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Doctoral Dissertations

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Full-Text Articles in Engineering

Buckling Of Thin Cylindrical Shells: Imperfection Sensitivity, Non-Destructive Technique For Capacity Prediction And Application For Wind Turbine Towers, Kshitij Kumar Yadav Apr 2021

Buckling Of Thin Cylindrical Shells: Imperfection Sensitivity, Non-Destructive Technique For Capacity Prediction And Application For Wind Turbine Towers, Kshitij Kumar Yadav

Doctoral Dissertations

The presence of imperfections significantly reduces the load-carrying capacity of thin cylindrical shells and the reduction depends on the shape and the size of the imperfections. As a result, the prediction of the shells' buckling capacity requires a priori knowledge about the imperfections---a difficult, expansive, and time-consuming adventure, if not impossible. Consequently, thin cylindrical shells are designed conservatively using the knockdown factor approach that accommodates the uncertainties associated with the imperfections present in the cylinders; almost all the design codes follow this approach explicitly or implicitly. However, cylindrical shells can be designed more efficiently by making them insensitive to imperfections ...


Optimization And Technology-Based Strategies To Improve Public Transit Performance Accounting For Demand Distribution, Charalampos Sipetas Apr 2021

Optimization And Technology-Based Strategies To Improve Public Transit Performance Accounting For Demand Distribution, Charalampos Sipetas

Doctoral Dissertations

Public transit is important to societies worldwide. The operation of public transit systems is generally associated with great benefits for the users, but there are also cases in which these systems demonstrate inefficient performance. Quantifying transit performance is an important area of research over the last decades. This dissertation presents models to improve transit system performance through optimization techniques and new technologies, recognizing the effects of non-uniform distribution of demand over space and time. The contributions span fixed route transit services and on-demand transit, as well as models for flexible transit operations that lie in between.

Regarding fixed route systems ...


A Generalized Method For Predictive Simulation-Based Lower Limb Prosthesis Design, Mark Price Apr 2021

A Generalized Method For Predictive Simulation-Based Lower Limb Prosthesis Design, Mark Price

Doctoral Dissertations

Lower limb prostheses are designed to replace the functions and form of the missing biological anatomy. These functions are hypothesized to improve user outcome measures which are negatively affected by receiving an amputation – such as metabolic cost of transport, preferred walking speed, and perceived discomfort during walking. However, the effect of these design functions on the targeted outcome measures is highly variable, suggesting that these relationships are not fully understood. Biomechanics simulation and modeling tools are increasingly capable of analyzing the effects of a design on the resulting user gait. In this work, prothesis-aided gait is optimized in simulation to ...


Electrospinning Fibers Via Complex Coacervation, Xiangxi Meng Apr 2021

Electrospinning Fibers Via Complex Coacervation, Xiangxi Meng

Doctoral Dissertations

Electrospun fibers are high-surface-area materials widely used in applications ranging from batteries to wound dressings. Typically, an electrospinning precursor solution is prepared by dissolving a high-molecular-weight polymer in an organic solvent to form a sufficiently entangled solution. Our approach bypasses the requirement for entanglements and completely avoids toxic chemicals by focusing on using an aqueous complex coacervates solution. Coacervates are a dense, polymer-rich liquid phase resulting from the associative electrostatic complexation of oppositely charged macroions.

We were the first to demonstrate that liquid complex coacervates could be successfully electrospun into polyelectrolyte complex (PEC) fibers. A canonical coacervate system was formed ...


Cold-Formed Steel Stud Assemblies Bearing On Concrete Slabs, Abbas Joorabchian Apr 2021

Cold-Formed Steel Stud Assemblies Bearing On Concrete Slabs, Abbas Joorabchian

Doctoral Dissertations

Cold-formed steel (CFS) bearing walls are frequently installed on concrete slabs, which do not provide perfectly rigid and uniform bearing conditions. Existing design guidance assumes bearing conditions have no impact on the axial capacity, though cold-formed steel compressive members are particularly susceptible to end conditions. Studs are typically installed at the edge of concrete slabs, which is prone to spalling and geometric irregularities. Moreover, they are occasionally installed inadvertently overhanging from concrete slabs. In this research project, the impact of non-uniform and partial bearing conditions on the axial strength of cold-formed steel wall assemblies is identified and characterized experimentally and ...


