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[en] Non-native grass mixtures are often used to quickly establish ground cover on highway construction sites. Because soil is often mixed with parent material, reclamation is difficult in many of these locations. The inclusion of native seeds at two roadside locations in eastern West Virginia was evaluated in this study. The field sites had among the harshest climate conditions of the state, and the intent was to evaluate the establishment of varying seed mixtures at low/moderate and high elevations. Four experimental seed mixtures (mowable areas, cool season, warm season, and high elevation) were compared to two currently used seed mixtures for erosion control. Ground cover, biomass, compaction, and soil information were monitored over three growing seasons (2015–2017). Results show that the mowable area and cool season mixtures show promise at a wide range of elevations. While the warm season mixture did meet minimum ground cover (70%) at the low elevation location, the use will be limited due to slower time to establishment; however, the inclusion of the warm season mixture will meet the need of included native species in roadside reclamation. Experimental mixtures were resilient to periods of drought and high temperature throughout the study. The high elevation seed mixture did not perform better than the other experimental seed mixtures, so its use is not recommended for right-of-way locations in West Virginia. The cool season and mowable area mixtures likely meet this need.
[en] There is now strong evidence that long-duration gamma-ray bursts (LGRBs) are preferentially formed in low-metallicity environments. However, the magnitude of this effect and its functional dependence on metallicity have not been well characterized. In our previous paper, we compared the metallicity distribution of LGRB host galaxies to that of star-forming galaxies in the local universe. Here we build upon this work by in effect dividing one distribution by the other, and thus directly determine the relative rate of LGRB formation as a function of metallicity in the low-redshift universe. We find a dramatic cutoff in LGRB formation above a metallicity of in the KK04 scale, with LGRBs forming between 10 and 50 times more frequently per unit star formation below this cutoff than above. Furthermore, our data suggest that the rate of LGRB formation per unit star formation continues to fall above this break. We estimate that the LGRB formation rate per unit star formation may drop by as much as a factor of 100 between one-third solar and solar metallicity.
[en] This paper examines the feasibility of detecting strontium 90 in groundwater directly with photodiodes and considers the physical parameters which maximise radiation absorption within the detector. Geant4 simulations were used to draw comparisons between silicon, gallium arsenide and cadmium telluride detectors of varying surface area and thickness. Detectors were compared in their ability to absorb point and scattered sources of radiation. The results indicate that a detector, of 10 mm2 surface area, and 1 mm thickness offered the highest detection efficiency in a contaminated groundwater simulation. 1 mm thick and 100 mm2 detectors cadmium telluride and gallium arsenide detectors were modelled in a groundwater borehole scenario. Each material offered similar detection efficiency, but the greater backscattering effect in cadmium telluride resulted in a greater peak at lower energies compared to that observed in gallium arsenide.
[en] Current echocardiographic data reporting the impact of concomitant mitral regurgitation (MR) on outcome in patients who undergo transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) are conflicting. Using cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) imaging, this study aimed to assess the impact of MR severity on cardiac reverse remodeling and patient outcome. 85 patients undergoing TAVR with CMR pre- and 6 m post-TAVR were evaluated. The CMR protocol included cines for left (LV) and right ventricular (RV) volumes, flow assessment, and myocardial scar assessment by late gadolinium enhancement (LGE). Patients were dichotomised according to CMR severity of MR fraction at baseline (‘non-significant’ vs ‘significant’) and followed up for a median duration of 3 years. Forty-two (49%) patients had ‘significant MR’ at baseline; they had similar LV and RV size and function compared to the ‘non-significant MR’ group but had greater LV mass at baseline. In those with significant MR at baseline, 77% (n = 32) had a reduction in MR post-TAVR, moving them into the ‘non-significant’ category at 6-months, with an overall reduction in MR fraction from 34 to 17% (p < 0.001). Improvement in MR was not associated with more favourable cardiac reverse remodeling when compared with the ‘non-improvers’. Significant MR at baseline was not associated with increased mortality at follow-up. Significant MR is common in patients undergoing TAVR and improves in the majority post-procedure. Improvement in MR was not associated with more favourable LV reverse remodeling and baseline MR severity was not associated with mortality.
[en] We present an analysis of the orbital motion of the four substellar objects orbiting HR 8799. Our study relies on the published astrometric history of this system augmented with an epoch obtained with the Project 1640 coronagraph with an integral field spectrograph (IFS) installed at the Palomar Hale telescope. We first focus on the intricacies associated with astrometric estimation using the combination of an extreme adaptive optics system (PALM-3000), a coronagraph, and an IFS. We introduce two new algorithms. The first one retrieves the stellar focal plane position when the star is occulted by a coronagraphic stop. The second one yields precise astrometric and spectrophotometric estimates of faint point sources even when they are initially buried in the speckle noise. The second part of our paper is devoted to studying orbital motion in this system. In order to complement the orbital architectures discussed in the literature, we determine an ensemble of likely Keplerian orbits for HR 8799bcde, using a Bayesian analysis with maximally vague priors regarding the overall configuration of the system. Although the astrometric history is currently too scarce to formally rule out coplanarity, HR 8799d appears to be misaligned with respect to the most likely planes of HR 8799bce orbits. This misalignment is sufficient to question the strictly coplanar assumption made by various authors when identifying a Laplace resonance as a potential architecture. Finally, we establish a high likelihood that HR 8799de have dynamical masses below , using a loose dynamical survival argument based on geometric close encounters. We illustrate how future dynamical analyses will further constrain dynamical masses in the entire system.
[en] Recent Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array observations present mounting evidence for the presence of exocometary gas released within Kuiper Belt analogs around nearby main-sequence stars. This represents a unique opportunity to study their ice reservoir at the younger ages when volatile delivery to planets is most likely to occur. We here present the detection of CO J = 2-1 emission colocated with dust emission from the cometary belt in the 440 Myr old Fomalhaut system. Through spectrospatial filtering, we achieve a 5.4σ detection and determine that the ring’s sky-projected rotation axis matches that of the star. The CO mass derived () is the lowest of any circumstellar disk detected to date and must be of exocometary origin. Using a steady-state model, we estimate the CO+CO2 mass fraction of exocomets around Fomalhaut to be between 4.6% and 76%, consistent with solar system comets and the two other belts known to host exocometary gas. This is the first indication of a similarity in cometary compositions across planetary systems that may be linked to their formation scenario and is consistent with direct interstellar medium inheritance. In addition, we find tentative evidence that % of the detected flux originates from a region near the eccentric belt’s pericenter. If confirmed, the latter may be explained through a recent impact event or CO pericenter glow due to exocometary release within a steady-state collisional cascade. In the latter scenario, we show how the azimuthal dependence of the CO release rate leads to asymmetries in gas observations of eccentric exocometary belts.
[en] Highlights: • ORR activity and selectivity are tested using a RRDE for different AuPd compositions. • Size-controlled nanoparticles are immobilized directly on to the electrode. • Au rich particles favour 2-electron reduction with low activity. • Au nanoparticles can maintain high selectivity to H2O2 over time. The electrochemical synthesis of hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) represents a promising alternative to the anthraquinone process, as it combines on-site chemical and electrical production. The design of selective electrocatalysts is challenging and is commonly based on the alloying of elements to generate a synergistic effect and increase activity. In the present work, we report the electrochemical activity of Au-Pd nanoparticles immobilized directly onto an electrode as a model to study H2O2 electrochemical synthesis from fundamentals to continuous production. The impact of composition on the oxygen reduction reaction (ORR), the selectivity, as well as the peroxide reduction and oxidation reactions (PROR) are studied.