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  • 151.
    Krapohl, David
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Electronics Design.
    Monte Carlo and Charge Transport Simulation of Pixel Detector Systems2015Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This thesis is about simulation of semiconductor X-ray and particledetectors. The simulation of a novel coating for solid state neutrondetectors is discussed as well as the implementation of a simulationframework for hybrid pixel detectors.Today’s most common thermal neutron detectors are proportionalcounters, that use 3He gas in large tubes or multi wire arrays. Globalnuclear disarmament and the increase in use for homeland securityapplications has created a shortage of the gas which poses a problemfor neutron spallation sources that require higher resolution and largersensors. In this thesis a novel material and clean room compatible pro-cess for neutron conversion are discussed. Simulations and fabricationhave been executed and analysed in measurements. It has been proventhat such a device can be fabricated and detect thermal neutrons.Spectral imaging hybrid pixel detectors like the Medipix chipare the most advanced imaging systems currently available. Thesechips are highly sophisticated with several hundreds of transistors perpixel to enable features like multiple thresholds for noise free photoncounting measurements, spectral imaging as well as time of arrivalmeasurements. To analyse and understand the behaviour of differentsensor materials bonded to the chip and to improve development offuture generations of the chip simulations are necessary. Generally, allparts of the detector system are simulated independently. However, itis favourable to have a simulation framework that is able to combineMonte Carlo particle transport, charge transport in the sensor as wellas analogue and digital response of the pixel read-out electronics. Thisthesis aims to develop such a system that has been developed withGeant4 and analytical semiconductor and electronics models. Further-more, it has been verified with data from measurements with severalMedipix and Timepix sensors as well as TCAD simulations.Results show that such a framework is feasible even for imagingsimulations. It shows great promise to be able to be extended withfuture pixel detector designs and semiconductor materials as well asneutron converters to aim for next generation imaging devices.

  • 152.
    Kuzmin, Leonid
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Engineering and Sustainable Development.
    Interfacial kinetic ski friction2010Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    It is no doubt, that the ski glide over the snow is a very complicated object of

    research. However, ski glide is just a one area of many other areas of human

    knowledge. As a rule, the scientists and practitioners, who work in these areas,

    operate with some publicly expressed more or less solid hypotheses. These

    researchers work with one hypothesis until another and a better one comes up.

    Our literature studies and our own observations regarding modern skis

    preparations, did not give us any solid hypotheses, which are able to explain the

    actual form and content of this procedure. The present work is an attempt to reveal

    such hypotheses.

    Conclusion: To achieve an optimal glide on skis with the base (the ski sole)

    made of some high hydrophobic durable polymer, e.g. UHMWPE, PTFE; we only

    have to create an adequate topography (texture) on the ski running surface,

    adequate to the actual snow conditions.

     

  • 153.
    Kvarnlöf, Linda
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Social Sciences.
    Först på plats: Gränsdragningar, positioneringar och emergens i berättelser från olycksplatsen2015Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    When accidents occur, citizens often are the real first responders. This has been acknowledged and studied from an international perspective, particularly in relation to large crises and disasters, but remains relatively unstudied from a Swedish perspective. This thesis takes its point of departure from people who have been emergency callers or witnesses to traffic accidents, studying their actions and interactions at the scene of an accident in terms of boundaries, positioning and emergence. The aim of this thesis is to study how people’s actions in a specific situation are affected by their interactions with both real and imagined others and how their actions are affected by the spatial context. The thesis consists of four individual studies that relate differently to the main aim of the thesis. The first study focuses on first responders’ options to act in a place that simultaneously is the workplace of emergency personnel: the incident site. This study shows how first responders’ options to act are governed in large part by their interaction with emergency personnel and their boundary practices at the incident site. In this study, we apply theories of boundary practices from Nippert-Eng and the concept of boundary work from Gieryn to explain how emergency personnel control their place of work through boundary practices and through that process control those first responders who are present at the site. In other words, people’s actions at the incident site are affected by both the social and the spatial context. The second study focuses on a limited selection of first responders: those who have placed emergency calls. Through interviews with callers and transcriptions of their emergency calls, this study explores how the callers frame their decision to stop and place the call through different presentations of self. These presentations are constructed through moral positioning, in which the callers position themselves and their actions in relation to both real and imagined others. Thus, the callers also construct normative accounts of what is considered a “preferable” and “non-preferable” way to act at the scene of an accident. The third study takes its point of departure from theories and previous research on emergence because they have been used by disaster sociologists to explain how citizens are the real first responders to crises and disasters. Through the concepts of emergent behavior and emergent norms, papers in this research field have argued that people in these situations act according to “new and not-yet-institutionalized behavior guidelines”. In this study, I argue that emergence, in other words, citizens as the real first responders, is also present in everyday emergencies. Through the narratives of citizen first responders, I explore how they frame their actions through different normative narratives. These normative narratives are not necessarily emergent, however. Rather, the interviewees use past experience and presentations of self to justify their actions at the scene of an accident. The fourth study is an ethnographic reflection of the researcher’s place-bounded identity in a field study that revolves around several different places. Rather than focusing on a story of first responders, this study focuses on the researcher’s, i.e., my own, story from the scene of an accident, the fire truck and the fire station. What I have been able to study through these different studies are stories of actions rather than “actual” actions or behaviors. In these stories, it becomes clear that first responders relate to both a social and spatial context as they provide accounts of their actions at the scene of an accident. They relate to a social context because they frame their actions through their interactions with different actors and position themselves in relation to those actors—and in relation to a spatial context. That is, they perform their actions in a place that is someone else’s place of work, with jurisdictional claims of both legitimacy and control. In summary, this thesis contributes a deeper knowledge of how citizen first responders interpret, understand and tell the story of their actions at the scene of an accident. The contribution considers the fact that citizen first responders are something of a “blind spot”, not only in the field of emergency research but also for emergency personnel who do not always acknowledge the experience of first responders at the scene of accidents.

  • 154.
    Lakew, Nathan
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Information and Communication systems.
    Being-human in the world of digital artifacts: holistic rethinking of design practices2016Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This  thesis  conducts  a  philosophical,  theoretical, and  practical  exploration  of digital technology design to examine how digital technologies can fulfill our two-facet of existentiality – identified in the thesis as belonginess and novelty. By belonginess, I identify human’s innate need for a feeling of connectedness and harmony with the self, others, and the natural world. The word novelty implies the human interest in exploration, invention, and desire for new experiences. This research suggests that contemporary  digital  technologies  are  largely  novelty  need-oriented,  while  our belonginess  need  is  either  ignored  or  its  growth  curtailed.  The  research  question presented in this thesis is how and why can design enable digital technologies to mediate aligned  existentiality?  With  this  broad  question,  I  will  argue  that  an  alignment between digital technologies and our two-facet of existentiality can be met through refocused design practices.  Strong arguments have been forwarded that novelty focused digital technologies can reduce our existential  needs of belonginess. Digital technologies are leading consumerist  commodities  associated  with  creating  unrelenting  demand  for  new experiences.  The  search  for  constant  stimulation  and  novelty  has  resulted  in  a fragmented and alienated state of being-human where the only way of feeling a sense of belonging comes from consuming more novel experiences. As contemporary everyday life is increasingly intertwined with digital technologies, their effect on our way of being-human becomes even more notable.  Against  this  background,  the  research  attempts  to  ‘bring  back’  our  needs  of belonginess to an equal footing with novelty in digital technologies. I have examined the  current  digital  technology  design’s  philosophical,  theoretical,  and  practical foundations  to  refocus  design,  from  its  too  strong focus  on  developing  novelty experiences  to  mediating  aligned  existentiality.  With  the  aim  of  refocusing  the design  role,  a  theoretical  framework  based  on  holism  has  emerged  that  could provide design a background to focus on mediating aligned existentiality. Primarily ivinformed by three thinkers – Marin Heidegger, Karl Marx, and John Dewey – the proposed holistic theoretical framework aims to provide design with a basis to (1) embed belonginess values in digital technologies (2) redirect digital technologies from  alienating  values  such  as  consumerism,  and  (3)  provide  a  mediating materiality for digital technologies to advance aligned existentiality while in use. The  thesis  further  illustrates  the  proposed  holistic  dimensions  –  philosophy, theory, and practice – using three empirical materials. I argue that the proposed holistic foundation for design is also aligned with how digital technologies are being used in the everyday lifeworld. Consequently, by freeing design from its traditional responsibility of making technically savvy and novel artifacts and refocusing its role to mediating aligned existentiality, design can itself be used to support our being-human in the world of digital artifacts.

  • 155.
    Landstedt, Evelina
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Health Sciences.
    Life circumstances and adolescent mental health: Perceptions, associations and a gender analysis2010Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Despite a well-documented gender pattern of adolescent mental health, public health research investigating possible influencing factors from a gender-theoretical approach is scarce. This study aimed to explore what factors and circumstances are related to adolescent mental health and to apply a gender analysis to the findings in order to improve the understanding of the relationships between life circumstances and the gendered patterning of mental health among young people.

     

    The study population was 16-19-year-old Swedish students and data was collected by means of focus groups (N=29) and self-administered questionnaires (N=1,663, 78.3% response rate) in school settings. Mental health problems were defined in a broad sense including the adolescents’ own understandings, perceived stress, psychological distress and deliberate self-harm.

     

    The mental health problems of perceived stress, psychological distress and deliberate self-harm were twice as common among girls as boys. The findings suggest that adolescent mental health is associated with the life circumstances of social relationships, demands and responsibility taking and experiences of violence and harassment.  Supportive relationships with friends, family and teachers were found to be of importance to positive mental health, whereas poor social relationships, loneliness and lack of influence were associated with mental health problems.  Perceived demands and responsibility taking regarding school work, relationships, future plans, appearance and financial issues were strongly related to mental health problems, particularly among girls regardless of social class. The results indicate that physical violence, sexual assault, bullying and sexual harassment are severe risk factors for mental health problems in young people. Boys and girls experienced different types of violence, and the victim-perpetrator relationships of physical violence differed. These diverging experiences appeared to influence the associations with mental health problems in boys and girls.

     

    A gender analysis provides the tools to gain knowledge about the ways that boys’ and girls’ lives are shaped by gender relations and constructions at different levels in society and how these life circumstances represent risk- or protective factors for mental health. For example, unequal power structures and the ways girls are expected to ‘do’ femininity likely influence their life circumstances in ways that place them at greater risk of mental health problems. Hegemonic constructions of masculinity and advantaged positions likely contribute to life circumstances that are positive for mental health but are also implying risk factors for poor mental health among boys, e.g., violence. It is also important to recognise how the intertwined cultural and structural aspects of gender and social class influence the lives and mental health of boys and girls. In conclusion, gendered and class-related mechanisms at the different levels in society influence the distribution of risk factors unevenly among boys and girls, which could be a possible explanation for the gender differences in reports of perceived stress, psychological distress and deliberate self-harm.

     

    The likelihood of gender and socioeconomic differences in mental health problems should be taken into account in prevention and health promotion strategies at all levels in society. A greater awareness about gender relations and the gendered social circumstances under which young people live is required. The school environment is an important arena with respect to prevention and health promotion. There is also a need for a joint action against violence and harassment at all levels in society. Implications do not only concern young people; social policy and legislation should focus on reducing gender and class inequalities in general.

  • 156.
    Langeborg, Linda
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Psychology and Social Work.
    Anchoring biases in estimations of age, weight and height2019Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The main purpose of this thesis was to study the circumstances under which anchoring biases occur for estimation of age, weight and height. Paper I investigated accuracy and biases in age estimates made by salespersons with experience in age estimation, compared to a control group without any similar experience. The accuracy in age estimates of young target persons (15-24 years old) made by salespersons was higher than that of control persons. Moreover, the salespersons demonstrated less overestimation of the age of younger target persons, and whereas the control group own-anchored in their age estimates, the salespersons did not. Paper II and IV investigated gender differences in the tendency to own-anchor in within- and cross-gender estimates of age, weight and height. Both papers found that women own-anchor spontaneously both within and across gender, whereas men for the most part own-anchor only in their estimates of other men. Paper IV also investigated the possibility to increase own-anchoring by priming the participants’ use of their own characteristics in their estimation of age, weight and height. Elaborated similarity priming (asking the participants to state their estimates in relation to their own characteristics) did influence the estimates, by increasing the participants’ tendency to own-anchor. Paper III aimed to investigate whether standard anchoring effects (i.e., assimilation towards explicit, experimenter-provided comparison values) occur for estimations of age and quantities – estimations based on visual stimuli and made with a higher degree of certainty as compared to the judgments traditionally used in the standard anchoring paradigm. Anchor effects were found for both age estimations and quantity estimations, and were not affected by neither cognitive load nor source credibility.

  • 157.
    Larsson, Anders
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Social Sciences.
    Att vara – tillsammans: Människosyn och medborgarskapsideal i den politiska idéhistorien2011Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This thesis is focused on two phenomena: normative citizenship ideals and onto-logical notions of man. The study is an inductive search for different attributes to describe a variation of these phenomena. The search is conducted from several different perspectives: Current research within citizenship theory, history in a material sense, the history of political ideas, the philosophy of science and thematic analyses of important aspects of the two phenomena.

    Throughout the thesis attributes are collected and sorted in order to build typologies that can define the variation.

    In the end the attributes of normative citizenship ideals are sorted into three groups. The ideals are explained in three ways: why they came in to existence, how the transition from one ideal to another took place and how the idealistic content of the ideals were transformed.