Enabling Iot Authentication, Privacy And Security Via Blockchain, Md Nazmul Islam Apr 2021

Enabling Iot Authentication, Privacy And Security Via Blockchain, Md Nazmul Islam

Doctoral Dissertations

Although low-power and Internet-connected gadgets and sensors are increasingly integrated into our lives, the optimal design of these systems remains an issue. In particular, authentication, privacy, security, and performance are critical success factors. Furthermore, with emerging research areas such as autonomous cars, advanced manufacturing, smart cities, and building, usage of the Internet of Things (IoT) devices is expected to skyrocket. A single compromised node can be turned into a malicious one that brings down whole systems or causes disasters in safety-critical applications. This dissertation addresses the critical problems of (i) device management, (ii) data management, and (iii) service management in ...


Considerations For The Design Optimization Of Floating Offshore Wind Turbine Blades, Evan M. Gaertner Dec 2020

Considerations For The Design Optimization Of Floating Offshore Wind Turbine Blades, Evan M. Gaertner

Doctoral Dissertations

Floating offshore wind turbines are an immature technology with relatively high costs and risk associated with deployment. Of the few floating wind turbine prototypes and demonstration projects deployed in real metocean conditions, all have used standard turbines design for onshore or offshore fixed bottom conditions. This neglects the unique unsteady aerodynamics brought on by floating support structure motion. While the floating platform has been designed and optimized for a given rotor, the global system is suboptimal due to the rotor operating in conditions outside of which it was design for. If the potential offered by floating wind turbines is to ...


Experimental Study Of Viscoelastic Fluid-Structure Interactions, Anita Anup Dey Dec 2020

Experimental Study Of Viscoelastic Fluid-Structure Interactions, Anita Anup Dey

Doctoral Dissertations

It is well known that when a flexible or flexibly-mounted structure is placed perpendicular to a Newtonian fluid flow, it can oscillate due to the shedding of vortices at high Reynolds numbers. Unlike Newtonian fluids, viscoelastic fluid flow can become unstable even at infinitesimal Reynolds numbers due to a purely elastic flow instability occurring at large Weissenberg numbers. This thesis focuses on exploring the mechanisms of viscoelastic fluid-structure interactions (VFSI) through experimental investigations on several different combinations of flexible and flexibly-mounted circular cylinders, micro and macro-scale cantilevered beams and viscoelastic fluids such as wormlike micelle solutions and polymer solutions.

VFSI ...


System Design And Implementation For Hybrid Network Function Virtualization, Xuzhi Zhang Dec 2020

System Design And Implementation For Hybrid Network Function Virtualization, Xuzhi Zhang

Doctoral Dissertations

With the application of virtualization technology in computer networks, many new research areas and techniques have been explored, such as network function virtualization (NFV). A significant benefit of virtualization is that it reduces the cost of a network system and increases its flexibility. Due to the increasing complexity of the network environment and constantly improving network scale and bandwidth, it is imperative to aim for higher performance, extensibility, and flexibility in the future network systems. In this dissertation, hybrid NFV platforms applying virtualization technology are proposed. We further explore the techniques used to improve the performance, scalability and resilience of ...


Engineering Mesothelin-Binding Proteins As Targeted Cancer Diagnostics And Therapeutics, Allison Rita Sirois Dec 2020

Engineering Mesothelin-Binding Proteins As Targeted Cancer Diagnostics And Therapeutics, Allison Rita Sirois

Doctoral Dissertations

Cancer is a significant global health concern; and traditional therapies, including chemotherapeutics, are often simultaneously toxic yet ineffective. There is a critical need to develop targeted cancer therapeutics which specifically inhibit molecules or molecular pathways essential for tumor growth and maintenance. Furthermore, a targeted therapy is only effective when a patient's tumor expresses the molecular target; therefore, companion diagnostics, including molecular imaging agents, are a necessary counterpart of targeted therapies.

Mesothelin (MSLN) is a cell surface protein overexpressed in numerous cancers, including triple-negative breast, pancreatic, ovarian, liver, and lung, with limited expression in normal tissues. Aberrant MSLN expression promotes ...


