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Designs, Volume 5, Issue 2 (June 2021) – 13 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Recent population migrations have led to numerous accidents and deaths. This article presents a review of the techniques that can be used in a robot’s swarm to find, locate, protect and help migrants in hazardous environments, such as militarized zones. The paper presents a swarm interaction taxonomy and includes a detailed study on the control of swarms with and without interaction. As the interaction mainly occurs in cluttered or crowded environments (with obstacles), the paper discusses the algorithms related to navigation that can be included with an interaction strategy. View this paper
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Review
Swarm Robotic Interactions in an Open and Cluttered Environment: A Survey
Designs 2021, 5(2), 37; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/designs5020037 - 10 Jun 2021
Viewed by 561
Abstract
Recent population migrations have led to numerous accidents and deaths. Little research has been done to help migrants in their journey. For this reason, a literature review of the latest research conducted in previous years is required to identify new research trends in [...] Read more.
Recent population migrations have led to numerous accidents and deaths. Little research has been done to help migrants in their journey. For this reason, a literature review of the latest research conducted in previous years is required to identify new research trends in human-swarm interaction. This article presents a review of techniques that can be used in a robots swarm to find, locate, protect and help migrants in hazardous environment such as militarized zone. The paper presents a swarm interaction taxonomy including a detailed study on the control of swarm with and without interaction. As the interaction mainly occurs in cluttered or crowded environment (with obstacles) the paper discussed the algorithms related to navigation that can be included with an interaction strategy. It focused on comparing algorithms and their advantages and disadvantages. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Design of Autonomous and Unmanned Systems)
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Article
Generating Component Designs for an Improved NVH Performance by Using an Artificial Neural Network as an Optimization Metamodel
Designs 2021, 5(2), 36; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/designs5020036 - 03 Jun 2021
Viewed by 780
Abstract
In modern vehicle development, suspension components have to meet many boundary conditions. In noise, vibration, and harshness (NVH) development these are for example eigenfrequencies and frequency response function (FRF) amplitudes. Component geometry parameters, for example kinematic hard points, often affect multiple of these [...] Read more.
In modern vehicle development, suspension components have to meet many boundary conditions. In noise, vibration, and harshness (NVH) development these are for example eigenfrequencies and frequency response function (FRF) amplitudes. Component geometry parameters, for example kinematic hard points, often affect multiple of these targets in a non intuitive way. In this article, we present a practical approach to find optimized parameters for a component design, which fulfills an FRF target curve. By morphing an initial component finite element model we create training data for an artificial neural network (ANN) which predicts FRFs from geometry parameter input. Then the ANN serves as a metamodel for an evolutionary algorithm optimizer which identifies fitting geometry parameter sets, meeting an FRF target curve. The methodology enables a component design which considers an FRF as a component target. In multiple simulation examples we demonstrate the capability of identifying component designs modifying specific eigenfrequency or amplitude features of the FRFs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Design of Autonomous and Unmanned Systems)
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Article
Usability Study through a Human-Robot Collaborative Workspace Experience
Designs 2021, 5(2), 35; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/designs5020035 - 28 May 2021
Viewed by 831
Abstract
The use of collaborative robots (cobots) in industrial and academic settings facilitates physical and cognitive interaction with operators. This framework is a challenge to determine how measures on concepts, such as usability, can be adapted to these new environments. Usability is a quality [...] Read more.
The use of collaborative robots (cobots) in industrial and academic settings facilitates physical and cognitive interaction with operators. This framework is a challenge to determine how measures on concepts, such as usability, can be adapted to these new environments. Usability is a quality attribute prevalent in the field of human-computer interaction concerning the context of use and the measure of effectiveness, efficiency, and satisfaction of products and systems. In this work, the importance of the role of benchmarking usability with collaborative robots is discussed. The introduced approach is part of a general methodology for studying people and robots’ performance in collaboration. It is being designed and developed on a concrete experience into a human-robot collaborative workspace. Outcomes from the study include a list of steps, resources, recommendations, and some customized questionnaires to obtain cobot-oriented usability analysis and case study results. Full article
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Article
Effect of the Inlet Boundary Conditions on the Flow over Complex Terrain Using Large Eddy Simulation
Designs 2021, 5(2), 34; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/designs5020034 - 26 May 2021
Viewed by 678
Abstract
For large eddy simulation, it is critical to choose the suitable turbulent inlet boundary condition as it significantly affects the calculated flow field. In this paper, the effect of different inlet boundary conditions, including random method (RAND), Lund method, and divergence-free synthetic eddies [...] Read more.