    The attributes of ontological notions of man are sorted into sex types and four of them are defined to have relevance for an existing variation today.

    Finally the relations between the two typologies are analyzed and ten combinations are found to be possibly useful in studies of contemporary societal contexts.

    Together, the results are contributing to theories of citizenship.

    Apart from the results of the study it is argued for a broader definition of politics in political science, for more specific ways to handle egalitarian questions in the field rights of man / citizenship rights and finally against the possibility of a neutral order, for example a neutral state.

  • 158.
    Larsson, Aron
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Information Technology and Media.
    Essays on theories and applications of decision analysis in imprecise domains2008Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
  • 159.
    Larsson, Johan
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Engineering and Sustainable Development.
    Leadership for Quality, Effectiveness and Health2010Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Leadership, quality, effectiveness and health are important factors in the achievement of organisational success. Three questions are addressed to study these elements:

    1. How do leadership values relate to leadership behaviours, quality methodologies and health in organisations?

    2. How do leadership behaviours relate to effectiveness and health in organisations?

    3. How can leadership tools be designed and used to promote health in organisations?

    The research is based on five studies from three research projects. This research is reported in five papers. Study I concerned eight organisations in the middle of Sweden; the focus was on leadership values and behaviours. Study II concerned three successful organisations that received the award, ‘Sweden’s number one workplace’. Focus in this study was mainly on leadership behaviours. Study III combined results from Studies I and II with a focus on successful leadership behaviours. Study IV concerned the eight organisations in Study I. A leadership tool in the form of a Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) model was developed and evaluated. Study V was of two organisations in Sweden; the focus in that work was on the use of a leadership tool control chart designed to give managers statistically valid early warning signals about health in their organisations. Theory X and Y together with the three-dimensional leadership behaviour theory were used to assess leadership values and behaviours. The theory surrounding PDSA and control charts were used to develop leadership tools. The dimension of health is defined from a salutogenic humanistic perspective; which emphasizes individual well-being. The dimension of quality is defined as the ability to satisfy or exceed needs and expectations. Effectiveness is defined as the extent to which externally and internally defined objectives are fulfilled.

    Both qualitative and quantitative research methods were used. Interviews, seminars with employees, collection of human resource and effectiveness figures, and questionnaires completed by managers and subordinates were used to collect data.

    Managers with more Theory Y-oriented leadership values were rated by subordinates as high concerning quality methodologies and leadership behaviour dimensions. The subordinates of these managers tended to be healthier.

    Two of the studies identified common groups of leadership behaviours in effective and healthy organisations: strategy and vision, communication and information, authority and responsibility, learning culture, worker conversations, plainness and simplicity, humanity and trust, walking around and reflective personal leadership.

    These leadership behaviours fit into a leadership profile where all three of the dimensions of structure, relation and change are present. Of the three, the relation dimension is strongest and concluded to be a universal dimension.

    The developed PDSA model seems to be a leadership tool that influences both leadership values and behaviour, particularly in the area of relation-oriented leadership behaviours. An early warning system built on CUSUM- and Shewhartcharts concerning the health indicators of self-assessed general health and new sickcases per employee was also found to be a powerful and usable leadership tool.

    For future research, the explorative research findings can be quantitatively tested using representative and preferably cross-national data, with a longitudinal design.

  • 160.
    Lawal, Najeem
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Information Technology and Media.
    Memory Synthesis for FPGA Implementation of Real-Time Video Processing Systems2009Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    In this thesis, both a method and a tool to enable efficient memory synthesis for real-time video processing systems on field programmable logic array are presented. In real-time video processing system (RTVPS), a set of operations are repetitively performed on every image frame in a video stream. These operations are usually computationally intensive and, depending on the video resolution, can also be very data transfer dominated. These operations, which often require data from several consecutive frames and many rows of data within each frame, must be performed accurately and under real-time constraints as the results greatly affect the accuracy of application. Application domains of these systems include machine vision, object recognition and tracking, visual enhancement and surveillance.

    Developments in field programmable gate arrays (FPGAs) have been the motivation for choosing them as the platform for implementing RTVPS. Essential logic resources required in RTVPS operations are currently available and are optimized and embedded in modern FPGAs. One such resource is the embedded memory used for data buffering during real-time video processing. Each data buffer corresponds to a row of pixels in a video frame, which is allocated using a synthesis tool that performs the mapping of buffers to embedded memories. This approach has been investigated and proven to be inefficient. An efficient alternative employing resource sharing and allocation width pipelining will be discussed in this thesis.

    A method for the optimised use of these embedded memories and, additionally, a tool supporting automatic generation of hardware descriptions language (HDL) modules for the synthesis of the memories according to the developed method are the main focus of this thesis. This method consists of the memory architecture, allocation and addressing. The central objective of this method is the optimised use of embedded memories in the process of buffering data on-chip for an RVTPS operation. The developed software tool is an environment for generating HDL codes implementing the memory sub-components.

    The tool integrates with the Interface and Memory Modelling (IMEM) tools in such a way that the IMEM’s output - the memory requirements of a RTVPS - is imported and processed in order to generate the HDL codes. IMEM is based on the philosophy that the memory requirements of an RTVPS can be modelled and synthesized separately from the development of the core RTVPS algorithm thus freeing the designer to focus on the development of the algorithm while relying on IMEM for the implementation of memory sub-components.

  • 161.
    Li, Yun
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Information and Communication systems.
    Coding of Three-dimensional Video Content: Diffusion-based Coding of Depth Images and Displacement Intra-Coding of Plenoptic Contents2015Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    In recent years, the three-dimensional (3D) movie industry has reaped massive commercial success in the theaters. With the advancement of display technologies, more experienced capturing and generation of 3D contents, TV broadcasting, movies, and games in 3D have entered home entertainment, and it is likely that 3D applications will play an important role in many aspects of people's life in a not distant future. 3D video contents contain at least two views from different perspectives for the left and the right eye of viewers. The amount of coded information is doubled if these views are encoded separately. Moreover, for multi-view displays (i.e. different perspectives of a scene in 3D are presented to the viewer at the same time through different angles), either video streams of all the required views must be transmitted to the receiver, or the displays must synthesize the missing views with a subset of the views. The latter approach has been widely proposed to reduce the amount of data being transmitted and make data adjustable to 3D-displays. The virtual views can be synthesized by the Depth Image Based Rendering (DIBR) approach from textures and associated depth images. However, it is still the case that the amount of information for the textures plus the depths presents a significant challenge for the network transmission capacity. Compression techniques are vital to facilitate the transmission. In addition to multi-view and multi-view plus depth for reproducing 3D, light field techniques have recently become a hot topic. The light field capturing aims at acquiring not only spatial but also angular information of a view, and an ideal light field rendering device should be such that the viewers would perceive it as looking through a window. Thus, the light field techniques are a step forward to provide us with a more authentic perception of 3D. Among many light field capturing approaches, focused plenoptic capturing is a solution that utilize microlens arrays. The plenoptic cameras are also portable and commercially available. Multi-view and refocusing can be obtained during post-production from these cameras. However, the captured plenoptic images are of a large size and contain significant amount of a redundant information. An efficient compression of the above mentioned contents will, therefore, increase the availability of content access and provide a better quality experience under the same network capacity constraints. In this thesis, the compression of depth images and of plenoptic contents captured by focused plenoptic cameras are addressed. The depth images can be assumed to be piece-wise smooth. Starting from the properties of depth images, a novel depth image model based on edges and sparse samples is presented, which may also be utilized for depth image post-processing. Based on this model, a depth image coding scheme that explicitly encodes the locations of depth edges is proposed, and the coding scheme has a scalable structure. Furthermore, a compression scheme for block-based 3D-HEVC is also devised, in which diffusion is used for intra prediction. In addition to the proposed schemes, the thesis illustrates several evaluation methodologies, especially the subjective test of the stimulus-comparison method. This is suitable for evaluating the quality of two impaired images, as the objective metrics are inaccurate with respect to synthesized views. For the compression of plenoptic contents, displacement intra prediction with more than one hypothesis is applied and implemented in the HEVC for an efficient prediction. In addition, a scalable coding approach utilizing a sparse set and disparities is introduced for the coding of focused plenoptic images. The MPEG test sequences were used for the evaluation of the proposed depth image compression, and public available plenoptic image and video contents were applied to the assessment of the proposed plenoptic compression. For depth image coding, the results showed that virtual views synthesized from post-processed depth images by using the proposed model are better than those synthesized from original depth images. More importantly, the proposed coding schemes using such a model produced better synthesized views than the state of the art schemes. For the plenoptic contents, the proposed scheme achieved an efficient prediction and reduced the bit rate significantly while providing coding and rendering scalability. As a result, the outcome of the thesis can lead to improving quality of the 3DTV experience and facilitate the development of 3D applications in general.

  • 162.
    Lidén, Gustav
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Social Sciences.
    Från demokrati till e-demokrati: En jämförande studie av demokratiutveckling i det moderna samhället2011Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This mainly deductive study examines what factors explain the variation of e-democracy and if, why a causal pathway exists. The deductive feature is carried out through examining the predictions of the modernization theory, testing hypotheses concerning the link between economic development and wealth in relation to e-democracy. Deriving from a theoretical point of departure where e-democracy is conceptualized with the help of democratic theory, this phenomenon is studied in three different but linked empirical parts. A cross-sectional global study did establish a relationship between some of the indicators derived from the theory; however, the magnitude of the explanatory power was lower at the level of e-democracy than at the level of democracy. A cross-sectional national study of all Sweden’s municipalities did show that especially high levels of education were clearly related to high levels of e-democracy. Approaching the questions of causal mechanisms and deviations from the found pattern, case studies did emphasize that the linkage between the structural conditions and actor’s-orientated explanations largely could verify what is deducted from theory. However, the importance of economic possibilities and internal prioritizations inside the political organization was essential for the development of e-democracy and was found through more inductive approaches.

    The main contribution of this thesis is the results that, both on an aggregated and a micro level, verify the theory but also add other important explanations. Another important conclusion is the creation of a model for e-democracy where a complete e-democracy is linked to democratic theory and not only maintains information, discussion, and decision-making processes through information and communication technology but also does this while strengthening political participation and political equality.

  • 163.
    Lilja, Johan
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Engineering and Sustainable Development.
    The Realization of Attractive Quality: Conceptual and practical perspectives within the TQM system2010Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Within the quality community, quality management is often pictured as and referred to as rapidly evolving and continuously learning by interaction with the surrounding world. In general, an ability to evolve and transform is also seen as most desirable and the only choice for long term survival. In line with this picture, quality scholars, consultants, and practitioners strongly accentuate the necessity and great benefits from continuous improvement as well as systematic collection and usage of facts about what customers really value, to guide such improvement. This is reflected in the exhortations “improve continuously”, “focus on the customer” and “base decisions on facts”, found with minor variations in most modern quality literature. Strong exhortations mainly directed outwards, towards the many leaders and organizations out there. Towards leaders and organizations that still have not grasped the necessity and great winnings from continuous improvement, that are still not fully applying modern quality initiatives like Total Quality Management (TQM).

     

    However, while seemingly being busy exhorting others, doubts have been increasingly raised concerning whether TQM, as currently applied, actually lives up to these exhortations. Does TQM itself continuously improve and evolve? Is the current application of TQM really taking into account facts in the surrounding world about what customers value?

     

    When viewing TQM as a system, as now is commonly done, the problem implied is a lack of system goal fulfillment, questioning if the current TQM system’s structure and processes are really purposeful. More specifically the critics highlight the inadequacy of the current reactive one-sided defect avoidance focus, stressing that defects do not matter much if you are making a product no one wants to buy. What can be referred to as “an obsession with error avoidance” is in fact shown to stifle both innovation and value creation.

     

    As for what the TQM system currently is missing, the shortcoming is often referred to as a lack of focus on Attractive Quality. That is, a lack of focus on a different kind of quality elements, often described as being unrelated to the dissatisfaction expressed, but strongly contributing to the customer’s positive emotions, such as delight. The inclusion and realization of Attractive Quality has been widely emphasized as important and urgent for more than 20 years. However, a more systematic inclusion and realization within the TQM system has remained no more than merely “a vision”. A situation seemingly supporting the argument that TQM really has failed in terms of continuously evolving and improving. An inability to learn and adapt that in the long term will jeopardize the survival of the entire TQM system.

     

    This thesis then aims to move “from a vision to reality” both in terms of exploring the realization of Aattractive Qquality within TQM, and in a wider sense towards realizing the desired state of TQM as truly evolving and alive. In doing so the thesis addresses the three questions of what, why and how the vision of a more systematic creation of Aattractive Qquality creation actually should and could be realized within the system of TQM. Among the results presented in this thesis are a new two-dimensional perspective on Attractive Quality and a re-understanding of the TQM system. The thesis also introduces a new methodology called Attraction Detection Study (ADS) as part of the concluding suggestions about how Attractive Quality could be more systematically created within the system of TQM.

     

  • 164.
    Lilja, Lars
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Health Sciences.
    Att normaliseras - vårdares syn på psykiatriska patienter: Mot en djupare förståelse av vårdares attityd till sina patienter2007Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    I samband med industrialismens framväxt inrättades institutioner i större skala. Den ökade mängden omhändertagna på institution vid 1800‐talets slut kan förklaras med fler medicinskt diagnostiserade, en ökad utstötning, lägre tolerans för avvikande beteende, läkarintresse för ett nytt revir, låg utskrivningsfrekvens och hospitaliseringseffekter. Antalet vårdplatser inom den psykiatriska vården minskade under 1900‐talets sista hälft. År 1992 tillsatte regeringen den så kallade psykiatriutredningen som slog fast att personer med kronisk psykiatrisk sjukdom utgjorde en grupp i samhället som karaktäriserades av allvarligt handikappade personer som berövats sina medborgerliga rättigheter och som hade få resurser till sitt förfogande. Psykiatrireformens intentioner genomsyras av bland annat begreppen normalisering och autonomi. De psykiskt funktionshindrades levnadsvillkor skall normaliseras för att öka deras möjligheter att leva som andra, vilket betyder att de ska delta i besluten om sin egen vård och behandling.