Performance Evaluation Of Classical And Quantum Communication Systems, Gayane Vardoyan Dec 2020

Performance Evaluation Of Classical And Quantum Communication Systems, Gayane Vardoyan

Doctoral Dissertations

The Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) is a robust and reliable method used to transport data across a network. Many variants of TCP exist, e.g., Scalable TCP, CUBIC, and H-TCP. While some of them have been studied from empirical and theoretical perspectives, others have been less amenable to a thorough mathematical analysis. Moreover, some of the more popular variants had not been analyzed in the context of the high-speed environments for which they were designed. To address this issue, we develop a generalized modeling technique for TCP congestion control under the assumption of high bandwidth-delay product. In a separate contribution ...


Controlled Membrane Remodeling By Nanospheres And Nanorods: Experiments Targeting The Design Principles For Membrane-Based Materials, Sarah Zuraw-Weston Dec 2020

Controlled Membrane Remodeling By Nanospheres And Nanorods: Experiments Targeting The Design Principles For Membrane-Based Materials, Sarah Zuraw-Weston

Doctoral Dissertations

In this thesis we explore two experimental systems probing the interactions of nanoparticles with lipid bilayer membranes. Inspired by the ability of cell membranes to alter their shape in response to bound particles, we report two experimental studies: one of nanospheres the other of long, slender nano-rods binding to lipid bilayer vesicles and altering the membrane shape. Our work illuminates the role of particle geometry, particle concentration, adhesion strength and membrane tension in how membrane morphology is determined. We combine giant unilamellar vesicles with oppositely charged nanoparticles, carefully tuning adhesion strength, membrane tension and particle concentration.

In the case of ...


Micro-Physiological Models To Mimic Mucosal Barrier Complexity Of The Human Intestine In Vitro, Abhinav Sharma Dec 2020

Micro-Physiological Models To Mimic Mucosal Barrier Complexity Of The Human Intestine In Vitro, Abhinav Sharma

Doctoral Dissertations

The mucosal barrier in the intestine is vital to maintain selective absorption of nutrients while protecting internal tissues and maintaining symbiotic relationship with luminal microbiota. This bio-barrier consists of a cellular epithelial barrier and an acellular mucus barrier. Secreted mucus regulates barrier function via in situ biochemical and biophysical interaction with luminal content that continually evolves during digestion and absorption. Increasing evidence suggests that a mucus barrier is indispensable to maintain homeostasis in the gastrointestinal tract. However, the importance of mucus barrier is largely underrated for in vitro mucosal tissue modeling. The major gap is the lack of experimental material ...


Nano- And Micro-Structured Temperature-Sensitive Hydrogels For Rapidly Responsive Devices, Qi Lu Jul 2020

Nano- And Micro-Structured Temperature-Sensitive Hydrogels For Rapidly Responsive Devices, Qi Lu

Doctoral Dissertations

This thesis aims to extend the understanding and explore the application of temperature-responsive hydrogel systems by integrating microelectromechanical systems (MEMS). Stimuli-responsive hydrogel systems are immensely investigated and applied in numerous fields, and interfacing with micro- and nano-fabrication techniques will open up more possibilities.

In Chapter 2, the first biologically relevant, in vitro cell stretching device based on hydrogel surface instability was developed. This dynamic platform is constructed by embedding micro-heater devices under temperature-responsive surface-attached hydrogels. The fast and regional temperature change actuates the stretching and relaxation of the seeded human artery smooth muscle cell (HASMC) via controllable surface creasing instability ...


Ultra-Wideband True-Time-Delay Beamforming Networks In A Compact Package, Chris Merola Jul 2020

Ultra-Wideband True-Time-Delay Beamforming Networks In A Compact Package, Chris Merola

Doctoral Dissertations

The push for commercial technologies such as 5G Massive MIMO, and consumer broadband internet via low-earth-orbit satellite, drive a need for low cost phased array antenna technologies. A major obstacle in bringing this technology to market is the cost and complexity of the phased array antenna aperture and the required beamforming or multi-beamforming network. This dissertation presents an efficient, reliable, low-cost and mass-manufacturable multi-beamforming network solution. In accomplishing this, a new class of cavity-based, true-time delay multi-beamformer was devised and investigated. Rotman lens optics are implemented for broadband and low phase-error response. The presented topology offers reduction in size and ...


