690 Works

Towards a Global Rhetoric: Theory, Practice, Pedagogy

Mark Robert Hoffmann
This dissertation works towards building a theory of "global rhetoric" as well as practical strategies for both using and teaching global rhetorical principles. Global rhetoric, as I suggest, describes argumentation that maintains persuasive potential for audiences beyond the rhetor's immediate location and time. I build this theory of global rhetoric by offering three "case studies" of exemplary global rhetorical texts: Leo Tolstoy's The Kingdom of God Is Within You (1893), Randolph Bourne's "The State" (1919),...


Yunju Jung Kim
This thesis studied the synthesis and control of morphology of two kinds of polymers by modified suspension polymerization techniques. The first polymer, poly (methyl methacrylate), is a transparent thermoplastic polymer, which is typically used in diffusing film in the backlight unit of an LCD. Also, the synthesis of micron-sized polymer particles with complex internal morphologies such as hollows, multihollows, and multiporous structures is of growing interest in many technological applications such as microelectronic displays and...


Abhishek Sharma
This dissertation takes inspiration from the abilities of our brain to extract information and learn from multiple sources of data and try to mimic this ability for some practical problems. It explores the hypothesis that the human brain can extract and store information from raw data in a form, termed a common representation, suitable for cross-modal content matching. A human-level performance for the aforementioned task requires - a) the ability to extract sufficient information from...


Shang-Hsuan Lin
Channels are essential for controlling the permeability of cellular membranes. The regulation of channel gating therefore plays an important role physiologically. Voltage-gating is one of the regulations that cells utilize wherein the change in transmembrane potential cause conformational changes in channels. Here a novel bacterial channel from Escherichia coli with remarkable voltage-gating properties is reported. When the channel-forming protein was reconstituted into a planar phospholipid membrane, two different types of channel activities were observed. Type...


In this thesis we have demonstrated the cascading of two photonic AND logic gates by using two symmetric semiconductor GaAs microring resonators. In addition, we have developed a new, low-cost method for fabricating glass microring resonators. In the first part of this work, we discuss the properties of microring resonators and describe the fabrication of semiconductor microring resonators by the research team of which I was a member. In the experiments on cascaded logic gates...

Exploration of Lithium Ion Binding to Magnesium Bound Adenosine Triphosphate and Its Implications for Bipolar Disorder

Katharine Therese Briggs
Lithium carbonate, a drug for the treatment of Bipolar Disorder, provides mood stability to treat an illness that causes recurrent episodes of mania and/or depression. The mechanism by which lithium acts to elicit these psychological changes remains unknown. Interestingly, this small bio-active salt has been shown to reduce the risk of suicide, and appears to lower the incidence of Alzheimer’s disease. It has been proposed that lithium inhibits magnesium-dependent enzymes; however, there is no consensus...

Exploring childhood obesity through multiple levels of influence: An examination of the social and environmental context for healthy weight among minority youth and parents

Chandria Denise Jones
Childhood obesity is a major public health problem disproportionately affecting low-income minority populations. Although obesity is prevalent in these communities, little is known about how social and environmental factors affect behaviors related to achieving and maintaining a healthy weight among minority youth and parents. In this dissertation, two studies were conducted on data from 14 focus groups with African American, Hispanic and Latino, and American Indian parents over the age of 18 and youth ages...

Do Cellmates Matter? A Study of Prison Peer Effects under Essential Heterogeneity

Heather Michele Harris
This study examines prison peer effects in an adult prison population in the United States using a unique dataset assembled from the administrative databases of the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections. The members of a first-time prison release cohort were identified and matched to each of the cellmates with whom they shared a double cell. These data were then linked to arrest history data from the Pennsylvania State Police. Criminological theories of social influence expect unobserved...


Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) presents a significant public health challenge. Given the symptoms heterogeneity and widespread changes in brain structure and Function in MDD, there may be several subtypes of depression not sufficiently distinguished by current diagnostic criteria but important to recognize to improve clinical outcomes. One of the two core symptoms of MDD is `markedly diminished interest or pleasure in all, or almost all, activities most of the day, nearly every day' and is...