    Avhandlingen har sin grund i ett hermeneutiskt perspektiv, det vill säga att människor aldrig kan förstå något helt fördomsfritt eller förutsättningslöst. Förförståelse kan förstås som en form av föraning/förkänsla och första idé om det sökta fenomenet, vilket leder förståelsen i en viss riktning. Perspektivets innebörd är att ingen förståelse kan växa fram förutsättningslöst, dvs. växa fram utan någon på förhand given inställning från forskarens sida. Studiens övergripande syfte är att belysa vårdares attityd till personer med psykiska symtom. Avhandlingen består av fyra delarbeten med såväl kvantitativ som kvalitativ design. Data har insamlats med hjälp av frågeformulär, skattningsskalor samt narrativa intervjuer.

    Resultatet i delstudie I visar att fyra typologier som upptäckts i en tidigare kvalitativ intervjustudie existerade (god, ond, tokig och osynlig). Delstudie II visar att vårdarnas syn på inneliggande deprimerade patienter i hög grad bestäms av diagnosen. Syftet med delstudie III var att klargöra om patientens och vårdarens bild av patientens historia, nutid och framtid överensstämde med varandra. Resultatet visar på en tydlig skillnad mellan parterna. I delstudie IV var syftet att belysa före detta patienters upplevelser av att vara inlagda på en psykiatrisk avdelning. Studien visar att de tidigare patienternas upplevelser mestadels var negativa och att de kan tolkas som om det under sin sjukhusvistelse varit utsatta för ett subtilt förtryck.

    För att förstå vårdarnas syn på den drabbade personen kommer resultatet i studien att tolkas utifrån en teoretisk referensram inspirerad av den franske filosofen Michael Foucaults och den ryske filosofen Mikhail Bakhtins texter. Tolkningen visar att vårdarna har en tendens att undvika “annanhet” (otherness) och därigenom se patienten enbart som en karaktär, en typologi. Härigenom kommer patienten att placeras i ett ”ingenmansland”, i en kontext där han/hon inte tillhör vårdargemenskapen samtidigt som kontakten med den gamla privata gemenskapen upphör. Genom att se patienten som ett enskilt fall undviker vårdarna att se det lidande som finns i ”rummet” och därigenom blir det ”rum” som skapas till en ”isvärld” som inte är livsbejakande och därför ohälsosam för patienten. Att förändra vårdarnas attityder är en långvarig samhällelig process som kräver inte bara resurser i form av utbildning och handledning utan kanske främst utrymme för kontinuerlig diskussion och debatt. Grunden för förändringen finns redan idag i psykiatrireformens ideala normaliseringsbegrepp. Kravet är dock att politiker och tjänstemän inom vård och omsorg börjar leva upp till lagens intentioner. Detta kräver dock att synen på en person med psykisk sjukdom psykiskt handikapp måste ändras på samma sätt som till exempel synen på homosexuella ändrats från att de varit marginaliserade och levt i ett utanförskap, till att bli sedda som fullvärdiga samhällsmedborgare. För att bryta det strukturella maktmönstret behövs en total samhällelig attitydförändring. Endast en politisk förändring är inte tillräcklig.

  • 165.
    Lind, Andreas
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Natural Sciences, Engineering and Mathematics.
    Holomorphic automorphisms of Danielewski surfaces2009Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    In this thesis we define the notion of an overshear on a Danielewskisurface. Next we show that the group generated by the overshears is dense in the component of the identity of the automorphism group. Moreover, we show that the overshear group has a structure of an amalgamated product, and as consequence of this the overshear group is a proper subgroup of the automorphism group. Finally we classify the R^n-actions, and therefore the one parameter subgroups, of the overshear group. We also show that any Lie subgroup of an amalgamated product can be conjugated to one of the factors of the amalgamated product.

  • 166.
    Lindström, Stefan
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Natural Sciences, Engineering and Mathematics.
    Modelling and simulation of paper structure development2008Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

     

     

     

     

     

    A numerical tool has been developed for particle-level simulations of fibre suspension flows, particularly forming of the fibre network structure of paper sheets in the paper machine. The model considers inert fibres of various equilibrium shapes, and finite stiffness, interacting with each other through normal, frictional, and lubrication forces, and with the surrounding fluid medium through hydrodynamic forces. Fibre–fluid interactions in the non-creeping flow regime are taken into account, and the two-way coupling between the solids and the fluid phases is included by enforcing momentum conservation between phases. The incompressible three-dimensional Navier–Stokes equations are employed tomodel themotion of the fluid medium.

    The validity of the model has been tested by comparing simulation results with experimental data from the literature. It was demonstrated that the model predicts well the motion of isolated fibres in shear flow over a wide range of fibre flexibilities. It was also shown that the model predicts details of the orientation distribution of

     

    multiple, straight, rigid fibres in a sheared suspension. Furthermore, model predictions of the shear viscosity and first normal stress difference were in fair agreement with experimental data found in the literature. Since the model is based solely on first principles physics, quantitative predictions could be made without any parameter fitting.

     

    Based on these validations, a series of simulations have been performed to investigate the basic mechanisms responsible for the development of the stress tensor components for monodispersed, non-Brownian fibres suspended in a Newtonian fluid in shear flow. The effects of fibre aspect ratio, concentration, and inter-particle friction, as well as the tendency of fibre agglomeration, were examined in the nonconcentrated regimes. For the case of well dispersed suspensions, semi-empirical relationships were found between the aforementioned fibre suspension properties, and the steady state apparent shear viscosity, and the first/second normal stress differences.

     

    Finally, simulations have been conducted for the development of paper structures in the forming section of the paper machine. The conditions used for the simulations were retrieved from pilot-scale forming trial data in the literature, and from real pulp fibre analyses. Dewatering was simulated by moving two forming fabrics toward each other through a fibre suspension. Effects of the jet-to-wire speed difference on the fibre orientation anisotropy, the mass density distribution, and three-dimensionality of the fibre network, were investigated. Simulation results showed that the model captures well the essential features of the forming effects on these paper structure parameters, and also posed newquestions on the conventional wisdom of the forming mechanics.

     

     

  • 167.
    Lindvert, Marta
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Business, Economics and Law.
    Resource acquisition and the complexity of social capital: Perspectives from women entrepreneurs in Tanzania and Pakistan2018Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Women entrepreneurs all over the world contribute significantly to innovation, employment opportunities and wealth creation in their respective economies. Despite their importance as drivers of development, there is a lack of research on preconditions for women’s entrepreneurship. In particular, little attention has been given to women’s venturing in developing economies. This is troublesome, since women have the potential to play a crucial role in the development of any society, not least through venturing. Entrepreneurshiphas long been recognized as one of the keys to economic developmentand numerous studies have confirmed its economic value. At the same time, a lack of capital and other resources is a crucial constraint in starting and expanding new businesses, especially in developing economies where the financial markets are often underdeveloped or dysfunctional. Further,previous research shows that women entrepreneurs face particularly high obstacles when searching for capital and other resources, as they have to overcome both formal and informal barriers.

    The aim of this thesis is to contribute to previous knowledge on women’s entrepreneurship in developing countries, by exploring and describing women entrepreneurs’ resource acquisition. The aim is further to explore the role of formal and informal institutions, as well as the role of social capital in relation to resource acquisition. The thesis is based on two field studies, conducted in two different developing contexts – Tanzania and Pakistan. Extended periods of time were spent in these contexts, where data were collected through semi-structured interviews, a questionnaire and participant observation. The focus is on how women entrepreneurs obtain access to financial and other resources. The focus is further on the role of formal and informal institutions in relation to women entrepreneurs as they acquire resources, and the role of social capital in resource acquisition. Special attention is given to contextual preconditions.

    The results from the four papers of this thesis show that the studied groups of entrepreneurs use similar financial behavior. In both contexts, women have almost no access to formal capital from banks, and have to rely on informal sources of capital and resources, mainly from family members. In Tanzania, the microfinance sector plays an important role, and other semi-formal actors (e.g. SACCOs and RoSCAs) are commonly used as well. In Pakistan, the microfinance sector is less developed. There are semi-formal actors that can be used (such as so-called “committees”) but it is more common to use one’s own savings and loans or grants from family members. Further, results show that women entrepreneurs have to navigate through a complex interplay of barriers on both formal and informal levels. Although respondents in both contexts recognize that informal contacts (such as family members, friends, and social networks) are important sources of capital and other resources, they clearly express their desire for reliable, well-functioning, formal financial institutions. Lastly, results confirm that social capital is a crucial factor for entrepreneurs. As women in the studied contexts are excluded from formal finance, they are even more dependent on informal capital, and thereby their ability to use social capital. However, it is remarkable how often their social embeddedness is not only complex but counterproductive. Results show both negative outcomes of, and limited access to, social capital for the studied entrepreneurs.

  • 168.
    Ljungberg, Elisabeth
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Information Technology and Media.
    Ungdomar, Utveckling och Utmaning: Studier av samhälls- och identitetsskapande processer i 1990-talets ungdomspolitik2009Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Society and Identity- Developments and Challenges in Swedish Youth Politics in the 1990´s. There are many ways to describe and value young people’s interest and engagement in politics. While some defend extraparliamentarian activism as an important road to political engagement, others stress the need for young people to become familiar with the political system. These two contradictory views express a common concern for the importance of involving the young in the political process – this is an issue that the system has to deal with. Should the established political system affirm the youths’ active participation and desire to make a change? Is it possible to do this without a loss of respect for democracy? Is it possible to develop democracy without changing it radically Behind these questions, lies the deeper question about how the established democratic system, in practice in the state and municipalities, handle a) the political involvement of youths and b) the transmission of democratic values to new generations. Furthermore, these questions are based on the fundamental assumption that a democratic culture can only be communicated and upheld through processes of political socialization, where norms, knowledge and values are passed on from one generation to the next. In order for this particular kind of communication to succeed, it is crucial that people see their citizenship in a democratic society as an important part of their identity. One of the main functions of the democratic political system is to create and uphold identities and attitudes that are intimately connected to the system itself. Therefore, the political institutions are central actors in the communication process of political socialization. Communication is a paradoxical concept. It is a human activity that everyone is involved in, but few can define unambiguously. Professor James Carey, who analyses the concept in Communication as culture, essays on media and society (1989), introduced the idea of communication as ritual. Although broad in meaning, this definition highlights communication as central in the construction of both society and identity. Society exists and works through the communication between people and because we learn the codes of interaction that exist in the societal context: But, whatever the details of the production and reproduction of social life, it is through communication, through the intergraded relations of symbols and social structure, that societies, or at least those with we are most familiar, are created, maintained, and transformed. In this dissertation, the notion that communication is pivotal in the formation of both society and identities, is fundamental. Communication is the core of democratic development and the passing on of democratic values from one generation to the next. Political socialization is a question of communication processes. Objective and research questions The objective of this dissertation is to investigate how the main actors in the Swedish political system; the state and the municipalities, deal with processes of society- and identity formation. This is achieved through an analysis of the perspectives on political socialization that are expressed by these actors in youth politics in the 1990’s. Three main research questions are central in this dissertation: Do the state and the municipalities understand their role in the process of political socialization as mainly hierachical or interactive? How is the role of the youth construed by these actors? Are they seen as active or passive in the process of political socialization? Do these actors regard political socialization chiefly as a matter of continuation or as development? Over the years, political socialization research has generated different views on the youth, democracy development and the political system. Early research tended to regard the youth as a passive group in a hierarchical political system that acted mainly on behalf of it’s own preservation. This perspective saw political socialization as a matter of teaching the young to assimilate to the existing political system. Later research has shown that the process is more interactive than was previously thought: youths are influenced, but at the same time they also influence others. This shift in perspective raises questions of how the political system construes the process of political socialization, it’s own role in this process, the role the youth and ultimately; how democracy best can be developed. Conclusion The findings of the different studies in this dissertation show an overwhelmingly hierarchical construal of political socialization by the state and the municipalities. The idea of interactivity and development, advocated by later research, is only visible in some of the municipalities. Furthermore, youths are considered as having some political awareness, but this awareness needs to be cultivated through teaching. Therefore, youths are seen as passive receivers in the communicative process of political socialization – and not as active participants. At the same time, –on a rhetorical level–both the state and the municipalities express an ambition to create possibilities for youths to take responsibility and to find their own organizational solutions for political engagement. However, this dissertation also shows that this ambition is nowhere matched by any willingness to change the existing system, if that is what is required in order for the youth to develop own organizational solutions. The state regards the process of political socialization from a perspective of continuation and conservation. Youths are therefore mainly seen as a problem until they have reached a level of political awareness that allows them to function within the existing political system. The municipalities wants to get involved in the political socialization of youths through their “youth-councils”, but it is obvious that the main perspective is one of socialization into the existing political system. In order to be able to participate and have influence on decision-making, youths have to learn the form and the language required by the existing political system. It is not, according to the municipalities, the system that needs to change. The state and the municipalities consider youths as mouldable object that also have the ability to participate and shape society. When the states and municipalities’ assumptions about the youth’s political interests and enthusiasm do not correlate to the youth’s, the process of identity-formation becomes paradoxical. A hierarchical system meets young people who do not want to interact with the system. A system aimed at its own continuation and preservation of the existing order, that mainly aims to teach youths to fit into the system, will meet youths who want to create new forms of organizations. Therefore, when the state and municipalities in the ambition of socializing youths into the political system, shut the door to real participation and influence that would mean actual change and development, it is perhaps not so surprising that some youths canalize their political commitment through extraparliamentary activism. On a rhetorical level everyone applauds ideas of development of the political system. But in reality, the state and the municipalities regard this development as challenging when the suggested changes threatens the established order.