For large eddy simulation, it is critical to choose the suitable turbulent inlet boundary condition as it significantly affects the calculated flow field. In this paper, the effect of different inlet boundary conditions, including random method (RAND), Lund method, and divergence-free synthetic eddies method (DFSEM), on the flow in a channel with a hump are investigated through large-eddy simulation. The simulation results are further compared with experimental data. It has been found that turbulence is nearly fully developed in the case based on the Lund method, not fully developed in the case based on DFSEM, and not developed in the case based on the RAND method. In the flow region before the hump, mean velocity profiles in the case applying the Lund method gradually fit the law of the wall as the main flow moves towards the hump, but the simulation results based on the RAND and DFSEM methods cannot fit the wall function. In the flow region after the hump, cases applying Lund and DFSEM methods could relative precisely predict the size of turbulent bubble and turbulent statistics profiles. Meanwhile, the case based on the RAND method cannot capture the positions of flow separation and re-attachment point and overestimates the turbulent bubble size. From this research, it could be found that different turbulent inflow generation methods have a manifested impact on the flow separation and re-attachment after the hump. If the coherent turbulence is maintained in the approach flow, even though turbulent intensity is not large enough, the simulation can still predict the flow separation and turbulent bubble size relative precisely. Full article
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Article
West Bay Business District in Doha, State of Qatar: Envisioning a Vibrant Transit-Oriented Development
Designs 2021, 5(2), 33; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/designs5020033 - 25 May 2021
Viewed by 477
Abstract
In recent decades, Doha, the capital of Qatar, has experienced a large-scale transformation due to globalization and rapid economic growth. Recently, these changes have led to a focus on infrastructural development and the launch of the city’s metro project, whose success will depend [...] Read more.
In recent decades, Doha, the capital of Qatar, has experienced a large-scale transformation due to globalization and rapid economic growth. Recently, these changes have led to a focus on infrastructural development and the launch of the city’s metro project, whose success will depend heavily on Transit-Oriented Development (TOD). TOD focuses on the “3Ds” principles—design, density, and diversity—aiming to create walkable neighborhoods and well-integrated public transportation, with diverse mixed land uses and high-density, sustainable growth. In combining the concepts of livability, sustainable urbanism, and urban sociology, TOD leads to the creation of vibrant and active neighborhoods. The present research project focuses on TOD around Doha’s West Bay metro station, using the city’s central business district as a case study. The aim of this research project is to investigate the existing site conditions of the West Bay area, evaluate them with respect to TOD principles, and then propose a master plan for improved development. The final product of the research project is a proposal with design guidelines that are aimed at increasing the ridership of the West Bay metro station and creating a more attractive and dynamic neighborhood. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable and Conventional Buildings)
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Article
Chroma Enhancement in CIELAB Color Space Using a Lookup Table
Designs 2021, 5(2), 32; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/designs5020032 - 14 May 2021
Viewed by 858
Abstract
In this study, we present a method of chroma enhancement in the CIELAB color space and compare it with that in the RGB color space. Color image enhancement using the CIELAB color space has the disadvantage that the color gamut problem occurs because [...] Read more.
In this study, we present a method of chroma enhancement in the CIELAB color space and compare it with that in the RGB color space. Color image enhancement using the CIELAB color space has the disadvantage that the color gamut problem occurs because the conversion to the RGB color space is necessary to display the image. However, since the CIELAB color space is based on human visual perception, the quality of the resulting images is expected to be higher than that of the RGB color space. In the method using the CIELAB color space, we introduce a lookup table to reduce the calculation costs. Experiments comparing image enhancement results obtained from two color spaces are performed using several digital images. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Electrical Engineering)
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Article
A Unique Transdisciplinary Engineering-Based Integrated Approach for the Design of Temporary Refugee Housing Using Kano, HOQ/QFD, TRIZ, AD, ISM and DSM Tools
Designs 2021, 5(2), 31; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/designs5020031 - 10 May 2021
Viewed by 668
Abstract
The continued displacement of refugees from their homes and homelands (now greater than 50 million people worldwide) places increased focus and attention on evolving the designs of temporary housing that is available to be provided to the refugee population, especially in rural areas [...] Read more.
The continued displacement of refugees from their homes and homelands (now greater than 50 million people worldwide) places increased focus and attention on evolving the designs of temporary housing that is available to be provided to the refugee population, especially in rural areas where housing does not already exist and must be constructed in very little time. Complex engineering problems involving social issues, such as this case study, benefit from the use of Integrated Transdisciplinary (TD) Tools (ITDT) to effectively and efficiently address the design questions related to them. The integrated use of TD Tools such as Kano Analysis, KJ Diagrams, Critical to Quality (CTQ), House of Quality (HOQ)/Quality Function Design (QFD), Theory of Inventive Problem Solving (TRIZ), Axiomatic Design (AD), Interpretive Structural Modeling (ISM), and Design Structure Matrix (DSM) through an end-to-end unique design process leads to innovation and elimination of design conflicts for especially complicated design problems. The objective of this study is to examine the design of temporary refugee housing using integrated TD tools mentioned above. This research concludes that the use of the ITDT approach provides an innovative, decoupled design. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Architecture Design)
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Article
Towards a Live Feedback Training System: Interchangeability of Orbbec Persee and Microsoft Kinect for Exercise Monitoring
Designs 2021, 5(2), 30; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/designs5020030 - 15 Apr 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 772
Abstract
Many existing motion sensing applications in research, entertainment and exercise monitoring are based on the Microsoft Kinect and its skeleton tracking functionality. With the Kinect’s development and production halted, researchers and system designers are in need of a suitable replacement. We investigated the [...] Read more.
