Crucial Step
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2022 ◽  
Maarten van Es ◽  
Mehmet Tamer ◽  
Robbert Bloem ◽  
Laurent Fillinger ◽  
Elfi van Zeijl ◽  

Abstract Patterning photoresist with extreme control over dose and placement is the first crucial step in semiconductor manufacturing. But, how to accurately measure the activation of modern complex resists components at sufficient spatial resolution? No exposed nanometre-scale resist pattern is sufficiently sturdy to unaltered withstand inspection by intense photon or electron beams, not even after processing and development. This paper presents experimental proof that Infra-Red Atomic Force Microscopy (IR-AFM) is sufficiently sensitive and gentle to chemically record the vulnerable-yet-valuable lithographic patterns in a chemically amplified resist after exposure, prior to development. Accordingly, IR-AFM metrology provides the long-sought-for insights in changes in the chemical and spatial distribution per component in a latent resist image, both directly after exposure as well as during processing. With these to-be-gained understandings, a disruptive acceleration of resist design and processing is expected.

2022 ◽  
Christian Heubner ◽  
Tobias Liebmann ◽  
Michael Schneider ◽  
Alexander Michaelis

The effective use of energy from sustainable sources is considered a crucial step on the way to a CO2-neutral economy. Low-grade waste heat (< 100°C) is widely and ubiquitously available,...

2021 ◽  
Vol 11 (2) ◽  
pp. 144-158
Mohamed Walid Hamlaoui ◽  
Ahmed Hadef ◽  
Fawzi Rostane Meklati ◽  
Imane Bital

The control of mastitis is a crucial step in the preparation of the next lactation in dairy cows. In order to assess the practices and attitudes surrounding the use of antimicrobials at dry-off, a survey was conducted among veterinary practitioners in fifteen provinces of Northern Algeria. The results revealed that 45.95% of the farms followed by the respondents were rather small in size comprising about ten cows per farm and that a large majority of the farmers practised gradual drying off (72.97%) without adjusting the feed ration (70.27%) to this stage. Antibiotic dry cow therapy (DCT) was a common practice and selectively performed in 86.49% of cases regardless of udder health status. Cefalexin was the most infused intra-mammary (IMM) antibiotic (40.54%), while tylosin was the one favoured for parenteral administration (48.15%). Analysis of factors influencing the antibiotic DCT efficacy showed that a frequent (13.51%) occurrence of new intramammary infections (IMIs) was related to farmers’ attitudes (self-medication) and the policy of blanket DCT. Although the use of a teat sealant was uncommon (71.43%) in the farming traditions, the substitution of antibiotics seems to be a plausible prospect, since the majority of participants (89.19%) agreed with the implementation of aromatherapy concept at dry-off, mainly as a complement to antibiotics. This survey gives an overview of risk practices regarding mastitis management in northern Algeria. Hence, further zootechnical, veterinary and organizational efforts need to be made to promote animal production and welfare as well as public health through improved udder health.

2021 ◽  
Vol 12 ◽  
Pablo Carril ◽  
Joana Cruz ◽  
Claudia di Serio ◽  
Giuseppe Pieraccini ◽  
Sylia Ait Bessai ◽  

Plants and their associated microbiota share ecological and evolutionary traits that are considered to be inseparably woven. Their coexistence foresees the use of similar metabolic pathways, leading to the generation of molecules that can cross-regulate each other’s metabolism and ultimately influence plant phenotype. However, the extent to which the microbiota contributes to the overall plant metabolic landscape remains largely unexplored. Due to their early presence in the seed, seed-borne endophytic bacteria can intimately colonize the plant’s endosphere while conferring a series of phytobeneficial services to their host. Understanding the dynamics of these endophytic communities is a crucial step toward the formulation of microbial inoculants that can modulate the functionality of the plant-associated microbiota for improved plant fitness. In this work, wheat (Triticum aestivum) roots non-inoculated and inoculated with the bacterium Herbaspirillum seropedicae strain RAM10 were analyzed to explore the impact of inoculant–endophyte–wheat interrelationships on the regulation of tryptophan (Trp) metabolism in the endosphere environment. Root inoculation with H. seropedicae led to phylum-specific changes in the cultivable seed-borne endophytic community. This modulation shifted the metabolic potential of the community in light of its capacity to modulate the levels of key Trp-related metabolites involved in both indole-3-acetic acid (IAA) biosynthesis and in the kynurenine pathway. Our results support a mode of action of H. seropedicae relying on a shift in both the composition and functionality of the seed-borne endophytic community, which may govern important processes such as root growth. We finally provide a conceptual framework illustrating that interactions among roots, inoculants, and seed-borne endophytes are critical to fine-tuning the levels of IAA in the endosphere. Understanding the outcomes of these interactions is a crucial step toward the formulation of microbial inoculants based on their joint action with seed-borne endophytic communities to promote crop growth and health in a sustainable manner.

2021 ◽  
Vol 2021 ◽  
pp. 1-9
Hongrui Ma ◽  
Hua Lin

A rapidly growing body of evidence supports that neuroinflammation plays a major role in epileptogenesis and disease progression. The capacity to identify pathological neuroinflammation in individuals with epilepsy is a crucial step on the timing of anti-inflammatory intervention and patient selection, which will be challenging aspects in future clinical studies. The discovery of noninvasive biomarkers that are accessible in the blood or molecular neuroimaging would facilitate clinical translation of experimental findings into humans. These innovative and noninvasive approaches have the advantage of monitoring the dynamic changes of neuroinflammation in epilepsy. Here, we will review the available evidence for the measurement of neuroinflammation in patients with epilepsy using noninvasive techniques and critically analyze the major scientific challenges of noninvasive methods. Finally, we propose the potential for use in clinical applications.