In Situ Growth and Doping Studies of Topological Insulator Bismuth Selenide

John Thery Hellerstedt
The past decade has borne witness to the rapid development of a new field of theoretical and experimental condensed matter physics commonly referred to as "topological insulators". In a (experimentalist's) single sentence a topological insulator can be thought of as material that behaves like an empty metal box: the i-dimensional material (i = 2,3) is insulating, but conducting states exist at the (i-1)-dimensional boundaries. These edge or surface states possess non-trivial properties that have generated...

Optimization Models for Speed Control in Air Traffic Management

James Calvin Jones
In a typical air traffic control environment, the precise landing times of en route aircraft are not set until each aircraft approaches the airspace adjacent to the destination airport. In times of congestion, it is not unusual for air traffic controllers to subject arriving aircraft to various maneuvers to create an orderly flow of flights onto an arrival runway. Typical maneuvers include flying in zig-zag patterns, flying in race track shaped patterns and tromboning. These...

Modeling the Influence of Phase Boundaries and Oxygen Interstitials on the Nucleation and Growth of Deformation Twins in the Alpha-Phase of Titanium Alloys

William Joseph Joost
Twinning is an important deformation mechanism in many hexagonal close packed metals, including alpha-titanium alloys. However, the processes of twin nucleation, growth, and interaction with other defects are not well understood. Further, many aspects of deformation twinning are difficult to interrogate experimentally owing to the small time and length scales of the governing mechanisms. In this study we apply a combination of theoretical and computational materials science techniques, leveraged with experimental data, to quantify the...

Broadband Photodetection in Graphene

Xinghan Cai
Graphene, a single-atom-thick plane of carbon, has unique optoelectronic properties that result in a variety of potential photonic applications, such as optical modulators, plasmonic devices and THz emitters. In this thesis, the light-matter interaction in monolayer graphene and the subsequent photoexcited charge carrier transport are studied, and it is found that graphene has unique advantages for hot-electron photothermoelectric detection. Particularly promising is detection of terahertz (THz) radiation, in which graphene devices may offer significant advantages...

Estimating the fraction of absorbed photosynthetically active radiation from multiple satellite data

Xin Tao
The fraction of absorbed photosynthetically active radiation (FAPAR) is a critical input parameter in many climate and ecological models. The accuracy of satellite FAPAR products directly influences estimates of ecosystem productivity and carbon stocks. The targeted accuracy of FAPAR products is 10%, or 0.05, for many applications. This study evaluates satellite FAPAR products, presents a new FAPAR estimation model and develops data fusion schemes to improve the FAPAR accuracy. Five global FAPAR products, namely MODIS,...


Charles Mueller
HerA proteins are members of the FtsK-HerA superfamily of P-loop ATPases. FtsK is a bacterial protein that translocates double-stranded DNA during cell division. In archaea, herA is an essential gene that encodes an enzyme believed to be important for recombinational DNA repair. It is typically found in an operon with a gene that codes for a nuclease, nurA. Homologs of herA and nurA are found in a few bacterial genomes. In most cases, these bacteria...

Characterizing forest disturbance dynamics in the humid tropics using optical and LIDAR remotely sensed data sets

Alexandra Tyukavina
Human-induced tropical deforestation and forest degradation are widely recognized as major environmental threats, negatively affecting tropical forest ecosystem services, such as biodiversity and climate regulation. To mitigate the effects of forest disturbance, particularly carbon emissions, national forest monitoring systems are being established throughout the tropics. Multiple good practice guidelines aimed at developing accurate, compatible and cost-effective monitoring systems have been issued by IPCC, UNFCCC, GFOI and other organizations. However, there is a lack of consensus...