  • 169.
    Ljunggren, Joel
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Chemical Engineering.
    Some Approaches to Eco-Friendly Products from Natural Matrices2020Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Since the onset of the industrial and chemical revolution, humans have caused immense damages to the surrounding flora and fauna. Effective methods for wood protection measures proved to be toxic; fossil fuels contribute to global warming and pesticides can be detected in the air, water, and soil. It is abundantly clear that efforts to find eco-friendly products are needed, while simultaneously providing the necessary incentives for sustainable worldwide development. Using renewable resources play a critical role in this shift towards circular economies.

    Wood has long been used as a renewable resource in high demand, but its susceptibility to attack by wood-decaying fungi mean that most European woods need to be protected against these fungi before outdoor use. We showed that fractionating turpentine, a pulp and paper mill by-product, increased antifungal efficacy by concentrating bioactive oxygenated sesquiterpenes. Based on this result, recombinations of the fractions were shown to exhibit synergistic effects that enable a more efficient product utilisation. In addition, this approach enabled putative identifications of previously unknown Picea abies turpentine constituents present at low levels.

    For a carbon-neutral society, production of biofuels using oleaginous yeast to convert lignocellulosic biomass into fuel has been hailed as a next-generation source of bioenergy. However, lignocellulose biofuel production by microorganisms is not straightforward and one challenge is the formation of microbe-toxic monomers, such as vanillin, during lignin degradation. The oleaginous yeast Cystobasidium laryngis and other potential oil-producing yeasts were screened for their viability and vanillin biotransformation capabilities. To this end, a mass chromatographic peak extraction tool termed TMATE was developed. Vanillyl alcohol was found to be the main product following vanillin degradation.

    The detrimental health and ecological effects of pesticides highlight the urgency for alternative crop protection measures, such as biological insect control and semiochemicals. In this regard, we present an essential step towards understanding the varied chemical ecology of microbe-insect interactions. Our methodology and findings provide cues with high information value that can be used to develop well-informed and potentially sustainable pest management regimes by, for example, the push-pull methodology using live yeasts.

  • 170.
    Llopart Cudié, Xavier
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Information Technology and Media.
    Design and characterization of 64K pixels chips working in single photon processing mode2007Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Progress in CMOS technology and in fine pitch bump bonding has made

    possible the development of high granularity single photon counting detectors for

    X-ray imaging. This thesis studies the design and characterization of three pulse

    processing chips with 65536 square pixels of 55 μm x 55 μm designed in a

    commercial 0.25 μm 6-metal CMOS technology. The 3 chips share the same

    architecture and dimensions and are named Medipix2, Mpix2MXR20 and Timepix.

    The Medipix2 chip is a pixel detector readout chip consisting of 256 x 256

    identical elements, each working in single photon counting mode for positive or

    negative input charge signals. The preamplifier feedback provides compensation

    for detector leakage current on a pixel by pixel basis. Two identical pulse height

    discriminators are used to define an energy window. Every event falling inside the

    energy window is counted with a 13-bit pseudo-random counter. The counter logic,

    based in a shift register, also behaves as the input/output register for the pixel. Each

    cell also has an 8-bit configuration register which allows masking, test-enabling

    and 3-bit individual threshold adjust for each discriminator. The chip can be

    configured in serial mode and readout either serially or in parallel. Measurements

    show an electronic noise ~160 e- rms with a gain of ~9 mV/ke-. The threshold

    spread after equalization of ~120 e- rms brings the full chip minimum detectable

    charge to ~1100 e-. The analog static power consumption is ~8 μW per pixel with

    Vdda=2.2 V.

    The Mpix2MXR20 is an upgraded version of the Medipix2. The main

    changes in the pixel consist of: an improved tolerance to radiation, improved pixel

    to pixel threshold uniformity, and a 14-bit counter with overflow control. The chip

    periphery includes new threshold DACs with smaller step size, improved linearity,

    and better temperature dependence.

    Timepix is an evolution of the Mpix2MXR20 which provides independently

    in each pixel information of arrival time, time-over-threshold or event counting.

    Timepix uses as a time reference an external clock (Ref_Clk) up to 100 MHz which

    is distributed all over the pixel matrix during acquisition mode. The preamplifier is

    improved and there is a single discriminator with 4-bit threshold adjustment in

    order to reduce the minimum detectable charge limit. Measurements show an

    electrical noise ~100 e- rms and a gain of ~16.5 mV/ke-. The threshold spread after

    equalization of ~35 e- rms brings the full chip minimum detectable charge either to

    ~650 e- with a naked chip (i.e. gas detectors) or ~750 e- when bump-bonded to a

    detector. The pixel static power consumption is ~13.5 μW per pixel with

    Vdda=2.2 V and Ref_Clk=80 MHz.

    This family of chips have been used for a wide variety of applications.

    During these studies a number of limitations have come to light. Among those are

    limited energy resolution and surface area. Future developments, such as

    Medipix3, will aim to address those limitations by carefully exploiting

    developments in microelectronics.

  • 171.
    Lodin, Angelica
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Health Sciences.
    Initiation of spleen contraction resulting in natural blood boosting in humans2015Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The spleen has been shown to contract in apneic situations in humans as well as in other diving mammals, expelling its stored red blood cell content into circulation. This natural blood boosting may increase the circulating hemoglobin concentration (Hb) by up to 10%, which would enhance the oxygen carrying capacity and likely increase performance. However, the triggers of this response in humans have not been fully clarified. Study I was therefore focused on the effect of hypoxia as a trigger of spleen contraction. It was found that 20 min of normobaric hypoxic breathing evoked a substantial reduction in spleen volume showing that hypoxia is an important trigger for spleen contraction. Knowing the role of hypoxia, Study II compared two different hypoxic situations – a 2 min apnea and 20 min normobaric hypoxic breathing – which resulted in the same level of arterial hemoglobin desaturation. Apnea evoked a twice as great spleen volume reduction, implying that variables other than hypoxia were likely involved in triggering spleen contraction. This may be hypercapnia which is present during apnea but not during normobaric hypoxic breathing. Study III therefore investigated the effects of breathing gas mixtures containing different proportions of CO2 prior to maximal apneas. Pre-breathing mixtures with higher percentages of CO2 resulted in greater spleen contraction, thus demonstrating hypercapnia's likely role as a trigger in addition to hypoxia. Study IV explored whether an all-or-nothing threshold stimulus for triggering spleen contraction existed, or if contraction was graded in relation to the magnitude of triggering stimuli. Exercise was therefore performed in an already hypoxic state during normobaria. Rest in hypoxia produced a moderate spleen volume reduction, with an enhanced spleen contraction resulting after hypoxic exercise, with a concomitant increase in Hb. This implies that spleen contraction is a graded response related to the magnitude of the stimuli. This could be beneficial in environments with varying oxygen content or work loads. Study V examined the possibility that spleen contraction is part of the acclimatization to altitude, during an expedition to summit Mt Everest. The long-term high altitude exposure, combined with physical work on the mountain, had no effects on resting spleen volume but resulted in a stronger spleen contraction, when provoked by apnea or exercise. This indicates that acclimatization to altitude may enhance the contractile capacity of the spleen, which may be beneficial for the climber. From these studies I concluded that hypoxia is an important trigger for spleen contraction but that hypercapnia also contributes in apneic situations. The spleen contraction likely provides a graded expulsion of erythrocytes in response to these stimuli, causing a temporary increase in gas storage capacity that may facilitate activities such as freediving and climbing. The storage of erythrocytes during rest serves to reduce blood viscosity, which would also be beneficial for the climber or diver. The human spleen contraction appears to become stronger with acclimatization, with beneficial effects at altitude. Such an upgraded response could be beneficial both in sports and diseases involving hypoxia.

  • 172.
    Lodin, Sam
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Natural Sciences, Engineering and Mathematics.
    Holomorphic embeddings and applications2009Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    In the first part of this thesis we consider the question of the number of equivalence

    classes of holomorphic embeddings of Ck into Cn. We show the existence of holomorphic

    families of proper holomorphic embeddings of Ck into Cn (0 < k < n−1),

    such that members of the family are pairwise nonequivalent in a suitable sense. As

    an application we use these embeddings to deduce results in the theory of holomorphic

    transformation groups.

    In the second part of the thesis the question of plurisubharmonic extension is connected

    to analytic discs, i.e. nonconstant holomorphic maps of the unit disc in C

    into Cn. We derive results on plurisubharmonic extension for analytic polyhedra.

  • 173.
    Logenius, Louise
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Natural Sciences, Engineering and Mathematics.
    The influence of high temperature on the discoloration and degradation of carbohydrates and on hydrogen peroxide bleaching of spruce TMP2008Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    When processing wood to obtain pulp, the fibers are subjected to high temperatureat moisture levels and to the influence of metal ions. Many process developmentshave resulted in utilization of higher temperatures that induce chemical reactionsin the wood fibers. This thesis deals with some aspects of using high temperaturesin pulping processes. The first part of this work concerns how carbohydrates areaffected, in terms of discoloration and degradation, by high temperature, moisture,and the presence of metal ions. The next part deals with the metal ion profiles inthermomechanical pulp (TMP) processes and the effects of the high temperaturetreatment of native wood under TMP processing conditions. The third sectionconcerns processing conditions present in the high‐temperature hydrogenperoxide bleaching of TMP.In experiments using cotton linter sheets impregnated with glucuronic acid anddifferent metal ions, increased 5‐(hydroxymethyl)furfural and 2‐furaldehydeconcentrations were accompanied by decreased viscosity and increaseddiscoloration when Mg2+ ions and, to some extent, Ca2+ ions were present. Thisindicates that under certain conditions, in this case, dry heat‐induced ageing underslightly acidic conditions and with access to oxygen, the presence of alkaline earthmetals can cause substantial degradation and discoloration of cellulose. Thisindicates that Mg2+ ions can promote the Lewis‐acid‐catalyzed degradation ofcellulose. When glucuronic acid was added to the cotton linter sheets, the presenceof Ca2+ or Mg2+ ions decreased the discoloration caused by the dry heat‐inducedageing of glucuronic acid and also led to a smaller decrease in viscosity comparedto that in cotton linter sheets containing only Ca2+ or Mg2+ ions. This may explainwhy the negative effect of Ca2+ or Mg2+ ions on viscosity is less pronounced incertain pulps.

    In mechanical pulping processes, the addition of sodium silicate and kaolin clayand re‐circulation of water from the paper machines increased the levels of ironand aluminum ions. In a mill using dithionite bleaching, the levels of iron andaluminum ions in the final pulp were approximately ten times higher than in a millusing hydrogen peroxide bleaching. This was probably due to extraction of moreiron and aluminum ions from the clay to the water due to low pH and to thecorrosion of process equipment induced by thiosulfate ions derived fromdecomposed dithionite. In laboratory trials, it was impossible to completelyremove iron from these pulps using diethylenetriaminepentaacetic acid orextraction with hydrochloric acid. This was probably due to the strong binding ofiron to the wood fiber or its presence as oxide/hydroxide clusters. The mostimportant issue is to avoid contaminating the pulp with iron ions; process waterand process chemicals with low iron contents should therefore be used. Especiallyin the dithionite bleaching process, iron contamination increases thedecomposition of the dithionite, causing corrosion of the process equipment andadding further iron to the pulp.The shavings method is a straightforward method for studying the formation andelimination of chromophores in wood. Light absorption coefficients, lightscattering coefficients, and brightness can easily be obtained using this method.The method was used for studying how temperature in the absence of mechanicalenergy affects wood brightness. This provided useful information about the effectof process conditions in mechanical pulping and its relationship to chromophoreformation. An advantage of using thin shavings is the rapid penetration ofchemicals into the fibers. The shavings method was therefore also used in studyingthe kinetics of hydrogen peroxide bleaching at high temperature.The high‐temperature (HT) hydrogen peroxide bleaching of a thermomechanicalpulp was carried out in a pressurized laboratory‐scale wing defibrator. Theexperiments demonstrate two ways to obtain high brightness under HT conditions.One way is two‐stage peroxide bleaching with a low total alkali/peroxide ratio inthe first stage to avoid alkaline darkening. The second way is to pre‐impregnatethe pulp with hydrogen peroxide before adding alkali in two stages. Themaximum brightness was reached after only 2.5 minutes at low alkali charge.Thus, the bleaching time can be short and the total alkali charge low under hightemperatureperoxide bleaching conditions. To achieve very high brightness usingHT hydrogen peroxide bleaching, other measures than increasing the alkali chargeand prolonging the bleaching time are necessary.