Julián López-Gómez ◽  
Juan Carlos Sampedro

AbstractIn this paper, we prove an analogue of the uniqueness theorems of Führer [15] and Amann and Weiss [1] to cover the degree of Fredholm operators of index zero constructed by Fitzpatrick, Pejsachowicz and Rabier [13], whose range of applicability is substantially wider than for the most classical degrees of Brouwer [5] and Leray–Schauder [22]. A crucial step towards the axiomatization of this degree is provided by the generalized algebraic multiplicity of Esquinas and López-Gómez [8, 9, 25], $$\chi $$ χ , and the axiomatization theorem of Mora-Corral [28, 32]. The latest result facilitates the axiomatization of the parity of Fitzpatrick and Pejsachowicz [12], $$\sigma (\cdot ,[a,b])$$ σ ( · , [ a , b ] ) , which provides the key step for establishing the uniqueness of the degree for Fredholm maps.

2021 ◽  
Andreas M Kist ◽  
Stephan Duerr ◽  
Anne Schuetzenberger ◽  
Marion Semmler

Glottis segmentation is a crucial step to quantify endoscopic footage in laryngeal high-speed videoendoscopy. Recent advances in using deep neural networks for glottis segmentation allow a fully automatic workflow. However, exact knowledge of integral parts of these segmentation deep neural networks remains unknown. Here, we show using systematic ablations that a single latent channel as bottleneck layer is sufficient for glottal area segmentation. We further show that the latent space is an abstraction of the glottal area segmentation relying on three spatially defined pixel subtypes. We provide evidence that the latent space is highly correlated with the glottal area waveform, can be encoded with four bits, and decoded using lean decoders while maintaining a high reconstruction accuracy. Our findings suggest that glottis segmentation is a task that can be highly optimized to gain very efficient and clinical applicable deep neural networks. In future, we believe that online deep learning-assisted monitoring is a game changer in laryngeal examinations.

2021 ◽  
Vol 69 (2) ◽  
pp. 70-75
Sohana Jahan ◽  
Moriyam Akter ◽  
Sifta Yeasmin ◽  
Farhana Ahmed Simi

Facial expression recognition is one of the most reliable and a key technology of advanced human-computer interaction with the rapid development of computer vision and artificial intelligence. Nowadays, there has been a growing interest in improving expression recognition techniques. In most of the cases, automatic recognition system’s efficiency depends on the represented facial expression feature. Even the best classifier may fail to achieve a good recognition rate if inadequate features are provided. Therefore, feature extraction is a crucial step of the facial expression recognition process. In this paper, we have used Regularized Supervised Distance Preserving Projection for extracting the best features of the images. Numerical experiment shows that the use of this technique outperforms many of state of art approaches in terms of recognition rate. Dhaka Univ. J. Sci. 69(2): 70-75, 2021 (July)

2021 ◽  
Nicolai N. Bach ◽  
Verena Josef ◽  
Harald Maid ◽  
Henry Dube

Molecular motors transform external energy input into directional motions and offer exquisite precision for nano-scale manipulations. In order to make full use of molecular motor capacities, their directional motions need to be transmitted and used for powering downstream molecular events – a current great challenge for molecular engineers. Here we present a macrocyclic molecular motor structure able to perform repetitive molecular threading of a flexible polyethylene glycol chain through the macrocycle. This mechanical threading event is actively powered by the motor motions and leads to a direct translation of the unidirectional motor rotation into an unidirectional translation motion (chain versus ring). The step by step mechanism of the active mechanical threading is elucidated and also the actual threading step is identified as a combined helix inversion and threading event. The here established molecular machine function resembles the crucial step of macroscopic weaving or sewing processes and therefore offers a first entry point for realizing a “molecular knitting” counterpart.

2021 ◽  
Ellen J Coombs ◽  
Ryan N Felice

Three-dimensional measurements of morphology are key to gaining an understanding of a species' biology and to answering subsequent questions regarding the processes of ecology (or palaeoecology), function, and evolution. However, the collection of morphometric data is often focused on methods designed to produce data on bilaterally symmetric morphologies which may mischaracterise asymmetric structures. Using 3D landmark and curve data on 3D surface meshes of specimens, we present a method for first quantifying the level of asymmetry in a specimen and second, accurately capturing the morphology of asymmetric specimens for further geometric analyses. We provide an example of the process from initial landmark placement, including details on how to place landmarks to quantify the level of asymmetry, and then on how to use this information to accurately capture the morphology of asymmetric morphologies or structures. We use toothed whales (odontocetes) as a case study and include examples of the consequences of mirroring landmarks and curves, a method commonly used in bilaterally symmetrical specimens, on asymmetric specimens. We conclude by presenting a step-by-step method to collecting 3D landmark data on asymmetric specimens. Additionally, we provide code for placing landmarks and curves on asymmetric specimens in a manner designed to both save time and ultimately accurately quantify morphology. This method can be used as a first crucial step in morphometric analyses of any biological specimens by assessing levels of asymmetry and then if required, accurately quantifying this asymmetry. The latter not only saves the researcher time, but also accurately represents the morphology of asymmetric structures.

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