Shocks and Human Capital in Developing Countries

Aaron Szott
I begin my dissertation by introducing the following two chapters. I start out by describing the basic theory underlying economists' historical interest in the effects of shocks in developing countries. I then briefly review the empirical literature on household responses to shocks and outline how it is reasonable to expect that even recurring, non-exotic shocks have substantial permanent effects on affected young peoples' completed human capital stocks. Next, I describe the contributions that the following...

Nonlinear Optics Quantum Computation and Quantum Simulation with Circuit-QED

Prabin Adhikari
Superconducting quantum circuits are a promising approach for realizations of large scale quantum information processing and quantum simulations. The Josephson junction, which forms the basis of superconducting circuits, is the only known nonlinear non-dissipative circuit element, and its inherent nonlinearities have found many different applications. In this thesis I discuss specific implementations of these circuits. I show that strong two-photon nonlinearities can be induced by coupling photons in the microwave domain to Josephson nonlinearities. I...

Maritime Piracy: Solving the Optimized Transit Path Problem

John Robert Schedel
Models have been developed that accurately predict the probability of pirate activity at locations throughout the Arabian Sea. With these piracy prediction models, mariners transiting this region can ensure that their course avoids the highest threat regions and that ample anti-piracy precautions are in place elsewhere. However, they are on their own to determine their "best" transit path. Using unique piracy success predictors and transit cost calculators, along with existing pirate activity predictions, this research...


Jacqueline Soteropoulos Incollingo
Legacy newspaper organizations have attempted to adapt to the digital - and increasingly mobile - news environment as circulation and revenue have plummeted. In Internet traffic in general, and news use in particular, the use of mobile smartphones and tablets is eclipsing desktop and laptop use. Engaging mobile news users has become critical for the news media. In recent years, Interstate General Media (IGM) - the owner of the newspapers The Philadelphia Inquirer and the...


David Arana-Chavez
A model reduction methodology based on a Gauss-Jordan reaction factoriza- tion for thin-film deposition reaction systems is developed in this thesis. The fac- torization generates a transformation matrix that is used to create a new coordinate system that guides the separation of the deposition process time scales by decoupling the net-forward reaction rates to the greatest extent possible. The new coordinate space enables recasting the original model as a singular perturbation problem and consequently as...

Partonic Contributions to the Proton Spin in Lattice QCD

Yong Zhao
In Feynman's parton picture, the proton spin can be understood as sum of the contributions from the spin and orbital angular momentum of the quark and gluon partons. However, in gauge theories, there is no local gauge-invariant notion of the spin or orbital angular momentum of the gauge particles. It is shown that in the infinite momentum frame of the proton, the gluons can be equivalent to free radiation, which is analogous to the Weizsaecker-Williams...

British Viola Repertoire of the First Half of the Twentieth Century

Gregory Luce
The aim of this dissertation performance project has been to obtain a familiarity with the sound and emotional palette of the British viola repertoire of 1900-1950. The music of this time and place has a uniquely soulful, pensive, and internally wrought emotional quality which translates perfectly into the character of the viola. The first recital consisted of music written for the world’s then-preeminent viola virtuoso, Lionel Tertis (1876-1975). This program included Vaughan Williams’ Romance for...


Gerald Carter
Regurgitated food sharing among vampire bats is a classic textbook example of reciprocity ("reciprocal altruism"). But many authors have contested both the notion that reciprocity explains vampire bat food-sharing and the importance of reciprocity more generally. In Chapter 1, I review the literature on evolutionary explanations of cooperation. I show why reciprocity was once considered important but is now considered rare: overly literal translations of game theory strategies have resulted in problems for both defining...

Investigations into interkingdom signaling and quorum sensing phenotypes

Amin Zargar
Bacteria secrete and recognize communication molecules to coordinate gene expression in a process known as quorum sensing (QS). Through coordinated expression, bacteria are able to influence phenotypic changes on a larger population scale, such as biofilm formation. Recent studies into interkingdom communication have found cross-talk communication among bacteria and eukarya as well, which has been shown to influence actions pathogenicity and inflammation, among others. In this work, we developed E. coli ‘controller cells’ that guide...

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  • 2015

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