  • 174.
    Lund Ohlsson, Marie
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Health Sciences.
    Double Poling Incross-Country Skiing: Biomechanical and Physiological Analysis of Sitting and Standing Positions2018Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Double poling (DP) is a sub-technique in cross-country skiing that has increased in interest over the last decades, e.g. athletes in cross-country skiing have increased their utilisation of double poling during competitions. In cross-country sit-skiing athletes with impairments in legs and/or trunk sit in a sledge and utilise DP to propel themselves. Technique (i.e. movement pattern) is one key factor determining performance but also a factor that may affect the risk of overuse injuries in sports.

    Therefore, the overall aim of the thesis was to improve the understanding of the human movement technique in cross-country skiing DP, in both standing (paper I-II) and sitting positions (paper III-IV, Thesis A-B) using biomechanical and physiological measurements and inverse dynamics simulations. All studies were carried out on a double poling ergometer in laboratory. Three experimental studies were performed with able-bodied participants (papers I-II, IV-VI), one study with one participant with growth defect in the legs (paper III), and one study (Thesis B) with one participant with complete spinal cord injury at thoracic vertebra 4.

    In paper I the first full-body simulation of DP was performed and results were comparable to results found in literature when the kinematics and external kinetics were similar. Paper II showed how increased leg utilisation increased performance (forward impulse) but reduced skiing efficiency (output work divided by metabolic muscle work). These results indicate that both high performance (power output) and efficiency may not be achieved in the same technique.

    In sitting DP many different sitting positions are utilised. Athletes with full muscle control in hip and trunk mainly sit with their knees lower than their hips (KLnoS). Athletes with paralysis in lower trunk and legs need trunk stability from the sit-ski. Most often, this is achieved by adopting a knees higher than hips (KH) position together with a support for the lower back. However, this position might induce large flexion in the spine, which is hypothesised to affect injury risk in the shoulders and lower back. This thesis has enabled the knees low sitting position for athletes with paralysis in the lower trunk and legs by supporting the anterior trunk with the sledge (KL).

     

    In sitting DP in athletes with full hip and trunk muscle control, high performance was achieved through proximal-distal sequencing from the hips through the trunk to the arms, and large muscle work in spine and legs (IV, V, Thesis A). In order of performance, KLnoS utilised muscles in the hips-spine-arms, compared with utilisation of spine-arms in KH, and mainly arms in KL. Higher amount of activated muscle mass resulted in lower relative anaerobic metabolism during submaximal exercise (IV).

    The lower back joint reactions were higher for the sitting position with larger spinal flexion, KH compared to KL (VI). These results suggest that there is an increased risk of injury in the lower back for the sitting position KH. Athletes with paraplegia generally have a high risk of injuries in the shoulders. The results of this thesis showed higher shoulder joint reactions in the sitting position with larger shoulder-arm muscle work, in KL compared to KH.

    For the case study with one participant with thoracic spinal cord injury (Thesis B) highest performance was achieved in the KH sitting position where spinal flexion occurred at the beginning of the poling phase. When comparing the fixed trunk positions KL and KHS, higher performance was achieved in KHS. It was speculated that the difference between KL and KHS was due to the impairment of the vasoconstriction in paralysed muscles. The effect of gravity on venous pooling is probably larger when the legs are lower down as in KL. This effect was not present for individuals without paralysis (III), where KL was more economical than KHS.

    Parasport classification needs evidence of how impairment affects sporting performance (Tweedy et al., 2014, Tweedy and Vanlandewijck, 2011). Classification might benefit from simulations as performed in this thesis. The musculoskeletal simulations of seated DP in paper V and the KLnoS position presented in the thesis have showed the relative contribution of different muscle groups on performance. These results are novel and might contribute to improvement of the classification system.

  • 175.
    Lundberg, Tommy
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Health Sciences.
    The Effects of Aerobic Exercise on Human Skeletal Muscle Adaptations to Resistance Exercise2014Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Aerobic exercise (AE) may interfere with muscle adaptations induced by resistance exercise (RE). Three experimental campaigns were conducted to explore the influence of AE on molecular, functional and muscular adaptations to acute and chronic RE. Twenty-nine men performed unilateral knee extensor RE preceded by AE (AE+RE). The contralateral leg did RE only. First, the influence of acute AE on muscle molecular responses to RE performed 6 h later was studied. Subsequently, this exercise regimen was implemented over 5 weeks training. The relationships between acute and chronic outcomes were examined and molecular responses to acute exercise were assessed in untrained and trained muscle. Finally, acute and chronic responses to AE+RE, interspersed by only 15 min recovery, were investigated.Phosphorylation of mTOR and p70S6K was greater after AE+RE than after RE. In parallel, myostatin was suppressed for a longer time after AE+RE. These results suggest that AE+RE enhance skeletal muscle anabolic environment more than RE alone (Paper I). After 5 weeks training, improvements in muscle strength and power were similar across legs. However, AE+RE prompted a greater increase in muscle size than RE, suggesting that AE potentiates the hypertrophic stimulus to RE training without altering muscle function progress (Paper II). Consistent with changes in whole-muscle size, AE+RE showed greater anabolic molecular responses than RE. As chronic training blunted this effect, it appears that AE offers a synergistic hypertrophic stimulus to RE only during short-term training (Paper III). Although putative regulators of hypertrophy such as p70S6K, myostatin and PGC-1a4 were examined, no molecular marker correlated with changes in muscle size, strength or power induced by training. Hence, this study challenges the concept that single molecular markers are viable predictors of training-induced muscle adaptations (Paper III–IV). When recovery time between exercise bouts was reduced to 15 min, AE+RE still produced a more substantial increase in muscle size than RE. However, progression of concentric strength was blunted. Thus, while restored muscle function between exercise bouts is a prerequisite for achieving maximal gains in strength and power, incomplete recovery appears not to compromise muscle hypertrophy (Paper V).Collectively, the results suggest that outcomes of AE+RE are impacted by chronic training and time allowed for recovery between exercise modes. Yet, the current study offers no support to the view that AE interferes with muscle hypertrophy induced by RE.

  • 176.
    Lundgren, Jan
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Information Technology and Media.
    Simulating Behavioral Level On-Chip Noise Coupling2007Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    In this thesis, noise coupling simulation is introduced into the behavioral level. Methods andmodels for simulating on-chip noise coupling at the behavioral level in a design flow are presentedand verified for accuracy and validity. Today, designs of electronic systems are becoming denserand more and more mixed-signal systems such as System-on-Chip (SoC) are being devised. Thisraises problems when the electronics components start to interfere with each other. Often, digitalcomponents disturb analog components, introducing noise into the system causing degradation ofthe performance or even introducing errors into the functionality of the system.Today, these effects can only be simulated at a very late stage in the design process, causinglarge design iterations and increased costs if the designers are required to return and makealterations, which may have occurred at a very early stage in the process.This is why the focus of this work is centered on extracting noise coupling simulation modelsthat can be used at a very early design stage, such as at the behavioral level and then follow thedesign through the various design stages. To achieve this, SystemC is selected as a platform andimplementation example for the behavioral level models. SystemC supports design refinement,which means that when designs are being refined and are crossing the design levels, the noisecoupling models can also be refined to suit the current design.This new method of thinking in primarily mixed-signal designs is called Behavioral levelNoise Coupling (BeNoC) simulation and shows great promise in enabling a reduction in the costsof design iterations due to component cross-talk and simplifies the work for mixed-signal systemdesigners.

  • 177.
    Lundgren, Minna
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Social Sciences.
    Boundaries of displacement: Belonging and Return among Forcibly Displaced Young Georgians from Abkhazia2016Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This dissertation explores the implications of borders and boundaries for how forcibly displaced young Georgians from Abkhazia understand issues of belonging and return. My theoretical framework draws from theories on home and belonging as well as theories on border and boundary making, and locates them in geographies of uncertainty – or riskscapes – areas characterized by conflict and/or inequality. Empirical data was collected through two sets of interviews in Zugdidi near the border to Abkhazia and a questionnaire survey in Zugdidi and the capital Tbilisi. These data have been analysed through both qualitative and quantitative methods.

     

    The young respondents providing material for this research do not constitute a homogenous group. Some of the respondents have family still living in Abkhazia or even partly grew up in the area; others have never been there. The primary goal of the Georgian government has been that the displaced population should return to their homes, and the government’s efforts for local integration has long been insufficient. Since no peace accords have been signed, a lack of security prevents a large-scale return. Notwithstanding increased border controls that have made it difficult to visit former homes, some young people still cross the de facto border. By doing this they contest both the Abkhazian de facto authorities and the border as a symbol of separation and differentiation, while claiming a right to belong in Abkhazia. Property and social relations in Abkhazia contribute to stronger connections and an imperative to return. On the other hand, experience of hardship in contemporary Abkhazia has resulted in some young people not considering return as a viable option. Youth who never visited Abkhazia depend mainly on other peoples’ memories and political discourse to create emotional bonds to the area their parents fled and to form their ideas of return. Results from the quantitative survey indicate that youth living in Tbilisi, closer to the political centre, to a higher extent intend to return than their peers in Zugdidi. Meanwhile young people’s experiences of everyday life in current dwellings in relative stability create emotional bonds to their present place of living. These experiences challenge both collective processes and experiences from Abkhazia when it comes to maintaining the desire to return.

     

    This research offers insights into the human consequences of war and conflict. More specifically, this dissertation sheds light on how young internally displaced persons (IDPs) are living in a borderland (in both temporal and spatial terms) characterized by uncertainty-- between the past and the future as well as between Georgia and Abkhazia. Practices of exclusion and segregation are constitutive of the borders and boundaries that permeate life experiences of the forcibly displaced youth. Furthermore, these borders and boundaries are situated in riskscapes of disputed belongings, which makes this borderland more or less stable for different groups of IDPs. This dissertation contributes to an increased understanding of how political aspirations and personal desire to return preserves instability and uncertainty as long as return is not possible. 

  • 178.
    Löfstedt, Ulrica
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Information Technology and Media.
    E-services for and by citizens: towards e-participation and social systems design for development of local public e-services2008Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other scientific)
  • 179.
    Löfstrand, Pär
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Psychology.
    Communicating, Negotiating and Stereotyping: The roles of context, situation and gender in small group decision-making2018Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Making decisions together in groups takes an important role in society. Everywhere and in many different contexts people meet to make more or less formal decisions. As stereotypes constitute simplified group based perceptions of other people, decision-making groups risk making biased judgments and commit discriminating decisions. Stereotyping often follow the two universal dimensions competence and warmth (Cuddy, Fiske & Glick, 2008). How people´s judgments are affected by stereotypes has mainly been studied on individual level and less is known about how stereotypes and prejudice is communicated and negotiated in group decision-making situations. One approach to study this is to investigate how different contexts may lead to different communication patterns, different experiences, and different decisions.  In this thesis context was varied in two different ways in two experiments. In the first experiment the goal set for the decision-making was varied. A competitive goal was contrasted to a cooperative goal in a group decision task using a sports scenario where the participants had to select members to a relay team. In the second experiment different information was used as a context variable. This was done by varying the information of gender and parenthood status of the applicants in a fictive recruitment scenario. In addition, in both experiments the gender composition in the groups was varied, forming yet another variable that might play a role for how the decision-making was carried out. These three factors were assumed to influence the form of the communication, the content of the communication in terms of stereotyping, and how the decision-making process was experienced. A mixed-method approach was chosen where quantitative and qualitative data were used in conjunction with each other, which was assumed to give a richer picture of the results.

    In paper I the form of the communication, as analyzed with interaction process analysis (IPA), did not differ much between the two goals. On the other hand, the content showed more systematic patterns. A competitive goal seemed to lead to both inclusion and exclusion with use of both positive and negative stereotypes. A cooperative goal seemed to lead to inclusion mechanisms and only use of positive stereotypes. In paper II where the aim was to investigate what was experienced as constituting a successful decision-making process it was found that equality of influence was of importance. Furthermore, qualitative analyses of the conversation patterns, by use of the conversational argument coding scheme (CACS), seemed to validate this. The successful groups had a more complex communication pattern than the less successful groups. In paper III, where the information for the decision task was varied in terms of gender and parenthood status of the applicants, it was found that parenthood information triggered a lot of discussion. The participants did not differentiate between mothers and fathers, but they applied attributes of competence and warmth differently to the targets. Furthermore, gender and gender composition seemed to matter as male and female groups applied the attributes differently. Paper IV used data from both experiments in order to investigate how the context variables and gender composition influenced how the decision situation was experienced. The results indicate that the context variables and gender composition interacted with own gender. Men seemed more content in male groups with male targets and a male parent condition while women seemed more content in mixed groups and a female parent condition.

    Context seems to play an important role, as it provides the participants in the group discussions with different information, leading to different patterns of stereotyping in the discussions. Also how the decision was experienced seems to be related to the context. Furthermore, group composition seems to function in this way too. The results are discussed in relation to practical implications and suggestions for future research. 