Design And Implementation Of Path Finding And Verification In The Internet, Hao Cai Jul 2020

Design And Implementation Of Path Finding And Verification In The Internet, Hao Cai

Doctoral Dissertations

In the Internet, network traffic between endpoints typically follows one path that is determined by the control plane. Endpoints have little control over the choice of which path their network traffic takes and little ability to verify if the traffic indeed follows a specific path. With the emergence of software-defined networking (SDN), more control over connections can be exercised, and thus the opportunity for novel solutions exists. However, there remain concerns about the attack surface exposed by fine-grained control, which may allow attackers to inject and redirect traffic.

To address these opportunities and concerns, we consider two specific challenges: (1 ...


Improving Computer Network Operations Through Automated Interpretation Of State, Abhishek Dwaraki Jul 2020

Improving Computer Network Operations Through Automated Interpretation Of State, Abhishek Dwaraki

Doctoral Dissertations

Networked systems today are hyper-scaled entities that provide core functionality for distributed services and applications spanning personal, business, and government use. It is critical to maintain correct operation of these networks to avoid adverse business outcomes. The advent of programmable networks has provided much needed fine-grained network control, enabling providers and operators alike to build some innovative networking architectures and solutions. At the same time, they have given rise to new challenges in network management. These architectures, coupled with a multitude of devices, protocols, virtual overlays on top of physical data-plane etc. make network management a highly challenging task. Existing ...


Sequence Control Of Complex Coacervation, Li-Wei Chang Jul 2020

Sequence Control Of Complex Coacervation, Li-Wei Chang

Doctoral Dissertations

Complex coacervation is a liquid-liquid phase separation driven by the complexation of oppositely charged polyelectrolytes. The resulting coacervate phase has been used for many applications, such as underwater adhesives, drug delivery, food and personal care products. There also has been increasing interest in coacervate-like droplets occurring in biological systems. The majority of these “membraneless organelles” involve a combination of intrinsically-disordered proteins and RNA, and phase separate due to long-range charge effects and short-range hydrophobic effects. While evolution has optimized the self-assembly of these types of biological polymers, our ability to design such materials remains limited, in part because the relevant ...


Development And Characterization Of Robust And Cost-Effective Catalysts For Selective Biomass Upgrading To Fuels And Chemicals By Deoxydehydration, Bryan E. Sharkey Jul 2020

Development And Characterization Of Robust And Cost-Effective Catalysts For Selective Biomass Upgrading To Fuels And Chemicals By Deoxydehydration, Bryan E. Sharkey

Doctoral Dissertations

The use of biomass-derived ligno-cellulose as a possible alternative source of fuels and chemicals to fossil-based hydrocarbons, however, biomass offers many challenges based on processing and its high oxygen content. One promising upgrading route is deoxydehydration, a reaction which combines a deoxygenation by a sacrificial reductant and dehydration in a single step to selectively convert vicinal diols into an olefin. This reaction is highly selective when using homogeneous oxo-rhenium catalysts, which can easily undergo the necessary changes in coordination and oxidation state, however the high cost of rhenium and difficulty of homogeneous catalyst recovery make these catalysts untenable for large ...


Scaling Up The Oxygenic Photogranule (Opg) Wastewater Treatment Process, Joseph G. Gitau Jul 2020

Scaling Up The Oxygenic Photogranule (Opg) Wastewater Treatment Process, Joseph G. Gitau

Doctoral Dissertations

Photogranular biomass has yet to be utilized at large scale for wastewater treatment despite their potential to lower energy demand due to self-aerating capacity in addition to better process control compared to conventional technologies. An evaluation of critical driving factors affecting scaling up has yet to be undertaken. The current generation of oxygenic photogranules under hydrostatic conditions (a deviation from orthodox conditions creating other granules) limit seeding of larger reactors in time and scale. In addition, evaluating the photosynthetic productivity of granules which exist as closely commingled consortia with tightly coupled production and consumption processes, has yet to be undertaken ...