Many existing motion sensing applications in research, entertainment and exercise monitoring are based on the Microsoft Kinect and its skeleton tracking functionality. With the Kinect’s development and production halted, researchers and system designers are in need of a suitable replacement. We investigated the interchangeability of the discontinued Kinect v2 and the all-in-one, image-based motion tracking system Orbbec Persee for the use in an exercise monitoring system prototype called ILSE. Nine functional training exercises were performed by six healthy subjects in front of both systems simultaneously. Comparing the systems’ internal tracking states from ’not tracked’ to ‘tracked’ showed that the Persee system is more confident during motion sequences, while the Kinect is more confident for hip and trunk joint positions. Assessing the skeleton tracking robustness, the Persee’s tracking of body segment lengths was more consistent. Furthermore, we used both skeleton datasets as input for the ILSE exercise monitoring including posture recognition and repetition-counting. Persee data from exercises with lateral movement and in uncovered full-body frontal view provided the same results as Kinect data. The Persee further preferred tracking of quasi-static lower limb motions and tight-fitting clothes. With these limitations in mind, we find that the Orbbec Persee is a suitable replacement for the Microsoft Kinect for motion sensing within the ILSE exercise monitoring system. Full article
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Article
Design Preconditions for Product–Service Integration
Designs 2021, 5(2), 29; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/designs5020029 - 13 Apr 2021
Viewed by 831
Abstract
User expectations regarding new products and services are evolving rapidly, forcing innovative organizations to explore new avenues for innovation, combining products and services. This paper focuses on the integrative design of product–service systems (PSSs) and builds on the servitization and service-based innovation literature. [...] Read more.
User expectations regarding new products and services are evolving rapidly, forcing innovative organizations to explore new avenues for innovation, combining products and services. This paper focuses on the integrative design of product–service systems (PSSs) and builds on the servitization and service-based innovation literature. Many tools have been proposed for designing integrated PSS, with the intent to generate economic and/or sustainable impact. In this article, we focus on tools being used for bringing the user experience and intangibles in the design process. Although the literature is rich with tools and methods to optimize the PSS design process, it does not consider the full array of methods and their impact. This lack of research attention might hinder organizations developing PSS. Using in-depth interviews, this qualitative research systematically combines the extant conceptual literature on PSS design tools and processes with expert insights, thereby contextualizing how to lower thresholds in PSS design processes and how to increase the effectiveness of PSS design tools. The paper contributes to the literature on servitization and PSS by explicitly identifying twenty-one preconditions that support the PSS design process while integrating product and service innovation in close relation to the end-user. Full article
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Case Report
Capacitor Commutation Method for MVDC Hybrid Circuit Breakers
Designs 2021, 5(2), 28; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/designs5020028 - 13 Apr 2021
Viewed by 622
Abstract
The medium voltage DC (MVDC) type system can connect multiple terminals to a common MVDC bus, so it is possible to connect several renewable DC power sources to the common MVDC bus, but a DC circuit breaker is needed to isolate short circuit [...] Read more.
The medium voltage DC (MVDC) type system can connect multiple terminals to a common MVDC bus, so it is possible to connect several renewable DC power sources to the common MVDC bus, but a DC circuit breaker is needed to isolate short circuit accidents that may occur in the MVDC bus. For this purpose, the concept of a hybrid DC circuit breaker that takes advantage of a low conduction loss contact type switch and an arcless-breaking semiconductor switch has been proposed. During break the hybrid switch, a dedicated current commutation device is required to temporarily bypass the load current flowing through the main switch into a semiconductor switch branch. Existing current commutation methods include a proactive method and a reverse current injection method by a LC (Inductor-capacitor) resonant circuit. This paper proposes a power circuit of a new MVDC hybrid circuit breaker using a low withstanding voltage capacitor branch for commutation and a sequence controller according to it, and verifies its operation through an experiment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Electrical Engineering)
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Article
Medium-Term Regional Electricity Load Forecasting through Machine Learning and Deep Learning
Designs 2021, 5(2), 27; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/designs5020027 - 06 Apr 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1035
Abstract
Due to severe climate change impact on electricity consumption, as well as new trends in smart grids (such as the use of renewable resources and the advent of prosumers and energy commons), medium-term and long-term electricity load forecasting has become a crucial need. [...] Read more.