  • 180.
    Mahapatra, Krushna
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Engineering, Physics and Mathematics.
    Diffusion of innovative domestic heating systems and multi-storey wood-framed buildings in Sweden2007Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The diffusion of innovations that promote sustainable use of forest resources and energy efficiency is important for reducing greenhouse gas emission and dependency on oil. In this thesis the ‘systems of innovation’ (SI)

    The SI analyses showed that several sources of path dependency, resulting from the establishment and growth of the concrete-based construction system over the past 100 years, hinder the expansion of a wood-based multi-storey

    The adopter-centric approach included household questionnaire surveys: one covering the whole of Sweden in 2004 involving 1500 randomly selected homeowners with any type of heating system, and another in the city of Östersund in

    The expansion of district heating networks in the detached home sector, particularly those homes with resistance heaters, is often considered difficult. However, results showed that, in Östersund, the government investment

  • 181.
    Majid, Abdul
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Electronics Design.
    Analysis and EMI suppression of MHz frequency range switch mode power supplies2013Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
  • 182.
    Malik, Abdul Waheed
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Electronics Design.
    Real-Time Optical Position Sensing on FPGA2014Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
  • 183.
    Margaryan, Lusine
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Tourism Studies and Geography.
    Commercialization of nature through tourism2017Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This dissertation contributes to developing knowledge on the commercialization of natural resources through tourism. This is achieved by means of understanding the main avenues through which natural resources are commercialized, and analyzing the operational setting of tourism firms. The focal area is nature-based tourism– a type of tourism, taking place incomparatively unmodified natural areas, which has emerged as a powerful gravitational force, integrating an increasing variety of natural resources into the commercial domain. The point of departure is the assumption that fornature-based tourism firms, nature is simultaneously the main object of commercialization and the operational setting, where this commercialization happens. The attention here is, therefore, on the supply side, i.e. on the smalland micro firms, acting as the agents of commercialization. The empirical data come primarily from a nation-wide survey among the nature-based tourism firms in Sweden, generating the most comprehensive information about this sector to date. Additional data come from in-depth interviews and observations among the nature-based tourism firms in Sweden, as well assecondary sources (official statistics on natural resources and a survey in Norway).

    This is a compilation thesis, i.e. it consists of a cover essay and five individual papers. The cover essay offers a bird’s eye view on all the papers, frames them theoretically and synthesizes all the findings into a coherent contribution. Papers I and II create the foundation, necessary for understanding the processes of nature commercialization and the operational setting of naturebased tourism firms, while Papers III, IV and V provide supplementary insights into these areas of inquiry. Paper I starts by building on existing knowledge in outdoor recreation to approach nature-based tourism. Paper II focuses on the operational setting, conceptualizes and explores its dimensions. Building on this, Paper III looks at how the presence of various amenities in the operational setting can explain the localization patterns of the firms on various geographical levels. Paper IV focuses on the operational setting dimensions omitted in the previous papers, i.e. the continuous efforts of the firms to negotiate the inherent uncertainty within the setting. Finally, Paper V looks at various characteristics of nature-based tourism firms to understand the specifics of sustainability strategies.

    The main findings in these five papers demonstrate that the nature-basedtourism is an active integrator of a wide variety of natural resources into the commercial domain, and approaching them from the supply perspective provides an additional understanding of the sector. This approach suggests that the nature-based tourism supply could be understood not only from the perspectives of tourist activities offered, but also from the perspective of operational setting preferences (e.g., the axes of high-low specialization, and high-low dependence on specific setting features), providing a new insight into the ways of nature commercialization through tourism. The operational setting itself becomes an important resource, being simultaneously part of the supply and the environment of a tourism system, bringing together a multitude of dimensions and actors. The resources nature-based tourism depends on defy ‘commercialization-friendly’ criteria, creating a context of uncertainty and demanding higher levels of creativity and agency on behalf of the firms. Commercialized nature experiences become important not only for specialized, skill- and equipment-intensive activities, but also for rather simple and relaxed ones, on both international and domestic markets. This suggests the growing importance of commercial nature-based tourism, linked to growing sustainability challenges. The sustainable resource use within the Scandinavian nature-based tourism context, however, is deeply entrenched inunique local specifics, and the entrepreneurial characteristics are not always compatible with market-based sustainability policies, suggesting the need for more fine-tuned approaches.

  • 184.
    Mattsson, Amanda
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Chemical Engineering.
    Characterisation of Time-dependent Statistical Failure of Fibre Networks: Applications for Light-weight Structural Composites2018Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The future of a sustainable society requires that materials not only be renewable, but also leave as small a carbon foot-printin the environment as possible. One such product is light-weight composite material for transportation packages. Cellulose fibres have been and will continue to be ideal for this purpose.

    The strength design of light-weight composites is becoming increasingly important. The challenge is to neither over- nor under-design, but instead to target the right strength underrealistic loading conditions. The question then is: What is right strength? Under realistic loading conditions (e.g., fatigue, random loading, and creep), materials fail differently from what one expects from tests of static strength: materials often fail at much lower stresses than are measured in these tests, the failure is time-dependent, and time to failure is highly variable. Therefore, to answer the above question, we have set up the following objectives: (1) theoretically formulate time-dependent statistical failure (TSF), and examine the validity of the model; (2) define material parameters describing the multi-faceted strength characteristics based on this formulation; (3) develop an experimental method to determine the material parameters; (4) investigate the impacts of fibre properties and network structures; and finally (5) characterise containerboard (the fibre material used in corrugated boxes) samples in terms of the new material parameters. The results for these five objectives are presented below, one by one.

    (1) A general formulation of TSF, originally proposed byColeman [1] for fibre failures, has been used. We have found that this model is indeed valid, even at the fibre network level, with only two restrictions: the existence of a lower bound onweakest-link scaling and an approximate nature of the Weibull distribution.

    (2) Accordingly, we have defined three material parameters that characterise different aspects of material strength: shortterm strength, durability/brittleness, and reliability. We call these parameters the new strength metrics.

    (3) Although the newly defined material parameters are most comprehensive, it takes up to several months to determine them by using creep tests. We have developed a new method, using constant loading rate (CLR) tests, that not only gives values comparable to those from creep tests, but also requires only about one day, allowing a drastic reduction in the testing time.

    (4) Monte-Carlo simulations of lattice networks have been performed to determine the basic relationships between fibre properties and network failures. The brittleness of an individual fibre (or a breaking element) influenced both brittleness and reliability of the fibre network, the higher the brittleness, the lower the reliability. Reliability, on the other hand, exhibited more intricate relationships with fibre properties and network structures. Several important analytical relationships have been derived.

    (5) Finally, using the CLR tests, we have characterised commercial containerboards in terms of the new strength metrics. Containerboard, as a cellulose fibre network, is quite comparable to typical stiff polymer-based fibre composites (e.g., glassfibres and aramid fibres). However, the reliability and durability/brittlenessof containerboard varied considerably within the operating windows, suggesting ample opportunities to fine-tune these properties even using current papermaking practices.The fact that the multi-faceted nature of strength can be expressed by three parameters is remarkable, and the implications are profound for how materials are designed and new materials developed. It is the author’s hope that this thesis will be of some use when it comes to redefining materials for a sustainable society, particularly the renewable alternative –cellulose fibres.

  • 185.
    Mattsson, Claes
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Information Technology and Media.
    Design, Fabrication and Optimization of Thermal Radiation Detectors Based on Thin Polymer Membranes2009Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The number of applications in which infrared radiation sensors are used is increasing. In some applications, the cost of the sensor itself is an issue, and simple solutions are thus required. In this thesis, the investigations have related to the use of thin polymer membranes in thermal infrared sensors, such as bolometers and thermopiles.

    Infrared sensors are usually subcategorized into photonic sensors and thermal sensors. For detection of infrared radiation using a photodetector, there is a requirement for low band-gap material. The need of cooling makes infrared photodetectors rather expensive, and not an alternative for low-cost applications. In thermal sensors, the heat generated from the incident infrared radiation is converted into an electrical output by means of a heat sensitive element. Thermal sensors operate at room temperature, which makes them a low-cost alternative. The basic structure of thermal sensors consists of a temperature sensitive element connected to a heat sink through a structure with low thermal conductance. It is common to use thin membranes of Silicon or Silicon Nitride as thermal insulation between the heat sink and the sensitive element. In comparison, polymers have a thermal conductance that is lower than in these materials, and this increases the generated temperature in the sensitive element. A polymer such as SU-8 has a low thermal conductivity and is applied using a spin coater. This reduces the number of complex processing steps. This thesis presents a new application of SU-8 as a closed membrane in a thermal sensor.

    The concept was initially demonstrated by fabricating a nickel bolometer and titanium/nickel thermopile structure with a 5 µm SU-8 / SiO2 membrane. However, for the sensor responsivity to be able to compete with commercial thermal sensors the structures, some optimization was required. Since the thermopile generates its own voltage output and requires no external bias, the optimizations were focused on this structure. There exist a number available software tools for thermal simulation of components. However, to the author’s best knowledge, there exist no tool for design optimization of thermopiles with closed membranes. An optimization tool using iterative thermal simulations was developed and evaluated. A new thermopile structure, based on the optimization results, was both fabricated and characterized. Using an infrared laser with a small spot, the measured responsivity of the manufactured thermopile was higher than that of a commercial sensor. In the case of a defocused spot and for longer wavelengths, the infrared absorption in the absorption layer reduces and degrades the responsivity.

    The thermopile was further evaluated as a sensor in a carbon dioxide meter application based on the NDIR principle. An increase in the CO2 concentration demonstrated a clear decrease in the thermopile voltage response, as was expected. By normalizing the voltage response and comparing it with a commercial sensor, this showed that the SU-8 based thermopile is relatively more sensitive to changes in the CO2 concentration.

  • 186.
    Meng, Xiaozhou
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Electronics Design.
    Technology Driven Obsolescence Management for Embedded Systems2014Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    In this thesis, the work presented is in relation to technology driven obsolescence management for embedded systems.

    Component obsolescence problems may occur in systems with a life cycle longer than that of one or more of their components when there is a demand without enough existing stock, such as automotive, avionics, military applications, etc. This thesis analyzes the component obsolescence problem from both the design technology selection and management perspectives.

    Design technologies selection is associated with hardware and software. Several hardware platforms such as COTS and field-programmable gate array (FPGA) are discussed. FPGA intellectual property (IP) portability is emphasized which will affect the obsolescence management cost. Embedded software is also a crucial part for system sustainment. A risk analysis is performed in relation to long life cycle systems for different design technologies. Different platform cases are evaluated by analyzing the essence of each case and the consequences of different risk scenarios during system maintenance. This has shown that an FPGA platform with the vendor and device independent soft IPs has the highest maintainability and the minimum redesign cost.

    The reuse of a predefined IP can shorten the development times and assist the designer to meet time-to-market (TTM) requirements. System migration between devices is unavoidable, especially when it has a long life cycle expectation, so IP portability becomes an important issue for system maintenance. If an IP for FPGAs is truly portable, it must be easily adaptable to different communication interfaces, being portable between different FPGA vendors and devices, having no dependencies on the tool set and library used for the system design and no restriction on the communication interface. An M-JPEG decoder and a soft microprocessor portability analysis case study are presented in the thesis. A methodology is proposed to ease the interface modification and interface reuse, thus to increase the portability of an IP.

    A strategic proactive obsolescence management model is proposed from a management perspective. This model can estimate the minimum management costs for a system with different architectures. It consists of two parts. The first is to generate a graph, which is in the form of an obsolescence management diagram. A segments table containing the data of this diagram is calculated and prepared for optimization at a second step. This second part is to find the minimum cost for system obsolescence management. Mixed integer linear programming (MILP) is used to calculate the minimum management cost and schedule. The model is open sourced thus allowing other research groups to freely download and modify it.

    Both the design technology selection and the strategic proactive obsolescence management are demonstrated by an industrial display computer system case study. The results show significant cost avoidance as compared to the original method used by the company.

    Finally, the research results are encapsulated into an obsolescence management cost avoidance methodology.  

  • 187.
    Mentsen Ness, Tove
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Nursing Sciences.
    Home nursing care in rural areas: Stories from oldest old persons living alone and their nurses2015Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
  • 188.
    Moe, Aud
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Nursing Sciences.
    Jeg vil leve til jeg dør: Livslyst hos hjemmeboende kronisk sykeeldste eldre2013Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    One challenge in the Western world is the risk of functional impairmentand chronic disease accompanying older age. In Norway it is expected thatmost chronically ill older persons will continue to live at home and receivehelp from home nursing care. The inner strength of the oldest old, as seenin relation to the help that is given, and whether the help has contributed tostrengthen the will to live has been explored only to a limited extent.Meaning in life and daily routines can be related to the will to live,understood as enjoying life and having the courage to live. The aim of thisstudy is to develop knowledge in regard to chronically ill oldest olderpersons and the possibilities and limitations in their will to live when theyreceive help from home nursing care.This study uses the quantitative method (n=120, Article 1 and Article 2) todescribe the characteristics of inner strength using the questionnairesResilience Scale, Sense of Coherence Scale, Purpose in Life Test, and Self-Transcendence Scale. Inner strength was seen in relation to mental andphysical health using the questionnaire SF-36. The qualitative method wasused to illuminate how the oldest older persons experienced living at homewith chronic illness (n=13, Article 3) and receiving help from home nursingcare (n=11, Article 4). The participants in this study were 80 years old orolder, living at home with chronic illnesses, and receiving help from homenursing care. All participants were determined to have the mental capacityto take part in this study.The analysis showed in Article 1 that the oldest old had an inner strengthexpressed as ”sense of coherence” and ”purpose in life.” Their innerstrength was accompanied by the ability for self-transcendence. Mentalhealth was predicted by self-transcendence (p < 0.001) for the total sampleand for women. Physical health was predicted by self-transcendence (p <0.01) for the total sample. Low resilience contributed to vulnerability for theparticipants. They were vulnerable in terms of limited perseverance, selfreliance,and existential aloneness (Article 2). On the contrary, theyexperienced equanimity and meaning. Meaning in daily life (Article 3)sometimes meant feelings of insufficiency and dependency. In contrast,they also experienced joy in life, gratitude for living at home, and aneagerness to participate in activities that made them feel alive. Theyexperienced both good and bad days, which depended on their illness butwas also based on how their needs for help and support were met. InviiArticle 4, receiving help indicated different experiences. Being ill anddependent on help led to days with illness, treatment, and receiving care. Italso indicated they were in need of professional help. Receiving help couldmean being at the mercy of helpers, which could imply unworthy help, asthey had no influence on the help they got from incompetent nurses whofocused only on tasks, with limited flexibility in their work, using theirhomes as a working place. This situation of receiving help from busynurses caused the old person to feel inferior as a human being. Other timesit meant receiving help from nurses who took care with respect to the oldperson and confirmed him or her as a human being. The older personswanted to be seen, met, and supported to strengthen their courage to meetthe challenges of being old and ill.According to the ethics of caring, human beings are vulnerable andmutually dependent on each other. This influences the possibilities andlimitations of ”the other” in experiencing a will to live. ”Receiving theother” can contribute to the will to live, influenced by the help received inan asymmetric dependency in which the nurses are caught in the tensionbetween suffering and the will to live for the oldest older person in need ofhelp. In this tension, the will to live is dependent on help that is given in arelationship characterized by caring and responsibility for the other.

