has issued directions to direct all industries falling under 17 categories of highly polluting industries to install online effluent/emission monitoring system inluding (those of) public sector like Steel Authority of India Limited, National Aluminium Company Limited and National Thermal Power Corporation Limited,” he said.last_img read more

Read More »