Elucidating Mechanisms Of Metastasis With Implantable Biomaterial Niches, Ryan Adam Carpenter Jul 2020

Elucidating Mechanisms Of Metastasis With Implantable Biomaterial Niches, Ryan Adam Carpenter

Doctoral Dissertations

Metastasis is the leading cause of cancer related deaths, yet it remains the most poorly understood aspect of tumor biology. This can be attributed to the lack of relevant experimental models that can recapitulate the complex and lengthy progression of metastatic relapse observed in patients. Mouse models have been widely used to study cancer, however they are critically limited to study metastasis. Most models generate aggressive metastases in the lung without the use of unique cell lines or specialized injection techniques. This limits the ability to study disseminated tumor cells (DTCs) in other relevant metastasis prone tissues. Prolonged observation of ...


Formal Verification Of Divider And Square-Root Arithmetic Circuits Using Computer Algebra Methods, Atif Yasin Jul 2020

Formal Verification Of Divider And Square-Root Arithmetic Circuits Using Computer Algebra Methods, Atif Yasin

Doctoral Dissertations

A considerable progress has been made in recent years in verification of arithmetic circuits such as multipliers, fused multiply-adders, multiply-accumulate, and other components of arithmetic datapaths, both in integer and finite field domain. However, the verification of hardware dividers and square-root functions have received only a limited attention from the verification community, with a notable exception for theorem provers and other inductive, non-automated systems. Division, square root, and transcendental functions are all tied to the basic Intel architecture and proving correctness of such algorithms is of grave importance. Although belonging to the same iterative-subtract class of architectures, they widely differ ...


Characterization Of A Natural Clayey Silt And The Effects Of Sample Disturbance On Soil Behavior And Engineering Properties, Øyvind Blaker Jul 2020

Characterization Of A Natural Clayey Silt And The Effects Of Sample Disturbance On Soil Behavior And Engineering Properties, Øyvind Blaker

Doctoral Dissertations

Silts are considered a challenging material to deal with in geotechnical engineering design practice and there has been limited research on determining the engineering parameters of silts either by in situ or laboratory testing. This thesis presents results of an extensive research program that investigated the in situ and laboratory behavior of a low plasticity silt deposit at the Norwegian National Geotechnical Test Site at Halden, Norway. Results from multiple in situ tests including: piezocone, pore pressure dissipation, in situ pore pressure measurements, field vane, self-boring pressuremeter and screw plate load tests were synthesized to characterize the Halden silt. Soil ...


Synthesis And Characterization Of Geopolymers Cast And Cured In Saline Water And The Potential Application In Construction Engineering, Xiaonan Ge Jul 2020

Synthesis And Characterization Of Geopolymers Cast And Cured In Saline Water And The Potential Application In Construction Engineering, Xiaonan Ge

Doctoral Dissertations

The characteristics of underwater cast and cured geopolymers were experimentally studied to understand the interactions between geopolymer slurry and curing saline water and pertinent effects on its strength development. Geopolymers were synthesized from a mixture of Class C fly ash and metakaolin, and the influences of two different Si/Al molar ratios (1.78 and 2.00) and four different Na/Al (0.67, 0.80, 0.84, and 1.00) molar ratios were investigated, respectively. The geopolymer slurry was prepared and then cast into porous molds, followed by immediately submerged into 0, 15, and 35 ppt saline solutions (prepared ...


Kinetics Of The Crystal-Melt Phase Transformation In Semicrystalline Polymers, Kiran Subramaniam Iyer Jul 2020

Kinetics Of The Crystal-Melt Phase Transformation In Semicrystalline Polymers, Kiran Subramaniam Iyer

Doctoral Dissertations

The assembly of long-chain polymers into an ordered state is a process that has puzzled polymer scientists for several decades. A process that is largely controlled by the strength of intermolecular attractions in small molecular systems, this crystallization in the case of polymers is controlled by a competition between the aforementioned force of attraction between monomers and the formidable conformational entropy of polymer chains. Any factor that affects this conformational entropy, whether that is an equilibrium thermodynamic factor or a kinetic factor, has the ability to control polymer crystallization. In this thesis, we focus on understanding the underlying kinetic processes ...