  • 189.
    Muddala, Suryanarayana Murthy
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Information and Communication systems.
    Free View Rendering for 3D Video: Edge-Aided Rendering and Depth-Based Image Inpainting2015Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Three Dimensional Video (3DV) has become increasingly popular with the success of 3D cinema. Moreover, emerging display technology offers an immersive experience to the viewer without the necessity of any visual aids such as 3D glasses. 3DV applications, Three Dimensional Television (3DTV) and Free Viewpoint Television (FTV) are auspicious technologies for living room environments by providing immersive experience and look around facilities. In order to provide such an experience, these technologies require a number of camera views captured from different viewpoints. However, the capture and transmission of the required number of views is not a feasible solution, and thus view rendering is employed as an efficient solution to produce the necessary number of views. Depth-image-based rendering (DIBR) is a commonly used rendering method. Although DIBR is a simple approach that can produce the desired number of views, inherent artifacts are major issues in the view rendering. Despite much effort to tackle the rendering artifacts over the years, rendered views still contain visible artifacts.

    This dissertation addresses three problems in order to improve 3DV quality: 1) How to improve the rendered view quality using a direct approach without dealing each artifact specifically. 2) How to handle disocclusions (a.k.a. holes) in the rendered views in a visually plausible manner using inpainting. 3) How to reduce spatial inconsistencies in the rendered view. The first problem is tackled by an edge-aided rendering method that uses a direct approach with one-dimensional interpolation, which is applicable when the virtual camera distance is small. The second problem is addressed by using a depth-based inpainting method in the virtual view, which reconstructs the missing texture with background data at the disocclusions. The third problem is undertaken by a rendering method that firstly inpaint occlusions as a layered depth image (LDI) in the original view, and then renders a spatially consistent virtual view.

    Objective assessments of proposed methods show improvements over the state-of-the-art rendering methods. Visual inspection shows slight improvements for intermediate views rendered from multiview videos-plus-depth, and the proposed methods outperforms other view rendering methods in the case of rendering from single view video-plus-depth. Results confirm that the proposed methods are capable of reducing rendering artifacts and producing spatially consistent virtual views.

    In conclusion, the view rendering methods proposed in this dissertation can support the production of high quality virtual views based on a limited number of input views. When used to create a multi-scopic presentation, the outcome of this dissertation can benefit 3DV technologies to improve the immersive experience.

  • 190.
    Nair, Gireesh
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Engineering and Sustainable Development.
    Implementation of energy efficiency measures in Swedish single-family houses2012Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Energy efficiency improvements in the residential sector have manybenefits, such as reducing greenhouse gas emissions, improving energy security,creating jobs and improving living conditions. There is a large potential to improveenergy efficiency in existing Swedish residential buildings. Many of the energyefficiency measures that can be implemented in buildings may be cost effective.However, the successful implementation of efficiency measures depends onmultiple factors, including the attitudes and perceptions of the relevant actors. Insingle‐family houses the homeowners are important actor in the diffusion ofenergy efficiency measures as they are the final decision makers regarding whetherto adopt such measures. An adopter‐centric approach was used to studyhomeowners’ adoption and intention to adopt energy efficiency measures. Twomail‐in questionnaire surveys of owners of single‐family houses were conducted;one was a national survey, and the other was sent to selected households in twocounties that had installed energy‐efficient windows. The government fundedchange agents and private actors like sellers/installers could influencehomeowners’ adoption decisions. Accordingly, a survey of municipality energyadvisers across Sweden and window sellers/installers in Jämtland County wasconducted to understand their perception and attitude towards energy efficiencymeasures.The results show that the majority of homeowners considered it importantto reduce their household energy use, with most of them preferred to undertakeno‐cost measures (e.g., switching off lights). The majority of respondinghomeowners (70-90%) did not intend to improve their building envelopecomponents mainly because they were satisfied with their existing components.Investment costs and annual energy cost savings were the most importantfactors in the adoption of energy‐efficient building envelope measures.Homeowners who considered their energy costs to be high were more likely toadopt an energy efficiency investment measure compared to those who thoughttheir energy costs were low. Though the majority of homeowners did not considertheir energy cost as high still they considered it important to reduce householdenergy cost. Therefore, economic incentives may induce homeowners to adoptsuch measures. Increasing the energy price may induce more homeowners toadopt energy efficiency measures as the higher energy price may further improvethe cost effectiveness of such measures. However, majority of homeowners did notconsider energy and CO2 taxes as effective policy instruments that encourage themto adopt energy efficiency measures.iiHomeowners considered interpersonal sources, builders, sellers andinstallers to be important sources of information regarding the adoption of energyefficiency measures. Energy advice service could be an important policy tool topromote energy efficiency, but about 50% of the homeowners are unaware of thisservice. Only 14% of homeowners had consulted an energy adviser out of which57% (i.e. 8% to total respondents) had implemented the suggestions. Hence, moreefforts are needed to increase awareness and effectiveness of energy advice service.The majority of municipal energy advisers were of the opinion that increasedfinancial support and more training in technical aspects of energy issues couldimprove their performance.Actors close to homeowners in the supply chain, such as sellers andinstallers, could play an important role in homeowners’ adoption of energyefficiency measures. Approximately 97% of responding homeowners who receiveda recommendation about particular windows from a seller/installer had installedthe recommended windows. The window sellers/installers in Jämtland prefer awindow that is reasonably energy efficient. The majority will not recommend awindow with a U‐value of < 1.2 W/m2K mainly because they were concerned aboutcondensation issues and about the high prices of such windows. Approximately80% of homeowners who availed themselves of the investment subsidy installedwindows with a U‐value of 1.2 W/m2K. Like the window sellers/installers,homeowners cited condensation issues and high prices as reasons for not buyingmore energy‐efficient windows. This finding suggests that windowsellers/installers have strong influence in homeowners’ choice of windows.Therefore to increase the adoption rate of more energy‐efficient windows inexisting single‐family houses, it may be necessary to address windowsellers’/installers’ concerns about these windows.

  • 191.
    Nazar Ul Islam, Muhammad
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Electronics Design.
    Method of torque measurement based on volumetric strain2016Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
  • 192.
    Nelsson, Erik
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Chemical Engineering. Holmen AB.
    Improved energy efficiency in mill scale production of mechanical pulp by increased wood softening and refining intensity2016Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This thesis focuses on the electric energy efficiency of single stage double disc refining for production of printing grade mechanical pulp from Norway spruce wood chips. The thesis is based on the hypothesis, that more energy efficiency refining can be attained by balanced increases of wood softening and refining intensity. Five mill scale trials were performed where wood softening and refining intensity was varied by applying or changing the following process parameters and variables:

    • Chip pretreatment/impregnation with water
    • Low dosages of sodium sulfite (Na2SO3) added to impregnation
    • Temperature and retention time in the atmospheric preheater bin
    • Refining temperature (housing pressure)
    • Feeding segment design combined with increased production rate

    By combining suitable increases in wood softening and refining intensity, it was possible to reduce the specific electric energy consumption in refining by 15% (~290 kWh per bone dry ton (bdt)) while preserving important pulp properties within ±5%, compared to the standard double disc refining process. This was done by combining chip impregnation, using an addition of 0.36% (on bone dry basis) sodium sulfite, with a new feeding segment design which enabled 25% higher production rate.

    When using the new feeding segment design at an increased production rate at unchanged wood softening, it led to reduced fiber length and increased sheet light scattering coefficient at certain tensile index, compared with the standard segment design at normal production rate. This is consistent with the effects normally seen when the refining intensity is increasing. The specific electric energy consumption was 8% lower at a tensile index of 43.5 Nm/g (on Rapid Köthen laboratory sheets) compared to refining at lower intensity using the standard segment design at normal production rate.

    Mechanical chip pretreatment with subsequent water impregnation showed a reduction in specific electric energy consumption of 6% (~120 kWh/bdt). When chip impregnation was applied in a later trial with a milder chip compression, it led to increased wood softening seen as better preserved fiber length and reduced light scattering coefficient. This resulted in a reduction in tensile index at certain specific electric energy consumption when applied with the standard refining condition but to an increase in tensile index when applied with refining at higher intensity using the feeding segment design at higher production rate.

    An addition of 1.2% sodium sulfite during impregnation led to a sulfonate content of pulps of ~0.28% (as Na2SO3 equivalents, including post sulfonation) and an average increase in tensile index of about 8.3 Nm/g, when compared to unsulfonated pulps at certain specific electric energy consumption. The increase in tensile index correlated with increased delamination and internal fibrillation of fibers (measured by Simon’s staining), which indicate that the increase in tensile index for sulfonated pulps was a result of improved fiber flexibility and collapsibility. The reduction in disc gap at certain specific electric energy consumption in refining due to an increased wood softening after sulfonation may explain the increase in delamination and internal fibrillation for sulfonated pulps. The smaller disc gap probably led to a more intense refining, i.e. loading at higher deformation rates due to a higher degree of deformation in bar crossings.

    Different temperatures (80 vs. 97°C) and retention times (6 vs. 9 min.) in the atmospheric preheater bin were studied. This showed that the lower temperature and shorter retention time was beneficial for the tensile strength and light scattering of pulp when applying low dosage sodium sulfite pretreatment. This was most likely a result of too high degree of wood softening prior to defibration in the breaker bar zone when combining low dosage sodium sulfite pretreatment with the higher preheating bin temperature at longer retention time.

    Different refining temperatures (4.6 and 6.4 bar(g) refiner housing pressure) were evaluated both without and with low additions (0.6% and 1.2%) of sodium sulfite. Raising the refining temperature increased tensile index by 3.2 Nm/g and the addition of 1.2% sodium sulfite by 8.6 Nm/g. The combined increase (~12 Nm/g) was similar to the effect of increasing the specific electric energy consumption by 380 kWh/bdt, when comparing pulps at equal tensile index. However, the pulps produced with increased refining temperature and sodium sulfite addition had lower light scattering coefficient at certain tensile index. The combination of increased refining temperature and addition of 0.6% sodium sulfite was interesting and resulted in pulp with higher tensile index, light scattering coefficient and brightness together with lower shives content at certain specific electric energy consumption, compared with pulp produced at the lower refining temperature without addition of sodium sulfite.

    Finally, an implementation of the technology presented here is discussed in relation to the Braviken mill (Holmen Paper AB, Norrköping, Sweden) concerning reduction in electric energy consumption and steam recovery. The technology has potential to reduce the electrical energy use by ~100 GWh/year at the Braviken paper mill, where this study was performed.

  • 193.
    Neuman, Magnus
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Natural Sciences.
    Applied problems and computational methods in radiative transfer2013Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Light scattering in turbid media is essential for such diverse applications as paperand print, computer rendering, optical tomography, astrophysics and remote sensing.This thesis investigates angular variations of light reflected from plane-parallelturbid media using both mathematical models and reflectance measurements, dealswith several applications and proposes novel computational methods for solving thegoverning equations.Angular variations of light reflected from plane-parallel turbid media is studiedusing both mathematical models and reflectance measurements. It is found that thelight is reflected anisotropically from all media encountered in practice, and that theangular variations depend on the medium absorption and transmittance and on theangular distribution of the incident light. If near-surface bulk scattering dominates,as in strongly absorbing or highly transmitting media or obliquely illuminated media,relatively more light is reflected in large polar (grazing) angles. These results areconfirmed by measurements using a set of paper samples. The only situation withisotropic reflectance is when a non-transmitting, non-absorbing medium is illuminateddiffusely, and it is shown that this is the only situation where the widely usedKubelka-Munk model is exactly valid.A number of applied problems is studied, including reflectance measurements,angle resolved color and point spreading. It is seen that differences in instrumentdetection and illumination geometry can result in measurement differences. The differencesare small and if other sources of error — such as fluorescence and gloss— are not eliminated, the differences related to instrument geometry become difficultto discern. Furthermore, the dependence of point spreading in turbid mediaon the medium parameters is studied. The asymmetry factor is varied while maintainingconstant the optical response in a standardized measurement geometry. It isseen that the point spreading increases as forward scattering becomes more dominant,and that the effect is larger if the medium is low-absorbing with large meanfree path. It is argued that the directional inhomogeneity of the scattering mediummust be captured by the model to reproduce experimental results. Finally, the angleresolved color of a set of paper samples is assessed both theoretically and experimentally.The chroma decreases and the lightness increases as the observation polarangle increases. The observed differences are clearly large, and a modification ofthe L∗a∗b∗ formalism including angle dependent chromatic adaptation is suggestedhere to handle this situation.