Due to severe climate change impact on electricity consumption, as well as new trends in smart grids (such as the use of renewable resources and the advent of prosumers and energy commons), medium-term and long-term electricity load forecasting has become a crucial need. Such forecasts are necessary to support the plans and decisions related to the capacity evaluation of centralized and decentralized power generation systems, demand response strategies, and controlling the operation. To address this problem, the main objective of this study is to develop and compare precise district level models for predicting the electrical load demand based on machine learning techniques including support vector machine (SVM) and Random Forest (RF), and deep learning methods such as non-linear auto-regressive exogenous (NARX) neural network and recurrent neural networks (Long Short-Term Memory—LSTM). A dataset including nine years of historical load demand for Bruce County, Ontario, Canada, fused with the climatic information (temperature and wind speed) are used to train the models after completing the preprocessing and cleaning stages. The results show that by employing deep learning, the model could predict the load demand more accurately than SVM and RF, with an R-Squared of about 0.93–0.96 and Mean Absolute Percentage Error (MAPE) of about 4–10%. The model can be used not only by the municipalities as well as utility companies and power distributors in the management and expansion of electricity grids; but also by the households to make decisions on the adoption of home- and district-scale renewable energy technologies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Aerospace, Vehicles, and Civil Engineering Design Automation)
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Article
Proposal for a Methodology for Sustainable Rehabilitation Strategies of the Existing Building Stock—The Ponte Gêa Neighborhood
Designs 2021, 5(2), 26; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/designs5020026 - 02 Apr 2021
Viewed by 848
Abstract
Having in mind the objectives of the United Nations Development Agenda 2030, which refers to the sustainable principles of a circular economy, it is urgent to improve the performance of the built environment. The existing buildings must be preserved and improved in order [...] Read more.
Having in mind the objectives of the United Nations Development Agenda 2030, which refers to the sustainable principles of a circular economy, it is urgent to improve the performance of the built environment. The existing buildings must be preserved and improved in order to reduce their environmental impact, in line with the need to revert climate change and reduce the occurrence of natural disasters. This work had as its main goal to identify and define a methodology for promoting the rehabilitation of buildings in the Ponte Gêa neighborhood, in the city of Beira, Mozambique, with an emphasis on energy efficiency, water efficiency, and construction and demolition waste management. The proposed methodology aims to create a decision support method for creating strategic measures to be implemented by considering the three specific domains—energy, water, and waste. This model allows for analyzing the expected improvement according to the action to be performed, exploring both individual and community solutions. It encompasses systems of standard supply that can reveal greater efficiency and profitability. Thus, the in-depth knowledge of the characteristics of urban space and buildings allows for establishing guidelines for the renovation process of the neighborhood. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Architecture Design)
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Article
Spraying Cooling System for PV Modules: Experimental Measurements for Temperature Trends Assessment and System Design Feasibility
Designs 2021, 5(2), 25; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/designs5020025 - 01 Apr 2021
Viewed by 639
Abstract
The hallmark of the PhotoVoltaic (PV) electricity generation is its sustainability, while its main weakness is the low conversion efficiency. A drawback to which is added the PV cell sensitivity to temperature variations: the higher the cell operating temperature, the lower the efficiency. [...] Read more.
The hallmark of the PhotoVoltaic (PV) electricity generation is its sustainability, while its main weakness is the low conversion efficiency. A drawback to which is added the PV cell sensitivity to temperature variations: the higher the cell operating temperature, the lower the efficiency. Considering that in-operation modules reach a conversion efficiency in the range of 10 to 15%, there is an urgent need to control their temperature to enhance the electricity generation. To this purpose, the authors developed a PV spraying cooling system able to drastically knockdown modules operating temperature. Using experimental measurements acquired through a dedicated test rig and after an in-depth literature review, the authors analyze the nozzles number, geometry, and position, as well as water and module’s temperature distribution, limestones formation, degradation of front glass properties, water consumption, and module power production with and without the cooling system. The experimental campaign shows that a cooling system equipped with three nozzles with a spraying angle of 90°, powered by water at 1.5 bar and managed in ON/OFF mode (30 s on to 180 s off), can improve the module’s efficiency from 11.18% to 13.27% thanks to a temperature reduction of up to 24 °C. Despite the improvement in electricity production (from 178.88 W to 212.31 W per single module), at the time of writing, the equipment and installation costs as well as the plant arrangement complexity make the investment not eligible for financing also in the case of a 1 MW floating PV facilities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Planning for Home Renewable Energy Systems)
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