Information-Theoretic Limits On Statistical Matching With Applications To Privacy, Nazanin Takbiri Jul 2020

Information-Theoretic Limits On Statistical Matching With Applications To Privacy, Nazanin Takbiri

Doctoral Dissertations

Modern applications significantly enhance the user experience by adapting to each user's individual condition and/or preferences. While this adaptation can greatly improve a user's experience or be essential for the application to work, the exposure of user data to the application presents a significant privacy threat to the users- even when the traces are anonymized (since the statistical matching of an anonymized trace to prior user behavior can identify a user and their habits). Because of the current and growing algorithmic and computational capabilities of adversaries, provable privacy guarantees as a function of the degree of anonymization ...


Resistive Switching Characteristics Of Nanostructured And Solution-Processed Complex Oxide Assemblies, Zimu Zhou May 2020

Resistive Switching Characteristics Of Nanostructured And Solution-Processed Complex Oxide Assemblies, Zimu Zhou

Doctoral Dissertations

Miniaturization of conventional nonvolatile (NVM) memory devices is rapidly approaching the physical limitations of the constituent materials. An emerging random access memory (RAM), nanoscale resistive RAM (RRAM), has the potential to replace conventional nonvolatile memory and could foster novel type of computing due to its fast switching speed, high scalability, and low power consumption. RRAM, or memristors, represent a class of two terminal devices comprising an insulating layer, such as a metal oxide, sandwiched between two terminal electrodes that exhibits two or more distinct resistance states that depend on the history of the applied bias. While the sudden resistance reduction ...


Characterizing Non-Linear Structural, Mechanical, And Volumetric Properties Of Aliphatic And Aromatic Thermosets, Brendan Robert Ondra May 2020

Characterizing Non-Linear Structural, Mechanical, And Volumetric Properties Of Aliphatic And Aromatic Thermosets, Brendan Robert Ondra

Doctoral Dissertations

A unifying theme throughout this dissertation employs advanced experimental mechanics, including the design and development of new instruments, testing techniques, and analysis strategies. Chapter 1 covers the design and development of a new instrument for polymer and composite characterization. More specifically, a bi-fluidic, confining-fluid, pressurizable dilatometer (referred to herein as the BFCF-PVT). Whereas both classical and contemporary confining-fluid type pressurizable dilatometers utilize a bellows and / or piston system along with a Linear Variable Displacement Transducer to apply pressure and track volume changes, the BFCF-PVT that was designed and built utilizes a fluid-fluid interface (composed of two immiscible fluids that have ...


The Effect Of Oxygen On Properties Of Zirconium Metal, Jie Zhao Mar 2020

The Effect Of Oxygen On Properties Of Zirconium Metal, Jie Zhao

Doctoral Dissertations

The influence of oxygen on the thermophysical properties of zirconium has been investigated using MSL-EML (Material Science Laboratory Electromagnetic Levitator) on ISS (International Space Station) in collaboration with NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration), ESA (European Space Agency), and DLR (German Aerospace Center). Zirconium samples with different oxygen concentrations was subjected to multiple melt cycles during which the thermophysical properties, such as density, viscosity and surface tension, have been measured at various undercooled and superheated temperatures. Also, there are melt cycles for verifying the solidification mechanism. Similar samples were found to show anomalous nucleation of the solid for certain ranges ...


Towards Optimized Traffic Provisioning And Adaptive Cache Management For Content Delivery, Aditya Sundarrajan Mar 2020

Towards Optimized Traffic Provisioning And Adaptive Cache Management For Content Delivery, Aditya Sundarrajan

Doctoral Dissertations

Content delivery networks (CDNs) deploy hundreds of thousands of servers around the world to cache and serve trillions of user requests every day for a diverse set of content such as web pages, videos, software downloads and images. In this dissertation, we propose algorithms to provision traffic across cache servers and manage the content they host to achieve performance objectives such as maximizing the cache hit rate, minimizing the bandwidth cost of the network and minimizing the energy consumption of the servers.

Traffic provisioning is the process of determining the set of content domains hosted on the servers. We propose ...