    The long standing issue of parameter dependence in the Kubelka-Munk modelis partially explained by recognizing that light reflected from paper samples in standardizedmeasurements has angular variations, and by using the appropriatemodelin the calculation of the scattering and absorption coefficients.The radiative transfer (RT) equation is solved with a recently proposed particlemethod (DFPM), both in standard cases and in cases previously considered intractable.Fluorescence is added to the RT equation, thus including wavelength asan additional dimension, and this equation is solved using DFPM. The discrete RTequation can be written as a system of linear equations, and a comprehensive analysisof the convergence properties of DFPM when solving this type of problems ispresented.

  • 194.
    Nilson, Tomas
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Science Education and Mathematics.
    Some matters of great balance2013Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This thesis is based on four papers dealing with two different areas of mathematics.Paper I–III are in combinatorics, while Paper IV is in mathematical physics.In combinatorics, we work with design theory, one of whose applications aredesigning statistical experiments. Specifically, we are interested in symmetric incompleteblock designs (SBIBDs) and triple arrays and also the relationship betweenthese two types of designs.In Paper I, we investigate when a triple array can be balanced for intersectionwhich in the canonical case is equivalent to the inner design of the correspondingsymmetric balanced incomplete block design (SBIBD) being balanced. For this we derivenew existence criteria, and in particular we prove that the residual designof the related SBIBD must be quasi-symmetric, and give necessary and sufficientconditions on the intersection numbers. We also address the question of whenthe inner design is balanced with respect to every block of the SBIBD. We showthat such SBIBDs must possess the quasi-3 property, and we answer the existencequestion for all know classes of these designs.As triple arrays balanced for intersections seem to be very rare, it is natural toask if there are any other families of row-column designs with this property. In PaperII we give necessary and sufficient conditions for balanced grids to be balancedfor intersection and prove that all designs in an infinite family of binary pseudo-Youden designs are balanced for intersection.Existence of triple arrays is an open question. There is one construction of aninfinite, but special family called Paley triple arrays, and one general method forwhich one of the steps is unproved. In Paper III we investigate a third constructionmethod starting from Youden squares. This method was suggested in the literaturea long time ago, but was proven not to work by a counterexample. We show interalia that Youden squares from projective planes can never give a triple array bythis method, but that for every triple array corresponding to a biplane, there is asuitable Youden square for which the method works. Also, we construct the familyof Paley triple arrays by this method.In mathematical physics we work with solitons, which in nature can be seen asself-reinforcing waves acting like particles, and in mathematics as solutions of certainnon-linear differential equations. In Paper IV we study the non-commutativeversion of the two-dimensional Toda lattice for which we construct a family ofsolutions, and derive explicit solution formulas.

  • 195.
    Nilsson, Olof
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Information Technology and Media.
    Access Barriers - from a user´s point of view2005Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Abstract The aim of this thesis is to suggest a model to assist in the ability to judge access by private persons to Information Technology, IT, and to Public Information Sys-tems, PIS. It has its starting point in the Swedish Government´s endeavour to turn Sweden into the first information society for all. When the available statistics con-cerning the access to a PC and the Internet in Swedish homes are studied it is easy to think that this vision may soon be realised. Of course, access to the technical equipment is a fundamental condition in order to be able to use the Public Informa-tion Systems, but unfortunately, is not the only one. A number of studies have shown that it is not possible to equate possession and use. A number of access models or frameworks designed to judge whether or not a person has access to the ICTs do exist. However, it is my opinion that there is a de-ficiency in these models; they do not start out from the individual user´s prerequi-sites, but rather judge the external conditions available for possible access. Assisted by four empirical studies, interviews and questionnaires, a number of ac-cess barriers experienced by the users have been identified. The studies show that in addition to the technological hindrances, a series of more elusive ones also exist originating from prevailing norms and values in the environment the user lives in. The barriers are categorised into five groups; to have, to be able, to will, to may and to dare. Together these notions form the User Centred Access Model, UCAM, which is suggested for use in charting and communicating the necessary considera-tions that must be taken into account in the development of Public Information Sys-tems. Keywords Language

  • 196.
    Norbergh, Karl-Gustaf
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Health Sciences.
    Care of people with dementia: patients' characteristics, organisational climate and staff attitudes2005Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [sv]

    Syftet med denna avhandling var att undersöka funktionsförmågor hos personer med demens vid inflyttning till gruppboende under olika tidsperioder, hur personer med demens tillbringar sin tid i olika vårdformer samt strukturen i vårdares attityder till personer med demens. Data baseras på: 1) retrospektiva data av funktionell förmåga bland personer med demens vid inflyttning till gruppboende; 2) icke-deltagande observationer av patienters aktiviteter (2024 observationer) på en psykogeriatrisk avdelning; 3) icke-deltagande observationer av patienters aktiviteter i gruppboende skattade som ett ”kreativt organisationsklimat” (3061 observationer) och i gruppboende skattade som ett ”mindre kreativt organisationsklimat” (3399 observationer); 4) semantisk differentialteknik för att identifiera strukturen i vårdares attityder till personer med demens (1237 skattningar). Resultatet visar att vid jämförelse av patienternas funktionsförmågor vid inflyttning till gruppboende har beroendet av assistans för att klara dagligt liv ökat dessutom har möjligheten att bo kvar i gruppboende ökat över tid (β= -0.3134; p< 0.001) (I). Studien av personer med demens på en psykogeriatrisk avdelning (II) visar att 31,1 procent av tiden tillbringades med vårdare och 50,3 procent av tiden i ensamhet. De patienter med försämrad kommunikationsförmåga erhöll mindre tid från vårdare (p< 0.001). Jämförelse mellan gruppboendeenheter med ett kreativt organisationsklimat och enheter med ett mindre kreativt klimat (III) visade att i enheter med ett kreativt organisationsklimat tillbringade personerna med demens 45,2 procent av tiden med vårdare och i det mindre kreativa klimatet 25,6 procent (p< 0.001). Den tid som tillbringades i ensamhet var nästan densamma i både det kreativa och mindre kreativa klimatet (39,1% och respektive 38,8%, ns). Fyra dimensioner framkom vid analysen av vårdares attityder till personer med demens, vilka relateras till vårdarnas uppfattning om patienterna utifrån a) en etisk/estetisk dimension, b) förmågan att förstå, c) förmågan att uppleva och d) deras förmåga till sociala interaktioner. På ett positivt till negativt attitydkontinuum visar sig vårdarnas attityder ligga mellan positiva till neutrala attityder. Sammanfattningsvis så har personer med demens förändrats speciellt med avseende på funktionell förmåga vid inflyttning till gruppboende, dessutom har möjligheten att bo kvar ökat. I gruppboende med ett kreativt organisationsklimat tillbringade patienterna mindre tid i ensamhet och patient-vårdar interaktionen ökade. Vidare så är vårdarnas attityder överlag positiva till neutrala på ett positivt till negativt attitydkontinuum och den mest positiva och generella attityden kan ses i den etiska/estetiska dimensionen. Keywords: dementia, group-dwelling, work sampling, patients activities classification, organisational climate, attitudes, semantic differential.

  • 197.
    Nordström, Carin
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Business, Economics and Law.
    The Passionate Combining Entrepreneurs2015Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Entrepreneurs are portrayed as salient drivers of regional development and for a number of years nascent entrepreneurs have been studied in a large number of countries as part of the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor project and the Panel Study of Entrepreneurial Dynamics. Scholars have devoted much effort to investigating factors that determine how individuals engage in entrepreneurial activities, with most of the discussion limited to business start-ups. However, since this type of project does not follow identical nascent entrepreneurs over time, limited knowledge exists about their development and whether they stay in this nascent phase for a long time. In practice, it is common for entrepreneurs to run a business and at the same time work in wage work, so-called combining entrepreneurs. In Sweden, almost half of all business owners combine wage work with a business. However, not all combining entrepreneurs will eventually decide to leave the wage work and invest fully in the business. Consequently, much research has focused on the first step of entering entrepreneurship full time, but less has focused on the second step, the transition from the combining phase to full-time self-employment. The aim of this thesis is therefore to contribute to the theory of entrepreneurship by gaining a deeper understanding of combining entrepreneurs and their motives and intentions.

     

    In the context of combining entrepreneurs, the theory of identity, resources and choice overload has been used to examine how entrepreneurs’ age (when starting the business), entrepreneurial tenure (the length of engagement in the side-business), hours spent (weekly involvement in the side-business), involvement in entrepreneurial teams (leading the business with one or more partners) and involvement in networks (business networks) influence their passion for engaging in entrepreneurship while sustaining wage work. Different categories of combining entrepreneurs and their intentions have also been examined.

     

    A survey was administered to 1457 entrepreneurs within the creative sector in two counties in Sweden (Gävleborgs County and Jämtlands County). Since there were no separate mailing lists to only combining entrepreneurs, the survey was sent to all entrepreneurs within the chosen industry and counties. The total response rate was 33.5 percent and of them 57.6 percent combined, yielding 262 combining entrepreneurs who answered the questionnaire. The survey was then followed up with eight focus group interviews and two single interviews to validate the answers from the questionnaire.

     

    The results indicate three types of combining entrepreneurs: nascent – with the intention to leave the combining phase for a transition into full-time self-employment, lifestyle – with the intention to stay in the combining phase, and occasional – with the intention to leave the combining phase for full-time wage work and close down the business. Transitioning fully to self-employment increases with the individual’s age. Also, a positive interactive effect exists with involvement in entrepreneurial networks. The results also indicate that the ability to work with something one is passionate about is the top motive for combining wage work with a side-business. Passion is also more likely to be the main motive behind the combining form among individuals who are older at business start-up, but passion is less likely to be the main motive behind the combining form among individuals who spend more time on the business. The longer the individual has had the side-business, the less likely passion is the main motive behind the combining form, and passion is less likely to be the main motive among those who are part of an entrepreneurial team.

  • 198.
    Norell, Håkan
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Information Technology and Media.
    Development, analysis and implementation of pre-processing video filters2006Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The usage of video systems in households and industry has increased rapidly over the past few years. The benefits of visual processing, control and inspection have offered great opportunities for real-time video processing systems (RTVPS) for the general public as well as for heavy industries. The high volume market media systems can absorb a great deal of the cost related to the development of standard components, such as Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs). The development of industrial systems can benefit from this new technology by utilizing these cheap components. In this thesis, examples of video processing algorithms suitable for pre-processing of digital video applicable for both industrial and media usage will be shown. In addition a methodology supporting the designer in implementing memory architectures suitable for such algorithms is presented. In this thesis two video processing algorithms are presented and described in detail. The common denominator is their utilization of data from temporally adjacent frames in order to be effective, in terms of compression efficiency, and to produce an attractive result for the viewer. However, from the aspect of quality improvement, considerations have to be taken into account in order to enable an actual hardware implementation. Utilizing data from temporally adjacent frames in a real-time data stream is a non-trivial task. From the algorithm designer’s view the data dependencies and memory requirements are not in focus, but for the hardware designer they are. Having the right data available at the right time is the only consideration in order to have a functional system. Present day algorithm and hardware development methods and architectures do not converge into a common design flow, even though this has been attempted. The gap between the algorithm designer and his/her hardware counterpart has to be bridged in order to obtain an efficient and rapid implementation. Methodologies that abstract and reduce the amount of time spent on implementing memory architectures for video processing applications are required. The buffering requirements are often too complex to analyze manually in order to efficiently utilize the resources available in FPGAs. In this thesis a method for the synthesis and implementation of memory architectures for real-time video processing systems, IMapper, is presented. The architecture supports the implementation of spatio- and temporal video processing algorithms and utilizes methodologies for global optimization of on-fabric available memory resources for FPGAs. This methodology provides an efficient and flexible implementation environment and also offers the benefits of the global optimizations it utilizes

  • 199.
    Norgren, Sven
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Natural Sciences, Engineering and Mathematics.
    Effects of Reject Refining at High Temperature on TMP Fibre Properties2008Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
  • 200.
    Norlin, Börje
    Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Information Technology and Media.
    Characterisation and application of photon counting X-ray detector systems2007Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This thesis concerns the development and characterisation of X-ray imaging systems based on single photon processing. “Colour” X-ray imaging opens up new perspectives within the fields of medical X-ray diagnosis and also in industrial X-ray quality control. The difference in absorption for different “colours” can be used to discern materials in the object. For instance, this information might be used to identify diseases such as brittle-bone disease. The “colour” of the X-rays can be identified if the detector system can process each X-ray photon individually. Such a detector system is called a “single photon processing” system or, less precise, a “photon counting system”.

    With modern technology it is possible to construct photon counting detector systems that can resolve details to a level of approximately 50 µm. However with such small pixels a problem will occur. In a semiconductor detector each absorbed X-ray photon creates a cloud of charge which contributes to the image. For high photon energies the size of the charge cloud is comparable to 50 µm and might be distributed between several pixels in the image. Charge sharing is a key problem since, not only is the resolution degenerated, but it also destroys the “colour” information in the image.

    This thesis presents characterisation and simulations to provide a detailed understanding of the physical processes concerning charge sharing in detectors from the MEDIPIX collaboration. Charge summing schemes utilising pixel to pixel communications are proposed. Charge sharing can also be suppressed by introducing 3D-detector structures. In the next generation of the MEDIPIX system, Medipix3, charge summing will be implemented. This system, equipped with a 3D-silicon detector, or a thin planar high-Z detector of good quality, has the potential to become a commercial product for medical imaging. This would be beneficial to the public health within the entire European Union.

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