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Category: Technology
  • Expeditionary Ground Rehabilitation for Military-Vehicle Traffic

    Abstract: The research objective for this study is to identify and evaluate techniques for soil stabilization to support military-vehicle ground maneuver in contested environments. Various types of stabilizers mixed with silty sand are evaluated in the laboratory for their compressive strength at various soil moisture contents and in the field for their rutting performance. Field data are analyzed for the ability to withstand trafficking from a military ground vehicle by evaluating the rut depth and measured instrumentation data. The field testing shows that the rapid soil stabilization materials and techniques can produce repairs that withstand required traffic without traditional pavement surface materials.
  • Post-wildfire Curve Number Estimates for the Southern Rocky Mountains in Colorado, USA

    Abstract: The curve number method first developed by the USDA Soil Conservation Service (now the Natural Resources Conservation Service) is often used for post-wildfire runoff assessments. These assessments are critical for land and emergency managers making decisions on life and property risks following a wildfire event. Three approaches (i.e., historical event observations, linear regression model, and regression tree model) were used to help estimate a post-wildfire curve number from watershed and wildfire parameters. For the first method, we used runoff events from 102 burned watersheds in Colorado, southern Wyoming, northern New Mexico, and eastern Utah to quantify changes in curve number values from pre- to post-wildfire conditions. The curve number changes from the measured runoff events vary substantially between positive and negative values. The measured curve number changes were then associated with watershed characteristics (e.g., slope, elevation, northness, and eastness) and land cover type to develop prediction models that provide estimates of post-wildfire curve number changes. Finally, we used a regression tree method to demonstrate that accurate predications can be developed using the measured curve number changes from our study domain. These models can be used for future post-wildfire assessments within the region.
  • Porosity Measurement Device Design and Analysis

    Abstract: Porosity measurements are necessary to fully characterize the acoustic properties of a porous material. Many methods exist to measure porosity with various limitations. This report details a system based on previous work to limit environmental effects on measurements.
  • Lock and Dam 25, Upper Mississippi River Navigation Study: Ship-Simulation Results

    Abstract: The US Army Engineer Research and Development Center, Coastal and Hydraulics Laboratory (CHL), used the Ship/Tow Simulator to evaluate navigational conditions for the US Army Corps of Engineers, St. Louis District (MVS), proposed 1,200 feet (ft) lock chamber at Lock and Dam 25 in a tow simulation study. The study considers the impacts to navigation throughout construction sequences of the proposed 1,200 ft lock chamber and the final completed project. Testing occurred at CHL in October–November 2022 with five industry tow pilots. A total of 47 unique test conditions for a total of 187 ship-simulation exercises were evaluated. All final project simulations indicated that the design is feasible. When testing the construction scenarios of the design, it was evident that a tug assist boat would be necessary for entering the 600 ft lock for both approaches. Results found that the intermediate wall construction should begin at the existing structure and progress downstream. Entering the 600 ft lock from the pool side was additionally completed successfully; however, modifications are needed for entering from the tailwater side. Ultimately, the results of this study will aid MVS in the design plan and decision-making regarding the proposed lock.
  • Getting Started with FUNWAVE-TVD: Troubleshooting Guidance and Recommendations

    Abstract: This technical note reviews some common initialization errors when first getting started with the numerical wave model, FUNWAVE-TVD (Fully Nonlinear Wave model–Total Variation Diminishing), and provides guidance for correcting these errors. Recommendations for troubleshooting the source or cause of instabilities in an application of the model as well as recognizing the difference between physical and numerical instabilities are also outlined and discussed. In addition, a quick start troubleshooting guide is provided in the Appendix. This guidance is particularly useful for novice to intermediate users of FUNWAVE-TVD who are less familiar with the workflow of setting up the model and interpreting error output statements.
  • Laboratory Evaluation of Recycled Asphalt Pavement and Engineered Polymer Binder for Small Airfield Repairs

    Abstract: Conducting small asphalt repairs on airfields in remote locations can be technically and logistically challenging. An alternative to cold patch products is using an engineered polymer binder (EPB) mixed with recycled asphalt pavement (RAP). This paper presents the results of a laboratory evaluation of EPB with both wet and dry RAP. Compacted specimens were tested for rut resistance, indirect tensile strength (ITS), and Cantabro mass loss (ML). The results indicate that RAP mixed with EPB exhibited substantial rut resistance with ITS and ML similar to that of conventional dense-graded asphalt. Overall, the EPB and RAP blend appears to be a promising alternative for airfield repairs.
  • pH Pivoting for Algae Coagulation: Bench-Scale Experimentation

    Abstract: Harmful algal blooms (HABs) threaten recreational waters and public supplies across the US, causing detrimental economic and environmental effects to communities. HABs can be mitigated with dissolved air flotation (DAF) treatment, which requires addition of pH-sensitive charged chemicals to neutralize algae, allowing them to attach to microbubbles and float to the surface. During HAB events and photosynthesis, algae raise the pH to levels that are not ideal for DAF. Traditionally, pH is reduced with a strong acid; however, this adds operational cost and permanently adjusts the water’s pH. This study assessed an approach that might allow for infusing CO₂ from diesel-powered electricity generators into the water prior to DAF treatment. It was hypothesized that formation of carbonic acid could temporarily reduce the pH. Results showed that 2.5%–5.0% CO₂ mixed within compressed air can achieve pH levels between 6–7 in algal water with an initial pH of 9–11 and alkalinity of 150 mg/L as CaCO₃. Further, dosing CO₂ before chemical addition yielded a 31% improvement in water clarification. Returning the pH back to natural levels was not achieved using ambient air microbubbles; however, coarse bubble air spargers should be tested to provide more volumetric capacity for CO₂ absorption.
  • Hydraulic Load Definitions for Use in Load and Resistance Factor Design (LRFD) Analysis, Including Probabilistic Load Characterization, of 10 Hydraulic Steel Structures: Report Number 1

    Abstract: In the past, allowable stress design (ASD) was used to design steel structures. The allowable stresses used were determined from previous practice, with limited understanding of the reliability and risk performance provided by the structure. Engineering methods based on Load and Resistance Factor Design (LRFD) provide more accurate lifetime models of structures by providing risk-based load factors. Besides improved safety, cost savings can be provided through improved performance and, in some cases, by delaying rehabilitation. This research project develops LRFD-based engineering procedures for the evaluation and design of hydraulic steel structures (HSS). Hydraulic loads are a key element to the LRFD analysis. This report identifies the primary hydraulic loads and describes procedures that can be used to determine these hydraulic loads. Existing design guidance for HSS is described and presented in the individual chapters. The appendixes to the report provide examples of the procedures used to compute the hydrostatic, wave, and hydrodynamic loads. A new approach for determining wind-induced wave loads was developed. Design guidance for computing the hydrodynamic load was limited for many of the HSS. Additional research is recommended to improve capabilities for computing hydraulic loads. Details on these recommendations can be found in this report.
  • Encryption for Edge Computing Applications

    Purpose: As smart sensors and the Internet of Things (IoT) exponentially expand, there is an increased need for effective processing solutions for sensor node data located in the operational arena where it can be leveraged for immediate decision support. Current developments reveal that edge computing, where processing and storage are performed close to data generation locations, can meet this need (Ahmed and Ahmed 2016). Edge computing imparts greater flexibility than that experienced in cloud computing architectures (Khan et al. 2019). Despite these benefits, the literature highlights open security issues in edge computing, particularly in the realm of encryption. A prominent limitation of edge devices is the hardware’s ability to support the computational complexity of traditional encryption methodologies (Alwarafy et al. 2020). Furthermore, encryption on the edge poses challenges in key management, the process by which cryptographic keys are transferred and stored among devices (Zeyu et al. 2020). Though edge computing provides reduced latency in data processing, encryption mechanism utilization reintroduces delay and can hinder achieving real-time results (Yu et al. 2018). The IoT is composed of a wide range of devices with a diverse set of computational capabilities, rendering a homogeneous solution for encryption impractical (Dar et al. 2019). Edge devices are often deployed in operational locations that are vulnerable to physical tampering and attacks. Sensitive data may be compromised if not sufficiently encrypted or if keys are not managed properly. Furthermore, the distributed nature and quantity of edge devices create a vast attack surface that can be compromised in other ways (Xiao et al. 2019). Understanding established mechanisms and exploring emerging methodologies for encryption reveals potential solutions for developing a robust solution for edge computing applications. The purpose of this document is to detail the current research for encryption methods in the edge computing space and highlight the major challenges associated with executing successful encryption on the edge.
  • Mesoscale Multiphysics Simulations of the Fused Deposition Additive Manufacturing Process

    Abstract: As part of an ongoing effort to better understand the multiscale effects of fused deposition additive manufacturing, this work centers on a multiphysics, mesoscale approach for the simulation of the extrusion and solidification processes associated with fused deposition modeling. Restricting the work to a single line scan, we focus on the application of polylactic acid. In addition to heat, momentum, and mass transfer, the solid-liquid–vapor interface is simulated using a front-tracking, level-set method. The results focus on the evolving temperature, viscosity, and volume fraction and are cast within a set of parametric studies to include the nozzle and extrusion velocities as well as the extrusion temperature. Among other findings, it was observed that fused deposition modeling can be effectively modeled using a front-tracking method (i.e., the level-set method) in concert with a moving mesh and temperature-dependent porosity function.